May/June 2004



As May brings us Mother's Day, with our own mother (Sheryl's) birthday immediately following, I felt compelled to offer up the following true story.

It was the end of September, 1955, and James Dean had just finished his part of the shooting for the film "Giant". His star was clearly on the rise, though as yet only "East of Eden" had been released. ("Rebel Without a Cause" was about to hit the screens, however.)

James Dean had many interests — chief among them music and horror films. His great passion at the time, however, was racing. He'd just done a public service commercial wherein he cautioned young drivers to "slow down — the life you save might be mine..."

So, his role completed, he left L.A. in his newly acquired Porsche to head up north for some race or another. As we all know, he never made it — crashing as he attempted to avoid a slow moving local car in Central California that just kinda came cruising out of nowhere. Too young, facing imminent Fame, looking forward to the success he'd been working for that was finally about to come his way, and now dead. Game over.

Meanwhile, back at the Studio, work continued on "Giant". Interestingly enough, the soon-to-be Oscar-nominated film editor for the project had a newly-married daughter who was at the time trying to become pregnant. Within a week or so of Dean's fatal mishap, she suddenly conceived.

That daughter, as you may have guessed, was none other than Book Again's own Sheryl.

And the conception would be me...