Sunday, March 30, 2003





hey now rock stars



i heard smashmouth's "all star" today on radio disney's Top 30 and man what a cool song. just in terms of the chords, the melody, even some of the lyrics. i really need to learn that on geetar.



i'm tipsy on mexican beer from a BBQ in my building's courtyard. in fact, i'm about to go back and rejoin. fuck work. there's boys down there and everything. plus it's hot and dry tonight and there's stars.



i've been mum cuz everything going on in my world falls under the Non-blogopossible heading: firstly, there's the super-sick dog thing, which really takes 90 percent of my heart and mind these days and which I haven't mentioned at all because it's deadly boring (combining two of the biggest bloggy no-nos: dog talk and medical talk). Then there's the boy stuff, which is way-way off the blogopossible spectrum. In fact it's not even something I speak about in real life. it's like that, you know.



then there's my new haircut, which is so rock i think it needs to go out and start a band, and get laid, i'll just sit here at home. it's really out of control. it's so hip it hurts. i take absolutely none of the credit whatsoever; it was the vision of my haircutter, Shannon. this haircut is an expression of her inner rock star. i'm just the conduit.



so it's time to take a break from the blog and live some life, because it's being served to me almost faster than i can eat it, and i wouldn't want to be rude and insult the host.



love,

kate



Wednesday, March 26, 2003

Hi Peppermint Patty:



Samantha Soma sent me this link, where you can send a letter to a soldier. It's a Dear Abby thing.



Thanks, Samantha.



Matt Welch posted a great link to Sgt. Stryker's blog, which itself links to numerous groups helping troops. My favorite link of all is TroopTrax, a group devoted to sending music to soldiers. They're taking CDs and magazines and batteries, probably portable cd players too, I'd imagine.



At the moment Talk Of The Nation is airing an awesome discussion of this very subject, talking to family members of soldiers. One woman says her daughter is in Iraq and she is caring for her grandchild. She said she supports the soldiers completely, yet feels this war is an oil for blood proposition, unnecessarily jeopardizing the lives of soldiers. It is so weird to hear military families speaking out like this. I heard something similar on KPFK, a couple whose son is in Iraq who are participating in civil disobedience against the war, trying to explain that it is possible to support soldiers and oppose war. In fact, from a parent's point of view, these may be part of the same thing.



Just heard on the radio a sound-montage of family members of soldiers, some grieving for their dead sons, some unable to mask the worry in their voices for children still alive. And then, at the end of the montage, the voice of Donald Rumsfeld claiming that "we are mindful of our fallen soldiers." His was the only voice that was devoid of emotion. I couldn't believe that he actually understood what he was talking about. This is the guy who has a plaque on his desk stating that war is the noblest "sport" known to man.



It's weird how this war is happening in a Bible place. You know, Eden and everything. The Garden of Eden, containing the tree of knowledge. The source of our divinity--and our humanity.



right then,

cheerios,

kate

Monday, March 24, 2003





My Dog:



Self-denial and wartime just don't mix. Let's go get some syphillis and some lung-cancer. Fuck work, I'm going to Atlantic City."



(thanx, twinkle twinkle blah blah.)



New Yorkers have an excuse now to be ridiculous, self-indulgent whores, and I'm kinda jealous. So I'm using the General Terror Vibe as an excuse to eat whatever the fudge I want, whenever; to smoke as much as I want; drink too much; stay up all night playing guitar; and generally get reacquainted with my favorite sacramental poisons. Feels mortal, confusing, exciting and untenable. Feels like life. Somewhere along the line in childhood I got the idea that Real Life would announce its arrival by an all-pervading sense of order. I would understand the layers of experience coiled inside any given moment, and they would all make sense in context, perfect and complete, forever and ever, amen. Getting over that illusion is a daily effort. Soon as experience feels elegant and balanced, something happens. Then I gotta shake hands with chaos once again.



Sometimes chaos itself is so seductive I want to surrender to it too, just let entropy turn my house, my body and my relationships into a map of chaos. That never works either.



Anyway. Don't you wish you could be of use to a soldier? Does anyone know how you can do something good for a soldier? Do they need cds or penpals?



Was disappointed the CNN war correspondent Kevin Sites got his blog shitcanned. Generally, though, I find this particular moment so overwhelmingly stressful, I have lost almost all interest in newsy media of any sort, 'cept radio. Take the Oscars. I just couldn't get it up to give enough of a shit to watch. You know?



You know how that feels?



Is that depression or self-preservation, or both? It's all too much, like the Beatles said. Cept they were talking about the blazing glory of Love.



