Tuesday, October 31, 2006

More o my peeps on the Promenade

I was pleasantly surprised to see Danny (aka Sylvester the Jester) and his girlfriend Sharon at the Promenade last night. They had been doing some shopping in Santa Monica and were trying to sit out rush hour in the cool fall ocean breeze of the Promenade. I had been entertaining for an hour or so and was ready to take a break. We got a bite to eat and had a good chat. We talked about our recent trip to Vegas, opening up for The Amazing Johnathan at the Sahara. That sure was a blast. I was off so quickly to Cleveland after Vegas that I never really go to tell the full story of how my being there, caused a union complication and the implementation of a bizarre union (and by the way readers. . . this is the same union that Polly is a member of) contactual stipulation that now gave me a "Shadow". The question was why was I bringing on Dan's props and not a union guy. It was later identified that I was an "actor" playing the part of a crew/union guy. As such, it was acknowledged, that the scripted bits that I was a part of (carrying on / or off props), was my responsibility, but when the bit was over the "shadow" would take them the rest of the way off the stage

The whole thing (in my opinion) was the result of a disgruntled union sound guy, who happened to be the union steward. He had a bit of a chip on his shoulder because he doesn't like the fact that Johnathan will start his show when he is ready. That might be 10 minutes late. . . it might be 20 or 30. (While I was there it was consistently 10 min. late, an appropriate amount of time to increase tension and make the audience want to see the act.

Bla Bla Bla, fast forward to the brief meetings I'm having with a silver haired guy from the hotel with a nice smile and a baseball bat and another union guy. I assured them that I couldn't be happier with the new arrangement, and that I liked my legs just the way they were. So this is how it works. Bottom line was Johnathan had no recourse. The 40 year old union contract was with the Sahara Hotel & Casino. They pay Johnathan. They deduct the new expense, of a shadow, for 6 performances and he eats that. One of the many things I learned and absorbed whie on that trip.

If I get around to it, and can find my notes, I'll post about a VERY interesting several day discussion about the "Creative Process". We compared and contrasted the differences in his (Dan's), Johnathan's and Kevin James's technique, attitude and process in creating new ideas / material. Having known Danny for 25 years and having lived with him for two, it goes without saying that I am one of his biggest fans. He never ceases to amaze me, whether he's fixing a dohickeee, drawing, painting, writing poetry or fixing a car, he inspires me on every level. I'm lucky to call him one of my closest friends.


This picture was taken at 2:50AM at the end of the day. Danny making repairs to his digital sound vest.

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