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Welcome back, my friends, to the "Battle" that never ends.
We're so glad you could attend. Come inside! Come inside!
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This is 'BATTLE OF THE BANDS' ('BOTB') where you listen to different recordings and vote for the one you like best. A new Battle gets posted on the 1st of each month and on the 7th, I place my own vote, tally 'em all up and announce the winner.
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Friend? Foe? Stranger? No matter, ALL are welcome. So pull up a chair, pour yourself 24 oz. of DOG BITE High Gravity Lager (or the poison of your choice) and turn it up to Eleven!
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[NOTE: Links to the first year of 'BOTB' (#1 - #24) can be found at the very bottom of this page.]

Thursday, September 30, 2021

2021, OCT. 1: BATTLE OF THE BANDS - James Dean Series, #2 of 3 (Or, THE EAGLES VS. JOHN 'COUGAR' MELLENCAMP)

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[Above photo by The Wonderful & Terribly missed Russ Hodson!]

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This blog bit series is dedicated to three persons: 

1: My Ma ('East Of Eden'), who first made me aware of James Dean.

2: My great friend and publicity photographer, Kelly "Andy" Anderson ('Rebel Without A Cause'), who committed suicide in 1986.

3: My great friend and professional acting buddy, Marty "Party" Brumer ('Giant'), who was killed by a car thief in Los Angeles in 1989.

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Yes, it's time once again for Battle Of The Bands (BOTB).

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Alright, let's get on it. Let's get ON this thing!...

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This is Part 2 of 3. Part 1 was HERE, and the Results post for Part 1 was HERE.

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For years, I continued to work in Hollyweird - doing daily 'Background' work on movies, commercials and TV shows to pay the bills; scoring many 'silent bits'; and occasionally getting a bit part with a few lines of dialogue (primarily on 'M*A*S*H' and on a really awful TV show called 'Hill Street Blues').

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The second 8" x 10" publicity photo I used was also taken by my dear friend Kelly "Andy" Anderson. In this picture (shot in the alley behind Kelly's apartment in "Dogtown"), I wore my red James Dean jacket, but since the pic was black & white, it looks grey:

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You can't really see it too well in the photo, but that's my gold hangman's noose charm hanging from a chain around my neck! That hangman's noose hanging around my neck got A LOT of attention from girls, and some of the other 666 genders, also. (Oh, wait!! We only had 2 genders back then. My boo-boo!) The noose made girls curious to find out more about this dark, macabre character. 

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Another publicity photo of me, taken by Kelly Anderson, underneath the Santa Monica Pier:

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I was going more for the 'hopelessly romantic, vagabond singer-songwriter poet' look in that picture. A Saint Christopher medal around my neck instead of the more traditional hangman's noose was meant to convey the idea that I'm dishwasher safe and that I "Play Well With Others". It's also sometimes called "acting"Ha!-Ha! πŸ˜‰

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For many years, I always gave a name to every trip / vacation I went on. During 'The Family Affair Of 1984' (subtitled: 'The General & Us'), my family traveled together to see Cincinnati, Ohio, where my Ma had grown up. During that June trip, we travelled through several other states as well: Kentucky, Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa, Missouri, and Indiana. And while in Indiana, I got to visit James Dean's gravesite in Fairmount for a second time, and my Ma got to see it for the first time.

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On Dean's tombstone, I left a copy of another poem I had written in 1980. Unlike 'September At Fairmount', today, 'A Chance At Heaven' makes me cringe quite a bit. In 1980, I was still 14 years away from becoming a "(Maverick) Christian" and now I can see that I idolized James Dean in an unhealthy, un-Spiritual way. Only one Man deserves the kind of intense respect that I had for Dean back then, but in 1980, I had no real understanding of what Christ Yeshua had done and what His Life & Death really meant. So, this poem(?) is now kind of embarrassing to me, but it certainly illustrates my intense, youthful admiration for Dean and the art of Acting:

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A CHANCE AT HEAVEN -  8-23-1980

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While I sit alone, reels of film play in my head 

Flashing on the screen a reality  

To all I have said

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There was a time when my words spoke my belief 

But now the thought of each statement 

Only brings grief

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For I am older but still the clocks tick away 

And tomorrow is here 

Before I've lived today

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And now in the dwindling days of my youth 

I have chosen you 

As my symbol of truth

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Because I know where you were, I can feel your doubt 

And like you, I am searching 

To find a way out

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I live in my mind, in a world of seclusion 

For I can't find a way 

To transcend the confusion 

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Mislaid in this land, a lifetime to roam 

Safety in loneliness 

The place we call home 

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To exhibit a vision with your rise to fame 

This too is something 

That I'd like to claim 

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Breaking through all boundaries imposed by time 

Yet I'm held back by a fear 

Of attempting the climb 

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And though people argue I have nothing to lose 

What becomes of the dreams 

That I might abuse?

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I guess the heroes are those who gambled that thought 

Got up from the ground 

And persistently fought 

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This is my time to try the chance that I clutch 

To ascend to the heavens 

Beyond everyone's touch 

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And now I am ready to act the ultimate scene 

To reach immortality 

Just like James Dean

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OK, enough of this crap! Let's get on with the music Battle!! Please vote for whichever of these two songs you enjoy hearing most, regardless of the James Dean references. The winner of this Round 2 will go up against David Essex's song 'Rock On' in the third and final installment of this James Dean BOTB series.

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In 1974, The Eagles and their high-speed, Punky guitars really did justice to the legend of Jimmy Dean! The lyric "along came a Spyder, picked up a rider..." is a reference to the Porsche Spyder automobile that Dean died in at the age of 24. 

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"I know my life would look alright - I can see it on the silver screen"

WOW! What a great line! For 67 years, millions upon millions of us have agreed with that!!

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JAMES DEAN (1974) -- The Eagles

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q1Syd7kRIuk

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Next up is 'Jack & Diane' by John 'Cougar' Mellencamp

"Jackie sits back, collects his thoughts for a moment; scratches his head and does his best James Dean"...

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James Dean doing his best "James Dean" :

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Me (on my 22nd birthday) doing my best "James Dean" :

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One thing I like about this song is the line, "Well, then, there, Diane..." It proves that Mellencamp really did know about James Dean, and he wasn't just name-dropping. He was actually quoting Jim Stark (James Dean). Check out these pictures I took recently while watching 'Rebel Without A Cause' for the godzillionth time...

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Dean also said the line in a slightly different way in 'Rebel...'. Why? Because... he was the greatest actor of all time, and like a world-class Jazz musician, he was always improvising 'in the moment'. (Don't worry. If you're not attempting to be a world-class professional actor, then the expression "in the moment" is not particularly important to ya.)

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JACK & DIANE (1982) -- John 'Cougar' Mellencamp

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zjMwrXGk4xU

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I will post this Battle's Results on this blog on October 8th (if I'm not late because I'm too busy improvising my way through life and refusing to be restricted by deadlines and other nonsense). And in my BOTB Results post, I will tell a couple more stories about my former James Dean-infused persona. Maybe we'll finally get to 'M*A*S*H' and 'HELL Street Blues'.

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Thanks for voting! And please spread the word! All voters (and Porsche Spyder riders) are welcome!

