Monday, March 16, 2009


I've been in Seattle for the last five days, and haven't had time to listen (carefully) to any music. Instead of throwing a clip of Hendrix or Cobain at you, here's another favorite son of the city, Bruce Lee. My first introduction to Lee was from watching the 1970s TV show Longstreet, starring James Franciscus. There was a spate of gimmick cop shows during that era: Ironside (detective in wheelchair), Cannon (fat detective who looked like Grover Cleveland) and Kojak (bald detective who liked lollipops). The gimmick in Longstreet was that he had been blinded (and widowed) while opening a booby-trapped bottle of champagne. I had a huge crushie on the lead, James Franciscus, and kept a TV Guide feature about him lovingly wrapped in tissue paper under my folded sweaters. You see, puberty wasn't going well for me, at least according to what I could see in the mirror. The idea of having a blind boyfriend was appealing.

My ongoing love affair with James Franciscus prevented me from fully appreciating the talents of his costar, Bruce Lee. In the clip above, Lee gets all grandmastery and philosophical with his blind student while crazy jazz plays in the background. Watching it, I wonder why the saggy crotch of Franciscus' sweat pants didn't bother me in 1971.

Just because, here's the graphics and opening title them (by Quincy Jones) for the show Ironside, starring Raymond Burr.


Anonymous said...

From the Department of Missed Opportunities--Longstreet should have kicked the laundry basket out of the maid's hands, scattering delicate underthings all over Bruce Lee. Man, I shoulda been a screenwriter.

The Fifty Foot Blogger said...

That's Longstreet's laundry; Bruce would have been covered with tighty whiteys, which would have appealed to an entirely different demographic.

Anonymous said...

Sid was a HUGE Bruce Lee fan as a kid. I can imainge him watching this show, nodding approvingly at Bruce Lee's philosophical musings while munching on a pinwheel cookie.

Larry B.