In honor of my upcoming visit to Warshingten (that’s how they pronounce it on NPR!), here’s a West Coast original:
hard in the paint: To approach a problem, obstacle, or challenge with supreme confidence of success through a commitment to use all facilities available to one’s self to achieve a goal. The term has etymological roots in the basketball parlance that describes an attempt to score in the crowded and highly contested area directly under and immediately adjacent to the raised hoop on a basketball court, or “painted” area. Shot attempts in this area are traditionally only successful when made with a strong conviction to score, skill, overpowering strength, or a combination thereof (i.d. “going hard”). (Urban Dictionary)
Cue the East Coast copy:
“After tramping 70km through Nki National Park in the congo basin rainforest in Cameroon, we stayed the night at the Baka pygmy village on the outskirts of the park. One of villagers, Pierre, was our guide. The next day they performed some traditional music for me. They were infatuated with the videos i took. It was an amazing experience…..To get to this village (…) required a two day squishy hot bus trip then a 5 hour drive in a landrover. We had to hire someone just to chainsaw through the trees that constantly fall across the small road.”
…it’s gone now: Liberace Museum Is Closing.
You’ve never heard of Liberace? Well… there’s this:
There’s also the heartbreaking story of Wladziu Valentino Liberace, born to immigrant parents in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 1919, who was so obviously, flamboyantly gay in a time and society that punished homosexuals with everything from social stigma to crimilization, and yet celebrated his on-stage personality as “…the summit of sex—the pinnacle of masculine, feminine, and neuter. Everything that he, she, and it can ever want… a deadly, winking, sniggering, snuggling, chromium-plated, scent-impregnated, luminous, quivering, giggling, fruit-flavoured, mincing, ice-covered heap of mother love” – a double bind if there ever was one. Liberace would take his “secret” to the grave at the age of 67, and even from his death bed, he fought newspaper allegations that he was dying of AIDS.
And then – this may come as a surprise – there’s this guy who really (really!) knew how to play the piano:
Gefunden auf der Rückseite einer Textkopie der Grundlegung zur Metaphysik der Sitten, 2. Abschnitt, angefertigt schätzungsweise um die Jahrtausendwende von einer bei den Jesuiten scheints sehr gelangweilten Cohu… (für Großversion aufs Bildchen klicken).
Blind Boy Fuller, Pistol Slapper Blues, 1938:
Nun gibt es bei Smithsonian Folkways noch eine sehr schöne Version eines daran angelehnten Liedes des mit Fuller befreundeten Baby Tate: See what you done done (mp3), mit der schönen Zeile: She got great big legs shaped like Georgia ham. Die Aufnahme aus dem Jahr 1977 stammt vom gerade erschienenen Album Classic Appalachian Blues, dessen Erwerb Cohu den Bluesfans unter ihren Lesern nur empfehlen kann. Bei Amazon (und iTunes, nehm ich mal an) kann man es für 9 Euro herunterladen. Das gewohnt ausführliche Booklet gibt’s hier als pdf.
Äh, und wenn man weit genug nach Osten geht, kommt irgendwann Rory Gallagher, 1972: