South End Of A Northbound…

A Geezer’s Notebook, By Jim Foster

I am constantly being amazed by the Hollywood films and made-for-TV movies we see lately. Life-like zombies staggering down the street, scruffy aliens hovering over Washington in giant spaceships, (although today that’s not a bad idea, I’d be willing to chip in a few bucks to help pay for their gas) ghouls, goblins and monsters abound and even though only demented TV addicts watch them I have to admit the films are extremely well done.

I watched Snow White and the Huntsman one night and had to be sedated. More blood flowed than a Red Cross blood donor clinic and that was just minutes into the movie and it got worse. Evil step-mothers make very bad queens. That is something to keep in mind if you are royalty and planning to remarry. Even if a step-mother is the sweetest thing ever, by the time the British press gets finished with her she will be a raving maniac.

When we were kids the scariest thing ever shown at the old Oxford theatre on Danforth Avenue was Ma Kettle first thing in the morning. Even the giant man-eating spiders chasing Tarzan didn’t keep me awake at night. Now that I think about it what did puzzle me back then was why Johnny Weissmuller had bigger boobs than Maureen O’Sullivan. I was only 12 and that bothered me which leads me to suspect that I may have been badly in need of a psychiatric assessment even at that early age. On the other hand, I may have just been an early critic of the film industry at that time. No, I was right the first time, I needed the assessment.

One Sunday evening I stumbled across Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief on TV after watching Notting Hill for the 82nd time. I say stumbled because I rarely watch any movies about Mount Olympus ever since I saw Sir Laurence Olivier in a toga wandering around up there among the gods and goddesses passed out after a late evening orgy, which suggested to me that he was down to his last ha-penny and years behind in his alimony payments. This time his Hamlet was closer to ham.

Perhaps it is unfair for me to pick on that particular movie genre since my early exposure to Greek mythology was in Grade 10 and ever so enlightening. Achilles, Hector and Ajax were my heroes. They even named a town after one of them (Hector I think) Even today whenever I feel the urge to immerse myself in a few chapters of the Iliad or the Odyssey I feel I have to pick up my Latin text and begin to read. Thank Zeus, I have never yet felt that urge, but I am quite familiar with the duties of the various deities hanging around up there. Well, maybe not all of them. To be honest the only one I remember is Hermes because he is the one with wings on his hat and sandals. He is still alive and delivering flowers for FTD. Look up his picture on the Internet, he’s bare naked.

Why I bring all this up is Pierce Brosnan was in last night’s movie and he was, and maybe still is, a centaur. I never knew that; he must have kept his tail and bum well-hidden when he starred as James Bond. For the few out there unfamiliar with Greek and Roman mythological creatures, centaurs are half horse and half man. In this case, the front half is Pierce, the back probably one of Northern Dancer’s kids. Through the wonders of cinematography Hollywood has kept his bottom hidden from us for lo so many years.

But wouldn’t you think the Bond girls would have noticed? They almost always ended up in bed. Did they never question the fact there were no linen sheets, just straw? What about the two pairs of horseshoes beside the bed, wouldn’t they be some kind of clue? And of course the whinnying at the end should have been a dead giveaway, but no. They say love is blind (and possibly deaf) but it isn’t stupid. At this time I was going to discuss the fact E.P. Taylor used to rent out Northern Dancer for $10,000 for an evening of fun and frolic with the wealthy mares in the paddock, but at Pierce’s age I don’t think he better offer his services. He might get a few bucks but by the time he cleaned out the stall, refilled the manger and bagged the fertilizer it would hardly be worth it.

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