Wednesday, October 27, 2010

October 06-October 21

Wednesday, October 06: Taylorville, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:00 a.m. call for our 65 mile jump to Taylorville. John Moss had to pound on my trailer wall to get me out of bed 15 minutes past the call time; I was out like a light.

On top of it all, I was still having problems with my trailer lights this morning.

We were playing on a grass lot and it was a sunny day.


Casey went with me to help me solve my propane problem. Since we couldn't find a replacement hose for my regulator, he found a bolt that could be used to plug up the hole where the hose would go.


Ryan and I watched the movie, Wishmaster, before the first show, which had an average sized crowd.

There were more people at the second show, and we were treated to a pleasant night; it wasn't too cold.


Today was Jessi's last day. She is heading out to join Circus Kinoshita in Japan as a clown.



Thursday, October 07: Benld, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 50 mile jump to Benld. We were playing on a grass lot and it was a sunny day; the polar opposite of last year when we had to cancel this date because of rain.


We went to have breakfast at the little diner up the road where I spent most of my free time last year, and then Ryan and I watched the Twilight Zone movie.


Ryan, Delena, Tatiana and I walked to the Italian market on main street and had sandwiches and bought lots of Italian goodies.


We had a decent sized crowd for the first show and good business for the second show. I was worried from the looks of the town that business would be a bust, but it wasn't bad at all.


Since Jessi is gone, I was taken out of web and Fridman started setting Sarah's web. You're not going to hear me complain about it though!



Friday, October 08: Troy, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 32 mile jump to Troy. We were on a grass lot and it was a sunny day, another total opposite from last year when this lot was a muddy hell hole.


Ryan and I went out with Casey to go shopping and have lunch. While we were at Borders I bought a graphic novel called The Walking Dead that my friend Ben had recommended to me. He was right, I loved it and am now hooked!


Ryan and I watched the movie Creepshow before the first performance, which was 3/4 full.

As I was running out of the tent from opening, someone sitting by the curtain called me over and gave me some bottles of Gatorade. It was Rob Nacu, a local clown that I have corresponded with online.


The second show was also 3/4 full and Radar's family was visiting. I was frustrated in the second table act because a prop guy got in our way when Delena throws me and Ryan together. Delena couldn't get her hand on my shoulder, so Ryan got thrown into me and did a toothpick while I stood around obliviously. It really got me steamed.

After that I couldn't snap out of my funk and it was a downward spiral of comedy for the rest of the show.


Luckily I had after show activity to look forward to. Casey, Georgia, Nikki, and I drove to St. Louis to go to City Museum, which is basically a huge playground for kids big and small.


The Museum was open until 1 a.m., and we closed them down: climbing through tunnels inside and out, discovering unorthodox routes throughout the building, playing on the roof, and going down a 10 story spiral slide.


We capped the evening off by getting dinner, but all of us were falling asleep except for Georgia. I didn't get home until 2 a.m.



Saturday, October 09: Troy, IL-2:00 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.

I slept in this morning, which really isn't surprising considering the late hour I went to sleep.


We had good business for the first show, and the second show was almost full.

I was pretty beat for the second table act. I couldn't get enough height to dive over Ryan as he slid across the table, so I kneed him in the head. Then I barely had the strength to lift Delena back on the table after she fell into my arms. As a final insult to injury poor Ryan head butted my shoulder at the end of the act, making his new headache even worse.


We went to dinner with Radar's family after the shows. I was going to get the remaining issues of The Walking Dead from Border's, but they had JUST closed when we were done eating.



Sunday, October 10: Washington, MO-2:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.

We had a 5:30 a.m. call for our 82 mile jump to Washington. As I was driving, my brake lights came on. I checked the emergency brake, but it wasn't on.

As I was exiting the Interstate, I pushed my brakes and they were locked! I am very lucky that no one was in front of me on the exit, and I was able to slow down just enough to take the exit's curve without running off the road.

I was still going pretty fast though, and if someone had been right in front of me, I would have been screwed!


I pulled over on the side of the road and waited forever for the mechanics to show up. It turns out that one of the shop trucks had a flat, which explained the hold up.


I feared the worst, but it was a quick fix. A belt had broken, so Castro rigged up a slightly bigger one to get me by until I can buy the correct one. God bless that man!


We were playing on a grass lot and it was a sunny day. The first show was almost full; working inside the ring was very tiring. There was a slant in the ground running towards the front of the ring, which made running around quite a workout.


