If an entire month could take a ‘Mulligan’ I elect August of 2014. So many not great things happened all month long, world wide, that one might believe that they have a front row seat to the Apocalypse. Scary. I did what I could to make the best of it. I got out of town with my girlfriend.
We’re still together.
I had a real crappy show at Flappers, earlier in the month. The lesson to be gleaned from my bombing was this: Don’t be so married to your material that you forget to read the room.
The next day, Robin Williams died and I forgot that I had a crappy show. Months ago, a comedian friend posted a picture of herself and Robin Williams on FB. My comment: “I see you’ve met my dad.” Because that’s what he is to me. One of my comedy dads. With the same ‘Cats in the Cradle’ arc. Earlier on you’re really into him, he can do no wrong. Every performance is just more impressive than the last. Then your attention wanes because he’s getting old and your tastes are changing, but you’re surprised to see him pop up in this, or that. You never forget how great he is. How he has inspired your own performance, but maybe he just doesn’t stand out to you like he used to. You’re glad he’s back on TV, because it’s like watching his work come full circle, and you get to see him every week. Almost a month has gone by and I’m still stunned.
After news like that, getting out of town was a must. We camped for a few short days in Sequoia National Forest at Hume Lake. We were both very excited for this trip. We gathered gear and supplies, threw it all in a rental car and went for it. We were confronted with the notion of black bears in our camp sight, but we never got visual confirmation, just a lot of bear shit everywhere. We had flush toilets nearby, which sometimes meant late night trips in pitch darkness, a few yards away. My tiny girlfriend, who is only slightly taller than an Oompa Loompa, always thought she was hearing bears plod through our camp sight, thus ‘held it’ most nights for fear of what she might point her flashlight towards. Incredible views and beautiful land all the way through until we left and drove through Fresno. Fresno: The Town Everyone Forgot! or Fresno: Gateway to Bakersfield…Sorry if you’re from there, but it’s a miserable little burg.
Since we had no internet or cell service, we didn’t know that Ferguson, MO had grown into an even bigger and more dangerous story. Hard to know the right sentiment at this point. Most everything that needed to be said has been said, all in a 24 hour news cycle.
I said Robin Williams was one of my comedy dads. My other comedy dad, Phil Hartman received a posthumous star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. I’d never been to one of these ceremonies, and I wasn’t about to miss this. I live less than a mile away. We hopped on the Metro to Vine and walked a few short blocks. Just right out there on the sidewalk. Kevin Nealon spoke as did Phil Hartman’s best friend, Jon Lovitz. What a great honor, to another incredible talent.
Speaking of great talent, we finished off our month under the stars at The Hollywood Bowl for Volume III of John Williams and The LA Phil. We got the ALL the classics. 82 year old John Williams did 4 encores!! Are you kidding me? When am I ever going to find that prolificness?! Star Wars Main Theme, BOOM! Superman Overture, BOOM! Imperial March, BOOM! Raiders Main Theme, BOOM! Mic Drop!! He accidentally dropped the mic at the end…
I have only one show booked right now at the end of September. The 29th. I’ll be returning to Chris Putros The Crispy Show at the Universal Bar and Grill.
Drop by the website. I’m cleaning things up around here.
A couple of reflections on this month September:
September 1995 I moved to Chicago, which was life and career changing. I have lifelong friends and family in Chicago and will always call it home
September 11th, 2001, of course was a life changer for everyone. Me and cast of 12 flew in from Chicago to New York the day before. Our gig was nowhere near the excitement. We all ended up at the Javitz Center and stood on the roof watching both buildings burn. What a sight. Looking back, the events on that day seem like scenes from a Michael Bay film. Sensational and out of place. Those events gave way to the very legislation that militarized our police forces.
Doing the Bowl again this weekend with Elvis Costello and Ben Folds. Let ya know how it goes!