Birthday Fun for EVERYONE!
Well, for me and April at least. Screw the rest of you! :)
I apologize for not getting a post up sooner. Hell, this won't even be the post I wanted to make for you. There were lots of storms around here in my absense and apparently that fooked up some of the dial-up lines I'm using. Been screwing around forever today trying to get my damned e-mails read! GGGrrrrrrrr!
Anyway, I'll have lots to share with you shortly. Until then, please take a gander at this lovely little card Ma made for me.
Among the Penguinis is some kind of sea urchin that Kamalani found. Very nice!
More later. Too tired to do anything else.
Time to Par-Tay
Sunday I had a booking in the early afternoon, which completed a Friday through Sunday round of gigs for me late in May. May bookings are usually very scarce and I seemed to have a pretty decent month of May this year. So that has cheered me up considerably. I like knowing I don't have to scramble to pay rent & other bills ya know?
I'm also pretty pleased because this means I have some spending cash for my BIRTHDAY TRIP, which I'm currently on as you're reading this.
Sunday night found me and April heading to the greater Cincinnati area. (I am writing this actually on Sunday before we leave so pardon all the tense switches and the lack of actual info to share. )
We went to the Cincinnati Zoo last year and plan on returning again this year if time allows. They have Little Blue Penguins there and they're too adorable to see just once. However the trip will be filled with many things I've never done before and that's the really fun part for me.
We'll be heading to Kings Island for thrill ride fun. Cedar Point was just a bit out of reach financially for us this time around and since I've never been to Kings Island it seemed more than a worthy substitute. If it was good enough for the Brady Bunch, it will be good enough for me!
We also plan on heading into...KENTUCKY (Lord help us) to check out the Newport Aquarium. There, we'll see even more penguin goodness. Apparently they have an exhibit very much like the one at the St. Louis Zoo (my current all-time favorite penguin display). Naturally there are many other wonderful critters to enjoy and I can't wait to see the place.
If all goes well we may even see a few other things. I'd like to stop off and visit my dad's grave and maybe even gamble a little bit at a casino or something. No matter what I'll have lots of stuff to tell you about when I return.
I'll either post a Ten Things Tuesday list when I get back late Tuesday OR simply make a "Wednesday Edition" of the list. I'll decide when the time comes.
On Sunday morning I also got another bit of El Rey news and plan on compiling a few El Rey posts very soon. I've been in touch with Bob Martello, who worked at the club and has many a story to share. I consider myself very fortunate to have begun to make acquaintance with a few of the family members and I'm looking very forward to not only expanding my collection of memorabilia, but expanding my knowledge of life in Searchlight during the time of the El Rey. This is all too exciting for me!
Anyway, you're about as up to date as I can get without actually having a computer with me to update you with. If you need me, I'll be ogling penguins or barfing up corn dogs from the top of a roller coaster.
As my new link partner, Victoria, would say, Ciao!
I Love My "Virtual Friends"
Not only did I receive a MOST excellent Louie Louie CD (Along with ORIGINAL artwork!) from my friend Eric on Saturday, but I also received a rather adorable package from Golfwidow.
Inside were hoops & yoyo, two...uh...critters from Hallmark. I've no idea what they are. I just know that they made me smile and that I like that I like them very much.
I'm trying to decide just where such creatures should live. Lord knows that there's always room for such things in Andy Land. I just am not sure where that room is right now. Maybe they'll accompany me and April to Cincinnati to see some penguins, ride some rides, and have a great time.
No matter what, I am very thankful for Golfwidow's friendship, her thoughts of me on my birthday, and for being able to read her most excellent blog every day.
I'd send her a thank you gift, but she already has every piece of Andy/Penguin swag ever made. I hope I get famous some day. I'd sure like her to make a little cash by selling all that crap!
I've Been Thinkin' About Some Linkin'
Have I mentioned before how much I enjoy reading Gordon's blog? Yes, of course I have! If you haven't checked it out do so some time soon.
He writes a lot of things that are a bit "specific", as in reviews of new Doctor Who episodes, comics, and the X-Men movie, but he does them so very well it doesn't matter if you're not in the genre club. He's also a funny lad with a lot of good takes on the world that are worth reading. Of course, he is always kind enough to toss me a few plugs from time to time and in this instance he made sure to mention my upcoming birthday. If for no other reason he deserves a click from you.
