Monday, June 23, 2014

Edison Lighthouse "Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)"

The One, the Only, the Edison Lighthouse!

Edison Lighthouse
Edison Lighthouse!
So you miss the Seventies? Or you missed the Seventies? Come with us for a brief return to the most fabulous decade of the late 20th Century!

Somehow, "Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)" has acquired a life of its own. It was a great song in 1970, did well on the charts, but then, a lot of songs were great back then and did well on the charts. However, "Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)" endures. I can't explain it. Sure, it's catchy, but there were a lot of catchy tunes. But people continue to love it! Anyway, on to a classic music video from before the time of music videos.
I love this music video of "Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)" by Edison Lighthouse, which was made way back in early 1970. Edison Lighthouse was a one-hit-wonder band, but "Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)" is an undeniable classic and one of the greatest songs of the '70s despite also being one of the first.
You may remember that "Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes) was featured in the Jack Black comedy "Shallow Hal" (2001). Great film, I loved it, it gets five stars, go see it some time. But we're dealing with the song here, not the film.

The song is great, but the videos are even better. The guy they portray as being the lead singer (Andy Locke) in the "performance" video actually wasn't, it was another guy (Tony Burrows) who they didn't think was photogenic enough. In fact, it doesn't look like anyone in the video is actually playing.
Have to admit, the guy they feature looks like he should be the lead singer (Locke had a very slight resemblance to David Cassidy). In fact, there was no "group," it was just a bunch of talented session musicians who were guns for hire and decided to put something out themselves. That's how they did it in the old days. And it worked, as this song proves.
Edison Lighthouse
Who is she? Nobody knows. But there is endless speculation.
Oh, the other video with the dancing girl is by far the most popular music video from any song released in 1970 and much more popular than the performance video. Well, I'm not absolutely sure of that, but I defy anyone to find me a pure music video deriving from that year that has more views (15 million at last count). Who is the girl? Nobody is sure. There is lots of speculation. The dancing scene comes from a brief clip in an Army Training Film. Yes, a US Army training film. Yes, you read that right. Army. Training Film. I've seen the training film and, no, there are no other dancing girls in it and the only reason you should try to dig it up is if you really want to join the Army. And no, the dancing girl is not listed in the credits.

Now, some people think they know who the dancing girl is. I've seen various names thrown out, such as Kam Nelson, Kameron Nelson Seagren, and various other permutations on the same theme. Others claim that it is just some random WAC soldier named "Marilyn" or some chick they picked up in a bar once back in 'Nam. Nobody, but nobody, is sure.
Victoria Vetri in "Assignment: Earth"
Finally identified after 51 years! The world is saved! (April Tatro, "Assignment: Earth"). But the girl from the "Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)" video two years later sadly remains unidentified.
But people are interested. I'm sure someone somewhere is hot on the case. Some guy is hunched over his pc right now trying to hack into the US Army database to see if there's a call sheet in some forgotten file from 1970 listing the actresses for that training film. (Oh, you think I'm kidding, some guy finally in 2019 finally dug up a dusty old call sheet from "Star Trek" and cracked the case on who played the cat character in the 1968 episode "Assignment: Earth," I kid you not.) This is the kind of thing that occupies fellows when they're not in the office trying to figure out the right flyby orbit past Mars or cracking the DNA of some Denisovan bones. You think they spend the same amount of time trying to decipher the Voynich Manuscript? Think again!
Edison Lighthouse
"Shallow Hal" features "Love Grows" (Where My Rosemary Goes)."
But back to the performance video. They really were shameless back in the day.

Then there are the repeated butt shots, and just to drive the point home they switch to close-up on the final pass.

Word is that this was filmed in the English town of Bristol, but don't hold me to that. The group - the musicians - were English, and some are still active in the business. It was for a tv program, perhaps the 1970 John Byner pop music show "Something Else." But don't hold me to that, either. An awful lot of top songs in those days never had any videos at all, so this one is kind of special.

In those days, they only did music videos (called "promotional films" before MTV) when a band was asked to perform on someone's tv show. Well, unless you were the Beatles, who did them sometimes anyway.

And if that weren't enough, there's the guy with the briefcase about halfway through who gets caught going home for the day, immortalized forever in a music video and he may never even have known it.

