Adam Schlesinger, RIP

I don’t think I have ever reposted but today seems appropriate. This post was from 2005. We were huge Fountains of Waynes fans. The whole family is so saddened by the death of Adam Schlesinger yesterday from COVID-19. He was 52 years old. It makes me angrier every day that people are dying because a pandemic got out of hand in the US due to complete incompetence period. If it doesn’t make you angry it should. My heart goes out of the fans and the family.

My 2005 post is below.

Today was supposed to be a beautiful day in May but instead, it was cold and rainy and miserable.  Major drag.  We had tickets to see Ben Kweller and Fountains of Wayne in Central Park to support Sing for the Children.  An organization that supports over 17,000 homeless children in New York City, that is over 40% of the homeless in New York City today.  This event also benefits Association to Benefit ChildrenBailey HouseThe Children’s Aid SocietyHELPUSA, Homes for the Homeless and Women in Need.  If you click through on any of these links, you can’t help but think, thank god for organizations like this.  They are all doing wonderful work for people in need.  Hopefully not only have they have saved one life they have saved many lives. 

Needless to say, because of the crappy weather, the turnout today was pouring but luckily the organization sells tickets prior to the day of the event, so rain or shine, they probably hit their goals.  We were one of the few die-hards who showed up in the rain to watch the concert.  Our friends showed up too.  We can’t find a day to get together for dinner but we can all manage to get a concert.  Kind of funny.  Regardless, Ben Kweller rocked.  They literally had to tell him his time was up to get him off the stage.  He played old songs and new songs.  The guy is seriously talented.  He probably thinks about new music all the time.  I like his lyrics and his sounds.  He is what, 22 years old if a day.  He is from Texas and now lives in Brooklyn.  I’m looking forward to his next album and what he does over the course of his guaranteed long career. 

Next up, Fountains of Wayne.  I’ve seen these guys about 4-5 times in concert already.  I know all the lyrics, so I can’t help but sing along.  They are the kings of the 3-minute pop song.  They are releasing a new album in a few weeks.  These guys are like a high school band that finally hit it after sticking together until they hit their 40’s.  Maybe that is what I like about them.  The brother of the lead singer was standing with us out in the rain, talking to us, with his kid on his shoulders and taking pictures of his brother.  A real family event. 

We left soaking and happy.  We will all probably come down with brutal colds in the next week, but it was worth it.  There is really nothing like an outdoor concert in Central Park among the trees, the rain and the die-hard audience and the tickets sales all going to a good cause. 

Comments (Archived):

  1. Pointsandfigures

    Sad. John Prine (age 72) got it too but is recovering. Would you have been as offended if it was the flu? 7.8B people in the world. Here are current stats on death rates across the world this year. Let’s assume coronavirus is understated because the Chinese are lying. Double it. Still behind a lot of other things.Coronavirus, 21,000 deaths.Seasonal flu, 113,000.Malaria, 228,000.Suicide, 249,000.Traffic fatalities, 313, almost 314,000.HIV/AIDS, 391,000.Alcohol-related deaths, 581,000.Smoking-related deaths, 1,162,000.Cancer deaths, 1,909,000.Deaths attributed to starvation, 2,382,000An average of 155,224 human deaths occur each day or 56.6MM per year.But, more babies are born that that even with 9.9MM abortions each year.

    1. Gotham Gal

      I’m offended on multiple levels of complete incompetence and arrogance. It’s vile

      1. Pointsandfigures

        sorry if you are offended. it’s just data

      2. JamesHRH

        Being offended is a privilege: poor people don’t get offended; ambitious people don’t get offended ( Dave Chapelle has this right ); engaged people don’t get offended ( Candace Owens just declared that she decided to run for elected office last night / said it was never in her mind to do so but she feels compelled to act, to try to make things better ).Wealthy people who want attention but don’t want to do anything get offended.Also a fact.I never knew who Mr Schlesinger was but wrote a long FB post about his death today. He wrote something that i consider to be perfection – the song That Thing You Do – from the eponymous Tom Hanks movie. Google up the praise from everyone involved in the movie. They hear the song ( there were several writers specking the gig ) & know it is the heart of the entire enterprise, immediately.After some research, it’s clear Mr Schlesinger was a genuine pop music genius. He won a fistful of Emmys including one for this pectacularly perfect opening song for the Tonys telecast:…Genius is rare; narcissism is everywhere these days sadly.I am sad for his family, his friends & the world of music. But not for people who are ‘offended’ by a government managing 335M people through a once a century health issue that was shrouded in a complete deception by the government in China & perpetrated by highly educated but non-serious, politically driven, CYA motivated people at the WHO. It’s not like many of them will die, at least, in comparison to poor people in Dhaka or Jakarta or the wrong zip codes around NYC (… ).And yes, it’s clear that western governments – including those led by progressives like Trudeau or Macron, not just populists like Trump or Johnson – could have done much better. Everyone will the next time around.Btw, about 6 paragraphs from the end, this Bloomberg article –… – notes that the national BioThreat Stockpile was depleted in 2009 due to the N1H1 attack. When a subject matter expert recommended that the Stockpile be replenished, the Obama:Biden administration declined to do so, leaving the Trump administration in an under resourced state.I hope this ‘offends’ you as well.

