- H. L. Mencken
2002-02-18 - 11:27 a.m.
I went to the Knick game last night. The Knicks got off to an 11 point lead, guess what? They lost. They did have a chance to tie it with a last second three but it was off the mark. That is the typical Knick game. Get off to a lead, blow it, then just fall short at the buzzer. They aren't good but they are exciting.
One of the best things about going to games is spending time with Alan. He is the friend that I see the most often by far. There are times when between visits to Carey he is the only friend I see. I used to meet Roy for lunch but that is hard with my current schedule, the only day I'm really available is Tuesdays. I'll have to make an effort to have lunch with him next week. Maybe we can play bridge one night this week.
Yesterday was the 7th Anniversary of the Idiot's Delight Digest. It is an email group for listeners to the greatest radio show in the world Idiot's Delight hosted by Vin Scelsa. The list was started by and run by a Frühead, Scott Perschke. The list soon became a forum on a wide range of topics most of which have nothing to do with the show. It is just a place where like-minded people can talk about what is on their minds. This is what a random issue of the digest is like.
Idiot's Delight Digest at Topica.com
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Isn't It About Time for a cup of eggnog?
Neil's Let's Roll & Vin's Not Fade Away
No Movie Weekend
Marshall Crenshaw and Kevin Salem - VU 12/14
a Yiddish joke
top of 2001
Date: Sun, 16 Dec 2001 14:01:10 +0000
Subject: Isn't It About Time for a cup of eggnog?
> Isn't it about time we wake up and smell the coffee, or is it smell the
> -- whatever you prefer.
> In my opinion America has done it again.
> Corporations have destroyed what for many of us once embraced as free
> OH STOP IT ALREADY!! SO MUCH DAMN NEGATIVITY IS NOT WHAT WE NEED TO HEAR
> NOW!!! IT'S CHRISTMAS FOR CHRIST SAKE!!!
You are right in so many ways. I don't think you will find many here
that will disagree that there our aspects of our capitalistic culture
that are crass and cheap. It's a theme that has been discussed many
times on the IDD. But unless we are forced to buy the stuff you are
referring to, I guess I can make it through the day.
I can't stand the prominence that crap gets in the stores too. There is
nothing organic or natural born in pop music that ever gets that kind of
attention. I know your theme is much broader than this. Greed is bad.
I think George Harrison may have tried to sum it all up in an interview
I saw recently. "It's all crap."
Have a nice day.
Date: Sun, 16 Dec 2001 09:32:03 -0500
From: "Tom Ucko"
Subject: Neil's Let's Roll & Vin's Not Fade Away
Bob Turba wrote:
"a few reviews of neil young's newest made me think about the black boxes on
planes that hit the pentagon and crashed in pa. has anyone heard if they
released the transcripts from these planes? my guess is they are still
It's been reported that it was news reports based on excerpts from the
transcripts, as well as the earlier about phone calls from passengers, that
formed the inspiration for Neil's song.
By the way, does anyone have a better recording of Let's Roll than the
128kbps MP3 I got from Aimster? I need it for a mix CD I'm making.
Bob Steeves wrote:
"Which brings me to something I've been thinking about. How long do you
think Vin will be on the radio? Will he fade, like Scottso, to an almost
honorary, but small presence (of course, what could be smaller than 4 hours
I think the reality is that Vin has already "faded" away more than Scottso.
I'd guess Muni's weekday noontime hour on a commercial rock station has a
much greater audience than Vin's WFUV show.
Thomas D. Ucko
I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who conquers his
enemies, for the hardest victory is over self. - Aristotle
Date: Sun, 16 Dec 2001 09:39:11 -0500
From: Nora Lee Mandel
Subject: No Movie Weekend
Busy with family stuff this weekend -- including Hanukkah and celebrating
that The Younger got in to Columbia "early D" (a phrase that David Kelley
seems to have invented on "Boston Public") so no movies, and behind on the
Welcome back Kidrane -- are we all forgiven or something?
I was an official, card-carrying member of the Gene Pitney Fan Club when I
was in junior high. His mother ran it.
I have his Greatest Hits on vinyl and a bunch of his singles on '45. "He's
A Rebel" was one of the first 3 '45's I ever bought and was quite struck
that he was the songwriter. While "24 Hours From Tulsa" reduces me to
tears at every hearing (and was imitated in a weepy song by a Scottish band
that I'm blanking on right now (Del Amitri? song about purposely missing a
bus to go home to Significant Other to stay and cheat instead); Darren
Devivo plays the song a lot).
