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an endless succession of beans and nuts.

"The whole night, down to Rihanna’s eloquent performance of 'Lift Me Up' from 'Wakanda Forever,' felt well oiled but entirely preprogrammed because, of course, it was."

 What?! Everyone seemed drunk? I might have watched if I'd known that.

Hey, WaPo, "well oiled" means drunk. If you don't mean literally that oil, the lubricant, was used, you have to get "machine" in there — something like The show worked like a well-oiled machine — if you want to say it functioned effectively. 

I'm reading "It was a lovely, back-to-basics Oscar night. Sorry about that. At Sunday’s 95th Academy Awards, a focus on the winners, not the drama" (WaPo).

Yes, the Oscars took place last night. The thing that we'd be hearing criticism of if it didn't happen happened, so there's no way to know what motivated the Academy, and I just don't care anymore.

I don't know if Rihanna somehow injected "eloquence" into "Lift Me Up," but I read the lyrics, and they're the opposite of eloquent:
Burning in a hopeless dream
Hold me when you go to sleep
Keep me in the warmth of your love
When you depart, keep me safe
Safe and sound

But that nonsense did not win. This won: 

Translated lyrics hereLike the shrill voice of a bird that can ring your ears... Like singing a song that can make your fingers snap to the beat....

"Mr. DeRuvo initially decided to forgo shoes because of agonizing bunions, but he has stayed barefoot for reasons that transcend physical comfort."

"In that time, he has become a litmus test of people’s forbearance and their willingness to tolerate a stranger’s unconventional lifestyle and perhaps even try to understand it. There are questions he is asked frequently that he is always happy to answer. How does he manage snow and ice? Doesn’t he get sharp objects stuck in his thick calluses? But that’s the simple stuff. 'Navigating the terrain is easy,' Mr. DeRuvo said. 'Navigating people is tricky.; When asked to leave a shop or a restaurant, he normally does so without protest, said Mr. DeRuvo’s wife, Lini Ecker, a shoe-wearer who serves as a bridge between her husband and a world that generally asks for conformity. 'When someone has put on their "I’m in charge personae,"' she said, 'once they start, they can never change their minds.' On occasion, Mr. DeRuvo pushes back. 'If I’m feeling feisty,' he said...."

He has a job that works with barefootedness: Pilates instructor.

We're told he has other quirks: He prefers to use chopsticks and "He needs reggae music to play in the background at almost all times."

His wife must love him. I mean: reggae music playing in the background at all times! Well: "almost." Who knows what percentage of her time is free of reggae and whether her preferred music genre is ever the score to their time together?

By the way, I think bare feet track less filth indoors than shod feet. You're far more likely to know you've got something on your feet and to quickly get it off than you are to know there's something on your shoes. Ideally, we'd all take our shoes off when we go indoors, but that's not happening in shops and restaurants and other places of business. 

I remember when I was a teenager and sought the freedom to go barefoot at school. I still remember the name of the teacher — was he a science teacher? — who exclaimed "You'll get ringworm!"

ADDED: Wikipedia has an article, "Barefoot." One subheading is "Inquisition and witch trials":

During the era of the Catholic Inquisition it was a conviction that women allegedly practicing witchcraft had their ability to use their "sinister powers" largely impaired if they were barefoot. Arrested women first had their footwear taken away and it was ensured that they remained barefoot at all times. Due to interpretations of the Malleus Maleficarum it was believed that in case an accused witch was not strictly kept with bare feet she could cast a spell on people by only looking at them. As the prosecutors wanted to avoid any risks, it was ensured that the bare feet of the women remained visible throughout. During questioning or in court, the accused women often had to stand within the boundaries of a consecrated spot with the soles of their bare feet constantly being in contact with the sanctified section of the ground.... To further ensure safety they were often led in walking backwards for their court sessions. They were not allowed to turn around until their bare feet were visibly placed within the bounded spot....

"It’s a real pain to carry a pad around, and I have found that once I have jotted something down I tend to relax and forget it."

"If I toss the bits into my mind, on the other hand, what needs to be remembered stays while the rest fades into oblivion. I like to leave things to this process of natural selection. This reminds me of an anecdote I’m fond of. When Paul Valéry was interviewing Albert Einstein, he asked the great scientist, 'Do you carry a notebook around to record your ideas?' Einstein was an unflappable man, but this question clearly unnerved him. 'No,' he answered. 'There’s no need for that. You see I rarely have new ideas.' Come to think of it, there have been very few situations when I wished I had a notepad on me. Something truly important is not that easy to forget once you’ve entrusted it to your memory.'"

Writes Haruki Murakami in "Novelist as a Vocation" (Amazon link).

Speaking of notebooks... my other favorite writer, David Sedaris, carries a small notebook everywhere and writes something in it about 10 times a day. In "Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls," we see him explaining his practice to a 7-year-old boy. When he encounters a headline, "Dangerous Olives Could Be on Sale," and writes it down in his "a small Europa-brand reporter’s notebook," the boy asks why, and he says, "It’s for your diary.... You jot things down during the day, then tomorrow morning you flesh them out." Of course, the 7-year-old boy still asks "why?" The reader knows why!

Speaking of memory... I've been working on a Spotify playlist I named "Memory"):

The songs need to have something to do with memory and to be things I'd enjoy listening to in sequence... in case you're thinking of making suggestions for my list, which you can see is very small.

Alternatively, tell me what you think Einstein would have on his Spotify playlist.

As for Murakami, I'm picturing this.

ALSO: Here's the Einstein playlist I made (based on "The story of Albert Einstein and the music he loved"):
Einstein quote about music: "If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music... I get most joy in life out of music."

The great songwriter Burt Bacharach has died. Let's talk about our favorite Burt Bacharach songs.

The man lived to be 94, so there's nothing to cry about. Let's talk about the beauty of the songs. 

WAIT: That Spotify list I embedded can't be right! Be Bop a Lula?! Here's Wikipedia's list of his songs. I'll try to find a better playlist to embed.

ADDED: This looks good:

AND: To make it all Dionne Warwick:

ALSO: Looking at the Wikipedia list, which is in chronological order, I think the first Burt Bacharach song that got into my head was "Magic Moment," sung by Perry Como and a hit in 1958 (when I was 7).  Also big for me: "Baby It's You" (The Shirelles, 1961). And in 1962, 2 Gene Pitney songs: "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance" and "Make It Easy on Yourself." 

There are some on that list I've never heard of, like "Me Japanese Boy I Love You" (a 1964 Bobby Goldsboro hit with a hilariously politically incorrect headline).

My favorite on that list is the 1965 Jackie DeShannon recording, "What the World Needs Now Is Love," so memorably played in one of my favorite movies, "Bob and Carol and Ted and Alice." Didn't we all leave the theater rededicated to love?

And there's "The Look of Love," the 1967 Dusty Springfield hit.

PLUS: Here's my son John's Facebook post with a long excerpt from the NYT obituary and some personal comments, including something about "What the World Needs Now": "used in an unusual, almost surreal scene in the movie 'Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice,' in a way I find very moving."

AND: I love the original The Shirelles version of "Baby It's You." It embedded itself into my 10-year-old mind. You can hear Burt himself singing in the "sha la la la la" part. But this song has the great distinction of also having been recorded by The Beatles and The Carpenters. And there's a beautiful version by Bette Midler.

ADDED: An hour ago, I wrote "there's nothing to cry about. Let's talk about the beauty of the songs," but I've been playing the music all this time, and I have cried over the beauty of the songs.

"He awoke to the sound of water dripping into a rusted sink. The streets below were bathed in medieval moonlight, reverberating silence."

"He lay there grappling with the terror of beauty, as the night unfolded like a Chinese screen. He lay shuddering, riveted by flickering movements of aliens and angels as the words and melodies of 'Marquee Moon' were formed, drop by drop, note by note, from a state of calm yet sinister excitement. He was Tom Verlaine, and that was his process: exquisite torment. Born Thomas Joseph Miller, raised in Wilmington, Delaware, he left his parental home and shed his name, a discarded skin curled in the corner of a modest garage among stacks of used air-conditioners that required his father’s constant professional attention...."
Writes Patti Smith in "He Was Tom Verlaine/Patti Smith remembers her friend, who possessed the child’s gift of transforming a drop of water into a poem that somehow begat music" (The New Yorker).

"He lived twenty-eight minutes from where I was raised. We could easily have sauntered into the same Wawa on the Wilmington-South Jersey border in search of Yoo-hoo or Tastykakes. We might have met, two black sheep, on some rural stretch, each carrying books of the poetry of French Symbolists—but we didn’t. Not until 1973, on East Tenth Street, across from St. Mark’s Church, where he stopped me and said, 'You’re Smith.'... Examining each other’s bookcases, we were amazed to find that our books were nearly identical, even those by authors difficult to find. Cossery, Hedayat, Tutuola, Mrabet...."

Goodbye to Tom Verlaine, my fellow Wilmingtonian. I too lived among the Butterscotch Krimpets, long ago. Never have heard of Cossery, Hedayat, Tutuola, and Mrabet though. Imagine being into Cossery, Hedayat, Tutuola, Mrabet, then meeting somebody who had books by all 4.

"I see that you're going to get rid of your piano. Good luck with that. We couldn't even give ours away so I took it apart and cut it up..."

"... and got rid of it by putting it in the trash over a 4 week period. I broke up the string harp with a sledge hammer. Used a drill to loosen the strings then just cut them off." 

Said William50 in last night's "Snow Car" café

He was referring to something I said in passing in an earlier post — that I had looked up "Flatter!," because it was part of an image on a card that I found in the piano bench, which I was emptying out because I'm getting rid of the piano. 

