Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sunday Sermon: Good Samaritan

  But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
  In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead.  A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side.  So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side.  But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him.  He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’
    “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”
  The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”
   Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”

Luke 10: 29-37

Friday, October 28, 2011

Friday Flicks: Psycho

Psycho (1960) is the last movie in my Spooky October series. But I've saved the best for last. This is my absolute favorite Hitchcock film. From the cast, to the script, art direction, cinematography and music, Psycho is brilliant.

If you're the kind of person who looks for symbolism and visual motifs in films, this is the movie for you. Look for the reflected image of Norman on the porch when he gives Marion the sandwich, depicting his dual personality. Marion is wearing a white bra and slip in the hotel with Sam and then later is seen wearing a black bra and slip at her apatment and the Bates Motel, depicting her change from law-abiding citizen to thief. Also, the other secretary is played by Hitch's daughter Patricia.

LILA CRANE: I can handle a sick old woman!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Tuesday Tunes: The Times They Are A-Changin'

I didn't become a serious listener to Bob Dylan until hubby introduced me to his music in 1975 when I was 18. Before that I'd only heard "Blowin' in the Wind" on the radio. I like his folk period best. and this album is my favorite -- just Dylan, acoustic guitar and harmonica. He is a natural story-teller and his songs are poems set to music. Even now when I listen to this album, I am transported to another place and time.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Graveyard Party

I write song parodies when the Muse strikes. This was originally posted on my blog in 2007. It was campaign season and John McCain was front runner in the primaries at the time. I wanted to tell a story about Conservative Republican Goths. Sung to the tune of Ricky Neslon's "Garden Party."
"Graveyard Party"
 by Luana Krause
I went to a graveyard party to reminisce with my old friends
A chance to share goth memories, and quote Anne Rice again
When I got to the graveyard party, they all knew my name
But I didn’t recognize them, they didn’t look the same

No clove cigarettes, black fingernails or chains
You see, their tattoos said “Hummers Rule,” and they voted for McCain

Goths arrived from miles around, everyone that I knew
But Spider flashed her wedding ring and raved about her “dude”
And sitting on a headstone, scribbling little notes
Crow was on his laptop, checking NASDAQ quotes

No clove cigarettes, black fingernails or chains
You see, their tattoos said “Hummers Rule,” and they voted for McCain

Just as I was leaving, I saw my old girlfriend
Ophelia said, “How are you?” and gently took my hand
Her corpse-like deathly pallor really turned me on
But she just wanted a donation for a Rush Limbaugh telethon

No clove cigarettes, black fingernails or chains
You see, their tattoos said “Hummers Rule,” and they voted for McCain

Billy Collins

I discovered Billy Collins several years ago when I read The Trouble with Poetry: And Other Poems. It caught my eye at Barnes & Noble because it had this captivating image of a black bear on the cover. (Yes, you can judge a book by its cover...this one was FABULOUS!)

I bought the book and read the whole thing in one afternoon. And then I read it again. And again. His poetry is contemporary, moving, funny and sublime. His powerful imagery gently leads you into the world he has created.

Introduction To Poetry

I ask them to take a poem
and hold it up to the light
like a color slide

or press an ear against its hive.

I say drop a mouse into a poem
and watch him probe his way out,

or walk inside the poem's room
and feel the walls for a light switch.

I want them to waterski
across the surface of a poem
waving at the author's name on the shore.

But all they want to do
is tie the poem to a chair with rope
and torture a confession out of it.

They begin beating it with a hose
to find out what it really means.”
Billy Collins

Friday, October 21, 2011

Friday Flicks: Rosemary's Baby

Rosemary's Baby (1968) is the third movie in my Spooky October series and was inspired by the novel by Ira Levin. It's a "horror story of Satanism and the occult set in modern-day Manhattan." Levin also wrote "The Stepford Wives." Stephen King described Levin as "the Swiss watchmaker of suspense novels, he makes what the rest of us do look like cheap watchmakers in drugstores."

Friday, October 14, 2011

Friday Flicks: Cujo

Cujo (1983) is the second movie in my Spooky October series. I've always been a fan of Stephen King's stories. I didn't actually watch this movie until a couple of years after its release when I saw it on video. My son Luke was the same age as the boy in the movie and even looked like the kid. I also drove a Pinto that was always breaking down. I could SO relate to this mom!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Vivian Maier Photographer

So I'm looking through my American Photo magazine November/December issue and find this series of photographs by Vivian Maier. I could NOT believe my eyes. These are the most beautiful photographs I've ever seen. I read the article and found out that this woman had shot an estimated 100,000 photos from the early 1950s until the mid-1990s. She died in 2009 at the age of 83. No one had ever heard of her. She was a nanny for a wealthy family in New York City and a very private person.

According to the article, there is no evidence that she studied photography formally. Her work was discovered in 2007 by John Maloof, a self-described "third-generation flea-market seller." He found some of her photos in a commercial storage locker being auctioned. He paid $400 for a box of more than 30,000 negatives.

Check out her work at the Vivian Maier website.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Tuesday Tunes: Bach A Minor Invention

I've been working on this piece of music for years. And I'm still not good enough to record myself playing. I found this video online just so you can see what I have to deal with. Bach's music is inspiring, brilliant and absolutely beautiful.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Friday Flicks: The Others

It's October and that means ghosts, goblins, witches and all that spooky jazz. This month's Friday Flicks will feature my Spooky October series of must-see scary movies. My first choice is The Others (2001) starring Nicole Kidman. A creepy story with a wild twist at the end.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Afro-Blue Jazz Choir

I heard this group on The Sing-Off this season and they are amazing. Check out their music.

American Boy

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Tueday Tunes: Blue Skies

The amazing Jazz singer, Ella Fitzgerald, sings Blue Skies. Listen for her super cool skat singing.