Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Screw you Glee.


So I found this awesome bass in a guitar shop. I've been monkeying around with bass on a few UCB vids over the last year or so. I don't know how to play it, but I like it... So when I found this Epiphone Viola Bass for several hundred off retail, I couldn't resist. I figured I'd pack it along to our upcoming Portland UCB shindig and try it on a few numbers. then, I'd try a few bar gigs around here... everyone lets a bass player sit in. I'd get to play more often and not have to take center stage.

I got it home, learned a few blues grooves, and felt pretty snazzy about the purchase. Aside from Sir Paul, i've never really seen many folks with that shape and the floating bridge... I got to feeling I made a pretty classy purchase. I always thought they were pretty damn cool. It seemed nearly unique, special even.

And then it happened. I got a Facebook PM from some "friend" I don't actually know...

"KOOL new GLEE bass! I sooooo want one just like it ever since I saw it on Glee. You'll have to get the red bass cabinet amp thing too!"


You folks know me. Is there anything I have ever posted that suggests I enjoy, watch, am aware of, let alone strive to emulate Glee? That show, the few times I've seen it, registered in my brain as a toothache with auto-tune. I can assure you, I was not trying to pay homage to what I consider a song murdering pap-fest on (shiver) commercial network television. (Note: If you are not familiar with the television show Glee, I salute you - and warn you that Russ and/or Aldrine will be along shortly to fill you in on all the musical high-school hijinx...)

I thought I made myself clear over the years. I am a snob. A hateful, petty, pretentious snob. If you like it, I probably think it sucks. Hell, if you like it, and others like it, I probably think *you* suck.

So now, every time I play that thing... someone will mention Glee. Every time. Screw you Glee.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Yes but which spice are you?

Yesterday, I had an hour long round table discussion with the guys regarding this tough issue.  If we were to live the Spice Girls movie (and who wouldn't want to?), which spice would you be?  I'm thinking Alan would be Scary Spice,  Adelle would be Punch You in the Balls Spice, the Baron would be Delicate Spice, Booze would be Old Spice, Deach would be He Who Controls the Spice, Grumpy would be Dungeons N' Spice, Little6ster would be Smurfette Spice and I would most likely be Five Spice.  If I got any of that wrong, please correct me in the comments below.

Would this movie work?  Who could play the tour bus driver's part better than Meat Loaf?  Have we really run out of things to blog about?  Where is the infinite wisdom of Tony Robbins when you need him the most?

Monday, March 14, 2011

On flying the friendly skies.

I'm a little hesitant to post a rant so soon after Booze's message about Japan.  I've been to Sendai several years ago on a visit to Japan and this whole situation has me still feeling a little shellshocked.  It's incredibly heartbreaking to hear about the number of people still missing from the resulting tsunami.  I hope their families can eventually find some closure in this matter whether they be found alive or not.  Can we all observe a moment of silence before I continue with this post?


Okay so I've just returned from a visit to France, or as Rel-Bar put it, the "Old World".  That just sounds so cool doesn't it?  Like I just visited some place right out of a Dungeons & Dragons game set.  And no, I'm not going to clown on Dungeons & Dragons.  GrumpyCoyote is "cool" no matter what geeky shit he's into, and that's final!

Anyway, this post is about the TSA, or Transportation Security Administration for those of you who aren't lucky enough to live in the United States to experience their special brand of "customer service".  I've flown many times after 9/11 and am quite used to the heavy flight restrictions we are to endure because of terrorist threats.  The TSA was created by the Department of Homeland Security to ensure our safety in a government regulated fashion.  I wouldn't call it a necessary evil because I get it, we're living in shitty, scary times.  People try weird stuff like lighting their shoes or underwear on fire, it's messed up, and definitely not cool.  We absolutely need this agency.  What we don't need, is their crappy attitude. 

Everytime I pass through a security checkpoint in an American airport, I make it a point to smile and say hello to the TSA person that reviews your boarding pass and personal identification.  They usually return the friendliness with a stern look of disapproval and bark at you if you're walking too fast or too slow, or if you headed down the wrong lane.  Sorry, it was confusing because they arranged the retractable nylon barriers in some kind of strange labyrinth that is designed to lead you to certain death (or a full body cavity search).  And we're stuck complying with their rude ushering and demands because nobody wants to rock the boat and appear terrorist-like right?  We are just happy sheep doing our best to follow directions in order to make it to the other side of security so that we can enjoy a $15 sandwich and a Dean Koontz novel from the terminal bookstore.

Okay in their defense, they deal with thousands of anxious and annoyed travelers on a daily basis.  It's enough to wear anybody out.  That's when you start to look for new job.  Judging by the ads i see on daytime TV, you can become a vet tech, car mechanic, medical billing specialist, or personal masseuse in less than 2 years and you don't even need your GED.  A pretty sweet deal for these disgruntled TSA jagoffs.

Oh and another thing, you know that Backscatter X-ray (aka Whole Body Imager, aka tit/nutsack/brain scanner) machine they spent millions of dollars on?  Well it appears that it doesn't save anybody any time or effort.  After they took an "adult" photograph of my genitals and then reviewed it carefully on a monitor like I was a grade school science project, I was then to suffer through a pat-down, and then a machine was used to sample the palms of my hands for traces of who knows what; gunpowder, toxic waste, nacho cheese residue, etc.  So in the end, instead of me just walking through a good ol' fashioned metal detector, this machine required 3 separate TSA personnel, a gigawatt of electricity, and everybody's precious time while they sorted things out.  I may be wrong, but I thought a fancy expensive machine like this was supposed to simplify the process.  Hmmm, maybe it's just a government conspiracy to catalog all nutsacks and funbags in some sort of kinky searchable database.  That makes perfect sense now that I think of it.

Also, did I forget to mention I approached the security checkpoint dressed as the artist formerly known as Cat Stevens and holding a lit molotov cocktail in one hand and an AK-47 in the other?  Maybe that didn't help. Hmmmm...

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Gomen Nasai

When I wrote my last post I had no idea that my mention of "Tokyo", and " tsunamis" would be so timely. Although the tsunami created by the earthquake off the coast of Northern Japan did cause some damage to the Oregon and California coastlines, and of course to the islands of Hawaii, it is nothing like the devastation which happened and continues to happen in Japan. All of us at UCB send our thoughts and best wishes to our friends in the land of the rising sun.