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2011-06-22 03:40 pm

College So Far 7

The chemistry lab is up on the third floor, so whenever anyone walks close to you, the floor trembles a tiny bit. Just enough to notice, but not cause alarm.

Except for me, evidently. I walk around the lab, and beakers and test tubes clatter in their racks. "Dude," says the friendly football jock over by the eyewash station. "Whenever you come over here, I know it's you without looking. Everything shakes. You're like the tank in Left 4 Dead."

So they called me Tank today. If it sticks, I'm throwing myself down the stairs.

In other news, someone got me a print subscription to Lucky Peach. I think it was [livejournal.com profile] cpratt, who knows and understands my appreciation for cooking wonk, so thanks go to him. I had no idea a magazine could be this rad. David Chang and Anthony Bourdain write for it. Freaking Harold McGee contributes. I am beside myself with anticipatory glee.

It will, of course, fail. All things this awesome die on the magazine stands. Oh well. I'll keep as many as they deem to print, along with my copies of Au Juice, Might, and Shithappy.
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2011-06-14 05:05 pm

Pathfinder

We said goodbye on Sunday. The Pathfinder is gone. It was loyal and reliable to the very end.

Do not grieve. It had a full, adventurous life, and was very much loved.

1990 - 2011.
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2011-06-08 04:53 pm

Laptop

Hey you.

You, with the laptop you're not using. You know, the slightly banged up one that still works? You probably forgot about it sitting in you closet.

I need it for school.

Talk to me.
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2010-10-02 01:04 am

Here Is A Tender, Trembling Life

Somehow I am not surprised to learn that quuf's experiences were so similar to my own. The difference is that I was seven when I took the pearl-handled folding knife from the fireplace mantle and ran into the orchard with it.

My plan was also to stab myself in the belly— fitting, because I not only hated myself for being gay, but for being a fat little boy too. I knelt in the waist-high, yellow grass and stared at the knife in my open hands for what seemed like hours, but ultimately I did not act. Instead I went home, got caught before I could return the knife, and told my mother the truth about what I had done, because I was too young to know any better. I got in heaps of trouble for it.


I've been watching It Gets Better Project videos here and there. I think they're a great idea. It seems that what all of these people in the videos really want to do is hop into time machines and go reassure their younger selves that it's going to be all right. Since they can't do that, they're doing the next best thing. The help they needed back then can at least be given to those who need it now.

I want to take a photograph of John and bring it to my younger self. I want to say: Look at what you get. Seriously, look. Look at who will love you. I know life is tough now. I know it sucks. I remember. But what you must know is that the Neanderthal shit you're putting up with will come to an end, and then your life becomes your own, and then you find your people, and then you get John. Just stick with it. Don't be scared, little bobcat. There's so much beauty in the world, and you get to be a part of it.
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2010-09-24 08:45 pm

Day 30

Day 01. Your favorite song - Peg, Steely Dan
Day 02. Your least favorite song - Takin' Care of Business, Bachman Turner Overdrive
Day 03. A song that makes you happy - Donkey Rhubarb, Aphex Twin
Day 04. A song that makes you sad - This Woman's Work, Kate Bush
Day 05. A song that reminds you of someone - Flakes, Frank Zappa
Day 06. A song that reminds you of somewhere - City of the Angels, Wang Chung
Day 07. A song that reminds you of a certain event - Stick Your Neck Out, Dot 3
Day 08. A song that you know all the words to - I Believe She's Lying, Jon Brion
Day 09. A song that you can dance to - Soft Core, Maurice & the Clichés
Day 10. A song that makes you fall asleep - Thursday Afternoon, Brian Eno
Day 11. A song from your favorite band - You're The Wish You Are I Had, XTC
Day 12. A song from a band you hate - You're Beautiful, James Blunt
Day 13. A song that is a guilty pleasure - Since U Been Gone, Kelly Clarkson
Day 14. A song that no one would expect you to love - Work It, Missy Elliott
Day 15. A song that describes you - Blue Jeans, Blur
Day 16. A song that you used to love but now hate - Just A Gigolo, Barbi and the Kens
Day 17. A song that you heard often on the radio - Cinderella Undercover, Oingo Boingo
Day 18. A song that you wish you heard on the radio - Insecure Sober, sElf
Day 19. A song from your favorite album - New Mistake, Jellyfish
Day 20. A song that you listen to when you’re angry
Day 21. A song that you listen to when you’re happy - Uncontrollable Urge, Devo
Day 22. A song that you listen to when you’re sad
Day 23. A song that you want to play at your wedding
Day 24. A song that you want to play at your funeral
Day 25. A song that makes you laugh - Over 9000 Penises, Oprah Winfrey featuring PEDOBEAR remix
Day 26. A song that you can play on an instrument - Angeles, Elliott Smith
Day 27. A song that you wish you could play - Clap, Steve Howe
Day 28. A song that makes you feel guilty - Funk Pop A Roll, XTC
Day 29. A song from your childhood - Moonshadow, Cat Stevens
Day 30. Your favorite song at this time last year - On The Way Out, Freedy Johnston

I guess? Maybe?

