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Saturday, January 19, 2008

Gutbucket Scratchy Blues

When I saw the headline to this post on Boing Boing, Delta blues and Tuvan throat-singing, my ears perked up and my eyes popped out of my head.

You had me at Delta blues.

This Tuvan throat-singing thing, though, I didn't know too much about it. Thanks to wikipedia, I have a rudimentary understanding of it, but thanks for Paul Pena, the blind bluesman in the post, I have a new appreciation of it. I downloaded a couple of his songs, including this one (Kargyraa Moan) from Spider Robinson's podcast, and put Genghis Blues at the top of my Netflix queue.

Listen to the song. It's good.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Random Friday Ten

I'm getting the jump on it this week.

1) When the Music's Over - The Doors (This should count as two, but oh well.)
2) Fiddle and Drum - A Perfect Circle
3) All Your Love - Otis Rush
4) Take the A Train - Duke Ellington
5) I Got Rambling on My Mind - Otis Spann (Muddy Waters' awesome piano player)
6) Manic Depression - Jimi Hendrix
7) Wasted Sacrifice - Killswitch Engage
8) Comedown - Bush
9) How Blue Can You Get? - B.B. King
10) A Night in Tunisia - Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie (A live cut, even)

Averting Catastrophe

I almost lost the story I've been working on last night and I still don't know what happened. All I can say is that the flash drive on which I had saved the file just went stupid. I got an error I had never seen before and Word closed the file. I checked the drive again, and it was gone! It was like Word said, "Nut uh, you ain't get that shit back, man."

Almost 5000 words, gone. The partial narratives for four scenes, blanked out, the new stuff which was sounding so good, erased. It was dispiriting for a few moments, but I mined the temp file and managed to recover it all. I made back-up copies immediately and now that I think of it, I should print the thing out.

When I finish the first draft, I'll put it up here, along with my story notes and some pictures of the places around town where the action takes place. Of course, that might be a while. I remember telling my cousin Josh I was working on this story on Thanksgiving, so...

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Greetings From Aurora

A couple weeks ago, I got a postcard out of the blue from my friend Ginger. It was hilarious.

I tried to return the favor, but apparently the Post Office didn't like the postcard I sent.


Speaking of, Ginger's got a blog now and you should go ahead and put her in your blogroll now. Save yourself the trouble later.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Shoot Em Up

So I watched Shoot Em Up last night, and I have to say, my new favorite super hero is Clive Owen.

A couple thoughts after watching it:

1) Monica Belluci is yummy.

2) There are more gunfights than plot points, but the overall theme of the movie is ultra liberal. The bad guys are evil gun manufacturers and corrupt politicians and the good guy chomps on organic carrots (that he grows in tires no less!) and protects defenseless women and children at great sacrifice to himself. At one point Clive Owen says, and I'm paraphrasing, "Don't trust anyone's who looking to turn a profit."

3) Towards the end of the movie, Clive Owen's lines become variations of "You know what I hate?" After a witty and cleverly written explanation of what it is he hates, he then kills the man doing it. He's a hater, basically.

And looking over some of my recent posts, I realize I am too. "3 Inches of Suck." "Meet Doug Bruce: Another Asshole Politician." I'm a hater.

I've been trying to consciously be more positive, but then...well, I find something to hate.

The Italian food I got tonight...hated it. Calm down on the spices, man. Like I want to eat pasta that looks like it was dumped on the grass. Fresh is good, but a little rosemary goes a long way.

3:10 to Yuma, which I also saw recently, I didn't hate it, but also didn't like the ending. It might have even ruined the movie for me.

So I'm a hater... but at least I don't kill people.

Fascists. So Far Left...They're Right Wing

While I respect Andrew Sullivan and Ross Douthat's reluctance to slam Jonah Goldberg's book before reading it, I have no such qualms. The essence of Goldberg's book from the advertising copy on Amazon:
Fascism was an international movement that appeared in different forms in different countries, depending on the vagaries of national culture and temperament. In Germany, fascism appeared as genocidal racist nationalism. In America, it took a “friendlier,” more liberal form. The modern heirs of this “friendly fascist” tradition include the New York Times, the Democratic Party, the Ivy League professoriate, and the liberals of Hollywood. The quintessential Liberal Fascist isn't an SS storm trooper; it is a female grade school teacher with an education degree from Brown or Swarthmore.
Say what?

You can twist yourself into all kinds of knots to make the case that the modern liberal is the great-grandchild of Mussolini and Hitler, but I mean, come on. Really? Fascism has always been an ultra-right wing ideology. And you know, that's not really all that controversial. You want to flunk your poli-sci class? Write a paper saying fascism is a left-wing philosophy.

I don't think Goldberg is really trying to make a serious argument here. I don't even think he's trying to change the definition of "fascism" or "liberal," which is really the only way his argument can retain any kind of coherency.

He's just doing some school-yard level name-calling. He might as well have called his book "I Know You Are, But What Am I?"

Monday, January 14, 2008

The Rules of Inebriation

It sucks to be Roger Avary right now.

Let's say you're a semi-genius film-maker responsible for some very interesting movies. You wrote the Butch sequence in Pulp Fiction, say. Or you made a little bank heist movie called Killing Zoe. Let's even say you put together a movie based on a Brett Easton Ellis novel with touches of cinematic brilliance called The Rules of Attraction. Yeah, you're good.

So you're hanging out with your buddy from Italy one night. Your wife's there too, and you're drinking some wine maybe. Maybe you skip the wine and just have a few beers. Alright, so maybe you're sucking down shots like they're breath mints and you're so drunk you can't see anything.

However it goes, you gotta go. So you grab the wife, grab the buddy from Italy, grab the keys and off you go. But you're drunk and you can't see and the roads all twisty and you get confused and BAM, you slam into a tree.

Your wife goes flying out the window into the darkness, your buddy from Italy is splattered on the dashboard, but you...you're just fucked.

I'm sure there's a lesson in all that somewhere...

Meet Doug Bruce: Another Asshole Politician

Doug Bruce is a dick.

Who's Doug Bruce you ask? He's the newest member of Colorado's House of Representatives (State version, not Federal). He also requested...no, demanded...a swearing-in ceremony in front of the full house, which was denied.

Still smarting a little over this perceived slap in the face, Bruce was sworn in this morning...in front of a few friends, a few fellow legislators, and some reporters.

One of the reporters, a photographer for the Rocky Mountain News, took this picture during the prayer.
Bruce then kicked him.

Okay, so kick might be a strong word. Let's just say he not-so-gently gave the guy a toe nudge. Here's the video.

What the fuck?!

A state senator kicking a reporter? Saying, "I told you not to do that?" Who the fuck do you think you are, buddy? You weren't even elected! A grown man acting like a petulant child thinking he can tell another grown man what to do? When that man was just doing his job?!

To use Hulk Hogan's phrase (which I didn't hear once on American Gladiators tonight...yes, I watched) unbelievable!

I have to hand it to the photographer guy. If it had been me, I would have been in his face. I doubt I would have gone for his throat... I'm just not that kind of dude, but I can't imagine just taking that with a shrug. Words would be exchanged, probably in loud angry tones.

Unfortunately, Bruce will be us for the next eight years, though I doubt he lasts that long. The guy was just sworn in this morning and he's already been a pain the ass to everyone, including his fellow Republicans, who said that if Bruce wasn't sworn in today, they'd give the job to someone else. (Yeah, he's an appointment.)

Here's hoping he doesn't last that long.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Mugged by Reality

I must admit a certain pleasure upon hearing about Glenn Beck's disastrous hemorrhoid surgery. Not because the surgery was bad, but because it put right in his face an issue that us moonbat lefty's have been harping about for some time: The sad state of our healthcare system.

Hell, Michael Moore, the moonbattiest of the moonbats, even made a frigging movie about it.

Glad to see that Glenn is finally picking up on it...

Here's Glenn's account of his horrible hospital experience. His conclusion? Here ya go:
Our politicians are right; we do have a health care crisis in this country. But it's not going to be fixed by them, it's not going to be fixed by some government agency, and it's certainly not going to be fixed by throwing more money around. No, if you really want to fix our healthcare system then look no further than the word "healthcare" itself because the secret is right there.
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The secret is "care." After all, at the lowest of my lows, it didn't matter to me whether the hospital had marble in its bathrooms or plasma televisions on all its walls. The only thing I cared about was finding someone who actually cared about me.
So you want a little care with your healthcare, Glenn?

Hate to say it, buddy, but that's going to cost extra...

Tell ya what. Get yourself a home equity loan and buy some better insurance! I hear that's always an option...

(Doh!)

100 Years, 100 People, 1 Drum

I saw this video on a couple of blogs and enjoyed it so much I'm putting it up on my own.

My favorite one is the old lady near the end. "I'm 91, playing the drums." That one makes me smile all the time.

The Play-off Picture

I didn't have much to quibble with for Saturday's games. I'm thrilled that the Packers have a chance to make it to another Super Bowl and hope they do. Favre's having a great year and I wouldn't be mad if he got another ring. He's been one of the NFL's genuinely great players for over a decade now and I like to see those guys get their due.

I'm also glad the Patriots won, seeing as they are unquestionably the best team in the league this year. Their win-loss average (all wins, no losses) speaks for itself. These guys are the real deal.

But today....nothing but disappointment.

The Chargers beat the Colts? Whuh? At least Phillip Rivers limped off the field. That guy's a dick.

And then the Giants took out the Cowboys? Noooooo. I was actually hoping Dallas would represent the NFC in the Super Bowl and I say that even as an out-of-the-closet TO hater. I can't stand Tom Coughlin and the Giants of today bore me. At least with the Cowboys, things might be exciting.

My Super Bowl picks: New England versus Green Bay and the Patriots take it.