Wednesday, March 17, 2010

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We Hardly Knew Ye: Alex Chilton

Sad news out of New Orleans today: Alex Chilton died of an apparent heart attack at age 59. Check the obit on Rolling Stone.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Your Attention Please: Quatchi Watch!

On New Year's Day, Eliza and I began our new blog, Quatchi Watch!

Thursday, December 31, 2009

My Favorite Music, Movies & Books of '09!

1. Nirvana, Live at Reading
2. Black Lips, 200 Million Thousand
3. Kiss, Sonic Boom
4. Sonic Youth, The Eternal
5. Reigning Sound, Love and Curses
6. Bruce Springsteen, Working on a Dream
7. Yeah Yeah Yeahs, It's Blitz!
8. Dead Weather, Horehound
9. The King Khan & BBQ Show, Invisible Girl
10. New York Dolls, 'Cause I Sez So
Notes: A live recording of a 17-year-old concert by a long-defunct band shouldn't even qualify for such a list, but I listened to Live at Reading far more than any other CD this year... The reissue of '09 is easily The Beatles Stereo Box Set.

1. The Hurt Locker
2. A Serious Man
3. Inglourious Basterds
4. Star Trek
5. Watchmen
6. Anvil: The Story of Anvil
7. Food, Inc.
8. I Love You, Man
9. It Might Get Loud
10. Up in the Air
Notes: Still haven't seen Big Fan, In the Loop, Sherlock Holmes, and bunches of others. I need to watch more movies...

1. Under Their Thumb by Bill German
2. Bigfoot: The Life and Times of a Legend by Joshua Blu Buhs
3. We'll Be Here for the Rest of Our Lives by Paul Shaffer
4. The Art of Tony Millionaire by Tony Millionaire
5. Inventory by the Writers of the A.V. Club
6. Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition by Alan J. Stein, Paula Becker & the Historylink Staff
Notes: I need to read more books.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

My Honorable Mentions of the '00s!

The Phil Hendrie Show
The New York Times crossword
The A.V. Club
Super Bowl XL
Neil Hamburger
The Washington Nationals

My 25 Favorite Books of the '00s!

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay by Michael Chabon (2000)
Batman Unmasked: Analyzing a Cultural Icon by Will Brooker (2000)
Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth by Chris Ware (2000)
The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen (2001)
Seabiscuit: An American Legend by Laura Hillenbrand (2001)
Our Band Could Be Your Life by Michael Azzerad (2002)
Word Freak by Stefan Fastis (2002)
Blankets by Craig Thompson (2003)
Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game by Michael Lewis (2003)
Under the Banner of Heaven by Jon Krakauer (2003)
The Meaning of Ichiro by Robert Whiting (2004)
Neither Here Nor There by the Melvins (2004)
Freakonomics by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner (2005)
Transit Maps of the World by Mark Ovenden (2005)
TV A-Go-Go by Jake Austen (2005)
Blackstock's Collections by Gregory L. Blackstock (2006)
Vanishing Seattle by Clark Humphrey (2006)
The Replacements: All Over But the Shouting by Jim Walsh (2007)
Spider-Man: The Icon by Steve Saffel (2007)
Watching Baseball Smarter by Zach Hample (2007)
Our Dumb World: The Onion's Atlas of the Planet Earth (2008)
Shortcomings by Adrian Tomine (2008)
The Art of Tony Millionaire by Tony Millionaire (2009)
Bigfoot: The Life and Times of a Legend by Joshua Blu Buhs (2009)
Under Their Thumb by Bill German (2009)

My Nine Favorite Concerts of the '00s!

