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"Before you know it as the years go by, you're just like other people you have seen, with all those peculiar human ailments. Just another vehicle for temper and vanity and rashness and all the rest. Who wants it? Who needs it? These things occupy the place where a man's soul should be." -- Henderson the Rain King

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Factotum

Book #46 on my reading list this year was Charles Bukowski's Factotum.

If you've read any Bukowski then you already know what you're getting into with this book. If you're not familiar with Bukowski Wikipedia has a good write up. If you don't like to read or are just plain lazy you're in luck as it looks like the book was recently adapted into an IFC film starring Matt Dillon, Lili Taylor, and Marisa Tomei.

"Woke up this morning and it seemed to me, that every night turns out to be
A little more like Bukowski.
And yeah, I know he's a pretty good read.
But God who'd wanna be?
God who'd wanna be such an asshole?
" -- Modest Mouse

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Monday, November 27, 2006

Orphans

With all of my recent travel I'm starting to fall behind on my book blogging, so the next few reviews may (read will) be briefer than usual.

Book #45 on my '06 reading list was Charles D'Ambrosio's Orphans. Orphans is a collection of previously published essays, primarily culled from D'Ambrosio's work with The Stranger. The essays cover a wide range of topics (Mary Kay Letourneau, crime scene reporting, whaling, modular homes, orphans, etc.) but most deal with topics that ooze of the Pacific Northwest. As with any collection, it's a bit up-and-down, but the stronger pieces clearly demonstrate why D'Ambrosio belongs on the short list of most prominent voices coming from our region today. I haven't had a chance yet to pick up The Dead Fish Museum, but it's definitely going on my '07 list.

You can read a more in depth review of Orphans on Powell's.

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Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Ashland, Oregon

We stopped in Ashland, Oregon on our way down to Sac-town for turkey day. Best known as the home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Ashland is a hip little town with some wonderful shops and more culture than a town its size should be able to shake a stick at. It also makes for a vegetarian oasis on the veggie food desert that is I-5. Although tempted by the well named Bard's Inn, we ended up staying in the historic Ashland Springs Hotel which was quite lovely. So um, if you're ever in South Oregon you should check it out or something...

Pants-Off Dance-Off

Has anyone else seen this show Pants-Off Dance-Off on Fuse.TV? I think it may be my new favorite show. Basically you have a bunch of average looking people strip-teasing (no nudity though) to crappy pop songs, while the host and their fellow "pancers" make snarky comments. I highly recommend it as it makes for excellent midnight television.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Good News Day

Today has been an excellent weird news day. Mike Tyson is going to be a hooker, Snoop Dogg is launching a clothing line for pooches and some dude accidently shot himself in the groin. Awesome-o!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Another Gator National Championship

Nicely done Emmitt. Mario Lopez....you got served.


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Tuesday, November 14, 2006

The Stranger

W00t. My Raleigh trip has me back on pace for finishing 50 books this year. Book #44 was Albert Camus' mesmerizing classic The Stranger.

Wikipedia has an excellent breakdown of the book, its plot, why it's important, and all that rot. Rather than duplicate that here I thought I'd share this topical Found list from the title page of my 1960 Vintage Book Edition copy of the book. The inside was stamped at some point by Edna's Book Exchange in Ashland, OR.

Anyways, on to the list:
  1. Buy another copy of The Stranger (Edna's)
  2. Shampoo, soap, comb
  3. Gravity's Rainbow & Henderson\Rain King
  4. Buy notebook
  5. Class at 11:00
  6. Check in bank (with Lynda's signature)

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Demetri Martin @ The Paramount

Tonight we saw Demetri Martin play a special show at the Paramount. Dude is hilarious. I'd seen bits and pieces of his stuff before but never a full show. He seems to be hitting on all cylinders at the moment, probably in preparation for an upcoming taping of a one hour Comedy Central special. With the performance tonight I think he might have earned himself a spot at the top of my favorite comedians list (right next to Steven Wright).

