11/30/2004

Dear Baby Jesus,

Can you please cancel Christmas? We don't deserve it. I'm CCing you on "why"...

ATTACHED MESSAGE:

Guitar great Joe Perry has been creating original “licks” as Aerosmith’s lead guitarist for more than 30 years.  Now, Joe has put down his guitar pick and stepped into the kitchen as he continues to formulate, test and develop his signature line of original “Rock Your World” hot sauces.  Joe’s hot sauces are sure to rock the taste buds of Hard Rock Cafe guests as Hard Rock, provider of authentic experiences that rock, today announced all U.S. Cafes will carry Joe’s Boneyard Brew and Mango Peach Tango hot sauces for a limited time. 
 
During this time, Hard Rock is also adding a new item to the menu, “Joe Perry’s Rock Your World Quesadillas,” created by Hard Rock chefs with Joe’s approval.  The quesadilla consists of a flour tortilla dusted with chili powder and grilled on each side.  Putting the filler in this thriller is Monterey Jack cheese and seasoned chicken or steak tossed with grilled pineapple and Joe’s Mango Peach Tango hot sauce, made with fresh peppers, mangos, peaches, onions, garlic, lime juice and red wine vinegar. The quesadilla is served with a hot tropical fruit salsa, sour cream and guacamole and will be available until the end of January.

 

If you like Slobberbone and live in NYC

Here's the deal. Brent Best of Slobberbone is playing at the Old Office at
the Knitting Factory on Saturday Dec 4. THIS SATURDAY.

With little to no notice (and the Knit doesn't do listings for shows at the
Old Office) we are relying on word of mouth for this one. So. I'd love to
see you all. And I'd love you to spread the word, if you are so inclined.

or visit Undertow

and on an unrelated note...

this is a great blog

11/27/2004

Because you have nothing to do right now

Mean Gene

and I'm just going to start linking to stories about sports fans of all stripes for the rest of my life. let's investigate how the culture has changed or whatever they're telling us now that tickets to everyhing are 75 bucks or more. I'm gonna round up tons of tales from now until January 1st (or actually tomorrow morning)...this one is about the Braves playoff situation.



11/26/2004

NFL PICKS...

Tampa Bay at Carolina -- Tampa Bay
Cleveland at Cincinnati --Cincinnati
Tennessee at Houston -- Tennessee
San Diego at Kansas City -- Kansas City
Jacksonville at Minnesota -- Minnesota.
Philadelphia at NY Giants -- Philly.
Washington at Pittsburgh -- Pittsburgh.
New Orleans at Atlanta -- Atlanta.
Baltimore at New England -- Baltimore.
NY Jets at Arizona -- Arizona.
Miami at San Francisco -- San Francisco.
Buffalo at Seattle -- Seattle.
Oakland at Denver -- Denver.
St. Louis at Green Bay -- Green Bay.

11/24/2004

Thursday's Games

Chicago @ Dallas -- Baltimore can't score, and last week they put 30 up on the Cowboys. Indianapolis can't play defense and yet they held the Bears to 3 points until the very end of the game, when the Bears got a TD...(I was only listening to the scores on the radio, so I dunno what happened). It seems like a toss-up. Dallas is a three and a half point favorite currently, and Drew Henson is scheduled to start. This whole game looks ugly. I would say Dallas will win 10-6, or 17-10. Unless the Bears get a defensive touchdown. Probably won't happen. Let's say Dallas.

Indianapolis @ Detroit -- Indianapolis by 34,000.

P.S. Chauncey B has the most fair assessment of the Ron Artest debacle. I agree that the suspension should have been around 30 games, not the whole season. Whoever told Ron that putting out CDs by Allure was a sound financial manuever should be suspended for life.

I also loved seeing Jermaine O'Neal slide and then heave a bunch at that fat turkey who went onto the court looking for a piece of the action. He should have gotten a damn raise for that.

11/18/2004

WEEKLY NFL PICKS

NEW BALTIMORE RAVENS BAND DIARY by LEE EPSTEIN

Though it's a little obvious, the best part of playing in the band may
be our endzone seats, which are perfectly positioned so that just in
case a certain key defensive player [ED REED] intercepts a rather important
late-game pass in the fucking endzone roughly fifteen yards from where
we are sitting, we are primed and ready to jump up and scream and yell
and nearly fall off the bleachers with excitement because this time
we're actually going to get the touchdown and we could really use the
win because it's a Sunday night and the game is on ESPN and damn if we
aren't just getting our shit together a couple weeks too late to have a
Super Bowl kind of season. Case in point: the Browns game a week and a
half ago.

This Sunday afternoon's game is against the Cowboys. We will be
performing "September" followed by "In the Stone." The drill for the
drum line seems remarkably easy. We still screwed it up three times
last night. We're off next weekend, but during the first weekend in
December we will be bringing back the "Time Warp"/"Bat Out of Hell"
show for Ravens v. Bengals. All of our remaining games are in the
afternoon, which means our day starts at 8 AM, but ends sometime just
before sundown.

