29 July 2012

Arghhhh I've Been Meme Tagged

She who must be obeyed, namely Queen Mimi of Bloggingham has dubbed me with a rather powerful sword in her possession for the "Liebster Award"  While this may sound like something suitable for boiling, it actually means:  A German word for sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing and welcome -  So thank you your most gracious majesty.

The rules are:

1.  Each person must post 11 facts about themselves.

2.  Answer 11 Questions the tagger has given you and give 11 questions for the people you've tagged.

3.  Choose 11 people and link them in your post.  Tell them you've tagged them.

4.  Remember no tags back

So first, 11 statements about myself, though coming up with things you don't know isn't easy:

1.  I married the same man twice.

2.  I went to so many schools that I actually have to number the grades and match to cities to figure out where they were when.

3.  I really, really like to swim nude.

4.  Never ever wear shoes indoors and caftans are preferred for body cover.

5.  68 and I still don't have grey hair except for the "skunk stripe" in front there since I was 35.  (Just whacked off all my hair to check).

6.  Reading for me is like watching a movie.  I get totally lost in the "pictures" to the point that I have to be touched or talked to loudly to "come out of it".

7.  I'm horrible at remembering names unless there is real attached emotional content.  Too many "goodbyes" and need to erase.  Now I seem to erase immediately to save myself the time and trouble.  Trying to get better about this.

8.  My middle names are both surnames _ Jamieson Durward

9.  My first crush was Richard Todd - I was seven.  My mind has never changed about what constitutes an "Oh My - Heart Be Still!!" handsome man.

10.  I have been driving some form of mechanized vehicle since the age of 8 (tractor), have had a license since age 15 and have never had an accident outside of a parking lot or a moving violation (deserved speeding tickets) in 60 years.

11.  Really want to live in New York or Australia for at least a year.


Now for The Queen's curiosity:

1.  What is the nearest book to you?  Your Kindle does not count.

Embattled Dreams, California in War and Peace 1940 - 1950

2.  When was the last time you took a "me" vacation

Roughly once an hour - I have a GREAT imagination

3.  How many telephone numbers do yo have? - Two

4.  If you could fix one thing in the public school system, what is the one thing you would do immediately?

Immediately reinstitute all music, drama, and literature classes even if it meant tossing out some of the "basics"

5.  Are you a big tipper?

Yes - I was a waitress.  You have to be really, really bad for me not to make excuses for the service.

6.  Do you watch reality shows?

Never - Mindless drivel stultifying the American psyche

7.  Who is your favorite sports team player?

Historical:  Sandy Kofax
Current: Harley Ramirez of the LA Dodgers

8.  If you could travel in a spaceship to any planet, which planet would you like to visit and why?

This one.  There are so many places I still want to see.  If forced into space, then Mars as there stands a chance of a habitat suitable for living.

9.  When was the last time you sat in a church?

Honestly don't remember.  It's been years.  

10.  Are there any aspects of blogging that annoy you?

People who visit but don't comment even to say "Hi!"

11.  When someone follows you on their blog or subscribes to your Facebook page, do you automatically follow and subscribe back?

Not usually.  If they are someone I recognize or with a shared close friend, then maybe.


Here are the questions I've sending to the folks tagged as "Liebster" below:

1.  Who, when and where was your first kiss?

2.  You are giving a party and can invite five people fact or fiction - Who's coming to dinner?

3.  How many people can you call now who have known you since you were in school?

4.  What Are you wearing right now?

5.  What are your current favorite TV shows

6.  If you drink what is your favorite alcoholic libation.  If not, flavor of Ice Cream?

7.  What is your favorite Olympic event?

8.  You just got thrown out of your country.  Where do you want to become a citizen?

9.  Do you have a hobby - What is it?

10.  Do you dye your hair?

11.  Do you consider yourself a Conservative, Moderate, or Progressive?

Now let the tagging begin.  Queen Mimi  grabbed some of my favorite people I may not get to eleven:  Shelly Tucker, Mary Tomeselli, Julia Phillips, Claire Pitt, Carol George, Arabella, Then if they choose to do it twice:  Travis, Linda Orlomoski ... And that's all I've got.

