Saturday, February 28, 2015

Cheyenne Saturday Random Ten

Currently in the homestretch of reading Thomas Berger's Little Big Man. It's a very funny book and as good a story of belonging to/being torn between two cultures as I've read. Berger's style in this is very reminiscent of Mark Twain. Of course when it was first published Twain was taken to task for exposing the nation's youth to filth and vulgarity. Imagine what those critics would have thought of this...

1. The Band - To Kingdom Come
2. Elvis Costello & the Attractions - You'll Never Be a Man
3. The Who - Girl's Eyes
4. Broadcast - Corporeal
5. Diana Krall - Pick Yourself Up
6. Metric - Lost Kitten
7. Morphine - All Wrong
8. Sun Ra - Where Is Tomorrow
9. Patsy Cline - She's Got You
10. Roxy Music - In Every Dream Home a Heartache

Friday, February 27, 2015

One to beam up (sorry)

Yes, I know it's been a week since I've done a non-video post. It's getting late and what I thought I might write won't get written tonight.

But hey, here's the great and now late Leonard Nimoy supporting the Bangle cause with his fascinating eyebrows.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Going to the dogs

I Googled "wolves playing chess" because I was curious how our lupine neighbors might handle, say, a Queen's gambit. Alas, I found nothing. Perhaps no animal researchers have taken their training down that road? Then I shortened the search to "wolves playing" and found this. Which I definitely like. It's both bold and beautiful that whoever shot this had the wolves frolicking right in front of his house.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Picture this

I'm not going in with any great familiarity with Sra Iturbide's work, but what I see hear is quite lovely. She does have a gift for making black and white (maybe with a brown tint in places) come alive.

Also I like this clip because Spanish, when you take time to listen to it, is a beautiful language, one that we don't appreciate often.

Friday, February 20, 2015

The hum of the Friday Random Ten

One thing about night, late at night, when it's a little windy outside. You can lie down or even stand and listen, the few cars passing on the street blending in with the wind. It's kind of peaceful.

1. Beck - Blackbird Chain
2. Fleetwood Mac - Same Old Way
3. Ernie K-Doe - A Certain Girl
4. Metric - Clone
5. Rasputina - My Orphanage
6. The Who - Our Love Was
7. Sun Ra - Tapestry from an Asteroid
8. Elvis Costello & the Attractions - Clubland
9. Fitz & the Tantrums - Break the Walls
10. Diana Krall - Devil May Care

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

We'll burn that cross when we come to it

Well I guess the Klan as such doesn't have as much of a presence in the UK, but this has gotta be intentional. Some guy knew he was going to be fired for some other reason - maybe boinking the boss's wife, I don't know - and slipped this promotion into the agenda. It's just too perfect.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Run dwn

Seen here is the announcement from Sunday afternoon that RIPTA was ending service for the day at five. While appearing in what is technically a newspaper it is pretty much pure press release. The reasons for the move are stated - mainly safety of the drivers and passengers - but not interrogated.

Whether or not RIPTA was justified, there seem to be some non-valid assumptions here. Mainly that passengers would be at or near home when the abnormally early stop time came. That they'd know ahead of time the stoppage was coming. So that if on the off chance they were out, they'd be on the available bus back home, and if they were home they'd know to stay in.

In reality passengers were stranded in places it was difficult to get home from in this weather. (Me, I was able to walk home, but it wasn't fun.) People waited at stops for buses that weren't coming in sub zero temperatures. And you can bet they were pissed.

Sunday night and all day Monday I've searched in vain for stories on customer complaints, or anything on public reaction at all. The story is certainly there to be told. But no local - or "local" - media outlets are telling it.

This is the essential problem with media consolidation. Providence is a decent sized market. But our one daily newspaper is owned by a Texan corporation that manifestly doesn't care about original content. The TV stations all belong to out of state conglomerates. The main alternative weekly went under a couple of months ago. And there's no "new media" innovator to take up the slack, certainly none with the requisite following.

How many stories fall into a journalistic dead space as a result?

