Where Do My Readers Come From?

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Top 5...Phillip Seymour Hoffman

I like movies and music and books and many other things that I can use to make myself feel cooler then you. Now while that may bother some people I am okay with it because that is who I am. At my core I am sure that I am not really cooler then anyone but when I am in the middle of listening to some music that I love or a film that has captured me completely none of that really matters. Once I surface from that little world I wonder sometimes if maybe it is too much of an escape and I would be better served too focus my energies on other non pop culture things. But that is a conversation best left for another day.

One of my favorite films of all time is "Almost Famous" it is a film that for me captures both music and the power of film together. I realize that it is not a film for everyone but for some reason it works just perfectly for me and one that I watch almost as much as both "Fight Club" and "Quadrophenia". As I was watching it today I was reminded of how much I enjoy Phillip Seymour Hoffmans work in the film as Lester Bangs. This led me to today's blog post.


5: Hard Eight

4: Boogie Nights

3: Magnolia

2: The Big Lebowski

1: The Master

I have to give special mention to two films of his that I think exist separately from the 5 above and those are 'Almost Famous' and 'Pirate Radio'. I think his performances in both of those films are just great.

Watch those previews and if you get a chance watch those films. I think you will enjoy it.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Tuesday (Misc Thoughts Edition)

Today is going to be a good day and really there is only one reason why, at least for me, and that is because the pre-season MLS games are starting and MLS.com is going to be streaming them. My chosen squad and my local MLS team the Portland Timbers are starting off against the Colorado Rapids. I am looking forward to seeing what formation the team decides to play since they have a brand new coach and their have been a lot of player changes in the off season. I haven't agreed with all of the changes, but I also felt like the team needed to make some of those changes so I am interested in seeing how the team takes shapes as they move closer to their March 3rd season opener which is at home against the NY Redbulls.

That is really about it for today. I am up and moving and that is always a plus. So I will leave you with a couple of songs that always put a smile on my face and if my ear holes could be smiling then I am sure they would be also.

Three songs. So sue me. That last video is from the ABCFamily show called 'Bunheads' and if you were or a fan of 'The Gilmore Girls' then I would recommend you check this show out. It is available on, I believe, both Amazon Prime and Netflix streaming and shown on Monday nights at 9m west coast time. I was not a fan of 'Gilmore Girls' but I really enjoy 'Bunheads' and not because it has some cute girls doing ballet. I am not sure why I like it but I really do and I have never ever cared about dancing at all. The show just works for me. Check it out.

Thursday, January 24, 2013


I am sitting here trying to fire up the energy to get really indigent about something. But, I am just not feeling it today. I have no reason that I can think of to unleash my rapier like wit on anyone or anything around me. I have a job interview tomorrow at 1:30 so hopefully that will result in some gainful employment. Things are beginning to get a little tight and even with my parents help there is an added level of stress to everything that is not beneficial at all for me.

One of the few benefits of being unemployed is that I have the time to do some reading. I like that, mainly, because I enjoy reading. I always have. There is just something about holding a book in your hands and feeling the weight of it and the smell as you turn the pages and escape, however briefly, into whatever world the book your reading exists in. I recently just finished Patrick Rothfuss 'The Name Of The Wind' it is basically a fantasy novel but is written as if the hero of the tale is telling the story if his life to a scribe. I think that is a pretty cool concept and not one that I remember seeing before. It is the first book in a series called The Kingkiller Chronicle. I have not started the second book but I am looking forward to doing so.

I decided to take a break from the world of that book, to read 'The Life of Pi' by Yann Martel. I have not seen the movie so what happened in the book was a total surprise to me. I really liked it. It was not an easy book to read on an emotional level but it was lovely and heart breaking and made me think. Those are things that I really like in a book. I highly recommend it.

I just started a book by Neal Stephenson called 'REAMDE'. This is not a typo. I am not sure fully why he decided to call it that. But anyone who has read Stephenson, knows that while he has his reasons for things they do not always make sense to the rest of us. My issues with the title aside. I am enjoying the book so far. But I am just 20 or so pages in. I am looking forward to seeing how it turns out.

Thus ends my look at literature. I hope I gave you some new ideas for reading. 

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


It is Tuesday and I am at the office (coffee shop). I am doing my usual drinking 1st my Americano and then my black coffee. To be clear it isn't always black, sometimes I add cream and Splenda to my coffee but never to my Americanos.  The other thing that I do is listen to or eavesdrop, if you well, on other customers orders.

