Pixel Scroll 12/31/21 I Have No Idea What This Pixel Scroll Title Is Alluding To. Help!

(1) THE UPPER CRUST. Abigail Nussbaum, who read 86 books this year, says these are the best — “2021, A Year in Reading: Best Books of the Year” at Asking the Wrong Questions.

Under Honorable Mentions —

The Ministry for the Future by Kim Stanley Robinson – My review of this novel was decidedly mixed and frustrated, and as I wrote there, I found the actual experience of reading it rather challenging. But as I come to close out the year, I can’t help but appreciate this effort, perhaps the first novel to not only address climate change but imagine how we might go about dealing with it, and what will be required to accomplish this. It’s not a perfect novel, but it might be a necessary one.

(2) ATOP MOUNT TO BE VIEWED. Abigail Nussbaum did a separate “Best TV of 2021” post for Lawyers, Guns & Money.

…I take two lessons from the state of the TV medium in 2021. The first is that this was the year that taught us the difference between “expensive” and “good”. So many shows came out the gate this year with stratospheric production values, huge names before and behind the camera, and stunning locations, but still felt as if little or no thought was given to creating coherent, satisfying stories. The Disney+ MCU shows are exhibit A of this phenomenon: five very different shows with unbelievable budgets and star-studded casts, none of which quite managed to stick the landing. But other streamers fell into the same trap. Apple TV+ produced an eight-episode adaptation of The Mosquito Coast that shot in the desert on the US-Mexican border and in picturesque locations in California and Mexico, but apparently no one involved considered that audiences might be put off if the central family didn’t even reach the Mosquito Coast until the season finale. Netflix poured millions upon millions of dollars into comic books adaptations like Sweet Tooth and Jupiter’s Legacy, while seeming to have skimped on the scripts. (To be fair, Jupiter’s Legacy also looked like ass; I really hope there was some serious money-laundering going on because otherwise I just can’t explain it.)

(3) CIRCLING THE SQUARE. It’ll be a big deal again in Times Square tonight. Daily Kos explains the tradition: “Why do we drop a ball on New Year’s Eve? It once saved lives, but now it’s just fun”.

… But why a giant ball?  Where did this come from?

The short answer is that it’s inspired by other giant balls whose function was to indicate time.  I say “was”, because the purpose of a “time ball” is now pragmatically obsolete, and almost all of these are gone.  But one of the very earliest time balls, atop the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, England, has been dropped each and every day since 1833.  It is raised halfway up its post a few minutes prior, to give notice, and then it is dropped at exactly the stroke of 1 P.M.  Bongggg!

(4) CALMING THE DISCOURSE. [Item by Olav Rokne.] In an excellent, free Patreon post, Hugo-finalist fan writer Jason Sanford examines the troubling trend of targeted harassment campaigns against creators and pundits within the SFF genre, and asks how we as a community can do better. “Genre Grapevine on SF/F Abuse and Harassment Campaigns”.

…I’ve been on the receiving end of these mass harassment and abuse campaigns. When you’re subjected to harassment and abuse your world compresses to a single, painful point, like a black hole that traps you against your will. Nothing you say or do makes a difference. People can tell you the harassment and abuse is unjustified and that you did nothing wrong. But none of that matters.

Because in the end you are merely a convenient target for people who are deliberately refusing to see you as human….

(5) SAWYER Q&A. Host Mary Ito, previously with the CBC and TVOntario, interviews Robert J. Sawyer for The CRAM Podcast ~ Extraordinary Ideas Unleashed.

We all wonder about our future – post pandemic. And it’s something sci-fi writer Robert Sawyer thinks about a lot. His writing has captivated audiences with explorations of alternate worlds. Hear what one of Canada’s most fascinating big thinkers has to say about OUR world, and the transformation it’s undergoing. His audio series “The Downloaded” about a metaphorical post pandemic world will be available Fall 2022 on Audible. Robert Sawyer’s most recent book is “The Oppenheimer Alternative.”

(6) FREE TAFF BOOK. Ah! Sweet Laney! The Writings of a Great Big Man is the latest addition to TAFF’s library of free downloads. The reissue of Robert Lichtman’s and Pat Virzis’s compilation of Francis T. Laney’s other fanwriting (i.e. not Ah! Sweet Idiocy!) That will be a very familiar name if you happen to have just read about 1940s LASFS in Bixelstrasse. The collection is available in multiple formats at the Trans-Atlantic Fan Fund’s website, where they also hope you’ll make a little donation to the fund. 

