Back when I was starting to develop my interest in auto racing, I dragged my family to the Times Grand Prix at Riverside. This was about the time I started driving but before I acquired the Jaguar E-Type and so we drove out in the family Cadillac. The first thrill for me was entering the parking lot which could also be described as acres and acres of dirt that became dust as you drove into it leaving your car covered in a thick coat within minutes. Nevertheless, I recognized more exotic cars than I ever thought existed. I saw my first Aston-Martin DB5 in the flesh. Ferrari GTEs and Maserati 3500GTs were there along with Alfas, Lancias, Rolls and Bentleys, too. All coated with dirt.
The race was exciting and the cars very loud. I remember the Cheetahs, which I'd never heard of. A.J. Foyt was driving the Hussein for John Mecom. Roger Penske and Hap Sharp were driving Chaparrals, Bruce McLaren a McLaren Elva Mk I, Richie Ginther and Parnelli Jones Cooper King Cobras and the field included Jack Brabham, Innes Ireland, Jim Clark, Augie Pabst, Ken Miles and Bob Bondurant to name of few. Not a bad line-up!
Riverside was pure racing and didn't pretend to offer glamor like Monaco or Spa-Francorchamps but glamor was present if one cared to look for it. That was the day I first saw what I would later learn was a Ferrari Berlinetta Lusso. I caught site of it in the paddock and I also caught sight of its owner, Jill St. John looking awfully good. Much later, I was to see Jill towing a cabin cruiser on the 405 with that Lusso...
When the race was over, it was every man for himself. The parking lot--essentially a dirt field--had no lane markers and one headed towards the exits like so many cows leaving the pasture. It was chaos, in other words. My father was nothing if not prepared and he fetched a white painter's cap (where ever did he get hold of that?) and a flashlight from the trunk of the Cadillac and said, "Follow me!" Where, I wondered, as the car was blocked by hundreds of other cars wanting out.
My father donned the white cap and used the flashlight to direct the traffic ahead of me. The other drivers must surely have thought he was a parking lot employee for they followed his directions thinking, I can only assume, that he was directing them towards the nearest exit. He was not. What he was doing was clearing a path through which I could drive that big, gold Cadillac out of the parking lot turning the other cars back to where they'd come in the process. We were out of there in no time and it was a stunt that would have belonged in the movie It's a Mad, Mad World. It was just a day in the life with my father, as those who knew him can attest.
That was a seminal day for me and I found that everything I'd read in magazines such as Road & Track about the excitement of racing was true. I was still some years away from owning my own Berlinetta Lusso but the desire was formed and it would be longer still before I attended the Jim Russel racing school, but everything was set in motion that day--not to mention we beat everyone out of the parking lot.
How to Shoot a Feature Film in 15 Days (And Survive to See Profits)
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Examples of Responsive Reactions
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Action/ReAction at Stella Adler
Point of Departure
A Series of ONE...
Stephen and Dragonuk
Stephen Mitchell webinar for Stage 32
Ferrari GTO 3987 at speed by Yan denes
Ray D. Shosay's Journal
Dispatches from a (junior) suite in Paris
Ray D. Shosay's Journal (excerpt)
"Saturday, January 27, 2007
They say you can fool some of the people all of the time. Accordingly, I think we should concentrate on this group initially. We can move on to the people you can only fool some of the time at a later date if we deem it necessary. I hope to hear back from my agent about this as soon as he's out of rehab, as I don't think my messages have been getting through."
Ignorance is Bliss by Stephen Mitchell
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Exerpt from Ignorance is Bliss
"Out of the corner of his eye, Martin saw Martha shift in her seat. She leaned forward, as though something was about to be decided. This caused her breasts to push up against the neckline of her dress in a way that couldn't be fully appreciated out of the corner of one’s eye. So, Martin turned his head to look directly into the abyss of her cleavage. He was vaguely aware that Murray was talking again."
Carrera Panamericana (1950-54)
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Ferrari GTO 3987
Elysée Wednesday: Drive!
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“You ought to meet Steve. The two of you have the same kind of Ferrari.”
Ferrari Berlinetta Lusso
One evening, I was enjoying a John le Carré novel and a glass of Bordeaux...
L'art de l'automobile
My first Lusso prior to restoration
It was only after Sinatra was gone...
Once upon a time...
Meeting Enzo Ferrari
I came across this on a late night stroll in Paris near the Louvre.
I bought Bentleys in England and Ferraris & Maseratis in Italy to re-sell in Los Angeles as a teenager. I met Enzo Ferrari, Juan Fangio and Steve McQueen. I 'grew up' on the set of Mission: Impossible and other episodic TV series of the era. For a few years, I owned a Ferrari GTO that is owned by Ralph Lauren today and valued at approximately $52M. I began my film career by writing, producing and directing Montmartre in Paris in French. I founded and ran a repertory company for film & TV for 20 years in Los Angeles. I created a TV series which had fans that included Marlon Brando. I authored the first new acting technique--Action/ReAction--that was not based on Stanislavski's Method. I am currently writing my third novel and shooting my spy thriller Exigence. If you can't make movies, live your life as though you were in one...