Friday, December 09, 2005

The Unofficial Start.


Just when I thought Wilco's Yankee Foxtrot Hotel could not be appreciated anymore than I was appreciating it:

On YHF, Wilco use short-wave radio as a metaphor for communication in a relationship.

That girl really likes that record (as evidenced by her 10-page entry). All the information she provides on the album's interpretations and the band (name from radio jargon "will comply") makes me appreciate the album about five times more than I did. And I've had it the thing on repeat on my MP3 player for the past week or so.

And I never researched the title of the album.

YHF is a high-traffic station on the network of short-wave radio stations operated by Mossad, Israel's intelligence agency. These stations have played an essential role in allowing Mossad to communicate with agents by broadcasting one-way transmissions usually identified with a tactical call-sign consisting of three phonetic letters, such as "Charlie India Oscar" or "Echo Zulu India". Although the broadcast voice is always female, it's not an actual person but a speech synthesizer -- automatic machines do the actual announcing, sending out a seemingly endless stream of rota-styled messages.


"[W]e're not the biggest band in the world, but we are part of the fabric of certain people's lives. . . . And there is no doubt in my mind that for some people out there, we are one of the threads they are hanging on to. And I think what we have to do as a band is to make those people aware of how we need them as much as they need us. To me, music is love, and I need it in my life just as much as they need it in theirs". --Tweedy


There is just something so magical, pseudo-depresso, honest, true-to-life about Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. I don't know what it is, and I don't know why about 6 or 7 years ago I probably would have thought it was too boring, but now I'm just immersed in it. It's lyrically simple, simple images, simple chords and basic arrangements, though a lot of bells and whistles and a bit of fuzzy edges. Nothing too over-complicated in the rhythm section, although I usually enjoy drum and bass complications. But the guitar work. Man. And those strings on "Jesus, etc." -- they get me every time. Look at me, I'm writing like Holden Caulfield here (I've been reading that lately). ... Those strings are on the edge of corny, but they just kill me. Get me every time.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

I think that's about the dumbest thing I've ever heard.

We watched Taxi Driver tonight (yeah, the title of this post is a quote from a funny part in the movie). I thought it had great direction and action and acting, but ... I also thought it dragged a bit at times. But, hey, maybe that's just me.


I always think about making New Year's Resolutions, but I always think of how long a year is and get kind of disenchanted with the idea. Even something that sounds relatively painless, like keeping a list (with short descriptions) of each band I see live sounds kind of staggering. Or keeping a journal. I tried that one time daily for a couple of months. The entries got pretty monotonous and same-same, even if something cool happened.

Whenever I think about it too much, I just read Calvin's New Year's Resolutions.

Maybe I want to draw a comic strip. That would be cool. We did one (just one) in fifth grade (when our teacher, Mr. Nieves, was also an artist), and all I did was copy the first Calvin and Hobbes strip, blatantly stealing the joke, characters, and everything.

Even in my award winning short story, "The Underground Kingdom," (ha) in fifth grade, I named the two main characters Calvin and Hobbes. My teacher suggested that I changed the names, and I did, to something obviously more bland (blander?) and boring, since I can't remember what they were in the end. I still kept the girl in the story named "Roxanne," though, since I was hiply (hipsterly?) listening to the Police at that age.

Thursday, December 01, 2005


I checked back in on the weeze web site, found the video for perfect situation (meh -- they cut out the cool part of the beginning guitar solo! gwaaah!) and found a link to the AOL sessions.

I wished they had played like this in Orlando.

I had seen Rivers use the talk box on Letterman, but he didn't in Orlando.

If you want, you can fast forward to 1:40 and 3:10 in Beverly Hills (though the song sounds a lot better than the recording). But still watch the half-step risen "Don't Let Go," ... actually, all the videos are good. Perfect Situation a little less so, but still better than the recording (they added those background vocals, "peerfect situation" at the end for the single -- it's in the video too). Even the "Island in the Sun" acoustic is good.

Still don't care for the palm-muting on "Buddy Holly," but I grant them the right to change that song, since they've probably played it over a thousand times.

Watch the interview clips (under transcript) -- they're hilarious! Everyone just staring at the ground while Rivers talks. Those guys love messing with the media... I don't believe anything in that Rolling Stone article about the band.

Pinkerton = Blue > Green > Album Five Scrapped Demos > Maladroit > Make Believe.

I haven't changed my opinions on Make Believe; I still blame Rick Rubin for the production on that one.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Edward Norton... in Tallahassee?

My roommate just told us he saw Edward Norton and Jared Leto at La Pitaria.

Jared has a band called 30 Seconds to Mars and is playing at Floyd's (ugh). Go figure.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Ok, no.

You can go ahead and scratch that whole "buy Deerhoof" CDs comment -- just go see their live show if you're within 50 miles and it's within $50. (Doesn't really transfer well to record.)

Instead, at this point, you can go ahead and safely buy Ok Go's Oh No without worrying -- it rocks.

Eating Contest.

Mood: Full.
Music: Cake (Comfort Eagle).

I disclosed to a friend via AIM earlier today that school is getting in the way of everything that I want to accomplish now.

I guess it's not that bad... I'm cutting back on class hours next year (semester), concentrating on Latin, and taking some graduate-level courses, which should all be cool and exciting things.


I had an eating contest with one of my apartmates. We decided to do it at 11 p.m. and went to Publix to look around for things to eat. We decided on Totino's pizzas, hot dogs, and ... pudding.

1) I do think that picking multiple things to eat for a contest is a good thing. It's diversity, so the dish doesn't get too sickening.
2) I do not think I want to do eating contests... ever again. I've always wanted to do one, and I'm glad I did it... but, man. Man. I shall retire as reigning champ for my defeat of (very nearly) two whole Totinos' Supremes, five hot dogs (with buns), and three of those little plastic cups of pudding.


I was actually listening to Cake when I started this -- I heard them on a VH1 countdown (all that VH1 is nowadays) in the background and I popped in this disc. Not their best (arguably Motorcade of Generosity is, though Fashion Nugget has the hip factor), but still pretty darn good. Sleigh bells on "World of Two." Now the 3-disc CD player has shifted to what was in the third spot-- At the Drive-In, Relationship of Command.


I finished my painting... it has, well, hard to describe ideas. I'll post a pic later when I d'bo someone's digicam.


Music is a pretty cool force. Universal phenomenon, not "language," my hippy ethnomusicologist professor argued two years ago to us. I guess I'll agree with him. There are just SO many bands. And I've only been exploring one subsection of one major area of recorded music -- independent rock. That exploration has been ongoing for the past two years or so, and it's pretty fulfilling, but, despite the fact that new bands are created daily, I still don't think I've gotten very deep into the roots or midsection, but that I've been exposed to a considerable amount, but not majority, of current stuff.

The things that drive me, supposedly, are the possible discovery of new stuff that will become my favorite stuff. Stuff that is so cool, I will regret missing out on it all these years. And then there's the hipness factor. I guess that's a big part. Buying CDs on other people's recommendations. I still contend that without anyone else in the world liking a band, you're at about an 85% chance of not liking them. Now, I'm not talking everyone else in the world hates the band, just casually dismisses them -- "Nah, I don't really care for them," maybe "Yeah, they're alright." Music is a very social thing, although recordings can have an intimate impact on people.


No new songs really being produced. Some fragments, no really good lyrical ideas. I'm pretty critical of my previous songs all the time, just thinking back on them, and what I was saying at the time, and what they mean, and such. I guess I write about that a lot, but I've noticed my songs come in spurts, usually 4-6 at a time in one month. All these other times it's just combing through dumb riffs, singing weird lines, and trying to make meaning of stuff. Guess that's the way it works.


I hadn't watched Homestar for a looong time, but I checked back in last week, and saw this Strongbad email. I thought it was only moderately funny... until it got near the end, and I just started cracking up. Mostly because I thought of how this seemed to be like a childish online cartoon the whole time, but they have stuff like is in this email... and it's just brilliant. Hopefully you'll know about the part I'm talking about when you see it in the cartoon.


New Strokes album on January 3? (With a Parental Advisory sticker?) I'm THERE!

Monday, November 21, 2005


Online Comics.

Hahah, ... they actually printed three comics in association with my article covering online comics (although only one is shown here...):

Check online for laughs

There was also one of the last PLIF strips, and a teaser toothpaste for dinner on the front page (left column)!

Really brightened up my day... and I think I just aced a test (that helped too).

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Rate my CD Collection!

Alright, so I got this idea to start listing all of the albums I own...

CD Collection

I guess I'll keep updating it, since the bulk of the work has already been done...

Post corrections/comments here...


Check it:

Everything Is Illuminated

It doesn't display it, but I gave the movie an "A+".

I think I'm getting better at this whole writing thing.

Xiao cai feng.

I went to see Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress tonight. I would give it a B-.

Its greatest accomplishment, I think, was getting people to think about banned literature, as well as the limits of Mao's system of rule (obviously). I enjoyed the premise, thought the acting was good, but didn't really care for the plot or think the cinematography or direction was all that outstanding. It had its little charms, though, and I would recommend it to those who are looking for a quaint story of rural China, with some artistic flourishes here and there. (Though I would recommend Bom yeoreum gaeul gyeoul geurigo bom, which I consider to be better in most aspects, first.)


I've begun reading 1776 by David McCullough. It caught my eye when I was working at Target last summer, and seems like it will feed into my Hamilton Biography (Ron Chernow) reading and my general fondness for American History. It is a hardback that I found online for a reasonable price, and at least two people who saw me reading it commented on the fact that I removed the dust cover. ... They made it sound like it wasn't normal to remove the dustcovers from books while you're reading them. Is this a customary habit? I just don't want them to get smudged, ripped, or lost. And some of my older books have ones that are delicate and I don't want them to fall apart.


I've been testing my need for sleep lately. Although I thoroughly enjoy getting massive amounts of sleep, I have been staying up later and later, finding a unique creativity during the magical 3 to 5 a.m. period of hazy sleep-deprived mental states.


My former (cool) editor was forced to leave the newspaper, without even being able to publish a farewell column (after being there for 2 + years, and being A&E editor there for at least one of those years) in some odd circumstances that I do not fully understand. I considered quitting (yet again), romanticizing my departure as being based on morals, but I actually do enjoy writing and editing, I look forward to the prospect of being able to head the section, and the monthly supplementary income is not a bad thing in the least.


It is getting cooler here and I welcome the change. It has been a ridiculously 85 + degrees forever now, and that just didn't make much sense to me. Now I can start wearing my new jacket and sweaters, and even my gloves!

Wednesday, November 16, 2005


Hahaha, the first time I log onto fark in months, and I see a topic about good wallpaper. With zero comments. I see that it was posted one minute prior to my visit. As I search for the website where I got my background, and realized I already had the image stored online, 3 other people posted in the comments. But they weren't pictures.

So, guess who's number one now, baby?

So now I've gotten one link submitted to Fark's mainpage, and the first comment in one thread. Schwea.

(I just had a great interview with Lars from The (International) Noise Conspiracy! -- They're Swedish!)

Deerhoof rules.

Everyone go out and buy Deerhoof CDs. I bought one tonight after their live set (amazing), and I haven't listened to it yet, but I know it's gonna be good. Their drummer had a bass drum, a snare, and a monsterly-chipped high-hat. And that was it. Only those three things. And two sticks. Amazing.


Oh, crap. I just read the AMG weekly newsletter -- the new Wilco live double CD set is out. There goes another $20...

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Old video games.

I started watching some speed runs of Super Mario Bros. 3, done on emulators and exploiting every glitch known to man.

Then, I remembered that Matt had a Nintendo...

Last Sunday I played the following for about 6 hours before beating it (didn't use any warp whistles):

It was an addictive experience. I remembered all these little things about it, and every level. I had forgotten about the Hammer Bros. suit, and a couple of other little things like that.

So then, yesterday, I started in on

I wasn't able to beat it in one night, but when I popped it in today, I got through it in two tries (using all the warps I knew). Then, once I had beaten the final Bowser, I used the special warp ability you get when you beat it to go back and play through every single level. And I remembered every single level. I don't know how I played that as a child (I even remembered where hidden 1-ups and stars were!). But, by now, I think I've become rather skilled in the game, as opposed to in my younger years, when I remembering running into those stupid spinning flames in the castles constantly. Yet, somehow, I remember something about every stage. I must have played it a lot.

Matt also has Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles -- the first one, yeah the original. And I even remember stuff about that too-- I think. I'm not gonna try to beat that one, I just played some of it and it can get frustrating.
And, he has Top Gun, which I don't remember playing and will not attempt.
And, he has Dr. Mario, which pales in comparison to the original Gameboy Tetris.

Yeah, I went there.

That pointy little square controller hurts so much.

--Anyone have questions for The (International) Noise Conspiracy?--

Monday, November 14, 2005


In some annual events, in certain parts of rural Georgia, bands like Echo Valve compete in a fishy battle against local bands after touring Germany and playing on the Warped Tour. Suck Valve gets to play last, of course, as other lesser-known bands who, coincidentally, have music in the artistic left field of the mainstream cRap/heartfelt-metal/"make some noise"-toting lead singers with junk for melodies and blandness for music rock groups that comprise the rest of the battle of the bands line-up get to go first (through a random drawing).

In broad daylight.

With a crowd of 10 less-than-thrilled Georgians.

With no light shows that happened for every other band.

Being judged in such categories as:

Appropriateness: Were their lyrics, gestures, etc. appropriate for the (Bainbridge College) campus?


Wardrobe: Does the band's physical appearance match its music?



Sitting through this event once again reminded me that not everyone has the Club Downunder. That, although there are hundreds of good bands out there, under the radar, there are probably 1.5X that many bad "don't go psycho" bands out there.

"This is a song about somebody that goes psycho..."

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Jewish Rapper + Gypsy Punks ... = ?

Matisyahu speaks out

I do not like reading or linking to Rolling Stone's Web site. But, this guy is not bad -- my roommate has the CD and he does (Matisyahu does, that is) some mad-wicked beatboxing.

Gogol Bordello

I might have mentioned Everything Is Illuminated, but maybe (maybe?) I did not mention that the guy who plays Alex opposite Elijah Wood in the film is Eugene Hutz, lead singer of Gogol Bordello, a punk band... with gypsy influences. Yeah, strangely enough, that same roommate of mine also has these guys' CD, and it does not sound bad. (I started cracking up when I heard "Start Wearing Purple" play during the credits of Everything...

Thursday, November 10, 2005


The 1 Second Film


A collaborative non-profit epic that climaxes in one second of animation. The animation consists of 12 frames- each frame is a giant painting (5ft x 9ft) that was created by hundreds of people in one night. Each painting was then filmed twice (on 70mm) to create the 24 frames in one second of film. The 1 Second Film is being financed by thousands of people around the world, from some of Hollywoods biggest celebrities to great-grandmothers and gas-station attendants (credits are sold for as little as $1 and listed in order of the amount). A feature-length 'making of' documentary will play during the film's estimated 90 minutes of end-credits. After the film's premiere, the 12 giant frames will be on exhibit and auctioned off to raise money for the Global Fund for Women.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Andrew Bird.

Here is some interesting art I found while streaming Andrew Bird's latest album, The Mysterious Production of Eggs.


So I haven't gone for groceries in weeks, I just did all of my laundry, but our dryer still does not work properly, our (and apparently everyone else's [comcast]) internet connection has been on the fritz for the past three days, and I just saw Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Eh.

Nashville for Turkey Day, baby!


Yesterday I had this deeply moving, realistic dream. I woke up after a two-hour nap after classes and was stunned at how vivid this dream was. The mind, you see, is very powerful.


Evolutionary psychology/biology is just plain dumb. Have you heard of this stuff? People come up with theories based on what has happened. "So, evolutionary psychologists would tell us, since life began in the ocean, we didn't need a taste for salt, and that's why it's separate from sweet tastes, even though we still need the properties of things that taste salty."

No one tests anything.
No one predicts anything.
No one adds anything useful to existing knowledge.
Just, theories about stuff that's happened.

Heck, I do that all the time. And I don't need a degree/to spend my life's work doing it.

Monday, October 31, 2005

So pervasive.

This weekend I read three articles with references to the Simpsons in them. Two from Popmatters and one from Pitchfork Media.

Within the past month, one of the FSView A&E writers made a reference to the Simpsons in one of his movie reviews.

It's nearly impossible to imagine to what extent The Simpsons is pervasive within and inseparable from modern culture (example: Family Guy would not have existed without it).

Good thing I've been on the bandwagon for about a decade now, littering my speech with references that are usually wasted, unless a sibling is within earshot (or... web...shot? online?).

But too bad I've given up watching current episodes... Oh well, probably catch them in reruns.

Who shot what in the when now?

... Dr. Cheeks, just makin' my rounds and, uh, I'm a little behind.

Is the poop deck really what I think it is?

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Everything Is Illuminated

Everyone I know should see this movie. Do not let the Rotten Tomatoes (un?)freshness rating fool you--it is cinematic gold.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Mountain Goats.

Broom People

'36 hudson in the garage,
all sorts of junk in the unattached spare room,
dishes in the kitchen sink,
new straw for the old broom,
friends who dont have a clue,
well meaning teachers,
but down in your arms,
in your arms, I am a wild creature.

floor two foot high with newspapers,
white carpet thick with pet hair,
half eaten gallons of ice cream in the freezer,
fresh fuel for the sodium flares,
I write down good reasons to freeze to death
in my spiral ring notebook,
but in the long tresses of your hair
I am a babbling brook.


