I’m worthless. As John Cho would say, I am not worthwhile. I claimed to be bringing the blog back, then let it sit dormant for weeks on end. But have no fear! I bring you a mass quantity of links (some of them old) for your viewing pleasure; enjoy!
A.V. Club Interview with Rainn Wilson
Who doesn’t love Rainn Wilson? This interview has some good background information, although a lot of it is about The Rocker, which we all know flopped miserably. Still worth it for gems such as this regarding Juno: ” Sexual tension… I think Ellen Page is hott, double-t hott. All that sexual tension will probably be on the 25th-anniversary DVD as the torrid erotic scenes between Rollo and Juno. I think they bathe in a bathtub of Sunny D and get it on.”
Better Late Than Never: Watchmen
With the greatest graphic novel of all time coming to the big screen next year, there has been a lot of hoopla surrounding the release (including Fox suing Warner Bros. over rights issues). This article tells you why the story is so incredible, and why everyone should read it.
Former SuperSonics owner dropping Bennett lawsuit
I just wanted to make sure you saw what a slimy hack Howard Schulz is (at least in the sports world…I’m not necessarily judging his coffee or business ethics). He tries to save face by suing Clay Bennett after he realizes the city of Seattle hates the fact that he sold it a businessman from a city desparetely in want of an NBA team, and then slips it out late on a Friday that he’s dropping the lawsuit. For shame, Howard.
Heart to McCain campaign: stop using “Barracuda”
Nothing makes me happier than a great rock band telling an old fart to screw off. And a local great rock band at that!
Yes, it was a terrible call Husky nation
Ted Miller gets all the points right, including the fact that the call isn’t what made us lose the game. The referees should be suspended, but so should our pathetic defense and inept offense. I still support Tyrone Willingham, but I won’t object if he’s gone after this season because we don’t go to a bowl game.
That’s all for now, hopefully I’ll be back soon with more great ramblings and links!
Merlin Mann posted an intriguing blog post over at 43 Folders the other day, outlining the key points to keep in mind when creating a blog. My personal favorite was the seventh point:
Good blogs make you want to start your own blog. At some point, everyone wants to kill the Buddha and make their own obsessions the focus. This is good. It means you care.
I liked this one because, well, it’s what happened to me. I spent so much time reading blogs (and, in my opinion, good blogs), that I thought to myself, “Hey, why can’t I do that?” And after a few failed attempts and a still failing revision, I’ve been pretty happy with the results.
I’ve always felt the point of a blog was twofold; to bring up topics that the writer is interested in, and to bring up topics that the reader is interested in. If you aren’t getting feedback, there’s no point in it being public. Blogs of those nature should stay as text files in your documents folder. But you also can’t be writing about things you know nothing about; this will only infuriate the readers after they constantly correct you. The happy medium is where it’s at, my friends.
And that brings me back to Merlin’s point. A good blog doesn’t just spur discussion. It causes the reader to want to discuss the topic so in depth that they have to go create their own blog because a simple comment on a post just won’t do. It’s as good goal to strive for, and I hope that someday (however unlikely) I’ll be able to achieve that.
If you’re a blogger, you should definitely take the time to read the rest of Merlin’s post. If 10% of the bad blogs out there took that advice, we’d have a much more interesting Internet.
John Roderick may be a dick, but he has a way with words (mostly lyrics, but also prose). He’s now doing a weekly blog for the Seattle Weekly, which you can find here. Here’s a snippet of my favorite part:
In any case, this next Long Winters album is going to have a lot of lunar-eclipse-influenced disco jams on it, and the Seattle Weekly asked me to blog about it because they are running out of ideas and hoping to squeeze some free content out of people. I, for one, don’t mind because I’m mad about blogging! I was thinking the other day that, what with the incredible shortage of books and magazines in the world, I’d like to dedicate more of my precious reading hours to consuming the unedited journaling of as many amateur diarists as time permits! Hooray!
It may be ironic or hypocritical to say I loved that bit, but the fact is I completely agree with his sentiment. In general, blogs are run and written by non-experts who have no journalism background and just want attention and to have people listen to them. Yes, the lines are being blurred more and more often (I don’t knock the Weekly, for instance, for having it’s normal writers also blog from day to day), but the fact remains that most of what people want to say is not worth reading. I have this blog for myself, and for anyone who wants to read it, but I don’t need the validation of 100 strangers coming here everyday like most bloggers do.
Go read a book. Go do your homework. Go try to make the world a better place in whatever way you know how. If you have time to stop by here (or any other blog you like) and see what’s happening, great. But don’t get any sort of miscommunication that what I (or any other blogger) say is more important than what you might say. We’re all in the same boat, just pontificating to the world. That, and linking to awesome videos of cats playing the piano:
For those of you not hip to the LITA bandwagon, Bob has been blogging periodically on their site about his various tour shenanigans with The Blakes. He took a bit of a hiatus, but now is back! Click here for the full post, but here’s a teaser:
Our first order of business for the tour was to record a session for iTunes at Different Fur studios in San Francisco on Thursday. Amazingly, we’d never been to San Fran before and we were very taken by the city. It’s a beautiful, unique place. ITunes head Bruno met us at the studio and gave us all brand new iPod Nanos, which I thought was a nice gesture. Matt Sullivan and Lars both flew down and met us there as well. Anyway, Different Fur has excellent facilities and a fine staff and we had a very productive session, recording eight tracks for iTunes to use exclusively. We’ll be working with house engineer Patrick to get final mixes in the coming week or so and we’re optimistic about the end results. In celebration, we got drunk at an Irish bar around the corner with Lars and Matt. We later launched into a spirited discussion over dinner at a neighboring Thai restaurant about how to ask fans to request our songs on the radio without coming across as douches. It made little sense.
