Rocci Fisch

Random Thoughts

Rocci Fisch watches what's out there and has a lot to say about it. "Random Thoughts" is a quick-read, running commentary column which features his observations about the news, pop culture and the media, zested up with Rocci's unique humor.

Pretentious

October 21, 2012
  1. . . . The Brad Pitt TV ad for Chanel #5 perfume.

  2. . . . He’s the new face of the “eau de parfum.” Gimme a Break!

  3. . . . It’s arty. Done in black and white. The lighting keeps changing dramatically, like the wind blowing in.

  4. . . . Mr. Pitt, still sporting his long tresses and the Van Dyke facial hair thing going on – mustachio and goatee. But the look is not sloppy or dirty. It’s just casually, clean-cut Brad.

  5. . . . WHAT HE SAYS: “It’s not a journey [Overused word]. Every journey ends but we go on. The world turns and we turn with it. Plans disappear. Dreams take over. But wherever I go there you are. My luck, my fate, my fortune. Chanel #5 . . . Inevitable.”

  6. . . . Shakespeare?

  7. . . . He’s pensive. He’s pondering. He’s philosophizing.

  8. . . . He’s an artist. He’s shy. He’s tender. He’s vulnerable.

  9. . . . He looks up; he looks down; he looks in the distance; he looks straight into the camera – straight into your eyes.

  10. . . . Are women swooning, fainting?

  11. . . . He’s disarming.

  12. . . . Chanel makes a cologne for “homme” (men, for crissakes). Why isn’t he advertising that instead of being wussie-ish?

  13. . . . He’s being used by the company to lure the gals and mature women in, that’s why. He’s a sexual ploy.

  14. . . . MY ADVICE. Ah, just go out a buy some musk off a street vendor and be done with it.

  15. The other night President Obama and Mitt Romney each spoke at the Alfred E. Newman . . . er, I mean the Alfred E. Smith, Memorial Foundation Dinner held at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York.

  16. . . . It’s was a funny night, with each candidate making light-hearted jokes and exchanging barbs about each other. The night was full of laughs.

  17. . . . And full of media. Katie Couric was sitting down right next to the podium and seemed to be enjoying herself. The New York Daily News reported that she was tweeting while Barack and Mitt were being comedians. She even impolitely tweeted pictures.

  18. . . . It was star-studded up there on the dais: Chris Matthews, Maria Bartiromo, Roger Ailes (Fox News), Al Gore. All a _ _ kissers.

  19. NEW TERM COINED. You might have a case of “Romnesia,” Obama said Friday on the campaign trail in Virginia, referring to his opponent “forgetting what his own positions are,” and saying “ . . . he’s changing up so much and backtracking and sidestepping. We’ve got to . . . name this condition he’s going through. I think . . . it’s called ‘Romnesia.’”

  20. . . . Clever.

  21. GENERAL QUESTION. How much faster can Florida politician Marco Rubio (R) – the one that supposedly was a frontrunning VP candidate before Romney chose Paul Ryan -- talk? He’s always got so much to say. He squeezes it all in.

  22. . . . He should be aTV talk show host. They never slow down.

  23. . . . NEW ALBUM (CD). Barbra Streisand’s Release Me,” the title a play on words indicating the collection is a group of songs previously unreleased, “spanning her entire career from 1963 through today,” says her website (barbrastreisand.com)

  24. . . . They’re from her “private music vault.”

  25. . . . Good liner notes. Not that great an album.

  26. . . . I was disappointed because there’s not that much from her early, early career -- things she recorded back in the 60s. That’s when she was really unique and before her voice became like “butter” -- back when she was edgy and dramatic and before she got smooth.

  27. . . . Only two songs from that decade: a cover of “Willow Weep for Me” (’67) and “Lost in Wonderland” (’68) and neither is done in her original, individual style.

  28. . . . The rest is stuff from 1970, ’73, ’77, ’85, ’88, 2011 and 2012.

  29. . . . How vault-ish are the ones from 2011 and 2012?

  30. . . . I’m sure it’ll sell large but for true aficionados it’s a disappointment.

  31. . . . ONE MORE THING. It’s boring.

  32. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said on CNN’s State of the Union (hosted by Candy Crowley – she doesn’t talk fast -- Sunday that Benghazi (Libya), where U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed on Sept. 11 (this year), was a death trap.

  33. . . . Sounds like it was.

  34. HEARD IT. Car maker Hyundai has a TV ad out that uses Major Lance’s Um, Um, Um, Um, Um, Um” (1964, on OKeh Records) song in it. That’s an obscure choice for a car commercial and a good one, I might add.

  35. . . . Lance is best known for his hit, “The Monkey Time,” which also became a “dance craze” in 1963.

  36. . . . Both songs and much of Lance’s outpout was written by the great Curtis Mayfield who pioneered what came to be known as the “Chicago Sound.”

  37. RECKLESS JOURNALISM? The Washington Post on Friday printed the names (in a photo caption) of an Arab woman (with another woman) and her husband, who was killed in Awamiya (Saudi Arabia) while he was protesting “the shooting and arrest of a Shiite cleric” in July, on the front page of the paper.

