Some Like it Hot – #SoCS

It’s Saturday, and we have a special guest at the bar. Bestselling author, Bradley Lewis is joining David, myself and, um, Skippy as we share a few beverages and attempt to deal with Linda G. Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt:

“Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is ‘mini/maxi.’ Use ‘mini’ (the smallest of something) or ‘maxi’ (the largest) or both in your post. Have fun!”

I think we can have fun, including Skippy. Actually, Skippy is Brad’s namesake. Brad (Lewis) likes Skippy and has complicated my efforts to cast him in a negative light by encouraging me to feature him behind the bar, thereby helping him grow a fanbase.

If we were having a beer, you’d be happy to meet our special guest.

“I’m sorry sir, but you can’t sit in that stool. COVID regulations.”

“Skippy, Brad is our guest. He’s part of our group, so he can sit here. Correct?”

“I don’t understand, Dan.”

“I’m sorry, Brad, I think he’s confused about the names.”

“Dan, Skippy is just confused in general.”

“True, David. Let’s see if I can straighten this out. Skippy, this is Brad Lewis, he’s our guest today.”

“Brad Lewis the author?”

“Yes.”

“Wow, I’m like a fan of yours. It’s great to meet you. It’s funny, we have the same name.”

“I thought your name was Skippy.”

“No, Mr. Lewis, that’s just what they call me. You know, because they’re old and stuff.”

“Old, hmmmm, OK. I guess I’ll call you Skippy, too.”

“OK, now that the introductions and insults are complete, Skippy, how about you get us some drinks?”

“No problem. You guys want your usual?”

“David and I do. What would you like Brad?”

“I’d like a single malt Scotch and a beer back. Do you have Guinness?”

“Scotch or beer?”

“Guinness, for the beer. I think I see a bottle of Macallan twenty-five, you can pour that for the scotch.”

“Any particular kind of glass, Mr. Lewis?”

“A clean one would be nice.”

“I’ll be back with all of these in a bit.”

“He really is all you promised, Dan.”

“Yeah, sorry about that, Brad. Anyway, I invited you here to celebrate your new book. We can drink a toast to it, at some point, but maybe you could give David a quick synopsis.”

“Well, it’s a critique and discussion of four classic fifties comedies; a coffee table book complete with photos.”

“That sounds like a fun read, just what I have been looking for. Did you already buy a copy, Dan?”

“I did, David and no, you can’t borrow it.”

“OK, Corona for Dan, a John Howell’s special for David, and a glass of scotch and a Guinness for Brad. I have to say, Dan, your buddies have way better taste in alcohol than you do.”

“Thanks Skippy. Off you go.”

“Nicely done, Dan. Brad, here’s to the success of…, um, I don’t think I caught the title.”

Well, Nobody’s Perfect.”

“Granted, but what’s the title of your book?”

“Geeze, it’s like I invited Abbot and Costello for drinks. David, ‘Well, Nobody’s Perfect’ is the title of Brad’s new book.”

“Oh. Sorry. What are the four movies?”

“It’s OK, David. I couldn’t resist the play on words there. The movies are, ‘Some Like it Hot,’ ‘Mister Roberts,’ ‘Guys and Dolls,’ and ‘How to Marry a Millionaire.’ “

“Those are great movies. Dan, are you old enough to remember seeing any of those?”

“Not when they were first released, I mean I wasn’t released until the mid-fifties, but I’ve seen them all, more than once. Brad, what made you pick those four?”

“I chose the four for this book, Dan, because they had a pronounced effect on me, one that resonates to this day whenever I see them again or revisit some old clips. Granted, as a child, I saw two of these in the theater, and my bar for enjoyment was set pretty low then. Yet, each time I saw the movies years later, I found something new that intrigued me; a complicated dance, a striking set, a missed joke line, or perhaps a song.”

“Like Brad, I saw some of these in the theater. I can tell you, Dan, you missed something if you’ve only seen them on TV.”

