Monday, July 28, 2008

What's on your iPod? Part 2

It was so fun the first time that I'm doing it again...and I learned about some of you. Hidden depths, people, hidden depths.

Also, I'm procrastinating.

First 20 in random shuffle:

* Outkast, Dracula's Wedding: I love Outkast. I like to sing along when I'm alone in the car, but most of the songs are not singalongs for children and it's really hard to stop singing when Outkast is on.

* Bob Marley & the Wailers, Work: This makes me think of working at Glimmerglass Opera and staying in scary housing with a ghost cat who left fresh pee markings every time I left the creepy old house. Oh, and it was across the street from a graveyard.

* Parliament, Chocolate City: When I was in 6th grade, we moved from NYC to Denver. I got invited to my first party with dancing. I could not dance. Parliament was playing (the song was Flashlight). I was mortified. Shudder...

* David Bowie, Try Some, Buy Some: Let me count the ways...

* Pat Benatar, Hit Me with your Best Shot: Here's my big embarrassment for the day! And you thought it would be that I couldn't dance in 6th grade. Silly you! I like to sing along with this one, too. There. I have no pride left.

* Mos Def, Ms. Fat Booty: Not sure if I've even actually listened to this. Why, oh why couldn't something familiar and cool -- like Psapp or Phospherescent or Big Star...even Spacehog -- come next?

* Billy Bragg, A New England: I used to frequent a great show venue in Denver in the early-mid '80s -- the Rainbow Room (like my youth, long since dead). I saw fantastic shows there (Halloween night with the Cure and Siouxsee & the Banshees opening, front row for Psychedelic Furs and Richard Butler singing Pretty in Pink to me -- I was wearing a bright pink '50s cocktail dress with rhinestones, many early REM shows...) Billy Bragg opened for somebody (a band that obviously made a big, big impression). A lot of us would wait out all day for these shows, and Billy Bragg came out and played a one-man band contraption for the crowd waiting to get in. Amazing. And he gets extra points for his work on Mermaid Avenue.

* The Clash, The Prisoner: Also in Denver, I got to see The Clash at Red Rocks on the Combat Rock tour. I tried to sleep in the next day. Unfortunately, I was on the cover of the Rocky Mountain News Sunday edition and many of my parents' friends felt the need to call. I'm embarrassed to say that I had a total Molly Ringwald getup on. I was in the front row, though.

* Radiohead, Optimistic: We have tried to see Radiohead what...four times now? Tibetan Freedom Festival (stopped mid-show due to lightning striking a girl across the field during Herbie Hancock & the Headhunters' reunion performance of Watermelon Man; a 9:30 club midnight show announced at the last minute -- we happened to be in front of the club but had to go get someone at the airport; a field that flooded; and a near miss at Merriweather a few years ago -- what band starts on time? We were stuck in a long line of traffic waiting to get in...made it for the encore). I've given up on ever seeing more than 30 minutes of Radiohead live. Didn't even try this year. Charles thinks he spent time in a pub with some/all of them at Oxford. Call me crazy, but I have a feeling that there are a lot of pale, pasty shoe-gazing intellectual teenagers there.

* The Beatles, Thank You Girl: Yeah, yeah. I know. There's a whole lot of Beatles on my iPod. Actually, I really thought Wilco would be the winner. I may have to rethink my allegiances.

* Neil Young, I Believe in You: When we lived in San Francisco (Haight & Stanyan), Neil Young and Pearl Jam played a free show in Golden Gate Park. It was so loud. I was so annoyed. I was a music school snob. I am an idiot. The Grateful Dead also played a show in the park that you could hear from the Conservatory (19th & Ortega). I may not have been the right person to be living in San Francisco in the late '80s/early '90s...

* The Jam, The Place I Love: Loved the Jam, liked Style Council. Not so big on Paul Weller solo...

* Paul Westerberg, Something Is Me: I swear, he could breathe and I would love it. And listen to it over and over. And be oh so grateful. I am so easy to please.

* Blondie, X Offender: Do you remember when Debbie Harry was a guest on The Muppets? I do. We watched that show every Sunday night. I still can't really figure out how CBGB spawned such a wide variety of acts...

