Sunday, July 28, 2013

The Great Charlie Gracie

R&R and Rockabilly Hall of Fame's Charlie Gracie performed at Penn Treaty Park on July 26. His performance was non-stop musical fun for everyone. 
Charlie who was born on May 14, 1936 sang with a clear strong voice and ripped the guitar like a young man. He paid tribute to an old friend, Eddie Cochran in song and also Patsy Kline. The higher highlight of this evening was when he sang "Butterfly", "Fabulous" and performed an incredible version of "Guitar Boogie."  
Young and old found themselves standing and dancing soon as the show got rolling.
A musician in his twenties approached me and asked who was this old dude. He kept saying this man is really good before I could answer him. He exploded with words upon finding out that it was in fact Charlie Gracie. He ran and got his friends over to stage front explaining until nearly running out of breath just who they were watching perform. This young man's moment came after the show when he got his picture taken with Charlie. Such sentiments prevailed through the crowd because they knew the talent and influence Charlie Gracie had on those who followed.
Charlie tells a story of how Paul McCartney idolized him and influenced him and those other boys in that band, the Beatles. It's one thing to read about it, but a whole different thing to hear it in conversation.
It was such a pleasure to meet and talk with Charlie. Heck, it was like watching my own private show too.
Charlie pulled me aside before his performance to thank me for arranging this show. We went to his car were he gave me a two CD collection of his songs and best of all wrote out an autographed picture. We both had a good laugh over what various wording he could use to sign the picture.
We also had a quiet moment of his reminiscence when I said to him, "Charlie you'll understand this." "We're having more fun than most kids our age."
The Su Teears Band was the opening act. They performed a smooth jazz styling of standards that made you want to hear more. This is an excellent band to relax in their groove and even kick off your shoes.
You know how good this night was if you were there. 

story and photos by roman blazic_all rights reserved

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Christmas In July

“It’s Frosty For Snowden”
(Sing to Frosty The Snowman)

Drip, drip, leaky leak, drip, drip, leaky leak, drip, drip, leaky leak leak

It’s frosty for Snowden and his whistle-blowing tale
The government squeals to throw him in jail
Don’t post no bond or bail

So frosty for Snowden who up and flew away
Now the press is rootin’ to blame it on Putin
In a fair and balanced way

There was no extradition in the treaty that they found
Is that how Bolivian’s had their plane forced down

Oh frosty for Snowden in an airport where he sits
But banks can fail, cheat and steal
And no one goes to jail

Drip, drip, leaky leak, drip, drip leaky leak, drip, drip leaky leak leak

Lampoonery based upon actual events in the news
roman blazic_words: all rights reserved

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Episode lll_The Annoying Middle Class


Fishtown is in non-stop culture change mode. Homogenized once meant that the neighborhood was 99 45/100 % white people. That’s where it also ended.
There was a broader base of people’s income levels were everyone understood that there is no shame in earning an honest dollar. The worst was the troublemaker. The rules were straight and simple with lots of room to be flexible.
Fishtown is being inundated with a ton of rules and regulations that foster the better capitalist to cater exclusively to the higher income clientele.
The resulting co-mingling “real Fishtowner’s” and the “new middle class” brings awkward moments of being culturally challenged. (Episode l & ll)
The untold secret is that many of the “new middle-class” began to realize just how annoying they are.
These people put to good use their OCD like drive to organize a self-help group:
Annoying Middle Class Anonymous (AMCA).
Here people can be in a mutually supportive environment to talk about what makes them so annoying.
Let’s listen in.

A: “Hi everyone.” “My name is Andy and I’m annoying.” “I don’t like infused vodka but that’s what my buds drink.” “I even get in the joke when some local doesn’t know what this drinks about.” “So not cool.” “I do other things too.”

S: “I hate my little dog.” “I’m Sean and I annoy myself.” “What do you feed your dog?” “She doesn’t have control of that dog.” “I have my dog trained to sit when I reach the corner.” “It never stops.” “I can’t stop talking this way.” “I hate my cloths too.” “I look Macy.” “Guys try to pick me up when I walk that mutt around the park.”

L: “I got rid of my dog.” (group polite applause) “That was one of my issues also.” “Hi I’m Lyric and I’m still annoying.” “I try to make people look dumb because I can’t get to the point.” “I’m over thinking what I’m saying but not what I want to say.” “I also tell them I’m working on my Master’s.” “Sometimes I don’t know what I like doing when I’m doing it.” “You would think they would get it.”

?: “I’m new here.” (a murmur of welcoming gestures)  “I’m annoying and find you all annoying too.” “That’s why we all came tonight.” “Do you know, I’ll walk home with my finger on speed dial for 911.” “If I don’t do this I might run into someone like me and watch them position their phone because of me.” “They cross the street and then stare at you.” “Do you know how annoying that is?” “This is the safest neighborhood but people like me won’t let it be.” “I know a long-timer who’ll walk for a snack to the gas station two, three in morning.” “It’s like nothing to him.” “People would think I’m nuts if I did that.”

