Friday, January 27, 2012

One Fine Day

“This broken wing will fly again
This blackbird’s mute gonna sing again
One fine day.”

John Shearer and I have similar musical tastes, so I always look forward to when he posts songs on Facebook. A recent one is Warren Zevon singing the Prince song “Raspberry Beret” on a 1990 Letterman show backed by members of REM calling themselves the Hindu Love Gods. John is also a big fan of Wilco and posted an animated cartoon video for “Dawned On Me” that has Jeff tweedy stealing Olive Oil from Popeye. Cracker remains John favorite band, and he posted a performance of David, Johnny, and the gang doing “One Fine Day” a couple days ago at Chicago Music Exchange.

“One Fine Day” is also the title of a 1963 hit by the Chiffons, written by Gerry Goffin and Carole King. It was a follow-up to the Chiffons’ “He’s So Fine,” the subject of a lawsuit against George Harrison for its similarity to “My Sweet Lord.” A judge ruled that Harrison was liable due to “subconscious plagiarism.”

Sarah McColly Wheeler must be out of the hospital because she posted photos of her beautiful newborn baby Liliya, 8.2 pounds, 19 inches, and with a 34.5 centimeter head. Toni picked up a baby present that I hope to give grandpa Fred next time he comes to the Archives. He’s been working five-day weeks lately.

Aaron “Beamer” Pickert joked: “So last night I get home and Kim tells me we are having Cornish gay men for dinner. I say, ‘Wonderful company, but what are we going to serve to eat?’” In parenthesis Beamer added: “We had Cornish game hens, and yes, I’m being silly.” I told beamer about Seven Wonders, one of my new favorites played at Halberstadt Game Weekend.

Mike Olszanski posted a photo of USW 6787 demonstrators posing next to “The Union Bus to Indy.” He added: “We’ll be back.” Exposing the hypocrisy of right-to-work legislation, Charles Halberstadt chimed in: “ A union saved my family. A union helped put food on my table. A union helped pay a mortgage. Now Governor Daniels and others (in the General Assembly) literally ignored the begs and pleas of workers as they voted to critically weaken unions in this state.”

Sometimes legislators reveal themselves to be pandering dimwits. Samuel A. Love reprinted a Times report about an Indiana Senate committee endorsing the teaching of creationism despite pleas from scientists and liberal religious spokesmen. Sam wrote: “Darwindamnit Indiana, what the natural selection is your problem?”

The Post-Trib’s Jerry Davich took heat from respondents for this joke about how tame “Old Man Winter” has been: “You ARE getting old if this is all you got this season. My shovel has cobwebs, my heavy coat is in the trunk, and my NIPSCO bill hasn’t cracked $150 yet. Come on. DO something!” Jerry’s reply to those who feared revenge from Mother Nature: “I am humbled yet baffled by everyone’s belief that I can somehow affect the weather by my Facebook posts.”

Tom Wade posted comedian Jon Stewart’s reaction to Governor Mitch Daniels’s doom and gloom “Mourning in America” response to Obamas’s state-of-the-union speech: “Either Daniels is from a psychotic, twisted, hellscape devoid of any joy or Oprah-like happiness or he is from Indiana.” Tom added: “Makes me proud to be a subpsychotic, supertwisted Hoosier.” Too bad we have such a subpar governor.

Son Dave reports that East Chicago Central grad E’Twaun Moore is getting more playing time with the Boston Celtics and scored 14 points recently. He, too, posts song videos, including a recent performance by Otis Redding.

“Death of a Good Officer,” a column in “Deadline Artists” by beloved Hoosier WW II war correspondent Ernie Pyle, is about a Captain Henry T. Waskow of Belton, Texas, whose body was brought from the Italian front lashed to the back of a mule, “lying belly-down, the head hanging down the left side, the stiffened legs sticking out awkwardly from the other side, bobbing up and down as the mule walked.” Several men knelt beside it and muttered expletives or in one case simply held the dead leader’s hand. Writing from a cowshed in January 1944, Pyle noted: “He was very young, only on his middle twenties, but he carried in him a sincerity and gentleness that made people want to be guided by him.”

Nick Mantis, who is doing a film documentary on write Jean Shepherd, dropped by the Archives. I gave him my Nineties Shavings, which contains numerous Shepherd witticisms and account of a hilarious luncheon talk he gave on the day in 1995 he received an honorary IU degree. Two years ago I brought the house down reading at the Miller beach Aquatorium reading excerpts from his Cedar Lake fishing tale, “Hairy Gertz and the Forty-Seven Crappies.” Even so, I wasn’t invited back the following year because some Millerites regard me as an outsider, having moved to Chesterton. Nick gave me permission to suggest him to Jeff Manes as a future SALT subject. Jeff liked the idea and quipped, “When he goes to church, he’s known as Praying Mantis ) I gotta million of them).”

After downing a double cheeseburger and value fries at McDonald’s for a total of $2.14, including tax, I saw “The Descendants.” George Clooney was great, as were Shailene Woodley and Amara Miller playing his sassy, somewhat out of control, previously neglected daughters. The story takes place on three Hawaiian islands, Oahu, Kauai, and the Big Island, and the scenery is spectacular. In one scene Clooney is driving from the airport and passes graffiti shaped by white coral rock on a lava rock background similar to what I witnessed last week. The Hawaiian songs that form the soundtrack, is also great. One song, “Paka Ua,” meaning raindrops, is by Ozzie Kotani and Daniel Ho (no relation to Don Ho of “Tiny Bubbles” fame).

In “Californication” Hank’s 12 year-old daughter Becca, whom he frequently fines when she curses, is in a rock band and in one episode ably performs “Surrender.” She has a crush on her guitar teacher and is jealous when her 16 year-old stepsister slut Mia bags him. Becca reminds me of my young granddaughters, older and wiser (in some respects) than their years but at the same time awfully vulnerable. One nice thing about Facebook: new photos of the grandkids appear aplenty almost daily.

I picked up Disturbed’s latest CD “The Lost Children” after hearing most cuts in Hawaii with my wingman Seattle Joe. It includes such ditties as “Hell,” “Monster,” “Sickened,” “Dehumanized,” “Midlife Crisis,” and ends with a rousing rendition of the Judas Priest standard “Living After Midnight” – a song also covered by The Donnas. Called Joe excited, and he remarked “Awesome” when I told him what I had on.

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