I don't know what I expected exactly, when I saw the NYPD marching band coming up the street in the Celebrate Israel parade today - that they would play Hatikva*? But I was surprised that they launched into "Louie Louie." I guess because the song has a reputation for being subversive:
In February 1964, an outraged parent wrote to Robert Kennedy, then the Attorney General of the United States, alleging that the lyrics of "Louie Louie" were obscene. The Federal Bureau of Investigation investigated the complaint. In June 1965, the FBI laboratory obtained a copy of the Kingsmen recording and, after four months of investigation, concluded that the recording could not be interpreted, that it was "unintelligible at any speed," and therefore the Bureau could not find that the recording was obscene. In September 1965, an FBI agent interviewed one member of the Kingsmen, who denied that there was any obscenity in the song.
The lyrics controversy resurfaced briefly in 2005 when the superintendent of the school system in Benton Harbor, Michigan, refused to let the marching band at one of the schools play the song in a parade. She later relented.
A history of the song and its notoriety was written by Dave Marsh.
My daughter and I happened to be here at this moment because we were waiting to cross over to Central Park to go running there. The cops had Fifth Avenue blocked off to let the parade go by, and then would occasionally allow pedestrians to get across.
Unfortunately soon after the police marching band went by, Mayor De Blasio, surrounded by a group of people, walked by and I was looking down at my iPhone and by the time I heard my daughter say "mayor!" I had missed video-recording him.
Central Park seems smaller when you're running - we made it from Central Park South up to the reservoir (with a pit stop to buy water) in less than 30 minutes. Naomi and I are in training for the Brooklyn Pride LGBT 5K. I'm hoping to beat my bursitis-hindered time from last year.
*Israel's national anthem