Though best remembered for his infamous 1948 memoir and polemic Ah! Sweet Idiocy! (also in the TAFF ebook library), Francis Towner Laney also published much other notable work in his own and others’ fanzines. In addition to a generous helping of Laney’s best writing other than Ah! Sweet Idiocy!, it includes a new introduction by Robert Lichtman and memoirs of “FTL” by Robert Bloch, Charles Burbee, Terry Carr and Jack Speer.

This first ebook edition is produced with the kind permission of Robert Lichtman and the welcome support of Pat Virzi, who provided the text in PDF format, now also available at Bill Burns’s eFanzines.com. The PDF download button above gives this 10Mb PDF (with all print layout, artwork, photographs etc) rather than the usual quick-and-dirty conversion from ebook format.

(7) SLF NEEDS GRANT JURORS. The Speculative Literature Foundation announced on Facebook they need jurors to read applications for the A.C. Bose Grant.

Ideally, we’re looking for people who are well read in science fiction, fantasy and horror, but we’d also like a mix of readers, writers, librarians, teachers, editors, etc. who are capable of judging literary quality in a work. The honorarium is $25.

Please note: We’d love to have South Asian and South Asian diaspora jurors for the AC Bose Grant, but it’s not a requirement.

Please contact Catherine ([email protected]) for more information.

(8) NEW ZEALAND AWARD TAKING NOMINATIONS. SFFANZ News declares “Nominations for the 2022 Sir Julius Vogel awards Open”. Guidelines at the link.

Sir Julius Vogel Award nominations for the 2021 calendar year are now open. The nomination period will close at 11:59pm on 31st March 2022. The SJV awards recognise excellence in science fiction, fantasy, or horror works created by New Zealanders and New Zealand residents, and first published or released in the 2021 calendar year. Anyone can make a nomination and it is free!

(9) TANGLED WEBS. [Item by Martin Morse Wooster.] This Spider-Man blooper reel dropped two days ago.  I thought what was most interesting was how much of the Spider-Man:  No Way Home sets were real and what was CGI.

(10) BETTY WHITE. Actress Betty White died today, a few weeks short of her hundredth birthday. The New York Times obituary is here: “Betty White, a TV Fixture for Seven Decades, Is Dead at 99”. Although White performed a vast number of roles in her long career, only a few were genre. She was a Woman in Window encountered by the Dynamic Duo in Return to the Batcave (2003). She did voice work in several animated Christmas movies, and also on the Hercules TV series (1999), The Simpsons (as herself, 2007), The Lorax (2012), SpongeBob SquarePants (2016), and as a toy tiger named Bitey White in Toy Story 4.

Betty White, who created two of the most memorable characters in sitcom history, the nymphomaniacal Sue Ann Nivens on “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and the sweet but dim Rose Nylund on “The Golden Girls” — and who capped her long career with a comeback that included a triumphant appearance as the host of “Saturday Night Live” at the age of 88 — died on Friday. She was 99.


1931 [Item by Cat Eldridge.] Ninety years ago, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, a horror film directed by Rouben Mamoulian premiered. The screenplay was by Samuel Hoffenstein and Percy Heath. It starred Starring Fredric March, Miriam Hopkins and Rose Hobart. It was a box office success making on piece three million on a budget of a million dollars. Critics loved it, and March won the award for Best Actor, sharing the award with Wallace Beery for The Champ. It has a most excellent eighty percent rating among audience reviewers at Rotten Tomatoes. 


[Compiled by Cat Eldridge.]

