The random 2022 post

Carnegie Hall

ice tireThis is the random 2022 post. I think I stole the idea from near twin Gordon. Some folks, such as Kelly, will highlight particular posts. “If you have a blog or other online writing forum, share some of your favorite work from this year.” That sounds like an intriguing idea, but too much work when I can just punt

January 21: What ordinal number is your favorite band’s best album? “Conversely, there isn’t a major Motown artist whose first few albums I would peg as their best, except one.” This was lots of fun. Thanks, Greg.  

February 27: Documentary review: Ascension. “Perhaps more unsettling than the lynchings of over 4,000 African Americans by white mobs were the public, festive occasions these murders became.” I watched the Chinese documentary, then Paramount Plus rolled me to Lynching Postcards, a chilling documentary short.  

March 23:  The follow-up post: ice, COVID, more. “I’ve been trying to access the records of the court case involving my grandmother, Agatha Walker (later Green), and my biological grandfather Raymond Cone from October 1926.” The next sentences: “Alas, I got word that they can’t find the records. They may have been misfiled or destroyed.” Sigh, big time.  The photo above is from this post. 

April 28: Not running for office. “At some level, when I was much younger, I suppose I thought I would someday consider running for public office.” Nope.

May 17:  1972: “Have you ever been convicted of a crime?” “The link has a number of resources.” This was about my “criminal” past and “Ban The Box.”

June 7: Kottke.org – a “quality hyperlink product”. “Lydia Davis was one of the FFAPL Literary Legends in 2021.” A rabbit hole I fell into. 

The second half

July 26: The Lydster at Carnegie Hall. “We took a taxi to the venue and got there by 7:30.” This was probably the most fun I had with my daughter this year. 

August 6: 1972 #1 hits: Watergate break-in. “American Pie, Parts I and II – Don McLean, four weeks at #1.” A Saturday music post.

September 15: September rambling: perfect Yiddish word. “In Memorium Video from this year’s Emmys and going about a decade back.” A linkage post.

October 25: Plan B, when you’re tired. “We have since canceled three hotel reservations.” About the fact that nothing was going according to plan because of COVID, my wife’s leg infection, et al.  

November 18: Me in the autumn of 1979. “In many ways, I remember 1972 better than 1979.” Things in my 1979 diary are totally foreign to me.  Weird.

December 2: From politics to library science. “He blinded me with science!” My life choices.  

Not incidentally, I was weirded out about the passing of Armen Boyajian on December 5. He’s a guy I’ve known since high school who’d been commenting on my blog recently. I answered the question specifically for him, which he may not have seen.  

Random posts, or the illusion of same

MLK, blogging, music, movies, race, anger…

randomHere is my annual compilation of random posts from the previous year by month. Or maybe it’s an illusion. “Humans tend to see patterns when, in fact, the results are completely random.”

Speaking of which, Kelly “randomly” selected the Concerto No. 1 in F minor for piano and orchestra, by Alexander Glazunov. You should listen. 

January. MLK: When Peace Becomes Obnoxious. “I come to declare war over injustice.” This is from a 1956 sermon. This was a catch-his-breath bit because the sentences before and after are much longer and detailed. Still relevant, and possibly more so.

February: Death of the Times Union community blogs “’Nothing urgent, but please give me a ring if you have a few minutes — cell is…'” Casey Seiler, the editor of the Times Union newspaper, was the caller. I was surprised to discover that, although I was not dependent on the TU blog – I have this one, after all – I was still sad to see it go.

Looking into the future

March: Paul Whiteman and the hits of 1921
“’After all is said and done, there is really only one.'” The lyrics are to a tune called Margie by Eddie Cantor. I have a version of the song by Ray Charles. The nice thing about the series is that, if I’m still blogging, I know that in October 2029, I will be writing about the #1 songs from 1999. Hint: one of them is Smooth by Santana featuring Rob Thomas. I have the album from which that song was pulled.

April. Review: Judas and the Black Messiah. “FBI director J. Edgar Hoover (Martin Sheen) considered Hampton a threat to decency in America and wanted him surveilled from the inside.” It was one of my favorite films of the year.

May. Critical Race Theory. “Much of the recent discussion seems to center around the response by Senator Tim Scott to President Biden’s ‘Can’t Be Called the State of the Union’ address.” I don’t know why I wrote about CRT. Almost no one was talking about it in 2021.

June. Musician Nils Lofgren is turning 70. “He was a two-time member of Ringo Starr’s All-Starr Band.” A friend of mine told me this fall they never read my music pieces because they don’t care about music. OK.

Side Two

July: Anger, a national disease “But living near a hotheaded neighbor who thinks we’re always calling the cops on her -I did once, because of the dog – unexplained noises at night are unsettling.” I BELIEVE that my neighbor moved in December, thank Allah.

August: Sunday Stealing, March 2020. “But only the ones I feel like answering.” When I get stuck or busy or tired, the quiz is the way to go.

September: The SCOTUS abortion ballet. “In a state that leads the country and much of the developed world in the rate of maternal mortality, women in Texas will now have to travel to another state to secure an abortion or resort to life-threatening back-alley coat-hanger abortions.” And SCOTUS has taken up the Mississippi law. I fear this will not end well.

October: Rhymin’ Paul Simon turns 80. “I got Stranger to Stranger in 2016, when it came out.” Paul Simon and Stevie Wonder were my favorite musical artists in the 1970s.

November: The way-too-detailed diaries. “I wrote or received letters from people A, B, and C.” My disappointment was that the diaries so far hadn’t gleaned much useful bloggable information.

December: Six Legends of Baseball. “Minoso lead the American League in being hit by a pitch for 10 seasons.” That would be Minnie Minoso, who played primarily for the Chicago White Sox.

Random post and ABC Wednesday

My best to Melody

random numberOne of my annual rituals is to select a post for each month of the previous year. I use a random number generator, which may actually be random, or not. It’s adequate for this exercise. I like to see how well it reflected that year just passed, or did not.

Statistically, I had been writing one ABC Wednesday post a week. I hadn’t mentioned this, but after 25 rounds, the meme has come to an end. Not having it in 2020 is a mixed bag. On one hand, I have to come up with one more post per week.

On the other, HAVING to come with some abecedarian post has become more difficult. Also, that weekly post has postponed other items I wanted to share. Best to Melody, the third and last moderator after Denise Nesbitt and myself, who is recovering from a heart attack last fall.

For my blog, I also create one music piece each week, link summaries twice a month, maybe a couple dozen folks turning 70, pieces about my daughter once a month. So the frequency should be related to that, theoretically.

I’m fairly sure I got this meme from Gordon, who lives in Chicago and still remains the only non-local blogger I’ve ever met. I love it because it’s quasi-mathematical.

The graphic came from typing into Google random site:.gov. It’s attached to the 2018 article, “NIST’s New Quantum Method Generates Really Random Numbers.

The links

January: “This man is doing so much damage to the country I love and causing so much anxiety and pain among the poor and the non-white that I can’t make fun of his hair anymore.” Mark Evanier on how unfunny a certain person is.
February: “I’ve asked for the soundtrack for my birthday.” This is from my review of the Oscar-nominated Polish-French film Cold War (Zimna Wojna). Eventually, I downloaded three songs.
March: “Green Book: History vs. Hollywood.” A link.

April: “I know about balancing a checkbook, applying for a business loan, trying to get a better rate on a credit card.” Me giving advice to the son of my friend Deborah. I cited my experience at FantaCo as being useful as a librarian.
May: “Someone I was unfamiliar with responded, ‘What is [the infection rate] in the countries from which most of the persons who enter this country illegally?” Someone asked me about the measles outbreak. Two out of three people bringing the disease into the US from overseas are American citizens.
June: “FantaCo, 05/1980-11/1988 – the comic book store/publisher/mail order place.” The difficulty I have had leaving some jobs.

