Since my children were very young, they were always on me to tell them 'Sidney stories'. My father was a character who was audacious, clever and charming in equal proportions and was not above making up his own rules as he went along. When I would drive him somewhere and the traffic was bad causing long lines at a traffic light, my father would urge me to 'make a lane' which was his way of saying to pull out and proceed on the wrong side of the road where there would be no back-up and we could make some headway until, that is, cars coming in the opposite direction might want that section of road.
In the 70s, my father underwent lung surgery to remove a tumor. It turned out to be benign but it was a serious procedure and we were all concerned for him. While in the Intensive Care ward, Sidney managed to behave himself--hooked up to oxygen, IVs and with several nurses stationed in the same room, he hadn't much choice. When he was transferred after a few days into a regular room, however, my father began making side deals with his private nurse of the most outrageous sort buying, bargaining and cajoling goods and services that are not on any hospital's list of offerings and just how he got away with it, I'll never know. Honor is due.
When his condition had improved sufficiently, my father was transferred to a nursing home for another week or so of recovery. Here there were no private nurses to run his errands and accommodate his wishes and the nurses who were on duty weren't likely to be receptive to Sidney's shenanigans, but did that stop him? No.
Sidney would wait until the evening to clean up and shave. By morning, he had a five o'clock shadow. By early afternoon, he looked like someone living in an alley. By the time the evening shift of nurses came on duty, he looked a right ruffian and someone you would want to spend a minimum amount of time around. After the nurses had completed their evening rounds, Sidney would clean himself up and, looking quite dapper, present himself at the nurse's station and claim to be his own brother there to check Sidney out of the convalescent hospital for the evening. He would flirt with the nurses and they all thought it was very nice that Sidney's brother was seeing to it that he would have a nice recuperative dinner in a restaurant. Of course, that isn't what happened and women and jazz clubs featured largely in what was to follow on those evenings. Oh, yes, this became a routine during his stay in the hospital and no one ever caught on.
One evening, my father found himself at the check-out counter in a grocery store. As the clerk is ringing up his charges, Sidney hears something of an argument taking place at the check-out counter behind him. Somebody is complaining vociferously that the clerk won't cash his check and Sidney pays it no heed. As the dispute continues and becomes louder, he hears the man say, "I'm the best organ player in the world and you won't cash my check!" Without turning around to look, Sidney calls out, "If you're the best organ player in the world, your name had better be Jimmy Smith!" After the briefest of pauses, the other man said, "I am Jimmy Smith." And thus, Sidney and Jimmy became friends.
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...