Established A.D. 2000, March 19. Now in our third calendar year!|
Number 99 (Vol. 3, No. 7). This edition is for the week of February 11--17, 2002.
Waylon Jennings dies at 64.
Also, Bucs Coach Wanted.
UPDATE 2-14-02. Country singer Waylon Jennings, once a member of Buddy Holly's "Crickets", then later as a Top Ten country artist, died Wednesday of complications from diabetes. Please see Will Moriaty's "Rememberance" piece below, and this issue's Mike's Rant, for details.
WANTED. Football coach for a Tampa-based team. Good location, moderate climate, decent pay. Owners are difficult, must have diplomatic skills above and beyond the ordinary. We used to demand experience, but frankly we don't care anymore if you'll just please,
please, PLEASE, PLEASE STAY...and don't go. We've made idiots of ourselves (sob) and we need to regain credibility (sob) so everyone will stop laughing at us. Coff, coff. Ahem. If you have what it takes to take this team to the top (a certain Dungy-ness, let's say), please apply at
One Buc Place, Tampa, Fla.
OVER SHOT HIS MARK.
The Florida State Fair nearly ground to a halt a couple days ago when the "Human Cannonball" over shot his landing bag and crashed some ten feet farther on solid ground. Altho he broke a few bones and sustained a minor head injury, he is expected to make a full recovery. In the true show-biz tradition, the man's family, who run the Human Cannonball
amusement, said "the show must go on" and the brother of the wounded man took his place in the cannon the next day. There were no further incidents. (It is still uncertain what went wrong the first time.)
MORE TALIBAN WORRIES
I believe we're past the deadline for this now, but the FBI issued an unnerving alarm Monday night that it had reliable information that an Afghanistanian terrorist was going to try something BIG Tuesday (yesterday as I write this). They wouldn't elaborate on what, nor specify a city. I'm glad it was a dud, or else they stopped it, because nothing ever happened, thank God.
INTERNET ROMANCE...THE FINAL CHAPTER
Anyone who's been following the PCR for the past year knows I had several male friends involved in "Internet Romances", i.e., women they met online and now were looking at marriage. I related three stories at the time, and so far--one is engaged, one got married already (I went into his a few issues back) and the last is the most extreme: the marriage of my local homeboy Stephen Randall Beasley to Sose Matamua in...AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND!
At left is the wedding invitation envelope that arrived at my door Monday (2-11-02).
Notice the stamps: "Lord of the Rings" stamps from Auckland! That is so cool. Thank you Sose and family for picking those stamps--you just knew I'd flip for it, I'm sure.
The blessed event will occur Saturday, March 9th, 2002. Umm...New Zealand time! Unfortunately, I will be unable to attend in that I don't have a million dollars for the plane fare. But I'm hoping to get pictures.
This is the week the Motion Picture Academy announces their award nominations for best picture, etc. The following list from Mike Smith came in over the last weekend, but due to the timing of the update of PCR, it is being published likely after the award nominations are already announced. My schedule has
dealt me a crushing blow in that there will not be time until Wednesday or Thursday night to update the front page to see how Mike did. I apologize for any inconvenience this causes, but believe me, it can't be helped. That being said, here are Mike's Oscar picks!
|MIKE SMITH'S OSCAR PREDICTIONS|
|Here is my list of hopeful nominees.--Mike|
|BEST ACTOR ||BEST ACTRESS|
|RUSSELL CROWE |
A Beautiful Mind
In The Bedroom
|DENZEL WASHINGTON |
| HALLE BERRY|
|SEAN PENN |
I Am Sam
|TOM WILKINSON |
In The Bedroom
Bridget Jones's Diary
|BILLY BOB THORNTON |
|WILL SMITH/GUY PEARCE |
Ali / Memento
|Both Thornton and Kidman turned in fine performances in multiple films this year, and may split the vote, resulting in NO NOMINATION AT ALL. The same thing affected John Travolta in 1998 when he campaigned for both "A Civil Action" and "Primary Colors." Both Smith and Pearce kept me engaged with their performances, especially Smith. 10 minutes into the film, I did not think I was watching Will Smith AS Muhammad Ali, I thought I was watching Muhammad Ali.|
|BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR||BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS|
The Lord of the Rings
A Beautiful Mind
The Royal Tannenbaums
|HAYDEN CHRISTENSEN/JOE PANTALIANOLife As A House/Memento||CATE BLANCHETT|
27 years after he directed Lilly Tomlin and Ronee Blakely to supporting nods in "Nashville," Robert Altman may have done it again with "Gosford Park." Wouldn't be surprised if the future Darth Vader got a nod. After all.............Obi Wan Kenobi did.|
|BEST DIRECTOR||BEST PICTURE|
A Beautiful Mind
|A BEAUTIFUL MIND|
The Lord of the Rings
|LORD OF THE RINGS: THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING|
Black Hawk Down
|BLACK HAWK DOWN|
|IN THE BEDROOM|
Easily the most original film of the past year, "Memento" is the kind of film that Academy voters enjoy, but usually leave to the writing department to reward, as in the past with such screenplay winners as "Pulp Fiction," "The Usual Subjects" and "Slingblade." Ironically, the Writer's Guild refused to nominate "Memento" for their award as the screenwriter was not a guild member when the screenplay was written.
