It's..... The happiest blog on earth

Friday, December 21

I love the image they've come up with for re-releases of the classic Route 66 TV series. Amazon Prime is now showing all episodes for free -- and last night I saw one that I'd never seen before.

Its title? "Shoulder the Sky, My Lad."

And towards the end, Buz Murdoch gives another incredible speech...

10:41 AM

Thursday, November 24

In his first novel, Look Homeward Angel, 29-year-old Thomas Wolfe remembered a turn-of-the-century Thanksgiving from his boyhood in Asheville, North Carolina. In his nostalgic fictionalized memoir, Wolfe calls himself young Eugene -- the toddler son of a couple named Eliza and a wildly prodigal stone-cutter named Gant.

Seated before a roast or a fowl, Gant began a heavy clangor on his steel and carving knife, distributing thereafter Gargantuan portions to each plate. Eugene feasted from a high chair by his father's side, filled his distending belly until it was drum-tight, and was permitted to stop eating by his watchful sire only when his stomach was impregnable to the heavy prod of Gant's big finger.

"There's a soft place there," he would roar, and he would cover the scoured plate of his infant son with another heavy slab of beef. That their machinery withstood this hammer-handed treatment was a tribute to their vitality and Eliza's cookery.

Click for more memories from Thomas Wolfe's Thanksgiving

10:45 AM

Sunday, January 3

Elvis Presley's song from 50 years ago still gives me goosebumps...

It's called "Harum Holiday," but it's really about wanderlust -- that urge to get out of town and see the wide world. And amazingly, in this movie Elvis ends up going to Iraq!

Click here to read about Elvis's adventures in Iraq in "Harum Scarum"

Saturday, November 14

Route 66 -- the TV show, the highway, the legend, and the dream. Everyone knows I'm fascinated with "life on the road", and today I learned something wonderful.

That the theme to the Route 66 TV show has lyrics!

Click here for the lyrics (and the story behind them)

Saturday, January 24

I love The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. And I'm fascinated by this song from its soundtrack. Its title is "Step Out," but the lyrics are a little darker. I could've sworn they were singing "House on fire. Leave it all behind you..."

So I launched a quest to learn what the real lyrics are...

Click here for the haunting lyrics to "Step Out"

Friday, June 8

I discovered there's a "last episode" of Route 66. Tod gets married -- his bride is played by Barbara Eden -- but in the last scene, her scheming relatives immediately have him murdered in order to claim his inheritance. The episode actually ends with them throwing his body off a high bridge, while his bride weeps.

It turns out that's just part one of a two-part episode...

Click here for the rest of the story, Linc's farewell speech, and how one actor remembers the show 45 years later

Wednesday, February 22

I was walking around a beach town when I suddenly remembered the movie "Summer of '42." (A teenaged boy in a summer resort town has a crush on a woman whose husband is serving in the war...) Remembering the movie, I felt like I had to know: was the movie really based on a true story?

It turns out the answer is yes, according to Wikipedia. And there's two more big surprises...

Click here for the rest of the story

Saturday, January 21

My girlfriend likes The Monkees. So for her birthday, I'd made her a "mix tape" of 26 of their best love songs. And "As We Go Along" was my favorite. (It was co-written by Carol King!)

You can listen to the song below while watching a pretty video showing a field of flowers.

Click the link below for the lyrics.

And if you're a hard-core Monkees fan, I'll also tell you which 26 love songs I picked!

7:25 PM

Monday, January 2

Wednesday, November 23

This is getting interesting!

It looks like on Black Friday, there's going to be a three-way price war between the Kindle, the Nook, and the iPad!

8:05 PM

Monday, November 21

I wrote my first ebook!!!

It's a fun (and funny) short "Thanksgiving mystery" about four turkeys awaiting the farmer's axe -- one of which has a plan for escaping!

There's 12 cartoon-ish illustrations -- and the whole thing is written entirely in rhyme!

"For Thanksgiving, try this game / Find the guilty turkey's name!"

9:03 PM

Saturday, October 22

Okay, here's something I never, ever thought I'd hear. Lounge act "Richard Cheese" does a snazzy, jazzy cover version of...

The SpongeBob SquarePants theme.

11:30 AM

Monday, September 26

I absolutely loved the opening "season premiere" song on Community.

Click this link for lyrics and trivia.

11:03 AM

Friday, July 15

I've become obsessed with the great music that Ben Folds wrote for "Over the Hedge." William Shatner was on his (new!) version of "Rocking the Suburbs" - and there's a gentle ballad called "Still" that's really beautiful.

I love the sweet (and satirical) '60s euphoria he sneaks into songs like "(I've Always Got My) Family of Me" and even a cover of The Clash's "Lost in the Supermarket" . The melody itself is almost a commentary on middle-class suburban life.

The perfect example is my favorite song from the movie, "Heist".

3:28 PM

Saturday, July 9

Ever since I was a teenager watching Three's Company, I've been tantalized by this line from the opening credits.

"Based on the British series A Man About the House."

Today I realized I could finally just watch the original British version of Three's Company online!

"A fellow movin' in with two birds...? I'm not having it!"

Click here for video of the British "Three's Company

The opening credits are absolutely terrible.

Saturday, June 11

Yes, it's the cast of "The Office" re-creating George Seurat's painting, "Sunday in the Park".

Click here for a larger image, the back story, and a side-by-side comparison with the original painting.

9:25 AM

Sunday, April 10

Here's an inspiring story. A part-time cameraman for the news (and commercials) at a local TV station in Texas was hired in the 1970s to start filming NCAA football games. Eventually he was filming NFL games and even part of the Olympics in Mexico City. But Steve Rash had a dream. And he spent the next five years raising money to make it come true.

Click the image for the rest of the story...

9:47 AM

Friday, March 11

It's finally happened!

Charlie Sheen's Two and Half Men co-star Jon Cryer has finally broken his silence and commented on what Sheen has been saying...

Also: What Charlie Sheen says about his upcoming Kindle e-book

Later Cryer told David Letterman seriously that "It's as much a mystery to me as to everyone, I think."

11:08 PM

Thursday, February 10

Edgar Allan Poe described walking to a tomb in a brilliant but forgotten poem called "Ulalume". ("Perhaps befitting the gothic poet, Ulalume has a secret history," writes Moe Zilla). After his death, Poe's literary executor deleted the last stanza -- though the poem's even spookier without it.

And somehow, YouTube has a video of the poem being recited by Nico of The Velvet Underground.

7:38 PM

Sunday, November 28

This is one of the most beautiful advertisements I've ever seen...

And yes, that is Animal House...

Click here for the full story

Wednesday, October 13

There's a great speech about the economy towards the end of The Girl with The Dragon Tattoo.
"You have to distinguish between two things - the Swedish economy and the Swedish stock market. The Swedish economy is the sum of all the goods and services that are produced in this country every day. There are telephones from Ericsson, cars from Volvo, chickens from Scan, and shipments from Kiruna to Skovde. That's the Swedish economy, and it's just a