B: “Snacks.” “I can’t let my neighbor’s know that I like Arby’s chicken sandwiches.” “Two for four dollars with the coupon.” “I’m Barry.” “I’m annoying.” “I take my tote with a Thriftway plastic bag.” “I recycle.” “I cover up the Arby’s bag in my tote to help contain the aroma.” “It’s harmless but you know how we can get.”

These are candid thoughts and feelings expressed by and about them. The highest hurdle is when they realize that they didn’t make this neighborhood better, just different.

Lampoonery based upon actual incidents, conversations and composite sketching.
Roman Blazic_all rights reserved

Monday, July 22, 2013

Borrowed Words

Don't ask me what you know is true.
I was standing. You were there.
Two worlds collided.

photo by roman blazic_all rights reserved

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Episode ll_The Annoying Middle Class

The Annoying Middle Class
Episode ll

It was warm and humid at the park while watching a rock band perform.
We had at least a case of left over beer and water on ice when the concert ended. It was time to pack up and go home.
We decided, why not, to give it away. We called out with booming voices, “Free beer.” “Free beer.”
People soon came over and began to grab the beer, some by the bottle and some by the arm full and also the water. Everyone was nice and thankful about it. No one was pushy.
A man with a cane approached and asked if any more beer was left. I steped in and got two bottles for him. This man accepted only one bottle in a polite speaking manner.
This left me holding an extra bottle of beer.
A female voice from behind asked, “What kind of beer is it.” I replied with a smile, “It’s free beer.”
I saw, while replying, that it was a coiffured couple. Their clothing was neat and fitting as if they never once sat down. I’d swear that not one muscle moved around their eyes and forehead.
The woman was poised with a slightly jutted but noticeable chin when speaking. The man stood about three feet away with his hands in his pockets.
The “free beer” answer caused the women to turn to her man with a somewhat stunned and bewildered look. The man’s facial expression and shrugged shoulders seemed as if to say “So what.” “Grab some.”
The women then asked again, “What kind of beer is it.” I gave her the extra beer bottle in my hand and said to her, “Dig in and get another.”
Her arms closely retracted to her body as she again turned to her man. “It’s Kenzinger,” as she spoke with a droll voice and matching body language. The look on the man’s face was priceless.
It appears that they left with just one bottle of beer. Maybe not quiet to their satisfaction.

lampoonery story be roman blazic_all rrights reserved

Be Alert For A Peeping Tom

photo by Roman Blazic_all rights reserved

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

A Little Bit Of Knowledge Can Be Dangerous

I can get use to that.
My girl and I sat down and turned on the TV. She searched for anything and landed on PBS. There was a cultural discussion on Muslim traditional social values. We drifted into the TV.
A panel member declared that a man marries a women half his age.
I got to thinking about what he said. I figured that I should be looking up a thirty year old women. My girl is fit for a guy who's over one-hundred years old. I know a fantastic forty year old women who's...
Anyway, what do I do about my girl?

photo by Roman Blazic_all rights reserved   

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Episode l_America's Newest Reality Show

The Annoying Middle Class

Thank goodness the so-called “gentrification” of Fishtown hasn’t stamped out the humor, vivacity and lampoonery found here with it’s encroaching “political correctness.”
There is so much to be said on the topics of “hipsters” and “newcomers.”  Yes. “Real Fishtowner’s” and born-again Fishtowner’s are fair game too.
I would like to introduce a new topic: “The Annoying Middle Class.”
Case and point: About two weeks ago Montgomery Ave. was blocked off at Gaul St because a truck was being loaded with the old pavement slate from Palmer Cemetery.
This means that traffic along Montgomery Ave and Gaul St had nowhere to go.
Cars turned against traffic along both streets to get out of this mess.
A young woman in a car found herself in this quandary and started her approach to go up Montgomery Ave.
It was at that moment that a 40ish woman with a stroller and baby strapped to her chest (you know the one’s that looks like you have a horrible appendage) bellowed out with indignant exclamation, “That’s a one way street.” “You can’t go up there.”
The young lady in the car was stunned and momentarily speechless. Again that 40ish woman firmly exclaimed, “That’s a one way street.”
I held my steps to see how this would play out.
The young lady in the car replied with mild asperity, “But I got nowhere to go.” The 40ish women looked at me seeking support. She quickly caught on that I though she was nuts. She then in an abrupt manner of speaking turned to the young lady and said, “I guess you got to do what you got to do.”
The young lady safely found her way out of this encounter. The 40ish women turned to me and haughtily said, “I was only joking.” I softly replied, “You shouldn’t interfere like that.”
Yes folks there are plenty of stories to tell about the new annoying middle class.


To see this intersection:
Click enlarge "+" two times. Look for Palmer cemetery to the left or 9 o'clock.
Next drag that to the center of the map and the enlarge "+" two more times.
You will see the flow of traffic and how this traffic quandary was created and wonder why that 40ish annoying women would make a bad situation worst.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013