Wednesday, July 1, 2009


We (myself and co-host Tom Kramer) are finishing up another "season" of the FUNNY IS MONEY RADIO SHOW streaming nightly on Shokus Internet Radio @ 7PM Pacific - [9PM starting July 13th]. Check out the station here.

Season 3 started January '09, and we have had some amazing guests - America's houseguest Kato Kaelin, the great director (Fridays, Not Necessarily the News) John Moffitt, comedy writer (Seinfeld, Fridays) Bruce Kirschbaum, veteran writer (Kojak, etc.) Jim Miller, exec. producer of Penn&Teller's Bullshit Star Price, writer and racounteur Jack Carrerow, veteran comedian and head writer of Fridays Jack Burns, producer and writer (Seinfeld, Curb Your Enthusiam) and director (Borat, Bruno) Larry Charles. And we did a couple of "Family Shows" as we used to refer to them on the Carol Burnett Show - i.e., no guests - Tom chatting with writer/producer Bob Illes (Carol Burnett, Silver Spoons) about his career, and Bob chatting with writer/director Tom Kramer (Fridays, Curb Your Enthusiasm) about his career.

People have been CLAMORING for these chats to be available on DVD (since we can't archive them on the shokus radio website) or download. But that is going to change soon.

Other greats from the past who have appeared on the show - Ken Levine (Cheers, Frasier), Alan Katz (MASH, Sanford&Son), Roger Eschbacher, David Wechter (Penn&Teller's Bullshit), Andy Guerdat (Saved by the Bell: The College Years), Bob ("Super Dave") Einstein, Dennis Perrin (Bill Maher), Mitch Glazer (Blind Date), John Ratzenberger (Cheers' mailman), Mike Cerrone (The Threee Stooges movie), Brian Pollack (Cheers, Hollywood Squares), Barry Kemp (Coach, Newhart), and others I probably forgot at the moment. There are also two episodes wherein I devote the entire hour to the story of one "failed pilot" - Sylvan in Paradise, starring Jim Nabors for NBC in 1986 - and one insane adventure dealing with "independent producers" in Orlando, Florida, in 2000, producing a pilot - Love Thy Neighbor, starring Sherman Hemsley.

The underlying theme of the radio show is how various extemely successful writers got started in the business, how they persevered... as well as a lot of great behind-the-scenes stories.

Let me know of your interest. Tom Kramer will be on assignment for the rest of the summer, so we will probably go into reruns as of mid July. Other great pioneers and playas we have in the pipeline - Mitzi McCall, John Rappaport, Chris Bearde, Stuart Pankin, Jeff Garlin and (if I can convince him) David Duclon.


Don't ask me how I got involved in the Ms. Caribbean USA 2009 contest... go here. Well I DO know, I just didn't want you to ask. It has been an interesting look into the world of beauty pageants. According to a former Miss Jamaica (in another pageant), Daisi Pollard, there are 40,000 pageants worldwide. We only know the biggees, like Miss California, (well we do now, thanks to homophobe Carrie Prejean), Miss Universe, Miss World, Miss USA and, I guess it's still going strong, Miss America. But Ms. Caribbean (careful! there's a MISS Caribbean contest in Florida) is just below the radar but nevertheless offers a $5,000 prize to the winner, among other prizes to various contestants. It is being held at the Celebrity Centre Theatre in Hollywood on July 4th, 2009 at 5 PM. I highly recommend it. Check out the women on the website. Interestingly "beauty" per se is not the highest priority of assessment from the judges, although of course there will be swimsuit and gown promenades up and down a runway. There is much larger emphasis on talent, and one-on-one interviews with judges (one of whom is the aforementioned Ms. Pollard). My stake is that I am sort of a mentor to Haitian native, NAHOMIE MERILAN, quite a talented beauty, whom I first saw performing as an actress and model at the World Championships of Performing Arts in Los Angeles in 2008, which I've written about elsewhere. (PS, There is an Internet voting element to the website; I urge you to vote for her!) She speaks little English, but is fluent French and Creole - thus she is about the most authentic "Caribbean" in the Ms. Caribbean contest. The other contestants are largely American born, with a couple of exceptions. But Nahomie will have a translator at the contest, and thus add some international flavor to the proceedings. I believe there will be a little "after party" at Kassava Caribbean restaurant (really excellent) on 3rd & Sherbourne in West Los Angeles. The owner thereof, actor/writer/director Jean-Claude LaMarre will be a co-host of the event, and I'm sure is providing some of the underwriting of the event. More later when results are in.