Palmcorder Yajna

Holt Boulevard
Between Gary and White
Hooked up with some friends at the Travelodge
Set ourselves up for the night

Carpenter ants in the dresser
Flies in the screen
It will be too late by the time we learn
What these cryptic symbols mean

And I dreamt of a house
Haunted by all you tweakers with your hands out
And the headstones climbed up the hills
And the headstones climbed up the hills

Send somebody out for soda
Comb through the carpet for clues
Reflective tape on our sweatpants
Big holes in our shoes
Every couple minutes someone says he can't stand it any more
Laugh lines on our faces
Scale maps of the ocean floor

And I dreamt of a camera
Pointing out from inside the televsion
And the aperture yawning and blinking
And the headstones climbed up the hills

If anybody comes to see me
Tell 'em they just missed me by a minute
If anybody comes in to our room while we're asleep
I hope they incinerate everybody in it

And I dreamt of a factory
Where they manufactured what I needed
Using shiny new machines
And the headstones climbed up the hills


Dance Music

alright I'm on johnson avenue in san luis obispo
and I'm five years old or six maybe.
and indications there's something wrong with our new house
trip down the wire twice daily
I'm in the living room watching the watergate hearings
while my step father yells at my mother.
launches a glass across the room, straight at her head
and I dash upstairs to take cover.
lean in close to my little record player on the floor.
so this is what the volume knobs for.

I listen to dance music.
dance music.

ok so look I'm seventeen years old,
and you're the last best thing I've got going.
but then the special secret sickness starts to eat through you.
what am I supposed to do?
no way of knowing,
so I follow you down your twisting alleyways,
find a few cul de sacs of my own.
there's only one place where this road ever ends up.
and I don't want to die alone.
let me down, let me down, let me down gently.
when the police come to get me

I'm listening to dance music.
dance music.


This guy is best administered in large doses.

God save Stars.

I just edited quite possibly the worst article I have ever read. Ever. To put it into perspective, the average article from The Verge is about 1.5 times better than this article I just edited. Heck, this article is William-freaking-Shakespeare compared to what I just read (though I would argue with Ms. Bortner's claims that "In college, balancing time is an essential skill that is needed to succeed in life," and "college takes determination to actually work.")

The worst part is the article was supposed to promote this great band, Stars, that is coming to campus for free (for students). Instead, the writer chose to essentially write a review of a couple of the band's songs and albums, and explain in the last paragraph what Stars will be doing after the show here (he basically just took a look at the band's tour list of cities and made general remarks about geography). Then he went into a bit of poetry (!!??!?!) for his closing sentence:

"So come one, come all to see the Stars. It shall be a parade of affairs and dreams. Don’t forget your jackets and jeans."

....??!Jackets and Jeans???!....

He also chose to write the article 100 words under the minimum wordcount.

While many, including me, usually subscribe to the view that any press is good press, I believe the poor quality of this article would be negatively associated with the band, thus repelling people who read it and didn't know about the band away from the concert.

God save Stars.

More Open Source applications?

Open Office

And you thought you only got open-source things for applications that were free anyway.

Thanks to Stephen and, probably, his roommate for this one.

(I guess it basically has all the stuff in MS Office, 'cept for free. Which is, in my definition, better.)



(The asterisks [*], as seen in IM conversations, are used to representation a performance of the action.)

(The circumflex accent [^], or carot, as it's commonly called, is meant to read "raised to the _______ power," where the number [or letter] following it is placed in the blank.)

("Raised to the ______ power" is a mathematical phrase meaning to multiply the entity to which the circumflex accent applies [commonly called the "base"] by itself the number of times indicated in the number following the circumflex accent [called the "exponent"].)

(Sigh: 1a. To exhale audibly in a long deep breath, as in weariness or relief. b. To emit a similar sound: willows sighing in the wind. 2. To feel longing or grief; yearn: sighing for their lost youth.)

Monday, October 24, 2005

Serenity Now.

I've got this... the spot on the left side of my face where my jaw meets my skull keeps clicking, like, you know, when you feel like you have to crack a joint? But it's my jaw, and it keeps popping/clicking a little bit, and I can't help but try to make it pop some more. Really weird, been going on for days now.


Our resident movie-reviewer and gamer told the staff today that he got a hate email for his review of Serenity. He gave it a C for some reasons or another, and this graduate student took the time to look him up in the student directory, and sent him an almost six page email on how he didn't appreciate Joss Whedon and Firefly and how he was ignorant, and how Rotten Tomatoes gave it 81% and 87% in the cream of the crop.

Well, I haven't seen movie, series, or any other Joss Whedon stuff (minus Toy Story)(I plan on seeing it sooner or later on recommendation), but Rotten Tomatoes isn't always right, you know. There are very similar marks for Red Eye, the worst movie I've seen this year (yeah, it beats out Must Love Dogs), and definitely the worst thriller movie I've ever seen (yeah, it beats out the remake of Texas Chainsaw Massacre). So, that's that.

The staff member sent everyone his correspondence with this fangirl, and she... well... she really likes Joss Whedon:

I've read LOADS of Serenity reviews and I'm glad you acknowledged most of them have been positive. There is one clear trend among Serenity reviewers -- the less you know about Joss Whedon, the more you don't understand the film.

I've seen Serenity 8 times and will see it every week it continues to play in theaters.

And, she signed the email

Her Name, grad student.

Like it was infinitely important that she list her rank of grad student so she's taken more seriously. Well...

And I just realized I'm totally late for class but hey, I'd rather defend one of my greatest loves than take that ten point quiz any day.

Now, that's quite a grad student.

Luckily, our staff member responded very logically, pointing out that one should not require background information to enjoy a movie (it should be self-sufficient) and that he had even just seen an episode of Firefly, and liked it, but defended what he said about the movie because, well, he didn't think it translated well into a movie.


I guess that the bottom line here is that I want some friggin' hate mail. I'm just gonna start reviewing everything, and giving everything F's until I hit something.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

The Influence(s).

If two of my favorite bands, who have each changed the face of rock in their own ways, started out listening to less-than-great music in their formative years (but eventually surpassed such influences), where does that leave me, having them in the place where they had these other less-than-great acts? I suppose it would be easier to name names.

I read part of the biography, Rivers' edge, about Rivers Cuomo of Weezer. From general Weezer fandom, I knew he was a Kiss fan, but I read this section where, as a teenager, he learned every single Kiss album, playing them with his first, high school band. Kiss? If Kiss influenced anything in Weezer, it was certainly not in Pinkerton. (I guess I can't boldly state that, as I've only ever heard "ROCK 'N' ROLL ALL NIGHT".)

I read this book, Please Kill Me: The oral history of punk, and in it there is this section where The Ramones play in the UK and The Clash were there, just worshipping them. The Ramones? Okay, I can see this a bit more clearly with The Clash, but if The Ramones influenced The Clash, it was certainly not in London Calling. I remember a punk band (could have been the Clash) saying something about the era being just kids in the audience saying that they (themselves) could play better than the Sex Pistols, and then the kids just set out to do just that.

I guess I could say the same about Morrissey, who has released a collection (essentially a personal mixtape) of his influences, Morrissey: Under the Influence, since one of the songs is from The Ramones. And I guess I could mention something about the Smiths covering "Golden Lights," by Twinkle, but I don't know anything about her original recording or other music. Just that that cover by the Smiths is bad.

(One of the Amazon reviews of Under the Influence is particularly amusing. Entitled "I wish *I* were under the influence while listening to this," he notes

"All that is My Own" - Nico
I really hate Nico. I really hate this song. I don't hate this song as much as I hate "Fire and Ice".)

So where does this leave me, the aspiring musician? I'm certain these groups weren't the only ones Weezer, The Clash, and Morrissey (and The Smiths) listened to, but they sure do seem to play a large part in the start of their musical careers.

I guess that is kind of a selfish, arrogant, partially ignorant question, but I'm going to pose it regardless.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Andy Rourke (Part Two)

In addition to his signature, I got a couple of good pictures of Andy from a couple of different angles. Funny part was Matt lent me his digital camera, and when I got to Big Daddy's and turned it on, it flashed "Low Battery" and turned right off. I was major bummed and ran (literally) down to "Mike's Beer Barn" to see if I could buy 4 AA batteries. They, somehow, only had AAAs and 9-volts... ? So, on my way back, as I was dialing Matt to get him to drive down with some batteries, I spotted Rick's Toy Box, and... well, yeah. They had batteries. And they sold them individually. So, you have Rick's to thank for these photos.

This is Andy's setup: an Apple laptop, an iPod, two huge CD changers, and this mixer in the middle (with which he used to turn up the BASS).

Side view.

Andy relaxing. He didn't really dance or move around much, but he did do the occasional air bass guitar and handclaps.

Tweaking knobs.

Andy putting on his (Pioneer) headphones near the end of "Stop me if you think you've heard this one before," in preparation of selecting the next tune.

And, the kicker:

(Is it me, or does he have a David Bowie look going on? His shirt said something about Ziggy Stardust and Johnny Rotten, but his coat never opened enough for me to read the whole thing.)

