So, a man is sitting in the park eating his lunch and checking out the local talent, when this old man appears, coming down the path towards the bench where he’s sitting.
Now this old guy is old money, you can tell. The kind of money that bought a dozen very good suits on Savile Row in 1956 and is going to get every damn cent’s worth out of them. He’s a little old gent, well into his seventies, but wiry and strong, all decked out in a tweed suit, a smart green waistcoat, matched silk tie and pocket square, fob chain, and a spotless green homburg — the whole production – and he’s striding down the road like he’s being charged by the foot.
In his left hand, he’s brandishing a stout silver-tipped walking stick, and as he gets closer, the man can see that his other hand is cradling the end of a smallish house-brick which he has tucked into the crook of his elbow. It’s a perfectly nice brick – red, quite new, but with a couple of chips out of the near end. The brick has a piece of bright red string tied around it with a careful knot. The string loops down toward the old man’s knees and then back up, the end clutched in the same hand as the walking stick. The string dances and jiggles as the old man waves his stick at young people and rapscallions.
So he harrumphs up to the bench, stops with a crunch of gravel and an excuse me, young man, dreadfully sorry, do you mind? so the man says, yes, of course.
The old man rests his walking stick up against the bench, takes the square out of his pocket and brushes a speck of dust off the bench, leans over, still cradling the brick carefully with his arm, flicks a few leaves off of a patch of grass in front of the bench, replaces the pocket square and plops the brick down right in the middle of the patch of grass. He looks at the brick, moves it a bit to the right, loops the string around his shoe and tucks the end into his pants pocket, then settles back with a sigh of contentment to survey the view.
Now, the man has just about finished his sandwich, all except the dried up crust at the end, so he looks at the brick and thinks, why not? so he goes would your dog like a bit of my sandwich?
The old man looks round at him and says, I beg your pardon?
Your dog. Would it like the last bit of my sandwich?
I don’t have a dog, young man, says the old gent, his eyes boggling out a little.
Sorry, says the man, I just thought, and he points at the brick.
The old man looks down at the brick in front of him like he’s never seen it before in his life. He says, that, young man, that is a brick. You can tell from the fact that it is a damn brick. Does it look like a dog to you?
Well, says the man, it’s got a string tied around it.
The old guy is up out of his seat now. I hope, he says, that you are not suggesting I don’t know the difference between a brick and a dog? He grabs his walking stick and he’s waving it in the air, big random swings.
It’s all too much for the other man, and he bolts for it, shedding crusts and papers as he goes.
The old guy reaches down and picks up the brick.
“That fooled the little fucker, Fido. Good boy.”[Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec – Old Man at Celeyran]
Villago Delenda Est
Just startled the cat.
Awesome. Brings this to mind for some reason:
I read an analysis that the best parallel for understanding ISIS is the KKK. And therefore the Iraq war and rise of the Shia there is the US Civil war.
KKK rules by terror. So does ISIS. The warriors of the KKK are ex army officers. Likewise ISIS.
The group had always run things before but is no longer in charge.
I thought it was pretty perceptive. Too bad about much of the rest of the article.
Gin & Tonic
Matched tie and pocket square is for amateurs. Old money would never do that.
@efgoldman: Just be happy it wasn’t a moose.
Friday 13th a little strange at BJ blog.
Villago Delenda Est
@Omnes Omnibus: CONFEDERATE Army officers. As in the original KKK founded by Nathan Bedford Forrest.
@Omnes Omnibus: Nathan Bedford Forrest.
The analogy obviously is not perfect.
@efgoldman: My parents live in a small Wisconsin city and deer move through their yard a few times a week. A few years ago, my brother saw a bear just up the street from his house. OTOH, there is still a shitload of lumber money in town and it has wonderful museums and concert halls. Also, the best skiing within four hours of Chicago.
My mom, dad, and brother saw a wolf outside our cabin in northern WI. I am ever so envious.
I get deer fairly softer throughout the year, but last year when I made a feeding station because the snow was so high I got a herd. Between 9-18 would show up every night. Mostly for the salt lick.
@Omnes Omnibus: I’ve seen deer here in Glendale, up towards the Verdugo hills. I was a bit surprised to see them so far down in the city.
@efgoldman: They fuck with the cars as well.
