A fine old commercial building is getting rehabbed. I hope the white terracotta facade gets blasted as well. Those views will be fantastic - until they build another structure on the parking lot next door.

A high school friend wrote to say he'd be in town. Great! We'll meet up on Friday. He texted he was staying in a hotel downtown that had free parking for guests; I could park there, and we'd go somewhere. But: lo & behold it's the one whose lot I walk through daily on the way to the office. I said I'd find a car with his state's plates and key it to let him know I'd been by.

He texted that it was a rental, sorry. He gave the make and model.

Curses, foiled again, etc. Well, the next day I was walking through the lot, and saw what looked to be the car. Took a picture with it: Venmo me $50 and I won't key it.

Didn't send it, though; could be another car. Hours later I'm walking back to my car, through the lot, and the same small black car is entering the lot. I think: that's his rental. A hand swings out and points at me. And there we are, after . . . ten years, I think.

I've walked through this lot daily for years now, and never met anyone I knew. The day I pick out one car as the temporary possession of a high school friend, I see him. I don't suppose this is odd or strange, but so many details went into that chance meeting. If I'd left my office when the parking meter alert went off, as I always do, I'd have missed him. If he'd been stuck at a light a half hour before, I'd have missed him.

It will be good to catch up. He was in Speech & Debate, a jock, and a big fan of heavy metal and funk. Brothers Johnson, Ohio Players. (SAY WHAT).

Ended up as a college professor teaching jazz in Texas, which none of us had on our bingo cards at the time. Of course, bingo consists of numbers and letters, so that's really not surprising at all.

 

Music stuff now, but it's just quick excerpts, if you like.

Vangelis died a week or so ago. If I can be honest, and of course there’s nothing stopping me except for a sense of propriety and the haunting fear that I’m just fantastically wrong, I don’t think Vangelis was that good, on the whole. We all love "Chariots," but I always got the sense that his simplicity was not a matter of boiling things down, but a lack of ability to compound and extend.

There’s nothing wrong with that.

I bought one of his early albums a long time ago, and was underwhelmed. It was Heaven and Hell. The first few minutes sum up everything that made me fidget and wonder if this was going to be different.

Tell me if this grabs you.

Jarre, I think, was better. He lets things develop. And I think his pseudo-theremin has more human emotion than Vangelis’ massed choirs bellowing out phonemes.

Difference between the French and the Greeks, perhaps. It all sounds simple today, but believe me: it sounded simple then. It was the newness of it, and the lack of traditional instrumentation.

I mention this because Vangelis wrote one of my favorite pieces of music. What? How can that be? Because there was an intersection between his style, my tastes, and a particular moment in life.

There’s nothing there that wasn’t in the rest of his work, but that one hits me like nothing else he did. Everyone has an artist in their collection like that, no?

 

The Firehouse block shows no sign of work on the housing portion, but the firehouse portion is finished outside. This I like:

Not enough copper downtown anymore.

Let's head over across the plaza on a lovely June afternoon:

And from there to the Commons Park, to the skyway level, to get a look at the new tower going up by the stadium.

We're going to have a good view.

 

Wouldn't be Friday without him, would it?

Okay. BONDY?

Solution is here.

 

 

The last of the Amazing Mr. Malone clips, with the self-referential genre spoofing at the end. The amateur sleuth and the "Inspector" - a Lieutenant here, but they were all cut from the same rough cloth - sum up the mystery.

   
 
   

It wasn't a bad show. It didn't last long.

This year we're counting down the top hits . . . of 1922. Why not?

Marion Harris again:

Marion Harris (born Mary Ellen Harrison; April 4, 1896 – April 23, 1944) was an American popular singer who was most successful in the late 1910s and the 1920s. She was the first widely known white singer to sing jazz and blues songs.

You can hear the mimicry from the opening bars.

   
 
   

Died in a hotel fire.

 

Sears, 1979. I love to eat, which certainly sets me apart as a unique individual, but I always have to wait for the stove to heat up!

   
 
   

 

 

   

 
   

The summer begins! Hope it's long and warm. See you Monday.

 

 

 

 
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