Monday, March 20, 2006

A Multi-culti Mick's Day


In which worlds collide amusingly on St. Patrick’s Day in Studio City




For St. Patrick’s Day I went to Maeve’s Re$iduals down the street on Ventura. For those not familiar with this neighborhood hole-in-the-wall, Maeve’s is a hangout for the Valley’s Hollywood hard workers – the key grips and best boys and boom operators and those hard working career actors who fill in the blanks between the big name stars and the starlets. Legend has it that if you bring in a residual check – that is, one of those little $1.98 checks that writers and actors and musicians sometimes get when their three-year-old work suddenly appears in some third-string cigarette or car ad in Thailand – you get a free drink. The legend, however, is not substantiated on Maeve’s website. I love Maeve’s Re$iduals, and Maeve herself is true Irish heart.

Upon entering the bar I found not the madding crowd one would find at, say, Timmy Nolan’s on Riverside or Tim Bergin’s in the mid-Wilshire, but a happy, mixed and relaxed little crowd of Irish and Irish-at-heart revelers. The new bartender, Brian, flinging liquor and suds at the devil’s pace, wore a leather kilt and sporran. He quickly talked me into going home and donning my own kilt, sporran and bonnet.

I went home quickly, changed, and hightailed it back to get another drink, just in time for the piper to start up. He played Danny Boy and few other well-wrought tunes. Then, a smallish fellow who had been sitting on the sofa, listening, went up and whispered in the piper’s ear. The piper nodded and the fellow went and opened a huge case and from it produced an enormous African drum, called, I found out later, a djembe. As the piper played the drummer drummed. A lot of Celtic music is rhythmically based, but I would never have expected the great pipes – which after all is classified by the British government as a weapon of war and not a musical instrument – and an African drum to work so well together. In fact, the two complimented one another brilliantly. (And no, I’m quite sure it was not the Bushmills a-talkin’, thank’ee.)

Turns out that the drummer – Ricardo Sarabia, a veteran actor, musician and Valleyite – didn’t know the piper, but just happened to have his drum with him at the time. After his duet with the piper, Sarabia serenaded the crowd with a solo performance of one of the funniest songs I’ve ever heard, “My Czechoslovakian Boyfriend,” by Darlene Treen, who Sarabia knew many years ago from a theater class. Banging the hell out of his African drum atop a coffee table, Sarabia belted out the words:

He's My Czechoslovakian boyfriend
He's My Czechoslovakian guy
He's My Czechoslovakian boyfriend
He ain't no Russian spy
And he dresses like a straight boy
And he talks like a creep
Everybody thinks he's suspect
But I just think he's neat

He doesn't know much English
And he doesn't often speak
We spend our nights in conversation
Half in Czech and half in Heat
Half in Czech and half in Greek
Half in Czech and half in Heat

He's My Czechoslovakian boyfriend
He's My Czechoslovakian guy
He's My Czechoslovakian boyfriend
He ain't no Russian spy
And he dresses like a straight boy
And he talks like a creep
Everybody thinks he's suspect
But I just think he's neat

I met him on the subway
You know he was so all alone
He looked so damned incredible
I had to take him, take him home
I had to take him, take him home
I had to take him, take him, take him home

He's My Czechoslovakian boyfriend
He's My Czechoslovakian guy
He's My Czechoslovakian boyfriend
He ain't no Russian spy

And he dresses like a straight boy
And he talks like a creep
Everybody thinks he's suspect
But I just think he's neat
And I just think he's sweet
And I just think he's peachy-keen
He makes my heart skip a beat

And he's not going back to Czechoslovak
No he's not going back to Czechoslovak
No he's not going back to Czechoslovak-ia-ia

He's My Czechoslovakian boyfriend -
Eeee-ya, Eeee-ya


Admittedly, it loses a little without the drum and Sarabia’s vibrant personality, but still I think you may get the picture. Sarabia proceeded to assure the audience that he was, in fact, straight. The lady he was with was certainly lovely.

Sarabia plays around L.A. and in the 818 and will appear in episode six of The Loop in April. You can also see him in this ad for Full Tilt Poker and in playing his drum in the Cypress Park Cinco de Mayo Parade. Look for him. He’s worth it. And spend some money at Maeve’s. She’s worth it, too.

3 Comments:

Blogger steve said...

What's great is his character on The Loop will be named "Rusty Trombone", according to the imdb.

12:41 PM  
Blogger M2 said...

Thanks for reading Steve-O!

Cheers!

M2

2:43 PM  
Blogger truthtoldhere@hotmail.com said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

10:09 PM  

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