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Showing posts from November, 2014

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#11 BEACH MUSIC: A time of tans, blonds and hot pants

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IT WAS A TIME OF TANS, BLONDS AND HOT PANTS, WHEN THE ENDLESS SUMMER WAS JUST A SHORT WALK DOWN A HOT SIDEWALK
Beach Music, an On the Street Where I Livestories is really a tale of two cities; San Juan, Puerto Rico and Santa Monica, California. It was originally published in the LA Times Sunday Magazine.


Beach Music We came to California from Canada, with a detour to Puerto Rico that lasted one endless summer of a year. A year in which I turned 15, and my hair turned blond from living in the sun. “Psst,” the boys and men would call after me in the blue-cobbled streets of San Juan. “Psst! Hey, blondie. Psst! Hey, cutie pie.” I was devastated when my parents said we had to go, that it was time to leave the island so that my older brother, Russell, could get a first rate education. The plan was to drive cross country from Miami and settle in San Francisco so that my brother could finish high school before going on to UC Berkeley. But, once we got there in the fall of 1968, we found that …

Where nobody knows your name

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I've left more than participles dangling lately, skipping out on posting anything of substance here, including a serialized piece about my first marriage. Is that what I do when I get to the hard stuff, cut and run? I don't know about that, sometimes I've stayed too long. Arriving at the hard spot though, where I might have to look a little too deeply into my own contribution to that short-lived but ever-lasting failure, I've been taking a break. I'm still taking a break here but I'm writing daily for my Chapter1-Take1 book-to-movie blog. Here's a piece from that site, a response to the upcoming film Still Alice, that's more me than most. It's for anyone who has ever had to explain to a parent who they were.



I saw the film Still Alice starring Julianne Moore and Kristen Stewart last week having scored a free ticket to a screening at the AFI film festival.  Oh, how I love me some free stuff. It was the last day of the week-long festival, held at the …

My favorite Veteran: A British Officer and a Gentleman

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This is the man that stole my mother's heart. A pretty dashing example of "the greatest generation" in his prime. My mother brought a friend along on their first date because he had a reputation for being a cad - that's "player" in today's lingo - and she was trying to put him off. Rather than being put off, my dad charmed the friend as well sealing the deal. He was always a dazzling dancer and he probably rattled off some compliments in one of the four languages he was fluent in — besides English: French, Italian, Spanish and Arabic. He might even have wooed her in Swahili; self-taught, he had learned a smattering of that language, as well. In any case it worked. The next time he asked my mum out, they went solo. And the rest, as they say, is history. My family's history!

My dad, Edward Good, part of the Greatest Generation, was born in Preston, Lancashire, in the north of England on July 28, 1915. He served with the British Armed Forces in World W…

Jake Gyllenhaal came out of the closet and other silly stuff

This is totally off topic but ....

I had a dream last night (I've been reminded that there is nothing, nothing quite as boring as hearing about someone else's dream, unless you happen to be in it, which you're probably not soooo anyway) where I was writing in bed — I think I was working on my NaNoWriMo novel — when I looked up from my computer screen to see Jake Gyllenhaal coming out of my closet. I didn't want to intrude on his privacy and be a celebrity whore but I figured it was my bedroom after all so I said "Hey, sorry, but seeing as you're in my closet would you mind if I took your picture?"

"Sure" he said. Then he turned around and pulled down his pajama bottoms, not all the way, just enough to reveal a tattoo on the left cheek of what I imagine Jake Gyllenhaal's butt must really look like — a little meaty and well defined — and smiled as I snapped the photo. When I went to post the picture on Twitter, anticipating all the retweets the …