Friday, October 15, 2010

Though I am not a good singer, I love to sing. On the one hand, I'll sing almost anything; my affection for a wide array of pop music is well known (and perhaps derided). On the other, the great hymns of the faith* are often on my lips and heart. One such hymn is "Rock of Ages." The tune of this hymn has been quite varied since its intitial composition a bajillion years ago, but the tune I learned (linked above) through Reformed University Fellowship I'll call "the RUF melody." Whether or not they had anything to do with it. In any case, this particular iteration never fails to sink deep into my soul. I saw an episode of "Little House on the Prairie" where Mr. Ingalls (Michael Landon) sings this at church (and disturbingly low-church it was, BTW), and I have to say, I hated its whole musicality. That original melody sounds like we walked into a saloon. Will I turn to my right and see Yosemite Sam? Just for fun, take the words out. Saloon, right? And not that I dislike saloons. ["A Mighty Fortress Is Our God" was a drinking song.--ed.] I'll drink to that song! In any case, I had trouble finding that first version, but it's definitely the best. This performance has a few mistakes, and surely too many flourishes to sing along with, but I love it.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Delaware Debate for US Senator: O'Donnell vs. Coons:

First 15 minutes--Coons [I am a protectionist, and a redistributionist]. O'Donnell [I am a horrible public speaker, but I am cute and right-wing].

Next 10--Foreign Policy: O'Donnell [You favor random withdrawal]. Coons [It's a random narco-war we cannot win in Afghanistan].

Social Security/Medicare--O'Donnell [I'm not terribly conservative and willing to cut it].

Abortion/Faith: Coons--[I'm allegedly a Christian but morality has no impact in public life]. O'Donnell--[Of course evolution is a myth, but don't make me say it].
Marxism--Coons [I'm a capitalist! I swear!] O'Donnell-- [You are a commie].

Education Reform--Coons [Charter schools rule]. O'Donnell [I don't have the guts to eliminate the Department of Education, but I like vouchers].

Health Care--O'Donnell [Obama care confuses coverage with care, coverage portability]. Coons [I support Obamacare].

CNN idiotically interrupted this debate to tell us about Chilean miners. No offense, but right now, I don't care. In general, I thought this debate is a wash. Coons is right about Afghanistan; O'Donnell is better on education, and the central issue of the election: Obamacare. And Coons should be ashamed to call himself a Christian and unabashedly defend the killing of children. That said, O'Donnell has gone negative, and I don't like it.

Monday, October 11, 2010

I'm not sure how much "secular" music Jesus listens to, [He hears it all, dummy.--ed.] but I'm willing to bet a large sum of money he really likes this song. He might point out, however, that loving is harder is than James Taylor makes it sound. Well, He would know. (God be praised!) In any case, I spent all day (in Mental Conference Room 2, anyway) trying to remember "Everyday" by the aforementioned JT, because I keep hearing part of the song in a phone commercial or something, and thinking, "JT singing this is so much better." Duh, right? I needed a lift earlier (besides the mild annoyance of not being able to remember the name of a song I've heard eleventy billion times) so I looked up "Up On The Roof" and listened to it a lot of times. It's that version he did on "Sesame Street" circa 1976 that rules. I actually heard this song for the first time in 1991 or thereabouts, when JT was a guest on "Saturday Night Live." By the way, if you can sing your 15 year-old rendition of a song you covered at that time, and in fact maintain a rep as one of the greatest songwriters in American history despite doing half remakes, that, friends, is the epitome of being (a) "BA." I can picture this, too: Taylor might just have been walking by in New York City when accosted by Mr. Michaels to please, please, be the musical guest on the show tonight. "What should I sing?" provokes, "Geez, I dunno, sing 'Up On The Roof'! You're James Taylor, who cares? You could sing a song about the grazing habits of sheep in New Zealand, and they'd love it!" At least I'll know why if I buy a fancy-pants cell phone for no purpose whatever. I can blame James Taylor.