And love itself--how do you begin to grasp it, when it's too big to even feel all at once on every level--both romantic love and the big all-love? I'm not going to even try. I'm just going to give thanks for it. Maybe that's the best way to understand it. Give thanks. I'm so thankful for love. I wish I could hold it close enough, wish i could taste the depth of expression in a single flower, even, all the way, much less the dimensions of energy between two people.



Whoa... think it's time to sleep. It's been a long week of wartime partying and my fingertips are frayed.



Stay gold,

kate

Thursday, March 20, 2003

all aboard the night train:



i think i may have found my male doppelganger. his name is david segal. it's weird. he even says "party people." dig his awesome rant against Christgeek. my new brother in the strugglehood.



I know there's a truly horrific war happening but i'll leave that to the war people to talk about until i have something worth saying besides fuuuuuuuucccck.



is that ok with you?



xo

funnel cakes,



speaking of bad monkeys. another scientific certainty that really yanks my pigtails is the whole speed of light thing. it's not so much whether it has slowed down or sped up over time, it's the whole "nothing can go faster than..." routine they always pull on you when your jet blasters are revving up. You're ready to travel at the speed of magic and they tell you, "err, excuse me sir but you cannot travel faster than the speed of light or you will be cited by the Sun Police," and I just gotta give them the big pizza nose (yknow, the intergalactic sign of disrespect).



The Sun Police remind me too much of Scientologists. Always trying to keep you in line, remind you who's boss.



My awesome neighbors, Mary and Hovik, are so rad. they are completely sweet humans and they truly grok the special secret magic of Sloopy, my dog. They love him and they keep saying, "He's so nice!" People can't believe a dog can be so gentle and heavenly soft. Of course, i can't believe two people can be so gentle and heavenly soft. Mary and Hovik like to walk Sloopy down to the corner. We play on the lawn of the children's school. Mostly though we just sit because Sloopy is not doing so hot lately.



Mary and Hovik have some family in Iraq. They also have family in Armenia. Hovik doesn't speak much English yet, I think he's about six, but Mary said that their parents don't understand why we all can't live together in peace. Their parents are deep Americans, in the deepest sense of the word, to me. They fled the Turks and came to America, a young sexy Armenian couple with dreams of surviving together, of children, of life. Life. They have two beautiful kids now and they work their asses off and they have an American flag and they are salt of the earth people. But you can tell they are tired. They seem sad. They're sad and tired. Of course their lives are better now and their kids' lives are better, but I think they're sad and on top of it they don't feel sexy anymore. If I could wish anything for them, I would wish them to feel sexy again. They need time away from their kids. But I digress.



I told Mary I was sorry she had to experience this kind of ugly grown-up bad war stuff. But then I thought, well, when I was her age we were mixed up in Iran and Iraq too; we were involved in Afghanistan; we were making nuclear bombs and killing people in Central America and Southeast Asia. I grew up in times kind of like this. I almost felt like, I don't know, some kind of deja vu.



Still in L.A.



5 p.m. still feels the same here as it did then: cars, pink sky, palm trees, some kind of sadness.



The 5 p.m. melancholy; the L.A. sunset aching feelings; the longing of childhood: it's really just the sadness of this world. this sad and beautiful world.



now i must go drink much more whiskey.



peace

kate






Dudes.... I am so high. Sorry for the weird coding fuckup. hey. you know. you know what i'm saying. it's all good.



Upside-Down Cakes:



Last night at 1:30 a.m. in bed I checked out Ye Olde Jim Ladd on KLOS, to see what he was playing. He's the nation's last fulltime freeform DJ at commercial radio, and he's always topical when shit's going on. He's a child of Ye Olde Sixties, don't you know.



Unlike himself, he was spinning the shit out of Joni Mitchell: "The Circle Game" followed by "Teach Your Children" and Neil Young's "I Am A Child." Afterwards he said, "I wanted to add some beauty to all the ugliness. A guy called in and said he's been estranged from his wife, and he just found out his son is stationed in Kuwait. He's really worried about his son. So I said, this next set is for you."



So tell me, O cynical music writers and downtrodden DJs: yes, tell me again, tell me over and over, and tell me, Radio Chain Mercenaries, that radio is meaningless to people in times of crisis. Tell me desperate parents of soldiers don't flip on the radio just for some sense of not-being-alone, of being connected to others, of sharing their story and hearing others'. Tell me people don't need to rock out, cry, or laugh at times like this. Tell me people don't want radio to help them feel actual feelings, all kinds of feelings, happy and uncomfortable. Tell me people don't need radio to give them the very thing it was originally intended to give them: Community.



