When I was growing up (in Arizona) my father made certain to show me evidence of Western history and culture. Western as in cowboy. 50s/60s TV helped. Not balanced or historically correct.
Part of what was taught to me was the difference between Cochise and Geronimo. Cochise initially fought the incursion of people from the East Coast, but eventually acceded to what was called manifest destiny and gave up. I was taught he was a great hero of his people. (See the 1950 film Broken Arrow for the politically-correct story).
But Geronimo was another matter. A warrior to the end, he never gave up fighting for his people, and was eventually captured and made a prisoner of war. He died in captivity. Some say he was murdered. I was taught he was a rebel and criminal who deserved what he got. We called these battles The Indian Wars.
Between the Indians co-existing with us as citizens, having their own ‘nations’, and being given special status and benefits from the government (based largely on our guilt for never honoring treaties and mistreatment of them), AND, the ever-popular meme of Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s The Noble Savage (the idea that as they were primitive cultures they were automatically more pure than we ‘cultured’ euro-trash) it’s a pretty complex relationship. Until the 1700s, many conquering forces simply eliminated those who didn’t assimilate. Less complex but barbaric. We did do some of that.
Special status, in spite of the whole melting pot meme; E Pluribus Unum, and equal rights for all. Some people are more equal than others.
Purportedly, Geronimo’s last words…
“I should have never surrendered. I should have fought until I was the last man alive.”
As a youth, I admired Cochise for his peaceable acquiescence to federal government authority. I tend to be siding more with Geronimo, now.
h/t Wikipedia, IMDB
When I was growing up, there was a television show called The Millionaire. In the show, personal representative of millionaire J. Beresford Tipton (Michael Anthony) doled out one million dollars to a worthy nobody every week. Of course, the plot revolved around how this windfall affected their life. At the time, one million dollars was a lot of money. The only caveat was the recipient was to agree never to reveal the source of their new wealth. I suspect the IRS wasn’t involved in this agreement.
Today is St. Valentine’s Day*, a day I loathe, as I’m alone. Obviously, if there was someone in my life, celebrating it would be terrific. But alas…
I was preparing dinner last night, when the doorbell rang. It was the UPS guy. He presented me with a small, heavy package. I hurriedly opened it and discovered a surprise!
NO, it wasn’t one million dollars, but rather a serious amount of ammunition in the calibers I own and shoot! Accompanying the ammo was a note. Obviously someone reads this blog, read I am ‘ammo poor’ and took it upon themself to send me a gift of reloads! How cool is THAT?
I don’t know how soon I’ll be able to go shooting, again, but it’s nice knowing people whom I’ve never met are kind enough to send me gifts. I’m quite moved and humbled. And now more sufficiently armed.
And as I’ve no way to thank them personally, I’m posting about it. And, I’ll never reveal the source. Part of my agreement.
You never saw a happier worthy nobody!*I’ve asked this before – WHY is it just Valentine’s Day, unless one references the massacre? It’s not Patrick’s Day?
The other day, I placed a YouTube video of Dave Brubeck’s music to connect with the jazz master’s passing. Then, I put The Addams Family TV show theme song on my blog’s You Tube link.
Music from my youth. And it got me thinking. Where did most of the tunes with which I identified when I was a kid come from? Why, television, and movies, of course!
I always read TV credits as a kid. Hell, I still read them (and movie credits) now. Helps me to identify actors, directors, technical folks and music I like from the show. Or perhaps dislike.
I remember Frank DeVol. He did music for TV and the movies from the 40s into the 80s. Richard Diamond, My Three Sons, The Brady Bunch, even taking time out to conduct the orchestra for The Dirty Dozen! And many other works.
Then, there was Vic Mizzy. The poor man’s Frank DeVol. From the 60s to the 80s. Highlights include The Addams Family, Green Acres, The Munster’s Revenge, and even Quincy, M.E.
And Henry Mancini. Where do I start? Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Peter Gunn, Mr. Lucky. Hatari!
John Barry. James Bond movies.
Bernard Hermann. Hitchcock. Psycho. Vertigo.
I just can’t get into the truncated theme songs of today, with their rap/hip-hop motifs. If there even IS a theme song? Guess they’re just too expensive to produce.
