Wednesday, December 29, 2004

OK, so yes no shit for a while--X-mas and all, etc. SO in return for your patience I offer you the best blog entry I've read in forever, by Heather Havrilesky, who gets extra props in my personal life for playing matchmaker with success for a dear dear friend of mine. May he and all of us enjoy the magic and wonder to which Heather offers panegyric supreme with oracular power:

rabbit blog

Tuesday, December 07, 2004


Subject: My lame ass problems

Dear Former Filler Honky,

I'm a 34 yr. old male, in Washington, DC. I have a friend (36 yr. old female) from San Francisco who is coming into town in the next couple of weeks.

The history of our friendship is textbook .com-boom stuff: Met online over five years ago, maintained correspondence via email and phone time (more about this in a second), finally met in person during Spring of 2003, and now she's coming to visit.

Now, our conversations couldn't really be classified as being overtly romantic, we're both a couple of dorks, but, over time, there's been an increased intimacy. We've talked about the usual growing old together, having kids, moving across the continent, blahblahblah boringcakes. This is all mutual: she was the one that brought up the notion of kids, mentions that I've become the standard of what she wants in a partner, all this stuff (granted, in that far-off way that long distance intimate conversations can go, but, you know, still) that catches me off guard when they are said. And, I'm sure I've surprised her many a time with some of the things I've said over the years.

I just want to make this clear: no one has been leading the other person on; we haven't been exclusionary by any means of the imagination; no commitment has been made by either party.

The thing is this (finally), whenever one of us comes over to visit (which is only twice now) it seems that she'll start a relationship with someone that'll last for a brief period before and after the visit. Last time, she started one about two months before I came over, it lasted about as long after. I didn't think anything of it, ultimately I just want her happiness.

This time, though, she started seeing someone two and a half weeks before the visit. Now, this could be "the real thing" for her, it's not over yet, but the signs aren't pointing to it. The way she describes this guy is much the same way she described her last steady relationship, which is how she has described most of her past relationships with guys who weren't actively screwing her over. "Nice, I'm not sure, fun while it lasts," basically describes it.

All this wouldn't be anything to get worked up about, if it weren't for the previous year's worth of conversations, and for the fact that the timing is sketchy. To me, it seems like she's picking up a security blanket before we see each other. Rather circumstantial evidence to back it up, but this is what my gut is telling me.

And I guess I don't know what I want, either. A huge part of me would like to see if we could make an LDR work, by keeping things similar. We'd both open to seeing whoever, but we would have each other. I know what the odds of survival are in the long term, but I'd be willing to give it a shot.

whatevuh whatevuh, I'm still planning on having fun,


Wishing Washily

Dear WW,

I am moved, almost to tears, by the passion of your words. The way you describe your love for each other so vividly sends shivers down my spine. It's such a colorful, provocative story, from the sexy way you two "maintained correspondence" to the delicious moment that you noticed "increases in intimacy." Oh, and those head-swimming nights you both spent, having discussions of "the usual growing old together, having kids, moving across the continent, blahblahblah boringcakes" - Ungh! The raw intensity of it all, the shivery head-spinning insanity of it all!

And then, when you wrote that "A huge part of me would like to see if we could make an LDR work, by keeping things similar"? You're comin' in hot, Striker! You'd better cool your jets or your going to fly off into the stratosphere! I mean, do you really think you're ready to wait and see and stay "open to seeing whoever"? Are you sure it's really time to "keep things similar"? Most would say that's crazy talk, at this point.

But maybe you've been swept into the white-hot world of your lover girl, who's obviously dragged under by the fearsome tide of one stormy affair or another every few months, thanks to the powerful forces moving through her heart and her soul. "Nice, I'm not sure, fun while it lasts," she breathes, her eyes fixed on some melancholy middle-distance, her heaving bossoms, uh, heaving. Who could resist the pull of her passion? Who wouldn't want to be the man who makes her sigh and whisper, "Nice, I'm not sure." as she turns her pretty face, flushed from the cold, to the twinkling heavens?

Listen up, you grain-fed honky dickweeds - not just you, WW, but every fucking honky out there needs to hear this. We're not alive for very long. Have you noticed this, dickcheeses? We do not have all the fucking time in the world to draw up cost-benefit analyses on potential long-term pairings. If you're not swept the fuck away by your lady, move the fuck on. If you're not gritting your teeth and biting the palm of your hand like goddamn Squiggy every time she walks by, get over it. If you're not having the best sex of your life - and this is when you do that, dummies, in your mid-fucking-thirties, this is your big fucking shot at great sex, or at least this is where it starts - if you're not blown away, freaking out, breaking out, thrilled, shivery, talking a lot, sending stupid fucking emails to each other, rolling around, sighing, bragging, buying dumb little gifts - then how do you think you'll feel in a few years when you're fucking old and creaky and you have three little doo-doo factories in residence? You fucking dumbass honky-ass losers.

This is how you find the man/woman of your dreams, stupids: You refuse to waste time on the man/woman of your loneliness-fueled spreadsheets. And if you can't get worked up over anyone... well, Jesus, what is wrong with you? Can you get worked up over anything at all? Here in LA, lots of people wax romantic about movies, but when it comes to their real lives, they're fucking numb and alienated and don't see the raw thrill, the breathtaking drama of every little minute. Blahblahblah boringcakes, motherfuckers! The girl who made you your coffee this morning has beautiful green eyes, and she paints weird portraits of her customers and keeps chocolate and rope stashed in her nightstand and she reads books about gardening and she knows what she wants. You could spend the next two months in bed, honkwinders, getting tied up and eating chocolate and watching old movies in the middle of the night. You could be swooning and sighing and feeling like the world is opening up like a flower. So why are you watching "Survivor" with that guy who bores the shit out of you, and pisses you off, and doesn't give a flying fuck about how you feel, ever, and mostly just wants you to get to the point and stop crying? Why are you heating up canned soup and wondering about the long-term viability of negotiating a reasonably satisfying coexistence with someone 3,000 miles away?

You stupid bitches. You're wasting your fucking time. Whenever someone really digs you, you go numb. Whenever you really like someone, you decide to just ignore the fact that they don't like you nearly as much. Or maybe you married someone, and now you give that person your worst possible self day after day, and then wonder why they look so crumpled and lame to you now. Go ahead, put it off, get back to work. Love is only the greatest fucking thing in the entire universe, but hey, you've got a presentation to finish, and besides, you can't really change anything, and only flakes and dreamers care about this shit.

Life is short, dippies. Today is the day to make your move. Buy some flowers, and a lottery ticket, and start to believe in the possibility that your life could be big and bright and pretty. As Frances McDormand says in "Almost Famous," "Be bold, and mighty forces will come to your aid." Magic, honkies! Believe in magic for once in your narrow little lives. Give up on the mundane for a minute, and open up your hearts, and listen to all the dead people in your office and on the street outside, screaming the same thing: "Live, motherfuckers! Stop planning and fucking LIVE."

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

the real marilyn manson lyric is "we used to love ourselves/we used to love one another," but i could have sworn when i saw him in concert the other night at the wiltern, he changed the lyrics.

ok bye. must write.

ok bye.




Sunday, December 19, 2004

I love letters from Vultures! And now that the show website isn't exactly active, there's nowhere for me to share them with the other Vultures, especially the ones who worked on the show. So what the heck, here's a couple of the better ones I got last week.

Oh yeah, by the way, can you guess whose quote is at the top of the page? I'll tell you at the end. I saw this person in concert last night.

(Also I like this quote from Pink. "I love life and I love myself and I'm on a mission." You said it, sister!)



You've probably moved on from this tragedy and are concocting your

next plan for world domination, but I'm still moving through

Denial/Anger/Bargaining/Guilt and am not yet on the road to


A big thumbs up on developing your voice, creating something very

fucking cool, and creating something that brings people you don't know

great joy. Thanks.

Fuck. I'm pissed off--thank you for creating something that when

withdrawn makes me pissed off.

Yours truly,


Mark: Thank you! I want to tell you that this show was a collaborative effort by many people and we all put our hearts into it.





Ever since I first heard your show on OutKast i have been hooked. Laughing and rejoicing that you dare to put a show on like this. I am beyond sad, sad isn't a word that can describe how I feel about this. Sad is how you feel when a sports team loses some big game (so i'm told) or a girl/boy dumps you and you're left with tickets to a show that create a dilemma. This is an emotion like when you expect to sit on your porch watching the sunset for the rest of your life and someone steals the sun or puts a giant townhouse in front of it. Or you pass someone on the street and you exchange smiles and in that moment you imagine your life with that person and before you can act they are gone. I just don't know how better to say it. I know there will be a backlash and you will revive. Let me know how I can help!!! Thanks for making life better,



I'm unspeechified!



OK, so the quote above is from Marilyn Manson.

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Yeah man, so... what can I say? Digging the summer-autumn weather so bad. About to go to court to go to traffic school. I feel sad whenever I go to the metropolitan courthouse on Hill St. downtown, because it reminds me how poor our infrastructure is here, in one of the richest cities in the country. it reminds me exactly of the shabby buildings on the edges of Prague--like the panelaks and the interpol building that stood across the street from my panelak in kobylisy. that interpol building was so crappy.

(panelaks, you know, the commie housing.)

the street was called strelnicna, which means something about a "shooting range," which was extra creepy (have I told this story?) because in my panelak development, hidden in the middle, was a place where the Nazis had killed resistors. golly it was creepy. there was a moument there with a cross wrapped in barbed wire, as i recall.

doug can u refresh my memory?

i feel certain i've told this story.

well I just spent a half-hour looking at maps of kobylisy and must go to court. but one more thing.

i just saw a truly great film related to this. it is about terezin, the bizarre and freakish nazi camp north of prague, a supposed "bohemian" paradise of theater, art and music. The movie is called "prisoner of paradise," and it's about the jewish berliner film director/prisoner who was asked/forced to make a propaganda film about terezin. they were going to use it as propaganda for neutral countries and stuff, to prove how humane and idealistic they were.

i can't tell you how surreal it is. rod serling might have imagined this story in his darkest hour. but it's such a beautifully made film. i have it on video if anyone wants to see it.



Sunday, December 12, 2004

I'm still in love with Sea of Angels even though she hasn't written much lately, which is her right, of course. She also went to Vegas for her birthday, just like me.

Did I tell you about my Vegas birthday? I don't remember.

Well, here's what I figured out on my Vegas birthday--which, by the way, was spent mostly at the tall place off the Strip where they hold Celebrity Poker, and the family that owns the place has a very funny name... (Mooli-woolian?) And, oh yeah, the Venetian.

Anyway, what I figured out was that, for me anyway (and I know things are different for Howard Stern), I don't go to Vegas to do anything. I don't go there to gamble, to sunbathe, to eat or even necessarily to get wasted. I certainly don't go there to get laid. I don't go there for shows, comedians, music or anything. I have never even stayed in one of the hotels on the Strip.

I go to Vegas because it makes me feel special just to be there. Anywhere there.

Now that I have realized this, all the pressure is off as far as activities. It doesn't matter what I do because it's all fun.

I feel that way about New York City, too. I feel so special when I'm there. Everything there is special. The funnest thing to do is to walk from Times Square to Greenwich Village. You watch the streets get smaller and more tangled as you go south. Cobblestones, too.

I used to want to live in New York. I had it all planned out. But I lived in Europe instead. So I got cobblestones up the butt and all the corner magazine stands you could stick up your nose. And now I'm not so sure I want to live in New York. It sounds great, but I think it may be like having a crush on a rock musician. As much as they may jazz you from a distance, it doesn't mean you're gonna click as people, in the real world. (Like in "Almost Famous," when they make the distinction between "real life" and road life.) L.A. is real life to me, and it feels like home, day in and day out, and I always hate to leave and love coming home.

But who knows? That could change.
So, I'm at a "Goth" party Friday night, which I almost didn't go to because I wasn't dressed Goth, plus I'm not interested in Goth stuff at all... But it turned out to be the most half-hearted Goth party ever held: No one was dressed Goth, including the hosts, and the music playing was '80s pop such as "White Lines," "White Wedding," "Another One Bites the Dust," and even some "Stayin' Alive" actions. The only thing Gothy was the fact that the bartender, who used to work at the Rustic back in the day, is a sort of S&M type lady. She was the token S&M waitress at the Rustic. I liked her. She was fun. Plus she wasn't skinny, which is now a requirement for employment at that place. Those owners. I tell you.

So anyway, this skinny drunk guy in ridiculous glitter glasses puts his arm around me inappropriately, and asks me what I do. I tell him I write and do a radio show, but I'm sad cuz it just died. Then I ask what he does. He says he produces a radio show but he's bummed cuz his show got cancelled that day. I'm all, dude.

His show was big and fancy on a huge network with a famous host, so he got a big severance package.

He told me some interesting things about the show, and the network, and life within the belly of the corporate radio beast. (He's actually the leader of an excellent glam band.)

So then, I talk to his bandmate, and it turns out that he's completely obsessed with baseball and, specifically, the Dodgers. I had just found out about Lima and Finley both leaving, and was feeling gloomy about the upcoming season. But after talking to this guy, I decided that there may be some small reason to be excited. For all their number-crunching, they did have the good sense to keep Green, and this new Kent guy could jazz things up, and who knows? Penny may be ready.

Naturally, whenever conversation hit upon LoDuca, it was like being stuck in a LaBrea Tar Pit. There's just nowhere to go with that conversation. What can you say?

Then his friend

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

It's funny how the brain and heart are so complex that it's possible to be sad about certain parts of your life but still be happy. Or vice-versa.

Christmastime is always a lesson in that for me.

It took me a long time to figure out that being sad doesn't mean you're unhappy. A pang in the heart does not diminish joy; it makes it glint in the light. In a world hung up on illusions of absolutes, the challenge is to accept happiness in all its cracked complexity, and say, Yes.

I've been spending a lot of time nesting and listening to a Pottery Barn holiday compilation with Dean Martin and Lena Horne, framing pictures of me and my loved ones, making shelves and strings of lights and stuff, and it makes me feel genuinely happy. I guess that's because I have a lot of love in my life. That's what you really need. Losing my show has been difficult, but it's OK, because of the love.

I wanted to thank Tony for linking to me and talking last night about rock for two hours, so here's a poem for him. My songwritng teacher, Peter Case, used to provoke me a bit with all his talk about Dylan and Robert Johnson, saying the Beatles' pure stylishness ruined meaningful music. I said nonsense. And then, because he's rad, he spent a class talking about how the Beatles' style, and glam rock, are liberating sheerly through their style. And he gave us this poem, by Tony's favorite poet, Charles Bukowski.


style is the answer to everything--

a fresh way to approach a dull or a

dangerous thing.

to do a dull thing with style

is preferable to doing a dangerous thing

without it.

Joan of Arc had style

John the baptist




Garcia Lorca

style is the difference,

a way of doing,

a way of being done.

6 heron standing quietly in a pool of water

or you walking out of the bathroom naked

without seeing


Saturday, November 27, 2004

Buenos Tacos, Doritos:

What a fab Saturday. It's rainy and I'm doing laundry. Everything's green out my windows, plus I bought a used DVD/VHS combo last night for 25 bucks through Craig's List. This cute guy in Los Feliz. I can't believe how incredibly tricked out my house is now. I have every major appliance normal people have.

1. microwave my mom told my brother to get for me when my stove broke and she felt sorry for me, plus she always thought I should have a "micro," as she calls it.

2. eco-friendly mini-dishwasher my landlords long-term loaned to me since it doesn't fit on their counter. I love the sounds it makes when it's washing dishes.

3. cute new-to-me stove (thanks, landlords!)

4. fridge

5. TV inherited from high school sweetheart and former roommate, Jake (thanks, Jake!)

6. VHS and DVD player, from Craig's List guy

7. sexy turntable and old-fashioned tube receiver/radio (with KMET sticker on it) and cool old speakers that sound rad, especially playing oldies. From St. Vincent dePaul, with help from Ken, who knows more about these things than I do.

8. Fabulous washer/dryer (long-term/quasi-permanently loaned to me by Jeff, who inherited it from Shannon and Justin; thanks! The sound of laundry in the dryer is maybe one of my top five all-time sounds. My landlord Bernard even built a little house for it, for days just like this one, and I hung a really cool "shabby chic" retro-tropical shower curtain on it, which doesn't look bad even though it sounds bad.)

9. loveable computer, which I think is also now officially "shabby chic," as it's like a 2001 blue imac, the cheapest one they made, OS 9.

10. "shabby chic" dog (who, by the way, is developing a troubling Linda McCartney mullet)

In fact, pretty much the only major appliance I don't have is a proper CD player. The one I have, a gift for my 24th birthday from my brother when we lived in Prague, is spitting up its last little bits of lasers and static, and only responds to physical abuse.

The other MAJOR APPLIANCE I don't have is any of the BEST OF THE DEAN MARTIN VARIETY SHOW DVDS OR TAPES that Regis Philben does the infomercials for.


So, to recap: if anyone's wondering what to get me, ever, I am interested in DEAN MARTIN VARIETY SHOW tapes or DVDs.

Now, the catch is, this kind of gift requires a lot of love and affection, because it's not sold in stores. As far as I know, the only place to get it, besides the commitment-heavy mail order thing ( is on eBay.



