It took Ogden Nash to play Knock-Knock in
Qui va la?
Alencon-fants de la patrie."
COME! SEE! NOW!
To our friends in the L.A. area (and you know who you are, we hope) everyone waits til the last minute to catch your friends' work, and then something happens AND YOU MISS IT! Don't! You'll miss a rare chance to see our directing work here in town, of which we're very proud. Here's the dope:
RUNNING WITH ROBIN
Tulis' McCall's wonderful one-woman play "Running With Scissors", which I directed, starts a 6-week run on June 8th every Tuesday and Wednesday only at 8pm at the Court Theatre, 722 N. La Cienega, 1 1/2 blocks north of Melrose. Tickets are $20 by calling 310 41-TULIS or at TipsMcC@Yahoo.com but Tulis offers Planet Proctor readers 20% off the ticket price June 8-9, 15-16. For more info check out http://www.breakdownservices.com/invite/iwindex.htm
Valet parking is available at Le Petit Bistro (open til 11PM) 631 N. La Cienega 310-289-9797; or Cienega @ 744 N. La Cienega, 310-358-8585 or at Manhattan Wonton, 8475 Melrose Place, 323-655-6030. Tell me you're coming, and I'll show up for a get-together after the show!
Also, come see "Robin, Polished by Love," a one act by Marivaux co-directed by me and Melinda and performed by the Antaeus Company at this weekend's NoHo Arts Festival in a charming tented stage on Weddington above Magnolia west of Lankershim on Saturday, June 12 @ 12:30 and Sunday, June 13 @ 5:00.
(Product unknown: "Printed in Japan.")
"The California stretch" is a phrase coined by a Frenchman to describe the position one must assume when holding a drink inside and a cigarette outside a bar in order to conform to our present laws regarding drinking and smoking.
(From me, and published in "Only in L.A.")
PEACE IN OUR TIME?
The person with the most influence over Slobodan Milosevic is his dreamy and complicated wife, Mirjana Markovic ... Born in the woods in July 1942, the offspring of two Partisan fighters who were famous and later infamous in their own right, Ms. Markovic's earliest memories are of being hidden in a storage cabinet used for firewood, unable to utter a word, while anti-Communist Chetniks, fierce Serbian nationalists, searched for the daughter of the famous Partisan fighter.
Like her husband, Ms. Markovic largely shuns the public eye. But she has written extensively, including a bizarre and closely watched diary published throughout the 1990's in a Belgrade weekly, Duga. She says that the moon is a planet and that it protects her, so she wears a moonstone. She spends hours combing her hair -- which she wears as she did in high school, with bangs -- and resents anyone interrupting that activity... She says she cannot live without mirrors, and she works for a month to plan the music for the couple's New Year's Eve celebrations, which she regards as a mystical moment to start anew...
Ms. Markovic is besotted by her son, who flunked out of high school and became a race-car driver, famous for the prices of the vehicles he crashed. Marko still lives in Pozarevac, where he is described by locals as behaving like a "little lord," abusing people and running a discotheque called "Madonna."
She loves her husband, who is believed never to have been with another woman. After she met him, her biographer writes, she was "no longer afraid of the winter, nor darkness, nor mosquitoes, nor the beginning of the school year, nor a possible C in math." ... "They won't surrender," an anonymous source affirms. "They'll defend themselves. Even in chess, the pawns die before the king and queen."
(Excerpts from "The Power Couple" by Steven Erlanger, NY Times)
"If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit.
ROLLING, ROLLING, ROLLING!
LONDON (AP) -- Stephen Brain was "the big cheese" at the recently revived ancient Western English custom of cheeserolling in which competitors chase an 8-pound double Gloucester cheese down a steep 300-yard course and the first to finish behind the cheesewheel gets to eat it. The 30-year-old Brain, who says that "The trick is to try and stay on your feet," won all three of the men's races which were canceled in 1998 because 27 racers had been injured. But this year, only one contestant was taken away in an ambulance; because, as Richard Jefferies, a member of the organizing committee, explains: "I think the decision to move it to noon stops people having too much to drink before they come."
According "The Customs and Ceremonies of Britain," cheeserolling was once just one of many events in a big spring celebration including lost sports such as "grinning for the cake," "jumping in the bag," and "chattering for a bladder of snuff by old women." Olympics Committee, are you listening?
