My new book, The Bastard of Beverly Hills features a funny (but true) story about how, as a little boy, I played a small part in saving my parents and their friends from drowning at sea on the way to Catalina. It was the start of a long weekend, and the eccentric cohort that boarded the ship that day, comprised of some wildly successful folks in the entertainment industry, including noted publicist Warren Cowan, his socialite wife Barbara Gilbert (mother of Melissa Gilbert from Little House on the Prairie), Academy Awards producer, Buzz Kohan, and several others. And though it was before noon, it seemed there was a bit of drinking going on, including by the captain and crew…
As I write in the story…
The gang was in rare form that afternoon, as was our captain, who’d gotten hammered before charting the course for Catalina. I wandered around the deck at first but, sensing the adults wanted to have their fun, stowed away in the galley, reading my favorite book, Choose Your Own Adventure.
Suddenly, I had a sinking sensation.
A thru-hull had ruptured, and the cabin started filling with water! I’d never been on a boat, so I wasn’t sure what to do. Everybody on board was tanked, and nobody wanted to listen to a freaked-out little freckled kid clamoring to turn the ship around. But after enough hand-wringing, the captain followed me down below. Seeing the leak, he promptly ordered the vessel back to the harbor.
“Folks, we’ll have to pull back into the slip,” he alerted the passengers. “We’ve got a little shaft problem.”-The Bastard of Bevery Hills from JIA Publishing
Still in the dark about my adoption, I remained somewhat lost at sea during this time of my life. But as out of place as I was on that boat, and as perilous as the circumstances may have been, I felt safe amongst that tribe. Many of them have now departed on a different celestial voyage.
Had my mother not captured the whole incident on video, readers would likely never believe it happened the way I described in the book!
Sadly, while most of these people are gone, a few of them remain. Like my Aunt Barbara Gilbert. I was delighted when only a few days ago, her daughter Melissa shared news of the book’s release on her Instagram account.
My book is full of imagery related to water and the notion of wind and storms play heavily troughout the text. I’m learning from reactions of people like Melissa and others who have written to me that the book has stirred up within them a mix of emotions. It’s been referred to as a whirlwind, and that’s what I was hoping for when I wrote it. I wanted to delve deep, into an abyss where I might have been afraid to drown, but had to explore if I were ever to recover some of the joy and innocence I once had as a child.
If you have not yet purchased your copy of The Bastard of Beverly Hills, please pick up a copy today at Amazon!