Morning Music: What a Wonderful World

Joey Ramone - What a Wonderful WorldToday, we listen to Joey Ramone’s version of “What A Wonderful World.” The reason is because I’m thinking of trying to make some videos. I had been working on this thing called “Good, Bad, and Uglies.” But it got overly complex. The big issue is that I can write the material, but I can’t really act it — at least not without a lot of work that I don’t have time for. In addition, I have a strong tendency to make little projects turn big. For example, the first screenplay I ever wrote was supposed to be a little 2 minute joke, but within a month it was two hours long. So my video dreams all got set aside.

But last night I was Skyping with my boss and we mentioned the GIF image format and I went on a tear. I noted that everyone pronounced it with a “ga” and not a “ja.” But then GIF inventor Steve Wilhite came out and said that he always pronounced it “jif.” Well, that made absolutely no sense, because GIF is an acronym for Graphics Interchange Format, and unless Wilhite pronounces “graphics” as “jraphics,” he’s a complete loon. (Note: “giraffics” would be a wonderful word for images of giraffes.)

And then I mentioned “Linux,” which was always pronounced with a hard I. But then Linus Torvalds came out with a sound file with his Finnish accent and everyone thought, “Oh! It should be pronounced with a soft I!” But that wasn’t even true because the way he actually said it was “leenux.” Does anyone call it that? No! Should anyone call it that? Yes! People who speak Finnish should say it like that. But everyone in the English speaking world pronounces his first name “Linus” just like the Peanuts character. And that means that “Linux” should be pronounced with a hard I. But we don’t do that because people are just stupid.

I said all that in about 20 seconds. And I thought: I could just set up a camera and rant into it for hours on end about everything that I think is wrong in the universe. And then I could cut out little 20 second clips when I’m particularly “on.” Anyway, I generally started all the “Good, Bad, and Uglies” with Joey Ramone’s version of “What a Wonderful World” and then ended with the Louis Armstrong version. You can see what I mean in my video, These Are Not Very Bright Guys. Anyway, here’s the whole song:

9 thoughts on “Morning Music: What a Wonderful World

      • All I have seen of your temper is in the recorded videos like the one you did when you were angry at the copyright claims on Romantics Anonymous. You barely went above a monotone.

        • Well, the following video is more my energy level normally:

          I do love that. How many girls had he slept with? 65! I feel that way a lot where I’m supposed to cover for someone but I really have no idea what I’m supposed to do and I’m an awful liar. But anyway, take that guy as he rants about how GIF should be pronounced. I know I’m not Lewis Black. But it’s probably more colorful than you’d think.

          • I have seen that video (and showed others) and yet you never seem to get too crazy even though you were pretty excited.
            I can barely talk when I get excited-I start being unable to actually get the words out fast enough and then my brain short circuits and I have to sit down for a while.

            That is the kind of excited I am talking about.

            • Yes, well, even in that video you can see how much I stutter and say “um.” That’s why I figure I would have to shoot a lot of video to get those few minutes of ranting clarity. It isn’t that I’m angry about the way that Linux and GIF are pronounced. It’s just that it’s so stupid!

              • I did an audio impression of Christoph Waltz reading a Twins lineup card last year. I think I did 25 takes! It’s very difficult not to stumble on your prepared lines when you’re nervous about screwing up. Stumbles and all, you didn’t embarrass yourself in the slightest in that video. I think it’s something you could get pretty skilled at if you wanted.

                • Thank you. The problem is that as a writer, I know exactly what I want. I rather liked working totally in audio. When I was recording my scripts for “Rat Dog and Trodden” I go so that I would record one or two words at a time. I have built my own teleprompter. It isn’t hard. But it turns out that using a teleprompter is rather hard. I’ve never worked with it enough to get good. But the big problem with video is that as you edit it, you see yourself again and again. You notice even the smallest problems. So it’s easy just to give up. I rather like that video because I hardly tried. That extreme close-up of me before the reading was jammed in at the last minute when I realized I hadn’t set up the scene. But I shows how easy it is to make a video. I doubt that one took more than a hour total. Imagine if you had someone with some actual media training. Well, you don’t have to — there are plenty of people like that on YouTube.

  1. We don’t pronounce it Gif peanut butter or get oil changes at Giffy Lube. Although, considering the subject matter of many GIFs, GIFfy Lube might be appropriate . . .

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