Sunday, February 26, 2006

The Make Up: Untouchable Sound

When I first heard the Make Up, I was blown away. They were just weird and wonderful and I loved them immediately. That is why I was so excited to hear that there was a live album coming out this February. I picked it up the day it came out, and I was suitably impressed. The same great sound and crazy asides fill the record. And the sound quality of this recording is great. It was recorded live in 2000 at the Black Cat in D.C. by one Mr. Brendan Canty. (If you don't know, I don't have the time to explain)

While their live album "Destination: Love" was also great, "Untouchable Sound" is just that. It brings such life to classics like They Live by Night and I Am Pentagon. I listened to it non-stop when I first got it, and I'm still cranking it right now. There is just no good way to explain the music of the Make Up. No words seem to do it justice. The whole crazy-noise-like Dub Narcotic thing people try and pin on it just doesn't fit. I say listen for yourself and decide. Decide like I did, that it is fabulous.

So any Make Up fans who've been missing them a little, check out the new/old record. I promise you won't be disappointed.

Curious George

I'm pretty much a fan of most kids movies. Some of the Disney/Pixar movies are just plain awesome. And, I'm not ashamed to say I cried at Bambi, Fox and the Hound and Monsters, Inc. So, when I was invited to attend Curious George with some kick ass kids, my three nephews and my niece, of course I said YES! It was a great movie, featuring the voice of the incomparable Will Ferrell. He, of course, was the Man in the Yellow Hat. He goes to Africa to find an artifact to save his job at a fledgling museum, and accidentally brings back the lovable and cute-as-hell George. Much hilarity ensues. I won't give away any more, but needless to say, we all learned a valuable lesson. Not the least of which is that movie food in hella expensive.

But, a good time was had by all. There is nothing cuter than looking over in the dark and seeing my mom holding my nephew in her arms, totally entranced by the movie. It was sweeter than sweet. It is just one of the great moments. So, run out and see a feel good kids movie. Will Ferrell is great, and David Cross is the perfect bad guy.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Return of the Ink

Yes, that is right. The anger couldn't stay down for long. I kicked the crap out of that cold. It lasted two days. Sure, I had to sleep for like 18 hours on Wednesday, take zinc and eat 3 oranges to get rid of it. But, it is gone. New record for me, I think. Anyway, I'm back to my old self and all that. Heading to the homestead of my birth this weekend for a wash and wax, maybe some Curious George with the three terrors. We'll see.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Sickly Inky

After staving off sickness for two weeks while Anthony fought an ear infection, here I am; sick. I hate being sick. I revert to a state of perpetual grouchiness and turn into a little kid. I always have to call my mom, just to let her know I'm not feeling well, so she can comfort me. I don't live close enough for her to bring me soup or anything like that, so I have to get it via a long distance line. It's not really the same.

Mostly, when I feel like this, I walk around my house very slowly, because too many sudden movements hurt my head. I also sit around in the dark, trying not to move to much, as if I will break. Basically I'm a big baby.

So, forgive me for being miserable. Hopefully it won't last too long.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Do you feel lucky, Punk?!

Sometimes, things just work out. Unfortunately for me, in my life, it doesn't happen that often. Most of my misplaced anger stems from this very phenomenon. The traffic, the irritating people, the general bullshit of life. But, every now and then, everything falls into place, the stars align, and you have the nearly perfect moment, where nothing goes wrong and there is nothing to drive you crazy.

This happened to me the other night, when my cousin, my man and I went to see Henry Rollins at the Electric Factory in Philly. Usually, a trip to Philly from where I grew up is a crap shoot. Sometimes you can sail down the Schyulkill Expressway and get to where you are going in 35 minutes. But, then there are the nights, where it is two hours of grid-lock nonsense to go 20 miles. With this in mind, my cousin, Danielle, suggested we convene at 4:30 for a pre-show dinner. At first, I thought, "She's on crack. That is way too early." But, we did. After our dinner at Applebee's, we headed down the road to the highway to head to Philly. Now, this is where the trip can get interesting. But, it was smooth sailing, right down the line, with painless merges and exits.

