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Match to Flame – 40

posted on March 22, 2017

Characters suddenly began proliferating in Funky like aunts at a family reunion. There was the black cheerleader Junebug Jones; Melinda Budd, Holly Budd’s ambitious stage mother; Jerome the drum major; Nancy the school librarian; Ron the tennis pro; Irma, Rita Righton’s tennis partner; Senator Noah Vale; Neal, the director of the Lighthouse, a home for status offenders; Channel One reporters Brenda Harpy and Minnie Cameron; news anchor Charlie Lord; Phil the Forecaster; talk show host John Darling; and program director Reed Roberts. This along with numerous inanimate forms suddenly achieving sentience, such as the talking trees and leaves, talking clouds, talking school desks, talking video games, a talking jack-o-lantern, and even a talking tennis ball machine that goes on to play at Wimbledon. It seems I managed to ignore Flash Fairfield’s thoughtful and well-intentioned advice on almost a weekly basis.

From The Complete Funky Winkerbean Volume Three

John Darling – Take 55

posted on March 20, 2017


posted on March 19, 2017

Got to see some magic happen yesterday evening. The Smithereens played at The Kent Stage in Kent, Ohio and they were hands down the best rock ‘n’ roll band in the land last night, and staked their claim to being one of the best American rock bands ever. Certainly Dennis Diken is one of rock’s very best drummers, and Pat DiNizio has one of rock’s most distinctive voices… and last night Jim Babjak and Severo “The Thrilla” Jornacion stood shoulder to shoulder with them. It was a transformative evening and one of those times when you felt bad for the people who weren’t there listening to The Smithereens rock – the – house because it was the only place that mattered last night. Their love for and belief in the life-affirming power of rock ‘n’roll comes through in their playing and it can’t help but make you smile and transport you, if only for an evening, to a better place. On the day when Chuck Berry passed away, there was no finer way to celebrate his legacy than by watching and listening to The Smithereens perform their rock ‘n’ roll magic.