Thursday, July 23, 1998

Remembering Lloyd Bridges

On March 10, 1998, Lloyd Bridges died. I remembered him when I was a child, How he held me on his knee, threw me into the air until I screamed with delight, and he gave me a crystal star necklace. He said he had a daughter just like me. Lindy. He was like a father to me that summer in Sacramento .where my mother designed costumes for a live TV program, a weekly series, Music Circus.

I remember Lloyd on stage as Sky Masterson, sitting at the table pounding his fists, in Guys and Dolls. And there was also a ballet dream sequence. The set was draped in purple tulle netting. The magic of theater had me hooked. I later dressed up in those scraps of purple tulle pretending I was a ballerina. Twirling in the basement. 

The crystal star, it slipped behind the backseat of our neighbor Agnes's Pontiac. I remember frantically searching for it, heartbroken. But she was too drunk to care, or to help me find it. Can't stand the odor of Bourbon to this day.

Now I hang crystals in my windows to catch and spin light, just like that crystal star Lloyd gave me. I watched that man on TV religiously every week. Sea Hunt would eventually lead me to the sea. I can't get enough of that underwater realm.  Magic.

It was like swimming inside a crystal, mirrored endless light. I gazed at it that summer in Sacramento, dangled it in the motel pool, playing my own game of Sea Hunt. But Jeff and Beau wouldn't play with me. They knew their father wasn't Captain Mike.

I have a vague recollection of them, two blonde boys in the deep end of the pool. But I was too shy, and only six. But I adored Lloyd. I was too young to care about things like autographs or photos. 

As I watch the biography of Lloyd on TV, a floodgate of memory opens up. And yes, I was really there. I remember fragments of my childhood and maybe someday I'll write about it.


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