Wednesday, August 24, 2016

The Magnificent Seven

Today is a special day at Poseidon's Underworld because this day - 8/24/16 - marks the seventh birthday of the site! In that very first post, I had almost no clue at all how the blog was going to proceed, nor how long I would continue, but I put forth a few notions and in many ways I've stuck to them, albeit adding in other features along the way. This anniversary period is ALWAYS a very hectic one for me personally. My company holds a convention the third week of August, which I attend, and once I'm back work is always piled up. And my own birthday is the 19th, so there are usually various things going on before and after that. Thus, I never get to really do the date up right the way I might like! This time, while I couldn't create a big, delicious post, I did manage to do something unusual. I submitted to an interview of sorts! One of my online friends and I were noting the upcoming anniversary date and we decided - sort of a challenge, I guess - that he could ask me seven questions and I would answer all honestly here! (In my typical, droning, lengthy fashion, of course!) Hopefully, you'll find it interesting. If not, I'll soon my back with more of my usual musings. I really don't try to make this site all about "ME" as a rule, and I am well aware that I am nobody, but on this one occasion I'm indulging just a bit. So on we go:

You rarely devote space at P.U. to music and musicians. Do you have a favorite song or singer?

That's interesting... As a child, music was so important to me. My second ever post describes some of the effect that The Sound of Music (1965) had on me and I was raised on cast album Broadway recordings as well as having music of the '70s and '80s always playing. I think when I started to develop my love of classic movies, music was shunted to the side a bit and then when I began to sing semi-professionally and in theatre, I was always occupied with the songs at hand more than any others. Also, as I have professed on the site often, I have never felt that I had any great TASTE in music (or anything else, really! LOL)

That said, I enjoy a wide variety of music. The music that always meant to most to me in my (now-dead) youth was from groups like Depeche Mode, Erasure, New Order, The Pet Shop Boys and so on. When pressed, I always gave my favorite song as "The Different Story" by Peter Schilling! In more recent years, and it does shame me to say this, that has been in ever-present danger of being eclipsed by Bosson's "One in a Million." The part at 2:18 never, ever, EVER fails to make me want to bleat along with the song. This is another typically insane thing of mine, but part of the verse (when he sings "I always will remember how I felt that day, a feeling indescribable to me") the music is HIGHLY SIMILAR to the theme from Airport '77! Ha ha!

But I also love certain films scores, some classical, vocalists like Matt Munro, Shirley Bassey, Rosemary Clooney, Tom Jones and, more recently, Lara Fabian (and, yes, even Josh Groban.) I really love 1960s pop such as from groups like The Association, The Supremes, Gary Puckett & The Union Gap. A recent find, thanks to the wondrous website The Redundant Variety Hour, was The Flirtations' "Nothing But a Heartache" which I've since listened to I know well over 100 times... I do get obsessed. I walk a lot outside and the sad answer to the question, "What's on his iPod?" is a lot of Back Street Boys, NYSNC, Britney Spears, David Guetta, Pitbull and other bouncy songs to keep me going.

We sort of know what you like in terms of movies and stars, but are there famous stars that you dislike, or even hate?

I receive e-mails from time to time from readers, some of who never take an active part in the site - such as leaving comments for example - who thank me for putting forth what is generally a positive and fair-minded blog. I have been told about, and in fact have occasionally experienced, places which draw a heated, ugly crowd of people who bicker, complain, tear-down and tend to stew in a vat of unpleasantness. Now I am snarky, sometimes derisive and bitchy - though mostly with a goal of pithiness tossed in! - but I knew from the start that I didn't want to work on a site that dwelt on the negative. I wanted it to be a place for fun and/or interest. You can likely tell which celebrities I am not particularly drawn to by their virtual omission from the posts, though there are some stars who are so iconic and have been written about so much that I simply don't spend much time on them myself whether I like them or not.

I have practically no interest at all in most contemporary film & TV stars, though sometimes one (like Chris Pine, for example) will capture my attention. There's no point in me writing about them, however, or posting photos of most of them as the Internet is saturated with sites that track their every move, outfit and appearance. I mentioned recently in the comment section of a post that my family often took stars' off-screen lives into account when determining our level of affection for them. Thus, I do sometimes bear a grudge against actors and actresses who have done something to offend my sensibilities and I then decide not to add any money to their bank accounts, nor give them any further attention or publicity. The bigger problem for me has been that I might find a new star that I really like a lot and then not long after, they seem to careen off the rails and go crazy!  LOL  Or their career just peters out entirely.