Anyone who belittles the power of radio has nothing but contempt for music, musicians, and the way that art transforms hearts and realities. The power of radio is the power of music itself. Music is the most sacred art form we've got. There's thieves in our temple, you guys. In fact, we rented it out to them.



Recently Clear Channel COO Mark Mays wrote a memo to employees telling them to keep their chins up in the face of all the outrage they've provoked in America with their crappy radio and crappy concerts. It's great reading but here's a snippet to give you a chuckle:



"We give consumers the BEST product. If we didn't they would not listen to our stations or go to our shows or notice our advertising. Consumers VOTE every day with their money and their ratings. We win everyday because we listen to what they want, to what our communities want and we deliver that!





Stay the course.





Our customers are winning. Many of you are working on cross market and cross platform projects where we are helping our customer move product and get the BEST results for their advertising and sponsorship dollars. Our customers VOTE with their dollars every day.



Stay the course.



I am constantly overwhelmed at the GREAT work you folks are doing for your communities. You don't do it because it's required or because it's good PR, you do it because that's what good corporate citizens do!"



(Oh, wow. "Good corporate citizens"?)



PLEASE NOTE: Mays makes a distinction between "consumers" (you and me, the music lover) and "customers" (advertisers). CLEAR CHANNEL'S CUSTOMERS ARE ADVERTISERS, NOT MUSIC LOVERS. CLEAR CHANNEL IS IN THE ADVERTISING BUSINESS. THIS IS HOW THEY DEFINE THEIR ENTIRE M.O. AS A COMPANY. THEIR JOB IS TO "HELP" COMPANIES "MOVE PRODUCT."



(sorry for the all-caps, I'm starting to sound like a bottle of Dr. Bronner's Soap)



The reason people notice their advertising is because they have a lockdown on radio and concerts and also own a huge billboard chain. It has nothing to do with "best."



And obviously, people would listen to other stations if there were any that were any better; but because of deregulation, the big chains have created an oli-mediocrity. They're all huge and they all suck ass. And, again, obviously people would rather pay less money to see concerts in real music venues and not hockey fucking stadiums, but they have no choice.



(Thanks to Clearchannelsucks.org)



Now, my best girlfriend's husband is a very successful radio programmer at Clear Channel, so don't you think I'm just some player hater. This is not about hateration. He loves music and so do a lot of people in corporate radio. But there's only so much he can do to rock the house in the context of contemporary radio programming. And it's killing radio.



Music will go on.



Love,

Kate
Hello, Nurds:



Yeah, I didn't even want to go there today but Amy is right. (BTW, Amy, your blog is off-kilter and I can never read it and I am sad!)



So yeah, Clear Channel has organized pro-war rallies. The goofiness of this is really multifaceted.



Clear Channel was one of the largest lobbiers, shapers and beneficiaries of the Telecom Act of 1996, which deregulated the broadcast industry and enabled them to become the world's largest radio chain (which also owns the nation's biggest concert venue/promotoions company, SFX, and is also very involved in sports and sports stadiums).



Clear Channel are the same people who brought you that list of 150 "lyrically inappropriate" songs after 9/11, including "Imagine," "What A Wonderful World," "New York, New York," "Stairway to Heaven," "Walk Like An Egyptian," and "Mack the Knife."



It wasn't so much that these songs were necessarily too political; it's that hearing these songs might have evoked actual feelings in people (as ridiculous as some of them are). The point with radio these days is to make people feel as little as possible. Oh, and to avoid revolutionary concepts such as no religion, no countries, the dark sacred night, and a bustle in your hedgerow.



Anyway, so Clear Channel, which is also known as a uniquely cynical and mean-spirited company, is, like all the big chains, currently courting the FCC and Congress for further deregulation--as if we didn't have enough non-competitive corporate control of the airwaves. Anyway, yeah, the deregulation is being planned right now in D.C.



My problem with deregulation has always been the musical suckitude it engenders. Nelly and Eminem notwithstanding, deregulation makes for terrible bad radio. It's that simple. But there is another serious problem: the control of information by corporations in bed--or at least totally making out on the couch--with the Pentagon. Radio Fun Fact: The head of the FCC, who is pro-deregulation, happens to be Colin Powell's son. I'm sure it warms his cockles to see his buddies at Clear Channel sucking his father's cockadoodle doo with their pro-war demonstrations.



