Family & Friends Home
The Lloyd King Story
By Ron Robbins,
edited by Frank Perry
©2009 All rights reserved
Lloyd was sitting
in Paul Chadwick's office being briefed on the events of the last three weeks.
Paul had a pad full of notes and comments for Lloyd.
"Well, that about
covers everything," Paul said. "You should have come to me for help, Lloyd. I
never realized how much of the load you were carrying. I've decided to loan you
two of my top production managers until you hire a couple of men to replace
might mention to any new hires that they can count on keeping their jobs after
the Telecom project is over. We have several theatrical projects on the drawing
board that should be ready for production next year."
on getting Telecom to extend the contract for another year," Paul said. "We are
pleased at the great job you are doing. Now don't go pushing yourself so hard
again; and hire some more people to help you out. We can't afford to lose our
"Thanks for your
kind words. I appreciate your stepping in; I know you have a lot on your plate
Paul said. "Glad I could help you out, keep up the good work."
Lloyd had called
Randy at home before the meeting with Paul and asked him to drop by his office
and fill out an employment application. He was calling a production meeting and
he wanted him to sit in.
After his meeting
with Paul he stopped at his office, picked up his notes and led Randy to the
theater. His entire staff was too large to fit in the conference room so they
had elected to hold the conference in the theater. In attendance were the twenty
department heads, their assistants, his Production Supervisor, and senior
Production managers. Lloyd sat in the center of the large table that had been
set up on the stage. Seated next to Lloyd were Jim White, and his four
production managers. He had Randy seated to his right.
ladies and gentlemen," Lloyd said. "Before we begin, I want to introduce Randy
Cavanaugh, my executive assistant. Randy is new to this game but a wiz at
administration and budgeting. I want you to cooperate with him and help him as
much as possible.
"I've just left
the boss's office and he has given me a pad full of notes. I'm also putting out
a call for production managers. If any one of you feels you are ready to move
into that slot, come and speak to me after the meeting. I'm asking all of you to
let it be known that we have openings for five more assistant production
managers. The list of positions will be posted on the bulletin board this
"Now, I want a
damage control report starting with the worst disasters then working down to the
"I've read the
production reports and I know why you're ready to draw blood," Lloyd said. "Look
my friends, we are all in this together and we've got to work together for the
good of the project. I'm determined to get everything back on an even keel. This
project is a damn mess right now, so let's fix it.
"I'll level with
you; I'm really not ready to return to work. My doctor thinks I need another two
weeks to recover. I came back sooner because Paul said this project has gone to
hell in a hand basket. Now I don't intend to let our client down, and we have a
lot of people depending on us. We are all professionals here and I want you to
put the last three weeks behind us and start over again.
"With that in
mind let's begin to get this project back on track."
department head made their report Lloyd had the overall picture of what he was
up against. He switched the remote crews around to cover the productions that
were bogged down. He authorized the hiring of several local production companies
to handle several of his productions. One-by-one the production groups problems
were solved. By the time he finished with the last manager, the room was empty.
Lloyd returned to
his office and dictated his list of job descriptions and had them distributed
throughout the organization. He had the Personnel Manager publish the openings
in the three newspapers.
He called in Jim
White, his senior Production Supervisor on the Telecom project. Jim walked into
his office a few minutes later.
"Jim, close the
door. You've met Randy already," Lloyd said. "Nothing we say in this room is to
be repeated. Correct me if I'm wrong Jim, but let me lay it out for you from my
perspective. Paul couldn't help tinker with the schedules and had to change
things around to save money right? I saw a lot of angry faces in that meeting
this morning. There's not a damn thing I can say that will change, or mitigate
the damage that has been done. All I can do is to ask them for their cooperation
and to put everything back together again. For the rest of the day I'm going try
and smooth a lot of ruffled feathers. What I said in the meeting was true; the
doctor said I really needed at least two more weeks of R&R. I came back because
I couldn't let you guys down. If these teams can hold together, I'm sure Telecom
will put in a good word for them to the next company."
about Paul screwing things up," Jim said. "By last Thursday night I had a mutiny
on my hands. All five group leaders called in sick on Friday. Telecom called
Paul on Friday and wanted to know what the hell was going on. That's when Paul
tried to reach you. He was pissed when he got nowhere with your houseman. Paul
came to me and pleaded with me to try and reach you and explain how bad the
situation was. Believe me, it wasn't for Paul's sake that I called you, it's
because he was trashing your project."
