Monday, May 9, 2016

Deuces Wild

Two Blind Squirrels

The American idiom "Even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in awhile" is a colloquial way of expressing the idea that even someone who is wrong pretty much all of the time on pretty much every subject can occasionally express a correct opinion, just by chance.

Over the past few days we've seen some good examples of this sort of thing.

President Obama at Howard University
On Saturday, during a commencement address at Howard University, President Obama chided students for their recent efforts to prevent people from speaking on their campuses, and trying to disrupt those speeches when they are given.

Well said, sir.

Michael Bloomberg at the University of Michigan
Meanwhile, Super Nanny Michael Bloomberg of New York, at a similar speech at the University of Michigan the previous Saturday, decried the campus push for "safe spaces," "trigger warnings," and other attempts to stifle free expression.

He got booed, but he was right. Good for you, sir.

Since the assault of freedom of speech will continue unabated regardless of whether black-eyed skank Hillary Clinton or asshat Donald Trump gets elected, I'll take my allies on this issue where I can find them.

"Don't sugar-coat it, Shu, tell us what you really think."

I'm trying to avoid an NC-17 rating for the blog...

Two Down in Austin

In a special municipal election in Austin, Texas on Saturday, the voters defeated Proposition 1, which would have overturned the city council's attempt to protect unionized taxi services from competition from real-time ridesharing companies
Lyft and Uber through onerous regulations.

"Is it possible that the majority of voters in Austin are just nincompoops?"

I must admit I am tempted to draw that conclusion, yes...

Series Math

A good baseball team wins series (two of three, three of four). A mediocre team loses them. My beloved Kansas City Royals are a mediocre team right now, having failed to win a series since taking two of three from the Baltimore Orioles at Kauffman Stadium two weeks ago.

3B Cheslor Cuthbert thrown out at home in the 7th
Yesterday the team dropped a 5-4 decision in Cleveland, losing that series two games to one even though both teams scored 12 runs total in the series.

In a perfect example of how things have gone haywire for the Royals recently, after scoring their fourth run in the top of the 7th inning the team managed to squander an excellent chance to at least tie the game.

They had second-and-third with no outs, but a grounder to short (runner thrown out at home) followed by a double play grounder to second ended the rally. They never threatened again.

The Royals begin a four-game series tonight against the Yankees at Yankee Stadium before returning home. The first team they'll face on the homestand is the National League's Atlanta Braves. Both the Yankees and Braves have struggled mightily this season, so perhaps the Royals can make some hay over the next week or so.


From the indispensable comic strip Non Sequitur, by Wiley Miller, which you should read every day, as I do (even though Wiley is a squishy liberal).

Until Next Time...

Music I enjoyed during my adolescence divides into two categories: Songs / artists I still listen to with regularity even now, and song / artists I enjoy listening to when I chance upon them on the radio or on a TV show, but which I virtually never seek out.

The Canadian band The Guess Who falls squarely in the latter category. They had quite a number of hit singles during my high school years, some of which I was quite fond of, but I can't recall the last time I sought out their music to listen to for its own sake. Whenever I hear one of their songs, it brings back some pleasant memories of those years, and that's not such a bad legacy for music that's nearly half a century old.

American Woman, released in March 1970, was the band's sixth studio album. It went on to become by far their most commercially successful record (peaking at No. 9 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart, the band's only album to crack the Top 10). That was chiefly due to an unusual circumstance involving the second single released from the album. The first, "No Time," reached No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart, which wasn't a surprise, since their previous three singles from two prior albums had charted, two of them in the Top 10.

When the song "American Woman" was released as the second single, it got a lot of airplay right away and shot up the charts. But a funny thing was happening at the same time. A lot of people like me who bought the single actually liked the "B" side song,
"No Sugar Tonight," even better than the "A" side, and began calling in requests for it
to our local Top 40 radio stations. Before long, "No Sugar Tonight" was getting just as much airplay.

On May 9, 1970, not long before my junior year of high school wrapped up, Billboard's Hot 100 Singles chart listed "American Woman" and "No Sugar Tonight" as joint holders of the No. 1 position on the chart, which they would hold for three straight weeks.

Every once in awhile you would see
a "B" side become a hit back in those days (The Beatles had several "B" side hits), but I don't think any other band ever had a release that saw BOTH sides of a single hit No. 1 at the same time.

Because this is my blog and I can do whatever I please, I've decided to share both the "A" and "B" sides with you today. It was the only time The Guess Who ever occupied the No. 1 spot on the singles chart in the United States.

Today's first send-off is the album version of "American Woman," which includes an intro that was excised from the single. Enjoy...

Today's second send-off is the album version of "No Sugar Tonight." The "B" side single version omitted the "New Mother Nature" section of the song. Enjoy...

No comments:

Post a Comment