“Different kind of day” haiku

Born Dec. 13: Ross Macdonald (1915), Dick Van Dyke (1925), Lester Bangs (1948), Tom Verlaine (1949), Taylor Swift (1989)
Also Dec. 13: Al Gore concedes (2000); Saddam Hussein captured (2003)

Feeling weird today?
This 13 is an odd one
Cosmic hits, misses

Al Gore conceded
Half-million vote edge no help
Florida, High Court

Al Gore conceded
Leaving us in the Bushes
We know how that went

Inconvenient truths:
Saddam caught 3 years later
— At terrible cost

Saddam’s opposite
Born this date, in Missouri
Nice guy Dick Van Dyke

In “Bye Bye Birdie”
He found Broadway success, then
His great TV role

“The Dick Van Dyke Show”
This empire’s only misstep?
Rob’s ottoman trip

Great ensemble cast:
Rob, Laura, Buddy, Sally,
Little Richie, Mel

Dick’s chimney sweep, Bert,
Worked wondrous sidewalk magic
For Mary Poppins

Forget it! That word won’t fit
Any haiku line

Dick Van Dyke lives on
Now, and when he’s gone

Live? Or Taylor Swift?
I don’t care, really, because
She writes fine young songs

Singing’s OK, too
She does what she can, KAN-ye
So cut her some slack

Probably not what
Lester Bangs would do for her
Were he still around

Bracing honesty
Marked Lester’s reviews, got him
Fired at least one time

But you always knew
Just where he stood — he’d never
Suck up to stardom

So sad he OD’d
Darvon, Nyquil, Valium
What a weird lights-out

Saved my faves for last:
Masters of noir and guitar,
Mystery and music

Ross Macdonald wrote
Great American novels
Disguised as mysteries

Macdonald’s stories
Plumbed family dissolution,

Main man Lew Archer
Always got to painful truth
Cracked the case, his heart

LA’s facade, too,
Stripped away, reality
Beneath the glitter

Ross Macdonald tales
Equal Chandler, Hammett
As good as it gets

As good as it gets
Tom Verlaine on the guitar
Mystery, too, no star

Band Television
Rocked the CBGB scene
In the punk heyday

“Marquee Moon,” “Blow-Up”
“See No Evil,” “Friction,” “Days”
Fluid, powerful

His solo career
Even more nuanced, speed freaks
Won’t find much to like

But exploration
Of effects, textures and tones
Gets me — and it rocks

Unusual voice,
Words playful, elliptical
Complete the package

Happy birthday, Tom
You fit in nicely on this
Different kind of day