Friday, October 31, 2008

I donated money to Barack Obama today.

I donated money to Barack Obama today.

For the first time in my life I donated money to a political campaign. And it felt really good. You can too.

Hot tix.

Hot tix.

So I have tickets to the Obama Party Tuesday. Too bad I have a girlfriend or I could really leverage them to greater use!

Scary good times offered to YOU tonight!

Scary good times offered to YOU tonight!

This will be so much fun. Do it!


P.S. If you need last minute costume ideas, we have a few good ones for you on Chicagoist.

Half Acre!

Half Acre!

I just did a Google News search on my actual real-life name and was surprised to find this!

I totally forgot I gave Lizz my thoughts on the subject recently...

Thursday, October 30, 2008

And the gaffes just keep coming.

And the gaffes just keep coming.


Here's what drives me nuts ... even as I keep seeing the McCain campaign fall apart in front of everyone's eyes, even as the primary focus of McCain's campaign is to attack Obama with ludicrous claims instead of offering any substantive messaging of its own, even as I see McCain trade in every last shred of dignity because he SO wants the White House ... there's still a good chance he will win next Tuesday. How is that even possible?

It's driving me absolutely crazy.

I can assure you that this will NOT happen.

I can assure you that this will NOT happen.

My little brother sent me this video. I ALWAYS vote. Hell, i even vote whether or not to retain judges ... it's everyone's civic duty!

Don't forget that this Tuesday.

Real American heroes ... to me!

Real American heroes ... to me!

Long story short. Two bands asked me to book a show for them this week. Subterranean was kind enough to give us a date, and hen both bands backed out.

And I was, like, crap!

Luckily for me, three fabulous groups were willing to come to my -- and the venue's -- rescue at the very last minute. I think these folks are incredibly awesome, and hope you can make it out to catch some music tonight. I mean, you want to see some original tunes before a weekend dominated by cover bands, right?

Won't you please join us tonight?

TONIGHT

Thursday, October 30

Tankboy presents:
tenniscourts
Shrieking Violet
The Johns Are Democrats

Doors: 8:30pm
Show: 9:00pm
Cover: $7
21+

Subterranean
2011 N Avenue

Thanks ahead of time for supporting live local music!

There's hope for our country yet.

There's hope for our country yet.

Truly non-partisan.

She sings about Oasis AND Blur!

She sings about Oasis AND Blur!

Aside from this track, I'm not a big fan of Amanda Palmer's new album.

That said, this track is so good, it might be reason enough to buy the whole disc anyway. This song has been in high rotation in my DJ sets the last few months.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Halloween Party!

Halloween Party!

I don't know about you, but I prefer Halloween parties to Halloween shows. I've been stuck going to more shows of band performing as other bands on Halloween than I care to remember. It can be good fun, but I'm kind of burned out on it. So this year, when my friend Josh asked if I'd be interested in contributing music to his Halloween loft party I said HELLZ YES! Check out the flyer:


Notice it says "Fuck [comma] Halloween." Some folks have read it and thought we were throwing an anti-holiday party, which could not be further from the truth. In fact it should be read as "Fuck [pause for dramatic effect] HALLOWEEN!" ending with a big smile.

Costumes are encouraged. Good times will be had. See you these?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Loving / Hating Of Montreal.

Loving / Hating Of Montreal.

I review last night's Of Montreal show on Chicagoist today. I'm hoping their fans don't lynch me. I tried to make the case for the band's strengths, but there was an emotional vapidness to the proceedings that really bothered me, so I'm hoping I was able to outline those concerns fluidly and in a way that is not viewed as some sort of attack on the band. I think they're good at what they do, I'm just not certain their fans are seeing what they're actually delivering.

Monday, October 27, 2008

This should be posted on telephone poles around Wicker Park Humboldt Park.

This should be posted on telephone poles around Wicker Park Humboldt Park / Logan Square.