"I'm a good ol' boy
IN REMEMBERANCE OF WAYLON JENNINGS by William Moriaty
Just last week I was lamenting over the loss of one of Tampa's most colorful historians, Hampton Dunn. It seems that I am writing in rememberance of lost pop culture celebrities at a much more frightening rate. But this is one that I really hate to have to write.
Country singing artist Waylon Jennings passed away Wednesday of this week. Details are still sketchy, but I suspect that he died as a result of diabetes. Several weeks back he had one of his feet amputated as a result of the disease.
Waylon Jennings was my favorite country artist, followed by Johnny Cash and Willie Nelson. There are some current gifted country artists today such as Dwight Yokum, George Strait, and Apopka native John Anderson, but Waylon Jennings, like Cash and Nelson, was rebellious, passionate, and truly country. In my "winter dress" you will often see me decked out in black-- this is not "Will goes Goth", this is a tribute to the real Man In Black, Waylon Jennings.
Jennings career dates back to his being a member of Buddy Holly's "Crickets". Waylon was royally steamed when Holly informed him that "There's only room for three on the plane (out of Mason City, Iowa), and you're not goin'!" In a fit of youthful rage Waylon lashed back "Well I hope you crash!" That plane, carrying Holly, and rock performers the Big Bopper and Richie Valens crashed in a blinding snowstorm on take off on February 2, 1959, killing all on board. It would come out close to forty years later the crushing guilt that Jennings felt every day since then for making that remark (why it always pays to choose your words wisely).
Waylon had a beautifully raspy, bravado voice. He was one of country's most genuine troubadors.His hits charted the tops of the Country billboard for years from the mid sixties to the late eighties. His most notable hits included two duets with Willie Nelson ("Good Hearted Woman" and "Luckenbach, Texas (Back to the Basics of Love)"), and other songs such as "(I'm a) Ramblin' Man" and "Amanda".
Jenning's biggest break came with his down home narrator's role for the CBS Friday night ratings blockbuster "The Dukes of Hazzard." He narrated the series from its debut in February 1979 to its demise in September 1985. In addition he wrote the series theme song ("Theme From the Dukes of Hazzard (Good Ol' Boys)"), and in its record version he playfully adds...
You know my momma loves me
But I can't understand
Why they show my hands
And not my face on T.V."
But he finally appeared in an entire episode in the show's final '84-'85 season. Jennings had a unique lead guitar picking sound mixed with a very simplistic bass line. My three personal favorites are "Clyde", and his incredibly better version of "Ready for the Country" (penned by Neil Young), and stunningly different version of Steely Dan's "Do It Again".
In the mid-eighties he teamed up with Kris Kristopherson, Willie Nelson, and Johnny Cash to form "the Highwaymen". This group of country superstars sang an incredible tune of reincarnation titled "the Highwaymen". In it, Jennings said that although he is buried deep in the ground, he will be around (and around and around...). In my heart you will be Waylon---I will truly miss you, but your contributions are timeless.
Please also see this issue's "Mike's Rant" for more on Waylon Jennings.---N
Give Me That Old Time Religion (as sung to the tune of "Brother Can You Spare A Dime?")
