Saturday, January 31, 2009


(Thanks for the link, Mathew!)

football fantasies..

(Thanks for the link, Mathew!)

Mrs. Passed Away

I'd note the final paragraph where our military thinks everyone is named John Doe. I guess they are an "Army of One"...

Happy Birthday John (rotten) Lydon!

The Spirit of '77....

Friday, January 30, 2009

The Buckinghams perform Mercy Mercy Mercy

Great song and sound. The Buckinghams almost made it to the big time. Summer of '67, wonderful.....

Ground Zero....

my name is Ivan Ernest Kareem

This sounds like crackpot research to me....

Thanks Goodness!

I've always thought that starvation diets merely made it seem like you'd lived longer...

I feel better already

En Garde!

the chocolate covered pigeon

in that universe, I don't have a beard

Ha! These guys don't have anything on the average Diplomacy player....

the cutting edge of batteries

most dangerous cities

I'm proud to see D.C., Baltimore and lil' ol' Ocean City ranked right up there. If only they'd added the fantasy listing for people that you want to kill, I know that the Bailey's Crossroads and Culmore areas would be far and away the #1 spot in the whole Universe. If there's a driver there capable of figuring out how to get beyond second gear, I've not found them yet.

interview with Abrams on the new Star Trek film

Happy Birthday Steve Marriott

One of the great rock vocalists.

Happy Birthday Marty Balin!

One of my faves.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Stevie & Lindsey perform Landslide

It's a dark and frozen night here at the Manor, and you gaze out at the waste and realize that "I'm getting older too". See ya tomorrow...

38 Special performs If I'd BeenThe One

I've always enjoyed these guys, sort of a guilty pleasure for me.

The Equals perform Baby Come Back

Fun song. That's Eddy "Electric Avenue" Grant singing...

Zombie Attack In Austin!

(Thanks for the link, Ed!)

Happy Birthday to The Muppet Show!

Premiered on this date in 1976. Great stuff!


The Raven was first published on this date in 1845...

Happy Birthday W. C. Fields!

An American original. Essential.

Happy Birthday Thomas Paine!

One of the Essential men of the Revolution.

Happy Birthday "Lighthorse" Henry Lee!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

the bakery of the damned

cyber war?

Tee Hee!

Great Art Simpsonized

The Carbuncle Awards

The Defense Rests...

