Beatbox

“Beatbox.” I’d never heard the term before. Until. . . .

Let me back up. When I go to the local fitness center, I usually hop on the recumbent bike for a half hour or 45 minutes. When I do this, I listen to TED Talks (see posts of 2/5/17 and 12/29/16), language lessons or famous speeches and sermons. So last Friday, I perched on the bike, noodled my Iphone onto the TED channel and began scanning the offerings I’d not seen. One of the “most popular” was “The Orchestra in my Mouth” by an Aussie from Brisbane named Tom Thum. 34 million views. Soooo. . . .

I had no idea what to expect. But it soon became apparent. Tom Thum is a “beatboxer.” He uses his voice to replicate all manner of sound, beat, instrument, and amplitude. Over the years, I’ve used my voice to make various sounds (I’m sure most guys have too) but Mr. Thum’s offering was very different. Verrrry . . . .

I am sure you will enjoy spending 11 minutes to watch this video. When you’re through, I want you to practice Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean.” It may take a lot of practice. See https://www.ted.com/talks/tom_thum_the_orchestra_in_my_mouth#t-651460 To make a living out of making different noises with your mouth? My kinda job. After all. I’m a lawyer. . . . .

The 1000 Pound Man

(A repeat from October 20, 2013)

The heaviest person in the world weighs 1,076 pounds. He is about 5 feet 8 inches “tall.” The regulation National Hockey League goal is 6 feet by 4 feet.   You see where I’m going?? 

I have long felt that the Chicago Blackhawks could win the Stanley Cup every year by simply recruiting the largest people in the world to be the goalies.  You upholster them in padding, mask and protective gear, give them a stick and stuff them into the goal and let them take a nap. Every shot on goal would simply bounce off the goalie. Defense would become a thing of the past. The goalie would go into the history books and the Blackhawks would win the Stanley Cup every year.

The only “hitch” would be that other teams might start recruiting similarly-endowed goalies.  Games would typically end 0 to 0.  Shootouts in overtime could go on for years . . . .

Man Cave

My home was built in 1938 by a man named Henry Selinger. Henry was a violinist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and a music director for WGN-Radio. Shortly after moving in, he built a room over the garage in which to play and practice the violin. The room is all pine and acoustically perfect. When the Selingers moved out, the Weiss family moved in. And then around 1987 – the Petersens.

The room over the garage was originally a rehearsal room for Mr. Selinger. It later became a bedroom for a young boy. This young lad had a BB gun and if you look carefully at the walls and ceiling, you can see it is dotted with BB’s. All over. . . . .

The room became my office, my safe house, refuge. . . . my man cave. There is a door to an small outdoor porch (which I rarely use) and a bees’ nest in one corner above the boards. I leave them alone and they leave me alone. I have left the BB’s as they are (they add character), as well as a University of Michigan “M” decal on the window which adjoins an American flag. And then in the corner – out of sight of prying parents – there is scratched prominently in the wood “RW + DM.”

I learned that Mr. Selinger also bought and sold violins. At one point he owned at least one Stradivarius and a Guarneri. Thus – when I am noodling on my guitar, I sometimes think that Stradivarius and Guarneri also sang in this room. Ahhhh to have been a fly on the wall. . . . .

Chocolate in the Night

I’m usually the first one up & at ’em in the morning. I make the coffee, get the newspapers off the driveway and make my breakfast (usually cereal and fruit). I turn on “Squawk Box” and switch between it and the “Today” show. Donna makes her appearance somewhere in mid-afternoon. . . . . YES I’m kidding. Anyway, a few mornings ago, she came downstairs and lamented that she’d been awake for a few hours. “It must’ve been that chocolate I had last night.”

Chocolate for dessert. Ugh. . . . .I did observe that neither of us can eat chocolate at night without eye-opening consequence at night. Caffeine and all that. Soooo while sitting at the kitchen table – sipping my 4th cup of java – I penned a song – which I (yes) sang. It is to the tune of “Strangers in the Night.”

Chocolate in the Night – Keeps my eyes open 

When I douse the light – I just try copin’ 

I just start to read – Until the clock strikes four.

I just took a bite – then an another

I tried with all my might – Thought of my mother

But it didn’t work – I took another piece.

Chocolate in the night – It’s an addiction

It really is a fright – it’s not a fiction

Everywhere I go – Rain, heat, frost or snow

I will grab a candy bar – a Hersheys’ kiss or chocolate star. . . .

You get my drift. . . . .