Friday, March 18, 2011

RAT PACK REVUE: "THE GREAT AMERICAN SAILING HERO" ~ By Absolutely*Kate of Harbinger*33


By ~ Absolutely*Kate

Chance, circumstance, rights of birth -- when winds scuttle tides to change, is the outcome all about being aboveboard? Or do you captain your yawl and yell the hell with it all? After all, wasn't that the devil-may-care attitude of the 60's sensation, the raucous Rat Pack revelers heightening a raised bar on drinking up a hep high life? Booze, blondes, swinging songs, swanky spotlights, and making all the right connections for all the right bookings in all the right places to be charismatically memorable to all the right audiences -- as if it appeared, effortless? 

Yes, I suppose I should accept the swagger of life in good grace, be captain of my destiny and hoist high my mains'l.

It hasn't always been such smooth sailing but the currents certainly are ripping our way now. The coordinants at the top of my charts point to an overpowering father of endless reaches of power, and a sainted older brother who could deal nothing less than aces at any game or table. Longitude aside, that duo dramatically cast strong shadows o'er my shoulder. I towed the family line or payed the price. 

Take my very first regatta -- granted, I was only twelve, but age wasn't a reckoning that undercut achievement with Pop. Like Vince Lombardi, winning was the only thing. But a first regatta as youngest crew? They should've let me at the lines with more to do. We came in fifth, after breaking our rudder grudgeon in the last downwind leg. Actually, with an early on four-point lead over the Australian contender, we could've won. We tried to keep her on a plane and use displacement when we realized we didn't have enough wind. We were at 8 knots, cranked her up to about an unlucky 13. Right after we got our spinnaker up to the top of the mast of The Camelot, hell if the halyard didn't come uncleated. That was it.
That's when I remembered Pop's face and heard what he told me with that look he had way back in the silent scream of his determined eyes. Eyes you could see kingpinning Hollywood in, rumrunning dangerous nights in, taking chances by hedging bets to go all in. Those kind of deep blue steely eyes. The kind that would naturally pre-fathom any surprise. Pop's eyes told me not only not to come home to dinner where Mother and all the others would be waiting, if I didn't have a shiny trophy to add to the oak case in the library facing the bay, but not to show my face if I wasn't top mast all the time. I played enough rugged family football to always hear Lombardi's voice in my father's eyes. 
By my St. Christopher's medal, I swear that race was the last I ever lost. True, I didn't go home that night. I stayed with Patrick Shawn whose mother called mine, but I couldn't face Pop when a win was on the line and I wasn't part of it. Indeed, that was the heart of it. From then on, I studied the courageous and swallowed the secrets of those profiles, the better to know how to effortlessly push the elements and, more significantly, when to throttle back. Frank does it that way when he makes a song his own story and gives it back with a catch to his breathing in all the right places so the society ladies in the first row and the bobby-soxers in the thirty-third row and gals all the way back are jolted into feeling the lyrics were crooning love only to them. Effortlessly.

Yes, you could say I jolted. I jolted achievement, I jolted Success. World-class yachtsman, sportsman, bon vivant and thinker of forward ideas  of which I could ask countries to make all the difference.
Staying the course though, as tactician and helmsman, bringing home conquest Cups and the bragging rights to go with them is what I did. I did it with a top mast gentleman's grace. Effortlessly. I was on the starboard tack Pop wanted me on. I was who he could count on when our above average Joe wasn't around. But a good ship needs balance. There were times I took shore leave and turned off the limelight for the nightlife. Hell, I cut loose like any sailor new in town would, like any guy should. That's why I took up with cutting the casino rug and letting off some wind in my sails with the Rat Pack. We had a boat-load of fun and kept our profiles showing our better sides. You never knew who was looking, you know? They made me an honorary member. I had a room at the Compound in the Springs, right next to Frank's. We all had nicknames. I was Chicky Baby and could do no wrong. Come to think of it, my brother-in-law Peter was often along. In retrospect, Pop must've been the quiet tiller hand more times than I thought I'd charted my own courses. He's always wanted the epic regatta.

Joseph, Mary and Jesus, now the powers that be say I have to bring another Cup home. Pop murmured now that I've been  friendly running with the Rat Pack, -- since Frank's tight with big Sam, he's the one to get Giancana to make just a coupla calls to West Virginia to get those Labor boys on deck with us and then . . . well, then I'll be the great American sailing hero.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

I'll do it my way. I'll ask Frank up to Hyannis this weekend. He can angle that goofy boating cap he sports trying to out bing Bing and I'll urge out his landlubber pipes; maybe Pop wants him to sing for his supper. 

I know Pop likes Dean, but what if he puts up a fuss about having Sammy at the 'house? That's not right. Will he get my little brother Bobby to handle that?  Chance . . . circumstance . . . rights of birth.

(c) 2011 ~ Author Absolutely*Kate
Rat Pack Revue ~ AT THE BIJOU

Absolutely*Kate musters moxie when writing to the attunement she hears, (usually in the key of Dean or Frank, Sammy, Satchmo or Ms Billie). It is with great rollicking joy that she presents the swing and swagger of the authors who have joined her in the creation of the RAT PACK REVUE AT THE BIJOU.  

This entertaining (and thought-evoking) show features dash, splash and the honour of circumstance to the legend of pulp prolifics, in crime, in westerns and currently in a resounding six pack of Rat Pack Mysteries. (Lucky #7's mentally on its way.) Please give applause and ample book-buying zeal from your red velvet reading seats to Mr Robert J Randisi, appearing again on our stage come this Sunday's matinee . . . as well as working AT THE BIJOU Lounge before he plays the Main Room.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~




Sunday Matinees too.

Be there or be square.


Always swell to see you here.

~ Absolutely*Kate,
and our swanky renown


Sinatra: "If power doesn't mean that you have the opportunity to work with the people that you love, then you haven't really got any."

Opening Night: "RAT PACK REVUE TO YOU"

RAT PACK REVUE: "How Did All These People Get Into My Room?"  By Robert J Randisi,
working the lounge before he hits the main room

RAT PACK REVUE: "Ain't That A Kick In The Head"  By Robert J Randisi, paying homage to Ocean's 11, the original . . . for all the right reasons

RAT PACK REVUE:  "Who's Got The Action" By Kevin Michaels, knowin' more than the night club scene  

RAT PACK REVUE:  "STAR" By Julie Morgan,  hitchin' TinselTown to a dick's star

RAT PACK REVUE:  "OH SOUL O'MIO" By Absolutely*Kate,  mirroring where scars shine bright

RAT PACK REVUE:  "Divorce Your Loved One With Dignity" By Anthony Venutolo,  oozing atmosphere, over the border
RAT PACK REVUE:  "Everybody Loves Somebody Sometime" By Paul D Brazill, giving Dino a whole new swan song






~ ~ ~ ~

You're nobody til somebody love you,
and we love you AT THE BIJOU.

~ ~ ~ ~


Harry said...

Pretty slick sailing K*G. Modest too, not divulging it was a young and future Captain of Habinger*33 handed young John his last defeat.The Rat Pack Revue wouldn't be complete without a nod to JFK.

Anonymous said...

Kate, I absolutely love, love, love the lyricism in your voice. Every thing you write has that celebratory clink to it, like ringing champagne glasses together.

Love this line: "...that look he had way back in the silent scream of his determined eyes." among others.

Thank you for the fabulous entertainment!

Author said...

Beautifully done, Kate. You caught a fair wind and sailed her straight past the finish line - first, of course.

Kevin Michaels said...

Well done - love the subtle tie in to the Rat Pack, but more importantly, I love the voice and fluidity of your words. It flows smoothly and as noted, has almost a lyrical quality to it that works so well here. Nice, deep descriptive feels effortless and reads very well.
Excellent story-

Matthew S. Magda said...

There are several passages in this piece that I love: ..."wind scuttles tides"..."drinking up a hep high life"..."always hear Lombardi's voice in my father's eyes"..."I jolted achievement. I jolted success." More than these parts, I love how you subtly and eloquently reveal in this sea/family tale that it was only natural--indeed, a law of nature like a powerful, wind-swept rolling sea--that Jack Kennedy, the son of the swaggering "must win," "Hollywood lady star carousing" Joe, would find like spirits in that swaggering set of men-boys called the Rat Pack. Brilliantly done kate.

Sean Patrick Reardon said...

Wow, that was good and you captured the legend perfectly. Up my way I rememeber as a kid that every Irish Catholic houehold worth thier Sunday Mass had two pictures prominently diplayed above the mantle or in the parlor..Jesus and JFK. Now that Uncle Teddy is gone, you don't here much about them anymore. JFK Jr was one cool cat in his own right and I was very bummed out when he died. Great job A*K !

Unknown said...

"He can angle that goofy boating cap he sports trying to out bing Bing and I'll urge out his landlubber pipes; maybe Pop wants him to sing for his supper."

Hilarious... Great write, Kate...

Kate Pilarcik ~ absolutely said...

Feelin' fair winds and blue skies, nuttin' but blue skies, from you mighty fine folks' appreciation of another Rat Pack offering to the show that must go on.

Thank*you Harry, Deanna, Julie, Kevin, Matt, Sean Patrick and Anthony ~

You're the billow in my sails,
the *clink* to my bubbly,
the exhilaration to my races,
the attunement to good lyricals,
the power to windsweptivity,
the blessing genuflecting legends,
and always the right angles
that give the bright grins.

~ You're the stuff packs of writers e'er inspire within.

~ Absolutely*Kate

Kate Pilarcik ~ absolutely said...

What? Sean Patrick Reardon, great criminal clues-induced writer didn't catch that the kid layed low, and stashed away a night with his Irish Catholic pal -- Patrick Shawn to avoid the wrath going Pop?

Sean Patrick Reardon said...

A*K- LOL. Of course I noticed, as soon as I read it, and it was way cool!

RJR said...

Very nice job, Kate. Lyrical. You accomplished quite a bit in a short span of time and space.


KjM said...

Smooth as ever, Ms. *Kate. Your descriptive and playful language is a joy to read.

Not being from around these parts, I had to wait to read the comments before I got the Kennedy tie-in.

That didn't lose anything from the story for me - but it was a nice..."kick in the head" as Dean might say... when that got filled in for me.

"...(usually in the key of Dean or Frank, Sammy, Satchmo or Ms Billie)..." - but of course you'd love the Blue Lady.