Monday, July 13, 2009

Long ago & far away, the second part

I am trying to find video clips which would give an idea of how it was to be there.
Perhaps this whole exercise is so ultra-personal that I'm overthinking things; these clips, at least, give some indication, however brief, of what a Lennon Hallowe'en sometimes felt like.
The first (above) is a minute or so of the organ 'playing' of my uncle Bill, who was the ringleader, robot maker, and head Dr. Insano Show writer. Good ol' Uncle Bill can be seen in the HGTV Extreme Hallowe'en video segment I posted back in June; he and I are Hallowe'en brethren. He inspired me, taught me, let me help him put together his robots (some of which can also be seen in the first clip here, when the camera pans to the right).
At any rate, he didn't (doesn't) actually play the organ, but he was out on that front balcony a dozen times a night miming to a handful of organ selections playing through a loudspeaker.

His traditional mask, top hat and tails can be seen, a decade and a half later, in that aforementioned HGTV segment.
The recordings used were played for so many years that they have all become Hallowe'en to me; I'm sure you each have Hallowe'en traditions, songs, and so on, which mean the same thing to you... it's impossible to express fully.

This clip is similar, but is just a very short bit to show how the crowd was all night long (and usually bigger than this... this is only one side of a corner lot!).

I am still endeavoring to get some Dr. Insano clips, and seeking permission to post them (nothing to do with legality or money, etc.; I just want to be certain my relatives don't mind being posted for all to see!).

On with the show...

This delightful fellow was one of Bill's best creations and inspired me to get into animatronics. I'd always loved puppetry and robots, etc., but seeing and operating this guy gave me the real sickness!
His head turned, he could move his arm up down to smoke his pipe (real smoke, too), his eyes blinked, and he spoke to the crowd, took questions, etc..
Some years later, I was able to begin adding my own touch to the robot display:

... and this eventually led to the animatronic figures you've seen in previous posts. This guy was a sort of apeman/Frankenstein's Monster, and his lip sneered while his jaw snapped, his head moved around from jolts to the electrodes around his temple and neck.

Speaking of adding my own touch... I think it's time to head into the more personal, rather than broadly familial, parts of my life-defining Hallowe'en existence.

Ponder that cumbersome phrase for a bit.

Spook ya later-

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