A dear reader asked how I met my partner, David Isaacs and it occurred to me, I’ve never shared that story on this blog. Too busy reviewing HOUSE HUSBANDS OF HOLLYWOOD I guess.
Anyway, here’s how we met. Summer 1973. Jack in the Box rolled out their first Breakfast Jacks. DEEP THROAT was charming theatergoers. SIGMUND AND THE SEA MONSTERS debuted on NBC. It was a great time to be alive.
David had recently moved to Los Angeles from South Florida where he had dreams of being in the industry. Doing what he didn’t know but he felt there were more entertainment opportunities in Hollywood than Ft. Lauderdale.
After the usual litany of odd jobs (security guard, etc.) he finally landed at ABC – in the film shipping department. He would send out film cans of shows to Hawaii and other network outposts. This is a department that no longer exists in any form. But that’s due to technology, not David.
I was a Top 40 disc jockey doing the all-night show at KMEN in San Bernardino. I was on from midnight to six every goddamn night trying to be funny after every record even though my only listeners were ten 7-11 clerks and half of them were tied up in the back after being robbed.
And for good measure, every other day I would get a memo from the program director saying, “JUST SHUT UP AND PLAY THE RECORDS. YOU’RE NOT FUNNY. JUST PLAY THE GODDAMN HITS!”
Neither of us had a bright future.
I was in an Armed Forces Radio Reserve unit back then. My draft number was 4, which meant if eligible I’d be drafted in one nanosecond. So I managed to get into this unit, although it meant a commitment of six full years.
After completing regular Basic Training and Advanced Training my obligation was 16 hours a month and two weeks every summer. It was during one of those summer camps that I first met Pvt. Isaacs.
Through a friend of his he was able to transfer into the unit upon his arrival to California. He had no broadcast training nor any desire to become a broadcaster but this was the army, so he was approved immediately by the unit. It’s amazing they didn’t try to recruit him.
So now I’m in Ft. Carson, Colorado, in the barracks, enjoying my first Breakfast Jack and hoping to see DEEP THROAT for a third time when I notice a guy reading the biography of George S. Kaufman (famous comedy playwright from the 20s-50s). Kaufman was an idol of mine (read MAN WHO CAME TO DINNER and YOU CAN’T TAKE IT WITH YOU) and I was surprised to see someone reading it on an army base. Actually, I was surprised to see anybody on an army base reading any book.
So I introduced myself, we seemed to hit it off, and we discovered we both had this love for comedy.
Tomorrow: How we decided to team up and become a writing team. There may be a HOUSE HUSBANDS OF HOLLYWOOD 2. If so, I’ll drop whatever I’m writing and report on that.