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June 17, 2008:

FASTER THAN A SPEEDING BULLET

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, this week is already flying by, like a gazelle with a heat rash. This month is already half over. I feel like I’m on a speeding train that never stops, going faster than a speeding bullet. Look, up in the sky, it’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s JULY. I gotta tell you. In any case, I do wish June would slow down just a little so we could all stop and smell the roses or the coffee or the sauerkraut. Speaking of sauerkraut, yesterday was a day that was very long. I got up very early, shaved and showered, and then toddled off to Mr. Grant Geissman’s to do a recording session with a singer from Australia. Whilst driving, I got to leave one of my patented BK messages – it takes a lot to get me to leave a patented BK message, but this ignorant little twit woman from my insurance company managed to do it. About six weeks ago, some idiot in front of me turned right. I pulled up, looked to my left, saw that there were no cars for four blocks, and took my foot off the brake to turn right while turning my head back to the right. Well, this dumb cluck who turned right before me stopped. Yes, Virginia, this dumb cluck stopped for NO REASON. So, I slammed on the breaks, but managed to tap his bumper with mine going all of about two miles an hour. Well, you would have thought this was a five-car collision from the way he reacted. I was in a loaner car from the dealer (my car was being serviced) and there was no damage at all to the loaner. His car had a teeny-tiny less than a dime-sized chip to his bumper paint – that is all. I believe I recounted the entire story of this rather silly incident back when it happened. In any case, I got a letter from the guy asking me to prod my insurance company, who hasn’t paid him his $497 yet (why a less than dime-sized paint chip would cost that amount is a question for another day – this neurotic fellow had them replace the entire bumper cover). But, you know, it’s only $497 and the insurance company (mine) should be dancing a jig it’s so cheap. But they weren’t, Blanche, they weren’t. I began having conversations with the woman who was put in charge of it, and she’s one of those really frustrating people who simply don’t listen when you talk, who talk over you, who misunderstand everything you’re saying. She was trying to tell me that because I was driving a loaner that the car dealership was the primary insurance and they had to pay. She said she’d talked to the dealership and they’d agreed. I called the dealership and guess what – they hadn’t agreed and they’d told her unequivocally that she was responsible for payment. That was lie number one. Then she tried to tell me my insurance agent hadn’t called her to discuss the situation. That was lie number two and I called her on it, and then she admitted she HAD received the message. Today, I just decided to leave the message that I knew would at least get her attention – I said, “This ends today – I’ve had it with your lies and your duplicitous behavior. I know that’s how you were probably trained, but to play this game for $497 is stupid and I’m not having it.” I continued, “You must speak with my agent by the end of the business day today, and you must take care of this this week or I will call your supervisor or the head of your company and I will make it my life’s mission to get you fired from your job for incompetence.” I finished with, “You are, unfortunately, going down the wrong road with the wrong guy.” Well, within an hour my agent had had a conversation with her, and everything will be taken care of this week. I know my message seems like it was harsh, but if I played you a tape of any of my five conversations with this person, you’d understand exactly why I did it.

Then we began our session. Our singer was very nervous (only his second time in the studio), so I eased him into the process as quickly and easily as I could, and after about three takes he had the hang of it, relaxed, and just had a good time. We did vocals for six songs, and the whole session, which lasted six hours, went very smoothly. Now Grant has to put some instruments on the basic tracks, and then I’ll comp the vocals and we’ll mix it.

I then came home, had some dinner, and then sat on my couch like so much fish.

Last night, watched a couple more Mannix episodes (with musical scores by Jerry Fielding and Jeff Alexander), and some good guest-stars. Then I watched the pilot episode of the 60s TV series The Invaders, starring Roy Thinnes. I do remember being interested in the show back when it went on the air, and I watched the first few episodes, but just couldn’t get with it, frankly. The pilot episode reminded me why – it was very well done (directed by Joe Sargent), with good Dominic Frontiere music, and a fun cast including Diane Baker and James Daly, but it just didn’t grab me, just as it didn’t grab me back then. I like Roy Thinnes very much. Part of the problem with the episodes on disc one (I scanned them to see the quality) is that the transfer quality on those episodes is pretty bad – they look like they were transferred from a one-inch video source (or maybe even 3/4inch) instead of from the film elements. They’re fuzzy-looking, the colors aren’t quite right, and so visually the show is unappealing on disc one. I understand they get better on the rest of the discs, so I’ll slog it out and see if the subsequent episodes grab me.

Well, why don’t we all click on the Unseemly Button below and let’s do so faster than a speeding bullet.

Today, I will be proofing music all day, and doing a few errands and whatnot as well. I’ll also be thinking about some casting for our upcoming staged reading. There are a few people we have to find.

Tomorrow, I have a lunch meeting, and many things to catch up on. Thursday night I’m seeing my pal Brad Ross, who’s having a reading of his “new” musical The Times, “new” in the sense that it was written over fifteen years ago (with a production back then, and a song recorded on my album, Broadway Bound in the mid-90s). I haven’t seen Brad in a while so it will be nice to say hello and see the reading.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, proof music all the livelong day, then get corrections in to the fellow who’s prepping these lead sheets, I must eat something fun, do errands and whatnot, and perhaps watch some more episodes of Mannix and The Invaders. Today’s topic of discussion: What black-and-white film contains your all-time favorite cinematography? And what color film contains you favorite all-time color cinematography? Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, and do remember to post them faster than a speeding bullet.

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