This is the best idea I've heard in a while. Johnny Depp is quoted as saying "My dream role would be to play musical legend Carol Channing in a biopic of her life. I love her, I really do. She's amazing."
On Wednesday night I had to go to the student BAFTA awards where the film I produced, Our Neck of the Woods, was a finalist. To everyone who said good luck, my reply was, "Thanks, we're not going to win."
Why did I think this? A) Word on the street was that the head of the jury "didn't get" our movie and B) there was a movie about the (first) Iranian Revolution in competition and these awards things always go for "We Are the World" stuff like that. Plus, timing was on their side. I know the people who made the Iran movie; we were at school together. They had cleared a space on the mantel.
Anyway, we won! The point of all this bullshit? EXPECT. THE. WORST. Assume disaster and disappointment around every corner. It can't be faked and takes some practice, but you really have to not believe and things will turn out surprisingly well.
An explosion at a Slim Jim "meat products" plant in North Carolina on Tuesday injured at least 41 people, including four who suffered critical burns, and left a toxic cloud around the facility as authorities searched for three people still missing.
This almost makes up for when I was a kid and spent two days constructing a LEGO pirate ship, only to watch my baby cousin destroy it. My parents did not allow me to exact revenge.
Anyway, the good people at LEGO have released inexpensive ($45) sets of Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater and Guggenheim Museum to coincide with the Wright show in NYC. If I find out they have a model for the Imperial Hotel or Johnson Wax building, or have figured out a way to make Renzo Piano models, I may consider believing in a higher power.
Don't fuck with band geeks. Today a 17 year-old girl on the way to school used her marching band baton to beat off two muggers. The men approached her from behind and tried to grab her coat. When they demanded money, she punched one in the nose and kicked the other in the crotch.
To top it off, she then beat them (savagely, I hope) with her baton before running away. Perhaps The Complete Book of Baton Twirling saved her life. I hope more teen girls start packing batons and giving potential assailants the stink eye.
1513 - Explorer Juan Ponce de Leon claimed Florida for Spain and immediately felt the urge to marry his cousin and shoot beer cans.
1879 – Milk sold in glass bottles for the first time, replacing the need for goat bladders.
1935 - The Works Progress Administration was approved by the US Congress. Dirty pinko commies.
1964 - In Tom Campbell news, the Supremes recorded "Where Did Our Love Go." The song was their first No. 1 single.
1973 - Pablo Picasso dies at 91. Hundreds of people with signed bar napkins become instant millionaires.
1985 - Phyllis Diller underwent a surgical procedure for permanent eyeliner to eliminate the need for eyelid makeup. The line between very busy and crazy is crossed.
1986 - Clint Eastwood was elected mayor of Carmel, CA. His term as mayor was much like his films: well-crafted and serious with the occasional chimp and/or Bernadette Peters.
1988 - Former U.S. President Reagan aid Lyn Nofzinger was sentenced to prison for illegal lobbying for Wedtech Corp. Just a reminder of the glorious Reagan years.
1990 - Twin Peaks premieres on ABC. Americans somehow OK with a character who talks to a log.
1994 - Kurt Cobain was found dead at the age of 27. He had committed suicide three days before.
1994 – His nostrils rimmed with the white stuff, Darryl Strawberry enters the Betty Ford clinic.
1998 - It was reported that Ronnie Wood had caught on fire aboard a small boat in the islands south of Rio de Janeiro. Keith Richards lit three cigarettes off the flames before thinking to douse him with whiskey.
1896 - Whitcomb Judson of Chicago patents a hookless fastener, the first draft of the zipper. Rev Aloysious Haberhorn (my god, these names!) describes it as “nothing more than a sure gateway to the fires of hell!”
1900 - In France, the National Assembly passes a law reducing the workday for women and children to 11 hours. Weaklings! On the same day 23 years later, Alma Cummings sets record of 27 hours at the first dance marathon in NYC. She then collapsed from exhaustion, but still – USA! USA! USA!
1959 – The Dalai Lama flees China and is granted political asylum in India. He goes on to become a symbol of world peace and besties with Sharon Stone.
1967 - Jimi Hendrix burns his guitar for the first time.
