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I Want To Buy The Boston Red Sox

No, don’t get me wrong; I don’t want to own the Boston Red Sox. I don’t even watch the games. I want to buy the Red Sox, and fix them.

I’ll put the stadium back the way it was in 1966. A dreadful olive drab roofless warehouse with a hint of Stalin about it, with big troughs in the Men’s Rooms to piss in. No luxury boxes, either. The only food they’d serve would be hot dogs that make the hot dogs at the Sunoco station look fresh. Then I’d make Barbara Dennerlein the organist. No more piped in rap songs when they call in closers with pot bellies and higher ERAs than IQs. And no riding on carts to the mound, either, like they were obese Walmart shoppers. Maybe donkeys. Make them ride little burros or something. They’re getting Dennerlein, good and hard, the whole way, too. Lady of Spain…

It’s my team, so I’m changing the uniforms from the crap they’ve got now to Swiss Guard oufits. They can wear the metal conquistador helmets when they bat, too. I’m gonna change the rules, and the batter has to run to second right away, right over the mound, and the pitcher has to tackle him if he can. And the ball has to be soaked in tar and set alight when the umpire yells: Play ball!

The umpires will have to dress like mothers-in-law — you know, big muumuus, slippers, curlers in their hair — and they won’t call balls and strikes, just intone,”That’s not where my son would have thrown it,” if the ball’s pitched outside. They’ll make you wipe your feet before you cross home plate, too. Should yield some drama five feet up the baseline.

Dennerlein’s gonna play the national anthem using only her left foot. So let it be written. So let it be done.


I like to see regular people working.

Regular people don’t work much any more. You don’t know that because you don’t know any regular people. They’re the guys with meth teeth and neck tattoos glaring at you on the subway, sitting next to some other regular guy’s illegitimate kid and her mother. Their new job is being a professional mess. It pays OK, but it doesn’t “beat working,” as we used to say when we cadged a job with no heavy lifting.

If you think regular people not working is a problem now, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet. There are elaborate schemes in play right now to hide all sorts of people from being counted as not working. They’re tucked away in endless educational gulags where no one learns anything or goes on to do anything worth doing. They’re stashed in cubicles where people don’t do the things they were hired to do, that shouldn’t be done anyway, and won’t be for much longer. You’ll find them nibbling around the edges of commerce in various hamstringing poses, an army of love children of Ralph Nader and Howard Zinn. They are never going to make anything, and will keep others from doing so if they can. Beats working. For now.

Working in a factory like the one shown in the video can be dreary work. I’ve done it. But it doesn’t destroy your soul. You can destroy your soul on the weekends if you like, but the work lends meaning to life.

Time marches on. If you want to get your knickers in a twist over the loss of jobs in a Hammond factory, you should probably at least consider that the Hammond organ, which is a wonderful thing, was designed and made to put big pipe organ manufacturers out of business. Churches and other public buildings needed cheap organs after WW II. It’s nicer to see people making musical instruments than munitions in that factory, isn’t it? Tell it to the pipe organ makers.

A Hammond organ cost a fortune and weighed a ton. I’ve moved a “chopped” Hammond organ many times, along with its evil brother, the Leslie cabinet, and I didn’t sing opera under my breath while doing it, except maybe the parts of an opera where someone gets stabbed. It’s weird to think of it as a cheesy, cheap substitute for what it replaced, but you have to understand what’s going on in an economy that becomes technologically more advanced and allows for creative destruction.

The people in the video were useful and valuable, and made useful and valuable contributions to public life. They had dignity. A good machine makes people more valuable. The world is full of bad machines.

Cornell Dupree, RIP

The Zelig of Soul Music

(That’s Cornell Dupree with Hendrix and Wilson Pickett. Think of that show. Nowadays people pay 150 bucks to go and see Charlie Sheen explain why he got fired from a sitcom)

Oh, dear. Cornell Dupree passed away. It’s OK if you have to search for the name. He’s one of those fellows that makes the world go ’round, but you rarely catch with their feet on the pedals. By his own estimate, he played on 2500 albums. Seems low to me.He had emphysema, and perished waiting for a lung transplant. The last video of him on YouTube shows him still onstage last year with an oxygen tank.

