Thursday, April 26, 2007

Michael Bublé - Call Me Irresponsible

Here's a pretty slick and flashy promo for our Burnaby Boy's new album, which will be released next Tuesday. He's an amazing talent and his story is somewhat astonishing.

In the caffe

"I'll always figure out a way to make it happen."

This might be his epitaph.

For at least fifteen minutes he had been sitting alone. He had an old yellow Sony portable music machine with him, but he hadn't been listening. He was staring out the window. He seemed to be looking at or seeing nothing, except perhaps what was in his head.

Big, square-faced, handsome in a dull, blank kind of way. He was "reasonably" dressed until you looked a little closer and noticed that his pants were dirty and that he was wearing grey work socks with his black brogues. Later, when his "guest" had finally arrived and they were deep in negotiations, he scratched nervously at his ankle under the rolled down sock.

The guest was Ichabod Crane. A reed, a wisp with a beard. And he came equipped - pen, notebook, questions.

Turned out this was an interview of sorts. The man was a framer and he needed work. Maybe they found each other on Craig's List.

The man listed all his skills. And he did this with a vigor and aggression that you couldn't have seen coming when you observed him in his silence.


"If you look out the door and it's raining, chances are I'll be sitting at home watching a movie."

This wasn't reassuring news. Outside, a man had spent much time in perfectionist, obsessive deliberation parking his red and black Bugatti motorcycle. He was wearing matching red and black bike clothes, sleek and shiny and rubbery. When he took off his helmet, he was half-bald. What hair remained was pure white. He was easily in his sixties. Slim, pug-nosed, intense.

Do you remember Michael Mann's 1986 movie, "Manhunter?" It was the first attempt to film Hannibal Lecter. Never as good as Jonathan Demme's great success with "Silence of the Lambs," but still a chilling, scary movie. (It was later reworked as "Red Dragon," with Hopkins and Ed Norton.) Well, an actor named Tom Noonan played the psycho-killer, Frances Dollarhyde, in "Manhunter," and this is exactly what our motorcyclist looked like.

"But I'd love to work for you - inside or outside, it doesn't matter."

Ichabod smiled and wrote in his book.

"I may not be the best framer in the world, but I'll be there at 7 in the morning, and I'll be the last guy to leave."

He was smiling and loud and gregarious and happy. You could almost smell the disaster of his personal life, his eating habits, his furniture.

I Can Work! I can Work!

A rare congratulations to the Campbell Government.

As of next January, mandatory retirement at the age of 65 will go the way of the dodo bird.

Which is a darn good thing for people like me with no money. I will be 65 in December and I would keep right on working whether the government approved or not. I have to.

But it's nice to know that someone has finally said that this age discrimination had to go.

Many thanks, and pass the geritol.

The Best

Jon Stewart's "The Daily Show," seen here in Canada on The Comedy Network
(Mon-Thu, 11pm Westcoast time or whatever we're calling that this week) is the
only broadcast of which I am aware that dares to poke such huge, gaping and
hysterically funny satirical holes in the official fabrics. Whether it is Bush or
McCain or religionists or Democrats or show biz folk or himself, Stewart and his
writers just let it all hang out there. Stewart is a handsome, quirky performer
with unique style that either works for you or it doesn't.

This is a dangerous and subversive and courageous and democratic piece of
work. Mr Stewart is now rich and famous, and he deserves it all.

Nothing lasts forever and I have no idea how Mr. Stewart may re-invent
himself after this run, but it will be fun to watch and find out.

The Trail Gets Hot

Here is the first paragraph of an editorial in this morning's N.Y. Yimes:

"Congressman Rick Renzi, an Arizona Republican, was locked in a close re-election battle last fall when the local United States attorney, Paul Charlton, was investigating him for corruption. The investigation appears to have been slowed before Election Day, Mr. Renzi retained his seat, and Mr. Charlton ended up out of a job — one of eight prosecutors purged by the White House and the Justice Department."

Read the rest here.

It is about corruption at the highest level of the American government.

Great tap dancing by Eleanor, Fred and George

Please note that this is a one-shot, one-take wonder. Astaire was my all-time greatest show biz hero. He had studied every known form of dance, he was tireless in his preparation, and then he went out made it look like was just making it up as he went along.