Monday, March 29, 1993

Notes and Stuff

A couple of comments from newsletters past:

Sarah, I enjoyed your article last week on Star Trek. Although I am a fan of all three series, I hope you’ll never find me at a ST convention wearing my Spock ears. I do disagree with some of your observations however.

First, I don’t see Star Trek as science fiction, and I know that isn’t exactly an original assessment. The show has been compared to westerns although I tend to think it’s more like a high school humanities class.

While ST:TNG is an improvement over the original series, its Utopian optimism about a peaceful universe, and the celebration of "all" life, can be a bit silly at times. Your criticism of all the characters of ST:DS9 being the same as ST:TNG may be true but then again all the characters of ST:TNG are just retreads of the original series. (I for one like Beverly better than Pulaski if only to keep track of all the different hair styles and color changes. Nephew Nathan informed me via his Star Trek Fanzine that Gates McFadden does indeed wear a wig on the show. At least hers is better than William Shatner’s…)

Also I think we have to keep in mind the pilot for ST:TNG sucked; the premise being Q putting the members of the Enterprise on trial for all the crimes of humanity. Yuck. ST:DS9’s pilot was much better. What time and where do most of us really live? The show argued in the past and I wouldn’t disagree with that.

The technical question I have about the show is about communication in space. We all know the speed of light is much faster than the speed of sound. Thus wouldn’t it be quicker for the Enterprise to deliver its communications by warping to the location rather than sending it via some sort of radio?

I’m not much into this dream thing much. It’s probably more accurate to describe my nightly thought processes as "nightmarish". But since a new regular feature is sharing our dreams with one and other (something not to be done lightly), could someone please explain the doozy I had last week?

I was holding a large press conference. I was George McGovern. The press was hounding me, bedlam was all around. Everyone wanted me to declare my intentions for the 1996 Presidential race. Nostalgia of ’72 hung heavy everywhere. The questions turned to begging, people pleading me to run. I finally had enough and said, "I’m too old." At that point I woke up. George McGovern?

I caught my first episode of "Beverly Hills 90210" last week. Now I know what the kids are talking about. I’m hooked. Great looking cast, complex social commentary, and effective music add up to a collage that’s a feast for the senses!

As we go to press, the big Ella Fitzgerald gala is being held at our St. Paul Applause. Wish I was there. I’m not a huge Ella fan; her arrangements over the years don’t appeal to me. But the lady can sing. My favorite performance? Her interpretation of the Gershwin’s "Soon". "When I’m with you this whole world will be in tune, let’s make that day come soon." The way her voice caresses the word "soon" is sublime. Happy Birthday Ella.

Monday, March 22, 1993

Dave’s Joke Du Jour: Government officials say there has been a record amount of heroin smuggled into the country this year. The good news is it should be a great year for jazz.

I try not to be a "vis a vis" type of guy, but the way I see it, the issue of mirrors and security cameras isn’t one of effectiveness, but rather privacy.

Just because you have notheing (nay make that very little) to hide, doesn’t mean you like being watched. I don’t like my own eyes staring back at me in a mirror let alone the feeling another pair of beady one’s are beating down on me from some hidden place.

There are a number of people who enter our stores without the intent of shoplifting on their mind. These are the honest few hso believe in Capitalism and will spend their hard earned cash on the entertainment we offer to them. To give these people the perception we are watching them creates an atmosphere of implied mistrust that has to be counter productive to any business.

On the other hand, shoplifting is a major problem and we have to offer some deterrent to those who will seize any window of opportunity to swipe that Steppenwolf cassette.

How do we find a balance between these two diverse forces? I think if we have to fall on one side or the other, it’s better to err on the side of blissful, blind trust. As a consumer I want to shop in a place where I don’t have to worry that my next move will show up on the following evening’s edition of "A Current Affair".

I recently got a call at my state job from an "angry taxpayer" (my favorite type of call). This person had gotten on a mailing list from somebody who got his address from the documents he filed with the Secretary of State.

Never mind one of the major purposes of the Secretary of State’s office is as the official recorder of legal documents, and that almost all the information filed is available to the public. This gentleman kept claiming we had caused a violation of his privacy.

