In this episode, Mark Yuzuik and Yolanda Martinez, together with CHiPs star turned tech entrepreneur, Larry Wilcox, enjoy a casual conversation about life. Larry shares his experience with Make A Wish Foundation and how he found out that his show was one of the reasons why the foundation began. He discusses the different avenues he’s been pursuing after his life as a celebrity while giving a glimpse of what the film industry really is like on the inside. Larry also shares some behind the scenes stories as he recalls the days of how he started in the film business up until the peak of his stardom. As an entrepreneur leaning towards technology, he also gives a sneak peek on what they’re developing that could possibly be a step towards providing a solution for COVID-19.
Listen to the podcast here:
From CHiPs Star To Tech Entrepreneur With Larry Wilcox
We want to bring our friend on, Larry Wilcox, from the TV show, CHiPs. He’s here but he’s way more than that. Wait until you know what he’s been doing. He just got a high jump record. He jumped higher than anybody else. He’s up to 2 feet.
Talk about vertical leap.
Are you talking about a high jump with him on the horse or just high jumping?
No, he can’t do that￼. It’s good to see you again, Larry.
Thank you. It’s good to see you too.
We’re hoping we’ll do a watch party because a lot of people have been asking me, “When is he coming on?” I’ve been talking about it and then they go, “You don’t really know him.” I was like, “No, Yolanda does.”
People have been asking how did we meet you and how did we know you. We’ve mentioned having your son here, Chad, coming over for dinner, eating fire, and you getting video.
For the audience, I sent my son Chad, who was a basketball player. He’s 6’4” and a nice boy. He graduated from TCU and is working for Gartner as a consultant for big businesses. He’s learning so much and having a great time. His experiences with you two were memorable and he was impressed when he swallowed that fire. I’m like, “Get out of there. What are they teaching you?” He did it and that was cool. You taught him.
You should have seen the lit up. When I said, “You’re going to come over for dinner and I’ll have you eat fire. He’s like, “Okay.” He comes over sometimes for dinner and he thought the fire eating was a joke. I was outside because I’m going to do this outside. I don’t want to burn the house down. I don’t know if he’s going to drop it or not. He’s inside our living room. We got these big windows and Yolanda was in the kitchen. I don’t think he knew Yolanda was there. I’m lighting the torch and I’m showing him how to do it. I can’t hear him and he can see me. Yolanda says, “There’s no way I’m doing that.”
He kept pacing back and forth in front of the window. He’s like, “No way. I’m not doing that.”
I said, “Don’t tell your dad until after we do it.”
I don’t know how he got into your brain, Chad, but that’s impressive. Going to dinner and swallowing fire.
Welcome to our house for dinner because we’ll have you eat fire.
Before you get your shoes off, you have to eat fire.
I think I’ll pass.
It’s crazy. It’s been a while since we got to see you. We saw the movie, Wish Man. What a great movie.
I thought they did a good job in the movie. It was interesting. You had me go down to the Secret Knock and you’re calling me in my car. I said, “I can’t drive to San Diego right now. What are you talking about?” “How long would it take you?” “I don’t know. If I drive fast, maybe a 2.5-hour drive.” “Hurry up and get going.” The next thing I know, I’m in Secret Knock and there you are working. I’m in shorts and everyone’s dressed professionally in suits and so on. Men and women and they are all business people and entrepreneurs. I walked in with my shorts. It’s like, “Wannabe actor CHiPs guy, here he comes. What’s he doing? Is he a bum now? Where’s his hotdog stand? It’s outside.”
Maybe we aren’t paying as much as we thought.
No pay, but you can meet all these people. The next thing I know, I met Frank Shankwitz, which was a great story. I ended up doing a little cameo in his movie. What a great story about Make-A-Wish Foundation and how it got started.
A lot of people don’t know how it got started. They’ve got to watch the movie, Wish Man. Do you know the main actor in there? Is he English?
Australian, I think.
We hypnotized him at the Secret Knock and he is the funniest person under hypnosis you’ll ever see.
We have the video somewhere. I should find it and post it.
Wish Man is about Frank Shankwitz‘s life. He was a policeman and this is how the whole thing started. You are such an influence on Make-A-Wish Foundation and people don’t realize this. What happened was Frank got in a motorcycle accident. He was a real police officer. He didn’t have the best upbringing of his mother or father. I remember him in the movie getting a call to go down to Chicago or something for this little boy. He was dying of leukemia and his whole wish was, “I want to be a police officer,” CHP.
He used to watch this TV show, CHiPs, and it inspired him. That’s all he wanted to do in life. His dying wish was, “I want to be that.” Frank Shankwitz, because of the TV show CHiPs, started Make-A-Wish Foundation. To this day, he never took any dime from it. It all goes back. One of the things was that that boy wanted to be a real policeman before he died, and the Make-A-Wish Foundation started all because of your TV show.
He was truly a police officer before he died because they gave him everything. When I found out the whole story, I’m like, “Frank Shankwitz, the Founder of Make-A-Wish Foundation, is going to be at the Secret Knock.” He’s there every year so we know him. I said, “Greg, do you want to meet Larry Wilcox, who is on the TV show, CHiPs. Frank doesn’t know him.” He’s surprised and he goes, “That would be great.” That’s why I called you and said, “Larry, you’ve got to get down here.”
It was a wonderful movie. Those guys did a good job. Some guys with limited budgets don’t do so well but I felt like the story was good and the editing was good. The director did a good job. The director, in my opinion, was a star in the whole production. In retrospect, I can remember the publicist of MGM Studios coming to Erik and myself while we were filming CHiPs and telling us this story. The boy only had maybe a day or two to live. They were trying to schedule so we could both fly to meet him like the movie where Frank meets him, but we were literally going to go meet him.
The production couldn’t fix the schedule and you think to yourself, “Why couldn’t they fix the schedule?” Anyway, they didn’t and we couldn’t. In the end, we sent a package of photos of CHiPs, autographs and so on to him. In my opinion, it’s not the same. I gave a little speech after the first screening of the movie. They had the actors up on the stage talking and I said, “Every time I go to one of these children’s hospitals and meet these kids with leukemia or fatal diseases, I can’t go anymore because I’ll start crying.” I’m worried that I make it worse for everybody because I’m looking in their eyes and crying, saying to God, “Don’t take this boy or girl.” It’s sad. They’re special people for a special cause.
