Sunday, April 13, 2014

jackpot

I've talked a bunch about my songs. Here is a "video" of "Jackpot." I put thwe word video in quotes because it's not a true video.

video

Saturday, April 12, 2014

a correction to "be al"

In my last post, I goofed when I wrote out the lyrics to "Be Al."

There was a third verse:
I live my life, don't ask me why.
I'm one handsome hunk of guy.
I'm a legend. I'm a rave.
Even if I need a shave.
Be Al! Be Al!

There was an alternate version that never made it to recording:
I live my life like Candid Camera.I'm the guy who turned down Temra.I'm a legend. I'm a rave.Even if I need a shave.Be Al! Be Al!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

old mix disc titles

I was recently cleaning out my office at work, and came across a bag full of mix discs I made years ago. That was back when I had embraced Minidiscs as a recordable technology. I loved them, but obviously they never took hold in the US. Anyway, these discs were lovingly recorded and anal-retentively labelled. This series had names that were simply cultural references that I liked. That's as opposed to prior series that had one key word in each title. For example, the "Cheesedip" series had titles that were popular phrases but in which one word was replaced by "Cheesedip." For example, E Pluribus Cheesedip. The "Peabo" series was similar, but had titles such as A Man, A Plan, A Canal, Peabo. You get the idea.

Anyway, I was amused enough by these titles that I decided to list them here, with an explication of where the title came from. These are listed in alphabetical order. Unless I goofed.

All the Good Times in a Pocketful of IOUs
From the Wreckless Eric song, "Take the Cash (K.A.S.H.)"

But there's only good in leaving with a suitcase full of loot
'Cos where's all the good times in a pocketful of IOUs?
Arriving Back at Where She's Coming From
A line from the Wreckless Eric song, "Hit and Miss Judy"
Goin' round in circles
Arriving back at where she's coming from
Life for Miss Judy surely can't be any fun..
Beacons of Absurdity
I have no idea



Come in Space Monkey
From the Julie Brown song, "Earth Girls Are Easy:"
Come in, space monkey!
Kiss me here, kiss me there!
He still looked disgusting
But I didn't care.
Darwin vs. the 1941 St. Louis Browns
I have no idea

 
Depending on the Zero Tolerance Factor
I have no idea.

Fighting for a Window Seat on the Road to Hell
I have no idea



The Ghosts of These Western Lands
From the Beat Farmers song, "Hollywood Hills"

The ghosts of these Western lands
Are gonna rise up against English sands

A Half-Eaten Pizza and Three Catatonic Scuzzos on the Couch
I think this from an article in The Onion. But I'm not sure.

Here Is One Dollar for the Post Stamp Cost
From a book I have somewhere of crackpot-type letters. A guy wrote to the American Nazi Party asking about joining. His humor was in sounding stupid -- using horrific grammar and other devices. The last line of his letter, written to explain that he was enclosing a dollar to cover return postage, read "And here is one dollar for the post stamp cost."

Darwin vs. the 1941 St. Louis Browns
I have no idea



Herman was Healthy but Herman is Dead
From the Christine Lavin song, "Cold Pizza for Breakfast." The Herman in question was Herman Tarnower. Look it up on Wikipedia.
Herman was healthy. But Herman is dead.
Pizza surely didn't do him in.
Jean Harris is behind bars feeling quite sad and thin
Do you see what I'm getting at?
You tend to kill when you're  skinny but not when you're fat

I Pulled Your Name Out of My Rolodex
From the "Weird Al" Yankovic song, "One More Minute:"
So I pulled your name out of my rolodex
And I tore all your pictures in two
And I burned down the malt shop where we used to go
Just because it reminds me of you.

I Remember One Night the Kid Cut Off his Right Arm
From the Nick Lowe song, "So It Goes"
I remember one night the kid cut of his right arm
In a bid to save a bit of power. 

If You Break My Arm I'll Join the Union
From the Mickey Jupp song, "You'll Never Get Me Up (In One of Those):"
I'd rather work in the city
In a pinstripe suit and bowler hat.
If you break my arm I'll join the union.
You know how I feel about that.

It Comes Springing from My Lips
This is part of the patter at the end of the Monkees' song, "Gonna Buy Me a Dog"

It Took Me a Fortnight to Remove the Thistles
I know that this is either the punchline to a joke or the prototypical (but not an actual) punchline.

It's Fatal and It Don't Get Better
From the Graham Parker song, "Mercury Poisoning:"
I've got mercury poisoning
It's fatal and it don't get better 
A Jew Who Doesn't Even Like Funerals
At some point my wife was asked to accompany one of her friends to a family funeral. Some time later he got a very angry letter from his cousin who berated him for a variety of offenses including coming to the funeral with "a jew who doesn't even like funerals."

