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what was the first old movie you ever seen


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Oh, I should have said that this chess thing happened about five years after we were married. He had gotten the chess item - I think it was called "Chess Challenger" - as a gift for Christmas and he was enjoying setting some of us up to be beaten by it. This was at a Christmas Eve gathering.


I'm an unorthodox player, I've never studied the game, I just know how the pieces move. The thing is that I don't guess my opponent's next ten moves, there's too many variables. I just anticipate the next two perhaps.


Maybe the machine wasn't programmed with anything other than traditionalists as opponents. It took maybe an hour, but I did beat it. The other guests made such a fuss that he came in fuming.


It took a while for my father-in-law and I to get along. I hadn't volunteered for military service, opposed the war in Nam and I rarely watched sports other than horse racing. I believe it was Robert Klein who once joked about his in-law who was such a sports buff that "he watched anything that was listed in the TV Guide sports section, even if it was Lithuanian Midget Mud Wrestling at 4am."


It wasn't until I got my first VCR in August 1980 that we found common ground. I guess he didn't think it macho enough to be an old movie fan, but suddenly he started talking about Astaire and Rogers films and Deanna Durbin movies and how he was going to have to get one of these VCRs so he could tape the old movies on TV.


It turned out that he had quite a collection in the upstairs bedroom of books on old films while downstairs the bookshelves had sports books, an encyclopedia and manuals on crafts such as home wiring and plumbing. You could say I helped him come out of the closet as a movie buff.

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