Tuesday, April 25, 2017

The Boldest detergent ever (1974)

Procter & Gamble had a good line of detergent products back in the day. They've sold off some brands (i.e. Oxydol), and retained others (Cheer, Tide, Gain). Somewhere in the middle is Bold, which was introduced in 1974, according to research, not sooner, as the YouTube poster who submitted the following ad believes.

Anyway, Jo Anne Worley (Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In) sings the praises of the new product.

Musical Interlude: A Woman Needs Love (Just Like You Do) (1981)

Ray Parker, Jr. & Raydio topped Billboard's Hot R & B Singles chart in May 1981 with "A Woman Needs Love (Just Like You Do)", the title tune from the album that had been released three months earlier. It happens this was my introduction to Parker, along with "You Can't Change That".

Back then, it'd be easy to mistake him for actor Billy Dee Williams, largely because of the similar facials. Raydio, unfortunately, split before the end of '81, but Parker's solo career took off soon after.

Monday, April 24, 2017

What Might've Been: Grindl (1963)

Here's a domestic sitcom with a twist.

Grindl, a 1-year wonder for NBC in 1963-4, cast Imogene Coca in the title role of a talkative woman who went from job to job, only because her primary employer was an employment agency that filled vacant jobs for various employers. That's still happening today, but it's not as prevalent.

Creator-producer David Swift already had a hit with another domestic sitcom for Screen Gems with Hazel, who at least had a steady job. Grindl depicted just the opposite. In Grindl's case, she got into some of the same kinds of situations that Hazel would find herself in occasionally, all quite by chance or accident.

Scope out the episode, "She-Wolf of Wall Street", and see if you can't figure out why this series, nestled snugly in between Disney's Wonderful World of Color and Bonanza, ultimately failed. There will be no rating, as I never saw the show (I was just an infant at the time.).

Musical Interlude: Find Your Way Back (1981)

Jefferson Starship's "Find Your Way Back" was the first single off their 1981 album, "Modern Times". The video would, in fact, gain significant airplay on MTV after the channel was launched that summer.

If anything, the introduction of MTV would enable the band to gain a new audience that hadn't been fully exposed to their sound. As I've often noted, I grew up in a country-centric household, so a lot of this was still new to me.

High school this 'n' that

Less than 24 hours after besting Albany Academy, LaSalle was back in action on Saturday, and was thumped, 18-2, by Queensbury. The sad part of this is the fact that The Record, due in large part to sports editor David Johnson being on vacation last week, couldn't send anyone to cover the Friday double-dip at Joe Bruno Stadium. Johnson's absence also results in the cheesiest, laziest game summaries I've ever read in a newspaper.

I've said it enough times. It's equally on the schools and the local press to work together. Not everyone is on social media and/or the internet. Old school journalism, friends, still works.
Meanwhile, across town at Troy High, I had ventured to the ol' alma mater essentially for my first look at the softball team on Saturday. No such luck. The morning rains on Friday, despite the best efforts of Troy's grounds crew, forced the cancellation of the softball game vs. Bethlehem. No makeup date has yet been set, but figure one will be, with three weeks and change left in the regular season. The girls are scheduled to finish the regular season with a non-league tilt at South Glens Falls on May 12.

As a result, it was a lost day on Saturday for the remaining Troy teams that did play. Bethlehem collected a receipt in baseball, avenging a 2-0 loss on April 5 with a 9-3 verdict on Saturday. Troy starter Isaac Brown, looking like a junior grade Noah Syndergaard with the flowing blond hair, didn't get out of the third inning, and was undone by a sloppy defense, which committed 4 errors early on. The Eagles scored seven runs in the third to ice the game. It was so bad that the fathers of two Troy players left before the Flying Horses got on the scoreboard.
Bethlehem also shut out Troy in tennis, 9-0. The goofs at The Record, due to an editing error, claimed Troy also faced---and lost to---Schenectady on Saturday, but that would've been earlier in the week, as the tennis courts were vacated for the day by the time I left the campus at 1:15 pm, following the baseball game. The Patriots were supposed to come to Troy on April 3, but that was postponed. Figuring this was moved back to Friday. Troy is winless in tennis this season. The lacrosse team has dropped five straight after falling to Bethlehem, 8-2. I realize lacrosse is a harder sport to master, but if coach Brian Bemmer doesn't turn things around these final three weeks, it looks like one-and-done come sectional time.
Back to the softball team. Troy won the Keenholts tournament in Guilderland on Sunday, defeating Shaker, 4-1 in the opener, then downing Cohoes (Colonial Council), 5-2, as senior ace Hunter LeVesque outdueled Cohoes' Isabelle DiChiaro. It's right back to the action today, as the girls come home for a makeup game vs. Colonie. The Garnet Raiders were to have played on April 5, but that game was postponed. The baseball game that day was bumped to make room for the aforementioned non-league game vs. Bethlehem, so it's also being made up today. With the two wins, the softball team moves to 7-1 on the season, and will have a rematch with Shaker next Monday. Weather permitting, of course.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Erin Moran (1960-2017)

It's just come across the wires regarding the passing of actress-singer Erin Moran at 56. Causes unknown at this point, but it brings an end to a tragic post-career tale.

Erin was in her early teens when she was cast as Joanie Cunningham on Happy Days, having already logged a resume that included appearances on Daktari and The Courtship of Eddie's Father, among other places. America, then, watched Erin grow up over the course of a decade. Erin found time to make a guest appearance on The Waltons during either season 2 or 3 of Happy Days. During the second half of the series run, Joanie was paired with Chachi Arcola (Scott Baio), leading to the short-lived spin-off, Joanie Loves Chachi, which lasted parts of 2 seasons (1982-3), before the couple returned to Days and were married off in the series finale.

Come to think of it, maybe that was when they should've tried the spin-off, don't ya think?

Erin's personal problems, including depression, led to her career going downhill. Her last film of note was "Not Another 'B' Movie", two years after she had appeared on VH1's Celebrity Fit Club.

We'll see if Me-TV or any other cabler with the rights to Happy Days does a Joanie-centric tribute marathon. Meantime, let's revisit the series premiere of Joanie Loves Chachi. Amazingly, it turns out that Erin really wasn't interested in doing the show when it aired. Maybe she had the same idea, that it should've waited until after Days ended, I don't know.

I echo the sentiments of Erin's castmates, including Henry Winkler & Anson Williams, when I say that Erin has found her peace at last. Rest in peace, shortcake. You'll be missed.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Even monsters prefer cable over satellite television (2017)

You've seen the short version of this next item, I'm sure, over the last few weeks.

You have a werewolf, a mad scientist, the Grim Reaper, and a mummy on a train. The latter pair seem to have settled into domesticated life, each having kids.

This is the long version that hasn't seen as much air time, and lacks the voice-over narration at the end.

I'm still trying to get my head wrapped around a mummy and the personification of death having gotten married and raising families........