INTERVIEW / TELEPHONE INTERVIEW — TAPE #16, SIDE #2
Q: Mark Russell Bell
I: Marie Todd (friend)
Z: Carol Andersen (family history specialist)
P: Paul Russell (my father in California)
Q: I remembered the name of that film you were working on recently. “Independence Day”?
I: Oh yeah. I just worked on that one night at the LAX Airport.
Q: Is that a science fiction film?
I: It’s being directed by Roland Emmerich who did “Stargate.” It’s like a war of the worlds movie.
Q: There’s a casting director who I met at a party hosted by Fiona and this casting director was going to give him my script which was an adaptation of To Live Again by Robert Silverberg.
I: Oh yes. I read that.
Q: But, unfortunately, I think she had to go into rehab or before she could give it to him. Didn’t “Stargate” have the god Ra in it?
I: I believe so.
Q: Well, recently I’ve come to realize that I might be the reincarnation of Bel-Marduk, which seems to be another name for the god (Amun-)Ra.
I: Oh wow. (“IF”) So what does your T-shirt mean?
Q: Well, I chose this to wear because it’s so close to Halloween. It has a Buddhist theme.
I: It has pyramids and many interesting different designs.
Q: But I love yours. Your T-shirt’s great. It says: “Rock Your World.” (“I KNOW”) Sometimes it’s interesting to see what people’s T-shirts are.
I: Because of the self-expression? I received this because (“SHHHH”) I made a donation to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame museum.
Q: When I go to the gym I wear T-shirts and one of them my brother had brought back from the Bahamas for me. It has “BAHAMAS” on the upper left with a little sailboat below it so basically this could be seen as symbolically signifying ‘Bermuda’ with a ‘Triangle.’ The word “NASSAU” is below that.
I: There’s a triangle right behind you where we’re sitting, too.
Q: Some of these connections may be a bit vague. Another T-shirt that my brother gave me said, “The Discovery Channel.” It’s like I am The Discovery Channel.
I: Yes, you are. (laughs)
Q: It’s just interesting (“JUST TO”) to look at some of these parallels that we might not recognize at first. Now I do remember you were in a “Twilight Zone” episode.
I: I did it a long, long time ago and it was something that was no big deal.
Q: You never saw it probably.
I: You’re right. No, I didn’t.
Q: Any other interesting titles you remember?
I: I don’t think so.
Q: Anyway, I think God is continuously proving His existence by blessing individuals with his shared creativity that so many of us take for granted. Sometimes I even wonder if the appropriate question isn’t if Michael exists — it’s whether or not we do.
I: If you are interested in some other title that seems related, I never found any correlation in these things at the time but I worked on a show once that was called “Angel Falls” and I played a beautician in it.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THE FOLLOWING WAS RECORDED FROM MY PACIFIC BELL MESSAGE CENTER.)
I: Oh, hi, Mark. It’s me, Marie. I just called to say hi and happy Halloween. Trick or treat. And also you won’t believe this. I got called to go to work this afternoon again on “Independence Day” down on a soundstage in Culver City to shoot close-ups of reactions of alien lover groupies. (laughs) So I thought that was kind of funny. Anyway, give me a call if you get a chance. If I’m not here I’ve left for work and I hope you have a great day. Thanks. Bye.
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([FIONA MANNING] “MARK”)
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THE VOICE HEARD ON THE RECORDED MESSAGE SOUNDS LIKE MY FRIEND FIONA SAYING MY NAME. WHEN I CALLED HER BACK AND FOUND OUT SHE HADN’T CALLED ME AND BEEN DISCONNECTED I REALIZED IT WAS A SPIRIT VOICE.)
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(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THE FOLLOWING CONVERSATION WITH CAROL ANDERSEN WAS TAPED IN MY CONDO ON NOVEMBER 2ND.)
Z: Okay. Cool. This is your book we made for you.
Q: Oh great. I don’t understand why more people aren’t into genealogy. It’s so much fun.
Z: This is what we did on the Mc Elhattens.
Q: The spelling’s different too.
Z: Well, yeah, but you can see how Mc Elbatlaie — what you had written looks just like that.
Q: It’s just the penmanship.
Z: We’re pretty sure that’s what it is. These are our recommendations for future research. We’ll try to find who if anyone she married. And you recommended that we call your mom and that she had some information. We’ll look up Margaret’s brothers.
Q: I did mention to my mom that her parents might not have been married. And she was a little upset about that.
Z: Really? Well, maybe they were married, though. We do want to get the information from Thaddeus.
Q: I’ll call him.
Z: Because that would change any research that we might do. We did come up with some interesting things on Ira, Vermont. The Parkers. I didn’t want to do more with that until we got information from him. And I pulled off the Perry line for you. Regarding the Perry line—assuming that the Russell line is the one that has been researched—this connection isn’t real clear. The Clarissa, Sardis and Matthew Perry relationship isn’t clear to me. It’s on your chart but there are age problems.
Q: Uncle Bob did mention that there were age discrepancies in the family tree that he provided (“YEAH”) in terms of his own age even.
Z: We’ll review the ancestral file. A lot that I took was from the ancestral file. We need to confirm that up. And then there’s Anna Marie, your grandfather’s first wife, who is your direct ancestor. Her whole family line hasn’t been tapped.
