6/30/2005

So I went to see my first Nationals game yesterday, which also turned out to be my first rain delay. It was looking cloudy and grey before the game, but it really started to come down in the second inning. We were protected for awhile in our surprisingly good upper deck seats ($15) by an overhang, but eventually it started to get us wet, so we retreated up the seats into a dry area. The grounds crew was kind of laughable though, we spent most of the rain delay cracking jokes about their effectiveness. They rolled out the tarp too far from the field, so no matter how hard they pulled, it didn't cover the third base line. Then when the rain stopped, they brought out the big push-squeegees and sort of randomly tried to push the water off it-some guys pushed here, some there, until after 15 minutes or so, they organized themselves to all push in a row. Plus it seemed like there were maybe 10 or 15 guys total, which isn't that many for such a large tarp. (the photo is of them removing the tarp). So after some rain themed songs, like "Who'll Stop the Rain" by CCR and, surprising me, "Why Does It Always Rain On Me?" by Travis, the rain stopped. The weird thing was that Nats pitcher John Patterson had a no hitting going for about 4 hours, as in the first inning and a half and the 2-hour rain delay. The Nats were up 1-0 at this point off a run which we missed. Unfortunately, when the rain delay ended, Patterson came back in, which I thought was unusual, and the Pirates promptly ended the no hitter with a homer on the first pitch. Then a few innings later one of the Pittsburgh relievers walked in a run and tied it up, and at about 11:30 or so, in the 6th inning, (the game started at 7:05) we gave up and went home. I read today the Nats won, 3-2. I had a good time though, the stadium was not bad, and the food was pretty good, especially the italian sausage with peppers and onions and the kettle corn. The beer was $5 for a medium sized plastic cup, but I guess that's too be expected. And no Clipper City or other tasty microbrews like at Camden Yards. But hey, those are $7 or $8 at the MCI Center, so maybe we're better off. And the Metro isn't as far as people complain.

6/28/2005

so somebody sent me this website called rathergood the other day, it's got lots of funny stuff. It has funny animations of cats and monkeys and things playing guitars and singing songs. My favorites are "Gay Bar," to the tune of an Electric 6 song, and "We Like the Moon," which features the weird critters (called sponge monkeys) who were in those bizarrely hilarious Quiznos commercials awhile ago. There's also a post from somebody else's blog here about them.

6/27/2005

Snap, Crackle, Pops


pops
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
so there was a nice little interview in the Examiner with GW forward Pops Mensah-Bonsu (number 21 in this photo). Pops declared for the NBA draft as a junior and there was a lot of rumors on gwhoops.com about whether he signed with an agent or not. If you sign with an agent, you can't withdraw from the draft. But thankfully Pops didn't sign and is now back with the GW team, and consequently, GW is now ranked 11th on a preseason poll. Pretty sweet.

6/24/2005

Rumination station


bouncy
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
so I was going to rant about Karl Rove, who is a jerk, but I have been told that my blog is kind of "irate" recently. "I rate" it highly! Ha ha. So instead, here is a photo of some girls in bikinis bouncing around on those bouncy things, from when we had our kickball league scavenger hunt. (More photos here, including me topless. mostly under "Random Hunt Pics". Not super work safe). And I'm going to ruminate about pills, which I have been thinking about too. A lot of times when I take pills (you know, roofies and stuff), I can't tell if I swallowed it or not, like I don't feel it. So I get worried, maybe it fell out of my mouth or it went down the sink or something, especially when the water is running so I wouldn't hear it. Once I took another pill because I thought I dropped the first one, but I had actually had taken it, so I OD'ed on sinus medicine, which sucks. You get all jittery and can't concentrate and stuff. Nothing bad happened, and I got out of jail pretty quickly, but I was just sort of wonky feeling. So the moral of the story is don't take too many sinus pills, and hot girls in bikinis are cool.

6/23/2005

so the House voted today to approve a Constitutional amendment banning flag burning, which I think is stupid. Burning the flag is a political statement, and the last time I checked, that was allowed under our Constitution. When I read this article about the vote, this quote stuck out at me:
"Ask the men and women who stood on top of the Trade Center," said Rep. Randy (Duke) Cunningham, R-Calif. "Ask them and they will tell you: pass this amendment."