K and Other Letters
I have no idea where this title came from.

Knocking Me Out with those American Thighs
A line from from the AC/DC Classic, "You Shook Me All Night Long."
She had the sightless eyes
Telling me no lies
Knocking me out with those American thighs

Lessons in probability Density
I assume this was from a probability textbook. But I have no idea which one.

Life Was Never Like Iowa Could have Been
I have no idea 


My Best Friend Debbie Was Homecoming Queen
From the Julie Brown song, "Homecoming Queen's Got a Gun"

It was homecoming night at my high school.
Everyone was there. It was totally cool.
I was real excited. I almost wet my jeans
'Cos my best friend Debbie was homecoming Queen

No Special Parking Permits Available for Aunt GriseldaThis was from one of those crackpot letters books. I forget which one. But the author wrote a letter to Clint Eastwood, who was then mayor of Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA. He asked for an autographed photo and a special parking permit for Aunt Griselda who would be visiting the town. He explained that Aunt Griselda was getting old and might forget about parking rules, and the thought of Clint Eastwood enforcing the laws might give her a heart attack. Or something like that. Clint wrote back. He sent the autographed photo, but wrote "No Special Parking Permits Available for Aunt Griselda.

The Odyssey That is Spiro Agnew
I have no idea

Once You're Up to Foursies You're in the Zone
From a Calvin and Hobbes comic.

  
The One in the Middle Looks Like Willie Nelson
The punch line to a dirty joke.  I'm not going to repeat the joke in a family blog, so Google it if you really want to know. Oh, what the heck. You talked me into it. A woman goes to a tattoo parlor and says that she wants tattoos of her two favorite country singers on the insides of her thighs. She wants Johnny Cash on one thigh and Hank Williams on the other. So the tattoo artist gets to work. Oh, did I mention that she's drunk and not wearing panties? Well, we can't leave that part out, because it's kind of necessary. Pretend that you didn't already read the punchline. So the tattoo artist finishes the job, but he was kind of distracted because he had her naked crotch staring him in the face, so he didn't do as good a job as usual. The customer picks up a mirror and looks, and immediately gets angry. They don't look like Johnny Cash and Hank Williams, she says. And she doesn't think she should have to pay. He insists it's fine and she should pay. So they're at an impasse. But they agree on a solution. They'll find a random stranger to look at the tattoos. If he can't tell who they're supposed to be then she gets them free. If he can tell, then she pays double. So they find a stranger on the street and bring him in. She hikes up her skirt and spreads her legs and asks the stranger if he can tell who's in the pictures. The stranger takes a minute, then finally says, "Well, I don't know about the ones on the sides. But the one in the middle looks like Willie Nelson.

One Part All-American Horndog
I'm not sure, but I think this was from a Jim Anchower column in The Onion.

Onion Fields Within Saskatchewan
I have no idea

 
Passersby Were Amazed by the Unusually Large Amou8nts of Blood
From The Onion. When there was a print edition, they used to fill space with what looked like text from an article. But it was simply this phrase repeated over and over.

Relative Groups and Their Topological Invariance
I'm pretty sure that I took this from a topology textbook. Or maybe it was an algebra textbook. Probably algebraic topology.

Which reminds me of a joke: How do you tell whether a mathematician is an analyst, an algebraist or a topologist? If he's an analyst, he begins his proofs with "Let epsilon greater than zero be given." If he's an algebraist, he begins his proofs with "Suppose not." If he's a topologist he begins his proofs with "Nothing up my sleeve."

Robots Aren't Supposed to Be Furry
I think this is froma Calvin & Hobbes strip, but I'm not sure.

She's Got a Boyfriend Who Thinks He's Jonathan Bimbleby
From the Wreckless Eric Song, "Sarah." Of course, I got the name wrong.
She's got a boyfriend who thinks he's Jonathan Dimbleby
He's obsessed with his career in TV.
Some Schmucko DH-Liver Doing the Wave Upside My Face
From a satiric column Desmond Devlin (yes, the Desmond Devlin. I was friends with him in college. You can all express awe and envy now) wrote for his college newspaper, parodying the writing that appeared in the paper. To illustrate the self-absorbed style, he wrote the line "I can't tell you how many double plays I've missed because of some schmucko DH-lover doing the wave upside my face."


Sometimes My Clothes Are Crunchy
I want to say that this is from a Calvin & Hobbes comic strip. But I'm not sure. 

Somewhere Over Blighted Loves There Hangs a Heavy Pall
The second-to-last line of Casey's Revenge," which was written as kind of a sequel to "Casey at the Bat." The last verse goes:
Oh, somewhere in this favored land dark clouds may hide the sun
And somewhere bands no longer play and children have no fun.
And somewhere over blighted loves there hangs a heavy pall.
But Mudville hearts are happy now, for Casey hit the ball.