What I do after that, concerns me a little bit. Because I often will hear someones order and then my brain makes some giant sweeping generalization about them. I mean this happens instantaneously. I can't seem to control it at all. I sit here and one part of my brain says, "Hey! You are being a jerk. You don't know that person at all. Just knock it off." Meanwhile the other part is going ahead and building a reason why those people are lame and are just worthy of my condescension.  I think my being aware of it is actually more frustrating to me then my actually doing it. It would just be easier to live a life of unawareness. Things are so much simpler when I am not second guessing myself and my motivations for my behavior.  But...I suspect, that if I was not this way then I would not be doing much blogging. Now I know some of you would say. "Good! We would all be better off." But, I don't think you would be. Think of the emptiness in your lives, if you didn't have me to dispense my nuggets of wisdom for your edification. It would be horrible for you. Actually more horrible for you then life already is. Just face it. I bring you great joy.

I have to be honest, I bring lots of people great joy. They love having me around. I think I either make their life look better  by comparison. (Wow! That blonde lady is tall and gorgeous!) Anyway, keep it together lance. Back to what I was saying...this is what happens when I am free writing. I sometimes totally lose my focus and I just did. I might have crossed the threshold where coffee becomes not so much a stimulant as a handicap because my brain is firing away and the wires are all crossed up. I should stop. But I can't! I will not and you can't make me!! COFFEE IS KING!!

Monday, January 21, 2013


a kiss is just a kiss. But a kiss in not just a kiss when we are talking the KISS!! The Monsters of Metal!! The Purveyors of Sonic Destruction!! The Master of Musical Mayhem! You wanted the best! You got the best, KISS!!

The reason I am bringing this to your attention today, is because yesterday was Paul Stanley's 61st birthday, so I thought I would bring to you my Top 3 Kiss songs that were written by Paul Stanley.

I love the bass and the drums in that song. Just love it.

I want you. Just a simple love song by a gentle man.

There is something about the last one 'I Was Made For Loving You' that I find so fun. I do not know if it is the obvious disco influence of it or what. But I really enjoy it. It is true that Kiss is kind of a joke now but there was a time when they were the hardest rocking and the biggest band in the world. There first four albums are some seriously good rock n roll. So if you like that kind of thing, hit up the You Tube and give them a listen.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

(Catchy Title) That Draws Attention To My Blog

It seems, more often then not, that once I write a blog post I spend just as much time trying to come up with some sort of catchy title that will get people to want to read my blog. But, I wonder how effective that really is or should I even care. I know that as far as labels go. That can have a difference as far what pops up on Google and the other search engines but it may still not translate to hits. It might mean that people pop in. But it for sure doesn't mean that they are going to take the time to read what I have posted. But, you can lead a horse to water. But, you can't make him drink. That is a universal truth. Or it may not be. I am not really sure actually. It is just something that I have heard people say.

Let's talk about music. As I was driving into the office (Broadway Coffeehouse) this morning I was thinking about my last post and the different bands and musicians that I had posted videos of, and I realized that I had not posted anything by one of the musicians that I most enjoy and that is Jack White. I just like how his music sounds and the fact that he seems totally unafraid to try new sounds and attempt new things with his music. So I think I am going to throw up a few videos from his numerous different projects. Enjoy them!

This song was in 'Napoleon Dynamite' but I like it anyway. Not the song above, but the song below.

I love the guitar in 'Jimmy the Exploder' but generally speaking I love how his guitar sounds in every song he plays.

 Along with the White Stripes he also played in a band called The Raconteurs and they did some amazing stuff as well. These are three songs that never fail to get my audio rocks off.
'Broken Boy Soldier'

'Old Enough'

'The Switch and the Spur'

After The Raconteurs he moved on to The Dead Weather. There is a little bit of overlap actually between all of these groups.

There you go. I hope you enjoy the tunes and maybe this will inspire you to buy some music.

Monday, January 14, 2013

If Wishes and Butts Were Candy and Nuts....

We would all have a Merry Christmas!! There is a line in the film 'Pitch Perfect' that goes like this. "If I could sing a lick, I would. But I can't and I hate myself everyday for it!"

I am not nearly as dramatic as that but there are times when I am listening to music and I feel that way about playing guitar or piano or drums or just wanting to be in a band in general and to be able to blow peoples minds. To just be up on stage and to rock their socks off with the power of my rocking! So because of that I thought it might be fun to show you guys some songs that make me feel that way. I hope you enjoy listening to them as much as I enjoy bringing them to you.

Now the first instrument I want to highlight is guitar and I am not saying that this is the best guitarist in the world or anything like that. I am just saying that listening to this makes me wish I could play guitar like that.

