Monday, April 12, 2021

Random Thoughts of the Day

 


I really thought that the Met game should have even started in the rain yesterday.  Both the management of the Mets and the umpires made a poor decision.  MLB must have changed the rules since the game is suspended.  It used to be that any game stopped before the fifth inning would be stricken from the record.

I am getting tired of watching TV commercials for personal injury attorneys.

The race for mayor of New York City is really complicated.  This article from the New York Times is a good summary of the race.  I am undecided at this time.

There is nothing new about the attempt to impeach Andrew Cuomo.  If he survives impeachment,  I don't think he'll be nominated for a fourth term.  As I stated before in this journal, there should be term limits.  Both Mario Cuomo and George Pataki were not elected to a fourth term.

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Bob Dylan, Paul Simon and the Jeff Slate Footnote Controversy with My Comments


 

Jeff Slate is a New York City-based songwriter and journalist. His writing can be found in the Wall Street Journal, Esquire and Rolling Stone, among others.   He wrote the liner notes for the Dylan Boxed Set More Blood More Tracks.  At the World of Bob Dylan Symposium in May 2019 which I attended his interview of Roger McGuinn.  He recently raised controversy by stating that Paul Simon will only be a historical footnote to Bob Dylan.

I will list here two comments that I found about this:

Sean Ross is a longtime journalist covering the radio industry for Billboard, R&R and others. He is Edison Research’s Vice President of Music and Programming.  He wrote a column comparing the radio airplay of Bob Dylan with Paul Simon (with or without Art Garfunkel).  He also states “Paul Simon/Simon & Garfunkel had more and bigger hit singles than Bob Dylan. Simon had 11 songs that made the year-end top 100; Dylan had three. “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door” didn’t make 1973’s year-end chart.”  Please read the entire column for his insights.

Dan Epstein is an award winning journalist, pop culture historian, and avid baseball fan who has written for Rolling Stone, SPIN, Men’s Journal, the Los Angeles Times, USA Today, MOJO, Guitar World, Revolver, LA Weekly and dozens of other publications.  He wrote an excellent essay in The Forward about this controversy.  I leave it up to my readers to evaluate the details.  He states “Bob Dylan doesn’t need to have his already-vast achievements further burnished by a writer envisioning him as the last man standing amid the fragrant ashes of late 20th century music history. What I find most unpalatable here is the framing of popular music as some kind of zero-sum game, in which there are only winners and losers and only a tiny handful of said winners will ever mean anything in the long run.”

Here is my take on the issue:

I have enjoyed Bob Dylan and Paul Simon (with or without Art Garfunkel) immensely since the 1960s.  I have tons of records, tapes, and CDs by them.  Bob Dylan’s strength is as a song writer which is reflected in his winning the Nobel Prize for Literature. I surmise that many Dylan fans are not interested in him as a musician and do not listen to him on commercial radio.  Paul Simon has had many more 45 RPM hits than Dylan, but Dylan’s albums have had a much greater impact whether or not they hit the charts.  I don’t like the way the Dylan is incommunicative with his fans.  He will rarely talk to his audience at concerts.  Paul Simon, on the other hand, spoke to his audience after every number as his did at Madison Square Garden in September 2018.

Dylan and Simon have great respect for each other as they toured together in 1999.  I enjoyed their concert at Jones Beach that summer.

Decades and even centuries from now there will be writings on the popular music of the late 20th and early 21st centuries.  Only wonderful things will be written about Paul Simon and Bob Dylan.  They have both contributed immensely to our popular culture.  There is no need to quantify their achievements.

 

 

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Tuesday at MoMA

 I don't think I have traveled to Manhattan in 2021 so I thought it was the right time to visit the Museum of Modern Art.  I usually go there about twice a year.  There was nothing in particular that I wanted to see, but there was an eclectic collection of artwork from the 1880s to the present.  Below is a sample of what I viewed today,

by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec


There was a model of the Guggenheim Museum at MoMA


There was even one work by Andy Warhol

I think was by Jackson Pollock



I called this one All Along the Watchtower










Sunday, April 4, 2021

Love Those Traveling Wilburys - Together and Apart

 


I remembering finding about the Traveling Wilburys while watching Mary Hart on Entertainment Tonight in 1988.  Bob Dylan, Jeff Lynne, Tom Petty, George Harrison, and Roy Orbison formed this supergroup.  They only had two albums, Volume 1 and Volume 3.  Nobody knows what happened to Volume 2.  Perhaps someday it will surface.  I don't think the group ever toured.  Sadly only Bob Dylan and Jeff Lynne survive.

This is Traveling Wilburys weekend on Dylan Radio.  Pete Freckelton who runs this internet radio station is playing songs by the group and its individual members.  All have been inducted into the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame.



Saturday, April 3, 2021

The Billboard Chart of April 4, 1964

 


Likely the print on the jpg file above is too small.  The Top 5 Hits of 56 years ago today on the Billboard Chart were:

  1. Can't Buy Me Love
  2. Twist and Shout
  3. She Loves You
  4. I Want to Hold Your Hand
  5. Please Please Me
Of course, these 5 hits were by the Beatles.  I fondly remember how their music dominated Top 40 radio at that time.  Back then I listened to WABC, WMCA, and WINS.

