old Hollywood happiness

JJ and I went on a bona fide date last night.  We went to the Stanford Theater in Palo Alto and saw the 1942 movie “Random Harvest,” starring Ronald Coleman and Greer Garson.  Now, I love old black and white movies and am an amateur expert on old Hollywood movies, yet unbelievably I’d never heard of “Random Harvest” until about two years ago, when a friend of mine posted on FB that he had watched the movie.  I was intruiged; an old Hollywood movie that I had never heard of before?  So, I stored the name “Random Harvest” in the back of my mind all this time.

Periodically, we get mailings from the Stanford Theater which list their upcoming schedule of old movies.  I happened to wade through the schedule and noticed “Random Harvest!”  Well, I decided that I had to see it so I turned it into a date for JJ and me.

We drove down to Palo Alto, found parking very close to the theater (probably only possible because it was Monday evening), and found a restaurant a block away.  University Avenue is made up of all sorts of shops and restaurants, with white lights coating all the trees and buildings.  It’s lovely.  We ate at the University Cafe, where JJ had a fancy club sandwich with excellent clam chowder on the side, and I had a Dungeness crab cake club sandwich with tomato soup on the side.  It was all very good.  🙂

We then walked over to the theater and were surprised to hear organ music playing.  Well, I wasn’t totally surprised.  I knew the Stanford Theater had a big Wurlitzer organ, and I knew that when they showed old silent movies that people played along on the organ.  What I didn’t realize was that they have people performing on it every night when they show movies!  JJ loves the CD series called Ultra Lounge, and the style of the music that the organist was completely Ultra Lounge!  It was like a live Organs in Orbit concert!

We were even more delighted when, as the movie began to start and the curtains were drawn back (remember when movie theaters did that???), the Wurlitzer organ, while still being played by the organist, began to sink down on the stage.  It was awesome!  We were completely delighted (and couldn’t help bursting out into laughter) when at the end of the movie, the organ slowly rose up into view again as the organist played along with the end-of-the-movie music!  JJ and I laughed so hard we cried; I’m sure the others around us thought we were rude, but honestly, we thought the organ rising up out of the floor and playing along was the most awesome thing ever!

We could have stayed to watch the next movie, “The Philadelphia Story,” but we knew we had to get home.  However, they’re playing the movie “The Shop Around the Corner” next week, and I’ve wanted to see that movie for years!  That’s the movie that the movie “You’ve Got Mail” was based on.  I’m trying to convince JJ and I to have another date night, especially since my birthday is next week.  🙂

I’m really hoping they play “The Sound of Music” sometime in the future, or some other kid-friendly movie, so that I can take Lyd and/or Jujubee to see something there.  The theater is just beautiful, and the whole experience was just so excellent.

It was a very fun date for JJ and I, and we made a lot of good memories.  But now I’m a little irked with myself that we didn’t go to the Stanford Theater sooner!  We’ve lived here for 9 1/2 years, and this was our FIRST time going!!!  What the heck was I waiting for???

And, by the way, “Random Harvest” was an excellent movie!


One thought on “old Hollywood happiness

  1. Hey Emily! I just added your blog to my iGoogle page recently and I have really enjoyed reading your posts. Thanks especially for the recent post on the flu vaccine.

    I’ve heard of the Palo Alto theater and would love to go some day. “The Philadelphia Story” is one of my favorite old movies–I would have stayed!

    Anyway, keep up the good work. Have a blessed Christmas!


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