100 Things About Me #171

Michael Caine is making news, WENN reports:

"The actor played spy Harry Palmer in three movies in the mid-1960s - 'The Ipcress File,' 'Funeral In Berlin' and 'Billion Dollar Brain' -- and he's keen to bring the bespectacled Cold War super agent back to life one more time."

Show Business Is My Life
The mention of "The Ipcress File" stirred memories of my 8th grade adolescence, working at the Emory Theatre, a single auditorium in Atlanta, where I apprenticed to become a professional motion picture machine operator. This film, as I recall, was the first 35mm feature I ever screened unsupervised to a paying audience.

I was manning -- rather, boying -- the snack bar during Christmastime, 1965. We'd close the counter by 10 p.m. and I'd climb the staircase to the projection booth each night and finish out the last show with approximately 90 minutes remaining to the end titles. My mentor left the premises early and drove home as part of the big test.

I was under a lot of pressure to not bumble the reels and keep the film advancing smoothly through the trusty pair of Simplex projectors. The large, satisfied audiences gazing Caine never knew an actual grown-up was not in control.

Showing movies properly is not as easy as the task might appear. The urge to make shadow puppets is darn near overpowering. I've always managed to stop two fingers short of a bunny.

I was pleased with my performances of "The Ipcress File," heavily determined by the not getting yelled at.

Operating the machinery without a safety net during those late nights was exhilarating, but -- hey, wait a minute! -- it meant my ride was already in bed.

I didn't mind. I had grinning achievements to ponder, walking out of the building and into more dark.

"The Ipcress File" (1965) Trailer via YouTube

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