Past Imperfect

Past Imperfect – #15

Photographer: “Excuse me, Miss Dunaway. What exactly are you and your leg doing?”

Faye: “I’m photographing you photographing me. It’s all the rage in the art scene after Antonioni started doing it when he directed Blow-Up. And artsy people really enjoy doing obscure things based on obscure Italian directors in the 60s who made subtitled movies.”

Photographer: “How lovely. Still, I wasn’t really photographing you. I was waiting for you to stop jacking around and get out of the way because we have Claudette Colbert getting antsy in the Green Room, and you know how those French women get when schedules are interrupted. In fact, you can’t really be here.”

Faye: “Why not? I’ve played Bonnie Parker and Joan Crawford. I think that gives me the right to be wherever I want to be. And stop moving around so much, you little beast. I’m trying to focus but I can’t do that if you’re channeling Helen Keller at the water well.”

Photographer: “Miss Dunaway, you really need to go. This is where we do the Past Imperfects, and you don’t qualify for one of those.”

Faye: “The Past Imperfects? I’ve heard of those. Go ahead, put me in one of them. Hell, even bad publicity is still publicity.”

Photographer: “As I mentioned, Miss Won’t-Go-Away, you’re not the right material. We only lovingly desecrate older black-and-white movies.”

Faye: “Oh, please. I’ve got this odd thing going on with my leg, I have a Hurricane Katrina hairdo, and I’m sporting so much eyeliner that people in Australia are experiencing an unannounced eclipse. There’s enough material here for you to get a good three-page post. Just pretend that this shot is from some lost two-reeler directed by Charlie Chapstick when he was on yet another morphine bender.”

Photographer: “I can’t do that. The film lovers on my website will know right away this shot is a still from your 1978 movie, Eyes of Laura Mars, wherein you played a photographer dealing with the psychological trauma of supermodels being killed off faster than replacements can be found in what will eventually be the former Soviet Union.”

Faye: “That’s ridiculous. No film lover is that good. I barely remember the movie myself, and I was on the set. You can just fudge things a bit, like the way you try to make your posts seem more interesting than they really are.”

Photographer: “Apparently you haven’t read the comments on my blog. If I try to deceive them in any way, they are on me like it’s last call at the only Chinese Buffet in town.”

Melanie, a freelance artist, wandering onto the stage, fresh from Utah because she has to drive really far to find rewarding recreational activities: “I think Faye Dump-Away is right. You really need to stop being so anal about the photos you choose.”

Photographer, possibly harboring anti-Utah sentiments or probably just perturbed that things were out of control once again: “How the hell did you get in here?”

Melanie: “Momma has skills that you don’t need to know about.” Turning to Faye: “I really loved your work in The Graduate.”

Faye: “I wasn’t in The Graduate, Utah Gal. And I’m sure you weren’t either.”

Melanie: “Oh. Well, screw you, then.” Turning to the Photographer: “I’m going to go talk to Claudette in the Green Room. Maybe she won’t be so snooty, even if she is French.” Then Melanie sauntered away, snatching a few things from the craft services table because, well, you might need some nosh in a pinch. Measure twice, cut once.

Photographer: “Is it time for one of my pills yet?”

Faye: “Oh, cut the crap. Just put me in one of your Past Imperfects. I’d beg you, but I’m too tired after trying to keep my eyes open with all this mascara.”

Photographer, sighing: “Fine. I give in. This post will just have to do, as too many people are too determined to question my judgement. Tomorrow is another day.”

Melanie, hollering from the Green Room: “You stole that line from Gone with the Wind!”

Photographer: “See what I mean?”

Faye: “I’d feel sorry for you but my leg is cramping.”


Note: Previously published, modified somewhat. The original version of Past Imperfect #15, written several years ago, before the “Past Imperfect” concept was fleshed out, had a much shorter and different story line. (Kudos to those of you who follow both sites who have noticed that the stories on “Crusty Pie” often change dramatically when I shove them over here on “Bonnywood Manor”. Additional kudos to those of you who still check the “Crusty Pie” site, even though I haven’t posted anything over there in many moons. That’s about to change, if I can stay focused.)

I had avoided recycling this one because the timestamp on the photo was a clear violation of the Past Imperfect theme. Then I had a conversation with Melanie, who has somewhat convinced me that I should branch out a bit. Naturally, I took said conversation and worked it into the revision, because Bonnywood writing is all about taking reality and squeezing something else out of it…


24 replies »

  1. Green Roomin’ is the place to be,
    French spinnin’ is the life for me,
    Sand spreadin’ out so far and wide
    Keep that dragon, just gimme that sunny side …

    My apologies to Green Acres.

    Not sure where that came from, but I read your post and there it was. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Something was perplexing about that photo, and it wasn’t Ms Dunaway’s legs.
    It’s reversed, I think, going from the grip of the camera. Theoretically you could use the focus ring with your grip that way round but she couldn’t trip the shutter with the film (yes, film! Imagine!) rewind knob with her left hand.

    Sorry for displaying my camera nerdery along with my other questionable attributes.
    I’ll go now.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I don’t know if you’ve seen the film, so I don’t want to spoil anything, but the discombobulation would fit in with the psychology of the story. It was probably just an accident, but it might have been planned…

      And please, feel free to display nerdery at all times. I certainly do…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. If the photo fits, ignore the era. Never saw ‘Eyes’ but she was a thrillingly chilly villainess in 3 and 4 Musketeers, Michael York versions. And if she keeps her leg out like that someone’s going to get a kick out of it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I vaguely remember seeing the Musketeer films at the local drive-in as a youngster, but I don’t remember the content other than there were some ribald bits But when “Eyes” came out, five or so years later, it definitely made an impression. I think I even had the soundtrack, on 8-track…

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I remember “Blow-Up.” That was a great movie! As a budding photographer, I was intrigued as he enlarged the picture bigger and bigger and ran into the limitations of sharpness and granularity. His romps with those models were pretty cool too.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m glad you’re branching out, just as I’m glad Faye is keeping up with her daily yoga practice. I’m not sure how the heels will work with the balance poses, but I’m sure she’ll find a way. One must keep up appearance, you know.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m not completely branched, as I still have my comfort zone “look” for the photos, but I’ve also received an inspiring cache of suggested, more-modern photos in the last few days from several Bonnywooders. So it’s possible that the timeline for the Past Imperfects might shift a tad more toward this century in the next few months…

      I’ve never actually done yoga before, not to any realistic degree and certainly not in heels. You? I recently wrote a business plan for one of my friends who wants to open a yoga studio, and now I’m mildly interested. Forty years after it became trendy. That’s the Oklahoma in me, a bit slow on the uptake…


  6. *wandering back from the Green Room*…to offer you sincere thanks for including me in this romp of Past Imperfects”. You honor me sir. I remember vividly seeing “The Eyes of Laura Mars” and thinking that guy at the end … Ooo should I put SPOILER ALERT in big letters here? and thinking Ms. Mars (aka Dunaway) could have taken some make up lessons from him… Or am I mixing the media again (entirely possible).

    Now in another recent conversation you mentioned that your barrel of appropriate photos is getting a bit thin. I found perhaps twelve truly appropriate photos for your perusal. Nothing newer than 1945 either. Where do you want them? Cause they’re crowding my truck space something awful…..

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think I remember the character you are referencing, but it’s been quite some time since I’ve seen the movie. Maybe I’ll track it down on one of the streamers so we can compare notes…

      The photos can be sent to That’s the account that I often ignore, but I’ve been checking it much more regularly lately since several folks have been excavating and sending…


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