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Arizona Lou


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Wed Jan 1, 2020 HAPPY NEW YEAR and HAPPY NEW DECADE! On the way to Toso's to do comedy this evening, I stopped by LA fitness for my
poster trim
weekly trimming of my beard, eye brows and little quiff so I match my poster photos
and a shower. At Toso's the usual host did not show up so I produced the show and Liz F hosted the event for about four comedians and two non-comedian audience members.

Thu Jan 2 = Here at home this evening I finished my stage-light clamp system. I had bought a new, very stiff 4" x 1/4" ID spring. This afternoon I cut it into four 5/8" springs which work very well.
- On the way to Grand Ave Pizza I did a full, slow, heavy legs workout. My Viagra set this evening was a hit for the 20 audience members, including five non-comedians. Last week, at Improv Mania the same routine was sort of a dud. Viagra only works with certain audiences. I'll have to figure an exit strategy for Viagra.

Fri Jan 3 = Today I booked the 52nd show for my road tour and officially changed the name to Arizona Lou's Veterans Appreciation 2020 National Road Tour.
- On a whim, I decided to find how much it would cost to fly to Anchorage to do comedy and get in my 50th state. About $302, on Delta in August when I return from my road tour. Low and high temperatures there for August averages 53 and 61° F

Sat Jan 4 = It is very awkward to work with Termtech because they do not accept credit cards or any form of electronic payment for their termite service. Today I checked out switching to Budget Brothers for my termite service here at home. They are already doing
my Phoenix rental house located on Dahlia Drive
's termite. Right now I have no termite trails, so it would probably make financial sense if I hire them after I notice my first trail.

Sun Jan 5 = At noon I lay in the sun and then organized today's trip. I left home about 2:30 pm to make my second comedy appearance at Pho Cao in Scottsdale. I did my Basic Economy routine (I may drop the extra B) in the future.
- Then rushed off to Tod's of Green Motors to figure what we are going to do to get my new van ready to be my home away from home on my road trips.

Mon Jan 6 = Tonight my name was drawn from the CB Live bucket for a four minute set, so I did my new Hats / Alaska set

Tue Jan 7 = I went back onto Flonase to make sure my sinuses are clear for an at-home sleep study this weekend.
- Tonight was my first appearance at the Crescent Ballroom in downtown Phoenix. What an excellent crowd of 62! I lucked out and got my name drawn from the bucket. Those comedians who were not so lucky were told that they could come next month and sit around for three hours and take another chance that their name would not be called. There are better ways to select comedians at an open mic.

Wed Jan 8 = I have been backing up and repairing, as needed, about 600 past performance audio and video files on my XPS (What a job!) in preparation for offloading them so I will have more hard drive space, getting ready to download Power Director 18, which has side chain compression (auto ducking of the audio), which I plan to use to improve the audio of my two hour roast video.
- I did not make it out this evening in time for my other stops, so I drove straight to Toso's. I arrived about 6:55 and signed up 12th on the list. Among other things I did my hats and Road Tour bits. On the way home I stopped by LA Fitness, did a light then slow, heavy torso workout and passed out a few New Faces tickets and collected a few email addresses. After that I made it to Bashas just in time to get in the door before they closed and bought a pint of blueberries. The dry pint weighed slightly less than 12oz.

Thu Jan 9 = This evening's comedy was at Improv Mania down in Chandler. There was a pretty good audience there for the Hat Open Mic.

Fri Jan 10 = This afternoon I went down to Valley Sleep Center to pick up a home sleep study device, which I will use Sunday night.

Sat Jan 11 = It was rainy today so I could not go over to Todd Barlow's for help in tweaking my new Kia Sedona for a camper.

Sun Jan 12 = I added eight new email addresses to my list and sent out 425 reminders for my New Faces appearance on Thursday at the Tempe Improv down in Tempe
- This evening's comedy appearance was at the 3rd St Theater, part of the Phoenix Center for the Arts in Phoenix. After the show, three different people, unsolicited, said I had improved a lot since they last saw me.
- Next I scooted up to the Desert Ridge and Rick Bronson's House of Comedy for Kearley's Yearlies Comedy Award Show. I had the honor of being nominated for Best Old Comic award. Johnie Moss got it.

