Thursday, January 29, 2009
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Friday, January 16, 2009
My Tribute To Actor Ricardo Montalban
Suave! Handsome! Elegant! Sophisticated!
These are just a few of the adjectives that can be invoked when describing the late actor Ricardo Montalban, who just passed away at age 88. His many and varied roles, which he handled most ably in each instance, included a matador who danced with Cyd Charisse in "Fiesta" (1947), a detective endeavoring to solve a murder in Boston in "Mystery Street"(1950), a Kabuki actor in "Sayonara"(1957), and a nefarious tycoon in "Naked Gun:From The Files of Police Squad"(1988).
Personally, I was especially impressed with a choice role he had as the guest murderer on TV's "Columbo" as well as the part of a smooth-as-silk Nazi spy in "Operation Cicero" from Fox's "Hour of Stars"(which was a 1-hour remake for television of the 1952 James Mason thriller,"Five Fingers").
Of course, he will deservedly be best remembered as the iconic Mr.Roarke, the gentleman who greeted arriving visitors to "Fantasy Island"(1978-84 series) and helped the fantasizers realize their dreams, often with negative consequences, enabling them to learn what is truly worthwhile in life. He was ideally suited to portray this otherworldly character, and along with his 3-foot-tall assistant,Tattoo (Herve Villechaize), has been granted television immortality.
However, as a sci-fi buff, I would have to nominate his role as the superhuman Khan on "Star Trek" as his very finest hour. Introduced in the 1967 episode, "Space Seed," he was the leader of a contingent of superior humans who had been placed in hibernation, only to be thawed out by the Enterprise crew. Ultimately, they were consigned to a primitive planet by Captain Kirk. But, in an intriguing sequel, they made their presence felt again in the 2nd "Star Trek" film, "Star Trek II:The Wrath of Khan"(1982), with Khan seeking vengeance for his plight. Montalban's characterization spanned a broad range of emotions, and was deserving of the highest commendation!
As an intriguing sidebar, he suffered a spinal injury from falling off a horse back in 1951 while filming “Across the Wide Missouri.” This left him with s permanent limp, but, with his tremendous strength of will, this gutsy actor always managed to conceal it!
While you have passed on, Ricardo, you will not be forgotten, and may the Power of the Cosmos be with You wherever you are now!
Thursday, January 15, 2009
A TRIBUTE TO PATRICK McGOOHAN
PM(No.6): "Where am I?
No.2: "In the village."
No.6: "What do you want?
No.6 "Whose side are you on?"
No.2: “That would be telling. We want information!Information! Information!"
No.6: "You won't get it!
No.2: "By hook or by crook, we will!"
No.6: "Who are you?"
No.2: "The new No.2."
No.6: “Who is No.1?"
No.2: "You are No.6"
No.6: "I am not a number! I am a free man!"
This brief but intense discourse at the opening of each of the 17 episodes of the 1968-69 TV series "The Prisoner" has granted the late actor Patrick McGoohan television immorality! While he impressively won Emmys(1975 and 1990) for 2 of his 4 appearances on "Columbo" as the guest murderer of the week, his dramatic portrayal of an abducted secret agent taken to "The Village" is what he will be primarily remembered for.
Personally, being a non-conformist myself, I have found this series extremely inspiring, watching a man week in and week out assert his individuality and refuse to betray his beliefs. Indeed, the opening of "The Prisoner, " prior to the aforementioned dialogue, was absolutely electrifying, as he drove the wrong way into spy headquarters, stomped his way down a corridor, and pounded on a desk as he handed in his resignation as an espionage agent! I often watch the opening when I feel the need for some inspiration!
Not to be forgotten, of course, are his many fine film roles, such as the heartless veterinarian in the beloved tale of a feline,"The Three Lives of Thomasina"(1964), the sagacious British agent in "Ice Station Zebra"(1968), and his last najor gig as the villainous King Edward I in "Braveheart"(1995).
Blessed with both handsome looks and a fine voice, he was a superb actor who will be sorely missed. As my personal tribute to him, I plan to watch every episode of "The Prisoner" over the next several nights!
And, may the Power of the Cosmos be with You, Patrick, wherever you are now!
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
"Realm of Bizarre News" Top 13 for 2008!
The top 13 are listed here in inverse numerical order, with a 2-way ties for 7th and 2nd! This compilation is admittedly highly subjective and arbitrary, with numerous other excellent runner-up candidates having been left on the sidelines to limit the number to 13.
13. Embarrassing! Some patients who have implanted ceramic artificial hips, which are reportedly more durable than traditional metal and plastic hips, are complaining that those hips are squeaking with each step they take! One study indicates that some 7% are suffering from this annoyance, with a few patients actually taking the drastic step of undergoing another surgical procedure to have them replaced!
12. Truly inspiring! A gal hit a crucial home run to give her college softball team the win in a game deciding the Great Northwest Athletic Conference championship up in Ellensburg,WA. But, her knee imploded as she rounded 1st base, and if she could not make it around the bases, her hit would not count. So, in an outstanding display of sportsmanship, in a scene that might be described as bizarre, 2 gals from the opposing team carried her around the bases so her HR would count!!!!!