  • Born December 31, 1937 Anthony Hopkins, 84. I think one of his most impressive roles was as Richard in The Lion in Winter but we can’t even call that genre adjacent, can we? Well, we can as it’s alternate history. He was, during that period, also King Claudius in Hamlet. I’ll say playing Ian McCandless in Freejack is his true genre role, and being Professor Abraham Van Helsing in Bram Stoker’s Dracula is a plum of a genre role. It’s a better role that he as Odin has the MCU film franchise. What else to note? What have I missed that I should note? 
  • Born December 31, 1943 Ben Kingsley, 78. Speaking of Kipling, he voiced Bagherra in the live action adaptation that Disney did of The Jungle Book. He was also in Iron Man 3 as Trevor Slattery, a casting not well received. He’s The Hood in Thunderbirds (directed by Frakes btw), Charles Hatton in A Sound of Thunder and Merenkahre in Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb, the third of three great popcorn films. 
  • Born December 31, 1945 Connie Willis, 76. She has won eleven Hugo Awards and seven Nebula Awards for her work, a feat that impresses even me! Of her works, I’m most pleased by To Say Nothing of the DogDoomsday Book and Bellwether, an offbeat novel look at chaos theory. I’ve not read enough of her shorter work to give an informed opinion of it, so do tell me what’s good there. She’s very well stocked at the usual suspects and a number of her works qualify as Meredith moments. 
  • Born December 31, 1949 Ellen Datlow, 72. Let’s start this Birthday note by saying I own a complete set of The Year’s Best Fantasy & Horror which yes, I know it was titled The Year’s Best Fantasy for the first year. And I still read stories from them from time to time.  If that was all she had done, she’d have been one of our all-time anthologists but she also, again with Terri Windling, did the Fairy Tale and Mythic Fiction series, both of which I highly recommend. On her own, she has the ongoing Best Horror of Year, now a decade old, and the Tor.com anthologies which I’ve not read but I assume collect the fiction from the site.  Speaking of Tor.com, she’s an editor there, something she’s also done at Nightmare MagazineOmni, the hard copy magazine and online, Sci Fiction webzine and Subterranean Magazine. And yes, she won a number of Hugos for her editing including one this year which she richly deserved. 
  • Born December 31, 1953 Jane Badler, 68. I first encountered her on the Australian-produced Mission Impossible where she played Shannon Reed for the two seasons of that superb series. She’s apparently best known as Diana, the main antagonist on V, but I never saw any of that series being overseas at the time. She shows up in the classic Fantasy IslandSir Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Lost World, Bitch, Popcorn & Blood and Virtual Revolution.
  • Born December 31, 1958 Bebe Neuwirth, 63. Ok she’s had but one television SF credit to her name which is playing a character named Lanel in the “First Contact” episode of the Next Gen series during season four, but I found a delightful genre credential for her. From April 2010 to December 2011, she was Morticia Addams in the Broadway production of The Addams Family musical! The show itself was ongoing up until the Pandemic started. 
  • Born December 31, 1959 Val Kilmer, 62. Lead role in Batman Forever where I thought he did a decent job, Madmartigan in Willow, Montgomery in The Island of Dr. Moreau, voiced both Moses and God in The Prince of Egypt, uncredited role as El Cabillo in George and the Dragon and voiced KITT in the not terribly well-conceived reboot of Knight Rider. Best role? Ahhh that’d be Doc Holliday in Tombstone. Nope, not even genre adjacent but I really, really love that film. 

(13) JOINING GENRES. Clarion West will be offering a free online discussion – “Fantastic Intersections: Speculative Fiction and Romance” — on January 29, 2022, 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. Pacific. The participants will be Zen Cho, S. A. (Austin) Chant, C. L. Polk, KJ Charles, and L. Penelope, moderated by Rashida J. Smith. Register at the link.

From the sublime and magical to the stirring and steamy, storylines centering BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ characters are flourishing in the romance and speculative genres. We’ll tackle the nuance of building romance into the plot vs. romance as the plot, the role of the HEA or HFN in representation, and the future of the fantastic in romance.

(14) GAME WITH A STRONG STORY. Laura “Tegan” Gjovaag broke her usual pattern by buying this game on release day and it worked out well: “Video Game Review – Ruined King: A League of Legends Story” at Bloggity-Blog-Blog-Blog.

…The story drove me on, because I wanted to read it all and find out what really happened. There is a central mystery to it – the opening cinematic sets it up beautifully. Why did the Blessed Isles fall? What is the Harrowing? You get some solid answers by the end. It’s like reading a novel while playing it as well. It was an experience I very much enjoyed. In addition to the main story there were the individual tales of each of our six main characters as well as bits of lore featuring dozens of other characters, some related and some not, that you just find as you explore the world….

(15) THE ENVELOPE, PLEASE. In the Washington Post, David Betancourt and Michael Cavna rank the 12 best performances by actors in superhero movies, including nine from the MCU and three from the DCEU. “Of ‘Spider-Man,’ ‘Shang-Chi’ and ‘The Suicide Squad’: The year’s top 12 performances from superhero titles”.

