I used to work at a public radio station that cycled through news directors the way most stations cycle through CDs. The looniest we ever had was a guy named Jim, who informed us his first day that he used to be in movies. "Neat!" we said, "Which ones?" He named off several we'd never heard of before finally telling us he had a bit part in the notorious "Ilsa: She-Wolf of the SS." "Oh, we've heard of that one," we said diplomatically, noting internally that he really had no movie career to speak of.

Still, Jim was an enthusiastic name-dropper. "I was at a party once, and I said to Arnold..." "Hey, I'll tell you what Julia told me about acting..." "So I was at this premiere, and this is what I said to Steven..." Of course, what we were all thinking (unfortunately, we were too damn polite to actually say it out loud) was "How does someone who had a bit part in a seedy, exploitative, S&M crapfest 30 years ago get into parties with Hollywood's A-list stars? Answer: He doesn't."

Of course, Jim also assumed that the rest of us knew nothing about the movies. "You've heard of Orson Welles, right?" he'd say, "He was a great director." Two rabid movie hounds, an unproduced screenwriter, and a half-dozen casual filmgoers in the office, and he tries to instruct us in the glories of "Citizen Kane." Another time, a bunch of us were riffing on Monty Python routines, when Jim walks by and says, "You know, Monty Python changed the face of comedy." Wow. Ya think? It's a wonder we ever survived without his keen insight.

But the capper came when Jim was talking about the never-to-be-produced talk show he wanted to host about film. "My first show," he'd brag, "I'll open the mike and say, 'There are two things that ruined Hollywood: sound and color.' Then I'll open the phone lines and let the callers speak." He finally pitched his idea to the station manager, who told him, "If you want to look like an ass, that's fine, but don't try to drag this station down to your level."

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