The second show was 3/4 full. Bob and Susabelle Kelmer and their daughters were visiting; also Gloria Wilkenson, who was head of wardrobe on Ringling for many years, came to see the show.


After the shows I went out with the Kelmers to eat and catch up.



Monday, October 11: Warrenton, MO-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 23 mile jump to Warrenton. On the drive, Ryan blew his front driver side tire and wound up in a ditch. Luckily no one was hurt, but the trailer was tilted precariously into the ditch.

I stopped and gave Tatiana and Delena a ride to the lot while Armando, Buckner, and Josh stayed behind to help direct traffic.

The blow out happened on a narrow two lane road that was laden with heavy traffic....of course!

Ryan had to have a tow truck bring him to the lot; he got his tire swapped out, but he did suffer a cracked windshield.


Casey and I went to Wal Mart and then to Autozone where he helped me order a new belt for my truck.

Later on I went to laundry and picked up the belt before heading back to do the shows.


Sean Carlock came back to visit today with his friend, Steve Daly. I met Steve back in 2008 when I was working in Myrtle Beach.

Luckily they saw us performing in front of an almost full house. Unfortunately they saw us working on rocks, which never leads to our best performances.

In the table act I slipped on the menu while running and fell on my hands. I tweaked my wrists and scraped and bruised my palms.


It started storming during the bee gag, which insured that no one was paying attention to what we were doing.


The second show was also almost full. Ryan wore the big butt for the 50's gags per the request of Mrs. North. She wanted her cousin, who was visiting, to see it.



Tuesday, October 12: Elsberry, MO-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:00 a.m. call for our 44 mile jump to Elsberry. We were playing on a grass lot and it was a sunny day.


Ryan and I spent our free time watching the movie, The Exorcisit.

Tom Dougherty visited again today, so we hung out with him while getting ready, and he watched the first show.


Both shows had good business. I slipped on the stupid menu again during the table act, this time after coming up from a table slide.

Naturally I did the only thing I could think of, I walloped Ryan over the head with the menu!



Wednesday, October 13: New London, MO-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:00 a.m. call for our 54 mile jump to New London. Ryan and I watched the movie, Signs, before we had to go to work.


There was an average sized crowd for the first show. My friend and former co worker Cricket, his girlfriend Chelsea, and one of the other clowns, Kelli, came to visit from the Blue Unit of Ringling.

Unfortunately they saw us in front of a small crowd.


They brought a great free roll, some of which we enjoyed at the BBQ after the shows. It was freezing outside, but the sky was filled with thousands of stars; it was quite a view.


The BBQ ended at 12:30 a.m., four hours before our call time in the morning.



Thursday, October 14: New Bloomfield, MO-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 5:30 a.m. call for our 84 mile jump to New Bloomfield. My truck's heater decided to stop working today, so it was a very cold drive.


We were playing on a grass lot and it was a sunny day. I slept all day to recuperate from the Blue Show visit last night.


We had an average sized crowd for the first show and decent business for the second show.



Friday, October 15: Columbia, MO-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 44 mile jump to Columbia. There was a dump station at the lot, so I finally got to empty my sewage tank.


We were playing on a grass lot and it was a sunny day. We went to the mall a few towns over where I did my early birthday shopping at Barnes & Noble. I bought all 10 remaining Walking Dead issues.


There was a small crowd for the first show, and they were a miserable audience. There were a few more people at the second show, and it got cold as the sun set.

Rachael Bellman came to see the show, along with some of her friends.


As I was leaving my trailer to do the jukebox gag, I opened my door and noticed that someone was standing right outside my door. That startled me in the first place, but then I looked up to see that it was Casey wearing a monster mask. That startled me even more! My legs went weak, I grabbed on to the door frame to steady myself, and I yelled, "OH...............JESUS!"

Obviously survival skills are not my forte.


A blog reader and his wife were at the second show; he mentioned to Carolyn that he was a fan, so I found him at Intermission and chatted with him. I forgot to get his name though...


After the shows Rachael and I went out to get a bite to eat and catch up.



Saturday, October 16: Brunswick, MO-2:00 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.

We had a 5:30 a.m. call for our 77 mile jump to Brunswick. We went to have breakfast after we had arrived; our waitress was cute and right up my alley, so while I was paying for my meal I chatted her up and invited her to the show.