Mon Jan 13 = This afternoon I drove down to Valley Sleep Center to see the doctor and get a prescription for a new, modern CPAP machine.
- I went to CB Live early to meet with Case, the booker for the comedy club and resident good guy, about the possibility of doing a show before leaving for my road tour.
- My name was not drawn for their open mic Bucket List so I headed down to Devil's Advocate to practice some revisions to my Silly routine.

Tue Jan 14 = Good news: I will be saving some driving down to Huntsville on my tour. Bad news: An American Legion post canceled after my trying, for three months, to get them to answer my confirmation email. Doing shows for posts that do not have their act together any better than that is not a good idea, thank you, so maybe it was good news after all. There are plenty of other posts and organizations that use good business practices and are a pleasure to work with.
- Something unexpected happened at Tempe Tavern this evening. With my traditional "How Old?" opening, there was total science, that caught me with my pants down (so to speak) so I just went on with the rest of my set. Learning from the experience, when I got home, I developed a routine for such an event if it happens again in the future.
Wed Jan 15 = I'm on top of the world. My Alaska Comedy Tour was confirmed today with two bookings and going for more.
- Kevin, the usual host at Toso's was not there this evening. The comedians that WERE there asked me to host the open mic. It was a lot of fun. In addition to the normal duties of hosting, it was the first time I had the specific goal of keeping the crowd pumped during the entire show. To celebrate my 28,000th audience member tonight, I gave away two $10 Devil's Advocate gift cards.
- On the way home I did my semi-monthly grocery shopping at Winco Foods.

Thu Jan 16 = What a full day! I started my trip at 2:30pm with Preferred Home Care in Tempe for a new high tech CPAP machine, then went to LA Fitness, 63 E Southern in Tempe for a light workout, shower and then heavy arms and torso workouts and then to the Tempe Improv on E University Dr to tape my appearance for a TV audition and then home. During my set I forgot Staying Alive, one of my best lines, because I added Favorite??, which did not get a good laugh. In the process I learned to not add, at the last minute, something that is not tested. Unfortunately, I don't think the video will be up to my standards.

Fri Jan 17 = Worked on booking shows for my tours

Sat Jan 18 = I hated to do it, but decided to charge $20 instead of $10 for my XXXL and larger T-shirts. They cost about twice as much and people were buying giant sizes, for no reason but to have a giant shirt.
- This afternoon I went over to Todd Barlo's Green Motors for help in modifying my van to a motorhome. We spent about a half hour analyzing everything. Then we got down and dirty. We ripped out the carpeting for the third row seat storage area that resulted in an excellent kite storage compartment. The rest of the time he installed the table socket and worked on mostly electrical while I chased parts and finished the covers for the new kite storage compartment.
- This evening it took me about a half hour to simply print two price labels on my Dymo 280 because it was not responding. I tried different USB cables, power configurations, including printing from the 280's own keyboard. Finally the thing printed using all the original stuff. The labelmaker has a bad habit of randomly ejecting some blank tape. Altogether, tonight it wasted about a foot of the pricey label tape.

Sun Jan 19 = I wore several hats today.
- With my Booker's Hat on I got the show details work out for my appearance at an American Legion in Anchorage. By then it was to late to put on my Comedian's Hat and drive down to Scottsdale for the open mic at Pho Cao, so I did some other things that needed to be done.
- With my Remodeling Hat on I configured the kitchen cabinet (driver) side of my van. Big project involving some sawing, moving stuff around etc.
- My Merchant Hat was in good form when I processed my newly received T-Shirt order and got the shirts into the warehouse (a stack on the back of my couch).
- With my Video Producer Hat on, I produced two videos. One from last Thursday and one from Michigan last July.
- Wearing my Trainer's Hat was a good idea at Anytime Fitness for my arms workout.
- My Webmaster Hat was next. I tackled the big project of adding back my appearance video on Chanel 3 TV for kiteboarding. Chanel 3 took the video off the Internet after about eight years so it was also gone from my website. I ran across a copy of it on one of my old backup drives, so, voila. It will be online in a few days.
- A couple days ago I lost or misplaced the Eastbound calendar chart for my road tour. Not good. Fortunately I had scanned it as a backup with my IriScan a few days ago.
Learning from that experience, I put on my Security Hat and scanned seven additional key tour documents, and uploaded them so they are now on my clipboard, my computer, in the scanner and in the cloud.

