Local Celebrities: Watching the Stars Align


I watch television. Sometimes it blares local news or reality TV programming. Local celebrities seem heroic to appear in the commercials I have to endure. They jump in front of cameras, a feat not as easy as it appears. Whether it’s cars, mattresses or deeply discounted stereo equipment, advertising comes with the territory. These local stars hawk wares in a dying medium yet this post innovates. Introducing a new feature: The Star Struck Factor Rating. Each representative will be scored from 1 to 10 with 10 being the most petrifying degree of star struckness. Interesting enough, I had very few local celebrity encounters. The best example was eating at a restaurant where a Channel 12 weather person was sitting at the next table. I wasn’t exactly starstruck. I been saving this story for a humble brag when I needed one. Ultimately, I wanted to give the guy a chance to have dinner in peace and not deal with one more person who had seen him on TV. Who doesn’t deserve a night off from talking about the weather?

He Sells Enchiladas in Milwaukie

I’m not sure if this guy has a recognizable moniker or if he even uses his name in his commercials. I’ve seen him before pushing his margaritas but when I saw him in this asparagus get up I had to get a screenshot. Things that are gimmicky are still mostly fun and interesting so I would encourage this restauranter to keep pushing the envelope. I’m due for a visit to Milwaukie at some point and I may make it a point to check out his place because of the effort he makes to get people into the door.  

Star Struck Factor: 3  With this costume I might not recognize him but he seems like a nice, low key type of person so I’d imagine a friendly encounter.

Most Outrageous!

Rumor and probably research would reveal this guy to be related to Tom Peterson–the patron saint of local advertising appearances. Heck even Kurt Cobain sported a Tom Peterson watch and if this Outrageous Audio guy had a watch I’d get one. As far as I know he doesn’t blast his name out in advertising. There no time. He’s too busy pushing the product in an outlandish way. It’s all crazy deals smothered in crazy sauce. I have to say–it works. The commercials are never dull and while it doesn’t feel quiet like a mental breakdown in progress, it’s close. That’s the fun.

Star Struck Factor: 8  I think I’d actually be a bit afraid to meet this guy but it would be interesting to see if his TV persona is all an act.

Lampee: How you want your dentist.

So a dentist doing his own advertising could go south pretty quick but Dr. Lampee pulls it off by being genuine and offering a gentle onscreen presence. His commercials wouldn’t scare anyone off. 

Star Struck Factor: 6  Dr. Lampee seems likable and the kind of person who would have the patience to explain a tricky procedure in a gentle and patient manner.

Calling Dr. Darm

Dr. Darm seems like a nice guy who does important human body work. He’s soft spoken but his demeanor is reassuring. He’s recently brought on a partner to appear with him in the commercials. The business like low key approach to their practice feels like these two would be helpful in the way all goods doctor should be.

Star Struck Factor:  9.5  I think I would be like, “woah, it’s Dr. Darm! Then I would start shaking. Dr. Darm is a star to me. He’s been around a while which increases his star power. 

Siblings Working Together

This is a team with good chemistry–they are family after all, but they also have good natural screen presence in the commercials they make to sell cars. Their most recent ad made references to their sibling rivalry and included an 80’s flashback. Everything about them feels good.

Star Struck Factor:  There are two of them. There’s a certain intensity to these two but I think they would be friendly. There’s still that added pressure that I would end up buying a car.

Bedmart: One Stop Bed Shopping

This celebrity has me harkening back to the days of Bedmart Mom and actually missing her a bit. As far as I know this spokesperson is anonymous while Bedmart Mom wasn’t. In the old commercials a woman introduced herself as Bedmart Mom as she splayed herself across a bed wearing silk pajamas. Mom was unceremoniously fazed out for a younger model who is upbeat, personable and smiley.

Star Struck Factor:  8.5  I think I’d be able to talk to this spokesperson but her star factor would make me nervous. I might actually flub my question about the whereabouts of Bedmart Mom. 

The Banner Boys Are Back in Town

This father and son team has fun making commercials and it shows. This photo is part of a sequence where the Dad knocks his son onto a mattress. Slapstick sells. It makes me appreciate the entertaining bits these guys come up with for their advertisements.

Star Struck Factor:  4  These guys are fun, genuine and likable and it feels like they don’t take life too seriously which makes me think they wouldn’t have intimidating attitudes. It’d be easy to tell them I like their commercials for the most part.

Seeing Through Window Guys

These window salesmen bravely make their own commercials. They haven’t let their lack of camera readiness stop them from appearing on camera. I find this admirable. I’ve rooted for for these guys and my patience has paid off. They’re beginning to step up their game. I’ve noticed some artistic growth and some gags that makes their window selling advertisements more interesting.

Star Struck Factor:  5  These guys are relatable and fun. I would avoid getting into the mechanics of how they make their commercials. It would be fascinating and a little scary to see them up close and in person. 

Leaf Guard Guy: I’m Not Buying!

Oh man is the Leaf Guard Guy professional. He’s got a smooth radio voice and a nice presence. The Leaf Guard message has an infomercial feel that puts me in a tizzy about the condition of my gutters and how I don’t want to pay this guy to fix them. He’s good but will I ever succumb to those velvet tones working to convince me I need to bite the bullet and finally fix my gutters? He keeps working me. How have I not dialed that number to get the incentive prize of an ipad or restaurant coupon?  

Star Struck Factor:  ?  I can’t put a number on it right now. I think the guy bothers me because I can’t get a read on him. He’s a pro but it’s too much. I would not be able to engage with him. He’d keep working me, selling me until I was on my knees. The real guy would disappoint me or sell me Leaf Guard. He may not actually be a local so my worries may be unfounded.

Wall to Wall Carpet Carl

Carpet Carl was the first local celebrity I recall and I’ve been following his career through his commercials. Does he work at a Marion’s store? Does he really sell carpets or does he just do it on TV? The research department is on it’s way for an interoffice retreat at one of the stores. What I’ve noticed is Carpet Carl is no longer referred to by his stage name. He’s now just an anonymous shill who’s shed his moniker. As great a nickname as it is, I could see how it would get old. 

Star Struck Factor: 10 of 10  I think it’s the name and how I would be stammering while saying it out loud. Surely this would cause me embarrassment. I’d worry about his reaction to being called Carpet Carl. He’s a local legend so the kind of awe I have for him would leave me speechless.

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