Monthly Archives: June 2006

Swampy Summer Pet Sounds

The hardest DC rappers I ever heard just got back from their European tour, during which they touted a new 7 inch single, “Swampy Summer Jam”. This shit is slamming and can be (& should be) listened to ASAP on their myspace page, Or download the A side “Swampy Summer Jam” and the B side “Can I Live?” mp3s from the Food for Animals website.

Don’t get your hopes set on buying that rare cat poop just yet (shit too late). Ricky Rabbit and Vulture Voltaire dropped the gem on the Bomb Mitte record label and only pressed 500 copies.

Check the images from their tour here.

food for animals  swampy summer jam

Here’s what the Euromedia wrote with a quote: “Food For Animals sind Ricky Rabbit und Vulture Voltaire, zwei Typen aus Washington D.C. und das nächste große Ding in Sachen intelligenter, noisiger Indie Hip-Hop. Soll heissen: Vergesst Dälek, Cex, Public Enemy und die Anticon-Posse, denn das hier vereint sowieso alles und sieht noch viel besser dabei aus. Die erste EP “Scavengers” haben sie auf DIY-Basis selbst vertrieben, eine abgefeierte US-Tour mit Q And Not U hingelegt, in diesem Jahr sind Releases auf Fat Cat, Jason Forrests Cockrock-Disco und Bomb Mitte geplant.

Ihre Beats sind unglaublich hart, vertrackt und trotzdem partykompatibel und Lyrics wie ‘I’m sick of escapist fake B.I.G.’s sounding exactly like rapists’ sprechen Bände. Kurze Breakcore-Attacken mischen sich mit rückwärts abgespielten R’n’B-Vocals und Neubauten-Soundschnipseln. Und all das geschieht mit einer Consciousness, von der sich die meisten Indie-Artists ne Scheibe abschneiden könnten: ‘We like existing outside of the US money machine as much as we can. I mean, culture is so fucked right now, and adhering to one set of ‘standards’ or George Bush’s moral center is going to bury us all.'”


Stop the spam! I have been recieving so much spam that it makes reading my mails very difficult. This situation has to change. I have enabled comments on my Word Press blog in order to foster feedback, not to let Russian spammers peddle phen-phen or any other pseudo-pharmaceutical. Ditto for my email form on this website. I have lost personal emails in the sea of spam hotdogs and the senders have been offended. Please stop it.

Other recent tribulations: the newspaper. At our apartment we recieve the New York Times only on the weekends. Yes, this means we are also members of Times Select and can access the entire daily paper online at any time, including the entire extensive online archives that the Times has blessed us with. But I love the print editions. I can take them outside, or into the bathroom for toilet reading. Or if we run out of paper. They are handy.

Last Saturday, however, the paper was delivered into a puddle and got soaked. It was unreadable. A wet log of newsprint and Clintonian images lost. This happens almost every single time it rains, even though the newspaper is delivered inside a closed plastic blue bag. I think the paper boy (or girl, or service dog, or robot, or drone helicopter…) is doing it on purpose.

You see, there is a clear split in elevation that delineates our side yard. When it rains, the water runs off into the street on the, you guessed it, lower side of the yard. The paper gets delivered smack dab into the center of said puddle, every time. Its horrifying to approach the freshly delivered Saturday paper with glee only pick it up to realize it weighs more than an obese baby. Unreadably waterlogged.

On Sunday morning I was up at approximately 7AM, and after making myself a cup of coffee, headed out to the sideyard to pick up the newspaper. Hadn’t come yet. It was raining. Under the metal awning that protects the entryway into the house, I waited… and waited. Like a hammerhead shark with my eye around the corner. I wanted to see what kind of inhumane beast would deliberately puddle my paper. Two cups of a coffee and the same number of cigarettes later, I grew anxious (“anxious”) and headed up to the bathroom.

After a shower and good freshening up, I grabbed my third cup of coffee and descended to the side of our house. Paper delivered, target puddle. Luckily, I was there in time to grab it before the water seeped into the plastic blue bag. Only a small section of the front page had been rendered unreadable, because I saved the day. But what kind of person wouldn’t deliver to the higher ground?

My roommate Ari, who is the subscriber to the paper, is the person I went to bitch and moan to, amongst others. She said that she frequently recieves empty envelopes inside the NYT. For tipping the beast. But how many subscribers in the city leave tips? Could it be possible, in the 21st century, that some grimy inky-smudged-face boy wearing his brother’s brother’s brother’s too short pants is living off, and supporting his sick ma and grandma and brothers and sisters with, delivery tips?

I don’t buy it. After puddling my papers, that papes boy can kiss the tip farewell. I don’t buy the paper anyway, I just want to read it in the bathroom.

More and more tribulations: I keep having these dreams where I am in the restaurant with crazy tasks to accomplish, but in these bad dreams I can never move. Stuck, immobile, with angry customers and managers and tasks piling up. Perhaps I am working too much, or internalizing too much of my work. No dreams are better than these dreams. After talking to the people I work with, I guess everybody in the restaurant biz has these dreams. Maybe the paperboy has dreams where he keeps missing the puddles.

I saw an ant in my room today. I was waking up and only had half an eye open, but I saw it climbing on my monitor, and then into my cassette collection. It got me paranoid that underneath my carpeting there is a terrifying infestation. One ant did that to me, because I am a sensitive young man who doesn’t particularly care for insects crawling all over my body, in and out of orifices and nostrils and earholes, while I am sleeping. It was no winged cockaroach, but it was a big and well fed ant.

Tribulation zeta: Hitting the street after serving brunch, I saw an amazing large and golden coated dog. It was leashed to a tree a few storefronts up the street, in front of Christina’s Icecream. The sheen on the coat was like a wind blowing a field of grain stalks, like Vaseline melting in the sun. But the best part was the tail. It was like a fox tail, but bushier and golden. The dog was bigger than a labrador, some kind of hybrid is my guess, and it was smiling at me.

Whistling and snapping my fingers at it, I approached, and readied the camera on my cellphone. Nothing would have brought greater joy to the 3rdarm than a snapped pic of that bushy dog tail on my cameraphone. I held out my hand for it to sniff, as the correct stranger dog approach technique specifies, but the dog just pulled back away. Not growling, or mean, but aloof and wary of me. I didn’t push my luck. Alas, the tail is confined to the bounds of my imagination, or hopefully as a speaking character in future recurring dreams.

Harry’s Cheeseburger Eating

harry1.JPG harry2.JPGBehold, yours truly eating an entire Harry’s cheeseburger on video. These are round, baseball size patties that are smooshed on the grill, smothered in cheese and topped off with sweet tasting grilled onions. From the famous Harry’s hut of cheeseburger in Colchester, Connecticut. Definitely worthy of a stop-off on your next burger tour.

I have the Ghengis Khan Star Cluster

Nothing fascinates me more than the story and thought of human beings with the unique signature of Mongolia, carried East to Europe and across the Atlantic to America meeting and combining DNA with the Mongolians who migrated across the Bering Strait landbridge and became the Original North and South Americans. What if it opens up some sort of proper sequence and births the New Great Prophet?

Perhaps an argument for a type of Intelligent Design… “Large-scale changes to patterns of human genetic variation can occur very quickly. Although local influences of this kind may have been common in human populations, it is, perhaps, fortunate that events of this magnitude have been rare.” …Or is it the background story and full context of Manifest Destiny?

Read the science knowledge: The Genetic Legacy of the Mongols


Old School Keyboard Interface

This coming weekend I will be posting mucho content. Included will be… a full length video of me eating a delicious cheeseburger, complete with grill grease moistening my chin; new animated gifs, showing off my new red white and blue American flag ladies windbreaker; the story of the errant sailor Ricky who I met and hung out with all night last Sunday, who is possibly reading this from inside the hulk of a Navy destroyer enroute to the Mediterranean right now.

Much of this could and should have been up by today (Friday), however, I am down in Connecticut visiting my family until manana and forgot to bring with me the crucial USB cord for my camera. Thats what happens to your memory after visiting Amsterdam a couple times. Just a gentle warning, kids. But while I am holed up without the proper means to connect my camera to my computer, I thought it’d be nice to reach out and tickle ya’ll with the Old School keyboard interface, and of course, my 3rdarm.

