Monday, May 10, 2010

Monday Potpourri

I was in Ballard Park again yesterday. I got this shot of that Solomon's Seal patch; as you can see, it goes beyond being a mere patch and gets very close to being defined as a thicket!

While in the park I noted all the birds about and singing - lots of Goldfinches, Yellow Warblers, Gray Catbirds, Robins, Cardinals, and Eastern Towhees. I heard and then caught a peripheral glimpse of a Phoebe in the trees surrounding the Quarry. And heard but didn't see - at least two House Wrens and a Baltimore Oriole. Oh yeah, and there was a veritable aerobatics show going on over the Quarry Meadow, a mixed crowd of Barn Swallows, Rough-winged Swallows, and Chimney Swifts all dodging and swooping and twisting in the air. It was quite a sight!

Yesterday was a sad day, too. It seems we lost Lena Horne; she was 92. She was a pioneer in race relations as well as being a premier singer and entertainer. This morning I heard an excerpt from an interview with her back in the 1980s; the interviewer asked her if, because of her lighter color, she ever contemplated passing for white back in the 1930s and '40s, when her career was just getting started and passing might have made her life a lot easier. She laughed and said she wouldn't have dared, her grandmother would have killed her for trying any such thing. And then on a more serious note she said she never even thought about it because it would never have occurred to her to deny who she was. Amen! Here's Ms. Lena in her most remembered appearance, singing "Stormy Weather" in the 1943 movie of the same name.

There are some musical birthdays today, too. Donovan (Donovan Leitch), Scots folksinger turned psychedelic Pied Piper and '60s icon turns 64 today. I thought I'd celebrate with one of his more famous psychedelic tunes, "Sunshine Superman".

U2 frontman Bono (Paul David Hewson) turns 50 today. U2 is one of my favorite bands, and one of the best rock & roll concert movies ever made is Phil Joanou's documentary of their 1987 Joshua Tree tour, U2: Rattle and Hum. My favorite segment in the film, and one of my favorite U2 songs, is "Pride (In the Name of Love)", a tribute to Martin Luther King Jr. This is a prime example of Bono's ability to work up an audience.

And that's all the news that fits on this Monday afternoon. Enjoy!

Photo & text © 2010 by A. Roy Hilbinger


  1. I like the way you have knitted your insights with the news about birthdays and deaths. The coming together of the personal and the universal. Is that it?

    Loved stopping by here.

    Joy and peace,

    P.S: Two my friends celebrated their birthdays on the 10th away from home.

  2. Gawd we're getting so old!