The first task for a new manager

Back at the Soo Line, there was a programmer who felt strongly he should be promoted to manager despite the fact that nobody was working for him. One wag was heard to joke that he would be promoted to manager and that his first task would be to lay off one person in his group.

RIP Queen of Disco

Sad to hear that Donna Summer died at the young age of 63. She started her commercial career as a backup singer for Three Dog night in the early 1970s. While she is perhaps best known for her mainstream disco hits like the 1979’s Bad Girls and Hot Stuff, my favorite by far is the techo-pop she did with producer Giorgio Moroder. If one of the beauties of music is to momentarily release us from the banalities of our corporeal existence, prepare to soar past the planets with her 1977 Morodor collaboration ‘I feel Love’.

RIP Donald “Duck” Dunn

Well, the Duck died this weekend. As a bass player for the Stax Records house band, Booker T and the MGs, as well as coupling with guitarist Steve Cropper, Dunn performed on many beloved R&B hits–most of the hit songs charting during the 1960s. He can also be seen as part of the dream team band put together by Belushi and Akryod in the Blues Brothers movie. As an aside, this movie is a bit of a gem in terms of the highly accomplished, but little known, session musicians performing in the movie.

His storied discography can be found here:

I will let Belushi do the introductions–Dunn is smoking his trademark pipe:

Today is a Beautiful Day!

A man I know told me this story about his father during his final illness.

His dad was dying and was bedridden. He asked his son to take him out to the back yard so he could get some fresh air. The son put his dad on a lawn chair and put on the necessary blankets, though it was a warm day. When he was set up, his dad asked for a popsickle. Due to his illness, the father could not eat properly, and the son held it to his mouth and wiped off the melted popsickle that dripped down while he ate.

When he was done, his dad took a look around. It was a sunny, warm, day. A light breeze was blowing and birds were chirping. His dad took this all in and said “Today is a beautiful day!”

The Summer of 1978, Forever Autumn

I like to end my Friday Night postings on a reflective note, and the 1978 Justin Hayward (Moody Blues) cover of Forever Autumn certainly does that. In the Summer of 1978, I received my Two Year Computer Programming Certificate from 916 Vo-Tech, and entered the professional journey that would soon bring me to the Old Coders.

I moved to a basement in Bloomington and was missing my friends and a young woman whom, in the fullness of time, I learned I would never see again. This song was on the charts and hence the radio that summer, and it has become bound in my mind to that time. So, to a time of painful goodbyes, humble beginnings and unbridled dreams of the future, I give you Forever Autumn.