Saturday, June 30, 2007

TGWOOfY Top Songs of '07: Half Way.

Yesterday I posted my 25 favorite records of the year so far. In January of '08 I'll pick my 25 favorite records of the whole year, in addition to my 100 favorite songs of the year. Rather than pick 100 at the half way point, I'm just going to hit you with 50, and tell you what I think of some of them.

(Clockwise from upper left: The Fratellis, Missy Higgins, Son Volt, Colbie Caillat, Augie March, Kaiser Chiefs, Amy Winehouse and in the Middle: Feist.)

#50) The WAiFS - From Little Things Big Things Grow #49) Liam Finn - Wiseman #48) Something For Kate - The Futurist #47) Feist - 1234 #46) Son Volt - Methamphetamine #45) WILCO - What Light #44) The Shins - Phantom Limb #43) Amy Winehouse - Rehab #42 Cathy Petocz - Sylvia #41) Kaiser Chiefs - Angry Mob

#40) Low Stars - Calling All Friends #39) A Fine Frenzy - Y0u Picked Me #38) The Herd - Comrade Jesus Christ #37) The Howling Bells - Low Happening #36) Missy Higgins - Dusty Road #35) Fountains of Wayne - Someone To Love #34) The Noisettes - Bridge to Canada #33) Ryan Adams (w/Sheryl Crow) - Two #32) Girl in a Coma - Say #31) Interpol - The Heimlich Maneuver

#30) The Nightwatchman - The Road I Must Travel #29) Sick Puppies - All the Same #28) Crowded House - Don't Stop Now #27) Jill Cunniff - Love is a Luxury #26) The Pierces - Lights On #25) The Good The Bad and The Queen - Northern Whale #24) Girl in a Coma - Road to Home #23) Green Day - Working Class Hero #22) Ted Leo & The Pharmacists - Sons of Cain #21) The Fratellis - Chelsea Dagger

#20) Sarah Shannon - Near & Far #19) Sara Bareilles - Love Song #18) Paul Kelly - The Ballad of Queenie and Rover #17) Art Brut - Direct Hit #16) Modest Mouse - Missed the Boat #15) Tori Amos - Big Wheel #14) Kate Miller-Heidke - Words #13) The Blow - Hey Boy #12) Arctic Monkeys - Fluorescent Adolescence #11) What Made Milwaukee Famous - Idecide

#10) Colbie Caillat - Feelings Show. A few years back MySpace brought me Tristan Prettyman. Caillat is the '07 version. She's a Cali surfer girl type, with a sweet sounding voice.

#9) Augie March - One Crowded Hour. This is an amazing song from a great Aussie rock group. In addition to great words and music, Augie March bring a unique and enjoyable sound.

#8) The Shins - Australia. I picked this record up for "Phantom Limb" which is a great song (#44 on my list.) And sure I'll admit I first payed attention to this track due to it's name, but the song holds it's own, even if it wasn't named after my favorite nation after the USA.

#7) Son Volt - The Picture. We all have bands we love, and we all have years out of those band's careers the we cherish. When it comes to Son Volt, I loved their mid 90's sound the best, and The Picture is a flashback to that sound.

#6) Kaiser Chiefs - Ruby. Dicky Wilson sounds an awful lot like Morrssiey on this track, and that's a good thing in my mind. He even seems to be writing like Moz with a like like this: "Due to lake of interest, tomorrow has been canceled."

#5) Amy Winehouse - You Know I'm No Good. She is just one of a kind. Her soul filled voice would have been just as at home in New Orleans in 1925, but she's a kick as JEP. Jewish English Princess.

#4) Paul Kelly, Missy Higgins and Augie March - Droving Woman. Two of my all time favorite Aussie artists team up with one of my new favorite bands from down under to perform a cover of Kev Carmody's beautiful, sweeping epic about the loss of a life.

#3) Missy Higgins - Going North. Missy's new record is so full of transcendent songs, it's hard to pick which one I like the best. Going North is a tale of striking out on your own and just being you, which really resonated with me. The first track off the record "Steer" has the same ethos but I liked the pace, tone and feel of GN better.

