Thursday, November 08, 2012

what's up, doc?

I was about to assure you this blog is not turning into a draft of my autobiography.

I could.  But it would be a lie.

Sifting through six decades worth of possessions cannot avoid at least a few nostalgic moments.  Even those that are rankly sentimental.

My brother, Darrel, was here last weekend.  He stayed the night on Sunday after spending the weekend with my niece at Oregon State's father-daughter weekend.  We do have some traditions.

Rather than eat at the house, we dined at one of our favorite burger haunts.  At  our respective ages, conversation often turns to death.  This time it was the death of the mother of his high school girl friend (who is also a frequent reader and commenter).

Their family is filled with the type of overachievers that have made America exceptional.  Darrel listed off what each of them is doing.  He reminded me that one son (Phil) headed to Hollywood and made it big as a voice actor -- now as the voice of Jiminy Cricket.  Mel Blanc was a mentor.

If you are of a certain age, the name "Mel Blanc" will undoubtedly conjure up the voices of Warner Brother cartoons -- because that is where he became famous.  The Man of a Thousand Voices.  Most famously, the voice of Bugs Bunny.

Darrel and I have a special memory of Mel Blanc.  In the late 50s, the Oak Grove Fred Meyer had its grand opening.  And one of the celebrities the company used to draw families to the new store was Mel Blanc.

But not in the front portion of the store.  For some reason, Mel, in his ridiculous Bugs Bunny get-up, was relegated to the loading dock in the back of the store.

We kids did not care.  He may as well have been Roy Rogers in a rodeo arena.

I thought that was the end of this little stroll down nostalgia lane.  Until yesterday.  Stuck in amongst some of my photographs and love letters was a faded blue sheet of paper.  With a familiar face.  A familiar name.  And an autograph nearly fifty years old.

One more piece of evidence that the 8 year old boy who moved from Powers to Milwaukie is still very much with us.


barbara eckrote said...

IF you ever watch Antique Roadshow you know that that piece of paper is worth some money!

Steve Cotton said...

Undoubtedly true. But there will be no time for retailing. 

Jose RPHS said...

Steve, report of a murder of a Canadian in the Barra???

Shannon Casey said...

What a fantastic piece of memorabilia. It probably is worth money, but it would be very hard to give up something like that!

Steve Cotton said...

Unfortunately, the house is filed with lots of similar memories.  But there is little I can keep and still feel free to move at will in Mexico.

Alan_Gardner said...

My wife Trudi's dad grew up with Mel, and he was Uncle Mel to her, and she has some cells and other momentoes from him. 

While she never could do a voice she's a humor writer.  You might enjoy her blog at  She started in when our son was the lead in UCLA's senior play and informed us he would be nude for 3/4 of the play.  So the first article was 'where's a mother to look'.

Alan Gardner

Steve Cotton said...

Welcome to the commenter page.

I took a look at your wife's blog.  Nice pieces.  Nothing increases hits like the word "nude" in posts.