"Thanks for your
help Jim. I've scheduled another meeting for tomorrow afternoon. My plan is to
make the rounds today and have a chat with each manager. Now, I would like you
to work with Randy today and teach him the ropes. I can't think of a better
get you everywhere," Jim said. "You heard the boss Randy, let's go."
"I would like for
you to try to be back here by six o'clock Randy." Lloyd said.
afternoon Jim took Randy over to one of the sound stages to check on the sets
for the next day's shoot.
"There's a lot to
learn about this job," Randy said. "I never realized how complex everything is."
"We need to check
up on all these little details," Jim said. The actual shoot tomorrow will cost
twenty thousand dollars. If the set is not perfect by early tomorrow morning the
costs could continue to grow."
"How do you rate
Lloyd as a boss?"
"He's the best in
the business. There's not a person on this project who doesn't respect him. He's
tough, yet absolutely fair with his people. He treats everyone with respect and
I've never heard him raise his voice to anyone. One thing for sure, he'll go to
bat for his people and they know that. He works harder and longer than any other
person in this company and always has time to listen to your problems. Nine
times out of ten he can usually help you find the solution. He knows this
business better than anyone here and can step into any job and handle it. I've
been in this business a long time and worked for them all. Lloyd is the best
boss I've ever worked for. He could walk into any production company tomorrow
and name his price. This company is screwing him. You know what Lloyd's trouble
is? He's too darn loyal to the Chadwicks. He thinks he owes them because they
gave him a job and helped him out when he first started with the company. Now he
feels that he owes Paul for letting him run this project.
"Hell, any other
guy would have walked after the first six months, me included. Lloyd is the only
administrator in this organization that's capable of handling this project. The
Chadwicks are making a huge profit on this contract. You saw what happened the
first time old Paul got his hands on the project? No only did Telecom get angry,
they were about to slap him with a non-performance penalty. That was enough to
get Paul's attention. He had no choice but to get Lloyd back here. Good old'
Lloyd will save Paul's hide once again. If it were me, I'd let that stupid
bastard Paul fall on his face. I like Lloyd and I'm really concerned about his
health. He doesn't look well. I've tried talking some sense to him, but he
always comes back with his dedication to the project and his contract with the
Chadwicks. That's the kind of man you're working for. Stick with him and you'll
learn something, if he doesn't drop dead from overwork.
"Don't mind me;
I'm only blowing off steam. We all get caught up in a job sometimes. It can
become frustrating when you change horses in the middle of the stream. That's
what happened here. Paul Chadwick is not a bad sort really; he is too hung up on
cutting corners to be a good manager. Lloyd on the other hand is a creative
administrator, therein lays the tale."
"Thanks for the
insight" Randy said. "Tell me, what do you think of Eric Von Hoven, your
"Good man, he
knows his business, very creative. Eric can come up with some damn good
concepts, but he's a loose cannon and like most creative types, very difficult
to control. You've got to keep a tight reign on his spending. If the budget
calls for a Ford he'll go for the Cadillac every time. Why do you ask?"
"I overheard him
raising a ruckus with a couple of the group leaders. He wanted to know why his
ideas were changed on the media mix on the Auto convention, something about not
following his concept."
of Eric," Jim said. "He'll fight for his ideas. Sometimes he even wins. He hates
Paul Chadwick with a passion and the feeling is mutual. If Lloyd leaves, Eric
will be out on his ear. You're going to see a lot of people leaving when this
project is over. I had to laugh about the comment Paul made about there being a
job for everyone after this project is over. There will be an exodus from this
place when Lloyd steps down. I've told Lloyd he's got to move on when this
project is over. Most people here only work for Paul Chadwick when they're
desperate. Paul is an autocrat and you can't make a move without his approval.
