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Gwnewch y pethau bychain

Month: January 2000

Buggy Software

Buggy Software
by Robert Wynne (with a steal from Dave Weingart)
Music: “Little Boxes” by Malvina Reynolds
© 2000

Buggy software on my desktop
Buggy software built of hacky-tacky
Buggy software on my desktop
And it crashes all the time
There’s some perl code
and some C code
And I’d swear that’s some Fortran there
And it’s jumbled like spaghetti
And it crashes all the time

And the programmers at Microsoft
And Apple and Sun Microsystems
Hack out all this buggy software
So it crashes all the time
There’s a C hack
And a Perl hack
And an Object-oriented hack
And they write code in the wee hours
And they’re crashing all the time

And the boys down in Marketing
Design the pretty boxes so
When the code has been hacked up
It can be shipped out on time
There’s a blue box
And a red box
And an round multi-colored box
And they don’t care if the code runs
If it still ships out on time

Buggy software on my desktop
Buggy software built of hacky-tacky
Buggy software on my desktop
And it crashes all the time
There’s some perl code
and some C code
And I’d swear that’s some Pascal there
And it’s jumbled like spaghetti
And it crashes all the time
 

This was inspired by a thread on rec.music.filk. Note that I don’t single out any particular vendor or platform as a target — I wholly subscribe the theory that “All software sucks.”

Catcalls

Catcalls
by Robert Wynne
Music: “Nobody’s Moggie” by Eric Bogle
© 2000

Somebody’s moggy just went splat on the stage
Somebody’s pussy thrown from just outside of range
Someone’s former feline, which landed with a thunk
Perhaps they wanted me to know they thought my new act stunk…

Yesterday when I played here, I was not aware at all
That those were jeers not cheers that greeted every curtain’s fall
But now the audience has booed me off
With a very strange cat-call
They’re all throwing moggies now…

Michael Liebmann and I did a filk demo for The Atlanta Science Fiction Society in September of 2000, which we then reported on in rec.music.filk. I commented that this was the first time I had ever performed music for an indifferent audience, which was an interesting and educational experience. Someone commented that indifferent was better than having them throw rotting flora at you, to which someone remarked that rotting flora was better still than rotting fauna. Mark Mandel said that the traditional form of the latter was a dead cat, and, well, this was the result. This is a show-stopper, which is why it ends after one verse.

Fare Thee Well, Lithuanian Maiden

Fare Thee Well, Lithuanian Maiden
Lyrics by Robert Wynne and Jeffrey Williams
Music by Robert Wynne
© 2000

Fare thee well, Lithuanian maiden.
I pray thee safe passage to Baltic’s coast
Travelling in a car well laiden
With blackmarket goods where needed most

For there you’ll meet a man named Raoul
Strange golden jewelry he will give
My goods to him you must turn o’er
At least, that is, if you want to live

Then return to me, my Lithuanian maiden,
Linger not while the moon hangs in the sky
Bring me that which Raoul has forsaken,
Swift as an arrow, sraight as the crow flies.

Ask me no questions, you do not want to know
No answers have I that would settle your heart
Just do this thing that I now ask of you
The sooner from me you should freely part.

Then drive down the road, my sweet little maiden
Let the car roll for all of twenty feet.
Then count your way to one hundred slowly
And do not look back, not even a peek

And when you look back, long shall I be gone
Gone upon the wind, stepped behind the sun
And never again shall you hear of me
Till I call you again for that long
Baltic run
 

This one is a bit cryptic. Jeff and I wrote this as a round robin — He offered the first verse, and I replied with the second, to which he replied, until it was finished. The words got polished a bit when I set it to music, and only afterwards did I go back and fill in what the song is actually about. I intend to write it up as a short story one day.

Fund Me Now

Fund Me Now
by Robert Wynne (from an idea by Dan Reitman)
Music: “Hold Me Now” by The Thompson Twins
© 2000

I have an idea
A surefire scheme
A vision of making a few million off of technology dreams
There’s just one problem
I don’t have the cash
If I could just find some investors I’m sure we’d be rich in a flash

Oh-oh, fund me now
Oh-oh, fund my start
New VC
Is the hardest part, the hardest part

You say I’m a dreamer
We’re a dozen a dime
But this one’s a sure thing, I promise we’ll turn out
A profit this time
We’ll create us a new firm
That will draw in the dough
All we need is that first little push to get started
Can you make us go?