  38. . . . Isn’t that putting her in jeopardy? Was it necessary to identify her, lift the veil, so to speak?

  39. . . . How safe is she now?

  40. . . . Will officials over there go after her?

  41. . . . Who’s gonna take responsibility for that?

  42. NEWSWEEK DEATH. The newsweekly is stopping the presses and going all digital (except for some editions in other countries) after 80 years, another victim of the modern-age Internet.

  43. . . . Chuck Todd of NBC said “Nobody under 45 cares. What weekly in their right mind will continue to print every week? I assume all weeklies will disappear in print in the next decade. They will all become all digital,” he told FishbowlDC, a daily blog about politics and media.

  44. . . . Thanks for your observances and predictions.

  45. . . . And Dylan Byers of Politico had this to say about editor-in-chief Tina Brown: “Thanks to Brown, the final months of the once venerable 80-year-old print magazine will be remembered for a series of shock-and-awe covers and sensational stories that showcased Brown’s penchant for stirring up controversy in an attempt to boost brand recognition and newsstand sales.

  46. . . . True.

  47. . . . A digitally-aged, weird picture of Princess Diana, a photo of Obama captioned “The First Gay President,” two asparagus spears sexily dangling over a woman’s lips, a Romney picture captioned “The WIMP Factor,” others.

  48. . . . It’s economics.

  49. . . . ADVICE TO BROWN: Get thee back to The Tatler (British mag), Vanity Fair or The New Yorker and out of the news business.

  50. . . . Journalist and former critic for TV Guide and People and creator of Entertainment Weekly Jeff Jarvis said on Howard Kurtz’s Reliable Sources program Sunday that “newsstands in New York are getting to be as scarce as mailboxes,” in reference to the demise of Newsweek.

  51. . . . Why is their main completion, Time magazine, still flourishing – or is it? What magic potion does it possess?

  52. MOVIE. Argo.” Ben Affleck’s film (he directed and stars in it as Tony Mendez, a former CIA operative whose book the movie is based upon) that takes place during the Iran hostage crisis (1979) and is about the rescue of a group (6) of American diplomats who escaped to the Canadian embassy when the Shah was deposed and the Ayatollah Khomeini took over the country.

  53. . . . The thriller is absolutely sit-on-the-edge-of-your-seat, nail bitingly tension-filled throughout and Affleck does a great job of depicting the secrecy, risk and desperation of carrying out the mission.

  54. . . . The movie theater I was in was packed.

  55. . . . They do a great job of depicting the ‘70s: the hair and the way Affleck and the other characters look: the big classes, the clothes, the smoking, typewriters in the offices, cars, the era.

  56. . . . INCIDENTALLY. It reminded me of what happened in Benghazi recently in real life. It has a lot of relevance to today’s news.

  57. . . . SIDE NOTE. When I first head the movie title I thought it was about Argo Records (later renamed Cadet), a subsidiary of the famous Chicago Chess record label, which was the home of many early jazz and blues greats and later R&B artists which included Etta James (“At Last”), The Ramsey Lewis Trio (“The In Crowd”), Clarence “Frogman” Henry (“I Don’t Know Why I Love You But I Do”), The Dells (“Oh What a Nite”), and many more.

  58. . . . BACKING UP. Actually, “Argo” is the name of this movie within a movie.

  59. . . . EXPLANATION. Affleck’s character comes up with the risky idea of having the six fugitives pose as members of a film crew from the U.S. for a sci-fi movie to be filmed in Iran to be titled “Argo,” perhaps a reference to characters (Jason and the Argonauts) in Greek mythology who sailed in search of the Golden Fleece. (The builder of that ship was named Argus.)

  60. . . . The title also relates to an off-color remark that Alan Arkin, who plays Hollywood producer Lester Siegel, makes to producer John Chambers, played by John Goodman, when referring to the bogus film project they’re all making.

  61. . . . “Ah go (i.e., ‘Argo’) _ _ _ _ yourself” is how it’s used a couple of times in the movie. Goodman described it to David Letterman as an old knock-knock joke.

  62. . . . The whole plan is not to be believed but the CIA buys it.

  63. ANOTHER MOVIE. The Master,” starring Joaquin Phoenix (guess he’s done being a rapper), Philip Seymour Hoffman and AmyAdams, about a World War II vet (Phoenix, as an alcoholic Freddie Quell) who returns home and struggles to adjust his life to post-war America.

  64. . . . He meets up with the leader (Hoffman as Lancaster Dodd) of a movement called The Cause, sort of cult-ish. Adams plays Dodd’s wife Peggy, who has a lot to say about how to run things.

  65. . . . It’s a good story.

  66. . . . You can’t take your eyes off Phoenix. He’s mesmerizing in his character portrayal: his facial expressions, his body language, the way he talks, his volatile temper.

  67. . . . He’s Academy Award material.

  68. . . . UH . . . Body Language (Do the Love Dance)” – The Jackson 5, off their “Moving Violation” album, on Motown Records, 1975.

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