Friday, September 30, 2011

Thursday, Sept 30th, 1976

Two subs today.

I added several pages to my other Journal.

Looks like it's more or less official about late next week. Dad's going to be off, too.

I talked with Constance today on the way to the bus and mentioned I knew her birthday was coming up. She seemed not only surprised but a little worried that I knew that so I guess I'll be skipping the card I had planned on sending.

Watched the original pilot for HAPPY DAYS on a LOVE, AMERICAN STYLE rerun. Was weird. Had Harold Gould and Susan Neher in place of Tom Bosley and Erin Moran. And no Fonz at all!

NOTES: The reason I knew Constance's birthday goes back to when I sat near her in the school auditorium a couple of weeks earlier. MY spooky memory immediately made note of her birthday when she mentioned it to her friend that day. To her, though, it must have come across like stalking. To me, it was just information gathering.

HAPPY DAYS was, at times, a great show. By the end, it was too stagey and too preachy and, of course, would literally define the term, "jump the shark." But in 1976, the fifties were still cool, Fonzie was still cool and HAPPY DAYS was still cool! The original pilot hadn't sold but, like many failed sitcom pilots, aired as an episode of the anthology series, LOVE, AMERICAN STYLE. If I remember correctly I HAD seen it when it first aired but here, several years later, the differences were a revelation making it seem like an Earh 2 episode. DC Comics fans will get that reference.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Wednesday, September 29th, 1976

Mr. S checked on my HORIZONS interest for next week's meeting and Mr. T really enjoyed one of my sentences in Comp.

A few new books out in Cincy already.

A new TBG gave me the chance to make out a new Undies Want List. 18 of 'em.

Saw part of THE MUPPET SHOW but the highlight of the evening was we got a much better view of Farrah's tits.

NOTES: Mr S was the previous year's English teacher, Mr. Spurlock. He was wondering here as to whether I had decided I wanted to be involved with the school literary and arts magazine. Mr. T here is Mr. Tucker, my then-current English teacher as opposed to the "I pity the fool" gentleman who would become big a few years later.

"Undies" here was my nickname for the adult, underground comics.

Muppets or Farrah's chest? We see what I prioritized at age 17. At my age now, I'd definitely prioritize Kermie and crew.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Tuesday, Sept 28th, 1976

I took WEIRD HEROES to school with me. Didn't help.

Several movies opening I want to see this week.

Rumor has us getting off early at the end of next week and at 2:30 for PTA from then on. We'll see how reliable that is.

Watched the Bronsons on TV again and ONE DAY AT A TIME made a triumphant comeback.

NOTES: Not sure what exactly it was that WEIRD HEROES didn't help. Didn't help pass the time in free periods? Didn't help me muddle through it? I seem to recall which volume of that multi-volume series it was (# 2) and that I never have finished getting through a couple of the stories so that could be it.

Charles Bronson had stolen Jill Ireland from his own former BFF, David (NCIS) McCallum. Unlike many similar showbiz situations, however, theirs seems to have been a genuine romance that lasted to her death. The two were paired together (probably at Charlie's insistence) in a number of films while the actor was still top box-office.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Monday, Sept 27th, 1976

Luck with buses today. Leaving early but missing the Rosedale, turned out the Latonia was early so I caught that!

Dad got sent to the doctor today but picked up coneys on his way home!


Big day for TV. Dick Van Dyke and MTM were on DINAH and the Bronsons were on MIKE DOUGLAS. Eve Plumb from THE BRADY BUNCH pulled a "Linda Blair" as DAWN tonight. a teenage whore. I alternated watching it with ALL'S FAIR. Very depressing and I decided I didn't need that so I skipped the ending.

NOTES: The Rosedale and Latonia buses were essentially the exact same route except for a variation toward the end of that route. Thus, as far as the distance between school and home, I could take either.

Not sure why my dad was "sent" to the doctor that day. Rarely sick a day in his life, somewhere in this period here he found out that he was diabetic. Hardly a crushing blow, he simply and relatively easily adjusted his diet, gave up Pepsi and chocolate drops, started taking daily pills and moved on. I was impressed. I'm supposed to be checked every few years but it's been a while.

Always fun to see Mary Tyler Moore and Dick Van Dyke reunited. The Bronsons were actor Charles Bronson and his wife Jill Ireland. After years of character roles, Charlie suddenly found himself one of the world's top box office attractions for a brief period and he and his wife became a modern Liz and Dick almost. No big scandals, though. They adored each other and when fickle fame moved on, they simply adjusted their jet-set lifestyle downward as needed. Sadly she died of cancer in the eighties but not before becoming quite the advocate for research.
DAWN: PORTRAIT OF A TEENAGE RUNAWAY. was exactly the type of thing Linda Blair had been doing and I'd be surprised if she hadn't had first refusal on it. It served well to help Eve Plumb from being hopelessly typecast as Jan Brady--at least at the time.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Sunday, Sept 26th, 1976

I spent most of the day around home seeing for sure that my pain from yesterday is gone and it appears it is...whatever it was. I did go with Dad to Kentucky Fried Chicken and White Castle even though we skipped church on account of rain. Spent the rest of the day reading, drawing and listening to records. Also a lot of thinking today--the kind that might lead to depression tomorrow. Hope not.

Mom made some more of those cereal things.

TV was good straight through from 6 PM to 11:30 tonight with a lovely Marlo appearing with Cos. Farrah guested on her hubby's show.

NOTES: If I'm remembering correctly--and I can't imagine I'd forget it--I never did have pain like that and I never found out what caused it that day. Since my parents knew I tended to exaggerate things like that, they never believed just how bad it felt, either and so never insisted on my getting to a doctor.

