The Bren's Playlist

The Bren received a "Summer Mix" CD in the mail last week.

This translates into: I'm basically listening to the following three songs "over and over":

Slow Ride - Foghat* - "I like this one"
The Stroke - Billy Squire - "I like this one"
Just a Kid - Wilco - "This one is funny"

Kids today!

[*note: the live version of "Slow Ride" is a classic, but this is the studio version, so keep the El Camino parked in the garage]



When You Wish...

Twinkle Twinkle:

The movie

[once there, click on "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" and wait a minute]


See? Actually 3.46

Long Story Short

"Imagine executing EVERY idea you ever had.... All of them.

Do all ideas. That's what I learned last night."




Who Says...

...I can't rock the power poses in a dress?



I’m Writing All the Stuff I Want to Interject into this Conversation:

Lunch, July 19, 2006

- Cult
- How $ to live?
- Cuba!
- Religious groups
- Born again?
- Mennonite guy
- Short or long prayer strings?
“American through the eyes of the lord”
- Finger painting
- Reconciliation
- I’m having a conflict you can resolve
- Conflict creation
- Your hair is longer
- Portable



Ah, I've been asked to write about being black. In other words, "What is it like being black?"

[Note: Some people notice that I'm black; mostly because of my skin color.]

Being black in America. Being black in the corporate world. Being a black artist. Being a black dad. Being a black musician (that doesn't necessarily play 'black music'). Being black GTI (tm) driver/owner. Being a black citizen of Kentlands. Being a black homeowner. Being a black reader. Being a black communicator. Being half black. Being a black Jew. Being a black Californian. Being a black Marylander. Being a black lover. Being a black member of a board of directors. Being a black voter. Being a black non-democrat. Being a black non-republican. Being a black nigger. Being a black Oreo (tm). Being a black uncle Tom. Being a black writer. Being a non-threatening black. Being a black thug. Being too black. Being not black enough. Being a black college graduate. Being a black friend. Being black with a passport. Being black on the Internet. Being black and not knowing how to dance. Being...black.


What a stupid fucking question!



Context: Starting a suburban-professional office worker gang. "Let's get tattoos!"

Feedback: "Ah, if you want to wear blings, we can do that instead of tattoos."

Blings. He's from another country.


Context: Short debate about how long I might live. I suggested 75 years.

Feedback: "Bullshit! You're gonna live forever (I'd say 95 or so), I can tell. You're fierce...."

Fierce. I like that. Tough w/o being so overly macho.





Verb: to close a computer screen or window to prevent other people from viewing; preferably before they can see what was on your screen.
  • Teens at Home (viewing porn):
"Dude, your mom's coming, click-down, click-down!"
  • In the Office (viewing porn):
"Ha! I saw you click-down ESPN. What's the score?"
  • After Work (viewing porn):
"Hey, did you just click-down? Were you checking your work mail?"

Ugly Duckling

Leveraging the Low-Hanging Fruit

Email Received: I learned a new word today. I've seen/heard it a number of times over the last months, and didn't know what it meant. I finally remembered to look it up. It turns out that its actually pretty useful. Maybe you already know it.

It’s kinda cool!

Penultimate: next to last

Email Sent (Ty): Yes. I've seen it, understood it in context, but never given it much thought. Kind of a $5 word. Very grad-school-y (or sociological). Seems a bit hyped when you could say, “next to last.” But, yeah, shit. Good word. Gives away one's SES, for sure. Strategically placed, certainly a “value-added” word.

Email Received: And, actually, involves more syllables than, "next to last." Interesting.

Email Sent (Ty): It’s a job interview word. Not as pretentious as "vis a vis" - not as B-school as “leverage” - not as trite as the bad-corporate “low hanging fruit.”

“Penultimate” is fairly brainy.


Fool On The Hill

I am no longer a Democrat. Nor am I a Republican. Let’s clear that up from the start. I don’t buy into that blue vs. red state nonsense. My belief structure isn’t controlled by anyone else. I’m no party-liner. I figure out what my beliefs are on my own, for the most part. Oh, there are ways to influence my beliefs, however. I’m all for a compelling argument.

So, perhaps it is really no surprise that I’m all for Hillary Clinton to be our next president. When I test float this notion, I get one of two responses: 1) People ask, indignantly, “why?” 2) I’m fed the Republican spin-house lines, “Hillary can’t win. She’s unelectable. She’s too divisive.” How do I know this is coming from the Republican camp? Well, I hear my conservative friends saying it. I read it on the conservative blogs. I understand that our boy, Rush, has used the line. Repeatedly. If they really believed she couldn’t – wouldn’t win – their strategy would be to support her candidacy -- to help the unelectable get the nomination. Oh yeah, before I forget, she was purportedly unelectable as senator for New York too. Whatever, she won with approximately 55% of the vote. Sorry Rick Lazio, you got whipped!

