Denny Sinnoh's "Akihabara Starlight"

Posts tagged ‘Rush’

Pokémon Nicknames: Hoothoot and Noctowl

ShadowBall, use your hooters ... er ... I mean, Hooters -- use ShadowBall!

ShadowBall, use your hooters … er … I mean, Hooters — use ShadowBall!

Hoothoot (in Japanese: ホーホー  “Hoho”) is the “Owl Pokémon”. The little hooter is a dual-type Normal & Flying Pokémon. Hoothoot evolves into Noctowl (in Japanese: ヨルノズク “Yorunozuku) at level 20, where it remains a Normal/Flying dual-type.

Noctowl

Thus far, there is not a mega-evolved form. Noctowl is a fun Pokémon, but it is not particularly strong. I hope that there will be a mega-evolution someday, where it might be a powerful dual Flying and Psychic type. I like to teach this mysterious bird psychic moves like “Hypnosis” in order to make your opponent sleep.

IMG_0203

My favorite name for Noctowl is “Fly-By-Night”. I more often use the music note symbol instead of a dash, because it stands for the RUSH song and album “Fly By Night”. I also like to catch them with a Timer Ball, as the clock graphic seems to fit the name, and the Rush lyrics.

Rush_-_Fly_By_Night-cover-art

I thought that “Noctowl” sounded like a sleep-aide  or cold medicine, so I named one “Nyquil”. I also named a Hoothoot “Hooterville” after the fictional rural town in the TV series “Green Acres” and “Petticoat Junction”. Even “The Beverly Hillbillies” once went to Hooterville. I named one “Drucker” after Sam Drucker, the grocer at the Hooterville general store.

IMG_0205

An obvious owl-related name would be “Hooters” after the famous chicken-wing restaurant. I think I know the reason why that wings restaurant is called “Hooters”. When one eats chicken wings which are a little too spicy, your mouth burns, and you try to fan off your mouth and say “Hooo hot …. “hooo”.

Natalie-Hooters-Uniform

Re-size to fit page.

With all those diners saying “Hooo…” so much, they probably thought that it sounded like owls, and so they might as well just call the place “Hooters”!

Ahem. Other names I might suggest include: “Nox” as a short form of “Equinox” — which might be a cool name too. I think that “Twin Peeks” is good, especially for little Hoothoot. I loved the old TV miniseries “Twin Peaks” created by director David Lynch (the hauntingly beautiful theme song is linked here). Owls were part of the symbolism in this mystery. “Peaks” might mean two glorious mounds of inspiration. but spelled as “Peeks” it refers to the eyes of the owl.

big owl eyes

Notice how the viewer is drawn in to that beautiful pair of owl-like peekers.

As seen above, “Who-Are-You” may be a fun name if you like classic rock or that CSI TV show.

I always like that Tootsie Pop commercial with Mr. Owl. I did not find much I liked on the Name Rater site, but I did like these “Dr. Who“, “Nightwing” “and “Athena“.

Owl nicknames may be a topic to explore further! There will be an owl starter Pokémon (named Rowlet) in the new game —  Pokémon Sun and Moon. It releases this November 18th.

What do you name your little hooters? Please comment!

intense owl 200

References:

http://bulbapedia.bulbagarden.net/wiki/Main_Page

http://www.serebii.net/

 

 

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KIMONOS ON MONDAY: The “Kimonos Era” of RUSH.

rush_2112_chibi_ver_by_wasawasawa-d576vgg

“Chibi” version of Alex, Neil and Geddy !

I know what you are thinking: “Denny … you know that those are DUDES, right?”

Well, way back when I was a progressive rock/heavy metal teen, one of the bands I liked was RUSH – the subject of this special kimonos post.

One of the stories in the great Rush “rockumentary” – “Beyond The Lighted Stage” is the anecdote of how the band came to wear kimono robes as part of their stage show.  Rush were a great hard rock power trio, and their working-class fans were a “T-shirt and jeans” crowd. (Include me in that.) Geddy Lee also said in BTLS that he might have preferred to just wear jeans and T-shirts onstage, but the record company wanted them to have an “image”. Rush toured with KISS and other bands who had all kinds of crazy costumes. The group was assigned to find a “look”.

