Saturday, October 30, 2004


I guess i was trying to make you think it wasn't me, but i'm not versed in the art of deception... like some people west of here. Well, i've given in now. Call me what you will. Evian is crashed out here and it's only a qtr. to nine, which I just realized is actually only 7:45. he's getting old, you know. We had an adventurous day in Salem, MA. There were people everywhere for a Halloween FrightFest, and most were (of course) dressed like witches. So original. Nothing like fried dough and french fries amongst gravestones from 1680. It was weird. And people were crazy. So evian got grouchy.

I sent my absentee ballot yesterday. It was a close call. I haven't been in MA long enough to vote here. So anyway, I sent off the request last Sat. priority, got the ballot in the mail Th., and mailed it off Fri. priority. After hrs. of npr, the nytimes, the boston globe...who do you think i voted for?


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Thursday, October 28, 2004

who are you? who am i?

So I had this dream 2 nights ago.
In it, I was on a mission to acquire a t-shirt or 2 with some product placement familiar to you people. H-monkey appeared and said he would find a way to get me one (and he was with burb, but burb didn't want to risk it). He got the wrong size. BUT, he was willing to give me a ride home. I wanted a damn t-shirt so wandered off and snuck into the building. An hr person (qm) asked me to stop so he could talk to me, and I simply said, "no," and kept walking. So all these t's are under a table, and I start frantically going through the piles and they all suck.

Meanwhile, h-monkey is looking all over for me, but i've left and ended up in a very busy parking lot. Don't know how I got there.
So, what the hell does this mean? Would someone please send me a damn t-shirt?


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REM--simply amazing

The last time I saw REM live was in the Atlanta Omni and later in Macon, both in 1988 at the beginning and end of the GREEN tour. The band was still a foursome and they were just beginning to enter the mega-star, arena phase of their careers.

They were good, as best I can remember (it was 15 years ago and I was only 18). But as Tegan said on our way home from the Cincinnati concert last night "There is something to be said for seeing a group that has been around a while and has lots of songs to play."

Absolutely! REM was awesome last night. Chalk it up to their recent tour preparation in the Move swing state. Chalk it up to one of America's most political frontmen playing a swing-state less than a week before an election. Make up any excuse you want, but these guys were rockin' last night.

The first 20 minutes alone was just about worth the price of admission and I couldn't believe what I heard. If you ever want to hear some classic REM, catch them on tour when they are thinking election thoughts. The first song was "Around the Sun," title track from the new album and then they quickly swung into a great rendition of one of their mid-career best, "Finest Worksong." Then "Begin the Begin" which led quickly to "Exhuming McCarthy." Some great songs from Document. Truly amazing. I don't know if releasing a greatest hits album made them appreciate their older stuff more or if they are trying to really do some political preaching in late October, but they never would have played those songs in 1988.

The rest of the show is more impressions and the song order is not precise certainly. Tegan and I tried to remember and write them down as we drove home.

They played several songs from Around the Sun and usually the crowd mellowed more then (and appropriately so). "High Speed Train," "Final Straw," "Leaving New Your," "Boy in the Well," the live debut on one of my new favorites "Electron Blue."
Jack T. I know that this latest album hasn't really wowed you and I agree, but it is a shame they didn't release these things as live versions. The emotion, power, and thudding of the drum beats
are so much better live than the studio version of Around the Sun.

Stipe didn't do much talking, except for twice. The first was when he was introducing "I Wanted to Be Wrong" claiming it had more autobiographic "chunks" than any other song he has ever written. Before it was clear, I was convinced they were going to play "World Leader Pretend" but that, alas, didn't happen.

Because it was Ohio they played a great version of "Cuyahoga" (!!) and introduced one great one as "Here is a song you might have heard before" . . . then "The One I Love." Beautiful.

Some other great ones--"Drive," "Losing My Religion," "Bad Day," and "Animal" (from the recent Greatest Hits release), "Imitation of Life" and "Beat a Drum."

The first song of the short encore set was "What's the Frequency Kenneth?" Stipe came back out with no shirt and they performed that one great. Then Stipe put on a Kerry t-shirt to mostly cheers and the band played on. (There were a good number of Republican boo-ers in the audience, but I swear they were all sitting in the top corner of the theater's upper balcony, stage left.) When everything was over, Stipe mugged a bit with his Kerry t-shirt to the crowd--again generating some booing amidst the cheers, but other than that and a short plea to everyone "no matter what side you're on" to go and vote, he was very focused on the music.

The band did a version of "Walk Unafraid" another of my biggest favorites that sounded like it could have fit perfectly on Monster. Raw and driving and very, very good. Near the end of the encore they played "Permanent Vacation" identified as the first song the group ever wrote. It sounded exactly like something four guys would were influenced by the Ramones would write in 1981. The very last song of the night was "Man on the Moon." Not one of their best, but it is better live and the crowd was up and rockin at this point.

Just awesome, really. I don't think I'll wait 15 more years to see these guys live again. They played an incredible set of old and new and just handle themselves like they've been doing it for so long. Just great.


Blogger David said...

I forgot to mention that Tegan bought a shirt before the show and we both noticed that the material was pretty flimsy. Not the heavy guage of REM shirt cotton that we remember from our college days, buying REM shirts at the Statesboro "head" shop.

Well, we checked the label and saw that the shirts were produced in Los Angeles, in a "non-sweat shop" environment. Good politics, right?

Well, that's good and all, but you see what happens when forced to pay laborers a living wage? Cheaper materials.

10:15 AM  

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Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Get Lost!

As my first contribution to this interactive forum, I present this "Lost" summary from tonight's episode:

[Hey burb, I thought nobody liked this white-type-on-dark-background format? It was not approved in design--but maybe that's a good thing.]

First of all, why is it that the vast majority of people on this island don't do shit? I mean, there's supposed to be 46 of them, right? And it's like 10 people doing everything. What are the rest of those losers doing? Why don't they ever just show up and ask for water? WHERE ARE THEY???

(Not to mention--why is it that ONLY JACK could possibly swim out to save Joanna in the last episode? [Joanna is someone else we NEVER KNEW, by the way.] NO ONE ELSE could have pitched in and battled the waves with him? And then tonight, when Lin was beating the crap out of and/or trying to drown Michael, there was no one around to break them up? Or they all just stood around drooling until Sawyer and Sayid showed up to save the day? Please.)

Sun is very lonely.

Bees! A perfect contrivance for getting Jack and Kate to take their shirts off and then investigate cave relics while semi-clad. Charlie, apparently recovering very quickly from his terrifying near-death-by-bee-experience, gets to make a joke about Kate's bra.

What the fuck happened to all the bees?

The Great White Hunter (aka Rourke) appears.

Aha, the plan unfolds. Jack wants to live in the Cave of the Dead. Some suffocatingly obvious references to Genesis. Run, Kate, run!!

But really, this whole episode is the Sun & Lin Show. We get the whole background. I like this device of exploring the characters individually or in pairs. He was a mere waiter! She was the daughter of a super-rich Korean mafia boss! (Or is it Chinese?) Only she didn't know! Or did she?! He ingratiated himself with the father and "agreed" to work for him (more like "was dying to work for him") in exchange for marrying the daugter--old school! Etc. etc. I was riveted.

But allow me to digress--I know the whole Jack/Kate thing is being forced down our throats, but how about a pairing of Kate and Sayid? He's super hot and doesn't appear to be a terrorist.

Oh, never mind. Serious flirting between Jack and Kate. ("Oh, are you checking me out?" "No." "No?" "No, if I was checking you out, you'd know it!") This is obviously getting very serious.

The GWH seems to be all getting religion and stuff.

Sayid is now the self-appointed Sergeant at Arms.



Back at the Cave of the Dead, the wise GWH is trying to talk our darling drug-addicted Charlie out of being a drug addict. Surely he can't just convince Charlie to willingly skip into agony-ridden withdrawal after a two-minute "you know, I know pain too" lecture? But wait! The GWH has another tool at his disposal, an age-old way of talking down drug addicts--bribery! "If you give me the drugs, the Island will give you back your guitar!" And so of course, Charlie turns over the drugs right away, instantly giving up his crippling habit for the possibility of being able to strum a few. And lo and behold! The Island is as good as the GWH's word. Remember, Charlie--the first guitar is free . . .

And finally, they all split into two camps, just like in the real Survivor. Another excellent episode. By the way, all jokes are made with sincere affection. I love this show.

Of course, there is one TEENY, TINY thing . . .

I'm sorry to keep harping on this, but WHERE THE FUCK ARE THE REST OF THE PEOPLE???
I've been keeping track. As far as I can recall, these are the only characters we've met so far:

Large hippie
Cute thief
His bitchy sister
The Dog

A few names escape me. But nevertheless, that makes 14 people and one dog. That leaves 32 people unaccounted for. Who are they? Don't THEY have any issues? (We're pretty much at the stage where EVERYBODY should be having issues.) I guess you might kind of see them sometimes moving around in the background, but . . .

Oh, never mind. I'll just wait and see. The Island will provide.



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Monday, October 25, 2004

The next step in the media empire

Soon you too will become a member of WWYG?! Omnimedia!

Why? Because it's what all the cool kids are doing.

Because you've got stuff to say about that movie that got lots of hype but sure didn't live up to it. (I'm looking at YOU Van Helsing!)
Or maybe you know something about a movie that no one else has heard of?

Maybe you read magazine, web-zines, or Arabic newspapers a lot and you want to share a really interesting post about something that is meaningful to you.

Maybe you really have strong feelings about the mysteries of Lost or simply can't believe the latest plot twist on Alias.

Maybe you've been to a concert recently and you have something to contribute?

Have you read any good books lately or discovered a really good album?

Everything is open for discussion--that's why it's "omnimedia."

Come on . . . why won't you help THIS grow?!


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