Tonight on Biography...
The search is on, and so far we appear to have some mixed results. I decided to start by searching out the celebrity who piqued my curiosity most. At first I was looking at obscure German actor Udo Kier who fit the bill on being relatively unknown and downright strange, along with having a freaky eye thing. I was interested to see he had worked with German director Ranier Werner Fassbinder, and well he had the freaky eye thing. Then I learned how “close” he worked with Fassbinder and things just started getting a little too odd for my taste. He was in Madonna’s SEX book for heavens sake! Sorry Udo, you did have potential as a celebrity obsession.
After that weird touch with Euro-obsession I decided to stay a little closer to home and pick someone a little safer, cleaner, masculine, and had less of the freaky eye thing. I needed someone who was comfortable, seasoned, and batty as a loon. Like a well-worn baseball mitt, your favorite cap, or Pia Zadora the answer was right in front of me, Mr. Peter Graves. I did some checking and Peter excels in one category that even the Five Times Better Mark Northover did not, he’s alive. Sure in Peter’s existence in the realm of the living, I have taken him as my idol of obsession and balm of my writer's block.
In order to commemorate the moment and to spread the legend of this man far and wide, I have prepared a syntax challenged poem which I feel encapsulates the young Peter and his hypnotic effect on the audience.
The Natatorium at the University of Minnesota (An Ode)
by Stew Miller
O darkest of brow and rosiest of cheek,
You walk on an ethereal plain we cannot touch.
Your intentions are humble and your manner meek.
Villains and scoundrels soon to fear your manly clutch.
They will scatter like water on a red hot skillet,
And flee when the heat of the fire is too much.
Worked your way through night school on a billet,
Stationed with the Navy when you were still a teen.
If that was only true, I needed a rhyme for skillet.
The manner of a puma, with the reflexes of a lean
Cat whose name escapes me, perhaps if it helps
I could look it up in some feline magazine.
But Peter fears not the great cats paw, or the whelps
It brings to his translucent skin, “Good morning Mr. Phelps.”