“I’m sorry, David, the only movies I saw in the theater in the fifties were shown during the Saturday morning kids double-feature, you know, ‘The Blob,’ ‘Godzilla,’ stuff like that.”

“David’s right, Dan. Going to the movies was the hot ticket in the fifties. We lived only a half a block from the Rockwellian theater. It wasn’t a lavish spectacle, like the maxi-plexes of today, more like a mini-plex, but it was perfect for a child on a drizzly Saturday morning. I rarely missed a Saturday double feature that included a cartoon or newsreel of some kind; comfortably tucked away inside the plush maroon velour seat.”

“Those certainly were the glory days. Wow, these drinks went down fast. Skippy, can we get another round?”

“Sure, David. You guys want some food?”

“Maybe when the drinks get here. One thing at a time, Skippy.”

“No problem.”

“Brad, when I ordered the book, the blurb said that the fifties are the decade that changed the movies. What do you mean by that?”

“The fifties began the final hurrah of the studio system, Dan, and a break with censorship. Additionally, the use of the wide Cinemascope screen and the increased use of Technicolor was a departure from prior decades.”

“David, you may not know this, but Brad did some acting.”

“Really? Anything I might recognize?”

“Probably not. I spent many years on soaps, As the Stomach, I mean World Turns, Guiding Light, Love of Life and pitching products in commercials. I did one carpet series for two years. I was fired and replaced by Bryan Cranston.”

“Bryan Cranston? From Breaking Bad? Oh, here are the drinks. Did you know him?”

“Uh, no, not at the time, Skippy. Why are there cherries in my scotch?”

“Ok, sorry, those go in David’s bourbon. I’ll get a napkin.”

“Um, Skippy.”

“Yes David?”

“New cherries, please.”

“OK.”

“So, Brad, is the book mainly a review of these movies?”

“It’s a little more than that, David. I hope to present some of the things I was talking about earlier about movies in the fifties, including a collection of the difficulties unbeknownst to the moviegoing audiences of that period, as well as a few personal encounters with the production people and actors.”

“It sounds wonderful. Now, Brad, I just googled your Amazon Author Page. You’ve written biographies, medical thrillers, historical fiction, personal history, what made you decide to write this book?”

“I was thinking about things that are personal to me, things that conjure up fond memories of my youth and subsequent life – things that stayed with me; things that had a profound influence on my thinking. While I truly enjoy both historical bios and strongly-researched medical fiction, I asked myself what would I enjoy looking at and reading; not a heavy read; Bradley light…So I felt that the movies were the ticket, no pun intended, and chose four of my favorite fifties movies. I even spoke of the connection the movie ‘house’, the seats, the candies, etc., including fifties history in the prologue. I will do this again, next time with four comedians from the fifties.”

“OK, David. Here are your cherries. Mr. Lewis, you can keep those. Did you guys want some food?”

“Let’s get a large pizza. Brad, since you’re the guest of honor, what would you like on it?”

“I’d like mushrooms, garlic, and pepperoni, if that’s ok with you guys.”

“That’s fine. Cheers Brad, and good luck with the book.”

Notes:

As you might expect with a post like this, more planning was required than Linda might like. I did my best to write in SoC style, and I only edited for typos.

Brad (Lewis) follows No Facilities on the blog’s Facebook page. If you want to direct a comment to him, that might be the better place. Otherwise, I’ll do my best to shuttle comments back and forth.

I bought the book on Amazon, US. You can also visit Brad’s author page, listed above.

58 comments

  1. This was a fun chat, Dan. Wish I knew it involved beer, I would have waited and read it later. Since I didn’t, I toasted with my coffee, which is as good as gold.

    First, learning about Linda’s stream of consciousness writing prompt and seeing what you presented was informative and fun. Maybe I’ll give it a shot (the other kind, also for later).

