Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A Pilkington Filler

Karl Pilkington - "It's like I said...."

On Art - "Stop looking at the walls, look out the window." 

On Biology - On dopplegangers - "How would I know which one I was?"

On Christmas - "That's what I'm saying about Christmas, I might not be in the mood for it; December 25th" 

On Life - "I look at life like a big book and sometimes you get half way through it and go 'Even though I've been enjoying it, I've had enough. Give us another book'" 

On Travel - "Neil Armstrong, that spaceman, he went to the moon but he ain't been back. It can't have been that good." 

Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day Remembrance - My Uncle John

Sgt. John Guess, Jr. - Distinguished Service Cross
Awarded for actions during the World War I

The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 9, 1918, takes pride in presenting the Distinguished Service Cross (Posthumously) to Sergeant John Guess, Jr. (ASN: 2367259), United States Army, for extraordinary heroism in action while serving with Company H, 364th Infantry Regiment, 91st Division, A.E.F., near Eclisfontaine, France, 28 September 1918. Assisted by another sergeant, and leading a combat group across an open valley under constant hostile fire, Sergeant Guess completed the capture of four machine-gun nests and three prisoners. He was seriously wounded in the encounter and died soon afterwards.

Service: Army

Rank: Sergeant

War Department, General Orders No. 21 (1919)

Rolling Thunder

Ms. Palin took to the road this past weekend... hmm kicking off a presidential bid???? Well I don't know about you but when I hear THUNDER I think DYLAN.... So roll on Sarah and if you meet up with Bob along the way tell him I say "hello". DYLAN FOR PRESIDENT! Oh, Yes.

Thunder on the mountain, and there's fires on the moon
A ruckus in the alley and the sun will be here soon
Today's the day, where I'm gonna grab my trombone and blow
Well, there's hot stuff here and it's everywhere I go

I was thinking about Alicia Keys, couldn't keep from crying
When she was born in Hell's Kitchen, I was living down the line
I'm wondering where in the world Alicia Keys could be
I been looking for her even clear through Tennessee

Feel like my soul is beginning to expand
Look into my heart and you will sort of understand
You brought me here, now you're trying to turn me away
The writing on the wall, come read it, come see what it does say

Thunder on the mountain, rolling like a drum
Going to sleep over there, that's where the music is coming from
I don't need any guide, I already know the way
Remember this, I'm your servant both night and day

The pistols are popping and the power is down
I'd like to try something but I'm so far from town
The sun keeps shining and the North Wind keeps picking up speed
Gonna forget about myself for a while, gonna go out and see what others need

I've been sitting down studying the art of love
I think it will fit me like a glove
I want some real good woman to do just what I say
Everybody got to wonder what's the matter with this cruel world today

Thunder on the mountain rolling to the ground
Gonna get up in the morning walk the hard road down
Some sweet day I'll stand beside my King
I wouldn't betray your love or any other thing

Gonna raise me an army, some tough sons of bitches
I'll recruit my army from the orphanages
I been to St. Herman's church, said my religious vows
As I've sucked the milk out of a thousand cows

I've got the pork chops, she's got the pie
She ain't no angel and neither am I
Shame on your greed, shame on your wicked schemes
I'll say this, I don't give a damn about your dreams

Thunder on the mountain heavy as can be
Mean old twister bearing down on me
All the ladies in Washington scrambling to get out of town
Looks like something bad is going to happen, better roll your airplane down

Everybody going and I want to go too
Don't wanna take a chance with somebody new
I did all I could, I did it right there and then
I've already confessed, no need to confess again

Gonna make a lot of money, gonna go up North
I'll plant and I'll harvest what the earth brings forth
The hammer's on the table, the pitchfork's on the shelf
For the love of God, you ought to take pity on yourself.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Holiday Weekend Fun

When you are out and about this weekend trying to enjoy a nice little three day holiday and find yourself grumbling about near $4 per gallon gasoline prices, consider the above prices. These are all items you use or have used at least a few times but probably never thought of their cost in per gallon terms.
Maybe you will want to cancel plans for this weekend's BBQ when you find that your favorite coke brand is as costly as gas. Or maybe you will decide sandals are out this summer and keep the tennies on are forgo the $1,024 per gallon price of nail polish.