Q: So we’ll get that from Thaddeus’s information.
Z: Maybe. He doesn’t have the same mother.
Q: I see. Well that information should be available to us.
Z: That’s the easy stuff. So I thought we could find out what her maiden name is and start that line. Anyway, here you go.
Q: Wow. Can you believe Peter Parker? That’s also Spider-Man’s alter-ego.
Z: Is it really? He’s an interesting guy and one of the things that we found out about him was that he was a shady character. He lived with his brother, Daniel, I think it was, and people in the town weren’t quite sure about —
Q: Was he a twin?
Z: I don’t know that he was a twin but there were several of them. And then here’s this Lovina Parker. This line could go back more probably. And here’s our Sardis. Then I patched in Matthew Calbraith Perry because that’s the one you had on your chart.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: INFORMATION PROVIDED BY JIM RUSSELL AT THURMAN, N.Y. ON JULY 4, 1950 TO BELLE R. NORTON AND COLLECTED BY DOROTHY L. FORSYTH FEBRUARY 19, 1965 MENTIONED A MATTHEW GALBRAITH PERRY AS BEING THE GRANDFATHER OF CLARISSA PERRY. ANDERSEN FAMILY SERVICES NOTED “IT SEEMS UNLIKELY THAT MATTHEW C. PERRY BORN ABOUT 1790 WOULD HAVE A GRANDDAUGHTER OLD ENOUGH TO BE MARRYING IN 1843.”)
Z: So here’s Matthew Calbraith and then his ancestry goes back here — Christopher Perry and then Freeman Perry and Mercy Hazard.
Q: Wow. Look at all the these names. Names names names.
Z: Once we linked into that Perry line, this is research that’s been done. We didn’t do this. We linked into it.
Z: Then, let’s see, you have the Hazards. Freeman Perry marries Mercy Hazard so this is Mercy Hazard’s background. This is Freeman Perry’s.
Q: I think I’m going to include a pedigree chart in my book to show how much you can find about your family and different names. There’s always a small percentage of your blood that was their blood.
Z: And sometimes you don’t know why you do things a certain way and then you start to research. Sometimes a name will just strike out at you. Like you gave me the Bell name before. (“AND”) As you look through this, a name will strike you and you will want to research that name. Now here’s your Arnold line.
Q: Right. So is that true that we’re related to Benedict Arnold?
Z: Um-huh. (“YES”) Well, if in fact this link is true. That’s what you had on your charts so somebody in your family knows this to be true.
Q: So that is true.
Z: But we don’t know. I mean all that we know is family tradition says —
Q: Well, you never know anything for sure.
Z: That’s right. We can probably find this out. Does this link? Sardis isn’t documented anywhere except that we did find his name in the Ira, Vermont history. Then, we go back to England.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NAME: SOME OF THE NAMES CATCH MY EYE IN THIS CHART THAT WERE LATER REMOVED FROM THE CHART WHEN A LINK SEEMED ERRONEOUS.)
Q: Isn’t there a composer — Mark Isham?
Z: Is there?
Q: That new age composer.
Z: So we’re going back. So if he came off that line then that would (mean he could be related to you). Well, nobody knows things — (you find out) just as you go back.
Q: God, it goes back so far. Faith Thomas Hodsell. Faith Gtratwick. (“DID”)
Z: This is the mother of John and that’s his wife.
Q: So he married a woman who has the same first name — (“AS THE MOTHER”)
Z: As his mother.
Q: I get it. Oh my God. It goes back and back and back. How many generations back are we going? This is amazing. I’m shocked.
Z: Well, we’re back to 1593 here.
Q: You were able to go back to 1593?
Z: Well, keep in mind this is research that’s been done. (“WE’LL HAVE TO”)
Q: We’ll have to compare it with what Thaddeus has done.
Q: Because he did say that they traced it back to Scotland. Wow. Look at these names. This is unbelievable.
Z: Here’s your Arnold line going back. The way this works is this is an ending of each page and this is the beginning of each page.
Q: It’s the way you can get it on the page format.
Z: Number one is number twenty on page five. So you have to go back to page five to find Benedict Arnold and then carry his family line.
Q: It’s kind of like a Thomas Guide of the soul.
Z: It is exactly. (small laugh) That’s great. I love it. You writers have such a way with words.
Q: Eva Cominge. Margaret Arscote. There’s just so many different names.
Z: Isn’t this fun?
Q: This is interesting. I can go over this for hours probably and find things.
Z: Oh, yes.
Q: Young. These are all very common names. When I was an agent one of my clients was Alan Young who was in “Mr. Ed” which was a TV series about a talking horse.
Z: Oh, I remember that. Yeah.
Q: Chamberlin. Mickey Rooney’s wife, Jan — I think her maiden name was Chamberlin.
Z: There’s Richard Chamberlin. That’s the end of the pedigree.
Q: I love it.
Z: Then, this is the family group record. This is important for research purposes because it tells mother and father and children’s names. I still have one to add here, I think.
Q: I think so too.
Z: Okay, and we’ll find that.
Q: Unless — it might even be Thaddeus. You never know.
Z: (small laugh) It could be.
Q: I mean you begin to get sort of paranoid. I remember the film “Chinatown.”
