Rainbows, Brackets, and Whines…OH MY! — Friday Filler

Ah. Thank Grog It’s FIRDAY!

This is one of those weeks when my head is spinning with things that make me go, “ERGH!” and “Whaaaaaa?”and “Really??????”   and “SoooooCoooooool!”  And no. I’m not talking about tweets, or politics, or cable news talking heads….I’m actually talking about THE GAME (and the Bracket Challenge.) Oh…and at the end, I’ll share some good news.

Let’s start with the update(s). I admit, as out-of-context and “space/time breakin'” as the Toaster Update was, I liked it. It was fun…and I got everything I wanted…not, everything available…but everything I wanted. No donuts spent (except on the tree-slide…which is about the loudest water sounding thing in the game..makes me have to pee). I laughed at the “Favio/Sexy-Pirate”…especially when he let his gut hang loose. All in all…Fun Update!

This “mini-update?” Uhm. Not so much. I’m not going to get into it…as I think the concept of Pride Week is important (if not just another way to be divisive in a world that is already so full of marches, you need a scorecard to keep track of the placards, when we should all be celebrating our similarities, rather than our differences).  But, like most “hot topics” taken on by the writers, the dialogue is pretty narrow and stereotypical, even for a cartoon-based mobile game.  And that’s all I’ll say about that…

But…the REAL reason I’m Crankified, is that we now have a couple of MORE characters who barely appeared in the show, in our games…and we DON’T Have Bleeding Gums Murphy yet!!!

Oh. And I’m apparently at the BOTTOM of the “Mod-Heap” in 216th place…in Safi’s Bracket Challenge.  WTH????

I think it’s time for me to use my “bully pulpit” to make the case for “why we need to pick the Jazz Hole” in this challenge. I’ve been a paid PAC writer before…and this time, I think it’s time we hear from the ICCMU, and their desire to be represented!! Rainbows or no rainbows!
The ICCMU (International Comic Character Musicians Union) is a small, and under-represented group of musical comic characters who have unionized in order to get their fair share of press, and back pay for music played during animated episodes. Started by “Clyde,” one of the last remaining California Raisins (those guys were pretty old before they became famous), the ICCMU lobbies for recognition of the extra hard work they do, to bring peace, harmony, and soul into the slapstick world of cartoons.

As someone who has done scores of music with these talented artists in past projects, I am an honorary member (although my flesh and blood pedigree prevents me from getting my official ICCMU card). I can speak of the pain, pathos and struggles of musicians everywhere, who dedicate their lives to their art, only to be passed by when it comes to recognizing the place that art plays in the lives of those watching.

That is the case with Bleeding Gums Murphy…and the tacit disregard EA/Gracie/Fox apparently have for him. and perhaps the entire world of Jazz (and perhaps even the saxamophone). After all…what could possibly explain the appearance of TONS of random “Pride Buildings” (including a chance to buy “The League of Extra Horny Gentlemen” which is in the Bracket Battle), and NOT giving us the “Jazz Hole” and Bleeding Gum Murphy?????

Yes. Julio appears in 17+ episodes (most notably “Three Gays of the Condo” and “Flaming Moes”), but Grady is only in 6 episodes…and only the same primary six that Julio is in (which kinda makes sense, since they are kind of a couple).

But, Murphy (his real name is Murphy Kenneth Hibbert), appears not only in 22 episodes, plus the Simpsons Movie, and most notably, in two of the BEST episodes in the entire Simpsons 500+ episode history.

Even though season 1, was still struggling with animation (a bit crude, and the voices still developing), it is important to note that each episode laid out the basic groundwork for the prime characters of the show. The sixth episode of season one, “Moaning Lisa,” reveals the inner depth and pathos that Lisa carries with her in her life, while she struggles to be the only truly “normal one” in a family of misfits.  Some of the dialogue is heartbreaking…but, in the end, she finds her voice, that of a little girl who finds solace in playing the blues, to get through life.  Her mentor and guru…Murphy.