PS: I also read the new Rolling Stone today and enjoyed it very much. It's much better now that they don't have sluts on the cover every time. Two years ago, they would have put Destiny's Child on the cover instead of just reviewing the record. Anyway, the interview with Eminem was fascinating. I'm glad something has apparently changed over at Rolling Stone, and I hope they stick with it, and I hope they get savvy about expanding their subscription base and I hope they continue to be something readable.

Friday, November 26, 2004

Buenos Nachos, amigos:

Just saying hi on a quiet holiday Friday with nothing to do but drink ginger beer and stare at my new Hello Kitty screensaver, in which a floating teddy bear angel emits a pink heart from his bottom, and demurely covers his mouth with his paw.

More Hello Kitty, all the time.

If anyone has a VRC they're getting rid of, lemme know, as mine has croaked.

Keep the faith,


Monday, November 15, 2004

Almond Joy

An update on the previous entry. My new email for contacting me and whatnot is



Friday, November 12, 2004

In the words of Andre 3000, all right all right all right all right all right all right all right all right!

Some of you may know, the reason I've been away is that the day after the election, I was informed that the funders of Pop Vultures decided to pull the plug.

You can still hear our 13 pilots on the website, and you can also try streaming our last 9 shows at the Public Radio Exchange, and read all the reviews. We just got a really groovy review from a guy named Bill McKibben, who wrote the book "The End of Nature" and was a staffer at the New Yorker:

"Is there some reason that this show isn't on public radio every week, every station? It's really really good--a child of the 'This American Life' era of radio, with the great transitions., perfect pacing, and a sound that somehow combines polish and comfortable familiarity (as opposed to fakey intimacy). But I would guess its prime audience would be a few years younger, which is just what we want, no? And it's about a world that older listeners should understand too. It makes listeners work a little bit--it's about five minutes into most shows that you've figured out enough about the subject to feel comfortable. But I like doing that work."

Aw, shucks.

I invite anyone who liked the show to leave a comment or email me at, as I want to compile a list of friends-and-relations to keep updated on my future endeavors. The Vultures are a family and a team now, and it would be a shame to lose touch.

Speaking of friends-and-relations, I'd like to thank, in no particular order, some of the many beautiful people who helped or inspired our show: the wonderful Jay Allison, Ira Glass, Jeff Hansen, Eric Nuzum, Garrison Keillor, Mary McGrath, David Schulman, Brendan Greeley and everyone at PRX and Transom, Brian Quinn at WUMB, Third Coast Audio Festival, Stefan Sigerson, Weba and Mark at Catasonic Studios, 90.5 The Night, Eric Walter and Brett Baldwin at MPR, Matt Holzman at KCRW, Tim Riley, Tim Slusher, Amy Carlson Gustafson, Pete Scholtes and Melissa Maerz, Brian Siewiorek, Jim Walsh, Debbie Beukema, Kristy Guevara Flanagan and her boyfriend, my family, Bernard Elsemere and Julie Fowells, Sloopy, Toby Tyler Circus Boy a.k.a. Sir Toby Belch, Dan Reines, the staff at Amoeba Records, Electric Fetus Records, Jeff Barry, Tommy James, Herman's Hermits, John Lennon, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, John Peel, Mr. Rogers, Car Talk, Cosmic Slop, Howard Stern, Fantasia, Eric Gagne and, most of all, the Vultures:

Anaheed Alani, Garth Belcon, Hillary Churchill, Vince DeLorca, Baz Dreisinger, Eric Gordon, Liam Lynch, Benno Nelson, Eric Nuzum, Ian and Zoe Rogers, Chrissy Shannon, Axel Steuerwald, Dan Sullivan, Vinnie and Stardusters, Matt Welch, Jeff Whalen, Lauren Whitesnake and Honorary Vulture Ben Sullivan, my brother.

And MOST most of all, everyone who put us on the air from Seattle to Tuscaloosa, and everyone who tuned in, whether you loved us so much you had to wait in your driveway to hear the very end, or hated us so much you just couldn't stop listening.

rock on brothers and sisters!


Monday, November 08, 2004

don't read me but read tony. he says:

"yes mariah, tsar will be on national tv on monday

yes they dont have a cd coming out any time soon.

yes they are no longer on disney-owned hollywood records who are more interested in pimping out the new hillary duff cd because of her scary talent.

yes they are recording their third cd as we speak

and yes i was invited to go to the taping but it happens too early in the evening for me to attend but i still wanted to let you know that

yes, tsar will be on the Late Late Show, formerly hosted by craig kilbourn.

how did this happen?

how did an unsigned band who does not have an album out does not have a video out is not on any world tour get a national tv opportunity?

because Tsar really is that good

and their legend and majesty matches up with their live shows.

and because when they played the Late Late Show a few years ago they rocked the house.

and because when one of the big wigs of the show saw a beautiful young woman wearing a tsar tshirt he said, "wow, Tsar, my favorite band. those guys are destined for fame really soon."

and the woman said, "i think so too, but i might be the wrong person to ask as my husband is their manager."

and the big wig said, "have your husband call me, i'd love to have them on the show."

and thats how things are done in LA, it all matters who you know and how hard you rock.

so America, heres your chance to see rock history

the first time an unsigned band will perform on national tv despite not having anything to sell

other than love.

tune in Monday November 8 around midnight on CBS to see Tsar on the Late Late Show

you'll be better because of it.

yes, even you mariah."

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Hi Fruit Loops!

Faithful reader Cara Mia commented about trying to get Pop Vultures on the air in New York. Cara, you are not the only New Yorker wanting a little PV-love at home.

Thank you, Cara!

The first place to email is WFUV:

The appropriate people to contact are Rita Houston, Russ Borris, and Chuck Singleton.

The second place to contact is WNYC. Good people to email are Stacy Abramson and Laura Walker:

I would emphasize that you are a longtime public radio listener, and that you heard the show on the internet and from a friend in Minneapolis who raved about it, and you're desperate for it, and it would give you even more motivation to subscribe to your local station!

Thank you so goddamn much.

Please, any other readers: If you want to do the same but don't know who to contact, just leave a comment letting me know where you are, or "Where You At," as that dreadful horrible hiphop sellout cell phone commercial says.

Love forever,

your Kate

Monday, October 18, 2004


I bring you good tidings of great joy, for unto you this day is born a NEW OLDIES STATION in L.A., and it is good.

Check out 1260 AM--"True Oldies." No commercials, precious little in the way of DJs except some sort of gruff old stoner.

It's like K-Earth, if the DJs picked the music.

Today, besides more familiar hits I heard "I Had Too Much to Dream Last Night" by the Electric Prunes, "Skinny Legs And All" by Joe Tex, "Bongo Rock" by Preston Epps, "Black and White" by Three Dog Night and "Son of a Preacher Man" by Ms. Dusty Springfield.

This was all during random moments I happened to tune in while running errands.

These songs tell a story of a different life than the one told on K-Earth and KOLA 99.9.

It is truly the answer to Lenny of "The Simpsons," who asked: "Why do the oldies stations always play the same songs over and over? We want new oldies!"

I think it is a national broadcast signal much like Radio Disney, except oldies, and rad.



Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Pretty Plastic People of the Universe:

Everyone talks about how amazing Christopher Reeve was as a person, and that's great. But, since no one else is gonna say it, I'm gonna say it.

Dude was hot. Outrageously, dangerously, blindingly hot. So hot I never forgot.

When Superman came out, I experienced feelings which should have been biologically impossible for a prepubescent. And the aching--o!--the aching. And the longing.

Saw it recently; nothing had changed.

I never knew, and still don't--in cartoons or in real life--which was more enticing: The painful smart-boy shy nerd writer in glasses; or the, you know, superhero. Alone, either one wouldn't satisfy; together, they unlock everything.

A girl cannot resist the glam rock appeal of the superhero. Nor should she.

I guess it's the female neurotic version of the madonna/whore complex.

It's the Superman/nerd complex.

Dualism is a wonderful thing.

This, however, is how I want to remember him. Yeah.


Saturday, October 09, 2004

Gather round, Secret Agents:

It's Saturday and stuff. Someone from a small paper in Duluth just interviewed me about Pop Vultures. That was fun. It always feels weird talking about what you're doing. You have to figure out how to talk about it without feeling hinky.

I love Duluth. It's so beautiful and magical and weird.

Anyway, I really want to encourage any Southern Californians who want to hear my show, or just make me happy, to email KCRW NOW. This is the time. Now. They have an open ear and need a little encouragement. It is really easy. All you have to do is say something like, "Dear KCRW: Please play Pop Vultures. Love, Mike." Or you could give details, like,"This show is special. I heard it in (wherever) or on XM or on the Internet and I want to hear it in my howetown. Love, Mildred" You could say other stuff too.

Or just the one sentence.

You can email them at

On their website there are also specific emails for specific staffers, and I encourage you to contact them, too.

Do not be shy. I am always shy, too. If you wanted you could make up a fake name.