But other than the songs already mentioned, I also adore "I'm Gonna Be
Strong" which is like a tribute to Roy Orbison. I got it as a freebie with
my subscription to the now defunct competitor to Cash Box magazine "Music
Business" (hmm, if I'm remembering the title correctly). That was part of
his "comeback" post-Beatles, including "Last Exit to Brooklyn" -- which of
course I sing whenever I see that sign, much to the Grouch's annoyance --
for 30 years now.
But then here's another reason he's the Grouch -- he came in from his
weekly poker game at midnight Thursday and I was up watching (and taping)
the Tonight Show. "Who's that?" he asks. Me: "You really don't know who
that is?" "No." "Russell Crowe." I don't think he even knew who that was
with the name.
PBS/BBC's "David Copperfield" playing last week and into this week with him
grown-up is the version with the kid who plays Harry Potter.
As to buying charity CDs. What I meant is that when I buy them in the
bargain bins in Sounds, or Academy, or Princeton Record Exchange, etc.
nobody gets the charitable dollars. They were probably review copies or
press freebies or whatever that entered the gray economy. I just felt too
guilty to do that for 9/11 charities. Similarly, I went into Barnes &
Noble fully intending to buy the two 9/11 tribute photo books and couldn't
find either. Have they sold out?
Thin pickings the 2nd week in a row with CD shopping:
Dayna Kurtz - not with the song Vin's been playing but World Cafe has been:
"Tortilla Soup" soundtrack as "Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps" has been used in
a coupla movies this year and sticks in my head; and
another Yazoo field recording of early Americana music.
Date: Sun, 16 Dec 2001 10:52:12 -0500
Isn't it about time for what, Kiddo?
I read the whole damn thing, and I didn't get it. I'm not intellectual
enough, you know. The only part that I think I got was not liking corporate
greed and taking advantage of tragedy. Hell, a while ago I said I hoped
they wouldn't turn the wtc into elvis. After that, it was alot of words.
Do you read ours, or scroll them?
Speaking of flags, I did something the other day, and still don't know what
to make of it. I've noticed all these tired flags out there, and wondered
about how do we ever take these things down, when do they come off the cars,
when do you unwrap yourself from the gut reaction that put them up?
Well, partially, the flags are just doing it themselves. While I was
thinking it would be neat to think they were committing suicide hearing John
Ashcroft on the radios, I think they're just falling off the cars. It's
funny that it is now a common occurrance out here in the 'burbs to pass
flags in the road.
I stopped on I-95, couldn't help myself, the other day, and walked a short
spell up the median between the two sides of the highway. Over just that
little bit, I collected about a dozen of them. One nearly new, another
almost only half a flag, fabric, plastic, nylon, clean and dirty.
I'm not really sure what to do with them, there was just something
fascinating about taking a walk, and finding so many. I then got in the
car, and there was an interview with one of the survivors of the 'friendly
fire' accident last week. He talked about the mission, about the 3 men who
died, his injuries ("blew out my right ear drum, most of my left, not
bad....") and what he'd do next. He said, calmly, without any braggart
sound in his voice, simply....go back, rebuild our unit, and get back to
work. I guess, all bits of political division aside, I'll keep them for
him, and the good folk who proudly flew them, nevermind the corporate
machines that so quickly wove, printed and sold them for profit.
And, for folks like Vin, and Frank Rich, and Jeff, Bruce, Jordan and folks
who still also stand bravely reminding us of other equally important parts
of that flag.
Just to be a bit more cranky, I'm still pretty annoyed with Idiots Delight.
Either the show sucks mostly, or it just doesn't have enough time. I'm
inclined to the latter, I think Vin doesn't fully know how to fit himself
into that short a time period. Once again this week, I enjoyed the guest,
he was interesting and funny, and there was a nice quality to the way he and
Vin related to each other.
But then you lose 2 hours of a 4 hour show..., lose the first 20 minutes to
news and vin chatting with his engineers, lose 45 minutes to discussion of
the coffee machine, or the missing liner notes on a CD, and the goatee of a
staffer and you end up with a 4 hour show and about 8 songs. The endless
Vin chatter, which was always part of what I loved about the show, now only
grinds into my brain as it eats away the allotted time. And then he
obediently gets himself right off the air at midnight so that a taped show
It just ain't what it used to be. I'm still listening, and I thank Frank
for his easy to use link to some other Iddiots to chat with during the dull
bits in the show, but, the show just isn't great these days. He needs more
Date: Sun, 16 Dec 2001 11:35:52 -0500
From: "Eliot Wagner"
Subject: Marshall Crenshaw and Kevin Salem - VU 12/14
Saw a wonderful show at the Village Underground a few nights ago:
Marshall Crenshaw, with Kevin Salem opening for him.
