Friday, September 30, 2005


Including today there are three more days left till the playoffs. The teams have been set except for the Wild Cards and the AL East. Since the White Sox have already clinched, this puts Boston in a bit of the whole as their series with the Yankees means something to both teams, and the White Sox and Cleveland series means something to only the Indians. Commissioner Selig says he believes the White Sox will play their starters against the Indians. It should be that Selig hopes and prays that the White Sox will not take it easy. He knows what having the Red Sox and the Yankees in the playoffs means: bigger revenue and ratings. The last thing Selig wants is for the Indians to beat out the Red Sox for the Wild Card. Well screw him. I'm rooting for the Tribe.

As for the NL Wild Card, I hope the Cubs stick it to the Astros and sweep them. Just once let the Cubs do the right thing this season. Since the Cubs season is over, and has been over, I guess I can whip out this song that I use to close each Cubs season. Of course I could have played this in July.

Whiskeytown-Empty Baseball Park-Faithless Street

Also, I know A-Rod has had a great year, but have you seen a player like Big Papi get big hit after big hit? Where would the Red Sox be without him? They’d barely be over .500 team. That sounds like MVP to me.

How funny would it have been that if the hatch in Lost led to a toilet in China? Ok, maybe it wouldn’t be that funny. It would though be right up there with the St. Elsewhere’s snowglobe ending.

I’ve made it a goal of mine to reconnect with three friends from high school. Thanks to internet magic I don’t think this will be all that difficult. One of my flaws is that it’s not easy for me to keep long distance friendships. I get caught up with where I’m currently and end up losing touch. There have only been three people that I’ve kept in contact with: Bob, Eric and Melissa. These three guys helped me survive the hell that is college. What I know now is Karl works in Wildlife protection, Craig is some kind of genius that has worked at MIT in Mass. Yeah, he was always been the smart one. I don’t know what Aaron is doing. I do know they are all married. We’ll see how it goes. You wonder how much everyone has changed, or if you've changed that much.

I cut my own hair and it shows.

For some reason they still make those Charmin commercials with the animated bears wiping their ass. Am I the only one that is creeped out by these? Who think these help sell toilet paper?

I’m getting tired of people complaining about the state of music. You may want the world to listen to cool music but it’s not going to happen. These days the music at the top of the charts is produced to be there. It’s made for mass consumption. There are exceptions, and different trends but it will never be like it was in the past. Simply be glad that there is music being made that you enjoy, and that with iTunes, satellite radio, and independent music webzines you have many more avenues to find good music than before, and isn’t it worth working a little for?

I’d like to thank those who frequent this blog. As of last night I eclipsed the 1,000 visit mark. Which I thought wouldn’t happen till 2020. So thanks, I hope it’s been slightly entertaining. I'd also like to apologize for the last post. I don't know what my purpose or rational for writing it. These things happen I guess.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

If I Was Overconfident

Awhile ago I actually had a girlfriend. It was an odd relationship, because we both admitted early on that it eventually wouldn’t work out for various reasons. For that short time though, we had fun hanging out, going to non-date movies, and ahem other activities. Near the end, she said that “No matter what, we need to still be good friends.” Of course I said “sure.” I’m not a complete ass, and I did have fun hanging out with her. So, we went the friends route. We still went to a couple movies, and went to dinner a few times. Then her contact with me reduced less and less. She never called. If I called, she always cut it short. She no longer IM’d me. Her emails were the same questions no matter what my email was pertaining to. Then there weren’t even the emails. I was lost and bewildered. Was she just using me for my svelte good looks and charm? Were all her compliments simply said to string me along? She seemed so sincere. Sure I wasn’t completely invested in the mini-relationship, but I’m the pro at being distant. Yet she was now schooling me on being distant. Then I realized what her reason was for all this. See she’s scared to even see me. My dark lock of hairs, slender yet masculine build, and semi quick wit causes her knees to buckle and heart to flutter that she feels she must play it safe and have nothing to do with me. It’s completely understandable. She’s not the first to be overcome by the Iten, and certainly won’t be the last. So, I resign to the life as a man that no woman can resist. My life as a stud.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Everything I Know about Sex I Learned While Working at Papa John’s

In a previous post I admitted to working the delivery circuit for Papa John’s. Other than the importance one duck’s life can have, I learned about the pizza biz, where the missing link operates, and what people will do for a two dollar tip. I also learned quite a bit about the sex. I share with you now three lessons I’ve learned.

1. Smoking Weed Can Cause You to Lose Your Inhibitions, and Misplace Things: On a Friday night one of my last deliveries was a few pizzas to this cookie cutter home. After knocking, the door quickly opened releasing a cloud of pungent smoke. As the cloud hovered around me, I noticed the smoke had a familiar odor. Seeing the group of teenagers giggling while trying to hide their bongs confirmed my suspicion. The girl who answered the door giggled a little more as the transaction of money for pizza was made. Counting the money confirmed my second suspicion that there was no tip. Frustrated, I pocketed the money and said “Thanks” in my now perfected sarcastic tone. She then batted her eyes and said, “Aren’t you forgetting something?” I checked the order slip to see if I forgot a 2 liter or extra dipping sauce. I had gotten the order right. “Don’t you want your tip?” she asked, following it up with a louder giggle. Her eyes led me down to her cleavage. Sure enough, sticking out between her breasts was some folded up money. It was one of those, “I’m on Candid Camera” moments. But, since my livelihood relied on tips, it became a real life reenactment of the game Operation. With my steady hand, I went for the money implant being careful not to touch the sides. After the successful retrieval, I quickly walked to mat car as the girl said “Have a good night.” The real bummer of it all was that I did all that for what ended up being only a dollar tip. I should have left it there.