There’s a hill in the middle of the Santa Clara valley – Communications Hill now, Dairy Hill once – that is surrounded by the city of San Jose and has a small population of deer living on it. Also a ton of coyote, going by the scat, but I don’t see them as often as I see the deer.
Somebody got his pony.
Stumbled across a tune I often spun on the radio back when. Hadn’t thought of either the song or the group in over 40 years so it was a quite pleasant rediscovery.
Nice. Hadn’t heard/thought of them in years.
Another song that hits me the same way is the James Gang’s “Midnight Man.” It was so big in its day, but I haven’t heard it anywhere in years, even on the Sirius “deep cuts” channels.
ETA: You’d think it would get some play just because of the Joe Walsh angle. I mean, c’mon, if Ted Nugent is still a thing . . . (Although he’s still a thing mainly as a joke.)
@catclub: Not really an analogy. The situation in the ME is a fundamental and very longstanding 1500 year conflict: Sunnis vs. Shi’as; goes back to the beginnings of the religion. So it is even more fundamental than the Catholic-Protestant divide. It is mainly a Middle East conflict since the overwhelming majority of Muslims outside the ME are Sunni. The Shi’a are analogous to the Catholics in that they have a hierarchy of clergy and “bishops” and a “pope” (i.e. the Ayatollah) that kind of rules their flocks (but this seems to be nationally determined). Sunnis are more like Protestants in that anyone can create a version of the faith for any reason and on any basis and so you get the chaos and extremism of the Sunni version of Islam and this goes back hundreds of years. Sunni Islam needs to get structured or otherwise it is just going to become cultism in this modern age.
Mnemosyne (iPad Mini)
We saw one at Descanso Gardens one time. It was a pretty big one, too.
Of course, there are plenty of them in Griffith Park, but so is the mountain lion.
Yeah, it was big with a capital B.
Might have been another tune, but seem to recall that “Midnight Man” was among the first singles released with totally compressed audio. What that resulted in was the needle on the VU meter staying stationary at one level and never moving until the fade-out at the end.
Don’t subscribe to Sirius, but willing to guess that they don’t play this one either.
@mdblanche: and suddenly the cries of millions of purity ponies were suddenly snuffed out, without a trace….
Song-wise: We have this.
@Mnemosyne (iPad Mini): Desconso Gardens is right at the foot of the San Rafael hills, so that’s not much of a surprise. The deer that I saw were at Mountain and Campbell, right below the Detrich Street reservoir.
I once saw a opossum in downtown LA, it ran across the plaza in front of my building, headed up 3 sets of escalators like it was late for a meeting up the hill.
Can’t swear that I’ve heard it anywhere on Sirius, but it’s a hell of a lot more likely than anything by the James Gang. Traffic has a pretty high “classic cred” quotient.
It’s interesting to me how some big groups (from any past era) just drop completely off the radar, even though in their day they were bigger than some groups that have lasted. (And I’m not just talking about sales or “popularity.”) Spooky Tooth comes to mind. I wasn’t a big fan, but they had a cult following, and yet they have all but disappeared.
That Traffic song got me thinking about “40,000 Headmen,” but then I thought I’d go for another Dave Mason deep cut: “Feelin’ Alright.”
ETA: Actually, one of the things that I really like about Sirius is that all of its genre channels really do get into the deep cuts. And they have some channels that are nothing but deep cuts: Classic Vinyl, Classic Rewind, Deep Tracks, etc.
Somebody mentioned Toad the Wet Sprocket earlier today, so I’ve got to get this out of my system.
@Steeplejack: This Song(Baby Blue) played on my phone during my walk today.
And I’ve been (re)experiencing my crackro-American roots with Willie’s Roadhouse, Sirius’s really old-school country channel. I put it on when I was driving home after the Super Bowl to calm my spirits, because only serious, non-ironic tragic old-school country could assuage the pain, and I keep coming back to it. Faron Young, “She Went a Little Bit Farther.”
“Faron Young” is an awesome name.
@BillinGlendaleCA: Speaking of This Song. The video was filmed in the LA County Courthouse.
The backstory is that Harrison was sued for plagiarism for “My Sweet Lord” and lost.
Oh, man, right in that same period.
ETA: And that was Kenny Rogers in his pre-country phase doing the intro. LOL.