First off, Randy "Duke", I'm glad you speak for all of them. But I'm not sure they'd all want to ban a political protest like this. And then I saw something else in the LA Times: there are a bunch of questions about Randy "Duke" regarding improper ties to defense contractors. Apparently Cunningham sold his house at an inflated value to a defense contractor who was a donor to his campaign. The contractor sold the house 7 months later for a $700,000 loss. Thus, the contractor bought the house for $700,000 more than it was worth. And this happened after that previously little-known contractor happened to start getting lots of government contracts. Cunningham had also been living on the contractor's yacht on the Potomac for months. He seems like a real jerk, even if he was apparently the inspiration for Tom Cruise's character in "Top Gun." He also previously made a joke about a rectal exam he got, saying it was not natural, unless you were Barney Frank (a gay congressman). Hilarious. (Link here) There's a lot more bad stuff about him, including stuff about the Tailhook scandal, on this anti-Cunningham site.
so my friend Braden is teaching english in Japan and he got these sumo top toys, these tops (as in the kind you spin) that look like sumo wrestlers. He started a blog for their tournaments, and it's pretty funn stuff. Check it out.

In other news, the websites for Lookout! Records and Merge Records have lots of MP3s and clips on then from their bands, so I have been perusing them a lot recently. Good stuff. The Merge ones are just streams so you can't download them to your computer, but they have good sound quality. I think my favorites so far are the Lou Barlow one and "I Turn My Camera On" by Spoon, both on Merge.

6/22/2005

so I don't think there's a better possible headline than "Giant popsicle melts, floods NYC park." That's amazing.
so I've been seeing ads on MTV for this new show, the Andy Milonakis Show. It looks amazing. He's this kid who looks maybe 14, and he does ridiculous stuff. The clips on the ad have him and Lil Jon eating cereal. Lil Jon is eating it out of his pimp chalice, then he spits the cereal on Andy's head. Another one Andy has a big chicken shaped Pez dispenser that dispenses chicken nuggets. Good times. Here's his site on MTV.com.

6/21/2005

So I'm no blog expert. However, I have been reading them for awhile and have been getting steadily more and more annoyed by so-called famous blogs and their mannerisms. Below are some things that annoy me. And I have been guilty of some of these, but that doesn't mean they aren't still annoying. (Blog names used as examples, usually.)

- Calling another blogger by the name of their blog. "I hung out with Steve Coolfer, Jim Stereogum, and DJ Nick Catchdubs spun some good stuff." First off, that's not their last name. And I don't care if you hung out with another blogger, or even if you hung out with a non-blogger. Lots of people have blogs, if I mentioned all of my friends with blogs in my blog, I'd probably never stop typing. This might be OK if you are actually trying to advertise the other blogs, but if you're namedropping the famous bloggers you hang out with, I am not impressed.

- Shortening those names even further. Ultragrrl is already an alias, you don't need to make a nickname for an alias. And if you do, maybe your alias is too long.

- Abbreviating people's names. The Wonkette's real name is Ana Marie Cox, not AMC. AMC is a car company from the 70s and a theater chain. Are you in that much of a hurry that you can't type "Cox" or "Ana Marie" instead of AMC?

- And as a corollary, just mentioning the name of another blogger as a link, as if we should know who that person is by name alone (especially as a list):
"Also at the Bloc Party show were Tim, Karen, Lindsay, Sam and Sarah." Zzz.

- Inventing/co-opting words and phrases and then using them incessantly. "stizz," "so best," "evs" (as in "worst evs")

- Ads for your DJ set, or even worse, for other bloggers' DJ sets. If you want to mention that you're DJing somewhere, fine, but a big picture of the ad is annoying. And I couldn't care less if Ultragrrl is DJing somewhere under a clever punny DJ name. (That being said, I have and will continue to go to some bloggers' DJ sets, and Ultragrrl is pretty hot.)

- General snarky breathlessness. Coming up with new and convoluted ways to say something sucks might be fun, but it gets very old, very fast. And honestly, how many of these new CDs are really that good? Will you still listen to them in three months, when no one talks about them anymore? How do you afford your rock and roll lifestyle?

- Using phrases in other languages in your posts. It's annoying in books, it's still annoying in blogs.

