Saturday, December 27, 2008

A cloud of illness

Sickness has settled down on our house for Christmas and maybe New Year's -- we'll see. One family member has croup which caused us to go to the ER on Christmas Eve. All is better now, but it was scary there for a while because she was working so hard to breath. Now another member has come down with some sort of stomach bug and so we'll have to work through that. Not much fun, but I am feeling like the walls are closing in on me!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Facebook = massive time suck

It's not like I update this blog very often to begin with, but now I am more active on Facebook, and it's seriously distracting me from all sorts of things including updating this blog. It wasn't really until my wife joined that I really paid much attention to my FB profile, but now...!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Monkeyin' around

Here are some recent pictures of Jane, including some of her dressed up for Halloween as a monkey. We actually could not convince her to get in her costume on Halloween night (she put up a convincing counter argument: hysterics), so these pics were taken on Saturday when she was much more agreeable.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Jane runs the Army 10-miler!

OK, not really, but she is now officially a walking toddler! We're all very excited, but maybe a tad unready for the whole transition to walking. But so far, so good. No black eyes or scary falls -- yet. Just kidding. It's pretty amazing to watch her go, and improve her balance, too. They grow up fast, as they say.

Here's a short video of an early walk. A warning about the video: you may want to turn your sound down before viewing because there is loud yelling from excited parents. :-)

And here are some more recent pictures.

Go 'Skins!

I don't think I've had this much to cheer about in a looong time. It feels good. Four and one -- who woulda thunk it at the beginning of the season??

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

One week, three shows

Three shows in one week is too many, at least for an oldster like myself. I feel like I'm still catching up on sleep.

Last week started out with the Kooks show at the 9:30 club on Monday night. It was a sold out show. Overall it was a good show, but I had some problems with Kooks. They have good songs, and they're energetic, but they just seemed to be trying too hard: singer's got overly dramatic stage moves and singing, guitarist changing guitars too much. I don't want to make it sound like I don't like 'em because I do, but I found those things to be distracting.

At the last minute, we decided to go to the Gray Matter reunion show on Friday at the Black Cat. This was a fun show. GM played for a little over an hour, playing stuff from Take it Back and the first album. They were rockin'. The crowd's age was mixed, old and young. I did manage to get most of a pint spilled all over me. Some girl was standing in front of me, at the back edge of the pit, with a full pint glass full of what later smelled like Sierra Nevada. Of course, she got knocked, and then the beer went flying all over me. Not the best move standing at the edge of the pit with a glass of beer. Interesting thing at this show was that there were no people taller than me standing in front of me! Are punk fans shorter than average? At almost every other show I go to, there is at least one person taller than me who stands directly in my line of sight. But, that always happens at 9:30... maybe people who go to the Black Cat are shorter than average. Hmmm...

The next night (Saturday) was the Paul Weller show at 9:30 club. This was a show that was lukewarm on, but I went because it's Paul Weller. I'm not into his solo stuff, in fact, I don't own any of it. But I was a big fan of the Jam, so he'll always have a certain stature in my mind. I was mixed about this show. On one hand, it was cool to see Paul Weller energetic and playing a guitar and performing like he means it. On the other hand, he played a bunch of mellow stuff. I had to duck out while that was going on. The crowd loved all of it though, and then went nuts when he finally played a Jam song, Town Called Malice (which was great). Fun fact learned at this show: mods are rebellious! This was demonstrated by the fact that Weller himself lit up while on stage (DC smoking ban be damned!). This by itself is not the only indication that mods are rebellious since other performers at 9:30 have lit up while on stage. The real indication came when a mod standing next to me by the bar said to his friend "man, I really wanna cigarette. and not outside either, I want one right here like him [pointing to Weller]!" He then proceeded to light up right next to the bar and smoke, albeit *very* discreetly. It didn't last long either since I'm sure he was worried he'd be tossed out, plus it's probably not that enjoyable to smoke so sneakily.

And that was the end of a long but fun week. Now comes rest for a while.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Clean up your web presence if you're searching for a job

This article references a study showing that about 20% of all employers are doing web research on job applicants. So, in other words, they're looking at blogs (ahem), Facebook and MySpace profiles, etc, for a look at applicants' "character".

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Dark Chrome Strummer

(I'm writing this in the new Google Chrome browser... just downloaded it and started using it today so it's too early to know what to make of it.)

This past weekend was fun but a bit active. We did the usual weekend stuff: errands, cleaning, etc., but we also got to mix in a few trips w/ Jane to eat out. We also visited my new twin nieces now that they're home from the hospital. Very cute!

We also made it to the movies... we haven't done that in probably two years. I *think* the last movie we saw in the theater was The Lady in the Water which I didn't like too much. This time we did it right. This time we saw Dark Knight and we saw the IMAX version. We saw it at the National Museum of Natural History at a 5:30pm show, and it was sold out. The movie was pretty much everything I had hoped it would be and more (ie, IMAX). Liz and I both really liked it. It was awesome. Did I say we liked it?

So that is the "dark" and "chrome" part of the title. The "strummer" refers to Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten, which I also watched this weekend. (Yes, a bit of movie watching this weekend. It was a long weekend.) I thought this was great, too, but of course in a different way. Being a big Clash fan, and to a lesser degree a fan of Joe Strummer's solo stuff, I was very eager to see this documentary. It certainly didn't disappoint, but it did depict him as a human, faults and all. But I appreciated seeing that aspect of him. I've read books on the Clash and they have implied that he was maybe a hypocrite or maybe even a phony because of the way treated people. But I think we all have our contradictions, and we all have our demons and episodes of bad judgment or maybe you can call it immaturity. But I think the movie showed how he got past that stuff, went through a period of "darkness" as they put it, and then came back. It was a very interesting, funny, and also sad movie about a great musician. I would've liked to have met him.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

First steps!

On Friday, Jane took her first two steps on her own! She's been walking around with me or Liz holding her hands in the last few weeks, but this was the first time she took steps on her own. Wow, it's very exciting, but as Apple says "this changes everything!"

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Colorado Rocks!

Last week we got back from a trip to Colorado. We were there for a week, attending a wedding in Ouray and also visiting family in Colorado Springs. It was a fun trip, and Colorado was beautiful. And, Jane was great and did really well throughout all the traveling we did, even with the time change.

Here's a travelogue...

We arrived in Denver last Thursday, July 30. It was Jane's first plane ride (and our first plane ride as parents w/ baby in tow), so we were a bit nervous about how things would go. But everything went really well -- Jane slept most of the way and was otherwise really good on the plane. Phew! We drove from Denver down to Colorado Springs where we were visiting family. We stayed in Colorado Springs for one night, and then it was off for a drive through the Rocky Mountains to Ouray, a small town surrounded by mountains in southwest Colorado for a wedding.

The drive to Ouray was long, but really good. The scenery was amazing! It seemed like every mile I said "wow." The highest point on the drive was Monarch Pass which was 11,000 feet. The views were incredible. We also went through several river valleys which were lush and green. We took US Route 50 through the mountains, going through towns of various sizes, many of which started as mining towns: Canon City (home of 13 penitentiaries!), Salida, Gunnison, and Montrose. The pictures we took just don't do the scenery justice.

When we got to Ouray late afternoon on Friday, July 31. Ouray is a very small town of around 800 people with only paved road. But it's a beautiful setting at the head of a river valley and surrounded by mountains on three sides. We were there for one of Liz's old friend's wedding. We spent Friday night at a rehearsal dinner party. And Saturday in the morning we hiked up to the Box Canyon Falls, a local waterfall, and then up a mountain to a bridge that had great views of the town. Saturday evening was the wedding, and it was very nice. It was an outdoor wedding under the mountains. Again, Jane was great throughout the wedding even though she was it was way past her bedtime.

We took off from Ouray on Sunday morning to head back to Colorado Springs. The drive back was just as great, in fact, it took less time, and in some ways the scenery was even better than the drive to Ouray. We got back to Colorado Springs in the late afternoon.

