Saturday, May 31, 2008
Before I put it on the sidewalk with a sign that says "Free," I thought I'd let you guys know that it's free to the first interested party who leaves a comment and can come get it.
*Princess lamp not included.
Now, a good twenty-five years later, imagine my surprise to hear "Hocus Pocus" playing on my TV this morning. The bigger shock is that I heard it in a new McDonald's commercial featuring Line Rider game. I can't find a good clip of the ad on YouTube, otherwise I'd share it here.
Anyway, thanks to McDonald's I was inspired to buy the song on iTunes today. You might like to do the same. It's a really great song. And a great memory for me.
Friday, May 30, 2008
I guess they just don't make honeysuckle like they used to.
Thursday, May 29, 2008
Sunday, May 25, 2008
Friday, May 23, 2008
After reading a wonderful post on opera by Donald Laub at the New York Public Library blog, I borrowed a few of his faves from my own Hermitage Public Library. It's been an absolute joy to listen to this beautiful music this week. Some opera goes way over my head and I have no problem with that at all. The stories are unknown to me and I really don't care for the more bombastic pieces. And the male singers don't move me in the least.
What I do like, what does capture me in the best of ways, is the aria. The word itself is Italian for "air." I like that. It's during the pleasure of listening to a soft and beautiful aria that I feel somewhat light as air. The singers pictured above are: Anna Netrebko, Deborah Voigt, Cecilia Bartoli, Karita Mattila, Angela Gheorghiu, and Renee Fleming.
Yesterday I was listening to Karita Matilla when my daughter Ari asked me what I was listening to. I told her and she lit up upon hearing the word "aria." "That's like my name," she exclaimed cheerfully. Indeed, it is. And my life is filled with beauty.
Thursday, May 22, 2008
I offered to my lovely wife today that she could buy me one of two possible gifts for Father's Day this year. I suggested that either an iPod docking station alarm clock or an external hard drive for the laptop would be a perfectly useful and wonderful gift from her to me.
Now there's nothing wrong with this at all, except for the sad fact that for this year's Mother's Day all the poor woman received from yours truly was a card. This is where I imagine some of you are saying, "Can you imagine the gall of this blogger?"
To be fair, that external hard drive really would be a gift for us though.
Born to Be ... Fuel Efficient
Also, visit SCOOTRAK: affordable GPS tracking for your vehicle
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Monday, May 19, 2008
Anyway, one of my fave podcasts is one called Blarm! and it is hosted by a lovely lady who goes by the name of Wankergirl. (I'm pretty sure she answers to Dana as well.) Some good news from her tonight is that she recently wrote a short piece for an alt-weekly in the St. Johns area called The Scope. Like so many of us would like to be, she is now a published author. (Yay, Dana!) The subject of her piece? How to start your own podcast.
Maybe one day, Paige and I will think of something cool, informative, or funny to talk about and we'll become filthy, rich podcasters like my heroes, Dawn and Drew. Until then, I'll continue on with this blog and keep listening to those tech savvy folks with their microphones on.
Pop songs should be happy, and proliferating like liberated little algae. Are we all hanging on Usher’s abs? Chris Martin’s stubble? Dwayne Carter’s, um, chains? The Jonas Brothers? (Why did we take Hanson for granted?) Where is the song that can slow down time and make us like the fact that Top 40 plays the same hits over and over?It's my opinion that "Clumsy" by Fergie, had it not been released way back in September of 2007, would have been that perfect breezy summer hit. I only discovered it a few months ago (terrific video!) and it's hardly left my mind's library of hummable tunes since.
Sunday, May 18, 2008
On my way back home to my family yesterday, after watching a wonderful performance of The Underpants at TPAC, I stole a few extra minutes for myself by stopping at the dam. Out of the car and standing beside it, everything was beautiful.
With purpose, every detail was noticed and appreciated. From the birds soaring above, to the joggers running up the hill, to the sun setting just over the trees to my right, my mindful awareness of good things allowed for relaxed contentment.
Don't mind me. Just sharing a moment.
Friday, May 16, 2008
Well, here's my noise: I call my wife "sweetie" much more often than I refer to her by her name. I'm not sure, but I think she calls me the same. I don't even notice anymore. My two youngest kids call each other "sweetie" pretty often and my heart melts a bit whenever I hear that. There's nothing condescending or sexist about the way we use the word; it's just a habit that we have.
Of course, the difference is that we are all intimate here and no one's going to be offended. When I'm at work, I don't use it because one just never knows how it's going to be received. We must always be mindful of others and how they might interpret our words and actions. A mindful phrase we use at work is, "Perception is reality." Literally speaking, I don't agree with that, but I get its meaning and it's a smart way to go about dealing with others.
Anyway, my point is that I use the word in kindness so much around the house that I could easily see myself forgetting my rules and using it at work simply out of habit. It could happen. I once almost ended a phone call with a boss of mine by telling her that I love her. It's how I always end phone calls with my wife and I remember the time it tried to slip out simply by habit with my boss. (Yikes!)
And that's all it was with Obama. It was both nice and wise of him to apologize to her before anyone had made any kind of deal out of it. He simply realized that his habit got the best of him and he did the courteous thing. It turns out that the reporter had hardly noticed the "sweetie" and was only concerned about getting her question for her story answered. That's how it goes though. Never mind the serious questions asked of the political candidate; we can just obsess over the use of a word as innocuous as "sweetie."
I was looking through my flickr shots tonight and came across this one of my daughter. I took it after the tornado ripped through Hartsville back in February. My grandfather's farm was hit pretty hard, but thankfully the destruction was limited to property. Some farm buildings were leveled and he had some window and roof damage to his house.
Anyway, I like this picture of Ari and thought I'd share it here.
Thursday, May 15, 2008
Anyway, here's my most recent post...en français.
J'ai fait l'erreur de prise en charge trois grands livres à la bibliothèque hier. Je ne suis pas un lecteur rapide et je n'ai pas beaucoup de temps pour la lecture de toute façon. En attente pour moi sur la demande plateau ont été Richard Price "Lush Life" (464 pages), Junot Diaz "The Wondrous Brève vie d'Oscar Wao" (352 pages) et "Grands Travaux à court de Dostoïevski" (768 pages). Il n'ya pas de façon je vais lire toutes les pages en trois semaines.
Je ne l'ai ouvert au hasard Dostoïevski à quelque part au milieu de "Notes from Underground" tout sur ma pause hier soir et me suis retrouvé profondément fasciné avec le narrateur de coupe la parole à une femme du nom de Lisa. Au lieu de rentrer au début, je viens tenu de cette lecture aléatoire place. Peut-être que ce n'était pas l'intention de Dostoïevski, mais je suis en train de lire "Notes from Underground" dans le cadre mystère. Ce qui est Lisa? Qu'est-ce que c'est elle qu'il est de son enseignement si durement? Comment at-il rencontrer? Quoi de sa fixation avec elle? Il est probable que je serai de se coucher tard ce soir pour la terminer, et puis de nouveau à partir de la page et une lecture à l'endroit où je hasard a commencé avant. À l'instar de Dostoïevski selon les directives de Tarantino, il vous tous ensemble dans le temps.
Mais assez parlé des livres. Je suis chez moi avec les enfants aujourd'hui et il est temps de construire un fort oreiller. Il est temps parce qu'ils disent que c'est. Sonne bien pour moi.
I did open Dostoevsky randomly to somewhere in the middle of "Notes from Underground" while on my break last night and found myself deeply enthralled with the narrator's cutting speech to a woman named Lisa. Instead of going back to the beginning, I just kept reading from that random spot. Maybe it wasn't Dostoevsky's intention, but I am now reading "Notes from Underground" as part mystery. Who is this Lisa? What is it she does that he's lecturing her so harshly about? How did he meet her? What's his fixation with her? It's likely that I'll be staying up late tonight to finish it, and then starting it again from page one and reading it to where I randomly began before. Like Dostoevsky as directed by Tarantino, it'll all come together in time.
But enough about books. I'm home with the kids today and it's time to build a pillow fort. It's time because they say it is. Sounds good to me.
The question is this: Should I tell my wife about this now or let her find out when she reads this post?
[Edit to add: It actually came back out seconds later and I got it. Just having some fun with the above question.]
[Edit to add more: Oops. I really thought she would check this from work. It seems that I didn't take into consideration that she might have time to actually get online at home this morning. Sorry, babe. ;)]
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
Special to The Commercial Appeal
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
LAUZERTE, France -- In this picturesque and historic village in Southwest France, Rene Beziat is a man on a mission. He is determined to introduce his countrymen to the joys of American-style barbecue, one festival at a time.
