"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Ya Don’t Stop


There is an old Yiddish routine between a man and woman that my dad and his sister used to do. That’s where my twin sister Sam and I learned to do it.

It goes like this:

“You Dancin?”

“You askin’?”

“I’m askin’ if you’re dancin’.”

“I’m dancin’ if you’re askin.'”

“So I’m askin.'”

“So I’m dancin.'”

I had dancing* on the brain tonight after watching Robinson Cano turn an elegant double play in the seventh inning. With a man on first and one out, Cano fielded a ground ball to his right, took a few steps to the bag and falling away, flipped the ball to first. Cano is one of the few players in the league that can “flip” a ball across the field with such ease and still put a good amount of mustered on the throw. It was a remarkably quick and agile play, over in an eye-blink, but smooth like butter.

And that wasn’t the only thing that was smooth on another smooth night for the Yankees. CC Sabathia was a load. Again. The Big Fella went seven innings and allowed one run on seven hits and a walk. He struck out nine. And Alex Rodriguez was more money than money, breaking up a 1-1 game in the seventh with a two run single, and then adding to a 3-2 lead with another two-run base hit in the ninth, giving him 75 RBI on the year. His first hit a few innings earlier was the 2,500 of his career. 

Rodriguez’s RBI in the ninth was just the start. The Yanks scored seven runs in all, good enough for a 10-2  win, and another series sweep. The Yanks have won ten straight against the Orioles. They are a big inning waiting to happen. Tonight, the Bombers had 17 hits in all, 4 by Johnny Damon, 2 each by Nick Swisher, Robinson Cano and Melky Cabrera.

So what’s not to like?

 devil and max d

*One of the all-time jips of my childhood came when my mother and grandmother took my sister  to see Bob Fosse’s “Dancin'” on Broadway in a theater while my father and grandfather rolled my brother and me a few blocks away  to Loew’s 83rd Street to see Elliott Gould and Bill Cosby in The Devil and Max Devlin.

I had my handful of disappointing movie theater experiences as a kid–Chariots of Fire, Swing Shift, Author! Author!, Carbon Copy–but that one took the cake. Like losing Fred McGriff in the Davey Collins dump for Dale Murray.

I didn’t even like musicals but that “Dancin'” poster was everywhere in Manhattan for a few years. As a kid, I thought it was so adult and provocative. I think of it side-by-side in my mind’s eye with the Oh! Calcutta! poster.


1 RIYank   ~  Sep 2, 2009 10:56 pm

Yay, Rob!

But boo for Mariano's "stiff groin". Doesn't sound horrible, but I never like to hear anything wrong with him. They're going to give him a few days off.

2 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Sep 2, 2009 10:56 pm

Bill Cosby & Elliot Gould! Comedy Gold!

I kind of felt that way about "Oh God!" when I saw it..

3 Chyll Will   ~  Sep 2, 2009 11:22 pm

As I was scrolling down and saw Bill Cosby, I immediately thought of Leonard Part 6. I'm glad I never watched that. But I did expect a little more of Copacabana and that was on TV, which should have been my first hint.

I asked my roommate what I was disappointed with at theaters and she said Jim Carrey's Fun With Dick & Jane, and I have to agree. I was embarrassed by Me, Myself & Irene; we tried watching that with Uncle Woodrow on DVD and were compelled to turn off after the soft ice cream scene. I also somehow expected more of Dirty Dancing, but I was young...

4 SteveAmerica   ~  Sep 2, 2009 11:27 pm

That double dip by Robbie was flat out sick.

5 Paul   ~  Sep 2, 2009 11:43 pm

Your stories of NYC really make me wish I had grown up there. And that's a pretty fun little dancing ditty to play with kids. I may steal that with my own.

Did you mean mustard or mustered? I always thought it was the yellow stuff. But the other way is a nice turn of phrase.

[1] I thought the same exact thing - Crosby! Gould! Top-billing!

Oy vey.

