Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Catch Me If You Can #pezoutlaw #hollywood

I'm Pez Outlaw n this is my story.

The History of Pez is a complete snooze fest without the Pez Outlaw story.
The 1st known photo of Pez Outlaw

current photo of Pez Outlaw at the Asylum

My focus with Pez Outlaw now is to let him be every-mans story.
One that the reader can identify with.

The heartache, struggle n possible success you can achieve in life.

The struggle not to submit.
Fighting back with what remains.
Days without purpose, knowledge that time is running out.
The will to continue in isolation of belief.

I can't help but think with a good ghost writer, proper packaging n broader presentation the Pez Outlaw story is perfect for our times.

The Pez Outlaw story would easily be related to by that very middle class n poor. 
Those who also find themselves victims of today's new normal.
College degrees without jobs, flipping burgers to get by.

The crush we all felt from the collapse of 2008.
You got college loans, I got $250,000.00 of debt from the college of Pez.
Your pain started in 2008, mine started a decade before that.
Pez Outlaw represents every-man n our desire to achieve the American dream.

Now I wait in the Asylum, self-imposed exile.
Hoping to regain my sanity, a ticket back to reality.
A second chance.
Maybe Today n if not, Maybe Tomorrow?

Pez Outlaw Diary covers the character of Pez Outlaw from 1994 - 2003.
Notes From The Asylum covers Pez Outlaw from 2003 - 2017.  

Most of the stories you've heard or read about Pez Outlaw are true, not all but most.
Truthfully most of it's so bizarre, nobody would believe you if you made it up.
Sometimes in the middle of offhandedly telling parts of the Pez Outlaw story to someone unaware I catch the look in there eyes or expression on there face.
At that moment I realize exactly how unbelievable n crazy the Pez Outlaw story truly is.

The Golden age of Pez was from 1950s to 1989.
The Golden age of collecting pez though was the 1990s, which is a completely different thing.
The reason I say this isn't only because the 1990s was the era of Pez Outlaw.

The 1990s was that magic moment in the history of collecting Pez.
As a dealer you could easily reach back a decade for product.
1980s was kinda easy.
1970s a good degree more difficult but not impossible.

It was the time when I was able to gin up the enthusiasm of a hobby that had been moving at a snails pace for decades.
With the increased interest people started hunting for n finding sizable amounts of older no-feet product, which fed the enthusiasm even more.

Another reason that the 1990s was the golden age of Pez collecting is that there was a known achievable Universe of Pez to collect.
In the 1990s there were approx 1,000? known Pez Dispensers, unlike today where I'd estimate that Universe of Pez to have tripled, especially if you consider all the variations. 

If anyone has the stats of the known Universe of Pez dispensers including all variations at the moment?
Please provide the # for this post.
Also if you can come up withe that same exact known universe of Pez dispensers in 1999, I'd appreciate that # also.

some stats
In my years as Pez Outlaw I bought n sold well over 2 Million Pez Dispensers.
I earned $30,000.00 in one weekend at 1 Pez Convention.
My best day of sales Mail order was $15,000.00 in 1 freaking day.
In my Pez Outlaw Decade I earned 4.5 Million Dollars.
I traveled to Europe in excess of 70 times in 1 decade, + Australia n South Africa.
Pez Outlaw created The California Pez Convention n immediately GAVE IT AWAY.

In the 1990s a major cable channel contacted Pez Outlaw thinking I was Pez Corporation. 
I can't stress the significance of that n that it happened because my activities were so big at that time that they would get that confused.

Secrets #pezoutlaw #hollywood
I'm Pez Outlaw n this is my story.
Every day I get up, have breakfast n think Maybe Today
I get some good news on Pez Outlaw. 

The Pez Outlaw story takes place in the 1990s and involves my conflict with Pez Corporation. A decade that was the happiest time of my life.

It's been almost 18 years since I received the news that changed the direction of my life and the story of Pez Outlaw began.

In 1997-1998 I made a fateful decision to invest 1/2 million dollars in Pez. Half was old stock, half was product I designed.

In late 1998 I received the news that Pez USA was going to copy everything that I had designed n bought from Pez Europe.

My biggest regret is deciding to buy that 1/2 million dollars worth of Pez Product.
The irony is that without that choice I never would have entered this phase of my life.
The pain and failure of that decision created the Pez Outlaw story. 
Had everything gone as planned I never would have written Pez Outlaw Diary. 
Pez Outlaw Diary only exists because I needed a way to understand and process the rise n fall of Pez Outlaw. 

Spies, Black Market Deals, Smuggling n Bribery. 
10 Years Nobody Could Catch Me. 

Gun Towers, Armed Guard Check Points, Military Equipment on Tarmacs at Airports n Hookers almost everywhere you turned. FYI the Hookers were anything but shy. Five or six on the roadside as you drove by, one out of five would be flashing you, lifting her shirt as an invite. At a roadside food-stand one Hooker was wearing, we'll call them trousers, so sheer that she might as well have been wearing nothing. Add to that the always present groups of Gypsies
n bubba you got a story. 

Ex KGB Resorts. This place was actually pretty cool in a KGB sorta way. At the center of everything was this old looking glass enclosed swimming pool with a brick changing room attached, surround by wooden cabins for rooms. Lockers the whole bit. It was the pool that was the big deal. The pool was fed by a hot sulfur spring, so you swam in hot sulfur water. Of course we tried it. It was a very unique experience and as we were lost when we found it, I could not tell you for the life of me where it was. A lot of these experiences were very unique & the last remnants of something soon gone forever.

Ex KGB Towers. At the borders of most old Eastern Block countries there were at regular intervals Guard Towers. They reminded me of water towers here but flatter & more saucer in shape with windows & a wrap around porch. These were the big ones, there were also smaller ones made of wood that reminded me of Park Ranger Towers over here. There were still a lot of cold war things standing in the early 90s.

The stories of Gypsies, Prostitutes, clandestine meetings, Bribes, smuggling in plain sight, my own version of the Wild Wests Hole In The Wall being The Raba Hotel in Gyor Hungary n how Pez Corporation would have killed to know that location. How the staff at the Raba literally guarded my privacy. How my movements resemble a covert agent more than some Redneck buying Pez.

I didn't just drive on the sidewalk in front of Pez Austria, Linz. This happened in other places in the old eastern block + Slovenia. I can't remember exactly why josh n I did this, all I remember is that on multiple occasions it was just the easiest solution. I blame this behavior on tiny tiny cars.
I also accidentally drove through a non vehicle area of downtown Viena.
Offers from prostitutes was a daily occurrence. Exposure sometime literally to prostitution were multiple daily.

 For ten years I had the unexpected pleasure of traveling to Europe & other areas of the world searching for Pez. A more noble journey would have been in search of wisdom or truth. My journey was in search of Plastic.

 My lifestyle allowed me to travel roughly 10 times per year for most of 10 years. Each trip lasted 4 to 8 days. Some of the trips were more of a whirlwind affair involving many countries on the same trip. I don't miss it, especially with flying being what it is today. Though for ten years it was my life & beyond what I ever thought possible. 

Everywhere I went people on the hustle with a recent jolt of freedom. Eastern Europe was to me a real contradiction. Remnants of the old oppression side by side with the new energy of a fresh batch of entrepreneurs. My timing could not have been better, the perfect marriage of an idea, the will to act on it n the environment for it to be possible.

The following are surveillance photos taken on the sly by me. For this transaction I paid Gunther Leitner for 50 boxes of 12 carded Silver Glows per box. The driver and I were then told where to meet off site by Gunther.

It Fell Off The Back Of A Truck. 

Photos are of the silver glow Pez buy. The driver was under orders from Gunther Leitner. I paid Gunther, then met the driver for delivery.

That's me on the left. These are Photos I took covertly while buying Pez.

Covert Pez photos I took. That's me on the right. Tell a friend many more to come.

The Raba Hotel in Gyor Hungary
This is the Raba Hotel in Gyor. I spent well over 6 months here if you add up all my stays over a 10 year period. I loved this place. Highly recommended if you visit Hungary. Last few years of my travels my room was in far left corner of picture. The ones with balconies.

Restaurant at the Raba Hotel. I spent a lot of time here smoking cigarettes drinking espresso & Fanta orange as a chaser. Absolutely lovely place, many fond memories. Table with thingy on it was my table.

The Elvis Cafe.
The Elvis Cafe was this really weird restaurant located at the side of the road. I used to pass this cafe every trip in Hungary. Like I said, If you take the M1 freeway you really don't see Hungary. You have to take two lane blacktops if you want to see a passenger plane sticking out of a building. This restaurant was located about midway between the Vienna Hungarian border and Gyor. I actually stopped at this cafe several times. Had espresso up in the plane and bought several T-shirts.
Elvis Cafe outside Gyor in Hungary. Picture courtesy of Rudi.

The Real Pez Truck
The real for real Pez truck. Parked at the Yellow House aka Hungarocany in Gyor. For all the trucks that have been made and sold to collectors. I never understood why someone did not make the real thing. For me this truck is an icon. This truck is also the reason I thought Gunther was disappointed after we made our first Pez buy. He had them back it up to the warehouse, so once we were done it could be loaded for transport. That buy was early days only a few thousand dollars. What am I saying? I never in 10 years bought more than could fit in a good medium size car. Five duffel bags was my limit. I used to see this truck in Hungary, Slovenia and in between. Picture courtesy of Rudi.

J√°nossomorja  was the name of the town or was it the warehouse where Gunther sent me. All you had to do was spot the smoke stack with Pez on it. then find the roads that got you there. This was the warehouse where Pez dispensers were stored. At the time it was also where candy was made and pez were carded. Like Kolinska in Slovenia. More or less the distribution hub for the old Eastern Block countries and Russia. Gunther owned that part of the world when it came to Pez.
Austria, Traun.

This is the building Where I found Gunther Leitner that day. That's my crappy little red rental car turning the corner. Unlike the photo the parking lot was empty and the main door was wide open.
Below Photo of the Ferry Boat I booked passage on with Silja Ferry Lines in Sweden. Inset is Pez Pal Mariner. 
I arrived at Silja Ferry lines & was allowed to board the ferry & go to the gift shop on board the ship. There I met this really wonderful lady who ran things named Tuula. She said we have about 60 or so Pez Pal Mariner available but you have to be on board as a passenger & at sea before I can sell you any. I told her I really needed a lot of them so she checked & said she had 2 pallets of pez pal mariner at the other port. Off I went to buy a ticket. I booked a round trip, in a Tax deductible high end room. It was a room with an exterior window, so a view of the whole trip. This room even had a shower & a TV. Until this trip the idea of being on a large boat out in the middle of a big body of water left me a little uneasy. After this trip I realized it was more like being in a small city that happened to be a boat.

My pretend Movie. 
opening shot
an 8 year old child, (1959) Pez Outlaw being dragged to, then pushed into the classroom closet at the Maple Grove Elementary school. Darkness, then the door opens revealing Pez Outlaw 10 years later in solitary confinement county jail Ohio. 
see C1. Crazy Is Easy If You Are Motivated, #pezoutlaw... for the rest of this story 
scene 2
She Whispered, "Kolinska" With that one word, Kolinska, a decade long Fairytale that changed my life began.

Segue to a crowded Pez/toy show floor where a woman whispers Kolinka in my ear to Josh n I on the little plane to Ljubliana about to die. see C3.Trip #1 Slovenia #pezoutlaw #hollywood #pez for the rest of this story

scene 3

1994 Flight to Ljubljana. After waiting all night on benches in a small corner of the Vienna airport finally it was time to board. We walk out onto the airstrip & are directed to board Sky Kings plane. 
“Sky King” starred Kirby Grant as Schuyler “Sky” King and Gloria Winters as his niece, Penny.

Pilot copilot & 4 seats for passengers. One of the seats occupied by the overweight male stewardess handing out sandwiches from Rubbermaid containers. This did not look good. The flight turned out to be quite similar to a ride on a scary roller coaster with the male stewardess in your lap more than his own seat. Something to do with flying over the Alps in winter in a small plane, wind currents, downdrafts & low altitudes. We drove clown cars down through the mountains after that. The single most beautiful drive you will ever take is a winter drive from Vienna to Ljubljana through the mountains. The air is crisp & clean. The scenery unmatched anywhere in all my travels. Whenever I think of the most beautiful sights I have ever seen it is that drive in winter. Though driving clown cars through serious mountains can be a harrowing experience.

see C3.Trip #1 Slovenia #pezoutlaw #hollywood #pez for the rest of this story

Wardrobe. Me in my Trench Coat n Midnight Blue Velour Track Suit, clutching a paper towel in my left hand for security, true story. On the flight from the US to Europe I would not let the Flight Attendants take my coat as I did not trust anybody. 

