Weekly musings on the arts and current events.
Monday, May 11, 2009
"He was nice, and he was fun."
Last Saturday was the celebration of Dom DeLuise's life, and as I have a tangential connection, I attended. Although I didn't know him, I came away feeling touched by his spirit. Various people spoke, movingly or hilariously--in the case of his youngest son, it was punch lines delivered through sobs.
I jotted down a few things that were said and here they are:
• I asked Dom the Actor's Studio question--what do you hope they'll say to you when you arrive in heaven? He answered: "Great, you're just in time for lunch!"
• Mom always picks up pennies when she finds them on the sidewalk. She was having a great day in New York, finding seven, before I saw Dad surreptitiously reach into his pocket and drop number eight.
• (Carl Reiner) He never forgot to send me a birthday card, and always with a dollar in it.
• (Norman Lear, by letter) I walked into his living room and there was a flower pot with exactly one stem in it on the table, and Dom, all 250 pounds of him, called out:"I'm over here behind the plant!"
• (Mel Brooks) We had 55 days to shoot Blazing Saddles, but when we added Dom to the company for one scene, I went back to the studio and got two extra days. They didn't understand why, but I knew.
• I'd call my dad whenever I had something important in my life, some great problem or exciting news, and he'd listen and listen, and then he'd say: "I'm sorry, who is this calling?"
• He'd ask people he just met how they lost their virginity.
• He could prepare a dinner party for ten with an hour's notice, and cook for fifty...When my wedding preparations fell apart, he took over and planned the whole event in two days, saying as he always said: "It's fine. Whatever happens, happens. We'll deal with it."
• Everyone who came into contact with him left with great joy...and also a sandwich.