Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


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   good obscure Paul McCartney
Tuesday, January 7 2003

In a house of this size, I suppose I could keep working on odds and ends for the rest of my life. These days the work is all so trivial, superficial, and non-essential that it seems petty to mention. The main task today was the making of a door for the bathroom cubby, which is a deep closet perched in the otherwise useless space above the stairway (you can see it to the right of the sink in one of the photos I posted on January 5th). Lacking any other suitable material (it's amazing how few scraps we have in the aftermath of all this construction), I made the door out a three-quarter-inch-thick piece of plywood, which I painted with several layers of white paint to keep warp-inducing moisture out.
After a run to the bank to make our first substantial deposits since moving here, we hit Lowes for odds and ends, mostly sticks of trim and planks for bookshelves. We paid for it all using accumulated store credit for items returned, particularly tub faucets that hadn't been usable with our tub. Gretchen has completely mastered the Lowes return system and by this point I imagine she has figured out not only how to return barcodeless hardware items bought from other stores, but useless natural materials like bags of leaves and pieces of rock.
In the evening Gretchen watched A Beautiful Mind on satellite teevee while I napped in the other room. From where I lay I could see the screen and hear the soundtrack and I could just tell it was an artless, formulaic Hollywood movie. Perhaps I've been watching too many good movies and I've lost my ability to enjoy normal bland Hollywood schlock. Gretchen and I talked about the movie later and concluded that were it not for the subject matter (a crazy Nobel Laureate mathematician) it would have been nothing more than a made-for-Lifetime-Channel movie. But because it was regarded as "deep" (superficially so, ironically enough), it received accolades and Oscars. Sometimes I just want to sail off into the ocean and start up my own island of thinking people, but then I realize that in a few generations it would be just like any place else, as assuredly as the fate of the criminal genes of Australia.

Bored with my usual MP3s, I've been listening to Wings-era Paul McCartney for the past few days. I've read the mixed reviews, but I find I must disagree. I think Wings is terribly underrated and I'm convinced that Paul was the most important Beatle (followed by George). Furthermore, I have a feeling he is responsible for a lot of great music that I've never heard (I've haven't heard any of his albums that didn't include "Greatest Hits" somewhere in the title). I know some of my readers are probably looking at this page with horror from what they've just read, but if anyone knows of any good obscure Paul McCartney, please send me an email.
Tonight I've been listening to Metroschifter, a guitar-heavy emoish band (or so I think). The guitar rhythms are interesting to my ear - they're full of all sorts interesting and unexpected nuances, some of which sound entirely accidental. Another thing I like is the occasional shift in attitude, a dynamic one doesn't often hear in music. Suddenly the understated shoe-gazing vocals break into glam-pop preening and it's like when Kurt stomps on his pedal early in "Smells Like Teen Spirit." You know what I'm talking about. Unfortunately, Metroschifter does nothing of the sort; I'm wishing it would happen, even writing about it in anticipation, but such a moment never arrives. There are glam moments, mostly of the guitar variety, but it never comes with the suddenness of the stomp of a pedal.

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