Wednesday, February 18, 2009

First Loaves

My first pass through the draft is more of a quick edit than a serious second draft. I've added some words. I deleted a long section that I could tell, instantly, didn't work. In moment of doubt, I just think of John Fante. I'm using his ghost as my spiritual guide through the process. I haven't read him much lately, but he was one of the main and vital inspirations. Plus, he wrote from doubt, it seems to me, and kept going.

The Dufflebag had a second half-day in a row. He's up in his room now, do doubt praying for snow. I'm not praying for the storm to pass. Pleading? The children need math! Hear me, oh gods of snow and sleet.

My cd ripping is closer to complete. Right now I'm going through the Ray Charles boxed set. And then, it's on to the Tom Waits discs that Mikey didn't have prepped already: Black Rider (a personal favorite), Big Time, the excellent recent discs (Alice) and the not-so-excellent (Real Gone).


Aside from my first draft, today marks the first time I've baked a loaf of bread in the house. I've been meaning to do this for months, and see breadbaking as a productive hobby.

I went for a simple white bread, made out of unbleached flour. Going against my normal way of proceding, I'm going to try to remake the same recipe over and over, with minor modifications, until I feel as though I've mastered it. Then, I'll move on to nutbreads, oatmeal, wheat breads, cranberry breads. Banana. Jalapeno. Spiced. Once I feel have some depth of understanding and my technique has been honed, then I'll start thinking of sourdoughs and more complicated fare.


Listening to the ipod on shuffle. I've come to hate the term "roided up" since it's applied to anything of any size whatsoever. But it certainly feels almost excessively overflowing now. Even on shuffle, the hits far outweigh the misses. I only had to jump up and hit skip once (it was a Ween song), and was tempted to replay one half-forgotten song again to savor it (Warren Zevon's "Mutineer.")

My eyes are being opened to the minor works of David Bowie. And I'm not convinced more than ever that if Rancid didn't have such a stupid name they'd be the Billy Joel of the mohawk set. That's a compliment. Really.


  1. And by what name would you call a group with singing voices that heinous that could give them more musical credibility? If that sentence read something like "if Rancid didn't have such horrible vocalist..." it would have made more sense to me, but I think for what they were shooting for, it fits pretty well.

    By the way did I give you the Transplants? That's pretty much Rancid's attempt at hip-hop. And in my opinion it works remarkably well. OMG! Someone cut a corner off my punkrawk chip! 3 more and I'll have to earn it all over again!

  2. Really? I like the voices. They sound like Dion next to some of my early punk rock heroes.

    It seems like they transcend their own limits in the last few records. There's something a little literary about them -- noirish and hardboiled international intrigue. It's evocative and not merely rotting.

    Hip-hop is something I only appreciate in the abstract. Even the good stuff. I've tried and consider it a more a problem with me than with the music.

    And it's damn good workout music to boot.

  3. Blogger botched my last post. The last two paragraphs should be switched. It is Rancid that is good workout music.

    Although I did lift weights while listening to the Wu Tang Clan back in the day.

  4. which bowie works do you consider minor?

  5. Same question as above poster... I was looking through what I thought was the Bowie discography on my computer and most early albums have 10 or more songs (except station to station)

    For Rancid I'm missing 98's Life Won't Wait and 00's Self Titled.

    If I gave you Transplants you should def take a listen... instead of hip hop, think of it as Tim from Rancid talking over guitar, bass, and drums. And it rhymes whenever his rasp doesn't trail off into nothingness...

    On another part of the spectrum... Alkaline Trio. I know I gave you them and I wanted you to take a listen. There first 3 albums are the best (not counting the self titled which was a collection of b-sides... still good but not polished) but you should start with 01's From Here to Infirmary.

    As for the subject of hip hop, lets differentiate between RAP and hip hop. Hip hop is a culture, with at least 5 elements (MC'ing, DJ'ing, BBoying, Graffiti, and Knowledge). Real hip hop music keeps the elements in mind and tends to be deeper and conscious or at least fun.

    The rest of the stuff is mostly crap. Not that it doesn't have its uses, but most of those involve around a culture of debasement and abuse rather than one of unity and understanding and positivity.

    "And if ya don't know, now ya know..."
    "word to ya motha"