Archive for January, 2014

January 27 – February 2


If you’re a fan of old people like I am, you’ll love this shot. Of course, this could be Jon Arbuckle when he’s really old having a nap with Garfield. (It really kind of looks like Garfield!)

Though it sounds weird, my collie Roxy will come stand in front of me when I’m sitting down, waiting for me to pet her back. Our new thing is “Lady Madonna.” I’ll pretend her back is a piano keyboard and I’ll play her back and sing “Lady Madonna” by the Beatles. Yeah, I know. Weird. But we have fun doing it. And she LOVES it! If you have a dog, grab him/her right now, play this song, and play your dog’s back. They’ll love you for it!

Monday the 27th – JUST ANOTHER ‘MANNIX’ MONDAY! – I got up at 11 and wanted to bike to “The Tonight Show” because it was such a beautiful day.  We had an early taping scheduled, so it would have been awesome to bike by Paty’s and have lunch on the patio, then bike over to work.  But my agent wanted me to wait on a comedy bit that I was supposed to record.  Unfortunately, it got scrapped and never arrived.  So since I didn’t have time to bike in, I hopped in the Mustang, dropped by McDonald’s for some quick lunch, and headed on in to NBC.  While we taped the show I worked on Wally’s Week, then went home to walk my dog Roxy, feed my cat Spooky, and take a dip in the Jacuzzi.  I did some writing and other work on the computer, then grabbed a nap. I got up later in the evening and did some auditions, then made some soup and watched another exciting episode of “Mannix!”

Tuesday the 28th – AND THEN IT HIT ME! – Automatically I woke up on my own at 11am.  I did some work around the house, walked Roxy and waited for a “TS” bit that never arrived.  I decided to hop in the Torino and drive over to Paty’s for a salad on their patio.  It was another stellar day out!  Overcast, but still warm. Lovely!  During the taping of “TTS” I started to get a case of the “sads.”  I thought I’d be OK with the whole end-of-show thing, but for some reason today it kind of hit me.  I’ll really miss these folks!  A finer group of professionals (and darn nice people) you’ll never find!  On the way home I decided to stop into Floyd’s Barbershop for a touch-up on my color. I also got a bit of a trim.  I got home and fed Spooky and walked Roxy, then got on the computer to do some work.  I relaxed a bit in the Jacuzzi, then grabbed a quick nap on the couch.  When I got up later I had a TON of auditions to do.  But one of the web delivery systems I normally use to upload my auditions wasn’t working properly. So I had to punt.  I love working in the middle of the night on these things…no leaf blowers, no phones ringing, nice and quiet…but sometimes that’s when the servers I use decide to go on maintenance.  And if it’s just a regular old technical glitch, sometimes those things don’t get fixed until the next morning.  I made some hot beef stew and watched another “Mannix” episode from the seventh season DVD set.   He’s really getting his butt kicked this season.  It seems he’s always in peril.  A plane crash, kidnapped by a gang, shot in the side…wow!  They’re really upping the ante!  Poor Mike Connors!