Just imagine what Clear Channel will be able to do for the Powells once they own all the stations in America. I mean, if they thought selling this war was a piece of cake, the next one'll be a pepperoni pizza with a supersize Coke and free cinnastix.



Love,

me



PS: Wanna send a big shoutout of love and rock 'n' roll spirit to Amy and everyone in NYC. Kick ass like you always do and don't let shit get you down. They'll probably bomb the Hollywood sign anyway.



Wednesday, March 19, 2003

Hello, Puffy Cloud Baby:



Do you ever think about scientific certainties and wonder how long they're going to remain sacrosanct?



Lately I've been wondering about the law of conservation of energy. It states that energy cannot be created or destroyed, and that the total amount of energy in the universe remains the same, always. Energy's just changing hands all the time like money, except no new energy is ever minted or burned or degraded over time.



Something about this law really pisses me off, and I'm really pissed off at everyone who just accepts it without question. It's based on such archaic concepts, first of all: for example, the word "universe." That's such a retarded concept at this point, when we know damn well there's about 40 xillion dimensions we haven't yet discovered, not to mention the possibility of many "universes."

Furthermore, how do we know energy isn't being lost or gained in increments or dimensions we don't have the tools to measure? That's the trouble with science: It's always limited by the technology and prejudices of the day.



I just read something on the commentor aK's website by a guy who came up with a theory that light travelled faster in "the early universe." This seems perfectly possible to me, but to his scientist comrades it was embarrassing silliness.



People are so stuck on certainties that limit their vision. It makes sense to me that light could change speed, since we all know that time changes speed.



Ah, time. Time itself is a kind of goofy idea. To me it's not a thing, just an expression of movement. But I think I've said this before.



I just read a way cool email about Suede, the mighty Suede, doing a concert in Beijing. If you're into Bowie-copping heroin-sex Brit rock, this is your band. God bless the Suede. I wish they'd been my first concert. (Well, maybe not. Culture Club was pretty fantastical.):



"this account comes from the London-based mgr. of London based group, Suede, who are legally known in the U.S. as The London Suede tho as Suede every where else on the planet.



the best shows in beijing since 1949? well that's how suede's 2 shows were described by a chinese journalist, which isn't bad i suppose. early indications were not good - there has never been a concert like this before, the official permit was only granted a week prior to the show which meant tickets were hard to obtain as no-one knew where to buy them. press in the run up to the band's arrival was as much about how band and audience should react and dress at a rock concert as the music. should we get an audience it was pretty clear that, for most of them, it would be the first concert they'd been to.



it was the first time that the audience was allowed on the floor of a venue in china, apparently for previous events they were located about 50 metres from the stage in bleacher style seating. doors are approaching and the police roll in and decide they will have a line of police in front of the stage to keep people in their seats, which is going to look very strange. doors open and within a few minutes it becomes obvious that there is going to be way more the 350 people in tonight. the bleachers at the back (the cheaper tickets) are starting to look really busy and the seats down the front are looking pretty respectable. i wander outside to check the box office and there is a reassuringly large queue down the street, obviously advance tickets are not the way forward for beijingers.



the gig kicks off with the venue looking great, very busy, and dj youdai brings some people down from the balcony to fill up some of the floor space which helps the vibe immensely. everyone is on their feet but staying in their seats, having a great time but still quite orderly. by the 2nd song people have moved down to the police line and there's a bit of a scrum going on and by the 3rd song the police are overcome by the weight of the audience who all rush down the front, start a mosh pit and it's business as usual for the rest of the show. the police were really cool, just hung back, i even caught a couple of them tapping their toes. ..."



The image of a line down the street in Beijing to see Suede warms my gizzard in ways I'd never imagined.



In other news, you gotta laugh at the latest scramble by the RIAA (Retarded Idiots of America, Associated), to hold back the mighty, mighty river. Now they're threatening companies whose employees swap music at work. What next--suing computer manufacturers? Why not sue browser companies? Or Internet access providers? Oh, I forgot--they are. They're blaming everyone but themselves.



I'd love to know how many employees of the RIAA swap music files. Gimme a break, people.



xoxox

moi

Tuesday, March 18, 2003

Hi Space Face:



Times like these, music means more than ever. After 9/11, various music writers wrote about how that experience had rendered pop music, and their livelihoods, sort of temporarily meaningless. Jed the Fish said something similar to me about his job at KROQ.



