Archive for March, 2017

March 20 – March 26


Why oh why does this bring me such unadulterated, pure, blissful joy?

With the passing of “Gong Show” creator and host Chuck Barris, I got to thinking a lot about how much I loved that show as a teenager.  In particular, I loved Gene Gene the Dancin’ Machine.  Whenever he came on it was pure, unbridled joy.  I loved how television could made you feel, especially when it was wacky and chaotic like when Gene Gene the Dancin’ Machine would come on stage.  His theme song was Count Basie’s “Jumpin’ at the Woodside.” I remember when my boss at the radio station in Aberdeen, SD (Maestro Mike Nelson) told me that the Gene Gene song was actually a big band hit.  He played if for me on an old Count Basie album and I flipped!  In memory of the Count, and in memory of Gene Gene…here you go.  Just TRY and not picture Gene Gene the Dancin’ Machine in his green and yellow Adidas track jacket while you listen to it.  I dare you!

Monday the 20th – HU-MED-IFIER! – Just after 2:30 I woke up, checked my messages and e-mails, did a few last-minute auditions, and then headed to my box to pick up a few packages.  In my mail, was my new lighted humidifier.  With all the sinus troubles I’ve been having I wanted to get a new, improved humidifier to keep in the Tranquility Zone while I slept or watched TV.  I got this one on eBay and it’s really cool!  The water tank has LED lights under it, and it changes color while it humidifies!  Medically advantageous AND pacifying at the same time!  I met my assistant Sara at Paty’s for some lunch, and then came home to swap out the Torino for the Mustang because it was supposed to rain over the next few days.  I came home and did some work around the house. I set up the humidifier and it’s even cooler than I thought!  I also decided to type out the entire history of my sinus issue so I could take it to the ENT surgeon the following day. I wanted her to have a clear history of everything that happened leading up to my problem.  Speaking of sinuses, they were acting up again; pain and pressure. So I took a nap until midnight.  When I woke up it was time to tackle a TON of auditions.  Then I typed out Wally’s Week, fed and walked Roxy on our late-night stroll through the complex, made some spaghetti and watched another episode of “Love American Style” before bed. It was a really funny one about computer dating circa 1969 with Herb Edelman and Broderick Crawford. Hilarous!

Tuesday the 21st – SURGER-REAL! – Well, I need to have sinus surgery.  I consulted with the ENT surgeon today and she confirmed that it was the only option for clearing my left sinus and getting back to a pain-free normality.  She put a camera up my nose and I got to see up my nose on the big screen (for better or worse!)  But I did get to see how normal my right sinus, and how crowded my left sinus is.  So it’s the old “up your nose with a rubber hose” thing.  The old Roto Rooter up the schnozola routine!  I have a very busy April planned with sessions and travel scheduled, so we’re trying to find a day ASAP to do it.  I grabbed Taco Bell on the way home, and by the time I got in it was raining.  So…I took a nap.  I got up later for auditions, walked and fed Roxy, and made some hot dogs on the grill. I watched another “Love American Style” before bed, but I had to be up fairly early for an American Airlines session on Wednesday.

Wednesday the 22nd – THE DATE IS SET! –  By 2pm I was at Voice Trax West to do two hours’ worth of voice work for the American Airlines phone system.  After the session I got a call from my ENT’s scheduler who said I’ll be getting the sinus procedure on the morning of April 6th; a little over 2 weeks away.  I wish it were sooner, but there is a ton of pre-op stuff to get done before that.  I need to get a chest X-ray, EKG, blood panel, and another CT scan.  It makes sense since the last one I had was well over a month ago.  I went home to do some work and I started getting another bad sinus headache.  I took my dose of Mucinex and some Tylenol.  I’m not supposed to take Advil anymore because that and other aspirin-based pain medications can thin the blood.  And they want me to be able to clot normally after the procedure.  So for the next month, no more Advil or daily supplements.  Certain vitamins can thin the blood too.  Around 8 I grabbed a nap, and then got up at midnight to do my nightly auditions. Strangely enough, with a blocked left sinus, I still sound pretty much close to my usual voice.  Occasionally I’ll hear a slight difference in the playback, but for the most part my voice is unaffected.  Once the surgery is completed, I’ll sound even better. My voice should be more resonant, full and vibrant.  And I’ll be able to BREATHE better!  I fed and walked Roxy, and then scanned some checks for a bank deposit.  I did a little bookkeeping, and then made my reservation for my upcoming trip to Palm Springs in late April.  I called the hotel to speak with the night clerk at the Hyatt and she locked me into my usual room!  I CAN’T WAIT!  After all the crap I’ve been through, I need it!

