30 March 2010

The What Not Meme - Queen's Meme #31

Another Tuesday rolls around and Queen Mimi of Bloggingham has signed a decree bidding her subjects to meme or else the dungeon awaits.  Stop by the site for your marching orders and to join in on the fun. 

Sometimes silly.  Sometimes serious.  Always fun!  Step out of the box.  Be creative.  Use your imagination.
No one's answers are quite like you

The What Not Meme

People are always giving advice on what NOT to do in this situation and that situation. I’ve had it with the know-it-alls this week. I’m switching it up.  It’s your turn to be the expert. Answer what NOT to do in the following situations.  It’s your spin on potential societal blunders (and a few quirky scenarios you might find yourself in). You didn't think I'd leave my quirk home now did ya?

Have at it

Have at it.
What NOT To Do when you’re…..

1. On a first date - Order spaghetti.  Slurping is for after you have the engagement ring.
2. Intoxicated - Say,  "I Do" anywhere for anything.
3. In the shower - Step on the soap while warbling at the top of your lungs.  This can lead to a screech of echoing proportions.
4. At your ex’s wedding - Step up to the mike and sing, "Friends In Low Places" ... all of Friends in Low Places.
5. In jail - Beat on your chest and sing out like Tarzan.
6. being stalked - Act interested in any way, shape or form. 
7. Stuck to an igloo - Light the after sex cigarette
8. In sewing class - Create a four ply creation when two of the ply are what you are already wearing.
9. Asleep in a helium balloon - See #7
10. At a birthday party for twins - Ask which one is the birthday boy/girl?
11. On a nude beach - Wolf Whistle
12. At the opera - Ask if it is Karaoke Night
13. You’re falling in love - Automatically assume it is mutual.  They don't owe you anything for loving them.
14. Low on gasoline in a bad part of town - Pull up to a crowd and ask, "Where do you people buy gas?"
15. Having a baby - Oh do anything you want.  You have a cast iron excuse.  Make the most of it!!!!
16. On fire - See #7
17. Lost at the mall - Shop with a credit card to fill the time until someone finds you.
18. At a single’s dance - Do a strip tease
19. Riding a bike on the Jersey Turnpike - You're dead.  You can't do anything wrong. 
20. Driving your significant other's car - Let your new significant other drive.
21. Being robbed at gunpoint - Say, "Prove that isn't chocolate."
22. Kissing - Blow you bubblegum
23. Paying the hotel cashier - Ask if they take playing cards and will the Jack be enough?
24. Buying lingerie - Try it on and then step up to counter as ask if it is see through
24. Commenting on a blog -  Say anything.  The writer will be so grateful to see a comment, they won't care.
25. In Queen Mimi's dungeon -  Mess with Johnny Depp.  He belongs to the Queen, Oh and see #7

29 March 2010

Join The Circus

One of the best evenings I ever spent at the theater was the night we attended Barnum starring Jim Dale and Glenn Close as Phineas Taylor and Charity Barnum. Unfortunately You Tube doesn't have Ms. Close singing "One Brick At A Time" or her half of "The Colors of My Life", but here is Jim Dale singing The Museum Song complete with a slide show of all the very rapidly mentioned objects placed on view before you confronted the EGRESS.

I was reminded of the above because of a news blurb that this was the 200th anniversary of the birth of P. T. Barnum. In a year that featured the births of Chopin and Barnum, you have to start wondering what was in the water in 1809. 

There has been talk of bringing the musical Barnum back to Broadway in revival.  Early gossip was with Hugh Jackman.  Now the rumor mill has Neil Patrick Harris.  It's not as if those two weren't busy enough.  When do they get time to breath.  Either one or a complete unknown would be welcome it is such a fun show and would be totally appropriate in this bicentennial year.  The audience does get involved from the performers outside the theater to the ones in the aisles as the show progresses until to hear the final speech that returns you to reality as you kiss all the circus flimflam foolery goodbye to the word "Pity" and exit after all the curtain calls to one last joyful circus song wearing confetti on your clothes while wishing there was still time and talent for you to Join The Circus.

Word of warning.  If a ringmaster outside invites you up on a stage to say the names of the ancient goddesses OWAH and TAGU while stamping your foot and uttering the name of the holy ground SIAM, you will be teased unmercifully ....

