Tag Archives: Orlando

Andyman

20 Jul

This was on my friend’s Facebook wall the other day:

Andy Davis, better known as Andyman, died while drowning on vacation. It was sad.

Duh.

I both loved and hated* this man. The reason why I hate Andyman is because he is responsible for my utter demise in having a normal 9 to 5 job. But thats OK, because I still love him.

This is what I wrote in between all the sad comments on that post above:

I wrote something funny…well at least it was funny to me. I wrote something funny because Andyman was one of the funniest people I ever known.

It was Andyman who introduced me to the world of improv comedy and changed my life forever.

Mostly because later in life I learned I sucked at improv comedy.

Andyman and I went to broadcasting school together. It was one of those schools that quickly appears in a random strip mall, right between a Chinese restaurant and a dry cleaners, takes everyone’s money, and disappears two years later…only to pop up in some other city, in some other state.

You had to audition for the school, but guess what? Everyone with $2ooo seemed to pass the audition. I think of the 12 of us in my class, only 3 of us had any real talent.

Myself, of course.

Andyman, of course.

And Sherri, of course. (Because I was hooking up with her.)

This greatest lesson I learned at that school was that I didn’t want to become a DJ.

Later in life, that would actually change when I got to Florida and discovered this radio station, 104.1. 104 is a talk station, but not like a regular talk station, the shows are entertaining. Most talk stations are all about sports, politics, or how to weed your garden. This station is more like Season 4 of Seinfeld meets a Game Show meets the last great comedic movie you saw. I’m not saying I could actually do what those talk show hosts do, but if they had a station like that in Ohio, I would have at least given it a shot.

So I’m sitting in school, thinking this is a mistake…I knew it was a mistake because I had gotten a job at the roller rink as their DJ. It was a terrible gig. The DJ who trained me also put together their 20 minute birthday route.  He showed me how to run it once, and expected me to know it by heart. It was a combination of reading a script, running a projector, and playing some really cheesy birthday games…on skates of course. My mentor Roller Rink DJ was pretty much a douche bag. I think, he thought, I wanted his job.

I didn’t.

I just wanted some practiced that payed. If you interned at a radio station, you were working for free.

I grew tired of the Roller Rink job quick. On my last day I put on Kool Moe Dee’s Wild Wild West on a loop and left the DJ booth forever.

For all I know, 12 teenagers could still be skating in a circle to it.

So……I’m sitting in school, thinking this is a mistake, when Andyman introduces me to improv comedy. I’m sure you know what that is, but just in case, it’s a form of comedy where you take suggestions from the audience and turn it into a scene.

I loved it.

I loved it so much, that I decided not to take an internship with a radio station and form my own improv group. It was called: Left of Center.

What set us apart from other improv groups is that we also preformed pre-written comedy skits…which actually we were pretty good at.

It was a good run while it lasted. We got on the local comedy bar circuit, opened for Leon Redbone, and was written up in two or three newspapers.

The group died when we brought it to Florida to try to ink out a television deal. The show’s vision fell along the lines of an American version of Monty Python.

Don’t flip through your TV channels trying to find us, we never got a deal.

I wouldn’t trade those experiences for anything to be honest. Those were great times. I could write many pieces on those days preforming in the bars, but I’ll bore you another day.

Andyman went on to work for the only really good radio station in Columbus, Ohio; 101.1. (which I guess now is 102.1 or 102.B or 101 1/2…I’m not quite sure)

This station played Alternative rock commercially when normally you could only hear that type of music on a college radio station and would have to suffer through a drunk, stoned, college station DJ.

I would have tried to work for 101.1 as well if Andyman didn’t inspire me to try something different.

What’s iconic is my brother also ended up working for that station as well as his best friend.

I know Andyman is squatting on a cloud somewhere up in heaven, playing some groovy tunes, and making the cherubs laugh their diapers off.

I miss you bro. Peace and love.

*I actually never hated Andyman. I followed a dream. It didn’t work out. At least I won’t have a “What if…” gnawing at the back of my brain.

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Please Help Send One Direction To Orlando *Updated*

20 Mar

Please Help Send One Direction To Orlando.

What is One Direction you may ask?

Well, One Direction is a boy band from the U.K. or Ireland or New England or some place like that. They were formed on the British version of X Factor, which I guess, is the original version of that TV show.

Anyway my Tween daughter (and now the Toddler…*sigh) is obsessed with this band and has been since their conception.