Happy Birthday Sarah McLachlan

Happy National Kazoo Day!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


Fear & Loathing in the Snow

Well, despite a desperate hope, our luck ran out and we got snow today. Any reader of this blog during past Winters knows what that means for the DC area - we are talking Donner Party. To be fair, today's weather is indeed pretty bad. So far, it's not particularly a thick accumulation, but it is VERY icy. I hit several patches on my commute home where I'd clearly lost control, slow and steady driving helped, as did my profanity-laden shouting - the sound waves I created buffeted and cushioned the car from the curb and other vehicles. I call it the power of negative obscenity.
I am now safely ensconced at home, and dreading shoveling out the iceberg that has taken over my driveway.
My attitude was not always like this. I am reminded that some of the most fun I ever had as a kid was in snow. Sledding was a near obsession in the old neighborhood. My street (Crestwood Drive) was on a hill angling down at about 20 degrees. Cutting into it was another road (Edge Hill), angling down at about 25-45 degrees. Given an inch of ice, you had sledding heaven. And I use the word heaven on purpose - forget about foxholes, there were no atheists when it came to us kids praying for a snow day from school. All eyes went skyward pleading with the almighty that the big test could be delayed a day or two and that we could get down to the serious business of sledding. I learned of the futility of prayer from those days. If there'd been any divine response we'd of been glaciated from the day after Thanksgiving until St. Patrick's Day. The Alexandria Ice Age would have been one for the record books. Instead, we'd have to take our chances with earthly meteorology. And you did not have the current wussiness and liability-conscious society that you do now. Schools did not close unless it was a serious snow storm, (and that decision was based upon whether the buses would run - we didn't have school buses, the public transportation system was used, if they wanted to make a buck and keep running, then we went to school). Otherwise we'd have to claw out way to classes as best we could. Paths were carved through the wilderness, and we trudged into white hell in search of an education. Some, the weak, wouldn't make it and fall by the wayside. We'd strip the bodies of coats or anything else that might aid us in keeping warm. I still have nightmares, for sometimes the freshly fallen would be sliced open and we'd warm our hands within the still-warm body, trying to get some feeling back into our fingers. You develop a certain emotional callous that gets you through, no matter how horrible the times are. Of course, some of the bodies I came upon were missing organs. I tried not to think of the hunger that must have driven some of my fellow pilgrims. I know that what I've described sounds horrible, especially for a grade schooler to have gone through, but it had it's value, it prepared me perfectly for life at T. C. Williams High School. You want real horror - ask me about my freshman year...
At any rate, we were talking about sledding. One has to remember that we considered it a contact sport back in the old neighborhood. One would try to force others off the road. This was done by a variety of means. Ramming and sideswiping were popular. The coolest, and most dangerous, method was to reach out and grab the back rail. It was tricky, and only could be done on some sleds. Fortunately, one of those was the most popular - the Flexible Flyer. The rails of the Flyer would run along the entire length of the body board, and then would curve up and under that board. This would create a handle-like extension just behind the body board. Like an old WWI flying ace, you'd try to maneuver yourself directly behind and slightly to the left (if you were right handed) of your victim, matching their speed exactly. When in position, you'd reach out with your right hand, grab the "handle" and push it violently to the left. This would cause the rear of the sled to fish-tail out to the left at high speed, almost certainly causing it to roll over. A lucky or particularly accomplished sledder might even get to run over the rider as he flipped off the catapulting sled. This is what we called fun.
Of course, the maneuver itself had certain dangers. A short sled meant that the rider's legs stretched over and past the rear of it, putting your face or hand in range of a violent kick if they knew you were there. And merely reaching for the rail of a speeding sled meant the possibility of getting caught in it, ripping off your hand, or getting run over and losing several fingers. The sled runs were always well marked with grim markers of failed attacks. One learned precision during those Winters.
Upon entering high school, my old friend Edmund and I decided to make the ultimate sled. It was based on the chopper motorcycle design, (I always thought those looked so cool). We took the front steering mechanism of his sled and attached it to to the front of mine, extended out an extra foot by a true 2x4 board, and secured by steel bolts whose quality and size rarely used outside of the hull of battleships. We then took the body board and lifted the front onto a block of wood above the frame, making it lean back at about a 15 degree angle. There was no "rail handle" in the back. I had a Yankee Clipper, and they knew better than to put such nonsense on their sleds. The rails were made of solid iron, and weighed a ton. They were painted red, (no doubt to hide the blood stains of anyone we ran over - Yankee Clippers rocked!). We sharpened and waxed them until they were like twin Excaliburs of icy doom. I gotta tell you - the thing looked beautiful, a sort of proto-steam punk Ben Hur/Easy Rider sledding nightmare. The coolest looking sled ever made. Ever.
To be honest, there was one fatal flaw in our design. The steering mechanism was way out front, and without any weight on it. Steering ability ran from poor to nightmarish. We couldn't get into fast maneuvering "dogfights", we had to rely on pure force and ultra-coolness to get us through. And we did get through. With both of us sitting on, combined with the extra size and iron railing, the thing must have weighed over 250 pounds. Once we got going, it was pure death coming towards you. Nothing could stop us. People standing on the side would throw sleds out into our path and we'd run over 'em, leaving nothing but kindling and obscenities behind. If we hit you, you went down. And you didn't get back up. My only regret was that there was no siding to the contraption. Otherwise, we could have marked our kills like the aces of old. We WERE the Blue Max...
I am certainly glad I had a chance to grow up when I did and where I did. The lessons learned were valuable, and sledding was a big part of it. The fact that my hands now shake uncontrollably, that I wake up every night screaming , and am dependent on mainlining bourbon to maintain have been a small price to pay.

Happy Thomas Crapper Day!

Monday, January 26, 2009

The Tank Collector

This is a really amazing collection.

(Thanks for the link, Chris!)

the ultimate Inaugural photo

neat stuff!

(Thanks for the link, Mathew!)

Happy Birthday Babylon 5!

First broacast on this date in 1994. Fun show!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

U.S. Conquers Soviet Union

my favorite place names...

the cutting edge of illegal immigration

The Best Best Man Speech

Anniversary of the Battle of Mengo!

One of my fave battles. Occured in 1892 when Roman Catholic and Anglican missionaries fought each other with machine guns to determine who'd conquer Uganda. Ah, civilization!

Happy National Irish Coffee Day!

Happy Birthday to M*A*S*H!

The film premiered on this date in 1970. Fun movie.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

And we plod along...

My old friend Susan lost her Father last week. It was one of those situations (like with my own Father) where it was not a surprise - but of course it was. There is an absence, and it is there, and it is real, and it is very much noticeable no matter how prepared you think you might be for it.
It is at times like these that I and many others lapse into a form of magical thinking - hoping that there is some expression, some collection of words that one can utter that will make things better, or at least add some measure of comfort. But the words don't really exist; the spell remains uncast. We are left muttering about being sorry, and that's about it. Susan - Linda and I are there for you; we know that's not enough, but that's all there can be. It's a damn shame...
Loss can happen at any time, of course - and it does. But to my mind it is particularly pointed at this time of year. I really don't think I suffer from any of the real or imagined seasonal disorders*, but there's always been something about January that speaks to me of loss and a certain desperate feeling. I've written before about nights spent in less than sober abandon wandering about the bars of Gtown or Foggy Bottom (with some of you reading this in attendance...) during this time of year back in the 70's. We faced unemployment, lost lovers, lost opportunities and grimy weather. In late January, DC is still facing another probable seven to eight weeks of gray and cold weather. It's one of those times that leaves you thinking; wondering where you've been and where you're going, (if anywhere). You count your losses and see if you can cover all your bets. Sometimes the tally gets grim.
At any rate, one of the big hits from those days was Al Stewart's "Time Passages", (written for another old friend of mine...). The lyrics express the season perfectly - seeming to look both forward and backward simultaneously. Al is a master of verbal time distortion. It seemed appropriate then, and just as much so now. Enjoy.
As for me, I'll be taking the last train home tonight. See ya tomorrow...

