Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Seeing Is Deceiving

So I was just futzing around with the digital camera the other day and for some reason just decided to take pictures of my old stereo cabinet, the one that I've had since the late 80's. Actually there isn't any stereo inside of it, but it does house a portion of my record collection from about A-D or E, I believe. It really has been a hella long time since I went digging around in there. Maybe the slightly more interesting ones will be the future subject of my next snap-happy endeavor. Ho boy, Laurie Anderson through... uh... Devo. Perhaps not.

And I suppose you can tell how old this cabinet is by the coverage of super-rad 1980's-1990's Punk Rock® stickerage I pasted over it throughout those early years. Hey it was a shitty cabinet I got for a sawbuck at a church flea market so you're not gonna hear me gripin'. I'm a little sad that the glass lid fell off into the street and shattered when I was moving it years ago from one apartment to another. The lid stickers were probably the best, including a Dead Milkmen one autographed by a very, very wasted Joe Jack Talcum which read "I will not keep off the grass, love Joe" and a little doodle of a lawn with a sign post stating those words. Indeed.

Sorry about the flash in some photos, but this cabinet is mostly made of glass and I guess I couldn't completely get that glare off, and it wasn't even visible without it. Also, sorry that I am even posting this prosaic goofiness. But I'm bored.

This is the top half of the right side of the cabinet. The Bowling Doughnuts sticker is from my friend Big Kev's old local punk zine, which I used to contribute album reviews and comic strips. The Pee Tanks were a wacky little punk group from DC. Great buncha guys that I think stayed over at my house one night.

This is about midway down. I got that Rage Against The Machine sticker back before I think the band had ever come out with their first album yet. They mailed us a press kit years ago with that in the envelope and I just liked it enough to put it up there.

The bottom right side. Anybody remember The Blue Up? The album Spool Forka Dish was one of my favorite disks from 1995. And I don't know why that Powerman 5000 sticker is there. I never liked them. I think a friend of mine gave it to me and I just slapped it on to cover that little hole of space. That may have been the very last sticker that I ever added to this monstrosity.

This is the top front of the cabinet glass door. Pretty much the first stickers that I started with, being that I had a collection just sitting around collecting its own dust in a drawer. That Frank Zappa one was the first and only one for almost half a year before the rest began to follow.

The bottom half of the front door. Ant Man Bee was a great local funk band in which a buddy of mine used to play keyboards, and that little yellow and black Dial-A-Song is the They Might Be Giants Dial-A-Song hotline number that I got from inside one of their CDs. I doubt you can see it, but there is a teeny tiny pinkish sticker at the bottom of the Bad Religion sticker that my best friend designed years ago. It is the famously crude "Pitch In!" drawing on the sides of city trash cans of the little man throwing something away in a wire wastebasket, but instead he is throwing away a swastika and instead of "Pitch In!" it says "Mach Mit" which is German for... gosh, I don't remember. "Join In" or "Do away with" or something like that? A friend of ours who speaks fluent German suggested it. Back when several local punk shows were being overrun with Nazi skins my friends and I printed up tons of those little stickers at Kinko's and papered the town with them. We even covered one whole side of a Nazi chick's car in the middle of the night. One of the local toll booths had one on it for years before it was torn down. Ah, the days of my snot-nosed idealistic youth.

This is the top inside of the glass door. Ha! I remember when I lived at home I put that Depeche Mode "Personal Jesus" sticker on the inside of the door so that my mom wouldn't bitch about seeing the naked lady's butt. Although I made certain to put the one of the naked Frank Zappa sitting on the toilet on the front of the door instead.

And this is the bottom half. Duuude, an original Lolapalooza sticker! Was I cutting edge back then or what?

Now this is the top left hand side of the cabinet. Yes, I have a Suzanne Vega sticker. You may all touch me now.

And finally this is about... well, partway down the side. I didn't get the bottom half of the cabinet because I have a huge teetering stack of books leaning up against it and I was too lazy tom move them away for the rest of the sticker show. Another Bowling Doughnuts sticker, and an Nsect Club one from back in da dizzy. And I want to add how proud I am to own an original Ministry sticker (between Dinosaur and Stranger Than Fiction) back when they were a New Romantic 1980's synth pop band with fake English accents, which was when I was first introduced to them. Considering what they look and sound like these days, they would probably hate to now that this old image of theirs still sees the light of day.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Seductress Of Bums

Man, I SO rule. I sold my Wanda Jackson employee pick today. A guy came in looking for rockabilly and I was like, "Dude... Wanda." and foisted it all upon his person. And nothing... nothing beats the thrill of standing there (im)patiently while your customer puts on those headphones and starts playing your recommendation over the listening station, watching their face carefully morph from an expression of bland expectation, to wide-eyed surprise, then their smile greets you and you know you have them in your power from that moment on. It is a true better than sex moment. After he left I made a complete spectacle of myself. I was doing that very lame "Yessss!" arm jerk at work all throughout the rest of the day. Someone really should have just walked up and punched me.

So now I put up Faithless' new greatest hits album, Forever Faithless. Can I suck up to the Danceteria types? Ho HO! Jus' watch meh.

{{{cracking knuckles}}}

Monday, August 29, 2005

Boys Keep Swinging

Wow. What a freakin' punch to thuh gut, that movie Oldboy. Came out around 2003 in Korea but was finally just released state-side on DVD recently, and after trying to watch it in English dubbing I switched over to subtitles immediately because the dub sounded comically "off" to me for some reason. I generally prefer foreign films subbed over dubbed anyway, but I can usually muck through when there isn't much choice. However in this case it really does make a whole world of difference.

Based on the manga of the same name, Oh Dae-su is just a normal married man with infant daughter who is kidnapped and held prisoner in a tiny one-room apartment without human contact and absolutely no word of explanation as to why. When he is finally, mysteriously released after 15 years Dae-su is hell-bent on revenge against his torturer and with the help of a pretty young sushi chef named Mi-do he tries to piece together the mystery behind his unexplained imprisonment and torture, but although he may be physically free from that tiny little one-room apartment, his 15 year-long tormenter has only just begun to make Dae-su's life truly miserable.

This story unfolds like a fable, a Greek tragedy told with kinetic editing and special effects that enhance yet never overwhelm the picture or obscure the acting. One of those rare thrillers that keep you guessing all the way to the very last frame of the film, and for one as jaded as I that's quite a mighty fine treat to experience every now and then.

Oh yeah, the octopus scene? Ew.

And what with thuh teeth and all? I had a less squirmy experience watching Marathon Man.

Go git it, ya'll.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Miles To Go?

I just realized yesterday that I have only 20 more pounds to lose before I reach my final goal. Turns out that these final 20 pounds are going to be the ones that will probably end up killing me.

I know the last few pounds are always the hardest to lose, but damn. What I've been doing isn't working like it once did. I've cut back significantly, even more than I am supposed to, although I admit I've slacked off a bit on exercising this past week just due to sheer exhaustion. And bloody hell, I'm hungry. And a little stressed. And did I mention that I was hungry? Oh, yes I did.

If I wind up posting a lot about this over the next few weeks I apologize in advance. I just need a place to plot this out and keep me motivated until I reach the end of this Herculean endeavor. It's like I am on the final mile of the marathon and I can't just drop out now.

But I will say that my calf muscles look GREAT!! {{{flexing}}}

Friday, August 26, 2005

I Smell A Seinfeld Episode

So it appears that we are installing an "Employee Picks" wall in our store as of yesterday (oh nice, just almost over a year since I initially brought up the idea to my boss), and I'm thinking may as well make a sport out of it and try and see what I can sell people -- or rather, what I am capable of selling people. Maybe I can build up some kind of a "rep" with my credible choices, then really throw them off by putting something incredibly ridonkulous under my name with some really pretentious write-up about how "it will chaaaange your life" and see if anybody falls for it. Right now I put up Wanda Jackson's Queen Of Rockabilly, a good and respectable choice first.

Now, we wait.... {{{rubbing hands together}}}

Also picked up some... yes, some actual CDs FOR A CHANGE! All used, natch. I'm still too much in the poor house to shell out for retail.

Something that I've wanted for ages, Ray Charles' Modern Sounds In Country And Western Music...

For years I had only heard his version of Floyd Tillman's "I Love You So Much It Hurts" as well as the magnificent "That Lucky Old Sun" from the Malcolm X soundtrack, so I am right delighted to be pickin' this pup up. Many R&B artists growing up in the south who remember segregation like Ray, James Brown, and Isaac Hayes were raised listening to country/western radio stations (many "colored" stations weren't allowed down there in some places) so these were the songs that often motivated and inspired many soul singers like Ray Charles, and this album is sort of his tribute to the songs of his childhood.

And finally another copy of If I Should Fall From Grace With God by The Pogues...

My friend taped this for me years ago but the tape broke after putting quite a lot of mileage on it and I could never find another copy anywhere, which lead me to believe that it was perhaps out of print. Turns out that it's an import, and boo-yaa... got me an import for $6.99, me hearties. This album brings to mind certain New Years Eve recollections of drunk friends trying to sail a boat on the super-rough waters of the Norfolk harbor to watch the midnight fireworks, and everybody being very wet and cold and seasick and laughing their asses off. This album was playing, and um, let's just say that it made very appropriate background music for the whole drunken sailing experience.

