Saturday, February 26, 2011

It all started with the Oscars

SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE had just beaten SAVING PRIVATE RYAN for film of the year. Steven Spielberg, who had already won Oscars for SCHINDLER’S LIST in every category except Best Animated Short was really pissed. And this was mere moments after he won another Oscar for directing SAVING PRIVATE RYAN (which was very well deserved, by the way). I thought it was a little ungracious. So I decided to write a humorous review of the ceremony, poke a bit of fun at Hollywood royalty, and email it to the hundred or so people in my address list.

The response was so positive that I did it again the following year. By then my list had grown to at least 104. I added the Emmys (talk about an easy target) and also goofy travelogues (I was getting tired of writing the same travel report ten times to ten friends).

Once I compiled enough of these travelogues I investigated getting them all published as a book. The idea was met with zero interest. But one kindly editor said, “These are very funny and if Dave Barry had written them I’d publish them tomorrow. But no one knows who the fuck you are.”

So how do I become more well-known? First thought was a publicist until I saw what they charged. Yikes! I wanted a little higher visibility; I didn’t want to be Justin Bieber so paying big money to get my name in the Long Beach Telegram a few times a year didn’t make sense. Nor did killing anybody or lying about my age and going on AMERICAN IDOL.

Then my friend Howard suggested writing a blog. (This is beginning to sound like one of those old cigarette commercials. Then my priest said, “Hey, have you tried Viceroys?”)

A blog wouldn’t cost anything save for time. Who knows? It could lead to a big book deal, major speaking engagements, or taking over for Carson Daly (if not me than ANYBODY). Well, none of those things happened but the blog has been great fun to do. And it has gained some popularity – thanks in part to my annual Oscar review.

By the way, I have compiled those travelogues and the book should be coming out within a few weeks. Get ready to fire up your Kindle.  

Anyway, tomorrow night I shall once again review the Academy Awards.  I have a lot of new readers this year (bless you all) so tomorrow I will post a few samples from past Oscar reviews.  And Monday morning the new one will be up. 

Just think, if Steven Spielberg had only clapped when SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE won none of this would have happened.

UPDATE:  A commenter asked if I could post that original Oscar review.  Sure.  I'll dig it up from four computers ago and post it early this afternoon.  So check back.  (See, I really do read the comments.)

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