Sunday, April 30, 2006

The life domestic.

Tonight is going to be our first actual dinner in our house, only about a month after we moved in. We -- well, Chris -- cleared out the kitchen yesterday so that it is finally usable. Of course, all the extra kitchen appliances that were on the kitchen counters are now on the dining room table, so what we have gained in a usable kitchen we have lost in a dining room table. One of these days we'll find a rack for the corner of the kitchen and have the ability to store all this stuff in an appropriate location.

The stuff Chris is cooking tonight -- yes, he not only cleared the kitchen but is also cooking the first dinner, but don't feel too bad for him since in all likelihood I will cook most of the others, and anyway I've been doing laundry and pulling up weeds from the yard all day, and yes, I do feel defensive about this why do you ask? -- smells ridiculously good. Braised chard with onions, garlic, cilantro, and a healthy dose of smoked paprika, and red beans and rice. And now we learned what was underneath the cluster of huge leaves in the garden! We're having rhubarb compote for dessert.

Picked up the Essex Green and the Concretes albums at the advice of the thread below. You guys know how to pick them where my taste is concerned. Essex Green has been compared to Belle and Sebastian and the New Pornographers in many of the reviews that I've read, but I think I hear more Ladybug Transistor. And the Concretes are really similar to Ivy's first album. I'm happy. Next I think I'll get Jose Gonzales (besides what you've all said, I like what I've heard on KEXP) and the EP by the Little Ones.

Pretty good weekend all things considered.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Vacation therapy.

What is wrong with you people? No one gave me a single music suggestion in my most desperate hour of need (although Josh did email me about it to ask if I could send him any music suggestions I happened to receive). I can see that I'm going to have to rely on my friends at instead of you guys.

We need a vacation, so we have decided to take one. I think our current plan is to do a roadtrip to Redwood National Park by way of Crater Lake, with about 10 days for the trip overall. Filled with confidence after the music suggestions you all so lavishly provided, I am asking for yet more advice: What should we stop and see along the way? Where should we stay? How many days at Crater Lake? How many at Redwood? How many at points in the middle, and which points in the middle? We're planning to go in June.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006


I don't have an ounce of energy left, and yet I have more things to do than I can even track. The last couple of weeks have left me totally drained.

And what's the perfect antidote to that but new music purchases?

I've been woefully remiss in following up on KEXP playlists lately. I keep hearing stuff I like but then forgetting to check it out, since I'm not at my desk long enough during the workday to do more than log in, glance at email, and run to meetings. And by the time I get home I totally forget. And then I'm stuck with random dates and times in my head and I can't remember which dates go with which times and I'm randomly combing through playlists trying to make sense of them all.

Help me out here, people!

What's been released in the last few months that you're really liking? I want classic Kieranesque power pop and catchy melodies. I'll also settle for mellower stuff that might pull me back from the edge of nervous breakdown. Should the occasion arise.

Any suggestions?

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Peep show.

The Seattle Times held an art contest in honor of Easter. I think you'll like the results:

I especially like the Peep Mobile.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

The four subjects of snowcloning.

Over at, Mark Liberman and Roger Shuy have been blogging about the Four Subjects of Whatever (April 2006 archives). You know, stuff like the Four Subjects of of Kieran's Woefully Misunderstood Psyche:

1. No one understands me.
2. I don't understand anyone.
3. I understand everyone perfectly and frankly it's depressing.
4. Oh well, might as well have a bagel.

It started me thinking about how memes get started and propagated around the internet. If someone in some blog/radio show/literary journal/whatever proposes a meme, that doesn't mean it's going to catch on, even if the audience is large. But if Mark picks it up for Language Log, it's a pretty good bet that it's going to be all over the internet within a week. And it isn't just because Mark is one of the most intellectually compelling people I know (although that is true). It's because the readership of Language Log really wants to be intellectually compelled in just the sort of way that leads them to categorize, list, and taxonify in a slightly snarky way. And their audiences in turn are likely to be similarly scientizingly neurotic.

Not all audiences are similarly compelled.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

An open invitation and rebuke.

We moved this week. I am behind on life. Things we currently have include:

a rug
cable and internet

Things we currently do not have include:


But we're getting there. The house is awesome and we love the neighborhood. One thing I will not love is traffic on I-5 in the morning to get to 520. But hey, you can't have it all.

If I ever invite you over to my new house, you will do well not to thank me for the invite. Oh, you can thank me. But even die-hard descriptivists have their limits: this use of invite as a noun is an abomination. Don't give in to your baser instincts, people. Hold the line on reason.