Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Song of the Day: "Carin at the Liquor Store"

I love The National.

No, that's not right.

I find the music of The National to be rewarding.

Emotionally challenging? Sure. Rewarding? Definitely.

Make of that what you will.

Song: "Carin at the Liquor Store"
Artist: The National

Friday, August 4, 2017

Song of the Day: "Scars To Your Beautiful"

To my beautiful what, Alessia Cara?!!!


In reviewing the MTV Video Music Award nominees for Video of the Year (yes, it's insanely stupid that MTV still does this, except not really since they are pretty much able to leverage this for a lot of free press based on whatever scandalous thing _________ does/says/wears this year, and you can never get enough gift bags [unless the value of said gift bag is reported to the IRS]) I ran across this somewhat meh song from Alessia (she made my top 10 singles list in 2015 and, comparatively, this is a let down). And when I read about the song via Wikipedia, I felt super old:
Katy Iandoli of Idolator stated "[Scars to Your Beautiful] is a modern-day version of TLC's 'Unpretty', in its acknowledgment of the beauty in both visible and invisible imperfections."
Why would something be a modern-day version of a song that's like 6 years old?! Only "Unpretty" isn't 6 years old. It's 36 years old!!!!

No, it's not, it's just 19 years old.

Still, old. Yikes.

Song: "Scars To Your Beautiful"
Artist: Alessia Cara

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Song of the Day: "What'll I Do"

I don't recall how I crossed paths with Kathleen Grace, but I'm on her email list. She emailed me to let me know about the video for this song, a collaboration with pianist Larry Goldings.

Grace is a song stylist (it seemed important to mention that).

The song is from Irving Berlin. It was definitely important to mention that.

No Norah Joneses were harmed in the making of this song... I'm guessing.

Song: "What'll I Do"
Artist: Kathleen Grace/Larry Goldings

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

More Like 25 Words

CheatSheet, which is a website or something (maybe it's an aspirational sticky lifestyle brand, maybe a curated immersive platform for the alt-right), published a piece titled "11 Words You Should Never Say in a Job Interview" (here) and that seemed like the kind of thing I would find useful (unless it put these words in my head to avoid thus subconsciously inspiring me to say them, but what are the odds that could ever happen?!!!). Rather than force you to endure the click bait, there is their list:

  1. Always
  2. Never
  3. Uh, um, like
  4. For sure!
  5. Yep, yeah, nope, nah
  6. Dude, man, bro
  7. I don’t know
  8. %#@!
  9. If that makes sense
  10. So, yeah
  11. Awesome
Are they fucking kidding? That's more than 11 words.

In fact, it's 24 words plus a few punctuation marks used together to convey an expletive like fuck or shit or cunt (I'm guessing). Pussies. 

Side note: if they'd just titled the piece "Words and Phrases to Avoid in a Job Interview" it would have saved me so much effort (full disclosure: actual effort expended, approx. 18 minutes).

Here are a few different examples of 11 words I think you should really avoid in a job interview. And I challenge you to prove me wrong (by using any one of these and getting a job offer--go for it!):
  • "But you’re just a chick. Where is the actual hiring manager?"
  • "I just pissed in the hallway. That’s how I roll, bitches."
  • "Why give him the job if he’s going to recuse himself?"
  • "Y’all cool with me doing my MLM thing in the office?"

Got some to share? Put it in the comments below.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Song of the Day: "I Could Be Anything"

In celebration of this afternoon's blistering in the sun concert with the Violent Femmes and Echo & the Bunnymen at the zoo, here's something from them from last year's release.

Song: "I Could Be Anything"
Artist: Violent Femmes

Monday, July 31, 2017

Song of the Day: "Weights and Stones"

It's getting hot. It's summer, so yeah, that's expected, but hot here = miserable me. I worked outside today in the heat: 99° Fahrenheit (except like 88 for real).

Fortunately luck was with me, assigning me deliveries in my neighborhood (my last delivery was 2 packages, of 20 in total, on my block), and a very small number relative to the 4 hours at $26 an hour I signed up for. I was done within 90 minutes which included stopping for gas and a Super Big Gulp.

None of which has anything to do with today's song.

Song: "Weights and Stones"
Artist: Tree Machines

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Song of the Day: "We Were Beautiful"

Belle and Sebastian
Belle and/or Sebastian reminisce about a time, years ago, when we were beautiful.

I'll go them one better, we were also much lighter, far more social, and flossed daily.

Song: "We Were Beautiful"
Artist: Belle and Sebastian

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Song of the Day: "Jazz Crimes"

The Last Artful, Dodgr (stylistically rocking both intraname punctuation and the -er that is so popular with the kids today with their Grindrs and Tindrs and pacemakrs) is taking Portland's hip hop community by storm. And if not Portland's entire  hip hop community, at least the hip hop community that I talk to regularly, my friend Stephanie.

TLA,D rocks Pick-a-thon this weekend. I'm not sure if that's the most urban Pendarvis Farms has ever been, but I'll assume that it is.

Song: "Jazz Crimes"
Artist: The Last Artful, Dodgr/Neill Von Tally

Friday, July 28, 2017

Disappointing David Brooks, Parts 433 & 434

David thinks the Blacks are cool, possibly the apotheosis of cool (it is a word, look it up). Staying cool under the pressure of racism is cool.

White people who did that whole Horatio Alger, ass-kissing, race to the top of the business world thing: not cool. Too obvious. Too needy. They cared too much.

Cool is detached, dumb asses.

Kendrick Lamar is cool bitches. Don't ever forget that David Brooks said Kendrick Lamar is cool. David Brooks knows that you wouldn't realize that if he hadn't told you.

David Brooks thinks Robert Downey Jr. might have gone the cool way, but really he's too far adrift.

David Brooks doesn't think Jeff Bridges or Daniel Day-Lewis or Ryan Gosling are cool. Taylor Swift probably tries too hard.

Miles Davis never used Instagram. And the people who are pushing Kid Rock to run for Senate are super cereal y'all. But not if they look like they're trying too hard.

Meanwhile David Brooks will point out that you haven't even read Senator Jeff Flake's book yet. But maybe that's because it hasn't been released yet.

Sen. Flake is honorable because he has a background that is hard-working and manly, and also because he is standing up to Donald Trump's unsavory ways.

David is disappointed that not everyone is standing up to Donald Trump's unsavory ways which means that Washington has this aura of unsavoriness about it.

He misses polite Washington. Jeff Flake was part of polite Washington.

If you're not acting like Jeff Flake you're the reason it's so unsavory in Washington right now. That is so very taxing on Brooks.