She complained about how she had been working since 5:30 a.m. and as soon as she got off work she was going to go home and sleep.

We were all convinced that she was my soulmate; the female Steve...too bad that meant that she was too lazy and apathetic to respond to my flirting!


We had decent business for the first show and an average sized crowd for the second show.

During the first exterminator gag the bungee broke so we decided to switch to the alternate ending (shooting the beehive down) until the end of the season.



Sunday, October 17: Hamilton, MO-2:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.

We had a 5:30 a.m. call for our 78 mile jump to Hamilton. My phone died in the middle of the night, so I didn't have an alarm to wake me up. I got up about 15 minutes late.


I knew that I needed to get fuel this morning, but I started to worry when we kept going on without a diesel station in sight. I started to worry more when my truck began to hiccup and jolt.

Finally salvation was in sight ahead of one of our turns. I went past the turn and pulled into the gas station. I pulled to the first pump only to discover that it wasn't a diesel pump.

I swung around to the far end of the station, and as I neared the diesel pumps my truck shut off. I coasted the last few feet until I was next to the pump.

Whew!


I filled up my tank, but then the truck wouldn't start. I had to call Danny to alert the mechanics, because they had all taken the turn and were past my location.

Leslie, Fridman, and Castro all turned around and came back to help me out.


They tried everything to get me going: jumping the battery, hooking me up to two different trucks' batteries, switching my batteries with other ones, putting fuel in the filter....nothing worked.


FInally they started getting calls that they were needed at the lot for the seat wagons they were hauling, so they towed me to the edge of the gas station.

The plan was for them to take the seat wagons to the lot, about 20 miles away, and then come back to help me.


Before they left Castro asked me to try starting my truck one more time. It started right up!

It turns out that my starter overheated from so many failed attempts, and it just needed time to cool off.


We were playing on a grass lot and it was a sunny day. I ended up parked off to the edge of the back yard; it wasn't a bad spot at all even though I showed up way late.


We had a small crowd for the first show, and the second show was even smaller. They had everyone move into the box seats....and there were still a couple of empty chairs left!


I had thought my automotive antics were over for the day, but my trailer decided to start acting up.

I had a propane leak somewhere and my trailer batteries were not charging. Also one of my truck's batteries was shot.

Castro fixed that problem by switching a trailer battery to the truck. Since I am getting rid of the truck at the end of the season, I will just keep that fix the way it is.



Monday, October 18: Richmond, MO-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 37 mile jump to Richmond. We were on a grass lot and it was a sunny day.


Casey and I went to Wal Mart and found a diner that served the best breakfast I have had all season.


We had decent business for the first show, and we got good laughs in our gags for the first time in what seems like forever!

The second show also had a good crowd; it sure beat the past half a week.


Before the exterminator gag Tatiana came over to tell me that a big flame was coming out of my water heater. I told her it was ok because I had just lit it to prepare my post show shower.


After the gag I went back to my trailer, and sure enough, a HUGE ORANGE FLAME was coming out of a pipe in my water heater! I think I found where my leak is....



Tuesday, October 19: Lawson, MO-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 28 mile jump to Lawson. We were on a grass lot and it was a sunny day.


Today was my 27th birthday. Ryan and Tatiana got me an espresso maker, which I was very excited about.


Casey, Nikki, and I went to a mall outside of Kansas City where we went shopping and Casey treated me to a delicious lunch at an Irish Pub.


Back at the lot Ryan and I watched the hilariously awful movie, Mom and Dad Save the World.


We had decent business for both shows; if the crowds had been as responsive as yesterday, today would have been a perfect day.


In the second jukebox gag I was chasing Ryan with the broom. I brought it down to hit him just as he moved, making me almost hit an audience member....like usual.

I turned to look at Ryan, but then I heard a HUGE laugh from the audience. The lady that I almost hit got so startled that she jerked back in her chair and was teetering on the back two legs, just on the verge of falling over.

She stayed in that position for what seemed like a very long time while the audience was busting a gut.

Finally I snapped to my senses and gave her my hand to pull her back up.


Sad to say, that was the biggest laugh we got all night (and probably all season); poor woman.


After the shows we had my birthday cookout; today was a great way to celebrate the start of my 27th year of life.



Wednesday, October 20: Smithville, MO-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 27 mile jump to Smithville. We were playing on a very uneven grass lot and it was a sunny day.


