Sunday, February 18, 2007

Oh, to be able to right-click real life…(random stuff)

First random topic…I never go to bars or whatever to meet new people, but if I start, I’m totally saving this line for reference…“I might not be the best looking guy here, but beauty's only a light switch away…”

Second random topic…I love Jim Schutze. He gets his knickers in a twist over the exact same kind of stuff that I do. Basically, he can’t stand being fed any amount of bullshit about anything and I can’t either. I get the feeling we have similar personalities…(hopefully) lovable curmudgeons who try to joke when we’re not bitching. Probably the only differences between us are that I swear way more than he does and people actually read what he’s bitching about. He’s one of the few writers who keep the Observer legitimate, in my opinion…

Third random topic…I’ve never cared for award shows or halls of fame or any of that stuff. But even though I think the idea of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is pretty stupid, I always have strong opinions about who should or should not be inducted every time the nominations are announced.

The First Major Annoyance with regard to this subject is that The Pretenders were inducted. On the first try, no less. I find this highly annoying because, a.) “The Pretenders” released two albums…the first being one of the greatest albums of all time and the second being one of the greatest examples of “sophomore slump” of all time; after that it was the Chrissie Hynde Show, which proved to be much less impressive and suggests to me – as with David Byrne and Talking Heads – that the leader of the band is/was only as good as her/his collaborators. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, necessarily. But in Chrissie Hynde’s case, it’s especially annoying because she’s one of the biggiest phonies and hypocrites in rock music. She wrote some good songs after half the original incarnation of The Pretenders died by overdose…it’s just that there were only about maybe six or so over a twenty-plus year period. Not very award-worthy, in my opinion.

The Second Major Annoyance is that Van Halen were inducted on their first nomination while it took Black Sabbath, like, five times or something. That is so, so hideously wrong on so many levels. Yes, I’d put Van Halen in. But Black Sabbath – as much as the Beatles, the Stones, Zeppelin and The Clash (and I’m being serious) – should have been an absolute no-brainer, slam-dunk, pick your cliché. Think about it…for better or worse, heavy metal and all the related genres – bands from Slayer to Nirvana – would probably have never existed. I honestly can’t think of another band on the planet who has been so influential. Again, I’m not kidding. They invented their own genre…period. Yes, they were bloated and embarrassing toward the end of the 70s, but the first half of that original lineup was as important to the history of hard rock as anything else…ever. Prove me wrong, goddamit.

Fourth random topic…There has been a series of events that has propelled (read: dragged kicking and screaming) me into the twentieth century recently. Just in time for the twenty-first, I know. While I have always believed strongly in the need to have a cell phone, I have also always had a great reluctance to actually use my cell phone much…a reluctance that was based as much on lack of necessity as it was my fear of gizmos. Nevertheless, because of the aforementioned series of events, I have become – oh, god – Cell Phone Guy. At least, compared to what I was prior to a few weeks ago, anyway…

The series of events in a nutshell: For the last five-plus years, I have only had one credit card, which also happened to be my bank card. Well, a couple weeks ago, somebody got hold of my card number (probably online) and started charging a bunch of fraudulent shit up in New York. (The good news, for me, was that they didn’t go off and buy some high-definition, high-plasma, high-whatever TV or something…they actually used it for ordinary stuff: a meal at McDonalds, a bus pass, some stuff at Home Depot. So part of me actually feels good that, while it was theft, at least they were stealing shit that helped them get through a day. They got fed, they got taken some place they needed to go, perhaps fixed something at home. I can live with that.) Fortunately, the fraud was caught quickly, but it left me without a credit card…and since I rarely carry cash, this was a problem of some significance for me. I spent much of the rest of that day running home from work to get my checkbook, running to the bank to write a check to get cash, running back to work to get online, talk to the credit card people, etc. And since I was running about – and knew that I’d be working all weekend – I had to rely on my cell phone for all the different people who needed to get in touch with me about different things. (I should also mention that I was more or less “on call” because of some projects at work and needed to be able to drop everything and run across town for extended periods of time, be updated on the progress of said projects constantly, etc.)

Anyone who knows me knows I have zero patience, tolerance, talent and disposition for anything technology-related. (The irony that I’m blogging about this is not lost on me, by the way. But I must point out that the extent of my computer skills and understanding is basically typing. I can type the fuck out of anything. That’s why all my posts are so goddamn long. It’s not because I have anything important or brilliant to say…I can just type whatever comes to mind almost immediately. Talented hands, perhaps…not so talented brain. Oh, and I know you can sometimes right-click on something and save it. Occasionally, I’ll just right-click on something for no good reason…just ‘cause I know something computer-y will happen when I do. Beyond that, though, I’m basically a chimp.)

I’m not like many folks who are drawn like moth to flame to anything with buttons, lights, bells, whistles or otherwise pokey things. Indeed, I am repelled immediately and almost violently from them – much like a crucifix to a vampire or empathy to a Republican – because they immediately reveal my true nature as a complete and utter retard toward all things…I don’t even know how to say it. Technological? It’s not “detail-oriented” because I’m good with shit like that at work (and, in fact, the words are in the title of my Monster resume that has been floating uselessly up in the cyber ether for longer than I can remember). My co-workers would confirm this…the fact that I am the absolute shit when it comes to knowing, remembering and communicating the most mind-numbing minutea regarding anything product-related (I still haven’t decided if my job gradually made me anal-retentive in some ways or if it instead just brought that previously-dormant quality to the surface – I prefer the former theory, but can’t confirm). But I’ve always been this way and I don’t know why. Back in the day when I could halfway-seriously call myself a “musician,” I had absolutely no patience for other musicians…mostly because, if they weren’t talking about music theory or some other shit that broke music down into, like, math or something, they were constantly going on about their gear; this pedal does this, you plug this thing in here, hook this to that to this and you can find yourself with a thousand sound options for…bleh. I have always been a “just let me fucking hit the ‘on’ button and go” kind of guy. And not in any sort of Unabomber-y way…I don’t have any philosophical problem with technology. I just know I can’t process the shit.

I do know that whenever the time comes for me to replace this antiquated hunk of shit in front of which I’m sitting now for a new, more bitchin’ model, I’m going to have to ask Val or Julie or somebody with some sort of computer knowledge to go with me. Otherwise, I’m just going to end up in a Best Buy at midnight, crying and drooling all over myself before passing out and being taken somewhere for “evaluation.” It will be nice to have something that doesn’t freeze up automatically whenever I have more than two things open…but the transition will not be pretty, I’m sure.

That's all. Just wanted to vent.

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Anonymous Mick666 said...

Chrissie Hynde a Phoney? You got to be shitting me, she's the opposite of that. She's so real she makes most people uncomfortable. You are so dead wrong. Just because the woman made an anti war statement before anyone and I mean people hate her...Guess what she was has cost us many lives and trillions of dollars. Bush is an idiot. So....Have you seen her live lately? Fucking great....and another thing it's not a popularity contest for her so she'll speak her mind to her end.....and Pretenders II was pretty damn good and it still stands the test of time. Check out the Rhino reissue. Yah a Phoney!

7:08 PM  

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