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~ Stephen T. McCarthy

44 comments:

  1. Stephen,

    You were a good poet. Do you still write? That's really cool you had a few speaking lines in the TV series MASH. Who knows maybe I saw you in those episodes and to think here we are now blog buds. How cool is that? Hill Street Blues is a series I never got into and I don't know why. It was pretty popular. Anywho, now to your battle. I like both songs which made it difficult for me to pick but I think I'm going with JOHN MELLENCAMP. It may be it matches my mood better or gives me a little more pick-me-up this morning but whatever the reason "Jack & Diane" did the trick. Nice battle! Come by when you can to vote in my BOTB when you have a sec. Have a funtastic Friday, my friend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. CAThy ~

      Thanks for the compliment. Actually, this poem, as I mentioned, kind of embarrasses me. But I posted it because, despite all my seriousness, I still have a self-deprecating sense o' humor.

      The last poem I wrote (or more accurately, attempted to write) was on July 30, 1994, almost 4 months after the Spiritual experience that transformed me into a (Maverick) Christian. It was titled 'The Sea And Me', and it was meant to celebrate my newfound Spiritual worldview. But I never was able to get it just right, and after fussing with it for months, I threw in the towel on it.

      At that point I went on a massive reading binge, and that was the last thing I ever attempted to write (blog bits notwithstanding).

      I still have a notebook with some of my old poetry in it (the poems that didn't get discarded for one reason or another). The poetry notebook is titled:

      Roses Are Red
      Violets Are Blue
      Some Of My Poetry
      Does Not Rhyme

      A couple of poems that still stand out to me as being pert-goot, off the top of my mind, were 'The Mad Dog' and 'First Exorcism Of The New Year'. The title of that latter one still makes me chuckle.

      I used to have a lot of fun playing around with words. I learned how to do that from Roger Miller and Bob Dylan.

      My longest poem title, from Feb. 23, 1993, was...

      'Believing There Is A Possibility That It Might Not Live Up To Its World-Renowned Reputation, I Am Unwilling To Part With My Extremely Hard-Earned And Dismally Meager Funds In Order To Purchase The Ticket Required To Gain Admittance To The Circus That Has Come To Town'

      The title was 46 words long; the poem itself was just 19 words long. Like I said, Fun with words.

      I worked on MASH regularly during the final 5 seasons of the show (1978-1983), so if you were watching it then, you definitely saw me on it. Later, I will show some pictures and mention a few episodes I was in which were particularly notable.

      Thanks for casting your BOTB Bote, CAThy, and I'll be by later today with my own two (or three?) cents for your Battle. ;^)

      ~ D-FensDogG
      LEARN THE HOLY BIBLE IN 15 MINUTES!

      Delete
    2. Stephen,

      Avid readers are have the ability to write well, I think. One of my short comings is I'm not an avid reader. Started off as a slower reader + teacher's belittling just made me feel so uncomfortable that I didn't have any interest in reading for fun. Oh well... enough sob stories. I appreciate the other ditties you shared, especially the one from 1993. That was a fun poem. I can't remember how much I watched MASH during the years you were on the show but I did catch the program on reruns when our kids were young in the 90s. I'm sure I saw you on there, though. Who knew I'd be rubbing cyber elbows with a star one day? I'll be looking forward to the pictures to go up. That'll be great fun. :)

      Delete
    3. Boilerplate Response:
      Mucho, mucho sorry-o for the later than late response!!

      Now that I'm officially "retired", I dun been tryin' to git a part-time business started and it's eating up more of my time than full-time employment ever did. (Retirement SUX!)


      Original Reply to follow:

      >>... Avid readers have the ability to write well, I think.

      You are 423.83% correct!

      I struggled to get a 'C' grade in English throughout Junior High School & High School. But today, I can spot a grammatical or spelling error in 0.03 seconds, and it is ONLY BECAUSE I BECAME A VORACIOUS READER *AFTER* High School (may it go to hell sooner'n satan!)

      >>... I can't remember how much I watched MASH during the years you were on the show but I did catch the program on reruns when our kids were young in the 90s. I'm sure I saw you on there, though. Who knew I'd be rubbing cyber elbows with a star one day? I'll be looking forward to the pictures to go up. That'll be great fun. :)

      I'm definitely NOT a "star" or even a "pseudo-star". In fact, I pretty much relish being the king of the 'Anti-In-Crowd'. [DON'T EVEN GET ME STARTED!!] However, if you really, truly did watch MASH on an even semi-regular basis from '79-'83, or even on reruns thereafter, then it's pretty much a sure bet that you has seen me on yer TV scream. You can let me know fer shure in the comment section of my final 'James Dean BOTB' installment on Nov. 1. See ya then, muh frien'.

      ~ D-FensDogG
      Stephen T. McCarthy 'STUFFS'

      Delete
  2. Not a bad poem in my assessment. Sounds like you really did idolize James Dean back then. I don't think I ever saw one of his films until I was in my forties--maybe fifties--so I couldn't call myself a fan though I was well aware of the legendary persona and the circumstances of his life and death. Guess that's why I had to eventually search out his films to see what it was all about.

    The Eagles "James Dean" song is one of my least favorites of their catalogue, but since it is the Eagles it still is a darn good song.

    My vote is going to John Cougar Mellencamp.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for the bote, MR. LEE.

      The poem... well, it DOES possess plenty of youthful zeal and angst, I suppose. Well over-the-top to be good, methinks, but I WILL confess to still liking this line:

      For I am older but still the clocks tick away
      And tomorrow is here
      Before I've lived today

      I feel that far more acutely NOW, at the age of 62, than I did at the age of 21. It's pretty funny to think that I considered 21 to be the "dwindling days of my youth". Ha!-Ha! It's too bad we all need decades worth of hindsight before we can accurately assess anything about our lives. To quote from the movie 'It's A Wonderful Life': "Aww! Youth is wasted on the wrong people!"

      I never did understand all the Eagles hate that came about in the '90s or 2000s. For a band that so many people claimed to hate, they sure had a ton of (really good) hit songs!

      I'd have to give some thought to what I consider my least liked Eagles song. But my favorite has always been 'I Can't Tell You Why', and I really can't tell you why. More than anything, I guess it's that melody. I remember hearing it through headphones on an airplane flight to New York City (I think) and falling in love with it.

      Thanks again for coming by with two cents for the kitty!

      ~ D-FensDogG
      'FERRET-FACED FASCIST FRIENDS'

      Delete
  3. Not a bad poem! I confess I don't know from poetry, but I know what I like!

    I like both of these songs about the same, so I'm going to use a non-musical reason (a friend of mine liked it a lot and once made a
    record of herself singing it) and go with "Jack & Diane."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, gee, thanks, JOHN!
      (Well, then, there, now...)

      Huh!...
      Maybe the poem's not as bad as I genuinely thought it was. What do I know?! I really thought twice about posting it but then figured: Oh, what difference does it make? And besides that, I've publicly admitted to far more embarrassing things than this over the years!

      What this tells me is that, most likely, the poems I wrote decades ago which I still DO think are pretty good would probably be thoroughly disliked by everyone else. Ha!-Ha!

      Anyway... with three votes in, we've got a shutout in the works. I can't believe The Eagles are going to get shutout. (But at the same time, I can't believe people don't find 'A Chance At Heaven' rather cringe-worthy, so... uh-oh!)

