Thursday, March 30, 2006 at 14:03:06 (EST)

You hoped that they'd die long before they might see

I don't know if I can recommend slogging all the way through New York Magazine's article "Up with Grups" (whose title is so dumb they came up with a mildly better one, "Forever Youngish," for the cover). But somewhere in its sprawling, somewhat unfocused rap, it covers some interesting points. Well, interesting for the 30-something white dude who wonders why there aren't more people his age present when he's standing in Tommy's Tavern watching USAISAMONSTER. The article purports to characterize a 'new' type of a adult, one who clings to the trappings of 'youth culture' even though underneath those 'hip' clothes they are responsible adults with solid careers, children, and, perhaps, a "mild paunch.".

The article sort of wants to stay on the fence, though ultimately the author seems to show his hand and count himself one of 'them.' I can't help using all the ironic quote marks, but honestly the whole thing seems made up. There is a school of thought afoot telling us that the Generation Gap has been erased, apparently because teenagers and adults alike have been united by their love of, guh, Bloc Party and hooded sweatshirts. I'm comfortably certain that quite a few kids growing up when I did really loved the Beatles, and there was a time when it seemed the Izod Corporation would have us all in those lovely pastel knit shirts. And yet that parental-offspringal connection continues to elude us even now.

The article veers into mildly critical territory when it discuss how these folks are raising their kids. You get the picture of a nation of toddlers being reared on Sufjan Stevens records and 'cute' baby-sized Ramones t-shirts, and for a second you think, "They just wanna raise clones of themselves!" But then you stop for a second and realize that's exactly what every parent throughout human history has pretty much done (with a little help from Gammy and Dr. Spock). Sure, not everybody turns out perfect, but most of us take our parents' embarrassingly bad taste in stride. So shall the wee hipsters. In fact (and the article does point this out), there's a real fear that the kids will 'rebel' into, guh, conservative Republicanism just to 'get back' at the parents (otherwise known as "The Alex P. Keaton Effect"). Yeah, that'll probably happen too. But again, that's yet another thing that's happened since society got industrialized enough for sullen teenagers to sneer, "I'll never be like you, Mom and Dad!"

So adults like contemporary music and their kids will probably turn out all right, if a little annoyed at having to hear about the Dark Ages of bulky cassette Walkmen. As far as society goes, this sounds like business as usual, if a little dressed up this time around. Just because someone thinks a 40-year old looks foolish in a pair of Chuck Taylors, that doesn't mean it will have a profound effect on society. I think the kids will still find ways to be alienated. In fact, can you think of anything that would alienate a kid faster than a parent smugly assuming they're on the same wavelength? Oh god, that's enough to make me weep for those poor future generations.

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Wednesday, March 29, 2006 at 14:28:29 (EST)

You know you might miss a shot

I've never really thought of New York as a dangerous place since I've lived here. Sure, when I hear about the city in previous decades it sounds like it was a lot rougher. But in this post-Internet Boom land o' hipsters there seems little to fear. I mean, houses on my block are selling for over a million dollars! My neighborhood is full of white suburban transplants who depressingly resemble me in nearly every way. This doesn't seem like the place that spawned "Crack Ave" (Grand Ave) and "Murder Ave" (Myrtle Ave) ... especially considering Murder Ave now sports a Connecticut Muffin shop.

Even though I and pretty much everyone I know in the neighborhood has at one time or another been mugged or otherwise roughed up in the past, it still didn't seem too scary, at least not compared to the stories we heard about the Real Crime going on in further hoods like Bushwick or East New York. Last night Motico performed over at Sputnik, the newish club on the edge of Clinton Hill/Bed-Stuy. Just before the show started, around the time when my girlfriend was walking over from her apartment, somebody started shooting at people on the basketball courts at Classon and Lafayette. We still don't really know what happened, but it's definitely got me thinking twice about being so cavalier about safety in the neighborhood.