(*I am disordered in all seasons....)

The Cutting Edge Of Inauguration Day Sales

Batman VS Florida

interesting blog on the Russian navy

Ab Fab in L.A.?

The original was fun, hopefully this'll be okay.

funny condom ad
And the out-takes are at:

(Thanks for the links, Chris!)

the cutting edge of banking

neat article on spitting cobras

The Return of the Monster Times

magic cheese

650 million years seen in about a minute...

Nigerian Police Techniques On Parade!;_ylt=AioynFHg9u.Kjhk6wRZjDhHtiBIF

how to lose a car

Happy Birthday Benjamin Lincoln!

A patriot.

Happy Paul Pitcher Day!

An obscure Cornish holiday that I'm single-handedly reviving...

Happy Birthday Warren Zevon!

Great songwriter. An American original.

Happy Birthday john Belushi!

Happy Birthday Neil Diamond!

Happy National Eskimo Pie Patent Day!!openframeset&frame=Right&Src=/edible.nsf/pages/eskimopieday!opendocument

Friday, January 23, 2009

gas warfare in the ancient world

the cutting edge of winning...

Happy Birthday Leadbelly!

Genius. Legend. Essential.

Happy Birthday Phantom Dan!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Happy Birthday Robert E. Howard!

One of the great fantasy writers - creator of Conan.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

review of Bruce's new album

I've only heard a few snippets so far. The review seems accurate enough, (until I've digested the whole album). I'm not sure I'm onboard that all of Springsteen's lyrics have to be profound. Certainly the many influences pointed out by the reviewer weren't always competing with Dylan, (ofttimes Dylan isn't competing with Dylan). It sounds pretty cool, actually.


The fact that I am typing this is proof enough that DC, and I, survived the Inauguration. There were incidents, yes, but they were remarkably few and no where near what could have occurred, given the numbers. I'm sure the whole security apparatus will claim the success as their own. Maybe, but I doubt it. The kindest thing I'll say is that they apparently didn't make things so bad that catastrophes would have been encouraged. But I think a large portion of the credit must simply go to the citizenry. 2+ million people got together and behaved remarkably well. They drove much better than expected, (or is normal for our Mad Max-like highways). And they stayed calm and smart throughout it all. Again, I'm sure there were incidents and assholes. But for 2 mil, they didn't even register. What can I say, I'm impressed. Everyone gets a gold star for the day.

Happy Birthday Richie Havens!

One of the great singers and interpreters of pop music. When Richie covers a tune, he makes it his own.

Happy Birthday Edwin Starr!

Happy Birthday Wolfman Jack!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

the warning


I always croak at weddings

I prefer a stake and garlic...

the little jail that couldn't

Medical Submarine

Amazing stuff!

the return of the Poe Toaster,0,2772228.story

here we go...

At 7:00AM the Mall is already a sea of people, the major roads are gridlocked. We're grinding to a quick halt here. There has been a near constant buzz of helicopters passing over the Manor for the past hour. Reading between the lines, I can tell that all the parking from the center of town out to Franconia and Greenbelt is now taken up (that's about 8-12 miles for you outlanders). Shirley Highway is supposedly backed up to Occoquan, (which is better than I'd of thought. I figured by now Richmond would be snarled). But I'd also point out that most of the reports are probably woefully behind on timing. The reporters are either stuck in traffic, or covering the heart of the action in DC.
My main concern would be Wilson Bridge, it's been made the epicenter of all traffic in the mid-Atlantic region by today's Inaugural. If there's an accident there, even a fender bender, or a flat tire, or someone just slows down to look at the Potomac, it's going to be the ripple effect from hell. We'll simply have to give up, abandon the city (by walking), and start up a new Capital somewhere else...

Happy Birthday Bones!

Happy Birthday George Burns!

Happy Birthday to Meet The Beatles!

Released on this date in 1964. The Revolution Begins!!

Happy Anniversary to One Step Beyond!

One of the great TV shows, debuted on this date in '59. If you enjoyed The Twilight Zone - this is where the idea came from....

