Friday, April 30, 2010

Outta here early,

so it's the weekend for me. Ta.

A must

If one is in Pet Shop Boys, I suppose it's inevitable that, when playing one's sole Italian tour date, one would play here:


Lost pic from Labor Day weekend '93

A few years back, my friend Tim and I were standing around yapping when a girl came in the room and Tim says "I used to go out with her sister."

"SO DID I!," I exploded, "Goddammit! I knew you looked familiar!"

Indeed, we had both dated separate sisters of the aforementioned arriving young woman. Sunuvabitch! It had always nagged at me that I felt like I knew Tim from somewhere; turns out we had gone for a Chinese dinner the Sunday of Labor Day weekend, 1993!

And, now, a photo of our initial meeting way back then has surfaced!

Careful, brah - that's how that asshole from Rage Against the Machine's arm started

"Time" wins!

Was thinking anew yesterday that "Time" by David Bowie is the greatest song of all time...we should be on by now...yes, for sure. But was this worthy of posting? Doesn't everyone already know this?

So, not five minutes later, as I trudged zombie-like through the supermarket, I see one of those kids-trying-to-be-"punk"-in-one-of-the-shittier-outyling-suburbs, this one a distaff built-for-endurance (dyed) redhead, wearing an Aladdin Sane shirt! Providential as fuck! I was so shocked at the converging circumstances that I couldn't help but blurt "Like your shirt!" in my best Matt Dillon in Drugstore Cowboy. Her diamond chip nose stud sparkled as she thanked me.

Danny Goffey is the coolest

I was as surprised as anyone that the news that Supergrass would call it quits at the end of the summer (wistful!) has superseded coverage of immigration, oil slicks and how even Glenn Beck and Keith Olberman bridged their differences to host a special "How We're Coping" pan-network share-a-thon. Maybe the fact that I have been calling In It For the Money the best record of the 90's has paid off?

Anyway, we all know drummers are mouth-breathing cretins. EXCEPT the wild and wonderful Danny, of course. Plus he's that trollop Daisy Lowe's step-dad! Epic!

Well played, Andy Spade

Speaking of pretension, your humbler chronicler loves dada-esque gestures. Had you noticed? So, and as I type I realize I will be hitting new heights of twee dilettantism (yet type I must!), I was reading a book about Richard Prince and featured therein was an interview with Andy "Mr Kate" Spade, who is apparently a Richard Prince champion. ANYway, in the course of this, the subject turns to counterfeit Kate/Jack Spade stuff and the idea is posited of going down to Chinatown and buying a bunch of Kate Spade knockoffs and selling them in actual Kate Spade stores on a special table marked "AUTHENTICATED Fake Kate Spade."

Head explodes!

Flow my tears, the pretension cop said

The NYT says that one J. Lethem is continuing to ransack the works of Philip K Dick to republish and republish and republish. Now it's the crazy (reportedly) Exegesis stuff, thousands of pages of speed-freaky religious ramblings. Anyone who's read Valis will tell you this should be exquisitely painful and obtuse to read. Wait! Let Jon tell you:

"It's absolutely stultifying, it's brilliant, it's repetitive, it's
contradictory. It just might contain the secret of the universe."


Tuesday, April 27, 2010


Every damn time I see this Matisse painting called "The Italian Woman" (saw it for the first time ever in an issue of Time at the doctor's office yesterday), I think for a second that she is wearing a midriff bearing shirt!



I like this new LTZ cover, to tie in with Imperial Bedrooms, though the kid's hair a bit too Pattinson and not Spandau Ballet enough...still, I have to laugh at the kids today who will read this at 15 (surely there will be some? surely? begging now...), and who will say "Wow! Mom's era WAS cool!" before going to dye their hair "anthracite."

And this Chip Kidd-ariffic (prolly) Updike tome had me all ready to order until a.)I saw it was sixty-four pages long even with newly-written-afore-demise intro and afterward materials, b.) I remembered I have this piece in several volumes already, so can pride myself on my abstemiousness, then go buy some fancy $11 jar of hot sauce from Spain or something, and c.) I'm sure I will find a copy at 10-dollar-a-bag Sunday at the PP Book Fair in 2017. It can wait!

Still, it's a nice answer to the fifteen month old question "What will be the first JU re-package up out the box?"

Something else that must be stopped

Even though one of my Top 5 LP's ever (Black Sea, natch) starts with this, it's time that the ever-so-hackneyed "hey, clever!" effect of starting an album with the sound of a needle hitting a record and crackling is taken out and shot.

I would guess that even blog posts about this topic are cluttering up the inter-tubes to the point where Fairfax, VA is constantly fighting off a brown-out, but it bears repeating.

Nuh UH!

CNN Headline of the year, thus far!:

Bret Michaels' hemorrhage painful

You gotta be shittin' me!

Runners up must have been:

Michaels: Hemorrhage was like "swallowing poison."

Michaels "felt an unskinny pop" in head

Look what the cat scan dragged in

Nothin' but a brain bleed for Poison's Michaels

Rikki Rockit Found Dead

Plus, CNN wizards: Elements of Style states that one should add an extra "apostrophe s" to even words that already end in "s." I know you are trying not to fry calcified minds of the trash-polloi, but seriously!

