All ready for THE SUPER BOWL? No? Make sure you let everyone know by call it the Superb Owl, where they play Sportsball! People who enjoy football will be suitably chastened, and look down at the spilled dip on their lap, and rethink their choices.

Never understood why simple indifference isn’t enough for some. I mean, I have zero interest in basketball, and never feel the need to get on Twitter and say “why don’t they just play the last minute, it always comes down to that,” which is the sports-joke equivalent of wondering why they don’t make planes out of black-box material. The only acceptable situation for attempting to make fun of other people’s harmless pastimes is if you are standing on top of a castle, speaking in a French accent, and taunting King Arthur.

I will not be starting the game at noon, since I have to do an Orchestra Hall MC job Sunday afternoon. Column due Monday morn, too, so that means Saturday work. The weekend will be swift and merry, and we will head into February with a bounce in our step.

If it sounds like I had a good week and am buoyed with meaningless brio, I am. Grand day; productive as all get-out, whatever that means. The entire week was incredibly fruitful. Hey, but what about the Wednesday screeds? You ask. They return next week, with a new theme, but just as one-sided and self-important as ever. The highlight of the week may have been tonight, when Daughter wanted my help playing an online Jeopardy quiz; wife downstairs heard me shouting - Rushdie! Chaucer! Wagner! Marlowe! And she correctly deduced what was happening.

I don’t know how parents did it before. Today I was typing away upstairs and I heard Daughter’s voice downstairs, along with the tell-tale bird whistle and clacking sound that indicated she was throwing the dog a treat with the Furbo. It’s all I can do not to run down to the machine and stick my head in front of the camera and wave, which might ruin it if there were friends present.

To repeat: I avoided waving at the camera of the remote dog-treat dispenser when I knew Daughter in Boston had activated it to give the dog a little joy. When I was in college my parents just sat and waited and worried.

For good reason, too, and I say that as someone who paged through the last batch of old journals before they went to the fire. WHAT NO YOU BURNED YOUR JOURNALS THIS IS LIKE BYRON COMMANDING HIS LETTERS TO BE CONSUMED BY FIRE

Yes, it’s exactly like that. As I said before, they’re an embarrassment and contain absolutely no useful insight or information at all. The only interesting things are the pieces of paper I stuck in the pages.

Ah, Larry Bud:

This was worthy of a piece in the New York Times.

Ah, Larry King:

Why is she holding his hand? Don’t know. Maybe she was the wife of the month. It was an ad for his radio show, which was changing the landscape of late-night AM radio. I laid in bed in my room and listened to it, turned down low, in the dark. It was my favorite thing - and I got on two or three times, too. Man, that moment when your call gets a ring instead of a fast-busy - your heart jumps in your throat.

Anyway. I found my notes for my call to Larry King when I got through to Anthony Burgess, one of the highlights of life, and one of the most frustrating. I’ve mentioned this elsewhere, I think - King said “We go to Minneapolis,” and Burgess started asking questions about Minneapolis! Because he’d been there when he did a gig at the Guthrie! AND I WASN’T THE CALLER. The person before me was the caller.

It’s not on YouTube. I wonder where all those King shows are. Quite the source for understanding the times.

Talking to my editor about an upcoming architecture piece; she mentioned with rue the loss of a parking ramp by the government center, and I agreed: it was, for the genre, a fine example, interesting to look at it. Inasmuch as it was a parking ramp, anyway, and they always depress the streetscape. But it walled off the rest of downtown - visually, it said “it all ends here.” Beyond there was no retail, few office buildings of note, the great white carbuncle of the Metrodome, which only came to life a few times a month in the winter, and contained all the vitality of a game within its walls.

Now the area is different: housing, a park, new hotels in old buildings, and so on. The replacement for the parking ramp is lighter and more airy, and serves to open up the area beyond.

Like this.

The ground floor cuts in and steps back, implying there’s more beyond. Nice work.


From my vast collection of things with almost no monetary value whatsover, I bring you this week's entry.

  Again with the trains. Well, the Bani is a Romanian word that means . . . money. 100 Bani today equals one American quarter.

Don't worry, I said last week, they get more interesting.

I'm pretty darn sure of that.


This year it's Bela on the last Friday of the week. Rather then stretch them out over the course of the week, I'll dump them all here in one day. It's like Lance, without the mystery.


The suspense is murder, isn't it

Solution is here.






Remember her? Last week? One of her sidelines was radio jingles, a great art form familiar even to people who didn't hear them in their heyday.

The harmonies are the hallmark of the genre.



Did they speed this guy up like the KC & The Sunshine Band guitarist?



The guitar makes New Radar sounds



A lot of doo-doo for a bed; wonder if the board man had to pot it down fast and hard.



More to come - idents, jingles and the like will be the standing feature for the fourth week of the month.

I have this year down.


The banjo craze for the middlebrow middle-aged guys who really loved that stereo sound.

Gene Sheldon was an actor as well as a musician; he played "notorious alcoholic Puffo the Cowln in "Three Right Circus." As one does.





A frequently recorded song going back to 1927 - a reminder for those of us who get tired of hearing boomer music on the speakers at the grocery store all the time.

This was like that.





It's 1941; stands to reason you have a headache. Brother, everyone does.


And that brings us to the end of this technically-challenged week - Not that you may have noticed, but technically this week was a nightmare here, because I’ve been doing this on two computers. One has all the stuff and the layout programs. The other is the new one being loaded slowly with all the new programs. Nothing meshes. But now it’s over.

The week, I mean.



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