Friday, May 1, 2009

"Chaos Experiment" Premier

"Chaos Experiment" starring Val Kilmer, Armand Assante and Eric Roberts (with ME as Armand's boss, police Lt. Clark) will open on May 5th with a special showing for cast and crew at the Celebration Cinemas in Grand Rapids.

You can see the trailer here: You can hear my voice talking to Armand Assante about 40 seconds in and you will see me, if you look quick, for around 3 or 4 seconds....

I will be live on Grand Rapids Fox 17 at around 8:15 Tuesday morning to promote the movie, so I got that going for me too! (It ain't no word of knowledge from the Dali Lama, but its no swift kick to the groin area either....)

Unfortunately, if you're hot to see the movie on the big screen, (and I know that are - you may never again have a chance to see me and Val and Armand on the big screen all together at once), you only have two options:

1. Make your travel arrangements and book your hotel rooms in Grand Rapids NOW so you can see it while it's in town all next week OR
2. Rent yourself a big-ass theater, select the best seats in the house for yourself and that special someone and invite a couple hundred of your closest friends to come and watch it in movie-house style when it comes out on DVD June. (My advice is offer real butter for the popcorn. You can charge extra for real butter and I'm pretty sure you will make a profit on concessions alone. Especially if you invite Larry Kavanagh. Or any of those Kavanaghs! That whole family absolutely freaks for popcorn!)

But there will be no national run for this film. A week in G.R., (which is a wonderful place to visit this time of year), and on to Blu-ray (whatever the hell that is) and DVD.

I have to admit, it's just the slightest bit bittersweet. I'm mostly disappointed for my legion of fan who's been anxiously waiting for the film to come to his favorite cinema in his own hometown...

(Wait a minute... I have five kids and three grandsons all over America...put 'em all in one room and trust me, THAT'S a legion! And I'm pretty sure most of them are fans! They have been looking forward to watching it the way God meant for them to watch it: In glorious Technicolor on the biggest screen available!)

I've been fortunate to get in a couple of other films coming up, (more on that in another post), but this is a very nice role - by far my biggest- and I spent the better part of the winter and spring telling everyone I owe I know about being in the trailer and how it's gonna be all over the place and how maybe it could lead to other things and how cool I am and how lucky they are to know me personally and DAMN! WHY DOES HUMILITY HAVE TO BE SO HUMILIATING???

But I'm not bitter. I'm in a movie! And I'm not just scenery!! They let me talk and everything!

So go on you guys, buy the DVD! Rent a theater and have "Chaos Experiment" viewing parties (and report your earnings to whoever you report that stuff to because I'm pretty sure residuals get paid based on some complicated formula involving ticket sales).

And put real butter on the popcorn! Screw the cholesterol!

And oh, by the way...there are over thirty films green lighted to be made in Michigan this year as a result of the fantastic new Michigan Tax Incentive law! So keep a good thought for me going forward. I have a couple of genuine credits after my name now! THEY'D BE FOOLS NOT TO CAST ME!! (And these people ain't no fools)...

Better Days Ahead!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Instant messaging...disaster in the wings.

So I was on the Crackbook this morning and I saw that my old pal Larry was on there and I thought I'd shoot him a little Instant Message and say hello.

"Hello Larry!" says I in a note.

"Life is good?" I queried further.

"What's new at the zoo?" I joked to my chum.

"So how's the cruise biz?" I ask. (Larry has been a big ol' muckity muck with one of the cruise lines for like ever).

Sadly for me there was no response.

But I could see him there! I knew he was on the site! Thanks to the miracle age in which we live I could even see that he was making little type marks and was actively 'speaking' to somebody.

Then there was nothing. No happy face like this :) or a happy face with a wink ;). Not even a frowny face :( to show me he was angry with me.

(I should explain at this point that I haven't actually spoken to Larry in 20 years. I haven't seen him face to face in at least that long. But we're pals still, right? We shared rent in a space in St. Pete with 14 of our closest friends in 1973 for crying out loud! We sang James Taylor songs together on the beach!)