"Even if you're on the right track,
BUT BEING BOILED AT ANY TIME IS SAFER
Traditionally British boiled vegetables are healthier even than raw ones, according to Sue Southon, of the Institute of Food Research in Norwich, UK, who found that cooking and even mashing, releases more "carotenoids" -- the antioxidant chemicals that combat tissue damage and narrowing of the arteries. Yum yum!
"Last year, in a nation of over 50 million people,
So your daughter's a hooker, and it spoiled your day.
My tire was thumping, I thought it was flat.
You had your bladder removed and you're on the mends....
You've announced that you're gay; won't that be a laugh,
Happy Vasectomy! Hope you feel zippy!
Heard your wife left you. How upset you must be...
Your computer is dead, it was once so alive!
You totaled your car and can't remember why,
"If English was good enough for Jesus Christ,
THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS
Here is the copy for an upcoming "Mastercard" TV spot submitted by fellow voice-meister Danny Mann:
"A Lockheed F-16 Fighting Falcon -- $25 Million.
A Lockheed F-117 Nighthawk Stealth Fighter -- $45 Million.
A Boeing B-52 Stratofortress -- $74 Million.
A Brand new B-2 Stealth Bomber -- $2.1 Billion.
A recent map of downtown Belgrade... priceless.
There are some things money can't buy. For everything else, there's MasterCard."
"There's no such thing as an old joke
DON'T BLOW IT!
A musician who's spent his whole life trying to break into the big time is feeling very depressed. He's been turned down by every single record company in the country, and no one seems to recognize his unique genius other than his Mom. So he decides to top himself and dreams up an ingenious plan to get back at all the institutions who've rejected him all his life.
He goes into a recording studio and tells the engineer to record exactly what he says, then copy it onto 1000 CDs and send them out to all the record execs in the country. He goes into the vocal booth, the red light goes on, and he begins:
"This is a message to all you sycophantic, talentless bastards who've ignored me all these years. I dedicated my life to writing beautiful, emotive, soul-touching music, and all you wankers do is bin my tapes and sign pretty-boy bands and the Spice Girls. Well, I've taken all I can of your puerile, shallow industry, and it's YOU who've driven me to it!!! Bye-bye, murderers of Art!!" With that, he pulled out a gun and sprayed his brains all over the studio wall.
The sound engineer glances up and says "Okay, that's fine for level. Wanna go for a take?"
"Don't carry a grudge.
Actor Ed Gilbert, 67, whose voice was familiar to children everywhere as the character "Baloo" in Disney's "Jungle Book" as well as in features like "The Little Mermaid", stopped talking after a 40-year career on May 8, not far from us in Benedict Canyon, after a brave battle with lung cancer.
In addition to his entertainment career, Gilbert was also a celebrated and widely published biologist who discovered, wrote about and illustrated over 100 previously unknown species of insects during years of research trips into the jungles of Central and South America. Donations can be made in his memory to Nature Conservancy, 11340 West Olympic Blvd, Suite 246, LA, CA 90064-1612.
Also, a noisy sendoff to James Bladdes, a 97-year-old musician who made gunshots and thunder for silent movies and was famous for the "Gong!" that preceded J. Arthur Rank's productions. During World War II, he created "the greatest noise I ever made" -- a BBC "V for Victory" signal pounded out on an African drum, broadcast 150 times a day to encourage Resistance Fighters.
And then we sing a fond farewell to Melvin Howard Torme. who scatted out of life yesterday. I loved his music, and often saw him perform live with my parents in the 50s. We called him "The Velvet Frog" in his later years, because he started life looking like a Prince... A prolific and multi-talented artist, his most memorable legacy besides his recorded vocals is "The Christmas Song," co-authored on a sweltering summer day in L.A. to try and cool off and eventually released in over 1,300 versions.
When asked why he kept singing the "old songs", Torme said they were simply better. "When young rock singers began writing their own, they displaced the community of songwriters who worked with grace, wit, charm, intelligence and brilliance."
In fact, Torme got so discouraged about the state of popular music that at one point in the '60s, he decided to chuck it and he went to school to become an airline pilot. Well, he's flying now. And singing, I'm sure.
THE PROGRAMMER'S DRINKING SONG
"99 little bugs in the code, 99 bugs in the code,
(C) 1999 by Phil Proctor