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Sing With Me If It's Just For Today...
If I should fall behind, Guyster, wait for me.
Katy Rothaker
I’m watching my shoe, a Kenneth Cole design patterned after those of a beat cop, and I lick my finger then try to wipe away a permanent scuff. My shoe is going in lazy metronome motions, and while I’m listening intently to Jon describe a drunken Katy calling him at three in the morning on a regular basis, I'm just trying to get that smudge off my shoes, my flatfoot shoes.

I had called Jon five minutes earlier. “Did you hear about Katy?” Jon is now a senior development executive at a New York-based TV network, but at the time I first met him back in '93, he was Katy’s assistant and I was an agent in the department she was heading.

“Yes. I saw it in Variety yesterday.” He kind of laughed after he said this which threw me. I stopped rubbing my shoe. We were talking about Katy’s obituary, after all.

“I just feel sorry for her. Whatever hate I had was gone the moment I saw that yesterday,” I told him in the middle of his giggle. I actually stopped hating Katy years ago once my career slipped back on track and she was no more to me than a party anecdote or a playfully drunken imitation from Billy.

Katy would start to drink her vodka at ten in the morning and the slurring would begin around three. She would excuse herself, go home, drink more, then spend the night calling Billy and me, and I’d later find out that she would call Jon, as well. At night, she’d turn mean, real mean.

She affected an accent both regal and silly, proudly claimed she was from Poundridge as if that were impressive, and her hands always shook when she’d slowly bring her cigarette to her heavily lipsticked mouth. She’d routinely steal my deals, undermine my negotiations, and lie to the agency president about me. I wasn’t alone, though. She did it to everyone. When I was fired, the only time in my career that I’d ever been fired, she asked security to surround her claiming she feared for her personal safety.

Katy, Billy, and I once went to cover Carole King’s concert at the Beacon. Carole was a music client of the agency, and I became close to her while representing her much younger actor boyfriend. Backstage after the show, Katy started drinking. A lot. It took about twenty minutes for her to get sloshy. She started to paw at Carole in that holiday office party way, and I saw Carole squirm.

“Go hang out with Carole,” I whispered to Billy, “and I’ll put Katy in a cab.” I sweet-talked Katy out of the room, held her arm as I guided her up the stairs to the street. I verbally petted her as I would a dog, hailed a cab, and hugged her sloppy self good night. She tried to kiss me on the mouth. I told the cabbie to please make sure she got into the door of her apartment building, and went back to join Billy and the after party reverie.

Billy was sitting at the table with Carole talking about, well, I don’t know what they were talking about, but they were laughing and I nodded to Billy that Katy was gone. Carole caught my signals, shook her head, and said, “Katy’s quite a drinker, huh?” I blushed, smiled, and shrugged.

Jon and I traded a few more stories about Katy before I hung up and continued to rub that scuff off my shoe.

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26 comments or Leave a comment
zodmicrobe From: zodmicrobe Date: December 1st, 2005 07:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
It's weird sometimes to see how karma plays out.
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: December 1st, 2005 11:37 pm (UTC) (Link)
She was a scary woman who ultimately was a very lonely and sad one. My dimestore analysis is that her unresolved sexual identity (she never married) led to her alcoholism. If I hadn't been in the way of that collision, I may have been kinder in this post.
From: tequilaprophet Date: December 1st, 2005 07:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
You could tell the story with just the first two grafs and the last one.

But then, your message wouldn't be as subtle.
stutts From: stutts Date: December 1st, 2005 08:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
Good call.
From: tequilaprophet Date: December 1st, 2005 10:42 pm (UTC) (Link)
That is assuming, of course, that I know the exact purpose of this post...which I could easily not.
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: December 1st, 2005 11:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
I tried to accomplish a few things in this post when, in fact, it could've been pages and pages.

The purpose was to show how little I cared about Katy passing away even though she was an enormous presence in my life for a long time. I also wanted to give a glimpse at this fun and crazy relationship that Billy and Carole Kind had.

While the scuffed shoe part was accurate, I thought it also made a nice framework.