This morning Chris gave me the option of being by the back door or having my trailer be level in a spot farther away. I picked having a level home, especially since he let me park my truck by the back door anyway for easy prop loading.


Later in the morning I got a knock on my door. Apparently there was a miscommunication and Fridman, the Fuscos, and I were parked in the way of the high school's football practice.

We all had to pack our trailers and ready them for travel AGAIN and then move to new spots. I ended up moving where Chris was originally going to put me this morning. That's what I get for being greedy!


We had decent business for both shows. Raul's clown gag is out for a few days because his dog, Pinky, had to go to the vet.


Ryan and John Moss made me laugh so hard in the second exterminator gag. I had been joking around with Ryan earlier in the show and said a line that made us both laugh. Unbeknownst to me, Ryan got a hold of John and fed him the line.

So as Ryan and I were laying on the ground waiting to start the gag, John said to the audience, "And now, the morality tale that is...the exterminator gag."

I about peed my pants I was laughing so hard!


Too bad my good cheer was dampened by a weak ending to the act. Tatiana was feeling sick, so she wasn't on hand to drop the beehive for us. One of the prop guys had a hard time untying the rope holding it up, so after I shot the gun the beehive wobbled for awhile in the air, and then slowly came down on Ryan.

LAME!



Thursday, October 21: Pleasant Hill, MO-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:00 a.m. call for our 68 mile jump to Pleasant Hill. We were on a gravel lot and it was a sunny day.


A group of us walked to breakfast, and then we checked out a couple of antique and thrift stores.


We had good business for the first show. A lady in the front row was turned around talking to her friend when I almost hit her with the broom in the jukebox gag. When she finally noticed what was going on, I said, "Hey, pay attention!", which got a big laugh.


We had a full second show and they were a good audience. After the shows we went to a little local bar with Sorcha, the Norths' daughter, and her boyfriend, Mark.


Monday, October 25, 2010

September 28-October 05

Tuesday, September 28: St. Charles, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:00 a.m. call for our 26 mile jump to St. Charles. There was an RV dump station at the fairgrounds we are playing, so I attempted to dump my tank.

After pulling the handle, nothing was coming out. I tried again with the same results. Later on, Casey told me that it was probably because I had driven my trailer up on a curb to get as close as possible. That caused my trailer to be at a tilt, which probably prevented any sewage from coming out. I hope he is right!


Jessi took me to the grocery store across the street from the lot. I found black powder, which we are running out of, but it is IL state law that you need a card to purchase it.


We had small crowds for both shows; it was pretty miserable.

There was a great BBQ tonight with Casey's magician friend, Paul Lee, his friend, Steve Chezaday, and Steve's girlfriend.



Wednesday, September 29: St. Charles, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

This morning I took Ryan to an office store so he could buy binders to reorganize our gag books.


Paul Lee did something amazing for us today. He set up a visit with Marshall Brodien, the magician famous for his magic kits and for playing Wizzo the Wizard on the Bozo Show. It turns out that Mr. Brodien's house was basically across the street from the Panera where we had been getting breakfast each morning.

Casey was excited because Mr. Brodien saw him performing his juggling act as a teen, which led to Casey's appearance on the Bozo Show. I was excited because I watched him as Wizzo every day on the Bozo Show when I was a kid.

We both also had his magic kits when we were younger.


Mr. Brodien was so nice and such a gracious host. He gave us a tour of his basement, which was like a magician/Bozo Show museum. Any detail of his career that we asked about, he could remember perfectly.




Ryan and I got to pose with Wizzo the Wizard wardrobe, and I got to hold the Emmy that Mr. Brodien won for the Bozo Show.





Mr. Brodien was also generous enough to give us autographed pictures and magic card decks.



It was such an awesome experience; I'm really glad that Paul Lee could set it up for us.


Once again we had a small crowd for the first show. The second show had the biggest crowd of our two day stand, but sadly that wasn't saying much!


At least Marshall Brodien and his wife came to see the second show.



I was just sad that he saw us in front of such a dismal audience. The cast didn't even get applause for the final style of the show!


Jessi, Radar, and I rushed to an Oberweiss after the show to end the evening on a high note.



Thursday, September 30: Channahon, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:00 a.m. call for our 39 mile jump to Channahon. All the stop lights and morning traffic made the jump take FOREVER!


Casey built a prop table for us this morning; it will be used in one of next year's tour de forces of comedy.


Ryan organized the box of my truck, and I did a little bit of cleaning too. It had gotten disgusting and disorganized over the course of the season.


Both shows today were full. I felt like a jerk in the first table act when I couldn't rip the dress off of Delena at the conclusion of the gag. I tried many times to no avail; It looked like clown rape gone bad. And that is no laughing matter!


In the second table act Ryan flubbed the bit where he cleans out my ear with a rag. He just could not get the rag into my ear canal. I turned to him and said, "How did you get your wife pregnant?"

Never the slouch, Ryan quickly replied with, "I thought you did it!"



Friday, October 01: Marseilles, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 39 mile jump to Marseilles. We were on a grass lot and it was a sunny day.


Ryan and I made a couple of trips to a hardware store today so we could complete one of our props for next year; Radar helped us out as well.


A couple of hours before the show I decided to take a quick nap. I got a phone call from my friend, Cricket, that woke me from a deep slumber. When I checked my phone to see what time it was, I discovered that it was 20 minutes before the show!


I hadn't showered, I hadn't shaved, my contacts weren't in, and most importantly, I was not in make up!

I decided to forego the shower and contacts, so I hurriedly shaved (cutting the hell out of my cheek in the process), and slapped on my make up.

I made it on time for the show, but I would have been screwed if Cricket had not called me!


We had good business for the first show and the second show was almost full.


Something set me and Ryan off in the second table act, and we could not stop laughing.

Then, when Delena swung her purse behind her back to hit me in the face, her aim was way off and she nailed me in the family jewels.

I sunk to the ground and crawled around on my stomach, which broke Delena up and made Ryan laugh even harder.

It was a tough act to get through, but in a good way!



Saturday, October 02: Peru, IL-2:00 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.

We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 25 mile jump to Peru. We were on a grass lot, and it was a windy, cloudy day. It was also extremely cold!


Ryan and I watched the horror movie, Motel Hell, which featured a man wearing a pig head having a chainsaw fight with a cop. Brilliant!


Jessi and I went to lunch and then to a Goodwill, and when we got back to the lot, we met my friends, Toto Johnson and Wayne Weems.


Both shows were packed, and the audience response was great. I was happy about that because Toto mentored me as a teen and helped me to get on Ringling; I always like for people to see me at my best.


The second exterminator gag was a crazy one. My wig kept coming off at strange times, and I even used it as chest hair at one point.


Tonight we went to karaoke with Toto. I started off the evening by singing, "My Kind of Town", in the style of Frank Sinatra.

A drunken reprobate got right in my face and told me that I sucked. I was so angry that I was considering starting my first ever bar fight, but Casey had words with the guy and he ended up being friendly and buying us all drinks.


We had power all night at the lot because it was so cold. I was glad because Toto was staying over and I didn't want him to have to freeze in his sleep.



Sunday, October 03: Clinton, IL-2:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.

We had a 5:30 a.m. call for our 87 mile jump to Clinton. We were on a grass lot and it was a sunny day.


Ryan and I watched the horrible horror movie, Deranged, which organ purists might enjoy. The musical kind of organ, not the other kind...


We had a decent sized crowd for the first show and an average sized crowd for the second show.


I took Dan to Wal Mart to do some shopping, and then Jessi and I watched the movie, The Court Jester, which I had not seen in several years.



Monday, September 04: Athens, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 50 mile jump to Athens. We were on a grass lot and it was a sunny day.


Dave Williams and Rick Purdue took Dan and I to breakfast. I ended up not eating anything after calling our miserable waitress an old bat, loud enough for her to hear.

After she intentionally spilled hot coffee in my general vicinity, I decided I'd pass on a meal that she could spit in.


I went to Springfield, IL with Jessi, but I was getting sick, so I wasn't feeling up to doing much.


We had decent business for both shows. The second table act was crazy; Ryan and I were acting like ventriloquist dummies (in honor of the movie, Dead Silence, which we were watching), Delena smacked me in the face with her hand, and at the end of the act, Delena's dress came down on my head after I threw it in the air.



Tuesday, October 05: South Jacksonville, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 48 mile jump to S. Jacksonville. My trailer lights were not working this morning, a problem that I thought had been resolved, so I let Castro know when I got to the lot.


We were on a grass lot and it was a sunny day. Ryan and I watched Night of the Living Dead, and then I attempted to deal with a propane problem I was having.

