There was a time when it was impossible to be sassy AND classy. And then there was saucy.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Teh News

I present you with two of the three latest headlines the Firefox BBC Live Bookmark has to offer:

Stop the digital presses (especially the 93% that are not blind person-friendly)! You expect me to believe that the good ole' US of A isn't kicking ass and taking names and that there is some sort of consolidation of wealth? Where the fuck have I been? In other news, Generalissimo Francisco Franco is still dead.

Sorry for all of the links, but thats just the way that it goes sometimes.

keep us from saying anything

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Boredom on a Tuesday Evening

I really wanted to write a review of Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg today, but I can't do that for two reasons: I haven't finished the book yet and I don't write everyday like she tells me to. Instead of writing, I tend to listen to Mondo Movie podcasts or my iTunes and play Mah-Jong. I was doing just this earlier while jamming out to some Streetlight Manifesto when a particular lryic caught my attention. Without further ado, here are the tracks from Everything Goes Numb accompanied by my favorite bit of lyrics from each song:

  1. Everything Went Numb - "but himself ain't a lot when he's got nothing left/of what was once a man, loved and loving/he took that trip that turns something to nothing"
  2. That'll Be The Day - "you brag of your indecency like a monkey beats his chest"
  3. Point/Counterpoint - "if ever I let you down I want to ask of you/to take it down a notch and we can talk it on through"
  4. If And When We Rise Again - "don't you come to me with all your color-coded quotes/everybody's laughing but they never ever get my jokes"
  5. A Better Place, A Better Time - "this loneliness is killing me/its filling me with anger and resentment/resentment Annie says/i'm turning into someone that i never that i'd have to be again"
  6. We Are The Few - "so come clean/no one should have to live with the things you've seen/but you're livin' anyways"
  7. Failing, Flailing - "and you act like it is but you know that its not/and even if it was would you ever give it up/if i told you what you had was really nothing"
  8. Here's To Life - "hey there Salinger what did you do/just when the world was looking at you/to write anything that meant anything/you told us you were through"
  9. A Moment Of Silence - "i bet they think we wish we joined when we could/but we do what we want we don't do what we should"
  10. A Moment Of Violence - "i never did lose a battle but i'm feeling further from the end of war/deplored, ignored and rarely ever self-assured"
  11. The Saddest Song - "its been years since i've seen her face/fourteen years were just erased/if my life was your life would you ever take it back"
  12. The Big Sleep - "and if you go i'll be gone/and you'll be left alone/to live your life as you please/but someday you'll agree that i was always meant for you/and you were always meant for me/and you will see that you're impossible"
So, there you have it. Time to listen to some more podcasts and dream of a cool social life. HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!!!

exploit the workers, rape the land

Monday, October 23, 2006

Cleveland Politics

Oh, happy days, its midterm election time in Cleveland! And while there are many important issues being decided, I only care about two of them: Issues 3 and 18. Issue 18 adds yet another tax on smoking, this time benefitting the arts and such. Since smoking is the most retarded habit in the world, I see no problem punishing smokers in the name of culture. I also will vote yes on Issue 3, the slots issue, but my stance on this issue must be explained further.

Cleveland is one of the greatest city that used to be. The Browns and Indians used to win, it used to have a population over 900,000 (a lot of them employed), and people used to not feel sorry for us for living here. I know, it was all so long ago. But know this: Cleveland is also one of the greatest city that could be. This thought is dangerous, radical, hopeful, and it is for this last reason that I suspect no one really talks about the true importance of Issue Trois. You see, Clevelanders are sick and tired of hoping (you can, in large part, thank Jose Mesa, John Elway, and the 2006 Browns for this) and are for the most part resigned to living in a has been town. For us, being hopeful is about the shittiest thing in the world.

