31 July 2007

Dale Pitches My Life

We’re back with episode two of Passions: Dale Questions Beth.

If the story of your life were to be filmed and you had a hand in picking the title of the film and the actor who would be playing you, what would your choices be?

Interesting question, Dale, one I’ve never been asked. I tossed and turned all night, trying to name my life in five words or less and mentally auditioning a wide range of actresses.

The Pitch: Funny, semi-ditzy, adventurous fortysomething woman chooses the single life over marriage, giving her the freedom to obsess over music, concerts, books, travel, friends … and men.

Yeah, that’s gonna draw a huge box office. Maybe I need to start dating a young wizard.

The movie title: Sex and the Southern City. My life could be an interesting spin on the iconic HBO series. There are similarities. Carrie wrote a column; I write a blog (and I write for a living). We’ve both had our share of “interesting” dating debacles. Our friends are our greatest loves. Move it up a decade and down nine hundred miles, and you have my life. Ah, the absurdities that will be captured on celluloid! The Zevon kiss. The weirdos and the wows. The R.E.M. soundtrack.

Who will play my Carrie Bradshaw-esque self, you ask? I’m tapping Julia Louis-Dreyfus. She’d nail the funny and obsessive, and she's comfortable around male buddies. Plus, my dad loved her.

If we were closer in age, I would pick Diane Keaton. I love her naturally screwball, fun self, her obvious lust for life, her laugh, living life her way without giving a damn what others think. And her style! I’m always mesmerized by her wardrobe. I just watched the don’t-waste-your-time Because I Said So simply to check out her wardrobe; I’m still drooling over those ropes and ropes of pearls.

Fingers crossed that Richard Curtis will direct.

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30 July 2007

The Most Brilliant Question … Ever

The much loved and greatly admired Dale (of Passion of the) recently offered up his interview skills. Never one to skip a good quiz opportunity (and too busy to come up with ideas to write about), I waved my virtual hand and asked for five. Dale must have been busy as a … well, you know … this weekend, as he came up with some brilliant questions. In fact, they’re so brilliant, I’m going to answer just one or two at a time. Today’s question is the best, most thrilling, fantasy-inducing question I’ve been asked … evah:

Michael Stipe has lost his voice and needs someone to fill in. You're allowed one R.E.M. song to audition with. Which one do you think you could nail?

Is that a fan-damn-tastic question or what!

I agonized over this fan-damn-tastic question all weekend long. My long-desired fantasy to perform in front of Stipe, Mills, and Buck — and I get just one shot? I went through the entire catalog — from Chronic Town through Around the Sun — singing snippets and trying out my dance moves. I narrowed the list down to fifty … then twenty … finally, ten. But I could sing just one.

I should have stopped twenty-four years ago.

I’m a classic R.E.M. fan. I need to sing an early tune, a song that defines the band for me. My gut knew all along my audition song would be "Sitting Still." I can belt that one — and dance and twirl in ways Michael could appreciate. Plus, I’d get the lyrics sheet and finally prove Renae wrong.

But there’s one phrase in Dale’s question that sours it for me: you could nail. Unfortunately, thanks to my God-not-given musical talent, the only R.E.M. song I can honestly nail is "Endgame."

I do, however, think I nail the blue mask:

Come back tomorrow, kids, for another episode of Passions.

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27 July 2007

Mix Tape Friday: Guys and Dolls

What better way to kick off date night than with a mix tape of boy/girl duets? A guest vocalist can make or break a song. “Gimme Shelter” is a fantastic song — but Merry Clayton’s vocals turn it into a fan-f*cking-tastic one. A great duet doesn’t necessarily have to pair two perfectly suited voices. Some of the best duets are those that at first make you go “huh?” — such as the pairing of Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong in 1956 — but once you hear them singing together, you wonder why they took so long to hook up.