Did I over think it?
From: tequilaprophet Date: December 2nd, 2005 01:00 am (UTC) (Link)
It depends on your intent. I think you showed your relationship with Katy very well, but I feel your focus on Billy and Carole was a little weak. I just didn't feel it was a big part of the story.
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: December 2nd, 2005 01:04 am (UTC) (Link)
You're right. I shoehorned it there, and their story really deserves an essay of its own.
creactivity From: creactivity Date: December 1st, 2005 07:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
It's fascinating how people who were once significant in our lives (for reasons good and bad) end up being no more important than a scuff.
quuf From: quuf Date: December 1st, 2005 07:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
I remember you mentioning her a year or so ago. Poor soul.
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: December 1st, 2005 11:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
I have a ton of Katy stories that I'll trot out one day. She was quite a character, evil but fascinating.
ridiculicious From: ridiculicious Date: December 1st, 2005 08:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
How did she die?

It's so strange getting through such a hard time with a person, hating them, and then getting to that point where you just feel sorry for them.
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: December 1st, 2005 11:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
Variety listed it as a "long time illness."

She was such a benchmark of anger for me for so long, but now, it was just sad to hear of her passing.
gotu From: gotu Date: December 1st, 2005 08:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
She left the business altogether, then?
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: December 1st, 2005 11:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
She left the business after being fired by the agency. She moved to Florida and went into seclusion.

Right after she was fired, the president of the agency called me to apologize and told me that he fired the wrong person. At the time, it was very little consolation to hear this.
notoriousbrb From: notoriousbrb Date: December 2nd, 2005 12:29 am (UTC) (Link)

I'm an idiot, I know.

But what is it that you do for a living? It's so strange to me that I never think of people on the internet as having professions. I think only of what is placed before me. You as a lover. You losing people. You as a child. You making me laugh. Now I am insanely curious and trying not to be.
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: December 2nd, 2005 12:45 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: I'm an idiot, I know.

I'm a television network executive, of all things, but it is the least of what I'd like to be known as.
notoriousbrb From: notoriousbrb Date: December 2nd, 2005 12:55 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: I'm an idiot, I know.

Yeah. Never mind. I googled you and wish I hadn't. There sure is a lot about you out there, and now I plan to forget it all, if you don't mind. I don't want to think of you as I envision net execs. Is that wrong of me, or am I saying that wrong? Basically, I will just go on thinking of you as a writer.
stutts From: stutts Date: December 2nd, 2005 01:24 am (UTC) (Link)
You'll change your tune when you see him write about Scott Thompson.

Scott Thompson ... sigh.
notoriousbrb From: notoriousbrb Date: December 2nd, 2005 01:38 am (UTC) (Link)
You are shitting me. As in Scott Thompson the Scott Thompson? The Scott Thompson of my dreams? The man I so wished as a girl would change his mind and be into girls? The Scott Thompson who made me pee in my fishnets from laughing so hard until he made that terrible movie?

Come to think of it, I was more into Foley, but Thompson was pretty cool. If this is the same one. Does Terry work with him?

See. I don't fucking want to know.
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: December 2nd, 2005 01:59 am (UTC) (Link)
Now that I saw your picture yesterday, you bear more than a passing resemblance to his youngest brother.
notoriousbrb From: notoriousbrb Date: December 2nd, 2005 02:10 am (UTC) (Link)
Umm, thanks?
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: December 2nd, 2005 03:42 am (UTC) (Link)
Dammit! I meant that for Matt, although you don't look like Kathy with a "K," do you?
fairy From: fairy Date: December 2nd, 2005 01:40 am (UTC) (Link)
Maybe the scuff on the shoe is now gone :)

I really liked this.
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: December 2nd, 2005 01:58 am (UTC) (Link)
Thanks, hon. I've been keeping tabs on you, but just haven't commented a lot.

I'm glad all is going great, if not sometimes a little frustrating.
ubermunkey From: ubermunkey Date: December 2nd, 2005 04:25 am (UTC) (Link)
I like this, the whole scuff bit, the stabbing bitch. I like!
be well
26 comments or Leave a comment