Monday, February 28, 2011

it's all blueprint, it must be easy...

I was in line at the bank this weekend listening to old men talk about how it sucks that people are revolting in Libya because that means their gas prices are going up. "I'm for freedom fighters and all, but I gotta fill my gas tank too."

I couldn't shake the depression this weekend, forcing myself to not be alone with my unproductive thoughts, not wanting to explain and articulate because my jaw is sore and I wonder if I'm just adding to the noise, if I've been doing it wrong, if what seems to make sense now will be something I will regret later.

Because I can't play these games of ladder climbing and career hopping and what people call love but usually ends up being a total mess full of regret. I'm just not interested in dealing with that. I can't compete and it doesn't look fun or fulfilling. I've got no debt, I can sustain myself and have enough to share, I've got creative outlets and spiritual sustenance. I wonder if I'm crazy for not trying harder, if I'm just another slacker wasting my life like all the burnouts I used to hang with, or if this kind of race is even the one I should bother running.

"I'm not playing with you / I clean forgot how to play....we'll draw a blueprint, it must be easy, it's just a matter of knowing when to say no or yes. frustrating, frustrating, always waiting for the bigger axe to fall.

a patient game that i can't find my way to play. never mind what's been selling, it's what you're buying and receiving undefiled..."

Friday, February 25, 2011

ice cold ice cold ice...

I feel bad for my fellow peons who were on their way to work or already there before the powers that be decided to close down for the day. I woke up to my bed shaking and the house shaking, hoping that since it's a hundred years old it's been through these kind of things before.

The salt of the earth people don't get days off like this, the trucking company next door is busy, my dad is still working and so is my kind-of-dad-in-law, while yours truly is chilling at home drinking tea and listening to music.

I could rant about the idiocy in my country and the world right now but I think I'm going to get some things cleaned up, get my paints out, and use this day more wisely since I've already slept away the morning. Noisy guitars, dreamy vocals, and hopefully some beauty created as a result...

Thursday, February 24, 2011

caffeine dreams

My day ended better than it started, with making art and then dinner, tea, late night conversations that I thrive on. It's rare to find other souls with whom I can angst, ponder, and laugh, and getting to do that is one of those things that keeps me alive. We know we can't figure out the meaning to life, the universe, and everything, but there's enough moments of clarity and sudden illumination that come from sorting through all the cultural clutter and intellectual junk that's piled up over our last two decades to make the process seem worthwhile.

And I'm back at the place of employment, plotting out future creative directions, maintaining a steady intake of caffeine, learning the hard way that finely ground Yemeni coffee does not work in the coffeepot, but that's probably just as well, because our favorite-would-be-funny-if-people-weren't-dying-rogue-leader thinks that Bin Laden's come out of his mancave to drug the Nescafe.

Those crazy kids and their Nescafe and bath salts and Four Loko and whatnot. Serious Delirium.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

and I say I don't like it, I know I don't want it...

There's no sound worse than the dentist's drill going down into your jaw, looking up and seeing gloves flecked with blood. "You did so well," she says as I spit pieces of broken molar into the sink and mentally curse my irresponsible youth, family genes, and the past three years full of car crashes and stress that wreaked general havoc on my little snarky mouth, while thankful to have insurance and live in an industrialized country where there's things like local anesthesia even if half my face is temporarily paralyzed and my grin has a glint of silver in the back like a fortuneteller's.

I'm uncharacteristically bitchy today, still sore, unable to wake up despite having coffee in my system, contending with "I'm fighting the system even though I'm totally the Man and don't even see it" boomers way too early in the morning. Quoting Jim Morrison like it's new and fresh and deep was the last straw and I got a bit more vitriolic than usual. Maybe it's the residual Novocaine still coursing through my bloodstream that made my lips get a little looser but given that I smile so much, most of the snark and generational antipathy went unnoticed.

when the fact of the matter is you just don't care
to comprehend or understand a single word I say

Seriously, I just want to go home and listen to the Bad Brains right now.

The sunlight coming through the ice-covered trees was so amazing that despite my wooziness and aching jaw, I drank tea with my adopted aunt and then drove along Riverside after seeing the the Valley was closed off and took lots of pictures of glittering branches.

Oh well, life goes on. I'll feel better tomorrow.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

playlist 2/22/11

cinematic orchestra - lilac wine
Corin Tucker - handed love
Djeli Moussa - almany
Bassekou Kouyate - turin turin
(Ethiopiques vol 10) - teredtchewalehu
ahmad adaweay - el sah el sah emtou
keur moussa - nicono creed
dwelling - fujo de mi
pharaoh's daughter - by way of haran
niyaz - hejran
matelo ferret - pouro Rom
rokia traore - souba
BLK JKS - lakeside
Cafe Tacuba - Encantamiento Inutil
Jeff Buckley - mojo pin
petch phin tong - soul lam phearn
dead meadow - at her open door
the black angels - black grease
coloracao desbotada - extenso ambiente
firefriend - free form future
the soft boys - I wanna destroy you
the Dirtbombs - Ode to a Black Man (request)
Tinariwen - ere tasfa adounia
the strangers - onye ije
apastar - gilgamis
adja pelkan - kaderimin ouyan
nahid akhtar - dil dil dil sambhala
dengue fever - 1000 tears of a tarantula

is this my world?

I read, I listen, I watch, and I'm just a bystander not wholly innocent, an observer.

These systems in other countries, built upon entitlement, intimidation, and corruption, are finally beginning to crack, but I wonder what will replace them, how they will rebuild. So much of history is just one despot after another, talking a different game, but doing the same things all while talking about bright new tomorrows and hopeful futures.

I've got no love for self-absorbed and self-important boomers of either partisanship and their culture wars and politics, the smokescreens of cynical manipulation. Whether they're politicians or unionistas, they'll get what's theirs while the getting's good, the perks they feel entitled to by coincidence of birth and privilege and let the rest of us deal with the fallout.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

new adventures in sound...

I spent the afternoon at the radio station hanging out with fellow people who know way too much about music as we did our music refiling, which to some may sound like drudgery but I'm an academic peon so I'm reasonably comfortable with mundane tasks provided that the company is good and I might run across something interesting.

The music director had me organize the new stuff, where I found lots of things I'm going to have to check out, and then me and one of the other world DJs went to work on our world vinyl, which includes mostly roots reggae, overproduced "world beat" from the 80's but also ancient Babylonian chants, field recordings of pygmy music, and loads of polka music from Nebraska (who knew?).

Many of the countries that these records came from now either don't exist or have different names, so we were debating whether or not we should still label Kashmir, Sikkim, Yugoslavia, and Tibet as their own countries for the sake of continuity or not, and now I know that we do indeed have Somali folk, classical Persian works, and Dutch trucker country music. Seriously. Thanks to my Viking ancestors, some of the titles are relatively easy to figure out. And it sounds about what you'd think it'd sound like.

And yes, I am totally giggling in my apartment at this.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

coming off the caffeine rush...

