May 1st, 2007 6:55 PM
When you have a last name like Mantooth which, incidentally, is my actual last name, this stuff pretty much writes itself.
Not only, in an entirely unrelated adventure, is the character of “Wes Mantooth” from the smash hit comedy “Anchor Man” named after me but I’m also the progeny of Randolph “Emergency 51” Mantooth.
For those of you younger than 30 or those who’ve never watched smash hit cable station “Nick at Night”, Randolph (or Randy) Mantooth portrayed super-hunk firefighter John Gage on the smash hit television drama “Emergency” which ran from 1972 to 1979. “Emergency” was produced by Jack Webb. He played “Joe Friday” on “Dragnet”, another smash hit television show. I only bring this up because, as most of you know, Jack Webb was the real deal and he never would have settled for less than top rate acting talent. Ergo, my father, Randolph Mantooth was top rate, no joke and, in his own way, a smash hit.
A smash hit, that is, except when it came to parenting.
While John Gage (my dad Randolph Mantooth’s character on the smash hit “Emergency”) was saving lives on television each week in each riveting episode of “Emergency”, Randolph Mantooth, a single dad, was ignoring his only begotten son…ME…Mantooth!
Oh sure. I had a bevy of hot nannies. They’d been classically trained in Europe and knew all sorts of rare facts….real Davinci Code ancient stuff…that you don’t get in public school. Jack Webb kicks down for hot talent and you better believe that. But a kid needs his Dad not some pretty boy actor who, even though he passed on his exquisite genes to me, is never there.
While my Dad was riding around on a fake fire truck on television, I wanted him to be riding around on the father/son emotional fire truck that raced around my heart. Thus, despite my own devastating good lucks and smash hit acting ability, I shunned the entertainment industry so that I can raise my own son better than my father raised me. At least that’s what I plan on doing as soon as I get a girlfriend and knock her up.
Why, daddy? Why?