Archive for January, 2015
January 26 – February 1
RANDOM PIC OF THE WEEK
I’ve had dreams like this, and they were great! But this guy actually did it! I’m envious! Go, kitty, go!
Yup. This is it. This is the one. The one that made me misty-eyed at last Wednesday’s B.J. Thomas concert at the Grammy Museum. What a beautiful song written by legendary songwriters Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil! Listen to the story of “Rock and Roll Lullaby” and see if you too don’t get misty.
Monday the 26th – THE RETURN OF THE RAINY DAY DUCKS! – Luckily my eyes were no longer swollen when I woke up. I had suffered a pretty severe allergic reaction to something early Sunday morning that made my eyes puffy and swollen. Just like when I used to have bad hay fever attacks as a kid. But the Benadryl worked fabulously, though it made me really tired. I started the day with lunch at Jerry’s Famous Deli with my pal Angelique Perrin; fellow voice actor. It was good catching up. Since she spends half of the year in New York, I hardly get to see her and get caught up on her latest news. I went home and walked Roxy, and then I sped off to my mailbox to get my packages. My new NECA Robin figure was waiting for me, and boy is it cool! An 16” replica of Burt Ward as Robin to stand next to my 18” Adam West Batman! I was due at Warner at 2 to voice a new Lego project, and when I finished up I called me friend James who works in Post Production Services. We chatted for a bit and then I headed over to Michael’s Crafts. I needed to pick up an album frame so I could frame “Mary Poppins” laserdisc cover that I recently had Dick Van Dyke sign. I got home and fed the pets and checked on my e-mails. I took my NECA Robin figure out of the box and posed him in my main showcase next to Batman. Aside from a few things that bug me about the figure, it’s an amazing piece! We were expecting rain overnight, and it started almost as soon as I got home. One of my favorite things to do is go outside to the Jacuzzi and take a dip in the rain. It was an amazing experience. The thick clouds overhead were really pretty, and I loved watching the airplanes take off from the Burbank airport and disappear slowly into the thick overcast. The duck couple that come back in February every year had returned, and they were hanging out by the pool while I enjoyed the Jacuzzi. They’re sure messy and they crap in our pool a lot, but BOY are they fun and relaxing to watch. There’s something about watching them that gives me a good feeling. Beautiful, gorgeous creatures. But I’ve had a few girlfriends in the past who were like that too…beautiful to watch, but MESSY! I went inside and grabbed a nap by the fire and enjoyed listening to it rain outside. I got up later and did auditions, wrote Wally’s Week and hit Denny’s for some food to go.
Tuesday the 27th – PS FEVER! – Just before noon I got up and scanned a bunch of checks for a bank deposit. Sara came over to get Spooky to take him to the groomer for a nail trim, and Roxy for a bath. I flew off to Voice Trax West to record some tracks for US Airways. When I finished up I went next door to Chin Chin to meet Sara for lunch. Afterwards I went to Rusty’s to pick up Roxy. I took a dip in the Jacuzzi and grabbed a nap on the couch. The ducks spent the night in the pool, and when I walked Roxy, she got very excited by them. I’m not sure why exactly, or what she would do if she actually got near one, but she sure gets excited to see them. Of course because of her size, the ducks are very nervous around her, even though there’s a huge fence dividing her from the pool. Now that the rain has gone and the night skies are clear again, I’m having a serious jones for Palm Springs. I’ve got to get back there soon, but I’m waiting until the weather gets just a tad warmer. But I feel a trip coming on soon! I made some dinner and watched another “Mannix” episode from the season eight DVD set.