Quick story about the Browns game: It's Sunday night and post-game
always takes a long time anyway because we have to wait for enough
people to leave that we can actually march back through the parking lot
to Oriole Park, which is where we park the busses and change clothes.
So we get all that done, and it's creeping well past midnight and
closing in on one o'clock. And we've got this new bus driver who keeps
talking at us, which was kind of driving me crazy since I was hoping to
catch a nap before getting in the car to drive home. No luck. We stop
at a traffic light, and a car pulls between us and the curb, hoping to
sneak through before the bus can make the turn. We're talking about
those massive Greyhound-style tour busses. The light turns green, our
guy makes the move to turn, and squeezes the car up against the curb.
Like, it goes up on an angle and is scraped against the side of the bus
and we can't move any further and he can't move at all. It took
somewhere around a half an hour to sort everything out. Our bus driver
claims that the other driver was intoxicated, but we'll never really
know. Either way, both bus and car were nicely scraped up along the
side.

Now, the band's gone through a few changes in the weeks since I last
posted (I also had some of my own personal family-type shit to deal
with, and I apologize for not reporting enough, but you know how it
is). We added a few players to the entire drum line, and lost a couple
to the big move that occurred last week. We are now practicing in the
new Ravens practice complex full time. We left the Howard County
fairgrounds where we'd been practicing for some incredibly long time
(15 years, maybe more). I don't think anybody felt sad or nostalgic
about that. We usually practice outside on a makeshift field that never
resembled much more than a busted-up dirt patch with a little paint
scattered around. We now practice on a replica field, with lines and
the Ravens shield and it pretty much right away solved a lot of our
marching problems. Our lines don't look as crooked or weird as we used
to. The downside is that when we were trying out for the space,
everybody was on their best behavior, so everything worked out well and
the Ravens staff was impressed by our professionalism, and so on. It
only took us two rehearsals to get on probation. The problem: speeding.
People are driving through the security gate too fast. If we screw this
up, there's no other practice space, so I don't know what the band will
do next. Seems like a real shame to have to shut down the marching band
for that.

As for the songs, I'm finally getting the hang of some of them,
especially the key ones that we play during every pre-game show. Yes,
it has taken me this long. For the most part we don't play them except
during games, and so I'm only learning them on the field or during
practice just before the game when we're trying to iron out any
remaining problems in the halftime show. That's no excuse, really,
because I have music, but I am lazy or busy and I'm not sure which is
the lamer reason for not practicing.

Last night I found out that the head of the cymbal section works as a
paralegal. We've also got an X-ray technician. Otherwise, it's like
high school all over again, what with it being our team and we're the
band and, like, 95 percent of us are in high school anyway so it's all
making crude jokes and getting distracted by anything that moves
anywhere. I'm fitting in just fine. There also continues to be some
inter-line canoodling. I'm still trying to convince one cymbal player
that it's okay for him to ask out this other cymbal player. It would be
cute, and I'm not alone in thinking so.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

picks:

Arizona at Carolina-- I have to go with Arizona, oddly enough. I think Jake Delhomme is hurting.

Dallas at Baltimore -- Baltimore, with at least 2 defensive TDs.

Denver at New Orleans -- Denver.

Detroit at Minnesota -- Minnesota.

Indianapolis at Chicago -- Indianapolis.

N.Y. Jets at Cleveland -- NY Jets.

Pittsburgh at Cincinnati -- Pittsburgh.

San Francisco at Tampa Bay -- Tampa Bay.

St. Louis at Buffalo -- Buffalo.

Tennessee at Jacksonville -- Jacksonville.

Miami at Seattle -- Seattle.

San Diego at Oakland -- San Diego.

Atlanta at N.Y. Giants -- Atlanta.

Washington at Philadelphia -- Philadelphia.

Green Bay at Houston -- Green Bay.

New England at Kansas City -- New England.



11/16/2004

Jim Cheney Weighs In on the Giants QB Swap

Tonight I have the pleasure of posting a brief piece by Jim Cheney of the now-defunct NY Sports Express. If you ever read his "Idiot Box" column, you know that he is probably the funniest, most spot-on sportswriter in NYC. If you haven't read his column, check THIS out. It is an archive of every single word they ever printed. Scroll down to "Idiot Box" and start reading.

BIG BLUE WARBLE

Having had some time to ruminate on the New York Football Giants’ latest loss, it is with a fair amount of joy that I say I’m eager to see what Young Eli can do. My main hope is that he does not suffer the same fate as his father. Fresh off naming his sons after Johnny Cash song titles, Archie was cemented into the ground behind an impotent Saints offensive line that essentially blocked the breeze, and not much else. Archie then went on to enjoy the dubious honor of being regarded as the best quarterback never to play for a winner.

While the Big Blue Line has, so far, played well beyond their ability and experience this season, as with many things in New York, or East Rutherford football, it could all collapse at once. Terrible Tom could go back to feasting on drywall in an abandoned house in Dorchester. Tiki could start doing ads for Zegna from the less-than-stylish confines of a full body cast. And Wellington Mara could finally take his place, standing guard over the family crypt in Woodlawn Cemetary. No one wants to see any of this, except maybe watching Coughlin eat a wall. That would be neat.

Godspeed, Eli Manning.

--JIM CHENEY

Paging Brenda Warner

A fanatic would be able to offer you a litany of reasons why NYC football teams routinely collapse right about now. How they destroy good teams and choke to the putzes.

