Friday, October 15, 1999


I celebrated my first anniversary in SoCal by casting the I Ching. My first hexagram was #26 Heaven Within the Mountain, The Taming Power of the Great, and contained this interesting bit of ancient wisdom: "Not eating at home brings good fortune."

That very weekend I found myself at a barbecue hosted by Brian's girlfriend Allison [the same Allison who used to baby-sit for Jon Sperry's cousins back in NYC] Also at this barbecue were a couple named the Gershwins and Karen, a woman I met several parties ago and who works as a story editor at a production company. The Gershwins have recently pitched an idea for a sitcom, so I thought it prudent to send them one of my TV spec scripts. I also sent a script to Karen, my latest comedy, April Fool. Good fortune, I thought. But there's more.

I finally got hold of Peter Byck [the same Peter Byck who is somehow related to, who else: Jon Sperry] and we met for dinner (not at home). Peter told me of his father's plans to start a movie production company back home in Louisville. (This bit of news had already been leaked by Jane Halliday, who read it in the Courier Journal.) They are looking for a financial advisor type to help set up the business, so I recommended Bosworth Todd (Dave's daddy.) Turns out he is a long time pal and had already turned down the job. But, they were impressed with my connections. Peter gave me a script to read and I humbly offered some minor suggestions (I rewrote the whole opening scene.) Luckily, Peter liked my ideas and we are planning to meet again soon. [By the way, Peter used to work with Lauren Lazin and Chris Connelly at MTV, I met Chris when I was dating Sue Kennedy, as they grew up together in NYC, but that is a whole other story...] Anyway, more good fortune.

My second hexagram was #1 The Creative, Heaven, the primal force. I consider this a good hexagram for a screenwriter. I have recently come up with another script idea which I am pretty excited about. I am describing it as a retelling of the story of Sodom & Gomorra, but with aliens in L.A. Naturally it is a comedy. The I Ching also counseled, "in words of the past there lies a hidden treasure." So lately I've been reading the Bible and Aristotle's The Poetics, both downloaded from the Internet, of course.

But the real big news is that I have started running again. I stop off at Pan Pacific Park three times a week on my way home from work and do a few laps. It's been a little rough getting started, but tonight I actually felt good. That is not to say I won't be icing down my knees and ankles tonight, but the aches and pains are less bothersome after only three weeks.

Otherwise I've been working a lot and not writing very much. I'd like to take some time off and crank out this new script, but so long as the golden goose is laying, I'll keep collecting the eggs. I still have some debts to pay off. As Ringo Starr said: Time takes time.

As I was coming into work today I met my friend Dimitri, who moonlights as a trip-hop vocalist. I remarked on how I like the mornings better when the clouds roll in off the water and it's nice and cool. He said that's usually how it is here in the winter, then asked: "Is it winter?" It's hard to keep track of time here. They have some pumpkins and cornstalks in the lobby of our building to remind us that it's autumn (or is it winter?) But I can't help feeling that time is catching up with me. It probably has something to do with my next birthday.

I'll be in Connecticut the week of November 22-26 for some turkey and to check out my niece Annie's new tattoo. Crazy college kids! Hope everyone is doing well. Nice to hear from David Hamburger recently (he's playing guitar for a Broadway show). Send pictures so I can put them in my new screensaver -- jpegs or gifs work best. Time to go put ice on my aching joints.

Love, Hollywood D.

p.s. Congratulations to Ryan and Shannon. (They're engaged.)

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