(chorus)

You ask for the numbers
What’s our business plan
But those are just details, and don’t you agree
Our idea is just grand
We’re not asking for billions
Just a few million bucks
You’ll make it all back in the end, all we need
is a whole lot of luck

(chorus)

 

Someone on rec.music.filk posted a filk of the Thompson Twin’s “Doctor, Doctor” titled “Dotcom, Dotcom”, and Dan Reitman suggested someone should write “Fund Me Now” to this tune. I picked it up and ran with it.

One of my favourite performances of this song was the first time I played it for my friend Robert Cooke, who writes grants for a living and actually gets to listen to just this sort of pitch every week. I’ve never seen someone laugh so hard at a song in my life.

Music Of The Cat

Music of the Cat
by Robert Wynne
Music: “Music of the Night” from the musical Phantom of the Opera
© 2000

Meowing, slinking
Hide under the sofa
Running aimless
Under and then over
Stop to lick your fur
Then remember where you were
And give out a plaintive mew
And crouch down flat
And start to make the music of the cat

Prancing, pawing
Partake any pleasure
Balls of yarn are
Such a priceless treasure
Toss it in the air
Then pretend that you don’t care
If a human observes you
engaged in that
For they can’t hear the music of the cat

Close your eyes and surrender to an hours sleep
Twitch your ear lest they think that you don’t hear
Warm and safe on the top of the TV
Only cats can know the true meaning of free

Prowling, pouncing
Rub against a pants leg
Wishing, hoping
But far too proud to beg
Curl up in a lap
Take yourself another nap
And if they stroke your fur
You’ll purr for that
And once more make the music of the cat
I wrote this one day while observing one of my cats being playful, unaware that I was watching. The moment she DID realize, she suddenly became very dignified and intent on washing her paw. I know too many parodies of this tune have been written already, but it really seemed to fit.

This song was published in the Contata 3 songbook

Play It…AGAIN?

Play It…AGAIN?
by Robert Wynne and Jeffrey Williams
Music: “Circle Sky” by Michael Nesmith
© 2000

My old hits
Bored to bits
Requesting
Same old thing

Oh, do I have to play that once again?
Dear God, do I have to play that once again?

Played this song
For so long
Rather do
Something new

But now I have to play this once again!
Yes, now I have to play this once again!

It’s a very tedious thing
But no one out there understands
But I sing what I must just to please
All my fans….all my fans

Trapped by my
Success I
Grin and play
Every day

And now I’ve gotten through it once again
Thank goodness I have gotten to the end.
This song was written on the way back from seeing Mickey Dolenz in concert, and I was asking myself “What on earth must it be like to have to play the same songs, over and over again, for thirty years?” In a way, I can guess. There are times I look at all my collected songs and think “I hate everything in this book and I don’t want to play any of it.”

Ramblin’ Fan

Ramblin’ Fan
by Robert Wynne
Music: “Ramblin Man” by the Allman Brothers
© 2000

Lord I was born a rambling fan
going to conventions and doing the best I can
So when its time for the dead dog I hope you’ll understand
That I was born a rambling fan

My father was a filker from New Hampshire
My mother published zines in New Jersy
And I was born in the back row of a panel talk
in Massachussetts back at Boskone 3

(chorus)

Left a con in New Orleans this morning
Next weekend is Nashville, Tennessee
Every weekend there’s another convention to attend
And Worldcon’s where I hope they’ll bury me

(chorus x2)

 

I wrote this in the car on the way back from dinner at Gafilk 2000. As a note to the literal minded, I don’t have family in New Hampshire or New Jersey, and I was 31 years old the first time I even visited Massachussetts. So this song isn’t remotely autobiographical. For the record.

This song was published in the Gafilk 2001 songbook.

The Work Of The Drummers

The Work of the Drummers
by Bill Sutton and Robert Wynne
Music: “The Work of the Weavers” (aka “Drink to the Health of the Dorsai”)
© 2000

We are gathered here to sing some songs tonight
With our songbooks on our back and our axes in plain sight
There’s not a man among us who couldn’t get it right
If it weren’t for the work of the drummers

If it weren’t for the drummers, what would you do?
You wouldn’t have nobody to feel superior to
You wouldn’t have nobody to beat you black and blue
If it weren’t for the work of the drummers
 

Bill and I wrote this to annoy his wife, Brenda, who is an excellent drummer and who, i might add, can play percussion behind me anytime she wants. It was all in good fun Brenda…..honest…. please put the tipper down…..ow!

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