July 11th, 2004


Forget Pavement, forget Bruce Springsteen -- hell, forget The Beatles. After watching Mary Poppins with Skylar and her nana today, I have conclusively determined that the biggest musical influence on my life has been the songwriting team of brothers Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman.

What are they responsible for, you ask?

How about the music for Mary Poppins, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, the animated Charlotte's Web, The Aristocrats, Snoopy Come Home, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Bedknobs and Broomsticks, The Jungle Book, most of The Tigger Movie, the song "You're Sixteen," which topped the Billboard charts twice, and, yes, "It's a Small World."

Their relative absence from Broadway seems to have doomed them to the well-paid hiding in the light that befell so many Hollywood composers. I mean, Rogers and Hammerstein were incredible songwriters, but it's hard to imagine songs with more barbs than the ones the Shermans penned. Believe me, my daughter is so caught up in their music that she may never be able to extricate herself.

I should mention, in closing, that many of their best-known songs must have played a major role in my early years as well, since I know that The Jungle Book and Winnie the Pooh were favorites of mine and I remember the music from Mary Poppins running through my head too.

Yes, I've liked showtunes ever since. Just like Maurice on Northern Exposure.
  • Current Music
    another mental chorus of "It's a jolly holiday with Mary. . ."


Skylar just woke up. We're off to Phoenix to get Kim at the airport. Looks like she'll be doing some reading before we get there:

We're on our way!

  • Current Music
    Porchlight - Neko Case - Furnace Room Lullaby


I just took one of those online IQ tests that bombard you from pop-up windows. And the same thing happened tonight that happened when I took the IQ test in kindergarten: I got bored with the more mathy questions and picked answers rather arbitrarily in order to move on.

Predictably, I suppose, I got the same damned score exactly as I did at age 5. At least I'm not any dumber. But I haven't become a genius either, sadly. . . :-(

I know how flawed traditional IQ tests are, so I'm processing the experience with the salt shaker ready for action. Still, the profile generated from my test results fits me pretty accurately:
Your Intellectual Type is Insightful Linguist. This means you are highly intelligent and have the natural fluency of a writer and the visual and spatial strengths of an artist. Those skills contribute to your creative and expressive mind.
Why don't they just say that I'm terrible at math?
  • Current Music
    Waltz #2 (Xo) - Elliott Smith - XO