Were you there?

Burning Chair 2021 


Told you she would win.

My top songs of 1973:

1. Killing Me Softly with His Song by Roberta Flack

2. Superstition by Stevie Wonder

3. Bad Bad Leroy Brown by Jim Croce

4. You’re So Vain by Carly Simon

5. Superfly by Curtis Mayfield

6. Frankenstein by Edgar Winter Group

7. Also Sprach Zarathustra (2001) by Deodato

8. Hocus Pocus by Focus

 Sunshine by Jonathan Edwards on Spotify

Sunshine go away today
I don't feel much like dancing
Some man's gone, he's tried to run my life
Don't know what he's asking
He tells me I'd better get in line
Can't hear what he's saying
When I grow up I'm going to make it mine
But these aren't dues I been paying
How much does it cost, I'll buy it
The time is all we've lost, I'll try it
But he can't even run his own life
I'll be damned if he'll run mine, Sunshine
Sunshine go away today
I don't feel much like dancing
Some man's gone he's tried to run my life
Don't know what he's asking
Working starts to make me wonder where
The fruits of what I do are going
He says in love and war all is fair
But he's got cards he ain't showing
How much does it cost, I'll buy it
The time is all we've lost, I'll try it
But he can't even run his own life
I'll be damned if he'll run mine, Sunshine
Sunshine come on back another day
I promise you I'll be singing
This old world, she's gonna turn around
Brand new bells'll be ringing


My top songs of 1972. What's the point, Roberta Flack's going to win. Spoiler alert, she's going to win in 1973 as well. Incredible combo of writing, production and performance. Sunshine was the dark horse in this race, nicely done, whoever you are.

Spotify Top 100
Challonge The Competition

1. The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face

2. Without You

3. Morning Has Broken

4. Sunshine

5. A Horse With No Name

6. Roundabout

7. Let’s Stay Together

8. Nights In White Satin

9. Saturday In The Park

10. The City Of New Orleans

11. Rocket Man

12. Layla



My top songs of 1971 if anyone cares. 

Marvin Gaye's What's Going On edged out Joy to the World (Three Dog Night) for the top spot. 

Wildcard (Jesus Christ Superstar) edged out the Doors for 10th place. Ouch. Maybe because Riders on the Storm isn't even the 10th best Doors song. 

I chose my songs on Spotify, Round Robin tournament on Challonge.

1. What’s Going On

2. Joy To The World

3. Ain’t No Sunshine

4. Me And Bobby Mcgee

5. Won’t Get Fooled Again

6. Feel The Earth Move

7. Proud Mary

8. Theme From Shaft

9. If You Could Read My Mind

10. Superstar

11. Riders On The Storm

12. I Hear You Knocking



 

My top songs of 1970, via callonge.com and spotify

I wasn't expecting James Taylor to win, but damn, dude. That's the most honest song. Ever.

Fire and Rain stole the top spot from legend B.B. King's the Thrill is Gone, which is technically a cover, but doesn't take away from the majesty.

Simon and Garfunkel had two top 12 hits, as did Creedence Clearwater Revival.

1. Fire and Rain

2. The Thrill is gone

3. Evil Ways

4. Cecilia

5. Lola

6. Lookin out my back door

7. Bridge over troubled water

8. In the Summertime

9. Instant karma

10. Make it with you

11. Who’ll stop the rain

12. Spill the wine


It's really annoying when people ask me what my top 5, top ten, #1, whatever is. 

I have succumbed to these social mores with the caveat: I reserve the right to change rankings at any time.

Favorite actor: Alan Rickman. No wait. Philip Seymour Hoffman. Do they have to be living or is that a separate list? Is Donald Sutherland underrated or is he accurately rated?

Photo credit: an insane co-worker


 -1990-

Notable pop songs, from the legendary to the cringeworthy

Best: SinĂ©ad O’Connor singing Prince’s Nothing Compares 2 U

Worst: Hold On, Wilson Phillips



[my pathetic attempt at tasting and understanding wine]

Bogle Vineyards
2018
Old Wine Zinfandel

First, Zinfandel is the wine that made California California.

Second, wine scientists only recently figured out that the Zinfandel grape came from Croatia.

This Zin did not wow me. It's supple, soft tannins, dark and full of body, but not a lot going on. So, it's doable, comfortable and safe. I would not drink it the first day, more flavors come out as it is exposed to oxygen. Or, I have no palate. Makes a very nice purple paint.

1990 Billboard Top 100

Billboard Top 100 - 1990 list

1990 is a year when the reign of schlock-pop terror (Wilson Phillips, Michael Bolton) was briefly interrupted by fun, light hip-hop newcomers such as Bell Biv DeVoe (#4), Black Box (#81) and Kyper (#100).


Janet Jackson edged out perennial favorites Taylor Dayne and Phil Collins with 5 top-100 hits. 


