Friday, January 22, 2016

Hey, smell my...

Air freshener!

I bought a little gingerbread man air freshener recently, as part of a 75% off Christmas sale at one of the local grocery stores. Through the power of online searching, I also found that it's sold regularly on Amazon, and quite well, too. 18 positive reviews for this powerful gingerbread smelling man (it's got to be a man... he's got a plaid scarf, two big white buttons, shirt cuffs and pant cuffs, and carries a [candy] cane. Unless it's some woman in drag... it's a boy.... right????).

I originally had him hanging in my closet, but with no proper air circulation, he's too cute (and honestly, the smell is too over powering for a small space) to leave hidden from view. So out he goes, and is hanging out on my light (yes, that's an IKEA lamp he's playing on).

Hangin' tough?

I do have to admit, the smell is great, but it can be over powering when sitting next to it for a while (like my desk is, to where he is on the lamp). It's a little headache inducing, if you're not used to the high potency (what do they say about "small packages"??). He's better suited to hang somewhere more open, or at least put on a table where he can stand and air out. Don't get me wrong, I like this little guy, but he's not so hot to be trapped the corner.

My suggestion, should you get him, is to put him in an area that has good walking traffic and good air vents. You don't want you or your guests complaining of nausea headaches (or, if you're like my friend who's allergic to cinnamon, to immediately leave and never return. Not that I would do that to her, but err on caution. Everyone has some allergy, and this guy has a cinnamon ingredient to him. My friend would kill me if she came over and smelled it!).

Outside of that, the (positive) comments I have been getting is "it's making me hungry" and "it smells like a bakery in here!". Which is a good thing. You don't want your room / home smelling like bad things happen on a regular basis (like those pesky Febreze commercials).

He's "not so clean smelling" in the sense he's not some pine forest or cotton sheets; he's a gingerbread cookie on a cold winter day. Yet... he does the job by making my room smell good.  Will I keep him? Sure, for as long as he wants to stay!


Pictures or it didn't happen:

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

I just need 10 more ounces

and I got the full 40oz of Freedom!

Ok, maybe I have a Sublime album packed away somewhere in my CD cache, but I currently have a 30oz cup of water in front of me.

Every time I fill the glass, I'm amazed I end up filling it more a little later. Everything gets smashed down and the lemons and limes get more soggy and tart, and yet, I still slowly sip my way through it all. 

I'm a recycler when it comes to these plastic iced cups I get from the java chains. The larger the cup, the more I reuse it for water. A couple times a month, I end up throwing the cup out and getting a replacement, as the cup becomes old and worn. The non filtered water here leaves calcium deposits on the cup, if not cleaned properly, so the cup looks dirty and unsanitary. More reason to go get a new drink... new cup! 

Not that I need all the added sugar or calories, mind you, but sometimes those fruity icy drinks are refreshing, and since I've started to re run on iced coffee, large (or extra large) has been helpful on the thirst (and bad on the wallet).

I've been doing a lot of "on demanding" on my Roku lately. The more I watch, the more I realize there is more to this device then I first noticed. For example, every month, the activation code for the channel (apps) expires. That means I have to go online and re-activate the channel, with a new code. Therefore, I have to sign into my Comcast email, sign on to the app site (i.e. HBOGO), and enter whatever code they give me. 2 minutes later, the channel is up and running and I'm watching what I wanted to binge on for the moment. I don't have Netflix or Amazon streaming, so I can't comment on whether or not those apps need updating. I've only been watching "basic" cable or HBO / Showtime. I still think it's cheaper (and easier) to have the streaming device, than pay for a lot of separate deals (i.e. "renting" another $10 cable box every month) just to watch two premium channels. Since I subscribe to a package deal with a "reasonable" rate [locked in price for a year], I can get the premium apps for free on the Roku. Just add the Monoprice Select Series High-Speed HDMI Cable and I'm good to go until the lease is up on the cable deal.

Be good to yourselves... Catch ya later...