The truth, however, is just the opposite. People, and maybe young people especially, turn to music at times like this in a more intense way than normal, for all sorts of reasons, and they need music that's going to stand up to the intensity of their feelings. Doesn't have to be political. And they turn to radio, or at least they used to, with special yearnings. Radio's special qualities shine at times like this. I mean, they would, if the laws allowed them to.



Maybe I should just talk about myself though and not other people, since I really don't know about what other people feel. All I know is, I want to listen to real music that dreams of a world of peace and magic. When an artist makes art like this, he or she actually helps to make that world happen. It's very crazy but it's true. So right now I feel a deeper life in happy punk rock like the Ramones, or heartfelt rainbow-harmonied superpop like ELO, or even liberational party rock like the Donnas, or the striving audacity of our friends Tsar. Music that is proud to be passionate and pleasure-seeking, music that's ready to be torn apart by cynics, and survive anyway--that's music that speaks to my heart and reflects the world I wish we lived in.



I believe we can make the world more beautiful. The way we do that is to be more beautiful. You know, the golden rule and all. The catch with the golden rule is this: It only works if you really love yourself.



If you do, and you can share it with someone who needs it, you are making the world more beautiful in infinite ways we can't hardly measure.



rock,

me

Monday, March 17, 2003

Y to the O to the Baby Baby Pants:



Went to Mars for a minute. It's hot there. Hot and rocky. Plus, there's all kinds of lizards. Which would be fine, except these ones just wanna talk your ear off about the stupidest shit. I mean, you're on your way to some important engagement, and they kind of grab your sleeve with a claw and say, "Mind if I bend your ear a minute?" and then without even waiting for an answer they just start jawing about the stupid weather and public transportation. They wear these old geezer golf hats too. You're like, Um, excuse me? I have a life? On Mars? And I have something better to do than sit here listening to you yammer on about tennis balls?



These damn lizards.



So let's see. What has happened since Wednesday. Matt and Manu had a BBQ in their new house, which was rad. I wish I could have stayed into the night but my dog is sick. Anyway it was a treat to eat lemon meringue pie, drink a beer and wear an inner tube. Have you ever worn an inner tube around your waist? It's shockingly comfortable. You can put stuff on it, like your beer. I guess that's kind of a Homer thing. Just wear an inner tube all the time to put your beer and stuff on it.



xoxo







Wednesday, March 12, 2003

Hi Torchbearers:



I was just flipping thru the old Spin with the White Stripes on the cover and for the first time really noticed the little monkey on Jack's shoulder and in all the pictures. In one picture he's pensive, sitting in Jack's arms and holding Meg's hand, wearing a little white smock. In another he's screaming, "I'm here!" That monkey has such style, such spirit; he looks into the camera and reveals his human essence, you can feel it, even though he's just a little guy. Just a little guy. I want to be that little monkey.



When you grok the essence, and the consciousness, of an animal, of one single animal, you hook into the consciousness of Creation, and then you totally trip out, dude! Sensitivity is everywhere. Careful.



Holy green bananas. I forgot to mention I spent about 8 hours interviewing Liam Lynch the other day, of "My United States of Whatever" and "Sifl and Olly" fame. He's one of the more brilliant people I've met. His supercreativity vibe rubbed off on me and I've been driving around making up songs about pot bellies, grilled cheese, Cute Guys, echinacea and my dog.



He knows Meg and Jack and Jack emailed him some of the new songs. I got to hear "Seven Nation Army," the first song, which is very different and bizarre and still Stripey in its way.



First of all there's a bass (really a jazzed-up guitar). Second, it's got a disco sort of beat; you can easily hear this being remixed for a dance club version. The bass line that defines the song is just like the melody from the Bob Marley song "Dem Belly Full But We Hungry." The final oddity is that it really rocks, hard, almost in a cock-rock metal way. Cool, man.



It is such a relief to hear a great band not taking itself too seriously, not assuming they now have to write The Great Rock Record. Like the Beatles, they seem to be just checking shit out, whatever turns them on, randomly, in a humble way that over the long haul can make for real greatness.



shit i got to go write some shit.



love,

kate
Hey You Rotten Drunks!



Got trashed last night at Casita del Campo with Ken B., Matt, Manu and Ben, for Ben's B-Day. It was a wonderful way to get high. Tequila has something magic in it. Good tequila.



Anyway Matt and Ken and Emmanuelle told me that they hate blogs with white type on a dark background. Maybe it's just my computer but I find it easier on the eyes. I always have my monitor brightness set way down low and contrast way up high--crispness with none of the glare. I think that monitors should always be turned down low, personally. Anyway, do you just tolly hate the dark background on my blog? I mean, I could change it. It just would feel so different.



