My column last month about seven-layer cake really struck a nerve, or a taste bud if you will, with Jewish News readers. I’m really not surprised. I had a feeling that might happen because you can never underestimate the power of 7LC.
In the last month, I’ve received emails from former Detroiters who reminisced about their love affair with the layers. Plus, it seems like a day hasn’t gone by that someone hasn’t come up to me to comment on my cake column. Fake news? Nope, that’s cake news!
The Jewish News’ Facebook page also lit up with a tremendous reaction from readers/eaters who shared their personal seven-layer sentiments. The response prompted the JN to reach back to me and ask if I wouldn’t mind visiting some of our favorite local bakeries to gauge the reaction on the ground. Talk about making me an offer I couldn’t refuse. Of course, I would … and did … with the help of JN Digital/Social Media Editor Hannah Levine.
Meanwhile, the last couple of weeks haven’t just been consumed by my consumption of cake. I’ve also been busy making my long-awaited comeback to national television prominence. On June 21, I had a speaking part on Season 2/Episode 2 of Comedy Central’s Detroiters.
Detroiters is the brainchild of Detroit-born-and-raised comedians Sam Richardson and Tim Robinson, who portray owners of a small Motown ad agency. Both actors come to the show with impressive resumes. Richardson has had a recurring role on HBO’s Veep, starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus, and Robinson is a former cast member on Saturday Night Live. The show also includes a dynamic duo of producers: Lorne Michaels and Jason Sudeikis.
Detroiters is filmed entirely in the Metro Detroit area and favorably highlights many of our most popular sites in the city, most of which are on screen a lot longer than me.
I was cast in the role of — and these are in the words of the writers — a “shlubby nerd.” I can hear JN readers collectively thinking “typecasting.” I portrayed an actor auditioning for a TV commercial. Officially, I was on screen for 4.92 seconds … just long enough for one of my good friends not to see me. This friend actually left me a voicemail that said, “I watched the entire show and didn’t see you.” I had warned him not to blink. However, allow me to remind you that quality, not quantity, is the stuff of great performances.
My appearance in Detroiters marked my return to the small screen after an eight-year hiatus. I last appeared as a polka band leader on ABC’s Detroit 187, my national television debut in 2010. Why the eight-year gap between acting gigs? Well, let’s just say that there comes a point in a successful actor’s career that one becomes more selective about what roles to accept.
But like a fine wine, I believe my acting will get even better with age. The good news is I’ve got plenty of time. When you combine my 15.37-second appearance on Detroit 187 with my recent 4.92-second role on Detroiters, I feel blessed that I have roughly 14 minutes and 40 seconds left in my 15 minutes of fame. And wherever that leads me, I’ll never change. I’ll always be approachable. Hurray for Hollywood — and humility.