#2) The Fratellis - Everybody Knows You Cried Last Night. By far the best song on an amazing record. These guys take all the best elements of just about every UK rock group from the Beatles to Oasis and put out a record that sounds like a party on a disc.

#1) Feist - I Feel It All. The very first time I listened to this song, it reached out of my speakers and grabbed me. Feist has such a wonder full voice, and is a master at writing a great pop song. I would say that I'm infatuated with this song as of now, and after only having the record for a few months, that may wear off. But, it will sure be a favorite for along time, if not #1 at the end of the year.


Friday, June 29, 2007

TGWOOfY 25 Records of '07: Half Way Home

I like making lists. That, if anything, should be apparent to anyone who has ever looked at my blog. And Since 2007 is now half over, I thought I'd drop a few music lists on you good folks. Today, I'm going to count down the top 25 records of the year so far, which is based solely on the 39 I have seen fit to buy. Tomorrow I'll hit the top 50 songs of the year to this point, which include singles I've heard on the radio, the net and MySpace. After that, Inky and I will be out of town hiking and B&Bing it for a few days... so you'd better enjoy this dose of Greazy while you can.

#25 Misty O'Dell - The Couch sessions
#24 My Latest Novel - Wolves
#23 The Noisettes - What's the Time Mr. Wolf
#22 Fountains of Wayne - Traffic and Weather
#21 Sarah Shannon - City Morning Song

#20 The Pierces - Thirteen Tales of Love and Revenge
#19 Lily Allen - Alright, Still
#18 Ted Leo & The Pharmacists - Living with the Living
#17 The Blow - Poor Aim: Love Songs
#16 John Butler Trio - Grand National

#15 The Good, The Bad & The Queen - Self Titled
#14 What Made Milwaukee Famous - Trying to Never Catch Up
#13 Jull Cunniff - City Beach
#12 Kaiser Chiefs - Yours Truly, Angry Mob
#11 WILCO - Sky Blue Sky

#10 Girl in a Coma - Both Before I'm Gone
#9 The Shins - Wincing the Night Away
#8 Arctic Monkeys - Favourite Worst Nightmare
#7 Amy Winehouse - Back to Black
#6 The Long Blondes - Someone to Drive You Home

#5 Various Artists - Cannot Buy My Soul - This compilation of Aussie artists performing the best work of Aboriginal singer/songwriter Kev Carmody is music at it's best. Great performances and amazingly poignant writing.

#4 Son Volt - The Search - Maybe it's Jay Farrar's unique vocals, or maybe it's his writing and arranging. Whatever it is, I've loved these guys for 12 years and this record is every bit as good as 1995's Trace.

#3 Feist - The Reminder - When it's all said and done this may end up either shooting to #1 or slipping lower. For the last two months I've been playing the hell out of this record with no sign of becoming disinterested. It's quite simply an amazing compilation of a wide array of emotions.
#2 Missy Higgins - On a Clear Night - Missy topped my '05 music list with The Sound of White, and her sophomore effort is all around better than that record. She is an amazing writer and singer and the growth of both of those skills is evident on this record.

#1 The Fratellis - Costello Music - For those of you who only know these Scots by there song "Flathead" which was in the iPod commercials: You're missing out. This record is so easy to listen to, and chock full o' hits. All 13 Tracks are excellent and a hand full of them are all-time great material. In addition to "Flathead" check out "Henrietta" "Chelsea Dagger" Everybody knows You Cried Last Night" and "Whistle For the Choir."

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Cookie Review: Tim Tams

Somehow, when Inky and I were in Oz we missed out on Tim Tams. They are the most popular biscuit in Australia, and I know we saw them down there, but we just didn't eat them. So now that we've been back for 2 years I'm finally getting my shot. I found a website called Everything Australian that is run out of North Little Rock of all places, where I was able to pick up a pack. They arrived yesterday, and Inky and I each sampled a couple.

They are indeed an exquisite cookie. Think of a rectangular Oreo, with chocolate cream filling that is coated in chocolate. Mhhhh! The combination of the chocolate cookie, the cream and the outer shell is fantastic. I've had a chocolate covered Oreo and the Tim Tam win hands down. Plus there is a benefit to not only the coating but also the shape.