(Of course we also over indulged in all manner of stimulants, they being the times that they were and all. Frankly I should further note that I've always been too loud for my own good and - especially in those days - I was often wildly inappropriate in my speech and manners. And we didn't- technically- 'share rent'. Larry and some others actually 'paid rent'. I just more or less stayed there. And, now that I think about it, I sort of ate there Was it possible...could it be that from the time Larry had accepted my "Friend request" to the time I began this attempt at an instant chat that he had remembered me for who I was way back in the day? Somehow does the odor of my past cling to me still and bring to mind the heinous prat that I was in my youth???)

("No. We're friends", I think in the back of my mind. "You're being an ass". But then I remember William Hurts line from "Big Chill",
"Friends? What friends. We knew each other for a short time 20 years ago. That makes us friends?")

"Um Larry," I write in an act of contrition, "Look man. It's possible that, you know, way back in the day, I may of , er, said something...or maybe even done something that was inappropriate or unkind or...whatever. Look dude. I'm sorry okay?"

Nada. Zippo. No response.

Yeah? I got along just fine with no Larry for the past twenty years! I don't need no Larry!

All I need is this ashtray. That's all I need.

The ashtray and this paddle game and that's all I need.

And this remote control...

Wait a that a new message in my mailbox? Hey! It's from Larry!! What a nut! He hasn't a clue how that whole Instant Message thing even works! "What is that?" he asks.

What that is is Instant Messaging. And this, (my old palsy walsy Larry) is how it works...

What you do is look at the bottom right hand corner of your page when you are on F/book where it has a little blue bust of a man and it says Online Friends. Click on that and this deal pops up that shows which of your friends are currently on F/book.

(Go ahead an give it a try. I'll wait).

Then you click on the name of who you want to chat with and another little box pops up to the left of that with a picture of the person with their name next to it.

(Did you try it? Good for you!)

At the bottom of that box are some cartoon conversation bubbles. You type what you want to say in that little space, (like I did to you old Larry old friend of my youth), hit return and what you said will show up on their computer. They can type a response in their little box, hit return (like you did NOT do for me but I'm not bitter you bastard) and VOILA!!


The problem with it is that it can act like reverse caller ID.

See, I knew you were online. I figured we could have a little chat response.

Mmm bummer, I confess was my thought. Larry hates me. Larry probably never liked me to begin with. Well screw Larry! I don't need no stinking Larry!! I DON'T CARE!!!

...and you can see the potential for disaster. Not to mention the fact that if you're like me you have already accepted some people as friends that you really don't want to be friends with, but you didn't want to be mean to them either, so you went ahead and accepted their friend request thinking, "What the hell? What's it gonna hurt?"

And the next thing you know you got some mook from Two Fish Falls saying, "Hey Larry!!! I heard you were in the Cruise Biz and me and the little lady wanna go to Antigua on a boat! An' she said, 'Cruise? You idjit! We cain't afford no friggin' cruise!' I said to her, 'Sure we can afford it! Ol' Larry can prolly get us on there for damned near free!', an' she said, 'Aw hell, Larry don' even remember who we are...' An' I said, 'Oh no? We's frens on that durned Facebook!!! Won't remember us?? Hellfire woman, we pacticly related him an' us' ! So hows 'bout it ol' chum ol pal ol fren?? When do we set sail???"

Of course it could be worse. It could be a relative with a legitimate claim to a free ride. Of course they probably already know your phone number.... But with a phone YOU CAN SEE THEM COMING!!!

My advice? When you see 'em on F/book just pretend you don't know how that damn Instant Messaging even works! They probably won't suspect a thing...

Hey wait a minute...

Anyway, for better or for worse, I'll probably see ya on the 'book.

In the meantime, better days ahead!


Monday, January 26, 2009

Random Notes

I got this little exercise passed along to me from Dave Davies on Please feel free to comment back 25 random things about yourself. I would love to know more about you...

25 Random Things About Me

(Rules: You are supposed to write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about yourself. The idea is that people respond in kind and we find out more about each other...

1. Indian River, Michigan is one of my favorite places anywhere, anytime of the year.

2. I am almost always well intentioned....

3. ...but am often unitentionally inappropriate.

4. I honestly believe that most people don't listen to enough music, and when they do they limit themselves in their selections based on what they already know.