    Bradley Lewis is brand new to me. Witty chap, as I can see hear your conversation. I am sure his coffee table book on comedy movies of the ’50s can go down quite well.
    Wishing him the best with his new publication :)

    Say hi to your spaniel for me. I hope those squirrels know who’s the boss in their neighborhood.
    Loved the frozen leaf, caught between autumn and winter. Like Brad said, ‘Well, Nobody’s Perfect.”

    Cheers,
    Pat

    PS Was just chatting with hubby the other day that we haven’t been in a bar in such a long time. Now I’ve been in a virtual one ;)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Pat. Linda’s prompts are so much fun. You should check out the various ways people respond. I had this bar series in the works when I started. For a while, I alternated weeks, until I got up the nerve to try and incorporate the prompt into the bar banter. It keeps me on my toes.

      Brad is a witty chap. This book is a departure for him, but he’s very talented.

      Maddie is a very kind boss. She doesn’t bother with the squirrels. Cats are a different story, but the squirrels have free reign in our yard.

      I hope you have a nice weekend.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I had a flashback reading this to when I was quite young. At that time, I would walk to a local theatre almost every Sunday afternoon by myself, meet a friend, and then settle in to watch a double feature, news, cartoons, and previews. Yes, I’m vintage. :-)

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I still remember The Rankin Theater. My brother and I would walk up, and then he’d ditch me with a younger crowd so he could be with his friends. Then, exactly like you say, settle in for nice relaxing morning. Vintage is a good word.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Maddie would notice that. Unless you brought her a cookie. The State of Maine might notice as well, but apparently they have been introduced/reintroduced to areas in the past. The good news is they appear to be moving east, so you might see some at some point. Do you have grey squirrels? Black squirrels are a “morph” of grey squirrels.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Dan, you reminded me of the Rosa theater in my hometown. That small theater in a small town is still there after all these years, although I don’t know that it’s been open during the pandemic, but I hope it survives. Brings back memories of popcorn on the floor and the maroon velvet seats (must have been standard issue), but I could not honestly tell you the name of the last movie I watched there.

    Congrats to Brad Lewis on his new book! That’s a unique and interesting way to deliver a perspective on the four movies and the movie theater.

    Have a wonderful weekend, Dan, and keep feeding those poor, starving squirrels!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m glad that theater is still around. The Rankin Theater, where I watched movies in the 50s and early 60s is long gone, but the building is still there, and when I drive by when we visit my old home town, I still recall standing in line on the sidewalk. Such great memories.

      We are off to a dreary start today, but the squirrels have been fed. I hope you have a wonderful weekend.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Your squirrels look so glossy and healthy! Peanuts must agree with them. I love your frosty leaf and all the tree/sky/crow pictures. And Maddie in her plaid coat is a charmer, as always. As for young Brad … talk about a hot ticket! –Oh, did I say that out loud???

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hahaha – you did, Marian, but that’s OK, others are thinking it. The black squirrels’ coats do look good this time of year. They are so cute. We think the grey squirrels bring them along because they know we’ll go “awwwww” and toss a few peanuts.

      I walked by that leaf at first, but then decided to go back. I don’t know where the colors come from.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. On a Saturday morning my Mother would give me 50 cents for the move. There were cartoons, upcoming movies, a serial and the feature. I also got a drink and a popcorn for that princely sum. This would have been mid sixties. there were some great movies in the fifties. What a great idea for a book! We have all colours of squirrels here: red, grey, brown, black. I even saw a black one with a red tail once!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I remember going to the movies, and that 50 cents did get you a drink and either popcorn or a candy bar. I didn’t see these movies in the theater, but I remember watching them with my mom, on the afternoon movie. Sometimes, she’d let me watch Popeye, but sometimes there would be a movie she wanted to see. I still love watching those old movies. When Brad told me he was writing this book, I had just seen “Some Like it Hot” on some classic movies channel. Shortly after, I watched “Mr Roberts” – they really are classics.

