Thursday, August 30, 2012

Good Intentions

It has heated up a little, but that's no excuse.  I had the best intentions of getting to work on my To-Do list.  A cool-down period is mandatory after coming back from the barn, and I made the mistake of turning on the TV.  TCM has been showcasing great actresses.  I got hooked on Ava Gardner on Tuesday and yesterday was Ingrid Bergman's turn.  I couldn't begin to count the number of times I've seen "Gaslight," and I never tire of it.

My love affair with classic movies was fostered by my mother, who came to California in the 1930s during the Great Depression.  Movie tickets were a dime and it was a way to escape from harsh reality for awhile.  Even when I was a kid, movies played all day and night and you could see the cartoons and a double feature as many times as you wanted for just the one price of admission (in my time, that was fifty cents).  Hollywood was mecca, and movie stars were gods and goddesses to my mother.  Santa Anita racetrack opened in 1934, and Mother worked as a waitress in the coffee shop.  She loved to tell of the actors who came to her station, big names of the day like Bing Crosby (an investor in the track), Barbara Stanwyck and her then-husband, the handsome Robert Taylor.  Mother even got into the movies once as an extra in a crowd scene, fleeing from a burning circus tent.  She and I would re-enact our favorite movies at home, taking turns playing the good or bad guys.

I'm having such a good time introducing another generation to classic films by loaning my collection to Kellan and William.  They've enjoyed early Cary Grant and Joan Fontaine in "Suspicion," had never seen Lawrence Olivier, laughed at William Powell in "My Man Godfrey."  They borrow three movies one week and trade them for another three the next.

Today will be a little more productive.  I just won't turn on the television.

1 comment:

Kathryn said...

Bing Crosby was either quite a fan or a smart investor, or both, as we live not far from the Del Mar Racetrack, and I knew that he had a part in establishing it , but didn't know until just now (Thank you, Google!) that Pat O'Brien, Oliver Hardy, Jimmy Durante, and car dealer and owner of Seabiscuit, Charles S. Howard, built it in 1937. Ah....the Hollywood glory days. Sounds like you could start another business - Nostalgic Netflix of the North!