5. I think everyone should read "Lust Lizard of Meloncholy Cove" and "Practical Demon Keeping" by Christopher Moore.

6. I believe that most people are way too "Thou Shalt Not" and not nearly enough "I shall".

7. I really, honest to God, just don't care about your politics.

8. I do believe that where there's life, there's hope.

9. I regret that I am so bad with money.

10. I have been a lucky duck when it comes to friends.

11. I love words.

12. I just want to make those fuckers laugh.

13. Yeah, I also don't care about your religion.

14. I really dig spicey breakfast sausage.

15. I have a limited repertoire, but I love to cook.

16. Five years ago I was a top sales executive for a nationally traded company.

17. Three years ago I was a pretty crappy Business Consultant for GMAC Real Estate.

18. Last year I sold my guitar to get gas money to get to an audition.

19. I have five unbelievably cool children and three grandsons that I am very proud of.

20. I want, more than anything else, for my children to be proud of me.

21. I have had the most incredible journey so far.

22. I can get way too emotional about things. I remember crying when Sarge yelled at Gomer in front of the other troops...

23. I can still recite entire scenes from Firesign Theatre's "Don't Crush That Dwarf, Hand Me The Pliers".

24. I sometimes take things too personally.

25. I am an actor and that's what I do. I am not screwing around over here....

So...tell me some random things about yourself.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Roast Pork with Red Wine Reduction

My son Aaron works at a great Italian tratoria, "Cafe Citti" in Kenwood, California (north of San Francisco near Sonoma and Santa Rosa. (You can go to for a review.)

I can tell you that I've enjoyed Italian food from all over, and one of my best friends in the world, Bill Nico, is a fabulous chef who specializes in the Italian tradition. But I have to say that some of the best meals I've ever eaten were served to me at Cafe Citti....

If you are touring Sonoma County vineyards, (you can find a list of close by vineyards at:, you need to take a meal at Cafe Citti. The atmosphere is funky cool and casual, the wine list includes many outstanding local vintages. You may find yourself dining next to Joe Montana or Tommy Smothers or any number of celebrities who enjoy "wine country". Ask for Aaron. He'll hook you up in the manner to which you'd like to become accustomed. The following pork roast recipe is adapted from one that they prepare.

Roast Pork with Red Wine Reduction

Preheat oven to around 425 degrees

I use about a 4 lb pork roast trimmed of excess fat and covered in olive oil, salt and peppered liberally and placed fat side up in the center of a roasting pan or glass cake pan.

Surround the roast with quartered baby red and/or Yukon gold potatoes, carrots, cherry tomatoes and three or four garlic cloves minced and sprinkled in with the veggies.

Slice up a couple of garlic cloves, make half a dozen slits in the top of the roast and insert the slivered cloves.

My sons recipe calls for dried porcinni mushrooms powdered in a blender and sprinkled on top of the roast with the salt and pepper, but it's too damned expensive, so I just use the old food proccessor to fine-chop some fresh mushrooms, (maybe 6 or 7 - however many you need to spread evenly), mixed with a 1/8 cup of Italian breadcrumbs slathered on top of the roast after I salt and pepper it.

Pop it in the oven and cook until around 155 degrees in the center using a meat thermometer, (it should be five to ten degrees below where the meat thermometer says it's done, about an hour in my oven). When you get there, pull it out and let it rest for at least ten minutes before slicing.

While the roast is cooking, take a bottle of cheap red wine of your choice, (my son uses Chianti, but I usually buy an inexpensive Cabernet), pour it in a sauce pan and add a chopped shallot or a couple of green onions and reduce by half over med high heat. Add chicken broth to original depth and reduce by half again. Strain out onion/shallot and stir in about a half stick of butter (Okay...I use a whole stick, but many people find that too rich). While stirring in butter, add a bit of flour or corn starch so you have a smooth sauce-like consistency.

Slice your roast thin and plate with the veggies. Drizzle your reduction over the whole deal and....HOLY CATS!!! That son-of-a-sailing-sea-cook is mighty tasty!

If there are leftovers, I generally slice it real thin, pile it on a slice of focacia bread and drizzle with the reduction and serve it open-face with some pesto-mayo on the side.

