When I was a kid living in Aberdeen, South Dakota, one of the things I looked forward to every summer was when downtown Aberdeen merchants would fill the streets with merchandise that were marked down to insane prices! They closed Main Street and we shopped and shopped and shopped. This photo was enhanced and colorized, and it really takes me back to those “Crazy Days” of Crazy Days shopping in Aberdeen!

One of the numbers I really enjoyed from watching “The Muppet Show” this past week was “I Got To Rio.” Enjoy!


Monday the 29th – OUI! OUI! – There were several errands I needed to do, so I got moving. First, it was off to the bank to make some deposits. Then I went to CVS to get some supplies and some prescriptions, and then it was off to the post office to mail some stuff. I was going to go to my mailbox to pick up some packages, but I figured I’d do that on Tuesday. I got back home and did some work. I also did a few auditions, which included some crazy voices for some cartoon auditions. I also found out I had a session to do for a regular client, so I spent some time doing that. My friend Cecille is originally from France, but she’s lived in L.A. for several years now. Her brother and sister-in-law were in town from France on vacation, so I extended an invitation to them to see Planet Wallywood. After the tour I took them to Bob’s Big Boy to get a good ol’ American dinner – burgers and…ahem…French fries! We said our au revoirs and they took off. I took a quick nap, and then spent the rest of the night writing Wally’s Week. I took Roxy on our late-night walk through the neighborhood, but I realized that during my nap I slept wrong somehow. My back was killing me! I also found out that a heat wave was on the way…about two weeks of triple digit temps! It happens every summer here in L.A., and I was almost thinking that we were going to skate by without it this year! Not!

Tuesday the 30th – RARE PART! – Just before I met a friend for lunch, I stopped by my box to get some packages. Then it was off to Paty’s to meet my new pal Andy for lunch. I met him at the grocery store a week ago when I spotted him wearing a cool Creature From The Black Lagoon t-shirt with the “Famous Monsters of Filmland” magazine logo on it. Like me, he’s a fellow monster kid. Come to find out he’s an animation director too. So we had lots to discuss! At lunch he gave me a vintage issue of “Famous Monsters” magazine. He’s been working on embellishing his collection of the magazines, and he happened to have two copies of this particular issue. I, on the other hand, did not have this issue in my collection. NICE! We talked for about two hours, and then it was time to head over to Voicecasters for a quick Voice Over session for a regular client. Since I was in the area, I stopped by the Burbank Auto Doctor to check on my Mustang. If you recall, the computer in my Mustang went haywire a few weeks ago and they’re in the process of replacing it. But apparently for that particular year of Mustang, the computer is very difficult to replace. They had a particular model of computer for Mustangs up to the year 2002 (easy to find), and another particular model of computer for Mustangs after 2004. But they only used one particular model of computer for the 2003 models, and they’re difficult to find apparently. Great. So it’ll be another week or so before it’s in. Part of the joy of owning a classic car! On the way home I stopped by Wienerschnitzel for a banana split. I got home and did some work, took a short nap, and then got up for my nightly auditions. It was a warm night and I took Roxy out for a walk, but her back legs were giving her trouble. So we kept the walk brief. I ordered her a harness and wheel system on-line to help her on those bad back leg days. Poor little girl. I spent a little time on Dead Tree Terrace, that special place in my neighborhood where I can sit and relax and meditate for a while as I look at the sky. It was perfect weather for it, and I saw the usual crop of stars, as well as some shooting stars. I came back inside and made some hot dogs on the grill and watched a few more episodes of “The Muppet Show” before bed. It sure was nice to have a few days off, given how crazy last week was!

Wednesday the 31st – 110! – On the final day of August 2022 we got a dose of Palm Springs weather! It was rather nice! When it hit 110 in the afternoon I went outside to sit around and enjoy the warmth. Roxy was still having a tough time with her back legs, so I gave her one of her potent painkillers and she napped. I called the lady from whom I got Roxy back in 2012 to check in with her. I updated her on Roxy’s condition and urged her to come see Roxy the next time she’s in town. I’m just not sure how much longer ol’ Rox is going to be around. I talked to my computer tech and told him that the scheduled back-up of my computer system, that he programmed last week, had failed. So our only alternative was to do a “forced back-up” and force the back-up drive to start copying everything over. Given all the data I have this could take the better part of a week! I went to my mailbox to get a package, and then met my pals Scott and Vickie Sebring at Paty’s for dinner. I hadn’t seen them in a while so it was fun to catch up. I came back home to do some work, record an audition, and I noted that it was still 92 degrees out at 10pm! I took a nap, and then spent the rest of the night doing some work, including signing several boxes of Renji Funko Pops for fans in a private signing.