And if you have never seen it, this production from 2008 in Florida will give you a small taste:

28 March 2010

Let Me Be Your Rider Now

This week's Take This Tune is the delightfully double entendre verses of "Red Staggerwing".  Confession time. I love songs filled with double meanings and sly innuendos simply because I love word play.   Let's face it, even Shakespeare dabbled in hints of goings on.  It doesn't matter if it is Bewitched Bothered and Bewildered with the original lyrics rather than the cleaned up variety or this weeks' decidedly R rated song courtesy of Mark Knopfler and Emmylou Harris.  What can I say except:

Red Staggerwing immediately reminded me of the ex-husband who played guitar and built model airplanes from scratch (no kits).  So I bought him a 12 string and then I designed a plane for him to build.  It was called "The Peregrin" named after the fastest of the hunting birds.  It was bright red and it's wings tapered back similar to a jet aircraft, so our "taperwing" was a scarlet woman from the get to.   It was simply the fastest control line stunt plane ever flown.  Unfortunately, it's design was not meant to do acrobatic stunts at those speeds and it eventually developed stress cracks where the wings joined the body and could no longer fly.  But it was beautiful.  Like the marriage it had it's moments as when he would play Steamroller Blues (another somewhat raunchy song).     When it was bad .... it cracked under stress.

So down below are all the fast and beautiful things that fly, roar, and sing as metaphors for when it's good it's very, very good.

If i was staggerwing plane
A staggerwing painted red
I'd fly over to your house, baby
Buzz you in your bed

If I was a taperwing
A taperwing painted blue
I'd be barrell-rolling over you

If i was a Maserati
A red 300s
I'd ride around to your house, baby
Give you a driving test

If i was a mustang racer
White with a stripe of blue]
You could ride me,baby
Whenever you wanted to

If i was a fender guitar
A fender painted red
You could play me, darlin'
Until your fingers bled

If i was one of them gibsons
Like a '58 or '9
You could plug me in
And play me anytime

If i was a motorcycle
A vincent red rapide
I'd ride around to your house, baby
Get you up to speed

If i was short track racer
I'd be an indian
You could ride me around
And ride me round again

You're gonna need a rider anyhow
Let me be your rider now

Now go have fun.

26 March 2010

Five On Friday

This great new meme was invented by Travis of Trav's Thoughts.  It gives you a chance to pick and theme  or just favorite songs and then design a juke box around it to share with others.  Check his site for instructions and join in the fun. 

This week I'm highlighting the originals.  For its time, the mid-1950s, the lyrical phrase "You got to roll with me, Henry" was considered risqué just as the very label "rock and roll" was understood to have a sexual connotation. The line comes from an Etta James record originally called "Roll With Me Henry" and later renamed "The Wallflower." Already a smash hit on the Billboard Rhythm and Blues chart, it went on to become a pop hit in the spring of 1955, but not for Etta James. Re-recorded with "toned-down" lyrics by the white pop singer Georgia Gibbs, "Dance With Me Henry (Wallflower)" entered the pop charts on March 26, 1955, setting off a dubious trend known as "whitewashing."  On the juke box this week, the black originals of songs later covered by white singers.

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

The Covers

Shake, Rattle & Roll - Bill Haley & The Comets

That's Alright Mama - Elvis Presley

Dance With Me Henry - Georgia Gibbs

Ain't That A Shame - Pat Boone

Long Tall Sally - Gene Vincent

25 March 2010

Fred Was A Fine Fellow

This is the bicentennial year for Frederich Chopin.  The Wikipedia linked here is one of the most extensive I've seen in their pages and I recommend that you take the time to read it.  He was only 39 when he passed away from either tuberculosis or cystic fibrosis.  As a virtuoso pianist and composer in the romantic period of music, he left behind so much beauty that he remains alive in the hearts of millions.  For those who love the majesty of the piano, his compositions are pure gold as they are demanding pieces that force the player to deal with light and darkness of expression and all the magnificent shades in between.

This is Chopin's Fantasie Impromptu in C Sharp Minor, Op. 66 played by Valentina Igoshina which as with many Chopin works became a popular song. In this case: I'm Always Chasing Rainbows here sung by Judy Garland

Above you have Chopin's Polonaise Op. 53 "Heroic" played by Horowitz which became Till The End of Time sung here by Perry Como

24 March 2010

You Helped

Ever since the earthquake in Haiti, I have had two logos on these pages.  Off to the right a direct link to contribute to a Shelter Box to house up to 10 people for at least six months and down at the bottom for a link to the Fish Camp and Colorado Bob who started this particular group effort.  Here is a nice story about the effect the generosity of others is having:  Ben Spurway in Haiti

Thus far through links here and on the Fish Camp site, generous people have bought 98 Shelter Boxes. That put 980 people in desperate need under shelter. In addition to Haiti, Shelter Box continues to service all emergencies world wide that deprive people of the basic necessities of life. The need always continues and the buttons will stay should you wish to donate again.

Here are the contents of every Shelter Box

At the heart of every ShelterBox is a ten-person tent. It is custom made for ShelterBox by Vango, one of the world’s leading tent manufacturers, and is designed to withstand extreme temperatures, high winds and heavy rainfall. Internally, each tent has privacy partitions that allow recipients to divide the space as they see fit.

A smile
Every box contains a children’s pack containing drawing books, crayons and pens. For children who have lost most, if not all,their possessions, these small gifts are treasured.

Warmth and protection
In addition to the tent, the boxes contain a range of other survival equipment including thermal blankets and insulated ground sheets, essential in areas where temperatures plummet at nightfall. Where malaria is prevalent mosquito nets are supplied, as well a life saving means of water purification. Water supplies often become contaminated after a major disaster, as infrastructure and sanitation systems are destroyed, this presents a secondary but no less dangerous threat to survivors than the initial disaster itself.

Self sufficiency
A basic tool kit containing a hammer, axe, saw, trenching shovel, hoe head, pliers and wire cutters can be found in every box. These items enable people to improve their immediate environment, by chopping firewood or digging a latrine, for example. Then, when it is possible, to start repairing or rebuilding the home they were forced to leave.

Fit for purpose
Every item is durable, practical and brand new. The box itself is lightweight and waterproof and has been used for a variety of purposes in the past - from water and food storage containers to a cot for a newly born baby.

A heart to the home
A key piece in every box is either a wood burning or multi-fuel stove - that can burn anything from diesel to old paint. This provides the heart of the new home where water is boiled, food is cooked and families congregate. In addition, there are pans, utensils, bowls, mugs and water storage containers.

Passover Recipes

Passover in 2010 will start on Tuesday, the 30th of March and will continue for 7 days until Monday, the 5th of April.  Note that in the Jewish calander, a holiday begins on the sunset of the previous day, so observing Jews will celebrate the begining of Passover  at sunset on Monday, the 29th of March.  Somewhere in those seven days, it's time for a great story, good music, tears and laughter over the human condition, and lots and lots of food and wine.

If you are not fortunate enough to be invited to a friend's Seder, you might want to seek out some of the dinners open to the public.  You can check with your nearest Synagogue for places, time and cost.  Barring that you might just want to get into the spirit of the Spring holidays with a few traditional Seder recipes for a springtime dinner.  Just for the sake of the story of the deliverance from Egypt, do buy a Haggadah, easily available at a Synagogue or from Amazon.


•5 fuji apples, skin removed
•1 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
•5 tablepoons sugar (honey may be used instead)
•1 cup red wine
•2 teaspoons cinnamon


1. In a food processor, chop apples.
2. Put chopped apples in a large bowl.
3. Add the chopped nuts, sugar, wine and cinnamon.

Matzo Ball Soup



•1 whole chicken
•3 carrots
•3 zucchini
•3 celery sticks
•3 small onions
•2 small parsnips
•salt and pepper to taste
•chicken soup powder to taste

•MATZO BALLS (You can purchase easy to make packages as well)

•4 eggs, separated
•4 Tbsp. water
•4 Tbsp. oil
•1/2 teaspoon salt
•1/4 teaspoon pepper
•1 cup matzoh meal


1. Place chicken in a large soup pot.
2. Cover with water. Boil for 20-30 minutes.
3. Scrape and discard any froth.
4. Add vegetables and spices.
5. Bring to a boil.
6. Lower heat and simmer for 1 1/2 - 2 hours.
7. When cool, strain soup and add back cut-up vegetables.


1. Beat egg whites in a large bowl until stiff peaks form.
2. In a separate bowl, beat together the egg yolks and water with a fork.
3. In another bowl, mix the matzah meal with the spices.
4. Alternate gently folding egg yolk mixture and matzoh meal mixture into egg whites to form a light, firm dough.
5. Cover and chill for 1/2 hour.
6. Boil a pot of water. Add a bit of chicken soup mix.
7. Wet hands and form balls from the dough that are about the size of a walnut. Drop balls into boiling soup.
8. Cover the pot tightly and simmer on low for 1/2 hour. Don't uncover the pot while cooking as this can cause the balls to fall.
9. Matzah balls can be stored for two days in their cooking liquid in a covered container in refrigerator.
10. Reheat gently in their cooking liquid. Then strain and serve balls in hot soup.

Sweet Brisket

Cook Time: 4 hours, 00 minute


•1 7-8 pound brisket, washed and drained
•1/2 cup oil
•1/2 cup Coca-Cola
•1/2 cup dry red wine
•1/2 cup honey
•6-8 Tbsp. ketchup
•2 onions
•1 tsp. paprika


1. Place brisket in a roasting pan. Chop all seasonings in food processor and pour over brisket. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator overnight.
2. Preheat oven to 325° Fahrenheit (165° Celsius).
3. Bake at 325° Fahrenheit (165° Celsius) for approximately 4 hours, or until a digital instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of the brisket reads 190° for well done.
4. When cool, thinly slice the brisket against the grain. It is very important to slice the brisket correctly. If the meat is not sliced against the grain, it will be tough.

