MAD Magazine was the reason I learned to read early. It was a huge influence on my sense of humor growing up. It’s why I still believe nothing in life is too sacred to satirize.
Al Feldstein died last Tuesday. He was the editor of
Magazine from 1956-1985 and I confess, in that capacity he totally shaped my world view. I was addicted to
. I was lucky that my uncle ran a small bookstore so I was always flush with the magazine from its very beginnings. I couldn’t get enough of its irreverent, sarcastic, smart-alecky take on the world. There was nothing sacred in its pages. Everything was fair game– from politics to Madison Avenue advertising, from popular culture to Wall Street, MAD took a swipe at it all. Its loads of marginalia also supported close reading.
And it was Al Feldstein who created the environment of out of the box thinking that allowed this creativity to thrive. Born in Brooklyn in 1925, he attended the High School of Music and Art in Manhattan. He received a scholarship to the Art Students League and attended Brooklyn…
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I just read about Harper Lee suing to have the copyright and royalties on “To Kill a Mockingbird” restored to her. She’s 87, dwells in an assisted-living facility, can’t see or hear well, and admits to “memory problems”. Since I don’t know Miz Lee and am not a lawyer, of course I can’t resist stubbornly trying to read between the lines of this news story. That’s my specialty, in case you hadn’t noticed. Continue reading
It was time to shake up my routine. I decided to take a half-day off to do fun, unusual things my wife would also enjoy. We began by arriving for the Grand Opening ceremony of our little town’s Farmers Market. All the newspaper said was “9am Goat Parade” Continue reading
(The best Robin Hood in movies was Errol Flynn’s, performed in 1938.)
I grew up loving stories about Robin Hood. Were these tales based on the exploits of a real outlaw? There might have been a number of Robin Hoods in the original region, including some women. It’s an open question if he really lived or not, but what an inspiring symbol. Continue reading
Obsession likability paranoia.
Kibble-reinforced, bio-degradable op-ed. Continue reading
This is an irritatingly difficult challenge. Since I began blogging, I’ve asserted that you can’t write about yourself with complete accuracy, no matter how hard you try. When we tell our own life stories, we portray ourselves as we imagine we are and have been, and it’s inevitably subject to all our biases, the self-protective and the self-destructive ones. No one is merciless and/or fearless enough to do it. That’s why I’ve always said I’m writing here about a character based on me. Continue reading
I didn’t see any of the past superhero movies based on Marvel Comics characters in theaters. It takes a lot to get me to go to movie theaters so I can listen to strangers eat like cows in order to view a screen larger than my TV. Continue reading
No one suspected that cuddly, lovable Spice was also…
THE HELLHOUND Continue reading
Books and movies aren’t the same thing. That should be obvious on the face of it, but I’ve read hundreds of articles here and in all kinds of publications that miss that central, inescapable point. A film adaptation will never, can never and shouldn’t be evaluated on the basis of being “like the book”. Continue reading
… and for reading.
A very poetic and concise writer, whose name I assume is Trish (http://actionfiguretrish.com/) “liked” my last post. When I went over to her space, she had posted a reminder of an incredibly gracious and meaningful speech I read a long time ago and had forgotten. Continue reading
For a couple of years before we moved from Los Angeles County (pop. gazillions) to Port Townsend, WA (pop. 9k), I read the weekly newspaper online as a way to familiarize myself with Washington’s issues and interests. Continue reading
My 7 Links
I.K. Brunel (1857), and his set of impressive links
This self-congratulatory award nomination was more fun than the usual “tell me secrets and nominate others” routine, because it requires you to mull things over a little in order to make choices based on their criteria. Continue reading
My son wrote me an email in which he suggested I not call myself old, so I thought about some of the many men who produced significant work in my areas of interest when they were at least a decade older than me. Continue reading
No one epitomized stylish more than Fred Astaire. If you say that word, I think of him. And don’t give me the “Ginger Rogers did it backwards and in heels” line. Fred and Hermes Pan made up the routines. Ginger only learned them Continue reading
“There is only one disease – congestion,
and only one cure – circulation”
— Chinese proverb
Here are some blogs I read for body health info. I want to be healthy for whatever time I’m going to live inside this bottle Continue reading
Tragedy Tomorrow, Comedy Tonight!
detail from the Universal Comedy Flow Chart, care of the Ministry of Secret Jokes http://www.ministryofsecretjokes.com/
There’s nothing I like better than a good laugh. It’s better than a good meal. A unique gift of the human species is the ability to observe tragic circumstances and see humor in it. There’s nothing we can’t find funny; funerals, starvation, alcoholism, bad smells and bankruptcy. Continue reading