While following wikipedia links around yesterday I discovered that: 1.) The 1985 New Coke formulation is still available on Yap Island (Why? I don't know.) and 2.) In addition to American dollars, Yap islanders use stones as money. Some of these stones are up to twelve feet in diameter. (No information on what Yap wallets might be like.) If so inclined you can read about the island of Yap here.
I am now reading "Lulu in Hollywood" by Louise Brooks; a book I have known about for years but have never read. I found it for a buck in an Alexandria thrift store the other day. I have briefly blogged about her before, but Brooks was a silent screen film star and fashion trend setter, known primarily for her distinctive bobbed hairstyle (which she called her "black helmet") and appearance in the G.W. Pabst's film "Pandora's Box" (1929). In it she portrays Lulu, an interesting female archetype - one of the first femme fatales. Lulu is a conscienceless seductress who is quite unaware and unconcerned with her sexual attractiveness; needless to say, she causes all sorts of havoc with men. At the end, when her social position has declined to that of a prostitute, she is killed by... Jack the Ripper! Ha ha! I became aware of the character via Alban Berg's expressionistic, atonal opera Lulu. The introductory scene is interesting: A circus ringleader introduces her as the most interesting attraction in his menagerie - and the action begins.
Brooks was quite the phenom in her time. Henri Langlois, a French film historian, once famously said, "There is no Garbo, there is no Dietrich, there is only Louise Brooks!" The only thing that kept her from having a lasting and well-known film career was her difficulty in dealing with studio heads and directors; she honestly did not enjoy making films and didn't give a hoot about the Hollywood culture and lifestyle. Like Lulu, she was a disruption wherever she went. She could write, though... "Lulu in Hollywood" is a fascinating and very well-written book, the ultimate Tinseltown insider's tell-all.
(By the way, have you ever read Kenneth Anger's "Hollywood Babylon?" Wow.)
Watched yet another episode of Tour of Duty last night. The Nam, man, the Nam. And it's one, two, three/What are we fighting for?/Don't ask me I don't give a damn!/Next stop is Vietnam! - Country Joe and the Fish singing the Official Theme Song of the Vietnam Police Action.
Meanwhile, in Burbank (a place that actively supported the troops - well, the Marines - being sent to Vietnam), I made some updates to my Portal of the Folded Wings page.
Yesterday I got an assignment to speak in church 15-20 minutes from the pulpit during sacrament meeting on the 18th. The subject is "Our Heritage in the Church." No problem! I have all sorts of ideas.
My piano lesson was somewhat lackluster this week. I played my songs okay, but sort of did a brain freeze during the new song play-throughs. I was exceptionally stupid; I felt like I should have been wearing a dunce cap. It's the Dog Days of Summer Syndrome, I guess. I find it hard to express enthusiasm for anything right now - life seems dreary.
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