Now, I have to go out and get a little Saturday, before the game starts!

love always,


PS: I made a prediction weeks ago the Dodgers would go far, but only as far as the Cardinals would let them. I love them, but they are an inferior team to the Cardinals. And that's just reality. Before the trades, they were inferior but supremely magical. Now, well...

No one will be happier than me if I'm proven wrong.

So go out you motherfuckers and play like you've got nothing to lose, because you don't.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

Lovely lovers:

Short and stuff. Sorry!

I am so happy right now about the whole baseball thing. I don't watch a lot of TV, but I have found recently that I like to have at least one thing on TV through which to engage with the American people. Half the year it's American Idol. Half the year it's baseball. These are acceptable forms of entertainment, as they both involve suspense, a unifying sense of group-experience, and a larger dramatic arc that unfolds over the course of months. These provide me with a comforting sense of ritual in my solitary domestic life. They are my buddies, if you will. In the sense that they engage the imaginations of a large group, and make us feel connected, I would even say these entertainments are the closest TV can get to the unique power of radio.

Go Dodgers!

(Go Angels, too.)

(But not too far.)

(And go Twins.)

I never told you about my whole visionquest. I really did go to the Alamo. Maybe at some point I will have recovered my joy enough to describe to you the whole experience.

love forever,


ps: John Edwards is just plain lovely.

Saturday, October 02, 2004

Saturday Night's All Right For Opiates!

I am back from my visionquest. Having travelled hundreds of miles, accidentally landing on the doorstep of the Alamo, offering up my heart's desire and returning home today with no sleep in my hair, but lots of confetti, I feel I have finally earned that last half a Vicodin in my medicine cabinet.

Now onto something more important:

My mother Faith's birthday!

I am so proud of my beautiful, brilliant, soulful, triumphant mother, who became a rock star at some point in her 60s, and now must fend off her groupies with a carpet beater. (The Cape Ann is a great way to start, but my personal favorite is The Empress of One, because it recalls that feeling you get at the end of high school when suddenly it seems that all the rules are melting, and your parents can't control you, and you are becoming yourself at such speed that everything around you looks magnified, including the stars.)

But I like all her books, like the one where a lady has an affair with the god Pan in the woods along the St. Croix River, and they save the area from horrible creeping suburbanism. No shit! (Hey, Bob Dylan isn't the only native Minnesotan to see the landscape in mythical terms.) This one is called Mrs. Demming and the Mythical Beast. Weird because I think she was writing it before Jitterbug Perfume came out. She's always had this Pan fetish.

My mother has given me innumerable gifts, some ineffable. But the ones I've been enjoying lately with glee are:

1. an appreciation of beer and baseball

2. the joy of gardening

3. cottage feelings

4. open irreverence for the Church and other hypocritical venues for the coagulation of economic and political power.

5. salty roasted peanuts in the shell

I wish she were here for her birthday instead of in Minnesota, and we could drink some beer and listen to the Dodgers kicking Giant ass on KFWB News 980, my favorite station in L.A. lately. (If you can't get sentimental about AM news/traffic/baseball radio, you might want to get your heart checked out.)

I know she'd be rooting for them all and I know she'd give props to Jose Lima for being a den mom supreme.

My mom has a special appreciation for enthusiasts, as she is one herself--and she knows the conscious choice involved in becoming and remaining an enthusiast.

My mom roots for the person who wants to "be somebody," to do something brave and useful. In her eyes, I think, it is a sin to discourage the tall poppy (and, of course, the short one) from reaching toward the sun.

My mom has also worked harder than anyone I know. I actually get tired just thinking about how hard she has worked. My hope is that now, the only work she does is the work of her soul.

Happy birthday, Mom! I hope this is your happiest and most enthusiastic year yet!



Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Hi Kids!

I'm going on a visionquest and won't be around for a few days. Wish me all kinds of luck. Maybe even say a prayer. I believe in the power of prayer. You could say a prayer for me.

A note to gentleman callers:

Your hostess is an old-fashioned girl. I am always interested in meeting new people, including intriguing young men. However, as in mideast conflicts, it's all about how you get into it. Call me superficial, but as the saying goes, a picture tells a thousand words. And a thousand words tell a lot, too.

keep the faith!


Friday, September 24, 2004

hey ladies!

especially lisa--yeah, finally pop vultures is on in the twin cities. city pages just did a cool article about the show, which you can read here. sorta funny how pete, the writer, mentions we've gotten drunk together! i don't remember that, but all those minneapolis indie rock drunk winter nights run together in a sentimental fog in my memory. oh, the red dragon, how i miss you. we used to call pete positive pete, back in the days when we were all together at cp, because of his "sex-positive" attitude.


My Daddy wrote to me:

"Re, today's rockblog--Another magical space in LA is the waiting room at

Union Station. A great place to just sit for an hour at mid-day, with

the light streaming through the windows and the occasional pigeon

flapping down from the rafters to pick up a crumb. A good place to

write, too. I hope they haven't slicked it up too much with the


My dad is so awesome.

No milk today.

It wasn't always so.

Also, no time for blog.

I will say this much. Somehow, tonight, despite incredible odds, I got a five-minute crush on Eric Gagne. That's right. So-not-cute Eric Gagne. For five minutes, tonight, I would have totally made out with Eric Gagne, if he had been in my bedroom watching the Dodger game with me, which would have been unlikely, since he was pitching.

It was his mastery, combined with his humanity.

The day his slump began, I heard him on KROQ, on the Kevin and Bean show in the morning. They were all foaming and you're-so-awesoming him, and he said, I get nervous every time, and I get scared, and I don't know if I'll do it. And then, that day, he didn't do it.

So you see, he is a human superhero, which makes him sexier to me.

And let's not even get into the whole Guns 'n Roses thing.

Goodnight, Eric.



Tuesday, September 21, 2004

sometimes you go out when you don't really feel like it and it sucks. sometimes, you go to the magic castle and you remember how magical life is, underneath all the reasons to forget, and beneath all the words of all the people who have forgotten, and who kind of wish you'd forget too.

the magic castle is one of the things that deeply right with l.a.

1. the magic castle

2. the new beverly cinema

3. dodger stadium

4. the rustic

5. beverly hot springs

6. griffith park

7. elysian park

8. hollywood bowl

9. the mayan theater

10. hotel figueroa

11. santa monica pier

12. that seafood place on pch north of malibu

these are but a few.

this trip to the magic castle was so soulfully energizing, i may consider starting a whole new ritual. here's the idea for the ritual:

every month when it comes pms time, when i can't make a single decision even about which socks to wear, and the solitude of my house is more than i can bear, yet i can't imagine where to go, i will do what i did sunday night: i will go somewhere totally weird and new (to me) in l.a. and have an adventure.

it is the pms adventure concept.

i think an adventure is a good way to distract oneself from a restless foggy brain.



Wednesday, September 15, 2004

i should be at the tsar show but my stommy won't let me, cuz of bad chinese food last night. oops! instead i been in bed watching the world music awards which is basically where they give badges to the biggest sellouts. such a parade of decay and sickness i have not seen in a while. latoya jackson and scott weiland provided the damage factor proudly while avril didn't even seem to know they were making fun of her by jokingly comparing her to black flag and the sex pistols.

i thought if i smoked two cigs it would move things along inside me and it kind of did, but not enough. i should probably just try to go to sleep and see if the morning is kind.

they may be a bunch of creepy midgets but i'll say this: no one at the awards lip-synched except hillary duff and i expect we should all be grateful.

rock on tsar!



Monday, September 13, 2004

Hi, Gurn Blensden:

Too tired to write much, really. So tired, everything seems dark and bad, dry and isolated. But it's only because I'm tired from partying super hard for two days at a sleepaway-camp wedding, between justin and shannon.

i owe justin and shannon more than they know; they unwittingly have been a part of important romantic moments for me, and my supercherry washer/dryer also comes form them originally.

seeing them get married felt very natural and right and i felt love hanging in the air all around me like golden pears, which i plucked regularly and shared with my friends.

more later perhaps on the specifics and the photos of the wedding and all that. let's say that it was, for me, the party of the year, involving singing and playing guitar until six am; witnessing numerous meteors; interpretive dance; trespassing on blair witch lands; cute boys; heavy rich talks; memories of my youth and my future (yes, memories of my future) mingling lightheartedly like friends at a barn dance.

i'm so lucky





Tuesday, September 07, 2004

foo foo

my mom used to say that. i think it means, well, actually i'm not sure what it means. i think it means something like, "fuck!" like, when she just didn't have the energy to say "fuck," she'd laugh and say "foofoo." of course my mom uses the word fuck all the time so don't go thinking she's some weird oppressed christian housewife with laura ashley shit in the bathroom.

and toilet paper cozies. oh, man. toilet paper cozies.

anyway, um, so yeah, let's see. well, i spent all of yesterday afternoon and evening with my oldest GFs going back to seventh grade--the immaculate heart girls, the weirdos, the cool girls. i thought they were cool back then and i still think so. we used to buy cigarettes in our school uniforms from pink elephant. i wonder if the girls still do that?

highlights included watching dave chappelle's new dvd, which contains some weirdly unoriginal comedy jokes about native americans, but also contains some poignancy: the soliloquy on grape drink is sad and sweet.

i like how he described the indredients of grape drink: water, sugar, purple.

maybe you had to be there.

we made a list of over-the-counter anti-depressants:

1. wearing clogs (kind of like "you just can't play a sad song on a banjo," you can't be mopey while wearing clogs.)

2. cruising on a bike. not mountain biking up hills and shit. just cruising, like maybe around silverlake reservoir or on the path at the beach.

3. wearing a good hat. elexa hat a really floppy straw hat that was really cute and floppy as hell. the hat equivalent of a rag doll. i can see how wearing this would make malaise improbably, if not impossible.

4. Dave Chappelle or Ellen Degeneres (I don't know about these because I don't watch their shows. i would say comedy records, videos or cds in general are crucial in anyone's "pharmacy." my choice is "The Rutles," or occasionally Steve Martin's LPs.)

5. Benicio del Toro, in general

6. A pedicure: "Hint, put flowers on your big toes!" (whoever put this on the list dotted her exclamation point with a flower; pitifuly, I don't know how to do that with a computer keyboard.)

7. Lemondrops---or Lemonheads, depending on which way you swing. (i swing lemondrops.)

8. Popsicles OR Big Sticks

9. Toby (my dog. cuddling with Toby gives me a tingly rush of endorphins through my whole body, especially in my heart area.)

10. beer bongs

11. water balloon fight

12. good sunglasses you like

13. buying yourself good flowers (i personally recommend my secret garden, across the street from immaculate heart.)

14. going to the dog park, even if you don't have a dog. there's good energy there and plus all the dogs.

15. driving PCH around santa monica-malibu. this one is dicey because yes, it's great but it can also be quite wistful for me. but yeah, the ocean is really the only real thing. i know you know what i mean.

16. beverly hot springs--you cannot be depressed when torturing your body with three-minute intervals of ice water and boiling water for an hour. plus, you can't be depressed for at least 12 hours after. it's just impossible.

17. truffles.

18. go to new york

19. go to the record store

20. as archie sang, "when you're feeling sad and blue, kissing is the thing to do." any kind of sexual acitvity. but see i'm usually depressed because i don't have anyone to kiss, right? so go figure that one out.

The rest are my own private ideas:

21. playing guitar and singing--weirdly painful at times, in a good way, and makes all the dumb bad pain go away

22. writing--anything. diary, letter, email, blog, article, even. writing, writing, writing, magic, magic.

23. a good boy-buddy who excites your imagination but not your heart.

24. my big all-time sure-fire mainstay best friend over-the-counter anti-depressant: strong coffee and a workout. I challenge anyone suffering from malaise or dysthemia to do this and stay sad.

serious clinical depression, i wouldn't presume to know. i'm quite sure beer bongs are a bad idea.


kate, on behalf of vanessa, elexa, halle, samantha and kristy

Monday, September 06, 2004


I know that guy retracted his earthquake prediction, and it was supposed to happen today at the latest, and it didn't, etc. But something's up, because not only is it hot Santa Ana times, but my dog has taken to compulsively sniffing the ground. Wandering my property, wandering the house, sniffing the ground. As if he were looking for a place to pee or following a trail---but never peeing and never finding anything. Just sniffing. He's never done this before, and I know because after having to housetrain him for months, I am hypersensitive to all his ground-sniffing behaviors.

Maybe you don't know but dogs sniff the ground before earthquakes.

I am telling you this with the understanding that by announcing this, I will jinx the possibility of an earthquake. So if there's no earthquake, you can thank me.



Thursday, September 02, 2004

Hi Kids!

I missed my old blog today, so i just decided for the heck of it to bring it back for a day. I missed the star.

My pink blog is still there, at this location.

Can you even believe how hot it is today? We're finally getting into the real heart of the heat, the time of year when earthquakes incubate like babies under the ground and the dry wind blows straight into you. Good weather for drying up acne and hanging laundry.

Speaking of laundry, shit. My friend Julio gave me his washer-dryer. It's really fancy and stacky. I have never had my own laundry in my life, except growing up. having my own laundry is a huge change in my life. Somehow, one of the most powerfully soothing sounds in life is the sound of laundry in a dryer. The ticking of buttons against the metal, or the thumping of sneakers. it reminds me of a happy feeling, when i'm loved.

But it doesn't end there: my landlady is also long-term loaning me her fancy ass espresso machine. I feel like such a cool girl. I have a garden and coffee and laundry. oh, wow.

Have you heard the Kanye West song "Jesus Walks"? It's really good. I feel like this kind of music is exactly what we need in pop music right now (among other things)--a combination between catchiness and topical relevance. Rock has gotten so dislocated from real life--which you need, to an extent. But enough is enough.

speaking of real life, i'm going to walk my dog and show him a good time.


lots of love,


Sunday, August 29, 2004

the greek ideal

Body and Mind, together, all hot and shit.

And now: A Salute to my Olympic Heartthrobs!

Aaron Peirsol, swimming gold medalist!

Liu Xiang (left), golden hurdler, the first Chinese to win gold in track and field!

And Jordan Jovtchev, the Bulgarian Lord of the Rings!

I am sad, because the Olympics are over!

Aw, shucks!

During the closing ceremony, I was a puddly mess, moaning out loud repeatedly, it's so cool...

Could you believe the spiralling field of wheat representing infinity?

Could you believe it when that 10-year-old orphan girl leaned forward, blew a little puff of air, and the enormous Olympic torch went out?

Could you believe it when they did that special about the Olympics that were held in the Nazi prison camp during WWII? Could you believe the Nazis let them do it, and even saluted the Olympic flag?

Can you believe how cool people can be sometimes?

Here's to one of the best things about being human.

There was some really messed up stuff that went down with the judges, but the athletes were dreamy.

Thank you to all the athletes for being so beautiful.

And to Greece for kicking ass. I can really relate to a nation of perfectionistic procrastinators.

This was the best Olympics ever.




Thursday, August 26, 2004

a whole damn week


Wow, it's been a whole week. My dog, who closely resembles the dog on the right (but, somehow, looks even more dopey and befuddled), got lost on Saturday, and it was a big traumarama. I found him nine hours later but I could not bear to leave him alone and didn't go to Sunset Junction or anything.

He's the hormonal equivalent of a 14 year old boy right now and his natural yearnings are leading him to dig holes into other people's backyards. This is a big stress for me. We made an appointment today for him to get snipped.

I will not feel too sad about that, after all.

I partly have to blame Brendan Benson for this event.

You see, I was cleaning my house with righteous Saturday-morning energy, listening to his album "Lapalco," and did not even notice Toby's absence for a long time. Damn you, Brendan Benson!

Also, this week has been one of incredible nesting: basically, going through my entire house and throwing out and reorganizing everything. While watching the Olympics. If you know anything about my "lifestyle" and have ever seen my car, you know this has been a long time coming. It's not finished or anything, either. I mean, I still haven't alphabetized my CDs!

Needless to say, I have also been working on recording for Pop Vultures at the amazing studio down the street.

This is the funnest activity in the world with the exception of a couple things.

This week I recorded with the remarkable Zoe Rogers, 14, a DJ at Little Radio, and her cool dad, Ian.

Ian gave the studio cat a shoulder massage and sang the praises of Willie Nelson's positive melancholy. In short, he's a peach.

Now, I have to go again!



Friday, August 20, 2004


i am so fed up with britney right now i refuse to post a picture of her on my blog. but i did see the new people cover (or "us," or whatever the fuck) where she's posing with her thoroughly creepy BF and her little dog, and the headline is 'we're engaged!' i find it telling that she isn't touching the dude, but seems to be showing off the dog. the dog's getting all her love, really. you can see it. the dog's making her feel safe, the dog's got her heart, she trusts the dog; the dog knows the real girl.

this is the power of dogs.

i got to run.



Monday, August 16, 2004

spaceball ricochet

I know I am small, but I enjoy living anyway.

Went to the Dodger-Marlins game to see what would happen with LoDuca. The fans cheered for him like nuts every time, and even cheered when they brought out Mota. And tonight the Dodgers sucked. I knew they would as soon as we took out seats.

"The Dodgers will lose tonight. They don't have the heart to beat LoDuca."

And they didn't. How could they beat LoDuca, squatting there in the one place in the world he feels most at home?

LoDuca, who's hitting something like .415 now?

LoDuca, whom all the cynics and number-crunchers said was no good after the all-stars.

I don't have much hope for the Dodgers.

