Friday, May 29, 2009


First real weekend of summer, sort of!

Rock out!

Early bird

I thought for a minute all day (?) that I would be able to draw up a post re: "half-way through the year! Music Roundup!" to close off today, then I realized it was only the end of May.

You KNOW she doesn't use the phone after dark!

Hey! Speaking of icons of criminality in American popular culture, the Livia Soprano of my life is making a complete recovery (didn't look too super on Wednesday) and being moved back from the hospital to the nursing rehab thing at the retirement community!
Antibiotics straightened that dementia right out.
I can go back to watching my back!

Bankrupt, sweetie

Lacroix bankrupt!


Take THAT, doctor!

I went on Wednesday and had my first physical since 1987 (!).

All went well - I managed to both have blood drawn and pee without fainting.

I go back in a month for my results from bloodwork. Probably will reveal my blood is a thick paste of hot sauce, Chipotle residue and coffee grounds, with about 3% actual sanguinary content.

Dr. was very nice as she told me that, while my weight of 1__ wasn't terrible, more ideally I should weigh 1__. A qty of about 12 lbs. Easy! However, my next move is to lose SIXTY pounds in a month, just to show her HOW F_CKING SERIOUS I AM!

I'll show them ALL!

Where were YOU?


Trying to do all the various and sundry small and large tasks for my doddering parents in the manner that Michael Corleone would have, and so must constantly check with my adopted brother Tom "DC" Hagen.

Sonny and Fredo you can work out for yourselves.

Perfect Circle

Yesterday was swampy and grey and the trees were all saggy in a very Mitch Easter-y 1984 sort of way (today is crisp and clear, thank gawd), so I listened to Murmur in its entirety for the first time in maybe 15 years. I thought for a second "Wait! 'Perfect Circle' is the greatest song of all time!"

It passed.

Why I am not a television producer

NBC has a new show called The Listener, yet another series where a dude solves crimes/helps his fellow peeps with some paranormal ability, here the power to read the thoughts of his fellow man.

See, if I was behind this, he would also be able to hear/see/sense/whatever how people are spelling their thoughts, or how they think the words they are thinking are spelled. Then he would quickly jump off a bridge because he just couldn't take it (who could?) and the whole series, from origin to bridge-leap, would last about 21 minutes.

The suits would frown on all the production expense.

Gas prices start sucking at around 2.40, apparently

Our goofy contractor who had GAS PRICES SUCK in huge letters on his rear car window? Then took the GAS off so it just said PRICES SUCK? Well, fuel costs have risen again to the point that the window does indeed read GAS PRICES SUCK again.

So you can have a feel for how the common man perceives the current economic climate, doncha know.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

If you happen to give a damn

Sorry for dearth of posts. I promise twelve tomorrow (threaten?). If I don't have 80 or more in a 31-day month, I willl lose my Guggenheim grant.

Been out taking care of some family health crap, and slowly losing my mind. But there is light at the end of the tunnel. Ish.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Grizzly Bear verdict

On one listen: I guess the maxim is true that every generation does need an Alan Parsons Project only without any real songs.

"Two Weeks" is okay, though.

Is YOUR wife leaving?

Have you come home to utter silence, and is the bed bigger with no one there?

Aha! Your wife/gf must have gotten wind that Jarvis Cocker is divorced as of last month and, additionally, is doing yoga in Paris or some such.

MAYBE she'll let you keep one cat and the copy of Nine Stories that got wet.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Yeah, well - tough!

Sobbing Kindergarteners Snubbed for Steelers?
Kids locked out of White House; officials say they were too late (MSNBC)

Yes, well - next time use your heads, for Christ's sake. Buy a watch for the whole class or something. Can't say I approve of the football angle of the story, but otherwise...
Again I must remind all mankind: Tardiness KILLS!

Happy Memorial Day Weekend!


I did get the thick Worchestershire sauce and it was amazing. I was indeed all, hey, this tastes just like worchestershire sauce, only thick!

But I also got some commercial chimichurri from Argentina that is insane. So now I can only hope to somehow grill a steak and slather this crap all over it.

Something that needs to be addressed

I hear people referring to shirts that button all the way down the front as button-downs.


A button-down refers to the collar. The collar buttons down. Brooks calls this a polo shirt, as the collar points were allegedly flapping all around until some Brooks weisenheimer came up with have the collar button-down. In fact, they have a patent on such shirts to the point that Ralph Lauren button-downs cannot have the normal ubiquitous Polo by Ralph Lauren logo:

But rather just say Ralph Lauren (with the pony between first and last names) as here:

Point is, don't call a shirt that doesn't have a button-down collar a button-down.
Things are shitty enough.

Ham the chimp - BADASS!

Ham the space chimp lived to be 26 AND was in a movie with Evel Knievel!

