Video Fridays: The Flaming Lips

Although words can’t fully describe how frickin’ excited I am about having just purchased tickets to see The Flaming Lips at the Malkin Bowl in Vancouver’s Stanley Park, in September…

…I think I’ll try anyway.

I’m EXTREMELY excited!

…um…I think I need the help of Walt Whitman.

I’m so EXTREMELY excited that I feel the urge to sound my barbaric YAWP over the roofs of the world!

In celebration of this pending mind-blowing audio-visual freakout, this week’s Video Friday’s installment shall be a snippet of mind-blowing audio-visual freakout, one of my favorite Lips songs, Do Your Realize?, from their 2002 album Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots.

Happy Weekend, everyone!

Plinky: Start the first chapter of your memoir

Call me Ishmael…

…no, that’s taken, and my name’s not Ishmael.


In my younger and more vulnerable years…

…damn! That’s taken too. Bummer. That’s a really good one.


If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you’ll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like…

…nope, taken, and also really, really good.

Ok, so I don’t feel very original right now. Besides, all three of those are from novels, not memoirs…

I was born a poor black child…

…OK! I confess, I’m not black.

It’s interesting that this Plinky should come up now, since I’ve just finished Dave Eggers‘ novel, “You Shall Know Our Velocity!”. Eggers, is the author of “A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius”, a book known for blurring the lines between memoir and fiction. And “Velocity”, though a novel, finds Eggers continuing to play around with first person narrative, exploring how just such a narrator can dabble in embellishment and wholesale fabrication.

Purists probably have all kinds of criticism for Eggers. “Fiction is fiction and non-fiction should be factual,” you can hear them say. “If he wants the freedom to fictionalize, he should just write fiction.” And yet there are few words as stifling to a writer than the word should.

Perhaps what the purist needs to do is better distinguish between memoir and autobiography, the latter being a more literal, chronological, and historical literary form, and at the same time consider that the Latin root of memoir is memoria, meaning “memory”, or “reminiscence”. Memories are incredibly unreliable things, so why not embrace this fact? Why not have fun with it? What an exciting prospect it seems, to scribe one’s memoir with the memories we have and fill in the gaps with the memories we wish we had…or perhaps those we are thankful we don’t have.

I, for one, found “Velocity” to be a wonderfully experimental book, a book that convinced me to bump “A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius” to the top of my reading list.


Heaven, I’m in heaven

This is what heaven looks like.

In order to survive all the kvetching I listen to about the rain in Bellingham, heck, to survive my own kvetching about the weather in June, I take comfort in the fact that there’s no place that I’d rather be than in Bellingham in the summer. And, I get to live right here!

I don’t care for the 90°+ heat that is so common in most of the rest of the country…heck just right across the Cascade Mountains in eastern Washington. And, I don’t care if it’s a “dry heat“. 90° is frickin’ hot, whether it’s dry or humid.

I’m wearing shorts, t-shirt, sandals and I’m completely comfortable. Yesterday at 6pm I went swimming in Bellingham Bay, at Marine Park, where, when the tide comes in, it comes in over rocks that have baked in the sun for hours, resulting in the warmest water you’ll ever get in the Puget Sound.

When I’m not swimming, I’m riding my bicycle everywhere I go or I’m sitting on my deck, reading or playing my guitar, drinking a smoothie.

Heaven, I’m in heaven…

Video Fridays: The Beta Band

As mentioned a week or so ago, 10 years after I first heard The Beta Band I finally noticed that I like them.

Well, it turns out that I like them a LOT, and here’s the song that started it all, the one featured in that scene in High Fidelity.

(Interesting, just noticing that it’s got a kind of You Can’t Always Get What You Want-esque groove, and that song’s been on my mind lately.)


Plinky: My Weirdest Pet Peeve

Here's another Plinky.

Well, it might not seem weird to some, but the first of my pet peeves that came to mind was that not enough people seem to know what the word "accelerate" means.

More specifically, the official term for a freeway on-ramp is "acceleration lane", so named because drivers are supposed to use them to accelerate until they match the speed of traffic on the freeway, allowing them to easily merge into said traffic.

And yet, quite regularly, I find myself driving behind someone in an acceleration lane and they are not accelerating nearly fast enough to easily merge into freeway traffic without causing serious danger, for me and all those on the freeway. Vehicles in the farthest right-hand lane either have to speed up or slow down or suddenly switch lanes to accommodate the merging non-accelerated vehicle, and I become an unintentional non-accelerated vehicle myself.

I know for sure that this is not a mechanical issue. I've seen plenty of makes and models of cars and trucks puttering up an acceleration lane, when I've seen vehicles of the same make and model zoom right on up to the correct merging speed and slip effortlessly into traffic.

Illiteracy is a terrible, terrible thing.

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Video Fridays: The Big Chill

Since I referenced this scene from Lawrence Kasdan’s 1983 film The Big Chill in my Plinky post yesterday, it was a pleasant surprise to find that it was on YouTube.

I wrote about my feelings for and experience with The Big Chill back in March, if anyone’s interested.

Have a great weekend, people!


Plinky: Overheard at My Own Funeral

Ok, so I’m going to try out this thing.

The idea is that you register on the site and then you receive, via email, a daily question that you answer, and the answer gets posted automagically to your blog.

My first thoughts in response to today’s question went straight to the opening scene in “The Big Chill”, and how cool it was that Alex wanted the Rolling Stones’ “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” played at his funeral.

And so, as unoriginal as it might seem, not to mention an avoidance of what the question is really trying to get at, namely what I think people will say about me, I’m just going to say that, if I could be a fly on the wall at my own funeral, I’d like to hear that Rolling Stones classic, and see all the smiles through all my many fly eyes.