Those kids are appreciative of the life they have in the hospital. People in the world complain because the internet is not fast enough. We started donating to Cure 4 The Kids in Las Vegas and 100% goes to them. To see those kids go to the hospital and Gwen Stefani is part of it. Criss Angel is a big donator. We have a lot of celebrities that donate and take it. It’s amazing to walk through there and see the kids and how they smile with no hair. Going through that, you’re thinking, “I will never complain about anything ever again.”
There are a couple of things I always say that you could go to one of those hospitals as an adult and get educated on what wisdom is because they’re wise about death and their time. They’re articulate about it. It always blows my mind that they just put it out there and talk about it candidly and so on. Some people would be surprised that the kids, youth, and adults go through this twelve-step program. Almost every human being I’ve met needs to go through the twelve-step program. It teaches you about your head, what you are, how to be vulnerable, humble and grateful. Those are the tools in life that you want a human being to have. Not how much money he made, what car he drives, and who he’s with. It’s good stuff.
Speaking of cars, did you use to race cars?
I used to race. I love racing, I don’t know why. I like the adrenaline and the fear probably from Vietnam. The fear quotient excites me. When you’re coming around the corner at 100-plus miles an hour and you have to drift almost to the wall so the air compressors pushes you back out. That’s a scary feeling. That wall is getting closer and you’re about ready to crash, and then that compressed air pushes you back out. Stuff like that was fun. I liked racing open-wheel cars, maybe better than close wheels.
Formula Ford was the only thing I was racing. My son is a better racer than me. My oldest son, Derek, was a runner-up national champion in go-karts. Most of the Formula 1 race car drivers start in go-karts and then they go up the ladder, Formula 3, Formula 2, and Formula 1. I love Formula 1 so I have to get up at 3:00 in the morning to watch the race in Austria or wherever but I enjoy it. Mine was a combination of a wannabe racer because it’s like, “What did you race?” “I raced the Volkswagen Rabbits.” “How fast did you go in those?” “I went 110 miles an hour.”The older you get, hopefully, you learn to appreciate your spouse more. Click To Tweet
It’s still those little bumblebees and they all sound the same. They’re all in a pack together and then finally someone bumps you, pitches you off the road, and you’ve got to get back on. It’s a lot of dirty playing but I learned a lot from it. I went to all the race schools all the time to get your threshold up. In racing, 100 miles an hour feels like 50 miles an hour, etc. As you get your threshold up, then you’re good. There’s good and bad about it. I go to Bob Bondurant race school and Jim Russell race school, you name it. I raced off-road trucks, 130 miles an hour, pickups in Baja 1000, the Mint 400 in Vegas, and the Frontier 500. All those races I raced, and then you pee blood for a day or two but it was fun.
It’s like firing. It’s always different. Firing is done in two seconds. You don’t hit the walls and you don’t have to wait for the wind. Nothing like that.
It’s one of those ephemeral sports. I went and did the Bonneville Salt Flats and even then, you don’t feel any speed there. There aren’t any trees to go by or anything at 150 miles an hour. My racing career was half publicity, some celebrity races, and some real races. I liked it and enjoyed it. Deep down, I was just a wannabe but I liked it.
Are you still doing it?
No. I’d like to race airplanes but I want to make sure that my eye-hand coordination is good enough. I know my vertical leap is good but I don’t know about my eye-hand coordination. I’m teasing.
You got the record with that vertical leap with your age bracket.
Can I jump up to that airplane and jump out? I love flying and I love racing.
Do you own a plane?
I don’t anymore. I owned one all through CHiPs and after for a while. It’s not good for a young guy to own an airplane.
Not a daredevil young guy.
I was immortal. I used to give surfers haircuts in Malibu and I’m with my prop. They saw me coming and they’re like, “Who is this nutcase?” They would start getting down on their surfboard.
Do you have a Tesla?
I had a cool airplane￼. I had a military plane called the Navy On with a glass cockpit that slid back and it was cool. I bought it and I didn’t even know how to fly. I learned to fly in the airplane and then I turned it into a hot rod with all kinds of change angle incidents, six degrees on my wings, and put all new engines in and three-bladed props. I had special effects guys in the movie business make me a nose ball so it would be faster. In no steps or anything hanging on, my wife said, “How do I get in this airplane?” “If you can’t jump on the wing, you don’t get in.” She’s like, “What do you mean?” “This is a Hot Rod. This isn’t a John Travolta plane.”
I flew into Cedar City one day in my Hot Rod plane and landed to get gas because I was flying up to Wyoming. I put my canopy back real cool like, “Top Gun here. What are you doing?” He said, “Aren’t you the guy from CHiPs?” “Yeah, I am.” He said, “What are you doing flying this whole piece of crap?” I’m like, “What did you say? This is my airplane and I’m proud of it. What are you talking about?” I loved it.
Was that Marlene?
Marlene and I were flying together and she used to get me upset. In all respect to women, I wanted to fly from X to Y. I land in Wyoming and Wyoming is 7,000 square-feet at level, so you have to fly high over the Tetons and stuff. She’s like, “I’ve got to go to the bathroom.” I was like, “Right now? I’ve got to land somewhere so you can go to the bathroom? Here’s a Coke bottle. That will work.”
She’d be able to jump in that way. She’s an athlete.
She’s the real thing. The older you get, hopefully, you learn to appreciate your spouse more. Think when you’re younger, you have those stupid male identity crises and you’re proving a bunch of unnecessary crap. You’re stubborn and she’s telling you you should do X. “No, I’m doing Y. You don’t understand.” No, she understood. When she says, “You shouldn’t trim the roses that way.” “How would you like me to do it?” I know she’s right. I used to argue. From roses everything, I listen to her now. She’s a beautiful girl and she’s such a giving human being. She’s a world-class athlete, a real one and not a wannabe actor out there putting lipstick on. She was a world-class track and field athlete Olympian in seven events. She’s my hero and she’s a great girl.