While all this was going on, another seminal disco era song, "Play That Funky Music, White Boy" by the group Wild Cherry was about to enter its third and final week at the top of the charts. I often wondered if it was the song or just the album cover, seen here, that caused the song to succeed as well as it did.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Saturday, Sept 25th, 1976

Checked out the PLAYBOYs at the Ohio Book Store today. When I start getting them I'll definitely be doing most of my collecting there. Also picked up a neat STARLOG and finally ran across the Marvel Calendar for next year.

While watching BYE BYE BIRDIE this afternoon, my chest began to hurt something awful and I didn't know what to do. I just sat there watching but everything hurt and attempts to move hurt worst. Finally I decided to get the blood flowing with IT to see if that would help. Direct result or not, the pain went away right afterwards.

NOTES: Maybe I was a bit of a hypochondriac. I don't know. I would occasionally have a tightness in my chest and I never knew what caused it. But I remember feeling that day as if I was having a heart attack. And it all seemed so surreal watching Ann-Margret cavort onscreen while it was happening. And yes, Ann-Margret or no Ann-Margret, the concept that I would decide that masturbation might help seems put it mildly...but that's what happened. And it worked! So...

In later years my wife twice took me to the ER for chest pains that weren't as bad as the ones I experienced that day. In both of those cases it was determined to have been severe indigestion.

STARLOG was my new favorite thing. STARLOG was a then-new magazine about science-fiction movies, TV, comics and novels. When STAR WARS hit the following summer the mag's sales would soar through the roof and it would continue to be popular for decades.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Friday, Sept 24th, 1976

Quick day in school. Absence excused. Designed debates in first and played chess (not me) in third.

Caught the Eastern bus over on Greenup into town to pick up dinner and three books. Missed one book and a sold out calendar.

Got a refund in the mail on that first bootleg I ordered along with a catalog of hundreds more!

Felt really awkward about the STAR TREK event tonight as Terry invited a couple of people along that I had never even heard about. Again! Didn't even ask. I enjoyed it all immensely though, in spite of the guests. In fact, they may have even added to the enjoyment!

They picked us up down at the telephone company at 7. The girl was quite beautiful but she smoked way too much. The man was a professor type. Terry never did tell me where he met him or what he does.

He parked down on the public landing by the Delta Queen and we had to walk up a huge spiral staircase to get to the Coliseum only to arrive just exactly as they opened the doors. Although the colder temps kept me from wearing my Trek shirt (I wore my leisure suit) but I saw that many others had my same idea.

We got fairly good seats down on the Coliseum floor but as usual the show started late. Why do shows always start late?

Some time after 8, the Klingons and the Feds who had been on stage at the mike were replaced by...RODDENBERRY! Yay! I enjoyed those best but missed the chance to see them again after the show. They included lots of scenes of break-ups and running into doors. Starting with the regular theme interspliced with cats and ending with the real NBC emblem, in between was lots of cussing (Yvonne Craig twice!), a little nudity, jokes, flubs, etc, Just hilarious!! I missed the jokes because the entire place was laughing so hard!
Roddenberry talked about TREK, his own career before and since, TV censors, religion. Vulcan sex lives, bionics, the future, the upcoming movie, the Space Shuttle and the fact that all three networks have already said they want STAR TREK back if the movie is a success.

The unseen pilot was shown. It was a black and white print print (illegible) by the fans and was run completely uncut! The most interesting thing about it to me was the title and the credits. It was entertaining but I'm glad they switched what they did for the actual series!

We never saw anyone selling programs but I bought a still, a poster and a couple of buttons. In order to avoid some traffic, we left about 10:45, not staying for the bloopers again. In all the big crowd as we were leaving, I accidentally brushed up against our lovely companion's behind. She's probably about 22. That was actually a highlight of the trip even with all the other neat stuff on stage and onscreen!

They got me home in time to watch the last of MAGNUM FORCE on TV. Doubt if I'm going to get to sleep tonight. A very big day topped off by my first piece of ass! What a way to end this section, though! Whew!

NOTES: Technically the show was called THE WORLD OF STAR TREK and was immortalized in part on an LP not long after this. Gene Roddenberry had become a guru to all of us who discovered STAR TREK more through the reruns than we had in the original run so it really was like seeing a rock star for all of us geeks that night.

To this day, I'm not sure who Terry's friends were or where he knew them from. The girl was much younger than the man and was either his daughter or his sister. It says volumes I guess when I wrote that copping an accidental feel was a highlight of this uber-nerd night! Sigh. I was so naive. Never saw her again. Terry would go on to invite "the Professor" along to various other events he and I had planned on attending together including, ultimately, the first time I attended a strip club five years later! (I presumed at the time it was the first time for Terry also but he says now it was not.)

Synchronicity being what it is, also in the crowd that night at Cincinnati's Riverfront Coliseum was a young woman named Rene King who was 15 years old and attending Conner High School in the next county. I wouldn't meet her until eleven years later but her love of STAR TREK was just one of many great qualities that led to our marriage in 1991. (Between the TREK event and our eventual meeting there would be one more bizarre, TWILIGHT ZONE-like incident that pointed toward our meeting. Read about it here.)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Thursday, Sept 23rd, 1976

I figured to be home today and the fact that I awoke at 3:30 AM and couldn't get back to sleep cinched that. As I lay there with my mind all fevery and such I kept thinking about making love to various actresses and girls from school. Sigh...

Mr Logsdon called about my absence and sounded skeptical. Jeez, Can't a guy be sick!?

Finished my Farrah collection and relocated all my old mags.

My cold was finally getting a little better by early this evening. I went over to work alone so I could go early enough to get back to see TV.This was the first day in ages where I didn't even set foot outside until after dark.

Watched the first Ford-Carter debate when I got back.

NOTES: Mr Logsdon was the Dean of Boys. I didn't have a lot of interaction with him but he was never my favorite person as he always seemed to have something against me for some reason.

"Finished" my Farrah collection. Ha! Little did I know just how much we would all be over-saturated with Farrah photos over the next year! And I was collecting a ton of 'em!