While the Simpsons is full of slapstick, and backhanded politics…it is the moments when the writers reach deeper into the characters, that I appreciate the most. From the first time that Lisa plays on the bridge (an homage to Sonny Rollins) with Murphy, it is clear that some part of her soul will always be in a woeful lament for the human condition. I get it. It’s why I play music. Nothing…and I mean nothing else in the world (even golf), can take me away from wondering “what the hell has gone wrong with the world,” like sitting down at the keyboard, or taking a guitar in hand…and letting the pain of watching the news come across my business news servers…wash away.

It’s why our Springfields NEED the Jazz Hole and Murphy in our game. Enough with the politics…and ways to divide us all up into quadrants of bathrooms, and picketers, and tweet-sharing. It’s time to have a place to get away from it all. The Jazz Hole is that place!

But fear not, folks… I won’t leave you hanging (or trying to hang yourself from the pirate gallows) in a state of depression.

Nope…I promised Good News…and Here it is!

YOUR donations at work…as promised…bringing light to a world where none existed before (at least after the sun goes down).

Here are some pics of the Solar Lights being installed at the Buyijja School. Whooohooo!

Let there be light! And THANKS to all who donated!  In this world, with all that is going on…it’s nice to know we can make a positive change…effectively and efficiently!  You guys rock!

49 responses to “Rainbows, Brackets, and Whines…OH MY! — Friday Filler

  1. I would love some Bleeding Gums in the game. Plus it would be a reason to add a another functional bridge that BGM & Lisa could have a “Play The Blues” task on!

  2. Bleeding Gums isn’t exactly a major character. He played a major role in 2 episodes, had minor speaking roles in 2 others, then appeared in non speaking roles in the rest. I think Julio had had speaking roles in more episodes than him.

    • Sorry. Did the research. Murphy wins the “more episodes” battle.

      • But are you going by appearing or speaking? For example, would you count “Bart’s Dog Gets an F”, where he appears for a few seconds on a quilt? I think actual speaking appearances are more significant (otherwise some of the background characters like Sam or Richard would be far more significant), and Julio has had lines in more episodes. To be fair, he hasn’t had as many significant appearances as Bleeding Gums.

  3. mydadlookslikeFlanders

    They really need to provide Bleeding Gums

  4. Yes to Bleeding Gums Murphy! When I started playing 3/4 years ago, I was slightly surprised to find that he wasn’t already in the game lol

  5. Yes on Bleeding Gums…but what are you pointing at, man?!

  6. I myself am a lesbian, and let me tell you, pride is NOT about dividing people into categories, trying to be “special snowflakes”, or even big parades and marches. It might look that way from the outside because these big LGBT events have gotten bigger and flashier over time, but please understand that the original pride marches were funeral marches. Memorial services. Places to go to remember those who were killed in riots, fighting for their basic human rights, or who were murdered out of hatred. They were gatherings of people who were sad and angry about the state of the world. It’s only recently that pride has become about… well, pride, and celebrating who we are and how far we’ve come.

    Believe me, I GET IT about Bleeding Gums and The Jazz Hole. I’ve played my fair share of the blues. I know what it’s like to be so saddened at the state of the world that only music makes sense. But please, don’t think that the LGBT community are trying to draw lines between us. We’re with you. It just so happens that pride, which started out as a way to express our feelings of loss and sorrow, is our “happy place”.

    • I agree with you…but am saddened by a world that seems to pigeon-hole race, creed, and sexuality into an event, a week, a month or whatever, instead of learning to accept and appreciate each sector as part of the whole, all of the time. The fact that any person needs to shed blood to “earn” basic freedoms is appalling.

      Ignorance and fundamental barriers created by ancient scriptures do more damage than almost any other faction in the world. I long for a day when “celebrations,” demonstrations and funerals “for a cause” are a thing of the past.

      • I always thought the Pride rainbow was about having pride in yourself, whatever you are in any way and no matter how much other people might try to put you down for being different, not about dividing people at all. Not sure where you got that idea. I hardly pay attention to such things and it never struck me the way you interpreted it. Rainbows have been used as a sign of coming together and celebrating unity in diversity for a long time (remember the Rainbow Coalition?). Rainbows are a fun reminder that it’s ok to be different, we don’t have to blend together in one gray lump but can be our separate selves and still be a cohesive unit.

