Archive for October, 2016

October 24 – October 31



RANDOM PIC OF THE WEEK

I love this graphic that’s associated with the new animated film “Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders.”  Even though Halloween is over, I still wanted you to enjoy it!

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OK, so sue me.  The song I’ve been humming is a Christmas song.  I know…too early.  But hearing George Michael’s “Last Christmas” made me happy this week!

Monday the 24th – MONDAY ON THE MOVE! – I didn’t get to bed until around 9am, but I got up right at 2 to start my day.  First stop was my bank to make some deposits, and then I went to my mailbox to pick up some packages.  I enjoyed a nice dinner at Paty’s on the patio, hit the cleaners to pick up my dry cleaning, and then went home to dive into Wally’s Week.  I took a dip in the Jacuzzi, grabbed a short nap, and then got up for my nightly auditions.  I finished up Wally’s Week, made some pizza rolls and watched more “Lassie” episodes on DVD. It’s really great watching all of Roxy’s great grandfathers working and helping to create legend.

Tuesday the 25th – BUDGIE SMUGGLER?! – The first stop of the day was my seamstress Karyn’s studio so I could try on the green stretch lame pants she was making for my Halloween costume.  I’m recreating the costume I wore in the Dell TV commercial as the Glam Rocker as my Halloween costume and it should be a ton of fun!  Now it’s important you understand that, when a man wears a costume like this, it’s imperative that he wear something called a Dance Belt.   It’s kind of like a super tight, padded jock strap.  It makes sure everything stays in place, and my seamstress wanted to make sure I had one before she did any fittings.  However, she called it a “budgie smuggler,” because that’s what the Australians call it.  We’ve been laughing about that ever since she told me about it.  The pants fit great, and now she just needs to put a hem in the bottom and elastic in the waistband.  This will be fun!  I stopped at Burger King to get some quick lunch.  Then I went over to Hobby Lobby to see if they had any great buttons for the Batman bowling shirts Karyn was making for this weekend’s L.A. Comic Con.  Unfortunately their selection was awful, so I went on my way.  I stopped at my mailbox to get my packages, and then headed home to walk and feed the doggies.  I had my friend’s dog Bunny staying with me for the week while she and her husband were in Tennessee.  I grabbed a nap, and then got up later to meet my friend Kylie for a later dinner at DuPar’s.  She was only going to be in town for a week, so I wanted to make sure we got together so we could get caught up on all the news.  I went home and did my nightly auditions, and did some other work around the house.  I made some dinner and watched another “Lassie” episode!

