Sunday, August 30, 2020

Songs and Sounds of Summer

Slept longer than I planned this morning. Had a quick cereal and blueberries breakfast while listening to the original cast of Bye Bye Birdie. In this spoof of suburban teen life and culture, songwriter Albert Peterson (Dick Van Dyke) and his girlfriend Rosie Alverez (Chita Rivera) come up with the idea of writing the song "One Last Kiss" for teen idol Conrad Birdie (Dick Gautier), who was just drafted into the Army, to sing on The Ed Sullivan Show. A teen girl chosen randomly from his fan club will be selected to give him that final kiss.

The lucky girl is Kim MacAfee (Susan Watson), who is absolutely thrilled. Her parents and boyfriend Hugo (Michael J. Pollard) are not. Her father Harry (Paul Lynde) loudly protests, until he learns it'll be on television. Albert's clingy mother Mae (Kay Medford) wants her son to continue to be her meal ticket and shoves a tap dancer at him, prompting jealous Rosie to sabotage the show.

Granted, there's a lot of songs here I love, including the hit "Put On a Happy Face," Rosie and Kim's "What Did I Ever See In Him," "A Lot of Livin' to Do" for Conrad and the suburban kids after they've gone out for a night on the town, and the sweet "One Boy" for the girls and Rosie as they discuss their feelings for their men. The problem is, teens may still shriek over their favorite idols and parents may not understand why, but other details have dated rather badly. There's a song revolving around The Ed Sullivan Show, once a staple of family viewing that most families probably don't remember existed nowadays, and Rose's attempt to make Albert do something he doesn't want to do comes off as shallow instead of well-meaning.

This apparently is still a favorite of high schools and colleges to this day...but send the kids online or show them episodes of the real Ed Sullivan to help them understand what a lot of the fuss is about.

Had just enough time to sneak in a little bit of writing before work. Gene's delighted to introduce the six Legendary Princesses, together for the first time in decades. Malade's happy he did her work for her - now she can take them out in one blow, especially since its getting close to midnight...

Rushed off to work less than fifteen minutes after I got off the computer. Work was off-and-on busy all day, surprising considering the gorgeous weather. We're getting pretty close to the beginning of the month; some folks may have already gotten their money. I was tired and flustered and not really up to dealing with some of the more difficult customers. Couldn't have been happier when it slowed down enough by 5:30 for me to dash off without a relief.

It was the perfect day for dinner at Sonic. Evidently, a lot of other people thought so, too. A couple and a large family were already sitting down by the time I arrived. The mother in the family complained gently but firmly that the teens working the kitchen got their orders wrong, even as I gave them mine. They'd fixed the mix-up by the time my chicken sandwich, tater tots, and cherry limeade arrived. Actually, they made a mistake with my order, too. I asked for a cherry limeade slush, not an ordinary cherry limeade. No big deal. It's all liquid.

Took the long way home down Nicholson Road. The weather was too nice not to! It was sunny and breezy, with a deep blue sky, fat fleecy clouds, and no humidity. Not surprisingly, Nicholson Road was just as busy with people going out to order dinner or for Sunday drives. I dodged cars all the way down to Atlantic and Newton Avenue in Oaklyn.

I was so tired, I changed, had peanut butter-no bake cookies for dessert, and settled for listening to my Bold Venture album for an hour. This Humphrey Bogart-Lauren Bacall radio show is one of several Bogart-related old time radio albums that came with the original collection from my late stepmother Kaye. Bogart is Slate Shannon, who owns a Cuban hotel and a boat named Bold Venture. Bacall is Sailor, his equally tough sweetheart. Their adventures range from treasure hunting to dealing with smugglers to battling pirates.

The first story, "The Star of Sheba," has Slate and Sailor delivering jewels that may have lead to the death of a friend of his. "The Blue Moon" involves smuggling intrigue. Both have a lot in common with To Have and Have Not (Bogart-Bacall, he runs a boat, tropical locale with colorful cast), and to a lesser degree, Casablanca (he owns a place where shady types congregate). Evidently, this syndicated show survived better than I Love a Mystery, with 57 out of 78 shows existing. Look them up if you love Bogart, Bacall, or tropical-flavored intrigue.

Finished the night poking around online. Watched the second half of the Flyers-Islanders game after tonight's Match Game premiere on YouTube. Darn it, despite putting up a good stand in the last few minutes, the Flyers lost, 3-2. They'd better get their rears in gear if they want to stay in the playoffs!

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