Sunday, December 13, 2009

Papercuts and Post-it Notes

December has arrived.

A few unrelated thoughts:

The first week was spent in Oakland, California. It was rather nice. Funny, really, is the best way to describe the aforementioned trip. Vacations are a strange foreign land for me, and learning to relax and read a book is harder than it should be. So I slept a lot, ate a lot, and did a little reading, a little writing, and a little shopping. The weather was "cold" and naturally I complained about that fact. Erika's rear windshield was shot out Wednesday night, mere hours after she was talking about how her neighborhood was less sketchy than originally thought. Coincidence and chance.

Biking from Berkeley back home at midnight in dense fog and forty degrees reminds you how nice it feels to be alive.

Now I am home, and am alive.
After almost a year, the Walker is still going swimmingly. I am terribly excited for a few things in the not so distant future, including but not limited to the British Television Advertising Awards and Expanding the Frame.
Stories have accumulated by the hand fulls. Rather than my usual observe and report ways, I've just been observing, saying, I will do this later, and then forgetting. This week brought a good one, that although not as awe-inducing/inspiring written down, is still a tiny gem to be kept wound tightly in the arsenal.

One. A few months back, a mutual friend waited at a bus stop. He smoked a cigarette while he waited. A gentleman incognito (we'll call him BS for now) asked another fellow future bus rider (A)to use a lighter. A said he didn't have one. BS turned to mutual friend. Asked for a light. Upon agreement to let BS use the lighter, BS tipped his sunglasses, peered over the lenses, and said, "It's me! Bruce Springsteen!" It actually was.
My obligatory Top Records of 2009 is currently being compiled and shaped by yours truly. It's hard to believe that another year has passed by, seemingly under the radar. A lot happened over the course of the year. We'll leave it at that. While I am unsure of merits as of just yet, here is my unofficial list, as of nine o'clock this morning:

Neko Case "Middle Cyclone"
Grizzly Bear "Veckatimest"
Yo La Tengo "Popular Songs"
The Antlers "Hospice"
Camera Obscura "My Maudlin Career"
M. Ward "Hold Time"
Papercuts "You Can Have What You Want"
Real Estate "S/T"
Fruit Bats "Ruminant Band"
Cass McCombs "Catacombs"
Phoenix "Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix"
Bowerbirds "Upper Air"

Sunday, November 1, 2009

one. i remember learning how to dive.
two. i never climbed trees as a child.
three. yellow and red leaves are better than green.
four. autumn is the best season.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

it's cool, i'm lazy.

no post in quite a while.

this should tide you over--
Libra:. Opportunities are fleeting. Move fast to catch up to where you know you need to be. No need for fond farewells. No need for graceful movement as you transfer. Simply gather yourself and go.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

I cannot talk fast enough

I am beaming. So, apology is coming at the beginning rather than the end.

This week started on a funny note-- missed connection on craigslist. They are total head-scratchers.
To the blond girl with glasses wearing a black and white striped shirt, enjoying the surly bender at the mates of state show last night - seen you around town a few times. Just wanted to write and tell you you're beautiful. Just... yeah. See you around, hopefully.

Part of me had an entirely cynical response. The other part found it endearing and felt hopeful for people. Why? I don't know.

Today, I showed up for work with little work to do. On my break I stopped at Kowalski's for Kombucha and Walgreens for Skor/Sour Patch Kids. I have a steady, healthy diet. I soon realized that my road trip to Oakland/San Francisco is sooner than I think and should look for stuff to do. Done. Within three minutes I found two things: Camera Obscura on the eighth of June and Neko Case on the ninth.

So as if my brain were not already full up, while driving on Franklin, (Neko Case and sunglasses on) and kept jumping back and forth between thoughts. And then, I may have run a stoplight. I say may because there were extenuating circumstances. So then my mind reversed and questioned if I did in fact run a light or not. This story to be continued.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

longest weekend ever.

Ohio was the longest weekend ever. Friday night was spent in a desolate cabin with no heat. And of course I forgot to bring even a sweatshirt, so I slept with one blanket, yoga pants, a tee shirt and my jacket in 37 degrees. Wonderful. Then Saturday was the bridal shower. Enough said.

This morning I woke up early and decided to run errands. So I called a friend and made him tag along.

We were driving on 394 from Costco and I had this epiphany. Every time I am in a remote location, I find myself at fucking Walmart. Literally, every random trip I have taken in po-dunk America, I have ended up at a Walmart in the middle of God's territory, usually in the wee hours of the morning.

It should be noted that I never stepped foot in a Walmart in Minnesota while growing up.

So what is it about this empire we so lovingly call Walmart that lures me in when I am trapped or perhaps traveling through America's heartland?

Maybe it is that they have low, low prices. Or maybe the fact that it is the staple place found in every city that you know is open 24-7. It should also be noted that nine times out of ten I am heavily intoxicated when at Walmart. This brings up yet another question. What is the allure of Walmart, in the middle of nowhere, when intoxicated?

Really, I have no answers. All I have is photographs from excursions to various Walmarts throughout the years to prove I was there.

Friday, February 20, 2009

To a wonderful pooch.

Off to a better place where amazing dogs go.

And if the movie I watched as a little kid is right, he's going to heaven.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

your hand is right in front of me

Almost two years has passed since I last saw a particular movie. I'd like to think that I am over my phase of terrible movie watching. I will not, however, lie to myself. I will always watch terrible movies.

That said. A quote came to mind today.


Really, it kind of baffles me that I liked Buffalo '66 so much for so long. I also really liked Empire Records a lot for a long time. I think this is for a few reasons:

A. I had this dream of working in a record store
B. '90's stupid teen counter-culture film
C. Ethan Embry
D. Rex Manning
E. Liv Tyler's horrible acting and how she always looks like she is on the verge of crying.
F. Young Renee Zellweger also always looking as if on the verge of crying
G. A crush on AJ. He was a dreamer.

oh, and H. The angsty young Robin Tunney who ended up being the model for Built By Wendy
to this:

So all of those reasons, but I still identify how annoying and terrible it is/was.

Shitty films aside.

I have a lot to say right now but have been unable to talk about it. Whatever. My palms are sweating. And I have a boatload of new music that has been taking over my life.

And that concludes a nowhere post.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

I ran out of funny stories a long time ago.

I keep having strange interactions.

Perhaps it is because I have been working and writing an absurd amount of hours per week, thus incapacitating me and going extended periods of time without real social interaction.

Whatever. I think i should just chalk it up to nothing.

Even though I am over-worked, I am spoiling myself this week. Blitzen Trapper Wednesday night. Yes.

And!!! I get to go on an airplane in less than two weeks. And get the hell out of dodge for three days.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

I promise I have not forgotten about you. Not yet.
It would take a lot more than one week.
But I have a feeling that some day, I will.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

something witty.

oh, the burdens.
the future.

Wednesdays do this to me.

And no, it's not okay, I don't understand, today. You say, piss off, you created that title, and I say, Yes, I did, but today I don't want to listen, and No, I do not have the answers.

I made a list with my friend Kayla, and I think perhaps, we will be each others saving grace.

There is this problem I have, where I forget to live in the present. Some call it a visionary, constantly striving towards new thoughts and ideals. Yet I call it impractical.

This goes for everything in my life. Even others have turned me into this visionary. Instead of focusing on what I need to do now, I dream of what I could be doing in my future life.

Today, for instance, I came back from my lunch break. As I rounded the corner up the stairs, I literally ran (almost) into (one of) my favorite people ever. Cary Waterman. In the flesh. She's my writing mentor who has no idea that she is my writing mentor, who I am unabashedly in love with, yet she will never know just how fond of her I am. She smiled and said, No way, I was just thinking of you two seconds ago when I saw this woman in a skirt and thought, That is going to be Emily in two years, and there you are now!

We then talked about my internship and life and how excited she was to be seeing book/arts.

Getting back to my original point though, she brought up Emily in two years. Not me now. Or even in a few days for that matter. It seems everyone has these illusions of grandeur for me, including myself, but I cannot seem to put my shoes on the right feet, let alone tie them right now.

So basically, as it stands, I feel like I am all talk and little (to no) action.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Here I am, Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I'm yours)


So much, so little time. It's been far too long since I sat. Let alone written in this beast.

After I ran errands this morning for the coffee shop, I sat at the bar with a friend and read our horoscopes aloud. His were conveluded and made no sense - He is Aries/Pisces - and mine was spot on, as per usual. We collectively decided that the Libra horoscopes may as well be personally addressed to me.

I cannot recall this weekend vividly - I worked the entire time and did some sleeping.

One thing I have done, however, is keep up with my weekly task of purchasing a new record. Two weeks ago was Andrew Bird's new one "Noble Beast" which, similar to his other records, is a nice cohesive unit with three/four standout songs.

Last week I purchased the Bon Iver's 4-song "Blood Bank." Sound wise, it is not unlike "For Emma, Forever Ago." Blood Bank and the other two songs at the beginning are great, however, the last song could really have been omitted. Hello autotune/vocal bending. It is as if Bon Iver had a love affair with Imogen Heap and things went terribly wrong.

As for this week, I am unsure what I will get. Part of me wants to re-purchase "Pet Sounds" because I lost my copy. But perhaps I will take a week or two off and wait for the new Neko Case and Beirut.

I'm boring.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Sitting in the library with too much to do.

There reached a point today where I realized that if I didn't have to look at another computer screen for a long, long time, that I would be all right with that.

Since I decided grocery shopping is a wiser decision than eating out everyday, I now bring my lunch to either school or work. Although cost-efficient, I no longer take the breaks I used to. Pretty soon, I am going to have a rectangular blob burned into my eyeballs. Neat.

Also, I realized that any and all of the bitching I have been doing as of late is completely self-inflicted. Sure, you need a shift covered? I'll be your go-to. Need a ride? Or anything? Cool. I don't need sleep or time off. Resulting, I whine.

Today I was asked to write for the Walker film/video blog. Although ecstatic (which I kept entirely to myself), I was asked to write a bio for myself. I detest having to write - I mean actually write about accomplishments/self indulged/not relating to the banter I write about in here - about myself. It makes me uneasy. Whatever, just chalk it up to one more thing that makes me uncomfortable, not unlike condensation, sharing elevators, etc.

Of course in listing a bit of information about myself, I failed to mention my favorite movie. I did this for a few reasons. A. I don't really have a favorite movie, similar to how I don't really have a favorite band. B. This relates directly to my anxiety that occurs when record shopping because I feel that people are constantly breathing down my neck and judging my selection. and lastly, C. I literally over-looked the subject.

So when my co-worker was going through my ramble, attempting to put together an "about me", he commented that I didn't list a favorite movie, and that if I do grant him permission to put that in the bio without telling him what in fact my favorite movie is, that he would insert Weekend at Bernie's 2 in the slot.

Part of me wanted to grant permission and not say my favorite film.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

so it's tuesday

I think my computer is finally going to computer heaven. All day it has been acting up. If it does in fact die, don't put it past me to have a computer funeral. I'm not joking.

Really, I am lacking funny and/or poignant stories as of late.

Upon arriving to the office today, I recalled my anagram and decided that I was not pleased with Manhole Yins, the only one I could recall, so I plugged my name into another generator - mind you, this was the first "task" I chose to take on today - and found two great new anagrams.
One: Hymnal Noise
Two: Mean Shy Lion

I prefer the latter.

Monday, January 19, 2009


In honor of MLK day, I took part in my annual tradition of thrifting. As if MLK the man was not good enough, the lovely people at Unique and Arc's have 50% off on his nat'l holiday. Hooray for me!

I spent a whopping thirteen dollars. And I got:
One brooch
Two pairs of earings
One red/orange paisley vintage dress
One white cardigan
One white sweater vest
One belt
One wood mounted owl print
One silk neck scarf

Thanks, MLK.

Also yesterday I spoiled myself by purchasing:

Tomorrow's purchase is the new Andrew Bird record.
Then a trip to the bank.

Sorry I am not wittier today, or talking about anything of any substance.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

did i mention how good it feels?

I could have sworn I got hit by a bus yesterday evening.

One gas station donut and two ibuprofen later, I went to the hex to see some old friends.
This is what I found:

EltonJohnson +1

Tim and AlexanderAugustJohnson

Elizabeth and Donovan

And the Reunification of Cookie & Cream, also known as bestfriendsforever.

Needless to say, the reunification process was rather smooth. The countries are now one, again. Thanks.

Friday, January 16, 2009

scratch neko case.

I say this, because, well, I have found my new re-discovered love to be behind me. Okay, perhaps not a person. A band, more so, and to be particular a song.
Razzle Dazzle Rose. Camera Obscura. And start playing... now.

Although the record was released in 2006, I lost and or sold my old copy, realized this sadly monday, and purchased it yet again. This seems to be my thing lately, re-purchasing records.

About this song, it is everything you could ever want and more.

As for tomorrow night, I cannot decide where my destination is quite yet. I may stop by the hex to see some old friends from Jersey play.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

jesus don't cry.

I wonder how many times in my life I will reference Wilco. It is starting to appear that I constantly make mention of them and Jeff Tweedy. Really, they don't consume my thoughts, I swear. It sometimes just happens to seem that way, especially when it is January, especially if it is either cold or fall, or I am in love, or not in love. You get what I mean. It reminds me of the Neko Case mention I made a few days ago. Sometimes you just need a soundtrack, you know?

All right.

I have been writing one million short stories this evening. I decided tonight that I have to be a bit more Gun-ho! about my self-inflicted assignments. Chances are, by the end of this whole debacle, not only I but also the people who have to read them will be terribly, terribly sick of my writing and consequently my writing style. Sorry, suckers.

I also decided to stop lying by writing fiction. Yes, to whomever asked, this is all true, get over it.

But in other news, I just dug through my massive pit of microsoft word documents and found some pretty funny lyrics that christopherstewartjohnson and I penned a few years ago. That felt pretty good.

Then, in the usual way my brain and subsequent memory works, I started thinking about my guitars. You know, lyrics, songwriting. That eventually melds into instruments. Come on, follow me.

So as I was saying, I started thinking about my guitars. I constantly forget that A. I have three of them, B. I can actually play them, and C. Once upon a time I had quite a bit of fun doing that.
Then I got sentimental. For several reasons.

Here is the part where I walk through, in not too arduous detail, my three guitars (not to be confused with My Three Songs or My Three Sons.)

The Martin 12 String from around 1975 (the one on the right - a stock google image, by the way). It was the first thing I learned on. I loved it. A lot. The sound is unparalleled.

The 1976 Special Edition Martin with stars on the frets. The heirloom that I will love for the rest of my life.

The Kazuo Yairi Alvarez extremely limited run Natural wood with no additions but abalone inlay throughout the fret board (intentional) and a pick up (unintentional from the makers, intentional by me). It is beautiful. This one is mine mine, meaning I walked into see Jim Harmes with my dad, played almost every guitar in the store and insisted that although it was nearly the most expensive in the store, it was in fact, made for me.

Okay, I lied.

I almost forgot about my fourth one. It is hilarious.
Yamaha 1997 electric natural wood with no pick guard, or apparent finish. It rules- it looks similar to the Pacifica style. But it, like all of my other pretentious guitars, was a limited edition.

Eat my shorts.

It has a little Indian girl on the back, and also has my name engraved in the back, thanks to yours truly. Now that guitar, that one has memories. Without divulging too much information, I will say: Tom Petty, Jackson Brown, Kansas, The Sundays, and Mazzy Star.

Now that I have talked about this seemingly moot point of my guitars, I forgot what I initially wanted to say. Thanks.

locking doors.

Joey just locked Jolane out of the coffee shop. Customer locking owner out of the coffee shop.

And I just paid my Parking Violation, also known as Fail to Lock Ignition, Remove Key ticket online. Best thirty-four dollars I have spent in a while, I don't know about you.

Think about it. Where would you like to spend your money? Well, you say, I spend it on many things. And I say, Well, perhaps you should think about it a bit more, maybe take your keys out of your car and not get a ticket. That's one less thing to spend your money on.

In other news, it is the coldest of the cold in Minneapolis today. While running errands for the coffee shop - on the worst possible day, mind you - I caught the twenty-five pound bag of sugar on a corner and sugar spilled all over the snow. Which is sugar and which is snow? I asked myself. For a moment, I stared down at the snow bank and contemplated lifting piles of snow/sugar back into the bag. I didn't, in case you were wondering.

Saturday, January 10, 2009


hilarity. pure fun.
and you ask why, yet I say My lips are not spewing a thing.

Friday, January 9, 2009

I'm a Wheel.

I fold way, way too easily.

Truly, it is astounding that my house is not jam-packed with knick-knacks and chia pets based on how easily I give in to suggestive anything.

You say jump, and I say, well, okay, I guess, what do I get? And if there is even remotely a giggle or blush in it for me, I will. So now you know all of my secrets.

I lost a battle tonight. It's true. I raced with a friend, and I ran a tough, long stretch. Alas, he was victorious, and I was left with pink cheeks.

Oh the fun of Friday nights.

So when I said I wanted to be your dog, Jens Lekman, what I really meant to say was, I wanted to be your friend.

And when I said I wanted Neko Case behind me at all times, I was not lying. Sure, you say, Way to try and be endearing. I say No, that infact I truly want, "Go Places" sung in the background, preferably a few feet behind me, at any given moment. Or perhaps any other of her songs, given that particular one is the New Pornographers.

What better way to end this than with my horoscope for the day.
Your secret may not be kept much longer. You're bursting with strong emotions and if someone else doesn't spill the beans, you're likely to do it yourself.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


Some days I swear Neko Case should be behind me. I don't say that in a weird way, or in a tongue in cheek way. I say it literally. Behind me, with every motion, she would sing and consequently narrate the moments of my life.

That said.

Today is January 6th. It is 11:45 and I am fully dressed, fully awake, and sitting at school.
Initially I came here to get and fill out a packet to please the bureaucratic system, since I had no other pressing plans for today. I pulled up to find every parking space filled. Now sets in the questioning. Had I, the person who is habitually early for everything arrived late for the first week of classes? I parked, walked in, checked my mail, and sat at a seat beside a window. How could you be so calm? You ask. I reply without hesitation, I wasn't - It's a routine... a bit, if you will.

Quickly I checked my calender, which I so conveniently have gone without for the past three weeks. Alas, classes begin next week. As I thought. But this brought up a new questions - am I one of those people that relies on her calender?

I swore when I was younger that I would never be that person that heavily relies on a phone, a calender, a watch. As of today, I have officially become that person.

Now that the initial panic has passed, I am really at a loss of what to do today. For a moment, I thought my day was planned out - asl and film. Once again, there is nothing.

Neko Case should really be behind me.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Thanks, I know.

So i am still terribly bored at work.

Not only am i sick, but i am at a loss for what to do with myself. I have a pretty good feeling that this will become a common boredom relief.
I made a wonderful play list for work on Thursday. The last song was "I'm the man who loves you" by Wilco. Now it is Mogwai, "I know what you are..."

For some reason, I just remembered that in early December, a mentor of mine said, You are the budding Joyce Carol Oates of your time. I said Thanks. Quickly I left the room. As soon as I entered the hallway, I wanted to shout back, No, I'm not! But I didn't. Luckily.

However my brain decided to recall that interaction, I'm unsure. But what I am sure of is how weird things tend to happen to me. And how all I can say in return is Thanks. Granted, it is a polite way to follow comments, particularly flattering or complimentary ones, often times my Thanks leaves me feeling like an asshole. Almost as if I were replying with I know.

Kind of like if someone were to say, Congratulations on life! and I would respond with, I know.

It's weird, these idiosyncrasies we fall into.
Now that the initial post is out of the way, it now feels appropriate - more so all right - to make a real life posting. So back story. I have dreaded making a blog since the word "blog" came to be. Something about it felt apropos to nothing, or perhaps to everything every other being was doing. So I resisted.
But here comes the explanation of my folding, giving in, collapse, or however you wish. I spent Monday night conversing with a dear friend, to which we talked of pop culture, music, jobs, life, Minneapolis, the world, Minneapolis again, a bit more counter intuitive bullshit, and then we stopped. Literally we stopped. He smiled and asked why I don't write this down. I had no real answer. And that brings us to here. Now when I think/talk of my daily ramblings, they will go down in history, or perhaps the black hole that is the internet.

And so we begin.

Over the past month or so, I have been reverting in habitual practice to a younger me. Really? You ask. Yes, I respond. Then you follow up with a, How so? And then I tell you. I started buying records again. I know. Nobody buys CDs or records anymore. Tell me about it. Well quite frankly I find it to be sad. I cannot recall what brought me into the Electric Fetus a month or so ago, but whatever it was hooked me, and I don't understand why I ever stopped. When I was seventeen I used to go to either Electric Fetus or Cheapo once a week. Then, I had no real expenditures, so I literally would walk in with at least one hundred dollars to spend at my leisure. And so I would. For a seventeen year old, I listened to so much music. And although I have listened to quite a bit of music still, I lost that outing, the thrill of walking through the aisles and flipping cd after cd often times in search of nothing.

Yo La Tengo. That is what brought me there. I had lost my copy of And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside Out and nothing else would do - I had to listen to You Can Have It All. That was what brought me back. Anyways.

I don't think I have a real point in talking about the Electric Fetus so much. Remember, today I love cold medicine.

Back to my love of record shopping. It makes me feel like a real creep. Maybe because I peer over at what others are buying. Or maybe, just maybe, because I get so socially uncomfortable only within the confines of a record store that I become a jerk. Really, I do. I don't know what happens to me. Perhaps I feel like I will be judged on my selection, just like I secretly watch everyone else. Who cares. I just remembered why I started this in the first place.

I bought Apostle of Hustle "National Anthem of Nowhere" [2007 a/c] on Tuesday. The record, for lack of better adjectives is great. Alongside I too bought Blitzen Trapper's "Furrr" [2008 SubPop]. When I listened to the records back-to-back, I realized I made projections about these bands merely two years ago. AoH was immediate in terms of time frame - it uses similar song progressions like Broken Social Scene (who they are most commonly linked with - shared members, Canadian, Arts and Crafts, you do the math...), yet they lack the intended complexity of a twelve member band that BSS is, while maintaining and surpassing the ingenuity that I think brought most people to like BSS in the first place.
As for Blitzen Trapper, I have only given the record one go around. It hits on my previous projections (which i have not mentioned until now: folk inspired pop that dares to transcend the lines of past genre norms.) I would say that later I would touch on this, but really, what's the point. Steve McPherson already wrote an accurate write up about them and the record in City Pages last week.

I am looking forward to the future. Especially the future in relation to music. Wilco has a new record coming out, as well as Andrew Bird and Grizzly Bear, to name a few. Really, it should be a good spring.

Soon to come, wilco stories. And oh, the lot of them.

sunday morning

i laid in bed for the entirety of saturday. part of it felt great, and part of it felt terrible.
yet, as i lay there, i listed in my brain all of things i should be doing, all of the things i want to be doing.

so here it is. after one lost day, i made a resolution of sorts to a friend, and am now following through.

welcome technology. i now have a blog.