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").


decay & ruin
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Irving housing

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Like my brownhouse:
   roots rock and the poptimists
Wednesday, December 9 2009
I was surprised this morning to see that about six inches of snow had fallen last night. It may not actually have even been snow; it might have been balls of sleet. Whatever it was weighed a lot per shovel full, and it was so sticky it didn't want to leave the shovel when I went to throw a it aside. Still, with some effort and the banking of considerable muscular tenderness, I managed to shovel out the entire driveway in time for Gretchen to head off for her shift at the prison. I also cleared the walkways, including the artery leading past the brownhouse to the greenhouse. Despite the gauntlet of snow standing between me and my morning business, I continue my abstinence from indoor flush commodes.

Something about the urgent necessity of snow shoveling snaps me out of my normal urge to procrastinate, although at times I fixate on the process of snow shoveling and end up clearing far more than actually needs clearing (when I was a kid I used to make labyrinths for the chickens to walk around in). Today, though, all the calorie expenditure of snow shoveling left me famished and there was nothing easy to eat in the house. So I proceeded to make a huge pot of chili. It was one of the few times I've ever prepared food for both Gretchen and me without her asking me to do so.
Later as the sun was sinking behind the trees I became concerned about the weather forecast of a brutal cold air mass coming in from the arctic. I still had a number of buckets containing waterlogged topsoil and even semi-composted humanure (from my pre-outhouse experiments of this past autumn). I was concerned they would freeze solid, expand, and crack my five gallon buckets (this happened a couple years ago). So I dug all the buckets and planters out from under the snow, emptied everything out (except for the feces, which I consolidated into one bucket stowed beneath an overturned trash can). I also prepared a couple additional planters for the greenhouse, though I left them fallow for the time being. the fucking greenhouse pot overturns

This evening I found myself reading an article called "In Defense of Lady Gaga" in Slate. This led me to an article about "poptimism," which is a formerly-unknown-to-me backlash movement among music critics to the pervasiveness of "rockism," described as the denigration of wildly popular music currents when compared to music coming from artists struggling away in obscurity. Rockism is behind the widespread mockery of music from such artists as the Backstreet Boys and Abba. With the rise of poptimism among music critics, the idea of musical "guilty pleasures" is banished and, in the words of Peter Schickele (who is not a music critic), "If it sounds good, it is good."
Reading about poptimism reminded me of the existence of Dan Fogelberg (widely mocked by the rockist critics of his day, and later in the article I was re-exposed to the term "roots rock" (widely despised by the poptimists of today). I'd heard "roots rock" mentioned many times, but I didn't really know what it meant, so I looked it up in Wikipedia as well.

For linking purposes this article's URL is:

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