Mon Jan 20 = I thought of some new twists for some of my comedy routines today. This evening at CB Live my name was drawn so I did something new to the venue, three minutes of my ?78 Silly3 Posture Voice T-StillAlive routines. Casey gave me some good pointers.

Tue Jan 21 = Today I got real serious about losing the fat around my waist and decided to binge on less, eating the same, healthy stuff, but reducing from 80% to 70% of my pre-retirement quantities.
- Tonight was comedy at Tempe Tavern. My, How Old opening got 100% participation from the audience, so there was no opportunity to use my new silent-audience contingency response.

Wed Jan 22 = Today I booked two shows in W Memphis AR on my initial phone call to the posts. That's the way I like to do it.
- On the way to tonight's comedy I didn't have time to stop by the gym or Winco, but I did stop by Ace Hardware for some metric bolts and some 4-c wire for the meter for monitoring my
our van's Lithium/Iron/Manganese/Phosphate/Oxygen house battery
- I misread the show time so got to Toso's as the show was just starting... and in time to sign up as number 19. After checking with the host I went to LA Fitness for a poo, shower and heavy legs workout, to Winco for some nuts and then back to Toso's just in time for my set to an audience of 12, which is pretty decent that late.

Thu Jan 23 = Good news. This afternoon I went to Valley Sleep Center for the result of my home sleep study two Sundays ago. The study confirmed that on my road tours, if I sleep in my van with my head back and turned to one side (not the most comfortable position), I do not need to use a CPAP machine.

Fri Jan 24 = It occurred to me that I could have magnetic signs on my van announcing that I was on a Veterans Appreciation National Road Tour. What do you think of the result?:
Car Sign
- I bought 20' of 4C thermostat wire to replace the two huge, stiff 2C cables that Todd used to go from my
our van's Lithium/Iron/Manganese/Phosphate/Oxygen house battery
to a little monitoring panel on my dash. I spent some time measuring resistance testing the thermostat wire to confirm that it will do the job. I also found that I need to use a different shunt for measuring the amperage.

Sat Jan 25 = I got my checking account resolved today, about 10 days later than ideal. Also got caught up on some of my blog today.
- This evening's BIG project was redoing the
our van's Lithium/Iron/Manganese/Phosphate/Oxygen house battery
monitor wiring for my van. Specifically installing thermostat wire UNDER the carpeting from the back to the front of the van. It wasn't easy since I had to take up all the carpeting in the back and remove the anchor bolts from the rear of the driver's seat. I used the new set of wire fishing rods that I bought at Harbor Freight to get over a pesky transverse floor rail.

Sun Jan 26 = Today was poster template revision day, to reformat my templates for 2'x3' portrait format. Here's an old and a new example:
poster poster
Mon Jan 27 = Poster templates, again - this time making my posters suitable for 2x3 feet and more in line with national comedians, which I guess I am, considering I will have done comedy in all 50 states by the end of August. The result:
poster poster
- Considering my old ones are obviously frayed and getting ragged, on the way to comedy tonight I shopped four stores for new cargo pants. I bought the best pair I found, Wrangler Relaxed Fit Stretch, at the Northsight Walmart in Scottsdale. It was their last pair in my size and a third the cost of a not-so-good pair at Kohl's. My size: same as high school, only these were stretch and relaxed fit.

Tue Jan 28 = I pried off the rear AC vents of my van and think I have figured how to rout a hidden power cord for my little 2" ceiling fan.
- Comedy tonight was at El Charro Hipster at an open mic hosted by my friend Noah Flores. Last time I was there was a year ago.