Monday, January 19, 2009

The Shell Game


RIP Bob May - The Lost In Space Robot

I admire his priorities

I sure hope it was a Stone Ale.

the cutting edge of blushing brides...

some words of wisdom for visiting DC

I might add a few more:

1. If you're lost while driving, pull over. Do not slow down. Pull over. Get out of the god damned way.

2. Pay attention to traffic lights. When it's Green - go. Don't sit around like some jerk.

3. The place is a newcomer's nightmare - get a map and learn to use it.

4. Never ever ever drive under 55mph on the highway. Never ever try to get on one doing less than that. 60 is better, and 70 better yet.

5. If you fly in, realize that of the 3 airports, BWI is so far away that it will take you days to get anywhere else. And no one will pick you up there. Don't even ask.

6. The District of Columbia is a separate Federal district. It is not, I repeat - NOT, in any state, no matter how incomprehensible that seems to you. So stop asking about it and debating with us when we tell you. You just look stupid.

7. If you're from Texas, stop talking about it, (I know it'll be hard). We couldn't care less.

8. We know that the traffic circles are insane, that the congestion is horrid, that crime is rampant, and that prices are outrageous. We know.

9. Telling people here that you're a taxpayer and thus should be treated better than everyone else just makes you look as dumb as you really are. It doesn't work in your hometown, and it sure as hell won't work here. We're all soaked up in taxes - you aren't special.

10. If you come in the Winter it's going to be dark, cold, wet, drab and downright ugly. If you come in Summer it will be hotter than the sun, with humidity to match. You've been warned.

one step closer to a cloaking device...

Chinese fascists fear Milli Vanilli

(Actually, I do too....)


Cool and funny animation.

the bossy parrot

Happy Birthday Edgar Allan Poe!

The Master....

Happy Birthday Phil Everly!

One of the Immortals. Essential.

Happy Birthday Janis!


Happy National Popcorn Day!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Obamastock - a little review

I watched the Inaugural music concert on TV this afternoon (HBO took time out from charging obscene rates to watch twenty year old movies to broadcasting these festivities for free). I admit it, I was impressed. Now, you're not going to get the best performances in the world, and something like this is always a pyramid of conflicting priorities and compromises. But I really did think it worked pretty well. Bruce was great, of course, although I would have had him perform two songs rather than allowing U2 to do so, (personal preference). And although I'm not a fan of Garth Brooks, the fact that he performed Shout was a real kick. (I don't know why we couldn't have had the Isleys there doing it, however). There's something inherently American about that song - the joy, the energy, etc. I've always believed that R&B and Rock'N'Roll are the ultimate battle hymns against ignorance and evil. "Shout" trumps our opponent's anthems, anytime...
Obama and Biden's speeches were pretty good, (although I personally get bored with the sound bites about Lincoln - another personal prejudice). But the finale was quite moving. Pete Seeger, in what is probably close to being a farewell performance, leading the crowd in singing This Land Is Your Land, (and leaving in the more pointed lyrics!) - now that was something. That person, that song, this event. A moment of historical evolution - crystalized. Really something. Politics is symbolism. And this was symbolism on a grand scale to those of us with a sense of history and sociology.
I do not share the deep emotions many people have about the new Prez, either pro or con. Caution and cynicism increase with every year. But it was a good show; it had some points to make, and it did so about as well as the situation allowed.
And finally, I'd point out that it was one nice the backdrop. Despite the best efforts of the criminals who run this city, DC is still one of the most moving places in the nation. To be at the Lincoln Memorial and stare out across the reflecting pool towards the Washington Monument is one of the best scenes in the world, (I'd also mention the other views towards the Capitol and across Memorial Bridge to Arlington. To see people gather there, in hope, optimism and joy (even if I don't share it) is quite touching. It's quite a town...

On the 30th Day of Christmas, My True Love Gave To Me...

There's an interesting phenomena going on in this area, and I'm not quite sure if it means anything, or not. I'd guesstimate that about a third of the homes in the area put up some sort of outdoors Christmas lighting and/or display. and normally I'd expect the great majority of those houses to take down their decorations around the first week of January. Oh, there'd always be slackers. Those gutter-hanging icicle lights must be a particular bitch to either put or take down, because the vast majority of homeowners always seem to leave 'em up once they've finally been put in place. And I remember once in our old neighborhood in Alexandria, there were two inhabitants who must have been in some sort of warped competition to see who could keep their evergreen wreaths up as long as possible on their front doors They stayed up, month after month - deeply sunburned fire hazards, like some sort of husk of Christmas past. I don't know if they actually were finally taken down by the owners, or just blew away. But it wasn't until late June that they disappeared, (I am not making this up). And we've all seen the poor old Halloween jack-o-lanterns, left out until Christmas itself. Some people just can't get it together to pick up after themselves. But this year, I'd say easily a third of the folks with Christmas decorations have them still up - even lighting them at night. It doesn't seem like laziness, not in those numbers. Or if it is, it is a form of communal sloth that I've not been used to. Are economic fears making folks try to hold onto a representation of joy? Is perpetual Christmas now some sort of folk art? Has my old neighbors' scenes of competitive decoration rot spread to the new neighborhood? I just don't know. It's a little strange.