You've alluded to your sideline hobby of acting on stage. What is one of the most memorable experiences you've had in that arena?

Heavens to Betsy!  I've been performing for 22 years and have done more than 40 plays, so it's tough to narrow that down. I will say that the most physically and mentally challenging thing I ever did was the stage version of Stephen King's "Misery." Apart from a fifteen-minute Intermission, I never once left the stage for twenty scenes and was either in a bed or a wheelchair or having a foot cut off or fighting for my life! I did "1776" and mostly stayed quiet for the longest time until ripping into Thomas Jefferson and John Adams and then delivering the powerhouse number "Molasses to Rum," which was beyond exhilarating to do. A more recent moment came with the musical "The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas" in which I was the Sheriff. I heard my song and was completely horrified. However, I set to work on it, making it far more melodic and musical than the more clipped, sing-speak method that had most often been done and the result was winning a top regional award for it. That was immensely gratifying and unforgettable, but was also a blur as my eyes were filled with tears as I accepted it. It was marred only by the fact that I was overweight during it, which didn't matter for the role, but mattered when it came to my own self esteem. I have slowed down recently to maybe one show a year, but I hope I'm not completely done. It's something that has meant a lot to me (and educated me significantly about life and people) over the years.

What has been your most memorable celebrity encounter?

Again, that is so hard to choose! As someone who has always felt it worth crawling through broken glass to meet even the lowest rung celeb and yet who lives in a place where so few visit, each time has been memorable! I was recently joking with another online pal about how our local news runs stories whenever anyone of note comes here and does, well, anything! For example, Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani recently stopped for ice cream at an old dairy whip right in my suburb! And John Travolta has been filming a movie about a mile from my work. I haven't met a large number of celebrities. I think I can count them on my hands. But I think the zaniest and most unforgettable time was when I was at a Women's Health Expo with a female friend and out of 300 or so people Richard Simmons picked me out of the crowd to go up on stage and Sweat to the Oldies with him! Someone near me tried to go up, but he screamed out, "NO!!  YOU! In the red sweatshirt!" The song was "Jump!" by The Pointer Sisters and we interacted in a highly amusing way before getting down to the business of exercising. He was very flirty... never even attempted to act straight, but was so infectiously funny and animated. Afterwards, we chit-chatted for a while. I took the attached pic as he was entering the arena. It's been sad to see some of his recent issues come to light in the news media. He was quite inspiring to that gaggle of fans and to millions of others it seems.

If you could "live" inside one movie, which would it be?

Aaack!  Okay, now it's getting rough. It's a true statement - one I shouldn't admit because they will put me away - that I have never once been on a cruise because, as much as I love The Poseidon Adventure (1972), I always felt that taking one in which the ship remained right-side-up would be a complete and utter let-down.  LOL  In more recent years it's been either financial or work-related reasons why I don't go on one, but that was my standard answer for ages!

I don't even know if I can honestly answer this question because sometimes I love a film's settings, but the circumstances are dangerous or off-putting for one reason or another. You know, I still love the clean, austere design of the Von Trapp household (not to mention that ornate, gilded ballroom!) and Salzburg looks fun in The Sound of Music, so as long as the Nazis don't come, I'll say that. And what a back yard and veranda!

You love TV titles/opening credits and have featured them several times, but what movie opening credits rank amongst your most favorite?

I am so glad you asked this!! I have been meaning to get around to a post on this subject for years, but never have. I get a kick out of "cutesy" opening credits with animation like The Pink Panther movies or It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963), Grease (1978) and many others (which, of course, aren't springing to mind at the moment!), but generally I like opening credits because of the music or at least a combination of the music and visuals. I enjoy virtually all of the James Bond opening credits. One of my all-time favorites which is almost solely due to the music is the opening of Capricorn One (1977) (Link is just to the music, not the actual credits.) Oh my God, that pulsating Jerry Goldsmith music against the stark lettering... I love the way it keeps building. I love "stirring" types of scores and one that I adore also is Zulu (1964), and this link too is also just the music not the actual credits. I have a fondness for music in which there is a counterpart playing against the main theme (sorry, I'm too dumb to express the actual term for this!)

It goes without saying that I also worship all the opening credits for the great disaster movies from Airport (1970) to The Towering Inferno (1974) to Earthquake (1974), to name a few. One recently discovered favorite of mine is the opening theme to the mega-flop The Razor's Edge (1984), which I have listened to countless times. (Again, the link is just to the music - and takes 20 seconds to kick in!) But I just love opening credits in general from the sweeping Gone with the Wind (1939) to the anxiety-laden strings of Psycho (1960) and many before, between and after.