Breaking up a piano made me think about this great 80s video where they destroy a piano: 

And since you mentioned the harp inside, we must remember when Harpo Marx went nuts on a piano and extracted the harp:

But here's how I responded to William50 (who may not have  noticed that I'd already revealed in the comments on the other post that I am paying a professional piano dealer to move the piano out of our house and to dispose of it properly):
Meade suggested doing something like [what you did]. I see multiple reasons to prefer to pay a reputable piano dealer $360 to swiftly spirit the whole hulk out of the house. 
1. It's a lot of work taking the thing [apart] and lugging it [out to] the street, consuming time and effort and possibly resulting in injury to yourself and damage to doorjambs and floors. 
2. It would sit out there on the terrace for all to see and to find ugly and offensively wasteful. 
3. It will burden the city -- and the taxpayers -- to need to pick up these pieces and carry them away. 
4. The reputable piano dealer is experience[d] in disposing of pianos and may find an actual home for the intact piano. 
5. The piano will sit in its usual place, unmolested, until professionals come in and skillfully remove it in one piece. This is a company I have used 3 or 4 times in the past to move this piano from room to room, and I [trust] them to do it well. 
6. I like supporting a good local business! They deserve to be paid for the work that they do. You don't have to use your own labor just because you (or your partner) can perform labor. We're doing a lot of painting this winter, putting labor into that, but if I had a local business I trusted to do this work well and without needing to spend too much time in our house, I would be glad to pay someone. 
7. $360 may sound like a lot, especially if you believe your beautiful piano should be worth at least $5,000, but I choose to live in the real world, where prices are determined by supply and demand. Accept reality and make your time living in it as good as you can. Maybe you enjoyed sledgehammering a piano. I hope you did!

"Some fans tried to mount a 'Save Splash Mountain' campaign, even urging opponents of the switch to enlist the help of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R)."

"Others acknowledged they would miss a classic but were looking forward to a new chapter for the ride. Still others argued that it was past time for the original to go, given its source material."

Splash Mountain was based on "Song of the South," the "1946 film set in post-Civil War Georgia that has been under fire since its release" and that Disney CEO Bob Iger has said is "just not appropriate in today’s world." Is he right? Who can say? Who has seen this movie? 

I've only ever seen the "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah" sequence. 

The singer is James Baskett (Wikipedia), who "appeared with Louis Armstrong on Broadway in the 1929 black musical revue Hot Chocolates and in several all-black New York films, including Harlem is Heaven (1932)."
["Song of the South"] was one of the first Hollywood portrayals of a black actor as a non-comic character in a leading role in a film meant for general audiences.
Baskett was prohibited from attending the film's premiere in Atlanta, Georgia, because Atlanta was racially segregated by law.

Although Baskett was occasionally criticized for accepting such a "demeaning" role (most of his acting credits were that of African-American stereotypes), his acting was almost universally praised, and columnist Hedda Hopper, along with Walt Disney, was one of the many journalists and personalities who declared that he should receive an Academy Award for his work. 
On March 20, 1948, Baskett received an Academy Honorary Award for his performance as Uncle Remus. He was the first African-American male actor to win an Academy Award.

I don't think hiding the film is the best solution. Straightforward confrontation with the bad should go along with honoring the good and understanding the past. Disney protects its own interests and deserves little credit for acting in accordance with the prevailing elite opinion.

What is the good? I don't know! I haven't seen the film. But obviously Baskett himself was good, the song was good, and the animation was good. 

And, my God, Baskett was only 42 years old in that clip. He died 2 years later, less than 4 months after they gave him that Oscar. Why should his work be buried? Maybe there's a great answer, but it's hard to discuss when we can't see the movie. Disney lets us see "Dumbo," despite the crow characters, one of whom, Fats Crow, was voiced by Baskett.

Anyway, Splash Mountain finally embarrassed Disney enough that it's turning the flume ride into "Tiana’s Bayou Adventure," based on "The Princess and the Frog," which had a black princess character.  

"Dino sings deceptively. You can’t hear any effort, you can barely hear any breathing."

"There’re little slurs and modulations that are as hard to sing as they are easy on the ear. In the bridge, he hits a blue note and then a line or two later ('I heard somebody whisper, please adore me') there is a little waver in his voice that brings to mind Nick Lucas, Tiny Tim’s mentor, who sang the original 'Tip-Toe Thru the Tulips.'"

Writes Bob Dylan about Dean Martin's version of "Blue Moon, in "The Philosophy of Modern Song."

Let's listen to Nick Lucas:

"The whole night, down to Rihanna’s eloquent performance of 'Lift Me Up' from 'Wakanda Forever,' felt well oiled but entirely preprogrammed because, of course, it was.""I see that you're going to get rid of your piano. Good luck with that. We couldn't even give ours away so I took it apart and cut it up..."

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