One of the hoses going into one of the tanks had a leak in it. I tried in vain to find a hose in town, but there weren't any shops that carried the kind I needed.


Just when my stress was at its highest, I got some relief from the surprise visit of Tom Dougherty and Pepe Silva.

Pepe and I worked together on Ringling my last year, and Ryan and I both knew Tom from the past.


We had an almost full first show; I was happy that Tom and Pepe got to see us with a good audience. They were both very complimentary, and after the show we all had a great talk about the art of clowning that totally recharged my batteries.

The other plus was that Castro fixed my trailer light problem.


We had an almost full second show; Bill and Nancy Prickett were in the audience, so I spent some time chatting with them at Intermission.


Ryan and I shortened the bee gag some more; I am still out to lunch on how I feel about the changes.


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

September 20-September 27

I'm going to try and get off my lazy butt and get caught up on this blog.

Ryan and I are returning for a third season with Kelly Miller Circus. Not sure if the blog will be returning though; I am completely burned out on it and just the thought of updating it turns my stomach.

I may just keep my personal journal and post intermittently throughout the year; I'm not sure. Keeping up with somewhat regular updates is just too much of a pain. And when you stop enjoying something, why keep doing it?

Sorry to let you all down. I'll try and finish this with the season.



Monday, September 20: Vernon Hills, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

This morning Kerri took me and Ryan to Hobby Lobby and Wal Mart so we could buy materials for our new walkaround.


Later in the day Ryan and I walked around the mall together, and then I went for a long walk outside. Unfortunately I got caught in a downpour before I got back to my trailer.


We had an average sized crowd for the first show. Claire Wedermyer, Adam Kuchler, Andrew Adams, Brad Weston, and Doug Grew, all performers in the Chicago area, came to see us work.

Unfortunately they saw sucky clown gags, because the ring mat was extremely slick from being wet and on top of cement. Also, Ryan was sick.


Between shows we all visited with one another. Gary Podolsky, a Clown College alumni, also stopped by to say "Hi".


The second show was 3/4 full, and the ring mat was even more treacherous. Whee!

Jeannie Schwieger, Barbara Yurisich, and Suzanne Flynn came to our BBQ tonight.



Tuesday, September 21: Kingston, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

On Tuesday we had a 5:30 a.m. call for our 48 mile jump to Kingston; the drive seemed to go on forever.

We were playing on a grass lot and it was an overcast day.


Kerri left today; I was sad that she had to leave, but I was happy that we got to spend more time together.


We had average sized crowds for both shows. A storm hit at the start of the table act; what with all the noise it made, and the water coming down on some folks in the preferred seating section, no one was paying attention to what we were doing in the ring.


The second tiger chase of the evening was a disaster. The last rolling cage got stuck in the mud in the back door and blocked us from entering the tent.

We waited to see if they could get it unstuck in time, but they were still fighting with it when the music for the chase started.

Ryan and I ran into the other tent entrance and started the chase, only now we were doing the mirror image of what we normally do, which was very confusing.


The chase must have been an omen, because the second show was just horrible for me. I screwed up something every time I went into the ring. It wasn't a good way to end the evening.


There was mud in the back door from the storm; the first mud we have had in a very long time. Thank God!



Wednesday, September 22: Belvidere, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 15 mile jump to Belvidere. When we got to the lot I spent some time working on our website (www.steveandryan.com), and some of our promotional materials.


Later on I went to an auto parts store and a hardware store in an attempt to find a bolt for my truck's alternator.


It rained before the shows and during the first performance, but it didn't come down too hard, it was just steady.


We had an average sized crowd for the first show. Jessi took me to the auto parts store between shows since I picked up the wrong bolt earlier. Luckily they had the one I needed.

When we got back, it was too dark for Castro to fix the problem, so he just rigged the alternator for one more jump.


We had a decent sized crowd for the second show. There was a kid in the front row wearing a hat bearing the confederate flag. During web I swapped hats with the tyke and showed Ryan, yelling, "Long live the South!", much to his delight.


Once again there was a little mud in the back door: I began to have flashbacks to last year!



Thursday, September 23: Itasca, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

We had a 5:30 a.m. call for our 53 mile jump to Itasca. There was a Starbucks next to the lot, so I visited it a couple of times today.