I'm hardly a fanatic about NYC football, so I can't say much, except "vibe-wise" for me, the fact that they both play in New Jersey starts to explain a bit about it. The Hudson River/ State Line provides the sort of physical and psychological barrier that doesn't compell me to invest too much caring on Sunday. That has nothing much to do with W-L, or stinking under pressure, but starting around November, with holidays and bills piling up, people lose patience with the bullshit follies that the Jets and the Giants offer up all season long beginning with training camp. How this time around the job will get done. When they're really just Jersey-dwelling imposters entertaining corporate drones out in the swampland.

I'd like to alert all the folks who chanted "Eli" on draft day that all that emo howling doesn't mean much when your squad falls apart to the Bears and then the goddamn Cardinals this late in the season. (And don't tell me they should put him in. Even his dad doesn't think that is safe for our favorite little honky do-gooder at this juncture). The Giants are in contention for exactly one thing: SUCK CITY, USA. No matter what Gifford says. And the Jets, OY, ugh...

There's millions near me who'd disagree...who trek across el rio via NJ Transit and are willing to wallow in Port Authority on Sunday mornings. Not me. That place is truly the Devil's cloaca on a good day. On the tail end of a weekend, when the skies darken at around 11 am, and you see a bunch of khaki-wearing, canned-beer cuddling, custody dads, shuffling onto public transportation, you begin to understand suicide.

But, anyway, the look on Kurt Warner's face at the end of the Arizona game on Sunday said it all. He was sort of calmly huffing and puffing. He looked frustrated. He looked like a guy who has been reading the New York sports pages too much, and -- worse than losing -- he did not want to board the plane and come back this way.

I say "calmly" because he behaved like he'd been pulled over for speeding. For like, 5 mph over the limit. Sure, he was in the wrong, but the whole deal was the shits. Ticky-Tack. He was mad at his hands, his feet, the clock, his offensive line. He was mad at Steve Serby for loving him and hating him and second guessing him.

Maybe if I listened to sports radio, I'd be more privvy to the dramas that must certainly be unfolding, but I don't so I dunno if Warner's wife has phoned in yet. But the day is coming. And it is not all his fault.

The Jets have lost 3 of their last 4 (they beat Miami), and the Giants have lost 3 of their last 4.

11/15/2004

Joining up

This comes from New York Magazine, via Choire Sicha. It is about who is joining the US military right now and why. It is very short, but it is the most fascinating thing I've read in a little while.

11/11/2004

Uh, Ron? Yeah, the season just started and we were kinda hoping you'd feel like...well, we were thinking you might want to play some hoops?

Artest's Fledgling Rap Career Led to Benching by Pacers
Star Misses Two Games After Asking for Time Off to Accommodate Schedule
By JON KRAWCZYNSKI, AP

INDIANAPOLIS (Nov. 10) -- Indiana Pacers forward Ron Artest said Wednesday that he asked coach Rick Carlisle for time off because of a busy schedule that included promoting a soon-to-be released rap album, which led to his two-game benching.

Artest held a short news conference before Wednesday night's 102-68 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers, and in his usual ambiguous manner, tried to explain why he was benched.

Artest said that he asked Carlisle for as much as a month off to heal his aching body and recover from a particularly busy schedule.

"My body has been aching, I was going to take some time off and I said it the wrong way," Artest said. "Everything that happened wasn't too negative. I kind of surprised the team by wanting to take some games off, just to get back together, maybe stay home for a little bit, rest a little bit and come back."

He certainly surprised Carlisle, who said Tuesday that the situation, "compromised the integrity of the team. It's a private team matter, and I'm going to leave it at that."

"I don't know what that means," Artest said. "They probably expected a little more; expected me to play every game. Everybody's different. It's early in the season, so I feel like I could take some time off early and be ready for the long stretch."

So Carlisle benched Artest for Tuesday night's win over Minnesota and Wednesday night's game with the Clippers. It is not a suspension, and Artest will not lose any salary.

When asked if Artest would return for Friday night's game at Philadelphia as originally planned, Carlisle said, "We'll see. We'll see. It's not something I'm going to talk about right now."

The 24-year-old is scheduled to release his debut rap album later this month and has been spending a lot of time making promotional appearances.

"I've been doing a little bit too much music, just needed the rest," Artest said. "I've still got my album coming out Nov. 23. After the album comes out I'm going to make sure all of my time is focused on winning a championship."

It's the latest in a long line of controversial situations for Artest, ranging from destroying television monitors at Madison Square Garden two years ago to missing the team flight to Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals at Detroit last season.

Carlisle tried to downplay the issue before the game Wednesday night.

"This isn't the Cuban missile crisis. It's not life or death, it's not about national security," Carlisle said. "It's just simply about a group of guys needing to remind ourselves -- all of us -- about the sanctity of team, and what it's about."

The message appears to have landed with Artest.

"It was a good decision," Artest said. "I need the rest. There's a lot of things going on."

When asked if he thought the punishment fit the crime, Artest said, "There was no crime done. I think it helped out. I was tired.

