A. The Grammys
Nominees were announced Thursday. I couldn't care less about them, but I sure do love the categories, though not all 108 of them equally, of course. My favorites, in no particular order:
Best Classical Crossover Album
Best Classical Contemporary Composition
Best Surround Sound Album
Best Remixed Recording, Non-Classical
Best Recording Package
Best Boxed Or Special Limited Edition Package
Best Polka Album
Best Hawaiian Music Album
All 8 Gospel Categories
All 7 Country Categories, but especially Instrumental
Hard Rock Performance
And the Collaboration Trio:
Best Rap/Sung Collaboration
Best Country Collaboration With Vocals
Pop Collaboration With Vocals
1. Unfortunately, there's no real way to use the Grammys as a sort of negative indicator and make money off them, the way you could have, say, sold short any business George W. Bush was ever involved in and you'd now be living on your own island. Or archipelago, even. The most you can be assured of is whoever wins Best New Artist is doomed.
2. I have never seen a Grammy telecast. Not one minute. I'm guessing it's a lot like the Tonys, except that the phony pasted-on smiles are obtained without a prescription.
B. Rachael Ray
SANTA MONICA, Calif., Dec. 5 /PRNewswire/ King World Productions, Inc., announced this week it has given a "firm go" to the new, daily, one-hour series featuring dynamic television personality and best-selling author Rachael Ray, already having sold the series to stations representing more than 70% of the country, according to Roger King, Chief Executive Officer, CBS Enterprises and King World.
My first impression: Awesome!
Second thoughts: I really wish they'd given her a sitcom, like Emeril.
Okay, here's the deal: I wouldn't really give Rachael Ray a second thought, except that 1) she bubbles. Nobody who bubbles should really be trusted with anything remotely resembling an art. Capital-A Art is the model here, but it's true of any creative act. James Joyce did not bubble. Paul Klee was not a bubbler. Nor Segovia. Christopher Wren, Giotto, Stravinsky, none of those guys so much as bubbed. Bubbling is possible only when one just doesn't get it. People who bubble have houses decorated with that sky-blue-on-white-and-lots-of-dried-garland "country" look, and they put cement geese in the front yard and dress them in bonnets, and they generally wear enough fragrance to make you wonder if they've got gangrene but have bravely vowed to remain cheerful regardless. Bubbling, aka dynamic television personality, is no doubt a huge selling point when it comes to hosting a daily, one-hour, soul-stealing chat show, and I wish her well. I'm not even personally opposed to that 30-minute meal schtick, but someone at the Food Network should have known enough not to give her a show where she had to demonstrate that she had no idea how to hold a wineglass, let alone what to say about wine. Leave that stuff to the terminally embittered. Embitterment is part of the initiation into genuine culture. There's a limited supply of that sort of thing, but we'll never run out of chronic enthusers. 2) When she's not saying "Awesome!!" or "Yummy!!" (her normal tone of voice is two-exclamation-points) she's jargonizing some perfectly good English word or phrase and liberally seasoning with Sta-Kute™, the C-student's lowfat substitute for reading comprehension. "Veggies". Yuck. Do you eat "Chickies"? "Rack of Lamies"? Perhaps a nice "hor-dervie" to begin the meal? Some proscuitties with mellies? No wonder babies barf so much. And Extra-Virgin Olive Oil should not be used indiscriminately, any more than you'd use classed-growth Bordeaux to make salad dressing, but if you must, call it "Extra-Virgin Olive Oil", not "EVO". "EVO" was that English band that was part chamber orchestra. Are you in such a hurry that saving five syllables means something? Life is short, but it's not that short. You'd realize that if you'd stop bubbling.
Anyway, best of luck, Ms Ray, and to all the fine folks at King World, and I've got seven months in the "How long before an old boyfriend sells nude pics to an internet porn site" in the pool.