These are the "blokes" as they call people in the UK. If I remember their names right, it's Harry, Louis, Niall, Larry, and Ringo. That is probably not right. However the Tween can tell you their first, middle, and last names...birthdays, birthmarks, and anything else you might need or like to know.

We live in Orlando, Florida. For my daughter’s one and only Christmas present (after much debate) we bought her concert tickets to see One Direction open for Big Time Rush in Dunham, North Carolina…the closest venue they were coming to, and by the way…12 hours away from us by car.

At today’s gas prices, that’s like $5000 in gas.

(For those who are lost: Big Time Rush is a boy band as well, and they have an almost watchable TV show on Nickelodeon. (For those even more confused now, Nickelodeon is a kid/tween television station and not a boy band.))

The concert wasn’t until March, so we had some time to plan. Along comes March, and as luck would have it, she has a major school project that very same day…which means no concert.

I don’t know why they are not touring any farther south than Dunham. We get major acts in Orlando all the time. We even have a state of the art arena to host such said acts. My only guess is that they might be afraid that all we have is sweet tea to drink. Not true, we have Coke Zero too.

These guys are pissing me off a little. I did spend an incredible amount of money on a hoodie and poster from their web site for the Tween’s birthday. After the conversion to Euro, and shipping and handling, I was able to afford it by:

A) Selling the car
B) Selling 1 child into slavery
C) Working night shifts as a donut hole punch operator.

So I am calling on the power of the internet to get these guys to Orlando to mend my Tween’s heart. There album has been released here in the states…finally. (My brother sent an advanced copy from Ireland a couple of months ago, so I have already had the pleasure of listening to it 150 times over.) The album is called: Up All Night.

I figure if everyone just buys one copy, it will force them to tour. I know you NSYNC/Backstreet Boy Moms will understand my plight.
www.onedirectionmusic.com/


Help!

*Update*

One Direction is coming to Orlando, Tampa, and Fort Lauderdale in June 2012.

Zombies On The Cul-De-Sac

16 Nov

They just appeared one morning as zombies often do, but this time it was a little strange…not that a world filled with zombies isn’t strange, but for zombie behavior…this was strange.

They appeared at the end of a cul-de-sac, at the very end of the neighborhood. On this particular cul-de-sac sat three houses and a retension pond. Behind the pond sat about 3 acres of trees, and behind the trees sat the former Gatorland, now…you guessed it….Zzombie-land. They had to add an extra Z and a hyphen when the producers of the movie with the same name threaten to sue them.

There was five zombies that appeared and thethey were just standing there, not moving, not walking, not running, not groaning…just standing.

Waiting.

They probably escaped from Zzombie-land, although Zzombie-land is suppose to only have fake and/or “dead” zombies since the incident four years back. People suspect that they kept “living” zombies somewhere on property though. Oh well, the Patrols will investigate all that and eventually we would find out, but the greater mystery right now is why aren’t the zombies doing anything?

Neighbors started gathering in quite alarming numbers about thirty feet back from the five unwanted visitors. Some of the idiots even let there children come and have a look.

Stupid.

Who knows what is going on, these zombies could attack at any moment. All the zombies looked pretty intact too.

I was standing at the head of the crowd when one of the biggest idiots, Arlene and her two twin 5 year olds shambled up to me.

“What do you think is going on with those zombies Jim?” she literally spit at me.

“Don’t know Arlene. Do you think it’s safe to have  children out here?” I asked and shot her a dirty look. She was oblivious to the look though.

“They will be fine. Jerry….Barry…stay by moma. When will the patrols get here?”

I looked at the sky. It was a nice cloudless day. “I think they are about 20 minutes away. George called them. He was the first to see them.”

“Really?”

Arlene took off to find George.

Good, Arlene was a doofus.

I looked at the sky again and breathed in the clean fresh Florida air. Nice. I closed my eyes against the sun. Ever since the zombie attacks started it’s hard to enjoy the outdoors.

And of course that is when the screaming started.

I opened my eyes and as a snapped my head down expecting to see five charging zombies, I instead see Jerry and Barry standing right in front of the zombies. They were pointing and laughing. The neighborhood throng was in a collective stand still. Arlene was on her knees screaming, actually more like wailing.

The zombies still hadn’t moved though. They were turning their heads to listen to Arlene’s crying though.

“Shut up, Arlene!” I hissed. “The zombies are attracted to the caterwauling your making!”

The zombies were the only ones though.

“I’ll get them!” screamed the Jensen kid. He was about 16 or 17 and was holding a shovel he had brought with him in both hands.

He started walking towards the zombies. When he got with 10 feet of them,  they started to move even more. Then they started to groan.

“Stop!” I yelled. “Come back.”

“What? No!” the teenager yelled back.

I don’t know why, but some reflection of the sun and hit something at the zombie’s feet and I had noticed it. At that moment a crazy thought had popped into my head.

“Trust me,” I yelled. “Come back.”

The zombies were really starting to get animated.

“Are you crazy?” Arlene cried. “My babies are going to get eaten.”

“No, they won’t. Trust me,” I hissed.

The Jensen kid slowly came back to the group and the zombies stopped moving. Jerry and Barry had sat down in fear when the zombies reanimated and  were still sitting. They didn’t make a sound though. That was good.

“What is going on?” some stranger asked me.

“I don’t know for sure….” I responded. “But see the sun reflecting on the ground in front of the zombies?”

“Uh huh.” he said.

“What is that?” I asked.

The stranger squinted. “I don’t know.”

“I think those are glasses.”

The stranger laughed. “Are you saying the zombies are blind without their glasses?”

I paused for a second. It did sound ridiculous.

“Yes.”

Arlene screamed, “Somebody get my babies!”

“Shut up Arlene!” someone else shouted-whispered.

“Huh!” the stranger said, thinking this over.

“I think we can flank the zombies and snatch the kids and run out of there really fast before the zombies even see us,” I suggested.

“Ok. You, me and the Jenson kid will go,” he said and walked off to get the Jenson kid before I could say anything.

The next thing you know, the three us were making a wide arc that lead us behind the zombies. I learned the stranger’s name was Brad in the short walk.

We were now behind the zombies.

“Ok,” I said. “On the count of three. One….two…three…”

The three of us ran in front of the zombies. Brad and I grabbed the twins and the Jenson kid smashed all the zombies glasses with his shoe.

The zombies got pissed, sensed us there, and blindly swiped with the arms. They caught nothing but air though.

It was a true brush of death.

Arlene cried and thank us and kissed us and kissed her twins and yelled at them all at the same time.

Just then the useless patrols showed up. In the blink of an eye they snipered the five zombies and left. They didn’t even ask or probably notice the strange, non-aggressive behavior of the zombies. They just pulled the trigger and left.

I can’t guarantee the zombies were near-sighted or far-sighted or whatever it was that didn’t make them attack, but I was just thankful the neighborhood got one more death free day.

Sticks The Zombie

19 Sep

Article taken from The Orlando Gazette Online Edition Sept. 19, 2010

Police Officers are baffled as late last night someone has stolen the Sticks The Zombie display from the Zombie Natural Museum Traveling Show And Monster Truck Rally.

“Currently, we have no clues or evidence,” Det. James A Baker was quoted as saying. “Nor do we know why any perpetrator would want a preserved Zombie to begin with, I mean what are you going to do with it? Stick it in the yard? Put it in your living room? Have it babysit your dog? I don’t get it.”

Sticks the Zombie is one of the more famous attractions in the Traveling Museum And Monster Truck Rally, drawing some 10,000 visitors a day.

Donald Ricks, the Museum’s owner is currently unavailable for comment and is rumored to be contemplating suicide. Ricks has come under fire for “losing” his displays, one in every town for the last seven towns, and is accused of insurance fraud on said displays.

Sticks the Zombie was the Museum’s center piece, a unique and quite visual piece. Sticks, as the name implies, had several long sticks lodged in it’s stomach and back.

Sticks was acquired from a small town in Ohio, which is currently under quarantine. The zombie was recovered from the drinking supply station where it was poked into it by the town’s children with long sticks. The children never informed anyone that they killed a zombie and it had fallen into the drinking water, thus over time giving everyone in the town Zombinilla.

Zombinilla, an un-curable disease in humans, can only be attained by drinking zombie fluids. Zombinilla symptoms included coughing, sneezing, bloody diarrhea, bloody eye sockets, bloody ear drums, bloody nose bleeds, and dry mouth. Any one catching Zombinilla will eventually bleed to death and never be able to satisfy their thirst. (Although fruit punch flavored Gatorade has been rumored to slow down the symptoms.)

If you have information that may help Police Investigators, you may call anonymously at either CrimeLine or ZombieLine, rewards up to 1000 dollars, or 3 night getaways to the Holiday Inn CoCo Beach are available for any tips leading to an arrest.