… Anchoring the success of these films were the layered human performances amid all the green-screen effects. Here are a dozen actors who especially delivered depth within their superhero universes…

4. Margot Robbie (‘The Suicide Squad’)

Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn in 2021’s “The Suicide Squad.” (Warner Bros./Everett Collection)

Playing the relentlessly resourceful Harley Quinn,Robbie is reliably the most electric presence in DC’s sprawling team-up movies, dropping coy one-liners with as much force as her violent blows. She again steals entire scenes in James Gunn’s “The Suicide Squad,” and with each own-the-screen DC outing, including “Birds of Prey,” she proves that her radiant Harley could carry solo movies in between the “Suicide” squadfests.

(16) WITH SHARP, POINTY TEETH. [Item by Michael Toman.] Have to wonder what, say, Dylan Thomas, (“A Bright Child From Wales!”) would have done with this Late-Breaking Holiday News Update. “Bloodthirsty, ‘Psycho’ Squirrel Attacks 18 in Small Town Christmas Rampage” reports Newsweek. Will there be a movie from some of the Folks at The Asylum, the ones who gifted us with the “Sharknado Franchise?” Or maybe this needs to become an Uncuddly, Unwarm, Unfuzzy Picture Book? “What a world, what a world!”

A Welsh town is being held in the grip of fear by a most unusual source, a grey squirrel that is attacking residents.

Wales Online reported that the serial squirrel has indiscriminately attacked pensioners, pets, and children, jumping at people taking out the garbage, and been chasing after people down streets as they flee.

(17) DIANA GALLAGHER VIDEOS. Fanac.org’s Edie Stern introduces these Eighties recordings of Diana Gallagher singing filksongs.  

Diana Gallagher is now known primarily for her science fiction media novels. However, especially early in her fannish career, she also impressed as a filk songwriter/performer, and a fan artist. She received several Pegasus Awards, as well as the 1988 Fan Artist Hugo Award. As her songs often show, Diana was also an avid supporter of the space program. She passed away in December 2021.

This recording was made in our living room in the early 1980s. At that time, she was a member of the local science fiction group, and an avid filker. She was our friend. This recording is excerpted from a longer filk recording, and features her performances of five songs (of which 4 were written by her). Many thanks to our Filk Consultant, Eli Goldberg and to our Sound Editor, Luke Bretscher for their help with this recording.

Here are links to all five videos — 1. Planetbound Lovers (0:05) 2. Following (2:52) 3. Free Fall (5:23) 4. Starsong (7:30) 5. Mary O’Meara (10:12)

(18) VIDEO OF THE DAY. [Item by Martin Morse Wooster.] In “Honest Game Trailers:  Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl,” Fandom Games says this Nickleodeon smash compilation is meant for gamers who ask, “Say, what would happen if Garfield fought SpongeBob?” and that Nickelodeon is basically a network for “not so nuanced sex jokes and covering kids in sludge.”

[Thanks to Mike Kennedy, Martin Morse Wooster, JJ, John King Tarpinian, Olav Rokne, Daniel Dern, Andrew Porter, Michael Toman, and Cat Eldridge for some of these stories. Title credit belongs to File 770 contributing editor of the day Jon Meltzer.]

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42 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 12/31/21 I Have No Idea What This Pixel Scroll Title Is Alluding To. Help!

  1. (10) Sigh. 🙁

    (11) That is my favorite version of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. The DVD edition I have has great commentary plus restored scenes. I don’t know why there isn’t a Blu-Ray edition. 🙁

  2. Happy New Year!

    “How many Files to Scrollbylon? Can I get there by Pixel-light?”

    ETA: Location: New Zealand. 4pm on New Year’s Day & the world hasn’t ended.

  3. Should Scrolled acquaintance be forgot and never Time-Binded to Mind of My Mind? We’ll take a cup of Bheer of Smoothness yet for days of Scrolled lang syne

  4. Happy New Year to everyone! Due to my neurological meds, I’ll be non-alcoholic as I’ve been for the past four years, so I’m toasting it with hot chocolate I think.

    Now listening to Consider Phlebas

  5. (9) Andrew (not Werdna) : oh, the embarrassment!

    (I could see you were avoiding saying that.)

  6. Soon Lee: New Year’s Day & the world hasn’t ended.

    Great news! Then I can take my foot off the brakes.

  7. 12) I’d nominate Westworld (the series) and Real Genius for Hopkins and Kilmer respectively.

