Saturday, January 27, 2018

The Roots Is The Toots: The Music That Got The Generation Of ’68 Through The 1950s Red Scare Cold War Night- Betty’s Tale -With The Teen Queens’ Eddie, My Love In Mind

The Roots Is The Toots: The Music That Got The Generation Of ’68 Through The 1950s Red Scare Cold War Night- Betty’s Tale -With The Teen Queens’ Eddie, My Love In Mind  


(Aaron Collins / Maxwell Davis / Sam Ling)The Teen Queens - 1956
The Fontane Sisters - 1956
The Chordettes - 1956
Dee Dee Sharp - 1962
Also recorded by:
Lillian Briggs; Jo Ann Campbell; The Sweethearts.
Eddie, my love, I love you so
How I wanted for you, you'll never know
Please, Eddie, don't make me wait too long
Eddie, please write me one line
Tell me your love is still only mine
Please, Eddie, don't make me wait too long
You left me last September
To return to me before long
But all I do is cry myself to sleep
Eddie, since you've been gone
Eddie, my love, I'm sinking fast
The very next day might be my last
Please, Eddie, don't make me wait too long
You left me last September
To return to me before long
But all I do is cry myself to sleep
Eddie, since you've been gone
Eddie, my love, I'm sinking fast
The very next day might be my last
Please, Eddie, don't make me wait too long
Please, Eddie, don't make me wait too long
(Transcribed from the Teen Queens
recording by Mel Priddle - May 2006)


…come closer, will you, because I have got a story to tell. Come on over here, here nearer me and get away from that midnight phone waiting, that eternal waiting. Waiting now in vain because if he or she has not called by this hour, nine, on a school night they are not going to call and anyway you don’t need Ma to yell at you about wasting your time waiting for that call when you could be doing homework or something. Yeah, like you could do homework with your head filled with anxiety about that call. What do parents know anyway never having been young, never having been in love. Hey, while I am talking maybe you should put on The Teen Queens’ Eddie My Love like I have on right now or some other teen trauma tune, sad, sad tune to help drown your sorrows while I’m telling the story,

Yes, get away from that midnight telephone call wait by your bedside table and listen up a minute or two because I’ve got a story to tell, a 1950s teen story to tell, or let’s make it a 1950s teen story, and if it works out for 1960s, 1970s, or 2000s teens except for the newer techno-gadgets cellphone, iPhone, smart phone ways to wait, to wait that midnight call that are different, well, well this waiting by the phone hasn’t changed that much since the 1950s when this trend started or reached a certain plateau where waiting became one of the ways that you knew you were a forlorn teen-ager, knew that life was going to be filled with ups and downs and so there you have it.

And let’s make it a boy-girl story, although I know, and you know I know, that it could have been a boy-boy, girl-girl, whatever story and that’s okay by me, except that it wouldn’t be okay, okay as a public prints 1950s story since those kinds of relationships had not been deemed okay to tell except maybe in some North Beach, Greenwich Village, Hollywood hills small print, exotic, erotic small press back door scenario. Mainly those kinds of relationships would be gist for the mill in the snicker of boys’ sports after school gym locker room faggot-dyke baiting and well beyond the sad tale I have to tell.

And let’s make it a Saturday night, a hard by the phone, waiting Saturday night, maybe midnight, maybe not, maybe you cried or brooded yourself to sleep before that hour, that teen dread hour when all dreams came crashing to the floor, like a million guys and girls know about, and if you don’t then, maybe move on, but I think I know who I’m talking to.

And let’s make it a winter night to kind of fit your mood, kind of make you realize that you are totally alone against the elements, yes, a long hard winter night, wind maybe blowing up a little, maybe a little dusting of snow, and just that many more dark hours until the dawn and facing another day without…

And let’s make it, oh the hell with that, let’s make it get to the story and we’ll work out the scenic details as we go along…

I’ll tell you, Betty’s got it bad, yes, Betty from across the way, from the house across the way where right now I can see her in her midnight waiting bedroom window, staring off, staring off somewhere but I know, I know, what ‘s wrong with her. No, not that, no she is not in the “family way,” I don’t think, I hope not, hope not because then she will have to suddenly go out of town to visit some ailing aunt, or something like that. What is wrong with Betty is simpler. Her Eddie has flown the coop, and has not been heard from for a while.

Yes, Betty’s got it bad, and it’s too bad because she deserves better. Let me tell you the story behind the story, although I can already see that you might know what’s coming. I had noticed Betty’s change of behavior but was not sure what it meant. It first started when she did not return my wave when I waved across the street to her, then she would hang her head down walking like some zombie in the movies. So one day I asked her about what was up and she said she did not want to talk about it, made a serious point to me that she did not want to talk about it when I pressed the issue so I let it drop. Yes, so the way I know the story is because Betty’s best friend, Sue, gave me the details when I saw Betty continue moping around, moping around day after day like there was going to be no tomorrow, especially after leaving school with her head down, arriving home with her head moping down even more after the mailman came. I contacted Sue to see what she knew, knew from those little afternoon girl chatting calls or maybe from that mandatory Monday morning before school in the girls’ “lav” talkfest. 

Yes, I know, I know Sue, old best friend Sue, is nothing but a man-trap and has flirted with more guys in this town than you could shake a stick at, including Eddie a couple of times when Betty had to go out of town with her parents (keep that between us, please). Hell, now that I think about it, I’ll get this thing all balled up if I tell it my way what with what I know, or people have told me about Sue and I want you to get the straight dope.  Let Betty, old true to Eddie, Betty tell her story herself, or at least through Sue, and I’ll just write it down my way, and you be the judge:

“Last summer, oh sweet sixteen last summer, old innocent girlish sweet paper dream last summer, Eddie, Eddie Cooper, Eddie with the hot cherry red, dual exhaust, heavy silver chrome, radio- blasting, ’55 Chevy (my brother Timmy told me about cars and their doo-dads, I just like to look good in them and the ’55 is the “boss”), that I knew I would be just crazy to sit in, and give the “look”, the superior “I’m with a hot guy, and sitting in a hot car , bow down peasants look,” came rumbling and tumbling into town.