While I don’t agree with every single one of his points, I think overall Paul Thurrott hits the nail on the head about the MacBook Air:
It’s too expensive. No surprise there: Apple technology is generally quite expensive at launch. The SSD version of the MacBook Air, however, is particularly expensive: It starts at over $3000. Yikes.
There’s no Ethernet. The MacBook Air comes with no built-in Ethernet port, which is just astonishing given how unsafe even secure wireless networks are today. While you can purchase a USB-based Ethernet adapter for $29, that adapter will then occupying the one and only USB port on the device.
It’s thin to no good end. While there are already a number of ultra-portable machines in the MacBook Air’s weight class (3 pounds), most of them exceed Apple’s device in ways that are meaningful. They have Ethernet ports, for example. More than one USB port. A docking station for a hardware “slice” that adds more battery and an optical drive. And so on. With the MacBook Air, less really is less, and in this case at least, Apple’s (Jobs’) penchant for tiny, elegant hardware is getting in the way of functionality in a way that makes the product inherently less useful to users. This device swings way too far into “form over function” territory.
These are the big reasons (in addition to no FireWire) keeping me from even considering purchasing it. You may remember that I dropped my PowerBook 12″ a few months ago (and as of Monday, the DVD drive finally died), so I’m looking for a replacement. Well, the MacBook Air will not be it.
(I must add that that the one problem I don’t have with the MacBook Air is the lack of a user-replacable battery. Sure, this will cause an annoyance to some, but iPods and iPhones don’t have them either. Plus, like those, the MacBook Air can be taken in to any Apple Store and have a replacement battery installed for a flat fee – equal to what an extra battery would cost.)
Sorry, Apple. Better luck next time.
I don’t know about you, but this dampened my day:
Eric Grandy has just been promoted to music editor. He’s been a staff writer at The Stranger for more than a year, writing the weekly local music news column Fucking in the Streets, excellent profiles of local and national acts (Truckasaurus, MIA, Les Savy Fav—the list goes on), and editing special sections (the 2007 Bumbershoot guide, the oral history of the 500 block of East Pine Street). We’re really excited about where Eric is going to take the section.
Jonathan Zwickel, who has done fantastic writing for The Stranger in the last year—his gorgeous Cave Singers essay and his analysis of The Lonely H come to mind—is no longer on staff, although we hope he’ll still be a presence in the paper and on Line Out.
That’s a huge mistake (but what else is new for The Stranger). Eric Grandy is a no talent ass clown big fan of Daft Punk, while Zwickel not only brought a different (read: not Seattle indie hipster slant) mindset to the outlet, he also brought some journalistic integrity. But now that DJ Fucking In The Streets (who is most likely the worst DJ you will ever witness live) has taken his place, with Megan Seling quickly moving up the chain, don’t expect much actual music news. In it’s place you’ll see a lot of gossip and baseless attacks on genres they’re not fans of.
I wish I could take credit for some of these wonderful comments from the blog post:
“Hey Grandy, I got this great idea for a Van Halen piece I want to pitch to you. Let’s do lunch!” – Paulus
“What?! No Zwick? Laaaaaaaaaaaaaaaame. Congrats on the super high school-ization of your paper!” – YrLame
“JZ will be sorely missed. Now it’s all cool-hairdo children at the wheel… awesome. Suck it, Stranger.” – CoryT
“are you serious? there’s no reason to ever read the music column ever again now that captain douchebag is behind the wheel.” – dizzle
“your a blowjob hack grandy, go hang yourself!” – fuck you grandy
Okay, maybe not that last one. I don’t wish death upon him. Just, maybe, something similarly negative but not so finite.
And yes, I have now taken Line Out off of my RSS feed list. Good luck, Stranger, you’ll need it.
Aside from the lead actors, the other huge highlight of Superbad—the part I can’t believe isn’t being talked about more, the part that is not the name “McLovin”—is the soundtrack. Apatow brought on composer Lyle Workman to put together funk-fueled original material to match classic tracks by the Bar-Kays, the Ohio Players, Rick James, Curtis Mayfield, and more. Workman then looked to funk forebear Bootsy Collins, who played bass for James Brown before becoming a star member of Parliament-Funkadelic in the ’70s. Collins recruited original JBs drummers Jab’o Starks and Clyde Stubblefield, guitarist Catfish Collins, and P-Funk/Talking Heads keyboard genius Bernie Worrell.
He’s so right. You never think twice about the music during the movie because a) you’re too caught up in the hijinks on screen, and b) it fits perfectly and you’re never caught thinking “why did that song just play?”
I highly recommend everyone pick this movie up, and why not get the soundtrack as well.
Cafe Minnie’s is no more. Belltown’s greasiest greasy spoon, and only 24-hour joint at that, was finally done in, not by crappy food and crappy service but by the ban on indoor smoking. That’s the owner’s story, and he’s sticking to it.
I used to go to Cafe Minnie’s every weekend for some delicious blueberry pancakes when I worked in Belltown (although I can’t argue that the service was horrible). I haven’t been there in over a year, but I kind of figured it was the type of place that could never go under. I thought wrong.