11. Stupid criminal trick: 2 senior guys placed their dead pal in a wheelchair and pushed him to the Pay-O-Matic check cashing store in New York City, endeavoring to convince the clerk that he was actually alive so they could cash his $355 social security check. But. a plainclothes officer happened to notice them enter and realized immediately that the pal was a cadaver! The pair were arrested on the spot.
10. On an Air Canada flight from Toronto to London, the co-pilot suddenly went berserk over the Atlantic and had to be restrained and tied up by a contingent of crew members and passengers. When The pilot asked if any of the passengers could assume the role of co-pilot, none responded, but one stewardess volunteered as she surprisingly held a commercial pilot's license, and she helped guide the plane to a smooth, diversionary landing at Shannon Airport in Ireland!
9.Burglar in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia, preparing to abscond with his loot from a home, claims he was repeatedly pushed to the floor by a supernatural entity. He was trapped for 3 days, and when discovered, was so dehydrated, that he had to be rushed to the ER! This ghostly guardian sounds better than a watchdog!
8.Cover your eyes! At Vienna's Burgtheater, in a suicide scene, actor Daniel Hoevals slashed his throat with what he thought was a prop knife...but, it was the real thing and he began bleeding profusely. The audience actually applauded what they imagined were very realistic "special" effects. He came within inches of slicing an artery and dying, but the trooper survived and was back on stage the next evening wearing a bandage around his neck. Police are investigating the possibility of a murder attempt by a jealous rival.
7. Ouch! In Cairo, Egypt, a son, 37, tried to cure his dad's migraine by hitting him in the head some 25 times! The good news: The headache is gone. The bad news: The dad died from the hammering and the son has been arrested for manslaughter(a strong candidate for our "Doofus of the Year" award)! Please, please, use aspirin for a headache...we cannot afford to lose even one of you out there! Thank you!
7. Matthew 5:30 advises: "And, if they right hand offend thee, cut it off and cast it from thee." A man in Hayden,Idaho took this verse seriously: when he saw the mark of the Devil in his right hand (possibly the satanic '666'), he cut it off with a circular saw, had the presence of mind to place a tourniquet around the stump, then microwaved the hand until it was withered so it could not be reattached. Definitely a man of principle (also, another strong candidate for our "Doofus of the Year" award).
6. An unusual anti-wrinkle compound made of nightingale poop is being applied to customers at swank spas in New York City and London for up to $200 a treatment. It has been dried, compacted, sanitized, and deodorized. Reportedly, geishas and Kabuki actors have used such a concoction for centuries with success to battle wrinkles. My question: is it not possible that droppings from other birds, even the lowly pigeon, might work as effectively and be less expensive?
5. Unbelievable! While bicycling, a gal in Lake Luzerne in upstate New York spotted a monarch butterfly with a broken wing. She took it home in an empty water bottle, and nourished it with honey. And, discovering a 9-minute instructional video on the Internet, she was able to mend its wing with teeny cardboard splints affixed with glue! Then, after it healed, she found a trucker willing to drive the butterfly down to Florida to complete its migration south! (Personally, I do not think I would even realize a butterfly had a broken wing, and certainly had no idea that it could be mended!)
4. Great idea! Deceased defense NYC attorney John Jacobs continues to receive cellphone calls in his grave 3 years after his death. He was buried with his fave Motorola T720, and his wife continues to pay the monthly $55 bill to keep it operating. The cell number is actually etched on his tombstone. She and their 2 sons regularly leave messages, keeping him updated on news and family matters!
3. Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Dr.Alvin Bittner had been harvesting liposuctioned fat from his patients to utilize as fuel for his SUV and that of his galpal. For the record, one pound of such fat can be converted to approximately one pound of fuel.
2. He should have paid attention to his mom! Man, 63, in Manchester, England, had a bad habit of picking his nose. Apparently, he did it once too often as he triggered an uncontrollable nosebleed which killed him. I am sure many of you out there were warned by your mothers not to pick your noses...now you know she did so with good reason!
2. Repeated use of cotton swabs in his ears led to the death of man, just 43, in Quebec from meningitis! The excessive rubbing apparently punctured an ear drum which allowed an infection to set in that spread to the spinal cord fluid, with fatal meningitis the surprising result!
1.Sounded like fun! British tourist David Monk, 42, at the Valle di Susa ski resort in northern Italy near Turin slid down a slope on a RUBBER MATTRESS, yes, a RUBBER MATTRESS! But, he could not control it and slammed into a fence, getting himself killed! He is our official "Doofus of the Year," outdistancing some very strong competition! And, please do not try this as we cannot afford to lose even one of you out there! You are our cherished audience members! ==================================================================
I can present these and other intriguing reports(which can be fleshed out in more detail if needed) for you in a dynamic new 1-5 minute feature (or even 30-second microfeaturette) that can run daily, tri-weekly, or weekly on any of your existingproductions, or stand unto itself as a separate 30-minute weekly entity!
I am currently host of the cable TV series,"Mysteries From Beyond The Other Dominion." which was 1 of the 4 original series to premiere on the SCI-FI CHANNEL when it was launched. Recently, I was the resident anomalist on "The New Tom Green Show" on MTV, guested on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" and the new "ALF'S Hit Talk Show," and was profiled on "9 On The Town."
And, I was a regular contributor to "A Current Affair," guested on THE X-TESTERS, hosted a recurring UFO segment on "9 On The Town," and was a "Stranger" on NBC's "Identity."
May the Power of the Cosmos be with You!