Archive for November, 2010
November 29 – December 5 (2010)
My favorite Christmas song of all-time! I always say every year…It’s not officially Christmas until I hear ‘It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!’ Well, I’ve heard it several times now and it still makes me smile. Give it a listen and see if it makes you smile too! The great Andy Williams doing a song that just “sounds” like Christmas-time!
Monday the 29th – HOLIDAY RUSH! – Lots of producers are hustling to get their deadlines met before the holiday break. Today I sped down to P.O.P in Santa Monica to do some more Old Navy TV commercials for the holiday campaign. Just as I finished up there I got a call from Rob Young, one of the writers for ‘The Tonight Show.” He called to explain a bit he was going to send me through the e-mail. I’d record it at home and then send it to the editor. It was a voice similar to the one you hear making the announcements at the airport. I got home and then recorded it and e-mailed it over to NBC. Then Troy, one of the other writers, had me record something quick and send it over to him. Busy day for comedy! I picked up some more potty pads at the local pet supply store Rusty’s. Sassie was doing better with her diarrhea, but now she was having a problem holding her pee pee. In the past, when she’s gotten diarrhea, a urinary tract infection followed. It looked like it was happening again. I went to NBC in the afternoon to do the taping of “TTS,” then went home to enjoy, what I call, “Christmas nappys.” I know, it sounds weird. But basically it’s me putting on the fire, getting a warm, fuzzy blanket, turning on Christmas music on the satellite, and catching a nap on the couch with Sassie and Spook. They seem to like ‘Christmas nappys” almost as much as I do. I got up later that night and met up with my pal Brittney Powell for dinner at DuPar’s.
Tuesday the 30th – ONE BUSY TUESDAY! – I had been considering taking my parents to Graceland over the Christmas to New Year’s break, but when I brought the idea up with them several weeks ago, my 98 year old grandma was having stomach issues. So they thought it was best if they stayed close to home. Well, then I figured I would take my mom and my dad could stay with grandma. But when I e-mailed that idea my mom said grandma was much better and they both would like to go. So I set about looking up flights but I wasn’t finding what I was looking for. I figured if it was right, the perfect flights would come my way. In the morning I went to Voice Trax West to do some more spots for HH Gregg. Then I headed over to Ascent Media to do two animated direct-to-DVD cartoons based on some voices I did for toys at Mattel awhile back. When I left there I rushed over to NBC (which is about a block away!) and met up with my friends Ruben Procopio (and his girlfriend Jeanne) and Eric Singer (and his friends Stefan and his mom Ellen). They were all coming to the taping of “TTS” and I wanted to be there to greet them. Ruben is a top sculptor and former Disney animator. He drew a nice sketch of Ariel for Jaymi, who works at “TTS” and helped get them the passes. She was overjoyed! Eric, of course, is the drummer for KISS, and was just on the show about two months ago! They all had great seats and had a terrific time at the taping! But during the show I got a call from Studiopolis. They needed a line change in an episode of “Bleach” that had to be delivered to Cartoon Network THE VERY NEXT DAY! After the taping, I took Ruben and Jeanne over to Studiopolis and they got to see how anime cartoons are dubbed. I doubt that anyone at Studiopolis knew that Ruben was an amazing animator and has his work on display in the Smithsonian! But it was our little secret. He enjoyed seeing the process. In fact, I only had to say two words. It literally took 5 minutes to do the dub. Afterwards, Ruben and Jeanne, and Sara and I had dinner at the Coral Cafe. Fun! That night my pal Jim Pierson came over to show me some new items he was having manufactured. Jim handles the “Dark Shadows” empire and he wanted me opinion on a few of the new products.
Wednesday the 1st – HAPPY HANUKKAH! – In the afternoon I went back to Studiopolis Burbank to dub some more episodes of “Kekkaishi.” In addition to doing my usual Hakoubi, I also did the voice of a monk. It was great fun. The guys at Ford called and said my Gran Torino (which had been in the shop a month getting repairs done) was about ready! I was SO excited! Now I had to figure out a way to get to AAA and get it changed over to California…registered, licensed, etc. So during the taping of “TTS” I called AAA and got the scoop. I was ready to roll! That night my pal and webmaster Scott Sebring came over to take pictures of Planet Wallywood for the great new Planet Wallywood section coming soon to this website! Stay tuned!
