62 Comments

Just. WOW. Harold is your next book: A has-been-ish prop comic trying to stage a come back is found dead in his dressing room, strangled by a pair of oversized underpants. Harold is a gumshoe from way back, old school all the way. He's taken "mommy's" inheritance and left all that sordid business behind. But he gets this call. Sure, he knew the kid when he was coming up in the scene; you might even say Harold had a small hand in his success, but still, is that enough to pry him out of retirement? He's got it pretty cushy now, including a weekly poker game with Vince and some of his wrestling buddies. He pours himself a scotch and stares at the snow-capped mountains in the distance. It's going to be a long night..... ;) (PS: CLASSIC Night Court 4LYFE)

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So good! You picked the right Lyft driver. His stories seem way too random and filled with specifics to be made up. I recently drove by WWE headquarters and its giant sparkling wrestling belt in Stamford Connecticut . I imagine most people (outside of Stamford) have no clue that’s where the HQ is located.

While I’m no Harold, I did have the balls to ask Vince McMahon for his autograph in 1988.

For question 5, I’m going with Jarmusch, as long as I’m able to keep listening to Angela aka the Taxi theme song.

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I started calling my parents mom and dad when I was about 7 or 8. Didn’t want to be a pansy I guess.

Anybody can pick up the phone and call anyone. The other person has to have the balls to answer, right? Think about it: how many times have you said “I really don’t want to answer that…” or “This can’t be good.”

Taxi. Think about how many great characters were in Taxi. Think about the synergy. I adore DeNero but I just have to go with funny. Hopkins in Silence of the Lambs was funny in a weirdo kind of way.

I’d like to have a beer with Harold!

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Dec 6, 2023Liked by Michael Estrin

New subscriber here! I just bought your E-books, can't wait to read them! You got me with your Mom living in Vegas. My husband and I live here too, and now I feel like a supportive auntie. We have such great rideshare drivers here and listening to their colorful stories is one of my very favorite things!

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Also, I don’t have time to read this entire blog right now but I did scroll down to see Mortimer. Very cute. 🐾🐾

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Thanks for the mention, Michael, I forgot you did that for new paids. I would’ve given you a note except that I was literally in a plane waiting to take off for Argentina and saw that you were having a sale. It was the last thing I did before putting my phone on airplane mode. Now I’m at an airport in Chile headed to Patagonia seeing this. Love your stuff, you make me smile and inspire me to keep writing.

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Great story. What a character! When I think of comedian Scott Thompson, I think of Kids in the Hall, not 1-800 collect commercials.

I like the new Night Court OK, but the cast doesn’t click as well together and the reboot could be far zanier. The one element I completely dislike about the reboot is the way they redid the theme song. The original theme has much more energy and has a gritty feeling to it, whereas the new version feels flat.

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Dec 4, 2023Liked by Michael Estrin

If Harold was a true Southerner it would be Mama. Florida is an anomaly - the only state in the Union which gets more Yankee the farther south you go.

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Dec 4, 2023Liked by Michael Estrin

never a fan of carrot top, but i used to despise him. now i'm just meh. to each his own. dude had a plastic baby doll nailed to a piece of wood. BABY ON BOARD, geddit? so, yeah, i try to let it slide now. it's better for my heart and my complexion. and i would call vince, yes. i'd call him VINCE, i'd call him ASSHAT, i'd call him late for dinner. that schmuck.

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You found a promoter in the wild! You now have one indictment, but an even more enduring fan in me.

1. Harold is clearly an advanced storyteller. He's trying to place you in his POV. In a completely alien, non-functional way, but trying. Masterfully.

2. He's a great problem.

3. The balls? Sure. It's just not going to go well for me.

4. This is a great question, because we make a lot of efforts to bottle and resell kitsch value. It doesn't quite work like that. Kitsch value is intangible, like the fear you feel down the street from a rally.

5. I'll take Taxi Driver. I'm a sucker for a focused spiral into madness. I just tend to keep my own comic.

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Harold! I think he an only child that's why he still uses the "mommy" word. Older siblings would never put up with that. Or, mommy demanded it, threatened to cut him off.

"Americas wang." Hilarious. Must tell my mom that one. She is a very happy, elderly Floridian. The gaters freak me out. My mom once accidentally ran over one. She thought it was a speed bump. Hehehe.

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Dec 3, 2023Liked by Michael Estrin

Dang Michael, thank you for this entertaining story. My adult friend has a British mother whom she still calls "Mommy." Her mom insists on this. Maybe it's a Brit thing.

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If I was looking for a ride in Vegas, I think I’d prefer the driver to be Marsha Warfield - I don’t think Carrot Top or Vince McMahon could effectively navigate their way to the destination. Oh, I’m sorry, was that not the question posed? My bad. . .

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Taxi. Carol Kane as Simka. Mic drop.

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I loved this story. Loved Harold. Loved that his passenger was YOU - a great storyteller. I bought your e-books about a month ago but haven’t gotten to them yet. I’m hoping this was a delicious preview of what’s to come?

I loved the OG Night Court. It pushed comedic boundaries that just can’t be pushed today in sitcom format unless it’s a streaming series. I really like Melissa Rauch from her Big Bang Theory days, and since she roped Laroquette back in, I decided to give it a chance. But two episodes in and I just couldn’t anymore. Decidedly unfunny. (If anyone made it further and thinks I should revisit, I’m all ears).

My favorite taxi-like scene is actually from the seemingly little-known but insanely funny movie Office Christmas Party. The comedian Fortune Feimster is an Uber driver who has to take uptight CEO Jennifer Aniston somewhere. Feimster is like, “you should drive an Uber - you get to be the CEO of your own car!” And Aniston replies, “I AM a CEO.” 😂. (also, don’t miss the outtakes at the end of the film where you catch Feimster riffing in that same scene - it’s gold).

Mortimer for President!! (also, good tactic putting him at the end but previewing the move early in the post 😉). My posts always end with a cat pic section I call Cat Dump 🐈‍⬛ 💩.

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“Suddenly, I had a twang in my voice. That worried me, so I moved the conversation away from Florida.”

I find myself doing this when I go back home (so Southern California). I hate it. But put me on a beach, next to a boarder, and all of a sudden I’m filling pauses and getting pitted.

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