First of all, a little housekeeping. Konichi-wa, Japan, and thank you for sharing the fruits of your automotive and cultural labors, and yes, I DO mean manga, anime, and the Power Rangers. Actually,the Mighty Morphers are mostly American, Haim Saban, who co-created the English language version and repurchased it from Disney, is Israeli and works out of L.A., and every season from "Power Rangers Ninja Storm" (2003) to "Power Rangers Megaforce" (since 2012) has been filmed in New Zealand, a country that applauds the Power kids for fighting for truth,justice, and the Kiwi way (actually the Kiwi film industry),but believes they're a bad influence on impressionable Kiwi kids and MUST remind the little anklebiters to NOT attempt anything Rangeresque at home. (I love you, you're perfect, now stop telling the kids it's OK to karate-kick their Aunt Matilda.) OTHER THAN THAT, keep the kitsch coming! MEAN IT! (A few years ago, I visited the prestigious Tramwell Crow museum of Oriental art in beautiful Dallas and purchased a book on the art of Tokyo. I told the nice lady I would like to visit your exciting capital city and she said, "Good luck with that, pal!" A guy can dream, can't he?)
Second of all, how did y'all like the actual weather report in my last post? I promise you, THAT post is the bluest this blog is EVER gonna get! (Apologies for not plugging it with my usual panache, but it IS available on many of these fine ISP's. Just scroll down right after this particular post and there it is, but get the kids out of the room before you hit that arrow!)
Unless you've been lurking in the wilds of Borneo, you're no doubt aware that Super Bowl XLVIII will be played next week at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, and the other sports leagues (and Broadway shows, such as the "War and Peace" semi-spoof "The Great Comet of 1812", which is offering deep discounts) are pulling out all the stops to make this a truly super week for residents and visitors alike. One such example happened today as historic Yankee Stadium hosted its FIRST EVER hockey game, part of the NHL Stadium Series presented by Coors Light, and starring my beloved New York Rangers (YAY!) and the New Jersey Devils (BOO!) Although I'm proud to be a Ranger fan, I also pride myself on having the good sense to NOT schlep out to the 21-degree borough of the Bronx (10 with the wind chill) and work out at my nice heated gym (24 Hour Fitness Derek Jeter, by the way, which is run by the Yankee captain himself) while watching the game on NBC. Call me a traitor, but I think NBC gave me the best seat in the house as the Broadway Blueshirts came from behind to exorcise the Devils by a tremendous 7-3 margin. Not a bad warm-up for the sports world's marquee event, huh?
Another thing I would like to thank Japan for, although I kinda discovered it pretty late, is the pop career of a certain Alyssa Jayne Milano. YEP, the same Alyssa Milano who showed Tony Danza "Who's The Boss," lived in Hollywood's steamiest address on "Melrose Place," "Charmed" us all as one of the three most powerful witches in San Francisco, put more simmer in last summer as one of four "Mistresses," and is the current host of Lifetime's PROJECT RUNWAY ALL-STARS. Anywho, the prestigious Marubeni company asked Alyssa to sing a song for a spaghetti sauce commercial, and her dad Tom and their friend Joey Carbone, better known for the theme to IT'S GARRY SHANDLING'S SHOW, put together a poppy little ditty called "Look In My Heart," and although it was no great challenge to established teen queens Debbie Gibson, Tiffany, and Martika,it DID sell a lot of spaghetti sauce, which led to a veritable plethora of hit singles (big in Japan, but not so much over HERE) such as "What A Feeling," "Straight To The Top," "Happiness" and "Do You See Me?" I got some of her CD's on Amazon, and although they weren't classics, they were still fun in their own way. The reason why I bring up Alyssa's pop career is because one of her pet projects is designing official team apparel for ladies that isn't locked into what many feel is the "pink princess" stereotype, and she'll be at the Modell's Sporting Goods on Times Square a/k/a Super Bowl Boulevard this coming Saturday from 8 to 12 noon, and guess who plans to stop by? How did you guess? Anyways, look forward to a complete report on my close encounter of the Charmed kind with the amazing Alyssa Milano.
Finally, I would like to say adios to an old friend, Luis Avalos, who left this world this weekend at the tender age of 67. Although not as well known as Bill Cosby and Rita Moreno, his castmates on the original Electric Company on PBS, he was a celebrity in the eyes of many beginning readers who used the show to supplement their training in reading proficiency. After the Company went out of business, he moved to San Antonio, the home of the bilingual kidvid show CARRASCOLENDAS, where he played Cleofas the alley cat, who was the best friend of clumsy but lovable lion Agapito, who many claim was inspired by Big Bird. Luis, Cleofas, and his other characters, will all be missed.
Until my next report from Super Bowl Week in chilly New York...