Tuesday, June 28, 2011


Every parent thinks their child is the cutest, most adorable, and most talented baby on the planet. Time and again, I've seen parents fawn over their perfect little children when they actually look as attractive as ground beef. Dog owners are even worse. I can't tell you the number of times people have said to me, "Isn't my dog cute?" Ladies and Gentlemen...this is not cute:
That doesn't mean to say that if this were my dog, that I would love it any less. But let's get real here. The above is not attractive. This is cute:
Now granted, I've already had the talk with Trooper and said, "Sweetie, you will never become a model because of your bottom snaggle teeth." (As a father, I believe in being realistic with my children.) "Trooper--the road of expectation is paved with disappointment." She seemed to take this news well. But despite that she needs braces for her bottom teeth, she's still pretty f-ing cute. Which brings me to the dog park.

I have recently discovered that there is a hierarchy at the dog park that has been created by some snooty dog-freaks causing my poor Trooper to develop low self-esteem issues. 
Every time we visit the dog park, there is a group of dog owners that socializes in the corner while their dogs run amuck all over the place. Now Trooper is not the most social of dogs, but she is certainly getting better. I keep encouraging her to make new friends and stop isolating. But since a dog's vocabulary is only about 150 words, I don't think "isolate" is something she understands. Nevertheless, she has made tremendous progress. She now goes up to other dogs and sniffs their butts and let's others do the same. And she's great with other dog owners. She walks right up to strangers, flashes her adorable smile and makes friends instantly.
But not with the dog park "A-List". When she waddles over to say hello, they all look at her like she is some freak and don't even give her the time of day. Mind you, I always say hello to their dogs and comment on how cute they are (even though they look hideous). But these assholes sit and gossip about everybody at the dog park and pass judgement on everyone as if they are the dog-park American Idol judges. When I walk by, I over hear them dishing the dirt on some other dog owner with a barrage of "get hers" and "did you hear what she dids". They remind me of the "Pick-A-Little" ladies from the "Music Man". 
Trooper couldn't give a shit about this. But it annoys me that this so-called dog park royalty is treating my baby like she is some common peasant! And when the dogs of the royal court start to run around and play, Trooper barks at them from the edge of the park drawing scowls from their owners as if to say, "That horrible mongrel's father ought to muzzle that hideous creature".  So I scoop Trooper up and give her a belly rub, making her the envy of all the others puppies in the park--royal or not.

So FUCK YOU dog park schmucks! My Trooper is a QUEEN! And so is her father! So get up off your fat asses and show your own dog's some love instead of passing judgement on others that are not part of your stupid club. I'm proud to be on the D-List. D for dog!
So now Trooper is going to do her affirmations in the mirror -- "I'm good enough. I'm smart enough. And dog gawnnit, people like me!"

Sunday, June 26, 2011


Last night I saw The Green Lantern in 3D. The reviews for this movie have been hideous, but I actually enjoyed myself for reasons I don't think the film makers intended.

First of all, the dialogue in this movie is so bad, you have to laugh. If someone said "you have to face your fears" one more time, I was going to throw my popcorn at the screen. Luckily, I ran into my my friend John at the theatre, and we were able to laugh ourselves silly after the movie was over.
The villain in the movie is Paralax, a giant piece of space shmootz that kind of resembles a big dust bunny with a skeleton head. It feeds on the souls of the fearful and, of course, comes to a heavily populated city to enjoy an unlimited buffet. This is where my favorite part comes in.
As the dust bunny was attacking, I kept watching the extras. Having been an extra myself in movies, I know some of the shenanigans that people will pull to get onscreen to get noticed. Or even better, get that revered "bump" from extra to "featured". It means more money and sometimes, SAG insurance. So as this attack is happening, I can practically hear the Second A.D. on the movie screaming into a bullhorn, "Okay background! Now the creature is right behind you! Run away"! And then everybody runs flailing their arms in the air towards camera making their panicked faces.

"AH! But wait! Now it's in front of you! Run the other way"! So the crowd turns around! More faces! More overacting! More work for Central Casting. 