I do have hope for the fans, though. Not only did they know which players to cheer for, but during the "AOL Sessions" contest, they got to choose between hearing Sheryl Crowe, the Cure, and David Bowie, and they chose Bowie.

Let the people decide.

Now, poetry.

Thanks for this poem, Tony. (I do cry.)


by charles bukowski

there's a bluebird in my heart that

wants to get out

but I'm too tough for him,

I say, stay in there, I'm not going

to let anybody see you.

there's a bluebird in my heart that

wants to get out

but I pour whiskey on him and inhale

cigarette smoke

and the whores and the bartenders

and the grocery clerks

never know that

he's in there.

there's a bluebird in my heart that

wants to get out

but I'm too tough for him,

I say,

stay down, do you want to

mess me up?

you want to screw up the works?

you want to blow my book sales in Europe?

there's a bluebird in my heart that

wants to get out

but I'm too clever, I only let him out

at night


when everybody's asleep.

I say, I know that you're there,

so don't be sad.

then I put him back,

but he's singing a little

in there,

I haven't quite let him die

and we sleep together like that

with our

secret pact

and it's nice enough to

make a man weep,

but I don't weep,

do you?

Sunday, August 15, 2004

i heart search engines

some of the more original recent search words for visitors to my blog:

"keanu Reeves" Depressed

tell me how to use sally hansen suddenly nails

sullivan's livestock show equipment

"Gay Icon" + "Catwoman"

pie on geena davis's face

"where does bowling come from"

pictures of ghosts in Cheremoya Elementary

"dougie fresh" and scientology

kibitz "muddy waters"

african american masseuses in Los Angeles

hillary duff's feet

ukulele cords to honey baby

sleeping with leadies

the history and the person who discovered psychotherpy

pictures of asian millfoil

Saturday, August 14, 2004

meaningful results

Eskimo nebula 5,000 light years from Earth, photographed by Hubble space telescope.

Jan. 23 White House press briefing:

Reporter: But for the sake of clarity, could you please get us a fuller explanation of why Sean O'Keefe plans to end the Hubble program?

SCOTT McCLELLAN: The President wants to make sure that we're focusing our resources on clear missions and on programs that produce meaningful results.

star bear

hi kids.

the news is too awful today, isn't it?

my god.

ok, i have to go cuz i got nothing to say much.

keep your eyes on the stars.



Thursday, August 12, 2004

perfect thursday forever

Today is just such a perfect summer Thursday here in Los Angeles.

cool breeze, light clouds, sunlight

i hear chimes, even.

I have to go clean my whole house and rearrange my new desk area and wang chung the shit out of it.

wish i could write more about music today.



Sunday, August 08, 2004

it's ok

I feel a bit softer toward the foo fighters as i just found out the song "everlong" is apparently about doing drugs and stuff with kurt cobain.

it never felt ingenuous to me as a song about boy-girl romantic love; but i'll buy it as a sort of lament/tribute to rock/drugs love.

Friday, August 06, 2004

a note

Someone left a shlumpy comment about the previous post, to which I say:

Please read more carefully. When I say "some men," I mean some men; I do not mean "all men." And if I ever say "all men," I will mean "all men."

I wish some people read more carefully.

But then again, I wish everyone wore white slacks and lipstick, too.

I'm going to see the Dodgers tonight!



Thursday, August 05, 2004

yeah man

i sent paul loduca a thank-you card yesterday. i read an article where he's acting all tough-guy now, saying stuff like, i could care less about the dodgers; i just wanna kick their asses in two weeks...

it's funny how some men deal with stuff like rejection and grief. i mean, it's so transparent, so obvious he cares sooooo much. as he should.

but yes, he should be pissed, and he should want to kick their asses, and i hope he does.

it's funny how some men say the exact opposite of how they feel in the vain belief that people will buy it.

i used to think that people said how they feel. but they really don't. i don't know how we all get by without saying how we feel, but i know people who speak almost entirely in untruths--like this one girl who's a pathological liar. everything she says is truth turned inside out and slow-roasted on a spit in the fire of self-hatred. she's incredibly articulate---inside an upside-down world of insanity.

or this other guy i used to know who wasn't a liar per se, but who had sort of hand-built this gerry-rigged persona from his own bones and blood and shards of painful memory. he wore this identity much like a gorilla suit to hide and protect himself from the world, but i suspect it got awful stuffy in there.

but that's got nothing to do with paul loduca.

Tuesday, August 03, 2004


I wrote this before but didn't post it till now 'cuz of the whole Pamela thing.

I'm still terribly upset about it. I actually cried.


Saturday July 31

I can't handle it. I can't handle it. We had such a good thing going. We had "It"--the thing that turns mere work into an act of love; that makes success probable, and failure bearable--we had style, we had glamour and fun; we had honesty; we had chemistry.

Now, I just don't know what. The Dodgers' bosses took a gorgeous, weird, number-one team, a team of friends who really knew and respected each other, a team anchored by a brilliant catcher, who also happened to be an ace hitter, and they decided the team would be better off losing its single most important player. Its core. Sure, Gagne's a rock star, but he stands on LoDuca's shoulders. And LoDuca isn't only brilliant; he loves Los Angeles.

I don't know shit about baseball whatsoever; I didn't even know that they traded players in the middle of the season. What the fuck is up with that? That's like dumping your girlfriend in the middle of summer or right before Christmas: It's out-of-sync with the rhythms of nature. You dump your loser jerk boyfriend or girlfriend between New Year's and June.

And if your boyfriend or girlfriend is a totally kickass genius team-player who helps you to be more happy and fun and successful, you don't dump them. You marry them. And you ride out the ups and downs of the season together.

I sound like a female Tony Pierce; it's so weird. I don't mean to.

This is from the Dodgers' official corporate website, so I can only imagine how outraged everyone must actually be:

"The trade rocked the clubhouse, where the Dodgers have credited their close-knit chemistry as one factor in their success.

'There's a lot of sad faces in here,' said veteran Jose Lima. 'I don't want to create a war, but breaking up a first-place team, wow, that's something. We accomplished this together. We overcame adversity, people not believing in us. I don't make the decisions.'

Shawn Green agreed.

'Right now, it's hard to fathom,' he said."

I didn't used to like LoDuca because I thought he was just a cocky dope. But I came to understand that he's salt of the earth: He's the guy you want as your older brother; and even if he were your little brother, he'd live like your older brother. He's Johnny on the spot, with a good heart.

"Paul Lo Duca cried and talked openly about the pain of leaving the only organization he has ever known. 'I always dreamed about being a Dodger for my whole life, having a 20-year career, but I guess it didn't happen. It's tough, so many friends I've made along the way. The fans in L.A., they treated me so well. It's tough.'"

I predict after they fire Jim Tracy, Paul LoDuca will be back.

That's who they really should have traded. Traded him for a funny monkey with a tiny organ that plays "She Bangs."

Sugar, Sugar

I just found this snippet of a 1973 conversation recorded by Lester Bangs, who is my own personal George Orwell. (George Orwell is ... uh... my own personal George Martin. Who is my own personal Jesus.)

Lester Bangs was probably drunk, and his subject certainly was, and there's a good chance this was written down later, from memory. However, I have total faith in his memory for such things, drunk or not.

Bangs: (Sort of baiting him) Hey Lou, doncha think Bowie's a no-talent asshole?

Lou Reed: No! he's a genius! He's brilliant!

Bangs: Aah, c'mon, what about all that outer "Space Oddity" shit? That's just Paul Kantner garbage!

Reed: It is not! It's a brilliant masterpiece! Oh, you are so full of shit!

Bangs: It was dogshit. Why don't you get off all this crap and just try being banal for a change? Why doncha write a song like "Sugar, Sugar"? That'd be something worthwhile!

Reed: I don't know how. I would if I could. ... I wish I'd written it...

Finally I know what I already knew. I already knew it, I tell you. I already knew.

Sunday, August 01, 2004

Yes, You Can!

Ahoy Maties. Remember how I wrote about interviewing Pamela Anderson and David LaChapelle? It must have been a slow gossip week, because the NY Post ran an excerpt from my blog on Page Six, but misspelled LaChapelle's name and bleeped out the profanities--which made the story considerably less fun.

In any case, I feel obliged to clarify, the interview was for Black Book Magazine.

(It freaks me out: The NY Post didn't try to verify any of that information--at least not with me. I could have totally made it all up. Isn't that terrifying?)

Now, speaking of fun and profanity, commenter Kristy raises an Important Question.

She writes, "I got wind of your radio program (Pop Vultures) and thought it was great. Is there something I can do to try and get my local public radio to subscribe since I am a member?"

Yes, Kristy, there is!