1. The Dirtbombs/ The Detroit Cobras, Crocodile Cafe, October 4, 2002
2. Young Fresh Fellows/ Girl Trouble/ New Original Sonic Sound, Crocodile Cafe, July 14, 2000
3. The Rolling Stones, Tacoma Dome, November 6, 2002
4. Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band, Key Arena, March 29, 2008
5. The White Stripes/ Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Seahawks Stadium Exhibition Center, September 16, 2003
6. Melvins/ Mudhoney, The Showbox, March 7, 2004
7. Kiss, Key Arena, November 15, 2009
8. Iggy & the Stooges/ Mudhoney, Memorial Stadium, September 5, 2005
9. Bob Dylan, Key Arena, October 13, 2006

My 22 Favorite TV Shows of the '00s!

1. King of the Hill (Fox, 1997-2009)
2. Six Feet Under (HBO, 2001-2005)
3. Mad Men (AMC, 2007-present)
4. The Office (BBC, 2001-2003)
5. Curb Your Enthusiasm (HBO, 2000-present)
6. Reno 911! (Comedy Central, 2003-2009)
7. Aqua Teen Hunger Force (Cartoon Network, 2000-present)
8. Eastbound & Down (HBO, 2009)
9. Flight of the Conchords (HBO, 2007-2009)
10. The Office (NBC, 2005-present)
11. Chappelle's Show (Comedy Central, 2003-2006)
12. Wonder Showzen (MTV2, 2005-2006)
13. Da Ali G Show (HBO, 2003-2004)
14. Big Love (HBO, 2006-present)
15. John Adams (HBO, 2008)
16. Freaks and Geeks (NBC, 1999-2000)
17. Jackass (MTV, 2000-2002)
18. Strangers with Candy (Comedy Central, 1999-2000)
19. Deadwood (HBO, 2004-2006)
20. Saturday Night Live (NBC, 1975-present)
21. The Simpsons (Fox, 1989-present)
22. The Late Show with David Letterman (CBS, 1993-present)

Saturday, December 26, 2009

My 14 Favorite Movies of the '00s!

1. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
2. The Dark Knight (2008)
3. Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004)
4. Best in Show (2000)
5. A Mighty Wind (2003)
6. Adaptation. (2002)
7. American Splendor (2003)
8. Sideways (2004)
9. The Station Agent (2003)
10. Borat (2006)
11. Spider-Man (2002)
12. The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters (2007)
13. Bigger, Faster, Stronger* (2008)
14. Stevie (2002)

My 17 Favorite Albums of the '00s!

1. Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Fever to Tell (2003)
2. Paul Westerberg, Come Feel Me Tremble (2003)
3. Detroit Cobras, Life, Love and Leaving (2001)
4. The Strokes, Is This It (2001)
5. The New Pornographers, Mass Romantic (2000)
6. The Rolling Stones, A Bigger Bang (2005)
7. The Dirtbombs, Ultraglide in Black (2001)
8. Komeda, Kokomemedada (2003)
9. Black Lips, Good Bad Not Evil (2007)
10. Danger Doom, The Mouse and the Mask (2005)
11. Bob Dylan, Modern Times (2006)
12. White Stripes, White Blood Cells (2001)
13. Bruce Springsteen, Magic (2007)
14. Iggy Pop, Skull Ring (2003)
15. Melvins, (A) Senile Animal (2006)
16. The Baseball Project, Vol. 1: Frozen Ropes and Dying Quails (2008)
17. Nirvana, Live at Reading (2009)

My 100 Favorite Songs of the '00s!

Against Me! – Thrash Unreal
Arcade Fire – Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)
Audioslave – Cochise
The Baseball Project – Pastime
Beastie Boys – An Open Letter to NYC
Beck – Girl
Belle and Sebastian – Sukie in the Graveyard
Beyonce – Crazy in Love
Black Lips – Can’t Dance
Boss Hog – Monkey
Caesars – Jerk It Out
Camera Obscura – Lloyd, I’m Ready to Be Heartbroken
Johnny Cash – Heart of Gold
The Chesterfield Kings – Up and Down
Danger Doom – El Chupa Nibre
Dead Moon – It’s a Long Way to the Top
Detroit Cobras – Hey Sailor
Devo 2.0 – Uncontrollable Urge
Dinosaur Jr. – Almost Ready
The Dirtbombs – Chains of Love
The Donnas – Hot Pants
The Dutchess and the Duke – I Am a Ghost
Bob Dylan – Workingman’s Blues #2
The Fall – Sparta 2XX
FannyPack – Cameltoe