A Straggling Few Got Up to Go in Deep Despair
Most of the first line of the second verse of Casey at the Bat. The verse goes:
A straggling few got up to go in deep despair. The rest
Clung to that hope which springs eternal in the human breast.
They thought, if only Casey could but get a whack at that.
We'd put up even money now with Casey at the bat.
The Suffocating Historical Dominance of Conservative Utility
I have no idea.

Suggestions for Service Improvement
I have no idea.

A Ten Pound Parakeet Named Mr. Whiskers
I have no idea.

That Sums It Up in One Big Lump
From the Charlie Manson Song, "Garbage Dump: 
Garbage dump, garbage dump
Why are you called the garbage dump?
Garbage dump, garbage dump
That sums it up in one big lump.
The Thick Fog of Human Incompetence
I have no idea.
 
Too Passionate to Bathe
I wouldn't swear to it, but I think this is from a Calvin and Hobbes strip.

Traffic Patterns of the Soul
I have no idea 

Trickle Down Pyrotechnics
I have no idea

Twelve Cents Worth of Lumber
I Have No Idea



Watch Me Run Just Like a Reptile
This is from a song called "Be Al" that some friends and I recorded at the Queens College radio station almost thirty years ago. It was about a guy named Al, and some of his foibles. If I remember correctly, the lyrics were as follows:
Hey hey! I'm a pasty grey.
My name is Al, I'm really grand
I'll be your pal with X's on my hand.
You like my rap? I wear a cap!
Be Al! Be Al!
Do a stagedive on my head
Or maybe drink alone instead.
Don't you like the way I smile?
I drive all the women wild.
Watch me run just like a reptile.
Be Al! Be Al!
This song'll be heard by millions.
Play that bass riff!
I'm a natural singer.
 The reptile line was a reference to an observation I once made about Al during a softball game. When Al ran, he looked like he kept his torso vertical with his legs and arms flailing in front of him. It reminded me of lizards that I used to see running on water in old National Geographic specials. See the following (starting at about 50 seconds in):

Now, I know Al couldn't be running like that. He didn't have a tail, so he would have fallen over backwards. But, dang if he didn't look like that lizard.

Watching for the Blinky
I have no idea.




We Look for Things That Make Us Go
From some annoying episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. There was an annoying race of people that seemed very simple. They had a broken engine and kept saying that they look for things that make them go.

We'll Get Some AM-FM Action in the United States
A line from the Wreckless Eric song, "A Popsong"
My record company phoned me today
They said we're running out of product and we need some airplay
Just a two-minute song, a snazzy middle eight
We'll get some AM-FM action in the United States.
Here's the video:

Whenever the Facts Betray the Desires
I have no idea.

You Kissed Me So Chastely That I Could Have Cried
From the song "One More Night" whose author I don't know. I am familiar with Dave Edmunds' performance.
The cold hits my face as I stumble outside.
You kissed me so chastely that I could have cried.
Now that I think about it, I think it's supposed to be present tense -- not past. Oh well.

You Yourself May Be Named One by the Tribunal
From Star Trek. "All Our Yesterdays" was the name of the episode (if memory serves). Captain Kirk, is told that the tribunal may identify him as a witch.

Your Beer and Your Change Are in Your Boot
Spoken in 1998 by a then-friend of my then-future-wife. I forget exactly what had led up to it, but this woman had returned from running some errands, and had a beer and some change for me. Maybe I had asked her to pick up a beer? I don't remember. Anyway, she put my beer and change in my boot (it was a shoe-off house) and informed me.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

an unexpected gem

One of the fun things about going through CDs that I got off Freecycle is when I come across something that I had never heard of, yet really like. All the more if its a CD that, based on the cover, I expect to not like. I'm human, and just like everyone else, I make judgements when I see a CD cover -- what genre, whether I will like it or not, etc.

So I came across an album by someone I had never heard of -- Henri Salvador. It's obviously a French language album, it's called l'essentiel, and it has a picture of a greasy old man with a shit-eating grin on the cover. I wasn't expecting much. But I gave it a shot anyway.

There was a version of "Mah-na Mah-na," titled "Mais non, Mais non" (which I understand means "But no, But no."). That was fun. But what really got me was "Zorro est Arrive" which seems to be a French reworking of the Coasters classic, "Along Came Jones" (presumably with Zorro as the title character." And there were other playful numbers -- more than enough to make this a keeper.

Never having heard of Henri Salvador, I decided to ask our couchsurfers (by coincidence we happened to have some French couchsurfers over), and they clearly recognized him. Apparently he's a big star in France. Or at least he was until he died in 2008 at age 90. I learned that last fact looking him up on Wikipedia. I'm glad I gave him a listen. Now it's your turn: