Funny

Tune Tuesday: Tell Me Pretty Maiden 1902

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Levy Sheet Music Image One
Image Credit: jhu.edu

One hundred & twenty years ago, the #1 song of 1902 was Tell Me Pretty Maiden by Byron G. Harlan, whistler Joe Belmont and the Florodora Girls. According to Tsort, there are almost NO charts from before 1920. I plugged in today’s date on Playback FM and this is what I got. You can peruse Tsort’s Site Generation Page, describing source charts and consolidation. They seem to have their own method for old stuff and, apparently, Playback FM agrees.

Wikimedia Image Two
Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Florodora is an Edwardian musical comedy. After its long run in London, it became one of the first successful Broadway musicals of the 20th Century. The book was written by Jimmy Davis, under the pseudonym Owen Hall, the music was by Leslie Stuart with additional songs by Paul Rubens and, the lyrics were by Ernest Boyd-Jones, George Arthurs and Rubens.

The original London production opened in 1899, where it ran for a very successful 455 performances. The New York production, which opened the following year, was even more popular, running for 552 performances. After this, the piece was produced throughout the English-speaking world and beyond. The show was famous for its double sextet and its chorus line of “Florodora Girls“.

Wikipedia Summary

It appears that the Harlan & Belmont version, with the Florodora Girls was very, very popular. Second Hand Songs also lists a Frank Stanley as part of the team. UC Santa Barbara lists Frank Banta on piano and calls the group the Edison Sextette.

POTD: Yard Art

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I guess it is yard art. It’s not close to the road for pick-up. And, why a pumpkin is underneath a chair in February…I don’t know. ~Vic

Commode Yard Art
My Personal Collection
02-12-2022

VOTD: Sgt. Kitten Takes Point

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***This is a repost as I try to repair the damage to my site.***

Video of the Day

This was originally posted on June 9. I uploaded the video to WordPress, only to have it malfunction in the Reader. The “Pro” Plan was a complete disaster, which is why it isn’t available, anymore. The server migration that was being done for the “Pro” Plan made crazy echoes of uploaded videos, as all the previously listed links in posts were broken. I have several posts with videos, stuck in my Reader, that won’t play and, even after I delete the post, the echo of the post remains in my Reader feed. Way to go, Happiness Engineers!

I will be deleting & reposting all of my damaged posts…and cursing, loudly. ~Vic

Silly Sunday: Mask Swing

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This is so cute. Best use for those damn masks. ~Vic

VOTD: Having Fun

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Weeeeeeeeeee! ~Vic



Video of the Day

TV Tuesday: Just For Fun 1947

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Richard Hearne Mancunian Films Image One
Image Credit: Mancunian Films & britmovie.co.uk Forum

Seventy-five years, ago, today, the black & white TV Movie Just For Fun aired on the BBC. Created/devised and written by Richard Hearne, he stars as Mr. Pastry:

…an old man with a walrus moustache [sic], dressed in a black suit or raincoat and with a trademark bowler hat. [T]he the bumbling old man would have adventures, partly slapstick, partly comic dance, with two young friends. Jon Pertwee also starred in the show in a variety of roles. The Mr. Pastry character had originated in the 1936 stage show Big Boy in which Hearne had appeared with Fred Emney.

Wikipedia Career Summary Snipet

Directed and produced by Walton Anderson, it also starred John Blore Borelli (and his orchestra), Buddy Bradley, Joan Heal, Yvonne Hearne, Jean Kent & Henry Oscar.

Hearne first appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show in March 1954, with many subsequent visits. Buster Keaton was a fan. He was interviewed by producer Barry Letts for the role of Doctor Who when Pertwee departed but, wished to play The Doctor as Mr. Pastry. Letts, in turn, offered the role to Tom Baker.

I couldn’t find any clips for this movie but, I did find Hearne/Mr. Pastry on Ed Sullivan. ~Vic

Additional:
Just For Fun (BFI)
Just For Fun (British Comedy Guide)

POTD: Stiffy

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T-shirt advertisement from a buddy of mine. Just a little hunting humor… ~Vic

Hunt Hard Image
09-02-2015
Click for a larger view.

Picture of the Day

VOTD: Rednecks

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Video of the Day

Story Sunday: Can Opener Bridge

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Can Opener Bridge Image One
Photo Credit: Amusing Planet
Photo Author: Mark Clifton
Click for a larger view.

At 11 foot 8 inches [sic], the Norfolk Southern-Gregson Street Overpass, located in Durham, [NC] […], is a bit too short. The federal government recommends that bridges on public roads should have a clearance of at least 14 feet [but], when this railroad trestle was built in the 1940s, there were no standards for minimum clearance. As a result, trucks would frequently hit the bridge and get its roof scrapped [sic] off.

