Saturday Night Serenade–Super Bowl Weekend

It’s Super Bowl Weekend.
I’m no football fan and I picked the Saints to go all the way, so I know you’re wondering why I even bring it up.

In my side gig (teaching English online to children in China), they define culture as food, art, and celebrations. Well, that about covers it, don’t you think?

I think that, like Thanksgiving and the 4th of July, the Super Bowl is a quintessential American cultural phenomenon, and even if you’re not a sportsfan, there’s something in it for everyone–sports, food, music, entertainment, fireworks… It’s all there.

I love that this year, the half-time show will be Jennifer Lopez and Shakira. For tonight’s song, I’ve chosen Shakira’s Whenever, Wherever, but I had a hard time deciding. Both women are gorgeous and talented, but there’s something so down-and-dirty sexy about Shakira. Call it the erotic romance novelist in me, but that’s where my decision went.

The best thing about the Super Bowl, in my opinion, are the commercials. Several have been ‘leaked’ and I’m showing you my favorite so far. On SNL back in the days of Jimmy Fallon and Rachel Dratch, they had a running bit featuring characters who were Southies, and this ad from Hyundai brings it all back with a cherry on top.
Okay, the cherry is Big Papi, but how can you resist Smaht Pahk?

We’re spending tonight getting everything ready for loaded nachos and hot wings. Tomorrow, we’ll relax in front of the television with about 100 million other people and enjoy the spectacle. Hope we bought enough wings…

Enjoy your weekend, and be sure to hug those you love.

Happy Saturday night!

Saturday Night Serenade–There’s a Point, I Promise

My friend Susan loves the movie Misery, the screen adaptation of the Stephen King novel by the same name. Given the opportunity, she’ll tell you all about why, in her opinion, it’s the best movie ever made. And she’ll give you the chance to watch it, because she carries the DVD in her car at all times, just in case she runs across someone who never saw it.

So when I started watching the second season of Hulu Original Castle Rock, I had to message her right away. If you’re a Stephen King fan, Castle Rock is exactly your speed. It’s an amalgam of many of his works woven into a creepy new storyline. And Season 2 ups the ante by giving us a little backstory on Annie Wilkes, the main character from Misery.

As the first episode opens, the soundtrack is Carly Simon’s Let the River Run, and it’s been stuck in my head ever since. It’s such a beautiful, empowering song, and the first time I ever heard it was in the classic 80s movie, Working Girl which is where this video is from.

That brings us around to date night. Odds are, the weather where you are sucks right now. We’re here at the end of January and many of us are practically snowbound. So why not pop some popcorn and curl up with Hulu and Castle Rock? Or, if you’re in the mood for lighter fare, Working Girl is currently available on HBO. Either way, you can let the river run.

I hope you’re staying warm and enjoying time with those you love. Be sure to give them a hug.

Happy Saturday night!

Interesting factoid…
In Working Girl, Kevin Spacey had a brief scene as a sexually harrassing slimeball. Turns out, it was type-casting, except that he prefers underage young men.

Saturday Night Serenade–Class of 2020 Hall of Famers

The list is out for the 2020 inductees into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and the line-up of honorees is pretty eclectic.

  • Depeche Mode
  • The Doobie Brothers
  • Whitney Houston
  • Nine Inch Nails
  • The Notorious B.I.G.
  • T. Rex

I’m only pulling a few songs, but there could be so many more. First up is Depeche Mode, and it’s kind of a nod to Mr. R–he was a big fan of new wave, while back in the day, I was more about hair bands. But Personal Jesus has a cool bass line that just worms its way into your soul. Plus, I may or may not have seen an X-rated BDSM video of this song that’s hot AF. Dig around and you might find it. 😉

Whitney Houston was an undeniable talent. Her life was such a trainwreck, and her death, an utter tragedy, but I prefer to remember her like this. How Will I Know takes me back to my college days, and it’s a sweet memory.

I can’t believe T. Rex’s Get It On is from 1971! How can that be? I still hear it all the time on classic rock radio and it’s impossible not to sing along.

