Thursday, January 14, 2010

The Decorations Come Down

So Mimi and I are in Beverly Hills, in fine regalia for the holidays, Manufacturer’s Trust bank building with a big ribbon up the side of it and across, so it looked like a present which it might not have been to anybody but Ben Bernake. But as they were cutting away the pine from various storefronts on Santa Monica Boulevard this morning , I snagged a big red ribbon for Mimi who does not care to wear it, thinking it makes her look like a whore. Whores do not proliferate in Beverly Hills as there are too many women looking to give it away, but I did see a number of tiny, tight-assed women in very butt-conforming pants who are wearing spike heels with gold or red on the undersoles, so they are either making a lot of money being manicurists, or emulating Oprah.
It is a great privilege to be here when so much of the country is freezing, so I set aside the last of any contempt I had for LA and just say thank you for the weather. There are also a number of people I love here, so it is good to be back, and some favorite friends are being kind, bringing me DVDs of movies to watch during my confinement (I am With Book) and recuperating from minor eye surgery to correct what Tom Korman called my Quasimodo, an overused muscle from staring too long for too many years at the computer or what was once known as a typewriter. I understand Cormac McCarthy’fias typewriter sold for a fortune at auction, but I do not have it in me to try for greatness that is depressing, and it would be pointless anyway, as my last typewriter I gave to a charity in San Francisco when I wrote a novel there. When I tried to get it back after my career took what the Fed would call a downturn, thinking perhaps the talent had been in that machine, I was informed that by then probably people were living in it.
So I am here at the Hotel Mosaic, a little undiscovered jewel, repairing and courting the Muses. I think if they have any sense, they will be glad to come to California, setting aside the financial crisis and the bad rap. We shall see.
Meanwhile, my last work, Live the Day, a picaresque tale of a woman of a certain age (who could that be?) in Venice, is in the capable hands of a young man who believes in it. My Greek play, as friends of this blog know, is to be a part of the celebration of my Alma Mater, Bryn Mawr’s 125th anniversary, in a renovated Goodhart Hall, where Katharine Hepburn spoke her first words onstage. She came back to talk to those of us who were interested in the theater while I was an undergraduate, and with hand holding a shaking teacup, and a very Main Line accent, said “I suppose I’m expected to tell you how Bryn Mawr helped me in the the-ah-tah, but I cahn’t.”
Well, if the occasion ever warrants it, I can. It seems only yesterday since Junior Show. How did that happen?
Love to you all, amd a belated Happy Healthy New Year.