For Ian And His Next Two Hitchhikers

Aah Joy Division. Right before their big American break-through (fueled by the hitsingle Love Will Tear Us Apart) lead-singer Ian Curtis had to go and commit suicide, thus laying the foundations for New Order whose Blue Monday is forever etched in my mind thanks to my older sister’s New Wave obsession at the time.

In commemoration: 30+ versions of Love Will Tear Us Apart.

(With thanks to Bernard, who seriously needs to set up his own weblog ASAP)

Banned From SNL

… and why am I not surprised that:

Frank Zappa was banned from the show after his hosting stint on October 21, 1978. His distinct sense of humor made him unpopular with the cast and crew. During his performance, he made a habit of reading cue-cards and mugging for the camera, and many cast members (save for John Belushi) deliberately stood far from him during the goodnights.

Via Cynical-C

Humo(u)r Me

English vs American humo(u)r? Turns out it’s not at all that different — or so thinks comedian Simon Pegg:

Americans can fully appreciate irony. They just don’t feel entirely comfortable using it on each other, in case it causes damage. A bit like how we feel about guns.

Regardless: I’m pretty sure 99,99% percent of you won’t get this prime example of Belgian West-Flemish humor… :)

Inside The Hungarian Psyche

Group Hug!

Introducing someone as a ‘friend’ communicates more commitment to the Hungarian than what you probably mean using this word, especially if you come from the American culture. It takes time for someone to call you his friend in Hungary, and if it happens, you are one of the few chosen ones. Americans tend to have a low wall on the outside, and a higher one on the inside. Hungarians have a higher wall on the outside, but once you are in, you are in.

For more, spend some time perusing this indispensible guide to the Inner Hungarian. :)

Modernism In Music

Bernard sent in this link which I thought was an interesting read: Music is the Healing Force of the Universe:

Why is that modernism in the visual arts has received so more widespread acceptance than modernism in music? Virtually everyone knows who Picasso is, and could probably recognise one of his works if they tried, but mention Schoenberg or Cecil Taylor or Captain Beefheart and you’ll either get a bemused, non-comprehending look or a sigh of disgust.

Sidenote: I think the above title may well be the most high-brow piece of writing ever to have appeared on this weblog.

Captain Midnight

A creepy incident occurred at Chicago’s WGN-TV on 22/11/’87:

The pictures on the station monitors in the studio suddenly began to jitter and twitch. Across Chicago, countless other televisions did the same, as Dan’s clips of the Bears game were lost in a brief flurry of static and replaced with the sinister, grinning visage of Max Headroom.

And that was just the beginning. View the clip here.
Related: The Wyoming Incident.