Sunday, December 23, 2012

It's A Wonderful Hallucination

Yesterday was a long one in our house with all the last minute cleaning and decorating and shopping so while I didn't have turkey in any form I did relax with a Yeungling once it was all over and sat down to watch It's A Wonderful Life.  I lovelovelove Jimmy Stewart movies whether they're award winners or not.  I just plain love him.  The college I attended, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, was in his hometown and to say he looms large there is an understatement.  I used to walk past the huge statue of Elwood Dowd that was in front of town hall (it's since been moved to the Jimmy Stewart Museum).  Some friends and I made a couple of trips there to watch It's A Wonderful Life on the big screen many Christmases ago and it's worth noting that this now beloved movie was at one time pretty heavily panned by critics who were disturbed by its darkness.  I managed to get the whole way to the "Attaboy, Clarence!" and I'm not even entirely certain I fell asleep but suddenly I was aware of a tall, good looking man in a well-cut three piece suit with a fedora and a trench coat slung over one arm standing in my living room.  I was really really hoping it wasn't Elwood. 

"Mr. Dowd?"  I asked nervously.

He smiled gently at me.

"No, he's just a part I played a couple of times.  Pretty well as I remember."

Then that means -- oh, wow.

"Um, so you're -- "

"You know who I am.  You want to talk to me."

I think the pea started mushing up all on it's own at this point.  I was lucky I remembered to be polite.  "Won't you sit down, sir?"

He sat on the other end of the couch and looked over the room.  He picked up my open laptop which was scrolling pictures that I've saved and used here on the blog and he seemed especially fascinated with the photos of Richard Armitage. 

"You're a fan of his, aren't you?"

I nodded.

"Kind of hard not to be I'd imagine.  Seems like a nice man, talented actor, handsome -- huh."


"You flinched when I said handsome.  Something wrong with that?"

"Not for me.  I don't think so, at least."

 "So what's the problem?"

I thought about it for a second, about all the stuff I've seen online recently about Armitage's having a stylist, the marketing push behind The Hobbit, the fan hand-wringing about his being in a blockbuster in the first place.  Suddenly I couldn't imagine anyone else I'd rather be having this conversation with.

"Mr. Stewart, can I ask you something?"  He waited patiently.  "Was there anything the studio made you do that made you really uncomfortable?"

He shrugged.  "Uncomfortable?  Like sitting under hot lights in a heavy sweater or like damaging to the delicate flower of my artistic soul?"

"The latter."

"How could they do that?  That was mine."

"But did they make you do things you didn't especially want to do?"

"Well sure.  You're an adult, don't you do things you don't especially want to do?"

"I don't think that's the same thing, though."

He laughed softly.  "Of course it is.  Who has a life that's totally comfortable?  And would you want it?"

I shook my head.  "There's fear of his being typecast."

"Is it his fear?"

"I don't know."

"Exactly.  You don't know.  You have no idea what's up his sleeve.  Boy's got some long arms, though.  Trust him, trust his agent.  They know what they're doing."

The dog chose that moment to sneeze and I reflexively turned my head.  I fully expected my guest to be gone when I turned back but he was still there.  "Anything else?" he asked.

"I don't think so."

"Good.  Now let's find a picture to watch.  Are you a Denzel Washington fan?  He's another one I like to keep my eye on."

So that's how I wound up watching The Preacher's Wife with the spirit of Jimmy Stewart.  There must be something about angelic visitations.  Or maybe there was something in my beer.  Whatever it was he was long gone when I woke up about 3AM.  It was definitely a wonderful hallucination.


  1. Excellent.

    I really like the point about doing things you don't especially like to do. (I grade papers.) I would prefer Richard Armitage to be unhappy as little as possible -- but we all do things we'd rather not as the cost of doing business. He knows what he has to do to get where he wants to get -- and hopefully he'll be successful in doing that.

    I also (as you know) substantially agree with the point about his agent.

    1. Seriously, I've never seen a group of people more doutbful about anything than this fandom is of RA's agent. Funny considering he's the professional, you know?

  2. I think Servetus said it all. Excellent dream. :D

  3. Yep...we all, as adults, are often compelled to do things we don't particularly like for a variety of reasons. I'm sure Richard Armitage is no different. He's not a child, he knows better than we do what he wants from his career and how to get it. Does he like some parts better than others? Who doesn't? (and Servetus, if you find a way to teach w/o having to grade papers, please share it would you :) )

    1. Exactly. I really can't get my brain around why it's thought that it should be different for him. Is he a delicate hot house flower, perhaps?

  4. I honestly believe that Richard is most happy when he is working. There might be parts that he might not be thrilled with but, for him, it is better to work than not work.

    And I love Elwood P. Dowd. Anyone who has a giant rabbit for a friend is alright with me.

  5. I lovelovelove Mr. Stewart, too! He's always been a favorite of mine. (Rear Window ... 'nuff said.) Nice dream, Jaz. :)

    My 2 cents worth ... Mr. A has been in this business a long time now. He knows what he wants to do. He has 'people' to help him make it so. And he's got some pretty influential friends. He knows, much better than 'we' (read: fandom) do, what it's going to take to get where he wants to go. Maybe 'we' should just trust him to do what's best for him and support him along the way.

    That's my plan, anyway. :)

    1. You people keep saying was a hallucination...I was awake for, I think :)

      And your 2 cents worth is the point, isn't it? He knows, they know and they have it under control. I'm a little confused about what I'm sensing is entitlement to know because, well, we're nosy.

  6. Very nice hallucination. I wish I could have one, would make the day go faster and probably open my eyes to quite a few topics.

    1. I'll send you some turkey and a Yeungling. Couldn't hurt.

    2. Mmm, Yeungling....I miss Yeungling!

  7. KathrynRuthD from Twitter had difficulty commenting so she emailed me and I'm passing along her thoughts below:

    Love this post!

    I generally take the view that if Mr Armitage is happy then so am I, even if what makes him happy is something I don't like. After all, if we all liked the same things the world would be a very boring place. I assume he is happy because I know of nothing that suggests otherwise. I also trust him to know what makes him happy, and if getting to that happy place involves doing things that make him uncomfortable, then I have to assume he's happy to put himself through that.

    Of course, it would make me very happy if he were to knock on my door tomorrow morning; however, I'm assuming if that were to happen it would simply be my turn for the hallucinations! ;)

    Happy Christmas!


  8. I adore Jimmy Stewart as well, so it is fun to read about your hallucination. I enjoy so many of his movies because his innate goodness shines through. It's a Wonderful Life is my favorite movie, and yes, it is dark. I don't know why people think it is all saccharin.

    And since Richard Armitage has recently said the James Stewart was one of the actors he admires, too, I find this post particularly interesting. Thanks.

    1. Welcome to the blog, Beverly. Someone uploaded the interview where RA mentions Stewart on FB after I published this and let's just say I found it more amusing than was probably necessary. :) Thanks for commenting!

  9. Chatting with James Steward?..You have the most wonderful dreams(hallucinations)in the world, Jazzbaby:)
    I spare you (due to my lame English :)) and limit myself to sighing about Denzel *swoon* Washington :)~~


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