Wednesday, March 15, 2017

RHFactors 2017 Digest #2

Time once again to gather a collection of things that have happened over the last week or so and share them with y'all. 

Let's start off with my opinion of a few movies that I've seen recently. 

I would describe Before I Fall as Mean Girls meets Groundhog Day. A young girl who is part of the "popular crowd" learns the error of her ways by reliving the day before her death over and over again. Not a bad movie but somewhat predictable. Not very many empathetic characters and some plot holes. I'd say this one is a rental. 

Get Out is a bizarre horror movie filled with social commentary and some comedy. Its written and directed by Jordan Peele, of the comedy duo, Key and Peele. The plot begins when a white rich girl takes her black boyfriend to her family's country house to meet her parents for the first time. 

Things start out on a very strange tone and get weirder and even stranger as they go along. The middle of the picture has a very "Rosemary's Baby" feel to it. The 3rd act plot twist takes the movie in the direction of "The Stepford Wives"with a little bit of "Frankenstein" mixed in. 

The best way describe this film is that it would fit very well as a double feature with the movie "You're Next." If you are a horror film fan, I'd go see this one. 

Logan: The third film was probably my favorite of the 3. Although going into the theater I was not the least bit interested in seeing it. I'm not a big X-Men movie fan. I've seen them all (except for the X-Men Apocalypse) but it's Paula who is the real fan. Initially, I was there for the popcorn. 

This is the first X-Men film that's rated R. It's apparent from the first moments of the exclusive trailer attached to this film that this was going to be a "grown-up" super hero movie. I won't give away any spoilers about the trailer but it's very funny and cutting edge. 

Set in a post-mutant era of the year 2029 the film starts Logan starts with the title character doing what he has to do in order to take care of Professor X (played wonderfully by Patrick Stewart) who has a deteriorating brain disease. 

The Wolverine is also in poor health for reasons that are essential to the plot so I won't give it away here. This is by far the most violent and bloody X-men film so far. At first it seems really strange to hear the super heroes using explicit language. But you kinda get used to it because it goes with the spirit of the film.  

As it turns out there are more mutants around than anyone ever realized. Logan very reluctantly gets pulled into being responsible for protecting one very special little girl. 

It is no secret to anyone who has an interest in this movie that this is supposed to be the last time both Hugh Jackman and Stewart will be playing their respective characters. The movie confirms that fact. The final scene in the movie puts a real very sentimental exclamation point on it as well.  

It seems to me that the way last year's Deadpool film resonated with adult audiences, has sparked an idea within the DC Comics cinematic universe. Logan's attitude and direction tells me that DC has decided to go into an aspect of story telling (more mature themes, attitudes, and story lines) that super hero movie fans want but Marvel/Disney will, most likely, never delve into. 

Its not for little kids or even younger teens but if you are a X-Men fan, Logan is a do-not-miss movie. See it in the theater you'll be glad you did. 

A Pair Of Parodies
When I was growing up, songs on the radio used to make you laugh. Not in a "that song is so bad" way. The songs were funny on purpose. The types of comedy songs fell into 2 categories. 

Original comedy songs in the 70s and 80s included those by artists like:  Ray Stevens, Cheech and Chong, Rick Dees, Steve Martin, Louden Wainwright III, Buckner & Garcia and Meri Wilson, to name a few. 

The other category of comedy songs are known as "Parodies". These are well known songs rewritten with funny lyrics. The artists best known for scoring hits with parodies on the pop charts during the 60s and throughout the 80s were Allan Sherman, and Weird Al Yankovich, respectively.   

Weird Al continues to be popular to this day. After more than 40 years later he is still touring with a magnificent show filled mostly with parodies of pop songs. 

But it is Allan Sherman, who had #2 hit in 1963 with, Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah, a parody set to the music of the classical song, Ponchielli's Dance of The Hours, who was my influence. 

When it comes to my sense of humor, I cut my teeth on Sherman's album, "My Son, The Nut." For most of my life I have been writing parodies of songs on my own. I have written them for events at church, the amusement of my co-workers, my family, and even for my wife.

Over the last month I have had the opportunity to write and perform two parodies. 

One of them I actually got to do at a Karaoke night at the Mexican restaurant not a mile from my house. It's not a perfect performance but here's a link to  the video I posted on my You Tube Chanel. Twitter Song 

The other parody was created in an effort to win a prize from a podcast. To make a long story short (can, I do that?) the BLT Lunch Break podcast was giving away some prize packages of Moonpies. To win you had to do something creative to show why you should be chosen. My submission to the contest is written to the tune of the theme from the old TV western series, Rawhide. Click on this link and you see me playing the ukulele and singing my latest parody, Moon Pie

I have yet to find out if I've won anything from the BLT podcast but at least they got my creative juices flowing. 

I really like writing parodies. I think they are a very witty means of satire. If I do any more in the future I'll be sure to share them with you. 

Memorable Monday
This past Monday, I gave my wife a ride to work. We had left her car in her office parking lot on Friday night. Our plan was to pick it up on our trip into Bowling Green over the weekend. But we never ventured in. So I took her to work. 

I didn't mind taking her. It gave me the opportunity to do some things that can only be done in the mornings. These days when I go into "town" I don't get there much earlier than noon. 

First thing I did was go to Chik-Fil-A for some breakfast. I love their chicken, egg and cheese bagel sandwich. I also picked up a gallon of diet lemonade for Paula. She loves the stuff. 

Next, it was a stop at the Commonwealth Broadcasting studios on Campbell Lane. I wanted to check in with one of their morning hosts, Mike Shannon. 

I used to listen to his show while I was on the road during the days I was a driver back in 2015. I called in to win contests all the time. I used to have to stop by the station to pick up the prizes and hangout with Mike for a while. 

In the year since I left my job, I've traded listening to local stations on the radio in the morning for watching Good Morning America on TV. 

I checked in with Mike and found out that he's busier than ever in the mornings. I got him to agree to help me out with a project I'm planning for the future too. 

Next, I was off to see another of my radio buddies. I worked with Tony Rose at a local radio station almost 18 years ago when I first moved to Kentucky. I've been out of the radio biz since August of 2000 but Tony's career has grown exponentially. 

He is the driving force (no pun intended) behind the annual Stuff  The Bus charity drive which collects tons and tons of school supplies for needy Warren County students each and every year. 

He is also the PA announcer for the Western Kentucky University home basketball games. Those are just a couple of the many things he does throughout the community. 

His main gig is as the morning show host for station WDNS aka D93, which can be heard at 93.3 on your FM radio, online or through the smart phone app. 

I parked next to the D93 studios and walked up to the 2nd floor where the broadcast studio is located. Even though I came by unannounced he was glad to see me and invited me in to hang out. 
In between his time on the air, we caught up with each other. I asked him for advice about a charity project I'm wanting to pursue. We also talked about his recent trip to Walt Disney World earlier this year. He shared a very touching story about a moment with his daughter that really sold him on Disney magic. 

After leaving the radio station I took care of some personal errands and headed home.

Later in the day, I left for Nashville. For the 2nd time this season I went solo to a Predators hockey game. This time they were playing the Winnipeg Jets.

I arrived at Bridgestone Arena about 5:45. I parked in the same garage as last time, except this time I had to pay to park because there wasn't any handicapped spots left. 

I entered the arena through the door inside the parking garage. I took the elevator down to the 1st floor and entered the concourse right outside sections 119 & 120. 

Found my seat in Section 106. It was a handicapped seat at the top of the section. It had plenty of room to stretch out my legs which was a good thing. As I sat down I realized that they were celebrating St. Patrick's day at the arena. The ice was bathed in green light. 

The Predators warmed up in green jerseys. 

The game was another good one. The Predators fell behind 2-0 in the first period. At the end of the 2nd they trailed 4-3. Five minutes into the final period the game was tied at 4. That's how regulation play ended. About 2 1/2 minutes into the 5 minute overtime, James Neal scored a power play goal to give the Preds the win. It was the 2nd overtime win I'd seen this season. 

I got home about 11:30 and was very tired, having been up since 5:30 that morning. 

But after catching up with my radio buddies and enjoying some terrific NHL action in Music City USA I was glad to have had such a memorable Monday. Especially since it happened on the 18th anniversary of the day I arrived in Kentucky to start a new life with Paula.

And there you have RHFactors Digest #2 for 2017. Hope you enjoyed it. Thanks for coming by. I'll see you next time.   

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