Thursday, February 24, 2005

From the desk of Ed Kelly...

ZapRowsdower8: have you ever wanted to sleep with a blonde hair blue eyed woman just so you can find out what recessive genes you have?
GringoStarrRock: no but that is brilliant
ZapRowsdower8: i was thinking about that today during school
GringoStarrRock: it is interesting
ZapRowsdower8: i would have to have at least 4 kids with her though
GringoStarrRock: yeah, just to make the punnet square
ZapRowsdower8: so maybe rape would be a better choice
GringoStarrRock: why?
ZapRowsdower8: i'll wear a ski mask, and check up with the victim 9 months later
ZapRowsdower8: I dont want to take care of 4 kids
GringoStarrRock: and then do it 4 times?
ZapRowsdower8: you know it
GringoStarrRock: chances are she'll either - a) abort a few of them or b) kill herself for being raped so many times
ZapRowsdower8: thats a risk I am willing to tkae

Fantasy Baseball

I am a huge baseball fan, for those who don't know. For the last 5 years i have done a Yahoo! free league, and this year will be no different (i'm actually doing 2) along with a bigboy pay league (through Baseball Manager).

Anyway, my one Yahoo! league, the Ben Franklin league, still has spots open. So rant friends, if you're interested, shoot me an email and we will get you signed up.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

R.I.P. The Jayhawks/Local Racism

So apparently the Jayhawks have broken up. This makes me sad. Rainy Day Music, their swan song, is a fantastic record, and i had just started to dig through their back-catalog to discover some more. This upsets me.

What doesn't upset me is that Blink-182 has gone on "indefinite hiatus," which pretty much means that they broke up, but their label doesn't want to admit it. This is a very good thing. Not that i dislike the members as individuals (in fact, i quite liked Travis Barker's work with the Aquabats, and to some degree, with the Transplants, and i have found Mark Hoppas to be surprisingly well spoken when seen him interviewed for Gigantic, the They Might Be Giants documentary, and hey, that other guy whose name is escaping me campaigned for Kerry - so even though i may not love their music, they seem like good guys), but their music was getting to a point that i really couldn't hear them and like it at all. There was a time when i really dug their stuff, back in my pop/punk days, and their last album just seemed like 3 guys who were bored trying to bring their love for The Cure into a Buzzcocks rip-off band, and that just wasn't going to work.

And apparently one of the guys from Korn is a born again Christian and quit the band.

This has been a volitile day for music.

PS. I'm on facebook now. It's sort of lame but hey, it got me in touch with some old friends, so thats cool.

-------------------------------------------------------------------
Actual sentences spoken to me while sitting at the bar tonight @ Timbers when i was eating dinner:

"I hope this black bastard (Barry Bonds) has a huge fucking asterisk next to his records"
"Back in my day there were real ball players, like the polack!"
"I says to him, 'your car only has two things going for it: its not a Kraut car, and its not a Jap car' - and he gives me the sign of the cross!"

Ah, nothing like a little local racism to boil my blood.

Monday, February 21, 2005

It was 19 years ago today...

Happy 19th Birthday to my brother, Mark. Here is a creepy picture from his myspace:




Here is one of my favorite Mark stories:

Once he hit me in the throat with a whifflebat when i was taking a nap. So i threw him down a flight of stairs. I was maybe 12.

Happy Birthday!

Thursday, February 17, 2005

__________ of the Week

Song of the Week - "The Man Who Loved Beer" - Lambchop
URL of the Week - www.nymets.com - i've got spring (training) fever!
Quote of the Week - Ed Kelly, "ZapRowsdower8 (11:04:48 AM): i wish their was an emoticon powerful enough to display my disgust"
Away Message of the Week - Kenny having something about Joe Fabian in it
TV Event of the Week - Me knowing like 3/4 of the questions on the Jeopardy ULTIMATE tournament of champions yesterday
Meal of the Week - Blue Moon Cafe w/ Erin
Letdown of the Week - No one commenting on that awesome picture ('cept Ed who represents)
Beatles Song of the Week - "Think For Yourself" (2 Harrison songs in a row)

Monday, February 14, 2005

Best Picture Ever



Tuesday, February 08, 2005

The Catholic Larry David

So today i had an experience that i can only qualify as Larry David-esque. For those who are not familiar, this is Larry David:


Mr. David is the star of HBO's Curb Your Enthusiasm, and has a penchant for getting himself into totally uncomfortable situations.

So, let me first explain what got me here.