2. Apparently Your Wife/Girlfriend’s Nudity Can Be Used as Currency: I went to deliver a pizza to a pretty nice neighborhood, and was expecting a decent tip. It was one of those “drunk man villages” where every townhouse looks the same. Standing at the door, I knocked, and knocked, and knocked. No answer. Following delivery protocol, I went to a phone and called, and called again, and called again. No answer. There’s nothing like wasting gas and time on a “No Show.” So, I went back to the store, and started closing up. Sure enough the people that ordered the pizza called a half hour later asking for their pizza. Their excuse was that they had a bunch of kids over for a party and couldn’t hear the door or phone. I thought maybe I had gone to the wrong townhouse. It was a “drunk man village” after all. Arriving at the townhouse, I realized I was right the first time. Again there were no lights on. I knocked and a yuppie wearing only boxers and a layer of sweat opened the door. Shudder. He apologized and used the “kids party” excuse again. Only this time he said it as joke. He gave me his money, and I gave him his pizza. As the exchange took place, I noticed a slight giggle from beyond the doorway. The yuppie looked to his left and said, “Honey, why don’t you give him the tip.” Sure enough, a tall stunning brunette stepped into the doorway. She was wearing a robe and panties, and that’s about it. I thought she could have been wearing a bra. The fact that she wasn’t was made clear when she opened her robe as she handed me the money. Yeah, no b-b-b-bra. She chuckled as my eyes nervously looked for a location that wasn’t baring flesh. I stuttered thanks and went back to my car afraid the word “threesome” would be uttered. The tip though was actually pretty good, and yes I’m talking about the money.

3. People Will Offer You Anything for Free Pizza: It was one of those rare days, where I was brought in early to work. I was delivering a small pizza to another townhouse in another drunk man’s village. As I pulled into the parking lot, I noticed a group of kids loitering around. The oldest of the group was a girl that could’ve just had her 13th birthday. She couldn’t have been older than that. Seeing the Papa John’s sign (read: target) the kids clamored. “Pizza!” “Where are you going?” “Are you going to my house?” “Don’t go there. I want it.” “Do you have any free pizza?” They started following me up the stairs, as I kept answering no. After dashing their hopes for free pizza, I heard, “I’ll let you fuck me up the ass for that pizza.” Sweet Mother Hubbard! It was the older girl in the group. Any hope I had for our future generations was quickly snuffed out. I’m sure she was joking, but for that to come out of her mouth. Flabbergasted, I just delivered the pizza, and went to my car. They then begged me for some cigarettes. No, I didn’t give them any.

There’s three valuable lessons that I hope help you as they’ve helped me. If you are actually able to apply these lessons, please don’t let me know.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Bits O' Music

WAIT! Look I know you usually hit the back button once you see the “Bits O’Music” title, but I need your help on this. I’ve recently heard the band UFO mentioned in artists interviews. I had never heard of them, so I researched a little on them, and got a hold of some songs. My first reaction was, “How the hell did I not hear of these guys?” It took awhile to find a CD or even an MP3. iTunes didn’t have it. Amazon only had imports. Then recently UFO albums started appearing on iTunes, and remastered CD’s became available. It upsets me that I missed out on these guys. This is great classic rock. So my question to you is, have you heard of them? I realize I had a lot of catching up musically since my conservative youth, and some bands have slipped through the cracks. But, I can’t imagine a so called “popular” band like this passing me by especially when I was in my classic rock phase. My favorite song of the few I’ve listened to so far is “I’m a loser.” I love the piano and the build up to the end. It’s great power ballad stuff. Again, if anyone (Tim, Bobby, PLW) can shed a little light on these guys, I’d appreciate it.

UFO-I'm a Loser

If you are an artist or artist representative being featured on this blog and want me to take down a song, let me know, and it will be removed from the server immediately.

To Our Pets

We’ve all had a first pet. Technically, my first pet was an orange tabby named Jake. I don’t actually remember Jake. There are pictures and I’ve heard stories but I don’t consider Jake my first pet. The first pet of memory is a little mutt named Rags. My parents got Rags around the time my brother Ben was born. She was a cute little dog with the kindest disposition. She never demanding anything and was always well behaved. Rags was a constant. Rags was there for all the major events of our family’s life. She was there when Ben was born, when my Mom gave my brother and me the divorce talk,

My first day of school, when my Mom and stepfather married, when my half sisters were born, Rags was there.

When we’d meet my Mom at the halfway point for holidays, Rags always came with her little “hello” bark and tail wagging. Rags gave you unconditional love. Rags was there when you needed her. Despite all the crazy accidents that shortened the life span of our future pets, Rags lived a very long life. Her last few years were spent on the farm where she enjoyed blindly chasing rabbits and any sound she thought she heard. Eventually her time came. I remember when my Mom told me that Rags had died. Tears in her eyes my Mom said she just walked into the woods off into the woods and died like she didn’t want to burden us. Even after Rags was gone we still talked and reminisced about her. We had our Chags, Buffy, Pickles, Tigger, Tom, Rugs, and bunch of fish but none of them came close to the greatest pet ever: Rags.

Yes, I’m biased. But I hope all of you had a Rags to help you through the tough times. If you haven’t, I hope you get to experience it. If you have, then here’s to your Rags. Whether it be cat, dog, fish or turtle, to those pets that rose to the level of friend.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Albums in My Closet

I pride myself on my CD collection. In fact I’m a little egotistical about it. I won’t judge others about what they like, because they like what they hear. It’s not their fault they won’t extend their ears outside of what the record industry is shopping them. I know it is hard to turn away from their onslaught I was there once. We all have records we aren’t proud of. I’m not immune to the drunk purchase or the instinct purchase, or the who am I purchase. Here are my top 5 worse albums ever purchased. I could easily fill this up with Christian albums or Winger or other albums when I didn’t know any better. These are albums I should’ve known better to pick up. This time they are in order.

5. Poison-Open Up and Say Ahhhh: I know I just said that I wouldn’t include albums like this. Well, I wouldn’t have if I’d bought it in 1988. No, I bought it in 1995. For full price! Perhaps, I was trying to reclaim a past youth I never had. Perhaps, I was drunk. It most likely was none of those. When you purchase an album, and the cashier gives you the "What the hell are you buying look?" perhaps you should second guess your purchse.

4. Extreme-III Sides to Every Story: Extreme does a concept album? Hell yeah! You thought there were only two sides to every story? Moron! You see there is my side, your side and the truth. How clever is that? The only way I could sink even lower is if I went to their concert. Hmmm. At least I didn’t buy some lame baseball hat at the concert. Shit. I knew this was a bad idea.

3. RTZ-Return to Zero: Yes, the RTZ stands for Return to Zero. Yes, it’s redundant. Why did I buy this album? Does the name Brad Delp ring a bell? He was the lead singer of the classic rock band Boston. For some reason RTZ wasn't the second coming of Boston. For some reason nobody else cared. For some reason it didn’t work out. The reason: They sucked. A follow up to this awful purchase is the Boston album released in 1995 I think. It didn't have Brad Delp and stunk just as bad.

