Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Look Out, Kid

Doing Without

The latest bit of silly, tiresome progressive street theatre (but then I repeat myself) is the absurd "Day Without 
a Woman" nonsense happening today.

As near as I can tell, these silly females are determined to prove how valuable they are by...not doing a lick of work. Seems like an odd way to make a point, especially when
it will inconvenience a whole bunch of people (half of them women) and accomplish nothing. Wouldn't it better make the point to actually show up for work and kick ass
at your job, whatever it might be? Or is that just the testosterone talking?

Also, they want free abortions and birth control and stuff. Duly noted...

"Say, don't you have 'Day Without a Woman Day' every day?"

You are skating on thin ice, my friend...

Feast Day

Statue in St. Peter's Basilica, Rome
Today is the feast day of St. John of God,
a Spanish soldier who upon leaving the military retired to live a quiet life. He was so inspired by a speech by St. John of Ávila, though, that he decided to dedicate the rest of his life to helping the poor and the sick.

John gathered a small group of like- minded men to aid in this cause, a group which eventually became a religious order, Brother Hospitallers of Saint John of God. The order now ministers to the poor and the sick in 46 countries around the world.

One of the most revered Spanish saints, John of God is the patron of hospitals and nurses, the sick and the mentally ill, those suffering from alcoholism, and booksellers (due to his practice of selling books to raise money to fund his ministry).

(No) Surprise Update

"I'm happy to pitch anywhere they send me."

We've reached the point in spring training where my beloved Kansas City Royals start sending players out to the minor league camp, mostly pitchers. It is tough to find enough innings for pitchers in the big-league camp.

The Royals announced today that they'd be sending top pitching prospects Josh Staumont and Kyle Zimmer to the minor league camp, along with 7 other players.

This is hardly a surprise, as Zimmer is coming off of a significant injury and Staumont isn't even on the team's 40-man roster. They both need regular work, which is easier to come by at the minor league camp.

"So how come you haven't written anything about the Royals lately?"

You know the go peddle your papers...

Feminine Side

From the Jeff MacNelly-created comic strip Shoe, now being produced by Gary Brookins and Jeff's widow Susie.

Until Next Time...

For a variety of reasons, Bob Dylan and his music were never as important in my life
as you might think, given that I'm a child of the '60s. A lot of it has to due with timing.

When Dylan first turned up as a folkie in 1962 my main musical interests were whatever my parents were listening to, mostly jazz and vocal pop. The only time
I listened to music on the radio was in the car, if there wasn't a ballgame on. The first Dylan song I remember encountering was "Blowin' in the Wind," which we were taught by a nun in choir class in 4th or 5th grade.

By the time Dylan was making a big commercial splash in the mid-60s I was heavily into rock music, not folk, and bands like The Beach Boys, The Beatles, The Monkees, and other artists I enjoyed were releasing albums two or three times a year. And when I finally decided to take a deep dive into his music when I bought his multi-platinum-selling 1967 compilation Bob Dylan's Greatest Hits (an album pretty much everyone
I knew had a copy of), he was making his turn into country music with John Wesley Harding and Nashville Skyline. I didn't follow. When I got into folk music (mostly trying to woo girls who liked folk music, though I grew to love it myself over time),
it was Simon & Garfunkel, Donovan, Judy Collins, and Joni Mitchell (who happened
to be one of my late first wife's favorites when we met).

I started paying serious attention to Top 40 radio in 6th grade, and not long after that Dylan scored his first Billboard 200 Top 10 album as well as his first Billboard Hot 100 Top 40 single.

Original 1965 45 rpm single
On March 8, 1965 Bob released "Subterranean Homesick Blues"
as the lead single from his new album Bringing It All Back Home. The album peaked at No. 6 on the Billboard 200, and that first single reached No. 39 on the Hot 100 Singles chart, which was Dylan's first appearance there.

Bob was never that interested in radio airplay, but he did wind up charting 11 more Top 40 singles
in his career, including four Top 10 hits. He never scored a No. 1 single.

Noted filmmaker D.A. Pennebaker shot a documentary of Dylan's 1965 British tour in support of the album. Released in 1967, the film included a stylized, whimsical scene
in a London alley with Dylan flipping cards with lyrics from "Subterranean..." printed on them. This scene is cited as a major influence on the music video culture which sprang up in the early '80s.

Today's send-off is that amusing video version of Dylan's first signature song, from his VEVO channel. Enjoy...

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