Guess I’m old…
Out of the blue, in 1984, the absurdist comedy television show Night Court premiered. I was an immediate fan. It ran from 1984 to 1992.
As a semi-professional magician (in my youth), I really appreciated the casting of comic magician Harry Anderson as Judge Harold T. Stone. I met him at a friend’s funeral. He is a true gentleman – and very tall. And I grew to love John Larroquette as that horn-dog D. A. Dan Fielding. He, too is tall. And won FOUR Emmys in the role!
It’s coincidental I was preparing a post about Night Court when I found out the show’s creator and chief writer, Reinhold Weege, passed away December 1 at age 62.
You should go to the link below and read more about he and the show. The 80s were not that long ago, were they?
Whipped Cream Difficulties links to an L.A. Times story this morning…
Most of you know I’m not a sports fan. My father slept, ate, breathed, lived sports, so much to the degree that especially after my disability developed at age 12 (and I could no longer play sports with him) I became a sports orphan.
Regardless, I knew of Mr. Karras sporting prowess, and thoroughly enjoyed his comedic antics, especially as the lummox Mongo in Mel Brooks’ Blazing Saddles.
“Mongo just pawn in game of life.”
When I worked at the convenience store, I would sometimes avail myself of the paperback books for sale. The ‘lending library’ we clerks used to call it. George Plimpton’s book Mad Ducks and Bears spent much time on the education of Alex Karras, from a Mongo-like character to an erudite skilled actor and football player. It is also full of hilarious anecdotes. A worthy read, even for a non-sports person like myself.
We’re gonna miss the big guy.
Knuckledraggin’ My Life Away has an excellent post surrounding the history of the Revolutionary War guerilla fighter The Swamp Fox. You should go read it.
Sadly, most of my knowledge about him comes from the Walt Disney TV version (staring Leslie Nielsen), with it’s cheesy theme song:
“…Swamp Fox, Swamp Fox, hidin’ in the Glen…
He’ll run away to fight again!”
Even as a kid I joked that I, too, would have run away, if my name had been Francis Marion!
My roomie and I spend much of our free time watching television together. We enjoy many of the same shows (Criminal Minds, Pawn Stars, Suits, Covert Affairs et al). But, sometimes we opt to watch TV separately, because the other party doesn’t really like what’s on. And, sometimes, we note the other person is joining us and change the channel.
I went downstairs this morning and she was watching Real Time with Bill Maher. When he first started, I kinda liked him. He was quick, clever, funny, and identified himself as a libertarian (small L).
But, in recent years, he’s taken to following the Progressive mantra. If little government is good, more must be better. And he no longer sounds like a libertarian:
[Obama] just needs to drag them to it. Like I just said [the American people] are stupid. (emphasis Guffaw) Just drag them to this, get healthcare done, you know, with or without them. Make the gang of six an offer they can’t refuse. This Max Baucus guy, he needs to wake up tomorrow with an intern’s head in his bed… I’m serious.
Not exactly a libertarian, live-and-let-live, small, non-intrusive government kind of guy. A totalitarian dictator, perhaps. Or the Godfather.
So this morning Maher was doing an interview with Arianna Huffington. I don’t know if I would have preferred that traitorous bitch from Newsroom. Regardless, I went back upstairs. I had my laundry to fold.
Just to be fair, I no longer watch Bill O’Reilly, either. His sanctimony regarding ‘gun control’ after the Aurora shootings was over the top. I didn’t always agree with him, but at least he doesn’t just populate his show with sycophants or easy targets to blast. Perhaps a poor metaphor.
I’ve been told he sometimes now has Republicans on his show have their differing views. Too late – I’ve only seen him bring on RINOs to eviscerate them with his views. And, I’m not a Republican, anyway.
Those of you who know me know I was raised in the 50s and 60s by TV. It’s one reason I became a PI. Before I recently moved, I’d had basic cable for 10 years. Basic. No frills.
My roomie, being more of a television addict than I, had a satellite system. During my addition to the household, we upgraded it. We can now watch Underwater Argentinian Curling (while wearing bear suits) at 0300 broadcast in Swahili! Not really, but our choices are quite varied.
We’ve been watching much dysfunctional TV. Not as dysfunctional as the Kardashians or Jersey Shore, but there is some amusement and education.
