Monthly archive for November2014

No doubt coming soon to a theater near you…

No doubt coming soon to a theater near you…

…I hope.

Short attention span theater

Short attention span theater

I’m not sure what country this happens in as I don’t recognize the language, but this is apparently some kind of dog competition where the dog must race through a short obstacle course of distractions.  The first two participants do very well.  Then it’s the Golden Retriever’s turn… and then lets just say that hilarity ….squirrel!

Music Friday – 1968 Number One Weirdness Edition

Music Friday – 1968 Number One Weirdness Edition

In my previous post I mentioned that on the 1968 BillBoard Hot 100 chart there were five songs that each spent four consecutive weeks or more at #1.  And in keeping with the weirdness of the time, there were some good ones and some  weird ones.  You know me well enough by now to know that you are about to hear….

The weird (five weeks at #1):

The less weird (four weeks at #1):

The sweet (five weeks at #1):

And the stereotypical 60’s (five weeks at #1):

Natural situation for a man to be free.  Damn straight.  Til next time…Peace In the Valley!

Music Friday – 1968 BillBoard Hot 100 Edition

Music Friday – 1968 BillBoard Hot 100 Edition

The project to determine my peak music year continues this week with a look at the 1968 BillBoard Hot 100.  If you want to recap 1965, 66 and 67 you can click here.

For the first time so far in this endeavor, the winner of the round not only had the most songs at the #1 position, but also the most overall time spent at #1 as well.  1968 was an interesting year, as there were five individual songs that each spent four consecutive weeks or more at #1, not including one of the songs by this year’s winner that spent nine consecutive weeks at #1.  Dying of suspense?  OK, I’ll have mercy and announce the winner as…The Beatles!  Somewhat anti-climactic, isn’t it?  The Beatles had two songs that made #1 in 1968;  Hello Goodbye which spent 2 weeks at #1 (after having spent time at #1 the previous year also) and Hey Jude which spent an amazing nine consecutive weeks at #1.  So here you go.

Hello Goodbye, two weeks at #1

And Hey Jude, nine weeks at #1

Another interesting thing about Hey Jude is that it bucked the AM Radio format of the two and a half minute song, as it clocked in at a little over seven minutes, almost four minutes of which is “Na Na Na Na-na-na-na”.  As I mentioned in one of the earlier posts, it is possible The Beatles dominated the chart until their breakup in 1970 (I don’t know for sure – I have not cheated and looked ahead).  They’ve won every year now 1965 through 68.  I guess we’ll find out together.

I mentioned that there were five songs that each spent four consecutive weeks or more at #1.  One of them is instantly recognizable as one of the best songs of the sixties…period.  I’ll just tell you the name of the artist:  Otis Redding.  Now listen:

A note of irony in that the song did not reach #1 until after Otis Redding’s death that year in a plane crash, the first posthumous #1 song in BillBoard Hot 100 history.  Too bad.

Oh…also…Sittin’ On The Dock Of The Bay is two minutes and forty two seconds long.  So it also bucked the two-and-a-half minute format.  Just by a lot less.   See you next week when we wrap up the sixties with The 1969 BillBoard Hot 100.  See ya!

I told you so

I told you so

Remember when I said that the future could get weird, the I said that it would definitely get weird and you didn’t believe me?

very weird robot

I told you so.

You’re Welcome!

Music Friday – Make Good Edition

Music Friday – Make Good Edition

I owe someone an apology.  That someone is…or rather those someones are The Young Rascals.  In the last post I omitted them from the groups that had songs that spent four weeks at #1 on the 1967 BillBoard Hot 100.  Their song Groovin’ spent four weeks at #1, though not consecutively.  It was at #1 for two weeks on two occasions for a total of four weeks.  So four weeks.  Here you go:

Music Friday – 1967 BillBoard #1 Longevity Edition

Music Friday – 1967 BillBoard #1 Longevity Edition

Hi there.  In the previous post (scroll down) I had  mentioned that although The Beatles had the most #1 songs on the 1967 BillBoard Hot 100 chart, there were other songs that accumulated more time at the #1 position that year than any of the Beatles’ tunes.  In fact there were quite a few individual songs that year that each spent more time at #1 than all the Beatle’s songs combined.  Let me break that down for you.