Do you happen to know of a Badfinger song that is just vocals and 12-string guitar? Have searched for years without success. It’ll probably turn out to be a completely different band, which is why I haven’t been able to run it down. Maddening.
@efgoldman: Just you wait, they’ll follow the train tracks down from NH and Vermont like the moose that got all the way into Cleveland Circle in 1996.
@Steeplejack: I didn’t realize that Badfinger wrote “Without You” until I got their greatest hits album.
Not sure about the song you’re thinking of. If it was by Badfinger, it shouldn’t be too hard to narrow down. Their catalog is unfortunately small due to their rather tragic end.
I went down the wormhole behind “Fall Down” and emerged at Firefall.
@efgoldman: Was driving home one night when a couple of louts of my acquaintance came flying past me doing 75 or so. A couple hundred yards up the road I catch a glimpse of something flash across the road, then I see their car jump. They manage to pull off the side of the road, and I pull in front of them. The flash had of course been a deer. The impact popped their hood, which then folded back over the windshield. Fortunate thing too,.as the body of the deer had traveled over the engine and up the hood, scooping out the fiberglass insulation. It had been reduced to basically a fur covered bag of pulverized bones when we found it in the ditch.
More crackro-American roots music: Marty Robbins, “Big Iron.” Talk about your Second Amendment remedies.
I had to run to my step father’s house for a couple of days. I was hoping that my tomcat (who has been spite pissing of late) would behave himself and leave my chair alone. He was indeed a very good boy while I was gone. He actually waited all of 30 minutes after I got home tonight to spite piss in my chair. /facepalm
Yeah, that’s why I’m now thinking it’s another group. I have searched their stuff pretty thoroughly. I heard the song only once or twice on FM radio in a short time window, and I could have sworn it was them. Dang.
Saw Jupiter Ascending tonight. I recommend, just don’t take it too seriously. Friend I went with was like, Channing Tatum as a shirtless interstellar werewolf with gravity boots, Sean Bean, and Mila Kunis as Cinderella who can kick-as*. What’s not to like? And if that doesn’t entice you, the visuals are gorgeous, Jupiter’s red spot plays a part of the story, and there’s a bunch of cool steampunk moments. (Dialog a bit lacking, but would be very hard to make a two hour movie of this scope that didn’t get melodramatic. Why I say not to take it too serious).
Blustery 50 – 60+ mph winds and intermittent showers, so curling up with the ‘net to reminisce a bit.
Another one which had mucho airplay and long, long unthought of since.
Can’t find a standalone cut, but the signature tune with which used to close out one of my radio shows (also long, long ago and seemingly in a galaxy far, far way) at 8:20 – 12:40.
Del Reeves, “Girl on the Billboard.”
My dad, an old Tennessee boy from Nashville, thought that song was a hoot. I remember listening to it with him while we tooled around in the Ford Falcon station wagon. Good times. Later, in the fraught days of the rock ’n’ roll revolution, we were able to find common ground in the Lovin’ Spoonful’s “Nashville Cats.”
Distinctly remember a parody song cropping up about a kosher deli owner – “Noshville Katz.”
@Steeplejack: As a Memphian, that song annoyed me.
@Steeplejack: My grandfather was from Nashville, though I’m sure a bit before your father.
Leon! Did you know in his early days he produced Gary Lewis and the Playboys? As in “This Diamond Ring.” Chilling in its implications. (And appalling that I still know all the lyrics.)
And Tracy Nelson and Mother Earth! Damn, haven’t thought about them either in a long, long time. Thanks for the memories.
I’ll throw back a little Delaney and Bonnie and Friends.
Please accept a helping of “Memphis Soul Stew” as a peace offering.
I used to eat at Katz’s Deli in Atlanta—a weird, authentic outpost of New York deli food in the deep South. Weird. I’ve been trying to find a really good pastrami sandwich here in NoVA. I’ve found a fairly good one (Lost Dog Café) but not a great one yet.
Dad was born in 1927. They lived out around Madison.
@Steeplejack: Thank you. I had no problem with Nashville, only with moving Sun there.
@Steeplejack: I know my grandfather had left for Missouri by the late 1910’s. My dad was born in Springfield in 1919.