A half hour before the shooting I had been on the phone with her, telling her to come over and meet me at the club. I even told her to walk alongside the police precinct, which is literally right next to the basketball courts. So now I feel pretty shitty, as it would have taken me all of 10 minutes to go and walk her over. Of course, my presence may not have stopped a stray bullet from splitting open anybody's head (thanks to my mother I am blessed with an ability to immediately imagine the Worst Case Scenario, over and over). But the incident does put things in a discomfiting perspective. Added to that was our little run-in at the Alibi with the crazed window-bustin' drug dealer. I'd like to somehow tie in my recent blackout thing, but I am not sure how much that had to do with the reality of the local crime rates.

So thanks to everyone who risked their life to come out to the show! The shooting put a bit of a pall over the show, but things ended up coming off pretty nicely. This is of course ignoring the fact that my new amp caught on fire even before we started. Buzz noted smoke pouring off the top off the amp as it sat warming up before our set. I feared using it, but luckily Mike had brought his amp along, which is not dissimilar from mine. As usual, I then didn't have much time to familiarize myself with the many knobs of the new amp, but we managed to get through our set without breaking anything else significant. We also managed not to charge a cover price; I'm not sure whose fault that was, but if I had known we could get away with it, I would have publicized the event as a free show.

The Physics of Meaning went on after us, that's the band with the Polyphonic Spree guy in it. Though not totally my cuppa tea, they were really really good at what they do, a sort of alt-country in the vein of Magnolia Electric Co. (which I say only because they're one of the few bands like that I've seen live). Also they had a dude playing a sitar! Plus an oboist (when's the last time you saw an oboe?). They got a pretty good sized crowd to come out (actually we had a good turnout too, but nobody was paying at that point).

Bottom Bracket rounded out the night, laying down some heavy-rock improv on the unsuspecting audience. And the people loved it! But then, who couldn't? Afterwards, Daniel from Physics of Meaning mentioned how good they were, and when I told him how most of their set was done totally on the fly, his eyes widened and he said, "Now I'm even more blown away." Is it just me, or are we all wasting away in obscurity?

So the evening ended on an up-note. We got to see some people we haven't seen in a while, we had a couple of drinks (but not enough to knock me out, I assure you, Doc). I momentarily forgot about the windows smashings, and the shootings, and the no-doubt enormous repair bill I will face when I take the Mark III into the shop. Then when I was wedging myself between the bass cabinet and the inner roof of the Band Van for the 3 block ride home, I tore the shell of my big parka on a metal corner, just yanked the fabric all to hell. Alas.

Then I remembered, when I ordered the jacket, the company shipped me two by accident. I have a brand new parka hanging in my closet. Everything's coming up parkas.

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Tuesday, March 28, 2006 at 14:01:33 (EST)

The man who never was

Hey, I've made it a week without collapsing on the street! The further I get from the incident, the more I start to believe it was all a big set-up. Vampire aliens, conspiring with the NSA and the BSA, targeted me for subdermal GPS tagging, thus appropriating the 'seizure' and accompanying hospital stay to cover their nefarious actions. It's the oldest trick in the book.

Now I've just got to find out exactly where the tag is.

Maybe I'll find it tonight at Sputnik. Watch me squirm!

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Friday, March 24, 2006 at 15:30:05 (EST)

He says it's your turn in the barrel

Thanks for the advice and insight, folks. We may never know what happened to yours truly on the cold streets of New York (Zack's latest theory involves alien abduction which makes as much sense as anything). But it's a reminder that our lives are short, confusing, and either involves too many or too few jelly beans. One minute you're on top of the world; the next you're tipping over onto the 3rd rail. So to celebrate my near-resurrection, MOTICO takes the local stage with some guy who played violin in The Polyphonic Spree, plus local fixed-gear cultists BOTTOM BRACKET. This show is at Sputnik, literally 3 blocks from my house, so I'm very excited to perform there finally. It's a nice bar, good crowd, I dunno what the cover price is but I'm gonna ask it to remain nominal. If you're in Clinton Hill this Tuesday, you could do worse than stop by and absorb some culture!

