Panache

“The course of true love never did run smooth,” or so Shakespeare tells us. In fact, I am one for whom the course of any type of love tends to be shot through with a few rapids. In general, love is a tricky thing, because life is more complicated when other people get involved. There are also many unknowns in love; things that seemed certain and solid can suddenly shift into forms more akin to those squiggly lines from Fantasia.

Fairy tales and rom-coms taught me love was something that I would recognize on-sight (more or less). I’d be unable to keep myself from bursting into song (which is suspiciously how I am most of the time), flowers would smell a little sweeter, and so-on. However, on both occasions when I thought I had stumbled upon my “one,” it turns out that, although it quacked like a duck, and waddled like a duck, it was in reality a confused porcupine. It is fitting then, that one of my would-be-someones first shared with me my favorite cinematic version of Cyrano de Bergerac. As summarized on its IMDb page: “The charismatic swordsman-poet helps another woo the woman he loves in this straightforward version of the play.”

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“The Force Will Be With You. Always.”

There was really no other movie I could have written about this week. What can I say about Star Wars? That it’s the movie(s) I most associate with my father? That John Williams’ soaring, celestial score is practically imprinted on my genes? Or perhaps I should admit how, even if I wrote 100 posts on this film, I would still not be able to say all that I want to about that galaxy far, far away…

If I’m being honest, I can’t recall the first time I watched Star Wars with my father. It was just always THERE. Every Christmas, Birthday, and Father’s Day, Dad would inevitably receive a Darth Vader-themed present from my sister and I. He had shelves full of mugs, figures, books, and novelty-items (a lightsaber pen, for example) featuring the Dark Lord. The reason why Star Wars had always been with us, my mom later explained, was because it had always been Dad’s “thing.”

I joke that without Star Wars, I wouldn’t exist. When it debuted in 1977, mom and dad went to the theatre for their first official (solo) date. This went well, so they had another, and another, until finally they had me (there was some other stuff that happened in between). Long after a farm boy, a princess, and a scoundrel first traversed the galaxy, the Force remained strong in my family. And it continues to, even though my father is no longer with us on this particular blue planet. As I near the fourth anniversary of his passing, it only feels right to share my thoughts on Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope. As summarized on its IMDb page: “Luke Skywalker joins forces with a Jedi Knight, a cocky pilot, a Wookiee and two droids to save the galaxy from the Empire’s world-destroying battle-station, while also attempting to rescue Princess Leia from the evil Darth Vader.”

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You Ain’t Heard Nothing Yet (pt.1)

To quote Bing Crosby from White Christmas “Holy cow, I’m really off the ball, aren’t I?” I’m slacking and slipping and everything in between. Who knew that working for a University right before spring would be so hectic? *cough*

Anyway, here’s Wonderwall… a whole assortment of musical munchies:

Lullaby

This song was always one of my favorites from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Right after “Roses of Success,” and the villain song was pretty good too. Oh, and “Me Ol’ Bamboo”! OK, so I love nearly every track on the Sherman Brothers-penned soundtrack (“Posh” is such a gem)… even though the Child Catcher was the scariest thing EVER.

I know so many songs, however, that I confess to having forgotten this one until I heard Pink Martini sing it with the von Trapps (yes, those von Trapps) in concert about two years ago. It has since become one of the most played tracks in my Platypus playlist (it’s a thing, don’t worry about it).

Sisters, Sisters

First, some background: today is the day my sister and I celebrate each other. Robin and I have been through a lot together, including a lot of music and a lot of television shows. For whatever reason, I have a vivid recollection of watching Nick at Night with her, eating Grandma Jeffrey’s amazingly-good and famous burritos, and having lots of fun. One of the shows we watched was The Monkees. In addition to belting out the title song, we also were quite found of singing this one (and practicing the monkey walk in the grocery store. We also did a dance called ‘Strawberry-Kiwi,’ but that’s a story for another time).

This one’s for you, Ro-bear. My forever partner in crime.

*p.s. Fixed the audio again! It’s a learning process…