This is no small task. The French take second place to no one when it comes to food, with an abundance of locally grown produce and meats and cheeses to die for. They have a strong tie to tradition when it comes to what food they like and how they like it prepared.
"You cannot tell a Frenchman what to eat," Beziat observes.
When it comes to meat, the French may say they "barbecue," but that really means they cook sausages and steak on a standard grill. The idea of smoked meat is a concept that does not really register with the average Frenchman -- at least not yet. (Click for the rest of the article.)
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
Monday, May 12, 2008
As good as a song is when it's all queued up on purpose by its fan, it's all the more sensational when it comes out of those little speakers by complete surprise. I'll look for Serge, that mischievous Frenchman, later. Tom plays now. I reflect and force a smile.
Sunday, May 11, 2008
Saturday, May 10, 2008
You know how it is. Long hours at work, getting home late, getting up early with a feverish kiddo, etc. I'll try to listen to it in its entirety soon. Meanwhile, go to Corey's site and watch a video of Garrett performing at Corey's Kentucky Derby Party. It's good stuff.
Friday, May 09, 2008
2. Tom Waits - Blood Money
3. Gogol Bordello - Super Taranta!
4. Fergie - The Dutchess
Work wore my body out tonight. Some nights I stand around hoping that someone, anyone, will require me to do some work. I hardly had time to breathe tonight. No complaints there, but I'm still wide awake at 2 AM as a result of all that hustle and bustle.
I thought I'd wind down to some tunes once I got home, but the choices on my iPod just got more Up and Up. I should have put on Coltrane. Instead I started with the somber beauty of Tom Waits' Alice, but I just went more pop with each album selection. Oh well, the good news is that the kids are healthy and off to school in the morning. After getting up and helping get them ready for their day, it's back to bed until the crack of noon for me.
It's day 3 of an eight day stretch. My next day off is next Thursday and if all goes as requested I'll have Friday, Saturday, and Sunday off as well. There's a Sounds game to attend on Friday night and a presentation of Steve Martin's The Underpants at TPAC's Polk Theatre the following night for me. Anyone going to either?
Wednesday, May 07, 2008
After the 2000 and 2004 losses, I heard many folks talk disgustedly about moving to Canada. Didn't happen. There's a lot of emotion in statements like these, but I don't worry about a bunch of fellow Democrats getting all Canuck on me. Surely I can't imagine, after some time has passed between the upcoming Democratic nomination and the general election, that most Democrats who currently support Hillary won't be casting their vote for Obama. (Or Obama supporters voting for Hillary, for that matter.)
After a few weeks of grumbling, and letting it sink in that the losing campaign is actively endorsing the victor, the bad feelings will pass and the party will be united again. That's my take on it anyway.
Two ducks happily relaxing, resting assured that no pesky turtles will be biting at their duck feet in this watering hole.
Doin' the duck flap.
Waiting for the starting gun.
Duck #1: Would you stop with the bubble noises?
Duck #2: Sorry.
Pool break over. Time to get back to the pond.
Tuesday, May 06, 2008
Fast forward to tonight. I hadn't thought of Celinda Pink in a decade or more but my weird little brain that can't recall where I put the car keys five minutes ago all of a sudden brought her name front and center. I'm not sure what sparked my memory of her. One minute I was looking at John Hiatt and Little Village videos on YouTube, and then I found myself looking for the Web presence of one Celinda Pink.
Sadly, there's not much out there. I did, however, find a story on her in a Jacksonville, Florida paper. Alcohol, it turns out, was the major problem when she was best positioned for big fame. She lost her studio and management deal and pretty much gave it up. Now (well, the story dates back to April '07), she's waitressing in Jacksonville and playing when and where she can.
I hope she's doing well.. If we make the move to Florida this summer, I'll do my best to catch a live performance by Miss Celinda Pink. If you ever see her CD in a used record shop or find her name on the door of a club somewhere, please do yourself a favor and hear what she's got to share. I'm glad I remembered her name tonight.
Monday, May 05, 2008
Anyone going? Anyone got a free (or cheap) ticket?
- The aforementioned Tom Waits tour. (Already wondering who I know in Knoxville who would let me crash on a couch should I be able to make that road trip.)
- A new Nine Inch Nails album release today. It's called The Slip. It's a free download. It's here.