Got to run.



moi

Monday, March 10, 2003

Hey Freaks!



Forgot another really rad form of procrastinating: Google vanity searches. When I'm about to write an article and feel like a huge dumb loser who should really get a job at Twisty's Rad Pretzel Hut, I waste an hour or so sifting through every last goddamn entry on Google with my name in it. (Pathetical, I know.) Far as I can tell there are only seven Kate Sullivans in America, and four of them are journalists. One of them even wrote something in Seventeen on the White Stripes. Spookalicious!



One is a TV person in Tucson or some shit. One is a college kid at Columbia who writes exactly like me but better. One is a public health official and one is a singer-songwriter who does an Edith Piaf show. Then there's ye olde Kate Sullivan Elementary School in Tallahassee, and anyone who sends me one of their Kate Sullivan "Rock With Pride" T-shirts will get mad sexual favors. From Kate Sullivan the health official. (She knows more about safe sex than I do.)



Oh yeah, there's also a geologist ("rock" on!) and a high school volleyball genius. Spike it!



Um, yeah, there's also a Scientologist. Boo!



I usually type into the search engine some shit like "Kate Sullivan + rock" (or "Kate Sullivan + [this one guy I like] and get about 10,000 links to my blog, plus a lot of Matt Welch and old Ken Layne and Tony Pierce stuff. Thank God for friends. But tonight I didn't feel so lame because I got a link to a Weezer website. It turns out I'm listed in the liner notes for "Maladroit." Sure, there's about 546 names there, but still. I'm just trying to figure out what they're thanking me for. (The Columbian coke? The blow jobs? The tiny robot monkey? :) And why "Maladroit"? The Green Album was the one I wrote about. Maybe they're thanking Kate Sullivan the Scientologist.



I didn't even buy "Maladroit"--Axel burned me a copy. I feel bad. In a cool way.



Sorry for name-dropping.



I have about 10 really weird and interesting cds I just received in the mail, which I will listen to and then tell you about. One is the Special Goodness, the =W= spinoff band. One is a new record by the freaking Buzzcocks, no kidding.



If you can think of a better band name than the Buzzcocks, I'd sure like to hear it.



Anyway, the whole vanity-search thing made me feel like such a jerk for being lazy and boring and lifestylish and me-me-me in this blog. I mean, it's supposed to at least tangentially relate to music, right? I'm sorry. Here's my penance.



I will write more about music on my blog.

I will write more about music on my blog.

I will write more about music on my blog.

I will write more about music on my blog.

I will write more about music on my blog.

I will write more about music on my blog.




Fuck it,

kate



Hey There, Rosie Odometer:



I just reread that thing about the gyno and it sounded so gross. But you have to believe me, it wasn't. It was charmingly clinical, if just a trace bit flirtatious. Men are insane, the times they pick to flirt. In that moment, it was appreciated, though.



OK, clearly i have nothing to say so I'll "bounce," as the cool kids say.



kate





Sunday, March 09, 2003



Hello, You Total Betty:



If it weren't for procrastination, I wouldn't ever get anything done. When I'm on deadline, instead of working, I clean my house and do laundry. When my house is messy and I don't want to clean it, I practice guitar. And when I am feeling lazy and don't want to practice guitar or clean, I work on writing articles.



When things are really bad and I don't want to do any of that, I clean my car and get the oil changed.



Blogging is a constant, everyday form of procrastination on Everything.



Like right now. I really should be transcribing an interview due tomorrow. I have oodles of work to do.



I went to a party Friday night with these guys I am writing an article about. At this party, the drunken conversation naturally turned to butts, as it should. These guys told me I have a black ass. This is nothing new, since me and my GFs have always had big ole butts and always referred to them as black asses. ("Black ass singing in the dead of night...") The difference is that these guys who said this were actually black. I can tell you, the honor of this touched my heart and put a little strut in my step today. The other funny biological thing that happened last week was that after examining me, my new gyno (a 60 year old man) goes, "You're a very healthy woman. You've got all the right tools and they're in all the right places."



Can you beat that? Not hardly.



I told my 89 year old friend Lydia about the ass thing tonight and she demanded a look at my butt. She said, That's a decent ass. You should be proud of that ass.



So probably I should really do some work now. Or I could do the other superfun form of procrastination, and go to sleep.



