The Claireifyer

Almost everything you think you know is changing

Claire Dobie

Claire Dobie
Martinez, California, USA
April 26
freelance writer, editor, researcher, proofreader
I was a TV news anchor and reporter in three major markets and now focus on writing, editing, research and proofreading. See my crude but functional website at My favorite quote is Mark Twain's "The difference between a word and the exactly right word is the difference between lightning and the lightning bug." With approximately 2,000 books in my garage library, ninety-nine percent are reference books because I am an admitted information junkie. I could not tell you the current hottest novel except "Fifty Shades of Gray" because my friends and daughter read it. Not really interested. Research--not S&M--is my heart. I've interviewed Ronald Reagan, Sen. Ted Kennedy, the Sr. President Bush, Governor Jerry Brown, and entertainers such as Patti LaBelle, Sister Sledge, David Brenner, and Melba Moore. Seizing the day, observing people, smiling at strangers (especially those with grumpy faces), and yielding to the guy in the car who's been trying to get into traffic for the past five minutes are my favorite things to do.


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DECEMBER 27, 2011 1:39PM


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Ever hear of the Johnson O'Connor Human Engineering Labs? Ever hear of Occupy Wall Street? The two have got me thinking.

It may sound a little Hal-like but the objective of the Johnson O'Connor folks, when I attended more than 20-something years ago, seemed reasonable: to guide the subject to the exactly right career path and avocational interests conducive to his personality, temperament and natural skills.

They told me, for example, to stay away from assembly line work. My dexterity skills sucked. They also warned me that math was not a strong suit, as if I didn't know that.

And then there was the music test series. Ah, now we're talking. It was nothing short of exhilarating. I could have stayed for days working this so-called test.

When I left, the test administrator said to me "Words and music are you. You need music.  Make it a part of your life for three or four hours every day. It will save you."

Thank you, Johnson O'Conner but this advice was something I had known since I was four years old. I turned to music for everything! To relax. To rock. To cry. To laugh. Music was my world. It gave me power,  passion, and cause for reflection. I memorized lyrics from songs by Frank Sinatra, Cab Calloway, Ella,  Elvis, the Five Satins, Flamingos and Platters. I loved Bob Marley and Chicago, Janis, Blood Sweat and Tears, the Main Ingredient, Joe Cocker, Roy Orbison and every beat I could get my ears on. Between it all, there was Chopin, Bach, Mozart and Rachmaninoff to soothe the savage beast. There wasn't a genre of music I missed except  heavy metal. (Sorry, just too piercing.)  I won $2,400 and a car on Name That Tune. I disliked the song that won that car but knew it as soon as I heard the first three notes. It was Hot Child in the City--a one hit wonder by Nick Elder. It paid my mortgage for three months.

So I was thinking. In the midst of this country's financial, social and ethical challenges, one of Stevie Wonder's songs seems to replay in my musical head and I think how perfect it would be as the official "Occupy" song.

Break out that vinyl and those old CDs and find Stevie Wonder's You Haven't Done Nothing.  Blast it. Here's to Congress, the Supreme Court, the Tea Party, the Feds, the banks, and Wall Street and anyone else who got us in this mess, including Grover Norquist and the un-relenting GOPers who are bringing us all down...well all but one percent.

And thank you Stevie for these lyrics:

We are amazed, but not amused  by all the things you say that you'll do
Though much concerned but not involved
With decisions that are made by you

But we are sick and tired of hearing your song
Telling how you are gonna change right from wrong
'Cause if you really want to hear our views
You haven't done nothing!

It's not too cool to be ridiculed
But you brought this upon yourself
The world is tired of pacifiers
We want the truth and nothing else

And we are sick and tired of hearing your song
Telling how you are gonna change right from wrong
'Cause if you really want to hear our views
"You haven't done nothing"!

We would not care to wake up to the nightmare
That's becoming real life
But when mislead who knows a person's mind
Can turn as cold as ice un hum

Why do you keep on making us hear your song
Telling us how you are changing right from wrong
'Cause if you really want to hear our views
"You haven't done nothing"!

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