Saturday, November 15, 2008

Let's set the scene, May 28th 1998, a little more than six months after Chris Farley passed away, the great Phil Hartman is shot dead by his wife, Brynn Omdahl Hartman. I liked Hartman, not as much as Farley, Sandler and Spade when they were on SNL, but I liked him. I enjoyed Phil's movie, with Schwarzenegger, Jingle all the Way. Well as much as anyone else right, not enought to buy it on DVD, but enough to pick it up and look at it when I saw it was rereleased as a special 10th anniversary edition, well maybe when it hits the Walmart $5 bin I will rethink it and possibly buy it. But getting back on track, although I was sad to see Phil go, it didnt hit me like it did when Chris died and therefore instead of going through the motions of mourning, I sat there, like a selfish Chris Farley nerd, next to the TV, with VCR remote in hand, and my finger on the record button looking for something, anything with a possible Chris Farley connection. To my suprise, I scanned across it, on CNBC out of all channels, CNBC with Charles Grodin, The Charles Grodin Show it was called. I guess him and Phil had been great friends and he was paying tribute to his buddy. Well as the last segment rolled, Mr. Grodin said "and I leave you with this:"

I recorded the entire segment that was aired. It was actually a clip from a show that aired, I believe in 1992 from a show titled Talk Back Live. From what I remember that show had special guest hosts and on this particualr show it had Phil as the host and Farley as the guest. What an odd coincidence. This combo would be repeated on Phil's last show on SNL in another coincidence (see picture below). Anywho thanks to Charles Grodin I was able to see a segment from what I assume was an entire episode with Farley and Phil. Unfourtunatley, in September of 1998, I had this tape in the VCR with "Bobcat's Big Ass Show" scheduled to record, and that is what it did, recorded over this moment in history. Well thanks to a Phil Hartman fan collection at, the coveted video that I have been looking for since 1998 can finally be seen, in a very short form. I am still looking for the orginal complete show, but this is quite a happy suprise. Thanks again.

Picture from Phil's last SNL show:

Phil lets Chris, as Matt Foley, finds solace on his shoulder as he addresses the audience and those at home by saying "You know, I can't imagine a more dignified way to end my eight years on this program, (sings) Goodbye, Goodbye, Goodbye."

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Chris Farley Day July 18th 2008

My big summer excursion this year was to East Troy Wisconsin for a Jimmy Buffett concert. Having heard about the Wisconsin Historical Society having a new exhibit Chris Farley Remembered I decided to combine the trip and make it into two days . Being in Madison and a Chris Farley enthusiast I researched his old stomping grounds and made an agenda for the day. Along for the journey was my very lovely wife Ashley, my best friend since High School Joe and his wife Christin and rounding out the group was my brother Chris. So on a beautiful Madison morning we left our hotel and crammed into our 2002 Pontiac Sunfire.
Our first destination for the day was Our Lady of Queen Peace Church which ended up to be a bust, somehow we ended up at a church with the same name in the next town over. But after speaking with the church practitioners(?) they advised us on where to continue and off we went to our second (first official) stop Resurrection Catholic Cemetery (2705 Regent St., Madison, WI, 608-238-5561) where Chris lies in the mausoleum. Chris's father, Thomas J Farley, lies a little further down the hallway in the center on the left side.
After seeing the final resting places of two deceased Farley men, we walked outside and found a street sign that bares their name.
After contacting Melanie Conklin at The Capital Times, she advised me one of Chris's favorite hangouts was State Street Brats (603 State Street, Madison, WI, 608-255-5544) . Although Ash & I are vegetarians, the food did not disappoint. We had grilled cheese and waffle fries (and of course I had a couple of beers). The rest of the gang enjoyed the restaurant's namesake.
The girls took a 30 minute shopping spree on State Street while the boys found their way upstairs and played spot the difference at the bar. While we left Joe spotted Farley's picture in the entrance.
We then made our way over to the Wisconsin Historical Society (30 N. Carroll St., Madison, WI, 608-264-6555) for the exhibit, but not without a little scare. I parallel parked on a steep street which sat on the upper banks of Lake Mendota. On our way out I had to go down the hill towards the lake to pull a U-ey (I have never spelled that word out before) . On the way down I shrieked "Honey, NO BRAKES!!!" My brother, sitting shotgun, swung open his door and nearly barrel rolled out of the car before I actually braked and said "Just kidding." The funny/sad part was he planned on watching all of us plummet over the rocks and strait into the lake as he never seemed to reach for seat lever to let the three people in the back seat out to safety. That seemed to show how much he cared about our well being.

