Today marks my eighth anniversary at M*tro Tr*nsit. It's by far the longest I've ever been employed at one place. And I still like going to work, even when I drive the 21, like today.
maybe I'll get to drive the Zamboni
Jeff has informed us that as soon he's done making his rink, he's going to host a boot hockey league for the other dogs in the neighborhood.
Dots connected and colored in by my nephew. Caption corrected by my brother. Enjoy.
the old hope-a-dope
I'd like someone to take a poll of those who voted for W and ask them the degree to which they regret voting for him. I know there are about fifteen people who still think he did a good job, but I suppose that's to be expected.
So today is out with President Tool, probably (hopefully!) the biggest idiot I'll know as president in my lifetime. (I wasn't sure we could top Bonzo, but we did!)
And it's in with President Hopey. Good luck, America. I hope this one works out better for us.
(thanks to kwatt for the links)
rev. dr. mlk, jr.
I missed the first couple minutes of the Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King, Jr.'s most famous speech on CNN this afternoon, but I watched the rest. Powerful, beautiful.
Earlier, I had chatted with my parents. I hadn't spoken with them at length since they took a road trip to Florida for Christmas. My dad reported his discomfort and concern with seeing large Confederate flags in public places as they traveled through the South.
We have a long way to go.
Well, I guess it's been almost a year since I last drove the 23. I drove three trips on it this morning.
For the most part, the 23 runs north-south between Uptown and 36th Street, east-west along 38th Street, north-south on 46th Avenue, and to and from St. Paul on 46th Street/Ford Parkway. When I started at Nicollet, I was always concerned that I would miss the right turn on 46th Avenue on the eastbound trip. It's just a regular intersection among a series of similar-looking intersections.
So, as I do in those situations, I picked out a visual cue to remind me to turn. It was a fairly unique-looking little blue house on the SW corner of the intersection.
This morning, as I motored along in the dark, waiting for the little blue house to appear, I had a moment of vivid confusion. I didn't know why I was confused, but I looked at the next street sign and it said 47th. Oops! I looked at my lone passenger and laughed. "I always thought I'd miss that turn one day!" She laughed. I went around the block and got back on course without missing a stop.
On my way back to Uptown, I reached that intersection and was, once again, confused. Something wasn't right. At all. Then I saw the problem. The little blue house was completely gone. In its place is a large beige house. New cue, I guess.
The time is long past for my annual list of favorite music from the past year. Possibly better late than never:
The Go Buy It Now Tier-
Mates of State - Re-Arrange Us. The kool kidz didn't seem to like this. It doesn't sound like the prevailing indie sound of the day. Instead, it's full of melodies and harmonies that will not go away and leave me alone. But this time, that's a good thing.
Sloan - Parallel Play. Super good rock and roll from Canada. Buy it; love it.
Vampire Weekend - s/t. I guess there's been some kind of backlash. It's really an excellent record and has gotten a lot of airplay in the Church/Camp house.
The You Should Buy It Tier-
Fleet Foxes- s/t
Eric Matthews- The Imagination Stage
Gary Louris- Vagabonds
Los Campesinos!- Hold On Now, Youngster
The Magnetic Fields- Distortion
The You Might Want To Buy It Tier-
Novillero- A Little Tradition
Bob Mould- District Line
Brian Wilson - That Lucky Old Sun
Supergrass- Diamond Hoo Ha
The What I Liked Pretty Well Tier-
Becky Schlegel- For All The World To See
Alejandro Escovedo- Real Animal
Destroyer- Trouble in Dreams
She & Him- Volume One
Wire- Object 47
It's kind of a lackluster list again this year and I'm not even going to mention the piles of records that bored me.
this is the modern world
My parents get series tickets for the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. When they are out of town, I often get to use them. Kassie and I got tickets for last night as part of our Christmas gift.
First, we went to dinner at Little Szechuan, and it was really, really good. Kassie's been trying to get me there, but you know, it's in St. Paul, so that means fueling the car, packing a lunch, etc.
Kassie had the Fish Fillet in Spicy Tofu Broth. It came with a huge pile of peppers on top, and it was seriously spicy. She loved it. I had the tiniest sample, making sure to keep the peppers to a minimum, because, well, my stomach was not in greatest mood.
I got the Sweet Sour Scallops. They were much better than I expected. I figured they'd be good, but they were super tasty.
We got to the Ordway, I used the restroom (because my stomach was not in the greatest mood), and we found our seats. They were about fifty feet from stage left. We caught a part of the International Chamber Orchestra Festival.
The first piece was Sir Michael Tippett's Concerto for Double String Orchestra. It sounded like a film score. Nice, but kind of boring.
The second piece was Plain Old Ralph Vaughan Williams's Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis, which sounded OK from the men's room, where I was busy yakking up my dinner (because my stomach was not in the greatest mood).
I felt better, and it was time for the intermission.
The third piece was Not Sir Either Béla Bartók's Music for Strings, Percussion, and Celesta. You know who's dead? Béla Lugosi. Yeah, this sounded like the soundtrack to a horror film. I liked it pretty well, I guess, but it was a little hard to take seriously.
And really, that's the thing with modern orchestral music. I didn't necessarily get the "Look at Me, I'm A Super Modern Composer, Look How Crazy This Can Sound" vibe last night, but I don't really enjoy Modern music the same way I enjoy music from the Baroque, Classical, or early Romantic periods. It was fun, though, and made for an enjoyable night.
And it's a good thing my mom wasn't there to hear it. I don't think she would have enjoyed it much at all.
go away, sleazebag!