Back in Colorado Springs, we spent the rest of our time (about 3.5 days) visiting with Cathy and Doug and their kids. It was great to see them -- they moved from MD back in February, so we haven't seen them since then. We went to a pretty park with Cathy, Gammy, Braeden, Abby, and Jane for a picnic and some playground time. That was fun; there are some pictures of me on a seesaw -- that's my best event. (Oh yeah, we had to drive on Rollercoaster Road to get to the park -- not making that up.) And, we visited the Cheyenne Mountain (yes, the home of NORAD) Zoo with Cathy, Gammy, Braeden, and Abby. Jane liked the monkeys (as did Dad) and the giraffes. The zoo was literally on the side of the Cheyenne mountain. Liz, Jane, and I went to Garden of the Gods, a park of natural rock formations. I took a lot of pictures there, and then we visited Manitou Springs for some lunch. If you hadn't guessed, Garden of the Gods was beautiful, as was pretty much all the scenery we came in contact with.

We got home Thurs, Aug 7, pretty late -- our flight out of Denver was delayed -- so we were tired.

Take a look at all the pictures we took.

This is a map of our travel routes:

View Larger Map

Monday, July 21, 2008

Is Google Making Us Stupid?

This is a pretty thought-provoking article about the Web and how it may be affecting our minds and how we think and process information. Of course, the ironic thing is I didn't finish reading it.

Is Google Making Us Stupid?

Nats Park

A few Sundays ago, we went to our first Nats game at the new stadium. I think we both agreed that the experienced was mixed. The day we went was pretty crowded since the Nationals were playing the Orioles. Of course, the stadium is brand new, and so everything looked great and new. Our seats were great, just a few rows back from the Nats' dugout on the first baseline. The field was beautiful, and the jumbotron was very... big.

BUT, it was also really hot, and we had seats in the sun and we didn't realize they got ridiculously hot in the sun. Liz had a hard time sitting in them because her shorts weren't long enough to provide protection. There are big ugly parking garages that sit and block any sort of view of the city past the outfield walls. It seems they're still ironing out the kinks even after 3 months of being open. The lines were long, they ran out of concessions, and the food was super expensive. It's true the stadium doesn't have much character, I guess, but I'm not sure what kind of character I'd expect from a brand new stadium.

I am really hopeful, though, that when they finish developing that part of town that it will be lively and fun and full of action. It seems that will happen, but you never know. And hopefully the team will win more than lose. That could never hurt.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Crafty Bastards...

Yes, we did go, but we only managed to get there a bit before it shut down. It was super hot, so we breezed through the thing in probably about a half hour. I wanted to go to support this type of thing because I think it's good for SS. But the thing about these events is that they are selling stuff that is cool and kitschy, but it's stuff that you don't really need. So we didn't support it with any purchases. It seemed to be well attended though, even at the end of the event. We missed all the bands, too. Hopefully, they'll keep holding it in SS.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Crafty Bastards in SS

This year, there is a Crafty Bastards event in Silver Spring (in addition to the one that is in Adams Morgan). They're gonna have live music too... hopefully we'll be able to make it.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Root Boy Slim and Wikipedia

I stumbled upon Root Boy Slim's wikipedia entry and found it sorta interesting. I never really liked his stuff that they used to play on the old 'HFS, but I came on his entry in the usual roundabout web route. Started at 30 Days of Night (vampire movie I watched tonight -- pretty good!). That movie was based on a graphic novel written by Steve Niles, who played bass for Gray Matter. From there I found my way to an entry for Count Gore De Vol (!?), then an entry for the Bayou, which led to Root Boy. And there you have it. Sometimes these rabbit holes are useful.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Rehoboth Beach for Memorial Day weekend

We just got back from a fun weekend at Reboboth Beach. We shared a house with four other families and their kids. Of course, with that many kids there was some chaos, but aside from the kiddie mayhem, it was enjoyable. The weather was perfect all weekend: mid- to high-70s during the day, in the 60s at night, and clear skies. We had some good meals, Jane got her first taste of the beach (literally), and we tried to relax as much as we could.

Here are some pictures from the trip.

Jane's First Birthday

Jane is now one year old! All the cliches about time flying and kids growing up fast have already begun to ring true -- it *is* hard to believe that it's been a whole year since she was born. It has really flown by. We had a small birthday party for her, and she had fun. She wasn't totally into the cupcake and didn't dive into it like some kids do. She studied it more than tasted it.

