Friday, October 29, 2004

Scathing critique of Bush from...Eminem?

So "Mosh", the new song and video from Eminem's next album, has been leaked and is all over the web. The music is dark and churning, the lyrics...well hear/watch it for yourself.

That site also has lots of other interesting video. The "Jesus Action Figure" for instance.


I would be a failure as a farmer. Just the getting-up-with-the-chickens aspect alone would kill me.I have to get up for school at about 8 AM. One would think I would be sensible and go to bed by midnight. One would be wrong.

I am a confirmed nightowl. Even as a child, my mother would find me reading under my blanket with a flashlight after she'd tucked me in. I was quite pleased with myself when I thought of stuffing a towel under the door to prevent light seepage and
therefore betrayal.

So, longstoryshort, I like to stay up late. I really don't even have a choice. Even when I'm tired, around 10 PM I perk back up again. So going to bed at a decent hour doesn't happen much. I tend to get about 6 to 7 hours a night during the week. What this means is that I drink coffee when I get to school, or I stare at the front of the room and fail to recognize the passage of time or comprehend that I will be tested over this material in the near future.

So I pump myself up with caffeine to make it till Friday, when I take a looong disco nap if I'm going out. The weekend sees me getting a decent amount of sleep, if not at night, then at least in naps. Then Sunday rolls around and I'm up at 1:45 AM reading or watching TV.

Once in high school, I stayed up till 4 AM to finish reading the third volume of the Lord of the Rings. Then woke up at 6:30 AM to go to school. For me the equation that morning read:

sleep deprivation + depressing section of the book = self-centered ennui

In first period Biology class, I actually wrote into my notes, "I am unto Frodo as he slogs through the swamps on his way to Mordor." It is now clear what I should have written was, "I am unto pretentiousness as I labor under the weight of self-aggrandizement." Wait, that's pretentious too. Dang. Well, I am tired.

Thursday, October 28, 2004

My article about author Augusten Burroughs

That's a lot of 'aw' sounds.

So here's the article what I wrote.

Not the most engaging headline, but I don't write them. And I apologize for the goofy last line. I can only claim to have been under deadline.

You can read more about Augusten Burroughs, a man who had a very disturbing life for the first 28 odd years and wrote two very funny, very freaky books about it, here.

Monday, October 25, 2004

A certain disconnect

Ever experienced a situation where you see someone you know, but the context is so unexpected that you can't really believe you're seeing that person?

This occurred to me recently while attending the Pixies show in Houston.

Their guitar tech looked just like a high school classmate, but he was never a musician and it's the frickin' Pixies so what are the odds? I let it go.

At the Austin show, I looked again and told my friends that I thought it was him, but the context was so odd. Friend Amy offered that she had once seen her doppelganger and it was profoundly freaky. So much so that the doppelganger practically fled the scene. So maybe Miles' doppelganger tunes Joey's guitars.

After the show, I had to know. So I went to the stage and yelled his name, sure enough he turned around. Weird.

Also weird is this picture from Houston of the gayest thing I've ever seen on the outside of a building.

Mistaken Identity

So I'm sitting in my car at 2:15 AM at the Whataburger drive-in window. Whataburger is the only place to get food in my neighborhood after 11 PM, and they have surprisingly good pancakes. It's literally a minute's walk from my house, but they won't let you walk through the drive-in so I have to spew greenhouse gases to get food. It doesn't keep me up at night like Gabriel, but I do feel a little guilty about my contribution to global warming.

So I'm sitting in my car at 2:15 AM at the Whataburger drive-in window. One of the cooks glances over at me and does a double-take. While I'm paying and getting napkins, he keeps looking over between flipping. I think, "Do I have something on my face?"

Then, driven by who knows what, he comes over, leans out the window and says, "Do you know who you look like?"

My mind races through this internal monologue in, I swear, in three seconds:
Do I know who I look like? Yes, Dennis Miller because people say that all the time and I have friends who nicknamed me thusly and I guess that's okay because he's decent looking and we do both have similar head shapes, dark hair that's wavy when it gets kinda long, blue eyes, and facial hair even though his present politics put him at the opposite end of the spectrum from me. But wait, my haircut and beard don't look like his anymore - Dennis Miller can't be what the cook is thinking.

