"I guess I have a lot of problems, so many that I don't have time to go into them all in detail. Suffice it to say I'm anal, obsessive, vain, quick to temper, overly introspective, lazy, judgmental, insecure, and self-righteous. Probably the most annoying thing about me is that I'm hugely opinionated. But I kind of make up for that by always being right."

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Unsettling Accounts (Part 2)

(Continued from previous posting)

Dana Carvey was my most famous friend. I was lucky enough to have known him before the Saturday Night Live days, so I wasn’t totally blown over by his notoriety. Dana gave me the opportunity of writing a script for him. We worked on the plot together, and I had just started writing the script when he suddenly pulled the plug on the project. I was devastated, partially because I was having money problems at the time. Plus, this was not only going to pay a lot, but was, according to Dana, a done deal. Dana ended up giving me some money for my time, but it was only a fraction of what I expected to make. I was furious. Of course, now, in retrospect, I see that he was only doing what he thought was best for his career. I’m also sure that he thought he was being more than generous with me. I’m sorry, now, that it hurt our friendship. Despite his fame, he was very down-to-earth, and possessed an uncanny amount of common sense. I will never forget watching Dana in the clubs. No comic could come close to his command of an audience. And I’ve never seen anybody “kill” more consistently than Dana. Why he is not a giant superstar is beyond me.

The two nicest people I have ever known are my friends Patty Smith and Gary Stewart. Patty died last year. I wish I could say that her spirit lives on, but of course we all know that’s a bunch of crap. My friend Gary, however, does live on, but without me. I met Gary when he was a bigwig at Rhino Records. He gave me a ton of great CDs and I fell in love with him. Gary is generous to a fault. If you go out to dinner with him, you literally have to wrestle him for the check. It got to the point that I wouldn’t ask him about some favorite artist of mine from the ‘60s, because he would invariably research the guy and buy me his CD. I once admired a book at his house and he insisted I take it. That’s the kind of guy he is. Plus he gives generously to charities and is politically active. Makes you want to smack him, right? Well, when I was forced to sell my house after my divorce and buy another one, I found myself in need of a lot of money between the time mine sold and when I moved into my new place. Naturally, I turned to Gary. But when I was late in paying him back (because the sale of my house hit an unexpected snag) Gary felt I had used him. Because I was suicidally depressed during this time, I hadn’t thought to contact him about the payment being late. For him, this was literally the straw that broke the camel’s back. I can say, in all honesty, that my life is greatly diminished by Gary not being in it.

So if you’re ever thinking of loaning a friend money, or investing in some business scheme of theirs, take it from me -- don’t.

On the other hand, you don’t know me at all, so feel free to send me as much as you like.