It's a Tuesday, so that means it's an opportunity for an entry in my semi-regular, quasi-periodic, almost-feature blogging topic, the Tuesday Newsday Two-Hundred (TN200). This is where I create a snippet of blog-exclusive writing of exactly 200 words, based on a recent story in the news.
So I'd like to offer you a new TN200 post, and also provide my own vote and give the results from my last Battle of the Bands post -- I'll do that at the end of this post.
But first, for this initial 2014 edition of TN200, I thought I'd go in a different direction than using a humorous odd-ball story as inspiration like usual. In this piece, my inspiration is more... Inspirational. I call it "Bridging the Gap" and I hope you enjoy it. As always, the link to the original news story is at the end.
Bridging the Gap
Jonny felt the swirling winds tousle his hair. He hadn't come here for the view, but the light reflecting off the water far below him was riveting.
The voice came from behind him again. "Please don't do this, mate," it said. A man's voice. Jonny heard anxiety in it. Jonny had to admit he felt nervous himself. Funny -- he'd thought it was going to be easy.
Jonny didn't turn around. "What's your name?" he asked.
"Mike," the man said. Or maybe the man said "Mark?" "Ike?" Jonny wasn't sure. Whatever -- 'Mike' worked.
"Why do you care, Mike?" Jonny said.
"I just do," Mike said. "You can get through it."
Jonny snorted. "You don't even know what's wrong."
"It don't matter, mate. You can get better, whatever it is."
Jonny stopped staring at the flickering water and turned to look at Mike. He was in his early twenties and looked like a typical yuppie, probably on his way to work. Jonny noticed a small crowd gathering behind Mike. He could also hear sirens approaching.
"Let's go for a coffee and talk it over," Mike said.
Jonny sighed. Why the hell not? The moment was past, anyway.
He climbed down.
Original News Story: Trying to Find 'Mike'
Battle of The Bands 1/15/2014 Results
In my last Battle of the Bands (BOTB) post, I offered up "Take Me to the River" by both Talking Heads and Al Green, who originally wrote the song.
This is a favorite song of mine, and I really like both versions. The Talking Heads can be a bit of an acquired taste -- and there are many of their songs that get not much more than a "meh" response from me. But the funky infectious bass line of "Take Me to the River" and the groove and catchy chorus are awesome. I know that a big reason why I like the Talking Heads version is probably because Al Green wrote the song to begin with. The mix of arty and weird with earthy funk and groove is what I like most about the Talking Heads, and when that earthy foundation isn't there, the band is not nearly as good in my opinion. The pinnacle of the band was their "Remain in Light" album, when that funk and groove were up-front and hitting you hard, and then when coupled with freak-out guitar master Adrian Belew? Incredible.
So, yes --a lot of why I like "Take Me to the River" is because of the funk and groove that Al Green put there (and I especially love his live version of the song in last week's BOTB post), but coupling it with the arty weirdness of the Talking Heads gives it extra impact, I think.
But that really doesn't change the result. Even with my vote, Al wins this one:
-- Al Green 4; Talking Heads 3.
However, as a parting gift, let me leave you with a live version of "The Great Curve" from the Talking Heads album "Remain in Light". This was recorded live in Rome in 1980 and the sound and video quality are shaky, but check out that funk!! Busta Jones as an extra bass player to compliment Tina Weymouth, and Adrian Belew in full psycho screaming guitar mode. Amazing! I defy you to listen and not start bobbin' your head or tappin' your toe. ;)