Friday, January 31, 2014

How to Make a Pete Seeger

This picture was taken in May of 1921 in Washington, D.C., and shows Charles Louis Seeger, a composer, and his wife and three sons, including youngest son Peter holding his violin-playing mother's hand. The family had bundled themselves up into a car to go off car camping (that's their tented wagon trailer, above and below) as a way to see the world. The parents did small concerts to raise money as they traveled. Note the big water bag hanging from the lamp and resting on the running board.

Charles Seeger, father of Pete Seeger, was himself an anti-war activist whose brother, Alan Seeger, was killed in WWI at the Battle of the Somme. A poet, Alan Seeger wrote I Have a Rendezvous with Death


The picture, above, was also taken in late May of 1921 in Rock Creek Park in Washington, D.C., and shows Charles Seeger, his violin-playing wife Constance Edson Seeger, and their three children, including 2-year-old son Pete, sitting on his father's lap.

A May 22, 1921 article in The Washington Post about the family quoted Charles Seeger:

"We are trying to solve the problem of educating three boys, and at the same time lead a worth-while outdoor life."

Carry on Mr. Seeger; I am pretty sure you will not make a hash of this job!

Behaviorism Joke

After sex, one behaviorist turned to another behaviorist and said, "That was great for you, but how was it for me?"

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Head Like a 9-Pound Hammer

Gideon in a hollow tree on a snowy day.

Weekend reading

The kids have gone back to school, the weather is cooling a little and time is marching on. 

I finished the final reading of my book yesterday so that's been sent back to Penguin; hopefully it will be published in late March.

I took the opportunity last week to make more lemon cordial and gave these two bottles to Cathy and Sunny. Hope you have a  wonderful weekend. Thank you for

The Code Inside the Jack Russell

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Robert Reich For The Win

Former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich writes:
HOW TO DEAL WITH LOW-WAGE EMPLOYERS. I met yesterday with a former executive of a big corporation who had a good idea. Taxpayers spend at least $55 billion a year on benefits (Medicaid, food stamps, etc.) to working people whose employers don’t pay enough to provide them and their families a decent standard of living. So in effect we’re subsidizing these employers – many of which (like Walmart) are large and profitable. His idea was to tax these employers by that amount. It would be easy enough to do since the IRS and the states have the Social Security numbers of all employees who receive these benefits, and can connect them to their employers. Not only would this “lousy-pay” tax be fair to other companies that pay higher wages and don’t get the subsidy. It would also help replenish federal and state budgets. And it would prod these low-paying corporations to raise wages so their employees don’t have to rely on taxpayer-financed benefits. What do you think?
What do I think? Genius!

Budweiser's Super Bowl Ad FAIL

The musical voice here is Passenger (aka Michael David Rosenberg), who has been featured on this blog in the past.

I have several problems with this ad.

The first is the "puppy adoptions" sign. 

That's an expensive and permanent sign, and those dogs are NOT being "adopted" -- they are pure bred dogs being SOLD.  Nothing wrong with that, but do not piss on my leg and tell me it's raining. 

When you are selling pure breed retrievers (the most common pure breed, so no points for free thinking there Budweiser shill-meister), you are not in the ADOPTION business, but in the cash-and-carry business. 

The word "adoption" here is cynical marketing malarkey designed to "dog wash" this ad from the stigma that is now attached to breeding pedigree dogs.  

The second problem I have with this ad is that this stupid blonde lady seems to have a lot of trouble keeping her dogs watched and in a pen.  This is supposed to be cute.  It's not.  It's reckless endangerment.

My third problem with this ad is that it is incoherent, both as a story and as a marketing vehicle.  What is it saying?  What is the product?  Are they selling horses?  Puppies?  White bread romance between model-perfect people in a dream-like setting? 

This ad has NOTHING to do with the product it is selling.  It's bad story with a forgettable label slapped on at the end.  In short, pure crap, stem to stern.

Now Passenger?  That's a great voice and a great song. But that's the ONLY redeeming part of this ad.