Thursday, April 1, 2021

I Experienced Side Effects to the Second Dose of the Moderna Vaccine

 For most of today, I was feverish, but as the day moved on I felt better.  I really felt awful in the morning as my temperature reached 101.4 degrees F.  There is a good article from NBC News describing the various side effects.  The good thing is that the side effects indicate the vaccine is working.  They say one is not fully protected until two weeks after the second injection.  Hopefully, by the summer the old normal will be back.

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

I am Now Fully-Vaccinated - Thank You Walgreens for Your Efficiency


 It took many attempts to get an appointment, but I finally succeeded at the end of February.  I thought I would get an appointment at Citi Field which is a mega site, but I got my two appointments at Walgreens.  My first appointment for the Moderna vaccine was at the Walgreens in downtown Flushing which is a 20-minute walk for me.  I arrived at 2 PM and got my shot at 2:25 as my appointment was for 2:30.  The only problem was that I had a slight fever for a few hours the next day.

My second dose was scheduled for today at 2:30 at Walgreens in College Point which was a 10-minute drive away.  I received my shot at 2:20 PM.  I must admire Walgreens for its efficiency.

I have read that if 70-90% of the population is vaccinated there will be herd immunity.  Hopefully, this will mean a return to normalcy with everything open at full capacity with no masks or social distancing.  Unfortunately, there is a group called Anti-Vaxxers who refuse to be vaccinated.  Hopefully, they are a very tiny minority.

Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Just Like Old Times - Problems on the #7 Train Changed My Plans for the Day

 

Today at about 11 AM there was a track fire at
103rd Street on the #7 Line

I still have a blog https://nynjcommuting.wordpress.com/ where I documented my horrors commuting from Flushing to Newark.  I stopped adding to that blog when I retired at the end of 2017.  

Anyway, today I thought I need some diversion and wanted to walk along the Highline on the west side of Manhattan as I have done several times in the past.  I left home at about 10:30 and walked to the Main Street station of the #7 line.  The train proceeded to the 111th Street station where it stopped.  After 10 minutes the conductor announced there was a track fire at 103rd Street.  He suggested that passengers wanting to go the Manhattan should backtrack and take a westbound train at Willets Point which would bypass the track fire.  I didn't want any further aggravation so I decided to return home.  I could return to the Highline on another day.

I spent some time cleaning out the apartment.  Oh well.

Monday, March 29, 2021

Every Day Should be Unwrapped Like a Precious Gift

 


Harry Harrison must have said "Every Day Should be Unwrapped Like a Precious Gift" thousands of times during his career as a radio personality.  This quote has meant more to me since Karen passed away at age 65,  I am 6 years older than her and always thought she would outlive me, but that didn't happen.  I have a precious gift as I awaken in the morning while Karen does not.  I have thought of some acquaintances who passed away at younger ages:

  • Patrick H - 30
  • Jack D - 46
  • Barry L - 46
  • Veronica C - 50
  • Estelle D - 50
  • Dana K - 53
  • Dan G - 60
  • Mike F - 60
  • Alan B -61
May they all rest in peace.


Saturday, March 27, 2021

I Suggest that my Readers Listen to the Acoustic Storm, a syndicated Radio Show

 


Here is a description of the Acoustic Storm taken from their website:

"The Acoustic Storm is an internationally syndicated radio program, featuring the best variety of acoustic-based rock. With an emphasis on acoustic guitar-driven songs, Audrey Parets presents the full spectrum of acoustic rock, including rarely heard “unplugged” versions of classic tunes in their purest form."

Very often you will hear acoustic versions of classic rock songs.  I actually discovered the show several months by accident as Pirate Radio from Key West, Florida added it after dropping another syndicated show.  It is not heard on any terrestrial stations in NYC, but there is a list of stations that carry it.

I think it would be a good fit for WFUV to air it on weekends.



Thursday, March 25, 2021

There Have Been Enough Mass Shootings - It is Time to Repeal the Second Amendment to the Constitution

 

I usually don't like to comment on controversial issues, but after hearing about the mass shooting in Boulder, Colorado something drastic needs to be done.  There are too many "gun nuts" out there who think that everyone has the right to bear arms.  There are just too many conservative thinkers in our government who would do everything to preserve the Second Amendment to the Constitution that gives everyone the right to bear arms.  This document was written over 200 years ago as so much has changed.  I suggest you read this article by David S. Cohen, Professor of Law at the Thomas R. Kline School of Law of Drexel University.

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Random Thoughts of the Day


Just for the heck of it I looked at the website for Parents without Partners.  I sent an email asking for more information.  Someone responded that the local chapter is not active now.  I must assume that the pandemic has precluded them from face-to-face meetings.  Perhaps I'll try again when things return to normal.

I spend more time these days doing errands.  I have to do things that Karen used to do.

My local bank said that to convert joint accounts to solo accounts I would have to close those accounts and open up new ones.  The bank officer suggested I wait for 6 months.

 

Monday, March 22, 2021

Lord Protect My Child - A Bob Dylan Song That Is Now Meaningful to Me

 


Susan Tedeschi performed Lord Protect My Child at Farm Aid in 2005.  I could not find the Bob Dylan version on YouTube

On the March 21 show of Definitely Dylan Laura Tenschert discussed the sessions for the album Infidels that was released in 1983.  She played Lord Protect My Child that was recorded during those session but did appear on a CD until the Bootleg Series, Vol 1-3: Rare & Unreleased 1961-1991 (1991).  This song has taken on significance for me.