Thursday the 1st – COYOTE ENCOUNTER! – Luckily the pick-up that I rented while my Mustang is in the shop has great air conditioning. Of course my Mustang’s computer couldn’t have failed in the cooler months so I could just drive my Gran Torino around. That would have been TOO easy! I drove to the hardware store to get some spare keys made for my new front door knob, picked up Roxy’s prescriptions at the vet’s office, and then mailed off the autographed stuff. I also mailed off some Christoween stuff to a pal in Florida who hosts my favorite Christmas radio show. He wrote in a mention of Christoween in this year’s radio show! I drove over to the grocery store to get some groceries, and then I got a sandwich at Togo’s and headed home to eat. I unloaded the groceries, did some work on the computer, and monitored the ongoing back-up of my system. At this point, the progress bar is only 1/5 done. It’s going to take a loooong time! I’ve got a LOT of data to transfer. I took a short nap, and then got up to do an audition. Our complex has an agreement with a local business that allows them to post their own guards on our property during the day and night for a specific reason I can’t mention here. Sometimes the guards are uniformed guards, but sometimes the guards are nothing more than regular kids just doing a job. They sit at their post all night and keep watch. In that instance, I like to check in on them to make sure they’re all right. Since it’s been warm I’ll bring them out a cold bottle of water, or just do a welfare check, since it’s so late at night. I had Roxy out on our usual late-night stroll, and as we came down the stairs to go see how the young lady was doing at her guard post, I noticed that there was a young, stunningly beautiful coyote about 10 feet behind her! She didn’t notice he was there! I clapped my hands and yelled for it to go away, which frightened the girl. She saw me chasing the coyote away. The coyote was literally just a few feet from Roxy, and they looked at each other! If that coyote would have decided to attack Roxy wouldn’t have stood a chance! The coyote was stubborn and didn’t run away very far. It went a few feet and looked back to see if I was serious. I kept chasing after it and it finally ran off. I’m sure Roxy was thinking it was just another dog. Since I keep her off-leash during our late-night walks she’s had encounters with coyotes before, but she was younger and more spry. If Roxy had been a small dog, I’m sure the coyote would have grabbed her in its mouth and run off with its prey! I could tell when the coyote looked at Roxy it was sizing her up to see if she was going to fight, or bark, or run. Because the poop scoop I have for Roxy has a spring loaded compartment, I can pull the hand mechanism and clack it loudly. The loud noise helps to scare the coyotes off when I see them. I apologized to the girl for scaring her and she said she hadn’t even noticed the coyote. The sprinkler system had just gone off in the complex so the coyote might have been looking for little pools of water on the driveway and surrounding area to have a drink. As Roxy and I continued our walk, I flashed my light beam up ahead and saw two glowing eyes up ahead staring back. It was the coyote. He hadn’t left. So I continued walking toward it, making more noise, and turned my headlap to strobe to scare it away. But it started walking towards me. Were we gonna have a throwdown? But it only walked forward far enough to make its way back to the common driveway so it could run out of the complex. Roxy and I finished our walk and headed inside. I brought the girl guard a cold bottle of water and she told me that after I went inside, the coyote came back. The company she works for anticipated this type of encounter, so they give their employees an aluminum drink tumbler filled with bolts. When they shake them briskly the noise scares the coyotes off. But there was something about that area that the coyote liked. I think he was after the water, but maybe he wanted to make a meal of the young gal. Who knows? These wildlife encounters can be unnerving because you just never know what’s on the mind of the animal. Will they scare off easily? Will they attack? Are they desperate, hungry or thirsty enough to make your life miserable? Who knows? It’s always better to play it safe. I feel sorry for them, as it’s been so hot, but you have to be careful. When I got back inside I turned my attention to dying a thin sheet of foam rubber for the eye cones for the Mahna Mahna replica Muppet I’m making. When I get the puppet and the fleece cover back from Alex in Wonderland, I’ll alter the pattern for the eye cones until they’re perfect and make the eye cones. The Labor Day weekend is almost upon us, and I’m looking forward to it!

Friday the 2nd – BUREAUCRACY, BARONE’S, AND BIANCA! – My mechanic called and said the computer part for my Mustang won’t be in until NEXT WEDNESDAY! WOW! I also spent some time on the phone with a state agency who wanted some clarification on some corporate paperwork I filled out for my corporation recently. Good grief. They had some wrong information that I needed to set them straight on. I’m shocked that this particular state government agency doesn’t have a better understanding of how the corporate structure works. But that’s bureaucracy for you! My maids came over to clean Planet Wallywood. It was still quite toasty outside. Summer was going out with a triple digit bang! Later my pal Sabrina came over and we headed to dinner at Barone’s to get some delicious Italian food. We were met by her friend Bianca who joined us for dinner. We came back home to give her a tour of Planet Wallywood. She had mentioned recently seeing Diana Ross in concert. Given Bianca’s young age I was surprised that she even knew who Diana Ross was. I remembered that I had a “Muppet Show” with Diana Ross as the special guest, so we all watched that and enjoyed it immensely!

