Sunday, January 30, 2005

Cancer-stricken journalist ends 'tumour diary'.

ABC News Online

Jeff is not alone when it comes to media frustration. The above link is about a man, dying of cancer, who posted the last entry to his online diary. Of course, I'll never get to read it because the article doesn't tell me the address to his site. Neither does the other three articles I read about this guy. His quest to educate the world about cancer and cancer treatment won't be seen by more than a few thousand people. Thanks a lot, media.

Saturday, January 29, 2005

Super Bowl notes: Bomb threat suspect arrested - NFL/PLAYOFFS04

After reading this article I realized for the very first time that Jacksonville is in Florida. For some reason I thought it was in North Carolina. And yes, i'm in grad school.

Thursday, January 27, 2005 Books: The Family Circus Books: The Family Circus

Open letter to Jeoffroi: I have a new idea for creative writing. Click the link above. What if we posted reviews like these on Amazon and then blogged the links? Be sure to check all of the Keane books, especially "I Had a Frightmare".

Anyway, today my mother went to the new Subway in Akron (that's the restaurant, and the villiage in New York). She tried to pay for four subs with a credit card, but they didn't have a credit card system installed, and I had to drive to the bank, get some cash and go pay for them myself. Problem is, we have a puppy, and the phone woke it up. When the dog wakes up, that means it also has to go to the bathroom. I decided to take it for a quick walk while my car warmed up. When it was done, uh, walking, I put it in the car and drive the 1.2 miles to Subway. Remember: 1.2 miles.

The dog whined the whole way. I assumed that was because it doesn't spend much time in cars; at least, it'd never been in a car with me. But then the backseat became eerily silent. I've quickly learned that silence means the dog is up to something. That's when I smelled the answer. I won't bother you with details but I do need my car cleaned. Apparently after all that, uh, walking, my dog grew a new set of legs. Of logs. Whatever.

New CD reviews:

The Donnas: Gold Medal. Mine came with a DVD and a felt, blacklight poster-type cover. Lots of people compare them to the Ramones but they're a lot more like AC/DC. Good stuff.

Brian Wilson: SMiLE. Freaking amazing. Sadly, the best album of 2004?

Blood Sweat & Tears: various. A mix CD of leftover tracks on my hard drive. I should buy one of their albums. Great horn work. Reminds of early mornings in Mark "The Shark" Flynn's jazz bands. Their first album (1968?) is named "Child Is Father To The Man", a reference to the unreleased SMiLE album. Fun fact!

Cake: Fashion Nugget. I always liked this band and this album. You can tell it's a Cake song within 3 seconds.

AC/DC: Back In Black. It's good, but mindless. I got tired of it halfway through.

AC/DC: Highway To Hell. Same thing. I like Back In Black better, even if it's just for the Black Sabbath-like bell at the beginning. Still pretty good.

John Lennon: Imagine. Lennon can make me cringe; I prefer Harrison anyway. Still, there are some solid songs and an interesting songwriting style. I wonder how many versions of this album Yoko Ono has rereleased?

Phantom Planet: The Guest. I believe this is produced by Tchad Blake, which explains why it sounds halfway decent. Best heard over the PA in a mall clothing store.

Hellacopters: By The Grace Of God. Also overproduced, but with much better songs. Like AC/DC, I don't remember much detail about the whole album.

Generation X: s/t. Billy Idol's band before going solo. So if a band, not a solo artist wrote "White Wedding", that's what it sounds like. "White Wedding" is actually a pretty good song. This album has aged some.

Deep Purple: Machine Head. This is perfect for getting stoned to. And I should know. "Smoke On The Water", people. Like, bong water? "Highway Star" is also a cool song, and good jams throughout.

The Donnas: Get Skintight/Turn 21. I burned them onto 1 CD. You can hear the band get better that way. :) I really wasn't fond of the vocals, and I kind of wished they'd play faster . . . like the Ramones. I like the newer stuff better.

Husker Du: New Day Rising. The jury's still out on this one. I'm going to give it another listen.

Hives: Veni Vidi Vicious. Yeahahahahaaaa. This is a band that can put up a poster saying "Your new favorite band" and the statement would actually be true. They also tackle the problem of having a measurement of time not put into a base-10 framework. I've been worrying about that myself.

Guns 'N' Roses: Appetite For Destruction. Kurt Cobain and Axl Rose hated each other, and that may be why I never listened to GNR. But everyone I know who likes Nirvana likes GNR in the same way. And Cobain and Rose kind of looked the same, and were both bipolar . . . anyway, very cool album.

