Obama - Tim Kaine?

So there's been a lot of rumors about Obama picking Virginia governor Tim Kaine as his running mate. I'm not so enthusiastic about it. Kaine's a good guy and he's from the South, a swing state, etc, but I'm not blown away. He's not that well known of a guy nationally, he's also pretty young, doesn't have foreign policy experience, and just not super inspirational. I'm not sure who would be better - Bill Richardson? Lots of foreign policy experience there. Some governor? Good question. Whoever it is, I hope it's not Hillary. That would be a great example of shooting one's self in the foot. Or one's party.


so, wow. Just wow.

Found this via Famous DC. I wonder if it's going to be a conspiracy type movie, or a more factual one. Either way, I'm there.


Olympics on the BBC

so this is kind of awesome. It's a BBC ad for the Olympics, which somehow involved Damon Albarn of Blur and/or Gorillaz. I am kind of anti-China, but this is cool.



so today I was called by a political campaign, and they asked me to donate. I'd already donated, so I said not now. The girl said, well how about in a month or so? I said sure, and she got my info and said she'd send out a packet then. I said great.

Then five hours later, I got another call from a smarmy sounding guy who said he was doing "quality control" (didn't say for whom) and wanted to confirm my address and that I had said yes to donating. It seemed odd and sketched me out. I asked if he was working for the campaign, and he said "we're doing work for them" or "working with them" or something. It was weird. Maybe I'm easily sketched out (and it was from the same phone number, when I checked back) but why do that? I mean, is there a rash of campaign staffers putting down fake donations? Seems odd to me. I thought maybe it was some kind of weird push-polling or opposition research or something. Probably not the best impression to give if you're trying to get money. Yikes.


The Duke Spirit - Neptune

so this is one of the many free CDs that have been stacking up lately, and I picked it because I've heard of them somewhere and they have a good band name and album cover. It's not exactly a science.

Neptune starts out with solid, straight-ahead guitar rock - the band's singer, Leila Moss, has a big voice and an accent, immediately making me think of The Sounds. However, The Duke Spirit's music isn't dancey and angular like The Sounds, it's got a bigger, more fleshed out sound, and is a little bluesy. The band is English, but Moss's accent is hard to place, sounding almost Scandinavian at times - maybe that's just her gravelly (and appealing) cords and the production, which gives her voice a bit of a warm, 60s feel.

The songs are unique enough to not remind of anything in particular, and they're solid and interesting, with a bit of sinister atmosphere - "Dog Roses" sounds like it could be the soundtrack for a firing squad scene in some black and white movie. The songs whip by at about 3 minutes each, with guitar fuzz and additions like horns and the occasional glockenspiel. "The Ship Was Built to Last" has a bit of a noisy, angry Giant Drag thing going on and later songs like "Lassoo" and "Neptune's Call" remind me a bit of late 90s groups like Lush.

There really isn't a weak track, and while none stick out as singles (maybe "My Sunken Treasure"), it's a very good record. Each time I hear it I pick out a new favorite song, and I have a feeling I'll be listening to it a lot from now on - there's a lot of variety here.

The band's on tour now, but there's no DC show, although they'll be on Leno tomorrow (7/22). Neptune is out now on Shangri-La/Alternative Distribution. Here's their Myspace.


Bird terms

so this is why Wikipedia is amazing. Don't worry, it's a birding term.

And after reading the article, I thought it might be bogus, so I Googled "jizz birding." It really is a real term, and reading about it is hilarious. Highly recommended.


Silicon Valley

so I'm in Mountain View, California right now for a Google Earth conference tomorrow. It's kind of a weird place.

We flew through Phoenix, which is odd - it's all rugged desert mountains and scrub with no houses or buildings to be seen for hours, dried riverbeds and such, then all of a sudden there's a line and suburbia starts. Nothing, then burbs. No transition. And the yards are all brown sand, also odd.

Then San Jose. The airport is a complete dump. I was expecting Silicon Valley, high tech, modern. But nope, it's puke green from the 70s, small and crowded. I'll let you know how Google is tomorrow.

Also, this is my 900th post! Zoinks.


Man Like Me - "Donut"

so this is an amusing little video. It's Man Like Me, an English rap group. Just goes to show you don't need high technology to make a good video - those shoes with wheels in them will work just fine. Do do do do do.

I've written about their song "Oh My Gosh" before. Here's their Myspace.


Canada Day

So yesterday was Canada Day. A bunch of my coworkers are Canadian, so we went to the Canadian Embassy for their celebration. It was pretty cool - free (good) hot dogs and burgers, free poutine, which is French fries, gravy, and cheese curds, and free Canadian beer.

Good beer too, they had the usual Molson and Labatt's, but I got Alexander Keith's IPA from Nova Scotia and something called Kokanee, a light lager.

I feel like people should start celebrating Canada Day like they do Cinco de Mayo. You could drink beer, eat poutine, play the Arcade Fire and Broken Social Scene - it'd be a good time.

Something else I noticed at the embassy were the girls. Canadian girls all either looked like sorority girls, or (the majority) were cute and nice and sweet. I didn't see a single grumpy unattractive girl. Maybe I should move to Montreal or Vancouver.