March 21, 2009

Jr. and His Soulettes

I couldn't resist, and I bought the CD reissue.

You should, too. It's terrific.

Do I like it as much as I did when I first heard it in a teensy Tokyo record store named after a Snakefinger song?

I think so!

March 17, 2009

Erin Go Brah

For many years before I was mrsguy I lived in the same building as an Irish bar.

I loved it three hundred and sixty four days a year. But on St. Patrick's Day I always tried to sleep over at someone else's house so that I'd miss the mayhem.

Tonight I missed another kind of revelry, the St. Patrick's Day celebration with the ukulele band at the Hawaiian restaurant. 

I dubbed it Erin Go Brah.

Instead I spent the night rehearsing with the ladies of Three Letters.

They *also* make me very happy.

Lucky one.


March 14, 2009


Advertising icon + Japan + baseball = happiness

Jubilant Japanese baseball fans throw a statue of Colonel Sanders into the river in Osaka to celebrate a big win.

Many pennant-less years follow.

A Japanese television show tries to find the statue and remove the curse.

The statue is found serendipitously this week. Minus a few body parts and glasses.

The glasses are replaced.

Maybe it's time to bring my Colonel Sanders bank out of retirement. And to dig up the infamous Colonel Sanders tape. I don't recall exactly what was on it (him swearing while filming a commercial?). I only remember that the flipside was a pirated live recording of late-period Elvis unable to keep it together without laughing in the middle of a song.

To the garage!

March 12, 2009

Waikiki Chickadee

Today I puddled up at my desk, because my ipod served up "Waikiki Chickadee".

It reminded me that on our anniversary mrguy serenaded me on ukulele with that very song. He had never done such a thing, and it was so very sweetly sung.

The desk moistening incident this morning was the second time this week that I was moved to tears by music, the first being when the ukulele band rehearsed Danny Boy for St. Patrick's Day. Normally this song does not move me, but I'd never paid attention to the lyrics before, either. They're devastating. I had to run to the bathroom for some tissue, while Auntie explained the waterworks.

I had shared with her that my pop loved this song. He asked for it to be played at his funeral, and when the church would not oblige, we decided to put on a funeral ourselves where Danny Boy could be played in his honor.

I think he would have liked the uke band version on Monday night.

March 8, 2009

Japanese Tobacco Singers

Today mrguy bought me a present: my second Japanese LP whose cover features a smoking man.

Here's the first:

And in a nostalgic tip of the hat to the Fairness Doctrine, another lp from my collection:

The new record is very fabulous. Draw yourself an aural picture of mournful crooning with strings, cornet and clarinet that is almost eastern European, then take a left turn with Raymond Scott-style Bugs Bunny Ali Baba percussion. Add random arpeggios on clavioline, and stir well.

When this record was being produced, smoking in Japan was 6 years away from its peak. In 1966, 83% of Japanese men smoked.

I think my chances of increasing the Japanese Tobacco Singers collection are pretty good.

March 1, 2009


'Tis the season.

The fruit trees will start to bloom soon, and it's now or never in pest preventionville. My modest goal is to enjoy more of our fruit than the apple worms do this year.

To this end, I'm trying Tanglefoot.

It's a goopy layer of green-friendly sludge that you smammy onto the trunks of fruit-bearing trees. It prevents bugs from crawling up them and doing their bug business. What kind of bug business, you ask? Aphid farming. Egg laying. Stuff that people who own fruit trees don't like.

It's war. But a gentle war, because mrguy doesn't believe in pesticides.

So out I went yesterday in the drizzle. Here's the result:

After I admired my work, I remembered that this was basically the same procedure they used in the beautiful garden we visited in Japan. The gardeners wrapped some of the pine trees in straw matting in the fall, which they'll remove and burn in the spring. And Bob's your uncle.

At harvest I will report back. In the meantime, I'm hoping that there will be some visible progress in the form of bug bodies ensnared as if in a Hieronymus Bosch painting.

Is it too much to ask? 

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