She’s definitely a super achiever. How many women go to the Olympics?
You have to be little nuts and a little alpha male and alpha female. There are times I like to turn her alpha female off. “I’m the alpha. Did you forget?” Yes, she forgot.
Did she give you permission to be the alpha at that time, remember?
That’s right. I’m the surrogate alpha. When she’s not there, I’ve got to be there.
They did a movie, CHiPs, right?
Yeah, they did a movie and they call it CHiPs the movie or something. I don’t like it. It wasn’t good.
Were you in it?
No, I wasn’t in it. It was terrible.
We gave it 1 star out of 10.
Every time they try to remake shows that were a hit, and then they try to make it into a movie, it’s never going to be the same.
First of all, Larry got that produced and they got the money too, so shut up. You’re right. That’s a neat achievement and God bless him for doing that. What they did is they want to steal the marquee, the brand or something, and leverage it in their own story. It looked like Dax Shepard was on crack when he wrote it because it was all over the place. When I saw the first trailer, I said, “Is this soft porn for the CHP?”
I don’t know the outcome. They portray the biggest pervert out there.
I own the rights to it at one time and I would like to get the rights back. I own the rights and I thought it sold to USA Network at one time with CAA helping me and then for whatever reason it fell out like all things in the film business. You spec and spec into poverty, so you’ve got to be careful how much speculation you do. We had done that multiple times, and then they did this movie. If it was done right, maybe Ponch and Jon could have a little cameo in it.
I would put Ponch in there for a lot more than a cameo.
Maybe I’ll hire you then as a producer. Anyway, that’s over and onward and upward. I watched a movie that Tarantino did about Hollywood. There’s a story about whatever with Leonardo DiCaprio and all the good actors. I’m watching that and I’m like, “You wanted to be an actor. What was wrong with you?” I’m looking at the things he’s going through, talking in the mirror, and using the recorder. “How was that, honey? Was that good? Did I look good in that shot?” I’m like, “Will you shut up?” It’s embarrassing. You played house when you were 8, not 18.
Was that your first big role?
No, I had a bigger one. I starred in Lassie. Lassie was the star and I was the co-star but I was housebroken. It was fun. They would let Lassie on the Learjet first and then I could get on.
You were the star in Lassie? It’s been so long. I forgot about that show.
Don’t forget about it.
How old were you when you did that?
I was 21 playing the sixteen-year-old.
You were the boy? You’re the son?
Not the little guy who was Jon Provost. I did this in 1970. I just got out of the Marine Corps. I called my brother, Randy who was here in those days in Wyoming and where I’m from, a hit from Wyoming. I’m like, “Rands.” “What are you doing, Larry? “I’m a movie star.” “What do you mean?” “I just got a television series. I’m starring in Lassie.” He’s like, “You’re not the star. The dog is the star.” I’m like, “I’ll see you later, Rands.” The first episode that I was in, I didn’t even have a television so I had to buy a television to watch myself on TV. There I come. The show is on. In two minutes, nothing. “Where am I?” Five minutes, “Where am I?” In 7, 10, 15 minutes, “I might not be in this episode,” then there it is.
There’s the guy, Dale, the hick of hicks. Look at that all-American dummy. That was me. “Jump in the water, Larry.” I did all my own stunts because I didn’t know. They knew they had a hick here. “Pay this kid’s scale and he’ll do all the stunts also. He doesn’t know any better.” They would say, “You’re here at the Stanislaus River now. This river flows and it goes fast.” I’m a kid from Wyoming. I was in the Marine Corps. “You’re going to get up on that rock there in those cowboy boots and Levi’s and you’re going to jump off that rock into that river. You can swim, right?” “I can swim. Are you kidding me? I went through survival training in the Marine Corps with no water. Of course, I can swim.”
“You’re going to swim right down there. Do you see those guys in wetsuits by the rope?” “Yeah.” “When you get down by them, they’ll grab you and save you so you don’t keep going down of the waterfall.” “No problem.” “You’ll rescue Lassie and pull him in with the little gopher in his mouth or whatever he’s rescued.” “No problem.” I went by those guys on the rope so fast, they didn’t see me. I was like, “What happened to the rope and the scuba guy?” I’m going down the river and I started swimming to the side and grab some willows to get me out of there. “What is this?”
Another time, they said, “You’ll ride on one of those pump train cars,” where you pump the handle up and down, “The engine is going to push you to get up a little speed.” “No, you don’t have to push me. Just let me go down the hill.” “No, you’ll need a little push.” That thing was going up and down and I’m coming down that hill. “Right at the bottom, you jump off into that sand right there.” It was like that every day on Lassie. They had to deal with me. They got the numbskull from Wyoming.
You’re not even a star?
No. I did have a restroom but I wasn’t the star. A girl one time on my first day of filming came up. “Are you an actor?” “Yeah.” “Could I have your autograph?” I thought, “I’ve never given my autograph. I must have written her a paragraph.” A buddy said, “Just sign your name. You don’t write all that crap on the paper.”
She’s probably still got it going.
“Let him go, please. He’s going to be following me around. He’s a stalker.￼”
You have a heck of a career. From 21 doing some cameos and doing some things all over. You’re asked to go and do some appearances and sign some stuff. Have you ever worked with Erik still, your best friend?
I do. After CHiPs, I did movies of the week, and then I produced a television series that I created with a friend, Mark Massari, a good guy. It’s called The Ray Bradbury Theater for HBO. I produced that all over the world and the show won a lot of awards. That was good but in a way, I saw myself transitioning out of economic fear because as an actor, you make so much money for a short period of time. You have a shelf life. You can be the best actor in the world, but it doesn’t matter. There’s not a lot of luck and all kinds of issues. Who wants to be that and your life is frightening, so I went and directed.
I directed two of the highest-rated shows on CHiPs, and then I became the entrepreneur-businessman which crested that side of my ego. I flew around and bought the rights to the Yorkshire Ripper and made a deal with MGM and sold them that, and then Wolfman Jack and sold that to Columbia. The Dorothy Stratten Story, I produced The Death of a Playmate and I sold that to NBC, and then I bought the Waco Cult and that’s screwed out of that by NBC but I owned all the rights to the right people in the beginning.
