Romney Says…

from TPM:

Republican Mitt Romney said Wednesday that if elected president he and his wife will not embarrass the nation by their conduct in the White House as happened in “the Clinton years.”

He went on to say that he was going to embarrass the country in a more “the last seven psychotic years of impotent old men with access to military force” style. Kind of a “fundamentalist with a secret agenda” meets “tool of corporate power thingy” he said, continuing “a sort of… you know… a nouvelle Inquisition vibe, only with talking salamanders and magic underwear as a bonus.”

“It’s going to be a whole new FLAVOR of embarrassment… that is, if anyone has any shame left to burn after Mr. Bush leaves office.” He concluded his remarks by blowing a small silver dog whistle that only angry white people can hear, and then barked “Thanks, folks…. see you at the polls!”

Word for the day: ULTRACREPIDARIAN

“Somebody who gives opinions on matters beyond his knowledge.”

Defined here.

I discovered the word while rereading my favorite Christmas story ever at ScaryDuck’s old site.

I glazed over with a dreamy smile on my face, but by the time the three of us were naked, the moment had passed.

Instead, I bowked rich brown, crispy vomit all over their legs, which rather put a dampener on the whole occasion, and the resulting screams made me fear for my life. “Dear Fiesta… ah forget it.”

In an attempt to sleep it off an a nice, quiet office, I managed to mark my card further by bowking rich, brown vomit over the office manager’s Territorial Army uniform, which featured far too many leather straps to be strictly official, just hours before she was due at the annual Christmas service. To make things even worse, this occured literally seconds before she arrived with some strapping chap on her arm saying “We can do it on my desk, nobody will find ou…”.

Ah, the Holidays!

step one: confirm the problem before finding a solution

I knew that when I got to Europe, I was going to need cymbals. Backline companies over there have decided that cymbals are a bad bet, since they’re 1. the part of a drumset most likely to break, and 2. outrageously expensive in the UK. The cymbals I use for Music Hates You are massive, heaaaavy manhole cover-like cymbals. The Low Lows need brighter, lighter, more responsive cymbals that will make a sound when hit by with brushes.

I couldn’t afford to buy a whole other set of cymbals for just one tour, so I set about the process of borrowing cymbals. Funny thing, people weren’t all that keen on loaning me their bronze. Maybe it’s because they’ve seen my cymbal-smashing playing with Music Hates You…. BUT I assure you, The Low Lows are a whole different approach to playing drums.

Still, no offers.

Kim at Monotreme contacted me in the middle of all of this running around and asked if I might looking into buying a set of cymbals for the label while I am still in the States, since, as I mentioned, cymbals are outrageously expensive in the UK. That way, Monotreme will have cymbals for other bands to use when they come over from the US.

I checked Guitar Center’s prices and looked into some other options, but the best, by far, was the deal we could get from this guy:

Nick Amoroso.

Nick supplies backline kits to a lot of drummers in LA, and has a sterling reputation. He also has a private email list he sends out with a bunch of used gear on it which is for sale at very, very good prices. A friend forwarded it to me, I picked out what seemed like the PERFECT set of cymbals for The Low Lows, and then sent all of that info to Kim at Monotreme. She paid Nick and, since time was short, I had him ship everything to my folks’ house in DC.

The box arrived 24 hours later. I love this guy.

My plan was to fashion some sort of duct tape handle and carry the box of cymbals onto the plane, since I am allowed one laptop case and one carryon.

However, when I got in last night and saw the cymbal box that Nick sent, I realized that, with packing materials, it was way, way too big to carry on. I knew that the largest cymbal would be 20″ across, but packing materials and the box added several inches to its width. There was no way I was going to be able to carry it on. I didn’t even open the box to look at the cymbals, I was so tired and concerned… I fell asleep mulling over the issue.

Then, probably because of the cumulative fatigue of yesterday’s five hour flight delay and being exhausted by my general anxiety at flying, I slept deeply and much later than I meant to this morning. I woke up in a panic, realizing that I only had a few hours to go and grab a cymbal bag so I could carry the cymbals on.

I called the nearest music store that I could find in the Yellow Pages, and they said that they had a cymbal bag. We drove over there in the horrible DC traffic which was typically stop and go and crappy. Since we had several things to do today, like pick up our race packets for the marathon tomorrow, the time wasted in traffic was pretty stressful. I mean, the clock was ticking on all the shit that we had to do today…

So, we get to the music store… and… no cymbal bag. It was some a suburban band instrument store and they didn’t know that they didn’t have it until we got there. Typical sort of “Give an answer on the phone, then check to see if the answer was correct later” scenario.