E-Pauly is also one of my favorite sites. Sure it is a bit MAN-CENTRIC, but he is a lot like myself in that he tries to explain to the women why we men are the way we are in order to help them out.
See, we'll never really change. We will adapt to get laid, but once the lady is gone we're back to our old, happy & disgusting selves. Paul does a great deal to make the things we do make sense to the ones who try to make sense of it all, but really just complicate things even more.
He also is always ready to reprint some of my humor columns as well as repost my current Ten Things Tuesday list. Do give him a try and don't let all the photos of hot Canadian bartendresses fool you. Those are all taken for scientific study and not for sexual gratification.
Lastly, I must give some big thanks to Eric of LouieLouie.net and the Louie Louie Blog. Not only is he a big friend of Andy Land and of my work, but he is a good friend that I hope to actually meet in person one day soon.
He's been working on a Louie Louie documentary for some time now and it will be the definitive rock n' roll documentary, if not the go-to work if you want all of the CORRECT information about the history of Louie Louie.
Over the years we've kept contact with one another about our silly habits and have shared a few Louie stories and versions along the way. He has been kind enough to send me MANY versions of the song from out of the blue and I'm always appreciative of the gifts.
Today, I received a Louie Louie birthday present. To protect the innocent I'll just say that the mp3 player in my car will be buzzing wildly with the same damn three chords al the way to Cincinnati & back when I go on my little birthday trip tomorrow night.
Looks like I need to come up with some suitably annoying thank you gift for the guy. I wonder if he likes penguins.
Thanks again Eric! You ROCK!
Perhaps the BEST Thing About Memorial Day
With the upcoming arrival of the sentimental, but otherwise useless holiday known as Memorial Day* comes a couple of most excellent and noteworthy things. The first is, of course, MY BIRTHDAY (May 30th, the one TRUE Memorial Day). The second, and possibly even MORE fun than my birthday is the return of nature's perfect food...
The Hamburger Cake!
Loyal readers (both of you) may recall that I mentioned this wonderful creation last year
and ate the whole damn thing before I could take a photo of one. Well this year, sensing I needed content for this crappy old blog, remembered to snap a few pics before tasting the sweet wonder and joyous majesty of the Hamburger Cake.
I never had one as a kid and found these at my local Jewel food store while living in Park Ridge some time back in the 1990s. They are really only readily available during the summer time. I used to be able to buy two sizes of Hamburger Cake, with my preferred cake being the smaller of the two. I like that one better because the size of it makes it look even more like an actual hamburger. These days, I rarely find the smaller cakes.
Maybe it is just the silliness of the thing. It could be that I feel like a kid when I am eating one. All I know is that few things make me as happy as knowing there's a hamburger cake in my fridge waiting for me.
One year, April made one for me from scratch. I'll find some photos of it and post them here. Of course, I expect you won't see them until next year around this time.*I say useless because aside from a few parades and speeches, most every damn American fails to remember any war dead and takes the opportunity to party down and enjoy yet ANOTHER day off work. It is really quite insulting. Just another way we here in the states have taken a well-intentioned idea and found a way to ruin it somehow.
A Sprained Chest?
I was relaying this story to an acrobat/circus friend of mine the other day and I thought I'd share it here. I suppose I should wait until August when I'd approach both my blogiversary and the anniversary of this "historic" day in my life (August 24, 1988). But, since I am thinking about it now and don't feel like waiting, you get it today.
What you are looking at is the front of the t-shirt made by the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Clown College class of 1988. I wore the ever-living hell out of all my shirts and they're all pretty faded and/or stained these days.
The writing is in Japanese because my year at the college was the year that Ringling launched a Japanese version of the touring show as well as a sort of hybrid circus school/business school in Japan. Our class had about 4 or 5 students from Japan and it seemed only fitting to commemorate this in the t-shirt.
The artwork was done by fellow classmate, Eric "EZ" Zander. If there was anyone more suited and destined to be a circus clown than Eric I'd like to know who the hell this person was. If I'm remembering correctly, he'd wanted to go to Ringling Clown College since his early 20s and finally got in when he turned 39, a rarity for the institution. I may have his age wrong. If he reads this I'm sure he'll correct me and accept my apology.
The excellent cartoons depict many of the things we all had to learn while at the school. If you look at the shirt you'll see a little bit of what our class schedule was like. We actually had to learn things like how to fall off of a ladder & hit your friend in the face with a broom. It was actually kind of fun.
One thing represented in this photo was not exactly something we were taught. That is the image found in the top center section of the shirt.
See that clown crashing into a giant ball? That's me. The object I'm crashing into? A traditional circus prop called a rolling globe. Rolling globes are actually among the easiest of circus skills to learn and I had no problem learning the technique and staying up on the thing.
We were taught certain skills at Clown College based upon the upcoming needs of the touring show and would be chosen for the show based upon a number of criteria, including how well we performed the skills we were taught. That year the rolling globe was on the list as the circus wanted to have a massive gag in the ring that would mimic the board game, Mouse Trap. I learned the globe pretty easily and it was not too long before they were escalating the degree of difficulty of the things I would learn and perhaps play an integral role in the graduation show. As it happened, "escalate" was the appropriate word.
AT one point in the Mouse Trap gag, someone on a globe was to walk up a ramp while on the globe. Learning this was not all that difficult. I walked up and down a simple inclined ramp, turn around, and head back down with some ease and dexterity. What proved to be my, uh..."downfall" was when we were asked to walk up the ramp, facing forward, and then walk backwards down the ramp while still facing forward.
I made it up the ramp with no problem and got about half-way down the ramp rather slowly when I lost my footing, the globe rolled quickly under me and I came crashing down on top of the damned thing.
In actuality, I slammed down onto the globe, bounced off and crashed onto the mat below, causing the large, heavy, Fiberglas globe to follow and crash onto me. I was almost knocked out completely. The sound was most amazing from what I can recall.
Truthfully I don't recall much. Other than what I described my only other vivid memories at the time were...
A complete loss of breath
"Seeing" the veins in my eyes as they seemingly popped out of my head
Bulgarian acrobat, Dinko Dimetrev Dinov (There's a name you don't forget, but you have no idea how to spell), slapping my face and repeatedly saying, "Andy! You've got to rrremember to brrreathe. Are you stopping wit the breathing? Vat did I just tell you about rrremembering to brrreathe?"
Lots of noise and anxious behavior followed. I was carted off to the hospital and waited for a long time to find out what sort of damage I caused. I found out later that there were some short-lived rumors that I had died. Steve Smith (Clown College dean), Dinko, and some other circus veterans in attendance assumed that at the very least I had a crushed sternum and possibly a punctured kidney. All I knew is that I hurt myself.
Eventually the doctor came out and did a very brief exam. I peed in a cup and never got any sort of X-rays or anything. I guess by the time the doctor showed up I was in considerably less pain than initially (Time heals all wounds. ya know.) and he didn't find any reason to think I had broken anything important. Then he gave me a prescription for some very large and completely INEFFECTIVE pain pills and told me I could go. He hadn't even told me what was wrong.
I went ahead and asked him what sort of injury I had, as I was still in a lot of pain. He simply told me I had a very bad sprain.
"A sprain", I asked, "What exactly did I sprain?"
"Everything that hurts."
So in effect I had a sprained chest. Hell I had a sprained everything.
I went back to class, took the next day off, and was back in the game soon thereafter. I got back on the globes to "conquer fear" and that sort of thing, but I had no intentions of becoming THE guy in the Mouse Trap gag. I even walked a globe onto a ramp again, but I was not about to become a rolling globe guy after that. No biggie. Those damn things are too bulky to carry anyways and they really are a one-trick prop.
The image on the t-shirt is not, however, the original rendering of my disaster. Eric, who was there when I fell, took it upon himself to make a little get well card for me and had everyone sign it on the back. I laughed my ass off then (which hurt a lot, let me add) and I still laugh at it today. He got all sorts of details in there just right. My little pony tail, my multi-colored Converse shoes, the stupid and somewhat appropriate, "Juggle til ya drop" slogan I'd written on the side of those shoes - it's all there. I believe he even got the colors of the cursed globe right. He damn well got the impact right.
Ten Things Tuesday: Good Things About Turning 36
"36" is the first number in "36-24-36".
Everyone older than you actually believes that you are still young.
There are relatively few gag gifts for a 36 year old.
You can save on your energy bill by using the candles on your birthday cake for reading and cooking.
You don't care what people think about you because nobody IS thinking about you.
You're still 4 years away from being told, "You look good...for your age."
It will be YEARS before anyone notices your Parkinson's or Alzheimer's symptoms.
You have a ways to go before you mysteriously receive AARP info in the mail.