Z: Oh yeah. Where the father —
Q: “My sister. My daughter.” It might be “My uncle. My brother.”
Z: (small laugh) (“COULD BE”)
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: I MAKE A SLAPPING SOUND BY CLAPPING MY HANDS.)
Q: This is fun.
Z: Let’s just go on.
Q: Now this is really interesting. Belle Russell. Even though it’s spelled Belle, there is a ‘Bell’ in my family tree. At least one.
Z: Now, I didn’t have a chance to take this out and rewrite it. James David Russell that was born in 1855 in England is not your James David Russell. He’s living in New York but he was born in Johnsburg, New York and the other one was born in England. I picked that Johnsburg up from the poem that was written.
Q: That poem probably has a lot of information in it but it’s sort of cryptic.
Z: It’s very cryptic. (small laugh) We were able to create this family for you and this matches the census records although these names aren’t quite in order. And Katie is not the wife. (“RIGHT”) We have yet to find the wife.
Q: Kate. Katie.
Z: That other family had a Belle but the other children didn’t match. (“WHAT”)
Q: What other —
Z: When you went to the library you found on the census on the soundex this big family. It had a Belle but the rest of the names that were on that list didn’t match your family.
Q: Isn’t that strange because I really felt when I found that, that it was what I was looking for.
(“ISN’T THAT AMAZING” “UM-HUH”)
Z: But it wasn’t.
Q: Isn’t that weird? Because how many Belles are there?
Z: That must have been a real popular name at that time. (“AT THE”) It just isn’t now, is it? Now Henry Olin had all kinds of variations — there was an Olden Russell in one and a Holden Russell.
Q: So you think there might have been a mistake or something?
Z: No, I just think (“UM-HUH”) that’s how the census people took the census. But you would never have found it. (“YOU DID”) We spent hours looking for him.
Q: Well, thank you. That’s what’s so great about having specialists do this because when I went to The Family History Center I went into computer shock. I mean there’s no other way of describing it. Okay, let’s see. (“WHERE IS IT”) It’s amazing. There’s just so much information here it will take me a while to digest.
Z: And these family group records I just put in now. I didn’t bind these because I’m not sure they’re your family yet. There’s Matthew G. Perry, who is (“UM-HUH”) the brother to Matthew C. Perry. And this was just to show you that although he was born in 1821 there’s no way that could be yours.
Q: And it’s Calbraith not Galbraith.
Z: Right. But he’s Galbraith.
Q: So this is the more likely one.
Z: Well, no. He has a brother, Matthew C. He isn’t — he can’t be because if you go to the next page they’re a whole family unit and there’s no room for your ancestor in that line. He’s not your line but his brother might be because there was no research done for his brother’s line. The Matthew C. Perry.
Q: By the way, “Chinatown” was a Paramount movie.
Z: Was it?
Q: I worked at Paramount.
Z: We went up to the power plant number one and the whole thing reminded me of “Chinatown.” Everything in there. There were pictures of Mulholland and whatever his name was and that whole thing is all — “Chinatown” was written all — (“I KNOW”) I think this is your ancestor because it said in your family research that he was a brother to Oliver Hazard Perry. And this is Oliver Hazard Perry the seaman. And then there’s Matthew Calbraith and then Matthew Galbraith. And so the Matthew C. — if this is your family tree, this is the link I put you into. And here’s Matthew G., the brother.
Q: I’m just amazed at how many collective names there are.
Z: It’s amazing. (“UM-HUH”) And then here’s Nathaniel Hazard. Hazard’s a family name.
Q: Champlin. I was just thinking of Charles Champlin of the Los Angeles Times. Andrew Jackson Champlin? Is that a relative?
Z: No. But people just did that. Like you’ll see a George W. — wherever you see a George W. nine times out of ten it’s George Washington.
Q: But what is this reference here to Jackson? I mean is this Andrew Jackson’s —
Z: Susan Alexander married —
Q: Is this like a relative of mine?
Z: No. It’s just that Susan Alexander married this person and this is her grandmother.
Q: I’m going to have to take a while in terms of really taking this all in because there’s just so much information.
Z: And here’s another Oliver Hazard Perry. This is a couple generations back. It’s doubtful that it’s that Oliver Hazard Perry. (“BUT THIS IS”)
Q: Right now we’re at 1733 so we’re going way back.
Z: Well, yeah, but in order for George Calbraith to be the grandfather, he would have had to get married at eighteen and had a child at nineteen. And the next generation would have had to done the same thing. (“RIGHT”)
Q: It would be more likely that it would be one of these back here. (“OH”) We’ll have to check the other family tree if Thaddeus would be so kind to send that and we’ll just see what matches up and what doesn’t.
Z: This is something I just pulled off. It really is the same thing as I didn’t know if I was going to have time to pull it off that.
Q: It’s probably a reference or something.
Z: This is just a reference for the same family. (“YEAH”) Actually it is that so we’ll just take that out. But here’s a fun thing to look at. This is called a descendancy chart and I took Eliakim Perry because this Perry and — well, there’s Azor and Eliakim and Seth. These brothers were in Ira, Vermont. Well, guess who comes to Ira, Vermont?