  8. 12) Bebe Neuwirth as Tabba Schwartzkopf in “Wild Palms”, an SF tv miniseries from 1993.

  9. 12) I know Disney described The Jungle Book as ‘live action’, but the only thing live in that movie was the kid playing Mowgli.

  10. Michael Burianyk says ) Bebe Neuwirth as Tabba Schwartzkopf in “Wild Palms”, an SF tv miniseries from 1993.

    Shudder — I prefer to forget about that series.

    Now listening to the BBC full cast audio production of Dune which is quite stellar.

  11. 1
    That’s accurate.

    Good luck. I don’t think it’s fixable. Maybe we need a KSR for internettling, to suggest a way through.

    Goodbye, Sue Ann Nivens.

    Two giants’ birthdays. Datlow’s standalone theme anthologies are also reliable. You can’t go wrong with her byline, I think, if you’re in the mood for dark and unsettling.

    I’d recommend Willis’s Christmas stories which appeared in Asimov’s over the decades. My favorite is Newsletter. At the Rialto, which appeared in Datlow’s Omni, if you like madcap. Cibola for historical reckoning. Death on the Nile if you like your Christie with some existential gravity. Willis is funny, but when she gets serious, damn.

    Watched What Do We See When we Look at.the Sky last.night. recommended. However, it is long. No, really. Take a snack, wear a diaper long.

  12. I went into Matrix Resurrections telling people I heard it wasn’t too much about the preceding films and tbg n zbivr jurer Xrnah Errirf jngpurf uvzfrys fgne va gubfr svyzf.

  13. Happy New Year and here’s to a better 2022!

    (9) TANGLED WEBS. It’s interesting to see the intersection of practical effects, stunt work, and green/blue screen. Despite the video title, there weren’t any bloopers — just a few shots of actors goofing off. I kinda forgot Holland was English; his American accent’s good.

    (10) BETTY WHITE. I read about this last night. ;-( Rest in peace, you funny, beautiful, beloved woman!

    (12) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS. Bebe Neuwirth was also in Jumanji! 🙂 (ETA: The original one.)

    (15) THE ENVELOPE, PLEASE. Whoops, I haven’t seen most of these, but I do want to see “Spider-Man: No Way Home” at some point.

    (16) WITH SHARP, POINTY TEETH. Good grief! It sounds like the sequel-mashup to “Birds” & “Psycho”: “PSYCHO SQUIRREL”!!!

    . . . . .

    @Jon Meltzer & @Mike Glyer: Hehehe for the self-referential Pixel Scroll title.

    @Andrew (not Werdna): “Should Scrolled acquaintance . . . (etc.)” 😉 Yay!

    Currently reading one of my Xmas presents: “Far Sector” written by N.K. Jemisin and art by Jamal Campbell.

  14. rcade,
    Matrix: Resurrections is very meta. It was not a necessary movie, but I enjoyed the playful way it was self-referential, recursive, remixing, and Carrie-Anne Moss & Keanu Reeves were completely comfortable inhabiting the Trinity & Neo characters.

  15. Happy new year, all!

    I was with some friends last night (pretty much the same derby folks who showed up for Solstice, give or take a couple skaters) and one of them was talking about how weird it felt to celebrate New Years when not in U.S. Eastern Time Zone, and asked me what did I do what with growing up in the Central Time Zone.

    “I, er, waited until midnight local time and then said Happy New Year?”

    “But what about the BALL?!”

    Apparently some of us really imprinted on watching the ball drop in Times Square, and some of us didn’t, and it makes a difference.

    In any case, we did things by Mountain Time Zone last night, that being where we were, and someone brought a whole bunch of grapes and told us about the tradition out of Spain of eating 12 grapes as the clock strikes 12, one on each stroke of midnight, thus ensuring 12 months of good fortune, and this sparked a small amount of drama (“are you supposed to swallow them whole?” “Do you just sorta chipmunk-cheek them?” “Do you really have to eat one grape per second to get good luck?” “Do they maybe have smaller grapes in Spain?” “OH MY GOD YOU INFANTS DO I HAVE TO TEACH YOU HOW TO EAT?!”) which I’m sure will be in-group entertainment for months to come.

    We just watched Matrix: Resurrections tonight and enjoyed it very much. Co-signing everything Soon Lee said about it.

  16. You picked that as the title?

    I don’t know whether to be flattered or be annoyed. That was a serious question!!

