I’ve taken quite a few weeks off from writing as Lisa and I celebrated Advent and Christmas. Both Lisa and I also took this week off from our jobs to relax and do a few house projects and catch up on sleep. Especially important as I fend off a nasty cold, but I digress. As the New Year holiday looms on the horizon of the last weekend in 2011, I find myself sitting at the breakfast table enjoying a hot cup of Earl Grey and skimming through news articles that have nothing to do with politics, finances, or business – those stories are there, but they raise my blood pressure, so I’m ignoring them. I found myself reading the entertainment section as I’m also ignoring the local sports scene. I’m on “stay-cation”, so I opted for an innocuous journey into the land of “what’s happening now” in Hollywood.
One story leaped from the screen because it awakened old memories of my childhood. As a child, on Saturday mornings my sister and I would often sit together on the couch and watch Saturday morning cartoons and often we’d watch an old black and white movie. The movies were usually the 3 Stooges, Our Gang, Laurel and Hardy and Tarzan.
I recall my mom and dad telling us about the actors including Johnny Weismuller who appeared as Tarzan a dozen times. I wonder if there’s a biography on him? Check out the link to his Wiki page, he led a fascinating life. And Maureen O’Sullivan who played Jane – she’s the mother of Mia Farrow if that helps you – the only reason I know that is because Mia was married to Frank Sinatra at one point. Anyway, it was a reference to Tarzan that caused me to click on this People article on the death of Cheetah, Tarzan’s chimpanzee sidekick.
Of course there were several chimpanzees that were used to make the films, but Cheeta-Mike was one that lived on Johnny Weismuller’s estate in the early-sixties before finding a home at Suncoast Primate Sanctuary in Florida. They’ve set up a FaceBook photo album for him as they collect donations for the sanctuary. I assume they won’t mind if I use their photo of him as long as I provide proper acknowledgement and a link to their page. If they contact me to take it down, I will.
I can still recall the scenes where Tarzan is in trouble and somehow Cheetah is able to rally dozens of animals to come charging through the brush to rescue Tarzan so that Tarzan could rescue Jane. When he wasn’t doing that, he was providing some comic relief.
I’m still entertained by those old black and white movies with simple story lines, do you have a favorite that takes you back to your childhood? Comment and tell us which old movies are your fav’s as we’d love to hear!