-imho-


Best song of 1990 imho: Nothing Compares 2 U (#3) 


Worst song:

Hold On (#1) 


Fairly awful:

Unskinny Bop (#32)


notable/notorious:

Ice Ice Baby (#45)  and its natural frenemie, U Can’t Touch This (#55) 


We Didn't Start the Fire (#35)


The Humpty Dance (#62)


Milli Vanilli Blame It on the Rain


Mariah Carey’s debut, Vision of Love

San Jose Haiku #3

Highway Eighty-five


Why are you going forty-


five in the fast lane

Komponist von tag

Richard Strauss

1864–1949

Late Romantic, early Modern era. Hol' up–this guy lived through WWII. 
I messed up. I thought the real Strauss was Richard Strauss. Apparently I was thinking of Johann Straus II.

brb


https://www.etsy.com/listing/127697004/tom-waits-as-a-donkey-watercolor?gpla=1&gao=1&&utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=shopping_us_c-art_and_collectibles-collectibles-figurines&utm_custom1=_k_CjwKCAjwgOGCBhAlEiwA7FUXkhzVX2btveZu1bIUvf4fYIIXzqEGCy5Qc2Ho5LvZStcfzIDYNQmD-hoCIXEQAvD_BwE_k_&utm_content=go_304499675_22746182675_78727418195_pla-106550407235_c__127697004_12768591&utm_custom2=304499675&gclid=CjwKCAjwgOGCBhAlEiwA7FUXkhzVX2btveZu1bIUvf4fYIIXzqEGCy5Qc2Ho5LvZStcfzIDYNQmD-hoCIXEQAvD_BwE

TIL some parents make their kids try food 10 times before deciding if they like it or not. Seems like a good approach to trying anything new. Like wine. Opera. Vegemite. Art. A weird movie. Music. That includes new music. What else?

(art by sleepybowie)

San Jose Haiku #2

Highway 101

Get me to San Francisco 

And back before bed


Grape du jour

Table grapes from Chile. In February. Add those to the long list of things you can’t get without fossil fuels. Bananas are on your list already, right?



Composer du jour
Hector Berlioz

1803-1869, Fronce

Father of the Psychedelic Symphony:


I need to listen to him more, the psychedelic aspect has not hit me yet. Romantic period.

Vinework


 


Composer du jour

Schubert

1797–1829, Austria

One of the early Romantic composers. The Father of Emo, but perhaps I've said too much.

He wrote hundreds of works before his death at age 31, especially his 600+ lieds, (poetic songs). Hailed as a genius by  Antonio Salieri, Schubert's work is built on the Classical styles of Mozart and Beethoven, his musical idols. He asked to be, and is buried next to Beethoven in Schubert Park, Vienna.

Next to whom would you prefer to be buried?

Winterreise, sung by Joyce DiDonato


March 1 2021

Remember the stories about senior citizens who were still leasing AT&T landline phones into the 1990s? 

Apparently, some people still pay for cable tv.

AARP Streaming Event March 29, 2021

Live without cable - services for seniors

Brookdale - TV Streaming Simplified




Composer du jour

Haydn

1732-1809. Classical period. 

“Father of the Symphony” and “Father of the String Quartet” 

You can hear a little bit of Mozart in Haydn's work - or technically, you can hear a lot of Haydn in Mozart.

Haydn mentored both Mozart and Beethoven. Not too shabby. Spotify: Symphony #104

Bird du jour

2014 Rigotti David A RANS S-65, ROTAX 912ULS Series 4 Cycle, 100 horsepower 

Owner: Coyote Valley Sport Flyers, Los Gatos, California 





Grape du jour: Pinot Noir

Did you know that Pinot Noir is one of the grapes used to make Champagne? Who knew?

Outlier 2014 Monterey County Pinot Noir

$12.99 at Target





Most-improved Country of the Year

The Economist’s choice for Most-improved Country of 2020 is (drumroll) Malawi! Here’s why.

In the past eight years, Malawi:

  • Had a president’s death covered up (they said he was just sick)
  • Had a president (the deceased’s brother) win a rigged an election via Liquid Paper
  • Had his win affirmed by foreign election observers
  • Had judges offered exorbitant bribes to remain silent; but did not take them and ultimately, in 2020:
  • Held a fair election and elected an aptly-named new president, Lazarus Chakwera!
Fingers crossed for the new president in 2021.

Cardone Recipe

Cardone 

Cardone is basically an Italian artichoke. Cut up in celery-stick sizes, boil for 20 minutes, run cool water over them, dip in egg wash, roll in breadcrumbs. Spritz with olive oil and bake for 20-30 minutes, until lightly browned. 




San Jose Haiku #1

Give me number nine
no pickles and no peppers
just the sandwich please

I wish I could get as excited about life as people get excited about noodles.

Stay home

Sometimes people do what feels right instead of doing what’s right. The best way to thank essential workers is to stay home.

