The Explanation
(for those who require one)

And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather

Treading the Boards #8


Nanette Fabray and Robert Ryan (100th birthday today) in Mr. President, 1962

12 comments :

Timmy said...

Is Robert Ryan still alive? Is that why TCM has been playing his flicks for the last couple days.... My gosh! Happy Birfday, Mr. Ryan!

Tom Sutpen said...

No, he passed away in 1973.

Michael said...

In case anybody missed it, the Chicago Reader last week published a letter written by Robert Ryan to his children, describing his upbringing in early 20th century Chicago.

http://www.chicagoreader.com/chicago/actor-robert-ryans-letter-to-his-children/Content?oid=1223014

justjack said...

I think of Robert Ryan in "Crossfire," "The Racket," "The Professionals," or "The Wild Bunch." But this? Bob, in a soup and fish, twirling a barefooted Nan??? I, it, I just....

Christopher said...

Act of Violence is the first movie I recall being impressed by R.Ryan.Nanette Fabray was such a fixture on TV in the late 60s and 70s..But I wasn't really aware of her films till seeing The Band Wagon..

MichaelRyerson said...

Robert Ryan a unique mix of qualities. A long time favorite, here wearing a tux, sans jacket, dancing with Nanette and obviously pleased with his situation. Ya never know where Marines might turn up. Wish he was still around to enjoy his B'day.

swac said...

Weird...I watched Anthony Mann's Men In War yesterday featuring Ryan (plus Also Ray and Vic Morrow) and had no idea it was such a momentous occasion.

Maybe tonight I'll have a Billy Budd chaser.

Gunter Weltschmerz said...

Robert Ryan, he played a hell of a Larry Slade in Frankenheimer's "Iceman"

Timmy said...

OK, so he IS dead, then...

Kreisler said...

Next you'll have a photo of Warren Oates in panto

Tempest said...

Ryan went to Dartmouth and was on the boxing team there. He was smart and tough.

Mook said...

I love this blog but for some reason missed seeing this post about my dad's 100th birthday until 5 months after the fact! Very nice - thanks for doing it ... unusual to see a photo from "Mr. President" of all things! (but great to see a pic of him smiling for a change, instead of snarling) ... I'm touched by the comments, wish I'd seen this sooner!
PS - Yes, Timmy, he IS dead.