Article from the 3/3/2017 Catalina Islander

Since becoming "Catalina's Official Greeter", March 10, 2014, when the Chamber Of Commerce assigned me to great the cruise ships and cross channel carriers, I have answered 63.872 questions.
VOTE: There is going to be a "Consolidated Municipal and Special Elections" for Los Angeles County, including Catalina, Tuesday, March 7. GET OUT AND VOTE!
THE TONGUE HAS NO BONE, BUT...  Whoever wrote "Sticks and stones can break my bones, but words can never hurt me" DEFINITELY WAS NOT FROM MY PLANET!  Bones can heal, but OFTEN the affect of negative words can not only HURT TERRIBLY, but may NEVER HEAL!!!  I try to watch what I say, but I am, unfortunately, not above saying a harsh word or two.  When I do, heaven help me, I do my best to go back and explain my stupidity and apologize profusely.  On the other hand, kind words can also have a LONG TERM EFFECT, but a good one!  Tuesday, for example, I was having my weekly lunch at the "Buffalo Nickel" with Jon Tusak, the organist at the Casino, who performs EVERY WEEK (except when storm prohibits), Friday-Monday, 6:30-7:30pm, free, included in the price of the movie.  DON'T MISS IT, FANTASTIC!  The BN has the weekly special, "Baja Style Fish Taco".  GREAT price, LARGE amount, WONDERFUL meal.  As I was leaving, a man came up to me and said, "Aren't  you Chuck Liddell?"  It is usually, "Aren't you Jon Tusak?"  I was taken aback, but he told me that he and his wife were loyal readers and so I quizzed him about some columns and he REMEMBERED everything.  Better than my memory!  His favorite stories were those concerning God affecting my life!  He wanted to have a picture taken with me and his wife and he said I didn't have to get him in a headlock!  (My article, "You're A Liar", August 8, 2015,  Jon took the picture and my DAY, NO WEEK, NO MONTH, WAS MADE!  Thank you so much Bruce and Christine Wilson.  Now I am motivated even more to "pass forward" only words of praise and encouragement!  Share with me so I can share with the world those times when you have been blessed with WONDERFUL WORDS (
It must have been around 2002 when I was driving "charters" around the Island for "Catalina Transportation Services".  I had just taken a group up to the "Airport-In-The-Sky" for lunch.  I couldn't help but overhear a women and two men talking a bit loudly, as they seemed VERY frustrated!  Always wanting to help (O. K., I'm a "busy body"!).  I went over to them, apologized for interrupting, and asked  if I could be of any service.  I lived on the Island and drove professionally.  They seemed a bit relieved to have someone to "vent" to.  The lady explained that they were doing some "location scouting" for a movie that was going to be made on Catalina, specifically at the Airport.  They were using a "model" plane for many of the scenes and wondered how they were going to get it up to the Airport from Avalon on those narrow windy road.  I asked them how long the wingspand was; 15'.  I explained that the roads were much too narrow for this, especially with the two way traffic, but asked if they could  fold the wings, making less plane to maneuver.  They said they could, but were still VERY CONCERNED about the logistics!
Suddenly I got a "brain storm", or at my age, a "Reverse Senior Moment", and I asked how they were going to get the actors and crew up to the Airport for their "shoot".  They said they were planning to fly everything in from the mainland.  I then asked, what I thought was the obvious, "Couldn't you simply put your model on the same plane with all of your other equipment and crew and simply fly it over?  Thus eliminating Avalon and the road issues?"  Three faces lit up as they realized I had solved their problem!  They thanked me profusely, but suddenly I realized that I had just talked myself out of a charter and a chance to be part of the movie (maybe at least in the credits, that NO ONE EVER READS!).  Sorry, Karin and Connie, but I didn't want to take the chance of Catalina NOT being used for a film, and thus not being added to the over 600 that had already been made here since 1910!
The movie came out in 2004 and was a "blockbuster"!  The scene they used at the Airport was of this experimental plane that had taken off and crashed on the mainland.  It was based on a true story, but Catalina wasn't involved.  Do you know the name of the movie?  I will give you a change to think?  (music from "Final Jeopardy").
In reaction to Sunday's "Academy Awards Ceremony", it won 3 Oscars, and although "nominated", REALLY DID NOT WIN IN THE CATEGORY OF "BEST FILM"!!!
Interesting though, Howard Hughes, who was the main character that Leonardo DeCaprio portrayed, often frequented Catalina.  Old timers remember him coming over in the '30's with his then, "companion", Katherine Hepburn!  Boy, those were the days!