Friday, July 24, 2009

Cleveland Easy Listens

Yes, that's right. See, Cleveland does not rock. That expression is a misrepresentation. Now, it's not terrible, but "rocks" is a stretch. We thought "Easy Listening" was a more accurate musical metaphor.

Our main stop in Cleveland was the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
  • Among the 1st things we saw when we walked was a newly furbished memorial/tribute to the late Michael Jackson. And here I thought one of the primary purposes of this trip was to get away and avoid all things Michael Jackson for at least one day.
  • Part of the tribute was the following quote from Usher, who like Jackson also sings musical songs: "I would not be the artist, performer, and philanthropist I am today without the influence of Michael." First of all, fuck you Michael Jackson. Secondly, philanthropist? Michael Jackson's influenced Usher to become a big philanthropist? Are you sure you meant "philanthropist"? Are you sure you didn't mean "child molester."
  • We wondered where the term "rolling stone" originated. We were able to identify 4 uses off the top of our heads: 1. The Rolling Stones 2. Rolling Stone magazine 3. "Like a Rolling Stone," by Bob Dylan 4. "Papa Was a Rolling Stone," by The Temptations. So, where did it start? Are any or all of these referencing each other or are they each referencing something else entirely or are none of them referencing anything?
  • Featured in an exhibit about the decrying response to the rock movement and its counterculture was the following quote, attributed to a San Antonio councilman: "The 1st Amendment should not apply to rock and roll." Which is weird because rock songs are probably the main things shouted in crowded theaters. The craziest thing about this quote is when it was said. You would probably guess the 60s, right? You would be wrong. 1985! Way before Nirvana! Hadn't people given in and accepted this whole "crazy kids with their loud music" by 1985? Apparently everyone but one San Antonio councilman had.
  • One of the exhibits had juxtaposed pictures of Chris Brown and Rhianna performing in concert. Problem #1: Chris Brown and Rhianna= rock stars? I think not. Problem #2: Seems the R&R HOF missed the whole Chris Brown beating the shit out of Rhianna extravaganza.
  • I liked this Bob Marley quote: "One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain." Now, Chris Brown, on the other hand...
  • We watched a 40 minute movie that had excerpts from Woodstock. This movie was terrible and made the festival seem very bad. Every other movie or feature I have ever seen about Woodstock has made it seem like the most amazing 3 days in the hisotry of the world. I can only conclude that the title of this movie was "Woodstock: The Worst 40 Minutes."

After the Hall of Fame, we did everything else fun there was to do in downtown Cleveland. This took 0.08 seconds. Actually, that's an exaggeration. Those extra 0.08 seconds were totally fabricated. Hence, the whole "Cleveland does not rock" declaration above. We walked around aimlessly looking for something cool to do or look at. We even asked a local "is there anything fun to do in Cleveland?" She responded without any words, but rather merely with a bemused facial expression that implied she had never heard the words "fun" and "Cleveland" used so close to each other. Turns out we are not the first people to realize that Cleveland is lame. These guys filmed an elaborate documentary on the subject. Then, they filmed a sequel. "Cleveland: we're not Detroit!" Can't wait to visit Detroit on Sunday!

Update on our battle with law enforcement: we visited the Beachwood municipal court to see if we could expedite the process and find a way to take care of the ticket without appearing before a judge. We left a message with the magistrate judge, asking for leniency. We got back word that the judge was so horrified and offended when he heard that we had been speeding 30 miles over the limit, that he could not accept a plea that didn't include the following terms: Butch would have to pay $300 and accept a suspended jail sentence of 2 days that would be enforced against him if he is caught speeding any time in the next 6 months. Butch did not accept this deal. We will keep you updated as events continue to unfold.

Argument of the Day

What makes a game a "perfect game"? Should it count as a perfect game if a pitcher throws 9 perfect innings but is then pulled when the game goes into extra innings? Is pitching 9 perfect innings a perfect game or do you have to finish the whole game? If so, what if a pitcher comes in at the beginning of the 2nd inning and then pitches 9 perfect innings? How about if someone pitcher 5 perfect innings in a rain-shortened game?


Ami said...

Go way back to the 1st Century BC. Plubilius Syrus wrote a bunch of Latin proverbs, including one about people who are constantly on the move who do not put down roots. In the 15th century, Desiderius Erasmus of Rotterdam wrote his Adagia, a series of verses based on his studies of Latin texts. Among the phrases he coined were "Between a Rock and a Hard Place," and "Crocodile Tears" and "Many hands make light work" and "Cut to the Chase." Another one he wrote was Saxum (rocks) volutum (rolled) non (no) obducitur (collect) musco (moss). Hence the phrase, "a rolling stone gathers no moss." It is likely Erasmus was inspired by Syrus' earlier writing.
But that's not the whole story.

Muddy Waters wrote a song in 1948 called "Rollin' Stone," comparing a person to Erasmus' proverb. (Whether or not Mr. Waters knew of Erasmus is irrelevant.)

Brian Jones, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards were blues fans first and foremost -- huge Muddy Waters fans -- and Jones allegedy suggested the name of the group as a plural of Waters' "Rollin' Stone."

da2057 said...

Re: Perfect Game - Not to state the obvious, but the name says it all. All of the stars must align for the pitcher. It must be perfect from start to finish. No walking the first batter and then retiring the next 27 or even getting the first 27 and then coming out for the 10th. Even an error, which is in no way the pitcher's fault, ruins it. The beauty of a perfect game is partly that it does not lend itself to subjectivity (well, aside from umps making bad calls and having inconsistent strike zones). While a no-hitter is great, there have been some where the pitcher has lost the game or walked a bunch of guys or had multiple errors made behind him. Not so with PGs. To be "perfect" everything must go right, even your team scoring a run for you and playing impeccable defense behind you.

Re: Cleveland & Detroit - possibly the 2 worst major cities to spend time in the US. Combo of bad weather, pervasive industrial sites and abandoned buildings. Visited both on past road trips and jetted out of both as soon as the respective baseball games were over. The only positive is that I can't imagine Lebron James will want to stick around that crap-hole of a city for another 7-10 years with NYC beckoning. In fact, a trip to Cleveland might do more to raise a Knick fans morale than anything else going on with the team at the moment.