Durhan resident Jürgen Henn has been witnessing these crashes for years from across the street where he worked. Wishing to share these hilarious mishaps with the rest of the world, Henn set up a video camera in April 2008 and began recording them for his ever popular website 11foot8.com. By the end of 2015, more than one hundred trucks had their tops violently ripped off. These scalping videos, which are also available on his YouTube Channel, have racked up millions of views bringing this particular bridge, nicknamed “the can opener”, a fair amount of international fame.

As Jürgen Henn explains in his website [sic], the bridge cannot be raised because doing so would require the tracks to be raised for several miles to adjust the incline. North Carolina Railroad doesn’t want to pay for the enormous expense it would entail. The bridge cannot be lowered either because there is a major sewer line running only four feet under the street.

Can Opener Bridge Image Two
Photo Credit: Amusing Planet
Photo Author: Mark Clifton
Click for a larger view.

Instead, the city authorities installed an alert system that detects when an over-height truck tries to pass under and flashes yellow warning lights several feet ahead of the bridge. [However], many drivers either do not pay attention or fail to heed the warning and crash into the bridge. The railroad department, who owns the bridge, installed a heavy steel crash beam in front of the bridge that takes most of the impact, protecting the actual structure of the train trestle. This crash beam is hit so often that it had to be replaced at least once.

As far as both parties are concerned, the city of Durham and North Carolina Railroad, adequate steps have been taken to solve the problem. The railroad authorities’ concern is with the bridge and the rails above, not the trucks, [hence], the beam. The city, on the other hand, has posted prominent “low clearance” signs from [three] blocks away, leading up to the trestle, over and above the automatic warning system that is triggered by vehicles that are too tall. Apparently, these measures are not enough to prevent accidents. On average there is one crash every month.

When Henn interviewed a few drivers as they deflated their tires to lower their vehicles enough to free them, some told him that they didn’t know their trucks’ heights, while others insisted they didn’t see the signs. Durham officials are now trying out a new tactic. A few months ago, they installed a traffic signal at the intersection before the bridge and hooked up the height sensor to it. When an over-height truck approaches the intersection, the light turns red and stays red for a long time. The light eventually turns green but, the city hopes that the long delay will give the drivers enough time to realize their truck will not fit under the bridge. Unfortunately for the drivers, and to the delight of the rest, the bridge continues to shave the tops of over-height vehicles.

The Infamous Can Opener Bridge
Amusing Planet
Kaushik Patowary
December 17, 2016

I can attest to this bridge, personally. I lived in Durham for two years in the middle 90s. Why those folks don’t turn off onto Peabody Street or Pettigrew Street, coming from the other side, I don’t know. They just plow right under it. It is right behind Brightleaf Square. ~Vic

Jürgen Henn’s Website
Henn’s YouTube Channel

Additional:
11 Feet, 8 Inches… (99% Invisible/Kurt Kohlstedt/08-29-2016)
Durham’s Bridge of Death Will Decapitate Any Tall Truck (Bloomberg/John Metcalfe/10-25-2012)
Trucks Have Hit This Low Bridge More Than 100 Times… (Vox/Timothy B. Lee/01-06-2016)
A Little Off The Top… (Indy Week/Danny Hooley/01-06-2016)
Norfolk Southern–Gregson Street Overpass (Wikipedia)

Compilation of Crashes

Movie Monday: Suffrage And The Man 1912

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Suffrage And The Man IMDb Amazon Image
Image Credit: IMDb & Amazon

One hundred, ten years ago, today, the B&W silent, short comedy film Suffrage and the Man was released. Produced by the French company Eclair, in conjunction with the Women’s Political Union, its original title was Suffrage Wins Herbert.

A young man learns that his betrothed is leaning toward the suffragette cause. He remonstrates with her father to be told “My butler and my bootblack may vote, why not my wife and daughter?” He cannot agree, however and their quarrel brings about a broken engagement. Disappointed and unhappy, he seeks forgetfulness by going to a summer resort. There, he succumbs to the wiles of a designing mother and, caught in an embarrassing position, her daughter “feinting a faint” in his arms, he permits their engagement to be announced. He learns, by an accidental eavesdropping, of the mother’s trickery. He loses no time to denounce the deception and withdraw his offer of marriage. The mother and daughter promptly start suit tor breach of promise. In the meantime, votes have been won for women. The trial of the suit comes up before a mixed jury of men and women with the old sweetheart as forewoman of the twelve peers. Their verdict is acquittal and, as might be expected, “Suffrage Wins Herbert” with a permanently happy result in his reconciliation and marriage.

