February rambling: Candice Bergen

the nominated Rebecca Jade; the death of Dr. Paul Farmer

From https://xkcd.com/2583/

$778 Billion for the Pentagon and Still Counting

Who Should You Back in the Midterm Elections?

When Discussion and Compromise Don’t Work

Clarence and Ginni Thomas show why the Supreme Court is a problem that can’t be ignored

What if public schools were the target all along? and How the Super Rich Buy Elections to Undermine Public Schools

Walking America: Jacksonville. Community among the expressways, interstates, and boulevards

Nurses’ stories from the front lines of COVID

When Facebook Doesn’t Believe You

In Canada, the Conservative Members of Parliament chose deputy leader Candice Bergen as interim leader on 2 February 2022. This was after the caucus voted to remove Erin O’Toole as party leader by a vote of 73 to 45. Not that one, the performer Candice Bergen. THIS one.

Photographer Nancie Battaglia has captured iconic images at nearly every Winter Games since 1980

Partners In Health announced that its founder, Dr. Paul Farmer, unexpectedly passed away in Rwanda from an acute cardiac event while he was sleeping. Dr. Farmer was 62 years old. John Green on The Death of My Hero. 

He Donated His Kidney and Received a $13,064 Bill in Return

The value of obituaries
An Arizona priest used one wrong word in baptisms for decades. They’re all invalid (May I say this is REALLY inane?)

Ivan Reitman, ‘Animal House’ Producer and ‘Ghostbusters’ Director, Dies at 75. My favorite of his movies was Dave.

It was the most successful Jewish ad campaign of all time — but who was the model?

Did the pandemic change our viewing habits?

Super Bowl commercials 2022

Does the Australian Capital Territory have a coastline? It’s complicated!

A historic townhouse is also a secret subway exit

Should You Use Snow to Water Your Houseplants?

New comic about paper.


Malverne: The Incomplete Struggle for School Integration on Long Island

Don’t Ban Black History, Teach It

Advancing Antiracist Efforts to Improve an Unequal Health System

How UPN Ushered in a Golden Decade of Black TV — and Then Was Merged Out of Existence

Slave-holding New York State Congressional Representatives

Critical Race Theory: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

The Problem With Jon Stewart Podcast with Bryan Stevenson 

Now I Know

The Judge Who Intentionally Sent an Innocent Man to Jail and The Checks That Saved 75 Christmases and  The Fake Witch Who Saved Dozens of Lives and The Very Short Flight You Couldn’t Even Take and The History of Being On Hold and The Boo Racket


National anthem of Ukraine

San Diego Music Awards sets 2022 performers; top nominees include Rebecca Jade

Piano Quintet in A minor by Florence Price

Playing for Change: When The Levee Breaks, feat. John Paul Jones

Seven O’Clock Shout by Valerie Coleman

The Lucky One – Peter Sprague,  Pam Pendrell — vocals

Chariots by Ulysses Kay

Cappriccio italien, Op. 45, TH 47. Mr. Bernstein conducting Mr. Tchaikovsky

Questionable – MonaLisa Twins

Coverville: 1390 – Cover Stories for Melanie, Guns N’Roses and John Williams and 1391 – Cover Stories for Sheryl Crow and Roberta Flack

No, John Williams did NOT rip off Dvorak

Everybody Loves A Lover – Arlene Silver and The Vantastix (feat Dick Van Dyke)

The Great Pretender – The Platters

Shimmy Shimmy Ko Ko Bop – Little Anthony and The Imperials 

Zoot Suit Riot   – Cherry Poppin’ Daddies 

Douglas Trumbull

Vivian Carter: Introducing The Beatles To America

Nina Simone

Documentary review: Ascension

Jessica Kingdon

I recently watched, on Paramount Plus, the documentary Ascension. The film shows that the people of China are also seeking their version of the American Dream.

Some of the workforce is enticed by factory jobs that may involve no standing, though other jobs require being upright. Lots of propaganda about being team players are sometimes administered harshly. The factory workers include women working on the exacting standards for sex dolls; make sure the color of the areola is right.