He can't hold on to the creative people."
"Lloyd on the
other hand delegates authority wherever he can. He's hand picked his people for
this project and they are good. They wouldn't stay under Paul. All that crap
about Paul giving to us two seasoned production supervisors is a joke. Those two
guys he's giving us never had an original thought in their head. They're Paul's
kind of yes men. It's really sad when you think about it. Don't let me
disillusion you about Chadwick. It's still a good company and a good training
ground. Work hard and learn as much as you can, then make your move when you're
"Well it's six
o'clock, you better check in with the boss. I'll see you in the morning to take
you around and introduce you to the other departments, unless Lloyd needs you
for something else."
When he returned
to Lloyd's office, there were two group leaders with him. Lloyd waved him in and
pointed to a chair. The meeting finally broke up at seven.
expecting us home for dinner by eight. I thought we could walk home tonight,"
Lloyd said as they walked out of the building.
"I'm having lunch
with Dad on Wednesday," Randy said. "He sends his warmest regards sealed with a
kiss which I'll save for later. I don't think Fifth Avenue is the right place
for that. How do you feel?"
"A little tired,
but that's normal for a Monday. It's been a rough day. Thank God, no one quit
today. I think I've talked everyone into staying. How did you like your first
day at Chadwick's?"
interesting, I've learned a lot about you," Randy said. "You're quite a guy and
your people respect you. I was impressed when you addressed the troops at the
morning meeting. What a change from the cuddly guy I hold in my arms every
night. I was very proud of you today, baby. This is a fascinating business. It's
easy to see how you can become caught up in the glamour of the industry. Tell
me, how are your two seasoned production managers working out?"
"Just fine, I
sent them back to Paul with my blessings. I've talked to three freelance
production managers from the West Coast. If they are as good as they sound, I'm
going to hire them on the spot.
"Your talk last
week opened my eyes to a lot of things. Sometimes my blindness to the Chadwick's
has caused me a lot of grief. From now on I'm going to listen to your good
advice. I'm glad we spent the last three weeks away from everyone. It gave me
the opportunity to put everything in perspective. I was so wrapped up in work; I
lost sight of my priorities. I meant what I told you last week, you are my
number one concern, and everything takes second place.
"Today I forced
myself to look at this entire project objectively; from my morning meeting with
Paul, to my last conference this evening. I've concluded that all the energy and
hard work I've spent building an efficient organization has meant absolutely
nothing to my employer. In three short weeks, Paul almost succeeded in derailing
the entire project. I finally succeeded in convincing my two best managers to
stick with me. You walked into the tail end of that meeting tonight."
"If you had not
forced me to stop, I would still be pushing myself to the limit. Do you know
that was my first vacation in over two years? If nothing else, I've learned an
important lesson about people, they rarely change. Paul ran true to form and
will never change. I've had it with the Chadwicks. Although I'll still honor my
obligation and see the Telecom contract to the finish, after I've hired my new
staff I plan to cut back on my hours. I'm not working eighty hours a week any
longer. If the Chadwicks interfere with the project again, I'll resign and let
them run it."
"Thank God you've
come to your senses," Randy said. "I thought I was going to have to kidnap you
been a prince. Don't think I don't feel guilty neglecting you the way I have
been lately. That will never happen again. I've been stupid to allow that to
happen. I love you Randy and I will do anything for you, all you have to do is
ask, always remember that," Lloyd said. "You mean more to me than anything in
• • • • • • • • • •
Randy Senior and
Lloyd were having lunch at the Four Seasons Restaurant. "You look much healthier
today, a great improvement over the last time I saw you," Randy Senior said. "I
must confess I was worried about you."
"Thank you; I
really appreciate your concern about me. I'm only sorry I missed so many of our
lunch dates," Lloyd said. "This is really the first opportunity I've had to
thank you for your generous offer to finance Randy and me in a new business.