Due to this good fortune, we arrived at the venue at 6:40, for the show at 8:30 and the doors opening at 7:30. We had wanted to be to the EF by 7:30, because the venue has no seats and, as much as I love Hank, I'm not standing for 2 1/2 hours at my age. So, we needed to get there early to run upstairs to the bar where there are stools. Well, the early part was covered. Early was also a bonus for the parking situation, which on previous trips to the EF, was a block and half away. On this night, we parked 50 feet from the front door. We sat in the car and watched the cars coming in and around 7:10, the line blob started to form. We reluctantly left the warm car, to stand in line in 18 degree weather. But, due to our quick thinking, we were about 15th in line.

Soon after the line started to form, the crack security team started giving us military style briefings on what would be happening with the search before entering. The frisking and such at the EF is intense, and we were prepared, carrying nothing but ID and money and ticket. We also avoided a will-call snafu that was occurring by me purchasing tickets way in advance. Then, on the third announcement he said the magic words. "There are some seats on the floor inside that are first come first serve." Never had more beautiful words been uttered. So, after a few more painful moments, they finally let us in. The frisking was nonexistent this time around, and we soon found ourselves inside and in the heat and heading towards the magical seats. Well, I was willing to settle for about row 3, but my man pointed to the front row seats still available, so we jumped on them.

We congratulated each other heartily for our forethought with the tickets, the departure and the snaring of seats. In a word, we were the shit. We had made the Electric Factory experience our bitch. And, in spite of the cold temps inside, we had nothing left to do but snuggle together and laugh our asses of at the amazing show Henry put on.

Sometimes, life really comes through for you. And, due to the smarts of three unlikely geniuses, we ruled that night. Long may we reign.

*For a complete run-down of the show, check out my man's account
of the evening right here.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

What's My Age Again?

This woman I work with made a comment today that I don't seem like someone who is almost 30 years old. She said I seem like I should be younger. See, I'm 29, but am often mistaken for someone much younger. Not that this is a problem. I was blessed with good genes, and look maybe 24 or 25. But, the real issue is about this notion of adulthood, and not really being one. I'm not sure I really even know what it means to be an adult, but the book on me is, that I don't really seem like a person who owns a home, has been married for 6 and 1/2 years and is going to be thirty this year.

I am the youngest in my family and have grappled with the feelings of being too young, never being old enough to do anything cool and always being left out. But, as an adult, I thought all that would go away. But, on some level, it hasn't. I still feel like a little kid a lot of the time. That is probably a lot of my own crap, but I have to admit, I don't feel like a grown up. I abhor most of the connotations that come with it. I never really wanted a real job, I hate "work clothes" or slacks and I still stay up way too late, in spite of the fact that I have to get up early. When the chips are down, I identify more with younger people that I do with people "my age." I quote movies and television, I am very selfish, I like tattoos and piercings, I own too many CD's and I always put myself and my needs first. And, I don't want to stop doing any of it. I don't really want to become an "adult". Not that I begrudge anyone their life, but it's just not for me.

So, what does it mean to be an adult? Is it all mini-vans and early to bed? Or can it be doing dumb, "kid" things forever? I don't know, but maybe someday I'll figure it out.

Monday, February 13, 2006

What the Fuck?!

Those poor, poor little puppies. That is just plain wrong.

-Man, what the hell is wrong with German people? - Kyle, South Park

I'm Just Telling You What I Saw

Have you ever experienced the joy of watching a grandfather and his grandson have a knock-down-drag-out fight right in front of your eyes, complete with shoving and punching. Well, I just did today at work, and I am still stunned. This is an 80+ man, shoving this mountain of a teenager, bitching at him about how he was in WW2 so he should shut up and respect him. It was truly a classic. I tried with all my might not to laugh. It was hard.

This is not the first time that I have been witness to crazy things done and said in public. People seem to like to argue in public venues. Everything from classic "nothing fights" (thanks Dane) to full blown explosions of emotions. And, I have laughed at all of them. I can't help it. But, sometimes it isn't even that serious. It the mundane comments that I love the most.