And more links

July: “On Saturday, October 5th, the event will be at the Broome County Forum Theatre, and on Sunday, October 6th, go to the Helen Foley Theatre at Binghamton High School.” I had thought to go to Serling Fest: Twilight Zone at 60. It didn’t happen.
August: “Andrew Yang (89%) may have ideas other than his one-note giveaway.” My disdain, even then, of so many debates.
September: “We Need to Rethink Our Ideas About Aging”. Linkage.

October: “At this moment, a case making its way through the court system is garnering an unusual amount of attention.” About double jeopardy v. dual sovereignty.
November: “Becky, the black waitress (Melody A. Betts), reminded me of the white, wisecracking Flo on the TV show.” My review of the musical Waitress.
December: “While I’ve seen Jeff in a few films, I’ve NOT seen most of his iconic roles.” Jeff Bridges’ birthday.

Random 2018: Poisson Voronoi

It is the Poisson Voronoi, and I have no idea what that means.

At the beginning of each year, I select a post for each month of the previous year, using a random number generator, which may actually be random, or not, but is adequate for this exercise. I like to see how well it reflected that year just passed, or did not.

Statistically, I do one ABC Wednesday a week, at least one music piece each week, link summaries twice a month, maybe a couple dozen folks turning 70, pieces about my daughter once a month. So the frequency should be related to that, theoretically.

I’m fairly sure I got this meme from Gordon, who lives in Chicago and still remains the only non-local blogger I’ve ever met.

I love it because it’s quasi-mathematical, like doing the first level of these Brilliant quizzes that I get in my email and occasionally get right. “You have a one-day streak going.”

The graphic came from typing into Google the phrase random site:.gov and picking the first image containing the color green. It is the Poisson Voronoi, and I have no idea what that means. It came from meshing.lanl.gov, the Los Alamos National Lab.

January: “[Messina] also assembled The Kenny Loggins Band by summoning old friends..” -belated 70th birthday for Kenny Loggins
February:
“This means your visitors may see errors or be unable to access your website at all for brief periods of time.” – Technical difficulties with blogging.
March:
By 9th grade, I started carrying around my Bible to school. – Obit for evangelist Billy Graham

April: It is “a phrase popularized by U.S. Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis… to describe how a ‘state may, if its citizens choose, serve as a laboratory; and try novel social and economic experiments without risk to the rest of the country.'” – ABC Wednesday about the marijuana laws in the US
May:
“This two-record set was issued in 1971 by United Artists Records and features music which Winwood performed with The Spencer Davis Group, Powerhouse, Traffic and Blind Faith.” – Steve Winwood hit the big 7-0 on a Saturday
June:
It’s getting warmer and you may find yourself gazing out windows that you will once again have to fill with ugly old a/c units instead of the beautiful Kapsul you hoped for. – Another delayed Kickstarter I’ve supported

July: They must have determined I’m no longer a likely terrorist. – The infrequent airline passenger.
August:
PORN STARS, PLAYMATES, AND PRAYER CIRCLES – linkage, and the title, no less, of the post
September:
After BlacKkKlansman, which the three of us saw at the Spectrum Theatre in Albany, my daughter wanted to be held by her parents. – Movie review

October: The Rule of the Uber-Rich Means Tyranny or Revolution – linkage
November:
Neither victim was a publicly known person; they weren’t activists in their respective civil rights struggles. – I connected Matthew Shepard with Emmett Till
December: Those of you too young to remember the days of disco may not understand how truly reviled it was. – Another double play, with Donna Summer: music and she would have been 70

Interestingly no political ranks except in the links.

Random 2017 posts, a New Year’s tradition

Someone had suggested I put some pro-vaping info on my blog recently, as a result of my previous annual Great American Smokeout posts.

In the beginning of each year, I select a post for each month of the previous year, using a random number generator, which may not actually be random, or not, but is adequate for this exercise. I like to see how well it reflected that year just passed, or did not.

