Master ventriloquist Jay Johnson shares the charming tale of his Mickey Mouse watch collection

You likely remember the incredibly talented Jay Johnson from his role on the ground-breaking comedy Soap. Jay is also a fantastic story teller, I found these tales of his Mickey Mouse watch collection especially touching.

Here is an excerpt from Jay's blog, The World is a Stage:

I wasn't looking for a new watch. I wasn't a customer of Neiman-Marcus, I have never seen an ad like that before or since. But, I had to have one of those watches before they were all gone. The ad said limited time. I assumed a limited number of watches.

I drove to Galleria immediately, and made my way to the watch counter. Neiman -Marcus hires only top notch salespeople and this guy tried to interest me in a more "mature" watch, but my mind was set. It was the first watch I ever bought for myself and it replaced a Christmas gift watch my parents gave me 10 years earlier.

I loved this new Mickey Mouse watch. I wore it out after replacing three crystals, and having several major repairs. Each jeweler who repaired it over the years said the same thing, "The repair will probably cost more than a new watch…" I didn't care. The minute by minute show that Mickey performed on my wrist daily was worth any price to me.

Wrist watches in the 70's and 80's were fashion statements, and status symbols. While my television friends displayed new Cartier's or Rolexes, I continued to sport Mickey. I was known for wearing that watch; it was my personal statement. I even wrote a ventriloquist act around a "talking Mickey Mouse watch" and performed it on stage over the years. When asked why I wore a Mickey Mouse watch I would always say.. "It puts my daily life in perspective… running late for an important meeting…. you glance a Mickey and when he tells you the time… nothing seems to be so serious." Years later I was completely vindicated when Dan Brown wrote his best selling novel, the Da Vinci Code. His hero Robert Langdon the Harvard professor, wore a Mickey Mouse wrist watch. I was way ahead of that fashion curve.

I have 3 watches I wear, one of them is a Mickey Mouse.