Let's flip this question around ... which woman never gets consideration for being hot by the media, but everyone secretly digs her? The all-time Hall of Famer in this category was Mrs. Keaton from "Family Ties," but that's a story for another time. Anyway, I nominate Larry David's wife (Cheryl) in "Curb Your Enthusiasm." I always dug her, I was afraid to tell anyone about it ... then I was on the phone with my buddy Joe House, when he suddenly wondered:
"All right, when are they writing an episode of 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' where Cheryl gets naked? Couldn't they have an episode where Larry walks in on her talking a shower and she gets mad at him or something? Would that kill them? Is that too much to ask?"
That prompted me to ask a couple more friends about it, and all of them agreed: Cheryl is dig-able. So why wouldn't you ever see her on the cover of a magazine, yet someone like Brittany Murphy has been on two Maxim covers? I don't get it.
Q: Where can I find these columns/books by William Goldman that you mentioned? Does he still write them?
-- Wally from Hoboken, N.J.
SG: Goldman is a famous screenwriter ("Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid," "Princess Bride," "Misery") who also writes about his experiences in Hollywood ("Adventures in the Screen Trade," "Which Lie Did I Tell?" and "The Big Picture"), and even collaborated on a sports book with Mike Lupica 15 years ago ("Wait Til Next Year," a charter member of the Sports Book Pantheon). He writes from the perspective of a movie fan and a Hollywood insider, even if that doesn't sound possible. If you like movies and you like reading someone who knows how to write, I can't imagine why you wouldn't enjoy his stuff.
My favorite Goldman moment ("Which Lie Did I Tell," Page 23): "I don't understand the creative process. Actually, I make a concerted effort not to understand it. I don't know what it is or how it works but I am terrified that one green morning it will decide not to work anymore, so I have always given it as wide a bypass as possible."
(People always e-mail me wondering what it's like to write for a living. Well, that's what it's like: a constant hole in the pit in your stomach. And yet I digress.)
Q: A bunch of my friends were sitting around watching one of the
Lakers-Kings playoff games and had this discussion: If five of us were to
take on the Lakers in a full game of basketball, and the Lakers were to play hard against us, how many points do you think we would score?
-- Gavin Lazarow, Seattle
SG: In a 48-minute game, probably between 16 and 20 points, only because the Lakers would get bored at some point and wouldn't be trying as hard. And you might nail a couple of long-range 3s.
(See, this would be a great idea for a TV program: ordinary people going against professional teams, in a real game with real rules. We could set a gambling line and everything. Like the Lakers going against Gavin and his friends ... I would make the Lakers 188-point favorites. Would you take the Lakers or Team Gavin? Or what about Team Gavin going against the New York Liberty, with the Liberty as 68-point favorites? The possibilities are endless. I'm telling you, I should be running a network.)