Summer beach time, soaking up the sun down between the yacht clubs beach time, summer not a care in the world time , Sue, my best friend Sue, my best friend Sue and all that stuff they say about her and the boys is just fantasy, male fantasy, and I were sitting just talking about this and that, oh well, about boys, and I was telling her the latest about Billy, Billy from the neighborhood, who I had been going out with for ages, more or less, Billy with the reading too many books and wanting to talk poetry or “beat” stuff, Billy, Billy with the no car, or sometimes with car, father’s old run-down jalopy which might or might not work like happened one night and it was a close thing that I was not grounded for coming in so late, but no “boss” car, never, when Eddie, Eddie, Edward John Cooper, parked his honey Chevy and came over to us, through all that sand and all,

Eddie gave Sue the “once over,” like guys will do automatically with any girl something about their genetic make-up drives them that way and Sue adds her part by always looking like she has either just finished a roll in the hay or would not mind being talked into it but that is just her come-hither “style” and like I said before don’t make too much of it. Yeah, she knows sex stuff, a lot from what she tells me but mostly it’s to aid that come-hither thing she has with guys.  Besides whatever Sue has, or thinks she has in the guy department I secretly thrill to know that that “once over” is just a game because even as he came over the sand I could see he had eyes, big blue eyes, for me, only me, We talked, idle talk, sex in the air flirty talk, don’t talk sex straight out but weave all around it talk, the mating ritual I guess they call it, still a lot of talk for a summer beach day, and I knew, I swear I knew he wanted to ask me out for later, or maybe right there to ride in his car but three’s company, and for once I couldn’t shake Sue, my best friend Sue, Sue with the million boyfriends so she says, who I could see was taken in by his big blued-eyed, black haired, tight tee-shirt, blue jean charm too.

Truce, Sue truce, as we walked home, Eddie-less, a few blocks away. I left Sue at her house. Truce still, except that I heard a big engine, a big “boss” car engine, coming up behind me as I hit the sidewalk in front of my house, and dream, dream wake me up, it was Eddie, Edward  John Cooper and that cherry ’55 Chevy. He said, and I will never forget this, “Hop in,” and opened the door. I was supposed to have a “date,” some dreary poetry reading date with Billy, ah, Billy who. We were off as soon as I closed that cherry red door.

And we were off, off for a sweet summer of love, ’55 Chevy love and okay, truth, because I know that Sue probably blabbed it around but I let Eddie take me to the back seat of that warm-bodied Chevy one night, and some nights after that. But let me just tell you this about Sue, my best friend Sue, honest, she’s the one who told me what to do with a boy, yah, she told me everything.

Late August came as summer beach love drew to an end and those damn school bells seemed ready to ring, Eddie, out of school Eddie my love, told me he had a job offer in another state and he needed to take the job to support his mother and his ’55 Chevy.

I started crying; crying like crazy, trying to make him stay, stay with his ever-lovin’ Betty but no he had to go. He didn’t know about a phone, or a phone call, but he said he would write and I haven’t heard from him since even though I wear out the mailman every day”…
Christ my heart bleeds for Betty every time I think about what Eddie had done, and see, I know Eddie, no I don’t know Eddie personally but I know Eddie stuff, stuff that has been going on since Adam and Eve, hell, probably before that. I know Eddie stuff from the days a few years ago when I used to hang around with junior Eddies, car-less Eddies who only dreamed of foxy Chevys then being underage, at Jack Slack’s bowling alleys over on Thornton Street heading toward the beach. 

Those were my corner boy days before I got into more serious stuff, my poetry readings that Betty sniffed her nose at for her Eddie. And those junior Eddies, and me too, once we got started on the subject of girls which we were clueless about but which began every lonely hearts Friday night holding up the wall conversation, were pretty raw about what we would, or would not, do with girls, mostly the unattainable ones at school, and then move on like the wind. And some of my corner boys like Frankie Riley and Jimmy Jenkins to name names actually proceeded to do just that once they got their wheels.  Yeah, so I know the Eddies of this teenage world and this is the hard truth I would tell Betty if she would listen for one second:

Betty, Betty, sweet Betty, I hate to break it to you but Eddie, Edward John Cooper ain’t coming back. And old Eddie ain’t writing and it ain’t because he doesn’t have the three cents for a stamp, or cannot write more than a few simple lines even in the best of times, or is not near some desolate mail box, or, well enough of that for Eddie excuses because that is all the gaff. No, Eddie, let's just say Eddie’s moved on to greener pastures like every other Eddie who did only what he was capable of doing- love ‘em and leave ‘em. Not because he intentionally started out that way with you but because that is his take on the world, the girl world. These guys, even ugly guys like “Whiskey” Pete who you probably have heard of and who lives a few streets over from us, who have “boss” cars operate in the world like that because they know that front passenger seat will not be vacate long when mating season comes ago.  

(I heard later after Sue filled me in and I was curious, but don’t tell Betty because she is weepy enough, when I asked around about it, asked some guys who had known Eddie when he worked at Smitty’s Garage last summer while he was with Betty that Eddie had left for Florida, had a new girl there, or maybe an old girlfriend who had some kind of spell over him but all of that, that last part about some forlorn Eddie love was just guys talking one night. Eddie guys are more in the first category, the new girl and move on claiming that some mother needed desperate support in some other state and they would write. But you never know with Eddie guys on that last part.) 

Betty, Betty hold onto your Eddie, My Love dream for a moment. But Betty, tomorrow, not tomorrow tomorrow but some tomorrow you‘ve got to move on. Betty then why don’t you call up your Billy. I’ll be here by the phone, the midnight phone…

On The 120th Anniversary Of His Birthday- Films To While Away The Class Struggle By- With Serge Eisenstein’s “Strike” (1925) In Mind

On The 120th Anniversary Of His Birthday-  Films To While Away The Class Struggle By- With Serge Eisenstein’s “Strike” (1925) In Mind

Films To While Away The Class Struggle By- With Serge Eisenstein’s “Strike” (1925) In Mind

DVD Review  

By Political Commentator  Frank Jackman

Strike, starring a cast of hundreds of working people and others, directed by Serge Eisenstein, 1925

No question, no question at all that some political films whether they were intended as propaganda for a certain viewpoint as with the film under review, Russian mad man filmmaker Serge Eisenstein’s 1925 classic Strike, or because as the story line developed everybody was compelled to think through the implications of the cover-up and preclude to coup in a film like Costa-Garvas’ Z remain in our consciousness long after mere entertainment films have faded from view. Here is the beauty of Eisenstein’s work whether with Strike or in an effort like Potemkin, the one with the famous baby carriage scene on the Odessa Steps. The medium is the message to steal a phrase from an old-time social media commentator like Marshall McLuhan. The whole thing is done, powerfully done, with nothing but absolutely stunning cinematography, a few signboards (in Russian with English subtitles), and some very interesting and varied mood music which if I am not mistaken included some jazz theme stuff from Duke Ellington, and if not him then definitely some jazz riffs along with that inevitable classical music that one would have expected from a Russian filmmaker who grabbed what he could from the Russian Five.        

