Friday, September 30, 2016

It Got Ugly.

Hell is probably just hundreds of tourists trying to take pictures while you try to walk down Hollywood Blvd.

 I was luckily perched above these knuckleheads on Wednesday, working from the building across from Grauman’s Chinese Theatre during the premiere of “Westworld”. It’s a new HBO show based on the 70s film about a futuristic theme park that creates expensive, old-western fantasies for customers. (Like fighting to the death.)

Every HBO show must be given a shot, and “Westworld” looks to be one of the most violent of them all. I read that it serves up no end of distressing moments in which characters are terrorized, assaulted or murdered. You had me at assaulted.

Fittingly, it started raining for the first time since May, just as the cast (some stellar names, including Anthony Hopkins and Ed Harris) showed up. The rain only lasted ten minutes, but it was one of those really trippy showers, in which it rained on only one side of the street. Well-played, God.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Weekend In Kansas City, Part III: Glorious Food.

Seven guys who love to eat visit the barbecue capital of the Midwest? I hope you’ve got your passport, because you’re about to leave the matrix.

First meal: Joe’s Barbecue. Above is the heart-stopping Hogomaniac. Most guys keep a condom in their wallet in case they get lucky. I keep a wet-nap.

14 hours later, and we started to get the shakes, so we stopped by LC’s on our way to the game.

LC’s ribs and burnt ends were outstanding. Though for Jews, the white bread felt like a hate crime.

Post-game dinner at Stroud’s. I don't really care which came first – the chicken or the egg. I’m just glad somebody decided both could be broken and fried.

The knockout punch: cinnamon rolls at Stroud’s. Sweet, yeasty goodness. (“Yeasty” is the best word. Use it three times and it’s yours.)

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Weekend In Kansas City, Part II: The City.

The bathrooms in the Kansas City Airport double as tornado shelters, so you can literally experience a shit-storm.

Within walking distance of our hotel was a cool part of town called Westport. Steeped in Civil War history (they call it the “Gettysberg of the West”), all of the original brick buildings have become great hangouts. Harry’s Bar and Tables, above, has a treehouse-like outdoor pub during warm-weather months. All of this was unexpected to us NY/LA guys, who presumed this town would be as boring as marriage.

Don’t get me wrong – it’s not a fully-hip city, as evidenced by the blue water in this fountain, a tribute to the Royals’ World Series championship. A trashy new-money move.

Someone asked me after my trip if I spent any time at Camarohead. Thinking it was a bar in KC, I said no. Then I looked it up, and it turns out “Camarohead” is a common nickname for Arrowhead Stadium, due to its abundance of uneducated, mullet-sporting fans. Most of these fans were harmless, but I noticed after the game that someone had spit all over the side of our SUV because we were Jets fans. Really courageous move not doing it in front of us, ace.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Weekend In Kansas City, Part I: The Flight.

I used to think “baller” was just short for “ballerina”, until I met my friend Marc, who has flown so many miles on American (4 million) that he has his name painted on a plane. Flying with him meant we all got to check in through a batcave-type concierge, with a total fuss made over us. We cut every TSA line and didn’t have to lift our own bags onto the x-ray conveyor-belt. Just 3,982,000 miles more and this is mine.

Only smaller aircraft fly to KC from LA, and you need to take a bus shuttle to get to a separate terminal to board. Unless you’re flying with 4-Million-Mile Marc, and you get whisked Secret-Service style on the actual runway. My life is entirely downhill from this moment.

The party’s over for the all you scammers bringing your “therapy” dogs on planes, but in the meantime, this guy was so cute! He had his own seat! When his owner booked his flight, what middle initial did he use for the dog? And did he choose “Mr.” as his title? I would have gone with “Dr.” Dr. Dog.

This 11-week-old was being flown to her new home in Nebraska. Click to see how she handled her first plane flight.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Actually, Let’s Never Speak Of It Again.

It did not go well for my Jets yesterday, here in Kansas City. Apparently their game plan was “blender without the lid on”.

But besides this fiasco, the weekend was phenomenal, with lots of fun with very good guys and super yummy food. Kansas City is a surprisingly cool city, filled with good-looking people hanging out in very fun hotspots.

Much more about it tomorrow. I’m flying back to LA today – on a jet that hopefully fares a smidge better.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Here We Come.

It’s strange that I drive an SUV, because I can’t even think of six people I’d want to be stuck in a vehicle with.

And yet I will be traveling with six guys to see the Jets play in Kansas City this weekend. In trying to recapture the success of our trip to Wisconsin two years ago, I re-nominated myself food director, and armed with a fistful of beta-blockers, I will lead my friends to the fattiest fare KC has to offer.

Nothing can rain on our parade, except the three straight days of rain in the forecast, including a thunderstorm on game day. At least ponchos are slimming.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Putting SPF Under My “Special Skills”.

Still hanging in a window in Culver city, my old headshot has staying power. Debra Sullivan’s… not so much.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Disaster Averted.

I still think my biggest regret is asking a girl out, and replying “me too” after she told me she had a boyfriend.