- Celebrating your blog titles and taglines. "Look how clever I am with my pun or obscure song reference!" Then again, there are only so many possible blog names out there, which is why mine is squidpants and not something like andrewsblog.blogspot.com.

- And along those lines, you're not fooling anyone with a self-deprecating blog title. I think every blogger secretly (or not so secretly) wants attention, which is why blogs exist. Don't try and hide it.

- Cutesy title graphics. I want to cut the top of my monitor off so I can't see the banner image on the Wonkette's blog.

- Emotional crap. this doesn't happen very much on the famous blogs, but rants about your emotions bore me to tears.

- Complaining about other groups of people. I guess it's part of the hipster code to complain about suburbanites, bankers, college kids, and so on at the shows you go to, but they're allowed to be there too. Not everyone is as cool as you are. And honestly, complaining about college kids? How asinine is that? I'm sure you, famous blogger, sat in your dorm room studying and chugged beer on your futon for your entire college career, right? Come on. Plus most of these bands you foam over are probably in or just out of college. (example)

- And finally, thank you to those people who don't do those things. To those people that do some of this stuff, it doesn't mean I don't like you. It just means I might skip that entry.

And when it comes down to it, I suppose a lot of these have to do with who these blogs are meant for - do the famous bloggers write their blogs for their friends, or for anybody who happens to stumble across them? I'm sure most of the famous types have tons of readers who have never met them, which I guess is why the personalization annoys me. But they could argue that they write their blogs for a small group of friends, and lots of random people just happen to read them too. Do what you want, but I'm still annoyed.

6/20/2005

so I thought this was a pretty funny article. Saddam told his guards not to bring him Froot Loops. But he does like Doritos. He would make a good roommate for me, because we'd never eat each other's food. I like Froot Loops and not Doritos.

I also heard that Bill Clinton might get a talk show. He should do it with Saddam! I would watch the hell out of that. That would be awesome, two former world leader enemies doing a TV talk show. Saddam could be the wacky sidekick. Or maybe he could lead the band.
so the other day I went up to Baltimore to watch the Orioles play my team, the Rockies. The Rockies are terrible and got clobbered, as I expected. However, a really weird thing happened on the way to the stadium. As we were walking over, I saw a van and thought the driver looked familiar. I looked at the passenger side, and that guy looked familiar too. I then realized it was Head of Femur, the band I saw (and talked with for awhile) at DC9 the other day. It was pretty random, to happen to be on the same street at the same time, 50 miles away from where I last saw them. I wish I had knocked on the window and said "yo, you're Head of Femur," but thought that might weird them out. But as I said before, it was a good show, check them out.

6/18/2005

Head of Femur, Dr. Dog, Architecture in Helsinki at DC9


headoffemur
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
so if my blog sponsored concerts, it would have been the Head of Femur, Dr. Dog, Architecture in Helsinki show I went to the other day at DC9, since these are all fairly obscure bands and I just happened to write about Head of Femur and Architecture in Helsinki a couple times previously. Technically Architecture in Helsinki were in the headliners, but I really went to see Head of Femur, who I saw a few months ago in Philly. They were decent in Philly but were very good this show, very tight musically and played mostly cool stuff. I really liked the new single (I think) "Elliott Gould Is In California Split" which is also available on their website, and they played some stuff I liked from their older album. I wrote a review of earlier).


They also had a guy who looked just like Will Ferrell in the "More Cowbell" sketch, which was pretty hilarious. He had curly hair, a weird shirt and these big sunglasses, which were actually on over another pair of glasses - pretty odd. He played these bongo drums standing up with a cigarette dangling from his mouth. The second photo is him about to bang a gong: (little T Rex reference there). Anyway, I enjoyed most of their set. They had a few slower ones which I was not as impressed with, but it was fun. And it was pretty crowded on stage since there were 8 of them and DC9 is a small place. The keyboard player was actually off the stage to the side.

The second band, Dr. Dog, were also pretty fun. Sort of similar to Head of Femur, they played catchy, pretty fast stuff, but a little more Southern/folksy and slightly jammy. They played at Bonnaroo the other day, so I guess that make sense. They were also really energetic and fun to watch, the guitarist (with the sunglasses and hat in the photo below) jumped all over the place like Angus from AC/DC, and they were just generally good performers. Also an enjoyable set.

