Thursday, January 26, 2012

Winter

Can we just for a second stop and talk about how great this song is? 

It's stuck in my head almost every day.  The Dodos will never have a chance with me because they will never make a song this good again.  Just songs that kind of sound like this song.  Which make me want to listen to this song again. 

Friday, January 20, 2012

My Parents Are Idiots

I guess I have long been harboring thoughts that I would one day invite my parents to view/use this blog. I don't know why.  I just thought it might happen some day.  So I have tried to curtail the cursing/writing about things that they might find inappropriate.  But both of my parents are acting like dipshits, so I'm just going to write this.  All quotations are actually paraphrased.

Mom:

Even though my mom lives in North Carolina, she continually tries to manage things in this city.  She really wants me to get Edith over to see Grandma.  I don't really mind this.  I know I have to take her over there from time to time, and I like visiting with her, and giving her the chance to see Edith.  But this is how it goes:

Tuesday:
Mom:  "You should really get Edith over to see Grandma.  She hasn't seen her since xmas."
Me:  "Wow.  That has been a long time.  I'll try and get her over there soon."

Wednesday:
Mom (in with email about other stuff): "When do you think you'll be able to get Edith over there."
Me:  "Oh - I'm hoping to take her over on Thursday.  Chelsey is hanging out with a friend that night."

Thursday:
Mom:  "Have you been able to confirm whether you are going over to Grandma's tonight?  I can let her know."
Me:  "Well we'll see.  The temperature has dropped like 10 degrees.  Chelsey might not want her going out tonight."
Mom:  Completely understand.  Just let me know and I'll let Grandma know."

(Mind you, at no point in all this do I have an intentions of letting Mom know so she can let Grandma know.  Because that is dumb.  I can just call her before I head over.  She's not the Queen of England.  There's nothing to schedule.)

Later Thursday:
Mom:  "I went ahead and told Grandma you might be coming, depending on the weather."
Brent (in my head):  "Well that settles it.  We're not visiting." 

And we didn't.

Dad:

While he was in town for xmas, we had talked about his getting my mom and iphone for her birthday.  Nothing set in stone.  No biggie.  So last week or so, I follow up with an email to my dad and include Wendy and Chuck -

"Hey Dad, do you think you are going to get mom an iphone?  If so, let me know.  I'd like to get her some accessories for it." 

This turns into a lengthy discussion about mom and technology among us siblings, with very limited input from Dad.  He ends up saying "I will think about it, and get back to you."

Totally fine.

So yesterday is ten days before Mom's birthday.  So I send a follow-up email.  "No pressure, but it's getting close, and wondering if you've made a decision."  Nothing in return. 

I understand if he doesn't want to do it, or hasn't made up his mind.  But not responding at all?  This I do not understand. 

So as per usual, I have a mom who wont leave me alone, and a Dad who can't be bothered.  Idiots.



 

Thursday, January 19, 2012

mad men


I am feverishly trying to make it through all of the previous four seasons of Mad Men in advance of the new season. Going into it I had only watched two episodes, but somehow I knew enough to make my two count - I had watched the episode where they decide to form a new agency and the episode where they try to come up with an idea for Samsonite. Anyway, here are some of my opinions:

Favorite character: Probably Peggy, but I do like the Pete-centric episodes quite a bit.

Favorite episode: The Suitcase

Favorite moment: the conversation between Don and Peggy when she is in the hospital after giving birth to her baby and he's like, you gotta get out of here.

Favorite extramarital partner of Don's. The store owner in season one. I think her name was Rachel.

Hope for the future: Give Betty something to do more than just hanging out with dopey husband of hers and being mean to her kids. Also I want the group of oddballs Don meets in California to show up again.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

MLK


Something like this.
In honor of Martin Luther King Day, I started reading his autobiography.  My main hesitation with that guy is that he always seems so serious.  Always working on a cause.  Always saying something important.  I"m hoping there is some comedy in this thing.  So far, no good. 


Just a lot of talk about growing up in Atlanta, and being a member of a religious family and having a dad who was a badass.  He also calls his father "Daddy," which I am never ready for.  It shouldn't be a problem that grown men use the term Daddy.  And yet it is.  Unless it's in a song called "Patches."


I did find out that he did have a moment when he was like 12, when he questioned his faith.  Then he got that taken care of, and he was good to go. 


I'm also looking forward to quotes like this one from a speech.