Z: Your Perry. Sardis. Sardis comes in to Ira, Vermont. He doesn’t stay there very long but he’s there for a while and he links up with these guys. So while I don’t know which Perry is your Perry line. (“YEAH”) I thought I would pull this descendancy chart off because this family also goes back to Benjamin Perry. And Benjamin Perry goes back from Matthew Calbraith. So while we don’t really have him linking in here I felt it was a good descendancy chart to pull because —
Q: The last names I see here are Harrington and Huntington.
Z: It’s the same guy. Probably. Born 1762. And their spouses are (“CHI CHI CHI”) Sarah Perry. The interesting thing about the ancestral file is that someone submitted Caleb Harrington in 1792 and somebody else submitted Caleb Huntington. On one person’s work, it’s listed as Huntington and somebody else’s work it’s listed as Harrington. Now if we cared about this and this was your direct line —
Q: But it’s not a direct line?
Z: It’s not.
Q: There’s no blood.
Z: Not from this guy. But if it were, then what we would do is we’d go to the researchers of each of these and say, “Hey, you guys, tell us which one it really is.” But that’s just not a priority. (“BUT”)
Q: So this is just the beginning. We still have some work to do obviously.
Z: But we’re not going to do it until we find out what’s already been done. And (“BECAUSE”) I don’t want to do that.
Q: Okay, well I’ll consider this the conclusion of the interview. Thank you.
( . . . )
Q: Additional information on Mc Elhatten.
Z: Chauncey Mc Elhatten was living on Elk Street. He was living in 1930 out on Elk Street in a duplex. He was living there with his daughters and his sons without his wife and there were like four other families living in a duplex in the same half side of the house. There were at least three other men listed as living there. They must’ve been living in a very tight quarters like a three or four bedroom — well, probably even a two bedroom house with, like, twelve people in it.
Q: That still goes on today.
Z: It says something about their class and their culture and it might say something about why Margaret may have had this child, Ellen King. His first wife was in a family of hotel-keepers. And so as we research this family more we might find that they were hotel-keepers of some sort. And although it says he’s a painter, they were seasonably employed. This John Mc Elhatten was also seasonably employed. Mary was a housekeeper. There was nothing special about this family line. We just don’t know anything about William King yet. I want to talk to your mom.
Q: At The Family History Center I saw there was a huge book on King — all devoted to King.
Z: Well, King is a very special family.
Z: Because there are early American settlers with that surname.
Q: And I guess it’s symbolic of Jesus Christ, king.
Z: King — yeah. So coming down to your Ellen King, it would really behoove us to talk to her to find out if she knows anything about this family.
Q: I don’t think (“OH”) she does.
Z: William King is a very common name. In fact, there were married men named William King in the community. It would be helpful to talk to descendants of Chauncey Mc Elhatten.
Q: I wonder if author Stephen King has ever done a chart of his family tree.
Z: That would be interesting. I don’t know.
Q: Did you ever read The Stand?
Z: But he’ll be someone to check out.
Q: I edited the press kit for “Pet Sematary.” The director and the unit publicist told me that when they were making that film there was a bigfoot that had been stalking the cast and crew.
Z: Oh really?
Q: That’s something that seems like it’s right out of a Stephen King novel.
Z: It sounds like it, huh? So that’s your mother’s line. Now John’s parents came from Ireland. We found that out. One of his parents came from Ireland. And so we don’t know Emma’s last name. So there’s some work that can be done there. So there — you have what we have.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THE NEXT RECORDED TELEPHONE CONVERSATION WAS WITH MY FATHER ON FRIDAY EVENING, NOVEMBER 3RD. IT HAS OFTEN TAKEN FROM FIFTEEN TO THIRTY MINUTES FOR ME TO REACH HIM AND SOMETIMES THEY CANNOT LOCATE HIM AFTER I HAVE WAITED THAT LONG. ON THIS OCCASION KARLA FIRST THOUGHT HE HAD GONE OUT TO DINNER, THEN NOTICED THAT HIS NAME WAS ON THE SIGN-IN LIST. THERE WAS CONFUSION BECAUSE THE RETIREMENT HOME HAS ANOTHER RESIDENT NAMED PAUL THAT I DIDN’T KNOW ABOUT AT THE TIME AND I LEARNED THAT MY FATHER IS KNOWN BY THE NAME OF ROY. KARLA ALSO SAID THERE WAS A NEW RESIDENT WHOSE FIRST NAME WAS RUSSELL, ADDING TO THE CONFUSION. AFTER ‘ROY’ WASN’T FOUND TO BE IN HIS ROOM KARLA CHECKED THE LIBRARY.)
Q: Oh, hi. Hello, Father.
P: Who’s this?
P: I was trying to write a letter but I didn’t get to it and (small laugh) let’s see. What was it I was just going to say? You know that sabbatical stuff — not that I’m against it but that’s supposed to be religious. Or A.A. But that’s alright. I’m glad you use the word because it’s a good word.
Q: By the way, I’d like to visit you in some time so once I finish my book I’ll call you to schedule a time. In fact, Ellen said she would like to visit you too.
P: Well, I wouldn’t do that —
Q: Not include her?
P: — over here, Mark. I’ll tell you why. Because I don’t know if I can do it in a letter. I didn’t even start the letter.
