Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Gramping It Up

Wednesday November 18th, 2009 - Long Grove, IL/Cary, IL/Kenosha, WI

Lots of running around again today, I sure hope some of this pays off pretty soon. All it feels as if I do is get up and run around and get back home and sleep a little only to get up and do it all again. I’ve been hitting the road pretty hard in the last little bit and things are falling behind everywhere else. I wanted to stay home today and catch up but I couldn’t.

There was a quarterly meeting for the Lake County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau in Long Grove, IL and since I paid my membership dues I don’t think it’s smart to miss any meetings. Those people are extremely nice though, so I don’t mind. It’s good business for me to network with people in the area, and I’m sure at some point I’ll get hired for a gig.

The bad weather made traffic a nightmare and there were a bunch of people who didn’t make it by 8:30. I pulled in right at 9am thinking I was late, but in fact I had nailed it and was actually early. They postponed it for a few minutes and I can see why. It was a mess.

After the meeting I fought more traffic to make it to Jerry Agar’s house for a rehearsal of “You’re On The Air” with Jerry and the Kidders. We put in a full day’s hard work of editing and rehearsing lines without a script, and by 5pm we were all ready for a snooze.

The play is really coming along though. Everyone is working together and we’re adding funny lines and punching up the others we already have. We’re all excited to give it a shot in January at the Beverly Arts Center. Tickets are on sale and we’ve already sold some so that made all of us feel good. We’re not getting cocky, but we think we can really nail it.

After practice I met up with my friend Gary Pansch in Kenosha because it’s his birthday today. I bought him a meal at a Mongolian Barbecue place that just opened because that’s where he wanted to go. Gary is a regular on the Mothership Connection radio show and a very funny comedian as well, and I felt I owed him at least a meal for all he pitches in.

I won’t forget Gary’s birthday because it was also my grandfather’s. He was born in ‘12 and died in ‘81 but I still think about him often if not daily. He was absolutely the biggest influence of my childhood, and I can honestly say if it weren’t for him I’d be going down a much worse path than I ended up choosing. Gramps took time with me and it paid off.

I thought about him all day and was grateful for how wise he was. He had a style all his own when it came to teaching and I was his masterpiece of mentorship. He was about 52 when I went to live with him and my grandmother. I was 5 months old. Life was a mess.

Gramps often told me he raised me because he felt he owed it to me. He saw how all of us were being raised by my parents and that wasn’t good for anyone. Gramps made it his mission to plant good seeds in my head and he said it would be up to me to nurture them.

I’m doing my best, and I know I’ve made him proud. He wanted to be in show business but never went after it. I’m living my dream and part of his too. Happy birthday, Gramps.

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