Facebook Post: 2020-04-30T18:20:14

When I knew that my job was secure, and I didn’t have to leverage my PayPal money in some other way, I started to think about all the people I know who I enjoy the art they make, and how hard things are for them right now. So, I decided to drop some money on a number of people I know, in the hopes that I could time a number of these purchases to arrive roughly around… today. Here are the fruits of my labors.

As you can see, there are selections from Dylan Houser, Bongo Mindhole, Max Eastman, Hal McGee, Chris Phinney, Che F. Kirk, Stephen Doyle and Chris Gierig. Not included are a few purchases that are still pending: three 7” records I just bought from Paul Petroskey, a tape and piece of art from Aimee Grace Naworal & Adam Naworal, and a set of four cassette re-issues I also just bought from Max. (Also not seem: a sweet JUICE MACHINE shirt!)

I’ve also included a photo of all the recent correspondence I’ve gotten (from too many folks to name!) from my letter writing project, and a couple of the ‘zines I’ve gotten, too. (Thanks Marina Oestre and Jonas Juuso!) I also included a couple ’zines that Dylan sent me a while back, and sort of slipped through the cracks in my reading schedule, and one zine I bought from Obadiah Baird and forgot to read, because I feel like now is the time to read things I forgot I had.

This truly is a bounty of excellent gifts, that I’ve been enjoying as I dip my toes in today. This didn’t really cost me much outside of postage and a little cash for each person, and I have so much to read, listen to, and enjoy… all offline.

One thing that I feel that — both my birthday and this isolation — has taught me, is that there is so much life offline, and so much of it exists in ways that you cannot replicate online. The act of putting on these tapes has no equivalent on social media. Having to find a 3.5” floppy drive so I could retrieve the song on it was a small adventure that was pretty entertaining, and caused a few of us to cooperate, offline. Having “Lightbulb” show up on my porch was such a delight. And all of these experiences are not summarized in a post, or something I shared online. Even these photos are lacking in what these material items are offering me today, and in a way, that’s sort of the point.

I can’t spend time with my friends right now, and it very much sucks. Not just for me, but for the world. But I can spend time with their art, and that rules.

Thanks everyone, for being in my life, for making cool things that I love, and for continuing to work, in adversity, to create for those of us who keep searching for meaning and beauty in places that are not often easy to find, or are not immediately obvious.

You all are excellent. I love you all so much.

Now: let’s have a drink!

Facebook Post: 2020-04-30T10:08:33

My Dream:

I discover that a lot more people than I originally knew used to have radio shows. And all of them have shoe-boxes of tapes of these old shows, that they would love to listen to again. So I begin digitizing them, and I start building a catalog of forgotten and lost radio shows, by all the bit-players in the long and sorted story of radio history. Every show that was only a few weeks long, or ones that ran for years. All but forgotten, by only the host and a few fans.

The archive allows people to reconnect with shows they loved, years ago.

We heal as a people, slowly, through music.

Usually to the Sonics, very loud.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-30T02:04:22

I’ve never owned a Prince album, and I never saw “Purple Rain.” I spent all of 1999 intentionally avoiding any Prince songs, specifically, ahem, That One…

I don’t know anything about him, save that he’s not a bad guitar player. And maybe he wasn’t the nicest guy.

Sell me on Prince albums. I think I might have missed the boat, and I’m wondering what I’m missing.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-29T12:20:19

In spite of getting this new job, it’s my birthday tomorrow, so I’m actually on vacation! (Try explaining THAT to the boss.) So today, on KLFM.org, you will hear the finest in Tiki and Vacation tunes, to help you get in the vacation spirit. Kick back in the yard, with a cocktail, a kiddie pool to dip your toes in, and plenty of oldschool tiki records for you to enjoy. It all starts at 3 PM, PST!

Facebook Post: 2020-04-29T05:06:29

Cheerful NPR Story: In two weeks (the last two weeks of March), our country went from being, “as robust as it has ever been, if not moreso,” to, “we are in the biggest recession since the 30s.” Those two weeks reversed all the growth we’d made at the beginning of the year, and brought us down further than the 2008 crash.

That’s just the first quarter of this year. Looking at the overall trend for the second quarter of the year, we are looking at being in the worse depression this country has ever seen. And, given the age of our country, that only means it’s the worst depression in the last few hundred years…

Regardless… the third quarter of this year will coincide with the fall re-outbreak. So I think we know how this story plays out.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-26T19:22:30

I’m reminded of a time in the early 2000s, just after I got my first CD burner, when my musical way of life jumped from making tapes to making CDs. On one side, my life was like, “well, I can only buy so much, I can only tape in real time so much, and I can only borrow so much from the library, that I’m just going to enjoy as much as I can, when I can.” That era of my life was marked by knowing almost every album I owned, and being able to listen to all of my albums over the course of a month, copied albums included. I took my music seriously, and I loved what I loved furiously, but only a few albums at a time.

On the other side of that divide my life changed dramatically. I was simultaneously immersed in a new city (PDX) with more access to buying and getting more music, and I had access to Audiogalaxy while I could borrow and burn CDs in large quantities, very quickly. On the other side of that divide, I became the kind of person dominated by the single notion: “Holy cow, I am rapidly acquiring so much music that I can’t keep up with listening to it all.”

I think I lived in that mentality until sometime around 2010, when I could no longer keep up with my own habit of copying albums and burning discs. I still have large numbers of mp3s I’ve never listened to, and spindles of discs I’ve never put on again. It was probably around then that I also started to realize that I could find almost anything of any kind anywhere online fairly quickly, and suddenly, copying music seemed to matter less and less.

As a test, the first three albums I could think of off the top of my head that I don’t own a real copy of, that were easily found online, for free, on a number of streaming services. (The first Ramones album, the first Pavement album, and the first Metallica album.) I think that’s telling. Even 10 years ago that wasn’t true. I try to put myself in the mind of 20 years ago, when I was making hard choices at the record store over albums that are easily found for free online, now. I look at shelves of CDs that I spent at least $10 a pop for, and all of them are now free to hear, all over the internet.

Perhaps this is why I’m so much more interested in DIY releases and indie artists now? It’s all the guilt I have over the tons of money I’ve pumped into big bands over the years?

Facebook Post: 2020-04-25T07:05:34

If I had the money, I would hire some people to re-work Luchador masks so they are more likely to prevent spread, and I would launch a series of Santo Movie re-makes, suited for our current times and woes.

