Saturday, August 25, 2018

Saturday 9

Think (1968)
Unfamiliar with this week's song. Hear it here.

In fond remembrance of The Queen of Soul (1942-2018).
1) As befits one of America's premiere artists, Aretha Franklin sang at three Presidential inaugurations. The first was Jimmy Carter's in 1977, when she sang "God Bless America." What's your favorite patriotic song? "America, The Beautiful." If anyone asked me -- and no one has -- I'd suggest making this our national anthem. "And crown thy good with brotherhood from sea to shining sea!" C'mon. How does that not get to you?

2) The daughter of a Baptist minister, Aretha grew up with church music. She told Rolling Stone one of her favorite songs was the hymn, "Victory Is Mine." What's your favorite religious song?  I'll stick with "America, The Beautiful." It's in our church hymnal, and one of the later verses especially applies today: "O, beautiful, for heroes proved in liberating strife, who more than self thy country loved and mercy more than life." There's so much macho chest thumping these days about being "tough" on our allies, "tough" on NFL players, even "tough" on mothers who enter this country looking for asylum for themselves and their children (which is legal). It would help us to remember that heroes can be merciful.

3) She welled up a bit when President George W. Bush presented her with the nation's highest civilian award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2005. When is the last time you shed a tear? Last week. Streisand Day on TCM.


4) In 1980, the Queen of Soul sang for the Queen of England in a Command Performance at The Royal Albert Hall. Have you ever been to London? Nope.

5) Since Aretha had many honorary degrees, it would have been appropriate to refer to her as Dr. Franklin. Who is the last person you referred to by his or her title (Officer, Father, Sgt., Dr., etc.)? Golly, I can't remember the last time I addressed anyone directly by title. I referred to my GP as "doctor" when I was talking to her office staff, last week, over the phone.

6)  In this week's song, Aretha tells her lover that it doesn't take a high IQ to understand what's going on in their relationship. Do you know your IQ? Nope.

7) A sculpture of Aretha is on display at Madame Tussaud's in New York. Do you think wax museums are cool, or creepy? I don't see this as an either/or.

8) Aretha and Motown legend Smokey Robinson were literally lifelong friends, since they were playground buddies in Detroit. Smokey is one of the only people who can claim to have seen The Queen of Soul with a bucket in a sandbox. If we went to the playground today, would you head for the swings, the slide or the jungle gym? Or, like Aretha, would you play in the sand? Swings! By the way, my mom never let us go near the sandbox. She maintained it was "filthy." When I was a wee one, I thought she was crazy. "Other kids use it!" But now, I see her point. Who patrols it to make sure that outdoor cats won't do what cats do in sand?

9) Random question: Do you like pumpkin seeds? I don't not like them.


  1. "...with brotherhood from sea to shining sea!" is what we need more of now.

  2. I'd vote for that anthem change. I've suggested America, The Beautiful many times throughout my life. We have the most unsingable anthem ever...and why we'd choose a song about just one battle to characterize us I'll never understand.

  3. I love the swings too. We cover the sandbox where I work, and I am sure many do, but it is so hard and it gets nasty stuff in it anyway. Loved your answers! Have a nice weekend.

  4. I love that song, too and it has beautiful verses. God has blessed America and shed His grace on Thee. It's time for people to respond in kindness and brotherhood from sea to shining sea. I'm with your Mother and you on sand boxes although when I was a kid, I loved making mud pies and confess to eating dirt sometimes. Ewwww.

  5. I love swinging but wonder what would happen now that I get random bouts of vertigo. That could make the swing something far out!

  6. or for that matter, who's to say that KIDS won't do what cats do? I once heard that the ball box at McDonald's is the filthiest place because kids get in there and pee.

    " It would help us to remember that heroes can be merciful." Amen. From your fingers to he Oval Officie's eyes (though I don't think he's in the oval office much)

  7. Total with you on America the Beautiful. It should be our national anthem because it is a lovely, inclusive song not about war and ... everyone can sing it!

  8. Funny, I saw that The Way We Were was coming on TV and I was already drained so I decided to skip it this time around. Glad to see the Cubs are having a good day :)

  9. I liked all your observations and insights....
    There was a movement to get the anthem changed to "America The Beautiful" but, of course, the whole mentality had shifted by then. Lots of MONEY was made off the first world war. Promoting War was big business, as some enlightened Ex-military men of the time concluded.