By the way, for any new friends, Pop Vultures is a weekly radio show wherein music geeks in Hollywood, New York City, Chicago, St. Louis, the Twin Cities and beyond get together--over the phone or in-studio--to argue about pop music and everything else--and play the records we're debating. A discussion of Outkast leads us inevitably to T. Rex and, somehow, "Snoopy Vs. The Red Baron." Similarly, talk of the Neptunes brings up Jerry Lee Lewis, Run-DMC and Tommy James and the Shondells.

I definitely don't want to be all braggy and crap, but some types of people are saying Pop Vultures is the first NPR show since This American Life to have a unique sound. Actually this one dude from the NY Times Magazine said it's the descendant of This American Life, in part because it sounds nothing like This American Life.

To me, it's kind of like how Quiet Riot descended from Mott the Hoople, but sound nothing like them.

Or, maybe, how peanut butter was conceptually derived from butter, but tastes nothing like it. Or...

Bang your head!

Curiously, the show was conceived by Garrison Keillor and is produced by his radio company and distributed by Minnesota Public Radio. I am the host, writer, and coproducer.

Here's a cool article where people talk about the show.

But ANYWAY. Kristy brings up an interesting issue.

Because our show is unique, some stations need a little encouragement to open their minds to our crazy new-fangled sound. So, Kristy, and anyone else, here's what you do. Email the program director or general mailbag at your local NPR affiliate.

NPR has a station finder to help you locate your local station's website.

We're already on in several great American cities and numerous funky small towns--and will be on XM satellite radio beginning in September. We're especially eager to find homes in New York, Boston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Detroit.

Classical and news stations are probably not interested.

If you need any advice on what to say, remember, it doesn't hurt to mention your subscription! Or, you could say, "Gee, I'd gladly subscribe to KCRW---if you aired Pop Vultures."

KCRW is a lost cause, but it wouldn't hurt to let 'em know what's up!

And, a final note: We're deep into production on our new season and it's so exciting, with crazy music---the episode we just finished features Fantasia Barrino, the Stooges, Mozart, Herman's Hermits, Benny Goodman and "Plastic Ono Band," among others. Plus, we've got several new Vultures in the house from different parts of the country and different generations.

These will become available in the fall.

The old episodes up on the website are so last year.



Friday, July 30, 2004

"This Is Enough"

She told the Times. "We have to react."

I know you probably heard this story a long time ago but i still like it.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

my theory

stands, and apologies to tony pierce, dylan callaghan, emmanuelle richard and any other upstanding L.A.-transplants. BUT, it must be said that the worst, most "Hollywood" people I've met are from out of town. They move here from wherever the fuck and think they have to act like assholes to fit in.

but enough negativity. it's time to be positive. so i'm going to go walking.



Tuesday, July 27, 2004

the weirdos

hi guys

it's hard doing my radio show, pop vultures, because i send all my records out to minnesota to be used on the show, and then i have to get through my days without them. i miss them so. it's ridiculous to try and live right now, at this moment, without "plastic ono band." you may as well ask me to live without coffee or my bed. it's even worse trying to get around without "a kind of hush" by herman's hermits. i rely on this album the way some people rely on meditation. my t. rex is gone, too.

this summer has been beautiful and heavy. everything is different since sloopy died. maybe it's the war, too. i feel death and endings around me. people are driving like angry maniacs. today i was stuck on one of those narrow, winding streets in the hills behind a really bad, slow driver. someone behind me got impatient and went around us and got squished. it was collectively the worst driving i'd seen in a while--and the kind of mistake that's awful because you know that the impatient woman just knew she was fucking up--she knew it--but she just manically continued as if she couldn't stop.

people need to be careful in their cars; they need to be careful in cars just as they need to be careful in what they say to other people. you've got to resist the mania, because if you let it take you over, you can do damage without meaning to. and you'll hurt yourself, too. like that woman. it turned out the bad slow driver didn't have insurance.

sorry to be preaching, but i've been thinking a lot about how people seem to be mean and stressed and lashing out wantonly at the people around them.

last week was super bizarre. i found out i'd been back-stabbed by someone i thought was my friend--that was surreal! then i had to interview pamela anderson and the photographer david lachapelle at the chateau marmont. that made a surreal week supersurreal.

the interview was probably the most emotionally disastrous interview i've ever done--but maybe interesting, too, because i happened to catch these two divas on a strange night when she was totally manic and stir-crazy and he was exhausted, and they let me have it. apparently i'd offended her somehow at the start of the interview, and from that point, nothing i said was right, to her. everything i said she sort of said back to me as a question. i made the mistake of calling his photography "camp," and this opened a hornet's nest of nastiness. they ended up caling me a bitch and a cunt, as a "joke"---"you have to understand his humor," someone said. i've never been called a cunt by an interviewee before. this was a first for me. also, i noticed pamela anderson needed to be the center of attention -- when someone started asking me about myself, she interrupted to ask if they had any makeup. "do you have any makeup? can you do my makeup? i did my makeup myself. does that mean i'm not famous anymore?"

she seems to live in a self-constructed mental reality where she is the queen of everything. i know a lot of people like that. maybe we're all kind of like that, in our ways. as john lennon would say, hey, whatever gets you through the night, baby. i know it sucks to be in love with an addict. that sucks. and i wonder what it's like to build your whole identity around silicone.

there were tons of famous weirdos there that night, like ali g. and jimmy iovine. hollywood freaks my shit out. everyone thinks they're an "artist," and they use that word as a kind of get out of jail pass for being complete whores.

but i'd rather have people call me a bitch and get pissed off at me than be completely fake robots--that's the worst insult of all, really. there's very little worse than being patronized, and even though those two thought they were patronizing me, their anger betrayed them. like they said, hollywood really is the epicenter of all insecurity.

that hollywood is, anyway. i avoid that hollywood like herpes. i don't know how people can be happy in an environment of meanness 24/7. it's no wonder people like the boob-lady are all obsessed with "spirituality." how do you build a life when you're always falling through thin air?

anyway, all's i'm saying is, be careful out there.

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

the like

go here, click on "music," and listen to the song "bridge to nowhere." is it just the pms or is it too beautiful, and lovely enough to make me cry today on this hot afternoon?

you may not know this, but i get flak from player haters who don't like how much i use the word "like" on my radio show. ah, well.

have you ever noticed how the delete button is faster than the backspace button? i just deleted a bunch of stuff i didn't like. the beauty of the blog is that unlike newsprint, you can just delete shit.

rock on brothers and sisters.

Monday, July 19, 2004

good people

maybe it's the beer. maybe it's the pms.

(and by the way, on my show i discovered this amazing mary j. blige song called "pms," which includes the following lyrics:

i'm down and out in depression.

i think the worst of everything.

my lower back is aching, and my clothes don't fit.


ain't that a bitch.)

anyway, maybe it's that stuff, or maybe it's the impending National Crisis--can you feel it coming? i feel it in my bones like disease.

but tonight, i just want to take every single lovely person i've ever known into my arms and hug them good and tight, till they squeak.

i wish to ask the universe to consider them the next time the gods are giving out the extra lovin', the surplus good luck, the unforeseen windfalls, the happiness and health, the moments of perfection, the dreams fulfilled and the wounds healed.

Monday, July 12, 2004

the worst dream

Some chewing gum was stuck in my teeth and I pulled and this whole set of hollow teeth came out of my mouth, with plastic gums. Apparently I had a fake facade system going, and underneath my real teeth were filed down to little pointy bits and were all brown.

This image must have come from watching the Swan, where this one woman had hugely gnarly teeth issues, including a sort of fake tooth thing she had to put in every morning.

I never want to watch The Swan again. I hope it never ever comes back. Die, Swan, die!

The thing I hated the worst was the weird nebulously European host-woman (who I think was actually Irish, which is tragic), who was some sort of Patsy for the beauty industry and arbiter of her own sex's servitude, total lady uncle tom. What a fucking phoney. Don't get me started. Getting in shape is one thing, man, but the worst thing was the kind of underlying violence toward women's bodies--shit, not even underlying. Right there on the surface. The drive to chop up women's bodies, because let's face it, the female form is the most powerful thing in the world. Fuck you fuckers. I hope you get sliced up with your own instruments and you are blinded and suddenly learn the life of the senses that has existed all along outside the borders of your perception, you sad idiot.

The worst thing in the world is idiots who don't know they're idiots.

Sunday, July 11, 2004

sunday again

The day is winding down and I am glad to be alive, because even though people can sometimes be a bummer, the air is full of kindly spirits.

You can contact them by saying Hi.

I went to see Spidey yesterday. I liked it. I don't know if it's "good" or whatever, but I enjoyed the love story and I discovered that this Tobey McGuire person is kind of sexy. I never expected that. Not one little bit. But he is. I am such a sucker for pretty boyish boys with big blue eyes and secret superhero lives.

It's important to be a superhero, don't you think?

There are lots of ways to be a superhero, and only you can figure out your way. And whatever it is, it'll probably be something no one could have imagined.

Right now, I am going to become a Housecleaning Superhero. They call me the Swiffer. Wet Swiffer, actually.

Have you tried the Wet Swiffer? Oh my gosh, it's delicious. It smells chemically sweet and fake and wonderful. It makes me want to be a better mother. To Tobey. You know, the dog. Now I think maybe Tobey was a good name for a whole reason.

He's added a few names recently. Now it's Sir Tobey Tyler Circus Boy Dreamweaver Spookytooth Belch the First.



Thursday, July 08, 2004

couple a things

First: Do you listen to AM news traffic radio in L.A. like I do? KFWB 980 in particular? Yeah? Then maybe, like me, you're starting to get all hinky feeling from all those "eharmony dotcom" commercials with this creepy man going, "lota happy couple out there tonight thanks to eharmony dot com." It's so creepy.

Also, is anyone else tired of getting all janky feeling from all those creepy "On Star" commercials with live calls from people in car crashes and stuff? Life is stressful enough; I don't need to hear the real-life sound of human terror in a radio commercial every ten minutes.

I did not yet see Fahrenheit 911 but my 4th of July was literally the best I ever had.

Talk about fireworks.

I live in a neighborhood of crazy Mexican dudes, and they really went for it. And we had a perfect view from my patio. It was the most professional non-professional fireworks show I've ever seen.

Fireworks, starbursts and sparklers are everywhere in my mind.



Tuesday, June 29, 2004

hi love

my mom is coming to stay at the fairy cottage for a week. we're going to garden our asses off. i think maybe we'll go see "fahrenheit 9/11" on the fourth of july.

my friend greg has a new record out that i love. it is wistful, plainspoken and wise, and it makes me cry because i feel i maybe know and love some of the same people he's writing about and he put stuff into words i didn't know how to.



Monday, June 28, 2004

yeah man

i was in minnesota for a while. working on my show. you know.

i was at a reunion for the ucsb paper, the daily nexus, on saturday, even though i didn't go to ucsb. i'm what you call an honorary nexite due to my other affiliations, the prague thing, etc.

on sunday i went to a b-day for a girlfriend from high school. we got in a fight about politics. she thinks one group of elite people rule the country and have done so since the beginning. she sees no important distinction between bush and kerry. she also says she'll never vote again. this seemed weird to me, since, if she's right, that's probably exactly what "they" want her to do. feel all disempowered and shit.

but i love her a lot.

and i'm not saying she's wrong. i think the truth is probably shrouded somewhere in the middle.

one thing i like is that she questions everything.

i question most things, but not everything.

i do question the safety of mercury fillings. i spent most of the day reading up online about them. i have two busted fillings and i'm getting them replaced with non-mercury stuff.

the dental establishment has been lame about this for a long time. it's funny when you figure out that people who are authorities lie about stuff. like asbsestos, or tobacco, or hormone replacement therapy. i think about this with lots of things we haven't yet fully studied, such as the safety of cell phones, the pill, and new country.

speaking of country, i found the new loretta lynne record to be a real meaty chunk of lady-heart barbecued to crusty juicy loveliness.

i want to listen to it right now.

i love you.


ps: if you want to buy me a present, go here. i just saw their ad at the top of my blog. they make houses to go in fairy gardens. do you think they put that ad there because i wrote about my fairy garden? do you think if i start writing about jack white again, they'll put up an ad where you can buy a kiss from jack white?

Sunday, June 13, 2004



Last night in a fit of desperation I named the dog, with the help of my friend Julie. He is named after a character from Twelfth Night, who drinks too much, carouses and represents the triumph of the chaotic spirit.

So his name is Toby, after Sir Toby Belch.

But, you see, I also wanted to name him a funny musical name. So his full, formal name is Sir Toby Spookytooth Dreamweaver Belch the First. This way, I can call him Spookytooth or Dreamweaver whenever I want.

I have 10,041 things to do today.

rock on,


Tuesday, June 08, 2004

kick ass

first it was the wedding singer. then it was no doubt. now it's reagan nostalgia. if you ask me, this whole '80s revival has gone far enough.

i am tired of people saying reagan ended communism. anyone who's been to eastern europe knows, communism ended communism.

read this now.

i need a new patriotism and tony pierce is articulating it beautifully, even though he spells mediocrity wrong.

Sunday, June 06, 2004

lavender sunday


i planted a fairy garden today. i figured the fairies would probably start showing up tonight. and they did! my neighbor manny came to see the puppy and he did a fairy dance because he's a garden fairy.

anyway, jeff w. and dan from tsar are playing acousticalistically tonight on indie 103 sometime around 11 (?)

i think it's on ye old web too

then monday night they're playing at ye olde viper roome for some indie 103 local bands celebration or something, five bucks (i think!)



Friday, June 04, 2004

Aright, Tony:

Your first blurry image of "Mr. Winkie," as photographer Matt called him.

Other possible names:

Mr. Puppy


George Huff

Little Willy (that's a Sweet reference, you pervert)

The Dog Formerly Known As Puppy



Hoagy Stardust

Jarvis "Cocker"

Joe "Cocker"

These are jokes.


Remember if you will I am most fond of T. Rex and the Zombies, Hello Kitty, hearts and love, the band Heart and things of this nature; it would mean a lot to have a name that reminded me of them.

I'm not into literary names right now.

Or masculine names. I want goofy; thus the appeal of Izzy (and Sloopy).

Tuesday, June 01, 2004

I Tell You What

Want to know something so cute? Go here and read Tony Pierce's cute interview with the New York Times.

What else?

I am braindead because I finally got a real dog, and it's a baby, and I'm sleeping in short bits and very loopy all of the time. I don't have a pic yet but basically he is a cross between a tiny muppet, a tiny ewok, and a tiny stuffed animal toy. He makes lots of snuffling noises all of the time, especially when he is excited. He also does a ton of Sloopy-isms such as: handing you his paw for no apparent reason, repeatedly; peeing in the middle of the pathway outside my door; and lying on his back so you can have your way with his belly, all of the time. He is excellent and as yet no name seems sufficiently great for him.

Also I just had a beer.

Now it is time to go to bed.

I feel happy.

I spoke on the phone with my hero, Jeff Barry, and he told me he sings the last bits of vocals on Van Morrison's "Brown Eyed Girl." His best friend Bert Burns produced it (who wrote "Hang On Sloopy" and "Twist and Shout"), and they needed extra vocals. Jeff Barry was ace at vocal imitations and so that's how it happened. And now you know.

Jeff Barry told me so many things. Like how it felt after he had written "Be My Baby." The song Brian Wilson listens to every single day of his life. He said something on the order of, I didn't think i had just written a timeless classic, but I thought I did a good enough job. I liked the line about "we'll make them turn their heads everywhere we go," because you know how it is, a good-looking couple, and no one had ever written that before in a song.

love forever,


Thursday, May 27, 2004

My Girl

I broke my shoe.

I'm so happy today I'm going out and making "Fantasia Forever" and "I'm Gay 4 Fantasia" T-shirts. Everyone is going to want one.

I'm happy for Fantasia and for everyone who loves her. This is one thing that's for sure definitely right with America today.

Also, her menswear look is unstoppable.

It's difficult to find cool, sexy menswear for girls. I have tried. Big fashion high fives to Fantasia for doing menswear better than Madonna.

I'm so sick of Madonna.

Finally, I have a new idol. Who I really idolize.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Fantasia Forever

How hot is Fantasia? Oh my God.

This is the look she gets when she sings; it's a look no one else in the world gets when they sing.

She's a fierce and dangerous singer.

Fantasia is my very favorite person in the world right now. I mean, next to my beloved friends and family. Fantasia is my one and only favorite Fantasia, and if you get it, you know how much that means. I wanna thank Fantasia for unzipping her heart every week and letting us see what's in there.

Also, I wanna thank her for crying whenever she feels like it, which is every day, because it's about time people knew it's possible to be fierce and tender all at the same time.

The best people are.

Thursday, May 20, 2004

i heart summer

Today I would like to pay tribute to Elvin Jones, the great jazz drummer, who just died. He lived to the age of 324, in bebopper years. Unfortunately, in human years, he was only 76.

Elvin Jones was a sort of sorcerer of rhythm. Or maybe he was a sort of string theorist. He specialized in "polyrhythms," which, as far as I can tell, represent the voice of the Creation itself.

Elvin Jones is best known as the drummer for John Coltrane. I was lucky enough to see him play in a small club in 1991, when he was still touring and way on top of his game. I was not much for drums; but seeing him was like watching someone open a secret door in the air and exposing a wonderland. I never knew there were so many rhythms buried inside of other rhythms, and I never knew beats coiled around each other like DNA. His music may have been the original inspiration for my theory that music is actually a dimension of time-space.

Thank you to Elvin Jones for going where no American, certainly, has ever gone, before or since--all the way down inside the serpent!

Hooray for Elvin Jones.