For Those Who Want It

Last night show was fun, an off the cuff interview with Ben and Alexander and then a song, with my friend Tod Macofsky harmonizing…

It was a night of “Doris Day songs,” and since Tod and I had recently done one particular song, for Betty Bonaduce’s show, we were asked to do it again. This time with talented Gregory Nabours on the piano.

Here are some images… For those that wanna see ‘em. And a video link to just the song, for my parents and the hardcore (“I wish I could have been there”).

In the interview we discussed my novel, Sympathy For The Devil, the duct tape I had on my fingers, my height,  a cross country plane ride where I sat next to Johnny Mathis, and I guess other things too.

Link to the song:

- Quiche Out

I Cramped Up Meeting Ron Howard & Rob Reiner

from wikipediaLast night I had a dream, I was sitting in a theater, waiting for a dress rehearsal to start, when… I met the director, sitting one row ahead of me, and three seats to my left… Ron Howard.

He treated me as if we were long time buddies, that he knew my manager, and thanked me for accepting such a small role in such a small show. But before he finished speaking… Rob Reiner sat in my aisle, directly behind him.

As Ron introduced me to Rob, I shook his hand, wanting to tell him how much I’ve enjoyed his work over the years, when… My hand cramped up, balling up like a horse’s hoof, making the moment more than slightly embarrassing. All I could think was, “I have to drink more water.”

Suddenly the seats of the theater were full, and while I was led to believe I was only one of four in the cast, now dozens of people were getting ready to get on stage, all dressed as if they were going to a wedding in the 1970s, in polyester leisure suit and ruffled shirts.

Holy crap — I’m out of my wardrobe — And I’m not even sure what wardrobe I’m supposed to be wearing.

Still in my seat, my eyes tighten, whatever had effected my hand, is now effecting my neck, making even holding my head upright difficult. Embarrassed, in front of all these people I’m meeting and working with for the first time, I joked with a pained-twisted smile, “I really need to drink more water.”

I was becoming more and more prune-like… Eyes closed. Shriveling up in a ball of cramps… When, the most kind, familiar, female voice speaks to me in a whisper.

She touches my shoulder, consoles my nerves, releases the tension in my body, and then kisses me ever so gentle on my forehead. It felt so real, I woke from my dream.

I looked around my bedroom.

… and it was then that I remembered I had a spicy quesadilla the night before, and probably just needed a glass of water.


So, what’s going on?

Besides clearly needing to drink more water.

Well, yesterday, while talking with a friend at the gym (Kelly), I found out that years ago, I had the same manager as Jon Hamm and Christina Hendricks.

I always felt I had met her previously, and there was also something familiar with him, but I wasn’t sure why. Apparently, we had all left that particular manager around the same time, before their “Mad Men” success.

PROMO POSTCARD BEN ALEXEarlier in the day, another friend (Tod), who is helping me on on Wednesday, doing harmony for the song I’m singing at a club called Don’t Tell Mama’s… (Details Here), asked if I’d help him out in his show this coming weekend.

I really don’t know anything other than, it’s at the Cavern Club (Details Here),  I’m playing a very small cameo, which comes in at the end of the show, and it was originally supposed to be played by a woman.

And yeah, Tod wears a 1970s type leisure suit (in the show), and his wife (in the show), is really a dude in drag, and there’s four characters.

Lastly, on Sunday, I’m heading up to the University of California, Santa Barbara to speak with a group of young actors… And the last time I did anything like that, was a few years ago, and the “talk” occurred in a large theater.

- Quiche Out


Bloody Moon

INSTAGRAM#2The other day we had a blood moon, and luckily my friend Ida texted me ahead of time…

At 12:00AM I went out into my driveway, with skunks racing past, opossums lurking in the dark, and my neighbor’s flood lights illuminating the concrete, for twenty or so minutes I watched an amazing lunar eclipse, and took some photos with my camera.