What people don’t realize in the film business is you’re just still a speculator. There’s still no security in anything you’re doing. As I was doing that, I became more speculative. In a way, there’s a part of me that said, “You should have just kept acting because you had a brand and you didn’t perpetuate that brand any further. You started becoming a techie and a businessman.” Going away, I cut my nose off to spite my face. I hired a new agent and a manager, and we’ll see what happens.
Why would I do that? It produces a lot of income. This is a pompous statement and I like to think of myself as humble. I studied and trained a lot as an actor and I see guys that shouldn’t be acting. I’ll just say it that way. There are some big-name guys that are pretty but terrible. I would love to be anything, ugly character, actor, or whatever they want. I like doing that, but my passion is technology, so that’s what I’m working mostly on.
The pay scale now may be a lot better than when you were doing Lassie.
It would be better than Lassie, no doubt. The scale at that time was down there. It’s $400 for a week after fifteen stunts.
They didn’t pay you extra for doing the stunts?
No. One time, I did a Disney movie once and they said, “Would you ride that Brahma bull over there?” I said, “I’ll ride him.” “He isn’t a regular Brahma bull, Larry. He’s trained.” “What do you mean trained?” “He neck reins and everything.” “Like a horse?” “Yeah.” I said, “Where do I have to ride him?” “Just right down there through the zoo here.” “Who’s in the zoo?” “We’ll be there but don’t worry about it.” “Who else is in the zoo?” “That big tiger over there is going to be in the zoo. We’re going to let him loose and he’s going to just go by you to the other trainer because the other trainer is going to be over there making sure he comes right at you.”
“No, I’m not doing that.” “How come?” “Because I grew up in Wyoming, I know what’s going to happen.” “Are you scared? Are you a little baby?” “I’m not doing it.” “The stuntman will do it. Give him your wardrobe and he’ll do it for you, big baby.” I was like, “I want to smack this guy.” I gave him my clothes and he did it. Sure enough, the tiger got up on that bull. The bull ran and ripped it off, and was killing him. That bull just tore his bottom out. You can’t put two wild animals together like that. Once again, did I get any extra money? No, nothing.
At least, you got away from the tiger.
I was waving to some actresses up there probably.
That would be great if you got back in the acting, got some big rolls, and kicked it again.
It would be fun. After all, I was telling my agent and he said, “Larry, we’re going to rebuild your career because there isn’t any question about your talent. It’s a slow rebuild, unfortunately.” I said, “I’m okay. Just don’t send me on some job that they want me to be a sheriff for $500 for four days. I’m not interested. I don’t want to do it. Hire that guy over there, call Dwayne Johnson or whoever. I’m not doing it.”
You need a major role.
“Call Erik Estrada. Maybe he’ll do it.” I didn’t answer your question. He’s entertaining. Erik is a funny guy, bigger than life. You have to appreciate where someone comes from before you start doing your critique of Erik. Here’s a kid from Spanish Harlem, Puerto Rican, and a bouncer in a bar in North Hollywood. He became an actor and did some roles, and then did CHiPs. It gives you a false sense of power when you’re starring in a television series. I used to think back about when a lot of stars would come and do a guest role on CHiPs with us and I should have been kowtowing to them. Those were majors guys and said thank you for even doing this. Anyway, we were two young guys looking in the mirror and flexing our muscles so be it, but we do these big shows. We do those Comic-Cons.
Where you in Comic-Cons?
You should see the girls wanting to kiss me now.You have to appreciate where someone comes from before you start doing your critique. Click To Tweet
Is it the same girl that wanted your autograph the day you hang on and now they’re stalking you?
They’re the Idaho potato girls.
It’s like being in Lassie all over again.
They want a French kiss. “No, sorry.” “Can you just kiss me here?” “No.” “Can I show you my tattoo?” “No. I don’t want to see it.” “What’s wrong with you? Erik, let me do it.” “I’m a prude. I’ll see you later.” We’re big stars now.
Now you’re doing some roping and things like that, coming in and coming out of Vegas?
I got rid of all my horses and sold all my saddles. I said, “What are you doing? You started to be a hoarder. You’ve got about five saddles here. What are you doing with them?” Nothing. I felt bad selling my saddles. It’s weird that a cowboy sells the saddle. It’s like taking off your gun belt back in the days in the western. What I’m doing now is technology. We have this new technology that is a lighting technology that kills COVID-19. It’s good timing.
I can’t disclose the technology because it’s patented and confidential. In five seconds, we can kill 100 square-feet of COVID-19 on any surface, be it interior or exterior. It’s weird. Here you have a solution. There’s a combination of solutions that are necessary. There’s an ingress-egress portal that should be in facilities that people are going in and out. Certain nanometers would kill bacteria on you and those are available now.
The ones that you’re buying and the little ones and stuff that everybody sells, those aren’t enough. You have to have a certain power and those have to be within 6 inches of the bacteria. Ours can be 10 to 20 feet, it doesn’t matter. It’s the ingress-egress portal. The second thing you need, and you can maybe consider this, is the HVAC system, your heating and air conditioning system. There’s some neat technology called needlepoint ionization. I won’t bore you with it, but COVID-19 is not an organism so you don’t kill it. You’re decimating it and separating the bonds and the ions and so on.
As a result of that, this air conditioning system through a plasmid clears all of your air. It only costs like $500, $600, or $700 for a house. It’s important. That’s the second thing, and then the third thing is our system which you can walk around if you have a hazmat suit on because that light will hurt you and no human being could be in front of it. It’s dangerous, but it’s perfect for military ships, submarines, and buildings. At midnight, a guy goes through and zaps at all and it’s clean as clean can be.
Those are the three systems. That’s what we’re focused on. Do I know the governor of California? No. “You used to have all these networks. What happened to your network?” I don’t know the guy. I have to go online like everyone else, go to his portal, and fill out his form. “Do you have any technology that you have? We’re interested in hearing from the public.” Two weeks later, nothing. It’s the same on every level of bureaucracy. The question becomes, “People are dying every day and you can’t get this to them. Why not?” I don’t know. I’m not giving up. What I’m focused on is that technology. It’s a neat and wonderful technology and healing.
