Monday, November 23, 2009


Here's a premise for an old-timey showtune: emotions are primary colors.

There are some basic emotions--like red, yellow, and blue--that mix to form the rest.

Love and hate are on the palette, and melancholy too. Love mixes with hate to form envy; melancholy with hate to form shame; and different amounts of love-paint and melancholy-tint come together to create just about every other sensation on the spectrum.

The song might go something like this:

You've got me feeling all yella-green
and ev'ry color that makes me live.
You're all kinds-a shades I've never seen.
And in my heart. . .you're. . .Roy. . .G. . .Biv.

(Verse two rhymes "Schenectady" with "Tweedle-dee-dee," naturally).

This is all to say that I sometimes feel an emotion, when watching a great performance, that I'd like to dub "Gene Kelly Green." It's somewhere far-east of envy, but it's not quite unadulterated love.

See, Gene Kelly is my all-time favorite performer. Whenever I see him tap-dance, croon, and pick-up ladies in 1950s Paris, I feel uplifted. But I wish, for a small second, that I could be just as much of a show-stopper.

(Pardon the lyrics of this song, which may be--somehow--worse than those recorded above!)

I don't feel jealous--I'm always smiling--but I do feel nostalgic, almost, admiring what and how much people can be.

I felt Gene Kelly Green last weekend watching Joseph Gordon-Levitt on Saturday Night Live. To my great consternation, I can't show you what incited that feeling because the online video has been confiscated; but suffice it to say it's the only thing that has ever made me give my television set a standing ovation.

Here's hoping I can scrawl something down someday that gets me out of my own chair. Right now, I'm stuck, as usual, spinning my roller-skate wheels, trying to come up with a jazzier ending.

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