1981 – At the 1st Golden Raspberry Awards, Can't Stop the Music “wins” worst picture, defeating Cruising, Friday the 13th, something called The Nude Bomb, Raise The Titanic! (omg I want to see that) and the timeless Xanadu.
1985 – Hulk Hogan and Mr T win Wrestlemania I.
1988 - Pulitzer prize awarded to Toni Morrison for Beloved. Oprah and Gayle achieve simultaneous orgasm.
1991 - Danny Bonaduce attacks a transvestite prostitute in Phoenix, Arizona.
1999 - Fabio hit in the face by a bird while riding a Busch Gardens roller coaster.
1855 - About 5,000 "Border Ruffians" from western Missouri invaded the territory of Kansas and forced the election of a pro-slavery legislature. It was the first election in Kansas. Sad story, but I just like the term "Border Ruffians."
1867 - The US purchased Alaska from Russia for $7.2 million dollars. Insert obligatory Sarah Palin joke.
1870 - The 15th amendment, guaranteeing the right to vote regardless of race, was passed by the US Congress.
1909 - The Queensboro bridge in New York opened, linking Manhattan and Queens. It was the first double-decker bridge.
1958 - The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater gave its initial performance. In later years, graduates like James from Showgirls would put on works of aesthetic mastery at Las Vegas nightclubs.
1964 - Jeopardy debuts on NBC
1966 - Barbra Streisand's Color Me Barbra special aired on CBS-TV.
1978 - Paul Simonon and Topper Headon of The Clash were arrested in London for shooting pigeons from the roof of a rehearsal hall. I love The Clash and despise pigeons so I have no problem with this.
1981 –Ronald Reagan was shot and wounded in Washington, DC, by gun enthusiast and Jodie Foster obsessive John W. Hinckley, Jr.
1987 - Vincent Van Gogh's Sunflowers was bought for $39.85 million.
1993 - In the Peanuts comic strip, Charlie Brown hit his first home run, but still can not get to first base with the little redheaded girl.
In a strange coincidence, a lot of great artists died this day, starting with Ludwig van Beethoven in 1827. The “divine” Sarah Bernhardt, actress, passed in 1923, and German director and major Stanley Kubrick influence Max Ophuls in 1967. Playwright Noel Coward died in 1973, and designer Halston in 1990.
Another genius who died on this date is poet Walt Whitman. While his sexuality is sometimes disputed, his most intense personal relationship was with bus conductor Peter Doyle, who once said “We were familiar at once – I put my hand on his knee – we understood. He did not get out at the end of the trip – in fact went all the way back with me.” Hot! Another account comes from Oscar Wilde, boasting to gay rights activist George Cecil Ives after meeting Whitman in 1882, “I have the kiss of Walt Whitman still on my lips.”
Two milestones for women occurred on this date. Iin 1943, Elise S Ott became the first woman awarded a US Air Force Medal for providing comfort to wounded soldiers on a 10,000-mile flight from India to America. Exactly 30 years later, Susan Shaw became the first woman allowed on the floor of the London Stock Exchange in its 171 year history.
OK, this is getting too serious.
1937 – Spinach growers in Crystal City, Texas, erect a statue of Popeye.
1973 – The soap The Young and the Restless premieres, spawns line of commemorative plates (see photo).
1975 – The film Tommy premieres in London, staring Tina Turner as the Acid Queen.
1989 – Russia holds its first free elections and Boris Yeltsin wins. I think if more than three people Google “Boris Yeltsin drunk photo” at the same time it will crash the system. I couldn’t choose just one image from the thousands available.
1994 – Ricki Lake marries Rob Sussman. Excuse to show photo from Hairspray.
1882 – First demonstration of pancake making at a NYC department store. This should be a national holiday.
1916 – Women are allowed to attend a boxing match for the first time. Sales of smelling salts skyrocket.
1939 – Billboard introduces the Hillbilly music chart. It was later changed to the "Country" chart.
1954 - RCA manufactured its first color TV set and began mass production.
1954 - Pope Pius XII encyclical Sacra virginitas (On consecrated virginity) is released, basically saying virginity is superior to marriage. It also rejects the view that the human body needs fulfiment of the sexual instinct for the sake of one’s mental or physical health. That seems totally logical.