Rolling Stones feat. Merry Clayton: Gimme Shelter

David Bowie feat. Queen Latifah: Fame 90

De La Soul feat. Chaka Khan: All Good

Beyonce feat. Jay-Z: Crazy in Love

Tina Turner feat. Elton John: The Bitch Is Back

Tom Jones feat. The Cardigans: Burning Down the House

Sleater-Kinney + Fred Schneider: Angry Inch

Sonic Youth feat. Chuck D: Kool Thing

Ramones feat. Debbie Harry: Go Lil' Camaro Go

KLF feat. Tammy Wynette: Justified and Ancient

Gabin feat. Dee Dee Bridgewater: Into My Soul

Crusaders feat. Randy Crawford: Street Life

Moby feat. Gwen Stefani: South Side

Debbie Harry + Iggy Pop: Well Did You Evah

Paul Westerberg + Joan Jett: Let's Do It (Let’s Fall in Love)

Otis Redding + Carla Thomas: Tramp

Johnny Cash + June Carter Cash: Jackson

Richard & Linda Thompson: Don’t Renege on Our Love<

Keith Richards feat. Sarah Dash: Make No Mistake

R.E.M. feat. Kate Pierson: Me in Honey

Iggy Pop feat. Kate Pierson: Candy

Ella Fitzgerald + Louis Armstrong: A Foggy Day in London Town

Marvin Gaye + Tammi Terrell: You're All I Need to Get By

Serge Gainsbourg feat. Jane Birkin: Je T'aime Moi Non Plus

What’s your favorite duet?

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25 July 2007

Why I Love the Internet: Reason #413

Where else can you watch Filipino inmates reenacting the "Thriller" video?

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23 July 2007

The Random, Not the Mundane

I was tagged by Moxie to answer five random questions. I love random questions. My conversational style revolves around random questions. Hope you enjoy my random answers.

1. If you could be a type of chocolate, what kind would you be, and why?

A Hershey’s with almonds bar. Simple, perfect chocolate with those lovely toasted almonds.

2. What was your favorite song the year you graduated from high school?

I graduated from high school in June 1977 — just when music was getting interesting. I wish I could claim “Blitzkrieg Bop” or “Janie Jones,” but it was another three months before I began evolving musically. My musically naïve high-school senior self loved two wonderful songs:

For good ol’ seventies rock ‘n’ roll, there’s nothing better than Boston’s "Foreplay/Long Time." It’s still one of my favorite songs to listen to in the car, driving as fast as I can get away with. There was an all-night party our last quarter in high school — the soccer team, the sister and me, and our best friends — and the first Boston album and a KISS album were the soundtrack until dawn. Ah, good times.

Jackson Browne’s "Here Comes Those Tears Again" was my favorite girlie song. What lovely, heartbroken angst! I was working at Six Flags, on the Okefenokee Swamp ride, when my beau dumped me and broke my heart. Part of each work shift had me sitting in the dark, making sure kids didn’t hop off the boat … and I’d sit in that dark singing “Here Comes Those Tears” and crying over that wild boy, as only a high school girl can. Throw in Jackson Browne’s back story with his wife’s suicide, and you had the perfect song for a romantic, drama-queen teen.

That’s me, thirty years ago, in our class officer photo (yeah, I was one of those involved dorks in high school). Too bad you can’t see the detail of that fabulous outfit — that’s quality, pure 1970s patchwork denim vest and jeans, kids. The heartbreaker’s Mustang is in the background.

3. If you were running for president in 2008, what would be your platform?

— Get our troops out of Iraq.
— Legalize gay marriage throughout the nation.
— Make sure every child has healthcare coverage.
— Support research into alternate fuel sources.
— Declare your birthday a mandatory day off with pay.

4. What is your least favorite root vegetable?

The rutabaga and the turnip. I do, however, love the radish and the carrot.

5. What three historical figures would you like to have over for dinner and drinks?

If I’m going for an intellectual night around my dining table, I’d have these three over for a discourse on how this country began and where it is today: Thomas Jefferson, Martin Luther King Jr., and Bill Clinton. For a memorable night of drinking and carousing and witty banter, I’d invite Oscar Wilde, Truman Capote, and Cole Porter.