Tee Hee!

Always hated shoplifters....

Rock & Wrap It Up

pretty cool idea...

No If's And's or Butt's...

the super hero...

Happy Birthday David Ruffin!

Happy Birthday Cary Grant!

Happy Pooh Day!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

alternate Star Trek music & credits

Nilsson's Son Of Dracula soundtrack online!

Is it Extreme Ironing or Extreme Diving?

The Poe Stamp


Ah yes, the ancient Tibetan process of neodymium activator magnets with resonator arrays. I know it well. And for only 495 American dollars, (not Tibetan...). I love the efforts to relieve the rich of their money.

the asshole

I admit I've never paid much attention to Irving, me being a fanatic anti-nazi, and all. But I caught this article, and it's nice to see that I've missed no more than the mewlings of a pathetic, spoiled, turd.

DC eliminates its only successful business


more on propeller cars!

I just think these are so cool - especially speeding through a crosswalk....

the world's most dangerous roads

I'd note my disappointment that they don't mention Route 7 between Bailey's Crossroads and 7 Corners....

the frogfish


Japan gets closer to The Matrix

the snail car...

silent radio?

I'm not going to join twitter to find out. If you do, let me know how/if it works...

the wooden car

the puzzle


R2D2 appears in Indiana Jones

great moments in architecture

Star War - Retold

exploring a Soviet nuclear lighthouse

It's Showtime!

Before & After

tee hee!

the terrorist

how your state's economy compares to the world

REH Days

Friends of Old-Time Radio Convention in 10/2009

I wish it were a bit closer. I think this'd be a kick to attend.

RIP John Mortimer - The Defense Rests

If you've not read any of the Rumpole books, (or seen the brilliant TV series) - do so. Wonderful stuff!

Happy Birthday Benjamin Franklin!

One of the Essential men of the Revolution.

Friday, January 16, 2009

It's starting....

My commute home this afternoon was fine, I guess. After all - I made it. But the Inaugural weekend has started. Up on Seminary Road I got caught behind a woman with Florida plates who managed to twist her car into three different cardinal directions in the span of about 50 yards as she attempted to figure out where she wanted to go. (I know where I wanted her to go...). The last I saw of her, the ditz was zig-zagging merrily down towards Quaker Lane. She was immediately replaced by some dude in an obviously rented limo who was too busy pulling his head out of his worthless ass to pay attention to the THREE lanes that he somehow managed to straddle - being hopelessly lost and not wanting to commit to any particular path. I left him heading North towards the District. Good, they know how to take care of the infirm and weak... The trip on Shirley Highway was remarkably easy, except for the number of apparent out-of-towners who, in a state of catatonic panic, insisted on only going 45mph, even with no one ahead of them. For anyone around here, such behavior is an abomination to both god and man. If I had wanted to, I could have killed them - and there's not a jury in 50 miles who'd convict me of anything other than self defense and justifiable homicide.
At any rate, I am home now, and not planning on moving for four days. I've got huge stacks of both books and DVD's, the refrigerator is full, and Linda's on the way home with a gallon of Virginia Gentleman. Let The Deluge Begin....


(Thanks for the link, Millie!)

Happy National Nothing Day!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

RIP Khan

Happy Birthday Chuck Berry!

For me, the REAL King of Rock'N'Roll.

Happy Brithday Vanishing Point!

One of my fave films - and how I learned to drive. I just love it. Premiered on this date in 1971.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

the monkey hangers....

the dangers of coffee

Fortunately, these side effects are negated by the addition of a jigger or two of Jameson's....

RIP to a Free Man, Not A Number

One of the greats. I missed seeing the Beatles on Ed Sullivan because I was too enthralled watching McGoohan play the proto anti-hero Scarecrow of Romney Marsh on Disney that night. As a kid, I was totally enthralled with that character, (and still am - the DVD was FINALLY released last month and Linda got it for me for the Holidays - it was wonderful watching it again). Then a couple years later, Secret Agent came out (it had started as a series in Britain called Danger Man), and I was enthralled again by the more serious and cerebral entry in the whole mass media spy thing. (McGoohan was originally offered the role of James Bond, but turned it down). It's still in my Top 20 TV shows of all time. And then we come to The Prisoner. Probably my all-time fave TV show. And what a show! You can see a bloated ad slower-witted progeny in the series "Lost", and more intelligent renditions and hints in The Matrix, V For Vendetta, Babylon 5, The X Files, and almost any film dealing with fears of the State and society, and doubts about one's place there. McGoohan was one of those rare entertainers who considered thinking to be part of that entertainment. He was absolutely Essential.

