GAS LEAK -- California Governor Jerry Brown says that Texas Governor Rick Perry's media campaign to lure California businesses to Texas "Are not a burp. In fact, they're barely a fart." Brown is so conservation conscious, he recycled that comment. That's how he described Perry's performances in the GOP presidential debates.
OINK OINK -- L. A. welcomed over 2000 pork lovers to its first ever Bacon Festival featuring inventive menu items like the Bacon Pretzel Bun made with bacon fat and sprinkled with bacon bits, Bacon Marmalade, and the Mac 'n' Cheese Bacon Sandwich. Everything had a bacon theme -- even the Disney-sponsored emergency "Miss Piggy Cardio Tent."
GERIATRIC AIR -- Edith Lauderbach, co-founder of the first airline stewardess union in 1945 has died at 91. And was the first to work for the same airline for 40 years. In her later years, she faced setbacks, too, failing to convince United to serve "Early Bird" meals, and offer Bingo in place of the in-flight movie.
UNRAMPED -- One of New York's most eagerly-awaited annual events, "Fashion Week," came close to being canceled last week thanks to a blizzard and the city's conservationist mayor Michael Bloomberg. Along with sugary drinks, he threatened to outlaw models who weigh more than 16 ounces.
(Contents Copyright (c) 2013 by Robert L. Mills All Rights Reserved)
Just in time for Cupid's Day next Thursday! Gloria, our Singing Dog, performs "My Funny Valentine" backed by the Doberman Pupernackle Choir. The perfect gift for your loved one...
ADAPTED FROM THE LAUGH MAKERS
(From the March Issue of Living-in-the-West Magazine)
If Hope wasn’t satisfied with a particular performance, you’d know about it — fast. Charlotte Rae, star of the seventies sitcom The Facts of Life, was in a parody of Dallas, cast as Miss Ellie opposite Hope’s J.R. Since Hope watched little television (save for football and golf ), he had no idea who the animated Broadway-trained actress was.
Susan was going with British actor Dudley Moore at the time, and he was never far away during rehearsal. During the read-through, Hope had warned Susan not to laugh at her own lines while putting him through the wringer.
But despite his advice, Susan insisted on injecting a series of giggles before, during and after every one of her lines. Bad enough during rehearsal, but later in front of an audience, her giggling if anything, increased. Repeatedly, Hope stopped the taping, called her off to the side and whispered instructions. Then she’d go over to Dudley who’d give her more tips — apparently to keep up the good work.
Finally, Hope surrendered and finished the sketch, hoping that Susan’s delivery could be fixed in post. But no amount of editing could save the sketch which had to be cut from the special – along with a stretching machine that would have been the envy of the C.I.A..
We cast Charlene in 1981 Valentine special opposite Hope as a high school football hero. Like Susan Anton, she consistently telegraphed the laughs, but did so in such a charming and disarming way, Hope realized she brought an additional element of entertainment to the sketch (which, if I recall correctly, it sorely needed).
Moreover, when Charlene flubbed a line, she’d break up and go into hysterics, sometimes literally falling on the floor. During any taping, whenever Hope sensed he was getting interesting outtakes, he’d tell the director to keep the tape rolling. This was one of those times — in spades.
Over the years, he ended up with some priceless flubs and bloopers which were used in NBC’s promos for the show and on Hope’s obligatory Tonight Show appearance. “Save that one for Carson,” he’d say. We got some irreplaceable classics from Miss Tilton.
Watch a video of the Valentine sketch at: http://youtu.be/azelaI2AGZc