News of the Week: Ghost Jobs, The Flintstones, and (Breaking News!) Potatoes Are Still a Vegetable

In the news of the week ending May 10, 2024, are potatoes, paintings, and Planet of the Apes.

Home for Thanksgiving by Norman Rockwell (©SEPS)

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Random Thoughts

Many people are excited that an Indonesian orangutan used a medicinal plant to treat a wound he suffered. But I’ve seen Planet of the Apes.

I’ve always liked Drew Carey. He seems like a great guy, and his standup is funny, as was his sitcom. Unfortunately, he’s a terrible Price is Right host. He laughs way too much, and after almost two decades at the helm he still misjudges what’s going on in the games and doesn’t explain things clearly. (The show is terrible now too – too many games that are the same and having contestants say “hi” to friends and family is one of the worst decisions in TV history). It’s time for a new host, so I’m not happy that Carey has no plans to retire from the show ever.

People are still trying to get us to eat bugs, this time some of the trillion cicadas that will invade the U.S. this summer. For the last time, I’m not eating bugs (on purpose, anyway).

A Swiss Army Knife without the knife? I guess they can call it something else.

Getting a new job is hard enough, but to find out that many companies post listings for ghost jobs – ones that don’t even exist! – is maddening.

Doing a March Madness-style bracket to pick the best Saturday Night Live cast member of all-time (that’s a Boston Globe link some might not be able to access but I wanted to link to it anyway) is probably silly, because there’s been so much talent over the past 50 years, plus it will all depend on how old you are and when you got into the show. Having said all that, it’s obviously Phil Hartman.

Two years from now, The Saturday Evening Post will be the only magazine that’s not using AI.

Flintstones, Meet the Flintstones (Again)

The animation on The Flintstones was never what one would call “good,” but it’s a fun show that I’ve enjoyed as both a kid and an adult. So it terrifies me that Fox is going to do a sequel series titled Bedrock. The Flintstones and Rubbles are older and Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm are now adults.

This is Fox we’re talking about, so they could decide to make it “edgier” and more raunchy, because it’s 2024 and apparently television has to ruin things from the past that were great (see also ABC’s current version of To Tell the Truth). But it has a great cast! Stephen Root is Fred, Amy Sedaris is Wilma, and Elizabeth Banks is Pebbles.

Potato, Po-tah-to

I’m glad the FDA will continue to classify potatoes as a vegetable and not a grain because I can’t deal with any more disruption in my life.

Bob Schieffer’s Paintings

Since retiring from CBS News, Schieffer has been painting, and he’s really good! CBS Sunday Morning interviewed him last weekend, and they talked about a certain painting that will be of interest to Post readers.

Uploaded to YouTube by CBS Sunday Morning

RIP Bernard Hill, Jeannie Epper, Frank Stella, Steve Albini, Ian Gelder, Richard Tandy, Susan Buckner, and C.J. Sansom

Bernard Hill appeared in TitanicLord of the Rings: The Two TowersLord of the Rings: Return of the KingGandhi, and The Scorpion King, and TV shows like FoxBoys from the BlackstuffWolf Hall, and I, Claudius. He died Sunday at the age of 79.

Jeannie Epper was the main stunt double for Lynda Carter on Wonder Woman and doubled for Linda Evans on The Big Valley and Dynasty. She also performed stunts in such movies as RobocopRomancing the StoneSilver StreakBlade RunnerPoltergeist, and The Towering Inferno. She died Sunday at the age of 83.

Frank Stella was an artist and proponent of minimalism. He died Saturday at the age of 87.

Steve Albini was a musician and the influential producer of classic albums by such bands as Nirvana, The Pixies, PJ Harvey, and many others. He died Tuesday at the age of 61.

Ian Gelder was an acclaimed stage actor who also played Kevan Lannister on Game of Thrones. He also appeared on Doctor Who and in movies like Little Dorrit and King Ralph. He died this week at the age of 74.

Richard Tandy was the keyboardist for Electric Light Orchestra, known for such songs as “Evil Woman,” “Mr. Blue Sky,” and “Don’t Bring Me Down.” He died last week at the age of 76.

Susan Buckner played cheerleader Patty Simcox in the film version of Grease and appeared in TV shows like The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew MysteriesThe Brady Bunch Variety Hour, and When the Whistle Blows. She died last week at the age of 72.

C.J. Sansom was the author of the Shardlake novels (soon to be a Disney+ series) as well as Dominion and Winter in Madrid. He died last month at the age of 72.

This Week in History

First Three Stooges Short Released (May 5, 1934)

It was titled Woman Haters, and it was done in musical rhyme.

It was Marjorie White’s final role. She died in a car accident a year later.

V-E Day (May 8, 1945)

This marks the day of the Allied victory in Europe in 1945.

