Of what I really feel I needed to say

Continuing my latest obsession of cataloging and reviewing all of the records that I buy this year, two weeks ago saw new releases from American Music Club and Mike Doughty.

Because I've only named this web-log and bought a domain based on American Music Club songs, I should be all over this. It's certainly not bad. But it's got me thinking about the whole "American Music Club" mark II phase they're in, which sadly, isn't a phase at all. I mean, when Spinal Tap went all jazz odyssey at least it was different. The latest two AMC records have unfortunately drifted in and out of my speakers and I've barely even noticed. For that matter, I barely even noticed that half the band had changed for this record. I mean, if you're going to replace half your band, I think you'd at least want to bring in new sounding blood, and not just replacements for the old blood. Still going to the show though.

Can I tangent strangely here for a moment? Back in the mid nineties, and I'm not going to place this in context, my friend Maura gave one of the most brilliant arguments against killing yourself that I still hold dear to today:
But what if Ride makes another record...and it's good?
It's kind of my exact sentiments about American Music Club.

Remember when I subscribed to eMusic? Yeah, those were good months. One of the things I picked up was an exclusive live recording by Mike Doughty, and on one song he riffs right into American Music Club's Firefly. The new Mike Doughty record? Probably his best yet - certainly his best solo outing. The recipe didn't change but it just tastes better this time.

OK, "Fort Hood", "More Bacon Than The Pan Can Handle" and "Navigating the Stars at Night" are actually downright amazing. Stacie and I already have our front row mezzanine tickets - she has promised to embarrass me and I can only hope she makes a banner to hang off of the balcony.

Sometimes my feelings get in the way

SO, the big news is I have finally stopped using Patsy to guide me to places that I already know how to get to. For one, it was kind of weirding out passengers, and secondly, Patsy loves driving me through the ghettos of Boston, fancy that.

Anyway, remember how I totally wanted some kind of drag queen voice for it? As it turns out, the voices are pretty easy to record. Once you have the list of commands and file names, it's pretty easy to go at it. Plus, I already know how to use Audacity. So instead of:

# 'RbBack.ogg' => 'Go around the roundabout'
# 'LnRight.ogg' => 'Stay in the right lane'
# 'AhLeftTurn.ogg' => 'Left turn ahead'

I can record

# 'RbBack.ogg' => 'Hold on gurrrrl - there's a circle of death comin' up'
# 'LnRight.ogg' => 'I told you to keep right!!'
# 'AhLeftTurn.ogg' => 'OH MARY! Turn your clicker on, we're gonna make a left!'

Sometimes I'm angry that I feel so angry

So have you heard that Kristin Hersh is only making the best record ever? I'm not talking about the CASH pay what you want scheme for the new material but her 10-4 You project - for fifty bucks she'll record 10 songs of your choosing live to tape with a personalized intro.

You know, at first I thought $50 was pretty outrageous, but once I thought about it, I realized it's actually a fucking steal. My initial list of favorites is now being reworked into a list of favorite rarities that don't get played live often, if at all.

Seriously, I'm dreaming of other artists at a similar career level [are you listening Bob Mould? Mark Eitzel?] that I would pay to record some tracks for me. What Kristin needs to do is spread the word if this works out for her. Is what she needs to do.

Sometimes all I really want to feel is love

Pornography or music, pornography or music. I can't decide what to write about. Oh yes I can.

I picked this up the day it was released - I've listened to it a few times now. I mean really sit down and listened to it. Or had it on in shuffle in the background.

So. Generic. HOWEVER, I assure you I am still very excited about seeing him live next month.

I am not seeing Hot Chip live in April unless the show is moved to a larger venue, since it sold out in days. But the record? I picked up "The Warning" on a whim a few months ago and love it. This one isn't nearly so instantly infectious. The title track is just gorgeous, but I haven't really checked the rest of it out as much as I'd like.

Boston's really feeling the crunch of losing Avalon finally. Most shows are going to the much smaller Paradise, which is great - I just can't put off ticket purchases anymore since things are selling out there quicker and quicker as larger and larger acts are booked there.

Can I tell you a secret? My TomTom arrived Monday and I immediately loaded the imitation Patsy voice onto it and it's OK. It's nice to have a campy new tech toy, basically, but Patsy's pretty insistent on me taking Route 9 to work when I know for a fact that the Mass Pike is way quicker...

You don't even know the topic

Your OH MARY moment of the week:

You're starting conversations

I was going to write about the last few records I bought, but instead wanted to explain the reasoning behind my latest impulse purchase, a TomTom. I've obviously wanted one for the tech/map factor, and while it's not necessary in my day to day life, it would be occasionally very useful. When did it become so necessary in my life?

