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New Project For 92 Year old Kirk Douglas

 
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 15 May, 2009 03:20 pm
I have a house in Montecito, which is next door to Santa Barbara. I have four grandchildren that I visit there. Last week, there was a big fire in Santa Barbara and we debated whether we should go, we decided to risk it and drove up to Montecito. When we arrived, we got a phone call from one of our housekeepers, Aracelli, who is a single mother living with her beautiful four year old daughter Jessica. Aracelli was asked to evacuate because of the fire and had no place to go. Of course we took her in. The next day, she left to stay with relatives but we stayed in Montecito. That evening, we got a notice to be ready to evacuate, the wind had changed and the fire was coming closer. From our doorstep we could see the flames and smoke billowing on the mountainside. We debated about leaving but the order was not yet given to evacuate. I said, "let's stay," and my nervous wife, Anne, agreed but, she started to make preparations. She left the gate open in case the power went off and we were trapped. With our housekeeper Mary's help, she put the car in the driveway and loaded it with water and blankets. Then, she gathered up all of our personal effects and spent the rest of the night waiting. I was no help - I'm still wearing the plastic boot because of the broken bone in my foot. Don't tell anybody, but I slept through the whole thing. In the morning, the air was getting smoky so we left for Los Angeles. Eighty houses were destroyed and many thousands were forced to evacuate. I feel very sad for them. Mother Nature can be tough, but when that happens you not only have to protect yourself, you have to try to help others.
Reyn
 
  1  
Reply Fri 15 May, 2009 06:13 pm
@edgarblythe,
edgarblythe wrote:
[...] Don't tell anybody, but I slept through the whole thing. [...]

It must be nice to be able to sleep so soundly! Shocked Laughing
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 15 May, 2009 07:09 pm
I have slept through some situations where others would not be able to relax at all.
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ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Fri 15 May, 2009 07:44 pm
@edgarblythe,
These vignettes are great, eb.

I've given up on myspace - takes too long to load on my aging puter - so I've got to keep up with Mr. Douglas through your posts. Ta very much indeed.
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 May, 2009 03:43 pm
Victoria is a beautiful seven year old girl, the daughter of our housekeeper. They live with us. Victoria has become my friend. She draws pictures of me and my wife. I paste them on the wall in my den. Yesterday, she came back home waving an award she received from her school, "Respecting Other People". I was so proud of her. It's so important that children learn to respect others. In many parts of the world, children are taught to grow up and kill. They are not taught to respect each other. If all the children of the world were taught to respect others, we would have a peaceful world.
As I look at Victoria's award I decide to heat our pool now, two weeks early, so we can swim together. I have respect for my godchild.
Reyn
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 May, 2009 03:46 pm
@edgarblythe,
He writes well, and with feeling.

It sounds like he's very much in peace with himself.
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 May, 2009 03:53 pm
@Reyn,
For sure, reyn. Now I think I will heat up my pool. Care for a swim?
Reyn
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 May, 2009 04:16 pm
@edgarblythe,
I think I've forgotten how. It's probably has been some 30 years! Laughing

What kind of pool? Maybe I can sit in the shallow end?
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 May, 2009 06:24 pm
@Reyn,
Reyn wrote:

I think I've forgotten how. It's probably has been some 30 years! Laughing

What kind of pool? Maybe I can sit in the shallow end?


Only kidding. I don't have a pool, reyn.
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 12 Jun, 2009 10:30 pm
My Son, Michael
Current mood: jubilant
Things are looking up. The "iron boot" that I wore for six weeks because of a broken foot has been removed. I'm dancing again!

Last night was a wonderful evening. My son, Michael, received the AFI award for Lifetime Achievement. I received that award in 1991. Now this is the first time that a father and son have both received the Lifetime Achievement Award. I have mixed feelings, am I not too young to have a son receive the Lifetime Achievement Award? Nevertheless, it was a wonderful evening and they showed clips of most of Michael's pictures. I didn't realize Michael's versatility.

There was a quite a turnout: Sharon Stone, Jack Nicholson, Annette Bening, Warren Beatty, and on and on. The entertainment started with Catherine Zeta-Jones (my daughter-in-law) leading a group of dancers with a song and dance from Chicago. She was a hit! It was a nice nostalgic evening.
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 19 Jun, 2009 10:27 pm
Slavery, in many forms, still exists. For two years I have been working on the issue of a formal apology for the treatment of African-Americans before the Civil War and after the Civil War. On MySpace, about a year ago, I asked people to add their names to support a petition for such an apology. I formed a committee with Douglas Blackmon, the Pulitzer Prize winning author of "Slavery by Another Name" and Siddharth Kara, author of "Sex Trafficking: Inside the Business of Modern Slavery". Fortunately, the Senate just passed a resolution apologizing for slavery, with a more detailed version going back to the House of Representatives. Our committee won't have much work to do.
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 26 Jun, 2009 06:06 pm
This has been a sad week.

We don't like to think about it, but we all know that someday we will die. But, when someone dies young it makes us think about the preciousness of life.

I did a movie with Farrah Fawcett in London. What a beautiful girl with a great sense of humor.