Thursday the 2nd – IT’S DECEMBER ALREADY??!! – In the morning I went back to P.O.P. in Santa Monica to do more voice tracks for Old Navy commercials. I really love working with those guys. They’re all awesome and we have a lot of fun. Sometimes…too much! I called my dog’s vet and explained that her pee pee issues were continuing. He knows how much it bugs her to come into the vet’s office, and it actually causes a lot of stress, so based on her history with UTI’s, he prescribed some medicine I could just pick up. Whew! That’s a relief! Coming back home from P.O.P. I stopped at Laser Blazer and picked up some new DVDs, and then went to It’s a Wrap. I found a cool shirt, a women’s leather coat that looks like the Michael Jackson Thriller jacket, and a really cool silky/satiny looking black men’s suit. It was western style with two horse’s heads embroidered on the shoulders. I immediately thought of my Uncle Bun, who trains racehorses. The price was right, so I picked it up. I figured it might be a little big on him but he could always have it tailored. Then I headed to NBC. On the way home from “TTS” I stopped at Ford and picked up the title from my Gran Torino’s glove compartment. I needed it to go to AAA to get it registered. I would need to get a ONE DAY MOVING PERMIT, so I could drive it over to get it inspected. Since the car hasn’t been registered since 1997 I didn’t want to run the risk of getting pulled over with expired (REALLY expired) plates. My pal Edi came over to join me for dinner in the evening, then I took more Christmas nappys. When I woke up, I saw the greatest sight! Both Sassie and Spooky were on the floor quietly sleeping right by the fireplace! Awww…it warms the heart!
Friday the 3rd – NON-STOP RUNNING AROUND! – Luckily I could sleep in a little today, but once I was up it was non-stop. First, I went to Voice Trax West to do some more voice tracks for this interactive phone system project I’ve been working on. If all goes well, I’ll be the voice of a major company’s interactive telephone system. We’ve done about four demos already, and so far it’s going well. When I finished that I went to my chiropractor’s office for an adjustment. But I got a call from “TTS” asking me to come in early, so my Dr. had to “crack and go.” We were taping early today anyway, but I went in extra early to record a quick voice bit. The taping was great and we were off for the weekend! I checked on some flights to Graceland for the folks and I, but I still wasn’t finding what I wanted. Maybe it wasn’t meant for us to go?
Saturday the 4th – THE HIGHS AND THE LOWS OF IT ALL! – What a strange day this was. It started out really great. I woke up just before noon and was on my way to AAA to get my Gran Torino registered. I wanted to get one of those ONE DAY MOVING PERMITS so I could get my car over to AAA to get inspected. I got in the Mustang with all my documents, and when I turned on the radio the first song I heard was “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!” GREAT! I drove out to AAA in Burbank with a smile on my face. Since they were only open until 2pm, I was afraid that a long wait would make getting my Torino out of Ford an improbability. But I got there around 12:30, and my name was called in about 5 minutes. A friendly guy named Steve helped me and told me that if I wanted to go ahead and pay the registration then and there, I could get a 30 DAY MOVING PERMIT! That would give me 30 days to get the car back for inspection! GREAT! That’ll help a lot! Since it’s a 1974 it falls outside of the smog certification requirements, so all it needs is a verification that the VIN on the car and on the title match, and that the safety sticker is on the inside of the door. I happily paid the money, I picked out my custom plates and sped home. I parked my Mustang and called my friend Sara to take me to Ford so I could pay them and get my car! It had lots of work done on it to make it drivable, including fixing the horn, the blinkers, cleaning the gas tank, a new carb, fixing the valve stem on one of the tires, fixing the sending unit for the gas tank indicator, and various hoses and cables. We got to Ford and they drove it out to meet me. WOW! This thing looks terrific, and it sounds great too! I had Sara take a few pictures of me standing beside it as I received custody. TOO COOL! I was totally excited! The service