Lord Protect My Child
WRITTEN BY: BOB DYLAN

For his age, he’s wise

He’s got his mother’s eyes

There’s gladness in his heart

He’s young and he’s wild

My only prayer is, if I can’t be there

Lord, protect my child



As his youth now unfolds

He is centuries old

Just to see him at play makes me smile

No matter what happens to me

No matter what my destiny

Lord, protect my child



The whole world is asleep

You can look at it and weep

Few things you find are worthwhile

And though I don’t ask for much

No material things to touch

Lord, protect my child



He’s young and on fire

Full of hope and desire

In a world that’s been raped and defiled

If I fall along the way

And can’t see another day

Lord, protect my child



There’ll be a time I hear tell

When all will be well

When God and man will be reconciled

But until men lose their chains

And righteousness reigns

Lord, protect my child

Copyright © 1983 by Special Rider Music

Saturday, March 20, 2021

AAA Saved the Day

 


Since I first owned a car in 1972 I have always been a member of AAA since a driver never knows when his car can break down.  Thankfully over the years I only had to call them a few times.  My worst experience was in 1978 when my car broke down on the Connecticut Turnpike in Milford.

Today Lee and I wanted to drive over to the new IHOP in Bayside.  When I went to my garage, the car didn't start.  I suspected the battery was dead since my car was over 5 years old.  I bought it used in January 2019, but obviously, the dealer did not install a battery at that point.  I  phoned AAA and described the problem.  Someone came within 20 minutes.  He jump-started the car, but I thought it was better to buy a new battery.  He had a battery with him and installed it while I waited.  This was excellent service.

If I had to have a car problem, it was better to have it at home rather than on the road.  Back in 1978, I had to take Metro-North back to NYC and had to wait a day or so for my car to be repaired.  That was certainly a nightmare.

Friday, March 19, 2021

The Mets and Yankees are allowed 20% Seating Capacity for Early Season Games


 It was announced yesterday that Citi Field and Yankee Stadium can admit 20% of their seating capacity in early season games.  Fans must show proof that they were vaccinated or show a recent negative COVID test.  Thus, approximately 8300 fans will be allowed in Cit Field while 10,000 will be at Yankee Stadium.  I assume that as more people are vaccinated and the infection rate goes down more fans will be allowed.

This is a step in the right direction, but there will be problems.  I assume that opening day will be sold out, but 80% of the ticket buyers will be shut out.  Which season ticket holders will be allowed in?

In any event, let's hope for a 162 game season with no interruptions.

Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Jewish St. Patrick's Day T-Shirt


I  found this t-shirt on Amazon.com.  I certainly wouldn't buy it.  I guess St. Patrick's Day celebrates Irish culture and like Christmas has little religious significance in American culture.  On March 17 everyone is Irish.  



 

Monday, March 15, 2021

Missing You by Diana Ross - Dedicated to Karen

 


Missing You was a hit for Diana Ross in 1985.  I miss Karen every minute of every day.

Saturday, March 13, 2021

I Have Not Bought Baseball Tickets for the 2021 Season

 


In previous years I bought tickets for the Mets and Yankees in February or early March.  It gave me something to look forward to as winter was ending and spring beginning.  We always preferred day games.  As it stands right now ballparks in New York will be allowed only 10% capacity.  Likely this will increase by opening day, but at what point will stadiums be allowed to fill every seat?  Let's say that Citi Field will be allowed 25% of capacity.  If opening day is sold out, how will the team decide who gets the limited tickets?

There was a cumbersome procedure last season to get refunds from the Mets and Yankees.  I don't want to experience that again, so I will wait and only buy tickets when I am assured that I'll get in.

Thursday, March 11, 2021

How Should Public Libraries Increase Their Services While COVID is Still a Problem?


There was a recent article in the Wall Street Journal stating that the Brooklyn Public Library will bring reading rooms outdoors.  Does this do patrons much good as they can always go to a park and read there as NYC Parks do have access to Wifi?  Patrons will still not be allowed to browse the stacks. The three public library systems in NYC have a grab-and-go system where patrons can go online and order items that will be delivered to the patron's home branch.  This procedure does work but is somewhat cumbersome as items must be delivered.  A patron can search the library's catalog and limit it to their home branch.  I suggest that if a patron finds an item in their home branch, they can present the title and call number to a page who will retrieve the item.

The Research Libraries of NYPL are still closed to the public.  There are millions of print resources that are not available online.  My suggestion is to allow researchers to make appointments as the documents will be retrieved in advance while the patron can come into the library to read it.  A limited number of people can use this service to allow for social distancing.

I applaud the efforts of public libraries in providing more online resources during the pandemic.
 

Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Blood in My Eyes by Bob Dylan

 


This is an excellent video of Bob Dylan as he actually singing the song.  You can even see him give autographs as he walks through the streets of London.   Blood in My Eyes appeared on the album World Gone released in 1993.  Laura Tenschert discussed the song and the video on the episode of Definitely Dylan on February 28.

Sunday, March 7, 2021

I Returned to the College Point Multiplex Today


I must have seen hundreds of movies at the College Point Multiplex since it opened in 1999.  I have regularly noted in this journal that mass appeal films aimed at a younger audience are usually shown here, but I like going there since it is within walking distance of home.

