Script Page 4
BUTTONS AND BOWS
When I die the most valuable thing I'll leave will be the back seat of my old car...you could sell it for abstract art. I got five years of color back there...course, it may smell like fish. Bob Slatzer went fishing with me one day up at Hoover Dam...he caught two, I caught two. I ate mine, but he left his in the back seat and I had this canvas back there. It wasn't the size I needed right then, so I just left it. Summertime. About a week later I went out there and you could smell that fish all the way to my porch. Took me another week to find the fish. Another month to get rid of the smell. The onIy thing that saved that car was the oil paint. Smell is worse, I think. One of those fish rotted right through the seat so I just cut a hole there, stuck a hunk of canvas over it and painted on an eyeball. No one ever sat there again.
When I was in Cincinnati, this was during the WPA days...I painted silk ties. Got five dollars for them. You'd be surprised at how many men liked a personal tie like that ... even at those prices back then.
One time a butcher I knew wanted me to paint a tie on his undershirt. He had a hole in it right here (points to chest) so I just painted a target around the hole. He gave me two pork chops.
Times got better...for me at least.
There was this lawyer...I liked him. You remember Robert Dow Hamilton. Came in here one night with a bag of White Castles and a bunch of milkshakes. Said he had a deal. What the hell, I go for deals.
He wanted me to paint his swimming pool. Yeah. Really. Paint his swimming pool...oh, I don't mean like a house painter. I mean he wanted me to do a picture on the walls of the pool. Hamilton had some of my stuff hanging inside. Knew he liked me. I liked him. But this time he wanted something I wasn't too sure about...really, I think I wanted to have something else to do...if Mary Ann had been with me when he came in, she'd had me right out there with a bucket of paint.
I couldn't find a way to say no. Hamilton was the kind of a guy who came in with his checkbook...open. Hell, I paint then. Went over there one day and looked at that pond...dingy concrete walls. I just started dumping paint around the bottom...finally I got around to putting arms and muscles on the thing...it must have been thirty feet high just where you dive in...one of his friends came around to look at it...he said it looks like the Neanderthal man...so while he was talking I just went ahead and made him right...it came out the Neanderthal man. Got most of it done the first day.
Hamilton didn't want me to stop...he was that kinda guy. I said Jesus Christ can't paint in the dark...hell, in about a half hour, he had flood lights set up out there and I was going strong. I stripped down to my waist and started in again... after awhile, stood back and looked it over...I liked it. Hamilton came out and looked it over...and he liked it.
Then he wanted me to paint some more...seems Mrs. Hamilton was out of town and he wanted to surprise her...He wanted me to paint the Shell Oil Company Trademark on the ceiling of his bedroom...he wanted the Smith Brothers cough drop thing in his big living room... and in the kitchen where he had a light fixture with four light bulbs fixed just so...he wanted me to paint the bottom side of Elsie the cow...so that when you turned on the light switch, those four tits would light up.
Hell, if she'd stayed away another couple of days, the whole place would a looked like the Dean and Barry test center.
THE GREEK SCIOTO
The other night we were talking about culture...I wrote Karl Jaeger a letter...of course it was a masterpiece. But since he was in Europe...I said (change inflection here like he does when he is dictating) We here in Columbus, Ohio, have a project going that will make our city surpass that of Florence or Paris or that of any city I've seen.
It's called the Scioto River Project.
I said I've talked a wealthy man here in Columbus, Ohio, into going over there and shipping home three of those large Egyptian statues out of the Nile Basin. We're gonna put them up on the west bank of the Scioto River.
A magnificent Marquetry walk goes in front of it...with Egyptian artifacts sitting here and there...On down I've had Red China give us a huge Buddha. It's a magnificent statue. You can have our students walk along there and be inspired by these great geniuses of Chiny...the one culture that carved marble equal to the Greeks.
Then when I was in the Vatican...I got another thought that stuck in my mind...they have 10,000 Greek statues. Copies of Greek statues. We support this august institution...so just talked the Pope into giving us twenty of these statues...
I been in about 40 countries...Karl Jaeger got me to most of
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