Archive for January, 2012

SPRING CHATTEL
January 27, 2012

I must confess, just as Germaine Greer infiltrated Hefner’s Playboy Clubs and Jeff Sharlett infiltrated  Ivanwald, in Arlington, so did I.

Not as a scholar or historian, which I’m not,  but as a cat whose curiosity got the best of her. At the Potomac Point house, Ivanwald for young women, I arrived one day- an invited guest-I’ll never tell by whom- carrying  a cheap wicker suitcase with a hidden space in the  bottom.

The house was just across the road from the Cedars, and the place where young women came to serve. We cooked and cleaned and served the men. Some of them quite cute,  all of them there to be indoctrinated into this experimental religion.

Us girls were allowed to wear lipstick and dress  in feminine attire when on ‘duty’. I thought it pretty white of them, but, in the beginning, I kept the thought to myself. The ‘brothers’ as the men were called, did all the outside work and we watched;  but none of us was allowed to sit in on the meals because they were mostly ‘politics’ which the Bible  taught were reserved for the men.

Many of the girls dressed in cute little Eva Braun costumes. This group had great affection for Hitler’s style, as one of the girls reminded me.  “Hitler never looked at another woman once he met Eva,” she said. The Norwegian founder of this avant garde American fundamentalist group, Abraham Veride,  had a complicated fondness for Nazis. Many  joined his early prayer circles in the postwar years.

I was not interested, at that time, in their political or economic philosophy, I was interested in their brainwashing techniques.  So early on, at night, before going to bed, I broke the rules. I’d dig around in the secret bottom of my  suitcase and haul out some scandalous Victoria’s Secret goodies. The shocked and disapproving faces of some of them amused me, but, before long, I got some of the younger ones to play the game.  I had great fun sexing them up. Some of them surprised me.

In many ways the house on the Point was like Hugh Hefner’s Bunny Hutches, except no one was invited to spend the night with Doug Coe. He was so cute and the guy who took Abram’s place when Abrams went to heaven. Coe was the one who really knew Jesus and we were taught in the house to emulate  his wife, Jan, who deserved much of the credit for her husband’s work. She was “So uncomplaining. Staying put and waiting patiently.”

I would like to end this by saying, like Jeff and Germaine,  i went home and wrote an expose about this crew, but I didn’t. I took it for as long as I could. Enjoyed a few secret moments peering with a few others I took with me, watching them play ‘Fumble’ a weird wrestling snake games on the floor inside the house. ‘It’s  scripture in action,” one of the girls informed me.

“”If that’s scripture,” I said, “I’ll pass.”

But i did spring a few cuties. Three of us packed and escaped that night. We keep in touch.

SUN DANCE 2012 AND THE SCAM
January 19, 2012

Before I get into what happened the morning I woke up saying,  “I’m going to Sun Dance,” I think I’d like to talk about why.

It seems to me, if you check it out and pay attention, the first things to go when times are bad are truth and laughter. One of my friends and readers agreed but said, “There’s nothing to laugh about, ”  and I disagree. Truth I can only reach for and espouse, and it usually starts a fight, but laughter is a gift- a special human quality that’s there, always deep inside-for all of us to search for and discover. It’s a cliché I know, but it’s still more truth than fiction, ‘laughter is the best medicine’ and I am a humorist at heart. I’d rather made people laugh than cry.

I’m thinking of that wonderful film starring Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman, The Bucket List. The joy and laughter expressed in that wonderful tale about two dying old blokes is priceless. You can also think of Aunty Mame and her experience during the Great Depression. Remember the line, “It’s your broker, he wants to say goodbye before jumping out the window.”? Don’t analyze it to death but think how it made us laugh even though there was nothing funny about the depression or jumping out a window.

Well, The Scam has that quality. The darling old scoundrel, Colonel Charles Warren Skinner and the husband of his bride to be accept the mess they’re in and come up with an answer that’s a giggle and a half and that’s what we need right now.

On the down side: all of us are aware of the mess we’re in today. Broke, out of work, homeless, kids going hungry, drugs, crime, all the social horrors that go go along with poverty.  Lost  in a wretched economic entanglement-wars and awful natural disasters- we find it difficult to carry on. We’ve almost lost hope. The world wallows in misery. Us, too. As all of you know I’m not an ostrich. I live in the real world, but I can find laughter and so can you.

What’s the answer?  Sun Dance and Robert Redford, of course.

What?

Yes! Yes! A thousand times YES.  What if this talented, generous  nature-loving man man could see what we see? The Scam, a tale that’s a ‘delight for the mind and a tickle for the funny bone’ as one of my readers put it and a perfect movie.

Everyone loves to make  films on Kauai. We’re a perfect location. Natural beauty from the mountains to the valleys to the ocean white with foam and the movie industry is a big industry.  A clean, fun, industry. ‘They’ make films here, just up the road at the National Botanical Garden, about dinosaurs. About pirates. Well, how about a film made on Kauai about Kauai? Put people to work. We need a sound stage. We need your great heart, Mr. Redford.  Your great  talent.  We need your help. And, I think, making The Scam is a perfect way to begin  a new and beautiful 2012 relationship.

It’ll be a big hit. It was banned in Boston.