Of course, all movie theaters in NYC have been closed since last March but were allowed to reopen with 25% capacity.  Of course, I had to go there today.  There wasn't a good selection of films, so I chose Chaos Walking.  It is a sci-fi fantasy movie taking place in the year 2257.  To be brief it takes place in a new planet with no women. Daisy Ridley plays the only woman to arrive on this planet.

I don't recommend it for senior citizens, but it was good to go to a movie theater for the first time in a year.

Saturday, March 6, 2021

Good Times, Bad Times by The Rolling Stones - Thinking About the Past

 


All of a sudden this song by the Rolling Stones that appeared on the album 12 X 5 came to me.  There are good times and bad times all everyone's lives.  That certainly applies to marriage.  Karen and I had some bad times in our 37 years of marriage, but we persevered.  In this era where about half of all marriages end in divorce, staying married till death did us part is a major accomplishment.

Thursday, March 4, 2021

There Should Be Term for All Federal and State Offices

 


I usually don't comment on political issues, but here I go.  Elected officials often act in an arrogant manner once they have been in office for a long time.  Andrew Cuomo is a perfect example of an elected official being a bully after 10+ years in office.  Here are my suggestions:

  • All New York State executives and legislators are limited to two 4-year terms.
  • U.S. Representatives be limited to two 4-year terms with their elections held when there is no presidential election.
  • U.S, Senators be limited to two 6-year terms
  • Supreme Court judges are limited to one 10-year term.
It is possible that changes will happen at the state level.  However, it will take an amendment to the U.S. Consitution for anything to change at the federal level.  I doubt if 75% of the states would approve this.

Tuesday, March 2, 2021

I Got The First COVID Vaccine Today with Excellent Service for the Walgreens in Downtown Flushing


 Persistence does pay off as I was able to get an appointment for the COVID Vaccine at the local Walgreens.  My biggest surprise was how efficient the service was at Walgreens in Flushing. My appointment was at 2:30 and I got the shot at 2:25.  It was over in a few seconds.  My appointment for dose 2 is on March 31 at Walgreens in College Point.  I am not familiar with that immediate area so I will have to take a drive over there to see if there is a parking problem there.  If so, I can take the Q20 bus there.  

I originally thought I would get my vaccination at Citi Field, but I could not get through.  Walgreens is actually more convenient.  I heard on the TV news that people had to wait for hours at Citi Field for their shot.  Hopefully, fans will be allowed in the stadium early in the 2021 season.  I certainly missed going to games last season.

Monday, March 1, 2021

Who's Zoomin' Who by Aretha Franklin - A 1985 Hit That Should be Heard on the Radio Today

 


Zoom in 1985 is not what Zoom is in 2021.  I think many people today have attended many Zoom meetings over the past year.  I have not heard this song by Aretha Franklin on the radio at all.  It peaked at #7 on the Billboard charts.  Does anybody know if the classic hits stations are playing this?

Saturday, February 27, 2021

Bob Dylan 1970 was Released Yesterday

This 3-CD set obviously does not include new recordings but does include previously unreleased outtakes from the sessions that produced Self Portrait and New Morning, as well as the complete May 1, 1970, studio recordings with his future bandmate Harrison, which capture the pair performing together on nine tracks.  In 1988 Dylan and Harrison teamed up again as part of the Traveling Wilburys.

I was amused by Dylan's cover of Yesterday.  A few years ago there was a CD called The Art of McCartney where many artists covered his songs.  It included Dylan singing The Things We Said Today.  His voice was rough in that recording but is quite mellow in this 1970 cover of Yesterday.



 

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Another Beatle Book is Coming

 


A few weeks ago I stated that there are too many Bob Dylan books out there.  Likewise, there must be hundreds of books written about the Beatles collectively and about the four individual members.  Paul McCartney just announced in November he will publish a memoir titled "The Lyrics: 1956 to the Present."  This will be a two-volume 960-page opus that will examine 150 songs that McCartney has written.  Thus, it is not an autobiography.

Since this 2-volume set is coming from the songwriter, it should provide new insights.  Likely, it will read like a reference book.



Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Thank You Jack Sullivan For Dedicating a Song to Karen on WESU-FM Radio

 

WESU is a college radio station affiliated with Wesleyan University in Middleton, Connecticut.  It can also be heard anywhere at http://www.wesufm.org/ Its programming is very eclectic including shows from the BCC and NPR,  Jack Sullivan has an oldies show that is heard Tuesday evenings from 8:00 - 9:30 PM.  A few years ago he promoted his show on Facebook, so I thought I'd listen.  Much of his show is requests from listeners.  Over the past few years, he did play several of my requests.

On tonight's show he made some kind comments about Karen and played I Couldn't Live Without Your Love by Petula Clark who is one of Karen's favorite artists. We saw Petula at BB Kings in December 2017 .  Please listen to the wonderful dedication that Jack made for Karen.



Suggestion - Once a Year Throw Out Unwanted Items from Closets and Drawers in Your Apartment

 


There is a TV commercial for a company where if you have junk in your house, just point to it and it will disappear.  Believe me, it is not that easy.  I have started to go through my apartment and found out that my beloved late wife Karen was a hoarder.  She did not throw anything out. For example, I found invitations to weddings and bar mitzvahs from over 30 years ago.  I must be very careful since there may be some important documents among the junk.  Thus, this is a very slow process.

Rome wasn't built in a day and I don't have a time limit, but this is a very unpleasant task.  I suggest everyone look through belongings and discard what is not needed about once a year.  I would make life a lot easier years later.