Making it to the museum, with a little less trust in my little brother, Joe dropped a twenty in the donation box and off we went to the display case, yes only a display case of Chris Farley stuff. I thought there would be more. But don't get me wrong, the case did not disappoint. As you can see from the pictures below it did in fact highlight Chris's life. A few of the items that I am highlighting is a jacket from the Matt Foley skit, his football jersey and Rugby coat, the Tommy Boy and Black Sheep jackets, the apparently heavily rewritten script for Edwards & Hunt, later to become Almost Heroes and my favorite piece was the letter from Dave Letterman, asking Chris to come on the Late Show, which as I understand it is very rare for David to do.
After having the desire to make Joe's twenty go farther we decided to explore the rest of the museum and then we were off to Chris's childhood home...which we never found, but I did locate it on a realtor's website. Below is the picture and here is her email if you are interested in buying
We filled up on expensive gas and drove to the Chris Farley Foundation (1213 N. Sherman Ave., #215, Madison, WI). For one reason or another I had in my head the foundation would be an office with a secretary, Tom Farley in the back making arrangements and posters of Chris Farley (like this one)ready for the taking. Unfortunately it was nothing like was a UPS Store, but my wife did find Tom's box.
And we also discovered Aberg avenue, you may remember that road name from Beverly Hills Ninja. “You try catching a cab in the middle of winter dressed like that on Aberg Avenue.”
Through my research I discovered the original location of where, back in 1986, Chris got his start in improv comedy. The Ark Improv (I don't think this link is current) was located at 220 North Bassett St., Madison, WI, is now home to Quick Clean laundromat. My brother and I found a spot where Chris more than likely performed.
The story goes Farley #59 didn't always get a lot of playing time, so in order to impress the girls after the game by appearing he had played the whole time, he would often run and dive in the mud on the sidelines. There was no mud on the field during our trip, but we did find Edgewood High School (2219 Monroe St, Madison, WI) and that infamous football field.
Before dinner we wound up finding Our Lady of Queen Peace Church (401 S. Owen Dr., Madison, WI) where the funeral service were held and attended by Chris Rock, Lorne Michaels, Dan Ackroyd, George Wendt and many others.
When Tom Arnold made the trip from the cornfields of Iowa to the cow pastures of Wisconsin, Chris decided to bring his guest to one of his favorite places in town, Skip Zach's Avenue Bar (1128 E. Washington Ave., Madison,WI 608-257-6877). Although the atmosphere was busy and the appearance was homely my brother and I found the plumbing to be perfect. On our way back to the table we came across proof that Tom and Chris were there (see below).
The Avenue Bar brought me a final joy to the day, deep fried cheese curds. I had never before enjoyed these bite sized treats and boy does Skip Zach know how to make 'em. A full fun Chris Farley day was had by all (well at least by me), and it was time to head back to the Extended Stay Deluxe. As I lifted the seat to let Ashley in the back of the car I couldn't help but wonder is this the end of my fascination...or just another beginning. Well, with plans in the work for Chris Farley day Chicago version next year, I can honestly say this fascination with Chris Farley is going to be around for quite a while.

To view the complete set of pictures from our journey please visit this link:

Soul to Squeeze

What is the connection between Chris and the Red Hot Chili Peppers? Well they performed on Saturday Night Live on February 22nd 1992 with host's Tom & Roseanne Arnold (at the time) and he was in their music video "Soul to Squeeze" (which was on the Coneheads Soundtrack). Let me know if you can find his cameo.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Lauren, Here is the clip that you are talking appears that SNL has taken the video down...but here is the next best thing, the transcript. (Look to the end for your quote)

92m: Alec Baldwin / Paul McCartney
The Chris Farley Show .....Chris Farley.....Paul McCartney

