His parents were circus acrobats and he became part of their act. When they changed to vaudeville and wound up in California, he got a job in the movies. The founder of Universal Pictures, Carl Laemmle changed his name to Lake. In silent films he played somewhat dimwitted youngsters, The long-running part of Dagwood in the "Blondie" series pretty much continued the the pattern into adult life. He and Penny Singleton also appeared in a half-hour "Blondie" radio series which ran from 1939 to 1950, airing on CBS, ABC and finally on NBC. The program's stylized opening line, delivered by Bill Goodwin became famous: "Uh-uh-uh. Don't touch that dial. It's time for ...[Lake:] Blond-dee".