Like Midas in a Polyester Suit

The consequence of listening to, and writing about, Joni Mitchell‘s Mingus yesterday is that today I have had The Dry Cleaner from Des Moines to deal with.  Not in the sense of a problematic domestic service provider, but in the sense of the song becoming an earworm.

Joni Mitchell – The Dry Cleaner From Des Moines

I shouldn’t complain; it’s a great song featuring the crispest of brass arrangements and a percolating Pastorius bass line coupled with some of Joni’s wittiest lyrics bemoaning her lack of fortune in the casinos while in the presence of a player with incredible luck;

But the cleaner from Des Moines
Could put a coin
In the door of a John
And get twenty for one

The persistence of Joni’s hooks did at least give me an idea of somewhere different for today’s portrait; one of the seaside amusement arcades.

It is literally years since I’ve been, but found that little had changed.  The slots machines still featured the same imagery

I’m losing my taste for fruit

The coin cascades remained full of loose change that would never see the inside of someone’s pocket,

and of course there was the scourge of every parent and idol of the Toy Story aliens; the Claw!


Even given the cool and cloudy day outside I was surprised how many people were in here, yet I saw no winners.  Apart from the proprietors of course.  Perhaps this was why the punters were in no hurry to have their picture taken as they left having lost pounds through a diet free method.

So I left the “fool’s paradise” and returned to my usual haunt along the promenade where I spotted Nyasha and his family.  This brave Zimbabwean was fresh from a dip in the North Sea when I encountered him, something I wouldn’t fancy although he assured me it wasn’t too bad!  Good timing on my part to meet him just as I left the flashing lights behind.

It’s just luck!



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