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Wednesday, February 22, 2006

David M. Israel

okay, i know i promised some news regarding the BE film... what can i say? these things just take forever. but really now, any day... inches from announcing.

other than that, you can look for a new essay (actually a send-up) in the los angeles times magazine come april. i'll post links once i get 'em.

in the meantime, it's high time i introduced all you faithful readers to another david israel, the original david israel... david m. israel.

if you haven't heard of him, that's about to change. here's the scoop:

one day last year i started getting royalty checks from ascap. small ones, mind you, but hey, we struggling ar-teests take what kopeks sail our way and quickly deposit them in the bank. usually without looking at the source. i mean when the net total of a check is less than the cost of a pack of chicklets, does it matter where the money is coming from? no, it doesn't matter.

unless that money isn't yours to begin with. see, due to some bizarre corporate screw-up, a song that was written for the show 3rd rock from the sun was being attributed to yours truly. when, in fact, the actual author was david m. israel: sports writer, seasoned tv scribe/producer, and as i've recently come to learn, one pretty hilarious dude.

once i realized the money didn't belong to me, i started to feel guilty, of course, and immediately got my secretary to place a call to david's agent. my secretary shot back, "yeah, right. how can i do that when i don't even exist? loser." so i was forced to suck it up and make the call myself.

i left word with the agency and a few hours later the phone rang:

"Is this David Israel?"
"Yes. Who's this?"
"David Israel."
"Speaking. Who is this please?"
"David Israel."
"Yes, this is David Israel."

and just like that, in a "who's on first" moment, a friendships was born.

turns out, david m. israel had been googling himself just the day before (it's okay, we all do, admit it) and my website, er, that would be THIS website, came up. so he already knew a little about me. (whoa, mental note for a good future episode of the twilight zone: he googles himself, finds my website, and reads this entry even before we speak on the phone. scaaary. okay, maybe not.)

so finally, after many months of procrastinating, we finally did meet. at nate 'n al's famous deli in beverly hills. i, of course, picked up the check. how could i not, right? 'cause i'd been pocketing his checks all along.

and wouldn't you know it, the bill came to almost exactly the same amount i owed him. give or take a couple kopeks.

so what's the moral? easy: always order the cheapest sandwich on the menu when it's your turn to foot the bill. (converserly, when it's the other guy's turn, always order the most expensive)

and now that i know david, and have met his lovely wife and three cool kids--even though they don't know which sports teams kick butt yet (philly's!) and which stink--but hey, they're only kids, right?--i can honestly say that the guy is a first class guy. and not only because he believed me when i told him the bill at nate 'n al's equaled what i owed him from ascap--no, not at all. but because david m. israel had the guts to wrap tefillin with a total chasid-stranger outside the deli in the middle of beverly hills. i mean, COME ON, if that ain't worth giving it up for the guy, what is?

here's some photos for those who don't believe me.

finally, since his life is a helluva lot more interesting than mine at the moment (his brand new tv show has been ordered to pilot by nbc), you might be getting some curious entries by the man himself over the coming weeks. no promises. 'cause he's pretty busy at the moment. but i'm just saying... all david israels are welcome at davidisrael.net -- we don't discriminate based on middle initials here. no sir.

the david israels do nate 'n als