Friday, June 23, 2023

Saturday 9

Saturday 9: It Ain't Over 'Til It's Over (1991)

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

1) In this song, Lenny Kravitz sings about all the tears he's cried over this relationship. Scientists theorize that human tears fall into two categories: emotional and irritant. "Emotional tears" are most often shed over physical pain, empathy, compassion, depression, and anger/frustration. Think about the last time you cried. What triggered your tears? It was almost exactly six months ago, when I realized I wouldn't be spending Christmas with my dear friend, Henry. Because of his escalating cognitive deterioration, I may never see him again. I love him very much, so this has been hard for me to accept.

2) We also cry "irritant tears," which means we well up when a foreign particle gets in our eye. Over-the-counter drops can help. What's the last thing you bought at the drugstore? Was it a medication (OTC or prescription) or something else entirely? I picked up my prescription mouthwash and a 6-pack of Coke at Walgreen's.

3) TV actresses have played a big part in Lenny Kravitz' life. His mother was Roxie Roker, who played the neighbor Helen on The Jeffersons. His wife (and the inspiration for this song) was Lisa Bonet, who played one of the daughters on The Cosby Show. Their daughter, Zoe Kravitz, appeared in the HBO series Big Little Lies. What TV series do you never tire of, and could watch again and again? I am forever entertained by The Dick Van Dyke Show. Carl Reiner was involved in most episodes – writing, directing, or appearing as Alan Brady – and I'm impressed by how prolific and sophisticated he was. And Dick Van Dyke was ridiculously good as Rob Petrie. I don't think I've seen him hit a false note.

4) Thinking of Big Little Lies ... Zoe Kravitz co-starred with Nicole Kidman. Shortly after Kidman divorced Tom Cruise, she dated Lenny Kravitz. Have you ever been curious about a partner's past love? Not really. I wanted to hear as much as he wanted to share.

5) Lenny Kravitz and Today Show weatherman Al Roker are second cousins (their grandfathers were brothers). Do you turn to a TV weatherman for the forecast? Or do you check a website or app? I watch the news in the morning, and during the day I say, "Alexa, what's the weather outside?" Weather here in Chicagoland can be very changeable, depending on how close you happen to be to our Great Lake. I haven't found an app that reflects that, but Alexa is very good.

6) Also a talented photographer, Lenny's work has been displayed at the Leica Gallery in Wetzlar, Germany. What's the most recent photo you took? A picture of a deposit slip. One of my duties as condo board member is to empty the coin slots in the laundry room and take the quarters to the bank. I text the deposit slip to our management company for record keeping. It's just as dull as it sounds.

7) In 1991, when this song was popular, Murray Bicycles were the top seller among younger set. Popularity is fleeting, though. By 2004, the company filed for bankruptcy and no longer produces bicycles. Was your bike a big part of your summer when you were a kid? Oh, yes! Sometimes I pretended it was a horse, other times a motorcycle. It was important, too, for taking me from hither to yon.

8) Also in 1991, Gene Roddenberry died. Mr. Roddenberry is best known as the creator of Star Trek. Who's your favorite Star Trek character? I've never willingly watched a Star Trek episode, so my answer is not well informed. But from what I've accidentally picked up, I'll go to with Capt. James T. Kirk.

9) Random Question: How do you think your high school classmates remember you? Apparently I'm remembered as smart, which is amusing because I was a straight C student. But I've interacted with some former classmates on social media, and they recall me as a far better student than I was. 

Not without a fight!

I should be happy. I'm getting along well with my oldest friend and my buddy, John. I got new glasses with oh-so pretty Marc Jacobs frames. My favorite-most ball player, Anthony Rizzo, is getting his swing back. My Cubs are playing their first-ever games in London this weekend!

So what's that big dark cloud marring my blue sky?

On Tuesday, there was a blood bath at Turner Classic Movies! The top executives -- the world-class film nerds who curate the TCM collection, put on the annual Film Festival, promote the books for sale in the TCM Library, and are part of the classic film preservation movement -- were all axed.

The parent company, Warner Brothers Discovery+, is carrying $45.434B in debt (yes, that's billions). The studio has a new chairman, David Zaslav, and he's been in the political, financial and entertainment headlines because of his problems with CNN (the Trump Townhall and the firing of Chris Licht), skyrocketing debt (it's 3x higher today than in 2020), and the failure of The Flash at the box office. Zaslav, who appears to be a highly reactive chairman, responded with staff cuts at TCM.

This is not good news. This is terrible news. This could mean no more festivals, and worse, no more TCM. The news was so bad and so shocking Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese and Paul Thomas Anderson got together and very publicly lobbied Zaslav to protect the integrity of TCM. Then we fans got involved. Emails to Tweets with hashtag #SaveTCM. All this activity got the attention of the Hollywood trade papers, as well as CNBC and the NY and LA Times. This is not the kind of attention stockholders like, and the WBD stock dropped another 30¢/share. This afternoon we learned that there may be light at the end of the tunnel. Zaslav hired two new and trusted executives to handle "oversight of TCM."

There's something very satisfying about being active, doing something beyond complaining, and then getting some semblance of results.

I love my TCM community. We're genuinely connected by our love of classic film. There's also much to teach and learn from this uniquely American artform. I'm not letting it go without a fight!

PS If you want to join the fight, let David Zaslav and the board of WBD+ know you're a consumer and you love TCM.


Mail: Office of the Corporate Secretary, Warner Bros. Discovery, Inc.   230 Park Avenue South.   New York, NY. 10003

Twitter: #SaveTCM