His setlist, from what I wrote down of what I recognized, was as follows:

"Stop me if you think you've heard this one before," The Smiths. (He didn't open with this one--I think he started when I was getting the batteries, and I didn't start writing down the songs until I heard this one.)
"There She Goes," The La's (Sixpence None the Richer did a well-known cover of this.)
"This Charming Man (N.Y. Mix)," The Smiths (from my CD!)
"Train In Vain," The Clash (I was stoked when I spotted his London Calling CD before he started playing songs. ... I also saw he had the MIA CD, but he never got around to playing a track off that.)
"Such Great Heights," The Postal Service.
Some modern song with "rama lama ding dong" in the lyrics. I googled but could find no answers (don't think it was the Edsels).
"Touch Me," The Doors.
"Last Nite," The Strokes.
"Should I Stay or Should I go," The Clash (apparently he likes Mick's tunes better... maybe just for dancin')
"Take Me Out," Franz Ferdinand.
"Monkey Gone to Heaven," The Pixies.
"Smells Like Teen Spirit," Nirvana (Matt will tell you it's ironic he followed the Pixies with Nirvana, evidencing Pixies' "U-Mass" as the inspiring riff for this song.)
"Been Caught Stealing," Jane's Addiction. Heck Yeah, man! Barking dogs and all!
"Here Comes Your Man," The Pixies.
"There Is A Light That Never Goes Out," The Smiths.
"Somebody Told Me," The Killers.
"Debaser," The Pixies.
"Sympathy for the Devil," Rolling Stones (I correctly remembered this song title! Woohoo!)

And, over two hours of music later, Andy Rourke of The Smiths decides to close his night as DJ at Big Daddy's on Monday Oct. 17, 2005 with...

DEF LEPPARD'S "Pour Some Sugar On Me"!

I guess I was wrong in the last post--Andy played just as many Smiths songs (3) as he did Pixies.
So, he just played a lot of popular stuff, and not the obscure Bristish stuff I thought he would (although, the night of music was neither entirely "80s," nor "indie," as the name of the event proclaimed. Oh well, he's freaking Andy Rourke, he can play whatever he wants.)
This list is incomplete, as I did not recognize 15-20% of the stuff he played. Several times throughout the night, inebriated girls would go up on stage to talk to him and point as his computer screen (apparently requesting something?). One time, a girl tripped over a wire and stopped the output of the music. Everyone started booing--it was hilarious (a simple plug back in brought everything back roaring up). It's amazing how different familiar songs sound at such a loudness (vocals seem higher pitched, for example).

I didn't go back on Tuesday, though I kind of wanted to. I studied instead.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Andy Rourke (Part One)

Allow me to take in this moment:

(Photos of him to come shortly, hopefully.)

When I arrived at Big Daddy's, the second band of the night had yet to start their set, and it was already 10:30 p.m. I knew this was going to be a looong night.

I walked around the place for a couple of minutes, then noticed this average-height, somewhat skinny fellow walk past me and sit at the bar. He had reddish hair and tinted glasses and red Converse sneakers. I looked around and walked past him a few times. I took a stool next to him at the bar after a while, and the band started, and he turns to watch them. In between one of the songs, I say "Excuse me, are you Andy Rourke?"

"Hey! How's it goin?"
"I'm a bit tired. Jet lag."
"Oh, where'd you fly in from?"
[He rests his head face down in his elbow]
"Uhh ... L.A."
"So, you're on tour?"
"Yeah, I'm in the states until November 7th."
"Hey, would you mind signing something for me? Would that be alright?"
"Yeah, sure."
[I take out the above CD; somehow I had the good sense to bring that one--I was thinking about bringing Meat Is Murder for the longest time.]
"Oh, I'm not familiar with this. With this format."
[He plays with the cardboard fold-out front a bit, asks my name, signs it.]
"Yeah, it's, uh, it's a CD of remixes. This is my favorite single."
[He nods.]
"Oh, ... it has the New York mix! Do you mind, do you mind if I borrow this? I'll give it a spin tonight when I DJ."
"Yeah, no problem."


I'll flesh this recollection out later, when I have photographic evidence. I'll even include a list of songs that I recognized from this ones he played while he DJed (bet you can't guess what song he used to close! And what group he played the most songs from [no, not The Smiths, although he did play a few of those--including one off my disc!!!]).

He's going to be back at Big Daddy's tomorrow... with no cover charge (I paid $8 to get in tonight).

I'm considering going back with my old, wooden, three-quarters fender bass guitar and having him sign that, too. That would be so frikkin' tight...

I shook the hand that played the "This Charming Man" and "Barbarism Begins At Home" basslines!!!

Saturday, October 15, 2005


Bass Tab for The Police's "So Lonely."

This is my first submission to the ftp site. Next time I'll pick a more difficult song. I just wanted to see how long it would take to write one of these up, and, for anyone also wondering, it doesn't take long at all.

Yeah, it doesn't take long at all... especially when everything you've written is completely wrong.

Look, I'll do... say, Rush's "YYZ"

q w er ty ima doofus
|--3---------------------------------| Repeat Ad finitum (86 X-s)

You get all the half steps played in the loud chorus, but you can't tell he's (blatantly) playing half-steps in the verse too? And when you write mysterious letters overtop, at least have a legend (yeah, I know what they mean, but that's just dumb). "R"s? C'mon.

And then, somehow, every single tabs site only posts your crappy tab (Oh, sometimes it looks like they post an alternate version, "Bass Tabs 2," but it's still just your tab). Come on Derek, get with the program.

At least reading your tab made me realize something new: I had known Sting's real name was Gordon Sumner, and that Andy Summers played in The Police, but I never put two and two together. Sumner and Summers. And Copeland.

NO, I will not post my own tabs, nor stop making fun of people I don't know on the internet, just because. Because I don't wanna.

(This would be really funny if I was wrong about the notes in this song, but I just listened to it 20 times, so... probably not.)

Friday, October 14, 2005

List time!

I haven't made a list in a while, so (seeing as how I will not present a title, interpret this list in anyway you want) here you go:

1. Joseph Heller

2. Graham Greene

3. Clive Staples Lewis

4. Isaac Asimov


I guess I'll make another list now (since this entry deserves a list all its own):

1. Bill Watterson

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Picture time!

This is a wrapper from a candy my sister and I got in Georgia over this summer. It was comprised of a jelly center that was kind of like an orange slice candy (minus the sugar coating), except purple, and a thin layer of chocolate on the outside. It wasn't that good, but the wrapper is hilarious! "Full of Eastern Promise"!

I sketched this from a picture I found on the internet in anticipation of painting something on canvas. I never did paint anything, but I kind of like the sketch (it's supposed to be a fox, but it looks more like a wolf).

This is most of the photo (all that fit in the scanner) that I bought today from Theresa Kereakes at Vinyl Fever. I wrote an article about her for this event, and it turned out pretty cool, although I thought she was going to bring dozens of pictures, laid out all around, but there were just about 20 over on one spot on the wall. She signed this picture I bought (it's of Debbie Harry... of Blondie, you know?).

Friday, October 07, 2005

Club Jade.

We had a clever performance at Club Jade tonight. Neither the promoter nor we could scrounge up another local band to play with us, so we just did it ourselves (our first "headlining" gig?). The atmosphere was pretty good, it was spacious enough, and the mix of instruments was as good as I could imagine without mic-ing everything (miking?). Turnout wasn't spectular, but we had a good time, were invited to play a Halloween show there (Club Jade), and even got paid?!

I butchered many a lick tonight, I was really tired and kind of hungry (dumples?), and tensed up a little when playing. How strange the mind can be when you can play freely in a practice room, but tense up when in front of a dozen or so people on a stage... with lights. It was a good experience, and the promoter seemed pretty open to us "playing whenever (we) want" (she told us we could play as long as we wanted since we were the only band--we only made it to about 40 minutes since I decided playing the first song we ever played together wasn't such a good idea), although we need to learn some more songs so we have more to offer our core audience of close friends. Then I wouldn't mind playing 2-3 times a month (yeah, right)! Start a scene around here; start a movement.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005


Anyway, my last post referred to my quest to access free student webspace. I followed all the guidelines and posted some crappy code, but then I still couldn't access it. I finally broke down and emailed the computer dudes, and they responded that I needed to manipulate stuff in Unix (they didn't even tell me how to switch to the unix template in my sftp program). So, I type two lines in and hit enter, and suddenly I'm allowed to view my crappy code:

That was just my test page to see if I new what the heck was going on-- I do have a template I got, but I dunno, I'm thinking of roughing it and looking up ways of formatting on my own. For now, those two ridiculous pictures and that section at the top (that was just an exercise in manipulating text) will remain until I think of something good to put up, and some way of organizing the good things I'll put up. (Then, I guess, I'll put those things up!)

Tuesday, October 04, 2005


The people over at ACNS tell me I need to alter some code in Unix to get my webspace to work for me.


Monday, October 03, 2005

Funny Stuff.

I found this while narcissistically searching for myself earlier:

Unique Originals

Evidentally, this is the name of an EBay user, which I find immensely funny, since my Ebay ID is "uniqueoriginal".

Reminds me of (quoted from memory) "Well, then we had to change our name, because there was already this group named The Originals. So, we became The New Originals."