27 July 2012

5 On Friday - Another IPOD Shuffle

Our friend Travis of Trav's Thoughts invented this meme. To join in visit his website to sign in and then share your selection of five pieces of music for the week.

This week keeping it simple with IPOD roulette. Spinning the shuffle machine to see what happens with the usual eclectic results.

20 July 2012

5 On Friday - Fly Me To The Moon

Our friend Travis of Trav's Thoughts invented this meme. To join in visit his website to sign in and then share your selection of five pieces of music for the week.

On July 20 of 1969 Neil Armstrong walked on the moon. One of these days we really need to go back and build, but in the meantime some moon music.

17 July 2012

Sundown Message In A Bottle

The Happiest Place On Earth

July 17 just happens to be the anniversary of the opening of Disneyland in 1955. While I didn't go on opening day, I did attend during the first month and several times a year from then until 1962 when I married and moved to Northern California which reduced my visitations to once a year for the next 20 years.

There are many stories to tell about the adventures on Tom Sawyer's Island, just ask any California female of my age group about the dating service at Merry Go Round Rock, or the course I could give how to get from land to land at record speed and avoid standing in lines or where they put the telescope in Star Wars and other trivia. That is for later years.

Now normally I wouldn't recommend dating outside of ones species, but I must confess that because of Disneyland, one very pleasant evening was spent romancing a deciduous growth. As you can see from the photograph above, he was a rather handsome tree.

In 1961 Disney had just released Babes In Toyland. To promote this event, the space just to the right of the entrance was given over to a walk through exhibit of the scenes of the movie with music. My girlfriend and I skipped this until the end of the day and thought we would make it the last stop. Once walking through the scenery and since we had been on our feet all day, it seemed like a good idea to sit on the low wall at the exit area until heading for the car. Leaning back against the very stationary forest also seemed wise until the tree said, "Please don't lean on me". Once the leaping up in startled surprise and shrieking stopped, I apologized for getting too familiar with his trunk.

My tree and his leafy friend indicated they were about to get off work and would we stick around for a while until they changed. Now until you have found yourself gazing into the eyes of a forest growth asking you for a date, you haven't quite exposed yourself to all that life has to offer. It was a pleasant one time evening due to geographic undesireability, but a pleasant memory only topped by the day I really did shrink the kid (story for next year's anniversary).

Happy Anniversary to the Happiest Place On Earth

16 July 2012

The Job I Really Wanted

You have read here about my experiences of growing up in a town that was a crossroads for the movie industry and how I had brushes against celebrity for various reasons.  Some people want to grow up to be movie stars.  There was one job I always wanted in the field.  I wanted to grow up to be a Script Supervisor.  While you have heard about producers, directors, cinematographers, set designers etc.  - all of the people eligible for Oscars, very few people in the audience have a clue about this job.  They do get credit at the end of the movie if you stay for the credits, but that is about it.  What you don't know is that whether or not you liked a movie was often on a subliminal level the result of whether or not this person did their job well.

What is even more remarkable about this job is that even from the earliest days of film, it was a woman's job.  The earliest incarnation was "Script Girl".  This was the exercise of male dominance who knew they needed a "girl" to make sure everything looked good when it hit the screen.  Just as secretaries have now become Administrative Assistants, Script girls have now moved up to become supervisors because rarely are they men.  What you don't hear is that most directors have "girls" they always ask to be their assistants.  They now get paid very, very well to save the director's ass ... daily.

Definititon:  Maintains an accurate shooting script and recording in detail all information related to each take, including length of shot, scene and take number, camera placement, and printable takes, as well as any notations on dialogue, action, props, set dressing, wardrobe, make-up, and hair in order to provide continuity during shooting and to facilitate editing.