Discrimination is a hellhound that gnaws at Negroes in every waking moment of their lives to remind them that the lie of their inferiority is accepted as truth in the society dominating them.
Who uses hellhound in a sentence? Even when they write speeches?  That guy could really put words together. 

On a related note, I am reading it on my phone, having downloaded it from the Omaha Library website.  Pretty cool, right?  Maybe not so much.  I took a solid hour to get it all configured on my phone.  And you only get it for a week. 

Who reads a book in a week?

Thursday, January 12, 2012

I ordered Chelsey a new Saints shirt.

I possibly like it better than she does.


The New Black Keys Album is Lousy

Here is how The Black Keys have gone for me. 

In like 2004, Chuck and I saw them at the old Sokol Underground here in Omaha.  It was a tiny venue.  They played their instruments really loudly.  My ears rang for like 5 days after.  It was probably the loudest show I have ever attended.  But it was also a little repeptitive, and I don't remember wanting to buy an album afterwards.

Then I didn't listen to them for a really long time. 

Fast forward.  My co-worker Erin told me their show at the fancy new Slowdown was sold out in 2009.  I was shocked.  I had no idea they were so well-loved.  So I got that album.  Attack and Release.  I liked the first song and a few others.  But I couldn't listen to the album beginning to end, because it was too repetitive. 

Then Dan Aurbach put out a solo album which was supposed to let him do stuff that was outside the confines of The Black Keys.  The first song sounded exactly like The Black Keys, so I figured I didn't need any more of that. 

2010 brought Brothers.  Finally an album for Brent.  Extra instruments.  Extra parts.  More variety.  Terrific.  I saw them again that year.  But this time it was outside, and I know this is going to sound crazy, but I felt like they were kind of channeling early Elvis Presley that night.  Which I'm pretty sure was almost entirely because I was reading "Last Train to Memphis," Peter Guralnick's biography about Presley's early career.  Either way, it felt otherworldly, in the way I think of early Elvis. 

So I thought maybe The Black Keys and Brent were finally getting it together.  Chelsey liked the singer, I liked the drummer, so if we decided to double-team them, there would be no quibbling. 

And then they put out this piece of crap called El Camino.  I didn't really listen to it that much last year.  It came out late, and I was trying to listen to a bunch of other music by the end of the year.  But it really doesn't bear additional listening.  It's just bad.  Repetitive as all hell, and for some reason they've added female backup vocals. 

Let this be a lesson for all of you.  Alterna-blues rehash is only going to get you so far.  Even if you are pretty good at it.  But female backup singers are always a bad move.  Always.

Wreckless Baby


Friday, January 6, 2012

Saints Start Playoff Run

I try not to make my blog too Saintsy, because who really cares?  But the playoffs are starting.  Which means I'm going to be a nervous wreck until it's all over.  Here are my concerns regarding this week's game against the Detroit Lions

1) When they played the Lions earlier this year, they were helped out by a long list of Lions penalties and they didn't have Ndamukong Suh playing.

2) The Saints played really really bad in their playoff opener last year.

3) In interviews this week, the Saints keep talking about regaining their 2009 form.  Whenever they did that in 2010, they lost the following game. 

4) It's hard to beat the same team twice.

5) I recently discovered that I project my own mental fragility and nervousness onto the teams I cheer for, which means that I assume they are in a fragile and nervous state right now. 

Last year I got major super drunk during their one and only playoff game.  I'm really going to try and do better this year.  But if they start to go downhill, I predict that resolution to follow right after. 

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Chuck's 2011 List of Books Read/Movies Watched





Kent and Brent's Top 20 Tracks (kind of)

So Kent and I make two lists.  We make a list of 20 songs that doesn't allow us to repeat artists more than once.  And we make a list of 50 songs where we can repeat artists as much as we please.  Kent also has some weird weighting that he does, like if we list two songs from the same artist - even though they aren't the same song - they get a bonus since we both listed them.  This is the composite list of our no-repeat lists.

I'm sure no one cares about this but Kent and I.  But at least you can easily listen to them...


Monday, January 2, 2012

Brent's Top 20 2011 Tracks!

In handy mixtape form!  Thanks Leslie for the Everyone's Mixtape tip.