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Thursday, March 23, 2006 at 16:15:32 (EST)

Tied to machines that makes me be

I used to scoff at people who carried health insurance, feeling it wasn't a good deal. Even when you get it through your job, it ends up costing you some money, which you may never use unless you get really sick. And hey, by that time you might have paid into coverage for so long you might as well pay for the treatment outright. This logic still applies to vision coverage for the most part, but for the big stuff I'm a true believer. I don't know what the total bill for my hospital jaunt will be yet, but it touches on some classic big-ticket items: ambulance ride, emergency room visit, 2-night stay in semi-private room, tested via CT Scan, EEG and MRI. Oh, and let's not forget all that fine hospital chow!

I think St. Vincents' is gonna charge me plenty for this, so I pray the good folks at Empire Blue-Cross/Blue-Sheild have me well-covered. I guess I could look it up on the web site and see what is and what is not covered, but I fear it will prematurely depress me. Still, even though this experience has convinced it's always a good idea to carry medical insurance (but only if they pay all my bills), I don't particularly care for the manner in which my treatment was handled.

I awoke in the emergency room to a bunch of doctors running around, asking me if I knew where I was. My head was killing me and I couldn't remember anything before I left work earlier in the day. As I laid there for a while, as much as possible came back to me. I still had no explanation for the loss of consciousness, but I felt only like I had a hangover now. Nothing I haven't dealt with before.

But they wouldn't let me leave. As if to justify their existence, the hospital kept me there in order to run a bunch of tests on me, hoping to find some obvious internal flaw. But surprise, they couldn't find anything. Now if I had no insurance, would they have been so quick to try out everything but the kitchen sink on me? I hope they would have given me the option to bail before they started racking up the major charges. And yes, I know, I know, it's for my own damn good ... better safe than sorry. It's hard to think of that when I was so darned healthy compared to most of the other people in my wing of the hospital. Their steadfast refusal to listen to my "Caffeine & Jelly Beans" theory only further proves that they were not really so much interested in curing me as trying out a lot of fun and scary equipment on me.

Have you people ever had an MRI before? It's scary! But once you get over the notion that you are basically a human torpedo loaded into a beige cannon that makes loud buzzing sounds that, after a while, start to sound like "Tainted Love" over and over again.

Ultimately, the good news is my brain, believe it or not, appears to be free of defect whatsoever. Plus it makes its own gravy!

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Thursday, March 23, 2006 at 11:46:51 (EST)

Mountain of a man is he

The last few days have been among the strangest of my life, yet in retrospect nothing much happened. Monday afternoon I left work to go up to B&H Video to pick up a pair of studio monitor speakers. I recall exiting the subway and getting to the corner of 34th Street and 9th Ave. Then the next thing I remember is coming to on an Emergency Room gurney, my head pounding and a bunch of people trying to get me to answer questions to which I did not know the answer.

I couldn't tell them what day it was, or how I had arrived at the E/R. I knew who I was, and that aside from my aching head, I felt all right. So I didn't panic or anything. But it certainly was a wonder! Thus began my tenure at St. Vincent's Midtown Hospital, where I stayed from Monday afternoon until Wednesday afternoon.It was an experience somewhere between summer camp and a stint in the County Jail.

Sadly, I don't have enough time to go through all the boring details but suffice it to say that they couldn't figure out why I had passed out (some say seized) on the street and did not wake up again for several hours. They kept me prisoner there while they ran various expensive tests on my noggin. All the tests revealed nothing (zing!), which I found both comforting and distressing. If there was no cause for my ailment, how could it be controlled or cured?

