Thursday, June 30, 2005

post 64. war of the worlds.

it's nice to know that, in the event of a hostile alien attack, we'll be killed by either the aforementioned aliens or mob rule.

Monday, June 27, 2005

post 63. for july.

1. sleater-kinney, "modern girl."
2. white stripes, "blue orchid."
3. royksopp, "triumphant."
4. common, "the light."
5. the cure, "the hanging garden."
6. ride, "dreams burn down."
7. iggy & the stooges, "search and destroy."
8. missy elliott, "can't stop."
9. decemberists, "like a lion."
10. smashing pumpkins, "mayonnaise."
11. moussa doumbia, "keleya."
12. tears for fears, "everybody wants to rule the world."
13. michael franti & spearhead, "never too late."
14. pelican, "sirius."

post 62. new hampshire's all right, if you like fighting.

link. Posted by Hello

Sunday, June 26, 2005

post 61. the adventure of the blue-pawed mountain tomcats, part XXV.

driving over the barricades with a crash i heard annis let fly a few more rounds into the night behind us. there was no return fire, there was no sound of heavily-armed helicopters and their barrages anymore, there was no more whine of machine gun-toting motorbikes; just the wind whipping through all the new holes and broken windows of the caravan we "acquired" from general taupe. i pictured him in his home, still sleeping, unaware that his minivan had been stolen, his pool had been evaporated, and i was wearing one of his pastel-slathered bathing suits while annis wore one of his wife's ill-fitting and entirely 1967 bikinis. * "are we good?" annis asked. i glanced up in the rearview mirror and saw her still hanging over the half-destroyed back seat. * "you're the one still shooting," i replied, "you tell me. how are the guests?" * i turned on the overheard light and heard her move the tomcats' cage around. "they...ah shit," she replied. "looks like...looks like we lost one." * there was nothing but the sound of the wind rushing through the perforated minivan for a while. i turned the light off and shifted gazes out the window to the left to look at the mountains and the windshield to see the moon slowly rising in front of us. annis' outline was in the rearview mirror and she sat dejectedly, her hair flying around in the wind. we drove for fifteen minutes and she came up front, slapped her pistol on the dashboard and opened the glovebox. "let's see if mrs. general taupe has a hair tie," she said, and began rooting through it. "hellooo," she said, and pulled out a small black box. "what's this?" she opened it and it was a card holder, keeping about ten cards vertically in a piece of black foam. "these are all...these are all security cards..." * "anything we need?" i asked. * "lemme...see...holy shit," she said, and turned on the reading light. "this is a black dennis card." * "what's that do?" i asked. * there was a moment before she answered. "we have to turn around," she said. "we need to go back to the base. to general taupe's house."

Friday, June 24, 2005

post 60. desert island albums.

last night, as i watched my reverend horton heat dvd, i was suddenly overcome with the urge to write down albums i would take with me to a desert island. but i gave myself only five minutes to do so, in order to make it less of an internal debate while also a bit gutsier. and, i figured, five minutes would represent the amount of time i would have in the hypothetical event that i was on a huge ocean liner with my entire cd collection. in the middle of a nautical disaster. while being close to a deserted island that had either electricity or lots of batteries. and, i would hope, lots of beautiful women in bikinis. so. in no particular order:

reverend horton heat, SMOKE 'EM IF YOU GOT 'EM.
nine inch nails, WITH TEETH.
living colour, TIME'S UP.
dj shadow, ENDTRODUCING.
the monkees, BEST OF.
mr. bungle, CALIFORNIA.
prince, PURPLE RAIN.
pink floyd, MEDDLE.
urban dance squad, MENTAL FLOSS FOR THE GLOBE.

post 59. doodle number 1.

taking time out to flex my drawing muscles while writing my new play. (a page of which is on the flip side of this page) Posted by Hello

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

post 56. my new favorite band.