Architecture in Helsinki were better than I thought they'd be-I heard them play the other day on WOXY.com and I was not impressed, they sounded very loose and not overly skilled and the whispery guy was annoying (I also complained about that on my review of their first CD). However, they were pretty good this show and the whispery guy didn't get on my nerves, so it ended on a high note. They sounded about the same as their albums, kind of twee stuff, but I sometimes wish they wouldn't stop their songs so much and change them around. But that said, it was a generally solid show and I was happy. There's a photo of them below. I kept getting farther away from the stage as I went for a beer or whatever.

There are bigger versions of these photos on my Flickr page.

6/16/2005

so i saw this on Stereogum, it's Triumph the Insult Comic Dog talking to crazy Michael Jackson fans outside the courthouse. Awesome.

6/15/2005

so one of my roommates is going to be moving out in August, and my room is tiny anyway, which means I've started to look for a place to live. It's kind of funny, the codes in housing ads. For instance, if a place says "NW DC" without any neighborhood, it means it's really far up there in the middle of nowhere. "Near public transportation" means it's far from the Metro but might be within 10 blocks of a bus stop. Otherwise, it would just say "near Metro." And people tend to exaggerate too, like one place I saw that was on Florida and 1st St NW that said "close to Adams Morgan, Dupont Circle, and White House." That's close if you own a helicopter.

6/14/2005

Sloan and the Capitol Years at the Black Cat


sloan
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
So Sloan came back to the Black Cat this week, along with Philly power-pop openers the Capitol Years. As usual, Sloan were loud, solid and fun, and the Capitol Years were good too. In case you don't know much about them, Sloan are four older Canadian dudes, maybe late 30s or early 40s, who play loud power-pop. They're big in their native land but are not very well-known here, which is too bad, because their records are good and they're always fun in concert. Apparently their "Twice Removed," their second CD (they have 8, plus a new greatest hits disc and a live one) was named the best Canadian CD ever by Chart! magazine, which I think is the Canadian equivalent of Rolling Stone, and they also just came out with that greatest hits CD, "A Sides Win." But like I said, they were very good as usual, playing a few songs from their very good new non-greatest hits CD, 2004's "Action Pact," and some other songs that I mostly recognized. They didn't play much from my favorite album, "Navy Blues," but that could have been because it has a lot of keyboards and there wasn't one at this show.

The crowd was smaller than last time, but despite the fewer Canadian flags and "Sloooo-oooooan" chants, (which I tried to start, probably pissing off some girls in front of me,) the crowd was still pretty energetic. The bass player and guitarist split the singing duties like they always do, but you can't really tell their voices apart. My roommate's theory (he also wrote a review, here) is that they must have grown up in the same 'hood, so that's why they sound the same, but I don't know if I buy that. They're all from Halifax, so I guess it's possible. But the bassist, who wears big glasses and is named Chris Murphy, is a really good showman, he makes a lot of funny faces while singing and playing and does high kicks with his bass. The band switches instruments from time to time as well and the songs sound pretty much sound the same no matter who is playing what, which always impresses me.

The Capitol Years were good too, sort of similar, hooky power-pop, and I enjoyed their set. I didn't know anything about them, except thinking they were from Ohio (which wasn't true, they're from Philly), but they wone me over and I went over afterwards and bought a CD. They were funny performers as well, especially when they all started talking to the crowd simultaneously so you couldn't understand anything they were saying. I'd never seen that before and it was pretty clever and funny. They also had their drummer lined up at the front of the stage with the guitarists and bassist, which was neat. The webistes of both bands are below, as well as a picture of the Capitol Years, holding guitars in different directions and generally jumping around.




Sloan
the Capitol Years

Both bands are on Myspace too: Sloan the Capitol Years

so I saw a sign for a bridal shower at work the other day and it got me thinking: why are there bridal showers and baby showers, but no birthday showers, graduation showers, promotion showers, etc? Maybe the word "shower" implies presents, since I guess you get stuff at baby showers and bridal showers, but you get presents at birthdays and graduation parties too. So why not just call them "bridal party" and "baby party"? Or maybe "shower" implies it's just for women, since I've never heard one of my male friends talking about this baby shower they have to go to. And from what I see on TV, I hope I never get invited to any kind of shower anyway. They look boring.

