31 January 2007

A few things...

The more I read about it, the more I think that college debt is going to become a major issue for people under the age of 40 in this country. This article from USA Today says that the average college leaves with $19K of debt (that includes me!) when they enter the workforce. That sort of debt is ridiculous and can play a major role in what sort of career people persue merely based on dealing with that kind of debt. I, for one, am glad that Tedward is taking on the banks to keep loan interest down.

In other news, the new Shins album, Wincing the Night Away, entered the Billboard Top 200 Album charts at #2. Yes, #2. They missed #1 by something like 15,000 albums, which isn't that much considering they sold something like 150,000 copies of the disc. Wow. Go "indie" pop.

For those of you looking for a good album, why not read my review of Jarvis Cocker's solo debut, Jarvis. The album doesn't come out in the US until 4/3, but its great.

29 January 2007

Hey! Soccer!

So, for those of you who don't follow Major League Soccer in the US (yes, all 250 million of you who don't), David Beckham, possibly the most famous footballer in the world (and also married to Posh Spice) signed a deal to play for the Los Angeles Galaxy of the MLS when his current contract with Real Madrid runs out June 30. Mind you, this is not an over-the-hill player, Beckham is 31 and still has quite a few years left in him and it is quite a coup for US Soccer. However, it does come with some crazy side effects: (1) the MLS has been, since its inception, well aware of spiralling salaries, which is why all players are technically signed through the league and then "assigned" to teams so that most salaries are standardized (and low). Heck, rookies only have guaranteed salaries of $11K/year! However, this year they changed the rules so that each team may sign a player outside the salary structure, meaning ... (2) David Beckham signed a 5 year, $250 million contract! Yes. $250 million. 5 years. He will make more in 5 years than the much ballyhooed/maligned. Alex Rodriguez makes in his giant 10 year $202 million contract. Indeed!
The way I figure, Beckham makes more than the entire rest of the L.A. Galaxy put together ... and then some. Next season, he makes only $24,463,000 more than the team captain of the L.A. Galaxy, Peter Vagenas, does. Now thats crazy. But hey, if you got the money, might as well spend it right. The next time you're at work, though, look at your coworker and think about the morale if you knew he/she was making only 390x what you make. Ha!
That being said, Beckham will be a hoot stateside and who knows who else he might bring along ... Rivaldo? McBride? Zidane? Rooney? Ha!

26 January 2007

Busy Busy Busy

It's been a busy week of counting ions, so not much to add here.

Glad to see that the Red Sox finally got the J.D. Drew deal done. My over/under for games played by Drew in 2007 is 130. Any guesses?

Anyway, I have my first top 10 from my new iPod. Enjoy!
10 Burning with the Bed on Fire - the Aefect
9 God Knows (You've Gotta Give to Get) - El Perro del Mar
8 Did I Step On Your Trumpet? - Danielson
7 This Sentence Will Save/Ruin Your Life - Born Ruffians
6 Between the Moon and the Ocean - the Bon Savants
5 Brandenburg - Beirut
4 Nag Nag Nag Nag - Art Brut
3 Yeah, Oh Yeah (Live) - Tullycraft
2 The Sons of Cain - Ted Leo/Pharmacists
1 Made of Steam - Dengue Fever

23 January 2007


Hey! It's my birthday!
Hey! I'm 30!
Hey! A 2 month old TIG mailbag posted today!

(Anybody guess who is pictured here? Clue: check out the birthday list.)

22 January 2007

The waning hours of my 20's

Yes my friends, I have 7 hours left in my 20's ... and how will I spend it?
Working on a presentation for a class tomorrow ... damn you amphibole!

Really, though, good party last saturday. 30 is the new 20, right? Am I right people?!

(Enjoy this image ... the first hit when you type "30" into a Google Image search).

19 January 2007

Back on Track ... sort of ...

