Sunday, July 27, 2008

Here's Lookin' At You, Kid...

Last Friday, Julie over at Happy Catholic posted about a fellow blogger's dislike of the movie "Rocky" (I'm from Philly, so "them's fightin' words" - heh). The comment section lead to the question, "What is the "best" film ever made?" That is a tough question, and is fraught with subjectivity. I have quite a few favorite films, but in the end - for me - it has to be "Casablanca".

So, on Saturday I went to the 3rd Annual Ventura Book Festival with a friend to check out some of the latest books that were to be had. I was determined to walk out of there without buying anything (yeah, right). As I turned down the final aisle of tables, what do I see before me but this book:

Tom Barnes was a high school teacher for many years, and would get his students to participate in a trivia game about the film "Casablanca". His intent was to turn it into a game, but when the licensing turned out to be too expensive he decided to turn the idea into a book. He and his wife had just gotten the first batch of books from the publisher two days earlier, and I was his first sale (yeah, I bought the book... had no choice... it's "Casablanca").

Tom was gracious enough to sign the book for me (heck, he and his wife were beaming).

And his wife took our picture for posterity.

Tom's the clean-shaven one who could pass for actor Paul Sorvino's twin; I'm the one with the face fuzz. So, now you all know what I look like. The book's available from Papyrus Publishing out of San Clemente, CA, and will soon also be available from Tom's website. I urge all you "film-o-philes" to go get a copy.

Here's a little parting "Casablanca" trivia for yah:
Bogart's signature line, "Here's looking at you, kid!" was originally in the script as "Here's good luck to you, kid," until he changed it. His new line never appears in the script.

Here's good luck to you, Tom! Or should I say, "Here's looking at you, Tom." And good luck with the book sales!

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