That night I posted a few of them on Facebook and Instagram, and received lots of likes, a few shares, and even saw a few people “borrowing” my images without giving any photo credit. That part wasn’t all that cool, but still, I’m flattered that they liked the pictures.

Today I realized some of you might not be on those sites, or may have missed those posts, and I should share the pictures with you here. Initially I thought to take the pictures and video in case I ever wanted to record “Old Devil Moon.”

- Quiche Out

Just as a polite mention, and most people do, if you “borrow” something on-line, it’s always nice to ask, officially link, or give proper credit, especially when that person is going to see you’ve “borrowed” the content.



And a 21 second video:

On Stage (this coming) Wednesday Night

PROMO POSTCARD BEN ALEXHonored to be back Don’t Tell Mama for “Happy Hour Live On Stage with Ben and Alex,” this coming Wednesday, as they celebrate with the songs of Doris Day.

I never know what to expect…
But I do know I’ll be singing one song.

The card is stacked with friendly talent.
I personally know them all, except Bill Jones, from the show GLEE…

The show is about an hour long.
Ben and Alexander are very funny…
And did I mention it’s FREE. Yup. Free.
Wednesday, April 23rd, 8PM start.

For you performers, Ben and Alexander are approachable and there about 7:15.
I’m pretty sure, like last time, there will be a singers’ open mic afterwards with the very talented pianist Gregory Nabours on the black & whites…
So, if you want to sing, bring your notebook of sheet music (bound and in the right key).

- Quiche Out

For more info: See FACEBOOK event page



And… Happy Dance

Two days ago I posted a blog entitled, Ooo The Horror… It was that I had just started writing a new script and spending most of my waking hours obsessing on it, or over it. Even some of my sleeping hours as I slept with note-cards nearby so I could wake up several times each night to pen some ideas down. (Translating them in the morning is always fun.)

Well, obsessive-compulsive behavior does have its bright side, and tonight I’m just about ready to start my official happy dance. That is to say that I feel like I’ve just put my metaphorical pen down on a very robust skeleton draft. From start of this script’s concept 5 days ago, to a rough and ugly 77 pages tonight (though the first 45 which are pretty dang tight)…

Tomorrow (or Thursday), the ever challenging rewriting work will start.

Yes, rewriting… I’m sure I’ll have to shred some characters. Tighten dialogue. Murder descriptions. Cut scenes. Bleed pages… Did I mention it was a horror script? Who knows when the “finished” script will be completed, what will happen with it, or if it will ever be seen by eyes other than mine…

However, as I’ve written about it before, because it some times is a long time between “wins,” we have to learn to celebrate the “wins” that come our way, or that we earn. calvin_dancing

So, while I “missed” an open mic that I was thinking of going to tonight, and it’s too late now to blast music… And I’ve already started my desk-chair dancing… I do still owe it to myself to “get up now and dance now,” or whatever that lyric is.

Okay, it’s times like this I wish I worked in a job with other people.

But, so it goes…

DJ spin it, or cue it, or hit it, or press it.

- Quiche Out

Question: Do you have favorite HAPPY DANCE music you rock out to with your wins?

99% Love

I just turned on the TV to watch a little bit of the news, taking a break after coming back from lunch after five hours of pretty much non-stop script writing. I’ve been on a tear lately, 62 pages in since this past Thursday (the first 40 pretty tight.)

My already outdated TV warms up and five glossy 20-something-year-olds strut to the bright stage of a daytime talk show. I’m about to turn the channel, when the female hosts asks… How they got discovered for the show they appear on, saying something like, “So you all saw they were casting for this show and you…”

When the seemingly, “leader of the pack,” says something like, “Gah. That’s not how it was at all. Instagram is like a big part of all of our lives, and a producer contacted me and said, ‘Do you want to be in a TV show?’ So, I contacted all my friends.”

I don’t have a DVR, so please excuse me for paraphrasing.

