For more than a week now, you web surfers have been clicking on Wolfden V with disappointment. The festive Disneyland grand entrance mocked you. Drew must be away gallivanting through Mickey Mouse land while I sit dejectedly awaiting his return. And for sure it was grand time. Proof!
Even the random woman with arms folded on the right side of the photo was enjoying herself (presumably).
While the trip was a delightful respite from the mundane, I cannot say that it was all fun and games. As may have been mentioned on occasion, I was not taking this Bob Barker retirement well and while in California, the final original program of The Price Is Right aired on CBS. Now, it had always been an unrealized dream of mine to win fame and fortune on the program. I honed my skills watching an unreasonable amount of retail games. In fact, I think I scared my mother when I knew what game the contestant was going to play simply based on what part of the stage Bob escorted the contestant towards.
My first trip out to Los Angeles to visit my parents came last fall. The show was on hiatus while I was there with taping resuming two hours after my flight departed LAX. A devastating swing and a miss as I would get no closer to my coveted glory.
This, my second trip, came too late as the final tapings has already taken place. My opportunity to visit with Bob Barker had come and gone. Or so I thought.
On a day that was not spent lining Walt Disney's pockets, the clan took a trip to Hollywood to do touristy things like eat at the Disney Soda Fountain, gawk at the Walk of Fame, and take pictures of hand prints in the cement. At the conclusion of which, we opted for a tour through Hollywood and the surrounding Beverly Hills area. The tour promised dazzling views, insightful historical facts, and famous movie star homes.
The very first famous home we saw? Bob Barker's.
I didn't intend to seek out the man's house and in my defense none of the Wolf party had any foreknowledge of the houses that we would drive by. Regardless, I passed from "pathetic fan" to "scary stalker" quite quickly (and comfortably). Needless to say, the above photo is the retirement haven of the greatest game show host in history.
But, no our day did not end there. My evolution on the Bob Barker obsessed scale would frighteningly take another step forward.
The tour guide, an actor who apparently is the bailiff on Boston Legal and the best man in some wedding on Desperate Housewives among other credits, wrapped up the two hour adventure and turned back toward the Kodak Theater where the fun began. On the way back, we encountered tremendous traffic caused by a blocked off road. We would later find out that the closure was due to the red carpet roll out for the epic event of the Daytime Emmy
I would be lying if I said that I was any more than remotely aware that there was even such an awards show. Regardless, we found it all rather exciting that the red carpet was unrolled and television stars in their Hollywood best were parading before our very eyes. My mother was especially delighted at the various soap opera actors and actresses waving at the crowd, smiling and happy.
I knew pretty much no one of this crowd (vaguely recognized a few of the people on The Young and the Restless solely from that being the show that is on after The Price Is Right with the TV sometimes left on while I do other things). However, I did recognize some of the non-soap opera crowd. Oscar the Grouch and Elmo were among the first through. Dr. Phil, Ellen DeGeneres, Rachel Ray, Tyra Banks (no fewer than two people adjusted her hair and dress after every step), and even Jerry Springer. The latter actually returned a wave from my wife, which while very cool was still a little bizarre to have witnessed. Alex Trebek came in too, and I began to wonder if I might have my day yet. And yes, yes I did.
For the white haired blur you see in the above photo is the legend himself. Escorted by three of his Barker's Beauties, Bob Barker marched into the Kodak Theater before my very eyes. Later that evening he would collect his 19th (!) Emmy Award and several standing ovations. Thwarted from appearing on his show, I delighted in this appearance on the very day of the final Price Is Right airing. My life is now complete.
I could use one of those new car's they hand out on the show, but otherwise complete.
Photos from Mama and Papa Wolfman