The Bad Plus: Give. Two words: Jazz Cacophony. Sometimes annoying that way, but there are some great sounds here. Mmm . . . "Iron Man" on piano.

Alkaline Trio: Good Mourning. If you like the album title, you'll like the album. You think it's a bland title? Well there ya go.

Anthrax: Spreading The Disease. ROCK! I have to hear more of these guys. And a pretty heartwarming memorial to the Holocaust victims, ironically enough. I thought anthrax was a poison, not a disease. . . .

Audioslave: s/t. Rage Against The Soundgarden. A better name for this band would be RATS. Decent stuff, but I wish the original bands would get back together instead.

Bad Brains: s/t. Totally awesome. Interesting reggae flourishes. Now I realize the Beastie Boys weren't punk rockers, they were a Bad Brains cover band.

Bad Brains: I Against I. Synthy no-so-awesomeness.

Rolling Stones: Their Satanic Majesties Request. I want the records to clearly state my displeasure with this album.

Pink Floyd: Animals. You already know what this sounds like. No real catchy songs like in The Wall, and that's okay. A pure example of a Concept Album.

Frank Sinatra: Sinatra At The Sands. Playing with Count Basie & His Orchestra, conducted by Quincy Jones . . . there's no way this could have been bad. Suprising to me, Sinatra has some great comedic timing, with a pretty funny monologue inbetween songs. This is surprising to me only because I was born in 1980.

Black Sabbath: Vol. 4. Pretty sweet. As great as they are I still think Black Sabbath is underappreciated. But if I had to pick between the two I'd go for

Black Sabbath: Sabbath, Bloody Sabbath. They pretty much have the same style, unless you're an expert. Hamfists of Doom.

Rolling Stones: Aftermath. Okay, but no Sticky Fingers. Still in the top quarter of this list at least.

Rolling Stones: Let It Bleed. Excellent, classic Stones.

Wesley Willis/The Decemberists: various. Another CD of hard drive leftovers. The have nothing to do with each other. I'm going to get a Decemberists CD someday, I promise. Great, mellow mood from them, and smart lyrics to boot. Wesley, on the other hand, sings the song "Love God" with the Fiasco, not because he loves God but because he IS a Love God. And he wants a sacrifice.

Count Basie & His Orchestra: Swingin' At The Chatterbox 1937. I think this was done as a WPA program. It's background music for when you read the newspaper. Not bad but doesn't jump out at you.

Iron Maiden: s/t. Punkish metal, excellent bass work. And I should know. I tacked on some songs by Meshuggah and it was a loud night in.

Parliament: The Clones Of Dr. Funkenstein. I better listen to this again because for some reason I was bored out of my mind. Parliament isn't s'posed to do that. Is it even possible?

Run-D.M.C.: King Of Rock. Old school rap is good. Treacherous Three, Furious Five, etc. This has much more reliance to the actual production of the beat, whatever that means. It's late and I don't know what I'm writing anymore.

Descendants: Two Things At Once. Pretty decent. Again I should give this another try. Catchy stuff, I gotta admit.

MC Chris: Life's A Bitch And I'm Her Pimp. The first album of geek rap from the artist also known as MC Pee Pants. I wouldn't take it in large doses, but it's actually really good! Huh. This album is available free from his official website.

Richard Cheese: various. If you like MC Chris and Wesley Willis, you'll think this guy is talented. Who else would start singing a lounge act version of "Rape Me" with the intro "This one's for the ladies"? Joyously over-the-top.

Thursday, January 20, 2005

Link Below: Best Article of the New Year?

Thief learns lesson in do's and doughnuts

I'm sure a lot of you are wondering and really give a darn about the daily life of TomServo0: the things he does, his yearnings, where he comes from. Today is your lucky day.

Many of you have the misconception that I sit around on the Internet all night and sleep all day. This is partially untrue. I end up on the Internet at the end of the night, but I am not "on" it for the entire evening and I usually lie down to use it. I do not sleep "all day", but rather during the daytime. There's a big, fat, hard-to-discern difference.

Today, for example, started when I went to bed around at 4:30 AM the other night. Usually it is impossible to get 8 straight hours of sleep because of commotion in the next room by people with normal schedules. Also, we have a dog that has to go outside every several hours. I was awakened at 7 AM, 10 AM and 11:30 AM (respectively) by the dog to take a walk in the snow, in my shorts, which I sleep in. It's bloody cold but my pajama bottoms are in the hamper. Schoolwork, chores, and the freaking dog took up the next couple of hours, and my sister and I had lunch together, even though eating at 2 PM for us is breakfast, or a really, really late dinner. (She works the night shift at a convenience store.)

