Kate finished finals last Friday and returned home that evening. Yesterday morning, I put her on a bus back to Washington where she will work and study this summer. And so begins the next phase in our relationship. The time at home will continue to dwindle as she makes her way in the world, needing our love and support without question, but being a physical presence in our lives will diminish bit by bit. While she proclaims she’ll be home next summer, it will be followed by her junior year aboard (Cairo, unless they blow themselves up).
We IM and speak by phone throughout the week so she’s certainly more in touch with us than when Deb and I attended college (had to get those calls home before 5 on Sundays when the rates went up). I suspect we’re more aware of her life and class activities than our parents knew about us and for that I’m grateful.
While she was home, much time was spent outfitting her for living in the dorm on her own. The new sophomore quarters has a kitchen so she needed a cookbook, measuring stuff, spices, etc. plus the usual assortment of cleaning products and paper goods. All serious steps towards a more independent life. We think we’ve prepped her pretty well. She can cook, bake, sew, knit, manage her time, and so on. Her new roommate, Mel, is a neat freak and has already ordered Kate to get binders to organize her desk so the OCD person in me is happy.
Riddle Me This
While feeling melancholy, let me say this about Frank Gorshin, who passed away earlier this week at age 72.
As an eight year old, the first person I learned to imitate was Gorshin’s Riddler laugh. A few years later, his presence drew me to a short-lived ABC series called The Kopycats (January 12, 1972 – April 5, 1972). Gorshin, along with George Kirby, Rich Little, Charlie Callas, Marilyn Michaels, and Fred Travalena. I loved the series, getting to see top impressionists have some fun. The one and only time I met Gorshin was at a convention green room. We were finishing our lunches and I turned to him and asked about the show, figuring he was sick to death about his green-clad counterpart. I wondered if the comedians tried to one up each other or break each other up during the making of those thirteen episodes. He shook his head, couldn’t remember anything like that and dropped the subject.
Still, I enjoyed his work as a comedian, as the Riddler, and even as Lokai in the ham-fisted Star Trek episode that brought him an Emmy nomination.
When I saw Revenge of the Sith the other night, we were treated to five trailers for summer flicks and two of them were from the comics. Batman Begins was, in my estimation, the superior trailer from a structurally standpoint. It gave you sense of what the story was about and who the main characters were while still showing enough quick clips to entice you with the gadgets, weaponry, and action. The Fantastic Four, though, didn’t work. It also introduced the characters but not long enough at any one moment, to make a connection with the mass audience still unfamiliar with the comic book. You have no feel for the family aspect, which is supposed to be the foundation for the story nor do you understand the connection with Dr. Doom (whose outfit isn’t anywhere near as cool as it should be). Even the glimpses of their powers wasn’t enticing enough. Although, having said that, the best visual for the powers was Sue’s forcefields.
The other trailers were also more effective. We had the latest Mr. and Mrs. Smith trailer, which just looks so cool on many levels – the quintessential summer popcorn experience. The other cool popcorn film was War of the Worlds which comes with an impressive pedigree and one hopes a better story than A.I.. Cinderella Man looks very intriguing, the serious, weighty summer movie in the Seabiscuit/Road to Perdition category.
Still, the one that had audiences oohing and aahing (or in Katie’s case, squealing in delight), was the first Zorro trailer for this fall’s sequel, which we saw earlier in the week during Kingdom of Heaven. Interesting thing about Kingdom which worked better than Troy or Alexander is that it stuck more or less to the facts. Kate, who has studied this in school, was telling us which elements were from history and which were from the filmmakers’ imaginations. The look and feel to the film and the consequences of the various decisions made, provided us with a superior historic epic and a better audience experience. Worth a look before it gets buried by the popcorn pictures.