I just googled my name again, because I was talking about narcissistically searching for myself, and I found my name turn up on the first page of results on, which wasn't that strange, but then again, on a Missouri campus newspaper (note: link may not work because site requires free subscription). I knew that the FSView ran articles by other schools, and that such a practice would be mirrored elsewhere, but that's just weird. I wrote that about a band that was playing here (although I didn't make it that obvious, I guess), and they just run it? That's also cool, though. (Here's the same Jimmy article on the FSView site, for those of you who can't access the Missouri site, and actually care about reading it.)

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Things are about to start getting crazy-go-nuts.

Upcoming free shows:

Ambulance LTD. w/ We Are Scientists!!!
John Vanderslice w/ Portastatic
Minus the Bear w/ Headphones

(and many others)

Upcoming weird "show":

Andy Rourke of The Smiths DJ-ing for Big Daddy's 80s night

Also thinking about going to see Wolf Eyes. Heh.

I just downloaded a bunch of music from our cheap Russian friends at (I'm thinking of getting the entire Beatles catalogue [minus ones I already own: Abbey Road and Sgt. Pepper's...] there because, first of all, of the sheer size of it [the prices of new copies would be staggering], my inherent inexplicable fear of p2p programs, and [correct me if I'm wrong] Michael Jackson still owns the entire catalogue?):

Loveless by My Bloody Valentine
In the aeroplane over the sea by Neutral Milk Hotel
Slanted and Enchanted by Pavement

On a related note, I am surprised by my former A&E editor's admission that he has nearly 1,000 albums. But I'm gonna try to keep my album intake to a minimum (esp. the full-priced ones...). I haven't, but have been thinking about, counting my own supply. I think it's hovering around 200 (with a few unnecessary contributions--Hey Mercedes anyone?).

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

No alarms and no surprises.

Decemberists rocked it "emo-pirate" style at The Beta Bar. Sold out crowd, 13-year-old kids dancing, crazy band antics. I've got a couple healthy hours of sleep under my belt for the past few days; I've been opening and fiddling with new technologies (computer, mp3 player, printer) instead of sleeping, and still getting up and going to class. I lost the experiment CD to one of my psych. labs, but it doesn't affect my grade, so I just sit and watch other people do the (computerized experiments).

I swear it's like pulling teeth. Somewhat frustrating, but not really confusing anymore (I don't think so). I keep trying to reconnect, though, for some odd reason. (I don't mind the dentist--I've had good experiences--or even doctors, maybe because I have a high threshold for pain. That's what they tell me--I have a high threshold for pain.)

I should get paid to watch concerts. I do it so well (even though I don't have a good memory for the average ones) and so often, it's a tragedy I don't get money while doing it. My goal should be a career of concert-watching, but would that be like working as an artist or writer--once the art is a regulated service/product, it loses its natural charm (its intriguing nature)?

I kind of want to reserve my comments, this being a publicly-accessible page and whatnot, but I guess I'm not too worried about it. The A&E section is shaky, at best. One week only one person turned in a story on time, no one else even notifying anyone that they would be late. The material submitted is so poorly written (in the majority of cases) that it pains me to read these trite sentences joined together with no perceivable flow. I don't expect professionalism here, but I figure that if people wrote like someone might actually want to read their articles for information and entertainment that the section could get so much better. On top of this (or because of this?) the section has been "getting smaller" over time, so that fewer articles run. I don't understand this phenomenon, but I don't ask questions.

I had some pretty good jamaican food last week, at this place in front of our complex. It looked like it wasn't heavily-trafficked, but the food was very delicious. This caribbean jerk chicken made me sweat (along with the humidity), but the ginger beer I got there was so soothing... It really does taste good and nullify the spices very well. I also had some phenomenal thai food (Masaman chicken) that I chose to get "hot." Well, suffice to say the cook apologized as I was leaving, because she thought that she made it way too hot. I handled it, though, and am only stronger because of it.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Sunday, September 25, 2005


Indie bands, of course!, well-known bands, ok sure, individual people, well duh, groups/organizations, yeah that's cool, animals, that's pushing it, but




No Direction Home, the Martin Scorsese documentary is airing on PBS (check your local listings)(all of those upcoming PBS programs from this page look great) Monday and Tuesday night. I haven't listened to much Dylan, but I'm starting to get his music and it seems like the kind of cultural film thing I would like regardless.

All-Time Top Bargains from Vinyl Fever:

The Features' Exhibit A: $3.99
The Presidents of the United States of America II: $0.99
Nada Surf's Let Go: $4.99
Radiohead's OK Computer: $3.99!!!

"Paranoid Android" alone is worth $3.99 (section from 2:42 to 3:44 is worth $3.99)(yeah, it's better than "Creep"). It is very amazing how these guys, well, play and record first of all, but also have the world of indie rock in their clutches, but they're also a major-label act. They're huge, but not even Paul de Revere can hate them for being popular (or white).

I must tear myself away from Radiohead now and go back to listening to The Weight is a Gift so I can write a favorable review for it (and study for a test...).

5GB Silver Creative Zen Micro in t-minus 2 days. I'm either gonna do a product review article for it, or an MP3 player buyer's guide article. I also snagged a spot for a Calvin and Hobbes homage-article, being relevant because of the soon-to-be-released Complete Calvin and Hobbes collection (drool)(thanks for reminding me, B).

Friday, September 23, 2005


Ok Go.
Watch the "A Million Ways" Dance video. Seriously.

Some fun.

I acts a friend (a certain J.B.) the other day about FSU student webspace, and he responded with a nice email showing me how to access such space (100 MB per student).

Now, all I have to do is learn HTML basics... heh.

Anyway, I'm expecting that I should have something up and running fairly soon (as long as this doesn't turn out like the opera, learning to do an ollie, beating Final Fantasy X [i.e. things I meant to, but never got around to, do]). I'll keep you, as they say, posted.

Anyway, I've got some fantasmic articles coming up--I'm writing about this punk photo event that's happening at vinyl fever (props: Matt), doing a CD review for The Weight is a Gift by Nada Surf, and a commentary, my first commentary, on ... something. You'll find out.

Thursday, September 22, 2005


(X) Pimp-ass new computer.
(X) New Goal (eat one of every item on Pitaria's menu--shrimp pita will be the worst).
(X) New online order (one Creative Zen Micro MP3 Player--I couldn't resist).
(X) Reading very good book (Something Happened Joseph Heller).
(X) Promising position at the newspaper.
(_) Working dryer.
(_) Ability to fly.
(_) Girlfriend.
(X) Nada Surf.
(X) Calvin and Hobbes.
(X) Yankee Hotel Foxtrot.
(_) Time management abilities.
(X) Favorable GPA.
(_) "Beverly Hills".
(X) Still have "No Other One," "Across the Sea," and "Falling for You"; do what you will now, middle-aging-Rivers-Cuomo, there is virtually nothing that you can do, legally or not, to pry Pinkerton from my cold, clenched hands (The Blue Album as well, but that ranks higher only because of sentimental value) or the warming vestibule of my new computer.
(_) Spiritual Enlightenment.
(X) Vegetarian Feast (yeah, it's not great, but at least it's consistent).

Wednesday, September 21, 2005


I slept 15 hours last evening/night and I'm still tired (I had to get up to do a lab report).

If all goes well, I shall be receiving a 31 lb bundle of joy from UPS today. Hopefully one that can read stuff, will help me with my school and work tasks, and won't freeze when I give it too much to do.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Do you ever yearn?

KRAMER (moves over and sits next to George): Do you ever yearn?

GEORGE: Yearn? Do I yearn?

KRAMER: I yearn.

GEORGE: You yearn.

KRAMER: Oh, yes. Yes, I yearn. Often, I...I sit...and yearn. Have you yearned?

GEORGE: Well, not recently. I craved. I crave all the time, constant craving...but I haven't yearned.

KRAMER (in disgust): Look at you.

GEORGE: Aw, Kramer, don't start...

KRAMER (moving back to the other side of the booth): You're wasting your life.

GEORGE: I am not! What you call wasting, I call living! I'm living my life!

KRAMER: O.K., like what? No, tell me! Do you have a job?


KRAMER: You got money?


KRAMER: Do you have a woman?


KRAMER: Do you have any prospects?


KRAMER: You got anything on the horizon?


KRAMER: Do you have any action at all?


KRAMER: Do you have any conceivable reason for even getting up in the morning?

GEORGE: I like to get the Daily News!

KRAMER: George, it's time for us to grow up - and be men. Not little boys.


KRAMER: I'm goin' to California. You know, I got the bug.

GEORGE: Yeah, I think I got a touch of something, too.

KRAMER: No, the acting bug. Ever since I was in that Woody Allen movie.

GEORGE: "These pretzels are making me thirsty"? That was one line! You got fired!

KRAMER: I know, I know, but man! I never felt so alive! Now, are you coming with me?

GEORGE: Uh, no, I'm not.

KRAMER: Alright, suit yourself. But let's keep this between us - we're key brothers now. [Gets up to leave.]

GEORGE: You're not really gonna go to California, are you?

KRAMER (points to his head): Up here, I'm already gone. [Kramer exits.]


That is like something out of Ros & Guil. I really like that scene.


It has become that time of year again. Nature has not yet hunkered down for the long winter, but I am, in my own way, preparing.