At about 5:30 someone finally came home to watch the dog full-time (it's only a few weeks old). I took a shower and headed out to Buffalo to buy a textbook for class at Talking Leaves, which is the best indie bookstore in the area. My professor, who apparently thinks it's cool not to give out the reading list to the store at school, could have made things a bit more convenient. Talking Leaves is great, but they don't sell used books. I bought everything on Amazon and saved about $30 picking out used texts, but needed this one book immediately. Talking Leaves had a Textbook section, but I found my text in the Stacks for cheaper than it was listed under Textbooks. Strange, and indie store trying to maximize profits? Couldn't be. It was still $8 more expensive than getting it from Amazon, and I had to drive 90 minutes total--in a snowstorm--to get it. I should have used Amazon Express Shipping instead. Anyway, I went to the cashier and she said "I'm trying to see how crazy I am." She had her thumb pressed against one of those novelty pads that changes color, like those battery testers. I tried it and got nothing. She said either I'm not crazy or my hands are cold from being outside. I said it didn't read because I might be a vampire. She said the theory was worth considering.

I decided to make the best of my trip by studying at the University before heading home. I called my hetero buddy for life Joe but he was leaving the school and didn't want to meet up, so I went straight to the library. There were some articles I needed to print out for another class. The articles took about ten minutes to print out and fifty minutes to find. UB has a pretty good system: papers from the entire computer bank come out randomly, in stacks, from four printers. Then you look for something with your name on it. After that, I started to read my new overpriced book as well as some others due next week. My sister called sometime during that, but I didn't return the call until midnight. She was wondering when I would be home (because I owed her money for lunch) and before I could say I'd be there in a few hours, I realized my car might not be parked in the Overnight lot. Before I hung up my sister warned me that driving home would be nasty, and that's when I looked outside. The path I had taken to get from my car to the main buildings was now a one-foot snowdrift, still drifting. I decided to get home sooner rather than later.

But wait! This fascinating story gets even more detailed! I had a coupon to Taco Bell (buy one gordita and a medium drink, get a second gordita and medium drink free!) and felt peckish. I drove to the restaurant in second gear and literally slid through the drive thru. The Guy told me he could just put the two medium drinks in one large, which was fine with me, but he put ice in it, which wasn't. Like all cool night shift people, he gave me another large drink and told me to keep the first. I've been peeing all night because of it, but it's all good. The drive home involved a lot of work for my anti-lock brakes and a couple looooong slides part-way through some intersections.

I stopped by my sister's work to pay up, but found out she wasn't working that night. She was in the parking lot, however, hanging out with the manager of the McDonald's next door. A village cop car drove by about then, at which point my sister and the McDonald's manager started yelling and waving their arms. The manager ran out to the street and tried to flag him down. There was no way I could have guessed that the cop had recently been in the store and forgotten his bulletproof vest while running out to answer a call. Apparently he really hates wearing that thing all the time and feels safe enough at Uni-Mart to take it off. This town is a lot like Mayberry sometimes. The cop also knows my mom from church.

That takes us to about 2:30 AM, where I came home and read some snail mail. And here I am, rock me like a hurricane. The sun will be up in a few hours, so it's time for bed.

Based on the titles you must think i'm 45, but these are the albums I heard today (for the very first time):

The Band, "The Band": Excellent musicianship throughout many subgenres. Highly recommended.
Bad Religion, "The Empire Strikes First": Not a big fan of the band, but this is really solid. Check it out.
Bob Dylan, "Blood On The Tracks": Excellent of course, but sonically richer than most Dylan records I think.
Rolling Stones, "Their Satanic Majesties Request": Sucks. As if someone wrote their term paper while drunk, still AT the party.
Rolling Stones, "Sticky Fingers": Much, much better, and a good groove. Too back this disc skips a little.
Black Sabbath, "Technical Esctasy": I listened to "Vol. 4" and "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath" the night before, but this is right up there with those two.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Hello. I shaved my facial hair and went on a trip to my brother's house in Boston.

Tim slept on the way there.

Fanueil Hall (sp?) It's HUUUUUGE

Tim in jail

The Boston Public Library's Courtyard

This is what I call the "Jesus Room" of the library. Really cool.

Tim perches in the Virgin Mary cubby.

Tim in the expensive seats in Fenway Park. Well, they're all expensive; these are the ones with windows. We took the tour.

Red Sox Hall of Fame

These seats are OLD


Not so cool.

On top of the Green Monster. Neato!

The view from the Press Box

The view from the field. I hope you can enlarge this.

Then we went to the headquarters of the Christian Scientists. It was only $3 but it was the gayest piece of gay that could have ever been gayed. I don't mean to offend gays by comparing them to this, but my lexicon is diminutive.

