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September 14, 2019:

THE TOWERING NOTES OR NOTES ON FIRE

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, I am sitting here like so much fish, having just eaten a small baked potato and two small chicken tenders.  The baked potato was amusing for the first five bites, loaded with lesser-calorie whipped butter and a bit of sour cream and chives, but then it became gross, and yet I kept eating the damn thing until it was no more. It is no longer gross; however, I am completely gross.  I’d only had a breakfast burrito prior to that, way back at noon o’clock and that had eggs, cheese, and onions only, with some guacamole and salsa on the side.  So, even though I’m feeling completely gross, I’m hoping the calorie intake wasn’t too horrible.

Yesterday was a perfectly fine day – it started off with the doorbell ringing at eight in the morning – some tree people asked me to move my car from the front of the house, as they were about to remove a tree from across the street.  I said no, of course, since the car wasn’t mine.  I went back to bed, and despite the noise managed to sleep until ten-forty, a bit more than eight hours of sleep.  Once up, I answered e-mails and such and then I headed out to do a couple of things, after which I went to Jerry’s Deli and had the breakfast burrito. Prior to leaving, I saw that the Indiegogo funds had already been credited to the bank, so that was a big sigh of relief.  Hopefully, the balance will come sooner than later.

Then I went to the mail place and picked up an envelope and no packages, then to the bank for the ATM, and then home.  Once home, I did some work at the piano, made a recording, and sent that off.  Then I went to Indiegogo and spent three hours getting the list o’ perks done – I now have a document with perks, names, addresses, and notes about which contributors were getting multiple items.  I also realized that I’d missed quite a few people on the ten-CD perk, so more e-mails about that will go out tomorrow with reminders to those who’ve already been e-mailed but haven’t responded – those will go out on Monday, and the helper will come then and pick up everything that’s here, we’ll go over the sheet so there are no screw-ups, and then by the end of next week all perks that need to be shipped should be.  And soon thereafter, we should have Henry King at Fox in and that will ship.  After that, I was exhausted, so I sat on my couch like so much fish.

Last night, I watched a motion picture on Blu and Ray that I’d never actually seen – Lawman, it was called, starring Burt Lancaster, Robert Ryan, Lee J. Cobb and some great character actors, as well as some solid newcomers.  Directed by Michael Winner, who wouldn’t know “subtle” if it hit him in the face – his is the sledgehammer approach to directing, none of it has any style, but at times it certainly can be visceral.  The actors are all terrific, the script has its moments, and Jerry Fielding’s score is great.  If you’re a horse lover, you’ll want to either avert your eyes a few times. Apparently, Mr. Winner purchased a dead horse from a slaughterhouse and it stood in for a real horse after the real horse had been “shot” for the film.  Not pleasant.

Then I went to Gelson’s and got the small chicken tenders and baked potato, came home, and began watching a second motion picture on Blu-ray entitled The Towering Inferno.  It came out a decade ago and I haven’t watched it since.  Everyone thought it was a pretty good Blu-ray back then, but a decade later it really doesn’t hold up well and could absolutely use a fresh transfer.  The film is still very entertaining – the effects are impressive for their time – today it would all be done with CGI – every bit of it – and it would therefore be impressive, but never dangerous-looking.  It’s long, but just enjoyable, and the large, starry cast is great – Steve McQueen, Paul Newman, Faye Dunaway, William Holden, Fred Astaire, Jennifer Jones, Robert Wagner, Richard Chamberlain, Robert Vaughn and many others.

After that, it was already time to write these here notes whilst feeling gross.

Today, I’ll sleep in until around eleven or thereabouts, then I’m going to a bookstore on the other side of the hill, in my old neighborhood. I’ve been meaning to pay a visit ever since I saw the guy who owns it at the paperback book show where I sign every year.  His first store was in West LA near the Nuart, but he moved.  After the visit, I’ll go eat something fun – perhaps a visit to the Farmer’s Market Du-Par’s might be the ticket, or maybe just the food court there. Then I’ll come home and relax.

Tomorrow is more of the same, then I’m seeing some auditions at the Group Rep – general auditions, and I’ll be able to call in anyone I think would be good for The Man Who Came to Dinner, presuming they want to join the company.  Then next week is very busy – shipping out perks, getting ready to ship out Henry King at Fox, announcing new titles (two, for sure) and getting the Creature DVD packaging ready and to the printers, and the DVD itself on the fast track to being finished.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, sleep in, pay a visit to a bookstore, eat, and relax. Today’s topic of discussion: What are your favorite “disaster” films of the ilk of The Towering Inferno?  Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, as I ready the world for The Towering Notes or, as I like to call them, notes on fire.

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