manager Anthony said that many of the guys at the shop would be sorry to see it go, as lots of them had enjoyed seeing it around while they worked. While he was trying to explain something under the hood when I got a call on my cell from my sister Bonnie. I said, ‘Bon, can I call you back?” She said, “Ok.” But her voice sounded weird. I said, “Is everything OK?” She said, “No.” Immediately many thoughts ran through my head simultaneously. Mom had just had a heart attack a month or so ago, and grandma hadn’t been feeling well…what could it be?! Bonnie told me that my Uncle Bun had a heart attack that morning and it didn’t look good. WHAT? Uncle Bun was the picture of health! Up every morning at 4:30 waking with the racehorses and doing chores? How could this be? Last time I saw him I commented to him how svelte and trim he looked. Of all the people this could have happened to, I would have NEVER thought it would be him. But as I was on the phone with my sister and mom, they got a call from my mom’s other sister telling her that Uncle Bun had passed on. I was in an utter state of disbelief! Just a few days ago I was thinking of him and how cool he would have looked in that black silky suit with the horse heads on it! And my poor Aunt Marlene who would now be on the farm all by herself! Luckily she has lot of family close by to help, but this was awful. I wasn’t sad though, strangely enough. Uncle Bun always had a kind word, a kiss and a hug for the nieces and nephews, and a joke or two. Always chewing on a toothpick, he was full of life and vitality. He helped his neighbors when he could and was a very upstanding, and fair guy. I had no doubt in my mind, in my heart and in my soul…where he was now. In fact, I’m sure he was frolicking with every horse he ever trained who had gone on before him. It all became clear to me now…THIS was the reason my Graceland trip with my parents wasn’t coming together. The fates knew that my folks would have other things on their minds during the time we wanted to go, and it just wouldn’t have been a very good trip considering how recent Uncle Bun passed on. Strange how things work like that. The intense highs and lows of the day had me in a vegetated state. How could I have been so high one minute-getting my Torino out of repair…and now just be in a state of stunned silence. Sara and I went to get some food, but I wasn’t very good company. I tried not to think about it much, and I drove my Torino over to my church to show some of the folks there who were manning the tree lot. My buddy Dan Roebuck came by so we could drive out to a warehouse and check out some special effects items that would be auctioned off in a week. It was fun to take the Torino out for a spin, knowing that it wasn’t going to die on me. We finished up and then headed back home. I had Sara help me with the car cover and we stashed the Torino in my parking spot. Then I got ready for movie night with my friends. We watched another episode of “Twin Peaks” and then “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” on Blu Ray! It looked marvelous!
Sunday the 5th – WET SUNDAY! – I woke up around noon, took Sassie out and then came back inside. I noticed it was really gray and cloudy outside. Sassie, by the way, was responding well to the medication and it seemed her pee pee problems had gone away. But I was keeping the piddle pads on the floor just in case. It was a good day to go back to bed, so I did just that. I slept until late afternoon, and I had intended to get the Torino out and take it to evening church. But it was raining outside! The Torino had just been washed by the guys at Ford, so I didn’t want to get it all spotty again. So I drove the Mustang over. Then Sara and I went to get a burger at The Counter, and then I picked up some grocery items. I came home, did some auditions in my home studio, e-mailed them to my agent, wrote Wally’s Week and then hit the hay for another week that promised to be VERY VERY busy! (And please keep a kind thought in your heart for my Aunt Marlene!)
And how was YOUR week??!!
Photos from the week
My 1974 Gran Torino fresh out of the shop. Gassed up and ready to roar!
Here’s a shot of Uncle Bun I took back in about 2005
This is the silk western suit I bought with Uncle Bun in mind on Thursday. I think it’s cool and he would have looked awesome in it. But now I guess I’ll hold on to it.