Mary Baker Eddy made some bread. They made it an exhibit. BOO HISS.

The "highlight" of the place was a giant globe you could walk in. But the globe was made in the 1930s and horribly out of date. The light show was embarrassing. Also, we couldn't take pictures in it. Here's a nice looking room, though.

The watery fountain thing that they shine lights on. Yippee Skippy. This was the second most important part of the building.

Outside, it looks interesting. But it's not!

Cool bus!

Tim checks his mail

Tim at Bunker Hill. How he spent six months in Boston and never saw this monument is beyond me. It's like 300 feet tall, c'mon!

Tim drops anchor at the U.S.S. Constitution

Tim's room

and Tim's Media Center 'O Fun

The Museum of Fine Arts. With Miss Aretha Franklin, the First Lady.

A 1958 Porche is an excellent idea for an art museum.

Lobby. Check out the guy, just hangin' there! I took like 5 pictures of that thing alone.

I took too many pictures of the artwork, and for the life of me I don't know why.

Paul Revere! I know this guy! He looks like Jack Black.

Greek pottery.

In the same case. They ate and drank with this stuff?


Tim and the GF. Salad.

It's Massachusetts, I guess. WTF?

One more nice shot.

Tim tries to fart in her face. Tasteful!

Waiting for the subway

Tim and his roommate whip out the old 8-bit Nintendo.

Oh! A humiliating loss in Super Contra! They beat the game half an hour later.

Friday, January 07, 2005

Madd Dogg Conquers Buffalo


MaddDogg (4:41:10 PM): yo
Auto response from Grady52 (4:41:10 PM): I am away from my computer right now.

MaddDogg returned at 4:41:11 PM.
MaddDogg (4:41:13 PM): Is Tim home?
MaddDogg (5:20:24 PM): poop
Auto response from Grady (5:20:24 PM): I am away from my computer right now.
MaddDogg (5:20:24 PM): blaster
MaddDogg (5:21:24 PM): Iamtheultimate in eatingmy own feces
MaddDogg (5:21:24 PM): blast poo on my face
MaddDogg is away at 5:22:10 PM.

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Kurt Exercising?

NFC Board

Certain people make me laugh, like the ones trying to be as healthy as Kurt Cobain.

Archaeological Dig Uncovers Ancient Race Of Skeleton People

The Onion

meg (11:58:19 PM): have you ever mutually masturbated on a webcam
meg (11:58:24 PM): lol!
meg (11:58:26 PM): noooooooooooot for you!!!!!!!!!!
meg (11:58:28 PM): lol
meg (11:58:39 PM): i was telling bill about that weird bot i found
meg (11:58:43 PM): im sorrrrrrrrryyyyyy
meg (11:58:45 PM): lol
meg (11:58:48 PM): :-P
meg (11:59:06 PM): im getting sleepy Fred
TomServo0 (11:59:20 PM): that goes on the blog, megan
meg (11:59:21 PM): that ""was BILL
meg (11:59:22 PM): lol
meg (11:59:23 PM): NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!
meg (11:59:26 PM): no no nonnonooo
TomServo0 (11:59:27 PM): YES
mego (11:59:28 PM): plleaseeeeeeeeeeee??
meg (11:59:31 PM): no no no

Monday, January 03, 2005

Shooting an Elephant

Essay by George Orwell

New Year's Eve was pretty lousy. Nothing happened. Then I did nothing for the next two days because stores, libraries, et cetera were closed. Then the Bills lost. They'll be back. Then I was bored. Then I realized my "beard" is fuglier than a drowned muskrat. Tomorrow I have to start work on a thesis that I wrote 6 months ago, but sucked so bad I'm going to redo it. (Okay, it wasn't that bad, but I'm frustrated.) It's 4 AM and I can't sleep. Some New Year's Resolutions:

--Finish my effing thesis
--Go to bed earlier
--Spend less time on the Internet (curse you,!)
--Get back down to about 160 lbs. I have some pants I'd like to fit into.
--Read Cross' The Burned-Over District
--Get a Real Job come May
--Kill Flanders
--Finish my thesis
--Stop eating spaghetti and Chinese food by the pound
--Finally get my Dual Citizenship Card renewed ($60)
--Leave the house once every couple of days
--Never ice skate again :)
--Stop faking the funk on nasty dunks
--Do the Lord's work
--Find Sleater-Kinney fans, hang out with them
--Less chocolate, more salad
--Stop drinking milk and eating ham. It gives me the s***s; why do I still do it?
--Finish my thesis

Saturday, January 01, 2005