Saturday, January 16, 2016

"They say 'Jump'"

They say hey that's really something
They feel he should get some time
I say he should watch his ass
My friend don't listen to the crowd
They say 'Jump'

Got to believe somebody
Got to believe
off the album Black Tie White Noise
David Bowie
(I only took the last section of the songs to post).

I was thinking about this song last night... if I stand corrected, I think the original concept was about Terry Jones, David's schizophrenic older brother (half brother). Terry had committed suicide some time in the early 80s and this song had become David's way of "memorializing" his idol (he looked up to his brother, as a lot of younger siblings do to their family members). I remember the video being aired on Mtv, and it was David in a suit, spending a lot of time on the roof of a high rise office building. As I write this, I am not looking up the information, so I definitely could stand corrected on it. I just looked the lyrics up, and left it at that (I partially posted the lyrics. Youtube the song if you can find it).

Some things just stay with you...such as the fact I remember the first time I saw the Sex and Candy music video by Marcy Playground. It was 3 o'clock in the morning, I had fallen asleep on the futon in front of the TV and I woke up with a strange ass music video playing... I thought it was odd as hell, but left it on as I put the futon away. I shut the TV off right after, and went to my bedroom.  Other things you just want to forget. Things happen.

But the whole reason I was thinking about Jump They Say,  is because it's meaning relates to the post I made the other day about db and death. The lyrics sound more trivial and political than he intended, but it's yet another point written down in the Reaper category.

I have a correction to make from my last post as well: I was asking what happened to the Scooby Gang and failed to mention other key players, such as Reeves Gabrels. Where is he? Passed? Under a rock? I haven't researched it yet to give a solid answer, but I know he's another long standing guitarist that was missing from the  album.

I also must point a "positive" out with this record. I feel it's a much needed throwback to early work (1970s and a couple from the 1980s), in regards to numbers of tracks and their length. I'm thinking Station To Station and Young Americans. I know there might be others that were put out with 8 or less songs, and at least 1 song had more than eight minutes in duration (See title track to Station To Station). Others ranged from 5 minutes and thirty seconds to just under 7 minutes. I recently read that when Bowie wanted to list   with a good single, he knew he wanted to keep the title track the length it was (9:47, or there about). So he picked Lazarus as his main front runner, because the download sites (iTunes, Amazon) didn't look highly upon singles being super long. Especially if you're going to judge how the audience accepts the music (rate the singles put out / the album as a whole), no one will want to listen to a 10 minute song, or at least accept it with open arms as the main bread winner for singles. But sometimes people do; it's a matter of time. That's why I think the title track of Blackstar came out as a second single.

I could be wrong.

"Quick" change of topic and to other news for a minute.

Some celebrity death round ups (only change is it's not completely about db. lol):

We ended the year with:

Lemmy Kilmister, the front man to Motorhead. He passed on December 28, 2015. I don't know much about either, but only know Lemmy had an unforgettable look to him - between a somewhat bushy set of Muttons and a black cowboy hat, I can't tell you any more. Motorhead was not one of those bands I can name a song from.

Natalie Cole, who was the daughter of Nat "King" Cole. She died December 31, 2015. I only know of duet-ting"Unforgettable" with her father.

M*A*S*H fans will be saddened that Wayne Rogers ("Trapper" John) also passed on December 31.

After this, the deaths take a slow roll for January. It was quiet until the fifth, when a French composer / conductor by the name of Pierre Boulez passed away. Followed by Pat Harrington ("Schneider" on "One Day At A Time) and big band singer Kitty Kallen on the seventh. Things got silent again, but only for three days when it was Bowie's passing was announced on the 10th. That got the ball rolling for the 11th (Monte Irvin) and Brian Bedford on the 13th. The following day, January 14th, Professor Snapes (Alan Rickman) held his final potions class. Céline Dion's husband, René Angélil, also died on the 14th. The 15th saw Dan Haggerty - "Grizzly Adams" pass away.  Even as I sit here writing this, I find out that Céline's brother passed today, January 16, 2016 (partial death list sources here)

It seems the majority lost their battle(s) with cancer. 