Prior to his flight he was called Chimp # 63. They didn't name the chimp candidates before for fear that personalization would look bad if they blowed up. As it was, on splashdown he only bruised his nose!

Also his backup Minnie (the only female space chimp) lived to be 41! After her NASA years, she ran a small gift shop in Taos.

And can it be true?

AJ Langer is 35 today???

As if you didn't know

Morrissey is 50 today.

Not much to say other than let's hope in his next fifty years he gets back to using proper nouns in his lyrics.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

An actual moment where I "LOL"ed, as the kids say

Just took my dad to the doctor and didn't want to take Lolita (yes, I am in the throes of a Nabokov kick again) into the waiting room, on the off-chance it could prove offputting if one of the other 11 citizens in this corner of the state with a library card happened to be there* I took a book from my trunk that has been just sitting there: My Ten Years in a Quandary by Robert Benchley.

What made me laugh was the list of his other books, which included a tome I must order: 20,000 League Under the Sea, or David Copperfield.


* "So that's how he gets his kicks, reading Lolita at the urologist's office. Tut tut!"


My new nephew! 8 months old.


Blur are considering playing gigs in the US and throughout Europe, their promoter Steve Homer has revealed. - NME

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

At least I know where there's a Chipotle, part II

When I typed the post title, and then put in the pic, it seemed so right and clean I just left it that way (below). Some of you may prefer that zen one. What post is actually about is this:

It has become one of the staples of modern, hi-tech life: using satellite
navigation tools built into your car or mobile phone to find your way from A to
B. But experts have warned that the system may be close to breakdown.
government officials are concerned that the quality of the Global Positioning
System (GPS) could begin
to deteriorate as early as next year, resulting in regular blackouts and
failures – or even dishing out inaccurate directions to millions of people
worldwide. - Guardian

This blows, because we just used the Garmin (sp?) to get to Wichita at Easter and it was very helpful getting to Jungle Jim's in Hamilton this last Saturday. At least I got to participate in the GPS phenomenon twice or so before The End came.

At least I know where there's a Chipotle

Mother Earth needs a rest, part XXVIII

See you at Max's!

Do you have a time machine and a yen to visit the grimy, VU-wraparound shades world on New York City in 1966?

If so, I recommend this book, which I rescued from the Free Book Guy's Truck (he being a hippie [probably wants to give out burritos] who goes around doling out free books from his pickup truck, all in the name of lit'racy). I should send this book to the kids at Gawker so they can have a summer theme party of some sort...

There's a chapter entitled "The New York Hooker." One on "Staring, Peeping and Spying." At Burg-a-cue (540 Third, in 1966) "everything present, anything can happen, packed Sunday morning with all sexes from E 3os and 40s looking for a meaningful day of rest." [?] Brooklyn Heights is described as "America's first gay suburb." The phone is the best way to invite someone to an orgy. Whether you need a lawyer au fait with sodomy laws or you wish to consume psychedelics and need to get to Cafe Nicholson to enjoy their "fine jungle entrance" before comedown, if you're going to be in 1966 New York, this is the book to get!

Garden status: in

Yes, our plants are in at the local community garden. Have thus far safely avoided being handed a burrito by some filthy hippie on site as well.
Tomatoes in many varieties, a panoply of peppers, herbs and some parsley. We may undertake another bed as well.
It's good, cos I can walk to it and thus burn off some of my 7100 calories I intake every day.
Expect updates and me ranting and raving about homemade green goddess dressing.

Friskies rapture!

While on such matters apocalyptic, I have to relay an eerie experience I had yesterday:

Came home to find a package of Party Mix (as left, only Beachside Crunch flavor) in the middle of the living room floor, riven from stem to stern with all snacks therein vamoosed. Not even a crumb, or a stray star-shaped morsel tucked in the corner of the bag. That shit went straight to cat-snack heaven.

Bad pigs!

Blog serendipity

When I was a freshman in college (he said, newly safely coddled in his forties [!?!?!]) , my townie roommate worked at the old-school movie theatre uptown, thus making it possible to sit through Fatal Attraction 10 times for free, and The Running Man more than that, all the while NOT studying a whit and drinking copious amounts of Mickey's Bigmouth. Why, yes, I am still a sophomore in college...why do you ask?

ANYway. One preview that came up and we all saw any number of times was The Seventh Sign. I leave the afore-typed crappy syntax as is, to further assure you that I have no college degree. This was the Demi Moore is Going to Have the Devil's Baby Movie. Added gravitas courtesy of title being close to Bergman's The Seventh Seal.

So the actual preview has the even-then standard doomladen voiceover: "The signs are coming..." which cuts to hot rain falling on the streets of a big city and people running to get away from it, etc, then to some Haitian-ish kids on a beach, where one of them notices dead fish washing ashore. Kid shyly approaches dead fish.

