November 23rd, 2008


On the Short List

News Flash: It seems I am a finalist in a little contest the Chicago Tribune is conducting. Let me lay it out for you. For the 10th consecutive year, Trib columnists Eric Zorn and Mary Schmich are organizing a one-night-only Christmas carol concert, with the proceeds going to Tribune charities. I herewith quote Eric Zorn in describing the contest:

“…One carol we always do is “Angels We Have Heard on High.” And by tradition we begin with a solo, a cappella voice on the first “Gloria, in excelsis deo.” Sometimes it’s a member of our fabulous cast who does the honor. Sometimes it’s a special guest.

But this year, as in 2002, we want Gloria to be a reader. For stage one of the selection process, we’re asking you to send in an essay of 300 words or less explaining why you are the ideal man or woman to sing the “Gloria” this year (you may also nominate a willing acquaintance).

The essay should focus not so much on your talent as what you might bring to the song or bring to the moment. Your plea should make us laugh, cry, think or even seethe.

We’ll pick a small group of finalists and, for stage two, bring them down to the Tribune for the “Cheerful Idol” portion of the contest. Then we’ll post your vocal audition and your essay online and ask readers to vote on who should be Gloria this year…”

I received an email on Friday from Mr. Zorn, advising me of my finalist status. Sometime soon, probably right after I get back from Thanksgiving vacation, they want me to come over to the Tribune Tower and record my video. So even though I haven’t won anything yet, I’m sure that those of you who know me are highly impressed that I was able to actually write something less than 300 words in length. I’m not going to run my essay in this space just yet, since I figure I ought to allow the Trib to publish it first, but I’ll run it here real soon.

The concert will take place in the 1,400 seat Harris Theatre in Millennium Park near the lakefront. The show is already sold out, so it should be a good time.
  • Current Music
    Oh Carol - Neil Sedaka
Red Wings1

Intellectual Property, If I May Call It That

The graphic shown above was the heading for a book review in today’s Sun-Times. There’s a very short list of you who will do the same double-take I did. That review title – “Dial P for Pervert” – was precisely the title of a short film that Ed G., Margie K., and I made in the late 1970s.

Now I’ll grant you, our film was written and performed within a few hours’ time and recorded for posterity on Super 8 (silent) film, plus which it never played at a theater near you – or near anyone else, for that matter. And I’m not really pitching a bitch about intellectual property, but if you’re on that short list to which I referred earlier, I hope this gave you a smile!

btw, I must report with considerable pride that I myself played the role of the pervert. And that’s why they call it acting.
  • Current Music
    All for the Best (from Godspell)