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Now it’s my turn: five random questions for five bloggers. I’m going all-chick this time:

Here are their questions:

1. Who was your Tiger Beat crush? Do you still find him cute?

2. You’re the new hot voice out there, and everyone wants to play with you. Who do you pick to play in your backup band?

3. What’s your favorite curse word? When do you use it?

4. What’s your guilty pleasure TV show, the one you’re almost embarrassed to admit you watch?

5. Which is your very favorite bauble?

Confess away, ladies.

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20 July 2007

Mix Tape Friday: POP! Goes the Alt Bands

God, I love cover tunes. It’s interesting to hear the songs a band covers — you get a hint about what they're listening to. And it's fun to hear them play a song for a goof (see: Richard Thompson's cover of "Oops, I Did It Again" a few weeks back). As with most music-obsessed folks, I have a huge collection of cover tunes — more than a hundred by R.E.M. alone — so this will be a fun recurring theme on Mix Tape Fridays.

This week: pop tunes covered by alternative and punk bands. Can you name the original artists?

1. R.E.M.: Dragging the Line (Tommy James & The Shondells)

2. Foo Fighters: Baker Street (Gerry Rafferty)

3. Lemonheads: Mrs. Robinson (Simon & Garfunkel)

4. Grant Lee Buffalo: In My Room (Beach Boys)

5. Sonic Youth: Superstar (The Carpenters)

6. Wilco: Thirteen (Big Star)

7. Cracker: Rainy Days and Mondays (The Carpenters)

8. Twilight Singers: Kites Are Fun (The Free Design)

9. The Beautiful South: Dream a Little Dream of Me (The Mamas & The Papas)

10. Hüsker Dü: Love Is All Around (Theme to "The Mary Tyler Moore Show")

11. Decemberists: Think About Me (Fleetwood Mac)

12. Ultrahorse: Stuck in the Middle With You (Stealers Wheel)

13. Johnny Thunders: These Boots Are Made for Walking (Nancy Sinatra)

14. Fine Young Cannibals: Suspicious Minds (Elvis Presley)

15. Stranglers: 96 Tears (? and The Mysterians)

16. Everclear: Our Lips Are Sealed (Fun Boy Three/The Go-Go's)

17. Alex Chilton: Volare (Dean Martin/Al Martino)

18. Coolies: Having My Baby (Paul Anka)

19. Ramones: Needles and Pins (The Searchers)

20. English Beat: Can't Get Used to Losing You (Andy Williams/Chad & Jeremy)

21. R.E.M.: Out in the Country (Three Dog Night)

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19 July 2007

Who Needs the Geek Squad?

When you have so many smart, helpful readers? I (stupidly, frustratingly) forgot about SpyBot and Ad-Aware, and I'm thankful that you triggered my memory. I ran both, trapping all but one of those pop-up sons of bitches. A couple of updates and addition runs, and my PC should be clean and happy once again. I've also updated my AVG antivirus.

Y'all rock ... and so I'd like to treat you to a Chuck Jones classic.

Show of hands for those willing to admit this was their first introduction to opera? I'm showin' ...

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18 July 2007

Death to Spammers!

While visiting a lyrics site Monday night, a nasty little pop-up package grabbed hold of my virtual being and installed its nastiness deep within the recesses of my computer. It has latched onto my Web life like a nasty little barnacle of banality, continually informing me of important sites such as Adult Friend Finder and Generous Genie.

Yes, I know having that great virus package in your drawer, not on your PC, isn’t helpful … but I’ve been busy … so just let me whine and bitch for a moment or seven.

Anyone know how to get rid of this nasty infection without having to restage my PC?

In the meantime, I’m singing “Flog the bastards,” to the tune of “Kill the wabbit.”

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16 July 2007

Bumper Sticker Du Jour

Spotted on an F150, beautifully balancing the ubiquitous 8 sticker:

Amazing that I’m still single down here in Georgia, ain’t it? Sad thing is, I may have dated him in high school.

That bumper sticker got me in the mood for Mr. Walker — Johnny and Jerry Jeff. Join me on the chorus, why don’tcha?