It cracks me up when extras "act" and force me to notice them onscreen. In the Green Lantern, during the attack of the shmootz, an African American extra, literally looks right into camera and makes a hilarious "oh no she didn't" face that looks like Marla Gibbs on The Jeffersons. I kid you not.

And apparantly, Paralax has a penchant for the fearful souls of  black female busdrivers. While indiscriminately, sucking souls of many of the extras (whom I'm sure got a bump), at one point he turns his attention to this woman who was able to rush kids off the school bus and then twist her ankle as Parlax savors the thought of eating this woman's fearful soul. Of course the Green Lantern saves her, because she was "featured" and not an extra. I'll bet the Marla Gibbs woman was pissed.
So yes. The movie is filled with some of the stupidest dialogue. But the special effects are fun and the extras are HILARIOUS! So go see the movie and watch the extras.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

I love me some Debbie Reynolds. And last night on "So You Think You Can Dance", she did not disappoint. She sang every moment she could, told some great 'ole broad jokes and knew how to get in the spotlight no matter what. Atta girl Debbie!

I'm not sure all of the kids on SYTYCD really understood who Debbie Reynolds is (or was) but it was clear that some of them were blown away by her presence. Born Mary Frances Reynolds, Debbie learned to dance after being chosen by Gene Kelly in "Singin' In The Rain". At the Debbie Reynolds Rehearsal Studios on Lankershim in North Hollywood, I kept hoping I'd bump into her whenever I would go there for auditions, but alas, never did. And a good part of Debbie's life was dedicated to the preservation of Hollywood memorabilia, some of which was finally just sold at auction.

My only problem with last night's appearance, was her constant "cougaring" over some of the male dancers. She kept saying how she wanted to take them home with her, which forced me to throw up in my mouth a little. There is just something disturbing about watching an innocent "Kathy Selden" in a clip of "Singin' In The Rain" followed by a shot of the current La Reynolds, licking her chops after a male dancer just finished shaking his booty. Remember, the show is called "So You Think You Can Dance" NOT "So You Think You Can **** Debbie Reynolds".

And here is a shameless plug for my co-worker Marko!  I believe voting may be closed at this point. But if he stays on the show (and I hope he does cause he's such a good performer) please vote for him next week.
Now it's off to my own reality series--"So You Think You Can Get Out Of Bed".

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


I'm back Junk Drawer fans. Sorry I have been absent. But finding funny shit to write about has been hard. BTW- Something is up with the photo editor, so I am unable to post pics. :-(


So in the age of social media, I am embarrassed to say that I do not understand Twitter. I feel like my grandmother-- "Oh those damn kids and their rock-n-roll"! I actually have a Twitter account but don't really use it. I'm more of a Facebook kind of guy who updates his status every time he goes "big-girl-potty-sit-down". But I am intrigued by the immediacy of Twitter.

I was watching "The Voice" last night. (Side note to Christina Aguilara's stylist: please do not dress Christina like she is going to the pool at a Miami hotel. Black stretch pants, over sized T-shirt,...and will someone please buy that girl a brush!)

Anyhoo--on "The Voice" they have this backstage "Twitter Room" which is supposed to resemble a war-room of sorts simply buzzing with activity of viewers tweeting (or twatting...not good with the terminology yet) their responses to the singers. There is some girl who, with forced excitement, keeps saying to the host Carson Daly, "Ooh things are really trending in here, Carson!" Funny, but when I look at this flurry of activity in the trending room, I see a few bad, bored singers looking awkward like they are at a junior high school dance enjoying a glass of punch. My advice--scrap the "trending room" for season two--cause it's retarded.

So back to me tweeting. I think I used it once. I know that many people love twooting and twatting, but quite honestly, I haven't seen a twat in years. So I am thinking of enrolling in a class to learn about Twitter. I have to say that this lack of knowledge is really making me feel my age and I need to keep up. I guess I hate the idea that I these Twitter "followers" will be on my heels like I'm Jesus or something waiting for me to do something interesting and tweet the bible. Oh the pressure! 

