'Backslider' by Toadies

I've given up on a recording a better take than this, at least on video, so we'll all just have to learn to live with the vocal performance, okay people?!

This one is my own little hybrid beast. (much as most of my covers tend to fare) The original guitar line for this song is just notes, no chords, and relies on the bass and drums to add emphasis. I was, therefore, forced to retool it for solo perform-ability.

It's a bugger of a song too. Between the cheaty little F-sharp move I came up with for the verse lick and the impossibly high, while simultaneously grating vocals, it's all just a little too much for me. And that's why I love it.

Return of the Quotes

Some of you, I'm sure, will remember those halcyon days of fitful youth that flitted by on wings of Roy's-own ever-growing, long-ass list of uncited, author-less quotations -- whose origins only he might say. Well what you didn't know, I'm sure, is though that list receded into dark places of shadowy recess where public eyes durst not go, it yet survived and indeed proliferated.

I've amended it, maintained it, pruned it for the occasional dud, and here, today, I bring her home to hearth and family. I give to you my personal collection of...

Quotations Anonymous

Quotations Anonymous

"Rejection sucks, regardless of the quality of the individual who's doing the rejecting."

"I'm drunk, but curious if you've ever measured ur penis? If so, how long we talking?"

"[...]without exposition and backstory, [these characters] feel as though they were randomly tossed into an anime story-generating machine."

"Your font is not your personality."

"There is no reason to believe whatsoever that this is anything other than a failure of our infrastructure."

"Bush expressed profound reverence for God while his policies massacred God's creation and creatures with the utmost irreverence."

"I don't understand. Lakes have beaches."

"These people, they live in a completely different world than the one with air, and ground, and stuff."

"A sickness known as hate; not a virus, not a microbe, not a germ, but a sickness nonetheless; highly contagious, deadly in its effects. Don't look for it in the Twilight Zone. Look for it in a mirror. Look for it before the light goes out altogether."

"Anyone on CourtTV is worthy of the lake of fire."

"We like democracy in strategically irrelevant countries."

"Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the majority, dismissed the idea that the right of association requires a process by which voters have a meaningful opportunity to affect an election’s outcome."

"To say that these reporters are too focused on covering the horserace is really an insult to sports reporting."

"How do you defend yourself against these anonymous people who've clearly... typed shit up and hit send?"

"Where have all the good men gone; And where are all the gods? Where's the street-wise Hercules to fight the rising odds?"

"There is no difference between those who wear a suicide suit and a diplomat's suit. Both are carrying out [...] war crimes and we should exact the full price not only from the minor squads in the field but also from those who send them."

"The story of a Great Flood sent by a deity or deities to destroy civilization as an act of divine retribution is a widespread theme[...]"

"If you feel that you can't go on
because all of your hope is gone
And your life is filled with much confusion
Until happiness is just an illusion
And your world around is crumbling down
Darlin, reach out"

"Vacated and remanded."

"The pre-dawn blast on Thursday, caused by a crude bomb made from low-grade explosives, damaged the recruiting station but caused no injuries. That station, like others, has been the target of protests against the U.S.-led war in Iraq."

"Because, to be honest, it gets hard to feel good a lot of the time. It seems to be getting harder as time goes on. I guess I didn’t figure it would be so hard for so long when I quit college and decided to follow my creative urges. I didn’t figure that people would lose faith in Community and fall into a perpetual endgame of post-apocopytical hedonism without the apocolypse."

"[L]ove don't make things nice - it ruins everything. It breaks your heart. It makes things a mess. We aren't here to make things perfect. The snowflakes are perfect. The stars are perfect. Not us. Not us! We are here to ruin ourselves and to break our hearts and love the wrong people and die."

"It is clear to me now that the Republic no longer functions. I pray you will bring sanity and compassion back to the Senate."

"[...]the first miracle in Jesus's story is that anyone believed him."

"Of course, in the wild, the gorilla would be at risk to be murdered -- by humans. That’s why they have to be caged -- by other humans. Those appear to be the options - prison or death. Not much of a choice. Humanity sucks."

"[...W]hy, I ask myself, why have I put up with you? I can't imagine but now I know. Fear. Yellow freakin' fear. I've been too chicken shit afraid to live my life so I sold it to you for three hundred freakin' dollars a week! You're lucky I don't kill you! You're lucky I don't rip your freakin' throat out! But I'm not going to and maybe you're not so lucky at that. 'Cause I'm gonna leave you here, [...] and what could be worse than that?"

"Vanity of vanities, [...] vanity of vanities; all is vanity."

"The aim has now become to reduce all Americans to the compulsive, bloodless dimensions of a guy named Joe."

"Do not lay down any rules beyond what I appointed you, and do not give a law like the lawgiver lest you be constrained by it."

"Kill everyone! God will know his own!"

"Until I met you I was dead. An impotent corpse existing behind a false guise of life. A life in which I did nothing real. Day to day I merely went through the motions of living, as if I were a zombie. And I always had the feeling as if I were gradually dying. If I'm condemned to go back to that, then I'd rather..."

"My heart always told me that people are inherently good. My experience suggests otherwise."

"I don't want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don't want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don't want to do that. So, my father's in the army; he wants me to join, but I can't work for that corporation. So what I've been doing lately is kickboxing."

"We are plunged into an existence fantastic to the point of nightmare, and however hard we rationalize, or however firm our religious faith, however closely we dog the heels of science or wheel among the starts of mysticism, we can not really make head or tail of it.

"I saw God the other day, by the river on a rainy afternoon. He helped a kitten that was left all alone. It's a god that only I can see. A black-winged angel that came down from the heavens just for me."

"I am Shiva, god of death."

"So if, in the future, we all find ourselves playing 'Captain Bland's Monotonous Adventure' in what moments we can spare between toiling in the Microsoft overmind's off-world mining complex then I want you to know that I fucking called it."

"If it helps your decision: I'd be considerably less likely to end my own life if you said yes."

"I've got to be crazy. I'm on a pilgrimage to see a moose."

"[...R]enounce the life that perishes, and dismiss from your mind mortal considerations, and throw off the burdens of human existence, and lay aside your weak nature, and put away your perplexities, and hasten to escape from these times. For worse evils are still to come than those you have seen happen."

"We X-Nauts are not all rainbows and lollipops, I assure you. We're quite nasty."

"Just give up and admit you're an asshole. You would be in some good company."

"You can make your own liquid pretentiousness at home by burning Limp Bizkit merchandise until Limp Bizkit start crying, then mixing their tears with the ashes."

"[T]here is no straightforward career path to becoming an astronaut, or indeed to becoming Gordon Freeman."

"There is no moral to this story, that I can see. Carry on with your lives."

"A soldier must stop a swarm of beetles that turn humans into zombies."


"[I]t would be a rare political figure who would appoint someone he didn't believe to be loyal [to his interests], and that is true from the President of the United States to the Mayor of the smallest hamlet[.]"

"Why switch horsemen mid-apocolypse?"

"Let the communion begin. Burn this oil, it is my body. Shoot up this dope, it is my blood."

"Having no personal loan accounts appearing on the credit bureau report, or if they are present but are closed [...], is a slightly higher risk compared to currently having an installment loan and making payments on it."

"Try waking up and enjoying the life you've chosen - okay - instead of calling your travel agent and getting the big 'budget deal.' It's a t-shirt nirvana."

"There always is hope. But you may not feel that hope until you receive effective treatment for any disorder that you might have."

"Zauling. Is there a word 'zauling?' If there is what does it mean? If there isn't what does it mean? Perhaps both, maybe neither. What do I mean by the word 'mean'? What do I mean by the word 'word'? What do I mean by 'what do I mean'? What do I mean by 'do' and what do I do by 'mean'? And what do I do by do by do and what do I mean by wasting your time like this?"

"Do not panic yourselves! This is just a dream... that we are all having... awake!"

"Meanwhile, later yesterday afternoon..."

"Real racism is quiet; it's subtle[...]; there's disclaimers like: 'Dude, you know I'm not racist... But, uh, these [insert group name],' followed by fucked-up conversation."

"For reasons that are difficult to explain, I hated the guy instinctively. With his floppy dyed blonde hair and artsy glasses [...] he looked like the sort of person who goes up to people and says "I'm filming a documentary." "

"Look, your opinions mean nothing. Your forums mean nothing. You're not influencing anybody. You're not some blogging superstar. You're a lonely loser whose only friend is a flickering screen with pixelated text."

"Luckily, it's been well established that time is not a fixed construct."

"Action Bastard, I neeeeed you."

"Watch what you say or they'll be calling you a radical; a liberal; fanatical; criminal. Won't you sign up your name? We'd like to feel you're acceptable; respectable; presentable; a vegetable."

"What did you think? ...TV turned a whole generation of girls into sleazy whores? That we normalized promiscuous behavior to the point where college chicks would get naked for millions of masturbating men for the price of a truckers' hat? Come on, guys. Of course it's hypnosis."

"'As iron sharpens iron so man sharpens another man.' Then I realized - Proverbs 27:17 - that's you and me. You showed me the way. [...] No more hate. [...] You're all angels sent to test me. I see that now. It was all a test. Don't you see I'm not afraid. I'm not afraid anymore. I'm not afraid of death. I'm not afraid of anything. I'm free."

"Still, it's funny -- when I heard about non-participatory democracy, I assumed they meant the voters and not the politicians."