Let's take a look at drums now and for me this is a pretty obvious choice. But it may not be the choice for everyone else and the same rule applies as before. I am not saying this is the best, it is just the one that brings these feelings out of me. This is Santana's drummer at Woodstock he was 19 at this time and his name is Michael Shrieve and he will blow your mind. Actually the whole of this performance by the band is mind altering.

The Piano and there can be only one Ben Folds

Bass and Rush go hand in hand

There you go folks. I hope you enjoyed listening to it as much as I enjoyed bringing it too you.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

I wonder....

if it is just an American thing or perhaps a thing that is distinctly male. I wonder what makes it hard for people to say either "I was wrong" or "I do not know the answer to that, or I have not heard of that let me find someone who can answer that question for you."

Now I don't think it is a distinctly male behavior because I have seen women do the same thing. I used to be the same way. I am sure that there are times right now that I continue to act that way. But, when I am aware of it and actually taking the time to listen to the question or to actually engage in the issue at hand or the conversation. It does not bother me to just plainly say, "I did not know that" or "I don't know." It is easy and simple for me to do that and it doesn't diminish my masculinity to admit my ignorance. What brings this issue to mind for me is a couple of skits that I have seen lately on the Jimmy Kimmel show. They have been going around and asking people what they thought of events that hadn't happened yet. Now I am sure that these questions are edited because that is just the way television is. But they still had to find people who answered a question that they didn't know the answer to and would have no way of even knowing the answer.

What do you suppose led them to do that? Do you think the producer of the segment told them to just go along with the questions and answer them like they already knew the answer? It frankly wouldn't surprise me if there had been some of that because it is actually pretty funny. I just hate to be that cynical to think that they were that artificial in the creation of the segments. Though when I think about that aspect of it I am not sure why I am concerned if it was real or not. The Jimmy Kimmel show isn't a news show. Their job is to entertain and they do not claim to be anything but a show designed to entertain and if the segments make me laugh then they have succeeded in that.

We live in a time right now where it feels like it is hard to tell the difference between fiction and reality and the line between entertainment and news is growing increasingly blurred. This makes it very hard for me to not be cynical since it seems like everyone has an agenda of some sort.  So I continue to try to unpack the message behind the message when I read the news or hear a story on the radio.

 I also try to live my life in a way that doesn't hurt others and be a caring and understanding person. That for me involves me being able to say to to people, "I'm wrong" when I feel I am wrong and "I'm sorry" when I have wronged someone in one form of the other. So for me, part of that process is me making long and rambling blog posts that jump from topic to topic and really while I may have started with a goal I often lose my focus and end up in an entirely different spot then the one that I thought I was headed towards. But what I find amazing is that just the process of writing things down allows me to solve or move through whatever issue I was dealing with.

Thanks for reading this the few of you that do. I know that some posts are better then others. Which reminds me of this Smiths song even though they do not really relate at all. Have a great day folks.

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Welcome Back!!

I normally do not get all that excited when an artist retires or comes back or releases new material. But those of you who know me, know that second to the almighty Johnny Cash on my list of most favorite musical artists is the musical genius David Bowie. So I got pretty excited when I woke up and heard that in honor of his 66th birthday, David Bowie was releasing a new single and had plans for an entire new album called The Next Day which is supposed to come out in March. Here is the first single and I am going to follow that up with 5 of my favorite Bowie songs of all time.

It is going to take some more listening to articulate how I feel about the new song but I think I like it. The video feels creepy as hell but I like that as well.

On to my Top 5 list.

I hope you enjoy these as much as I do. I am fully aware that Bowie is not for everyone but I like to think that not everyone's tastes are not as refined as mine. 

Saturday, January 05, 2013

I Still Exist

Hey folks, I hope everyone is well and that the holidays treated you okay. I am still alive and functioning, but even though I wasn't working I was having a hard time finding the time to write and my blog posts suffered accordingly. So I am still functioning but most of my writing has been directed toward me making trolling attacks on AV Club and different entertainment websites that are part of the uproxx group of websites.

It isn't that I am a mean spirited troll but these sites allow me to join in discussions about a lot of things that I like in music and books and other things that I use to entertain myself. Though sometimes there are certain things that set off my nerd rage and those things must be responded to and corrected. There is no option. I must do it. I have no real choice in the matter. I am compelled to do it and must respond. The latest thing that I felt compelled to address was a discussion about the creator of 'Two and a Half Men' was a hack of not.

Myself, I come down on the side of he is a colossal hack and it does not matter to me what kind of ratings his shows have had or how many shows he has created. I think all that does is show exactly how popular mediocre television can be with the mouth breathers.