Now we had seen this preview probably twenty times, so your humble narrator thought, from the lobby one near-dusk, to shout out (just prior to the urchin touching said sturgeon, which is hot to the touch, as the seas are all a-boil with Lucifer's Wrath, doncha know) "DON'T TOUCH THE FISH!" Onscreen, the ragamuffin touches fish anyway, cries out "Aiiieee!" as he had all the previous times, but by this time the theatre itself was A-BOIL WITH MIRTH!

All of this is a long, long way of saying that yesterday I wanted to post this picture of the "talking fox" from that Lars Von Trier Antichrist movie, but didn't have time:

and it's a good thing I waited, because this is blog post #666, according to the doodad on this here gizmo that counts that sorta stuff!

Forty (?!?!?)

So , yeah, I'm forty today.

I always hate any time celebrities or whomever say "I'm just a big kid!" SO played.

I mean, I'm stupid and more poor than I should be, yet I consider myself finally grown up. So yeah, I feel forty, but not in a bad way at all. I can be forty and still have an opinion about, say, Fleet Foxes (and opinion is [drum roll]: that they're hippie/Americana bullshit). Or Dan Deacon.

All in all, quite happy, and grateful for friends and all that malarkey.

Um, yay.

But is he ALIVE?

Drudge has this in RED:


But he neglects to say whether said simian is alive...has it been crouching in the shadows for that long a time, just waiting to pop out and go "Here I am!"?

Oh, wait: "fossilized," it says below.

Never mind!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

D_____ rocks!

I do so hope these guys were in the same scrap:

Have a lovely weekend

Taking tomorrow off to do some crap for my broken parents! Will update if, say, Updike comes back from the dead. I posted a lot today because if I don't put up 80+ posts in a 31 day month, I will likely lose my Guggenheim. Ta!

So THAT's who it is/seems like!

I was sort of indifferent to this record, but now that it's never going to stop raining (ever), hey!, it's a Rainy Spring Day Record to be reckoned with!

My initial and subsiding misgiving was with the vocal style of the main girl, in that she's sort of sharp and brassy in a way that I couldn't pin down; who did she remind me of?

Then after many repeated listenings, it dawned on me:

Also, thoroughly unrelated, but for the feyness, here's the most Marr-tastic track since, I dunno, "Getting Away With It," though the video isn't all that spectacular*:

* they should have gone with my idea of showing faces (filmed in such tight close-up as to be pretty much abstractions) of adult film performers at the moment of, um, Release, for that added Warhol pop-art movie Bl-wjobness. And rain, lots and lots of rain...

Maybe next single they'll listen to me!

This will end well

You know about mad rights? It's a movement for people with medicated mental illnesses (schizophrenia, eg) to go off their meds and embrace their mental illnesses as part of themselves. I may be oversimplifying, but, yes, by all means, everyone go off lifesaving meds so as to add color and flavor to the oncoming apocalypse.

Use sparingly

Also reading The Night of the Gun, which is sort of like A Million Little Pieces, but with actual reporting. Guy writes for the NYT, so went back and interviewed people he harmed back in the (crack) day and the's not bad. HOWEVER - he used the word acuity three times in the first twenty pages. Acuity is not like the - it needs to used sparingly. As in once in 300 pages.

This is like when I read John Henry Days by Colson Whitehead wherein, instead of mouth, he used the word maw four times. "...sticking a cigarette in the corner of his maw [paraphrase]." See, now, I should read his Whitehead's new book Sag Harbor about preppy black kids in the 80s but have this whole "maw" thing hanging over my head. Suppose he used maw again. Would I chuckle benignly, or would I, in the face of use of said obscure Whitehead favorite and in a tut-tutting sense of 'Well, the 80's weren't like that at all - no one really liked [Echo and the Bunnymen LP] Porcupine that much...' just give up on the book and stop cold? Best not to find out, at least until a copy shows up for a buck at Half-Price (them again!).

Maybe all writers have favored pet words they feel the need to trot out all the time. Some observant followers could even contend that this very outlet you read now relies overly much on too many unnecessary self-consciously Salingerian parentheses and "ironic" italicizations.

But that sort of acuity can only lead to a sock to the maw.


I was selling some tickets to an event to someone on Saturday and she mentioned Ticketman's, which used to be a shop of some sort here in D_____. I think it was a sort of combo ticket sales/head shop sort of place. And I know I was there, some time back in the eighties, so I assume maybe they sold beer to underage kids?

Either way, no trace of said place on the interweb. And the first picture that an image search yielded is the oddness at left.

Does anyone know what I'm talking about? Could I have bought some Jolt cola there?



Yeah, man, Lolita, right? Heavy/sick!

