Well, it's Friday and you know what that means. Yes, my Oriental manservant Hop-Sing and I are off to Arkansas. The sad yellow bastard has been putting on weight at an alarming rate of late -- when he says "around the world" now he really means around the world -- and so we've got him booked for a stomach stapling at the Huckabee Clinic. As a result, posting by moi will necessarily be sporadic for a few days.
But in my absence, here's a fun project for you all to contemplate:
LAMEST HIT SINGLE OF THE SEVENTIES
Yes, it's time to have a good laugh at the expense of that most questionable of decades. The era that brought us the music which moved Paul Westerberg to say -- "Ah, the 70s. When dogshit really was dogshit."
And, yes, I know this is not exactly the most original topic I've ever come up with and that it's almost too easy, given the boundlessly awful stuff you have to choose from.
I don't care. It''s fun. So there.
That said, here's my totally top of my head Top Ten.
10. Chuck Berry -- My Ding-a-Ling
The guy pretty much invented the poetry of rock-and-roll and yet this infantile little sex ditty was his only number one pop hit. Boy, does that suck.
9. Harry Chapin -- W.O.L.D.
"So I drifted on down to Tulsa, Oklahoma to do me a late night talk show
Now I worked my way down home again, here to Boise, Idaho
That's how this business goes."
Uh, Harry...actual radio stations in Boise, Idaho have the letter prefix K -- not W. Way to do the research, dude. Hope it didn't cut into your Idaho airplay....
8. Mac Davis -- Baby, Don't Get Hooked on Me
It's worth noting that Davis followed up this smarmy slab of preening macho self-regard with a song called (without irony) "It's Hard to Be Humble," and yet God did not smite him dead. In fact, she allowed him to star in The Sting II.
7. Neil Diamond -- I Am, I Said
"I am, I said
To no one there
And no one heard at all
Not even the chair"
As Dave Barry famously observed: "Mr. Diamond -- your Barcalounger's on line 4!"
6. Helen Reddy -- I Am Woman
It's amazing feminism actually survived this song. Interesting bit of trivia: To her very great credit, Mary Travers (of Peter, Paul and) turned down the chance to record it first because she couldn't get through the line "I am strong, I am invincible" without cracking up.
5. The Poppy Family -- Which Way You Going Billy?
I actually have a soft spot for this piece of ersatz folkie sludge, partly because the chorus is kind of catchy (compared to the verse, at least), and partly because Susan Jacks is a pretty good singer. Then I remember she and hubby Terry are Canadian and I get over it.
4. Terry Jacks -- Seasons in the Sun
This one, however, just flat out sucks. No wonder the aforementioned Susan Jacks divorced his sorry hippie ass.
3. Morris Alpert -- Feelings
Whoa whoa whoa. A song that makes Zager and Evans sound like Metallica. I'm not actually sure what that means, but where Morris Alpert is concerned, words generally fail me.
2. Styx -- Lady
Countless parodies notwithstanding, this actually would have been more tolerable if it had been sung by Jerry Lewis in flat-out l'idiot stupide mode.
And the absolutely positively lamest song of the 70s is unquestionably....
1. America -- A Horse With No Name
"The heat was hot."
Jeebus fricking Christ. All in all, a lyric that justifies Randy Newman's remark that the song sounds like it was written by two kids who thought they were on acid.
Alrighty, now -- and your choices would be?