Twenty plus years in the business. Classes. Heartbreak. Bites of success. Dozens upon dozens of appearances. On some of the biggest shows and commercials on TV. Dozens of songs sung live and on video. Dozens of plays, sketches and scripts written… Plays. Improv. Short films. Videos. Editing. Producing. Shooting. Directing… And someone with an Instagram account gets called and asked if they want a TV of their own.



And I wonder why I can get depressed at times. And yes, at the same time I’m grateful, realizing I’m one of the “lucky,” ones.  Lucky that I’m able to make a “decent” living, “winning” roles, that I audition for, “against” other talented people who are mostly in the same situation.

Oh, and besides making a living at what I do, another positive note. Yesterday, a dear 88 year old woman, I’ve never met before, from New York wrote me out of the blue.  A fan letter. After complementing my singing and writing, she suggested that I rent a barn every Saturday night, throw peanut shells on the floor, and invite my friends to come hear me sing. It kinda broke my heart a little to tell her, that I don’t think there’s a barn to rent within miles of where I live, and in Los Angeles, I’d end up sued because of someone’s peanut allergy.

By the way, the show is called something like “The Rich Kids Of Beverly Hills.”  After seeing this today and seeing Mark Cuban in a commercial the other day, and a dozen other gazillionaires pitching other products… I don’t think 99% of America doesn’t like the “1% ,” they complain so loudly about… I think the “99%” worships the “.01% .” Which, if that’s what you’re into… Great.

I’m not.

My TV was shut off after the pricey princess’s declaration of success, and my computer fired back up. After I finish, and maybe post this to Instagram, I’ll be back scripting my newest feature film, till I take my next break.

BTW, so you know, I am in no way ungrateful for my “wins,” I truly am, and the fan note, all “fan” notes. So, Lynn if you’re reading this, it truly touched my heart to hear from you.  And while I don’t have the success a few kids from Beverly Hills instantly got, your note was priceless. It’s always priceless when someone finds the time to complement what I pursue hours upon hours every single day… Whether singing, blogging, scripting, writing, editing, producing, acting, or even auditioning…

- Quiche Out
PS. I know I’m not young and hot, rich or wildly popular… Which are all okay. A thing is what a thing is… But this insta-success, because of an Instagram profile… Is exactly why I try, and ask people to pass on videos, like pages, and subscribe to channels. Pimping and PR is not what I love to do, but I realize it’s part of the game, and how some out there in the game, or not even in the game, “win.”

Ooo the Horror!

OothehorrorMaybe it’s just how my mind works… How I always seem to take situations, comments, and things and make them into riddles and problems that my brain will work on till my subconscious discovers possible answers.

Recently I asked via social media, who enjoyed horror movies and what sort of horror films they enjoyed… The answers were somewhat fascinating. Most people that enjoy the varied and multifaceted genre have very specific types of stories they enjoy and other types they absolutely don’t… ie. One may love vampires and Frankenstein, but hate slasher films and the Wolf-Man… Or love erotic-suspenseful supernatural and comic/campy stuff, but hate anything with zombies or bacteria and viral infections… Or perhaps they love psychiatric thrillers, anything Hitchcockian and Sci-Fi monsters, but hate stories with religious overtones or torture porn…

It started to seem that everyone who that loves to be frightened by films, has their own very distinct way of wanting to be frightened.  I then asked if there was a correlation between the love of being scared by horror movies and the love of thrill rides at amusement parks… And while I found the answers again interesting, there seemed to be more of a correlation between getting older and a non-love of roller-coasters.

I’m no expert on the genre, and wouldn’t consider myself a fan of horror for the most part, and reading books in the genre disturbs me even more… But, I will tell you that nothing freaks me out much as writing them.

When I saw “Children Of The Corn” as a teenager, my mind would roll the various situations around in my head, over and over, trying to makes sense of it all, as if I could save myself and others were I put in the situation… Every breeze flashed me back to moments of “what if,” and “what would I do now?”

