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I have given much thought…

May 16, 2017 Leave a comment

I met a girl at a dance, many years ago. We were in our teens, out of town at a beach resort during summer holidays. We danced, and back in the city, we dated. Some of my buddies met her with me, and some of them also dated her. Neither I nor any of my buddies continued a relationship with her. Over the decades since, I think of her from time to time, and wonder why we all moved on from this truly gorgeous young woman.

When I say gorgeous, I mean more beautiful than Julia Roberts or Liz Taylor in her prime. She was more beautiful than any of today’s splendid beauties. Her body perfectly proportioned, her hair magnificent, and the assembled features of her face could not be made more perfect. She had a nice speaking voice and good diction. Her parents were successful and wealthy. She dressed perfectly. They lived in a magnificent stone home, shaded by giant oak trees. So why did all us guys move on? I couldn’t understand it, even within myself.

Sixty years later, she seeks and finds me on facebook. Over the weeks that followed, we talked through facebook every few days. During that time, she gradually told me about her life. She has a daughter, a son, and a granddaughter. She was generally uninterested in my background, which frankly is quite unique.

As the tales spun out, it was easy to tell they were true, although somehow atypical. I never asked at what age she married, but she was disgusted by her ex-husband, who was 10 years older than her. He was wealthy like her father, and was a business associate of her father’s. I found this very odd, for the most beautiful woman I have ever personally known. I had heard that she had become an artist, and I asked her about it.

She was very proud that she had graduated from the Art College, which I also found strange. How tough can it be to graduate at an art college if you have even at modicum of talent? She showed pictures of some of her work. Suffice to say it was worthless crap. No creativity at all, just badly done replicas of others’ works.

Eventually she told me she had a 9-year affair with a man much younger than she was. He was a large black man, with whom she travelled Europe and attended various resorts. He loved her, she said, and she loved him and misses him. She paid the way for everything, of course, because she’s very rich. I suppose the inheritance from her dad and the payment from her ex-husband must come to a tidy sum. The lover left her to marry another woman. Still, she claims they love each other. No intelligence.

She’s still very beautiful, even in her seventies. Her body is bad though, she said because of thyroid cancer. She is never seen without stunning makeup. Tinted glasses hide imperfections around her eyes. She wears baggy, black garments to apparently camouflage her bulk. Always, there is Hermes scarf around her neck. Those $800 silk scarves that Hermes puts out every season. Wealthy wackos like this woman must have the latest one, of course. A couple of times a year, she flies to Los Vegas to visit her daughter and granddaughter.

Suddenly, I had an epiphany. I put together what I think was the truth behind her story. I believe that she was very, very stupid. Just that simply put. Not at all intelligent. That might explain the heroic attitude about having graduated Art College. Maybe it took her 11 years to do it.

I recall that her father was concerned that she was going out with me. I didn’t see why he should be concerned – I’m from the same social enclave, same religion, my family is known and respected in the community. I can actually remember only one date back in the city. There must have been a couple more, and I was wondering why I was uninterested in this very beautiful girl, who very much wanted me. Recalling that date, when I picked her up in my Corvette, I think her father knew that she was intellectually challenged. That’s why he was concerned. She might not have had a date before, I don’t know.

The younger man that she loved and that loved her, until he married someone else, was not a man who loved her. He was a young black guy that had the smarts to enjoy almost a decade with a gorgeous, wealthy young divorcee. He was a gigolo.

I believe her father made a deal with his business associate. He was a man a decade older than his daughter was, and he should marry the gorgeous girl, and look after her. The man was apparently a mean bastard, and made her rich to get out. She’s never had a proper job in her life. Everyone works for a living at some point, but not this girl.

So she lives alone, in a luxurious penthouse, and I expect she has a servant. She has two German cars, and lots of money in place of a brain. It really is a poor little rich girl.

The most exciting organ in a woman’s body is her brain… usually.

 

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I’d Prefer to be a Seagull

March 29, 2017 Leave a comment

When I was a kid, I used to stand out at the end of the pier in front of our cottage at Thunder Beach, on Georgian Bay. I’d stand with the wind at my back, so the seagulls could hover in front of me with the wind beneath their wings, so to speak. They’d line up in tiers, five or six levels high, dozens of wings gleaming in the summer sun.

