Touch of Grey will, well, touch upon the rainbow that is life. Good music, good times, and good friends combine to make all the splendid colors. Touch of Grey will celebrate this beautiful rainbow.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Yul Brynner, Chess, and Controversy

Thanks to Getsmart, Yul Brynner has been on the brain for a while. What sweet thoughts! So, this one is for you, Getsmart.

I've been meaning to share my favorite one-hit wonder, and now seems the perfect opportunity to do so, given the perfect storm of Yul Brynner and controversy.

Seems there's a little back-and-forth going on about costumes some deem offensive due to racial and ethnic stereotypes. I say Halloween is all in fun and I'm actually going dressed as an Indian maiden this year (read: Native American for you sensitive types). Stereotype? Maybe. Fun? Absolutely.

So that brings me to this great song: what other tune would ever mention Yul Brynner? For that alone, it scores points. Only one-hit wonder about chess? Score. Controversy? Score again. I remember that Thailand (once Siam) was OFFENDED because the song did not exactly give their nation a glowing representation. It does mention "one crowded, polluted, stinking town", but is this not reality? So, Thailand, from my understanding, actually banned the song in their nation. Too bad. ONE OF THE COOLEST EVER!

So, without further ado, because it's not banned here in America, and because if anyone has a right to be offended, it should be nerds like me who play chess (but, of course, I'm not offended - after all, chess is the "ultimate test of cerebral fitness"). Good thing I love the song and all the lyrics. It is also unique in that it came from a stage play by the name of - you guessed it- "Chess". Enjoy!

And just for good measure, I can't resist showcasing another song about chess - "I've Seen All Good People" by Yes. No, they don't mention Yul Brynner, but they do give some excellent advice - "Don't surround yourself with yourself". Good advice for those who are offended by simple, fun Halloween costumes. It's really not all about you sometimes - it's just Halloween. Remember, on the chess board, black and white sit side by side. Get over it and enjoy life's pleasures!


Edith Ann said...

I remember last year, I think, that Prince Harry dressed as a Nazi and everyone freaked out.

While I do think folks get a bit sensitive about mentioning someone's ethnicity (like they haven't figured out they are white or black or Hispanic or Asian or naive American??), or culture, sometimes I think the more appropriate way to describe a 'disturbing' thing is 'in good taste'. I realize that is subjective, but go read Snarky in the Suburbs last blog and see if you don't agree with her assessment of adult Hallowe'en costumes.

I don't dress up and I don't give out candy--my dog's state of insanity during the event is just not worth it--but I have no problem with folks having a great time.

But, yeah, I'll do that mental judgment thing on tacky or tasteful! And unless you are a real slutty Indian Maiden--no problem with your choice.

Happy Hallowe'en!

Sugar Magnolia said...

Not slutty at all. Always classy. (Well, almost always...) Just your basic little Injun gal, with maybe a hippie touch here and there. I planned on going as.....oh, well, I'll save that for next year. And that choice, too, will be in good taste, actually a nerdy-type, intellectual thing of which even Mr. Spock would approve. Very logical, in fact.

Have a good Halloween, Edith Ann.