We see people training to serve the wealthy in their increasingly capitalistic country. Perhaps they would be servants in fancy homes that require fine dining; Downton Abbey was specifically namechecked. Or maybe they’ll become bodyguards, protecting their would-be employers from assassins.

There are lessons on how to smile, how to be positive that you’ll make lots of money. They too can become influencers. For good and for ill, today’s China is looking a lot like the United States.

Before I saw the film, I watched director Jessica Kingdon interviewed on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah. He noted that there was no narration by someone trying to steer a particular point of view, which allowed the viewer to see the larger cultural shift.

Ascension is Oscar-nominated as one of the best documentary films of the past year. It’s a little slow in the beginning, but it proves to be a fascinating take on the economic rise of China.

Lynching Postcards

After I watched Ascension, Paramount Plus directed me to a short documentary Lynching Postcards: ‘Token of A Great Day’. Perhaps more unsettling than the lynchings of over 4,000 African Americans by white mobs were the public, festive occasions these murders became. Men, women, and children out having a picnic while watching a hanging and/or burning. The burnings were particularly popular in Texas.

These lynchings were commemorated through souvenir postcards. And people would send messages pointing themselves out in the crowd. ‘Hey, that’s me, third from the right” with the corpse hanging in the background.

One of the images from the film that caught my attention was The Dogwood Tree, a poem that begins
This is only the branch of a Dogwood tree;

The film is only about 15 minutes. Worthwhile.

Lydster: music for the road

Ben E. King

Madds Buckley
..Madds Buckley, with whom I am totally unfamiliar

On a recent trip, we had a new process for music on the road. My daughter synced her phone’s playlist to the Bluetooth in our vehicle.

Usually, when we travel, my daughter is listening on her headphones while her mother listens to Public Radio. I play Hearts or Spades on my phone or tablet when I’m not navigating.

Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This) – Eurythmics. My wife and I saw Annie Lennox’s work at Mass MOCA pre-pandemic, but our daughter did not join us. I’m a big Eurythmics fan.
Just the Two of Us – Grover Washington, Jr. and Bill Withers. Last song on Withers’ greatest hits album, which I own.
Total Eclipse Of The Heart – Bonnie Tyler. She came across this because it was used on a television crime show she was watching.                                     The Red Means I Love You – Madds Buckley. This is what I was expecting more of. Songs I’m unfamiliar with by artists I never heard of.
Careless Whisper – George Michael

Somebody’s Watching Me  – Rockwell* This features Michael Jackson.
Poison – Bell Viv DeVoe
I Hear A Symphony – Cody Fry, No, it’s not the Supremes song.
As The World Caves – Sarah Cothran
Bills, Bills, Bills – Destiny’s Child. She’s really into ’90s soul.

More tunes

Killing Me Softly With His Song – Fugees. I have this on an album.
American Boy – Estelle, featuring Kanye West (or whatever he’s calling himself)
I Love You So – The Walters
Little Dark Age – MGMT
Space Song – Beach House

Eleanor Rigby – Cody Fry. She had played this earlier in the month to see if I recognized it.
Washing Machine Heart – Mitski
Stand By Me – Ben E King. This was a Triple stumper on an episode of  JEOPARDY back in November
Put Your Head On My Shoulder – Paul Anka. This surprised me.

Ain’t No Mountain High Enough – Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell. Of COURSE, I own this
You’re The One That I Want – John Travolta and· Olivia Newton-John. She actually saw the movie Grease before I did.
Line Without A Hook – Ricky Montgomery
American Pie – Don McLean* The penultimate song played by the DJ at my high school reunion in September.
Meet Me At Our Spot – Willow Smith and Tyler Cole. The former is the daughter of Will and Jada.

*She didn’t actually play this because she became impatient over the advertisements

“I would eventually know everything”

Joni Mitchell and Joe Rogan

World Almanac 2016Once upon a time, as I’m sure I’ve told you, I thought that, if I kept learning, I would eventually know everything I wanted to know. I read the local newspaper and watched the local and national news, first Huntley/Brinkley on NBC, then Cronkite on CBS.

Mostly, I read reference books. A lot. The Encyclopedia Americana, which my parents bought and probably couldn’t afford, I devoured over maybe three years. There was also an annual, updating the information.

