THRILLVILLE: Will "the Thrill" Viharo's weird, wild world of Pulp Fiction, B Movies, & the Lounge Lizard Lifestyle.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

IT CAME FROM THE NEW PARKWAY! Plus! Tiki Goddess Meets Police Woman!

I had a feeling 2012 was going to be a landmark year for me, at least professionally, and so far that hunch is holding true. Within the course of a few days, I experienced three milestone events, two of which may prove life changing, and all of which were certainly life affirming. 
At the site of The New Parkway, 24th @ Telegraph, Oakland
First, I announced on Facebook last Friday that I was offered and have accepted the position of Publicist/Special Events Consultant for The New Parkway, opening later this summer or fall at 24th & Telegraph, at the remote end of Oakland's miraculously resurgent Uptown district, so it'll be a big part of the Oakland Art Murmur's First Fridays events (I'll be at the site on Friday, February 3, for an open house), plus it's accessible via public transportation, and right near a shimmering strip of hoppin' bars, restaurants and nightclubs, so it's already in good company. I very much look forward to working with entrepreneur J. Moses Ceaser and his team, and infusing the converted warehouse with the spirit of the original Parkway, as well as the community still mourning its loss. I plan to bring back a lot of beloved programs while introducing new concepts, so it will be a healthy and hopefully successful mix of the best of the past with the potential of the present and the promise of the future. So far this news has been greeted with great enthusiasm by former patrons, and we won't let them down. (Read my Examiner interview with Moses here.) Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in...

Cover art by Michael Fleming
Later that night, my friend and writing partner Scott Fulks informed me that our ambitious collaboration It Came From Hangar 18 just went live on Kindle (purchase here). The print edition is coming soon; he sent for some proof copies to check out before we approve a large batch for our official Book Release Party at Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge on Thursday, March 1, with live music by sci-fi surfers The Tomorrowmen. This is the fruition of a lot of hard work - I wrote most of the 500+ plus page epic from Scott's initial sketchy outline, fleshing out his skeletal crew of characters, then adding a massive cast as I developed the story, bouncing ideas off of Scott, who then infused his own highly complex original scientific theories, which I then smoothly integrated into the text. There's simply nothing else like it out there, and I have high hopes for it.

Tiki Goddess meets Police Woman!
With Angie Dickinson, Castro Theater, 1/21/12
Last but not least, last Saturday night, Monica and I attended our pal Eddie Muller's incredibly popular, world famous film festival Noir City where we met guest of honor Angie Dickinson, appearing with two of her vintage cult crime classics, The Killers (1964) and Point Blank (1967), both co-starring one of my favorite movie tough guys, Lee Marvin. Eddie interviewed her on stage during intermission, but before the show, Monica and I got to meet and chat with her  in the Castro Theater's mezzanine, and it was a surreal pleasure and true honor. Angie is 80 years old this year, but is as lively and beautiful and sexy as ever, on top of being amazingly sweet, gracious, friendly, and witty. Monica told her how much she admired her iconic role as Pepper in the legendary '70s television series Police Woman while growing up, and I told Angie how much I loved her in the Rat Pack classic Ocean's 11 (1960) and Roger Corman's Big Bad Mama (1974), co-starring William Shatner. She loved the fact that I host an annual tribute to Big Bill costar called Shatfest. She couldn't have been nicer, and we couldn't have more thrilled.

Anyway, 2012 is off to a swingin' start. Hold on tight, it's gonna be an awesome ride.  Cheers.