This week’s semi-quarterly Mid-Week Magazine features the following:

A News Update on the Presidential Race

A Poem with commentary

A hats off to Rolling Stones with a Bumbas Maybank cover of Love in Vain

An advertisement for one of Stephen Baum’s books

A Consumer Corner Report on the 99 Cents Store

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News Update:

In 1984 George Orwell predicted a constant state of war – manufactured by the monolithic System in order to control the masses. I’m not sure of their motivation, but recent U.S. governments have generally upheld the necessity for nearly constant military interventions all over the globe. War, including the so-called War on Terror, keeps everyone distracted, on their toes. Naturally, foreign policy, works to insure the outbreaks of more and more wars.

In the U.S., we are the beneficiaries of not only a constant state of war, but, thanks to over-eager media coverage, we also receive a nearly constant state of electioneering. Yikes! The race for President is on. And picking up steam, as a slew of Republican Bozos scamper and scrape for attention. It seems like a joke, but those guys, each and every one of them, thinks they are presidential timber. On the Democratic side, perhaps we will see a real race/debate if Bernie Sanders and perhaps some others can make a serious run. Hillary Clinton has it all thought out, and apparently wrapped up. She is working on her image fastidiously, towing the line laid out for her by her campaign staff, which is somehow sad to see. The race will be the major news story for the next year and a half. Yikes! Yikes again!

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A poem on idealism:

A Prayer

Lord,

Save us

from our dreams

A comment on the above poem

“Whattaya mean, Bumba? It’s good to have dreams. People need ideals. They need their dreams.”

“Perhaps I’m a cynical bastard….”

“No perhaps there Bumba.”

“OK. So I’m not a big fan of idealism. I’m a fan of the truth. I don’t like seeing the world through rose-colored glasses. I don’t like pie-in-the-sky promises, lazy pipedreams, false images, icons, advertisements, all the isms, most of the religious world, and you can throw in all those pictures of cats too.”

“OK, Bumba, what about Plato?”

” Ah, the search for the truth. Plato’s ideal is something else and there are no isms attached to it. Plato’s Ideal is Reality, the great hidden reality that underrlies all we see. The true light. Something abstract and transcendant.”

“Yeah….Well you’re still one cynical bastard.”

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MUSIC CORNER

Here’s to the Rolling Stones! Hey! Hurray for the Stones. They’ve launched another American tour, just as they’ve re-recorded and re-released the Sticky Fingers record, which is surely one of their best ones.

Here’s a Stones cover done by Bumba and Maybank last week. I think it was on the Let It Bleed album, though, and it was written not by Jagger/Richards but by the blues giant. Robert Johnson. images-2However I learned the song from the Stones record. It tells a poignant story: a goodbye scene, it has a train in it, it’s fun to play and sing along, and, you guessed it, it’s Love In Vain.

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Here’s an advertisement for my book. Click on the photo, or go to the Bumba Books page for info.

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CONSUMER CORNER

Here’s to the bargain hunter’ paradise: the 99 cent store, where bargain basement, but decent enough merchandise, often it’s even the identical product they have in the supermarket! are offered at half, sometimes a third of the price. In terms of consumer awareness, the 99 cent stores have been highly educational. We shoppers didn’t realize just how badly we were being ripped off.

The first 99 cents store, which is located on 6 th St. just around the corner from the one pictured below, opened in 1982. Dave Gold, a retailer who lived in the neighborhood, founded the store and quickly built the 99 cent store into a huge corporation, which went public in the nineties and which sold in 2011, after Dave’s death, for $1.5 billion.

Hats off to the 99 cents only store, a venerable and venerated Los Angeles institution. To our great sorrow and disappointment, the 99 cents store now sells things for over a dollar. The packages are also smaller than they used to be. But generally they try to stick to the 99 cents standard.

The stores are perhaps a bit more hectic and way busier than most. It’s not a store for the creme de la creme of LA society, which is fine with me. But overall, like I said, everybody likes the 99cents store. Everybody has their favorite 99 cents items. For me it’s the pretzels, the LED flashlights, not to mention the dollar watermelons etc……All items that cost double at the pharmacy or super.

So a hearty 99 thanks to the 99 cents store.image

And a good week to all.

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