"ActionScript is based on JavaScript (ECMAScript) which is based on Java which is based on C++ which is based on C which is based on B, which is a version of BCPL, ... assembler ... machine code ... swapping wires in a switchboard ... removing/inserting wooden pegs in a wheel ..."

"If this is your god you have a severe ontological crisis."

"Boo-hoo, I have fewer melanopsin proteins than regular people."

"I think I might be gay. I saw this penis on the internet today and I thought to myself, "Well that's... that's just fine." "

"You may not know me but I have twelve billion dollars here that says you'll vote for me regardless."

"But where are the clowns? Send in the clowns. Don't bother, they're here."

"We have a motion to fuck these rules. Can we have a second? Motion carried. Fuck you."

"Perhaps this is what I've longed for ever since that day: the destruction and loss of everything. [...] Destruction always comes before creation. And for that goal, even my own conscience must be cast aside. The only path left to me is straight ahead. Now then..."

"'Normal' is getting dressed in clothes that you buy for work and driving through traffic in a car - that you are still paying for - in order to get to the job you need to pay for the clothes, and the car, and the house you leave vacant all day so you can afford to live in it."

"Is your employment prospect so bleak that you actually consider running away and having rest stop sex to pay your bills?"

"Are you sure you weren't implanted with virtual memories?"

"If Miley Cyrus has a future in music, music is dead to me."

"Lord, as I must do each week let me repeat things over and over as though as to bore everyone and fill up an hour. Whoa, you're a holy, holy, holy guy lord. You are ten pounds of holy in a five pound bag. [...] Lord, let us read from the epistle of the apostle, Romans 7, Leviticus 3, paragraph 9, section 8, 25 or 6 to 4, Chicago: 7, St. Louis: 2, bottom of the eighth, runners at the corners."

"I've spent all my life thinking and I'm tired of it, I want to see results."

"[...]Fire is bright. Fire is clean; efficient and divine."

"I'm done with subtext. Subtext has ruined me."

"And why would you want to do anything for fans? [...] Fans are clingy complaining dipshits who will never ever be grateful for any concession you make. The moment you shut out their shrill tremulous voices the happier you'll be for it."

"Oh, well, isn't this new and different."

"Vision? What do you know about my vision? My vision would turn your world upside-down, tear asunder your illusions, and send the sanctuary of your own ignorance crashing down around you. Now ask yourself, are you really ready to see that vision?"

"Everybody on Earth uses three percent of their brain; three to five percent. That's why they're there. When you use more than five percent of your brain you don't want to be on Earth, believe me."

"Fear's like a giant fog. It sits on your brain and blocks everything. Real feelings, true happiness, real joy: They can't get through that fog. But, you lift it - and buddy - you're in for the ride of your life."

"Please remain seated until your life has come to a full and complete stop."

"You've got to pick your battles, I guess -- and its probably easier to readjust my circadian rhythm than it would be to deprogram myself of the irrational guilt."

"What the people need is the truth. And not the pretty truth: The horrible, awful, terrible truth that hurts peoples' feelings. The truth that makes people get up and do something."

"I have been a fool for lesser things."

"iraq ... or mcdonald's ... same difference"

"You would've kissed her too. [...] She was naked and all... articulate."

"Fuck off, all debts are paid."

"If it's childish to believe in this, so be it. I'd rather be considered a child than follow a doctrine of cynicism, chaos... apathy."

"Who are we to pass through you?"

"Dear Sir, The six o'clock news is an insult to my intelligence and a disgrace to television. I am not going to watch the show anymore, and neither are my mommy and daddy."

"...Slavery, stitched into the fabric of my clothes."

"I like killing people as much as the next guy, but I signed up to kill the bad ones. Health clinics, trade unionists, journalists, agricultural co-ops, Catholic liberation theologians, impoverished Colombian coffee farmers — these are the barbarians, the depraved opponents of civilization? We turned Central America into a fucking graveyard. Whoever momentarily interrupts the accumulation of our wealth, we pulverize. I’m just not feeling good about that anymore, sir."

"Tooth and bone? Unimpressive. I have left these things."

"So if there's a puddle and it has wealth then the moon makes my heart flutter in the ocean?"

"You don’t want to get mixed up with a guy like me. I’m a loner, Dottie; a rebel."

"I'd rather risk everything on an unlikely fantasy than fester in the image of despair."

"Would it be impolite at this point in the conversation to just run away from you?"

"You so casually say some terrible things too, don't you?"

"There's no such thing [as a broken heart.] That's just a way of describing one of life's little disappointments that comes close to killing you."

"Two eggs do not get cooked as thoroughly in ten minutes as one does, so either let it sit longer or enjoy less-cooked eggs."

"[...Y]ou suck beyond any worldly definition of the word. You have actually created, and are now on a whole new level of inter-dimensional suck! That's how much you suck!"

"I'm no expert here but it seems to me that the pursuit of a mythic destiny isn't something you need to get [time] off a seven dollar an hour job in order to do."

"Maybe this game is just a really complex gun loading simulator."

"...That's life on the Hellmouth."

"There was blood in the water. You all smelled it. I just did something about it."

"Alphabetizing is offensive to me. Order is offensive. It implies that people know what they deserve. They don't. None of us know what we deserve in the slightest. Whether we deserve to be rewarded or punished -- it's our own hubris that takes us down that path."

"Aim to be Hokage and train your asses off."

"[...]I'll learn to fix stuff if you will teach me how to love, and God will radiate out from within us instead of this bullshit from above."

"The people you are referring to are 'hipsters.' They walk slowly because they 'got no place to be, man.'"

"[...]Meanwhile the humans, with their plebeian minds have brought us a truly demonic concept: mass production."

"I'm not at all impressed with a young plumper flicking his phone and thumbing a few choice buttons-are you? I would think not."

"He's not ranting on a street corner about the horribleness of dog poop, but he's close."

"My self-opinion is decided by fiat, not consensus, and I'm sorry, but the polls are closed and I'm afraid you're no longer eligible to vote."

"Press X to make the world safe for democracy."

"That's me as a vampire? I'm so evil and skanky! And I think I'm kind of gay."

"[...B]y this point I think we can all guess, with some accuracy, the amount of time remaining before the next interval in which Roy will feel the need to get in a van and drive the hell away from his life and everything he knows."

"I am the being that you call "the world." Or also, "The Universe." Or "God," or "the Truth." Or "Whole." Or "One." And, I am "you." Welcome, poor fool, ignorant of your own limits."

"[...]sometimes I would expostulate with myself why Providence should thus compleatly ruine its creatures and render them so absolutely miserable, so without help abandon'd, so entirely depress'd that it could hardly be rational to be thankful for such a life."

"[...]people with a messed up ego can do these mental gymnastics to convince themselves they're awesome when really they're just douchebags."

"As to the crimes they were guilty of towards one another, I had nothing to do with them; they were national, and I ought to leave them to the justice of God, who is the Governour of nations and knows how by national punishments to make a just retribution for national offences, and to bring publick judgments upon those who offend in a publick manner, by such ways as best pleases Him."

"[...]I believe the time has finally arrived for me to stop accumulating experiences and start living."

"Accommodate no one."

"Now, remember when we said there was no future? Well, this is it."

"Would you say that the one of your dreams got in you and ripped out the seams? That's what I'd say."

"I'm shit. You're shit. The world is shit. And if you're sitting there thinking, "Yes, it's true. Everyone is shit except me," then you're a double bacon shit with large fries, Mr. Shitface."

"As long as he could remember, he had never been responsible to anyone. The moment a situation became so that it exacted something of him, he rebelled. That was the way he lived; he passed his days trying to defeat or gratify powerful impulses in a world he feared."

"I thought what I'd do was, I'd pretend I was one of those deaf-mutes. That way I wouldn't have to have any goddam stupid useless conversations with anybody."

"Pretty soon you get so you can't hope for nothing. You just keep moving all the time, doing what other folks say. You ain't a man no more. You just work day in and day out so the world can roll on and other people can live."

"[..T]he civilization which had given birth to Bigger contained no spiritual sustenance, had created no culture which could hold and claim his allegiance and faith, had sensitized him and left him stranded, a free agent to roam the streets of our cities, a hot and whirling vortex of undisciplined an unchannelized impulses."

"["...A]ll political power is inherent in the people, and all free governments are founded on their authority and instituted for their benefit; and that they have at all times an undeniable and indefeasible right to alter their form of government in such a manner as they may think expedient." Under that gospel, the citizen who thinks he sees that the commonwealth's political clothes are worn out, and yet holds his peace and does not agitate for a new suit, is disloyal; he is a traitor. That he may be the only one who thinks he sees this decay, does not excuse him; it is his duty to agitate any way, and it is the duty of the others to vote him down if they do not see the matter as he does."

"Your video will start in NaN."

"Dear Mommy and Daddy. I am running away. I am sorry, but I can no longer handle the monotony of middle-class life. Everyone at school is a fucking idiot, and if one more person talked to me about that Susan Boyle performance of Les Miserables, I was going to puke my balls out through my mouth. I love you all, but I have to move on. I'm going to Somalia to be a pirate."

"Lord, we cleared this land, we plowed it, sowed it, and harvested; we cooked the harvest... It wouldn't be here, we wouldn't be eating it if we hadn't done it all ourselves. We worked dog-bone hard for every crumb and morsel but we thank you just the same anyway Lord for this food we're about to eat, Amen."

