by Yves L'attrappe
My next stop was Elliot's Gas Station and Video Mart. I wanted to
know if the Video store carried anything in the way of musicals and
Bob Fosse. Fumbling around through the old films, I came across copies
of Anne of Green Gables and Carnal Knowledge. These certainly
weren't what I had in mind for the evening. So I went up to the video
counter to ask about Fosse films. At the desk was a short guy of
about nineteen years who was watching one of Adam Sandler's great
flicks and shooting rubber bands at a nail on the wall.
"Are you busy?", I asked. He asked me what I needed in a newly
acquired manner somewhere between "I want to serve you" and "I've
already gotten a verbal warning from my boss about being rude to
customers". I asked him if he had All that Jazz. He gave me the look
you get when you call a dog by its name. I told him it was a musical.
He said that if they had it, it would be over in the musicals section,
over in the corner.
It was a dim and unearthly corner, seemingly untouched for years. A
layer of dust thicker than a Victorian Novel plot had accumulated on
the racks, and cobwebs garnished choice areas. The boxes had
changed to a faded green-grey color characteristic of neglected rental
videos and mountain lakes. On the top rack were copies of Hello Dolly,
Yentl, A Hard Day's Night, and La Bamba. I found Cabaret, and
resigned myself to the video. I stepped out of the void and decided to
peruse the comedies. I picked up Clue, and then noticed that there
was something underneath Airplane. Upon closer investigation, I
discovered a bootleg copy of the Liza With a 'Z' television special and
snatched it up. Now I am very fond of what Fosse's output, but I am
not fond of Liza Minelli, even in her good days. Be that as it may, I
was standing in the middle of a small town video store with two Liza
Minelli videos in my hands. To top that, I was actually treasuring these
as though they were rare sapphires or rubies -- first edition Batman
comic books or Marlene Dietrich's garter-- and not the pebbles they
were. So I paid for the three videos and walked to the cabin...
To be continued...
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