      3. JLM

        .Isn’t your natural state to be offended at everything since Nov 2016?Isn’t this just the latest chapter in the unending saga of “Trump Bad” and he should not be POTUS cause you don’t like him?Are you offended that the State of NY didn’t follow a recommendation from the NY State Dept of Health in 2015 to add 16,500 ventilators to its “attic stock?”Are you offended that the City of NY allowed the Berger Commission to reduce the number of hospital beds within the city from 93K to 53K over the last 15 yeatrs and shut down entire hospitals?Are you offended that the Obama admin drew down the Strategic National Stockpile for Ebola and failed to replenish it?BTW, it is worth noting that the 2009 Swine Flu epidemic only drew down 25% of the Strategic National Stockpile because the states were much better equipped. Some say the reason NY did not replenish its own stockpiles was because they could pimp support off the Feds.Were you one of the ones who criticized the admin when it closed down travel to/from China on 31 Jan 2020? Like your brethren Hillary, Nancy, Chuck, Joe, Bernie?Later, every person with a brain acknowledged this was the single most important thing that was done and it was a gut decision by that Trump fellow. Same is true for the POTUS decision to close off Europe.It is perfectly fair to criticize the government based on facts. It is unfair to suggest that the Center for Disease Control and Protection is not the finest epidemiological entity on the planet. That is unfair.In the US, the first line of defense on epidemics is the state and country public health departments. The Feds, by law, cannot even assist a state unless the state requests a declaration of an emergency and petitions the Feds for help.NY petitioned the Feds on 7 Mar and the Trump admin approved that request on the same day. Thereafter the Feds turned loose the full power of the Federal gov’t including providing assistance from the CDC, the DHA, the FDA, and the Army Corps of Engineers who have now built 4 hospitals in NYC including converting the Javits Center to a 3000 bed facility in 3 days. Three days after the City of New York gave them the go ahead.That is not incompetence, Joanne. Not by any stretch of the imagination.A quick comparison between the US and the European Union experience indicts your conclusion, but, then, it is based on facts.As of the last comparison by World O Meter (00:00 4-1-2020 GMT):The US (pop 331MM) had 188,592 total cases of the WutangCurse and had suffered 4,055 deaths.The EU (pop 341MM — the western portion of the EU that World O Meter uses for comparison purposes) had 363,150 total cases and had suffered 25,318 deaths.The Trump admin has done a fabulous job of invigorating the Arsenal of Democracy in a World War II reminiscent effort to handle an unprecedented pandemic in record time. Hell, Tito’s Vodka is making hand sanitizer by the barrel in Austn By God Texas. One has to remember not to drink it.It is at times like this that petty grievances must be subordinated to the greater good of the country. These are truly the times that try men’s and women’s souls.What the world does not need is a chorus of the predictable, knee jerk whining and carping that is the residual of the losers from the 2016 election.God bless America. We will get through this and we will emerge stronger than ever.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

    2. DeborahJane

      This was able to be far more contained …it only takes the death of ONE person who is loved …maybe by me…or you…or whoever…to make it an unnecessary death. Had this country started back in January….had this federal government given out more funds…provided PPE…did play games with states whose governors didn’t bow to Trump….then maybe there would be 1 less death…or 10….or 1,000s. Maybe all our medical and healthcare professionals would not be at risk because of the lack of PPE. My cousin is an ER doc at Mass General….I fear every minute for him. Maybe you will be angry when it hits home for you. Stats mean nothing. We all know people die every day. Letting it happen isn’t right.