I was at a bookstore the other week, minding my own business, when I hear a woman and man in the history section, talking rather loudly. It went a little something like this. Man - "Did you find it?" Woman - "No, I can't even concentrate this music is so loud and grating." It was jazz. I ran to my friend to tell them what I had heard and collapsed into laughter. I was out with my man at a restaurant and we heard people at the next table lamenting about what they were going to do, because their hairdryer had broken. They couldn't imagine what their next move should be. UH. . . .BUY A NEW ONE?! People slay me.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Left by the Door

Every now and then, people leave things on our doorstep. Usually it is a solicitation for a charity or a menu of some type. But, the other day, the strangest thing was waiting for me by the door. It was a baggie, which contained 4 round, rubber things and a post-it. The post-it read: "These go under legs when bed is open--saves carpet." So, I suppose these rubber things were made to protect my carpet from a bed. Trouble is, we don't have a fold out bed. The question then became, who left this? And why? Was is some benevolent carpet saving group, just looking out for us? Or could it be that they know something I don't about the statis of my carpet. I guess I'll never know the motivation of this unknown baggie-leaver. The world is a strange and mysterious place, and this post-it is my proof.

Guilty Pleasures: Television

Now, here is where we really get serious. There are so many choices here for guilty pleasures. I mean, reality TV alone makes for a veritable treasure trove of gorgeously bad television. I used to be on a strict diet of no reality television, but I broke down some time ago. That is not to say that there aren't scripted shows that fall under this category as well. So, here we go:

Maury Povich - David, You are the father! Priceless.
Instant Star - NOGN show about a Canadian girl who wins a singing contest, and much drama ensues.
True Life - This MTV series is great. Some of the high points being, "I have a friend with benefits" and "I want plastic surgery."
Nip/Tuck - Not so much of one anymore, but it is a terrifically bad show all the same
Starting Over - Middle aged women with tremendous issues. Hilarious!!
Made-for-TV movies on ABC Family - Like Lucky Seven with Kimberly Williams-Paisley. It was precious.
Dancing with the Stars - I adored this last season. John O'Hurley rocks my world.
Real World/Road Rules Challenge - I used to watch these a lot, but now they are so over the top, I can't even take them anymore.
Elimidate - This is a classic G.P.
Cheaters - Don't see it very often, but the host got stabbed for god sake.

There it is. A brief look at some of the trainwreck television we all love to watch, secretly of course.

Guilty Pleasures: Movies

In keeping with the same theme, I have extended my list of guilty pleasures to movies. There are so many great movies out there. These aren't widely considered among them. These are the ones that every time they come on HBO, I watch them, even though they mostly suck. Each one in their own way, of course. So here we go:

Showgirls - Of course, this is the mack-daddy of all guilty pleasure films.
The Punisher - Not only is this movie hilarious (not on purpose) Thomas Jane is delicious in it, and shirtless a lot.
Center Stage - Ballet movie with maybe two actual actors in it.
Chasing Liberty - The best of the first-daughter oeuvre, I think.
Spice World - Again, I celebrate their entire catalogue.
Morgan's Ferry - I bought this because you see Henry Rollins' naked ass in it. I'm not even sure that there is a plot. I really don't care.
Heathers - Just plain brilliant.

This is by no means a complete list. Believe me. This is merely a smattering.
Coming Soon . . . television!

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Guilty Pleasures: Music

We all have them. Those songs that we love, but don't tell anyone we love. This is another hot topic of conversation amongst my friends. I stopped apologizing for my musical tastes years ago, but I have to admit there are a few tracks that I just adore that get me laughed at, or worse. But, I am not ashamed. Because, people, it is sometimes fun to dance around your house to a really sweet, crap-tacular song. So here is a short list of some of mine, in no particular order.

