“I always knew that you were Chris’s mentor”
Yesterday, my brother-in-law and I chatted briefly on facebook. I went sopping, and when I got back, Larry Sidle had added more information – that I did not prompt. I told him I had old photos of him, and sent them in a blog. Larry gives me what members of my family, and Marilyn Reed – did not! He gives me credit for Christine becoming an artist. In our conversation he said;
“Chris was a late bloomer.”
Alas, the truth arrives! Larry and I are seventy, and in poor health. In the last month I believed I was going to die. Larry said he had a close call a few days ago. We are both estranged from our family. Our daughters do not talk to us. Larry described the painting I did, and gave to them. It was a oil-wash that I painted in their presence. Later, Christine did oil-washes and asked me for advice on how to keep the paint from drying too fast.
“Greg these are precious to me, you
have brought back so many memories an feelings that seemed lost .. but for in my heart… thank you so much… I always knew that you were Chris’s mentor … weather ya consciously tried to be or not. I remember her watching your every brush stroke with the fascination of a child watching a magic trick.. the painting of yours with the sky raining down burning rocks .. or watever .. comes to mind!.. I’ve had a cupla strokes… an lost my ability to speak for a while… and being able to communicate this way is a blessing.
Please forgive me if I am not up to date on the status of things in your life… I pretty much am a recluse… and try to speak with my music.. as alwaze… it’s jus been overcomin one obstacle after the next… and now I’m only interest in leaving sumthin to show that I was here… and alive… I was arranging an recording stuff… but the peeple who liked the noise I make … convinced me to jus do ‘raw’ stuff… I play a number of things… all pretty awful… but it feels good to do… an it keeps me from doin sumthin worthwhile.
Which was tiring at sum point .
I played the lil Gibson an tried to spit out sumpin jus now… I haven’t edited it.. or I usually jus delete them… so here’s what I do.., it’s jus acoustic an”
Larry told me abut the classic house he lived in, and how he could see the ocean one a clear day. I googled his address. I gasped when I saw the name “Japan Town” and “Sawtelle”. Christine gave me credit for her success. Larry had not read this blog. He described my painting as being a shower of meteors and stars.
“You showed me what constituted good and bad art. You let me look over your shoulder when you painted.”
Christine asked if I would manage her in 1972. Her success was overnight. I was a space-case, and told her I know nothing about business and money. She asked our father, and he said he knew nothing about art. Two years later, my beautiful sister offered to teach me her style so I could know financial security.
I told Larry he was a Hero in my story. I told him about Rosemary making porno flicks for the Mafia, and how were were abandoned. No one new how to handle the four Presco children after our mother got arrested. The DA’s daughter was our guardian. He had overlooked the operatoins of the Mafia in the Bay Area. The Oakland Tribune said a judge was going to take us and put us in homes. We were in our late teens. No one would adopt us. Would we be put in Youth Authority – jail – while Big Bones Remmer goes free?
Larry and Christine were in love. We were a closed family system. Christine did not want to be a virgin, and these lovers went to a motel on Sepulveda and Santa Monica. My sister got pregnant, that first time, in the Sawtelle. Consider the West End Hotel I tried to book a room two years ago. So did Marilyn who was beat-up by Rosemary when she confronted the hold my mother had on me. Marilyn and I were looking for an opportunity to lose our virginity. This is what you do as a teenager.
Rosemary did not approve of my future brother-in-law, and tried to strangle Larry with the tie he was wearing. Larry told me he was helping Christine with her sexual frigidity so she could be a sensual and beautiful woman. He was a Mentor to her, a world famous artist known for her images of sensual and beautiful women. Everything was set in stone, the true Genesis of Rosamond’s success, when she fell in love, and when she looked over the shoulder of her beautiful brother.
Rosemary came on to me, and I suspect my brother by what she said in a infamous phone call. Aunt Lillian said my mother was oversexed. These Rosamond sister’s dated Errol Flynn. The movie ‘East of Eden’ was required watching in our house. Hearing your mother admit she is a prostitute for the Bad Guys, is Freud material. Steinbeck wrote fiction. The head of the newly built Camarillo wanted Wild Rosemary to be his first celebrity patient, being she had a Lima Bean fortune in her sights, and boys were being made men.
I am going to be there for Larry. I will call him on Christmas, and other Holidays. He did his best. He deserves recognition. His daughter was the adult Heir when Christine died. It is my hope both our daughters start talking to us, for we have just a little more time.
The house that Larry lives in looks like the house on Glendon. I told Marilyn I was considering moving to the Sawtelle and help make it a historic Bohemian enclave. All my friends are dead. Larry grieves for the same reason. I is like he was led to this house twenty years ago that he first rented to store his belongings. The Boy Next Door is like the Gate Keeper, waiting for our return. Marilyn lived on Colby and Iowa. Marilyn Monroe lived four blocks away on Nebraska. Larry was very fond of my family, that he will forever be a member of.
Jon Gregory Presco
Back in December, my childhood friend, Marilyn Reed agreed to make a video for a chapter I was writing for my autobiography ‘Capturing Beauty’. Marilyn and I met when we were fifteen and sixteen. She lived in the Sawtelle neighborhood which was going to be the title of a chapter. After our profound talk, and with more revelations, I told Marilyn ‘The Sawtelle’ might be a book. After the performance by the Inspirational Sounds Gospel Choir, Marilyn’s sister, Shana suggested she and Marilyn co-author a book, and tell their story. I consented to this, then rescinded my blessing, because I feel out story is more important. A week later Marilyn told me she had no time to write her story. I reminded her of the videos I made of her.
The Sawtelle will look at our mothers and their desperate poverty and struggle to raise their children. The story of Marie and Rosemary, is an amazing one. They never met. They came together in our bond. Our creative bond was an inspiration to my sister, who took up art when she was twenty-four and became world famous. Christine signed her beautiful images of women with her middle name, my mother’s maiden name ‘Rosamond’.
The videos of our interview are copyrighted, as are the videos I took at the Hult Center. This performance reminded me of my vision for my musical ‘My Big Beautiful Blue Bicycle’ that I posted on May 1, 2014. There is talk about going to New York and seeing ‘Fela’ a musical based on a story co-authored by Shana.
President: Royal Rosamond Press Co.