There was also a little park next to the Starbucks that had ducks and humongous swans! I had never seen swans so big before!


Ryan and I latexed one of our new props and finished the new walkaround that we have been building. I then went to have lunch with Radar.


Both shows were almost full. After the show everyone moved off the lot due to the threat of rain, but the storms did not come.


We spent the night watching America's Funniest Home Videos in Casey's trailer; I had forgotten how funny that show is!



Friday, September 24: Round Lake Beach, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

It was raining lightly this morning when we all got up. We had a 6:00 a.m. call for our 40 mile jump to Round Lake Beach. It was another incredibly long drive; to add to my stress, getting diesel was a royal pain.


We were playing on a very small lot; most of the trailers were parked across the street from the tent without power.

Parking in the back door was extremely tight, but I felt very fortuitous, because I was right by the back door and had power.


It was extremely windy and cold, so we loaded up to go have breakfast. When I got back to the lot, I took Ryan to Hobby Lobby. I then went to do laundry and get my hair cut.


We had a 3/4 full first show. Ryan and I debuted our new walkaround tonight. I was sick of doing my unfunny, cumbersome snake charmer walkaround, and we were both just ready for a change.

The new walkaround went very well, and it was even better for the second show. We will be doing it in the show next year, so it is nice to get it in front of an audience for test runs.

The second performance was full, and the audience was fantastic.


Ryan had words with a cop during the second show because the policeman accused him of dumping sewage in the parking lot he was in. Ryan tried to explain to him that it was only grey water from the sink, but the cop couldn't wrap his head around that concept.


We had a 40 mile jump to Wilmette tonight after the shows.



Saturday, September 25: Wilmette, IL-2:00 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.

Jessi and I went to the mall this morning before the shows. We found an Apple store, but unfortunately we didn't have enough time to bring our Macs back to get some problems fixed.


It was a cold day, and both shows were almost full. The audiences were very hoity toity, so Ryan and I mused that we should break out our scatological humor.


Gary Podolsky, his wife, and their nephews, came to the second show. Gary's wife made delicious cookie bars as a free roll; I was loathe to share them.


A few of us went out to an Irish pub tonight and made friends with some locals.



Sunday, September 26: Woodstock, IL-2:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.

We had a 6:00 a.m. call for our 45 mile jump to Woodstock. We were playing on a grass lot and it was an overcast, cold day.


We had an average sized crowd for the first show and decent business for the second show.


I'm not exactly sure if anything exciting happened, because I forgot to take notes for this town.


After the shows we had a 52 mile jump to Downer's Grove that went on forever. I am ready to be done with urban jumps.



Monday, September 27: Downer's Grove, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

A group of us went to the Museum of Science & Industry in downtown Chicago this morning.

The main thing we wanted to see was the Jim Henson Exhibit, which had just opened a few days before on Jim's birthday.

I took my time and looked over everything in the exhibit. Georgia got to perform as a Muppet in a mock television show, and she was fantastic. I see a career in puppetry in her future!


We did a quick scan of some of the other exhibits, but there was just too much to see and too little time in which to see it.


Once we got back to the lot Jessi and I found a great diner to have lunch.

The first show was packed, and the second show was almost full.


Susan Hoss from the Brookfield Zoo joined us for the BBQ tonight.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

September 12-September 19

Sunday, September 12: Harvard, IL-2:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.
I hung out with Alex this morning until he had to head back to school in Iowa.
We had a full first show, complete with a surprise visit from Greg, Karen, and Emily DeSanto. I wish I would have known that they were coming so I could have gotten them good seats, but they had just decided this morning that they were going to come.

Kerri arrived during the first show; I was very happy to see her again. Sean Carlock, former Red Show clown, also arrived today.
It was a very fun, busy day for guests.

We had an almost full second show; we got good laughs for both performances, a rarity on a Sunday.

There was a big BBQ tonight with Adam and Elaine Burck and Tavana's mother in attendance.


Monday, September 13: Island Lake, IL-5:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 30 mile jump to Island Lake. Sean Carlock was visiting again today, and he shared some of the delicious pastries that he brought as a free roll.

Ryan, Sean, Kerri, and I went out to lunch, and when I got back I dealt with a problem my truck was having.
Castro found a U Joint that was on the verge of breaking; Danny had picked a replacement up for me earlier today, but it was the wrong size.
Luckily my friend, Don Lansu, was visiting with his wife and daughter, and they gave me a ride to the auto parts store up the road, where I got the correct one.

