We picked up the karaoke machine Friday while we were out and about in Springfield. We hooked it up on Saturday a few hours before the festivities started. It hooked directly into the TV so there were no extra speakers to run it to. Mistake. After the party got cranking a bit (there were about 65 people there) the TV speakers weren't loud enough for it. In addition, there was constant feedback regardless where one stood with the mike. So after attempting a dozen or so songs we simply shut it down. A complete waste of several hundred bucks. Oh, well. The party was in high gear anyway and the karaoke was simply an interesting diversion.
Rex and Angie's brother, Mike, tended bar all night and doled out the wine, beer and occasional mixed drink. Angie and I circulated as much as we could trying to catch up with everybody. It was difficult to stay too long in one place because we needed to wander about and make sure everyone was happy. Long about eleven a lot of the family and older folk were calling it a night and only the die-hard SMSUers were still there. We all gathered around a couple of tables on the downstairs patio of Chateau Del Lago and told old stories. The temperatures, even at that time of night, were still in the low nineties.
I hadn't really had a chance to eat anything all night and finally settled down with a massive plate of cocktail weenies in bbq sauce (my favorite anyway) that Ken, Angie's dad, had brought. It was an interesting conversation that ensued. Of course, we're all nearing fifty now and most of us are sort of upstanding citizens now, for the most part, so I was amused to see the conversation drift toward old stories of being arrested. There were quite a few. Nothing serious, of course, just mostly hi-jinx stories of when we were young.
By one in the morning, people began to drift out. Angie and I were exhausted. The party had clearly been a great success and I think, I hope anyway, everyone had a good time.
We collapsed into bed and woke really late on Sunday...for us that means around eight. We're early risers so sleeping that late was really something for us.
The next two days involved eating out (including some famous cashew chicken, which, inexplicably, Springfield has become known for) and a trip over to Ken and Wanda's for some huge, grilled burgers. Actually, the following morning we travelled over to Mexican Villa, a spot that was there even when we were in college, and met up with a crew of SMSUers for a late brunch. The waitress, who seemed a tad nonplussed with such a loud group of twenty or so, clearly wanted to be somewhere else. Nonetheless, a good time was had by all.
Sunday night we took Tammy and Angie's daughter, Lauren, back to the airport and they flew back to LA before us. On the airport road we encountered, oddly, two runaway pigs in the road. Not something one sees very often in LA, but apparently not out of the ordinary in Springfield. People just casually swerved around them as though this were just another two escaped pigs. No one seemed to think it odd except Angie and I. After we dropped Tammy and Lauren off and were on our way out the pigs were being arrested and read their rights.
And so it was.
It could not have been a better mini-vacation and engagement party. All had gone as planned (with the exception of the karaoke debacle) and Angie was pleased and, of course, when Angie is pleased, I am pleased.
So now we're back in LA...auditions are commencing as usual. Had an odd one a couple days ago. I was called in to read for a feature film and upon entering realized that everyone in the room was about three hundred pounds. And me. So as they all walked into the room to be shot on camera I could hear them yelling and being as bombastic as possible. I decided I couldn't compete with that and so when my time arrived I did the whole thing like I thought the wonderful old character actor, Dabney Coleman, might have done it. I don't think I was what they were looking for.
Tuesday I have a big audition for a new musical here in LA that has the possibility of going to NY. It's a musical version of the film, Garbo Talks, and is being cast by a high-profile casting director here in town that hasn't seen me yet. So today I'm heading over to my great buddy, Jim Barbour's place, to look through some of his music and get some pointers on the audition.
We picked John Bader up at the airport last night and had him over for grilled steaks. He was back from several weeks in Iowa.
And now, life back to a semblance of normalcy. We took a tour of our dream house a couple of days ago. Our fingers are firmly crossed for that.
Franny and Zooey are parked at my feet as I write this early on a Sunday morning. Hard to believe just a week ago we were at Chateau Del Lago in Old Springfield. Angie asked me this week if I would consider retiring there someday. It's a good question. I thought about it a lot.
And I decided that yes, I would.
See you tomorrow.