I kind of lost track of things for the last few days between getting a new lab ready and playing with my new video iPod. So, no top 10 for a while - I need to actually listen to songs more than once before I can get a real top 10, eh?

However, I did get pointed to a live version of a song that spent a lot of time on my top 10. It was filmed at Bumbershoot 2006, and its super cool: the Blue Scholars - No Rest for the Weary. (Heck, any hip-hop group with an MC named Geologic gets my vote.)

And here is a new TIG review too: Emily Haines & the Soft Skeleton - The Knives Don't Have Your Back.

16 January 2007

Blog linking

OK, it might be lame, but I point you to the Tullycraft Blog yet again, mostly for the new post of Tullycraft's awesome cover of Magnetic Fields Yeah Oh Yeah from last year's TIG Valentine's Day show. Excellent stuff, makes me feel all warm. Now, if only I could get For Better or For Awesome's cover of "Luckiest Guy on the Lower East Side". Sigh.

12 January 2007

A long weekend ...

of being ill? I feel like I might be getting ill, and thats no fun.

Sometime soon, I'll start a little series of posts on the state of various MLB teams looking at their offseason roster moves. Maybe. We'll see if I can get my act together for that. Until then, I'm just counting the days until spring training begins (for the record, it would be 35 days until pitchers and catchers report.)

11 January 2007

Now that would be innovation ... !

So last night I had a dream you could buy airline tickets from the takeout window of a local Mexican restaurant. "One large burrito. Where do you want to go?" "Philadelphia?" (walks into kitchen ... comes out a few moments later) "How does 2:10 on Monday work?"

Yeah, odd.

Anyway, here is my iPod top 10...

10 Shipwrecked - the Gothic Archies
9 Lay & Love - Bonnie "Prince" Billy
8 Wake Up (Live) - the Arcade Fire & David Bowie
7 Pull Shapes - the Pipettes
6 This Sentence Will Save/Ruin Your Life - Born Ruffians
5 The Funeral - Band of Horses
4 Blood - Klashnekoff
3 Between the Moon & the Ocean - Bon Savants
2 Parentheses - the Blow
1 True Affection - the Blow

Oh yeah, and 2 new TIG reviews:
The Gossip - Standing in the Way of Control
Jucifer - If Thine Enemy Hunger

10 January 2007

Note to self

Check to make sure the switch is turned "on" before emailing the engineers.


08 January 2007

Captain Jack, how we miss ye...

Now we must wait until 1/16 to enjoy Season 2 of Doctor Who. It still saddens me to know that Christopher Eccleston isn't back for Season 2. He was fabulous as the Doctor, and after watching Season 1 again, I think he might rank a close second to Tom Baker for me (sacrilege! Blasphemy!) That and I still love the Daleks (and others would agree). Apparently Season 3 of Doctor Who has an episode titled "Daleks in Manhattan" which sounds too cool for words.

And if anyone knows when the Captain Jack spinoff Torchwood gets released on DVD stateside, I'd love to know.

I hate these musical doldrums in the early part of the year after Christmas. Not much to talk about on that front beyond my new love for the band El Perro Del Mar. Good stuff ...

05 January 2007

The Doctor

It's sunny and windy in California today - well, at least in the Central Valley.

Now, isn't that exciting. Almost as exciting as Season 2 of Doctor Who coming out in a few weeks. And I haven't even seen any of those episodes yet. Yeah. I am a little nervous because we've just started watching (well, re-watching for me) Season 1, I realize how much I like Chris Eccleston as the Doctor, only to have him last merely a season. I'm sure David Tennant will be great (heck, he changed his name for the stage as a tribute to the Pet Shop Boys), but still, I really like Eccleston.

That's all for today! Enjoy the weekend.

04 January 2007

Something else new to read

Here is a new TIG review to enjoy ... its a double-duty review!
The Walkmen - A Hundred Miles Off and "Pussycats" starring the Walkmen.