I have given up shaving, for the time being. I haven't had a haircut in months. I suppose I'm finally heeding Mr. Clark's advice ("Either hair longer than hers [points to some random girl], or completely shaved"). I'm not sure how long this will go on. I am fickle.

I haven't written songs (words nor music), or even played guitar in a while (band practice doesn't really count for this). I have that usual perception of writer's block, inadequacy in subjects, insight, original riffs, or interesting progressions or melodies. But I'm pretty sure it's not true, it's just my perception of my own writing.

It's a time when I think half of my classes are below me and the other half are pretty much useless. I suppose 'yearn' is a good word for this mood, this moment.


I read about a homeless guy in The Tallahassee Democrat today. A homeless guy that blogs. Well, he didn't use to be homeless. He used to hold down jobs as a circuit designer, making upwards of $75,000 a year, but he drank too much and lost all of his jobs. And his family. Now he goes to the day labor pool and seeks out shelters here in Tallahassee. He updates his blog in the public library. Half of the article was excerpts from his posts, which revolve mainly around political agendas and only recently addressed his homelessness.


I've had many times where I've had so much stuff to do, and procrastinated for so long, that when I finally have time to get stuff done, I just sit around and do nothing for a couple of hours. It's kind of like an "in too deep already," shell-shocked mentality, and I don't think it's all that healthy for me. But it has worked so far, so maybe I'm needlessly worrying about it (and wasting time in the process).

I keep buying more CDs, but I also keep going back to the same three: Wilco's Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, and Nada Surf's The Weight is a Gift and Let Go. I think they complement the feeling of yearning and approaching winter rather well.

Sunday, September 18, 2005


The Beatles
Nada Surf
and others

(what, you may ask yourself, do these artists share?),

Although I appreciate silence as much as the next person, the pseudo-hidden "track" is neither cool nor amusing. It may be artsy to put minutes of silence onto the end of the last song on your album(s), just to have a semi-coherent loop, keyboard section, ambient fog, etc., but it is helping me none in the entertainment department. Hidden tracks, while more tolerable and less pretentious, are still undesirable and, as a rule, never as good as the main tracks.

Thank you.


I only bought two CDs today (both new):

Tallahassee by The Mountain Goats -- I saw these guys (this guy) John Darnielle (okay, yeah he performs with a bass player, but it's pretty much all him) at the CDU and The Beta Bar last year and I went to the official (unofficial?) site to the MP3s section and downloaded everything there (38 songs). I wasn't all that impressed at first- crackily stuff, very rough recordings and very sparse (the majority of them with just his voice and his acoustic guitar). I stuck 'em in a list and just listened to them straight through. Then, again. Then, listened to them again. Then I bought their first album, Nine Black Poppies and was severely disappointed (I didn't listen to that enough). It is the winner of the lo-fi recording movement contest, hands down. But this album is much later and sounds much better. I want more.

Odelay by Beck! -- ... It's Beck.


I have three tests this week (that should be illegal). I have an article to write for Tuesday (I should have done a long time ago) and I have a couple of lab write-ups. The Deathray Davies (and Posies) are tomorrow (I have a test on Tuesday)!

I beat Mario 64 yesterday (didn't get all the stars). The ending was a little disappointing, but the music was good. I'm watching The Simpsons now and the TV speaker is crackling. I have some cool articles coming up, I think.

Oh, I spent sometime time yesterday configuring my email client (Thunderbird) so I could send messages out. I discovered that I had to change the server to my ISP, comcast (that took a while to figure out). I was proud.

Thursday, September 15, 2005


This whole digital revolution has taken an impact on my cognition. Posting information online is throwing off my whole flow.

I usually have a pretty good memory for discussions I've had (in person, on telephone, in email, or even in IM) but posting my opinions online has lead to a few moments of uncertainty. I mean, I'll be offering my usual witty insight on some current affair with my close friends, and if I had recently "blogged" the subject, then I will wonder if I'm needlessly repeating myself. I'll inspect faces for a look of recognition, pause for dramatic effect to see if they jump in with what I was going to say, glance around nervously.

Only a couple of times has someone (usually the same person) acknowledged (usually tacitly) that they've heard the info before, but it'll still take a moment for my brain to trigger that I've written on the subject and the person has read what I've written. Then it just gets weird.

Weird. Still weird. Still weird when I type to someone in IM and then later that week we'll talk in real life and bring up info from the IM. Still weird. Weird, man.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Much Music.

CDs I bought last weekend at Vinyl Fever:

Dungen - Ta Det Lugnt -- A Scandanavian group that does some sweetly-rocking tunes.
10,000 Maniacs - MTV Unplugged -- 99 cents? Sure, why not. Only has (invisible) sratches on two tracks, skipping through some of the more laid back sections (pretty frustrating, but for 99 cents... well.)
The Soundtrack of Our Lives - Origin Vol. 1 -- Classic rock-influenced, but well done modern elements as well. Not terribly exciting, but good (for $4.99).
Teenage Fanclub - Bandwagonesque -- Wanted to hear about the fuss. I guess the fuss was well-deserved, but I'm not absorbing it right away due to other listenings (Bloc Party, Wilco, Nada Surf...)
Orenda Fink - Invisible Ones -- $1.99?!?! For a new release (promo copy)? Why not? (Haven't listened to this yet.)
Bloodhound Gang 09.27.05 - I honestly don't know what this is, but it was on the counter when I was checking out and I asked the guy "What is that?" "It's free." "Okay!". I haven't unwrapped/listened to it yet (just says it has snippets of songs of the upcoming release, and a video for "Foxtrot Uniform Charlie Kilo," the single from said album).

CDs I got at the FSView meeting on Sunday (free):

The Sharking - The Sharking -- I think this is an EP, but I can't tell (only 6 songs). Good CD art, and even better music. Says on the promo sticker that they sound like Apples In Stereo. Yeah, I can see that.
Fine China - The Jaws of Life -- It says they sound like the Smiths. Yeah, right. Sounds pretty cool from the first couple of tracks that I listened to, but nothing to write home about.
Minus The Bear - Menos el Oso -- I think that's the title, it's written in cursive and I don't feel like looking it up on allmusic right now. This sounds really pretty good. It's a lot different from how I remember them playing live last year, but then again I have never heard any of their recorded stuff before. Only that one performance, and my recollection of it isn't even that good. Just that I enjoyed it. Excited to see them coming back to the club this year.

CD I bought today:

Nada Surf - The Weight is a Gift -- I've been eating up Let Go like the great Greek cuisine of the Pitaria, and, consequently, I bought this today at Vinyl Fever after classes. This is, I think, the first album I've bought on the first day of an album's release. It is sounding especially good at the moment. A little bit more atmospheric on the second half, but the first few songs are like a glorious extension of Let Go.

CDs I added to "the list":

The New Barenaked Ladies Live CD I saw at Vinyl Fever
The New Roger Clyne and The Peacemakers Live CD that's out

I want those two because both of their previous live albums are freaking amazing (Rock Spectacle and Real to Reel, respectively).


The New Wilco Live CD that's coming out November 1st, even though I'm pretty sure I got all the recordings of that concert from this generous, and well-informed Blogger.

I apologize for not hunting down the pictures of these album covers for this post, as I did that one time, as I found that post to be visually pleasing. But, as I've said before, I'm lazy. Leave me alone.

Sunday, September 11, 2005




According to Hyman Brown, a University of Colorado civil engineering professor and the World Trade Center's construction manager, 1 and 2 World Trade Center were designed to survive an impact and resulting fires from a collision by the largest commercial aircraft at the time, a Boeing 707-340.


Why Did the World Trade Center Collapse? Science, Engineering, and Speculation


It wasn't until Dr. Thomas Eagar saw Building 7 of the World Trade Center implode late on the afternoon of September 11th that he understood what had transpired structurally earlier that day as the Twin Towers disintegrated.

The special ingredient is children's cough syrup.

Senate OKs Restrictions on Cold Medicines

The bill would require stores to sell Sudafed, Nyquil and other medicines only from behind the pharmacy counter.

"It will very substantially reduce the number of local labs that are out there because it throttles the ability of the cooks to get the pseudoephedrine that they need to make the methamphetamine," said Sen. Jim Talent

"This bill will put thousands of meth labs out of business across the country," Feinstein said.

RESPONSE: The Internet.

Way to go, guys. Why don't you limit whipped cream and other aerosol cans, household cleaners, glue, too?

If I've learned one thing about drug users from reading Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk it's that addicts will do whatever it takes. A couple of The Ramones put BAGS OF GLUE OVER THEIR HEADS. They bought aerosol cans at the grocery store.

Oh, well, maybe they'll restrict access on the internet, too. (Yeah, right.)

Friday, September 09, 2005


I feel kind of bad about pointing this out, but since it will probably make it to publication... well, I just thought those outside the circulation of the FSView would like to share in a writer's insight:

"A Sound of Thunder has come up with one of the best creature ideas I’ve seen in awhile: the Monkey Lizard. This simian/reptile hybrid pack hunter descends upon its prey like mosquitoes fly into a bug light and, by its design alone, is easily the most interesting thing about this movie."

I spent about five minutes trying to figure out what the writer was trying to express with this simile. I still don't understand it. Anyone have any interpretations?

Thursday, September 08, 2005






Thursday, September 01, 2005


This school year hasn't exactly had a superb start; it has seen me sleep through the second days of three of my classes, be nearly out of gas during a 'crisis', lose my advisor, and come down with a twinge of sickness (that's getting better, though), all before the end of the first week of classes.

However, I also got promoted at the paper, can see the Pernice Brothers tonight, am (supposedly) receiving financial aid distribution today, and all of my classes are looking better than I thought they would.

Anyone who reads this and has not seen A Very Long Engagement now knows exactly what to rent this weekend.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005


My first clue should have been when my email was returned with the reason "unknown user."

I decided to drop by her office in the Psychology building, but the name on the door had changed. I was slightly confused, so I asked the man in the office next to it.

"Jennifer Ringel's not here?"
"No, she doesn't work here anymore. Is there anything I can do for you?"

I was taken aback. I stood silent for about eight seconds then mumbled some question under my breath.

"Excuse me?"
"Yeah, I just wanted to know about a double major in Latin."
"You'll have to check with the department of Modern Languages for that."

That's right: My academic advisor doesn't work here anymore.

This sort of thing isn't supposed to happen. I thought advisors were for life, like the Supreme Court. When one leaves there are nominations, various levels of approval, votes casted. There was no notification to me, not even an email ("I'm not working here anymore, talk to Mr./Mrs. _________ for all your future advising needs" would have sufficed). After waiting a year and a half to talk to an advisor, finding out she was really nice, and then having her leave the very next semester...

Now I don't even know who my new advisor is. And I'm not too keen to find out, either. Heck, the new person could be even better than Ringel, but I don't care. Ringel was Ringel: someone I had met (once), had emailed (once), someone reliable that was there.

Whatever, I know what I'm doing anyway. (For the most part.) (In enrolling for classes, not in terms of future schooling, subjects of interest, career, my ability to have glass successfully removed from my feet, nor what to write about for commentary articles in the FSView.)

I think.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005


I woke up way too early for my classes today, thinking I needed to be on campus at 9:30, when it was really 11:15. I walked down Pensacola, down Stadium's underpass. I had two of my psychology classes today, and both of them are looking more promising than I imagined, mostly because the prof.'s were entertaining people. I've really had exceptional staff members as instructors these past couple of years and wonder how I pick 'em so well.

This past weekend I was informed that I was promoted to A&E assistant editor, and I have edited a bit so far, but I have some left to do right now. So I'm listening to Sinatra and looking forward to deleting commas, inserting dashes, etc.

We watched the original Godzilla tonight, in the special director's cut release that came out last year. This is the first of many exciting titles lined up for the SLC this fall (A Very Long Engagement, Sin City, Singin' in the Rain, A Streetcar Named Desire, Back to the Future) that I'm looking forward to seeing on the big screen.

I wrote a rather charming review of Broken Flowers today. I was actually a little proud of it and will be glad to see it run and give that great film some (more) press.

...Anybody hear the new Kanye West? How is it?

Sunday, August 28, 2005


Jimmy Eat World was last night and we had people from Gainesville all up in the house. It was kind of muggy, but they gave out free water. Opening band, christian hardcore outfit Underoath, was better than I thought they would be. Jimmy Eat World... I mostly just liked the songs I knew.

*People whose only constructive criticism of my writing is "Maybe put a little more intellect and quality. I guess I just mean use bigger words. Sometimes one big word can take the place of three words." (he also has a weak handshake. And doesn't like white people despite being one of them [and told me not to trust them either]?) are nearly as irritating as girls who decide to overturn metal garbage cans to stand on top of them (garbage everywhere) to better see concerts.

So, Friday night we went to party in Gainesville, and Saturday they all came up and partied to Jimmy Eat World. It was a pretty good weekend, overall. And today I get to go to an FSView meeting to learn about being assistant editor of A & E, which makes the weekend even better. (Godzilla showing at the student life building would have been the coup de grace, but I'll have to see it tomorrow because I'm going to the meeting today.) I haven't done anything all week, but it seems to be picking up considerably this weekend in anticipation of the starting of classes.


How about that hurricane? And those Miami 'canes?

Friday, August 26, 2005

Yeah, I still write for the paper...

Ever notice how prevalent hypothetical situations are in social interactions? People talk about what they've done, what they're doing, and what they've going to do, but they also joke around with what could be happening right then. Part of our childhood imagination escaping through socially condoned speculations of whether we should just take the whole box of pizza, run around shouting... okay, well these aren't really good examples, but you know what I'm talking about.


I lost a promising interview this morning because they could not locate that particular Sprint subscriber on the network. He said he was in Maine and that I should call him back if we get cut off, and we did, and I did, but one hour later I was still not talking to him. Well, at least I have the cell phone number to a semi-well-known indie rocker, although I would find difficulty using it in any way other than calling him and saying "WHY DIDN'T YOU CALL ME BACK TO CONTINUE THE INTERVIEW" and then hanging up. Or something.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005


Five CDs in one day. I'm pretty sure I set a personal record there, especially since I got them at three different places (I think I only ever got four at one time, and it was probably at Best Buy).

This Charming Man Remixes, The Smiths: I got this at "Mike's," a.k.a. wherever (weeeird word there) that guy with a beard decides to set up his bins, this time outside the FSUBookstore. It's actually... a CD of different versions of one song, including some remixes from some Francois Kevorkian dude. Oh, but it does have a song, "Wonderful Woman," from the group that I had never heard before. I think this was worth the $6, since I remember listening to this song ("This Charming Man") over and over and over again a couple years ago, listening to and playing along with the bouncing bassline (my favorite bassline, in fact) and the jangly guitars (quite possibly my favorite guitar intro-riff as well).

Shoebox EP, Barenaked Ladies: I also got this at Mike's (I think that's his name...) for $5. I'm counting on the Ladies to come through on this one, since I haven't had time to listen to it yet. It contains a bit of material from Born on a Pirate Ship (I think) and, coincidentally, when I pick up that album, my BNL collection will be complete (I think).

Summerteeth, Wilco: I headed down to Best Buy to look for audio cords, but they didn't have what I was looking for. They did, however, have CDs. From my cursory rounds of the Rock section, I brought it down to four selections. Based on the simple, sweet majesty of

Yankee Hotel Foxtrot,

which I bought a couple weeks ago and have listened to religiously, I decided to pick this one as the album-from-a-band-I-know over the tempting Building Something Out of Nothing (Modest Mouse) that was at Best Buy for $10.99. (I got this Wilco for $11.99.)

Open Season, British Sea Power: Based on the cool coverart, with its deep, calming blue (yes, these are things I consider) and dancing bear, and a couple of positive, if not glowing, reviews of the group and this album, I decided to go out on a limb a bit and picked this one over Beck's Odelay!, which I considered the safe bet. Another $13.99 of my hard-earned FSView wages.

Let Go, Nada Surf: I actually looked for this album at the other places I was buying CDs today (since Brandon went so Nutso over it), just to check out what kind of price it was going for. Looks like it was going for $4.99 in the budget rock section of Vinyl Fever!!! This is reason number 3652973610 why, if Vinyl Fever ever opened up a room for rent, I would pay outrageous monthly fees to live there, waking to the sound of The Clash and Tom Waits, the posters of Radiohead and Sleater-Kinney, that famous picture of Johnny Cash on the hugest poster I've seen, and a sea of the coolest CDs I can imagine now. (And that employee that gets really excited about Mike Patton and talks very loudly about eight minute drum solos.) And the disc was in perfect condition. Ain't no scratches or nothin'! Despite my spending of a lot of money, I decided this was an opportunity I could not afford (ha!) to miss.

I'm so excited that I'm just about ready to go to sleep.

This is why I still read Ebert.

Although he slips up sometimes (giving Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead [the movie] zero stars because it did not do justice to the live performance of the play he saw, in London -- he basically said everything about the movie worked well, but he didn't feel it worked well as a movie...), Roger Ebert is definitely the man.

Don't think so? Check out his review of Chaos, then, the letter he received from the movie's makers, and his response (maybe even the review for Open Water that he links to there-- it's pretty cool, too), and finally the report from an L.A. opening of the movie (this link may change, since it's a blog page and I couldn't find the anchor for the specific entry).

I liked the part where he talked about Greek Tragedy aptly.

When I read that reader's contribution, I had to check out the site (which I won't link to because it really is dumb), and what do I see but this hyped-up warning:

Warning: You are about to enter the website of the most brutal film ever made. This website contains material from the motion picture CHAOS that is of a highly disturbing nature. Not reccomended for persons under 17 or the weak of heart.


I admire people who comb through enormous amounts of movies (or albums, or books) and relay information on the more important and less important works (although I have a growing concern for reading and writing music reviews which I might go into on another post) that are available; especially when they use a relative system, instead of an absolute one, which Ebert explains in his review for Shaolin Soccer.