6/13/2005

so in honor of the upcoming Michael Jackson video, I found this description of the old Moonwalker video game for the Sega Genesis. Pretty weird sounding game:

Moonwalker is pretty much based on the Micheal Jackson movie. Mr. Big has kidnapped the children and has nasty things in store for them, like drugging them and making them slaves. It's up to Michael to use his powers and save his little friends.

MJ can jump, throw magical stars and dance to counter his opponents as he looks for the hidden children. Stages come in shape of some of MJ's videos like streets and graveyards. There are also caves and a final showdown in space as a robot.


I wonder if you get to sleep in the same bed with the kids if you win, or get extra points for holding babies off of balconies.

Whoops


correction
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
so I thought this was pretty bizarre and hilarious. It's a correction from the Washington Times. How this happened, I don't know. My guess is it was some sort of inside joke that didn't get caught by the copy editors. The page is here and credit goes to Edmund for finding it.

6/10/2005

so it's almost the weekend. Just so you aren't worried throughout this weekend, apparently Screech is not related to Mike D. Or Neil Diamond either.

And I've been listening to a lot of Kings of Convenience lately from this website, which has lots of live performances under the "Downloads" section. They had a lot of funny stage banter when I saw them, and they're funny in all of the ones I've heard on here, too. I think I'm going to burn the KEXP session with Feist when I get home. It's good stuff.

6/09/2005

so I got bored at work today and decided to post the recipe for pasta sauce in the Daft Punk video "Revolution 909", which I got watched at this site. I had to translate it from French, thanks to what I remember from middle school (which is not much), Google, and a couple random French cooking websites. So here it is.

Daft Punk pasta sauce

You need:
about 8 tomatoes
A whole onion
Some basil leaves
2 or 3 small dried red peppers (not really sure what they are)
A little bit of salt
Possibly a dog mask or a bunch of mummies and guys in skeleton costumes doing the robot

Put tomatoes in boiling water for a few seconds. Take tomatoes out, peel them and chop them. Put them in a bowl, put aside. Chop up a whole onion. Heat a few tablesspoon of olive oil over low flame. Add a couple dried small red peppers. Add the whole chopped onion. Salt it. Add the tomatoes. Add a couple basil leaves. Cook slowly over a low fire for an hour, stirring often. Put it on spaghetti and enjoy. But don't spill it on your shirt or some ravers might notice it and distract you and run away. At least that's what happened in the video.
so I've been watching a lot of soccer recently, specifically the US national team trying to qualify for the World Cup. I really like the World Cup, one of my most fun memories was the last World Cup. I had just graduated from college and was living in a tiny, hot apartment in Dupont. My job wasn't starting for awhile and I had no responsibilities, so I'd get up at 5 am to watch the World Cup on the Spanish channel, sitting around in my boxers and drinking Busch. Good times.

But anyway, I've seen the last couple US games, a friendly against England (friendly meaning not for the standings), which was a close one, but the US lost 2-1, and a great 3-0 win against Costa Rica. I felt like one of the Europeans you see in commercials watching soccer, I was yelling and stuff when the US scored. But it was exciting, and I found that it's fun to watch soccer, there's like a lot of buildup and when there's a goal, it feels great. Like the Spanish "gooooool" announcers. And there can be some spectacular goals, too. The US is doing well and will probably make the World Cup, but unfortunately, there is a summer break, so the next US soccer match isn't until August.
so I saw the new Star Wars movie yesterday, and I enjoyed it. It was a good movie, not just a better movie than the other two new ones, which would be hard not to do, I think. For one thing, the acting seemed better, as Hayden Christensen (Anakin) and Natalie Portman (Padme) were both much less wooden, and there were some genuine emotions, unlike the other two new ones. There were also a lot fewer eye-rolling smirk episodes and much better dialogue - a lot less cliched and hackneyed. My roommate and I (who also wrote about it on his blog) were wondering if this was on purpose, that the previous two movies were merely setting up all the good stuff in this one, or if Lucas has just gotten better at writing. The action scenes were cool and were subtler than the other two: before it sort of seemed like Lucas was saying "look at what we can do with all these special effects," but now they were just enjoyable. The first sequence especially. ((Spoiler alert, sort of)) I also liked how they tied everything into the next movies' stories at the end, both visually and thematically, which was neat. I thought they'd do that anyway, but it was still satisfying to see how they did it. So in short, it was actually a good movie, and a far, far better one than the first two. It makes me wish Lucas would continue and make a fourth, since the new ones seem to be getting better as they went along, as the first was lame, the second was ok, and this one was good. This one also made me want to watch the old movies again. Probably part of Lucas's plan, but hey, it worked.