Song of the Day: "Plastic Machinery"

Charlatans [are they still UK? who can say] released their 13th studio album a couple of months ago.  This track features the musical styling of one Johnny Marr (if you think it should be musical stylings, I get it, that was me 3 minutes ago, check it) and dude from Dandy Warhols which, now that I know he's in the mix I totally can't unhear it.

What have you been up to?

Song: "Plastic Machinery"
Artist: Charlatans

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Song of the Day: "I Feel So Bad"

Chris Wilson shared a band on the Factbook and now I am shamelessly stealing them for a SotD. That's how it works.

Song: "I Feel So Bad"
Artist: Kungs/Ephemerals

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Song of the Day; "This Is My Kingdom Now"

The song title has me imagining him updating the reference every 20 or 30 seconds, "now THIS is my kingdom now... now this is my kingdom now."

Regardless, it's what I found when I asked the Google what Del Amitri are up to these days.

Song: "This Is My Kingdom Now"
Artist: Justin Currie

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Song of the Day: "Less Than"

This track is from the second of 3 Nine Inch Nail EPs (ADD VIOLENCE is the title). I love it!.



Love it.

Totally 80s.


Lourve (is that a thing?).

Emoji of a large heart.

Hash tag love

Artist: Nine Inch Nails

Monday, July 24, 2017

Song of the Day: "Sleeping Around the Corner"

Lindsey Buckingham and Christine McVie released an album together that has been characterized as Buckingham/McVie a la Buckingham/Nicks, but it's distinctly noted that the album is actually Lindsey Buckingham/Christine McVie... probably to keep John McVie from trying to take credit. Drummers, amirite?

Note: everything I've heard has been strangely disappointing. Hoping that changes.

Song: "Sleeping Around the Corner"
Artist: Lindsey Buckingham/Christine McVie

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Song of the Day: "Silver"

Katie Crutchfield is Waxahatchee and Out in the Storm is their (her) fourth album. She/they've made a few year-end lists in the past but I never took to the albums.

There's something about this track that is calling me.

Song: "Silver"
Artist: Waxahatchee

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Wrong Sentiment

Things people have said to me with the intent of conveying an idea that is the exact opposite of how I interpret what they have said:

  • Fuck fest: "It's a total fuck fest at the office today." Intended message: things are not going well at the office today. Inferred message: everyone is having a good time at the office today.
  • Family reunion: "We went to see En Vogue at the casino and ran into Mark, Marcus, Devin, Steve, Stephen and Stefan. It was like a family reunion." Intended message: it was fun seeing people they've known a long time but haven't seen recently. Inferred message: they spent time with people they don't particularly like but are expected to be pleasant to with regularity. 
  • Bright and sunny: "It's bright and sunny outside, let's do something productive." Intended message: the weather is conducive to being outside in the opinion of most people. Inferred message: it is bright and sunny outside so stay home in the dark room. 

Song of the Day: "Me and Your Mama"

Let us take a moment to consider what a great year Donald Glover is having. His series (as in he created and produces/writes/directs the show), Atlanta, received 6 Emmy nominations last week, including 4 for Glover (actor, writing, directing and Outstanding Comedy Series). He's got a small but memorable role in this week's #1 movie, Spider-Man: Homecoming.

And, because that's not enough, his album under the name Childish Gambino, Awaken My Love!, was just certified gold. That's not too impressive considering the Emmy stuff, but it does work nicely with song of the day, which is from that album.

Ta da!

Song: "Me and Your Mama"
Artist: Childish Gambino

Friday, July 21, 2017

Song of the Day: "DNA"

I'm giving Kendrick Lamar another chance. His DAMN album currently has the highest Metacritic composite score for new releases in 2017. He had the highest score for a new release in 2015 and #4 in 2012.

Still not feeling it.

Song: "DNA"
Artist: Kendrick Lamar

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Song of the Day: "Get High"

Funnily enough I found this Tom Williams song shortly after listening to Keith Urban and was expecting something vaguely new country-ish.

I was not expecting something Radioheadish.

Song: "Get High"
Artist: Tom Williams

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Song of the Day: "The Fighter"

Previously on the Rebel Agenda we discussed my theory that country music is just popular music performed by just the white ones. Here we have Keith Urban and Carrier Underwood making my point for me.

Song: "The Fighter"
Artist: Keith Urban/Carrie Underwood

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Song of the Day: "Something Good"

Instead of trying to be clever or even know WTF I'm talking about, I'll let a PR email take this one:

“Many of the songs on this record are speaking about friends of mine that have passed, but taught me a lot while they were here,” Austin-based songwriter, guitarist and record producer Stephen Doster explains of New Black Suit (Atticus Records, Aug. 25th), his second album after an 18-year release hiatus that ended in 2014 with the comeback album Arizona, which went on to be described as a “masterpiece” with “one charmed melody after another” by the Austin Chronicle.

Song: "Something Good"
Artist: Stephen Doster

Monday, July 17, 2017

Song of the Day: "What's That Perfume That You Wear?"

Have no idea about the pic, but it looks like they're having fun

Jens Lekman's return to the blog isn't just a song of the day; it might be the song of the summer. It takes nearly a minute to transform into the Technicolor Euro-conga song we all need right now, but when it does you'll wish you'd ordered the Mai Tai.

Song: "What's That Perfume That You Wear?"
Artist: Jens Lekman

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Song of the Day: "I Don't Ever Wanna Leave California"

Time will tell if Allison Crutchfield's distinctive vocals endure my esteem. Will she be a new Martha Wainwright or Jane Siberry or Neko Case? Or just another whatshername, you know, the one who sings those songs... forgettable.

Song: "I Don't Ever Wanna Leave California"
Artist: Allison Crutchfield

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Song of the Day: "Déjà Vu"

Is it just me, or does Roger Waters's voice here sound a bit like Warren Zevon's on The Wind?

The song was previously called "Lay Down Jerusalem (If I Had Been God)" and I have no idea why. It's not like a song with that title might be considered controversial (just antisemitic). Even mentioning the title, however obliquely, probably makes me a part of the alt-right (the fat gay part).

Song: "Déjà Vu"
Artist: Roger Waters

Friday, July 14, 2017

Song of the Day: "Praying"

I was prepared to continue stylizing Kesha's name with the dollar sign in lieu of an s (K dollar sign ha) but it appears she's not doing that now. If she can't be bothered, neither can I...

I'm curious about how Kesha's legal battles with her record label over alleged sexual assault from her producer comes forth in her first release since then. And here we are.

