Wednesday, October 05, 2011

...well, at least I'm being HONEST...

I've never been the type of person who enjoys deadlines, requirements, policies, etc. I remember getting in trouble in 5th grade for not finishing my homework. There were cartoons to watch when I got home, after all. Of course, that was the time in my life where I had a witch as a teacher, a kommandant in the principal's office, and I had to go behind enemy lines at the end of the school day because everyone wanted to beat me up. And I didn't have a Tiger waiting for me when I got home. (You know, the "Calvin and Hobbes" tiger...) So I'll just let my mind wander here in yet another "dandruff" post (You know, 'off the top of my head'...)

THE WORLD SERIES: No, that's not happened yet. But I have been watching the Playoffs, which is a lot different than watching the Seattle Mariners. After all, in the playoffs, there is excellence, there is professionalism, and actual timely pitching and hitting. Dare I say, Actual Competition! Turner Broadcasting service is carrying all the divisional playoffs. And what you don't see on TBS, can be found on TNT, another Turner network. Gosh. I remember when the Federal Communications Commission used to outlaw monopolies in broadcasting. I have a complaint, tho. The Volume Levels wildly fluctuate up and down, with commercials louder than any of the game broadcast. And then, during the broadcast itself, all of a sudden the volume will nosedive to a barely audible level, before (gradually) returning to anything like a normal noise level, just in time for them to blast me out of the water with another ultra-loud commercial. I think this issue has to do with some sort of signal compression. How about this, guys...make the volume at least EQUAL for both commercials and gamecasts! So far, tonite's Phillies/Diamondbacks game has gone smoothly, but things were pretty lousy on preceding sportscasts.

THE GREAT CAMERA DILEMMA: A while back, my Canon Powershot camera was stolen. I replaced it with a cheap Vivitar camera, which is a good camera, but it only has about half the "zoom" that my Canon had. Just for kicks one night, I looked online, and there was the same model of Canon Powershot camera for only $50 bucks! So, I bought it. Now I have two cameras. I could probably take the Vivitar to the Pawnshop, where I might get $10 or $15 bucks for it. So I haven't done that (yet). I'm inclined to use the Canon more than the Vivitar. But when I choose one camera or the other, I feel like I'm "jilting" the other camera. This situation sort-of "jilts" me. Then again, I tend to personalize inanimate objects, and I know it's terribly silly, but I feel Guilty, would you believe, for preferring one camera and leaving the other camera out. This is the point where a typical blog reader is going to throw his hands up in the air, screaming, "GET A #$@# LIFE!!!" And I think I'd agree. Anyone gotta life for sale cheap?

KNEELING AT THE FEET OF THE MASTERS: No, no, no Hare Krishna chants here. I was thinking more along the lines of The Big Bands. I have acquired the Original January 16, 1938 Carnegie Hall recording featuring Benny Goodman and his multi-talented band. The way that band could play Swing Music just leaves me speechless. This is back when Lionel Hampton (vibes) and Gene Krupa (drums) were in the band. Oh, and don't forget Harry James on Trumpet; finally, Teddy Wilson on Piano was little short of magical. What a band! 

It Swings, Swings, Swings.
The album was recorded using a single overhead microphone, and transcribed onto two huge master disks. A copy of that set was made and ended up in the Smithsonian, and the other set disappeared. Folklore has it that someone approached Mr. Goodman the next day and said, "somebody should have made a record of it." Mr. Goodman replied, "someone did!" 

In 1951, Mr. Goodman's daughter found that other master disk set in a closet, and said, "Daddy, What's This?" The recording had lain dormant for 13 years. By then, long-play albums were being made, and the entire concert was etched in vinyl, and in spite of the primitive recording methods in 1938, the resulting album is one of the most exciting records I Have Ever Heard. Benny Goodman may have been a bandleader, but he was no slouch; he put himself out there every single time with absolute whirlwinds of clarinet notes and runs. And with the band he had at the time, well, the whole thing is just MATCHLESS. The band's Really Big Showcase, "Sing, Sing, Sing" turns me on just as much as "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida" ever did. Gene Krupa absolutely played drums with a rock and roll intensity and can be seen doing so on various YouTube videos. The Carnegie Hall Concert was noteworthy, because it brought elements of Jazz together, and proved that Jazz could be respected by even the stodgiest Carnegie Hall Concert Attendee. 

Finally, some Good News: Sarah Palin said today that she is NOT running for President. We can all now Breathe Easier. Although, if she were Prezzident, she could save on traveling expenses; instead of using Air Force One, she could fly around the world on her BROOMSTICK.


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