|Friday, November 26, 2004
SMiLE: Please bear with me as I play catch up on a few things that have registered blips on my radar in recent months (blogs are supposed to skew towards current events, aren't they?). I was in attendance on October 25 in Dallas for Brian Wilson's live performance of his previously unfinished (and legendary) album, SMiLE. First, his backing band, the Wondermints, are a tight act with a thick sound and much more than a requisite talent for harmonies. Plus, they've got a guy with mad falsetto pipes. The concert was divided into thirds: ballads, followed by SMiLE, followed by up-tempo surf tunes. The audience was on its feet and dancing for the entire third act. The man himself, Brian Wilson, is still quite capable of quality vocals, though, for his live performances, he stays comfortably within the middle of his register. For a thirty-something lad such as myself, the perks of working for an Oldies radio station are far and between; but, on this night, my day job provided me with back stage access to Mr. Wilson after the show. His mental demons are well-known, so I was semi-prepared for the individual who patiently waited on fans in groups of threes and fours behind a table in a small room to the rear of the Nokia Live auditorium building. He seemed emotionally spent for the evening and aimed a blank, sad expression towards the far wall until spoken to. I thanked him for his occasional appearances on his Web site's message board; and he sent a brief but seemingly heart-felt "yeah, yeah" in my direction. Alas, social interaction, especially with total strangers, isn't his bag. Bottom line: I'm a fan, and the music exceeded all of my expectations. Love and Mercy, Brian.
Little Bill: Thanks to my two-year-old daughter, for the first time in years and years the weekend version of myself is sharing its coffee with Saturday morning cartoons. It's quite a change from the days of relative quiet and CSPAN's Washington Journal. But I'm happy to report that, thanks to Bill Cosby (and Nick Jr.), there's a jewel of a show for this generation of footy pajama-wearing tikes. The character is named Little Bill, and he spends his days with friends and family learning the ropes of his inner city neighborhood. The cherry on top is the super-cool soundtrack of mellow jazz which follows Little Bill everywhere.
Thursday, November 25, 2004
One State, Two State, Red State, Blue State: I've been meaning to write a column on the presidential election. But it's the 25th of the month, and, as you can see, nothing on that topic from yours truly has yet materialized on the front page of the CST site.
For the record, my vote went for Ralph Nader (a write-in here in Texas). I didn't support his position on the war (I've been a hawk all along), but I felt too strongly about some of the other planks in his platform--his opposition to Big Media, for instance--to let his dovishness get in the way of my otherwise enthusiastic support for his candidacy and what it represented. Hopefully, the Democrats will adopt some Greener issues in time for the next election.
A Real Fum Bucker: If I weren't so put off by the pity party being thrown in the Blue States, Blue Counties, and other Blue nether regions of the U.S. electoral map, then I might have a little sympathy for them. But their post-election temper tantrum is growing more unattractive by the day. If they boast such a monopoly on wit, culture, taste, and intellect, then why on earth weren't they able to persuade the dim-witted brutes in the Red States to vote for the Blue candidate? If I'm to buy their line, then training a dog to fetch the morning paper should prove more challenging, shouldn't it?
My take? Try nominating a better candidate next time. John Kerry was the problem; not the people who weren't comfortable with him becoming president. Still, I'd take Kerry over Gore any day.
Slow Start: Well, there's a cruddy brand of sickness making the rounds here in Dallas. Stuffy ears, and stuffy nose, and a scratchy throat--that's what I've got.
Nevertheless, here's a cyberspacial wish of Happy Thanksgiving to everyone within the sound of my key tapping!
Wednesday, November 24, 2004
Straight From The Tap: This week's New Yorker discovers an obsession for contraband raw milk on the streets of NY. Seems like a pretty harmless black market crowd, right? Until you read this from one of its number:
A dog walker named Danny took a philosophical view. This is a challenge to the commodification of life itself, he said, before adding that he regularly ingests raw animal foods, such as cow hearts. I clean off any arteries, cut it into small pieces, and I eat it.
No marinade? someone asked. No mustard?
I just cut it up, he said. Im a minimalist."
A minimalist? Or a barking lunatic.
Getting My Blog On: Now that I've become addicted to several blogs, I figure it's time to launch one of my own here on the Coffee Shop Times site. Maybe more CST columnists will follow suit. Should have lots to say--maybe even on a daily basis.
I've tried to make this as easy on the eyes as possible, while remaining semi-faithful to CST's overall color scheme. I work on a 17-inch monitor at 800x600 screen resolution, so, from this vantage point at my computer desk, I think I've achieved something I'll stick with for a while.
Comments and feedback will always be welcome at: BraveSirBlogger@CoffeeShopTimes.com.