2009-12-03 / The Walrus Says

The Walrus Says

By Jim Munro
It will be a time-capsule trip back through the past 60 years for concertgoers at the Jamestown Community Chorus’ 60th anniversary concert the weekend of Dec. 12 and 13. The enthusiasm for the production is evident in the words of JCC Director B.J. Whitehouse. He says the concert will be at the community center, also known as the rec center or the U.S.O. hall, depending on the year.

B.J. says, “The world has certainly changed in the last 60 years and the music we’ve chosen will reflect those changes. The number one hit in 1949 was ‘Mule Train’ by Frankie Laine. Harry Truman was president, having ‘lost’ to Dewey the year before. (NB: The Cleveland Indians, sadly, would not win another World Series after 1948, a fact that is not lost on this Tribe fan.)

“‘South Pacific’ opened on Broadway in 1949 and has been revived on Broadway just recently. (They don’t make ‘em like they used to.) Entering the 1950s, the world was going to have to deal with the U.S.S.R., the H-bomb, Eisenhower, Khrushchev, Bobby Thompson, Sputnik, Elvis, Chuck Berry, way too many Yankee World Series wins, ‘Catch a Falling Star,’ James Dean and ‘Mr. Sandman.’

“The 1960s were the most tumultuous decade of the century. Vietnam, President Kennedy’s assassination, Martin Luther King’s march and ‘I Have a Dream’ speech, the Beatles, the Chevrolet Corvair, Woodstock, landing on the moon, ‘Hello, Dolly,’ ‘Man of LaMancha,’ ‘Fiddler on the Roof,’ the Celtics, ‘Wild Thing,’ the Newport Bridge and Richard Nixon.

“You get the idea. Seven decades and we haven’t mentioned Watergate, disco, ‘Send in the Clowns,’ Iran hostages, Saturday Night Live, MTV, personal computers, Challenger, the fall of the Berlin Wall, ‘Cats,’ boy bands, the Patriots, Celtics, Bruins and Red Sox, cell phones, 9/11, Iraq, Afghanistan and President Obama.

“It’s been a wild ride. There will be a time-line display in the lobby, where audience members can write in auspicious moments of the last 60 years, perhaps a marriage, a passing or the birth of a child. We hope that folks will want to revisit some of the high points and not-so-high points of the last 60 years. In addition, alumni chorus members will be asked to join us to sing Handel’s ‘Glory to God’ with JCC Director Emerita Ginny Eastman at the piano.”

The concerts will be on Saturday, Dec. 12, at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 13, at 3 p.m. All ticket holders will be invited to a gala reception at the PAC Club on Sunday, starting at 5:30 p.m. Tickets are $12 for general admission, and $8 for seniors and children. Call 423-1574 to reserve your tickets. They are also available at Baker’s Pharmacy, Jamestown Hardware and The Secret Garden. Visit www. jamestownri.com/chorus.

It’s going to be another wild ride. We got all misty just reading the item.


Each year about this time, letters begin arriving at the post offi ce addressed to Santa and each year, Jamestown Postmaster Charlie Burns makes sure those letters get special attention so the writers will have a reply by Christmas.

Two island youngsters, Dayna and Alden, sent their lists in early. Dayna wrote:

“Dear Santa, this is what I want for Christmas:
1. Julie doll
2. Rebecca doll
3. Snowy chic outfit
4. Honey puppy pjs
5. Doll stand
6. Starry doll carrier
7. Rebecca’s Hanykkah dress
8. Julie’s bed and bedding
9. Hair care kit for dolls
10. Rebecca’s costume chest
11. Doll hair brush
12. Sparkly hair pick

p.s. It is ok if you don’t get all this stuff

p.p.s. All these things are American girl”
Alden’s list:
Real science stuff
Dragon castle (bad castle)
Get good castle back
Dragon castle choo choo
Telephone (real, not fake)
Need a charger for phone (like
Polaroid camera (paper with
pictures come out)
“Dear Santa, Thank you for the
presents so much.”


St. Mark Church invites one and all to its annual Christmas Festival to be held in the church hall on Saturday, Dec. 5, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The St. Mark Women’s Club’s Taste and See CafĂ© will serve lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Added to the menu this year will be the famous Woonsocket Dynamites to go along with soups, chowders, sandwiches, snacks and desserts. During lunch, enjoy Christmas music and traditional Irish tunes played and sung by the popular group “Celtic Gathering.”