You'll never know how much this means to us. He is lucky to have a father like
you. Randy is a dynamo of energy. He's working his tail off to pull this all
together. He loves every minute of it and has really taken hold of this new
venture. He is a take charge kind of guy."
"Would you mind
answering a question that has been bothering me for some time?" Senior asked. "I
feel we're close enough that you wouldn't be offended if I asked you a few
questions about your life style. If you don't want to answer, I'll understand."
"Ask away. I'll
be happy to answer any question that pertains directly to me."
"Fair enough, let
me preface my questions by saying that I know very little about homosexuals.
This is not a subject I feel comfortable discussing with Randy. Are you
attracted to all males, or only certain males? Lloyd thought for several seconds
before answering. "This must be difficult for you as a parent. It must have come
as a shock to you when Randy admitted he was a homosexual. I can't even imagine
what must have gone through your mind when he told you he had a spouse.
Personally, I think I would have found that difficult to accept. Heck, it was
difficult for me to accept. It's not an easy thing to live through. By rights,
you should be having lunch with Randy's wife, not his lover.
"In answer to
your question, I must admit that I know very little about the gay community at
large. My knowledge is limited to reading books on the subject, attending
lectures and my association with my small circle of gay friends. All the sexual
experiences I have had were with heterosexual and bisexual men. There are a
large number of gay men in our society that you never hear about. The public at
large only sees the tip of the iceberg. The gay men we see, or hear about, are
in the most vocal groups and the most obvious gay men. I'm referring to the
effeminate men, or the leather crowd, or the groups you see marching on
Gay-Pride day. The majority of the gay population is like Randy and me. The gay
population figure most often mentioned is 10-percent. That figure seems low to
me. My guess is the figure is much higher. One year I would like to see the
government circulate a simple questionnaire passed out to every junior in high
school, and every senior in college, to learn if their gay, or if they suspect
they may be a gay. I'm convinced you would find that the numbers would be much
greater then we think.
"Randy is the
only man I have ever loved and we have a monogamous relationship. This is not to
say I have not had my fair share of sex over the years. Of course I would be
angry if another man made a pass at me. I've lived my whole life up to this
point as a heterosexual. To this day, I still think that way. I'm still
uncomfortable with the stigma of being labeled as homosexual, even though I have
little choice in the matter. That's the way I was born. Randy and I will always
face that stigma and there's nothing much we can do about it. All we can hope
for is to be allowed to live our lives without any interference from those
people that think we can change our orientation.
man would never choose to be a homosexual. We will never be truly accepted by
the majority of society. Even my own religion is against me. Don't think that
doesn't hurt, but I'm sure God loves Randy and me just as much as he does any
other human being in his flock. I become angry at times when I think of the
countless number of people who hate us because we are gay. To me that is so
wrong. I have heard people say they hope the AIDS virus kills all the gays of
the world. That's the kind of hate that's out there. Our so called Christian
leaders should be ashamed of themselves to condemn homosexuals. It is
unthinkable to believe a homosexual really wants to be that way, or that he can
"I'm sorry that I
got off on a tangent, but sometimes it's difficult to remain aloof to these
disparages. Before I close the subject, I would like to say that if God gave me
the choice this minute to become straight, in return for giving up Randy, I
would remain a homosexual in spite of everything I will face tomorrow. Randy and
I believe that God has given us each other and we are happy together."
your sharing that with me, Lloyd. You're a fine young man and you have become
like another son to me. I will always be grateful to you for what you have done
for Randy. He has found himself and I've never seen him happier. I've accepted
the fact that he is a homosexual, and I don't feel depressed, or guilty about
that. Randy is my son and I love him. I want him to be happy in whatever life
style he has chosen.
"His marriage to
Dotty was a disaster and almost killed him. As much as I was opposed to that
marriage I didn't interfere. Again, it was Randy's life and I wanted
grandchildren. I suspected something was very wrong with that relationship from
the very beginning. After their breakup, I suspected there was something much
deeper bothering Randy; it was more than just his divorce.
