Tuesday, September 4, 2007

I Really Should Write THAT Book.

My friends laugh at me because I won't agree to write the book retelling the thousands of Hollywood stories I have to tell - stories that took place when I made my living as a stand up comedian in Burbank and other Los Angeles burbs. At the time, I lived in a Beverly Hills mansion, worked during the day for the California Student Loan Finance Corporation on Pico just east of 20th Century Fox, and I also worked the studios through connections in their respective transporation divisions. I didn't have a permit to do what I did, I had friends who had friends who wanted cars, vans, trucks, and other vehicles transported from one studio lot to the other - they paid me. At night, most often on weekdays when it was slower, I made my living as a stand up. (Today I do most of the jokes from a seated position)

Keep in mind this was before the invention of the cell phone, however, my father was an electrical engineer at Western Union so the ideas for the prototypes of all wireless phones and television/phones was there - it just wasn't common. I had to find out about gigs the old fashioned way: by stopping into the venue to see if they had an opening. Sometimes I would have to stay a while to be sure they had openings and other times the manager(s) wouldn't let me leave their premises for fear they'd need me. I was fun - cheap, and to be honest, funnier when I had to make the gags up on the spot. Some of my best work is done on the fly - oops, that didn't' come out sounding too well did it? Oh well - you know what I mean!

Spontaneity is my middle name. It was going to be my first, but my dad didn't' know how to spell it so he kept it simple. I'm Jude. To be honest, I enjoyed to days of old and the adventures of the over 600 concerts I attended - half of which I never paid for, just given tickets because I either wedged my way in, made someone laugh, or convinced someone up front that I was part of the show. I did that well enough to gain access to the mansion jobs as well. Before long I never had to pay a hotel fee - I just babysat homes and literally got paid for hosting parties while the host was gone. Yes, there are stories that go along with that sort of thing. I lived at 1100 Carolyn Way before Heidi Fleiss made the place her Playgirl Mansion of sorts. I lived in a house off of Miracle Mile on Fairfax that years later was the scene of a double murder and suicide - I hosted parties for people everyone would know now, but then they were borrowing clothes from me, and even money to get cigarettes so they could look cool for the producers and directors that would be at the parties.

One movie I was in, and I have to be honest, I own the DVD but haven't looked for myself for fear I may fall over - is LOVE SCENE with Tiffani Boeing and Frank Luz. It was a Raleigh Production, I believe directed by Townsend - not sure, but it was filmed at the Carolyn Way house - Grayhall is the actual name of the mansion. During the filming I stopped production to force a man out of the pool that I believe would have drown. If I told you his name you'd die! A year later he came to Oklahoma to be present at his movie's premiere. He saw me and he told me he was going to leave me in his will for having saved his life. I doubt he does, but it was great to see that he hadn't died in the 300+ days since I fished him out. I remember I had to redress and have my makeup and hair done over and I was just an extra - but I was SEEN and the continuity must remain in tact!

I should write THAT book. It would have to include the making of The Outsiders, Rumblefish, Tex, One From the Heart, Tank, Gremlins, Return of the Jedi, Oh God! You Devil, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, and a few minor films that will never see the light of the big screen - video only...such as Love Scene. I worked on the Dukes of Hazzard, several WB programs such as T.J. Hooker, and 20th Centuries Trauma Center - but you'll never once see my name in the credits. The way Hollywood is run, it's a miracle they aren't fined more often than they are - but that's part of the glamour or non-glamour I suppose. It doesn't mean there aren't stories to tell - smiles to remember (Emilio) and friendships made (Simone Raines). I just hope the memories never actually go away when I get old - that seems like more of an appropriate time to tell some of the stories I have hidden in my head - my heart, my journals.

Somethings are just better left untold.

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