This Week in Saturday Evening Post History: Whitman’s Sampler (May 4, 1957)

Just as in 1957, Mother’s Day is May 12 this year. That’s Sunday. Hurry up! Go buy something!

Mother’s Day Is Sunday

I bet she’d love some cicadas.

Or you could make her this California Party Quiche (from The Saturday Evening Post Fiber & Bran Better Health Cookbook) or the Eggs Benedict (from The Pioneer Woman) for breakfast. How about a Fusilli alla Caprese from Giada de Laurentiis? Maybe she’d like a Classic Chicken Pot Pie (who doesn’t like chicken pot pie?) from Delish. And for dessert, don’t just go out and buy a box of Hostess, make these Lemon Cupcakes or Grandma’s Sour Cream Pound Cake, both from Delish.

And if mom likes her wine, maybe you can make her this Ruby Red Spritz from Food & Wine.

Next Week’s Holidays and Events

National Limerick Day (May 12)

The sun now goes down around eight

And some people think that’s just great

But I prefer early dark

It’s not just a lark

So for autumn I just cannot wait

Dance Like a Chicken Day (May 14)

If you’re not sure how to do this, you can get some tips from Arrested Development.

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  1. Well yes. They must dissect the essence and aspects of what made it so great between 1936 and 2000, which really came down to a “unifying humanity” that cut across the various socio-economic differences that comprise America, and had something relatable for everyone.

    There was an attempt to revive LOOK (by the publishers of Paris Match) that only lasted from February to August, 1979. They did some good issues as a biweekly at first, but lost millions in the first few months. The French backed out, making a deal with Rolling Stone, who put out the last two monthly issues, and that was it. RS wasn’t the right publisher anyway.

    One thing they did (in ’79) that was clever, was having it sized at 9″ x 12″. Basically right in between the original ‘full-size’ version, and standard size. When open, it still had the large ‘wow’ factor. In my opinion, a LIFE ‘magazine’ done now would need that extra size ‘edge’ and distinction from their line of softcover books.

    I just saw a brand-new one out on ‘Garfield’ to tie in with the new film coming out later this month. Of course The Saturday Evening Post had theirs out back in 1984, as most of us already know. Definitely an 80’s classic cover.

  2. Bob: I did see that about Life. It’s being done by a young, hip pair, but hopefully they won’t change too much about what made it a great magazine.

  3. The Indonesian scientists shouldn’t have been shocked nor surprised the male Orangutan (Rakus) successfully treated a wound on his face with a medicinal plant he repeatedly applied. They happened to observe it (which is fine) but I’m sure they’ve been doing so for thousands of years. Medicinal reasons, to get high, whatever. Most are at (or higher) in intelligence than humans, especially nowadays; God help us.

    I’ve seen ‘The Price Is Right’ on overhead TV’s here and there, and don’t care for Drew Carey either. I liked his TV sitcom from the mid-’90s and early 2000’s. I’m dreading all of the awful attention the truly horrible SNL will be getting later this year and next, at 50. 1975-’93 was about it, bracketed by the Dan Ackroyd/Jane Curtin/Garrett Morris gen, then ending with the Dana Carvey/Jan Hooks/Jon Lovitz/Julia Sweeney/Kevin Nealon/Nora Dunn/Phil Hartman gen.

    I clicked on the Flintstones link, and most people commenting (also) think it’s a bad idea. The 1994 film with John Goodman and Elizabeth Taylor should be the end. Taking anything, from 19-anything to steal from, is a bad idea.

    I’m sorry to hear Richard Tandy passed away. I do LOVE ELO, and am getting tickets to see them in October at the Inglewood (Kia) Forum. A lot more $$ than in 1981 there, but money can’t call all the shots in life. It calls enough, thank you, and ya gotta draw the line somewhere. Thanks for the links, but also check out ‘Shine A Little Love’ for that fantastic, one-of-a-kind ‘cascading downward’ keyboard effect!!

    Thanks for the heavy-on=red Whitman’s Sampler ad, Bob. I guess Leap Year day turned the remainder of 2024 into 1957 calendar-wise. 67 on Sunday the 26th. Let’s see if uh-uh, uh-huh I like it as much as ’67. I have the Post from the week I was born, with a great feature on Jayne Mansfield. That week’s LIFE also, with a photo feature on MM.

    Bob, did you hear (several weeks ago) new owners are planning to re-launch LIFE magazine in 2025? I… don’t see how that could work, but we’ll see. The softcover books seem to be the best sustainable format. There’s a beautiful new one out on Benjamin Franklin I just saw.

    The chicken dance was something, alright. Still, it’s not quite up there with Elaine’s infamous ‘Seinfeld’ dance. No, that one’s for the ages.

  4. Bob, another winner of an article. I enjoyed the way you ended it with the chicken dance. What a joy to read!


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