Two weeks ago we told you about the Mayor of Inglis, Florida who approved a Proclamation banning the Devil (Satan, Beelzebub, Lord of the Lake of Fire, Bill Parcells, etc) from entering their town, and the ACLU's just as wacky reaction. Now the inability to determine the appropriate separation of Church and State resurfaces in Virginia where its State senate passed legislation requiring public schools to post signs reading "In God We Trust". The bill's sponsor, Republican Nick Rerras, said the "motto offers a much needed expression of hope in an era of terrorism and weaking moral values." Virginia Democratic Senate leader Richard Saslaw commented that "the moral decline has occured largely in the years since Congress made "In God We Trust" the national motto in 1956. The motto's inclusion onto coins and currency hasn't helped." Can't argue with that-- for that matter how many have killed each other or made the quality of life wretched for a custom that quite frankly trivializes the Lord by emblazing those words on it? Rerras countered that "In God We Trust" is "a patriotic phrase that gives inspiration to the entire nation." Obviously the good Senator, and those like him, can't tell the difference between secular patriotism and a true spiritual bonding, belief, and service to one's Holy Creator. Sadly the God/patriotism connection, when used in a wrong application has led to much death, destruction, and misery throughout human history. The September 11th episode highlights this as Osama Bin Laden gave praises to Allah (God) for the death of 3,000 innocent American lives.
Conversely, to demand that the national motto be removed from government buildings when used on official national emblems is just as insidious as requiring its usage. Love, respect, and fear for the Lord should always be based on free will, not on a mandatory government requirement. Why is there no longer a balanced, moderate discourse on this subject?
Bush Wants To Reduce Drug Use By 25%
On Tuesday February 12, 2002, President Bush set a goal of reducing illegal drug use by 25%. Although I'd love to see it reduced by 100% (which will never happen), a good start would be in the Bush family starting with his niece Noell Bush who illegally obtained a prescription drug from a Tallahassee Walgreens last week. The majority of us would have gone directly to the pokey and not got that State contract job if we would have done this. I also find it amazing that a 24-year-old woman has had seven speeding tickets and five reckless driving violations and has somehow managed to keep her license. Sounds like our penal system's on drugs when it comes to dispensing justice to the privileged class.
Bush Plotting Saddam's Removal
You know, back in September I came out swingin' for Dubya. Once he dusted himself off from the initial shock of the September 11th carnage, I thought he handled that tragic affair in the most incredible manner possible for a U.S. President of any era. I was extremely proud of him. To the credit of his Administration, casualties of American troops in Afghanistan have been minimal, and the Taliban government was handily driven out of that country, a type of feat that no other World Power has ever done in that war-torn nation. But, I am no longer sure where he is leading us in this "War" on terrorism or why. It is impossible to fight an "invisible" enemy, ad infinitum. Is the President's decision to remove Sadam Hussein (now there's an absolute waste of flesh) from his stranglehold over Iraq based on credible, immediate threats to the United States, or is he just finishing off dad's unfinished business? If we view Iraq and Iran with such alarm, then why not attack Pakistan, Libya, Sudan, Yemen, Saudia Arabia, the Phillipines, and any other nation that is harboring those who would do us harm (we may have to attack within our country if it is as rife with terrorists as we are led to believe)? Pakistan already has nukes, and has harbored our enemies. The remaining nations are already known to embrace the political thinking and support of Al-Quaida or those like them (yes, in a poll even 90% of our "friends", the Saudis, think Osama "did the right thing" killing 3,000 "infidels" in the "Great Satan" (or Bill Parcells) U.S. The longer this "War" is going on, the more I'm thinking there's more than meets the eye to what's really going on, and that it will get more messy and deadly with the passing of time.
Florida House Passes School Prayer Bill Again
Surprise, surprise, surprise. Our far right Republican Legislative House has passed, for the third time in less than a year, a school prayer measure. Representative Wilbert "Tee" Holloway would let school districts permit invocations, benedictions or inspirational messages at graduations or other assemblies. Of course, it was overwhelmingly passed by this generation of politicians who are starting to make the "Dixiecrats" of old look like Ted Kennedy by comparison. Maybe I'm off track here, but what on earth is wrong in a secular public function with having a moment of silence, to pray, or not pray for that matter, for whatever and/or whomever you believe in? It is obvious that all of these school prayer attempts are orchestrated to create State-sponsored prayer (here's where I grudgingly come in swinging for the ACLU), which moves us closer to the political/religious mind-set of the Middle East that we vilify so much. Come on-- if you truly believe in God, or Allah, or any deity or deities, you should carry them with you in reverent silence no matter where you go or what the situation. You can "preach" the gospel of your beliefs many times more effectively by simply living it, rather than forcing others to bend to it. Who knows-- maybe someone out there will see that good life that you lead and want to do the same thing out of genuine desire. Our politicians, however, still don't get it...
