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Had an insanely delicious dinner and excellent conversation with [ profile] toddalcott tonight. At no time during our meal did I find George Lucas and vigorously insult him. And seriously, I don't know what kind of sauce was on that brown rice-vegetable-tofu combo thing I had, but I mean--blindingly good. Syn├Žsthesia good. And the dessert

Now? Now I'm a bit moody-blue. Hey, which reminds me. On the way to see Alcott "Suspicious Minds" came on the radio. And as it was on, I drove past the Kodak theatre at Hollywood and Highland and there on the corner was an Elvis impersonator who gave me a little Elvis kung-fu wave as I drove past, as Elvis himself sang on the radio. It was a weird and wonderful moment.

In another case of life imitating art (which was in fact imitating life to begin with), I ran out of those little vitamins I've been taking since the late 80s, and am too broke to do much of anything about it. Result: PMS-type Ranma. Weepy sobfest. Waah, I live in a car, nobody loves me. Boo effing hoo, Nancy. Come on, this could be the genesis of the best Oscar acceptance speech ever. Picture me, jeweled gown, a coupla mil in Harry Winston ice dangling between my impossibly huge recently-installed fake boobs, perfect hair, airbrushed tan, flash bulbs going off, Jamie Foxx in the front row making that weird Ray Charles noise. The applause dies down a little. Then:

"Ten months ago I was living in my car, and I put my last $60 in the gas tank and drove to this city where anything's possible, this city where even in this jaded age, there's nothing more powerful than one person with a dream and the passion to see it through. It sounds like a fairy tale, but believe it. Because you made it real for me tonight. I want to thank every one of you, as well as...." which point I'm summarily hauled off by security for crashing the thing and later molested by drunken security chief Dave Coulier. The Oscar, of course, goes to its rightful owner, the surplus Soviet supercomputer who wrote Underdog.

I went to the Writers Guild today to drop off my script and a bunch of paperwork and $75 I didn't have. I got some generic vitamin-water at Whole Foods on Fairfax. And I took a wistful turn by CBS Television City, which is always exciting. As a kid I would always hear Television City mentioned on everything from "Match Game" to "Carol Burnett" and whatnot, and--lacking a visual frame of reference, my imagination went to work on the thing. Television City. What magical words. It was like my imaginary Mecca. Glistening RGB skyscrapers and pixelated highways and high-speed Turtle-Waxed trams, gigantic TV-safe set pieces and oversize props, telegenic ice cream men circling the lot handing out free Eskimo Pies, and oh, the celebrities, casually sauntering here and there being wonderful to each other, wearng beautiful clothes and saying the Perfect Thing at every moment. Captain Kangaroo and Mister Moose doing a crossword. Bob Newhart gives a friendly wave to Gene Rayburn. Carroll O'Connor takes a moment between scenes to sign autographs for starstruck hausfraus. Was that Cronkite having lunch with Fred Friendly? And what were they eating but a year's supply of Rice-A-Roni, the San Francisco Treat. My big sister Fannie Flagg there to help me through adolescence. Norman Lear making sure all my dialog had scope and meaning. Jimmy "J. J." Walker constantly reminding me I'm dy-no-mite. Lyle Waggoner's blinding teeth lighting the way through even the darkest night. And on my sweet sixteen, a brand new car! It was the Emerald City, Neverland, Wonderland, all rolled into one, and Johnny Olson was always there at the door, inviting me and only me to Come On Down. Oh god, how I longed to go there and never see my stepfather or my trailer or Phoenix or my miserable life ever again. I would have done anything, if only I knew what to do. Confidentially? I still would.

I've been in there, of course, but it wasn't until I was much older and everyone I idolized was long gone. There is no more rude awakening than dreaming of Bob Newhart and waking up next to Craig Kilborn. Just saying.

We'll see what Friday brings. Hopefully good things.


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August 2009

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