"We, the people, declare today that the most evident of truths – that all of us are created equal – is the star that guides us still; just as it guided our forebears through Seneca Falls, and Selma, and Stonewall; just as it guided all those men and women, sung and unsung, who left footprints along this great Mall, to hear a preacher say that we cannot walk alone; to hear a King proclaim that our individual freedom is inextricably bound to the freedom of every soul on Earth,” Barack Obama
Jerry Davich had told me I’d be on his Friday Lakeshore Radio show for 10 or 15 minutes, but he kept me the entire hour. After talking about Tuskegee Airman Quentin Smith and negative images that Hoosiers downstate and Chicagoans have about the Calumet “Region Rats,” he ended the show by asking if I were a football fan and what my prognostications for Sunday were. I successfully predicted wins by San Francisco and Baltimore, setting up an all-Harbaugh Superbowl since Jim and John Harbaugh are the two teams’ head coaches.
In “Silver Linings Playbook,” up for several Oscars, Jennifer Lawrence demonstrates her versatility as troubled Tiffany, whose husband died fixing a flat tire on the side of an expressway. Robert De Niro, the father of Tiffany’s love interest, is an Eagles football fanatic. The action takes place in 2008, De Sean Jackson’s rookie season, and De Niro brings up his spiking the ball on the one-yard line, nullifying a sure touchdown. Also mentioned are Phillies wins against Tampa Bay during their Championship season.
Saturday before bridge with the Hagelbergs we dined at 444 Grill in Miller, which specializes in Caribbean cuisine. Arriving at 5:15, we were the only customers except for two Rastafarians at the bar. At first things looked bleak, as they were not serving most of the menu entrees because the cook had not yet arrived, but waitress Vickie was great, the wine palatable, and my jerk chicken salad excellent. On the wall were pictures of Marcus Garvey, Bob Marley, and other Caribbean heroes.
Jennifer Lawrence was SNL’s guest hostess and in one clever skit played “Hunger Games” heroine Katniss. She also was Danielle, a sensuous French woman, Madeleine, whose horny husband was away fighting in the Civil War and wanted a tit photo of her, and, best of all, the Elf Queen in a skit making fun of the protracted number of “Hobbit” movies.
In the Sunday Post-Trib Jerry Davich summarized the 2012 Northwest Indiana Quality of Life Indicators Report. Trends includes a sharp increase in Blacks and Latinos living in Porter County, the aging populace, and more elderly residents living by themselves. Patti McLaughlin, 58 and divorced, told Jerry that living alone has its perks but that she sometimes misses her husband, kids and grandkids even though she talks with them nearly every day and does have a dog.
Sunday Tom and Dave arrived at the condo for gaming and the IU contest against Northwestern. My only win was in St. Petersburg, which came down to whether an orange trading card turned up in the final round. Dave would have won if none were aristocrat upgrades. After IU beat Northwestern, we watched the 49ers edge the Falcons.
Obama’s second Inaugural took place, fittingly, on Martin Luther King Day. The President spoke about the need for gun controls, immigration, reform, gay rights, and ending roadblocks preventing citizens from voting. Anne Balay wrote, “From Seneca Falls to Selma to Stonewall, THAT”S my President.” Ray Smock concluded that the speech “reinvigorated liberalism.” He added: “Beyonce (escorted by Jay-Z) sang the very difficult Star Spangled Banner better than just about anyone I have ever heard. Her face is the future face of America. It is the face of America now. Brown and beautiful.” Turns out Beyonce was lip syncing, but it still was her voice.
Monday I got a haircut in Portage from Anna, who probably spent more time shedding hair from my neck, ears, and eyebrows than the top of my head. As always she did great. The cost was $12, and I left a three-dollar tip. Toni thought it should have been five. Next time maybe.
Scott Fulk wants Bill Pelke to be the Soup and Substance speaker on February 27. Bill will be in the area then, so it looks like a go.
Tony Rose, whose show called “Real Country” follows Davich’s Monday program, informed me that Gregg Kovach, WVLP’s station manager, wants me to host a regular show. Wow! That might be a little much, but for starters I might put together a special on Vivian Carter and Vee-Jay Records. Tony promised to help and suggested that Larry Ventura, who WGVE, the Gary Career Center station, for many years, could co-host. In the 1970s Tony worked summers at U.S. Steel doing routine maintenance. He wore an orange helmet with white stripes down the middle that identified him as a temporary college guy. Regarding my comments about the Region’s ethnic diversity, he added: “Coming from an Italian American home, I had friends who were Czech, Slovak, Polish, Mexican, Puerto Rican, Greek, Macedonian, Russian, etc. Even when I was a teacher, the names on my roster looked like an Ellis Island log.”
I checked out the HBO movie “Hemingway and Gellhorn, in which Nicole Kidman war correspondent Martha Gellhorn, the inspiration for the heroine of “For Whom the Bell Tolls” and Hemingway’s third wife but divorced him in 1945 and resented being thought of as a footnote in someone else’s life. In fact, of the two, she was the far superior journalist. She continued working well into her eighties, covering the U.S. invasion of Panama in 1989. At age 89, nearly blind, she committed suicide. Kidman does an excellent job and looks remarkably like photos of the real Gellhorn.
The Bulls beat the Lakers Monday, with “Captain” Kirk Hinrich outplaying former MVP Steve Nash, Dwight Howard appearing to be hurt, and Kobe Bryant looking past his prime.