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15 July 2007

They Burned This Whole City Down

What a perfect Friday night: The Decemberists with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. At Chastain Park Amphitheater. On that rarest of July nights: low eighties, no humidity. A perfect setup for what proved to be a perfect show.

Pairing The Decemberists with the Atlanta Symphony was brilliant. Their songs work beautifully with an orchestra behind them, and tband seemed to get a kick out of playing with them. Plus, we got to hear the full “Tain,” which was amazing with the orchestra backing up the band! I walked out filled with joy and excitement; it was different, it was beautiful, it was fun.

The Decemberists performed a great mix, covering their entire catalog. Even though they didn’t perform any of my faves, the setlist was great.

Setlist: July 13, 2007

The Crane Wife 1 & 2
The Infanta
We Both Go Down Together
The Bagman's Gambit
Perfect Crime #2 *
L.A. I'm Yours
The Tain
Oh Valencia *
I Was Meant for the Stage

16 Military Wives *
The Mariner's Revenge Song *

*without the Atlanta Symphony

Several friends and acquaintances have chosen to skip past Decemberists shows — even their set at Bonnaroo — because they imagine a dour, boring stage presence.

They are so wrong.

The Decemberists have a helluva good time on stage. Colin’s banter is always entertaining — “We’d love to play your requests, but it’s hard to ask the symphony to jam in the key of E” — and he even jumped into the crowd to sample crackers at a front table (people often bring elaborate picnics to Chastain). He also sang happy birthday to a front-row patron celebrating his 94th birthday; the adorable chap later waltzed with a lovely woman all over the pit.

There’s always one song that sends the band into wonderfully delirious craziness, and Friday night’s “I Was Meant for the Stage” was our fun moment under the stars. Colin had his guitar on the ground, playing it with his mouth, his feet, and other body parts, while the rest of the gang ran around stage like little kids, banging and playing and making all sorts of wonderful noise. I always enjoy that part of their show.

It was surprising to see so many empty seats at the amphitheater, but The Decemberists have played here twice in the last ten months. The fans who stayed home missed a great show, and should hang heads and kick doors all week.

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13 July 2007

Mix Tape Friday: Mighty Aphrodite

We’re debuting a new series for Mix Tape Friday: Mighty Aphrodite, or chicks-only musicians (I stole the name from a weekly show on my college radio station). The first in the Mighty Aphrodite series is The Renae Tape, for my best friend who’s in town right now. Her feet hit Georgia clay, my toe started tapping to Renae-and-Beth classics. I used to make Renae mix tapes all the time with that week's favorite bands and songs. Hope y’all enjoy this one.

  • Mother's Finest: Baby Love

  • Elastica: Connection

  • The Breeders: Cannonball

  • The Pixies: Gigantic

  • Ultra Vivid Scene feat. Kim Deal: Special One

  • Jane Siberry: Everything Reminds Me of My Dog
  • Garbage: When I Grow Up

  • The B-52's: Legal Tender

  • Voice of the Beehive: Beat of Love

  • Oh-OK: Such N Such

  • Magnapop: Merry

  • 10,000 Maniacs: Pit Viper

  • Pylon: Crazy

  • Gang of Four: Is It Love

  • Neneh Cherry feat. Michael Stipe: Trout

  • Tom Tom Club: Genius of Love

  • Deee-Lite: Groove Is in the Heart

  • Yaz: Nobody's Diary

  • Jody Grind: Peter Gunn

  • Lucinda Williams: Car Wheels on a Gravel Road

  • Rickie Lee Jones: Dat Dere

  • Patti Smith: When Doves Cry

  • Hem: So. Central Rain

  • Joan Armatrading: Willow

  • Cat Power: Wonderwall

  • Wilhelmenia Wiggins Fernandez: Aria from 'La Wally'

There’s a good story or great memory behind every song on the list, but we have time for just a few.

Renae’s R.E.M. is Oasis (you should read all her comments to my (What’s the Story) Morning Glory? post) + Renae’s husband introduced me to Cat Power = the perfect cover tune for this mix tape.

