Yesterday afternoon, I had the pleasure of meeting with Kurt Epps, who you all met here, at the Proprietary House in Perth Amboy, New Jersey. The award-winning writer, speaker, and historian was having a documentary filmed on him by a pair of students from Montclair State University, who were delving into the work Kurt does at the house, most importantly with his character, Royal Governor William Franklin. When the self-proclaimed “legend in his own mind” asked me to come along, I could not say no, and answered some questions that the two filmmakers had as well as sitting in on their interview.
There was also a gift I had been waiting to give Kurt since we both attended a dinner in November, and that is a Coors Lite bottle shaped like a Louisville Slugger baseball bat (pictured above). The Governor accepted it, and admitted he had never seen anything like it before, even though he had some choice words to say about Coors, a beer he would not be seen drinking even if there was a loaded gun to his head.
Being a blogger himself, Kurt was kind enough to give me a shout-out on his website, aptly named The Pub Scout. Below is an excerpt of what he wrote last night:
Admittedly, I’m no devotee of Coors Beer, and I confess I rarely follow professional baseball these days, but thanks to a friend named Greg Caggiano, I became an owner of some pretty neat memorabilia today. It’s that bottle in the shape of a Louisville Slugger in the pictures to the right of this blog. I was impressed by the detail of the wood-grain look, and even the number 18 on the bottle cap. In my youth, I recall that all the Louisville Sluggers I ever got my hands on had the bat size stamped on the bottom. This bottle bat has the number of ounces in the bottle in that hallowed spot.
Of course, back in the day, all bats were made out of wood and cost about $6. Today, they’re made of space age metal, can rocket a ball at you faster than a bullet from a .357 Magnum and cost as much as a ticket to a Yankee game.
I don’t know how much a collectors’ item like this is worth, nor do I care. There was no beer in the bottle (which may have actually increased its value to me). Still, it’s neat to have. Maybe the Mets should come up with something like this to keep their fans happy…
It was a great afternoon hanging out with Governor Franklin, as well as the film crew of Rob Dickerson and Matt Fabiano. They shot about fifteen minutes worth of an interview, but I managed to film a few minutes of it myself, with a sort of behind-the-scenes look. Enjoy this story Kurt tells about the house and how he first got involved with acting there:
The next time Kurt will be at the Proprietary House is June 12, when we reenact the arrest of William Franklin. All are invited to attend this free and lively event, where we get to see him in full form. Just don’t acknowledge the picture of George Washington hanging in the foyer, for it is highly insulting to his excellency.