I'm bummed over Wayne Rogers. I think there's only a handful left standing from the 4077 and Alan Alda keeps getting older the more I see him on PBS. Every time I hear his voice, I just want to shut my eyes and forever picture him with high energy and thick black hair. Not that he's lazy-ing around these days, but the "grandpa" features (balding, salt and pepper hair) are messing with my mind. 

I vaguely recognize the name of Kitty Kallen. I have been known to have Big Band music in my record collection, so maybe she's on something I own. I don't have any of her albums, although I probably could find one somewhere. I know I've heard various people cover Bésame Mucho, so maybe that's the other way I know her. 

I can't believe Alan Rickman died, four days after Bowie. Both men were 69 and died of cancer. People have been joking that it's the "best age to go out at" (mainly because it's sexual). 69 is not "old" these days; it's fairly young. I know a lot of people were fans of Professor Snape (some Potterheads in general). When I found out, the first thing I said was "Wendi must be so gutted" - a friend of my mother's, is a big Alan Rickman fan, so I asked my mom to tell her friend I was thinking of her. I remember of the first movies I saw him in was Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves when I was younger. I have to admit, I'm not a Bruce Willis fan, so I have not seen any of the Die Hard movies. I'm glad, however, Rickman finished filming the new Alice In Wonderland movie, but how strange will it be when they release it? Knowing his voice has been led to the Blue Caterpillar will be just as sadly awkward as receiving Blackstar in the mail yesterday (I'm super glad I pre-ordered.. Amazon is "temporarily out of stock" on all Bowie albums, and the prices have skyrocketed). I'll probably be renting that movie once it goes to DVD. 

Okay... so I'm re-reading what I've written so far, and I'm officially starting to ramble. Thanks for the +1 on the other posts (B) and I'll check in with this place again soon..

Take care of yourselves!!


Tuesday, January 12, 2016

"At the center of it all..."

... at the center of it all...

Second day in a row, and I've got another post. I haven't done repeat (thought induced) postings in a while. It's a good thing... no?

The music world is still clinging to the shrouded loss of an icon, and the fans seem to be in a clouded daze as well. I was just on TW, checking the threads. Seems like a couple people logged back in to say their farewells to the artist we all have come to enjoy and love. The users are crawling back in, and the answers are coming out the same - "I can't believe I remembered my credentials"..."It takes something this big"... Others are still in shock.

Let's face it - David Robert Jones has been talking about his death for nearly fifty years. Someone brought a similar thought up on the fan site, and coincidentally, I happened to have thought about it this morning, on my way to work, whilst listening to . ..A mere hours before logging back into anything on the interwebz.

If you trace back to some of the earlier work, out takes, in takes, covers, whatever is publicized... there have been little glimpses of where the music was headed and how it had shown it's gnarly face.

Just off the top of my head, for example, there's one song is the type of "rare" (so they say) / "never officially released on an album"(so they say) songs (Tired Of My Life) that transitioned itself into another completely separate song (It's No Game). We're talking somewhere in the late 1960s or 1970s for the first song, and 1980 for the latter (because it's on the Scary Monsters album.. same record that asked if we "remember a guy, in such an early song"  by the name of Major Tom [Ashes to Ashes]). A cover would be 1972's "My Death", a loosely translated Jacques Brel song.

Even the personas aren't exempt from death. Ziggy Stardust - the first incarnation of a new life (post hippy Dave of 1960), was "killed" off at the Hammersmith Odeon in 1973. The crowd went nuts, as that was the "last show" the alien and his Spiders From Mars would "ever do". It brought a doppelganger of sorts - Aladdin Sane. To which it wasn't long before the aristocratic Thin White Duke arrived hailing Nazi Germany (allegedly) and Nietzscheisms. A small string of other alter egos and more questions about life and death in the subconscious context, everyone just merrily sang along with the man who had warned his listeners about the last of the corpses rotting in the thoroughfare (Future Legend) and that Everyone Says 'Hi', he knew that one day, we all could be "Heroes".