Sunday, February 15, 2015

3 the hard way

Three robotic monkeys playing along to fizzy Latin American novelty music. I think the brilliance of the Nairobi Trio is how close it comes to being unbearably creepy. It's just those occasional reminders that there are people underneath the masks that make it safe to laugh.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Friday Random Ten by the seat of the pants

Because I have something else going on Sunday morning - which for all I know will end up cancelled - I need to do grocery shopping tomorrow. Which will be mayhem, because we're expecting - wait for it - another blizzard.

Someday we'll look back on this and laugh.

1. Elton John - Come Down In Time
2. Pink Martini - She Was Too Good to Me
3. Dave Van Ronk - Motherless Children
4. Fleetwood Mac - Save Me a Place
5. The Band - Caledonia Mission
6. Aaron Neville - Over You
7. The Who - Tattoo
8. Fitz & the Tantrums - Out of My League
9. Sun Ra - Space Jazz Reverie
10. Imperial Teen - All the Same

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Travel question

When customs officials ask you if you have anything to declare, can you still crack them up by saying "Only my genius"? Or do they hear that one a dozen times a day already?

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

For those who love puppets, guns, donuts

Hard to come up with something to say about this

Janky Donuts from Winston Macdonald on Vimeo.

I didn't make it to Boston to see this up close last year. Still, executing such a perplexing idea gets my respect.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

For better or Norse

Turns out everything old really is new again.
For the first time in 1,000 years a new pagan temple is being constructed in Iceland’s capital city that will house a shrine to the Norse gods Thor, Odin and Frigg.
“We see this as so much part of our heritage,” said Hilmar Orn Hilmarsson, high priest of the Asatru religion.
The temple is ten years in the making and is currently under construction. The 4,000 square foot facility will overlook the Icelandic capital and be completed in 2016. It will give Icelanders the opportunity to publicly worship at the shrine to gods.
Norse paganism is very old, albeit younger than Greco-Roman mythology. But that's what's interesting about phemomena like this. The adherents face a different world from their literal and metaphorical answers, one in which faith and religion have been decentered. Which almost certainly means this religion will be very different in its new emergence from what it used to be. 

Friday, February 6, 2015

Flaky Friday* Random Ten

* Yes, on a Friday for the first time in... some time.

Over the past couple of weeks my workplace has had two snow days when we were closed, plus two late openings. There's a prospect of more snow Sunday going into Monday. I'm not sensing a lot of enthusiasm for another snow day. License to play hooky loses its appeal if it starts to eat into your vacation time.

1. Elton John - Son of Your Father
2. Dave Van Ronk - Lady Gay
3. New Pornographers - Born With a Sound
4. Fleetwood Mac - Walk a Thin Line
5. The Band - We Can Talk
6. Rasputina - Gingerbread Coffin
7. Aaron Neville - Over You
8. Sun Ra - Bassism
9. Fitz & the Tantrums - The End
10. David Bowie - Up the Hill Backwards

Thursday, February 5, 2015

These little piggies

Having your feet go numb when they get wet and cold then having them gradually gain circulation again is an interesting sensation, albeit perhaps not for everyone. Just thought I'd share that.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

The Real Thing

You never know with people,

The beard fits, but otherwise his look, in both the suit and the body language, suggest an overworked home insurance salesman. Not the way I'd picture PKD.

Of course what he's talking about and the deadpan way he addresses it? Yeah, that I would have figured.

Sunday, February 1, 2015


I like this post from a couple of days ago by Charlie Pierce on Jim Webb's sometimes bigfooted attempts to appeal to working class voters. This paragraph especially speaks to me.
Sooner or later, it's up to the voters to decide to stop being stupid about their own self-interest, and to stop falling for scams about how the Poors and Browns are the ones stealing all their money.
One of the frustrating things about politics - I'm not sure if it's specific to this country or just a general fact of life - is that if you want people to stop being stupid and you can objectively prove they have been , you still can't come out and say it. In fact elections in America often come down to who can more strongly affirm the innate wisdom of the voter. And all sorts of adjacent ass-kissing.