      ~ D-FensDogG
      Stephen T. McCarthy 'STUFFS'

      Delete
  4. [I am posting this comment on behalf of...]

    SHEBOYGANBOY SIX ~


    It is possible that this is the toughest choice for me of all your battles over the years. I really like both songs. The Eagles are SUCH a tight band, with perfect voices, perfect execution, and perfect production. The song is really great, and what is more: the song is literally ABOUT James Dean rather than just mentioning him as is true of most of these choices. I think it would be a good one to watch the Geiger Grade skateboarder video to.

    I don't think you are a fan of Mellencamp and I am no longer one... but I used to be a pretty big fan. I was listening to him early on when he was just Cougar, and I already had previous albums when this one came out. As soon as I heard "Jack and Diane" I told friends that it would be a big hit. They said I was nuts, that it was too weird. Well... hardee har har.

    The song is pretty strange. Very stark musically, it emphasizes the talking-singing of Mellencamp. Though the song is not actually about James Dean, the lazy sexiness of the song really evokes him. The bass line stands out to me and almost makes the song, as does the drumming from the pause point on. I was at a drum clinic one time when Kenny Arunoff (aside: who apparently is really a jerk) told the story of how that "solo" came to be. Mellencamp did not have an actual plan for that transition in the song, but just - on the spot during recording - told Kenny to come up with a cool and dramatic fill just minutes before starting. That was what he came up with, and it is pretty darned iconic.

    I think that this time I will do what I please and vote for Jack and Diane by the thinnest thread of her Bobby Brooks. I’d bet a Giant gusher that you’re voting for the Eagles this time.

    RE; your poem - I liked it and don’t think you should feel the slightest embarrassment. It has some great lines in it, like:

    “And tomorrow is here
    Before I've lived today”

    and

    “I guess the heroes are those who gambled that thought
    Got up from the ground
    And persistently fought “

    I think that you intensely fought for your dream, but it was not to be. As you’ve said recently, God - in His loving wisdom - kept you from that hellhole of Hollywood. Just dipped your pedal extremities into the sulfurous paint pot... no more.

    Sheboyganboy No. 6

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Terrific comment, NUMBER 6!!
      I like how you really analyzed the songs, and I learnt sumpin' new with that story you told about Kenny Arunoff. I couldn't have even told you WHO played the drums on that Mellencamp song. But now I know... "the rest of the story".

      And you're right, I gotta try 'James Dean' in conjunction with that skateboarder on Geiger Grade video -- I think that'll definitely work. Good call! (Incidentally, did you ever try Edgar Winter's 'Frankenstein' on Geiger Grade? It's pretty cool, too! There are so many goot juans that I've lost track of which are my very favorites among my favorites.)

      You were definitely ahead of me when it came to "Cougar". I'd never even heard of him, but then one day Twinkie walked into the Bay Street house and showed me the 'American Fool' album. I guess he had just heard one of the songs on the radio and immediately bought the LP. (Twinkie did a similar thing with Bryan Adams, and introduced me to him in like manner.)

      >>... They said I was nuts, that it was too weird. Well... hardee har har.

      That's a good feeling to prove the overly-confident loudmouths wrong, ain't it?
      Every day that passes, I am also proving countless people who called me "nuts" to be wrong. In fact, most of them are now just as "nutty" I was back in '94 when I first started telling people what was coming soon to an Earth near us. Frankly, I would have rather been wrong... but I'd done my homework.

      Next big prediction: World Enslavement until late 2029.

      >>... I think that this time I will do what I please and vote for Jack and Diane by the thinnest thread of her Bobby Brooks.

      Ha! Great line. (But I thought you always did what you pleased.)

      On Sept. 20th you said to me, "As soon as I heard the theme, I knew I'd be voting for the Eagles anyway." Wrong-o, bar rag breath! (Am I getting that right? Is that how that goes?) But on Sept. 3rd, I texted the following to you:

      "The Eagles song WILL be in Round 2. But it will be up against a very serious competitor who just *might* beat The Eagles."

      Thankfully, Debbie D'Doglady came by and put an end to this potential shutout! (The Eagles told me to tell you, "Thanks for NOTHING, bar rag breath!)

      Coming next: World Enslavement until late 2029.
      (You can trust the predictions of Prophet-DogG! He ain't no Amazing Criswell.)

      Well, I'm pleased (and surprised) as spiked punch that people aren't finding the poem as bad as I thought it to be. I do have a few that I still think, 3 or 4 decades later, are pretty good, but 'A Chance At Heaven' didn't hold up for me. Primarily because I've changed so much, I suppose.

      And right, I have NO regrets about the way things turned out. I consider it a Divine blessing that I didn't end up with a lifetime career in Hollyweird. I'm sure I'm much happier and more content here, where I am, than I'd have been with fame and fortune on that upside-down planet in HelL. A.

      >>... I’d bet a Giant gusher that you’re voting for the Eagles this time.

      You still so sure about that? I mean, considering your track record here? [;-D}

      Seriously, thanks again for the stupendous comment, CITY JAIL NO. 6
      [*Check out again that "Well, then, there, now" James Dean picture above!*]

      ~ Stephen
      'FERRET-FACED FASCIST FRIENDS'

      Delete
    2. CITY JAIL No. 6 sez...

      Check out the intro to this video. Listen to Don Kirschner:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aL_jtkRjZK8

      This was off the Cougar album “Nothing Matters and What if it Did?” It was the album before American Fool, and I really loved it. I went to see Cougar in concert once and he was the warm up for Heart. I went to see him and liked Heart way better; he seemed drunk… although I don’t think he drinks. Not sure about that, but the whole thing was massively disappointing. (Gordon Lightfoot was stoned out of his gourd when I saw HIM in concert and it totally ruined it! Screwed up a lovely song about his daughter!!) Had the album before that one too, which was pretty good: “John Cougar"

      Here is a short clip/story about Kenny Arunoff’s drum solo:
      https://www.moderndrummer.com/2017/05/kenny-aronoff-john-cougars-jack-diane/

      FYI: I had totally forgotten that Jack and Diane even mentioned James Dean, which is why I was sure the Eagles would get my vote against all comers. I almost voted for them anyway! Frankly, I have been hearing their song in my head all week since I hear the battle.

      You asked me if I was sure, and I AM pretty sure you’ll vote for the Eagles. Because of our track record of disagreement about music. Your quoted insult "Bar-rag breath" is EGGzactly right!

      Delete
    3. The Original SHEBOYGANBOY McITCHYFINGER c/o CITY JAIL No. 6 ~

      Are you related to "The ORIGINAL Bad Bob"?

      >>... Check out the intro to this video. Listen to Don Kirschner:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aL_jtkRjZK8


      Yeah! That was well before Cougarmellencamp's reference to James Dean in 'Jack & Diane'. Maybe the mention of Dean was part of his early promotional handouts / printed material for radio stations(?)

      >>... he seemed drunk… although I don’t think he drinks. Not sure about that, but the whole thing was massively disappointing. (Gordon Lightfoot was stoned out of his gourd when I saw HIM in concert and it totally ruined it! Screwed up a lovely song about his daughter!!)

      I once saw (circa 1990) Hank "Bocephus" Williams Jr. at the Greek Theatre in L.A., and I'm pretty sure I was the only person in the audience who was drunker'n "Bocephus" was.

