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Category: 2016

December 25, 2016: George Michael ~ Freedom

It used to be that we would say the famous people died in groups of three.

I think by now everyone acknowledges the enormous amount of suckage that 2016 represents. Yeah, sure, people who are famous die. And yeah, there are a lot of people who are paying this year for choices they made when they were younger. And we’re all getting older.

That doesn’t mean it gets any easier, especially when our icons are dying daily. We just can’t keep up, can’t recover.

I was never much of a Wham! fan, because the music was way too pop-oriented for an edgy New Wave fan, but they were in the clubs when I was, and the music was all over the radio back before I stayed tuned to NPR most of the time. It wasn’t until Freedom hit the airwaves that I really paid any attention to George Michael.

This song became one of my anthems, intended to be sung at the top of my lungs in the car.

I’m sorry that fame comes at such a price, that we do what we do to those who live a different life. Sorry especially for the ones who crash and burn early. His was another unique voice silenced in a year that has hit the music industry hard and its fans harder.

53 is too damn young. Trust me. I know.

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November 15, 2016: Hair – Let the Sunshine In

From Wikipedia:

Hair is a 1979 musical war comedy-drama film adaptation of the 1968 Broadway musical of the same name about a Vietnam War draftee who meets and befriends a tribe of long-haired hippies on his way to the army induction center. The hippies introduce him to their environment of cannabis, LSD, unorthodox relationships and draft dodging.

I was a sophomore in high school, and working on my school, newspaper when the movie came out. I wrote a review for the paper, which I have around here somewhere and may add later, if I feel like it.

My father, who had seen the musical onstage with the original cast, had the music on reel to reel tape, and it was a regular request in our house.

When the movie came out, I was excited to see it for the first time. (Nudity wasn’t a thing for kids then or now, really.)

Until this scene came onscreen, I was all about listening to the music and seeing how it played out in real life.

Now, here’s the thing. Dad used to take us to airshows when we were kids. We would see the old WWII planes as well as more modern military craft. After the movie, I wouldn’t go near the C-130s. I couldn’t shake this scene, no matter what I tried.

It is virtually impossible for me to see these airplanes and not see Arlington National Cemetery on the other side.

This song has popped onto my Pandora feed a couple of times since I added HAIR to the playlist for my Modern Musicals channel.

Today, I’m sharing this with you.

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November 11, 2016: Leonard Cohen and Armistice Day

It seems fitting, somehow, to include this video on this of all days.

At the same time some of us are mourning the losses on this year’s Election Day, we can also remember that this was the end of the “War to End All Wars” that wasn’t. I

Today news broke that we lost another in a growing cadre of musicians and poets, Leonard Cohen, on November 7th. Best known for his song, “Hallelujah” (thanks largely to its inclusion in the movie Shrek), Wikipedia says of Cohen:

Leonard Norman Cohen, CC GOQ (21 September 1934 – 7 November 2016)[1] was a Canadian singer, songwriter, poet and novelist. His work explored religion, politics, isolation, sexuality, and personal relationships.[3] Cohen was inducted into both the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame as well as the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He was a Companion of the Order of Canada, the nation’s highest civilian honour. In 2011, Cohen received one of the Prince of Asturias Awards for literature and the ninth Glenn Gould Prize.

Armistice Day (co-opted in 1954) remembered the event at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month of 1918 as the moment when the Allies defeated Germany during World War I.

Wikipedia says of the first Armistice:

The Armistice of 11 November 1918 was an armistice during the First World War between the Allies and Germany – also known as the Armistice of Compiègne after the location in which it was signed – and the agreement that ended the fighting on the Western Front. It went into effect at 11 a.m. Paris time on 11 November 1918 (“the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month”), and marked a victory for the Allies and a complete defeat for Germany, although not formally a surrender. The Germans were responding to the policies proposed by U.S. President Woodrow Wilson in his Fourteen Points of January 1918. The actual terms, largely written by French Marshal and Supreme Commander of the Allied Armies Ferdinand Foch, included the cessation of hostilities, the withdrawal of German troops to behind their own borders, the preservation of infrastructure, the exchange of prisoners, a promise of reparations, the disposition of German warships and submarines, and conditions for prolonging or terminating the armistice. Although the armistice ended the actual fighting, it took six months of negotiations at the Paris Peace Conference to conclude the peace treaty, the Treaty of Versailles.

In this year, 2016, the year the music died, we are on the brink of many changes. We have forgotten so much of our history, but Cohen, born the same year as my mother,  was old enough to bear witness to the ugliness of the second War to End All Wars.

I will listen to his words and remember.

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November 8, 2016: Election Day

When I launched this blog, I originally highlighted a brilliant tip of the hat to Lady Gaga.