"I was doing a lot. I was running around a lot and doing a whole bunch of stuff and I've also been working out, so I think I wore myself down physically, I wore myself down mentally. I was ready to take some time off, at least like a month off, but two games is enough."

With so many injuries, the last thing the Pacers needed was to lose another player, especially one of their two All-Stars.

The Pacers had just nine players available against the Clippers but Carlisle said he would not play Artest.

"We've spent a lot of time and a lot of money this summer traveling, working guys out, working toward a plan to win this year and that plan was built around team," Carlisle said. "It's important in this early stage that we're steadfast in that understanding."

Press Release of the day

NFL PICKS BELOW, SCROLL DOWN

Bar/None are proud to announce the release of Petra Haden Sings: The Who Sell Out
on February 22.  This is the former That Dog singer/violinist's totally a capella remake of the classic Who album, in its entirey, including the intersticial commercials. Hereunder is the tale of this project's genesis:

 

"a few years ago I had this idea for petra. she has a beautiful voice and when me and d. boon were boys we just loved "the who sell out" (our favorite one by them) record much that I thought it'd be a trip to see how she'd interpret it. I knew she knew very little of the old who so this would be even better cuz she'd then have no pre-dispositions about it. I had this eight-track cassette recorder (a tascam 488) I let her have a put side one of the who record on track eight of one cassette and side two on track eight of another one, gave her the machine and said to her, "just sing along to what they got going there until you fill up the other seven tracks." I knew she could work the machine herself cuz she did really great w/a four track one for her first solo record, "imaginaryland" (win records). it was generous of her to take on such a thing, something alien to her but she seemed to enjoy the challenge of it. me, I was curious as hell to see how such and endeavor would manifest itself - this is the power of music to make ideas come alive, to breathe life in little boy daydream pasts so far removed by time - such a connection for me and d. boon and even more intense since he was killed 'pert-near nineteen years ago in a van crash when his girlfriend fell asleep at the wheel. these memories of us sharing things go through my mind constantly cuz I miss him so - especially when it comes to music cuz he was my whole reason for playing (his ma put me on bass when I was thirteen) that to see this realized would surely be a trip. please understand, it wasn't a demand, just an idea and it was the goodness of petra's heart to take it on. so, slowly but surely, petra built up the tracks for each tune, one at a time. she'd call me and play the results over the phone and I was so thrilled - something so intense on me and d. boon was now being bounced back through this sensitive soul in a whole different light, genuine and natural... it was a mindblow for me! I know d. boon would've tripped too on hearing this, he would've given the hugest of bear hugs for it. we knew that record inside and out (d. boon once said, "you hear 'sunrise' - that's townshend trying to play
jazz) and petra caught that spirit, big time. when she finally finished and played it for me in person - not on the phone - well... wow! much respect to her. my weird idea had been springboarded into a crafted work, I love it... love her."

mike watt
may 28, 2004
san pedro, ca

 

11/10/2004

NFL PICKS

Here is how I spent last Sunday. Woke up in Redondo Beach, at a Ramada Inn that reminded me of staying in a sex-scented, gauzy bungalow tainted by the near overdoses of either this guy

or this guy

Redondo Beach was the site of Vince Neil's car wreck with Razzle from Hanoi Rocks. If you are in LA with a car, you can take this tour...I didn't. I had been at the All Tomorrow's Parties catching the Walkmen, etc.

Anyway, I drove thru Compton over to Anaheim (only takes 90 hours) to go to look at used clothes at a Savers. Remember, LA has no friggin’ football team. Unless you are a Pete Carroll fan. I am not.

As I drove, ESPN’s Sunday radio broadcast kept me updated on the Philly meltdown. I can safely say that Sean Salisbury is insane. And that is the way he likes it. I know that he thinks, “This is how I remain employable.” And then spews the most nonsensical crap ever. Ben Roethndncficfndwvnwufvcberjgei is good, but to start saying he is Dan Marino is lunacy. Every game Salisbury and his cohost flipped to—and they talk about ALL the games—Salisbury would say, “This game is OVER!!!!” after one snap. Daring the world to counter his rock-solid opinions.

Kind of like Dierdorf on Monday Night in his heyday. If you look at America, and why we are so mad, blame it on Dierdorf. He insisted on elbowing his way through every telecast, pretty much implying that no one had any business doing anything. Al Michaels and Gifford would merely have to cover themselves in a Colts afghan and weep into their instant soup. If you listened to more than three of these broadcasts, your blood pressure is irreversibly high.

Imagine Dierdorf’s jaw as he laid flat on his back in some hotel room on early Tuesday mornings. It must have ached, but I bet his brain was still firing—almost automatically—throughout the night. “Did I say enough about Willie Roaf? I didn’t make him sound better than me, did I?” “Does everyone know I have a crush on Troy Aikman? No, they can’t. But if they do, what’s so wrong with that?” “Will there be any good melon at the brunch buffet tomorrow?” “Shall I take these pills? No. I must remain fully alert. I must make notes on Steve Largent. Push forth the Republican agenda.”