Wed Jan 29 = Tonight's comedy was fun at Toso's. They liked my Airline Bathroom set and my comment about the previous comedians. My response to Pauli's toilet plunger bit brought the house down. The house was an audience of 8 - mostly comedians.
- I am having to be a little more careful when I get up to pee at night. I tend to experience a brief stabbing pain in my lower right back.

Thu Jan 30 = Tonight I checked my fifth Walmart store for another pair of Wrangler Relaxed Fit Stretch Cargo Pants and found none in 30-30. Tonight, after Grand Avenue Pizza comedy and a heavy arms workout at LA Fitness, I ordered two pair online from Walmart to be delivered, free, on Monday.

Fri Jan 31 = Boy, I got a lot done today. I got the video of my Thousand: Roast Arizona Lou Special multi-cammed with the sound I auto ducked yesterday. Big harry job.
- This afternoon and evening was another big project, only with my van. I got the van's shunt installed with the mounting system I made (white block in picture).
- Then, with the aid of kite string, a paper clip, some magnets and some panel pry tools, I got the 4-conductor (thermostat) wire to go behind panels all the way to a little hole I drilled in the dash.
- Tonight I got the audio switched at the last of my Thousand: Roast Arizona Lou Special video from the combined audio to my body mic, so that you can hear people's comments to me, walking around after the end of the show. Really inspiring and encouraging.
- I answered a show confirmation email from a Texas VFW post with: "...I have done shows with no stage at all, on sidewalks, the Boardwalk in Atlantic City, in parks, on airplanes and in the sand on beaches."

Sat Feb 1 = The only thing left to do to the two-hour video of my Thousand: Roast Arizona Lou Special is to remove 22 seconds of the show at the 1:26:53 point where the the audio guy unwittingly played copyrighted music, Life In The Fast Lane by The Eagles. With the song segment, YouTube will not allow my video to be seen.
- That accomplished, I'll do my shopping list and grocery shopping while the 1.5-hour is processing and uploading to YouTube. It will be good to get all the source and related files off of my computer because they take up 117gb, which is 12% of my
Dell XPS-13 computer with 13.3" touch screen, 60WHr Integrated Battery, Windows 10, Intel 7th Generation Core i7 CPU, 16gb memory and 1TB SSD
hard drive space. The resulting 2-hour video file is only 10gb, still a significant 1%.
    The Roast video turned out to be a nine-week project. Mostly for my own reference, without the wrong turns, here is the ideal sequence:
  1. Combine separate files created by each camera that split the show into separate files (syncing with body mic audio if necessary)
  2. Produce each result to get the full show as one large file from each camera
  3. Pick the best source for the audience (in this case it was the audio from Camera #1)
  4. Auto duck the audience audio, using the PA audio (comedians' track) as the control track (Sensitivity = 50%; Ducking = 80%; Fade out and Fade in both set at .1 second
  5. Increase the volume of the comedians' track with the CyberLink-15 key frames
  6. Produce the video with the combined audio of the comedians' mic and the ducked audience mic to get the Final Camera #1 file
  7. MultiCam: Load all four camera fines and sync all by audio
  8. Set the audio as from the Final Camera Camera #1's audio
  9. Start Final Camera #1 video playing in a different window by Windows Media Player in order to anticipate camera shake during the MultiCam work
  10. MultiCam: Record the show selecting the appropriate cameras. Then click OK to return to the editing screen
  11. Shorten my body mic recording in the ICD to the last of the show through the post-show portion
  12. Add that audio track to CyberLink's time line and sync by audio
  13. For the post-show body mic audio, switch from the Final Camera #1's audio to the ICD body mic audio by creating four CyberLink key frames in both sound tracks and switching to minus infinity db as appropriate
  14. Produce this video. This is the finished video... except it has 20 seconds of copyrighted music at 1:27 between comedians Don Dorio and Dustin Cade, which prevents the video from being seen on YouTube
  15. Remove the offending 20 seconds (it was mostly just a blank stage anyway)
  16. Produce this video and upload it to Youtube
Here's the result:
- I'll save all the source files for the show on an external hard drive so, if I have time and inclination I can re-do it with a slightly immproved sound and no camera shake.