About 5 months ago, i purchased a second cell phone charger so that i could leave a charger at my parents' house in Cresskill and/or at my office and not have to worry about bringing my sole charger everywhere with me. I went to a store in my lovely town of Oakland called "Phones 4 U" which is apparently an authorized Verizon dealer (or so their 3 huge signs would have you believe).

Well, the first charger i bought there stopped working within a month. It was the type where you had to pull the prongs from their home on an adapter and then stick them in the wall (this all sounds vaguely sexual). Anyway, not only did this charger turn the phone off whenever it was unplugged, but it was unplugged often, since the prongs did not stay extended at all. So unless it was plugged into a power strip/surge protector, it could not stay plugged in. You put it in the wall, it falls out, it turns the phone off. Very frustrating.

Anyway, so i go back to the place two weeks ago to buy a new charger. I specifically asked for a kind where the prongs are always "out" and told them how the last kind didn't work. The clerk was very sympathetic and gave me $5 off the price. However, i did not get a receipt and for the second time buying at this "authorized Verizon dealer" i did not have a Verizon product. In fact, neither charger had a brand name i have ever heard before.

So i use this charger for 3 days or so, and then take off for a ski trip at Gore Mountain in NY State. I was staying in Glens Falls, which is about 40 minutes from Gore. Friday night i get up there, plug my phone in and go about my merry way. The phone rings (it was Erin) and as i pick it up, i get a slight electric shock, and it blows out the charger. Now, i'm talking the kind of shock that you get pulling a sweater off your head. This was not a "you could see it in the dark" kind of shock.

So, today i bring the charger and its box into Phones 4 U to get my money back. I've decided that anything they sell me will be shite, so i'll just ask for my money back. To me, this is not ridiculous. If i sold you two CDs, both of which broke after the 3rd listen, i would have to refund your money.

Before i get to the confrontation, this needs to be made clear: The proprieter and all the employees are Indian, and wear the traditional turbans. They always are quite shady/suspicious when i come in. So, i walk in and the dude is glaring at me something fierce. He says "can i help you?" and i explain the sitch. Eventually he says "well you must have done something wrong or plugged it in to the wrong kind of socket."

Now, what i meant to say was "No, i didn't leave the country, and i know how to use an outlet, i do it all the time." Somehow that came out as "I'm an American citizen, i know how to use an outlet." Now, this was caused by a combination of me being borderline retarded, nervousness and the fact that this guy was already trying to imply that i was a biggot by the way he was talking to me. For instance, when i said "You sold me shotty merchandise, TWICE" he said "well i don't make it in the back you know, i don't have my whole family in the back making electronics" or something like that, as if implying thats what i thought.

So, needless to say, this guy FLIPS out. "So you are saying that because i am Indian i do not know how to use a simple socket?" Now his two buddies (one in turban, one sans) come out from the back. So there are three large Indian men staring me down like i called them some sort of slur. I immediately started apologizing, as i really did not mean it that way. What i meant was that as a functioning member of society, i know how to, and use, sockets all the live long day.

Well this sent them on a shitstorm for at least 2 minutes about how i'm racist. Anyone who knows me (i would hope) knows that i am not racist at all. I try and explain to him what i meant, but it was clearly too late for that. So i keep telling him that i did NOT mean it that way, and whatnot, and i think he starts to believe me, but is still giving me shit. So he eventually says "i'm not an American citizen, but i'm not some kid who thinks he knows everything."

Nothing bothers me more than being called a kid in a condescending way by people who are well older than i. Yeah, i might look young, but fuck you - i spent $35 in your store for two products whose entire worth did not last me 30 days when both should have lasted at least 6 months. So i say "I am not 'some kid,' i own my own business, i work a full time job AND i'm a tax paying citizen." Snap, i did it again.

I was saying that i am not a child, and once again i have offended this guy's country of origin totally unknowingly. However, this time he did not either notice, care, or misunderstand what i said. Well, at least he didn't let on that he hated me even more. Eventually, i got my phone back (which he was holding the whole time, as he had to check my charger to make sure i wasn't full of shit) and walked out.

I'm still going to report the store to Verizon and the Better Business Bureau, because shit merchandise is shit merchandise. What i feel terrible about though is how this guy is going to go home to his wife and kids and talk about this cracker who called him a towel head, or imply something that i meant to insult this guy's immigrant status, which couldn't be further from the truth. I really wanted to say "i have Indian friends!" but i felt that it was a) too cliche, and b) i'm not really GOOD friends with any Indian people, and he would somehow know this ("you haven't hung out with Roy Joseph in over a year!").

Anyway, tune in tomorrow as i accidentally offend more people.