  TOP 20

Name                                 Artist               Album 

1.  Rolling In The Deep                Adele                21    

2.  Go Outside                         Cults                Cults

3.  My Mistakes                        Eleanor Friedberger  Last Summer

4.  The Words That Maketh Murder       PJ Harvey            Let England Shake

5.  Sadness Is a Blessing              Lykke Li             Wounded Rhymes      

6.  Wicked Games                       The Weeknd           House of Balloons   

7.  Two Cousins                        Slow Club            Paradise            

8.  We Need a Myth                     Okkervil River       I Am Very Far       

9.  The Last Goodbye                   The Kills            Blood Pressures     

10. Dirty Mister Dirty                 Generationals        Actor-Caster        

11. Lovers Lane                        Hunx & His Punx      Too Young To Be In Love

12. Serve the People                   Handsome Furs        Sound Kapital       

13. Would You Say Stop?                Acid House Kings     Music Sounds Better with You

14. I Miss My Friend                   Madeline             Black Velvet        

15. Shangri-La                         YACHT                Shangri-La          

16. New Year's Eve                     Tom Waits            Bad As Me           

17. California                         EMA                  Past Life Martyred Saints

18. Every Night My Teeth Are Falling Out      The Antlers          Burst Apart         

19. Tina Said                           Those Darlins        Screws Get Loose    

20. Mr. Know It All                    Kelly Clarkson       Stronger



TOP 50

Name                                 Artist               Album 
1.  Rolling In The Deep                Adele                21    
2.  Go Outside                         Cults                Cults
3.  My Mistakes                        Eleanor Friedberger  Last Summer
4.  The Words That Maketh Murder       PJ Harvey            Let England Shake
5.  Sadness Is a Blessing              Lykke Li             Wounded Rhymes      
6.  Wicked Games                       The Weeknd           House of Balloons   
7.  Two Cousins                        Slow Club            Paradise            
8.  We Need a Myth                     Okkervil River       I Am Very Far       
9.  The Last Goodbye                   The Kills            Blood Pressures     
10. Dirty Mister Dirty                 Generationals        Actor-Caster
11. Love Out of Lust                   Lykke Li             Wounded Rhymes      
12. Lovers Lane                        Hunx & His Punx      Too Young To Be In Love
13. Serve the People                   Handsome Furs        Sound Kapital       
14. Would You Say Stop?                Acid House Kings     Music Sounds Better with You
15. I Miss My Friend                   Madeline             Black Velvet
16. Hanging from a Hit                 Okkervil River       I Am Very Far       
17. Shangri-La                         YACHT                Shangri-La
18. Ten-Twenty-Ten                     Generationals        Actor-Caster        
19. New Year's Eve                     Tom Waits            Bad As Me           
20. California                         EMA                  Past Life Martyred Saints
21. Every Night My Teeth Are Falling Out     The Antlers          Burst Apart  
22. Parentheses                        The Antlers          Burst Apart         
23. Bumper                             Cults                Cults               
24. Tina Said                          Those Darlins        Screws Get Loose    
25. Mr. Know It All                    Kelly Clarkson       Stronger
26. Rich Kids Blues                    Lykke Li             Wounded Rhymes      
27. Do I Have Power                    Timber Timbre        Creep on Creepin' On
28. Most Wanted                        Cults                Cults
29. Bury Me Standing                   Handsome Furs        Sound
30. Get Some                           Lykke Li             Wounded Rhymes
31. Victory Dance                      My Morning Jacket    Circuital    
32. You Know What I Mean                Cults                Cults
33. I Promise                          Generationals        Actor-Caster
34. Let England Shake                  PJ Harvey            Let England Shake
35. Someone Like You                   Adele                21
36. Two Lovers                         The Rural Alberta Advantage Departing           
37. Your Past Life as a Blast         Okkervil River       I Am Very Far
38. No Widows                          The Antlers          Burst Apart
39. Under Cover of Darkness           The Strokes          Angles
40. Damn These Vampires                The Mountain Goats   All Eternals Deck
41. Where I'm Going                    Cut Copy             Zonoscope
42. Shake It Out                       Florence & The Machine     Ceremonials
43. You Say It Too                     Generationals        Actor-Caster
44. The Curse of Being Young          Hunx & His Punx      Too Young To Be In Lo
45. Inn of the Seventh Ray            Eleanor Friedberger  Last Summer  
46. Goshen                            Beirut               The Rip Tide        
47. Holdin' On To Black Metal         My Morning Jacket    Circuital           
48. Wake and Be Fine                   Okkervil River       I Am Very Far
49. To Have in the Home                Woods                Sun & Shade 
50. Tell Me                            Tom Waits            Bad As Me (Deluxe)