Monday, August 15, 2005

August 15, 2005
It’s my mother’s birthday. She’s 84. Last night Lou took her out to Wapati Lodge west of Cody, her favorite place.

Robert Blake was supposed to be our table-mate at the Golden Boot Awards on Saturday night. I felt kind of nervous about him sitting next to me and thought of a couple of conversation starters, like:

• “Hey, what’s the deal with our legal system?”

• “Man, you are dressed to kill tonight.”

But Robert sat at a better table. We were on the outer ring of Saturn, in terms of clout. The popular kids (I swear show biz is so high school) sat down in the inner circle and had table numbers like six and twelve. We were at table 314.

When Wilford Brimely got his award he asked if “Robbie Blake” was in the house, and when Blake acknowledged that he was, Wilford demanded that he come up on the stage. Blake pranced, and I mean pranced, up on the stage and they hugged and Robert whispered something in Brimley’s ear and then Blake stood there while Wilford rambled on about how the things he’s done are better than what they’ve got on now, like people “eating bugs and stuff.” This got a big laugh and applause. Blake stood there like a fish out of water. I felt for him.

Tom Selleck taped his introduction for honoree Mark Harmon. Selleck is on location in Nova Scotia or Greenland, I didn’t get which, but in his accolades for Mark, Tom mentioned more than once that they didn’t have any money to pay Mark when they did Crossfire Trail and yet, Mark came aboard and gave the film so much dimension that they couldn’t have achieved with any other actor. When Mark came up on stage he quipped, "The reason they didn’t have any money was because they paid Tom." Too true for high school.

Of course our very own Phil Spangenberger got a Golden Boot and we clapped and hooted like crazy (he was the real reason we came), and he thanked True West from the podium, which was very nice. Phil is a class guy.

Besides Brimley, Powers Booth and James Caan were quite cocky in their remarks. Booth had a stunning, statuesque brunette on his arm when he sashayed in. She might have been 20, but I doubt it. Joel Haley Osmond is a little bitty guy (as is Michael Blake).

Actor Andrew Prine was introduced to me (we both appear on the Westerns channel) and he looked kind of pained, didn’t have a clue who I was yet managed to be civil. Just then a photographer angled up to us and Andrew put his hand on my shoulder and smiled like we went to high school together. Ah, student council, I remember it so well.

The only presenter who kind of lost it was Ann Rutherford who appeared in 17 Andy Hardy films. She was introducing tv mogul Jim Rogers and kind of went into monologue meltdown and kept repeating herself. It felt like a 45 minute introduction. I felt sorry for her.

Ann wasn't alone. The show went way long (it wrapped at 1:30 in the morning!) and as we filed out of the Beverly Hilton theatre, a gaggle (actually somewhere between a gaggle and a horde) of fans lined the walk all the way out to the registration area and as Dave and I walked by they all had their digital cameras primed and gave us these looks like, “Where are the stars? These are just losers. Where’s Robert Blake? And Wilform Brimley?” Or something like that.

”Reflection is the beginning of reform.”
—Mark Twain

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