Saturday, May 30, 2020

Idle Hands Have Contributed to the Rioting Protesting the Death of George Floyd

The death of George Floyd is tragic to say the least.  It was criminal for former police officer Derek Chauvin to press his foot on his neck for over 8 minutes while he was handcuffed on the ground.  The other police officers on the scene did nothing to stop Chauvin who was rightfully arrested and charged with third-degree murder.

There is a right to protest in American society guaranteed by the constitution.  However, it must peaceful and not infringe on the rights of others.  I was aghast to watch the nightly news and observe the violent protests in Brooklyn.  The protesters were obviously venting at the NYPD who had nothing to do with the crime in Minneapolis.  Protests there and in other cities have resulted in the destruction of businesses owned by people with no connection to the murder.

These last few months have created much unhappiness for all as recreational, and cultural activities were stopped by the COVID-19 crisis.  The protesters in Brooklyn and in other cities had nothing to do and used the situation to vent their frustrations.  The cliché “Idle hands make for devil’s workshop” applies here.  The protests about the Eric Garner murder were much less violent.

I certainly hope that justice will prevail here.  In 1999 Amadou Diallo was murdered as 4 police officers shot him 43 times.  The trial was moved from the Bronx to Albany and the cops were acquitted.  The Eric Garner case dragged on for 5 years as the cop involved was not criminally charged and was only fired from the NYPD.

I hope Derek Chauvin’s trial will be held in a timely manner and in the community where the crime happened.  He should be convicted and given the maximum sentence for third-degree murder.

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Hopefully Greed Will Not Kill the 2020 Baseball Season

The following statement on Twitter by Max Scherzer is very disturbing: "After discussing the latest developments with the rest of the players there’s no reason to engage with MLB in any further compensation reductions,”

Since the current proposal by MLB is to play 82 games, the players are willing to take half their salary.  However, since playing in empty stadiums would greatly reduce income for the owners, players are being asked to take further reductions in compensation.  I read somewhere that a baseball team would lose $640,000 for each game played in an empty stadium.

Max Scherzer's salary calls for $191 Million over 7 years.  Can he afford to take a reduction so that games can go on?  The lack of professional sports over the last 10 weeks has caused much unhappiness among Americans.  Let Scherzer and other multi-millionaire ballplayers observe all the people waiting in line for food.

These professional athletes are making millions for playing a boy's game.  They can take a cut in salary for one season.  Hopefully, greed will not kill the 2020 season.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

More Random Thoughts

Yesterday morning in Cunningham Park in Queens there were several police officers giving out masks.  Out of three people, one took the mask and wore it while the other two took the masks and held it in their hands.  I have observed about 80-90% of all people wear masks.  I just hate it when it fogs up my glasses. 

When I pass by an elementary school in my neighborhood in the morning there are two crossing guards just standing around.  Why are they need when there is no school? res It is just a waste of money.  Can they at least be repurposed to do something constructive?

Public and university libraries have been closed since mid-March.  Certainly, many but not all resources are available electronically.  In the past 2 months I have used several electronic books and sent them to my Kindle.  Not all books are available electronically, and many seniors (not me) are not tech-savvy and can't access those resources.  Here is a suggestion - Library users can locate print books through the online catalog and state which library they can pick up the book.  The branch would need to be open only a few hours a day and require masks and social distancing for their employees and patrons coming in to pick up books.

Monday, May 25, 2020

Which Version of I Heard it Through the Grapevine is Your Favorite

There are 3 excellent and distinctive versions of I Heard it Through the Grapevine:

  • Gladys Knight and Pips
  • Marvin Gaye
  • Creedence Clearwater Revival

Saturday, May 23, 2020

May 24, 2020 - Saluting Bob Dylan on His 79th Birthday

At age 79 Bob Dylan has passed the test of time with flying colors.  There are very few entertainers who appeared in the early 1960s and are still performing.  The Never Ending Tour started in 1988 but unfortunately the Coronavirus pandemic put it on hold.  I am listing my favorite song from each decade.  I hope he enjoys his birthday wherever he is.