Hopefully, it gets out there. You don’t know how many people read this.
I tried to spread it to my little group, but I put it on Facebook on the timeline and all that stuff to try. I’ll try to help you in the future but I don’t know if you would consider me an influencer. Anyway, I’ll try to influence.
I’ve gotten many messages from people waiting for us. Somebody was like, “We’ll see you tomorrow. Larry is going to be on.” I’m like, “That’s Wednesday, so I’ll see you on Wednesday.” I kept getting messages and I’m like, “You’re on the wrong date. He will be here Wednesday so I will see you Wednesday.” I know that everybody that’s been texting and Facebook messaging. They’ve been looking forward to us having a conversation with you. We didn’t know where it was going. We started this whole thing when this whole pandemic started. We wanted people to talk, have a conversation, and realize, “We can still see each other through video, still connect, and still have a conversation.” That’s why we started Conversations with Mark & Yolanda to get that going. Look at us now, we’re talking to you. How fun is that? They watch all his craziness so they enjoy all his crazy stunts outside.
I saw you with your chainsaw.
That was not my idea.
To say the truth, she’s out there doing all this stuff.
First of all, if it would have been my idea, I would have not been wearing what I was wearing. I would have found the biggest goggles I could have found to put on my face and some gloves. He calls me outside and he’s like, “Do Facebook Live. Grab the chainsaw,” and I’m like, “What am I grabbing the chainsaw for?” “Because you’re going to cut some branches off that tree and people are going to watch. They want to see you do this stuff.” I’m like, “I don’t want people to see me doing this crazy stuff because that would be more safety cautious about it than you are.”
That thing is dangerous because that can kickback. When I was chainsawing or eating fire, she’s like, “Keep going.” She gets over 1,000 views. When I do Facebook Lives, I get nothing.
It’s the same with my wife. Someone said to me one day, “She could have done better.”
Was it her that said it?
No, it was her sister.
Somebody is asking if you still talk to Erik Estrada?
Not often though. I’m so busy in my business. I don’t know what I would talk to him about. Once in awhile I call him and say, “How are you doing? Is everything okay? Do you need anything?” Those kinds of things but other than that, I don’t talk to him. I don’t see him other than at Comic-Con.
It is not happening in 2020.
To answer your question, I don’t talk to him often.
We don’t see him doing much.
He did an infomercial for a while.
What was he selling? I don’t remember.
It was Arkansas land or something.
We don’t see him too much and we don’t hear about him doing much.
He’s a real policeman. He’s dealing with sexual predators on the internet.
Is it like Chris Hansen?
Yeah, and he uses me to entice them and he grabs them. He doesn’t use me. He went to St. Anthony, Idaho and became a police department member. I did taser him and all that stuff.
Does he live in Idaho?
He lives in North Hollywood. I’m sure there was a reason he went to St. Anthony to become a policeman. I lived in St. Anthony, Idaho in the summers with my grandmother. I said, “St. Anthony, that’s a little Mormon town.” I used to live there in the summer and pick potatoes and do all those wonderful things. “Why did you go to St. Anthony? It’s a tiny town.” My grandmother owned the St. Anthony hotel on the corner. I thought I was at the Hilton. You know what a kid thinks as a five-star is a low one-star.
It had a TV and a shower.
There were rows of rooms that I always didn’t want to go down where my grandma and her helper would clean. That was sheepherders’ alley and those were $2 a night. You don’t want to go down there. It was quite a story. It made good money though. We danced on the bar at night to Elvis Presley and made $0.25 and $0.50. We’re big moneymakers.
I bet you can still get that kind of money if you tried.
I probably could. I could be investing in Blue Chips or blue balls. I don’t know.
We have someone who’s asking if you have any favorite TV shows or series that you follow?
I like the SEAL Team.
I watch that. I love it.
I like it because I was in the Marine Corps and served in the war in Vietnam. I like all that stuff. The writing is weird on it though. It ends sometimes with no ending and it’s like, “What? That’s the end of the episode? Who wrote this?”
It’s so that the following week you’ll still watch it.
It’s like Blacklist but my favorite was Homeland.
I’m watching that on HBO. I love that.
That was from the beginning when the guy on Billions was on Homeland. I watch Billions. I love Billions. It’s about society, corruption, and how we buy each other’s souls. I’m not sure if the Wall Street broker is the bad guy or the Attorney General is the bad guy because they’re both bad all the time. Billions is a good one and Homeland was phenomenal. I still like to, once in a while, go back and look at Two and a Half Men because it’s funny as can be. He did such a good job before he got wacko and he was so good at it.
What’s the movie you liked to watch? Last Man Standing?
Tool Man Tim.
That’s a great show.
We saw him as a comic.
We saw him live.
People think that when they see you on TV, you’re Mr. Rogers. In real life, you’re not. I remember people walking out and I was like, “Tim said the F word.” You didn’t come to a gospel day. It said, “Adult content maybe there.” I didn’t think they were serious.
That’s like going to Tony Robbins not getting shocked because he says the F word.
I haven’t seen his show but they’re always good shows. If you search around, you’ll find something that appeals to your palate, and opinions are opinions. Hopefully, I answered that person’s question.
Are you still on MeTV because I still watch and I’m waiting for Laverne & Shirley and I’m waiting for CHiPS to come on.
Look at it here. Do you see this?
Do you want to know how much?
Probably retired. How many zeros?
It’s $0.01 for this residual.
They sent you a check for $0.01? It costs them more for that paper.
That’s probably for ChiPs, I don’t know. CHiPs is on MeTV. I did get a big residual for about 50 episodes or something. It’s on MeTV somewhere. MeTV made a corrupt deal, in my opinion. The Screen Actors Guild, I call the Union and says, “Why aren’t I getting residuals?” They’re like, “It’s a problem.” “I know. It’s a problem. That’s why I’m calling you. You’re the attorney and we’ve paid all these Union dues over the years. What’s the deal?” He’s like, “We’re working on it. It’s in the process.” It has been a long process. How do they show that show and not pay residuals? They called me and said, “Would you do some promotions for it?” “Are you nuts? Promote it for free? Do you want me to do the stunts too?”
You’re a marine, you can do it.
That’s right. “The big hands-on twelve and the little hand is on six. Come on, marine. It’s your turn.”
I remember we were at the Marriott. You ordered a glass of wine and I go, “You still get residual checks?” You’re like, “Yeah. That’s three checks to one glass of wine.” It’s not like when Friends get residual checks.Once you're a big star, they treat you badly, and they wish they were you. Click To Tweet
Don’t depend on it for your day job. I did try singing like every dumb actor does. That didn’t work out either. I did it on the Bob Hope Christmas Special and they said, “This is a Carol Bayer Sager song. You do realize that’s a big name?” I’m like, “I know,” and Larry Wilcox is singing this song, Me and My Love. When you go to my website at LarryWilcox.net, you can download and buy Me and My Love.
We’re getting it.
You’ve got to have it because you talk about some double-tracking to try to make it better. I go and see it on the Bob Hope Christmas Special and I had the right to approve or disapprove of the edit. Lip sync was hard in those days. I’d be saying, “Me and my love,” and Me and My Love would come out. There’s no sync here. They’re like, “That’s your fault, Larry. You weren’t following your own song. “Cut it. You can’t show this. It’s humiliating.” There went my singing career.
It might be revived because we’re going to post it. People are going to go on there and you’ll make more money. You can triple or quadruple that big check that you showed us.
They’ll be asking me on The Voice, I’m telling you. They’ll want me on The Voice.
We could make some calls.
Maybe you and Mark can duet. This one can’t sing. He thinks he’s a rock star. He grabs a mic and he thinks he can rock the song. He cannot hear a tune if his life depended on it. It’s so off-tune but he thinks he’s a rock star.
I am a better cowboy than a singer.
You’re not a cowboy either.
I got on the horse and that’s about it.
I always have this standing by, and by the second glass of wine my voice is perfect.
Next time, we’ll bring some wine and have you a couple of glasses so we can hear.
One of my sons, Ryan, he’s a good singer. My wife is a terrible singer. I’m probably medium terrible even though I would say I’m pretty good. He says to me, “Dad, you’re off-key. Come on.” I’m like, “No, I’m not. It’s perfect.” He’s like, “No, it isn’t. You need a tuning fork in your head.”
They don’t recognize good talent. Jealousy is jealousy, Larry.
Once you’re a big star they treat you bad and they wish they were you. They always wanted my motorcycle and those tight britches. They told me to get my uniform on. I got those tight britches on one leg. They won’t even go over my hips, let alone my body.
It’s like, “What was he, 120 pounds? When did he do CHiPS?
I prefer that you go into bodybuilding.
That’s right, and steroids.
What was your favorite CHiPS episode that you did?
When I directed them. I enjoyed directing. I did direct two of them. One was about motocross and another one was a tow truck movie. It’s about a guy who drag a chain behind his tow truck and would assault people or cars and so on. I enjoyed directing those and they had kids in them too. It was fine working with them. A fun one was when we did a rodeo sequence. I brought all my own horses, ropes and my buddies came and they got paid and we had fun. The rodeo was fun. Another was, we did one on jet skis. You’re getting paid to ride jet skis and we were riding.
I did my own stunts and Danny Rogers did them for Erik. We did our jet skis around The Queen Mary. We’re out past Queen Mary quite away because it was docked there, but it’s near there. We’re sitting on our jet skis back in the old days where you had to stand upon them. They were called the 440s. We’re sitting on the back of them and dangling and we look at each of ￼them. We got on our jet skis and we wouldn’t sit down anymore. We boogied around until the camera was ready. We’re out sitting there with our legs dangling.
Have you ever had that, when your feet is in the water and you hit the gas, you felt it?
Yeah, some people like to troll behind that thing, “This is great. These jets are wonderful.” They were interesting machines.
Weren’t you on another show as a celebrity guest for one of those crazy tug of wars and all of this stuff?
I did that a few years ago. Time goes by. They called me and said, “Larry, do you remember doing the Battle of the Network Stars and you’re one of the jocks?” I was like, “I did those and I can do the obstacle course well because I’m a Marine.” They’re like, “How are you these days?” I’m like, “What do you mean how am I?” They’re like, “Are you okay? I don’t know what your age is and everything but do you think you could compete with them?” “Of course, I could,” I said. They said, “You’ll sign a waiver in case you get injured.” I said, “No problem. I’m a Marine.”
My wife said, “What are the events?” I said, “I don’t know.” She says, “Why did you say yes?” I’m like, “What do you mean?” She’s like, “You’re going to be on national television. Are you sure you want to do this?” “What are you saying?” “What’s your waist, Larry?” “Don’t worry about it. I’ll get it down. It will be no problem.” They get the events and I look at the events. Basketball is one of them. I’m a good basketball player. Chad was laughing when I said that. I went down to the court every day and walked in and dribbled with both hands. I go to the basketball court. No one’s there because they’re all working. I’m down there and I do my form. Everything’s perfect. I dribble one hand and the other hand, and both hands. “Can you dribble both hands?” “Not so good but I’ll get back here in a minute.” The next day, “It’s still not coming but it will come.”
I go to the event and they say, “You’re going to compete against a comedian from Canada.” That’s all I remember. He shoots like the ‘50s with those two hands. He’s doing the bucket. I’m like, “Is this who I’m playing? It’s a slam dunk. Here’s how you’re supposed to shoot. Your hand has to go through, then you have to follow through the arch.” He missed the first three and I hit the first two. The corner shots were all three shots around the key. The dude beats me. I’m so bad, I don’t know. I missed eleven in a row or something. I’m looking at him saying, “Wow.”
The next thing comes. We have to throw the ball at that little teeny target and someone falls into the water. Erik grabs it and one guy falls. He says, “Don’t think about, just do it.” I miss three times in a row and you’re out. Now I’m looking like, “Maybe I shouldn’t have done this.” We get to the race. He’s like, “That’s going to be tomorrow morning. We’ll film that, Larry.” I go home and my wife is like, “How are you feeling?” I’m like, “I’m disappointed at myself in basketball. I’m good at basketball. I choked or whatever.”