He started, more or less, here: King Curtis.

I’d be hard-pressed to name a better rhythm section than Jerry Jemmott, Bernard Purdie, and Cornell Dupree.

I like Atlantic Records stuff from the late sixties and the seventies, so Cornell Dupree is a daily staple at our house. He probably shows up at your house, too, whether you know it or not. Have you heard of any of these people?

  • Aretha Franklin
  • King Curtis
  • Donny Hathaway
  • Joe Cocker
  • Brook Benton
  • Bonnie Raitt
  • Paul Simon
  • Sam Cooke
  • Wilson Pickett
  • Sam and Dave
  • Hendrix
  • Fats Domino
  • Miles Davis
  • Mariah Carey
  • Bill Withers

He opened up for the Beatles, and was in the first Saturday Night Live band. He worked.

He died three days ago at his home in Forth Worth, the city of his birth, still married after 53 years to his wife Erma, with two sons and a daughter and nine grandchildren, none farther away than Dallas. To be able to achieve so “ordinary” a family life in that business might be the most extraordinary thing about him of all. Rock steady, and missed.

Jupiter And Mars

That kid he bombs around the lot in my Caddie and I’ve got my heart in my throat just tossing him the keys but he never misses so what the hell. He’s dressed like he’s waiting for an organ grinder, not me, but the missus think’s he’s some kinda handsome and what’s the harm in that. Young man should be handsome and see some hubba hubba wife now and then so he knows why he’s groping that neighborhood girl in the back of a jalopy for.

Jesus she steps out like a queen. The monkey missing his tin cup holds the door and she puts out one leg with the seam running up the back and he’s transfixed like he’s a gimp at Lourdes and she’s coming down from a cloud. She’s got a halo of perfume and radiation from the silk and glitters a bit on the fingers. We go in and the Caddie gets a workout.

There’s the maitre d and he knows me and there’s no fuss except the fussing over a guy likes. The wife inspects the ceiling and Rocco says his little prayer of a tip and massages me a bit. He inspects the long memorized seating plan like it’s a lost scroll instead of his reason for being. “I might just have something near the floor ’cause I know missus, well, she can dance is what I’m sayin’.”

The coat check girl is the homely one, and even she could start a knifefight on any corner in Naples just by walking past. The girl who takes you to the table could get the Pope to reconsider.

There’s too many onions but they’re sweet. The wood pressed into a little quilt reveals itself as you make your way to the bottom of the bowl. Bread in a basket, O and V in the cruets, two ashtrays. Chianti, Franco; ten bucks and it’s the best Chianti in the world, with the cock right there on the stripe like back home. The stuffy guys, the dentists with Yankee names come in here and order sangiovese for their stringy wives to ooh and aah over and pay twenty ’cause they don’t know no better.

The dentist Yankees drift by on the dance floor and you can see them eying the real woman you got, pushing the limits of her dress every which place — Bam! Boop! Bap! — and he’s got the skinny sorority girl who moves around like a giraffe in a straightjacket and you know right off that she moves like that everywhere. That’s why he can’t stop robbing a peek at the missus when he can; they always sneak out of the house in their mind in here, the white bread. They couldn’t handle a woman like I got anyway. They should stick to the ingenues who reach for the diazepam instead of the kitchen knives when you piss her off.

In other words, please be true. In other words, I love you.

(Reader and commenter Misterarthur sent me that video, for the Hammond. Guys from Detroit know Hammond)

Sippican Cottage. Hammond It Up Again

Sippican Cottage has become the Intertunnel’s appendix, mostly useless, flaring up occasionally, but dammit, someone has to be your go-to catchment area for Hammond organ music.

We would be remiss if we didn’t include the song that’s “the most played song in the last 75 years in public places in the UK,” as well as the “most-played record by British broadcasting of the past 70 years.”

Let’s neck under the bleachers!

Tag: hammond organ

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