From the monthly archives:

September 2006

Appetizer: What is your favorite herb or spice?
My favorite Herb is Drummond.

Soup: Name a song you like but haven’t heard in a long time.
I have been looking for the entire Here at the Home album by an old Boston band called Tribe for a while now. It is out of print, and I can’t find any of the MP3s either. A lot of the songs were re-recorded and released on an album called “Abort” a couple years later, but the HATH versions are far superior. If you happen across this, and you have the record, please put me out of my misery.

Salad: Write down everything you need to do. How many tasks are there?
Like I mentioned here recently, I need a readily accessible notebook to keep my life in some degree of order. I have pages and pages of bullets that I cross off with a highlighter when completed. If I lost my beloved notebook, it would be tantamount to Henry Jones Sr. losing the Grail Diary. Without first getting to sleep with the hot Nazi.

Main Course: Tell something interesting about one of your family members.
My first cousin, Reiner, lives in Spain with a Brazilian woman. That just sounds delightful. R-Man, does she have a sister? A brother, even. Hell, if I were in Spain technically I’d be on vacation. And what happens on vacation, stays on vacation. Especially if it’s kind of gay.

Dessert: What’s the latest you’ve ever stayed awake?
All damn night, obviously. I remember the first time I watched the sun come up. I was about 8 and we were at a party on Prince Edward Island. My parents were inside getting liquored up, and all us kids were outside on one of the famous red sand roads daring eachother to let fireworks explode in our hands. Yes, exceptional parenting on PEI.

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So I’m Excited. Frig Off.

by Dave on September 28, 2006

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Let He Who Is Without Sin Podcast The First Stone.

by Dave on September 28, 2006

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Seeing as I don’t have enough half-finished side projects in the works, Saturday Detroit Velvet Smooth and I will be recording the first of what we hope will be a long, funny series of GoonBlog hockey podcasts. The bulk of it will be recorded at my place, but we’ll also be taking a digital voice recorder to Saturday’s pre-season Bruins/Rangers game. The resulting rough mess will then be painstakingly edited by yours truly, with sound effects, music and the best bits of Chris and I slagging eachother off rounding out the final product.

The goal here is to create something that is more entertaining than it is informative. There are currently 3 or 4 hockey podcasts that I have listened to for research purposes that could put a speed freak to sleep in about 2 minutes. Chris and I have been working on our routine for the better part of 20 years, and I think we’re going to come away with something non-sports fans can enjoy too. We’ll also likely need the services of a good Boston lawyer by the time we’re done ripping through Bud cans and sensitive subject matter. I may also need to read myself a good SEO blog afterwards just to calm my nerves.

We now return to our regularly scheduled blog after that short break for search engine indexing spiders“.

When the final version is up, I’ll let you all know. You’ll be able to download it as an MP3, easily throw it on your iPod or listen to it in a browser. You don’t need an iPod to listen to Podcasts – that’s a very common misconception. Another common misconception is that there’s a snowball’s chance I won’t drop my $80 digital recorder into a cup of Garden draft by the 3rd period. But we’ll see how she goes, eh?

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Drummer Johnny Fay once famously quipped to Billboard that being the biggest band in Canada was “like being the world’s tallest midgets.” HipWiki

Gord Downie appears to be flapping out a poutine-induced dutch oven at the beginning of The Hip‘s new video for ‘In View’ – and things go downhill from there. Throughout the course of the clip, he lifts dumbells, has severe communications problems, gets chased through Shanghai after stealing a cell – all in an attempt to phone a woman lass than half his age. I’m not sure what is happening here, but I think my first interpretation which revolved around the protagonist being an aging, Asian-hating pedophile is a little off. Only repeated viewings will tell for sure.

And repeated viewings there will be. It’s a catchy little tune, along the lines of Fireworks or Music at Work, and I can’t wait to hear the rest of the album, World Container, which is being released in Canada on October 16th.

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The Dregs of MySpace.

by Dave on September 25, 2006

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MySpace is a lot of things to a lot of people, and one of the more poignant analogies I’ve heard is that it’s like a web enabled high school. This is even truer when you consider all of the recent virtual bullying cases that have been in the news. They’re all here – the nerds, the jocks, the band geeks, the parking lot blowjob queens with daddy issues. Maybe that was just CCHS. You get my point.

My roomate and I are working on a MySpace Layout site, so I’ve been delving into the seedy subculture a bit. Urban Dictionary has a ton of tags – MySpace loser, whore, hooka, hootchie, dork – they’re all here. The real bullies couldn’t be far behind the name-calling. I sniffed around to see what I could find in terms of malicious MySpace-related sites and these are the best of what I unearthed…

– Daily Raider’s MySpace Loser of the Week: This site showcases a particularly jaw-dropping profile every 7 days. The author isn’t particularly gifted in terms of humor in the accompanying copy, but it’s worth a look. Pay particular attention to Lucky Charms McHomosexual.