Maybe I'm getting epileptic in my old age, or maybe I was touched with a cattle prod, or maybe it was a result of my diet: that day I had only Flavia coffee and Jelly Bellys to eat (I had a lot of both). Rushing for the subway caused my body to freak out and shut itself down involuntarily. At least it had the foresight to knock me out before I was walking the streets with a pair of expensive monitor speakers on my person.

When I'm caught up with my work, I'll share more boring adventures of spending time in one of this country's premier health facilities.

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Monday, March 20, 2006 at 11:45:41 (EST)

First thing you learn is you always gotta wait

Just when I've been feeling that the neighborhood has been getting too gentrified, something happens to remind perhaps things aren't really that sterile after all. We visited the Alibi for the first time in a long while on Saturday. We avoided it on Friday, fearing the drunken crowds of the wannabe-Irish. But Saturday we had been at an oddly abbreviated show at Tommy's Tavern so we stopped over at the Alibi on our way home. Things were going swimmingly, although the place seemed especially well-lit, but maybe that's because we've been hiding out at Sputnik, which may or may not have electric lights at all.

Anyway, there's this thug doofus, apparently named James, who hangs out in front of the bar trying to sell coke. He was banned years ago form actually coming into the bar, but they can't do anything to keep him away from the sidewalk. It seems like he's hanging around trying to sell drugs to the Pratt kids, but Kevin2 pointed out that they're too scared of the guy to buy anything off him. this is probably true, and few of the Alibi regulars seem like the type to cop from a guy like this, who seems as likely to kick you in the face as sell you an eight ball.

So why does he hang around? It's like he's so angered by the fact that he was banned from entering the bar, every time he's nearby, he has to try to enter and make a fuss. One of the last times we were at the Alibi, he showed up and got into it with one of the barbacks. They got him out on the street before much violence ensued, whereupon some drunk college girl tried to give the thug a hug, to which he replied "No hugs! No hugs!" so as to maintain his ferocity in yelling at anyone and everyone about how we'd all better respect him, etc. That night he eventually left without incident.

Saturday, however, was a different story. He showed up outside and after rapping a while to Ralph (who remained unimpressed), tried to give me a spiel about the quality of his merchandise. I wanted to decline, but the guy never stops talking so, I had to just sort of lean away and head back into the bar. Next thing you know, James is inside the bar proper. Now, of course, he can't just try to slip in and head to the back and keep a low profile. He's immediately yelling at the barback guy and making a big show of entering the bar. So of course, they try to get him to leave, and he just goes apeshit. He and the barback (anybody know his name? tall guy with long dreads) start fighting, punches are thrown, bodies are slammed. The beefier bar patrons (not all of whom were male) rush to the scene to try to lend a hand. After a minute or two of wrangling, the barback gets him to the door and outside again. Normally, once he's thrown out again he yells a bit and then leaves. But this time he's angrier than usual, possibly because of his assumed lost face from getting beaten by a bunch of people in the bar. So he's yelling and banging on the door, I have no idea what he's hollering, but he's super pissed. He keeps banging on the (now locked) door, storming off, then coming back to bang on the door and yell some more. Oh, I should point out that a police car rolled by right when the guy was first tossed out on the street, but they apparently didn't notice a crazed man pounding the wall as a group of stunned bar goers stared out at him.The barback guy gets on his cell phone to retrieve the cops, as James continues his tirade. He punches the glass in the door, cracking it (again), but not breaking it. Some whiny drunk starts shouting, "Somebody call the cops!" which really pisses bartender Tommy off, since the cops were obviously already being called. So he's yelling at the drunks, James is pounding and stalking in front of the bar, people are trying to figure out how to sneak out the backyard, and no cops are arriving. James, after walking off for a second, comes back and slams the front window of the bar, which consists of 2 big plexiglass panels. The panels crack and fly out of their frame, debris goes everywhere, neon beer signs fall all askew. Lucky it wasn't regular glass (although those may have been sturdier), as people were still sitting in the window area. They rapidly retreat. James is sticking his head through the hole in the window, shouting something about how he was assaulted and how everybody in the bar was going to jail because we were party to his assault. Hmmm ...