So, they give us terrible TERRIBLE and vague directions to Guitar Center. It takes us an hour to get there in traffic. More stop and go, more crappy. We get there, and I spend precious dollars that I was going to spend in the UK (where EVERYTHING is expensive), and I grab a cymbal bag.

It was nice enough. Kind of cheap, but something that will work. Then we spend an hour hacking our way back across town to my folks’ place, where I open the box full of cymbals for the first time…. and… Nick, saint that he is, has shipped the cymbals with a really nice Zildjian cymbal bag. Honestly, the nicest one I have ever seen.

Is this whole trip going to be like this?

More IM Funnies

B: went to see the bull riding last weekend. man that was crazy
Patrick: what was he riding?
B: some dudes pelvis
Patrick: ouch
Patrick: there’s your X Game, brother
B: 3-4 people were seriiously hurt
Patrick: PBR (Pro Bull Riding) is a lot more extreme than jumping out of an airplane strapped to a snowboard
B: one guy was still being worked on by the medics while everyone was leaving
B: its nuts.
Patrick: ouch
Patrick: they were working on his nuts?
B: I dunno what those guys do after they are too damaged to walk anymore
Patrick: sit around and talk about it, I’d imagine
B: or go to work for microsoft
Patrick: now THAT’S not only funny… but would make an interesting short film
B: heh
Patrick: especially if their new thrill was trying to keep an out-of-the-box Exchange server on the internet eight seconds without getting hacked
B: yee haw
Patrick: Hyaaah!
Patrick: “Oh, wow, Tug… that one came down hard, and right out of the chute, too. That’s one serious root kit….”
Patrick: “Well, Roy, thank god for the clowns in Microsoft Server Support… here they come now…”

busy busy busy

Doing a bunch of stuff to prepare for the release of the Music Hates You record in a couple of weeks. In the meantime, my dad sent me this excellent email:

The USS Constitution (Old Ironsides) as a combat vessel carried 48,600 gallons of fresh water for her crew of 475 officers and men. This was sufficient to last six months of sustained operations at sea. She carried no evaporators.

However, let it be noted that according to her log, “On July 27, 1798, the USS Constitution sailed from Boston with a full complement of 475 officers and men, 48,600 gallons of fresh water, 7,400 cannon shot, 11,600 pounds of black powder and 79,400 gallons of rum.”

Her mission: “To destroy and harass English shipping.” Making Jamaica on 6 October, she took on 826 pounds of flour and 68,300 gallons of rum.

Then she headed for the Azores, arriving there 12 November. She provisioned with 550 pounds of beef and 64,300 gallons of Portuguese wine.

On 18 November, she set sail for England. In the ensuing days she defeated five British men-of-war and captured and scuttled 12 English merchantmen, salvaging only the rum aboard each.

By 26 January, her powder and shot were exhausted. Nevertheless, although unarmed she made a night raid up the Firth of Clyde in Scotland. Her landing party captured a whisky distillery and transferred 40,000 gallons of single malt Scotch aboard by dawn.

Then she headed home.

The USS Constitution arrived in Boston on 20 February, 1799, with no cannon shot, no food, no powder, no rum, no wine, no whisky and 38,600 gallons of stagnant water.


joke from the col.

My dad sent me this:

A crusty old Sergeant Major found himself at a gala event, hosted
by a local liberal arts college. There was no shortage of extremely
young, idealistic ladies in attendance, one of whom approached the
Sergeant Major for conversation.

She said, “Excuse me, Sergeant Major, but you seem to be a very
serious man. Is something bothering you?”

“Negative, ma’am,” the Sergeant Major said, “Just serious by nature.”

“The young lady looked at his awards and decorations and said, “It
looks like you have seen a lot of action.”

The Sergeant Major’s short reply was, “Yes, ma’am, a lot of action.”

The young lady, tiring of trying to start up a conversation, said,
“You know, you should lighten up a little. Relax and enjoy yourself.”

The Sergeant Major just stared at her in his serious manner. Finally
the young lady said, “You know, I hope you don’t take this the wrong
way, but when is the last time you had sex?”

The Sergeant Major looked at her and replied,

She said, “Well, there you are. You really need to chill out and quit
taking everything so seriously! I mean, no sex since 1955! She took
his hand and led him to a private room where she proceeded to “relax” him
several times. Afterwards, and panting for breath, she leaned against his bare chest and said, “Wow, you sure didn’t forget much since 1955!”

The Sergeant Major, glancing at his watch, said in his matter-of-factvoice, “I hope not, it’s only 2130 now.”