Happy Mallard Day!

Happy Cakes & Ale Day!

Glenn Brenner died on this date in 1992

A local treasure. The only reason I'd ever watch sports news. I really do miss this guy. Glenn was genuine.

Happy Ratification Day!

Congress ratified the Treaty of Paris on this date in 1784, officially ending the Revolutionary War.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Walker Brothers perform The Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Anymore

Great Spectorish production...

Judy Collins performs Both Sides Now

Ah, it was one of your proverbial hot August nights, about a hundred years ago at Merriweather Post, that I first heard her perform this tune - just staring up at the stars wondering what would ever happen to me. I'm still trying to figure that out. But it was a beautiful night.

Poco performs A Good Feeling To Know

My fave song by them. Always reminds me of my beloved Colorado....

The Lords of the New Church video for Open Your Eyes

Stiv Bators was great...

R. B. Greaves performs Take A Letter Maria

Wonderful song. I'm pretty sure this clip was taken from the old Music Scene TV show.

Sixpence None The Richer performs There She Goes

Great cover...

It begins...

I completely stand by my earlier statements and predictions. This is going to be the ugliest thing since the '68 riots. What's interesting is how vulnerable DC is and always will be to terrorist attack. It's the 900 pound gorilla in the room, that everyone tries to ignore. You can't make this place or event "safe". Despite the police-state mentality that's grown around here over the past 35 years, it's childishly simple to freeze this town. I, and anyone who has lived here any length of time can easily come up with a half a dozen ways, and cheaply too. I won't go into them here. But I will point out a mini-example: the infamous DC snipers. Two losers, (openly aided by the ultra-incompetent egomaniac of a police chief of Montgomery County) put this town into a tizzy for weeks. They were poor and they were crazy wankers. Think of what a bunch of truly smart and prepared people could do, (even if Chief Moose is history...). Sorry police staters - you can't stop it if they want it to happen; you can only gridlock the entire region in your futile quest to do so.



the cutting edge of blushing brides...;_ylt=AgD2HX92TVmOLaz48AajOPas0NUE

Jedi toys on the way....

Of course, the toy companies will eventually discover that the mind links can work both ways and begin programming the little tykes to demand even more crap....

Eat me


(Thanks for the link, Chris!)

market trends

Happy Birthday Klarkash-Ton!

Probably my fave fantasy writer. Absolutely wonderful.

Monday, January 12, 2009

The Monks perform Nice Legs, Shame About Her Face

Fun stuff! Never well known, and now almost forgotten....

The Dave Clark Five perform Catch Us If You Can

My fave DC5 song. Proto-Sixties rebelliousness.

The Ohio Players perform Love Rollercoaster

Funk silliness, but I've always liked this song. If I remember correctly, this song was inescapable in all the Gtown bars about 33 years ago...

The Radiators From Space perform Television Screen
I love the Rads, and I doubt the number of Americans who've heard of them would need two hands to count them. They were on the old pub rock label, Chelsea, (along with great Count Bishops) and were one of the few groups (along with the legendary Eddie & The Hot Rods) to form the "missing link" from pub rock to punk rock around '76 and '77. That period of time was very short, but very intense and exciting. There's a wonderful Rhino box set just waiting to happen for those days....

Three Dog Night perform Mama Told Me Not To Come

Love this old Randy Newman tune. Reminds me of my first "adult" party. I was a freshman in high school and invited to an acquaintance's place for a party that had college students attending. I stood wide-eyed with amazement throughout it, and am sure I looked like a total dweeb. And now I sit here in my jaded, cynical and besotted state, incapable of anything short of mild amusement. Such is the way of things....

The Marvelettes perform a medley

Classic Motown.

The Hollies perform On A Carousel


The Cosmic Katrina!

I've got my galoshes ready...

Happy Birthday John Hancock!

Happy Feast of the Fabulous Wild Men Day!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Happy Burning the Clavie Day!

the preformance
This may be a rather unfair experiment. Everyone's late for work, the station is crowded and hurried, etc. Set him up at Dupont Circle at luchtime and see what happens.

perhpas the ultimate Trekkie gift idea...

Happy Birthday Alexander Hamilton!

Happy Birthday, Big Man!

Happy Birthday to The Night Stalker!

Broadcast on this date in 1972. Great and fun horror movie.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Steampunk Lego!

AMC is streaming The Prisoner!!!!

Great news!

Red Rum

Nifty idea...

the devilish gardens of Francois Houtin

Neat sutff!

rescue at Red Mountain Pass

Very lucky coincidence for that truck driver. Have driven that road many times (in the Summer) and even then it can be intinidating to a flatlander. I can't imagine it in Winter.

Aniversary of Paine's Common Sense

A great book, one of the most influential and important ever written. Published on this date in 1776.

Happy Birthday Jim Croce!

I've always disliked his rockers, (Leroy Brown, etc.) and loved his ballads. A very under-rated songwriter.