Wednesday the 29th – OH SHOOT! – At precisely 11:11 I sprang awake. When I looked at the clock and saw what time it was I made a wish.  But Jimmy Fallon’s still getting “The Tonight Show.”  Rats.  I got up and made some calls, did some work around the house, resubmitted some of the auditions that didn’t make it through the night before, and answered some texts.  One audition was the entirely wrong copy. So I redid it using the right copy and resubmitted.  Then I went on the San Diego Comic Con website and signed up for my Pro badges for this year’s convention.  Since I won’t have “TTS” this year, it’ll be good to get back to enjoying all four days of the convention, and not just the busiest two days of the convention.    The last time I got to go all four days was back in 2009.  And that was a real whirlwind!  My high school reunion and the 2009 Comic Con happened on the same weekend, and I wanted to attend both.  Until they get that cloning thing figured out I had to work a miracle.  I drove to San Diego on Wednesday and enjoyed a few days of the convention.  On Friday morning I got up at 4am and hit the San Diego airport.  I headed to Aberdeen, South Dakota by way of Minneapolis.  I was praying that all my connections would be on time.  And on Sunday morning I was on the plane in Aberdeen at 5am heading to San Diego.  I touched down at the San Diego airport at 11am, and was on a voice actor panel at 11am.  Whew!  I was going to have lunch with Edi but she came down with a cold.  I only have 7 more “Tonight Shows” to go and I just don’t want to get sick.  If I make it through next Thursday, I will have been the exclusive announcer for all of Jay’s “TS” episodes since he got the show back in March of 2010.  In fact, I only missed one “Jay Leno Show” because of extreme laryngitis.  So I hopped in the Torino and went to Taco Bell to get some lunch.  I pulled into the NBC parking lot and ate my lunch while listening to 70’s on 7 on my satellite radio.  Then I went inside to tape the show.  When we finished up I went over to It’s a  Wrap to check their stock.  I stopped by Rocket Fizz and got some candy and grape soda. Then I went to Firing Line in Burbank to meet my neighbor Bob to do some target shooting.  He just bought a new Smith and Wesson M&P .40 caliber, and we wanted to try it out.  Soon, we were joined by my friend Alex and her friends Chya and Audrey.   Everybody had shot before except Audrey.  She did pretty well, but she was a little rattled by the shots going off around her.  I told her she’d get used to it.  On the way home I hit Wendy’s to get some food, then headed home.  I fed Spooky and walked Roxy, took a dip in the Jacuzzi and napped quickly on the couch.  I got up to do 12 auditions.  Then did some work on the computer and fed Roxy.  We took our late night walk, then came back inside to watch “Mannix” and make a pizza.

Thursday the 30th – JUST ANOTHER “MANNIX”…THURSDAY? – My hotline rang at 11am to do a bit for “TTS.”  Only six more days and it’ll never happen again.  Hard to believe.  But it’s been a great four and a half years.  I did a session in my home studio for 2 radio commercials. Then I got a call from MANNIX himself!  Mike Connors called to see if I wanted to buy some of his screen-used sport jackets.  I told him I had just bought three from a collector, but I’d like to get some more.  Aside from being his personal screen-used wardrobe, they’re really cool, high quality vintage coats!  So next week I’m going over to his house to see what he has in stock.  It was my dad’s birthday so I gave him a call to wish him a happy birthday.  I did a few more auditions then headed over to Guns Direct to see if my pal Kyle could clean a few of my guns.  But he wasn’t there, so I’ll try in a couple days.   I drove to Subway to get a six inch tuna on white, then went to NBC to tape the show.  Over the years, the show has collected up a goodly amount of high quality gifts that they give out to guests and dignitaries.  Since the show is winding down, and they still have a ton of this stuff left, they had an employee raffle.  I won a portable coffee tote. But since I don’t drink coffee, I’m trading it for a cool leather topped keepsake box with another employee who DOES drink coffee.  After the show I talked with a few of the employees’ guests who attended the taping.  Then I stopped by my mailbox and picked up some mail.  I went to Office Depot to get a 32 GB jump drive, then I hit Michael’s Crafts to get a frame, then went home.  I drove home with light showers falling.  Nice!   I hit the Jacuzzi, and then came inside to take a phone call from my friend Reed.  Then I napped on the couch.  I got up and did a bunch of auditions, then fed and walked Roxy.  My assistant Sara came by and we ordered some Denny’s to go.  Then we settled in to watch an episode of “Mannix.”  When the episode was over I was flipping around the channels.  I settled on PBS who was running “Elvis: Aloha from Hawaii.”   Amazing.  His version of “American Trilogy” never ceases to give me chills.  He was something else. Then is started feeling a little sad.  The guy had it all. And piddled it way.  Poor Elvis.  What a sad end to a glorious life of music and magic.

