THE ICING ON THE GRAVY

THE ICING ON THE GRAVY

"It was a time when originality wasn't just tolerated, it was expected," says Buffy Sainte-Marie in the new documentary Saint Misbehavin': The Wavy Gravy Movie. The folksinger is referring to early '60s Greenwich Village, when a typical atypical coffeehouse bill featured ukulele strummer Tiny Tim, blind street musician Moondog and "stand-up tongue dancer" Hugh Romney, aka Wavy Gravy. Like many of his peers, the latter mad hatter's Beat perspective evolved and he woke up one day to find the media had dubbed him something called a "hippie." In his "energetic progress toward the good," Wavy traveled the earth with the Hog Farm commune, dispensing medicine, food and fun. He later co-founded Camp Winnarainbow, teaching circus skills to underprivileged kids, and the Seva Foundation, which has performed more than 2 million Third World sight-saving operations. (Now that's hip.) He's also a clown and a wounded veteran of the antiwar movement, and was the maitre d' at Woodstock ("Breakfast in bed for 400,000!"). Director Michelle Esrick has created a portrait as loving as the man himself. For its L.A. run (March 11-17), she'll host three screenings, capped by a Q&A with Wavy and wife Jahanara Romney, and bestow the Wavy Gravy Basic Human Needs Award on a local do-gooder.
Fri., March 11, 7:40 p.m.; Sat., March 12, 7:40 p.m.; Sun., March 13, 3:10 p.m., 2011