As we go along here, note that you can click on each song title to hear it, and click on the group or artist’s name to go to their WikiPedia page.  Now back to our story.  The three Beatles tunes, Penny Lane, All You Need is Love and Hello Goodbye  each spent one week at #1 for a total of three weeks.  In 1967 there were two individual songs by other artists that each spent three weeks at #1 – Happy Together by The Turtles and Light My Fire by The Doors.  Obviously, both songs have endured to this day, especially the Doors’ tune which is one of the iconic sixties rock songs of all time.

In 1967 there were five individual songs that spent four weeks each at the #1 spot.  A couple of these you’ll recognize, the others will have to be resurrected from the grooveyard of forgotten favorites.  First, the familiars.   The “Gimme a ticket for an aeroplane” song,  The Letter by The Boxtops, (no Wiki page for The Boxtops, so link goes to Google search) held the top spot for four weeks September 23rd through October 14th, and Daydream Believer by The Monkees which sat at #1 for four weeks from December 2nd through December 23rd.  The other songs that occupied the top spot for four weeks apiece were…brace yourselves… Somethin’ Stupid by Nancy and Frank Sinatra, Windy by The Association and Ode To Billy Joe by Bobbie Gentry.  That last one is a humdinger.

Now we’re getting to the meat and potatoes.  This next song spent five weeks at #1.  It was on the soundtrack of a popular movie that year which starred Sidney Poitier.  The song and the movie shared the same title.  Can you guess?  For this we must again go back to the grooveyard to find…

To Sir With Love by Lulu:

Finally, this next song is by a group that I suspect may be dominating the chart for at least the next couple Music Fridays.  This song sat atop the BillBoard Hot 100 for six weeks in 1967.  Can you believe it?  It’s true…

I’m a Believer by The Monkees

So there you go.  1967 was quite a trip and I didn’t even get into the three songs that spent two weeks apiece at #1.  Click on this link to see the chart for yourself.  Hope you enjoyed our trip.  See you next week and remember:  Don’t be trippin’!

Music Friday – 1967 BillBoard Hot 100 Edition

Music Friday – 1967 BillBoard Hot 100 Edition

Here is this week’s installment in my “peak music year” discovery project.  Recall that I am reviewing the BillBoard Hot 100 charts from 1965 to 1975 to determine the group or artist that had the most #1 songs during those periods.  If you’d like to review quickly, you can read my previous posts here:

Music Friday – 1966 BillBoard Hot 100 Edition

Music Friday 1965 – BillBoard Hot 100 Edition

OK.  All caught up?  Good.  Now on to 1967.  Before I unveil the group that had the most #1 songs on the BillBoard Hot 100 chart that year, I have an observation to make.  In 1967, there were several songs that had long stretches at the #1 position, so while the “winner” this year again had the most songs to hit #1, there were other artists that had fewer songs hit #1, but their songs held more weeks at #1 than the winner.  I’ll explain further at the end of the post.

The envelope please….and the winner is…The Beatles!  I told you last week that I sensed a pattern, and it continues this year too.  The Beatles had three #1 songs in 1967:  Penny Lane, All You Need Is Love and Hello Goodbye, the most of any group or artist that year.  Each song was at the #1 position for one week, a total of three weeks.  Here they are:

Penny Lane, #1 the week of March 18th, 1967

All You Need is Love, #1 the week of August 19th, 1967

And finally we closed the year out with Hello Goodbye, #1 the week of December 30th 1967

I mentioned there were songs by other artists that spent longer at the #1 position than the three Beatles songs combined.  The longest running #1 song that year was six weeks at #1, and another song sat at #1 for five weeks.  Not only that, there were five different songs that held #1 for four week stints and a smattering of songs that stayed at #1 for three weeks apiece.  What were those songs?  I’ll tell you…in the next installment.  You won’t want to miss it so stay tuned!

Old and Busted: Kids “Play Doctor”; New Hotness: Kids “Commit Sexual Assault”

Old and Busted: Kids “Play Doctor”; New Hotness: Kids “Commit Sexual Assault”

This has been in my draft folder for a couple months.  In light of the recent Lena Dunham kerfuffle, I decided to finish it up and post it.  If you don’t know what the Lena Dunham kerfuffle is, keep reading.

One of Life’s cliches is the occasional episode of kids “playing doctor”, which is considered innocent exploration under most circumstances such as when the participants are very young, all approximately the same age, none are coerced, and when there is no overt attempt at sexual stimulation or gratification.