Feist – 1234
The Fiery Furnaces – Tropical Ice-Land
Fischerspooner – Mega Colon
The Flaming Lips – Do You Realize??
Fleet Foxes – White Winter Hymnal
Flight of the Conchords – Foux de Fafa
Foo Fighters – All My Life
Girl Trouble – Rockin’ Good Way
Gnarls Barkley – Crazy
Gorillaz – Feel Good, Inc.
Guided by Voices – The Best of Jill Hives
Neil Hamburger – Three Piece Chicken Dinner
The Hives – Hate to Say I Told You So
Hot Hot Heat – Running Out of Time
Iron & Wine – The Devil Never Sleeps
Mick Jagger – God Gave Me Everything
Jay Z – Empire State of Mind (featuring Alicia Keys)
Jon Spencer Blues Explosion – Point of View
The King Khan & BBQ Show – Waddlin’ Around
Kings of Leon – Molly’s Chambers
Kiss – Say Yeah
Komeda – Nonsense
Loretta Lynn – Portland
The Mekons – The Olde Trip to Jerusalem
Melvins – A History of Bad Men

The Minus 5 – Wicked Annabella
Mitch & Mickey – When You’re Next to Me
Modest Mouse – Float On
The Monkeywrench – In the Days of the Five
The Mooney Suzuki – A Little Bit of Love
Mudhoney – I Saw the Light
Neko Case – Star Witness
The New Pornographers – Mass Romantic
The New Strychnines – Psycho
New York Dolls – Runnin’ Around
Nirvana – You Know You’re Right
Pearl Jam – The Fixer
Prince – Fury
Peter Bjorn and John – Young Folks
Pink – Get the Party Started
Pixies – Bam Thwok
PJ Harvey – Good Fortune
Robert Plant & Alison Kraus – Gone Gone Gone (Done Moved On)
Iggy Pop – Little Know It All
The Raconteurs – Steady, As She Goes
Joey Ramone – Maria Baritomo
Reigning Sound – Funny Thing
The Replacements – Message to the Boys
The Rolling Stones – It Won’t Take Long
RTX – Balls to Pass

Santogold – L.E.S. Artistes
The Shins – New Slang
Sleater-Kinney – The Fox
Sonic Youth – Jams Run Free
The Sounds – Rock ‘n Roll
Bruce Springsteen – Waitin’ on a Sunny Day
Stereo Total – Villaines Filles, Mauvaises Garçons
Tommy Stinson – Something’s Wrong
The Strokes – Last Nite
Tenacious D – The Road
The Ting Tings – That’s Not My Name
TV on the Radio – Wolf Like Me
Vitamin C – Vacation
Vivian Girls – Tell the World
The Von Bondies – C’mon C’mon
The Walkmen – The Rat
Ween – Bananas and Blow
Weezer – Hash Pipe
Paul Westerberg – Pine Box
White Stripes – Fell in Love With a Girl
Wilco – Heavy Metal Drummer
Amy Winehouse – Rehab
Wolfmother – Dimension
Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Date With the Night
Young Fresh Fellows – Gotta Get the First Plane Home

Friday, December 25, 2009

Happy Birthday, America!

Eliza got me this bitchin' giraffe ornament.

Trick or treat!!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Now I've Seen Everything #10: Goat Yelling Like a Man

He teams up with Usher here.

I'd like to see him in a skull mask.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Your Attention Please: Tacky Tourist Photos!

My New Englander pal Darren Garnick -- the guy who made the Hell Drivers documentary and had his baby photographed with several 2008 presidential candidates and a bunch other stuff -- has launched a cool new project: Tacky Tourist Photos.

Here's my submission!

Sunday, December 06, 2009

It Was 40 Years Ago Today: Altamont

The Rolling Stones' infamous Altamont Free Concert went down 40 years ago today, December 6, 1969. The sort of "anti-Woodstock" was a violent affair, capped off by the fatal stabbing of 18-year-old Meredith Hunter right in front of the stage, while the oblivious Stones played "Under My Thumb." The Maysles Brothers caught the murder on film in their awesome/ nightmarish documentary Gimme Shelter. Almost prophetically, the Stones released Let It Bleed the previous week. Earlier that year, on July 5, troubled founding member Brian Jones drowned in his swimming pool.

1969 was a big year in boomer history, but also for me -- I was born nine days before Jones' death. It seems that every five years since, all the major events of '69 -- good and bad -- are commemorated. Like me, lots of other stuff hit the four-oh this year: the aforementioned Woodstock, the moon landing, the Beatles playing on the roof of Apple Records, the Jets upsetting the Colts in Super Bowl III, the Miracle Mets wining the World Series, the Manson Family, Stonewall, various events in Vietnam...

Also "Born in '69" (like the Rocket from the Crypt song): Led Zeppelin, the 747, Sesame Street, Monty Python, Ken Griffey Jr., the Seattle Pilots (now the Milwaukee Brewers), the Montreal Expos (now the Washington Nationals), the Kansas City Royals, and the San Diego Padres...

Some believe life begins at 40, others believe life begins at conception. Personally, I believe that life begins at 6.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Now I've Seen Everything #9: The UroClub

Buy it here.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Evel Knievel: Still Dead

Not much to report today, the second anniversary of Evel's death. But this odd old ad has been making the internet rounds, so I might as well post it too.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Happy 60th, Paul!

Paul Shaffer hits the big six-oh today.

I dug his recent autobiography We'll Be Here for the Rest of Our Lives, detailing his amazing career as Saturday Night Live's musical director during the show's 1970s glory years before teaming up with Letterman in 1982, a partnership now in its 28th season. Along the way he's recorded and/or performed with nearly every major act of the rock 'n' era -- Dylan, Springsteen, the Beach Boys, various Beatles and Stones and Zeppelins, etc.

He also played Artie Fufkin:

Friday, November 20, 2009

Happy 67th, Super!

Super Dave Osborne hits the big six-seven today. Here he is with his announcer Mike Walden and stunt coordinator Fuji Hakayito.

Hard to believe Super's still alive, what with all those stupid, bone-crushing stunts we've seen on the Super Dave variety show, the Super Dave: Daredevil for Hire cartoon series, a couple Super Dave TV specials, and the direct-to-video vehicle The Extreme Adventures of Super Dave. And he shows no signs of slowing down, as demonstrated on his current series, Super Dave's Spike-Tacular.

Here's the "Greatest Entertainer Daredevil Superstar of All Time" reading to David Letterman from his book Super Dave's Doggie Goodnights.

And here's some kid in a Super Dave Halloween costume.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Seattle Rock City

I finally got to see Kiss last night -- it was nuts. I might write more about it later, but for now here's a photo that I took, two videos that someone else took, and a set list:

1. Deuce
2. Strutter
3. Let Me Go, Rock 'n' Roll
4. Hotter Than Hell (Gene breathed fire)
5. Shock Me
6. Calling Dr. Love
7. Modern Day Delilah (one of two new songs they played)
8. Cold Gin (Ace Tommy shot sparks from his guitar)
9. Do You Love Me
10. Say Yeah (the other new song they played)
11. 100,000 Years (Peter Eric drum solo)
12. I Love It Loud (Gene puked blood; sang from atop the rigging)
13. Black Diamond
14. Rock And Roll All Nite (end of main set)
15. Shout It Out Loud (first song of encore)
16. Lick It Up
17. Love Gun (Paul flew across the arena on a zipwire)
18. Detroit Rock City

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Welcome Back Again!