The central premise of each film would a variation on this same basic idea: the wrestlers are all doing their best to practice social distancing, but there are still some that insist on squaring off to solve problems, as they know no other way of life. The tension of the film will be the good guy wrestlers staying home, while the bad-guy wrestlers are still holding matches, spreading the illness.

Finally, the good-guy wrestlers can no longer take it, they fly over the matches with hot-air balloons, use megaphones to shame the bad guys to go home, and save the day by dispersing the crowds. There will be a climax where the bad guy tries to out-shout the good guy, but after a verbal stand off where the good guy just talks in a slow, measured voice, the bad guy gives up, and goes home. In the end, reason and logic will will the day.

It’s a total fantasy film, not at all reflective of what would really happen in our world. But I think it’s the movie series we need.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-25T06:35:51

Today, at 1 PM PST (10 PM their time), tune in to WDR 3 radio in Germany, to hear a new radio piece by People Like Us (Vicki Bennett). “I Can Fly” was made for this program, and features the voices of a number of people who you may know. Vicki’s work is certainly collage based, but is so much more immersive, and takes those ideas into places that you never knew they could go. Her program on WFMU – “Do Or DIY” – has been exploring this audio art space for years, as has her own work going back to the early ’90’s. I’m really excited, not only to hear something that has been in the works for quite some time, but to have had a very small role as one of the voices in the mix.

But this really is a cavalcade of cameos from a number of people who work in radio, music, art and all sorts of extremes of culture. So if you recognize even a few of the names on this list, it’ll help paint a picture of what you can expect today. The last pieces that I was involved with aired on some strand of BBC radio, and was such a delight to hear what she had done with the words we said. I can only imagine how delightful this one will be.

Tune in to hear snippets, samples, and snatches of people talking about flying, including: Akāshamitra, Atau Tanaka, Ariadne, Austin Rich, Beth Arzy, Cameron Hamilton, Casper Carey, Cecilia Hae-Jin Lee, Dan Otto Bodah, David Cox, Drew Daniel, Eric Kilkenny, Falco Carey, Gaylord Fields, Hearty White, Henry Jhh Löwengard, Iain Chambers, Jeff Carey, Jem Finer, Katja Seltmann, Irene Moon, Kevin Hamilton, Kim Farrier, Kira O’Reilly, Leanne Bryan, Leech Ernowetz, Leon Clowes, Mark Gergis, Mark Heath, Mark Leahy, Melissa Healing, Michael Newman, Molly Hankwitz, Nicola Battista, Peter Jaeger, Peter Knight, Rahne Alexander, Richard Lindsay, Robert Worby, Runa Kirby Torbo, Seth Horvitz, Sharon Gal, Simon Faulkner, Simon Hamilton, Steven Ball, Tim Maloney, Tom Comitta, Vicki Bennett, Will Gustav Thomas Edmondes and Yvonne Szymczak!

And… who knows what else!

Facebook Post: 2020-04-24T08:25:14

I’ve been making a list of “dream supplies” that I should keep around my office, to take “working from home” seriously. While this isn’t my first rodeo (it’s at least my second), in the past, I’ve had a lot of fairly “laid-back” work from home situations, where I could sort of work when I want, deadlines were fluid, and in the end, it was never really taken seriously. With this new gig, there will be meetings I have to attend, notes I’ll have to take, phone / skype interviews that I’ll need to record / get transcribed, and then, I’ll actually have to produce text at some point, too.

I’ve already gotten the desk dialed in, where I can work sitting or standing, have the “happy lamp” and the coffee warmer around, and I can have music, podcasts, or silence running, as needed. And while I don’t really “need” anything to actually write, the more I think about it, the more I think I might have to do more “office” type work, and inevitably, stuff that I think of as just “being around” when I’m in “work mode” might not actually be around the house.

My question, for those who work from home a lot: What are the things that you ended up needing to have around your office in order to work more efficiently? Software? Hardware? Pre-digital style tools? I have had so many office jobs, and every time, the office is usually fully stocked. I could see myself getting up to search for something, and realizing that I don’t have it anywhere around.

What do you need to have around to work best at home?

Facebook Post: 2020-04-24T07:30:36

Yesterday was a weird, wild emotional ride, as I was wrestling with the various aspects of privilege and strangeness that our lives currently inhabit. It feels bizarre to even think about my birthday at all, given that the entire world sort of had their birthday taken away from them this year, even if we can order crap we don’t need from some local store, in an effort to pretend that things are somewhat “normal.”

And then, to get two different job offers, work that is not only something I can do, but is in my specific creative field, feels very surreal. (And in both cases: to be contacted and courted for that specific reason… how?) It feels like THE definition of privilege. I’ve gotten freelance writing gigs before, and even ones that paid. And yet, never before did I get one where I’m on the payroll, and can get paid for “creative brainstorming” hours, that I get to do at home. (How far I’m going to push the definition of “creative brainstorming” probably depends on what further distractions I can find around the house, I suppose.)

All of this seems too good to be true, especially contrasted against how miserable I have been in recent months, and how miserable EVERYONE has been in the last several weeks. Why me? Why anyone? How did this happen? Random chance, clearly, and yet, how is it that I can actually benefit from some random flukes, all kicked off because the world at large has to deal with this fucked-up virus?

The gloom and rain this morning seems to reflect the burbling mood that is just beneath all of this good news. As I read more about how schools are prepared to go entirely virtual in the fall, how enrollment numbers are at an epic low, that private institutions will probably start to have to close soon, it seems insane to think that the focus on my education is specifically being recruited for these two gigs that came my way.

There’s a deep irony at work, and it makes me want to cry / laugh a little too often this morning.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-24T06:13:19

Wait, it was a joke song… right? Not actual medical advice…

“Don’t you wanna hang out with the bleach boys baby?
In a land where ministers murder golf pros?
Don’t you wanna drink some bleach tonight?

Maybe there’ll be a party at the beach?
We’ll bitch about life and chug-a-lug bleach!
No ones getting high and no one’s getting drunk,
We got a case off bleach stashed in the trunk.
I wanna die with clorox within reach.”

Facebook Post: 2020-04-23T16:43:18

More Good Luck? It seems unlikely, given our current climate. But regardless, an old client — who I’ve done some work for in the past (and, when all was said and done, I made out pretty good, considering the work / pay ratio) — contacted me with an offer for more work-from-home commissions! It’s nice to get hit-up for creative and creative-adjacent jobs that actually pay money in some form, and I was very happy to sign that contract, quickly.

Every once in a while, doing exactly what I want, when I want, under my own terms, actually pays off.

