It's dark and windy on the North Shore of Long Island as I sit down to begin typing this Sunday afternoon, about 2 pm. (And now it's pretty windy at 10:30 am Monday!)
The weather reports have this cynic moving between states of nervous concern
and pompous dismissal (did I mention, it's windy!) of what should at least be the strongest storm to hit the area this year.
But if I've learned one thing over the years it's this: No matter how overblown any coming storm may be, the lights will probably find an excuse to go out!
When Hurricane Irene rolled through here last summer it was largely underwhelming in comparison to the preceding weather reports. But the power cut right at the start of Carole Lombard's day on TCM Summer Under the Stars on the way to, if memory serves, 5 days in the dark.
I expect more of the same. So first, most importantly, a note to my customers:
All paid orders paid through 9 am EST Monday morning, October 29, have shipped.
I'll update this info after I ship out the next batch of orders.
NOTE: Back in action as of November 3 ... more to come later!
But now, as I await the almost certain power outage, I don't feel very confident in saying when my next batch of packages may ship.
You may have a wait on your hands and for that, I apologize. I do assure you your packages will ship as soon as the lights come back on.
According to warnings from the power company that may be 7-10 days. Let's hope that estimate is absolute worst case scenario.
Works in Progress
It was to be a return to the Calendar style post I had been on a roll with a week or two ago, but as for now let's just say it will be a John Boles biography. I might be late on his birthday, but that's no big deal.
I've done too much research on Mr. Boles to turn back now!
Hopefully I can finish it up and post it to the site before Halloween when you'll be able to see Boles at 8 pm EST in Frankenstein (1931).
The question is, will I be able to watch by then?
In anticipation of the power outage, let's take a quick look at my TCM Now Playing Guide for the remainder of October and make some picks for you lucky folks outside of Sandy's reach.
On Monday the 29th programming is split between the delayed George Sanders birthday celebration (This was originally TCM's July 3rd schedule, preempted by a tribute to the late Ann Rutherford) and the final evening of Spencer Tracy as TCM's October Star of the Month.
TCM features Tracy's latter outings in four films from Stanley Kramer beginning at 8 pm EST with Inherit the Wind (1960), my favorite of the bunch.
On Tuesday the 30th the Spencer Tracy marathon continues through to 4:45 in the afternoon with Cass Timberlane (covered on the site HERE) proving a fine showcase of Lana Turner at 6:30 am and John Ford's tale of local politics, The Last Hurrah (1958) wrapping up Tracy-on-TCM month at 2:30.
While The Last Hurrah is a bit later than the films normally covered on this site, be on the lookout for several elder statesman in this one, including: Pat O'Brien, Basil Rathbone, Donald Crisp, James Gleason, Edward Brophy, John Carradine, Ricardo Cortez, Wallace Ford, Frank McHugh and, of course, Tracy himself.
Tuesday evening TCM finishes up their focus on disability in films with a distinct horror focus: Lon Chaney in The Unknown (1927) at 8 pm, followed by more Tod Browning with the infamous Freaks (1932) and then Boris Karloff stars in Bedlam (1946) at 10:30 pm.
Probably the best film showing all day though is The Snake Pit (1948) starring Olivia de Havilland at 2:30 am.
Then, as I mentioned in the general October preview, TCM airs the best Halloween Horror marathon that I have yet to see from them.
It begins at 6 am Wednesday the 31st with yet another one from Tod Browning, the reconstructed London After Midnight (1927). No, it's still lost, but they've put together as much as they could with available still shots and other resources making it a curiosity well worth the look if you've yet to see it.
Strong horror classics air all day long, but the best cluster comes between 8 pm and 12:30 am with a run of 4 Universal Horror classics: Frankenstein (1931); Son of Frankenstein (1931); The Wolf Man (1941); and The Mummy (1932).
And if you're a real night owl they slip in Island of Lost Souls (1933) from Paramount at 3:15 am before finishing things off with Claude Rains as The Invisible Man (1933) at 4:30.
That's not even TCM's entire Halloween schedule and I didn't just skip over the clunkers! It's a great day of horror programming.
Even though I anticipate the possibility of still being in the dark I'm going to cut the TCM Picks off right there.
With the new month comes a new Star of the Month, Constance Bennett, who I'll be working on a (likely delayed) preview post about during the storm. The general November TCM preview will likely be a couple of days late as well, but you never know. Maybe the lights hold up. I can only hope!
If you don't mind the likely shipping delay I touched upon above then I've got some interesting auctions ending for you this week. And hey, if I do lose power, it sure would be nice to log back in to find some payments received!
Highlights include a handful of early 1940s movie house programs that highlight a couple of Judy Garland films and a Sherlock Holmes title; a couple of bulk card lots and, for the first time, a lot of 19 old, issues of The Sporting News from 1947-1960. And yesterday I listed 10 separate sheets of the 1947 Hollywood Starstamps. Those end next Sunday evening.
All of my eBay Auctions can be found HERE.
I hope to be back blogging soon. Heck, maybe I'm being an alarmist and I'll be able to keep on posting new articles as planned. But it is awful windy out there.
Stay safe, talk soon,