I’d toss bits of bread up in the air to them. One golden beak after another would snap my gift out of the air and zoom off, while the next gull filled the space. It was a wonderful feeling, standing less than 3 feet from a soaring cloud of gorgeous birds.

They weren’t always soaring; sometimes they were walking on the beach. Waddling, actually, and picking up tiny edibles from time to time. Sometimes they were floating, comfortably bobbing over the waves. At will, they would rise from the surface and gracefully power themselves to… anywhere they want. They can literally go anywhere in the world. They can fly on a breeze, and if they’re tired they can sit on the water. If they want to avoid a storm, they can walk under a tree. If they’re hungry, they are capable of either scavenging or hunting. So, I’d Prefer to be a Seagull.

I’m a seagull on a weekend, walking along the beach at the foot of Toronto. Not only is this a lovely place, where people can stroll together on the boardwalk, but also, a law protects us seagulls. People can go to jail for hassling us. Cool, eh?

There’s a lot to eat along the boardwalk. People drop pieces of hot-dog bun, or a kid drops an ice-cream cone, and there we are, earning our keep. We pick up and consume the dropped things of others. When we’ve had enough, or some kids bother us, we just glide out to sit on the cool waters of Lake Ontario. The water’s clean, with things for us gulls to hunt, as well as scavenge.

The only thing wrong with the Toronto Beaches neighbourhood, which is gorgeous, by the way, is that winter comes to Toronto. It’s not serious, like Montreal or Buffalo, but it’s winter, and Lake Ontario freezes in places. I’d rather not stay by the city and live uncomfortably, even though there’s plenty to eat, even in winter.

I spread my broad, beautiful wings and lift off. I could go to Spain, or Australia, or anywhere. It’s no problem for me, the seagull. I can stop anytime, anyplace, to rest or eat. I think I’ll glide over to Malta for a few months. I’ll be “The Maltese Seagull.” Take care of yourself.

Writing Is Like Acting On Paper

August 19, 2015 Leave a comment

I especially like writing for television. I’ve always sketched just as much as I’ve written so I get to direct the scene with stage directions on paper. I have to say that I don’t know if my way is the best way or even a good way. I’m a grade ten dropout who was driving a courier car when I took a YMCA Guidance and Counselling test. It suggested that I be an artist or a writer and should expect – actually said expect – to excel in show business. It blew my mind. I was in my twenties and working three jobs to care for my wife and daughter. My counselor suggested I try to break into an advertising agency creative department as a faster way to earn a living.

I got out the yellow pages of the telephone directory, looked up Advertising Agencies and started calling them from A to Z. I gleaned a few appointments during which the flaws in my presentation were pointed out to me. After each rejection I rewrote and illustrated my presentation for the next appointment. Inevitably I was eventually in the right place at the right time. I had succeeded in getting through to the Creative Director of one of the most creative, award winning agencies. He said he had no need, but perhaps their sales promotion department could help.

I immediately hung up and called back to the promotion department. I got an appointment. The creative director had a writer away on vacation and another off sick and he needed a sales brochure for a client immediately. I had no idea what to do so I glanced at sheets of yellow typewriter paper on other writers’ desk on my way out. I went to my father’s office at night to use the typewriter. I wrote the brochure and sketched a layout and went back to the boss in the morning. He loved it and immediately put it into production and gave me another assignment for a name brand kitchen appliance company.

I soon rose to a level where I was writing and supervising production of television commercials for national brand products. What I had seen on those copywriters’ desks was texts with a line drawn vertically down the center of the page. On the left side in all upper case letters is the visual description of the scene while the right side of the line, opposite the description is the audio, be it narration or dialogue. Dialogue on paper is acting. First I assume the character of X. I become character Y for the response and so on.

Learning while working in advertising, I took the skills I acquired to another level. I created a television series using the same techniques that I learned and used in making television commercials. My storyboards and verbal descriptions helped make the scenes emerge just as I wanted them to. It was wonderful working with the actors in the studio. We would have lunch in the studio cafeteria most days. Coincidentally, I looked somewhat like Kenny Rogers in those days, and he was taping his show in an adjoining studio. We’d sometimes meet during lunch and took some kidding about our looks.

The series aired on a national network for more than thirty years.
https://search.yahoo.com/yhs/search?p=The+Waterville+Gang&ei=UTF-8&hspart=mozilla&hsimp=yhs-001