Now the question of who a film is directed at is usually pretty much just to lure in general audiences, maybe if it is cartoonish then kids but usually general audiences. Eisenstein in this film though is directing his efforts to working people in order for them to draw some important lessons about the class struggle. Of course Eisenstein was working shortly after the October Revolution of 1917 in his country and so he probably was more or less committed to this type of film in the interests of the Soviet government and of the world revolution that was still formally what the Bolsheviks and their international allies were all about. (I might add though that a later film about Ivan the Terrible had the same fine cinematic qualities and that was not particularly directed at the world’s working classes but to ancient Russian patriotic fervor as the smell of war, war on the doorstep became apparent.) That drawing of lessons about what happened during the strike is the force that drives the film.

Here is how this one played out in all its glory and infamy. The workers at a Russian factory of unknown location and for that matter of unknown production had been beaten down by the greedy capitalists and stockholders, had had no say in what they made and how much dough they made. (The scenes with the greedy capitalists are a treasure, something out of any leftist’s caricature of the old time robber barons complete with fat bellies, cigars and top hats). Like any situation where tensions are strung out to the limit it did not take a lot to produce a reason for a strike for a better shake in this wicked old world. Here it was an honest workman’s being accused of a theft which he couldn’t defend himself against and so in shame he committed suicide. After have previously spent several weeks talking about taking an action to better their conditions the leaders of the underground “strike committee” decided to have everybody “down tools.” (The scene of this action with a rolling shutdown as section after section left their benches was breathtaking.)      

Of course in turn of the century (20th century) Russia (and elsewhere) the capitalists were as vicious as one would expect of a new class of exploiters dealing here with people, men and women, just off the farm and so in no mood to grant such things as an eight-hour day (a struggle that we in America are very familiar with from the Haymarket Martyrs whose chief demand a couple of decades before the time of this film was for that same eight hour day) and a big wage increase. So the committee of capitalists and their hangers-on gave a blanket “no.” Said the hell with you to the strikers.
The aftermath of this refusal is where the real lessons of this film are to drawn. Needless to say the capitalists were willing, more than willing to starve the workers into submission (the scenes of some workers pawning off their worldly possession for food for the kids, for themselves are quite moving).But not only were they willing to starve the mass of workers back to the factory but did everything in their power to break the strike by other means. First and foremost to send spies out to stir up trouble in order to get the class unity broken, then tried to get some weak-links to betray the movement from within, and if that didn’t work then try might and main to round up by any way possible the leaders of the strike in order to behead the movement. In the end though they were not above using their “Pharaohs,” their mounted cops and troops to suppress the whole thing. In the final scene after the cops and troops have done their murderous assaults on unarmed strikers the corpses spread out widely on the massacre field tell anybody who wasn’t sure about the role of the cops and troops in preserving the social order of the rulers all they need to know about the way the strike was defeated. 

From what I could gather from the last signboard (one which mentioned the Lena gold strike which was I believe was suppressed in 1912) the time period of this strike was between the 1905 revolution that went down in flames and the victorious revolution in 1917. The implications of the failure of the strike, of the need to take the state power, were thus through Eisenstein’s big lenses there for all to see. Hey, even if you don’t draw any political conclusions from this film just watch to see what they mean they say a picture sometimes is worth a thousand words. Eisenstein has a thousand such pictures that will fascinate and repel you.  

An Encore Presentation-The Big Sur Café- With The “King Of The Beats” Jean-bon Kerouac In Mind

An Encore Presentation-The Big Sur Café- With The “King Of The Beats” Jean-bon Kerouac In Mind  

From The Pen Of Zack James

Josh Breslin, as he drove in the pitch black night up California Highway 156 to connect with U.S. 101 and the San Francisco Airport back to Boston was thinking furious thought, fugitive thoughts about what had happened on this his umpteenth trip to California. Thoughts that would carry him to the  airport road and car rental return on arrival there and then after the swift airbus to his terminal the flight home to Logan and then up to his old hometown of Olde Saco to which he had recently returned. Returned after long years of what he called “shaking the dust of the old town” off his shoes like many a guy before him, and after too. But now along the road to the airport he had thought that it had been a long time since he had gotten up this early to head, well, to head anywhere.

He had in an excess of caution decided to leave at three o’clock in the morning from the hotel he had been staying at in downtown Monterrey near famous Cannery Row (romantically and literarily famous as a scene in some of John Steinbeck’s novels from the 1920s and 1930s, as a site of some of the stop-off 1950s “beat” stuff if for no other reason than the bus stopped there before you took a taxi to Big Sur or thumbed depending on your finances and as famed 1960s Pops musical locale where the likes of Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin rose to the cream on top although now just another tourist magnet complete with Steinbeck this and that for sullen shoppers and diners who found their way east of Eden) and head up to the airport in order to avoid the traffic jams that he had inevitably encountered on previous trips around farm country Gilroy (the garlic or onion capital of the world, maybe both, but you got that strong smell in any case), and high tech Silicon Valley where the workers are as wedded to their automobiles as any other place in America which he too would pass on the way up.

This excess of caution not a mere expression of an old man who is mired in a whole cycle of cautions from doctors to lawyers to ex-wives to current flame (Lana Malloy by name) since his flight was not to leave to fly Boston until about noon and even giving the most unusual hold-ups and delays in processings at the airport he would not need to arrive there to return his rented car until about ten. So getting up some seven hours plus early on a trip of about one hundred miles or so and normally without traffic snarls about a two hour drive did seem an excess of caution.

But something else was going on in Josh’s mind that pitch black night (complete with a period of dense fog about thirty miles up as he hit a seashore belt and the fog just rolled in without warnings) for he had had the opportunity to have avoided both getting up early and getting snarled in hideous California highway traffic by the expedient of heading to the airport the previous day and taken refuge in a motel that was within a short distance of the airport, maybe five miles when he checked on his loyalty program hotel site. Josh though had gone down to Monterey after a writers’ conference in San Francisco which had ended a couple of days before in order travel to Big Sur and some ancient memories there had stirred something in him that he did not want to leave the area until the last possible moment so he had decided to stay in Monterrey and leave early in the morning for the airport.