And not just metaphorically!

Facebook Post: 2020-04-23T05:30:49

Hot take: the time, money, and energy that is put into national sports organizations could be better used to finance local franchises and small youth teams that would inject that nationally spent money into the local economy, making it possible for people who maybe never cared about – or never wanted to support – sportsball, to finally give a shit.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-22T20:35:56

Neglected LPs Project:

I don’t know The Rolling Stones. I was a Who fan, personally. But I listen to the radio and I watch movies and TV, so I know their albums pretty well, it turns out. And I have an astonishing number of Stones records, for some reason. So this collection seemed pretty good to pop on.

I clearly have never listened to this record; disc one has a huge “bend” that prevents the first song from being playable. But the rest plays fine, and it’s not a bad collection. Maybe I’ll check out more Stones records? Who knows…

Facebook Post: 2020-04-22T08:47:00

I got panicked, and so I decided to check, and yes, I’m registered to vote at my current address as a democrat, and a ballot will be sent out to my house the day before my birthday. (Which means I’ll probably be able to vote in the primary for my birthday, which is pretty sweet.)

If you are similarly concerned, and want to make sure you are registered at your current address, here’s the link. I can’t imagine an election where this might matter more.


I will say: this is not my preferred political party. Until fairly recently, I have been registered “Cathead” Party, which comes back on my card something along the lines of, “Anonymous – Third Party,” or something like that. The Cathead Party philosophy is pretty straightforward: vote your heart, or “Doug D. Douglas” if you can’t do that. Doug D. Douglas has been the Cathead Party candidate for every position in every election since the early ’90’s, but sometimes voting third party doesn’t make sense, so in that case… vote your heart.

However, Marla and I had a conversation a while back, and we both switched to the democrat party, for the purposes of voting. I don’t really identify as democrat, and I’m not sure I ever did or will. But It’s the closest thing to matching my philosophy, and in large elections, voting for the democrat is usually the better vote to cast.

As we were coming into the 2012 election, we decided that having a voice in the primaries made sense, something the Cathead Party doesn’t do. (They just always run good old Doug, every time, no matter what.) So, as Cathead doesn’t really need my vote in the primaries, Marla and I registered democrat, so we could have an influence there.

It’s hard to say comfortably out loud, “I’m a Democrat,” with any amount of pride. It fits like a bad suit, tailored for someone else. But in this upcoming election, it seems important to cast two very symbolic votes: in both cases, I will be voting for the democrat I like the most.

I just wish it was the same one both times.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-21T17:19:53

One thing I think I could get into: Job Interviews over *Skype. I look and sound my best when I can control it in a screen like that, and I can control what you see behind me too, so I really look immaculate, and you have no idea how slap-dash it all was seconds before and after I take / hang up the call.

I’m in! This fits my lifestyle PERFECTLY.

* Skype had become the official “eponym” for “video call” for the longest time; no matter what kind of call it actually was, most people would just say “Skype” up until a month or so ago. I’m starting to think that “Zoom” will begin to replace that. (Similar to the way “Nintendo” meant “home video game” for years, until “XBox” sort of supplanted it for a while.)

Facebook Post: 2020-04-21T08:52:26

I just listened to a great podcast episode by “Roderick On The Line,” discussing the differences in behavior between Introverts and Extroverts, with regards to our current isolation. The essential premise was that the kinds of people who are protesting to re-open the country are extroverts, while the people who are very easily (and happily) sheltering in place are patiently waiting out the worst things, and have plenty to do at home while they wait.

I suspect there’s some truth to that idea Extroverts do like going out, like socializing, are the first to organizing a gathering and want to get the whole group together for drinks afterwards. And I suspect that those who are enjoying the comforts of home, who are enjoying learning how to bake, and who are enjoying streaming movies and reading a lot, are perfectly happy for things to go on like this for a long, long time.

To a degree, the world has been run by extroverts for a long time. Business owners who are “go-getters,” politicians who are, “willing to shake hands and get things done,” and entertainers who are really good at getting groups of people to gather in one place, very near each other… these are the kinds of people who hold a tremendous amount of “Capital” in shaping the way our world works. The rise of the introvert has been happening since the Inter-Web-A-Tron allowed us all to communicate and connect outside of the mainstream, but even that re-balancing of life just made certain kinds of introverts into extroverts. (Podcasters who can suddenly fill mid-sized night-clubs; bloggers who can suddenly get book deals and have to put on reading for large groups.)

The way our lives worked (until recently) were still arranged by the lifestyles of extroverts. Going to the office. Socializing downtown with dinner and a show. Going to large tourist destinations for your vacation. Big entertainment conventions and public gatherings for fans. And while introverts were always able to find a place for themselves in the pecking order, their influence on the way the world worked was often done behind the scenes, away from the prying eyes of partygoers or large groups.

So, now we are facing a pandemic where isolation is the way we beat this. And, to make it through social distancing, we need to engage in SOME amount of self-reflection, to prevent ourselves from REALLY going bananas. What group of people are ideally suited for handling this kind of situation? And: what group of people are pacing, impatiently, looking out the window, ready to go back to “normal” the moment they are allowed to?

The way this virus is spread favors transmission through extroverts, regardless of how “one little gathering” or “having a friend over doesn’t count” might seem to favor survival, if you look at the numbers. If all extroverts engage in “one little gathering,” then it’s the same as “re-opening” the country, without officially doing so. Meanwhile, introverts are dreading the idea that, before we are ready, we will all be asked to go back to work, and to the way things used to be.

With those who are protesting today, here in Oregon, to “re-open,” it seems clear (to the introverts I know) that waiting this out IS the only way to approach this situation. And, meanwhile, aren’t we excited for finally listen to those records we never get to hear?

The dark reality of this situation is that, if things play out the way so much science is suggesting, and if the protests to “get back to normal” continues, the introverts will, finally, have an opportunity to re-shape the way our culture functions.

Not because we want to, but because the extroverts keep getting sick.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-20T18:47:01

Neglected LPs Project: The year was 1998, and this album was in heavy rotation on KWVA in Eugene, and it was spring. Every time you tried to put on the radio at some party, or at the new Sandino’s, a song from this album would come on. It was like the world had simultaneously discovered both Yo La Tengo and Jad Fair, because suddenly everyone I knew was very familiar with deep-catalog titles that I’d never heard anyone mention before. I felt cheated. Why were people hiding these bands from me, previously? Half Japanese was mind-blowing, and Yo La Tengo had a singular vision that was incredible and beautiful, in a way that was both more punk (and more experimental and more pop) than almost anything else i’d heard before.

But that was later. This was my entry point, to a world of DIY and indie that was in this weird, other place. These two bands were not radio stars, but were COLLEGE RADIO stars, and this album of nearly improvised songs over carefully constructed Jad Fair lyrics is a good piece of evidence as to why. Each song is a Tabloid Headline with a full song to describe the events therein. Each song is charming, knowing, earnest, tongue-in-cheek, and the most serious expression an artist can make, simultaneously.

As a young, confused man, wandering around parties, trying to make time with people who were completely oblivious, it was always so perfect to hear a song from this come on the stereo. That year was full of heartbreak and confusion, and waaaaaaaaaay too much liquor and regret. But I kept returning to this album, all through that time, largely convinced to do so because I heard it almost constantly, on KWVA.

Hearing it now is, fortunately, not a nostalgia trip. Not only is Jad just as sharp as I remember, but the band sounds way more “rehearsed” than I know they were, which is a testament to Yo La Tengo’s excellence. They can just toss off a tune that sounds like an instant indie-rock classic. Not only does this record hold up, two decades later, but I’d say that the age has almost sharpened the focus of what made this collaboration incredible.

But this album. Know this album. Learn from this album. Then become someone you want to be, twenty years later.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-20T09:31:51

Here’s something very cool that’s coming up on the 25th of April, if you enjoy radio and the kinds of experimentalism we get up to. At 10:04 PM CEST, Local Germany Time (If I’ve calculated that correctly, that’s 1 PM PST for those of you on the West Coast), you should tune in to “Open Sounds” on WDR 3. (https://www1.wdr.de/radio/wdr3/index.html) On that program you will hear a new audio piece that was created by People Like Us (Vicki Bennett). In this piece, among many, many other voices, you might recognize a small snippet of my voice.

Which isn’t exactly the primary reason to hear it. I’m just involved; this wasn’t my idea, or creation. But Vicki has used my voice in a previous piece she made for radio, and I have been enamored with her work and her art for ages. (See the comments for a link to an interview I did with her a few years back, about her art and the work she does.) So to be a part of the stuff she does is VERY exciting, even as a bit-player in the overall work.

Regardless, if you like radio and something a little different, I think you should check this out! It’s going to be a lot of fun, if nothing else.

I Can Fly – new radio piece for WDR

Facebook Post: 2020-04-20T06:20:45

A little math:

$1.5 Trillion was injected into the stock market to save the economy.
$2 Trillion was used in the aid package for businesses and the stimulus checks.


$500 Billion is about to be added to the $2 trillion to further help small businesses.

This year ALONE, the US has spent $4 Trillion dollars, just to, “save the economy.”

This morning, the US death toll passed 40,000. That’s roughly $0.1 Billion dollars spent for every 1 people that has died. (Closer to $0.175 Billion per case that has been diagnosed in the US… so far.)

And this is just the money spent in the last few months. This doesn’t include all the usual costs and whatnot that are part and parcel of everyday life.

How much is it worth it, to us, to keep the “economy” going? How much more, per person, will we spend, before we realize the money is no longer the thing that will “save” any of us?

Facebook Post: 2020-04-19T18:56:16

For Sunday Date-Day today, Marla and I watched – through Salem Cinema (Salem, OR) (support local businesses, please) – an incredible documentary, “The Booksellers.” This is the second documentary we’ve watching through Salem Cinema this way (the fungi movie was incredible, too), and it’s probably the easiest way to do something we would do anyway (watch a Sunday afternoon movie), and support a business we both really care about. Plus, it was fun to try and see if you could spot Obadiah or Kat in the background.

I grew up in bookstores. My mom and her first girlfriend opened a store called, “a.k.a. Used Books & Records,” in Cottage Grove when I was in middle school, and outside of mowing lawns and stuff like that, it was my first real job, where I got paid. (I usually opted to get more money in trade, if I’m honest.) In her store, she sold used records (her bag) and used books (her girlfriend’s bag), and they also sold comics (a mutual bag, as it were).

All of my life-long interests were earned as a kid working in that shop. Book nerds and metalheads would come in, while I was listening to George Carlin records and reading Green Lantern comics. I think about that job fairly often, not only because I still come across records in my collection with the “a.k.a.” sticker in the corner (in my mom’s handwriting), but because it was a formative experience, and it immediately enamored me with bookish people, and their ilk.

My first girlfriend was the daughter of the librarian in my hometown. My first non-fast food job was working for B. Dalton, which is how old THAT story is. I loved that job more than anything, and while my urge to move to Portland – and on to Barnes & Noble – should have telegraphed to me that maybe I was straying a little too far from the path, I couldn’t believe that I was lucky enough to run the stockroom on Broadway, and later, the music department at Lloyd Center, at a bookstore in a huge city I loved.

Sure, it wasn’t Powell’s. But, you know. I was close, right? As long as there were books around.

Barnes & Noble hired a brand new manager one day, after I’d been with the company for well over six years, who then went and systematically fired everyone who had been with the company for five or more years. The joke was on her, as they went on to fire her afterwards. All done as a cost saving measure. Which was probably a good thing, as this was just at the beginning of digital books starting to take a bite out of their corporate sales. (Funny, indie stores didn’t suffering in that way, huh? Strange.) 

Anyway, it was transition time. As I collected unemployment and licked my wounds, I enrolled in college, got an English Degree (with a writing minor), and moved on to being a customer-only, with regards to bookstores. 

Occasionally I come across my old nametags in a box, or a bargain art-book I picked up during employee appreciation days, and I’m completely lost in the late ’90’s, reading Bukowski on my breaks, listening to Man… Or Astro-Man?, trying to figure out what my first novel would be like.

There aren’t many days that I don’t think about my bookstore life. There was a point, just before The Rash was hired to fired all of us, where I knew that my life would be bookstores. Forever. My benefits had kicked up after passing the five year mark, the store was doing well, and I was carving out my own niche in the music department. I had imagined my entire future at that company, finding ways to tie the new music releases to books that were hot. At that point in time, I had spent more years, cumulatively, working in bookstores that doing anything else, and for more than dozen years, there was nothing more I loved than thinking about books.

I wanted to write books. I wanted to be around books. I wanted to talk about books. There was something about the kinds of wonderful and weird customers that came in that were my people, and I could tell immediately. While the corporate sheen of B&N usually attracted the kinds of young mall kids who were just looking to rip off music magazines or “Vampire: The Masquerade” RPG books, I imagined myself as part of an older tradition, one that was honored and respected. Someday, I would be an older man, still talking books, maybe handling the magazine department with a certain kind of zest that people would remember after I was gone. 

