Friday, September 15, 2006

Random Work Venting, 2

A blog entry in song form! Thanks to my online friend Tonya for sharing her bandwidth, and for sharing the song, and to Ray, whomever and wherever you are for singing it. With only a few days to go until the big event, we had our big staff meeting yesterday to determine what was left to do, and make sure that everything was done. As a result, I'd just like to dedicate Ray's little song to all of my readers, Grouchbutt, and, especially, everyone on my work team - except "P", who has vanished this week with two sick days and a poorly-timed vacation, and who will not be returning until the day of the event. Because, as far as we can tell, he hasn't completed a single fucking thing he said he would do.

And if he fails to show on the day of the event, I believe our next dedication will probably involve death metal.

Edit: Here's an mp3 of the same file, since Mac computers don't particularly like wma formats. Can't say that I really do either...

Saturday, September 09, 2006


Horticulture Oh, well. With regard to the last sentence of my last entry, let’s just pretend I was talking about Veteran’s Day weekend, and am therefore wonderfully early. Thus endeth my writer's block.

Took my Boo to see Zero 7 last night at the Fineline as an anniversary present (September 21, in case you’re wondering). About five years ago, he was listening to an online Alpine radio station called Radio Ellébore when he first heard Destiny. He loved it, and also another, completely different track called This World. He ended up ordering the CD from Amazon UK because nobody locally had even heard of them. My how things change.

Last night’s concert was completely sold out, and if I hadn’t gotten tickets the first day they were available, we probably couldn’t have gone. Instead, I was lucky enough to splash out for the last balcony table, which provided an excellent view of the 800 or so folks standing in the audience and some very up-close and personal views of the performers, since we were seated just above stage right. Should have brought the camera. We could have gotten some killer shots of the opener José González for sure, and even the relatively more up-tempo Zero 7 wouldn’t have challenged my low-light skills too much. It was really a fine show. I certainly had no idea going in what to expect from what is essentially a duo – a largely electronica/keyboard duo at that – which generally augments each song they’ve recorded with a large and rotating roster of hired talent. Fortunately, they brought along one of their most frequent collaborators in the form of Sia Furler, the stunningly-voiced Aussie who lends her pipes to their big hit Destiny and my personal favorite Distractions. (And whom some of the more clueless suburban bimbos in our general vicinity seemed to think is Zero 7. Sigh.)

González also sang on a few selections, as he is featured on Zero 7’s latest album, as well as opening the show with a solo-acoustic set. If you’ve seen the commercial with the bouncing balls in San Francisco, you already know everything you need to know about his solo work. It’s nice, but it all. sounds. just. the. same. Still, considering some of the other opening acts I’ve seen this summer, it did not suck.

The crowd was younger than we expected (thank you Garden State, you boring piece of tripe). However, it was a lot more normal than the crowd I encountered a couple of weeks ago at Marty Casey and the Lovehammers. Oy. At least people who go to see movies leave the house once in a while. Much of the Marty fan base seems to live out their entire existence in front of the TV – ordering clothes and jewelry on QVC, eating fresh, hot delivery from Dominos and Pizza Hut, and, of course, becoming rabid devotees of Rockstar InXS. It can be a bit disturbing to find out who exactly shares your taste sometimes. Almost as disturbing as watching grossly obese women with gigantic perms and hair clamps sit in wheelchairs at a rock show and sing along with every. single. word. Not that it’s Marty’s fault his fans are unusual freaky fucking scary as hell. He’s a very charismatic performer with nice biceps and low-slung jeans, and a tendency to talk too much (shut up and sing!) As Jen said watching him, he may have missed his calling, because he’d have been a great dancer. I think that’s why he seems to photograph so poorly – most of his sexy derives not from his looks but from the way he moves. However, whenever I think of him being sexy now, I can’t seem to avoid picturing obese wheelchair-bound women with giant curly perms masturbating furiously while singing along to Hold On. It disturbs me.

A picture of, uh, a sheep...

In other news, Boo and I went to the State Fair a lot, as has been well-documented elsewhere. The State Fair talent contest is another scary adventure, and I can tell you without hesitation that I will never again attend the pre-teen division semi-finals without being high. Really, really high. Retarded-astronaut high. It’s one thing when a 12-year-old plays Purple Haze on his electric guitar – it’s kinda cool. It’s another thing when some sweet 10-year-old dressed like a $15-a-pop crackwhore dances to Gimme Gimme. And when some lovely African-American girl with obvious gospel training wins the nightly competition by belting out, in a faux country-western accent no less, the white-redneck anthem Proud to be an American, you really need dope just to keep your head from exploding in the cognitive dissonance.

Fortunately, the open division competition, the 4-H show, and these guys helped to make the world seem normal again.

Dan Newton and the Cafe Accordion Orchestra

Well, wrapping this up, I think I'd just like to say that milestones suck. There have been a lot of them lately. The “little son” of some friends of ours is now a six-foot four eighteen-year-old as of last week, still slowly recovering from a heart-crushing breakup with his first long-term girlfriend. Some close friends celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary in August, which served as a reminder that our 10th wedding anniversary is approaching like a speeding freight train. Which leads to the inevitable comparisons of what their 10 years seems like and what I wish ours had been. And, well, autumn is always a bit introspective for me anyway. Shorter days will do that. The fact is that 15 years together (we were together for five years before we got married) is fucking difficult. It’s rewarding as you can imagine…but.

Sentences that end with “but” pretty much say it all when you’ve been together a while. “Of course I’m happy…but.” “You know I love you…but.” “I’m deeply attracted to you…but”. Boo and I have had at least two big DTR’s in the past four weeks (third definition). By the way, young readers, if you’re somehow hoping that DTR’s go away when you actually settle in with someone, guess again. You’ll be happier than you’ve ever been…but…and thus DTR. Again. And again.

I’ll just be glad when the month is over, and we’re starting something (the next ten years, I guess, as well as uh, winter) instead of reaching something and trying to decide if it’s a success or not. Honestly, it shouldn’t matter. It is what it is. From here it can be better or worse, which is what we agree to when we wed. As I haven’t been at all sure what I’ve wanted to say about it, it’s contributed a bit to my writer’s block in the past three weeks. So here’s the elephant, now let’s move on. And I’ll keep trying to turn those “buts” into “ands”. “I love you…and I need some things to change” means something different, and more positive, than “I love you…but I need some things to change.”

And so we’re full circle, as I started this post with our anniversary celebration. And now I’m going to listen to Distractions, because last night Sia Furler made me cry when she sang it, and I think I know why.

“I love you, I love you, I love you, I do. I only make jokes to distract myself from the truth.”