Editor’s note by John E. Bialas: The 5 saddest songs on The Captain’s Spotify is the second part in a series about his play list. The first part was published Feb. 28 and it features disco, dance and funk. Part 2 shows The Cap’s melancholy side.
By CAPTAIN TENACIOUS Special to the Broadmoor Bureau
I can’t be the upbeat 24-hour bar-hopping guy I used to be because I’m three years away from my favorite birthday number, which is 69, and I get bombed and rejected at 66 years old more often than I did when I was 22.
The young lovelies who ignore my glances and advances mean a lot of lonely nights for me at home in Gulfport, Miss., and these are the songs on my Spotify that remind me I’m among all the lonely people.
The first song was the suggestion of Young Miami Dave, who responded to a Facebook request: What songs do you think are on The Captain’s Spotify play list?
The other picks are mine and the one stands out is “Lonesome Loser” because it reminds me of one of my worst dates.
A hippie chick went on a Little River Band date with me after I bought tickets for both of us, and even before LRB started playing the set, the girl slipped out of the auditorium with another guy. I never saw her again.
She missed out. I would have bought her a T-shirt after the concert if she had stayed with me.
That night, I was the Lonesome Loser and when I got home, I was all by myself.
Image credit: A screen grab of Eric Carmen’s “All By Myself” on YouTube.
Editor’s note by John E. Bialas: I asked Facebook friends last week to name the songs they think are on Captain Tenacious’ Spotify play list, and I enjoyed all the selections because they fit the persona of the retired sportswriter: Most Experienced Playboy in the Western World, 1979 Disco Dancing World Finalist, 1984 Pensacola Twist Contest Winner, 1994 Mississippi Breakdancing Champion, Legend in His Own Dirty Mind and Master of the Quadruple Entendre. Today, he writes about songs on his Spotify list in this quality piece of fine journalism.
By CAPTAIN TENACIOUS Special to the Broadmoor Bureau
I saw all the Facebook submissions and all of them fit my personality and taste in music.
All the selections are spot-on. They are always streaming on my Spotify, and anyone who knows me knows how much I love streaming if you get my drift.
Thirty-five songs were posted on John’s Facebook and my story features 10 of them.
I am listing each pick this way: The first name of the person who submitted the song, the song on YouTube and my comments below the video.
In 1975, the year the song came out, the ladies called me “The Hustler” for my moves on and off the dance floor.
One more from Freddie
Reminds me of the nights at the Fiesta in Biloxi, where I mixed poppers with Jacks and Cokes.
Whoa baby! Funk me!
My kicks are fast as lightning, although I’m more of a lover than a fighter.
That’s the way I like it, connotations and all.
I can relate to these words: “If morning’s echo says we’ve sinned,
it was what I wanted now.” I say this to myself lying in bed alone and thinking of a Twin Peaks girl.
This song is preparing me for my Roman and Mediterranean holiday in April, when I’ll be on my Continental Love cruise where I hope to meet the Gina Lollobrigida, the Claudia Cardinale and the Monica Vitti of my dreams.
Yep, I am a hugging and kissing fiend.
I got a gal, she lives on the block, she is kind of funky with her pink and black socks.
The ear worm I get from this song is “Stand Really Close to Me.” Close counts.
This ain’t no disco
One song that will never make my list is “Dirty Boulevard” by Lou Reed.
I remember the time I was riding in a car with a couple of other sportswriters and that song was playing. It was ear-splitting and headache-making.
I yelled, “What the hell is that crap? Change the station.”
It turns out the song was blaring from a cassette player and not the radio.
No disco! Son of a bitch!
Image credit: The Trammps perform “Disco Inferno.” This is a YouTube screen grab.
Editor’s note from John E. Bialas: I found only one person who enjoyed Fergie’s national anthem this past weekend and that person is named Captain Tenacious, the lifelong Playboy of the Mississippi Coast, sportswriting legend, Biloxi Sports Hall of Famer and future Gulfport Hall of Famer. He shares his love for Fergie in this guest commentary, a fine piece of quality journalism.
By CAPTAIN TENACIOUS Special to the Broadmoor Bureau
No matter what all the haters say, Fergie sang American history’s most coochie-coochie version of “The Star-Spangled Banner” at the NBA All-Star Game in Los Angeles on Sunday.
It was lusty. It was sultry. It was hot. Fergie was hot. She made me hot.