And there is a whole new vocabulary. Now I am supposed to know that this "#" or "hash mark" is the magical key to "Twatland"and does something important. (There's something about the word twat that is so satisfying.) And what of this "trending"? Is this the new word for "popular". So to hide my ignorance of any of this new-fangled jargon, I am going to pretend like I know what I am talking about.

Or I suppose I could just go and read the directions on Twitter...but that would be too easy. Anyway--I may be recruiting followers soon so I can twat you.

Friday, June 10, 2011


Well it's that time of year again--Gay Pride--that joyous, yearly celebration where gay men in their 40s watch gay men in their 20s and say to themselves, "what the hell happened". Sorry to sound like Shleprock from the Flintstones, but something happened this morning that set me off.
What follows may be T.M.I. for some, so feel free to stop reading. For those of you who are continuing...I am about to talk about manscaping. I'm usually pretty good about "mowing the lawn in the southland", but being pretty busy, I am embarrassed to say that my shrubs were a bit overgrown. This morning before showering I looked down and said, "I really ought to do something about this mess". Just as I was about to pull out my weed whacker, I noticed an unusual glimmer of light coming from my nether regions. The sunlight from the bathroom window was reflecting off three giant grey pubic hairs. Henceforth I shall refer to these hairs as "The Triplets".
The Triplets presence was shocking to me. I had never really seen them before and couldn't help but notice that they looked like accents in a floral display. I couldn't believe that it had come to this. I started losing the hair on my head at 30 so I buzzed it all off. What was left quickly started turning grey. The good thing about being bald is that it creates the illusion that I am not getting older. (Of course it helps if you perform in in a 2000 seat theatre.) But the foliage by my peeper? That is the final frontier. A reminder that time does march on and that the Triplets will prevail.

But how to deal with this torment. I needed to make a decision quickly. Not that I'm planning on getting lucky or anything this weekend, but knowing that these unwelcome visitors are living in my underpants is setting my self-esteem into a spiral. So with clippers in hand, I bid farewell to the Triplets until they reappear in a month with additional friends.
However in my haste to rid these monsters from my tender loins, the clippers slipped causing me to now look like a pre-pubescent boy. So now I really look like a freak in his late-mid-forties trying to be a twink in his early twenties.

Well, the Triplets are gone, and so is everything else. A victory garden, if you will, encouraging young things to grow. But so help me...if those bitchy Triplets come back...I'm getting waxed!
In the meantime, I'm going to go to the festival knowing that I have a little secret. So if you see me this weekend and ask about the Triplets, I'm gonna open up a can 'o whoop-ass!

Thursday, June 9, 2011


Fairly recently, a Toronto couple made headlines about keeping their baby's gender a secret from the public. While this may produce a well-integrated and stable child according to some...it's a pain in the ass for entertainers like myself.
While doing Pat E. Cake yesterday, I went up to an African American child who was sitting with its family during the cake decorating part of the party. The child was around 4 years old had the cutest pigtails and was wearing a birthday button that said "Jaydin". So I said, "Well happy birthday Princess Jaydin!"

The mother immediately shot me daggers and said, "It's PRINCE Jaydin. PRINCE!!!" Embarrassed, I rebounded and made some sort of a lame joke about not being able to grow beautiful...uh...handsome pigtails myself except for on my back. They didn't think it was funny and poor Jaydin decided to forego the cake-judging and just started eating. I tried to make up for my faux-pas later by singing the Mickey Mouse closing song to the dad--"Why? Because we like you! M-O-U-S-E." He clearly didn't like me, and I'm sure wanted me to "F-U-C-K-O-F-F"!
Ladies and Gentlemen, on behalf of audience participatory entertainers all over the world, would you please just give us a hint as to weather your child is a boy or a girl?! When a bald man with a cake on his head comes up to your child to wish him/her/it a happy birthday and he asks the child's name...please do not reply "Sanoosh". When I am looking at you with panic in my eyes trying to assign the title of Prince,  Princess, or Transgendercess, don't tell me your child's name is "Ping"! And for God's sake, when I am trying to determine what the hell your child is wearing so I don't have to refer to your baby as "It", would you please just throw me a freakin' bone and not tell me your child's name is "Fire Walker"!