Celebrate your 36th birthday by sleeping with two 18 year old girls.
X-Ray vision and super-human strength.
I know, I know. I'm just kidding.
There are no good things about turning 36.
7 Shopping days left til my birthday!
Funny What You Find When You're Looking for Yourself
Of course if anyone was looking for me between Saturday & Sunday they'd have found me in Wisconsin. First off, I was in Jefferson, WI for a stand-up comedy gig. The following day had me surrounded by crazed Norwegains at Stoughton's Syttende Mai Festival.
However if anyone was looking for me elsewhere then you certainly could have found me, or some sort of "me substitutes" on the web. Here are some interesting links that popped up while doing a little ego-surfing the other day.
One thing was a blog from someone who wanted to see my show in Negaunee, Michigan, but didn't have any cash. I'm assuming this guy knows some of my family or something. Of course, I've no idea if he did in fact get to see the show. Ah, these mysteries.
Another seems to be meant for some other Andy Martello, because I can't for the life of me figure out why I would give a damn about getting involved in some sort of political debate. That being said, check out, "Paging Andy Martello" and see if you have any better luck figuring out who this guy is talking to.
Regardless of the reason, a mention of my name gets a shameless plug or a link in return. I'm even up for a full-on link exchange should these folks come track me down. That's what a good blog-whore does.
There was also a new post all about me at Glenn Bishop's blog. He blogged about me the same day I blogged about him. Our blogs need to get a freakin' room already!
The Magical World of Glenn Bishop
Glenn Bishop, also known as "Bish the Magish" is a long-time friend of mine. He is a second generation magician & hypnotist, currently living in the St. Louis area.
Back when he lived in the Chicago area we worked together on several occasions. I'm fairly certain our paths first crossed at a New Year's Eve gig in the northern suburbs some time around 1988. Back then he had a cable access program called the "Magical World of Glenn Bishop". The show featured his own magic and illusions, guest performers, and a lot of horsing around. I appeared on the show a few times and still have some of the tape to prove it. It will take a lot of alcohol or sexual favors (or both!) for me to send it out, so all you Andy Martello collector's out there, keep that in mind!
Glenn has always had a lot of big plans and ideas about marketing & selling entertainment acts & products. He's also a good friend with a good act. I've not been able to see his hypnosis show in all these years, but I hear he does that program to delighted audiences more than anything else these days.
I mention Glenn because I found out he has a blog. Now if you are a fan of magic, love stories about show business, enjoy photos of CLASSIC performers, and are genuinely interested in reading some good material about all of the above you should definitely check out his blog. If you know where to look you'll even find a mention about little old me!
Glenn recently posted about a show we did together at an old theatre in Viroqua, WI. I'm all but certain it was the Temple Theatre. It was a cool theatre in dire need of some love and attention (translation: MONEY) for repairs. In days past it housed some of the greats of Vaudeville. If I am thinking of the right place, it seems that there has been some love and money spent there since then and that makes me very happy.
Viroqua was the home of the National (or possibly the WORLD) Ski-Jumping Championships and that single event was the biggest draw that has ever played there before or since our little show. Naturally our show (we actually had two scheduled that weekend) was scheduled the exact weekend of the ski-jumping. To make things even more fun, we had to drive through an awful snowstorm to get there, all to find out we were destined to have a minimalist crowd for both of our shows. We were professionals. We were ready to bring on the goods, nonetheless.
My fondest memory of this show had nothing to do with my actual performing on stage. Rather, I enjoyed visiting Dan Mott, one time producer of Glenn's TV show and current host of his own radio program in Viroqua. Dan helped put together this theatre show and brought the performers on the radio with him to promote the program, answer calls, and so on.
I, being a comedian (translation: ASSHOLE), couldn't resist the urge to have some fun at the expense of the competing ski-jumping championship. During one of my segments I broke in with a special announcement of paramount importance. Out of the blue I announced on the radio that the championships were, quite suddenly, CANCELLED! Everyone in the studio was busting out in hysterics as I rattled on some improvised tale about there being, "just too much snow to carry on such a silly event." It was pretty funny.
Of course, nobody told me that the ski-jumpers had spent about ten grand in advertising at the station (We spent less...translation: ZERO) and I caused something of a minor panic for a brief amount of time. Of course I knew that most folks could figure out I was joking, especially after I made a point of spelling it out to everyone later on in the show. Hey, I was just out for a laugh.
