Sunday, January 27, 2008

january road trip 2008

this past weekend, I went to new orleans with 3 friends: aaron, kyle, frank. I'm all about tradition (my friend evan has driven home the importance of tradition), so after our road trip to bill's wedding in corpus christi, texas, january of last year, we decided to make another road trip january of this year. (corpus christi, by the way, is where people tattoo the word "texas" in cursive along the front of their neck)

so this year, we went to new orleans, and suits were required for part of the trip because suits were part of the deal last year. people asked us why we were in suits and we told them we weren't sure. a girl on the street told us we were freaking everybody out and that they all thought we were FBI agents. and I thought that was ridiculous because FBI agents don't wear skull caps and vintage $5 sunglasses from the french market. and then there was this parade and beads were falling from the sky. gotta love new orleans.






Friday, January 25, 2008

HDR

after several weeks of not doing much with photography, I'm back at it. for some reason, the hours of 4-7am have been my photo-editing hours. weird.

a lot of people ask me about HDR, how I do it, what my technique is. to be completely honest, I'm still figuring out how I do it. I make a lot of mistakes and every now and then I get some that I think I like. the new header, and the following 3hree photos are some I've been working on this morning.



Wednesday, January 23, 2008

MLK day = time with friends

(it was great to see you, george)











Friday, January 11, 2008

blowhole

I recently saw some photos of a friend who went whale watching. from the photos, it looked like the excursion consisted of the following activities: board boat, watch sea, photograph whale tail, observe zero blowholes, return to land.

I’m sorry, but if I journey into the sea for the purpose of seeing a whale, I want to see a blowhole. and not just one blowhole. I want to see one thousand blowholes. I want blowholes to hail from the sky and cut my flesh as I hold up my arms towards the heavens and loudly proclaim my love for the whale, my mammal fish brother who endlessly prowls the sea for the sole purpose of exhaling through the top of his skull.

And really what I’m getting at here is - I want a blowhole. for me, BTM, I want my very own blowhole. I am so weary of constantly having to use my mouth and nose to breathe. It’s cumbersome. It’s annoying. It takes too much time. sometimes I choke. why can’t I have a ventilation option which would happen to be located on the very top of my skull? Is this really too much to ask?

Animals have all sorts of special powers. for example, armadillos are made of steel, and they carry leprosy. and cheetahs have laser vision, and monkeys can use typewriters, and bears are really big and strong. what are human special powers? oh, our big brains? right. that does a lot of good when you ARE TRYING TO BREATHE OUT OF THE TOP OF YOUR SKULL. quite frankly, all my big brain does for me is get in the way of my intended blowhole.

If I were in charge of designing human bodies, I would make everyone else look pretty much how they look now, but when it came to designing myself, I would have special tubes going from my lungs, up my neck*, through my brain** and then there would be a big blowhole on the top of my head. and when I say big I mean BIG. like, it would be at least 9 inches in diameter and would be covered in whatever toenails are made of so I could paint it with nail polish, and I’d paint it solid matte black. and then I would tell people, “hey, what are you breathing out of? your MOUTH? geez that is so lame. look at this 9 inch black matte blowhole here – yup, the one on the top of my head - that’s what I’m breathing out of. your respiration path is SO lame.”


“BTM, I understand why you want a blowhole, but why did you make it so large?”

“The real question is ‘why are nostrils so small?’”


“Good point, I hate my nostrils. they are so small, you are right. you have the best blowhole, ever, BTM”.

“Thanks. I really like it.”


Another thing about whales is that they are mammals.

Just like the ostrich.


* there would be a slight neck bulge, which I would probably cover with masking tape and write the words “TUBE FOR BLOWHOLE”

** I’d remove the parts of my brain I never use to make space for the blowhole, which is actually a fairly large portion of my brain.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

mitt romney = handsome


and his 5ive sons seem to be real nice.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Monday, January 7, 2008

some thoughts on what I like about music

I have noticed that I like sparse, down-tempo, somewhat depressing music. The closer the recording gets to a person and their guitar (and for some reason, I like hearing the guitar), the more likely I am to enjoy it. think: mark kozelek, chris miner, jon black’s acoustic demos (you have got to hear them), brad lyons, a.a. bondy, jeff tweedy solo concerts, the new unknown from lasers edge that I have playing in the car.

the a.a. bondy record is currently on heavy repeat for me. my friend greg summerlin put this record out on his label, superphonic, and I’ve been hearing about it for months, but finally purchased a copy at (the sadly deceased) lasers edge last week. In case you’re wondering, a.a. bondy claims a top-ten spot on many 2007 lists for a very good reason.

so anyway, I’m listening to this record, and I’m realizing how much I resonate with this music, and a friend says, “is all your music this depressing? what is this song about, anyway?” and I say “I don’t know what it’s about. it doesn’t really matter to me what the song is about.”

clint wells. we all know clint wells. well, clint is working on some new material. correction: clint wells is working on a lot of new material. new years eve, he says to me “hey I want you to hear some stuff I’ve been working on” so we climb into his cold ford explorer, and sit in silence as he plays me cuts from demos and rough mixes. It’s been about a month since clint and I have really hung out, and I was shocked to hear how much he’d accomplished. the new songs are good, and the best ones (to me) are the ones that are so simple, so naked, so vulnerable that it feels like the song is a living thing, not a voice and an instrument. and clint said to me that someone asked him what these new songs are about, and he said “I don’t know” and I smiled.

and then I told clint what I was thinking about just earlier that day. that so many things in life feel worthless, feel contrived. you know the feeling. the parties, the clothes, the cars we drive, the way we talk, the way we think, the places we live, the places we go. there is this unceasing sense that we’re really not getting it. about a week ago, brooke asked me what my dream vacation would be and I asked her to please take me to africa, or south america. somewhere where I can experience a culture that is not like my own, where I can be reminded that this reality I live in is not really all that realistic.

so at the end of the day, when I’m listening to music, or more specifically, when I’m creating music, the music feels like a person who is sort of moaning with their instrument, like a person who has a guitar (or maybe a piano) and you can’t quite tell if the songs are coming from the instrument or from the person. because I think so often, I feel like the music I play comes more out of the piano than out of me. such a strange thing to say, but it just feels true.

so, like I said, I have noticed that I like sparse, down-tempo, somewhat depressing music. I’m okay with that. to me, it’s the quiet, thoughtful music that feels the most real.

I have also realized, since writing this, that the spots sound nothing like the music I usually listen to. interesting. I still love the spots, in case you're wondering.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

best new years, ever.

new years is almost always a let down for me. it's a matter of having appropriate expectations, I know, but still, it's almost always a let down. this year was the first new years in awhile where I've had a gig, and I'm so glad I did, because it was a blast.

those of you who know me know that I love this band, the spots. I honestly can't believe making music can be this much fun. that's the way I feel every time we play.

so new years, we played 2-3 hours at my favorite bar - the speakeasy - and the place was totally packed. probably our biggest crowd ever. shane kept coming up with insane drum ideas, and the rest of us would just fold around him. it was a really great party. thanks to everyone who made it out. I have the best friends in the entire world.

photos courtesy of kari moore.