I remember the first time I saw a James Bond movie. Or was it the Pink Panther? Something absurd anyway. It was years ago. In a theatre in a mall somewhere. When I was about 15 or maybe 16 years old. I was visiting in Toronto with my roommate from boarding school. Keith Forsyth. He was on the First Hockey team in spite of being much younger than the others who were in Upper Sixth Form. We were only in Fourth Form. I never saw much of Keith after that. At least not until four years later when I went to Glendon Hall for undergraduate studies. Somehow, I don’t have the foggiest, he and I reconnected. That was long before email and cell phones. Keith had left the school after his parents divorced when we were both still in Fourth Form, when his mother drove her Cadillac Eldorado to the car wash with me. They cleaned the car inside and out. Keith never liked fancy cars. I did. Keith became a “citizen”, a word he used. Not certain what he meant by it. He had a motor cycle. And smoked cigarettes. He collected me on the Wood Estate then took me for a ride on Park Lane Circle behind the college. Nobody wore helmets in those days. He stopped on Bayview Avenue next to a black Cadillac de Ville, driven by a woman with a beehive hairdo and heavy make-up. He stopped at the light immediately next to the Cadillac and stared at her behind the window. Then when the light changed he sped off. I clung to him for my life. I don’t think things went well for Keith. The last time I spoke with him was one evening on the telephone at college when I was drunk. It was the usual serenade wrought by that superfluous condition. We never spoke again.
I slept very late this morning. For once I didn’t care. We did simple errands, picking up dry cleaning and a few groceries. By the time I returned home from my routine drive to the city it had begun to snow. The first day of December. The gray sky was getting dark by two-thirty,
This evening I watched Amarcord by Federico Fellini. Now that’s a movie I remember! Though honestly I can’t say when I first saw it It had to have been in a theatre but I’d only be guessing it was the Toronto-Dominion Centre in downtown Toronto. It wasn’t released until 1974.
In an Italian seaside town, young Titta (Bruno Zanin) gets into trouble with his friends and watches various local eccentrics as they engage in often absurd behavior. Frequently clashing with his stern father (Armando Brancia) and defended by his doting mother (Pupella Maggio), Titta witnesses the actions of a wide range of characters, from his extended family to Fascist loyalists to sensual women, with certain moments shifting into fantastical scenarios.
Memories are mostly fiction, good or bad. They are just another form of artistry. But they help get us through the day. Life is not normally as fictitious. Yet lately I have to say we’re bordering on classic material. Everything is working out so well. Certainly I still have my complaints. But that’s just age. I expect it. What I don’t expect, but what is happening, is the removal of obstacles. Even the pants I ordered on-line this morning from Dillard’s.
“The secretive clan behind the Dillard’s department store chain has a reputation for avoiding reporters, refusing to hold earnings calls and dodging investor queries about their results. So low-profile and seemingly unambitious with respect to their peers, they are sometimes called ‘the Dullards.’ But there is nothing dull about the family fortune, which is suddenly being measured in billions – not millions – as shares in their 83-year-old department store business skyrocketed over 300% this year, making it one of the best-performing stocks of 2021.”
Back in 1987, when Canadian company, Campeau Corp. needed cash to defray expenses, William Dillard seized an opportunity to expand its reach.
The Canadian connection of Dillard’s is important to me. The first time I browsed the store was in Fort Lauderdale. Since then whatever I have bought has been a winner. And buying on-line is for me the only way to be assured of getting what I want; otherwise regular retail shopping is just hit and miss. The on-line experience generally overcomes the question of what’s in stock.