HMS Pinafore X2

I’m in the mood to mostly screw off today, so here’s an old friend, for your (and my) enjoyment.

There’s no deep message intended here, it’s Saturday, and time to wind down from another week. Cause we ain’t gonna fix it before Monday, anyway. So sit back and enjoy some of the first (semi) serious music that I fell in love with as a kid. The old Golden Records survey of music opened a lot of doors for me, and this is one of them.

From the 2005 Proms: HMS Pinafore

Any resemblance to the US Government is (I hope) coincidental,

but I wouldn’t bet much on it.

HMS Pinafore

There’s no deep message intended here, it’s Saturday, and time to wind down from another week. Cause we ain’t gonna fix it before Monday, anyway. So sit back and enjoy some of the first (semi) serious music that I fell in love with as a kid. The old Golden Records survey of music opened a lot of doors for me, and this is one of them.

From the 2005 Proms: HMS Pinafore

Any resemblance to the US Government is (I hope) coincidental,

but I wouldn’t bet much on it.

Guilty Pleasures

Well, folks, it’s Saturday, I’m kind of lazy, and I’ve heard a rumor that Jess is indulging her girly side, and has gone shopping. This is also the 1201st post on Nebraska Energy Observer. I have no idea if that’s any sort of a milestone or not but, that’s what the dashboard says. So there.

One thing that doing this blog has done for me is introduce me to a whole lot of fascinating people, and let me call reading and listening to them, research. Now that’s a winner! So I’m going to share one of my guilty pleasures with you. Ever seen one of Bill Whittle’s Stratosphere Lounge podcasts?

Well, here is one, so get a cup of coffee, find a comfortable chair and enjoy.

Later, Gator 🙂

Christmas Week

Well, I got on a train last night to go back east to see my family over the holidays, and Jess is just getting over the flu, so posts may be a bit sporadic for the next week or so, we’ll try but, there aren’t any guarantees.

Being a good Norwegian, I have an excellent understanding of Christmas

I surely hope that houseful of sick women over in England feel better than this by Christmas.

Since I love history, I thought we’d check in on the Ace of Aces in the Great War

You didn’t think I’d leave Bing Crosby out, did you?

We’ll be here as we can be but, in any case

Have a Merry Christmas

 

Happy Birthday, Dad.

Saturday, again, huh? Well we all know what that means here, don’t we? Time to unwind a bit, it’s been a stressful week.

But it’s also the 1st of December, an that’s an important day for me. My Dad would have been 105 today. He’s been gone for over 25 years now but, every time I have a problem one of my key questions is, “What would Dad do (or say)?. If I listen closely, he often tells me, still.

“I cannot trust a man to control others who cannot control himself.”
― Robert E. Lee

The last couple weeks he has seemed especially close, reminding me of a man’s duty. So, I thought maybe we should look at some of the things he loved.

One thing he dearly loved was music, his father did two things: ran the town light plant, and directed the town band, in truth it was the family band practically, of the 10 of them 6 of them were my uncles plus Dad. In his opinion, this was the last great American composer.

I have some problem disagreeing!

I can’t remembering him ever going to a movie, I suspect he got it out of his system when he moonlighted as a projectionist. He’d watch on TV though, usually something like this.

He liked technology a lot too, he had the first TV in town, and when color TV’s started coming out, he didn’t think he could afford one, so he bought a kit and built one. What was on? Good shows, like these.

And for all his insistence that their were no composers after Sousa, he never seemed to have much trouble watching this.

or this

In fact, even the commercials were neat.

But for all that he was a serious man, devoted to keeping the lights on, while keeping his people safe, and he would brook no compromise. He was one of the people who made our lives in the field both easier and safer

Dan Miller ran this song this week, in another context, and in truth he and I both saw it over at the Mad Jewess’es shortly after the election as well. It’s considerably too new a song for Dad to have heard but, it’s a pretty good summary of this article.

It seems a sad song on first listening doesn’t it? But, it’s not really, it speaks to us of the eternal dreams and battles we fight for what we believe in. And those dreams live as long as we are remembered.

A perfect man? Nope, he surely wasn’t, but he was the best I’ve ever known.

“Duty is the sublimest word in our language. Do your duty in all things. You cannot do more. You should never wish to do less.”
― Robert E. Lee

That would have made a good epithet for him

Happy Birthday, Dad, and Thanks.

True Grit

Well, it’s Saturday, and I’m still on my clunker (Thank God for scheduling) but True Grit seems to be a theme lately here and at Jess’s Watchtower as well. I think we were all pretty disheartened by Romney’s loss and Alan West’s concession the other day hurt as well.

But, America is still for the most part, America, and we built it, and we can damned well rebuild it as well. Jess, in her post the other day, here, gave us some pretty good insight on the American myth. As we were chatting in comments, she mentioned as she has before that her favorite movie is True Grit, the real one, with the Duke, it’s one of mine as well, especially this scene,

And speaking of True Grit, Jess herself knows something about it as well, when I realized I was going to be down for a ridiculously long period of time, I invited her here, late in the night in the UK, and practically before I got moving the next morning she had not only accepted but had a post up for us to enjoy. She’s the kind of friend that is always there when you need them, no matter what is going on in their lives.

Jess has mentioned several of those great John Ford, John Wayne westerns in her week with us (I hope she’ll continue here as she has time, I find her view of America to be something special). In fact, Jess herself kind of reminds me of this scene

Kind of looks like her too, don’t ya think? But, you know, I don’t really understand that lecturer’s point, either. Looks to me like he’s doing what Americans have always done, protected the womenfolk while treating them with a good deal of respect.

Jess also mentioned another old favorite

Thing is, the song has been cleaned up a lot over the years. The Yellow Rose of Texas existed though, she was a mixed race whore. If you remember, Santa Anna at the Battle of San Jacinto, got caught with his pants down, literally. That’s the Yellow Rose’s work. A great American (and Texan) heroine, doing her job.

Another friend of ours, Servus Fidelis, mentioned in the comments that John Wayne made some wonderful war films. He’s right of course. This is my favorite scene from John Wayne.

You know, Jess is right, these films aren’t honest factual history in the literal sense. What they are is how we see ourselves, and to a great extent how the world does as well.

My background is Scandinavian  our myths had to do with gods and goddesses. But, we have something else as well, we have our sagas from the time when we went out into the world, and settled Iceland and Greenland, many say we founded both Moscow and Dublin, and the Eastern Emperor’s Varangian Guard were Swedish as well. A little boastful perhaps but, it’s well to remember that the Viking age ended in a resounding clash of arms as the Danish King of England defeated the King of Norway and two weeks later lost to the Duke of Normandy.

That’s what these films are: The Saga of America.

Jess asked her Mummy a very valid question back when she was 10 when she asked “What is America for, Mummy?” But she got it a little wrong, the real question is, “Who is America for, Mummy?”

Because it’s the Saga of ordinary men and women, who dreamed of living free, and were willing to do the hard, dangerous, and often dirty work of making that dream happen. Even if they were a one-eyed fat man or a Texian whore. America has never been about class or social standing. That’s what I think America is, the new start of western civilization and of the people with True Grit.

But John Wayne is dead and the flag is still there so let’s “Saddle up and get back in the war.

,And Jess, “Welcome aboard, Pilgrim!!!”

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