Thursday the 23rd – TOO POOPED TO PUMP! – On my way to another American Airlines session at Voice Trax West I grabbed a 6 inch tuna sub at Subway.  After two hours of voice tracking, I headed over to my ENT’s office to pick up a few prescriptions, and all the paperwork I’ll need to get my pre-op stuff handled.  On the way home I treated myself to a banana split at Weinerschnitzel/Fosters Freeze.  Then I headed home to feed the kids, check e-mails, do a few last-minute auditions, and then I grabbed a short nap on the couch. My sinus was acting up again, and when my personal trainer Natalie Duran arrived to do my work-out, I wasn’t in much of a mood.  So after a short visit she headed back home.  I went to my neighbor’s house to walk their greyhound Abby, since they weren’t home and she needed walking.  I came back home and put a cold pack on my face and take a nap.  I got up at midnight to do my auditions, and then drove to Denny’s to get some food to go.  I watched another “Love American Style” and one of the minor players in this episode was a young Harrison Ford!  It was amazing to see him circa 1969!

Friday the 24th – FRIDAY FINALLY! – I got to Studiopolis Burbank by 2 so I could do some more voice work on a cartoon that’s being produced for Netflix.  My assistant Sara stayed at my house with the maids so they could complete their cleaning of Planet Wallywood.  After the session my sinus started acting up again, so it was time to take another Mucinex. But this time it was so bad I took one of the prescribed pain pills my doctor gave me.  I went to the pharmacy to get a prescription filled, got a few groceries, and then came home to rest.  I’m afraid it’s going to be a looooooong two weeks until this surgery!  I took another nap with an icepack, and then got up later to do some miscellaneous work around the house.  Sara’s been scanning all of my personal photos in my collection, so I did a little work organizing those in new photo album binders.  I made myself a Chef Boyardee pizza-in-a-box (YUM!) and watched “Love American  Style” before bed.

Saturday the 25th – DUCKIES AND DOVES AND GEESE (OH MY)! – It sure felt good to sleep until 3 in the afternoon. I got up and headed to the local market to get some tomatoes for my Saturday Night Super Salad, and some Tylenol PM.  Since I can’t take Advil PM anymore, I may need to take Tylenol with a sleep booster at some point.  I made it back and got ready for movie night.  It was a fun one…we played “The Gong Show Movie” in honor of the recent passing of Chuck Barris, the show’s host and creator.  After everyone left I slept on the couch for a few hours, and then worked on my computer organizing a few of my photo folders.  I fed and walked Roxy, and it was a gorgeous, clear night.  I went back inside and did some more work until it was almost dawn.   As I went upstairs to my room to get ready to retire for the night, a few mourning doves perched just outside my bedroom window on my roof.  I sure do love those little things; they’re so peaceful and soothing.  Unlike a few hours earlier, the sky was now completely overcast.  That meant that it was going to be another “Blue Morning;” where the sky turns from dark grey, to blue grey to bright blue. It’s very tranquil and relaxing. So I just put on some meditative music, put on my comfy robe, and sat on my window seat for about 45 minutes enjoying watching the day dawn.  In addition to my mourning dove friends I had seen earlier, I saw a few ducks fly overhead.  Then I heard a loud honking sound, and a goose flew overhead too!  What a wild-life-filled morning!  I ate my traditional Saturday Night Super Salad and watched another episode of “Hee Haw.”  But just before I turned in for good, I checked in on the Southwest Florida Eaglecam to see what was going on with the baby eagle (now 3 months old) named E9.  He was perched atop a dead tree just minding his own business. And then the funniest thing happened. A blue jay started dive bombing the eagle.  Even though he’s only 3 months old, he’s HUGE!  This blue jay saw E9 as a threat to his nest, so he started chirping at him like crazy.  E9 probably doesn’t know he’s a threat because he hasn’t started hunting yet.  Mom and dad still brings him his food.  So E9 was looking a bit puzzled as to the reason of the confrontation.  Luckily, some astute person caught much of the altercation on video and you can see it here   The action starts at about 7 minutes in.  I kept watching in amazement as this brave little blue jay kept dive bombing this eagle that’s 20 times his size!  Then I saw the reason.  In a knothole in the dead tree, three or four birds started pouring out and flying away.  It must have been the nest the blue jay was protecting.  But E9 was just minding his own business and didn’t seem at all interested.  Sick of the hassle, E9 finally flew off.  I LOVE nature!  But the streaming stopped on the eaglecam, and with a frustrated growl I turned off the computer and went to bed.

Sunday the 26th – RELAAAAAXXXX! – Since Sundays are traditionally my sleep-in days, I didn’t get up until 3.  I woke up with both Spooky and Roxy on the bed wanting to cuddle. It’s a nice way to wake up. I got ready for evening church and walked over with Roxy. My “adopted grandma” Shirley walked back home with me and we went to Lancers for dinner.  I enjoyed a delicious hot beef sandwich.  Lancers is one of those places that seems like it’s still lost in the 60’s/70’s.  Very family oriented and very old school; much like the places I used to go to with my folks as a kid in South Dakota.  The dinner was great!  I drove Shirley home and then headed to my house.  I was getting another sinus headache so I went home to nap on the couch for a bit.  I got up later to tackle a ton of auditions, and then I made sloppy joes and watched another “Love American Style.”  Aside from the sinus issues, not a bad week all in all.

And how was YOUR week??!!