Are we ever going to meet the man behind the name Poseidon and Poseidon's Underworld?

Well, I initially didn't reveal my name and who exactly I am because - as I mentioned earlier - no matter how pleasant or kind or friendly I intended to be, the Internet is filled to the brim with haters and destructive personalities and I was in no hurry to open myself up to that on a global level. But then again you also find as you get older, and I just turned forty-nine, that you care less and less as time goes by what venomous people think or have to say. There have been a few adept detectives who managed to gather up clues here and there and ultimately find me and every one of them (with the possible exception of one) were exceedingly friendly and enriching to know. The one who wasn't was never unkind to me, just excruciatingly negative about so many other people and things and picked fights all over the worldwide web and I felt that in time I would, however inadvertently, become a target, too, so I got out and away pretty quickly. Life's too short for all that.

I've wanted to "come out" - as it were - for a couple of years now and always intend to, but I am hyper-critical of myself and have been waiting for a time when I felt I looked my best yet that simply hasn't ever come! I'm a compulsive eater and tend to wreck my progress after a few weeks of dieting success. (I mean, I'm not someone that Richard Simmons is going to have to come and airlift out of my bed after knocking a wall down, but I'm probably 40 to 50 pounds heavier than I want to be.) This photo is from about a month or two ago, a two-person selfie that a friend took, who I've cropped out for privacy's sake.


I hope this didn't lull you into too deep a sleep!  I truly value all my readers and the wonderful remarks and information that is shared in the comments. It's been so gratifying to find an audience of friends who like and appreciate the same sort of show business related things that I do! I'm consistently amazed by the fact that the things I love are also held dear by others out there. We are our own special club and it's my pleasure to put forth anything I can for others to see and enjoy! Thank you all very much for your time and attention.


normadesmond said...

happy anniversary darling, you look just great! in 15 years you'll be old &
look back at yourself & think, "shit, i looked pretty good....why didn't i realize it?"

Anonymous said...

Congratulations, Poseidon. Your blog is always fun to read, and I've learned a lot of fun facts and about movies and TV shows I'd never heard of before.
Congratulations again.

AdamH said...

Happy anniversary! I've enjoyed your blog for so long I can't even remember how I found it. Keep up the good work.

John Bennett said...

Hi, I have been following this blog for a while now. I am always looking forward to all the various topics you post. It was really nice to have an interview about the person behind the scenes. Thanks for all you do to make us smile and remember when movies and television were special. Happy anniversary and best in the future.

Anonymous said...

Happy Anniversary and Happy Birthday, Poseidon! Thanks for all the fun, campy, informative, and titillating posts. I found your blog about 2 years ago when I came for Stephen Collins and stayed for Clint Walker. And, we were both tuned into same TV shows in the 70s and 80s. What a strange thrill it was to hear the catchy Bugaloos theme song again! Never did I suspect that my unwavering support of Benita Bizarre was my early attempt to cultivate campiness. Now I know.

Scooter said...

Congratulations on the milestone. Looking forward to many more exciting posts! Also, it was a big plus to see the face behind the name. Thanks for sharing!

On a related note, I've taken to streaming movies in my hotel when on business travel. Last week while in Philly, I watched one of your recommendations - The Adventurers. What a great recommendation - genuinely beautiful cinematography, all the "mod styles" from the 60s and a frothy, overwrought story line. I can't imagine a better way to spend an evening!

chris prouty said...

Happy Anniversary! Loved the interview, and your site remains a "never miss."

Gingerguy said...

Hi Poseidon, Happy Anniversary! at my job I read a lot online and it took me a long time to catch up with all the back posts, but the time spent was so enjoyable, I was "lost in a world made for you and me" to quote The Supremes. I am always staggered at the amount of research you put into this blog, and to think you have been doing it for this long! I feel part of a community of like minded people and it's been such a joy to find others who share the same interests. I was turned on to this site by one of my best friends, who has the exact same taste as I, and I look forward so much to new postings. 100% agreement about there being so much negativity on the web and I am so grateful not to participate in that in what I read or write (thought I do have a bitchy streak). I loved reading about your interests. We are in the same age group and I also loved Pet Shop Boys etc. I laugh now as I was so happy singing along to danceable songs about depression and suicide. Ditto on Matt Munro and will admit that my iPod selections are pretty campy. I walk around the supermarket listening to Elaine Stritch singing "Ladies Who Lunch". Opening credits are such a great topic for a post, hope you do one. "Sahara" is great, and "Arsenic And Old Lace" is super cute if you are a Halloween person like myself. I love the photo, and am also very hard on myself about weight so thanks for sharing that. I feel like you give a lot of yourself to this project and really want you to know how much we love it. We love it!

