Rob Wipond has been a freelance writer of magazine features, news articles, political commentaries, social satires, musical theatre and performance art for over two decades. He’s written about dumpsites, banks, consciousness research, prostitution, privacy implications of new technologies, sadomasochism, health care, toxic waste, international political economy, infomercials, psychedelic drugs, mental health laws and many other topics which hover between the intensely personal and the broadly political. His stand-up political rock comedy with Allen Both, “When I’m Big”, ventured into such venues as Toronto’s famed El Mocambo and Bamboo Club. CBC Radio Sunday Showcase/Monday Night Playhouse produced his satirical play, “Gypsy Moth”. His writings have appeared inAdbusters, Chatelaine, Explore, Monday Magazine and MAD, and he’s currently a regular columnist and feature writer on community issues for Victoria’s monthly magazine Focus. He sometimes provides research, editing or writing services, works as a sessional instructor in creative non-fiction and journalism at the University of Victoria and Royal Roads University, and co-writes songs and/or cross-fertilizes weird brain ideas with Michael Bell and Martin Gallop (Martin and Rob’s song “Silver Lady” is on the 2008 special edition CD “Teilzeithippie” from German pop princess Annett Louisan). He has recently co-written a new theatrical show touring high schools, “My Impractical Life”, starring mime and monologue artist Trent Arterberry. Rob also sometimes throws in bad suggestions for David Procyshyn’s DoYogaWithMe.com.
In this interview, Rob shares some of his own research about the BC Mental Health Act, how other cultures deal with emotional and mental challenges, and Robert Whittaker’s analysis of the pharmaceutical epidemic that’s evolving.