His leap in logic seemed to be a bit far fetched for me. How can disseminating public information be an invasion of privacy? His complaint was based on being fed up with getting so much junk mail. He said it was a waste of his time to have to sort through solicitations. I resisted the urge to tell him about the only place where junk mail isn’t a nuisance is somewhere in Tahiti.

I think he may have seen a recent story on McNeil/Lehrer about how much information which most of us assume is "confidential" can be bought. According to one man who used his computer to access information on people, everything from one’s credit history to one’s medical records is available if you look in the right places. To demonstrate his point, this fellow pulled up how much Dan Quayle spent at Sears one month.

Paranoia might be the clinical diagnosis, but it is a bit frightening that every move you make can be scrutinized by someone, somewhere at some time. And the people watching probably are not the type who will see the humor in practicing one’s stand up comedy act in front of a Super America security camera.

Thursday, March 18, 1993

Out of the Loop

"Bill Monroe once said he got his best thinking done while other people were talking. I always liked that."

Finally given the chance to see the big "BobFest" honoring thirty years of Bob Dylan's music, my favorite performance (not counting the man's himself) was surprisingly, the O'Jays version of "Emotionall-y Yours". It's an often overlooked song that was given a wonderful soulful rendition. Other notables wcrc Lou Reed's "Foot of Pride" (an inspired selection), Neil Young's "Just Like Tom Thumb Blues", and Tom Petty's "License to Kill". Only disappointment was they cut Bob's performance of "Song to Woody".

Last week A1 sent me to a Padgett-Thompson seminar entitled: "How to Create Newsletters People Will Read". There were several ideas presented that will be incorporated into these pages, You might have already noticed some "cosmetic" changes (already more than what Michael Jackson has had done) and will see more in upcoming issues. Meanwhile we still covet your input so if you have ideas on what you think the newsletter should be, please get them to me.

A request was made to include the phone numbers of our two U.S. Senators. Happy to oblige: David Durenburger: 370-3382 Paul Wellstone: 645-0323

What does it mean when Idon't even understand the graffiti spray painted on our walls? Am I totally out of the loop?

I do believe this is the first issue of the newsletter that began with the word, "Jambo". Congratulations to all involved, We also recognize there is a major difference between the words, "salon" and "saloon" and to add an 'b" can distort the entire meaning of a sentence. Then again, words are all alike anyway, just a bunch of letters put together sometimes meaningless taken out of context or spoken (or written) without inflection.

Monday, March 15, 1993

The Other Me

I just had an elderly couple purchase $48.00 in Green Tags. They planned to haul them home on a bus but found the four back grocery bags too cumbersome. So I called them a cab.

To me it was a bit depressing to see someone spend that much on Green Tag records (can anyone possibly have a need for that many scratched/moldy records?) But I guess if we put a smile on just one person's face, if we make this world a better place for just one person, it is worth it. Do I hear employee of the month?

I wasn't going to say anything but now that it was brought up, I feel I have to respond. When Joel was born, our family had fallen upon hard times. It was a difficult decision, but we placed our youngest sibling into a wicker basket and set him afloat down the Nile-all the time praying his would be a fruitful existence.

Which brings to mind another painful memory. It was during my audition for the TV game show, "Cardsharks" (this is true). One of the NBC pageslooked at my application and said, "I know a David Maeda back in Hawaii." It was like being doused in the face with a shoe of ice water; finding out I'm not even an original, just some sort of facsimile, just another face in the crowd,

Monday, March 1, 1993

Power and Greed and Corruptible Seed

Bob’s Quote of the Week: I’m just thankful I can play on stage and people come to see me. Because I couldn’t make it otherwise, I mean if I went out to play on stage and nobody showed up that would be the end of me. I wouldn’t be making records, I’ll tell you that. I only make records because people see me live. As long as they’re coming to see me live, I’ll just make more records."

Star Trek Quote of the Week: "Joy can be many things." Dr. Miranda

Editor’s Note: We are proud to present our first sports column (unless you count Jason’s Super Bowl predictions) and probably our last (this is a retail music newsletter by golly. Enjoy.

They were simpler times. We used to go to the park with a mangled, slightly lopsided baseball (it did make it easier to throw a curve ball) and spend our weekends playing ball. We used a frisbee as first base, a tin can as second base, and one of the "guy’s" jackets as third.