Jimmy Carter had come out of nowhere relatively late in the Presidential campaign season. With his toothy grin--comparable to the Osmonds and Farrah!--his soft, Southern accent, the peanut farmer jokes, the goofy brother, the feisty old was hard to take him seriously. And yet...we slowly started to do so. By this point, he was THE chosen Democratic candidate and we were all anxious to see how he held up against President Ford--a pleasant but ultimately ineffectual "filler" president whose wife Betty would, in the long run,arguably make more of an impact on society than he did.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Wednesday, Sept. 22nd, 1976

Cold day. The weather and me. Almost stayed home but I went.

ALICE is still on at Showcase. I'm surprised.

Them dummies next door were late again but I got back in time to watch Part 2 of THE RETURN OF BIGFOOT. I came up with a deal to alternate tonight's conflicting shows with Dad.

Not sure what I was expecting but I was somewhat (but not completely) disappointed with Farrah's much-publicized braless scene on CHARLIE'S ANGELS but lots of dun double entendres. Began my Farrah collection.

Wrote a real personal journal entry today.

NOTES: Still nursing a bad cold here, also, in 2011.


Farrah Fawcett-Majors was someone I had known on TV for a few years. I first recognized all that hair and teeth in commercials, then some TV-movies, then on David Janssen's HARRY O series. I knew Kate Jackson from DARK SHADOWS and several years on THE ROOKIES and Jaclyn Smith had been in a memorable episode of McCLOUD. These facts, added to the "braless" publicity, made CHARLIE'S ANGELS an immediate favorite. Thus I immediately started my Farrah picture collection. Soon enough the poster would arrive.

My entry in the school journal was a two page philosophical retrospective on life, innocence and sex, contrasting 1966 with 1976. In retrospect, pretty naive and surprisingly conservative.

Coincidentally enough, of course, I have a blog for each of those years currently!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Tuesday, Sept 21st, 1976

Slept bad and had to suffer through the whole day with a cold and a sore throat. The day's saving grace was the announcement that we'll be getting out early (at 11:45) on Friday.

Late start at SS tonight so I had to kinda fudge my way through quickly to see Pinky on HAPPY DAYS and then all the new shows.

NOTES: Odd how 1976 parallels 2011...or rather the other way around. As I write this, I have a cold and a sore throat. My son came home from school today talking about how they switched his Spanish room on him without telling anyone...just like it happened to me in '76!

"Pinky" was Pinky Tuscadero, a new character on ABC's big hit HAPPY DAYS designed to be a female "Fonzie" type. Played by Roz Kelly, in spite of the hype she was an unattractive character played by an unattractive actress (Sorry, Roz) and was soon replaced by Pinky's cuter sister, the early punk Rocker Suzi Quatro as "Leather Tuscadero."

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Monday, Sept 20th, 1976

I was kind of depressed for quite a lot of reasons today but didn't even realize it for a while.

We had a rather sexy sub in Government today and found out all about her--even that she smokes pot!

Saw Dick Van Dyke on one of the morning shows at school and then earlier tonight on his premiere along with all the other new shows.

Reese kept messing with me today and I kept trying to turn the other cheek and ignore him. Why can't these ignorant fools just leave people alone?

I didn't do well on a Spanish test due to the depression.

Read the new issue of LITERARY CAVALCADE in Study Hall.

Luck enabled me to see Linda Blair's scene in AIRPORT '75 without even having to see the rest of the film. She seems so familiar--like an old, old friend. Sigh...I wish.

NOTES: Can't recall where I saw the AIRPORT 1975 scene at this point as this was a year or more after I saw the film itself in the theater. Maybe it was on TV and I tuned in at just the right moment. Linda plays a little girl on the plane who's going for a kidney transplant. Helen Reddy as a nun sings to her. The scene is best remembered today for its parody version in AIRPLANE.

LITERARY CAVALCADE was a slightly more sophisticated version of the school mags like SCHOLASTIC SCOPE.

My sources say that Dick Van Dyke's variety series, VAN DYKE AND COMPANY, actually debuted 2 weeks earlier with a rerun of the 1975 special that served as a pilot so...don't know. The series is remembered today as the first major showcase for Andy Kaufman.

Poor Reese. In the long run his bullying was so ineffectual that I not only don't even recall him in the slightest. I don't feel like looking him up in the yearbook to jog my memory either. I am more than cool with letting him stay back there where he belongs.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Sunday, Sept. 19th, 1976

I cleaned my room all morning while watching a dumb "classic" musical.

Read PEANUTS JUBILEE and was surprised to find that, while PEANUTS is still my favorite strip, Schulz and I really don't agree on much otherwise.

Mom called Mrs. Pritchett and confirmed that the victim in a recent attempted murder-suicide was a girl I don't remember who used to live here in our building.

Several good shows on tonight including the premiere of COS and the return of good ol' six million (with Lady Bionic!).

Mom fixed some of her special (illegible) marshmallows.

I discovered some historical interest items such as notes from my first grade teacher that I didn't remember.

ALICE looks to be going off this week already. Oh, well.

NOTES: I took a magnifying glass to the illegible word and even showed my wife. No clue. I remember my mother making some kind of dessert dish from time to time with melted marshmallows a big dish but...not a clue. Sorry.

COS was Bill Cosby's third TV series after I SPY and THE BILL COSBY SHOW. The first was a lighthearted spy drama, the second a "relevant" sitcom. This was a hip but old-style variety series, perhaps best remembered for making Lola Falana a household name at the time and later featuring Groucho in one of his final TV appearances.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Saturday, Sept 18th, 1976

BIG DAY! After a good sleep, I awoke, watched a little TV and went over the river. Bought a couple mags and then went back to Book Market after deciding against getting Cheech again. There I saw but couldn't afford next year's Marvel calendar. I also spotted the thirty dollar PEANUTS JUBILEE in paper for only $7.95 so I did get that. Wow! What a deal. Also picked up a HUSTLER imitation. Not bad and a little cheaper!

