Strange Encounters With Hollywood LegendsWritten by Stephen Schochet
Meeting famous people is often a surreal experience for both parties. In 1956 when Elvis Presley arrived in Hollywood he and his entourage stayed at Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel. One day he got into elevator. "What floor?" asked operator. "Tenth please." The operator looked at him with disdain. "You can't go up to tenth floor. Elvis is staying there. No one is allowed there." A bemused Presley said," I know. I'm Elvis." The hotel employee stared at him for a long moment then said," Well I don't care who you are, you can't go to tenth floor." The amiable singer agreed to go to eleventh floor and walked down stairs to tenth.
Some entertainment organizations are so vast that employees don't always recognize people at top. Walt Disney who often was harsh with those who worked for him, had no patience for anyone at Disneyland who was rude to customers or as he put it, guests. One time when an unfriendly security guard prevented he and his wife Lillian from getting on a ride, Walt fired him reasoning man would be unpleasant with others. But if someone was doing their job they had nothing to fear from boss. Once, when Walt was on hand for a demonstration of a new ride a young girl working there chided him for lighting up a cigarette, it wasn't allowed. Disney, who eventually died of lung cancer, asked, "Whose idea was that?" "Walt Disney's." Walt stubbed out cigarette. "That's good enough for me."
Sometimes famous have a difficult time not being center of attention. Once at a party at Louis B. Mayer's house, mogul was expressing his admiration for a female," The red hair, legs, I have never seen such beauty. She walks so regally like a queen". Greer Garson new queen of MGM lot was standing nearby. She walked up to Mayer's circle and said," Why thank you Mr. Mayer." It turned out LB was talking about his new horse.
It's hard sometimes for stars to remember that not everyone cares about who they are or what they are doing. One time Laurel and Hardy were filming a strange scene in Venice Beach that required boys to run down a narrow alleyway with their wives chasing them. The women would shoot at them causing innocent men to run out of their nearby apartment buildings in their undergarments and run away, with Stan and Ollie doing double takes. Before shooting scene Laurel gathered extras around," Listen fellas, it's costing us a fortune to rent out these apartments so I want to get it right first time. Now when you hear shots and run out into alley, don't linger. We only want you in scene for about ten seconds." After director shouted "ACTION!" boys ran down alley, their wives fired their guns, men in their undergarments ran out and disappeared quickly following Stan's instructions to letter. All except one guy who was about thirty seconds late, ran wrong way, and bumped into Laurel, ruining his close-up."You bloody fool. You ruined shot!" shouted Laurel. "I'm not in movie," replied runner."
Visiting GrandmaWritten by Joyce C. Lock
If creek was up, we had to park car next to gravel country road, then take our shoes off and walk long stretch to barn (wading through water, as water covered road up past barn). The water was knee high ... if you were oldest kid. So, two youngest got carried.
While that might have sounded like fun, one was barefoot, trying to keep clothes clean, holding one's shoes up in air, stepping lightly, not knowing what one would be stepping on next. Hopefully, no one would slip and fall into water. And, on top of that, women still wore dresses in those days. So, mom carried lighter little one while trying to keep her dress out of water. It was hard work for all.
We also had to make sure to stay in a straight path, so as not to get sucked into creek. Of course, we wouldn't dare cross little wooden bridge, on path before barn, until Dad assured us as to where bridge was located. A miss step could mean creek, of course.
Only, hill to house was much steeper; gooey red clay when soaked, with crevices throughout mud road.