* David Bowie, Queen Bitch: Don't you feel just a little tough but glamorous when you listen to Bowie? My best friend in 7th grade and I certainly did. I still do.

* Chaka Demus, Twist and Shout: Ska, ska, ska.

* Echo & the Bunnymen, Rescue: I can still smell the aquanet. By the way, do you remember the old aquanet can? Long ago, it used to have a wavy top. My dad designed that can. I tried to find a picture on google, but no luck. But I did learn that you can make fairy dust using dried hairspray. So that 15 minutes wasn't a total loss.

* Skankin' Pickle, Turning Japanese: High school. A long trip on the bus from Denver to Muncie, Indiana for the International Thespian Conference. A lot of dramatic teenagers and one teacher. What in the world were our parents thinking? I did meet a great guy there -- Jim from Grosse Ile, Michigan. Jim actually came to visit me in Colorado. For some reason, I couldn't come out of my room that week, and poor Jim spent his whole trip with my mom in the living room. I am so sorry, Jim from Michigan. And Mom, too. I'm really sorry.

* Loose Fur, Carnival Knowledge: Charles tells me that the only reason that Autumn Defense is on my iPod is because of Wilco. I'll have to admit that I never would have picked it up without the Wilco cred. But I do like it. He says you can just imagine the sweaters and Ovaltine (note that he doesn't say "tea"). And poetry books and mumbling. I really like Loose Fur. They sound like the bar band you wish you'd tumble upon in a seedy bar on a winter's night. Glowing review, eh?

* The Who, I've Had Enough (from the Quadrophenia soundtrack) There used to be a theater on Colfax in Denver that did the midnight showing of Rocky Horror Picture Show (more nights that I care to admit...) For a time, they also did Sunday afternoon Quadrophenia showings. Denver in the early to mid-80s wasn't all bad...

So, what's on your iPod? And no skipping!

A Tale of Summertime Woe

If you have a school-age child, you may be spending part of your summer getting your kid to do workbooks in preparation for the coming year. Or, if your school-age child is like mine, you may be spending your summer in a circle of useless, endless negotiation about the aforementioned workbooks. You may be hearing a lot about what summer is supposed to be, and how you're "ruining my life" and how they "really hadn't put work in the plan for today." Sound familiar? If not, I envy you. Oh, how I envy you.

Until today, that is. This morning, MasterP (pretty much) voluntarily did his work without (too much) complaining. I was as surprised as you! He even asked me to take pictures so that we could remember this day. There were some conversational gems...

Working on sight-recognition words (the text was a little smudged so he missed one or two that he normally would get):
"Not quite. It's 'could'."
"Oh yeah. 'Could.' That's a classic."

The conversation after he finished:
"Mom? Mom, would you say this was the best I ever did workbooks, an average time or worse than usual?"
"Hmmm. Well, it was pretty good."
"Mom. I really need to know your full answer here."

What do you suppose he has up his sleeve? A survey?

I pushed my luck, though. I offered him a bribe -- I mean incentive -- to complete additional pages each day. He ran (and I can hear the lovely strains of Lego xBox now). I knew I was going too far.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Technically, right now I really should be working...

but instead I am going to let you in on the highlights of the weekend, because otherwise it'll never happen. My procrastination skills seem to be at their apex this weekend...
Because P&M were good all morning (and I was busy and I'm a big treater) I took P&M through the McD's drive-through. I was told by the elderly man working the window that I "could make a man stop watching football". P&M have been repeating and giggling ever since. I'll have to remember that in the fall ... or maybe not, since I do not actually have that power in our household.

I took pictures at the Cheverly Community Market's Potluck, which was really charming. About 70 people came out and, though I didn't get a chance to eat, everything smelled and looked fantastic. Can't wait for another one!