But before I do, a grammatical question. My friend told me yesterday that it's grammatically correct to say "tragical" and "ironical" and "poetical." It's not necessary to do that, and it sounds really cool and goofy, but it's actually good English. OK. Fine. But then he said that it's also OK to say "funner." He said this with conviction and commitment. What do you think? I don't really give a fuck because "funner" is the best word since "ironical," and I'll say it no matter what. But I'm wondering if anyone has proof either way.



In other news, my dog was recently anointed President for Life of the Intergalactical Council on Fluffiness. We're very proud of him, but he's much busier now, so please don't be offended if he doesn't answer his cell all the time. Just leave a voice mail and he'll get back to you eventually.



Veronically yours,

Kate

Thursday, March 06, 2003

hey, You in the Chaps:



don't wanna be a bitch, but if i ever become a real name dropper, please bitch slap me. i know i sometimes do a little of that, but i could do a lot more. i mean, who couldn't? if you live in hollywood and especially if you do anything remotely related to the entertainment industry, you're bound to meet famous people. even be friends or even make out with them. BIG FUCKING DEAL, PEOPLE.



Name dropping is a bummer, like getting sausage when you ordered bacon. Mmmmm, bacon....



love,

smackie mcpotpie

Tuesday, March 04, 2003

Greetings, Milk Duds:



Every time I feel all bad old wrinkly tired and pale from too much staying up late/playing guitar/smoking/drinking/living, I start doing the healthy stuff (sleeping eating yoga etc.). Problem is, the minute I feel better, I have so much excess energy I just gotta do all the bad things again, because they're so much dang fun. And the cycle begins anew.



So here I am smoking and blogging and feeling energetic and clean when I should be in bed. There must be a compromise.



Let's say this'll be short.



I just went to Matt Welch's blog for kicks, and was once again impressed by the energy and conflict of his writing. He is a thinker I can trust, because he admits without shame when he is confused about things.



Jim and I talked about this when he was visiting: He's taking a Noam Chomsky class at Stanford, and he feels something missing in the guy's analysis of most everything, because Chomsky reduces everything to the same predictable elements--elements that reflect his own personal neuroses as much as they do external "reality." Chomsky's world is devoid of music, of humor, of surprise and most especially of confusion. Chomsky wants you to believe he's got it all figured out, and he wants you to be afraid. I told Jim about the speech by Vaclav Havel which Matt excerpted a while ago, in which he admits that the older and wiser he gets, the less confidence he has in his own instincts and abilities. This kind of admission represents a kind of freedom Chomsky lacks.



Matt has a nice bit on his blog now, detailing Chomsky's fear-based loathing of Havel. Yes, Havel. Havel, who was imprisoned in Ruzyne prison in Prague for his beliefs, who grew up under a totalitarian regime and knows something about the systematic and violent control of political dissent. Apparently, Havel was oppressed by the wrong sort of totalitarians, for Chomsky's tastes. How a guy who's been lionized and given an academic throne by one of America's most prestigious universities can claim moral and intellectual superiority over a guy who went to prison for his beliefs is one of the mysteries of life, up there with "what makes bubble-wrap such fun to pop?" and "How did Big Star compose 'O My Soul'?" (In-studio improv? A bunch of song fragments mushed together?)



Anyway, Chomsky is upset that Havel likes America for fighting Communism. Yes, it's confusing when bad guys fight bad guys. You don't know where you stand. You don't know why they're fighting. This is why I (and lots of people) are so conflicted about this crazy new war. Marching against the war, I heard a small voice in my gut (yes, a voice in my gut, it's weird but there's some vocal cords there) saying, do we know what we're protesting?



I mean, back before Hitler had invaded Western Europe, before he appeared to be as large a threat as he was, lots of people belittled him. I didn't know this, but my friend David told me that Churchill's early stance against Hitler was viewed as a lame form of old-fashioned war-mongering. Of course, it turned out that tolerance of Hitler was a huge mistake.



I'm not trying to totally equate two very different situations and historical eras. I'm just asking questions.



Now it's for sure time to go to sleep. I promise to stop talking politics so much. It's no fun and that's not what this blog is for.



On a lighter note, my awesome friend Ken gave me a gift today: Wham's "Fantastic." Holy cow, does George Michael have a gift for album titles or what? "Make It Big"? "Fantastic"? "Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1"? Can't hardly wait to listen to "Fantastic," without prejudice.



I'm interviewing Liam Lynch Wednesday. I'm also interviewing Michelle Branch, but I have a really good reason I will explain at a future date.



xoxo

moi

Monday, March 03, 2003

Dudes:



Like, I tolly didn't mean to sound all 'wah-wah-wah, I am so oppressed' in the whole silly Xanadu thing. I mean, if a family can't shame you for liking Xanadu, what good are they? Furthermore, I would like to say that shame in general gets a bad rap. Shame has helped to make me a much more fucked up and interesting person, which is, of course, a must for a writer.



Got to run.



Me
Hi, Sunflower:



A rich weekend with all the good stuff, plus I got a kickass facial. I feel like a new girl with a new face.



You really can't drink and play records for your friends enough. There probably isn't enough time in the linear time-space dimension to really listen to music with your friends enough--or deeply enough, anyway. What's missing in our time, in linear time, is not quantity, it's depth. We don't get to experience the full range of its splendor.



I have been thinking that music is time itself, showing its true face.



I have also been thinking that music is another dimension, like the fifth of many secret dimensions.



There's two big things to talk about: On Friday night I painted my kitchen lavender. That is what delivered me from the valley of the shadow of mil-dep. On Saturday, among other things, I finally listened to the entire Jeff Lynne side of "Xanadu" for the first time since I was nine. This put the stars back in my sky. And it wasn't just the whiskey and fine company, either.



As a 9 year old, I was obsessed with Xanadu. I couldn't stop listening to it. My friends and I would listen to it over and over and sing along to all the words. We didn't know what the fuck Electric Light Orchestra meant; we didn't know what the lyrics meant; we didn't even know what "Xanadu" meant; we just loved the album so much we had to eat it (the whole album, it must be said). Xanadu was a magical place inside of Los Angeles, and inside our imaginations. We went to the abandoned Pan Pacific Theater, and peeked in the cracks in the doors, and to Venice Beach, looking for Xanadu.



My family shamed me for this, though. They shamed me for my enthusiasm over "bad" music. Ha ha, Kate and her Xanadu.



Well, listen up, fuckers: As a full-grown music fan and writer and shit, I can officially say that Xanadu, the Jeff Lynne side, kicks motherfucking ass, and I totally understand why we loved it so. (And the song with the Tubes is also kind of genius.)



The song "Xanadu" isn't even the half of it. These songs would have or could have been huge ELO hits if they had come out on a proper ELO album. I sat singing with my friend on the couch, singing "The Fall," and we both were crazy-eyed with discovery, because we could not believe how brilliant this music is, and how secret--who would expect this on the fucking Xanadu soundtrack? Jesus. Gimme a break. We realized Jeff Lynne is the most underrated musician of our time.



Plus, the music means something to me emotionally now, in a specific way it couldn't at nine. I understand what the words mean now.



I understand now that there is life after heartbreak--a better, deeper, realer life. In fact, there is heroism and triumph in being the one who never stopped believing in love. In being the brave heart. I respect myself because I am a genuine romantic, not a cynic.



Jeff Lynne writes about my romantic feelings better than anyone.



I wonder if this is because his music taught me about love when I was a child. Maybe that's why I'm so fucked up!



So on another note, nobody offered me any practical help in depression remedies, except for J. Go and my lovely friend Dara, who emailed me. I thought it would be fun to get a running list going of different things people to do to cheer themselves up. Oh well. I took care of it myself. I got to run now.



xo

kate



Saturday, March 01, 2003

I'll Take the Alphabet:



So two major things. One, it's a little strange, but I didn't know that Mister Rogers was dead yesterday. I was just loving him, and thinking about what a great man he is, or was, because Jim had sent me an email about him.



The other thing is, I am hereby revoking my whole-hearted opposition to the war. I know it sounds crazy, but I'm not sure anymore what I think. I am not going to any more protests for the time being. I think that Stinky McMustache is as bad as Hitler. He's just a bag of trouble.



Tonight I painted my kitchen lavender and had a Weezer discographic festival. Weezer is one of the greatest bands on the planet. Just found out that the commander of the space shuttle, Willie McCool (can you say rad name?), was a Weezer freak. Here's what Karl Koch wrote on the Weeze website:



"As you must know by now, Space Shuttle Columbia on mission STS-107 broke up while descending to Earth for its landing yesterday, killing all 7 astronauts on board. While everyone grieves for their families and mourns the tragic loss, the weezer community also feels the particular loss of the pilot, Commander Willie McCool. As reported on 1/15, Willie was a huge music and weezer fan, and brought his trusty blue album on the flight not only to listen to, but in hopes of getting a neat picture to contribute to weezer.com upon his return..."



There is a picture on the Weeze website of the Blue album floating inside the shuttle, but they don't know if it's real or not.



sniffle snuffle xo

me