Much prefer Pnin - sweetly forlorn Russian professor bumbles around Waindell College. Or, as he says (and the accent/vernacular is flawlessly done, of course), "Vandal College."

Rereading this last night, and he receives a visit from his ex-wife Liza Wind (amazing names!) who wants him to send spending money to/keep an eye on her son, who is going to school nearby. After her departure, Pnin sobs in the kitchen of the house where he's a boarder and sweet landlady Jean tries to cheer him up with cartoons from a New Yorker-type magazine (it's 1953)...the cartoon described has a man and a cat on a desert island, seeing a mermaid passing and the man's thought balloon is of a whole woman while the cats imagines a whole fish. Pnin is unmoved, says he doesn't get American humor and keeps sobbing...


(an amendation, from the "Fuck yes!" dept:

"When the wind is in a cup, the bears will..." ECK cetera

In my travels, and in my boring summer youthful afternoons reading Allen Eckert novels, I never hear thing one about what the Native Americans thought of tornadoes.

Is it just me?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

"Je Suis le Fromage" dans la voiture

This book freaked me out when I was, what, 11 or so when I read it. Robert Cormier was nuts.

If you haven't read it, go to Half Price Books one day this summer, buy it, then go over to your parents' house, get in the back seat of their car and read this cover to cover.

Also works with The Mist by Stephen King, All My Sons by Arthur Miller and that 1982 Rolling Stone with "Elvis Costello Repents!" cover story (and Haircut 100!).

When improvisation wins out

Went to make my homemade (well, work-made) salad dressing (red wine vinegar, olive oil, garlic [smashed], salt, oregano, cayenne and, for the nonce, some seven dollar dijon I got for a buck as it was a discontinued item [another win!]) for m'lunch and was gutted to see I was out of vinegar and had forgotten I was, what with everything going on (?).

Looked around for some vinegar to no avail, so was forced to use TABASCO for my vinegar-y liquid.


Maybe he should hang with the Depeche [sic]

In a photo provided by Indianapolis police, musician Henry Lee Summer, whose
real name is Henry Lee Swartz, is shown in a photo after his arrest Tuesday, May
5, 2009, in Indianapolis. Summer, who had two top-20 hits in the late 1980s, has
been arrested on methamphetamine possession and other charges. (AP
Photo/Indianapolis police)

I don't think I've ever heard this guy's songs, but living in D_____, he used to play a lot around here, even through the mid-90s. At shitholes.

And, a not-really-related reminder, that I've said before, but which bears repeating: if you get a neck tattoo, you WILL go to jail.

French for Squaresville


Soft-shelled crabs are something I should like no matter what, as they represent all the good things in life: the ocean, Old Bay seasoning...all that down-east shit which should come naturally to me, but for the fact that I am Ohio trash (great-grandmother a prostitute, etc).

So my experiences with them have been met with a sense of obligation, if not innate enthusiasm. I remember having some Asian-y ones once that were good, but, for the most part (and this may be a fault of preparation) they always seem a bit like some sea-flavored crisped phyllo dough.

Until Saturday, when the mighty Rob prepared some in a wee bit of flour with some basil and parsley on them and everything I'd ever known up until then (my name, names of colors, types of clouds) was rendered moot. These pups were actually a bit meaty and all of the sudden I knew that the world had to survive.



I feel about listening to the Decemberists rather like I do about doing laundry: kinda dread doing it, then am glad I'm doing it in the midst of it, like I'm doing something good for myself...then, when I'm done, I don't feel the need to do it again for three weeks or more.

I have almost all of their stuff in one form or another...maybe I need to pare down, put all the "best" in one folder and move on. But then, inevitably, some song I hadn't selected for the collegtion will turn up on a "very special One Tree Hill" [strikethrough: Dateline] and I'll have to go "get" that track and add it to some folder somewhere and I don't have the time, with all this laundry piling up.

OK [deep breath] - that said, that "The Rake's Song" is absolutely the sickest/creepiest thing since, I dunno, Tori Amos doing "Bonnie and Clyde '97," maybe.

Plus I owe Colin Meloy big-time for getting that stupid "Road Rage" song all up out my giant, misshapen noggin:

Monday, May 11, 2009

The Spy Who Loved Me

I know I said (last year?) that Thunderball was the worst piece of shit in the history of mankind (or words to that effect), but last night I saw the second half of The Spy Who Loved Me, and, lo! a competition was birthed.

"Let's have two subs shoot nukes at each other, but let's have no aftermath to it!"

Whatever. I don't really even hate Roger Moore, because I like Live and Let Die.

Also, if asked, I would be most likely to describe my lifestyle as "post-Ffolkes." Because most of the stuff that has happened to me has been, indeed, post-Ffolkes.

Also, last good thing Radiohead did: