Listen to: “Remember My Forgotten Man”

It took me a long time to see “Gold Diggers of 1933,” but I am so glad I did, because of this master stroke that came at the end.

Joan Blondell

Joan Blondell in “Gold Diggers of 1933.”

“Remember My Forgotten Man” is first spoken by Joan Blondell, then sung by an uncredited Etta Moten.

The singing is beautiful, a haunting, measured wail of heartache–be sure to listen all the way through the clip below.

Yet it was the spoken part that chilled me.

Equal parts restrained, embittered, and compassionate, you get the sense that the speaker wants to sink to her knees through the sheer weight of the injustice dealt out to those who’ve fought for our freedom.

Instead, she has to stay strong both for herself and for all the forgotten souls.

But she’s angry, too, oh, is she ever.

Give it a try.

“Remember my forgotten man?
You put a rifle in his hand
You sent him far away
You shouted, “Hip hooray!
–But look at him today.”


Do read this review as well. Within an excellent overview of the movie and an in-depth look at this song is this succinct point:

“We all struggle, but in your own struggle, remember the ‘forgotten men’. That hobo on the street could be a war hero. Do not abandon him. Do not forget him.”

It’s true: Our perceptions are not always reality.

Which made me think…

A couple years ago, I had the privilege of working on this video project that shows exactly what happens when you change your perceptions to reality. I’d never been part of any video project and the entire process was really cool.

But the point is, there’s a part in there that speaks strongly—without saying a word out loud—to the video just gone before. So if you feel like clicking on another video, try this one:

Cool Stuff: The Book of Knowledge

I am the first to admit I am sometimes awash in nostalgia. eBay has helped me get much closer to things I used to have.

But when funds (and space) run out, those long-term memories remain.

It’s easier when they’re still in front of you, of course.

The Book of Knowledge

Since before I was born, I’ve had a set of encyclopedias that are more than encyclopedias: The Book of Knowledge.

I can say this because this particular set is from 1939 and they were in the house before I got there. Yet they are mine all the same.


The Book of Knowledge, 1939. This is Vol 9, by the way.

The Book of Knowledge is an encyclopedia set for children. In fact, it says so right on the flyleaf: “The Children’s Encyclopedia.” But you shouldn’t let that stop you.

Inside each volume are Departments, among them the Earth, Stories and Legends, Literature, The Fine Arts, Men and Women, and Poetry and Rhymes, an example of which appears below. And these are but a few of the goodies you’ll find.


“The Goblin Market” by Christina Rossetti.

As you turn the pages, you are taken from Book to Book within the covers, fetching up with awe-inspiring vistas…


…to a section entitled “Things to Make and Things to Do”…


…to famous books and enchanting illustrations reproduced for your ease and pleasure.


The Knave of Hearts.


There’s even a “Book of Wonder” that answers children’s questions as best as the editors can. We’re still looking for answers to some of these.


Imagine growing up with all that as a kid.

I can close my eyes and picture their rendition of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon. I can remember when my mom needed to learn touch-typing, and I had just come across an illustrated guide on how to do exactly that.

I also remember exclaiming to my dad that in the index, they referred to World War I as simply The World War. Just early enough to still believe it was the war to end all wars.

The feeling I have with these books is one of unlocking a treasure trove, though no currency could replace their value.

And I was quite spoiled for “regular” encyclopedias. Where was all the fun stuff? The musings? The crafts? Mmph!

I can’t be the only one with something like this saved through the years.

What are you hanging onto that makes you happy?