@Steeplejack: Huh. My Dad was born in ’26, they all lived in Boston area from when the family came to the U.S.
Well, they were self-absorbed hipsters from New York City. Did you know that John Sebastian is the godson of Vivian Vance (Ethel Mertz on I Love Lucy)? Holy shnikeys!
YouTube has proceeded through a few more Lovin’ Spoonful songs, and it reminds me what a good guitarist Zal Yanovsky was. Dead too young at 57 (in 2002). He had a distinctive sound that reminds me of Buffalo Springfield’s country-inflected stuff. Sort of “bastard hippie child of Chet Atkins.”
Is YouTube doing this for everyone now, proceeding through some undisclosed playlist after finishing the clip you actually requested? What happened to just play the specified clip and stop? Rhetorical question. I’m not complaining about all the sequelae, but some of them . . . whoa.
ETA: Okay, objections withdrawn. Just washed up on “Funky Nassau” two songs after “Memphis Soul Stew.” Me likey.
Do they/you all still live in that area? If not, whither the diaspora?
My father was born in Nashville, my mother was born in rural Montgomery County (northern Tennessee, outside Clarksville). He joined the Air Force, and their sons were born in Kentucky, New Orleans and London, England. One brother and I live in NoVA, the other brother and our mother live in Las Vegas.
You should see what the elephants do!
“Is that a Mercedes hood ornament or are you just happy to see me?”
More Faron Young: “Hello, Walls.” Some weird mise-en-scène going on here. Not sure it really requires that many people to do this song.
ETA: Let’s get back to first principles: Patsy Cline, “I Fall to Pieces.”
@Steeplejack: I’m too young for that stuff. I’ll take the Beatles, even got a pic of me and madame on Abbey Road.
Gary (son of Jerry) Lewis and the Playboys were the primary reason for John Fred to alter the name of his musical group even though it predated Lewis’ by a good few years.
I was vaguely aware that Governor Kitzhaber had some trouble in Oregon, but I had no idea he was anywhere near resigning. and now he’s out. It could be worse, but this seems like a shame to me — he’d been a successful governor (re-elected to his fourth term) and, except for some blue dog or conservadem types, I’m usually sorry to see a Democratic governor have ethics problems.
As I said, I haven’t followed the scandal up until now, but a quick look at the NYT comments accompanying the article about his resignation make it sound like Kitzhaber may have allowed the wrong part of his anatomy to make decisions concerning his much younger and quite attractive fiance. If that’s the case, it would be tragic.
The Democrats don’t have enough good politicians to be able to lose one like Kitzhaber to a senseless scandal. I hope he is exonerated, but the damage is already done. A sad day for Oregon and Democrats.
Cool. We lived in England (Ealing, suburb of London) from 1957 to 1960.
I was born in 1952, and my musical awakening really caught fire with the Beatles invasion in ’63-64. That Christmas I got a portable record player and two LPs: Meet the Beatles and Telstar by the Ventures.
But, as I said above, I have to acknowledge my crackro-American roots. I’m going out with more Patsy—“Walkin’ After Midnight” and “San Antonio Rose.”
Steep out. See you tomorrow.
One more: Joe South, “Don’t It Make You Want to Go Home.”
Damn it: can’t resist those YouTube “up next” links.
@Steeplejack: ahh yes, The Sheriff. I grew up on Faron Young and Charlie Pride… the refrains of Does My Ring Hurt Your Finger and Your Time’s Coming are part of my growing up….. ty for the shout out to Faron, Steeple….
i’ve seen deer in some of chicago’s larger cemetaries – Graceland and Calvary, for instance. and we’ve got a family of coyotes living in Soldier Field.
Buddy Hackett used to tell the following:
An old lady is sitting in Boston Common, old money, impeccably dressed, on a fine summer day, smiling serenely.
A young boy comes over, sits next to her, starts eating a sammich. Pidgeons descend upon him looking for crumbs. The boy starts yelling at the pidgeons “FUCK OFF! FUCK OFF!”, periodically.
The old woman’s studied and deeply-ingrained calm is starting to show the tiniest bits of fray. She turns to the boy, and says, “Now young man, you needn’t talk like that to the pidgies! Just tell them, ‘Shoo, pidgies, shoo!’… And then they’ll fuck off.”