The two shows went pretty well and there was about 1/2 the theatre filled each time. We all enjoyed some friendly people, home cooked meals, a little pocket change, two long drives, and some good times.
Please stop by Glenn's site and say HI. Check out some of his DVDs if you're into learning a few card tricks or just like magic. Hey, you can even leave a comment on the Viroqua post and comment about how devastatingly handsome I am. I, the "top comedy juggler", am the really fuzzy looking one in the tuxedo. He really needs a better scanner, if not a better camera. LOL!
It's Hailing Outside and There Are Links EVERYWHERE!
As I write this (being written on May 17th), hail the size of frozen peas is landing outside my window. I suppose I should turn off the old computer, but I've got to blog, dammit!
So here are some recent links and news tidbits worth mentioning.
Michael Manning was kind enough to not only play my Plate Spinning Game, but he also gave a big ole plug for the game, my main site, and my blog in the process. He was even kind enough to briefly review the game and foolishly tell people I was a funny guy with a good sense of humor. That should be more than enough reason for me to mention his name here. But wait! There's more!
This Sunday, Mr. Manning will be posting an interview with good friend, fellow blogger, and local Buzz Kilman look-a-like, Bud Buckley. I doubt the interview will feature commentary from Bud about how much he enjoyed my performance in Robert Altman's "The Company". It will more likely feature discussions about the creative process, the entertainment business, and blah-blah-blah. Either way you should read it. I know I will, and I don't read anything.
I'm almost positive I forgot to thank Pammy from Lollygaggin' for plugging two of my recent humorous posts. Whether I forgot or not, let me just ease my troubled mind by thanking her now (or again).
Do you like the "alternative" comedy scene in the Chicago area? If so, then you should read the reviews and news found at Five Drink Minimum. Really, so far as I know, the "alternative" comedy scene is the open mic rooms and the rooms that have a cover charge & mysteriously can't afford to pay the comics. But there are many excellent new comedians to be found and this blog is a great way to learn about them.
Another new link partner, though not all that new to blog readers who are "in the know", is the lovely Lisa, of Lisa B In Da City. I love the look of her blog and she really has some cool things to occupy your online time. So if you haven't seen her blog, give it a go.
Much to my surprise, E-Pauly reprinted my Ten Things Tuesday birthday wish list. With his MASSIVE readership, there may actually be some hope I'll get some of those goodies. Very cool!
Time for a Little Harmless Fun
I don't have time for a big update today so I'll just leave you with a stupid little game that the guys will appreciate and the women will cry to Oprah about later. I found this at the site of link partner, 4AllFun. Enjoy and be discreet!
I'll have some more El Rey updates and other Andy nonsense very soon!
Ten Things Tuesday: Things I Want for My Birthday (May 30, 2006)
- Cash (Seriously, this is really the only thing I can ALWAYS use and I ALWAYS need!)
- Tom Tom (or some considerably more affordable GPS device for my car)
- A Family Tree/Genealogy search. Don't know how much those things cost or how/where to start, but I've got to find out if we're related to the El Rey Resort Martellos. Speaking of the El Rey...
- A $25.00 Poker Chip (or ANY poker chip with Willie's picture on it)
- Either (or both) of these sets of El Rey Casino dice
- More brochures or NEW Plate Spinning Brochures (Yeah, it's another plea for cash)
- Level 1 Hosting Account at Streamhoster
- A new garment bag. Mine is getting mighty shaggy. My parents gave it to me after Clown College, so I've had it a LONG time. I need something more durable and suitable for air travel.
- A Custom Blog Template/Skin for Andy Land (and/or a NEW El Rey Casino blog)
- Gift Certificates or prepaid set-up fees at a self publishing site (Gift certificates aren't cash, right?) Of course, Golfwidow suggested I try Lulu, which may actually be FREE. So, unless you more schooled writerly types insist on some other place, use this as an alternate...
- A Wheeled Craft Tote (or something similar without all the pen spaces and stuff.). Depending upon the size I'm thinking something like this can be my new prop bag. I need to take some measurements and see if it fits in my car and can hold my props. Aw hell, a gift certificate to a craft store would work. LOL!
