Tag Archives: nostalgia

You Can Dance Right Through Your Life

Amazing sky last night

I’ve had this post started for a week. I hope finally posting it will cure my What A Feeling! earworm.

I pick up the bus downtown in front of a nice restaurant.

Several months ago I saw a group of women arrive at the restaurant all dressed in off-the-shoulder t-shirt dresses and tights with leg-warmers and heels.

I went up to them and said, “I recognize the look, what’s the occasion?”

It turns out there is a musical of Flashdance.

Flashdance came out when I was a freshman in college. I sent a note to my college friends about it and we took a guffawing stroll down memory lane.

I dug around in the archives and found the DVD and I decided to watch it last weekend.

Wow. What a terrible movie. I don’t think I’ve seen it since it originally came out.

My recollection is that I liked the movie and the dancing and the music. I admired the protagonist because she was so pretty and confident and thin. And she was following her dreams!

Upon my most recent viewing I thought she was an idiot and the dancing was mostly awful. What was her boss thinking carrying on with an 18 year old? Coincidentally I turned on a crime show and there was a guest star that looked strangely familiar and I realized it was the actor who played the boss.

The movie is just a series of music videos barely held together with a dumb story about a girl who’s welder by day, exotic dancer by night, but her dream is to join a professional dance company. All the women had to do everything wearing a leotard cut up to her hip bones. Even the ice skater.

Very entertaining in a purely nostalgic way.

To conclude, I leave you with some of the poetry of the songtrack:

Locking rhythms to the beat of her heart, changing woman into life
She has danced into the danger zone, when the dancer becomes the dance!

It can cut you like a knife, if the gift becomes a fire!
On a wire between will and what will be!

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California Girls

1973. Me and my sister on the slip and slide.

This summer, the kids across the street got a similar thing and I heard them out there squealing and laughing one afternoon.

This morning I bought 150 bulbs, half tulip and half daffodil. Take a second to jot down your guess for how long it takes before I whine about buying all these bulbs. When I do that post you can see how close you were.

One of the problems is I need to do some major excavation out front to make space for the bulbs. I don’t mind yanking the old dried up stuff out but the problem is that as soon as there is open dirt, all the cats from miles around shit there. The past couple of years I’ve gotten into the habit of leaving all the dead stuff in until spring.

But also, 150 – yikes. Then I have to wait all winter before I can enjoy the results of my work. Worse case scenario I’ll just dig one big hole and dump them all in.

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FIFA World Cup Games 49 and 50


There is is. Twenty year anniversary of Concrete Blonde: Bloodletting.

I didn’t go to shows at the Palace in Hollywood a lot. I can probably tell you every show I saw there (based on my ancient memories so could be wrong): The Bangles, Mr. Big, Concrete Blonde and a benefit show for Lee Selwyn that included Concrete Blonde. I remember there was a vacant lot on the walk to the venue and there was graffiti that said: Agnes Moorehead is Dead.

Last night we were at the Roseland. I loved every minute of the show except the talkers and that loud drunk girl that’s in front of us at every show we go to. This time she whistled through her fingers every three minutes. We paid for reserved seats upstairs. It was mostly all people our age in those seats. I used to love general admission even though I’m severely height challenged but now spending a couple hours of pushing and shoving and looking at the back of other peoples’ heads is not appealing. I liked the seats.

Everyone there seemed to have some sort of mobile device that they could check every three seconds or else hold up to record? Take photos? Twenty years ago, everybody smoked. The room was full and it was a diverse crowd. A little bit of everything including tons of young people who bopped around and sang every word. It was a slavishly devoted crowd. I’m glad we went.

In other non-soccer news, guess what showed up on my credit card? Yes, a charge from my old webhosting. You remember, the one that I phoned and sent two cancelations notices to plus responded to all their repeated billing notices with heated hysteria about I canceled the account only to be reassured again and again that my account was canceled and I would not be billed?

OChosting. Tell your friends. OChosting = LAME and INCOMPETENT.

