All the cool kids are doing it.
Proving once and for all that I have my finger on the pulse of what youth today really want, I’m continuing my list of favorites from the so-called Golden Age of Radio. You older, out-of-touch squares can stop reading now and go listen to punk rock or trip-hop or whatever it is seniors are into these days.
Now that the fogeys are out of the (metaphorical) room, read and listen on...
Let’s consider a comedy, namely, Our Miss Brooks.
Premiering in 1948, Our Miss Brooks was an immediate success, garnering awards and a loyal fan base for its lead actress, Eve Arden.
People don’t speak of Eve Arden as much as her talent warrants. She had fantastic comic timing, capable of evoking laugh-out-loud moments with a single, monosyllabic word.
Our Miss Brooks has flimsy, unimaginative plot-lines, and you’ll never listen to it because you “can’t wait to find out what happens next.” The show is great because the cast is great, and Eve Arden delivers punch-lines with such wry deftness, it’s as if Touchstone from As You Like It has been reincarnated as a public high school teacher.
Don't try this at (my) home.
I haven’t had a good night’s sleep in days; what sleep I have gotten is mostly thanks to the fine folks who make Motrin PM. (In the interest of full disclosure you should know that while McNeil Consumer Healthcare – makers of the aforementioned drug – are not a sponsor of the Amoeblog, they do give us free donuts on Mondays and occasionally wash our cars for an extra buck or two.)
While my Mom was kind enough to pass down to me a knack for cooking and robust health, I also inherited her tenuous sleeping habits. We deal with it similarly, too: we listen to the radio to keep our minds from, as she puts it:
“Going, going, going… just making plans and playing with ideas.”
Or, as I put it:
“Obliterating my peace of mind with the chaos and fury of post-traumatic stress fantasies catalyzed by a cruel and crippling world.”
It’s semantics, really.
Mom likes to treat this with AM radio, a favorite program being Coast to Coast. While this particular broadcast seems to promote a nightmarish reality of government conspiracy, alien invasion, body snatching and morally questionable fringe-sciences, she finds it delightful. That she does speaks to her unwavering trust in our fellow man and her willingness to believe everyone deserves to prove their innate goodness – even if, I suppose, it’s lizard-men from another planet who are covertly running our government.
Here's a picture of Jake Gyllenhaal spitting out sea water and a dead unicorn.
The day after Thanksgiving I was returning my home to its normal layout. (We’d transformed our living room into a banquet hall; it looked good, but I still don’t know how I’m going to repair the dent in the floor left by the wind octet.) In the process of carrying the pool with live swans upstairs to the sewing room (you have to make due when living in the city) I heard a sound come from my lower back that sounded like an excerpt from a composition by Harry Partch…
Yes, Christmas came early and Santa brought me sciatica. (Even though I specifically asked for a pony. With sciatica.)
What is sciatica? It is a set of symptoms including pain that may be caused by general compression or irritation of one of five spinal nerve roots that give rise to each sciatic nerve, or by compression or irritation of the left or right or both sciatic nerves, the source of which typically stems from tiny devils prodding the inside of your bowels after the neighborhood witch has cursed you.