Sunday, February 21, 2021

Conversation with Patti Harrison, Daughter of the Late Radio Great Harry Harrison

 


I worked with Jeff Scheckner and Bill Dillane to plan this event.  I couldn't attend since it was too soon after Karen's passing.  I hope you will enjoy the recording.

Saturday, February 20, 2021

High Praise for the Officers of the 109th Precinct of NYPD

 


Here is an email that I sent to the 109th Precinct which covers Flushing and most of northeastern Queens.

I highly praise the officers who responded at about 2:30 AM on Tuesday, February 16 after I called 911 to report that my wife, Karen Slutsky, was unresponsive.  They were especially kind and compassionate to me after medics confirmed that she passed away.  They explained all the procedures that needed to be followed at that time.  The officers stayed with me until the funeral home came to pick up the body.  I neglected to get their names.

They are certainly New York’s finest.

Thank you very much for your service.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Here is the response from the Captain:

I am the Commanding Officer of the 109 Precinct. I truly appreciate you taking the time during such a difficult time in your life to acknowledge the compassionate response of our officers. Thank You. I’m incredibly proud to receive this news and we will identify the Officers and have this acknowledgment placed in their permanent personnel file. On a personal note, please accept my condolences on your loss. I will include you and your family in my prayers. Please let me know if there is anything you need.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Sadly, there have been many high-profile situations when the police have acted inappropriately.  These situations often linger in the media for months if not years. 99.999% of the time police officers act honorably,  However, when police go beyond the call of duty, the media rarely reports it.

This is the first time I have ever had to use the services of the NYPD.  I am very satisfied with their performance.  I hope the police will not be defunded as it may prevent them from doing their job properly.

Thank You for Being My Friend at this Very Difficult Time

 Lee and I greatly appreciate the kind messages that we received on Facebook after I announced Karen’s passing. I must have received about 200 messages from Facebook friends.  Friends from my grade school days, high school, college, grad school, my career, my hobbies, even friends I've never met in the flesh, all lent strength when I needed it most. I read every message and cherish their sentiments. My oldies radio friends were especially kind to me. I would like to call out some people who were especially kind to us:

Scott, Justin, and Faith Shapiro who are our nephews and niece.

Joyce Feuer – my sister

Alan Kanis -Karen’s cousin

Jonathan Binstock who phone me from Maryland

David McMillan – who phoned me from Oklahoma

Cara Sieden – who phoned me from Queens

My Bob Dylan friends, Millie Lyttle, Walter Raubicheck, Lawrence Kaplan, Danny Fingeroth, Caitlin Hawke, and Marcus Marsden.  There was a Zoom meeting that night that they canceled saying that it wouldn’t be the same without me.  Those guys know more about Dylan than me.

Yesterday, I received a phone call from Lou Saffrin whom I had not seen in 50 years.  I worked with him as stock boys for Alexanders when were students.  He went out of his way to look up my phone number.

Please be assured that even if I didn’t mention you in this journal entry, I appreciate your kindness and compassion.

I am going to conclude this journal entry with You’ve Got a Friend by Carole King who was one of Karen’s favorite singer/songwriters.


Friday, February 19, 2021

Bruce and Karen (October 16, 1983 - February 16, 2021) Remembering the Good Times - Her Memory is a Blessing

 


In August 1980, Arlene, a colleague of mine at a pharmaceutical company, asked if I’d like to meet her sister-in-law who lived nearby me in Queens.  I felt I had nothing to lose and phoned Karen and made a date.  We went to an ice dancing show at the Nassau Coliseum.  After the date, we went back to her apartment and talked.  I noted a knick-knack with the zodiac sign of Taurus.  She said her birthday was April 22 while mine was April 21, but six years apart.  I never heard the end of that in all the years that I knew her.  I phoned her for a second date which I think was a movie.  We found out that we liked oldies music, especially the Beatles.  I didn’t bring up Bob Dylan at that time.  After that, she invited me to her house to listen to her Beatles records.  We were also into oldies radio and listened to WYNY and WCBS-FM.  She was also a big fan of the Mets.

The relationship grew, but I was always afraid that marriage will kill all the fun.  In October 1982 we became engaged.  It must have been the worst proposal as I told her a few days before that I got the ring and that I will propose on Saturday night.

We were married on October 16, 1983, at the Old Westbury Hebrew Congregation.  For our first year we lived on 99th Street in Rego Park.  A year later her father remarried and moved to the Bronx and later to Florida.  We then moved into the co-op she co-owned with her father in the Mitchell_Linden section of Flushing.  We have lived there ever since.

After 4 years of marriage, we thought it was time to start a family.  Lee was born in March 1988.  Having a child is a wonderful thing, but also creates stress.  As Lee got older we realized he was developmentally disabled and was in special education programs.  We always did the best for him.  He developed a taste for oldies music and Bob Dylan.  In April 1997 we took Lee to his first Bob Dylan concert at William Patterson University in Wayne, NJ.  He has gone to every Dylan concert since that time.

The highlights of our marriage were our baseball/music vacations.  In 2006, 2007, and 2010 we went on Jay Buckley baseball tours.  We flew to Chicago and took a bus to visit several ballparks in the Midwest.  At a game in Milwaukee Karen got a foul ball that landed in her seat.