Song: "Praying"
Artist: Kesha

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Song of the Day: "Hungry Ghost"

At this point it's very likely that you know more about Hurray for the Riff Raff than me (than I?). The new album, The Navigator, is allegedly about the singer returning to her roots.

But you probably already know that.

Here's what I do know: this bassline is sick (if sick is good, I forget sometimes). It's intoxicating.

Song: "Hungry Ghost"
Artist: Hurray for the Riff Raff

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Song of the Day: "Homemade Dynamite"

I don't know what it is, but I'm liking this new album from Lorde far more than I did her debut.

Song: "Homemade Dynamite"
Artist: Lorde

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Song of the Day: "Me Enamoré"

It seems like just yesterday, when it was, in fact, 22 years ago, that Shakira's major label debut Pies Descalzos (translation: something about pies, I think) was released. Her label promoted her as the Spanish language Alanis Morissette because that's what record labels do: they try to get musicians to sound like recently popular musicians regardless of whether that fits their sound/act/temperament/shoe size.

Later she was promoted as the Spanish language Madonna, then the Spanish language Christina Aguilera (which might rightfully be Christina Aguilera, I don't know). These days she might be the Spanish language Adele. Her new album, El Dorado (translation: The Dorado) is mostly in Spanish, which is what the Spanish language Adele would do...

Song: "Me Enamoré"
Artist: Shakira

Monday, July 10, 2017

Song of the Day: "The Story of O.J."

This track from Jay-Z's 4:44 and samples Nina Simone heavily. It's a downbeat tune that stands out from what I'm familiar with from his body of work. I've heard The Blueprint is the shit.

Song: "The Story of O.J."
Artist: Jay-Z

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Skittles Comeback, Delayed

I wrote this last year, after Donald Trump Jr. made an analogy about his father's then-proposed ban on Muslims. If some Skittles are poison, you wouldn't serve any of the Skittles, he asserted. I posted this to Facebook only and I ran across it today and decided to post it in the place where I don't want to disown people I've know most of my life... my blog.

A couple of thoughts on Skittles and whether we, as a country, would or would not serve the  Skittles if 3 of the Skittles were poisoned.

People are embracing this as a acceptable proxy for a discussion on whether or not to allow refugees into this country. Obviously we should not. I'm already here. You're here too, probably. Everybody else can suck it.

Concern for others is not an American value. Now that our (yours and mine) immigration (however legal, big shrug) is settled, it's time to pull up the rope ladder into our tree house. We have an awesome tree house and it's time to stop with all the new people who might want in the tree house. Sure, we might, at some point, wish we'd left that rope ladder down when we need something specific, but that's just hypothetical conjecture, and hypothetical conjecture is for losers. Ahem.

1. Skittles actually are poison. 11 people died from anaphylactic reaction to Skittles (mostly the candy shell) in 2012. We're still serving Skittles. Shellfish, peanuts and tree nuts are far more likely to cause an allergic reaction. Are you still serving those? Shellfish is an abomination (read the Constitution), peanuts are a legume (watch Third Rock From the Sun), and tree nuts brighten up any number of recipes by adding a nice texture that doesn't need cooking and is difficult to overcook (note: "do not overcook" is the most unhelpful instruction I've ever read, yet it's on every frozen food item that gets heated). You're still serving those. Congratulations, you're with the terrorists, and all because you wanted some crunch in your summer salad and would never consider croutons because of your alleged gluten sensitivity (and it's not like you're going to use some old pieces of gluten-free bread to make your own because how do you even do that? [Dice bread, warm in oven, DO overcook]).

2. If, instead of poisoning people, Skittles could be thrown at someone and kill them, we wouldn't have a problem with that. Bullets, the Skittles of the fire arm world, kill tens of thousands of people every year, and not all of them were asking for it. When people die from a Skittle, Americans buy a lot more Skittles.

3. Skittles wouldn't be poisoned if to poison a Skittle you had to apply to become a Skittle, then wait 18 months to 2 years for your first screening to be a Skittle then you had to get screened by 5 additional entities, all focused on whether you have the potential to become a poison Skittle. And during this 3-7 year period, you have to live in a war zone or refugee camp. But to be a poison Hershey's Kiss all you have to do is apply for a tourist visa to visit Las Vegas or Disney or New York City or Branson or Kim Kardashian's next wedding (clearly gay marriage destroyed Brad and Angelina). Years become weeks and you're not subjected to being around all these would-be regular Skittles with whom you might become empathetic and turn your back on the poison Skittle movement (plus all they ever serve are legumes and you're really craving some kung Pao shrimp).

4. About 30 years ago, when I was, um, 4, my mother mixed a bag of Skittles (non-poison) and plain m&ms. They are a delightful combination of chocolate and fruit flavors. If you dig chocolate-dipped strawberries or orange wedges, try it. Mix equal parts Skittles and plain m&ms. Do not overcook. Michelle dubbed then S&Ms, and Jackie and I remember them fondly.

Musical Theater Therapy: "Feelin(g) Good"

From Eli Stone

Song of the Day: "Way Back"

TLC is back, despite the fact that they are, tragically, T_C these days.

Song: "Way Back"
Artist: TLC

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Song of the Day: "Americana"

This newish track from Ray Davies is unexpected, and a delight. Whether it fits the genre of its name per Grammy's definition isn't too important, but I can tell you it'll get a nomination there for sure.

Song; "Americana"
Artist: Ray Davies

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Musical Theater Therapy: "Jersey Boys Medley"

From, duh, Jersey Boys...

Song of the Day: "I Broke Up In Amarante"

And I broke down in Portland.

Los Campesinos! are back. The exclamation is built into the band's name, otherwise they might not get it.

Song: "I Broke Up In Amarante"
Artist: Los Campesinos!

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Musical Theater Therapy: "Come What May"

From Moulin Rouge!

Song of the Day: "Guilty Party"

It's always a good day when there's new music from The National... even when it's the fucking 4th of July with all the motherfucking fireworks.

I fucking hate fireworks.

Song: "Guilty Party"
Artist: The National

Monday, July 3, 2017

Song of the Day: "New York"

I'm not sure if St. Vincent (nee Anne Clark) is singing "you're the only motherfucker in the city who can stand me" or "who can stab me" but either way, I'm kinda digging this new release.

Although officially, I only like OLD York.

Song: "New York"
Artist: St. Vincent

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Notes on Baby Driver

Usually when I title a post "notes on" it's a recap of a movie considered with respect to possible Oscar action. This won't be that this time.  Not that there isn't some potential for Oscarness in the movie; it's just that I'm too tired to think about that and want to get some other stuff written down.