That scheduled departure plan set Josh then got an idea in his head, an idea that had driven him many times before when he had first gone out to California in the summer of love, 1967 version, that he would dash to San Francisco to see the Golden Gate Bridge as the sun came up and then head to the airport. He had to laugh, as he threw an aspirin down his throat and then some water to wash the tablet down in order to ward off a coming migraine headache that the trip, that this little trip to Big Sur that he had finished the day before, the first time in maybe forty years he had been there had him acting like a young wild kid again.        

Funny as well that only a few days before he had been tired, very tired a condition that came on him more often of late as one of the six billion “growing old sucks” symptoms of that process, after the conference. Now he was blazing trails again, at least in his mind. The conference on the fate of post-modern writing in the age of the Internet with the usual crowd of literary critics and other hangers-on in tow to drink the free liquor and eat the free food had been sponsored by a major publishing company, The Globe Group. He had written articles for The Blazing Sun when the original operation had started out as a shoestring alternative magazine in the Village in about 1968, had started out as an alternative to Time, Life, Newsweek, Look, an alternative to all the safe subscription magazines delivered to leafy suburban homes and available at urban newsstands for the nine to fivers of the old world for those who, by choice, had no home, leafy or otherwise, and no serious work history.

Or rather the audience pitched to had no fixed abode, since the brethren were living some vicarious existences out of a knapsack just like Josh and his friends whom he collected along the way had been doing when he joined Captain Crunch’s merry pranksters (small case to distinguish them from the more famous Ken Kesey mad monk Merry Pranksters written about in their time by Tom Wolfe and Hunter Thompson) the first time he came out and found himself on Russian Hill in Frisco town looking for dope and finding this giant old time yellow brick road converted school bus parked in a small park there and made himself at home, after they made him welcome (including providing some sweet baby James dope that he had been searching for since the minute he hit town).

Still the iterant, the travelling nation hippie itinerants of the time to draw a big distinction from the winos, drunks, hoboes, bums and tramps who populated the “jungle” camps along railroad tracks, arroyos, river beds and under bridges who had no use for magazines or newspapers except as pillows against a hard night’s sleep along a river or on those unfriendly chairs at the Greyhound bus station needed, wanted to know what was going on in other parts of “youth nation,” wanted to know what new madness was up, wanted to know where to get decent dope, and who was performing and where in the acid-rock etched night (groups like the Dead, the Doors, the Airplane leading the pack then).

That magazine had long ago turned the corner back to Time/Life/Look/Newsweek land but the publisher Mac McDowell who still sported mutton chop whiskers as he had in the old days although these days he has them trimmed by his stylist, Marcus, at a very steep price at his mansion up in Marin County always invited him out, and paid his expenses, whenever there was a conference about some facet of the 1960s that the younger “post-modernist”  writers in his stable (guys like Kenny Johnson the author of the best-seller Thrill  were asking about as material for future books about the heady times they had been too young, in some cases way to young to know about personally or even second-hand). So Mac would bring out wiry, wily old veterans like Josh to spice up what after all would be just another academic conference and to make Mac look like some kind of hipster rather than the balding “sell-out" that he had become (which Josh had mentioned in his conference presentation but which Mac just laughed at, laughed at just as long as he can keep that Marin mansion. Still Josh felt he provided some useful background stuff now that you can find lots of information about that 1960s “golden age” (Mac’s term not his) to whet your appetite on Wikipedia or more fruitfully by going on YouTube where almost all the music of the time and other ephemera can be watched with some benefit.

Despite Josh’s tiredness, and a bit of crankiness as well when the young kid writers wanted to neglect the political side, the Vietnam War side, the rebellion against parents side of what the 1960s had been about for the lowdown on the rock festival, summer of love, Golden Gate Park at sunset loaded with dope and lack of hubris side, he decided to take a few days to go down to see Big Sur once again. He figured who knew when he would get another chance and at the age of seventy-two the actuarial tables were calling his number, or wanted to. He would have preferred to have taken the trip down with Lana, a hometown woman, whom he had finally settled in with up in Olde Saco after three, count them, failed marriages, a parcel of kids most of whom turned out okay, plenty of college tuitions and child support after living in Watertown just outside of Boston for many years.

Lana a bit younger than he and not having been “washed clean” as Josh liked to express the matter in the hectic 1960s and not wanting to wait around a hotel room reading a book or walking around Frisco alone while he attended the conference had begged off on the trip, probably wisely although once he determined to go to Big Sur and told her where he was heading she got sort of wistful. She had just recently read with extreme interest about Big Sur through her reading of Jack Kerouac’s 1960s book of the same name and had asked Josh several times before that if they went to California on a vacation other than San Diego they would go there. The long and short of that conversation was a promise by Josh to take her the next time, if there was a next time (although he did not put the proposition in exactly those terms).            

Immediately after the conference Josh headed south along U.S. 101 toward Monterrey where he would stay and which would be his final destination that day since he would by then be tired and it would be nighttime coming early as the November days got shorter. He did not want to traverse the Pacific Coast Highway (California 1 for the natives) at night since he had forgotten his distance glasses, another one of those six billion reasons why getting old sucks. Had moreover not liked to do that trip along those hairpin turns which the section heading toward Big Sur entailed riding the guardrails even back in his youth since one time having been completely stoned on some high-grade Panama Red he had almost sent a Volkswagen bus over the top when he missed a second hairpin turn after traversing the first one successfully. So he would head to Monterrey and make the obligatory walk to Cannery Row for dinner and in order to channel John Steinbeck and the later “beats” who would stop there before heading to fallout Big Sur.

The next morning Josh left on the early side not being very hungry after an excellent fish dinner at Morley’s a place that had been nothing but a hash house diner in the old days where you could get serviceable food cheap because the place catered to the shore workers and sardine factory workers who made Cannery Row famous, or infamous, when it was a working Row. He had first gone there after reading about the place in something Jack Kerouac wrote and was surprised that the place actually existed, had liked the food and the prices and so had gone there a number of times when his merry pranksters and other road companions were making the obligatory Frisco-L.A. runs up and down the coast. These days Morley’s still had excellent food but perhaps you should bring a credit card with you to insure you can handle the payment and avoid “diving for pearls” as a dish-washer to pay off your debts.      

As Josh started up the engine of his rented Acura, starting up on some of the newer cars these days being a matter of stepping on the brake and then pushing a button where the key used to go in this keyless age, keyless maybe a metaphor of the age as well, he had had to ask the attendant at the airport how to start the thing since his own car was a keyed-up Toyota of ancient age, he began to think back to the old days when he would make this upcoming run almost blind-folded. That term maybe a metaphor for that age. He headed south to catch the Pacific Coast Highway north of Carmel and thought he would stop at Point Lobos, the place he had first encountered the serious beauty of the Pacific Coast rocks and ocean wave splash reminding him of back East in Olde Saco, although more spectacular. Also the place when he had first met Moonbeam Sadie.