"While I have yet to find the sense of self and inner peace that might imbue me with the strength required to restrain the lustful passions of my woeful talent, I can at least envision the day whereupon I shall."

"Like so many Americans, she was trying to construct a life that made sense from things she found in gift shops."

"Stop, in the name of all that which does not suck!"

"Seems the only thing in this world that is constantly in fashion is one's own insecurity, and in that respect I am happily out of date. ...And I'm not buying the upgrade, fuckers."

"To trust the official tally, in other words, you must believe that thousands of rural Ohioans voted for president Bush AND gay marriage."

"Jesus, Lord, protector of all that is good and holy, deliver me from fat people in short pants."

"[...W]hoever could make two ears of corn, or two blades of grass, to grow upon a spot of ground where only one grew before, would deserve better of mankind, and do more essential service to his country, than the whole race of politicians put together."

"Hey, I've been to West Virginia. Be glad you live on this side of the culture warp."

"O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you?"

"[...R]ight now half of America is insanely calling socialized medicine a government plot to destroy freedom. Isn't socialized medicine something you boomers desperately wanted? Couldn't you have created a world where it would be greeted with joy, and not suspicion? How did you fuck things up so badly, where people helping each other is perceived as some kind of government plot equivalent to the nazis?"

"My own experience tells me that people are willing to sacrifice individuality for comfort and familiarity. And in his autobiography, Wendy's founder Dave Thomas agrees."

"Unless this is a clever insult."

"It may not always happen that our soldiers are citizens, and the multitude of a body of reasonable men; virtue, as I have already remarked, is not hereditary, neither is it perpetual."

"O! ye that love mankind! Ye that dare oppose not only the tyranny but the tyrant, stand forth!"

"People have been telling me the world is going to end since I was a child. And much to my surprise and disappointment, the world is still here."

"This appeared as a moral dilemma 'cause at first it was weird, though I swore to eliminate the worst of the plague that devoured humanity. It's true, I was vague on the how, so how can it be that you have shown me the light?"

"This is not a bootable disk. This is not my bootable wife."

"You just listen to the ol' Pork Chop Express here now, and take his advice on a dark and stormy night when the lightning's crashing and the thunder's rolling and the rain's coming down in sheets thick as lead. Just remember what old Jack Burton does when the earth quakes and the poison arrows fall from the sky and the pillars of heaven shake. Yeah, Jack Burton just looks that big old storm right square in the eye and he says, "Give me your best shot, pal. I can take it." "

"[...]it don't make no difference whether you do right or wrong, a person's conscience ain't got no sense, and just goes for him anyway. If I had a yaller dog that didn't know no more than a person's conscience does, I would pison him. It takes up more room than all the rest of a person's insides, and yet ain't no good, nohow."

"[...]I will be his elder brother, and care for him and watch over him; and whoso would shame him or do him hurt, may order his shroud, for though I be burnt for it he shall need it!"

"Escape? Spare thyself discomfort, an that is all that troubles thee. For Miles Hendon is master of Hendon Hall and all its belongings. He will remain -- doubt it not."

"Dear diary, My teen angst has a body count."

"Taste is a matter of taste, obviously."

"The whole prospect of [seeing cartoon boobs] was like some kind of cryptozoological thing."

"'The Time Machine' isn't a bad book, it just happens to start out with the trammels of recondite fecundity."

"You couldn't pour pee out of a boot if the directions were on the heel."

"Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will. Lukewarm acceptance is much more bewildering than outright rejection."

"[...T]hat the present order of things was not to be taken for granted, that it presupposed a certain harmony between the world and the guardians of culture, that this harmony could always be disrupted, and that world history taken as a whole by no means furthered what was desirable, rational, and beautiful in the life of man, but at best only occasionally tolerated it as an exception -- all this they did not realize."

"Serenely let us move to distant places
And let no sentiments of home detain us.
The Cosmic Spirit seeks not to restrain us
But lifts us stage by stage to wider spaces."

"But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men's matters.

"I kept waiting for truth and right to win and then somebody new would knock truth and right right on its ass."

"Fuck oblivion."

"Mata baka ga fueta."

"What the fuck difference does it make if it works or not? Its chief value is to deter. By the time it goes into action it has already failed."

"It's a zodiac animal transformation home comedy!"

"Never be mean in anything; never be false; never be cruel. Avoid these three vices[...] and I can always be hopeful of you."

"That's just 'cause they don't know how to close. But their ability to open is fucking heroic."

"I don't spend much time keeping track of the world and can't see that it would change anything if I did. I mind my own business. What's important I hear about."

"I was always treated as if I had insisted on being born, in opposition to the dictates of reason, religion, and morality, and against the dissuading arguments of my best friends."

"Heaven knows we need never be ashamed of our tears, for they are rain upon the blinding dust of earth, overlaying our hard hearts."

"I can't go on -- so I will."

"Oh my god, lift me up out of this illusion, lord. Heal my perception that I may know only reality and only you."

"There are many pleasant fictions of the law in constant operation, but not one so pleasant or practically humorous as that which supposes every man to be of equal value in its impartial eye, and the benefits of all laws to be equally attainable by all men, without the smallest reference to the furniture of their pockets."

"All the news that fits in a pie chart."

"If I had a secret that I didn't want anyone to know, I wonder if the speed at which the world turns would change."

"...the internet, ladies and gentleman."

"It was always mañana. For the next week that was all I heard -- mañana, a lovely word and one that probably means heaven."

"[...]a "white man" disillusioned."

"But maybe he's only a little crazy, like painters, or composers, or some of those men in Washington."

"Date of Birth: As old as my tongue and a little bit older than my teeth."

"Here come the Earth intruders. There'll be no resistance. We are the animators. Necessary voodoo."

"And so 1213 became the king of chocolate land. Hail his milky wisdom."

"Hana tul set net tasut."

"Massugu jibun no kotoba wa magenai... Sore ga watashi no nindo dakara."

"Any one else read anything into the fact that 'evian' is 'naive' spelled backwards?"

"[...W]hen we're not propping up fascist dictators like Pinochet, Somoza, Noriega, Duvalier, Trujillo, and Marcos, we are a true symbol of freedom."

"Men who look on nature, and their fellow-men, and cry that all is dark and gloomy, are in the right; but the sombre colours are reflections from their own jaundiced eyes and hearts. The real hues are delicate, and need a clearer vision."

"...[I] just like to dig an esoteric hole up front to test myself. ...might have overshot."

"Using Google Instant can save 2-5 seconds per search. If everyone uses Google Instant globally, we estimate this will save more than 3.5 billion seconds a day. That’s 11 hours saved every second."

"He is an honorable, obstinate, truthful, high-spirited, intensely prejudiced, perfectly unreasonable man."

"You don't even know anything about christianity!"
"I know enough to exploit it."

"Then I was right. Job has all his children killed and Michael Bay gets to keep making movies. There is no God.

"Getting picked last for dodgeball: That sucks. Getting picked last for the fate of the world: That's a real kick in the dick."

"Telescopic Philanthropy"

"If you had the abilities of all the great men, past and present, you could do nothing well, without sincerely meaning it, and setting about it. If you entertain the supposition that any real success, in great things or in small, ever was or could be, ever will or can be, wrested from Fortune by fits and starts, leave that wrong idea here[.]"

"I expect a Judgment. On the day of Judgment. And shall then confer estates."

"[O]ne should always support the independents, at least until they start making money. (...the soul-less sell-out fucks!)"

"How does my gun know the emotional availability of the guy I'm pointing at?"

"Isn't your drill the one that will pierce the heavens, the earth, and through to tomorrow?"

"Listen, [...] don't forget. Believe in yourself. Not you, who believes in me. Not me, who believes in you. Believe in you, who believes in yourself!"

"I am quite sure, if you will let me say so, that the object of your choice would greatly prefer to follow your fortunes far and wide, however moderate or poor, and see you happy, doing your duty and pursuing your chosen way; than to have the hope of being, or even to be, very rich with you (if such a thing were possible), at the cost of dragging years of procrastination and anxiety, and of your indifference to other aims."

"Will my last breath be a yawn?"

"Time is no object here. We never know what o'clock it is, and we never care. Not the way to get on in life, you'll tell me? Certainly. But we don't get on in life. We don't pretend to do it."

"Dead! Dead, your Majesty. Dead, my lords and gentlemen. Dead, Right Reverends and Wrong Reverends of every order. Dead, men and women, born with Heavenly compassion in your hearts. And dying thus around us every day."

Retrospect: Toadies at The Magic Stick

To those of my detractors who may say, "At age 29, 5'7", and 135lbs, Roy is too old, too small, and too skinny to mosh," I can only reply by screaming, "I find a window in the kitchen, and I let myself in..." whilst barreling 'cross the room, shoulder lowered at unsuspecting rib cage.

The Toadies concert last night at The Magic Stick was absolutely boffo baby! I wear my scraped Achilles tendons and bruised forearms with a glowing pride and great personal satisfaction! I haven't been to a concert so damned good in... ever. So let's get to it:

Despite my deep satisfaction with the evening's entertainment I can't but be harsh with the local opening band, whoever they were. They lowered the bar substantially at the show's onset with a barrage of, albeit ably-performed, light-rock schlock more suited to an Emily Osment concert than a deep, down, dirty, 90's grunge experience like the Toadies. (And if you don't get the 'Emily Osment' reference, Wikipedia that shit -- I'm proud of it.) Perhaps they were simply out of place, and suffered for it; but we, the crowd, suffered more, through an entire set's worth of musical predictability. The songs were simple, unlayered, open-chord 'meh,' relying wholly upon the lead singer's vocals - and perhaps a popularity amongst teenage girls - to interest the audience; which they did not.