– The MySpace Losers Experiment: “One day I decided to create a fake profile – a young Swedish girl, complete with bogus info survey and girly layout – and began adding. Eventually, with so many new friends, I began getting some strange messages.” Our little decoy duck attracted a breathtaking array of scumbags, and he includes photos and email examples.

– WorstOfMySpace.com: This site has been around for a year, and has a lot of potential if only the owner updated it more than once a month. The Top 10 list of MySpace cliches is right on the money, and this kid is a good writer. Buddy, if you see this post, email me and we’ll make some money together.

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Crickets have become the new finger-food for beer drinkers in Vietnam, now that patrons have managed to eat every soda gun fruitfly in the country.

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Highest Of The Highbrow Humor.

by Dave on September 23, 2006

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This movie may come and go with little aplomb, so I feel obliged to tell you all: Jackass 2 is two of the most entertaining hours of celluloid since One Night in Paris. I was never bored, my gut ached afterwards from laughing and I did something I’ve never done while watching a movie: retched violently. Twice. So if that sounds like your bag, get yourself down to the cineplex. And bring that bag with you so you can throw up in it. Seriously.

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Don’t Tell Boss I Laughed At This.

by Dave on September 22, 2006

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Especially since it looks like him.

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Amy & Jason’s Stag & Doe.

by Dave on September 22, 2006

in Heartwarming

I’ve just posted the photos from last weekend’s brouhaha at the illustrious Welland Soccer club. You’ll also see a few photos from the Friday – with peelers apparent and a few choice stills from Chopper’s garage. More explication to come.

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Appetizer: Measured in minutes, how much exercise have you had this week?
Just walking around, really. When I arrived at the Buffalo Airport last Friday, I checked my voicemail and discovered I had to wait an hour to be picked up. So I left the terminal, suitcase dragging behind me, and tried to find a bar, restaurant, anything. I saw the golden arches in the distance and walked 20 minutes to get there. The highway was too busy to cross, so I remained cheeseburgerless. By the time I walked back to arrivals and read for 20 minutes – Gary was there.

Soup: If you had to change your blog title to something else, what would it be?
It wouldn’t be my real name – that’s for sure. I’ve gotten into trouble a few times and honestly have started to pull punches a bit. It’s unfortunate, but I’m not frigging Walter Winchell. I do this for fun, not for integrity, so I’d rather it didn’t get me killed at any point.

Salad: Name one television show you watched when you were 9-12 years old.
I was a huge Three’s Company fan. I could tie plotlines to landlords – “yeah, that was during the Norman Fell era, not Don Knotts. And Mona hadn’t schtupped Larry yet”. There’s worse things to be obsessed with when you’re young. Like going outside to play.

Main Course: If someone gave you $50 to spend with the one condition that it had to be educational, what would you purchase?
Yet another self help book, probably. I haven’t read any of them yet. I can just see them on the shelf when I’m in bed and they make me feel better about the fact I’m watching Three’s Company on Nickelodeon as opposed to learning about investing. Jack invested lots of money at the Regal Beagle if I remember correctly. I’m forever thankful I’m not easily distracted.

Dessert: Do you tend to prefer dark colors, neutral shades, or pastel hues?
I tend to be heterosexual. But if this answers the question at all, I likey cobalt blue.

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I Don’t Even Know What Espionage Means, Sir.

by Dave on September 21, 2006

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Once upon a time I worked at a company who insisted I sign a lengthy and vague non-compete / non-disclosure policy which obviously benefitted absolutely no one but themselves. Supposing I had decided to sell a 500-word webcam product review to the Russians – what could have been my fate, I wonder? I think non-competes are designed to make CEOs feel better about themselves. Especially if you sell, like, rabbit food or something. I’ve even seen interns made to sign the things. Let’s act out a little scene here for illustrative purposes:

– “Let me get this straight. I am going to intern here and basically work for you for free for 300 hours this summer.”
– “That’s the offer on the table, yes.”
– “And on top of that, I have to sign a document saying I will never perform the skills I am interning here to learn in practice for any other company – for a period of at least 5 years?”
– “Bingo, baby.
– Are you going to guarantee me a job at the end of my internship?
You’ve got a better chance of seeing one-legged a cat bury a turd on a frozen pond. So do we have a deal?
– What color is the sky in your world?

And… scene. Be careful what you sign, kids. I am not going to go into any amount of detail, but I’ve seen some silly things recently that have made my head spin with disbelief. Or maybe that was just all the mentholated schnapps.

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“This town, is coming like a ghost town
All the clubs have been closed down
This place, is coming like a ghost town
Bands won’t play no more
Too much fighting on the dance floor”

I knew who the Specials were, and I’d heard A Message to Rudy hundreds of times over many years with complete indifference. Although I was a fan of the Clash, and knew a lot about the whole ska scene via UB40-ish knock-offs and the musical guests on The Young Ones, I was completely unimpressed. Then one evening I was walking across Government Center in the dark with my new iPod on shuffle – and the opening mournful organ chords of Ghost Town started playing. I never saw the song the same way again.

The club referred to in the lines “All the clubs are being closed down” and “Too much fighting on the dance floor” was The Locarno. It is now Coventry Central Library.

I had listened to it subconciously a dozen times – it features very prominently in one of my all time favorite movies, Snatch, for example – but honing in on one tune completely out of context can really give you a new appreciation for it. It can also be heard in Shaun of the Dead and a particular episode of Father Ted, when it is the only record a DJ remembers to bring to a church dance.

Ghost Town is my pentultimate ‘driving at night song’ and I subjected several carloads of people to it over the summer during road trips to the Cape and Canada. And usually with favorable results. It’s spooky, cool, multi-layered and catchy. It changes pace and pitch pretty wildly throughout and features a wide array of insturments as use of brass was one of The Specials, and really ska in general’s, trademarks.

The video makes them look like a bunch of complete dorks, but they were very popular during their day in England, and went on to form several sub-groups including Fun Boy Three. In fact, The Ghost Town EP was at number one in the British charts when the pressures within the band and the strains of touring finally resulted in their demise in 1981.Ghost Town perfectly echoed the feelings in Britain at the time, and reached the number one spot in the charts to a backdrop of inner city riots in Liverpool.” I’ve read that Specials’ shows were plagued by violence, as can be explicated from the lyric snippet at the top of this article. This is especially odd, considering the fact that in the Ghost Town clip they make Depeche Mode look like John Wayne.

The Specials have a really comprehensive website with all kinds of interesting fanboy content. Friends and members of the band have gone to painstaking lengths to document the history, archive stories and provide audio and video clips. Watch the seminal Ghost Town video here and then click on through for more info.

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Damn It Gym, I’m A Doctor Not A…

by Dave on September 19, 2006

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I need some advice, PITF readers. Since our office move I have lost my gym, and I need to find a new one – stat. I am reasonably sure that my several months of lethargy have been the root of some greater issues – including a creativity lapse that would make Jayson Blair do a doubletake. I’m not looking to join a spinning class or get into Yoga – I simply want an eliptical and some freeweights. Maybe a bench press thrown in for good measure. Where should I look?

It also has to be close to the Financial District and/or North End. If I have to take a detour on the way to or from work to get to the gym, it’ll be easier for me to justify not going. Know thyself. Know thyself does not like to go to the gym. Once I get into the groove it’ll be easy. I’ve done it before and I’ll do it again. I simply need my location of cardiac enhancement to be proximous to both my dwelling and workplace, old chap. I also don’t want it to be mobbed at all hours of the day and night. I’m not interested in any social aspect. In fact, if I could work out in a parallel dimension, I would.

Help me out, kids. Where’s good and where’s close? My arteries thank you in advance. Of severe clogging. Maybe start here.

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Note To Self: Frig Off.

by Dave on September 14, 2006

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I’ve been like that little Dutch boy with his finger stuck in the dyke for the last couple of weeks. Yeah, yeah – so you’ve heard. I’ve done it to death. We get it, Pye. You’re busy at work. We know. I’ll bet you didn’t know that I’ve been coming up with some interesting methods of keeping organized as a result. I bet you also didn’t know that she gave me a ride on her Harley after the Indigo Girls concert.

I’ve tried Outlook tasks and meeting reminders. I’ve tried BaseCamp. I spent an hour on the phone getting a Salesforce plugin demo. I read Covey. I started getting to work earlier and staying later. I began delegating things I wouldn’t have dreamt of letting someone else do a month go. And then do you know what I did?

I went to CVS and bought a little maroon notebook. And now everything is fine.

People are wired differently, and I suppose when you’re in the eye of the storm you really learn a few things about yourself. What I’ve learned is that I benefit greatly from writing down every little thing I have to do over the course of a given week, because otherwise it may slide off the plate. And I mean everything. I’ve got potboilers like “haircut” and “cat litter” in there at the moment. We make my grandmother do that so she’ll remember to take her medication, so I’m not exactly over the moon about my new solution. Or not being able to steal my Grandmother’s medication anymore.

So if the next time you see me I’m jotting stuff down in a little notebook, and I tell it’s for impromptu Haiku, I’m lying. I’ve probably just reminded myself to flush the toilet.

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You Don’t Know From Busy.

by Dave on September 12, 2006

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I have never experienced a blog lull of this magnitude in my 2+ years of writing. I hate the “I’ve been so busy” excuse with a passion. You know the one I mean. That annoying cop out that some people feel absolves them of any and all guilt, regardless of what they happen to be apologizing for. It’s just before “Whatever” in the short list of Manchurian Candidate-esque trigger words that will one day land me in jail for murdering someone with an air conditioner.

Say, weren’t we supposed to get married last weekend?”
Yeah, sorry I got really busy. So, did you see Grey’s Anatomy?”

I am not going to rattle off all the hectic stuff that’s going on. That would be about as interesting as Grey’s Anatomy. So please just empathize a little bit with your old pal Dave. I’ll wander back soon.

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