He had had to laugh when he thought about that name and that woman since a lot of what the old days, the 1960s had been about were tied up with his relationship to that woman, the first absolutely chemically pure version of a “hippie chick” that he had encountered. At that time Josh had been on the Captain Crunch merry prankster yellow brick road bus for a month or so and a couple of days before they had started heading south from Frisco to Los Angeles to meet up with a couple of other yellow brick road buses where Captain Crunch knew some kindred. As they meandered down the Pacific Coast Highway they would stop at various places to take in the beauty of the ocean since several of the “passengers” had never seen the ocean or like Josh had never seen the Pacific in all its splendor.

In those days, unlike now when the park closes at dusk as Josh found out, you could park your vehicle overnight and take in the sunset and endlessly listen to the surf splashing up to rocky shorelines until you fell asleep. So when their bus pulled into the lot reserved for larger vehicles there were a couple of other clearly “freak” buses already there. One of them had Moonbeam as a “passenger” whom he would meet later that evening when all of “youth nation” in the park decided to have a dope- strewn party. Half of the reason for joining up on bus was for a way to travel, for a place to hang your hat but it was also the easiest way to get on the dope trail since somebody, usually more than one somebody was “holding.” And so that night they partied, partied hard. 

About ten o’clock Josh high as a kite from some primo hash saw a young woman, tall, sort of skinny (he would find out later she had not been so slim previously except the vagaries of the road food and a steady diet of “speed” had taken their toll), long, long brown hair, a straw hat on her head, a long “granny” dress and barefooted the very picture of what Time/Life/Look would have used as their female “hippie” poster child to titillate their middle-class audiences coming out of one of the buses. She had apparently just awoken, although that seemed impossible given the noise level from the collective sound systems and the surf, and was looking for some dope to level her off and headed straight to Josh.

Josh had at that time long hair tied in a ponytail, at least that night, a full beard, wearing a cowboy hat on his head, a leather jacket against the night’s cold, denim blue jeans and a pair of moccasins not far from what Time/Life/Look would have used as their male “hippie” poster child to titillate their middle-class audiences so Moonbeam’s heading Josh’s way was not so strange. Moreover Josh was holding a nice stash of hashish. Without saying a word Josh passed the hash pipe to Moonbeam and by that mere action started a “hippie” romance that would last for the next several months until Moonbeam decided she was not cut out for the road, couldn’t take the life, and headed back to Lima, Ohio to sort out her life.

But while they were on their “fling” Moonbeam taught “Cowboy Jim,” her new name for him, many things. Josh thought it was funny thinking back how wedded to the idea of changing their lives they were back then including taking new names, monikers, as if doing so would create the new world by osmosis or something. He would have several other monikers like the “Prince of Love,” the Be-Bop Kid (for his love of jazz and blues), and Sidewalk Slim (for always writing something in chalk wherever he had sidewalk space to do so) before he left the road a few years later and stayed steady with his journalism after that high, wide, wild life lost it allure as the high tide of the 1960s ebbed and people drifted back to their old ways. But Cowboy Jim was what she called Josh and he never minded her saying that.

See Moonbeam really was trying to seek the newer age, trying to find herself as they all were more or less, but also let her better nature come forth. And she did in almost every way from her serious study of Buddhism, her yoga (well before that was fashionable among the young), and her poetry writing. But most of all in the kind, gentle almost Quaker way that she dealt with people, on or off drugs, the way she treated her Cowboy. Josh had never had such a gentle lover, never had such a woman who not only tried to understand herself but to understand him. More than once after she left the bus (she had joined the Captain Crunch when the bus left Point Lobos a few days later now that she was Cowboy’s sweetheart) he had thought about heading to Lima and try to work something out but he was still seeking something out on the Coast that held him back until her memory faded a bit and he lost the thread of her).          

Yeah, Point Lobos held some ancient memories and that day the surf was up and Mother Nature was showing one and all who cared to watch just how relentless she could be against the defenseless rocks and shoreline. If he was to get to Big Sur though he could not dally since he did not want to be taking that hairpin stretch at night. So off he went. Nothing untoward happened on the road to Big Sur, naturally he had to stop at the Bixby Bridge to marvel at the vista but also at the man-made marvel of traversing that canyon below with this bridge in 1932. Josh though later that it was not exactly correct that nothing untoward happened on the road to Big Sur but that was not exactly true for he was white-knuckled driving for that several mile stretch where the road goes up mostly and there are many hairpin turns with no guardrail and the ocean is a long way down. He thought he really was becoming an old man in his driving so cautiously that he had veer off to the side of the road to let faster cars pass by. In the old days he would drive the freaking big ass yellow brick road school bus along that same path and think nothing of it except for a time after that Volkswagen almost mishap. Maybe he was dope-brave then but it was disconcerting to think how timid he had become.

Finally in Big Sur territory though nothing really untoward happen as he traversed those hairpin roads until they finally began to straighten out near Molera State Park and thereafter Pfeiffer Beach. Funny in the old days there had been no creek to ford at Molera but the river had done its work over forty years through drought and downpour so in order to get to the ocean about a mile’s walk away Josh had to take off his running shoes and socks to get across the thirty or forty feet of rocks and pebbles to the other side (and of course the same coming back a pain in the ass which he would have taken in stride back then when he shoe of the day was the sandal easily slipped off and on) but well worth the effort even if annoying since the majestic beauty of that rock-strewn beach was breath-taking a much used word and mostly inappropriate but not this day. Maybe global warming or maybe just the relentless crush of the seas on a timid waiting shoreline but most of the beach was un-walkable across the mountain of stones piled up and so he took the cliff trail part of the way before heading back the mile to his car in the parking lot to get to Pfeiffer Beach before too much longer. 

Pfeiffer Beach is another one of those natural beauties that you have to do some work to get, almost as much work as getting to Todo El Mundo further up the road when he and his corner boys from Olde Saco had stayed for a month after they had come out to join him on the bus once he informed them that they needed to get to the West fast because all the world was changing out there. This work entailed not walking to the beach but by navigating a big car down the narrow one lane rutted dirt road two miles to the bottom of the canyon and the parking lot since now the place had been turned into a park site as well. The road was a white-knuckles experience although not as bad as the hairpins on the Pacific Coast Highway but as with Molera worth the effort, maybe more so since Josh could walk that wind-swept beach although some of the cross-currents were fierce when the ocean tide slammed the defenseless beach and rock formation. A couple of the rocks had been ground down so by the relentless oceans that donut holes had been carved in them.                          

