Blog 134 Diversions
Time flies. Like fireflies, time lights up and disappears. No heavy news to report, so here are some things on my mind, either here or next time:
Words and music
San Antonio Monopoly
The Case of the Lost Mask
Music with words:
It seems that today everyone needs to listen to music all the time. People wear earbuds and stream music into the ears and brain and each has a playlist of favorites. I don’t, except when in the car with the radio tuned in. The other day, Cole Porter’s great song “Anything Goes” played and the words struck a chord regarding our society today. Quoting one verse:
In olden days, a glimpse of stocking
Was looked on as something shocking
But now, God knows
Good authors, too, who once knew better words
Now only use four-letter words
Keep in mind that the above was written in eighty-odd years ago. The title perfectly describes our society today, when obscenities screamed from the silver screen, television and newspapers make no apologies over vulgarities, and books let us visualize the words.
In 1959, a shipmate invited several of us to weekend at his home in Hickory, North Carolina. The novel The Spanish Gardner
by D.H. Lawrence had recently been republished and was being banned everywhere in the US. The book was racy for the time but oh so tame by today’s standards. One evening in Hickory, we sat around the kitchen table in a discussion with our host’s sister, Susie. She was an English professor at a local college. Susie maintained that we should be free and comfortable to use profane words in casual conversation and not be chagrined. I was not convinced then and not now, although our sensibilities are deadened by constantly being bombarded with profanities that no longer have meaning and no longer shock.
I have two books to recommend, neither filled with four letter words. First is The Thursday Murder Club, in which the characters are just like us—septuagenarians and octogenarians. It takes place in a posh retirement community in England and is filled with laughs and good manners. No four-letter words, but good observations and philosophy. For example, one proclaims that if one is in professional sports today, it is mandatory to get covered in tattoos. It is well written by an English television writer.
The second book someone gave to me: Murder on the Riverwalk. Yes, it takes place on our SA Riverwalk and is full of references to places and streets around town. It is not a bad book and again pretty much devoid of four-letter words.
And ends the discourse about authors who once knew better words. Next time I will tell how I learned the origin of the f-bomb from Bishop Pike in a church service.
If you want to listen to Ella Fitzgerald sing Anything Goes, click here:
San Antonio Monopoly:
Parker Brothers has announced a new Monopoly version featuring San Antonio place names and streets. I suspect Boardwalk will become Broadway, and the missions will replace the railroads, we will see Houston and Commerce Streets. I believe people can send in suggestions. I thought of sending Stutts Street. Truly, Stutts Street does exist somewhere near the Freeman Coliseum, believe it or not.
Below is a cartoon someone sent across the internet. It may not show up when the blog is posted. If not, it says “My wife asked me why I spoke so softly in the house. I said I was afraid Mark Zuckerberg was listening! She laughed. I laughed. Alexa laughed. Siri laughed.”
There is so much truth in the fact that business and our government know all about our movements, our habits, and some of our thoughts, just by what we post on social media or check out on internet. Shades of Big Brother from George Orwell’s 1984.
Will wrap this blog up and continue next time with Texas Boasts, The Case of the Lost Mask, maybe more words and music, and what Bishop Pike taught me about the origin of the F-bomb.