Wednesday the 28th – ROCK AND ROLL LULLABY! – When I got up at 2 I had several last-minute auditions to record. I wanted to get as many of them done early as possible, because I knew I’d be getting in late after an event at the Grammy Museum in downtown L.A. celebrating the work of B.J. Thomas. I handled some e-mails and other things around the house. It was a nice, cool, relaxing overcast day. I grabbed about an hour nap before I got ready for the event. My pal Edi came over so she could join me on the ride over, but my pal Brittney was running late so she decided to meet us there. Traffic on the freeway heading downtown was the worst it’s ever been. In addition to the event at the Grammy Museum, there was an L.A. Kings game (a TOTAL mess!) and a concert. All in the same 3 block area. I’m wondering why they don’t plan these events better to avoid gridlock like this. I hate hate HATE going downtown, but my pal Jim Pierson had invited me this event and I didn’t want to miss it for the world. B.J. Thomas’ music was playing quite frequently in our house when I was growing up and it meant a lot to me. We got parked and got inside just as the event was starting. Whew! They interviewed B.J. Thomas for about 45 minutes and did a brief Q&A with the audience, and then he sang about six songs including “Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head,” “Hooked On A Feeling,” “I Just Can’t Help Believing,” “Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song,” and my all-time favorite “Rock and Roll Lullaby.” The story of that song has always touched my heart quite a bit, and sitting there listening to him sing it live was quite moving. I’m glad I was in the back row of the small theatre. Otherwise somebody may have noticed the huge lump in my throat and my moist eyes. Though he said he was having voice troubles, you never would have known it. His vocal control is masterful! After the show I lined up with the rest of the audience to buy a CD at the retail store and have him sign it. But my pal Jon Konjoyan took me back in to the theatre. He introduced me to the lovely Mary Hart. I introduced myself to her and told her I went to Washington High in Sioux Falls. She was amazed, since she’s originally from Sioux Falls too. When I mentioned that I had just been inducted into the Sioux Falls Washington High School Hall of Distinction she said, “I’m so jealous!” I thought for sure she had been inducted a long time ago, but she explained that she never was a student there. After she got out of college in Sioux Falls she taught there for a while. I told her I was going to personally call the powers-that-be and get it changed so that teachers could be inducted as well. We had a great laugh talking about the old days in Sioux Falls. But when Jon told me who her husband was I about fainted. I humbly introduced myself to her husband Burt Sugarman, who produced one of the greatest TV shows of all time…”The Midnight Special!” I have the multi-disc DVD set and we watch it occasionally at movie nights. It makes us long for the old days when music was pure, simple and best of all…catchy! I told him we watch “TMS” on DVD during movie nights and he thanked me profusely for that. I also mentioned that while working on “The Tonight Show,” I would often go by Stage 4 on the old NBC lot and long to go back in time to when “TMS” was being shot. We shook hands and I told him it was great meeting him and gave him the “I’m not worthy” hand gesture. Mary said, “Oh don’t do that, then he’ll expect me to do that at home!” What a great couple of folks! I got back in line and met B.J. Thomas. We chatted for a bit and he’s a very nice guy. I got 2 CDs signed…one for myself and one for my mom; who always thought he had pretty eyes. Edi and I drove back talking about the magical evening and listening to the CD in the car on the way back. We stopped at DuPar’s and had a late dinner, and then I went home to walk Roxy and do some auditions. Thank you Jim Pierson for the great event!!
Thursday the 29th – MAGIC CARPETS! – When I got up at noon I met the carpet cleaners and let them in. I try to get the main carpets in my downstairs cleaned at least once every six months. So I took Roxy and Spook upstairs in the bedroom with me and we stayed there while the guys worked. I chatted on the phone all the while. When they finished I went back downstairs and worked on the computer for a little bit. I recorded a bit for Go 96.3 in Minneapolis, the new radio station that I’m doing all the voice bumpers for, and then grabbed a quick nap. I got up at 6 for dinner with David Elkouby at Jerry’s Famous Deli. David produces the autograph shows I like to go to, and I had a few suggestions about how the shows might run a bit more smoothly, given the fact that his show the week before with Dick Van Dyke was very chaotic. I think I offered some good organizational advice and I think he liked my ideas. Whether or not they’ll actually get implemented or not will be determined down the road. But if something doesn’t change soon I’m going to stop going to them. It’s turning into a joyless experience, much like the San Diego Comic Con. I got home and did my auditions, and I hit the hay with some beef stew and a “Mannix” episode. So far, the eighth season episodes are some of the best in the series!