Baltimore at N.Y. Jets—The Quincy Carter era begins officially. I say this because he is on my fantasy roster, too. And I need him to scramble, throw, catch, swim, eat, pray, cry and shit out about nine TDs and 476 yards. It will not happen versus the Ravens, but if you watched the Browns vs. Ravens game (as I did from my Long Beach Airport perch, see week one) you know that Jeff Garcia and company got plenty of chances. Why? The Ravens offense, even with Jamal Lewis, is terrible. They will punt to the Jets a lot, so it is up to Quincy and Curtis Martin to move the football. I think they’ll do better than the Browns did, and I think that the Jets will win…even though now, if you look at what I said earlier about the Giants, the mid-season hex has begun for all New York football teams.


Chicago at Tennessee—I also have Craig Krenzel, but I will not start him. I don’t know how much the Bears will be on the field. Their defensive secondary (as witnessed last weekend) sure are proud of themselves aren’t they? Dudes, you are 3-5. Tennessee will win this game.

Detroit at Jacksonville—Jacksonville.

Houston at Indianapolis—Indianapolis.

Kansas City at New Orleans—Kansas City.

Pittsburgh at Cleveland—Pittsburgh.

Seattle at St. Louis—St. Louis.

Tampa Bay at Atlanta—Atlanta.

Cincinnati at Washington—Cincinnati.

Carolina at San Francisco—Carolina.

Minnesota at Green Bay—Green Bay.

N.Y. Giants at Arizona—Arizona. Steve Serby of the NY Post has flip-flopped on Warner and Manning all season long. It was nice, after reading Gifford’s “there’s no stopping the Giants” interview a week or so ago, seeing them get dismantled at home by the Bears. Even blew a 14-0 lead, which of course, should have been the death knell for the Bears.

Buffalo at New England—Buffalo is getting sexier, but not this weekend.

Philadelphia at Dallas—Normally Parcells would stir the pride in his troops to crawl away from the embarrassment of the last couple weeks, but they’re not good enough to pull off that kinda magic. Philly needs to beat someone up after last week’s game.


11/09/2004

Do you agree?

RIVATIZING SOCIAL SECURITY DOESN'T MAKE A LICK OF SENSE

By JOHN CRUDELE FROM TODAY's NY POST...
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 Email  Archives
 Print  ReprintNovember 9, 2004 -- PRIVATIZING Social Security is impossible.

I'll say it again: allowing people to take some of their Social Security contributions and invest that money privately is not possible. End of story.

Wall Street staged a wonderful rally last week partly on this Social Security fantasy and it doesn't want to hear logic.

Politicians don't want to deal with it either because they believe people can be conned into thinking that such a simple plan will actually reform and strengthen Social Security.

It won't. But it could make the entire financial system of this country a lot weaker.

To be honest, I don't even like hearing myself say this. According to my latest statement from Social Security, I have contributed more than $80,000 during my lifetime into the government retirement program, and my employers have kicked in another $60,000 on my behalf.

I'd love to get any part of that money back and be able to invest it myself. I'd even settle for the government's proposal — if you can call the whispers we've been hearing a "proposal" — that would allow us to privately invest some of the future money that we would have been paying into Social Security.

But despite how much I'd like this to happen, it can't be done without causing extreme disruptions to this country's already weakened financial system.

Here's why: It will probably come as a shock to no one that there isn't a big pile of Social Security money sitting somewhere. It isn't in the U.S. Treasury in Washington, nor at the Denver mint, nor hidden among alien spaceships in Roswell, N.M.

Each year when you and I pay up to $5,449 of our hard-earned wages into the Social Security "trust fund" — which even a moron now knows is an oxymoron — that money gets spent by the government.


First, the money goes to pay people who are currently collecting Social Security. These days there's money left over since the demographics of the country haven't shifted yet (but will) to people receiving more annually than is contributed.

The leftover money right now is borrowed by Washington. In place of the cash, the government leaves IOUs in the trust fund.

Taking this Social Security money allows the government to borrow less in the financial markets, where foreigners already contribute heavily to funding our annual budget deficit — which, in case you haven't noticed — has been growing.

Let's not even get into one very important fact: If this plan had been put into place the last time it surfaced four years ago under the Democrats, people would have lost a lot more money when the stock-market bubble busted and would now also be entitled to a lot less from Social Security when they retire.

Privatization didn't make sense then, and it doesn't now.

If people are allowed to put that 20 percent chunk into private accounts, that means the government would have nearly $2,200 less that it can borrow from Social Security for each person who chooses this option. (This assumes we can also use the employer's contribution.)

And, depending on the details, the numbers get worse.

"Putting 10 percent of the payroll tax in private accounts without reducing benefits involves $1 trillion to $2 trillion of transition costs — transition costs being a euphemism for $1 trillion to $2 trillion of added deficits and debts," says Pete Peterson, former U.S. Commerce Secretary, author of "Running on Empty," a book about the Social Security calamity, and co-head of Blackstone Group.

That extra money that'll have to be borrowed by Washington to replace the Social Security loans will cause an inevitable rise in interest rates beyond where they would ordinarily be.

11/04/2004

Complicated Fun

Peter S. Scholtes has all of the First Avenue nightclub news here as well as elaborate Husker Du news and links to even more reviews of the Karl Mueller benefit. A while back, if you dig thru his site (like an issue of MOJO really, catered to the MPLS sect), you will find that he has extensive oral histories of First Ave, and tonz more great stuff.