  • The 1960s - Maggies Farm
  • The 1970s  - Forever Young
  • The 1980s - Neighborhood Bully
  • The 1990s- Not Dark Yet
  • The 2000s -  Summer Days
  • The 2010s - Duquense Whistle
  • The 2020s - I Contain Multitudes

Friday, May 22, 2020

Random Thoughts about the Coronavirus Situation

I sense that people are getting more and more restless about the "Pause" inactivity due to the Coronavirus.  It is a "drag" to have to go outside wearing a mask, but we must do it to stop the spread of this dreadful disease.  Thankfully, the numbers of hospitalizations and deaths are going down, but it will not go down to zero until there is a vaccine.  Once a vaccine is developed, it will take a long time to mass-produce it and distribute it to billions.

I tend to doubt there will be a baseball season in 2020.  There are two many medical complications in protecting the players, managers, coaches, trainers, and others from the dreadful virus.  Many players are complaining about getting less money.  They are greedy as they are making millions by playing a boy's game.  Owners feel that they will lose more money if games are played in front of empty stadiums.

I don't think that basketball and hockey should resume their seasons.  All, but the diehard fans have likely lost interest.

There is also a question about professional football where there is the most body contact and likelihood to spread the virus.  Would they have to play in empty or partially-filled stadiums?

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

WCBS-FM is Doing a "Listener-Generated" Countdown for Memorial Day Weekend

A radio tradition is returning to WCBS-FM this weekend as they will be airing a "listener-generated" countdown of the "Greatest Hits of All-Time.  This issue has been discussed on various radio message boards over the years.  The station will only play hits consistent with their format and will also juggle numbers around to get a desirable music mix. 

I rarely listen to WCBS-FM anymore since they focus on the 1980s hits which are not my "cup of tea".  They don't want listeners in their 70s like me anyway,  Just to be "spiteful" I voted the following as my top hits of all time.

  1. In the Still of the Night by the Five Satins
  2. Like a Rolling Stone by Bob Dylan
  3. Mr. Tambourine Man by the Byrds
For years In the Still of the Night was voted the #1 oldie by WCBS-FM listeners.  Now the word "oldie" is forbidden by people in the radio business.

I guess you can't argue with success as WCBS-FM consistently does well in the monthly radio ratings.

Monday, May 18, 2020

Tribute to Ken Osmond by Dave Sundstrom

While growing up in the late 50s and early 60s, I was a big fan of Leave it to Beaver.  Today I heard about the passing of actor Ken Osmond at age 76 who played the iconic Eddie Haskel.  I think Dave Sundstrom who composed the video seen above correctly described the Eddie Haskel character as an "insincere flatterer."

I hope my readers will enjoy this video.

RIP Ken.

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Walking Through Parks During the Pandemic

It is sad that people must be confined to their apartments during this Covid-19 pandemic.  You can go crazy just sitting home.  Now that the weather is getting warmer, people must get out.  Lee and I regularly walk around the following parks in Queens:

  • Cunningham Park
  • Forest Park
  • Crocheron Park
  • Alley Pond Park leading into the Vanderbilt Motor Parkway
I always wear my mask outside the apartment.  I observe that most people do wear masks except for runners and joggers.  People do maintain their distance.

Someday all of this will come to an end.  I understand that people especially those who have lost their jobs are restless and want to normalize.  There is the fear that if we normalize too fast the number of hospitalizations and deaths will rise.

This too shall pass.

Friday, May 15, 2020

Buying More at These Days

I have been a customer of since 1998 and mostly have relied on it to purchase books and music CDs.  During this Coronavirus pandemic, most "brick and mortar" stores have been closed unless they provide essential goods and services.  It seems strange that liquor stores are allowed to open while clothing stores are not.  Over the past few weeks, I have made the following purchases at

  • Underwear
  • Blue Jeans
  • Towels
  • Bed Sheets
  • Vitamins
  • Socks
Hopefully, in the weeks to come some retail outlets will be allowed to open.  I certainly will understand if a limited number of customers are allowed entry at a time for social distancing.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Bob Dylan Concert at Forest Hills for July 8 Is Canceled

In early March a Bob Dylan concert was announced at Forest Hills for July 8th.  Of course, as soon as the tickets went on sale I purchased 3 for the family.  At that time, nobody thought that the situation with the Coronavirus would be so serious and that by early July things would be back to normal.  As time passed, I realized that this concert would be canceled.  The announcement was made yesterday.  The concert promoter will give refunds within 30 days to the credit card used to purchase the tickets.