Disclaimer: there are probably a lot of spoilers here.

Double disclaimer: there is only on baby in the movie but it never drives. There is no baby driver in this film. Fail.

Baby Driver fails the Bechdel test... I think, I was in the rest room during the one scene in which both Love Interest to Male 1 and Love Interest to Male 2 appear, so it's possible that I missed the scene where the two discuss the lack of women on the Atlanta police force, and/or how lucky they are to both be under 35.

It also breaks the 10-year rule by pairing a 46 year old Jon Hamm with 27 year old Eiza González (who has the letter Z in her name 3 times) without acknowledging the age difference. If they'd cast Michelle Pfeiffer, someone I'm sure wasn't too busy to take on the role, the age difference would shrink from 19 years to 13 years. Do you suppose someone would wonder about that disparity? Here are some actresses who are more age appropriate for Hamm, who could easily pull of the demands of shooting a gun and kissing Jon Hamm, and who probably would have appreciated being in a high profile movie: Connie Britton, Shannen Doherty (oh, noes, Shannen is battling cancer, we can't have her missing treatments), Holly Marie Combs, Alyssa Milano, Jennie Garth, Courtney Thorne-Smith, Lisa Bonet, Sanaa Lathan, Samantha Morton, Michelle Rodriguez, Ashley Judd, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Lucy Liu, and one of the actresses that prompted me to create this rule in the first place, Samantha Mathis.

A review of the movie I read before seeing it praised the movie's driving scenes as artful and smart, contrasting them with Fast and/or Furious driving scenes that are comically unbelievable (or something like that, I've never seen an F&F movie). Compared to this or this BD's driving scenes seem over the top (although the first of those links includes scenes of a girl driving a getaway car which we all know is impossible).

The movie's blocking/choreography is wonderful and reminds me of Birdman in a good way. Anton Elgort is almost painfully cute in the title role. The rest of the cast do solid, but unexceptional, work.

The sophistication of Doc's (Kevin Spacey) mastermind planning is undermined by the ridiculously basic visuals drawn on his chalkboard and the seemingly trivial toy cars that are used as props a couple of times. The fact that, the minute it is time to clear out of the criminal lair, Spacey's character can be seen methodically packing up $4 worth of used Matchbox cars, instead of getting the fuck out of there, prompts me to ask this question using the parlance of a key scene in the movie: Is Doc retarded? It would explain the blackboard diagrams.

Who the fuck was the dude with the blue truck?

The 6 main characters were named Baby, Bats, Buddy, Darling, Deborah and Doc.

There is a TON of parking in downtown Atlanta these days.

There are some magnificent visuals in the movie: a shot that uses a side view mirror to paint a full picture in a stand-off, another of a wall filled with dryers tumbling loads of primary colored sheets are both really slick==are good justifications for ignoring the many points in the movie where people do very stupid or unbelievable things. I'm not sure a gender reversed version with Dakota Fanning or Sarah Hyland playing Baby would have been as easy to forgive. The wording is clunky on that, but the movie gets a lot of leeway for its stupidity and I doubt women or people of color would have gotten as much berth.

Kudos to whomever assemble the soundtrack and then cast Jon Spencer, Paul Williams, Big Boi and Killer Mike in cameos. Sky Ferreira is in this movie.

Musical Theater Therapy: "Enter You"

From Trick

Song of the Day: "Something Just Like This"

This collaboration between The Chainsmokers and Coldplay was featured during the NCAA basketing balls thing. It's a surprise I haven't heard it before today.

Song: "Something Just Like This"
Artist: The Chainsmokers/Coldplay

Friday, June 30, 2017

Musical Theater Therapy: "Home For Wayward Girls"

From Breakfast at Tiffany's the Musical

Song of the Day: "Roaming in Teesdale"

This is confusing when you factor in yesterday's song of the day... this is Black Hill & Cousin Silas.

Song: "Roaming in Teesdale"
Artist: Black Hill & Cousin Silas

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Song of the Day: "Tired Voice"

The dude from The March Divide almost died in Arizona. He didn't, but that near death experience inspired the Don't Let Me Die in Arizona EP from which this track is pulled.

Song: "Tired Voice"
Artist: The March Divide

Musical Theater Therapy: "Everything Taboo"

From Taboo

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Disappointing David Brooks, Part 413

David is disappointed and in Aspen

How are we disappointing David Brooks this week?

Well if you're a Republican politician he's disappointed that you hate Obamacare but weren't actually motivated to craft an alternative policy, you just pruned back the existing frame work. He's also a bit disdainful of the fact that you don't seem to realize the middle class is going bye bye. At least the "conservative policy johnnies" (I looked it up, and johnnies are the equivalent of "dudes" if you're George Will or David Brooks) at America's great conservative think tanks and institutes and what-nots understand that the working class is disappearing.

He also seems peeved that he's forced to bloviate from Aspen, Colorado, where he's probably attending the Aspen Ideas Festival, which is, as we all know, a festival of ideas held in Aspen. Duh.

Liberal politicians, working class Americans, civilians to the political wars, we're pretty much off the hook today... but watch yourselves (me too). Disappointing David is easy to do.

Musical Theater Therapy: "Georgy Girl"

Which is not from Georgy

Song of the Day: "Another Century"

The Church remain relevant decades after I last heard new music from them.

Song: "Another Century"
Artist: The Church

Monday, June 26, 2017

Musical Theater Therapy: "Picture This"

From Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark

Song of the Day: "The Gold"

Manchester Orchestra isn't an orchestra.

Manchester Orchestra isn't from Manchester. (Or aren't from...)

There are no horses in Band of Horses.

I don't know what to believe any more.

Song: "The Gold"
Artist: Manchester Orchestra

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Musical Theater Therapy: Oh, Streetcar!

From The Simpsons' "A Streetcar Named Marge"...

Song of the Day: "Cold Little Heart"

Apparently HBO's Big Little Lies was super popular with the listeners of KINK-FM, because while listening to the station during 10 hours of driving on Friday I think I heard this song 4 or 5 times.

Song: "Cold Little Heart"
Artist: Michael Kiwanuka

Monday, June 19, 2017

Song of the Day: "I Gotta Praise"

What's PD Heaton of the Beautiful South and the Housemartins up to these days? Glad you asked...

Song: "I Gotta Praise"
Artost: Paul Heaton/Jacqui Abbott

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Musical Theater Therapy: "Sunrise, Sunset"

From Fiddler on the Roof.

