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In response to this recent post, my dad burned me a copy of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony and dropped it in the mail, hoping to cure my cultural illiteracy once and for all.

(My offer to burn him “A Fifth of Beethoven” in return went unaccepted.)

I listened to Ludwig Van in the car on the way to work today. It did not make me want to commit ultraviolence, but it did not particularly uplift my soul, either.

I may give it another try tomorrow … but I have a strong desire to listen to Highway 61 Revisited instead, so I’ll more likely do that.

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Heard “Cat’s In The Cradle” while doing my grocery shopping tonight — and not even the original, but someone’s crappy cover version. Few songs do I loathe more.

I inoculated myself against the plague by murmuring insistently, and rather loudly enough to be heard:

“Dracula comes from Transylvania
Stevie nicks books on kleptomania
Johnny looked out of his bedroom window
And he called to his mum, ‘Fred Titmus!‘ “

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As if to redeem itself, the PA at Giant then rebounded by playing “Eleanor Rigby.”

Were there any other pop songwriters in 1966 (even including my man Ray Davies) capable of writing a line as chilling, prosaic and multilayered as “Father MacKenzie / Wiping the dirt from his hands as he walks from the grave”?

I think not.

Though I was surprised to learn via Wikipedia (which means it could be total crap) that parts of “Eleanor Rigby” allegedly came about in a band brainstorming session, with significant contributions from all four, and the song did not come fully developed from the head of Paul McCartney.

Nice work, Ringo.

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From the Department of Things That Have No Business Enraging Me As Much As They Do: The Reading Phillies are changing their name.

In 10 years living in eastern Pennsylvania, I’ve been to one Reading Phillies game, so I don’t really have any place complaining.

(Reading is the Class AA affiliate of the major-league Phillies, and they play about an hour from my house. I would go there more often if the Class AAA affiliate weren’t here in the Lehigh Valley.)

But I perceive this as just another cutesy way to move merchandise, which angers me no end.

You don’t get a much stronger brand in eastern Pennsylvania than “Phillies” — except maybe “Yuengling,” which is not an option. Why the R-Phils have to separate their name and brand from the parent team is kind of a mystery to me.

I shed a tear for that long-gone moment when a minor-league baseball team stopped being merely a minor-league baseball team and became a “brand.” Nay, a “family experience.”

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So it goes.


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