Friday the 31st – OLD HOME WEEK! – When I got up at noon I did some auditions, walked Roxy and then did some writing for a meeting I was having later that day.  Then I got a call from my agent with instructions to be at “TTS” at 1:45 to record some comedy bits.  So I cleaned up and headed in.  I did the bit and headed over to where the food trucks park to get a bite.  On my way out the door I saw my old pal Dan Roebuck and his kids who were in the lobby waiting to get their tickets to the show.  Dan and I have been buddies for awhile, and he and I produced the “Goolians” Docu-Comedy for the “Groovie Goolies” DVD set that came out a few years back.  He’s one of the busiest character actors in show biz, and sure enough…he had an audition at Universal immediately after the taping was done!  But he also played Jay Leno (brilliantly) in the HBO movie “The Late Shift” several years ago.  And he and Jay have been friends ever since.  I got a sandwich then came back to the audio booth to eat until it was showtime.   After the show Jay took a picture with Dan and his family, and they chatted for awhile.  Then I took Dan his family backstage for a quick tour before he had to speed off to his audition.  Then I threw on my coat and headed over to an important meeting that my friend Reed Kaplan and I had been planning for all week.  The meeting went very well and went almost a full hour and a half. Lots of ideas were discussed.  It’s for a project that my production partner Reed Kaplan and I have been hoping to land for quite awhile now, and the timing is finally right for it.  It would be a fairly large project that would begin roughly around the time “TTS” ends production. How’s THAT for timing?  And one of the guys I met with was originally from Minneapolis, so we spent lots of time reminiscing about the good old days spent at Met Stadium in Bloomington watching the Minnesota Twins play.  Lotsa fun!  So fingers crossed that it goes our way!  When I got home I started to unwind in the Jacuzzi, and then enjoyed a nap on the most comfortable couch in the universe.  I got up to do some work, and do some more writing based on the progress we made in the meeting earlier in the day.  I fed and walked Roxy, then went out to get some groceries.  I made an enormous salad and watched another episode of “Mannix.”  Within these last two seasons, I’m fully expecting to see Mannix wear the sport coats that I recently took possession of.  Based on the dates of service written on the label inside the inner pocket, and based on the production dates of the episodes I was watching, it should be any time now.  I’m keeping my eye peeled!  After all the work around the house, the grocery-getting, the writing, dinner and Mannix, I got to bed around 10am Saturday morning!

Saturday the 1st – SATURDAZED! – Mid-afternoon I woke up and took Roxy out for a bit, had some cereal, then went back to bed and slept until 6pm.  Considering the wild week I had it felt really good to sleep.  When I got up I started straightening up the kitchen and my office area in anticipation of that evening’s movie night party.  I fed Spooky and walked Roxy, and then my assistant Sara came over to help clean up a bit too.  As I was making my way back down the sidewalk with Roxy to come back inside, I saw my friends Larry and Kerry pulling up for movie night. So we all walked back into the house together.  “Frozen” was our film that night and everybody seemed to enjoy it quite well.  When everyone left I laid down on the couch for a few hours, then got up feeling invigorated.  I spent all night doing more writing, and even putting lyrics to a tune my pal Alex Zsolt had written for an upcoming project.  I walked and fed Roxy, worked some more on the computer, then hit the hay around 8am to watch another episode of “The Saint.”  I’ve only got about 19 more episodes to watch before I’ll have seen all the black and white episodes.  I’m going to miss the show quite badly, but I can always re-watch the color episodes I suppose.

Sunday the 2nd – EERIE, STEAMY DUCKS! – At 3 I got up and walked Roxy, then went back to bed for an hour.  Roxy and I headed over for the evening church service and it was really overcast!  When church was over, and it was time for us to walk back home, it was raining pretty good!  We dashed home as fast as we could, but still got pretty soaked.  I had a phone meeting with my pal Reed Kaplan to talk about some last minute writing I needed to do.  When we finished the meeting on Friday, we did so with the promise that we would have some additional information for them first thing Monday morning.  After I hung up I headed outside to enjoy the Jacuzzi again, and my duck friends were back floating in the pool.  But because of the cool conditions, and the heated pool, the steam rising from it was very heavy.  It was pretty great watching the ducks float around on the pool in the midst of all that thick steam.  And as their movements agitated the water, it played fun tricks with the light in the pool.  The light would shoot up in white spears through the steam and flicker as water splashed to and fro.  Really neat!  When I got out of the pool I headed back inside to finish up my writing project so I could e-mail it to Reed for final approval and submission.  I worked some more around the house, then made some Buffalo Mac and watched another “Mannix.”  Now THIS is livin’!

And how was YOUR week??!!


With Jay at his desk

Tonight Show crew