The 2020 induction ceremony will be in Cleveland on Saturday, May 2, and for the first time ever, it will be broadcast LIVE on HBO. I can’t wait!

That will be a Saturday to remember, for sure. But don’t wait for May. Make this a Saturday to remember. Spend time with the ones you love and be sure to give them a hug.

Happy Saturday night!

Saturday Night Serenade–Wolf Moon

Friday, January 10, marked the first of 13 full moons for 2020. A normal year has 12 full moons, but this year there will be two in October. And it’s Leap Year. Coincidence? Hmmm…

The January full moon is called the Wolf moon in honor of the hungry wolves that once howled on the outskirts of villages back in the day, according to CNN, and they got it from the Old Farmer’s Almanac. Which, depending on your personal flavor of politics, you either believe or you don’t. Don’t get me started on politics, y’all.

I figured Can’t Fight the Moonlight by LeAnn Rimes was the perfect choice for tonight’s serenade. Plus, I couldn’t get another song out of my head, so I’ll add it to the bottom.

Living as close to the coast as we do, we pay attention to the full moons, particularly when they coincide with king tides. Things can get a little wet around here. In the interest of being informative, here are the dates and names of the 2020 full moons.

  • January 10 — Wolf moon
  • February 9 — Snow moon
  • March 9 — Worm moon
  • April 7 — Pink moon
  • May 7 — Flower moon
  • June 5 — Strawberry moon
  • July 5 — Buck moon
  • August 3 — Sturgeon moon
  • September 2 — Corn moon
  • October 1 — Harvest moon
  • October 31 — Blue moon
  • November 30 — Beaver moon
  • December 29 — Cold moon

I don’t know. Thirteen seems like a weird number of full moons. I feel like I should stock up on sage and garlic. Maybe slip into the front of a church and snag a little bottle of holy water.

I hope you’re staying nice and warm this January weekend. Be sure to hug the ones you love.

Happy Saturday night!

Saturday Night Serenade–How Ya Feeling?

Hellooooo, 2020!
2019, don’t let the doorknob drill you on the way out.

Sometimes what you need is a little attitude. And Lizzo has that down pat. I’m loving this song, Good as Hell. It’s really an anthem to every girl who’s been dumped, but sometimes it’s life in general that kicks you in the teeth.

That’s how the past year has been. But this new year is full of new possibilities. I can’t wait to see what happens.

Baby, how ya feelin’? Feelin’ good as hell!

I hope you’re staying warm this January weekend. Be sure to hug the ones you love.

Happy Saturday night!

Saturday Night Serenade–Merry Christmas!

How is it possible that Christmas is only a few days away? Weren’t we just sweltering away in the dog days of summer?

Tonight, I’m bringing a handful of my favorite songs of the season. There’s something old, something new, and somthing in between, too.

First, I can’t resist my absolute favorite by Mariah Carey. All I Want for Christmas is celebrating its 25th anniversary, and its first time at #1. And this year, Mariah has rolled out this brand-new video in honor of this momentous occasion.

I can’t resist Pentatonix, especially during the holidays, and their version of Mary, Did You Know? is a capella magic. It brings a tear to my eyes every time I hear it.

The Pogues’ Fairytale of New York gets a dusting-off by Ed Sheeran (you know I can’t resist Ed) and Anne-Marie with a notable lyric change. You know the one I mean. And the song is better for it.

Christmas Valentine by Ingrid Michaelson and Jason Mraz is one of those songs destined to be a holiday classic, and this video is adorable, too.

And finally, just to be perverse, I have to leave you with The Season’s Upon Us by Dropkick Murphys. May this family NOT be your family.

From our new digs, Mr. R and I wish you the merriest of Christmases surrounded by the ones you love. Be sure to give them a hug and tell them how much they mean to you.

Happy Saturday night!

Saturday Night Serenade–Happy Holidays!

I love Christmas music!
It’s one of my favorite parts of the whole holiday season.