      1. Pointsandfigures

        I won’t get into a Trump debate. There are plenty of fingers to point which is fruitless right now. Prayers for your brother and people like him. I am glad they are there.First, China totally lied to the entire world. Their communist government chose to lie-they weren’t pressured to lie. The United Nations agency WHO didn’t declare a worldwide pandemic until March 11-pressured by China not to do anything or take action. This goes beyond Trump (who was also delivered articles of Impeachment on Jan 15 precisely when everyone says he should have been concentrating on the virus). Here is a timeline of Chinese government lies: https://www.nationalreview….Even today, when they send supplies to a country that needs them like Italy, there is a quid pro quo attached. This has scary implications going forward for international relations.I think quarantining the entire US has shown that we are taking it seriously. Seeing businesses I am invested in have trouble so it hits home. Trying to figure out how to make my way home, worry about parents etc makes it hit home not to mention how everyone has altered their daily behavior. But to ignore data and to not use good probabilistic statistics to figure out a way to function is incorrect. We have to figure out a way to re-open the economy in a way that feels safe to US citizens. We basically have 30 days to figure that out.Admittedly, it is very hard to get good statistics. They aren’t standardized across the world. China has repeatedly lied about their own statistics. There is an effort in Wuhan by the people to crowdsource them. For example, they estimate 46k deaths in Wuhan alone. Chinese government stats are far lower. It is entirely proper to question and see if we can reformulate models.…Fortunately, there are only a few hotspots in the US. Fortunately, American businesses have pivoted to battling the virus and they will win. We can’t sit still, and not re-opening our economy will be far more damaging to America than COVID 19. This is not a choice between “money and death”.The American health care sector is the most robust in the world and we are seeing it in real time. American business is also adaptable, innovative and robust. We are seeing it in real time.There will be huge repercussions with international relations when it comes to China post crisis. Hard to say exactly, but I suspect we won’t see as many Chinese students in US Universities, and we won’t see as many ships coming across the ocean filling supply chains from China.

      2. JLM

        .Let’s be clear as to timing –1. China had reported a “novel” virus to the World Health Organization on 7 January 2020. There had been reports of a novel virus as early as December 2019, but the Chinese did not report it to the WHO.2. The first case in the USA was identified on 20 January 2020 and was immediately linked to Wuhan, China.3. The World Health Organization declared an “global health emergency” — not a pandemic — on 30 January 2020 when there were fewer than 10,000 cases worldwide.The WHO, arguably influenced by the Chinese, waited until 11 March 2020 to declare a pandemic. By then, the US response was well underway.4. The USA closed off all travel to/from China the NEXT DAY, 31 January 2020 for which the Trump admin was castigated by all the usual critics and carpers.The CDC had been following the virus — as it was for more than 20 other viruses — since the first reports out of China in Dec 2019 when China reported fewer than 20 cases.You may want to check with the governors of both California and New York who have acknowledged the magnitude of the support from the Trump admin.NY (Dem Gov) has received 25X the support that Florida (Rep Gov) has received.The Army Corps of Engineers converted the Javits Center into a 1000 bed hospital in THREE DAYS. The Corps has done an incredible job.The US Navy sent one of two hospital ships to be moored in New York harbor to support the City of New York.We need to fight fair on this and, maybe, let’s cut the political weaponization and crap?JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

        1. JamesHRH

          Anyone criticizing the President only is high. The response to CA & NYC is proof enough.At local levels you just need to compare London Breed in SanFran to Bill DeBlasio in NYC. She’s made a big difference; DeBlasio should be sued for non-performance of his civic duty.

      3. JamesHRH

        Feelings don’t scale.No one likes to hear that but feelings are how every third world country is governed.Western democracies are systems. They need to be maintained & resourced. Feelings are not what a good government ignores, but they are the sizzle on the steak.I hope your cousin takes care of himself and comes through his service to his community unscathed. He has real courage & I doubt he gets offended much.

  2. Tom Labus

    If FatBoy has facts on his side, as the trumpsters here say, then why does he have to continually lie and make new ones up? Also, why can’t he answer a question about anything? He has criminal liability for his calculated lack of response.

    1. JamesHRH

      This is delusional. It’s in line with the ‘if only Barry or Hills were President, then things would be way better.’ Magical thinking.Civic & County officials carry the freight on this issue. Some have failed miserably. Some have not.The WHO has clearly failed.Could Govenors have done better? Likely most.Could the President? Probably.Is the system in disrepair? Undoubtedly. But that’s a multi- administration issue.Feel free to hate the President but deal with reality.

      1. Tom Labus

        I would suggest you enroll in a reading comprehension class. You may be deficient in that area. Also, get a library card and use it when they reopen.

        1. JamesHRH

          Always easy to cop this attitude while typing. Your comments are juvenile Tom.’Calculated lack of response.’? Please.Which current leader of a Western democracy has performed better? Trudeau – please. Johnson – definitely not. Merkel – maybe. Macron – nope. Abe – masks look to have saved his ass and that’s a cultural norm issue. Sweden? Italy?DeBlasio should be in jail, London Breed should be given an award. Our folks here in Houston – Hidalgo @ the County level & Turner @ City – look to be holding there own. The good people of SETX also seem to be taking this seriously. Maybe that’s because they respect Mother Nature down here – she’s whacks us on the regular after all.Some folks @ 3M should be going to jail. Maybe the Pres should have hit them with the WPA too. He says he’s been using it as leverage to drive better performance. Valid position.Again, just say you hate the Orange President and you are letting the thinkig part of your personality take the day off.And, as always, enjoy Grade 8 next fall.