Rick Gould said...

Congrats on your Underworld Anniversary ; )

One of the reasons I enjoy your blog is because it's a fun mix of spice n' nice.

Keep up the great work, Rick

Manoel said...


I love all your posts.


petercox97 said...

i love your site for a million reasons, but mostly because there's rarely a time when i visit it that i don't smile. it's not often a labor of love can put so many smiles on so many faces.

paintbrush said...

Congratulations and many happy returns. Wishing you and your blog many happy and healthy years to come.

Sean Adams said...

I absolutely love your site and visit it daily. I work hard to match your wit, kindness, and intelligence. Congrats and please keep writing.

KP Knapp said...

Happy Anniversary. The Underworld is an absolute must read for new posts and also to re-read the classics. Thank you for all you do to entertain and make smile this sometimes hateful internet.

Musicals. Rock. said...

That was a very interesting read! In fact, I do enjoy it when you reveal little snippets of your life! I think I've re-read your meeting with George Chakris (sp? ) more than any other post...

On a different note, I so do want to know your tastes in present day films/ t.v. series/ celebrities. Looking forward to a post if you ever cook up anything that caught your fancy.

Poseidon3 said...

Hello there, my loves! Thank you so much for your heartwarming comments and congratulations!! I am a firm believer that you have to have run a blog for a while to truly understand the amount of work that goes into one, though some are easier than others. (Naturally, I had to pick a labor intensive format! LOL)

I appreciate all of you (and others who sent a private greeting) so much. Norma... I already do the looking back and realizing I wasn't half bad thing. I sure as hell don't want to slide further off course and be worse than I am now, weight-wise anyway. I know that time will march all over my face regardless. LOL

My thanks to Armando and AdamH!

John Bennett, thank you for commenting and for having such nice things to say. I think you're right, with the current (and overwhelming) glut of programming that generally things were special back when there was less, not that an occasional decent thing doesn't still sneak through now.

Klekface, I'm always delighted to know that I've converted someone into a fan of Clint Walker! ;-) It's a huge goal of mine to keep my favorite people and projects from sliding into an entertainment black hole! And... I never hear "The Bugaloos" theme song without it sticking in my head for a long while afterward.

Scooter!!! Wasn't that a truly jaw-dropping movie?! So elegant and yet so tacky. I almost killed my DVD player rewatching the fashion show over and over along with Candice's fateful turn on the swing. It's been a long while since I've watched that one and I've been craving it lately.

Chris, thank you, as always!

Oh my gosh, Gingerguy, you are so right about the lyrics to those alternative '80s songs. But, you know, I've always been so shallow that I hardly ever paid attention to lyrics! It was always about the beat or the melody for me. The one PSB song that I truly loved the lyrics to was the rather obscure "Later Tonight" because it almost PRECISELY summed up a love affair of mine that went awry. I still truly worship the little piano solo that takes place midway through it. So pretty. Thank you for all of your never-ending support and thoughtfulness.

Rick Gould, I love that: "fun mix of spice & nice!" :-D

Manoel, thank you for taking time to comment!! I appreciate it.

Petercox, that makes ME smile. I try!!

Paintbrush, thank you much for taking the opportunity to comment!

Sean Adams, thank you for your patronage and attention! Those are three admirable traits that I don't know that I fully possess, but I strive for them. ;-)

KP Knapp, every once in a while even I go back and reread certain posts. Often I have little memory of what I wrote because it always seems that I have to immediately head into the next one if I don't want a month to pass in-between them! Some I'm happier with than others, but occasionally I can take some pride in what I came up with. I'm glad you are entertained!

Musicals.Rock., meeting George was a thrill! Lee Meriwether, too. I could never forget that crazy day (or two!) Later, I discovered that George had also come to Vera-Ellen's childhood home and posed on her front porch. This house is like three blocks from where I currently live!! He's lucky I didn't know about and run over there for a photo op (photo bomb!) I guess that documentary on him is never going to see the light of day, but if it ever does, my fat face is going to be in it repeatedly because of how shamelessly I stalked him when he was here. LOL

* * Again, my heartfelt appreciation to all of you for commemorating this anniversary/birthday by chiming in with your thoughts and reflections! * *

Mark said...