Wednesday the 26th – BITE ME! – When I got up at 2 I had every intention of riding my bike to get my mail, pick up a few items at Marshalls, and head to the bank.  But for some reason I was much too tired.  I’ve been coughing quite a bit because the allergy conditions have been terrible the past week, so I took some cough medicine the night before to make sure I didn’t keep hacking all night and lose my voice.  Perhaps the cough medicine was still knocking me out.  So I slept for a few more hours on the couch.  When I finally did get up it was close to 5:30.  I drove to my mailbox to get my mail, and then I stopped by Jersey Mike’s to get a sandwich.  While I was driving around I observed lot of people out walking their dogs.  As I drove I was talking to my friend Scott in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and we talked about how great it is that people take their dogs everywhere; the restaurants, stores, etc.  I got my sandwich and sat in the parking lot of Floyd’s Barbershop.  I had about 15 minutes before my appointment so I sat in my car eating my sandwich and listening to the radio.  When I finished I still had a few minutes, so I went next door to Chill, a frozen yogurt store.  I walked in the backdoor and started filling my yogurt cup with Very Strawberry yogurt.  When I turned around to put the toppings on, I saw a large Maltese dog, standing a few feet inside the front door barking at me like crazy.  His leash wouldn’t let him get any further inside the store. I just smiled and said, “You don’t have to bark at me. I love doggies.”  I paid for my yogurt, spoke briefly to the gal behind the counter, and headed out the front door to go next door to Floyd’s to meet my appointment.  When I got out to the front patio of Chill, this insane Maltese lunged right at me.  I thought he was just going to continue barking, but he sunk his teeth directly into my right ankle!  I was shocked!  Instinctively, I kicked the dog squarely in the rib cage and abdomen.  It was a natural defense mechanism, and though I feel bad about it, it was my first impulse so I didn’t get bitten again.  It wasn’t a small tap either.  I kicked that little jerk “through the goalpost of life” like a football!  The dog yelped and cowered under the table.  The owner, who was with his wife and two daughters, stood up and asked what had happened. My adrenaline was running like crazy and I was furious.  I told the guy his dog just bit me.  He apologized and said their dog gets very protective around his daughters.  I asked him why he had an aggressive dog like this out in public. It’s not like the guy said, “I don’t understand. This is the first time he’s done this.”  He said, “The dog gets protective around the girls.”  So let me get this straight…the guy KNEW his dog was aggressive, but not only did he give the dog enough slack on his lead to get 2 feet into the store to bark, but also gave him enough slack to lunge out and bite people walking out of the store?  What an idiot.  Total and complete negligence.  I told him I wanted his contact information immediately.  Then he told me to stop talking to him in a loud voice.  The nerve of this guy. His stupid, undisciplined dog just took flesh out of my ankle, and HE’S telling ME to settle down?  As I kept talking to the guy (his name was Arsen) he told me his wife was an R.N. and they lived next door. She could go get her medical kit and dress the bite.  I looked at my ankle and I only saw broken skin but no blood.  I told him I was running late for my appointment and I had to go, but I had his contact information for future reference. I told him to get his dog trained, because clearly the dog didn’t consider him to be the alpha dog and was out of control.  By the time I got to Floyd’s I was bleeding pretty badly.  Some of the stylists there got pictures of the wound for posterity and a possible lawsuit.  I figured I’d better walk back over to Chill to let him see how badly the injury had become.  I didn’t want him thinking I went somewhere and made it bleed so it would look worse.  His wife (Lena) went to get her medical kit and met me at Floyd’s to dress the wound.  I told her if this happened to a kid, they would be sued, blued and tattooed, and their life would be over. No house. No car. No money. Nothing. Sued.  I would heal. But if their crazy dog bit a kid it could scar the child both physically, emotionally and psychologically.  I told her to get it trained right away so it respected the husband as the alpha.  I’m probably not going to sue, but I’m going to make sure the dog (Luka) gets trained and disciplined to be a nice, family dog.  If I don’t do something, and it happens to a child, I would never forgive myself for not holding them to their commitment of getting him trained.  I got my hair dyed and came home.  The bandages she applied were already starting to come off, so before I redressed the wound I took some of my own photos.  It was bleeding pretty badly.  I took a shower and napped, and then got up for my auditions.  Before heading to bed for the night, I got the remainder of my Jersey Mike’s sandwich and got ready to watch 2 more “Lassie” episodes.  These episodes involved Lassie working for the forest service, and her owner was a ranger who got severely burned in a horrible forest fire.  It was a very weird, disturbing episode.  In the story, they showed Lassie running along the side of a busy freeway in an attempt to get to the hospital to see her injured owner.  It wasn’t trick photography, the cars were REALLY whizzing by Lassie!  It made me really nervous to see this.  I only have four more episodes left in the set.  This DVD collection isn’t a complete series, but rather is an overview of the best of Lassie’s TV work. It’s fascinating to watch.

Thursday the 27th – RAINED OUT! – After walking the doggies, (Bunny was still at my house) I checked my e-mails and then headed off to Mike Moore’s prop shop to take my Animal replica Muppet back to his care.  He’s going to fix the little lever in his head that operates his eyebrow blinking mechanism.  I stopped by Floyd’s to give my stylist Andie a few vintage KMET bumper stickers, and then I had intended to go home and hop on my bike.  But the sky had gotten dark and it had started to sprinkle.  So instead, I drove to the bank to make a deposit, stopped by the post office to mail some bills, and then I headed back home to feed the doggies and rest.  My pal Natalie Duran came over and we headed over to Karyn’s studio to pick up my Halloween costume and my Batman bowling shirts.  Then we went to Jerry’s Famous Deli to meet my friend Edi and her husband Elliot for dinner. They had just gotten back from their trip to Tennessee and it was fun hearing about their trip.  After dinner I went home and napped for a bit, and then got up to do my auditions and watch 2 more “Lassie” episodes.