Hi Fellas! The record company wanted us to change our image!

Hi Fellas! The record company wanted us to change our image!

The members wondered what type of stage get-ups they might wear, in order to look like “rock stars”. One day while they were on a concert tour, they visited a shopping district where shops sold “ethnic” goods. A Japanese shop had kimono-robes  — and the rest is history.

rush wearing kimonos

The kimono-robes looked somewhat “futuristic” I suppose, which would fit with their sci-fi “2112” rock epic. I’ve noticed on many episodes of “Star Trek” and the like, that people from all these advanced civilizations on other planets always wear ROBES. Why the robes? Does wearing a robe make you smarter? Does it show that you are technologically and philosophically advanced? Maybe in the utopian future, people are so used to robots doing all the work that they are just too lazy to find pants. Or is it that in the future only dumb people will wear jeans? (Cough) … but I digress.

Thus this explains the Rush kimono period. I know what you are going to ask: “Denny, were these ridiculous outfits scoffed at?” Of course! … and this despite being the “glam rock” period of the 1970s with its ridiculous androgyny trend.

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During the BTLS doc, Geddy Lee tells a great story about he was always made fun of by the heavy metal group UFO (link here in new window). The guys in UFO considered the kimonos “effeminate” and would call them ladies bathrobes. Lee also said that the UFO dudes would sarcastically (and in a fem-voice) would call Geddy Lee “Glee” as in “Oh, Glee are you ready for your bath now …”. UFO would open for Rush, and they would nail pink ladies bath slippers to Geddy Lee’s microphone stand. “Oh, you forgot your slippers … GLEE …”

You can get a good look at the Rush robes in this performance of “Farewell to Kings”. I actually bought this LP record, the week it came out in 1978. Oy.

Rush Kimonos made a return in 2012, but fortunately not on the guys. Although this young lady is not in Rush, she was part of the stage show for Rush’s “Clockwork Angels” 2013 tour. The group had a much more elaborate “Steampunk”-type stage show than earlier years.

SteamKimonofor RUSH tour

This is an example of the “Steampunk kimonos” the ladies in the orchestra wore. The kimono looks amazing!  (Full concert linked here.)

Starlight: From the first time I heard “Check out this Rush album”?

… the light will have now reached star Rho Cancri (which has 3 planets) and would also have reached star HR3259 (which has 4 planets).

KEEP ROCKIN’ IN THOSE ROBES SPACE DUDES!!!

real men wear kimonos

 

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“I Can’t Pretend a Stranger Is A Long-Awaited Friend.”

neil peart i cant pretend

Great News! “Beyond The Lighted Stage” is now streaming on Netflix! It is my favorite “Rock Documentary” of all time. I had already seen it on Netflix DVD a couple of years ago, but since then — they put it on streaming! I have watched it another three times. I even like to have it on when I do chores around the house. Having said all that, my post today is not a review of that great 2010 documentary about Canada’s progressive rock band Rush. (That film will have to be the subject of another blog.)

My topic? Well, after watching this rock-doc, I could not help but be mucho-impressed with the persona life story of band’s drummer/lyricist Neil Peart. I was greatly inspired by the interviews with him. He is (arguably) the greatest rock drummer.

Mr. Peart is a GREAT MAN – and that is not an accolade I give out very often. I would have to put him up there with Buddha, George Washington, Mr. Spock, and the guy who invented the Wendy’s Triple with Cheese (hold the mayo).

When I watched Mr. Peart, I saw a talented rock-hero, but in his flaws, I also saw a lot of myself. He is a good role-model — and not just for his expertise on the drums. I think any young person should aspire to live a life as well as he has.

