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Nolan Pop Culture Review, 2003!
This week's
La Floridiana
    Oscar Picks
Matt's Rail
Mike's Rant

On the CF Homepage:
Florida Filmmaker Update

  Number 151  (Vol. 4, No. 7). This edition is for the week of February 10--16, 2003.
Photo by Phillip Smith
Terence Nuzum, Michael A. Smith, William Moriaty, Nolan B. Canova, Gustavo Perez, Richard Sousa, and Mike "Deadguy" Scott meet in the foyer of the Channelside Theater in downtown Tampa for this rare photo-op, Friday, February 7, 2003!

Phillip Smith
Phillip Smith, standing in front of the Live Oak in my front yard. Subtle symbolism there. Our initial meeting was a moment I'll never forget.
About a month ago, I received word that fellow PCR columnist Matt Drinnenberg was coming to Tampa from Massachusetts to attend the wedding of his nephew, Daniel Gonzalez. At the same time, I learned that stalwart Rant-er Mike Smith was also coming down from Kansas for the event, and not only that, but he'd be bringing his now-grown son Phillip, 18, who I'd never met. Holy cow..could that mean what I thought it did? Would it finally be possible for Mike and Matt and I to share the same roof together for the first time in 20 years? Would it be further possible to assemble as much of the "old gang" and the "new gang" together for a group shot? The possibilitites were making my head spin---but our main enemy was time. Everyone would only be in town for a few days.

Alerts went out far and wide. I wanted to get as many of us together as I could for the ultimate group shot. This was targeted primarily for Friday night which was our best time. Alas, Matt's rehearsal dinner ran long, and tho I was partly successful over several days time, the "ultimate group shot" escaped me this time. Oh well, we had a great time anyway and got plenty of pictures--"little group shots"--   whenever we could!

From left: Thursday, February 6, 2003, Nolan Canova, Mike Smith and Matt Drinnenberg co-exist under the same roof for the first time in 20 years. Specifically, the roof of the Pressbox Sports Emporium on S. Dale Mabry.
Thursday, Mike came over with his son Phillip and together we went to a favorite sports bar on S. Dale Mabry (The Pressbox), to hopefully meet up with Matt Drinnenberg. Matt did show and we got many pictures together (including one good one of him that will be inserted into his new "Rail" graphic!). This was a most animated meeting and especially meaningful in that our relationships go back well into the 70s. I got some good quality time with Phillip, who I got to know a little bit, and I am extremely impressed with this young man. He sat thru our "war stories" very gracefully!

I very much wanted Matt to join us for Friday's 10:00pm get-together at Channelside, because that's where he'd be meeting Terence Nuzum (who would be clocking out then) and Mike "Deadguy" Scott and other PCR staffers and old friends. (Also invited were Vinnie Blesi and John Hooper, but prior commitments unfortunately ruled them out. They were missed. Drew Reiber would be detained till Saturday.) One of the best of the Channelside pictures adorns the top of this page. Joining us were La Floridiana writer William Moriaty, local actor Gus Perez, and Andromeda Society former president, Richard Sousa. After we got everybody's picture, we walked down to Joffrey's, a nice little coffee shop nearby. Will and I related the serio-comic story of The Lost Tapes of Dr. Paul Bearer (a book I'll have to write someday), and Deadguy cracked everybody up with weird tales of our ex-singer, madman John Lewis (another book in there).

The gang at Borders
Saturday night, 2-8-03, at Borders Books and an alternate ultimate gang picture! From left, Phillip Smith, Terence Nuzum, Michael Smith, Patty G. Henderson ("Murder on the Woo Woo Express"), Matt Drinnenberg, Drew Reiber ("Wake Up and Smell The Comics/DVD Enthusiast"), and yours truly.

Saturday night found us at Borders Books on S. Dale Mabry just south of the interstate. This time Matt was in attendance, the wedding having been over hours before (and it went very well, I'm glad to say). Equally important was Drew Reiber's appearance, as he has never met Matt or Mike. Horror/mystery writer Patty G. Henderson was someone we knew from club activites 25 years ago, but again, no contact since, but here she was. If there was an alternate "ultimate" group shot, this was it. Matt's biggest regret was not being able to meet Mike "Deadguy" Scott with whom he had an animated email exchange some months before.