Once About A Time

This morning at 2am one one of Joe's employees called and said that he quit. Since he was supposed to open the store this morning Joe now has to open AND close, so basically he has to work from 9am to about 1am straight. And all this happens just a few hours after he talked to the guy and told him that he was going to do everything that he could to accommodate this guy and make things at work running smoothly for him, whatever it takes.

I understand that these things happen in this line of business all the time, and believe me, this isn't the first time something like this has happened (or something similar at least). But damn it crushes me to see Joe get jerked around so much at his job. I don't want to sound like a mother hen, but I worry about his health constantly, and this job is stressing him to the breaking point, I can just tell. And I feel so helpless. I think that's the worst part -- not being able to do anything myself to make it better for him.

So anyway, I did manage to talk my manager into letting me go a little early last night so that I could attend The Brothers Grimm preview with Joe (turns out she was going herself as well). We ran into Danny in the parking lot and Joe gave him his extra pass so we all sat together with Joe's friend from work and his girlfriend (also saw my manager and her girlfriend a few rows up, and even the guy who works at Trilogy was in the row in front of us with his family -- we said hi).

The Brothers Grimm is about two brothers from back in Napoleon occupied Germany who made a business out of conning uneducated, superstitious villagers by "exorcising" their towns of witches and evil spirits, while one of the brothers jots down each fable told to him as a possible story idea. But they are confronted by the real thing when a small village on the outskirts of the dark Bavarian forrest keep losing their young daughters to an mysterious evil force. The movie incorporates several bits from the Brothers Grimm original fairy tales, like Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Rapunzel, Hansel and Gretel, Cinderella, and Little Red Riding Hood, giving us the impression that these elements gave the brothers their initial ideas for their famously dark fables.

The movie itself was -- cool. Sadly that's all I seem to be able to comment these days on most of Terry Gilliam's more recent work, and this is a director whom I once believed could do no wrong, as Time Bandits and Brazil are two of my all-time favorite movies. Visually the movie is wonderful, which we can always expect from a graphic artist like Gilliam. And in the tradition of most German children's stories he kept the horror element amped higher than probably any film of his that I have ever seen, going with fantasy shock tactics that remind me somewhat of movies like The Ring.

Yet despite what a visual feast his movies are, I still get a sensation of something... lacking. Something, perhaps, anchoring the action or momentum, giving weight to the story besides the usual mystery angle. A movie like Brazil was anchored down firmly with rich satire, social commentary, true hair-raising horror, and a more-compelling-than-most love story. I didn't feel any of the weight in this picture. I knew what the premise was, but it didn't invest me in the characters or the story in the way that a character like Sam Lowrey does (and I hate having to use one of Terry's older movies to compare to a latter one, but that's sort of what I mean). I dunno... don't pay any attention to me, folks. My head ain't screwed on right just now.

I just met my old childhood best friend's 2-year-old daughter Ashby a few minutes ago. I absolutely cannot get over how much she looks like my friend at that age. I guess we were both about 2 or 3 when we met and started playing together. I'm just... a bit overcome at the moment. Damn.

Thursday, August 25, 2005


Sat 27: 5-cl
Sun 28: 11-5
Mon 29: 9-5
Tue 30: 1-8
Thur 1: 1-8
Fri 2: 9-5

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

You Is Still My Baby Blue Baby

Been quite a few Vancey items up for bid on eBay these days, although I have to say this is one of the most obscure that I have seen so far; an actual set list for the House Of Schock (whom the seller had seen in concert that night, met the band, and had signed by back-up band members Chrissy Shefts and drummer [and close Vance friend] Steven Fischer).

Note how the song "Never Be Enough" was joking written as "Never Be A Muff". A rare glimpse into the buttoned-down mind of Mr. D?

Ever curious about what ever happened to Vance's famous signature baby blue Fender Precision bass from back in his days with The Cold? No, of course you haven't, You Who Have Lives. But *I* have. Behold the magic of gooooogle! New Orleans blues act Boogie Chillun's bassist seems to have acquired it along with the way (with the additional added inline pickup that Vance apparently installed later). Care to compare? Here's a fuzzy snap of a strapping young Vance circa 1980 with his faithful blue baby...

