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(no subject) [Dec. 22nd, 2009|11:14 pm]
My bad, I never updated.

I took the job! Effective January 4, I will be a high school teacher. I can't wait to not work in an office.
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(no subject) [Aug. 5th, 2009|06:59 pm]
Uh oh. I'm behind in reading up on LJ. Can you not go back more than 20 entries anymore? I went back to the second page, but then my only option was "Later," no more "Earlier"s. Did I mess something up in my preferences? Does anyone know?
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(no subject) [Jul. 18th, 2009|12:33 pm]
In my grad school interviews all the faculty had nice things to say, but if they had one consistent criticism, it was that I need more figure drawing. I can take a note, so I found art classes downtown. I've been taking charcoal figure drawing for the last 4 weeks. I've really liked the classes and the teacher has had some really good recommendations. Next week will be my last class, and I'm kind of sad about that. Hopefully they'll have more classes in the fall. One of the models who comes looks kind of like my coworkers, which makes it a touch awkward for me when I run into the coworker in the hall and can't help but wonder if he really looks like that naked. But I can make it through that awkwardness.

What else. I took my parents to see Jersey Boys on Thursday night, it was their Mothers'/Fathers' day gift. They really liked it. I really liked it. Everyone wins! We saw the third-to-last show, and it's sold really well here. (It had a 3-week run, as opposed to the 1-week run the touring Broadway shows usually do.) I would say that the theater was at least 90% full, and 90% of those people were baby boomers. After every song the crowd would go wild. So that was pretty fun. I remember my dad singing Sherry to me when I was little, and my mom telling me about how he and his college roommate used to sing that song all the time. Sherry came out in 1962, when my dad was 8. So I was trying to figure out what songs that would be like for me. When I was 8, these songs were apparently hits. I don't know how reputable the list is, but I'm willing to accept it. There aren't many songs on there that I knew at age 8. Maybe not any. But I would say that by college I did know at least half of them. Ok. Not half, but at least a quarter. So it would be like me and Kristin Payton jamming out to Love Shack or Like a Prayer. Fair enough. I really hope that doesn't mean that in 45 years I'll be throwing my panties on stage at the musical based on the story of Bobby Brown, New Kids On the Block, or Milli Vanilli.

Also, I got a new cell phone. The hinge on my flip phone broke and I've been carrying around a gimp phone for the last 2 weeks, but the day finally came that my plan would let me get a new phone, so I replaced it with the newer version of the exact same phone. I really like it so far. And they fixed the positioning of the speakerphone button, so I don't hit it constantly now when I text. Anyway, in a salute to my old phone, I'm posting the best text messages I received on it (the ones that I saved, anyway.) I've left them anonymous, but feel free to own up to them if you want.

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(no subject) [Jun. 17th, 2009|06:25 am]
Real fast, here are some honorable mentions for my albums. In no particular order.

Kanye West- Late Registration
Steve Miller Band- Greatest Hits
Weird Al Yankovic- Running With Scissors
The J. Geils Band- Freeze Frame
The Beastie Boys- Hello Nasty
Steely Dan- Can't Buy A Thrill
Nine Inch Nails- Pretty Hate Machine
Spring Awakening- the Soundtrack
Great Expectations- the Soundtrack
Assassins- the Soundtrack

That's enough. There are lots of other albums that I really like and that are significant to me, but if I list many more, I'll end up just writing every CD I've ever liked. I would also like to give a small shout-out for Led Zeppelin. I like that band enough that they should be on the list, but I never listened to them in established albums, just mix tape compilations and on the radio, so I would have no basis for picking a favorite album.
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The most bestest ever. [Jun. 12th, 2009|06:07 pm]
#1 Pink Floyd- Dark Side of the Moon. I get goosebumps when I hear this album starting. I, of course, love every track, but get sad when I hear them on the radio, because to me it's not complete without the whole album. It's really soothing to me to listen to the whole thing. It's got the whole Wizard of Oz/Dark Side of the Rainbow thing as a perk if you ever get tired of just listening to it, and the laser shows at planetariums are really fun, too. But I don't really need all of that, most of the time I just want to listen to it by itself. There are lots of other Pink Floyd songs that I like, even whole albums that I like, but none will ever compare to this. I love the undeniably recognizable cover art. In Sound Design, we had to pick a song for which we could remember clearly the circumstances of first time we heard it and play it for the class. I picked Money off of this album. Several people in the class, after I was done talking about it, were like "no, let it ride" when the professor tried to turn it off. (Money is actually the only track name I know, since it gets played on the radio by itself most often.) I will always love Dark Side of the Moon. It makes everything better. I can't stay mad when I listen to it. And yet for all this gentleness, it's still a totally awesome rock album.