Rules most of us learned long ago: Tips For Clueless People Who Get Mugged. Play super close attention to sentences 3 and 4 in the first paragraph and you probably will never need the rest of the article. Probably.

Three Ways to guarantee I will NOT to review your album.

Three Ways to guarantee I will NOT to review your album.

I'm all about digital delivery of albums. It saves the labels money. It saves publicists money. It saves bands money. But if you're sending me an album digitally in hopes of me writing about the disc or previewing an upcoming show, do NOT:
  • Encode it at 128 kbps or less.
  • Only offer to me as a stream.
  • Have a robotic voice repeat the name of the album, or my name, every 20 seconds over every song.
Thanks. And yes, I am unusually grumpy this morning ... but the rules above still stand.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

I'm DJing at Jerry's tonight.

I'm DJing at Jerry's tonight.

Come see me! 1938 W Division!

And now, my favorite Saturday Night Live Digital Short of all time.

Um, wow.

Um, wow.

I SO wish I could have been there.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Obama Bowie.

Obama Bowie.

Oh you pretty thing.

Fucking hell.

Fucking hell.

The garage I usually use want to charge me over a grand to fix my car to pass the emissions test. My car isn't worth $1000!

I am seriously considering just selling it or donating it. Thanks fucking State of Illinois, and thank you Mayor Daley for getting your cops to ticket my car almost daily. This is such a fucking scam ... my car passed the emissions test last November so why am I even getting tested again, and why does it suddenly not pass? Plus, the state should allow you to renew your registration with the understanding that you'll get the car up to par within 6 months or something. The way it's set up now, folks that like paycheck to paycheck -- or like me are/were unemployed -- have no chance of fixing the car and merely rack up more debt as the parking tickets pile up.

Fuck.

When you think of John McCain, think of me ... George W. Bush.

When you think of John McCain, think of me ... George W. Bush.

On one hand, I'm gonna miss this minor resurgence of Saturday Night Live's recapturing of the cultural zeitgeist ... on the other hand -- post November 5 -- I hope I never have to see any of these impersonations ever again.

Pigs Fly Pt. II.

Pigs Fly Pt. II.


To help sooth Nora's what must be almost paralytically stunning sense of disbelief over a recent Tweet of mine, I hereby offer for your aural perusal The Teenagers' unmistakenly genius rework of Britney Spears' otherwise nigh unlistenable "Womanizer." Link provided via the excellent Musique Magnifique.

MP3: Britney Spears "Womanizer (The Teenagers Remix)"

The Teenagers photo by Meg Bourne

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Living the high life.

Living the high life.

Last night I realized that I tend to attend sporting events via private boxes or kick ass corporate seats. This is not because I'm a pampered S.O.B., but is instead a byproduct of the fact that I am not really a sports kind of guy, and the only way to really get me to go to games is through enticements such as those. Basically I'm there for the amenities, not the game.*

This came to me as I was sitting in an Executive Suite at the United Center watching the Blackhawks play as I munched on a cookie from the dessert cart, trying to find a place for it in my stomach amongst all the free hot dogs and beer I had already consumed.

Hee!

*This is not 100% true. For some odd reason I really do enjoy going to Cubs games at Wrigley Field for some reason. I think it's just hardwired into me.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Overdoing it and doing it well.

Overdoing it and doing it well.

Every day at the gym I do 20 minutes on the elliptical machine and 10 minutes on the treadmill for my cardio. I'm getting older so I try not to run too much for fear of hurting my knees or something like that. Well, yesterday all the elliptical machines were full so I started on the treadmill, and decided to just keep going and run for 30 minutes. I was actually surprised by how easy it was and how fast I was going. I only stopped because I have to stick to a strict schedule so I can get to work on time. After that, I did some weight work with my legs and decided to increase the weights I use quite a bit. I was feeling pretty superhuman. I was feeling no pain.

Until today.

Whoa do my legs hurt! I guess I overworked some muscles that aren't used to that heavy a workout. I'm walking like a little ol' granny.

Owie.

Dang!

Dang!

The one bummer about being employed: I won't get a full paycheck until the middle of next month, but the fact that I now have a steady income means I get no more unemployment money from the state. Not even for the last week I wasn't working (and had no income ... sorry, inside joke to any who have a had to do the biweekly phone check-in with IDES). You know what that means? Betty the Beagle and I will be sharing meals together until mid-November!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Breaking it down for Joe Sixpack ... and me.

Breaking it down for Joe Sixpack ... and me.

After Fareed Zakaria explained that the bright side of the current world financial mess is that it will finally cause people to fix their irresponsible fiscal behavior in favor of better savings habits, Stephen Colbert had this to say:
So it's like the guy who says, "It's great that I caught my wife cheating on me because it made me start going to the gym."
I think we've found a new financial reporter who can break it down into plain english for the people!

Dying to know...

Dying to know...

...who is behind this.

So jealous of anyone who gets in to see this!

So jealous of anyone who gets in to see this!

Small club. Original line-up. Damn!

Gym crushes.

Gym crushes.

Everyone has gym crushes, right? You know when you go in at a certain time of the day, all of the time, and you sort of have a group of "regulars" there the same time you are? In that group isn't there one or two members of the opposite sex you always kind of look at thinking, "Hm, they're cute, and if we were at a show / bar / club / church fish fry maybe I would walk over and say hi." Of course I would never actually walk over and say hi -- unlike some I view gyms as places boys and girls can work out with out having to worry about undue social interaction -- so these crushes are always based in the understanding that they always remain hypothetical, which is why I seem to always have them whether I'm single or taken. I've always wondered if other folks have them too, and if so, if they operate on the same internal rules as my "gym crushes" do i.e. more of a mental distraction than anything else.

Suzi Quatro in my dreamz.

Suzi Quatro in my dreamz.

I had a dream last night where I was at a Suzi Quatro show and she sang this awesome song. I woke up trying to remember the lyrics so I could find a copy of it until I realized it was a song from a dream and didn't actually exist. Dammit!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Week two!

Week two!

Well, still getting used to waking up at 5:30 a.m. regularly, but I'm adjusting pretty quickly. That still doesn't mean I've got the ol' brain fully up and running yet, so for today please enjoy this completely random LOLdog picture*. Thanksies.


*O.K., not so random, actually. I picked it because it reminded me of playing Dungeons & Dragons. Twenty-five years ago.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Um.

Um.

According to the NYT:
“The response from Senator Obama and his campaign yesterday was to attack Joe,” Mr. McCain said. “People are digging through his personal life, and he has TV crews camped out in front of his house. He didn’t ask for Senator Obama to come to his house. He wasn’t recruited or prompted by our campaign. He just asked a question. And Americans ought to be able to ask Senator Obama tough questions without being smeared and targeted with political attacks.”
Wait, I'm pretty sure McCain's mention of Joe is what brought the TV crews to Joe's house, not Obama.

Pigs take flight.

Pigs take flight.

The Chicago Tribune, a paper that has not endorsed the Democratic Nominee for President since 1872, just threw their support behind Barack Obama. That's how pitiful John McCain has become ... even the Trib can't find a reason to vote for him!

In light of Pontiac closing...

In light of Pontiac closing...

A commenter at Chicagoist directed me towards this classic nugget.

Around the web.

Around the web.

What do busy writers do when they’re too busy to write? Bullet point!

  • Erin and Scott are getting married. They are both ex-Chicagoists and they are both rather comfortable with the spotlight, so it’s no mystery that they are featured in the wedding issue of Time Out Chicago. I’m sure it doesn’t hurt that Scott is the web editor for the magazine. Heh.
  • I loved Bedhead back in the day, so it makes sense that I’d like The New Year … but I didn’t think I’d like them this much. Go see them at The Empty Bottle tonight.
  • I’ve mentioned it before, but the new Secret Machines kicks major guitar thundering ass.
  • It’s the last three days of The Pontiac … make sure you stop in and give the place a proper send-off sometime this weekend. I think it could be argued that the bar’s heyday coincided with the time I convinced Buddy – the owner – that Live band Karaoke would be a good idea (and it could probably be argued that band’s presence went a long way towards sustaining the bar as long as it did). I could write a book about the good times I’ve had there, and how much I’m going to miss it, but I won’t … primarily because I’d feel guilty sending that many people to jail for all the fun we had. (I say that not because we actually broke the law, but because it should be illegal for people to enjoy themselves that much!)
  • Obama Mix 1 and Obama Mix 2.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

He's back!