    • My opinion (from a white, Christian male in the U.S.), for what it’s worth. Pride marches, women’s rights marches, Black Lives Matter, etc.), have been to stand up for marginalized groups to organize, unite, celebrate, and to support each other. I have been to some of these events and have always felt accepted. Now if a person of color, LGBTQ we’re to go to a white male pride festival, I’m sure they wouldn’t get the same exp. My guess is if these groups weren’t marginalized they wouldn’t feel the need to have these marches and celebrations. Or maybe they would just bc it’s an excuse to have a party.

      • Agreed. We are a LONG way from “liberty and justice for all.” The current divisiveness makes us weak, and unable to move forward on issues that matter.

  7. DrF0nkenstein

    +1 for Bleeding Gums!

  8. oh i like the Pride update……..new buildings and characters and more inclusive view of society…..look at the pictures of london march which i am sure is replicated everywhere….#moreincommon

  9. i dont like jazz but BGM and Troy McClure are so noticable by their absence…..my real concern is that when they do appear it will be like the 4 horsemen riding i the sky for tsto

  10. petshopboy1980s

    I’m with Patric.

  11. talon8770 // rick

    I agree with you Patric, music has a different meaning to everybody and no one hears it the same way or understands the meaning. Being a Rage Against the Machine ,Led Zeppelin, and Pink Floyd amongst other metal fan, I also love the blues. BB. King ..Etc. One time in Newport R.I. I went to a blues club and listened to a little old man play the sax like it was made for him, ( Kenny G couldn’t compete ) I was the only white person in there I got some looks and no one cared really, but the man was amazing, that sealed the deal. I also want Murphy. As for this event I think I logged on twice in the last 3 days. I don’t mind gays as long as they act like everyone else and not really playing it up. I have a friend that is gay and no one could tell the difference unless he told you.

    • Well…as I have a gay sister, gay cousin, and several gay friends… I know what they went through to earn even the most basic rights that the rest of us have simply by our birth. However, I also know that for the most part, giant parades, and acting out doesn’t really serve the cause for most.

      Music is a choice… Your sexuality is not… Religion is a choice, politics is a choice, bigotry is a choice… being born the way you are, is not a choice. I’ve said more than I want to, but feel that it’s important to make the distinction.

      • talon8770 // rick

        hear ya brother God Bless

      • Sorry but if we didn’t “act out” over the years (one of our most influential organizations is literally called Act Up!), we wouldn’t have the rights we have today. Stonewall wasnt a tea party after all. And gay people shouldn’t have to change their behavior because it makes straight people uncomfortable. I get tired of always having to defend myself or my community to straight people. That is why I actually dreaded this Pride event, because I knew there would be those who would take issue and have to say something about it.

        • For the record. I do not take issue with the event. I take issue with the narrow, stereotypical way the writers dealt with it.

    • Why should anyone have to “act like everyone else”? How boring a world that would be!

  12. How dare you question the selection of Julio! jk. But if you want to get into who should be released first, then Ralphie and Wiggum’s Sarah should come before one episode,dead Gums.

  13. Who can forget the J.Mac reference on a pizza box! Or from one of the newer seasons where Lisa’s walking to the tune of Monk’s Dream. In the episode that involves the Jazzy Times, you can hear the Duke, Benny Golson and Brubeck. Seriously, I want to tap Bleeding Gums Murphy instead of all these cameo characters that appear on one episode. Make it happen already EA! You brought back Dr. Monroe and the evil babysitter, no reason for Bleeding Gums to be MIS.

    PS anyone else catch the Stan Getz reference in the new season of Twin Peaks? Miguel Ferrer is hilarious on the show, sad he’s gone.

  14. I completely agree with everything you say. I love jazz and blues music and I need BLEEDING GUMS MURPHY and the Jazz Hole in my game!!!!
    Great to see the pictures of the solar lighting being installed at the school. If there is any money over I think it would be good to spend it on a new ladder as the one in the pictures looks a bit unsafe.
    Glad to have helped and best wishes to all.
    Jackie x

  15. Any enjoyment of an episode with Bleeding Gums is thoroughly ruined by Yeardley Smith’s singing. *shudders*

  16. Everyone has a little Jazz Hole somewhere (in their heart or buttocks), and some people are complete Jazz Holes. EA should know we still want Bleeding Gums as much as we wanted Maggie, and as much as we still want Troy McClure and Lionel Hutz.

