October 17, 2006

The Culture Maven: Riddle me this …

Autumn is upon us. Leaves are falling. I just bought a new rake. But, but, but I’m not quite ready to tackle that yard yet. So I’m killing time, daydreaming. A wandering but inquiring mind needs to know? Mick, Keith, yeah you all, the Glimmer Twins, what’s up with Alice Cooper opening your show at the Downs? You guys used to showcase stars on the rise like Ike and Tina, Little Stevie, the Meters, the Nevilles. Alice Cooper? What’s up with that? You could have done worse than Bettye LaVette. She’s the longtime soul sister who got lost in the shuffle back in the day, but is getting her props at age 60. Which causes me to inquire of Louisville’s so-called music lovers: Where was ya when LaVette played Headliners a couple of weeks back? One guy’s opinion is that it was the best rock ’n’ roll show in this burg since John Fogerty ripped the gilt from the refurbished columns at The Palace. That was 10 years ago. Hey, Anne, yeah you, Anne Northup. Tell me, Ms. Congresswoman, how come your office won’t respond to repeated requests from one of your constituents about funding for cancer research? You’re on the Appropriations Committee, right? That questioner advises that funding was cut by $40 million or so. You serve from a state with serious cancer rates. So he wondered what happened? Says he’s called your office a number of times, but none of your staff has found the time to return them with a response. Anne, will you answer if he sends you a check? And tell me this, Anne, what did you know about your cohort Foley? And when? One more thing, how did your office get my personal e-mail address? Seriously. I live in a neighborhood that is pretty tuned in politically. Which means yards have more candidate signage than fallen leaves. But I’m wondering what’s going on elsewhere? I was caught in Gaslight Festival detours the other week in J-town, so I drove through several residential streets in that part of town. Saw nary a political sign anywhere. For any candidate. Same thing in the neighborhoods along Southside Drive. Does it mean voters in those areas don’t care? Or that they simply want to hear what the candidates have to say before casting their lot? Let’s hope it’s the latter. Speaking of the South End, tell me, Mr. Big Oil, how come gas prices out there are a lot cheaper than in my neck of the woods? Hey, Mitch, not Barnhart, I mean you, Mitch McConnell. Uh, Mr. Senator, don’t you think it a bit premature, and, I don’t know, presumptuous perhaps, to attempt to fund a victory party for a U.S. victory in Iraq? What was the number, $20 million? Were you going to rent, say, Freedom Hall? Papa John’s? Don’t you think it wiser to bring the boys and girls still alive back home in one piece? Wouldn’t that be celebration enough? Couldn’t we send those dollars to the Gulf Coast? One question too for you, Dick Cheney. You still around? OK, two — whatcha been doin’? Oh, yeah, one more thing about Jeffersontown. You fried chicken lovers listened to my cohort Marty Rosen yet? The vittles at Dinner Is Done on Ruckriegel Parkway are all that and more. The fried thighs are delicioso. The cornbread salad sublime. It’s a friendly place, too. Those folks will just sit down at your table for a chat when things slow down behind the counter. Here’s a query for the muckety mucks at Fox Television. It’s not about those nabobs O’Reilly or Hannity either. It’s about the national pastime. How come you schedule MLB championship series games at the same time? How come we have to suffer through breathlessly inane Jeanie Zelasko during the pre-game shows? And how about some announcers for the ALCS who actually say something incisive during the games? Finally, with Iran and North Korea treating nuclear devices like Fourth of July firecrackers, riddle me this. An irreverent Web site that profiles international movers and shakers offers this description. “XXX is often said to be stark raving bonkers, but this is a misconception. He is eccentric, certainly, and his government is extremely secretive and brutal to dissidents, but experts say XXX is … clear-headed, politically astute, and as sane as any leader with unchecked power.” Does this refer to a) Hugo Chavez, b) Kim Jong Il, c) Francisco Franco, d) Mahmoud Ahmadinejad or e) George W. Bush? Contact the writer at cdk@culturemaven.com