A couple nights ago, after the cheeseburger lovin’, my family and I sat around and watched television. It was a fine evening to have beef in one’s stomach in America… warm, dry air, partially sunny skies, strawberry shortcake for dessert. We alternated between the Yankees game and AFI’s list of 100 Most Inspirational Movies. Apparently AFI made some kind of business deal with Steven Spielberg, as he delivered commentary for their presentation and they rewarded him with the entire top ten, save for a bicycling movie called “Breaking Away” at number 8.

I dispute that “Breaking Away” is inspirational in any way save for teaching tiny tots how to balance on a two wheeler, but then, I have not seen nor have any future plans to see this film. Whoopi Goldberg also offered up comments for the AFI, though, and she loved it. In the center square we trust. It was nice to see some movies on the list that I agree with, such as “Shawshank Redemption” and “Harold and Maude”. But where was “Benji”? Where was “Incredible Journey”? Where was any movie about dogs… how did the Spanish language version of Babe 2, subtitled El Porqo en La Ciudad nose them out?

Babe isn’t a truffle boar with a highly sensitized snout. He is just a regular old pig. Where was Charlotte’s Web? Now that was some pig! Babe couldn’t read the hieroglyphics of the spider’s intricate web, or detect truffles living in symbiosis with tree roots, so what exactly am I supposed to be inspired by Babe to do? Leave home for the big city and learn Spanish? Nevermind that this is exactly what I chose to do following high school. I was self-motivated!

My number one most inspirational movie is either “Memphis Belle” because I get intensity emotional dealing with the enormity of World War II in my mind and the odds on surviving thru it as an enlisted human being, what it meant for Modern Times (the title of Bob Dylan’s forthcoming album), or it would have been “the Last Unicorn”, because I too feel like the last of a kind of special, mythical beast, though I suspect the rest of my species are merely locked away under a doom spell in a faraway castle by the sea.

Okay, I pony up the admission that I also agreed with many other choices AFI made, such as To Kill a Mockingbird, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (they interviewed the actor who played Chief, and he originally wanted to play Macmurphy!). But to choose the original Star Wars over Return of the Jedi just seemed blind and ignorant. In the first Star Wars, Luke blows up the Death Star with a single photon blast. Lucky shot. In Return of the Jedi, he impossibly escapes the exploding Super Death Star and also manages to drag his father’s body and soul out with him to a communal meeting with Alec Guinness’s and Yoda’s ghosts on the ewok planet.

What happened? Obviously the people at AFI didn’t understand Matrix 3: Revolutions. But then again, if they had paid attention to the themes in THAT trilogy they might have been so inspired towards future peace / machine and human collaboration / developing a dynamic to deal with both chaos and order… that the show would never have been produced. As a matter of fact, perhaps that is what happened, and so they outsourced AFI’s 100 Most Inspirational Movies to Steven Spielberg’s production company, and he made it easy for everyone (even Whoopi) by giving himself almost the entire top ten.

Breaking away… today I spent four hours reorganizing the attic, then ate wonderful baked stuffed shells for dinner and once again had strawberry shortcake for dessert. The extremely talented, eloquent and very handsome weatherman for Connecticut’s NBC 30 station, Garett Argianas, delivered the forecast plus some jewels of advice. He said that it was going to be a Heatwave for the weekend, three days in a row with projected temperatures at 90 plus. Also, he said that maybe this evening, being so lovely, would be a good time to mow the lawn, in order to get it out of the way for proper weekend enjoyment.

What a sweet and thoughtful thing to say, and so handsome. The man is only 26 years old and is the main weatherman in the number 25 television market in the nation. Maybe we could just thug out together sometime. I took meteorology in my one semester of college. Plus we’re both from Connecticut.

Anyway, I like Garett’s style and presentation, all backed up with the ‘ledge. It’s so important for a weatherman to be eloquent, for the trust factor, and I trust you Garett… I’d mow my aunt’s lawn but the condo association takes care of all that.