Last week's plans for this afternoon went off well in spite of a faulty newspaper ad. I finally saw LOGAN'S RUN! Tonight, both STAR TREK and SPACE 1999 returned on TV and I saw a promo for THE Friday. Speaking of Trek, I saw their '77 calendar today, too.

THE ROCK AWARDS were on tonight. Paul won (naturally) Best Vocalist and Linda Blair accepted Best New Group on behalf of Hall and Oates. Man, she's gotten fat!

Lily hosted Saturday Night.

NOTES: Sorry, Linda. Yes, I suppose I was that shallow at the time. But I still love you.

THE ROCK MUSIC AWARDS were sort of a "People's Choice" version of the Grammys. This was only their second year and the show was hosted by the odd combination of Alice Cooper and Diana Ross. Not sure how long they lasted.

"Lily" was Lily Tomlin.

"Cheech" would have been Vaughn Bode's CHEECH WIZARD comic which I must have eventually gotten as I have it upstairs right now.

The Book Market was a downtown independent bookstore that was to become the first B. Dalton Bookseller in Cincinnati within a few years.

I had been a big PEANUTS fan all my life and had long collected the cheap paperback reprints. More recently I had even begun picking up the trades on better paper. This was, at the time, the biggest PEANUTS book yet!

Can't believe I didn't say more about LOGAN'S RUN. I quite enjoyed it and while it's reputation hasn't aged well, I still have a soft spot for the show and its subsequent TV spin-off.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Friday, Sept 17th, 1976

96 on the Government test. Neat! Did fairly well on 2nd Economics test, also. Funny day in Comp. Amy began a farewell collection for Mr. Shoe in Spanish. Mr. Spurlock was up as rotating study hall monitor.

The dumb correct change Coke machine at SS gave me my drink for just a quarter anyway.

Jerry Stein in the Post made ALICE seem a little less appetizing but I'm still thinking I'd like it.

Decided against putting in that order.

Saw Donny and Marie guest on Andy Williams' premiere tonight.

NOTES: The Osmonds had a long history with singer Andy Williams but my sources don't show Andy as even having a series at this time, network or syndicated! So not sure what I saw them on. Maybe it was on DONNY AND MARIE and I just wrote it wrong. They WERE on Friday so that would make sense.

The Coke machine at the Social Security office where I cleaned up was interesting because it was actually a Pepsi machine...only it also had Cokes in it. Somewhere I have a picture I took of it.

Friday, September 16, 2011

****EXTRA: A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to Spanish Class****

As written for my English Class Journal on Sept 16, 1976

Second period had just ended when I climbed up the three flights of stairs to my next class. My Spanish class was in room 308. I knew that. It had been almost a month since school started and I certainly knew where to go for Spanish. The door was locked however and in a few minutes five other Spanish Four students had joined us as well as the entire Spanish Three group of our split class. But the door remained locked. And there was no teacher.

Just then came James Newton Hart, longtime acquaintance and noted practical joker. "Everybody down to room 314," he shouted. Knowing his reputation, not a one of us moved. He smiled and started off toward room 314 himself though so all 15 or so of us followed along.

"Ha, ha, ha!" he laughed. "Fooled you all!" WE all turned as one and returned to room 308. Just then, Mr. Shoemaker appeared and groused, "I thought I told you to get those dummies down to room 314!" So off to room 34 it was. Eventually this was all resolved with 314 becoming for some reason our new home.

It's an oddly different room with the teacher's desk on the side facing the window. The Seniors all face the teacher, our desks surrounding his in a semi-circle. Then the class began to sound more like THE TONIGHT SHOW with everyone trading quips back and forth.

The best came when Mr. Shoemaker told Amy to stop bouncing one leg on the other and she replied that he didn't have to look at her legs. Without thinking, his response was, "Yes, I do"" which, as you might expect, broke up the whole class.

Later in the period, Tammy "stole" Mr. Shoemaker's watch. When he finally thought to look for it after about twenty minutes, someone immediately whispered, "Don't look at Tammy" and we all ended up with quite a lot of homework.

Thursday, Sept 16th, 1976

Basically a bad school day with my first Government test. Very funny Spanish class but we've moved to a whole new room. Of course, after I finally got a got desk just yesterday! We got out early and I tried but failed to get home by 3:30. At least I finally rode a B digit bus.

Planned to get my money order but they were actually out down at Kenny's. Guess I'll have to postpone ordering anything for now.

Dad was out late pitching horseshoes again tonight.

When I went over to the SS tonight, I unexpectedly found something cool--my first ever actual photo of fellatio! Was laying in the parking lot! Looked like it was from a sex manual of some sort and had been torn out. The text was in another language. Amazing stuff! I filed it away for later.

While at SS, I also found a review of that ALICE movie from a Louisville newspaper. Looks surprisingly good considering it's an exploitation film.

Been having very vivid dreams lately. Last night I dreamed about Sandy Hirsch from junior high being my secretary and me working at SS.

NOTES: Sandy Hirsch was a cool looking girl with very much a "Marcia Brady" look a few years earlier in seventh and eighth grades. I didn't really know her and didn't even really pay much attention to her which made it all the more unusual I would suddenly dream abut her.

I would get all my money orders at Kenny's, the corner grocery store. When we moved in in 1966, my dad used to send me down to the store which was then run by Kenny's parents. He would have me pick up cigarettes regularly. No one cared back then. Kenny kind of took over the store over the next decade but his aging parents still worked there until the early nineties when, I believe, they both passed away. The last time I was in the neighborhood, the store--long since converted partly into a deli--was still there, although I believe Kenny had offered it for sale at one point so he may be retired now.

I have no idea now what a "B digit bus" was.

Ah, that picture. That was, at the time, quite an odd but cool find. Literally just lying on the ground by the back door to the office when I went over that night. It was a smallish black and white picture and, in retrospect--just between you and me--the guy in the picture really didn't seem all that interested. But still...Yes, I had been purchasing HUSTLER but neither they nor any other newsstand mags offered hardcore pics in those days. There was no Internet, no cable, no video tapes, no hardcore mags and the X-rated theaters were few and far between in this area. I was seventeen and I had NEVER seen what you average 12 year old could probably find in under a minute today. Things change.

And no, I do NOT still have that picture. At least I don't THINK I do. ;)

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Wednesday, Sept. 15th, 1976

Slow day at school and at home both. Nothing special.

In Spanish, I finally got a good desk!

Over the river after school, I picked up dinner and bought 17 new books plus the TV GUIDE Fall preview issue!

Mom was off all day today.

I just saw the only episode of THE BIONIC WOMAN that I had missed before!

NOTES: The TV GUIDE Fall preview issues were sacred to me. For many years, I collected TV GUIDES in general just in case I ever needed to research them for anything...not that I would have had a clue where to look, mind you. Ultimately, a weekly mag, no matter how small, took up way too much room so I got rid of all the issues except the Fall Preview ones. I still have the Fall Preview issues from, I believe, 1972 through the early 2000's. That pic is from eBay, though, as I didn't feel like digging through my stacks!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

*****EXTRA*****SherryLou Toys

Take a moment today to check out the cool retro toys from our newest sponsor, SHERRYLOU TOYS! Take a look at their video above also where I actually make a surprise cameo appearance! I can now say I was in a movie with Godzilla! Even though we had no scenes together, 17 year old me would find that very cool! I know because 52 year old me does also!!

Tuesday, Sept 14th, 1976

TBG had some new TV news today.

Dad accidentally bought me another of last week's TV GUIDE. Just wasted a quarter.

Wrote about Teresa and the dog in my journal. Reads like a short story.

I plan to order some CAPTAIN BRITAIN this week as well as some other stuff from the new TBG.

An X-rated ALICE IN WONDERLAND looks good at Showcase but I doubt I'll see it.

We had an extra-long home room today that included an episode of SANFORD & SON. Mr. Tucker's comments on my bio in the other Journal were relieving and refreshing. I think I like this guy! I also got a dumb desk in Spanish.

Saw Dylan's "Hard Rain."

NOTES: You'll note that this was back when wasting a quarter actually meant something!

The story of "Teresa and the dog" involved a trip Debbie and I and a couple of other young girls had made to the Public Library back in the summer before sixth grade. We cut across a vacant lit that was overgrown with weeds and we ran across a dead dog. Teresa was a very sensitive girl and she insisted we say prayer over the dog before we went on. In my mind, we were intrepid adult adventurers crossing a plain. She knelt before the dog and I stood with my hand on her shoulder. It was a hot summer day and the other two stood impatiently beyond us, the sun glinting off the sweat on their arms and faces while vultures circled overhead. I had a good imagination.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN was the first major comic book series Marvel had published exclusively for the UK market with no US distribution at all. I was about to order 30 of the first 31 issues. It would be 20 years before I found the missing one on this side of the Atlantic.

Dylan's "Hard Rain" was, I believe, on some TV special that evening. I remember it was the first time I had heard the song or really seen Bob performing. It has remained one of my favorites of his songs ever since.

ALICE IN WONDERLAND was, in fact, an X-rated musical version...with really good songs! It was a softcore film starring Kristine DeBell and the actor who played the Urologist on THE BOB NEWHART SHOW! It would be a few years before I saw it but I quite enjoyed it. Ms DeBell went on to costar opposite Bill Murray and Jackie Chan and appear in a fun episode of NIGHT COURT. She even snagged a regular role on a soap until someone found the excised hardcore scenes she had originally shot for the film. The picture has become a cult film and, in fact, someone did do a live Off-Broadway version at one point!

No freakin' clue why we were watching Redd Foxx in Home Room.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Monday, Sept 13th, 1976

Fair day at school. Found out I got the only 100 on Friday's Economics test. Received a second best 88 on the Comp pre-test.

I read the required two chapters and wrote three and a half pages in my new Journal. One was about Omnicon and one on my five favorite authors.

Got home and saw the first episode of THE LORENZO & HENRIETTA MUSIC SHOW on Ch. 2 from Dayton.

Didn't get to go to SS 'til late and then rushed through so I could see the ABC Fall Preview Special which, in spite of some good moments, turned out to be not as spectacular as I had expected. Best was COS and CHARLIE'S ANGELS. All I can say is WOW on that one!

NOTES: I'm confused as to how this was the first episode of THE LORENZO & HENRIETTA MUSIC SHOW as I referenced watching an episode just over a month ago here in my journal. A rerun already? And why on Channel two. Dayton, about an hour North of here, had 4 channels--Channel 2, channel 7, channel 16 and channel 22. The first two we could get with a lot of "snow" if the atmospheric conditions were right. On rare occasions I could get 16, the NET/PBS channel. Only once was I able to get 22 and that was to watch the first GODZILLA...which as near as I could tell was set at the North Pole there was so much snow!

CHARLIE'S ANGELS would soon enough become the favorite TV show of every 17 year old male in the country.

In case you're curious, the five favorite authors I wrote about in my English Journal were:

Kurt Vonnegut, Jr

Steve Gerber

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Phillip Jose Farmer

Ray Bradbury

I still like them all but I think only Ray and maybe Kurt would still be on a favorites list made today.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Sunday, Sept 12th, 1976

The bus schedules change today.

Big list of upcoming movies in NOW this morning. I had to pass on LOGAN'S RUN but decided to instead see THE STRANGER & THE GUNFIGHTER flick at Ludlow and hope I can pick up the other one later. More than likely it'll stick around and I'd be willing to bet STRANGER won't. I think I made the right decision.

IT. Ugh! Ugh! Ugh! For the same results I had last Thursday, guess I'll need to lay low for awhile.