Kind of a dud question to end this with.

Jeb called me last week to let me know that, musically, he had my number.

"You're a Rickenbacker guy," he said. I knew exactly what he meant and it's totally true. I like Beatles-y melodies. You may have noticed. I like jangly guitars and bright production. I want music to yank my head around in unexpected directions. I'll have the dissonance, if you please. Odd chord voicings, and don't bother to sand down their sharp, jagged corners, thank you.

Lyrics. People, people, honestly. Have some pride in your work.

So yeah, Freedy. Another under-rated hero of mine. I discovered him late in the game, after he'd already released five albums. Dan turned me onto Freedy, but I never heard this song while we were together. Turns out that Dan always skipped it when he played the album. Not out of malice. He just didn't like the song. I had to wait until I was a truck driver to discover it. I clearly remember figuring out the lyrics and wailing along with them through New Mexico. It enjoyed a big revival in my life last year.



Runner-Up: Oh, jeez. Um. Okay, a twofer. This Tornado Loves You, and Middle Cyclone, Neko Case





Now that this meme is over, I hope you will excuse me. It's been cutting into my porn time, and I really must catch up now.
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2010-09-23 03:09 pm

Day 29

Day 01. Your favorite song - Peg, Steely Dan
Day 02. Your least favorite song - Takin' Care of Business, Bachman Turner Overdrive
Day 03. A song that makes you happy - Donkey Rhubarb, Aphex Twin
Day 04. A song that makes you sad - This Woman's Work, Kate Bush
Day 05. A song that reminds you of someone - Flakes, Frank Zappa
Day 06. A song that reminds you of somewhere - City of the Angels, Wang Chung
Day 07. A song that reminds you of a certain event - Stick Your Neck Out, Dot 3
Day 08. A song that you know all the words to - I Believe She's Lying, Jon Brion
Day 09. A song that you can dance to - Soft Core, Maurice & the Clichés
Day 10. A song that makes you fall asleep - Thursday Afternoon, Brian Eno
Day 11. A song from your favorite band - You're The Wish You Are I Had, XTC
Day 12. A song from a band you hate - You're Beautiful, James Blunt
Day 13. A song that is a guilty pleasure - Since U Been Gone, Kelly Clarkson
Day 14. A song that no one would expect you to love - Work It, Missy Elliott
Day 15. A song that describes you - Blue Jeans, Blur
Day 16. A song that you used to love but now hate - Just A Gigolo, Barbi and the Kens
Day 17. A song that you heard often on the radio - Cinderella Undercover, Oingo Boingo
Day 18. A song that you wish you heard on the radio - Insecure Sober, sElf
Day 19. A song from your favorite album - New Mistake, Jellyfish
Day 20. A song that you listen to when you’re angry
Day 21. A song that you listen to when you’re happy - Uncontrollable Urge, Devo
Day 22. A song that you listen to when you’re sad
Day 23. A song that you want to play at your wedding
Day 24. A song that you want to play at your funeral
Day 25. A song that makes you laugh - Over 9000 Penises, Oprah Winfrey featuring PEDOBEAR remix
Day 26. A song that you can play on an instrument - Angeles, Elliott Smith
Day 27. A song that you wish you could play - Clap, Steve Howe
Day 28. A song that makes you feel guilty - Funk Pop A Roll, XTC
Day 29. A song from your childhood - Moonshadow, Cat Stevens
Day 30. Your favorite song at this time last year

This song scared the shit out of me. With each stanza, Stevens introduced a shocking, ghastly mutilation (If I ever lose my mouth, my eyes, my hands, etc,) and its repercussions. As a little kid, I wasn't good at disassociation, so he'd sing about losing his hands, and I'd see his hands forced against a tree stump and hacked off with a bloody machete by the Sudanese militia. He'd mention losing his eyes, and I'd see spider monkeys swarming over his head and chewing his eye sockets out, while he screamed and beat at them with his wrist stumps. Then he'd try to shine a positive light on the horror.

Double amputee? Why, I won't have to work no more!

Blind? Then I won't have to cry!

Awesome, Cat Stevens! Those things wholly compensate for your terrible loss! May I address you as Mister Silver Lining?