Sun Feb 2 = This morning I got my revised Thousand: Roast Arizona Lou Special video active on YouTube. Tomorrow I'll switch to the new video on my Comedy Home Page. It's still not perfect, so I've taken notes to shorten the audio ducking response times and eliminate some of the camera shake, which was the result of my camera guy being over zealous in tweaking Camera #1.
- Late Lunch Comedy at Pho Cao, Vietnamese restaurant in Scottsdale was sparse due to the Super Bowl LIV. There was only an audience of 14 which included about 8 comedians. They liked my Middle Child/Stan routine; the first time I did it there.
- Major progress with my van wiring this evening... for my ceiling fan. With the help of a 24" zip tie, threading rods, a magnet, a paper clip and a little gumption and ingenuity, I strung kite line from the drivers sliding door jam to the rear passenger-side ceiling duct through which I drilled a 1/2" hole for the wire. Tomorrow I'll buy some bell wire and pull it through, with an additional, temporary kite line in case things don't go as expected.
- Oh, yes, the Chiefs defeated the 49ers 31-20 in the Super Bowl. You can tell I'm really a fan. I didn't even know who was playing until I checked the score before bedtime.

Mon Feb 3 = Comedy this evening was at Devil's Advocate with my Cheap routine

Tue Feb 4 = This morning I binged on a bunch of the best Super Bowl LIV commercials.
- This afternoon I had my semiannual eye check. Dr Pyritz found only my needing a slightly stronger, by one diopter, prescription for distance vision.
- This evening's comedy was at the Crescent Ballroom - my second time there. My Middle Child routine went over pretty well. It is always a good room run by Matt Micheletti.

Wed Feb 5 = Today I redid my Road Tour poster with a QR Code linking to the latest update online. I also redid my Announcement slips with the new poster on the back.
- I made a small emergency gym kit with a wash cloth, small towel, antiperspirant, comb, brush and hair glue. I'll carry it in the van in case I end up at a gym without my gym bag.
- Thank goodness this does not happen often: This afternoon I had a slight anal accident, so cleaned up my sweat pants, put them in the laundry and pulled out an old pair that has been hanging in my closet for about 54 years. Of course the elastic was toast, so I threaded in new. Sweats have not changed, you know.
- In the van department, I hooked up the battery combiner temporarily and tested it. Works like a dream.
- This evening was Toso's for my Cheap routine. Went well.

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Thu Feb 6 = Today I added glass coverage to my van's AMICA Mutual insurance. Speaking of my van, I used my Mileage spreadsheet to determine that I spent $14,825 on gasoline for my old van, the last five years since starting comedy. That's an average of $3,177 per year. For the last 18 years that I kept track of my gas costs with the old van, I spent $45,879, which averaged $2,549 per year. Before starting comedy I didn't do a whole lot of local Phoenix driving, but did go on annual kiteboarding trips - mostly to
Hatteras Island and the Outer Banks off the coast of North Carolina
- This evening I drove down to Chandler and did my new Cheap routine.

Fri Feb 7 = At noon I took my new Sedona Kia to the dealer for its first oil change and the installation of an after-market remote start kit, which cost about $750. Expensive, but I need to be able to start the van from the back when it's hot and my
our van's Lithium/Iron/Manganese/Phosphate/Oxygen house battery
needs to be charged. They gave me a loaner car. I'll only put about 14 miles on it, going to the gym.
- Selling some of my Wittmann land has become a moving target. The buyer keeps changing what he wants. Oh, well, that happens when you deal with humans.

Sat Feb 8 = This afternoon I picked up my van from Earnhardt Kia, a mile south of my house. They did not charge me for the oil change and tire rotation. They even washed my van for me! That builds loyalty. Thanks, guys. This evening I experimented some with the van's new Remote Start feature and read the instructions.
- This evening it took me 12 minutes to enter the Kroger feedback/Sweepstakes and give them feedback about not offering Top Tier Gasoline.
- After that I pulled the wire through my van's ceiling for the little ceiling fan and moved the 100A ANL fuse up a couple of inches to give space below it for the automatic battery isolator relay which I am installing.
- Even later I finished the annual Consumer Reports Survey, emphasizing electronics.

Sun Feb 9 =

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