Now granted, many people think my nephew Barrett is a girl because he is so pretty and loves flowers. But he is no tranny-baby. He is most definitely a boy and his mother (or I) will be the first to correct you in a non-embarrassing way.
But to get mad at poor Pat E. Cake, because you took your little boy to the Bibbity-Bobbity-Boutique to get glitter in his hair so he looks like Snookie for Chrissake, is downright unfair!
I will say that 99% of the children at the party can easily be determined to be a boy or a girl. But why is it always that damn 1% that has defiant parents who have an email complaint ready to go with one finger on the "send" button. Don't get me wrong here. If parents want to raise their child in a genderless environment, more power to them. And my heart goes out to those families who have children that are truly trapped in the body of the opposite sex.  But parents...if gender identity is an issue for your family, don't cause unnecessary embarrassment for your child by assuming silly entertainers like myself can instantly determine the sex of your child. Please don't crucify the birthday clown! 

Holy shit! I just called myself a birthday clown. All these years of acting training and it's come to this. Oh what the hell! I'm working birthday clown who entertains non-gender specific children. Talk about a niche.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


As much as I enjoyed my trip, one of the best parts happened when I walked through my front door last night. There is NOTHING...and I mean NOTHING...like the greeting from two excited animals after you've been away for awhile. 
Trooper came hopping down the stairs and immediately started jumping all over me. Chester followed, and being older and wiser, gave me a look that said, "It's about damn time" before leaping into my arms and slathering my bald head with his scratchy tongue. The whole trip home, I was looking forward to seeing my babies and they did not disappoint! 

The pet sitter, Rachel, did a FANTASTIC job!!! If you are going out of town, I highly recommend The Pet Staff. She left me detailed report cards on my kitchen table of each and every visit, and checked off all the things that she did. Incredible.

The only thing I wish I didn't come home to was discovered as I was giving Trooper her usual belly rub. I noticed her tummy was a bit red. When she rolled over...sure enough...FLEAS! Ahhhhhhhhhhh! And I take full responsibility. I was lazy in administering her Frontline flea treatment before I left. So I went into high velocity anti-flea mode, went over every inch with her flea comb, vacuumed and destroyed those suckers. Plus, she got her Frontline Plus which also destroys eggs. Chester seems to be fine, but I'm keeping a close watch on him too. Ugh. So disgusting. Especially after my friend (and host) George went on and on about his fear of bedbugs. 


So today, it's back to playing Patrick Edward Cake (Pat E. Cake) the whacky baker of Main Street. I love doing this role because I get to really work closely with the kids. If you don't know, the show is called "My Disneyland Birthday Party". Pat E. Cake has prepared individual birthday cakes for everyone, but didn't have time to decorate them. So he invites everyone to decorate their very own cake with the best one winning a prize. But of course since it's Disneyland, everyone is a winner and the special guests, Mickey and Minnie, crash the party for a photo session.
Doing Pat E. Cake taught me a very valuable lesson in working with children. When I was in grade school, we used to take school field trips to see children's theatre at various venues in Chicago. I remember once going to see a production of the "Wizard of Oz" and getting to meet the actors afterwards. I got to meet the witch and was so excited to find out that she was really nice. But more importantly, she took the time to hear what I had to say. That moment stuck with me. Of course, when I got on the bus and I told my teacher I got to meet the witch, she said, "Well you're lucky she didn't cook you in her cauldron and EAT you!!!" (That was years of therapy right there. Thank you public school system.) But I remembered how the actress playing the witch, got down so I could look her in the eye and how she let me express myself.

