Sunday, March 27, 2011

Give And Take

I gave up meat for Lent, and for some reason I'm craving more "ethnic foods" (Mexican, Chinese, doughnuts, etc.). I don't know if the two are related, but it does make me wonder...

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

As GOB Would Say...

"Well, that's just !@#$% great."

It appears that my debit/credit card might have been "compromised," which is a clever and soft way of telling me someone (maybe) has gained access to my personal information.

They were kind enough to leave a message that a new card will be here in 7-10 days, though they offered me no suggestions on what I was to do until then.

Confession: I'm old enough to remember when using a credit card to purchase something like a bottle of Coke was considered impossibly annoying, but times have changed, and I don't carry nearly as much cash as a I used to.

Which got me thinking how different the world is going to be for my nephews.

Except for Fenway.

Another !@#$% great thing is that the two moles removed from my middle left toe has been mildly infected, leaving my already skewed and knarled toes (it's genetic I'm sure) unbelievably sore considering the size of the wound and the fact that it's just my toe.

And it itches. It really really really itches.

But at least Dice-K is pitching better.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Ash Wednesday

It's one of the few holy days from my religious tradition that has not been co-opted by Hallmark, but I do imagine it'd be hard to create a card that someone wants to buy with the theme, "Thou art dust and unto dust thou shall return."

Anyway, Lent has begun, which always takes place during Spring Training and St. Patrick's Day, so it's good thing I don't drink enough to have to give it up.

Note: My late grandfather is the one who told me about how Easter is celebrated: It's the first Sunday after the first full moon after the first day of Spring, thus explaining why it's on a different day from year to year.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

He Is A Tiger's Fan, Maybe He Likes The D-Backs Too

Chuck Klosterman, one of the Dakota's finest music writers, gave an interview to Esquire where he said, "There's a lot of great Alice Cooper songs, but not 'School's Out.' That one's too overt. It's sort of an Alice Cooper song for people who don't like Alice Cooper. The Alice Cooper songs you want to listen to are 'Cold Ethyl' and 'Under My Wheels.'"

As a native-born Phoenician who grew up in Southern California, I've always liked Coop, even when I grew out of my heavy metal early high school phase and traded my Danzig and Metallica albums for John Coltrane and the Buzzcocks.

He seemed to "get" it. Especially in light of the then-popular Marilyn Manson, who took himself so seriously that you kind of felt sorry for him. His was always destined to be a short ride. That his music wasn't any good made his future as obvious as lights on a Christmas tree.

Anyway, my uncle owned Love It To Death and Killer, and those unaware of Alice except for "School's Out" might be surprised at how good those early records are. According to his autobio, after two banal exercises in psychedelia (as was the style of the time), producer Bob Ezrin pretty much broke the band down and, like a Phoenix, what rose from the ashes was a collective that understood volume is not the same thing as power.

So yes, Chuck is absolutely right that "Under My Wheels" is a better song than "School's Out." So is "Desperado," "Black Juju," "Dead Babies," and, well, again, those first two albums after Ezrin's remake/remodel sessions are worth actually paying money for.

But, "Cold Ethyl?" That I'd never heard.

It's on Welcome To My Nightmare, which I did not own until a couple of weeks ago.

As a song, he's right: it's awesome. But, better yet, it perfectly captures why Alice is so awesome. Spoiler alert for the tamer readers: It's about necrophilia. Yes, and it's put over with just the right touch of a wink that while it will creep you out, it won't be with the feeling that he's wallowing in the subject matter with a desperate, "mommy didn't hold me enough" shtick. I mean, really, it's about necrophilia.

Like I said, he gets it.

Thursday, March 3, 2011