Ah, Wednesday night. The week’s big work is done, tomorrow is pizza night. I feel like Arthur, caught between the moon and New York City.

Well, that just ruined everything.

(running to shower to scrub entire self with loofah)

I have no idea why Christopher Cross popped into my head; I never even saw the movie. But it used to play on the jukebox at Greenstreets, all the time – along with “Sailing,” and “Ride Like the Wind,” the other whiny exercises in aural somnambulism from Mr. Croft. Is he still around? I hate to type “” in my website, lest I experience the same panic I faced last night when I typed “” with the speakers on, and yes, that’s a warning.

Well, it’s there, and it plays his songs whether you want them or not. He’s still around. The bio has a nice self-deprecating touch:

Were you to mention the name Christopher Cross to a group of average Joes-on-the-street, you’d be certain to elicit one or more of the following responses: “Oh, yeah -- Sailing!", “He did that Arthur movie song", ”Ride Like the Wind rocked!” Pressed any further, the same people might respond along the lines of, “Where’d he go?” or “He just put out that green album with the stork on it and disappeared.”

This presupposes that one is inclined to stop a gaggle of Joes and put the question to them, but nevermind. The bio quickly yields to the old familiar trope for the Valiant Artist:

But write again he did. Though not prolific by any modern corporate product-spewing standard, Christopher carried on creating vital pop music, even as his star settled into a more realistic location on the horizon, and a smaller but doggedly devoted following went along.

Translation: no more hits, and Atlantic City hotel gigs.

Continuing the evidence is a string of post-megahit albums from the mid-1980s to the present that represents, in a most gratifying manner, a hard-travelled road of integrity, a refusal to compromise: Every Turn of the World, Christopher’s foray into a harder rocking style which befuddled radio programmers (not a difficult feat) but delighted fans

Oh those easily confused radio programmers! Let’s peak into the office of HOT ROQIN’ KROQ FM 101! Gentlemen, what are we to make of this latest Cross offering? This notable balladeer has upended our expectations with his fresh, innovative take on this thing we call rock. It is quite perfect in every way, being that it flows from the heart and mind of Cross himself, but how the devil to we fit it into our playlist? It’s simply too good. It shames Ratt, if I may be so bold.

Clearly, Mr. Cross’ absence from the American pop machinery has not kept him from moving forward. Every few years, the world has been gifted with a new set of CC songs, each of the aforementioned albums growing innately from the last while resolutely advancing the state of his art.

He’s playing next month at Cactus Pete’s Casino.

Today’s John Kerry firm-face moment, taken from the front page of today’s Strib:

Daaaa, daaaaaaa . . . .Da Da Dada Da Da, Da Dada, Da Dada, da dadeeda da deeda da dee da (swink! Bomp.)

Speaking of that schwink! Bomp – we all know that was the musical accompaniment for Mr. Van Dyke’s elegant pratfall, and the subsequent revision which had him evading the ottoman obstacle with a deft example of twinkle-toed grace. Remember what happened afterwards? As I recall, Rose Marie and Morey Amsterdam got up and shook his hand; Morey may have given him a oh-you-kid finger wag to refer to the previous four years of falling over the ottoman.

Have you ever come home, found your friends in the living room, and had them all rise to shake your hand as you entered the room? No. Nowadays people come home, find friends, and no one gets off the sofa.




But this made sense to me when I was a kid – it was on TV, after all, and that’s how adults behaved. But even then I never accepted the Petrie’s kid, Richie. I hated Richie, simply because he was a bad actor. He might have been the worst child actor ever. And his place in the show was rather uncertain – you had the suspicion that Rob and Laura hit the sauce at night, and around eleven they’d look at each other with a blurry realization that they had a kid somewhere, didn’t they? Coulda swore we hadda kid. Whassis name again? Then they passed out. The next day they wake up and find out the kid's wandered off, and they must have really tied one on last night because Rob got to do that thing with the superglue he kept begging to try:

Anyway, Richie's now a stagehand, according to this page. He’ll be 50 next year.

You know, that really was a rather clever sitcom. The DVDs have pristine copies and period commercials, too.

And why did I go to Dwight Twilley's website? Because I heard "I'm on Fy-yah" on the radio, and it reminded me of what radio sounded like when that song first came on. It cut through the disco and the folkie dreck. It had a certain retro-twang appeal, even though the song itself is a rather jumbled composition - rockabilly after a night of beer and barbs, frankly. It's almost the hick twin of "Bang a Gong," another needless but necessary tune. Both were tunes that seemed to exist before they were recorded. (The Hollies' "Long Cool Woman" is another such example - it's not so much the song itself as the Platonic Ideal it seems to be describing.) (Yes, I know what pretentious twaddle that is, and that's why I could never be a rock critic: I could never mention the Hollies and Plato in the same sentence without wanting to run to the shower to loofah off the shame.

And so now we've come full circle.
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