Such irony!!!
The crew should have refused Captain’s orders to go out with a hurricane over the horizon. I’m sure Cap’n Bligh would not have, he was too good of a sailor.

The tall ship had left Connecticut last week en route for St. Petersburg, Fla., heading South and keeping near to the coast. It’s reported that the owners were seeking a buyer somewhere down in the Gulf.

Continue Reading HMS Bounty Needed Another Mutiny!

Hey folks, this is quite exciting! Terry Taylor, the editor of a magazine which is put out twice a year for the Just William Society in the U.K., had been in touch with me a few weeks ago to ask if we could put together the story of my life. Daunting!

Not quite the whole story but a lot of it, starting with my being “discovered” as they used to say, on a bus in Chipperfield, and my beginnings as a child actor in wartime London with comedian Will Hay on BBC radio.

We performed the act for the King, Queen, and Princesses 4 days before the war ended. What followed was my being cast as “Just William”, and the downward spiral of my life as an actor to the present day. That’s 69 years! Here’s what he had to say:

Continue Reading Tooting My Horn as JUST WILLIAM

Showbusiness meets not just the law, but government too. And what a great story this is!

Feminism, Motherhood, Politics, Security, Family Values, Children, Patriotism, White House, Whore House, Beer, all coming together, if you know what I mean.  Ah…America!  Brings it all back for me, sixty-two years ago it is. Now I remember why I emigrated from gloomy old England. THIS is why I came to live here!

 

 

 

 

 

Denied to me now, I’m afraid;  Judge Gold caused me to lose my Piper Cherokee 6.

However, that didn’t stop me from encouraging my son Ben to learn to fly it, and later – to keep him out of trouble and stop being a waiter – to consider a career in aviation.  That he did, became an instructor, married one of his students, and now flies international for Delta with four stripes.  We don’t connect any more, but I hope he’s taking care of his crews and minding his Ps and Qs.

Continue Reading To Fly Again…

Celebrities are full of stories about their exploits, their famous friends, who they mix with, who they work with.  It’s often to do with the size of their billing, or their latest agent’s gaffes.   Then there are the less famous.  People like me, with stories more down to earth, but, I think, more interesting, unless you’re a fan follower.

This is by way of saying that I went to a play the other evening, at the East-West Theatre downtown, a play called “Wrinkles”.  Couldn’t believe what I saw, for there, playing the lead, was my old fellow worker at, of all places, First National City Bank, Park Avenue, N.Y.  5th floor. The year was 1963, the place the computer room, midnight to 8 am shift, Burroughs check sorting machine.  His name – Sab Shimono.  I remember him as a delicate, shy, self-effacing youngster,  wrestling with the machine just as I was.

I met him after the curtain came down, and we swapped a few stories in the car-park.  He has developed into a splendid actor, and reached an age of maturity reflected in his command of the stage.

I plan to see more of Sab.

 

 

My best Christmas present was from my fellow cadet shipmate of 57 years ago, I’ll just call him Nick, who contacted me from Vancouver as a result of reading the article I wrote in Wikipedia about the Silver Line.  Together, there were 4 of us, we tramped around the world very slowly, (to and from Hull, England)  on a creaky old Liberty type tub of a ship called the Silvertarn, and there she is.. That was during the Korean War, and we wove around the US/Chinese combatants with the Red Duster prominently displayed.  What he sent me for Christmas was a scan of the ship’s logbook. There I’m listed as I.J. Clark, and it seems I was well behaved (pity). Here’s a pdf of the logbook.

Silvertarn log

Those were the days when a youngster, just emerging from the Second World War in England, could venture out to see the world, much of it in disarray. The sense of wonder was overwhelming; the realization that there were other cultures and ethnically based political systems (we were the first ship to put into the new Communist Republic of China) to think about, and that the world’s makeup of humanity is and always will be essentially tribal.  Which has led me to view each country’s approach with a healthy cynicism.  There is no one answer, except live and let live (with appropriate controls of course, now that we have those unhealthy WMDs.)

My tennis days are over, thanks to Judge Arnold Gold. I often think of Jack Kramer, and miss his restrained BBC television commentary, before they banned him. He won Wimbledon in 1947, the first of two years I played there as a junior.

I built Topanga’s only Kramer tennis court, a company run by his sons, with the faux grass surface, and electric lights for nightime playing.

I wonder if my fellow DGA director member, one Michael Katleman who somehow acquired my property at a depressed price immediately after 9/11, is enjoying it? I think so.  Last time I looked over my old neighbor’s fence, he’d installed a basket ball hoop at the practice board end, and having family picnics on the "lawn". Strawberries and cream I hope. Of the net, no sign.

Sad news today.  I think he died of heart failure caused by stress. The stress he was put through by countless critics of his life style. He was forced to leave this country by media hounds baying at his heels.  Now these same people, are wringing their hands, hearts breaking with the love they profess to have for him.  I wrote about my thoughts on this during his trial. Read it here.

Back in 1967, I was working as a photographer, and took pictures of the little tyke, singing with his siblings doing their act at the Hollywood Palace. Petula Clark was hosting, and Lynn appeared in some sketch work.

 

July 4, 2007

My morbid self finds regular amusement in the obit columns of the London Daily Telegraph. Always enlightening, my favorites are learning of the exploits of newly deceased members of HM forces from the Second World War, and dead members of the theatrical profession.

George Melly I vaguely met from the side-lines during the filming of Smashing Time which he wrote, the first year of my brand new marriage to Lynn, and my return to living in London.

His life-style was hilarious and refreshing, as you can read about HERE.

July 17, 2006
I read today in a health report in the LA Times, that if 70 is in the rear-view mirror, which it is, I shouldn’t feel guilty if I’m skipping the gym, the daily workout on the tennis court, the few laps in the swimming pool, practice drives at my home-built driving range, or the jog in the park.
Well that’s a relief to know. Since Judge Gold took away my dream mortgage-free home nearly five years ago in order to pay his cronies in family court out of the escrow, keep a celebrity happy (Lynn Redgrave, my wife) to help grease his way to becoming a celebrity private judge specializing in celebrity divorces, I have been unable to do any of those things any more.
Uninvited, unwelcome and unbearable pictures spring to my mind. My lighted tennis court (built with fake Wimbledon grass by Jack Kramer’s son), my designer solar-heated swimming pool with a diving board, a jacuzzi, a slide and rocky waterfalls, and, yes, my English snooker table, where the exercise was admittedly less robust.
I played at Junior Wimbledon in 1947 and 1948, an admirer of the recently departed Ted Schroeder, who introduced the tee-shirt to center court, and Jaroslav Drobny, the left-handed googly server, whom I tried to emulate.
My billiards background was revived with the gift of my antique Burroughs and Watts 12 foot table from my wife. Back in my Just William touring days, when I’d practice alone at local YMCA’s, I got my birthday wish to speak to Joe Davis on the radio when I was interviewed by Ronnie Waldman, as the guest du jour on the BBC’s Monday Night at Eight, and to pose playing billiards with Sir Harry Lauder for the newspapers in Glasgow. I also played in the boys billiards championships at Leicester Square Hall, and my golfing life included rounds at Hoylake, only ten miles from Liverpool, while we performed at the Empire.
Now the Health section tells me I am doing just fine walking down the outside steps to my office, doing the dishes by hand, sweeping the leaves, washing the car, collecting the mail. Thus “Puttering my way to a Ripe Old Age”.
Nice to know. Thanks.
Meanwhile, I’m sure that the much younger Michael Katleman, fellow DGA member, who took my home away from me, is enjoying himself. He paid just one and a quarter million dollars, which is what the Family Court sold my home for just after 9/11, and kept some of my possessions left behind. He should be in great health, and will maintain the “smile of victory” on his face for a long long time.