I forget that it's halfway through February, coming home and wondering why it's so damn cold so I'm wrapped in a blanket, listening to wintry music, too sleepy to do anything really coherent, ignoring phone calls that involve either going out to the bar around the corner even if it'd be chill or anything that involves listening to someone talking about their relationship angst. As someone with a literary bent who finds life and people to be more interesting than most recent fiction, I've got a higher tolerance and an often frequent enjoyment of anecdotes and stories, but not for endless regurgitation of dysfunction that's woefully one-sided.

We celebrated my uncle's birthday tonight, over the usual wine-and-politics preliminaries where everyone's all over the place politically, some people say things that are totally absurd, and I try to remember to be sure that what I say is coherent and not completely acidic, and still finding ways to laugh.

Me and my brother-in-law were trying to come up with ideas for a bestseller that would combine the worst elements of 2012 Maya weirdness with the neo-Hal-Lindsey predictions of the evangelical wing, joking about neocon babies (my sister said that the baby is constantly leaning to her right), and spelling out EVIL HERO with the OVER THE HILL birthday candles.

I end up aiding and abetting my grandpa by sneaking him brownies (he's diabetic but watches his sugar instead of taking insulin), discussing Neil Gaiman novels with my becoming-very-cool younger cousin who now has a green streak in her hair and is learning to play the guitar, talking to my sister's belly where my unborn nephew will be for another three months telling him that I'm sorry that the world he'll be born into sucks but that we still love him and God is good and maybe he'll still do ok.

Friday, February 18, 2011


I'm loving the sun pouring through the window behind me, knowing that in another week, we will be plunged back into cold once more. My neighborhood doesn't lend itself well to walk alone at daybreak without a canine companion, so last night I went to my old haunts in Lakewood Park, to walk down the path to the jettys below, where the ice stretches out as far as I can see, with the glittering skyline to the east, and where the west is brilliantly pink fading into lavender and blue.

I soak in the stark scenery of bare white birch trees, the dark filigree of vines, the deep blue sky, the frozen waves. The night falls quickly, but there's enough people out enjoying the thaw that I can be alone with my thoughts and with God.

It's been a good week and I'm looking forward to a weekend of creating, adventures with good people, a whole lot of new tuneage, and enjoying a respite from the chill. Despite the craziness of this world that makes me wish sometimes I could disappear onto an island somewhere, I am thankful beyond words for these things.

And this is the most gorgeous minute and a half of guitar work ever. Even though he's a bit crazy, I love John Frusciante.

it's the puppets that pull the strings

With greater wisdom comes greater sorrow, has been resonating with me and my good friend around the corner as we get older and constantly re-evaluate what we've heard, what we see, what we once believed, what we still believe, what that means, how wrong we've been, and also what we've learned about God and ourselves and others.

In other countries, words and expression mean that people die and things get bloody. I wish we weren't as complacent as we are about the terrible things that those in power do, but what would I be doing if I was in Tunisia or Libya or Egypt or wherever?

Would I be out there on the streets or letting other people with more to lose be the ones on the receiving end of state brutality? Right now my life is tenuously comfortable and I catch myself clinging to what shreds I have of perceived stability and not wanting to rock the boat too much. That scares me. It's not that I do nothing, it's just that I try to do something that isn't just about making me feel good for doing something awesome, that doesn't align myself with someone's power trip or ulterior motivations and it seems like that is everywhere.

Part of this is that I look at both sides and I don't have much patience. The lesser of two evils is just a smaller and more petty evil that you can usually steer clear of most of the time. The obliviousness of those who run my state, who exist in a bubble of richness and corporate dress codes but love to trumpet their values and supposed working class roots, seem to forget that we're not all overpaid employees feeding at the government trough.

Some of us are living paycheck to paycheck and finding that harder to do as rent is high, gas keeps rising, and food will too. Most of us don't like our unions either but we're stuck paying them dues like it's the mafia and know that if we didn't have them we'd be screwed over even more by the majority of our overlords.

I caught up with one of my friends from college last night, who voted Republican for fiscal reasons, majored in finance and has been out of work for months after the "soul-sucking bank" laid him off. "It scares me that so much power is in the hands of so few people who are so disconnected from those underneath them," he tells me.

He just applied for an accounting job at a small business and says it feels weird to think about the process of actually working with real money and real things because everything he dealt with in college and in the banking world is so abstract and often has little bearing on reality.

Life was easier when we were kids and our history was whitewashed, our world was small, and we believed everything we were told because we didn't know any better. Knowledge is powerful and good but it also makes things more complicated or messy. The "good people" did a lot of bad things too, though that doesn't justify the bad that the others have done.

Has there ever been a time in human history when we weren't fighting? Is it something in our blood? The stakes just keep getting higher, the more we advance as a civilization, the more creative ways we find to destroy, as the discourse degenerates into mutual ugliness rather than any kind of real discussion.

It's probably easier to deal with people you don't like if you persist in willful ignorance about who they are and this is only reinforced by an education system that is so much more concerned about churning out good little workers than a knowledgeable and curious population who thinks critically and questions. Some of us are going to seek out more than others, and it's something that I'm a bit geeky for, but still, even then, there is so much that I don't know about the world, and the more I learn the more I realize how much I just have no clue about.

I wonder how many of my righty friends actually hang out with people who are more liberal than they are and I wonder the same about my lefty friends because the way that I hear the one side talk about the other, I kind of wonder sometimes.

Just like any other group that feels strongly about something (see: musical subcultures, academia), there are infinite shades and ideas contained therein and heated debate within as well. Not all people more conservative than you are neocons, fundies, or libertarian wackjobs. Not all people liberal than you would call themselves Democrats or long for a socialist paradise. Not all pro-choicers hate babies and not all pro-lifers hate women. It might be more comfortable to paint with a broad brush, but it makes a caricature more than a true portrayal.

The more I see of the world, the more I read, the more conversations I listen to, the more perspectives I hear, it's not that I get more confused, but I don't feel like I can fit comfortably within these paradigms of discourse, and when flawed humans with infinite motivations are involved, no one's completely pure or correct. I don't have all the answers, even as there's some things I do take as absolutes. I've got my views on things just as much as anyone else, and you'd probably disagree with aspects of 90% of them and I'm willing to stand corrected when I'm truly in the wrong.

I'd rather have these conversations face-to-face over coffee or beer than in an abstract forum where words will get misconstrued and language gets tricky. I know I can't always do that, but I prefer it infinitely. I don't expect everyone to magically agree and start holding hands, but I do think we all could use a little more respect and humility, because we do a lot of talking and not a lot of doing or even saying anything that does much good, myself included.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

best of the blotter 35: banana thieves, fake nails, and piles of salt.

THEFT, COMMONWEALTH AVENUE: Vehicles in neighboring driveways were reported broken into Friday. One resident said two vehicles, left in their drive overnight, had been ransacked but nothing was stolen. The neighbor said a GPS device, loose change and a banana was stolen from their vehicle.

SUSPICIOUS PERSON, PEARL ROAD: A female employee of De’ Sol Tanning told the owner of the shopping plaza that she was scared of an elderly intoxicated man who came into the business to tan. She stated he came in with his hands in his pockets and was mumbling. Police responded, and did not believe the man was intoxicated; however, he did act belligerently with employees of the business and police. The man — who indicated he was homeless and living in his van — left and had his money refunded.

THEFT, CHAGRIN BOULEVARD: A Shaker Heights woman, 50, was arrested Feb. 8 for stealing fake eyelashes and fake nails from Walgreen’s.

MISCHIEF, BROADVIEW ROAD: Around noon on Feb. 9, an officer was dispatched to an RTA bus that was stopped on the side of the road. The police department had received word that there was a person on the bus who was lighting paper on fire and refused to exit the bus.

The officer entered the bus and noticed a 27-year-old Cleveland woman sitting near the back door and staring straight ahead. The driver of the bus explained that the passenger entered the bus in downtown Cleveland, rode it to the last stop at Broadview Center and then re-entered a few moments later. She was the only passenger on the bus.

As the driver headed north, she started smelling smoke. She stopped the bus and asked the passenger if anything was burning. The passenger explained that she was lighting paper on fire.

The driver demanded she exit the bus and would not continue to drive until she did.

The officer approached the passenger, who said that she had no identification. She explained that she was so bored that she decided to light paper on fire. She insisted that she wasn’t doing anything wrong.

After she gave officers her social security number, the officer learned that she had a warrant out for her arrest.

The woman was cited for criminal mischief and disorderly conduct.

And in Chagrin Falls, which totally has the so bucolic it must be weird factor going for it:

DISTURBANCE, NORTH MAIN STREET: Police were called shortly before 8 a.m. on Feb. 10 to Starbucks Coffee Shop, where two well-dressed men were “fighting — all verbal” for unknown reasons. One man had left upon arrival of police and the other said “he was in a hurry to leave and did not wish to press charges.”

SUSPICION, CARRIAGE DRIVE: A woman reported Feb. 8 that she thinks someone is harassing her and her husband, after they left a large pile of salt at their front door.

premature thaw

Usually my public transportation commute is unremarkable, as the Rapid is generally crowded with other souls who work banking hours and kids on the way to school, but yesterday was consistently entertaining, with the three teenage girls from the hood affecting convincingly posh British accents no doubt acquired during 10th grad English earlier that day, advising each other on the etiquette of a proper prom date and making snarky jokes about each other's mums riding the mechanical bull at Cadillac Ranch.

Not to mention disco-dancing middle-aged crackers with their CD walkmans and the Honduran couple watching the music video for "Whoomp! There it is" on the guy's phone so everyone can hear it.

It's getting warm in my fair city and it's starting to prematurely come alive once more in all of its absurd glory.

Yesterday was the first day in this new year when it was almost warm enough to roll down my windows and listen to music again, even if the heat is turned up as well. Hoodie weather is a beautiful thing and I can't wait until the days get longer and I can dig my bike out of the basement and wander the streets of Cleveland and the dirty shores of Lake Erie.


This isn't Stravinsky, but the anarchic spirit and emotion are there in homage, and even though my little sister isn't into anything with loud guitars and ragged vocals, being a Millenial Indie Kid, she's stolen the t-shirt with the above design from me multiple times. The music majors I know are disappointed when I explain that it has nothing to do with Igor and everything to do with an unhinged one-album punk band including two future members of Fugazi.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

in which I get ridiculous over music again.

... But there's a new Throwing Muses record coming out, which makes this Millenial-Wishing-I-was-Xer very very happy.

Dear Kristin Hersh,
Please please please come to Cleveland! I love your acoustic stuff too and your book you just wrote, and that solo show you did with the cellist was awesome, but I want to see you rock out. Besides I play your music on my show all the time and this will give me a good excuse to play more. I hope I'm as awesome as you when I get old.


That (Fan) Girl

To explain this embarrassingly gushiness on my part, listen below...

one of my top 10 favorite songs of all time. Michael Stipe can be forgiven for Shiny Happy People because of this song alone. The cello, the way their voices go together... it still moves me every time i hear it.

I got into Throwing Muses because Thom Yorke said they were a big influence on him and this CD was at the library I shelved books at as a teen.

And then the most recent project between solo records which always reminds me of if Kurt Cobain had ovaries and decided to make an even more corrosive record than In Utero, have a bunch of kids instead of get addicted to heroin and kill himself. How much do I love absurd amounts of heavy distortion, power chords, and general fury? So, so much.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

playlist 2/15/11 planet rock edition

Mulatu Astatke - shagu (Ethiopia)
Lee Scratch Perry - the zeal of the lord (Jamaica)
Chaweewan Dumnern - sab lam plearn (Thailand)
Alemayehu Eshete - timarkyakesh (Ethiopia)
Nahid Akhtar- aesi chalo na (Pakistan)
Pan Ron - I love mean girl (Cambodia)
Selda - ince ince bir kar yagar (Turkey)
the Fore Thoughts - sharbaz qalander (Pakistan)
Artur Nunes - zinha (Angola)
Gilberto Gil - (can't remember) (Brazil)
Umm Kolthoum - qal el ya hulif (Egypt)
Rasha - leali (Sudan)
Rachid Taha - Qalantiqa (Algeria/France)
Bharat Kherk - Calcutta Calcutta (India)
Jarabe de Menta - con el sol en el bosillo (Argentina)
Banda de los Hijos - dejala corre (Colombia)
Rodrigo y Gabriela - Ixtapa (Mexico)
Amadou & Mariam - lailalallah (Mali)
Rikki Ilionga - musamuseka (Zambia)
Anansa Professionals - enwan (Nigeria)
Bellemou & Banfissa - lah lah ya shaibi (Algeria)
Ray C - nimezama kwa mapenzi (Tanzania)
Hayvanlar Alemi - hayalauca kulubu (Turkey)
Los Destellos - Para Elisa (Peru)
Kouroush - Hajme kali (Iran)
Los Abandoned - conquistarte bien (Chile/US)
Femi Kuti - Truth don't die (Nigeria)

Monday, February 14, 2011

city of the dead...

I drove out last night to meet up with a friend of mine at my favorite coffeeshop to finish out the weekend, making a detour to Edgewater to take photos of the sunset as my low battery light began to flash.

The barista was listening to Blonde Redhead, Kim graded papers, I studied for a test and got mad at the glaring historical inaccuracies in my textbook (such as that Zimbabwe was way better off under Mugabe, and that Southern Sudan is overreacting because they were Christianized rather than Islamized, genocide be damned), and drank green tea. The atmosphere in there is perfect for writing, so I gave up on my stupid book and now have a real beginning for the Chinese Democracy of an epic Cleveland novel.

