How are you tonight, my darling? You looked well on the show. Bouncy, peppy, happy. Dare I say “giddy” as well? By the end of the evening, you had slowed down a bit and seemed tired. Are you getting enough rest these days? Are you staying out too late?
Monologue: You little motorcyclin’ hottie! You have an Indian Scout? You didn’t ride it yesterday because it was Columbus Day, and it would seem insensitive to be riding an Indian… In honor of Dennis Hopper’s visit to The Late Late Show tonight, you rode today.
Your dad got you interested in motorcycles when you were a kid. While he couldn’t afford a leather jacket, he’d wear his post office uniform inside out so it would look shiny and cool. He couldn’t afford a silk scarf either, so he resorted to wearing tea towels. Whatever it takes, whatever it takes.
You had a motorcycle accident in 1984 in New York. You were drunk at the time. However, you managed to escape arrest because of your ginormous British license. It scared the cop. Thankfully, my dear, you learned your lesson and quit drinking — eight years later.
While you were making the movie I’ll Be There, you crashed another bike. Craig, you said you knew you were an actor because you kept thinking “not the face! Not the face!” as you were going down. You broke your collarbone and cracked three ribs. Having been there and done that myself, I can fully sympathize. No coughing, sneezing, or laughing with cracked ribs.
My accident wasn’t nearly as sexy as yours, though. You had the big chrome washing machine to explain your broken ribs. Me? I had a long-winded neighbor (telling some odd story), two ill-behaved children (not mine), a dog, and a kitten involved in the cracking of mine. Hardly the type of thing legends are made of, except at the urgent care center. Where they laughed. Not with me, at me. Had the story involved a rabbi, a priest, a goat, and a tutu, well, I’d be singing a different tune.
The power of a bike is hard to deny. They do have a certain vibe. Even the smallest motorcycle has the ability to produce some interesting sensations. Oh, yes they do! I once dated a man who had a Harley. We’d go out on rides all the time. I think he figured that he increased his chances of getting lucky if he took me out on the bike. Not that I was denying him the rest of the time, but there was a definite advantage to going out for a jaunt on the hog first. Gotta love those enormous love machines, eh?
Backtracking to the father thing. My dad had an Indian once upon a time. He restored the bike, just like he did all the old cars he used to buy. I have photos of him with the Indian, which is now owned by my uncle. We’re a thrifty folk; we throw nothing out. There’s a certain sort of mythic quality that a father on a motocycle carries. All the odd injuries are attributed to the bike, whether or not that’s how they occurred. Dads are just meant to be rough and tough and able to survive anything, aren’t they?
Email: Susan wanted to know what she should wear for Halloween. Her boyfriend said she should be a sexy carrot. Excellent advice to her: get a new boyfriend. Definitely. “What the hell is a sexy carrot?” Indeed. I guess I need to come up with a boyfriend question to get my email read on air.
First guest: Dennis Hopper. He’s currently starring in E-Ring. For some reason I spaced out on the fact that Hopper was in True Grit. I loved that movie! Hell, I love most John Wayne movies. Unusual for a woman, I know. It’s one of the things that makes me so adorably quirky. Don’t anyone forget that. Ever.
Hopper’s also into photography, with abstract reality as his specialty. He’s been doing it since the 50s. The Ace Gallery in Beverly Hills will host his photographs around Academy Award time. That’s an exhibit I’d like to see!
Now, Dennis doesn’t come across as a particularly easy interview, but my friend says he’s a nice man. She worked with him on The Last Ride. Hey, I take my “Six Degrees” very seriously. Anyhow, even though he seemed hesitant at first, he did warm up to your gentle questions, you frisky little pony. It’s that warm Scottish charm of yours that does it every time.
Some trivia on Dennis Hopper: He was hanging out with James Dean “all the time” during the last year of Dean’s life. He’s a painter. Once wandered around the jungle in Mexico as a result of drinking and drugs. Has narrated over a dozen animated kids’ tales. Hopper was fantastic in River’s Edge. His “girlfriend” was a total doll.
Second guest: Emmy-nominated actress Cheryl Hines from Curb Your Enthusiasm. After a Chip and Dale moment between the two of you, she told of her folks’ love of The Late Late Show.
Hines has a background in improv from working with the Groundlings. She was cast on Curb Your Enthusiasm as David’s wife after producers saw her perform with the group. On a show that requires a lot of improvisation, she’s obviously in her element. Hines met her husband while working with the Groundlings. His name is Paul Young, but not the British singer from the 80s. Which is likely a relief to that Mr. Young’s wife. I’m not linking to him because he’s mine, ladies (and you, too, Craig). No matter that he’s married. I claimed him 20 years ago.
So, back to Cheryl Hines. She and her husband have an 18-month old daughter. That’s a great age for kids. They’re curious, mysterious, funny, and full of danger. Yes, danger. You have to watch them so carefully. They’ll dart in front of trains, run down the street as they’re pulling off their diapers, scream on airplanes, and steal your heart when you’re not paying attention. Tricky little things, they are.
Final guest: Sarge, the comedian. It’s really weird that this man doesn’t have a website. If he does, I can’t find it. I’ve checked. Your intrepid girl reporter (Brenda Starr) searched to the ends of the earth to find one. Nope. Nothing. Nada. Nil. Zip, zilch, zero, zed, bupkis. It’s a shame, too, because he’s funny. Very funny. “I’m like a futon with a face!” “So you’re looking at me thinking how did Curious George and Bryant Gumble get in the same body?… I’m a black Jew, which means I shoplift, but only wholesale.” Good stuff.
Sarge just got back from entertaining the troops in Iraq. We like that, don’t we, Craig?
I guess it’s time for me to go off and dream of playing cowboy on your Indian with you. Hopefully, you’ll be wearing a kilt. Until tomorrow…
Your cheeky wee monkey and saucy little minx,
P.S. Fabio is overrated. Except when he was in Bubbleboy. That was pure casting genius.
Discover for yourself what all the buzz is about, check out The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on CBS, Monday-Friday, 12:30 PM, Pacific. If you can’t stay up that late and/or refuse to record the show, you can always catch up on the monologues and skits on the LLS website.
About the author: Joan’s fascination and adoration of Craig Ferguson is little more than silly fantasy, with a dash of lust, the likes of which are common amongst single 39 year-old women. She lives many miles safely south of Los Angeles and CBS Studios. Joan has spent many hours contemplating the existence of miniature marshmallows. She often wonders if they feel inferior to those of regular size.