      [GREAT SHOW!!!, by the way. I loved "Junior" even more AFTER the show than I did before it. And I DEFINITELY loved him even before the show! John Wayne! John Wayne!]

      >>... Here is a short clip/story about Kenny Arunoff’s drum solo:
      https://www.moderndrummer.com/2017/05/kenny-aronoff-john-cougars-jack-diane/


      Oh, yeah, I know this guy. I met him MANY times in MANY places. The ONLY thing he really needs in order to get his life in order is for someone to beat his 'Jack & Diane' senseless.

      I'm pretty sure Nappy's available.
      But if Nappy's booked, I can "straighten out his life" for him, with understanding words alone. I did it for my friend Pooh, and even though I'm 62, I'm sure I can still do it for po' Kenny, 39 years later. He just needs an understanding soul to pour his heart out to, or... someone like Nappy to kick his arse out through his mouth. Just... some sort of "good cleansing". There are various avenues that can be pursued.

      Long story short... things you wrote about having trouble posting comments here while logged into Kohmooonisyst "Bad-goooooo-gle" got my grey matter thinkin'. So I did some experiments on two different computers and finally came to the conclusion that...

      Phuqin' Kohmooonisyst "Bad-goooooo-gle" had reset my settings WITHOUT consulting *me*!

      So, I went into my settings and readjusted everything so that.... EVERYONE CAN COMMENT, even if they don't have a Kohmooonisyst "Bad-goooooo-gle" account!!

      So, from now on, when you're attempting to submit a comment, instead of selecting "G Account", just click on "Anonymous", and your comments should still appear on my Dashboard, for me to Approve... unless you've said something negative about Susan Dey's small breasts... in which case you will be... meeting Nappy... as soon as he and I can come to a financial arrangement.
      ([;^D})

      ~ D-FensDogG
      LEARN THE HOLY BIBLE IN 15 MINUTES!

      Delete
  5. Well, then, there, bruddah, you better be careful badmouthing Hill Street Blues. You wouldn't want the leader of the fearsome Shamrocks overhearing that. I hear that guy's like a ginger yakuza. Like Torch, only more intimidating.

    Admittedly, that poem made me cringe, too. Not because I think it's bad, just because of the idolization. It really is quite well written (but hey, what do I know, I only wrote 8 novels). And as a 'silver lining', at least you weren't lifting your 'clean' hands to the sky and praising a giant pharmaceutical corporation, so, then, there's that.

    You know, for all the times I've heard Jack and Diane, I had no idea it was a James Dean related song. I just never really paid that much attention. I also didn't know that fun fact about the "Well, then, there, Diane" line. That's intensely clever. I tried not to let that sway my boting, and yet John Cougar Mellencamp has won me over in every way. I like the lyrics and the story better, and I like the music better. For some reason, The Eagles, in general, just don't do it for me.

    And John Mellencamp isn't bad, but for my money, John Cougar Mellencamp is the real genius.

    If you can't tell, I just love saying John Cougar Mellencamp.

    ~ Julio El Puma Seis-Abeja

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Julio El Puma Seis-Abeja ~


      Well, now, there, then...

      You make a good point -- I sure don't want Tommy Mann mad at me!
      Fun Fact: When Tommy Mann (David Caruso) and his gang, The Shamrocks, first appeared on Hell Street Blues, Torch and I were both members of his gang. In other words, we were there right from the start. I just did a Google search to find the name of the character that David Caruso played and it quickly took me to a photo online showing both Torch and myself in that first Hell Street Blues scene. Torch to the left of Caruso (in red wool hat) and me along the right edge of the picture: https://tinyurl.com/nw5npy7x

      The Shamrocks -- it was the ONLY time Torch wasn't the "leader".

      >>... Admittedly, that poem made me cringe, too. Not because I think it's bad, just because of the idolization.

      Yeah, "I have chosen you [James Dean] as my symbol of truth"

      UHP!... I was an idiot!!
      If you're going to choose one person as your symbol of Truth (capital T), His name should be Yeshua.

      >>... at least you weren't lifting your 'clean' hands to the sky and praising a giant pharmaceutical corporation

      My stupidity can go only so low!

      >>>... And John Mellencamp isn't bad, but for my money, John Cougar Mellencamp is the real genius.

      I agree! He was never as good after he dropped the "Cougar" from his name. If John Mellencamp was going to lose the Cougar, he should have at least changed his name to John Mellencat.

      >>... If you can't tell, I just love saying John Cougar Mellencamp.

      Who doesn't? It's an American tradition, much like how Jerry Lewis is a French tradition! DOH!

      ~ Stephen
      D-FensDogG
      Loyal American Underground

      Delete
  6. Wow, you were on Hill Street Blues? I enjoyed that show! What was bad about it, I wonder? In my opinion, you are a talented writer Stephen, and that includes the poem you're sharing here. Love the publicity shots! You really rocked that James Dean look. 😎

    On to the battle: I have to go with the Eagles as I have an intense dislike for John (Cougar) Mellencamp's music, that song especially! And, they play it incessantly on classic rock radio. 😝

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. DEBBIE D'DOGLADY ~

      Hallelujah! I been waitin' for you! Been holding my breath and watching to see WHO was gonna come along and bust up this shutout for me. And here you came, riding on a white horse, sword in hand, and ready to do battle (of the bands)!

      Whew! Cougar 5 - Eagles 1

      Yeah, I worked on Hill Street Blues quite a bit. One time, I got to do some ad-libbing in a police station scene. That was the only time I really liked being on the set. The rest of the time, it was just a paycheck.

      The problem with Hell Street Blues? Well, one of the problems was how phony it was. I had spent years at a real police department. (I was slippery and hard to book! Ha!) Actually, I had been a Police Explorer in my teens, so I knew how police work was really conducted, and HSB wasn't even remotely close.

      Only on TV shows and in movies (like 'Warriors') do you have a gang of Irish guys wearing green top hats, four-leaf clovers, and carrying shillelaghs. And only on TV does the police captain call all of the street gangs to the police station for a conference on how to behave while some mucky-muck foreign dignitary is in town. It was just over-the-top unbelievable. (But there have been others just as bad -- like 'T.J. Hooker', which may have been the worst cop show ever. Of course CHiPs is right there, and I worked on that one quite a bit, also. Hmmm.... maybe the *real* problem was... me?)

      I will say this, though, Charles Haid (Officer Renko) was a super-cool, down-to-earth guy. He, along with Gary Burghoff (Radar O'Reilly on MASH) was one of the very nicest persons I met in Hollywood. David Caruso was a cool guy, too.

      Hey, thanks for the kind words! I'm beginning to be convinced that the poem really isn't too bad, after all. And thanks also for the "rockin'" James Dean remark. Yeah, when I did "my best James Dean", I don't think it was half bad. [;^D

      I have only rarely listened to Rock radio since about 1985, which I guess is why I never really burned out on 'Jack & Diane'. But I know what you're saying, because radio ruined 'Hotel California' and The Doobies' 'Black Water' for me. ('Stairway To Hellven' too, truth be told.)

      Thanks again for being the shutout buster! I kinda thought that perhaps you would side with the Eagles in this, with their revved-up guitars and pedal to the metal approach.

      I wasn't TOO worried, because I figured that between you, Birgit, Mike, and G-DogG, at least one of you was bound to vote Eagles.