The bake table, well known for its disappearing goodies, includes favorites such as Irish soda bread, cakes, pies, cookies, candies and some special family recipes from the church cookbook.

All kinds of festive greenery arrangements and plants will be available, along with gift baskets, new gift items, attic treasures, auctions and raffles, including a chance at a flat-screen HD TV. Take a chance at the popular “Luck O’ the Irish” game. The women of the parish have been busy crafting knitted goods, jewelry and handmade items for all ages.


The Beavertail Lighthouse Museum Association will hold its annual holiday Open House on Sunday, Dec. 6, from 1 to 3 p.m. at the lighthouse. Association president Richard Sullivan says, “The gift shop will be stocked for holiday purchases, plus a variety of homemade goodies for tasting. The holiday decorations are always special and not to be missed.”


So, what was Joe Thomas’ theme song? John A. Murphy, who posed the question, writes, “The theme song of Joe Thomas’ great show (first on 55 AM WPAW, and later on a number of other stations) was...drum roll, please…Desiree, by the Charts. He was the greatest competition that DJ Chuck Stevens had.”

However, Larry Lewis writes, “Great question from John A. Murphy on radio DJ Joe Thomas. It was fun to research this one. Joe’s theme was “Las Vegas,” a tune released on the old Kapp label by Vic Schone’s orchestra. Joe had worked for a time in that city, prior to his many on-air stints in R.I., including WPRO.

“Not so lucky coming up with his real name, but it was apparently Slavic, ending with ‘enko.’ Wishing a very merry Christmas to everyone on the island. Looking forward to the free grub at the hardware store on Christmas Eve!”


It must be Christmas, Atlantic Lawn and Garden’s beautiful white tree on Narragansett Avenue across from the PAC Club sets the tone for the yule season.


Responding to our lyrics’ poser, Bay Voyage worker and former islander Charlie Cavanaugh writes, “I fondly recall listening to that song, ‘Cocktails for Two,’ the Spike Jones version, a lot during the last century. It used to drive my family crazy because I played it so much. Funny, the record (yes, the plastic kind) disappeared one day and never turned up.”

Peter C. Pemantell says, “How could we possibly forget Spike Jones and ‘Hello Mother, Hello Father’ and this time of year, ‘All I want for Christmas’ and ‘Cocktails for Two.’”

Bob Kinder and Barbara-Ann MacIntosh know the song and Barbara-Ann added, “Spike Jones did some funny/silly ‘stuff.’”

“In some secluded rendezvous that overlooks the avenue

With someone sharing a delighful chat

Of this and that and cocktails for two.”


Tired of Christmas yet? How about “green?”


In answer to Peter’s question last week regarding the name of the island’s highway superintendent in the 1950s, Pres Froberg says it was a Mr. Gill.


Help the animals and cut down on your shopping list at the same time at the Potter League for Animals’ Critter Glitter holiday sale on Saturday, Dec. 5, and Sunday, Dec. 13, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the League, 87 Oliphant Ln., Middletown. Check out the sequin fashion jewelry featuring necklaces, bracelets, pins and earrings at 50 to 80% off retail. There are also home accessories from Edgar Berebi. A preview party will be held tomorrow, Dec. 4, from 5 to 8 p.m. Refreshments will be served and there is a $25 donation at the door. RSVP Laura, 846-0592, ext. 116.


Last night’s full moon was the Cold Moon or the Moon Before Yule. Victor Richardson tells us that if you missed it, there is another full moon this month. When there are two such moons within a month, the second is a Blue Moon. This one occurs at 2:13 EST on Dec. 31. It will be the first Blue Moon for the Americas since May, 2007. Maureen Lapinski reports that it is the Long Night’s Moon.

Who sang “Blue Moon?”

Victor says another interesting celestial happening this month is a total lunar eclipse on Dec. 21 at 3 a.m. EST. The eclipse occurs less than 24 hours before the winter solstice. The adjacent winter stars will appear stunning, standing out much more clearly than they normally would.

*** Be true!


Call in your stuff to 423-0383 or 829-2760 or e-mail us at jtnwalrus@ hotmail .com.

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