The tropics have been busy this week. There are two named storms in the Gulf. Neither is headed our way, but it’s been a wet week. Oh, to be on the dry side of a storm.
It was qualifying week for the 2020 election in the Gret Stet of Louisiana. Senator Double Bill Cassidy gained a name opponent when Democratic Shreveport Mayor Adrian Perkins filed to challenge him. He has his work cut out for him: he’s not well known in South Louisiana. The spineless incumbent remains a heavy favorite.
The most interesting local race is for Orleans Parish District Attorney. Incumbent Leon Cannizzaro is retiring, which makes it a wide-open race. City Council President Jason Williams looked like a very strong candidate until he was indicted on federal tax charges. The funniest moment of qualifying week was when Williams told us not to be distracted by his indictment. Dude, you’re running for DA. You need a better argument than that.
This week’s theme song was written by Stevie Wonder for his smash hit 1973 album Innervisions. It’s about reincarnation or some such shit but I like it for the funky groove.
We have two versions of Higher Ground for your listening pleasure: Stevie’s original and a 1989 cover by Red Hot Chili Peppers.
Glad I was able to funkify your lives today. I took lessons from the Meters:
That George Porter Jr. bass line makes me want to jump…to the break. See you on the other side.
Now that we’ve reached higher ground, it’s time for a song with the refrain “higher and higher, baby.” It’s a Livin’ Thing, it’s a terrible thing to lose:
We begin out second act in earnest with a segment about an unlikely folk heroine.
RBG’S Schooldays: It’s been said before, but I’ll say it again. Ruth Bader Ginsburg is a pioneer. Slate’s Dahlia Lithwick and Molly Olmstead sought out the other women from the class of 1959 at Harvard Law School. They got their stories and shared them with us. Her classmates are almost as interesting as the Notorious RBG.
They also interviewed Justice Ginsburg about her classmates. The whole thing is magical.
I’m not a podcast guy but there’s one of those as well.
We all have fond memories of our schooldays. They’re even rosier given the current scholastic situation. The first song on the Kinks concept album Schoolboys In Disgrace is nostalgic, then things get dark as you can tell from the album cover.
Law school inspires darkness. I’m the guy who wrote the murder mystery set at Tulane Law, after all.
Our next segment tells a tale of class, privilege, wealth, and murder most foul. What’s fouler than the stench of cigarette smoke?
Duked Out: In 1966, tobacco heiress Doris Duke ran over designer Eduardo Tirella outside her Newport, Rhode Island mansion. It was declared an accident, but suspicions linger that Duke got away with murder by paying off the police.
Peter Lance was a young reporter in Newport when the “accident” happened. He’s always been skeptical of the official story. He revisited the case recently and concluded that the irascible billionaire got away with murder most foul. Lance has the details at Vanity Fair.
I bet you’re expecting a murder ballad at this point. I decided to pull a fast one and post a song from the Genesis album, Duke. It has nothing to do with Doris but it’s the last word of our second act:
We begin our third act with our favorite stolen feature.
Separated At Birth: I feel sorry for Robert Kardashian. He struck me as one of the few decent people involved in the OJ case mishigas. He did marry Kris Jenner so perhaps he deserves having his name attached to a reality show that’s too sleazy even for me.
In this casting edition of SAB, we have Kardashian and the man who played him in The People v. OJ Simpson, David Schwimmer. The real Bob is on the right. I guess that’s obvious since Cuba Gooding is nowhere to be found.
It’s time to elevate the tone with some wit and wisdom from the world’s tallest dead economist.
The Weekly Galbraith: This Galbraithian quote is eerily applicable to Robert Kardashian’s place in our memory.
Kardashian initially believed OJ but sat through the trial and realized that his pal was a murderer. Oh well, life is a bitch and then you die. It’s what happens when you live on the:
We’ve gone from ELO to ELP. Holy acronym mania, Batman.
The movie list has the week off, but we’ll try and make up for that with our next segment.
Saturday GIF Horse: After making White Heat the #1 movie on last week’s Edmond O’Brien list, I watched it for the umpteenth time. It’s as perfect as ever. And Cody Jarrett didn’t make me say that.
Here’s a triptych of White Heat GIFs:
I would, however, have shut up when Cody told me to do so. Who the hell wants to end up dead like Big Ed? I’d also rather not blow myself up like Cody. I’d rather be:
Howlin’ Wolf with Clapton and Winwood. It doesn’t get more explosive than that, y’all.
Weekly Vintage Music Video: One-hit wonders have always had a special place in my heart. Why? Beats the hell outta me.
What happened to the Old Bohemians? Guess they moved to Prague.
Edie Brickell married Paul Simon and apparently still plays gigs with her old band. Shouldn’t they be called the New New Bohemians? Beats the hell outta me. That seems to be the phrase of the day. Why? Beats the hell outta me.
Let’s close things out with some more Wonderful music.
Saturday Classic: I received Songs In The Key Of Life as a Christmas present in 1976. It’s wondrous Wonder:
That’s it for this week. The last word goes to Edward Hopper. It was the 138th anniversary of his birth on July 22.