The rectangular shape allows you to do a "Tim Tam Slam." This is accomplished by biting off opposite corners of the Tim Tam and then using it as a makeshift straw for sucking coffee or tea. As you dip one corner into the hot beverage you suck on the other corner until the liquid begins to dribble into your mouth. After a few sips the structural integrity of the cookie will begin to become compromised, this is your cue to shove the whole cookie in your mouth.

You've gotta love the Aussies!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Take a Hike

Inky and I decided that it was just about time we get out and experience some of natures splendor. So we laid in supplies and last Sunday we hit the trail. We went for a hike at Kelly's Run, in the Holtwood Recreational area in Lancaster County.

The trail winds through deep woods, fords streams both small and large and eventually winds up to a pinnacle with beautiful views of the mighty Susquehanna river. Inky is in better shape than I am, so she did a lot less panting on our way up, but we both made it. It was a fantastic feeling to be out in nature, and also to get a natural workout. There's something so nice about calories burned while having fun vs sitting on an exercise bike.

Along the way, we saw butterflies, crossed an old rusted out bridge, and kicked about in a few streams. I also cut down a little sapling (shh!) with my giant knife and made inky a walking stick.

Now that we've found a trail within 25 miles of our home, we're going to strike out on some other hikes in Eastern PA over the coming days. It's a big week for Inky and I, as we will be going to see Morrissey on Friday night in Philly, and then hiking for a few days from Sunday through Tuesday.


Monday, June 25, 2007

Who Has That Kind of Time?

There have been a few reports that Christina Aguilera is thinking about making the jump to the silver screen. I say good for her, since I think she is a great singer, and has above average looks. That's about all you need to be in movies these days anyway, fame and hotness. And Christina has both... and you know it. Frankly, she could really clean up in the right kind of movie. Once she gets a tiny turn under her belt (oh wait, that's a skirt) she'll be ready for a bigger role. And once she's done a movie or two, she'll be able to cash in by nuding up, if the script calls for it of course. And do you know why she will be able to make dough by taking her clothes off in a movie? Because as much as people tried to make her out as the big slut, to Britney's good wholesome girl, she's kept herself covered in the three places that matter.

No splayed vag while getting out of a car. No nip-slip. Sure she's done plenty of shots of her in tiny panties with her nipples covered only by her hair or a well placed hand, but that's just been an appetizer.

Someone once said that power it being able to control the release of information so it benefits you. Well in Hollywood power is making sure that if someone sees your nipples or cooter then you are paid well for it. People are so interested in seeing famous people in the buff that there are really talented computer geeks out there who spend time altering photos to make it look like that star that your love (or hate) got caught in a compromising situation. Take a look at the photo to the left of Donald Duck exposing Christina's right boob. It looks pretty real, doesn't it? (Click on the photo to get a larger image, perv!)

But once you see this photo (below) you realize that someone just took a lot of time to fool you. They even found a similarly sized tit that was pierced to boot! And people wonder why the Japanese are passing us! They don't waist their time on this kind of shit. They just go to the break room, buy a coffee from one vending machine and a pair of soiled panties from the other and get back to work.

That's what we're missing in America! We need to be more up front about our perversions. Then maybe we'd be a little less obsessed. If people just started to demand that their significant other get them off, maybe they would stop turning to famous people to do it. If you want to spy on your wife while she's in the shower, so be it, then maybe you'd stop pouring over the web looking for photos of famous vag. And that would put our best and brightest back to work on real issues, rather than doctoring photos of famous people. Namely: falsifying a reason to invade Iran.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Let's Make a Deal

I went to yet another Minor League baseball game last night. In addition to a beautiful night and a great game (more on that later) I saw a sight only to be found in York. Just outside the men's bathroom along the third base line sat the little scooter you see above. It was sporting the "For sale by owner sign" but the owner didn't seam to be around. York is a strange town, filled with strange people to say the least. I haven't called the number to see how much he or she (you would guess he because it was outside of the men's room) wants for the scooter. If any of my readers are interested, give a call... tell 'em Greazy sent ya!
As for the game, it was an example of everything I love about baseball. You can watch the game everyday for your whole life and still see something you never saw before. In this game, the Rev's and the visiting Somerset Patriots were scoreless into the 13th inning. York's two best players were unavailable at this time as Matt Dryer was at his brother's wedding and Nate Espy had already pinch hit and was pulled from the game with a bad hamstring.
So with no other position players left (one having been kicked out along with Manager Chris Hoiles) Ryan Minor inserted pitcher Charlie Hesseltine in the game as the DH. He struck out in his first at bat, with the winning run at third. But, in the 13th he drew a walk and was sacrificed to second. The next batter was intentionally walked to set up a double play. Ramon Nivar hit a shot to 3B Jeff Nettles who threw to second for the second out. 2B Danny Garcia's relay throw to first was high, allowing Hesseltine to score the winning, and only run.

I love this game.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Less Than Meets The Eye

"Why does Michael Bay get to keep on making movies?" That is a line from the song The End of an Act which was featured in the movie Team America: World Police, and it's a great question. Other than 2005's The Island, which was saved by Ewan McGregor's acting and Scarlett Johansson's hotness, Bay really should stop fucking up otherwise fantastic movie ideas.

I played with Bumblebee, I knew Bumblebee, Bumblebee was a favorite toy of mine. 2009Camaro, You're no Bumblebee." For those of us who were around in the mid 80's and played with the Transformer toys and watched the show, the idea that Bumblebee is a kickass car like a Camaro is ridiculous. It's tantamount to getting Angelina Jolie to play Roseanne Conner in a screen version of the TV show Roseanne.

Don't get me wrong, I love Angelina, and I love the new Camaro. But, the new Camaro is far too cool, aggressive and big-boy to be Bumblebee. He was kind of a pussy in the old cartoon, and as little kids a lot of us could relate to him. He always had to prove himself to the other Autobots, kind of like a lot of us had to prove ourselves to our parents, teachers and older siblings. Bumblebee was one of my favorite Transformer toys. We had both the Yellow and very rare Red variations, the latter of which my brother found in China Town. As a family who owned a few VW's, we loved that Bumblebee was a Bug.

Apparently the story goes, that VW didn't want their products to be affiliated with the violence that is portrayed in the movie, and so they wouldn't let Bay use the VW Beetle to be Bumblebee. OK, sure, what ever. But what does Bay do? He substitutes the Beetle with a kickass car, probably because GM made him a great deal to use their cars as good guys. Not only did he pick a cool car for an underdog character, but he picks the same car used by the leader of a cartoon contemporary of the Transformers. Matt Trakker drove a Camaro called Thunderhawk as the leader of M.A.S.K (Mobil Armored Strike Kommand) in his fight against V.E.N.O.M. (Vicious Evil Network Of Mayhem).

Wow, I never really realized how much of a rip off M.A.S.K was of both Transformers and G.I. Joe. Fighting cars, trucks and planes in a duel with a bad guy with a snake name: Cobra & VENOM. As kids we really fell for anything huh?

Well, it's not as if we're much different as adults are we? How many people in their late 20's and early to mid 30's are going to plunk down $10 to see this steaming pile? And for what? To recapture a piece of our past perhaps. That never works, especially when a douche bag like Michael Bay picks a Chevy Camaro to be the one Autobot who had a bit of an inferiority complex. Michael Bay blows!


Friday, June 22, 2007

It's A Girl

Happy 0th birthday to my 5th niece, who arrived late Wednesday night. The little bundle of joy was a few days late, causing a bit of extra wait for her mom, but she's just too cute to be upset about a few extra days.

Best of luck to the new little family, and remember: Inky is always available for babysitting... but I'm busy that day!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

The Ties That Bind Us

One definition of clothing is: "Clothing protects the vulnerable nude human body from view and from the extremes of weather. Every article of clothing also carries a cultural and social meaning." I understand that early man needed to keep himself warm, and from getting frost bite or sun burn. And as time past human kind became ashamed of it's naughty bits and so we still cover them to this day.

I get all that. Shirts, pants, undies... these are all great. Even shoes, socks, hats and gloves all have their benefit. And you'll never hear me say a bad thing about skirts and dresses... because I look great in them, and so do women.

But what the fuck is the deal with the necktie? With father's day just passing, you know that there are thousands of fathers who just got a tie as a gift. Has there ever been a more superfluous item of clothing donned by humans? It has no purpose but to distinguish class, and perhaps show off a bit of personal style and tying ability. (The only thing worse than a Christmas tie, is one that looks like a third grader tied it. Incidentally, I've been tying my own ties since first grade... god damned Catholic school.)

