Friday, February 24, 2006

Sin City - My New Home

Well, for better or worse, here I am in Las Vegas. I've been working on a journal of my trip and life out here. I will post it in increments. Here's Part #1:

It is Saturday, February 18th, 2006. I am sitting in our tent at the Lake Mead camp ground area in Nevada, just outside of Las Vegas. My companions and friends, Kevin S. and David B. are preparing to hike into the desert like mountains just East of this camp site. We began our journey to move here to Las Vegas two weeks ago on February 4th. We set out that night around 10:00pm from my mom's place in Ephrata, PA after saying goodbye to our friends and family.

OK, so that first entry was short and dull. But it was a start. I promise it gets better (I think). But you'll have to wait for either my next visit to the internet cafe down the street...

Thursday, February 02, 2006

The Scream


Sorry... I needed that...

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Currently Listening

The Kills - No Wow
Arcade Fire - Funeral
The Fiery Furnaces - EP
Pierce Pettis - Everything Matters
The Wallflowers - Red Letter Days

Saturday, April 23, 2005

Credit Woes

So, I've managed to spend the first 24 and a half years of my life getting along just fine without a credit card. Sure, I used to get sent those "pre-approved" Visa card applications, but I always threw them out. Then, one day, I'm not sure when, they stopped coming. Well, now I'd really like to start building my credit rating -- at some point it would be nice to be able to get a loan from a bank for say, a car or house -- and wouldn't you know it, I can't even get a department store card because I've got insufficient credit history.

Well, duh! I've spent my life so far avoiding debt -- er, I mean credit.

Also, I just realized that in the last three months I've only slept past noon once. That's a scary thing...

Friday, April 22, 2005

Update! Update!

The last three months have been an utter whirlwind of activity at work. Up until the 1st month of this year I worked for a small chain of video stores as an assistant manager. Then, at the end of January I was promoted to manager a scant two weeks before we were sold to Movie Gallery, the fastest growing video chain in the world.

Well, one of our other stores that was sold had the entire staff walk out and I was asked to go fill in. It's about a 50 minute drive from where I live, but I said OK -- I wasn't execting to be there for more than a week or two. Well, two and a half months later I'm still there and working 60-90 hours a week. I'm exhausted, but I keep on going and I've made a good deal of progress at the store. So much more needs to be done, but we did rank the #1 store in our district a few weeks ago.

The blessing/curse of the store is our tanning services. Whoever thought of putting tanning beds in a video store ought to be strung and quartered. I have no interest in selling tanning services, but we are like hotcakes, so that's what I'm doing.

A week into being there my car broke down (RIP) and I spent a small fortune on a rental car. Now I've got a new ride, but the CD player that's in it is shot, so I make my commute in silence. I miss NPR and being able to listen to my CD collection.

Speaking of which, in the scant moments I get, I'm currently listening to:

Eisley - Room Noises
Rachel Yamagata - Happenstance
Jamie Cullum - twentysomething
The Verve - This is Music: The Singles 92-98
Bright Eyes - Digital Ash in a Digital Urn
The Cure - Galore: The Singles 1987-1997
Le Tigre - s/t

Saturday, January 08, 2005

A Solid Case

About three or four years ago I pretty much gave up hope of finding any more singer/songwriters or bands that conected with me in a deep way. From the time I discovered Steve Taylor until the time I discovered Dan Bern I had a wild ride of enlightenment.

Mark Heard, U2, Daniel Amos, the 77s, the Choir, the Call, Vigilantes of Love/Bill Mallonee, Tom waits, Nick Cave, 16 Horsepower and Emmylou Harris all conected with me in a deep and personal way. Plenty of other artists ought to be included on that list, but these are the standouts.

But then I hit a dry spell, and until very recently I've discovered nothing new in the world of music. This, I suppose, is at least partially due to many personal harrows in the last few years; but the musical landscape seemed a bleak place.

I had read plenty of good reviews about Neko Case and her voice, so I finally broke down and bought a copy of Blacklisted, her second solo album. While I can't say it affected me the way some of the previous artists I've listed did, her voice is amazing. And her songs are haunting. She reminds me a little bit of Maria Mckee with a darker, american-gothic twist.

For me now, it's not so much a matter of discovering earth-shaking musicians; but of appreciating the beauty and artistry of people like Case.

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

Hold it right there, Buckaroo!

Buckaroo Banzai returns? Ain't it Cool News has the rumors...