Tip: It is best to prepare the brisket a day before it is served as the taste is enhanced after it sits in the fridge.

Roasted Asparagus

•2 pounds fresh asparagus

•olive oil
•kosher salt


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Wash and trim the ends off the asparagus spears.
3. Lay the asparagus spears on baking sheet. Sprinkle olive oil and kosher salt over the asparagus.
4. Roast for 15 minutes. Asparagus is ready when it is a nice bright green color and tender.

TIPS:  Be careful not to overcook the asparagus.

23 March 2010

Hershey's Better Basket Blog Hop

Mary at Work of the Poet tagged me with the Hersheys Better Basket Blog Hop.  Thank you Mary

* Copy and paste these rules to your blog post.

* Create a blog post giving a virtual Easter Basket to another blogger – you can give as many Virtual Baskets as you want.

* Link back to person who gave you an Easter Basket.

* Let each person you are giving a Virtual Easter Basket know you have given them a Basket.

* Leave your link at BetterBasket.info/BlogHop comment section. You can also find the official rules of this Better Basket Blog Hop, and more information about Better Basket with Hershey’s there.

* Hershey’s is donating $10 per each blog participating to the Better Basket Blog Hop to Children’s Miracle Network (up to total of $5,000 by blog posts written by April 4th, 2010).

* Please note that only one blog post by each blog URL will count towards the donation.
I am tagging the following:

Linda at Are We There Yet

Shelly at This Eclectic Life

This is a good time for me to be tagged with this one since my son is on a work trip to Hershey, PA and a box just arrived with bags and bags of temptation including a bag that looks like this:

These are an unbelievable candy and if you are  on a diet I would recommend having a friend lock them in a combination safe and doling them out to you.  They are incredibly delicious and Hershey should be doing good deeds to atone for leading us into temptation.

22 March 2010

The Queen's Meme #30 - The Face Twit Meme - Tweet This

Each week, Queen Mimi Pencil Skirt of Castle Bloggingham commissions her loyal subjects to participate by royal decree.  Welcome to the Queen's Tuesday Meme #30

Sometimes silly.  Sometimes serious.  Always fun!  Step out of the box.  Be creative.  Use your imagination.
No one's answers are quite like yours.

The Facebook Meme (aka The FaceTwit Meme)
It's a little longer than usual but I just couldn't stop in 140 words or less. Sorry.

1. Facebook has now surpassed Google in number of users and traffic.  How much time do you spend on Facebook? If not FB, do you use Twitter?

I check into Facebook twice a day to check for mail or comments and to see if anyone has done anything worth acknowledgement of the wonder of it all and too play a game of Farkle.  Yes I use Twitter but again lightly unless the political blood is flowing in the streets.
2. What is Farmville? I do not understand why people are asking me for margarine.  It's a game that people seem to love.  Since they can't amass acres of land, amber fields of grain and a cow or duck to duck, they play Farmville.  I don't play so you will have to get details on the addiction elswhere.

3. Do you war in the Mafia Wars? I do not understand why people are asking me for cows.  Another interactive game whose purpose seems to be to slaughter your nearest and dearest for fun and profit.  Again you must risk your own hide to get insider deatils.
4. What is Cafe World? I do not understand why people are asking me for bullets!  They need the bullets to mow down the cows that supply steak for the cafe.
5. Are you being bombarded with these "See Who Has Been Looking At your Profile - See Who Your Peeps Are?" application request lately? Not since I shot the last person that asked after someone was crazy enough to give me bullets.

I don't understand why people are asking me for my photograph and that of my dogs.  Because you are beautiful and Homer will gossip.

6. Which FB or Twitter applications, tags or gifts irritate you the most and why?  They don't irritate me.  My delete key works really really well and my fingers need the exercise .... take that AP!!!

7. Every morning I am faced with the question at the top of my Facebook profile page, "What's On Your Mind?" Now Mr. Online Mailman wants to know the same thing. Does the whole world need to know what I'm thinking at every moment? I can't write that in a public place ya know. But if you had to answer that question honestly at 9:00 am each morning, what would you say?

I've been up for five hours.  Don't mess with me. 
8. Do you know how you became friends and followers with everyone in your list on Facebook and Twitter?
Actually I deleted everyone that I didn't know from elsewhere.  If Prince Charming was in there somewhere, I'm really really sorry.
9. Have you ever been deceived online by someone you thought was someone else? How did you know?  No.  They got deleted before the relationship got that far.

