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Monthly Archives: November 2012

Finish Line.

Close-In Southeast Portland.

Glenn’s chicken coops were big.  No one was going to argue with that.  Glenn had had to special order them from the Urban Farm Store and knock out a wall in his backyard shed just to fit them in there.  He’d filled them with 9 gorgeous Andalusian hens, and they were smart, inquisitive, and majestic: the exact words Skyler at the Urban Farm Store had used to describe them.

And Skyler was a twenty-something with perfect hair who said he’d occupied Portland for a solid two months in the Spring while he and Glenn were chatting, so clearly he was the person to be consulting with on significant chicken coop purchases.  Skyler smelled like just the right combination of B.O. and homemade soap, and he looked you right in the eye when he explained his well-reasoned position on the organic vs. local vs. free-range debate.  Skyler was the kind of guy Glenn wished he’d been at that age.

But chicken coops were only part of the equation.  At a certain point, you had to recognize the necessity of goats.

Glenn knew this all too well, deep down, but every time he closed his eyes all he could see was that new model of the Trek Madone bike. Skyler at the Urban Farm Store would sure think of him differently if he saw Glenn zipping around town on that thing.

But he had to put his family first.  What kind of jackass could really enjoy riding his Trek Madone around town knowing that his neglected children were sitting at home eating fresh, hormone-free eggs without fresh, hormone-free goat’s milk to go with them?

No, the Madone would just have to wait a few years.  Hopefully the kids wouldn’t need braces when they got to middle school.

Coming out of his reverie, Glenn suddenly began to doubt his decision not to buy a rooster or two.  He knew Kimberly didn’t want to be woken up at 5 in the morning, but wouldn’t it be worth it for the increased authenticity?

He needed the confident, authoritative guidance that only Skyler could provide.  Did he work on Sundays?  God, Glenn hoped so.

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Day 29.

Unincorporated North Fulton County.

Glenn’s TV was big.  No one was going to argue with that.  Glenn had had to special order it from Best Buy and knock out a wall in his basement just to fit it in there.  He’d watched Avatar on there just after it came out, and Transformers II a few weeks later, and the picture quality had been crisp, vibrant, and intense: all of the words Skyler at Best Buy had used to describe it.

And Skyler was a high-school senior with perfect hair who said he’d been accepted to Georgia Tech while he and Glenn were chatting, so clearly he was the person to be consulting with on significant TV purchases.  Skyler smelled like just the right combination of deodorant and masculine cologne, and looked you right in the eye when he explained his well-reasoned position on the LCD vs Plasma debate.  Skyler was the kind of guy Glenn wished he’d been at that age.

But a big TV was only part of the equation.  At a certain point, you had to recognize the necessity of surround sound, a Blu-Ray disc player, a Playstation, and a Wii.

Glenn knew this all too well, deep down, but every time he closed his eyes all he could see was that new model of the Honda CBR Sportsbike.  Skyler at Best Buy would sure think of him differently if he saw Glenn roaring around town on that thing.

But he had to put his family first.  What kind of jackass could really enjoy riding his Honda Sportsbike around town knowing that his neglected children were sitting at home watching DVDs of their favorite Disney movies without a Blu-Ray quality picture or stadium sound?

No, the Sportsbike would just have to wait a few years.  Hopefully the kids wouldn’t need braces when they got to middle school.

Coming out of his reverie, Glenn suddenly began to doubt his decision to go with digital cable instead of satellite.  He knew Kimberly didn’t want that ugly dish sticking out the side of the house, but wouldn’t it be worth it for STARZ HD?

He needed the confident, authoritative guidance that only Skyler could provide.  Did he work on Sundays?  God, Glenn hoped so.

Day 28.

The song doesn’t actually start until 3:30.  While the spoken word stuff here is less annoying than it is on a lot of videos, it’s still spoken word stuff, and therefore pretty annoying.

Really, the only person who can get away with doing spoken words in a video is Lady Gaga.  Not because it’s any less annoying, but because with her it’s more like she’s portraying an artist who does spoken word stuff in the giant performance-art piece that is her pop-music career.  So it’s less about the actual words that are spoken, and more about their mere presence and what that signifies.  Or something like that.

Anyway, if you’re not Lady Gaga, cut it out with the spoken words in your music videos.  If you can’t get the song’s message across without resorting to a tedious preamble, then you need to go back to songwriter school.

But so I really dig this song.  She sings low and detached in the slow, serious verses, and then she builds to a high, breezy vocal through the bridge to the ecstatic chorus.  And this contrast really makes you feel the enormous distance between her unhappy life before the road and the euphoria of just riding.  At least that’s how I feel when I’m listening to it.  And then I start thinking about California and reach for my car keys.

I also love that she’s sleeping with all of these grizzled old biker dudes in the video (even that really creepy shot where she’s in the dude’s lap and he’s brushing her hair).  I mean, who else does that?

And that jacket/jean shorts combo when she’s outside the gas station smoking is phenomenally cool.  God, I want to be that fucked-up person.

Day 27.

I’m not quite sure what she’s singing about, nor about what’s going on in the video.   But I’ve been watching it on repeat for almost an hour now, and I don’t ever want to stop.  So…basically an ordinary Kate Bush video.

Day 26.

I just got to swim for the first time in 3 years!  I’m at a hotel in Redmond for work, and I’m pretty much the only person staying here tonight, so for once the indoor pool wasn’t completely overrun with kids.  

I don’t want a very fancy house.  I don’t want a 2-story living room, or a “media room,” with a movie projector, or an office with oak floors and a library, but I have decided that, if I ever have money to burn, I definitely want an indoor swimming pool.  With royal blue tiles, surrounded by tropical plants, and in a room with a giant skylight and panel windows.  

Also: I wanna be hot so I look awesome swimming in it in the morning after breakfast.

Day 25.

The Weekend.

Sopes from world-famous Luis’s Taqueria in Woodburn.

And the cats, of course.

Day 24.

So now that I’m done with the CPA, I need book and TV recommendations.

Nonfiction books need not apply.

Has anyone read War and Peace?  Is it worth it?

Bonus points for TV shows that are on Netflix Instant.