6/08/2005

so this thing called the Downing Street memo is getting in the news around the US: it's a memo prepared by British intelligence folks for Tony Blair, saying that "the Bush administration was selectively choosing evidence that supported its case for going to war and ignoring anything to the contrary." Obviously, this sounds pretty big, but not many US newspapers have said much about it in the 6 weeks since it came out in the UK and Europe, where it was a huge story. So here's a rundown of the articles I've seen recently.

USA Today's article, via Yahoo, which includes the previous quote

Washington Post's Jefferson Morley's World Opinion Roundup

Dan Froomkin's White House Briefing, also from the Post, with blurbs on other scandals that have come out recently, such as ExxonMobil lobbying the White House to not sign the Kyoto treaty, government officials changing scientific findings about global warming, and more.

Morley's online chat where he complains about the lack of coverage.

An online chat with another Post writer, Michael Fletcher, who really doesn't say much of anything. He sounds defensive at times.

Anyway, it's an interesting story, and I hope it gets some more press around the country.
so here's my new concert list. some good stuff coming up, and some things i'm curious about

SUN JUNE 12- SLOAN, THE CAPITOL YEARS $12 8:30 Black Cat mainstage

THU JUN 16- Architecture in Helsinki(Australia) $7 w/Dr. Dog & Head of Femur DC9

MON JUN 20- JONATHAN RICHMAN featuring Tommy Larkins on the drums $12.00 9:30 Club

WED JUNE 22- SHWA, THE SPINTO BAND, BIKINI CARWASH COMPANY $5 9:00 Black Cat backstage

THU JUN 23- Ted Leo/Pharmacists w/ Radio 4 & Mary Timony $12.00 9:30 Club

SUN JUNE 26- MEDICATIONS (cd release), THE THREADS $5 9:00 Black Cat backstage

THUR JULY 14- DRESSY BESSY $8 9:00 Black Cat backstage

FRI JULY 15- VHS OR BETA, CONTROLLER CONTROLLER $10 9:30 Black Cat mainstage

FRI JUL 15- The Bravery w/ The Dead 60s $15.00 9:30 Club

WED JUL 20- Teenage Fanclub w/ The Rosebuds $25.00 9:30 Club

THU AUG 4- Big Yawn presents: $ Brian Jonestown Massacre DC9
so i could watch this all day.

6/07/2005

so I went to trivia night at the Flying Scotsman bar yesterday. The bar is hard to find, it's down a poorly labeled street that looks like a driveway (2nd St NW) just north of Constitution Ave, sort of tucked in behind the Dept. of Labor. Anyway, they didn't do trivia and hadn't since December. But it was a cool, Cheers type place, where everybody seemed to know each other. And apparently they don't allow Yankees hats, which I appreciate, and the bartender invented a weird blue drink as I was sitting there. It was fun. But as I was walking there I walked past a homeless shelter, and there was a caravan of three guys in wheelchairs going in, one guy had a motorized one and was pulling the others. That was sort of interesting, but then some other dude kept yelling "POWs coming through! Pimps on Wheels!" Which I thought was pretty funny.

In other news, the oldest map to have the name "America" on it is up for auction. Here's the stuff on Christie's website. The Yahoo article also explains why the continent is called "America," because explorer Amerigo Vespucci first argued that the new land was a new continent. I'm glad they didn't call it Vespuccia.
so I mentioned this a little while ago, but Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison introduced a bill repealing the ban on handguns in DC. Obviously this is stupid, as the last thing DC needs is more handguns, and why should a Texan be introducing this at all? So here are some contact numbers for Hutchison and some other Republicans

Sen. Hutchison 202-224-5922
Speaker of the House J. Dennis Hastert (202) 225-2976
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (202) 224-3344

Virginia Republican Senators
Sen. George Allen (202) 224-4024
Sen. John Warner (202) 224-2023

Maryland Democrats who I assume would oppose the repeal:
Sen. Barbara Mikulski (202) 224-4654
Sen. Paul Sarbanes (202) 224-4524

and Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (a Democrat) 202-224-3542

Call them!