I've seen all the history of the tie, and reasons why we still sport them, but I'm not convinced. I say it's time to put our foot down and speak the truth. The only thing a silk tie is good for is binding, blindfolding or gagging your consensual partner during nasty sex!


Monday, June 18, 2007

Safe At Home

There are very few things I like more in this world than Baseball. And with my MLB team floundering for the 8th straight season (although they did fire their manager today and are looking at yet another fellow Wop to lead the team in Joe Girardi to follow Lee Mazzilli and Sam Perlozzo) I've turned my baseball attention to the minors. For the last 7 weeks I've watched the York Revolution from afar, and listened to them on the radio. Sadly they play about as well as the O's, but that's OK. Because their home stadium is now open, and it's only a few miles from my home.

The stadium is not 100% done, but the parts that are in place were more than enough to keep my interest during the three games I went to this weekend. As the season goes on, there will be more and more new things to see at the games, and who knows, maybe the Rev's will actually start winning!

Below are a bunch of photos I took from around the stadium over the weekend. If you click on the pictures you can see a larger version. Enjoy!

1) Just before sunset, a view from the First Base concourse, looking at the big green wall in Left Field. I think it should be called: The Great Wall of York. eg: "Dryer swings and drives a shot into left, and it's off the Great Wall for a double!"

2) Here's the tiny little foul pole atop the Great Wall. The wall stands 38 feet tall and is only 300 feet from home plate. So it is taller than the Green monster in Boston AND closer to the plate!

3) A view from the Third Base concourse looking into Right Field, note the construction equipment in the background... work continues.

4) Looking in on the seating bowl from the little walkway that runs from the Third Base concourse to the outfield. At this point, you are next to the Great Wall, about halfway up it. This was my favorite place to watch the games from, and at some point will be a great place to catch a foul ball.

5) Taken from the temporary location of the kids play area, this is what the unfinished seating bowl looks like. The upper section, which holds the sky boxes still remains to be completed.

6) 1B Matt Dryer takes a might cut at a Newark pitch.

7) A panoramic view of the Rev's pitching to the Newark Bears on Saturday night. They turned two on this play!

8) A packed house on opening night, and the sun setting beyond the third base line.

I'll have many more as the season goes on!

Saturday, June 16, 2007

What The Fuck?!?

I went to the opening game of my home town baseball team last night, and I'll be going to the next two as well. The stadium isn't done yet, but that was hard to be aware of when enjoying all that the it had to offer. It's only going to get better as the season goes on, and I'll be posting more about this very unique stadium over time.

But, last night I did a lot of people watching in addition to baseball watching. People in York Pennsylvania can be... unique to say the least, but one guy really jumped out at the three of us who were there. I surreptitiously took a photo of this man and I will put a small copy of it at the bottom of the post.

WARNING: do not look if you are going to be grossed out. I think Inky will go a week without eating after I showed it to her. He looked as if he got hit in the face with a baseball... in 1974. And the wound has been infested with maggots and puss since. My guess is that he was a tobacco chewer, or had some kind of tooth infection that he let go, but it was fucking nasty. To make matters worse, he was hanging out in the kids section!

If you have the stomach for it, you can click on the picture to see a larger image, but I don't think most people do.




Friday, June 15, 2007

Home Game

My home town team had to play their first 35 games on the road, but they're coming home tonight. The York Revolution were 14-21 on their month and a half road trip, but the reward is playing the rest of the season with only a few road trips to go on, and none more than a week.

Basically, that means its time to Play Ball!

I have tickets to all three games this weekend, and I am excited to see the progress made on the stadium. It's not 100% done, but as I go to games this year I will be able to see the progress made. They still need to finish the concession stands on the third base line, and in the outfield, and The skyboxs are not finished yet, and won't be open for opening day. I think that's kind of fitting; the rich folk will have to sit with us common folk for a while.

Even though I'm over the moon about having a team 5 miles from my house, many others are not. A small, but vocal, group of hicks, hayseeds and rednecks are up in arms that the stadium was even built. They are also upset that it is being opened before it's fully done. To those people I say this: Fuck you. We got our way, now deal with it.


Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Who’s Watching the Watches?

It depends on who you believe: your eyes, or the White house. Either some Albanian stole President Bush's watch while he reveled in near orgasmic excitement over the fact that a group of people were actually this pumped to see him. Or, he was so worried that this loving mob might steal his watch that he surreptitiously slipped it off and either put it in his pocket or gave it to a secret service agent.

You see the hands all over his arm, and in the second link above you see that he is still wearing the watch after that moment. He then appears to slip it off, which says a lot about the man. Can't he afford a new watch? This is the Presidential equivalent of an old white guy crossing to the other side of the street when he sees a group of young black men walking toward him.

Mr. Bush if you want to have this kind of photo-opp you have two choices Mr. President. You can: A) hand pick a group of people to cheer for you, and hear you attempt to string a few words into a sentence and a few sentences into a speech. Or: B) You can pay the price of a watch to have people worked into a froth over seeing you.

I think this was all just a stunt for the premier of Bush's new show that starts on Comedy Central tonight. The watch will turn up sooner or later.


Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Everyday Annoyance

I can't tell you how often I feel like rear ending someone and dragging them kicking and screaming from their car. What provokes this feeling in me? People who don't know how to use a fucking turn signal. Every day when I leave my house I have to sit and wait at a busy intersection, which is just part of life. What drives me crazy, however, is the people who come barreling down the road, only to turn on to the street that I am waiting on. If they had just used a turn signal, then I could have pulled out earlier, thus keeping myself from being robbed of a few more seconds of my life.

The only thing I hate more than people who don't use a turn signal is the people who use it... as they are turning or way before they do. Listen up fuckwits: The turn signal is there to tell people you intend to turn. Meaning sometime in the very near future, not an hour from now. (Inky says: no more than 100 feet from the turn.) And it is not meant to tell people that you are turning, the very fact that you are turning will tip them off to that. Nothing pisses me off more than a person who cuts me off, and then puts their signal on. Except maybe, a person who comes flying down a road that I am waiting to turn on to (with my signal on mind you) and then breaks hard, cuts the wheel and lastly puts on their signal. Those people deserve to get syphilis.


Sunday, June 10, 2007

Go The Cats!

The Orioles Suck, and the Redskins are shaping up to have another ho-hum season. The York Revolution are 8 games under .500 after a month and a half on the road. For years now my summer comes to a halt, sports wise, around this time, but now I have something to carry me through to the hope that is the start of the NFL training camps.

I have Footy.

After visiting Australia one thing I took away was the fact that when it comes to being crazy about your sports the Aussies have it over us in spades. Take your average Yankee fan and multiply it by a power of 10. And I can see why, they have some very cool sports. Rugby League and Rugby Union are good, and there is no greater rivalry in the world than the Ashes series between Oz and the UK in Cricket. The baseball team won Silver at the last Olympics and the Soccer team did very well in the World Cup. But, for me it is all about Aussie Rules Football.

So this weekend was great for me, since the Geelong Cats topped the Adelaide Crows after the Essendon Bombers narrowly defeated the West Coast Eagles. With this scenario the Cats are now on the top of the AFL leader board. There is much of the season to go, and the Cats want to be sure that they haven't peaked too early... but at least they've peaked! That's more than I can say for the Orioles. Oh well, at least I still have the Cats, and my countdown to Cal Ripken's HOF induction.


Saturday, June 09, 2007

Almost Done!

OK, so maybe not almost, but we're getting closer and closer to completing the sleeve on my left arm. I sat for three hours yesterday as Angel stabbed me in the arm a few million times, and the result is better than I could have hoped for. She was able to complete the nights sky around the ship on my biceps which turned out amazing. She also finished all the sky around the scroll and the compass on my upper arm.

All that's left at this point, on the outer arm at least, is the moon on the top of my arm and the sky around the serpent head. After that we'll tackle the inside of my arm which will consist mainly of the sea serpent and the water around him. There will be some more red sky on the Port side of the ship that will taper off into the eastern sky on the other side of the serpent. We also have some more water and rope to be done down by the elbow, but I would guess that will be among the last things we do.