After every “…Walking Dead” episode my mind races through and breaks down everything I witnessed, what the characters did that was smart, what was ridiculous, or what was forced by writers trying to make compelling TV. Let’s be honest if characters were always smart in that series very infrequently people would ever really be in danger, and it’d probably be a snooze-fest. For instance… Very early on the characters figured out that if they covered themselves in zombie flesh/blood/stink and walked slowly zombies seemed to leave them alone… Yet, they seemed to forget this simple rule… And Michonne showed them that if she had armless/jawless zombies with her, again zombies left her alone, let that was only repeated one other time. I mean given those two ideas, who wouldn’t constantly be taking zombie blood baths, and surrounding themselves with hordes of armless/jawless new best friends. BTW, this is not a pick on horror films, or “The Walking Dead” blog, as I’m a fan of the show, and honestly terribly disappointed I haven’t yet even been in to audition for the show, let alone been part of it… And no matter what the genre, I’m a fan of all well crafted writing…

Recently I’ve just watched The Ring and The Conjuring.

But like I already wrote, crafting and writing horror stories probably bothers me even more than watching them or reading them because, first, I start to notice everything around me with that spin…

YeScreen Shot 2014-04-05 at 3.11.14 PMsterday, while driving to an audition, five-pages into a brand new screenplay, I was dictating dialogue into my iPhone. Dialogue where one character warns another character about the power of God and demons… And, the very next second, in front of me is a blue PT Cruiser with the bumper sticker, stuck on the paint, “God Rules.” Now, whether that’s coincidence, a message of someone trying to get my attention, or encouragement to keep writing, I’m not sure.

Tom on Instagram:

When I was writing the original story of “Sympathy for the Devil,” and then again while I was writing the novel… Several moments freaked me out. I believe I already wrote about them in the past… But at one point I was so disturbed I called a friend who was working as a chaplain, to get her opinion on whether or not I should keep writing.

Last night was no different, I went to bed around 10:30PM with the first 11 pages written, convinced I may have already hit a dead-end, before even finishing the first act, and then I woke up at 2:30AM and stayed awake in my bed till some time after 4:15 AM, my mind spitting out horrific ideas and my fingers pressing the record button, so I wouldn’t forget anything in the morning… At the same time, of my hyper-alert-and-yet- half-asleep-comatosed state I heard distant sounds of what might have been coyotes, and the nearby sounds of feuding raccoons, running under my windows.

And the second reason I might find writing these things terrifying is, knowing that these ideas can percolate inside of me, that they are somehow a part of me, and that I have a great capability of expectorating evil. Yeeks.

I have another horror film to watch today, “The Haunting,” as I continue to re-reexamine the genre, between crafting my own pages…Will I complete this semblance of a story? I don’t yet know… Besides “Sympathy for the Devil” I have completed three other horroresq screenplays, and started another two which are currently resting, unfinished in peace, along with some other dead ideas.

Someday I hope to have a few of them, along with other written genres, made into films that those that enjoy, can enjoy. I have never thought of myself as a “horror” writer, but as I’m writing this blog I’m now remembering how much I did enjoy making haunted houses when I was a kid and scaring the bejesus out of people.

LINK to book on Amazon:

If you’ve already read “Sympathy for the Devil” and wrote a review, thank you… If you haven’t please consider it. The popularity of anything these days (YouTube hits, Twitter followers, Book sales…) these days seems to help in many ways (like getting on “The Walking Dead”).  I promise, if one of my other stories gets sold and made into a movie, or I take another six months and turn one of these stories into another book, or if I ever do get on “The Walking Dead,” as an actor, those who subscribe to this blog will be among the first to know.

Alright, enough procrastination, I got to get back to the crafting of evil.

- Quiche Out

Post note: I will tell you that the 1st time I met Courtney Gains, who played Malachai in, “Children Of The Corn”… When we were both seated in a van, heading to set, in fields of high grass… It was a bit odd. BTW for those that don’t know, Courtney and I were cast as outlaw-brothers in a Hallmark TV Western entitled “Desolation Canyon.” Since that month of working together our paths have crossed several times.