For Husker Du, see also: THIS SITE

Now can someone tell me whatever became of Paul Osby?

And DFA comp #2 is now available, Read up on the dudes

NFL PICKS BELOW, RUMMAGE AROUND>>>

Unabridged

TOMMYLAND by Tommy Lee and Anthony Bozza (Atria)
SCAR TISSUE by Anthony Kiedis with Larry Sloman (Hyperion)

If you’re looking for an autobiography by a 42 year-old rock drummer who’s spent time in the cooler, has a life coach, punctuates nearly every sentence with “bro,” or “please believe, “and refers to a certain part of the female genitalia as a gummy bear, then “Tommyland,” by Tommy Lee will put you in the right zip code.

Of course your first reaction may be to take a pass, because if you like rock books at all, or anything dealing with Motley Crue, then you know that nothing tops their 2001 tell-all “The Dirt,” a chronicle of ‘80s heavy metal excess so packed with debauchery that all its predecessors—the fishy Led Zep bio “Hammer of the Gods,” included—were immediately reduced to seeming like airline seat-pocket treacle.

Lee, one suspects, knows this, too. If the Crue were once Joe Namath, they’ve slowly graduated from predicting Super Bowl wins to drunkenly hitting on Suzy Kolber. But Lee (and his accountants) also knows he’s got bills to pay, so we get “Tommyland,” with all its bells and whistles, which reads, essentially, like a very long outline/manifesto sent to networks begging for a reality show. In fact, since the book was written, Lee has done just that. He’s currently filming his life as a student at the University of Nebraska for an upcoming show.

But back to the bells and whistles. In covering his life—from his Greek ancestry, tattoos, the Heather Locklear-era (a dalliance on a porno set ended that marriage) to the Jagermeister machine in his home (dude, what happened to rehab?), Lee employs two co-writers: his penis, and sometime Rolling Stone scribe Anthony Bozza. He also fills pages with celeb testimonials and gets his ex-wife and fellow porn-star, the best-selling author Pamela Anderson, to chime in Honeymooners-style with some minor squabbles, as well. However, real dramas, like the Hepatitis C accusations Anderson levied Lee’s way in 2002, are never addressed.

No matter. To enjoy the book you need merely ignore the stolen-from-a-menu-at-a restaurant-that pretends-it-serves-dinosaur-meat fonts, (the art director should be banished to the Dakotas to work on insurance brochures), embrace Lee’s earnest “Beavis & Butthead”-isms, and stave off any jealousy you have about knowing that with the right lawyers, he gets to be 14 years-old forever.

Though Lee never gets as lucid as he did in “The Dirt,” (“I was seen as the puppy dog whose paws were too big and tripped over everything.”) a true indication of what makes him tick is revealed in “Tommyland,” on page one, where his penis makes its first comments. The chapter is subtitled: “State of Mind.”

When Lee writes about the boy who drowned in his pool in 2001, you start to figure out that while trouble doesn’t exactly follow him, the gravity of his bad decisions, mostly made with his heart entirely on his sleeve, often allows it to catch up with him. His penis, for once, has nothing to add to this chapter and that’s really as dark as the book gets. The second scariest revelation is that Lee once had a hottie like Anderson lavishing 300,000 dollar birthday parties on him, now he celebrates with Sammy Haggar. Ouch.

In “Scar Tissue,” Anthony Kiedis mines the same veins, forgive me, as his former band mate Dave Navarro does in his recent ultra-grim tome “Don’t’ Try This at Home,” namely, drugs, Hollywood and sex. And like both Navarro and Lee, Kiedis is an L.A. guy who knew he wanted to rock early on. But while Motley Crue exploded in the 1980s, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, however, spent the decade losing band members to fighting and drugs, while Kiedis’ shirked his front man duties to focus more on obtaining and shooting heroin and cocaine.

At this point, that’s not much of a newsflash, as Kiedis’ lyrics in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s, once he got himself together and the band got very famous, pointed time and again to drugs and his newfound sobriety.

What is truly insane is how, once sober, Kiedis reveals that his new confidant was fellow model-hunter Maverick Records macher Guy Oseary. To me that’s a little like learning Mick Jagger is tight with Jason Binn. (Wait, there’s probably some truth in that.) Sorry.

Actually what’s really nuts, is after a trip to the dentist in 1994, when he’d been sober for over five years, Kiedis found himself popping Percodan and then going back under the bridge again and again for the next six years. So, if you hated 1995’s “One Hot Minute,” Navarro’s only RHCP record, natch—there’s a decent excuse.

Following this, the book’s last 200 pages see Kiedis, while at the height of commercial success, return to his old pattern of ditching girlfriends and sabotaging relationships only to spin out of control in scuzzy motels a la John Holmes in “Wonderland.”

Kiedis, who’s now been sober for a few years, has clearly been humbled. He’s prayed with the Dalai Lama, hiked in Borneo, and now shoots up ozone. He offers great insights—in full-on rehabese— about his own life and ego, but nothing too deep about anyone else except his father (who blew marijuana smoke in his face when he was four) and George Clinton (liked cocaine and fishing).

He tells us Kurt Cobain was great, and that Sofia Coppola (who gets maybe one sentence in the book) was the coolest girlfriend he ever had. But he doesn’t say why, and you wonder how come the women who stood by him when he was a wreck, like Ione Skye, whom he wrote songs about (and who’s topless in one of the book’s photos) aren’t afforded that status.

By the time you’re finished with Scar Tissue, you’re dying for a cigarette, a shot of booze and a shower, and you realize, it’s not so much about the music, or his friends and lovers. It’s about Kiedis and that’s why you’re reading it.

NFL PICKS DOWN BELOW ++++++ BOOKS UPDATES FIRST++++++++

FROM FUTURE TENSE BOOKS

From: Kevin Sampsell
Sent: Wed 11/3/2004 10:54 PM
To: kevin.sampsell@pom
Cc:
Subject: Language & Strategy
Attachments:
View As Web Page

Hello Fellow Americans (& other, perhaps more enlightened,
individuals of the globe): Here's an update from the land of Future
Tense. I realize we're still stinging and dazed from the elections
but perhaps it's a good idea to launch back fully into our creative
lives, no matter how hard the struggle. If we mope around and resign
ourselves to frustration and depression, it'll be like the terro--I
mean, the Republicans won. We can't let them "win". Even if they
already, technically, did.

Now, um, I have no idea how to segue into this, but here goes nothing:

Haiku Inferno (Elizabeth Miller, Frayn Masters, and myself) are set
to perform this Thursday night at the opening festivities for the
very exciting "Enteractive Language Festival", brought to you by the
hard-working folks at 2 Gyrls Quarterly. It all starts at 7pm at The
Heathman Hotel Tea Room (1001 SW Braodway in downtown Portland). It's
a free show and also includes performances by Sarah Dougher, Miss
Murgatroid, Paul Ash, and others. Go to http://www.2gq.org for more
info. There will be prizes as well, including a Future Tense gift
pack!

If you're in the mood for music instead and want to help support
Portland's great Independent Publishing Resource Center
http://www.iprc.org
head over to Nocturnal afterward (1800 East Burnside, 9pm) and check
out a stellar mix of brainy pop and rock with the likes of The Minor
Thirds, The Maybe Happening, Michael Johnson of Reclinerland, and Wow
& Flutter. All proceeds go to the IPRC. I'm a board member at the
IPRC and I'll be there as well as others from the IPRC if you have
questions. Hope to see you.

Book News! Strategies For Modern Living by Charles Ullmann should be
ready before Thanksgiving. We're totally excited about this crazy and
amazing set of writing from another small press up-and-comer. More on
that soon.
Also, I have two, maybe three, of my own releases that are coming out
in early 2005. I will tell you about those soonish as well. And I'll
be doing a short tour!

Hey: Breslin's back! Susannah Breslin, author of You're a Bad Man,
Aren't You? --one of our fastest-selling books--is back on the blog
scene. Check it out:
http://www.invisiblecowgirl.com/

Furthermore,

For a taste of haiku, go to: http://eyeshot.net/sampsellhaiku1.html

For some good ol' Dick Cheney baiting:
http://www.opiummagazine.com/storyallisoncheney.html

To read about my favorite book of the year go to:
http://www.powells.com/cgi-bin/biblio?inkey=1-1582433216-0

For some crazy one-sentence stories: http://www.monkeybicycle.net/

Take care, strong people.

Kevin
FUTURE TENSE BOOKS

Three excellent blogs

NFL PICKS BELOW

But here is this jonnnnnny c.

and gravenhurst

and I love Donald Barthelme

and don't forget to tell Pete Coors and Alan Keyes how sad you are they choked BIG TIME.

NFL PICKS

Agh. I am so scatterbrained that I'd forgotten to keep win-loss tally for much of the season, so last week I discovered this and was doing all the math and got the tally (ugly) and have now misplaced the document for that. Anyway, who told you Pittsburgh would defeat New England? Me. Probably some other people, too.

We are sort of back in our apt following the great fire. The bricks have started to mold a bit, and there is daily any number of fire investigators, insurance grubbers, black cloaked bearded double-dealers who claim to pay rent to someone only they can't remember who, flint-eyed, gimlet-eyed swashbucklers, building supers, rent-a-cops, asskickers, nimwits, dimwits, buggerers, coppers, and fools parading around, as well as a few felons. It is a great clusterfuck, and I can only reveal that all the secrecy and legwork probably means some terrible shit has gone down.

Recent events (pre-fire) have me and the Mrs. Barnaby Jones-ing about the whole thing and we're probably just bored. Let's say no one has cooperated and non-cooperation has been the kindest thing to happen to us. Somewhere at the Holiday Inn on Gold Street there's a maid wearing a YSL blouse my wife won on Ebay and toweling herself with my baby's blanket. Fucking thiefs.

We did spend a few nights in the West Village. Eating Here and here and here....

Here is the fucking football.

The packers win didn't help Kerry.

Arizona at Miami -- Arizona.

Dallas at Cincinnati -- Cincinnati.

Kansas City at Tampa Bay -- Kansas City. (They'll let TB creep in late, though)

N.Y. Jets at Buffalo -- NY JETS (Don't be too confident, Buffalo could upset them)

Oakland at Carolina -- grim. Carolina.

