The Random 16

A couple of weeks ago, I was tagged for another meme-thing on Facebook … Linda Richards, top-notch idea woman that she is, inspired me to reuse it here. I like the idea of reuse, make do or mend … why limit a perfectly good meme to the Facebook environment?

Like everyone else apparently, I’m excited about the Inauguration. I’ll be recording it for viewing after work. And I’m hoping that the number of newspaper special editions it sells will help keep our remaining dailies in business …

Speaking of which, Noir City is this Friday, January 23rd … Noir City, a font of inspiration and sweaty, heady obsession … Noir City, the premiere film festival in the world, the dreamchild of the desperate, the deranged and the dangerous. Noir City. The name says it all, baby. And of course I’ll be there, holding my Noir City passport. No shots this year–I’ve been inoculated before.

This year’s theme ties in with the sad decline of journalism and the inky magic of tangible print–yes, it’s Newspaper Noir, and the lead film is the Humphrey Bogart vehicle Deadline, USA. Noir Czar Eddie Muller‘s father was a byline sports columnist for the San Francisco Examiner, and believe you me, these films will all pack a nostalgic wallop of the long-gone world of real journalism … you know, before news became merely opinion.

Somehow, Eddie always pulls rabbits and magic out of his many hats … this year’s festival will be really special (and Arlene Dahl is the guest!), so forget economic news or post-holiday blues–find a million dollar baby at San Francisco’s Castro Theater, because Noir Days Are Here Again.

One more thing before the meme: I was saddened to learn that Ricardo Montalban passed away. A charming, ever-urbane man of wonderful talent, charisma and personal appeal, he enriched a bleak television landscape with fun and fantasy, and graced a number of good films with his presence. One of them was a hard-hitting noir, helmed by Anthony Mann and lensed by John Alton: Border Incident. Coincidentally, it’s airing on TCM on the opening date of Noir City (Friday, January 23rd), so if you can’t come to San Francisco, you can pay tribute to both noir and Montalban by watching this fine film. I’ll post a review of it soon … in the meantime, see the trailer here.

Now … the sixteen bits of personal trivia. I was originally tagged by legal eagle and thriller writer Ken Isaacson, and the MWA Maven herself, Margery Flax.

1. Ken now owes me at least two drinks at the next conference for getting “The Pina Colada Song” stuck in my head.

2. Confession: I’m a sap for any song that features classic Hollywood … “Bette Davis Eyes” … “Vogue” … and, yes, even “Key Largo” (We had it all … just like Bogie and Bacall!)

3. I was the only girl in my kindergarten play. I played the little billy goat in The Three Billy Goats Gruff–and not knowing that billy meant male, I wore a pastel dress and a hair ribbon.

4. When I was six I wanted to be a paleontologist.

5. My mother tells me I used to love the Beatles when I was a baby.

6. My first pony’s name was Sugarfoot. My second pony’s name–when we moved to Florida–was Rascal. My first horse’s name was Mahalia. And my mom knew Mahalia Jackson.

7. I am very proud of whistling well.

8. I collect comic books and paper ephemera from the ’30s and ’40s for research and pleasure.

9. My Mae West impression won the role of the courtesan in The Comedy of Errors for me.

10. I’m an incurable Romantic. That’s why I write noir.

11. I almost attended UC San Diego and was accepted there as a Chemistry major … I thought about becoming a cosmochemist.

12. I attended the University of Dallas on a scholarship as a Drama major instead.

13. I’m the first person in my family to graduate from college.

14. I’m a coal miner’s granddaughter.

15. My background is half Polish and half English, Irish, and Scottish with some Choctaw thrown in.

16. I refuse to eat viscera, but I love escargot.

Got a trivium or two? Share some of your own!