We made it out to Target (for a cooler so that we don't borrow E&K's cooler for a second year), Clagett Farm (for our -- I have to say -- pretty teeny share) and Landover Liquor (thank you for stocking Sofia -- it's been a source of slow mornings more than once for several Cheverly mommies who shall go know who you are.) That was all a leadup to Soul Revolver's performance at the Surf Club. Fun night -- Ladies' Night was originally scheduled, but got pushed back (the band was only supposed to play 7:00-9:00) in favor of a second set by Kelly, the Brians and Charles...and a very special two-man finale around 11:00. There was lots of dancing (I'm sure I'll regret that...) and some people were rather surprised at how much dancing and drinking the parents were able to do...not sure if those people were impressed or horrified. Oh, you'll see when you're parents. I hope the band gets to play there again very soon! After finding my glasses (under a table, sorta wrecked), we had an after-party of sorts back at the house until 1:30am. Thank you, babysitters of Cheverly. You do important, meaningful work and your service to your town and the parents therein is valued. I salute you.

Things are a little slow and sleepy around here today...can't imagine why. I think we need a week to recover from our weekend.

I really do have to work now. Pfeh.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

What are you doing Saturday night?

I know where I'll be.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

What's on your iPod?

If you are in shuffle mode, what are the first twenty songs that come up on your iPod? And no skipping past the embarrassing stuff. (My comments aren't necessarily about the song that comes up, so don't email me to inform me that I'm referencing the wrong album/period/whatever. I already know that you're very smart. And stop pushing your glasses up on the bridge of your nose that way.)

* The Specials, Rat Race: In high school I loved LOVED The Specials, then Fun Boy Three. It was really Terry Hall.
* The Beatles, Your Mother Should Know: C'mon. If you know me, you know that the Beatles have like a 98% chance of appearing in random shuffle (even with 4,465 songs currently loaded.)
* The Roots, Sacrifice: Charles gave me this album when it came out. I really want to listen to it, but most of it isn't exactly appropriate for the seven and under set, so I usually have to fast forward.
* Bob Dylan, Can't Wait: Okay, I admit it. I really didn't "get" Dylan until a few years ago. Then I was driving alone one day and his lyrics just smacked me in the brain. I had to pull over, close my eyes and listen to the whole song. Twice.
* Cheap Trick, If You Want My Love: Charles has wooed me more than once by singing Cheap Trick songs. Also, even though they're old (well, older than me) they're still cool and they still rock.
* The Beatles, Revolution: See above.
* Elvis Costello, So Like Candy: High school. I really should go back and thank my friends' older siblings for turning me on to some cool stuff.
* The Police, Demolition Man: You know what I hate? Sting. But man, can that guy sing.
* Outkast, My Favorite Things: Paul & Maggie know more Outkast songs than they probably should. This, however, makes me think of Paul McCartney singing Till There Was You. I bet he got lots of girls on that one.
* The Talking Heads, The Overload: "Stop Making Sense". Best movie date. Ever.
* Gary Numan, Cars: God, I hate iTunes. It allows you to buy old crap you shouldn't have enjoyed so much in the first place. This was Paul's favorite song for a time (it's currently Nowhere Man).
* Billy Bragg & Wilco, Another Man's Done Gone: Frankly, I'm surprised that this is Wilco's first entry on this shuffle. For the amount that I actually listen to Wilco, they should be about every other song here.
* David Bowie, Please Mr. Gravedigger: I'm a great fan of Bowie's later work. He just keeps getting better and better.
* Paul Simon, Kodachrome: Gets stuck in my head for days.
* Sonic Youth, JC: Thurston Moore.
* The Cure, Lullaby: They were -- for a time -- my favorite band. Now it feels like reading the diary of a fourteen-year old.
* U2, All Because of You: I dunno. I hate to admit it, but I'm pretty lukewarm on U2.
* Red Hot Chili Peppers, Nobody Weird Like Me: "Mother's Milk"-era Peppers remind me of moving back to San Francisco when I was 21.
* Violent Femmes, Confessions: Charles and I have very different views of the Femmes, in that I love them. He does not.
* Led Zeppelin, Heartbreaker: For some reason, the string dudes at the conservatory really, really loved Led Zeppelin. Watching cellists and violists try to be cool is funny.
* The Replacements, Nightclub Jitters: Another thank you to the big brothers and sisters in high school.
* Psychedelic Furs, Sister Europe: I love Richard Butler's voice.

(Okay that was 22. The next thing that popped up was Siouxsee & the Banshees, Hong Kong Garden.)

So...what's on your iPod?

Sunday, July 20, 2008

What do princesses do when it's 95 degrees and a code red day?

I have absolutely nothing to add.