What You See On The Screen

How it looked to the actor

How it looked to the director

How it looked to the Script Supervisor

How important is this job?  Every commercial movie made has an IMDb page giving all sorts of data about the cast, crew, plot, quotes, financials etc.  One page is always devoted to mistakes of all kinds and there are huge numbers of people who avidly follow and contribute to these pages just for the fun of it all.  It is pretty much the script supervisors job working with the director to keep these pages very, very, very short.  You have all read my rant about the errors of the movie Australia playing havoc with what should have been a much better motion picture.  Here is the IMDB page with the list of errors for that film.  (It is not a short list so either the director or the script supervisor was a major FAIL)

So life didn't quite work out according to plan, but that early urge for a job I knew I would love led to jobs as a researcher, editor, administrative assistant - the person in the background who makes sure everything is correct.  Still, even now, I would have loved being a script supervisor.

13 July 2012

5 On Friday - Tell Me A Love Story

This wonderful meme was invented by our friend Travis of Trav's Thoughts. To join in, go to his page, sign in and share your five choices of music for the week.

My Favorite songs are often ones that could be the great novels or scripts for whole movies - The story songs.  Now this is a tradition in folk music and old ballads, but there are modern incarnations and here are some of my favorite "stories in song".

I'll kick it off with a May December Romance in Crimes of the Heart written and sung by Amanda McBroom

Then a couple with nothing in common but their dreams - John Buchino's "Sweet Dreams" sung by Barbara Cook

Next up a pair of "Star Crossed Lovers" only this time on meaner streets than Shakespeare's Verona. Mark Knopfler with Romeo and Juliet (Had a hard time picking just one Knopfler song as he is a modern master of the art - Check out "Done With Bonaparte"

Shotguns at the ready Bonnie Raitt takes you on a wild ride to chase down a runaway

Now a slice of real life. Leonard Cohen's song Chelsea Hotel #2 that is supposed to be about his encounter with Janis Joplin written after her suicide. Here sung by Rufus Wainwright (Warning for the sensitive about such things, it kicks off with a graphic sexual description but if you love Cohen, you are used to that.  )

06 July 2012

5 On Friday - Theme Songs

This wonderful meme was invented by our friend Travis of Trav's Thoughts. To join in, go to his page, sign in and share your five choices of music for the week.

This was the very first song I remember hearing on the radio while I was reading and thinking of it as "my song". The singer was Bing Crosby.  It became a best seller in 1948.  While writing this I realized that I was four years old and already had a strong identity of a "me" who loved to travel.

While records had been bought for me, this was the very first record I ever went to a store and bought for myself.  It was 1956.

For eight years of my life when I entered a room where a wonderful man was playing for the public, this was the way he said hello with "my song".  Are we starting to detect a theme?

This is the movie from 1978 that always reminds me of a "making what bread we need at a piano bar in the Valley".  The first time I heard that line in the  "60's" portion of the movie script, I almost choked to death laughing.

This is simply the song that says how I feel that friendship is at the heart of any true love.   The movie was "The Jazz Singer" in 1980.

That takes us through the first 36 years, though I left out 1961 - 1971, but that is another story.  So what are the "Theme Songs of Your Life"?

02 July 2012

Happy Bottom Riding Club

"When you have a choice -- choose happy."

Before anyone really knew there was a NASA and before the world had honored the first astronauts by making them really famous, they hung out at a classy little joint named the Happy Bottom Riding Club located in the California high desert run by a middle aged lady who raised hogs. In the movie, "The Right Stuff", the actress playing Pancho Barnes is the one behind the bar and calling the newest test pilots "pudknockers". At her best as in the Hurrell photo above, she wasn't attractive.  In fact, Chuck Yeager called her "the ugliest woman he had ever known" but it was her fence where he broke his rib before flying the X-1 for the first time and her restaurant where he celebrated breaking the sound barrier.

Whatever fame she had was pretty well forgotten by the mid 1950s except among a small and select community. So why did all these men respect this woman almost more than any other they had ever met. Why was she honored by the Governor of California, praised by Howard Hughes, make friends with movie stars and astronauts, and why did General Jimmy Doolittle deliver the eulogy for her memorial service?

Do yourself a favor and meet Pancho Barnes on the link above and this trailer; then watch the full documentary next Monday on PBS on July 9.