I think thats all for now except for some reason I'd love to see Joel Piniero as the Red Sox closer, mostly because it makes no sense to me. Yes, let's have someone who has gotten worse for the last 5 years, has no stuff and had an ERA of 4.61 as a reliever last year as the closer. Hmmm. Maybe Bill James sees something I don't. Ah well.

03 January 2007

Ah yes...

Alright, I'm trying to get my head back into gear now that the quarter has started ... Good luck. I'm horribly chipper though, thanks to my southern belle. *Sigh* (in a good way).

A new TIG review (for my #2 album of 2006): The Blow - Paper Television.

And here's my current iPod top 10 ...
10 Lay & Love - Bonnie "Prince" Billy
9 Wake Up (Live) - the Arcade Fire with David Bowie
8 Boy Soprano - Xiu Xiu
7 Shipwrecked - Gothic Archies
6 This Sentence Will Save/Ruin Your Life - Born Ruffians
5 The Funeral - Band of Horses
4 Blood - Klashnekoff
3 Between the Moon & the Ocean - Bon Savants
2 Parentheses - the Blow
1 True Affection - the Blow

02 January 2007

Best of 2006 - Finally

So here it is, my best albums of 2006 ... enjoy!

Top 20 of 2006
(song of choice in italics)

1 – Islands: Return to the Sea
With what could be the only Islands record, these ex-Unicorns recorded the most diverse and enjoyable album of the year.
Where There’s a Will There’s a Whalebone
2 – The Blow: Paper Television
The dark horse candidate, an album that is the most infectious electro-pop gem since Give Up, but with less pain and more angst.
3 – Art Brut: Bang Bang Rock and Roll
Gives you faith that rock and roll still exists.
Emily Kane
4 – Xiu Xiu: The Air Force
A f&%ked-up, disconcerting and disturbing masterpiece of noise.
Boy Soprano
5 – Suburban Kids with Biblical Names: #3
Jens Lekman meets the Beta Band. Possibly the most fun with your clothes on all year.
Seems to be on My Mind

6 – The Knife: Silent Shout
The best Bjork album Bjork never recorded. Dark, sinister and truly disquieting – but in a good way.
We Share Our Mothers’ Health
7 – The Pipettes: We Are the Pipettes
Total throwback, but who can resist three British ladies with matching dresses singing about sex. No one, that’s who.
Pull Shapes
8 – TV on the Radio: Return to Cookie Mountain
The oddest major label debut of the year, with no compromises from moving up to the big leagues.
I Was a Lover
9 – The Strokes: First Impressions of Earth
Ok, I might be the only person who thinks that this is the best Strokes album, but it is. Honestly.

10 – Clipse: Hell Hath No Fury
For what seems to be 10 years in the making, the Clipse were well worth the wait. Minimalist hip-hop by the Neptunes at its best, dark and sneering.
Hello New World
11 – Mates of State: Bring It Back
Like U Crazy
12 – The Decemberists: The Crane Wife
The Shankill Butchers
13 – The Thermals: The Body, The Blood, The Machine
Here’s Your Future
14 – Jarvis Cocker: Jarvis
Baby’s Coming Back to Me

15 – Built to Spill: You in Reverse
Goin’ Against Your Mind
16 – Tilly & the Wall: Bottom of Barrels
Bad Education
17 – Bon Savants: Post Rock Defends the Nation
Between the Moon and the Ocean
18 – The Rakes: Capture/Release
19 – Tapes ‘n Tapes: The Loon
20 – Math & Physics Club: Math & Physics Club
April Showers

Honorable Mention
Johnny Cash: American V; Various: Dave Chapelle’s Block Party; Hot Chip: The Warning; Band of Horses: Everything All the Time; The Rapture: Pieces of The People We Love; Gothic Archies: Tragic Treasury; Jose Gonzalez: Veneer; Shake Some Action!: Shake Some Action!; Bonnie “Prince” Billy: The Letting Go; Various: Plague Songs