Cliff Robertson, 1923-2011

Oscar-winning actor Cliff Robertson dies at 88 [LAT]

His hair always scared me. He won an Oscar? For what? Wasn’t he on Dallas or Falconcrest or some shit like that?

Charly aka Flowers For Algernon… a story about a downs syndrome man who was given a treatment to make him genius level smarts.

@ManchuCandidate: And back again.

I really enjoyed the book at some appropriately early age — written first-person, so it’s the narrative that grows and shrinks.

His star turn in the final scene of Three Days of the Condor is a tour de force. He asks the most important question – will the MSM publish the truth?

Eighty-eight seems like what Brits might call “a good innings.” Of course I say that as a mere stripling of nearly 69 (as of October 25, 2011). Speaking of mortality, as we are, last weekend I went to my hometown, Wabash, Indiana, to meet my two remaining siblings, two half-sisters, for one of them’s high school reunion. My husband, known to you all as Effete Hipster, God knows why, I have no contr0l over him, never did, “independent as a hog on ice,” as my people say, was as he always is, a benign and subversive presence. “Benign” is just what it means–he has always been one of the tenderest, gentlest persons I have ever met. “Subvervise” only means that he’s irreverent and witty and shares with my elder half-sister, who now lives in Californiya, an appetite for weed. She’s good about sharing and is also witty and loving herself, so you can imgine how welcome her visit was to EF.

I digress, what I really wanted to share was a witty gravestone. My mother, stepfather, and maternal grandmother’s ashes share a common pink/red? granite gravestone, next to my half-brother’s gravestone, which is a wonderful God-knows-what gnarly rock, which his wife chose. After cleaning lichens off the pinkish stone, the five of us (our son, my two sisters, and my husband and I) went looking for the graves of my stepfather’s mother and father. We found them, but in the course of looking, I found a stone reading, “I’ve made my debut.” Florence Huffman, 1907-1995.

I absolutely LOVE that. I think she may have been someone of my stepgrandmother’s generation, someone out of our small town with theatrical ambitions, as a singer or an actress, and her name resonated with me at once. I think I met her in my childhood. I have a dim memory of a larger-than-life vivacity, impressive to the timid kid I was.

Thanks for listening. I love graveyards. My sister’s reunion met up with a classmate’s 92-yr-old doctor father, and just tonight I got his phone number, hoping to pick his brain about Florence. (Should add that, until he blotted his copybook with my grandmother by leaving his first wife, she had always intended to ask said doctor or his heirs to scatter her ashes over the Wabash River from his private airplane. Doubt if he’s flying anymore, and she’s been gone since 1971.


The Military Channel has been running his “PT 109” the past few days. I always thought he made a good JFK. I even got to see some of the original set from that film back in the late ’70’s somewhere in LA at a touristy museum of some sort; the name of which escapes me now.

RIP, Mr. Robertson.

@lynnlightfoot: I don’t know which part of your account of your day I enjoy most, but I think “independent as a hog on ice” is rivaling “I’ve made my debut” for the blue ribbon.

Kisses to you and Effete Hipster/Mr. LL.

Meanwhile, let’s all read about the next guy Gov GoodHair is going to fry.

The issue at hand isn’t Buck’s innocence, but the means by which his death sentence was obtained. Prosecutors firmly established Buck’s guilt, but to secure a capital punishment conviction in Texas they needed to prove “future dangerousness”—that is, provide compelling evidence that Buck posed a serious threat to society if he were ever to walk free. They did so in part with the testimony of a psychologist, Dr. Walter Quijano, who testified that Buck’s race (he’s African American) made him more likely to commit crimes in the future.

And it’s pretty wackadoodle when the teabagging Senator John Cornyn is calling for a new sentencing hearing and that Buck should not be executed.

/la la la la la la la la [head bang, head bang, head bang] la la la [pours another glass of wine]

Oh, and meanwhile, the State of Georgia is about to execute an innocent man. Rptrcub, please slap some sense into your governor.

@SanFranLefty: Thanks, darling. I treasure your contributions to this site and to the commonwealth created by Nojo and all of those discerning persons who came here from the great Wonkette Schism that occurred when Megan was fired. I still mourn Ewalda: “Paris on the Seekonk,” indeed! And I fret about Prommie, who seems to be in retreat from us all, when clearly he needs us. I’m too old (and now too involved in nursing a Parkinson’s patient) to learn how to benefit from Facebook (aka, I believe, by younger persons, as the sandbox or the back of the class). Baked is okay, right, since all the tempests?

@lynnlightfoot: Schism!

Fun Fact: On September 11, 2011, American thrash metal band Slayer released its album “God Hates Us All.” Tool beat them for the Grammy that year for Best Metal Performance.

Slayer: “God Send Death” from “God Hates Us All.”


My current tombstone fantasy involves stealing a line from Frank Zappa:

Help, I’m a Rock.

@lynnlightfoot: Mel Blanc was the voice of Bugs Bunny, Elmer Fudd, Daffy Duck, and many others. You can read his epitaph here.

@lynnlightfoot: I love graveyards, which freaks out a number of people. When I was a little girl, my grandfather’s family reunion was held at a pre-Revolutionary War church near our place where many of the ancestors were buried. My cousin and I adored rambling through the graveyard and reading old epitaphs. Cleaning and decorating the family graves with fresh flowers was part of the festivities. On a visit to my husband’s people in Mississippi, a microbiologist friend who studies viruses and epidemics joined us. He and I had a marvelous time tracing outbreaks of yellow fever from tombstones. In Holly Springs, there is a small, fenced off section of the town cemetery that was consecrated as a Catholic cemetery for the nuns who died nursing yellow fever victims. “I’ve made my debut” is going on my list of fave epitaphs.

Prommie and baked are OK; she had a good bit of damage from Irene, but all humans and furbabies are safe.

@Mistress Cynica: I’m with you on graveyards. Being raised in New England, a trip to the old graveyard was a trip back in time.

Graveyards were also a good place for mild forms of adolescent misbehavior. My friends and I were always respectful.

@lynnlightfoot: Smack in the heart of the University of Oregon campus, across from what is this year the “old” basketball arena, is the Pioneer Cemetery. Great place to lunch, contemplate, trip, and listen to students practice from the music school on the other side.

And down the street is another old-school cemetery, which is a great place to play midnight hide-and-seek and catch poison ivy in your crotch the weekend before your philosophy comp exams.

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