(In which history repeats itself.)

Posted by Job O Brother, November 24, 2008 06:10pm | Post a Comment
Jack Ruby Lee Harvey Oswald

It seems like only a year ago that it was November 24. How time flies. Time flies less often than it did, it seems. Probably due to all the crazy “safety” precautions that airports employ now.

You know, they can make sure I don’t carry-on my switchblade, my flame-thrower, or my collection of vintage anthrax samples onto my flight, but they can’t confiscate my NINJA ABILITIES. Think about that one, my friends. My lightening moves don’t fit in no Ziploc baggie.

It was on this day, in 1963, that Lee Harvey Oswald was gunned down by man-about-town Jack Ruby, which brings to mind a song I quite like by Camper Van Beethoven, which brings to mind an album I rather fancy by Camper Van Beethoven.

The album is called Key Lime Pie and it takes me back to my high school days; though not actually my high school itself, because I never listened to rad tunes on campus. Only the Peanuts-like drone of adults as they lovelessly forced us to recite Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet.
Romeo & Juliet
From the scene in which Juliet drinks Romeo's blood while clutching her highly-prized, ball-point pen

It’s a wonder I love The Bard as much as I do considering that nothing was more painful than listening to a classroom full of barely literate teenagers haltingly fumble their way through iambic pentameter. It didn’t help matters that these same teenagers called me faggot to my face and probably f**ked with my locker. (Joke was on them, I never once figured out where my locker was.)

I never plan these blogs out in advance. Hard to tell, right?

I tried to find a clip of the song "Jack Ruby," but it, like my high school locker, remains elusive. But here’s a song from the same album, and you might find it a pleasant surprise, as it’s one of those records that a lot of people have heard without realizing who it was that recorded it.

The song was originally a hit for the British band Status Quo.

Camper Van Beethoven played an in-store at Amoeba Music Hollywood in the past, and I was there, singing along joyfully.

The group also recorded an album called Tusk. “But wait,” you say while balancing a plate of fresh trout on your head, “Didn’t Fleetwood Mac already… whoops!” And now you’ve dropped the fish to the floor, which is why your grandma always warned you to not balance seafood while reading a blog and talking about it at the same time. I don’t know why you don’t listen to your grandma. She’s way smart.

To finish and answer your ill-timed interruption, yes, Fleetwood Mac did record an album called Tusk, and Camper Van Beethoven’s version revisits each song, in order. It’s a delight for those who, like me, believe Fleetwood Mac’s album to be one of the very best in the history of modern music.

Let’s sample some of these gems
Fleetwood Mac...
...and Camper Van Beethoven

Once again, The Mac...

...versus The Van

It's important to note that the above video is something I swiped from YouTube, and features home movies of some baby crying. This baby, as far as I can tell, has nothing to do with Camper Van Beethoven, rather, is the work of some eager new daddy who has a remarkable amount of free time considering his baby is obviously colic.

Anyway, yeah. Jack Ruby. The Kennedy assassination. High school Shakespeare and Stevie Nicks with still some fat on her cheeks. "It's all a rich pageantry," as my boyfriend would say.

I don't plan these blogs ahead of time.

Relevant Tags

Status Quo (1), Camper Van Beethoven (3), Shakespeare (5), Peanuts (3), High School (9), Amoeba Music Hollywood (104), Fleetwood Mac (30)