Q: Okay, well we’ll talk about it later.
P: Are you in a hurry?
Q: No, I’m not. You know, in terms of that sabbatical business you mentioned, this is kind of a research call for my book too.
P: It’s just a good word. I think you probably took a couple of trips and you’re just using the word.
Q: Well, I am doing research for my book.
P: You were doing some research on the trip?
Q: On what?
P: When you take a trip or something is it because of something you’re going to write?
Q: Exactly. Would you remember when I was a child and I had all those strange fainting spells?
P: No, I don’t.
Q: You didn’t know about that?
P: I probably did but I — if I saw them, you know, I wouldn’t quite — I’d have to think. It’s in the computer. Way in the back. But it won’t pop out. If I tried to think of it, it won’t pop out at all.
Q: Well, I have made progress on the book. It’s turning out to include many autobiographical details. One possibility was that when I was sexually abused as a child —
P: You weren’t.
Q: No, I know. But if I was —
P: If you were.
Q: Right. Exactly. A splinter of my personality might have broken off and in some way enabled me to become a channel for the Entity who calls Himself Michael.
P: I don’t — you’re way ahead of me and going too fast. And that’s okay. A channel? I had a kidney stone and the doctor said that it hurt me. The kidneys. I knew why then but I didn’t tell him. And he said, “Well, it’s in the channel. We got to take it out.” They took it out about ten years ago.
Q: Thank goodness.
P: Right after that, they could do it with a laser and they wouldn’t even have had to cut. And Medicare wouldn’t pay much. They pay a little.
Q: Well, anyway, there seems like there’s a definite connection that can be made between angels and poltergeists.
P: That’s okay, Mark, I don’t understand it, you know? I didn’t even like that “Poltergeist” (“BUT”) — the first one. Or “Poltergeist Two.” I don’t like “Rocky.”
Q: Well, you might like “The Entity” with Barbara Hershey.
P: I don’t know — I just know the old stars.
Q: You might check out that video some time because in that film the poltergeist has sex with Barbara Hershey.
P: I would understand it all because I’m a pretty good programmer. I’ve been programming here for six years.
Q: Anyway, I was able to get all your old letters from Ellen. I was a little sneaky in doing it.
P: Yeah, but did you read my letter where I mentioned our family had been traced back to Scotland? I mentioned it to you about that third letter in 1982.
Q: Yes, I think I did.
P: Why, I think you did. So I get credit for it.
Q: You sure do.
P: Don’t tell Bob.
Q: I won’t.
P: Don’t tell him nothing.
Q: Right. No, I will. But in 1983 you ended a letter saying, “Your boys are also mine and, metaphysically, God’s.”
P: I didn’t say that. Did I say that?
Q: Yeah. You did.
P: I don’t remember it. I didn’t do too much of that because all I did is just take you to Christian Science Church because that’s where Mom and your aunt twins go. And that’s the only thing I know about it and — other than that I —
Q: Was that the church at North Lake?
P: North Lake is the one you went to — you were going down there for a little group in the afternoon. That was before —
Q: Going down?
P: — before — yeah — you went down to Lake or North Lake. There’s a church there. I think it’s on the left. I never did go there. I — I wondered. You went over there two or three times with a group and you came home. You said, “I think I’m going to be a minister.”
Q: What group was that because I have no memory of that.
P: Well, you went to some church, didn’t you? Anyway, you went once or twice. You — maybe — you went with Mike. Maybe you just went down there and didn’t even go back two or three times.
Q: Was this vacation Bible school?
P: Well, it was a Methodist or —
P: It was a Methodist or a Baptist —
Q: Just like Grandpa.
P: He was a Baptist minister.
Q: What about the Methodist Trust Fund?
P: My father was a Methodist supervisor when he ran away from home with six kids. I was the oldest. Seven. The twins were the youngest. But that’s another story. The family is kind of rough.
Q: I sent a nice card to Grandpa, by the way.
Q: I sent a lovely card to Grandpa. A lovely good will card.
P: To Florida?
Q: Yeah. I spoke to Helen. A couple times.
P: To who?
P: I told you not to bother the old man.
Q: I’m not bothering him. I spoke to Helen.
P: Don’t worry about it, Mark.
Q: Okay, I won’t.
P: He’s a lost entity. If he hadn’t sent $25 per child, you wouldn’t be here.
Q: Okay. (laughs)
P: And I worked — sold magazines, newspapers and everything, giving most of it to my — and she didn’t really need it because prices were low in those days. (“HAVE FUN”) And then they started raising the prices and I go to work. And I needed a job. I go to work getting signatures for the food — the prices are too high. This is 1950 and $6.55 — and the guy says, “The prices aren’t high, man.”
Q: By the way —
P: Now look at them.
Q: — you didn’t get Ellen to have sex with you by giving her a Hershey bar, did you?
P: Get what?
Q: Giving my mom a Hershey bar to have sex with you?
P: Who said that?
Q: Laurie Anderson.
P: It’s one of her boyfriends that came in there. She kicked him out, though. I told you about the one that had the whiskey glass — the shot glass in the door? On Saturday morning I came over there and it was in the yard. The mess on the floor. It was put there probably by somebody she kicked out and he threw the stuff at the door. But that’s okay. That’s another thing. You’re getting into a lot of subjects here. (“SHHHHHH”) You’re going to have to specialize, Mark.
