About two years ago, I saw that a new owner had moved into a condo just across the driveway from me.
“What’s your name?” I shouted.
“Jim,” he replied.
Months went by and on occasion, I’d wave and he’d wave back.
Then, about two weeks ago, we were retrieving our mail at the complex’s postal stand. I learned that his full name was Jim Yarmer.
“Are you retired or still working?,” I asked.
He said retirement was in his near future.
“What do you do?” I asked.
“I’m a set designer for TV shows,” he said.
My journalist antennas sprouted upward and I said, “That’s a feature story.”
On Saturday, I made the long trek of 30 feet to his condo for an interview.
He showed me designs he had fashioned on his computer for various television sets. Then he wrote down a list of major TV shows he designed, plus two stage theaters at Rio Honda College in Whittier, Knott’s Berry Farm for the Bird Cage Theater and one big-screen, film movie, “Rumor Has It.”
Here is his list of television show sets he designed, working for NBC Studios in Burbank as an assistant art director. He majored in theater arts at UCLA.
“Wheel of Fortune” – A game show that was created by Merv Griffin. It debuted in 1975.
“Days of Our Lives” – A soap opera on NBC. It was one of the longest-running scripted television programs in the world, beginning on Nov. 8, 1965 and airing on nearly every weekday for many years.
“Santa Barbara” – A TV soap opera that aired on NBC from July 30, 1984 until Jan. 15, 1993.
“Married … with Children” – A sitcom that aired on Fox, created by Michael G. Moye and Ron Leavitt. Originally broadcast from April 5, 1987 to June 9, 1997. It was the longest-lasting live-action sitcom on Fox and the first to be broadcast in the network’s primetime slot.
“Rumor Has It” – A 2005 film directed by Rob Reiner and starring Jennifer Aniston, Kevin Costner, Shirley MacLaine and Mark Ruffalo in a romantic comedy.
“Mad About You” – Paul Reiser and Helen Hunt recently reunited after 20 years. It originally aired on NBC from Sept. 23, 1992 to May 24, 1999. It won four Golden Globe Awards and 12 Primetime Emmy Awards.
“Silicon Valley” on HBO — The TV series is an American comedy television series created by Mike Judge, John Altschuler and Dave Krinsky, that premiered on April 8, 2014, on HBO. The series focuses on five young men who founded a startup company in Silicon Valley.
Yarmer is proud of his beautiful daughter, Sara Yarmer, 29 and is delighted to show visitors pictures of her. She lives in Novato, Calif.