We had a decent sized crowd for the first show. The beehive was pulled too high in the exterminator gag, so Ryan didn't touch the ground after his first couple of bounces on the bungee.
I had to pull him down as he was bouncing, and when we both fell, I hurt my wrist. Needless to say I was not a happy clown.

We had an almost full second show, so that helped cheer me up.


Tuesday, September 14: McHenry, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 9 mile jump to McHenry. We were on a grass lot and it was a sunny day.

We are by a ton of great shops and restaurants in this town, and Kerri was nice enough to give me and Ryan a ride to some of our favorite destinations. We even got to go to a Halloween store....finally!

We had an average sized crowd for the first show, and there were slightly more people at the second show.

Tim Tegge was visiting; I chatted with him briefly after the performances. Kerri and I made dinner, but we also attended Mr. Fusco's birthday party for a little while.


Wednesday, September 15: McHenry, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Kerri and I left early this morning to drive to Hebron, IN. We played Hebron a couple of weeks ago, and I had latex sent to the town's post office.
Unfortunately the latex didn't even ship until after we had left the town! Since it was a 5 gallon bucket, I figured it would be cheaper to drive there and pick it up rather than have it shipped to another post office with the possibility of missing it again.

It was a 5 hour round trip, and we ran into some traffic around downtown Chicago going both ways, but we did get the latex, and we arrived back at the lot just in time for me to get ready for the show.

We had decent sized crowds for both shows. A group of us went out to a little bar down the road that was having karaoke; we rocked the place! Casey, Radar, and I sang a few songs and won the favor of the locals; we even got drinks on the house!
We finished up the evening at Steak 'N Shake before heading to bed.


Thursday, McHenry, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
I was feeling pretty crummy this morning after tying one on last night. There were thunderstorms in the morning and it was cool and overcast for the rest of the day.

Kerri took me into town so I could run some errands before the shows. Both performances had good attendance; it was the best day of the three day stand.

I had a rough start before the jukebox gag in the first show. I put my Converse on only to have one shoelace break. Undeterred, I put on my "mud" pair of Converse, only to have a shoelace break on that pair! Finally I settled for one new shoe and one "mud" shoe, both different sizes, but at least with laces intact.

The only other notable occurrence in the show was a little boy with a funny laugh that was busting a gut during the table act. He really cracked us up and kept us going for the act.


Friday, September 17: Elk Grove Village, IL-4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
We had a 5:30 a.m. call for our 38 mile jump to Elk Grove Village. This morning Ryan and I fixed the beehive prop, which was splitting open where the bungee comes out, and we latexed some of our new props.

Kerri went to the Brookfield Zoo while we worked. I wanted to go with her, but the latexing and repairs had to get done.

We had a full first show, and a decent sized crowd for the second show.
After work some of us went to watch the movie, "Devil"; I was the only one who liked it.
We finished up the night at Gameworks, having drinks and winning lots of tickets so we could purchase tacky crap!


Saturday, September 18: Elk Grove Village, IL-2:00 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.
It stormed this morning. I went to have brunch with my friend, Don Lansu before the shows.
Both performances had decent attendance.
'Nuff said.


Sunday, September 19: Vernon Hills, IL-2:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.
We had a 6:30 a.m. call for our 27 mile jump to Vernon Hills. We were playing in a mall parking lot and it was an overcast, cool day.

A few of us went to have breakfast, and then Kerri and I walked around the mall. Ryan and I bought suits for some promo photos we are going to have done.

I got back to the lot just in time to get into make up for the first show. Mr. Bill Machtel and his two sons were waiting for me at my trailer.
I was going to get them tickets for the first show, but the box office was swamped. They went to play glow golf at the mall until the second show, when I could get them seats.

The first show was 3/4 full; Jim Koretz was in the audience taking photos, so I talked with him during Intermission.

The second show was almost full. Not only were Mr. Bill and his sons watching, but Giovanni Zoppe was also in the audience. I spoke with all of them briefly after the show.

Kerri went to hang out with her friends at the WWE show in Rosemont tonight, so I went to Barnes and Noble after the shows. Unfortunately they were not open until 9:00 p.m. like they told me, so I only had 30 minutes to browse before they closed.

Jessi and I ended up having sushi for dinner with Casey and Georgia. It was delicious, but I ate WAY too much.