Kennedy, Kennedy, Kennedy

That's actually a listing of presidents following Nixon in a history lesson in 1975's post-apocalyptic teen sex comedy, A Boy and His Dog, based on the Harlan Ellison story (and featuring a talking telepathic dog that could be the reincarnation of Ellison himself). Probably not worth seeking out, though I enjoyed it at the time.

But it could be an account of the last couple of weeks of news.  My teenage son asked me if some spectacular new piece of information had surfaced about the assassination, thus justifying the enormous amount of coverage. I had to say that no, there hadn't been. It was a generation mourning itself.

I don't mean to be flip. It was, after all, a tragic and significant event. I just found the focus to be a bit relentless.

Still, a couple of interesting things did appear.

One was this recording of Erich Leinsdorf making the announcement of the assassination to a stunned Boston Symphony audience, and then launching into an impromptu performance of the funeral march from Beethoven's Eroica Symphony.

 This is my music. I still remember my parents buying me an LP of a Bernstein/NY Phil recording, with this cover:

Three heavyweights

I've owned a number of recordings since then, but I still remember the pleasure with which I listened to that one. In context, that funeral march is extremely moving, though that may seem odd for someone who grew up outside the context of European concert music. I wonder how many people still remember that particular performance at Symphony Hall?

The second is an eerie HD version of the Zapruder film, which Kottke says was made by someone named Antony Davison, though I see no other references to him online.

A friend who lived in the Soviet Union as a child in the 1960s once told me that there was a TV show there about the United States that played the Zapruder film repeatedly as its opening credits. This is probably the most intensively analyzed 26 seconds of film ever shot, and it still has the power to shock.