Do all the people enjoying the lattes at their favorite coffeehouse have any idea they pay $32 a gallon for that enjoyable beverage? I bet there are one or two that actually do consume a gallon of coffee a day -  probably the same ones that drive those big gas guzzler cars.

So what's that I hear you saying? I only use such a tiny bit of nail polish... or really just a cup or two a month of my favorite latte... or a small glass of OJ each day. Exactly, the price per gallon becomes a factor only when we consume great quantities of  a product. Which is why I keep trying to bring home the point about our gas consumption - LESS IS BETTER. And if it takes gas at $10 or $15 a gallon to get us to rethink our driving habits then so be it.

Happy Holiday Folks.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Vincent Price - May 27, 1911

Born May 27, 1911 - St. Louis, Missouri

It's the 100th anniversary of the birth of Vincent Price. He appeared in many movies and in several stage productions I really liked House of Wax ('53) and The Fly ('58). How do you remember him?

Year Film Role Director
1938 Service De Luxe Robert Wade Rowland V. Lee
1939 The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex Sir Walter Raleigh Michael Curtiz
Tower of London Duke of Clarence Rowland V. Lee
1940 The Invisible Man Returns Geoffrey Radcliffe Joe May
Green Hell David Richardson James Whale
The House of the Seven Gables Clifford Pyncheon Joe May
Brigham Young Joseph Smith Henry Hathaway
1941 Hudson's Bay King Charles II Irving Pichel
1943 The Song of Bernadette Prosecutor Vital Dutour Henry King
1944 The Eve of St. Mark Pvt. Francis Marion John M. Stahl
Wilson William Gibbs McAdoo Henry King
Laura Shelby Carpenter Otto Preminger
The Keys of the Kingdom Angus Mealey John M. Stahl
1945 A Royal Scandal Marquis de Fleury Ernst Lubitsch, Otto Preminger
Leave Her to Heaven Russell Quinton John M. Stahl
1946 Shock Dr. Richard Cross Alfred L. Werker
Dragonwyck Nicholas Van Ryn Joseph L. Mankiewicz
1947 The Web Andrew Colby Michael Gordon
The Long Night Maximilian Anatole Litvak
Moss Rose Police Inspector R. Clinner Gregory Ratoff
1948 Up in Central Park Boss Tweed William A. Seiter
Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein The Invisible Man (voice only) Charles Barton
Rogues' Regiment Mark Van Ratten Robert Florey
The Three Musketeers Richelieu George Sidney
1949 The Bribe Carwood Robert Z. Leonard
Bagdad Pasha Ali Nadim Charles Lamont
1950 The Baron of Arizona James Addison Samuel Fuller
Champagne for Caesar Burnbridge Waters Richard Whorf
Curtain Call at Cactus Creek Tracy Holland Charles Lamont
1951 Adventures of Captain Fabian George Brissac William Marshall
His Kind of Woman Mark Cardigan John Farrow
1952 The Las Vegas Story Lloyd Rollins Robert Stevenson
1953 House of Wax Professor Henry Jarrod André De Toth
1954 Dangerous Mission Paul Adams Louis King
Born in Freedom: The Story of Colonel Drake Colonel Edwin L. Drake Arthur Pierson
Casanova's Big Night Casanova (uncredited) Norman Z. McLeod
The Mad Magician Don Gallico John Brahm
1955 Son of Sinbad Omar Khayyam Ted Tetzlaff
1956 Serenade Charles Winthrop Anthony Mann
While the City Sleeps Walter Kyne Fritz Lang
The Vagabond King Narrator (uncredited) Michael Curtiz
The Ten Commandments Baka Cecil B. DeMille
1957 The Story of Mankind The Devil Irwin Allen
1958 The Fly François Delambre Kurt Neumann
1959 House on Haunted Hill Frederick Loren William Castle
The Big Circus Hans Hagenfeld Joseph M. Newman
The Tingler Dr. Warren Chapin William Castle
Return of the Fly Francois Delambre Edward Bernds
The Bat Dr. Malcolm Wells Crane Wilbur
