My recent blog posts have been ladened with dreary accounts of Tennessee snowstorms and dangerous ice. As a change of pace, I'm turning my attention to Hollywood. Glitz.. The Oscars. And the time I crashed the Oscars when I was eighteen.
Readers of my previous blog Lone Star Concerto have heard the story before. This is for those who didn't.
The 87th Academy Award extravaganza was held last Sunday and my interest was minimal. When I was young and lived in Hollywood I was obsessed with the Oscars and knew every minute detail of the entire procedure. I loved Hollywood and was completely caught up in the stardust.
Those days now seem like a different era on a different planet. Here in a modest shack on a frozen Tennessee mountain, I'm about as far away from Tinseltown glitz as I could possibly get. I miss my turbulent, exciting youth. I miss Southern California. But I've moved on.
Every year, the entire concept of the Oscars seems more and more trite and irrelevant. Despite all the media hype, the true golden era of Hollywood is long gone - and glamour, as it once was, is nearly dead and buried.
Old Hollywood, of course, was tainted and only had a grand illusion - but the illusion was created with style and panache. Most of the glamour was genuine. Most of the stars had at least some degree of talent and class.
Nowadays, trash and crass have replaced class. The Academy Award ceremony has diminished into nothing more than a political format and an opportunity for drug-glazed gaudily-attired Hollywood Bigwigs to thumb their noses at us and symbolically pat each other on the ass.
Today the term star is used much too loosely. Everybody is a star. Motion pictures come and go so quickly that they leave little impact. It seems like movies are released in theaters on Monday and become available on DVD by Friday. Soon they're completely forgotten.
Who the heck can remember last year's Oscar winners?
Jon - you're living in the past. You're getting old and cynical. Glamour isn't dead. Hollywood is still alive.
Wrong, Kemo Sabe. Hollywood is on a respirator, waiting for somebody to pull the plug. The golden past will never be resuscitated.
So, what's my take on last Sunday's Oscars?
I'm in a rotten mood, so this is going to be vicious.
First of all, who the hell designed the sets? Looked like an explosion of leftover Christmas decorations from the K Mart "reduced item" bin.
Doogie Howser as host????
I always wondered who could be worse than Ellen Degenerate. Oops, I mean DeGeneres. Well, they found him. Neil Patrick Harris is a mediocre actor (at best), can't sing, and isn't funny. As the host of a major award show he didn't hold my interest for thirty seconds. Not even when he appeared in his Fruit of the Looms. What the heck did he stuff in his crotch? A pair of socks??
His body looks fake - - like he had lypo suction, or some of his ribs removed.
Well, I'll give him one thing - - I envy his flat stomach.
more of Doogie
than we really wanted to know
Let's use an openly gay person as the host. It'll be politically correct and Hollywood will blow a fairydust fart in the face of the unsuspecting public.
What's the matter, Jon? Are you some kind of homophobe?
Hey,bucko, call me that again and I'll slap you silly with my hanky. Then I'll deck you with my signed copy of Tales of the City.
If I ever revealed the kind of debauchery in which I indulged when I lived in Hollywood it would make Oscar Wilde faint - - and it would make Doogie Howser and his husband look like rank amatures.
Of course, the Hollywood libs never fail to use a public moment as an opportunity to force-feed us their personal agendas.
Patricia Arquette bitching about the fact that women are underpaid.
"I paid more money to my dog walker than I got for Boyhood," she complained.
Here's a flash, sweetheart: most of us plebeians can't afford a dog walker.
Sean Penn, putting his foot in his mouth......but we're used to that....
And John Travolta - nuzzling up to Idina Menzel in a feeble attempt to pretend he's not gay.
Three hours into the agonizing Oscar Ordeal, Lady Gaga appears out of nowhere, waving her tattooed arms, and bursts into a medley tribute to The Sound of Music. She's no Julie Andrews, but she saved the night nevertheless. She does have talent and.....well, class.
So, what's all this about your affair with Oscar, Jon?
My first encounter with Oscar night is my favorite, because I managed to really get up-close and personal. That was way back when the Academy Awards used to be held at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion of the L.A.Music Center.
The Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, L.A. Music Center
I was eighteen-years-old and a helluva lot more brash and adventurous than I am now. To shorten a very lengthy story, I managed to sneak into the Music Center (I was very familiar with it) on Oscar night and watch part of the show.
How did you sneak in, Jon?
I was familiar with every aspect of the Music Center. And I was fast. I used a side door that was a musician's entrance. Security was lax and I had no trouble at all. I sat way in the back and only stayed for about fifteen minutes. I'm sure I could have stayed longer but I was fearful of being caught and tossed out on my ass.
Later that night I befriended the chauffeur of actress Helen Hayes and watched the rest of the Award show on a small TV in her limousine. Afterwards I met numerous stars, including Sammy Davis jr., George Hamilton and his then-wife Alana. Sammy Davis was extremely nice. Hamilton was somewhat of a snob.
This was an extremely abbreviated account of a long and memorable night.
Several years later, when I was more established in Hollywood and knew some quasi big-shots, I attended a private post-Academy Award party at a posh mansion (very near where Burt Reynolds lived). Courtesy of too many drinks and drugs, I wound up having sex with someone under a grand piano in the library! Not one of my proudest moments, but reckless fun nevertheless. Kinda like an Academy Award bonus.....
I have numerous other personal stories about Oscar night, but I'll spare you. At least for now.
A rare (and pretty bad) photo of me
when I first went to Hollywood.
I was twenty years old and should have
been shot for wearing that shirt (and Billy Jack hat).
I had "crashed" the Oscars a few years earlier
when I was eighteen.