Here are some of the vacations we took:

1998, 2008 – Rock n Roll Hall of Fame and Cleveland Indians

2003 – Memphis to visit Graceland.  We also took in a Memphis Redbirds Game

2005 – San Francisco to see the Giants and Oakland A’s

2011 – Southern California to see L.A. Dodgers, Angels, and several museums

2012 – Baltimore to see the Orioles at Camden Yards

2013 – Atlanta to see the Braves and several museums

2004, 2014 – Nashville to visit the Grand Ole Opry, Johnny Cash Museum and a Nashville Sounds Game

2016 – Denver to see the Colorado Rockies

2017 – Houston to see the Astros at Minute Maid Park

2018 – Phoenix to see the Arizona Diamondbacks and several museums.

2019 – Seattle to see the Mariners, Space Needle and other attraction

Our favorite activity at home which is watching Quiz Shows on TV.  Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune are our favorites, but we also watch GSN and the Buzzer Network. 

I’ll conclude be saying that the Beatles’ music was featured at our wedding.  Karen picked the wedding song that was Endless Love by Diana Ross and Lionel Richie. 


Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Bruce's Journal will Return in a Few Days

 Readers not on Facebook may not know that my wife Karen passed away.  I will return in a few days with a long entry about Karen.

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Can't Take My Eyes Off You Sung by Mary Wilson in 1969

 


A few days ago Mary Wilson suddenly passed away at age 76.  She did have a solo career after the Supremes disbanded.  I found this performance of hers from the Hollywood Palace in October 1969.  RIP Mary.

Saturday, February 13, 2021

Very Sad - Trump was Acquitted


 An impeachment vote should be based on facts, not politics.  It is obvious that former President Trump was guilty of inciting an insurrection.  The constitution requires that a 2/3 majority of senators is required for conviction.  The next step would have been a vote to disqualify Trump from running for any federal office.  Now Trump can run for President in 2024.  I'd like to thank the following 7 Republican Senators who voted with their conscience for conviction:

  • Burr
  • Cassidy
  • Collins
  • Murkowski
  • Romney
  • Sasse
  • Toomey
Mitch McConnell vote for acquittal.

I usually don't comment on politics.

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Random thoughts of the Day


 I have tried unsuccessfully several times to try to get an appointment for the Coronavirus vaccine at Citi Field.  I heard on the TV news that starting next week it will be open 24/7 which should obviously create more availability.  Rome wasn't built in a day.

Governor Cuomo announced yesterday that sports venues can allow 10% of capacity into games.  Thus, approximately 2,000 could get into Madison Square Garden and Barclay Center.  Citi Field could accommodate 4,000 fans while 5,000 could get into Yankee Stadium.  My question is who gets the limited tickets?  My guess that only full season ticket holders will get in.  Perhaps in the spring, the percentage will go up.

Likewise, concert venues will be able to let in 10% of capacity.  Can a concert be profitable if such a small number of fans can get in?




Tuesday, February 9, 2021

How Many Bob Dylan Books are Enough?

 


As a subscriber to Isis, a fanzine, I receive weekly updates announcing new books, recordings, and memorabilia.  Last night I looked at my bookshelf and observed that I had numerous Bob Dylan books.  I have several other e-books about him on my Amazon Kindle.  The book listed above was announced today and will be released in April.  Clinton Heylin is a well-respected Dylan scholar who has published extensively.  Below is a description of this new book.

With fresh and revealing information A Restless, Hungry Feeling tells the story of Dylan’s meteoric rise to fame: his arrival in early 1961 in New York, where he is embraced by the folk scene; his elevation to a spokesman of a generation whose protest songs provide the soundtrack for the burgeoning Civil Rights movement; his alleged betrayal when he ‘goes electric’ at Newport in 1965; his subsequent controversial world tour with a rock ‘n’ roll band; and the recording of his three undisputed electric masterpieces: Bringing it All Back Home, Highway 61 Revisited and Blonde on Blonde. At the peak of his fame in July 1966 he reportedly crashes his motorbike in Woodstock, upstate New York, and disappears from public view. When he re-emerges, he looks different, his voice sounds different, his songs are different. That other story will be told in Volume 2, to be published in autumn 2022. Hardback. 720 Pages.

Will there be any new revelations in this book that covers his life until 1966?  Volume 2 covering 1967 to the present will be published in Fall 2022.

How many Bob Dylan books are enough?


Sunday, February 7, 2021

Jeopardy Guest Hosts after Ken Jennings


I believe that Ken Jennings's run as Guest Host of Jeopardy will end on February 19th giving him a 6-week audition.  I think he has done a credible job in that role.  I just don't like his repeating many of Alex Trebek's sayings when he spoke to the contestants.

The other guest hosts (in no particular) will be:
  • Katie Couric - former Today Show host
  • Savannah Guthrie - current Today Show host
  • Mike Richards - Jeopardy Producer
  • Aaron Rodgers - football player
  • Mayim Bialik - Actress
  • Dr. Sanjay Gupta -CNN Medical Correspondent
  • Dr. Mehmet Oz
  • Anderson Cooper - CNN and 60 Minutes Correspondent
Will one of these Guest Hosts become the permanent host?

I am disappointed that Brooke Burns and Meredith Viera are on this list since both have experience as game show hosts.

