Retired WCCO-TV sports guy R.J. Fritz brought something ancient to Tuesday’s annual “Old Timers” gathering at the Local.
Fritz brought retired sports photographer Larry Kohout a camera that Fritz’s son found stored at R.J.’s home.
“My son found it in the attic, and it’s what Larry used to shoot,” said Fritz, mostly a Florida resident, although he’s building another home in Wisconsin to be near the grandkids.
A label on the camera said it belonged to Kohout, who was grinning like a kid on Christmas morning as he held the relic, which weighed at least 12 pounds. It’s something you’d see in a broadcasting museum.
I thought the camera looked about 50 years old, but Fritz said, “maybe more than that. In the 1970s, Kathy Whitworth is playing the Patty Berg golf tournament and she is standing over the winning putt. It’s all quiet as can be. And then all of a sudden all you can hear is this …”
Kohout turned on the old camera and it started making the distinctive clicking noises of film churning through it.
“She steps away from the putt,” said Fritz. “She said, ‘I’m not putting until you turn that thing off.’ She won more golf tournaments than any man or woman on the pro tour,” said Fritz. “She won 88 tournaments, not majors.”
I shot video of Kohout grinning from ear to ear as Fritz talked about the camera with the multiple lenses that give it the look of a monster.
Lynn Remington, former assistant to various ’CCO GMs, was at the party, as well as these ex-newsroom habitués: Ed Heil, Scott Libin, Nancy Nelson, Marcia Fluer, Kevyn Burger and Dave Nimmer.
There seemed to be consensus that Nelson looked better than anybody in the room. The Infomercial Queen, widow of Bill Carlson and broadcaster in her own right, must be a moisturizing queen, too.
Nimmer was in the company of his companion of 30 years, Cindy Lamont, who said the secret is not to get married.
Lamont and Fluer were sitting on the stairs and ready to go when I arrived. They dispatched me to tell Nimmer, who — and this is my observation — never seems to tire of talking, that they were ready to leave.
I reminisced with Fluer about the time I took her to a party as my talent. I’d been invited to a tony Minnetonka party with some tennis-playing pals with whom I had lost contact. Guests were required to display a talent. I took Marcia, who knocked ’em dead by singing a song to a piano accompaniment.
Burger was walking with a limp. She joked that’s she was trying to get my attention and that her plan worked.
She had another funny line about how it was likely that I would hear that her mother was at the party. Get it? We’re starting to look old and therefore, being mistaken for our parents.
Lordz Uv rocks downtown party
Lordz did Morris Hayes ham it up, Oscar-style, over goodies from Lindstrom Bakery after he got offstage Tuesday.
The keyboardist and New Power Generation alum’s new EDM act is Lordz Uv. Hayes performed with keyboardist David Alexander and, to my everlasting delight, Timotha Lanae. The singer is now dividing her time between Minneapolis and LA. I’d written about her but never seen the tiny powerhouse perform. WOW.
“Oh, Jesus, help my soul,” Hayes enthused after looking into the bakery bag. “Thank you. Thank everybody! I’d like to thank the academy,” said Hayes, raising the lemon Bismarck above his head like a trophy, and “all the little people who made it possible. This [is] the first meal today.”
The baked goods were provided to Hayes by Jill Willis, Prince’s former manager and PR executive. My scheduled Tuesday lunch with Willis was hijacked by an emergency drive to Lindstrom to see Gus Gulbranson at Northwest Camera Repair. I don’t go to Lindstrom without dropping by Lindstrom Bakery to get confections prepared by owner Bernie Coulombe.
Willis, now a California resident, invited me to hear Hayes perform at a party for the LA-based Mixed Roots Foundation. The foundation, supporting the adoption and foster care communities, had its event on the rooftop of Seven in Minneapolis. The foundation also raised its profile at other events here.
Rob Brzezinski, Vikings executive veep of football operations and father of adopted children, was at the Seven event. A woman who said she worked for Prince for many years was giving me a compliment when she became distracted by Brzezinski’s good looks. She was sure he was a TV anchor. I told her she had probably seen him on TV, although he kept downplaying the possibility that he looked familiar.
Paris Bennett arrived fashionably late for the party and missed a top notch performance from Lordz Uv, who mixed in a few Prince songs. Bennett, who hung around and mingled, got the business from Seven owner Alexus Koch for her tardiness.
C.J. can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and seen on FOX 9’s “Jason Show” and “Buzz.” E-mailers, please state a subject; “Hello” does not count. Attachments are not opened.