Sunday, July 24, 2005

Just When You Thought it was Safe to go back into the Pool

I had a flurry of regret during my trip to LA that I did not have the option of living there.. I saw several friends I love and admire, some of them twice, three actresses I Ditto--love and admire--, whose bright sensibilities match their talents, Jamie, Gena Rowlands and Tyne Daly, had a chance to discuss smart politics with my friends the Boyarskys(he was City Editor for the LA Times), and dabbled in a dazzle of Bull... the word the New York Times won't print, even when it's the title of a bestseller. There was a party in the very building where I was staying, to which I was invited, in honor of Ivana Trump, who is the International Incarnation of that unprintable word. Ivana is opening a resort in Australia, the land that will brook no bs, so it is my prediction that the place will, with all speed, imitate the action of the sinkhole that appeared in Laurel Canyon during my stay.
I introduced myself to Ivana, prefacting my hello with "I've been waiting to say this to someone all my life: I met you in St. Moritz." She responded with the blankest stare I have ever received, and walked through me to get to someone who mattered, like the cameraman from 'Entertainment Tonight!' who was shooting the party. Also in the cast were Ryan O'Neal, who's lost the weight and gotten back his looks, two former Miss Universes, one Miss Thailand, and one Miss Greece, the latter married to Freddie Fields, former partner of the suicided David Begelman, David's widow, Anabel, former wife of his best friend Jay Weston(that was David's M.O.), on whom he had cheated the afternoon of the day he shot himself at the Century Plaza, I think it was. Sitting on the couch with his once wife Alana, who'd married(and divorced) Rod Stewart in the interim, was George Hamilton, looking exactly as he had forty years ago, except with a deeper tan. I asked him what his beauty secrets were, and he said he thought about happy things and didn't pay much attention to food, although a woman with whom I left in the elevator said he forgot to mention many secret trips to Switzerland.
Got the world's best haircut from Dusty Fleming, and color by Nada whose daughter married Christopher Bale, star of 'Batman' before he was-- such things happen in the land of dreams-- and also saw at the party Victoria White, widow of Sir or maybe it was Lord Gordon, recently ex-wife of an arms manufacturer from Texas ot maybe it's Idaho, who is now on the arm of Bob Evans, due to elope with him to Mexico on the 1st of August. She is very beautiful and empty, so is as good as a movie star, and he seems very happy. He has recovered from two strokes and what he described to me as having 'flatlined,' and has written a book called 'The Fat Lady Sang,' which I suggested he call, more recognizably, 'The Fat Lady Sings,' and he said he would put it up for discussion to several focus groups. Ah, L.A, L.A. I also counseled him against opening at a New York theatre reading aloud from the book, and advised he leave it at publishing and Books on Tape, reminding him what the critics had just done to Suzanne Somers, which evisceration was a subject of much Schaadenfreudial merriment at the fest.
In tha apartment of friends, all glass-encased, so on a clear day, etc. I looked at the hills, and wished I had the 2.8 million they were asking(2 bedrooms, only 2, Zut, Alors!) But when I had Gena and her beau to dinner the sun set on the dining area part of the living room, and in spite of very efficient air-conditioning the place turned into a cooker, and we had to wait until the sun went down to eat and it IS daylight savings time. That, and a nasty woman in the pool were enough to make me glad I didn't live there, and I returned to New York with a rested heart, waking up today to the joy of The New York Times.
I have to say that in spite of how much I love the Boyarskys, and understand that Bill is no longer at the Times in LA, I was reminded every morning of the Fred Allen story where he came to California and asked for a newspaper, "but the man must have misunderstood me, and gave me the Los Angeles Times." As you know from the Arnold headlines, they have their priorities, and even on the days there was real news(London, Egypt) the world coming apart didn't seem so, because of the lay-out of the front page, where chicks and ducks and geese better scurry but nothing appears that dire.
The wonder of the Times here, though, making it worth living small and without a pool, is that at your doorstep of a morning is not only all the news that's fit to print-- more than we need really, as they cut down 80,000 trees every Sunday to put out that paper, a secret a staffer(not Mark Felt) told me and said I wasn't to tell anyone, but you know me-- but the growing conviction that the truth will out, and some(not all) will maybe get strangled by their own deception. I was moved to write an Op-Ed letter that in all likelihood might not be printed. So here, just in case, for you:

To the Editor, New York Times

In your very evenhanded piece today on the White House's 'Political Warfare' on Joseph Wilson, you have a typo referring to the presidential plane leaving for Senegal as "Air Force Once." As I began mulling it over, it seemed to me perhaps not so much a typo as a fair appraisal. What dignity and integrity this country had once. What leaders there were once. Even Harrison Ford in the Tom Clancy thriller that took place within that great plane's confines had a nobility and heroism more commensurate with the office than what we have there now. The unraveling pattern of deceit that this administration is based on has made us despised all over the world, and now it begins to show clearly its shameless face at home.

end of the mailed-in outrage.

Oh, may it do some good. Oh, may terrorists be caught and blotted out, and the home-grown ones who work without bombs(at least so far) considering themselves above the law, as they rally to change it to their inflexible ideological benefit, be exposed, May Judith Miller get out of jail and Karl Rove go in. And may everyone live happily ever after. For a while, anyway.

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