Friday the 28th – L.A. COMIC CON! – Today was the first day of Stan Lee’s L.A. Comic Con (formerly known as Stan Lee’s Comikaze).  My friend Officer Mark picked me up at 2:30 and we got downtown by 3.  He checked into his room, and we went upstairs so I could dump my Dell Glam Rocker costume off before went to lunch.  The plan was to go get a quick lunch, go to the convention center to get our badges, and then head back to his room so I could change into my costume.  I thought it would be funny to see if anyone recognized the character. But our lunch took WAAAY longer than it should have.  They got my burger wrong, and before they brought the right one, Mark had already finished eating.  So we got delayed about a half hour so I could wolf down the burger.  The walk from the hotel to the convention center was quite a bit longer than I thought it was, so that ate up some time.  By the time we got there it was almost time for the convention to open at 5pm; and on the first day they were only open for four hours.  We got our badges and the show opened.  I told Officer Mark that I really didn’t want to waste valuable shopping time by going back to the room, putting on the costume, and walking back to the convention center.  That could have easily cost me an hour of convention time.  Plus, Natalie texted me that she was on her way, and I didn’t want her waiting outside the convention for her badge while I was putting on my costume in the hotel.   So I opted not to put the costume on.  But it was OK because that meant that it would be fresh and ready for the Halloween party I was attending on Saturday night.  Natalie had never been to a convention before, and was rocking her Lara Croft costume.  I ran into my old pal Bridget Marquardt from the “Girls Next Door,” so it was fun catching up with her.  A guy sitting behind a table yelled out to me, “Hey! Love your work!”  I asked him what work that was, and he said, “The TV commercial!”  DUH, Wally.  The line from the Dell TV commercial is “Love your work.”  The guy knew the commercial well and even did an impression of it for me.  Too cool!  Natalie had to leave, but our group went over to the hotel to have some dinner.  After dinner was over it was about 11pm, and I was beat!  I took an uber home and got ready for bed.  But I noticed an irritating tickle in my bronchial tube, sitting right in the little divot of my collar bone. I was hoping I wasn’t getting sick, but I just wrote it off to the likelihood that I was laughing way too hard at dinner and probably inflamed something.  I took some meds and went to bed.

Saturday the 29th – HALLOWEEN’S A BUST! – Even though I was up at 10, and ready to go at 11, my taxi didn’t show up until 11:45 to get me.  No wonder uber is killing the taxi industry!  I had on my Batman bowling shirt and it fit great!  The tickle in my bronchial passage was still there, but I took some cough medicine before I left so I wouldn’t cough during the voice-over panel I’d be doing at 2pm.  I got to the convention and met up with Mark and Connie.  Mark had his Batman bowling shirt on, and we had a third shirt made up for Adam West, who was appearing at the convention for that day only.  In addition to seeing many of my Voice Actor pals who were there signing, I also saw Kevin Conroy!  I told Officer Mark that BOTH of my Batmans were there!  Kevin is Batman in the “Arkham” series (where I play the Riddler), and of course Adam is Batman in the new animated feature “Return of the Caped Crusaders (where I play the Frank Gorshin Riddler).  After saying hi to Kevin I went to Julie Newmar’s table and chatted with her for a while.  I also got to see Lee Meriwether and her daughter Lesley.  Burt Ward fist-bumped me and told me he thought I did a great job in the film.  And then we went over to say hi to Adam and his wife Marcelle.  We had him sign the bat emblems on the backs of our Batman bowling shirts, and we presented him with his.  He said he tweaked his back and was in a fair amount of pain.  I told him the Batman bowling shirt had healing properties and he should wear it a lot.  I told Marcelle to get him to a doctor as soon as they got back home and get some therapy.  Back problems are nothing to fool with.  As I stopped by some of the tables of my VO pals, some of the fans recognized me and had me sign some of their things too.  It was lots of fun!  We went upstairs and got ready to do the panel, and even though I didn’t cough, I started to lose my voice halfway through it.  Of all the rotten timing!  I was hoping I wasn’t contagious because I had shook hands with countless people!  Why does this stuff always happen on weekends when I’m two days away from getting to my doctor!?  Officer Mark, his girlfriend Connie and I went to Hooters to try to get lunch after the panel, but they said the wait was about 45 minutes.  All I wanted to do was to go home and medicate and rest my voice. This meant an evening spent in bed being quiet, and NO Halloween party!  I’m NEVER going to get to wear my Dell Glam Rocker costume!  Between the bite from that stupid dog, and now losing my voice, this is just not my week! I came home and took a shower, medicated up and slept until midnight.  It killed me that I had to miss that Halloween party.  But if it’s a bug I caught, as opposed to something else, I didn’t want to make everyone sick.  Particularly since it was a party attended by a ton of Voice Actors!  I threw on some clothes and went to get a few groceries.  I called my doctor’s voicemail and left a message begging to get into see him first thing Monday.  I made my usual Saturday night Super Salad and watched another episode of the old BBC show “The New Avengers.”

Sunday the 30th – SUNDAY SLOTH! – I slept so much I felt like a lazy sloth.  I phoned my “adopted grandma” Shirley to let her know I wouldn’t be in evening church. Then I went back to bed and slept until 10.  I took some more medicines and napped on the couch until 2am.  I was able to do a few auditions (luckily they were for low, raspy-voiced characters) and did some work around the house. I’m holding out hope that I’ll feel better in time for Halloween night, so maybe JUST MAYBE I can put my costume on and go out somewhere.  The tickle had turned into a sore throat, so in addition to all the other medicines I was not popping painkillers.  Good grief!  I got to bed around 6am.

