Friday, October 10, 2008

Stardom et al

Burbank is a sleepy little town, nestled into the crook of LA's sprawling body. If, of course, any part of LA could be considered to be a sleepy little town.

Burbank was always the address given on those old TV game shows when I was growing up: " . . .send to: 123 xyz street, Burbank, CA 12345"

Burbank rustles up imagery of Ed McMahon and Estelle Getty and Ronald Reagan -not necessarily in that order - but a refuge, just the same, for a retirement community that houses the elderly once-upon-a-time burgeoning stars of televisions' heyday. A little city that still allows horses to be boarded in alcoves hidden by tall hedges and ridden on the paved streets, as if out on the range for a weekend trail ride.

Burbank, I have discovered, isn't too far off from the pictures I painted in my mind. A quaint, friendly place nestled among, and even giving refuge to, some of the entertainment industries heaviest hitters.

Burbank speaks of old school, as did the Taco Bell I wandered into last night, as we awaited class to finish for the olders. The aged frame of the building betrayed just how long this establishment had been in business. As I took a seat against the far wall with Keller, my eyes travelled to the wooden beams above us, littered with crooked and dusty hanging black frames, filled with pictures of child-star icons from {cough} my generation of television. Every one of the twenty or so photographs were immortalized in black and white, giving away the once-upon-a-time-owners' intent interrupted to cover the wall legend style.

Soon, a passel of folk arrived for an evening meal, and the tiny little joint began to hustle and bustle. To my amazed amusement, two aged, retired gentlemen walked up to us, reaffirming my stereotype of Burbank, and began chatting comfortably, as though we were regulars in a diner for coffee each morning. The Barney Fife-slender policeman that walked up behind them also gave us a nod. His presence further confirmed my rose-colored perception of sleepy little town.

Another police officer. A twenty-something cutie. A flirtatious couple. An older couple. A kid, with his buddy outside guarding the bikes . . .a revolving door of humanity, each one entering our little corner and greeting my son: engaging him; making exclamation of his size/ability/cuteness/you-name-the-characteristic-that-catches-your-fancy.

I sat, as Mary of old, pondering these things in my heart . . .when all of a sudden, a crowning moment!

"Ma'am? May I take a picture of your baby?" the Hispanic cashier, the same one who had taken my order about fifteen minutes earlier, was at our side, paparazzi fashion, eagerly anticipating my affirmative response. I did not disappoint him, and even helped Keller pose a bit.

Exiting the building, I shook my head. Keller had become an instant sensation in Hollywood - no - BURBANK, CA!

The only component missing was his face in a frame on the wall . . .

1 comment:

~ Denise ~ said...

and, the signed copy of said-such framed, handsome face with some kind sentiment of "congrats, owner. much love, Keller".

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