Song of the Day: "Fire"

When last we heard from Beth Ditto she was saying "Google me bitches" while Portland police officers were arresting her for drunk and disorderly conduct. Since then her band (or the band with whom she was affiliated), The Gossip, broke up and she created a fashion line for plus-sized women (and drag queens) who want that morning-after look the night before.

Frankly it's weird that she and I aren't besties...

Song: "Fire"
Artist: Beth Ditto

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Musical Theater Therapy: "Nothing"

From A Chorus Line.

Song of the Day: "White Man's World"

Holy shit, Jason Isbell! This, exactly this, instead of Lee Greenwood or Toby Keith. Jason Isbell and Sturgill Simpson.

Song: "White Man's World"
Artist: Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit

Friday, June 16, 2017

A Few Things About Guardians of the Galaxy 2: Electric Boogaloo

I often enthuse wildly about Marvel's casting when I write about the MCU movies. Kurt Russell as Ego, yes. We also see Karen Gillan shine. And Michael Rooker really shine. And Chris Platt with his shirt off.

I give the movie a B because giving it a B- seems really negative of me. There's a lot of fun to be had in the movie, but there is a whole boatload of stupid in there too.  So a B seems fair.

Seeing Sean Gunn in GotG movies is as consistently amusing/confusing to me as seeing Cobie Smulders in Avengers movies. At some point Ego was explaining his time on Earth to Peter Quill and said something about "that's how I met your mother" which, I'm sorry, that had to be intentional. Good for them.

Oh, Sean Gunn's brother is the writer/director of GotG.

Stan Lee and the Watchers: yes!

The wacky jump special effects, no.

Once upon a time, like 25+ years ago, Becky, Chris and I were discussing the term a ghey/homersexual/lezbean should call his/her significant other. It was a time when husband/wife weren't appropriate because they weren't that then. And boyfriend/girlfriend, it was decided, were too juvenile to use for a significant, life-partner-y person. And I don't think we had the term life partner in our vocabulary back then. It was one a classic Chris Wilson moment when he decided that a committed life-long partner should be a Hasselhoff. Which makes the fact that someone says something about someone else being a third person's Hasselhoff that much more profound and/or funny. James Gunn had been listening in on our decades old conversation.

The soundtrack to the first GotG was fantastic and won a Grammy. The soundtrack to this movie is fantastic and may win another Grammy. However... 2 songs that are used exceptionally well in the movie are undermined by other pop culture entities getting to them first: Cat Stevens's "Father and Son" and Fleetwood Mac's "The Chain". I'm struggling to recall where "Father and Son" recently crossed my path and made me sad as hell; "The Chain" was used beautifully in the "Walter Taffet" episode of The Americans (which is a current TV show that I am actually current on).

I'm glad they include Mantis and will have Adam Warlock in future films. I really really really think Moondragon needs to be in the mix. For fuck's sake, she's fought Thanos a bunch. Ugh.

Marvel must atone for that costume
Also, if you're immortal, but you can be killed, you're not actually immortal. Just saying. That a Celestial is taken down, in part, via sidearms really undermines the power he has (or should have based on established mythology). This was a minor annoyance in Wonder Woman as well (and will be especially annoying is Ares comes back in a future movie). It's possible to rationalize Quill vs. Ego as a battle between 2 equals with the assistance from the rest of the Guardians tipping the battle in his favor, but I've come up with that retroactively.

Also also, for fuck's sake, can we please significantly reduce the amount of shooting portrayed on film since no one seems to be able to hit anyone with their various weapons. Nebula strafing Gamora... it's like she went to Stormtrooper shooting school.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: movies can imagine a myriad of creatures and atmospheres, but a tree is a tree is a tree in every movie. Their leaves are always green and they have brown bark. Movie tress are actually less diverse than actual trees.

Musical Theater Therapy: "Close Every Door"

From Dreamcoat (which is short for Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat).

Song of the Day: "Just for Tonight"

Phoebe Hunt manages to sound both innocent and world-wise at the same time. Not an easy feat.

Song: "Just for Tonight"
Artist: Phoebe Hunt

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Song of the Day: "Forces of Decay"

This morning I thought to look for some new country artists and the results of that thought lead to the following observations:
  • White people: people decry contemporary country music as lacking authenticity or quality or charm or whatever. "Why is this considered country music?" It's not the first time a generation's music has been regarded poorly by older people. But what's been clear to me for a while is that country music is more than just a radio format, it's a way of life that marketers need to exploit and also only country music fans love their mamas. That's just a fact. "Hispanics and Blacks don't have faith or care about their families or even cook meals at home. Only white Real Americans value those things."
  • "Why is this considered country music?" very often has this answer: "because there are no black people involved with this song." I know, typical Jew York City elite liberal seeing racism where obviously none exists. "Note Charley Pride. Note Mickey Guyton. Note Darius Rucker. There has always been a black person in country music."--Bristol Herald Courier  Look closely at that sentence. There has always been a black person (singular) in country music. Just the one. "Try as we might we can't keep all of them out."
  • The clearest example of this not particularly veiled racism comes via the reception of these 2 performances: Sugarland covering "Irreplaceable" with Beyonce at the American Music Awards and the Dixie Chicks covering "Daddy Lessons" with Beyonce at the Country Music Awards. "You're confusing our continued pattern of finding everything black people do as objectionable even when we have no problem when white people do it, with racism. It's not racist, it's just a coincidence."
Which is a super circuitous way of getting to the band Rogue + Jaye (note the stylized use of "+" in the name) who Rolling Stone describes as sounding like "Belle and Sebastian's 'Sleep the Clock Around' recorded not in Glasgow but Laurel Canyon; if Sara Watkins made a duets album with Ben Gibbard, produced by Josh Ritter" to which I will also add "and they're both white*."

Song: "Forces of Decay"
Artist: Rogue + Jaye

* Note: while both Rogue and Jaye of Rogue + Jaye are white, I do not mean to suggest that they are in any way part of the subtle and not-so subtle racism that permeates every aspect of the country music lifestyle.

Musical Theater Therapy: "Nobody"

From Bandstand.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Song of the Day: "Swish Swish"

I'm really late on this Katy Perry/Nicki Minaj single. It's apparently a whole thing between someone I kinda like, songwriting-wise, and Perry. Minaj continues her zig-zagging between favorable and unfavorable points of esteem with me. This is not one of her high points.

I'm only sharing the song because the proto-90s club beat that kicks in at 1:00 is the fucking bomb!

Song: "Swish Swish"
Artist: Katy Perry/Nicki Minaj

Musical Theater Therapy: "Face to Face"

From War Paint; regularly therapy here.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Song of the Day: "Drawn"

De La Soul's And the Anonymous Nobody album was borne of improv sessions, many of which included collaborators like this track featuring Swedish EDM band Little Dragon. It's rich and lovely, just like me.

