Episode 132- Actor Ted Lange

Anyone who knows us knows that we are all about setting a course for adventure. Heidi’s dog/canine stalker is named Captain, after all. And naming something then self-actualizes it — we learned that lesson from “Beetlejuice” and “Candyman.” Also from that time Luke said “Bloody Mary” into a mirror several times when he was a reckless teen. (Lucky for him, she chose to predict the future that night instead of wreaking vengeance, and she foretold of a great podcast interview for early March of 2021.)

What better way is there to find something exciting and new, once we’re all vaccinated and the world gets an all-clear, than to travel? Picture it: You’ve been cooped up in your house/apartment/yurt/abandoned mall for just about a year now. Wouldn’t a trip on the high seas be perfect? The sun caresses your suffering-from-a-vitamin-D-deficiency skin.  The salt spray brings much-needed volume to your lackluster locks. The sound of other people nearby startles the hell out of you. And the friendly bartender sends you a craft cocktail that is far more nuanced and delicious than the Nyquil and rum concoction you’ve been trying to perfect for the past year.

For this week’s episode we spoke with Ted Lange, the man responsible for dispensing drinks and advice from 1977 to 1986 as Isaac Washington on “The Love Boat.” Before Kathie Lee sang about Carnival Cruises, before Disney trapped you on a boat with thousands of kids and people dressed up in weird costumes (and we’re talking about the parents, not the cruise line employees), before entire boatloads of people got sick off the salad bar on the Lido Deck, there was “The Love Boat.” Each week, three sets of couples found love for the first time, fell back in love, or otherwise had a major epiphany about what to do with their lives. Occasionally they were helped by Charo, but the biggest helping hands came from the crew of the Pacific Princess.

While we’re apt to get carried away talking to Ted about “The Love Boat” (okay, make that “Heidi could have talked with Ted for several more hours about “The Love Boat”), we’d also like to note that he is not just an accomplished actor with many other notable stage and screen credits to his name — Ted is also a director and a writer. He spoke with us about how he got his start in show business and who he met along the way. From seeing his name in the show credits to getting paid to travel to Mexico to suggesting former classmates as guest stars on “The Love Boat,” Ted painted a vivid picture of his career. (We’re not going to tell you which former classmates, but you’re going to be so excited you’ll jump once you listen to the episode and find out…)

One of the things “The Love Boat” was best known for was all its fabulous guest stars each week. Ted interacted with them all and took whatever lessons they were willing to give. He told us about how he loved to spend time with actors from old movies and early TV and get stories from them. And Ted definitely believes in passing it on because he shared some great tidbits with us! Among many other things, he shared with us why the drinks he served on the show didn’t have any alcohol, how he had to be an advocate for himself on set, how the cast could tell which guest stars were used to working on a toxic set, and how the cast of “The Love Boat” supported each other — and continues to do so even now.

Be sure to tune in to hear about what Ted is up to now. You may not be able to go on a cruise yet, but Ted’s friendliness, upbeat attitude, and all-around good vibe will be just the dose of vitamin D you need until the Pacific Princess is visiting ports of call again. So set out a deck chair in your living room, put on your sunglasses, pour yourself a nice drink (no more Nyquil and rum), and enjoy the best Ted Talk out there. It’s an open smile on a friendly shore!

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