Sunday night, 2-9-03, William Moriaty, Mike & Phillip Smith, and myself met up at my local Hooters (on Gandy) for a last-minute send-off get-together. I finally got a new picture of Mike for The Rant (I have always liked his "bust" graphic, but he has always detested the picture it was based on...now you know....so it will change soon.) And with some final hugs, Mike and Phillip were off.

The photographs from Channelside Theater, Borders Books, and everywhere else we were are among the most important I've ever taken. I feel this was an opportunity we may not see again. But, who knows?

From Terence Nuzum...
It was truly an odd experience sitting in Joffrey's coffee shop last Friday with Will Moriaty, Deadguy, Mike Smith, and of course, Nolan. We were all together--well, most of us (Drew and Matt didn't make it). The whole crew sitting together in a coffee shop like mad beatnik artists of the '50s. Telling crazy stories and stuff. Then on Saturday, Matt, Drew, Patty, Nolan, and myself all met at Borders for more of the same. Truly an odd experience. Probably won't happen again anytime soon, but I will defintely take that memory with me.

Mike, it was nice once again meeting you, and for the first time, your son Phillip. Matt, it was truly a revelation--I figured you would be more uptight, but in fact, you were pretty cool and laid back. Will Moriaty, of course, with his story-telling proved why he is the best writer on the PCR and the one which all of us must live up to. As for my archenemy, Deadguy, it was a pleasure talking with you about those bad Jess "May He Burn In Hell" Franco zombie flicks since you and I are the only two on the PCR who would dare watch such garbage and live to tell the tale. And, of course, I think we should all thank Nolan for orchestrating the whole shebang.

I wish I could say that I was going somewhere with this but I'm not so I decided to go all Jack Kerouac on your ass and just type on the fly besides Nolan said write something for the reunion so here it is and if you don't like it then .....well you know the rest:

To Hell With You All,
Terence Nuzum

To all ex-residents of South Tampa from a while back: the old Shakey's Pizza/Sun Restaurant/S'getti's/Brewmasters building in the front of the old Woolco/Phar-Mor building on S. Dale Mabry, next to Britton Plaza, has been demolished. The rest of the property is sure to follow if it hasn't already.
   Scott van Sickle and I were riding by last Monday and we saw the pile of rubble where once stood one of our favorite places (See La Floridiana, PCR # 149 for reminiscinces of Shakey's---N). I wish I'd had a camera with me....then again, why?
   Developers are making way for a new Loew's Home Improvement Center. Nothing against Loew's, and I know that the property has been 95% abandoned for years, but it still hurts to see so many memories vanish so quickly---something we've had to live with here in South Tampa for some time.
   My brother's first full-time job was at that exact Woolco (also where he first met Steve Beasley). I bought and processed my first several reels of Super-8 film there. Squire's Lounge was on the side of the building where my old metal band Blade debuted for the first time professionally, Monday, December 5, 1983. Twin Bays Theaters, located in the small strip-mall in the same parking lot, was where Mike Smith held down one of his first jobs. Next to Twin Bays was some bar-and-grill who's name esapes me now, but where, for a short time, Matt Drinnenberg performed a solo act soon after Blade broke up---and I was there to see him.
   Gone----all gone. But not forgotten. Even though I can't get around much like I used to, and I should've brought a camera with me to hundreds of mini-events over the years (one of my life's biggest regrets), the memories from there will live on in me and in the hearts of those whose lives were touched by a few dozen acres of concrete and landscaping that once existed south of Britton Plaza in God's-own South Tampa.

La Floridiana
This week's issue
La Floridiana by William Moriaty
UPDATES: Floridana Fest Howdy !! Miami Mike Hiscano here........ Clyde Butcher Needs Your Help.We are in need of a sales person for our gallery..... .................Click here for more.

Movie Reviewmovie review
This Week:
Oscar picks!
by Mike Smith.
.................Click here for more.

