Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Two-Thousand and Fine 

Best Junk from 2009:

The Boy

My darlin'

Just like Fight Club, only you can't talk about it.

Cleveland Rocks
Spent a perfect weekend in Cleveland with some bros. The Mexican food. The Christmas Story House. The Five o'Clock. The greasy breakfasts. Brendan's hangover cocktail. The ambulance outside of the Thai place. Much needed.

Makers Mark & Zacapa 23 Rum.
Not mixed together! Jesus, you freaks. What's wrong with you? Although...No. Nevermind.

Tivo HD
Two cable cards, no waiting. Although embarassingly 90% of the shows on there are Disney Playhouse shows. In HD though. So we've got that going for us.

Organic cotton t-shirts
I am sensitive and worth it.

The Dodge Challenger SRT
As you know, I don't go in much for cars, but this return to '70s muscle really caught my eye.

The Blue Tractor
They have this little frosty refridgerated shelf at the bar where you can put your can of Blatz and keep it cool. Real cool.

I sat next to Rob Reiner at lunch.
"I'll have what he's having"

My new Blackberry
Work gave me a Blackberry Pearl to replace my clunky 8703e. Night and day I tell you. I actually like this one.

Went to the Kalahari Waterpark with the fam.
Good times.

We went to Slows and then a Tigers game on our anniversary.
Quite possibly the perfect afternoon.

Seeing Kinky Friedman's imaginary loft in NYC.

I was a big fan of the Canadian Club "Damn Right Your Dad Drank It" ads this year.
I also like these just as much.

Gabe, Rex, and Owen
Kids in America. Whoa-oh

Playing Beatles Rock Band outdoors at Dan's house.
My buddy set up a projector in his backyard and a bunch of us played Beatles Rock Band and then watched Wet Hot American Summer like a for real Drive In movie.

The Kodak zi8 hi-def pocket camera
Cheaper and better than the Flip camera. Now capturing my son's pores one at a time.

Some of my favorite musicians are in this band. And Brian Raleigh as well.

Playing banjo in the studio.
Thanks, Jer

Going to see Old Timey Baseball at Greenfield Village with The Tobeys.

Teh Intarwebs

There. I said it. I like Facebook. Anybody else out there? The thing I really like about it is that I can keep up to date on my friends activities so that when we see each other face-to-face we can skip the "So what have you been up to?" phase of the conversation and just hang out.

This website more than any other gets my vote for most useful online music site this year. I blathered on about it here at nauseating length.

Random hilarity from TextsFromLastNight.com, FMyLife.com, SorryIMissedYourParty.com, and ShitMyDadSays.

and really just the Frazetta contest they held.
And really just the one photo.

This Louis CK clip on Conan is something I keep coming back to.
He really nails a lot of points about how impatient we are with technology.
It is 4 minutes. You can spend 4 minutes.

An interview with Time Magazine about the clip here.

Happy in Paraguay
A guy makes up stuff it looks like the Star Treks are saying

Kiss re-dubbed
Fit your Pants! Nobody's got Shampoo.

Kittens Inspired By Kittens

David After Dentist

Billy Mays Kaboom Redub.

Put Some Cheese on It

Drunkest Guy Ever Goes for More Beer

Fishing Show Bloopers


This Grooveshark Playlist has my best tunes from 2009.
You can just play them all for free without giving anybody your credit card number or even your e-mail address.

Neko Case - "Middle Cyclone"
Chilling, Brawny and Bleeding
The bad news is that this is only a pretty average Neko Case album, making it only really really really good (as opposed to really really really really good like her other albums). "Magpie to the Morning" is an incredible 3 minutes of music, plus she covers a Harry Nilsson tune which gets me right in the heartstrings. Listen/Hear.

Tinted Windows - "Tinted Windows"
The bands that you loved were just haircuts and jackets
The band has just the right blend of cute/ugly members, walls of distorted guitars, plenty of treble, teenaged love songs (granted, written by men in their late thirties), sweetly disposable pop tunes and hooks for a million miles. Plus, having an actual member of Cheap Trick can't hurt. Listen/Hear.

Bullion - "Pet Sounds in the Key of Dee"
Remixed, Re-thought and Stitched Back Together
Bullion took some Beach Boys master tapes and some J Dilla beats and tied them all together in a manner above and beyond most basement mash-ups. Listen/Hear

The XX - "The XX"
Crisp, Cool and New Wave in a Way that is not Ashamed to be New Wave.
These kids have some Cure records and some New Order records. No, wait. They don't have the records, they just have the MP3s. Listen/Hear

My Morning Jacket - "It Still Moves"
Neil Young in a Corn Silo with plenty of LSD and Pink Floyd and Lynyrd Skynyrd Records.
I came at this album a bit sideways. Several years after it was releassed, I fell in love with MMJ's more recent albums and then backtracked to this one. Standout Track: "I Will Sing You Songs" which Henry says sounds like the airport during the vocal harmony sections. That is a compliment. He likes the airport. Listen/Hear

Andrew Bird - "Noble Beast"
Whistley, Warm and The Soundtrack to the Middle School Crush on Your Lab Partner
Andrew Bird has gone from being the guy who played violin on Squirrel Nut Zippers albums to be a terrific off-kilter songwriter and a fine vocalist. Nice work, buddy. Listen/Hear

Pete Yorn & Scarlett Johansson - "Break Up"
Dreamy, Fuzzy and Sleep-Addled
While I was no fan of her album of Tom Waits recordings, the Pete Yornieness of this album really helps her out a bunch, making a decent long EP of cute retro-feeling love/unlove songs. "Relator" is the standout track. Listen/Hear

Emitt Rhodes - "The Emitt Rhodes Recordings 1969-1973"
Smiling, Piano and Nilsson Haunting
My prior Emitt Rhodes exposure was "Lullabye" on the Royal Tennenbaums soundtrack: A sweet love song which is repeated in myriad variations with different twists on this 2 disc boxed set. Listen/Hear

Phoenix - "Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix"
Bright, Boisterous and French (not that you would know it)
These guys first showed up for me on the "Lost In Translation" soundtrack. I knew I would dig 'em, just never dug deep. Thanks to my Sister calling me out of the blue to tell me to tune in, I am hooked. Listen/Hear

the Avett Brothers - "I and Love and You"
Rusty, Rustic and Rusted
Ok fuckers. How have I never heard of these guys before Brian Raleigh wordlessly put them into his top 2009 playlist? I'm disappointed in all of you who knew about these guys and didn't even think I might be innerested. Serious. Listen/Hear

The Airborne Toxic Event - "The Airborne Toxic Event"
Brash, Urgent and Sodden
Although this came out in 2007, it took a Letterman appearance and a phone call from my Sister to clue me in. The lyrics to "Sometime Around Midnight" makes me wish I was underage again. Listen/Hear

The Beatles - "Stereo Boxed Set"
"Guitar Groups are on the Way Out"
This boxed set spent a lot of time in the REM Sleep of my mind over the past 15+ years. Thanks guys. Sounds good.


Spent a lot of summer afternoons watching Tigers games on the porch.
Piggly Wiggly
I put the sound on the speakers out there and then watch through my front window. Occasionally with a beer.

The IT Crowd
Totally fun BBC show about IT nerds working in the basement of an office building. Start here and then here.
Apparently there was going to be an American version on NBC in 2007 but it didn't make it. That may be for the best.

Even though they replaced Kari Byron with somebody while she was squeezing out her baby, it is still some of the best 35 science-related minutes on TV.

Mad Men
So many shows end their seasons with a cliffhanger where something terrible is going to happen. Mad Men decided to end their season where something spectacular could happen. Shut the door, have a seat. Yes, thank you I will.

30 Rock
Oh lord, the one where Liz had the discount Lasik eye surgery and then cried out of her mouth? [at about 18 minutes in]. Man that's good TV.

Sigh. Yet another Joss Whedon series that started mediocre, got really interesting and then got yanked from the air. Plus, I thought that Miracle Laurie was a babe.

Classic Albums on VH1
I am addicted to the 'Classic Albums' series on VH-1. Cream's "Disraeli Gears?" OK. Maiden's "Number of the Beast?" Wouldn't miss it. Jay-Z's "Reasonable Doubt?" Try me. "Who's Next?" Should be mandatory before graduation in high schools across the country. Film a fat old white guy on the far side of a mixing board and you have my attention for a thousand hours. Interview David Fricke = The same result.

The Cinema:

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince



Star Trek

It Might Get Loud
Jack White is a weirdo, but when he gets into the room with Jimmy Page (and The Edge to some degree) you can see the eager fanboy within just itching to get out.

Book Learnin':

A Dirty Job and Fool by Christopher Moore.
I will read anything by this man. Witty, clever and fantastic in every sense of the word.

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke
Somebody described this to me as "Harry Potter for grown ups" and I could have kept reading it for a thousand more pages.

The Prisoner of Vandam Street by Kinky Friedman
This was mostly fun because I read it in New York where I was in an office a half-block from Vandam Street.

Child 44 by Tom Rob Smith
I don't really go in for mysteries or Stalinist Russia, but this one had some nifty turns.

Bad Juju

Jay Bennett of Wilco died. As did Blossom Dearie, Dom Deluise, Mark Fidrych and Mary Travers.
Also to a less impactful extent: Michael Jackson.

Getting sick on vacation.
We went to Hilton Head on vacation and I got sick to the point where I was really trying to have fun but I was not actually having fun. Then Hank puked in the rental car, Penny did not want to fly back and then I totally fucked up Mother's Day. I would like for the last half of that week to be stricken from the record.

Through no real fault of my own I got lost on the New Jersey transit system.
Not real helpful, those TV monitors that say that they're going to Newark Airport but then don't actually go there at random times in the day.

Imeem got bought by MySpace, rendering any of my former links to songs in blog posts dead.
This page has a sad example of what I am talking about.

My Scrobbles are all messed up:
Somehow the Last.FM scrobbling on my iPod is all goofed up.
This is one of the WhiteWhineiest things I have to complain about.

I really feel as though DataWhat was lacking in content and actual posts this year. My bad. You can blame Facebook.
In fact, I didn't post at all in October. This is quite a precipitous drop from when I would post every day and ask guest bloggers to fill in when I went on vacation.

Sorry bros, I tried it, but it just isn't doing it for me.




Thanks Innernets and those involved with my life.

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