Here Josh put down a blanket on a rock so that he could think back to the days when he had stayed here, really at Todo el Mundo but there was no beach there just some ancient eroded cliff dwellings where they had camped out and not be bothered  so everybody would climb on the bus which they would park by the side of the road on Big Sur Highway and walk down to Pfeiffer Beach those easy then two miles bringing the day’s rations of food, alcohol and drugs (not necessarily in that order) in rucksacks and think thing nothing of the walk and if they were too “wasted” (meaning drunk or high) they would find a cave and sleep there. That was the way the times were, nothing unusual then although the sign at the park entrance like at Point Lobos (and Molera) said overnight parking and camping were prohibited. But that is the way these times are.

Josh had his full share of ancient dreams come back to him that afternoon. The life on the bus, the parties, the literary lights who came by who had known Jack Kerouac , Allan Ginsberg, Lawrence Ferlinghetti and the remnant of beats who had put the place on the map as a cool stopping point close enough to Frisco to get to in a day but ten thousand miles from city cares and woes, the women whom he had loved and who maybe loved him back although he/they never stayed together long enough to form any close relationship except for Butterfly Swirl and that was a strange scene. Strange because Butterfly was a surfer girl who was “slumming” on the hippie scene for a while and they had connected on the bus except she finally decided that the road was not for her just like Moonbeam, as almost everybody including Josh figured out in the end, and went back to her perfect wave surfer boy down in La Jolla after a few months.

After an afternoon of such memories Josh was ready to head back having done what he had set out to which was to come and dream about the old days when he thought about the reasons for why he had gone to Big Sur later that evening back at the hotel. He was feeling a little hungry and after again traversing that narrow rutted dirt road going back up the canyon he decided if he didn’t stop here the nearest place would be around Carmel about twenty-five miles away. So he stopped at Henry’s Café. The café next to the Chevron gas station and the Big Sur library heading back toward Carmel (he had to laugh given all the literary figures who had passed through this town that the library was no bigger than the one he would read at on hot summer days in elementary school with maybe fewer books in stock). Of course the place no longer was named Henry’s since he had died long ago but except for a few coats of paint on the walls and a few paintings of the cabins out back that were still being rented out the place was the same. Henry’s had prided itself on the best hamburgers in Big Sur and that was still true as Josh found out.

But good hamburgers (and excellent potato soup not too watery) are not what Josh would remember about the café or about Big Sur that day. It would be the person, the young woman about thirty who was serving them off the arm, was the wait person at the joint. As he entered she was talking on a mile a minute in a slang he recognized, the language of his 1960s, you know, “right on,” “cool,” “no hassle,” “wasted,” the language of the laid-back hippie life. When she came to take his order he was curious, what was her name and how did she pick up that lingo which outside of Big Sur and except among the, well, now elderly, in places like Soho, Frisco, Harvard Square, is like a dead language, like Latin or Greek.

She replied with a wicked smile that her name was Morning Blossom, didn’t he like that name. [Yes.] She had been born and raised in Big Sur and planned to stay there because she couldn’t stand the hassles (her term) of the cities, places like San Francisco where she had gone to school for a while at San Francisco State. Josh thought to himself that he knew what was coming next although he let Morning Blossom have her say. Her parents had moved to Big Sur in 1969 and had started home-steading up in the hills. They have been part of a commune before she was born but that was all over with by the time she was born and so her parents struggled on the land alone. They never left, and never wanted to leave. Seldom left Big Sur and still did not.

Josh said to himself, after saying wow, he had finally found one of the lost tribes that wandered out into the wilderness back in the 1960s and were never heard from again. And here they were still plugging away at whatever dream drove them back then. He and others who had chronicled in some way the 1960s had finally found a clue to what had happened to the brethren. But as he got up from the counter, paid his bill, and left a hefty tip, he though he still had that trip out here next time with Lana to get through. He was looking forward to that adventure now though.               

The Roots Is The Toots: The Music That Got The Generation Of ’68 Through The 1950s Red Scare Cold War Night- When The Sea Changed -With Elmore James’ Look On Yonder Wall In Mind

The Roots Is The Toots: The Music That Got The Generation Of ’68 Through The 1950s Red Scare Cold War Night- When The Sea Changed -With Elmore James’ Look On Yonder Wall In Mind  

Sketches From The Pen Of Frank Jackman

When The Sea Changed -With Elmore James’ Look On Yonder Wall In Mind  

Elmore James – Look On Yonder Wall Lyrics

Look on yonder wall and hand me down my walkin' cane
Look on yonder wall and hand me down my walkin' cane
I got me another woman, baby, yon' come your man

Look on yonder wall and hand me down my walkin' cane
Look on yonder wall and hand me down my walkin' cane
I got me another woman and, uhh, baby, yon' come your man

Your husband went to the war,
And you know it was tough, uhh
I don't know how many men he done killed,
But, I know he done killed enough.
Look on yonder wall and hand me down my walkin' cane
Look on yonder wall and hand me down my walkin' cane
I got me another woman, now baby, yon' come your man

Oh yeah
I love you baby, but you just can't treat me right,
Spend all my money and walk the streets all night
But, look on yonder wall and hand me down my walkin' cane
I got me another woman, and baby, yon' come your man
Look On Yonder Wall lyrics © GULF COAST MUSIC LLC
…who knows when he first began to notice the difference, notice that the music, his parents’ music, the stuff, as they constantly told him, that got them through the “Depression and the war,” (that Depression being the Great Depression of the 1930s when all hell broke loose and guys and gals were on the ropes, on the road, onto sometime they could never figure out and the war, World War II in which they slogged through or waited anxiously at home) on his ears. Of course they, his parents specifically, no question, and their kindred later designated the “greatest generation” by younger fawning pundits and now considered accepted wisdom as they have begun to die off and no longer play on center stage although this sketch is about his generation, the self-designated generation of ’68, so we will let that issue pass. The parents having gained that distinction for having suffered the pangs of hunger, displacement, the struggle for survival, the train smoke and broken dreams heading west (hell maybe in any direction that was not where they lonesome, separate, at luck’s end were) looking for work, looking for a new start in the 1930s. Then gathering themselves up when the war clouds turned into live ammunition lined up to fight whatever evil had reared its head in this wicked old world in the 1940s, or waited at home fretfully reading the casualty lists as they were posted in home towns across America.