First a few words about Kevin Salem: he' s really very good. Kevin
was Freedy Johnston's guitarist until ''95 or so, when he came out
with his first album, Soma City (now out of print except in Japan,
Kevin said) and appeared on ID. Although his first two albums have
a fuzzy, buzzy relentlessness about them (more BTO than Black
Sabbath), Kevin's band on Friday had more of a kind of mid-70s
feel to them.
The first song that they played (I don't keep set lists, my memory
ain't the greatest anymore and I don't think Kevin mentioned the
name of the song) sounded like something that would have been a
album closing 8 minute track if this was still 1974. Given that it is
2001, the song was of normal length. Also giving the band some
mid-70s color was the keyboard player, who sounded like he had
heard Dave Mason's first album a few times. The line-up of guitar,
bass, drums and keyboards was fine for most everything except for
some songs from Soma City (especially Amnesia, a personal
favorite) which really needed a second guitar.
Kevin Salem really rocked, and even though he apologized in
advance to some folks sitting right in front of the stage for "the
hearing that they were about to lose," wasn't overly loud. A real
top notch act.
After a too long intermission (needed at the Village Underground,
the only place on the face of the earth where there is a line for the
men's room and no line for the ladies' room), Marshall came on by
himself. He did three songs solo and then brought up the band
"His Group of Guys." They proceeded to go through the Marshall
Crenshaw catalog and did just about every song that you could
have wanted them to do. They worked up to two songs with
Marshall strapping on his gold, loud electric guitar, the last one
being Television Lights (I know that many people think that TMD
was the best song off of #447, but to my mind -- and my ears --
Television Lights was the best).
And that would have been the end of the set except that Marshall
said that he was booked into Mohegan Sun next month and had
come up with a tribute to tuxedo-clad lounge singers. He switched
to bass, and lead the band through Bobby Darren's Beyond the
Sea, had another band member do the vocals on My Way, and
finished up with The Beat Goes On ("Sonny Buono would have
been President today if he was still alive," declared Marshall).
Of course there was an encore, and of course it was Someday,
Someway. Just a great evening of music.
Date: Sun, 16 Dec 2001 11:42:10 -0800
From: "Jordan S. Hoffman"
Subject: rufus thomas
if you've never seen the film "Wattstax" Rufus Thomas gives a fantastic
performance. . . .
Date: Sun, 16 Dec 2001 11:44:55 -0500
From: "ron geberer"
Subject: record shows
I wonder how many of you guys know about the used record (both LP and CD)
shows that go on at the Holiday Inn on 57th Street the third Saturday of every month? There are both rare collectors' items
and new stuff at a reduced price, not to mention videos and the occasional boot (I didn't say anything!) There is something
from everybody--the last time I was there, I bought both Coleman Hawkins and the Traveling Wilburys.
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Date: Sun, 16 Dec 2001 11:48:15 -0500
From: "ron geberer"
Subject: a Yiddish joke
It seems that Morris and Harry, both about 80 years old or so, were watching the
news from Afghanistan on TV, and the newscaster mentioned the bombing of the Tora Bora caves. Morris turned to Harry
and said, "Ich vaist vus ist `Torah,' obed vaist du, vus ist `bora'"?
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Date: Sun, 16 Dec 2001 12:04:32 -0500
Subject: top of 2001
The only new record I freaked on this year was One Nil - Neil Finn.
AS for reissues - Charles "Baron" Mingus - West Coast 1945-49
(Don't tell anyone it came out in 2000.)
Date: Sun, 16 Dec 2001 11:32:54 -0500
From: Steven Lederman
Subject: glam bands
I was out with some friends (and friends of friends) last night and got
into a discussion with one of the younger women about music. When I
mentioned my tastes spanned a broad variety, she asked i I liked glam
bands. I assumed she was referring to Bowie, T Rex and the rest. Nope -
it seems Poison and Motely Crue are now considered the glam bands. A ten
year age difference never felt so distant. :-)
Coldplay's "Parachutes" came out summer of 2000. I''ve seen it on a few
Best Of lists and I remember it charting last year. Still working on my list.