Hmmm... welp, certainly does look like a baby blue bass. Save for the white pick guard on the Boogie Chillun's, I uh, suppose it could be the same one. Aw heck, I'll take their word for it. Why would they lie, right? Anyway, purdy keen! Although I sort of had a head full of all these romantic notions of Vance still cradling his long-time baby blue sweetheart in bed with him every night, clinging to those heavenly memories of the past. Kind of dashes those to bits, I'm sad to say.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Don't Boldly Go There, Girlfriend...

Not all Trekkies are pedophiles, but are all pedophiles Trekkies? A bizarre article from The Huffington Post trying deperately to find some sort of correllation, based entirely on a couple of episodes from the original series only.

Check out the comments section, too. I don't know what's stranger... the article itself, or some of the people responding to it.

Monday, August 22, 2005

A Pox On Michael McDonald

Alright, you mugs. Scrape your hairy tuckuses off the couch right now and carry it straight down to your local movie house and see The 40 Year Old Virgin. Like, now dudes. Give my man Steve Carell all the opening week rah-rahs he deserves.

Of course I'll go see anything Steve Carell does without question. But the extra added incentive is the writing and directing by Judd Apatow, creator of one of my favorite TV shows of all time, Freaks And Geeks, and like that marvelous show this movie is full of both broad and subtle humor mixed with heaps of humanity. And Steve is an utter doll (than again I always thought he was :-)). This was the perfect vehicle for him and even if the movie doesn't reach Big Hit status he'll still have this for everyone to look back on as the best thing he has done on the big screen, if not his whole career. Even during his most slap-schticky moments you never stop believing for a minute that Steve's character Andy isn't a real flesh-n-blood believable human being. As much potential for two-dimensional behavior as this character could be capable of, Steve takes him bodily out of Cartoonland and makes him into somebody you'd probably know in real life. It's the most nuanced thing I have ever seen him do.

And another big shout out to Seth Rogen (Cal from Freaks And Geeks) who plays Andy's friend from work who (with Paul Rudd and Romany Malco) try to help Andy lose it with their own individually conflicting advice, even though each of them have their own sexual/emotional baggage to work through themselves. And Catherine Keener as Andy's sweet but neurotic love interest. Pretty much an kick-ass cast all the way around.

Go see this, peoples.

Oh! And I used to have that same Steve Austin Six Million Dollar Man action figure with the bionic eye when I was a kid. Never did have the one of Austin's boss, though.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Love And Herbal Tea

I'm sure this must be some kind of Star/Globe quality celebrity gossip rag so taken with a grain of salt it will be. But daaaamn... if this is true, then I have officially lost my Steve Coogan girl-woody forever. Cuz ah mean holy sheeit... that's just plain narsty.

Friday, August 19, 2005

A Grimm Fairy Tail?

Yesterday I worked on my walking lunges while I was at work (which must have looked quite ridiculous to customers and co-workers alike), not to mention a few in the waiting room at the auto insurance place (luckily I was the only one there that morning) while they were photographing my car. Now my legs are utterly useless to me. I walked for about an hour and 40 minutes today and the backs of my thighs feel like they are on fire. If anybody comes into my store tomorrow expecting me to hoof it around that thunderdome-sized area for their damn Hillary Duff CDs they can just carry their asses over to another "Get Used..." shirted happy-face and pester them for a change. But on the bright side I suppose these things work, if I am hurting this bad. Isn't everything that's good for you supposed to make you suffer for it? Bugger that. I'm gettin' a bike.

I have free passes to Terry Gilliam's new movie and I WORK THAT NIGHT! {{{mope}}}

I'm going to try and get some music files up here soon, when I get the time again. By the way, I would absolutely love you forever if somebody could show lil' ole me how to convert M4a files into MP3's. I think that would make things easier for everyone involved, I do believe.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Unfinished Business

Got this swell burn from Chris G. last night of the M.I.A. (Maya Arul) debut Arular, which another girl at work has been hypin' to me for several months when she had it up on her feature rack. Supposedly very interesting tonal dance rhythms and "world" beat mixtures and multilingual vocals, and Chris says she's been used in mash-ups -- pretty good schtuff, so I hear! I just loaded this into my iPod late last night so I'll be giving this one a spin this week while I'm out and about on the town.

Oh yes, more happy accident hilarity: Just got back from having my car photographed at the insurance claims department, and he did detect a small ding in the center of my front bumper along with the minor paint scrapes. Says that it can be repaired with heat lamps to melt and mold the bumper back into place, providing that there isn't any further functional damage beneath the bumper itself. He can cover about 80% of the cost, and the 20% is for me. I have a $100 deductible so it will probably come to about $138 or around that. Meanwhile I gotta call and check on the status of the case tomorrow and see where the other woman is going with her injury claim before I take it in.