It became necessary when someone published a Joanna Lumley voice hack, that's when. Sweetie, you have arrived at your destination.

Additionally, I want the drag queen hack ["GURL, you done FUCKED UP now. I said LEFT."] and the pearl clutcher hack ["MARY! Turn your clicker on! Turn your clicker on, we're gonna turn right!"].

You'll drink that turpentine

So one night when Rob and I were researching Amway Sales Reps and Swingers online [I am CONVINCED there is a connection] I came across Michael and Vicki. They're swingers, not Amway sales reps. They're on the circuit, they go to all the events. With their camera.

In case you haven't figured it out, not all of these images are child friendly. Here's one from the "Testicle Festival". In my next life, I want the job where you think up names for swinger events.

I have to admit, I'm not really sure what exactly is going down in that picture.

One of the things I love about Michael and Vicki is that they are grandparents. I think a lot of these people are parents and grandparents and I just don't know what I would ever do if I found out my parents were swingers.

Another thing about swingers is that while girls can touch girls, and boys can touch girls, apparently, the boy-boy touch is OFF LIMITS!!11@!!@ Then again, I can't really see myself touching a lot of these people. Is there a Flickr pool for "SAD AMATEUR PORNOGRAPHY"? There should be.

At least they're not trying to sell me Amway.

You're living on fancy wine

Uh oh, uh oh, uh oh, uh no

So remember how I'm all obsessed with swingers and "the lifestyle"? Especially if they're from the south? Yeah, it kind of comes from out of nowhere.

ANYWAY, if you don't know about the lifestyle, please please check out an introductory video that I was only able to watch once, and for the life of me could not accurately gauge the level of sarcasm and snark involved in it. I'm pretty sure they're not making fun of swingers, but I'm pretty sure they are.

No way, no way, no way, that's right

So have you heard about the new Big Brother season yet? Anyway, it's like 16 strangers who the producers matched up as soulmates, probably based on the eHarmony quiz, but whatever. They're totally lying because two of them are already dating. I mean, they weren't even trying to hide it.

I was wrong about who the homos are. One of them is Joshuah, who only has the best bio ever:

He says he was a gay man who played straight growing up, playing football and having long term relationships with women. Things changed when he slept with his sister's cheerleading coach--ruining her cheering career--and claims that his family has never forgiven him.
I can't get enough of that. Seriously - I want every graphic detail.

A lot of the people on Big Brother have Myspaces. Remember that guy James I thought was gay? Anyway, here's from his myspace blog post titled "Drag, Gays, Tarantino":
11:20pm the clock blinked red, perfect time for the gay bar, as men tend to fuck, jack off, and or put fancy clothes on before going out....I mean there is dinner but thats so 97'. Once we get to the bar the Tranny at the door welcomes us with a disgusting glare. they tend to be territorial.
There's also lots of pictures of him in his underwear in his profile, which sounds hot but I assure you that actually, it isn't. WINTER OF THE COUGAR!!11!

I've been busy again at work this week, plus, I really want to introduce you to my new friends Michael and Vicki, but I'm not sure how. ANYWAY, remember how I went to an open casting call for Big Brother 9 last December? No? It's because I didn't write about it for fear it would hurt my chances.

It was partially exactly what I expected, and partially eye opening. What did I expect? To be glanced at and told "No thanks". What I got was glanced at, and they actually had the common decency to chat with me for 3 minutes before passing. And the suggestion that I might have better luck sending in a video and application direct to CBS.

What I didn't expect was the 90 minute wait that was really kind of uncomfortable, and made me re-evaluate the whole "I can be on Big Brother because I can sit around and be catty with the best of them" life goal. I mean, if I'm weirded out by standing in line and making small talk with strangers for an hour, there's no way I'm lasting in that house. Or any kind of endurance challenge.

Anyway, there were some really freaky disillusioned people there. People who had driven in from other states, and people on day pass from group homes. Here are the new contestants. At the casting call the Mary-In-Charge had a mouth on her that was just looking to get smacked - I prefer the Kathy Griffin approach of talking smack about strangers behind their back, or at least on the internet.

This year there's a whole Love Match theme or WHATEVER. I have three things to say about that before I call Comcast to order Showtime for Big Brother: After Dark.

1. Homo:

There's nine men and seven women so two of them have to be gay, right? My first vote is for Homeless James.

2. James! I think this is probably your love match!

3. If everyone has a love match, then what about this season's sole 45 year old? If last season was the SUMMER OF GONORRHEA, this time, it is THE WINTER OF THE COUGAR:

It also seals it. 2008 is the Year of the Cougar. They are finally WHITE HOT and coming into their own. RAWR!