1960 House of Usher Roderick Usher Roger Corman
1961 Master of the World Robur William Witney
The Pit and the Pendulum Nicholas Medina
Sebastian Medina
Roger Corman
Nefertiti, Queen of the Nile Benakon Fernando Cerchio
Rage of the Buccaneers Romero Mario Costa
1962 Confessions of an Opium Eater Gilbert De Quincey Albert Zugsmith
Tales of Terror Locke
Fortunato Luchresi
M. Valdemar
Roger Corman
Convicts 4 Carl Carmer Millard Kaufman
Tower of London Richard of Gloucester Roger Corman
1963 The Raven Dr. Erasmus Craven Roger Corman
Diary of a Madman Simon Cordier Reginald Le Borg
Beach Party Big Daddy William Asher
The Haunted Palace Joseph Curwen
Charles Dexter Ward
Roger Corman
Twice-Told Tales Alex Medbourne
Dr. Rappaccini
Gerald Pyncheon
Sidney Salkow
1964 The Comedy of Terrors Waldo Trumbull Jacques Tourneur
The Last Man on Earth Dr. Robert Morgan Ubaldo Ragona
The Masque of the Red Death Prince Prospero Roger Corman
The Tomb of Ligeia Verden Fell Roger Corman
1965 War-Gods of the Deep Sir Hugh, The Captain Jacques Tourneur
Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine Dr. Goldfoot Norman Taurog
1966 Dr. Goldfoot and the Girl Bombs Dr. Goldfoot
General Willis
Mario Bava
1967 The Jackals Oupa Decker Robert D. Webb
The House of 1,000 Dolls Felix Manderville Jeremy Summers
1968 Spirits of the Dead Narrator
(English-language version)
Federico Fellini, Louis Malle,
Roger Vadim
Witchfinder General Matthew Hopkins Michael Reeves
More Dead Than Alive Dan Ruffalo Robert Sparr
1969 The Oblong Box Sir Julian Markham Gordon Hessler
The Trouble with Girls Mr. Morality Peter Tewksbury
1970 Scream and Scream Again Dr. Browning Gordon Hessler
Cry of the Banshee Lord Edward Whitman Gordon Hessler
Cucumber Castle Wicked Count Voxville Hugh Gladwish
1971 The Abominable Dr. Phibes Dr. Anton Phibes Robert Fuest
Here Comes Peter Cottontail January Q. Irontail Jules Bass, Arthur Rankin Jr.
Mooch Goes to Hollywood Himself Richard Erdman
What's a Nice Girl Like You...? Spevin Jerry Paris
1972 An Evening with Edgar Allan Poe Recitator Kenneth Johnson
Dr. Phibes Rises Again Dr. Anton Phibes Robert Fuest
1973 Theatre of Blood Edward Lionheart Douglas Hickox
1974 Madhouse Paul Toombes Jim Clark
Percy's Progress Stavos Mammonian Ralph Thomas
1975 Journey Into Fear Dervos Daniel Mann
1976 The Butterfly Ball Narrator Tony Klinger
1979 Scavenger Hunt Milton Parker Michael Schultz
1980 The Monster Club Eramus Roy Ward Baker
Pogo for President: 'I Go Pogo' The Deacon (voice only) Marc Paul Chinoy
1982 Vincent Narrator (voice only) Tim Burton
1983 House of the Long Shadows Lionel Grisbane Pete Walker
Michael Jackson's Thriller Narrator (voice only) John Landis
1984 Bloodbath at the House of Death Sinister Man Ray Cameron
Terror in the Aisles archival footage Andrew J. Kuehn
1985 The Little Troll Prince Ulvik #1 (voice only) Ray Patterson
1986 The Great Mouse Detective Professor Ratigan (voice only) Burny Mattinson, Ron Clements,
David Michener, John Musker
Escapes The Mailman David Steensland
1987 Sparky's Magic Piano Henry, Sparky's dad (voice only) Lee Mishkin
The Nativity King Herod (voice only) Don Lusk
The Whales of August Mr. Maranov Lindsay Anderson
From a Whisper to a Scream Julian White Jeff Burr
1988 Dead Heat Arthur P. Loudermilk Mark Goldblatt
1990 Catchfire Mr. Avoca Dennis Hopper
Edward Scissorhands The Inventor Tim Burton
1993 The Thief and the Cobbler Zig-Zag the Grand Vizier
(voice only, recorded 1967-1973)
Richard Williams

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

President Obama Does the Limbo Rock

Which brings up the question, "Is there a chiropractor in the house?"

I met President Obama in 2009 and I didn't get the impression that he was an uncaring or unfair person, in fact my thought was quite the opposite. So somewhere between where the person ends and politics begin things go wonky.

If things were ever going to get worked out between Israel and Palestine I thought it would have been under President Clinton's term - but it didn't happen. The differences between Israel and Palestine run, not so silent, and very deep. Here is a bit of that very long history:

Prior to 1917, the territory that is called Palestine or Israel was ruled by the Ottoman Turkish Empire, and included several sanjaks or districts. The name Palestine, that was used by Roman and Arab rulers, was revived by the British, who received a mandate from the League of Nations to administer Palestine as a national home for the Jewish people.

Palestine was a conventional name, others terms used for the same area were Canaan, Zion, the Land of Israel, Syria Palaestina, Southern Syria, Jund Filastin, Outremer, the Holy Land and the Southern Levant. These various names have been used between 450 BC to 1948 AD to describe a geographic region between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River as well as various adjoining lands.

The boundaries of the region have changed throughout history, and were first defined in modern times by the Franco-British boundary agreement (1920) and the Transjordan memorandum during the British Mandate for Palestine. Today, the region comprises the country of Israel and the Palestinian territories.

There is a lot that goes on here and it is very complicated. But I don't like the United States taking the side of a bully (Israel) any more than taking the side of a terrorist. The Palestinian side deserves to be heard. Palestine is not a terrorist, it is a people that desperately is trying to hang on to its shrinking boarders. 

Netanyahu on his recent visit to the US laid out clearly the demands:

  • Israel demands that Fatah tear up its accord with Hamas, which controls Gaza strip. Israel calls Hamas - Islamic Resistance Movement, the Palestinian version of al-Qaeda.
  • The Palestine refugees issue must be resolved outside of the borders of Israel.
  • Jerusalem must remain the united capital of Israel.
These are not words that convey to me a willingness to negotiate. In the meantime while Netanyahu visits American soil no news is aired about the attacks that are being made on innocent women and children by the IOF in the Sheikth Jarah suburb, Israel's hands are not squeaky clean. If negotiations are going to take place the United States should remain neutral and offer up concrete suggestions, but it looks like "our" mind is made up as well - this country is siding with Israel, right or wrong. Just another situation we can  look back on at some future date as a BIG mistake.

More on Israel:

Israel was created in 1948, after UN Resolution 181 partitioned the territory of the British Mandate for Palestine into two states for Jews and Palestinian Arabs. At the time, there were approximately 1.2 million Arabs and 650,000 Jews in all of Palestine. The Arabs objected to the creation of the Jewish state and fought a war against it. The Arab side lost the war, and the Palestinian state never really came into being. The territory allotted to the Palestinian state by the UN partition resolution was taken over by Israel and Jordan. About 780, 000 Palestinians became refugees, many of them living in the Gaza strip as well as in the West Bank. 

In 1967, Israel fought its Arab neighbors in the 6 day war after Egyptian President Gamal Nasser closed the straights of Tiran to Israeli ships and threatened a war to destroy Israel. Israel conquered all of the Sinai peninsula and Gaza strip that had been held by Egypt. After Jordan began firing on Israeli towns and took over the post of the UN Commissioner in Jerusalem, Israel attacked the Jordanian held West Bank. The Palestinians in those areas came under Israeli rule. Israel began to build Jewish settlements in these territories. In 1987, Palestinians began a rebellion against the Israeli occupation, the Intifada, but this had apparently failed by 1991. 

Beginning in 1993, the Oslo agreements promised gradual withdrawal of Israel from the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Palestinians were hopeful that this process would end in a state for them. However, following breakdown of the final status negotiations in the summer of 2000, riots erupted in September 2000. The tripwire for the violence, which had been brewing for some time,  was a visit by Israeli right wing political leader Ariel Sharon paid a controversial visit to the temple mount area, which includes the Al-Aqsa mosque, holy to Muslims, that stands on the site of the ancient Jewish temple. Palestinians refused to accept the agreement offered by US President Clinton in December 2000, and violence has continued since then. Israel has reoccupied nearly all the territory it had ceded to the Palestinians in the West Bank during the Oslo peace process, and continues to build settlements on Palestinian land. Election of relatively moderate Mahmoud Abbas as Palestinian Authority President and the Israeli disengagement plan (withdrawal from Gaza and four West Bank settlements) offer new hope of peace. 
The Palestinian areas account for about 2,800 square miles of the total territory of Israel. They have a population estimated at about 3 million, per capita GDP of under $2,000, literacy rate of about 86% and infant mortality of 33 per thousand. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

I Love Paris...

2011 French Open - Roland Garros

The last time I saw Paris...

The last time I saw Paris was eleven years ago and yes, I attended the French Open. Paris is a beautiful city and the tennis venue has to be one of the greatest in all of tennis. Roland Garros is nestled away in a little residential neighborhood. But if you think about it Paris is really of city of little neighborhoods.

Paris is a walking city and the French love to walk. I think that is why they can eat such marvelous food and stay wondrously slim. A meal in Paris is to be enjoyed, never hurried and experienced with good friends and a good wine. Even the smallest little cafe will offer up a delicious and savory meal.

Paris is a city filled with wonderful history and museums to nourish the mind and soul. It is a city that seems to never rush. There is always a beautiful fountain that will beckon you to sit awhile or the river Seine which flows through the city at an easy pace that calls you to its bank.

Europe Summer of 1955 - Artichoke Annie on the left

My first visit to Paris was in 1955, we spent a few days in the city, to cap off a summer spent attending classes at the University of Lausanne in Switzerland, before returning home to California. It's funny I remember my first and last trips to this city so very well, the in-between ones are bit of a blur, hmm perhaps like lovers.

Sometimes I think only young people should be allowed to travel to foreign countries, they are so accepting and non-judgmental. That first trip to Europe as a young student brings back vivid memories. I remember listening to the American tourists complaining of this and that and how everything back in the USA was better. Perhaps they should have stayed home. We had a ball and enjoyed hanging out with other students from the Sorbonne, in the Latin Quarter on the Left Bank of Paris. We did play tourist a bit if you count going to the Louvre as being touristy. We went to the famous cabaret Moulin Rouge - that experience certainly had this kid's eyes wide open, Can-Can dancers and the even more exciting and dramatic Apache dancers. Everything a kid dreamed of when thinking of Paris is those days.

But my last visit in 2000 was really the trip of a lifetime. I am an avid tennis fan and to attend the French Open was dream come true. I spent three weeks in France, first attending the opening days of the tennis tournament and then joined by my two daughters where we traveled to the Loire Valley exploring castles and countryside's and picnics along the way. It was just delightful.

The girls returned home and I was later met by my girlfriend. We attended the final two days of the French Open and then finished up the trip with several days on a leisurely barge trip on La Belle Epoque on a small river about an hour outside of Paris. What a perfect ending to a perfect Paris and French holiday.

... I am ready to do it all again.

Sunday, May 22, 2011


Byrd at Fenway Saturday Night

If it's not a curse it certainly is the worst damn luck you could ever imagine. The Cubs first visit to Boston in over ninety years... for Byrd he probably wouldn't have minded making it 100 years.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Just Checking...

Judgement Day - 6:35 pm central daylight time
Are you humans all still here?

Two Tickets to Paradise

For all of you that are about to board the Judgement Day train...

See ya, guys - safe journey. Don't worry about your pets they will be in good hands with me.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Yeah, that's the ticket !

Bachmann - For President
 Palin - For Vice President

The Pathological Liar Picks Up Jerry Hall

Bartender: What can I get you?

Jerry Hall: Uh.. I think I'll have a white wine spritzer. [ he places it on the counter and moves aside ] Can I get a light? [ pulls out a cigarette ]

Tommy Flanagan: [ swaying next to her with a cigarette lighter extended toward her ] I got it!