Saturday the 3rd – SABRINA’S SURPRISE! – Since Sabrina has been getting acquainted with the films of Laurel and Hardy, I wanted to get her a special gift. I have two ceramic mugs in the likenesses of the heads of Stan and Ollie that my mom made for me in her ceramics class back in the early 70’s. I’ve treasured them for decades. Since the first Saturday of every month is “Laurel and Hardy Theatre” in Planet Wallywood, I like to use them to hold my beverage while I watch the movies. (I alternate between Stan to Ollie from month to month.) I found a set of these exact mugs on eBay (even though the paint job is a bit different) and bought them for her. Since I bought them on Wednesday I figured they wouldn’t arrive in time for her to use them for this Saturday’s movie. But the good news was, I got an “early arrival” e-mail stating that they’d be in my possession by Saturday; just in time for “Laurel and Hardy Theatre!” So we drove to my mailbox to get her present. The bad news was, the handle on the Ollie mug had broken in transit. We went to lunch at Coral Café and I pondered how I could fix the handle on the mug. After lunch we got back home and carefully looked over the broken handle. There were three main pieces, and a bunch of little chips. I threw away the chips and concentrated on repairing the handle. It had snapped away from where it connected to the top of the mug, so I got some Gorilla glue and attached the top piece back to the top of the mug. Then I took the other two pieces and glued them together and set them aside. After they cure, I’ll take the two pieces that had been repaired, and snug it back into the top and bottom areas of the handle and glue them into place. Then when the glue completely cures I’ll patch the areas where the little pieces chipped off with Magic Sculpt. After that cures I’ll sand it down, and then cover the entire handle with a thin layer of Magic Sculpt and let that cure. Magic Sculpt hardens like cement when it cures, so the handle should be very firm and robust when all is said and done. Then I can sand that down, prime it, and paint it with glossy black paint. It should look pretty good when it’s finished. Later that night we went out to Dead Tree Terrace to relax, meditate and watch stars. Sabrina saw two shooting stars, but I only saw one of them. We got back inside and got ready for “Laurel and Hardy Theatre.” I made my usual Chef Boyardee pizza, popcorn, and we filled our Stan Laurel mugs with Diet Pepsi. We watched the film “The Flying Deuces” on Blu-ray, and it was very funny. The film is fairly late in their career, but it’s still enjoyable. Sabrina’s Ollie mug will be fixed and ready in time for next month’s “Laurel and Hardy Theatre!”

Sunday the 4th – STILLLLL GOOOOOIIIING! – Just before Sabrina headed back home we went to Ernie’s Taco House for some yummy Mexican food. Then I came back home to relax and do some work on the computer. The back-up was still going strong, but was slightly less than halfway finished. Based on the transfer speed it was telling me, I computed that it should be completed by Monday evening. But the transfer speed had slowed a little bit since my initial computation, so it may not be done until sometime Tuesday night. Roxy was having another tough night, and actually fell a few times during our late-night stroll. I could tell she just couldn’t go on, so I carried her back home to rest. It was still very warm out, but it had also gotten quite humid. Later I heated up some of the goulash I bought at the store a few days ago and watched a few episodes of “The Muppet Show.” The one with Christopher Reeve as the guest star was amazing and hysterical! I had heard that from time to time, Chris Reeve would also operate some of the Muppets for certain scenes. He was in the UK working on the Superman films at the time, and he would stop in to visit the “Muppet Show” set from time to time, as he and Jim Henson were pals. So for large group scenes, rumor has it that Jim put Chris to work! Wild!

Monday the 5th – LABOR DAY 2022! – Since Monday seemed more like Sunday, I spent most of the day resting and relaxing. My computer is starting to freeze up now during the back-up. I think it may be getting overtaxed with all of the activity. The transfer is almost done, but it will most likely be Tuesday night before it’s completed. When it freezes up I just have to walk away and let it unfreeze in its own time. Luckily the freezing doesn’t seem to affect the back-up process. I had an audition that I wanted to make sure and finish before any potential computer problems, so I recorded that and sent it over to my agent. Andy and Brad, two pals from Atlanta who were in town working on a project, asked if they could stop by for a tour of Planet Wallywood. I said I’d be happy to show them around. After the tour we went to Bob’s Big Boy for dinner and had a round of delicious burgers! I came back home to nap for a bit, and then got up to write Wally’s Week. There was a gorgeous ¾ full moon in the sky, but it was a bit too humid out to spend some time on Dead Tree Terrace. I dug out the Magic Sculpt and put a thin layer all over the newly-repaired handle on the vintage Oliver Hardy mug I bought for Sabrina. I smoothed it as best as I could and set it aside to cure. In a day I’ll get some fine-grain sandpaper, smooth it some more, and then prime it and eventually paint it. I think it’ll actually turn out to be a lot stronger than it was initially. When your mug is full of ice and cold Diet Pepsi, it’s got to be robust! I fed and walked Roxy and watched the final two “Muppet Show” episodes from the fourth season before bed. The heat wave is going to wind down on Wednesday, and by Saturday it’s going to be in the 80’s with rain expected. Yup, fall is on the way. But it sure was an amazing summer!

And how was YOUR week??!!


Summertime is KOOL-AID time!

Sabrina and Spook chill out

Ready for “Laurel and Hardy Theatre” with our Stan Laurel mugs!

But the Oliver Hardy mug arrived with a broken handle…

…so I set about repairing it as best as I knew how.

This past Labor Day weekend had me remembering back 34 years ago to 1988 when my friends and I dressed up as superheroes and did a promotion at the Sioux Falls zoo for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Good times indeed! Great memories. Someday, I’ll write out the entire story and post a page about it.