- Prince is writing a book entitled 21 Nights. The guarantee of its worth is in the accompanying CD of live performances.
Tom Waits, announcing his upcoming tour, raises the bar on how to announce upcoming tours.
Look to the night sky, see the "PEHDTSCKJMBA" and follow the stars. Knoxville's Civic Theatre is in there. Do you see it? The saving for tickets starts now.
Visit TomWaits.com for all that you need. List of stops here.
Saturday, May 03, 2008
Friday, May 02, 2008
The piece opens and closes with the story of a man who found himself trapped in an elevator for forty-one hours. While that is quite the attention grabber, most of the article is about the history and technology of elevators. Not necessarily fascinating stuff, but in the week or so since the issue came out, I've seen many bloggers writing about it. (It really is a fascinating read.) Of course, the very-dedicated-to-all-things The New Yorker, Emdashes, wrote about it, but people who rarely if ever write about the magazine are writing about that story. Maybe elevators captivate us more than I suspect. (Just, hopefully, not for forty-one hours at a time.)
Anyway, if you haven't read it yet, please do. It really is pretty amazing. What's really making the rounds on the Internet is the time-elapsed video of Nicholas White, the man who was trapped for the better part of two days in the elevator. I'm transfixed watching it. Four frames: three empty elevators and his, documenting his every move. Click here to watch the video.
Of course, the Web being the Web, there is now a very funny parody video of the above.
"I've followed my mother's advice: Always have younger friends. They'll look after you later on."I thought of that the other night while I was at work. I'm not the oldest employee at the hotel but at the relatively advanced age of thirty-eight I'm far from the youngest. One of the young whippersnappers (only 23!) was standing next to me that night and remarked on the poor fashion sense of a man who was heading outside for a quick jog. I answered her words with silence as I was perplexed at the phantom faux-pas.
Finally I asked her what the supposed offense was. "Look at his socks," she replied.
"His socks? What's wrong with his socks?"
"They're tube socks," she said. Apparently, it should have been obvious. She might as well have said, "Duh!"
Well, I'm guilty. When I run, I wear my tube socks. I'm wearing some right now. That's what we wore in gym class way back in the 80s and if they were good enough then, they must be good enough now. Right?
I guess not.
There was denial for a bit. Maybe my friend was mistaken or just speaking for a small segment of today's youth. Surely I could quiz a few passersby and find my way of doing things to be validated.
One coworker, then another and still another heard my query and aged me more with each answer. I found no one who would run in anything taller than ankle socks. Some were even sure that I was just joking about my tube socks. "Who wears those anymore?," one friend laughed.
Am I that old-school? At least I don't have little green stripes at the top of them.
Fine. The kids win. I guess the cool people of 2008 wear ankle socks. Now it's decision time for me. Do I change my aging ways and buy a new pack of socks or do I just stubbornly stick with what I know and pull those tube socks as close to my knees as they will stretch?
When it comes to working along with my younger friends, the ones who will "look after" me, I think I'll go for the comedic mileage of sticking with my tall, tall socks when I run.
Of course, today's pouring rain reminds me that it's nice to have a roof when driving sometimes, too.
Meanwhile, today's drama at the Hotel Chelsea continues. In short, Stanley Bard was forced out by the board in June, 2007. BD Management replaced him much to the protest of residents and loyalists. Just this week, BD was fired for "willful misconduct." What's next will undoubtedly be documented at Ed Hamilton's fantastic blog, Living with Legends: Hotel Chelsea Blog.
Thursday, May 01, 2008
"With the pitter-patter of tiny dancing feet soon to be heard at Chez Bez, he and partner Monica are so content with life in suburbia that they recently agreed to appear on television’s reincarnated celebration of cosy 1970’s matrimony, Mr & Mrs."
No, not my underpants. My Underpants. As in, my ticket to see Steve Martin's adaptation of an old play entitled The Underpants. As I lifted the garbage sack up and was about to tie it and take it out to the dumpster the other night, I glanced downward and saw the envelope addressed to me pressed against the thinly stretched white plastic. My wife told me later that when she looked at it, she thought it was just a mailer soliciting a subscription or something. Nope. It's the ticket I was expecting for the play I like by the writer I love. Thank goodness I noticed it.
*Then again, maybe she threw it away on purpose because I'm the kind of guy who sits here and publicly blogs about her when I should be doing the dishes?