By the way, I really have no expectations of blog readers buying me gifts. I just really didn't feel like writing a funny list this week and since I do have family members that read this blog and may or may not be planning on gifts for me, I figured, "What the hell!". These are also things that I would not likely be getting on my own, at least not immediately. I also like things like nice cards, silly penguin gifts, and candy. ;)
Labels: Casino Collectibles
I Changed Their Diapers!!! EEEWWWWWWW!
This is my other neice, Gemma.
They are adorable.
They are mighty proud of, if not unusually fascinated by their breasts.
They also didn't believe me when I said I'd post boob shots on my blog.
I was going to tell you all about my day with them in Marquette.
Like our trip to the park,
The beautiful lake,
Frolicking on the playground equipment.
But at one point we ended up at a porn shop.
(Because no trip to a porn shop is complete without your uncle from Chicago in attendance.)
We bumped into some of their friends at the porn shop.
I realized that after randomly encountering friends of my neices...
While shopping for porn with my neices...
Suddenly they were no longer my neices.
They were my "neices".
And you wouldn't want to hear about that.
Agony, Ecstasy, Etc.
Normally I'd be in a much better mood on a day when I had two gigs. Yesterday found me performing two shows, one at a Catholic school, and one at a far south side Lions Club event. I was and am still extremely grateful for the work and, aside from the amount of time was stuck in traffic, I really only had one complaint about the day.
The first booking, in the morning at the Chicago area Catholic school, was quite frustrating. I did a very good show so far as I could tell, but the audience tried my patience considerably. All grades up through 8th grade were in attendance and since my show has appeal for all ages there was no problem for me. However, the kids from about 6th grade on up took it upon themselves to be "too cool for school"
and looked at the program as an excuse to get out of class and nothing more.
There was lots of background noise, surface chatter, and a total lack of respect for the person performing the show, if not the folks around them who were genuinely interested in seeing the show. These things happen, more frequently every year I'm sorry to say. I don't really take it personally as there's only so much I can do to maintain a level of sanity within the situation, which I did very well in this case. I mean, it is the fault of the parents for not teaching their children some etiquette or manners, and certainly a problem of the faculty for not maintaining order within their school parameters.
A lot of performers fail to realize that they can simply stop the show and explain to the students that their time could be better spent back in the classroom instead of enjoying the presentation their school chose for them to watch. That usually stops the nonsense. Unfortunately I had to make several such stops along the way.
The truly frustrating part was that NONE
of the faulty, no teachers, nuns, nobody did anything to either discipline nor stop the students from acting out. There was nobody taking the time to reminded the classes that they are representing their school in a poor manner. Noone removed any of the more serious trouble-makers. Not a soul in this Catholic school felt it necessary to show any sort of authority in any way. THAT
was disturbing to me.
At one point I actually made some of he teachers go into the stands to sit among their students (something that they should have been doing in the first place) in order to be "on the scene" and police the situation better. This quieted the crowd initially, but the nonsense started up almost immediately afterwards and what did the teachers do? NOTHING!
I shudder to see what the classrooms are like.
I was fortunate enough not to attend any Catholic schools as a kid, but I sure have worked at many of them in the last 21 years. I usually look forward to these places as I know that the students will be well behaved for fear of Sister Mary Confusing
!) reigning hell upon them. I wasn't asking for a full-on holy ass-kicking. A "SHHH!"
would have been nice, though.
Yesterday, I saw just one more example of the AWFUL
parenting present today. Behavior like this starts at home.
I was also privy to just how little authority the educators have anymore within the schools. I'm sure this has a lot to do with frivolous lawsuits, the need to coddle kids, promote self esteem above all else, and of course the ever-present budget cuts. However this also has a lot to do with the quality of the teachers inside these schools. I know that it is a very difficult profession, filled with challenges at all levels. Many of these challenges , coupled with the large amount of politics involved among the administration and the parents are responsible for teachers being broken to the point of total ambivalence, as in yesterday. Still, you knew what the job entailed when you made the decision to go into a thankless profession with precious few benefits and even less pay. Suck it up and get control of your students. I needed the money, but I'm not the one being paid to take crap from kids. That would be YOUR
Anyway, after the show, feeling considerably angry and something less than proud of my ability to make a living that day, I did the only logical thing that could brighten my day and raise my spirits.
I was in the neighborhood.
I'm sure I'll have more to tell you about Superdawg later. Just know that I felt all better afterwards!
Links, News, & Thanks
The lovely, talented, and extremely busy Bitchitude was kind enough to post a picture of her "thank you penguin", which arrived in Hawaii recently. You may recall that she was among the five guest bloggers during last month's trip to Las Vegas. The penguins went out to all the participants since I've got no cash to hand out for such things.
Another guest blogger kind enough to mention me in recent days is Arizona's finest, Jade. She's all bent out of shape (quite actually...back injury) and hasn't been able to read or do much of anything lately. Somehow, she managed to put pluggin' my blog on her list of things to do and I am always thankful for the extra traffic. Maybe some of you can go wish her well as she's in a lot of pain right now and believe me, back pain sucks royal ass!
Speaking of sucking royal ass, I forgot to mention on Monday that my weight has not changed since the previous week. However, I seem to have shed a couple of pounds since Monday, thanks to a lot of bike riding. With a little luck and a little work I should be back to the 220 mark by next Monday.
What doesn't suck royal ass is the e-pauly blog, which also has been kind enough to reprint yesterday's Ten Things Tuesday list. I also hear there are photos of breasts and tales of drunken debauchery to be found there. COOL!
Spent the day with my lovely wife visiting two different zoos. I was at the Racine Zoo and the Milwaukee Zoo. I should have some photos to share later.
We also bought two new fish today. I know that posting about buying goldfish is the very reason why blogs are completely useless, but we were mildly traumatized by the death of our 3+ year old goldfish, Rick, Monday night. Naturally we had to overcompensate for the loss and two new fish seemed to be the sensible solution. I suggested an evening of hot sex, but the fish-buying thing made more sense I guess.
I also have some updates on my quest for more info on the El Rey Casino, a report on my visit to Searchlight, Nevada, some other stories from Las Vegas, and continuing updates on my complete lack of a career. So stay tuned and please tell all the readers that used to come here all the time to come the hell back here!
Ten Things Tuesday: Things Found in Gene Shalit's Moustache
Weapons of Mass Destruction
The Lost Chord
The Ark of the Covenant
The Dead Sea Scrolls
You Should Smell My Hair
Every year aound this time I get a chance to catch up with some good friends of mine. Two of them are from Michigan and one is kind of local to me, but I don't get to see him that often. All of these guys I met because of my enjoyment of cigars and all of these guys are primarily pipe smokers now.
Of the three pipe smokers, two of them are excellent pipe makers. The third is now a seller of fine briar pipes. They are all in town for the Chicago Pipe Collectors Show.
Kirk Bosi is a fun guy. He has always reminded me of Norm from "Cheers". He works at an area high school and has arranged a few weekend "herfs" (cigar smoking gatherings) over the years. I am not a football fan, but I cannot refuse to watch the Super Bowl if I know Kirk has thrown together a Super Bowl herf. He's friendly, easy-going, and one helluva good pipe maker. His pipes are always among the best values in the pipe world as he makes an excellent product and charges a VERY fair price. In the years I've been watching him learn the craft, he truly has come into his own as a manufacturer of quality pipes.
Scott Bundy is a rock drummer and a tobacco-head living in Michigan. He is currently working at The Pipe Rack, a company dedicated to providing high-quality unsmoked and estate pipes, vintage tobaccos, and other accessories. I'd love to get out to hear him play again one day soon, and he is always a great guy to share a smoke with. Among my favorite memories of Scott are...wait! I can't tell you about those memories. But I still have the panties he managed to finagle off of a fan of his at a show. I've said too much.
Brian Ruthenberg is quickly becoming one of the world's most respected pipe artisans. Though he's only been making pipes for a relatively short amount of time, I'm told by many that his pipes are among the best made and best smoking pipes anywhere. This doesn't surprise me. Brian is the kind of guy that can make, manufacture, or repair ANYTHING, usually with little or no prior knowledge of how to do so. He built me a "coolerdor" (a humidor inside a travel cooler) some years back and I am the proud owner of a retro-fitted china cabinet humidor be built back in his cigar days. He's about as nice a man as you'll ever find.
I met all of these guys originally at a cigar smokers internet bulletin board and have been fortunate enough to meet them in person and share a few great times with them in the years since.
If you are ever in the market for some excellent
briar pipes, tobacco, or accessories,
please be sure to check out their websites
and tell them Andy sent ya.
A Better Juggler and a Great guy
I have never had a problem with "better" jugglers. It is widely known that I have forgotten more tricks than I remember. I am also a considerably different type of juggler than other folks out there, if not a different performer than I was several years ago.
in any event, when I meet a talented performer, with a high-quality act, that is also easy to work with and easy to get along with on the road, I am always the first to put professional jealousy aside and just admire the talent. I also appreciate the friendship.
