Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Random musings and birthday wishes

First off, an announcement. I’m going to hold another SitcomRoom seminar later this fall. Dates and location to be announced very soon. To get an idea of what to expect, you can read about the very first SitcomRoom. If you want to receive all the details and registration info as soon as they’re available, you can sign up for my SitcomRoom alert list. Like last time, enrollment will be limited to twenty. And no, I don't give Pocket Fishermen to the first ten who sign-up.

Overheard: someone on a cellphone trying to sell a direct-to-DVD film called ASSASIN BALLARINAS.

There’s a new company called iScript that will record your spec screenplay. The idea here is that producers and agents who never read might actually listen to a script if they had the chance. In theory it’s a good idea and it’s certainly novel. But I have two concerns. Seems a small CD would be even easier for an agent/producer/reader to lose. So they will. Guaranteed! And I worry that the actors might not do the material justice. I attended a screenplay reading last year where the main character was the world’s most brilliant nuclear physicist. Billy Ray Cyrus played him. Viennese genius, Jed Clampet discussing quantum theory. So writers beware.

Oh boy! Katie Couric will be doing her newscast from Iraq and Syria the next ten days. Expect her to really get to the bottom of things. But here’s my favorite part of this non-story. When CBS Evening News executive producer, Rick Kaplan was questioned as to whether this is just a ploy to increase Katie’s horrendous ratings he said, “Only fools will perceive that.” I guess everyone on the planet is a fool then. I know I am. How about you?

If you wish you were in Hawaii (like I do every day, especially when I read the trades), put on an aloha shirt, make yourself a pina colada and tune into to “Hele me hoohiwahiwa George's ho'omaha loa”. Sounds beautiful, doesn’t it? It’s the only Hawaiian phrase I know. It means, “Come celebrate George’s retirement.”

And finally…

Happy birthday, Annie! My daughter turns 21 on Thursday. No longer will she need that Ms. McLovin fake ID. Annie, you’ve grown into a fabulous, caring, striking young woman. If only I could still convince you that Lulu is a great singer.

I love you, Annie and as everyone knows, there’s nothing like a daddy’s love.


The Bumble Bee Pendant said...

tell me it's in NY

VP81955 said...

Happy birthday, Annie! My daughter turns 21 on Thursday. No longer will she need that Ms. McLovin fake ID. Annie, you’ve grown into a fabulous, caring, striking young woman. If only I could still convince you that Lulu is a great singer.

I love you, Annie and as everyone knows, there’s nothing like a daddy’s love.

Congrats to Annie on her 21st...and if you want to prove to her that Lulu is a great singer, check out the 4-CD Rhino compilation "Girl Groups Sound: Lost And Found" (known as the "hat box" set because that's what it looks like). The title is a bit deceiving in that many of the 120 tracks are by solo artists -- and one of them is by Lulu, a rocker from 1964 called "I'll Come Running." I presume it was a hit in the UK, and it shows her as a soul belter, 180 degrees removed from "To Sir, With Love" (more along the lines of "Oh Me, Oh My," her only other U.S. hit of note, but far tougher). It was a revelation, and I definitely intend to seek out a Lulu compilation; it sounds like she's right up there with Dusty Springfield where British blue-eyed soul is concerned.

The "hat box" set has many, many other goodies, such as the Chiffons' brilliant "Nobody Knows What's Goin' On (In My Mind But Me)," the Flirtations' splendid "Nothing But A Heartache," Brenda Lee's "Is It True" (recorded in the UK with some hot Jimmy Page guitar licks) and the Jackie DeShannon-penned "Baby, That's Me" by the Cake, the best ersatz Spector sound ever. And those are only on disc 1!

Christina said...

I meant to tell Annie when I saw her at the seminar that I still think about her piece on Whole Foods and giggle. (I have a love/hate relationship with the place myself.) She definitely has your sense of humor.

Happy Birthday, Annie!

ravaj said...

ah, lulu. the only fan club i ever joined except for the rodney marsh one (london football hero of my childhood). she saved my life once y'know. my parents had sent me to a health farm when i was 12, and i was the youngest there by at least 20 years. i was miserable and starving. lulu stopped by for a rest cure, and saw this poor child. swept me away in her limo down to the town for tea. hot chocolate, sandwiches, cakes i was in heaven. she probably doesn't remember but i will never forget her.

o, and she's not a bad singer either :-)

Richard Cooper said...

Those schoolgirl days of telling tales and biting nails are gone/
But in my mind I know they will still live on and on/
But how do you thank someone who has taken you from crayons to perfume?/
It isn't easy, but I'll try/
If you wanted the sky I would write across the sky in letters/
That would soar a thousand feet high 'To Sir, With Love'

Who wouldn't love Lulu after that song? Ah, well, maybe Pink is the one these whippersnappers listen to these days!

Happy Day, Annie, you whippersnapper, you!

blogward said...

Lulu? No, no, no, she's a complete fake. A pub singer. I'm with Annie on this one.

Anonymous said...

Next, on My13, after the Playgirl naked chimpanzee photo shoot, an episode of M*A*S*H entitled "The Most Unforgettable Characters."

It's on in 4 minutes and even though I own that huge box set with all the episodes, I still watch.

Anonymous said...

One of my favorite exchanges of that episode:

"What a provocative anecdote!" - Radar
"You watch your mouth." - Klinger

Unknown said...

My stepmother is from denmark - every birthday (my last was 10 days ago :-) ) She and my father call me and sing a danish birthday song (this year even independently since my father now knows it by heart).

This totally cracks me up every time because I don't understand a word and it is so absolutely different from the regular songs people sing :-)

I hope your father made you feel just the same by congratulating you on his blog, Annie. Happy birthday! :-)

Alto2 said...

Aha! You are not just another snarky cynic. You are actually a sentimental fool (oops! "father"). Happy 21st to your daughter.

"Assassin Ballerinas"? I have an image of the Swan Lake corps de ballet toting Tommy guns. Too funny.

Anonymous said...

Since you mentioned Lulu, I'll use that as an excuse to mention Hulu.

What is Hulu? It is the name of the NBC Universal-News Corp. Web video joint venture to rival YouTube.

According to Broadcasting:

In a message on, CEO Jason Kilar says the name doesn't have any significant meaning; it is simply "short, easy to spell, easy to pronounce, and rhymes with itself."

Can there be any better recommendation for a name than that it rhymes with itself?

Anonymous said...

Hap Birth Annie! 21! Woo hoo!

When I was twenty one I played piano and sang at a place called Simply Blues. In the Sunset tower. Doesn't anybody remember Simply Blues? Oh.

God that was a long time ago.

Mark B.

maven said...

Happy 21st, Annie! They sure do grow up fast, Ken! Where do the years go?

Anonymous said...

I turned 21 in prison doing life without parole.

Cap'n Bob said...

No pocket fisherman? Include me out.

Lulu used to be great, but that appearance on American Idol showed she's lost her wonderful pipes. Too bad.

Happy Birthday to Annie. Nice words from you, Ken.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
I turned 21 in prison doing life without parole.

Well, I'm sure Mama tried...

Anonymous said...

Well, I'm sure Mama tried...

"Mama said there'd be days like this, there'd be days like this, Mama said."

Just seemed right.

Dr. Leo Marvin said...

The cheap shot at Katie Couric is beneath you. She has great legs.

Anonymous said...

Assassin Ballerinas? Pffft, been done before, long ago. Back in the thirties here in England Caryl Brahms and SJ Simon wrote the first in their series of comedy murder mysteries set in a travelling ballet company always on the verge of bankruptcy. All loosely mocking Diaghilev, of course. The books still make a fun read today if you can find them.

Ellen said...

I happened to be visiting Mitzi when the news came about the birth. That was 21 years ago? Yikes!

Anonymous said...

RE: Katy Couric’s 10-day deployment in Iraq.

Do you realize that today (Sept. 4) is exactly one year to the day that you blogged about Katie letting it slip that, as a single mom with small children, she would not be going to dangerous world hotspots?

So I guess things really MUST BE turning around in Tikrit? Either that or things must NOT be turning around at CBS.

I have no problem with Katie either, but do you remember when, a year ago she asked all the viewers to send in sign-off suggestion she could select from. And then they tossed ‘em all and let her pretend to say whatever the last thing is that comes into her head.

It was a slow week, I sent in a total of 171 signoffs, all snarky, a hundred of which were ostensibly suggested by celebrities of one sort or another. Among those rejected: Dan Rather “Courige,” Barbara Walters, “Couwage,” Jillian Barberie, “Cleavage,” Andy Rooney, “Dotage,” Ted Kazynski, “Postage, Clint Eastwood, “Do ya feel perky, punk?” Sumner Redstone, “Viacom dios,” “Daniel Shorr, “Today-to-Murrow, WTF?” Morley Safer, “You complete me Morley Safer,” Bob Schieffer, “Friggin’ set still smells like Cronkite,” CBS TV Entertainment president Nancy Tellem, “And now, they’ve asked me to close with this interpretive dance,” former Today Show producer and NBC honcho Jeff Zucker, “Pull my finger,” CBS president Les Moonves, “So long zucker.”

What would you have suggested?