item 1 >>> Now Playing… sex machine James Brown is the best…as we used to say, the hardest working man in show business, in or out of prison. And this is may favorite of his, hands down. Jeepers, even I can dance to it and I can’t dance at all! Originally title “(Get Up I Feel Like Being a) Sex Machine,” eventually shortened. “The way I like it, is the way it is…I got mine, don’t worry ’bout his”…

item 2 >>> LQQK @ †h∆†! the crunge OK, not a video…I tried to find a live performance but struck out. “The Crunge” from the “Houses of the Holy” LP is Led Zep’s JB tribute…where’s that confounded bridge?

item 3 >>> As the Castle Turns…I mentioned King Arthur yesterday…even today we are somewhat familiar with the Camelot legends, altho mainly thru such sanitized versions as Sword in the Stone, the broadway musical Camelot, and even the comic strip Prince Valiant. There are literally hundreds of stories, books, and poems, and needless to say they tend to contradict each other. But this was the ultimate soap opera and adventure story of olden days and I think it’s due for a rebirth as a movie franchise. Yes, I know there’s a series Merlin currently on the Syfy channel, but I’m thinking ever bigger than that, and back to the roots. I mean, it’s got everything: magic spells, heck there’s even an invisible knight…monsters like the Questing Beast…familial inter-connections to boggle the mind…epic battles…villainous betrayals…savage murders…love trysts up the wazoo (that didn’t come out right…sorry)…just about everything you can imagine. To give you one example…

item 4 >>> Gawain á Go Go…Sir Gawain (sometimes spelled with an “e” on the end) is one of the most popular knights in the stories. His strength is triple between 9AM and noon. He is the most chivalrous, nicknamed the “Maidens’ Knight,” altho he gets a make-over for the worse in Thomas Mallory’s Le Mort d’Arthur…this was written in the 1400s, and stands as the basis for most of the modern variants. He is one of the 4 Orkney Knights, sons of King Lot and Margawse…you may recall that she was Arthur’s half-sister, and had a bastard son with him, Modred…altho this happened before they knew they were related, you see. One of his brothers Gaheris beheaded (yes!) their mother after she had an affair with Lamorak, the son of the man who killed their father…and Gawain slayed Lamorak…get the picture? Ya gotta love this stuff…

item 5 >>> The American Connection…Of course in the funny papers, Gawain is a total good guy. When as a youth Prince Valiant travels from Thule, his home on the west coat of Norway, to Camelot in 1937, Gawain befriends him and Val becomes his squire. Did you know that Prince Valiant came to America 1000 years before Columbus? In 1946, soon after Val marries Aleta, Queen of the Misty Isles, she is kidnapped, and he relentlessly pursues her…past Iceland, Greenland, Newfoundland, down the St. Lawrence River, finally rescuing her at Niagara Falls. In fact their first son Arn was born in America a year later. Val celebrated by getting drunk with his Indian buddies.

item 6 >>> What you mean “we,” Paleface?…I confess that I don’t keep as close tabs on movies as I suppose I ought, so maybe this other idea I had has already been done.  April 12, 2011 marks the Sesquicentennial, 150th Anniversary, of the Civil War. Amazingly, but not surprisingly when you think about it, some in the politically correct crowd are suggesting we ignore this commemoration, for obvious reasons. They are countered by the “Heritage not Hate” campaign. Still, did you know that Indians fought in the war…on both sides? As was par for the times, these were segregated units. For the Union there was the Indian Home Guard. And on the side of the Confederacy, various groups known collectively as the Indian Cavalry. They were drawn from the “Five Civilized Tribes”…the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, and Seminole. This famous battle flag is based on the CSA’s Stars and Bars…the 5 red stars added represent the FCT, with the Cherokees in the middle. You can even get this on a T-shirt…anyway, interesting angle for a film, sez me.

item 7 >>> Vexillologically Speaking…Vexillology is the study of flags, another of my lifelong interests from an early age. I noticed several Indian flags had the Crescent and Star motif…(lower right) is the Seminole of Oklahoma…and wondered if it had anything to do with the symbol that graces the flags of many Mohammedan nations. So far, no clue…altho this design is very old, dating back to the ancient Sumerians. But the crescent moon on the state flag of South Carolina is not that at all. The current Palmetto State flag is in the upper left, an early red variant below it, and upper right, the Liberty Flag of Ft. Moultrie, Charleston. And what looks like a crescent moon is actually a symbolic representation of a gorget…this was a piece of leather or steel that protected a knight’s throat and neck. It later began an ornamental device, seen here in a portrait of a young George Washington.

item 8 >>> Off the Reservation…If you listen to “Surfin’ Trash!” the latest installment of my podcast “The Whole Thing” (link below), you’ll hear the Rivingtons singing about Kickapoo Joy Juice. I searched my memory and came up half-right…the tonic of course is from Al Capp’s Li’l Abner comic strip…”a liquor of such stupefying potency that the hardiest citizens of Dogpatch, after the first burning sip, rose into the air, stiff as frozen codfish.” I thought the Indian who cooked up the concoction was named “Hairless Joe”…but that was his partner, the inexplicably hirsute mountain man. The Indian was Lonesome Polecat…but I got his tribe right. And it isn’t Kickapoo, altho that is a real tribe…he belonged to the Fried Dog tribe. In 1965, Capp licensed the name to NuGrape, which came out with a soda pop version…a copy of the citrusy Mountain Dew (introduced in 1948, national distribution in 1964.). It’s still manufactured today, by Monarch Beverages of Atlanta, but available mainly in Asia. (Jeez, I loved that strip…even better than Dick Tracy…)

item 9 >>> Cran-Everything…
Back on Nov. 25, I reviewed the many types of Ocean Spray Cran-  juices, springing from Lakeville, Mass. Sifting thru a stack-o-stuff, I found one I’d missed…Cran*America…a mixture of “America’s 3 Native Fruits”…cranberries, Concord grape, and blueberry. These date from June 2000, and the ad is from one of those “dollar stores”…can’t win ’em all, nez pah? (To give you an example, Googling “cranberry” got over 13 million hits…”Cran America,” 21 hits…)

item 10 >>> You Might Be a Groovy Geezer If…you’ve reached one of the 3 stages of Leaving Your Fly Open. (1) You do and you catch it. (2) You do and you don’t catch it. (3) You don’t particularly care one way or the other…

Wicked Ballsy

Mr. High Kick…

shameless plugsium…

Podcasts at http://stolfpod.podbean.com and   http://thewholething.podbean.com

Other Daily blog at http://stolf.wordpress.com (the legendary Stolf’s Blog)

More bloggage at http://travelingcyst.blogspot.com and  http://www.examiner.com/retro-pop-culture-in-watertown/mark-john-astolfi

Resume and audio samples at http://home.rr.com/mastolfi

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