6/06/2005

so the Supreme Court just outlawed medical marijuana. That sucks. It helps people, 10 states and DC have already passed laws, and now this. I guess they are just ruling on whether the law allows it as it's written today, but still, it makes it tough for legalization advocates. What sucks is this part:
Under the Constitution, Congress may pass laws regulating a state's economic activity so long as it involves "interstate commerce" that crosses state borders. The California marijuana in question was homegrown, distributed to patients without charge and without crossing state lines.
So it's not interstate commerce! A pretty motley group of Sandra Day O'Connor, William Rehnquist, and Clarence Thomas were in the minority, voting to allow it on states' rights grounds. John Paul Stevens, who wrote the majority opinion banning it, wrote that part of his decision was because of "unscrupulous physicians who overprescribe when it is sufficiently profitable to do so." That's a stupid reason. If that happens, then prosecute those doctors or take away their licenses. No one banned penicillin because doctors overprescribe it. Come on.

Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks, Black Cat


malkmus
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
So I saw Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks on friday night at the Black Cat and here's my review. It was a pretty good show. Malkmus used to be the lead singer in Pavement, one of my favorite bands, and has released three albums since they broke up. The openers, somebody called Paik, were two guys with afros and a girl who made a lot of crunchy bass, basically. They had a decent video projection going, but sort of got tiring. SM&TJ, to use an annoying acronym, were pretty good. I didn't like the first part of the show too much, probably because I was too close to the speakers and the sound really hurt my ear. They also played the less melodic songs at first, so that was doubly bad. But once we moved back a ways I started to enjoy it more. They played the same way as on their albums, which was cool, with lots of noodley licks and weird notes going up and down. The highlights for me were "Do Not Feed the Oyster" and "Baby C'mon" from the new CD, Face the Truth. Malkmus called that song "Gilbert C'mon" and said was for "Zhilbair" Arenas, as in the Wizards point guard, pronounced in French. I was amused, but I didn't hear too much laughter, as I don't think most of the audience got it. I am just super cool. But the second half of the show was enjoyable and they did some interesting jamming. It seemed like the drummer, Moh Moen, and keyboardist Mike Clark were the most into the jams though, Malkmus did not seem really excited about jamming. He didn't seem pissed, just kind of nonchalant about it. But I suppose that's how he is. The bassist, Joanna Bolme, who apparently used to date Elliott Smith, was a little boring, but seemed nice enough. Somebody requested "Peace Frog" by the Doors, and she laughed and said she wished they knew it. They played some more good stuff and did one quick encore of a song I didn't recognize, and then after a bit of a wait, came back on a did a couple more songs. Then Moen and Clark started to play "I Love Rock n' Roll" and Malkmus sort of shrugged and walked off, followed by the bassist. But he did tell Moen to say they liked our style, and then Moen and Clark played "Under Pressure" and that was that. It was a pretty fun show, and while I was a little disappointed he didn't play "The Hook" or any Pavement songs, I was amused.

Below is a photo of Paik, and here's a link to MP3s of "Do Not Feed the Oyster" and "The Hook."

paik

6/05/2005

so i think i'm going to start a new weekend tradition, posting a bunch of links for interesting sites, since I do most of posting at work. So, here is the first installment of the weekend linkend, or whatever it may be called.

Make your own Baby Ruth bars

An electronic belt buckle you can program to say whatever you wantbelt buckle. Awesome. I'd buy it and make it say "Hello" or "Holla"

North America was settled by only about 70 people. Edmund found this first.

6/03/2005

so I'm going to see Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks on Saturday. He was lead singer of Pavement, and I found these tour diaries by one of the Jicks, they're pretty interesting stuff. I like the parts about the 9:30 Club especially, apparently it's really nice in the back, where the bands are. But it's interesting anyway to see what bands do and think about while on the road. It seems like they actually see very little of the towns they're in.
so I've always thought that Shaq was the man, but this proved it: he offered to pay for the funeral for George Mikan, the NBA's first dominant big man. Mikan was a Hall of Famers and also played for the Lakers. He was basically the Shaq of his era, a big, unstoppable dude. I heard on the radio today that he died, that sucks. RIP.

