Sunday, September 23, 2007

Wishful Thinking

I wish that Bruce Springsteen would begin releasing a CD series of his greatest live performances, a la Bob Dylan, the Grateful Dead and Neil Young. You can’t tell me that there aren’t some great tapes out there; at the very least, the June 1978 Roxy show, the December 1978 Winterland show, and the 1988 Stockholm show come to mind. At one time, Bruce shrugged his shoulders and winked at the concept of bootlegs (famously crying out, “All you bootleggers out there in radioland…roll your tapes!” during the Roxy show, which was carried live), but got a bit more hard-line about it later. I’ve got some of those bootlegs, and while they’re fun to listen to, the sound quality is strictly second-rate. I can’t tell you how much I’d love to hear pristine versions of the 1978 intro to “Prove It All Night,” the early version of “Point Blank,” or the extended “Sad Eyes” version of “Backstreets” that he played in the late seventies.

How about it, Bruce? I’m still recovering from not being able to get tickets to your October 26 Oakland show (Ticketmaster sucks, by the way). Feel like throwing me a bone?

I wish that someone would write a book about the history of McDonalds Hamburgers, with particular emphasis on how McD’s workforce has evolved over the years. I worked at McDonalds for four years, 1976-1980, and made enough money to pay for about 2/3 of my college costs. At that time, nearly all of the employees were high school students; in fact, I don’t believe there was a single employee over the age of 24. It was hard work, and sometimes management tended to be a little strict (some might even say fascist), but the lessons I learned flipping burgers and toasting buns at McDonalds have served me well in every job I’ve had since – learning the importance of teamwork, learning how to get along with a diverse group of people, learning when and how to push the envelope when decisions came from above that just didn’t make any sense.

All you have to do now is go into any McDonalds to see that there aren’t a lot of high school students working there anymore. What happened? Was it a conscious decision on the part of the corporation? Was it simply the evolution of the workforce, and an increase in the number of adults who qualified only for relatively low-paying jobs like fast-food? An evolution in how high school kids view the concept of work? Some combination of the above? I might be the only one, but I think it would make an interesting book. I’d read it.

I really, really wish that ESPN would hand Mike Patrick his walking papers. It’s more than just the latest bit of idiocy – his out of the blue, where did that come from soliloquy on Britney Spears, during overtime of the Georgia-Alabama game – it’s the fact that he’s terrible, one of the worst play-by-play announcers in the business. ESPN’s old Sunday Night football crew that Patrick led was the worst NFL crew; absolutely awful. So when the network decided that Patrick wasn’t the man to lead their Monday Night NFL package, what did they do? Oh, just bump the best college football play-by-play man in the business, Ron Franklin, and give his spot to Patrick. He’s been bad ever since, and let’s face it – at this point in his career, he won’t be getting any better. It’s time for him to go!

1 comment:

MC said...

That was brutal. Who talks about that during overtime at a college football game between two teams that have nothing to do with that particular subject. I mean, I could maybe, maybe see talking about her if she was an alumnus of either school, but wow... that was bad.