Between that, and my paid radio days, I thought I had it sorted out.

And then, to loose it all in the name of corporate savings. It really changed a lot of how I view the world of large businesses, and their practices.

Watching “The Booksellers” highlights the kinds of customers and sellers and odd people that would come through the bookstores I was lucky enough to work in, and it was that taste of those personalities that brought all of this back to my mind. In a wonderful series of profiles, you get to know these various book dealers in this film, and their wonderful relationship to the world of Antiquarian Book Sales. These are quirky, unusual, but passionate people who love books more than almost anything, and the film is a wonderful cavalcade of these kinds of personalities, all beaming with the kinds of stories and notions that only bookhandlers have.

While I haven’t been in the book trade in over 15 years, I immediately recognized their analogs in the customers and professionals I met while I was talking Raymond Carver with some customer. There are certain things about “book people” that you can spot a mile away, and this movie has all of the wonderful quaintness of those folks, portrayed as larger than life personalities, they way some of them must certainly be seen by others in the industry.

But there isn’t really anything “epic” about this film. It is a quiet, thoughtful portrait of people who love books. Probably as much (and maybe a little more) than almost any of us love the things that we are also passionate about. And their passion is what this film delivers, in a delightful way that reminds us all, in these moments of isolation, the joy and delight that books offer as they isolate us from the scary world at large, and provide a window into something we can’t find anywhere else.

If you are a book person, then you already know these people. If not by reputation, then by how much they are like other people you already know. And if that’s not a strong enough recommendation, then I don’t know what is.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-19T11:32:08

The podcast feed seems to be acting up, and perhaps you weren’t listening on Friday Night, so here’s this show, now available for stream or download: my guest appearance on The Sunday Morning Hangover, where Marc Time and I play (and talk about) our favorite electronic music compositions. There’s even a live Mini-Mutations breakdown, and all sorts of fun throughout the show. (Frog even calls in with a joke.) This is a great show, so enjoy it again, today!

Facebook Post: 2020-04-18T21:10:37

We discovered that we actually have a rather large collection of stamps, which is nice. Gretta, Alli, The Ramen City Kid (who isn’t on FB), Naomi, Eric, Cori, Alice, Marilyn, Stephen and Don: letters will be posting for ya’ll on Monday.

Several others: I don’t have your addresses, but I commented that you should message me your address, and I will happily send you post.

And: anyone else want some mail from a real person? (Not a bill! But I will certainly write to any Bills I happen to know.)

Facebook Post: 2020-04-18T20:06:42

Ooooooooo. I will be watching this at some point. This might be one of the best artists working, period. (Maybe the Hernendez brothers are close? Brendan McCarthy? There’s only a few at this level.)

Facebook Post: 2020-04-17T08:39:43

I’m waiting for the inevitable Warren Ellis storyline to evolve in the real world. There will be groups that will pop up who worship the virus. Other’s who will claim that to catch the virus offers true enlightenment. Other’s that insist that they DO want to sacrifice their family for capitalism, who want to build a walled community where they can interact and spread the virus freely, without gov’t intervention. Since the virus reveals class and racial inequities, there will be a violent movement of vigilantes who will coordinate online, and strategically enforce among those who don’t get it to STAY THE FUCK HOME. Meanwhile, Exterminating Angels style parties will not only end up contributing to the deaths of the wealthy and celebrities, but the death cult that continues around their parties will include invitations on cards with The Ace of Spades on the back, and in-vogue funeral wear that doubles as a slinky black dress.

Talk shows about families torn by how best to wash your hands.

Movies made and directed entirely through Zoom.

Albums made with 0.1 lag between all performances, and it’s, “the new sound.”

All relationships become weird cam girl/boi interactions.

And for some reason, we all still have traumatic High School stories to bond over.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-16T17:42:18

I wanted to let you all know: it might sound like things are grim, but really, I’m not that bad. I have a lot on my mind, I don’t have a lot of ways to vent it, and I’m trying to not just thoughtlessly discount the horrors that are happening around me, while also, trying to appreciate music and books and stuff. It’s a hard balance. I’m not sure any of us are “great” at it. But I’m doing my best.

I love you all. I’m trying to stay sane. Sometimes it gets the best of me. But for the most part, I’m not doing too bad. I’m just… you know… empathetic at a time when everything sucks.

Sometimes Sonic Youth helps… but… yeah. It’s hard.

I’m fine. But, yes. It’s a really weird time.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-16T07:19:16

Well well well. Isn’t this a pickle? Maybe I can sweep all that other shit aside for a bit today, and focus on: CUTTING NEW SAMPLES! It’s a fun, laborious, time-consuming game where you nit-pick over things that only you notice! Now I’m just gonna endlessly obsess over how noticeable the seams in my loops are. Hang on…

Facebook Post: 2020-04-16T05:56:24

I certainly feel that the end of June is a much more reasonable wait time, considering everything that’s going on. I just hope that something is done about the lost wages, rent we have to pay back, and the stimulus loan-against-ourselves so that in July we don’t feel hopelessly weighed down by debt again.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-15T18:17:47

“On the set of Stagecoach, John Ford called John Wayne a “big oaf” and a “dumb bastard” and continually criticized his line delivery and manner of walking, even how he washed his face on camera. At one point, Ford grabbed Duke by the chin and shook him. “Why are you moving your mouth so much?” he said. “Don’t you know you don’t act with your mouth in pictures? You act with your eyes.” “

Facebook Post: 2020-04-15T12:51:04

Today’s project: Working on this essay about Disney features.

* * * * * *

A Empire is A Wish Your Ideals Make: Looking At The First 20 Years of Disney Cinema.

Part II:

Before the Disney company even considered feature films, there were two further periods of their history that we will only have time to offer some vague lip-service to. At the very beginning, Disney made shorts for some off-brand characters that were not as popular down the road. Then, later, Disney hit upon their star characters, and began to become an incredibly popular animation studio as sound and color was deftly featured in their work.

All through both of these periods, people were seeing Disney cartoons at the theater, as part of the early experience that theater going used to be in the early days. Along with a feature film, theater goers were seeing a newsreel, a few short films, a cartoon, trailers for other stuff, and any number of things, all for the small admission price. In this way, most of America began to fall in love with Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Goofy, and Pluto, as they were usually sandwiched in-between other short fare before the main event was on. 