Chris Farley: Um, hi. Welcome to The Chris Farley Show. I'm.. Chris Farley.. and, my guest tonight is.. one of the.. greatest musicians.. uh,
rock musicians. I guess, songwriter, ever. [ Smacks himself ] GOD! That sounds stupid! God, I'm an idiot! I never know how to start these things!
Paul McCartney: You're doing great, Chris.Chris Farley: [ hopeful ] Really? No, I'm not. [ hyperventilating ] Anyway.. I guess.. I didn't have, have to say, who you were, because.. man, I mean.. everyone knows who you are. Mmm.. you're Paul McCartney.
Paul McCartney: Well, it's great to be here.
Chris Farley: [ uncomfortable ] You.. you.. you remember when you were with The
Paul McCartney: Yeah, sure.
Chris Farley: That was awesome!
Paul McCartney: Yeah, it was.Chris Farley: O-kay.. Oh! You.. you remember when you went to Japan.. and, uh, and at the airport they arrested you 'cause you had some pot, and.. it made all the papers, and everything..?
Paul McCartney: Well, to be honest, Chris, I'd kind of like to forget all of that.
Chris Farley: [ smacks himself harder ] IDIOT!! That's so stupid! What a dumb question!!
Paul McCartney: No, no, no, Chris. I get asked that all the time in interviews. Maria Shriver asked the same question last week.
Chris Farley: Really? [ pause ] Did you know that she's married to
Arnold Schwartzenegger?
Paul McCartney: Yeah. I've heard that.
Chris Farley: Did you see "Terminator"?
Paul McCartney: No, I missed that one.
Chris Farley: That was a pretty awesome flick. [ pause ] O-kay.. remember.. you remember when you were with The Beatles, and you were supposed to be dead, and, uh, there was all these clues, that, like, uh, you played some song backwards, and it'd say, like, "Paul Is Dead", and, uh, everyone thought that you were dead? That was, um, a hoax, right?
Paul McCartney: Yeah. I wasn't really dead.
Chris Farley: Right. I think we.. I think we got time for one more question. Uh.. remember when you were in The Beatles? And, um, you did that
album Abbey Road, and at the very end of the song, it would.. the song goes, "And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make"? You.. you remember that?
Paul McCartney: Yes.
Chris Farley: Uh.. is that true?
Paul McCartney: Yes, Chris. In my experience, it is. I find, the more you give, the more you get.
Chris Farley:[ecstatic, starts to point at Paul and mouth "AWESOME!"] Well, that's it for this week's show. Thank you, Paul McCartney, thank you, for being one of the greatest.. of rock.. I mean, a living legend. And uh, a legend of rock and roll.. and.. just thanks for being on the show, and.. [smacks himself even harder] GOD DANGIT! That sounded stupid! I knew I'd screw up!Paul McCartney: You did fine, you did fine, Chris.
Chris Farley: Really? Thanks, man. Thanks. Thank you. [Outro
music comes on, Chris continues to talk to Paul] Remember.. remember when I was talking to you about "The Terminator"? You.. you should see that movie, it's pretty cool..[ Paul nods his head ]


Monday, August 25, 2008

Welcome to Farleyville, here it is the first post for the blog. Chris touched my life back in '92 (I believe) when I first caught him on Saturday Night Live. Yes I was 11 at the time and the only goal that I remember back then was staying up as late as possible, which was quite easy for me be it that my father was Exalted Ruler of the Elks Club, lodge 541 that year and always took my mom with him to the bar. I would stay home and "babysit" my brother who was 6 at the time. And when I mean "sit" that is exactly what I would do. We would wrestle around in the basement imitating our favorite wrestlers at the time, his the Ultimate Warrior, mine Andre the Giant. We had recently discovered the WWF and the video tape library at Video Palace and were not exactly current on our wrestling. Therefore in our eyes Andre was still at the top of the federation but very limited in his abilities. His finisher at the time was the Giant Squash, which involved sitting on his opponent. So there I was sitting on my brother when I heard a Saturday Night Live commercial. I must have heard of it before and realized it was on late, so in my head I knew I had to stay up and watch it. So later that night, my brother had survived the giant squash and was off to bed and there I was fighting the sandman with the assistance of Coke, cereal and circus peanuts, ready for the show. Nothing stands out on that first viewing in particular, well except my instant liking of Chris Farley. I just remember a funny chubby child like looking man smiling ear to ear when Sharon Stone came out and realized he was just like me when cute girls were around. Later in the show Farley and Sandler tried to pick her up in a restaurant and just stumbled over there lines while talking to her. I thought it was the funniest thing ever. From then on I had found a hero, someone that I could really enjoy every time I saw him on the TV. That is when the VCR know how came into play. I could stay up and watch this "adult" show when my parents were not there, but if they were home, I couldn't do that, so I programmed the VCR to record every show on Saturday Night. Unfortunately some of those tapes were recorded over with my other discovery around that time of "USA Up All Nite." From then on every time I knew or heard that Farley was going to be on TV I made sure that I had a videotape ready. But of course I missed stuff and picked up stuff along the way. Right now I probably have about 100 things dealing with Chris. Obsessive yes, but hey somethings from your childhood just don't go away. Unlike Mr. Farley, hopefully his memory will live on.