Song: "Drawn"
Artist: De La Soul/Little Dragon

Saturday, June 10, 2017

For Your Consideration: Master of None

Outstanding Comedy Series
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series: Aziz Ansari
Outstanding Direction in a Comedy Series: "New York, I Love You"
Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series: "New York, I Love You"
Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series: "Thanksgiving"
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series: Angela Bassett, "Thanksgiving"
Outstanding Cinematography for a Single-Camera Series: "The Thief"
Outstanding Editing for a Single-Camera Comedy Series: "New York, I Love You"
Outstanding Sound Editing for a Comedy Series: "New York, I Love You"

The first season of Master of None impressed me with its unabashedly romantic nature. I'd mistakenly assumed Ansari would provide a snarky or cynical voice. I was unprepared for how much more the show embraces and accomplishes in its second season.

Season 2 brings the sentimentality again, adds in an array of homages to indie and art films, tells stories of and champions people rarely represented by mainstream media, and showcases Ansari's genuine talent as an actor.

There is a confidence that permeates the season, and there's richness to be found in silence, in dialogue in Italian or sign language, and in the performances by actors who are rarely seen in network shows and would be lucky to have a single line of dialogue (I think you can watch any 8 episodes of Sex and the City, Friends, Will and Grace, Seinfeld, Everybody Loves Raymond and Frasier without being distracted by a person of color saying too much).

And as with the first season, actors over the age of 60 get to do and say things that go beyond rapping granny (although the grandmother in "Thanksgiving" did play in the "granny who swears" trope).

The season eschews a consistent formula/format and that free form nature makes every episode more, I'm not sure what word I want here: vibrant, special, unique... any of those.

With last year's Emmy awards, the show's 4 nominations (including Outstanding Comedy Series) were rewarding. That it won for Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series was a delight. I'm expecting more from ATAS this year, and I think the show's critical acclaim supports that expectation. Don't let me down...

Musical Theater Therapy: "Drive It Like You Stole It"

from the movie Sing Street.

Song of the Day: "Heart Break"

The title track from Lady Antebellum's forthcoming album.

Song: "Heart Break"
Artist: Lady Antebellum

Friday, June 9, 2017

Musical Theater Therapy: "Ring of Keys"

From the musical Fun Home.

Disappointing David Brooks, Part 408

David is disappointed

How are we disappointing David Brooks this week?

So many ways... but mostly he has to put on his "I told you so" rimless glasses so he can point out that, duh, nothing that came out during Comey's testimony represents an impeachable offense (no lying under oath in a civil lawsuit here) which may seem obvious to you since, if there was a smoking gun, things probably would be much further along. And if the smoking gun don't fit (or isn't present at that particular hearing), it probably doesn't even exist, which is fine because Trump himself is such a disappointment to Brooks that his future implosion will probably incur something like an exasperated orgasm.

Also Donald Trump lies. You probably didn't know that which is why Brooks is reduced to saying it so many times. Please pay more attention.

Also also, Donald Trump has this weird need for validation and attention (which may or may not be the same thing). You probably haven't noticed that yet either, so really, pay at least a modicum of attention please.

We live in an dignified society with an orderly, organized government so please be more like that polite, professional James Comey.

Summary of the David Brooks Hierarchy of Allegiance

Song of the Day: "The One 2"

!!! (pronounced "chk chk chk" and otherwise nearly impossible to do traditional database searches on) are back with a sweet track and video. Also they moved to Portland to be closer to me. Sigh.

Song: "The One 2"
Artist: !!!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Song of the Day: "Blood Under My Belt"

The Drums are coming in concert. If I go will it live up to the homoerotic promise that I imagine based on their videos?

Song: "Blood Under My Belt"
Artist: The Drums

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Song of the Day: "Trick"

Matthew Sweet returns with a kickstarted album.

Song: "Trick"
Artist: Matthew Sweet

Monday, June 5, 2017

The Venn Screams U-S-A U-S-A

Those screams are a cry for help.

Wonderful Woman Is More Like It

I am very pleased with Wonder Woman, the long-awaited theatrical release bringing a bit of equity to the DC trinity. It's 1 out of 15 movies (since the 1978 Superman), but 1 out of 7 if you only go back to 2005 (14%). Not bad when you consider that the in-theater audience for superhero movies is usually only 40% female, because girls, amirite?

Wonder Woman is a character that suffers from weak editorial vision at DC (see also: Superman). DC tried rebooting her many times. They tried her as a blonde. They tried her in flats.

But they always stay true to her core character traits: bullet-stopping bracelets, a golden lariat that compels truth, and attire inappropriate for someone who intends to fight in any capacity. It's strange that girls don't embrace a culture that treats them with such dignity. I'm sure men wouldn't mention it if the situation was reversed.

Wow, this picture is straight out of a dream I had in 1982. And 1983 through 2005 and a few more times since then. This one is also pretty good.

Where was I? Oh, right, good movie. I am impressed with the direction from Patty Jenkins, whose other feature, Monster, I did not see. I compared a few scenes favorably with some scenes from Steven Spielberg (granted, I don't really like his movies) and wondered why she's been hiding her light under a bushel for the last 13 or 14 years. When I mentioned that to my mom she replied that it likely wasn't by choice. She made an Oscar-winning indie film that earned $60 million on a budget of $8 million, let's not do anything crazy. Who does she think she is?

And it's not like Patty did nothing between 2003 and 2017. She had a kid. And she directed the episode of Arrested Development with the show's second highest ratings of ever, ever; and two episodes of Entourage, so let's stop talking about her.

Gal Gadot, who was in some of the $1.5 billion (with a b) Fast and Furious franchise movies (or so I am told), is great in the role. She beat out Chippy Chapman, Toots Magee and Bimbo Billingsley for the coveted part of third fiddle in the Justice League movies movie. Chris Pine is perfectly adequate as Lionel Waggoner. Other people are in the cast and are pretty solid.

The story is solid with a slightly predictable plot twist (imagine if they'd gone a different way). I'm happy they used Ares and not Cheetah or Giganta. I'm sure Cheetah is coming.

If the movie has a flaw, it's that the urgency of the mission wasn't SO urgent that there couldn't be a shopping montage (chick flicks, amirite). If the movie has 2 flaws it's that and the score which seems to vary between combat, pensively combative and combatitively pensive.

I really enjoyed the movie. It was worth the effort to leave the house and deal with others. If Chris Pine appears in any future Wonder Woman or Wonder Woman-related movies, I will rescind this enthusiasm.

