Ron Rudolph turns 75 next week. So his friend Vince DiFiore called a bunch of us to come out and celebrate this auspicious occasion. This morning 8 of us, including Ron, gathered in the local Ruby's for breakfast and (loud) story telling. We had a great time (as can be seen by Ron's face below) although I am not sure all the other customers were delighted at the raucous sounds generated by a bunch of white-haired fellows.
I'm not certain but I think I first met Ron when we performed with the Prime Time Players in Once Upon a Mattress about 9 years ago. I talked about this year's production, in which Ron was a co-star here. I've only done 2 of the Prime Time shows but Ron has been in many.
We also performed together in the Los Angeles Jewish Theatre's 2003 production of Paddy Chayefsky's The 10th Man. That was a time of cementing friendships between myself, Ron and John Briganti (who also was at the breakfast today). We formed a carpool to make the commute from the South Bay to Hollywood for rehearsals and performances. We spent many long hours on the Harbor and Hollywood Freeways. Since that time, the 3 of us get together on a semi-regular basis for lunch. Occasionally, a 4th member of that cast, Larry Gelman comes in from Hollywood to join us as we share so many memorable stories about our acting experiences.
I have a special place in my heart for Ron. Three years ago, after I had triple-bypass surgery, he not only visited me but was the person who got me out of the house first, taking me for lunch at a local restaurant where John joined us. That was the real start of my full recovery.
So, Happy Birthday Ron (even if it's a week early)! You and Kathy are truly good friends.