Meh. If it ain't one thing.

Oh and speaking of which, the bathing suit I ordered online is NOW out of stock! Merde. It will be frikkin' December before I get to swim again.

Alrighty enough of my crabbin'. Thank you again for the disk, Chris! Hope you get a little bit of enjoyment out of that Daido Mariyama photo book I loaned you.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005


Thur 18: 4-cl
Sat 20: 2-9
Sun 21: 12-7
Mon 22: 4-cl
Tue 23: 3-cl
Thur 25: 1-8
Sat 27: 5-cl

A Tear Of Petrol Is In My Eye

So the lady who's car I hit the other day is claiming injuries, saying that she went to the doctor and says she needs all kinds of physical therapy and whatnot. Boy, did I see this coming a whole other galaxy away. But I talked to my insurance claims agent and he talked to her and saw her car and, well, basically thinks she's full of shit. I did nothing but take some paint chips off her bumper, and there is zero damage to my own car (save her paint scrapes on my bumper), and she's making it sound like I slammed into her. The cost to replace her bumper will be about $515, and most of that will be for labor anyway, so that's really the extent of the auto damage right there. Still, I recorded a statement over the phone and tomorrow morning I'm going over to the insurance office to have pictures taken of my car as evidence. He tells me that there's a good chance she'll drop the I-just-won-the-lottery injury claim once she sees that she doesn't really have much of a case. Meanwhile I'm being as honest as I can about the accident. I freely admit it was my fault. I have nothing to hide.

Still. Man, was I depressed yesterday when I heard about this. I was a total zombie at work yesterday, just feeling so beaten low. I'm feeling slightly more optimistic since I talked to my agent. I'll probably feel even better after I get my pictures made. I suppose we'll see what happens from there.

Groan.... ah say, GROOOOANNN, I said.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

I Felt The Same Way Once

Hi-dee ho, kittens! Sorry I haven't had much of a chance to update over the past few days, but life in general has been keeping me off the web a bit more than normal (or rather normal for me, I reckon). I have some more music and other inanities to post soon once I get a chance, but in the meantime here's pretty nifty link to a Guardian article about Michael Powell's postwar films as written by sci-fi author J.G. Ballard. Well, it was pretty nifty to me.

The Prophet

Monday, August 15, 2005

I've Got My Black Belt In Barstools!

I got myself into a minor fender-bender yesterday. Nobody was hurt, as far as I could tell (the other passengers were being weirdly cagey about it -- yeah I know, oh dear) although I did bang my hand a little bit. Feels better today, so no harm done. Still just a touch rattled is all.

Last night I watched Foxy Brown on DVD (good heavens, if there was ever a woman who could get me to switch teams, I would soooo be Pam Grier's bitch) and you know that scene where Foxy is at her brother's house throwing his furniture around and going berzerk? Well, I had a dream last night that Stevie Wonder was throwing furniture around and going berzerk. Stevie Wonder? That blind gentleman who sang "You Are The Sunshine Of My Life"? Anyway, don't know what brought that on, but it certainly seemed to make sense while I was dreaming about it. Although seen through the light of day the next morning it's pretty damn hilarious.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Wagging Tail Eagerly

The Circus Theatricals website has posted a somewhat recent short article on the company from Backstage West (May 2005) that talks a little bit about the theater group and its history. I was always curious about whether or not Jack had a hard time prying himself away from the family circus tradition to go his own route into acting. I betcha this guy's got a lot of great stories to tell about his family, probably dating all the way back to Barnum.

No new word on a new theatrical production, though. I keep checking back every day. Okay, okay... several times a day to see if there are any updates. Don't know what the likelihood is of me making it back out to L.A. this year, but I never rule out what I know I am capable of when something this tempting lies waiting across the flyover states.

Meanwhile, it's 7:30am and Joe is in the living room blasting "Uncle Fucka" from the South Park soundtrack very, very loudly.

Friday, August 12, 2005


Fri 12: 2-9
Sat 13: 9-5
Sun 14: 12-7
Tue 16: 1-8
Wed 17: 5-cl
Thur 18: 4-cl
Sat 20: 2-9

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Extra Vancey

The Famous Pies debut album Extra Fancy grows on me more and more. I admit I'm biased, natch. Anything my Vance DeGeneres touches I personally want delivered directly into my hands for my thorough inspection (that may also involve a little bit of deep inhaling and, er uh, licking? -- I still keep the envelope that the disk came to me in because it has my name and address written on it in Vance's distinct script). The sequencing and arranging of the tracks that I had already heard (as MP3s on the website before the album came out) are good, and the new production gives them a cleaner (yet no less meaner) tone. But really these are just pleasant, upbeat little pop songs along the Vance-writing vein, with more guitar jangle and de rigeur female singer whose voice is soft and high but pleasing, if lacking some muscle in moments. Funny, knowing what I know about Vance (or more accurately what I have extrapolated only from the information made public) these songs read like his personal diary jumping right off the page, having written every track on the CD himself. Lyrics about never wanting an 8-hour work day and pursuing his musical ambitions in "Dreams", recalling his glory days in The Cold in "Now You Know Better", and his well-worn trademark topic of heartbreak and obsession in tracks like "Take", "Funny Orange Hair", "I Own You" and "The Mend". In all it's a particular style of pop that I used to enjoy and haven't revisited in quite awhile, but hearing Vance and Co. revive that Simple Pop Melody standard has been a pleasure to wallow around in again, especially when I am taking my morning perambulation through the sun-dappled tree-lined avenues of my neighborhood.

You can listen to tracks off The Famous Pies album by clicking the Extra Fancy link above. In the meantime I thought I'd add a special bonus; "Another Day's Gone By" by Ivan Neville, from the out of print 1988 CD If My Ancestors Could See Me Now and written by Ivan Neville and Vance DeGeneres. Not really one of my favorites, but I like it enough to put it here and it's one of the few times that I have heard someone with a recogizable name in the music business sing something that Vance penned and actually put to CD (many famous artists have performed Vance's songs, but I haven't found many recorded to disk).

*Another Day's Gone By by Ivan Neville (from the CD If My Ancestors Could See Me Now)

*This track is only available for 7 days on this page.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Coitus Reservtus My Tuckus

Got a book in that I ordered off eBay, Eunuchs For The Kingdom Of Heaven: Women, Sexuality, And The Catholic Church by Uta Ranke-Heinemann. Steve Holmes recommended it but I had a hard time tracking down an English translation that was still in print, but I managed to get my mitts on a cheap used paperback in excellent condition. Dr. Ranke-Heinemann was the first qualified female lecturer (and later professor) of Catholic theology at the University of Essen in Germany.

From an excerpt from The Library Journal: "This broadside against the Catholic church's approach to sexuality portrays it as misogynistic, guilt-inducing, and joyless. The author accuses the church of ignoring Jesus' loving attitude toward women and the healthy sexuality of Judaism, adopting instead the jaundiced attitude of Gnosticism and Stoicism. She has almost nothing favorable to say concerning scores of theologians and church lead ers: Augustine, whom Ranke-Heinemann believes was mentally ill, and Aquinas are discussed in especially unfavorable terms. The author was ousted from the Catholic theology chair at the University of Essen in Germany because of her writings on Mariology, and this work is already a cause celebre in Europe. It's easy to see why. Interested laypeople will want to explore the controversy for themselves."

Looking forward at least to exploring her opinions and research on the subject.

For Those With Burglar Phobias

A little levity today from one of my favorite writers/illustrators/humorists, James Thurber.

The Night The Bed Fell.

Monday, August 08, 2005

A Melody From A Past Life Keeps Pulling Me Back

Every night at 6:30 pm I always tuned in to ABC News. For some reason I felt like I was getting a much less biased delivery of the news from Peter Jennings than anyone else on at that hour, and it's weird now not being able to hear his voice echoing throughout my apartment at 6:30 every evening. I remember reading a statement somewhere warning us to be prepared for the passing of Peter Jennings within the next day. Or did I dream that? How quickly the man seemed to go. I hope there wasn't any pain in the end.

Another loss this weekend...
Ibrahim Ferrer

He was born on the dance floor of a social club in Santiago, Cuba (his mother went into labor early at a dance), as if he were always meant to be there, at the center of everyone's attention. A pioneer of the polón rhythm -- thought to be an imitation of the sound produced by stomping coffee beans -- he sang throughout most of his youth but never made enough money to support himself or his family so most of his long life was spent in poverty until the attention brought to him and his magnificent voice in Ry Cooder's film The Buena Vista Social Club and subsequent album, followed by Ibrahim's own solo CD, and the Afro-Cuban All-Stars. Said Ibrahim in his own words, "An angel came and picked me up and said, 'Chico, come and do this record.' I didn't want to do it because I had given up on music. But now I have my own record, my first one ever, so I'm very happy. I don't have to shine shoes anymore."

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Little Things In Little Boxes

I think it was around 1984 when the Waxing Poetics first formed and immediately started making their mark upon the local scene of my home town area, although I was probably about halfway through high school before I actually started hearing about them. Their first album Hermitage (Emergo) was produced by R.E.M. bassist Mike Mills and spawned the first song that I had ever heard from them called "If You Knew Sushi" when I caught the actual video for it on MTV's 120 Minutes back in the summer of 1987. Lucky thing I was taping the show that night! Their second album Manakin Moon (Emergo) produced their biggest single "Baby Jane" which still gets regular rotation on one of our local FM rock stations. Their final album Bedtime Story (Roadrunner) came out around 1989 when I was working at the same record store with the band's lead singer/songwriter David Middleton (far left in photo) and we'd play it in the store while us gals cooed and sighed over Dave's ragged croon. My favorite track on Bedtime Story was "Manakin Moon" (ironically not on the actual Manakin Moon LP) which highlights David's acoustic guitar gently driving his voice along with a quietly powerful momentum.

It's a shame I was initially too young to really experience the Waxing Poetics during their zeitgeist. But I consider myself quite lucky to have caught several of their reunion concerts, possess all 3 of their albums (which are now all out of print), and develop a dear friendship with David Middleton over the years.

Check out the Waxing Poetics tracks below. They are only available for 7 days so get them while ya can!

Baby Jane (from the CD Manakin Moon)
Manakin Moon (from the CD Bedtime Story)

* And let me know if anybody has a hard time downloading these. I didn't get much feedback from the last music file post so I hope they are sending out okay.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Use Your Illusion

It's been too hot to type. I'm sitting here in a pair of shorts and a bra just trying to cool down. Oooo, sexay (not). I know, how lame is that. Too hot to type? But my fingers bloat up like fat lil' weenies when it's particularly sticky outside and touching anything can give me the squiggens like hearing the squeaky sounds of somebody squeeze a water balloon (wow alliteration ad nauseam!). This kind of heat reminds me of the summer of 1988 when I was living on my old college campus in an old apartment building, with temperatures nearly 100 degrees every day and no AC except for three rotating table fans, plenty of ice cubes, and copious cold showers. Since I was the only one on campus living on the second floor apartment I was able to pretty much walk around the joint starkers without much worry of being seen, until that one day I was sitting in the living room chair wearing nothing but the morning paper on my lap when I just happened to look up and there was H.B., an African exchange student that I knew from the previous school year, just standing there quietly at the open front door smiling with his hands behind his back, and hadn't bothered to make his presence known until I noticed him standing there so heaven knows how long that was. I pretty much wrapped the newspaper around me as I demurely side-stepped out of the room to put on some clothes. So basically ever since then I try to keep my britches on no matter how much of a hermit I believe that I may be. Plus no more traumatizing the neighbors so no petitions to get that painted hussy in Apt #432 out of their fine upstanding community.

Other than that I have to say that my spirits have been soaring this past week. Amazing how far I've come since the first day I started this blog over a week ago feeling like poo, and how much things have been improving so rapidly since. Maybe it's just because I have an outlet again. Or maybe it's the support I've gotten. Or just the good week in general that I've had. Sure things haven't fixed themselves financially, and there's the ever continuing drama at work... but it's the little things this week that have been doing it for me. All the exercise I've done (walking and running is a real stress reliever) which helped me lose the 5 lbs I gained last week, and rewarding myself with some swell CDs and comix, and the possible promise of a big business trip to Europe in October (nothing official yet!) I kind of feel like kicking up my heels right this minute. I'm feelin' quite thuh goddess -- smartsexytalentedcompetent -- and no I am aware that this is just an illusion brought on by the endorphin high from a long walk (and possibly a little heat stroke mixed in there) but it doesn't really matter when you feel this good how things really are. I'll be better prepared to face all that other crap I gotta sort through when I'm experiencing this level of invincibility right at this moment.

Aw, fiddlesticks. I'm takin' the bra off as well. Wheee!

{{{{whips it off}}}


{{{straps it back on}}}

'Kay, bad idea. Let's not go nuts now, shall we.

Thursday, August 04, 2005


Fri 5: 2-9
Sun 7: 11-7
Tue 9: 3-cl
Thur 11: 1-8
Fri 12: 2-9
Sat 13: 9-5

It Does A Service

As promised, some of the delights that only good ol' fashioned snail mail can offer.

Received the CD Extra Fancy, the new album by Vance's new band The Famous Pies. I was a little surprised that Vance sent it to my parents' house since I pretty much always thought that my paypal had my home address on it, so it was a little spooky to hear that this arrived at my mom 'n dad's instead of here. Either way... yay! I have already heard most of the songs on this disk but I'm going to give it a listen and see how it sounds overall, and if there are any different versions here than what I've heard as MP3s online.