Dr. Cronenberg

Moved to a new town, so (as one does) I got online to find a new psychiatrist. After spending entirely too much time sifting through profiles, Dr. Cronenberg rose to the top with this one-star review:
“At best pompous, at worst incompetent and narcissistic” 
Boom. This is my guy. 
I arrive early for my 7:00 p.m. with Dr. Cronenberg. In the waiting room, across from me is a mother-on-her-phone and her grade-school-age son. He looks at his homework, then when she hangs up, he asks, “What do the Marines do?” 
Valid question.
She says, “They’re kinda like the Army, but, like, really, really good.” Her phone rings, she answers and I go off on her. In my head.
One. You don’t know anything about the armed services. Two. The answer is “They get rides from the Navy.” Also acceptable, “I don’t know.”
I feel bad for the kid. He got a bum deal. Dragged to his sister’s appointment, then treated by his mom as a nuisance. The doctor asks mom into his office, so the kid is left alone in the waiting room. 
With me.
I want to whisper a joke to him, but I do not. He doesn’t seem interested in me. 
At all.
His sister’s appointment ends and Dr. Cronenberg calls me in. While rubbing his eyebrows, he mumbles, “Some people just don’t get that I’m not a therapist.” I’m a bit relieved. Two decades into this diagnosis. Just want a refill on my meds and be on my way. The doctor is-—I’m going with—mid-sixties and seems to be eking out the last days of his career.
I sit down. He sits, yawns, pauses, looks around and sighs. He restarts his rant on the perils of being a psychiatrist. It’s like when someone is mowing their lawn and they stop. Then they start again. Red tape, licensing boards, ridiculous requirements from the state, etc. I settle in, listen, nod, agree. I guess I’m his therapist now. It’s fine. I’m used to it. I have a face that makes people want to tell me their problems.
This is a five-hundred dollar appointment. If I leave now, I can schedule an appointment with someone else. Do I have five hundred dollars? I don’t know.
“Which pharmacy do you use?” he asks. I respond. He replies, “Oh—that’s the only one that won’t accept prescriptions from me, due to the fact that I’m not certified with the state.” 
Or something like that. 
“If you want, though, you could be my test case and see if it works.” He looks exhausted and tired. He leans back, looks to the ceiling, rubs his eyes and leans forward with his elbows on the desk. 
He’s going to pass out.
“I haven’t eaten all day.” he admits. He swivels around and calls out to his receptionist, “Could you get me a burger or something?” She hurries out and returns with a bag of fast food. After taking a big, sloppy bite of his gigantic burger, he starts picking out strips of bacon from his mouth. Looking at the rest of the bacon-double-chee, he remarks, “She doesn’t know I’m Jewish. 
Even I know that the cheese/meat combo is a sin. Bacon on its own, well, that’s a downright cardinal sin. 
He’s amused by her fast-food faux-pas. He looks downtrodden by the burger. He sighs. Turns his head to me. “She’s new.” 
He is the character I imagined from that one-star review. I’ll bet that Dr. Cronenberg goes through receptionists like Spinal Tap goes through drummers. 
It’s now an hour-and-a-half since my appointment should have started. I haven’t said anything. Inside, I’ve got a big grin on my face.
This is great.

pete townshendoodle


Stop wasting my time

“How many how many of you have…?” The most annoying thing a speaker can do is poll the audience. “Does anybody want to guess…?” Just get to the point. Stop wasting my time.

On Spotify, control and creativity


1981. Called the local radio station to request Urgent by Foreigner. When it hit the airwaves, I did a cartwheel to celebrate my newfound power (I was twelve).
2011. Tried out Pandora. It presumed that because I listen to Peter Gabriel, I might want to hear from a lesser-known artist named Phil Fucking Collins.
Delete App.
When I first used Spotify, it didn’t even have Peter Gabriel. It did, however, allow me to make a playlist of every album recorded by Fleetwood Mac, chronologically. (You really need to hear the first one.) When I make my own playlist, I’m creating. I’m grabbing colors from my palette and making something new. Now, I’m the DJ. I find Billboard’s Hot 100 for every year and play each song, in order, every day. I scrounge around looking for the first rock ‘n’ roll song. (No two agree on this, but now I have a playlist of contenders.)
Spotify still tries to show me things I might like. The best of these is Discover Weekly. It takes the tracks I’ve played, throws them into a blender and makes me a playlist. 90% of the songs are spot-on. The others are based on songs I was playing for other people. If I play the worst songs of all time as a joke, Spotify’s algorithms only know what I played, not why I played them. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.
Are the other “Made for You” lists really made for me? 
Clicked on Daily Wellness. First track: Here’s your Daily Wellness….” Second track: “Welcome to your Tuesday Wind Down…we can slow down the incessant need to go off on wild adventures….”
They did it. Spotify hit a trifecta of things I hate: redundancy, pointless narrators, and someone telling me to wind down. I’m pro-yoga, meditation, all that stuff. It’s just that when I do yoga, I call it stretching and I listen to TOOL.
Author’s note: By 2019, both Peter Gabriel and TOOL were added to Spotify.

Phil F. Collins

Back Door Roth

If you google Back Door Roth and the link is to Urban Dictionary, don't click it.