Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Solutions to last week's Secret Theme rounds

Ray's Happy Birthday Bar:

You should be embarrassed if you got this one correct; the theme was things or people mentioned in the Billy Joel song "We Didn't Start the Fire." Weird song. I always thought it was a strange way to abdicate responsibility. "Not starting the fire" is not a good rationale for not putting it out. Even more bizarre is the fact that a number of the items listed in the second half of the song darn well were the fault of people Billy Joel's age, although not necessarily that of the pop radio audience at which it was aimed.

1) What 1956 bestseller by Grace Metalious shocked many American sensibilities? Peyton Place
2) What world leader survived a 1957 assassination attempt aboard a private jet, the Kashmir Princess? Chou En-Lai
3) What spree killer inspired the Bruce Springsteen song "Nebraska", as well as a number of movies, including Natural Born Killers and Badlands? Charles Starkweather
4) What movie won 11 Academy Awards in 1959? Ben-Hur
5) What Nazi war criminal was captured by the Mossad in Argentina in 1961? Adolf Eichmann
6) In 1983 America finally put its first woman in space, what's her name? Sally Ride
7) "Colonel Reb" is the mascot of what university's sports teams? University of Mississippi, a.k.a.
Ole Miss... would you believe that the model for Colonel Reb was a real-life black man? It's true!
8) What 20th century US president switched major party affiliation only 17 years before getting elected president as a member of the second party? Ronald Reagan
9) What boxer knocked out Floyd Patterson in 1962 to become world heavyweight champion?
Sonny Liston
10) What American company started as a mining wagon manufacturer in 1852, started producing cars in 1902, and eventually went out of the auto business in 1966? Studebaker

Dirty Frank's:

For the first time in a number of weeks, three teams correctly identified the theme at Frank's. We were stuck on two for quite some time. It was Charlies.

1) What classic work of erotica by Cheikh Hefzaoui was first translated into English in 1886 by Sir Richard Burton? The Perfumed Garden / Charlie perfume
2) What's the only Ivy League university founded by Baptists? It was founded in 1764 and is the seventh oldest university in the US. Brown / Charlie Brown
3) What's the only movie Rob Reiner directed in 2007? The Bucket List / Charlie Bucket
4) What event did sportscaster Keith Jackson call "The Grandaddy of Them All"? The Rose Bowl / Charlie Rose
5) What 1992 movie featured Robert Downey Jr., Marisa Tomei, Anthony Hopkins and Dan Akroyd? Chaplin
6) At what event on June 9, 1954 did Joseph Welch speak the famous quotation "Let us not assassinate this lad further, Senator. ... You've done enough. Have you no sense of decency, sir? At long last, have you no sense of decency?" Army-McCarthy Hearings / Charlie McCarthy
7) What popular brand of liquor was founded in 1875 and owned by the Brown-Forman Company since 1957? Jack Daniel's / Charlie Daniels
8) What 20th century president had a wife die while in office, and also remarried while in office? Woodrow Wilson /
Charlie Wilson's War
9) What 1975 dance craze got a huge boost by a song of the same title by Van McCoy & the Soul City Symphony? The Hustle / Charlie Hustle was Pete Rose's nickname
10) What is NFL coach Bill Parcell's nickname? The (Big) Tuna / Charlie the Tuna

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Anonymous said...

Joel's song is not about abrogating responsibility.It was written in response to a younger person's comment that Joel's age group lived during an uneventful time and that things were much worse now. Joel wrote the song to point out that that the world has always been in turmoil, is still in turmoil, and will probably always be in turmoil, despite our best efforts to change things.

Chris Randolph said...

That you, Billy? Not a lot of blog mentions lately, so you can respond to them individually..?

According to most sources I read, the song is a response to criticism of the Baby Boomer generation. "Hey maaan, mellow out! It's not like we invented bad karma." Indeed.

If you're a post-boomer (I'm an example thereof), then you've always been outnumbered by boomers and will continue to be for the next couple of decades. We're outvoted, outspent, unlikely to have a shot at seizing the reins of power for another couple of decades, and have inherited the first wholly tanking economy since the Great Depression. "Thanks."

As the great Lewis Lapham puts it in his awesome 1994 book of essays from the previous 25 years "Fortune's Child: A Portrait of the United States as Spendthrift Heir"...

"For at least a generation the American democracy has been living on the capital (moral and intellectual as well as financial) accumulated by prior generations." I'd sign that petition.

Joel's generation of Americans had it better by any measure than any other in the history of Earth. Imagine the song that his parents would write! What rhymes with Nazi, pellagra and Dust Bowl..?

That he'd whine that "us kids" (his paying audience for that particular song to add to the carnival d'irony) that things were bad when he was a lad is a bit much. Especially when just 20 years earlier the songs written by his contemporaries suggested that history could be linear, not cyclical, and things could get better.

Anonymous said...

My sister's cheerleading squad performed a dance routine to "We Didn't Start the Fire." I didn't think much of it at the time, but how weird is it that a bunch of 12 year old Catholic school girls were doing jazz hands to "AIDS, crack, Bernie Goetz?"