Featured only a few years ago in "Shallow Hal," this is one tune that does deserve to be remembered. If you were alive when this was on the charts, you didn't need to be reminded.

Oh heck, here's another version.

And another.

And another take from everyone's fave '70s duo.

So '70s, man. Groovy.

Edison Lighthouse
Hey, you in the lower right with the briefcase - you're immortal now!


Sunday, June 22, 2014

Quite Possibly the Cleverest Dog that Ever Lived

smart dog

I love this dog!

This may be the smartest dog that ever lived.
When you see a video clip like this, you start to wonder just how smart are dogs, anyway?

Look at him test the water - "Oh, too cold!" he's probably thinking. Then, no hesitation whatsoever at any point, he sees a better way...

I would only be more impressed if he took out a paddle and started rowing. But one probably wasn't handy, and he was in a hurry...

I know people that would fool around looking for half an hour looking for poles and such before they'd come up with something like that.


Why Horseback Riders Are Brave People

horseback riders are brave people
Magnificent creatures.
I know, you love horses. They're such splendid creatures.

All perfectly true. But there is another truth about horses, too.

Horses are extremely dangerous at times.

That's just a fact. We're not trying to say horses are terrible. They can just be dangerous.

horseback riders are brave people

Horses get spooked easily. It doesn't matter if you are on one, or it is just standing there idly watching the day go by. Some horses are worse in this regard than others. But, any horse can be spooked.

Suddenly, something will happen and - whoosh! - off it goes.

Going over fences on horses is particularly dangerous if they're not specially trained and controlled. Even then, it's dangerous. Just like those scenes in "Gone With the Wind" (there were two fatal horse accidents, remember?), which were very realistic. Horse accidents were almost common back in the day.

Imagine being on this horse when it suddenly decided to take off. Over the fence it goes - and whammo. You're still there. Well, you're there, under the horse now.

And horses are heavy. Your body has no chance if one falls on you.

Christopher Reeves.

Life is full of risks. That's why insurance companies have so much money.


Optical Illusion - Which Way is the Train Going?

This Will Freak You Out

optical illusion

Time for an optical illusion. Which way is the train below going?

optical illusion - which way is the train going

This picture offers some insights into how parochial our minds are.

Take a glance at the picture. Which way is the train going? Is it going into the tunnel? Or is it coming out of the tunnel? It can't be doing both, it is one or the other. The people on the platform may be waiting for the local, so you can't go by them.

Look at the picture for a little while. You don't have to intently focus on it, but just watch it. The train will probably keep going into the tunnel for a little while.

Yes, this takes just a touch of patience. It may take as long as 30 seconds.

Just let your eyes drift over the scene. Keep glancing over at the moving train. If you are having any difficulty figuring out what is going on, shift your focus from the white train panels to the red ones.

Do you see it? I won't tell you what happens, you can enjoy figuring that out yourself. If nothing happens, then that means something, too, though I have no idea what.

Our minds are hard-wired from eons of evolution to interpret images in a certain way. We do not necessarily see what is there - we see what is supposed to be there based on millions of years of minds processing information.

The free will of the body's senses - to coin a phrase - is a joke. We're all primitives seeing things the way we're supposed to, not necessarily what is actually happening in reality. It is inside pretty much everybody. Look at the train, and after a few more moments you should be able to figure out how to make the picture change at will.

Yes, it might make you a touch dizzy - so don't do this while driving!


Just Let It Go

have serenity
Here boy!
Sometimes, it's better to just let it go.

just let it go

Chasing a pup all across creation? Sometimes, it's just not in the cards. You have to let it go, or it will drive you crazy. Those terrific opportunities seem so easy to achieve, and then they slip right through your fingers.

When you try to force something, you'll often just create the conditions for what you want not to happen.

And then, a lot of the time, when you stop trying so hard - it happens. Because it was meant to happen.

Don't drive yourself crazy about what you could have done differently. Sometimes, it's not going to happen, no matter how hard you chase something. The wisest thing you can do is figure out what you can do, and what you can't. That is the hardest thing to do in life.

You need to have a sense of serenity about things, knowing what is achievable and what isn't. If you manage that one thing, just that one little thing, you undoubtedly will be a great success.

Try and fail, sure. But choose your spots.

just let it go
Well, nice try. Time to dry yourself off and move on.
Just let it go.


