Friday, May 28, 2010

Friday Random Ten

Marie -- Steve Earle
Fresh -- DEVO
Rain Dogs -- Tom Waits
Georgie And Her Rival -- Elvis Costello
Army Dub -- Gomez
Scentless Apprentice -- Nirvana
I Turn My Camera On -- Spoon
Heavy Metal -- Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
Grain Of Salt -- John Doe
Let's Get Out Of This Country -- Camera Obscura

Bonus Memorial Day Weekend Cut....

Think I'm In Love -- Beck

Thursday, May 27, 2010


Steven Pearlstein in yesterday's WaPo. Truer words, for sure.

My only gripe about his rant is saying that it's all the fault of the Cheney adminstration.

Now, while they certainly put the pedal to the metal on de-regulation, it's really this dude that has his hand on the rudder of influence in this realm for the last, oh, 30 years or so.

Fuck. Grover. Norquist. The most traitorous American ever.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Hey, everybody...'s Weezer!


Here's a clever blog I stumbled upon the other day. Finally, an honest answer to WWJD?


Find a city, find myself a city to live in...

Here are some criteria of what comprises a livable city:

  1. Political and social environment (political stability, crime, law enforcement, etc)

  1. Economic environment (currency exchange regulations, banking services, etc)

  1. Socio-cultural environment (censorship, limitations on personal freedom, etc)

  1. Health and sanitation (medical supplies and services, infectious diseases, sewage, waste disposal, air pollution, etc)

  1. Schools and education (standard and availability of international schools, etc)

  1. Public services and transportation (electricity, water, public transport, traffic congestion, etc)

  1. Recreation (restaurants, theatres, cinemas, sports and leisure, etc)

  1. Consumer goods (availability of food/daily consumption items, cars, etc)

  1. Housing (housing, household appliances, furniture, maintenance services, etc)

  1. Natural environment (climate, record of natural disasters

Here's a list of which cities either met of exceeded these select metrics. Find yours? Yeah, I thought not...


Base jumpin'

Here's a video from the bright young minds at Starbuck's marketing department

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Proto Power Pop Punk

Went to the see The Buzzcocks last night, one of the great bands out of the UK during the flood of groups from the late 70's. The Buzzcocks, in particular, were representative of the Northern sound out of Manchester that led the way for Oasis, Smiths, Stone Roses and Joy Division.

While mildly pathetic to see 55 year old geezers pulling faces in over used-rock-star cliche poses, they were terrific musically. Their Singles Going Steady record was a stand-out must have of everyone I knew at the time and since. Steve Diggle and Pete Shelley were the Lennon & McCartney of 2 minute songs in 4/4 time.

If we regard the triumvirate of great bands of 60's rock as the Beatles, Stones and Who, I've always said the The Kinks were the overlooked "fourth" band. The same could be said of The Buzzcocks as they relate to Sex Pistols, The Damned and The Clash.

Anyway, I always wanted to see them and I did. They played approximately 30 songs in 90 minutes. You do the math. Here's one of my all time faves...

Friday, May 21, 2010

Chick Korea

Hillary is in China this weekend and has some strong words for the North.

Can someone then please explain to me why Rand Paul is the front page story of all of the "news outlets" instead of the escalating situation in Korea?

It's not often you hear rhetoric like, "The North said it was prepared to tear up all agreements with its neighbour.

"From this time on, we will regard the situation as a phase of war and will be responding resolutely to all problems in North-South relations," the Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Fatherland said.

"If the South puppet group comes out with 'response' and 'retaliation' we will respond strongly with ruthless punishment including the total shutdown of North-South ties, abrogation of the North-South agreement on non-aggression and abolition of all North-South co-operation projects."

...just sayin'.

Turning Japanese

Shhhhh, quiet, there's an adult in the room and I think he may have something important to say.

Birthday Song

I found this over at Watertiger's joint. It's the Danish birthday song performed by a flash mob to a very surprised and overwhelmed autobus driver.

It this one doesn't make you smile, you're not paying attention. Sniff.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Friday Random Ten

This one's for Bernie.

You've been gone two years this weekend and it still seems like it isn't at all possible that you're not with us any longer.

A bloody fuckin' shame. You're missed Mr. Zofcin...

Gonna See My Friend -- Pearl Jam
25 Minutes To Go -- Johnny Cash
So Like Candy -- Elvis Costello
Holiday -- JET
Longshot Kick Da Bucket -- The Pioneers
Big Man On Paper -- Graham Parker
Return The Favour -- The Hives
Diplomat's Son -- Vampire Weekend
All On A Misty Morning -- Paul Weller
Start! -- The Jam

White Riot

Perhaps the best Clash song evah. Here's some lyrics to sing along with...

White riot - I wanna riot
White riot - a riot of my own
White riot - I wanna riot
White riot - a riot of my own

Black man gotta lot a problems
But they don't mind throwing a brick
White people go to school
Where they teach you how to be thick

An' everybody's doing
Just what they're told to
An' nobody wants
To go to jail!

White riot - I wanna riot
White riot - a riot of my own
White riot - I wanna riot
White riot - a riot of my own
All the power's in the hands
Of people rich enough to buy it

While we walk the street
Too chicken to even try it

Everybody's doing
Just what they're told to
Nobody wants
To go to jail!

White riot - I wanna riot
White riot - a riot of my own
White riot - I wanna riot
White riot - a riot of my own

Are you taking over
or are you taking orders?
Are you going backwards
Or are you going forwards?

White riot - I wanna riot
White riot - a riot of my own
White riot - I wanna riot
White riot - a riot of my own

McCarthyite redux

Cackling punkinhead, Newt Gingrich, has gone officially over the moon with his fear mongering. He's obviously taking his cues from Glenn Beck and the fictional Senator Johnny Iselin.

What. A. Tool.


John and the lads make some noise in NYC.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Birthday Girl

D'oh! I overlooked the fact that yesterday was Bailey's 13th* birthday.

While I've always joked that she's something of the "auxiliary" dog compared to Jackie boy, she's a great kid and has helped us enormously in the recovery phase of Jack's departure. Plus, she can be quite the comedienne.

Anyway, here she is in all her glory.

Many happy returns to the Micro-bear.

*Update: I was properly corrected by the Blonde that Bailey is only 12 this year and not 13.

Friday, May 14, 2010


I've no words to convey the emotion one feels when watching this footage.

Revised estimates are now 70,00 barrels per day rather than the original guess of 5K. At 42 gallons per barrel, that's roughly just shy of 3 million gallons per day fouling the Gulf of Mexico.

Three. Million. Barrels. A. Day.

Like I said two weeks ago, the Gulf is now lost for the rest of our lifetimes. Forever.

Sorta puts the NBA Finals into perspective, eh?

The agony of defeat

As I've lamented before, nobody is better equipped to complain about their sports franchises than Clevelanders. Our teams break your heart in ways that would kill Boston and Chicago fans.

Even in comparison with actual like sized towns, we kick ass at sucking as well. One needs only reflect on the comparable records of any of the sports teams from Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Buffalo, Detroit and Indianapolis over the past 40 years to get a sense of our inferiority and entire lack of winning legacy in NE Ohio.

And while it may be just a tactical defensive maneuver to protect my feelings, this is why I never get truly emotionally involved.

Sports is the only entertainment option that has this brand of visceral affect on fans. For instance, if you love movies, you're never going to sit and cry because Iron Man 2 wasn't good enough, if the latest Weezer album is not so good, you're not suicidal or if the most recent Dan Brown novel blows, you not going to boo him and ride him out of town. get the point.

All I'm saying, and I know that it's cold comfort, is there are other things in life that have greater value than whether "your team" won or lost. Go take a walk, read a book, listen to some tunes, you'll feel better soon. Cleveland is a tough place to live. We're a chronic reminder of a failed nation, a once great region and a forgotten city. That said, many of us love it here and for the foreseeable future, plan to remain here. Kinda puts me in mind of a great quote a guy gave me one time about living in Seattle.

Seattle is as scenic a place as I've ever been. The problem is that it's only really nice outside during the summer months and it is spectacular. The other 8 months of the year it rains. And rains. And rains. Anyway, this guy said to me, "Living in Seattle is like being married to the most beautiful woman in the world, it's just that she's sick all of the time". Heh.

Lastly, while Cleveland sports may occasionally crush your will to live, we're extraordinary at being fertile ground for talented and special musicians.*

Just sayin'.

*(hat tip to the Rooster)

Friday Random Ten

Here's the ten, I'll get to the Cavs later...

Missed The Boat -- Modest Mouse
Fight The Power -- The Isley Brothers
Cash Cow -- We Are Scientists
Breed -- Steve Earle
Loveless Motel -- Jill Sobule
Easy Skanking -- Bob Marley & The Wailers
Honky Tonkin' -- Townes Van Zandt
Your Head Is On Fire -- Broken Bells
The Way I Walk -- Robert Gordon
Your Algebra -- The Shins

Friday, May 07, 2010

Grabbing and yanking things

Alpha Dog of the Week - George Rekers
The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Colbert Report Full EpisodesPolitical HumorFox News

Seriously, is anyone funnier than Colbert?

Friday Random Ten (Jack the dog memorial edition)

I plum forgot to post a salute to our old pal, Jack the dog, this past Monday, on what would have been his 17th birthday. He's been gone for a little over 8 months and we still miss him and his beautiful smiling face everyday.

Here's to you, boyo...let us rock.

I'm In The Mood For Ska -- Lord Tanamo
King Of Confidence -- Elvis Costello
I Must Be Getting Over You -- Nick Lowe
Say Please -- Monsters Of Folk
Dancing For Money -- Graham Parker
The Faith Healer -- The Sensational Alex Harvey Band
War -- Joan Osborne
Rollers -- Chomsky
Long As I Can See The Light -- Creedence Clearwater Revival
Rip Her To Shreds -- Blondie

Here's a clip from the Old Grey Whistle Test, circa 1973, of the late, great Alex Harvey...

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Cinco De Mayo

Happy Cinco De Mayo to all you fucksticks out there in Arizona, the state we love to hate.

As for me, I'm back from the wars at the Board of Elections and I now begin my Census job in earnest. If I'm not fully considered a tool of the govmint by now, I don't know who is...

Anyway, I know that this Divshare thingy is shaky sometimes and doesn't work so well. One trick I figured out is when the applet is visable on your screen, hit "refresh" (that's F5 for you Windows users) and the Divshare file will be playable.

Regardless, here's Jill Solbule with a timely ditty for today's celebration.

Monday, May 03, 2010

What a mess

I guess it's time to potentially say so long to what was formerly known as the Gulf of Mexico.

This is an environmental catastrophe of epic proportions. All I can say is that I'm glad as fuck we unloaded that joint in Florida when we did.

Say hello to $8.00 a gallon Amurka.

Bill Moyers

Bill Moyers signed off on his final edition of Journal this weekend. He may as well have turned out the lights on Friday night. He was the last journalist left in America.

Sunday, May 02, 2010

How can you run when you know...

It's 40 years come Tuesday. Long time gone.

I was all of one month shy of 11 years old. I remember it pretty well still.

And of course, just like every year, I remind us that Kent State created the germ that became DEVO. If you know anything about me, be sure of that particular affliction. Here's some text from a Jerry interview a couple of years back. Love that guy...

VR: Going back to your early days. You were present at the Kent State shootings in 1970. How did that day affect you?

JC: Whatever I would say, would probably not all touch upon the significance or gravity of the situation at this point of time? It may sound trite or glib. All I can tell you is that it completely and utterly changed my life. I was white hippie boy and than I saw exit wounds from M1 rifles out of the backs of two people I knew. Two of the four people who were killed, Jeffrey Miller and Allison Krause, were my friends. We were all running our asses off from these motherf&*$#ers. It was total utter bullshit. Live ammunition and gasmasks – none of us knew, none of us could have imagined. They shot into a crowd that was running. I sopped being a hippie and I started to develop the idea of devolution. I got real, real pissed off.

VR: Does Neil young’s "Ohio" strike close to your heart?

JC: Of course. It was strange that the first person that we met, as Devo emerged, was Neil Young. He asked us to be in his movie, Human Highway. It was so strange – San Francisco in 1977. Talk about life being karmic, small and cyclical – it’s absolutely true. In fact I just a got a call from a person organizing a 30th Anniversary thing. Noam Chomsky will be there and I may go talk there if I can get away. I still remember it so crystal clear like a dream you will never forget…….. or a nightmare. I still remember every moment. It kind of went in slow motion like a car accident.

VR: You said that the Kent State shooting sort of served as a catalyst for your theory of Devolution, which spawned Devo.

JC: Absolutely. Until then I was a hippie. I thought that the world is essentially good. If people were evil, there was justice and that the law mattered. All of those silly naïve things. I saw the depths of the horrors and lies and the evil. In the paper that evening, the Akron Beacon Journal, said that students were running around armed and that officers had been hurt. So deputy sheriffs went out and deputized citizens. They drove around with shotguns and there was martial law for ten days. 7 PM curfew. It was open season the students. We lived in fear. Helicopters surrounding the city with hourly rotating runs out to the West Side and back downtown. All first amendment rights are suspended at the instance when the governor gives the order. All of the class action suits by the parents of the slain students were all dismissed out of court because once the governor announced martial law, they had no right to assemble.