"Thank God for film archivist Dennis Nyback. If not for his encyclopedic knowledge of rare films and his tenacity for acquiring them, we would never have the privilege to view some astounding works of cinema." Kim Morgan


Dennis Nyback takes his films around the world. Find out how to book a show, what programs are available, how to arrange for custom programming, and just about anything you would like to know about Dennis Nyback.

Cardamon Donuts

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Bing Crosby in The Big Broadcast (1932)

In my haste  the previous evening to depart the Effect of Dada And Surrealism screening and get to the Sauna Party I left my top coat and hat in the office up stairs above the Tullikamarinaukio theater.  At a reasonable hour the next morning the phone in my room rang.  It was reception downstairs saying my coat  and hat had been delivered.  What a well run festival this is!  After breakfast I spent the rest of morning working on yesterday’s report which I posted at 11:20.  Ten minutes later I was at Plevna where I did a radio interview.  The nice young fellow had been to the Dada screening so everything was to the point.  I am not sure if I mentioned that at the screening there was a sound problem at the beginning.  In fact at first there was no sound.  I did my best to fill in  the lost soundtrack to The Big Broadcast which included singing the Bing Crosby and Kate Smith parts. They found the sound after that and I was able to get to the party.   In the interview the young man asked me to again sing the Bing Crosby part.  Well, you do what you can do when publicity calls.

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Pyynikki Observation Tower  Tampere, Finland

After the interview it was a short walk to the staging area at the Vaino Linna Square for the day’s outing.  The internationals guests, which included me, traveled in two vans to the 1929 Observation tower.   I wonder what it is about observation towers and Finns?  There is another excellent observation tower in Astoria, Oregon, which has always had a large Finnish population.

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The Astoria Column

The Tampere Observation Tower looks down on not just the city but also the Pyhajarvi and Nasijarvi lakes.  We all trooped up the stairs to the top where we found abundant views and fresh air.  Also sideways  snow.  It was very invigorating.  I needed some invigorating after the gala events of the previous evening. Another thing I left out of yesterdays report was that after the Sauna Party we went to a taven for more revelry, not the best idea all things considered.

At the Tower cafe we had refreshments.  I had hot chocolate.  We all had donuts, of which the cafe is famous for.  The donuts were flavored with cardamon. I am sure they don’t offer that flavor at Voodoo Donuts.

Back at the hotel I took a nap and didn’t get up again until 5:00pm.  My plan was to do research to improve my talk before The Age of Oil and then get dinner at 6:00.   As usual the research took longer than I figured.  Oh, have I mentioned that all my Google search answers here are in Finnish?  Yes, Google watches out for you when you travel to make sure you know where you are.  I have to say that Yahoo search, which has answers more grounded in my reality, is not as good as Google.  By the time I was ready to leave my only option for dining was the Italian restaurant in the hotel.  I expected to find it near empty like so many hotel dining rooms in the USA seem to be. Nope, it was full up and I was turned away.  I got to the screening an hour early.  There they told me about the Festival party at City Hall.  That was just a short walk across the river.

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I don’t think the current situation here is optimum for appreciating the beauty of Tampere.  It must be beautiful in the spring.  It must be beautiful covered with fresh snow.  Right now the roads are all clear and dirty snow is left in the undisturbed areas.  I was still impressed with the beauty of the main town square and City Hall.  When I got to the party all the wine had  been drunk and there wasn’t much left of the food.  I put mixed nuts in my pocket for later.  Walking back across the bridge I was impressed with the  four giant statues of athletic men that guard the portals.  They might have been an inspiration to Tom of Finland.

It was another nice crowd for my show.  I gave the introduction and then went out looking for dinner.  I went back to the Italian restaurant in the hotel.  Any place that packed ought to be good.  I was seated and given a menu.  Since I had been living on breakfast, sandwiches, and beer, for the last two days, I decided to get the full meal special.  It would take the rest of my meal vouchers, which I was sure would be worth it.  It would be tomato soup, roast pork, risotto, and chocolate cake for dessert.  After the soup portion I waited.  Then I waited and waited.  After what I considered a more than reasonable to wait I tried to catch the eye of a waitress.  A half hour later I did.  I asked if my order had been lost.  Apparently it had been.  The roast pork soon arrived and was excellent.  It was also on the house.  it was too late for the cake.

I went back to the Tullikamarinaukio theater to watch William S. Burroughs A Man Within.  I enjoyed what I saw but then realized I had little interest in the subject. I realize this marks me as a near Philistine, but I would probably more enjoy a documentary about Edgar Rice Burroughs than William S. Burroughs.

I had been told there would be some sort of party starting at 10:00.  I went out and asked about it.  It wouldn’t start until after the screening.   Things couldn’t be more clearer.  It was time to go to the hotel and get some rest and prepare for another busy day.  The outing tomorrow was to be taken to a contemporary Indian art exhibition and then for a walk on the ice of lake Nasijarvi.

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2 responses to “Cardamon Donuts”

  1. Tinky says:

    I would LOVE to hear you do Kate Smith!

  2. Javiera says:

    Quite fascinating to read about our Tampere and the festival (we here call them “filkkarit”) from your point of view.
    If possible, I love Tampere even more now 😀

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