Friday, July 31, 2009

Fruit Bats

I'm digging the new Fruit Bats album, "Ruminant Band" on Sub Pop. File it under indie folk pop, with a small touch of southern classic rock.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

NPR's best of the first half of 2009

According to NPR's "All Songs Considered" this is the best of the year so far

Best songs: (Listen to these tracks on their blog)
1. "My Girls" Animal Collective
2. "Two Weeks" Grizzly Bear
3. "Blood Bank" Bon Iver
4. "The Rake's Song" The Decemberists
5. "Lisztomania" Phoenix
6. "Zero" Yeah Yeah Yeahs
7. "This Tornado Loves You" Neko Case
8. "Sleepyhead" Passion Pit
9. "Laughing With" Regina Spektor
10. "The Wanting Comes In Waves/Repaid" The Decemberists

Best Albums:
1. Merriweather Post Pavilion by Animal Collective
2. The Hazards of Love by The Decemberists
3. Veckatimest by Grizzly Bear
4. Middle Cyclone by Neko Case
5. Wilco (The Album) by Wilco
6. Noble Beast by Andrew Bird
7. Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix by Phoenix
8. It's Blitz! by Yeah Yeah Yeahs
9. Dark Was The Night by Various Artists
10. Bitte Orca by Dirty Projectors

I'm feeling pretty good because I own nearly all of these albums (thanks, KCSB!) My votes were for Animal Collective, Grizzly Bear, Phoenix, Passion Pit, and "Dark was the Night" so I'm glad they all made the list. The other albums are really good, too. I like the Yeah Yeah Yeahs but am pretty sure they crossed over to "alternative" radio. And I always felt bad about it, but I kinda can't stand The Decemberists. It's his voice.

#1 Song - Animal Collective's "My Girls" from Merriweather Post Pavilion

Sunday, July 26, 2009


I head about Craig Damrauer's New Math site from my friend in DC

When I was three years old, about the time my younger sister was born, I had an invisible friend named Jessica. We spent a lot of time playing together and I got very demanding when my family wouldn't take her seriously. My mom still remembers how I forced her to set a plate for Jessica when we all sat down for dinner.

I've moved four times since Jessica, very different times in my life, very different sets of visible, real-life friends. Right now, I'm lucky to have a lot of close friends in Santa Barbara. The really real kind of friends, who still like me even when I'm at my worst.

I always assumed friendships have an expiration date, that at some point you outgrow each other. Now I'm not so sure.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Lonesome George

He's in the Guinness Book of World Records as the "the rarest living creature."

Lonesome George is the last known individual of the Pinta Island Tortoise, a subspecies of tortoise native to the Galápagos Islands. He's supposedly 100 years old. He was discovered in 1971, and since has lived in Galapagos National Park under the care of scientists. For years, there were many unsuccessful attempts to get him to reproduce with similar subspecies female tortoises. This week it was reported that Lonesome George, the loneliest creature in the world, may finally become a father.

If he can do it, maybe there's hope for me and Brenda Morgenstern after all.


I started watching "Rhoda" on Hulu this week. It's really good! Julie Kavner is precious as Rhoda's sister Brenda. She out-Rhoda's Valerie Harper's Mary Tyler Moore-era Rhoda. With even lower self-esteem and more self-deprecating humor. I can't get enough.
. . . .
Rhoda: We're not talking about love, we're talking about sex.
Brenda: Please! *covering ears* I don't want to hear they're not the same thing! I'm still getting over the 'what fun it is to be a woman' hoax. (pause) Are you still upset?
Rhoda: Yeah.
Brenda: Then let's eat something.
. . . .
Rhoda: Why am I always waiting for him to drop in on me? Why can't I drop in on him?
Brenda: Yeah, I was thinking of dropping in on some guy the other night.
Rhoda: Yeah? Why didn't you?
Brenda: I didn't know anybody.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Albert Eintstein quotes

Art and science of the strongest motives that lead men to art and science is escape from everyday life with its painful crudity and hopeless dreariness, from the fetters of one's own ever-shifting desires. A finely tempered nature longs to escape from the personal life into the world of objective perception and thought.

The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed.
Perception of time
People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present, and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.
Compassion for the Earth
A human being is a part of a whole, called by us 'universe', a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest... a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.
My all-time favorites
Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts.

A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

On being small

I found this animated elephant image on my harddrive, a remnant of some late night Wikipedia binge. The images was taken by Eadweard Muybridge in the late 1800's, using a photographic technique that predated motion picture film.

I keep waiting for the elephant to stop.

Lately I move in tiny circles between home, the lab, the bar, and the radio station. I have this urge to live a bigger life but I'm not sure what that looks like yet. Maybe I need to be like the elephant, and keep walking a little longer in one direction.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

I'm a fan!

Staten Island's P.S. 22 Fifth Grade Chorus are amazing. Check out their blog.

"I'll Be Your Mirror" by Velvet Underground + Nico

I also recommend their versions of:
- "Seaweed Song" by Passion Pit
- "Joga" originally by Bjork
- "Pictures of You" originally by The Cure

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Sarah Haskins makes me LOL

Sarah Haskins hosts a hilarious segment called "Target Women" on some show called infoMania. Each episode pokes fun at the way marketers advertise for women. I crack up every time.

In her own words: I think they're trying to toe a very fine line between seeming "with it" in terms of modern female roles and responsibilities while trying to do the tricky dance of selling us products that are related to much more traditional things: cleaning, cooking for your family, being a wifey… Hard to do both and not seem insane or ridiculous.

Yogurt ads

Lots more here.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


I think my dream job is in radio. For reals.

I'm listening to these podcasts a lot lately.

The Moth
15 minute stories read aloud without notes. Great for car trips or walks.

The Moth, a not-for-profit storytelling organization, was founded in New York in 1997 by poet and novelist George Dawes Green, who wanted to recreate in New York the feeling of sultry summer evenings on his native St. Simon's Island, Georgia, where he and a small circle of friends would gather to spin spellbinding tales on his friend Wanda's porch.

All Songs Considered
30 minute show dedicated to new music and reviews. Lots of great recommendations.

Every week, host Bob Boilen and producer Robin Hilton listen to hundreds of new albums to find the artists or songs worth getting excited about, whether it's the latest Swedish pop band, a hip hop artist going ambient, or a singer-songwriter with a twisted new take on love. Sometimes, artists and music critics are invited to have a turns as guest DJ during the 30 minute program.