Monday, January 9, 2017

Monday Fun Day

Feast Day

The Baptism of Christ, by Guido Reni
Today is the Baptism of the Lord, a feast celebrating Christ's baptism in the Jordan River by John the Baptist.

This particular feast day isn't even as old
as I am, having been instituted in 1955 by Pope Pius XII. It was made a moveable feast in 1969 by Pope Paul VI, who set it
for the first Sunday following the Feast of the Epiphany, except in those years when that feast happens on January 7 or 8,
as it did this year. When that happens,
we celebrate the Baptism of the Lord the next day, Monday.

This feast marks the official liturgical end of Christmastide, with Ordinary Time beginning tomorrow and lasting through Shrove Tuesday (the day before Ash Wednesday), which falls on February 28 this year.

Elite Eight

What a difference a year makes! Just one year ago on Wild Card Weekend all four road teams (including my beloved Kansas City Chiefs and my best friend Skip's beloved Pittsburgh Steelers) won. This season, no road team won on Wild Card Weekend, nor even came particularly close: the smallest margin of victory in the games this weekend was 13 points, while the other games were decided by 18,
20, and 25 points.

Just like last year, though, my Chiefs and Skip's Steelers are in the NFL's Elite Eight. Sadly, only one of us will make it to the Final Four, since our teams must play each other next Sunday at Arrowhead...

"So, even if the Chiefs win you're going to be bummed, right?"

Skip's team has won six Super Bowls in the 47 years since my Chiefs won theirs,
so I wouldn't be that bummed...

Vehicle Nostalgia

1993 Ford Ranger
The years I spent selling Fords coincided with a time when the list of best-selling vehicles in America was dominated by the brand (Taurus, Tempo, Escort, F-Series, Bronco, Explorer, and Ranger were all sales leaders).

I did well as a car salesman, but
it certainly helped to be selling the most popular product line...

1992 Ford Bronco

Most of those Ford models are long gone, of course, but this morning brings the news that at least two of them will be making a comeback.

"Great news! Now you'll finally be able to haul your boat!"

I might have a boat by the time the new Bronco rolls out, wise could happen...

You Guys Are WAY Too Late

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...

One of my favorite things about being a Ford salesman was getting to drive new cars
I'd normally never have a chance to own myself, especially their sportier offerings. While Ford's sporty Mustang was more popular, for me their best coupe was the Thunderbird.
I always enjoyed having one for my demo, although at that point in my life such a car was wholly impractical.

Both of those nameplates were wildly popular in the days of car songs and surf music,
of course, so my fondness for those things during my formative years no doubt had something to do with it.

Original 1964 45 rpm single

The most famous appearance of the Thunderbird coupe in rock and roll is undoubtedly The Beach Boys' iconic 1964 hit "Fun Fun Fun,"
in which a teenage girl uses trickery to get the keys to her dad's T-Bird.

The song peaked at No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart,
and has been used countless times in TV and movie productions since then. It was and remains a staple
of the band's live performances.

Today's send-off is the 2012 stereo remaster of the original monaural track, included
on the band's 50th anniversary compilation 50 Big Ones, from their YouTube channel. Enjoy...

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