And In response to a particular harsh reception of a three-star rating for The Longest Yard, Ebert comments

Those who consult only the stars have only themselves to blame. If stars were all that mattered, why would I go to the trouble of writing a review? Nor need stars be immutable. "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly" is now in my Great Movies series, and "The Godfather, Part II" is headed there. That is a de facto upgrading to four stars.

Attentive reading of "The Longest Yard" review, especially its final sentence, will show that persisting with three stars was my way of punishing myself. Not everyone appreciated this attempt at irony, but I must say I enormously enjoyed writing that review. To cravenly cave in would not have been nearly as much fun.

And, wielding so much power in the media world, I'm sure he gets loads of stuff like this:

Q. When you wrote a review of the movie "Bewitched," you sir, were a liar and a charlatan. You stated you never saw the program when it was on television because you were reviewing hundreds of films per year, which did not leave you much time to watch the tube.

May I remind you that you did not write your first review until 1967 and by then "Bewitched" had been on for three years? Possibly you might like to rethink that line of reasoning and pursue another feeble excuse. All you had to do was look at one or two episodes and I suspect even you might be able to determine the present piece is nothing more than garbage that should not be considered in the same breath as the original series or movie.

Gil Effertz, Frazier Park, Calif.

A. My bad. I forgot when I started not watching it. (Source.)

Sunday, August 21, 2005

HQ (2)

Moved into the new place today. Everything is looking and feeling a little better than I expected. When I arrived, two sets of parents and half a huge budget truck were strewn about the parking lot, wood furniture and office chairs mixed and cluttered on the pavement. Sweat.

So, the previous tenants had a dog (against the rules) that pissed all over the carpet (way against the rules). The Staff tried to clean it out before we parked the biggest moving truck imaginable outside our building, but it wasn't getting the stench out. Shame, really, that carpet really tied the room together.

The hours of 11 AM to about 6 PM were spent sitting out in the parking lot, sweating, moving heavy furniture to the third floor hallway, perspiring, watching two ruff-ians installing new, brown carpet, glowing, and shifting dozens of boxes and cartons around inside the new HeadQuarters.

In all reality, whatever the weathermen report, Summer '05 officially ended yesterday. As an overall rating that is not absolute, but relative, I would give this summer a big, honkin' B- for reasons I am too tired to delineate at this point in time.

Hats off to HQ (2), a.k.a. Tuscany Village Apt.s.

Monday, August 15, 2005

The One-oh-Strummers

The 101ers — Elgin Avenue Breakdown Revisited

Rating: B+

Before Joe Strummer gained international fame with The Clash, he was playing rock and roll standards and rhythm and blues originals with a pub rock group known as The 101ers. Never having released an album proper, The 101ers’ only output was the single “Keys to Your Heart,” which was released a month after their breakup, and Elgin Avenue Breakdown, a compilation of three recording sessions and several live tracks assembled by Strummer five years afterwards. Astralwerks’ Elgin Avenue Breakdown Revisited is a revamped collection of 101ers’ songs extended to twenty tracks from the original’s dozen with previously unreleased material and a detailed history of the band written by one of Strummer’s friends, Allan Jones. Jones relays (among other things) Strummer’s first description of the band: “They don’t have much money, he says, and … they’re not great musicians.” If that last part was ever true, it is thoroughly discredited from the searing guitar solos, soulful arrangements and clean, precise playing displayed throughout the recordings on this album.
Elgin Avenue Breakdown Revisited begins with the blistering “Letsagetabitarockin,” a two-minute burst of energy in the vein of Little Richard’s “Tootie Fruitie,” with Strummer spitting out the words like Chuck Berry on “Maybelline” (no wonder a cover of Berry’s classic turns up on the second half of the disc). One can almost sense the punk movement rising up through Strummer’s chugging rhythm guitar; turn up the distortion, simplify the walking bass line, and remove the slick R&B licks of the lead guitar, and the resulting mix would provide the breeding ground for The Clash’s self-titled debut.
Although The 101ers never greatly overstepped the bounds of pub rock, the mixture of songs on this album display a certain stylistic depth. With fast-paced numbers like “Motor Boys Motor” and “Sweety of the St. Moritz,” grooving, laid-back songs like “Surf City” or the glistening “Sweet Revenge,” and different shades of songs in between, Strummer shows his flair for writing with a quaint blend of styles early on in his musical career. “Keys to Your Heart,” for example, one of the catchiest songs here (included in two versions), is also one of the most diverse. Starting out as straightforward rock and roll, the song slowly progresses into a reggae feel with the help of a bouncy, melodic bass line, plucked guitar that begins to go into off-beats but then reconsiders, and Strummer’s trademark vocals, speak-singing some of the lines and bringing his whole soul into the delivery. Amazingly, as revealed by drummer Richard “snakehips” Dudanski’s liner notes, this is Strummer’s first self-penned song.
The second half of the album is a set of live tracks littered with covers, among them Van Morrison’s “Gloria,” the Rolling Stones’ “Out of Time,” and the traditional tune “Junco Partner.” These tracks display Strummer’s burgeoning showmanship with his strong vocal delivery and even a bit of interesting banter. Although they’re not a very good quality, the live tracks will interest both fans of old time rock and roll and The Clash alike (especially considering one of the originals, “Lonely Mother’s Son,” contains the chorus of The Clash’s “Jail Guitar Doors”).
Elgin Avenue Breakdown Revisited will most likely be enjoyed by Clash enthusiasts as a welcomed addition to Joe Strummer’s catalog, but those unfamiliar with the group or the man might want to consider picking up London Calling first.

Techno Savvy

I've felt a bit technologically savvy lately. (Savvy is a cool word with a cool Latin etymology, I should use it more often.) I installed a CD player in my car since places were charging an exorbitant amount for installation/parts (I thought that was "inexorbitant" until I looked it up and realized that I just always used it with the indefinite article in front of it and "amount" after it). I did cut the FM antenna and had a bit of trouble mounting it with that plastic fitting kit, but fixed the antenna with dad's help and rigged the mounting to make it work. I just installed my CD-R drive into my sister's computer since mine won't recognize it and it turned out it works fine (was a bit of a beast though, with the small, compact HP tower I was putting it into...!). So now I've been burning mp3 CDs to use with the aforementioned car CD player (starting with the stash Brandon had on that computer...hmmm, . yeah, Toadies. yeah).

I'm reading this book, Something Happened, by Joseph Heller (his second novel) and he uses parentheses just about as much as periods (literally, almost). He'll open one in the middle of the sentence, going off on a tangent for a paragraph, or a page, or two pages, close the parentheses and go right back into the end of that sentence. What a badass. He also does weird stuff with the parentheses, like correct grammar. He'll write a sentence like:

It was a secret between him and I (me).


It was me (I, I know. Ha.) that was at fault.

And at random times, he'll just insert (ha)'s. Very strange. But very compelling. Most of the narrative is just the narrator talking about situations or characters or using some flashbacks. 200 pages and only half a day has gone by. I love it.

Anyway, so a friend of a friend is going off to Iraq (talked about making a will and stuff), I've got glass in my foot that I've tried to get out for about a month or so and will see a physician tomorrow about it, I've got my eye appointment tomorrow, I haven't packed for this week of vacation, nor my big move back to Tallahassee next weekend, and I've two articles to write in two days because I procrastinated super-bigtime even though I had all the time in the world (one of those days means within the next 8 hours, and I haven't started it yet), but hey, you know me, I can't complain.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005


Check the warning on my universal AC adapter:

"This product contains chemicals that are known to the State of California to cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm. Wash hands after handling."


Sunday, August 07, 2005

Yahoo! Audio Search.

Yahoo Digs Up Audio Files for Audiophiles

"With Yahoo Audio Search, users have a starting point for finding all audio-related content available on the Web, making it easy for users to find, use, share and expand their knowledge of audio-related content," Yahoo Search spokesperson John Thrall said.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005


Everybody's got their story to tell,
Everybody's got their own portrait of hell.
Mine's not exciting,
Mine's not exciting,
But I wrote ten thousand words about you.

In my younger days I
Thought I must prove
Myself through games Olympic,
Girls, money, and booze.
It's not that exciting,
It's not that exciting,
So I swore to give it all up for you.
My bitterness too.
Give it all to you.

Somehow, I miss all the cues.
Listlessly you play with your food,
I think nothing better of it.

Now that I'm paranoid,
I seem to find you overjoyed
At all that troubles me
You're my cute little enemy.


I've fallen into disrepair,
Living in the soft contours of your hair.
It took months for me to recognize
The weathered cracks pervading your disguise.

Let's socialize,
If you can find the time.

In a shard of glass I spied my face,
My dull blue eyes have turned a bright shade of green.
My broken past now comes to mind,
With details clear that I'd rather not find.

Let's comprimise.
When you can find the time.

I need a helping hand
To hold you down.
I think I know a man
Who'll follow you 'round.

I think I know a man-
Best detective in town.
Best detective in town.
Best detective in town.

He'll follow you 'round,
He'll follow you 'round.
All around this town.
Listening to every sound.