Jerry Hall: Thank you.

Tommy Flanagan: My name's Tommy, Dr. Tom.. uh.. Senator Tommy Flanagan.

Jerry Hall: Really?

Tommy Flanagan: Mmm hmm.. Say, haven't I seen you somewhere before?

Jerry Hall: I doubt it.

Tommy Flanagan: Oh, I know! I saw you at the.. White House! Yeah, that's the ticket. Why, I was just there last.. uh.. yesterday. Yeah.. having dinner with the Royal Family.

Jerry Hall: Which Royal Family?

Tommy Flanagan: Uh.. the one on TV. Yeah. Yeah, I'm a producer, you know. Big-time tele.. movie producer. Yeah, that's the ticket! So, what do you do?

Jerry Hall: Oh, I do some modeling, I wrote a book, and I'm into rock and roll.

Tommy Flanagan: Oh, yeah? I wrote a book about rock and roll. Yeah, it was about the guy who invented rock and roll. Yeah, that's it! In fact, it was.. it was an autobiography! Yeah!

Jerry Hall: [ not buying it ] You invented rock and roll?

Tommy Flanagan: Mmm hmm. Swing, too. Yeah, I played with all the big bands -Elvis Presley, Benny Goodman, Buddy Holly, The Who....

Jerry Hall: And I suppose you played with The Stones, too, huh?

Tommy Flanagan: Well, now you're being silly! I never played with them.

Jerry Hall: I didn't think so.

Tommy Flanagan: No. I managed them! Yeah.. I did. In fact, I wrote all their songs, too. You remember "Satisfaction"? I wrote it!

Jerry Hall: You did not write "Satisfaction".

Tommy Flanagan: Well.. not all of it. Actually.. uh.. Mick Jagger wrote it. Yeah, that's it! But it was originally called, uh.. "I Can't Get No.. uh.. Service in This Place".. and I changed it!

Jerry Hall: You know Mick Jagger?

Tommy Flanagan: Yeah. We were in Vietnam together. In fact, I saved his life.

Jerry Hall: He was never in 'Nam.

Tommy Flanagan: That's how I saved his life - I talked him out of going!

Jerry Hall: Come on! you never met Mick Jagger!

Tommy Flanagan: Oh, yeah? How do you know?

Jerry Hall: Because I'm his wife.

Tommy Flanagan: Oh. [ looks at her hand ] Yeah, well, where's your wedding band?

Jerry Hall: We're not exactly married.

Tommy Flanagan: Ah-ha! I knew you were lying!

Jerry Hall: Well, I am his girlfriend. [ looks to her side ] In fact, here he is now!

Mick Jagger: Hi, darling! I'm sorry I'm a little late. I was.. locked in the studio.

Jerry Hall: Never mind, let's just get going.. [ gets up ]

Tommy Flanagan: [ faking ] Hey, Mick, how you doing! It's me, Tommy! Remember?

Mick Jagger: Who's this guy?

Jerry Hall: Some guy named "Tommy", who thinks he knows you.

Mick Jagger: [ thinking ] Oh, yeah.. I know him!

Tommy Flanagan: [ surprised ] You do?

Jerry Hall: [ also surprised ] Really?

Mick Jagger: Yeah. You remember last weekend when I didn't come home? Uh.. I.. I was.. I was with Tommy. That's right! We were.. we were.. uh.. [ Tommy pantomimes fishing ] ..fishing together! That's the ticket! Right, Tommy?

Tommy Flanagan: [ on the spot ] Yeah, Mick, that's the ticket! You and me, fishing! Yeah! You bet!

Mick Jagger: We caught one this big! [ holds his arms out a couple of feet, while Tommy holds his out twice as much ]

Jerry Hall: [ not interested, wanting to go ] Come on.. [ pulls Mick out of the bar ]

Tommy Flanagan: See? I told you I knew him.

Mick Jagger: [ whispering to Tommy as he passes ] Thanks, buddy, I owe you for this one. [ faces the camera before he exits ] "Live, from New York, it's Saturday Night!