When nationally known comedian and actor Bob Zany was in Marco two years ago, he and his wife Erin made a contribution to our nifty dog park, Canine Cove. Zany also poked fun at Capt. Brien’s restaurant, home of Zany’s venue, the Off the Hook Comedy Club.
Zany is returning there this Thursday for four nights of laughs and he’s still making fun of the combination of seafood atmosphere and comedy club sound and lights.
“Maybe the first night of my show we’ll call ‘Capt. Blowfish Mural Night.’ The audience and I will just sit there, stare at the blowfish mural and discuss what it all means.”
Zany pokes fun and just about everything, including himself. For example, people who attend his performances this week may hear some pointed comments about the poor housing market, a reality here as well as in Zany’s hometown, Los Angeles.
“I’m now hosting a show on the A&E network called “Flip Off This House. “Also I have an upside down mortgage in LA. At Halloween I handed out negative equity to the kids.”
Zany is busy with movie and other special projects while he’s not on stage live, including a documentary, “Close But No Cigar,” which sounds like a must see for anyone interested in candid and behind the scenes material on the world of stand up comedy.
He also has a key role in an upcoming movie, “23 Minutes to Sunrise,’ in which he stars with Eric Roberts and Nia Peeples.”
We asked Bob about life on the national comedy club circuit in these challenging economic times.
“Let’s just say I have stayed in my share of bad motels. In one, the Magic Fingers was a homeless guy under the bed.”
And we asked what sort of questions does he get from people he meets along the way.
“I’ve noticed that a lot of attorneys and doctors want to become comedians. One doctor treating me said, ‘Really, Bob, I really want to get into show biz.’
“So I said to him, ‘Well, how about first we get me well and then I’ll call my agent for you.’ ”
For more about Bob Zany, his web site is www.bobzany.com. For reservations to Zany’s live shows at the Off the Hook Comedy Club in Marco Walk, go to www.captbriens.com/off-the-hook-comedy-club. Call (239) 389-6900.
Volunteers backbone of the Vietnam Wall event
When wind and rain swept through Marco Island Wednesday night, doing some minor damage to the Vietnam Wall exhibit at Veterans Park, volunteers once again responded.
From the effort to get the traveling Wall That Heals here, to the local businesses, civic groups and individuals that joined in, islanders provided selfless help, never asking for recognition. One example is the generosity of time and material provided by the Lowe’s Company employees at the store on the East Trail at Collier Boulevard.
Lowe’s donated 36 palms, about 1600 feet of plastic chain and posts for the railings and 140 poinsettias. The result was a terrific, finished look to the site.
“I’ve never been able to participate in something of this importance in my life,” says Bob Gagnon, assistant store manager for Lowe’s at Collier Boulevard and the East Trail.
“It’s humbling. While I was talking with Lee Rubenstein when he approached me about this and we both got misty eyed. It’s like a once in a lifetime experience.
“You spend a life hearing about all the events in the world and something like this comes along and brings the focus close to where you live and you say ‘I want to be part of it.’ It’s really exciting. I get goose bumps just talking about it.”
Lowe’s human resources manager, Stephanie Earnhart, agrees.
“I’m rally excited. I just moved here a few weeks ago from Kansas where I was active in the community, but I’ve not done one of this magnitude. It’s pretty awesome.”
We also want to salute Marco’s Affordable Landscaping for its fast work after that storm Wednesday night. Owners Yvette and Al Benarroch jumped in with their people, re-staking fallen palms and restoring the beauty of the landscaping there.
We thank them and the hundreds of other volunteers who helped make the Vietnam Wall visit memorable.
Chris Curle is a former news anchor for CNN and for ABC-TV stations in Washington, D.C., Atlanta and Houston. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Don is a former ABC News correspondent and bureau chief and a former news anchor for CNN and ABC-TV, in Atlanta. His Farmer File column appears Fridays in the Naples Daily News. E-mail: email@example.com.