Stories and insight in the world of showbiz and beyond.

Monday, January 09, 2006

ICH BIN EIN ALTES FARZEN

One thing about writing a blog when you have reached my age is you can say whatever you want. Question: Where does an old male elephant walk? Answer: Anywhere he wants.

I have often wondered if whenever Ronald Reagan thought of John F. Kennedy’s famous words at the Berlin Wall, he mouthed to himself, “Ich bin ein altes farzen.”

What a perfect segue to my subject. Age reared its (red) head at this year’s Rose Bowl Parade. It seems that 62-year-old parade narrator Stephanie Edwards was relegated to the cold and rainy bleachers while her partner of many years (pun intended), Bob Eubanks, sat warm and comfy in the announcer’s booth.

According to Ms. Edwards, “When a women is 62, she is not going to be seen as being as marketable as a man of the same age would be, not by marketers or the public.”

Do I detect a note of bitterness? If so, why is it that so many Hollywood people just don’t get it? In show biz, youth works. Age doesn’t. And, working hard at what doesn’t work will never make it work.

I’m not just talking about women. A few years ago I was doing pretty well doing voice-over commercials. I began to notice the auditions were getting fewer and fewer. I called my agent who informed me quite bluntly that I was just too old. “Too old to do voice-overs?” I asked, “No one ever sees me.”

I said this knowing it was not always the case. Even though blind audition tapes narrow the selection down to two or three people, the client usually wants to meet the finalists before the deciding audition tape. Even though the listener will never know, the client does. And that’s enough to cook your old goose.

Hey, I’m OK with that. I had my day. If everyone tried to stay around too long, there wouldn’t be room for the younger guys. Right? Life goes on.

At first, however, I was understandably chagrined (which means I did not grin). I did some research. One thing stood out as the great equalizer: HAIR DYE. When I see my ageless men compatriots who, till this very day, are still hot and in the competition, there isn’t a grey hair in sight. I, on the other hand, with my hair AND beard, stand out like Santa Claus at the mall. My advice to all male ageless wanabes? Stock up on Grecian Formula.

Going back to the Stephanie Edwards interview, she also lamented, “The public does not want to look at a 62-year-old woman with as much sexual interest as the public would look at a 62-year-old man."

To Stephanie I have to say in all honesty that I much prefer looking at a 62-year-old woman than a 62-year-old man; especially a beautiful red head like you. But, keep this in mind: I don’t really count. After all, I’m a member of a dying breed (double pun intended).

7 Comments:

Blogger Throatwarbler said...

Hey, Lloyd! Have you checked out this site that posts old TV tickets with commentary? They have one of yours up.

www.oldtvtickets.com

6:03 PM

 
Blogger Lloyd Thaxton said...

Thanks for the tip.

7:57 PM

 
Blogger THE ROCK RELIC said...

So Ms. Edwards doesn't flatter herself as being sexy and in demand at age 62? Hmmm ... wonder if she's heard of Florence Henderson? Doris Roberts? Of course, Ms. Loren, Fonda and/or Ann-Margret. It's the attitude, not the hair or cellulite, that makes the star.
Too old for VOICEOVERS?? Where's that leave Lithgow and others -- most notably, the famous voice of Durante when he vo'd a famous Christmas classic? My friend, that "age" thing narrows a lotta minds. You've still got the touch ... believe it!
As far as Mr. Eubanks goes (wasn't his dad the famous "E. Pluribus Eubanks"? Thought I saw his name somewhere ... or something close to it): wasn't he the object of ageism himself? Why'd they treat him like he was frail?
Lloyd, there's always a need for quality ... and age can't diminish or erase that. Life isn't age ... it's attitude!
Now ... about Grecian Formula: I've sent for my hair, should be back from NC in about sometime. If and when it returns, I'll try it. PS you forgot to include the mailing address of the Grecian who has the Formula.

11:20 PM

 
Blogger robovox said...

I thought people WATCH the parade and LISTEN to the commentators. Stephanie Edwards' voice is much more pleasant to listen to than her younger replacement's. And that replacement had absolutely no chemistry with Bob Eubanks -- so much for the magic of youth.

Actually, I just want to get on your mailing list. However, your blog is much better than the one that my somewhat flaky aunt started, so maybe I'll check it out with some degree of regularity.

11:16 AM

 
Blogger a1tiguy said...

Re: the Stephanie Edwards dust-up, Lloyd...I haven't heard anyone mention that she probably didn't HAVE to do the show in the rain...she could have passed up the 50 large and said sayanara..I prefer her in the booth too, but suspect she knew what she was doing.

1:11 PM

 
Blogger jtbwriter said...

Hi Lloyd!

Thanks for the opportunity to weigh in on Stephanie Edwards and her very righteous :) comments....
She was right, unfortunately she was very rudely reminded that the majority of the TPTB are under 30, do not appreciate quality as opposed to cup size, and that like wine good reporters/commentators get better with age.

That said, I think she knows by now she is loved and appreciated by the multitudes and her presence in the pouring rain was valued by the viewers.

Kudos to your new site-and thanks for letting us frustrated writers who are no longer welcome at the "old grey lady" downtown a place to converse and vent!

Hasta la pasta!

jtbwriter

4:10 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i remember the L. T. show when it had excellent guests like the Byrds, the Leaves, Knickerbockers, the Four Seasons, Sam the Sham, etc. I was only 13, 14 then and couldn't go to clubs or concerts. Is there going to be a dvd of appearances of these acts? It would be on my must have list. Steve K.-Boston MA

11:18 AM

 

Post a Comment

<< Home