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Monday, January 08, 2007

I'm sitting in my office...

reminiscing while holding my childhood minolta AUTOPAK-8 D6 super 8 camera. I made over 20 films with this camera back in the early and mid '70's. My brother was often the star. The REELZ channel noticed it on my desk when they did their profile on me a few days ago. I explained its importance to me.

I told them about one of my favorite films I made called "The Unknown Circus." Unfortunately due to some family problems, it somehow got lost when my brother and I were being bounced all over the place from relative to relative before we knew where we were going to wind up. My brother was 8 and I was 10. We were constantly lonely as kids. I use to put my brother on the handle bars of my green "let the sunshine in" huffy stingray and ride towards the sunset hoping we would find some magic there. We were a couple of "The Outsider's" like ragamuffins back then. The neighborhood use to pitty us, which I hated--"It's sad those very bright boys going through what they're going through, lets let 'em come on over and play some pool at our pool table," "Honey, those kid's are gonna rip my table!" "Sssh, let 'em play." Now, that I remember those days, they were actually very nice neighbors.

Anyhow, there was this park in Long Beach called Whaley Park. If you got up early enough, a fog would still be hanging over the park. It seemed sort of magical to me as kid. I'd get up before sunrise on a weekend, ride there and sit in the fog. This is when I came up with "The Unknown Circus." I had never heard of Brigadoon, but my little mind started to formulate a story of a travelling circus that travelled with the fog. Wouldn't it be cool to show a glimpse of the circus and reveal a little circus story before the fog disappears? I came up with a tragic love triangle. I grew up hearing Puccini so it made sense that that would be the first thing I thought for story...Clown loves Trapeze Girl, Trapeze Girl loves Tightrope Man, Clown hates Tightrope Man. It ends tragically when Clown shoots and kills Tightrope Man during his act, Trapeze Girl kills herself, leaving the Clown tragically all alone as the fog and the circus disappears. My brother played the tragic Clown...very Pagliacci around the edges. I remember how excited I was about my invention for a trick shot. I got a long solid wooden plank and large thick rope. I glued the rope to the side of the plank. When you walked on the plank it looked like you were walking on the rope. So, I coud have a shot with TIghtrope Walker doing his act while a gun rises in the foreground and fires. I remember being very proud of myself for figuring that out. Anyhow, those were the sort of films I was making with my brother back in the old Long Beach days.

It's odd and a little sad how things turned out.

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