    I see what your post is really about, a distraction from clashing opinions regarding this mini-event and channeling all our passion into a United goal to just keep asking for something we can all (pretty much) agree with.

    JAZZ HOLE and Bleeding Gums Murphy !!! Maybe we’ll get the Summer time Singing update after this one. 🎤🕶🎼 All EA needs is a little sax. 🎷

    • Actually this post was planned and mostly written last week. Pat tweaked to add a note about this event.

    • You’d never get McClure or Hutz – they have too much respect for the memory of the actor who voiced them. They retired the character completely – I’d say the game included.

  17. This seems like a good time for a shameless plug of my craptastic music:


  18. OrdinarilyBob

    Wow, that’s great news, Patric! Back-pats all around to those who helped out (I think I missed this one, sorry). If you don’t mind, how well do those sort of installations work? I assume the solar energy charges a battery that feeds the light at night, right? If there’s 10-12hrs of day (say in Spring or Autumn) how long will the light stay on that night? What about an ~8hr Winter day? I’m not judging, I’m just curious how well that sort of technology works these days…

    • I don’t fully understand the technology- but they claim 8 hours on a full charge. As only the security light is on all night, and there is a battery reserve that is large enough to service 4 lights, I am assuming it gets the job done. The “Barefoot” units are the best known in Africa- and are used extensively with a high reliability factor.
      Here is a link to their site- https://www.barefootpower.com/

      AND…you have been EXTREMELY gracious and generous in our efforts, Bob. No worries if you “missed one.”

  19. Steven Dagnello

    “I’m in awe of you!” 😮 Awesome work at the school.

  20. Patric, as usual a good piece of analysis by you. Had to smile when you wrote “real name is Murphy Kenneth Hibbert”. I would have written “full name is…”, but I guess he’s real for you. Regards, John

  21. I never thought a Grumpy Old Man could disagree with a Cranky Old Guy as much as this. Most of my life I spend thinking I’m the only one who thinks as I do, I wander around in a Marvin-like huff (H2G2) amazed that others could be so deluded. The only, and I mean ONLY, thing that the masses agree with me on is that jazz is an abomination, something that should only be listened to if you’re unfortunate enough to find yourself in room 101.
    It’s bad enough that Lisa carries her sax around, but at least the sax can be a beautiful instrument in other genres. Jazz Hole? Only if we can make the J fall off…

    • WOW…………………… but, if you watch the episode (which I fully hope you do), they play “The Blues” not Jazz. I am a musician. I have huge, wide, ears…and there is some music that grates on me from almost every genre. I am not a fan of “noodly jazz” that is too free-form and dissonant. But I was raised loving Dixieland and Chicago jazz, which has its roots in the blues. Kenny G is considered jazz. I knew him when he was in Jeff Lorber’s fusion band, and could wail…instead of the whiny drivel he plays now on soprano sax. Not sure what your flavor or “team” of music may be- but I can assure you, that I can find crap and brilliance in every genre. So…lumping “Jazz” together is the same as lumping “Rock” or “Country.” Open your mind, my friend…there is a huge, bright, wide world of sound out there.

      • Lol. My post was made with tongue firmly planted in cheek!
        If you looked through my music collection you’d think I was either a 14 year old girl, a throwback to Woodstock or a punk rocker with a guarantee you’d hate at least half of it. Music is a deeply personal thing, there’s no right or wrong. I don’t especially like some of the music I possess but the memories it brings back are priceless. If you don’t like a particular kind of music it’s an easy thing to avoid or ignore, so I have absolutely no problem with any of it. Bigotry on the other hand…

        • “14 year old girl”….hmmmm….Justin Beiber? Taylor Swift? Enquiring minds want to know, lol!

          • I suspect people might say I have a disproportionate amount of girl band pop for a 50-year old straight bloke! Suddenly I feel the need to justify myself, so I’m not going to 😀

            • You definitely don’t have to justify yourself on my account….I have the Partridge Family on my iPod.

        • lol – sounds suspiciously like my music collection. I usually describe it as “eclectic” 😉

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