Song of the Day: "Dive"

In looking for a video I could embed, Google refused to believe I wanted "St. Etienne Dive" and kept returning links related to their live concert schedule.

Song: "Dive"
Artist: St. Etienne

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Musical Theater Therapy: "Tour De France"

From the musical Amélie.

When You Gotta Go...

CASH Music is a non-profit that's working to create and provide open source tools and information for musicians, along with advocacy on behalf of musicians with respect to issues that affect them in the digital era, like net neutrality and covfefe. Sorry, it's late here; I'm punchy.

Years ago I donated money, a Kickstarter-type thing, to help CASH Music get going. I reached out to them, intending to volunteer writing documentation for their tools. Or I meant to but didn't. Either way I never heard back from them, so it's entirely on them that I didn't do that.

An occasional email from CM would show up reminding me of their existence which would last a few hours, probably.

I think I got to pick a thank you from the whatever level I donated at. Let's say the Marvin Gaye level. It's very possible there was a t-shirt and that the size options meant that Clark got that shirt. Which is fine.

At some point I started following a dude on Twitter with the too cool to be real name of Jesse Von Doom PhD. Dr. Von Doom. I know there were a few times over the course of Twitter life when I'd remember that he was with CM and different times when I'd remember that he is in Portland. So he's a neighbor.

Blah blah blah, he's leaving his role as Executive Director of CM (remaining on its board) and the whole reason I'm even writing this post is that I love his post announcing his departure and I want to have it available to shamelessly steal aspects of it for my later use.

The full post is here. I'm copying the content without formatting below.

Well… gotta go.
The shortest possible version: I resigned my role as Executive Director of CASH Music, Maggie’s in charge, and I plan to vigorously support her from the board of the organization.
It was October 2007. The Red Sox were playing Cleveland in the ALCS. Joe Castiglione was telling me all about it from the shitty AM radio in my friend Jack’s car. We were driving back home to Rhode Island from New York where CMJ had just wrapped. I saw the best Xiu Xiu show I’ve ever seen and sang the worst karaoke you could imagine. I also met Maggie Vail for the first time in person on that trip, but it’s not time for that part of the story yet.
Jack had this story about a friend who would drive up to a toll booth, pay the fare, then say “well…gotta go” as he drove off.
It’s funnier when he tells it.
But here we are at a toll booth so we decide it’s time for us to be cool. Neither of us had ever really been cool so we thought we’d give it a try. Jack pays and says “well…” I finish it with “gotta go.”
Jack missed the gear. The engine revved. We didn’t go anywhere. Makes a better story in retrospect, and it’s a good reminder that sometimes shit just doesn’t go the way you had hoped.
That trip was the first I made as part of CASH Music, only a few months into a ten year journey. This is my last post as Executive Director of CASH. This isn’t the ending I had hoped for, but it’s been a great fucking story.
Here’s the real talk part: it’s a bad time to be a small nonprofit. Revenue is down. Giving is gone. Focus is nonexistent. CASH doesn’t have the budget to support a full staff and I’ve taken on a lot of personal debt to subsidize my work on CASH Music. I’m not in a position to continue, and to be blunt: I carry a lot of intellectual baggage after ten years. A change in leadership is for the best of the organization.
Leaving CASH Music is bittersweet but I’m nothing but thrilled to say that Maggie will take the Executive Director position and make this organization I love so dearly her own. She has a vision for where CASH needs to go, a plan to revitalize the organization, and my full support.
I’ll still work as a volunteer to help guide the CASH Music platform development and I’ve taken a seat on the board. I’m not gone, but it’s time for me to play a support role for Maggie and I ask that you do the same. The mission of finding open and sustainable career options for artists is vital now more than ever. It’s getting dark here in America, and artists hold the light that can lead us to better times. The idea of CASH Music more important than you realize.
A few things before I go:
  • If you work in the music industry: stop being so fucking stupid. Stop letting startups fool you over and over again, building the longest daisy chain of middlemen the world has ever seen. Collaborate on open technology and use your shared strength to compete.
  • I mean I get it: fuck this president. But while you’re out there working to #resist you need to work for a world you want to live in. Don’t just look to fight against the things that make you sad. Look to support the things that bring you joy.
  • Buy music.
  • Buy music from musicians.
  • Buy music from musicians at their shows.
  • Buy music from musicians at their shows and on their websites.
  • Thank the people who inspire you. They don’t hear it as much as you’d think and there’s no shortage of assholes tearing them down.
  • Fight for a fair, free, neutral, and inclusive Internet.
  • Eat more vegetables.
I’m not sure how to end this other than to say, simply, thank you.

Dolly is how he ended the post. And Carly Simon is how I'm ending this post about his post.

Song of the Day: "Still Summer"

Matt Pond says that after the tour for Matt Pond PA's 12th album, Still Summer, concludes, Matt Pond PA will be no more.

It's weird when the dude's name is the band's name, right?

Still, sounds like he/they're going out on a high note based on this track.

Song: "Still Summer"
Artist: Matt Pond PA

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Musical Theater Therapy: "Recit de Cassard"

From The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, part of Musical Theater Therapy's Paris in Spring Thing.

A Quick Guide to Mento*

I've been watching Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law on Hulu for the last few hours. If I haven't enthused about the show directly to you I will do so now: the show is a brilliantly imagined look at the post-superhero life of Birdman (no relation to this), now an attorney in the Hanna-Barbera shared continuity, wherein Birdman (Harvey to friends) represents many characters in a variety of exploits.

By the way, Harvey Birdman, HB; Hanna-Barbera, HB... thoughts?

The show features great voice work from Gary Cole, Steven Colbert, Peter MacNichol and John Michael Higgins as Mentok. I love Higgins as Mentok, especially the character-supplied sound effects. It inspires me to add my own sound effects to everyday tasks, a thing I need to avoid doing if I ever hope to gain real employment ever again.

* The asterisk in this post's title is meant to indicate a wildcard character and not a footnote, even though I'm posting a footnote for it.

The Unimaginable Fuck Revisited

A few days later and the events from last Friday that began with an Islamophobic and anti-immigrant rant directed at 2 teenage girls (TEENAGE GIRLS for fuck's sake) by a white supremacist twice their age, and which ended with 2 men dead, one critically injured, and (thankfully) the attacker arrested are now more frustrating than confusing.

This article breaks down the events.
Passengers Best, Namkai-Mache and a third man, Micah David-Cole Fletcher, 21, were trying to deescalate the tense situation, intervene and get Christian off the train, she said. Macy said she didn't know where the two teenage girls who were the target of his racist rants were seated. She said it appeared as if the men who were stabbed "were trying to be a barrier'' between Christian and the girls.
I take solace knowing that the headline might have read "commuters watch in horror as 2 girls killed."

The more I learn about the 3 men who stood between the attacker and the girls, the more my heart beams at their deed and their character. It's as though their backstories, each with Portland flair, had been written after the attack: an award winning poet with a history of addressing Islamophobia, a city employee who was a coworker to friends of mine, and a Reed College graduate with an inexplicable name whose last words bring tears to my eyes when I consider them.
"Tell everyone on this train I love them."--Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche
I can imagine my last words as a variation: "tell everyone on this train to go fuck themselves."

He was 23 years old and his final words are those of a man at one with serenity.

In the chaos of the attack, several people stepped up to help the victims heroes or to ensure that the attacker wouldn't get away. Giving comfort to the dying is such a considerate thoughtful magnanimous act. First aid, yes, I would have had the presence of mind to do what I could with first aid, and/or pursuing the attacker (not capturing him, mind you, and likely to be too winded after 1/4 of a block to keep up). I am considerate, but I tend toward the... not sure if pragmatic or utilitarian is the right word... I'll go with utilitarian because that means practical but not necessarily attractive.

Adding to my to-do list: be more mindful about being more mindful.

Also: figure out some last words that will make everyone think I'm great.

Mayor Ted Wheeler continues a string of bad decisions by requesting that the Feds rescind permits for an alt-right a white supremacist rally scheduled for this weekend. Why he couldn't just ask Portland Police to handle that rally the same way they handle peaceful liberal gatherings is beyond me.

The Oregon ACLU now gets to fight for the alt-right's right to party. They have so much other shit to deal with right now that they shouldn't have to address this too.

Song of the Day: "The Ultimate Jedi Who Wastes All the Other Jedi and Eats Their Bones"

When you're a Jedi you're a Jedi all the way, from your first light saber to that time you're cut in half after vowing to come back more powerful than ever only that never really happened, did it.

Song: "The Ultimate Jedi Who Wastes All the Other Jedi and Eats Their Bones"
Artist: Mountain Goats

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Song of the Day: "LIFE, LIFE"

Ryuichi Sakamoto released his first solo album in 8 years recently. One of the few tracks with vocals reunites him with David Sylvian. It lacks the ethereal brilliance of their earlier collaborations, possibly because the lyrics are a poem by Russian poet Arseny Tarkovsky (although it stands to reason that if it's a poem, it's by a poet; that he's Russian might have been clear from the name).

I was hoping for more of a "Madonna when she's produced by William Orbit" kind of thing.

Song: "LIFE, LIFE"
Artist: Ryuichi Sakamoto/David Sylvian

Monday, May 29, 2017

Musical Theater Therapy: "New York, New York"

From On the Town...

Song of the Day: "Anymore"

I know I should appreciate Goldfrapp more than I do, but she/they are burdened by this vague association of the moody electronic sound with some European auto racing video game that I hallucinate.

Song: "Anymore"
Artist: Goldfrapp

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Musical Theater Therapy: "Maria"

A song I'd always thought was called "How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?" but it's not... from The Sound of Music

Bonus: peer feedback for Maria K

Song of the Day: "Tired as Fuck"

Who can say why YouTube recommended this track by The Staves to me: probably my eager ear. 

The band is composed of 3 sisters who "are vocal in challenging tropes about sensitive wilderness-bound artists that dominate modern folk music culture." 


Saturday, May 27, 2017

Friday, May 26, 2017

What the Unimaginable Fuck

Today is the one-year anniversary of the day I took Clark to the airport to move back to Dallas ("temporarily"--that was the euphemism we used, to make it easier to manage; I planned to pick him up Labor Day weekend, which would have been the 11-year anniversary of his first visit to Portland). At 8:30 p.m. he collapsed in the kitchen. I almost cancelled his flight.

At 5 a.m. Sunday morning I got a message from his sister-in-law that he was in worse shape than they expected. The message seemed vaguely accusatory but whatever. I've been treated far worse by some of his family. If you don't listen to someone when they explain how shitty things are, you're likely to be really surprised.

I went through something similar, talking to him during a drive between my mom's and my dad's earlier that spring. Some pretty frank talk about how the cancer was expected to play out for him. I knew it, or at least I suspected most of it. But unadorned with optimism or hope, it had a weight to it.

Despite our plans, we were rushing when we got to the airport. Portland closes one of its 2 security checkpoints around 10 p.m. They close the one close to the gate for the PDX to DFW red eye, so we'd get a wheel chair (sometimes with an official person, but in my time of impatience I just grabbed one and pushed him). The airline would issue me a pass to accompany him to the gate, but my TSA Pre didn't help me or him.

The last time through they acted like no one had ever traveled with a catheter before. Fuckers.

Once through we had to hurry back the width of the airport and then head down to the A terminals. He was concerned I was going to have a coronary as we rushed. They were boarding when we got to the gate. Early boarding for people who need extra time, and he needed extra time.

There was no time to dwell on goodbye. That may have saved us both from a big scene. Plus it was only temporary.

So I'm wistful today, considering Portland as this place of myth. A place that made me so happy and then made Clark so happy, but that now feels like a place that's tainted. Within the liberal mecca of Portland in the Bizarro universe of President Trump, 3 men were stabbed, 2 fatally, on their Friday afternoon commute home. They were coming to the defense of 2 women, assumed to be of Middle Eastern descent, whom the (alleged) attacker was verbally attacking.
"Get off the bus, and get out of the country because you don’t pay taxes here!" 
He said he doesn’t like Muslims because they’re criminals.

Okay, first, they weren't even on the bus. Dumbass mother fucker.

Second, yeah, they probably do pay taxes here. Not that they need to pay taxes to avoid being attacked on the bus train.

And finally, to prove how much they are criminals, he killed 2 and wounded a third. Well done dude.


I don't even know what to do with this shit. I'm not helping with this, but I wanted to remember Clark's departure while I think of it. The attack thing, fuck, I don't know how to deal with this shit.

Here's something that always made me and Clark laugh. Let's laugh for a minute...

Musical Theater Therapy Redux: "Belle"

The song being parodied by "Bonjour Girl" from Beauty and the Beast...

Musical Theater Therapy: "Bonjour Girl"

A parody from Beauty and the Beast...

Song of the Day: "Pay the Man"

F the Peeps (Foster the People) take us into the season of "summer music."

Song: "Pay the Man'
Artist: Foster the People