Monday, June 18, 2007


To see other interpretations of the theme check out Mo.

When I saw the Manic Monday word was Heat all sorts of things came to mind. The song, “The Heat is On,” by Glenn Frey was one that just wouldn’t leave me alone. Many years ago, in one of the many ice shows I was in, a group that I was not a part of skated to that song. Although I wasn’t part of that performance, I think my group was on shortly after them because the song was deeply embedded into my head. Ice shows gave such wonderful memories. Oh, ice shows.

However, that is my no means my favorite “heat” memory. That has to come from the wonderful musical Guys and Dolls. Scene is in the corner barber shop. Nicely Nicely and Benny Southstreet are waiting for their boss, Nathan Detroit, to come in and tell them where the floating crap game will be held. However, instead of Detroit showing up, Lt. Brannigan appears instead with a message for Nathan.

Brannigan- Tell Nathan Detroit that Brannigan says he is not going to find a spot for his crap game because Brannigan has turned on the heat and Brannigan is breathing down everybody's neck.
Brannigan exits through the revolving door, Nathan Detroit comes through it
Nicely Nicely- Nathan, you are lucky. You just missed Brannigan.
Detroit- I am lucky. I missed Brannigan.
Nicely Nicely -He left a message. He said...
Detroit- I am not going to find a place for my crap game because everybody knows Brannigan has turned on the heat and is breathing down everybody's neck.
Nicely Nicely- That is what he said.

I know this may not seem all that hilarious but it was a really funny scene. One of the things I love about Guys and Dolls is that they rarely use contractions. This piece isn’t the best example of that, but the rhythm that contractionless speaking gives to the characters creates a mood that I have never got from any other film. The extreme formality of the language coming out of the mouths of crazy hooligans is hysterical.

I think this scene was one of the first times I was acutely aware of the term heat being used in this manner. I like the word because it has so many connotations. One thing I realized while thinking of this post is that not many of the connotations are positive ones. Initially I thought it was because, while people like to be warm, most don’t like to be hot. However, warm doesn’t have many positive alternate connotations either. Huh, that’s strange.

It’s time for guess that song.
1. Once Again/ I’m in trouble with my only friend/ she is papering the window panes/ She is putting on a smile. Life In A Glass House, Radiohead. Identified by The Doc

2. I’m a street walking cheetah with a heart full of napalm/ I’m a runaway son of the nuclear a-bomb. Search and Destroy, The Stooges. Title by Kiyotoe, Band by Johnny Yen.

3. Well my name is Young MC and I’m cold rockin the house/ I came up into the place and now I’m turning it out

4. So/ So I wish you could tell/ Heaven from hell/ Blue skies from pain. Wish You Were Here, Pink Floyd. Identified by Jeff Roberts

5. Since age one/ Kita knew he had the answer/ And it was/ That someday he’s be a dancer. Show Me How To Do Like You, Stevie Wonder. Identified by Mom.


Jeff Roberts said...

#4 is Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here.

Good point on the contractionless speech in the mouths of the gangsters. Nicholas Cage's character in Rasing Arizona has a similar sort of thing going on - big flowery phrases, though I can't find a quote anywhere at the moment.

The Doc said...

#1 is "Life In A Glass House" by Radiohead (good one!)

I love Guys and Dolls; it's such a good play and has great songs. However, the movie version with Brando and Sinatra gets to me if I watch it more than once every few years. Sinatra is well cast, but Brando is just wrong. He doesn't have the chops; whenever he sings "Luck Be A Lady" I grimace.

Janna said...

I know what you mean about the contraction-less speech being funny. It's an amusing juxtaposition, coming from the mouths of hooligans. You're right! :)

Travis said...

The way the dialoge is written and delivered in Guys and Dolls sets it apart and makes it more than just another musical.

The other thing I enjoy is the way the men's speech is clipped and choppy, but the women's delivery is slower and more rounded.

Danielle said...

Ugh Jeff beat me to #4.
I tagged you with a meme of Sling's creation.

As always...

Mom said...

#5 is "Show Me How to Do Like You", by Stevie Wonder.

Lizza said...

Haven't seen this musical, but it does sound nice. Not using contractions would be hard!

#4 is one of my favorite songs ever.

With Love, Fat Girl said...

I'm not a musicals fan, but crazy excited to see Sweeney Todd, which is coming out in theatres sometime this year!

Kiyotoe said...

i'm not a musical fan either but i've already been warned that i have to go see "Wicked" when it gets to Atlanta. (I think it's amusical)


#2 "I ain't got time to make no apolgy!" Search and Destroy by ummm.......ummm......gimme a second.

Johnny Yen said...

#2 is The Stooges' "Search and Destroy." A couple of people beat me to Pink Floyd's "Wish You Were Here," one of the first songs I ever learned on guitar.

Natalie said...

Jeff- I love Raising Arizona but can only watch it every once in a while. It seems like Nicholas Cage has been everywhere I turn lately. He rules.

Doc- Nice guessing! In retrospect I agree with you. Yet, growing up on mention it.

Janna- Contractionless speech is funny period. I tried talking that way and failed.

Travis- I never noticed that. Very interesting.

Danielle- I'll have to check it out!

Mom- I love that song.

Lizza- Mine too. I was on a huge kick with it Sr. year of college.

WLFG- I'm not familiar with it but if it is a musical I'll be down.

Kiyotoe- I'm sorry. As you can see, I wasn't the hugest fan The book was so much better. The music was real ok. Lots of people liked it though.

Johnny Yen- If I were to learn guitar, that would be one of the first songs I would learn.

Johnny Yen said...

I think it was, along with "House of the Rising Sun," "Tangled Up In Blue" and a couple of others, a song I specifically learned guitar to play.