The mock mid-century Case Study house of Derek Taylor, the Beatles’ permanent PR person, hung out above Sunset Boulevard, suspended somehow from a bare-naked hill at the prow of Laurel Canyon. We all sat in a semi-circle in the dark, ritualistically staring out into the faraway glow of the spires of downtown L.A. Someone handed me a smoke. And I fell into a dream.
As it lifted cosmically off the floor, my hands and arms were resting casually at peace on the puffy arms of a floral patterned overstuffed chair. I looked over my sunglasses to see into the dark night as the chair morphed into a topless early Corvair convertible. Like a Starship, it hovered above the hills, then did a slow-motion barrel roll and gently flew up above the sparkle in the purple haze above Laurel Canyon, turning to fly into the klieg lights illuminating the distant Hollywood sign far out there on the horizon. I felt just like Dumbo. Dumbo painted in airbrush.
I forget everything else about the trip but I do recall that I had a gentle reentry and soft moon landing as the Corvair settled gently down onto the carpet and resumed being a chair. The rug came into focus. It was faded deep green shag, like the inside of a van, and gave off wavering damp vapors of aged cigarette smoke and stale spilled jug wine and ‘70s unmanicured sex.
Now alerted to reality by this, I asked myself, “Who ok’d this look?” What happened to the airbrush fantasy heaven of Dumbo?
Excerpted from Mike’s text in Overspray (http://www.pictureboxinc.com/product/id/297/)