Friday, September 2, 2016

Notes Low and High

Thank Ba'al Hadad It's Friday!

"Into each life some rain must fall, mortals!"

Professional Dumbassery

"I'm a progressive, OF COURSE I'm wrong."
One of the most tiresome aspects of television produced in Hollywood is its relentlessly progressive worldview.

A case in point is the tedious HBO series Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, which is just the sort of predictably left-wing "comedy" that Hollywood considers hilarious.

Recently Oliver devoted an episode to
the subject of charter schools, no doubt because progressives consider the increasing popularity of such schools
to be anathema. Oliver was just pandering to his core demographic: smug, self-righteous liberals.

Of course, Oliver doesn't know the first thing about the subject, so what we got was
a predictably shallow and fact-free rant that simply repackaged the talking points of the people responsible for the failing public schools with which charters are attempting to compete. And, of course, the pushback from his face-plant won't faze him at all.

"So, being an arrogant British prat who is wrong about everything is a TV career path now?"

So it seems, yes...


"Battery schmattery, don't I look cool?"

Tech giant Samsung has announced a global recall of its flagship Galaxy Note 7 smartphone just two weeks after its big rollout. The recall was due to a battery issue.

U.S. cellular companies are scrambling to respond, and this black eye could well be devastating for Samsung, especially considering that its arch-rival Apple is expected
to launch the iPhone 7 on September 7.

Whatever else happens, someone's gonna get fired...

"You didn't want one of those anyway, did you?"

No, nor the newest iPhone...I've been very happy with my Motorola Moto X, and when the time comes I expect I'll go with the latest version of that gadget...

Now It Gets Real

WR Frankie Hammond eludes a Green Bay defender

Last night's 17-7 victory by my beloved Kansas City Chiefs over the visiting Green Bay Packers at Arrowhead marked the end of the 2016 preseason. The Chiefs finished 2-2, with two straight wins.

Now comes the serious business of making the finals cuts to shape the 2016 regular-season roster, and working on the game plan for the September 11 season opener at Arrowhead against the division rival San Diego Chargers.

"Care to make any predictions?"

Yes...I predict that you're going to annoy the hell out of me all season...

If the Dunce Cap Fits

From the pen of Henry Payne, whose editorial cartoons you should read often, as I do.

Until Next Time...

Starting college in the fall of 1971 was a stressful time for me, especially since my plans about where I'd be attending had to change abruptly in late summer. As I have my entire life during times of stress, I found comfort in music. Some of my all-time favorite rock records were released right around that time, including The Who's Who's Next,
Ten Years After's A Space in Time, and The Band's Cahoots.

My freshman semester had barely begun when Santana, one of my favorite groups, released their third album in as many years. Weirdly, it carried only the name Santana, as their debut album had done. Much as everyone eventually referred to The Beatles as "The White Album," this new release came to be unofficially known as "Santana III."

Fans of the band are often nostalgic for this album because it was the last one featuring the band's Woodstock-era lineup (guitarist and bandleader Carlos Santana took his music in a more jazz-oriented direction after this release), and because it introduced 17-year-old guitar wunderkind Neal Schon, who embarked on an impressive career
of his own just a couple of years later, including being a founding member of the multi-platinum-selling band Journey.

The album reached No. 1 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart on November 13, and stayed there for several weeks, driven by the Top 40 hit singles "Everybody's Everything" and "No One to Depend On."

Much as I enjoyed those songs,
my favorite on the album was the ferocious "Toussaint L'Overture,"
an extended instrumental jam which gives each band member some time as the song's focal point. Near the end, Santana and Schon engage in a sizzling guitar duel that fueled some of my best air guitar fantasies (I was always Carlos).

Even after 45 years, when the song reaches the point where the head-cutting begins,
the hairs on the back of my neck stand up.

Today's send-off is the 2006 Legacy Edition remaster of the original track, from Carlos's YouTube channel. If imagining me playing air guitar while you listen would add to your enjoyment, go right ahead...

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