Cook: "You look like Lou Ferrigno."

Me: "Thanks."

What?! I mean that's awfully nice of him because Lou's a studly guy, especially when he has a beard and isn't wearing a green Tina Turner wig, but I don't look like him.

Cook: "You know? The Hulk?"

Me: "Yeah." Mind still reeling.

Cook: "Anyone ever tell you that?"

Me: "No."

Because Mr. Ferrigno outweighs me by many pounds of muscle (of which I could only achieve maybe 25% if I really tried) and is rather more lantern-jawed than I.

Cook: "Well you do. Lou Ferrigno man."

Me: "Thanks. Have a good night."

On the 15 second ride back to my house, it strikes me, "Was he hitting on me?"

I'm really bad at telling when I'm getting hit on by guys because I always assume they're just being friendly only to realize later, in one case five years later, that they were indeed flirting. Was this one of those times? You tell me. How likely is it that a skinny black guy is hitting on a white, out-of-shape guy through the Whataburger drive-in window at 2:15 AM by using that old chesnut, "You look like Lou Ferrigno?"

Less likely than getting struck by lightning? Than winning the lottery? Than winning the lottery without buying a ticket? Than Ralph Reed befriending Tony Kushner?

Oh, for reference, here's what Lou Ferrigno and Dennis Miller look like:

Mr. Ferrigno, sans beard

With beard (1983), and no that's not my personal signed picture

Dennis Miller

Sunday, October 24, 2004


Last Friday's Conan was a brilliant episode, not so much in conception, but in happenstance. The planned bits were just okay, the funny came from the unexpected. The hilarious Will Arnet (GOB on Arrested Development, a fine show that people really need to start watching) had Conan enthralled and laughing in a way that only Caroline Rhea has in the past. I sensed non-sexual crush.

The final segment was great. Bat expert Rob Mies of Organization for Bat Conservation came out and it turns out Conan's not too fond of bats. Especially ones that go from hanging upside down from his gloved hand to quickly climbing up his arm. This one was transferred to Will and quickly repeated the freakout move. Next Mies brought out a little one wrapped in a towel and Conan was quite taken with it. The audience did not agree with him that it was cute.

Then the giant Malaysian flying fox came out. Conan and Will Arnet were out of their seats and the audience was shreiking. What's wrong with these people? It was adorable. Like this:

Cutest thing was the way that their ears were in constant motion.

The best was saved for last. In time for Halloween, vampire bats. Now they are actually quite small and non-threatening, but they do drink blood so creepy right?

So Mies brings out a little syringe of blood and proceeds to squeeze out drops while the bat laps at it with it's pointy tongue. Incredible. The audience freaked. Great television.

Saturday, October 23, 2004

Ladled over broccoli, it's quite delicious

I spent today listening to selections from my brother-in-law's massive CD collection. It's eclectic, to say the least. All of Boston's albums? Check. The collected works of Phillip Glass? Indeed. The entire series of KGSR Broadcast volumes? Yes. Best of Banarama? Of course.

I had dived into the 80s rock and pop when I was struck by something. How can I so thoroughly delight in the aural melted cheeze that is Rick Astley singing "Never Gonna Give You Up" while finding Spandau Ballet's "True" and the entire Thompson Twins ouvre distasteful? Not only do I hold strong opinions about one versus the other, but I have arguments that I can marshall in a debate should I be challenged.

Here is more weirdness:

-Foreigner sucks, except "Urgent" which actually emotionally affects me.
-Hall & Oates suck, except "Out of Touch" where the Oates singing "time" in the chorus makes me happy.
-The analog keyboard whine solo in Berlin's "The Metro" is one of the best non-natural sounds ever.
-I love Frida's "I Know There's Something Going On" more than most all of the songs she sang in ABBA.

What is wrong with me?

And why when I so loathed them growing up, do I put myself through the exquisite torture that is Journey? It's the same feeling when I tug on the beard hair under my bottom lip. It hurts, but I find myself doing it repeatedly every few months. It's sick, I know, but then "Wheels in the Sky" comes on the radio and I'm helpless to resist. I no longer control my body; lyrics coming unbidden out of my mouth and I grimace along with Steve Perry (though mine certainly is laced with an acute awareness of just how very awful are the lyrics).

This has lead to the inevitable karaoke performances. My favorites:
"Like A Virgin" Madonna (performed as if I was Mike Patton of Faith No More)
"Take Me Home Tonight" Eddie Money
"Rock Lobster" B-52s (I do a excellent psychotic Fred)
and my signature, "One Night in Bangkok" Murray Head.

And now I'm starting to feel the itch.

Friday, October 15, 2004

Blood donation

I keep putting off donating blood again. My excuses
are lame and Gabriel stares up at me every day, making
me feel guilty.

Gabriel is the child with Sickle Cell
Anemia on the “You can donate again!” card I received
in the mail. He is adorable. I am a cad.

I’m sorry Gabriel. I’ll go in this week if my Hep A & B vaccine doesn't make me ineligible.

Oh wait, I really have go in this week. My favored donation place has Halloween-themed t-shirts with bats on them. How sad. A free bat t-shirt motivates me as much as a cute, needy child.

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Eeyore Love

When I was young, my favorite character from the
Winnie the Pooh cartoons was Eeyore. I don’t know why, couldn't speculate.
My mother was concerned. She didn’t think it was
healthy to favor a sad, pessimistic donkey. Attempts
to win me over to Pooh or Tigger failed.

Further worry resulted from my delight in the
seemingly invisible, perpetually lethargic Mr.
Snuffleupagus on Sesame Street. Dave Chapelle has a bit about him being a heroin junkie, he has a point. Over the course of
many months, I sucked all the paint off of my
Fisher-Price Snuffleupagus figure in an odd display of
affection. I guess. I can’t recall the exact

When I came to Austin for college, imagine my surprise
at finding the annual Eeyore’s Birthday Party celebration.
People, many in Halloween-esque costumes, gather in a
neighborhood park to hang out, eat turkey drumsticks,
and generally be weird in that Austin way. While I do
not care for the hippy drum circles and rhythm-less
spin dancing, I like the spirit of the thing.

As I write this, my Eeyore squeezy toy is perched on
the top of my monitor, looking soulful.

Friday, October 08, 2004

'Team America' cuts puppet sex, gets R

Now that makes me sad. It's been years since Meet the Feebles burst the Puritan floodgates on this subject matter. Now we are denied the full spectacle. It's 2004 people, it's about time for the open viewing of puppet sex at the multiplex.

Oh wait. My friend just hipped me (where did that come from? 1976?) to the apparently classic Let My Puppets Come. Umm. I don't think I want to see that. But Team America yes!

Fez-wearing monkeys

I like fez-wearing monkeys. Like this:

Not real monkeys, though. Fez-wearing monkey salt and
pepper shakers?
Yay! Poor, little, fez-wearing
capuchin monkey
begging for tips? Boo.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

Funniest thing all week

Today in my Nutrition class, the professor was lecturing on obesity. He had just mentioned the social implications of obesity, when he posed one of his questions for the class.

Professor: What's the cruelest animal on Earth?


Some Guy: Wolverine?

I died, as did the girl next to me. We were sniggling for minutes. I mean, whatthefuck?! If he was clever enough to pull that off while perfectly impersonating an idiot's voice, my hat is off to him (if I wore a hat, which I don't). I doubt it though.

The professor faltered for a moment but saved him by offering that wolverines were really more irritable than anything before making his point that it was children.

Man I wish I had that on tape. Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful.

Monday, October 04, 2004

The ludicrous made manifest

Today I saw a girl wearing a necktie as a belt. From this we may conclude that:

A. She watched Carson do it on Queer Eye and thought, "Yes, that looks good. I shall start wearing neckties as belts."

B. Carson is stealing poorly thought-out fashion ideas from college girls.

Sunday, October 03, 2004

People who reek of stale cigarette smoke

It's one thing to encounter them immediately after a show at a club, it's quite another for them to sit at an adjacent computer at the library with a tuberculoid-y cough. Nasty.

Fall has come to Austin...

Fall has come to Austin signaled by the cooler weather, shorter days, and a flock of Segways heading North from the Capital on Congress Ave. With vague smiles they pull an occasional doughnut and murmur to each other, these white people with disposable incomes and no concern for practicality.