Hey there Good Looking - Many, Many Congratulations on your anniversary.
Thanks you so much for all your hard work, it is truly appreciated and always enjoyed.


Joe said...

Happy anniversary! I love your site. Thanks for letting us get to know you a little better. I'm crazy about credit sequences, too, and wish Maurice Binder and Saul Bass were still around!

Percy said...

Happy Anniversary! I've been following your blog for years and very much identify with your old Hollywood sensibility and obsession with disaster films. May you continue to inform and astound for many, many years to come! (You look great by the way!)

Panalex said...

Happy anniversary and happy birthday, Poseidon! It's always a pleasure to read you. Far from being boring, I think this self-presentation was the best way to make your readers even more interested. And you are so right not to care about other people's negative attitudes at 49 – I'm a year older and have long felt this is the only true way to live. For as long as you feel like it, may you find the time to keep us intrigued!

Ken Anderson said...

Happy 7th!! And what a great and innovative way to celebrate the occasion. It's a treat to learn more about the personality behind the individual opinions and points of view I've enjoyed so long.
Wonderful idea and a job very well done!

Knuckles Girlyskirt said...

So, according to tradition, the seventh anniversary gift is copper.

Movie wise, I propose "Copper Canyon"

Which means, your anniversary celebrities are Ray Milland & Hedy Lamarr.

Here's to the next seven! Cheers!!!

DevilYouKnow said...

I'm late to the celebration but happy anniversary anyway! I truly love your blog and have you and you alone to thank for introducing me to (and making me revisit) hilariously bad films and tv shows. I'm also now an old magazine junkie/hoarder thanks to your always hilarious and insightful post.

Thank you for all you do and all the hard work you put into this blog. We all appreciate and love it so, so much. Here's to another seven years and many more to come!

Joe Hart said...

Love you and love your blog! And your picture is -- great!

joel65913 said...

Happy Anniversary Poseidon! I've had great fun reading through your treasure trove of posts all these years and look forward to doing so for a long time.

Congrats and thanks for all the detailed efforts!!

vinniepop said...

Happy Anniversary, Poseidon! From disaster movies and the Legion of Super Heroes to opening credits love and the Battle of the Network Stars, never has one blog tapped into so many of my favourite pop culture trappings. All the best wishes for many more great years to come!

Poseidon3 said...

Back for round two!

Mark, thanks so much for your kind remarks. I'm glad you like it here!

Joe, sometimes a contemporary film will surprise us and have some decent credits, but too often we get a title and who produced it and then that's it! No one seems to get that great opening titles can set a mood...

Thank you, Percy! Speaking of disaster films, one of the last pieces of my 1970s disaster movie DVD puzzle is about to fall into place. "City on Fire" was finally made available and I'm going to be ordering it this week! :-)

Panalex, I appreciate your viewpoint and your supportive remarks. Thanks for reading (for what must be many years now!) I appreciate it.

Hi Ken! Thanks so much for dropping in to help celebrate. You know how much I enjoy your site and I'm glad you like mine as well! :-D

DevilYouKnow, it's never too late for me to receive a compliment. LOL You could land on earth after being away for 2000 years and I could be all dried out and desiccated like the female astronaut in Planet of the Apes and I'd still manage to perk up and listen to something nice! Ha ha!! You're a gem to take time to say such remarks. Thanks!!

Joe Hart, thanks very much!! I'm feeling the love lately. I will have to try to remain worthy of it in the future.

Joel, always great to hear from you. You always add so much to my posts with your insightful comments and reflections of your own.

Vinniepop, I'm so happy you like these things and the rest. I was just thinking the other day how it strikes some sort of chord in me whenever I see "Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes" in that narrow, scrunched-together font... Those were the days!!! And, of course, we'll never see the likes of Battle of the Network Stars again... Thankfully, they did a lot of them and their begging for a decent DVD release. (I think some of them may have been put out? I haven't checked lately.) Thanks!

WonderPrincess said...

Happy Anniversary. I really enjoyed getting to know the man behind the site. A very good looking man, I must say. Thanks for all of your fun posts. 😊

Poseidon3 said...

Oh, you're very sweet, Wonder Princess. But it's just due to the fact that once "Knots Landing" got cancelled, I hired their lighting and camera people to follow me around any time I could afford it! LOL The real deal is less impressive if you ask me. Thanks!!