Prior to 1937, if you knew Disney films at all, it was from going to the theater, and seeing these shorts. It was how the company made their bones, and a couple of these shorts were even award winning.

The format of the short was perfect for a company like theirs: set your characters in any environment, give them some gags to contend with, and the film writes itself. They could re-tell any story, put the film in any era, and re-contextualize their characters in any number of ways. This was a successful formula, and these short cartoons are still a major part of the way people interact with Disney properties.

But, as any aspiring artist will tell you, they longed to make something bigger, something… more. An animated feature was something that hadn’t really been done, and not in a successful, widely distributed manner.

* (There were at least nine earlier efforts at making feature-length animated films, but various distribution problems kept those features regional, and were often lost to time not long after originally screening, too. “The Adventures of Prince Achmed,” the oldest surviving feature, was largely only seen in Germany, in the 20s, and then shelved. A hub of animation in the teens and 20’s, a couple features from the Soviet Union were made, but not seen outside the country for many years. Other features were made in France, Italy and Argentina, but again, were not widely seen, and certainly not known outside their home countries.)

The vision that Disney had was to score an international hit with a feature, in the same way he had with his shorts. Mickey and Donald were starting to get international recognition, and the characters were enabling the Disney short films to get shown before features all over the world. While most animation studios hadn’t been able to parlay their success into that kind of fame, Disney was pretty sure they could expand their notoriety by producing a couple of features as well.

The oral history of all Disney features are easy enough to track down, and what becomes clear is that the seeds of nearly all the feature-length stories that were made among the first 19 features grew out of ideas that were pitched during the conversations about what their first film should be. Which makes sense; at a studio like that, you would never throw away any good ideas. Clearly, anything that seemed like a story they could break went into the “Disney machine.” What came out on the other side was often very surprising. 

In an effort to save on costs, the idea to present their best short features as a film was easy enough to hit on, and they had quite a few that were popular. Since their first “feature-length story” film was still several months away, and since they could slap this one together quickly, they took 41 minutes of material (five short cartoons), and issued them as, “The Academy Award Review of Walt Disney Cartoons.” (This feature has been re-worked two further times: in 1943, it was re-issued and expanded to nine shorts, and again reworked and re-issued in 1966, to bring the final film length to a total of 74 minutes. By most feature-length standards, even the final form is a little, ahem, “short.”)

Nevertheless, the gamble worked, and paid off for Disney in a big way. Since they were already known for their shorts, a collection of the best ones distilled the product into one location, which, until then, fans had to take a chance that a Disney short might be included with a feature they went to see. (Which was not a guarantee.) The chance to see pure, unvarnished Disney product, which was essentially preparing audiences for the upcoming Christmas treat (Snow White) that was on the way, was a masterstroke of marketing on their part. A captive audience of fans is the perfect place to tell them about what’s coming, and with this feature announcing Snow White, the Disney means of media manipulation was also beginning to take shape.

The shorts that are contained in, “Academy Award Review,” are a mix of fairy tales retold (“Three Little Pigs,” “Tortoise and the Hare,” and “The Country Cousin,” a version of The Country Mouse and The City Mouse) blended with Disney originals, which set the template for most of their future work, and was a good representation of the kinds of films they made in the past. And it is probably a more accurate representation of what the company did best at the time, that is to say, features are not their specialty, shorts were.

While this did not prevent the Disney company from making and releasing full-length, feature films, as was the desire in the first place, it is incredibly telling that 12 of the first 19 animated features are compilations of short films, in some form or another. Often, there was a sort of pattern to the releases: a full-length story would get released, then a shorts compilation would. Compilations were favored during the war, as they were easy to produce and didn’t require the same budget as a full-length feature. And you could mix live action into the feature compilations, saving more money.

While the very first feature of this kind was specifically made of older short films sequenced for feature presentation, the others compilation features were made specifically for use as a feature. “Fantasia,” “Make Mine Music,” “Fun and Fancy Free,” “The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad,” and “Melody Time,” are all strictly features that are made up of shorts, with a wrap-around bit that “frame” the “presentation.”

These films were easier to make because you could have several animation teams working on each “short” simultaneously. This way, if you have five teams making five shorts, the film is completed in 1/5th the time. This allows you to produce more animation, and can keep you competitive. Much like most Disney fare, these compilation films are a mix of fairy tales and original stories, and very pointedly, music is the backbone of these films. (Which has been the case for Disney animation ever since it was possible to synchronize sound.) 

In reviewing these musical compilation films, most of this stuff is the kind of fare that you would expect: romantic stories superimposed on cute, short-animation settings, or re-tellings of fairy tales, with some well-known Disney characters in supporting (or main) roles. (Taken to the furthest extreme in, “The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad,” which is two non-Disney stories framed by Basil Rathbone narration.), As is typical with a lot of Disney work, sexist and racist elements pop up from time to time, in sometimes more or less obvious ways. There is a sort of prevailing notion that “domestic violence” is all a part of the world of relationships, and that you can casually use certain racist terms and words without any repercussions, especially if it’s in a song.

The sexism and racism is probably at it’s thickest in, “Saludos Amigos” and, “The Three Caballeros,” films featuring Donald Duck and other characters on a trip to Brazil, where the exploitation of Brazilian life was probably seen as, “an opportunity to show Americans other cultures,” at the time, and comes off as ham-fisted and difficult to rationalize in the year 2020.

While I am certainly fond of different specific moments in all of these films, of all of them, the most memorable is, “Fantasia.” Certainly, the music in these other compilation films is good, and the songs are often remakes of popular tunes, or original tunes that became popular. But the work you hear and see in “Fantasia” was then, and is now, unlike anything you have probably seen and heard before. As whimsical as it is serious, it takes the idea of marrying animation and music to the furthest extremes, where the are moments of pure color and sound.

It is probably most telling that, of all the films in this batch of compilation films, “Fantasia” is the most well known. And rightfully so; it displays the animators at their most imaginative, with connective material that is whimsical and informative, and fun to watch, overall. This use of live-action to help frame the animations was done as a cost-saving measure then. But it also set up something that would have an impact on the other compilation-type films that they would release: they could experiment with format and still make an “animated” film. 

There are four other films that fit in this category that are worth discussing before we move on, and all of them are somewhat harder to find in the modern era. In many ways, these films are so odd, and so unlike the rest of the Disney cannon, that they are worth highlighting for their oddness. 