Philadelphia at Pittsburgh -- This is a must-watch game. Pittsburgh. Even though they might be lost dreaming about last week.

Washington at Detroit -- Detroit.

Chicago at N.Y. Giants -- NY Giants. Big weird interview with Frank Gifford in the Post saying he thinks the Giants may go to the Super Bowl.

New Orleans at San Diego -- San Diego.

Seattle at San Francisco -- Seattle needs to win.

Houston at Denver -- Denver.

New England at St. Louis -- New England.

Cleveland at Baltimore -- Baltimore.

Minnesota at Indianapolis -- Indy.

11/02/2004

Questions for Pete Coors

QUESTIONS THAT PETE COORS, REPUBLICAN CANDIDATE FOR SENATE, NEEDS TO ANSWER IMMEDIATELY.

1) A print advertisement for Coors Light uses the word "Bling, " in an effort to help define the brand’s voice. As chairman of Coors and a Republican Senate candidate, can you define what "bling" means and what role it plays in your life, and also, if possible, the correlation between "bling" and a domestic light beer?

2) A Coors television commercial celebrates the phenomenon of "Guys Night Out," an evening where men can feel free to get intoxicated and briefly shirk the mundanities of their day-to-day responsibilities. With the exception of the actions of female Pvt. Lynndie England, would you, as a Republican Senate candidate, say that it's fair to describe much of U.S. foreign policy under the tenure of George W. Bush as "Guys Night Out"?

3) You're opposed to gay marriage, but what if one day a wedding invitation from Mary Cheney, a former Coors employee and daughter of our Vice President Dick Cheney, arrived in your mailbox? Would you attend the ceremony? If so, would you tug gently at Mr. Cheney's suit sleeve at some point during the reception, perhaps near a cheese wheel, or steam table and mouth the phrase, "What the heck?"

4) As chairman of a company that did a lot of NBA Playoff advertising (family-friendly TV, at least in your time zone) you must have been thrilled at the potential for young, impressionable children to witness the male characters in Coors commercials facetiously smirk that they date women for their "brains, really BIG brains."

∑ Do you think it would it be a fun family activity to explain that the fellows in the commercial really meant "breasts"? Of course, I could be wrong, because "brain" is also hip-hop slang for providing oral sex, so maybe that’s why the men in your commercial are so eager to date brainy women. After all, in using the word "bling," Coors appears to have a decent grasp on today's urban jargon.

∑ Do you think that children would find your explanation humorous? Especially if it were your job to tell them, and they were all seated in a giant semi-circle at your feet, and you had really large poster boards complete with graphics?

∑ Would it also be easy to explain why another fellow in the same commercial was delighted to not know the name of a scantily-clad female who was helping him lug a cooler full of what we can assume is your company’s intoxicant to a beach party?

∑ Might you tell the children that sometimes life is just about drinking beer and having anonymous sex without any strings attached?

P.S. I realize this was more than one question, so perhaps my use of bullet points, coupled with an assistant’s yellow highlighter will help you sort them out.

5) Continuing on this theme, you're opposed to abortion, but would that viewpoint, hypothetically, carry over to the female characters in Coors commercials? After all, if the men in Coors commercials are happy to chide these women about their (lack of) smarts, do not care to learn their names, or need "wingmen" (yet another Coors ad theme) to distract the women's less attractive friends so that the men are better able to hook-up with the hotter ones, it is not unrealistic to think that said women might wind up with an unwanted pregnancy due to the amount of alcohol they've consumed, coupled with the aggressive boorishness of the men?
6) In one Coors commercial, the celebrity musician Kid Rock drops off a lucky civilian at the guy’s modest suburban home early in the morning after a night of partying, much to the chagrin of this happy shlub’s long-suffering wife. The woman's role in this commercial is that of a shrill homebody whose "fun-pass" in the world of Coors has been either revoked or never issued. Additionally, women who do get to socialize in Coors commercials are often seen as targets of men's sexual appetites (e.g. the Coors Light Twins), or joyless fun-killers (the ones you need wingmen for, or whose hubbies get to party with rock stars), or ignorant semen receptacles (see the "brains" and "don't even know her name" commercial). Anyway, I know you're against terrorism, but doesn't Coors’ limited view of women seem in line with that of the Muslim extremists who bombed our country on 9/11? Their take on the role of women in society was shaped in the same narrow light, and yet, oddly enough, before they punished the west for our sins, these terrorists had a "guys night out" in Las Vegas.

7) Finally, it’s remarkable that you’re able to remain so steadfast in your interpretation of our Second Amendment in light of the Columbine tragedy pretty much happening in your backyard. While I don’t think many of the students in your area will need a senate victory by you to “teach[ing] our children …the freedom that our forefathers gave us with the Second Amendment,” I was wondering, on a happier note, if Coors had any plans to sponsor or celebrate the passing anniversaries of the Columbine shooting with any special Silver Bullet promotions?

8) Oh, whoops, one more: Did you play any role in getting Coors into the film Smokey & The Bandit? I really loved it.






no voting news, just music, old music

Mick Stevens