      Hey, incidentally, I like your new avatar photo! It's got a nice, pastel kind of look to it. Almost looks like a painting to me.

      ~ D-FensDogG
      Stephen T. McCarthy 'STUFFS'

      Delete
    2. Glad to be of service. ☺ Seriously, Mellencamp is in my top 5 for most disliked artists. Yuck! Give me that pedal to the metal, every time.

      The characters portrayed on Hill Street Blues were all interesting, but I get that it wasn't very realistic. Renko and Norman Buntz were two favourites. Dennis Franz was even better on NYPD Blue.

      Thanks for the compliment! Not too bad for an old broad, eh? ☺

      Delete
    3. DEBBIE D'DOGLADY ~

      I think Rock 'N' Roll has kept you young!

      Whatever you do, keep on rockin', and never, Never, NEVER turn it down lower than "eleven"! Louder = Younger!

      Ha! We should collaborate on some health-related book...

      'HOW TO REMAIN YOUNG'
      by Dr. Debbie & Dr. DogG

      (Not to be confused with Dr. Jekyll & Mrs. Hyde.)

      That reminds me of the WKRP In Cincinnati episode 'Dr. Fever And Mr. Tide' - Damn, that was FUNNY! Easily one of my favorite WKRP episodes ever!!

      ~ Dr. DogG

      Delete
  7. Yo S-Man,

    Cool stories and pics, I'm reminded of The Eagles' phrase "brutally handsome." And I thought Hill Street Blues was critically acclaimed, so you may be selling yourself short. Or selling yourself long at having more astute standards than critics. In the abstract, I recall the show parallel to Paul Newman's Fort Apache The Bronx, as real as its medium can get.

    "Pretend that I did do it. Pretend that I blew up the whole school. Now that you're dead, what are you going to do with your life."

    - Jason Dean (Christian Slater) better known as JD, in the 1989 movie Heathers as the rebel. He's not a misunderstood rebel, just simply bad and/or done gone full-tilt insane.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0nfXHXMo8Og

    I had the Hotel California 8-track when I lived in New York. (It was hung on everybody's door handle like so many Avon samples). On a fiberglass less-than-a-shoebox width skateboard because we didn't have wide wood boards like SoCal.. seriously, word travelled slow in that era. I like The Long Run album better, some beats are bold. You mentioned in your last post that Rock On has a James Brown sound. I add that Rock On is perfect for a blaxploitation film, like during the opening credits/surveying the city with the hero driving chill in his Caddy. The Eagles' "Those Shoes" would be in the film too.

    Van Halen offered a choice to a new generation: We'll take it. "Yeah but Roth is a complete jerk." We'll take him, first choice on the rock all-stars kickball team. Van Halen's first album, if anyone listened to LA punk which was great but.. Van Halen is more listenable. and punk.

    Cougar isn't an LA sound - more like an Indiana sound. An American sound, by golly.

    And so I say, to John Cougar... fantastic song. Remembering how popular the song was, checking the top songs list of 1982, I expected Jack And Diane to be #1. Jack And Diane is #7 of its year. Though of the top 10 or more, Jack And Diane is the one song that could be top 10 in 1977 or 1987 or 1957 or 1967 (go. to. hell, Bacharach!) Timeless

    In short and in sum, a vote for Cougar.

    Cheers,
    G Dogg

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. G-DogG ~

      Muchos Mickey's Malt Liquors for coming by with several pennies for my pretty kitty!

      I'm sitting here drinking my first egg nog of the season and feel primed to address yer comment. (Wait! Maybe just 40 more ounces of Mickey's first. Standby...)

      Alright, "Let's do it, Lunger! Let's shoot this ph*qer!"

      300 points if you can name the 2 movies I just quoted from!!!

      >>... Paul Newman's Fort Apache The Bronx, as real as its medium can get.

      I've heard of it, but never seen it. Maybe I should correct that.

      Here's a game I just recently started:

      Name your favorite Paul Newman movie.

      It's a toughie, and there are no wrong answers (that I'm currently aware of... but then I haven't seen 'Fort Apache: The Bronx'... yet).

      >>... "Pretend that I did do it. Pretend that I blew up the whole school. Now that you're dead, what are you going to do with your life." - Jason Dean (Christian Slater) better known as JD, in the 1989 movie Heathers as the rebel. He's not a misunderstood rebel, just simply bad and/or done gone full-tilt insane.

      Oh, no, no!!
      I'm not falling for the ol' 'Christian Slater In The Tailpipe' trick!

      If I remember correctly, he started out doing 'Background' work and I think I may have worked with him on a show or two. I'll have to re-check my sources. But he went on to make it big because... some of us refused to sell our souls to... Barack Obama, or whatever name he goes by now.

      In that clip, Slater seemed more R. P. McMURPHY-like than James Dean-like to me, anyway. But then I *could* be wrong. I was definitely wrong on April 23, 1983, so it's possible that I'm wrong again-o!

      >>... I had the Hotel California 8-track when I lived in New York. (It was hung on everybody's door handle like so many Avon samples).

      Oh, I hear ya! 'Hotel Can-Ya-Stop-Now?' Honestly, it's a great song with a justifiably legendary guitar solo, but... Can-Ya-Stop-Now??!!


      >>... Rock On is perfect for a blaxploitation film, like during the opening credits/surveying the city with the hero driving chill in his Caddy.

      Oh, mang! That's brilliant! Ya see?! Ya see?! It's because of *THAT* kind of insight that I didn't block you from posting comments ten years ago!! [;^)}

      >>... Van Halen offered a choice to a new generation: We'll take it. "Yeah but Roth is a complete jerk." We'll take him, first choice on the rock all-stars kickball team. Van Halen's first album, if anyone listened to LA punk which was great but.. Van Halen is more listenable. and punk.

      Actually, I think Roth should be cut up into 4 or 6 different pieces and used as barbell weights, or maybe dumbbell ends. At least he'd be contributing in some way to society then!

      But... yeah, regrettably, I agree with you: When that first Van Halen album hit the stores, Big Al turned me onto it and I actually fell so head-over-heals for it that I actually spray-painted (aka "graffiti") that 'VH' symbol on a few walls in the Dogtown area.

      Although 'Little Dreamer' is the only track on the album that I still really dig biggly, I do remember cruising the Sunset Strip with that cassette blaring from my maroon, 1970 Fastback Mustang, and 'Atomic Punk' was probably the one song I cranked up even above 11.

      >>... In short and in sum, a vote for Cougar.

      Yeah, I know... you ALWAYS did have an attraction for (much) older women, "Cubby". ;-D

      ~ D-FensDogG
      LEARN THE HOLY BIBLE IN 15 MINUTES!

      Delete
    2. ** Alright, "Let's do it, Lunger! Let's shoot this ph*qer!"**

      Ahaha, I get zero points as I checked both quotes via google.  (That's real math - not like Biden and Pelosi wanting to spend 3.5 trillion and saying it "costs zero dollars." So that would mean a Biden proposed 2.1 trillion "compromise" bill will cut the national debt by 1.4 trillion?? Uhhh I'm brain dead by osmosis). The second quote is a crack up as I was expecting a firing squad not Ed Wood. Ahahaha Classic.   

