Archive | September 2014

Today is National One Hit Wonder Day?

Dog with headphones and record

Initially this blog was supposed to be a cheeky paragraph or two about the celebration of musical One Hit Wonders on the 25th of September–National One Hit Wonder Day.  I was going to keep it to citing a brief history that Steve Rosen, a music journalist, began this holiday in 1990 to pay tribute to musicians who, as the name states, had one hit that dominated the airwaves and then faded from the public eye.  I was going to cite It’s Raining Men and Who Let the Dogs Out? as prime One Hit Wonder examples.

But the more I began to think about this holiday, the more I took issue with the term One Hit Wonder.  And the extensive research I did–okay, I Googled and clicked around a little, suggests that I am right.   There is a negative connotation to the term One Hit Wonder.  It began to feel like National One Trick Pony Day.  (which to my knowledge does not exist).

The conclusion I have drawn is that One Hit Wonder Day is a bit of a  mean holiday.  Maybe it is not intentional, but still.  Because, frankly,  if you’ve got One Hit, you’ve done a better job on the music charts than I have.  After all, any musical aspirations I may have had were dashed when I was shamed by our Middle School Choir Director during eighth grade graduation rehearsals. (think Bobbie Moughan-Culp of SNL fame)

This holiday also made me question who defines success.  Sure, if the goal of each of these One Hit Wonders was hit the top of the charts like the Beatles, then hitting it once may not exactly be mission accomplished.  But if you take into account how many artists are producing music at any given time, that a person or group gets even one song to the top of the charts or to dominate the radio is a huge feat.  How could we possibly know the personal goals of these artists?

And, while I’m ranting, who knows what else these bands and artists created.  Just because their subsequent work didn’t make the mainstream doesn’t mean that it has no artistic value.  It’s kind of like the whole idea of ” if a tree falls in the woods” does it make a sound?  Well, if art hasn’t been seen by the public masses, isn’t it still art?

Rant over.

Now onto a less serious topic.  Isn’t the dog with the record adorable…yes, I’m aware he’s photoshopped, I mean, it’s not even a real album!

Happy One Hit Wonder Day!

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Hello Kitty isn’t a Cat…But that’s not All

hello-kitty-textbook

Several weeks back you may have heard that Hello Kitty, the character developed by the Japanese company Sanrio, was not a cat.  According to her company of origin, she is a British schoolgirl.   Most likely, this is not news to you.  Pardon the late reporting– I know you rely on me for the most cutting edge posting.  I will pare the excuses down to three words, potty training twins.

Anyway, the reality of Hello Kitty caused quite an uproar.  Headlines like Hello Kitty is not a Cat.  Everything is a Lie. and Hello Kitty is Not a Cat Because Nothing Makes Sense Anymore were front and center on the internet.  I had to read for myself.

For forty years, Hello Kitty had been strutting her little white stuff with that chipper bow in her hair and is actually an imposter.  A British schoolgirl in Kitty’s clothing, if you will.   Updated reports on the Huffington Post indicate that while Hello Kitty is not a cat in that she uses a litter box and eats cat food from a can, she is “the personification of a cat.”  Yes, I think we get it.  I mean, what’s next, Kermit is not a frog, he is Italian accountant?

So far, my reaction falls in line with the masses.  But, what bothers me about this event, phenomena or whatever you wish to call it has yet to be stated.  What is most striking to me is that this entire chain of internet uproar was set off by a person called a Hello Kitty Scholar.  In Vanity Fair Daily, Surprise!  Hello Kitty is not a Cat, the author refers to  Hello Kitty Scholar Christine Yano.

Wait.  Hello Kitty Scholar?  A job exists where one spends their time studying Hello Kitty?  Let’s not fool around here, Ms. Yano has quite a distinguished background,  certainly not the pedigree I would have if I were a Hello Kitty Scholar.  In my case, I’d probably still be living with my parents and sporting my high school hairdo.

Speaking of high school, where on earth was this job choice at my High School Career fair?  I can recall being guided toward teaching, nursing…but hey Jill, when you grow up, you could be a Hello Kitty Scholar–never happened.

I imagine essay topics like The Hair Bow that Never Moves, or Why doesn’t Hello Kitty have a mouth? written in bright pink ink.  Hello Kitty notebooks would have been mandatory and textbooks would have been purchased at the mall.  I know I would have remembered the day I learned about Hello Kitty as a career opportunity.

And I probably would have remembered the day I went home and told my parents that I was going to be a Hello Kitty Scholar.  My parents were pretty flexible and supportive, but I think even they would have had difficulty wrapping their minds around that one.  I guess everything turned out for the best.

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