This classic by Andy Williams has been swirling around in my head for days. Waaaay back in the day, we sang Happy Holiday in the varsity choir. It’s just so fun, and it brings with it such pleasant memories.

I couldn’t resist a second song tonight, though. I can never get enough Pentatonix at Christmas. This is a newer version of another holday classic.

I hope you enjoy both of them tonight. As you get ready for the holidays, be sure to hug those you love.

Happy Saturday night!

Saturday Night Serenade–Thankful

Where has the time gone? Seems like it was just summer, and here we are just days away from Thanksgiving. 2019 has been a wild year for us. We’ve battled a serious financial downturn, spent sleepless nights worrying, struggled to hang on to our house, realized we had to let it go before it pulled us under, faced the uncertainty of ‘now what‘…

Even so, I can honestly say that I’m thankful. I believe that everything happens for a reason–nothing is random or willy-nilly. There’s always something to learn, an opportunity to grow.

I’m thankful we were able to sell the house and walk away with a little money in our pockets. I’m thankful for the cute little apartment we found in a really cool neighborhood. I’m thankful for the possibilities ahead of us.

I suppose most of all, I’m thankful for us. Throughout this entire ordeal, the best thing we had going for us was each other. Turns out, we make a great team, even through thin.

So Thursday, when we sit down to Thanksgiving dinner (with my son who’s coming in from Omaha! 🙂 ), we have a ton of reasons to give thanks.

For tonight’s serenade, I had to go with Kelly Clarkson’s Thankful. I hope you enjoy it, and that your Thanksgiving is special. Be sure to hug those you love.

Happy Saturday night!

Saturday Night Serenade–Ladies’ Night

If you missed the Academy of Country Music Awards show this past week like I did, you missed some amazing performances. Thank goodness for Hulu, which has the show in its entirety. It’s just waiting for you to stream.

You don’t even have to be a country music fan to appreciate the talent assembled at this gathering. The show was hosted by country music legends Dolly Parton, Reba McIntire, and future legend Carrie Underwood. Performances included some inspired pairings like Pink with Chris Stapleton, Garth Brooks with Blake Shelton, and Kacey Musgraves with Willie Nelson singing Rainbow Connection. Don’t even get me started with Ms. Reba bringing down the house with Fancy.

But to me, the most showstopping moment of the night was the opener, a medley of classic songs, many of which were performed by the legendary ladies who made them famous. The extended production number ends with all the ladies joining together to perform Martina McBride’s Independence Day, a rousing anthem of female empowerment and a lethal warning to those who would raise their hands against their partners.

I hope you enjoy this as much as I did. Stay warm this cold November weekend. Be sure to hug those you love.

Happy Saturday night!

Saturday Night Serenade–This Takes Me Back…

Ever notice how you can hear a few notes of a song and suddenly you’re transported to a different place and time?

Mr. R and I are both fans of all kinds of music, but you could probably say that our hearts belong to the 80s. Not that we agree on the same 80s genre. I was always a fan of hair band anthems by groups like Bon Jovi and White Snake, while he preferred the cool tones of New Wave. We do a lot of teasing back and forth, but I have to admit that some of what was considered New Wave was pretty awesome.

Case in point, Der Komissar. The video above is the English version by After the Fire, but the original German version was by Falco. This song takes me back to my freshman year in college. You could hear it echoing down the hallways of the dorm, and it seemed everyone was singing it under their breath as they walked to class.

I’m including another classic, The Clash’s iconic Rock the Casbah. It’s a New Wave/punk gem, and I may or may not have witnessed Mr. R wailing it karaoke-style at a birthday party once upon a time. And a bit of alcohol may or may not have been involved.

I hope you’re staying warm this November weekend. Be sure to hug those you love.

Happy Saturday night!

P.S.–Update–Our new apartment is a couple of blocks from downtown Lake Worth, a genuine small town just south of West Palm Beach. Today we walked up to the main drag to watch the annual Veteran’s Day parade. There’s a lot to love about living in a small town. I can’t wait for the Christmas parade!