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Friday, March 11, 2011

Guilty Pleasures

The Road to Somewhere is filled with potholes and detours as we have all learned.  Today, after another sleepless night caused by a failing, screaming cat, I attempt to gain clarity.  First up, I have been following the old cat all over the house and waking her up.  Occassionally I scream in her ear before forcibly removing her from whatever bed she has chosen.  The highlight of last night was her knocking over some wire hangars.  At 1am the loud crash to our hard wood floors sounded like cars crashing into buildings, not unlike what is happening on the Japanese coast right now.  Add to that her shrill, bellowing sound of her death cries...  my God!!  That reminds me...  be right back.

Ok, I am back.  Took her from my bed (screaming and clawing) and put her outside.  It stopped raining so she can deter the squirrels from tearing up the yard.  She has claws, it will be fine.  But really?  All the shit going and I have to worry about an aged cat keeping me up???  Sound like a perfect time to get a puppy.

It will not stop me from guilty pleasures.  Taking free tix for tonight's Big East semi's is first and foremost.  The excitement coming from an 8 year old girl has been amazing.  The fact that she watched the end of Rutgers/St John's the other day, and was outraged the refs blew RU's chances, warms my heart.  I will hope for another 6 OT thriller from Syracuse/UConn tonight.  I would never expect her to hang for the late game.  And ND should run over Louisville anyway.   Aside from that, lots of new stuff this year the Cialis crowd should be into.

Music:

After nearly 15 years with Directv, I switched to Fios yesterday.  Mainly done to save some money, I discovered a revelation:  MTVU (http://www.mtvu.com/.)  When I first bought Directv(http://www.directv.com/,) in 1998 my revelation was MTV2.  Now, that channel is the wasteland of bad tv.  I see old Cribs episodes and pimping of one's ride.  If I am up at 3am I might see a video or two.  Typically it would be bad rap or bad emo.  Yesterday I found MTVU on the dial and as unable to change the station.  I was digging video's by Chiddy Bang (my daughter and her friend could nto look away), Matt and Kim, Sleigh Bells, and Arcade Fire, to name a few.  It should be well established that I am pretty dense.  I grew up on videos.  I remember a half hour show on Philadelphia's local channel called Video Rock.  11pm every night they gave me Thomas Dolby, or Rockwell, Bow Wow Wow, Eddy Grant.  Truly awful stuff.  It was spoon-fed, low brow craziness.  And if it were on tonight I would watch, smiling ear to ear.  Now, I can appreciate the music by itself.  I love a nice care ride with the radio playing.  Live concerts are most rewarding.  But, when I see a great video married to music.  I am into it.  I hated Black Keys' "Tighten Up" upon first dozen listens.  But when I saw the brilliant and funny video it changed my mind.  Same thing has happened in the past.  Eels "Last Stop: This Town" did that same thing to me.  It helps to see the band.  It gives me a greater idea of how they think.  OK GO made the great treadmill video a few years back.  It was campy and innovative.  Now, they keep trying to recapture that lightning and it comes off as desperate.  I have tuned their music out as a result.  I would never say the video transcends the music.  But it certainly can enhance.  I will turn off "Born this Way" from Lady Gaga on the radio.  Damn it if I did not watch the whole effin thing last week!!!  And the whole theme/concept of the video is a mess.  I know I am not the first to say it, but does Madonna get a co-writing credit for that song?  Maybe some royalties?

Needless to say thank you Verizon.  If I go back to Directv you will really have to do something poorly.  Music videos, 24-7, has won me over. 

A couple of songs have my attention these days.  The first, is The Raconteurs "Old Enough" Featuring Ricky Skaggs & Ashley Monroe.  Duh, winning.  Ashley Monroe has a voice reminiscent of Emmylou Harris and Nicolette Larson.  Skaggs and White riff nicely on mandolin/guitar respectively.  Vocals and tempo are incredible.  I wonder sometimes how I fell into these bluegrass traps, but I welcome it.  And Jack White is without question a major and influential talent.  Check it out here, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v4QbEcVVBHM.  Like the transition into "Wake up Little Susie" in particular.

The other, naturally, is Avril Levigne's "What the Hell?"  Maybe because it is so juvenile and airy?  Maybe because she is adorable, and maybe a little off?  Or maybe cause it's got a good beat and you can dance to it?  Whatever, I am into it.  Take a look should you dare: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tQmEd_UeeIk.

Other bands waking me from a slumber include Fitz and the Tantrums, Two Door Cinema Club and Decemberists.  Looking forward to seeing The Decemberists again in Brooklyn later this Spring.  Remember being amazed how much of a shoman Colin Melloy was.  Sorry, check this out too...  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u5C2WVCruPM  Incredible!!  Why cant they play near here, and soon???  The National featuring Sufjan Stevens on Letterman.  Please but their album "High Voilet."

Television:

The Onion News on TV (http://www.ifc.com/.)  I always look forward to reading their paper on the Subway.  It is the perfect 6 train companion from Astor to 28th St.  With the addition of Brooke Alvarez and her fake news staff, The Onion has reached new heights.  Should you get IFC take a look.  They parody everything cable news holds high.  I really enjoyed the piece about Obama being kidnapped on inauguration day and replaced with an imposter.  Malia was quoted as being "Relieved they found my dad.  I was mad my dad was so weak and cowardly."

I am not crazy for Will Ferrell and Adam McKay's "Funny or Die Show" on HBO.  I do however like the one called "Juggalo News."  In fact anything Insane Clown Posse entertains me.

Bib Huggins, head coach Wes Virginia, is also must see tv.  His intensity and glare, not to mention his tracksuit, tell me it is March Madness.  He is exactly the coach I would send my son to play for.  He will smother you with critiscm, but be the first one helping you get rid of the evidence after you killed someone.  In these days we need that kind of loyalty, don't we?

Food:

Sugar.   You never know how much depression can affect your day to day.  Eating and sleeping have become less important.  I have lost weight, great.  Questioning my choices though.  It seems it has been a non-stop orgy of Whole Foods chocolate covered cherries, Nutter Butters, Cadbury Cream eggs and all sorts of sugary cereals.  Protein and vegetables have taken a back seat.  And I mean the back of "The Sweet Hereafter" bus.  They were already the misfits relegated to the back, now they are off a cliff drowning in frozen waters.  Hmm, gotta do a better job.  I know the remedy...  food at the Garden tonight.  Maybe some $10 Bud lights too.  Maybe sugar should not be on the guilty pleasures list.  Sounding more like necessary evils.

Wow, that was more than 10 minutes.  Guess I should see if the cat is still alive.  I am unsure which answer I prefer.

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