Friday, May 18, 2012

Grandma Guessie

May 18, 2012
Gave a history talk to the Rotary Club at the Anthem Country Club this morning. great group. Very funny crowd, lots of laughs all around.

Last week, Ken Amorosano and I motored up to Prescott Valley to see the new bronze "Not-So-Gentle Tamer" at Bronzesmith. And speaking of the sculpture and the inspiration for it, here is my grandmother Louise Guess with her husband Robert Guess and their first born, Sadie Pearl. Photo taken in 1915 between Steins Pass and Lordsburg, New Mexico. My cousin, Tap Lou Weir, sent me this.

Although I didn't have access to this photo at the time, you can see there is a solid resemblance to my "Not-So-Gentle Tamer".

From Prescott Valley, Ken and I then motored on to Prescott to meet John Langellier at the newly refurbished Elk Opera Theater. We got the royal tour. That's Ken in the cowboy hat and John, seated.

This past week I met the stage director Kate Hawkes, who is doing a play at the fabulous refurbished Elks Opera Theater. I asked her what she is working on and here is her reply:

I am working on Fred and Mary: An Unconventional Romanceby Prescott playwright Micki Shelton (check it out at The world premier of any play is a big deal and this one about Lady Architect Mary Jane Colter and railroad entrepreneur Fred Harvey dealing largely with many of the wonderful buildings at the Grand Canyon, opening IN the year of the AZ centennial celebration is spiced with extra challenge! Telling an historical the story through an imaginative lens of ‘what if’ we take people to the Grand Canyon IN the the Elks Opera House. My biggest challenge right now is aligning all the pieces – costumes, set, images for projection! Oh and finding a place to rehearse for 3 weeks! (our own space the size of the stage of the Opera House) We have a dynamite cast and a great team of designers. Now we have to find the lumber to build the set (any donations out there gladly received!) and then I can get down to what I love the most. Working with the actors!

Meanwhile, my good friend Kevin Mulkins has shared with me some of his original Wyatt Earp photos. Check this one out:

I've never seen this one before. If you want to see more of Kevin's amazing collection you can see it right  here.

Meanwhile, got this from Wild Bill Hickok expert extraordinaire Joe Rosa last week:

I wish someone would write a factual article about Tom Mix, on the lines that I did on Buck Jones back in 1966.   His early life has been made legendary in much the same way as Earp's so it came as a shock to learn that he deserted from the army in the early 1900's.   I still recall the morning of October 15 or 16, 1940 when as a very small boy I came in to the room as the B. B. C. newscaster was reviewing the headlines, and he said something like: "Hollywood regrets to announce the death of the cowboy star Mr. Tom Mix in a car accident."   I remember my nother letting out a large "Agh" which made me ask who Mix was!    Then in 1942 my own hero Buck Jones had similar treatment following his death in the Boston Coconut Grove fire.   Amazing how things like that stick in the mind when more important or life-enhancing or changing things do not . . .

  —Joe Rosa

Sometimes headlines tickle and inspire me:
Mom, 37, Plays College Softball

This was an actual headline in the paper. Here's a headline that I could write:
Man, 65, Thinks He Could Have Played College Hardball

This afternoon I am storyboarding two segments of our proposed TV show that begins filming next Monday. Talking to Dr. Buck Montgomery about actors for the bits. Going to be fun. Love this stuff.

"The high sentiments always win in the end, the leaders who offer blood, toil and tears and sweat always get more out of their followers than those who suffer safety and a good time. When it comes to the pinch, human beings are heroic."
—George Orwell