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So who is the celebrity you most resemble?

So who is the celebrity you most resemble?

This question is a fun game that a couple of my favorite radio personalities play with people who call in to their show. But it also helped me frame the characters in the book as I wrote for them. So, here is a list of the primary characters and my mental image of each as I wrote them.

The Old Man. I describe him this way, “The Old Man is an undersized man, with petite, precise hands and a small head. His piercing eyes are a disturbing tone of gray that’s the color of a dead fish, and his hair is a shade of brown that resembles autumn’s last leaves. A few wisps of hair cling to his head like the remnants of last year’s lawn, manicured just before the first frost and left dormant ‘til spring. When he smiles, it’s as cold and slimy as a toad’s belly.” Do you remember the movie, the Green Mile? In it the character of Percy Wetmore played was by Doug Hutchison. This character was in my head when I wrote about the Old Man.

Major Eastman. I describe him as “another piece of work; a ridiculous yes-man whose only nutrition is coffee and cigarettes. His coarse, untrimmed hair has the same murky color and smell as wet dirt, and his shaggy eyebrows blend seamlessly into his bloodshot brown eyes. He pops his knees back and forth as he stands at the briefing board during the meeting, and his eyes are as restless as mosquitoes. Tall and rock-star thin, it’s like he has some internal motor making his legs twitch rhythmically.” I see him as Michael Richards, Kramer from Seinfeld

.

Colonel Ken Holland. Dennis Quaid, “With his rugged Steve Canyon good looks, a deep tan from months in the desert sun, and an immaculate uniform complete with all the right patches, he was an impressive sight—a poster child for colonels everywhere. I’ll bet that under his helmet he had just the right amount of gray hair.”

Finally – Slade himself. Slade is never described in the book. In my head, I had an image of Sam Rockwell as I wrote about Slade. Rockwell was also in the movie, the Green Mile.

Mike Smith
May 2010

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