It’s one more random than 10!
Sometimes when life is stressing you out, you just have to step away and get a sub sandwich. Thank you, Jimmy Johns, for knowing just what I needed.
Speaking of which, I read an Atlantic article about the expanding porkitude of the American population and how most of the ways you think you can lose weight are fool’s gold. One of the things it talked about was the problem of psychological eating: consuming food to make yourself feel better. I then found it ironic that an article about how we’re gobbling our way to a permanently fat future (and that there’s not a whole lot we can do about it) depressed me to the point where I wanted a piece of pie to feel better. And that's my problem: I love psychological eating. There is nothing that a piece of delicious fatty food cannot make better. Football? Chicken wings. Kid’s birthday party? Cake and pizza. Hot sex? Pretty much everything in Mickey Rourke’s fridge. If I have my choice between feeling great and feeling great while eating a stack of Walker Brother’s pancakes, guess what? I’m choosing “b” seven days a week and coming back for dinner on Sundays.
Which is precisely why I and so many of my fellow Americans are completely fucked unless they find a way to make broccoli taste like a hot fudge sundae, a thought so depressing it makes me want a hot fudge sundae.
1) “Different Names for the Same Thing,” Death Cab for Cutie. I have been pondering the idea of different names for the same thing as I watch my daughter learning to talk. It has to be pretty damn confusing to babies that there are different names for the same thing. Why is it “dog” and “doggie”? Or why does “kitty” refer to young cats and big cats? Why are you assholes trying to confuse me? I’m just a baby, for Christ sake!
2) “California,” Semisonic. Is there a more fucked state in the country right now than the Golden State? A state so poor I believe Moody’s is downgrading them to the Golden Showers State. It’s pretty bad when having a futuristic killing machine as your governor seems like the least of your problems.
3) “Harden My Heart,” Quarterflash. Underrated as far as one-hit wonders go. The vocals find a nice spot between Pat Bentar and The Motels, and the saxamaphone tarts up the otherwise simple music. It’s a perfect track to kick off any “fuck you” post-breakup mix-tape, which is yet another reason why it’s too bad we no longer make mix-tapes. I also wish they still made videos like this.
4) “Oh Caroline (Live),” Cheap Trick. It has to be a little odd to have your career defined by one concert. It’s one thing to be a one-hit wonder and have one song hang over you for the rest of your life. But with Cheap Trick, despite not being one-hit wonders, they are pretty much defined by one gig, to the point where their songs sound odd to me without the accompaniment of screaming Japanese girls.
5) “Inertiatic ESP,” The Mars Volta. Filed under Bands I Should Like But Don’t. My wanky prog side should guzzle this down like a Hummer slurping cheap unleaded, but I think the problem is they wank too much. Just when they find a good lick or groove or movement or whatever, they cock it up with something else, seemingly for the sake of just cocking it up. Yes, even I sometimes believe less is more.
6) “Woods,” Bon Iver. Autotune must be stopped.
7) “Making Time,” Creation. Thank you, Wes Anderson, for introducing me to this overlooked British Invasion gem. The production locks it in the 60s, but as a certain Project Runway winner would say, it’s still “fierce.”
8) “Little Secrets,” Passion Pit. I’m glad the weather is getting warmer again because this music is tailor-made for cranking while driving with the windows open. High probability of me table-dancing if I heard it in Vegas.
9) “A Pot in Which to Piss,” Titus Andronicus. From a conceptual album about the Civil War, recorded by a loud Jersey garage band whose band name references Shakespeare and whose last album referenced Festivus. Sometimes you can’t make this stuff up. Not everyone’s cup of tea but definitely mine. It’s like Ken Burns’s Civil War Block Party.
10) “Black Gold,” Southeast Engine. Almost memorable. One of those tracks that I’m happy to hear when it pops up, but not enough to seek out. A bit like Turducken: a blend of too many tastes when I would rather just have turkey. Still pretty good with gravy, though.
11) “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Queen. I’m linking to The Muppets version because it is too awesome and Libby loves it. It’s really, really difficult to combine “ridiculous” and “awesome,” but I firmly believe this is the most awesome ridiculous song of all time. Queen managed to make the rock equivalent of What’s Opera, Doc?, the famous “Kill the Wabbit” Bugs Bunny cartoon, absurd and comedic, but also skillful and epic. That’s a pretty good standard to shoot for.
Have a good weekend.