"Randy and Curtis
had a special bond between them from the beginning. They were wonderful boys and
competitive as siblings are, but they were never mean-spirited. It was a healthy
relationship, up to a point. That point was when they began sleeping together. I
felt they were experimenting with sex and I didn't interfere. I let it run its
course. In time they did grow out of that and went their separate ways. At least
that's what I thought.
"It was Curtis'
death that triggered the beginning of Randy's mental breakdown. He blamed
himself for that death. The breakup of his marriage didn't help, but I knew it
was not the root cause of Randy's breakdown. It would have killed me if I lost
Randy. It took over two years in a sanatorium to bring him back to the living,
then six more months of intensive therapy.
wife and I will never get over Curtis' death. He was a unique man and I miss him
to this day. Curtis had a brilliant mind and was a fine lawyer. He was being
groomed to take over the firm. His death was like a knife in my heart. It was a
terribly wasted life of a fine young man.
"Randy is all we
have left and I don't want to lose him. I pray that you will stay with him and
keep him on the right path. If you do this, I will see that no harm ever comes
to you, or Randy."
Lloyd's voice was
heavy when he spoke again, "Please don't say any more because I'll start
bawling. I feel deeply touched by your sincerity. Randy is the most important
person in my life and I can assure you that I have every intention of making him
happy. Randy is not only my spouse, but he is my best friend as well. We need
each other, and we have a healthy relationship. We're going to make it, Mr.
Cavanaugh, because we both want it to work.
about having grandchildren, because Randy and I will be starting a family within
a year. He doesn't know it yet, but that's my plan. Randy will make a wonderful
father and he needs an outlet for his boundless energy. Someone has to take care
of us in our old age. At least you and mom will have us around to take care of
wonderful, Lloyd, but don't you think it will be tough for a gay couple to adopt
"We will not be
adopting. These children will be our own. One of my very good friends is a
doctor and he has already begun the search for surrogate mothers to bear our
children. It may happen sooner, but Dr. Purdy already has six candidates that he
feels look promising. He'll know better after his detectives complete their
investigation. This is a long, tedious process that will take several months
before we know for sure. It is also very expensive. Promise me you won't say a
word to Randy, until I tell him first. Randy likes to make all the major
decisions in our marriage. He takes his duties as head of the family very
seriously. He's damn good at it and I want to keep it that way."
chuckled, "You're very clever. Are you sure you wouldn't like to go to law
school and take over my firm?"
"What, and leave
Randy all alone to run the company and take care of the children too? Not on
your life. Knowing Randy as I do, he'll insist that we spend a lot of quality
time with the children. But while they're babies there's no reason why they
can't live with us in the duplex. After they learn to walk, I think we'll move
to Waterview. I want to spend as much time as we can with the children. As you
know, we only have them for eighteen years. After that they're off to college
and on their own. I want to make the most of those years. I know Randy will feel
the same way."
Lloyd smiled, "I
can't believe I said that, you've already raised two children. Forgive me, Dad,
we've become so close I forget sometimes you're Randy's father."
"I take that as a
compliment, Lloyd. I'm glad you feel that way. I want to be your friend above
anything else. Don't feel that I'm some old guy who's lost touch with what's
happening in your world."
"Thanks, Dad, I'm
not going to say anything to Randy about this until I've found the right
mothers. He has enough on his plate right now. But there will be no holding him
down once he knows he's going to be a father. I know Randy and I will make good
parents. I'm sure Mister Wonderful will take it all in his stride. Randy is not
happy unless he organizing and planning our future. As I said before, I don't
plan to discourage him. At this point all I want is to do is to channel his
boundless energies in the right direction. He needs children to make his life
complete, he has so much love to give."
"This has been
the most uplifting afternoon I've had in a long time, Lloyd. You have given me
something to look forward to. I never thought I would ever have grandchildren. I
hope to be hearing some good news from Randy in the near future. Just out of
curiosity, how many children do you plan to have?"
"If it doesn't put Randy out of shape, I was planning on six children."
♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦
To be continued
♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