As of right now I have 15 hours of work on my left arm, and with 6 or 7 more left to go, I don't know if I can be patient. I love what we have so far, and it's only going to get better. Stay tuned to TGWOOfY for more updates.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Embarrassment of The Riches

In a world where there are people who will never get to learn about basic math, let alone more complex things, it can seem embarrassing that we have places like Harvard University. In America we shouldn't be ashamed that we've reached a place where we have scores of top-tier University's. That is the benefit of economic success: the betterment of yourself and your progeny. But, after so many generations of success, we need to begin to use our acquired wealth and knowledge to benefit the rest of the world.

And so it was that Bill Gates took the stage at his old school. All at once the richest man in the world, and the largest benefactor that the world have ever seen. Also, the most successful college drop-out of the 20th century. He was back at Harvard to get his degree, albeit 30 years late, but more importantly to give a speech to the graduates.

I've read a few wonderful speeches in my life time, usually from Presidents, Civil Rights leaders and the odd occasional football coach, but Gates steels the show. He has instant credibility, due to his philanthropy. He also took a surreptitious rout to global economic domination. Sure, his path started at the Nation's most prestigious University, but he left early to make his fortune on his own.

So there he stood at Harvard telling the nations best and brightest that they have to follow his lead and make a difference. That the faculty, staff and student body need to make conquering the worlds problems their quest. The need to take on poverty, hangar and gender inequity not because they can, but because they should.

Take the time to read his speech and I think you will be impressed as well. Now all Bill has to do is book time at Yale, Princeton, Stanford all the way down to Tallahassee Juco.


Thursday, June 07, 2007

The System is Broken

After serving three full days in prison, Paris is getting sprung. That's unusual, because normally the guy she's blowing is the one who's sprung. This is the worst example of the American System of law breaking down in a long time. This was a small amount of time to begin with (23 days in jail out of a possible 45 for good behaviour) but now she gets to finish out her sentence under house arrest.

The should make her serve it in my house rather than her's, than it might be a penalty. Never mind the fact that she checked into jail late at night on Sunday, left early on Thursday and gets credit for 5 days served. But, now she is going to be able to spend the next 40 days in her opulent LA digs, with only an ankle bracelet to stop her from leaving. Do you know what 99% of Americans call spending 6 weeks in a posh Beverly Hills estate? The best vacation they've ever had, that's what.

What's to stop her from sending out limos to pick up all her friends and having a party at her house for each of the next 40 nights? This is supposed to be a punishment? Well, the next time she drives drunk or recklessly and hits an average person (they call us "normies") and kills them, maybe the family of that victim should sue the LA Sheriff in addition to the Hilton's. But, I'm sure they'd find a way out of that too... Money is Hot!


Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Eye of the Greazy

I went to the eye doctor today for the first time in a tad more than a decade. When the lady taking my history asked me when my last eye appointment was she was shocked when I said '1995.' "You mean 2005 right?" she asked in utter disbelief that a 31 year old male with 20 X 100 vision would wait 12 years. The last time I went I tried to wear the glasses only to get really bad headaches, so I just stopped wearing them. That puts glasses in the #3 spot on the list of things I most waisted my parents money on.

The list goes Glasses at #3, maybe $120. Number 2 is braces which had to be a few thousand bucks, but which I saw fit to remove myself with wire cutters and pliers. My father's apoplectic screams can still be heard echoing through space to this day, 20 years later. The number one spot on the list is my Catholic education, including 2years in the seminary. I don't know what the finally tally was on the 11 years I was in Catholic school, but one can only imagine it had to be upwards of thirty to forty thousand.

Good call Mom and Dad. You obviously over estimated our worth as children since the three of us you sent through St. Francis are at best non followers and at worst homo-non believers!

So, like Sam Becket before me, I'm going back in time to set right what once went wrong. I'm going to get those glasses... just as soon as inky can go with me so I don't end up looking like a total tard.

(By the way, if you click on the above image of my eye, and tilt your head to the side: doesn't it look a bit vaginal? Absent the eyeball I mean. Call me Georgia Okeefe, maybe I just have vagina on the brain!)


