[Note: I did something stupid with this post and I had to recover/re-create from a draft, so if you have been here before and it reads different, that would be why.]
I'm going to start my Day 1 coverage by talking about the night before.
Note to self, no. 1: Don't wait until the night before you leave to pack.
I decided that I needed a garment bag for the festival, because I was bringing a white dinner jacket and other nice clothes. We had one at the house, but it wasn't a very good one, so I decided to run out in get one. I went out at 8 o'clock at night to a Target was close to my house. Unfortunately, it was kind of a ghetto Target.
The Target was in what had been an ordinary mall when I was a kid, but by the mid-80s, all of the stores on the inside of the mall had gone away. Now it's sort of like a mall turned inside out, big box stores on the outside, and nothing on the inside. Anyway I was looking for a garment bag, Target had nothing. I tried the Ross next door; nothing again.
I tried the Kohls, this time they had a Samsonite garment bag for $469, but I couldn't imagine paying almost $500 for a single piece of luggage. They did have a second one for about $200, but even that seemed a bit high.
Note to self no. 2: If you're looking for a garment bag, don't go to the ghetto mall.
I had one more option, Walmart. They had a very simple one for $40, now, we're talking. I decided that garment bags must be made out of either gold of lead.
While I was in Walmart, I got the following text from my 15-year-old daughter, Jasmine, saying
Mom cheated on you with firemen, btw.
I thought about what the proper response should be. I toyed with the idea of saying, "That's okay, I cheated on her with a policeman." But I decided that that might break my little girl's pschye. I switched it to paramedic, so that at least she could infer the proper gender on my part. I still may have damaged her, but that might taken off the sting a little bit. We live on E Street, and it turns out that someone had called the Fire Department for the same number as our address on B Street, so my wife goes to the door and there are, for lack of a better term, a bunch of hot-ass firemen. Of course, my wife sees a bunch of hot firemen, and she is all, Well alrighty, then. This prompted my daughter's text. I just don't think she was prepared for what I sent back to her. But in the words of the immortal Samuel L. Jackson, If you don't like my answers, you should cease asking scary questions.
I got home some time after 9 o:clock and started packing. It was about midnight by the time I finished. I couple of weeks before TCMFF, I posted a Survival Guide Blog post on attending the Festival. Among other things I recommended emptying out the storage on your phone and camera. Well, I forgot to do that, so after packing, I still had to empty out my camera and phone. I knew I was in trouble when I started moving files and the first one said 45 minutes remaining.
Note to self no. 3: Don't wait until the night before you leave to empty your camera; see also note to self no. 1.
The end result was that I knew I was going to an event where sleep deficit was an issue, and I was staying up until 1:30 in the morning, the night before I left. Not a good idea.
|Taken from the train on the way to L.A.|
Easily the strangest thing that happened on the trip up was the ride on the Metro from Union Station to Hollywood. A young woman and her boyfriend got on. Now, she looked more or less normal, but the boyfriend, he was wearing vampire fangs. Not plastic ones, mind you, but real sharpened tooth caps, and roughly 12 noon. I just remember thinking I hope he's wearing sunscreen when he comes out of the station.
Jasmine in our room on an odd piece
of furniture she called a butt foof
Now my daughter and I were acting as Social Media Producers for TCMFF. This meant different things for different people. For my daughter and I, we were doing video interviews of people attending the festival, and she was doing reviews of all the films we saw on twitter with as much insight and snark as would fit in 140 characters. I did the following video explaining it:
Since we were doing the Social Media Producers thing, we had the opportunity to go to Wednesday afternoon Press Conference. It seemed like it covered a lot of the same ground as the Meet TCM panel on Thursday, but I can see that. A lot of the media people in attendance were bloggers and at heart classic movie fans in general and specifically TCM fans, so their concerns echoed those of the TCMFF attendees. I found it interesting that Charlie Tabesh (SVP of Programming of TCM) said that there was really no time period for a classic. I don't think there is anyone at TCM who wants to convert to showing newer films, but if there is a reason to look at newer films in the context of Classic Film, they will do so. I think the example he used was that if you had Katherine Hepburn as the star of the month, you would want to show, Love Affair, her last theatrical film.
Ben Mankiewicz during the press conference Photographer:
Edward T. Pio Roda ™ & © 2015 Turner Classic Movies.
A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved. Used with
Jasmine liked the press conference. I think she imagined it would by like a Comic-Con meeting of which she has attended many. Don't get me wrong, Comic-Con is a fun event. The planning meetings, not so much.
|Our first view of the Egyptian|
We ended up going past the Egyptian, and eventually made it to Hollywood Book and Poster, only to find it wasn't open. It was hard to tell whether it was just closed or out of business. There was a solid metal grate in front of the storefront. Of course, it not being open at 3 o:clock on a Wednesday afternoon was not a good sign. We continued on and ran into Beesknees, one of the #TCMParty regulars who along with her mother were attending TCMFF for the first time. We had never met, but she stopped me on the sidewalk and asked, if I was Chris. You tell people that you're a bald guy with a big white mustache who will be with a teenager with lots and lots of hair, and people recognize you. Go figure. They were headed to The Roosevelt, and we were going the opposite direction, so after chatting a while we went off our separate ways.
|Joan Blondell's star, had to get it.|
We ultimately made our way back to Musso and Frank's. It was about 4 o:clock by the time we got there, so we were able to get in right away. I didn't get the waiter's name, but it was the same guy that Ben Mankiewicz interviewed when TCM did their piece on Hollywood landmarks. The one thing that was unusual was that as we sat there looking at the menu. The waiter stood about four feet away facing the other direction. As soon as we put down our menus, he turned and took our orders. Now, I've had good service before, but I have never seen that. I ordered what quite possibly was the best pastrami sandwich I have ever had in my life.
Looking back at the Egyptian from Musso and Frank's,
another Hollywood landmark, the Pig'n'Whistle is on the right
Charlie Chaplin door that faces sidewalk
outside of The Jim Henson Company
|The Formosa at night, that truck must be going 150 mph|
Again, I decided to walk. I was really hungry, since I hadn't eaten since that pastrami sandwich at Musso and Frank's. Fortunately, In'N'Out Burgers was still open with a line out the door at about 1 am. I ended up getting a double protein style and a chocolate shake, and took it back to the room to eat.
Not a bad start.
TCMFF 2015 – Day 1 post