Sunday, December 27, 2009

I like it here.

(MQMurphy photo)

Heaven and Hell

There’s a town in the news that gets
Bombed every day.
Heaven is when you don’t get hit.

There’s a town up the road
Where people sometimes shop.
Hell is a long checkout line at WalMart.

I like it when I don’t get blown up,
And I hate a long checkout line
Especially when I just came in to get these batteries and boxer shorts.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


(MQMurphy Image)

Ahhh – I just can’t throw myself at the barricades with
the same vigor anymore.
If I ever did.
These days it seems like a huge accomplishment when I manage to get the trashcans out to the street on Tuesday evening for
the Wednesday pickup.
Makes me feel like a solid citizen.
See what I mean?

Thursday, October 01, 2009

My simple plan for getting rich.

Have you noticed that whenever there's a piece on the radio or on television about anything of a financial nature they play the Pink Floyd tune "Money" as an intro?
Of course you have. That damned jangling cash register! Totally annoying!
I've resisted using that tune in any of the radio shows I've done with a 'money' theme.
By the way, the photo above is a line of trucks delivering
royalty checks to Roger Waters.

So - to get to the point about my simple plan®:
I intend to write a very catchy tune with the title "Naked + Murder".
Hell - it'll write itself. You already know why I'm doing this. You're probably kicking yourself in the butt right now because you didn't do it first.
They'll be playing my tune every time there's a TV or radio piece about one of those wonderful bloody naked murders.
Which is . . . all the time.

I don't mean to sound like - oh, a fogey? - but is there a prime-time cop/lawyer/cooking show that doesn't at some point have an image of a bloody naked corpse?
Well, now I've found the silver lining in that cloud. The neighbors will probably complain about the trucks, but I'll just throw a helluva block party a couple of times a year.

"MURDER! It's a gas, let's see a pic-ture
of a naaaaked ass . . . "

Sunday, June 21, 2009


I have applied for the job of Trim Carpenter, a job for which my qualifications are obvious. I understand, of course, that should I gain too much weight I will be demoted to Fat Carpenter until such time that I shall demonstrate once again my fitness for the prior position.
Michael Q. Murphy

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Sweet Jesus in a jukebox!

(Image shamelessly lifted from Google Images)

February 27, 2009
Working on tomorrow’s radio show and I’m thinking that one of the best things that ITunes has got going for it (you’ve got to check this for me!) is people who’ve had a couple of glasses of wine with dinner and are now overcome with nostalgia for a tune they heard somewhere once – or a hundred times. And they tap ITunes for their nostalgia fix. Perfect. $$. (sound effect = "Ka-ching")

I think "Don't Stop Believin'" hits it in that category for me. I'm always reminded of an afternoon when I sat at the bar in Kahn's Ugly Mug and heard that tune on the jukebox. It became manifestly clear to me that it was a completely perfect rock and roll tune. Please - don't take my word for it - listen to that tune for yourself.
Years later, I downloaded it from ITunes and now listen to it whenever the mood strikes me.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Banging some dents out of that Fender.

Article in the Times this morning about U2. I feel as though they are the timbers that keep the ceiling of this coal mine we call Rock and Roll from collapsing.
I'm on the far side of 50, closing in on 60 - and my inner-13-year-old-guitar-geeky-self gets indescribable joy from making noises with a Stratocaster that sound like what The Edge gets in the song "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For".
It is a ringing, echo-ey, sometimes brittle sound that washes over the whole song. A distillation of all the best guitar sounds that guitarists have managed to squeeze out of that guitar since the first Strats rolled off the assembly line in Fullerton, CA over 50 years ago.
Thank you, Mr. Edge. Thank you, Mr. Hendrix. Thank you, Ms. Raitt.
Thank you, Mr. Dale. Thank you, Mr. Vaughan.
Thank you, Mr. Clapton.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Reading about you? Reading about me?: Contact with Other Worlds

Wondering now about what is average America. I read the New York Times online every day – I see pictures of New Yorkers in the Times – upscale young couples with jobs that pay well – clean cut and smiling.
They probably take vacations – kids will go to good schools – I tire of looking at them.
I told Ellen that I was looking for another newspaper to read because I was tired of looking at rich white people smiling and holding their babies up for a picture.
Who do they represent? I Googled ‘average American newspaper’ to see if I could take a look at another America – it’s an academic question – I could look at the Philadelphia Daily News or a paper from Idaho, I guess.
So I did that. I Googled "American newspapers" and got a list. I went to Idaho and looked at the papers there – I chose the Idaho Mountain Express, which reports news from Sun Valley, Ketchum, Hailey, Bellview and Carey. I don’t want to make it a novelty kind of thing, but the first item I read was about how the Planning and Zoning Board in Hailey had changed the code to permit five chickens on a property instead of just three.
Certainly I could look at my own local papers, the Cape May County Herald or the Cape May Star and Wave, but the issues they report are too close to my daily reality for me to get anything like a long view of American culture from them. Hence my Idaho sojourn. I'll check there from time to time to get some perspective.