American Idol: yes. Toadies concert: no.

The real opening act - the touring opening act - came on stage as 'Gringo Star,' and proceeded to kick ass for an hour or so. Starting off with their highly palatable single, "All Y'all," Gringo Star didn't really fit the grunge, 90's mold laid down by the Toadies either. But they deftly overcame the natural affinities and discriminations of the crowd with a historically relevant, vocally cultured sound and brand of American music that I, at first, find hard to categorize. ...That and a great quantity of sweat sprayed o'er stage by a shaggy, profusely perspiring, guitarist.

I pause here to say: It's nice to go to a show of this caliber and not be force-fed the genre and sub-genre of the lead act all night in the form of carbon-copy opening performers. I appreciate the variety. May this trend continue.

Every man in Gringo Star served as a vocalist of some measure and all passed the performance by perpetually passing their instruments off to one another: swapping drummers, keyboardists, guitars and vocal duties as was their wont. You've got to be impressed by a rotating band! All the moreso when they sound as good as these guys.

In describing Gringo Star's sound I can't avoid that glaringly obvious reference, try though I might to protect my ever-faltering self-image as word-smith. They really do sound like an early era Beatles, with hints of 50's beach rock, Van Morrison's jazz, and modern lo-fi punk. But whatever you call it, call it "good," because that's what it is and that's what it was last night.


But onto the main act. That's what we're here for, yes? As Gringo Star retires the stage to a hail of cheers and applause; as I retire to The Magic Stick's outdoor, rooftop seating for a breather and a beer, an anticipatory crowd tightens and throngs at stage's edge. Sound check... "Randall!"

The Toadies opened with a crowd-pleasing performance of "Happyface" off their '94 album 'Rubberneck,' reminding us, lest there was ever any doubt, just what these guys do for a living: growling, squealing, disharmonic, minor-chord beauty. (And heavily-veiled songs about stalker-rapists.)

In the interests of fair disclosure I should say that Toadies ranks in my top five all-time bands. The energy inherent to the music, placed alongside my personal history with their mid-nineties catalogue: those youthful memories of frothing teen angst, my early high school years; it all resounds of a time in my life that was...

Really kind of horrible, actually.

Despite that, the Toadies have never ceased to sate my sensibilities, nor to answer any call I might sound for a thoughtfully raging, musical psychopathy. This is grunge, hardcore, and in its most purely distilled state.

But I'm maybe making them out to be heavier than I should. For you can certainly bang your head to the Toadies, but it isn't head-banger music. And yes, I found many an opportunity to present the two-fingered salute at their show last night; but you might as often have found me, eyes closed, listening intently, picking apart the subtleties of thoughtfully constructed overlapping guitar riffs, or taking note of the Toadies' trademark shifting time-signatures. Mostly though, you would have found me making friends and dodging elbows in the mosh pit. (...At least when not uncouthly straddling the girl in the leather jacket standing in front of me at stage's edge whenever the crowd lunged suddenly forward. "Nice to meet you," I say as my pelvis cups her ass.)

Toadies presented a number of songs off their new album, 'Feeler:' An album, I'm told, was written some decade ago but kept from the presses by evil, nasty, cold-hearted record label bastards. Feeler, in its present state is supposedly a distinct reworking of that original intellectual property, so as to avoid the aforementioned capitalist, pig-dog, swine's claims that they own it, and no one plays with their toys but them! Yeah, suck on it Interscope.

Without being further exposed to the new album's content I can say that what I heard at The Magic Stick last night was, more or less, more of the same. And we're all quite pleased at that. May the Toadies continue to epitomize grunge! They need only keep it up for another five years or so. At which point the 90's will have finally edged the 80's out, becoming a retro fad. Wherein the Toadies can again reign at the top of the charts, where they so deservingly belong to be.

DIY Street Fair

I saw two bands at the DIY Street Fair in Ferndale last night. If the DIY website is to be trusted, the name of the first band was 'Outrageous Cherry.' A particularly suggestive title considering both the drummer and bassist appear to be of fetchingly non-consensual ages.

Once you pop the fun don't stop.
(Oh, that's really bad. I actually feel ashamed.)

Then came 'Goober and the Peas.' I don't know how to feel about this one. They were an entertaining act, and yet...

The band thinks less of the crowd for showing up.

Afterwards we stopped in at a bar where they didn't serve my kind. Ordering a beer turned out to be too complex a transaction for me to complete without assistance and since no one had an abacus and there was only one copy of Lenin's summary of Hegelian dialectics to go around, I remained thirsty.

Another Goober advertises his wares.

In conclusion: Someone needs to knock Ferndale down off its high horse. And I'm just the man to do it!

Flo TV

For those so impossibly, hopelessly, helplessly addicted to the pandering, ignorance, falsehood, egotism, and slow-death of television: Now you can take your killer with you!

Durrr... I like TV!

Another 'something' for you to stare vacantly at in the public space while breathing through your mouth and failing to interact with reality. That is when you aren't breaking conversations to stare slack-jawed into your palms, while thumbing a few 'lols,' you fucking twat.


'Away' by The Toadies

[UPDATE: I've deleted this video because... I don't have to explain myself to you people.]

It's a banner day for recording. First 'I'm Impressed' by TMBG, now a mad Toadies cover!

Atop which its the first video from my new pad, as well as the first to feature the trashy little electric guitar I'm holding in stead for my sister, who will almost surely never get it back. Muahaha.

I've been training my voice up to this Toadies cover. I still have some difficulty keeping my throat open throughout the whole song to hit those highest highs, as you may or may not notice here. It's one of those performances that I can only do successfully once or twice a day. After that my larynx mumbles something derisive about the recording artist's union and walks off.

Anyway, this was the first take and the most successful. The vocals are a little back in the mix, but I'm satisfied. Note to audiophiles: The reverb heard here is natural. My new apartment has awesome acoustics. Though I admittedly didn't put them to grand use here.

And as always, watch out for white-guy knees!

'I'm Impressed' by TMBG


Ah, They Might Be Giants... When do you fail to entertain?

While I open myself to an all too obvious criticism by posting this, I do so both heedless and regardless. Here's an acoustic cover of TMBG's, 'I'm Impressed,' aided much by my present suffering under seasonal allergies. Seriously, more than one have remarked that my vocals sound better when I'm congested. If I'm ever going to make it in this business, it's going to take a lot of influenza!

Don't mind the inauspicious little coda. I'll find something better for future performances.

Touch my Muffins

I expanded my baking pedigree today when I attempted some simple from-scratch muffins. I was only planning to make a loaf of bread, but when I got to the second rising, I thought, "as long as everything's already dirty, why not use this next hour of thumb-twiddling to try something new." Those were my exact thoughts. Verbatim. Note the quotation marks.

But I quickly ran aground when I found I had no baking powder. I had baking soda on hand, but no powder. "What's the difference anyway?" I asked the internet. "Well," says the internet, "baking powder is really just baking soda, but with a palette-neutralizing acidic agent added to enable a steady release of the gases that promote rising; usually cream of tartar."

"But I don't have any cream of tartar, internet-sama. Would lemon-juice work? That's acidic. I've got that!"

"Uh, maybe."

So, I substituted 3/4 of a teaspoon of baking soda, added to the dry mix, and 1 1/2 tablespoons of lemon juice, added to the wet mix, in place of the 1 tablespoon of baking powder called for in the recipe. Then, for a filling, I threw in some raisins and brown sugar. It tasted good as a batter anyway. Let's see what we get:

In the pan.

Out of the pan.

That golden brown booty.

So we may have overshot the rising agent a tad. Still, they taste pretty good. At least my pantomime seems to think so!

I made pastry!

Was there ever any doubt?

They could be sweeter, actually. But what do I want for raisins and brown sugar? Anyway, next time we'll go 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1 tbsp lemon juice, and maybe they don't all come out looking like breast implants.

But what about the bread?

Even my bread looks sexy.

Best tasting loaf yet! Though I need to work on my shaping method. This rolling it up and tucking it under business gives the ends more lift than the middle.

That's going straight to my hips.

Space Band Live - Track 5


I'm living on 4th Street in Detroit where local artists known as 'Space Band' practice/jam/perform occasionally. Space Band is a percussion-oriented groove band that creates sound and music spontaneously using a myriad of instruments; and certain other objects that don't really qualify as instruments. I've quickly fallen in love with their music for its depth, layering, and unapologetic art.

Before I start sounding any more like some douche-critic, I'll get to the point. Last week I heard Space Band tuning up down the block, so I came sailing out of my apartment building and down the sidewalk with a Zoom H4 handheld digital recorder mounted atop a monopod in tow. I placed my recorder in an out of the way spot, sat down, and enjoyed the show. The H4 captured the performance startlingly well and after a four-hour mastering session, it sounds like absolute gold.

So: despite having yet to provide the band with a chance to vet my work, I am summarily jumping the gun and proudly presenting the world with track 5 off the album I'm calling:

'Space Band - Live From the Mothership'

Goodnight Fishes

Why, that didn't last long at all. Either the female population is getting less appealing or I'm getting wiser in my old age, because I've already closed up shop on the personals hunt. However, I couldn't leave the floor without airing some selfish commentary on my way out. (I never can.) I changed my profile title to "Nevermind." and learning from Kurt's mistake, aimed the shotgun at someone else.