Q: What about Michael’s “first circus” and “the high balconies in the Sports Arena. And about Uncle Bob, before or since —”
P: Wait a minute. Wait a minute. What?
Q: “— long afternoon trip to his publishing offices.”
P: Start over.
Q: In one letter you mentioned Michael’s “first circus” and “the high balconies in the Sports Arena.”
P: So that was in — until you took — we went over there — both of us.
P: We sat way up high.
P: And my eyes were weak — I didn’t know — a little bit weak, but (“HIGH”) I don’t think we could see nothing.
Q: (laughs) And what about “Uncle Bob before or since long afternoon trip to his publishing offices, 1970.”
P: Bob’s publishing — oh, Sunday Mail?
Q: Well, it just was a very cryptic reference you made.
P: A cryptic reference of what?
Q: That you made to Uncle Bob on that “long afternoon trip to his publishing offices.”
P: Oh, we took — we went over there. He said, “Okay, boys, if ever you need anything, you contact me.” But he just completely disregarded me. He never should have called Mike at work. And he was supposed to do something for me. But this started a long time ago. And he’s just a good salesman and a con man. And he did everything for his kids. He started at the bottom. (“WELL SO DOES EVERYBODY”) I went to USC and took advertising. I should have started in an advertising agency but he started in the street.
Q: Did he ever get involved in porno?
P: I don’t think so.
Q: Ellen mentioned that, I think.
P: Well, she threw the book at him on the phone. And then he writes a letter to me and he said about this, “She’s running me down. I’m a crook with Sunday Mail.” And then he said, “Now they start in on me.” He went over the same old thing. The same old thing — all — I think back about it. Boy — must end. Pick yourself up and do this. You have to do this. You have to go to work at eight o’clock. You have to get — and all this stuff, see? Yeah. He means well but — he said to me, “Okay, I’m going to help you but I have to make sure that you need it.”
Q: Me or you? (“YOU TELL TELL TELL TELL”)
P: My money. My money. And a lot of little things that — don’t worry about it.
Q: Okay, I won’t. I just wanted to try to clear up —
P: What’s the title of the book?
Q: Testament. Because it’s my testament about a true poltergeist case.
P: I’m writing my last will and testament now. I’ve been writing it for two or three years.
Q: Oh really? Well, I guess this is comparable to that.
P: A testament sounds — I’ve got some other words for testament. And then your sabbatical’s good. You call it presearch.
P: Then you don’t have to research. You’re presearching. You don’t have to write nothing down — just remember it.
Q: Remember that Bell Witch I mentioned? That happens to be one of Michael’s aliases. It made me wonder about —
P: Is he in on this too?
Q: No, I mean Michael the Entity — you know, the poltergeist/angel.
P: Oh, I see. No. No. I don’t know. I don’t even know Susan B. Anthony. I don’t even know that other guy Anthony.
Q: Well, it made me wonder about that ‘Ma Bell’ pseudonym you once mentioned about Thaddeus in a 1984 letter.
P: That’s the one — yeah — I wish you would write him a letter. You can call information. I think it’s 50. When they answer “Manhattan” — that’s 212 — you say, “Address first please.”
Q: Helen gave me his address and I have his phone number.
P: Okay, well — I — yeah. Yeah. (laughs) Okay.
Q: But what did he write that was “now published in Brooklyn” in that letter?
P: What state is she in now? Did she leave Florida?
Q: You mean Thaddeus?
P: No, that’s a she — that’s a he.
Q: Helen’s in Florida. She’s in Winter Park.
P: I’m talking about Ellen.
Q: Oh, Ellen — no. She’s living out here in California.
P: Oh, out here. Oh great.
Q: She’d like to visit you.
P: Well, listen. That’s okay. I wouldn’t even let Bob come over here. And he’s the only one that can handle gangs.
Q: Would you let me?
P: Mark, you don’t want to come. I’ve got a letter and —
Q: I have an Entity that protects me.
P: — address. And he said to rewrite it. Aunt Esther will call you. And get your phone unlisted.
Q: Oh, I would love that.
P: Change the number and — and unlist it. No address.
Q: Wait. Now I’m getting confused.
P: You have a phone and it’s listed. I think. No address. Don’t even list the number.
P: Because that’s — well, you — never mind. It has nothing to do with you. Just Mike — ask Mike. He’ll tell you what.
Q: Michael? The Entity or Michael my brother?
P: He’s got his phone unlisted. I mean non-published.
Q: Well, mine’s unlisted too. But in a 1985 Christmas letter you asked Mike to “think about family and relatives you don’t know or saw as a child.” Who did you mean?
P: Well, we got a whole bunch of them now.
Q: It sure seems that way.
P: Everybody’s got three or four — what year?
P: To Mike?
P: Yeah. Did he ever get that $600 check?
Q: I have no idea.
P: Yeah. He’s sending it back.
P: Anyway. Family — took you out to Aunt Dorothy’s. And Clyde. They had a girl first. Then, they had a boy and a girl. And then Ellen had you. And then Esther had twin girls after a girl first. That was out in Palos Verdes. A little place out there. And we only went out twice.
