Friday, November 26, 2010

Weight Loss Update

It's been two years since I gave you an update on my weight loss program. Let's give you some background. I weighed close to 250 lbs. in October 2006, roughly about the time I met Tracy. My first wife had been gone a year and the next year was an orgy of meals out and badly executed home meals. Blew up like a balloon.

I looked at myself in a mirror four years ago Thanksgiving and thought I looked pregnant. Which is no kind of shape for a 45-year-old male to be.

I embarked on a weight loss contest with Tracy the following January, and by April was down 16 pounds to 234.

The following December, 197.

A month later, six more pounds miraculously shed. 191.

Fast forward almost two years, with an increased exercise regimen including lots of walking and ballroom dancing (thank you, Fred Astaire). Thanksgiving morning, 2010, I step on the scale, and lo and behold - 178. I have never weighed that little in my adult life, perhaps since the last year of college.

Am I going to keep going? Yes. When I went on my first weight loss plan, I thought 175 was a reachable goal, and now I'm within five pounds of that. I am setting my sights even bigger and hopefully by this time next year, I'll see 160.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Covering Charlie

Charlie O'Donnell, who died on November 1, gave "Wheel of Fortune" 28 years of prize copy, everything from ceramic dalmatians to "ONE MILLLLLLLLION DOLLARS!"

Why, then, is Sony Pictures Television trying to erase his final performances on the show?

Game show fan friends have been watching "Wheel" quite closely lately. Some have even been to tapings and have noticed O'Donnell's presence, but the shows that have aired since O'Donnell's passing have had a different voice reading the copy, that of incumbent "Jeopardy!" announcer Johnny Gilbert. The show has even gone so far as to have Pat Sajak overdub his throws to "Charlie" and replace them with "Johnny". (Check the closed captioning and see if it still says "Charlie"...)

My guess on the situation is that much of "Wheel" is narrated in post, but if Charlie was there, then we should still be able to hear him. "Wheel" producers could rationalize that it would be too confusing to viewers to still hear Charlie after his death was widely reported, much in the same way "What's My Line?" viewers of 40 years ago could still enjoy syndicated episodes with Bennett Cerf long after he left us.

The show is searching for a new announcer, and so far the front-runner is former "Price is Right" announcer Rich Fields, who has already taped several weeks of shows.