Rickie Lee Jones is one of Renae’s all-time faves, one of the few musicians she found on her own (she's introduced to most bands by her husband or me, the music bullies). I picked the track “Dat Dere” (from Pop Pop) because we all loved going to Cafe Erewhon to see Cy Timmons in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and he’s the first person I heard perform the song.

Renae discovered 10,000 Maniacs, back when they were new wave, not folkie, back they were semi-local, in 1983. Their first albums — Secrets of the I Ching and Human Conflict No. 5 — were great for dancing and spinning all night long … as long as you didn’t notice how bleak the lyrics could be. Give “Pit Viper” a spin. I danced and did Natalie spins all over the room every time I played it.

Patti Smith covering Prince? If you'd been blessed to see Renae's imitation of Prince dragging himself across the bathroom floor, you'd find a way to get "When Doves Cry" on the mix tape, too.

Info on the local bands included on this mix tape:

Pylon is probably my favorite 1980s Athens band, next to … well, you know. Vanessa Briscoe has one helluva voice, and they had the coolest songs. R.E.M. covered “Crazy” for the “Driver 8” B-side (I think on the “Wendel Gee” single, too); my boys did the song justice, but the original is, as always, the best.

Oh-OK, one of my faves during the Athens heyday, was founded by Linda Hopper and Lynda Stipe (yep, Michael’s sister). Linda Hopper went on to found Magnapop. Whenever I’m in the same place as Linda Hopper, she always says she recognizes me from back then, which always gives me a thrill. Be sure to listen to both tracks — and dance while you listen!

Back in the 1980s, The Jody Grind boasted the fabulous lead vocals of Kelly Hogan, who left Atlanta and went on her own a few moons ago. Ms. Hogan kicks aural ass with this version of “Peter Gunn Theme.”

If you went to high school in Georgia or our neighboring states in the 1970s, you danced your teenaged ass off to Mother’s Finest. They were the best Atlanta-based rock band during that time. It was rumored they lived together in a big house on the south side of town. Joyce Kennedy, who sings lead on “Baby Love,” went on to have a pretty good R&B career.

And, of course, The B-52’s, Cat Power’s Chan Marshall, and the adorable Michael Stipe started their music careers in Georgia.

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11 July 2007

You Leave the Blog Room for a Day …

… and the kids run amuck in your comment box. It's fun to see y’all arguing grammar points and flirting with each another. I’ll respond to your comments soon … if I ever catch up on the sleep I missed between 6:30 a.m. Monday and 10:30 p.m. Tuesday. I never sleep the night before a class — and this was the first time I’d taught a grammar course, so I was doubly nervous and (triply?) stressed.

Tuesday’s class went well. The participants liked the way I structured the class … they learned things … I got laughs and used R.E.M. in several examples … and we enjoyed some spirited grammar and word-usage arguments. I also racked up excellent evaluation scores — without dropping my pants. Your wishes and encouragement helped me get those scores.

Several of you mentioned concerns about the grammar used on your blogs and in your comments. Worry not, dear readers. While I may sneer at a poorly written corporate e-mail, I don’t sneer at blog grammar … well, not often, anyway. This is where we get to let down our syntax hair and just be ourselves. It’s the content that matters in this part of our world, not the way it’s written.

And for those of you who asked for grammar tips, keep an eye out for the launch of my Grammar Grrrl blog.

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10 July 2007

Say a Prayer for Grammar Grrrl

I’m teaching a new class — Grammar Geeks and Punctuation Punks (yeah, we be witty and creative at my place o’ biz) — in five very short hours. I developed this class to complement the business writing and technical writing classes I teach, to go in-depth on the fundamentals of writing. I'm rather stressed about today's class. Nightmares all weekend — not the "I'm wearing just underwear to class!" one, but the "I'm drawing a blank in front of the class!" one.

I’m not sure why.