When It's Time to Move On

Sometimes, You Have to Change Course

choices decisions

Well, well, well, what do we do now.

choices decisions
Time to turn around!
Just a few thoughts from someone who, like everyone else, has made mistakes.

We all have to make decisions. It's easy to look back on the ones that didn't turn out so well - that job you took you didn't like, that relationship that ended badly - and beat ourselves over the head about it.

We all stupidly place ourselves in bad places at times in our lives - that's just part of life. Mistakes create opportunities for success. Re-assess the situation and make another decision. Suck it up and move on to the next stage and be glad you'll live to fight again.

Keep a cool head, decide what to do, and do it. Don't listen to anyone else, think for yourself. Almost always, there's plenty of time to get it right if you just do it calmly, take the proper action and avoid panic. Don't berate yourself for your stupidity in placing yourself so close to disaster - it's not worth it. It's done and now you have to move on and make the choice that's right at this moment.

We all tend to overlook the good choices that we made and obsess about the bad ones. Make your choices and live with them, and just be happy that you had any choice at all. Sometimes the obvious choice is the one to make but it does turn out badly. You'll have future choices to correct it if necessary.


Best Tennis Shot You'll Ever See

Grigor Dimitrov amazing tennis show
Grigor Dimitrov is in the near court.

Grigor Dimitrov amazing tennis show

Grigor Dimitrov is a top-20 Bulgarian professional tennis player. His career high singles ATP ranking is No. 12, which he achieved in May 2014 and his highest ranking in doubles is No. 66 in the world.

This shot is probably the most memorable shot of his career. How on earth do you top a drop shot like that?

Oh, and this shot is good, too, but not quite like that one:

Great tennis shot


Saturday, June 21, 2014

It's Not Like They're Keeping Score or Anything

Chicago sinkhole

Somebody's tragedy is somebody else's statistic.

Ring up another one, boys!
So, just when you think things can't get even worse...

Notice how quickly they flip that counter to show car number four is going to the crapper - it's not even in the hole yet!

It's not like they're keeping score or anything.
You can just read the news producer's mind - he's waiting, waiting, waiting... "Come on, sinkhole, come on, you can do it, you can do it... There she blows, go for four!"

If you ever wondered if people were sitting back and instantly leaping to keep track of your every misfortune in life - there you go.


Scariest Thing You Will See Today

Scariest Thing

Scariest Thing
Well, hello there!
This is just pretty scary. Some days you're the windshield, and some days you're the ... fish.

I am told it is a Bobbit worm - I sure hope I don't ever walk by one on the beach and have it jump out and grab me!

I understand from some quick research these Bobbit worms are worse than the Viet Cong if you get on their bad side. Mean little things, really tough to kill because even if you slice it in half, segmented worms just grow back whatever they lost. And they wind up in a lot of unsuspecting owners' fish tanks somehow, probably brought in via coral or such.

According to Wikipedia,
"Armed with sharp teeth, it is known to attack with such speeds that its prey is sometimes sliced in half. Although the worm hunts for food, it is omnivorous. It is also covered in bristles that are capable of a sting that results in permanent numbness in humans."
and get this: that's a little one in the video, they can grow to sizes of nearly 3 meters (9.8 ft) long.

I do think that name is kind of funny for that creature, though. Lorena Bobbitt would be proud!

"I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure."


How to Learn to Pay Attention

how to learn to pay attention
Well, just an ordinary street scene.
It's important to pay attention to your surroundings.

And here, my friends is an object lesson in that old saying, "experience is the best teacher." Pay attention!

This kind of thing happens more than you think. Yes, it's easy for me to sit back and be a wise guy and laugh at the poor schmoe hurting himself like that (the way he bends down afterward to pick up his teeth that were jarred loose is classic).

I was once in Greece, in probably the most remote spot I ever went to there - only stayed a few minutes, it was a kind of rough area and I never did manage to make it to my crazy objective because the connections were just too dicey - just walking down this quiet village street when suddenly this amazingly pretty Greek girl appears out of nowhere and decides to come over and say hello (yes, she spoke English in a halting fashion, most of them do if they want to even if they indicate otherwise 'cuz they're not in the mood).

I was astounded at my good fortune and so walked down the street beside her, so absorbed in the absolute novelty of this situation and her company that I smacked my head hard into one of those street signs, like the round "do not cross here" kind, though it could have been another kind - I didn't really stop to look afterward, and obviously I didn't see it beforehand.