He's back!

And by "he," I mean me. And by "back," I mean DJing at Liar's Club tonight from 10 p.m. until 2 a.m. Preceding my set will be a listening party for the new album from The Tossers. Let's make a full night of it!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

I scooped Lupe Fiasco!

I scooped Lupe Fiasco!

I wrote this on Chicagoist during my lunchtime. And then Lupe posted this:


Yeah, I'm sure he didn't do it because of me at ALL, but I am pretty sure I had my news on the web before he did! I've actually known about the signing for over a month now, but didn't want to say anything until it was final. I noticed someone from the Fiasco camp touting the band as Lupe's proteges (which they really aren't) so I took the educated guess that the deal was final.

Lupe, you've got some good taste.

It's kind of a cop out post, but addresses an actual concern.

It's kind of a cop out post, but addresses an actual concern.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

So far, so good!

So far, so good!

Well, I've pinched myself a couple of times over the last two days, but apparently I am NOT dreaming ... I do in fact have a super cool job. I've already leapt into my first project and am really enjoying it while getting to know the other members on my team. Usually it takes a few days to get the feeling that you're fitting in and doing the right thing, but I'm already getting that sort of positive reinforcement and feedback from the people around me. It's so terrific to be working in such a vibrant, creative environment.

Unfortunately for you, dear reader, that means my posts here may be shorter than usual until I get back in the habit of writing at 5 a.m. again. Right now I'm busy editing Chicagoist posts before and after work -- while still trying to generate some of my own private writing -- so it'll probably take me a week or so to get everything aligned and chugging nicely along. So please bear with me!

And now, to the right, Pickle the Bunny-kitten.

Monday, October 13, 2008

First day of "school."

First day of "school."

On a break from orientation but everything is already very exciting!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Keeping up with our wild economy.

Keeping up with our wild economy.


I'm sure you've all downloaded last week's This American Life (#365: Another Frightening Show About Money), where they simply and succinctly explain just what the current financial crisis is and how we got into this mess, right?

Well, once you've listened to and digested that, I highly recommend subscribing to the Planet Money podcast since they've doing an excellent job at deciphering day-to-day developments. My favorite lately is their discovery that the government has the power to buy a bank's bonds due to some really smart language included in the bail-out bill.

BONUS: If you still don't understand the subprime mortgage dealie, this episode explains that nicely as well. These are scary times, but they're a lot less scary if you get informed and get a grasp on what's actually happening.

Image via MSN Money

The ELITE program rocks!

The ELITE program rocks!

Very funny stuff, this.


In completely unrelated news, I posted galleries of Radiohead at this year's Lollapalooza and Battles at Double Door if you're interested in perusing either collection. I'm especially fond of the Battles photos, if you're only going to pick one or the other to look at.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Geeky -- but cute -- Beagle.

Geeky -- but cute -- Beagle.

Blue-eyed soul or techno-groover ... make up your mind! Actually, please don't.

Blue-eyed soul or techno-groover ... make up your mind! Actually, please don't.


GalPal convinced me to go see Jamie Lidell last night and I'm glad she did, although I'm still not entirely sure what to make of him. You can read my take on the show and see some photos here ... and you can view all my photos of the evening here. Anyone else out there have thoughts on this guy?

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Votez.

Votez.


I'm registered, are you? Chicagoans can check here.

MSTRKRFT SPR FN!

MSTRKRFT SPR FN!