In November of 2011 in Grant County Wisconsin, felony sexual assault charges were brought against a 6 year old boy for an incident of playing doctor.  If the details of this story are true then playing doctor appears to be what happened, yet the Grant County District Attorney opted to charge the 6 year old “perpetrator” with first degree felony sexual assault.  The kids involved even said they were playing “butt doctor”, and the parents of the “perpetrator” (scare quotes intentional) said their son had recently been to the doctor and had his little bottom examined and had an enema.  So it’s not surprising that he might want to reenact the event, this time as the examiner rather that the examinee.  The charge of sexual assault was levied because the perpetrator is alleged to have inserted his finger into the victim’s anus, though the victim denies this.  According to the article, penetration of any kind is defined by Wisconsin law as “sexual intercourse”, and so the way the prosecutor sees it sexual intercourse occured and a Judge affirmed there was probable cause for the charge to stand.

Since I’m not an attorney, nor am I familiar with Wisconsin law, I have a few questions.  What is the rationale behind charging a six year old with such a crime?  Doesn’t there have to be some form of intent behind a crime, and can a six year old form that intent?  These questions will not be answered because this case was settled by a consent decree and so was never adjudicated.

Which brings us to…Lena Dunham, star of the HBO series Girls, during which Dunham apparently spends a lot of time being randomly naked.  Disclaimer: I have never seen, nor will I likely ever see an episode of Girls.  Nowadays in current pop culture, persons with…*ahem*…unique personalities are routinely celebrated, and Dunham is no exception – she is the poster child of the “accept me for who I am without judgement”movement and for some reason has become a feminist icon.  Anyway, someone convinced her that it would be a good idea for her to write her autobiography.  She did so and it was published.  Via her own words, we learn that her upbringing was atypical, being the spoiled daughter of rich Manhattanite artist parents:  father, Carroll Dunham and mother Laurie Simmons.  And we also learn of several instances of Dunham’s…uhh…”exploration” of her little sister’s genitals.  Dunham herself described her behavior as that of a “sexual predator” which she now claims was an attempt at humor.  For her part, her now grown sister Grace claims no harm done.  Controversy arose when certain journalists read her book, and expressed opinions that her exploits with her younger sibling may have amounted to child abuse if not outright sexual assault.  Those parties have been characterized in the media as being “on the right” which is code for “religious busybodies who want to get involved in everyone’s business”, but I have seen concern regarding Dunham’s actions come from all sides of the political spectrum.  Dunham has now threatened to sue some of the journalists for falsely defaming her, though they claim they were only quoting her work verbatim.  So we’ll have the law involved here, too.

I guess it’s time to make my point.  While I am always up for some good old pop culture bashing, I’m having a hard time getting on this particular bandwagon.  The original notion of this post was that little kids do stuff, usually innocently.  They always have and I suspect they always will, and adults didn’t make a huge deal out of it in the past, but seem more eager to make a big deal of it now.  Maybe this is happening because of a perceived coarsening of our culture combined with a belief in a need to be more vigilant in protecting the innocent.  The point of my “Old and Busted…New Hotness” posts is generally that American society, if not human society as a whole is going straight to hell in a handbasket, so let me be clear that I still think that’s true.  But throwing charges of sexual assault around at children isn’t going to slow the descent.

Childhood “exploration” may be common, but it is not universal.  People who did experience it seem not to be harmed by it, while people who did not experience it are revolted and disgusted by it.  I doubt that anyone thinks it’s a good topic to bring up in a public forum.  Unless you like a good kerfuffle.

That’s a real headline, folks

That’s a real headline, folks

Manager of Fukuoka Owl Cafe Alleged in Prostitution Ring

I’ve heard of a Bunny Ranch, but an Owl Cafe?  Where did this happen?  Oh.  Japan.  That explains a lot – but not everything.  The link goes to a story at The Tokyo Reporter, which from appearances seems to cover the Tokyo Hooker beat.  In reading the story, we learn that there was no connection between the Owl Cafe and the prostitution ring other than the fact that the manager of the Owl Cafe was (allegedly) involved in the prostitution ring whereby an outcall “delivery health” business delivered prostitutes to “love hotels” in order to…*ahem*…conduct business.  I am not making this up.

OK, so it’s the world’s oldest profession.  We all understand how that works.  What I want to know is, what the heck is an Owl Cafe?  Not THE Owl Cafe, rather AN Owl Cafe.  Turns out an Owl Cafe is a little restaurant featuring several varieties of Owls that may be “handled by customers”.  Managed by a prostitution ring leader.  Riiiiight.  Well, everybody knows that what happens in Fukuoka stays in Fukuoka.

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