Goodbye, Bernie Brillstein

It was reported today that Hollywood heavyweight Bernie Brillstein passed away recently, of causes that I did not retain. I’m not sure of his exact age, but I do know he was pretty old.

Bernie, I didn’t know you, but I did know of you, sort of. When I saw the headline today saying you had died, I recognized your name. And it crossed my mind that perhaps I’d seen some of the movies, or maybe television shows, that you had directed, or had worked on, or were otherwise involved with. Or if you were involved with both movies and television, maybe I saw or read reviews of both your TV shows and movies.

If you did manage to work in both TV and movies, well, that’s great, and I hope you were proud! Lots of people don’t even get to work in one of those mediums, much less both. So if that’s the case, congratulations! And if not, well, maybe you turned one down to fully focus on the other and were totally happy with that decision. In either event, I hope whatever you did or didn’t do, that it was the right choice for you and that you were happy with it. And that if you weren’t happy with it, that you at least learned from it and that the trials and tribulations you may or may not have gone through made you stronger, if there were trials and tribulations.

You must have been an excellent producer, or terrific agent/cameraman, or even a superb accountant, for someone not in the industry such as myself to have recognized your name so quickly. My first thought was that perhaps someone on Salt on Wound would post their memories of you. Since this hasn’t happened, it’s been left to me, and I’m doing the best I can with that right now. It’s not all that easy, frankly, in a similar way as your life, which wasn’t at all easy either, perhaps. But I do hope that wherever you are, you’re looking down at this and are smiling and aren’t even the least bit insulted.

Now I’m thinking of Gilligan’s Island for some reason and am wondering if perhaps you were involved with that show in some way (sound engineer?). Honestly, Gilligan’s Island was pretty much the first specific show that came to mind when I read the news about you this morning. And suddenly much has become clear to me : Sherwood Schwartz worked on Gilligan’s Island, and you both have alliterative names, and I though of Salt in Wound when I heard your name because Sherwood Schwartz has been written up here. But maybe it’s more than that. Who can say? It’s a mystery. So’s life and death, by the way. So’s life and death. (Mysteries).

It’s odd, but I do believe that from this point forward I will think of you whenever Gilligan’s Island is brought up, and I do hope that you were involved on that show in some way, or at least that you were a fan, or at minimum you liked it OK so that it’s not insulting to your memory to associate you with Gilligan’s Island. I did like that show a lot as a child. I don’t know what I’d think of it now. But if I saw it now and didn’t like it, but you were involved with the show, you could have given me pointers on why it was funny! Too late for that now, though. And if you didn’t care for the show at all, let’s just assume that if I saw it now I’d hate it too, and no harm no foul, OK?

Goodbye, Bernie Brillstein. You were beloved by many people, or at least by a few people. Well, I sure hope you were, anyway. It sure would suck for you if you weren’t. Wow. I don’t want to even think about that. So let’s assume you were madly, truly, loved. Much better! At minimum, I’ll be thinking fondly of you.

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