Also a package from Amazon containing the CD What We Must by Jaga Jazzist, whom I have heard nothing but good things. Or, well, at least interesting things. Jazz-fusion-electronica-rock kind of affair, from what I hear, although I think this particular album may have the band veering off more into rock due to the addition of more guitar in the mix. Another one that will be getting a lot of play this week as I take it in and I'll try and get back to this with more later.

And lastly The Complete Dirty Laundry Comics by Robert Crumb, Aline Kominsky-Crumb, and Sophie Crumb. The Crumb clan's compilation of combined work, crossing their styles and characters together on the same page, having them interact with each other as they tell their autobiographical tales of American expats learning to assimilate in France as well as getting along with each other. I love all three of these artists' work and I look forward to exploring this venture together.

Oh, and I got the latest DVD from "Papa", but certain laws of the land won't let me post the box cover. Let's just say that, uhhh... it was the first thing I cracked open this afternoon. Nyahaha-HA! :-)

Okay I'm pooped. For for Tor to go to bed...


Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Pist Is Wot I Am!

Gahhh! Joe's been in court all day today, and we were supposed to have a day off together. Our first one in months, in fact. Phooey. At least we'll plan on going out for Japanese hibachi tonight when he gets home. If he gets home (dun-dun DUHHH!). Nooo, Joe did nothing wrong. He has to be a character witness for somebody else. What sucks is that they'll probably not even use him. Oh, well.

Got some goodies in the mail yesterday and today that I'll try and get to later when I can.

Gotta go take a run while the earth starts to cool.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Kickin' Chickens On The 6 O'Clock News

I just remembered another item that I wanted to add to the ongoing "wish list".

Actually I have posted about this before in ye olde bloge, but it bears repeating -- I would like to find a copy of he song "If Eggs Had Legs" by Jack Blanchard and Misty Morgan, originally found on the album Two Sides of Jack & Misty. I am mostly trying to hunt down that one song, but I'll settle for the entire album if I can get it.

Back around 1987 (or 88?) there was the tiny little country radio station out in the boonies of Rocky Mount, VA that let me go digging around in their basement where they kept huge stacks of promo records that they were never going to play on the air. Found the little 45 single to this song, a wacky little novelty country ditty that I used to put on everybody's mix tapes back in the day. Silly lyrics that always brought a smile to my puss, and the little "quack" part of the song would near have me rolling with fits of hilarity:

If eggs had legs and long hair to their knees
They'd run through the flowers shinny up trees
When they tiptoe to the city better lock all the locks
They'd drink up our wine and take our dirty socks
If eggs had legs they'd steal a football shoes
You can see 'em kickin' chickens on a six o'clock news
Well they don't give a (quack) they got nothin' to lose
They're on the way to Tennessee that's why I got the blues

[ guitar ]

If eggs had legs and long hair to their knees
You could hear 'em bite their toenails up in the trees
Drinkin' our wine gettin' stoned as an ox staggerin' around in our dirty socks
Little hairy legs in socks and football shoes
You could see 'em kickin' chickens on a six o'clock news
Well they don't give a (quack) they got nothin' to lose
They're on the way to Tennessee that's why I got the blues
They're on the way to Tennessee that's why I got the blues
They're on the way to Tennessee that's why I got the blues

Was this a poke at the "hippie movement" of the day? (the song came out in 1972) It's almost 18 years later since finding this single and I'm still trying to figure out what these lyrics mean.

But the single has since disappeared. Gone into that netherworld where a chief portion of my old singles seemed to have followed one another. The rest of the singles are sitting in a box in the hallway closet. I can hear them snickering at me when I pass. They ain't tellin''.

If anyone just has the song I'd appreciate it. Although at this point I've grown increasingly curious as to what the rest of the album might sound like.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Issues, Repeatedly

So here's the rub. I'm still in the process of trying to buy a house, but the market is insane right now, and I've been outbid on everything that I've bid for. I need more money, but I'm not getting it from where I work, and it's now doubtful that I ever will.

But if I get another job now then I'll probably have to wait another year before I can apply for a new homeowner's loan, since they told me that changing jobs, unless it's within the same line of work, doesn't look good on your credit report and you have to prove that you're going to stick it out with your new job long enough to be able to cover your loan. I love the job. I like what I do. But there's not much in this town that can be considered the same line of work that pays any more than what I'm making now.

So do I wait until I finally get a house before I look for a new job? Or am I just finding new ways to procrastinate so I don't have to leave the job that I love.

Gah. Sigh.

In other news, it's 9:00am and I really want some Thai food.