6 Paul   ~  Sep 2, 2009 11:51 pm

By the way, my most enjoyable season since 1998. I feel really good about this team, sans Burnett. I think it's the unknown, after 1997 loss and then seeing that team come together. By 1999 I just expected them to win. Same in 2000-01. So that took away some of the enjoyment. 2005 was pretty good too with Small and Chacon but we knew it wouldn't last. I can't believe it's been almost a whole decade since they won anything. We were really spoiled, weren't we?

7 thelarmis   ~  Sep 3, 2009 12:33 am

the rough movie for me growing up was HAIR.

[5] i agree on the turn of phrase.

good day in baseball for us - we win, rangers & rays win, shit sox and halos lose. i really wish the rangers could swipe the WC, but i don't see it happening, esp with Young out at least 2 weeks and Hamilton's back flaring up in a big way...

8 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Sep 3, 2009 12:47 am

[7]Man, a scene in the movie HAIR was filmed in my house in Brooklyn! When they sing the title song and Berger goes back to Brooklyn to get money from his mother, he walks down Ave.J singing then turns into a large two family home, that's where I was born and rasied! So we always had a copy on VHS and watched it repeatedly growing up.

As kids we always cracked up at the line "Well, I wouldn't kick Mick Jagger out of bed, but no, I'm not a homosexual". Also when they crash the debutants party and dance on the table with Mrs. Garrett from "Facts of Life"...ahhh, childhood memories!

9 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Sep 3, 2009 12:51 am
10 thelarmis   ~  Sep 3, 2009 12:54 am

[8] that's crazy, bro! my mom's from brooklyn; i'm from queens. we saw it at a long island movie theater right up the street from JFK. i grew up on both the queens and LI side of the airport. the planes flew soooo close overhead, i used to try to the baseballs at 'em!!! i was always having a catch or throwing popups to myself...

man, i don't remember any specific lines in that movie. all i know is i was waaay too young to see it and it disturbed me. all i really remember is there was a naked guy and that thoroughly SUCKED!!!

other things i saw too young that bothered me were: a Buddy Hackett standup routine and Mick Fleetwood having his roadie pour beer down his throat on stage during a performance. luckily, Stevie Nicks saved it for me and began my lifelong fascination with hot blonde chicks (esp in hats!!!)...

11 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Sep 3, 2009 12:57 am

[10] You grew up near the airport..like Henry Hill in "Goodfellas"?? Ever hijack any trucks? :)

Hair the movie had some wild scenes..as a kid I never understood why Claude started halucinating in the park after eating some free "candy"...you can't explain LSD to an 8 year old!

Am sure Mick Fleetwood got up to a LOT worse back in the 70s...

12 thelarmis   ~  Sep 3, 2009 1:16 am

[11] my parents went to high school with Karen Hill. and Mickey Hart from the Dead too, though i think he was a few years younger.

man, i was always a pretty good kid, never really got into much trouble. i was either at the baseball card store, baseball field or in the basement playing drums!

hell, i still don't understand LSD!!! then again, i've never even been stoned before (shhh, don't remind OYF!!!), so what the hell do i know...? my mom did confiscate the remaining beers from my band practice in 8th grade. she counted what was left and they became hers. she checked them off a list as she drank them, making sure i didn't sneak any! : )

13 thelarmis   ~  Sep 3, 2009 1:25 am

[11] besides not hijacking any trucks, i didn't even get my license to drive until i was 19.5 years old!

my folks are still there by the airport. my brother is by the other "HAIRport" (eh eh eh!) in Queens...

14 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Sep 3, 2009 1:42 am

[12][13] I really know very little about Queens..growing up it was a big trip just to go into "the City"..(I had to explain to my lady that locals refer to Manhattan as "the City")

what's playing right now?

