Wednesday, April 28, 2004

It's 9:30 and here is how I have spent my night so far.

Got home from work around 6:30. Went right to work unpacking and trying to get my life in order. Sounds normal enough right?

Well... here is where it turned, circa 7:15pm.

I re-potted a plant. I took the big plant in the corner of my living room out and did some pruning and put the pig in a new pot.

Then I came inside and started to re-arrange my furniture. Figuring out where good sight lines were out of the windows, for lighting, etc etc...

Then I went and swept the floors in my kitchen and bathroom.

Then I washed the dishes. (By hand--no dishwasher boys and girls.)

Then I said to myself, out loud, "I'm not a man!!"

I need to do something stereotypically masculine. Scratch myself or watch one of those motorcycle shows on cable (what is that called?? with the guy who has the LONG goatee??) or go drinking at this little slutty bar downtown where every Wednesday night is "Tinnie Bikini Night" for the bar's wait staff. (And it's also college night in downtown GR--so all drinks are half off from 7 to 11. I could go prowling for young college girls since I'm "old" now I guess.... that would be "masculine").

Instead, I'll probably sit here and read or find someone to chat with until I get tired--and then I'll lay in bed, not being able to go to sleep because I will reconfigure all the furniture in my head that I had positioned earlier.

I'm not a man!

Shalom. (Said as low as I can possibly speak)


Current song: Elefant's "Sunlight Makes Me Paranoid"

I'm unashamedly a music freak. I think I have certain credentials that "allow" me to be--and I'm trying to continually create new music, so that I don't just sit in judgment on music, as a critic, without contributing something to the "judge-able pot." So I wanted to pass along two pieces of music news that I thought might be entertaining.

First: London's magazine "Evening Standard" asked its readers to vote for their votes of Most Hated Music Acts In The World. Here were their votes:
1. Busted (Evidently a platinum-selling British boy band. I have never heard of them, but that description alone gets my approval!)
2. The Darkness (Strange to have the Brits vote against their own, isn't it?!? Granted, they are ugly as can be, but let's give The Darkness a little credit for creativity and writing a song you can't HELP but sing, even if you hate it!)
3. Avril Lavigne (No one to defend her)
4. Courtney Love (Prosecutes AND sentences herself!!)

Second: "Blender" magazine--GREAT publication for album reviews. And typically good for some great sarcasm and biting commentary, for those of us who are into that kind of "evil." In their May issue, they voted for "The 50 Worst Songs Ever." I LAUGHED SO HARD SO MANY TIMES!! I wanted to share with you just a few of the entries, leaving for you the Top 40 to find out yourself. But, here are a few of their comments about Numbers 50-41.

“My Heart Will Go On” 1998
And on and on and on…

Lop off all but the first 20 seconds of this monster ballad, and it still merits a slot on this list for the unconscionable crime of adding pan-flute solos to the pop lexicon. But it doesn’t stop there: With a voice full of ornamental quivers and trembles, Canadian dynamo Céline Dion pushes arena-size schmaltz into the red, first cutting her syllables preciously short, then strangling each one out. Never has a song about all-consuming love sounded so trivial and been so inescapable — it powered the Titanic soundtrack to a year-topping 10 million copies sold, and made millions more pray that an iceberg would somehow hit Dion.

Worst Moment: The third chorus, where she goes from soft to eye-bleedingly loud.

“I’m Too Sexy” 1992
The answer to Spinal Tap’s question “What’s wrong with being sexy?”

Right Said Fred were horrible, bald novelty Brits whose one claim to fame was a song that announced that they were “too sexy” for most things, from “New York” to “my cat.” Alas, singer Richard Fairbrass resembled Midnight Oil’s Peter Garrett, and was therefore “too sexy” for precisely nothing. The song spawned a welter of grating catchphrases starting with “I’m too sexy” repeated endlessly by annoying people: “I’m too sexy for my tractor,” etc. Disturbingly, the Freds, as nobody calls them, are still going.

Worst Moment: The so-called chorus, in which, instead of mumbling, Fairbrass tries to sing. Stop it. Stop it now!

“The Only Thing That Looks Good on Me Is You” 1996
It’s Great-Uncle Disgusting — from Canada!

When Adams chose to do sexy after 15 years of chaste, aw-shucks rockin’, even his fans were stunned — as if they’d just seen a stag film starring Richie Cunningham. “I don’t look good in no Armani suits,” he leered in the song’s only believable moment, before suggesting he’d rather “wear” the song’s female protagonist over a blues riff like someone explaining ZZ Top to an accountant. This wasn’t the creepiest track off his album 18 Til I Die; that accolade goes to a song called “(I Wanna Be) Your Underwear.”

Worst Moment: “…There’s only one thing that fits me like it should.” Ick

“Hangin’ Tough” 1989
Boy-band blueprint!

It sucked the Swing out of New Jack, bleached the Blues out of Rhythm &, and featured white boys calling themselves “funky” despite some very unfunky denim vests. This Boston quintet triggered a hormonal rush among 13-year-old girls and intense confusion among their boyfriends, and paved the way for megaselling boy bands who ran low on talent and high on dumb hats. This 1988 hit was all crossed arms and scowls, but the tuff-guy routine didn’t gel: These nancy boys make the Sharks and Jets look like G-Unit.

Worst Moment: The boys warn: “Don’t cross our path or you’re gonna get stomped!” Scary!

“Follow Me” 2000
Sleaze-rap DJ goes solo, blows like Hootie

Breaking out on his own, the leading light of Kid Rock’s “Detroit playas” reneges on his boss’s promise to “cause chaos” and “rock like Amadeus.” He does, however, cause nausea and rock like Muzak with his nobody-saw-it-coming lite-FM stylings, hummin’, strummin’ and practically promisin’ to tuck you in at night. The unexpected bonus? It gives hope to everyone awaiting the Terminator X collection of Air Supply covers.

Worst Moment: Knowing every rhyme before it happens — the first time you hear the song.

“We Didn’t Start the Fire” 1989
Can you fit a cultural history of the twentieth century into four minutes? Uh, no!

Despite its bombastic production, “We Didn’t Start the Fire” resembles a term paper scribbled the night before it’s due. As the song progresses, Joel audibly realizes he can’t cram it all in: The ’70s get four bellowed words amid the widdly-woo guitars and meet-thy-maker drums. The chorus denies responsibility for any events mentioned, clearing up the common misconception that Billy Joel developed the H-bomb.

Worst Moment: “China’s under martial law, rock & roller cola wars!”: No way does conflating Tiananmen Square with Michael Jackson selling Pepsi trivialize a massacre.

“I Wanna Sex You Up” 1991
Small-penis alert!

These Oklahoma R&B smoothies looked like rejects from a Benetton ad and sounded like flunkies from the Keith Sweat School of Horny Jamz. This is one long string of fake falsetto moans — there’s more heat in an Herbal Essences commercial — and the imagery ranges from perplexing (“We can do it till we both wake up”) to downright unpleasant (“Makin’ love until we drown”). Not recommended for the bedroom, unless your bedroom also features leopard-print picture frames, mirrored ceilings and a five-gallon tub of Astroglide from Costco.

Worst Moment: Toward the end, la-la-la’s creep in under whispered phrases like “Lay back and enjoy the ride.”

Hope you enjoyed those opinions as much as I did.

Current song: Belle & Sebastian's "I'm Waking Up To Us"



Tuesday, April 27, 2004

I have officially moved. All of my things are out of the storage facility and in my new place. It was a bittersweet move. Glad to be here--sad to be gone from there. Now it's on to unpacking and figuring out how to arrange things.

One of my first "jobs" was to assemble my bed. I don't have your traditional bed--I sleep on a futon. I got it, initially, because my recording studio had to double as my bedroom. So I wanted something that wouldn't take up much room. It took me almost an hour to put the stupid futon together. At one point, after yelling pretty loudly to (at?) no one, I said out loud (again to/at no one) "I'm getting my ass kicked by a fake bed!" I almost decided to continue sleeping on the floor--it doesn't take much thought or mechanical abilities.

I'm terrible at putting things together. I consider myself above-average intellectually, but I struggle with assembly of furniture, bookshelves, toys, etc etc. Everything except electronic equipment. That all seems to be logical to me.

I prove daily that I'm not the stereotypical male.

It's the 27th day of April. It's snowing. I'm furious.

Current song: "Recycled Air" by The Postal Service.

Unrelated thoughts:

>> I only read three blogs these days: Scott's, Cait's and Liz's. Anyone have more blog suggestions?
>> I think there is something in the water here in Grand Rapids. I've had a dull stomach ache for three weeks, heightened when I drink a lot of water.
>> I thought water was supposed to be GOOD for you!
>> My birthday was uneventful, other than having a great time with Amish Aaron and his little girl.
>> I want to stop using words like "nice" and "good." They communicate nothing. (Thanks to David Sedaris for the inspiration.)
>> I hope no one describes me as "nice" or "good."

Current song: "Quit Doin' It" by Mates of State.

I don't think my Britney experiment demonstrated very much. I did have about 20 hits the next day, but not a surprising amount of visitors. It did provide me with a lot comments though, all of which made me laugh. I'm not sure I care that much anymore about many people stopping by anyway. I agree with Cait's assessment of the blogging "world" right now--people just aren't that interested anymore. Myself included I suppose.... I hope the half-dozen people who read regularly will continue to stop by.

Point of excitement--new Sims coming out! In the new version, the Sims actually mimic life--they age, can pro-create, and die! And the little Sims actually carry on a blueprint of their parents... Unreal! I also read about the new GTA that will be out in October. GTA--San Andreas! There will be a Grand Theft party in Chicago that I WILL be back for.

Do I look like a lonely video game/internet loser now?!?! Or did I look like that before and I just didn't realize or want to accept it??

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