Forget about patriotism. It was a frisky pop-culture moment, and I wanted Fergie to be my new girlfriend.
Her hair was down and her dark dress was captivating and shoulder-baring.
Twitter people have ripped, mocked and laughed at Fergie for her jazz-inspired performance. For example:
Newsroom reinvention means the end of Sun Herald sports as we know it.
I say we and maybe I just mean me, because I’m connected to the newspaper in my hometown of Gulfport, Miss.
I retired from the Sun Herald last year after a long career in which I was a sports writer, weekend sports editor, sports page designer, slot editor, copy editor and headline writer, and since March 3, 2017, I have stayed in touch with people who work there or used to work there.
Now the sports department is down to just one man, and you, dear reader, may not be aware of that.
Sports/features editor Scott Hawkins and James Jones, the paper’s longest-tenured sports writer, were laid off two weeks ago and sports writer Patrick Ochs was moved back to the news side, where he started at the Sun Herald.
That leaves Patrick Magee as the last sports writer standing.
The reinvention includes a change made after I retired. Sun Herald page designers were assigned to the three regional hubs that serve all the McClatchy newspapers. The former Sun Herald designers work on pages for other papers and do it from the Gulfport office or at home.
The pressroom became history last month, with the newspaper being printed in Jackson instead of at the Gulfport plant. That change means earlier deadlines because Jackson is three hours away.
The emphasis is on digital and I like digital. I just wish I could remember the password for my sunherald.com subscription.
I don’t know if Magee has to take calls or read emails from digital subscribers needing password help, but I’m sure he will continue to do a fine job covering sports and I wish him all the best.
Actually, he does a fantastic job. Hell, he wrote all three stories for Wednesday’s sports front.
The picture running with this quality piece of blogging was taken outside the Chevron Mart at the corner of Railroad Street and Kelly Avenue in Gulfport on Wednesday afternoon. It must have been a good day for the Sun Herald because there were no copies inside the Chevron Mart.
I also wish Scott, James and Ochs all the best. Ochs just needs to work on improving his taste in music (Huey Lewis? Really?) and pizza (Imo’s? Yuck! ).
I’m not sure what James and Scott will do next. I have an idea for them.
They can both create the newsroom version of “Barney Miller” for Netflix.
They have years of comedic newspaper material. I can’t wait to see who might play Fish and Wojo.
I’m sick and tired of reading all the craziness involving New Orleans East Vietnamese bakery Dong Phuong and its fab king cakes.
Back when the 2018 king cake season was calm, my daughter got one at a Dong Phuong off-site in Mandeville a couple of weeks ago and said it’s the best she’s ever had.
I’m happy for her and unhappy for me.
I wanted to get one of my own on Monday so I drove from Gulfport and took scenic Old Highway 90, also known as The Jayne Mansfield Memorial Road, in hopes of getting a cream cheese king cake for $16 at 14207 Chef Menteur Highway.
I arrived at Dong Phuong at 4 p.m., walked through the front door and saw a barren bakery. Nothing. Nada. No king cakes at all. Sold out.
Son of a brioche.
I suffered in silence while taking the back roads home. Old Highway 90 runs through Lake Catherine Island, the home of fishing camps and their creative signage, and I stopped a couple of times to take pictures.
The fish camps are just minutes from Lake Pontchartrain, the Rigolets, Lake Borgne and the Biloxi Marsh, and the waters are loaded with redfish, trout, flounder, drum and sheepshead. I wish they would also be loaded with Dong Phuong cream cheese, cinnamon and pecan king cakes.
When I stopped to take pictures, I didn’t dilly dally because I feared a gator might cross the highway and attack me. I was right in the middle of a swamp or a bayou or what have you and I wanted to be home for dinner.
The next three days, the Dong Phuong sugar hit the fan.
I blame the James Beard Foundation. The bakery was named one of the winners of the James Beard America’s Classic awards on Jan. 18. Since then, the popularity of the Dong Phuong king cakes has skyrocketed to the point that demand has overwhelmed the business this week.
A Dong Phuong Facebook post Tuesday said, “We will no longer be taking online orders. King Cakes are now ONLY available for walk-in purchase at the Bakeshop through Lundi Gras!”
Lundi Gras is the Monday before Mardi Gras on Feb. 13.
I suppose that’s a good thing, because The New Orleans Advocate reported on Wednesday that “the bakery has even heard reports of people buying their king cakes to resell at inflated prices – essentially, king cake scalping.”
