Stan Laurel's 128th Birthday Celebration May 22nd at The Mayflower Club
On the evening of Tuesday, May 22, 2018, we will again be the first Sons of the Desert Tent to celebrate Stan Laurel's birthday. June 16th will mark Stan's 128th birthday. Our films for the evening will be Another Fine Mess and Blotto. Plus, from a meeting that we recorded nearly seven years ago, we're screening our video of the remembrances of four of our members that met Stan Laurel in person at his home in Santa Monica. Also, I have good news that when I recently talked to Jim MacGeorge, he told me that he was feeling better and plans on joining us at our May meeting.
Our first film for the evening will be Another Fine Mess (1930). In this three reeler, vagrants Stan and Ollie duck into an unoccupied mansion to hide from the law. Before the Boys can leave the mansion safely, a dignified English couple, Lord Plumtree (Charles Gerrard) and Lady Plumtree (Thelma Todd) arrive to inquire about renting the furnished mansion. On the spot, to fool the Plumtrees and escape the law, Ollie decides he can pose as the owner of the mansion and Stan can pose as both the butler and maid. There is a lot of very funny dialog between the Plumtrees and the Boys in the film, but Stan playing two different characters, steals the film. When will the owner of the mansion, Colonel Buckshot (James Finlayson), find out about the deal?
At our June 14th meeting way back in 2011, I invited four of our members to share their thoughts of meeting Stan Laurel at his home in Santa Monica. Our members were Bill Burgess, Myrna Davis, Ralph Marks, and Stan Schulman. I have pleasant memories of what all four of the members said about Stan, and all of them told their stories well. Sadly, three of those members have passed, and the last surviving member, Myrna Davis told me recently that she and her family were soon moving out of California. Luckily, we have that meeting on video. All of those members had different stories about Stan, but each of the stories they told, in some way, that Stan Laurel was a kind and caring person. We'll screen that video at our May 22nd meeting.
Our last film for the evening will be Blotto (1930), another three reeler. When Stan tells his wife (Anita Garvin) that he and Ollie both have to go out for an "important" business meeting at night, Anita gets a little suspicious about it. When bachelor Ollie telephones Stan to find out if Stan's wife buys the story, Stan's wife listens in on the Boy's conversation. She quickly realizes that Stan and Ollie are really going out to a nightclub to drink and party (the film takes place during Prohibition). Stan's wife then decides to teach The Boys a lesson. She empties their bottle of booze that they plan to take to the nightclub and fills their bottle with cold tea, pepper, and mustard. When the Boys get to the nightclub, they really enjoy the entertainment and the "cold tea, pepper, and mustard" makes them think that they're drunk. Just how mad is Stan's wife at Stan and Ollie?
The Mayflower Club is located at 11110 Victory Boulevard in North Hollywood. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Our meeting starts at 7:15 p.m. "Fisher Franks" (100% beef hot dogs) with your choice of chips will be sold at The Mayflower Club Kitchen. Refreshments will be sold at The Mayflower Club Bar. Don't miss a lot of fun. There's no rain predicted. See you May 22nd.
Notes From Our March Meeting
For our second meeting of the year, we screened The Live Ghost, Going Bye-Bye!, and The Bohemian Girl. The theme of the meeting was films with strange endings, but as I'm writing this newsletter I realize that in all of the films the Boys actually ended up being seriously maimed for life!
As it happened at our January meeting, we again got a little rain, but our members still gave us a good a turnout. Thanks to Evans & Rogers for entertaining us again. Also thanks to Bob Duncan, J.T. Tropper, Dave Griem, and Jayne Barnhart for helping with the toasts and the song.
Chuck McCann passed away on April 8th 2018. He was 83 years old. In show business, Chuck did almost everything there was to do, and he did all of it well. He was a very talented man. To Sons of the Desert, he was one of the four people that founded our Sons of the Desert Club. Over the years, I've seen firsthand at many Sons' banquets and conventions that Chuck McCann was a sincere Laurel & Hardy fan. Rest in peace Chuck.
2018 Convention in Cincinnati This Summer
The 2018 International Sons of the Desert Convention will take place in Cincinnati, Ohio this July, and we are encouraging a few more of our tent members to join us. The Convention lasts three and a half days, from July 12th though July 15th. Activities range from a Laurel & Hardy trivia contest, a Pee-Wee game, Laurel & Hardy films (of course), local sight seeing and a costume banquet. Conventions have been held every two years since 1978, so if you have never attended, but have always wanted to go to a Sons Convention, now is your chance. June 20 is the last day you can register for the convention. Registration information is available on the Convention website at: www.laurelandhardy2018.com
L&H Festival at Old Town Music Hall
On the weekend of May 18th, 19th, and 20th, the old Town Music Hall will again present a Laurel & Hardy Film Festival. The Old Town Music Hall is located at 140 Richard Street, El Segundo (310) 322-2592). Their evening programs begin at 8:15 on Friday and Saturday. Their matinee programs begin at 2:30 on Saturday and Sunday. Admission to the theater is $10 per person or $8.00 for people 62 or older. Each program begins with a Wurlizer Theater Pipe Organ audience sing-long. For information about other film programs at the Old Town Music Hall, go to: www.oldtownmusichall.org/schedule.html