Friday the 30th – FRIED-DAY! – It was a VERY busy day! I had to be up early for an ADR session for the new Sonic the Hedgehog cartoon called “Sonic Boom.” ADR stands for Additional Dialogue Recording. Once the animation is finished the producers will add additional lines or vocal effects for the characters, so they call you back into the studio to record those to picture. It’s also called “looping,” because in the old days they literally had the film you needed to dub on a loop that kept running over and over until you got it right. With digital, it’s a LOT different process. We finished up the session and I walked home to get my car and go to Taco Bell for some lunch to go. I had some time to lie down on the couch before my next session, and it started to rain unexpectedly. There wasn’t any rain in the forecast, but there it was! Best. Nap. Ever! I got up at 3:30 and headed to Skylark in Burbank to do a session for my pal Susie Lum. Some sort of Disney/Marvel project. I hadn’t seen Susie in a long time, so after the session we sat and chatted for a couple hours. The time really flew! I got some groceries on the way home and then got back to feed my starving pets. I did a bunch of work around the house and then grabbed a nap on the couch. I can’t sleep a full eight hours in a row, so I have to sleep in shifts. An hour nap here, a couple hour nap there, and about five hours in bed at night. When I awoke later in the evening I checked e-mails and did a bunch of stuff around the house. I made hot dogs on the grill and watched another “Mannix” episode. As I headed to bed morning was breaking. But the thick overcast prevented it from getting too bright. As I prepared for bed the beautiful blue/gray overcast sky gave me a magical feeling of peace and serenity. Couple this with the fact that one of my favorite “tranquil” songs happened to come on my i-Pod just at that moment. “Fragments” by Thievery Corporation gives me a wonderful feeling that moves me deeply. And listening to that song while staring out at that beautiful sky made me very reflective, tranquil and at peace. Pure magic!
Saturday the 31st – ONE DOWN, ELEVEN TO GO! – I can’t believe that the first month of 2015 is over already! WOW! This year is going to go VERY fast I’m afraid. I slept until 4pm, and then got up to walk Roxy and check e-mails. I did some prep for movie night. We watched the Blu Ray release of “Somewhere In Time” with Christopher Reeve and Jane Seymour. A beautiful movie, even more stunning in Blu Ray. When the film finished we watched some of the bonus features about its making. Fascinating stuff! I continued working around the house and took Roxy our for our late night stroll around the neighborhood. It was a gorgeous, clear night with a ton of stars. I was getting that Palm Springs jones again! I made one of my amazing salads and watched another episode of the old 60’s British series “The Avengers” (as is my Saturday night tradition) just before I turned in.
Sunday the 1st – WHEW! WHAT A WEEK! – I ended up sleeping until 4:45 in the afternoon! (Of course I didn’t really get to bed until 11 that morning) I got up and prepared for church. Roxy and I walked over and had a great time at the service. Because of the Stupid Bowl the attendance was down a bit, but the service was still really nice. The subject was “silence.” It’s a subject I’m totally down with, and enjoy whenever possible. I walked Roxy back home after church, got in my car and headed to my agent Pat’s house to pick up a signed photo for a friend. She had another VO guy sign a picture for a friend’s birthday present. Then I headed to Jerry’s Famous Deli to meet with my friend Serena. We chatted about everything from the entertainment industry, to guns (she’s a collector too!). I went home, lit the fireplace and napped on the couch for a bit. When I arose I had a ton of auditions to record. I fed and walked Roxy and got ready for another episode of “Mannix” before bed. In this particular episode he wore TWO of the sport jackets I had purchased from Mike Connors last year. Awesome!
And how was YOUR week??!!
PIX FROM THE WEEK