He ran off for the last time. Mind you, from the moment that the cop car had rolled by unawares, it must have been at least 5 minutes, and still no police. People are shaken up, and everybody's trying to decide if it's safe to leave the bar. We decide to stay inside, but others thought it better to leave the scene. This one guy, big and tough on the outside, was clearly spooked and was trying to get his girlfriend to leave. He keeps saying,"Let's GET OUT of here!" still trying to sound tough, but not really convincing anyone. In retrospect, he had a point. We were all lucky James spent his drug money on bling and not guns or the story might not have peaked with the smashing of the window. The people anxious to leave may have rightly felt that he'd be back with firearms, but he didn't turn up again that night.

Cops eventually showed up, long after they could have done any good. I guess they could pick him up at a later time, it's like like he's unknown to local law enforcement. According to Tommy, the guy's already been in and out of jail a few times, and was convicted for rape among his other crimes. So he's not exactly garnering anybody's sympathy. The funny thing is that as a punchline for the evening, this older, really drunk guy started talking to us. He didn't really seem to be aware that a fight had happened (he did say he dove under a table, but I'm not sure why). He was stumbling and falling all over, asking us if we wanted to go back to his place and 'party.' He said he was impressed that I could get myself a 'lover' (as he put it) even though I'm 'bald' (at 48, he was clearly proud of his full head). Sweet talk was not his strong suit. He tried a few more awkward advances before calling it a night, as did we. But we opted out of the party back at his place (which is in the same building where those two women were murdered recently), and went home where it was marginally safer. Bring on the yuppies.

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Friday, March 17, 2006 at 16:28:49 (EST)

So where were the spiders while the fly tried to break our balls

Telenovela StarAnother fun Motico show last night, although I must say, I'm disappointed in you people! Our turnout consisted of maybe 3 people we knew, and one of 'em was pals with the other band so he sort of had to show up. Then again, it's possible that a lot of the people we know personally don't particularly care for our music. I can live with that. In fact, there are times I wonder if anybody but us likes our music at all. But then we play shows like Death Disco and last night's show and the strangers in attendance seem to like what they hear. So the trick is, how to get the folks that like the music to find out about the band and then show up for these gigs.

The BatterieI guess lots of bands have this problem; it doesn't help that the 169 Bar no longer has a web site nor do they do any kind of promotion whatsoever (outside of DJ Mojo's footwork). This town is still a little too big for bands to made any headway in joints like this. Our only savior: the other bands. Last night, folks from the other bands stuck it out through our set, and even got adequately jiggy with it. We met a lot of cool folks from said bands, so it's in no way a total loss.

The whole night was really friendly and fun. Buzz met his doppleganger in the form of Phil from The Batterie. They're both drummer and bear more than passing similarity to each other (plus he's from Youngstown). Of course, Buzz still has yet to meet the guitarist from Big Bear, who looks like he shares a gene or two with him. Maybe all three will get together and form a supergroup of tall swarthy guys. A friend of his band (didn't get the stranger's name) brought his funny dog who enjoys dressing up like David Bowie. Then the guy was suddenly making balloon hats for the kids (Zack). Buzz got to use his new drum set at a live show for the first time; in fact, all the bands used his kit, which gave us an opportunity to hear it 3rd party-style. It kicks ass. And I got to use my new Mesa/Boogie Mark III. That thing is so loud, but what was even louder was the SWR bass rig Zack borrowed from The Batterie. Those things are damn good investments.

All the bands (Telenovela Star, Past Mistress, the aforementioned Batterie) kicked ass, the vibe was all very laid-back: no door-guys bitching at us for not bringing in more people, no soundguys constantly telling us to turn down just because his ears are bleeding, people who were into the music. Odd this is such a rare thing. The only downside was that bottled beer is 6 dollars. at least Stella Artois was. That is no good, and probably explains why more people don't hang out there. The whiskey was also 6 dollars, which sadly, is pretty standard for that area. But suddenly, Jamesons is the best deal in the house. Since I was gonna drink that anyhow, I got a good deal out of it.