Also, from about when I was nine, and for more than a half-century, I would receive the World Almanac for Christmas, and I would read it. Early on, it was cover to cover, but even after I’d largely mastered the tallest mountains, longest rivers, and whatnot, I would read the Year In Review material of the most important stories. It was largely November to October, actually, for its publishing deadline, but it would always capture the Presidential and Congressional elections.

Of course, information exploded. Three TV networks became 373. They keep discovering more moons in the solar system, and more elements for the Periodic Table. Of course, the Internet. The World Almanac used to have a list of Celebrities and I knew who most of them were. If there’s such a list now, I have no idea how they would limit it.

Joe and Joni

All of this to say that, until a couple of months ago, I had no idea who Joe Rogan was. My daughter tells me that she has been listening to lots of podcasts to understand different points of view. This is like when I would read William F. Buckley or watch George Will on TV. So SHE knew who Joe Rogan was and, in fact, says she recommended him to me – this is possible. But she says I said, and this sounds accurate, that I didn’t have time for more podcasts.

NOW I know who he is. Recently, my daughter asked me if I knew who Joni Mitchell is. Oh dear, I have failed this child. I told her that I’d seen her twice in person and bought four of her CDs in 2021. Obviously, she brought her up over Neil Young (who she also doesn’t know) wanting to be removed from Spotify because of the info about vaccines on Rogan’s platform, and Joni following suit.


One of the interesting things I learned about Amy Schneider, 40-time JEOPARDY champion, is that she has a younger partner, which is how she knows more current popular culture references.

I’m fascinated how she missed her last Final. COUNTRIES OF THE WORLD: The only nation in the world whose name in English ends in an H, it’s also one of the 10 most populous. One of my friends deduced, “I thought about what might precede ‘h’ and could only think of ‘s’. From there, my brain ambled over to Asia and found Bangladesh.”

My process was more mundane. I mentally traveled around the globe for the most populous countries, besides the US (#3). Mexico (#10), Brazil (#6), Nigeria (#7), Indonesia (#4), Japan (actually #11 because of a declining population), China (#1), India (#2). Oh, what’s near India? Pakistan (#5). And Bangladesh (#8). (I forgot Russia, #9.)

I have to conclude that Amy did NOT read the World Almanac every year. But she learned a LOT of other info, mostly of recent vintage, that my brain just doesn’t absorb.

Racial Profiling in the Marketplace

Racial Profiling and Social Justice

Every once in a while, I think this blog is useful.

I received an email this month reminding me – and it had slipped my mind – that I had granted permission for the inclusion of my ESSO post to a book. The link was included along with a paragraph from the text in Racial Profiling and Social Justice in the Marketplace. The subtitle is An Inside Look at What You Should Know But Probably Do Not Know about Shopping and Racial Profiling.

I had written: “Esso had quite a positive image, at least with many people of my father’s generation. For there was a time in the United States when many African American travelers were uncertain where ‘they could comfortably eat, sleep, buy gas, find a tailor or beauty parlor…or go out at night… without [experiencing] humiliation or violence where discrimination continued to hold strong.'”

You can read what was included on the Teachers Pay Teachers site here; it involves free registration. A lesson is arranged, not just from my piece but links to other sites, with the students required to answer why Esso was so progressive in an era of Jim Crow, and other questions.

It is only one of several lessons available in the book, which is available for $30 at the Teachers Pay Teachers site here. (I should note that I was not compensated for this plug.)

The blog

Also, check out the Racial Profiling and Social Justice blog. “Mission: Provide insights to students; useful information that may be valuable in their lives. For students, independent learners, parents, and youth educators with an interest in supplemental lessons for ethnic studies and social justice topics.

“As a former plaintiff in a six-figure profiling case, Dee Adams writes about often overlooked issues regarding racial profiling in the marketplace, race, pop culture, entrepreneurs, and social justice.”

Lamphered LLC by Amazon scam

I’ve received over 40 comments to my post entitled Lamphered LLC by Amazon scam. Some people wanted verification that the emails THEY received subsequent to my post were as spammy as they suspected. Others were initially terrified they’d been hacked.

People thanked me and promised to contact Amazon. Many included the versions they received, which differed slightly but were essentially the same premise.

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