My parting words follow:


I guess I'm just not cut out for the online personals scene. Honestly, the way things are going I have to wonder if I'm cut out for interaction with females at all. I don't seem to know how to talk to you. I know I'm being funny, witty, and intelligent. I try to start off on a resoundingly upbeat and positive note. Yet every attempt I make seems to end in some form of dejection.

I think my problem lies in the effort to represent myself fairly. I try to be honest and to the point with you, and you almost always recoil from it. Apparently you prefer a little more horse sh*t up front; a little more of the magic kingdom treatment when things first get started. And I suppose I must be coming off too real and uncomposed; too interested when I'm interested; too in love when I'm in love.

Therein lies your problem too: You want honesty in the long run: a truthful, straight-talking guy who won't walk around on you. But in the first instance you want someone to play a little coy; be a little aloof; make you wonder; get you excited. In other words you want a guy who'll lie to you on the first date, and be absolutely truthful by the six month anniversary. The problem with that is: most guys who will lie to you on the first date will lie to you on your wedding day and all the days thereafter. So you mostly end up picking ***holes, because ***holes are everything a girl wants, if only for the first two or three months.

No, I haven't had much luck on this site. I'd like to say that most of that is your fault. I read the ads on here and I can't believe the ignorance, simplicity, and repetition of it all. You have no idea how many of you say the exact same things in your profiles, nor how frequently what you say has absolutely no substance to it whatsoever. Otherwise at least half of you aren't really looking for anything out of these ads other than a fluff to the ego, or the sense that you're "trying" when you really aren't. And atop that a great lot of you are unabashed, outright liars, marketing yourselves in a light that couldn't be reproduced with a twenty kilo-watt bulb beaming down from a low cloud in God's heaven.

Seriously, the most physically attractive lot of you are obviously only on this site to stroke your own vanities. You give me three hollow lines of text that tell me nothing whatsoever as your description, and then pair that with eighteen pictures of cleavage, tattoos, exposed mid-riff, and bathing-beauty shots. Gee, what a great personality you've presented here. I really want to get inside your mind . By the way, is that mind of yours a 'C' cup or...? These girls are just collecting emails from horny morons as a testament to their physical dimensions. I'm sure it's a real boost to the ol' ego, ladies, but some of us are here for a reason, and you're just getting in the way.

And while I'm near the topic, what sort of double-standard is it that the women 'round here feel so free to post shots looking confirmedly down their push-up-bras, but meanwhile deride any man who dares post a picture displaying more than his hair and teeth? So wait: you can show me the tattoo that starts at the bottom of your right breast and disappears at the base of your inner thigh, but if I post a shirtless something, taken at a beach, I'm some kind of jack ass? You're in a sun dress with back-lit silhouette detailing every line of your nude body, but if I'm featured in a snap wearing bike shorts, that makes me a prima donna? Only the girls get to be pretty, then? Is that it?

Then we have the obese contingent - no small population (PUN!) - who simultaneously lay bear the desire to receive honesty and forthrightness from potential mates and suitors, only to then post the most deceptive and misleading self-photography they can lay hands on. Pictures from high school; from three years and thirty pounds ago; pictures taken in fun house mirrors; pictures shot with vertically distending lenses equipped to the cameras. And my god! how you women manage to find the exact poses, angles, and lighting that will mask acknowledgement of your own heaving third dimensions... The 'hard-lit, downward angle, neck up, sucked-in cheek shot' is just prolific on this site. You don't think that makes you a bit of a liar? a bit of a game-player just like you claim to hate with such passion? when you display a picture that says, "Hi, I'm 130lbs," and then show up on our date with a body that confesses, "eh, more like 180." Might I suggest you don't ask others to provide you with levels of honesty you can't be bothered to bring to the table yourselves?

In fact, there's something creepy about most of the photography on this site. It's become more and more conspicuous as I've browsed more and more profiles that most women know exactly their best side, angle, pose, and facial expression. If you look carefully you can see them making the same face in every shot; turning and lifting their heads by exactly the same slight degrees. To think that women, en masse, as a race and gender, have spent that much time preening before mirrors in the pursuit of their most favorable likenesses, and once found, then trained themselves to adopt that pose the instant someone brandishes a camera... What wretched fate is this? What self-inflicted egoism! What hitherto unfathomable vanity deigns turn truth to fiction and kill the spontaneity of a simple photo!

And the content of these profile descriptions! Sweet lord, was my entire generation's female population spoon fed lead paint chips throughout childhood. The retardation here is perverse.

So, you love your friends and family, eh? They "mean the world to you?" Is that right? See now: that's actually the kind of thing you don't have to say aloud. "I like my friends," is a statement that tells me you aren't too damned bright. See: because, everyone likes their friends. That's why we call them 'friends,' and not '***holes.' Now, if you told me you loved ***holes; that ***holes meant the world to you; well then I'd be impressed for you are truly an evolved being who has overcome the childish discriminations of humanity. As it is, though: telling me you love your friends and family is kind of like shouting, "I eat food!" and it sounds as dumb.

Besides which it is one of the many things you all say in near unison. I can only hope that you have no idea how many other women have written the exact same sentences in their profiles. I but pray that you are not intentionally being this redundant. Though even if you are unaware it speaks poorly of the whole gender that so many should categorize themselves so similarly; not to mention with such shallow, empty statements.

"I love my friends," "I like to have fun," "I like to go out, but I also like to cuddle on the couch with a movie," "I like pretty much any kind of music," "I enjoy travelling."

You see how all these statements are actually non-statements. They're what we call filler. They express and reveal nothing about you as an individual. Most of them amount to saying, "I enjoy things that are enjoyable." So when you use these phrases, you are wasting everyone's time displaying a mock aloofness that you're not even conscious of -- and no one wants to date the semi-conscious. Except, of course, the semi-conscious.

And what's with this trend of putting up a personals ad wherein you expressly tell me that you are too busy to actually have a relationship with me? Every third person on here is going to school while working full time and volunteering three nights a week somewhere, and they expect someone to voluntarily attach themselves to this scheduling quagmire as some kind of perfunctory Boy-Friday. Listen, I understand that you want it all, ladies, but if you can't make time for finding it, then you don't get to have it, okay -- case closed. Move on. Don't waste our time. What you're telling me when you put up ads describing your own lack of availability is that:

a.) You expect me to do some kind of magnificent, wooing, dance of the gods that will impress you enough to make a hole in your otherwise impenetrable schedule, just to try me out. And:
b.) If after that herculean effort to sequester a first date, we should actually hit it off, you'll only be immediately available to me in tiny increments, leaving me to await patiently the whims of your date book.

Gee, I can't wait to dive head first into that relationship. Let me make all the effort for both of us, so that you can have the convenience of occasionally pulling me down off the curio cabinet to play house for a spell. Awesome!

Intelligence is a big factor for me when I'm looking through these profiles and, to date, the female population of this site has represented itself rather poorly on that field. From the quality and content of your profiles I can only glean that you are at least not so intelligent as to bother displaying that intelligence when trying to attract a mate. That elucidates your priorities pretty vividly for me. Clearly the majority of you are not looking for smart men. If you were then you would unruffle and display some of your own IQ-feathers as lure, and I say here, once and for all, you have not done that.

Well, I sort of started out maudlin and turned quickly caustic, didn't I? I've been watching a lot of Dennis Miller comedy specials, so... Anyway, I say all the above to say this: I think we're done. You're just not good enough for me and this has already been a great waste of time.

Goodnight fishes.


Directions of Product (Dollar Store Engrish)

Here's a dollar I won't get back:

The front.

The back.

The kicker.

For the record - and the search engines - these are "YIN'ER BEST CLEANERS CLEANING SPONGES," and the back of the packaging reads as follows:






...and I quote. The dollar spent? Totally worth it!

Simple Neon Arrow

In the course of graphically designing a web page for a new night club that will be opening in Canton, I required an image of a neon sign in the shape of an arrow. After perusing the Google image gallery and finding nothing quite to task I decided to try modeling it in 3d.

I found a very concise tutorial, exactly suited to my level of experience within Blender and, augmenting it a touch here and there to better meet my mind's eye's beholding, put the effort to bed in under an hour.

The result:

...Simple but photo-realistic and exactly what I needed. Note that I made the curve 3-dimensional so as to twist the glass tube toward the backing piece. I think that little detail is what sells the image.

Mosquito in Profile

Late last night I felt a mosquito alight upon my exposed hand - the only portion of skin not hidden beneath quilt or pillow - and work his muzzle deep down into the dermis for a warm draft. And I'm fine with that. Hey, that's what I'm here for! I'm really just a walking, talking, 44oz, blood-flavored Big Gulp, and I accept that fate. I'm not going to spend my whole life begrudging an entire genus of plasma seekers their daily bread, but for the instant of mildest discomfort necessarily associated with the work. Just keep off the face, alright?

As I say, I could feel the rustle and occasional pinch of a mosquito making hay atop my right hand as I lay waiting for sleep. But as time wore on the sensation of being bit, usually a solitary event followed by acute stillness, repeated and increased in frequency. Eventually I lifted my head from the pillow and turned to address my hapless nurse who couldn't find the vein, readying a stern lecture on the evils of taking advantage of others' kindnesses. But what do I find here? Two mosquitos! Side by side, working their little noses into the fleshy buffet of my skin in unison; bearing all the aspect of a two-man team alternately humping away at a hand-pumped railroad car.