Our next gig is at Sputnik, our first show at this newish club in our own neighborhood. The place is like 3 blocks from the house, I can't believe it took us so long to book a show there. And we didn't even book it, a band from out of town asked us to sign on. So if you live in Clinton Hill or have access to a G train, you could do worse than spend your evening with us. What else you go to do on a Tuesday night? Yeah, Tuesday. I know, I know ...

All the big pics are on Flickr.

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Friday, March 17, 2006 at 10:30:21 (EST)

Let's face it pal, you didn't need that eye surgery

You know, I had been thinking of passing a lovely evening at The Alibi, a watering-hole to which I have not been in some time (I know it's not the same, but Sputnik is way closer to my house). Then it dawned on me that today is St. Patrick's Day. Now, there's nothing wrong with this holiday in of itself; I've spent many St Pattys Days in the Alibi, as well as many other bars of course. But for the first time since I've lived here that it falls on a Friday. To the novice reveler that means no consequences. They won't have to get up to go to work tomorrow, so they're gonna go hog wild tonight. It'll be Amateur Hour all over the city, as the same annoying crowd that descends on otherwise tolerable neighborhoods will be out in force. But they'll also be puking green beer on the sidewalks, screaming at each other, and (if we're lucky) beating the shit out of each other (and not me).

But of course, I can't stay in either, right? I was thinking of going to Cake Shop to see Archaeopteryx and some band with the amusing name Hand-Fed Babies (that's an exotic bird reference right?), but I just saw Archaeopteryx on Tuesday and I've maybe had enough for a while. So perhaps Sputnik will be safe tonight, if any place is safe tonight. I'd love to visit the Alibi, but even though it's not technically an Irish Pub, its staff is nearly all Irish or Irish-American, so people are bound to flock there and Get Their Irritating On.

Saturday will be another story altogether. Whereas tonight, there seems to be a dearth of good shows, tomorrow there's like 3 shows I wanna see. USAUSAMONSTER is playing Tommy's, and I'd love to see them even though I just saw them last week. Their new music is amazing, but the crowd at the last show sucked big balls. It was really only 3 or 4 MegaDoofuses who were 'moshing' (or more precisely, flailing around and falling on people left and right). Ever since slam dancing was invented, people have been getting worse and worse at it. Maybe these guys thought they were rousing the crowd, but what they were really doing was trying to make themselves the Show. Let's face it pal, you can't really mosh to USAISAMONSTER, the music is too start/stop to do it right. And then they kept picking each other up and trying to crowd-surf, which was totally not happening. So innocent bystanders kept getting feet jammed into their faces. Eventually one of the doofuses was dropped on his face (people said they heard his nose crack). He tried to keep dancing around, holding his nose gingerly. Then he left for a while (his friends seemed oddly unconcerned at his injury). Then he was back with a plastic bag full of ice on his face. I couldn't believe that breaking his nose wasn't enough to put him out of commission. He went right back to being a total dick; he poked a hole in the bag and swung it around, spraying ice cubes all over the floor. I gotta hand it to him, he was a Dedicated Dick.

So to make a long story short, I think I'd like to check out the band again without that element (actually that's the same element I want to avoid tonight as well). Meanwhile, Stay Fucked is playing over the Glasshouse Gallery. I really want to see these guys while they're still sort of under people's radar (it's only a matter of time). But Orthrelm and Growing are playing at Tonic as well. I've never seen these bands but Orthrelm is putting out a record with Behold ... the Arctopus and everybody keeps saying Growing is a good band. So I dunno. I have 24 hours to decide.

