Our dressed-to-the-nines behinds were in the seats with a few minutes to spare before the countdown so we took the opportunity to check our phones for precious Facebook and twitter moments. In a stunning 21st century social media turn here’s what we found: my mother-in-law had spotted us on “E” Entertainment TV in the way-back of the split red carpet situation, several layers deep, far beyond June Squibb and Jared Leto as he was proposing to Junie. Eagle-eyed and sharp as she is, Barbara managed to get off a thoroughly modern screenshot of this moment, send it to my husband who sent it off to S’s husband. Both husbands then tweeted the pic and who can say, really, how twitter managed to not crash right then. Said photo is now known as “The shot seen ‘round the house.” I share it with you, here (with thanks to my mother-in-law):
“Ladies and Gentlemen, please welcome your host, Ellen DeGeneres!” and the 86th live telecasting began. Then the show went as well as you saw it with little difference other than size based on distance and a scant few regrettable passages of time taken up by genuine breathless concern over who may or may not have had a stroke or be having one live on-camera and also, this guy:
You're probably wondering, so I’ll tell you; I did as told. I was a guest, after all. I did not applaud for my dead friends and acquaintances or those I knew only by reputation and contribution to the industry, those whose work I so admire who passed away this year. But I wanted to. I really had to sit on my fancied up hands. Let the Academy hide the fact of our applause from you by pulling the audio plug if they must, but the fact that we care, feel moved, sentimental, reverent or however we do about our colleagues often comes out in the form of spontaneous applause for the wonder of their work. It’s a last and maybe only chance for us to celebrate in a room together the lives of those lost to us. For the health of the community, AMPAS, let your people clap. There are already too many ruley rules. And Eileen Brennan, I will love, love, love you forever and I’m clapping now. And for you too, Joan Fontaine—and not just because you are the fave of Self Styled Siren’s Farran Smith Nehme, who for me is the only and last word on Kim Novak’s appearance: http://bit.ly/MOTARw
Among some of my friends there is snark and cynicism when it comes to OSCAR™. I’ll admit that for me, a true fan and sometime-member of the community—if not the Academy—the nominations, the show, can irk, over or underwhelm. I’ve always loved the movies and OSCAR™ is part of that love. Warm. Statuette.
My first Oscar will always be Oscar Levant who said “Strip away the phony tinsel of Hollywood and you will find the real tinsel underneath.” I’ve always liked tinsel. He’s one of the first movie stars I loved (in An American in Paris!).
I love the movies and the people who make them and OSCAR™ (and also Oscar) and I love The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for preserving the history of film. Getting to dress up and go to The OSCARs™ with my friend Sharon Mizota, one of the responsible crew of archivists and librarians at A.M.P.A.S Margaret Herrick Library who go to work every day with a sincere appreciation of all that is encompassed in the world of film—even caring for my small contributions—was a special honor, indeed. Shout out to the preservationists: “Alright, alright, alright!” That’s my report.