Mom salvaged me an 8 by 10 of FDR out of the trash at SS tonight.

Decided to let my sideburns grow again.

NOTES: Since I didn't drive--and wouldn't for another twelve years--I prided myself on always being up on the bus schedules. I modified an old, small lampshade to be a file for every Northern Kentucky bus schedule and kept them filed by number on top of an old television we used as a table in a corner of the living room.

NOW was the Sunday morning ENQUIRER entertainment section. Used to have 3-5 pages of movie opposed to today's quarter page of tiny ones. Sigh. I miss newspapers.

Always a history buff, I had for the past few years been interested in World war II and was very pleased to get the FDR photo even though it had ben pulled from the trash next door.

THE STRANGER & THE GUNFIGHTER was an odd but fun light-hearted spaghetti western/martial arts movie starring LEE VAN CLEEF from THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLT with Lo Lieh from THE FIVE FINGERS OF DEATH. It was produced by Sophia Loren's husband! Basically the pair was searching for a treasure by piecing together a map tattooed on the posteriors of various women in different towns.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Saturday, Sept 11th, 1976

Busy day. Up at 7 and watched some of the new (and old) kids shows. Saw Porky Pig, Mumbly, The Monkees, Electra Woman and Dyna-Girl(with Judy Strangis), Muggsy and my favorite of the bunch, BIG JOHN/LITTLE JOHN with Joyce Bulifant.

In between, I went over the river just briefly, purchasing nly my first book report of the year, THE ADVENTURE OF THE PEERLESS PEER by Phil Farmer. I passed it up constantly in hardcover but now it's in paperback.

Later in the afternoon I ordered the FLASHBACK of WORLD'S FINEST # 8. I also had every intention of seeing LOGAN'S RUN but the ol' stomach issues made me miss that bus so I ended up finally getting to see THE SHOOTIST instead at the Madison. Cheryl R. that I went to kindergarten with was working there selling the tickets. She's so pretty. I felt bad afterward due to the heat...even that it had been cold in the theater. I'll have to worry about catching LOGAN tomorrow.

A two hour Chaplin montage led into the evening. Ann-Margret was on the Perry Como Special and then watched Miss America with Mom just now.

NOTES: Judy Strangis had been a cute girl student on ROOM 222 a few seasons earlier. BIG JOHN, LITTLE JOHN was an attempt at a kid-friendly live-action sitcom about a grown man who changes from time to time into his pre-teen self. Joyce Bulifant I knew from game shows but the real stars were the great character actor Herb Edelman and the infamous (as THE BRADY BUNCH's Cousin Oliver) Robbie Rist. Rist as actually a popular child star of the day and a familiar face to anyone who watched television. In recent years, the somewhat more outrageous Rist has been a frequent voiceover artist for video games.

THE ADVENTURE OF THE PEERLESS PEER was sci-fi author Phillip Jose Farmer's version of a Sherlock Holmes tale.

FLASHBACK was a series published by Alan Light, the publisher of TBG, the comics newspaper I loved so much. Each issue was a black and white facsimile reprint of a rare Golden Age Comic book. I still have a few but this was when I ordered my first one.

Finally, I would have absolutely sworn that I saw THE SHOOTIST at a different theater. Interesting.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Friday, Sept. 10th, 1976

Got our first copy of THE OBSERVER in Government and our first test in Economics.

Had a free period in Spanish. Constance actually spoke to me today...and vice-versa! Saw Marie for the first time this year, too.

Took my notebook to school and was able to write 3 comics history chapters!

I was very down by the time I got home on that ridiculously crowded bus. Didn't help when I found we didn't get any mail.

Terry called and talked for over an hour but about nothing very important at all.

Dad got in late tonight and we got over to SS late, too, but worked fast.

Watched part of an ABC sneak peek of new Saturday morning shows.

NOTES: Just to put things in perspective, while all this Senior Year stuff was getting started for me, disco was king. The number one song on this date in '76 was "Shake, Shake, Shake (Shake Your Booty)" by KC and the Sunshine Band. To me this is the ultimate disco nightmare song. It was, I recall, the very first time, at age 17, that I had heard the term "booty" in this context.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Thursday, September 9th, 1976

I suppose I would have to consider school as bad today even though little happened either way. I did go ahead and subscribe to that newspaper the OBSERVER. I was moved to the opposite side of the room in English for no apparent reason.

It rained some today and a lot more tonight.

Chairman Mao died early today.

A third good flick is opening at Ludlow this weekend.

I actually enjoyed IT for a change. Big time. Let's just say I must have had a lot of tension that needed to be released!

Despite that bully still being there, Comp looks to be my favorite class at this point!

Dad went out to Dayton tonight. Earlier he had brought me a new (to me) comic he picked up at work.


NOTES: Almost as a throwaway I mentioned the passing of one of the most influential figures of the twentieth century. Communist Chinese dictator Mao Tse Tung was a murderer and a dictator but he also became one of the most important and iconic leaders of the world. I had read horror stories about his rise to power and yet grew up hearing him ridiculed by everyone from the Beatles to Rowan and Martin. I sat enraptured as President Nixon went to China and met with Chairman Mao, a last triumphant moment in his doomed administration. It was a significant loss to the world...and I at least noted it.

DELVECCHIO was a short-lived TV series about a cop studying to be a lawyer. It's pilot, entitled THE LAW, was the first time I had ever seen actor Judd Hirsch who went on to be a favorite for many years.

My dad went to Dayton, Kentucky (not Ohio) from time to time to pitch horseshoes. It was his version of a night out with the boys. Throughout most of my life, he was actually a championship horseshoe pitcher and we had a mantle full of trophies. Granted, horseshoes were kind of like bowling. They seemed to give some sort of trophy to everyone so no one would feel left out. I gave them all to his brother, also a horseshoe player, when my Dad died. Not sure whatever became of them now that he's long gone, too.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Wednesday, Sept 8th, 1976

No paper again but I went and bought one and then found that I should see two movies I missed during the summer this weekend. One uptown and one over at Newport.

