03.23.11 – a wednesday

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word

fugacious [fyoo-gey-shuhs] adj. 1. fleeting; transitory: a sensational story with but a fugacious claim on the public’s attention 2. Botany. falling or fading early

birthday

Joan Crawford (1905), David Grisman (1945), Ric Ocasek (1949), Chaka Khan (1953), Kenneth Cole (1954), Moses Malone (1955), Amanda Plummer (1957), Richard Grieco (1965), Yasmeen Ghauri (1971), Keri Russell (1976), Perez Hilton (1978)

standpoint

This wasn’t easy, although I’m sure it’ll seem like it was.

Last night (or earlier tonight, depending on whether we’re talking about your perspective or mine), I was driving from Skippack, where I work, to Manayunk, where I reside. I was in full-on music geek mode and decided that I was going to do something I’ve been thinking about doing for a while now, something I’ve attempted before but never been able to pull the trigger on: My Favorite Music of All-Time.

The main problem with compiling this list has been that it gets too long. So I decided to break it down into categories which I will share with you over the next few days or, truthfully, however long it takes.

I may regret it as the whole damn thing might get a little out of control and beyond the point of any real structure or direction but, as I’ve said in the past, I’m the only one writing this blog and so I’m my own boss. (Despite Joe Taylor’s many late night claims otherwise.)

All right, I’m going to start with the Six Songs I’ve Played the Most in the Past Ten Years According to My Two iPods.

Number Six

“Inner Meet Me” – The Beta Band

Number Five

“Finer Feelings” – Spoon

Number Four

“Ain’t That Enough” – Teenage Fanclub

Number Three

“Modern Mystery” – Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin

Number Two

“Harmonium” – Rogue Wave

Number One

“Beautiful Beat” – Nada Surf

There’s the first installment. Tomorrow will be yet another.

quotation

I apologize to computer chess after calling it stupid when I lost. You’re not stupid, computer chess. I am. ↔ Michael Ian Black

tune

I like Jeb Loy Nichols and I like most versions of “The Tracks Of My Tears.” I found this and didn’t even really listen to it. Just decided to put it up here. Hope you like it.

gallimaufry

You know what Twitter needs? I do. Twilter. Instead of ceasing to follow someone who’s bugging the shit out you, you can employ Twilter, a program that will block retweets, tweets with spam links, etc. and so forth. All you computer programmers out there, feel free to run with it. Just do me a favor. If you become the next internet millionaire from the idea, make sure someone besides Jack Black or Kevin Smith portrays me in the movie they make about you. Deal? Those guys are at least 100 lbs. bigger than me.

→ Dear NFL, if you’re trying to turn the most popular sport in the country into something no one is interesting watching, nice job. These are a first few steps in the right direction.

→ For those of you who are tired of news that matters, read this. It’s nice to see there’s at least a few people out there with their eye on the ball. Christ.

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02.16.10 – A Tuesday

word

gossamer [gosuh-mer] n. 1. a fine, filmy cobweb seen on grass or bushes or floating in the air in calm weather, esp. in autumn 2. a thread or a web of this substance 3. an extremely delicate variety of gauze, used esp. for veils 4. any thin, light fabric 5. something extremely light, flimsy, or delicate 6. a thin, waterproof outer garment, esp. for women

birthday

Henry Adams (1838), Ken Takakura (1931), Otis Blackwell (1932), Sonny Bono (1935), Kim Jong-il (1941), William Katt (1951), Margaux Hemingway (1954), LeVar Burton (1957), Ice-T (1958), John McEnroe (1959)

standpoint

Unless you’ve been wandering around a desert for the past couple of days, you know the 2010 Winter Olympic Games are underway in Vancouver. They only happen every four years and, every four years, I tell myself I’m not interested in watching the Olympics. And, every four years, I find myself watching them anyway. (I’ll go through the same process two years from now, when the 2012 Summer Olympic Games kick off in London.)

As I watch the Winter Games while bartending, I’m having a few thoughts. Thoughts I’ll now share with you.

→ Why is everyone so amped about Curling? Eight years ago, this sport gained a little notoriety, mainly because no one really had any idea what it was. In the past couple of days, at least five people have stated, “I can’t wait for Curling.” I’ve asked each of these people the same question, “Why?” They’ve all responded similarly, “Dude, it’s Curling.” Or, “Come on, how can you not like Curling?” I have to admit I wasn’t exactly sure why I’m not all that into Curling, so I thought about it and decided it’s because of the use of brooms. I just don’t think the brooms do much of anything.

→ How did the Biathlon even come into being? Who was the guy who thought cross-country skiing wasn’t enough of a pain in the ass and decided it would be a great idea to place some ridiculously impossible shooting ranges along the way? Most likely, that guy was not entirely fun to be around.

→ From what I can tell, professional skiing and those idiotic Sunday night blooper shows have one important thing in common: most everyone is tuned in to watch people fall.

→ At least once during every commercial break, the Province of British Columbia promotes itself with a film montage, complete with cameos by Steve Nash, Ryan Reynolds, Michael J. Fox and the guy who played Will on Will and Grace.

→ As I write this, the US has eight (8) medals all ready which is double what any other country has. I’m sure the rest of the world is displeased by that.

That’s all I got for now, but I’m sure more will come to mind.

quotation

Writing is a concentrated form of thinking…a young writer sees that with words he can place himself more clearly into the world. Words on a page, that’s all it takes to help him separate himself from the forces around him, streets and people and pressures and feelings. He learns to think about these things, to ride his own sentences into new perceptions.Don DeLillo

tune

I’ve always like “Half Harvest” by Michael Penn. That’s all I have to say about it.

gallimaufry

Sucks for director Kevin Smith. It’s embarrassing enough when you get ejected from a flight for being too fat. It’s much more so when the whole world knows about it. 

The World Sauna Championships? It’s for real. Further proof there are many more lunatics out there than we first thought.

→ As usual, this year’s lineup for Bonnaroo will be sick. As usual, I probably won’t be there.

04.24.09 – Friday

Word: hoi polloi [hoi puhloi] n. the common people; the masses (often preceded by the)

Birthday: Willem de Kooning (1904), Alan Eagleson (1933), Shirley MacLaine (1934), Barbara Streisand (1942), Eric Bogosian (1953), Mumia Abu-Jamal (1954), Michael O’Keefe (1955), Cedric The Entertainer (1964), Djimon Hounsou (1964), Kelly Clarkson (1982)

Occurence: 1184 BC – Greeks enter Troy using the Trojan Horse. I still can’t comprehend how in the hell this actually worked.

Standpoint: If you’re one of the millions of people going out to eat at a restaurant this weekend, I’ve compiled 5 Things You Can Say Or Do That Will Instantly Make Your Waiter Dislike You.

  1.  Ignore Your Waiter – In case you’ve never noticed, a restaurant can be a pretty busy place. While you are there to enjoy yourself (and rightfully so), your waiter is actually working. One thing you can do right away to earn the love of your waiter is to continue your super-important conversation when he or she walks up to greet your table. Go ahead and finish informing your fellow diners with crucial information like who’s sleeping with who in your neighborhood, or an extremely detailed account of your drive to the restaurant. That stuff can’t wait. Don’t let a silly fact like your waiter having several other tables to tend to get in the way of your self-important ramblings.
  2. Public Displays of Affection – Another way to make sure you stay in the good graces of your waiter is to show him or her how much you love the person you’re with. There’s nothing that makes a waiter happier than watching two complete strangers making out and doing God-knows-what underneath the table with your hands. Also, make sure that you sit on the same side of the booth or table as your partner to announce to everyone in the restaurant, “Hey. The two of us are quite fond of each other.” Waiters love to be reminded that they can’t currently be with the one they love so the next best thing is watching your adorable little grope-fest as he or she attempts to pry your drink order out of you.
  3. Ask Stupid Questions – You know the common sense that you employ almost every minute of your day-to-day life? Leave that at home. Enter the dining experience as if you were just thawed out of ice or your spaceship just landed and you’ve never been to a restaurant. If you’re thirsty you might try posing a question like, “Excuse me, is there any chance I could get a glass of water?” After all, you might’ve never been to this particular restaurant. They might not have running water. It’s best not to assume. Your waiter will appreciate how softly you’re treading around the issue and there’s no real  likelihood of he or she thinking that you are a schmuck for posing a question you already know the answer to.
  4. Stay As Long As You Like – You’re most likely a great person. The relationship that you’ve fostered with your waiter will probably last a lifetime. So when you’ve finished your dessert and downed your last drop of coffee, don’t worry about leaving. Your waiter is hoping that you stay all night. That way he or she won’t have to deal with the inevitable gloominess of saying goodbye and welcoming a new table to where you once sat. The money that waiter would make from serving more people could never equal the mutually rewarding experience the two of you are sharing. You can’t put a price on a lasting friendship.
  5. Don’t Worry About the Tip – Even though waiters make all of their money off of tips left by patrons, don’t be concerned. For example, say your bill is $130. Don’t worry about the traditional 20% tip of $26. Leave whatever you like. Your waiter will probably use the experience to boost his or her resolve and vow to improve service on the next table. One day, he or she will look back and remember you fondly for providing the catalyst that kicked his or her service standards to the next level. And that’s way more important than actual money.

I treated each item like it’s something you should do. Obviously, I’m hoping you picked up on the sarcasm.

Weekend: Each Friday, I’ll provide you with 3 Things To Do In Philly When You’re Dead – my list of things to do this in Philadelphia this weekend as if it’s your last.

  • Today (04.24) – Presidents of the United States of AmericaThe Troc – Back in the 90s, the power pop trio gave us some of the best songs about fruit (“Peaches“) and odd women from boggy marshes (“Lump“). They broke up for a while but are now back together. Lots of energy and clever lyrics. If you’re into that kind of thing. Time: 9pm
  • Saturday (04.25) – Fishtown Shad FestPenn Treaty Park – Fishtown originally gained its name from all the shad that were fished out of the Delaware River. The fish can’t be found around these parts anymore but that’s not stopping Fishtown residents from celebrating what William Penn desribed as “excellent fish.” Events include a Shad Run Race, a historical trolley tour of Fishtown, numerous children’s activities and performances from local musical acts including Hoots and Hellmouth. Oh, there will also be plenty of beer and shad dishes from local vendors. Time: 11am – 5pm
  • Sunday (04.25) – The Mütter Museum – On its website, The Mütter Museum describes itself as “valuable resource for educating and enlightening the public about our medical past and telling important stories about what it means to be human.” People I know who’ve been there describe more as “a museum with all this gross stuff.” My guess is that both statements are probably true. Time: 10am – 5pm

Quotation: When you are through changing, you are through. Bruce Barton

Tune: Before I saw the Aqueduct‘s video for “Living a Lie,” I was completely unaware that David Terry could pass for Kevin Smith.

Gallimaufry: Sometimes, when you try to be a funny and do something like, say, pretend to fall off a bridge, you actually fall off the bridge. Just ask this guy…If you are still on the fence about the idiocy of Glenn Beck and Bill O’Reilly, this will straighten you outThe Flyers shutout the Penguins last night 3-0. Can “The Orange and Black” win the next two games and advance to next round? If they play like they can, they are more than capable of sending Sidney Crosby and his squad to the golf course.

Incoming: Tomorrow morning, I’ll be moving away from East Falls and heading west to East Norriton. (I’ve decided, for the rest of my life, I’ll only live in areas that start with the word “East.”) My internet situation is up in the air but I’ll still be doing daily posts while I adjust to my new schedule. Anyone know anything about East Norriton?