Saturday Odds & Sods: Short Side Of Nothing

The Revolution A Mural by David Alfaro Siqueiros.

The New Orleans heat wave continues. I’m not sure who’s a bigger bitch, Mother Nature or Climate Change. After reading Jamie O’s piece yesterday, we’ll go with the latter.

The featured image is a mural by the great Mexican artist David Alfaro Siqueiros. That’s why you see lights and what appears to be a fountain. Do people throw coins in that fountain? Should I consult Fountains of Wayne? They’re from Jersey, how the hell would they know? All I have are questions.

This week’s theme song was written in 1992 by David Hidalgo and Louie Perez. That’s right, another number from Kiko. What can I say? It’s their wolvsterpiece.

We have two versions of Short Side Of Nothing for your listening pleasure: the studio original and live in 2006.

Here’s a Los Lobos tune to match the mural:

I made fun of Fountains Of Wayne, so one more song for all the mall rats out there:

Are there still mall rats? Discuss among yourselves.

We begin our second act with an important historical piece from TPM Cafe. The title sums it up quite well.

What The Nazis’ Attacks On Trans People Tell Us About Today is a fantastic piece by Laura Marhoefer about a little commented upon aspect of Nazism. They were professional haters, so none of this is surprising but much of it is news to me. Good job, Dr. Marhoefer.

FYI, the title is the link, and the link is the title or some such shit.

We move from Nazis to Natalia as we visit true crime land.

Documentary Of The Week:  The Curious Case Of Natalia Grace is one of the weirdest things I’ve ever seen. And weird stuff is my jam. It’s a six-part docuseries that poses this question: did an Indiana couple adopt an adult little person posing as a child?

The answer to that question is murky. After two episodes, the answer seems to be yes, but then the filmmakers throw a series of curveballs at the audience. It’s extremely difficult to tell who’s lying and who’s telling the truth. Whatever really happened, it ain’t pretty.

The series suffers from not having a point of view to steer us in the right or even wrong direction. But the material is so damn interesting that it’s worth the slog. It could have, however, been tightened up into 4 or 5 episodes.

Here’s the trailer:

I had a choice in writing about this weird docuseries: write a long expository essay or keep it short and snappy. I chose the latter. See it for yourself.

Grading Time: I give The Curious Case Of Natalia Grace 3 stars and an Adrastos Grade of B. It’s currently streaming on Max. Why they removed HBO from the name is beyond me. The HBO brand screams quality. Oh well, what the hell.

Since most of the action in Natalia Grace takes place in the Hoosier state, the last word of our second act goes to Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers with a song that was originally called Indiana Girl:

We begin our third act with our favorite stolen feature.

Separated At Birth Casting Edition: I wrote about Eliot Ness on Monday. I used the two pictures on the right of the image below to make a point about the Eliot Ness myth. It also made my life easier today.

The real Eliot Ness is surrounded by Kevin Costner and Robert Stack who played him in the movie and teevee versions of The Untouchables.

Neither version was historically accurate, but they were outstanding dramas. I’ve rarely met a Brian DePalma film I didn’t like. As for the teevee series, Walter Winchell’s rat-a-tat-tat narration is to die for as is Nelson Riddle’s theme music:

Your Weekly Oscar: This week, OP gets classical. He could do it all.

Have I told you lately how much I love Oscar Peterson?

Saturday GIF Horse: In this scene from the DePalma film, Kevin Costner glides down a staircase while doing something the real Eliot Ness never did:

Robert DeNiro as Al Capone on the stairs surrounded by gunsels:

Here’s Ashford and Simpson to sing us out of this stairy-n-shooty sequence:

Tweet Of The Week: No further commentary necessary:

I told you he was a louse; make that The Louse.

Next up a new recurring segment that features stuff that doesn’t fit anywhere else. I stole it from my friend The Doctor of Paper.

The Junk Drawer: One of my odder passions is for the 1970’s private eye series, Cannon. I used to watch it with my mom, which is one reason I like it so much. The other is that it holds up pretty darn well. Plus, Frank Cannon is a great character.

One of Cannon’s passions is food. In this picture he hugs a baguette as Martin Sheen watches. Sheen did three episodes of Cannon, but this is the only one with bread fondling.

I wonder if Bill Conrad was wearing loafers in that scene.

Let’s close down this virtual honky tonk with some more music.

Saturday Classic: This week’s Sunday Dozen features the films of Barbara Stanwyck. The number 12 movie on the list is Meet John Doe. Let’s meet another John Doe:

That’s all for this week. The last word goes to Barbara Stanwyck and Gary Cooper in Meet John Doe: