Monday, August 25, 2008

Debris from Seth's Attic

"The Turkey that Ate St. Louis" (1969)


A real Turkey that Seth and Molly found in Seth's Attic - an old 16mm movie made in Seth's salad days. It's hard to believe that this was the main course.

video

Seth comments:

One of the many doubtful activities of my youth was making films. I started doing this at age 11, and by the time I was a teenager, my buddy Jerry Rebold and I had already constructed a sound system that occasionally worked with our wind-up, 16mm camera.

In 1967, while in grad school, fellow student Bob O’Connell, Jerry Rebold and I made a half-hour film entitled “The Teenage Monster Blob from Outer Space, Which I Was.” This parody of 1950s sci-fi films starred six pounds of Play-Doh.

The film bombed. It was, as O’Connell called it, “a turkey.” This disgusting failure prompted us to change our cinematic strategy in two ways: (1) our next film was just going to be a trailer, rather than a complete film – that way we could save money and just put in the good parts, and (2) if we were making turkeys, why not make a REAL turkey?

Ergo, this short “preview” film, shot mostly at Caltech and at that school’s Owens Valley Radio Observatory. Observant viewers will note then-department chair Jesse Greenstein in the role of Walter Cronkite, and a few other astronomers too (including yours truly).

“The Turkey that Ate St. Louis” was entered in the Baltimore International Film Festival, and automatically inserted into the feature-film category, where it faced competition from major motion pictures from both America and Europe. Despite this uneven playing field, “The Turkey” lost.

“The Teenage Monster Blob” eventually became more popular. Too late.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Disco!

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Thursday, August 7, 2008

Uncivilized Behavior

Seth responds to UFO correspondence:

UFOs: Flying Emotions
Reader warning: I'm taking off the kid gloves. If I seem angry here — a state of emotional discombobulation that seldom seems to be my wont — it's because people whom I barely know, or in some cases haven't even heard of, insist on propelling me over the precipice. ...

Read the rest of Seth's latest article.