“The Reluctant Dragon,” was a feature that I had never seen as a child, and even the animated segments were not that familiar to me. And why should it be? I’m sure when I was a kid, no one of my peers knew who Robert Benchley was, and the idea that he would lead us on a tour of the Disney studio from the early 40s would not only confuse children of the 1980s, but is even hard to contextualize, a further 40 years later. While the animated bits are very engaging, it’s no wonder this experiment was buried for decades, only now available through Disney+. As a historical document it is fascinating, but it is probably a confusing entry in their film catalog. 

Unless, of course, you remember the average filmgoing experience of the era. After a pile of shorts, newsreels, and other stuff, you are seeing this feature. You might have wandered in late, thinking your would duck out when you need to. Or maybe you are there just to see whatever the theater is playing. Maybe this is a person’s first time in a theater? “The Reluctant Dragon,” in some ways, is adopting the form of the experience of waiting to see a feature film, almost better than the other compilation films do. It combines color, black and white, animation, live action, and brings you stuff that all looks and sounds like the experience of seeing the things shown before your movie starts. (And, near the end of this film, you sit down with Walt Disney himself, to watch an animated film with Peter Benchley.) If you want to see something that looked very much like what movies were like in the 40’s, this is the perfect film to give you that flavor.

This filmgoing experience (newsreels and shorts, then a feature) would persist throughout WWII, which makes, “Victory Through Air Power,” much like that same experience, save with a focus on the war. Mixing live action and animation, the film presents the entire history of Aviation (in a fairly comical, animated fashion), before drilling into you the one and only way that America can win WWII: through the use of air power, something fairly new to our military. Certainly, propaganda appears in a lot of Disney work, and they addressed the war in a number of films. (In, “Mickey And The Beanstalk,” part of, “Fun and Fancy Free,” Donald and a Dragonfly re-enact planes bombing boats in a way that would be all too real for soldiers in the Pacific theater.) 

But this feature took the newsreel / short cartoon form of what you saw before the film, and put it in the feature presentation, too. It’s no wonder this is a very little seen film, not only because of the racism, but the datedness of the message. (We’re not exactly focused on winning WWII these days.) Watching it now only underlines the propaganda angle, the advertisement angle, and only makes sense if seen as a historic document.

But, again, it shows Disney’s skill at using a film to act as an advertisement for something else.

“So Dear To My Heart,” is a very strange Disney film, and is currently not available on Disney+. VHS versions were available (for a limited time) at various times in the ’80s and ’90’s, and a DVD was made ad a Disney Movie Club Exclusive in 2008. And while it is not at all as offensive as the film most like it in form and structure (“Song of The South,”) it is probably the least known (and least well loved) Disney film. Staring Burl Ives and Bobby Driscol, and featuring a number of songs sung by both, this loose adaptation of a contemporary novel leans on a few animated segments to cut away to, as is the style of films like this. The animated bits offer a wise owl teaching Danny how to be a sheep, while the live action sequences follow the novel more conventionally. It’s essentially a hybrid of the live action films they would make later, and the short cartoons that had popularized. The episodic animated bits act like shorts, broken up by a live-action film. (Or vice versa.)

This same format was used in, “Song of The South,” where the live action story is broken up by the animated story, and both films are book adaptations. And, the Uncle Remus stories are perfect for episodic animated stories, as the original tales are episodic. But we all know why “Song of The South” was buried, and it is unlikely to ever make an appearance on Disney+. While this doesn’t prevent you from finding it online, even seeing small bits immediately highlights the racism. There’s almost no other way to read this film.

And yet, at the time, it was perfectly in character to make a compilation style film like this, as they had done so many times before, and including some racism was just business as usual for them. It is shocking, when you look at their other work, how much is as racist, if not more so, than “Song of The South.” And yet, I can easily see those works, while this one is still locked in the Disney vault.

While there are certainly reasons why these kinds of films are not being made by Disney anymore, it is telling that they went this route, at first. They weren’t quite ready to entirely branch out into making only full-length features. But using this period to transition to a company that makes feature films, you have to make many short stops along the way.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-15T09:42:25

I will admit, the last couple days I have been vacillating between “fine” and “suddenly overly anxious,” and I think a lot of it has to do with my age old fears and concerns about money.

My nightmare now has shifted to, “What if we don’t get the hint, and instead, double down on keeping the system of jobs and wages and power concentrated at the top?” Not exactly that I’m in danger; I think our house, specifically, will make it through, but it will be tough. But if we stretch this out to what we all will inevitably have to face, if we start to take this virus seriously, we will be in some very real danger. And the idea that we can all return to our jobs again, safely, and get our lives back on track denies the very real problem that, if we have to try and return to life as it was before, we will all be absolutely, incredibly, financially fucked.

I was doing pretty good at the beginning. I got a lot done, I have re-discovered music I loved that I haven’t listened to in ages, I’m reading and watching movies. There’s even a little novel evolving in my spare time. But as time goes on, it seems clearer and clearer that there’s no big plan to try and steer the ship toward a better port. And that idea that, not only do we have to dig our way out of the financial hole of the last couple months, AND continue to move forward as if we can just go back to how it used to be, is starting to really get on my nerves.

I know I’m not alone; most news stories seem to be about how we’re all having weird dreams and that stress is getting to us. But the idea that we’re not gonna take away any lessons from this is, without a doubt, absolutely terrifying.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-14T17:25:55

Neglected LPs Project: Imagine my delight when I spotted a Spike Jones record at a thrift store, and with a Jack Davis cover, no less! While I have a pretty good Spike Jones collection these days, I didn’t for years, and he was that guy I heard on Dr. Demento. Ironically, after I finally started to get his albums, I did that thing that people with a lot of records do: listened to it once, then filed it.

Which is a shame, because this record is hilarious. The band is always fantastic, every performance is like they are going to fly apart throughout the entire song, but never actually do.

I’m still not entirely sure how they fully captured the frenzy of this band in any way that makes sense, because this is essentially the punkest thing imaginable, decades before that had occurred to anyone else.

I should probably listen to Spike Jones every day, all things considered.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-14T16:38:47

Here’s something fun to look forward to: KWVA is re-running some of their programming, while they try to fill their airtime now that social distancing is a way of life. So, imagine my delight when I discovered that on this Friday, at 8 PM, KWVA will re-run a great episode of The Sunday Morning Hangover, featuring me and Marc Time playing some of our favorite electronic music! And… there’s a live Mini-Mutations get-down… with Marc on deck! It’s a very fun episode, and it’s a great way to enjoy your Friday Night! (And: the show will hit the podcast feed again, too, so be on the lookout for that!) Thanks again, KWVA, and the Reverend Marc Time, too!