T. J. Howell has been one of the hardest-working, if not among the best circus-style jugglers & unicycle riders for many years. I've been fortunate enough to work with him on quite a few occasions (including my most recent Southern Illinois trip) and I'd never hesitate to recommend his services to anyone. He's been more than kind enough to refer me for some good gigs as well.
You can often find him at the Circus World Museum in Baraboo, Wisconsin during the summer and he's toured the world with his talents.
Now his kids are even getting into the act. Check out this very cool article about TJ, and his two kids, Hunter & Carson. How cool is that?
A lesser man would look at this as two more guys who will take away work from me. They are probably already better jugglers than I am. LOL!
Congrats, T.J.! I hope to see ya down the road again soon.
My Only Cinco de Mayo Joke
In honor of Cinco de Mayo and Mexican independence, I've decided to mow my own lawn today.
The PERFECT joke for today's racially-friendly climate. I ROCK!
Look At All The Linky Love
It's time once again to do some blog-whoring on behalf of all the folks who have been blog-whoring on my behalf. There seems to be a lot of linky love going around so let's get to it.
Both Golfwidow and Bud Buckley thought it worth mentioning me and my gifts of 7 inch penguins and DVDs. I wanted to send out some thank you gifts to everyone who was kind enough to be my guest bloggers during my trip to Las Vegas last month.
I found these most excellent little stuffed penguins at a local flower shop recently and since they were in the right price range I've decided they'll be my new Andy penguin gift for things like client gifts and for anyone willing to post a fan pic on their blog. They're adorable and you know you want one!
The great and powerful MICHAEL MANNING, television personality, writer, and all around nice guy has recently linked to my main website, and I think my blog as well. He's a very talented guy and since he's light years more successful than myself I have no choice but to bow to his greater powers and direct you to his blog & his main site. Seriously, read some of his work. He's pretty freakin' cool. He obviously has great taste.
E-Pauly continues to bring his insights into the ways of the world as seen through a club-going, woman-loving, Canadian. As it happens he also reprints my Ten Things Tuesday list most every week. Plus there's ALWAYS many a fine photo of many a fine looking lady at his site. If for no other reason you should head over there.
I believe on more than one recent occasion, Gordon has been kind enough to plug this site and since I cannot get into his comments section there I happily thank him here. Please go read his site and tell him I sent ya.
While I have no official linky love to report, I'm confident I can convince the wonderfully psychotic Webmiztris to add me to the blogroll at Tiny Voices In My Head. She's got a lovely looking blog and it seems to be filled with good stuff from all of the voices floating around in that skull. So why not maximize your reading dollar by reading the rantings of many voices from one head? Besides, she's cute and lord knows I'm all about having cute chicks around the old blog.
My name in lights!
Not exactly what I had in mind, but I'll take what I can get.
Pictured here is the sign for the infamous Pasquali's in Negaunee, MI. I wasn't lying. It is a sign for an Italian eatery, featuring a Scottish highland dancer on top. Strange days indeed.
My brother was telling me that the place used to be a topless bar. This wasn't a strip club, mind you. Just a topless bar.
I, of course made a joke about it being, "a strip club...OF THE DAMNED!"
The only report I have to share about the topless bar days is that it was the only place with topless women in it where my brother actually felt like asking the woman to put her clothes back on. Can't imagine what that would be like? Well in his own words, "Picture a sweat sock filled with a bar of soap."
The place also used to be something of a disco club back in the day. The "stage" where I performed was the old light-up dance floor, complete with disco ball and more lights than anyone would ever need. I reckon that a whole lot of cocaine and dead hookers went through the place over the years.
The show itself went very well. I am hopeful that they'll ask to have me back. It does provide an excellent excuse for me to visit the family in the U.P.. It also was just odd enough a place that I'd feel somehow slighted if I only played there once. LOL!
Check out that sign again. They at least advertised the comedy, which is considerably more than most comedy venues I've worked locally. They had a good-sized crowd as well. Another difference in comparison to the shows I've done here. One thing I can't quite figure out though...
Is the comedy a bigger draw than the high school dance? I hope they at least advertise the comedy on the side facing the busier side of the street.
Ten Things Tuesday: Lost Kama Sutra Positions