Pleased to Be Present


Richard Jordon and Billy Barnes celebrating their wedding.

I want to talk about who I’ve been missing, and what I would have missed. David, my sweet spouse, has been wintering in England solo (you will read about some of the lovely places and super restaurants he was enchanted by in an upcoming Lawrence and Lawrence column in The Tolucan Times). And why didn’t I join him? Because it was freezing! It’s puzzling to many of our pals why he braves the chill, but David has a passion for the bluster and the raging ocean at Milford on Sea. He did mention it was so cold that his face hurt. Case closed. I love that he returned home to 80-degree weather with a happy face.
My face is happy that I was here for some wonderful events, most especially an intimate wedding of two of my dearest friends, Billy Barnes and Richard Jordon who have been partners for over 27 years…

Billy Barnes and Richard Jordon
In a serene room of the home of Marilynn Lovell Matz, a small gathering celebrated the wedding of Billy Barnes (composer and lyricist of the famed B.B. Revue) and Richard Jordon (Disney publicist and author of the “Polly Pepper” mystery series). Marilynn herself performed the ceremony (another manifestation of her many glorious and generous talents). Witnessed by Steven Smith, the best man, and myself, Matron of Honor and photographer, it was as sweet an experience as one could hope for. The kindness and devotion that Billy and Richard have shared over the years were honored by the words offered by Minister Marilynn. At the start, we all held hands and took some deep breaths in unison, clearing our minds of all things and focusing our thoughts and hearts on the delighted couple. There could not have been a more charmed moment. Candles were lit, rings exchanged, and champagne and sparking cider poured. Afterwards, we enjoyed happy thoughts, warm memories, and a dandy dinner delivered by Studio City’s Spark. It’s sad this could not be a “legal” wedding. This embarrassing inequity needs to be set right.
So, I am pleased that I was present to attend this wedding and a host of other special occasions during January and half of February. It was thrilling to attend the Academy of Television Arts & Science’s Hall of Fame 2010. The honorees were Candice Bergen, Charles Lisanby, Don Pardo, Gene Roddenberry, Dick and Tom Smothers, and Bob Stewart. I sat with the elegant and esteemed Tom Sarnoff, and we spoke of his years of work for the Academy’s Foundation. The event was filled with great stars on and behind the scenes. Announcer Don Pardo fills both scenes as we’ve had several good peeks at this amazing announcer. At age 91, Don still is the voice of “Saturday Night Live.” Hostess of the Academy’s evening, the calmly funny Amy Poehler got to introduce Lorne Michaels who, in turn, introduced Don Pardo (think “Cesar’s Hour,” “The Price is Right,” and “Jeopardy!” 66 years of announcing for NBC.). Rob Reiner thanked the Smothers brothers for his career as a writer. Those boys haven’t lost their loopy luster, yo-yos and all. Candace Bergen was lovingly introduced by the great Diane English. Seth MacFarlane (a literate rascal and handsome devil) gave a great tribute to Gene Roddeberry, and Gene’s son accepted the award. The award-winning art director and production designer, Charles Lisanby, has added dazzle and distinction to television for decades. And I may be partial, as he is a good friend to animals. Last but not least is the infamous Bob Stewart. A true game show impresario, Bob created a zillion shows, among them “The Price is Right,” “To Tell the Truth,” “Jackpot!” and “The $10,000 Pyramid.” JoAnne Worley, guest on many of Bob Stewart’s shows, was his guest at the Hall of Fame. And Betty White gave him a glowing introduction; after all, he introduced her to Allen Ludden…
And I was here for my stepson Adam’s 50th birthday party. It was at downtown’s Lucky Strike Bowling. Endless bar food and four lanes draped for a private event. Friends, old and young, three guide dogs with their people whom, with a little direction, were bowling and having a superb and silly time. I’d carry on more, but I’ve run out of words… We’ll talk!

‘Love and constitutional liberty to all who deserve it… which is all.’

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