15 thelarmis   ~  Sep 3, 2009 1:59 am

[14] i was in a weird part of Queens, kinda like the "other side" of it, not the main part. really crappy neighborhood - Far Rockaway. everyone's heard of it 'coz of the LIRR, but it was a rather nasty hood when i was a kid. it's only gotten worse...

yeah, we call it "the Shitty" in my family! : )

at the moment, i'm giving my ears a rest. i'm solely concentrating on my solo percussion music right now. tomorrow, i have my first studio session with the post-production engineer, to do the final tweaks on my compositions, so i'm going thru them and taking notes...

16 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Sep 3, 2009 2:08 am

[15] The solo project! Man, good luck with that, can't wait to hear it. You going to play the full arsenal (marimba, tin can, moonshine jug, triangle, djembe, etc?)

Got Max Roach on right now, late-60s..awesome...

17 thelarmis   ~  Sep 3, 2009 2:15 am

[16] thanks, man - you'll definitely be getting a copy! i know you have HUGE ears, but for most folks, i don't expect them to really understand or actually like this music! i must say, i've been pleasantly surprised by the positive reaction from folks though. : )

well, the music is all finished...and has been for awhile. i'm already composing for the 2nd record. i'm just slow and this stuff takes ages to complete, as it's a labor of love and regular 'work' gets in the way. it also seems pretty universal that the debut solo cd for independent artists, like me, take a super long time to get done and out. hopefully the sophomore effort won't take as many years. we'll see...

yeah man, i pretty much pulled out the kitchen sink on this one! not much in the way of hand percussion though - it's just not my thing. i did play a little udu drum though. it's mostly marimba and drumset. but yeah: triangle, guiro, claves, castanets, tamborine, ganzas, gong, vibraslap, ratchet and on and on and on. the whole (starting) 9 !!! : )

18 thelarmis   ~  Sep 3, 2009 2:18 am

[16] Max is an absolute god!!! i remember seeing him here at the Atlanta Jazz Fest about a decade ago. he was already really old and slow. he set up a chair in the front center of the stage to do his rendition of the amazing "Mr. Hi-Hat". he dropped a stick and couldn't bend down to pick it up. he tried and tried. it felt like minutes passed before a stagehand ran out and handed the stick to Mr. Roach. it was sad. but he didn't even flinch and went right back to his solo!

i came up with my own version a few years ago and planned on having it as a video portion on my upcoming disc, but i bagged the idea. that shit is REALLY hard and you have to keep up with it regularly. i'd rather practice more musical stuff; i'm just not that showy...

19 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Sep 3, 2009 2:21 am

[17] Solo disks are always going to be more challenging, but when it's percussion..yes, that is going to take a few listens to "get" it. My ears aren't quite as huge as you may think, I can's even be in the same room as modern Country music, Broadway show tunes or any Celine Dion song! But am game for most everything else.

You should have a web-designer friend get you a kicking website to profile the new work..also could help with distribution. When it's time I'll send you the contact info for a free-jazz label here that it's worth sending a copy to.

20 thelarmis   ~  Sep 3, 2009 2:25 am

[19] you've got big ears for good music!

yup, got the web guy in tow. he's the guitarist from the fusion trio! alright have the domain and have been writing a bunch of stuff about the CD to go on the eventual website!

i've gotta try to get some sleep. big day tomorrow...

21 Mr. OK Jazz TOKYO   ~  Sep 3, 2009 2:28 am

Nice, good luck! Get your Mariano Zen-Glasses on for increased focus and dominance! Chat later.

NP: Live Herbie Hancock from 1974, "Hornets", some SERIOUSLY spaced-out funk..

22 williamnyy23   ~  Sep 3, 2009 6:13 am

You got dragged to Chariots of Fire too? To this day, I blame my dislike for going to the movies on that experience.

23 OldYanksFan   ~  Sep 3, 2009 7:18 am

[1] Dude! It's a 'sore groin'! A 'stiff groin' is what ARod gets when Kate Hudson sits in the front row.

24 Alex Belth   ~  Sep 3, 2009 8:49 am

Dude, Hair was pretty awful. And Will you did say Leonard Part 6, right? Gaaa! How about Howard the Duck? But yeah, Chariots of Fire for a ten-year old? I wanted to see Cannonball Run and my mom dragged me to that sentimental slop. I have never seen it as an adult. But I developed my movie-going cynicism at a young age.


