Comic hypnotist Flip Orley was interested to hear about my wife’s experience with being hypnotized. It started when she was in college and was hypnotized by James Mapes. Flip was my guest on the Classic Hits 93.1 Comedy Couch.
As I told Flip, she was once inadvertently hypnotized while we were in the audience, watching a hypnotist who worked as a warm-up comedian for sitcom tapings. More recently, she was an audience volunteer for a hypnotism show at the Tennessee Valley Fair.
Our conversation reminded me of another story about a hypnotist. When I worked at KROQ, I booked Tom Silver as a guest on the Kevin & Bean show. He hypnotized a particularly susceptible intern named Big Tad. While Tad was under, the show’s writer, Jimmy Kimmel, would come up with outrageous suggestions for Tom to give Tad.
Flip is headlining at Side Splitters Comedy Club this weekend. One of his subjects contacted me via Twitter to say they had a great time. I’m pretty sure that Rob Howard did so under his own free will, as opposed to following some post-hypnotic suggestion.
— Knoxville Rob Howard (@KnoxvilleRob) February 14, 2014
A year ago, Dom Irrera did a surprise set during open-mic night at Side Splitters Comedy Club. My wife and I happened to be there to see it. I knew it was one of the things I wanted to ask him about when I had the opportunity to interview him on the Classic Hits 93.1 Comedy Couch prior to his appearance at Side Splitters this weekend.
Dom and I also talked about prop comics, Seinfeld, KROQ, the Last Supper, Telly Savalas, Jimmy Fallon, Jay Leno and more. Here’s the proof:
Writing about The War of the Worlds prompted me to search for KLOS in the database of The Paley Center for Media. I found a reference to the live broadcast we did on the Mark & Brian Show in 1997, as well as our live broadcast of The Witch’s Tale in 1998.
Then I searched for KROQ. I found the entries for two weeks worth of broadcasts that the Kevin & Bean Show did from the museum’s New York studio in 1995. All the entries listed me as a participant. One in particular gave a description of a bit that Jimmy Kimmel and I did:
One in this series of morning radio shows featuring the team of Kevin (Kevin Ryder) & Bean (Gene Baxter) on KROQ-FM in Los Angeles. This program, part two of two, originates from the radio studio at The Museum of Television & Radio in New York as part of a tie-in to the MTV Music Video Awards held nearby at Radio City Music Hall. Highlights of Kevin and Bean’s final broadcast from The Museum of Television & Radio in New York during their two-week visit include: Kevin and Bean talk to their producer, Frank Murphy, about what gifts, if any, he bought for his wife and children while in New York; the hosts play “Tomorrow” by Silverchair; next there’s a news update from “Doc on the Roq” and a sports report from Jimmy “The Sports Guy” Kimmel; the hosts then play “Say It Ain’t So” by Weezer and “Come Out and Play” by the Offspring; Frank and Jimmy venture out to find gifts that Frank can bring home with him; Kevin and Bean play “Natural One” by Folk Implosion and “Mysterious Ways” by U2; they get updates from Frank and Jimmy as well as from “Michael the Maintenance Man” in Times Square; and the hosts end the show by playing “All Over You” by Live and “Evenflow” by Pearl Jam. Includes commercials and promos.
After that, I typed in another set of call letters from my past. When I searched for WAVA, I found the listings for a series of “Best of Don & Mike” tapes that I gave to the museum. The collection includes a memorable visit from comedians Bobcat Goldthwait and Charles Fleischer. One bit is described as “Frank runs around 7-Eleven.” Another is labeled “the birth of Frank Jr.”
Jon Rosner tweeted me with an amazing find. It was a behind-the-scenes video of the late Wesley Willis in the KROQ studio. Kevin & Bean, Carl Caprioglio and I are also seen and heard. Bean is asking Wesley about Sublime but Wesley wants to sing a song about me.
The Cheesecake Factory’s director of public relations, Alethea Rowe, came over to our table as my wife and I were taking pictures of our food. We were part of a packed house during the restaurant’s training nights at the new West Town Mall location.
I was taking a picture of my Moroccan Chicken and my wife was photographing her Chicken Marsala. Alethea turned my plate so I could get a better view of the food. For dessert, I ordered the Banana Cream Cheesecake
Vice President of Guest Experience Linda Candioty introduced herself and asked how we were enjoying dinner. I learned that she has worked for The Cheesecake Factory since its early days and that Linda’s Fudge Cake is her recipe.
Linda and Alethea were visiting from the Southern California headquarters. During our conversation we discovered that we had several mutual friends at KROQ. Alethea sent a text message to Jay Tilles, informing him that she was talking with me. Jay has worked his way up from intern to management at KROQ.
Linda is quoted in a 1997 Forbes profile of Cheesecake founder Avid Overton. Her words from sixteen years ago still ring true today:
At Cheesecake’s Calabasas Hills, Calif. headquarters, Executive Vice President Linda Candioty sounds like a motivational speaker. “The customers come in to eat and pay and leave,” she tells a bright-faced group of about 30, “but they deserve something more. It might just be some love.”
There’s still time for you to get caught up on my latest guilty pleasure, season three of “The Joe Schmo Show.” Spike will repeat the first three episodes starting at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday before airing the fourth episode at 10:00 p.m. Some of the episodes are also available online.
Except for one guy, everyone on “The Joe Schmo Show” is an improv actor. The regular guy thinks he is competing to win $100,000 and a job as a bounty hunter. The rest of the cast is trying to fool him while simultaneously making fun of reality show clichés.
I watched and loved the first two seasons of “Joe Schmo” too. Season one was mostly a spoof of “Big Brother” with a little “Survivor” thrown in. Season two satirized “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette.” A then-unknown Kristen Wiig played “Dr. Pat the Quack” on season one. Comedian Natasha Leggero played “Rita the Drunk” on season two. KROQ’s Ralph Garman has hosted all three seasons, playing a different character each time.
The breakout star of season three may end up being Lorenzo Lamas. The “Renegade” actor skillfully parodies Hollywood celebrities and himself. His Spike bio says he “is now taking on more comedic roles and has even started to perform standup comedy.”
KROQ posted a podcast of my friend Bean’s call-in after surgery to remove his kidney. He donated the healthy organ to KROQ engineer Scott Mason. After a week of recuperation in Los Angeles, Bean and his wife flew home to Seattle last night.
When I spoke to Bean before the surgery, he was very happy that CBS News would be recording the surgery and that he would eventually get to see his own kidney being removed from his body. The story aired today on CBS This Morning.