As a kid, (and admittedly I wasn’t much of a kid) I lived and breathed baseball. I memorized the stats, studied the nuances, imitated all the symbolic gestures (to spit like a pro is all in the timing) and above all dreamed of the day of my major league debut. Many kids have imaginary friends but how many have twenty-four of them? (the number of teammates on my imaginary baseball team-we were a bit weak at shortstop).

This topic comes to mind for a couple of reasons. I had a Kirby Puckett baseball card hanging up at my desk at the state (provided some relief after an exasperating phone call). Last week one of the women I work with said her daughter was in a desperate search for a Kirby card, hounding her classmates with escalating trade offers. So I sent it home to young Tasha (and got a sweet thank you note) figuring it was worth more to her than me. Well, another co-worker questioned my generosity, telling me the card would someday be worth some money.

I used to have a fairly impressive baseball card collection and I suppose it is worth some money these days. But I didn’t collect for that (just like record collecting, don’t tell me how much my Sinatra collection may be worth, it’s all in the music man) reason. The cards were another facet to the game I found so fascinating. I loved being able to match a face with the box scores I scoured every morning. The fun facts on the backside of the cards made these heroes seem, well heroic. "In the off season, Alex farms potatoes." "Jim’s favorite soup is stew." And I loved the smell of bubble gum. I have a nephew who collects cards and can tell me how much each card is worth in monetary figures. He doesn’t know much about the players, so in my way of thinking he doesn’t know the "real" value, or what they are worth. Baseball card collecting has become a lucrative business, so unfortunately for most kids that’s all it means. The joy in getting a Brock Davis card comes only in finding how much it can sell for.

I took my nephew to a Timberwolves’ game Friday night. Having been to only one other game (back in the Dome days) I was a bit apprehensive going to a sporting event and being bombarded with so many commercial messages that overwhelm the senses. The Timberwolves are if nothing else, a corporate diversion. But despite the Star Tribune blimp, the Reebock performance team (babes), and the disappointment in losing out on a free Big Mac cause the fighting Wolfies came 1 point shy of a 100 point victory night, I must say I enjoyed the game. The NBA is fan-tastic.

The good news for Wolves’ fans was Christian Laettner was the best player on the floor, followed closely by Doug West. The bad news was the opposition was the Mavericks, kind of like comparing your best with a green tag Air Supply LP.

After the game we spent two hours searching for my car. Damn if all those Target Center ramps don’t look the same. The state of being perpetually lost, lacking a sense of direction, there is almost a comforting feeling in that. There is an energy in trying to find your way home.

Did anyone watch the Grammy’s? I didn’t get the chance what with my busy social calendar. I did get a second hand report. I was told Billy Ray Cyrus has mastered the L7 hair flip, using it to maximum dramatic effect. I also heard Michael Jackson made a great quip about forcing Janet to be Ginger to his Fred.

Did anyone catch Wayne and Garth’s "Rock A Go Go"? The snippets were a bit too brief and how could they not show Dylan’s 78 performance of "I Believe In You"? Top five rock babes sans Susannah Hoffs?! Give me a break.

In response to some of what Mark has recently written here is the vision I have for the year 2000:

David mutters his last word, "Gibsonian" as in not so young Deborah.

The Twin Cities merge into one big city, and change locations to the brand new mega state, "Dakota". Al now owns all the buildings in town finally overcoming the label "real estate neophyte" dubbed by the City Business newspaper.

And I hate to be a Gloomy Gus, but did anyone else notice the prediction Notredamus had about the demise of a country whose symbol is an Eagle, where the first of a chain of events leading to the end is an explosion in the "New" city?

I think it is an excellent idea to alphabetize our stock without categorization. If there is one thing I stand for it is fighting the urge to define people by putting them in a "category". If I ever write my masterpiece I don’t want it labeled as the work of an "American Asian" writer nor do I want it defined as being the work of a short, near sighted man who likes to wear hats. I think it is insulting that we attempt to define styles of music. How can we say the Byrds or the Jayhawks are less country than Steve Earle". What exactly is "Women’s Music"?

I am now known as "Mr. Freeze" cause I’m so darn cool. Please address me as such.