Busking 5

I’ve been busking around Washington Square. Since I can’t sing or dance or play an instrument, I’ve been offering the following, to make a little scratch:

1. A light trim ($1)

2.  Manicure with sparkly polish ($2)

3. Pedicure with fungicidal sparkly polish ($3)

4. Look to the left and cough ($4)

5. Full pelvic (Free) (Spectators: $5)

Life in Hollywood: prosecuted compelling equivocal removal favorable

There is a producer, Isaac, with whom I have worked at Universal for years. Isaac has prosecuted a successful career in the industry, with many compelling films to his credit, and few that were equivocal. He’s never faced abrupt and ignominious removal from his office and from the lot, like so many of his peers. His  future prospects are favorable, if not sparkling.

Isaac called me into his office the other day and asked me to do a treatment of an idea he had. Or he had had. Or that he had had. He paced behind his desk.

“The nation is filling up with geezers,” he said. “Even I am becoming a geezer. Let’s cash in on the demo.”

“Sure,” I said.

“E. T.,” Isaac said. “His race, out there in space, they age faster than us. He comes back to Earth, he’s old. He’s a wizened little f**ker. He comes back to find Drew. You remember that other movie Drew was in, where some guy has a Barrymore fan club and he just wants to have lunch with her, and when she finds out, she has lunch with him? Well, with E.T. in this movie, I’m thinking, she doesn’t find out that he’s back and she doesn’t have lunch with him. See, E.T. always had a yen for Drew. Anyway, Universal lets him stay on the lot but he can’t get a meeting, not with Drew, not with Spielberg, not with nobody, nothing, nada, zilch. He’s old news. Nobody cares from this guy. Eventually, he gives up with a broken heart, or whatever he has in there, and walks out the gate. Or gets kicked out. He ends up on the street with Will Smith in that homeless violin movie. Or was that Jamie Foxx? So then E.T. has some street  adventures, you dream up something for him, and meanwhile Drew hears what’s happened and she goes out looking for him. She’s depressed. Maybe she’s not over that breast-reduction she had. She didn’t realize how much she was going to miss them.”

“Geez, Isaac, I don’t know about this.”

“Shut up. Put in a little sex. Howard the Duck got it on in his movie, didn’t he? Did Spielberg show the little guy’s thing at all? E.T. comes back, he’s old, but he’s still human, you know what I mean?”

“Couldn’t he be regular age, maybe six feet, like in Avatar?”

“What, are you crazy? Nobody wants to see Drew shtup a six-foot lizard. What are you thinking? But now, if he’s old and creaky, it’s a Mother Teresa thing. And even old, he could be hung. The geezer demo can still operate. Don’t make this Coccoon. It’s more like The Wrestler meets Thelma Schoonmaker.”

He opened his desk drawer and pulled out a personal checkbook. Scribbled me a check.

“Keep it to yourself,” he said. “These sharks around here, they’ll steal your balls out of your boxers, you let them.”

Life in Hollywood: upset, “ho stroll,” common, money, house keys

It has never upset me to learn that a woman I am seeing is a whore. Over the years, some of my best friends have been whores.  That doesn’t mean that I want to see my current squeeze out on Sepulveda or down on a ho stroll in South L.A. Hey, I’m a script doctor. I’ve got a lot in common with my friends the whores. They need money, I need money, but we’re all a little short right now. Probably more than one woman with my house keys still in her purse is selling it as we speak.

Having said that, there was Tivona. Tivona did a little work in costumes but a lot more with the crew. She didn’t service the stars; she handled all those names you see in the crawl at the end of the movie. Tivona and I liked to share a drink or two, or a toke or a line or a pipe once in a while when we were both free. I liked Tivona and Tivona liked me. We spent some quality body time together too and it didn’t hurt that she was flexible in mind, body, and morals. She also darned a couple of socks for me.

What happened with Tivona was, she was so well liked around the studio that eventually some producer offered her a bit in a summer blockbuster. All she had to do, naturally, was sleep with a couple of executives and the star. So I congratulated her and invited her out to dinner to talk about it.

“I don’t think I should go,” she says.


“Well, you know. I’m sort of going with the top line now. I’ve got my ticket. I’m not sure that I should be, you know, consorting with the crew anymore.”

“Tivona. You’re screwing a couple of rich sleazeballs to get a part in a movie. It’s no different than what you’ve been doing around here for months.”

“Please don’t talk like that, Honey. I’m an actress now.”

“You’ve been acting for years, if you know what I mean.”

“Don’t be coarse. I’ll get you tickets to the premier.”

“I don’t want the premier. I want your rear.”

But I didn’t get it. Tivona (not her real name, by the way) is a real star now, with the public romances and the adopted babies and the home in Malibu and the fancy wheels. All I get from her on the set is a wink.