      We saw a black squirrel with a reddish-brown tail last year. From what I’ve read, these guys are moving into our area from yours. Thanks for the duty-free export. I’m glad no one put a tariff on them.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. The light on that morning walk was gorgeous! Chilly, but gorgeous. 😀

    I’ve seen three of the movies Brad has in his book. I’ll have to find the 4th one to watch.
    Nice interview/guest at the bar this week. I used to love to go to the movies when I was a girl and watch double features. That was in the 70’s. I rarely go to the movies now.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. We’ve been walking just after sunrise, and we’ve been treated to some wonderful light.I didn’t walk Maddie much during the week last year. I Was newly retired and we hadn’t established a schedule. When they closed schools in March, I started walking her, and now it’s a thing. It has given me lots of opportunities to catch the early morning activity. I’ve been hoping to see the foxes again, but they haven’t been to the park.

      When Brad told me he was writing this book, I had just seen “Some Like it Hot” on some classic movies channel. Shortly after, I watched “Mr Roberts”. Now I want to see them again. I remember standing in line for movies in the 60’s. Back when parents could give their kids 50¢ and let them walk to the theater alone. It didn’t take long to catch up with other kids heading to the same place.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Since I’m an antique, I saw every one of these in the movies! We had two theatres in White Plains, NY….Lowe’s and RKO. Both on Main Street diagonally across the street from each other. Glorious theaters complete with dark red plush velvet covered seats, same color velvet drapes on stage, poor lighting, ushers with barely working flashlights, and the best buttered popcorn on earth! And I swear there were things that went “bump in the dark!”

    My favorite of these four still remains Mr. Roberts.

    Congratulations to Brad on his newest published book and my thanks for the trip down Memory Lane. Whoops! I just slipped on some popcorn and got jujubees stuck on my shoe!

    I see the squirrels are out in force, the little beggars! Interesting leaf….soon to be snow-covered.

    Maddie and her plaid coat has a definite mission Dan, so you better catch up with her. 🤗

    Great visit to the bar today!
    Ginger

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I love your description of the theater, Ginger. It’s so accurate, right down to the jujubees. Those things would probably rip my crown off today. I love these movies, although I only ever saw them on TV. They still remind me of days playing in the living room while my mom watched them, laughing at humor I probably didn’t always understand.

      Maddie has a mission, but she doesn’t really like walking in the fog, so we may skip today, as it’s not burning off here. IT looks like snow is on the way. That will make it feel like Christmas, and remind me why I like having retired.

      Maddie talked me into sitting outside yesterday. She was wearing he blue vest while laying in the sun. I did my best to feed to beggars that approached from all angles. I think they know what’s coming.

      Like

  8. A leaf with hoar frost, the earliest rays of sunlight across a field now that is a good start. How did it go bad with Skippy putting cherries in the single malt ? Then again it kinda leads right into the mundane and using the mundane as a reflection point on life. And I guess that should make Skippy feel like he fits in. Even if he just mostly fits in. Which is where the reference to the Blob fits in with movies in general. You know back in the old days when clean water was a luxury the alcohol was what cleaned the glasses. But lets not go that far back lest we discover it is still part of the future…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The alcohol cleaned the glasses and the CO2 fire extinguishers froze the Blob. Now, we dropped that in the frozen-forever Arctic, which is thawing as we speak. Time to pull the cherries out of our scotch and look toward the north, John. While Maddie and I are watching the sunrise, that thing might be oozing up from behind.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. ah yes the mostly, nearly, it will be safe there, frozen forever north. Pour me another one and don’t worry about the cherries. Or as another individual is fond of saying ‘what could go wrong ?’

