Find of the Week

December 12, 2008 at 4:27 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Credit goes to Aquarium Drunkard, an MP3 Blog and fellow vocal proponents of The Hold Steady, for posting this wonderful cover of my favorite Magnetic Fields song “Strange Powers” by my favorite Indie-darlings The Shins!

A very close cover that carries enough personality of the Shins to really make it listenable in a way that these sometimes gimmiky in-joke covers seldom are.

If you dig either band, go give it a listen!

6-6-6 Meme

December 9, 2008 at 3:27 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

It’s Joule!
Originally uploaded by OctopusHat.

Micheal Tagged me to participate in the 6-6-6 flickr meme. You look at the 6th page of your photostream, post the 6th picture on your blog, and tag 6 new participants.

This photo was taken a couple months ago on Annika’s 1st Birthday party! Joule was a dear friend who I met in my first weeks at UC Santa Cruz. I kinda always felt like she was a big-sister during the sometimes difficult first year of living on campus. Since she lived in the apartment (that would then later be occupied by Andrew and Jason!) we would watch the X-Files there every week.

This was this first time I’d seen her in probably 6 years and she had moved across the country (and back) and become a Doctor in the meantime. Jules and I unfortunately had to run shortly after this picture was taken, but I hope to get a better chance to catch-up sometime soon.

As for the 6 people I tag with this meme: Jules, John Forrest, Iason, Matt H, Turtle and Jodi


::To Read::

September 15, 2008 at 9:44 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

As of this morning my reading list is (in no real order.)

  • Anathem
  • While I’m at it, the entire 2500 pages of the Baroque Cycle
  • The Fountain TPB
  • Watchman TPB
  • Re-read the last 16 issues of Transmet
  • The 4-Hour Work Week
  • Re-read of Getting Things Done
  • The Art of Project Management
  • Re-Read Spook Country
  • Full Light, Full Steam
  • Dogs in the Vineyard
  • and finally slog-through the last 400+ pages of A Feast For Crows

Music in the Air

September 12, 2008 at 1:16 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

A dull and moist grey sky hangs over Los Angeles today.  It very nearly feels autumnal (though that could also be the head-cold talking,) and I thought I would take a moment to recap the “Verive Summer Concert Series” for 2008.

It began in May with a surprise Raconteurs show at the Henry Fond Music Box; a venue far too small to contain the awe-inspiring power of Jack White.  Jules and I fought our way to about a dozen “rows” from the stage and fought the heat and doucheary to be completely overwhelmed by the music.  An amazing show that converted Julie to a full-fledged disciple of Mr White’s awesomeness.

A couple of weeks later we saw the cartoon-band Dethklok from the Adult Swim show “Metalacolypse” play the Wiltern.  Brandon Small, lead vocals, guitar, and songwriter fronted the band and was backed up by some veterans of the heavy metal scene while projected ‘toons of the real/fake band were shown, including some amusing between-song vignettes.  We also caught most of the opening act, Chimera’s set.  A really fun show that fell somewhat out of our concert comfort zone.  The crowd was filled with more metal-heads that I had expected, having anticipated that the scene would be more hipster-geek chic.

We had a month or so off before catching The Hold Steady play the Avalon just before my birthday.  They put on an amazing and energetic show that really showcased their ability to captivate a crowd.  Jules really enjoyed the show and now counts herself as apart of the “Unified Scene.”  We both had so much fun that we bought tickets to see them play the Wiltern in November!  If you’re  in LA and dig rock and roll I recommend you get tickets!

A few weeks later Jules was able to score some tickets to see the Young Dubliners open for Jethro Tull at the Greek Theater.  We had quite an adventure that night involving the hospitality suite, sitting in different rows of Section A (the first time we’d ever had tix in sec A at the greek!) and a crazy cab ride home with a ex-hippie from Burbank.  Wild.  Jethro Tull still brought the rock though!

Lastly we had the long-anticipated Radiohead show at the Hollywood Bowl.  Jules’ gift to me for my 30th birthday!  This was my 3rd time seeing them play and was quite a different show that the previous two.  We also we not used to seeing bands play to nearly 20,000 people.  Thom and crew had no problems though and kept the usually lackadaisical LA crowed into the music for the 2+ hour set.  The show had one of the best light-shows that I’ve ever seen as well.  A memorable night!

In a couple weeks we’ll close out the season the way we started it when we see the Raconteurs play the Greek theater.  We actually have ticket to BOTH nights of shows and will mark the first time I’ve ever seen an act play two consecutive nights!

I got Tagged?

September 4, 2008 at 10:10 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Nearly a year ago, Michael over at Crufbox tagged me with a Meme started by some guy I don’t know asking for the last 5 songs purchased on the iTunes music store.   I’m not entirely sure how I missed this as I remember reading his post about it.  In fact the only way I discovered this was by seeing a very old incoming link in my WordPress dashboard (which I obviously never visit.) So, 11.5 months later, here is my reply to the tag:

It turns out the last 5 songs I bought were all early album tracks from Jethro Tull in preparation for seeing them play the Greek Theater a couple of weeks ago.