School was up and down today with both my first A+ of the year and my first really tough Spanish class.

Began my new Composition Journal today with an intimate bio of...well, ME! Looking back, it wasn't complete.

Caught the early bus home and got here in time to catch the end of HOWDY DOODY.

NOTES: On the cover of my Composition Journal--seen here--is Red Sonja, the Marvel comics version of the Robert E Howard female barbarian character. Since most of you reading this probably already have a pretty good idea where I was at at age 17, I'll skip reprinting that introductory piece but I note that I paid a lot more attention to legibility on the school journal than on the home journal!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Tuesday, Sept 7th, 1976

Finally got my Economics book while everyone else was at lunch. Boy! Took 'em long enough to find one for me.

Kind of a busy day at school topped off by meeting Terry over the river afterwards. I passed up a chance to be an aid during 6th period. It's hell trying to get to my locker at the end of the day!

Anyway, we went to Ticketron and finally got the tickets for TREK. General admission.

I picked up dinner with what was left after the Economics book, a TV GUIDE and more tickets for dad. Then we went to the grand opening of the new Kidd's bookstore. Weird. Totally different. Not sure I like it at all.

Got home to find TBG, RBCC and a Con letter but still no records! Ugh!

Watched a preview of the new Saturday morning fare on CBS tonight. Not sure if I'm just outgrowing Saturday mornings or if this stuff just isn't as good as it used to be.

NOTES: In answer to that last question, that stuff just wasn't as good as it used to be. By the mid-seventies, Saturday morning was constrained by budgets and even more so by the bluenoses who wanted everything for kids to be cheery, happy and non-violent. Oh, and it also apparently had to be preachy and moralistic. Yeesh!

The old Kidd's bookstore had been a real favorite of mine. The new one...not so much. Can't remember now why they HAD to move but their new location a few blocks away seemed an attempt at modernizing. A sad, ultimately failed attempt at modernizing!

I was being very impatient about the records. In those days it was generally said that one should "allow-3-4 weeks for delivery" and that's often about how long it took. Nowadays with less mail, a package might get across the country in 2 business days.

As far as the locker, some things never change. My son came home today from High School and said he'd convinced them to give him a different, closer locker so he wouldn't miss the bus home!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Monday, Sept 6th, 1976

Spent the morning helping to clean the SS windows when I wasn't watching the telethon. Little interesting happened and certainly nothing that could top what happened overnight which I finally got to see clips of up in the afternoon. A reunion of Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis for the first time in 20 years!! What a scene! Wasn't easy but I talked Mom into pledging 50 dollars.

I fixed up my duo of notebooks to take in to school tomorrow. Washed and bathed. I'm ready for Senior Year!

I worked on even more ideas for redesigning my room.

Terry's supposed to meet me in Cincy after school tomorrow and we'll get STAR TREK tickets finally. He says if Tony gets money he'll go, too. I hope Tony doesn't get money.

NOTES: I hadn't even realized that Dean and Jerry had been a team until a couple of years earlier since they had broken up before my time. I knew Dean well from his TV shows and favorite movies like AIRPORT and I often described Jerry as my favorite actor as a child. The pair had a really odd love/hate relationship which one can psychoanalyze through Jerry's relatively recent book about their team subtitled --"A Love Story." The more I learned about them, the more significance this clip takes on.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Sunday, Sept 5th, 1976

The fact that IT occurred again with little feeling today leads me to suspect that perhaps the seeming maturity of my current surroundings has brought a sense of security and driven away much of the need. Hopefully the school atmosphere will remain as is.

The morning paper had a lovely ad for the Trek thing and said the price was $5.50. Later Terry agreed to meet me on Tuesday for a return trip to Ticketron to try again for seat choices.

I began my Shang-Chi Index. Also picked out a few unwanted comics when I sorted through my DC collection later.

The Groucho book turns out to be rather boring and mostly pointless.

Jerry's telethon began tonight as usual and even though I'm not as obsessed with it as I used to be I still watched some. There's always some good stuff still every year and I'd hate to miss it. In fact there was about ten minutes of an absolutely stunning Joey Heatherton!

NOTES: Reading this now, I am unceasingly amazed at how much guilt I hit myself with over masturbation. And how much I rationalized ways at ending it...that never worked.

That ad would be the one that I ran the other day for the STAR TREK show.

Shang-Chi was the lead character in Marvel Comics' series, MASTER OF KUNG-FU. Originally designed to both cash in on the martial arts movie craze of the early to mid-seventies as well as utilize the rights the company had picked up to the infamous "Fu Manchu" character, writer Doug Moench and artist Paul Gulacy had somehow made it into what I said both then and now was the best comic book of its day.

I thought the Groucho book I bought was THE MARX BROTHERS SCRAPBOOK but, in my mind at least, I remember LIKING that book a lot. I bought a lot of Groucho's books in those days, almost all of which were reissued in the seventies. So...not sure which one this would have been.

Jerry Lewis in 2011 is in the news this weekend because he is NOT involved with this year's telethon but for most of my life it was just the opposite. If one didn't think about Jerry more than once in any given year, that once would be on Labor Day weekend. And yes, I was always afraid I'd miss something. A couple of year's earlier, John and Yoko were on and I missed them. 1976 contained possibly the biggest surprise that was ever on the Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon...and I would miss it overnight. Luckily they reran it endlessly the next day. More on it tomorrow.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Saturday, September 4th, 1976

Missed THE MONKEES but caught BATMAN.

I met Terry on the bus to see FUTUREWORLD. Tony had been a maybe but he didn't show.

Got a few new books, too, and learned that the new lottery game starts this next week.

At Shillitos, we found the Ticketron outlet rather than going all the way to the Coliseum but it didn't do us any good. I did pick up a book by Groucho that they had on sale.

Mom was out shopping, also, and bought me notebooks, folders, a dictionary and a thesaurus.

Terry mentioned he'd seen some X-rated movies that were more than a little sickening. I can't see why but I may soon find out. Not at the Royal though as he says the films there are only about a half hour long and cost five dollars!!

FUTUREWORLD was really terrific, by the way, but a totally different feel from WESTWORLD. Barely seemed like they were related at all because of that.

NOTES: Not sure what the deal was with the Ticketron that day. Ultimately we did get tickets somewhere because we went. We'll see...

My mother would die a short five years later. Like most teenagers, I never thanked her enough. So, Mom, if I didn't thank you enough--and I most definitely did not--thank you now for doing all you did for me!

Not sure what it is with FUTUREWORLD but I barely remember it...and I watched it again just a few years ago on cable. It really is good but WESTWORLD, although little more than candy, had so many great scenes and memorable moments and its sequel, although well-made, does not.

I would find out eventually that the reason the Royal Theater stayed open in downtown Censornati was that, in spite of its Adults Only status, they would literally snip out all the explicit sex scenes in a film. Thus leaving the pictures about a half hour long. How they stayed in business into the early eighties I'll never know.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Friday, Sept 3rd, 1976

Things have begun to settle down at school and by next week should probably be back to more or less normal. Paid the five bucks to get THE OBSERVER and almost got my Economics textbook. I was literally next in line when they closed up the bookstore for the day. Best part of the day was when Amy (as in "...Once in Love With..." passed lemon drops down the entire front row.

I caught the # 6 back home (less crowded). When I go home I read a lot more of the new comics I picked up yesterday but still not all.

The Coliseum when I called gave me a special recording that didn't even mention the STAR TREK show but did say that the ticket office was open on weekends.

Tonight I watched a really good TV movie called DEATH AT LOVE HOUSE, after which I squashed what had to be one of the biggest spiders I have ever seen crawling across the floor. Surprisingly, it didn't freak me out.

NOTES: THE NATIONAL OBSERVER was a weekly newspaper for which we were required to get a subscription for Economics class. It was, as I recall, almost a NEW YORK TIMES LITE.

In spite of my allusion to the Ray Bolger song ONCE IN LOVE WITH AMY, I didn't really have a crush on this Amy. Just that that name always makes me think of that song or Pure Prairie League's AMIE.

I really don't recall much about DEATH AT LOVE HOUSE other than the fact it starred Kate Jackson and Robert Wagner along with great old-timers like Dorothy Lamour, Joan Blondell and John Carradine. Looks like the whole film is online to watch at the Internet Archive should you be interested.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Thursday, Sept 2nd, 1976

A rather boring day this time. Got my Spanish and Composition books finally. Mr. Burns, my Economics teacher, looks and talks like Ray Bolger, only shorter.

Constance actually spoke to ME this time. Just "hello" and "goodbye" but still! She stayed on the bus all the way to the courthouse for a change so I did, also, to see where she went. Turned out she just stayed at the bus stop. Guess she was transferring.

Since I was so close to home, I went on and changed clothes, then went over the river. Bell-Block News had 18 new comics out! After I picked up Wendys, I didn't even have enough for them all!

Had a long talk with Terry tonight about maybe going to see FUTUREWORLD and also something I almost overlooked going through the paper. THE WORLD OF STAR TREK is coming to Riverfront Coliseum. We may go get tickets on Saturday.

NOTES: Ultimately I learned a lot from MR. Burns, only some of it about Economics. In his own way, I think he was more a philosopher than a teacher.

FUTUREWORLD was the now little-remembered sequel to Michael Crichton's WESTWORLD. It starred Henry Fonda's son opposite Gwyneth Paltrow's Mom.

THE WORLD OF STAR TREK was basically Gene Roddenberry making a little money by doing a lecture tour about his by-then phenomenal STAR TREK while Paramount kept spinning its wheels about whether to revive it as a series for their proposed "Fourth Network" or to do it as a feature film. That decision wouldn't be made until after the success of STAR WARS nearly a year later. After that, STAR TREK: THE MOTION PICTURE would become inevitable.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

****EXTRA: Captain America****

I've been writing about a series of drawings I was making during this period in '76 featuring the Marvel Comics characters, THE AVENGERS. This one, numbered as A-6, was the sixth one I did and stars this summer's big movie hero, CAPTAIN AMERICA! Not TOO bad, I guess.

Wednesday, Sept 1st, 1976

NOTE: (2011) For the first time, I'm censoring myself here. Let's just say I had a particularly interesting dream about a generic female and...err...described it at some length and with rather "colorful" language. AHEM! Nudge, nudge. Wink, wink. You get the idea. Moving on:

Things went much smoother at school today. No problem at all getting into Spanish but the teacher forgot to give me a textbook. Helped carry up loads of books for Government Class.

Got my locker even though it is pretty far from any way out of the place. I saw Mark and met his totally opposite little brother. Barely saw Constance today and then just in passing. Saw Marie McClosky from the bus. Looks like that freak dropped the Comp class we were both in! Yay!

Turns out I gotta buy one book. We're required to keep a journal. Hahahaha.

Got rain all afternoon. I spent the day with thoughts of my dream in my head. Never had one quite that real before. If sex is really like that, maybe it isn't such a bad thing after all.

Reds were on tonight. Annette was on with Frankie's new show again, too and I actually forgot to watch PARTRIDGE FAMILY.

NOTES: Marie, in case you've forgotten, is the one whose actual sanity I questioned. As Senior Year went on, we'd become quite close platonically before that really started to show itself.

Yes, I was about to start a second journal. The pieces there are longer and more geared toward others (the teacher) reading them but I will, from time to time, share some of those here also as that particular journal is setting right next to me as I type this. Some are anecdotal, some poetry, some fiction, some book reports and some are surprisingly blog-like features!