I was looking forward to this as Dylan would feature some songs from his new album Rough and Rowdy Ways that will be released on June 19.  Hopefully, the Never Ending Tour will resume when this crisis has passed.

On July 8, 2016 we saw Dylan at Forest Hills with Mavis Staples as the opening act.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Watching TV News is So Depressing These Days

I always like to keep informed by watching local and national TV news broadcasts.  However, the situation with COVID-19 is so depressing.  The saddest stories that I have seen:
  • A few weeks ago 60 Minutes reported refrigerated trailers outside of hospitals in NYC with bodies waiting to be buried.
  • There was a story on the local news reporting there were non-refrigerated trailers outside a funeral home in Brooklyn.  The local residents complained about the stench of the decaying bodies.
Governor Andrew Cuomo is very compelling and like his father is an excellent public speaker.  He wants the best for his constituents in this terrible pandemic.  We can not normalize and then see a recurrence of the coronavirus.  Sadly, such a recurrence is predicted by the experts.

Mayor Bill de Blasio is often repetitious in his daily briefings.

I have yet to hear any expression of condolences by President Donald Trump to the families of the victims of COVID-19.


Monday, May 11, 2020

There Will Be Complications in Starting the MLB Season

There was an announcement on the ESPN site stating that the owners has a proposal that would start the MLB season on July 1 with each team playing 82 games against regional opponents.  Likely games will be played in empty stadiums.  There are two major concerns:

  • Safety - obviously there can not be 6 foot distancing within a game.  Only catchers will wear their traditional masks.  Will players, coaches, managers, umpires, trainers,  and other personnel have to be tested before each game for the Coronavirus?
  • Money - Salaries certainly can't be simply prorated by the number of games played.  Revenue will be greatly reduced with no fans in the stands.  Will greedy players prevent the current proposal from happening?
Let's hope for the best.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Long Tall Sally was my Favorite Little Richard Hit

Little Richard passed away yesterday at age 87.  It is not necessary for "everyone and his brother" to announce it on Facebook.  I decided to wait a day and post my favorite hit.  Little Richard certainly influenced many recording artists of the 1950s and 60s.  The Beatles covered Long Tall Sally.

Friday, May 8, 2020

Bob Dylan to Release a New Album called Rough and Rowdy Ways

For the first time in 8 years, Bob Dylan will be releasing an album of new songs called Rough and Rowdy Ways.  Last night a cut called False Prophet (heard above) was released online.  I must assume that Murder Most Foul and I Contain Multitudes will be on that album.

I will obviously pre-order it on so I will get it June 19th, its scheduled release day.  I must assume that the Forest Hills concert on July 8th will be canceled.  He would have previewed this new album there.

At least there is some good news.

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Living in a Ghost Town by the Rolling Stones

Another "timely song" by a classic rock supergroup.  Someday things will get back to normal.

Monday, May 4, 2020

Random Thoughts of the Day

Karen is definitely feeling better with each passing day.  She is eating better and is obviously putting on weight.  She still has a long way to go.  She has an appointment with a urologist tomorrow.  It will be the first time she will be leaving the apartment since she came home from the hospital.  Continued prayers and well wishes are always appreciated.

Sleep is often an escape from the real world.  A week or so ago I had a dream about getting caught in a mass transit delay.  Oy vey.

I have had to cut down my time on the computer to take care of Karen and do errands that she would do.  I had to temporarily give up my activity in SABR (Society for the Advancement of Baseball Research.)  As of now, no announcement has been made about when or how the season will be played.

I try to relax by listening to several terrestrial, SiriusXM, and internet radio stations every day.

Sunday, May 3, 2020

Things Will Be Better by The Byrds

In 1973 the 5 original Byrds reunited and issued an album on Asylum Records called The Byrds.  If I remember correctly I bought it in 1974 at a Two Guys store in East Brunswick, NJ.  One of the cuts titled "Things will be better" certainly applies to today's situation.

Friday, May 1, 2020

This Too Shall Pass by Mike Love

Pat St. John just played this on SiriusXM 60s on 6.  It features John Stamos on drums.  Pat said that proceeds from this song will help to buy food for those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
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