Monday, October 29, 2007

Ted Has A Blog

I'm usually reluctant to mention startups before they've established a commitment to blogging (cough Gav cough Opedog cough), but Ted writes for a "living", so we should be OK.
Playing in a real band is, at the best of times, a million times funner than playing Guitar Hero. Even playing in a really crappy band that goes nowhere is much more fun. And, it is extremely easy to play in a real life band. You know that band, The Killers? With the exact same amount of effort that most casual players of Guitar Hero 3 put into the game, anyone could learn to play a real instrument as well, if not better than anyone in that band does in real life.
I tried to learn some guitar. I could play U2's "One". I got those little fingertip calluses -- kind of cool. Ultimately, my hands didn't like it much. I couldn't make all of the necessary formations. I failed.

Also, I hated The Killers before it was cool to hate The Killers.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Nary A More Merry Itinerary

Matt drafted a schedule for our upcoming vacation:

2/2/2008....Kansas City / Montevideo
fly like the wind/maybe sexy time

beach day/fucking/mass

city/more beach/sex/booze

2/5/2008....Montevideo / Bueno Aires
ferry/sex/not getting stabbed/inebriation

2/6/2008....Buenos Aires
soccer?/sex/not getting stabbed/beer

2/7/2008....Buenos Aires / Iguazu Falls
fly/not crashing/boning/drunk

2/8/2008....Iguazu Falls
falls/sex/drinking/not getting eaten by pumas

2/9/2008....Iguazu Falls / Ascuncion
bus/sex/not getting shot/fun city

2/10/2008...Ascuncion / Santiago
fly/boom boom/nice dinner and cocktails/mass

2/11/2008...Santiago / Valparaiso
bus/cocking/ball shaving/spooning

drinking/kayaking/sex/sex on a kayak

2/13/2008...Valparaiso / Santiago

hiking/bang screw/drinking


2/16/2008...Santiago / Kansas City

Saturday, October 20, 2007

All Feldmans Are Douchebags

Saturday morning's revelations:
  • Snapple's cold, sweetened Earl Grey is delicious.
  • I would like to murder the host of NPR's "Whad'Ya Know?". Fact: this show airs for every moment of the goddamned morning. I spend so much time avoiding it that I usually miss the good NPR programs. Michael Feldman is about as funny as his name. As overcooked rice. As palsy. Fuck that guy.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

On "The Road"

He thought each memory recalled must do some violence to its origins. As in a party game. Say the word and pass it on. So be sparing. What you alter in the remembering has yet a reality, known or not.
--Cormac McCarthy, "The Road"
I'm enjoying it immensely, despite the glaring holes it has exposed in my vocabulary. A non-exhaustive list:


I think about how good of a writer Cormac McCarthy is, and wonder how or if his writing has evolved. Did even his first manuscript shun punctuation? How does he decide to leave the apostrophe out of "wont" and "dont", but add it to "they'll"?

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Who Fucked Out The Feeling?

I keep a notepad on the end table next to my bed, so that I can quickly document any overnight revelations. At 5 a.m. Tuesday, only seconds after waking and still chuckling to myself, I scratched out a short phrase in the darkness: "fucked out face".

In my dream, Shawn used this terminology to describe a young woman's facial expression. He thought that she looked "fucked-out", as in, she was exhausted from all the fucking.

I make this distinction because one may easily interpret "fucked out face" as something far more vulgar or misogynistic. Indeed, I expect that many will find this post while searching Google for examples of this other interpretation.

* * *


Jeff Johnson provides the definition of a great 2.0-era blog post.

The Onion is still great.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

This One's For The Ladies In The House

My mettle was tested when I was asked to decided to burn a road trip CD for a handful of sorority alumni. I will take you through my thought process for each track. I've provided a link to Hype Machine for some selections, should you want to find and download those tracks. [Actually, Hype Machine won't load at the moment, so you'll have to figure it out yourself...]

Regina Spektor - On the Radio

"Let's ease into this with a pretty song by a strong female vocalist."

Hot Chip - Shake a Fist

"Oh, snap! You thought this was going to be Lilith Fair? You thought this was going to be easy?! I'm no chump! Strap yourself in for some experimental dance riffs!"

The Fiery Furnaces - Tropical Iceland

"I put this at the #3 slot, so please please please love this song like I do.

Tegan and Sara - Back in Your Head

"Let's get back to some basic pop..."

Beck - Sexx Laws

"...and some funky modern classics."

Lisa Loeb - Do You Sleep?

"Wait, how old are these girls again? Weren't they in 4th grade when this song came out? I don't care if this does push us back to Lilith Fair territory -- the Loeb anthology must not be overlooked."

Eve feat. Gwen Stefani - Let Me Blow Your Mind

"As a reward for relearning 'Do You Sleep', here is some hip-hop that I know you kids are so fond of nowadays."

Liz Phair - Fuck and Run

"Post-collegiate girls up to no good!"

Beastie Boys - Sure Shot

"I want to say a little something that's long overdue: the disrespect to women has got to be through. To all the mothers and the sisters and the wives and friends, I want to offer my love and respect to the end."

Prototypes - Tir aux Pigeons

"Chicks love French stuff."

Le Tigre - Deceptacon

"Let's put two really weird songs back to back..."

The Beatles - Got to Get You Into My Life

"...and cleanse the palate with a swinging ode to pot that was once performed by Joe Pesci."

Destiny's Child - Say My Name

"This song will spark a discussion of previous instances during which men have attempted to 'run game', or when they 'acted kinda shady' with each of the ladies."

Feist - Mushaboom

"It's probably time to play a modern song again."

The Rentals - Friends of P

"Again, I'm showing my age here, but who wouldn't like this song?"

Madonna - Don't Tell Me

"I'm sorry, but I don't own 'Like A Prayer'. This is the best I can do for you."

Franz Ferdinand - Do You Want To

"A little Scottish rock never hurt anyone."

Sheryl Crow - Can't Cry Anymore

"Women must find this empowering, because I find it empowering."

Rilo Kiley - Portions for Foxes

"I think this was used in an episode of 'Grey's Anatomy' once."

Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Cheated Hearts

"This would be a good song to play during their 'Thelma and Louise'-like end to their trip."

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Shouting With Fire In A Crowded Theater

10/7 UPDATE: I had the setlist wrong. Another website lists it as:

1. Black Mirror
2. Keep The Car Running
3. Neighborhood #2 (Laïka)
4. No Cars Go
5. Haïti
6. In The Backseat
7. Born On A Train
8. Intervention
9. (Antichrist Television Blues)
10. The Well And The Lighthouse
11. Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)
12. Neighborhood #3 (Power Out)
13. Rebellion (lies)

14. Crown Of Love
15. Wake Up

* * *

Surprises from the Arcade Fire's September 28 show at the Starlight Theater in Kansas City:

Funeral songs outnumbered those from the more recent Neon Bible!

In addition to one cover (The Magnetic Field's "Born on a Train"), seven selections were taken from Funeral (Tunnels, Laika, Crown of Love, Wake Up, Haiti, Rebellion (Lies), In the Backseat), while only 6 from Neon Bible were performed (Black Mirror, Keep the Car Running, Intervention, Well & the Lighthouse, Antichrist Television Blues, No Cars Go). I thought the whole point of releasing a second album is so that you don't have to play the songs you got sick of performing during the first round of touring. Not that I mind -- I was quite pleased with the setlist.

[photo taken from Flickr, as mine were uberblurry]

They played some sad shit!

"In the Backseat" might be the saddest song I've ever seen performed live. It seemed like terribly heavy material for 10 p.m. on a Friday night. They led off the encore with "Crown of Love", which is far more lyrically abstract, but I suspect just as melancholy. Oh, and despite its bounce, "Haiti" is pretty grim: "In the forest, we are hiding / Unmarked graves where flowers grow". Would you expect anything less from an album titled "Funeral"? I guess when 3/4 of your material is sad, you're going to play some sad shit. I could delete this whole paragraph, now pointless, but then what would you have to read? The last post in which I mentioned "In the Backseat"?

A friend of a friend got up to use the restroom as the anthemic "Intervention" began!

Who does that?!

I saw three black guys!

What's more surprising? A black youth attending the show in an Andrew W.K. T-shirt, accessorized by dogtags, a tilted Yankees cap, and a tiny white bluetooth earpiece? Or the elderly couple attending the show, seated near the top of the amphitheater, trying to comprehend the modern world that created an audience for LCD Soundsystem?

Singing backup Arcade Fire lyrics en masse isn't really satisfying!

It was a good show, hampered by two things. First, the location. It's always a little awkward to rock out in a location designed for a seated public. Standing next to your seat is only slightly more exciting than sitting on top of it. I like my rock shows to feel a little more dangerous, and a little more communal.

That leads me to the second point. While I'm sometimes angered by fan singing along with the lyrics, an exception is always made for singing backup. The Polyphonic Spree show was made great when all the fans shouted along with the Spree choir. One would imagine that the all of the oohs and OOO-OOO-OOO-OOOHs and LIES! LIES! peppered throughout the Arcade Fire catalog would produce a similarly inspired swell from the crowd, but it never materialized. Have you ever tried to sing a falsetto LIES! LIES! with any significant volume? It doesn't work. Such efforts are best suited to the Spree's bah dah dup dah dahs -- which I'll be experiencing again in a few short weeks. Good times.

Monday, October 01, 2007


I'm rooting for the Rockies and everything (I used to own their black and purple hat, like, 14 years ago!), but it's hard to get seriously excited about a team that trots out Josh Fogg to start the tiebreaker, AND relies on a Jeremy Affeldt / LaTroy Hawkins combo for big relief moments.

"Hey! It's me, Josh Fogg! I'm super average! Sometimes folks will pick me up if they're desperate for a win in their fantasy league*, but then I get immediately dropped! See you at the big game!"

*At least, that's how things were 3 years ago, before I retired from fantasy baseball.