Meanwhile, their system is burping so they’ve sent me (so far) 28 notices that I’ve been billed in the last 12 hours. I dropped a love note to support and they responded by telling me that I needed to discuss this issue with billing.

OChosting – webhost loserville of the galaxy. Let’s see how long it takes to get this straightened out.

Okay soccer.

Enough with the crowd shots. I could very happily live my entire life without seeing large groups of grown-ups with flags painted on their faces.

Damn you USA for getting my hopes up. I should know better. It was a good game but it would have been better if the US had won. Ghana was relentless. They were good.

Wasn’t it weird seeing President Clinton and Mick Jagger hanging out?

The S. Korea v. Uruguay game was also pretty good. I like seeing an underdog team do well but I like Uruguay, too.

Fourteen games left plus two Timbers games this week plus Eclipse. Never a dull moment.

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FIFA World Cup Games 45, 46, 47 and 48

Co-worker returned from vacation a couple of months ago and announced: I’m making a rubberband ball. Here’s the progress so far.

None of these games knocked my socks off.

I watched Portugal play Brazil. Boring.

How come the players argue with the ref? I’ve never seen a ref change his mind. I’ve never seen a decision changed. It seems like challenging a guy with a fistful of yellow cards is a bad idea. But they still do it.

The Spain v. Chile game was slightly more interesting until the last 10 minutes when they realized they were both going through and they just kicked the ball to each other.

That’s not what the fans came to see.

The minute the game was finished I ran outside. Due to the endless bad weather the yard had been severely neglected and needs a firm hand in every corner.

Today I worked on the berry area.

This is my second bowl of raspberry harvest. I’m not sure what to think. We’ve had the same raspberry patch since we moved in. We’ve never gotten more than enough berries to eat as a snack when working out there. I neglected it no more than usual. It’s a miracle.

In the background are the asparagus and baby broccoli I’m roasting tonight. The asparagus has been neglected in the fridge for almost a week. A bunch of unexpected stuff came up and we didn’t eat dinner at home as much as we thought.

Tonight I get to see Concrete Blonde – yay. Last time I saw them the show didn’t go too late. I think we were back in the car driving home by 10:45. I hope it’s the same tonight.

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I Hear You’re Driving Someone Else’s Car Now.

It’s tough not to love this town. Recently I was asked to complete a survey which included which 3 organizations I donated the most money to. The answer was: Native American Youth, Gay Pride and Spec Fiction Nerds. I was pretty proud of that.

So tomorrow it begins. This will be mostly soccer blog for the next 4 weeks.

Don’t give up on me. I write more about me watching the tournament than the tournament itself.

Even if you know nothing about soccer you should enjoy this Nike ad:

Nike Write the Future (that’s kinda a lie b/c it’s very soccer inside-y, but it’s a great ad.)

Here’s another one Socceroos v. Wild Animals that’s super fun.

I can’t wait to dig into this thing. I’m not a huge sports geek and to be completely obsessed by a world sports event for 4 weeks is awesome. Probably my favorite aspect is that I talk to my Dad (responsible for getting me into this thing) almost every day of the tournament.

On the transit mall. This is also the building where the parking management is.

Meanwhile, in unrelated news, there are about 5 bands that I would be willing to leave the house to see. One of them is Concrete Blonde.

This is one of my favorite bands of all time. I saw them play in L.A. every chance back in the olden days and I would produce the ticket stubs but they are buried in the garage and I don’t have the patience to look for them at the moment.

They are doing a 20 year anniversary tour for the Bloodletting album. (I know, when we were young they were called albums). While it’s tempting to be depressed about being so old, it’s also a gift. How cool to see one of your favorite bands play one of your favorite albums 20 years later? I wish everyone this opportunity.

Here’s a CB website.

Here’s a clip of Concrete Blonde Bloodletting (The Vampire Song) and Caroline.

