Friday’s Theme Music

Friday, February 26, 2021, doesn’t look like a happy day. A flat pale gray blanket stretching to every corner covers the sky this morning. Temperature is 42 degrees F, so that’s not bad. Sunrise stole in with little ceremony at 6:51 AM. Sunset is due at 5:57 PM.

The Wayback Machine was fully activated, triggered by a Zoom call. I wasn’t on it, but lurking in the other room. The call was my wife’s dance class. One member said that the people on the call looked like the start of “The Brady Bunch”. Another suggested “Hollywood Squares”. A third mentioned “Laugh-In”.

The “Laugh-In” comment popped “sock it to me” into my head. Remember that phrase? Good possibility that you answered a resounding, “No.” Well, “sock it to me” was a popular humorous catchphrase in the late sixties. Seriously. It was like, “can’t touch this”, “where’s the beef”, and “whassup” in another decade, or “who let the dogs out?” The phrase was everywhere, in every context, and this was pre-net, pre-text, pre-video existence. At least three songs with the phrase climbed out of the Wayback Machine for my mental streaming pleasure. One had to the legs to keep my brain engaged.

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, and get vaccinated. Now, please enjoy Mitch Ryder & The Detroit Wheels with their 1967 hit, “Sock It To Me-Baby”.

Thursday’s Theme Music

Today is Thursday, February 25, 2021. Sunrise was at 6:53 AM and sunset comes at 5:56 PM. Sunset will soon be after 6 PM here in Ashland, 2021, which makes me happy. Of course, we’re barreling toward daylight savings time, that terrific day when we spring ahead one hour, losing one hour of sleep and one hour of late afternoon/evening sun. Yes, eventually, it catches up again, but I’d rather not endure it each year.

I was a child, emerging into my teenage years during the 1960s. That meant that the Beatles were the group I heard most. Beatles, Beach Boys, Rolling Stones…you know the list. The press was always atwitter over what any musical band was doing. That’s what pop culture is all about, innit? Movie stars had been dominating until then but the landscape was shifting.

Anyway, a song by the Beatles, “Hey Jude”, has captured the mental musical stream this morning, beginning to end. It’s one of those things — yeah, an earworm — where I believe that I must share it in order to save myself. Sorry.

This is a repeat. The song was selected as the day’s theme music back in 2016. At that time, I heard it on the store’s PA system. You know, stores like piping music in to create the right environment, set the shopping pace, distract shoppers, etc. On that day, “Hey Jude” was playing as I shopped. Most shoppers encountered were lipping the words or singing it to themselves. Imagination ran with it, creating a Broadway musical where we all come together in the aisles, singing and dancing. It would be an episode of “Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist these days.

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, and get vaccinated. Also, listen to this 1968 song. Cheers

Wednesday’s Theme Music

Hello. Welcome to this edition of Wednesday, brought to you by 2021. “2021. The year that has to get better.” Today is the twenty-fourth of February, meaning that February is fast running out of time. Today’s sunrise came at 6:54 AM in Ashland. We expect sunrise about eleven hours and four minutes later, at 5:55 PM. A sun bomb has gone off but the air is chilly at 40 degrees F. We expect another late charge into the low to mid fifties by late afternoon. The mountains blocks so much sun as it steals over the sky, robbing us of warmth and plunging us into early twilight. Across the valley is the land of sun, where it’s bright all day long, you know?

Rush is the music provider today. “Limelight” from 1981 skipped into the mental music stream as I walked yesterday. Its rhyming lyrics, with their sharp enunciation, are memorable.

Living on a lighted stage
Approaches the unreal
For those who think and feel
In touch with some reality
Beyond the gilded cage

Cast in this unlikely role
Ill-equipped to act
With insufficient tact
One must put up barriers
To keep oneself intact

Living in the limelight
The universal dream
For those who wish to seem
Those who wish to be
Must put aside the alienation
Get on with the fascination
The real relation
The underlying theme

h/t to Metrolyrics.com

And so the song goes, a good walking song, solid beat except where it slows for the solo, but that’s how prog-rock often goes, innit? Stay positive, folks, and test negative. Persevere, carry on, wear a mask, and get vaccinated. If that all fails, have a drink. Think I’ll go get a coffee, black, thank you, and unsweetened, like my soul.

You know?

Tuesday’s Theme Music

Good morning. Today is Tuesday, February 23, 2021. Sunset was at 6:56 AM and sunset will be at 5:53 PM in Ashland. Just a few more minutes less between the two and we reach eleven hours of daylight. Hooty-hoo.

Today finds the sun out in full force, unfettered by clouds, giving us an early temperature of 46 degrees F. We expect to hit the mid-50s. We’re told clouds are regrouping by the coast a few hundred miles away as the clouds flow, and rain is a late day possibility, but I’m living in the present.

Although I push that claim (about living in the present), the music Wayback Machine was busy pulling in tunes from the last century. Lyrics and melody were recalled. But I was then stymied: who is that? What’s the name of the song? Damn, I should know this. Well, thirty minutes later, some memory chipped its way to the surface. Exerted by effort, memory said with the heavy breathing of extended exertion, “I think it’s Bread.”

Bread? Really? Are you sure? A few minutes of net searching confirmed the song is “Mother Freedom” by Bread, 1971, yes, fifty years ago.

Freedom, keep walkin’
Keep on your toes and don’t stop talkin’ ’bout
Freedom, get goin’
Lots to be learned and lots to be known ’bout
People gotta reach ’em
Sit ’em right down and then you gotta teach ’em ’bout
Freedom, gotta win it
Gotta put yourself smack dab in it

h/t to AZLyrics.com

I unnerstand why Bread didn’t immediately pop to mind for this harder pop/rock song. Bread was mostly soft pop, like “Diary”. This song wasn’t a big hit for them.

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, get vaccinated, and keep on rockin’. Cheers

Thursday’s Theme Music

Hello, and welcome to this edition of Thursday. Today’s date is February 18, 2021. The temperature is 39 degrees F under sporadic rain, a vast difference from yesterday’s sunny disposition. The sunrise was at 7:03 AM while sunset is expected at 5:47 PM in Ashland. You know that means we’re moving closer to springing ahead, right?

We’re not enduring those horrible winter storms challenging most of the nation. We stayed too warm due to some weather system off of Oregon’s coast. It doesn’t save anything north of Eugene. Up there, they’ve been battered. Move east, the storm managed to sweep down over the plain states and invade Texas. Those proud Texans are asking for help. Some, like elected officials such as Mayor Tim Boyd of Colorado City, and Senator Ted Cruz, don’t particularly care. They could be wearing Melania’s infamous, “I Don’t Care Do You?” jacket.

Boyd told people without water to “think outside the box to survive” and called people waiting in the cold because they have no power “lazy” – even as authorities were telling people to stay home to avoid icy roads.

“Bottom line quit crying and looking for a handout!!” he said, before finishing off his message in capital letters,”DONT [be] PART OF PROBLEM, BE A PART OF THE SOLUTION!!”‘

That’s leadership. Meanwhile, Ted Cruz, demonstrating his concern, flew to Cancun.

Today’s song choice is “Glory Days”, a 1985 Bruce Springsteen offering. Glory days is an affliction that affect many as they peak at an early age and then continue to tell stories about who they once were, and what they did. I was thinking of it because I wondered if the United States was afflicted by glory days, telling about what we once did as the nation falls apart. Hope you enjoy the music. Remember, stay warm, positive, and safe, and test negative.

Wednesday’s Theme Music

Hello. Today is Wednesday, the forty-second day of 2021, February 17. 2021. Sunrise struck southern Oregon at 7:05 AM. It’s an assertive sun today, shining down on increased quantities of expanding greenery. Sunset will be at 5:46 PM. All that sunshine is exciting the floofs. Two — Youngblood and Black Beauty, aka Papi and Boo — are out there soaking it up. Not Tucker, though. Today is my wife’s exercise morning (M-W-F), and he likes being in on that.

The skunk declared war on something on Monday night. We were collateral damage as the smell spilled up into the entire house. Fortunately, yesterday was sunny and pleasant (the rain they said we’d get never came). We turned off the heater and opened windows. The skunk’s scent cleared. We went out for a drive. When we returned, she’d struck again. So, do-over, and success again. Then, 9 PM, we went grocery shopping for fresh produce. When we returned…guess what? Yep, she’d struck again. Geuss she was bored or something. This time we fired up the air purifier. That worked. Last night remained skunk free.

Today’s song jumped into the mental stream out of 1992. When I woke up and was still in bed, I thought, “I’m so hot.” Then, writing in my head, I noted, “I’m so excited.” About two minutes later, I said to myself, “I’m so hungry,” and hastened to make breakfast. “I’m so ready,” followed a short while later as I made coffee and then headed in to write. That’s when the Wayback Machine activated Nirvana’s song, “Lithium”.

I’m so happy
‘Cause today I found my friends-they’re in my head
I’m so ugly, that’s okay ’cause so are you
Broke our mirrors

h/t to Metrolyrics.com

Yeah, you know how it goes, right? Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, get vaccinated, do a little dance, make a little love, get down tonight. Cheers

Stick To It

Are you familiar with the Gorilla Glue Girl’s hair-mix-up fiasco? Out of a needed product, she made a decision that didn’t work as planned. The mistake earned her time as the web’s focus. Her fortunes spilled over into an SNL skit last Saturday.

I feel for her. Making bad decisions and mistakes is a human trait. The worst I’ve usually done is grabbed the wrong keys or the wrong sunglasses. Although there was one time when I was carrying one thing for the refrigerator and another for the trash and was about to put the one in the other but then caught myself.

I’ve had moments of panic when I thought I did the wrong thing. Once, when I was sixteen, I boarded a Greyhound bus to head south. I’d been up visiting Mom in Pittsburgh, PA. Now I was traveling south to southern West Virginia, where I lived with Dad. I don’t know what the deal is. It was late, like after ten PM. I may have fallen asleep. Next thing that I know, the bus was moving and the driver was talking about stops in Florida.

Florida! Man, I didn’t want to go to Florida. I was going home. But a little later, he announced, like an afterthought, “We’ll be in Charleston, West Virginia, in about three hours.”

Some time was required before my breathing returned to normal and the sweat dried on my body. I did not go to sleep again; I stayed awake, fearful of ending up far away from where I wanted to be.

No, wait; the worst was when I was checking out of an Atlanta hotel. I’d been there for a week on business. Now it was time to roll for the airport. Part of my travel routine is to slip my retired military ID into my shirt pocket for easy access when I’m going through security. I also think it saves time identifying me should the plane ever crash. My photo ID would be right there in my shirt. It’ll work if I still have my shirt on after the accident, if the ID isn’t thrown from the pocket, and if my face isn’t mangled or burned past the point that a photo ID would help.

Anyway, on this day as I headed out of the hotel, I dropped my plastic hotel key card into the box for that purpose and headed for the airport. Then I arrived there and found, oh, shit, you guessed it: I’d dropped off my military ID instead of my card key.

Well, I immediately called the hotel, explained it all, and asked them to overnight it via FedEx on my company’s account, so problem solved.

What about you? Do you have a story to share that shows how you commiserate with G3’s predicament that you’re willing to share?

Sunday’s Theme Music

Good morning. Today is Sunday, Febraruary 14, 2021. Sunrise was at 7:09 AM. Gray paint has been spilled across the sky. Rain pummels our area. It’s 35 degrees F outside. Snow showers are expected, still we’re better off than in many places, where the snow is mounting like debt. Sunrise will be at 5:42 PM.

Today’s music is provided by Curtis Mayfield. “Move On Up” came out in 1971 but didn’t crack the charts in the US. That history surprised me. The song always moved and encouraged me. Seems to be true for others, as Joe Biden uses it, and it’s been employed in movies. I don’t hear it often on the radio, though.

Just move on up
Toward your destination
Though you may find, from time to time, complication

Bite your lip
And take a trip
Though there may be wet road ahead
And you cannot slip
Just move on up
For peace you’ll find
Into the steeple of beautiful people
Where there’s only one kind

So hush now, child
And don’t you cry

Your folks might understand you
By and by
Move on up
And keep on wishin’
Remember your dream is your only scheme
So keep on pushin’

So hush now, child
And don’t you cry

Your folks might understand you
By and by
Move on up
And keep on wishin’
Remember your dream is your only scheme
So keep on pushin’

h/t to Genius.com

A hopeful song is welcomed today, making it my choice for Sunday’s theme music.

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, and get vaccinated. Cheers

Saturday’s Theme Music

Good morning! Today is Saturday, February 13, 2021. Sunrise was at 7:10 AM and sunset in Ashland, Oregon, is expected at 5:41 PM. Outside the windows, sun and rain compete for dominance. Clouds stack up and surround blue sky like disapproving parents. The current temperature is 42 degrees F.

Trump’s second impeachment trial dominates the U.S. headlines (witnesses are going to be called, you know), along with the weather. An enormous winter storm is moving across the nation, chasing the temperatures down the thermometer into that freezing range where few are comfortable. Snow and ice has caused power failures, traffic accidents, and deaths in multiple regions.

The Wayback Machine remains active in my brain. I was stuck with “Give My Regards to Broadway” in my head. It started yesterday afternoon while I was taking a long walk. I really don’t know why. Part of the process I suffered was that I couldn’t remember the name of the square mentioned in the song. I looked it up this morning, confirming that it’s Harold Square. When I sang that last night in search of the truth, it sounded wrong. So did every other name plugged in there.

Joining that song in the night’s middle was a song by the Turtles, “Happy Together” from 1967. I decided it’ll work for today’s theme music. Oddly, I had a cousin who couldn’t get his head around the phrase, “No matter how they tossed the dice, it had to be.” Although he was older by a month, I spent endless hours trying to explain what the phrase meant. Exasperating.

Stay warm, safe, and positive. Test negative. Wear a mask and get vaccinated. Sing along to the bouncy music. Cheers

Friday’s Theme Music

Good morning and welcome to Friday, February 12, 2021. Sunrise was at 7:11 AM and sunset is expected at 5:40 PM here in Ashland in southern Oregon, a few miles north of California. The temperature is a rainy 47 F. That rain makes it feel degrees colder.

I jumped into the Wayback Machine for today’s music, landing back in 1968. The song is “Hush”. Deep Purple covers it for us. Cat activity prompted the song. Papi was batting the blinds. This is his floofmaphore. In this case, he was saying, “It’s six AM, give me some canned cat food!” I was responding, “Hush, I’m trying to sleep.”

Hush stayed in the head as word, expanding into a concept under sleep’s veil until, whoa, pop, Rod Evans and Deep Purple were performing “Hush” in my head. Yes, the cat was fed, by the way. He is a ginger streak of persistence.

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, and get vaccinated. I read that ten percent of the US population has now been populated. President Biden’s administration has acquired more doses and is pushing for us to all be vaccinated within a few months. Alaska leads the nation in vaccines at fifteen plus percent. West Virginia, New Mexico, and Connecticut, all in the twelve percent range, are giving chase. Oregon, where I reside, is in the big ten percent pack. These are all just first shot numbers. All states drop to single digits when the question is asked, how many have had the second shot? Israel leads the world, where 27% have been fully vaccinated.

Here’s the music. Have a better one, yeah?

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