Two o'clock in the morning, or no: this was worth a photograph. Carefully I drew back the quilt and sheets and carefully I lifted my hand from the surface of the bed. And to my drinkers' merits they did not stir as I negotiated my camera.

But shooting photos in the dark - and one-handed nonetheless - takes some dialing-in; in the process of which one of my small companions filled his belly to the brim with blood and flitted off in gourmand satisfaction, leaving me but one prima donna to preen in the impromptu shoot.

See the blood reddening his belly? That's me!


I'm going to sell prints of this.

Rutting Season

I give you the text of my latest personals ad:

I'm a newcomer to Detroit as of the 1st of this July. I moved here from forty miles north, in Clarkston, with the purpose of being closer to the Detroit Zen Center in Hamtramck. I now live so close to the Zen Center that I can bike there; and I do, on occasion.

I prefer biking to driving, so when I've the option you'll find me at the pedals. I've so far mapped a fair strip of the city - mainly that surrounding Woodward - ridden on bicycle. I've chased fireworks down Trumbull; I've sat fountain-side at Campus Martius park; I've turned a mile or three of the river walk; and I've made the grueling trek all the way out to Belle Isle and back (near twenty miles round-trip) twice, pausing of course to swim and sun on the beach; all from behind the handlebars.

I'm definitely digging Detroit.

I like to read. I'm currently thigh deep into Charles Dickens' catalogue and enjoying it profusely. Though I'll say there certainly seems to be no shortage of angelically tempered, misused, orphan children dusting round the streets of Dickens' London. Neither is that city found wanting of monastically chaste, ethereally beautiful, doting and devoted sisters, wives, and daughters, in the full ripeness and bloom of youth. But that we should all be so lucky as to find ourselves parent-less urchins wandering the streets and county roads of a Dickensian England.

I play golf regularly. I play disc golf occasionally. (That was last season's sport.) I play the guitar, the drums, and I sing -- all proficiently but not spectacularly. I record and mix music; I post the occasional Youtube video; I work out; I watch Naruto Shippuden and Kyou Kara Maou; I sit at the Zen Center; and I go to 'Space Band' shows.

Brace yourself. I'm going to field some negatives now:

I don't own a television and I don't want one. I'm pleasantly ignorant of the goings-on within the tube and I prefer to stay that way, thank you. I don't listen to the radio, read the papers, or check the Yahoo headlines. As for current events, politics, and public opinion, I've had my fill. I was rather vocal on politics, government, and economic philosophy once. Having tried it I find that I much prefer turning my head and holding my peace.

I don't have a Facebook account, or Twitter, or even a cell phone, and I closed up the Myspace shop long ago. I don't want in on your social network. I don't care how convenient you think it is to be constantly in touch. I, for one, have no desire to be harangued with mindless, idle chatter.

I want to start baking. I want to put a band together. I want to learn Japanese. I want to find a job outside of IT. I want to feel a woman's skin against my lips, nose, and cheek.

If you can help with one or more of these, send self-addressed stamped envelope...

Bread without a Bread Pan

I refrained from purchasing a loaf of bread when I went grocery shopping today, despite dire need thereof, resolving instead to conjure some up using my many infernal magics. It was to be my first loaf from scratch and all was coming along well enough until I reached for the bread pan - into which I meant to summon my dark-pastry from the netherworlds below - when I realized that I don't actually own a bread pan.

Well, necessity is the inbred cousin of invention... Have at you kitchen cupboards!

Rise from your grave!

Matching a square pan with sides of a tolerable height to a longer pan of similar dimensions I achieved full bread pan velocity. I rubbed those sides of each pan in margarine which would make contact with the dough, and continued reciting incantations from my book of shadows. The flames of Hades soon rose to an even 400 degrees and a mere thirty minutes later I was manging on one tasty voodoo sandwich.

Fresh from Hell's own Oven!

Cerberus gets the scraps.

Firefox is Dead to me

Once upon a time I abandoned Internet Explorer for this really slick, really sleek new browser. It opened up faster, browsed quicker, and had more customizable features than IE. It really was the bee's knees and everybody thought so, I tell you what! And it's name was... Netscape.

Oh how the mighty do fall! A few minutes later Netscape decided that I would doubtless prefer the option of adorning the margins of my browser with custom graphics, to such paltry considerations as speed and performance. About the same time Microsoft wised up (if only momentarily) and tuned it's browser for performance, sending me and a whole generation of hopeless internet addicts running gleefully back to embrace everyone's least favorite browser once more.

Time passed, seasons changed, and sure enough a new contender emerged brandishing a moniker resembling that of a poorly conceived Pokemon character: Mozilla Firefox. And oh how the fanboys did come a'runnin to laud it's many noble virtues. (Not to mention a handful of it's noble faults.)

Internet Explorer was jilted once more - the ignorant slut - as we all collectively shouted, "I choose you, Firefox!" But not for sake of standards compliancy or plug-ins galore. For what did we cross the aisle? Speed, baby. Speed. It popped, it zinged, it whizzed like greased lightning trying to bury a turd on a marble rocking chair... or something. Of course this is not to undervalue the momentary virtue of being significantly less-targeted by malware than IE was. Surely many horny, porn surfers preferred Firefox for it's prophylactic ability to keep their digital doohickeys trojan free.

Aye, Mozilla and her Firefox were the cat's meow, I tell you what. They were...

But through a recent moment of serendipity I found call to step back and take a good look at our favorite son, Firefox, as it exists today; putting aside the hype and foregone conclusions of days passed. And you know what I noticed? Firefox is the absolute slowest browser to open. That's right. The slowest! Slower than IE. You know what else? The Flash plug-in's performance under Firefox is laggy.

Well, these two deficits don't exactly mount a huge case against it, I suppose. But still it was enough to drive me back to the browser dealership to take a look at the new models. You know what I found? The hatchback Ford Fiesta is fucking sexy!

And so is Google Chrome. It's been a while since I took Chrome for a test drive and time has aged her well. Chrome opens faster than any other browser I've tried. The flash performance kicks ass. Why? Probably because it's not a plug-in. The latest Flash player is built directly in.

Chrome gives me more viewable area than any other browser, mainly by ditching the Title bar, going straight to tabs, and placing the information you'd normally get from a Status bar into a hovering, disappearing, reappearing, magical mouse-over event from the land beyond time.

At first, I admit, I was disgruntled by the lack of configurable options. Well, now I champion this lacking. Less truly is more. Just give me a good, fast horse to ride and keep your bloated, deluxe model with the in-mane HD display and whinnyable ring-tones. I don't want it!

I have five extensions in Chrome right now. One puts a Gmail icon and new message count on the toolbar; another puts the Google Voice icon on the toolbar; another blocks flash content by default unless I click it; another brings in my Google Bookmarks; and the last allows me to save web pages as a single file. That's everything I need and more, right there. And with these features installed and enabled Chrome blasts out of the starting gate and round the track before Firefox can even loose it's obese, cellulite-ridden thighs from the ever tightening fit of the old Poke-ball. Chrome is as CSS3 and HTML5 compliant as any browser should be. It's hip. It's happening. It's the place to be, baby. Get on board the choo-choo train.

Firefox has followed in the footsteps of Netscape, favoring tens of thousands of plug-ins, and user-customizable skins over speed and performance. May she rest in peace... the whore.

Long live Google Chrome! (Until something better comes along.)

'Distance' Tab by Long Shot Party

...by overwhelming Youtube request.
[Watch my cover HERE.]

'Distance' by Long Shot Party

Tabbed by Roy Tousignant
August 10th, 2010

This is the shortened, for-TV version of 'Distance' as
heard in Naruto Shippuden's OP2. The song opens and
closes on the chorus.

E|-3-- |-0-- |-2-- -|
B|-3-- |-2-- |-3-- -|
G|-0-- |-2-- |-2-- -| x2
D|-0-- |-2-- |-0-- -|
A|-2-- |-0-- |-0-- -|
E|-3-- |-0-- |---- -|

G A F#m Bm A
|-3-- |-0-- |-2-- |-2-- |-0--
|-3-- |-2-- |-2-- |-3-- |-2--
|-0-- |-2-- |-2-- |-4-- |-2--
|-0-- |-2-- |-4-- |-4-- |-2--
|-2-- |-0-- |-4-- |-2-- |-0--
|-3-- |-0-- |-2-- |-2-- |-0--

|-3-- |-0-- |-2-- -|
|-3-- |-2-- |-3-- -|
|-0-- |-2-- |-2-- -|
|-0-- |-2-- |-0-- -|
|-2-- |-0-- |-0-- -|
|-3-- |-0-- |---- -|

D5 D5b G5 D5
|---- |---- |---- |----
|---- |---- |---- |----
|---- |-7-- |---- |----
|-7-- |-6-- |---- |-7--
|-5-- |-5-- |-5-- |-5--
|---- |---- |-3-- |----

D5 D5b G A D
|---- |---- |-3-- |-0-- |-2--
|---- |---- |-3-- |-2-- |-3--
|---- |-7-- |-4-- |-2-- |-3--
|-7-- |-6-- |-5-- |-2-- |-0--
|-5-- |-5-- |-5-- |-0-- |-0--
|---- |---- |-3-- |-0-- |----

Em A D Bm
|-0-- |-0-- |-2-- |-2--
|-0-- |-2-- |-3-- |-3--
|-0-- |-2-- |-2-- |-4--
|-2-- |-2-- |-0-- |-4--
|-2-- |-0-- |-0-- |-2--
|-0-- |-0-- |---- |-2--

Em A Bb C D
|-0-- |-0-- |-1-- |-3-- |-2-- -|
|-0-- |-2-- |-3-- |-5-- |-3-- -|
|-0-- |-2-- |-3-- |-5-- |-2-- -|
|-2-- |-2-- |-3-- |-5-- |-0-- -|
|-2-- |-0-- |-1-- |-3-- |-0-- -|
|-0-- |-0-- |-1-- |-3-- |---- -|

-Repeat Chorus- x2



Expanding a DIV to Size of 'background-image'

I struggled with this for a bit yesterday and found naught but forums telling me 'it can't be done,' or 'why are you doing that, it's stupid,' so I thought I'd share the solution I developed.