The anthemic Olympia, WA-based punk trio Sleater-Kinney formed from the ashes of Heavens to Betsy and Excuse 17, a pair of groups that rode the first wave of the riot grrrl movement. Singer/guitarists Corin Tucker and Carrie Brownstein first met in 1992, when Tucker was one half of the duo Heavens to Betsy; Brownstein, a classically trained pianist, was so inspired by Tucker and other grrrl musicians like Bikini Kill and Bratmobile (not coincidentally Tucker's own influences) that she formed her own band, Excuse 17, a year later. Sleater-Kinney, which earned its name from a local freeway off-ramp, initially began as Tucker and Brownstein's side project; in late 1994, Australia-born Lora MacFarlane signed on as the group's first permanent drummer, and over the course of the following two weeks, the trio recorded its self-titled 1995 debut for Team Dresch bassist Donna Dresch's Chainsaw label. Upon its release, the album earned widespread acclaim for its visceral intensity as well as the group's provocative, politically charged lyrics, passionate vocals, and intricate melodies. With 1996's brilliant Call the Doctor, Sleater-Kinney garnered even greater media exposure and critical applause on the strength of their incisive rants against gender inequity, consumerism, and indie rock's male-dominated hierarchy. Their Kill Rock Stars label debut, Dig Me Out, recorded with new drummer Janet Weiss from Quasi, followed in 1997, and was again among the most acclaimed releases of its season; The Hot Rock appeared two years later, and in the spring of 2000, Sleater-Kinney resurfaced with All Hands on the Bad One. In August of 2002 the group returned with its most musically accomplished record yet, One Beat. Sleater-Kinney upped the ante again with 2005's powerful, inventive The Woods, which was released by Sub Pop, was produced by Dave Fridmann, and was inspired by, among other things, the political climate of the mid-2000s and the freedom of the improvised parts of their gigs supporting Pearl Jam on their 2003 tour. Posted by Hello

Sunday, June 12, 2005

post 54. from bill bryson's a short history of nearly everything.

this is an audio post - click to play

post 53. drink requests i've overheard at starbucks.

i'm usually chided by those closest to me for being judgemental, but after hearing david mccullough on npr the other day talking about how tough the first americans were and how pampered and soft we've become, i can't help but write about starbucks. * not that i have a problem with starbucks. i work at record archive, an independent record store; starbucks is right next door, so it's pretty convenient. in order to further illustrate my record store's position of not really worrying too much about this corporate monster sitting so close to us, we don't even care that they sell amos lee cds for five cents less than us, or that they're really pushing antigone rising. the people that buy amos lee and antigone rising go to starbucks and best buy; the people that want the new destrux 7" or the decemberists come to us. * but i'm getting away from my point. i love hearing the things people ask for when ordering drinks, and with david mccullough in mind, i figured i'll start logging the best requests here. * by the way, i usually get a grande iced coffee, extra sweet.

drink requests i've overheard at starbucks.
1) the lady last week who wanted to be sure that they weren't using tap water when making her drink.
2) the guy who just couldn't fathom how this starbucks was the only starbucks in the country (his words) that didn't have the particular flavor he was looking for.

Friday, June 10, 2005

post 51. the florist.

“come inside,” the little man said, and i followed him into the smallish cottage, where it smelled of flowers. he had an entire garden in his front room. after i commented on the strange display instead of regular interior design, he let out a small chuckle. “oh, this is nothing,” he said, as he strolled through his living room garden. there were azaleas, hyacinths, butterscotch roses, forget-me nots, olivias, destartocides, and even the long-forgotten butterfly marigolds. there were more colours than i had names for, and they all swam together in a lush display. * “this is just what i like to show the guests…if you’d follow me,” he said, and we walked down a hall. there was a golden retriever lying to one side at the entrance and he watched me unconcernedly. we stopped at a door and he pushed it open to reveal another display of plants, these mostly green—a forest posing as a guest room. a bed, a dresser, a few gardening books placed carefully on the bedside table with an antique-looking lamp. * “this is the guest room,” he said, and he pointed out a few variations, names i couldn’t fathom, from places i had never heard of. * the next room was all banzai trees; then a room of other trees—a room in which he had cut a hole in the ceiling—where birds chirped and the light rain ran off via grates in the floor. the next room was a lush carpet of grass and a bunch of yellow flowers lining the room’s perimeter. * “these are all fine, but …” i said carefully, as I looked at my watch. * “yes, yes,” he said, “you’re very impatient for a g-man,” and he took me to the room at the end of the hall. “here we are,” he said and he opened the door to a white room, with nothing in it save for a solitary red clay pot and its charge, an orchid. the room was lit with high-priced hydroponics lights. * “this,” he said, carefully picking up the potted plant, “is the orchid of truth. poisonous in the wrong light, and a powerful agent under others.” it shivered in the room’s delicate air conditioning. * “this is amazing,” i said. “but I can’t help but wonder…why are you letting me borrow it?” * “my wife loved orchids,” he said, and those people destroyed her, much like they’re trying to destroy you now.” he handed the pot to me. “don’t let this plant go to waste in your quest.” * “i won’t, sir.” we walked back into the living room, and the dog got up and followed us in a lazy manner. “if i may, though,” i said, “i have one more favor.” i put the plant down on a table. “they’ll be looking for me. i need some new clothes. got anything I could borrow?” * “i have just the thing,” he said, waving me back into the hallway towards a door we hadn’t opened yet.