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Oh Mama, I’m in fear of my life from the long arm of the law

I hear a lot of Styx on the radio which doesn’t bother me as much as hearing Billy Idol or Duran Duran. Most of the time I like it. But not as much as I like hearing ELO

Styx was one of my favorite bands in high school. (Go ahead, laugh. I’ve never pretended that I have remotely hip taste in music.) I remember crying bitter tears into my pillow to the soaring keyboard melody of Babe because some random 15 year old loser guy rejected me. Or that weird dance I went to at a neighboring school where they played Renegade over and over. In the beginning slow part you’d sort of wiggle around like some goofball modern interpretive dance and slowly bend your knees until you were wiggling and squatting on the floor. Then when “The jig is up, the news is out” part started we all jumped up and started dancing.

Of all the albums in my collection, Paradise Theater is one of the few that I can distinctly remember buying and listening to for the first time.

I got it in Westlake at the record store next to the grocery store where my Mom was buying food. Those were the days when there were little record stores owned by regular people who liked music and wanted to make a living selling it and music came in big cardboard envelopes with black shiny disks inside. The disks were wrapped in paper that often including lyrics, photos or interesting information about the band. These were called: liner notes.

When I got home I took it over to Sheila McCusker’s house on Timberlane Street in Fountainwood and we peeled off the shrink wrap and put it on the entertainment system in the living room and we sat there and talked and looked at the liner notes while we listened to it.

Oh, it says that Paradise Theater came out in 1981 which makes sense because “Best of Times” was our graduating class song. I was friends with Sheila in 8th grade. Maybe I’m confused with The Grand Illusion. So much for my vivid memory.

One of the songs I heard recently was Mr. Roboto and it’s hard to believe this was ever a good idea for a song. It sounds like someone accidentally swallowed a keyboard and then shat the song out the next morning. It’s fun to say: Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto. Domo. Domo.

But the lyrics are super dumb and, like the joke about Caesar, I never understood it.

It says stuff like:

I've got a secret I've been hiding under my skin
My heart is human, my blood is boiling, my brain I.B.M.
I'm not a hero, I'm not a saviour, forget what you know
I'm just a man whose circumstances went beyond his control
<…>
I am the modren man, who hides behind a mask
So no one else can see my true identity

And then the great reveal:
The time has come at last
To throw away this mask
So everyone can see
My true identity...
I'm Kilroy! Kilroy! Kilroy! Kilroy!

What does that mean?

According to my guide to life wikipedia this song comes from the album Kilroy was here.. I must have moved on from Styx by then because I have no memory of this album.

According to Wikipedia: The album's storyline (set in the future) centered around a has-been rock star, living through a disguise of his own, "Mr. Roboto" (according to the album's lead-off song), and caught in a world where music itself has been outlawed.

I still don’t get it.

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Top 40 Hairbands

I finally finished watching the VH1 Top 40 Hairbands of all time. We taped it and I’ve been working my way through it — what was the original show, 4 hours? That’s a lot of hair for one sitting. Plus, you know VH1. It’s like 1 hour = 20 minutes of content, 20 minutes of filler and 20 minutes of commercials.

Okay, so first of all, what were their criteria? I would never dispute Poison at number #1. I will dispute ’til my grave, Twisted Sister at #2. Dee Snider (Fear the Mullet!) made the perfect host for the show, but sorry, no way do they deserve the #2 spot. And if they included bands like Def Lepp, Quiet Riot, Crue and Kiss, why not Guns & Roses? (My theory is Guns & Roses refused to be involved.) And how come Slaughter at #9 beat Ratt (#11) and Dokken (#10)?

I made a chart, giving myself 1 point for every band I’ve owned a record, 1 point for every band I’ve seen live and a point for every band I saw on-set at one of their videos. I gave myself extra credit for bands I have guitar picks for. I thought my stats would be more impressive. I got 50 points out of 120 (160 with extra credit.) I saw 18 bands live, owned 24 bands and worked on 5 videos. I got 3 points for guitar picks and two bands got me 4 points: Great White and Tesla.

I thought it was hilarious that about 90% of the bands had some sort of excuses why they weren’t really “hair” bands. There was one band I never heard of: Steelheart. Must have been an east coast band and must have been really late in the game.

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