The Problem

Here's the scenario: You have a DIV that will contain some text. You have different background-images that you want displayed under the text depending on which page is showing. But the background images are of varying sizes.

What you want, therefore, is a way to expand your DIV to the dimensions of whatever background-image you happen to stick inside it, without having to explicitly declare width and height values, either at your style sheet or in-line.

...and now you're off the rails.

One could surely pose a number of "why not" scenarios, such as: 'Why not just declare the width and height in-line?' or 'Why not just make the text part of the images?' Or one could pontificate upon the myriad of client and server-side solutions for querying the image size and declaring the DIV dimensions equal by script. But instead, let's just assume that we are coders and geeks, and that if there is a simpler solution requiring less explicit declaration and more uniform code distribution, then that elegance of design is our tacit desire and reward.


First off we must accept and acknowledge the limitations before us. The 'background-image' declaration does not care for width and height. It will fill a DIV with the image you choose, but it cannot under any circumstances be used to alter the boundaries of the DIV. Give that up right now!

Besides which, a 'background-image' declaration here would have to be placed in-line to meet our need of changing it across different pages, and I think it a best-practice to avoid in-line styles wherever possible, favoring HTML tags for dynamic content.

The solution, therefore, must be implemented from within the DIV. Anything placed inside a DIV of undeclared width and height will expand that DIV to fit. So in place of a 'background-image' declaration, we will set an <img> tag inside the DIV. The IMG's dimensions will be determined upon page load and the DIV will expand to match.

<div id="my_div">
<img src="images/bg1.gif">

Now comes the text we want displayed atop our IMG. Just shoehorn it in there with a <p> tag. We'll make it work in a minute.

<div id="my_div">
<p>Contact Us!</p>
<img src="images/bg1.gif">

So now we have a DIV containing two blocks: P and IMG. What we want is for the P tag to overlay the IMG tag, creating the effect of IMG as a background. We accomplish this by use of negative margins and 'z-index.'

First off, the P tag has its own vertical margins which we'll want to zero so we can have a simple text-block with no extraneous white-space to work with. As for making our IMG into a background, we can force the P tag to overlap IMG's boundaries by giving IMG a negative 'margin-top.'

#my_div p { margin: 0 }
#my_div img { margin-top: -80px }

If you looked now, you would find that the text of the P tag has more or less disappeared behind your IMG. Here the IMG tag has a higher natural z-index than the text, meaning it is being drawn after, or overtop of P. We can change that by giving the IMG a negative z-index, which places it dimensionally beneath P. Note here that when you set a 'z-index' you must also make the 'position' of the element explicit, or it will not take effect.

#my_div p { margin: 0 }
#my_div img {
margin-top: -80px;
position: relative;
z-index: -1;

Finally your P tag should be sitting proudly atop your IMG which has effectively become a background-image. Huzzah! Full code follows...

The Solution

<style type="text/css">
#my_div p { margin: 0 }
#my_div img {
margin-top: -80px;
position: relative;
z-index: -1;

<div id="my_div">
<p>Contact Us!</p>
<img src="images/bg1.gif">

Beautiful isn't it? Just four lines of CSS and you can now switch out one background for another of an entirely different width - and even a different height if the design is right - without so much as a whisper regarding those properties. All you declare explicitly is how far down to drop your text over the image. "Can't be done," my eye!

There are some pitfalls to watch out for when implementing this method. For instance, it might seem just as easy to make the 'margin-bottom' of P a negative instead of the 'margin-top' of IMG, but if you do it this way Internet Explorer, in particular, just might chop off the vertical edges of your IMG if P's block fails to fill the DIV out to the full height of IMG. This can be countered by augmenting line-height, but then you're fighting battles you don't have to. Yeah, I may have learned that one the hard way.

There you go: Dynamically expanding a DIV to the size of a background image. Tada!

Hot Damn and Cool Lemonade


This tune also lifted from the July 31st session with Brandon F. Only after submitting 'Ball that Jack' from the same session did I realize this jam's obvious superiority. Dig that beat, baby.

Ball that Jack


Here's a pretty little number taken from a jam session between Brandon F. and myself. It features clipped electric guitar and sporadicly kicking e-drums. It's the first session of it's kind, equipment-wise, so some dials still need dialing; buttons buttoning; levers levering...

It's certainly not the best jam to come out of the day, but it's the most song-like and self-contained. (Read: Publicly consumable.) Enjoy.

[UPDATE: Also available from this session: 'Hot Damn and Cool Lemonade'... It's much better!]

I'm here.

In case you aren't down on the upside I'll give you the straight skinny. Listen good. This cat's been scratching on a different roof, you dig? Kitty got his own litter box and now it's tuna every night. We're broadcasting live from midtown D-Town at 50,000 watts. So can you hear me, people? Holla' Detroit what!

Detroit, sho'nough. No skin, baby; I wouldn't kid you. I'm a straight talkin', tall walkin', cool character. I got no time to mix and rhyme. I just keep riding and swinging, lifting and singing, breathing and holding that line. And I'll be hold it till the kingdom come or bust. Bank that, baby-o.

Bank that.

Dissatisfied and Leaving - Jungle Disk

I've been using Jungle Disk for some time now to backup my data to Amazon's S3. I've formed a less-than-stellar opinion of the software on a number of different heads, (see: Jungle Disk 3.04 - Update From Hell) but today I noticed an 800mb data transfer in process and wondered what it was - so large - that I was unexpectedly backing up. Upon investigation I found that Jungle Disk was re-uploading a certain collection of videos and other files which I'd recently gathered together and moved into their own sub-folders. Now, these files had all existed in the backup previously, they were just moved one folder deeper from their last position.

I personally find it ludicrous that an online file backup system should be unable to deal with a simple move operation like this, without uploading the whole file's content a second time. There's hash data, modified dates, file sizes, file sampling, and so forth... all which could be used to recognize these changes to say: "Hey wait, this file is already on the server, it's just somewhere else in the file tree now. I don't need to upload the data again, I can just modify the associated meta data."

Today's 800Mb's pushed me over the edge and set me on the search for some other software solution that will quietly run in the background and let me backup to S3. Yes, Jungle Disk has so disappointed me that I'm willing to re-upload my entire data set at Amazon's usual 85Kbps just to be rid of them. I'm making inquiries now. I'll report any success using other software.

'Jitensha' Tab by Oreskaband

My first official guitar tablature. ...by Youtube request.
[Watch my cover HERE.]

'Jitensha' by Oreskaband (Ore Ska Band)

Tabbed by Roy Tousignant
June 10th, 2010

I should note that this is my way of playing 'Jitensha'
on an accoustic guitar for the purpose of a live, solo
performance. It is not 100% faithful to the band version.

F5 Eaug5 D5 Bb5 C5
E|---- |---- |---- |---- |----
B|---- |---- |---- |---- |----
G|---- |---- |---- |---- |----
D|-10- |-10- |-7-- |---- |----
A|-8-- x16 |-7-- x16 |-5-- x16 |-8-- x8 |-10- x8
E|---- |---- |---- |-6-- |-8--

F5 Eaug5 D5 Bb5
|---- |---- |---- |----
|---- |---- |---- |----
|---- |---- |---- |----
|-10- |-10- |-7-- |----
|-8-- x16 |-7-- x16 |-5-- x16 |-8-- x16
|---- |---- |---- |-6--

A5 D5 Bb5
|---- |---- |----
|---- |---- |----
|---- |---- |----
|---- |-7-- |----
|-7-- x8 |-5-- x8 |-8-- x16
|-5-- |---- |-6--

A5 D5 Bb5 C5 C5 (staggered tempo)
|---- |---- |---- |---- |-------
|---- |---- |---- |---- |-------
|---- |---- |---- |---- |-------
|---- |-7-- |---- |---- |-------
|-7-- x8 |-5-- x8 |-8-- x16 |-10- x9 |-10---- x3
|-5-- |---- |-6-- |-8-- |-8-----

-Chorus Chords-
FMaj EmAug5 Dm Bb
|-1-- |---- |-1-- |-1--
|-1-- |---- |-3-- |-3--
|-2-- |-0-- |-2-- |-3--
|-3-- |-2-- |-0-- |-3--
|-3-- |-3-- |-0-- |-1--
|-1-- |-3-- |-x-- |-1--