Michael Jackson gave millions of people all over the world enjoyment. Yes, he had his problems. It's sad to think of such a great talent extinguished when his light was burning so brightly. It makes me think of the people in my profession that have died too young: Steve McQueen, Natalie Wood, Marilyn Monroe. I know the pain of personal tragedy, my son Eric died at 46. When I visit his grave every week I see fresh flowers at the gravesite of Marilyn Monroe (Joe DiMaggio arranged for their delivery every week after her death).

While we mourn for the deaths of young people like Michael Jackson and Farrah Fawcett, let us think about how precious life is and resolve to make it worthwhile.
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Wed 1 Jul, 2009 05:31 pm
Nobody knew me as long as Karl Malden knew me. I first met him when I worked with him doing summer stock during college vacation. Karl and Mona are great people, we started a friendship that continued for 70 years. I learned a lot from Karl and so did my son Michael. When he got the part in the TV series Streets of San Francisco I said to my son, "You are lucky. You will learn a lot from Karl." And he did. Karl took Michael under his wing and they had a fantastic relationship for four years, which continued to this day.

Karl was a great actor but always remained the simple guy from Gary, Indiana. I will miss him.
Reyn
 
  1  
Reply Wed 1 Jul, 2009 05:40 pm
@edgarblythe,
Thanks for posting that, Edgar. It's nice to hear from someone who knew Karl Malden personally.
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Sun 12 Jul, 2009 09:54 am
I wasn't going to tell you this story, but I can't resist. Not long ago, it was my 55th Wedding Anniversary. My wife said, "Honey, you never buy me anything. Oh, you send you assistant to buy me flowers or a gift, but you never go and pick out a gift yourself." I thought about that, she's right. So, I decided to get my wife a piece of jewelry, up to $5,000.00. I went to a famous jewelry store with my assistant Grace. They ushered me into a private room and they displayed many pieces of jewelry. I liked the first one I saw, a beautiful necklace and a matching bracelet. I said, "How much is that?" He said, "$800,000.00" I almost fell off my chair. And then I thought, perhaps he's thinking in terms of Euros. I said, "That's almost a million dollars!" He said, smilingly, "That's right." I said, "I wasn't thinking of spending that much money." He replied, "What where you thinking of?"

Now, I was embarrassed to tell him that I was thinking of something that cost $5,000.00 so I said, "I was thinking about $400,000.00." "Oh, we can't do that," he said. So I quickly exited with Grace saying over my shoulder, "we'll think about it." I was so anxious to get out of that store. I had Grace order a big bouquet of orchids (my wife's favorite flower) for our anniversary.

An hour later, my office called me, "The jewelry store just called, they have decided to give the necklace and the bracelet for $400,000.00" I gulped, "Tell them I'm so sorry, I just got my wife a present, maybe next time." And I breathed a sigh of relief.
Reyn
 
  1  
Reply Mon 13 Jul, 2009 11:18 am
@edgarblythe,
Laughing This is funny as hell, Edgar!

I don't know how much Kirk Douglas would be worth these days, but it must be a few bob, after the successful career he's had over all the years.

It's nice to see that even some well-off folks budget for their presents. In the end, I'm sure his wife appreciated that it wasn't how much he spent, but the fact that he personally decided on the gift, and didn't just say to his secretary, "Buy her a nice bunch of flowers."
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Mon 13 Jul, 2009 12:01 pm
I bet his 400,000 is like my 1,000.
Reyn
 
  1  
Reply Mon 13 Jul, 2009 12:15 pm
@edgarblythe,
edgarblythe wrote:

I bet his 400,000 is like my 1,000.

Laughing I bet his 400,000 is like my 100! Wink
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Tue 28 Jul, 2009 09:45 pm
And that's the way it is"

That's the way Walter Cronkite signed off his news program. For many years, I listed to him. He was known as "the man you can trust" and he was beloved by millions of people. He died last week and was mourned by the world.

Anne and I became friends of Walter's and his wife Betsy after he had retired. What a wonderful couple! Our friendship began at a luncheon in New York. Betsy called to say that Walter was not feeling well and maybe we could cancel our luncheon. I said, with my rough sense of humor, "Well, leave him at home and you come with us." Walter endorsed that plan and we had lunch together. This gave us the opportunity to really get to know what a charming person Betsy was. When we were all together, everyone focused so much attention on Walter, you didn't get much of a chance to know Betsy. I think Walter was very impressed with our luncheon, and our friendship became stronger. Whenever we came to New York, we got together.

Walter was an amazing human being and the most important person in his life was his wife Betsy. And that's the way it is.
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 14 Aug, 2009 07:22 pm
Recently, I did a one man show, "Before I Forget". I only did 6 performances, they wanted more but I realized that to do a one man show for an hour and a half, I should be 50 years younger.
But now, they are developing a DVD on the show. But, the catch is I have to re-do 3 small sections this week. I hope I can do it, because I'm planning on giving a DVD to each member of my family for Christmas.

It was hard work doing the show but it was very interesting because at my age it forces me to take inventory and evaluate all the things that have happened in my life - good or bad, and try to find out why.
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