 Sitting in my seat on that flight to Slovenia, I began wondering how I ended up here, sure I was about to die. The whispered word "Kolinska" that led me to that moment in time. From 1970 to 1990 I had been an accumulator of things old, from 1990 to 1994 I started doing antique n toy shows as a seller. During 1993 I started selling Pez from Canada, which led to the decade that changed my life's direction forever. )

scene 4

Pez Outlaw - SJ Glew, The biggest Pez Dealer in the world for 5 years in the 1990s. Spent more than 2 million dollars buying over 2 million Pez dispensers. Made over 70 trips to Europe buying Pez, paying bribes and smuggling Pez dispensers. Pez Outlaw had a very big impact on an entire line of Pez Corporate product causing the Pez Color War.  Over 20 Pez Dispensers were produced in direct result of Pez Outlaw activities by Pez Corporation. Distribution procedures in place for decades were altered because of Pez Outlaw Activities. Author of Pez Outlaw Diary.
On one trip Gunther Leitner sold me aprox 50 boxes of Silver glow Pez dispensers. If I remember correct each box contained 24 carded Silver glow Pez dispensers. At this point Josh n I were staying in Austria so back to our hotel we went. At the Austria Hungary border the Austrian guards required a bond on the 50 boxes of Pez dispensers to be refunded when items were checked in at the airport. So we went back to the hotel n down packed the 50 boxes of pez into 3 large boxes of pez. When we got to the airport customs refused to refund my bond, saying 3 boxes is not 50. Where are the other 47 boxes of pez? The scene escalated till what the Delta airlines rep saw when he walked into the room was. An American with a pony tail & long beard screaming at officials. Two machine gun armed Austrian border guards looking on at the ready n Josh petrified at the whole scene. Delta walked in calmed everybody down, gave Josh a couple aspirin & mediated the whole situation. I flew Delta Airlines from then on, they never failed to stand up for me in any situation.

Here's the fantasy segment I would inserted at the peak of the previous heated discussion.
This Fantasy insert to be placed at the peak of tension.
Viewed as a 60 second sequence where I mentally pause from reality for a few seconds, scene runs, return to reality.

At the beginning of the Fight scene dream sequence have my action hero doppelganger say to the camera. "Cool I also speak French".
Then during the fight have him saying the stupidest stuff imaginable, like where's the bathroom I have to pee.
Have the actor really sell the lines like they are Fight type trash talk.
Use subtitles to let the audience in on the stupidity of me thinking my hero side can actually speak french.
You know cause I'm just that cool in my imagination.
Also have one of the Austrian guards mention that this fight scene was in his last movie.
My alter ego says "yeah he just saw the movie n it's kinda stuck in his head.
The fight scene should look cool n the actor needs to deliver the lines like the toughest guy walking the earth. 

OOOH! Light Bulb.
Have Guards n customs officials transformed into Zombies for Dream Fight sequence.
Hey it's my fantasy, I can make whatever subtle statements I want.

The insert has my alter ego kicking everybody in the rooms ass except Delta n josh.
Josh n I take our money n leave.
It's a big Martial Arts fight scene by a guy that looks nothing like me.
Then fantasy over you come back to real me n crazy.
Delta saves the day.

Closing Shot.
I've always felt that when Pez Outlaw walks off into the sunset, it will be under one of these Alien Umbrellas.
Homage to Chaplin's Little Tramp. For me there are a lot of similarities between Chaplin's Little Tramp n Pez Outlaw. Both stuck there fingers in the eyes of authority. Both are charming yet wicked. Both have very big hearts.

For more on or from Pez Outlaw

Notes From The Asylum - self explanatory...

The Cereal Box Price Guide Book...

Join me on facebook

I love Pez for how it changed my life.

Approximately 90 trips all over Europe, 1 each to South Africa n Australia. The treasure I sought almost $5 Million Dollars and I found it.

see Chapter 1. "The Legend Of Pez Outlaw."  for the rest of the story