Naptime down at the pig farm

90's me, I could just HUG you!

Dear me of the 90's,

Hey, things are fine (that fall '93 ski sweater is still in great shape!), just a quick note to say that at whatever point you decided that Jon Spencer Blues Explosion utterly sucked, well, you were entirely right! He's got a new best-of out, now, in 2010 (I don't know why, either!), and I dutifully listened to it to see if maybe, just maybe, you had been wrong about this group...stupid of me, I know. Well, needless to say, you were correct (as ever)! It's awful! Even the guitar tones are so meh (ask me later about this word) and raunchless. Mea culpa for ever doubting you!

All this guy did was invent Johnny Knoxville and generally be a Shitty Dexter Romweber! OH! That reminds me - go over to Renaissance (it's closed now! I know!) and nose around for a copy of the Athens GA Inside/Out soundtrack and store it someplace. It's hard to come by, even in the future formats that I couldn't explain to your nineties Party of Five mind. Then when I get home tonight I will have it or go dig it up wherever you bury it!

PM me.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Try not to ride with death this weekend

Secret Histories abounding

I came across an MP3 by a band called The Secret History which in time I checked out. I liked it! Songcraft and all that old-fashioned foolery! A singer who sounded like Kirsty MacColl! Tasty little late-80's guitar licks, of a type scarcely heard in these terrible times!

Well, today, I see on Brooklyn Vegan (yep) that they are 1.) old (hence the old-skool pre-Pitchfork values system in place -- no "woozy VHS-hiss moogs" here!), 2.) have a video where they use a friend who looks like the guy from Elbow walking around NYC in a mod parka ( ), and the lead singer girl (pardon the epithet) is MICK RONSON'S DAUGHTER [second left in pic]. Yes, read that again, Mike!

So, veddy interesting. Maybe they will open for Muse and I can miss them both!

Then that got me thinking about Donna Tartt and wondered how she was wasting her time these days: spray-painting mounted butterflies black, making tiny velvet costumes for pet hens, just generally being elven...her wiki bio had this:

In September 2008, it was announced that Tartt would publish her third novel
with Little, Brown and Co. The new novel, as yet untitled, is
a story of loss and obsession about a young man, guilt-stricken and damaged
after the death of his mother, and the growing power that a stolen piece of art
exercises over him, drawing him into an underworld of theft and corruption where
nothing is as it seems. Publication scheduled for 2012.

Zounds! A world where nothing is as it seems, huh? Sounds fresh! And here I thought she would write an uplifting page-turner about a kid from the rough streets with a million-dollar pitching arm!!

Image dump

Could be aMUSEing, but -

I really can't remember the last "real" rock concert I went to, that is: one not in a club. Like a full-on, laser-equipped throwdown...maybe Kiss, ca 1997? Second year of the return of make-up.

Hmm. Now I see that Muse is coming to a venue less than sixty miles from here in something like October or November. I like Muse quite a bit...and I would guess the type of kid who goes to a Muse show would be less put off to see ol' grandad Nick bopping his head than would the kids who go see, I dunno, some even more mall-riffic, like Green Day or something.

But what if the kids who go to such a show are actually cool or even real, look like this and stuff:

I'd get run out on a rail! Best to stay home and read.


"...and there became a time when..."

The White City, my ass

Read The Devil in the White City recently [how 2003 of me, I know, I know], and it was great right up to the point where I stopped caring about it. Was particularly impressed by the descriptions sheer scale of the undertaking of the building of the fair, as opposed to the murder parts, which surprised me. Why would this be? I mean, building some crap is not as inherently sexy/gory as some maniac building a special house where he can do away with and skin his victims and such...

Then I realized why it fascinated: the building of the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, with all its attendant snafus and massive amounts of manhours and labor, was, in some small negligible way, a sort of crude, immature forerunner to the construction of our raised garden bed! How well I understood the anguish of these architects and builders, even though their struggles with weather and time and manpower to craft their insignificant bauble on the Lake was nothing compared to what I continue to face every day. Not to mention our Banvard's Folly* of a community garden, where altruism intersects with a labor comparable to the erecting of the Pyramids, albeit with slackjawed passersby saying "Whatcha doin?"

Anyway: progress pic of backyard, with another four inches o' organic matter added! Yummy!

Proud farmer, off some Bizarro-world collective farm:

* look it up

Yes, I still won't shut up about MACHETE!

The Bride and I were the only people ever to watch Grindhouse, apparently, if one is to judge from reactions of mouth-breathing yokels we know to mentions of same. AND we all know that the fake preview for MACHETE! is being made into a real movie with such noteworthy stars as Lohan and Steve Seagal! EPIC!

Well, in doing some "research" the other day, I found out that Danny "Machete" Trejo has been sober for 35 years-plus! Huh? Someone buy me a lead CD of that shit! (If you don't know what that means, just wait! And, er, good luck!)

So that got me all fired up anew, thinking aboiut the preview itself and how great it is/was. "One twenty-five for septic..sewage..." Poetry!