Opening acts David O'Doherty and Leo Allen were also quite funny. Especially O'Doherty who performed an awesome tune called F.A.Q. of the D.O.D.

You can see a short clip of Demetri's last Comedy Central special here:

A longer clip is available here
Demetri on MySpace
Clearification

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Borat

I know everyone has been posting about Borat for months now, but I figured I'd jump in too since I finally saw it over the weekend and it's most excellent. Funniest movie I've seen in a long time.

If you've already seen it and you like me you'll probably be interested in answering this:

"Was Pamela Anderson In On The Joke? A 'Borat' Investigation"

If you haven't seen it yet, you can watch the first four minutes here:

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Watch Your Mouth

Book #43 on my reading list this year was Daniel Handler's Watch Your Mouth.

Handler, aka Lemony Snicket, delivers a decidely NSFC (not safe for children) work here in what has been dubbed a 'incest-comedy gothic Jewish porn opera novel' by the Village Voice. The first half of the novel is presented as an opera with the second half written as a twelve step program. Oh and there's a golem involved too.

Sound ambitious? Indeed it is. Handler's immense skill (and stellar wordplay) as a writer is on display here, but even Handler can't keep this thing under wraps. Eventually the story collapses, sputtering to a so-so ending. I haven't read Adverbs or The Basic Eight yet, but I'd recommend starting with one of those (or maybe a Lemony Snicket book) first.

Read an excerpt here.
Handler and Stephin Merritt (aka The Gothic Archies) perform at 826 benefit.

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Friday, November 10, 2006

Fainting Goats

This is probably old news, but it's new to me...and it's hilarious. Looks like it's legit too.

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Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Hit The Road

Road, Road, Road, Yeah! Scott H. Biram's da man.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Edisto Revisited

Book #42 on my '06 reading list was Padgett Powell's Edisto Revisited, the sequel to, yup you guessed it....Edisto.

Edisto Revisited is one fine read, and a helluva follow up to Powell's classic debut novel. But I've got election results to watch and you've heard me drone on about Powell before, so since you're here, why not check out Brian's excellent Believer interview with the man himself?

For a detailed a detailed review of the book try Salon.

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Monday, November 06, 2006

Raleigh Time

The blogger is currently out. I'll be in Raleigh for a spell...closely keeping an eye out for Waffle Houses.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Waffle House Blues

Ah, Waffle House how I miss thee. Where else are you going to find things like this or this. Just another evening of awesomeness in waffle land.

The Waffle House Shrine

Waffle House Fun Facts such as this gem: "Hootie and the Blowfish released a CD in 2000 entitled: "Scattered, Smothered & Covered" and pictured a Waffle House restaurant on the cover."


Everyman

Book #41 on my list this year was Philip Roth's new novel Everyman.

Three Sentence Summary: Everyman is a book about death. It's poignant at times, but ultimately disappointing for a Roth novel. Read his other stuff first.

MetaCritic collection o' detailed reviews.

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Friday, November 03, 2006

XBox 360

Dear Blogosphere,

I just got an XBox 360, stop.
Blogging may be limited, stop.
Don't take it personally, it's not you, it's me, stop.

XOXO

jamie

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Seperated at Birth?

Is it just me or is their a distinct possibility that KEXP's John Richards (aka John in the Morning) and "funnyman" David Spade are long lost twins? I'm just sayin'.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Radiohead on SNL

Have you guys ever heard of this little indie band called Radiohead? They are totally rad. You should totally check them out some time.

Seriously though, Thom Yorke & Co.'s performance on Saturday Night Live a couple o' years ago still gets my vote for best live musical performance I've ever seen on a TV show. This performance of 'The National Anthem" just rips. "Idioteque" is jaw-dropping as well. I wonder if Thom Yorke is really from this planet or if perhaps he's just a clever alien in disguise...

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