      Most memorable Paul Newman movie is Slap Shot as he played straight man to the legendary Hansons. Slap Shot was of the same era and no-holds-barred as Bad News Bears, both prior to the millennials aka generation Wuss.  

      See 1:09  of https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w1DDuN_eYlg

      The Twitter crowd would pull their hair out... or celebrate they have another gripe. 

      I see some Cuckoo Nicholson now in Slater (good call, S Man) and when he holds a knife and tells Veronica "nag, nag, nag!" it harkens to The Shining typing scene.  After Heathers, he seemed to fade from leading roles.  "Hubris" isn't good on a resume.  

      I remember Van Halen everywhere as well good word pictures as I can.. picture you in the car cranking it on Sunset.. The "VH" is cool.. you may have been one of the last people to do graffiti letters that aren't in cholo style, LOL  

      Outside of LA, Van Halen was what made so many guys think tapping guitar strings at 100 mph (copying Eruption) made them a good guitarist.  And BTW, Van Halen's perhaps biggest and my fave of theirs "Dance The Night Away"?  No gey-tar solo.  You see, fellas, the people don't want self indulgent solos. Why do I feel like Ruben Kincaid.       
      Foxy Cougar Angie Dickinson will always be in her 40s in my eyes.  I didn't mention Ann Margret because from my experience there is a strong correlation between women who dye their hair red and b*tshit crazy. My sample size is large enough, too large really, because they always suckered me in.. past tense hopefully.  Also "older" women are relative because in SoCal at least, many women over thirty or mid-thirties are considered over the hill.  One could figuratively get a primo used 1990 Porsche for pennies on the dollar. What part of "City Of Broken Dreams" don't the new imports on the bus understand, by golly? Get back to Indiana young bloods!

      Cheers Bro,
      G Dogg

      Delete
    3. G DOGG in the House!

      (Do the cool people still say that?)

      >>... Ahaha, I get zero points as I checked both quotes via google. (That's real math - not like Biden and Pelosi wanting to spend 3.5 trillion and saying it "costs zero dollars." So that would mean a Biden proposed 2.1 trillion "compromise" bill will cut the national debt by 1.4 trillion??

      Ha-Ha-Halarious!!!

      >>... The second quote is a crack up as I was expecting a firing squad not Ed Wood. Ahahaha Classic.

      My brother, Nappy, and I live together. And whenever we're planning to go somewhere together, or do something together, the first one who's ready to get started will say either "Let's do it, Lunger!" or "Let's shoot this f*cker!". And if that first person is EXTREMELY anxious to get started, he will put both quotes together, one after the other.

      Another 'Ed Wood' quote we use constantly is, "My next one will be better." You'd be surprised (or maybe not) how often that one can get used.

      "Oh, hell! I hammered that nail into the wrong spot!"
      "Your next one will be better."

      "My 'Battle Of The Bands' contest has turned into a complete blowout!"
      "Your next one will be better."

      "This beer isn't quite cold enough."
      "Your next one will be better."

      >>... Most memorable Paul Newman movie is Slap Shot as he played straight man to the legendary Hansons. Slap Shot was of the same era and no-holds-barred as Bad News Bears, both prior to the millennials aka generation Wuss.

      Ha!-Ha! "Generation Wuss". I'm glad I was in my "Safe Space" when I read that.

      I've seen 'Slap Shot', but not since it was actually playing in movie theatres, methinks.

      >>... See 1:09 of https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w1DDuN_eYlg

      Wow! That could get a person permanently banned from Facebook these days. And what could a banned person do in order to occupy their time? Well, I guess they could go to the library and read 'The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn' -- Oh, wait!...

      >>... "Hubris" isn't good on a resume.

      Yeah, it didn't do me any favors, either.

      >>... Why do I feel like Ruben Kincaid.

      Ha! G DogG Kincaid.

      >>... What part of "City Of Broken Dreams" don't the new imports on the bus understand, by golly? Get back to Indiana young bloods!

      Oh, my, yes!! No one ever served me chili fries at 3:00 AM who wasn't really an "actor" on his way to fame and fortune.

      ~ D-FensDogG
      'FERRET-FACED FASCIST FRIENDS'

      Delete
    4. Good quotes on Mr Wood... I had a box set of his DVDs, past tense because I gave all my DVDs (and CDs) to Goodwill to declutter-icize... (if the internet ever goes down I'm outta luck).. or figuratively living in a cabin like.. Thoreau? or Ansel Adams? Whoever it was, I'd have to start reading books.

      ** G DOGG in the House!

      (Do the cool people still say that?)**

      Ahaha You guessed it. Definitely the proper pronunciation, original from the old school.
      New Jacks try to jazz it up with some bidness talkin' 'bout some "HAY-ouse" or "Hzz-ouse" but you got it right just like a certified classic rap connoisseur.

      That's how Dick Clark stayed young, with his finger on the pulse of America, staying busy separating the wheat from the chaff, by golly.

      I'd paste some links to classic rap songs but think you'd close them faster than the ... euphemism is for closing things fast.. you'd think after all the rap I've listened to I'd have a better.. knack for pizazzy words.

      I'm reminded of Sam Kinison who said that rappers grab themselves a lot and wave their hands in the air "Which is easy to do because they don't play any f--in instruments!!!!"

      C'mon Sam, wherever you are, throw your hands in the air/and wave 'em like you just don't care/and if you want to rock the house/let me hear you say "oh yeah"

      LOL https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zw1m_1XwLpk you could close it down in 15 seconds. Me? On repeat for 2 hours which is why some of my hair isn't gray.. and I can still do a reverse layup and make 2 of 2 underhand free throws on a good day with no wind.

      Cheers and thanks for the inspiration,
      G Dogg

      Delete
    5. G-DogG ~

      I sprang a leak, so I'm goin' Up On Cripple Creek!

      Mucho, mucho sorry-o for the later than late response!!

      Now that I'm officially "retired", I dun been tryin' to git a part-time business started and it's eating up more of my time than full-time employment did.

      Nevertheless...
      "LET'S GO, BRANDON!"

      >>... Good quotes on Mr Wood... I had a box set of his DVDs, past tense because I gave all my DVDs (and CDs) to Goodwill to declutter-icize... (if the internet ever goes down I'm outta luck).. or figuratively living in a cabin like.. Thoreau? or Ansel Adams? Whoever it was, I'd have to start reading books.

      It was Thoreau. ALWAYS go with your first impression!

      One of my all-time prized possessions is a gift my Ma gave me for my umpteenth birthday: A Pink-Angora-Covered Boxed Set Of ED WOOD Movies On DVD. I still own that boxed set, and I still have DVD-playing capability, like any good dinosaur would!

      >>... That's how Dick Clark stayed young, with his finger on the pulse of America, staying busy separating the wheat from the chaff, by golly.

      Hokey-Smoke! "Dick Clark" mentioned in a single sentence along with "by golly" and a Bible reference!! YOU really are the master commenter, and I bow to your... master-commentating.

      >>... I'm reminded of Sam Kinison who said that rappers grab themselves a lot and wave their hands in the air "Which is easy to do because they don't play any f--in instruments!!!!"

      GOL!! All hail, Sam the Man-g!

      >>... LOL https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zw1m_1XwLpk you could close it down in 15 seconds. Me? On repeat for 2 hours which is why some of my hair isn't gray.. and I can still do a reverse layup and make 2 of 2 underhand free throws on a good day with no wind.