IMDb Summary
Written by: Moving Picture World

According to Silent Era, the director is unknown, the cast is unknown and the film’s survival status is unknown. There is one trivia bit…it is based on a story written by playwright Dorothy Steele. ~Vic

Funny Friday: Stress Reducer

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I’ve had this one for a while. It’s dated November 2007 but, I don’t remember where it came from. ~Vic

Hans-Max 2022 TV Draft: Round Five-Pick One-Sisters (1991-1996)

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Sisters Pinterest Image One
Photo Credit: Pinterest

Hanspostcard/Max has a TV draft challenge. This is my Round Five pick.

I didn’t catch the first season of this show during its original run but, started watching during season two (it was a while before I got to see season one). I was immediately hooked by the quirky interaction between the sisters and their day to day lives in Winnetka, IL and, I was already a Patricia Kalember fan due to the short-lived Kay O’Brien TV show. ~Vic

Created by Ron Cowen and Daniel Lipman, the series begins one year after the death of the family’s father, Dr. Thomas Reed, a workaholic, played in flashbacks by three different actors but, mostly by Peter White. The matriarch of the family is Beatrice (Elizabeth Hoffman), a long-suffering, neglected wife, who turns to alcohol to deal with the doctor’s multiple affairs. She has four daughters:

Alexandra…”Alex” (Swoosie Kurtz), the eldest. She married a plastic surgeon that had affairs on her and she divorced him, retaining some wealth. After battling breast cancer, she became a talk show host. She frequently butts heads her daughter, Reed Halsey (played by three different actresses, most notably Ashley Judd). She eventually remarries.

Sisters TMDb Image Two
New grouping with Charley, on the left.
Image Credit: TMDb

Theodora…”Teddy” (Sela Ward), the second daughter. At the beginning of the series, she is returning from California and is shocked to discover that her ex-husband, Mitch, is engaged to her youngest sister, Frankie. She, drunk, temporarily, stops the wedding with a shotgun (she inherited Beatrice’s drinking habits). An artist in school, she becomes a fashion designer, helming three different companies. She goes on to marry twice more…to Det. James Falconer (George Clooney), the cop that investigated her daughter Cat’s rape (he was killed in an explosion) and Dr. Gabriel Sorenson (Stephen Collins), the doctor that saved her life when she was shot in the head.

Georgiana…”Georgie” (Patricia Kalember), the third daughter. She is the stay-at-home mom with the most level head of all the sisters. A part-time real estate agent, she is the one the other sisters come to for guidance. She and her husband, John, have two sons, the youngest surviving leukemia. She carries and gives birth to Thomas George, Frankie & Mitch’s son. After trouble with her first son, she has an affair with her therapist, separates from John, has a second affair with a much younger classmate in college and, eventually returns to John.

Francesca…”Frankie” (Julianne Phillips…Springsteen’s first wife), the fourth daughter. She is a highly paid executive, a workaholic like her father and discovered that she was infertile. Georgie becomes her surrogate for her baby. Her work habits break apart her marriage to Mitch. Afterwards, she quits her job and buys a local diner. She eventually moves to Japan for another job.

Charlotte…”Charley” (a doctor, originally played by Jo Anderson, then Sheila Kelley) as the unknown, fifth, illegitimate daughter that shows up in the fourth season, looking for a bone marrow donation (a shift in the story-line as Julianne Phillips prepared to leave the show). The nicknames are a product of their father wanting boys and never getting one. The four older sisters tagged Charlotte with her own nickname.

Supporting Characters:
John Witsig (Garrett M. Brown), Georgie’s husband.
Mitch Margolis (Ed Marinaro), Teddy’s high school sweetheart, ex-husband & Frankie’s ex-husband.
Catherine “Cat” Margolis (Heather McAdam), Teddy & Mitch’s daughter that goes on to be a cop.

Much of the show is full of flashbacks, particularly the interactions of the sisters growing up.

Trivia Bits:
♦ Patricia Kalember’s husband in real life, Daniel Gerroll, had a recurring role in season five. He played psychiatrist Dr. David Caspian, who was counseling her character Georgie.
Julianne Phillips and Patricia Kalember also co-starred in Fletch Lives.
♦ Elizabeth Hoffman was a minor, recurring character on Stargate SG-1 and played Eleanor Roosevelt in two mini-series: The Winds of War (1983) and War & Remembrance (1988-1989).

Scene & Opening Theme

Word Wednesday: Cemetery

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Devil's Dictionary Cemetery Image
Screen Capture
Ambrose Bierce
The Devil’s Dictionary

Another smart ass on the Urban Dictionary called it “something that people are dying to get into.” Everybody is a comedian. ~Vic