Monday, June 04, 2007

TGWOOfY Top 50 (2007 Edition)

Anyone who knows me knows that I am an incesiant list maker. I have lists of my favorite baseball stadiums, the top places I've ever been, my favorite records and of course the TGWOOfY Top 50. These are my 50 favorite songs of all time, and it was initally compiled by listening to tens of hours of music, over and over again to narrow the list down. As with any listing of favorite things, some spots change from time to time, and so here is my updated top 50. Click on the headers for last year's list. Yes' Seen All Good People fell from #48 off the list, joined by Billy Joel's Summer Highland Falls which dropped off from #35.

50: a-ha - Take on Me (-3)
49: Rilo Kiley - It's A Hit (New Entry)
48: Paul Kelly - From Little Things Big Things Grow (New Entry)
47: LeTigre - Eau d'bedroom Dancing (+2)
46: Counting Crows (-1)
45: The Offspring - Self Esteem (-1)
44: The WAiFS - Bridal Train (+4)
43: INXS - Devil Inside (=)
42: Led Zeppelin - Over the Hills and Far Away (-1)
41: Ass Ponys - Little Bastard (-1)

40: Archers of Loaf - Web in Front (-1)
39: Pearl Jam - Jeremy (-8)
38: Cold Chisel - Khe Sanh (+8)
37: Hey Mercedes - Playing Your Song (-4)
36: Lou Reed - Walk on the Wild Side (=)
35: The Cyrkle - Red Rubber Ball (-5)
34: Less Than Jake - Automatic (-2)
33: Liz Phair - Divorce Song (+5)
32: Frank Sinatra - Wave (+5)
31: Missy Higgins - The Special Two (+11)

30: Crowded House - Weather with You (+4)
29: The Smiths - There is a Light That Never Goes Out (-1)
28: Dusty Springfield - Son of a Preacher Man (-2)
27: Jonny Cash - Ring of Fire (-3)
26: The Kinks - Picture Book (-4)
25: Son Volt - Route (+4)
24: Beach Boys - God Only Knows (+1)
23: Don McClain - American Pie (=)
22: R.E.M. - Crush with Eyeliner (+5)
21: Indigo Girls - Least Complicated (=)

20: XTC - The Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead (=)
19: Greenday - When I Come Around (-1)
18: The Clash - London Calling (+1)
17: Red Hot Chili Peppers - Suck My Kiss (=)
16: Janes Addiction - Jane Says (=)
15: Jimi Hendrix Experience - All Along the Watchtower (=)
14: The Beatles - Let it Be (=)
13: Queen (with David Bowie) - Under Pressure (-2)
12: Bod Dylan - The Mighty Quinn (-2)
11: Dead Milkmen - Methodist Coloringbook (+2)

10: Pink Floyd - Wish You Were Here (-1)
9: The Allman Brothers Band - Melissa (-1)
8: Ani DiFranco - Little Plastic Castle (+4)
7: Sheryl Crow - Hard to Make a Stand (=)
6: Bob Marley and the Wailers - No Woman, No Cry (=)
5: The Band - The Weight (=)
4: Eric Clapton - Layla (=)
3: Janis Joplin - Me and Bobby McGee (=)
2: Led Zeppelin - D'Yer Mak'er (=)
1: Billy Joel - Miami 2017 [Seen the Lights Go Out on Broadway] (=)


Sunday, June 03, 2007

Thats My Kind of Injury

Anyone who knows me, knows that I have no love for the New York Yankees. Part of that comes from growing up in a Yankee's hot bed as an Orioles fan. The other part is my complete and utter distaste for the bully. I don't mind when a team wins a lot, just when they resort to spending four times more than most teams to do it. It has given me great pleasure to watch the Yankees spend 200 million dollars a year for the last 6 years and not win a World Series.

A few weeks ago George opened up his check book in an effort to stem the tide of the yankers loosing, and signed 44 year old Roger Clemens to a near record annual contract. After a few very ballyhooed starts in the minors, Roger announced over the weekend that he would miss his first start in the Majors due to a fatigued groin.

Let me say that again: a fatigued groin!

That's the best injury I've ever heard of. I had one of those when I was 14 and I got my hands on a copy of Hustler magazine. My suggestion to Roger, use some lube, and try to keep it to under 4 times a day. The fatigue should wear off.