I love talking about grammar and punctuation. I'm the embodiment of the geek/punk (that’s putting it nicely; I’m a grammar bully and a punctuation Nazi, to be honest). I rant and rail to my boss when a poorly written e-mail goes out to the entire organization. I kvetch about fellow communicators who use which instead of that. I mock misused commas and colons. I can recite much of the rules in the Associated Press Stylebook. Yeah, I'm a grammar bitch.

And I love an audience. I enjoy standing in front of a class, feeding off their energy, excitedly explaining prepositions and appositives, making them giggle about subjects and verbs that don’t agree.

But I don’t feel prepared.

What if my pants fall down again? The horror if I call an adjective an adverb, or if I go blank on a grammar rule! Will I confuse them when I get into collective nouns? Do you think they’ll doze off on me?

No wonder my nails are gnarled raggedy and my eyes are circled darkly.

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08 July 2007

I'd Like to Thank the Academy ...

The adorable BeckEye and the sizzlin’-hot Lulu both tapped me with this grand honor:

You don't know how thrilling it is for me to know that someone enjoys reading my ramblings on all things R.E.M., my music musings, my life's adventures. Having two people I admire tap me for a blog honor sends me into tickled giggles. And now I get to tap five worthy women.

Several of my blogging idols — including Tenacious S, Barbara Bruederlin, and everyone’s favorite MILF, Tanya Espanya — have already basked in the pink glory. There are plenty of blogging chicks who deserve the pink banner. Since I was doubly tapped, I’m cheating and bending the rules to tap six, not five:

Barista Brat was my first blog buddy. I feel like she’s my little sister. Her posts are consistently the best written, most entertaining ones I read regularly. Her life has taken some exciting turns lately and thus she’s not blogging as much, so I satisfy my cravings by rereading the Brat classics. I can’t start my day without a nonfat latte/extra shot, and I can’t start my day without her words. She’ll be published one day … and I’m going to loudly shout that I knew her when.

Katie Schwartz is that girlfriend you love spending hours with, drinking way too many cosmopolitans and spilling your juiciest dirt. She knows how to find laughter in the silliest, the naughtiest, the most painful memories. And, damn, she’s just plain f*cking funny. Tits to the nth degree, Jewgirl!

Gizmorox defines “rocking” — from her recent lyrics quizzes, to her extensive knowledge of and passion for indie music, to the way she can make an everyday incident funny and snarky and dead-on. Boys, I’ve met the girl, and she’s a cutie, too.

Ah, Mellowlee: a classy dame with a lovely heart. She went through hell earlier this year, and handled it with grace. I gained a lot of respect for her during that time. And, the Beloved Ex has had a crush on her since the Little Miss Sunshine online pageant.

Chelene is one of the girls I want to hang with if I ever make that move to NYC. She brings New York City to life for me. She's funny, a music and gossip lover, and she has excellent taste, even when shopping under the influence. And, c’mon, who doesn’t love those pigtails?

The Girl with Moxie is a newbie to my blog world, and I’ve enjoyed getting to know her. I’m dying to pepper her with all sorts of questions. Moxie's an intriguing one. She’s smart, she’s interesting, and she’s a damn good writer. There’s a lot going on behind that cape.

If you haven’t read any of the blogs I've listed, click over today. Well worth wasting those precious work hours.

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06 July 2007

Mix Tape Friday

I’ve loved mix tapes since college — making them, getting them, marveling over their brilliance. I still listen to several mix tapes Simeon made for me; he’s a brilliant mix-tapologist. I closed the cover of Love Is a Mix Tape MT-inspired once again. This time, though, I‘m not using TDKs, but my blog page. Click and groove, my friends. And check in every Friday for another mix tape special.