Oh what does she stand for? Hell, I don’t know. I don’t really care either. Blah-blah-blah, she supports the war, she doesn’t have opinions on anything, and she’s trying to prove a point. So. Go read all about her for yourself (and maybe you’ll see through the propaganda). Read, people, read for crying out loud. Think for yourselves and stop being the mouthpiece for the Republican spin machine. That behavior is just weak.

Senator Clinton is qualified to be president. She knows politics. She knows the system. She knows congress. She knows people. She knows how to get (and lose) topic support. She’s expert at all issues important to the U.S. And, most importantly, she’s Teflon. She’s Kevlar. She’s Teflar or Kevlon. What can you say about her that hasn’t been said? Uh, that she killed someone? They tried that. Uh, that she’s a lesbian? Tried that too. That she’s too liberal? Good luck. She’s tougher than you’ll ever be, my friends. She’s a survivor.

Remember the 1993 White House healthcare fiasco? That Hillary was diving into issues to complex for the little First Lady? That she hadn’t a clue? Well, what is on or near the top of every American’s list of concerns right about now? Maybe we should fault her for being too advanced; too ahead of her time. Just ask Newt.

She’s done her job. Her record is solid. She is clearly repositioned as a new centrist. Big whoop, right? And, she can locate Darfur on a map.

Anyway, all I’m saying is stop buying the talking points and explore the issues yourself and get over your hang-ups. Hillary is a winner – and we all know this – she’s also very competent, and she is probably the most qualified person in the country to be president. This is just too easy a statement given our current leadership, but I do believe this.

Too divisive? Oh, that’s right. Bush is a uniter, not a divider. Yeah, I guess she hasn’t a chance. Wake the hell up, people!


All Our Art and Shit...

On 7/10/06, Rich wrote:

All our music and shit...

No one gets it.

No one.

On 7/10/06, Ty replied:


That was my initial reaction. More thoughtfully Zen-full than cynical or acerbic. On the other hand, I'm not sure if your comment is one of pride and accomplishment or one of frustration and dreams dashed a la Villa Rosie. I'm guessing it a mix of the two with a skew toward boastfully indignant. That I understand.

I too love that the art we create shoots so far over most heads that accessibility is grossly limited. But, it’s frustrating that the typical music/arts enthusiast is so numb to difficulty, originality, and interaction that our music and shit is not only dismissed, but also generally unprocessed. It doesn’t penetrate. For me there’s more of a generalized frustration that we live in a culture that hasn’t evolved past corporate force-feeding in regards the arts. But, hey, that capitalism, right? That’s showbiz, folks!

I think it was Jenkins in the WashPost that commented on the insider-ness of it. That was cool, something written about us that we liked. Jenkins gets it, Nuttycombe gets it, Marcus gets it, Wave gets it. There are a few others who get it (I'm sure I'm leaving someone important out). I think Daniel gets it for the most part. Maybe it’s not to the level that we get it, but so what? There are minds open to something different, something intensely personal and fulfilling that it doesn’t matter. And, that is good.

Now, “getting it” and “creating it” are wholly exclusive. Just because Marcus understands the mindset that creates this noise doesn’t mean he can or is willing to create it himself. Wave? Yes. Chuck? No way. The difference is we let go, we stopped caring about what comes next. We make it and divorce it for the most part. I cannot see past the end product anymore. People who suggest I do are returned blank stares. You know this, my friend.

Frustrations aside. Good for us. We win. Evolution is a motherfucker. All our art and shit…no one gets it. No one. And if I have anything to say about it, no one will because I will forever refuse to explain it.


Chuck Jong Illin'

How did it take me so long to figure this out?



Not Ask Why

Our good friend Ty
is experiencing a contact high
better not ask why
when you hear him sigh

- [The] Zuheir Al-Faqih


Mope w/Busted Lip

Old Ass Dog -- New Ass Tricks

I went to a show last week. I don't go to many shows any more. You'd think I knew it all by now, right? Nope. Surprises still lurk around random corners.

The funny thing is the last few shows I attended all expectations were shattered given that my expectations were so low. You'd think I knew it all by now, right? Nope.

Fiery Furnaces in Concert with Man Man > 9:30 Club > Washington, D.C. > June 30, 2006

Now I want to play; tour again. The April shows in Berkeley taught me that I still could do it. You'd think I knew it all by now, right?