Will- I think you would like this album. It might be a little chill for you, but you could like it.
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So close! [Jun. 11th, 2009|06:36 pm]
#2 Jump, Little Children- Magazine. I love this band. I think they're assholes for breaking up and I think they're tools for changing their name to just "Jump" before doing it. But I love them. I'm so glad I got to see them live before the end. I learned about them because of Improv!Able Cause's obsession with the song U Can Look. Then we all (we Furmanites) got really into the song Cathedrals. And then I heard My Guitar. And then I bought the album. defnitelyaj posted about this album too, I agree with all of her comments. I love Jay Clifford's voice and how personal it is. I love every song on this album, and my favorite song on it changes every time that I listen to it (although it is most likely to be My Guitar, Body Parts, B-13, or Say Goodnight.) I have their other albums, all of them, I think. The ones that come after are musically superior (DEFINITELY in the case of Between the Dim and the Dark) but the cohesiveness of this album blows Dim and Dark out of the water. It flows so well, and I love the clever significance of the title. This album has made me cry many times and might be my most listened to album in Kenya. I have played this CD for so many people, and all of them have liked it. I am, in fact, burning a mix CD of this band for someone RIGHT NOW. If you don't have this CD, you should probably buy it. If you ask nicely, I'll probably buy it for you.

Will- I'm pretty sure you already like this CD, although I doubt you have it. You have a pile of their songs on your mp3 player, though, I'm pretty sure.
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You know I'm getting close to the end when you see this band. [Jun. 10th, 2009|10:22 pm]
#3 Queen- A Night At The Opera. I don't have any repeat bands in my list, so the fact that my bar-none favorite band is coming in at #3 should tell you something about how much I love the two albums yet to come. My love for Queen goes back a long way, and has a foundation made of Greatest Hits compilations. My knowledge of Queen albums as they were released is a very recent understanding, except for the couple of albums that my dad has that I grew up listening to. A Night At The Opera is one of them. I kind of feel like I have to explain why I haven't ranked this album higher. It works really well as a unit, it's full of really great songs, and I've listened to it more than probably any other album in the world. The only reason that I ranked this as low as I did is because I can tell you the individual names of songs on this album, which means that sometimes, sometimes, I listen to the songs separately. On the other two, I either don't know the individual track titles, or I never listen to them alone. A Night At The Opera goes in so many directions, the songs are so different from each other, but they do have kind of a vaudeville string holding them all together. Lots of people have this album, since it brought the world Bohemian Rhapsody, but that's one of my least favorite songs on the album. And I do think it's a great song. My favorite is Death on Two Legs, the piano intro is such great contrast to the totally diesel guitar and drums in the rest of the song. I love the surprise ukelele song, Good Company. I'm very fond of the 2 ballads, '39 and the Prophet's Song. I remember sitting with a discman, listening to the Prophet's Song over and over, writing the words down. (I later found the CD case and the lyric book within. Curse you, 6-disc changer cartridges! I never know about the CD cases!) I'm In Love With My Car is really different from most of their other songs (and is sung by the drummer!) And their version of God Save The Queen is really beautiful and simple. I really love this album. If I were the tattoo-getting sort, I'd seriously consider the cover art for a design. Great, great album.

Will- you probably know enough of the songs on this album just from knowing me and hanging out with me for years, so you could certainly make it through. Queen will never be your favorite band, but I think if you listened to it a few times, you'd find that you liked it more than you expected to.
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(no subject) [Jun. 9th, 2009|06:34 pm]
#4 Traveling Wilburys- Vol. 1. When you look up the term "supergroup," there is a picture of the Traveling Wilburys. The group is composed of George Harrison (of the Beatles), Jeff Lynne (of ELO), Roy Orbison (of... Roy Orbison), Tom Petty (of the himself and the Heartbreakers), and Bob Dylan (BOB DYLAN.) They recorded the album in 10 glorious days. The album is outstanding. Their second album, Vol. 3, was recorded after Roy Orbison died. It's also good, but not as good. When I was making mix tapes to take to Kenya, I just put the whole album on a tape instead of trying to pick favorite songs. (This is true of #3-1 on my list, also.) They're not the flashiest of bands, but everyone who has heard of them seems to love them. They were definitely just jamming when they wrote their songs, which makes the lyrics not at all pretentious and extra-fun. The album is just so... comfortable. It's like cold beer in the shade on a hot day. It's like board game night with your friends. It's like pizza for breakfast. I can't pick a favorite, I love all the songs. I love hearing all of their voices individually. This album is SO GOOD. So good. Every song. So good.

Will- Everyone would like this album, so you should, too. I think that it wouldn't fit in with the rest of your taste especially well, but I think you would end up liking it a lot.

So good.
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Wait for it- [Jun. 8th, 2009|10:34 pm]
#5 The Rocky Horror Picture Show- The Soundtrack. This album is extremely special to me. I remember very clearly the first time I heard it. I was sitting at dinner when we lived in Tokyo, my family was all eating together, and my mom said the word "anticipation." My father dashed into the living room and put on the Rocky Horror Picture Show soundtrack so that he could hear "I see you shiver. With antici-












pation." I was immediately hooked. (Also, kudos to my dad for 1- owning the CD, and 2- not being afraid to play it for his 10-, 8-, and 7-year-old children.) I listened to the soundtrack constantly after this. I had no idea that it was for a movie, or that I would ever be able to see that movie, and I didn't do the greatest job of understanding what was going on in the songs, which is probably ok, since I was 10. I do remember finding the CD case and being absolutely scandalized by some of the pictures on it at about age 12. (Our CDs all lived in 6-disc cartridges rather than alone in their cases, so I had to go actively looking for it to see it.) It was the first musical I listened to that wasn't in the Sound of Music vein. While the movie is hardly a cinematic masterpiece and the singing is not the greatest conceivable, it has a very very special place in my heart. When we moved back to the States, we lived with family friends (the Smits!) for about 3 months while our house was being renovated. They had a recording of the movie WITH THE PEOPLE IN FRONT ACTING IT OUT. So the first way I ever saw it, although on film, was with the whole experience, rather than just the movie. For my (16th?) birthday a bunch of my friends and I went and saw it live for the first time at the Rialto, which turned into a pretty regular affair through my high school years. I have so many items of underclothing that I bought specifically to wear to Rocky. I have plenty of friends who have been much more involved in the show, including my brother, who was (and occasionally still is) a cast member, but I feel my relationship with the show is much older than most. It may be a milder love affair, but it's a pretty solid one. Anyway, this album is on my list independent of my love of the movie. If there were no movie, just the soundtrack, I would still be very, very fond of this album. Favorite track: Sweet Transvestite.

Will- if you don't like this, we're not friends any more. If you prefer the soundtrack to the Broadway stage show, I will understand, but I will also be sad.
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What a weekend. [Jun. 7th, 2009|12:41 pm]
Friday night I went to a concert in Chapel Hill. I saw Midtown Dickens, Paleface, and Holy Ghost Tent Revival. I'm going to try and keep my rhapsody short, since I'm wearing myself out writing about albums all the time and reading other people's entries, but the show was fantastic.

I bought the Midtown Dickens' CD- they were brilliant. Will- one of the singers might be the girl of your dreams. When I got there, she was playing accordion. The third or so song that they did, she put it down and picked up a trombone. And she sang and played... banjo, maybe? And guitar? And she was really cute. Anyway, they were great. They played the largest variety of instruments I've ever seen for a 5-person band, and the 2 men didn't even change instruments, they stayed stuck to the mandolin and upright bass. It was like watching my friends play Rock Band. Every time the song changed, people got up and rotated instruments. I've never seen the drummer get up and pick up another instrument for a song, and one of the singers stand in on drums! And they played the spoons and this thing that I don't know the name for, and trumpets, and guitars, and banjos, and a saw with a string bow. Wow. They had a very folksy sound, which I love, and the singers were wonderful. I'll have to pay attention to them in the future.

Paleface was pretty good. My lack of enthusiasm is really more because their sound didn't fit as well to my tastes as the other 2 bands. I will say that for 2 people, they put out a LOT of sound. And they were the second band of the night with a female drummer, that is nice to see from time to time. She kind of looked like Amy Sedaris, which made me fond of her. They were great, just not my favorite.

Holy Ghost Tent Revival blew me away. There were like 6 of them on stage (maybe only 5?), and they were a sweaty, bleeding mess by the end of it. They were AMAZING. Their sound was really polished. They were really cranking it out, but if I closed my eyes, I could believe that it was a studio recording, almost, for how well balanced and executed it was. They had so much energy and were musically very, very good. They're playing on Thursday at Blind Tiger in Greensboro and on Friday at Double Door Inn in Charlotte, if you read this and live close to either of those, HIGHLY recommend seeing them. They'll be back in Raleigh on the 25th, I will try to see them again. I tried to buy the CD, but they were sold out. Seriously, go see them if you can. So good.


And then yesterday I went to Kings Dominion for my company's family day. It rocked the pants off of last year's family day picnic in a park. I hadn't been to an amusement park since we went to Carowinds one summer in college, so I was way overdue for some rollercoasters. Kings Dominion is my favorite amusement park I've been to so far, but I'm basing that off of a fairly short list of places. They have a new ride, the Dominator, which I loved. Bevin and James went with me (<3 <3 thanks guys!) and we had a blast. We were worn-out mofos by the end of the night. The weather was perfect and the lines were surprisingly short. The Volcano was the only one that took a long time to wait for, really. I like the Volcano, but passed on a second trip through it, the blast-off portion was a bit more than I could take late in the day. I'm wussing out a little in my old age- I didn't want to do the Drop Tower or the Sky Flyer. Those free-falls freak me out a little. I think just accepting that is the right step for me. I've done both in the past, I know I can make it through, but the anticipation of it is a little too much for me, or at least it was yesterday. Anyway, I'm really worn out and tired, but had a wonderful weekend.
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