In doing this role, I've learned that children do not want to be talked down to or talked over. They want to be validated and heard. So that is why, when doing Pat E. Cake, I try to recreate the experience the "witch" had on me by connecting with every child in the birthday party. It's pretty magical when a child comes in, not knowing what to expect, and then showering you with hugs because you provided them with such joy. It makes me feel good that I can create a memorable experience for these kids. And perhaps one day, when someone is writing their blog entry, they'll say, "When I was a kid, this crazy bald guy with a birthday cake on his head made me feel so special." A bit corny I know. But sometimes we change the world with baby steps.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


The weather in New York has been spectacular! For my final full day, I strolled around the city and met several friends. The day started by traveling down to the East Village to join my friend George P. for a delicious breakfast at the Clinton Street Bakery. Incredible!
It was interesting to be back in the East Village and see how it has developed. When I used to go down there in 1985 during my internship from college, it was a dangerous neighborhood littered with needles and crack viles. More than a few times a found myself singing songs from rent.
Being there took me back to my wild days from 1986-1989. The clubs were hopping back then and one of the best was The Saint. I only went there once and I'll never forget it. The inside housed a giant planetarium dome with projected images as the pulsing crowd would dance beneath. That's all I can write here because what happened at the Saint, stayed at the Saint. It's now a bank. See below.
Met my old pal and fellow Happy Days swing, Jackie, for a little stroll in Columbus Circle and had a blast talking about the show.

Ate dinner with my buddy Kenny at Rafaella's in Chelsea.

Finally went to the bar Industry on 52nd street where I met Aladdin folk - Lance (former Jafar), Paul (Maintenance Choreographer), Sandy (Stage Manager) and Anne (former Ensemble Member). Anne was singing with a few other folks and we had a great great time listening to some amazing singers.

So now it's time to say so long New York. After 5 shows, incredible food and reminiscing about my old home, it's time to head back to my life in Los Angeles. I will not let so much time lapse again between visits. But before I go...I still need to hunt down those cold sesame noodles.

Monday, June 6, 2011


Had brunch this morning at Elsewhere on 43rd street with my college friends.
Then it was off to more flea markets on 23rd Street where we encountered more hideous fur.
Then it was off to the High Line Park for a stroll.
Then to Chelsea Market for some crepes with Nutella and banana.
Then off to see "The Normal Heart"


I first saw The Normal Heart in 1985 at the Public Theatre and felt shell-shocked after it was over. When I left the theatre it was like going back out into the war-zone. This powerful Broadway revival packed a huge punch and has interestingly become a period piece. It perfectly captured the period of uncertainty when AIDS first hit 30 years ago and made me appreciate how far we have come. And yet it still had the urgency of a call-to-arms for a new generation set in complacency. The performances and direction were incredible and I'm so grateful I saw what was a tremendously powerful event.

What sucked though was the "Talk Back" after the show when two Broadway actors-Gavin Creel and Rory O'Malley - neither of which are in the show-promoted their own Broadway activism agenda instead of focusing in on the show we had just witnessed. I couldn't give a shit about them telling us to "get involved". With WHAT?!! I raised my hand to refocus the conversation back to the play, but before I could speak, the talk-back wrapped up. AHHHHH! I was so pissed that these people completely missed the point. I almost felt like the character of Ned Weeks in the play and wanted to scream "What the hell is the matter with you people?"

Anyway...I calmed down after I enjoyed some delicious sushi afterwards.

Two more days in New York!

Sunday, June 5, 2011


Went to the 44th Street and 39th Street Flea Markets today. The gorgeous weather brought out many vendors selling their wares. But for some reason, there was an abundance of odd fur items. So of course I had to try them on.
Fur Hat.
 Fur Coat.
 Fur Purse.
 Fur Apron.
Yes. I know fur is terrible. I didn't buy any. Just tried it on so relax.
George's Fabulous New Purchase
 George twirls

Among the many things I love about NYC are the specialty food shops. George and I got some halavah at the International Food Market on 9th Avenue.


Saw the Playwrights Horizons production "The Shaggs: Philosophy of the World". Not my cup of tea although the tickets were free. The second act was better than the first but I found it difficult to sit through this musical about a sister trio who recorded a bad album.

I had never seen this show before and boy am I glad I did. What a great show. And these kids are INSANELY talented. The boy who played Billy was an incredible dancer and a great actor. So enjoyable and once again...I wept. I'm such a sap.

Meeting college friends for brunch tomorrow.