I mean, it just jumped out at me! Those street signs are rough!

pay attention
It was kinda like this.
Man, that sign rattled, and so did my head. But that was nothing next to the mortification of having this girl I was vainly trying to impress look over at me and gasp, "Oh, are you ok." Well, no problem, that happens all the time to me. You get the idea.

Pure mortification. Earth, swallow me whole now.

Anyway, so, all appearances to the contrary, I do feel for this guy and I am not laughing at him at all. Been there, done that, got the big "L" on my forehead in more ways than one. But at least my performance wasn't captured on a Russian car cam!


How they clear the Snow off Trucks in Russia

rough roads of Russia

In Russia, bridges are for clearing snow off your truck.

rough roads of Russia
Clearing snow off your truck, the Russian way!
I was kidding around a few posts ago when I implied that Russian truck drivers really aren't quite as tough as they like to make out to the foreigners. I mean, how tough can they be... right?

But here we have the proof that, in fact, only real men drive trucks in Russia.

You're just cruising down the road, minding your own business. Hey, yeah, I saw that truck over there, I'll have to pass him in a few...


Russian truck drivers are like Chuck Norris, they don't clean their trucks off of snow - they make the trucks clean themselves!

I wonder what kind of tickets you would get in the States for pulling that particular stunt. I have a feeling the points would add up on your license real quick.

Rough roads of Russia!


How they drive in Russia

How they drive in Russia

In Russia, you do not drive roads, roads drive you!

How they drive in Russia

In Russia, many, many cars are equipped with dashboard cams because there is so much insurance fraud there (I am told). This produces some awesome videos, such as the time some blokes driving on a highway got showered with debris from a passenger airplane crash. Wild stuff happens on those rough Russian roads, and it's become a bit of a mystique - "Driving the Russian Roads to Hell and Back!"

There are actual youtube videos - an entire category of them, in fact - of ordinary Russian trucks driving through snow and crossing rivers and plowing through mud and such. These boys want you to know that they mean business when they get behind the wheel!

Well, they like to act all tough about it, but the above is what's really going through these bad boys' minds when they brave the mean streets of Minsk.

Notice in that brief video, by the way, how the windshield gets cracked upon impact. Do you think the truck on the right stopped?

I bet you it did not!

Mean streets of Russia!


Expect the Unexpected!

expect the unexpected
Were you expecting that?

Okay, what are you NOT expecting here?

expect the unexpected

One of my running pet peeves with the world is those clowns who think they're being brilliant when they tell you sententiously to "expect the unexpected."

expect the unexpected
Expect it!
They deliver this pearl of wisdom, then sit back, put their hands together in one of those little crosses at their chin, and get this wicked Yoda-smile while nodding their head slowly, as if to say, "Let it sink in deep, boy, you'll thank me someday."

expect the unexpected
So, were you expecting this, smart guy?
You can just read their thoughts as they lean way back and point their head briefly at the ceiling. "Wow, I have just conveyed on this dope the wisdom of the ages, the secret to my success, and he still won't do it and I'll still wind up firing him like everyone else."

expect the unexpected

Well, bucko, I will expect the unexpected, thank you very much, and here's what you'll get the next time you act like a pompous prig about it!


Put 'er There!

Put 'er there
Put 'er there!
Hello, put 'er there!

Trust me, I've known some people who weren't as clever as this dog!

Good dog! Put 'er there, dog!

That's exactly how a good politician does it, too. Tell you something about politicians? Or maybe about dogs.


The Importance of Communication


Well, let's learn to trust one another!

The importance of communication

Communication is important!

Sometimes when I am writing - I write sometimes, and not just here - I wonder sometimes how much I have to spell things out when I really need things to be understood.

Do I need to put in a lot of explanation? Or can I just put in some hazy, cloudy background and know that the reader, being extremely clever and way ahead of me, would be bored with all that explication and just skip over it anyway, loudly commenting to their seat-mate on the train, "Man, I could write better than this jerk!"

This little video, though, kind of puts it all in perspective for me.

failure to communicate
"What we got here is... failure... to communicate."

How Stupid Are They?

So, Just How Stupid are They?

John Cleese how stupid
John Cleese explains it all for you.
We finally get an answer to the age-old question.

John Cleese how stupid

And herewith, we finally get an answer to that age-old question,

How Stupid Are They?

Now, I'm so glad we got that settled. It's been killing me.

Alanis Morissette how stupid are they


Guy Advice: How Not To Play Ball With Your Daughter

How not to play ball with your daughter

There is a right way to do things and a wrong way.

How not to play ball with your daughter

This is a primer to all fathers out here:

How Not To Play Ball With Your Daughter.

Yes, this could be the best advice you ever receive about this.

Thank you for your attention to this serious matter.


Friday, June 20, 2014

Audrey Hepburn Beauty Tips

Audrey Hepburn
Audrey Hepburn's beauty tips.
This will be completely misleading until you actually read the tips. But they really are beauty tips, in fact, the best I've ever seen.

All appearances to the contrary, Audrey Hepburn did not have a care-free life. She was doing things to help others even as a youngster in war-torn Europe, raising funds for the Dutch resistance by dancing - which led to her subsequent career.

Beautiful sentiments from a beautiful - and IMHO also underappreciated, though I don't expect anyone to agree with that - lady. She wound up her life as a major booster of the poor people of the world via the UN program UNICEF. If you do follow these beauty tips, you will be the most beautiful person in the world to many, many people. And the best thing about these particular pointers? They apply to everyone.

Truly, words to live by.

Audrey Hepburn
Audrey Hepburn looking lovely while hailing a cab in 1951, long before she became famous.


Thursday, June 19, 2014

Spock Meets Batman

Batman Batgirl Spock Star Trek
Adam West, Yvonne Craig, and Leonard Nimoy.
This is another in my continuing "Worlds in Collision" series, which also features Spock meeting Dr. Smith from "Lost in Space."

You're probably saying to yourself, "So what? It's just a photo." Ah, yes it is. But I can find a way to extract something out of it!

Here, we have our favorite green-blooded Vulcan from "Star Trek" as he meets Batman. Yes, that's the original Batman standing there with Leonard Nimoy. For good measure, that is also the original Batgirl, Yvonne Craig, standing with them.

Just as in our photo of Nimoy standing casually with Jonathan Harris, there is something equally fascinating about this photo, which undoubtedly was shot on some studio back lot:
notice that Leonard has his Spock hairdo!
I just find that endlessly fascinating. Nimoy must have spent days or even weeks at a time looking exactly like Spock, on camera and off.

One other oddity about this shot:
Nimoy is wearing the same clothing as when he met Dr. Smith.
The same day and event? Perhaps, though the setting looks a lot different. Maybe there was a "fan appreciation day" or something like that, where they assembled the stars of leading television series of the day. "Star Trek" was made by Desilu for Paramount Television, "Batman" was a 20th Century Fox Television program, and "Lost in Space" also was a 20th Century Fox Television production, so perhaps Nimoy simply was paying the Fox sets a one-day visit.

If you're really good, you realize without my mentioning it that Spock has another connection to Yvonne Craig. Yes, she appeared in one of the classic "Star Trek" episodes, "Whom Gods Destroy." She was Marta, the sexy little mental patient who pointed a phaser at Spock and asked Captain Garth if she could blast off one of his ears. So, she is a member of a very exclusive club, an actress who appeared in both "Batman" and "Star Trek" (and she also dated Elvis and was in his movies, but that's another story). No wonder she's standing between them.

Spock in that episode had this to say about Yvonne's character, who had first seduced Captain Kirk, then tried to kill him:
“She seems to have worked out an infallible method for ensuring permanent male fidelity.  Interesting.”
Yvonne Craig Star Trek
"Star Trek" had a thing for sexy green girls.
One final thought: this was just a photo of a few Hollywood B-actors enjoying their fifteen minutes while appearing in '60s tv shows, right? Well, if you looked them up, you would find that all three of them have credits relatively recently, though all now have passed away (Nimoy in 2015, West in 2017, Craig in 2015).
Leonard Nimoy, active 1954-2014
Adam West, active 1951-2018
Yvonne Craig, active 1957-2011
They have worked in tv and film for well over 50 years, each one of them (Yvonne took a long break to work in real estate, but she's back). Yes, a simple snapshot - of three of the most successful working actors in the business early in their careers.