Monday, July 27, 1992


Feeling overwhelmed by too much news? Bombarded with too many pertinent images? Relax- next week there will be no newsletter. One week from today the editor hopes to be enjoying himself in the great Northwest, soaking in the ambience of yet another indoor stadium watching those feisty Seattle Mariners battle the odds. For those subscribers who feel tis will make you lose out on your account, don't worry you will be credited and will receive the bonus holiday issue in the fall. For those who can't seem to get enough information about David, a full trip story will appear upon his return.


News of the new Cheapo location in yet another suburb brings rise to a few fears. While it is good news we now will cover three different counties (Ramsey, Hennepin, and Anoka for those of you scoring at home) the question is "What is life like out there in suburban Minnesota?" As a new member of suburbia, let me put to rest some of the rumors you might have heard.

1) There is indoor plumbing and fluoridation in the drinking water.
2) Not all the tennagers listen strictly to heavy metal.
3) Most roads are now paved.
4) Although it might seem otherwise, the average family isn't comprised of a mother, father, two kids and a dog named Spunky.
5) Some of the children at one time might have heard the term "record album."


Last week MTV requested from the Secretary of State's office 5,000 voter registration cards. Presumeably this is in conjunction with their campaign to get the youth of America interested in changing the system from within. Part of my job at the office used to be sorting through the voter registration cards returned to us and sending them on to the county recorder offices throughout the state. The card itself is fairly simple to follow- you have to give your full legal name, address, birth date, and signature. The amount of cards I saw incorrectly filled out made me wonder if our system doesn't need some serious examination. If you cannot fill out the above information correctly should you be allowed to vote? Do we want people who can't figure out the most basic information about themselves deciding the fate of the country? Granted, the foundation of this country was set up so everyone is supposed to have a say in their government but do we want someone who knows more about Bon Jovi than George Bush electing the next President? (gee Mervin, which lever do I pull?)

Monday, July 20, 1992

Five Songs Dave Hopes Bob Will perform on His Five Night Stand

1) Abandoned Love- He performed this in 1976 in New York before it was ever officially released and got a great response which is probably why he hasn't performed it since and why if it was up to him it wouldn't have seen the light of day. Inspired verse, "Something's telling me, I love you but you're strange."

2) Never Say Goodbye- From Planet Waves the great Dylan song never performed live. His performance on vinyl is chilling, to hear it live would be a treat. Inspired verse, "You're beautiful beyond words, more beautiful to me, you could make me cry, never say goodbye."

3) Blind Willie McTell- This is another song Dylan never planned to release in a perverse decision (just how good would have Infidels been with the inclusion of this song?) Inspired verse, "Power, greed, and corruptible seed seem to be all that there is..."

4) Where Are You Tonight?- The entire Street Legal LP has sadly been overlooked by fans, critics and Bob himself (as far as live performances). This song is as close to recording a nervous breakdown as one can get. Inspired verse, "I can't believe it, I can't believe I'm alive but without you it doesn't feel right..."

5) Visions of Johanna- This is one of his "big" songs from the 60's he hasn't performed on his Never Ending Tour. The version included on Biograph is possibly the finest live performance ver recroded by anyoen at any time. It's ethereal man. Inspired verse, "Little boy lost, he takes himself so seriously..."

Monday, July 6, 1992

Of Beauty, Beasts, and Clowns

If most of us agree Disney movies are an accurate reflection of society, I have to wonder what their latest animated feature, “The Beauty and the Beast,” tells us about ourselves.

The movie garnered almost universal acclaim, even being honored with a "Best Picture" nomination at this year's Academy Awards. Much of the praise was deserved; the animation was wonderful, the music hummable and the story likable- to a degree. My only gripe was with the ending which betrayed the message of the rest of the movie.

The moral of the "Beauty and the Beast" was beauty comes from within, outward appearances don't account for what is truly beautiful. The movie mostly succeeded in delivering its message in a poignant way. (Personal aside: I saw the movie after enduring a relationship which blossomed over the phone but disintegrated when we met and actually saw one and other. Just one more time, life imitates art.) Why then did the Beast have to be transformed into a “handsome” prince at the end? Didn’t that distort the message into something like “What’s inside is important but it doesn’t hurt to be good looking too?” (Although my niece was one of many to point out the Beast was far cuter than the vain prince at the end.)

We in the retail business can probably relate. We all know often times the way. the product looks is more important than the content itself. Which also brings to mind the recent series of "news" stories which plotted the numerous clown sightings throughout the northern suburbs. The way the sightings were reported bordered on paranoia which played on the fears of parents concerned for their children's safety {this occurred around the time of the disappearance of Corrine Erstad) and members of the professional clown union. No fake clown was arrested, none was charged with any crime other than dressing silly enough to gain attention and impersonating "real"
clowns giving that group a bad name. To add to the surreal nature of the story, at the same time "Shakes the Clown" played at the Uptown theatre, (as reported in this newsletter).

The hysteria raised the question -does any kid find clowns to be the least bit amusing? Most I know are suspicious of not being able to see behind the mask. It’s not until we are mature and wise do we realize the value of not being able to see what is really there. We all saw the Rodney King video tape. We were told what we saw wasn’t what really happened. The chaos that followed was caused by those who lacked the depth to see beneath the surface. Beauty being only skin deep.

The writer of an unpublished novel once wrote, "Sometimes a vision problem can’t be solved with a new pair of glasses. Sometimes it’s a matter of knowing how and when to look at things.” That same writer might now think differently. Maybe it is time for us to get a collective eye exam with a new prescription. The focus grows fuzzier and fuzzier. We are in the midst of a Presidential campaign (the ultimate beauty pageant) and we seem to think with the Disney philosophy, maybe if we close our eyes, things will work out. Maybe our choices can transform into something aesthetically pleasing. In the end, that seems good enough for us.