2. Trixter-Hear: During the midway point of alternative music’s trouncing of hair bands, this album came out. You most likely have never heard of them. I wish I was like you. When you buy an album, and then the video is lambasted on Beavis and Butthead, you know you might as well just bury it right then. I wish I had.

1. If Looks Could Kill-Original Soundtrack: I don’t know which is more embarrassing, seeing the movie in the theater or liking it so much that I bought the soundtrack. It’s probably the last. Wait! It’s that I saw it twice in the theater. Yeah, that’s the most embarrassing. Man, I loved my "21 Jump Street!"

Now that was slightly painful. When I start bragging about my collection you can now simply say “Trixter” or “If Look Could Kill” and easily put me in my place. Yes, I may regret this post for quite awhile.

Friday, September 23, 2005


As with most people on the west coast, work at the office came to a halt to watch the Jet Blue plane make an emergency landing. I came with away with a few things after watching the amazing landing. First, Jet Blue owes that pilot whatever he requests. You couldn’t ask for a better landing. If I was on a plane that he was flying I’d feel completely safe. In fact I wouldn’t be surprised if Jet Blue advertised the flights he flew. Second, I found it slightly disturbing that the passengers were watching their own footage on the plane. Sure, you’d probably like to know what’s actually happening but it still seems morbid to me. Finally, with the reported jokes made by the pilot and passengers to alleviate the tension, and my co-workers compelled to quote Airplane it seems humor once again is the biggest defensive mechanism. I'm also never fyling anything with "bus" in its name.

So season premiere week is nearly over. There hasn’t been any series premieres that have really grabbed me. I had high hopes for Threshold, but they were quickly dashed. Supernatural makes a good effort but still falls a little flat. Invasion has promise. Prison Break came out of the gate strong, but has quickly bored me. I’d also like to thank ABC for moving Lost to 9PM which is the same time as Veronica Mars. Thanks for forcing me and my Tivo to make a choice. I’m sorry Miss Mars. Miss Bell is so cute too. Still hoping for Night Stalker to come through. I was also sad to see Diane Farr on Numb3rs, which means she really is no longer on Rescue Me.

Enough time has passed that I’ve come to terms with the Cubs not making the playoffs, again. It’s now time for me to pick teams to root for during the rest of the year. My AL choice is the Indians. I’m hoping they actually catch the Whitesox. I like to share my misery. It seems odd but my NL selection is the actually the Phillies. I hate the Astros so much that I’m actually going to back a Philly team. I do like the Chase Utley though. Overall, I’m for the Indians winning it all. Still hate the Yankees. Does any team for the NL West even deserve to go to the playoffs?

On a whim I picked up the new Rolling Stones album. It’s actually pretty good. They’ve seemed to have finally realized they don’t need to try to compete with the new bands musically. They simply need to rock. There are still a few stumbles along the way, but this is their best album in quite awhile.

Looks like Fiona Apple is finally releasing her album…YAWN.

Bought the bizarre trippy Jap-pop game We Love Katamari. If you’re a fan of the original, you’ll love this. There are no big changes. The worlds are more unique (underwater, zoo, space, etc). Vs. mode has been beefed up. There’s also a great co-op mode that will make the perfect drinking game. Basically it’s you and a friend trying to work together to roll the Katamari. Imagine the good times watching two drunk friends attempting to coordinate their motor skills. I was also pleased to hear they kept the same theme song. Kitschy Joy!

For some frightening and comical reading I recommend checking out the last few posts on Paper Graffiti and Potential Lunch Winner. It will give you a good glimpse into the mind of someone who needs some serious help. Who knew someone could love Kids Inc. that much? C! R! A! Z! Y! Incorporated!

I’d also like to welcome Krystal back to the blogging universe. If you need party ideas or want to know where pop culture is headed next I suggest you give it a read. Plus, her posts are much better written than mine.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

My Own Wierd Fan E-Mail

Cleaning up my inbox, I stumbled across this e-mail. I shared this e-mail with the boys at 3CT when I first got it. Laugh, cringe or do what you will. I do wonder what Caruso would think of such an e-mail. I want to think this is a joke, but I know it's not. The name has been removed to protect him from humiliation.


Thanks for helping create the most compassionate character I've ever seen in television. I got hooked on CSI: Miami late in the first year because week in and week out Caine displayed self-sacrifice and compassion. I tend to think that behind the sunglasses are tears reminiscent of one who held children in his lap and would have gathered Jerusalem to Himself as a hen gathers its chicks. Since that first year, Caine the compassionate Christ-figure has been a staple in our house. You and your colleagues are to be thanked for showing us a little bit of WWJD.

News Director
CDR Radio Network
Cedarville, OH

The Girl for the Trees

A few people have asked about the identity of the girl in the picture. Maybe it’s the defiantly displayed middle finger. Most likely it’s that I’m in a picture with a girl…and we’re touching. Whatever the reason, she’s a good story from my life, so I’ll share. Her name is Nancy.

Since I was on the unintentional five year program at Cedarville and my first core group of friends were a year older, I needed to find a new core after my Junior year. Thanks to my best friend Eric, I was able to find a core in the broadcasting department. Part of that group was Nancy. At first she was on the fringe. Even more than me she strayed from the Cedarville standard. Her penchant for go-go boots, and the provocative put off many of the yuppie raised students. Lucky for her, those in the broadcasting department were the black sheep of Cedarville. Actually, it was lucky for the broadcasters.

It wasn’t till after the first quarter of my Junior year that I actually got to know Nancy. The broadcasting department went on it’s annual retreat to a kids camp. The goal was to help clean up the place, and get it ready for some kids. For some reason one of the groups consisted of Nancy, myself, and every other goofball in the department. Thank goodness we were only put on raking duty. We didn’t do too much damage, but we didn’t do much raking either. I think we lost a rake to the elements, but that was about it. Nancy and I bonded on music and movies over that weekend. One movie though led us to be friends. Nancy loved disco, Manilow, and basically all things 70’s pop culture. Her main crush though was John Travolta. Even before “Pulp Fiction” she was all about Travolta. So, when “Pulp Fiction” did come out, she had to see it, and see it often. At that time, Cedarville students were not allowed to see movies at the multiplex. That of course didn’t stop Nancy and me. I can’t even remember how many times we saw that movie. In between our viewings of Royales with cheese and severed ears our friendship grew.

