Saturday, November 21, 2009

They Won't Break Me

God, I love you, Youtube.

Guns N Roses, still a young, vital group, before they got psychotic and old and tired and stupid,at the Ritz on a tiny, sweaty stage, playing their guts out.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Who Is She?

According to my IPod,

She's A Mover (Big Star)
She's A Woman (The Beatles)
She's Always A Woman (Billy Joel)
She's Got a Broken Heart (Bill Hicks)
She's Got a Way (Billy Joel)
She's Leaving Home (The Beatles)
She's My Baby (The Traveling Wilburys)
She's Right On Time (Billy Joel)
She's The One (Bruce Springsteen)
She Builds Quick Machines (Velvet Revolver)
She Came In Through The Bathroom Window (The Beatles)
She Gotta Smile (Stephen Lynch)
She Is A Diamond (Evita)
She Just Wants To Be (REM)
She Loves You (The Beatles)
She Mine (Velvet Revolver)
She Moves On (Paul Simon)
She Said She Said (The Beatles)
She Said Yeah (Paul McCartney)
She Sells Sanctuary (The Cult)
She Talks To Angels (The Black Crowes)

An even cheaper trick

"A girl came in the cafe and sat by herself at a table near the window. She was very pretty with a face fresh as a newly minted coin if they minted coins smooth flesh with rain freshened skin, and her hair was black as a crow's wing and cut sharply and diagonally across her cheek.

I looked at her and she disturbed me and made me very excited. I wished I could put her in the story, or anywhere, but she had placed herself so she could watch the street and the entry and I knew she was waiting for someone. So I went on writing.

The story was writing itself and I was having a hard time keeping up with it. I ordered another rum St. James and I watched the girl whenever I looked up, or when I sharpened the pencil with a pencil sharpener with the shavings curling into the saucer under my drink.

I've seen you, beauty, and you belong to me now, whoever you are waiting for and if I never see you again, I thought."

-Ernest Hemingway, "A Movable Feast"

I know exactly what he is talking about here, except for the pencil and the Earth shattering talent parts.

Something I have always wondered about-has the word processor fundamentally changed the act of writing? I wonder if the intense focus you need to type up handwritten manuscript pages on a typewriter made the writing different? Whereas now, with editing orders of magnitude easier, we write differently-more sloppy, less precise?

(For you kids-a "typewriter" was a mechanical device for putting words on a sheet of paper. Google it.)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Probably the cheapest NaBloPoMo trick ever

As literally dozens of you know, along with being NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month), it is NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month). The latter challenge is to post something meaningful every day during the entire month of November. And, since I am a contrary cuss who doesn't like streaks being broken, I bring you today the beginning of my NaNoWriMo novel, tentatively called "The Last of the Big Time Spenders".

"There's no good reason to answer the phone, I thought.
I heard the insistent buzzing. My phone was plugged in, charging, sitting on the floor. I had left it on “vibrate”, and there it was, vibrating away, asking for my attention. Nobody ever calls me who I want to talk to, so why answer it? Especially on Monday-it was surely a bill I had forgotten to pay, or one I had deliberately ignored, hoping to be able to eat food that week.
I let it vibrate, rolling over on my mattress. I called it a futon, but it wasn't, it was just an old mattress sitting on the floor in my apartment. My four room apartment, on top of a music store, full of emptiness. When Nicole was here...stop it, I told myself. Nicole isn't here. Nicole isn't interested in you. She isn't interested in your gender, frankly, at least not now. So just stop it.
The phone stopped. I stared at it, the display glowing with a message left by the caller. One or another employer, wanting me to do something, or my credit card company, wanting me to pay something. It might be a student's parent, calling to cancel, or complain about my fees-my living room was also my studio, where I wrote songs, practiced, and thought. I would occasionally try to teach sullen preteens how to play guitar downstairs, in the corner of the music shop. When people ask what I do, I usually say, “this and that”. Which is what it is-teach guitar, work downstairs selling guitars and music, work over at the same fast food place that has paid me weekly (very weakly, as the old joke goes) since I got here to start (and finish, three days later) collegiate life. This, and that. Somebody wanted something, that was for certain."

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Winner, winner, chicken dinner!