"Daredevil" Review by Mike Smith ............Click here for more

Matt's Rail
This week's issue
Matt's Rail by Matt Drinnenberg
AN HONOR BEYOND ME.This past weekend, I had the distinct honor of being Best Man at the wedding of my nephew, Daniel, whom, along with my mother and father, I helped raise from infancy.........YOU CAN GO HOME AGAIN. The big bonus of the week came on my last night in town, where I finally....FINALLY.....got to experience....Mike, Nolan, and your's truly being in the same room together. .................Click here for more.

Mike's RantMike's Rant
This week's issue
Mike's Rant by Michael A. Smith
REUNION.........OSCAR TIME........THANKS....... SPOT THE LOONEY........
Despicable Evil Loser Total Assholes AIRLINES
.........................Click here for more.

Letters to the EditorWe welcome your feedback.

Hi Mike [Smith]!

Great review of, "Bowling for Columbine"!

For most of my life I've been a fence-sitter on the gun issue, having been raised in the backwoods of South Georgia until I was 12 and moving to Tampa then. My grandfather and my father taught me and my brothers camping, fishing and hunting. Tho that isn't a part of my lifestyle today, except for the camping and fishing parts......and we were taught how to handle rifles, from how to carry them to how to store them in the gun cabinet, which by the way was..unlocked. Shocking I know, and I would'nt recommend it, however no one was ever hurt by anything much more than briars and such or the ocassional fish hook. (by the way, these days I use a barbless steel hook, so that it doesn't do irrepairable damage to the fish while removing it and if swallowed will rust away in a matter of days) Anyway, I see the stats where other countries have illegalized guns and have extremely low levels of gun crime.

I've had this debate with Kiwis here in 'MiddleEarth', where no one, including law enforcement carries weapons of any kind and the although there are very rare instances of guns used in crimes.....the weapon of choice here seems to be Samurai swords, as there have been several cases in the last 3 years of people slashing and killing others. Just last week a man went on a rampage killing 1 and severely maiming 2 others, slicing one woman's arm off near the elbow and slicing the other woman's hand in half!

I am all for people's rights, like I imagine most of us are. Although there's no need for anyone to have an uzi, I usually defend their right to do so, albeit perhaps with the firing mechanism removed. They may well be collector's and if we banned everything you could kill anyone with, what then...would we cut our steaks with? Would we all become vegetarians? That seems to be an increasing option for many people over these last 3 decades.....even I was a vegetarian for about a half-year in the early 70s when I was on the construction crew for the library in downtown Tampa. Not a bad way to go but it didn't last.....as I've been spoiled by the hunter gatherers in the family tree before me. Having said all that, I believe there was good reason for the 2nd Amendment when our nation's Contitution was written and for a good many years hence.....right up until perhaps the 60s or 70s. Could it be that the 2nd Amendment has a shelf-life/expiration date?

Being the revolutionary type (at least in thought) that I am....and with my mistrust of the Federal government, I am beginning to see that it's time we abolish the amendment, at least for now. We can always add it back later...if necessary as we have other amendments. When we change anything on the constition, we must be very careful, however if we leave the primary document alone and only change amendments as needed, perhaps everything else will work out fine.

Sorry 'bout the long letter Mike, but I was so moved by your review!

Steve [Beasley]

To send an email to Letters to the Editor write to: Crazedfanboy1@aol.com.  Any emails sent to this address will be assumed intended for publication unless you specifically instruct me not to. I can and do respond privately, if that is your preference. Frequently, it's both ways.---Nolan

"Mike's Rant" is ©2003 by Michael A. Smith    "La Floridiana" is ©2003 by William Moriaty    "Matt's Rail" is ©2003 by Mathew Drinnenberg    "This week's movie review" column devoted to Oscar Picks is ©2003 by Michael A. Smith    This week's movie review of "Daredevil" is ©2003 by Michael A. Smith    Add'l thanks to Terence Nuzum for his thoughts on our reunion and to Steve Beasley for his input in "Letters"      All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2003 by Nolan B. Canova

Webpage design and all graphics herein are creations of  Nolan B. Canova ©2003; all rights reserved.