Of course like every generation since they invented that term “generation” and put some special onus on each one going back to Adam and Eve, maybe before, they had their own tribal music to get them through the tough spots, to dance to or just to find some secluded spot and listen to. And that would have been fine with him that secluded spot idea (although at the first grating on the ears time he was too young to be aware of what that secluded spot stuff portended but he picked the idea up easily later when he came of age, girl noticing came of age) except he had to face that big old family RCA console radio plucked right down in the living room every day blaring away while his mother did her housework, his father listened after work, and  they both got all dreamy together over WJDA every Saturday night when for five hours, five hours count them, the station endlessly played “the songs that got them through the Depression and the war.”  Jesus.             

Still although it was a daily plague on his ears he was not sure when he noticed that he had had enough of silky-voiced Nat King Cole all smooth and mellow and ready to put him to sleep (or worse), the Inkpots spouting off  and gumming things up by talking the lyrics for half the song on If I Didn’t Care or his mother’s favorite I’ll Get By (the song she said that got her through the war what with her working as a clerk down at the Naval Depot in Hullsville at the time his father was Marine island-hopping in the Pacific and while she fretted over those casualty list postings in front of the Daily Gazette office), Bing Crosby (not the 1930s Bing of Yip Harburg’s Brother, Can You Spare A Dime but the later pretty-boy mellow White Christmas stuff) and the like. He had moreover become tired unto death of the cutesy Andrews Sisters and their antic bugle boy, rum and Coca-Cola, under the apple tree music, tired of Frank (later called the “chairman of the boards” but still way too placid for him although he remembered his mother showing him a photograph of perfectly sane looking girls in bobby-sox swooning all over the place to get next to him at some theater in New York City ), Frankie (Lane okay) and Dean (before Jerry), tired of Tony fly me to the moon, Benny and his very tired clarinet Buddha swing, the whole Harry James/Jimmy Dorsey/Tommy Dorsey/Duke/Count/Earl/King and whatever other royalty they could latch onto big band sound and even blessed Charley/Dizzy/Miles be-bop, be-bop jazz (stuff that he would later, way later, crave when he went “beat” joined, joined late that big beat fellahin world Jack Kerouac was always going on and on about). Yes, yeah, tired unto death craving some sound that moved him, some sound that he could sway his rigid locked-up boyish man hips to. A break-out for sure.

Maybe it had been because he was showing serious signs of growing pains, of just being a pain like his parents had taken to calling him more and more often lately, and just wanted to be by himself up in his room (as the oldest boy he got the single room once the family moved to the new three bedroom house from that cramped apartment over on Elmer Street where all three boys had to sleep in one room and there were more fights over that fact mercifully done now) and let the world pass by until his growing pains passed by. It started one day in 1956 as far as he could remember the first time that he asked his parents to turn off the radio, or turn off WJDA, or turn on this new station that one of the kids at school was talking about coming out of Boston, WMEX the call letters he thought. This kid, Richie, a good kid who knew a lot about music swore that one of the commercials on the show was about Max’s Drive-In over on the other side of North Adamsville and a place where his parents had taken him and his brothers for burgers and fries which if you could believe this was the new “hot” spot because Max had installed speakers in each stall so that every hip guy and swaying gal could listen to WMEX while munching on a burger or swallowing a French fry. Listen to stuff that was Frank-Benny-Duke-Bing-less. Something was in the wind.    

Something may have been in the wind but he was still filled with all kinds of teen angst and alienation (no, he did not use those terms to describe his condition and only learned the terms much later after much turmoil, a few beefs with the parents, and after reading a Time magazine article about kids today going to hell in hand basket what with hanging around corners in white tee-shirts and snarls, doing crazy stuff to pass the time of day and listening although he was foggy on the music they described but it sounded interesting which is why he picked up the article from his father’s chair in the first place). Mainly though what was on his mind had been about his growing so fast, fast and awkward, too fast and awkward to figure out what this new found interest in girls was all about. Last year, last year before his parents’ music grated on his ears, they were nothing but giggly girls and a bother but now he could see, well, he could see that they might be interesting to talk to if he could find something to say. Could maybe ease his way in with some music talk like that good guy Richie did. All he knew was that life was tough and made tougher by his parents always saying no, no in principle like there was no other possible answer.    

But here is the funny part his parents, like he found out later when he figured out how parents worked, parents always do and had worked it out as a science, switched up on kids. See one day to placate him (or, heaven forbid, to keep him out of sight and therefore out of mind) they, his usually clueless parents, had gone to the local Radio Shack store and bought him a transistor radio so that he would be able listen to music up in his room rather than lie around the living room all night after his parents had gone to bed changing the dials, their dial settings, looking for some other stations, looking for WMEX to see if Richie was right about Max’s Drive-In, on that damn old family RCA radio which had formed the center piece of the room before the television had displaced it. This transistor radio was a new gizmo, small and battery-powered, which allowed the average teenager to put the thing up to his or her ear and listen to whatever he or she wanted to listen to away from prying eyes. Hail, hail.

And that little technological feat saved his life, or at least help save it. The saving part was his finding out of the blue on one late Saturday night Buster Brim’s Blues Bonanza out of WRKO in Chicago. Apparently, although he was ignorant of the scientific aspects of the procedure, the late night air combined with the closing down of certain dawn to dusk radio stations left the airwaves clear at times to let him receive that long distance infusion. Buster was a mad man monk talking in a drawl like maybe he was from down south, talking jive, talking a line of patter with sing-song words, words that he would later recognize as from the be-bop vocabulary pushed into the orbit of this rock and roll thing some DJ invented (DJs the guys who spun the platters-played the records for the squares who don’t know) for the new sound that was putting a big crimp in vanilla popular music. He immediately sensed that the music emanating from that show had a totally different beat from his parents’ music, a beat he would later find came out of some old-time primordial place when we all were born, out of some Africa cradle of civilization. Then though all he knew was that the beat spoke to his angst, spoke to his alienation from about twelve different things, spoke to that growing pains thing. Made him, well, happy, when he snapped his fingers to some such beat. What he was unsure of, and what he also did not found out about until later, was whether this would last or was just a passing fancy like those Andrews Sisters his parents were always yakking about.

