no shirt

Posted in Call it what you like! on December 21st, 2002 by admin

Ok, on to the shirtless wonders.

After work on Wednesday, Holger and I jumped into his vintage VW Westfalia camper van (complete with fridge and fold-out couch) and drove, ‘My Fair Lady’ blasting out of the stereo, to meet Marg, our neighbors, and some gaming pals at the cinema. We went to TTT with a group of nine, and it became apparent as we walked in that we wouldn’t be sitting together. Every showing for the evening was sold out by mid-afternoon, and while we had tickets in advance we had the poor grace to only arrive half an hour early. What gall we had, haha!

So, Marg and I ended up in the middle of the back row, next to a crop of what at first we thought were Young Men but soon revealed themselves (literally) to be Adolescent Boys. It was clear from the beginning of the previews that there was something wrong with these dudes. They were talking amongst themselves in normal (i.e., not quiet) conversational tones, giggling at inappropriate moments, and in general being distracting. It was all I could do to not accidentally spill my drink laterally across the whole row.

Midway through the film, not so much because I had to go but because I needed a break from them, I went out to the lobby for a minute. When I returned, Marg had swapped seats with me. This was a wise and kind move on her part, as she is not as easily distracted by bozos talking in the theater as I am. This helped the situation at first, and with ordinary bozos would have saved Marg from having to listen to me bitch about these morons nonstop for hours after the film. These, however, were no ordinary bozos. These were ‘Need-that-boot-to-the-head-stat’ first-rate weenies. Finally, the boys were too obnoxious even for my cheerful bride. She turned to glare at them ominously, then resumed watching the film.

Now we must switch to MID (Marg Internal Dialogue) mode, as what we have next is secondhand as it was related to me by her:

There I was, watching the movie. The little twits next to me were quiet for a few minutes, but of course they started up again. Dorks. As I got more and more annoyed, I thought to myself “geez, I wish those losers would cut it out. And why the hell aren’t they wearing any shirts?”

That’s the point at which my brain realized what my eyes had seen twenty minutes ago: these jerks, who were no doubt high or drunk or had been dropped on their heads or something, apparently decided it would be fun to go to a crowded movie and watch it with their shirts off. Huh? Maybe they thought they were orcs.



Posted in Call it what you like! on December 19th, 2002 by admin

Today we saw the Two Towers. We sat next to some adolescent boys whom I will, for lack of a more accurate yet still printable term, henceforth call The Shirtless Wonders.

More on this tomorrow.


Posted in Call it what you like! on December 17th, 2002 by admin

All right, I’m re-testing the ‘email to yer blog’ function. It used to work, but it was broken for a while. But it’s been a while, so maybe it works now. Thus re-testing. If you don’t see this it’s not my fault. Well, really, it is, but since it won’t appear on the page I’ll have deniability.

So it’s mid-December and I’m discovering why people like living in the South. It’s 59 degrees in Nashville. It rained this morning, but right now we’ve got the sort of crisp-and-breezy fluffy cloud blue sky that one associates with rare perfect autumn days in Buffalo. Except in Nashtown that’s like half of the week every week all winter, apparently. Yow.

Of course, you still can’t get a decent fish fry here. Bah.


Posted in Call it what you like! on December 16th, 2002 by admin

Tra-la, actually got a tune up before midnight for a change.

We saw the restored version of Fritz Lang’s Metropolis on Friday at our favorite little arts cinema. It was mighty cool. The plot even (*gasp*) made sense! Apparently they’ve put back in a bunch of missing film and filled in the remaining gaps with new intertitles. Some of the imagery is incredible.

We saw it with a strange, one-time-only live performance of a ‘new soundtrack’ by a group called Spacecraft. It was interesting; they managed to make their score synch up pretty well. Not quite Dark Side of the Moon/Oz-level synch, mind you, but then what is? I wonder what the orchestral score for this release is like.


Posted in Call it what you like! on December 13th, 2002 by admin

Oooooooooo! The library at the Medical Center is all wireless. I walk in with my Powerbook and am connected.

My inner geek is pleased.


