Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Handcuffs Don't Look So Good on a Well Dressed Man

With my new job I now have what is known as a commute - meaning highway driving  - mostly watching every other car pass me. 

Speed limits aside, I had to find ways to entertain myself during the daily automotive hours.  I started with recorded books but found the changing of CDs annoying and lane waveringly dangerous.  So I resorted to the trusty Sirius radio and all sorts of genres -  some of them quite new to me.

Anyway, one morning I happened upon station 82 Radio Classics. "One Way Passage" was in progress with the divine William Powell (Dan) of "The Thin Man" fame. 


Not only was I immediately hooked, but the imagination was entranced.  Grumpily, I could not hear the entire program because I had to go into work.

Subsequently, a bit of research ensued.  The program was a Lux Radio Theater presentation from 1939.  Programs are available here. I listened to the whole thing on my iphone later.  Mr. Cecile B. DeMille was the eloquent host. Yes, he is referred to as "Mr."

Some highlights.

Dan and Joan drink paradise cocktails while on a luxirous ocean liner that is sailing from Singapore.  They then smash their glasses.

Kay Francis plays the terminally ill Joan. 


Kay was born in Oklahoma City.  Having spent a great deal of time there, I never heard anyone with quite the accent and enunciation that Kay employs.  The old time Hollywood "to", "do", and "r" as in "charrrming."  Rather nice to hear considering the bastardization of grammar in today's media.

Meanwhile, there are sponsor commercials which advise that:

 "Soft smooth skin is important in winning love and holding it."

"Lux toilet soap (that name by modern standards!) removes dust and dirt and stale cosmetics and thoroughly guards against the pore choking that causes cosmetic skin."  - Pore choking?

Lots of smarty pants lines such as:

  • Handcuffs don't look so good on a well dressed man.

  • My mother warned me against well dressed strangers.

  • Paradise for two. - a toast by Dan and Joan

  • Put the rod away, Steve.

  • Baby, you sure stuck to my tails.

  • He'll be swinging for murder.

  • I got a chicken ranch in Petaluma.

  • His mind is as sharp as his pencil.
 Since Dan and Joan, I've listened to a few other programs including "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" with Carole Lombard and Bob Hope(?). - more on this in perhaps a later post.  Anyway, I love the way these shows make my commute shorter and ignite the imagination.  I was there with Dan and Joan on that ocean liner...

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