Then I found THIS!

(for comparison:


I mean, one can try to brush Picci...but she will wriggle, hiss and bark like a squirrel before secreting away to throw up on something or harass her sister...

But last weekend I noticed a little twist in her neck-area fluff and thought, "Hmm! That bears watching," in the manner of a dentist with an eye on a dental cary.

Well. Here's what I found last night!:

Dem pig a rasta an' ting!
Promptly clipped out said fluff-knot and sent it off to be made into mittens for some orphans!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Posts that fail

It's not easy being a chronicler of these times.

Sometimes, one gets an idea for a post and then it is disproven (disproved?) by fact and the post must be spiked. Such as this morning, I wanted to bitch that my qwerty keyboard on my phone didn't have a semi-colon, thus rendering my texting useless. But then I looked and it did have one. So, the point of the post was lost...and although I would gather I already bitched about dearth of an italics feature at some point and could grouse about that, the flavor and vim of the original thought was lost, and I was left with cobbling together one of those "catch-all" posts that readers, if they actually existed, would abominate.

Other times a great idea is rendered null and void on closer inspection/further reflection. Eg, I took this pic at the coffee shop on Saturday, as this dude is coming to D_____ to give some sort of Tony Robbins-or-maybe-Jesus-ish "inspirational seminar":

Was way into posting this pic with a simple, tasteful "Hey! I DO need to rent Battlefield Earth!" title line, but on looking at the pic on the screen and not the poster itself in the granulated morning halflight of the coffee shop, some wag had already made the joke in a far subtler sharpie-equipped way...the eyebrows are drawn on, thus making the joke. So another post is subsumed by circumstance.

Matters of public controversy should also be avoided, at least in a Gadfly Corner Non-Issue Weblog (or GCNIW) such as this one. Some people get upset about the influx of immigrants, legal and non-, from our southern neighbors. How can one avoid getting one's readership riled up when expressing an idea that immigration doesn't matter a whit, when it means that commercial meat-grinding concerns are coming up with products like this?:

In the end, it's best to just ramble on about how one needs to go get some heliotropes and tack on some useless factoid like "They were Babe Paley's favorite flower, you know," thus stoking the "is he/isn't he?" debate, generating controversy and perforce PAGEVIEWS!

"Blair Witch" caught!

Ed, we hardly knew ye

You can stop fruitlessly searching imdb for Ed "Tom Townsend" Clements twenty hours a week.

You should have been checking in some mild Canadian church!

Suffer little listeners

Even your rat-faced old granny knows that Hatful of Hollow is the real thing so far as early Smiths LP's go. I seriously had not listened to the whole of the first, self-titled LP in...I dunno, fifteen years? I remember it as not good (mostly because of the cringemaking "Miserable Lie") but I foolishly did not trust the 15 year old me who made that pronouncement and listened to this yesterday. I still (mostly) hated it, but for different reasons. One being that hindsight has loaned M. Marr a sheen of infallibility, whereas, in reality, the guitar tones on this are pretty awful, with lots of 80's sounding "chorus pedal"-y slop all over it. Drums are dead, and I'm not convinced that they are not actually an old Linn drum in places. Irksome!

Still, it made me listen to "Reel Around the Fountain" with different ears and lead to my latest idee du bumper sticker:

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Business idea of the century II

One of the nice things about having a blog is that I can ramble on about pointless crap in text, as opposed to the normal verbal way. Once in a while, such as now, inspiration wields its blackjack and I can then transpose useless thoughts I've had for most of my life from just "thoughts" to a handy readable form.

To wit: my bar Center Quart.

I can't even remember when I started rambling about this...1991? 1993? ANYway, the time is now, lucky reader, for YOU to learn of it!

This is a bar where you can only order quarts of beer in bottles. Not even 40's. Then, when you order, the quart bottle is zipped into a velcro sleeve. The walls, the tables, everything in the place is then upholstered with the opposing velcro material, thus freeing you from having to hold the bottle, allowing one to gesticulate wildly, make out, light cigarettes (illegally, now)...

The genius bit is that, in the fashion of a bar in my olde college towne that had a primitive BW3 in the back, there is a franchise stand at the rear of the place...but one that ONLY sells the little "extra crispies" bits from Long John Silver's fish restaurants. Day and night the staff therein blasts out cubic yards of fried bits that then get all stainy on the velcro walls and stuck in the nap of the bottle sleeves!

Business idea of the century I

I had a J Crew shirt back in 1989 that I loved and it disappeared. But it could have just as easily disintegrated over time.

SO, someone needs to start a place that sells vintage crap from Ralph, Brooks etc, so I don't have to waste my valuable time a) looking forever for the exact thing I want on ebay (I had a friend who has a tie I look for weekly - the tie, not the friend) or b) losing an auction to someone on Honshu or in Auckland or something.



Beagles, kitchen islands, etc

Here are Sadie (L) and Buddy:

Their folks sold us this bitchin' kitchen island/table/thingy:

Marge nook

After five months, Biscuit has found the spot of her dreams! Plus there's very little room for her plump and brutal sister to try to barge in on. Huzzah!