Here's an article about Mikan, and another bio here.
so i think it's intersting how your tastes change as you get older, but you wonder if it was better then, or you just matured. i used to love going to Pizza Hut after soccer games or whatever, and when I have it now it tastes about the same, but it's super greasy. I wonder if you don't notice grease when you are little. It's like we're conditioned to fear grease. Sort of like my parents will have a dessert at a restaurant and say "wow, this is too sweet." I don't think "too sweet" is possible, though maybe I will when I'm older. And I also used to love Little Caesars, but they'd charge for delivery so we'd always drive to pick it up. It was square and used to come in a paper container, with a carboard bottom, and the smell always filled the car on the drive back. But when I have it now, it's really bad, probably the worst delivery pizza. I wonder if I somehow matured, or they just use crappy ingredients now? Because who orders Little Caesars anymore? I think it's because they don't have that little cartoon Caesar man on commercials anymore saying "Pizza Pizza." And they used to make stuffed Little Caesar guys too, and I loved those things.

6/02/2005

so in non-Deep Throat related news, they announced a big concert in Philly (and elsewhere around the world) by the organizer of the first Live Aid. It's called Live 8, and the lineup for Philadelphia isn't that great, but it's free, so I'd still like to go. It's July 2 at the Benjamin Franklin Pkwy (where the Art Museum is). Here's the lineup with my snarky comments.

Will Smith (hosting) - might be fun. Iiiin West Philadelphia, born and raised. I hope he plays "Parents Just Don't Understand"
Dave Matthews Band - I can tolerate him
Bon Jovi - eh
Stevie Wonder - awesome. This one I really want to see
Puff Daddy - I bet he's terrible in concert, but it'll be fun to hear all those hits that I forgot.
Jay-Z - looking forward to it
Maroon 5 - awful, terrible. When they go on, I'll be going to lunch or a bar.
Sarah McLachlan - probably pretty good in concert. also is hot.
Keith Urban - some country guy. more like Keith Suburban and Rural
50 Cent - I bet he plays for 5 minutes
Kaiser Chiefs - The only indie band on here. I hope they're good. Hopefully they add some more indie bands.

Whoever runs the website, www.live8.us, sent out an email that says other "persistent rumors" include the Rolling Stones, Black Eyed Peas, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, George Thorogood & the Destroyers, and Robert Plant, all of which I would like to see, especially the Stones, obviously, and Tom Petty. George Thorogood (and the former Delaware Destroyers) I bet are pretty rad in concert too.
so the Post has a big article by Bob Woodward about how he first met Mark Felt randomly at the White House when Woodward was a young Navy lieutenant. He kept in touch with him throughout the years for career advice and so on, and Felt sort of became his mentor. The part about how Woodward would signal that he wanted to meet with Felt was really interesting. I guess it goes to show that is helps to know people. The Post also has a big section with all the Deep Throat articles.

6/01/2005

Tape baby at 16th and Mt. Pleasant


tapebaby
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
so I saw this on the way to work today, one of the Tape Baby sculptures hanging from the foot of the Bishop Asbury statue at 16th and Mt. Pleasant NW. I looked at the guy's website, and apparently this one is part of a project called Storker, where "If while passsing by one you feel strange sensations in your nipples or fingertips, adopt the infant, breast feed, and give it plenty of pTLC. It will gradually mature to a full size Tape Man or Woman to co-habitate with you and eventually take you to the Glazed Paradise (or possibly oust you from your home)."

So if it's still there when I get back, I'm going to yoink it.
so the Post has some more interesting articles about Deep Throat, including a blog. There's also an article from the Guardian of London about how the Post got scooped, and it's extremely similar to a Post piece by Paul Farhi. I guess the Guardian could be part of the Washington Post wire or something, but it's kind of weird. Both are interesting articles, and Farhi has a little more in his, but it's also more positive towards the Post (obviously).
so Deep Throat went to GW, which is pretty cool. He got his law degree in 1940. And something I had forgotten was that the burglars used a room in the hotel across the street from the Watergate complex as their lookout. That hotel is now a GW dorm called the Hall on Virginia Avenue.