Sunday, June 19, 2011

in which i name check the crypt keeper, gerardo, and a bunch of little known rock bands

fun fact #37: i used to have a subscription to "metal edge" magazine, back when rock bands had hair so big that you could practically smell the aquanet wafting out from the centerfold posters.

i was reminded of this first during last week's cleaning binge, and again just a few moments ago, when i ran across a photo of a truly awful motley crue tattoo. (i can't remember exactly where i found the thing, otherwise, i'd include the link. the only good part of it was that mick mars did not resemble the cryptkeeper wearing a black wig in any way whatsoever....a minor feat.)

since the new vacuum showed up about a week and a half ago (a refurbished dyson....very un-rock n' roll of me, i know), i have had the urge to not only vacuum the apartment, but to actually move furniture to do so, as opposed to the "straight up the middle" treatment i used to engage in with the old hoover, which smelled like a leather pants after one concert too many (for the past couple of years) and recently began screaming like axl rose during waxing session. furthermore, i'm doing a little decluttering before moving furniture back to where it belongs.

round one, a little over a week ago, resulted in the rescue of approximately eight balls and a dozen mice (i took apart the living room), as well as a sizeable donation to the vietnam vets. (sorry you missed it- i had a box full of 80s and 90s countdown cds, as well as two vacuums- the one mentioned above, and a handheld, multifunction vacuum whose only actual function was as a paperweight.)

a few days ago, after a less than stellar week, i spent my friday evening vacuuming my apartment (i swear, i dumped another cat's worth of fur out of my vacuum's bin) and semi-reorganizing my bedroom. admittedly, i was not very thorough in my decluttering (remember when michael hutchence died? no? really? would you care to look through the entire freaking box of printed material i got off the internet that weekend? no? well, let me know if you change your mind, as i still haven't sorted through it and weeded out all the sappy poetic tributes fans left in the guestbooks of the websites i visited.), though i did manage to finally purge the majority of the demo tapes from unsigned bands (early to mid-90s- mostly folks who hadn't gotten the message that seattle had pretty much killed metal and that their chances of getting record deals were about equal to that of the original metallica lineup getting back together) from my collection.

i started out with three boxes of cassette tapes....three! i managed to get it down to two, not counting (now that i think about it) the additional box that might still be sitting in my dad's garage in kansas city. some bargain hunter may soon be the proud owner of classic nonhits by bands like "pandora's lunchbox" (or maybe that was the title of the demo. given the fact that the tape was copied on someone's boombox and the insert was handdrawn and photocopied onto hot pink paper, it was kind of hard to tell...), "stinky* fetus", and a whole pile of stuff by david la duke.**

(my copy of "heart of a killer" by winter's bane is staying, due to its cultural/historical significance. i don't recall it getting heavy airplay in my house, but lead singer tim "ripper" owens did go on to replace rob halford in judas priest for a while......)

true, i suppose i could have thinned my collection even more, but that would have meant saying "goodbye" to cassingles (red hot chili peppers, mr. big, damn yankees, gerardo, right said fred- what can i say? i had pretty diverse musical tastes in the 90s), homemade mixtapes (oh, like you never sat by the radio, blank tape in the deck, fingers poised above "play" and "record", waiting for that hot new song the dj promised was "coming up next" about twenty minutes ago......), and little-known releases (undoubtedly plucked out of the bargain bin at sam goody's) from winger, every mother's nightmare and little caesar.****

i'm just not quite ready to take those treasures to goodwill. however, they are more than welcome to my copy of some random cassette by kix (not the cereal), which featured the timeless, i know there was a sticker on the packaging that motivated me to buy it.*****

perhaps i'll revisit those boxes around the time i clean out my closet and tackle the pile of posters ripped from metal edge (trixter, anyone?) that i suspect lurks within.

*i'm not sure it was really "stinky fetus". i know it was "(something) fetus", but i'm at work and the tape is at home, so we're just going to go with "stinky", which, as i recall, is pretty much what i thought of their demo.

**which i might be taking out of the box, as i vaguely recall that his stuff was actually pretty decent. then again, it has been a good fifteen years (at least) since i last listened to him, so i could have him mixed up with one of those semi-decent 90s metal bands, like arcade***.

*** i must share, as it's been a while since i last threw a video up on the blog:

****you've never heard of them? i am not surprised. however, i'm keeping the cassette, as they did pretty good covers of "chain of fools" and "i wish it would rain".

*****oh yes, now i remember. it said "$1.99".

Sunday, June 12, 2011

when in doubt, just shoot it....

i had such high hopes for this afternoon. i was going to spend a few minutes goofing around on facebook (okay, about 90 of them), check the updates over at, and then i was going to settle in and crank out 5-6 hours of work for job #3.

parts one and two of my master plan went off without a hitch. however, the work laptop, which was working perfectly well this morning, seems to have gone on strike, impeding my ability to conquer the third (and, arguably, most important) task on today's "to do" list.

since everything lit up, except for the screen, i thought i might be able to work around the problem by simply hooking up another monitor.

riiiiiiight. technical difficulties are rarely solved that easily, and this case is no exception.

so, rather than test the laptop's usefulness as a frisbee (not likely, as the thing is several years old and probably wouldn't fly more than 5 or ten feet), i decided to channel my frustrations in some other way.

one of the perks of working here at the radio station is that one has access to a full-sized pool table, which is located back in the sales department. (granted, it's a little too close to a couple of walls, but i'm sure that was done on purpose, in order to enable us to work on our "trick" actually being able to hit a ball into a pocket after shooting with your cue about 80 degrees in the air.)

anyway, i decided a game or two of pool would satisfy my desire to hit something, and improve my bad mad pool skillz (all the cool kids still use "z"s to make things plural instead of "s"s, right?) at the same time.

game one went well enough. i pocketed all of the stripes, followed by the solids, though it took me about twenty minutes to clear the table.

game two showed further improvement.....well, sorta. i got all of the solids off the table in about five minutes (yay!), followed by, well, let's just say i was able to pocket the cue ball with startling frequency.

i was going to play myself three times, but decided to call it a draw after two. (i am a sore loser, what can i say?)

so, with high hopes, as soon as i finish this post, i'm going to attempt to turn the laptop on one more time. if it's still feeling temperamental, perhaps i'll show it what i can do with a pool cue.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

note to self: goosebumps do not fill in cellulite

trust me on that- i speak from experience.

i know, i know- just when you'd given up on me (except the spammers, who will believe in me until the day the internet goes down in flames, i suspect), i reappear. perhaps i should officially become a blogging groundhog. i'll promise to surface once a year to check out my shadow, if you promise to occasionally poke me with a stick to make sure i'm still alive over here.

so, anyway, i've decided to hop on here long enough to share a few pictures from my recent road trip, perhaps relate a quick story or two, and then maybe i'll be in the right frame of mind to do some actual work this evening.

what inspired a quickie road trip to dc? well, a good friend from high school hopped on facebook and posted a link to cupid's undie run, along with the message, "anyone wanna form a team?".

my response? "do you have a couch i can crash on?" (thankfully, jenna forgives me for my tendency to let participles dangle.)

a couple of months later, there i was- cruising up I-95 to washington dc. it was a 14 hour (and fifteen minutes, thanks to the crowd at subway on the way back home yesterday) round trip to run (most of) 1.1 miles in my skivvies.....but it was for a worthy cause, which makes it totally okay. (besides, i'm one of those odd people who loves road trips.)

no trip up 95 would be complete without at least a picture of south of the border. sadly, i was already running a couple of hours late and didn't have time to stop.

google maps claimed that the trip would take 8 hours one way. to this i say, "nonsense!". it took me just a hair over seven hours, including two attempts at parallel parking my chariot in dc. (attempt #2 became necessary after i called jenna after attempt #1 to ask if being 2" from the line for the bike lane was considered "close enough" to the curb. sadly, it is not. however, attempt #2 resulted in perhaps my most beautiful parallel parking ever. it also resulted in a call to my dad yesterday, during which i told him i now understood why, whenever we ventured into dc when we were younger, he'd kick sibling and/or myself out of the car to help guide him into parking spaces.)

after an evening spent viewing a timeless classic ("the jerk") with jenna, her husband, and their neighbors, it was time to rest up for the big run.

the next afternoon, jenna, her friend sara (the other member of "the love handlers"), jenna's husband, and i headed off to pour house to register and pick up our free shirts/boxers/beverages.

as you can see, bodhi was there to lend a little moral support.

after getting a little liquid courage (which most runners were doing. in fact, i think i was about the only person there who was drinking water), it was time to strip off our clothes (and a few inhibitions). while initially a little self-conscious about my less-than-toned thighs, after about five minutes of seeing love handles and cellulite (and hearing disgustingly fit 20-somethings whining about the state of their bodies, which was admittedly, a little unexpected), the fact that i was in my underwear no longer fazed me.

just a hair before 2pm, the 400+ of us who were running filed out onto the street in front of pour house. there were cameras everywhere. hopefully, the sight of my thighs didn't break too many of them.

it took a couple of minutes for everyone to get organized, so our team had time for a quick group shot:

the beaver hat was a necessity, as it was maybe forty-something degrees outside. besides, i don't live in dc, and the chances of anyone remembering me in a year should be pretty slim.

oh- you'll notice in the picture above that there's a web address written on jenna's arm. if you have a moment or two, go check it out. (i'll wait for you to come back.)

then, after a false start, we were off. my initial plan was to try and stay in the middle of the pack, where my thighs and i could hide. sadly, the middle of the pack got ahead of me. however, i'm pleased to report that, possibly for the first time in my life, i ran the greater part of a mile, and wasn't the last person across the finish line. (a small victory is still a victory, dammit!)

post run, we retrieved our clothes from jenna's husband and wasted no time whatsoever putting them back on. other folks, however, were less the guy jenna and sara overheard saying, "let's go back into the bar. maybe we'll put our clothes back on; maybe we won't." it was a vaguely tempting thought, but since we needed to make our way back home so i could hit the road for the return trip to south carolina, we passed.

besides, there's always next year.