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January 16, 2021:

THE LOVE OF THREE AROMARAMA ORANGES

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, I must write these notes in a hurry, for she of the Evil Eye will be here all too soon and I got very little sleep and am overtired and I need some semblance of beauty sleep. There, I’ve said it and I’m glad. So, let me begin by saying I am sitting here like so much fish, listening to the Prokofiev opera, The Love of Three Oranges by Sergei Prokofiev, sung in French. This recording was recommended by our very own elmore and he likes the French version since that’s where the opera premiered. I’m enjoying it very much and the fun thing about Prokofiev is that his music doesn’t sound like anyone else’s. I gather the story is about the love of three oranges. I don’t particularly have love for even one orange. I’m one of the few people who find oranges weird – their flavor and the whole experience of eating one. They make me nervous. They squirt at inopportune moments, their pulpy, the have pits or seeds or whatever they are, but I will give them their due and say that they smell good. In fact, the week before I saw Scent of Mystery in Smell-O-Vision, I went to the 4 Star Theater and saw Behind the Great Wall, a documentary to which smells were hastily added so that it could beat Scent of Mystery to the screen, which, in L.A., it did. I vividly remember the opening of the film, which was a tacked-on prologue with Chet Huntley, talking about AromaRama and how we were going to smell the movie. He picked up an orange (I know you were wondering how this was all going to tie together) and cut it in half and suddenly the theater was alive with the smell of an orange. Unfortunately, that was the high point of the film. The blew the smells in through the air conditioning ducts. It wasn’t anywhere near the fun of Scent of Mystery, which used smells to actually tell the story. What the HELL am I talking about? Oh, yes, The Love of Three Oranges in AromaRama. For those who like visual aids, try this on for size.

Yesterday was a weird day. I only got four hours of sleep and I really needed more. But things started off well with a telephonic call from Muse Margaret, who’d finished the second half of the batch of pages she got, and she really enjoyed them. She really likes the characters in this book and the dialogue, of which there is a good deal. So, that was a nice start to the day. I futzed and finessed, smoothing out stuff, deleting stuff, adding stuff, and then I wrote one new page.

I went and picked up a couple of packages – several screeners and The Love of Three AromaRama Oranges. I came home but could do no work because I had a brief visit with someone who came to pick up CDs and that was followed immediately by the arrival of Marshall Harvey, who now happily has all the footage for project one, which he’ll begin editing this weekend. Color me excited. After that, I went to Gelson’s and got a small rack of ribs and two chicken tenders and came right home and at them all up. Then I finally began writing, but it was really slow going as I thought it might be, as I’m in the final forty pages of the book and getting through this section is a little complex in terms of how to write it so it all makes sense and has clarity. So, like the beginning of the book, there was a lot of trial and error – starting, nuking, starting, nuking, finding the right way into the ending. I stopped for a while and did other things but kept plugging away at it. I got five pages done finally, but I knew they weren’t quite right. I took a break and sat on my couch like so much fish.

Last night, I watched about forty minutes of Mank, starring Gary Oldman, directed by David Fincher, a director who just irritates me now. I really enjoyed Panic Room and I enjoyed The Social Network, but I loathed his version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, and I made the mistake of watching the extras on The Social Network, and I just hate his style of directing actors. Mank has excellent production design, but Fincher’s just showing off – black-and-white scope for no reason, and he even has cue marks in the upper right corner as if it was a release print that was being projected. It adds nothing other than taking you right out of the story. Also, the script is pretty bad. I’ll finish it, but I’m not enjoying it at all.

After that, I kept plugging away writing, but it just wasn’t flowing like I like and I kept going back and adding stuff, which helped with the flow. So, I took an earlier than usual hot shower, and finally got the right idea of how to write what I was trying to write. As soon as I got in my sleeping attire, I went and rewrote two pages in their entirety, and I think I finally got it to feel right. I had a similar problem with the last twenty pages of GEE. So, I still haven’t gotten past seven pages, which is really annoying, but I’ll try to do at least three more, but I’d really like to get up to fifteen pages. I can’t stay up too late, however. But at least I think I’m on the right track and I do know what the next chapter is and how that will go and that one will be much easier – today’s chapter was the tricky one. I’m not through with it yet and I just have to get the rest of it right.

Today, I’ll be up by eight-thirty, and I may go somewhere and have breakfast in the car. Not sure where yet – I might try something different. Then I’ll hopefully pick up some packages, then I’ll come home, futz and finesse, and I’m sure there will be a LOT to futz and finesse, then write new pages – the goal, as always, to get fifteen done. If I do, then I’m in spitting distance of the end and I could finish as soon as Tuesday or Wednesday. I’ll eat and take music and movie breaks as I need them.

Tomorrow will be more of the same and so will next week until I’m done with the book. Next week, I’ll also start pushing forward with project two as well as figuring out the next Kritzerland show. I’m hoping for a major miracle this week and could really use one, I must say and have said. And next week will all be in AromaRama.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, be up by eight-thirty, maybe have breakfast in the car, hopefully pick up packages, futz and finesse, write new pages, eat, write new pages, and take music and movie breaks as I need them. Today’s topic of discussion: What are your favorite movies about Hollywood? Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we whilst I hit the road to dreamland, happy to have heard The Love of Three AromaRama Oranges.

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