"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."

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

In the Pink

Article by Gerald Nachman in Sunday's "Pink Section" of the SF Chronicle:

If anybody embodies the perilous journey of a contemporary comedian, it would have to be Rick Reynolds, who recycles his trauma-strewn life into liberating laughs.

Reynolds was the tall, slender performance comedian with the wretched boyhood whose first show here in 1990, "Only the Truth Is Funny," brought him temporary fame, mini-fortune and, of course, lots of new trouble. Much of that is mined for comic and soulful treasure in his new show, "Happiness," now being workshopped at the Marsh through April. For a man whose career took off 15 years ago in a blaze of hoopla only to fizzle after a failed sitcom, late-night talk show appearances, a long run in Los Angeles and a bungled run in New York -- and for a guy who suffered a five-year depression, two suicide attempts and two agonizing divorces -- Reynolds is alarmingly upbeat.

Full article: Ups and Downs of "Happiness"

Monday, March 20, 2006

Yellow Ribbons

I get angry every time I see one of those “Support Our Troops” ribbons on the back of a car. I’m not supposed to say that, of course, because it implies that I don’t support our troops. And, in a way, that’s the point.

Only the most vile, cold-hearted American would not support the young men and women of this country fighting and dying on that foreign soil. When you put one of these ribbons on your car, do you really think you’re differentiating yourself from anybody? Why not put on a sticker that says “I think that sex is not only fun, but necessary for the continuation of the species?”

What a “Support Our Troops” ribbon really says is that you consider yourself a good-hearted, noble American. It’s a self-righteous slap in the face to everybody who doesn’t sport such a sticker. Either that, or you’re just a moron who actually believes that you’re making some kind of bold statement.

There is another possibility, though. You may be saying that you support this administration’s decision to go to war. But you don’t have the guts to just come out and say that, so you hide behind our troops instead.

So which is it? Are you self-righteous, egotistical, stupid, or just a coward?

(If you said "All four," congratulations!! You’re a perfect candidate to run for president in 2008!!)

Friday, March 10, 2006

More Shameless Self Promotion

From the Santa Rosa Press Democrat:

Rick Reynolds' exploration of his multidimensional angst, and its emotional opposite, contentment, are the comic hooks for his new one-man show, "Happiness."

Reynolds has been hibernating in Petaluma since his CBS sitcom "Life ... and Stuff" was canceled nine years ago. He has been earning a living selling screenplays and TV pilots, but he hasn't been onstage since 1997.

Now, Reynolds is fine-tuning a new show at the San Francisco's Marsh Theater, performing alone on a set decorated with a kitschy flamingo painting, a rattan lounge chair, two pink lamps and a throw rug -- all borrowed from his cleverly decorated "retro" home.

There's more: Finding 'Happiness' in Observational Storytelling

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.