Listening to Blackstar today, even as I write this post, I have way too many questions that will never be answered. I think some of the queries are best left to the imagination, and some should be asked. But knowing the right kind of person, is hard, as no one has the right response. It's like the constant "why" from a child to its parents. The parents don't have a clue what to tell the tot on occasion; instead, they get upset at the probing and the cherub quite possibly acquaints vocalizing thoughts as something you just don't do. Are my internal ramblings on that level? I would hope not. Should anyone's? Again, I would hope not.

Although my first thought of the album, with headphones in, is you can really hear something wrong with db. As much as "it pains me" to give a harsh criticism so early in the game, but there are sections in the beginning and end of a couple of the songs, where you can hear a wheezy breathing... something that no other song I've heard, has. A true sign Mr. B may have been ill. No one listened for his rasps and edited it out. Paul's not dead, he's just breathing. I do have to ask, however, why is Gail Ann Dorsey and the rest of the typical Scooby Gang not on this album (I'm looking at you, Earl Slick, as well)? The digital download of the album has the booklet attached, and I was reading (scanning) it for the lyrics and some pictures, and the last couple pages have the musicians listed. Not one name I knew, besides Bowie and Visconti (producer). It's a little let down, that the gang we all came to recognize from the past 35 years, wasn't given a thought to come back and play. Was this intentional? I always found it funny when Gail Ann (bassist) warbled along with Bowie. It was cute! Where was Sterling Campbell on drums, (the aforementioned) Earl Slick on guitar, "Spooky Ghost" Gerry Leonard on guitar, and Mike Garson on keyboard? Were they not as relevant for this album?

Too many questions, and unfortunately company just walked in.

More to come...


Where the fuck did Monday go?

Monday, January 11, 2016

I heard the news today, oh boy...

It is with great sadness that I am getting on the "RIP" wagon, and reporting that David Bowie has passed away Sunday, January 10, 2015, at the (somewhat young) age of 69.

No, it is not a hoax, as a lot of conspiracy theorists are saying, due to the fact Blackstar () has dropped just a mere three days ago. It's not a publicity stunt, as sometimes, we have to think better of ourselves and whom we are speaking about. I think the last "stunt" that was pulled, was when Ziggy Stardust told a crowd that "this is the last time we'll ever perform". Theoretically, it was the last time Ziggy performed, as Mr. Bowie went on to create several new personas.

There are no words to sum up the awe and inspiration that the original "Davy Jones" has brought upon me and the rest of the world. Like a lot of people, I'm just gutted. I sit here and want to articulate something of importance on this blog, but I can't seem to get the words out.

I went to peruse one of the original social networks I signed up for "all those years ago" (and of all things, a perverted sounding site called Teenage Wildlife.. it's a db fan page). Because it's been so long since it was updated, one can not register a username anymore. I remember my email for the place (but the mailbox links are broken), my original screen name and now the  new one. Like a lot of users logging in to it today, they barely remembered their credentials because the site has become one of those foreclosure houses you see - people acknowledge its existence, but no one wants to buy it. The original owner of TW (Evan Torrie), bless his heart, kept the place running for many years. Plenty of moderators were running around "in the day" ("housekeepers" if you will), and due to an illness taking much of Mr. Torrie's time, the place got let go. So users were fed to the wolves, in some cases. But a lot of the main members came back today, writing down their thoughts on the boards, I remember from when I joined - they were already the popular kids when I started. We all got to know each other and got to joking around.

It's a bad day when everyone goes back to the place that originally drew them in, what seems like forever ago. People change in the meantime... life happens, as it has proven these last 24 hours.

I really wish there was more to say, but where we are already 11 days into the new year, and this is my first post. I don't want to further jinx or say anything. I must also report that Lemmy from Motorhead has also passed within the week (old news), but can not comment on his death, as I wasn't a Motorhead fan; I only know of his name and mustache.

Fare well... pray for peace and be good to yourselves... see you in the next session.


See also:
Google keyword search

BBC Entertainment write up