20 January, 2011

Bright Copper Kettles

red shoes: for whenever one wants to feel their best...
1.  Red shoes

Let me tell you something: I have three pairs in my closet right now. Three...nope. Actually four. Four! --because I BOUGHT A NEW PAIR TODAY. So. There. If I hadn’t lost the sweet little Mary Jane crocs the night I sang at Sheldon Harnick’s lifetime achievement award thingy whilst running emergency Fiddler lines with Harvey Fierstein, I would have FIVE.

Red shoes rock my world. They are happiness and whimsy and light, and I have gotten into all sorts of trouble both in and with them.

An incident with a red shoe, is in fact the very first thing I ever wrote about on this site (so we have red shoes to thank.)

There is a lot of pop culture mythology about red shoes as well— and not just of the Hans Christian Andersen variety. Apparently a woman wearing red high heels indicates that she is not wearing underwear. Apparently…. 

2. Blog-stalking

Well, now: how 21st century of me. I mean, how else are you supposed to know everything about someone before you pretend not to..?

3. Badcrimedrama

This is self-evident really. Look: who doesn’t secretly feel a swish of glee when you "have" to stay home binging on Law & Order re-runs. Who hasn’t said things like “Ooo! Matlock!’or “This episode is sooo obvious, they totally did the exact same thing on the Murder, She Wrote / Magnum PI crossover episode of  in ‘83. Please. Everybody knows that. Everybody.”

4. Classic Correspondence

One word: sexy. I am certain I have mentioned my love of a good letter before, but good God. Someone selected the paper. The pen. Labored over their penmanship. The envelope selection. Someone chose that stamp and licked it. Their scent is all over it, it is soaked in their emotions, their essence. Someone’s thought moved from their brain through their arms into their fingers and onto the page! It is visceral and palpable and right there before you, reeking of that electrical experience that happens in a flash and lasts an eternity. It traveled across time and space to reach your hands in this very moment.

5. The West Wing Song

Someone once asked me in an interview if I had any "strange or unusual" talents that nobody knew about? 

     Yep I most certainly do.
I'm not the least bit ashamed to tell you that I write amazing lyrics to television theme songs that don't have lyrics.
     The pseudo-80s rock version of Alias.
     The Phillip Glass-esque but possibly just vocalized theremin version of Lost.
     But then there is The West Wing Song. And that, my friends, is special. The West Wing Song is a thing of great great beauty, developed over many months

So… a little embarrassing— I admit that.
I’ll come clean.
Yet, comrades I am telling you: my made up theme song pseudo-lyrics are A.MA.ZING.
They are clever and well-crafted and performed in full voice at 100.

I will give credit where it is due: It all began with The West Wing Song in Glasgow, sitting across the sofa from JNF (when we were busy being 19 but living like we were 70). It was a collaborative effort, really, a true labor of love.

To clarify: in college JNF and I were like that elderly couple that would “have” to go home early because “CSI was on.” Or, “GAAAH we'd love to come to your crazy blow-up college all-nighter but we have a box set to finish.”
It was a little sad I suppose, but it saved us a fortune and actually… (And FYI: when I give you party, I give you some party— you just only get the party from me about twice a year…)

Anyway! JNF and I watched all 6 seasons of The West Wing from start to finish (at the time there were only 6 to watch) and over time, together, we developed The West Wing Song.
The one of such glory.
     And beauty.
     And outright LORE.
With harmonies.
And different versions for each season. (The best version of which is Season 4-- with appropriate apologies to Molina, McCormack, Channing, and Smits-- Seasons 5-7 got somewhat "squishy")
…That is right. That is correct. You didn’t read a typo: The West Wing Song has a capital “S” because dammit it earned a capital letter.

Basically: It is famous. People KNOW it. I believe I was once introduced to someone and they replied “Ah! Al Silber— lyricist of The West Wing Song” and I cooly nodded and was outwardly very nonchalant but inside? Inside I was doing cartwheels, because frankly it was the most famous I had ever felt. Furthermore, dammit, the song is something so special someone should call the governor.

[*pause for possible-to-probable hyperbole*]

Is The WWS essentially the names of the actors sung in alphabetical order shoved into the instrumental theme tune?

Have I sung (with a little help from a glass of whiskey) The West Wing Song to people who have been on The West Wing?
--You betcha.

Have I gone on to collaborate on theme songs to Alias, Lost, and one of my favorites, Star Trek: The Next Generation?
--Hell yeah.

But The West Wing Song is the original and best and with very little encouragement… I will sing it for you too...

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