10. Do you enjoy chatting via Yahoo Messenger or AOL the old-fashioned way? If so, who do you chat with most online?  I don't chat in either Yahoo or AOL.  I will reply on Facebook or Twitter to messages.

11. Have you ever been contacted on Facebook or via email under false pretenses, for dubious purposes, or by meddling nosy people in general?  I've had to block people on Twitter who "followed" me and from their page seem to be mistaking me of a male "Jamie".  Twitter usually deletes them before I get to that stage.

12. Think about it. We are all flitting around making bird noises on the internet. What would the PETA people say?! Can you think of a more suitable animal mascot for Twitter? What kind of sound would we make?  Judging by some of political types, I think Homer should teach a hound to bay which would be appropriate for people doing the hounding.
13. What kind of new cool innovative application would you like to see on Facebook or Twitter? What would you call it?  The "Go Away" button that you could press and watch fireworks go off as their message exploded before your eyes.  It would then send them a message stating, "We wish to advise you that you have been declared dead one more time."

14. Have you ever had to block someone from Facebook or Twitter?  See 12
15. Do you allow your real life friends to communicate with you there or do you prefer to be incognito to the universe at large?  I'm pretty open about who and where I am, but then I have very nice friends.
16. Do you belong to any CAUSES on Facebook or Twitter? If so, what makes you passionate about them and why did you join?  Why Peace Globes my queen and of course I'm passionate about them.
17. Do you know what a Twibe is?  See 16.  I belong to the Peace Twibe

18. Have you ever rage twitted? Tell me!  Some right wing wacko tweeted "Jesus Wept" about the downfall of America in the face of the Healthcare legislation passing yesterday.  I immediately Tweeted, "Right after he fed thousands and healed the sick".  Then there was the "Boehner is such a rude, orange clown" remark.  I had a good time yesterday.
19. I find that more and more people are reading my blogs on Facebook and commenting there. Do you share your blog posts on Facebook? Do you find that it helps or hinders your blog traffic?  I share my blog on Facebook and yes it is diminishing traffic. 
20. Wanna be my friend on FB? I have nearly 800 now. At least I'd recognize you!  I'm already your friend.  Do you ever visit me?

Don't you be foolin' me now. There's always the dreaded dungeon.
I wonder if there's an app for that. Hmmmm......

Now how are you going to make this fit a blog post about Elvis?

21 March 2010

Take This Tune - Black Velvet

This week's Take This Tune is Alannah Myles' tribute to Elvis Presley, "Black Velvet".

Last year I told you of my one and only encounter with Elvis in "A Chinchilla Named Elvis".  How I became an undying fan and the long term effect on my life happened as follows.

It was the summer of 1957. Loving You was going to be shown in a midnight premiere at the Warners Theater.  I had seen "Love Me or Leave Me" the previous year while living with an aunt, but this was summer with Mama and she hadn't yet been introduced to my addiction.  Mama was a waitress at a high end steak house named Dee's in Fresno, and would barely be dragging home in time to take me, but I'm begging anyway. To top it off she is working all week in mesh hose, high heels and a western saloon girl's outfit for some Pioneer festival the county was celebrating. Get the picture: Sore Feet, Long hours, begging 13 year old, movie starring a man she has never seen or heard. The no was adamant, but while ironing she did become the one and only person I ever heard say, "What's an Elvis Presley?"  I put a fan magazine with full page picture in front of her which got the response, "At least you have good taste".

Come the night of the premiere and hope is fading fast.  Mama gets home and takes off the three inch heels.  She pulls off the mesh hose that have actually cut into her feet.  She looks at me and her watch, slips on her regular waitress oxfords and says, "Let's go".  Fresno was a sleepy town for a premier and the theater is almost empty except for the policemen at each exit just in case the non existant hordes of teenage girls start riotous screaming.

The first song in the movie that Elvis sings is "Got A Lot Of Living To Do".  Towards the end, the camera goes into full closeup on that face as it swung around and those blue eyes now several feet tall were blazing on the screen.  I don't think I even realized that I was flying up out of the seat, until I felt my mother's hand on my wrist as she said, "Honey, they like it better if you resist just a little."  At which point sanity trumped hormones and I went thud back into the seat and started laughing.  Suffice to say that I never got even close to a scream over any idol ever again.  The long term side effect is that the men in my life must possess a strong ego as intensity has been known to produce laughter at inopportune moments.  "No dear, I'm laughing at me not you."

Not a huge movie screen, but you shouldn't have any trouble seeing when the above happened.

20 March 2010

Road To Mandalay

I happened to be running around the net today researching various things and stumbled across a singer from early in the last century that I had never heard before. Since one of his recordings is one of my favorite Rudyard Kipling poems set to music, I decided to share a truly great baritone voice.

Peter Dawson From Wikipedia

Peter Dawson (31 January 1882 - 27 September 1961) was an Australian bass-baritone. He gained worldwide renown through his song recitals and the many best-selling recordings which he made of operatic arias, oratorio solos and rousing ballads during a career spanning almost 60 years.

Although Dawson's repertoire embraced a great deal of now dated popular songs and light music, he possessed a remarkably fluent and technically adroit vocal technique which enabled him to excel in highly demanding classical pieces. His voice combined an attractive dark timbre with an ideal balance of diction and vocal placement. He also possessed a smooth legato, a strong but integrated 'attack' that eschewed intrusive aspirates, and a near-perfect ability to manage running passages and difficult musical ornaments such as roulades.

These skills probably derived from his studies with Sir Charles Santley, a virtuoso English baritone of the Victorian era. If Dawson's interpretations were not profoundly penetrating, they were not shallow either; and in his chosen field of English concert pieces of the vigorous, manly, outdoors kind, he remains unequalled. The tremendously high technical finish of his Handelian singing sets an unmatched standard, too.

In 1984, Dawson was chosen by the Guinness Book of Recorded Sound as one of the top 10 singers on disc of all time, listed alongside such luminaries as Elvis Presley and the great operatic tenor Enrico Caruso.


by Rudyard Kipling

By the old Moulmein Pagoda, lookin' eastward to the sea,
There's a Burma girl a-settin', and I know she thinks o' me;
For the wind is in the palm-trees, and the temple-bells they say:
"Come you back, you British soldier; come you back to Mandalay!"
Come you back to Mandalay,
Where the old Flotilla lay:
Can't you 'ear their paddles chunkin' from Rangoon to Mandalay?
On the road to Mandalay,
Where the flyin'-fishes play,
An' the dawn comes up like thunder outer China 'crost the Bay!

'Er petticoat was yaller an' 'er little cap was green,
An' 'er name was Supi-yaw-lat -- jes' the same as Theebaw's Queen,
An' I seed her first a-smokin' of a whackin' white cheroot,
An' a-wastin' Christian kisses on an 'eathen idol's foot:
Bloomin' idol made o'mud --
Wot they called the Great Gawd Budd --
Plucky lot she cared for idols when I kissed 'er where she stud!
On the road to Mandalay . . .

When the mist was on the rice-fields an' the sun was droppin' slow,
She'd git 'er little banjo an' she'd sing "~Kulla-lo-lo!~"
With 'er arm upon my shoulder an' 'er cheek agin' my cheek
We useter watch the steamers an' the ~hathis~ pilin' teak.
Elephints a-pilin' teak
In the sludgy, squdgy creek,
Where the silence 'ung that 'eavy you was 'arf afraid to speak!
On the road to Mandalay . . .

But that's all shove be'ind me -- long ago an' fur away,
An' there ain't no 'busses runnin' from the Bank to Mandalay;
An' I'm learnin' 'ere in London what the ten-year soldier tells:
"If you've 'eard the East a-callin', you won't never 'eed naught else."
No! you won't 'eed nothin' else
But them spicy garlic smells,
An' the sunshine an' the palm-trees an' the tinkly temple-bells;
On the road to Mandalay . . .

I am sick o' wastin' leather on these gritty pavin'-stones,
An' the blasted Henglish drizzle wakes the fever in my bones;
Tho' I walks with fifty 'ousemaids outer Chelsea to the Strand,
An' they talks a lot o' lovin', but wot do they understand?
Beefy face an' grubby 'and --
Law! wot do they understand?
I've a neater, sweeter maiden in a cleaner, greener land!
On the road to Mandalay . . .

Ship me somewheres east of Suez, where the best is like the worst,
Where there aren't no Ten Commandments an' a man can raise a thirst;
For the temple-bells are callin', an' it's there that I would be --
By the old Moulmein Pagoda, looking lazy at the sea;
On the road to Mandalay,
Where the old Flotilla lay,
With our sick beneath the awnings when we went to Mandalay!
On the road to Mandalay,
Where the flyin'-fishes play,
An' the dawn comes up like thunder outer China 'crost the Bay!

19 March 2010

5 On Friday - Sondheim Tribute

Travis of Trav's Thoughts has created this wonderful meme. Be sure to stop by to connect to all the folks playing and if you have a blog of your own jump in and join us.

March 22 is Stephen Sondheim's 80th birthday. In his honor, all of the 5 for Friday songs are from Sondheim scores.  I've had to use two You Tube clips as the player was a little short on his creations.

