You know, I never did get around to eulogizing the great Hunter S. Thompson on my blog as promised...so although it's not Bait Shop news per se, I'll just say this about Raoul Duke: as an Aquarius born in 1967, I always felt a little ripped off that I missed the Revolution (although, in retrospect, I suppose it's just as well...who wants to go to Woodstock and watch Nixon self-destruct only to have Reagan and the Bush boys ride into town and do their level best to reverse all your victories?). At any rate, in the years from high school to college graduation, I made my own psychic journey from the 50s through the Summer of Love to my own personal Altamont and beyond, and Dr. Gonzo was my guide and literary companion, along with fellow travellers Ken Kesey, Tom Wolfe, Gary Trudeau, William S. Burroughs, Harlan Ellison, Herman Hesse and, of course, Neal Cassady and the Kerouac Kid. Like most people, I probably read Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas first...but for those who only know Hunter S. Thompson as Doonesbury's drug-addled Uncle Duke caricature, I highly recommend Hell's Angels, The Great Shark Hunt, Fear and Loathing in America (the second volume of his collected letters) and especially Fear and Loathing: on the Campaign Trail '72 for an example of the great writer behind the wild man image. True, the wild man may have eventually eclipsed the writer, but his style and perspective had a huge influence on a lot of people, including me, and his political analysis is still right on the money from my humble perspective:
Naturally, one would assume all this education and personal growth might leave no time for show biz and celebrity sightings...but about this, one would be wrong. Since last we met here in this little corner of cyberspace, Ol' Bait Shop Productions has crafted a promotional video for Massachusetts film industry booster and State Representative Tom O'Brien, featuring cameos by Congressman Barney Frank, Oscar winner Chris Cooper and his wife Marianne, a.k.a. Mama Moltisanti of Sopranos fame.Sound familiar?"If Nixon wins again, we're in real trouble." He picked up his drink, then saw it was empty and put it down again. "That's the real issue this time," he said. "Beating Nixon. It's hard to even guess how much damage those bastards will do if they get in for another four years."
I nodded. The argument was familiar. I had even made it myself, here and there, but I was beginning to sense something very depressing about it. How many more of these goddamn elections are we going to have to write off as lame but "regrettably necessary" holding actions? And how many more of these stinking, double-downer sideshows will we have to go through before we can get ourselves straight enough to put together some kind of national election that will give me and the at least 20 million people I tend to agree with a chance to vote FOR something, instead of always being faced with that old familiar choice between the lesser of two evils?"
Anyway, so much for that, as HST would say. Meanwhile, in more timely and personal news, I'm currently preparing a retrospective of Burt Wood student horror films (including the 2005 premiere ASSASSIN) for the Herring Run Arts Fest in Middleboro, MA on the afternoon of September 10, 2005 -- followed, later that night, by A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S FEVER, the quasi-original show I'm doing as this year's production for the Pinehills Players. While my schedule always seems to be nonsensically hectic despite my best efforts, this double-booking is something of a stress milestone, and I expect I'll be ready for a nice long vacation on September 11, assuming I survive these back-to-back cultural events...
...but, of course, there will be NO vacation in September, only more stress as I continue the Master's program at U-Mass, teach a bunch of acting, screenwriting and filmmaking courses around the greater Boston area and launch a brand new comedy writing class at the Tufts University Ex College...all while preparing for my upcoming nuptials with the Polish Princess, sure to be an All-Star Sweeps Week Very Special Episode for the ages.
Meanwhile, Jed Weintrob's "ficumentary" feature The F-Word is now a going concern following its well-received premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival...and, unless I've been punk'd, Jed informs me that Joel Silver's Dark Castle Entertainment is planning to option a script the Jed and I wrote last year that managed to catch the eye of Gordon Gekko himself, Mr. Michael "Catherine Zeta-Jones" Douglas. And, in even farther-fetched show biz news, yours truly threw a couple of Hail Mary passes recently, to John Waters and Zalman King, respectively. No word from the Prince of Puke yet (except for the breaking news at the P-Town Film Festival that he'd acquired a copy of Hick Flicks from somewhere but hadn't read it yet), however the Big Z seemed to dig the groovy gals of Prick and said he'd make some calls on their behalf, so who knows?
I'm sure I won't be updating this site again until New Year's Day 2006,
what with all the nuptial and edu-tainment obligations on the Bait Shop
horizon, so keep your eye on the
Ol' Blog Shop for all the latest news and Survivor
geekery in the meanwhile and, as always, stay tuned!