Friday, March 06, 2020

Saturday 9

Saturday 9: Bye, Bye Blackbird (1957)

Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.

1) In this song, Julie London complains about all the "hard luck stories" people are handing her. Did you more recently listen to someone else's problems, or share your own? My friend Kathleen shared her concern about the impact the coronavirus is having on her 401(k). I'm sure it's having the same effect on mine, but I haven't checked like she has.

2) She promises to arrive "late tonight." What time do you think is too late to drop in on someone? 9:00 PM. I got that from my mom. 9:00 PM was the magic hour. Polite people don't call other polite people after 9:00, nor do they drop in after 9:00, either. (Though to be honest, I don't like being dropped in on at all.)

3) Julie's nickname was "The Liberty Girl" because she was Liberty Records' first successful artist. The second was singer-songwriter David Seville, who had a couple novelty hits as "The Chipmunks." There were three singing chipmunks. Without looking it up, can you name them? Simon, Theodore and ALVIN!

4) Julie's love of music was shared by her mother. When Julie was a little girl, mother and daughter would listen to Billie Holiday records together. What recordings did you enjoy when you were very young? My Other Grandpa (my mom's parents were divorced) lived alone in a two-room suite in this lady's house. He kept a record player and some records for me to enjoy when I visited. I remember this one, specifically. "You know the feeling that you get each time your birthday comes? That's the feeling that you get when Cubby plays the drums. Hey, Cubby Boy! Play, Cubby Boy! Play those drums!"

5) She began modeling when she 17. Julie was working as an elevator operator when a talent agent saw her and decided she would photograph well. With the advent of push-button elevators, elevator operator is a job that doesn't exist anymore. Can you think of another job that was once common but now is rare (or non-existent)? Milkman.

6) Julie recorded more than 30 albums and was named "most popular female vocalist" by Billboard magazine in 1956. If you could see any entertainer -- male or female -- in concert, who would you choose? Honest, the first one to pop into my head is Ringo. I've seen Sir Paul so many times, and Ringo is 80 this year, so I think I'd like to see him and his All Starr Band while I still can.

7) She appeared in Westerns on both TV and in the movies. Have you ever dreamed of being a cowboy/cowgirl? Oh, yes! Blaze and I were going to tear up the Wild West.

8) For six seasons, Julie played Dixie McCall R.N. on the show Emergency! The series was about Los Angeles paramedics and firefighters. Do you often hear sirens in your neighborhood? This is relative. My friend John, who lives just off Rush Street, can't get over how quiet my neighborhood is. Whereas Nancy, who was once a neighbor but has moved about 10 miles to the west, complains about how noisy it is.

9) Random question: You're pulled over for speeding. Do you think you'd have an easier time talking your way out of it if the officer was a man ... or a woman? I don't drive, but I suspect I'd be screwed either way. I have a wee problem with authority.

Achingly proud of him

My nephew worked hard for Elizabeth Warren. Though managing a full class load, he still spent his weekends driving three hours from his dorm to Iowa, canvassing, and then driving three hours back. He slogged through snow. He crashed over night in the homes of other volunteers he didn't even know. One night he even slept under a White Sox blanket!

For a while, she was at the top of the polls. Then the Iowa Caucus actually happened and her vote total was disappointing. Her momentum had vanished. She didn't even carry her own state on Super Tuesday, and dropped out.

My nephew is desolate. Of course. He's a true believer.

In a way, that makes me even more proud of him. He not only gave his time and gas money, he risked his heart.

He hasn't yet committed to Bernie. I know that's where he leans ideologically, but he seems to feel a little too bruised right now to do anything more than vote in the Illinois primary.

But he'll be back in the arena. I know he will.

My nephew is our future. We're lucky to have committed young people like him.