Posted by Marc Rosenberg at 02:21:47 PM on June 14, 2006
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6/20/2006: Screech Update
No, your eyes are not deceiving you. The man you see to the right is Dustin Diamond, a.k.a. "Screech" of the TV show "Saved By The Bell."
While his acting and stand-up comic abilities are debatable, there's no question that our high-pitched sitcom friend is short on business sense.
Diamond, who made an appearance on Tuesday's edition of The Howard Stern Show, is pedaling his latest marketing strategy trying to sell t-shirts online to help save his house. You can purchase a t-shirt for $15, or for $20, he'll send you an autographed version.
But before you rush out and pick up a new shirt, let's start at the beginning.
Diamond, who reportedly made over $2 million dollars during his 10-year stint on SBTB, lost over 75 percent of his earnings thanks to his parents before he turned 18. He says it ruined his credit (which we don't understand, since that would leave him with over $500K left in the bank).
Neverthless, Diamond, now 29, informed Stern and the crew that he bought a house four years ago under unusual circumstances. Because he couldn't get a regular mortgage (due to his bad credit), he struck a deal on a land contract in Wisconsin with a friend who promised to help him financially. Now his loan has been called in, and unless Diamond can come up with $250,000, he'll lose the house and the land it sits on.
Now Diamond isn't sitting in the poor house. He tours the country now doing stand-up comedy, has a fiance and is living probably better than most of us these days. I'm sure this guy is not living it up at the Ritz Carlton on the road, but you can bet he's not staying at the Motel 6.
And now...he wants more of your money. He acknowledged he'll need to sell about 30,000 shirts to meet his goal.
Is he for real? In this day and age of Tsunami and Katrina victims, we're going to help a guy with no business sense and bad credit by paying for his mistakes?!
I'm sorry Dustin. I would rather donate to Neil Diamond's cause before I defend yours.
UPDATE, 06/20/2006: Ok everyone, it gets better. According to a report from Mike Nichols at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Screech or someone at his house "has made no fewer than six calls to the police" (Port Washington) since moving into the home in 2003, including:
• On July 16, 2003, according to a police report, he said "he was on a television show for many years and in the four days of living in the city, he is already having problems with younger-aged people driving past his residence continuously" and yelling.
• On July 18, 2003, he reported that somebody yelled from a truck that they were going to get him.
• On July 20, 2003, he added that somebody in a car threatened to kick his butt.
• On July 24, 2003, the SBTB star made a report about two young males. They conceded walking 10 steps onto his property and were cited for trespassing.
• In March of 2005, he told police somebody rang his doorbell and took off and possibly threw something at the house.
Read the full Nichols article at http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=437882.
Again folks, think about spending your hard-earned cash on something other than a t-shirt. -M.