What he didn’t know really was that though that little gizmo he had been present at the birth of rock and roll. Was right at the place where that be-bopping sound was turning into a sway by white guys from the farms down in Tennessee, getting refined by some black guys from the Delta, being turned out by some urban hep-cats from New Jack City and anybody else who could get his hips moving to the new time beat. Geez, and all he thought he was doing was snapping his fingers until they were sore to Elmore James’ Look On Yonder Wall…                

[Sam Lowell, the “he” of the sketch to give him a name, although after looking the story over it really could have been an almost universal teen story in the 1950s from all accounts including that quota of angst and alienation and the vast number of transistor radios sold to clueless parents to placate their unruly tribe, later in life, the way I heard the story, actually became enthralled with the music of his parents’ generation for a while. Kind of saw that they needed that “no ripples” “sentimental journey” waiting by the mailbox, I’ll get by, if I didn’t care” music to get through their tough spots. Of course he also had had his early 1960s folk minute affair, his later 1970s outlaw country cowboy minute and his 1990s be-bop jazz revival so it is hard to tell how deep or how sincerely he imbibed that parents’ music moment. He told a friend of mine, a friend who told me the original story, that whatever else he was still a “child of rock and roll” when the deal went down. Oh, except now via iPods rather than transistor radios.]   

Shady Lady In Three-Quarters Time-That Inkwood Dame- Marlene Dietrich’s “Stage Fright” (1950)-A Film Review

Shady Lady In Three-Quarters Time-That Inkwood Dame- Marlene Dietrich’s “Stage Fright” (1950)-A Film Review

DVD Review

By William Bradley

Stage Struck, starring Marlene Dietrich, Jane Wyman, Richard Todd, Michael Wilding, directed by Sir Alfred Hitchcock, 1950 

[Normally a great if sullied* director like Sir Alfred Hitchcock would be cited in the headline but since this review links tangentially two aspects of Marlene Dietrich’s career she gets top billing. 

* “Sullied” since earlier this year, 2017, during the height of the sexual harassment and sexual crimes by high level powerful Hollywood men and later others in high positions it was revealed by Tippi Hendron who most famously starred in the Hitchcock classic The Birds that he had incessantly sexually harassed her and moreover ruined her career after she had rebuffed him. Greg Green]

Sometimes I can’t figure out the how or why of our new site manager Greg Green’s madness in making assignments. Or in the case here linking two different pieces of work only tangentially related together. Here’s what I mean. A few months ago when I was first hired on by Greg to bring in younger writers and give them decent assignments I happened to be headed to Washington, D.C. on other business when he asked me to stop off at the National Gallery of Art on the National Mall and view and review the big Vermeer and friends exhibit (not the official museum title but that is what it is about) of 16th and 17th Dutch and Flemish art. (That “younger writers” deserves some additional comment since I am a little older at twenty-eight than the youngest writer Kenny Jacobs but almost two decades younger that what under the old regime, sorry I can’t mention his name under an agreement that we would not do so with Greg, were considered young writers against the old guard who have hovered around since the 1960s-and apparently never got over it-the 1960s that is.)

I did as asked so and did what I thought was a good review given that I didn’t know a damn thing about the subject. The subject of Dutch and Flemish painting which mostly seemed boring and repetitious around family portraits and infinite scenes of fruits, vegetables and game not art in general where my tastes run to the Abstract Expressionists who I don’t know much about either but appeal to my eye. Expressed my like/dislike views and left it at that. I did make a mistake in citing another writer here, an old-timer, Frank Jackman, and his quasi –Marxist views on art and we went back and forth about it as he earnestly tried to “teach” me about this ancient painters and their “milieu,” Frank’s word. You can read that exchange elsewhere under the archival title When Capitalist Was Young….  

That was all well and good. What I had also done on that trip as well was sneak after my business was over to the National Portrait Gallery since it stays open until seven to view some American art that I was interested in when I noticed that there was a photographic display on the career of well-known (and much “drag queen”- imitated) German turned American citizen actress Marlene Dietrich. I thereafter mentioned that exhibit in passing to Greg who must have put that fact in the back of his mind because when he had finished previewing the film under review Stage Fright a thriller by director Alfred Hitchcock starring Ms. Dietrich he cornered me by the water cooler and gave me the assignment. Again I knew nada about Ms. Dietrich other than what I had read at the exhibit not being either a fan of Mr. Hitchcock, hers, or of old time movies. So here it is as good as I can make it without much experience with this kind of film.                              

Marlene Dietrich had a certain style about her, a certain independent don’t give a damn attitude which permeated her role as Charlotte Inkwood, a chanteuse and actress who had both a lover, Johnny, played Richard Todd and a husband she did not much like, wanted to see dead. So, yes, didn’t like much is right if understated like her role here.     That is the drift of the storyline, with that not “much like” unseen husband lying on the living room floor. The first twist and turn of the film which drives it in a certain direction revolved around the very clear implication that Charlotte had done the deed. It sure looked like it as every emotive breath she took when she told lover-boy Johnny about it kept saying guilty as hell. Also in her apparent duplicity looked like she had used Johnny to cover her tracks and make him the fall guy.        

Enter Eve, played by Jane Wyman, a friend of Johnny’s who thought she was in love with him and did everything she could to hide him and who was bewitched by his story that Charlotte had done the deed. Including producing a telltale and fatal bloodstained dress she had allegedly worn to do the deed. By hook or by crook to save darling Johnny Eve directly confronted Charlotte via a ruse as her temporary dresser, an institution in the theater world. Enter Detective Smith, played by Michael Wilding, who turns Eve’s head away romantically from Johnny who made it very clear that he had gone over the edge for Charlotte.

Meanwhile this Smith and his fellow police officers are looking high and low for Johnny boy. Not getting anyway especially since Eve, and her family, not suspecting anything untoward of him were keeping him a step or two ahead of the law. With his help. As things moved toward a climax, toward the capture of on the run Johnny it was revealed via another ruse by the coppers that Johnny, under Charlotte’s cunning bidding had actually killed dear sweet Mr. Inkwood. This revelation occurred while both he and Eve are hiding under the stage of the theater that Charlotte played at. Oh no, Eve was a goner. Not so fast since the clever Ms. Eve was able to put herself out of danger and old Johnny got his just desserts. Of course Charlotte will get hers as well taking as Sandy Salmon says quoting Sam Lowell the big step-off. 

I don’t know if this is a big time Dietrich work although she certainly could emote when the deal went down, could act whatever she needed to act to stay out of the clutches of the law. Perhaps know it all Frank Jackman will give me the same working over he gave me on those freaking Dutch and Flemish painters who grabbed up the great art when they ruled the roost and “teach” me what is what about the legacy of Ms. Dietrich.        

In Boston January 27th-Do It Like Durham-Taking Down Conferate Monuments-A Forum