There are some other new developments/favorite activities that she's doing now. One thing is she loves climbing up the stairs. It always makes her happy when she gets to the top. She'll usually let out little yells. She is also pulling up all the over place and cruising as well. It looks like she is also dangerously close to standing on her own. She seems to want to do it but is not quite there yet. She's got two bottom teeth coming in, and the doctor says some teeth on the top are not too far behind. She's off the formula (yes!) and is happily eating regular food, although she doesn't like meat too much but loves her veggies -- a budding vegetarian?

Here are some pictures from her birthday party. (I've moved over to because it's much easier, and time is a premium these days.)

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Black Keys @ 9:30 Club, May 13

My thoughts on this show are mixed. I like the band, and I've now seen them three times. But every time I always think "well, that was pretty good, but not great". Dunno. I should probably stop seeing 'em. I like their records well enough. I don't love 'em though.

They definitely rock. The drummer is great to watch -- he just beats the crap out of the drums. The guitarist rocks -- he really fills up the sound (no bass). But during the set, I found myself a bit bored at times. And, I'm no master musician, but these guys definitely play on feel and not strict time -- they are not tight but super loose. The crowd was loving it, though -- sold out show. In fact, they sold out two nights at the 9:30. NPR recorded it too.

It was fun to get out, but I think I'll pass next time they come along.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Charleston for graduation

Over Mother's Day weekend, all of us (plus my brother's family, my sister, and father) drove down to Charleston, SC, for my sister's graduation from College of Charleston. We were only there for about a day and a half which made the trip a bit of blur, but we enjoyed it. The downtown area is really nice -- like a southern version of Georgetown or Annapolis. Lots of old historic buildings and trendy shopping. We drove down and back -- we broke up the ride down into two legs by staying overnight in North Carolina. We drove back in one shot though, which turned into an 11hr drive home in almost constant rain. That was pretty bad. But through it all Jane was great (and so was Liz), so everyone got home in one piece... :-)

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

San Francisco on the company dime

I recently got back from a business trip to San Fran. I went to the Interwoven conference, GearUp 2008. The conference was pretty good, considering a large chuck of my time was spent in rooms about 3 floors below street level listening to discussions of varying degrees of usefulness. But that's what a conference is, and that's what I knew I'd be doing. They fed us pretty well, and the hotel was pretty nice. And the topics were generally pretty good.

There were a couple of good speakers. One was Guy Kawasaki, who was highly entertaining. He's written several books and is currently a venture capitalist. Tim Ferris spoke too, and he was interesting as well. He just wrote a book called "The 4-Hour Work Week". He looks like a better-looking Steve-o from Jackass.

San Francisco, what little time I spent actually in the city, was great. It was my third time there. I managed to walk around a bit. The hotel was in the downtown / South of Market area, so I walked around SoMa a bit and then down to the Embarcadero along the water. One night I joined the local culture in a pub called the Chieftain and had a couple pints while witnessing a trivia contest. My last day there, I had a whole afternoon free, so I took a bus up to the Haight and went to Amoeba Records. Wow, that place is pretty impressive! It's beyond huge. I walked out with only 4 CDs -- I exercised restraint. The bus ride there was also fun and interesting. Public transportation is usually a great way to see a city. I've never used the SF Muni before -- only cable cars -- and this time worked out pretty well. SF is really a beautiful city. If I *had* to have a west coast perch, I think I'd opt for SF. Assuming that, you know, money was no option.

It's good to be home, though. I missed Liz and Jane a lot. We had tried to work it so they'd come with me, but in the end we decided it would be more trouble than it was worth.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Carbon/Silicon @ 9:30, April 6

Boy, this show was a real surprise. We went in with pretty low expectations, and they were well exceeded. Carbon/Silicon is the new-ish band with Mick Jones (The Clash) and Tony James (Generation X). I had downloaded a bunch of their songs a while ago, and to be honest I didn't really listen to many of them since I wasn't too into the ones I did listen to. But "The News" has been getting some airplay on 94.7, and it's a pretty darn catchy song, so I thought maybe the show might be okay.

It didn't take long for my expectations to be bounced out the door. Mick Jones is a real kick to see live. He's so loose and easy-going -- really refreshing. He was joking and smiling and exchanging looks w/ the band. It was clear he was enjoying himself. The songs were fairly simple/straight-forward: simple riffs and solid rock beats. I think that might've been what turned me off to the songs I downloaded... maybe a bit light, a bit repetitive. But wow, when I heard 'em played live with some oomph behind them, it was great! So, now I've seen all members of The Clash, except for Topper, at the 9:30, but not as The Clash. :-)

The crowd was definitely into the show and was a mix but mostly older folks (like me). It's also a real pleasure to see a show at 9:30 that isn't sold out! You can actually move around... What else can I say except what a great show for a Sunday night! Thanks, Mick!

Sunday, March 30, 2008

The Pogues @ 9:30 club, March 10

A lot of this blog seems to be me catching up and posting about things that have happened in the past. This post is in that category. Way back on March 10, we went to go see the reunited Pogues at the 930 club. This was the second of two sold out shows. We had seen the Pogues on their first reunion tour, about a year earlier, and it was great, amazing, all I expected. This time around was just as good, but not as much as an event.

We got there and of course, the place was packed. Interestingly, the Hives show (which we had gone to two nights before) was also sold out, but not nearly as packed. My friend Scott had gone to the first night show the night before, and so we had the advantage of being able to compare the two shows. Our crowd was way less drunk and also less boisterous. Which was fine by me, honestly. I would've liked it if our crowd was more boisterous, but if that meant being really smashed too, then I'll take what we got. There were of course many people who were clearly way too drunk but fortunately they didn't infringe on my good time. Also, according to Scott, Shane MacGowan was in better form (it's all relative!) on our night.

In general, this show compared w/ the last (and first) reunion, was not as good. But how could it be. When we saw 'em the first time there was just a lot more excitement b/c we'd never seen 'em before and so there was a lot of build up and anticipation. Plus the show was on a weekend night so there were no worries for the next day. But that's not to say that this time around wasn't good -- it was great! It's just the shine came off it a bit.

Anyway, the set list was great w/ the usual "greatest hits", although there was no "Fairytale of New York". Shane did sound good (like I said, it's all relative) and the band was tight as usual. I ran into a couple of people at the show. One was a girl named Jennifer who sorta recognized me as someone familiar and I did the same w/ her. Turns out we went to high school together, travelled in similar circles, but were not friends then. She was friendly, and we talked for a bit during the Pogues. She is now married to the drummer for Black Market Baby. I also ran into Joe Englert and chatted with him for a few minutes. Super nice guy. I can usually count on seeing some familiar faces at shows like these, and this night was no exception.

Jane at 11 months

Hard to believe that in a few weeks Jane will be a year old! I know it's been a while since I've posted any new pictures, so this slideshow is 3 months worth. She has become pretty proficient at crawling although she is a not a long distance crawler... her specialty is more like very short bursts of crawling. She loves standing up (with helping hands from a grown up) and will go up and down for hours. OK, minutes is more accurate but the point is she loves it. She's eating real food now and is doing very well in that department. But she has no teeth yet! Something to look forward to. She's been doing the sort of babbling thing and making vowel sounds. And as you can see, she's still working on the hair, but it's starting to get a bit thicker. All in all she's really doing well. Enjoy the pictures!

View the slideshow

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Wire has checked out

OK, so this post is more than a week late... I'm catching up a bit. The finale of the Wire was a week ago, and it was a sad day for TV (if I can say so). The Wire was by far my favorite show on TV in the last maybe 3 or 4 seasons. OK, maybe not my only favorite -- the Sopranos, of course, was also great until it ended.

The finale was pretty good, and this season was decent, but last season was by far the best. I didn't always catch every line of dialogue, or keep up with all the characters' names, or understand every plot nuance. But to me, it was a very well done, affecting, and entertaining show that (I'm guessing) comes as close as possible for a TV show to depict what is happening in our cities' institutions. Yeah, the newspaper storyline could've been better this season, but Jimmy's wake in the final season was great, I thought. So many great characters: Jimmy, Bunk, Omar, Lester, Bunny Colvin, and the kids from season 4.

When we lived in Columbia Heights, I would usually watch The Wire on Sunday nights and then go walk the dog in our 'hood. And I gotta say that watching the Wire put a new spin on living in a place like CH. For one thing, it made me more paranoid about crime directly after watching each Sunday night -- everyone on the street while I was walking the dog was up to no good! But more generally, it really made me look at the things that I was seeing in CH streets in a different way. Seeing the people on the streets and knowing that they had stories behind them, some positive, some negative. Right now I'm writing at a superficial level, but the show really did affect me in the way I looked at my 'hood.

I was in Baltimore a few years back for a work retreat and we took a tour of some of the worse-off neighborhoods in Baltimore. Drove through streets of boarded up houses and I thought "wow, that really looks like something out of The Wire." And then we turned a corner and saw a bunch of HBO trucks set up for filming.

So now that The Wire's gone and The Sopranos is done, I might have to cancel my HBO... I like Big Love and Entourage well enough, but that might not be enough to keep us subscribed. Although Flight of the Conchords is pretty good... hmmmm.

Some Silver Spring news

Here are a few pieces of info I've "repurposed" from other Silver Spring blogs.

- From Silver Spring, Singular, the City Paper Crafty Bastard fair will have an event in Silver Spring this summer.

- And from Silver Spring Scene, some info on the upcoming Hook and Ladder brewpub in downtown SS.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Hives & Donnas @ 930 Club

Last weekend was a busy show-weekend. On Sat, we went to go see the Hives and the Donnas. (On Mon we went to go see the Pogues -- more on that later.) I was looking forward to it for a few reasons. One, the last time we saw the Hives, they were great -- funny, tight, energetic, and rockin'. Two, I haven't seen the Donnas in a few years and was looking forward to seeing them again since I like their older stuff a lot.

The Donnas have a new album out (Bitchin'), and the word on the street is that it ain't too good. (I don't have it.) This is not too surprising since their last album, Gold Medal, was a bit of a clunker. So this all solidifies a downward spiral since Spend the Night. But even so, they have been a source of fun rock n roll for me and my friends for several years, so a chance to see them is an anticipated event. What a disappointment. The set consisted of nothing older than anything off of Spend the Night. The new songs did not sound all that appealing. Plus, the singer has developed some stage banter consisting of things like "yay-aa!" and she really wasn't singing too well. I think in the past, we'd give 'em a pass on some aspects of the musicianship since they had great funny/catchy/rockin' tunes. The guitar player however sounded great like she always does. I was disappointed not to hear at least something from the older records...

The Hives were, in contrast, great. Second time I've seen 'em. The singer, Pelle, definitely has watched a few Rolling Stones films because in the same way that Mick Jagger used moves by Tina Turner, Pelle uses Mick's moves. But beyond that, the music was tight and it would be hard to imagine a less energetic performance. To be honest, my opinion of the latest album was pretty low the first time I listened to it. But it grew on me. And seeing the new songs done live, I thought they were great. They played a varied set, with songs going back to Veni Vidi Vicious (a great version of Hate to Say I Told You So). The crowd was very into the show, which for me always makes things more exciting. I really think it's a drag to go see a show -- no matter what type of music -- and not see the crowd make any indication that they're enjoying themselves. To me, that's what the live show is all about: feeding off the band, and the band feeding off of you. I know, it's a cliche, but that's how I feel. Anyway, enough of the rant... great Hives show and a fun Saturday night.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Ladies and gentlemen, we now have crawling!

Jane has reached a milestone -- she has started to crawl! It is a tentative, sort-of shuffling crawl, but a full-on crawl nonetheless. Legs and arms move together, for the most part, and she can go about a foot or two. It was amazing when I watched her do it. Amazing to watch her figure it out. We, of course, had to put the proverbial carrot out in front of her (in this case a book) to motivate her, but it worked! I have some video of her doing it for the first time. And that's the first time that I saw, anyway. Our daycare provider tells us that she has not seen Jane crawl before, so I'm gonna assume that I saw it first. I'd like to put the video online, but I've got a feeling that may never happen. Maybe some pics!

Friday, February 29, 2008

Moz Angeles

Here's a sort of random music culture posting... Over the holidays, a guy I know was in town from Southern California. While we were talking, he was telling me that he and his wife went to go see Morrissey in LA. So, while he's telling me about this show, I learn that Morrissey has a pretty large and passionate Latino fan base in LA. Who knew?! I didn't think about it again until I ran across a write up of a documentary about these fans.

The whole thing seems counter intuitive. I did like some Smiths stuff, but I'm not a fan of Morrissey, so this is not anything earth shaking for me. But I did think it was slightly strange and interesting anyway. Not to make too much of a big deal out of it, but this is one of those cases where truth is stranger than fiction. Is it really a multi-culti world, after all?

This essay argues that there is a logic to the whole "phenomenon" (for lack of a better word).

And apparently, there have been a few documentaries about this.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

No Depression: no more magazine

Heard this on NPR over the weekend... No Depression will cease publication as a magazine and become online only.

The story from NPR

Sunday, February 17, 2008

New Pornographers: Use It

This is a great video!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Northern Illinois University

Just wanted to say we are very sad about what's happened at NIU -- it's a terrible thing. But we are happy that our friends there are safe and were not harmed. These things happen far, far too often.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

The Wire: Senator Clay Davis

This doesn't really have anything to do w/ anything, except I think it's awesome. If you don't watch the Wire on HBO (the best show on TV), here's what you're missing. This is Not Safe For Work.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Coen Bros. at the AFI

OK, the actual Coen Brothers will not be at the AFI in Silver Spring, as far as I know, but the theater is putting on a retrospective of many (all?) of their best movies. 'Course I'll probably never go to any of the showings since I never go to movie theaters. I think the last movie I saw in a theater was ... um ... maybe Lady in the Water? If that's right, that was in 2006.

Anyway, here's the info about the Coen Bros. retrospective.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Video from Government (Re) Issue show

Just came across this video on youtube from the GI benefit show for John Stabb at the Rock and Roll Hotel. Here's hoping more gets posted/released.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Vintage WHFS recordings

My buddy Joe tipped me off about some blogs that have posted vintage recordings of radio shows on WHFS from the '80s and '90s. I haven't yet checked them out, but some look pretty promising -- some for nostalgia sakes and some for the music. I believe (not that it's all that earth-shattering) that DC was able to build and sustain the scene it had in large part due to 'HFS. Without that easy way to access much of the music that was under the radar at the time, it would have been much harder to get the word out. Most people I know from the area who were hip to non-mainstream music in the '70s and '80s were so because of 'HFS.

Here are the links:

WHFS and other great music -- various shows from 'HFS and other stations from mostly late '80s.

Camarillo Brillo -- Weasel show from '83

Some new music-related sites

In the last few months I've learned about some new (to me, anyway) music related sites. Check 'em out:

Jango -- search engine for music

Seeqpod -- search engine for music

Slacker -- internet radio a la pandora

Songza -- search engine for music

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Welcome to 2008

2007 is dead, long live 2008! Well, maybe it should just live for a year... 2007 has been an exciting and eventful year for us. Of course, first and foremost, Jane was born in May, so that was the most exciting thing that's happened to us this year. We've now been in our new house for a year, and we really like it. And there was also some excitement (and anxiety) for me job-wise with our re-org and then my resulting promotion.

We had a fun, but busy, Christmas and New Year's. Jane enjoyed her first Christmas although we're sure she was not aware of what was really happening. She did really like playing w/ the wrapping paper (ie, grabbing it, crumpling it, and stuffing it in her mouth). And she looked very cute in her Christmas dress. We spent a lot time with family and friends over the holidays, and Jane loved all the action and attention.

Looking forward to 2008, we have 2 weddings we'll probably be traveling for, and my sister is graduating from college, so we'll be heading out of town for that too. And Jane will be turning 1yr old this year too. Otherwise, I don't need a crystal ball to know that we'll have plenty of stuff to keep us busy and happy.

Jane at 8 months

It's hard to believe that Jane is already 8 months old. It's amazing to watch her learn and develop. She's able to sit on her own (when we put her in a sitting position), she's been very grabby in the last few weeks, and we think she is teething because of her prodigious amount of drool. And she is (slowly) growing more hair! She is really a lot of fun these days.

Click here for the slideshow.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

What to do during a writer's strike

This is definitely true at our house as we tear through (and get current) on Battlestar Galactica.

A Lucky Strike For Netflix?