Runners-Up: You know what? If it weren't for the internets, we wouldn't have the novelty song anymore. Those died out with the Superbowl Shuffle in the 80s.

rigger: (Default)
2010-09-17 05:18 pm

Day 28

Day 01. Your favorite song - Peg, Steely Dan
Day 02. Your least favorite song - Takin' Care of Business, Bachman Turner Overdrive
Day 03. A song that makes you happy - Donkey Rhubarb, Aphex Twin
Day 04. A song that makes you sad - This Woman's Work, Kate Bush
Day 05. A song that reminds you of someone - Flakes, Frank Zappa
Day 06. A song that reminds you of somewhere - City of the Angels, Wang Chung
Day 07. A song that reminds you of a certain event - Stick Your Neck Out, Dot 3
Day 08. A song that you know all the words to - I Believe She's Lying, Jon Brion
Day 09. A song that you can dance to - Soft Core, Maurice & the Clichés
Day 10. A song that makes you fall asleep - Thursday Afternoon, Brian Eno
Day 11. A song from your favorite band - You're The Wish You Are I Had, XTC
Day 12. A song from a band you hate - You're Beautiful, James Blunt
Day 13. A song that is a guilty pleasure - Since U Been Gone, Kelly Clarkson
Day 14. A song that no one would expect you to love - Work It, Missy Elliott
Day 15. A song that describes you - Blue Jeans, Blur
Day 16. A song that you used to love but now hate - Just A Gigolo, Barbi and the Kens
Day 17. A song that you heard often on the radio - Cinderella Undercover, Oingo Boingo
Day 18. A song that you wish you heard on the radio - Insecure Sober, sElf
Day 19. A song from your favorite album - New Mistake, Jellyfish
Day 20. A song that you listen to when you’re angry
Day 21. A song that you listen to when you’re happy - Uncontrollable Urge, Devo
Day 22. A song that you listen to when you’re sad
Day 23. A song that you want to play at your wedding
Day 24. A song that you want to play at your funeral
Day 25. A song that makes you laugh - Over 9000 Penises, Oprah Winfrey featuring PEDOBEAR remix
Day 26. A song that you can play on an instrument - Angeles, Elliott Smith
Day 27. A song that you wish you could play - Clap, Steve Howe
Day 28. A song that makes you feel guilty - Funk Pop A Roll, XTC
Day 29. A song from your childhood
Day 30. Your favorite song at this time last year

Ultimately I was the one who ruined everything. We weren't a great band, but we had potential. If it had occurred to me to nurture band spirit instead of trying to whip morale into them, then perhaps things would have ended differently, but I had no experience leading a group of musicians, and besides, I figured that band drama was a sign of progress. So I fucked that up. I was difficult. I berated them. I flogged them through band rehearsals. Every time I had a decision to make, I chose the nasty, defensive, killjoy route, and they stuck with it because we all knew that someday we'd be good.

They wanted to play live. After the embarrassment of early gigging, I was having none of it. Not until we achieved the aforementioned "goodness".

"You learn to perform by performing, Matthew," they said.

"You learn to play your instrument by practicing your fucking instrument," I countered wittily.

We wrote our own stuff, but I wanted to play other, better bands' music. I figured that you learned faster by reaching beyond your grasp. Funk Pop A Roll became a yardstick. We recorded it into our little Tascam four-track about six hundred times over the course of a few years. Our early attempts were barely recognizable as music, but subsequent recordings showed improvement. Each one, a little more.

For the 601st recording, I told the band, "Don't stop. Pretend it's live. You screw up, just keep going. I count it off and we go. Ready?"

I counted it off. Don stomped on his effect pedal, and started the opening riff.

Dead, flat strings. Absolutely dry. The pedal was already on, and he had stomped it off. The band, following my directions, bulled into the song without stopping. I was livid. I turned off the tape, yelled at them, called them idiots, made fun of them for not stopping when the recording was so obviously unsalvageable.

Don unslung his guitar and set it in the case. "Fuck this," he said. "I'm gone." More band drama. Only he meant it. Don didn't come back. Then our drummer bailed. Then even Jeff told me that he needed a break.

Months later, I discovered that they had secretly reformed without me, and they got a different name, just like the Ben Folds song. I wanted to get mad at them, but I couldn't do it honestly. I mean really; take the hint, you know?



Runner-Up: Golden Brown, The Stranglers

Another song I pushed them into doing.

rigger: (Default)
2010-09-14 07:00 pm

Absentee Ballots

There's still time to apply for an absentee ballot for the upcoming November midterms. Follow this link, click on your state, and follow the instructions.

Why would I want to vote absentee?

Because it's convenient, so you're more likely to actually do it. Also, you can sit down with your ballot and go over every candidate and initiative carefully (and research everything online,) deciding as you go.