You know, I was watching Connecticut CBS affiliate’s main weatherman the other day and he couldn’t even pronounce “Alberto.” On the air he stuttered through it, then commented, “That’s a tough one off the pronounce.” He works in Hartford, the city with the most per capita Spanish speakers anywhere North of Miami and East of the Mississippi, and doesn’t know anyone named Alberto? And yeah, Mr. bigshot CBS affiliate Weatherman, Alberto also happened to be the opening storm name for this year’s hurricane season. Sheesh.

Garett’s prediction for a Heatwave this weekend has already begun to prove true… Tonight D. Wade and his big buddy Shaquille routed the Dallas Mavericks, tying up the series. Game 5, the last to be played in the city of Miami, before a crowd including Gloria Estevan, Patrick Ewing, Shaq’s dad, other South Florida celebrities and tens of thousands of fans chanting “Hasselhoff” everytime Dirk gets to the free throw line, is coming up for Sunday afternoon. The hottest day of the forecast.

Nothing caps off my train of thought like the words out the Big Man’s mouth: (Jerry Stackhouse flagrantly fouled Shaq in Game 4 during a breakaway dunk attempt by basically uppercutting the Big Man’s head with both his elbows, sending the Big Man through the air and into the first five rows of seats)

“My impression was my daughters tackle me harder when I come home,” O’Neal said. “You know, I’m one of the last players from the old school, and you know, you just have to take a hard foul like that and keep on moving. It actually felt pretty good to get hit like that. Thank you, Jerry, I appreciate it.”

Winning is the Point

After the last post, in which I predicted the Miami Heat would take the NBA Title for the East, my team lost two straight games in the West to the Tejas Mavericks, owned by a man Mark Cuban who looks like he sticks a kilo of white powder up his nose before each game. It kind of got me thinking that I had jinxed the Big Man, and I felt horrible about the post. Here I was, trying to show love to the East and to the Big Man, and in fact all I did was jinx him and his Heat. I really felt awful.

My sister chimed in with a comment on the post, asking, why did I care about basketball? Was I confused… didn’t I know that the World Cup is going on? Well, first of all, to address my sister and all her European friends, I am an American young man. Second, there is no one of Shaq’s fantastic girth playing footballs. My saucer eyes are entertained only by the big bodies. But to give a little update, I have been watching the World Cup.

Just last Friday we had a cableman on a same-day mission to the Grill to install cable television for the kitchen. Who do you have to know to get same day cable installation? The owner, Mr. S., who wants me to call him “dog”, made a couple of phonecalls and the cable was installed for the kitchen fellas the same day. Many of them are from El Salvador and it was very important for them to be able to watch the World Cup, even if they were in fact getting paid to do something completely different. He explained to the waitstaff that he made the decision to install a television with cable in order to… “prevent a revolution in the kitchen.”

So all the boys back there, even the ones who grew up over here in the USA are watching the World Cup and drinking beers and sustaining minutes long group-shouts of “Goooooooooaaaaaaaaaall!!” I work with Italians, Brazilians, El Salvadoreans, Morrocans… one girl whose last name is Fitzgerald Kennedy… all kinds of people. We are all getting caught up in the World Cup excitement, though not quite to the British level of punching each other in the face. But Shaq plays in the NBA.

worldcup3rdarm.JPGThankfully, the Heat came thru in Miami tonight and won a damn game, and I can post again. For a minute, I thought that my boasting posting had jinxed my main men and that they would spiral down to a Texas sweep. Didn’t happen, thank goodness. I was reading Eugene Robinson’s opinion column on the World Cup, titled Taste a Cupful of Passion, in the Washington Post the other day and he mentioned the story of Andres Escobar:

“…sometimes winning is most definitely the point. In the 1994 World Cup, Andres Escobar of Colombia scored an “own goal” — accidentally putting the ball into his own net — in a match against the U.S. team, handing the Yanquis an undeserved victory. A few days after Escobar got home, he was gunned down in the parking lot of a Medellin nightclub by an irate fan.”

In my posting boasting of the Heat winning, before they had even taken to the court and followed by two straight subsequent losses, I felt like Andres Escobar. Scoring a goal against my own team. Shaquille is a sheriff or a federal marshall of some kind ya’ll, you know he’s got guns and badges and stuff. To make amends to the Big Man and how I almost jinxed my boys, I mashed up my face onto Andres Escobar 1994 playing card. May he rest in peace.