post 50. out at mendon ponds.

 Posted by Hello

 Posted by Hello

Sunday, June 05, 2005

post 49. pornography.

Later hailed as one of the key goth rock albums of the '80s and considered by many hardcore Cure fans to be the band's best album, Pornography was largely dismissed upon its 1982 release, witheringly reviewed as a leaden slab of whining and moping. The truth, as usual, is somewhere in between: Pornography is much better than most mainstream critics of the time thought, but in retrospect, it's not the masterpiece some fans have claimed it to be. The overall sound is thick and murky, but too muddy to be effectively atmospheric in the way that the more dynamic Disintegration managed a few years later. For every powerful track like the doomy opener "One Hundred Years" and the clattering, desolate single "The Hanging Garden," there's a sound-over-substance piece of filler like "The Figurehead," which sounds suitably bleak but doesn't have the musical or emotional heft this sort of music requires. Pornography is an often intriguing listen, but it's just a bit too uneven to be considered a classic.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

post 48. incident at jackal island.

with fourteen guards behind me and general tip to my right, we buzzed along pilobilous lake and looked at the ominous figure of jackal island ahead of us. we skimmed along in a tight formation on our hover boards as the lake sprayed behind us. * every now and then general tip would take the lead and try to scope things out, as any good military leader would, but there was no sign of anything except that blasted island: no smoke from our downed vessel, no signs of distress, just a green mass with a few peaks that rose angrily into the sky, as if this mountain island were thrust angrily into this placid lake to show that earth would some day make everything ugly. * we arrived at the beach and my guards spread out around me, but i shook them off and kept them behind me while i strode out on the white sand and surveyed the jungle in front of us. * general tip: “this is not the best idea, sir. i still think you should at least stay here with martinez and sandalwood while the rest of us commit to the search.” * “my wife,” i said, “is here somewhere, and i don’t care what’s on this island, real or imagined. i’m going to find her.” * general tip: “your courage is, as always, something to applaud sir, but you’re letting it cloud your judgment.” i ignored him and walked through the green curtain into the jungle that rimmed the beach, into the jungle that housed the exotic animals that were once written about but forgotten since the island was overrun by the strange forces which seemed to bastardize its beauty. * we picked our way though the vegetation and swatted flies and the guards took off their jackets and tied them around their waists, guns at the ready. then sanderson was attacked by something that swooped through the trees and precipitated a mad spray of ammunition into the thick green landscape. chaos and superstition set in and we were all soon running back to the beach, but not before two more guards were stolen by the jungle. * “all right, here’s the deal,” i said, gasping for air. “keep to the beach. we’ll circle the island, making camp halfway around tonight, then finish tomorrow. if we cannot find any sign of the ship, we’ll head into the jungle.” the guards, some of them bent and heaving from the run, looked forlorningly into the sweaty mass of jungle. * general tip: “these men are only guards. guards in a court that has had peace for too long, sir. they aren’t trained for this.” he pulled me further from earshot. “we should have brought troops, sir.” * “and get the public nervous?” i replied. “the superstitions about this island are going to be put to rest, tip." * general tip: “but these men just saw three of their own killed. and we don’t even know what by. we…” he was cut off by a noise from deep in the jungle. birds suddenly silenced and the trees stood unnervingly still. my stomach lurched, and the guards all pointed their guns blindly towards the innards of the island. general tip pulled out his gun. * from the jungle came the mechanical howl and grudge of a slow-moving machine that sounded as if it were chewing the very island itself. and along side that were angry protestations, as if someone were leading the machine towards battle. but the voice – it…it couldn’t be, i thought… * the guard to my right: “what is that?” * “that,” i said, mostly to myself, “sounds like my wife.”