Wednesday, December 29, 2010

THURSDAY---Another Edition of.............

A flip of the fedora to Jimmy Cannon 

 For those who do not know the name---a sportswriter for the NY Post---when it was a newspaper & not the dead fish wrapper that it is today---columnists like him---Max Lerner, Frank Kingdom, James Wechsler, Earl Wilson, Leonard Lyons, etc; were published unlike what the paper has become---NewsCorp is now working on turning the WSJ into the same ---SO---the unfortunate thing in the end is---I suppose---the greed by Dorothy Schiff (NYPost) and the family that owned WSJ for selling to money hungry right wing Cretans.

1)      Year end surely needs some Best of” or “Most memorable”—so here are some in no particular order:     
a.      Another wonderful year of music and commentary on
TRADITIONS (and sharing this mutual interest w/ Ron Olesko) and SUNDAY SIMCHA.
b.      Meeting and “discovering” people and music that I had never expected to find or meet.
c.       Still appreciating the only station that I know of that allows the freedom of choice and commentary that we all have---WFDU and the 2 folks who create a family like atmosphere. 
d.      My raise this year at WFDU---from $0   to $00---hey---not everyone gets another 0 added.  Do they?
e.      Realizing that I am happy with some older technology that is only a   few years old---stop the world I am getting off.  (OK---I did not invent that)
f.        The loss of some people of talent and substance some young and some fully lived:
                                                              i.      Kate McGarrigle
                                                            ii.      Tuli Kupferberg
                                                          iii.      Irwin Silber
                                                          iv.      Susan Reed
                                                            v.      Richard Holbrooke
                                                          vi.      Jerry Bock
                                                        vii.      Lynn Redgrave
                                                      viii.      Jimmy Dean
                                                          ix.      Ted Sorenson
                                                            x.      Les Paul
                                                          xi.      Fess Parker

                                                        xii.      And, of course, as always,  the famous many others.

2)      The blizzard was a few days ago and the boroughs (outside of Manhattan---I hate calling them Outer Boroughs) can wait until hell freezes over (it did) for snow clearance.  Shades of days of yore---the difference---Mayor Lindsay was highly criticized and the Imperial Highness  Bloomberg fields questions with proper pronouncements of the “situation”---one that had better technology and forecasting than the unfortunate—and much maligned Lindsay.   Yet---Manhattan, as always, was prioritized.   Draw conclusions if you will===they cost nothing.  Living in Manhattan does.

3)      Do you think now---in hindsight---that making NYC a unity of the 5 boroughs was a good idea?   Would Bklyn and Bronx and Staten Island---even Queens--- fared better?   Outer Boroughs---the expression alone tells a story.  Shades of Tom Wolf---Center of the Universe.

4)      May I suggest a subscription and a donation to TDF (theater development fund)---they truly do make tickets to overpriced Broadway (and other) venues affordable and accessible.

5)      A laugh a day will keep you in better stead than an apple a day---the doctor never gave a damn for the apple if you believe that old tale and it did not keep him away since he never made house calls to you---only you.  Marx Bros. films, Family Guy, Married, With Children, and such---can truly do a better job in “keeping the doctor away”.  Feel free to pick others---these work for me.  After that you can make an appointment with the MDs automated voice mail---good luck.  Stick with me on this!

6)      Getting into and out of “The Center of The Universe” becomes more expensive tomorrow—for a change.

7)      In 1960 did anyone contemplate the possibility of a $25,000 house (which was $5,000 20 years earlier) being $500,000 today? My old RE prof. did---probably talked of it while I slept through the course.  He had a great quote---“buy in 1960 dollars and sell in 1999 dollars”—OK—randomly selected years.   I believe he stated that through my nap.

8)      Does anyone wonder how many people line-up to view the apartments that sell for over 5 Million Dollars (advertised each Sunday in the NY Times Magazine)?   Probably people who know the street will be plowed and the limo will get through.  Which brings us to the question of ---3 classes in NYC---Upper, Middle, and Lower---how did we get rid of Middle?   OH---gone to Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx, and suburbs where their commuting costs can eat up any savings.  An essay on that subject could well be forthcoming by popular demand---by the entire crowd in the phone booth requesting such.  Seriously—one should write a PhD thesis on this subject.

9)      Strange how things work out----Jane Jacobs beat Robert Moses in his attempt to “ruin” Manhattan but the net result was its out-of reach real estate for the average person and not the thing she envisioned.  Perhaps that is why she ended up in Canada.

10)  A New Year is coming and a time to hope for the best and to reminisce about our past year(s)----for me---I would rather look ahead.  The past is history (there is a cliche of the many I can use) and some of it seems from another life. 


Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Year End of Traditions

The Snow is Falling---the Wind is Howling and if I were Cole Porter I would write a song and make a fortune.  I am not he so I will just add a few thoughts to the wonderful show that my co-host Ron Olesko put together after I called him and told him of my storm dilemma.  I thank him (who lives closer) to trekking in and doing our joint annual program (and ---as on the other posting---no joints were involved===hey---repeat a joke if you think of it--they all do.

Ron has been doing this program for some  30 years now---I would have said 30 odd years but some were not really odd--and for the past 17 years we have always done a year end show together---we missed this one but Ron tried to cover for us both.  My thanks===may I say--Mille Grazie (just love saying that) to him and also to the great 3 hours he created for us all.  I was, like you, and entranced audience member.

The one thing that was not covered and we would have done that was a remembrance of people we lost this year---and may I add at this point we lost Phil Ochs years back but on Dec. 19 would have  been is 70th Birthday---John Lennon was a tragic loss--Kate Wolf was a tragic loss---Harry Chapin was a tragic loss---all at young ages and, surely, we commemorate the past and the present losses.  It is the nature of things---of, perhaps, the cycle of life,  It can sometimes be tragic and sometimes full and fruitful.  It always ends.

So to memorialize--in this new era of electronic possibilities a few videos of  people I would like to remember (Kate McGarrigle can be seen on the Playlist page and in wonderful remembrance in the NY Times Magazine of 12/26/10):

Susan Reed passed away this past year and while this video shows her in a younger day I knew her as a charming person of talent in Nyack, NY who ran a wonderful crafts shop and appeared in local concerts with such luminaries as Pete Seeger. Her history is quite interesting and worthy of investigation

The next piece is about the late Irwin Silber---the founder of Sing Out magazine (publication) and a wonderful piece of documentary and history---he passed on this year and his achievements and history should be remembered---

Let us now go back to the one person that you may all well recall and who is also posted on the Playlist page---Kate McGarrigle---