Happy Birthday Rod Stewart!

Another fave.

Happy Birthday Pat Benatar!

Happy Birthday to Metropolis!

One of my fave silent movies. Very influential. Debuted on this date in 1927.

Happy Peculiar People Day!

Friday, January 09, 2009

God performs Badge

Berlin performs No More Words

Love this song - no more words and no more promises....

The Brooklyn Bridge perform The Worst That Could Happen

Ah, spring of '69. This was probably the last true doo wop hit. Great song.


A reversal of extinction?

algae fuel

The Standells perform Sometimes Good Guys Don't Wear White

So cool....

The Brothers Johnson perform Strawberry Letter #23

Beautiful mellow funk.

Grand Funk perform I'm Your Captain

A wonderful mix of early hard rock and balladeer tune.

The Stones perform Wild Horses

You're up all night worrying and scared. Then this tune comes on the radio at 3:00AM. It doesn't comfort, but it does educate.

Uriah Heep perform Easy Livin'

Classic early prog rock.

new (to me) militaria retailer

just got a snail mail catalog from these guys. Their focus is almost entirely western 20th century stuff. Lots of models, toy soldiers, and gee gaws to satisy your inner warmonger....

Sandy Denny performs a medley

Wonderful voice.

how to break bad news...

(Thanks for the link, Nick!)

Happy Birthday Lee Van Cleef!

So cool, one of my faves...

Happy Birthday Jimmy Page!

Happy Birthday David Johansen!

Happy Birthday Joan Baez!

Happy Birthday Little Buddy!

Thursday, January 08, 2009


As everyone know, in just over a week, we'll have the Inauguration here in D.C. It's always a big shindig, with lots of out-of-towners, additional traffic, celebrations and events everywhere, and large portions of town closed off for the festivities. Now, don't get me wrong, it's a very important event and it should be a matter of celebration,etc. But it is also a huge hassle for those of us stuck in it. We persevere.
But now it appears to be The End. The minimum predictions are for a million people to come in - and some are predicting four times that many! It'll practically double the population of the metro area. There's not room for one million, much less four! And there are claims of 10,000 chartered buses. Don't even think about all the cars coming in, there's no frigging way you can find room for 10,000 buses in the District. I'm not sure you could do it inside the Beltway. They'll be parking 'em in Leesburg! And the cars! Where the hell will they go?!? Mark my words, you'll be able to set up parking lots in the Shenandoah - and get takers. For there will be no parking in the District. The core has been taken over - both for driving and parking. All the folks who'd normally be there (both natives and visitors), will be pushed out to the fringes of the Capital and the neighboring suburbs of Maryland, which will crowd out and displace more people who will move outward, like the a rippling effect of the damned. Imagine getting your hands on the biggest, ugliest, smelliest armful of camel turds that you can, and then throwing that glob into a murky cesspool full of unidentifiable dead things. That's what the parking situation is going to be like.
Now today, I got a flier at work describing in detail all of the road closings for the area on the inaugural weekend. I looked it over, and nearly fainted. I could only keep screaming out, OH....MY....GOD..... Every bridge across the Potomac except for the Beltway is closed. Shirley Highway is closed. 66 inside the Belway is closed. Parts of the GW Parkway are closed. Now, please remember, the Beltway bridges form an integral part of the whole Interstate 95 corridor - the main north/south highway in America. Just the trucks and drive-by traffic alone is horrendous, even on a good day. And now they're going to try and funnel the rest of DC AND the trillion inaugural visitors onto those bridges and off those other roadways. I...I can't think of the terms to describe this. Adjectives fail me. It'll be like some nightmare from the Book of Revelations. The traffic jam is going to some sort of grid-locked Boschian drug coma. It won't be just DC - this thing is going to back up traffic to places that won't even know what hit them. It'll last for years. It may never clear out. Whole generations will be born and die at the Springfield interchange. After a few centuries, mutations will arise and breed, forming some sort of cannibalistic highway species, feeding on people stuck in buses. It will be horrible. I can see traffic jams in all directions, affecting Baltimore, Wilminton, York, Thurmont, Hagerstown, Frederick, Winchester, Culpepper, Fredericksburg, Richmond, Harper's Ferry, Annapolis, and even Delmarva, (as folks attempt to side-step the apocalpse in DC).
The fact is, that with all of these road closures and the effect it'll have, your road maps will be worse than useless. You'd be better off with a copy of Dante's Inferno. That'll be more accurate and instructive.
Linda and I were first considering leaving town for the weekend. But we honestly don't think we'd be able to get back in! We're hunkering down. I'm busily stocking up on bourbon to prepare me for the horrors to come. And they will come. It is perhaps fortunate that we don't have children, as I'd probably kill them the Friday before, to prevent them from witnessing or succumbing to any of the hellishness to come. But, as it is, I'm reduced to scouring the neighborhood for others' children, to "save" them instead. I am a generous person, and would hate to see them suffer so...
At any rate, for those of you who have had some sort of hankering to visit our city during these times, I have one bit of heartfelt advice - DON'T! I wouldn't come within 150 miles of this hellmouth. In fact, I wouldn't even look in our general direction between the 16th and the 23rd, regardless of where you are. This is going to be something....