Oh yeah...


...that's good.....

Doug Alchin / Credit to Aaron Alchin

Sunday, December 21, 2008


I'm not sure how I got all involved in this whole Facebook phenomenon, but there you go.

Like many things in life it started out innocently enough. Curiosity mostly. My kids were spending crazy amounts of time on the site. It got so I would send them an e-mail and not hear back from them for weeks. When I complained to Katie Rose, (my youngest at 18 and just graduated from high school), that I was waiting for her response to a commercial I was in that I had e-mailed her a couple of weeks before, she rolled her eyes and said something along the lines of, "Dad, please. Like I have time for e-mail". (The twenty first century equivalent to "Man, you can't explain rock n' roll" when my dad questioned my obsession with Jethro Tull in 1971).

So I decided I would check it out myself. (Sure, I'll try a little puff. What harm can it do?)

I got on-line and filled out the little info page:

Political Views: "Liberal Gun Owner" (Wow. I've found a new place to be clever!!)
Favorite Books: (Ooh, I can show people I'm well read, too! I always meant to read "War and Peace", I can put that down there, right?)
Favorite Quotations: (Um, what did I do with that book of quotations??)
And my very favorite, "What are you doing right now?" Daily update! Yes!!
People want to know this stuff! People need to know this stuff! "Doug Alchin is __________!" Mmmm, deep.

I up-loaded my head-shot and I was on my way!

I "Found Friends" by filling in the questionnaire about where I went to school and where I had worked.

I found myself in conversation with total strangers, "Hey, are you on Facebook?" "Yeah, I'm on Facebook!" "Hey! Me too! I'm on facebook!" "How do you spell your name??" "S-M-I-T-H! How do you spell your name??"

It wasn't long before I was uploading pictures and videos and building links to my website!

I joined Groups that never meet, because for some reason they have struck a serendipitous chord with me:
"Lovers of Firesign Theater" (Ah yes! I hearken back to the lost years at 18 or 19 when I'd find myself laughing hysterically at three o'clock in the morning listening to Don't Crush That Dwarf... while playing gin with Bill Nico in the apartment up above the Rosary Book Shop in downtown Lansing. I can still recite entire monologues from that record by heart. And they still make me laugh!);
Or "I Use My Hand To Show People What Part of Michigan I'm From" (Uh, yeah...Only my whole life long);
Or "I Used To Eat At El Azteca Underground", (Hey, it reminds me of Bobby Kahle idling the old Grand Prix - the one that was kicked by a horse - in front of the restaurant doors while he ran downstairs to down a quick margarita and pick up an order of botana's to go.)

I have promoted friends businesses:
"Friends of Handshake Productions" (Chris Guggemos' concert promotion business in Couer D'Alene);
"Friends of the Capitol City Blues Cruise (Scott Allmans Sunday night radio show which is in need of new sponsors);
And "Icarus Falling" (A really great theatre troupe that has done wonderful off-beat productions and was the first to pay me to act - $60.00 for three weeks rehearsals and two weekend productions - and that is struggling to keep going in this tough economy). (All donations cheerfully accepted...)

Like a common street pusher, I have uploaded my e-mail address books and invited my friends to join. (C'mon man. You're really gonna dig it. Don't worry baby, you can't get hooked just trying it one time...).

Of late I have been hearing from friends that I haven't heard from in decades:

Those cute little teenage girls I met on the beach in St. Petersburg when I was just out of high school and who are all cute little grandmothers now. They've been posting pictures of me and my buddies when we were all buff long-haired hippie kids playing music for quarters and dimes on the beach at Treasure Island.

All those Jesus people and their children from Shiloh /New Covenant, (my old church-gone-wrong), in various stages of rapture or ruin who sometimes wax nostalgic about their brush with sainthood....

I have to be careful to keep an eye on who I am while I look back at who I used to be.

Don't get me wrong. I seriously love it. There's so much to say, so much to see, so much to do! Why it's just like being alive!

But there's a reason why it's known as "Crackbook".

You should give it a try though. You know: Tune In, Turn On, just be careful that you don't end up...well, you know.