Friday, February 18, 2011


Probably unrelated to that video, here is an insightful piece (via britticisms) on Grammy reactions like a Who is Arcade Fire as a microcosm for "insisting that what you pay attention to really does define the world". Which is of course wrong, but hey, human nature. I am a unique snowflake and what I think must be of vital importance to everyone! On the other hand, self-centeredness is more palatable than things like this, cloaked in so many levels of winkling irony that it loses all meaning. Thus concludes the goats' Grammy coverage, forever.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

girl talk

At what point does a musical act go mainstream? It's impossible to be sure. A metric of placing bands on a "sell out" spectrum from say Yo La Tengo to Black Eyed Peas, sadly, does not exist. Perhaps someday some geek will develop a BCS-type system determined by the number of myspace friends a band has, how many Dave Matthews Band fan club members have heard one of their songs, gross ticket sales, venues they play, etc. But not yet, so whether a particular group or individual has achieved the level of ubiquity to have some stake in the popular consciousness is still a mystery. Also, I think these hypothetical sell-out rankings would have to occur outside the Internet. Because cult status is what the web is all about, fanaticism disguises magnitude, ardent supporters voice their opinions the loudest. Which is all "a way" of saying that I don't think Girl Talk is mainstream, despite their/his online pervasiveness when a new album is released.

Suppose that is what I was thinking about when I went to see Girl Talk at the Electric Factory in Philadelphia some time ago. We went what I like to call "Sinclair Style" which means showing up at a venue without tickets and running around like a maniac seeking good, legitimate tickets and maybe a half-drank mini-keg of Heineken. The thing to remember about "Sinclair Style" is that it is best attempted in the presence of Sinclair or a Sinclair-type figure, which means you yourself do not have to do much running around because he, being Sinclair, will be doing so himself and you can just sit in a bar around the corner and reflect on the obscenely sexual lies he told you on the drive into Philadelphia, in leiu of talking because of loudness of which the the bar is blaring Katy Perry and other undoubtedly mainstream acts. Or you could think about Katy Perry's boobs.

Anyway, yes, the show itself was fun. Like going to a club where they play Girl Talk and balloons fall from the ceiling. This video is a terrible but fair representation.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Most of the "web is killing writers' livelihoods" rants come predictably from the old guard—established journos at money-losing newspapers who are still under the illusion that written content has intrinsic monetary value. Like a lot of people, journalists confuse "use-value," i.e. the original, well-written and newsworthy article, with "market value," once measured in print advertisement dollars and now determined by the more economically unforgiving page-views. I've written about this before so I don't want to have to break it down again, but because publishing no longer requires a capital-heavy investment (the print press) which paid for itself by giving individual publishers an inherently large market share, the value of written content per se in the internet age has taken a nose dive. Magazines and newspapers now compete with a vast, free and self-published behemoth with millions of unpaid content producers, who sometimes aren't even aware they're producing content at all.

-replace "soccer" with "any subject at all" and this still works, mostly.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

A year after reading it, things I remember about 'Infinite Jest' (a partial list)

Quebecois wheelchair assassins

Repeated and varied descriptions of the largeness of Don Gately's head

A Las Vegas crooner became president, the first president to twirl his microphone during the state of the union or whatever its called in the book, because the USA, Canada and Mexico are some sort of unified political entity

Interlace entertainment/cartridges - essentially this is Netflix

Subsidized Time - i.e. The Year of the Depends Adult Undergarment

Ambiguity as to whether one character is deformed by beauty or acid

John "No Relation" Wayne

Microwave suicide

Waste disposal via trebuchet into the 'The Great Concavity'

'The Entertainment' being fatal in that no one can ever stop watching

Mario Incandenza is a homodontic midget

The reprehensible cocaine addict from the AA recovery house who kills dogs

A kid running around with a computer monitor smashed on his head, that they can't remove right away because of the sharp screen fragments proximity to his neck

Union of the Hideously and Improbably Deformed (U.H.I.D.)

Mount Dilaudid and Lake Urine

Monday, February 07, 2011


"Anyone that thinks that is an idiot and a communist."