Monday the 31st – HAPPY…I MEAN…CRAPPY HALLOWEEN! – Even though I had just gotten to bed at 6am, my doctor’s office called at 8:15 and said they could get me in at 9:30. Great!  I got dressed and headed over.  He said my vocal cords are inflamed, but after listening to my lungs he didn’t think there was any infection or virus present.  Remember when I said I had been coughing a lot because of the horrible allergy conditions earlier last week?  Well, that could have been the thing that inflamed them.  Either post-nasal drip, or perhaps acid reflux could have injured them.  It’s happened before, so I really need to be more diligent about staying on my Nexium.  He prescribed me more cough medicine and a Z pack of anti-biotics just in case it turned into something else.  If it’s not a bacterial infection, and just an allergy-related vocal injury, then there’s no reason to start the Z pack.  But I’ll keep it for future use.  After my doctor’s appointment I stopped by Plastic Depot to pick up a newly fabricated support rod for my Kermit the Frog replica Muppet.  The other one was too short and didn’t support his head properly. I got some lunch at KFC and then picked up my mail.  My voice was sounding pretty good and seemed like it was on the mend.  But my doctor told me to take it easy the rest of the day.  So…no Halloween. No Dell Glam Rocker costume.  Bummer.  I went to pick up my prescriptions and then went home to rest all day and shut up.  I slept from 6 to midnight (that cough medicine really knocks me out!) Then I did some work around the house that didn’t involve me using my voice, paid some bills, reconciled some receipts and then did a few auditions. Luckily, again, they were for low, raspy-voiced characters.  I only allowed myself to do a few takes so I wouldn’t further inflame my vocal cords.   The more I think about this I really do believe it’s acid reflux related.  All of the coughing I was doing when the weather was killing my allergies probably caused some stomach acid to be forced up into my trachea.  It probably didn’t get all the way into my throat, and could only go as high as my collarbone.  But it was still enough to ruin my life.  Physically I feel fine!  No body aches, sneezing, etc. – the usual stuff associated with a cold or flu.  And acid reflux can cause sore throats like a virus would.  So I’m convinced it’s that.  I really need to be more attentive to my Nexium from now on.  But the good news out of all this is, I’m not contagious!  So all those hands I shook at the convention are good to go!  Whew!

And how was YOUR week??!!

PIX FROM THE WEEK

That little jerk bit me! My dog bite wound...attacked by a Maltese. It could only happen to me.

That little jerk bit me! My dog bite wound…attacked by a Maltese. It could only happen to me.

Signing an "Arkham" poster for a fan named Sean at L.A. Comic Con 2016.

Signing an “Arkham” poster for a fan named Sean at L.A. Comic Con 2016.

Adam West's signature on my new Batman bowling shirt looks awesome!

Adam West’s signature on my new Batman bowling shirt looks awesome!

Here's Adam West's Batman bowling shirt, ready to be delivered!

Here’s Adam West’s Batman bowling shirt, ready to be delivered!

It's always a treat seeing the lovely and talented Julie Newmar!

It’s always a treat seeing the lovely and talented Julie Newmar!

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It's the panel for the 'How to Succeed as a Voice Actor" feature!

It’s the panel for the ‘How to Succeed as a Voice Actor” feature!

Having fun with Johnny Green and Natalie Duran!

Having fun with Johnny Green and Natalie Duran!

Dueling Lara Crofts!

Dueling Lara Crofts!

Natalie Vs. Hulk!

Natalie Vs. Hulk!

My old pal Bridget Marquardt and her friend Laurene stop for a second to say hi.

My old pal Bridget Marquardt and her friend Laurene stop for a second to say hi.

Have Bat bowling shirts, will travel!

Have Bat bowling shirts, will travel!

It's the amazing Richard Horvitz!

It’s the amazing Richard Horvitz!

My favorite costume at the con.... MONOCHROME Superman!

My favorite costume at the con…. MONOCHROME Superman!

Signing another "Arkham" poster for a fan.

Signing another “Arkham” poster for a fan.

I always love seeing the different Riddlers at conventions.

I always love seeing the different Riddlers at conventions.

And it's always a treat running into my pal, legendary animator, Perry Zombolas.

And it’s always a treat running into my pal, legendary animator, Perry Zombolas.

It's legendary Voice Actor Rob Paulsen!

It’s legendary Voice Actor Rob Paulsen!

This guy was a “Dell” of a nice guy! He loved the Glam Rocker commercial!

At the panel demonstrate how “looping” is done in TV and movies, with a young Darth Vader fan.