Uncle Bardie’s Weekly Music Pick: Room at the Table

It’s Thursday again. You know what that means. Uncle Bardie’s Weekly Music Pick. Uncle Bardiie gives a double thumbs up to this week’s selection. “Room at the Table” by Carrie Newcomer:

I know it’s Christmas, and some of you are saying, “Where’s your Christmas song”. Well, this one is my Christmas song. It gets to the spirit of what Christmas is. On top of the lyric of the song, the music makes you want to get up and dance. And what a great video. I just love them giraffes and those dancers. So Merry Christmas, y’all.

Politics in America 38: Al Fresco alfrescoes the Place  

Al Fresco, the Presidential King Maker, was frantic. He was old friends with the CIA Director. The Director had told Al all that had happened in the Oval Office in Chapter 37. Stever the Cleaver was a Canadian. If he tried to attempt to assassinate Bessie Mae Hogg, he might get caught. The President would definitely be going after the Canadians.

And Al Fresco knew his history. During the War of 1812, the United States had invaded Canada and got whopped. It was about to happen again. For Al knew the Canadians were not about to be beat. Those guys really knew how to play hockey. The United States definitely did not want to take on guys like that.

However there was a problem. Stever the Cleaver was not contactible. When he was about to do a job, there was no contacting him for anything. His smartphone was off. His cell phone was off. His smart watch was off. His smoke signal detector was off. Nobody was about to contact the Cleaver.

To say that it was a dark and stormy night when Big Al Fresco headed across the back lawn of the White House is a bit like saying Canadians love hockey. Of course, they love hockey, and of course, it was a dark and stormy night. What other weather would you expect when Big Al was trying to track Stever the Cleaver down? And do it sneaky-like? If it had been a warm and sunny day, the Secret Service would have stopped him. In fact, it was so dark and stormy the weather made the words “dark and stormy” a cliché. And I’ve seen some clichés in my time. This really was a cliché.

Big Al slipped through the Gate and sneaked across the White House lawn toward Bessie Mae Hogg’s Pig Pen. To say that he was as wet as all-get-out was not stretching it none too much. He was as wet as all-get-out. And getting wetter all the time. It was so dark and stormy there was not a star in the sky and it looked like the moon had lost his way.

Big Al slipped and fell in a ditch the White House Lawn Guys were digging. For what reason, they were digging a ditch in just that place was anybody’s guess. They were government employees and we all know how far they will stretch themselves not to work.

“But digging a ditch is work,” you say. Of course, it’s work. That’s how far government workers will go to get out of work.

Big Al picked himself up out of that ditch. If he had been drenched before, he was drenched now with a cake of mud all over him. He was beginning to look like some monster that you might encounter on Halloween. He was regretting every political thing he had ever done. He was thinking it was time to look for a new line of work.

Not too far ahead of him, he saw his goal. Stever the Cleaver. The Cleaver was looking just as bad as Big Al, only worse. He had been out in the dark and stormy night a half hour longer than Big Al, so he was looking a half hour worse.

Big Al saw that The Cleaver had pulled his big gun with the big silencer out of its big holster. He was headed straight for the P F Sneaze’s Blue Ribbon pig. Big Al ran and he ran fast and tackled The Cleaver. The Cleaver, of course, was surprised. And when you surprise up on an assassin with a gun with a silencer out and ready to shoot his target, you have done a mighty lot of surprising. That’s how surprised The Cleaver was.

Big Al and Stever wrestled for the gun. If you are looking for an example of how much they wrestled, think Jacob and the Angel. It was one whopper of a wrestling match. First Big Al had the upper hand, then The Cleaver, then Big Al, then The Cleaver.

It got to the point where everything came to a draw. That was when it happened. The gun with the silencer went off.

Next Week The Beat Goes On  

Uncle Bardie’s Movie of the Week: Sparky’s Gang

Once a week on Monday, Uncle Bardie shares a movie with his Readers he gives a big two thumbs up. It will simply be a short excerpt or a trailer. Uncle Bardie might even throw in a reflection on the movie. If so, it will make an appearance below the video. So pop some popcorn and give yourself a treat. This week’s pick is “The Peanuts Movie” (2015).

When I was a kid, the Sunday funnies were a big deal. “Dick Tracy” and Al Capp’s “Lil Abner”, “Nancy” and “Beetle Bailey”, “Alley Oop” and “Pogo”. “We have met the enemy and he is us.” That used to crack me up. Because of the Sunday funnies, everybody knew what a Dagwood Sandwich was. Tried to open our mouths and get a bite in all at once. Most of us didn’t have that big a mouth.

Al Capp’s “Lil Abner” became a musical. “Alley Oop” became a hit song by the Hollywood Argyles. And so did another comic strip. “Charley Brown” by the Coasters.  “Who’s a clown, that Charley Brown.” Of course, I am talking about “Peanuts”, the comic strip that seemed like it would live forever. It almost did. It continued for fifty years.

In the sixties, there started appearing the television specials, beginning with “A Charley Brown Christmas”. That featured a wonderful score by  jazz pianist Vince Guraldi. The Peanuts Gang found their way into two musicals, “You’re a Good Man, Charley Brown” and “Snoopy the Musical”. There was even a “Snoopy on Ice” Ice Capades show.

Now there is a movie bringing back all the Peanuts Gang. This one I didn’t think I would enjoy as much as I did. I gotta tell you that I liked it so much I am labelling it a two-thumber. All the kids in the Peanuts Gang are back. Lucy is doing her devilish things. Schroeder still plays Beethoven. Linus and his blankie. Peppermint Patty is still calling Charley Brown “Chuck”. Marcie still thinks Peppermint Patty is the smartest girl in the world. Snoopy is still doing battle with the Red Baron.

And, of course, the Peanuts Everyman, Charlie Brown, has a starring role. He instantly falls for the Red-haired Girl when she moves into the neighborhood. So much so he takes on a book report for her, even though it means he has to read “War and Peace”.

There is no sex or violence or car chases or trucks blown up. Just the Peanuts Gang doing what they always did, being the kids they always were. And no adults were harmed in the making of this movie. But it is still a two-thumber. How about that.

So do yourself a favor. See this one. It’s a hoot and a half. Besides it’s Christmas. What would Christmas be without Charlie Brown?

Important things 

“Sir,” the woman leaned over the back of the bench where she sat. “Sir.”

The man on the bench behind her made an effort to ignore her.

“Sir,” she demanded.

Impatiently he looked up from his newspaper and turned toward her.

“Is the war actually over?” she asked.

“Yes, it is.”

“Thank God. Now my brother can come home.”

“Yes, we are all glad it is over. Now we can get back to more important things.”

He went back to his paper while she wondered what could be more important than the war. Her daughter tugged at her skirt.

“Yes, Marie?” she said, then lifted the child into her lap.

Uncle Bardie’s Weekly Music Pick: Sol Invictus

It’s Thursday again. You know what that means. Uncle Bardie’s Weekly Music Pick. UncleBardiie gives a double thumbs up to this week’s selection: “Sol Invictus” by Thea Gilmore.