She’s like, “Don’t worry.” She builds my ego back up. We go together the next day and she steps out in her glory and her beauty in great shape. Toby boy steps out, “Hi, I’m here again. Jon Baker 7, Mary 3. Where’s my motorcycle?” I walk over there and they say, “We want to interview you and your wife. Could you kiss your wife on the cheek?” I said, “I can do that.” Of course, they cut that all out. They tell my wife, “Why don’t you give Erik and Larry some instructions since you’re the Olympian?” She shows how to do this fast with your arms and call for the baton.
They have Erik in the first link and I’m the second link of the 400 or something. I’m running the 200, maybe 100, I don’t know. They go, “Ready, set, boom.” They shoot the gun and I start laughing. Erik is like, “What are you laughing about?” I’m like, “You look like a Chinaman shuffling along. I can’t even move to see this.” He’s like, “Shut up. You’re next and you’re going to be similar.” I said, “No, I’m not, watch it.” I don’t know the team we were competing in, so we ran into each other and fell down. I won my heat like nothing. I was like, “Speed, fast-twitch fibers are still there.” That was a big show. The Battle of the Network Stars. Where are they now? They should be in an old folks’ home.
Are you where they are now?
No. We then had the tug of war. I forgot about the big football player. He’s a nice guy. It’s sad, I don’t remember any names. They said, “You’re going to be the anchor on the tug of war.” Of course, I’m the anchor. They said, “Larry, you get down there and grind. We know you’ll grind like a Marine.” “No problem.” They go in and then, “Go.” I’m pulling the guys towards this way and I’m running the opposite way. You can only go maybe 6 inches and then you’re dead. It’s hard, the longer it is. It’s full tension on every muscle group. Your glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps and calves are dying. It’s like, “I’m going to get down on my knees and crawl and grunt like in the Marine Corps.” To make a long story short, we won. The next day, I’m in the chiropractor and he said, “Larry, you are on the verge of snapping your hamstrings. They’re tight. This is going to take a week.” “Get it fixed, please.” He said, “How was that track event and that tug of war?” I’m like, “No big deal.” The life and times of a movie star.
Next time you should be on Dancing with the Stars.
We’ll get you on Dancing with the Stars.
They’ve tried. Many people told me, “You’ve got to do Dancing with the Stars.” “I’m not doing Dancing with the Stars. I made an ass of myself almost in front of millions of people singing. I’m not going to do Dancing with the Stars. My ego is gone. You could not pay me to do Dancing with the Stars.” I did an episode as a guest star with Alec Baldwin in New York. It’s a cute scene with a girl that was a co-star, a comedian, she’s good. Alec Baldwin says at the end of my scene, “Maybe we can get him on Dancing with the Stars in a television episode.” I was like, “Don’t say that, please.” I can imagine myself in this little outfit with my shirt unbuttoned and then scaring people to hell, “What is this, a horror movie?”
Marlene would coach you from the side.
She would be coaching me and laughing. My boys would be rolling in there, “Dad, what are you doing? You lost it. Your days are over, stop.”
It’s great to see you and talk to you.
I know you’re busy doing that a lot.
Let’s keep going, shall we? We’ll talk another couple of hours until my agent calls.
I’m not going on until 2021. Someone said, “What are you doing next?” I said, “Nothing.” “Are you available?” “Yup.”
“How about Wednesday?” “I’m available.” “Sorry, we’ve got to do it on Friday.” “I’m available.” “How about Monday?” “I’m available.”
“What month?” “Every.” “What have you got going on?” “Nothing.”
“How’s this year going?” “Good. I’m open.”
“What do you charge?” “Anything.”
“What’s your budget?”
“I shouldn’t ask your budget but I’ll take it.” “You have to make sure it’s bigger than Larry’s last check.”
If I’d give that as a tip to someone, they’ll probably slap me.
I’m sure you have many more stories to tell us. We’ll probably have to bring you back because I’m sure people are going to be like, “He can tell us more stories.”
We can’t get anybody else to come on.
At least you’re up to the A-team. You’ve got the A-team. You can’t go any higher than this. This is CHiPs. Do you want me to sing the song? When I go on a vacation, I sing that in case they don’t recognize me, “Can I have a good table?”
Your van has a picture of you, Larry Wilcox.
They sit me next to the latrine, every time. I don’t get it. Maybe it’s the way I sing the song, it must be that. My two little boys when they were little, we were in Hawaii once. I don’t know why I made them do it. I had taken them on the set when we did CHiPs ‘99, a reunion movie for CHiPs. They were little boys and happy that their dad was in that and all. They had gone to Toys “R” Us and bought me and they were proud of that. I still have them on my pedestal behind my bed somewhere. I remind them, “That was you.” They were whistling the CHiPs theme and that’s when people recognize me. I said, “You can’t do that. Don’t whistle. It’s embarrassing.” “Poor guy, he’s teaching his kids to whistle the CHiPs theme. What’s wrong with him? I bet he wears that same browns to bed at night with his helmet on.”
You tell them, “Go to the front and say, ‘Is my dad Larry Wilcox from CHiPs in the store?’” Make them announce like they’re lost.
It’s funny when your agent or your public relations manager used to call to make reservations, “I’m calling for Mr. Wilcox, the star of the television show CHiPs. He’s going to be flying in there for a personal appearance.” Now it’s like, “Is this such and such hotel?” “Yes.” “This is Larry Wilcox. I’m calling.” “Yes, who?” “You don’t know do you?” “We don’t.” It’s a twenty-year-old girl. She doesn’t know. It was a long time ago. It’s the ‘70s, did you forget? What is wrong with you? You probably shouldn’t be talking to her at all.
You did your own stunts.
Now you do your own reservations.
My own reservations and my whole laundry. You name it.
You had come full circle. It’s where you started.
“Let me see your jump shot. Can you jump?” “I don’t want to try it now, but yeah.”
It’s not a good day for that jump shot.
I’m pretty close to pulling my hamstrings so I called in my doctor.
Get my chiro here and I’ll do it.