This year, with Hillary Clinton so very close to winning her place in the Oval Office and making history, I recall this earlier expression of history. It’s what I think of when I cast my vote, which I did last week during early voting in my state.

Polls are already open in the east. They close at different times during the day, but if you are already in line, STAY THERE. You have a right to vote, no matter when the polls close.

And (as if this is necessary): There is no such thing as online voting. It’s a scam. Don’t fall for it!

See you on the right side of history tomorrow!

#ImWithHer

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September 21: We interrupt this wholesale revision of posts for an important message…

Today, this crossed my social media feed. Not only is it an important message, but time is running out.

The Cassie Times has a timer. Today’s the 48th day before election day. In a little over a month, we will know whether we’ve preserved our democracy or blown it straight to hell.

Your vote matters.

If you aren’t registered, WHY NOT?

If you THINK you’re registered, go check. If you didn’t bother to vote in the primary, you might not have noticed that you’ve dropped off the roll. That’s not okay.

Don’t be a provisional voter. Make your voice heard.

The world’s biggest celebrities explain why it is Important that you vote on November 8!

Visit: http://www.savetheday.vote to find out how you can register to vote.

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June 7: The Fallen of World War II

Now that my current degree is complete, it’s time to go back to this blog. I’ll be moving it shortly to a new home, but for now I’ll keep posting here.

This video crossed my feed yesterday, on the 72nd anniversary of D-Day. I think it’s right and proper to recall all the costs that we paid for “the “War to End All Wars” that wasn’t.

I’ll let the video speak for itself. It has plenty to say, and as they say, a picture’s worth a thousand words.

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January 25: SnOMG2016: Codename Snowzilla (1/22-23/2016)

Occasionally, the videos I post here are mine. I’ve been waiting to use my camera’s interval timer since I acquired the Nikon almost two years ago, but I didn’t have a reason, until Friday.

Feel free to share and enjoy!

Credit where credit is due, thanks.

Blizzard2016 (aka Snowzilla, SnOMG and assorted others), taken in the DC metro area.

Credit: Betsy Marks Delaney / Hawkeswood Productions: www.hawkeswood.com. All rights reserved.

Music: “Don’t Turn Back” by Silent Partner, YouTube Audio Library https://www.youtube.com/audiolibrary/music

Time lapse video shot with my Nikon D5100 over the course of the storm.

Got a slightly late start, had a couple of instances where the battery ran out and I needed to replace it, and had to move the camera about 3/4 of the way through because of moisture outside the window.

The ghost at the left of the frame is me, working on my computer while the camera went off.

Total accumulation here: 19″ as measured by me off my back deck.

Camera settings for Time Lapse photography provided by Michael Schwarz from his Nikon camera page: http://michaeltraining.com/camera-settings/nikon-d5100-camera-settings/

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January 21: Bread and Milk…

This is the one and only repeat video, because I just couldn’t resist. Now with new and improved second link!

Viral video responses to real world events. They’re a thing. And particularly appropriate, given last night’s Alberta Clipper in the DC region. Schools delayed or closed over the equivalent of two inches of snow, because we were too busy preparing for #SnOMG!, the 2016 edition.

Honestly, you’d think people would remember that this is what happens when El Niño is active, but no. Not so much.

So here’s today’s installment, viewed over 14 million times. Accept no substitutions.

Bread and Milk

But wait! There’s more!

Bread and Milk – Part 2

Now go forth and conquer the grocery store. Hurry. Before it’s too late!

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Bowie…

I suspect those of you who are following my blog already know, unless you’re living under a rock, that David Bowie is gone.

I could write volumes about his influence over my life, or I could simply present those pieces that struck me most deeply.

Lazarus

Blackstar

The Stars (Are Out Tonight)

Space Oddity

Ashes to Ashes

Fashion

Under Pressure (Freddie Mercury and Queen)

As the World Falls Down (Labyrinth)

His entire last album is here: YouTube: Blackstar

CNN/Rolling Stone: The story behind David Bowie’s stunning new album

From his YouTube Vevo page:

“‘Lazarus” off David Bowie’s album Blackstar available now on iTunes: http://smarturl.it/blacksta…
Amazon: http://smarturl.it/blacksta…
Spotify: http://smarturl.it/blacksta…
Vinyl: http://smarturl.it/blacksta…
Limited Edition Lithograph & Music Bundles:http://smarturl.it/blacksta…
Limited Edition Clear Vinyl:http://smarturl.it/blacksta…

Follow David Bowie:
http://davidbowie.com
http://facebook.com/davidbowie
http://twitter.com/davidbow…
http://instagram/davidbowie

Peace to everyone.
#imablackstar

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