Facebook Post: 2020-04-14T14:10:55

A bit of levity:

I was running errands in the car, and I saw two people waiting for the bus. The girl is wearing a mask, and is leaning as far away from this gentleman – distancing, as it were – without appearing to be NOT waiting for the bus. But she’s trying to put some space between her and the gentleman there, too.

The guy is, to his credit, wearing a mask too: Around his chin, so he can smoke a cigarette. And he appeared to be doing what men have been doing for centuries: cluelessly trying to chat her up.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-13T17:32:47

One piece of mail frustrates you, while another offers comfort. These postcard releases by Dylan Houser have all been fantastic, and his work is very impressive. While getting declined for unemployment is annoying, getting stuff like this in the mail certainly feels like I have, in my life, an embarrassment of…


Facebook Post: 2020-04-13T16:17:02

Neglected LPs project: The Days of Wine & Roses. A zillion years ago, in some dumb book that only nerds read, which collected some bullshit or other written for various ‘zines and whatnot, Steve Wynn once quipped that good rock and roll needs to have three qualities at work in order to be any good: sexiness, a sense of humor, and the sound as if everything might — but doesn’t quite — fly apart at any moment. It’s a pity that this album completely fails in the third category, because Wynn’s records are a little more meticulously assembled than he would like you to think. But there’s no bad songs on this album anyway, as it captures listlessness and fury and broken relationships and joyous moments… and, the melancholy that is beneath every joke we tell when our friends are in earshot. There should be more people who shoot for making the greatest album ever. Part of the formula is to know that, to get there, you gotta fail… somehow.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-13T13:37:48

Every spring I have a list of chores that “need” to be done. But the genius of yardwork is that it’s like running on a treadmill: there is always more work to be done, and no way you could ever “finish” it. Yard work, by nature, is nothing more than exercise.

Which is made clear, every spring, when nature is more than happy to send the message that, if you’re no longer interested, it is ready to take over. All I have to do is stop.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-12T11:13:24

At the center of your particular Keister is nothing to be ashamed of, or even see as something odd, or dirty. In fact, your personal celebration is probably more important than anything else this particular year. But if you are able to, we find that Keister is best celebrated with those who are the closest to you can come together, and embrace the wholesome nature of this joyous time of year. Let your Keister celebration bring you closest to the person you love the most.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-12T08:19:58

Adding to some previous ruminations:

Do I know anyone who is genuinely filled with hate, and a desire to see most people suffer, while only a small elite group have access to resources and comfort?

Do I know anyone who would put money over their friends and family? Do I know anyone who would even put money over a complete stranger?

Do I know anyone who believes that certain people don’t deserve health care?

Do I know anyone who doesn’t see a problem with racism or sexism?

Do I know anyone who thinks they are a good person, but they just don’t like it when people “aren’t normal”?

Do I know anyone at all who doesn’t see a problem with hateful people in our world?

Do I know anyone who thinks that it is your American Right to be an asshole whenever you see fit?

Do I know anyone who doesn’t have sympathy for the poor?

Do I know anyone who feels that our current class system is fair, and shouldn’t change?

Do I know anyone who genuinely thinks that a conservative point of view will lead us to a better tomorrow?

Do I know anyone who thinks, “Yeah, everything is perfectly fine. Nothing should change at all,”?

What I’m saying, is:

Do I know anyone who doesn’t care about humanity and the planet?

Facebook Post: 2020-04-10T22:06:35

I was suddenly reminded of this song, which Colin Hix introduced to me. I had this on a mix tape he made me at some point in the mid-90’s. I love this particular version of this medley, but I never knew who it was by. I vaguely remembered reading a WFMU Blog Post a million years ago that identified the band, but I couldn’t remember any more. I googled “Seasons In The Sung The Hustle,” and it was the first result.

Feeling lucky, the song that followed it on the original tape was another song I could never track down, a song about Vanilla Ice, and something about how bad he was in bed. I decided to Google, “Vanilla Ice Bad In Bed,” and discovered that the song is originally by Jayne County (https://youtu.be/DCxmF_rypJM), and is merely called, “Bad In Bed.” Clearly, the version from the tape, which I tried a few times to turn up, was by a band covering the Jayne County tune, but changing a few lines to be more about Vanilla Ice. (There was another line about how Vanilla was the Dan Quayle of Rock and Roll.)

Either way, I nailed the first one, and figured out a little more about the second. I guess this lockdown is good for something.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-10T21:38:24

At some point, we should probably get our stories straight. People in the future will want to know what life was like, “before Captain Trumps,” and this is our chance to lie in entertaining ways to the people of the future so we can enjoy this awful hellscape that we will all have to endure.

I think we should start saying that Elephants, Tigers, and Lions originally roamed the United States unchecked, and in order to settle the country, we had to tame them, and travel in packs known as “circuses,” were we would move across the countryside, getting into Adventures, like on The Fugitive TV Show.

This is just off the dome; we can workshop it. But I’m certainly trying to think of new ways to entertain ourselves in the future.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-10T16:40:41

Neglected LPs Project: There are a few things that become instantaneously clear as a young person the moment you have personal contact: cookies with raisins in them are bullshit, all adults are constantly lying to you, and GENERIC FLIPPER is one of the greatest artistic achievements of the 20th Century. Not content to be truly skilled songwriters or performers, they choose to do the OPPOSITE of what was cool at every opportunity, to make a point about… well, doing heroin, I think? Regardless, this is a flawless record, perfectly capturing a band that was Generation X and Grunge before those things existed, is simultaneously earnest and laconic, and is so brilliantly packaged that no less than Public Image Limited ripped off the idea. As they used to say around the half-pipe, this is ALL KILLER, NO FILLER. A true masterpiece of weird rock music.

Facebook Post: 2020-04-10T05:42:38

NPR Tid-Bit today: Grocery Store Sales are up nationally, but only by a small fraction. (Not a lot for the Sales to impact the grocery store in a big way, but enough to be noticeable.) Grocery Sales, however, are not enough to make up for the massive decrease in Food Sales nationally, from restaurants and locations that had to shut down due to the virus. Far more money, by a factor of four, was being spent in restaurants.

This means that previously, a ridiculously large number of food sales in general were in restaurants, period. That same number of meals, theoretically, are still being eaten in America, but at a significant savings when it has to be made at home.

I think this will have an impact on our economy in some way…