We’ve been watching (among other things) Pawn Stars, Cajun Pawn Stars and Hardcore Pawn.
Pawn Stars is about the customers and staff in a prosperous Las Vegas pawn shop. Cajun is headquartered in Alexandria, Louisiana, and Hardcore hails from Detroit. All shops are family-owned and somewhat dysfunctional, but the real entertainment here is the customer base. The Louisiana folks seem to be the the most genteel and polite, with Las Vegas following and Detroit brings up the rear. It’s real culture shock to go from a customer in Alexandria exclaiming, “Thanks Mr. Jimmie, sorry we couldn’t do business!” to Detroit’s “Give me my m*****f***** money!”, followed by threats of violence.
Las Vegas and Alexandria occasionally brings in experts to value or grade such items as antique firearms or coins, before attempting a deal. Detroit seems to thrive more on showing both the family and customer dysfunction. I find that show in particular to be the most disturbing.
I come from a dysfunctional background. Perhaps not as bad as these folks, but enough to make me grimace. Perhaps I need to stick to Leave It To Beaver re-runs…
The Newsroom is a new television show on HBO. It is bright, clever, funny, dark, very well written and extremely politically slanted.
This is of no surprise, as the main force behind the production is Aaron Sorkin, who was responsible for The West Wing. Jake Tapper of ABC News criticized Sorkin’s partisanship: “they extol the Fourth Estate‘s democratic duty, but they believe that responsibility consists mostly of criticizing Republicans.” (Wiki)
The cast is first rate, mostly liberal or unknown actors (I’m specifically ignoring the head-of-the-network, played by an (in)famous treasonous bitch). Fortunately, she doesn’t get much air time.
I’ve seen three or four episodes. My new roomie is enamored with the show (she is more liberal than I). It does as expected, trashing conservative points of view while playing up ‘the issues’, all amongst the ongoing emotional soup of who’s doing who and who used to do who. Emotional hijinks ensue.
The episode I viewed Sunday night (from the dvr) was indicative of all of this. The prominent newsreader (played wonderfully by Jeff Daniels) trashes the NRA and gun owners fears about the current administration’s anti-gun agenda by showing how it has failed The Brady Bunch’s agenda. No mention was made of how they tried and failed to implement it, though, nor was Fast and Furious mentioned. To be fair, I think this was historically situated before F&F broke. Of course, one of the characters has a concealed weapon (a stainless PPK/s). There seemed to be some confusion whether or not is was a .38 or a .32. This after two characters ‘unloaded’ it and crossed each other. And the episode ends with the Gabby Gifford shooting story breaking.
That’s the best part of the show – how the newsroom operates chasing a breaking news story and confirming it before broadcast. There is less of the propagandistic fa-de-rall one sees during the interaction between the characters when they are verbally sniping at each other, drinking or smoking marijuana.
After all, this IS The Newsroom.
I give it a B+ for the parts I like, C+ overall. If you can ignore the NY, East Coast, elitist, slanted points-of-view expressed, you might enjoy it, too! – Guffaw
An occasional blog reader (and a good friend) sent me a link to a news story.
The theme surrounds an algorithm via computer, touted to predict crime ‘hotspots’ before crime occurs, so that patrol officers can ‘disrupt’ the activity, perhaps even before a crime happens.
As it states in the article:
The software generates prediction boxes – as small as 500 square feet – on a patrol map. When officers have spare time, they are told to “go in the box.”
The goal is not to boost the number of arrests, a common police benchmark to reflect crime reduction. Officers want to either intercept a crime in progress or deter would-be criminals.
“I want to disrupt an activity before an arrest is made,” Malinowski said. “You can’t arrest your way out of some of these problems.”
Police say they are having success with a computer algorithm model that helps determine where to send officers to prevent or possibly interrupt a crime, which may serve as a model for other cash-strapped law-enforcement agencies.
As a fan of television procedural crime drama, the show Person of Interest came to his mind. And, after reading the article, it did to mine, also.
Can Minority Report be far behind?
Another Hollywood reference then came to mind, “
Badges Constitution? We don’ need no stinking badges Constitution!”
h/t Kevin, The Durango Herald