A $14 king cake was going for $60. I would like to see where that transaction went down. Venetian Isles? The 24/7 Fort Pike boat launch? Outside Mr. Bubbles on the West Bank?
On Thursday, Dong Phuong suspended deliveries to other retailers, such as the Mandeville business where my daughter bought her king cake.
My fondest memory of the old Gulfport Shipley doughnut shop goes all the way back to when I was a member of the Mississippi Air National Guard from 1971 to 1976.
After I checked in for weekend duty at the base in Bayou View, it was time for me and a couple of other Guardsmen to drive down the street to Shipley, where we would hang out and then ride through the neighborhood before it was time to go to lunch.
I thought the Shipley doughnuts were the best around, and my favorites were the good ol’ glazed and the paczki kind filled with chocolate or vanilla icing.
The doughnut trips were the only good thing I experienced in my long and boring National Guard career, and it’s amazing none of us was caught being MIA from working on what looked like Korean War-era generators at a time the Vietnam War was still being fought.
I was lucky our unit was never activated. I didn’t want to go to Vietnam. I was a war dodger, though never a doughnut dodger.
The Gulfport Shipley was at Hewes Avenue and Pass Road, but it’s long gone from what it is now one the city’s ugliest strip malls about one mile north of Highway 90 and the beach. When I drive past there on my way home, I always think of what it used to be like.
The Dizzy Dean fast-food restaurant was right across the street and Tastee Donuts, also a favorite, was at Courthouse Road and Pass Road.
The reason I bring up my fondest Shipley memory is that the company is looking to make a long-awaited return to the Biloxi-Gulfport market, according to a story in the Sun Herald.
I’ve been to the Shipley shop in Hattiesburg, the closest to the Mississippi Coast, and to ones in Houston and Starkville, but my last trip was in 2005.
I’m hoping my next trip will be much closer to home.
After I observed the online hysteria over the freezing weather that was in South Mississippi on Wednesday, I took a walk at 3 p.m. in our Gulfport neighborhood of Broadmoor and noticed many yards with frozen tundra.
Frozen tundra? In Broadmoor?
I’ve heard that Lambeau Field in Green Bay has it, but that could be an urban myth. I do know the Rocky Mountains have it because I saw it last summer.
It’s a rare sight here, though we got it for the even rarer second time in the same season, though the first time I was unable to see it because I was bed-ridden with the flu. That was in December, when I also missed the snow.
So it was nice to get out Wednesday for a stroll from the hood to the beach, where it was sunny and a balmy 34 degrees, a heat wave compared to the 20 degrees at noon and the record-setting low of 14 hours earlier.
During my walk, I knew it was getting warmer because a brown bagger was stumbling to the light from the shadows along Kelly Avenue. We had something in common: It was our first time outside after hours of staying inside.
This is some of the tundra I saw during my walk.
My fascination with the Broadmoor tundra is probably just the interest of one man, the man being me.
Ice scrapin’ was the frenzy that went widespread on social media. Many lifelong Southerners had to improvise when it came to scrapin’ ice from their cars and trucks because they don’t have a legit ice scraper.
My biggest fear is www.alfredojalife.com is some kind of s—hole Russian operative tracking my laptop, which I used to read the first chapter of the book, so I may just have to skim through the rest of it and then clear my history.
The third annual Gulfport Harbor Lights Winter Festival at Jones Park is beautiful and helps set the holiday mood.
I’m just not willing to pay the cash-only $10 admission fee to see the lovely display of multicolored lights. I ain’t goin’ to do it. Bah humbug!
I can do a drive-by for free. I can head west on Highway 90, look left and admire the lights or I can head east on 90, look right and admire the lights.
The show hours are 5:30 to 9:30 p.m., so I can drive by as many times as I want for four hours a night.
The festival should be free. Certainly the city and Island View Casino, two of the sponsors, can afford to pony up enough money to present a free show for all.
They should make this a Christmas gift to the Mississippi Coast.
Once you pay admission to get in Jones Park, you also have to pay if you want tickets for rides such as Santa’s Big Wheel and the Merry Go Round Carousel. It’ll cost you even more if you also want concession items.
When I’m not doing a free drive-by, I’ll stay home and be the hermit of my hood in Gulfport. If I feel like looking at Christmas lights, I’ll take a walk and enjoy my neighbors’ creative displays.
The hood has been known to have such events as Festivus and to have such attractions as Santa’s Outhouse.