' ' Cinema Romantico: One Man's Journey to Prefontaine-Land

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

One Man's Journey to Prefontaine-Land

So my pilgrimmage to the filming sites of "Without Limits" has concluded. Yes, there were many other happenings during my journey - like an Elizabethan production of "Our Town" outdoors (on a 30 degree night, a fact which I rather enjoyed) in Ashland, Oregon and a brief stop in Mount Shasta, California, the setting of one of the very first screenplays I ever authored about a rash of drive-by coconutings, and an inadvertent visit to one of the "deadliest beaches in California" (don't ask) - and, yes, I failed in my quest to re-enact the scene in Eugene, Oregon outside McArthur Court on the university campus when Billy Crudup says to Monica Potter, "Do you know where McArthur Court is?" and she looks back toward it, right behind her, and subtly raises her eyes at it because 1.) I wasn't driving a convertible and 2.) There were no Monica Potter look-alikes (and my sister wanted absolutely nothing to do with any re-enactments), but all that matters not.

I have set foot on historic Hayward Field, the same track where Pre himself used to win just about every race he ever started. And, let me tell you, I'd never been on an Olympic-quality track (and it is Olympic-quality, considering the U.S. Olympic Track & Field Trials were contested there just a few months ago) and, man, it was like walking on a fricking cloud. It wasn't just a far cry but a far shrieking holler from the cinder Waukee High School used to pass off as a track.

I have visited Pre's Rock, the site of the terrible car crash that took America's greatest long distance runner's life much, much, much too soon.

So, you're thinking, where's this cinema-obsessed idiot going next? Well, maybe nowhere movie-related. How about that? I mean, come on, what do you think I did this morning? Googled filming locations for "Atonement"? C'mon, that's just crazy talk.

Historic Hayward Field.

The Hayward Field track, up close and personal.

The memorial to Pre outside Hayward Field.

Oops! How did this get in here?! Anyway, it's the view from my hotel patio in California. Every morning of every day of everyone's life should begin with coffee while looking at the Pacific.

Pre's Rock. If you look closely you will see an old race number emblazoned with the words Quad City Times. It's nice to think someone else from Iowa made the pilgrimmage (unless they were from Moline, I guess, or Rock Island, but I don't think so). Sorry, but we won't discuss what I left.


Sabina's hat said...

That picture is in the evening.

Just sayin'.

Nick Prigge said...

You're correct. I forgot to take a cellphone picture of the view in the morning. Perhaps what I should have said was every evening of every day of everyone's life should begin with a beer while looking at the Pacific. Either way....

Anonymous said...

If you go to the Atonement sites within the next year or maybe 15 months, please stop by Bristol and say hello. I'm moving there next week. Thank you.