Friday, July 17, 2009


Time flies like an arrow; fruit flies like a banana. - Groucho Marx

Tempus nudgit. - Eli (hizzownself)

Time flies when you’re having fun - and even when you’re not. - Elisson

* * * * *

Time flies, indeed: Here it is Friday again already, which means it is time for the Friday Random Ten, my weekly compilation of Musical Miscellany as spewed forth from the iPod d’Elisson.

Not a lot of excitement this weekend - thank Gawd. Tomorrow, as part of our congregation’s normal summer routine in which the inmates are encouraged to take over the asylum in order to give the regular staff a rest, I will be the Acting Rabbi for Shabbat morning services. I will try to resist the temptation to sing Adon Olam (our closing hymn) to the tune of “Roast Beef of Old England.” (Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should do it.)

Meanwhile, what’s on the box? Lessee:
  1. I Wanna Be Like You - Big Bad Voodoo Daddy

  2. Golden Shower of Hits - The Circle Jerks

  3. Too Much Exposition - Urinetown - Original Cast

    Officer Lockstock
    Well, hello there. And welcome - to Urinetown! Not the place, of course. The musical. Urinetown “the place” is... well, it’s a place you’ll hear people referring to a lot through the show.

    You hear the news? They carted Old “So and So” off to Urinetown the other day.

    Is that so? What he do?

    Oh, such and such, I hear.

    Well, what do you know. Old “So and So.”

    It’s kind of a mythical place, you understand. A bad place. A place you won’t see until Act Two. And then...? Well, let’s just say it’s filled with symbolism and things like that. But Urinetown “the musical,” well, here we are. Welcome. It takes place in a town like any town... that you might find in a musical. This here’s the first setting for the show. As the sign says, it’s a “public amenity,” meaning public toilet. These people have been waiting for hours to get in. It’s the only amenity they can afford to get into.

    Little Sally
    Say, Officer Lockstock, is this where you tell the audience about the water shortage?

    What’s that, Little Sally?

    Little Sally
    You know, the water shortage. The hard times. The drought. A shortage so awful that private toilets eventually become unthinkable. A premise so absurd that...

    Whoa, there, Little Sally. Not all at once. They’ll hear more about the water shortage in the next scene.

    Little Sally
    Oh, I guess you don’t want to overload them with too much exposition, huh.

    Everything in its time, Little Sally. You’re too young to understand it now, but nothing can kill a show like too much exposition.

    Little Sally
    How about bad subject matter?


    Little Sally
    Or a bad title, even? That could kill a show pretty good.

    Well, Little Sally, suffice it to say that in Urinetown (the musical) everyone has to use public bathrooms in order to take care of their private business. That’s the central conceit of the show!

    Better hope your pennies
    Add up to the fee -
    We can’t have you peeing
    For free
    If you do, we’ll catch you
    We, we never fail!
    And we never bother with jail

    You’ll get Urinetown!
    Off you’ll go to Urinetown!
    Away with you to Urinetown!

    You won’t need bail

    Later on you’ll learn that these “public bathrooms” are controlled by a private company. They keep admission high, generally, so if you’re down on your luck you have to come to a place like this - one of the poorest, filthiest urinals in town.

    Little Sally
    And you can’t just go in the bushes either, there’s laws against it.

    That’s right, Little Sally. Harsh laws, too. That’s why Little Sally here’s counting her pennies. Isn’t that so, Little Sally?

    Little Sally
    I’m very close, Officer. Only a few pennies away.

    Aren’t we all, Little Sally. Aren’t we all.

    (to audience)
    Well, we’ve talked on long enough, I imagine. Enjoy the show. And welcome - to Urinetown (the musical)!

  4. Who Stole My Monkey? - Boozoo Chavis and the Magic Sounds

  5. Inca Roads - Frank Zappa

  6. Barnyard Story - Procol Harum

  7. In Blue Hawaii - Brian Wilson

  8. Children’s Song #6 - Chick Corea and Béla Fleck

  9. Lost in the Flood - Bruce Springsteen

  10. Les Jours Tristes (vocal) - Yann Tiersen

It’s Friday. What are you listening to?

Update: “Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should do it.” But sometimes you’ll end up doing it anyway.

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