Do it!
rigger: (Default)
2010-09-04 07:52 pm

Day 24

Day 01. Your favorite song - Peg, Steely Dan
Day 02. Your least favorite song - Takin' Care of Business, Bachman Turner Overdrive
Day 03. A song that makes you happy - Donkey Rhubarb, Aphex Twin
Day 04. A song that makes you sad - This Woman's Work, Kate Bush
Day 05. A song that reminds you of someone - Flakes, Frank Zappa
Day 06. A song that reminds you of somewhere - City of the Angels, Wang Chung
Day 07. A song that reminds you of a certain event - Stick Your Neck Out, Dot 3
Day 08. A song that you know all the words to - I Believe She's Lying, Jon Brion
Day 09. A song that you can dance to - Soft Core, Maurice & the Clichés
Day 10. A song that makes you fall asleep - Thursday Afternoon, Brian Eno
Day 11. A song from your favorite band - You're The Wish You Are I Had, XTC
Day 12. A song from a band you hate - You're Beautiful, James Blunt
Day 13. A song that is a guilty pleasure - Since U Been Gone, Kelly Clarkson
Day 14. A song that no one would expect you to love - Work It, Missy Elliott
Day 15. A song that describes you - Blue Jeans, Blur
Day 16. A song that you used to love but now hate - Just A Gigolo, Barbi and the Kens
Day 17. A song that you heard often on the radio - Cinderella Undercover, Oingo Boingo
Day 18. A song that you wish you heard on the radio - Insecure Sober, sElf
Day 19. A song from your favorite album - New Mistake, Jellyfish
Day 20. A song that you listen to when you’re angry
Day 21. A song that you listen to when you’re happy - Uncontrollable Urge, Devo
Day 22. A song that you listen to when you’re sad
Day 23. A song that you want to play at your wedding
Day 24. A song that you want to play at your funeral
Day 25. A song that makes you laugh
Day 26. A song that you can play on an instrument
Day 27. A song that you wish you could play
Day 28. A song that makes you feel guilty
Day 29. A song from your childhood
Day 30. Your favorite song at this time last year

It's not up to me. I won't notice and I won't complain, so play what you want.

On the other hand, I used to entertain fantasies of orchestrating a funeral so painful and awkward that my friends would be glad I was dead. I would videotape a deathbed monologue in which I stare at the camera and recite squirmy racist jokes from a page in slow, labored monotone. I would hire improv actors to approach mourners and chat them up, only to stutter lamely and then lapse into uncomfortable silence. I would pay a musician to perform Casio swing tunes as The Fabulous Donny Mavis. Basically I wouldn't be satisfied unless my corpse was sodomized, or otherwise defiled before interment*.

But I actually sort of like my friends. And there's the whole John thing to consider. I should leave it up to you.

Runner-Up: The Goodbye Look, Mel Torme



*By the way, I've talked about this with friends, but I want to make my wishes clear. When I die, I don't want to be cremated or buried. I'm donating my body to science. As I filled out my drivers' license paperwork, I hesitated when I saw that I could donate my whole body. That seemed a bit creepy to me. But then I imagined a sad group of anatomy students being afflicted with my completely unmanageable, nightmare corpse, and I couldn't sign that card fast enough.
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2010-09-03 04:39 am

Day 23

Day 01. Your favorite song - Peg, Steely Dan
Day 02. Your least favorite song - Takin' Care of Business, Bachman Turner Overdrive
Day 03. A song that makes you happy - Donkey Rhubarb, Aphex Twin
Day 04. A song that makes you sad - This Woman's Work, Kate Bush
Day 05. A song that reminds you of someone - Flakes, Frank Zappa
Day 06. A song that reminds you of somewhere - City of the Angels, Wang Chung
Day 07. A song that reminds you of a certain event - Stick Your Neck Out, Dot 3
Day 08. A song that you know all the words to - I Believe She's Lying, Jon Brion
Day 09. A song that you can dance to - Soft Core, Maurice & the Clichés
Day 10. A song that makes you fall asleep - Thursday Afternoon, Brian Eno
Day 11. A song from your favorite band - You're The Wish You Are I Had, XTC
Day 12. A song from a band you hate - You're Beautiful, James Blunt
Day 13. A song that is a guilty pleasure - Since U Been Gone, Kelly Clarkson
Day 14. A song that no one would expect you to love - Work It, Missy Elliott
Day 15. A song that describes you - Blue Jeans, Blur
Day 16. A song that you used to love but now hate - Just A Gigolo, Barbi and the Kens
Day 17. A song that you heard often on the radio - Cinderella Undercover, Oingo Boingo
Day 18. A song that you wish you heard on the radio - Insecure Sober, sElf
Day 19. A song from your favorite album - New Mistake, Jellyfish
Day 20. A song that you listen to when you’re angry
Day 21. A song that you listen to when you’re happy - Uncontrollable Urge, Devo
Day 22. A song that you listen to when you’re sad
Day 23. A song that you want to play at your wedding
Day 24. A song that you want to play at your funeral
Day 25. A song that makes you laugh
Day 26. A song that you can play on an instrument
Day 27. A song that you wish you could play
Day 28. A song that makes you feel guilty
Day 29. A song from your childhood
Day 30. Your favorite song at this time last year

I was going to say something about how I've never had to think about it, since marriage is off the table for me. This is a question for teenage girls who make up their minds early about how their Barbie Dream Wedding is going to be, and then they NEVER DEVIATE FROM THE PLAN. And if the wedding/marriage doesn't go exactly as charted, you can count on a spectacular meltdown, followed by years of therapy, further failed relationships, and perhaps life-long doorknob tapping and counting.

But the truth is that John and I hate hate hate ceremony. If we ever get married, it'll be a quick drive to city hall, maybe we'll know the witness, maybe not, sloppy signatures, in and out, done. Honestly, if we could click an internet "Married" button, we'd do that.

Fine. Bone Machine, Pixies



Runner-Up: Heroes, David Bowie & Philip Glass (Aphex Twin remix)

For the processional.

rigger: (Default)
2010-09-02 04:37 am

Day 22

Day 01. Your favorite song - Peg, Steely Dan
Day 02. Your least favorite song - Takin' Care of Business, Bachman Turner Overdrive
Day 03. A song that makes you happy - Donkey Rhubarb, Aphex Twin
Day 04. A song that makes you sad - This Woman's Work, Kate Bush
Day 05. A song that reminds you of someone - Flakes, Frank Zappa
Day 06. A song that reminds you of somewhere - City of the Angels, Wang Chung
Day 07. A song that reminds you of a certain event - Stick Your Neck Out, Dot 3
Day 08. A song that you know all the words to - I Believe She's Lying, Jon Brion
Day 09. A song that you can dance to - Soft Core, Maurice & the Clichés
Day 10. A song that makes you fall asleep - Thursday Afternoon, Brian Eno
Day 11. A song from your favorite band - You're The Wish You Are I Had, XTC
Day 12. A song from a band you hate - You're Beautiful, James Blunt
Day 13. A song that is a guilty pleasure - Since U Been Gone, Kelly Clarkson
Day 14. A song that no one would expect you to love - Work It, Missy Elliott
Day 15. A song that describes you - Blue Jeans, Blur
Day 16. A song that you used to love but now hate - Just A Gigolo, Barbi and the Kens
Day 17. A song that you heard often on the radio - Cinderella Undercover, Oingo Boingo
Day 18. A song that you wish you heard on the radio - Insecure Sober, sElf
Day 19. A song from your favorite album - New Mistake, Jellyfish
Day 20. A song that you listen to when you’re angry
Day 21. A song that you listen to when you’re happy - Uncontrollable Urge, Devo
Day 22. A song that you listen to when you’re sad
Day 23. A song that you want to play at your wedding
Day 24. A song that you want to play at your funeral
Day 25. A song that makes you laugh
Day 26. A song that you can play on an instrument
Day 27. A song that you wish you could play
Day 28. A song that makes you feel guilty
Day 29. A song from your childhood
Day 30. Your favorite song at this time last year

I guess I don't like to connect the music that I love to anything negative, so I tend not to do this either. Tend.

I got the crap fired out of me once. It was a job I hated, duplicating video tapes during the night shift, and I was a total irresponsible fuck-up. Hating the job didn't make the firing any easier though. My manager, in fact, really enjoyed firing me, and she made that fact plain.

As a result of being fired, I lost my apartment. While I packed all my belongings into boxes, wallowing in my across-the-board failure, I tried listening to an Elvis Costello album.

Hey, you know what? When you're packing up your apartment after losing your job, don't listen to Elvis Costello. That shit stings like Bactine.



Runner-Up: Nope. Learned my lesson.
rigger: (Default)
2010-09-02 04:11 am

Day 19

Day 01. Your favorite song - Peg, Steely Dan
Day 02. Your least favorite song - Takin' Care of Business, Bachman Turner Overdrive
Day 03. A song that makes you happy - Donkey Rhubarb, Aphex Twin
Day 04. A song that makes you sad - This Woman's Work, Kate Bush
Day 05. A song that reminds you of someone - Flakes, Frank Zappa
Day 06. A song that reminds you of somewhere - City of the Angels, Wang Chung
Day 07. A song that reminds you of a certain event - Stick Your Neck Out, Dot 3
Day 08. A song that you know all the words to - I Believe She's Lying, Jon Brion
Day 09. A song that you can dance to - Soft Core, Maurice & the Clichés
Day 10. A song that makes you fall asleep - Thursday Afternoon, Brian Eno
Day 11. A song from your favorite band - You're The Wish You Are I Had, XTC
Day 12. A song from a band you hate - You're Beautiful, James Blunt
Day 13. A song that is a guilty pleasure - Since U Been Gone, Kelly Clarkson
Day 14. A song that no one would expect you to love - Work It, Missy Elliott
Day 15. A song that describes you - Blue Jeans, Blur
Day 16. A song that you used to love but now hate - Just A Gigolo, Barbi and the Kens
Day 17. A song that you heard often on the radio - Cinderella Undercover, Oingo Boingo
Day 18. A song that you wish you heard on the radio - Insecure Sober, sElf
Day 19. A song from your favorite album - New Mistake, Jellyfish
Day 20. A song that you listen to when you’re angry
Day 21. A song that you listen to when you’re happy
Day 22. A song that you listen to when you’re sad
Day 23. A song that you want to play at your wedding
Day 24. A song that you want to play at your funeral
Day 25. A song that makes you laugh
Day 26. A song that you can play on an instrument
Day 27. A song that you wish you could play
Day 28. A song that makes you feel guilty
Day 29. A song from your childhood
Day 30. Your favorite song at this time last year

We all ponied up. I forget who had that Tuesday off. It was probably Niki; she had the wonkiest schedule. Whoever it was, she waited outside Tower Records in San José, pacing between the palms out front with a small crowd of equally obsessive fans, until they opened their doors and sold her a dozen copies of Spilt Milk, one for each of us.

I wanted to be Andy Sturmer so hard. But I could never pull off horizontal stripes.



Runner-Up: All Is Forgiven, Jellyfish

rigger: (Default)
2010-09-01 02:33 am

Day 15

Day 01. Your favorite song - Peg, Steely Dan
Day 02. Your least favorite song - Takin' Care of Business, Bachman Turner Overdrive
Day 03. A song that makes you happy - Donkey Rhubarb, Aphex Twin
Day 04. A song that makes you sad - This Woman's Work, Kate Bush
Day 05. A song that reminds you of someone - Flakes, Frank Zappa
Day 06. A song that reminds you of somewhere - City of the Angels, Wang Chung
Day 07. A song that reminds you of a certain event - Stick Your Neck Out, Dot 3
Day 08. A song that you know all the words to - I Believe She's Lying, Jon Brion
Day 09. A song that you can dance to - Soft Core, Maurice & the Clichés
Day 10. A song that makes you fall asleep - Thursday Afternoon, Brian Eno
Day 11. A song from your favorite band - You're The Wish You Are I Had, XTC
Day 12. A song from a band you hate - You're Beautiful, James Blunt
Day 13. A song that is a guilty pleasure - Since U Been Gone, Kelly Clarkson
Day 14. A song that no one would expect you to love - Work It, Missy Elliott
Day 15. A song that describes you - Blue Jeans, Blur
Day 16. A song that you used to love but now hate
Day 17. A song that you hear often on the radio
Day 18. A song that you wish you heard on the radio
Day 19. A song from your favorite album
Day 20. A song that you listen to when you’re angry
Day 21. A song that you listen to when you’re happy
Day 22. A song that you listen to when you’re sad
Day 23. A song that you want to play at your wedding
Day 24. A song that you want to play at your funeral
Day 25. A song that makes you laugh
Day 26. A song that you can play on an instrument
Day 27. A song that you wish you could play
Day 28. A song that makes you feel guilty
Day 29. A song from your childhood
Day 30. Your favorite song at this time last year

By the time I head off to bed, John has already been asleep for hours. I try to be sneaky. I leave the lights off and float through the bedroom slowly with my arms outstretched. I look a fool, but if I bonk into anything or stub my toe, I'll cuss out loud and wake him up. Don't want that. So I'm careful.

When I slip into bed, I do it quietly, and then I follow John's lead. If he reaches over and rubs my bald head, which I love, then I get to hug him from behind and say nice things to him for a while. If he doesn't move, or if he turns away from me, then the message is clear. Sleep now.

A few nights ago, I climbed into bed, and John didn't move. I lay still for a moment, watching his back and shoulders rise and fall, listening to his breathing. No change. Never change. Soft burr, soft burr. Sleepy bear. Warm under his blankets.

I'm so happy now. I want everything to stay the same. Isn't that naive? I know that I can't have it. That's doomed thinking. But hoping is different, isn't it?

I wanted to wake John up. I always do. Instead, because I knew he was asleep and wouldn't hear me, I whispered to him, "Live forever."

In the darkness, he whispered back: Okay.



Runner-Up: Getting Better, The Beatles

rigger: (Default)
2010-09-01 01:56 am

Day 14

Day 01. Your favorite song - Peg, Steely Dan
Day 02. Your least favorite song - Takin' Care of Business, Bachman Turner Overdrive
Day 03. A song that makes you happy - Donkey Rhubarb, Aphex Twin
Day 04. A song that makes you sad - This Woman's Work, Kate Bush
Day 05. A song that reminds you of someone - Flakes, Frank Zappa
Day 06. A song that reminds you of somewhere - City of the Angels, Wang Chung
Day 07. A song that reminds you of a certain event - Stick Your Neck Out, Dot 3
Day 08. A song that you know all the words to - I Believe She's Lying, Jon Brion
Day 09. A song that you can dance to - Soft Core, Maurice & the Clichés
Day 10. A song that makes you fall asleep - Thursday Afternoon, Brian Eno
Day 11. A song from your favorite band - You're The Wish You Are I Had, XTC
Day 12. A song from a band you hate - You're Beautiful, James Blunt
Day 13. A song that is a guilty pleasure - Since U Been Gone, Kelly Clarkson
Day 14. A song that no one would expect you to love - Work It, Missy Elliott
Day 15. A song that describes you
Day 16. A song that you used to love but now hate
Day 17. A song that you hear often on the radio
Day 18. A song that you wish you heard on the radio
Day 19. A song from your favorite album
Day 20. A song that you listen to when you’re angry
Day 21. A song that you listen to when you’re happy
Day 22. A song that you listen to when you’re sad
Day 23. A song that you want to play at your wedding
Day 24. A song that you want to play at your funeral
Day 25. A song that makes you laugh
Day 26. A song that you can play on an instrument
Day 27. A song that you wish you could play
Day 28. A song that makes you feel guilty
Day 29. A song from your childhood
Day 30. Your favorite song at this time last year

Missy is my girl. I've loved her since I saw her video for The Rain [Supa Dupa Fly], which immediately impressed me with her inventiveness, resourcefulness, and the fact that she has a freakin' sense of humor— which I think has been lacking in hip hop for years and years.



Runner-Up: Fool In The Rain, Led Zeppelin

"But, dude! In Through The Out Door? That's when Zep sold out! Even Brock Sampson said so."

No, In Through The Out Door was when a group of musicians got bored with hackwork-loving mongoloids raising their lighters during Stairway, and decided to try new things. It's called musical growth. Look into it, you crybaby dirtheads.

rigger: (Default)
2010-09-01 12:08 am

Day 13

Day 01. Your favorite song - Peg, Steely Dan
Day 02. Your least favorite song - Takin' Care of Business, Bachman Turner Overdrive
Day 03. A song that makes you happy - Donkey Rhubarb, Aphex Twin
Day 04. A song that makes you sad - This Woman's Work, Kate Bush
Day 05. A song that reminds you of someone - Flakes, Frank Zappa
Day 06. A song that reminds you of somewhere - City of the Angels, Wang Chung
Day 07. A song that reminds you of a certain event - Stick Your Neck Out, Dot 3
Day 08. A song that you know all the words to - I Believe She's Lying, Jon Brion
Day 09. A song that you can dance to - Soft Core, Maurice & the Clichés
Day 10. A song that makes you fall asleep - Thursday Afternoon, Brian Eno
Day 11. A song from your favorite band - You're The Wish You Are I Had, XTC
Day 12. A song from a band you hate - You're Beautiful, James Blunt
Day 13. A song that is a guilty pleasure - Since U Been Gone, Kelly Clarkson
Day 14. A song that no one would expect you to love
Day 15. A song that describes you
Day 16. A song that you used to love but now hate
Day 17. A song that you hear often on the radio
Day 18. A song that you wish you heard on the radio
Day 19. A song from your favorite album
Day 20. A song that you listen to when you’re angry
Day 21. A song that you listen to when you’re happy
Day 22. A song that you listen to when you’re sad
Day 23. A song that you want to play at your wedding
Day 24. A song that you want to play at your funeral
Day 25. A song that makes you laugh
Day 26. A song that you can play on an instrument
Day 27. A song that you wish you could play
Day 28. A song that makes you feel guilty
Day 29. A song from your childhood
Day 30. Your favorite song at this time last year

I can't help it. Don't judge.



Runner-Up: Cooking by the Book (A Lil' Bigger Mix), Mastgrr

rigger: (Default)
2010-08-31 11:49 pm

Day 12

Day 01. Your favorite song - Peg, Steely Dan
Day 02. Your least favorite song - Takin' Care of Business, Bachman Turner Overdrive
Day 03. A song that makes you happy - Donkey Rhubarb, Aphex Twin
Day 04. A song that makes you sad - This Woman's Work, Kate Bush
Day 05. A song that reminds you of someone - Flakes, Frank Zappa
Day 06. A song that reminds you of somewhere - City of the Angels, Wang Chung
Day 07. A song that reminds you of a certain event - Stick Your Neck Out, Dot 3
Day 08. A song that you know all the words to - I Believe She's Lying, Jon Brion
Day 09. A song that you can dance to - Soft Core, Maurice & the Clichés
Day 10. A song that makes you fall asleep - Thursday Afternoon, Brian Eno
Day 11. A song from your favorite band - You're The Wish You Are I Had, XTC
Day 12. A song from a band you hate - You're Beautiful, James Blunt
Day 13. A song that is a guilty pleasure
Day 14. A song that no one would expect you to love
Day 15. A song that describes you
Day 16. A song that you used to love but now hate
Day 17. A song that you hear often on the radio
Day 18. A song that you wish you heard on the radio
Day 19. A song from your favorite album
Day 20. A song that you listen to when you’re angry
Day 21. A song that you listen to when you’re happy
Day 22. A song that you listen to when you’re sad
Day 23. A song that you want to play at your wedding
Day 24. A song that you want to play at your funeral
Day 25. A song that makes you laugh
Day 26. A song that you can play on an instrument
Day 27. A song that you wish you could play
Day 28. A song that makes you feel guilty
Day 29. A song from your childhood
Day 30. Your favorite song at this time last year

