“And if today, all you did was hold yourself together, I’m proud of you.” ~ Unknown
I was talking to Gurney when Pam Meade popped up behind him. Hugs and selfies ensued. I’ve known Pam for so long that I don’t remember the first time I saw her. I’m sure I was just a child. Our families go back a long way as if we’re related. Oh wait, we are! We share common ancestors in Benjamin and Moonglow Hamilton. In fact, I think about half of Morgan County can trace their roots back to this couple. He was a Revolutionary War soldier from Virginia (1761-1849) and she was from Tennessee (1770-1846). As her name suggests, she was of Native descent, though she carried the Christian name Susannah Hurst. Moon, Kentucky was named after her after they settled there and they’re both buried near their home (I don’t think it’s standing anymore). They had 10 children; One became my line (David Hamilton), and another became Pam’s (I don’t remember which one, though). This is just one of the many connections Pam and I share. She has introduced me more people than I can count; people that I love to the core from now until the sun sets. She has propped up my art and dragged me along, getting me involved in the arts more times than I know. I hope someday I’m able to give back to her all the wonderful blessings she has given to me throughout life.
Sometimes, I feel totally out of the loop when it comes to modern-day pop culture. Thank goodness for friends like Deb Chenault to keep me from being perpetually dense. Before Deb and I went to the Hall of Fame induction the other night, she gave me a sweet little heart box of Russell Stover chocolates and a handmade Galentine’s Day card with a handmade brass bookmark. (she made the card and the bookmark, naturally) She said,”Happy Galentine’s Day,” and I just thought that was so clever of her. Deb is very clever and super thoughtful. Then she explained that it really was Galentine’s Day. Okay, so it wasn’t her clever idea, but she’s still clever as far as I’m concerned. By night’s end I see all the women Happy Galentine’s Daying all the other women across facebooklandia. I thought, “Oh, this is a really sweet way for gals to appreciate one another through Valentine’s Day.” Valentine’s Day rolls up a couple of hours later and I run into Crystal Heis at work. “Happy Galentine’s Day,” I say, to which she immediately and matter-of-factly replies, “That was yesterday. It’s always February 13th.” Seriously? Somehow feeling the sentiment of Galentine’s Day was just squashed like a ladybug underfoot. Crystal explained, as heard on NPR earlier that morning, that Galentine’s Day comes from an episode of Parks and Recreation. Amy Pohler’s character on the show set Feb 13 as a day for ladies to celebrate ladies; female friendships. Unbeknownst to me, obviously, the idea took off for real after that episode aired. Any excuse for a holiday I guess, and hey, I’m on board with this one. We gals can’t celebrate friendships enough. Thank you, Deb, for helping me navigate American Capitalism more splendidly and for being my Galentine. And here I thought I’d been watching too much TV.
Kentucky has birthed a whole herd of gifted writers, and many of them inducted into the Hall of Fame have, thus far, already crossed into the next etherial chapter. It’s a pretty big deal to have two of the Hall of Fame inductees still alive to participate. Gurney is used to my unusual selfie approach, but it was new for poor, unsuspecting Ed McClanahan. It didn’t matter. That Merry Prankster was all for it, sniffly cold and all. Both Ed and Gurney read hilarious work as part of their presentations. Ed’s known for his humor, but Gurney’s humor is usually weaved into a story like a silver strand. Not last night. He read a chapter from his upcoming book that had the whole crowd laughing until we cried. It was one of the most hilariously accurate character portrayals of a small town lying shyster I have ever heard. I cannot wait to get my hands on that book. I look forward to running into Ed again so we can practice the selfie a little more. What a great night we all had together, friends and strangers alike.
It’s my birthday weekend. The first order of business was The Last Jedi matinee with Stacy Yelton at the Kentucky Theater. Nothing will ever touch the original movie, but this was good, especially because of Carrie Fischer. Yes, it was her last film, but it’s good because she and Mark Hammill make for a good story. I couldn’t help but feel grateful when she appeared on screen. What a tumultuous life she lead, but when she had clarity, she had the wit of 1,000 people and more cajones than most men. What’s not to love about that? I always liked her, and I’m really glad she shared her talents with the world. We followed that with an early dinner at Honeywood at The Summit. I had not been to either before today. The Summit is an interesting concept for a shopping center, probably more suited to warm weather, honestly, and Honeywood had some very interesting foods. To top it off, I received a vinyl copy of Ryan Adams’ Prisoner. It doesn’t get much better than Ryan Adams in my book. Thank you, Stacy, for an awesome first day of birthday weekend!
The moment we Absolutely Fabulous fans have been waiting for had finally arrived. Opening night was a must for this AbFab fan. Stacy Yelton and Annie Bassoni posed with the marquee before the viewing. As you can see, they were in prime form for the big reveal. We were later joined by Joy Hayes, Lujza Hayes Nehrebeczky, and a gaggle of self-entertaining singers screeching My Old Kentucky Home along with the organist. It was my first time at the Kentucky with an organist between showings. To echo Annie’s impression; it was reminiscent of a baseball game, except we were inside. In any case, the movie had some side splitting bits. Eddy: “One woman called me a pariah.” Saffy: “Do you know what a pariah is?” Eddy: “Yea. It’s a fish.” <snort> Frankly, Joanna Lumley was brilliant. She just makes funny faces and I howl with laughter. Everybody and their brother is in the film, most of them playing themselves, which in itself is pretty funny. I have loved Eddy and Patsy since Michelle Shute turned me on to the show in the early 1990’s. I was pleased as punch to spend my Friday night with them all these years later.
“A comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there.” ~ Unknown
Do you ever come to certain street corners and notice there are signs everywhere? Little ones, big ones, lighted ones, dark ones; they just seem to be all around creating a mosaic of depth and color. Instruction overload. This corner is certainly no Times Square, but it has got plenty of signs all the same. I love the busy-ness on an otherwise quiet street.
“The privilege of a lifetime is to become who you truly are.” ~ Carl Jung
Meet Lexington’s oldest, and best, art film house: The Kentucky Theater. Opening in 1922, the cinema ran major releases for decades. Around 1979, they began showing art and foreign films. When I first moved to Lexington a few years later, one of the coolest things in town was The Kentucky Theater’s monthly calendars. There was something very artsy and big city about it. You’d see them plastered everywhere, from street poles to kitchen refrigerators. Then the theater suffered a fire sometime in the 1990’s, I think. The city rallied, and it was restored better than ever with one exception: they did away with the calendar. <insert sad trombone> Despite that, all these decades later and The Kentucky is still in operation. And it’s still one of my favorite places in Lexington.