Requiem for Dino

You know what bothers me about Myspace? The uncanny feeling that I'm stalking people, coupled with the more troubling feeling that no one is stalking me in return.

Now that my internet empire is in ruins, I will turn here to satiate my neverending desire to hear the sound of my own voice. Even when it's in html, it still sounds the same to me.

I haven't updated my website or my legit blog in a long time, and at this point I feel it's best to abandon them altogether. I do feel that certain posts on my old blog lost me a few job interviews, if not a few jobs. So take a look at me now...just another empty statistic. Since I just can't make the voices in my head shut up, I'm going to have to do my blogging here for the time being. It feels safe and obscure here, as though no one could find me here unless they really tried, and if they did, then enjoy yourself, you deserve it. But a word to the wise: if you take blogging seriously (and if you do, don't worry, I won't look down my nose at you), whatever you do, refrain yourself from adding the link to your blog to your resume. 'Cause they'll check it out. You'll be asking for it. Remember above all that the you being sold in a job interview is worlds apart from the real you, which like it or not the real you is getting a fair showing on your blog. Like Kenny Rogers said, "You gotta know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em."

Have you ever listened to Dean Martin's music? Have you ever watched a Dean Martin film? Ok, have you ever seen the infomercials selling tapes of "The Dean Martin Celebrity Roast" or "The Dean Martin Variety Show"? I saw Regis Philbin hawking the latter when I got out of bed this morning. I have been tempted many times to bite on these offers, and of the million different infomercials out there, these are the few that I stop and linger on whenever I encounter them. But this morning I got to thinking, what is it about Dean Martin that endures, if in fact there is anything?

First the music. Quick, name some of his songs; "That's Amore," ok, "Volare," check. What else? Well those are at least two hits, and certainly he was no one hit wonder. Take a listen to those songs, and what stands out to you? Great voice? Well there's not much wrong with it, but to these ears there's not a lot there to take with you, though certainly I always know it's him when I hear him sing. But listen to "Volare" in particular and tell me he wasn't just phoning it in. And the contrast between the ubiquitous and barbershop-perfect backing chorus appearing on most of his songs next to his own half-interested croon is often creepy, if not cringe-worthy. If forced to identify Dean Martin, I daresay that most people on the street would identify him as a "singer," but as a vocation it seems that the music of Dean Martin is quick on its way to the obscure dustbin of history.

How about the films? I'm sorry, but I can't do much better than name "Ocean's Eleven" without cheating for others...oooh, other than "Cannonball Run" I and II unfortunately I'm lost. I've heard of a bunch of these, but barring a month-long binge of Turner Classic Movies in my future I'd have to say I'm going to miss out on a lot of these. And I can say definitively I've never seen anything of his apparently legendary partership with Jerry Lewis, but if anyone can recommend one to me, be my guest.

Yet Dino does endure, and it seems that the only explanation available is the fact that, well, he was Dean Martin. He was in the Rat Pack. He wasn't nearly in the same league performance- or talent-wise than fellow charter Rat Frank Sinatra, and let's face it, he was light years away from matching the brilliance of Sammy Davis Jr, and you better believe I'm not kidding about that. One need no more evidence than from the recording known mainly as "The Summit," but here you can probably get the best evidence of Martin's legend. Here are the three of them: Sinatra, the superstar; Sammy, the super-talent; and Dean Martin as himself. Dino holds his own, and the legendary nature of this set bleeds from the speakers. Watch "Ocean's Eleven," but "The Summit" is something you can keep.

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