But there is reason to be hopeful! The following is a list of some things Cleveland is home to:
  • The Cleveland Orchestra- Widely considered one of the best orchestras in the world
  • Severance Hall- Neoclassical home of the Cleveland Orchestra, also featured in Air Force One (the movie, not the rap video)
  • The Cleveland Museum of Art- World reknowned museum with over 40,000! pieces on display
  • The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame- Laugh all you want, the building is unique and a must-see for anyone visiting Cleveland
  • The Great Lakes Science Center- Pretty cool science museum, and its got a giant wind turbine in its front yard
  • The Cleveland Metroparks- One of the largest metropolitan parks in the country and home the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo (monkey island!!!)
  • Playhouse Square Center- Second largest theatre complex in the US behind NYC's Lincoln Center and home to some radical architecture
  • Gateway Sports Complex- Home of Cleveland's best shot at a sports title and 2 of the 3 professional sports teams in the city (sorry Crunch or Force or whatever the hell your name is, indoor soccer is not a professional sport)
As Clevelanders, these are things we all know are good about our city, and when someone is reminding us of all the bad things about our town (nations poorest big city, rising unemployment, urban exodus, etc) these are the things we cling to. And while the above list is full of wonderful things, its just not enough. Its not enough to revive a near-desolate downtown, land conventions, battle unemployment, or provide gobs of money for education in C-Town.

So how is there hope? Well, lets pretend for a minute that there is a God, he can turn water into Jamison Irish Whiskey, and Issue 3 passes. A few years later casinos are built downtown, along with new hotels and restaurants. For once, downtown Cleveland would be interesting after 11 p.m. Thousands of new jobs would be created, as would hundreds of millions of tax dollars (to be used on education and just maybe a decent Innerbelt reconstruction plan instead of the inane two bridge monstrosity currently being advocated) just from the Ohio gamblers that currently go to West Virginia, Windsor, New York, and even Detroit (Detroit!) to gamble.

And that list of things we know are good about Cleveland? Imagine vacationers (yes, I said vacationers) staying in their downtown hotel/casino for a week, overwhelmed with all of the tourist attractions that they never knew existed in our fair, revitalized, vibrant, growing city. Imagine seeing them wandering around downtown, gawking at the Arcade or Tower City, or trying to figure out just what the hell the Free Stamp is all about. Imagine seeing these tourists and thinking "I told you so."

I will be voting yes on Issue 3, not because I like playing slots (slot machines are like broken vending mahines that dont have an out of order sign on them and then I put in my hard earned 50 cents and press the Dr. Pepper button and no Dr. Pepper comes out and Im sad the rest of the day), or because I think Learn and Earn is the cure-all for Cleveland City Schools (its not), but because of what Cleveland could be.

with you all my dreams underground

Thursday, July 27, 2006

I mean I had to write something

So here are a couple of thoughts on a few movies Ive recently seen:

Saddest Music in the World
  1. This movie answers the age old question "What would it be like if Darren Aranofsky smoked a bunch of peyote and directed an expressionist/drama/comedy/fantasy/musical?" Except his version would be good, unlike Guy Maddin's.
  2. Glass legs filled with beer are surprisingly sexy.
  3. Maria de Medeiros is in something other than Pulp Fiction.
  1. Shawn Hatosy is pretty cool.
  2. I have a huge crush on Rachael Leigh Cook. I mean huuuuuuuuuge.
  3. "How 'bout the penis?"
  4. Should have been called Patrick Swayze Eating a Sandwich. I am convinced it would have gotten a much wider release.
  5. I like this movie, gave it 5/5 on the 'flix.
The Exorcism of Emily Rose
  1. This movie gave me the HIV. I didnt know that was even possible.
  2. My dad has a crush on Laura Linney, which is why he watched this piece of shit, and even he couldnt defend her lack of acting ability. That is not a good thing.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Soccer chants do not belong at ska shows, or When I say Whole Wheat you say Bread

Aldous Huxley once said :"After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music." I have one thing to say to that....... yup. Last Saturday, July 8 in the year of your lord 2006 a little musical get together got together at the House of Blues in downtown C-Town. The Vacancies, Transition, Whole Wheat Bread, Streetlight Manifesto, and Reel Big Fish all did that thing they do at the house the $6 Guinness pints built. This show was, for me, one of those moments that I will remember 60 years from now (if Im alive that long), kinda like September 11th or the Kennedy assasintation for our parents, for three reasons: Whole Wheat Bread, Streetlight Manifesto, and the crazy fat chick at the bar.