But I came close to topping that over the weekend, when I almost walked into a pool fully-clothed during brunch at The Roof on Wilshire. Let’s diagram it:
As I came off the elevator on the bottom right, I witnessed a woman in her full onesie pajamas, standing up and eating breakfast. I surreptitiously took a pic of her, and as I checked my phone to see if I got it, I forgot the pool was between me and my table. (Top photo, on the left.) Luckily, the super-wet concrete acted as a warning track, or else it would’ve been one embarrassing obituary.

I’ll spare the woman by not posting the pic. Still – nice try, God.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Party At Mulligan’s.

Some interesting facts I learned at the children’s play area at Mulligan Fun Center: the Lazer Tag arena is 2200 square feet and I hate children.

Okay, not all children. As an uncle with an SUV, I was required to drive my nephew’s friends to his birthday party yesterday. (Another fact: nine-year-old boys talk incessantly about their junk.)

This kid’s kickass birthday cake will save him from years of therapy.

This kid, all bets are off.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Your Misdemeanor Is My Gain.

Much appreciation to the guy who stole this Kevin Smith book from the King County library and then sold it to me on eBay.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Can’t Wait.

I’m not saying dogs are better than kids in every way, but good luck finding a kid willing to lick up his own vomit.

Photos from the set of John Wick: Chapter Two reveal the film will feature the best dog of all: a Pit Bull. It looks like John’s puppy is all grown up (and is the spitting image of Ricky), with an expanded role. Trust me – Pits have kickass acting skills.

While the original John Wick did okay in theaters, when it hit HBO last year it exploded into a massive hit, especially among guys. It has all the elements we dudes are looking for: revenge, an outstanding screenplay, and lots more revenge. Keanu is phenomenal in it.

And now the sequel has a Pit co-star and premieres in a few months. Yes, please.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

In Which I Just Miss Out On A Great Role.

When people say they did something “like a boss”, I just picture them doing it fatter and with less hair.

I knew I took charge and nailed an audition for a great role on the new TV show “Lethal Weapon” while I was in the casting room last week. You always know. But still, when my phone rang later that day, and I saw my agent was calling, I got to experience the best rush of all. It’s better than sex – because acting is better than babies.

I was pinned for the part, which meant I was one of the top two choices by the producers. It was a very good role, opposite both of the show’s leads, and while I was excited, I was grounded. It wasn’t mine yet.

I found out yesterday they went with the other guy, but the producers told the casting director that they loved me and would bring me back soon. That’s all I can ask. 2400 actors are submitted for a role like this. 12 are brought in to audition. It’s all crazy odds, and all you can do is your job. Light fuse, run away.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Worst Odds In Town.

Most people think of Russian roulette as a negative game, but on the bright side, you can’t lose twice.

Want to really risk your life? Try Bean Boozled. It was given to my nephew for his birthday, and I accepted his challenge to play.

 It’s simple. The jelly beans all seem yummy, but each has a 50/50 chance of being vile. Easily the worst: barf (disguised as peach), moldy cheese (caramel corn) and the utter worst, canned dog food. (Chocolate pudding.) It was the second grossest taste I've ever had in my mouth. No offense to my college girlfriend.

Shout out to my mom, who joined in and was ambushed by baby wipes (coconut). Grandmother of the Year.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Big Family.

We’re a much fatter family than the stick figures on my mom’s rear window would indicate.

Probably because she knows how to feed us very well. She was out here over the weekend, and we’re all are a lot plumper today. It started with a trip to See’s Candy on Friday, and ended last night with buttermilk fried chicken at Nick’s.
In between was good Chinese and Italian meals out, plus she made French toast, chocolate chip cookies and a lemon cake.

It was nice having her here. And now that she’s gone, I’d say it’s time to lose weight, but, well, I really hate losing.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Picking Right Back Up.

A friend will bail you out of jail. A best friend will delete your browser history after you die.

My friend Ted and I have been super close since we were six years old. He was in town last night, so we got together for dinner. Our lives took much different trajectories – Ted is married with four kids – but it doesn’t matter when you have chemistry. There was never a lull in the conversation, and I was sad to drop him off at the airport.

You don't have to have anything in common with people you've known your whole life, because you've got your whole life in common.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

31 Seconds of August.

It’s that time of year again when I should really check in on my friends with pools or boats to see how they’ve been since last summer.

We get a couple more weeks of goodness. And August was very good. Here it is, captured every day for a second:


Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Fairly Awesome.

One of the highlights of my Labor Day weekend was the Orange International Street Fair, featuring lots of yumminess from all over the world. German, Danish, Irish. I’m not quite sure what Irish food is – I just presumed they’d pour you a nice bowl of Lucky Charms.

While nothing could be less “international” than lily-white Orange County, the fair was damn impressive. 16 different regions were represented, and in each section there was both authentic food and a stage featuring a band playing traditional music:

Sorry if you missed it. It’ll be back next year. Until then, you can get in plenty of reps at an International House of Pancakes. Buena suerte.

Friday, September 2, 2016

Flashback Friday.

Exactly one year since Brazil, and the Zika virus is still dormant in me, ladies.

Thursday, September 1, 2016