Q: By the way, the reason why I called Thaddeus is because you wrote to me about his family tree that traced our ancestry back to Scotland.
P: You did write him?
Q: I called him.
P: Oh, you did call Thaddeus?
Q: I want to get a copy of the family tree.
P: You said you had a book from the library.
Q: I have that but I want to get in-between and apparently he has that.
P: Oh, he does. Well, sure, but —
Q: I left a message on his machine. He isn’t my half-brother, is he?
P: He’s my half-brother and he was nineteen — it was 1951 or ’52 or ’50. It could have been just before we were married. About a year before you were born. He came back from Korea. He had enlisted young — volunteered. He was over in Korea. And so he’s about fifty years old now or older.
Q: Well, that’s strange because on the family tree it makes him seem younger.
P: No, he’s my half-brother. I mean he’s a half-brother.
Q: Of who — of you or me?
P: He’s young. He’d be younger than the twins and that might be four or five years younger.
Q: But there is a big age discrepancy between his age and his brothers and sisters.
P: Well. The twins are what — he’s about fifty — over fifty years old now. And I told you wrong. I said, “stepbrother.” And I guessed his age at forty or something, but he was twenty in 1950. I mean eighteen.
Q: He has very young children. You can hear them on his answering machine.
Q: I could hear the voices of his kids on the answering machine and he has some
real young kids.
P: Is that right?
Q: I think so.
P: It could have been the TV or video or —
Q: Well, I have such a vivid imagination I was almost — did you ever see the movie “Chinatown”? Do you remember there was that scene where she goes —
P: Yeah. Vaguely I do.
Q: “She’s my daughter. My sister. My daughter. My sister.” I was thinking could this be “My brother. My nephew.” I mean I’m his nephew — oh, it’s too confusing.
P: Mark. (small laugh)
Q: (small laugh)
P: Pretty good, boy, (small laugh) but sometimes you can over-sell, you know?
Q: I know. It’s one of my fatal flaws.
P: Anyway, thanks for calling. I’ll try to —
Q: Wait. One more question.
P: I started your letter.
Q: Just one more question. About ‘Mr. Trust’ — our grandpa? Do you think he —
Q: Grandpa. Paul.
P: P. R. Senior?
Q: Yes. Do you think he profited in any clandestine way from that church trust fund?
P: (laughs) Who told you about the church trust — I did? Who told you about the church?
P: What church was it?
Q: The Methodist Church Trust Fund.
P: That’s right. I sent you some stuff on that, didn’t it?
Q: Uncle Bob did too.
P: When did he send that to you?
Q: Just recently.
P: I told you not to contact him again.
Q: This was before he gave me your number. He sent this on his own with the family tree information that had omissions.
P: Yeah? Well, he sent it to me too.
Q: Well, remember “the sins of the father”? This could be part of it — a sins of the father connection.
P: It’s the Park Place Methodist Church.
Q: Well, did he?
P: Of course not. They don’t have — oh, well, that’s a pretty big church, I guess, but it — it don’t matter, anyway.
Q: Well, he’s very rich, isn’t he?
P: He’s not rich. He’s probably got a little but he just had a small practice.
Q: He plays the stock market still.
P: Oh boy. Well — (small laugh) — I can see — I was trying to tell you a little something. I didn’t even think you got most of them.
Q: I got most of them. I don’t miss a thing, do I?
P: Not now. Um-uh. And anyway —
Q: And neither does Michael.
P: You better apply it to some better families. I got two or three suggestions. I don’t see how you can bring that in, but go ahead — finish the book and then start something good. (laughs)
Q: Okay, well, thank you for all your help.
P: But don’t worry about starting something’s that going to make money. Do something you like.
Q: I’m not going to make a dime off this book.
P: Money ain’t worth nothing.
Q: This isn’t —
P: Why not?
Q: Because the family who is also involved in the haunting are getting all the profits. I decided that I’m just going to get my expenses paid.
P: You see? You’re back to profits there, see?
P: You’re back to profits again.
Q: No, I’m not getting any profits. Because of my relationship with Michael the Entity I don’t feel like I need any. We’re, like, married.
P: Oh yeah? Well, first of all, you better change that first name.
Q: You mean Michael’s first name?
P: That’s right.
Q: Well, he has lots of names.
P: Well, use some of the others.
Q: What about Thaddeus? The last part of his name ends in D – E – U – S.
P: That’s an old name that was —
Q: But D – E – U – S means God.
P: That’s an old American and a European name or something.
Q: I think Michael was doing some mind control.
P: Maybe it’s Spanish too. Do what control?
Q: Mind control.
P: Over you?
Q: No. Over whoever gave birth to Thaddeus and named him that.
P: Which Michael? (“NO”)
Q: Michael the Entity/angel.
P: Ohh. Mark. Please. (small laugh)
Q: No, he works through people’s subconscious mind.
P: I can’t — I’ve got bad eyes. I can’t see what I’m thinking.
Q: He works through people’s subconscious minds. He communicates through my subconscious mind and through those of others. So, maybe, whoever gave birth to Thaddeus called him Thaddeus because —
P: What was your major? Psycho?
P: Psycho cinema. I thought so.
Q: Did you get that? Cin — S — I — N — ema. Sinema.
P: I know. I got a million of them. They’re all words.
Q: It runs in the family. Maybe I have a chemical imbalance. Have you ever had a chemical imbalance?
P: You’re going to have to start a new life. You’re going to have to change your wardrobe, make-up — you’re going to have to go somewhere and find something good to write about.
Q: Is this what a chemical imbalance feels like?
P: I don’t know. I don’t take medicine.
Q: Oh really? Because Bob once and Ellen said that you once had a chemical imbalance.
P: Yeah. He comes over here to kind of cover up for taking all the money. He’s trying to cover up — “Don’t you recognize you’re going after the doctors again? You’re always running at the doctors.” Oh boy.
Q: Well, as long as you have a good relationship with God, who cares? Right?
P: Which — God? Yeah, God. Um-huh.
Q: What about those bikers? Those Hell’s Angels bikers? What was that about? Was that some kind of purgatory?
P: I don’t — let me see — bikers? I don’t remember that.
Q: Have you ever been to purgatory?
P: Ohh. Huh? I don’t remember — you asked me that a few minutes ago.
Q: Have you ever had a purgatory-type situation?
P: Purgatory? I’m not Catholic.
Q: That has nothing to do with it.
Q: Have you ever been someplace where you felt everyone’s pushing your buttons in every different direction?
P: Everybody does — still gets that.
P: Especially when they’re younger.
Q: Well, I got mine just recently.
P: You get some money — you got to have a family to go with you but — don’t be a loner like me.
Q: I’m not because I have Michael in my life.
Q: The Entity is in my life.
P: What’s your brother doing?
Q: Oh, he’s having fun. He’s working late again tonight. He works late every night. He works with all the top people in Hollywood.
P: That’s great.
Q: They’re lucky to have him. I just hope he’s happy. I sure the hell wouldn’t be.
P: Yeah, well, he could’ve arranged to stay at Disney during the strike and then afterward. He doesn’t even need the union over there. If I were you I would get in with some of the people over there and see what’s going to go on over there at what-do-you-call it? What’s the name of their movie studio?
Q: Oh, you mean that new one with Katzenberg. DreamWorks?
P: They got two or three of them.
Q: You mean the DreamWorks team?
P: No. No.
Q: You mentioned them last time. (“NO”)
P: Their movies that they make. This Grand — Oh jeese, what’s the name of that?
Q: Are you sure you don’t want me to visit you some time?
P: Well, yeah, I’ll let you know — but not out here. I mean there’s nothing here.
Q: Okay, well, we could do it maybe in several weeks or something.
P: I don’t know. I’m pretty well off on the medical right now.
Q: I know but just to say hi.
P: I have a couple of more things to do and I should see the eye doctor though. I have a lot to do and paperwork. I’ve got my VA report to do.
Q: Uncle Bob has some medicine that helps people’s eyesight.
Q: Uncle Bob has made a discovery and he’s found these new secrets from Russia that improve people’s eyesight.
P: Well, I don’t need it. Who? I don’t need anything he needs. And there’s a lot of things on there you can’t even use. And Medicare won’t pay it.
Q: I just mentioned that because he sent me this information about Russian secrets or something.
P: Yeah. Well, just write him back and tell him about it and don’t call him.
Q: He’s not a very forthcoming gentleman, is he?
P: Well, it’s not that. It’s, see, his wife started out — so no one went to his wedding but me. And I was his best man. So she was running the twins down all the time but I didn’t go out there too much. Every time I saw him — but that’s the type of family she came from. Los Angeles. Downtown. Her father and mother ran a little bar — a little beer joint or something downtown. That’s the way they are and somehow I’m the only one that communicated out there. I went by and babysat. So when I needed a job or something, I came out or he came and got me. At Sunday Mail, he came and got me. And I was working for the Los Angeles Times again but it would’ve been better off if I hadn’t come. But then again I could have gotten in more trouble around L.A. It would’ve been worse no matter how you look at. It don’t matter. But just stay away from them.
Q: But he never abused me, did he? Sexually?
P: Stay away from them.
Q: Did he ever sexually abuse me? I just want to know.
P: He was not — I told you he was never around you. (“DID”)
Q: Yeah, but what about Red? You mentioned somebody by the name of Red?
P: That’s just one of the boyfriends down over there.
Q: Do you think he sexually abused me?
Q: Oh okay.
P: How could he?
Q: I don’t know.
P: You’d know it, wouldn’t you?
Q: No, it might —
P: You thought you were dreaming. You were a good sleeper. Because then I know why that happened.
Q: Well, now you’re bringing — now it’s coming back to me a bit.
P: I know why you were a good sleeper.
P: Mike used to sleep on his tummy. I told Ellen to keep turning him over.
Q: Oh. Well, thank you for that.
P: But I don’t know if she ever did.
Q: So you think I had nocturnal visits?
P: Nope. I just know — and I know why you were the first born.
P: I know why you were a good sleeper.
Q: Was that why?
P: It doesn’t matter. That’s — that’s good.
Q: I just want to know because of the case.
P: What case?
Q: You know — the poltergeist case.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THE MICROCASSETTE TAPE SIDE ENDS HERE SO I HURRIEDLY INSERTED A NEW ONE.)