English-born Webster "Cobby" Wolfe is a handicapped casino hustler in my novel, "IF IT AIN'T NAILED DOWN." Due to the nature of his physical deformity, his role in the casino heist is limited to being a look-out. However, the Cobby character is based on a real person.
Unhealthy looking, scruffy and filthy, this man that I will continue to call Cobby was an apparent victim of the drug thalidomide. Thalidomide was prescribed to pregnant women in Europe from 1956-1962 to reduce the affect of morning sickness. Unfortunately, it wasn't tested properly and approximately 10,000 children were born with severe birth defect...mainly undeveloped limbs. In Cobby's case, he has two baby hands that look like flippers growing from his shoulders.
In developing his character, I couldn't help but realize what kind of nightmare it must be to be in his predicament. Added to his troubles, Cobby was a lone wolf, (thus his last name). It seemed obvious to me that without a lot of help, it would be hard for him to survive. So when I hadn't seen the real Cobby for quite some time, I assumed he was dead.
Well, last week after about five years of not seeing him pan-handling in the casino, Cobby crossed in front of my car on Pacific Avenue. I was both happy and relieved to see him. Plus, I was glad that I treated him sympathetically in my book.
On the other hand, I expected Evel Knievel to live to a hundred and eleven...but he didn't. Robert Craig Knievel died last week at the age of 69.
I never gravitated to his motorcycle feats of daring-do. But throughout his celebrity run, I knew who he was and what he did. He made a nice buck and certainly had an enormous following. So I don't mean to diminish him or his accomplishments, BUT !
After his death I watched a montage of his career highlights and low lights. Mixed in was a commentary that chronicled his gazillion broken bones and the lifetime of pain he endured.
Seeing it only solidified my indifference in him. I'm sorry, I don't get it. When I saw him successfully fly over a row of buses... it looked so easy that I couldn't get excited for the risk he was taking. Then when he crashed--all I could think was: SCHMUCK !
Yes I do realize that he is the father of today's XTREME sports...which I do appreciate...and still, I can't get past the word schmuck.
In keeping with the death theme; the rabbit has died, or should I say the urban legend surrounding the rabbit has died.
"DICKIE ROBERTS" was another crumby David Spade movie from 2003. In it, there was a sequence where the hated next door neighbor's pure white rabbit was killed by the family dog. The family sought to avoid any liability and bought an identical rabbit and secretly returned it to its pen.
When the neighbors got home, they were aghast to find out that their dead and buried rabbit has risen from the grave. Further, their only explanation for it was; Satan's folly. Therefore with the devil at their doorstep, they moved away.
About ten years ago, this story, almost word for word, was told to me in first-hand by a friend. When I told them about Dickie Roberts, they told me that it DIDN'T happen to them...that they had heard about it from someone else. Nevertheless, another urban legend can be permanently buried.
Lastly, and most importantly, "MORE GLIB ThAN PROFOUND," lives! It lives so well that on December 9th, I celebrated my web-page's first anniversary. I couldn't have done it without your readership, constructive criticism and support. Thank you all so much and my goal for 2008 will be to entertain you with even higher levels of glibness, BUT... with only half the calories.