Happy Birthday Robbie Krieger!

Happy Birthday Graham Chapman!

Happy Birthday David Bowie!

Happy Birthday Little Anthony!

Happy Birthday Elvis!

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Death By Weirdness...

the sex crime

Captain Kirk's bottle opener

Happy Distaff Day!

I am never never never never going skiing. EVER!

(Thanks for the link, Linda!)

Happy Birthday Charles Addams!

Genius. Essential.

Happy Birthday to The Avengers!

Debuted on this date (in Britain) in 1961. One of my fave TV shows.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009


RIP Ron Asheton

What a life. A legend.

going up...

a new type of vehicle armor

Crystal Head Vodka

Great bottle, you just know that the vodka's gonna be mediocre. I almost never touch the stuff now. I still remember being disgusted with Jimmy Carter's nomination back in the summer of '76. I had a fifth of Smirnoff's and a bag of peanuts which I proceeded to devour in my disgust- and have not been the same since. The one exception to my abstinence is my too-infrequent excursions to the Serbian Crown. There's something about feasting on wild boar, listening to gypsy violins and being served by some sort of Czarist exile that makes vodka essential to the mix.

a hunk of burning love....

(Thanks for the link, Sandy!)

just another day in the District

The judges are insane, the cops are stupid and corrupt, and the mayor is a crack head. My Hometown!

Happy Birthday Gustav Dore!

One of my favorite artists. Great stuff!

Happy Birthday Rowan Atkinson!

Genius. Essential.

Happy Birthday Sherlock Holmes!

Happy Plough Monday!

Monday, January 05, 2009

The Iceman performs Only The Strong Survive


Tull performs Aqualung
It's a typical January here in DC, it's wet and chilly, the sky a forlorn gray and predictions of worse weather tomorrow. The heat grates will be crowded tonight.

Eric Burdon performs Sky Pilot

I still remember the first time I heard this, my friend Ron, (one of the old neighborhood gang) had just purchased it, and I was totally blown away. It may have have been the first pop song to feature bagpipes in it. This version is quite ragged. But then, so is Eric, and I'm feeling somewhat tattered myself.

The Records perfrom Starry Eyes

First rate power pop.

Tequila & Tampons....

(Thanks for the link, Mathew!)

Awwww - Cthulhu Crochet!

So cute!

Glide Suits

Great film, awesome antics, no way I'd ever think about doing it.

(Thanks for the link, Millie!)

Happy Anniversary to Greetings From Asbury Park!

One of my all-time fave albums. Released on this date in 1973. Part of my DNA....,_N.J.

Happy Birthday Stephen Decatur!

One of the great American warriors.

Happy Birthday Robert Duvall!

One of my fave actors.

Happy Twelfth Night!

Happy Handsel Day!

Sunday, January 04, 2009

The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, 12/31/1965

Featuring the Amazing Criswell, the Muppets and Woody Allen - an amazing collection.

Phil Silvers appears on What's My Line

Garden of Decay

Neat artwork based on decrepit factories and other buildings.

Upcoming monster movies

Darwin Award "winners"

messing with Thor

The Ouray Ice Festival starts this week!

I've always kind of wanted to go there for the festival. I know it'd be unbelievably cold, (even in the summer Ouray can get a little nippy), but some of the photos I've seen have been amazing.

Happy Birthday Michael Stipe!

Happy Trivia Day!

Saturday, January 03, 2009

for Trekkies - what's happening in the future...

This is kind of neat, actually. I've been tempted to do something similiar for the benefit of players in my fantasy role playing campaign for in-between gaming sessions.

Happy Birthday Stephen Stills!

Happy Birthday Sergio Leone!

One of the greats.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Happy Birthday Christine Lavin!

One of my fave folkies. Absolutely charming....

Happy Birthday El Kabong!

Debuted on this date in 1960....

Happy Science Fiction Day!

Thursday, January 01, 2009

the hike...

the beer pager

Not necessary. I've never lost track of a drink in my life....

dinnerware of the damned

the Cthulhu weenie roaster...;jsessionid=E03AE2029619A102CB8756ACB201F777.qscstrfrnt04?categoryId=1&productId=3

I want one of these....

Cthulhu Origami

Happy Birthday Country Joe!

Happy Birthday Paul Revere!

Happy Birthday Betsy Ross!

Happy First Footing!

Happy Feast of Fools & Asses!

Happy New Year!

I hope everyone is having a fun celebration, and hope that this coming year will bring you happiness.