I figure if I do ABC Wednesday once a week, it should show up once or twice. Those link summaries are 2 or 3 times a month, so a couple of those too, I imagine.

And Allah help me, but I have no idea how many times I mentioned, or at least alluded to, the current American regime. It was painful enough to live through, and I might have to regurgitate it? Them’s the rules.

I’m fairly sure I got this from Gordon, who lives in Chicago and still remains the only non-local blogger I’ve ever met.

But I love it because it’s quasi-mathematical, like doing the first level of these Brilliant quizzes that I get in my email and occasionally get right. “You have a one-day streak going.”

The pic is me putting in a random search in Google limiting to .gov site. The pic’s from NIST, but I don’t know the context.

January: Mary Tyler Moore: “girl with the three names”
1974: AITF, Paul Sand in Friends and Lovers#, MTM#, Bob Newhart#, Burnett (hr)

When one of my favorite actresses died, I noted the CBS lineup during the run of the show named after her. AITF is All in the Family. MTM is of course the Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Bob Newhart Show is the one based in Chicago, and Burnett is The Carol Burnett Show. The # indicated shows produced by her and then-husband Grant Tinker’s production company.

February: Smoothing over rough edges with friends
The message the sender thinks she’s giving is “I’m a good friend/relative, just trying to be helpful.”

Answering Chris’ Ask Roger Anything question, citing Deborah Tannen’s 2001 book “I Only Say This Because I Love You: Talking to Your Parents, Partner, Sibs, and Kids When You’re All Adults”

March: March rambling #2: Vitiligo As Body Art
This is what happens to your body when you stop having sex

Landing on a provocative link.

April: Systematically listening to the music
LOTS of Paul Simon gets played in October, so the S&G is played in November, for Art’s birthday.

Explaining the pathology of my CD playing.

May: Q is for Quisp and Quake cereal
It [Quisp] was brought back in the mid-1980s, then again in the 1990s and in 2001, where it was relaunched as the “first Internet cereal”.

ABC Wednesday post about my fascination with breakfast cereals.

June: June rambling #2: Sheila E. and Lynn Mabry
Anita Pallenberg Passes Away at Age 73

The second death I’ve hit on.

July: Music Throwback Canada Day: The Guess Who
“Quality Records credited the [1965] single [Shakin’ All Over] only to ‘Guess Who?’ in an attempt to build a mystique around the record…”

I’ve been doing Music Throwback almost weekly as well.

August: August rambling #2: Mamihlapinatapai
He has a fake Civil War monument at his golf course and Lies About His Reaction To Charlottesville

Ah, the first tRump references

September: Enroll in the Equifax free ID theft protection ASAP
You may have heard about the Equifax cybersecurity incident potentially impacting approximately 143 million U.S. consumers.

One of the relatively few times I posted twice in one day.

October: Q is for a Famous Quotation
That apparent need to always say SOMETHING is often to the detriment of the speaker, and, quite often, of us all.

For ABC Wednesday. The quote was: “It is better to remain silent and be thought of as a a fool than to speak up and remove any doubt.”

November: E-cigarettes: a solution to smoking?
“In addition to the unknown health effects, early evidence suggests that e-cigarette use may serve as an introductory product for preteens and teens who then go on to use other tobacco products, including cigarettes…”

Someone had suggested I put some pro-vaping info on my blog recently, as a result of my previous annual Great American Smokeout posts. But, in doing the research, I became less than enthralled with this alternative, though I suppose it’s better for people already smoking.

December 18: Xmas: St. Nicolas Day to Russian Christmas
What is Santa’s favorite sweater?
His Fleece Navidad

ABCW: I HAD to give you the following line, or you’d be lacking the payoff
***
And now the Kickstarter I’m supporting (deadline: Wed, January 10 2018 11:59 AM EST). LOLISTRAW is the world’s first edible, hypercompostable straw aimed at replacing the 500M plastic straws used every day in the US.

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