Friday, April 26, 2013

And A Couple Of Paintings From Sears

I recently moved into a new townhouse with my sister's fiance, and we've been here about two weeks. We're settling in pretty well, but I've mainly been troubled that the walls are still so bare. It doesn't feel like we live here yet.

I attempted to rectify that tonight.

I hope Jake doesn't mind.

Now that feels more like home.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

All The Lonely Feelings And The Burning Memories

I've been watching a few episodes of the first season of M*A*S*H, and I was reminded of a character I'd forgotten about. There was a fourth surgeon who shared the 'Swamp' with Hawkeye, Trapper, and Burns. This guy's name was, apparently, 'Spearchucker' Jones.

"I swear, if you're not talking about my Hail Mary pass...."
Actor and football player Timothy Brown as the good doctor. 
According to Wikipedia the character's full name is Dr. Oliver Harmon 'Spearchucker' Jones. But I am still surprised that a character could be given a somewhat racially offensive nickname on network television, even in the early 1970's. I kinda wondered if the character had been dropped for that reason; but also according to Wikipedia the writers dropped the character because they felt there wasn't room to develop him, with Trapper and Hawkeye being the focus, and also being told that no actual MASH surgeons in Korea were black. 

So where did that nickname come from? Turns out it was in the 1970 MASH movie, which in turn brought it from the original novel. The character of 'Spearchucker' Jones was a surgeon and former football player brought in by the 4077th to play as a ringer in a football game against a rival MASH unit. And yes, the nickname does, at least partially refer to his skill with the passing game. 
"We're not surgeons, we just play them on TV."
Also actor and also football player Fred Williamson, right; Donald Sutherland, left.. 
This would explain why actors and former football stars Fred Williamson and Timothy Brown were tapped to play the character in the movie and TV series, respectively. While such a game never happens in the first season, there is at least one scene in the first episode showing Jones tossing a football with another member of the unit. It seems like a reference to the source material. 

Of course, MASH wasn't the only war movie that Donald Sutherland appeared in during 1970. The other was the combat/caper movie Kelly's Heroes, with Clint Eastwood, Telly Savalas, Don Rickles, and Sutherland playing an anachronistic proto-hippie tank driver named Oddball. 

"To a Pittsburgher like you, a hoagie is some type of...wait, where are you from again?"
Sutherland as Oddball.
Honestly, this bizarre role was much better suited to Sutherland's efforts than his part as Hawkeye Pierce, in my opinion. To me, Alan Alda is Hawkeye and Donald Sutherland is Oddball. Incidentally, that Sherman he drives, as well as the German Tigers that appear are the real deal and a very well-done mock-up, respectively. Since the movie was made in Yugoslavia, the producers had access to genuine Shermans held in reserve by the Yugoslav army, as well as a replica of a Tiger made for a government-sponsored movie about World War II.

Of course, Kelly's Heroes wasn't the only WWII movie made in 1970 that was full of armored action. George C. Scott delivered a masterful performance as Ol' Blood And Guts himself, General George S. Patton in the classic Patton. However, armored accuracy was another story. While Kelly's Heroes was able to present accurate fighting vehicles, Patton, filmed in Spain, went with what was on hand.

"George, it's not fair, using tanks that haven't been designed yet. You've got an unsporting advantage. Not that the fact seems to bother you much."
The armor used to portray American and British tanks in the movie were M24 Chaffee light tanks, while for the German armor, the larger, heavier, and more ironically-named in this instance M47 Patton tanks, both used by the Spanish army, were thinly veiled for the purposes of the movie.

Of course, I've run out of war movies from 1970. 

Monday, April 15, 2013

Saturday, April 13, 2013

I'm Making Records, My Fans They Can't Wait

It's been a few weeks, and I'm updating this post to my current vinyl wants. Self-titled works in caps.

The Messenger - Johnny Marr
Untamed Beast - Sallie Ford & The Sound Outside
Give You The Ghost - Poli├ža
Parrot Flies - Algernon Cadwallader
Up From Below - Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros
Push The Sky Away - Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds
Psychedelic Pill - Neil Young & Crazy Horse
Tempest - Bob Dylan
Wrecking Ball - Bruce Springsteen
Port Of Morrow - The Shins

I did get Wild Flag's debut and I Bet On Sky by Dinosaur Jr. and both discs are phenomenal. Hopefully a VLP will be forthcoming so I can review them for you. I'm also waiting on Cobra Juicy, the new disc from Black Moth Super Rainbow and the Yeah Yeah Yeah's' Mosquito. Sadly, there seems to be no chance left to pick up BMSR's Dandelion Gum on vinyl, unless one comes up on eBay for a reasonable price.

UPDATE: I'm also looking for the Foo Fighters'  Wasting Light and The Replacements' Songs For Slim EP. Songs For Slim is on red vinyl, too, I've been told. I'm a sucker for colored vinyl. 

Friday, April 12, 2013

The Corners Are Glowing

...more lost than M.C. Escher in Intro Geometry.

Would you believe that someone at Current Employer today thought that M.C.  Escher was a rapper?

Kids these days.

Friday, April 5, 2013

It's Like I've Learned How To Breathe Easily

CD number three. Another entry from about late 2006. 
  1. World On Fire – Eightfold*
  2. Ain’t No Easy Way – Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
  3. Nth Degree – Morningwood
  4. Jerk It Out – The Caesars
  5. Clock In Now – The Deathray Davies
  6. Pork Chops – Lumberghost*
  7. C-C (You Set The Fire In Me) – Tom Vek
  8. Hypnotize – System Of A Down**
  9. Hysteria – Muse
  10. Mind’s Eye – Wolfmother
  11. Bug Eyes – Dredg
  12. Cash Machine – Hard-Fi
  13. Monster Hospital – Metric
  14. Hate To Say I Told You So – The Hives
  15. A Million Ways – OK Go
  16. Sweet Troubled Soul – Stellastarr*
  17. Gold Lion – Yeah Yeah Yeahs
  18. Fall To Pieces – Velvet Revolver
  19. Shimmy Shimmy Quarter Turn – Hellogoodbye***
  20. Pattern Skies – The Greenhornes
  21. Rough Justice – The Rolling Stones
* More local bands. Remember The Cycle from installment one? Eightfold is those guys all over again. 
*** Man, I forgot about these guys. What happened to them?