  • War: Summer

  • Chad & Jeremy: A Summer Song

  • Wilco: Summer Teeth

  • Style Council: Long Hot Summer

  • R.E.M.: Summer Turns to High

  • Brunettes: Summer Love

  • B-52’s: Summer of Love

  • Honeyrider: Endless Summer

  • Flaming Lips: Summertime Blues

  • Pavement: Summer Babe (Winter Version

  • Young Fresh Fellows:

  • Yo La Tengo: The Summer

  • Sly & The Family Stone: Hot Fun in the Summertime

  • Mungo Jerry: In the Summertime

  • G. Love & Special Sauce: Rhyme for the Summertime

  • Decemberists: Summersong

  • Belle & Sebastian: I Know Where the Summer Goes

  • Dean Wareham + Britta Phillips: Indian Summer

  • Death Cab for Cutie: Summer Skin

  • Twilight Singers: Summertime

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    05 July 2007

    Keith Olbermann Makes the Top 5

    Not to objectify brilliant newsmen, but I’ve always found Keith Olbermann to be a babe. Good-looking, smart, tall, well-spoken, smart-ass, funny. What else would a girl want? I like him so much, I used to watch his ESPN show on occasion — and sports bore me as a general rule. He's now the only reason I click regularly to MSNBC.

    But this week Olbermann made it to my Top 5 list, kicking Chabon to the has-been curve. Why? Because of his comments about the Scooter Libby pardon. I was going to post the video here, but two great bloggers beat me to it. Scrivener and Lulu have the YouTube replay on their blogs, so click over to see it. Scrivener includes the transcript on his post.

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    04 July 2007

    Happy Birthday, USA!

    Forget all the Scooter Libby crap for one day. Instead, cross that Peachtree finish line. Feast on hotdogs and 'cue and cold beer. Ooooh and ahhh over fireworks. Wave some tiny flags. Enjoy the day with family and friends. Remember what makes this country good.

    And take a couple of minutes to listen to Marvin.

    Jasper Johns: Flag (1954–55)

    Happy Independence Day!

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    02 July 2007

    You Want to Know More About Me?

    So it seems, even after this, and this, and this, and this, I’ve been tagged to tell you eight more random facts about me. By Write Procrastinator. Gizmorox. And (sort of) Beckeye.

    Does that mean I have to spill twenty-four beans? I must honor the blogger code, so twenty-four it is. To make it easier on you (and easier for me), I’m splitting them up by tagger: eight bookish things for Write Procrastinator, eight musical notes for Gizmorox, and eight dishy tidbits for Beckeye.

    Eight Bookish Things About Me

    1. One room in my place is literally filled with books — boxes and boxes of books, chin-high, packed alphabetically by author, of course. Rough count of thirty-two boxes, in addition to the three filled bookcases. But that’s not all; there are books in every room, even the bathrooms (quick reads).

    2. Ninety-five percent of what I read is fiction. I enjoy nonfiction — especially histories and biographies — but I guess I prefer slipping away to another world. My favorite book so far this year, though, is a memoir: Love Is a Mix Tape.

    3. When I was in fourth grade, I won the Best Haiku award for this:

    Fuji is alone
    Fuji is alone today
    Poor, poor old Fuji

    Left by all the trees
    Left by all the little birds
    Fuji is alone.

    For you non-literary types, that's about Japan's Mount Fuji. Damn, I was hawt and talented.

    4. Like every other blogger out there, I dream of becoming a celebrated author, someone to be praised by Baby Got Books. However, my fear that I’ll be less Donna Tartt/more Danielle Steel keeps the stories in my head and away from the pen.

    5. Right after this photo was taken at (sadly, now defunct) Oxford Books:

    Jack Hanna asked if I wanted to be his Atlanta girlfriend.

    6. Although I must have music playing when I’m working, when I’m driving, when I’m breathing … I like to read in a very quiet room.

    7. I have never belonged to a book club. I’d like to, I guess, but I’d hate to get in one of those groups that always picks a sucky book, or has a member who tries to be too Diane Chambers when talking about the book. I’d rather talk about a book with my friends.

    8. Two of my favorite authors read my posts about them during the last couple of months … and I have the PDF’ed Sitemeter stats to prove it.

    Eight Musical Notes About Me

    1. R.E.M. is my favorite band. (You were guessing Supertramp, weren’t you?) Wilco is quickly moving into the second slot.

    2. My dreams have soundtracks. My brain operates like my iPod on shuffle, picking random songs to play in my head as I sleep. And, like my iPod, it doesn’t always pick the best songs. Nothing worse than waking up after a night of Bon Jovi and Skynyrd.