Griffey will play another season with the M's next year.

His 2009 production wasn't so hot, and I suspect next year will be even worse. It's sad when a slowed-down, overweight superstar doesn't know when to call it quits, stumbling along while vainly trying to recapture their glorious youth. But with the fun-loving Griffey, it should be cool having him back anyway, hopefully with more scenes like the one above (from last year's final home game).

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

They Like to Lit-ter

This PSA represents my personal Holy Grail of long-lost video detritus, which I finally found today on YouTube.

As a kid I always saw this spot on Saturday morning TV and wanted to see it again, but my fruitless Internet searches over the years left me stymied. But it's just as I remembered -- almost. For whatever hazy reason, I mistakenly recalled the critters being Krofft-like monsters, and the bear delivering his "We like to lit-ter" line while holding up a fish skeleton and looking something like Mortiis. But I do remember the kids' Frankenstein T-shirt, and most of the dialogue ("You guys shouldn't be dumping garbage!"... "Let's get him!"), and that he somehow escaped the monster animal attack because he's seen relaxing on the hillside at the end.

After watching it again today, it turns out to have been a local spot for the Pacific Northwest region of the National Park Service -- I always figured it was part of a national anti-littering campaign. It could also be read as an anti-animal rock band campaign, but if there really were such sights up at Rainier, I'd probably visit more often.

Hey -- at the very beginning of the clip, isn't that a young Connie Thompson?

Monday, September 28, 2009

Super Quatchi Crazy!

Just got back from another of our once-a-year-or-so trips to Canada. We drove up on Friday night and shopped at Daiso, then stayed at the nearby Vancouver airport Sandman (largely 'cause it's right across the street from Tim Horton's). Then Saturday we attended a small community festival in suburban Langley so we could finally meet Quatchi -- there'll be lots more about him in future blog action, but here's a picture for now.

I still wasn't able to find just the right Canucks T-shirt at either the team shop nor at any thrift stores, but I did score a cool Canucks book at Value Village. (Two things I always see in B.C. thrift shops: Don Cherry's Rock'em Sock'em Hockey videos, and this Expo 86 coffee table book.)

Our Vancouver time was limited though, 'cause the main reason for our trip was to visit Whistler, where neither of us had been before. Besides taking in the gorgeous mountain scenery (best viewed from the new Peak 2 Peak Gondola), it seems we spent most of our time in sushi restaurants and souvenir shops.

We basically wanted to buy everything bearing Quatchi's face, but we settled for a Quatchi fridge magnet, a Quatchi T-shirt, a Quatchi book, and Quatchi stamps to affix to our Quatchi postcards. To keep our original 13.5" Quatchi company, we also took home a 4.5" Quatchi and a 8.5" Quatchi. The monster 38" Quatchi wasn't for us, but we enjoyed posing with one of 'em for these photos.

Next time we gotta rent some bikes, and in Vancouver, we still need to eat at Japa Dog, go to a Canucks game, visit Point Roberts and ride the BC Ferries. Why? 'Cause Vancouver is awesome.

A zillion thanks, Marg & Tom!!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Ivar's Submarine Billboards

The supposed Ivar's billboards at the bottom of Puget Sound appear to be legit -- check out the videos.

This sort of goofy local lore sounds too awesome to be true, but it apparently is. They say the seven billboards, installed on the sea bed in 1955 and salvaged over the summer, will soon be on display around town. I can't wait.

I love Ivar's, both for the seafood as well as for its status as a Seattle institution -- since 1938! I enjoy me an occasional Ivar Dog at Mariners games, and it's no accident we had our wedding rehearsal dinner last spring at the kitschy-cool Ivar's Salmon House (with its Whalemaker Lounge). Unfortunately, I've lately had certain, um, "issues" with fish 'n' chips -- I hope it's a temporary thing.

Keep clam.

Newer Flickr Sets!

Now you can see my collection of Mariners pocket schedules, Seahawks pocket schedules, and some other stuff.