Posted in Call it what you like! on December 12th, 2002 by admin

I find it interesting how much time, effort, and expense can go into arguing about what are essentially semantic issues. One of the music BBSes (er., I guess they’re called forums now…showing my age) I frequent was recently home to an extended flamewar about whether or not ‘DJs’ are musicians. This thread, believe it or not, stretched into hundreds of pages of diatribe, counter-diatribe, attempt at definition, diatribe-against-definition…you get the idea.

My take on the issue after reading about 10 posts: who cares? Both turntablists (as some of the DJs insisted they be called) and persons who play more traditional musical instruments (heh heh, like sample-based synthesizers…anybody remember those debates?) can do creative work. Both groups contain some undeniably talented individuals, and both contain performers whose work can charitably be described as crappy. Does who is called what matter, really? Of course not.

Why am I telling you this? Because I have occasionally, like a deer in the CRT glare, found myself reading these arguments with great concentration. Wasted time, I tell you. No more. I hereby vow to blow off one of my major fruitless addictions: Web forum browsing.

While I’m at it, I implore you all: every time you plop onto a website looking for useful information, but instead find yourself reading an extended rantwar between parties who really have nothing to fight about, shut down yer dang browser and use the time you would have spent reading it to do something else. Take a photo, read a book, write a story, or pet your dog.

BTW, I’m not advocating giving up the net, just the stupid parts of it. Webcomics, for example, are still aok by me…


Posted in Call it what you like! on December 12th, 2002 by admin

Wow. Say what you like, but that Johnny Cash is one rockin’ dude. If you haven’t heard it, check out his sweet cover of Depeche Mode’s Personal Jesus.


Posted in Call it what you like! on December 8th, 2002 by admin

Song of the week, 8 December 2002:

get the mp3
(Music and Words M. Frey (c) 2002)

Sometimes you just don’t question inspiration. Especially when the answers might be a little too weird. A large chunk of this tune appeared spontaneously over Thanksgiving in Buffalo. Maybe excess tryptophan is to blame. Or maybe not.

(c) 2002 Mark Frey

The sun, the moon, the stars and the planets
all hang around in the sky
if you stare at a solar eclipse without protection
you’ll probably burn out your eye

but that’s not the reason I’m singing this tune
no it isn’t connected at all
I just stuck it in as an opening verse
to keep the whole thing from being too small

this song is in fact about Aardvarks
yes of Aardvarks today I will sing
but Aardvarks are curious creatures
about which I know almost nothing

Aardvarks are hairy burrowing mammals
with a blunt-ended snout
they dig little holes all over Africa
and have no political clout

now I’m reaching the ends of my knowledge
and don’t really know where to go
I finally see why they always tell you
to write about things that you know

this song is in fact about Aardvarks
yes of Aardvarks today I will sing
but Aardvarks are curious creatures
about which I know almost nothing

for the last verse I looked some Aardvark facts up
isn’t the internet great?
now I know Aardvarks are basically loners
only getting together to mate


Your average Aardvark lives about 10 years
and can’t run very fast
they have strong claws to help in digging for termites
which I’m told are their favorite repast

They’ve got tubular teeth and come out at night
their tongues are quite sticky and long
their name means “earth-pig” but if you should think
they’re related to porkers then you would be wrong

this song is in fact about Aardvarks
yes of Aardvarks today I will sing
but Aardvarks are curious creatures
about which I know almost nothing

piano power

Posted in Call it what you like! on December 4th, 2002 by admin

Blocked out next week’s tune last night, with words and everything. Going to be piano-based this week for a change.

Tennessee has that whole freezing rain thing going on today. I hope our power lines don’t go down tonight; I’d like to get some work done.

Sorry sir

Posted in Call it what you like! on December 3rd, 2002 by admin

So. This charming gentlebeast found his way to my inbox this morning. Eek! So sorry, Mr. Deth Badger sir, won’t ‘appen ag’in.

Yeah, I know…I had to cheat this week. I actually wrote (well, half-wrote) a tune in Buffalo, but had no way to record it. Then I was going to attempt relative newness with one of the Halloween tapes, but since they were taken right off the board and I had mixed things to sound good in the room, the recordings are mostly vocals with practically no instruments – a little hard to listen to. So I hauled out a ‘classic.’ Hopefully enough people haven’t heard this version before, or needed a new copy, to stave off the creepyclawedcreatures for a few more days.