Monday, September 29, 2008

JT Meets Jazz

Probably well behind the curve with this, but this is by far the slickest track of the last Radio1 Live Lounge disk:

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Proof Positive

While you were sleeping, civilized society ceased to exist. This is evidenced by the following (pay close attention to #1):

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Quality of Life Index, September 24

Getting to be on hand to watch the Sox clinch the playoffs. (+5)

Discovering The Wire. (+3)

Discovering The Wire is over. (-2)

Discovering used DVD sets of The Wire, that cost very little money. (+3)

C-O-F-F-E-E (+5)

Roughly six weeks left until we pick a new president. (even)

The fact that more people watched the season premier of House, than will tune in for the first presidential debate. (-4)

This Week's Total: (+10)
Last Week's Total: (-4)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A Video Quickie

Possibly the funniest scene from Tropic Thunder. Also possibly Tobey Maguire's best work since Spidey 1 - or maybe even The Cider House Rules.

Monday, September 22, 2008

So Late In Getting To It...

Someone turned me on to The Wire, recently. Holy shit. Have I really been missing out on something this good, for so long? Well, no longer. I plowed through Season 1 over this past weekend, and will follow suit with the rest in the coming weeks. Until then - if you're one of the folks that's been watching this all along - no spoilers, please. If not, go buy Season 1 and catch up.

Like an anti-Law & Order, this show hooked me after the first five minutes (thanks in no small part to the theme song). I'll confess to having difficulty taking Dominic West absolutely seriously, especially after Rock Star, but he cleans up in this show.


Friday, September 19, 2008

Friday Music Special, September 19

"Re-Education" - Rise Against
Like Goldfinger, when Goldfinger was still Goldfinger. It doesn't suck, that's all you need to know.

"Love Shy" - Platinum
Makes me want to listen to old Artful Dodger records. That's not a bad thing.

"My Boulder" - The King Blues
Easily my favorite track of the week. So effortlessly catchy that I could probably listen to this once an hour, for the next eight hours - that means it's 'radio friendly', yah? Oh, and the video has muppets, not "The", but some.

"Dexter Theme" - Rolfe Kent
It's grotesque, but not in the way you think that I mean.

"Batcat" - Mogwai
Wow. Lord of The Rings, meets Little Red Riding Hood, meets the costume that Dana Delaney wore in Tombstone when playing the Devil. Mixed with joker gas.

"Johnny B. Goode" - Marty McFly w/The Starlighters
The best version of this song, ever.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

What's On My Nightstand & A Video

Of late - I've found myself rather taken with the following works of 'literature', and thought I'd share.

"American Shaolin", by Matthew Polly
Wherein a young midwesterner ventures to China in search of skills of self, and self-defense. What's most appealing about this book is the vivid portrait painted of a Chinese life, and of the Chinese impression of an American one.

"Downtown Owl", by Chuck Klosterman
Haven't finished it yet - but my gut tells me that Chuck's characters sound an awful lot like Chuck. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

"One Bullet Away", by Nathaniel Fick
This is one of the only military-themed books I've ever picked up. It does not disappoint, and Fick makes even laymen understand what it's like on today's front lines.


And now, as promised, video goodness (thanks to Yanni for the tip):

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Quality of Life Index, September 17

Fall in New England. (+5)

Matt Cassel. (even)

Semi-self-productivity. (+1)

Downtown Owl, Chuck Klosterman's first novel. (+3)

My mattress may be trying to kill me, by stabbing me in the back. Repeatedly. (-3)

Commuting. (-10)

This Week's Total: (-4)
Last Week's Total: (+5)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The Dangerous Lives of Squirrels

The thesis of natural selection is that those fit to survive, do. On this, even most candidates from both the Republican and Democratic tickets agree. But how does this apply to squirrels?

Each day, we see them run over by speeding motorists (often inadvertently). The reason most squirrels get hit by cars is because they are unable to hear that car coming until it's roughly three feet away. Ergo, one could posit that squirrels with better hearing are more apt to survive when crossing the street. If we can agree on that - then by default, as the squirrels with poor hearing are killed off, we should see fewer of the little rodents getting plastered on the motorway.

This is clearly not the case.

Now sure, there's the argument that "humans driving cars" is not a fair component of "natural" selection - though it's also not going to cease being a factor in the lives of squirrels. So my question is this - can the Darwinian theory of natural selection be applied to these circumstances? And if so, get with the program, squirrels. If we cannot apply the theory of natural selection in this scenario, I am left wondering if it really is fact that those fit to survive, do.

I also drive an SUV.

Monday, September 15, 2008

A Moment That Made My Weekend

Here's the thing: you saw this coming. You saw it coming from miles and miles away. You waited patiently for it. And it (shockingly) did not disappoint.

Best. Season. Opener. Ever.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Friday Music Special, September 12

"Dream On" - Christian Falk feat. Robyn
Robyn's in true form, here. Falk's beat is slick enough that you can listen to this in the background of just about any activity. All hail euro-____.

"I Don't Care" - Fall Out Boy
They're almost back to being not total shit. Almost.

"American Dream" - Jakatta
Quite possibly the best use of a soundtrack sample ever. Video is right the fuck on.

"The Racing Rats" - Editors
I have no idea why I like Editors - but I do. There is nothing new going on. There is no sonic revolution the likes of which have ne'er been heard before. But there is music. In my head - catchy as shit - music.

"Away From Here" - The Enemy
I've got a low down dirty feeling that I may have already posted this - but here it is. Probably my favorite track here this week. Give a listen (or another...)

The House Party Dance Off
Snap. You definitely did not see this coming. Thanks to Batch for the reminder.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Go Forward

Aside from my continued vaunting of all things pop, I rarely wax patriotic. On day like today - what many have called my generation's "Kennedy Assassination" (as in, where were you when?) - I'll leave it to John Ney Reiber to sum things up:

"May we never forget the truth that was so clear to us that day:

That we are one.

And may our hearts and hands continue to work together to create an enduring memorial to the victims and the heroes of that day:

A world where hate can find no room to grow."

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Quality of Life Index, September 10

The first cup of coffee on a perfect September morning. (+3)

The odds that it will now begin pouring rain, simply because I typed the previous statement. (even)

Being back to actually enjoying coming to work each day - despite the tasks involved. (+4)

Officially a grad-student again. This time studying something that carries more than just a passing interest. (+5)

Inability to wrangle all ideas flowing through my melon into some semblance of 'possibly achievable'. (even)

Football's back. (+3)

Brady's out. (-2)


American Shaolin, by Matthew Polly. (+2)

My strange and sudden fascination with Vancouver. Someone please set me straight. (even)

Elections, politics, candidates, campaign advertisements, pundits, the 'news', etc... (-5)

This Week's Total: (+5)
Last Week's Total: (-22)

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Friday, September 05, 2008

Friday Music Special, September 5

"Lies" - McFly
What a song. What a video. Prepare to get half rick-rolled, but really - it's totally worth it.

"Me & Armini" - Emiliana Torrini
Think Nelly Furtado, but better - and with a reggae beat to boot. Good, solid chill tune.

"Love's A Real Thing" - Super Eagles
Not Eagles - Super Eagles, and have they got something for you.

"Lonesome Swan" - Glasvegas
Live from an HMV? And still sounding ok? Woo-ya.

"Crosses" - José González
A little bit Elliott Smith, a little bit freaky with the Fear & Loathing-like vid. Still a kick.

Black Flag:
"Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic" - The Police
'nuff said.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Quality of Life Index, September 3

Being right about the RNC. (-3)

Painful searching for a literary agent. (-4)

I don't even know how to search for a literary agent. (-5)

Edith Bowman STILL not back. It's been long enough, already. Return, dammit. (-3)

The tiny plastic cups at the office water cooler. Seriously. I want pint glasses, not Dixies. (-2)

"Class" starts tomorrow. (even)

The new guy at my morning Dunkin Donuts stop, and his inability (or unwillingness) to prepare a well-mixed iced coffee. (-5)

This Week's Total: (-22)
Last Week's Total: (0)

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Isn't this Tuesday? Not the day before?

A burden, lifted. 
Another, crushing.

Such is the first day of Fall Semester at MIT.