There was a couple at the table next to us that were talking kind of ridiculously the whole night. It seemed like they were both really trying to impress each other with how ironic and artsy they were and it just got too boring to even eavesdrop on after awhile. She figured out that they had met over the Internet and this was the first time they saw each other in person. I get the feeling it's not going to work out. But maybe that's just my inherent cynicism about anything involving mere mortals.

I hung out with the family this weekend, and my sister asked me to be her doula when she gives birth three months from now, which I guess means something along the lines of moral support and "being there" and such. I'm honestly honored, excited and nervous to be there with her through the whole birthing process, whatever this whole thing involves.

I've been getting some cabin fever pretty bad so I went down to the Valley to walk around in the woods. I don't know if it counts as real Darkthroning in the woods as I didn't venture too far off the beaten track given the foot of snow still on the ground that kept me on the little paths off the main paved one since I'm alone and don't want to have my body fished out of Rocky River months from now whether from my own well-documented clumsiness or foul play.

Everyone else either had a dog or two or was wearing spandex from head to toe and running seemingly oblivious through the beautiful winter scenes, while I walked with no real hurry, taking pictures of random pine trees and the sun coming through bare branches by the frozen river, finding that my pair of combat boots from my punk rock days were actually something almost practical.

The thaw in temperature and the great feeling of being out and moving sent me out after church to Lakeview for more solo wandering with camera. I covered a lot of ground, climbing up snow covered hills, trying to distinguish the indentations denoted by smaller gravestones covered by the snow, and took loads of pictures of angels and monuments that looked like mini Egyptian temples, the final resting places of robber barons and people that streets were named after.

I never realized there was a whole back part until I got back to where my car was and ran into a professor that my sister had who told me that Eliot Ness's grave was over by the pond. He said he jogs here on a regular basis and recommended the chapel to me.

I said I take out of town visitors to see the gorgeous little building with the Tiffany window and glass mosaics and he said "you take people to the CEMETERY?" but considering he's into Romantic poets and whatnot, it shouldn't be that shocking.

The gates were going to close in half an hour so I drove the rest of it, stopping to take photos, but newer markers aren't nearly so interesting as the old ones. I finally found the Haserot Angel, in repose next to a steep cliff.

I got lost in the back part that's newer and where the names on the tombstones are slightly less WASPy but the combination of morbid ostentation and affectations of piety are just as much omnipresent, like this stone, that has a big cross but then has the social standing quite prominent below. These people aren't even dead yet.

One woman was sitting on a chair next to her husband's grave in the middle of a field and sometimes I forget that there really are dead bodies here underneath the ground and the layers of ice and snow. It's easy to forget that when all you see is monuments and angels.

valentines schmalentines

Supposedly, according to people on the Internet, Cleveland's a great place to be single. What they don't tell you is that usually this means you're single forever. Unless you make a decision that you probably regret right now. This, my friends, is why.

Me: Twentysomething guy in hooded zip-up sweatshirt.

You: Twentysomething female, yoga pants before noon on a Sunday, hair up in a bun, eyes down on the floor. Your cart contained only a handful of frozen dinners, cat food, a family-size box of tissues, and a box of Franzia, I think.

All things considered, you probably weren't looking for me, or anyone, for that matter.

Let me know at which Giant Eagle you think I saw you.

To a blonde on Denison...

You're outside your house smoking often. I would drive by and honk but you always flip me the bird. Haven't seen you out lately. Wanted to show you that I had some more class than most guys driving around honking at girls, maybe take you to get some polish kielbasa on Fleet Ave

Female Cop Passenger side. - m4w - 25 (Cleveland 2nd)
Date: 2011-01-15, 12:09AM EST
Reply To This Post

I know you probably don’t check craigslist MC. After being mugged, watching you blow bubbles with your gum was something I probably needed to see. Your partner is right out of the movie Superbad. Maybe you will find an OG like me that will keep it real. I am now McLovin. Thanks for the ride and for letting me smoke in the back. Sorry the evidence smelled like piss, your partner seemed more concerned. If you were my partner I’d chew gum instead of smoking Newport. You have my name and social. The number I gave your partner was my ex-girlfriends. The address you dropped me off at is where I temporally stay. You can tell your partner to let you drive so you can check up on me lol. Gotta love Cleveland huh? If you find the money you will be my hero. Thanks!!!

You talked to my mom when you called DirecTV today - w4m

This is what I know about you,
You have every sports package avail from DirecTV, you were heading to a basketball game tonight (feb 10)
You were going to go to AZ for the day the Diamonbacks reported.
You have flat screens in every room you can including the bathroom.

You turned your basement in to a sports room and you dont allow non sports people there.
Mom told you I love sports and that I celebrate the day pitchers report to Spring Training.

Tell me why did you need to call Directv today? You said you wanted to meet, and I gotta tell ya, Any man who understands the importance of pitchers reporting day, I wanna met to.

All mom can remember is that you lived in Ohio, I hope this works

To the girl with her hair on fire, I was the guy in the clown suit - m4w - 24 (Litchfield)

It was that party over at McAle's barn, you took five shots of black velvet out of some guy's cowboy boot, lit your own hair on fire, and then gave me the hottest lap dance of my life.

Baby, I just wanted you to know, I was thinking about ya'.

Friday, February 11, 2011

got me wrong

I was accused last night of hating men.

Aforementioned acquaintance, who seems to get her ideas of what ideal manliness is and what a woman's supposed to do/be from supermarket magazines, trashy romance novels, and unrealistic movies, is not a reliable source on my relations with the male species, and I found this comment amusing especially given the context that it was taken out of. So it's not just a grain of salt I'm taking this with, it's the Dead Sea.

In all honesty, I enjoy the male species far too much to buy into this whole anti-dude thing, especially considering that most girls aren't interested in the things I'm interested in. Just because I'm interested in the same things as some of the male species, doesn't usually mean that we're interested in each other. It's just nice to enjoy what you enjoy with others once in awhile without worrying about things getting messy.

Besides, it seems like even the smartest of them end up dating really boring chicks who listen to country music, buy expensive purses, and watch terrible reality shows but put more time into their personal appearance than I do which makes me question their judgment slightly. Or they end up with impossibly thin fashionista hipster types that I know better than to compete with. Maybe it's an ego thing, to feel superior or it's something reserved for nights out with the bros. Whatever.

In all honesty, females of any age have generally caused me more trouble and drama than most men, be they classmates, catty coworkers, nasty bosses, or crazy mothers. Too much testosterone or too much estrogen is usually a bad thing. We need each other to balance each other out.

In other news, I've got about ten minutes before I'm gone, to go let the downstairs neighbor's dog out, have dinner with the family and the might-as-well-be-family-in-the-best-way in-laws, start working on some cut and paste-y awesome layout art for the first time in forever, and maybe work in some Darkthroning in the woods or at the Cemetery of Awesomeness.

And because there can never be too much Alice, I'm going to do a way-cooler-than-Michael-Stanley doubleshot to start off your weekend. Muchas gracias to Randal for hooking me up with what has become my winter car music and making me realize that I wrote off said debut album as sounding "Too 80's" in my misguided youth.

Sorry about my ditziness in the way of closing up.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

I love this guy

It's too bad that I don't live in Merry Olde England, because this would be something to aspire to. It's not every place that has old people magazines to give awards to old people.

And it's not every day that said old people admit that they're the walking dead.

"There is nothing like it for morale to be reminded that the years are passing – ever more quickly – and that bits are beginning to drop off the ancient frame. But it is nice to be remembered at all..."

what do you want for nothing?

I spent this morning sleeping in, not wanting to wake up from my cocoon of blankets and my grandma's feather bed, staring up at the ceiling talking to God and trying to reconcile the workings of my brain with my soul and its frequent dark nights. There's a disconnect there so often, between the heart and the head, something not quantified by biology, the reconciling of the rational and the impossible to empirically explain.

I was too depressed to attempt to make coffee so I poured myself a bowl of cereal and sat on the floor because I really don't have a comfy reading chair, listened to a lot of 70's punk and general rockitude about being angry young and poor and such. Thinking about "Hiking Metal Punks" made me feel much better, due to my Parma teenage metalhead roots and corresponding absurdist sense of humor, which tells you everything you need to know about the state of mind I'm in. And damn, the Bellrays are a good band, especially live.

This weather and the constant struggle to not get sucked into the oblivion of working and sleeping. Now that life has become less chaotic, I've been painting on the weeknights when I'm not making bowls and dishes, and itching to start playing music again in a creative way.

Church music has kept me fresh in playing with other people, and having a bassist who also digs the sounds that I like makes it fun, but after listening to lots of power chords and waves of shoegaze guitars and realizing that yes I do have a singing voice that isn't totally terrible. My pedals are at my parents' house, and I'm thinking about borrowing my dad's reverb box that wires into the amp to make it even more echo-y and amazing.

And I haven't done anything remotely zine-ish since my early twenties but upon conversations involving pretentious literary journals purchased by academia, rejection letters, access to cheap printing, and the glories of poemetry and DIY ethics.

I miss the evenings spent with my Lorain County crew, staking out a table at Arabica with ample supplies of scissors and glue sticks, using a typewriter to make it look more authentic, thinking we had all the answers (damn I was a self-righteous as only a punkass 20-year-old can be), and loving that smell of fresh carcinogenic toner when we got our finished creation back from the local printer.

We put out about four or five issues, including one completely absurd one made on a Giant Eagle copier at midnight, but matrimony, writer's block, and general geography left us on a hiatus as permanent as that of Fugazi, and non-LJ blogging has enabled me to process out my thoughts in real time.

These fine ladies have done an awesome job compiling some of the Rust Belt experience, and have inspired me to contemplate the possibility of more culture in these parts. It used to exist, and definitely still does, but I'm so out of the loop both by slackerness and connections that it's making me want to create my own noise and invoke the glory days of "Our Band Could Be Your Life" that I never lived through.

best of the blotter 34: crazy exes, dead fish, and a throwdown at the Apocalypse.

SMOKE, N. COURT: Police checked a building in the 900 block of N. Court St. after smoke was witnessed billowing from the building around 12:30 a.m. Feb. 1. An officer inspected the building and determined that the smoke was caused from multiple dryers operating simultaneously.

SNOW MESSAGES, FALLING OAKS: A Falling Oaks resident told police on Feb. 5 that a juvenile neighbor continued to write derogatory messages in the snow of the man’s yard. Police responded and spoke with the juvenile, advising him to cease.

BURGLARY, WHITNEY ROAD: A man reported to police at 7:28 p.m. Jan. 31 that someone had broken the door on his locked apartment and killed his fish.

AGGRAVATED MENACING, PARMAVIEW LANE: A Parma woman, 19, allegedly threatened her boyfriend — or ex-boyfriend — with a semi-automatic handgun.

It happened at about 6:15 a.m. Jan. 28. The man, 35, was in his garage when the woman walked up his driveway and pointed the weapon at his chest.

The woman told the man she still wanted to be with him. He told her to leave him alone and she walked away.

The man told police that a day earlier she had written in her Facebook account that she was going to burn his house down. Police are investigating.

OVI, WEST 130TH STREET: At 3:15 a.m. Feb. 5, officers responded to Apocalypse Sports Bar regarding two men fighting.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

this ain't no picnic

I've been through this rollercoaster of emotions before, in regards to certain pressing issues at hand, and know that I'll endlessly repeat these for quite some time until the next round of cuts comes around.

I'm a people person by nature, but tend to avoid those who make me nervous, especially when they have a lot more power and when this could really affect one's future. I gingerly bring up the suggestion that in the future of skeleton crews and general austerities, that there are a lot of other things that I've done before, could do again, and yes I know that there's such a thing called training do I look that dumb, because you seem to think so.

And I know it's stupid that it makes me mad. It's one thing to be ignored. I'm fine with that. It's a whole other thing to not be taken seriously, to feel like the word of one person or the unfairness of one incident when the person lowest ends up getting the blame totally invalidates the fact that I show up on time, heck, early, every day, learn from my mistakes quickly, and do whatever is asked of me, and go above and beyond on a regular basis. I get along with everyone, even the people I don't care for so much.

It's been like this awhile now, but when there's balance sheets involved, the sword of Damocles, the Axe of Austerity, it just adds to that sense of helplessness and frustration. At least there's always nerdy disenfranchised 80's punk to get me through the rough spots.

how can you say I go about things the wrong way?

I got a call at random from a friend of a former friend last night. I don't really know her all that well, as I know her through my most recent roommate who's no longer speaking to me, and so there's a dynamic of awkwardness there because I don't know what she knows about everything that went down in the past year. Since I'm not a fan of drama, I figure that what she doesn't know can't hurt her.

Every so often, she finds me at work or calls me and asks for life advice, most of which I know is not what she wants to hear and that she'll never take. I don't believe in sugarcoating but I try to be nice, yet the truth usually seems to possess this uncanny ability to hit nerves and make people mad.

We come from very different frames of reference in relation to absolutely everything, in part because of the difference of socioeconomic status and the values with which we were raised.
My upbringing was fairly conservative (though by no means as conservative as others I was around), and lower middle-class, while her parents are progressive, very well-off and live in a very affluent part of town, and currently bankroll her rent and college education in hopes that she'll get a master's degree because those are the kind of things that matter.

I tell her that maybe if you don't like school you should do something else until you decide what you want to do, get some life experience, because life isn't about how many degrees you get or what they're in.

Or instead of being on the Internet all the time looking for love, you should get out and get interested in stuff, volunteer or something if your parents aren't crazy about you working minimum wage, because that opens up your world and usually gives you more common ground with other people, and that usually guys get a little creeped out if you text them all the time and tell them their exotic ethnicity is sexy.

So she's asking me for love advice in regards to her roommate that she's enamored with even though everything about him even through her rose-colored gaze screams bad news to the point where I actually fear a bit for her safety and general well-being because said guy sounds sociopathic.

She considers me a "nice person" and a bit of a prude, which isn't terribly far from the truth. Any Victorian-ness on my part comes from an uncanny instinct for self-preservation coupled with the memory of several unpleasant incidents in my teens and seeing lots of instances of date rape aftermath in a college town. Moral code aside, it's a man's world and I tread there knowing that I have fought back and don't intend to be in those situations again if I can help it.

She always apologizes for swearing around me. She's surprised to find out that I have lived with male roommates, though it was for about three months in a college housing sublease situation and nothing "happened," considering that one was a fratboy who had his sorority girl friend with benefits upstairs and the guy I shared space with weighed 90 pounds and had muscular dystrophy.

So after she goes into way more detail about the relationship than I really wish I knew, she gasps a little bit when I tell her this guy is a total asshole who is constantly denigrating her, sees this as an economic arrangement plus the sex he'll never get to have in his own country, and that if I was her, I wouldn't date him ever and would probably move out also because he sounds like a terrible person to live with, let alone date.

"But I want a relationship!"

Don't we all. Sometimes.

But there's a reason why we don't give our phone numbers out to random dudes on the bus who ask for them because unlike humans, all relationships are not created equal. Sometimes it's heaven on earth like it is for my sister and her husband, and sometimes you end up with someone dead. There's Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan, but there's also Sid and Nancy.

The conversation ends quickly after that, and I paint for awhile and go to sleep on my couch in my cold little half a house wishing that I knew her parents' phone number so I could tell them that their daughter is living with a scary dude and that if they're going to pay her rent they should maybe pay it somewhere else where she'll be safer, but also knowing that she's a consenting adult and will probably continue to make mistakes like these so maybe I should let her? I don't want to feel responsible for someone's stupidity but I wish I didn't know.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

they all will have exquisite taste but everyone will look the same

In discussion of musical taste and such, I don't think I'm terribly ashamed of my guilty pleasures. As Randal has astutely observed, any sense of guilt has been imparted by the society of either corporate entities or scenester elitism. We like what we like, whatever that is and however that is perceived.

Some sense of sonic pretentiousness has probably always existed, at least according to my dad, who said that back in his day the people who listened to the MC5 weren't the people who listened to Yes weren't the people who listened to Gram Parsons. He has all of those in the record collection that I'll probably end up with since neither of my siblings own a turntable.

I saw a lot of bands live that I didn't care about, but I enjoyed the company of my friends who did. I went through some unfortunate musical phases just like most people, and have found that I haven't bothered with Nine Inch Nails or Stabbing Westward and the like since my teens, and haven't listened to Pavement since leaving Kent.

Guilty pleasures? Hmmm... I don't feel guilty, especially as I get older and there's less social pressure to be cool. I was never cool anyway. I guess the closest thing would be that I've got a soft spot for old-school hardcore and certain dancehall cuts. A lot of people my age pretend like they never listened to the Goo Goo Dolls or Staind, and gave me a hard time for still admitting that I love Alice in Chains and Pearl Jam.

Being in College Radio Land, I know that while certain parts of my musical palate run towards the obscure and esoteric (pre Pol-Pot Cambodian garage rock, Ethiopian jazz, New Zealand post-punk, Turkish psychedelia, Colombian hip-hop), my mainstays are profoundly pedestrian. I love my way uncool grunge bands and boomerific classic rock and pretty much any band that rips off Neil Young and Crazy Horse. I own 90% of U2's recorded output. I'll take the Red Hot Chili Peppers over Can any day.

And unlike my younger self, I'm less likely to judge you based on what you like, unless you're really into the Insane Clown Posse or something. And I might find it funny if you still rock a House of Pain jersey unironically. I've been around enough really awesome people with questionable taste and enough really nasty people with "good taste" to know that I infinitely prefer the former.

Besides, oh hipsters of the Internet, to paraphrase a Less Than Jake song title, "Some of My Best Friends are Metalheads."

third world lovers

Considering that I live in a town far removed from cosmopolitan taste, where 1970's rock and last year's Top 40 still rule the airwaves, my tastes are similarly outdated. The sounds I always come back to are what I heard as a kid, what I loved in my teens, when I first started playing guitar and realized there was this whole undiscovered world of music.

If the New York Times is to be believed, the hipsters have discovered Africa and while said hipsters tend to get a little pretentious about archaic musical forms, I'm honestly glad to see recognition of the amazing sounds coming out of other parts of the world.

The "world music" tag usually denotes some kind of Western sonic colonization and general cheesiness, usually with lots of synthesizers and terrible production, or something that inevitably involves Peter Gabriel or some other western dude who goes over and "discovers" some crazy new sound that inevitably gets overproduced and unbearable. The only world-ish stuff I could really get into was Dead Can Dance because it sounded ancient most of the time rather than something out of "The Lion King."

There's a part of me that's jealous of said boomer crackers because I'd love to be running around the desert with a tape recorder hanging out with electric guitar-wielding griots and Tuareg freedom fighters or going to the Festival in the Desert. This will probably never happen as I'm poor and vulnerable as a single white female.

Instead, I've spent a good deal of time downtown at Cleveland Public Library delving into their insanely huge international music section out of curiosity and playing this stuff at 5am on Tuesday mornings to those who may or may not be listening.

I'm glad that there's labels out there reissuing some amazing stuff from the 60's and 70's and also the more current musicians out there who will never get serious airtime over here because most lyrics aren't sung in English.

When I moved home from Kent, I was deeply depressed and feeling like my life was over (no friends, no car, dead end job, etc) and I listened to Amadou & Mariam's "Dimanche en Bamako" and painted nightly in the basement, seeking solace in the intricate guitars and mingling voices of a blind couple from Mali old enough to be my parents . I still play them almost every week on my show because it always does it for me and I hope it does it for other people too.

One of my college roommates was big into this stuff, and put this trip-hop remix of an Oumou Sangare track on a mix CD for me.

Rokia Traore has an incredible voice and shares a love for Gretsch electric guitars.

I'm still kicking myself for not seeing Tinariwen in Columbus last year. Most of these groups don't tour much, and if they do, they play festivals I'd never go to and major cities that aren't Cleveland.

This older stuff reminds me of my dad's garage rock 45's in all their fuzzed-out guitar-driven glory.

This one reminds of Cream.

Mulatu Astatke gets a lot of love for good reason. In all honesty, I don't know much about jazz, but I know I like trippy guitars, vibraphones, and things that sound like this.

Not to mention the sounds that came out of places we only know here in the western world as places where there's civil war and general craziness.

And I still really want a kora. These sound so beautiful, and I know it'd be hard to find one in these parts.

Monday, February 7, 2011

children shouldn't play with dead things

There were people protesting on the square about U.S. involvement in Egypt Friday night as I headed home and while I usually ignore everyone in a mad dash to catch the Rapid, I did stop to listen for a change. I get frustrated with conversations I have with people where they say "well at least Suleiman isn't an Islamist" and I wonder if it really matters sometimes, because it would suck to live under totalitarianism of any kind, whether it's religiously rooted or not.

But since I can't solve the world's problems, I resort to sculpting clay and subsequent dinner and ponderings and plans to go out into the winter snow for cultural enrichment.

We didn't get to the cemetery, as it was rainy and snowy, and since bicycles and skateboards are verboten, one would assume the same of plastic saucers.

But we did get to get our high culture on and be uncharacteristically snarky in the ancient art section of the Art Museum in regards to the defensive possibilities of solid gold reliquary purses, my assumption as a child that the Ancient Egyptians looked more Caucasian than African, the way that the headless Roman senator flanked by several busts reminds me way too much of Return To Oz...

We marveled at the workmanship in enamel, glass and metal, wondering why no one taught us about the Visigoths and the Scythians and the Bronze Age in history class, all this history and culture only hinted at in shards of pottery and intricate jewelry and the faces of those long gone.

Our favorite little sculpture is back on display as well, "The Stargazer" that's supposedly a woman but always looked a bit more alien.

The illuminated manuscripts were still on display and she observed in the middle of an exhibit about the art of bygone manuscripts, painstakingly copied onto vellum, ornamented profusely, and embossed with gold, there's a couple playing with their new Kindle and extolling its virtues.

We made a quick detour on the way back because my favorite Damien Hirst artwork of all time, a triptych of stained-glass looking designs made from hundreds of butterfly wings.

After that, we went to the pretty much deserted Natural History Museum to hang out in the 1970's decor with dinosaur bones and fossils. Since there were no school groups and hardly any kids, we had the museum to ourselves to get in touch with our "inner dinosaur."

The place hasn't changed in my lifetime and upon discussion with my elders, it looked more or less the same when they went there in their youth as well.

Also, the every conspiracy nerd's favorite world dominators have left their mark here.

Come and visit scenic and picturesque Archaic Ohio!

No one really knows why T-Rex's arms are so small, but supposedly someone thinks he's distantly related to the chicken:

We also learned that Disaster of Manly Manliness FutBol Americano proportions could occur as a result of climate change:

We went out to look at all the animals out back looking cold and cranky except for the otters, who thought we were there to feed them. Lindsay got kissed by a deer and we pondered the
possibilities of wooly mammoths and giant chickens going on all Jurassic Park on the planet.

Someone also thought that their mom loved birds way too much:

More terrible t-shirt slogans here...

It makes total sense that someone like me who loves living in a dying town would like old and and dead things and why when people visit, I recommend museums and cemeteries and old diners as destination options. Maybe that's kind of weird, but those kind of things do it for me. They always have. Something about living in a land of rust and snow can make you existential in a good way.

Sunday, of course, is the de facto national American holiday observed by almost everyone. Some friends from church that I enjoy immensely invited me over and it was good to watch the game with fellow hopeful cynics, as the snark was free-flowing, especially in regards to the presence of a certain former US president and the fratboy antics of a certain Pittsburgh quarterback.

Cowboys and aliens are evidently the newest zombies and vampires, not even Slash can save the Black Eyed Peas from total suckitude, maybe lip-synching isn't so bad when people can't sing especially when they name themselves after the Duchess of York and Suburban Shopping Malls, and The Fast and the Furious franchise is quickly becoming the Land Before Time of action movies. Tchaikovsky is rolling over is his grave at the abuse of the 1812 Overture, "And we wonder why other countries want to bomb us," one says.

At least the Packers won, I guess, and I got to laugh.

Friday, February 4, 2011

another unread open letter

Dear Mr. President,

Haven't we had enough with this "At least he's our s.o.b." business? To send a billion dollars to a repressive regime because it's 'not as bad' as others? To send lots of guns and such to this guy in Yemen to boot? To champion democracy yet prop up leaders who know how to say the right thing to us to get the money? We've already enabled the existence of Pinochet, Stalin, Somoza, Trujillo, Batista, Pahlavi, Niyazov, pre-1991 Saddam, and yet we still do the same with the likes of Mubarak.

For all your high-minded words, Mr. President, you're suggesting that the new ruler of the country be our CIA spook who's done a lot of nasty torturing business, some of it in our name?

The more I see of you, the more I'm glad I voted third party and didn't buy into all these platitudes of high-minded bullshit and hope and change. How are you any better than your predecessor or anyone else before him?

'battle dress'

...evidently has nothing to do with medieval warlike accoutrements or re-enactors but rather this whole thing called "Dress for Success."

My first dealing with this whole culture came at the Seasonal Holiday Retail Hell Job I had for three weeks when I was 19. At orientation, we learned how to run the cash register the lady who ran this was wearing a power suit and told us we were really special because we worked at Kaufmann's and were dressed much classier than those people at JCPenney's.

We had to carry on this tradition of looking really good so that when we went for lunch at the food court, everyone could tell that we worked at Kaufmann's. Honestly, I don't think anyone else in the rest of Parmatown Mall really gave a damn either way, but then again, there's a reason that I'm not the manager of anything.

So now I'm in the world of grown-up-ness where I have to maintain a modicum of respectability and negotiate the precarious terms of business casual and read these articles about careerwear with some bemusement.

What do my legs say about me as a barely creative individual? What kind of authority do I want to project? Being that I'm often told I'm young enough to be their children by my superiors, I get the feeling that I'm not taken terribly seriously as it is.

Evidently knee-high boots and the color purple are okay, which is ironically what I'm wearing today, not because it's a "Power Color" but more because I got it for free from someone, as I did the accompanying skinny black pants and the dangling heavy glass earrings. At least Eugene Hutz & Co. would be proud of me.

Thrift and comfort over fashion, but I'm getting better at this whole thing, since I have to. Our Industrial Sociology overlords claim that one should not express oneself especially as a female, but since I have no ambition and work in the non-corporate realm, I'll continue to indulge in my love of dangly earrings (de-gauging my ears was a good thing) and dark colors. So far it hasn't gotten me in any trouble, so I guess I'm okay.

I'm thankful I live in an unfashionable rustbelt city in a run-down part of town so that I can get away with old jeans and an endless array of black t-shirts, where a winter wardrobe means putting thermals under and a hoodie/cardigan over said previous items, and I get mistaken for a record store clerk every time I'm shopping in said establishment. It's not entirely a bad thing.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

best of the blotter 33: Slim Jims, Tuna, and Ho-Hos

SUSPICION, DETROIT AVENUE: A woman called police at 3:18 p.m. Jan. 26 and said a group of juveniles were sniffing something out of a brown paper bag. The juveniles were tracked down and the contents of the bag turned out to be tuna fish sandwiches. Officers advised the hungry kids and sent them on their way.

POSESSION OF MARIJUANA, MORTON AVENUE: On Jan. 28 tenants complained to police about a strong smell of marijuana emanating from one of the apartments. Upon arrival police were immediately struck by the smell in the hallway. They were able to locate the apartment. A male answered the door and without hesitation gave the police his marijuana. He told police he only buys the best. The 21-year-old male and his roommate were cited for misdemeanor possession of marijuana.

SCREAMING, BRYNMAR: Police responded to a Brynmar Lane home after a report that a woman could be heard screaming inside the residence. An officer spoke with the woman, who said she was upset because she could not remember the passwords for her computer. No charges were filed.

DISORDERLY CONDUCT, MAPLECREST AVENUE: A Parma boy, 17, was arrested at 10:22 p.m. Saturday after he was seen jumping repeatedly off the roof of an attached garage.
When police arrived, the boy was lying on the garage roof. He told police he had been playing a game of “manhunt.”

Police said the boy had been drinking.

SUSPICIOUS PERSON, CHAGRIN RIVER ROAD: At 1:05 p.m. Jan. 6, police received a call about a suspicious person looking through the recycle bin at the post office, 1500 Chagrin River Road. Police arrived to find a woman, 82, of Chesterland, looking in the bin. The woman told police she was looking for a bill she had mistakenly discarded.

NO TAIL LIGHTS: A driver was pulled over Jan. 19 on Medina Road for not having tail lights. He then lied to the officer several times, giving them a false first name and misspelling it, and claiming he did not know his birthday or Social Security number because he was “bad at math.”

THEFT, CHAGRIN BOULEVARD: The C.E.O. of Perfusion Solution, Inc. reported on Jan. 20 the theft of a $20,000 artificial heart and various blood pump parts valued at $10,000.

THEFT, LORAIN ROAD: A Speedway gas station employee contacted police on Jan. 18 when someone stole $67 worth of Slim Jims.

DISORDERLY CONDUCT, EAST WASHINGTON STREET: Moreland Hills police reported at 2:40 a.m. Sunday that a “highly intoxicated male” was walking from the BP Station. When Chagrin Falls police caught up with him, “he appeared to have an entire package of beef jerky in his mouth,” and was reluctant to give his name and address. When police told him he needed to cooperate or face charges he said he was hungry and his mother was “Martha Washington.” The South Russell man, 24, was later picked up at the police station by his parents.

HO HO BROUHAHA, BRANDYWINE: A 37-year-old male and his 30-year-old niece, who lived with their mother and grandmother, respectively, began arguing over a box of Ho Hos on Jan. 25. The homeowner became annoyed with the two adults and called police to the Brandywine Drive home. An officer responded around 10:55 p.m. and told both offenders to start acting like adults.

IDENTITY FRAUD, MARKS ROAD: A woman reported being the victim of an Internet scam at 6:38 p.m. Jan. 15. According to the victim, after posting her resume on, she began receiving e-mails from a “Jane Wilson” from a company called “International Commodity Trading.” The victim was promised a job as a purchasing manager with the company, allegedly based out of Switzerland.

The victim was instructed to wire money for advertising materials to an address in Ukraine, then was allegedly threatened by “Wilson” when she failed to do so. “Wilson” reportedly told the victim to find a way to wire the money or “a couple guys from eastern Europe Mafia” would visit her at her home address.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

songs for cold weather

I keep hearing about these epic snow storms but haven't seen much. Supposedly the big one is coming in tonight, and while I drove down due to being at the station, I'll probably be taking public transit and/or walking home.

We peons always seem to make it in, while the Powers That Be claim they can't get out of their driveways and it's just too much! to get downtown.

Despite the lack of playlist posting, I am still on the air, but decided this morning to theme it with sundry wintry songs. The sweet sounds of Africa/Thailand/the Middle East/Latin America just wouldn't cut it on a morning where my car is rolling over piles of snow and I'm crawling through the dark downtown streets.

I left my playlist in the car, but here's what can be recalled....

Mogwai - 2 rights make 1 wrong
Agalloch - the Hawthorne Passage: Song for a Gray City
Siouxsie & the Banshees - the Sweetest Chill
The Clash - London Calling
John Frusciante - This Cold
Curve - Frozen
My Bloody Valentine - Soft as Snow
Radiohead - Morning Bell
Gil Scott-Heron - Winter In America
Morphine - Let's Take a Trip Together
The Chills - Pink Frost
The Pixies - Winterlong
The Cure - Winter
The White Stripes - In the Cold Cold Night
Cave In - Seafrost
Massive Attack - Weather Storm
Team Sleep - Ever Since WWI
Kristin Hersh - Winter
Dead Can Dance - American Dreams
Husker Du - Back From Somewhere / Ice Cold Ice
the XX - Crystalised
Mazzy Star - Still Cold
Queens of the Stone Age - Long Slow Goodbye

Next time, there will be more planning...


We all have our news cycle crack, and juicy gossip and drama draw us mere mortals like moths to flames or flies to honey.

For some of us, it's Justin Bieber or Kim Kardashian, and for others of us, it's our favorite World Leaders Fo' Real, as opposed to Stipe & Co's World Leader Pretends. I'm glad I'm not the only one gets immense entertainment from the antics of men with golden guns, scams involving black magic in Dubai, awkwardly gangsta heads of state, geopolitical bros before hos, and rantings about The Kleenex, The Facebook, and The Twitter from a former Reagan-era bad boy who's entered more into Crazy Uncle status, with his night nurse, fabulous fashion sense, and musings on the state of the world.

Thanks to Warner Brothers being lametastic, there is no accompanying music for those of us who reserve our Western Imperialistic Stooge ambition upon the Risk! board or the fantasy realms of D&D to the accompaniment of said college-rockers extraordinaire. Instead, I give you Michael Stipe wearing more eyeshadow than I've ever applied on my face in my life.

REM was awesome around the time that Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles hit the cartoon circuit, captivating the hearts and minds of many an aged Millenial. While my cousins and I never thought to tie decorative pillows on our backs to approximate the carapaces of our heroes, we did tie scarves around our heads and run around our dark basements fighting theoretical crime in the sewers.

I never found April as exciting because her yellow jumpsuit was way dorky and it seemed like she was always getting kidnapped and that's not as fun as being a pizza-eating ninja turtle. Google-imaging her is a perilous task because she seems to have quite a hentai fanboy following.

Though, with the exception of hair color, it turns out we're more similar than previously thought. She's supposedly working on a Great American Novel too.

TMNT did, however, introduce the word "Cowabunga!" into our vocabulary and also the existence of Italian Renaissance artists, who ultimately became much more interesting over time. Now, "bunga" conjures up a different kind of party that involves something other than pizza, though there is still an Italian component and a megalomaniacal bad guy with Mafia connections and a media empire who likes to hang out with other evil dudes.

Also, I can't help but notice a similiar complexion between Mr. Boehner and Mr. Bunga-Bunga.

Forget the Red-Headed League of Holmes & Watson, who else is going to be joining the Brotherhood of the Orange Skin?

In other news, the rest of the world needs to review their geography so they know where the Middle East is and what countries it encompasses.