Monday, July 27, 2015

And he dreamed of a ladder reaching up to Heaven

Genesis 28:12

And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven; and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it.

ויחלם והנה סלם מצב ארצה וראשו מגיע השמימה; והנה מלאכי אלהים עלים וירדים בו׃

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Saturday, July 25, 2015

This was the night I introduced Elvis Costello to Spinal Tap

Backstage at UCLA's Royce Hall for the Folksmen's June 1, 2001 gig at the Harry Smith Tribute Concert, I photographed Elvis Costello hanging out with my bud Beck. Later I took Elvis downstairs to Spinal Tap's dressing room and left them alone to get acquainted. (I was/am Tap's webmaster.)

Costello joined Spinal Tap/The Folksmen onstage later that year when the Back from the Dead Tour brought the world's loudest band to Carnegie Hall.

Friday, July 24, 2015

I knew my 2011 Donald Trump story 'had legs'

In April 2011, I was the editor of AOL's Brentwood Patch on Los Angeles' ritzy Westside. The next month I was fired for alleged "racism."

But I'm getting ahead of myself.

In April 2011, Donald Trump's "birther" noises reminded me that he had been in my class at the University of Pennsylvania, when I was managing editor of the student newspaper.

I wanted to know more about this loud-mouthed vulgarian, so I looked for his photo in our Class of 1968 college yearbook. Unlike me (yearbook photo), he wasn't there.

I asked Trump about it in an opinion piece for Patch:
Dear Donald Trump: Where Is Your College Yearbook Photo? 
The bouffant reality star and real estate flipper questions the President. Here's a question for Trump.
Although the story was popular, it never got as big as I had hoped. And I got fired a few weeks later, so I was not inclined to promote the URL.

In October 2012, I resurrected the question on POCHO, my Ñews y Satire site, but never heard back from Don.

Flash forward.

Earlier this week, The Donald was bragging about his success at Penn's Wharton School, contrasting it with Senator John McCain's Annapolis performance. One smart reporter wanted to learn more about the nominee wannabe's college career.

Nancy Dillon, L.A. Bureau Chief for the N.Y. Daily News, found my old story and asked me for comments.  I made the headline on Tuesday:

Donald Trump's UPenn classmates have 'no memory of him,' doubt his claims of being top in class

Talk show hosts Roe Conn and Anna Davlantes of WGN in Chicago were next.

Here's audio of my 8-minute Wednesday segment in which I called Trump "an enigma wrapped inside an enchilada."

And last night (Thursday) I was on NBC/Universal's ACCESS HOLLYWOOD with the 1968-vintage Penn yearbook, (photo by STACY) looking, fruitlessly, for Donald.

Click here for my brief appearance on the July 23 episode. I start at 1:55.

What have I learned this week?
  • It's possible to be briefly famous in 2015 for NOT KNOWING SOMEONE in 1967-68
  • I was right about that story. And it outlasted Brentwood Patch.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Introducing...FOX HEADROOM

Listen: Donald Trump Was My College Classmate, A True Story

Roe Conn and Anna Davlantes of WGN had me on their Chicago talk radio show today (7/22/2015) to discuss my University of Pennsylvania classmate Donald Trump, the mystery man of the Class of 1968.

He's "an enigma wrapped inside an enchilada," I explained.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

NYDailyNews quotes me on self-proclaimed college BMOC Donald Trump: ‘No one remembers him’

Nancy Dillon of the New York Daily News interviewed me Tuesday about my University of Pennsylvania classmate Donald Trump:

“No one remembers him,” another former classmate, Dennis Wilen, said Tuesday.

Now a writer in California, Wilen was managing editor of the campus newspaper and said he only learned about Trump when the billionaire became famous in New York.

“I think he’s a racist blowhard,” Wilen said Tuesday. “And if you have to rely on something you did in the ’60s to validate what you’re saying today, you’ve lost your way.”

Nancy's story is here.