Monday, January 23, 2017

Play It, Sam

No Man's Land

The weather today is gray and overcast, but it's one of those January days where the weather is neither bad nor good.

We're supposed to get some more rain on Tuesday, and possibly a bit of light snow on Wednesday, but for the most part this is what the rest of January will be like: Walking the fine line between pleasant (sunshine, temperatures in the 40s to 50s) and unpleasant (bitter cold, precipitation).

All things considered it has been a mild winter to this point, and I know things could be much worse, but at the same time I'm not loving this gray, gloomy, borderline weather.

"You know February is going to totally kick our asses, right?"

February is usually the worst month of winter in this part of the country, but we'll see...

Say a Prayer

Today Catholics observe the annual
Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection 
of Unborn Children.

The date for this observance each year is January 22, except in those years when January 22 is a Sunday, as it is in 2017. In those instances, the observance takes place on January 23.

Continued emphasis on protecting the unborn is necessary, of course, because the progressive left and its enablers in the mainstream media continue to insist that abortion-on-demand is a key element of women's equality...

A Classic Debuts

Original 1943 "one sheet" poster

On January 23, 1943 the legendary Michael Curtiz film Casablanca opened
in theaters across the country.

Despite the presence of big-name stars Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, the film was only a modest box office success at the time.

The members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences knew a classic when they saw one, though. Casablanca won the Best Picture Oscar, as well as
Best Director for Curtiz and Best Adapted Screenplay for Julius and Philip Epstein and Howard Koch (the script was based
on the un-produced stage play Everybody Comes to Rick's).

Opinions vary on whether it is the best movie ever made, but there is no denying that
it is chock full of iconic scenes and especially dialogue that have become part of our cultural vocabulary.

"The problems of three little people don't amount to a hill of ants in this crazy world."

Pretty sure that's not what he said...

Just Like At the Grocery Store

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...

Today was one of those days when a song I hadn't heard in years popped up while
I was watching a favorite TV show, triggering a flood of memories both pleasant and not so pleasant.

The eponymous debut album by rock band Foreigner was released in late March 1977, and its first single, the romantic "Feels Like the First Time," was all over rock radio while I was busy interviewing for teaching jobs in the Kansas City area. By the time the album's second single, "Cold As Ice," was released in July I was a widower preparing
to start my first teaching position. The album's third single failed to chart.

Original 1977 45 rpm single
The song I heard this morning that brought back all those memories was "Long, Long Way From Home," the album's fourth single release.
It was used as incidental music in the "Good God, Y'all" episode of
the TV series Supernatural, which
I happened to watch this morning.

When the single was first released
in November 1977 I was nearly halfway through my first year
of classroom teaching, so the song's lyrics about pursuing career goals at the cost of loneliness and alienation resonated with me. The song peaked at No. 20 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Today's send-off is the 2008 remastered version of the original hit single, from the band's YouTube channel. Enjoy...

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