Wait - White Lion
She's Only 17 - Winger
We Built this City - Starship
Spice Up Your Life - Spice Girls (really, I celebrate their whole catalogue)
Back For Good - Take That
Supermodel - Rupaul
Weak - SWV
Prove Your Love - Taylor Dayne
Yeah - Usher
Escape - Rupert Holmes
Islands in the Stream - Dolly Parton feat. Kenny Rogers
Hold On - Wilson Phillips

So, there . . . what are your guilty pleasures?

Early Dismissal

It is a great feeling, getting to leave work early, when everyone else has to stay. Due to my schedule, I get to do it about once every two weeks, and I have to tell you, it feels phenomenal. Everyone seems to get so pissed off that I have to leave, because then they actually have to do work. See, being a grunt, low man on the totem pole, schmendrick, whatever you want to call it, I get stuck doing a lot of shit that other people could easily do themselves. So, for a little while at least, they are stuck having to do the shit work all by their lonesome. It is so nice. I get to go home, eat a snack, have a nap, watch some television, whatever. And, every now and then I look at the clock and think, "Ha Ha, they still have to work for another two hours."

Maybe the paperboy is right, maybe I am just a mean old lady - Sophia, Golden Girls

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Harmony in my Head

So, I've been staying up late. Especially on Tuesdays. Particularly on Tuesdays. Late, staring at my computer screen, listening to a radio show, streaming from L.A. Until 1 am. Making me cranky and tired for my shit hole job the next day.

As if my Henry Rollins obsession needs to be fed any more, he has blessed us all with the return of his radio show, Harmony in my Head, on Indie 103.1. So, every Tuesday night, I stay up late, and listen. To stuff I know, stuff I've never heard before. Stuff that sucks, stuff I love, all of it. No matter what it is, I listen. His fanatical footnotes to each song (live, bootleg, German pressing and the like) and the story that goes with it are almost as entertaining as the show itself. Those people who are crazy like that, like me, appreciate the subtle differences things like this make. His story about the first time he saw Ian Svenonius of Nation of Ulysses of course in no way compares to the time I met him at a costume shop in Maryland, but it makes me feel like less of a geek for being so excited by it.

So, screw the job, screw the sleep, I will continue to while away the hours listening to the man spin the tunes, and turn me into a true fanatic.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Jenny Lewis with the Watson Twins: Rabbit Fur Coat

I wasn't so sure about the solo album from the child star turned singer Jenny Lewis. I am a big fan of her band Rilo Kiley, and her side work with the Postal Service. But, all the reviews I heard kept evoking the word "country." But, I was pleasantly surprised by the complex melodies and hand-clapping good fun of this album. Her voice has a clear, vulnerable edge that you don't always get with the more rock-pop of Rilo Kiley. There is a more poetic lyrical style to her songs, that can sometimes be a little disjointed, when compared to her Rilo Kiley lyrics. The songs go from lilting ballads to more honky-tonk style up tempo numbers. I really like "You Are What you Love" and "The Big Guns." Overall, I really like the folksy-twangy vibe of the record. Fans of Rilo Kiley will find it a departure, but I think it's a good one. Give it more than one listen, to allow the full effect to soak in.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Top 5

I'm sure you've all seen the "Friends" where Ross and Rachel make their lists of the 5 celebrities that they would be "allowed" to sleep with. I'm willing to bet that some of you have done this as well. This topic has come up a lot recently with friends and it got me to thinking. I haven't really updated my list in a while. So, I thought I would update my do-able hotties list, and maybe add some new blood to the pack. Some things never change, but others come and go. I also have the honor and the distinction of being the only person I know who has actually met my number one face to face (no sex though, too many other people around). So here it is, I hope it inspires one of your own.

1) Henry Rollins - If you need to ask why, then you don't know me at all.

2) Dave Grohl - Cute as cute can be and funny. What more could a girl want?

3) Ewan McGregor - My God, Moulin Rouge. Need I say more?

4) Hugh Jackman - I sat through Swordfish just to see him. What does that tell you?

5) Jon Stewart - Because sarcasm is the ultimate aphrodisiac.

*Honorable Mentions: John Cusack, Thomas Jane, George Eads, Russell Crowe, Johnathan Rhys-Meyers, Vince Vaughn, Luke Wilson.