2 min read

Friday, February 3, 2023

No time for an intro as I am moving across town this week and barely had a chance to put this together. Maybe next week I'll have some thoughts about how "packing should be illegal" and "it's past time we developed reliable teleportation technology". More likely I'll be complaining in the introduction about how "unpacking should be illegal" and "I don't see why haphazard piles of cardboard boxes don't qualify as an aesthetic choice". For now, on to the main event.

“Stacy’s Mom,” Fountains of Wayne and the Many Imaginary Hits of Adam Schlesinger

This video is a good look at the life and times of Adam Schlesinger, the brilliant songwriter who wrote, among other things, the catchy song from “That Thing You Do” and was half of the creative team behind Fountains of Wayne. I was a huge fan of Fountains of Wayne in college, and was thrilled that they finally found commercial success with “Stacy’s Mom” in 2003. Except that I found the subject matter of the song (and the music video) so incredibly stupid it made me want to crawl into a hole on their behalf. Based on this quote from Chris Collingwood, Schlesinger’s bandmate, I was not alone:

I tried to talk him out of ‘Stacy’s Mom.’ I could see exactly what was going to happen, and when it started happening in slow motion it just felt inevitable. He was too good a writer to have that be his calling card, and the success of a novelty song means that’s just what you are to the public, from that moment on forever.

Also, I’m embarrassed that I never put together that “Stacy’s Mom” was such a straightforward homage to The Cars. The Cars were also a very good band whose work I recommend.

Anyway, it turns out that "Stacy's Mom" was the beginning of the end for Fountains of Wayne as Schlesinger and Collingwood drifted away from the band and each other and pursued other interests. Then Schlesinger was one of the early Covid losses back in 2020, which was a huge and shocking bummer. Still, I enjoyed looking back at all the great work Schlesinger and Fountains of Wayne did. Perhaps you will too.

Item 2: a list

Films I have seen that were directed by Francis Ford Coppola, ranked

  1. The Godfather
  2. Apocalypse Now
  3. The Conversation
  4. The Godfather Part II
  5. Captain EO (short film)
  6. The Godfather Part III (original cut)
  7. Bram Stoker’s Dracula
  8. Jack

Item 3: a media recommendation

Clarke and Dawe - The Front Fell Off

Item 4: word of the week


Item 5: a photograph

NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope has revealed details of the Southern Ring planetary nebula that were previously hidden from astronomers. Planetary nebulae are the shells of gas and dust ejected from dying stars. Webb’s powerful infrared view brings this nebula’s second star into full view, along with exceptional structures created as the stars shape the gas and dust around them. (NASA 2022)

See ya!

Thanks for reading. See you next week.