        Liked by 1 person

  9. We could get into the movies free with the right number of bottle caps from whatever ‘pop’ was being promoted. Of course our movie theaters were a good 45 minute drive away. We had one closer, but it had closed down by the time I was old enough to go to the movies. The book looks amazing. Those are some great films he chose to highlight and I would imagine have some great stories intertwined in their history.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That was an interesting promotion. We could walk to the theater in town. It was maybe 15 minutes, but our parents just gave us the money and sent us off. I love the movies he chose for the book. I’ve seen them many times, and I’m looking forward to seeing them again after reading this,

      Liked by 1 person

  10. That was a fun post. My mom watched those daytime soaps, so maybe that’s why the young Mr. Lewis looks familiar. Your photos are beautiful. It’s interesting how very cold weather brings out the clear blue skies.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. My mom watched those soaps, too. Afterwards, we split between the afternoon movie and Popeye (imagine, only one TV in the whole house). That’s where I saw these movies for the first time. Our blue skies are hidden by fog today.

      Like

  11. “A clean one would be nice.”–Oh my gosh–that is such a ‘David’ line! I loved it. When I first saw Brad’s photo, I thought it was Jean-Paul Belmondo–serious lookalike!! Some Like it Hot and How to Marry a Millionaire–I loved those movies!! This was fun with Brad and Skippy. You have his character getting there….. Have a great weekend, Dan.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Even though the real Brad was ready to wrestle the real Skippy to the mat over a less-than-full pour of scotch, he likes my Skippy. Still, I have to work with the character I created. I’m not familiar with Jean-Paul Belmondo, I’ll have to look him up. Those movies are great. I’m sorry I didn’t get to see them in the theater, but I probably wouldn’t have understood most of the humor if I had.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Another fun dialogue and a great walk. Sammy is looking pretty content, chubby belly and all. I think you’re a squirrel whisperer. 😊 Hope you have a great day, Dan.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Gwen. We think the squirrels are working with Maddie. Maybe some kind of kickback scheme. Maddie drags us to the door as if she has to go out, and the squirrels are waiting at the steps. Then we walk around and come back in. Smokey doesn’t look like he’s starving, does he?

      Like

  13. Thanks for this intro to Brad’s writing, Dan. Brad– congrats on the book. Wishing you huge success.
    It’s a marvelous post, Dan. I’m a little concerned about having both versions of Brad in one place. What kind of Twilight Zone-ish calamity might happen if they clink glasses together in a toast?! I’ll be back next weekend to make sure the bar is still in our reality. :D Hugs on the wing.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hahaha – I am glad I decided to end the Brad/Skippy story line to these posts and just stick with Skippy. I didn’t know I’d be writing this post until this week, but it was nice not having to deal with Brad and Brad or old-Brad and young-Brad, especially since I included the picture of young-Brad (who Skippy does not resemble). I think the bar will still be here next week, although, I’m not sure who will be tending bar.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Every now and then we have to break the virtual covid rules, Brad, although groups of three are allowed in the real bar as well. I hope the book does well. It’s a new kind of adventure for Brad, but I can’t wait to read it.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Robbie. These are hard to work into the full set of SoCS rules. I do have to get some of the information up front. Although John Howell and I managed to co-write the post in email, that is very hard to schedule. I have read many of Brad’s books, and I’ve known about his deep understanding of Hollywood for a long time. I’m looking forward to my copy arriving.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Thanks for the introduction to Brad. Very interesting synopsis and I’m off to get the book. I’m also going to find the movies streaming somewhere. I think my father in law would love this so passing along to him too.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Some like it Hot and Mr. Roberts. I remember watching those with my family growing up. My Dad LOVED Mr. Roberts. Me too. So nice to meet Brad on many levels, not the least being his taste in drinks. 😉 I am always impressed by former Soap actors. Thanks for bringing him to the bar, Dan. Your yard children are quite bold. I don’t think I would sleep in on the weekend. They might end up on the edge of your bed. 🤭😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I remember watching these with my mother. Brad has good taste, in movies and alcohol, and his talents cross a lot of boundaries. I think the squirrels are working with Maddie. Sometimes, she goes to the door. We take her out, feed the squirrels and come back in. She does nothing, but walk around.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. This was both a great review of Brad’s new book, and a clever way of posting him along with his character Skippy at the bar. Well done, Dan! A terrific read. And, he picked four excellent movies.

    Liked by 2 people

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