Hi everyone. Today we're catching up with Mason and Rian from The Mason Jar. The Mason Jar you may remember is a small diner/bistro/bar on the Oregon coast.
AJ: Hi guys - how are you?
Mason (dressed in a plain gray t-shirt and blue jeans, gives me a small nod and a smile): Hi. Nice to meet you.
Rian (dressed entirely in black. Black silk shirt, black slacks.): We are wonderful. (He gives me a big hug). How are you?
Mason: Let the poor woman breathe Hollywood.
AJ: He's fine. (He smells really good gang.)
Mason (shaking his head): Don't encourage him.
(Everyone's finally seated).
AJ: So, Rian we know about you. You're an actor and a singer -
Rian: I'm an entertainer. You name it, I can do it.
Mason: Except not interrupt apparently.
Rian: Ignore him. He's trying out for Grump of the Year.
AJ: Anyway, as I was saying, you're an entertainer. What brought you to Cliffport - I would have thought it was too quiet for you.
Mason (muttering): It's not quiet anymore.
Rian: Hush, you. Well, as you know I didn't have much choice. I managed to get myself in a teensy bit of a hot water - (Mason snorts) - and the production company made me take some time out.
AJ: Yes I get that part but you don't strike me as the kind of guy who is ....how shall I say this....inclined to do as he's asked.
Mason: You got that right.
Rian: Not what you said last night, babe.
(Mason closes his eyes and takes a very deep breath but I think I did see a hint of a smile).
Rian: Normally I probably would have told them to shove it someplace the sun don't shine but then I wandered into this little dive with the hipster name -
Mason: Hey! I hope you enjoy sleeping on the sofa tonight.
Rian: Okay I found this little bistro with a cute name and a cute owner.
Mason: You told me I should change the name of the place.
Rian: I was flirting. Stop being such a grump. Anyhow, he invited me to help on this fundraiser and we had the most hilarious conversation about turkey and cheese and which should be on t-
Mason: You don't need to tell them about the turkey and the cheese.
AJ: I hate to remind you but they already know about the turkey and the cheese. (Rian looks like he's about speak) And they know who is which. So to speak. Back to why you stayed.
Rian (gives Mason a funny look): I stayed because he didn't seem to care who I was.
Mason (studying his fingers): I cared.
Rian: You hid it well.
Mason: I didn't want to get hurt.
Rian: I could never hurt you.
(Mason looks up. He's bright red)
Mason: Long story short, he stayed.
AJ: Okay, understood. Mason, what about you? Not tempted to head to L.A. and be closer to your son.
Mason: No. What would I do down there apart from wait for this one to come home from filming and annoy Jake?
AJ: You could open a bar in the city.
Mason: Nah. I'm not the upmarket type. To really make it you'd have to appeal to the celebrities and that's not really my scene.
Rian: Except for me, right?
Mason (sighing): You're so needy. Yes, Hollywood, except for you.
AJ: Okay let's try something a little safer. Tell me about the bear.
Mason: Oh man everyone makes a big deal about that. You know headline stuff - (he spreads his hands as if to show a marquee) - Rian Johns: Attacked by Bear. News at 11. It was a small bear looking for some food.
Rian: It was not a small bear and I'll have you know that for bears, we are food.
Mason: It was a small bear and yeah I'm glad we got the door shut even though I don't think it would have done much but we weren't in any real danger.
(Rian is shaking his head and making oversized bear signs with his arms behind Mason. I have a feeling Mason knows and is ignoring him.)
AJ: Have you had any other encounters like that?
Mason: We get raccoons from time to time. Oh and we had a skunk about a month ago. That was far more worrying.
Mason: Somebody who shall remain nameless wanted to go out and pet it.
Rian: It looked soft and cuddly.
Mason: It was a skunk.
(It's hard not to laugh at these two. They never stop bickering.)
AJ: Yeah, probably a good idea to leave skunks alone. Following the bear incident, you had some problems with the paparazzi. Has that settled down?
Mason: For the most part yeah. At least in Cliffport. There's almost always someone hanging around but nobody oversteps the mark anymore.
AJ: What about when you go to the city? I mean, I know you don't go that often Mason but you do go down sometimes.
Rian (waggles his eyebrows): Oh he goes dow - Ow! (Rubs his arm and stares at Mason) Why did you do that?
Mason: Because you are being an ass. Knock it off. Yeah I go to the city on occasion and mostly they leave me along. They leave Jake in peace thankfully. (His tone and eyes soften as he looks at Rian). It's mostly Rian they harass unfortunately.
Rian: They know better than to go near Jake. I had a letter sent to every publication in the city letting them know if anybody bothered him I'd sue them all the way to next year.
Mason: I didn't know that. But it's not like they would normally agree... wait did you tell them they could follow you in exchange?
Rian (shrugging): Kid needs to study in peace. Moving on.
Mason: We are so discussing this later.
Rian (leans over and kisses Mason): Yes, dear.
AJ (smiling): Last week we were chatting with a friend of yours, Mason. Ben Larsen. He said that he and Alex and their family are going to your wedding.
Mason (nodding): Yeah Ben and I were good friends in law school. He's a fantastic lawyer and he's a really good guy. Great husband, great dad. I'm looking forward to seeing him.
AJ: Can you give us any details about the wedding? Or is it still a secret?
Rian: It's going to be wonderful. I can't wait. I can't wait until October.
AJ: You've set a date?
Mason: Nothing firm yet. Some time in October.
AJ: Formal or casual?
Rian: Oh honey, neither. I told you, it's going to be wonderful.
Mason (leaning toward me): I told you not to encourage him.
AJ: Okay, I'll try to remember. After the wedding, then what? Do you have plans to start a family together?
Silence fills the room. Mason stares at his fingers again and Rian is picking at a loose thread on his cuff. The tension is so thick you could cut it with a knife.
Mason: We're in our forties, I don't know. (I notice he's looking at Rian from the corner of his eye).
Rian (reaches over and takes his hand): We haven't really discussed that. Yet. Who knows what's ahead right?
AJ (changing the subject): Rian, would you ever consider giving up performing and just staying in Cliffport and working in the bar with Mason?
Rian: In a heartbeat. But I think he might kill me if I was under his feet all day.
Mason: Might? I don't think there's any doubt on that score. (He points to Rian) The man's a slob. It's like having a toddler in the house again.
Rian: Oh please. I'm wo-
Mason: I swear to God if you say wonderful one more time today I am going to strangle you.
AJ: Okay I think we're about done. If anyone in Cocktails and Denim has any questions can they leave them for you to answer?
Rian: Of course, that's a wo...a ...it's a great idea.
Mason: Yeah. If you're in Cliffport, please call in for a drink.