Fear must be gripping Hollywood as the rich and famous wait on the Angel of Death’s next two celebrity recruits now that he has Patrick Swayze in hand. Unless two famous people have already died that I am unaware of, the rule of three* is once again in play.
I saw the news flash about Swayze on Monday on one of the news sites but passed over it without a second thought. It wasn’t a surprise given the tabloid photos of his gaunt haunted face which have adorned the checkouts at the grocery for months now. He had pancreatic cancer. You don’t beat that. You simply hold it at bay for a while.
On Tuesday at yoga, Swayze was the topic of conversation among the women before class began.
“It’s so sad,” one remarked, “because he was only 57.”
Fifty-seven is actually not all that young, and over the course of those years, he was an Olympic contending gymnast and a dancer who rehearsed with the likes of Barishnakov. He married his high school sweetheart and despite the difficulties his alcoholism caused, they were married for 30 years during which time he built a solid acting career. It’s not as if he couldn’t look back and see a life lived. It’s not like everyone has that rearview moment at the end.
There was much discussion of the movies that touched them at different points and in different ways.
Dirty Dancing came up – of course. I have yet to see that movie all the way through. What I have caught, here and there, hasn’t compelled me to carve out the time to do so. The acting is pretty bad. And one person mentioned having pulled out her dvd of North and South for a marathon after she heard the news.
Ghost never came up. Which surprised me. But then again, it was an awful movie. A friend of mine dragged me to it when it was first out. We sat in a shoulder to shoulder cineplex where I could hear people all around me sucking air and/or panting as Swayze and Moore did that … thing … with the clay. Had those around me not been audibly aroused by this, I would have laughed because it is probably one of the cheesiest foreplay scenes ever filmed. But the “romance” of Ghost escaped me as much then as it does now.
“What is so romantic about a dead husband?” I asked Rob who shrugged as he chuckled a bit.
I remember Swayze most from Red Dawn and The Outsiders and Roadhouse. The first because I have always been a sucker for a good “end of life as we know it” flick. The second because it’s a fairly faithful adaptation of a wonderful book. The last because it is cheesey in it’s goodness. What’s not to love about a Zen bouncer who just wants to do his job? And have sex standing up.
“That was the most sensual love scene I have ever witnessed,” my friend gushed afterward. She was a drama teacher with a flair for it herself, so perhaps that’s why she didn’t recognize pottery porn when she saw it. The things that rendered some of my gender wet to the knees escapes me sometimes.
*And the second is Mary, of Peter, Paul and Mary. Three? Anyone? Anyone?