1966 - Beatles pose with mutilated dolls & butchered meat for the cover of the "Yesterday & Today" album. It is later pulled.
1970 - The Concorde made its first supersonic flight.
1985 - Prince won an Oscar for Best Original Score for "Purple Rain." I think more men should wear lace gloves to formal events.
1988 - Robert E. Chambers Jr. pled guilty to first-degree manslaughter in the death of 18-year-old Jennifer Levin. The case was known as New York City's "preppy murder case” and inspired not one, but TWO episodes of "Law and Order".
1989 - In Paris, the Louvre reopened with I.M. Pei's new courtyard pyramid. A myth started that the controversial pyramid had exactly 666 panes of glass (672 are mentioned in construction documents).
1990 - An arsonist strikes Happy Land, a fire-trap New York City social club, killing 87 people. The building that housed Happy Land was managed by Jay Weiss, husband of Kathleen Turner at the time. Turner was quoted as saying “the fire was unfortunate but could have happened at a McDonald’s".
1603 – Queen Elizabeth I dies, lives on in dozens of movies.
1720 - In Paris, banking houses closed due to financial crisis. Thank goodness things are so improved now.
1832 - Mormon Joseph Smith was beaten, tarred, and feathered in Ohio. Probably deserved it.
1868 - Metropolitan Life Insurance Company was formed. Cutest insurance ad campaign ever.
1906 - The "Census of the British Empire" revealed that England ruled 1/5 of the world. On the same date in 1972, Great Britain imposed direct rule over Northern Ireland, the only place they had left.
1955 - Tennessee Williams' play Cat on a Hot Tin Roof debuted on Broadway.
1960 – The U.S. took another step out of the dark ages as an appeals court ruled that the novel Lady Chatterly’s Lover was not obscene and could be sent through the mail. Trashy, but not obscene.
1973 - Lou Reed was bitten on his rear end by a fan during a concert in Buffalo, NY. The male fan was ejected from the show, which is surprising as Lou probably liked it.
1989 – A drunk crashes the Exxon Valdez in Alaska, spilling oil on cute animals. Exxon exec proposes blaming the animals in next board meeting.
1992 - A Chicago judge ruled in the Milli Vanilli class-action suit that $3.00 cash rebates would be given to anyone who could prove that they bought the group's music before November 27, 1990 (the date the lipsynching scandal broke). This, of course, would involve admitting to buying the music in the first place.
1998 - A former FBI agent said papers found in James Earl Ray's car supports a conspiracy theory in the assassination of Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. Shocker.
1616 - Walter Raleigh was released from Tower of London to seek gold in Guyana. Most of the paintings of him are fug so I just posted Clive Owen playing him in a movie.
1916 – Einstein publishes his theory of relativity. Also looks amazing a pair of velour shorts.
1969 - John Lennon and Yoko Ono were married in Gibraltar. Exactly one year later, David Bowie and Angela Barnett were married. I had no idea there was a pre-Iman Mrs. Bowie.
1976 - Patty Hearst aka Tanya was convicted of armed robbery for her role in the hold up of a San Francisco Bank. The recently deceased Natasha Richardson played her in a movie. Sad.
1985 - For the first time in its 99-year history, Avon representatives received a salary. Up to that time they had been paid solely on commissions. I remember our neighborhood Avon lady. You could smell the Skin So Soft from 50 yards.
1990 - Imelda Marcos went on trial for racketeering, embezzlement and bribery. All of it, of course, went to buy shoes.
1992 - Janice Pennington was awarded $1.3 million for accident on the set of the "Price is Right" TV show. In the photo, I think she’s the one in the middle with the crazy eyes.
1994 – Brett “The Hitman” Hart wins WWF championship at Wrestlemania X.
1996 - In Los Angeles, Erik and Lyle Menendez were found guilty of first-degree murder in the killing of their parents. All I remember is that their lawyer had that wild Glenn Close-in-Fatal Attaction hair.
1997 – Inside Deep Throat producer Brian Grazer received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
1999 - Bertrand Piccard and Brian Jones became the first men to circumnavigate the Earth in a hot air balloon. Pointless.