    3. I have a not-so-secret (and innocent) crush on a blogger, in part because he sends me at least five MP3 albums every week. I’m considering marrying him, then quickly divorcing him in a dastardly attempt to gain custody of his 350+ gigs of music.

    4. Good music and a car ride can change my mood. When the Beloved Ex and I broke up, I cried on the sofa for 30 minutes … then grabbed a CD of MP3s, hopped in my car, and drove around until 2 a.m., listening to and singing along with some of my favorite songs, the sunroof open, the hair blown wild. By the time I got home, I was okay and could sleep.

    5. I once pissed off Richard Hell. We went to a showing of Smithereens at the High Museum of Art back in 1982. As my friends and I were walking out, I was talking about how I liked him in the movie, but he left me with the same urge I had for Keith Richards: I wanted to get a white washcloth and scrub his face to see how much dirt came off. Mr. Hell, who (unbeknownst to moi) was there for the showing, was walking next to us, heard me, and glared at me all the way to our car. I still feel bad about that.

    6. Of all the rockstar beaux in my dreams, Keith Richards is always the sweetest boyfriend.

    7. I’ve hugged the wee, adorable Rufus Wainwright. He opened for Roxy Music several years ago (sadly, he wasn’t wearing lederhosen), and worked his own merch table after his set. I was so excited to meet him, I couldn’t help myself. I’m sure that squealy hug was the highlight of his East Coast swing.

    8. I once kissed Warren Zevon. I’ll tell that story one day.

    Eight Dishy Morsels About Me

    1. Julia Roberts and I went to the same high school. No, I didn’t know her, but I babysat some of the girls who became friends with her at good ol’ CHS.

    2. I was on ABC Nightly News in October 1991. I got to ride in the convertible with David Justice during the city’s World Series parade, and my best friend saw the clip of me sitting next to David.

    3. I’ve made two very good friends through the blog — two friends I chat with regularly and see often (well, one lives three thousand miles away, so I see her when I can). There are, at last count, twelve bloggers I hope to meet in person one day soon.

    4. I’ve lost one good friend over a post on this blog. The post was about someone I work with (which was obvious, and she knew about that drama), but she thought I was writing about her and thus wrote me a Dear John (Jane?) letter.

    5. Jimmy Carter and his family went to our church when he was guv’nuh of this great state. One morning between Sunday school and church, I was drinking at the water fountain outside the santuary, and kept hearing my mom apologize to someone. When my thirst was quenched, I found that my little black patents had been stomping the hell out of the tips of Jimmy’s wingtips. Much to my great disappointment, the future president’s bodyguards didn’t wrestle me to the ground; I guess my twelve-year-old self wasn’t very threatening.

    6. I loved the puka-wearing David Cassidy with all my heart when I was in the sixth grade, and my mom took my sister and me to meet him. He was sitting at a table, and the weeping, screaming throng lined up to shake his hand. My sister slipped him her class photo, with our phone number on the back, but the b*stard never called.

    7. I made Mick Jagger laugh. They were filming Freejack in downtown Atlanta, on the street where I was temping that day. I grabbed my sack lunch and (with about a thousand others) went out to watch The Other Glimmer Twin. While they were setting up a shot, Mick was standing on a trailer, filming the crowd. As he panned to me, without even thinking about it, I pulled out a carrot and fellated it. Mick laughed and gave me a thumbs-up. My mother is always proud to tell that story.

    8. I can’t watch scary movies. They make me cry and I can’t sit in my theater seat. I hate waiting for something to jump out; I can’t handle that tension. That being said, I love the Evil Dead trilogy … because Bruce Campbell is a god.

    Now I’m supposed to tag others. Twenty-four of you, I guess. That’s too much work, and many of you have already completed this meme. So, if you have yet to tackle this one, get inspired by all this trivial info and post your eight interesting things.

    And if you’ve never visited the blogs of Write Procrastinator, Gizmorox, or Beckeye, do yourself a favor and stop by today.

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