Let's see. Which puppy shall I put the boot to?

This is not my most-hated song (which is still Takin' Care of Business) only because it's clear that— silly vocal affectation aside— James Blunt is trying. It's just his misfortune that he is talentless and retarded, and that his songs make no internal lyrical sense.

she smiled at me on the subway
she was with another man
but I won't lose no sleep on that
'cause I've got a plan


Ooo! Mr. Blunt has a plan! Let us follow these tipping dominoes to their conclusion.

I saw your face in a crowded place
and I don't know what to do
'cause I'll never be with you


Well! That's your kick-ass love plan, tiger? "I don't know what to do"? O, her poor, unsuspecting heart! She won't stand a chance against your ardent machinations.

Further along, we hear:

there must be an angel with a smile on her face
when she thought up that I should be with you


Look, I'll make allowances if lyrics scan. I don't expect Sondheim from everyone, and if I can overlook McCartney's "But if this ever-changing world in which we live in... " and Kate Bush's "She couldn't have made a worst move", then I can look the other way for poor James.

But they don't. It's rhythmic chowder. He barges through the line in an awkward rush to cram it all in. He almost speaks it.

So I guess I'm saying that James Blunt must die.



Runner-Up: Wonderwall, Oasis.

rigger: (Default)
2010-08-31 11:45 pm

Day 11

Day 01. Your favorite song - Peg, Steely Dan
Day 02. Your least favorite song - Takin' Care of Business, Bachman Turner Overdrive
Day 03. A song that makes you happy - Donkey Rhubarb, Aphex Twin
Day 04. A song that makes you sad - This Woman's Work, Kate Bush
Day 05. A song that reminds you of someone - Flakes, Frank Zappa
Day 06. A song that reminds you of somewhere - City of the Angels, Wang Chung
Day 07. A song that reminds you of a certain event - Stick Your Neck Out, Dot 3
Day 08. A song that you know all the words to - I Believe She's Lying, Jon Brion
Day 09. A song that you can dance to - Soft Core, Maurice & the Clichés
Day 10. A song that makes you fall asleep - Thursday Afternoon, Brian Eno
Day 11. A song from your favorite band - You're The Wish You Are I Had, XTC
Day 12. A song from a band you hate
Day 13. A song that is a guilty pleasure
Day 14. A song that no one would expect you to love
Day 15. A song that describes you
Day 16. A song that you used to love but now hate
Day 17. A song that you hear often on the radio
Day 18. A song that you wish you heard on the radio
Day 19. A song from your favorite album
Day 20. A song that you listen to when you’re angry
Day 21. A song that you listen to when you’re happy
Day 22. A song that you listen to when you’re sad
Day 23. A song that you want to play at your wedding
Day 24. A song that you want to play at your funeral
Day 25. A song that makes you laugh
Day 26. A song that you can play on an instrument
Day 27. A song that you wish you could play
Day 28. A song that makes you feel guilty
Day 29. A song from your childhood
Day 30. Your favorite song at this time last year

XTC (along with The Beatles, Devo, Laurie Anderson, and Aphex Twin) were a band that CHANGED FUCKING EVERYTHING for me.

I know, I know. They're hardly a landmark band. They've always been very open about the music they love, and if you pay attention, you hear their influences clearly. But unlike a lot of bands, XTC were never content to emulate their heroes. They wanted to improve upon what they heard. Andy Partridge himself said, "You've got to feel that you've beaten your heroes. You have to— you have to kill them all, and stand on a giant heap of all your influences." So all the music they loved— Lennon & McCartney, Brian Wilson, Sun Ra, Pink Floyd, Captain Beefheart, Brecht and Weill— it all got pushed and mangled through their idiosyncratic musical machinery, and came out the other end gloriously changed. That's how it works.

Everything XTC did was a revelation to me. They integrated musical neighborhoods, sunk new cable, peeled dumb, dogmatic pages out of their rulebook, drew back curtains, let new air and light in.

They redefined music. I'm still dealing with it. I never really got over XTC.



Runner-Up: Mermaid Smiled, XTC