We started hanging out more. We’d actually go see other movies. We’d edit our projects together blaring Manilow and the Bee Gees till 3 in the morning. Giving each other the middle finger was our sophomoric and endearing way to greet each other. Still, she was distant. A close friend of hers died during my second senior year, and it shook her pretty hard. She struggled with eating after that, but her wall was too thick to accept help. She also had a life outside our group that she never let many into. Even though she was a blast to hang out with, and we had a certain bond, she was never willing to share. Not that I was the sharing type either. That’s probably one of the reasons we were friends.

I don’t have any regrets when it comes to my dating life. I may have said or done the wrong thing, but it never really bothered me much. If it wasn’t to be, it wasn’t to be. As long as learned from my mistakes I was happy with that. Nancy though is a regret because I was never able to find out what could have been. Something or somebody always got in the way of me asking her out. She would have a boyfriend or had a crush. When she was single I’d have a crush. That’s my own fault. Nancy and I met up in D.C. for spring break but my mind would be so caught up in another girl I didn’t see what was in front of me. Even when I was over that, I’d hesitate because we both had self destructive leanings. I also thought she was too cool for me. I didn’t think I measured up with her cool friends at the time. Again that’s my fault. I didn’t get a sense of what could have been till after I graduated. On a whim I decided to visit Cedarville after I graduated. I was living in Columbus at the time, so it was only an hour and half drive. Most of my friends were out of town at the time, but Nancy was there. We hung out that evening and made plans to have breakfast before I went back. Not to be an inconvenience I broke into an old professor's office and crashed on his couch. We met for breakfast at Perkins, and she did something I’d never witnessed before. She shared. She opened up to me, and I shared in return. We discussed our fears of the future, and our dreams. We said goodbye in the parking lot, and she gave me hug. She then said she wished she’d known me better. Talk about a kind word with a dash of pain. Even though I went to most of our friends weddings and get togethers, I never got to see her again. I’d get letters every now and then. Some only had a drawing of a middle finger. Last I heard she was married with kids, and living a good life. She’s still the only regret of my love life. I never really saw her among the others till it was too late. She taught me to be more comfortable in my own skin. She also gave me an idea of what I’m looking for. So maybe it’s not really a regret but more of a constant curiosity of what might have been.

There was one other minor regret. Eric later told me that Nancy and her best friend had asked Eric if he and I wanted to go skinny dipping with them. Apparently knowing what’s best for me, he said I would probably not want to. Thanks Eric.

Nancy also had one of my favorite celebrity sightings. After she graduated, she stated working for CSPAN. She would set up the cameras for the House and Senate meetings. Walking down to a camera, she was singing “Staying Alive.” Behind her she heard someone start singing with her. She turned around and sure enough it was John Travolta. That could only happen to Nancy.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

The Work of Mark Romanek

Remember music videos? Images are filmed and put to a song? They used to play them on MTV. Well for those who remember Palm Pictures has putting out collections of seminal music video directors on DVD. The first three were for Spike Jonze, Chris Cunningham, and Michel Gondry. I highly recommend the Jonze and Gondry ones. If you don’t know who Jonze is, well… Gondry went on to direct “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.” They recently released four more DVD’s for: Mark Romanek, Jonathan Glazer, Anton Corbijn, Stéphane Sednaoui. U2 diehards should recognize Corbijn and Sedanoui. Glazer went on to direct “Sexy Beast” and the ultra uncomfortable “Birth.” I actually went with my girlfriend at the time to see “Birth.” Yeah, there was no romance happening that night. I also don’t recommend seeing “Closer” with a date or significant other particularly if you plan to get frisky afterwards.

Anyway, the DVD I picked up was Romanek’s. He directed One Hour Photo. Alright, I hate that I just used films to identify these directors when there videos should be enough. Below is the list of videos on Romanek’s DVD. Over two-thirds of these are great. He’s directed at least four classic (or to be classic) music videos: Jay-Z, Apple, NIN - Closer, and Kravitz. He’s also directed what in my opinion is the probably the greatest music video: Johnny Cash – Hurt.

I remember seeing this video for the first time. I had that "dust in my eye" going on near the end. Every time that piano starts pounding near the end and the cuts of a young Johnny Cash become more frequent I still get a little teary. The main goal of music videos is to advertise and represent the artist. Yet, Romanek actually achieved something I’ve only seen one other time in a music video: emotion. (The other time was the video for Chocolate Genius’ “My Mom,” but that’s another post) It clearly had the same impact on others as evidence in interviews with artists on DVD. Yes, most of the emotion is in Cash singing that song, but the decision to innercut old footage of Cash is what puts it over the top. The point is that it had an impact beyond the music video norm. That’s why it at least belongs in the category of “Greatest Music Videos of All Time.” Remember when MTV used to air the “100 Greatest Music Videos of All Time?” For a long time it was always “Thriller” at numero uno. Then Gn’R’s “November Rain” took over the top spot. Which I still think was ridiculous. “November Rain” was an epic music video, but greatest ever? “Hurt” though belongs. The rest of Romanek’s work is great as well with a few snoozers sprinkled in. Included in the DVD is nice booklet that includes an interview by Spike Jonze. There's also a nice retrospective with the artists he's worked with. He like all these directors on these DVD’s takes the music video commercial and makes it art. So, I recommend at least Netflixing this DVD as well as the others.

Work of Mark Romanek:
Jay Z - 99 Problems (director's cut)
Linkin Park - Faint
Red Hot Chili Peppers - Can't Stop
Johnny Cash - Hurt
Audioslave - Cochise (director's cut)
No Doubt - Hella Good (director's cut)
Mick Jagger - God Gave Me Everything
Janet Jackson featuring Joni Mitchell and Q-Tip - Got Til It's Gone
Fiona Apple - Criminal
Nine Inch Nails - Perfect Drug
Beck - Devil's Haircut
Weezer - El Scorcho (director's cut)
Eels - Novocaine for the Soul
Sonic Youth - Little Trouble Girl
Michael & Janet Jackson - Scream (director's cut)
Madonna - Bedtime Story
R.E.M. - Strange Currencies
G. Love & Special Sauce - Cold Beverage
Nine Inch Nails - Closer (director's cut)
David Bowie - Jump, They Say
Madonna - Rain
Lenny Kravitz - Are You Gonna Go My Way
Keith Richards - Wicked as it Seems (director's cut)
En Vogue - Free Your Mind
kd lang - Constant Craving

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Why I Love Football Season:

It’s not the great match-ups. It’s not the 60 yard bomb. It’s not the crack of the helmets. It’s not the cheerleaders. It’s not watching the Cowboys choke. It’s not listening to the unintentional comedy of ESPN’s Sunday night commentators. I love football season for the Weekly NFL Office Pool. I get to line my pockets with my coworker’s money. I try not to plan on winning the $500 bucks I usually do every season, but it’s difficult when you’re this good. I laugh at those who submit multiple entries. I scoff at those who go to to see who the experts pick. There’s a simple formula to use that will at least give yourself a chance to win, but I’m not going to share. Daddy’s saving for the Xbox 360 so he needs the paper. That’s how I roll.

How the hell did this happen?

So I woke up this morning and was packing my “man purse” for work when I noticed an iBook sitting on my desk. What the hell? I bought the Nano a few weeks ago and now I have an iBook? Sure, I needed a small laptop, but why did I buy Apple? My research pointed to the iBook being a solid deal, but I’ve always worked within the Bill Gates cult. It’s so strange having a well designed piece of machinery. What does this mean? Should I feel guilty that I still have my Dell desktop? Do I have to now bash all things Gatesian including my Xbox? Wait! I have a "man purse?" I don’t know who I am anymore.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Songs I Don’t Want to Hear for the Rest of the Year

Not in any specific order:

Hollaback Girl, Gwen Stefani

Don't Phunk With My Heart, The Black Eyed Peas-Actually I never want to hear anything from these hacks again.

Mr. Brightside, The Killers

Since U Been Gone, Kelly Clarkson

Beverly Hills, Weezer

Holiday, Green Day

Saturday, September 17, 2005


First off let’s touch on a “What the…?” moment. Nintendo finally showed their new controller for their next-gen system. You can read all about the demonstration here. I’m all for advancing design and trying something new, but this seems like it will be trouble in my opinion. Nintendo says it’s supposed to attract new gamers. Yeah, newbies aren’t going to be intimidated by that. Also, since it requires you waving the thing to control it, I could see some possible embarrassing situations um…arising?

Two games displayed at the Tokyo Game Show have gotten me a little giddy. One: Gears of War still looks like it might deliver what it promised. Two: A Ghouls & Ghosts game for the PSP. Ghouls & Ghosts! A Knight running around in tighty whities! Yeah! Hmm...strike that last sentence.

Speaking of video games, last Tuesday was Burnout Day. No it’s not on your calendars and has nothing to do with pot. Two Burnout games were released, one for the consoles, and another for the PSP. The PSP version is simply Burnout 1-3 combined. Burnout Revenge though is a whole new game. I’ve said it before but this is the greatest racing game out there. Even if you hate racing games, I promise you will get a kick out of this. There are two big changes from Burnout 3. First the tracks are not as linear as in the other versions. There are side streets and alleys you can cut through to make up time, along with ramps. Yes, I said ramps. This adds a new takedown (aerial) to the mix. I will say when you finally are able to drop down from above and crush and opponent it’s a wonderful feeling. I can’t recommend this game enough.

Also, Tuesday night was the Rescue Me season finale. Bobby made the comment that the show seems predictable when it comes to the story lines. It does pick up and twist things around after the first few episodes of season one. But, this season finale went where I thought it would, and left me a little disappointed. I think perhaps the bleakness of the show is hurt it in that you know the worse will happen. I still do love the show. Side note: They also played another track from Dulli’s album during the closing minutes of the show.

I know you are all sick of hearing me gush over the Twilight Singers and Afghan Whigs, but I just wanted to give a quick review of Dulli’s Amber Headlights album. So skip to the next paragraph for those uninterested. Hey Bob, thanks for staying around. The fact that this is a “work in progress” shows. It still has a handful of great songs. While the rest are still good, they could use a little more time in the studio. There are two things I noticed about the album. First of all it seems he is musically struggling between his Twilight Singers and his Afghan Whigs. First there are songs like “Pussy Willow” and “Wicked” that run along the lines of the Twilight Singers. Then there’s a song like “Black Swan” that sounds like a combo of Congregation and Black Love era Whigs. Secondly, the Alpha Male character that is prevalent in the Whigs records and this album (“The world is wicked/ I fit right in…” “I smell trouble, girl/that I aim to start…”) doesn’t really exist in Blackberry Belle. Dulli shelved these songs because they didn’t fit his fame of mind now. It makes me wonder if that persona will come back in following records. I do highly recommend the album for those Dulli fans out there. But for the newbies I still suggest Blackberry Belle by the Twilight Singers or 1965 by the Afghan Whigs. Top tracks: “So Tight,” “Cigarettes,” and “Wicked”

I’ve officially become to the end of my rope when it comes to rubbernecks on the road. Everyone bitches and moans about traffic, but they still have to slow down whenever there’s a car on the side of the road. I would almost let them slide when it comes to a big accident, but they’ve had a mile of stopping to see the accident. Move on you sick voyeuristic pricks. If there was a way to give tickets to rubbernecks, I’d be all for it. I can’t tell how frustrated I get after sitting in traffic to realize it’s all because people were slowing down to see a cop give someone a ticket. Also, don’t give me dirty looks when I honk my horn at you. You know you were looking to see something gruesome you sickos. Stop making things worse by trying to get a peek.

If the Cubs played only the Cardinals and the NL West, they would be unbeatable. They can be the only team with a winning record against St. Louis, but they can’t beat the Reds.

I’ve had somewhat high hopes for the new TV season. There are a few shows that I thought might have held some promise. If things go the way of “Threshold” we might be in trouble. That show belongs on the Sci-Fi channel, not national TV. This is what happens when you get an unexpected hit like “Lost.” I’ll be surprised if a single one of these supernatural or sci-fish shows survive the whole season.

I now want to get married. So that when we mention our attempts to bear offspring, I can use the phrase, “We’ve pulled the goalie.” Thank you, Bill Simmons and Bassel.

I watched the first episode of Survivor and was easily bored. The Amazing Race has easily eclipsed this show. There was one nice quote by some girl after her team won the first challenge. “This was the most difficult challenge, yet.” Uh, it’s been the only challenge so far moron, unless you consider making a fool of yourself enough to get on the show. Though, I’m guessing it wasn’t that challenging.

When I was up in Seattle, I bought a sweater at the Gap. Apparently when you spend over $50 you get a free CD of artists performing remakes of their favorite songs. I tried telling the cashier I didn’t want it, but she wouldn’t take “No thank you,” for an answer. So I’m now stuck with the CD. If you want it, let me know. I have no need for an album with that Mraz chump singing “One Love,” or Michelle Branch butchering “Life on Mars.” There was one thing that threw me for a loop when I read the track list.

Joss Stone “God Only Knows” (Beach Boys)
John Legend “Hello It’s Me” (Isley Brothers)
Michelle Williams “Let’s Stay Together” (Al Green)
Jason Mraz “One Love” (Bob Marley)
Keith Urban “Most People I Know Think I’m Crazy” (Billy Thorpe)
Brandon Boyd “Alison” (Elvis Costello)
Michelle Branch “Life On Mars” (David Bowie)

Those all made sense to me in some regard. Mraz needs to slip back into the shadows of coffee shops everywhere. Please! Bowie should have put an end to Branch every thinking to touch "Life on Mars." They are though all great to classic songs. Then there's the following:

Alanis Morissette “Crazy” (Seal)

Ms. Morissette’s choice is a Seal song? No knock against Seal, but Crazy doesn’t really rank up with those others. Ok Alanis, you keep on hoping that acoustic reinterpretation of Jagged Little Pill will revive your career. Meanwhile, I have this fork. Where do you want me to stick it?

I apologize for the last two “me” heavy posts, but I bought a scanner, and have been going a little nuts with it.

Friday, September 16, 2005

I Still Wear My Blankie on My Head

A little while ago, I had a discussion with my former girlfriend on the subject of Hats. Perhaps you yourself have noticed in the pictures I’ve posted that I’m always wearing a hat. Well, she noticed this as well. Her first inclination was that I was bald and hiding it. She’s half right. I am balding, but if you’ve seen “Goodness” it’s not exactly something I’m trying to hide.

You see I’ve been bald before when I was a kid. Back then I actually was embarrassed by it. I was diagnosed with a Wilms’ tumor when I was around 2. My Mom took me in for an ear ache, and I left with a Wilms’ tumor. In case you don’t know a Wilms’ tumor is a tumor of the kidney. How they got to the kidney from the ear I have no idea. For reasons I’m still trying to figure out, I survived. What followed was years of radiation and chemo. Back in the early 70’s they weren’t so proficient in battling cancer. Apparently nowadays they can just chuck the kidney do a little chemo if needed and you’re on your way. Anyway, the chemo meant I lived much of my early years bald. My embarrassment resulted in me always wearing a hat after chemo treatments. My hat of choice was the one you see to your right. No, the hat wasn’t much of an improvement. I never really had a special blanket or stuffed animal. I also never really sucked my thumb. My security was wrapped up in that hat. The benefit of this is parents struggle to keep their kids from clinging to their blanket, or sucking their thumb. They never think of the hat. So I’ve clung to it. Not that exact hat, but I feel more comfortable in a hat. It still holds that sort of security it did as a child. I basically never got rid of my childhood crutch. That is why when you meet me or see me I will most likely be in a hat. Unless, it’s church or I’m in a wedding or something that requires me to be hat free. Eventually, I think my Mom caught on. Though that wasn't till it was far too late for me to give up my hats.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

To Geekdom and Back

Hello Ladies! This picture was taken during the peak of my life. Notice the arrogant pose. That look of disinteresst. I knew I was the shit! From kindergarten to the 3rd grade I ruled the roost. I bullied the younger kids. The girls all wanted me to be Luke Skywalker to their Leia, which was ridiculous and creepy considering how that turned out. Besides, everyone knew Solo was the man, so I had to be Han. I had the cool toys, the cool clothes, and sweet ass bedroom loft all to myself. Even at church, I was the crème de la crème of the bunch. My Dad had helped started the church, so I got in on the ground floor. Again, I was the shit. Then it all went awry. It began with two events. First, there was my 9th birthday party. My Mom planned this lavish party, and I invited everyone. Unknown to me there was one problem. My best friend at the time, Brent was held back to repeat the 2nd grade. We went to the same school and church, so we always hung out. It got to the point were I was being called Brent and he Brad. Of course, I invited him first. I was later made aware by another friend of mine what an error of judgment this was. In fact, I was told that if I didn’t revoke my party invitation to Brent nobody else would come. I didn’t revoke the invitation but my “cool kid” card was. Only four kids I think showed up, but I’d rather had them then a bunch of kids wanting free cake. I still remember us modifying my new race track to see how far we could launch the cars.

The second thing that happened was my parents divorced. Any ego or confidence I had left was completely wiped out by that event. As the case with a lot of kids, moving to a new place, new school, and with no friends can screw you up. The preference towards Star Wars, G. I. Joe, and buliding forts was a hinderence. What didn’t help either was that I didn’t have my Mom to dress me anymore.That’s the best way I can explain the picture to the right. The one nice thing was that if it got too sunny I could just close the drapes to my haircut.

Five years later and things didn’t get any better. Again I had to move. This time it was back to Ohio. I thought for a moment that I would be able to get back together with my previous friends. A few of them were going to my new high school, and we started going to the same church. How wrong I was. I wasn’t the “Good friend” Brad anymore. I was the “I kind of remember you” Brad. It was also at this point that I spent most of my time buried in comic books, and listening to Weird Al. I was also the son of a teacher, which meant I was never invited to parties or other social events. So I collected my comic books, went to my art house movies, and worked as a janitor to pay for it all. I at least had my Mom in town who worked hard to improve my fashion sense. It didn’t really take till college though.

I was still a hopeless cause till my fourth year of undergrad (there would be five years total). It was then that I realized how to turn my shyness into the appearance of cool, and to not give a rat’s ass. I may have been too shy to talk. But, if you just lean back in your chair, and have the look of disinterest on your face, it appears you don’t give a shit and would rather be somewhere else. I relied on this numerous times till I worked through the overbearing shyness. I also stopped caring that I was apparently the only die hard Neil Diamond fan, or that I would get in trouble for seeing movies, or that jeans weren’t allowed to be worn in class. It took awhile but this was a big step. I stopped trying to be everything to everyone in an effort to make friends. If you didn’t care, or you thought I was weird, I didn’t care. I didn’t regain my lost coolness, but I didn’t care about the geek part. Grunge hitting the airwaves, and the underground becoming mainstream in the 90’s, also helped too. This was evident, when at my five year high school reunion I had numerous people talking about the comic books they are reading. These were the same people who laughed at my speech on “Comic Books Aren’t for Kids Anymore.”

That leads us up to present day. I dress a little better. Some people think I’m cool. I can function socially in a group of five or more. But, I’m still that shy skinny punk who needs a sign from God in order to kiss a girl. I guess I never got back from geekdom hell, I just learned to make it home, and enjoy the compant of my fellow inmates.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

My Rock N’ Roll Fantasy

I know I’m not the only person who has had dreams of being in a rock band. I will admit that I have perhaps put to much day dreaming into it. In fact, I have two rock n’ roll fantasies. The first is the more realistic fantasy where I am simply the cool quiet bassist who stands at the side of the stage with a cigarette, and a few groupies who know what being a bass player is all about. There would be no big stadium tours, no MTV, and no national radio airplay. We would be happy selling out clubs around the world, and playing for the fans of real rock n’ roll.

Then there is the grand Rock N’ Roll Fantasy. This is also where most of my day dream time goes toward. Yesterday, I was actually trying to determine what size my choir and string section would be. You see this isn’t a dream about me being in front of the mic with a throng of thousands singing my lyrics. This dream is about me creating the greatest rock n’ roll experience of all time. It’s Phil Spector’s wall of sound with a dash Parliament’s bounce, Rolling Stones’ swagger, James Brown’s funk, Plant’s howl, all simmering in black gospel! This is no shoe gazing mope rock or nappy world music jam shit. We are not the next “It” group. This is not the latest VW commercial jingle. This is fucking goose bump inducing rock n’ roll! Twin guitar attack? Duh. Hammond B Organ? Done. Therimin? Of course. Horn section? Done. Strings? Done. Choir? Hell yes! Prudes will lust, and sinners will repent! The blind will see! The cripple will dance! The geek will get the girl! This is ROCK N ROLL!

Of course I can’t write music, or play any instruments, but I can dream.

Monday, September 12, 2005


I give! Those regular readers and friends know that I have never been a big fan of the Apple. Yes, they were all very well designed products. They always seemed to be overpriced. I always saw Apple as the luxury car of the computer industry. Sure I would look good with it, but I could get more features for less money going another route. I had a particularly strong distain for the iPod. My first Mp3 player was my Dell "ghetto pod." That was then followed by my Zen Micro. I still love my Zen Micro, and would have gladly purchased the new Zen Micro with the color screen. The problem is it still hasn't come out. So fastforward to last Thursday. There I am checking my e-mail when I click on one with the subject: iPod nano. I will admit I was smitten. There it was with it's beautiful color screen and it was so tiny. So incredibly tiny. So, I cried "uncle!" I went and bought one. I still really like my Zen Micro, but the iPod nano has yet to leave my side. Yes, I feel incredibly guilty about it in all respects. But come on! Look at it!

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Jiff's Wedding w/ photos

To begin let us get a few non wedding moments out of the way. This being my first trip to Seattle, I was quite impressed. I could feel my lungs filling with fresh air with each drag of my cigarette. Also, you don't get many views like thise in Los Angeles:

I arrived at the airport early Friday. I had forgotten to set my alarm and I woke up with less than an hour to get to the airport. Thank goodness I flew out of LBC. Also, when the pilot say the current temperature in Seattle is 54, what's the first thing you think of? "Sweaters!" is what first went through my mind. I met up with Sara. She is a firend from the Regent days. She would be my travel buddy for the weekend. She's always good for a laugh.

Our first mission once we checked in was to buy some sweaters. Sara had not planned accordingly either. In the little visitors brochure at the hotel they offered 15% off at this mall. Here's a little advice. When a mall uses 15% offers to entice shoppers, the mall probably blows. This mall was no exception. The first problem was that it was located in Puyallup. The trip was worthless. How does any store in Washington not constantly carry sweaters? It was 54 degrees in September! Aren't sweaters needed year round? The trip did have one highlight. Here is the biggest pumpkin I've ever seen in person. It was HUGE!
I then went to the rehearsal dinner, while Sara did the wise thing and got some sleep. The dinner was nice. I hadn't seen Jeff in quite some time, and got to finally meet his fiance, Kristin.

The next day, Sara and I finally found a decent mall. We then went down to the Pike area in downtown Seattle. We ate at Etta's, walked around a little till we had to get back for the wedding. My whole time wandering around I kept thinking I have to come back and take my time with Seattle.

Finally the wedding:
The groomsmen:

"My Buddy Steven" sings:

Tim and Anna:

Bobby and Dal:

Me and Sara:

(I was caddying before the wedding, so I could buy a wedding gift.)

To explain this cake I will simply say that Jeff is from Texas. There was also a real wedding cake, but this one that warranted a picture:

Considering it was pouring buckets a few hours before the wedding, Jeff and Kristin were certainly blessed to get that window of sun. It was great seeing Lauren again. Jeff's family is always great. Missed Mol Jr. not being able to make it. One of the odd things is that Bobby, Tim, Dal and I were constantly getting recognized for the "Goodness" shorts we did. It was like being a mini-mini-mini celebrity. I hope this will somehow spur us on to make some more.

Overall, the trip was great. It was nice seeing the Jeff's side again. It's most likely the last time I'll see them. Who knows? I never did get to go to Safeco Field, but after hanging out in downtown I knew I'd be coming back to Seattle. So big ups to Jeff and Kristin. He finally found someone who he feels comfortable touching, and big ups to Seattle the land of rain, seafood, and really big pumpkins.!

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Ode to Jeff

So, I’m off to wedding #2 this weekend. This time I only have to go to Seattle. He’s been my roommate twice. He goes by Jiff in the MOL Nation. I call him Jeff, or Jeffrey and sometimes Jimmy, but usually it’s Jeff. This is my tribute to Jeff.

I met Jeff at Regent University. I’ve bitched and moaned about wasting my time at Regent, but most of the friends these days come from some Regent connection. Hell, I even got my job because of a Regent connection. So I should stop bitching, even though it’s still the community college of grad schools. It was my first month or so into my MA. The only friend I’d made since being there was a Laurie Spadea. Hummana. Hummana. I’d seen Jeff in my other classes. He and Rob Strain were always sitting around and laughing. It seemed like they’d know each other before Regent. I forget what class it was, but the two of them started up a conversation with me. We talked about Beavis and Butthead I think. Jeff would later say it was because of my smiley face watch that he struck up the conversation. Finally, there were a couple guys who didn’t drink from the Pat Kool-Aid jug. In our Intro to Video class, (Yes, there was an Intro to Video class in MA Film and TV program) I gave of the hot chick (Spadea) to hang with Jeff. I wormed my into their production group, and it went on from there. I would later on become his roommate till Jeff wisely went to USC to get a real education. I would later join him, Bobby and Tim in LA, and we would be roommates once again.

My Favorite Jeff Moments:

Video Projects: Jeff, Rob, and I would always work as a group to do the assignments. We constantly got in trouble with either students or faculty with our projects. It began with our first project when we got notes that my comment on Michael W. Smith touching my ass was inappropriate. We came off as racist with Jeff’s Syrupee skit when in actuality it was more offensive to the mentally handicap. When my directing project had Jeff killing Sara with a lawn mower because he was scared to break up with her, it didn’t come across very well either. We even conspired with Jeff when he used his directing project to woo a girl he had a crush on. The culmination of all these were Rob’s projects. Somehow it was always Jeff and I working together to write them. I can proudly say Jeff was my first writing partner. Yes, Rob’s projects always came off better than our own.

Let’s Ride:

Sometimes Jeff just likes to drive with no destination in mind. I was privileged enough to join him on two of these trips. The first one was when the Regent group made plans to go to the Outer Banks. We stopped at Kitty Hawk (Location of the Wright Brother’s first flight) and walked among the sand dunes. Then we just kept going, and going. We drove all the way to the ferry to Ocacoke Island and then turned back. Jeff drove the whole way. The second trip was here in California. Jeff came into the apartment saying the guys (Tim, Bobby and Him) were going for a drive and if I wanted to come. Of course I did. The mountains had recently been hit with some snow, so certain roads were blocked off. Eventually we were able to find our way up to the Sequoia National Forest. There’s something about driving under a sign that says X number of people have died on this road. With no barrier and a sheer drop off I thought the number was a little low. Again we drove till we literally couldn’t drive any further. On the way back, we drove through a small town that was having some kind of festival. We stopped for dinner there, and took some time to walk around. Bobby, I think, even rode that “spin till you puke” ride.

The Christine Incident:

In grad school, Jeff had a slight crush on girl named Christine. Only he eventually got the girl. Since I had never seen the crusher get the crushee, I was rather impressed. There was one problem though. They were oil and water. Being the roommate, I was privy a seat to the arguments and frustration this relationship wrought. It’s quite an anthropological study watching the beginning and end of a relationship. The highlight being when they faked door slamming fight to see what I would do.

The Bus Strike:

When I first moved out here, I didn’t have a car. This meant I had to rely on LA’s wonderful Mass Transit system. My second year there, the bus drivers went on strike. Jeff, God bless him, drove me to work each day till the strike ended. Big ups to Chris too, who gave me the ride home.

My Mom:

Jeff was the first to know when my Mom took a turn for the worse. He knew even before me, because my cell phone had died, and my step-father had left a message on our phone. There was something comforting having Jeff know without me telling him. He also drove me to the airport. Jeff has a way of getting you to talk. Call it a gift. On the drive to the airport, he just drove and listened. I will always remember that.

Top Phrases Added to My Vocabulary by Jeff:

“Jews and Berries? I Don’t Understand?”
“Wheels Off”
“Gaia! Gaia!”
“What is Up?
“Dirty Pretty Girl.”
“Would you like 2 CD’s?”

That’s a glimpse into the impact Jeff’s had in my life. We never saw eye to eye on a lot of things, but he was there when you needed him. I always admires that he is always seeking. He’s always thirsty for knowledge. He is a good Godly man. He also does a top notch Ted Koppel. I raise my 2O fluid oz. bottle of Pepsi to you Jeff. God bless you, and may he give you the joy you’ve given us.

When Did Bon Jovi Become the MLB House Band?

Somewhere this conversation took place:

Record Exec #1: What are we going to do? MTV won't play us. All we get from VH1 is "Behind the Music." How are we going to reach the masses?

Record Exec #2: I'm stumped. We need some avenue, some platform to get this CD of steroid infused pop sap.

Record Exec #1: Steroid induced?

Record Exec #2: Yeah. Steroi- Baseball!

Record Exec #2: Fuck yeah! Who loves Bon Jovi?

Record Exec #1 &2: Baseball Fans!

Record Exec #1: We have so earned are paychecks today.

Record Exec #2: Damn straight. Wanna go hit on the new interns?

Mini Ramblings

I was sitting in the Atlanta airport eating Popeyes, when the Kanye West rant came on the TV. It was such a surreal moment. It is also one of the funniest things on TV this year. If you haven't seen Mike Myer's squirm click here. I kept thinking this would have made a great SNL skit.

Speaking of the Atlanta airport, I must give it big ups. It is probably my favorite major city airport. It has wide walkways, decent eating selection, PSP store, and the greatest thing of all: smoking rooms. Getting off a five hour flight with a man jabbing his feet into you can make you really want a cigarette. It also has a nice community feeling. Everyone mooches a light off the guy who snuck one on his plane. We are all there together, slowly killing ourselves. No, I never talk to a single one of them. LAX has nothing on Atlanta's airport.

The gadget whore in me was trembling with excitement when I saw the new Apple Nano. I've tried my best to stay away from Apple, but this might have broken my will.

Next Tuesday my video game buying drought ends. Burnout Revenge for all consoles and Burnout Legends for PSP come out that day. Yes, I will buy them both. It's the greatest video game racing franchise out there. Stick it Grand Turismodorks! Your game bores. Then the week after that "We Love Katamari" comes out. JOY!