UPDATE: Orthrelm had to cancel the rest of their tour due to RSI injury! Wow. Folks, remember to stretch before rocking out! Well, that winnows things down a bit.

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Tuesday, March 14, 2006 at 16:38:08 (EST)

I got soul and I'm Superbad

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Tuesday, March 14, 2006 at 14:57:40 (EST)

Manhattan keep on makin it, Brooklyn keep on takin it

Ah, I've just received my name plate for my cubicle. Sadly, they neglected to order a thing to actually hold the name plate in place so it's sitting on my desk now, which is of limited use to those who do not know my name. I keep thinking I should dress up my cubicle somehow, but what would I put up? Photos of my cats? A ficus? A mug with a humorous slogan like "Is it Friday yet?" I kinda thought it would just sort of happen after a while, I would accumulate some kind of homey design in here. But in my first office incarnation at 7 WTC, in over a year of working there, I never put in any personal touches. And then the building got knocked down (or was it controlled demolition?). So now I'm glad I didn't have any objects of potential sentimental value there. But what are the odds that my current building will be destroyed? I can surely take the chance, no?

So this weekend my friends through me a surprise "Going Back into the Office" party. I guess. I was rather mystified by both the occasion and the execution of said party, but a good time was had by all. I guess things hit a snag when Jeannie and I got back from seeing Block Party (sweet!) too early, where we found Buzz, Zack and Janice sitting around wearing businesswear while trying to deflect my attention from the table full of food. I must say, their powers of improv perhaps leave something to be desired, but eventually they let me in on the secret. What a bunch of goofballs! Super props go to the Abbster for once again slaving away on a whole mess of chow (which I'm pretty sure she also did for Kevin's party the night before). I'm telling ya, could a professional catering business be that much more work? Hmmm, is the storefront on Myrtle still available? You know, the one that used to be Sprinkles? As has been the case of late, I totally forgot to take any pictures, but perhaps this old photo of an artist's rendition of zack in a cornflower blue shirt will suffice.

It had already been a busy day for yours truly. I got up 'early' and oiled up the folding bike to run up to the bank, where I withdrew the maximum amount. Then I waited for approximately 50 hours at Bergen Bagels in a line so long that it doubled over itself and still spilled out the door onto the street. Am I the only person who buys bagels by the dozen? Everybody else was just getting complicated single bagel orders, which didn't seem worth the wait. Then I had to go to a bodega ATM to withdraw even more money.

Why was I taking cash out all over town? Cuz I was about to blow a wad on yet another device that would speed me into total deafness: a new amp. some guy on Craigslist was selling his Mesa/Boogie Mark III, a device I had long been wanted to acquire. He was selling it more cheaply than nearly any other listing I had found, and since it's tax refund season I figured why not. This thing is super heavy, I think it's heavier than my old amp, even though it seems to be like half the size. I'm having to spend a lot of time figuring it out since it has a million knobs on it, but I think I have it down enough to use it live.

If you'd like to see the amp in action, Motico is playing this Thursday at the 169 Bar. Most of you missed the last 169 Bar show due to the transit strike (and thanks to the folks that did make it), so now's your chance to see us at what is perhaps the most subway-friendly bar we might ever play at. The East Broadway F train station is like right outside the door of this bar, it's so easy to get to this place, it's almost criminal.

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Tuesday, March 07, 2006 at 16:01:50 (EST)

Whatever people say I am, that's what I'm not

My home away from home

I'm almost positive I've mentioned this before, but now that I'm going into an office every day, these mundane things ring with all the irritation of nails on a blackboard.

  1. Why is it that no matter what time I leave for work, I get here at the exact time? I have varied my commute by as much as 25 minutes, yet somehow I have been getting here at nearly the same minute every day. Is there then any point in EVER trying to go in early to work?