First - Could I Leave You - Follies

Second - I Never Do Anything Twice - Seven Percent Solution

Third -  The Ballad of Sweeny Todd - Sweeny Todd The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

Fourth - Hello Little Girl - Into The Woods

Fifth -  Agony - Into The Woods

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

And just like potato chips you can't eat just one or five for that matter, here's some more Sondheim

I'm Still Here - Follies

Broadway Baby - Follies

Ladies Who Lunch - Company

Losing My Mind - Follies

Everybody Ought To Have Maid - A Funny Thing Happened on the Way To the Forum

Westside Story Medley

I could go on and on and on as in the Andrew Lloyd Webber vs. Stephen Sondheim fan brawl, I am definitely playing for team Sondheim.  Still you might like to read an interesting article about Webber's latest musical and sequel to Phantom:  Love Never Dies http://tiny.cc/PMBAZ

18 March 2010

15 March 2010

Queen's Meme #29 - The Bucket List Meme

Welcome to the Queen's Tuesday Meme #29
Sometimes silly.  Sometimes serious.  Always fun!  Step out of the box.  Be creative.  Use your imagination.
No one's answers are quite like yours.

It's not original. It's not my idea. This meme has been around in various forms. Call it whatever you wish. But I thought it would be interesting to make a wish list of things you want to accomplish or do before you ....um....well....die. Cheery, no? Just like the two characters in the 2007 motion picture, The Bucket List, we all have a list in our heads. I'm not sure I've ever actually written mine down. Some I've already crossed off. I think it's time for a fresh new slate of ideas and direction for me. I've been through a lot of change in the last year. And even though the list might change periodically, nevertheless, the task gives me pause.

What AM I doing to push forward those dreams of mine? Maybe it will help if I write them down. And what hinders me from getting them done? That is the bigger question.

The rules: There are none. List as many things as you'd like. Give us your answers in pictures, words or song lyrics. Make it serious or funny. Your choice.

What's on your list?


Once more Queen Mimi doth command and we the loyal subjects of Bloggingham environs obey.  There must be something in the air.  I ask people where they want to spend their last days on earth and she wants to know what we want to do before we get there.  Did someone declare an early Halloween for ghoulish pursuits.

Speaking of things being in the air, when I looked over some of the possibilities they all seem to be connected to getting off the ground.

1.  I want to take a balloon ride during the festival in New Mexico with that traditional champagne breakfast following.

2.  Must do a few rounds on the London Eye

3.  Qantas should take me away to Australia

That's the top three your majesty.  I'm sure more will be revealed at a later time.

14 March 2010

Take This Tune - Where You Gonna Go

This week's Take This Tune is Jimmy Buffet's "Volcano" with its signature line of "Where You Gonna Go When The Volacano Blows?" while naming off all the places he doesn't want to be when the end comes. When a lifelong gypsy tries to consider one FINAL place to stay put, it presents all sorts of difficulties because the "Next" place has always been the best.

Finally came to the conclusion that it had to have water (that piscean thing - can't go anywhere you might actually get dry) ... That narrowed it down to raucous ocean or meandering stream, and since it had to be perfect, which isn't going to happen in anyone's lifetime, I opted for the imaginary but absolutely perfect ....

12 March 2010

5 On Friday - Garth Brooks Sing Along

My blog buddy Travis dreamed up this fun meme.  Just visit Trav's Thoughts for full instructions and play along.

This is a truly simple list ... My favorite Garth Brooks Songs

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

08 March 2010

The Queen's Meme #28 - The Never Should Meme

Welcome to the Queen's Tuesday Meme #28

Sometimes silly. Sometimes serious. Always fun!
Step out of the box. Be creative. Use your imagination.
No one's answers are quite like yours.
The Never Should Meme
Brought to you from the sunny beaches of Somewhere whilst on vacation.

I actually believe that if "shoulds" and "nevers" were banned from the English language we'd all be better off. Who needs to live in absolutes? Should evokes unnecessary and unhealthy guilt.
Never is never enough no matter what you should be doing. Not ever! See? But in this fill-in-the-blank exercise you can be as dogmatic and brutal as you dare.
After today's meme, lose the words.
You should.
Oh, never mind.

Strongly agree about the words as they indicate being "other" directed rather than developing your own ethical code from within, but I will play along just because the Queen has commanded and I should do what the Queen commands (see what I mean about other directed?)  Looked at the sentences and I may have to play it without too many funny statements this time. 

First in the interest of giving people something interesting read, here is a quotation from Robert Heinlein that describes exactly how I feel about "should".

