oh today.

what to do about today? after that, what?

(good news – hank’s back.  filled with the joy and juices of life. he’s ready for action.)

as i look 18 floors into the stratosphere. then 18 floors down at the ‘trash-osphere’, i’m left with questions. they scratch, itch and bite. they annoy. they anger, so agile, dodging answers.

mainly i’m asking, wondering, what next for the occupy movement? after 2 months at wall street, a month or so here in ottawa, i see a lot repeating. same actions as in the past. same tactics. same us v. them approach. so far anyway. i’m now hearing innovative, inspiring talk but…talk is cheap, to use a bad monetary idiom.

that reminds that we, english speakers, have many money-based idioms, demonstrating our obsession with $.  we use a penny for your thoughts, spend some time, save time, buy your way out, i’m banking on you (particularly ugly – it make me think someone’s going to steal my wallet, then charge a buck fifty because she’s not my usual robber), time is money, money talks, if i had a million dollars, i’d buy you a monkey… sorry old barenaked ladies tune.

i’ve moderately enjoyed a smattering of their songs. but, i always felt sorry them, even though they’ve got money to burn, while i’m on the other side of that coin.

why? imagine going through life hooked to that name. the two main ladies, ed robertson and steven page, came up with it at a boring bob dylan “concert” (i can relate, seeing dylan, i was trying very hard not to hear his gummy mumbling, is like watching mould grow). since 1988, they’ve been ‘barenaked ladies.’ not even ‘the’ for a little protection. funny in the fumes of an “only-dylan-can-do-this experience.” at forty with a family, it’s just dumb.

imagine this. small bnl child needs something for show and tell. picks up one of dad’s records, proud, ready to tell her friends all about it. 

“daddy how do you make money? i have to tell that at school” barenaked lady dad, feeling proud, he’s the only paid musician/father around, “well honey, i play guitar and sing.” “who do you play with?” bnl dad, dread building, “i play with my friends. you’ve met them before.” “oh yeah.” child appears to be satisfied, bnl dad breathes again. 


oh no, the child turns back. “but what’s the name of the music you play – that funny name?” childish innocence, parental embarrassment. “we’re-umm-called-hack, cough-bare-talking into his arm-naked ladies?” “oh yeah i remember - barenaked,” child laughs, goes off to school. bnl dad wonders if he should have lied.

later that day, child comes home, dragging the album, crying. terribly sad moment. “what’s wrong?” asks bnl dad. “the teacher wouldn’t let me show this. she gave me this note.” 

“dear (bnl dad), please be certain that your child brings appropriate items for show and tell. unfortunately, this album by some ‘barenaked ladies’ is not appropriate. i ask that you monitor this more closely in the future.”

ok i made it all up. but it’s possible.

they’ve tried the abbreviation, bnl – too close to a sandwich or snl. like kfc is still kentucky fried chicken; they’re still barenaked ladies.

one of the founding ladies even got arrested for cocaine possession in some place called fayetteville, new york.

fayetteville? not the best place to shame the name. i looked it up – about 4000 people and a wicked library (5 star rating!). the highway that goes through fayetteville is more important than the town.

why fayetteville? is there a secret columbia-fayetteville connection? did he go there, unable to choose between cocaine in buffalo or new york city? how did the police know to arrest him? most likely answers to these questions are around but i know more than i want to know. so do you.

anyway, he left the band by “mutual agreement.” meaning he was kicked out for being a ‘dirty’ barenaked lady. meaning he cried in joy all the way home. i think that’s why he did it. he probably reported his suspicious behaviour to the police.

he’s steven page again. he made a surreal, semi-classical disc of tunes by the likes of radiohead and elvis costello. he did a remarkable rendition of leonard cohen’s too-often, badly done, ‘hallelujah’ at the recent memorial to jack layton. he has his name; that cocaine thing was reduced to like a parking violation.

the other guys are still barenaked ladies. i assume that's cool. however, when the eulogy is delivered, the name barenaked ladies will be uttered. every boy under ten will laugh, trying hard not to. the bnl parents will still be slightly embarrassed. and the gravestone guy will have called a couple of times, just to be sure they really want him to engrave, for all time, ‘member of barenaked ladies.’

hank is pawing at me. oh, he’s reminding me to stay on point. i don’t know what the point is. sorry, this did take a severe left turn. but it was fun and trivial. we all need that sometimes.


i was annoyed earlier, but now i’m not. i’m sure whatever annoyed me earlier, will annoy me tomorrow.

see ya, jack and hank.


 





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