Daily Archives: July 7, 2017

the day I met archie bunker

hollywood-editI don’t want to brag , but I grew up in Hollywood , and Hollywood is full of movie stars .

Well , putting any questions aside for the moment of whether I have in the end grown up at all or not  , I will be frank and say that I didn’t actually grow up in Hollywood . I want to be honest . Hollywood is about ten miles from where I grew up , I think . But still ………..

I remember the host of some long -past entertainment show standing in front of the Santa Monica pier and beginning the show with the words : ” Here we are in the heart of Hollywood . ”  So you see  my point . Hollywood was once Hollywood , but is now a state of mind .achie bunker

I lived in the actual Hollywood once . For ten years or so . Hollywood isn’t actually a city now ; it’s a part of Los Angeles ( since 1910 ) , the City of Angels , the huge metropolis , the megalopolis  . I feel sorry for unsuspecting people who come to Los Angeles and expect to find a city. Oh , there is one there somewhere  , but …………..

Or Hollywood. There is a Hollywood , but …………..

A  Swiss guy , the friend of a friend , stayed with me for a few days once when I lived in Hollywood. He took the bus to downtown Los Angeles , thinking that he’d see Los Angeles . He came back depressed and disappointed . Well , what did he expect ? Los Angeles is not Los Angeles . Get real !

Hollywood isn’t Hollywood either , for that matter . My friend Ivan brought his girlfriend over for a visit once and he asked me to give her a tour of Hollywood . The three of us spent the day touring Hollywood. When we returned to the house , somewhat exhausted , she thanked me for the tour , but said : ” But next time maybe you could show us Hollywood. ”   Oh . What had I been thinking !  She wanted not the real Hollywood , but the state of mind. I should have known that morning before we left , I suppose . I’m a bit  slow . Always was .

Yet ,  and  I mean yet . There are those forces who are bound and determined to make Los Angeles a city once again , in the world-wide sense of a big city . Young people have moved downtown and trendy new restaurants have sprouted up around town . Old buildings are being re-fitted to house the pioneers who don’t mind breathing the downtown freeway soot and aren’t put off by the endless competition from homeless residents . There are artist lofts in previously abandoned floors of classy old structures .The Disney Hall and a new Cathedral were built. Things are indeed changing .

Anyway .  However .   This post is not about downtown Los Angeles . This post is about film stars and me .  So , let’s get to it so you can be awed and impressed .

When I was in high school I worked at Redman Van and Storage in Santa Monica . That’s a long story which I don’t want to go into in detail here . After a couple of years on the job , I was assigned to go around and collect appraisals on items that the company had damaged during transit , and to take items around to be repaired . I will say in passing that it always seemed  a little odd that the one item broken by the company in the move was often a priceless family heirloom ; but , hey , it is what it is . An heirloom is an heirloom .

One day I had an address in Santa Monica canyon , a lovely tree-covered area of expensive and somewhat secluded houses . I was to return an item to this address and I rang the bell and waited .

This was at the height of the Archie Bunker  All In The Family  TV show popularity . And , who do you think answered the door ? Yeah . Archie Bunker / Carroll O’Connor .

Nicest guy you’d ever want to meet . He asked me inside . He wanted to know a little about me , what my goals in life were , things like that . I was impressed with how down-to-earth and friendly the man was . That’s all .

End of story . So , maybe you’re impressed ? Awed , at least ?

 

 

 

 

 

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