25 RIYank   ~  Sep 3, 2009 9:02 am

[23] Girardi said "stiff". I think the point was to distinguish the problem from something more serious you could describe as "strained".

I liked this:

Nick Swisher is 27 of 56 at Camden Yards in his career with 29 RBI over 27 games. “Can I stay here and play for the next time team that comes through?” he said. “I’ll DH if they want."

26 rbj   ~  Sep 3, 2009 9:39 am

[12] Like all other drugs, LSD might be fine, in the moment, but 20 years later you wonder what all the fuss was about. It doesn't compete with the beauty of a sunrise. Or the small of a woman's back.

I did enjoy Chariots of Fire, but then I was 17 so could understand it, somewhat.

As to Mo's injury . . .
runs to a dark corner and curls up in the fetal position

27 RagingTartabull   ~  Sep 3, 2009 9:59 am

"Devil and Max Devlin" was a true WPIX Saturday afternoon classic

28 Diane Firstman   ~  Sep 3, 2009 10:06 am

That shot of Elliott Gould for some reason reminds me of Eric Bogosian.

29 Raf   ~  Sep 3, 2009 10:21 am

Cano is one of the few players in the league that can “flip” a ball across the field with such ease and still put a good amount of mustered on the throw.

Reminds me a lot of Tony Fernandez

30 Raf   ~  Sep 3, 2009 10:27 am

I wanted to see Cannonball Run and my mom dragged me to that sentimental slop.

Damn, sorry to hear. I remember being awed by Cannonball Run the first time I saw it

31 Alex Belth   ~  Sep 3, 2009 11:55 am

Oh, I eventually saw it and loved it. "S-M-all" became a stock line. Captain Chaos. That's good stuff right there.

32 Paul Clarke   ~  Sep 3, 2009 12:19 pm

Trying to think of an eagerly anticipated movie from childhood that turned out to be a dud. 'Dark Crystal'?

You and Ben must have been 2 angry men at the dinner table that night when Sam was raving about 'Dancin' and you two had 'The Devil and Max Devlin' to mull over. Talk about the booby prize. Good one.

Come to think of it just about any movie with Cos was generally bad.

On the flip side - any kids movie that featured a good fight generally greatly exceeded expectations - 'My Bodyguard'. 'Karate Kid'.

33 Raf   ~  Sep 3, 2009 12:25 pm

I was more focused on Adrienne Barbeau :)

Jamie Farr was hilarious as the Sheik.

My father took me to see Cannonball Run in the theaters. I remember it was on Main St. in New Rochelle (we lived in Mt Vernon at the time). They had about 3-4 theaters there, they all closed sometime during the 80's. New Rochelle has changed a lot in such a short period of time. Of course those who lived there during the 50's, 60's & 70's say the same thing...

34 Raf   ~  Sep 3, 2009 12:28 pm

Come to think of it just about any movie with Cos was generally bad.

I liked his earlier movies; "Mother, Jugs & Speed" and the movies he did with Sidney Poitier; "Uptown Saturday Night," "A Piece of the Action" and "Let's Do It Again."

35 Alex Belth   ~  Sep 3, 2009 3:16 pm

I remember "Black Hole" Disney's Sci-Fi answer to "Star Wars" being really bad too. And the original "Star Trek" movie was a let down when it first came out though they more than made up for it with the second one.

Oh, another movie theater clunker from that era: "Popeye." Oh and there was also that movie with Gene Wilder and Gilda Radner that was really bad. The first one they did together.

36 Paul Clarke   ~  Sep 4, 2009 9:29 am

'Popeye' - yes! I couldn't wait fo that to come out then it was just awful. First 'Star Trek' was a major bust too.

Another one that didn't live up to the hype was 'Tron'.

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"This ain't football. We do this every day."
--Earl Weaver