As y'all can see from the counter doohickey gadget, I am now an officially minted NaNoWriMo winner. For the first time since I started doing this in 2005, I have started November with nothing and wrote 50,000 words of fiction in, it turns out, 18 days. (All "winning" means is you have written 50000 words, according to the word count robot thing that you copy and paste your story into.)

Yay, me.

All that means for you guys is I may get back to doing more blogging. Whether or not that is good news or not, I will leave as an exercise for the reader.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Katievasion!

Today is blogswap day, cats and kittens, where the paranoid, antisocial ravings of myself are replaced by the smooth jazz stylings of Katie, who is a way better blogger than I am, with 100% more buttplug jokes. If you are so lonely, paranoid, and antisocial that you simply must experience my thoughts for the day, they will be represented at Katie's little corner of Blogistan. Katie blogs here , tweets here , and shops here , should you feel the need to lavish affection upon her.

Katie's brilliance begins here:

Hi to Mr. Mike’s friends. I am Katie. True story.

I was touched in my special places when Mikey Mike asked if I’d like to guest post on his blog. Not many people solicit me for more than sexual favors borrowing money or advice so when he suggested we swap blogs, I was super stoked. Of course I’m no good with topics and stuff so I made him do the hard work. I told him I was legally indecisive and he bought it.

First off, I want to note that I really don’t understand why we call Thanksgiving and Christmas the “holiday season.” There’s probably an explanation. There’s probably a reason. I don’t like it. For the sake of this post, though, I’ll refer to November and December as “Holiday Season.” But I won’t like it. Just sayin’.

With the holidays approaching, I find myself in denial. Each year, I find myself in the same denial. I always think that I shouldn’t buy any presents because the Holiday season (or at least Christmas) is going to be cancelled and I won’t have to have gifts. Then a week or so before the official day of the holiday I realize that I was wrong again, Christmas will go on, and now I have a million presents to buy for people whom I often can’t stand.

It’s not that I don’t like the holidays. I think I’m a fan of most holidays in which it is not only acceptable to get drunk, but expected. Kind of like the unofficial holiday of “Thanksgiving Eve.” I don’t really know how this ritual came to be, but I do know that it’s fantastic, especially because the next day is filled with turkey and the trimmings to chase that hangover away.

Most things about the Holidays I do like. I love all of the food on Thanksgiving. And I like football. I also like the church and Christmas thing – I liked Christmas a lot better when I got all of the presents and thought Santa was real. I also liked it when a pencil with the word “Mom” on it was an acceptable gift and it only cost me .50 cents. I was also a fan of the snow globes which were about $1.00. Now you can’t find a nice snow globe for less than $30.

So, I do like Christmas, I do like Thanksgiving. As for the others?
I don’t like Valentine’s Day.
I do like Halloween.
I don’t like Easter.
I like Christopher Columbus Day.
So all in all, I think I like the Holidays. I don’t like that so much has changed since I was a wee tyke – but at least there is beer to numb the pain, right?


Monday, November 16, 2009

What'd I Say

Still neck deep in NaNo. 40K down, and the end in sight!

Here's a little gem I stumbled upon, the 33 year old Ray Charles performing "What'd I Say".

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Who Is Number One?

Still NaNoWriMoing, and it's actually going very, very well-better than it ever has.

I will be taking a break from 8-9 tonight, because the new Prisoner begins tonight. I'm not a big TV guy, but I have become hooked on ABC's FlashForward, and I think this one may be a second addiction.

The original Prisoner was a psychedelic romp, set in a private mini-city known as The Village. It's one of those shows that makes you do the work-you don't know what anything means at first, and you have to figure it out as you go. (My best friend Shawn actually traveled to Portmeirion in Wales where the original series was shot.) Patrick McGoohan (who I believe I read somewhere turned down the role of James Bond at one point) is Number 6, imprisoned in The Village. The masters will not let him escape until he reveals why he resigned as a secret agent, and he tries various plans and subterfuges to get away. But they never work, and at the end of every episode, he is back in the Village again. (He escapes in the last one, but some fans argue it's an illusion, and he never really gets away.)

The series used to be on PBS a lot, and Shawn got me hooked on it in high school. He taped them all, and we avidly watched them. He even went so far as to subscribe to a fan newsletter and join a fan club. (Needless to say, neither of us were dating a whole lot at the time.) (Or at any time, come to think of it.)

In a phrase that may become familiar to you if you tune in, Be Seeing You.