There will be no traditional Blanket Of The Month this month. I received the tragic news that my Uncle Jack died on August 3. He was the most important person in my life – my inspiration and best friend – and frankly, writing about Indian blankets seems very unimportant at the moment. He was absolutely the most extraordinary person I’ve ever encountered and I wrote about him at length in December 2009. If you’re interested in reading about a true American original I would direct you to that entry.
Many of you know that I was a television writer in Hollywood for years. I was at Paramount Studios one day and ran into Jack Nicholson. We had met a couple years previously and he had no reason to remember me, but he did and we were shooting the breeze. A man approached and said, “I can’t believe it. Jack Nicholson. I’m sorry to interrupt you, but I just want to tell you you’re my favorite actor ever and you have more charisma than anyone in Hollywood.” Nicholson flashed his trademark smile and said, “Jesus, more charisma than anybody? My friend Barry here has known a helluva lot of celebrities. What do you think, pal? More charisma than anybody?” I immediately thought about my Uncle Jack and said, “With all due respect, you’re not even the most charismatic Jack I know.”