To start with. Whole Wheat Bread is a straight up 3 piece punk band (and when I say punk I mean it, no pop-punk or other derivations). Their musicianship is solid, songwriting okay, and the lead singer sounds like any other punk vocalist when he sings. But not when he talks. You see, there is a reason they're not Whole White Bread. Take a look:

No, those are not 3 members of G-G-G-G-G-Unit and no, they do not rap. They are Whole Wheat Bread and what they do is ROCK! Indeed, the second best part of the show was hearing the lead singer rile the crowd with the ever popular "When I say Whole Wheat you say BREAD!" When I heard that, it made me warm and tingly inside. Fucking awesome.

Now to the crazy fat chick at the bar. Originally, I was going to attend this show with this guy I used to know. Lets call him Whizzer. He promised me he was all about seeing the show, yada yada yada, but his proverbial ball and chain is about the size of Connecticut and he hasnt the marbles to do what he wants, but thats an entirely different post altogether. Whatever. So I'm going to a concert alone. What to do, what to do? Oh yeah, get drunk and try not to think about being lame. Order a Guinness (as mentioned before six bucks, Im still walking funny) and strike up a conversation with what looks to be a nice, normal, rather large girl.

After the usual exchange of pleasantries (she drove in from Youngstown to see RBF, shes 24, etc.), we delve into a more specific brand of bullshitting, and this is where things start to get hairy. keep in mind now, I have known this person for a total of about 30 minues when i learn that one of her "friends" is in a Pennsylvania correctional facility for the remainder of his life. She has also done heroin (snorted, no needles), used to be heavy into the ecstasy, and does not particularly like black people. Yeah, kinda wierd. She also meets guys on the interweb and once flew to new York the day before Christmas to hang with some fashion designer guy she met in a chat room. After hearing this, methinks its time to jet, so I tell her that Im going to be leaving soon. She tells me to see her when I go, she might go to the bar with me, and besides shes all alone and just got paid so she might as well get herself a hotel room. What the fuck did I just get myself into? All I wanted to do was shoot the shit with someone, anyone to pass the time, and I pick this fat crazy chick with an "F" cup size (she was really proud of her boobs and liked to talk about them and show them off. Shudder.) Needless to say I gave her the slip and got the hell out of there.

So that brings us to the number 1 reason the night was memorable and the reason I strated this post with the Huxley quote anyways: Streetlight Manifesto. I am not exaggerating when I say that Streetlight Manifesto is the most original, hardworking, and important band in the whole "scene" today. Lead singer, guitarist, writer, and producer Tomas Kalnoky flat out knows how to make music and puts on one hell of a show. What really impressed me was how close to the album the songs sounded. Its hard enough to replicate the studio sound with a 3 piece band, but imagine doing it with seven! Kalnoky and co. came on stage, said hello, and went right into the first number, a new song that sounded good and one I look forward to hearing on the forthcoming CD (originally to be released in '04, its now coming out in the beginning of 2007. Grrr.) Then came That'll Be The Day, not my favorite SM song, but it sounded good. point/Counterpoint was next (I'll be coming back to this one in a minute), followed by A Moment of Silence/A Moment of Violence, which rocked more than a little. Everything Went Numb, the title track to SM's first CD was next, and it was frickin sweet. Another new song after that, a little bit slower ska song with pop flavor (whatever the hell that means, its the only way I can describe it). Since RBF was the headliner, SM got about 40 minutes and thus ended their amazing set with Here's to Life, originally written while he was with Catch 22, originally performed by Bandits of the Acoustic Revolution, and perfected by SM, this song is essentially a "What the fuck were you thinking?" to some of Kalnoky's literary and musical influences and is also what prompted me to read The Stranger. "How did Camus really die that night? Was it really his time, or was it suicide?" Awesome.