I had a blast at MSTRKRFT last night. GalPal felt she was sucked back in time. Does this mean I refuse to grow up or that she's lost touch with dance culture? Who cares?!

See all my photos from last night.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Um, Iceland might go bankrupt?

Um, Iceland might go bankrupt?

O.K., now it's time to panic. I keep saying to myself the markets will right themselves given enough time, and my long term investments will end up being just fine ... but we've now entered the realm of the seriously fiscal surreal.

The Weez.

The Weez.

I still think this should have been the first single. Anyway, it's nice to see Rivers seems to actually -- finally -- be having some fun nowadays.

Are we human, or are we dancer?

Are we human, or are we dancer?

What the hell does that mean? Aw, who cares ... while I'm one of three people that actually liked Sam's Town I'm very excited to see The Killers've gone back to their Duran Duran new wave roots.

In other news, Rachael Yamagata's new album came out today. It's good. It's supposed to be a "double album" but is in fact a moody album with an EP's worth of upbeat tracks tacked onto the end. The front-end of the album will bum you out, but it does it so blissfully you'll love wallowing in the misery. The ending tracks are like a bracing dip into a crisp, clear pool that pulls you out of the deep darkness that precedes them.

Tonight's rilly big shoe? MSTRKRFT at Double Door. I'm so happy they moved this from Metro since it means a) no little kids and b) MSTRKRFT in a room as small as Double Door! Wahoo! It's bound to be absolutely insane. If you like either dance music or rock music, you do not want to miss this.

And finally, the news crossed my desk last night that Pontiac is closing. Rumor has it the Violent Hour folks bought the lease from Buddy. I hope so since that means there's some chance the space will at least be taken over by a cool bar, but even in a best case scenario we've lost one of the few cool rock and/or roll bars in the city.

Photo: MSTRKRFT

Monday, October 06, 2008

Prep!

Prep!

Since this is my last week of unemployment, I've decided to start training for re re-immersion in the 9-to-5 world. That mean going to bed earlier, getting up earlier, getting all my RSS reading in before 8:30 a.m., early morning writing; but I'm also getting in a few decadent pleasures like watching DVDs without guilt during the day while I still can.

Anyone out there have other suggestions on how to prep or waste time in these last few days?

Friday, October 03, 2008

Friday Afternoon Cute.

Friday Afternoon Cute.

Someone wanted to say hi.

Spent.

Spent.

Last night was pretty dead at Liar's Club due to the debate and the Cubs game, but JB and I still played our A-game in the DJ booth. And then, of course, I went out afterward because I was so excited about my new job ... so this A.M. I'm considering a) a trip to the gym to repair the damage done last night and b) a trip to Culver's for Butterburger to undo the good work I'll have done at the gym.

UNRELATED:
Sarah Palin. Really? You think she did well even though she didn't directly answer a single question? What?!

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Homer in '08!

Homer in '08!

Guess what?

Guess what?

I am no longer unemployed. In fact I was so excited when I was offered the job I accepted right away even though I know you're supposed to wait a day or so. But, honestly, after meeting so much of the team I will be working with when I interviewed yesterday, I realized what a perfect fit this place is going to be with me.

I am very excited.

Yamagonnagitchoo.

Yamagonnagitchoo.


My apologies to a) the security staff last night since I was kinda drunk and couldn't for the life of me figure out how to turn off my flash b) the audience since Rach interrupted her show to talk to me (yipes!) but to be fair we haven't seen each other in years so that's that c) HeaveMedia Lisa since she was kind enough to buy me a shot and thenI had to run and shoot d) Rach, in case my errant flash blinded you at any point, and I'm also sorry I went down too early to hang out with you late night.

Aside from all of that, it was a really great night, and I was so happy to see Rach!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Bad beagle!

Bad beagle!

I think this SofĂ­a might be related to Betty the Beagle ... but don't any of you show this to Betty and give her any ideas!


Thanks to Lauren for sending me the clip, I think