    Mike needs at least a coauthorship credit there …

  17. @Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little, I’ve live in Central time my whole life. When I was a child, my very clever parents would put on the TV to one of the big national stations that covered New Years in Times Square, we’d watch the ball drop (at 11pm), my parents would shout “Happy New Year!” and then send us all to bed…..

  18. Jon Meltzer: It appealed to me as a title because I expect on any given day somebody feels that way. Sometimes I need the reference explained, too.

  19. @Jon Meltzer: Be flattered! Personally, I love the occasional self-referential title like that, even if unintentional on your part in this case. 🙂

    @Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little: ROFL re. the commentary on the grape thing (which BTW is new to me). 😀

    Re. the ball dropping, that was never a thing in my family. The first time I heard of it and saw it on TV was with friends, as an adult. I was like WUT. I still don’t really get why people outside of NYC watch it, but most folks I know do seem to watch it, and it’s this whole entertainment thing now. Over time, I came to grasp a benefit: a shared, “official” countdown & midnight (er, in this time zone) instead of looking at a clock or phone — something for everyone to focus on to count down. (My friends don’t seem to pay much attention to the entertainment on TV before/after!) I mean, we all have identical time on our cell phones now, thanks to Modern Technology, but some traditions endure. 😉

    Shoot, I just found out this year that there’s a new ball each year! Good grief. I’m still a neophyte with this NYC ball dropping thing, apparently.


  20. @Kendall
    I don’t really get the Times Square ball-dropping thing either, but I didn’t grow up with it. (I don’t think we did much for New Year’s Eve.)

  21. @Jeffrey Jones: Another Lombardo fan here. Hasn’t felt like a New Year since he’s gone.

    Another New Years Eve thing for me was watching Yellow Submarine which local stations showed that night for some reason

  22. @ Andrew (not Werdna)

    Another New Years Eve thing for me was watching Yellow Submarine which local stations showed that night for some reason.

    Before Fox devoured DC’s Metromedia Channel 5, the station always played Yellow Submarine in December and as a kid I counted the months until they showed it.

  23. I think I watched it on WNEW Channel 5, New York, which has also been absorbed by Fox

  24. @Cassy B. – that was some hot genius on the part of your parents and I’m amazed mine managed to waste that opportunity.

    Honestly, though, I don’t remember being a kid with a bedtime agitating for staying up until midnight for New Year’s Eve, although I do remember waiting for midnight to say Happy New Year with the other kids, and competing to be the first to say it. Maybe our parents just suspended bedtimes on NYE without us having to beg much?

    I remember the big treat was all the kids and our parents out on the street after dark, the parents shooting off bottle rockets and Roman candles and lighting Black Cats (your basic noise-maker firecracker) and giving us sparklers to hold. We always insisted that they try to get a bottle rocket to explode close enough to a street light to make it turn off, because that counted as High Entertainment. Once we’d done the fireworks, I think we kinda felt like we’d done our duty for welcoming in the new year. Saying “Happy New Year” at midnight was fun, but the annual amateur firework extravaganza was the real urgent Musn’t Miss It activity.

    And watching the ball drop on TV just never made it onto the list, somehow.


    (12) There is one countdown to midnight I have begun observing recently, that has to be in Eastern Time Zone no matter where I’m at, and that’s toasting Ellen Datlow’s birthday with a shot of scotch over Twitter as December 30 becomes December 31.

  25. Am I crazy, or is it not the case that TV stations in later time zones show the ball drop on a time delay, at midnight local time?

  26. That’s my recollection for as long as I’ve been old enough to pay attention to the ball drop at all. Now, I grew up in California: maybe things were different in Central time.

  27. For us, the Ball at Midnight has had a different tone.
    When we needed a new house, and wanted to own it, Diana and I went dutifully to each option and waltzed in the largest room. If it was not big enough to waltz, we crossed it off the list. When we found the house which the family named Greyhaven (it was grey) we had found it.
    And we promptly threw our New Year’s Ball, with all night waltlzing.
    At Midnight the recorded music, carefully timed, is the Waltz Midnight from Prokofiev’s “Cinderella,” where the orchestra strikes the hour as everyone madly whirls in the near darkness. Those of us to whom it is appropriate usually kiss at the finale.
    We sing auld lang syne, and then the first waltz after midnight is the Carousel Waltz by Richard Rogers, because he died that night.
    We’ve been doing it for fifty years or so, but the last two years we have not had a Ball because of Covid.

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