  2. I hope to christ they implement that PayPass metrocard system, because after all these years, a majority of subway riders are still mystified by the card format. People, you don't have to wait for the guy in front of you to get all the way through the turnstile and his merry way BEFORE you ever-so-gingerly swipe your own metrocard. I guess people think if they swipe too soon or something their fare will get tacked onto the person in front of them, getting lost forever. Ugh, even typing that is making me lose IQ points.

  3. I have to take this rudimentary overpass to cross West Street to get to my building. there is an escalator at each end. I despise the people who 'ride' the escalators (I know, I've totally bitched about this before). And I know, I'm sure the day the escalator was invented people immediately started riding it instead of using it to enhance walking up the stairs. But because I am invariably running a little late (see #1) I just want to get my ass into the office in the mornings. On my way out, I just want to get the hell away from this place. therefore, I practically sprint up the escalators. The 'standees' represent everything that is evil in this world. Their only saving grace is most of them know how to stand on the right side of the steps, so people can walk on the left.

Yeah, this stuff isn't exactly groundbreaking in the world of office observation, but I still have to get this out of my system. Eventually, my spirit will be totally crushed and you'll see me glumly riding the escalator and fearfully pausing at the subway turnstile. I'm gonna be just like you!

Posted By Jimmy Legs | Non-PermaLink
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Thursday, March 02, 2006 at 13:42:46 (EST)

well, this sucks
i'm now taking suggestions of methods to circumvent my company's firewall so i can edit my site directly to avoid problems like the one below. should i setup Remote Desktop or is there something more nefarious I can work up?

Posted By Jimmy Legs | Non-PermaLink
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Thursday, March 02, 2006 at 13:15:11 (EST)

Stuck in the middle with Dü
Should we call our album "Erdnussbutterschlampe?" I'm not even sure how to pronounce it. I just made it up from a couple of German words in a comic from the new issue of NY Press (don't forget to vote JoshB Most Loathsome New Yorker!)

The German language apparently encourages its speakers to create compound words at will, so there will probably never be a definitive "Longest Word in German," but the front contender is:


(81 characters, though spelling varies) which means "the club for subordinate officials of the head office management of the Danube steamboat electrical services (name of a pre-war club in Vienna)." What I didn't know was that other languages also have extremely long compounds, such as Sweden's


(130 characters) meaning "preparatory work on the contribution to the discussion on the maintaining system of support of the material of the aviation survey simulator device within the north-east part of the coast artillery of the Baltic." So specific!

But I think my favorite long word is this Finnish term:


It's only 43 characters, but it means "even with its quality of not being possible to be made irrational," which as far as I'm concerned pretty much sums up our album's content.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. Does anybody like Erdnussbutterschlampe? It means "Peanut Butter Slut."

Posted By Jimmy Legs | Non-PermaLink

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Wednesday, March 01, 2006 at 16:20:31 (EST)

I got your number, don't wait by the phone

Until I can come up with some highly illegal method of circumventing my companies annoying web proxies, I cannot update my band's web site, not can I do much in the way of management of this site. Not that it matters, but now that I can't do it ... I want to do it, really bad. Ah, that predictable human condition. See how universal the blogworld experience is? And not just because 95% of you are sitting in similarly beige cubicles, getting fidgety from too much free coffee and too little intellectual stimulation.

Web limitations notwithstanding, I am slowly adapting to this Boring New World. It's probably my vestigial fight-or-flight response, but I haven't had any trouble getting up hours earlier than I have in years. However, going to sleep is still problematic, as my thoughts are wont to drift to obsessive thoughts about what shoe will drop tomorrow at the office, what fresh horror awaits me. And what's worse, I can't get the cat hair off any of my clothes. I look like an extra in that Nepalese bar scene in Raiders.

Anyway, I did have time to throw together this half-assed flyer for our FREE show next Wednesday. Yes, Motico is back and returning to the very stage that was the site of my spiritual de-pantsing way back in September. Will I make a fool of myself again? Only one way to find out!

Posted By Jimmy Legs | Non-PermaLink
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