Sunday, February 06, 2005

The Worst Gumball of All Time

so today i was going to the bank, and on my way out, i spotted out of the corner of my eye a gumball machine in the local blockbuster video. This should have been my frist clue to stay away, but who am i to listen to reason?

i go inside, place my quarter in the slot as the clerk is staring at me literally slack jawed - his mouth was wide open as if no one has ever bought a gumball from there. after this experience, i now know why.

so, the ball starts its descent - sour apple, yes! of all the flavors in this machine, i was hoping for either a sour apple or a blue one (blueberry? blue raspberry? do i care?). so, i take the ball out of the metal dealy and place it in my mouth.

briefly i thought "man it would suck to swallow one of these." luckily that tragedy didn't befall me, but one surely did.

so i bit into this gumball, and it exploded into roughly a dozen SHARP pieces. enough for me to say "ow!" and spit them into my hand. this gumball was apparently 100% hollow, and therefore cracked like a ceramic golfball in my mouth.

(by the by, i have never bitten a ceramic golfball, i am just assuming)

so, i place all the pieces, one by one back in my mouth and mash them into a workable piece of gum. and for about 10 seconds it was quite flavorful. then it died. it became work to chew this flavorless chunk of goo, so i spit it out.

worst two bits i ever spent.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

'05

Things I am looking forward to in 2005, now that we are a month in:

-Traveling more. Ed and i were talking tonight about taking a long weekend to San Fran/Oakland to take in some baseball/music during the summer, and that is getting me excited to do some more traveling this year. Even if its just getting up to more of New England, or taking the long rumored Fury-Us road trip.

-Less TV commercials featuring George W. Bush. Sure, he's still the prez and that sucks, but at least we get 100% less "I am George W. Bush and i approve this message."

-Writing more music. This year i've actually been good so far with capturing small little ideas on tape and sorting them out later and building them into songs. Usually i would force myself to finish things as soon as i started them, but thats just stupid. This way the ideas grow, breathe and have time to adapt before i force them into a 3 or 5 minute structure. I hope to write more music in '05 than in this entire decade combined (which really isn't that hard considering my most productive year {'04} only had like 7 or 8 keepable songs, and 6 of those were written w/ Jeff for our dormant band.

-Less playing Tetris on my cell phone. Yes, i love it, but i play it too much. Seriously - some days i'll lie in bed for another 15 minutes after waking up playing a game on a telephone. It is time i get a life and at least invest in an old school Gameboy.

-Seeing more interesting films. Netflix is my boo, and because of it i have been able to view so many great movies that i just would not have had the means to see a few years ago. I hope to get more and more into foreign and independent film, as well as catch up on all the American classics i've missed. Plus the new films that tickle my fancy (Batman Begins, Everything is Illuminated, Sin City, etc).

-An end to the constant shitting on of the Star Wars legacy by George Lucas. Hopefully with this new film, he can retire happy and i can enjoy the old trilogy without having to have any more pointless new parts put in.

-Hearing more music. Every month i find new albums, artists, songs, and genres that i enjoy, and that is fantastic. I wish everyone shared my insatiable thirst for new music, but alas, i am mostly alone in my consumption of indie rock/bossa nova/post-bop/tropicalia/pop/psychedelia/classical and just plain rock music. I am specifically looking forward to new albums from Frank Black, Stephen Malkmus, Superwolf, the Breeders, the New Pornographers, Robert Pollard, Sufjan Stevens (hopefully), Spoon, Queens of the Stone Age and hopefully a return to their 90s form for Weezer.

-Learning to bake more desserts. Because really who doesn't love desserts? Ditto for getting a microbrewing kit.

-More time with friends. This is a complicated one. Many of my good friends i don't get to see as much because i have returned full time to the Garden State. However, i still talk to many of them frequently, and 2 or 3 daily. Plus i have spent more time with some of my NJ crew more in the last 7 months than probably the last 4 years, so that is cool. I want to make an effort to have more meaningful hang outs, whatever that means. Not so much just sitting on my couch watching reality tv, but actually doing things. Lately, i've been very into board games, and that always makes for good hangs.

-Distancing myself more from crazies. These crazies in no way are limited to, but include: Bill Donahue and the Catholic League, Ryan Schwoeble, the entire Comm. Dep't of DU (minus Roy Joseph), anyone (minus Ken Beck) who goes to 44 East Madison in Cresskill, people who swear by everything Pitchfork says, people who don't distrust the government, people who actually liked Episodes I and II more than the original Star Wars trilogy, people who like Wings more than the Beatles ('cept A.C. Newman), people who claim to be part of a "scene," people who don't even attempt to be creative, and smelly people.

-Playing more banjo. Pretty self explanatory.

More feedback please!