-Bridge 1-
Bb5 A5 G5 C5
|---- |---- |---- |----
|---- |---- |---- |----
|---- |---- |---- |----
|-8-- |-7-- |-3-- |-10-
|-8-- x8 |-7-- x8 |-3-- x8 |-10- x8
|-6-- |-5-- |-5-- |-8--

Bb5 A5 G5 F5
|---- |---- |---- |----
|---- |---- |---- |----
|---- |---- |---- |----
|-8-- |-7-- |-3-- |-3--
|-8-- x8 |-7-- x8 |-3-- x6 |-3-- x1
|-6-- |-5-- |-5-- |-1--

-Bridge 2-
Bb5 A5 G5 C5
|---- |---- |---- |---- -|
|---- |---- |---- |---- -|
|---- |---- |---- |---- -| x3
|-8-- |-7-- |-5-- |-10- -|
|-8-- x3 |-7-- x3 |-5-- x3 |-10- x7 -|
|-6-- |-5-- |-3-- |-8-- -|

Bb5 A5 C5
|---- |---- |----
|---- |---- |----
|---- |---- |----
|-8-- |-7-- |-10-
|-8-- x3 |-7-- x3 |-10- x8 Pause x6
|-6-- |-5-- |-8--

Bb5 A5 G5 C5
|----------------------5------5--5------5--| x3

F5 C5 Bb5 D5 Bb5 E5 F5



'Jitensha' by Oreskaband

Bicycle, bicycle, bicycle... I reverse engineered this song from scratch, people. Though, it's probably tabbed out nicely somewhere -- I just always have to do things the hard way, don't I? I'm covering the full version here, but I heard it first (and fell in love) by way of Naruto Shippuden's latest credit's roll.

The lyrics are memorized phonetically and from katakana transcription. No, I don't speak Nippon-go.

O, ne? Hai! So desu!

[UPDATE: By request, I've tabbed out my method of playing this song and posted it here.]

This Day in 1981...

By "this day" I mean Sunday before last, and by the trailing ellipsis I mean to say that I was born. Whereas "this day," 2010, I went golfing con mi padre.

'Old Joe Something was a woodsman and he rowed his boat ashore.'

After nine holes and 48 strokes at White Lake Oaks I then proceeded immediately to Bay Court Park for 18 holes and strokes-unspecified of disc golf, yet still con mi padre.

"Everybody get down!"

As you can surely imagine, after twenty-seven holes and two golf-oriented sporting activities I really needed to eat some Mexican food. "To Mexico Lindo!" ...con mi padre y mi madre también.

Now that I had the whole family assembled we retired to la casa for cake-by-Mom.

Just add homemade whipped cream.

And you were there, and you were there, and your little dog too.

Andy, the timid.

Let's open presents! I got a divot repair tool; A crazy prong-ended hand tool whats purpose only my dad knows -- and isn't telling; A deck of cards printed for the website Omega.com featuring - instead of naked ladies - ham radio equipment, capacitors, oscilloscopes, multimeters, and other obscure tech; a good hat; And... wait. What's this behind me here?

"A brand new car!"

No one mention the white Mongoose in the room.

I recover from the blind-side. Dad goes home. My mom and I have a beer and talk about the good-old days, or the lack thereof, or something. I don't recall.

Mi madre con su perro Andy.

Some days later my new license arrives to announce that in four short years I've gone from pudgy, rosy-cheeked stoner, to officer tight-ass, highway patrol.

Me thinks, for soothe, the truth lieth here betwixt.

'Virus Protector' Removal

I came across an infection going by the name of "Virus Protector" today. It had taken over the Windows XP shell via:

HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\shell

...replacing the value 'Explorer.exe' with its own executable (randomly generated filename) located under C:\Windows\system32\. It had also disabled the task manager via the registry at:


This combination left no entry point for online repair since even Safe Mode boots whatever shell the Winlogon refers it to.

I removed the hard drive and hooked it up to a diagnostic machine. I cleaned the temp files and ran a virus scan as a matter of course, but a certain methodology I used makes this article worth writing -- if only to me.

Guessing, at that time, that the Winlogon\shell value was the culprit I used LoadHive.exe to mount the software portion of the infected machine's registry located under C:\Windows\system32\config\.

Upon inspecting the Winlogon\shell value I found it redirected, (of course) but as I was accessing the registry offline now, correcting the corrupted key by editing the value at the registry wasn't the easiest solution. Instead, I made a copy of C:\Windows\explorer.exe, renamed it to match the name of the infection, and pasted it in place of the virus. This allowed me to boot the computer normally and continue the repair by unlocking the registry, which had also been disabled "by my Administrator." Thereafter I edited the Winlogon\shell's value back to its correct value of simply "Explorer.exe," thus defeating Virus Protector.

The End

P.S.: Pretty neat how you can close off a machine entirely just by hijacking the Winlogon\shell and disabling task manager, ain't it?

[ Update: Why didn't I just edit the Winlogon\shell value via Loadhive.exe, you ask? I have no good answer. I just got it in my head that Loadhive was a read-only tool. It's not. Changes made after a hive is loaded are written to the hive as they usually would be. So nevermind any of this, I guess. Just change the shell value when you're in regedit and be done with it. ]

Kick-Ass Fails to Kick Ass

Random blogger hazards movie review out of boredom... Lord save us.

I saw 'Kick-Ass' yesterday for a matinee. It cost me $4.50 to get in; $7.50 for the small popcorn and regular-sized Sierra Mist. I was actually on-time for once, which meant I sat plugging my ears, humming the Om in an attempt to drown out the five minutes and 105 decibels of ghastly local advertising.

Previews were curious. There's an 'A-Team' movie coming out that should be fun if you're not religious about the old TV series. As much as we all liked the A-Team, I don't think anyone will care if today's Hollywood blasphemes it a bit. Those characters were all caricatures of themselves to begin with, so the worst damage Hollywood could hope to do them would be in attaching some over-rich backstory and depth of character they were quite happy without. ...Then destroy the old trademark GMC van in some epic sequence and replace it with the highest bidder's newest-model big, ugly SUV.

Yes, I am psychic, thank you.

On the way passed the ticket counter I also caught glimpse of a poster heralding a new 'Tron' movie in the works. Now that one will suck... balls. A Tron sequel in 2010 will be blasphemous - with little doubt - and in no way worthy of the original. The best you can hope for there is some "amazing CGI" -- presumably the same "amazing CGI" in EVERY movie these days. I'm sure if you look hard enough The Sisterhood of the Traveling Dildo, or whatever, had "amazing CGI" too.

So, Kick-Ass, right... Summarily, it lacks acting. Though you mustn't hold that too much against the actors. Not that they haven't their share in the blame, but the film, as written, plainly just didn't call for any acting.

The main character is the modern movie stereotype of likable teen dork. At least, I suppose Hollywood would call it "likable." As this character might pertain to acting cues: When girl in scene, bumble, crack voice, and look stupid. When danger, bumble, crack voice, and look stupid. When in doubt of motivation...

Before I get too far gone, I should say that the plot is very well-constructed, and both the story and the story-telling have many charms. The movie is persistently self-aware and never manages to take itself seriously, even during what are supposed to be the most rending, grandiose climaxes. (Where the viewer might otherwise appreciate the moment's gravity.) All in all, the framework of the movie is very good. In fact, that's just what I'd call it: The framework of a movie. Girders, columns, beams... An excellent substructure upon which to erect an actual movie, which at this time does not exist.

These characters are dragged along by their collars at the whims of an intractable plot. They don't contribute to it. Their personal decisions don't influence its direction. None of them ever takes hold the rudder and turns the boat. We've got a script here, folks, and we're heading toward the end of it.

No one is likable. The geeky main character never grows a pair; or by the time he does it doesn't count because the story has devolved, by then, into self-parody. This is by design, of course. He's not really meant to stop being an everyman; or rather an everydork; but be it intentional or not the result is you spending two hours watching a nervous, fidgety, voice-cracking leading man whose character must force himself to overcome the same innate sense of mortality and weakness in every third scene, all the way to the credits.

The female lead and love-interest is way too blue-eyed, sugar-bear, flawless complexion, cute to be considered in any way sexually attractive, even when she's nude from the waist up, holding a breast in each hand for modesty, and getting an oily rub down from our half-naked protagonist. Yep, that's in there. Nope, not aroused.

Then there's Nick Cage who plays... Wait a second, I love doing this:

Nick Cage is Adam West as Big Daddy.

Nick doesn't get enough screen time for his particular brand of crazy, moody, monotone to become something humanly relatable. Even in his own films it tends to take a while. So there's another undeveloped character just sort of trucking the plot forward.

Even 'Hit Girl,' the eleven year old show-stealer/death-bringer is written with so little personality that even her bloody, too-cool-for-Neo action sequences can't really carry her into your heart. Oh how I long for Natalie Portman's Matilda.

But okay, here's the thing: It's not really a bad movie. It's good in a lot of ways. It's best if taken as a sort of snake-eating-its-own-tail parody of comics and the modern movie-making standards of comic-based films. Would I recommend it? Meh. If you got time and money...

The reason I'm so down on it here is that I see what could have been. Kick-Ass is a great movie that never got made. Hollywood stopped working on it when they realized there was enough already to sell a reasonable amount of popcorn. It's an abortive film, to my mind, that was either written too well to just be a summer-movie or too poorly to achieve the greatness it hints at, and between these worlds lies my contempt.

That and too much exposure to congested, nasily teenagers, pretending to pretend to be cool.