      I actually gritted muh teeth and listened to the WHOLE THING ALL THE WAY THROUGH. I did it just to prove to muhself that I COULD - to prove that I was just as tough as you, G-DogG, that I ain't no "chicken" - and to prove to God and Jesus Christ that I can withstand ANYTHING They throw at us in the next 8 years! I'm ready. "I'm a ready teddy!" (1,000 points if you can come up with the movie title for that last quote. Consolation Prize: Nappy wouldn't get the 1,000 points either, and it's his all-time favorite movie!)

      Terrific comment (S-O-P).
      Love ya, McBro (John Wayne! John Wayne!!)

      ~ D-FensDogG
      Stephen T. McCarthy 'STUFFS'

      Delete
  8. Alright, I guess it's my turn to chime in.

    When I saw it would be the Eagles vs Mellencamp, I thought it would be a tough decision. But, even though I really enjoy the Eagles, this was not one of my favorites.

    Mellencamp, on the other hand, as soon as those first notes hit, I'm all over it like white on rice. There's just something about that song..

    So, obviously, I will be casting my vote for JCM! And now, I think I need to go listen to more of his stuffs. Definitely earworm worthy.

    ~MMQE

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. MMQE ~

      >>... I'm all over it like white on rice.

      Wait! Isn't that a racis' statement? I mean, there's brown rice, too. How come you give preference to the white rice?! Why did you relegate brown rice to second class status by failing to mention it? See, you immediately focused on the Whites, and completely ignored the Browns, even though the Browns are rice, too!!

      {*Gee! I do this SJW crapola thing pretty well. Maybe I'm missing my true calling. I think I'm gonna start a new Marxist rioting group called 'Brown Rice Matters'.*}

      Thanks for checking in, MMQE, with your racially insensitive, White supremacist BOTB vote! [;^D

      ~ D-FensDogG
      LEARN THE HOLY BIBLE IN 15 MINUTES!

      Delete
  9. So many people loved Hill Street Blues but i just never got into it. Love MASH though and try to find you in the background in the later episodes. I don't mind if people want to be called something else but it is getting a bit much especially when they take such offence when you don't realize you are saying something wrong. I just found out about Pansexual, Non-Binary and Binary (my niece..oops my brother's child) is binary but maybe she is non binary...WTF do I know. What happened to James Dean's grave? It looks like someone shot at it with a BB gun and took pieces home.
    I am going with the Eagles and this great song. I have never been a major Mellancamp fan but i do appreciate how good he is.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. BIRGIT ~

      Thank you for taking time in the midst of so many troubles to stop by with two cents for my BOTB kitty. I really appreciate it!

      >>... I don't mind if people want to be called something else but it is getting a bit much

      Yeah, like in the late 1970s and early '80s, I just wanted to be called "James Dean", but that wasn't happening. I was "identifying" as James Dean, but I was born too early for the "identifying" gig, so my preference was not honored.

      If I had tried to walk onto the Warner Brothers studio on a day I wasn't scheduled to work there, and I told the security officer that I was "identifying as James Dean", he'd have thrown me out on my ear. But if I tried it today, and said that I was "identifying as Jean Dean" and headed straight for a Women's Restroom, I'd be within my legal rights to do so. Now *THAT'S* what I call "Progress", baby!!

      Ha! (SMH!)

      Thanks again for stopping by, Birgit. I had a feeling you'd be an Eagles supporter, and they sure do need ALL the support they can get at this point!

      ~ D-FensDogG
      LEARN THE HOLY BIBLE IN 15 MINUTES!

      Delete
    2. POSTSCRIPT:

      Oops! Sorry, Birgit, I forgot to answer your question. But, yes, your observation was pretty close to right on...

      Over the decades, Dean fans have chipped off pieces of his headstone to take home as souvenirs. This sort of thing started pretty quickly after he was buried and has been ongoing ever since.

      Personally, I find it really disrespectful and sad. I would have never even considered doing such a thing! It's desecrating his memorial and I have a hard time understanding how anyone could do such a thing, no matter HOW MUCH James Dean meant to them.

      >>... (my niece..oops my brother's child)

      :^D That literally made me laugh-out-loud!!

      ~ D-FensDogG

      Delete
  10. Since M.A.S.H is on at least five times a week, I'm bound to pick you out one day. I'll search until I do - who knew you were a closet celebrity? Cool beans, Stephen T.!
    It's a good thing you wrote the disquieting poem above, rather than acting on the thoughts you had at the time ;-) The composition is such that I wonder how many more hidden talents you have up your sleeve. Glad you're sharing;-)
    I like most everything the Eagles ever did. Except this one. But I'd have voted for JCM anyway; for the song that seemed to vindicate youthful recklessness as a necessary part of the journey. James Dean did that too, with a jacket and a look.
    I don't remember why John Cougar added Mellencamp, do you?
    Cool battle, riveting content!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear dIEDRE ~

      I sed it before and I sez it again: THANK YOU for your continued participation in my BOTB contests. I has a special love for people who regularly vote but who don't even have BOTB contests of their own.

      >>... Since M.A.S.H is on at least five times a week, I'm bound to pick you out one day. I'll search until I do - who knew you were a closet celebrity?

      Actually, I'm a closet closet. I've always tried to play myself off as a basement in my Mother's house, but the truth is out now: I'm really just a closet... in my Mother's house.

      It probably won't happen in my Results post for THIS Battle (I'm completely winging this series as I go along), but I can pretty much guarantee that in Part 3 of this contest (the Super Bowl of my 'James Dean BOTB' series), I will post some photos of me in MASH episodes, which anyone who wants to see me in certain episodes (I don't really know why anyone would), will know exactly which eps to watch.

      >>... It's a good thing you wrote the disquieting poem above, rather than acting on the thoughts you had...

      Ha-Ha!! "Acting"? Pun intended? I know you're a real, true wordsmith, therefore I also know that *may* have been an intended (and highly clever) pun!

      >>... The composition is such that I wonder how many more hidden talents you have up your sleeve.

      Well, truthfully, I *CAN* rub my belly and pat the top of my head simultaneously. And I *AM* able to roll my tongue up into a tube. I've often heard and read that many people can't do those things. Unfortunately, I've never been able to burp 'The Star-Spangled Banner'. The furthest I've ever gotten is, "O, say, can you". And I only ever did *THAT* but once, after Thanksgiving dinner in 1978. Yeah, unfortunately, I peaked while fairly young, and it's been all downhill ever since.

      >>... I don't remember why John Cougar added Mellencamp, do you?

      Yeah, actually, Mellencamp is his real surname. Some early agent or promoter felt he should use the name "Cougar" instead because - well, Cougar sounds cooler than Mellencamp. Over the years, John Cougar fought to reclaim and record under his real name. He never did like the 'Cougar' sobriquet given to him by... "the man".

      Thanks again for your continued support, dIEDRE!

      ~ D-FensDogG
      LEARN THE HOLY BIBLE IN 15 MINUTES!

      Delete
    2. POSTSCRIPT:

      Everyone hates "the man".
      Even "the man" wants to...
      [Link> Stick it to "the man".

      ~ D-FensDogG

      Delete
  11. And Stephen,

    Quite a battle you got goin on right here. I actually do like both songs, each has a unique feel and sound. The Eagles do a good job of conveying Dean's spark and life cut short. I do recall listening to Jack and Diane at Bay Street in the shadows of the living room as well as watching the video on the MTV which seems to have always been on when we weren't watching football, baseball, basketball and the greatest American sport of porn. While the Eagles bring the energy with their song I think John Mellencamp paints with a broader brush and captures the essence of life and love in a small town in the post James Dean era.

    Hell, everyone wants to be James Dean up until the tragic accident. I also recall you donning the Red Jacket from time to time and if it helps, I thought you were cool. But then again...you fill in the blank. But I wouldn't mind going back to those days in the 70's & 80's when we had so much raw energy that we seemed to release during the nights of the endless summer. So give grab your Red Jacket, a six pack and a half pint, and meet me in the chop-top Cadillac. The Santa Ana winds are blowing, the full moon is rising, the night is young and so are we!

    Vote is for Jack and Diane.

    JW,
    Pooooooooooh!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ...And, POOH, that's not all!...

      As I told you it would, did a Mickey's buzz bomb help you to forget that you forgot?
      (Mickey's malt liquor is the ONLY medicine I have ever needed. It even helped me to forget that I used to have remorse for having no remorse!)

      >>... I do recall listening to Jack and Diane at Bay Street in the shadows of the living room as well as watching the video on the MTV which seems to have always been on when we weren't watching football, baseball, basketball and the greatest American sport of porn.

      HA!-HA!-HA!
      Every time the police pulled up in front of our Bay Street house, it was because of Jack & Diane. (Except for that one time when EIGHT police cars pulled up - our all-time record - which was actually NAPPY'S fault! I never felt so ashamed before, or since, in my entire life. That Nappy! If he weren't my Brother, I'd deny I ever knew him.

      >... While the Eagles bring the energy with their song I think John Mellencamp paints with a broader brush and captures the essence of life and love in a small town in the post James Dean era.

      OK, who the phuuuu* are you, and what have you done with my friend, Pooh?!
      "Broader brush... essence... post James Dean era"...
      If I say "couch", what do you immediately think of, Mr. Broader Brush Essence salesman?!

      >>... I also recall you donning the Red Jacket from time to time and if it helps, I thought you were cool.

      OK, OK, I take it back! You can be a door-to-door Broader Brush Essence salesman if you wanna be! Who am *I* to dujge?!

      >>... the nights of the endless summer.

      DAMN! That was damn good, Pooh!
      A little Beach Boys, a little Sunspot dance club in Malibu, a little Zucky's heave-ho, a little nightcap of Chili Fries at Tom's #5 at 3:00 AM, a 90% hangover at 8:00 AM, and a little Mickey's hair-of-the-dog what done us wrong -- all of that was included in those 6 words. YOU the one who "beee!" the real poet on this post!

      ~ D-Fens
      (the "Dog" was already mentioned: see "hair-of...").

      Delete
    2. POSTSCRIPT:

      We were the knights who say...

      "Endless Summer!"

      ~ Hair O' The D-FensDogG

      Delete
    3. POST-POSTSCRIPT:

      How could I forget?...
      (Mickey's, obviously.)

      "THE HANGOVER WALTZ" at 8:30 AM
      (aka Side 2 of The Beatles' 'White Album')


      "Every time a Mickey's malt liquor bottle empties...
      an exhausted guardian angel
      gets its wings."


      ~ D-FensDogG
      LEARN THE HOLY BIBLE IN 15 MINUTES!

      Delete
    4. I am laughing out loud regarding the couch reference! Thought I would impress you with that high falutin language. And if I didn't impress you I would at least confuse you. Also laughed out loud at the last Mickeys quote. I may be responsible for launching squadrons of Guardian Angels. Be well my friend,
      JW
      Pooh

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    5. ...AND, POOH!...

      As I always said (most often in the 'Lucky Liquor' store on Lincoln Blvd.),...

      "If you're only going to give one guardian angel its wings...

      ...you might as well make it SIX guardian angels."


      I mean, in "essence", isn't *THAT* what I was always saying?!

      ~ D-FensDogG
      LEARN THE HOLY BIBLE IN 15 MINUTES!

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  12. Hi Stephen, Excellent poem and I love your adorable - I mean ruggedly handsome photos! I always enjoy hearing about your acting stories, and "Hill Street Blues" was a big deal. Sorry you didn't have a good experience there. I'm also sorry that like James Dean, you lost your dear friends so young. James Dean was so talented. You probably already know this, but he used to date Jerry Seinfeld's TV mom Dizzy Sheridan. Thought that fun fact would help lighten the mood! Thanks for reminding me of that great line about James Dean in "Jack & Diane." John Cougar Mellencamp gets my vote. Thanks for another fun BOTB!

    Julie

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    1. GEM JULIE ~

      It's always a joy to find you here with your two cents. I THANK YOU!

      >>... Excellent poem and I love your adorable - I mean ruggedly handsome photos!

      Well, gee-whiz & golly, too! Thank you!

      "adorable" -- Whew! I feared I might lose my Man Card for a moment there. I could sense it teetering on the edge, with the abyss below -- that abyss where Man Cards go to die.

      Yes, indeed I did know about Dizzy & Dean. Had James Dean lived, perhaps Jerry Seinfeld might have become his son... in some television parallel universe of some kind.

      [Don't axe me to 'splain that. I have no idea what I'm writing most of the time. The voices in my head dictate and I just do the typing.]

      Yes, I lost three good friends much too young. (One of them was murdered by the police.) If not for my strong faith, I'm sure I'd be a real basket case. Well, I guess I mean, "a "worse" basket case. (And some people wonder why I add whiskey to my coffee and vodka to my milkshakes. [;^D)

      Thanks again for stopping by, Julie. I hope the rest of your week is simply wonderbar! (A Dutch girlfriend taught me that word ages ago. I can no longer remember what her name was, but I DO remember "wonderbar".)

      ~ D-FensDogG
      'STEPHEN T. McCARTHY REVIEWS...'

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  13. The Eagles get my vote on this one

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  14. Al Bondigas here. Sorry I'm so late to the dance, but I've been busy procrastinating. I hope you'll understand. This is an easy rulin fer me. I really like the song "Jack and Diane" a lot, it brings me way back to the great times we all shared, in a better time and place. I really miss those days and the wonderful friends we were blessed to have. "James Dean" by the Eagles is nowhere close to one of my favorites. I like the energy throughout, but it's just a so-so song to me. Anyway, rulin fer "Jack and Diane". That's it, that's muh rulin'. Now back to my procrastinating if I'm not to lazy to get started.

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    1. JUDGE AL ~

      >>... I've been busy procrastinating.

      How did that old song go? Oh, yeah...
      "Nobody doesss it be-eee-tter..."

      >>...This is an easy rulin fer me.

      OBJECTION!!
      The judge has already made up his mind.
      I call for a mistrial!

      >>... the great times we all shared, in a better time and place.

      Oh, yeah, I remember that... if you do.

      >>... Now back to my procrastinating if I'm not too lazy to get started.

      You'll get 'round to it.
      And if not...
      ...your next life will be better.

      ~ D-FensDogG
      'FERRET-FACED FASCIST FRIENDS'

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