 

Saturday, February 6, 2021

Pinball Wizard by the Who - Random Oldie of the Day

 


I remember playing pinball back in the 1960s and 1970s.  There were pinball arcades all over back then.  Those games became technologically obsolete in later years.

Thursday, February 4, 2021

Dignity by Bob Dylan

 


On one of the Definitely Dylan radio shows Laura Tenschert compares several recorded versions of Dignity by Bob Dylan.  Above is the version from Tell Tale Signs, part of the Bootleg Series.  I guess I am on a roll since there are two Dylan posts in a row in my journal.

Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Dylan Review: An Open Access Journal

 


Of course, a journal is a periodical publication of scholarly articles.  For my readers who are not librarians, open access means that anyone can access the articles without having to pay.  The journal is supported financially by the authors who must pay after their article was accepted after the peer-review process.  Dylan Review also requests donations from readers.

Below is the table of contents from the most recent issue:

REVIEWS

Quentin Miller, Bob Dylan: Outlaw Blues…………………………………..…………....2

Michael Hacker, “Whiskey” (Theme Time Radio Hour episode 101) ….…………12

Walter Raubicheck, Surviving in a Ruthless World: Bob Dylan’s Voyage

to Infidels ……………………………………………………………...…….………...…..19

Tommy Shea, Songs from a Voice: Being the Recollections, Stanzas, and

 Observations of Abe Runyan, Song Writer and Performer……………….………26

Matthew Lipson, A Wanderer by Trade: Gender in the Songs of Bob Dylan…..29

THE DYLANISTA……………………………………………………….……………………….34

POEMS

Thomas G. Palaima, “Visions of Desolation: Cleveland 1965 Austin 2012”...…...40

ARTICLES

John Radosta, “The Simple Art of Music: Bob Dylan and Noir”............................44

SONG CORNER

Bob Keyes, “All the Songs: Dylan’s Songbook Sale”.………………………......…...77

INTERVIEWS

Larry Campbell and Teresa Williams…………………………………………..……….82

LETTERS………………………………………………………………………………………….96

CONTRIBUTORS………………………………………………………………………….…….97

BOOKS RECEIVED



Monday, February 1, 2021

Will Today's Snowfall be a Record Breaker in New York City


Biggest Snowfalls in NYC History
  1.  27.5 inches January 22-24, 2016
  2.  26.9 inches February 11-12, 2006
  3.  26.4 inches December 26-27, 1947
  4.  21.0 inches March 12-14, 1888 
  5.  20.9 inchesFebruary 25-26, 2010 
  6.  20.2 inches January 7-8, 1996 
  7.  20.0 inches December 26-27, 2010
  8.  19.8 inches February 16-17, 2003
  9.  19.0 inchesJanuary 26-27, 2011
  10.  18.1 inches January 22-24, 1935 March 7-8, 1941
The forecast calls for up to 18 inches before the storm ends sometime tomorrow?  Will it be a record-breaker.  I don't have to worry about getting into work but after a while cabin fever sets it.

Saturday, January 30, 2021

SABR Day Was Virtual This Year - Zoom Saved The Day

 


The local chapters of SABR (Society for American Baseball Research) hold meetings exactly 8 days before Superbowl Sunday.  The Casey Stengel Chapter in New York City held meetings at the New York Public Library and at Scandinavian House in Manhattan.  I documented several meetings in this journal:

There was no local meeting this year since the COVID situation does not allow for large meetings.  Those described above generally drew from 80-100 people.

The virtual meeting held today commemorated the 50th anniversary of SABR.  It included congratulatory messages from players including Johnny Bench, Steve Garvey, Reggie Jackson, and Dave Winfield.

The first part of the program was an interview of National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum President Tim Mead.  He discussed how his career developed from an intern with the Los Angeles Angels to his current position.

Marty Appel, author and longtime New York Yankees public relations director interviewed broadcasting legend, Bob Costas.  The highlight of the event for me was hearing Bob describe his professional relationships with the 10 Hall of Famers who passed away over the past 9 months.

I hope that SABR recorded the event so others may view it.

Thursday, January 28, 2021

Owners of IPhones and iPads should update to IOS 14.4 ASAP

 


I was watching the Today Show this morning when a short story advised owners of iPhones and iPads to upgrade to IOS 14.4.  It seems that there are so many updates to Apple products, but this one seems to be very important.  Apple stated that an anonymous researcher found that attackers may be able to remotely hack certain iPhones, iPads, and iPods.

This website from CBS News describes the situation in detail.

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

My Next Visit to Citi Field will be for a COVID Vaccination

A week or so ago New York City announced that Citi Field will be a mega site for the distribution of the COVID vaccine allowing for between 5,000 and 7,000 vaccinations each day.  Since I am over 65 years old I am now eligible.  However, the city exhausted its supply of the vaccine and suspended the program.

We don't know what will happen with the forthcoming baseball season.  Will there be a 162 season?  Will fans be allowed in the ballparks?  I think it is not likely at the beginning of the season.  It is possible that only a percentage of the seats will be allowed to be filled.  For that reason, I have not purchased any tickets for the 2021 season.