Holy shit that is one long paragraph, so I'll try to keep it short. Point/Counterpoint is my favorite song off Everything Goes Numb, catchy chorus, awesome lyrics, sweet horns, et cetera. It reminds me of a five and a half minute jam session that you never want to end, and it is a continuation of the song Keasbey Nights off the CD of the same title. If you click here, the Wikipedia entry even has a lyrical juxtaposition for reference. So, when they play live, they play both songs together, which turns into an eight minute singalong that topped any other concert moment I have ever had, and that includes hearing Ice-T say "Less Than Jake's some crazy motherfuckers!", so thats saying something. I cant even describe how it made me feel, but I do know that it will be hard for any other band to make me feel that way again. As I said, I wont be forgetting last Satuday night for a long, long time.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Posty McPosterson

Nestled in the valley at the confluence of E. 71 and Grant Ave in the wonderful town of Cuyahoga Heights lies my new place of employment. No longer am I chained to a desk for nine hours a day reading Filmsite's 15 page reviews for movies like Chinatown and Cool Hand Luke. Now I risk life and limb for ten hours a day making crazy shit in giant machines, like the venerable Haas HS-2 (of which I have a nice picture that I cannot upload as of right now because of It's really quite fascinating if youre into things like bird watching or reading a memoir about some guy reading the encyclopedia. Yeah, its not fascinating at all, but I do get a shift premium for working 4:00 pm to 2:20 am, which is indeed bonus.

On now to more exciting things. In case you havent heard, the artist formerly known as J-Dogg was complaining about the top ten songs on Soft Rock 102.1 WDOK- Your BEST way to spend the workday! Let me tell you something, he's right. And although that list is appalling, I have an addendum. Now I don't know if they play this song on WDOK or not, but at 3 am on VH1 I happened to catch the video for Black Horse and a Cherry Tree by KT Tunstall. Whatever you do, DO NOT CLICKK THIS LINK! For one, it will probably make your computer blow up and two, even if it works properly your head will explode like the guy from Scanners and then your computer desk will be messy and brain matter is fucking hard to clean up (trust me on this one). This song is an abomination, so it is probably fitting that Im bitching about it on 6/6/6. It features about three chords and approximately 739 whoa-oh's. Here are the lyrics if youre a sadist or an iBook/Starbucks poet.

And if you are normal and dont know who the fuck KT Tunstall is (like me, and by the way, if the black kid from Finding Forrester can start a sentence with and then so can I), here is a snippet taken from the news section of her myspace account: "KT Tunstall is a sparkling new songwriter with Chinese blood, a Scottish heart, great legwarmers and a cool name - "well, it's got a bit more attitude than Kate which just says farmer's daughter to me," she laughs. KT's unique perspective offers a rare emotionally connecting intensity through it's gripping lyrical bite and heartfelt melody. Her debut album 'Eye To The Telescope' is the creative consequence of inquiring imagination. "My songs examine and explore little specific emotions or situations or stories," she explains. "They're kitchen table songs, like a conversation between me and one other person. This lo-fi, visceral, boot-wielding approach was inspired by KT's recent conversion to the hiss and crackle of early blues. "On the whole, I'm a positive, skippity-la-la person but I love the dark side of music and I will always want to explore that. It's a positive-sounding album but there's stuff underneath for sure." KT is raring to channel all her infectious energies into her own music. "I'm not exactly sure what has driven me so hard," she says. "I've never questioned it. I've never had a back-up plan. I was never going to do anything else." This is a picture of her mugshot, so if you ever run into KT at Wal-Mart or something, just do me a favor and tell her she sucks.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Slicing up eyeballs, I want you to know

Although he was born in Spain, married a Frenchwoman, worked with Dali, won a BAFTA, was nominated for an Oscar, hated Catholics, and generally made some kick ass surrealist films, Luis Bunuel just seems so much cooler when chubby east coast hipsters with monosyllabic names like Kim Deal and Frank Black (I know, I know, he was Black Francis in the Pixies, but that name isnt monosyllabic so F you in the A) sing about him.

And in case you were interested (which you probably werent), you can actually watch Un Chien Andalou in its entirity by simply maneuvering your mouse right about here and clicking with the left mouse button. Its just that easy!

Nothing of actual import to add, I just felt that it was time to post something and Ive been singing that Goddamned song for about a week now. Ergo, the Debaser video.