At least you beat those women in tug of war and that’s what matters.When you talk with someone who is truly fully humble, you’ll appreciate it. Click To Tweet
The men against the women and the men lost. I knew I shouldn’t have gone to the Marine Corps. I should have joined the Coast Guard and the Navy. What was wrong with me?
We’ll have to bring you back. That’s it. We’ll have to do another day with you and we can share some more of your funny stories. I’m sure everybody would love to have you back, we would.
All eight of them.
I boosted you up from four. That’s a 50% increase. That’s what we call an influencer. If you bring Larry Wilcox on, he’ll boost you up 50%.”
You’re bringing our numbers up.
We’ll definitely have to have another day with you. I’m sure you have more stories. We’d love to hear more about your kids. We were lucky enough to meet Chad and got to hang out with him. He is a great kid and fun. We enjoyed having him. I know he was here by himself with his friends, coming over here and having dinner with us and sitting around and talking. He enjoyed that.
Thank you. You’re kind to Chad and I’m grateful. I’ll go to Texas and see him and stuff. He’s all Texan and he loves Texas.
What part of Texas is he in?
We’ll be there. We’ll have to call him.
He’s the big boy in Dallas. He has a cool apartment up on the 40th floor or something that overlooks Dallas with all the glass windows. Every time I see him, he’s at some pool party and stuff. I said, “You’re having a hard life.”
You remember those days.
Be careful. He’s doing well. He works for a neat company, Gartner. They consult big companies. I was thinking, there’s a tech group on the weekends. Every Saturday they do a Zoom meeting and it’s called METAL. They had a hypnotist on there or something and I was telling them about you. They should have you on there. Supposedly, I wasn’t in that episode. I didn’t listen to it. I just listen like a spectator. They have a lot of following all over the world. It might be a good exposure for you to look into it, METAL.
I’ll do it.
We have somebody saying that you should be on stage. You would give blue-collar comedy a run for their money.
My mom, she says the weirdest things.
I have a bunch of stories for blue-collar. I used to work as a telegrapher on the Union Pacific Railroad and big cities like Bitter Creek, Wyoming, and Evanston, Wyoming where you’d go to the insane asylum and walk down those caves and those little shutters. You’d open and look into and close them. What you saw, you didn’t want to see. I have some blue-collar comedy on that stuff.
We’re going to have you back so you could tell us some more.
When no one shows up we’ll blame it on social distancing.
You should ask actors what their job was before they became “celebrities.” Another one was I work for GTE Telephone. I was a cable splicer. You climb up those poles. We had to learn how to climb. I hated doing that. You go high. We got a truck with a boom and you go up there. You usually go down the alleys from one pole to the other. What you see from that boom, we saw some scary stuff. It’s like, “Do you want us to see this?” We got our hard hats on.
I need to get a boom truck. “I’m just checking the wires, ma’am.”
For a young man on a boom truck, it was not good, “I’ve got to go for a while. I’ll see you later.”
Thank you for spending this time with us and sharing your stories and making us laugh. That’s what this is all about.
We’ll send that residual check.
If you need a loan, let me know. The interest is low. I’ll see you guys.
Go to LarryWilcox.net and download his song.
First, listen to the song and download it.
We’ve known Larry for a few years and he’s always like that. No matter where he goes, he’s always like that. He did show up in short pants to the Secret Knock. Everybody was there from Mary Ann from Gilligan’s Island was there, all these celebrities were there.
You told him to show up, he showed up.
This is Larry. He obviously ran out of time. He didn’t have time to change. He was excited that he wanted to get down there right away. It was a blast. He’s always fun to hang out with. He’s like that all the time. We’ll have to have him on again. Share this blog.
We are glad that he was able to sit with us for an hour, considering he was busy. I appreciate that Mark got him to come on and chat with us. He kept asking, “What are we going to talk about? What’s the theme?” I’m like, “There is no theme. We go with it. We go with the flow. We talk about whatever. It’s a conversation. It’s information. If you’ve got something to share with the audience, that’s great.” It’s mostly to sit there, talk, and listen to someone who is truly humble. We appreciate the fact that he asked Mark to coach his son. He went and we not only coached him, but we invited him into our home. We made him feel at home because he was here by himself. He had his school friends, but I’m talking of family and so forth. He’s grateful that we did that. He appreciates it. He always thanks us.
Whenever we ask him, “Do you want to come over for dinner?” He’ll go, “Yeah.” “Are you not eating dinner at your apartment?” “No, TV dinner and stuff.” “Come on over.”
A home-cooked meal is better than a frozen TV dinner.
“I’ll eat fire but I’m getting a home-cooked meal.”
He’s a humble person. I’m talking about Larry.
You see how he is. That’s how he is all the time.
When we first met him, that’s how he talked to us. We were meeting him and that’s exactly how he is. We appreciate that he took the time to come here for us.
Go to LarryWilcox.net and download his song. If you want to check out our videos, go to our videos. We’ve got videos coming on.
Check them out and watch them. We should get Michael Nitti on. Michael Nitti is our coach. He’s one of our dear friends, Michael Nitti and Tony Robbins, for years. Michael taught me and coached me a bunch of times. If you see the TV show Billions, it reminds me of Michael. If you look at the character Wendy, the character was done after Michael Nitti’s coaching. Some of it was word for word. He coaches. He was the producer and director of Billions. Imagine having a coach like that where he coaches all the billionaires and all that. That’s who we’re bringing on next. He comes over all the time.
Julie was saying, “Mark, give Yolanda a quarantine haircut.” Mark will not be touching this hair. No one will but my hairdresser. If I have to wait until 2021, I’ll have long hair.
That’s the way it is. Comment on this blog and we’ll comment back. If you liked it, share it. Thank you for reading. I doubled my fan base. I started at 8,137.
I’m surprised you haven’t tripled it.
We’re up to over 16,000. Like my fan page and get your friends there too.
Hypnotist Mark is your Facebook page.
I probably have more fans than I do on my Facebook page.
Hypnotize Me Mark is the website. Thank you for joining us. We will see you next time with another great and special guest. Have a great day.
Share this and comment. Take care and be safe out there.
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