"Do not confuse "duty" with what other people expect of you; they are utterly different. Duty is a debt you owe to yourself to fulfill obligations you have assumed voluntarily. Paying that debt can entail anything from years of patient work to instant willingness to die. Difficult it may be, but the reward is self-respect.

But there is no reward at all for doing what other people expect of you, and to do so is not merely difficult, but impossible. It is easier to deal with a footpad than it is with the leech who wants "just a few minutes of your time, please—this won't take long." Time is your total capital, and the minutes of your life are painfully few. If you allow yourself to fall into the vice of agreeing to such requests, they quickly snowball to the point where these parasites will use up 100 percent of your time—and squawk for more!

So learn to say No—and to be rude about it when necessary. Otherwise you will not have time to carry out your duty, or to do your own work, and certainly no time for love and happiness. The termites will nibble away your life and leave none of it for you.

(This rule does not mean that you must not do a favor for a friend, or even a stranger. But let the choice be yours. Don't do it because it is "expected" of you.)"

— Robert A. Heinlein (Time Enough for Love)

1. If I never see a plaid horse again it will be too soon. Seeing one once was definitely more than enough.

2. Should I meet my Maker tomorrow, I would ask for one more day on earth to spend with a special someone.  Actually I would ask for several more lifetimes.

3. Never in my life have I had such a useless day like I did today.

4. I should always allow more time to read. 
5. I should've never listened to a man while under the influence of attraction.

6. I never sleep in my car but I should always carry a blanket with me just in case.

7. I should spend more money on live theater tickets because it makes me happy. I should spend less money on clothes because it makes me sad.

8.Advice should never be shared with strangers.

9. I should tell ___________that I never really meant to _____________.  I just plain didn't have an answer for this one.  See above reference to inner directed. 

10. Never in a million years would I want you to know where I'm Ticklish

07 March 2010

Six Impossible Things Before Breakfast

This week's Take This Tune is all about dreams of spring and love.  This would have been fine when I planned on pontificating about the childish delight of daydreams, imaginary friends, and the longing for adventure that you can actually carry into adulthood for both fun and profit.  Then I went to see Alice In Wonderland this morning.  Instead you get big kid time, loving the 3D and getting totally lost in the dream while trying desperately to remember all the words to Jaberwocky but only getting as far as the first two verses and loving the words "frumious Bandersnatch".  Try saying that three times without smiling:  "frumious Bandersnatch", "frumious Bandersnatch", "frumious Bandersnatch".

This motion picture is Tim Burton at his best supported by a truly great cast of some of the best actors in the business today both on screen and as voice overs.  What is most amazing is that by giving Alice a back story of someone who believes "six impossible things for breakfaast" and losing the father who taught her than the best people are "bonkers", there is actually a wonderful message about perseverance, imagination, and loving friends even the ones who are "different".   Besides you wouldn't want to miss Johnny Depp doing the Fuderwhacking.

The Mad Hatter, The White Queen, The Queen of Hearts

Townes Van Zandt

Born March 7, 1944, Townes Van Zandt was one of the most prolific songwriters and performers of the last several decades. Often referred to as a "cult" musician he was lauded and respected by some of the greatest artists performing today despite his history of addiction that led to his death. Enjoy the Wiki bio and then visit I Tunes to pick up some wonderful music.

04 March 2010

5 On Friday - Tell Me A Story

This week I wanted to do "story" songs.  One of my favorites is Amanda McBroom's "Crimes of the Heart" above.  It wasn't available on the player, so you get it above from You Tube.  Below are five songs that can play as motion pictures in your mind while listening to them. Do you have any favorite "story" songs?

Sammy Davis, Jr., "Mr. Bojangles"

One of Sammy's biggest hits, Mr. Bojangles is so believable than you feel as if you have actually met the old gentleman in that jail cell and saw him click his heels even as the clock ran down on his life.

Barry Manilow, "Copacabana"

From the first line (Her name was Lola, she was a showgirl") to the end, you get the story of the lives of Lola and her bartender boyfriend Tony who work at the Copacabana nightclub until a rich rival for Lola's affections takes Tony down. Cut to 30 years later, when Lola sits alone  "and drinks herself half-blind" at the Copa.  This one actually did become a made for TV movie.

Jimmy Buffet, "He Went To Paris"

This song is literally the story of a whole life from adventurous youth to old age of a man as told to Buffet by an old friend just sitting in the sun chatting.

Townes Van Zandt, "Pancho and Lefty"

Most people have heard the Willie and Waylon version, but this is the original by Van Zandt. It is the last gasp of the "Old West" from the point of view of the outlaw growing old in some city flop house instead of the wide open range of his youth.

John Prine, "Sam Stone"

One of Brother John Prine's most famous songs about a man coming home from Viet Nam scarred by war.

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones