My garage sale and film festival experiences.
By Hannah Wallace

Man, I’m going to write about something else entirely, but first I have to say, I just spent my lunch break out in this incredible spring weather: warm and humid, but with a cool breeze like a sip of lemonade—or perhaps iced tea, which I bought at that hidden oenophile haven, the Short Stop on Orange Avenue. With my tea and a bag of peanuts, I walked away from the water for once and sat down with my book in Laurel Park—as in, the park itself, not just the neighborhood. It was quiet but for blue jays and mockingbirds, and completely deserted. I tell you, with all these peaceful scenes so near to the office, it’s all I can do to maintain my neuroses.


A sampling of our high-tech advertising.


Anyway, I’m happy to report another successful weekend—even though it started at 6 a.m. on Saturday, as we rose to beat the pre-dawn yard-sale crazies we were warned would be knocking. They didn’t, of course, but at least we were ready to open our garage door at first light. Not exactly a deluge of shoppers (fortunately, there wasn’t an actual deluge, either), but we did make $125, which added up to a $100 profit after $4 for poster board signs and $21 for an ad in the Bradenton Herald. (Perhaps you saw it; the headline read, “Buy our stuff—we’re going to Vegas!”) I’m not even sure the ad was all that useful. We should’ve handed out “How did you hear about us?” customer surveys to plan future marketing strategies.


CCB keeps an eye out for customers.

Most importantly, our garage is now down a microwave, two (ugly) lamps, a vacuum, a twin mattress and box spring, and a couple dozen Playstation 2 games. We can almost fit a car in there, even. Time to buy more crap!
Can’t say much for When Did You Last See Your Father?, the film fest movie we saw Saturday afternoon—other than Colin Firth is still handsome, Jim Broadbent looks surprisingly like Robin Williams, and putting the camera in orbit around your leads does not, in fact, heighten the emotional impact of the shot. Of course, the film fest atmosphere emphasizes the film’s artistic ambition. I just wish that beyond the final thought, which satisfyingly elaborated on the title, the screenwriter would’ve lent something more profound to the same old story of fathers and sons.
That night, we grilled shish kebabs and swung the pendulum back to Hollywood fare to watch What Lies Beneath, Robert Zemeckis’ homage to Hitchcock.
I admit, the film fest really tickles me. I keep daydreaming about running into William H. Macy and Felicity Huffman and engaging them in a conversation about Magnolia and Sports Night. Then they’d ask for a tour of Sarasota, and I’d oblige them, and we’d end the evening at some nonchalant watering hole—O’Leary’s or Shakespeare’s—laughing about movies and exchanging email addresses.
Uh, yeah.
So, anyway, after I made us rush through dinner at Patrick’s Monday night only to realize that my tickets were actually for a film on Tuesday, CCB and I headed to Zoria, anyway, to enjoy a bit of the atmosphere. It wasn’t crowded at 7 p.m.—peak screening time, I imagine—but I did notice a guy at the end of the bar with a film fest badge. I was about to comment on the fun of mingling with insiders, when the guy brusquely summoned the bartender to request a new glass of wine—what he’d been given was, he said, from a bad bottle—and then rolled his eyes at the second offering. Nothing says “unjustifiably self-important” like being rude to wait staff.

I bet Felicity Huffman would’ve kicked the snot out of him.

My new best friends.

I’m off to satisfy my Ca’Rina panini craving before heading to the Hollywood 20. Anybody else seen any interesting movies at this year’s Sarasota Film Festival? What kind of fun have you been having, inside the theater and out? Leave me a comment and let me know.