A more interesting answer would probably be what the last 5 songs that I purchased were when I was actually TAGGED with this Meme…  But I think that data might be lost to the ether as we’ve had a Harddrive crash and system restore on one machine where our iTunes lib lives and of course I left my old job where the other lived…  I’ll check the iPod for songs added around that time when I’m next in my car.

I’m not sure what the protocol for reviving a long-dead (?) meme is, but I’m going to throw out some tags anyway!  I’d tag my wife, but her answer would be the same as mine, and I’d tag Matt, but I know that he doesn’t listen to music (!?) and the whole new-dad thing probbaly wouldn’t leave him time for memes.  So how’s about:  Cath, Jodi, and Matthew.

Wha? I have a Blog??

September 4, 2008 at 9:33 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments

So yeah… I prettymuch forgot about this…  Sad really.

Though my gmail signature is still points here.

Maybe I should update?

Is anyone out there?

My Wife, The Rock&Roll Bean Counter

February 14, 2008 at 12:01 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

I love my wife, she is a nerd.

She often tells accountant jokes. Accountant jokes all have the same punch line: “General Ledger.”

This morning I got an instant message from her:

julieverive (11:52:09 AM): omg, i just got a new adding machine. it is cool

Today is her 2 year anniversay of starting at her firm.  She started there, 3 days after leaving Borders, as a receptionist and she is now an Assistant Bookeeper with some heavy duty clients.  I am SO proud of her!

Way to go Jules!  You fucking ROCK!


February 7, 2008 at 5:58 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

I’m almost uncomfortable with how well the author NAILS a lot of the inner-workings of my mind:

The Nerd Handbook

I Once Was Lost

January 31, 2008 at 5:24 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

After 8 months on hiatus ABC’s Lost returns to TV tonight!

So set those TiVos:  8pm for the 1 hour 3-season recap, and 9pm for the premier that I’ve heard will blow our mind-holes.

It’s the best show left on TV, so don’t miss it.


January 24, 2008 at 1:09 pm | Posted in Media | 15 Comments

A friend’s 16-year-old brother recently called Cloverfield the best movie he has ever seen, which of course is not true for me, but I can certainly see where he is coming from. It is refreshing for a film that is as hyped, as slickly marketed, as talked about, and that opens as big as Cloverfield did to not end up a disappointing work devoid of all merit beyond being a pop cultural phenomena. It is a visceral and exciting bit of filmmaking that leverages the culture of young Americans (youtube, melodrama, the angst and confusion of post-9/11 life) to tell a monster-eats-Manhattan story in a fresh way. The films verite style works really well and does not feel gimmicky or contrived but rather genuinely increases the tension and creepiness of the story. It certainly is one of the better examples of 1st person perspective working in cinema that I can think of. I’ve also heard the film called a “one trick pony,” and to be fair it does feel that way at times but when the trick works as well as the obfuscating camera-work in Cloverfield does how many more tricks do you need? But there are a few others up Cloverfield’s sleeves, perhaps not tricks as much as conventions and gotchyas, be enough to keep you huddled in your seat and ready to jump.

The films flaws, first in mind being the horror-film stupid characters, were down-played enough to not impact my enjoyment of the legitimate scares which come, more often than not, through the films reference to one of the most horrifying moments of our real lives. I speak, of course, of 9/11. Not including the Hollywood pictures about 9-11, none of which I have seen, Cloverfield deals with the horror and anxiety of the attacks more directly and better than any film in recent memory. I can only imagine the impact it has on the teenaged populace that the film was marketed so heavily towards. My friend’s brother was 8 or 9 when the towers fell. Certainly old enough to realize that a momentous evens had occurred that would change his life, but I don’t know how much understanding a 9-year-old could have as to why zealots flew planes into our buildings or how exactly things were going to change. Hell, it is hard enough for adults to understand, as the war in Iraq will attest to. Then to spend nearly half your life living in “post 9-11 society” only to be confronted by a monster movie that frames that tragedy in a way that is both cinematically novel, as well as in your own generation’s visual language (again: DV, Youtube, etc,) must have been extremely powerful. And clearly it has resonated very strongly with the teens that I’ve talked to about it.

And that is obviously the true strength of the film. Not the ‘cheep’ scares, rare gory moment (though those were all extremely effective,) or even impressive VFX monster but the perspective it offers on such a culturally significant event. Monster Movies have always been about our fears as any Essay on Godzilla will tell you. It is important to note that Cloverfield doesn’t “play off” of 9-11 or “subconsciously evoke” it, as I’ve read in other review, but rather trades in the fears, horror, insecurity and confusion of 9-11. While the monsters origins are clearly stated in Godzilla, the ‘whys and hows’ of the giant and horrible monster that rises from the sea in Cloverfield are hardly touched on, and frankly don’t really matter. It is the destruction and sorrow left in its wake that is important. A direct reflection of our paranoia that amorphous and poorly defined terrorists could strike anywhere, at anytime, using any one of a number of horrible weapons that the media shows us at every opportunity. This allusion to the millennium’s defining event is Cloverfield’s greatest strength and what will set it apart from the scads of monster blockbusters that will inevitably get produced once the WGA strike ends, as well as the best reason to go out and see it.

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