This week's issue|
La Floridiana by William Moriaty
The 1960's were Florida's "Golden Age" for prime-time viewing with shows such as "Surfside Six", "Flipper", "Gentle Ben", and the "Jackie Gleason Show". The 1970s were a bust with none!
Florida's luck would change for the better with a "Silver Age" infusion through the 1984 debut of "Miami Vice" and the 1985 debut of the "Golden Girls". A little bit of Florida would linger on into the 1990s on to today through some short-lived and infrequent shows.
We will take a look at these shows in the last of our two-part series.
............Click here for more.
This week's issue|
Matt's Rail by Matt Drinnenberg
"Never assume the person you're dealing with has the same capacity for intellectual thought" or "Don't bring a knife to a gun fight."
Here we go again. The Buccaneer Coaching Vacancy Carousel is on the move. And much like a carousel, travels many miles without going anywhere.
............Click here for more.
This Week's Movie Review
The return of the movie review page! Altho I'm very pleased and grateful with the progress of this year's version of the PCR and all its sections, I confess to having a real frustration with getting the movie review page going.
I don't blame any one single individual I want to say before any finger-pointing starts. Despite my frustrations, I was able to dig out a few half/partial/never-published reviews hanging in the hard-drive "closet" I'm clearing out in another effort to jumpstart the series.
........Click here for more.
This week's issue|
Mike's Rant by Michael A. Smith
THE NOMINEES ARE........ANYONE SEEN RAY PERKINS?........LET'S ROLL, REVISITED........A BIG THANK YOU
........STUPIDITY TO THE NORTH........WHAT'S IN A NAME?........MOVING ON
............Click here for more.
We welcome your feedback.|
Nolan here. Last week, I sent Rick Sousa a private email asking him to clarify his Top 10 comics challenge from issue #98. I had assumed he meant a regular comic-book series, but then I had inquiries as to whether it was open to one-shots, graphic novels, daily comic strips and the like.
The following is his reply:
Thanks...Yes, you're right...A series..like a favorite regularly
printed comic book from any era..the free-for-all can come
later (hehe)...Indys or anything goes....like, say for an example, someone put
in the early '60s Giordano Batman series as their fave..that would count as
a good sub-genre, and would be included(?)...where someone else might say
that Miller's "The Dark Knight Returns" would be their fave...One's a one-
shot and one's part of a regular series...It's your call, so you might want
to say "whatever" and just let it go at that...I'll give you my #1 and I'll
get back with you..
#1-Love and Rockets By Los. Bros. Hernandez....
Talk at you later Nolan,
OK, so here's the final tally. Nolan's rules: To avoid a meaningless free-for-all, please limit yourselves this time to comic book SERIES and we'll do one-shots, graphic novels and comic strips some other time (you may make honorable mentions, tho---we're notorious for that). About "Dark Knight" vs other versions of Batman or anything like that,
your call, it's pretty flexible there. JUST PLEASE DON'T FORGET TO INCLUDE COMMENTS!! Muy importante. That's why I'm here.---Nolan
Write to: Letters to the Editor Any emails sent to this address will be assumed intended for publication unless you specifically instruct me not to. I can and do respond privately, if that is your preference. Frequently, it's both ways.---Nolan
"Mike's Rant" is ©2002 by Michael A. Smith "Matt's Rail" is ©2002 by Matt Drinnenberg "La Floridiana" is ©2002 by William Moriaty "The Enlightenment" is ©2002 by Terence Nuzum Thanks again to Richard Sousa for writing in. Add'l thanks to Will Moriaty for his sanity search and piece on Waylon Jennings. All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2002 by Nolan B. Canova
Webpage design and all graphics herein are creations of Nolan B. Canova ©2002; all rights reserved.