Saturday, August 02, 2014

No Time For Boat Rides

Saturday 9: My Life
(recommended by A Day in the Life on the Farm)

 If you're not familiar with today's song, you can hear it here.

1) This song begins with the story of a man who moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career as a comic. What comedian always makes you laugh?

A. I like Bill Maher, Bill Cosby, Billy Crystal, George Carlin, Ellen DeGeneres and I'm sure there are others but those are the first that come to mind. If you haven't seen Billy Crystal's latest thing on HBO, 700 Sundays, I highly recommend it.

2) The lyrics say, "You don't need to worry about me 'cause I'm alright." Tell us about a time when you had to reassure your family or friends.

A. Unfortunately, that would be most of the month of July. I have told them I am "all right" but I'm really very tired.

3) This song was the original theme of the Tom Hanks sitcom Bosom Buddies. Tom Hanks is a direct descendant of Nancy Hanks, Abraham Lincoln's mother. Is there anyone noteworthy, celebrated or infamous in your family tree?

A. I have some Revolutionary War heroes in my family tree. My mother once told me we were distantly related to Richard Nixon but that is not one I'd want to claim. And my husband and I are fifth cousins. We didn't know that until after we were married, even though his great-aunt told us we were related. We didn't believe her at the time but after I did the research I realized she knew what she was talking about.

4) Before going solo, Billy Joel was in bands called The Echoes, The Emeralds, The Hassles and Attila. What do you think would be a good name for a band?

A. Susan Pumpernickel and the Communicators

5) Billy Joel wrote one of his most famous songs, "Just the Way You Are," for his first wife, Elizabeth. Even though they divorced more than 30 years ago, fans still demand he perform the song in concert. Do you go out of your way to listen to songs that remind you of a long-ago lost love? Or do you avoid them?

A. I've been married for almost 31 years. Whatever happened before then is long forgotten, and I never really loved anyone else anyway.

6) In 2008 Billy Joel had to return a $3,000,000 advance for his memoirs because he didn't finish them. Have you ever read a celebrity tell-all?

A. I read Find Me by Rosie O'Donnell, which was published in 2002. I reviewed it for the local newspaper. It was a stunning story, obviously, since I remember it 12 years later. I did a couple of other reviews of celebrity stories around that time but this is the only one that I remember. Celebrity books are not reading materials I generally seek out.
7) Billy Joel was in a motorcycle accident and did irreparable damage to his left thumb. Are you comfortable on a motorcycle?

A. No. My husband owns what he calls a "crotch rocket" but I think I have ridden on it once. He doesn't ride it enough to warrant owning it, in my opinion, but what do you do. Men must have their toys.

8) In addition to riding cycles, Billy enjoys sailing in Oyster Bay. Do your summer plans include time on a boat?

A. No. Unfortunately, our summer plans include lots of physical therapy for both my husband and me. No time for boat rides.

9) Billy Joel is a popular college commencement speaker. If you were asked advice from the Class of 2014, what would you say?

A. Find your passion and follow it, and forget about the money. If you are passionate about something, the money will take care of itself. You may not be rich but you will be happy, and that's more important.


  1. Your band name is adorable. And that's some very wise advice to our graduating seniors.

  2. Excellent advice. That's funny about the cousin thing. I bet there is more of that than people know of.

  3. Love the name for the band! I like Ellen DeGeneres too. Your advice is pretty solid advice.

  4. No one famous or infamous in my family tree -- so far as I know. ;-)

  5. Those are the exact comedians that are my favorites, and in that order too! I like the conversations on Bill Maher's show even better than his jokes.

    That is the advice I gave my daughter and she is working in her field (graphic designer/typesetter) and she even has her own business on the side selling her artwork, but she cannot pay her school loans back and pretty much lives in a ghetto. I have tweaked the advice to the younger daughter. I told her to forget the passion and go for a career where she can find a little something to like about it, something she doesn't hate, and where she can make enough money to support herself independently. I told her to forget the school loans and pay as you go. It might take her ten years instead of four years to get a degree, but she won't start out with fifty grand of debt there is no guarantee she will have the ability to pay back.


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