 

Monday, January 25, 2021

Thanks to Google Chrome and Spectrum Internet I won a Cousin Brucie - T-Shirt


I was never much of a radio contest "nut" over the years.  Usually, the DJ announces the first phone caller wins the prize.  Thousands of people dial the number milliseconds after the announcement is made, and one lucky person wins the prize.  On Saturday night January 16 Cousin Brucie gave a website and stated the first 25 people who submit their contact information will win the shirt seen above.  When I got to that site I typed in my first name and Google Chrome automatically put the rest of my contact information in the proper boxes.  That certainly saved several seconds by not requiring me to type in the information.  My Spectrum Internet then transmitted the information quickly.  The next day I received an email stating that I won the shirt.

I certainly hope that the next time WABC runs that contest Mary Shaw and Leslie Peskoff Fisch will win since they are Cousin Brucie's biggest fans.

 

Saturday, January 23, 2021

I Was Born in Brooklyn in 1949 - Here is a Narrated Tour of the Borough in that Year

 


Mary Shaw who also was born in Brooklyn posted this video on Facebook.  I was born in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn in 1949, but my family moved to Queens two years later.  This film offers a narrated tour of the borough in that year.  

Friday, January 22, 2021

Will Zoom Meetings Prevail When "Normalcy" Returns?

 


Since people can not gather for face-to-face meetings during this pandemic Zoom meetings have become very popular for online classes and discussions among hobbyists.  There are more meetings online than there ever was face-to-face before the pandemic.  For example, the New York Giants Preservation Society (baseball) held about 3 meetings a year at a sports bar.  Over the past few months, this group has run meetings almost every week.  For a while, I attended these online meetings, but as long as I don't want to ask a question, I view the archived version at my convenience.  Since the meetings are online, people from all over the country can attend.

Likewise, a Bob Dylan fan group that I organized in Fall 2019 used to hold meetings at NYU in Greenwich Village.  We now hold monthly meetings online.

Once this miserable pandemic ends, will people prefer online meetings?  It remains to be seen..

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Good Luck to the Biden Harris Administration

 


Today was the big day as Joe Biden became President and Kamala Harris became the first woman to become Vice-President.  There are many problems in today's society that will not disappear as there is a new team in Washington.  Mr. Biden will sign 17 executive orders, memorandums, and proclamations from the Oval Office on his first day in office.  This will help to undo the legacy of his predecessor who in my opinion never had the qualities to be president in the first place.  It is hard to believe that 74 million people voted for him.

I wish the best of luck to the new administration in all their endeavors.  Joe Biden will be president for all Americans, not just those who voted for him.  If they succeed, the American people will benefit.

On another topic, I hope that Donald Trump will be prosecuted to the fullest extent to the law on all charges.  Nobody is above the law.

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Why Do People Do Such Stupid Things?

 


ESPN Reports that recently hired New York Mets general manager Jared Porter sent explicit, unsolicited photos to a female reporter in 2016.  Steven Cohen, the new owner of the Mets, stated in a Tweet: "We have terminated Jared Porter this morning. In my initial press conference, I spoke about the importance of integrity and I meant it. There should be zero tolerance for this type of behavior.

I think Jared Porter has committed career suicide.  This reminds me of the situation with former Congressman Anthony Weiner who committed a similar act using Twitter a few years ago.  His wife divorced him and lost his career in public service.

Sunday, January 17, 2021

I Just Love "The Wall of Sound" but its Producer was a Murderer

 

The Crystals had many hits featuring the Wall of Sound

The Wall of Sound is a music production formula developed by American record producer XXXXX at Gold Star Studios, in the 1960s, with assistance from engineer Larry Levine and the conglomerate of session musicians later known as "the Wrecking Crew".  That unmentioned producer died today at age 81 in prison while he was serving a life sentence for murder.  I don't think there should be a tribute to a murderer.

Here is a list of some of the hits of the 60s featuring the Wall of Sound.

  • He's a Rebel The Crystals.
  • Da Doo Ron Ron (When He Walked Me Home) The Crystals.
  • Be My Baby The Ronettes.
  • Then He Kissed Me The Crystals.
  • (Today I Met) The Boy I'm Gonna Marry Darlene Love.
  • Baby, I Love YouThe Ronettes.
  • He's Sure the Boy I LoveThe Crystals.
  • Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah Bobby Soxx & The Blue Jeans.
  • River Deep Mountain High -Ike and Tina Turner
  • You've Lost that Loving Feeling by The Righteous Brothers
  • Good Vibrations by the Beach Boy


It's Getting Better by Cass Elliot - Oldie of the Day

 

 

Last night I watched a YouTube video of a biography of Cass Elliot.  This was part of a series that was seen on the A&E Cable Network.  I certainly hope that things will get better for everyone healthwise and otherwise.

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Extraordinary Security for the Presidential Inauguration

The inauguration of the president should be a joyous occasion as the Americans celebrate the peaceful transition from one administration to the next.  The two inaugurations that I recall are:

  • January 1961 when John F. Kennedy took office.  It was a snow day so I was able to stay home to watch it.
  • January 2009 when Barack Obama became the first African-American president.  I was working at NJIT where a viewing area was set up in the campus center.  
A report from WTOP news describes the extraordinary security provided for the Biden inauguration this coming Wednesday.  Thousands of National Guard troops are already on patrol on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol, which was the site of a deadly siege by supporters of President Donald Trump last week, and elsewhere around D.C.

This is quite sad as President Trump has brainwashed his followers into thinking that the election was rigged and that he should remain as president.  I hope that an impeachment trial be done after January 20th so that Trump can be forbidden from running for office and that perks given to former presidents are denied to him.

Prayers for a pieceful day.



 

 
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