The documentary shows through interviews and home movies the story of Neil joining Rush. It also shows some earlier film of him as a little boy (He was a Canadian boy who could not ice-skate very well – which he admits caused him some trouble in his life.) He was a gawky, bullied teenager. After high school he studied music and — among other things, books about Objectivism while in England but returned to Canada and earned his chops playing in local rock bands. He was working in his family’s tractor supply store when he was asked to audition for Rush – as the original Rush drummer had health problems and could not tour. Neil played like a cross between Keith Moon and John Bonham — and was of course hired.

Neil Peart is not your typical rock drummer. Mr. Peart has always been an avid reader. He is no academic egghead, yet the man is very sharp, very witty, and very astute. His literate nature led to him becoming the main lyricist for Rush. I always liked how he often employed themes from history, mythology, literature, social-economics and science fiction.  Peart lyrics are sometimes a little like J.R.R. Tolkien …and sometimes like Isaac Asimov. Admittedly, rock critics often PANNED his songs for being pretentious and/or sophomoric – perhaps comparable to an English major at a liberal arts college. This is a great injustice. Ok, some lyrics are hokey, but others are very deep, very profound — even mystical. When you look at his entire body of work, it is indeed very ambitiousparticularly considering the lyrics are for a hard rock songs! Rush songs have also “borrowed” famous phrases from literature. This is not “ripping off Shakespeare” as some have claimed. Rather, Mr.Peart has referenced certain well known phrases for context and emphasis. His songs spoke to the generation of us alienated heavy-metal kids who had just enough education to be dangerous. Think 2112 – linked here.

The two other members of Rush – singer bassist Geddy Lee and guitarist Alex Lifeson are very good about signing autographs. They like to interact with the press and the fans at these “meet and greet” events before concerts. Mr. Peart does not. He does not care for signing autographs, meeting and making small talk with fans, and has a reputation of being an anti-social sourpuss. (Yup, I know what that’s like.)

Nothing could be further from the truth. The documentary shows what a gentle, humorous and thoughtful man he is. You should do so well.

Damn, I wish I was a better writer.*

“Cast in this unlikely role
Ill-equipped to act
With insufficient tact
One must put up barriers
To keep oneself intact”

Some found N.P.’s brooding intensity to be off-putting. However, as Geddy Lee explained, “Neil is not anti-social , in fact he is very shy… He is not good at talking with fans because he is just not com-for-ta-ble.”

Neil Peart made a good point on this, at one point he said “When I was growing up I loved The Who, but I would never, ever think of going up to their hotel room after a concert and try to meet them.” The man is absolutely right. What is there to say in those situations really? Don’t be like these guys.

A poignant great part of the doc also explains what happened during a dark period of Mr. Peart’s life. One night, Neil and his wife Jacqueline were informed that their daughter Selena died in a horrific auto accident. As Mr. Peart and his wife struggled with their loss, Neil’s wife was diagnosed with cancer, and died a few months later. She lost her will to live on the night her daughter died. Peart said that his wife actually died of a “broken heart”. He called it “a slow suicide by apathy. She just didn’t care.”

Mr Peart struggled to cope. He considered himself “retired” from music.  In his grief, Neil Peart got on his motorcycle and rode. He cycled around North America. Eastern Canada to Alaska, to Baja Mexico, Belize and around again. 55,000 miles. He would just ride, as the feel of the road calmed what he called ‘his baby soul”. He was never recognized on the journey, and would be never approached when he would stop in small towns and cafés. His experience is chronicled in his book “Ghost Rider: Travels on the Healing Road” (2002).  

travels on the healing road cover

I am currently reading this and highly recommend it. I know that he is a famous musician, but I feel connected via experience to Mr. Peart. He expresses many of the same feelings I have had about travel. 

Readers: My descriptions here cannot capture the virtues of this great man.

Mr. Peart’s official web page is linked here.

Please enjoy the Rush song “Limelight” in super-HD, and featuring these great lyrics linked here.

Lyrics are discussed on the SongFacts website linked here.

* “Those who wish to be / must put aside the alienation / get on with the fascination / the real relation / the underlying theme”

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