Thursday, January 27, 2005


today was a good day, have to say. good day. plus it was capped by a wonderbox on my doorstep: my award from The Public Radio Exchange: the PRX Zeitfunk "Most Broadcast Award 2004" (whatever a zeitfunk is!). The award, which is sitting ass-kickingly on my faux-mantle, is a karate guy doing an ass-kicking karate kick. it's the best award ever. thank you PRX for being you!

The OC is on in like half an hour and i still have to run out and get some dinner or something. i'm just so sick of everything i like: hard times pizza, in-n-out, sushi, alegria burritos... i need some new food ideas. ideas?

i wish they made food out of stars and the special feeling you get when you get a wonderbox on your doorstep. this food, i would not get sick of.



Monday, January 24, 2005

O! the blushing whipoorwill:

my laundry is done and it's just so exciting. just so terribly exciting. i purposely bought the non-PC, environmentally damaging laundry soap ("cheer") because it makes your laundry smell like laundry, which is important. the hippie yuppie stuff doesn't make your laundry smell at all. the smell of laundry is one of the best smells in the whole world and i'm not going to be deprived at a time like this.

Tony once again has some great stuff on his blog, this time an essay on how to mend a broken heart. His mind and heart work so differently from mine, I could never follow his advice to the letter--that is, immediately start dating someone or sleeping around after a breakup. However, in spirit, I know what he means. For a guy, a lot of the pain of getting dumped has to do with the sexual ego-damage, and it's good to be reminded you're still hot and whatever. For me, the pain of a breakup has more to do with the death of a dream, the loss of conversation, and a fear of never falling in love again. So, for me, the best way to soothe an aching heart is to dig into new dreams--not romantic ones but fun life dreams; to continue exciting conversation with friends; and to have a new crush. It could be an old crush you drag out from the mothballs, that's OK. You don't even have to necessarily date this person, either. Just talk to 'em, bump into them, feel the flutters again.

I'm a big true-love romantic but I also have crushes from time to time, and they are very comforting to me in times of sadness. A lot of times, my crushes are also feeling sad and lonely and I know I'm not the only one.

My particular line of work, when I'm doing it, certainly provides me with a fairly high-quality stream of crush material. Note: I say crush-material, not BF-material. I've worked in the rock realm long enough to know what's up there. As much as I love rock music, rock culture is the most retardedly lonely, sexually cynical, shallow, boringly male, sexist world in the world. It's a really ugly place and the more money is involved the uglier it gets.

It's funny, though... some of the most memorable love-advice I've gotten has been from rock stars and rock-people:

1. The lead singer of Buckcherry once told me I was codependent, needed to go to Al-Anon, and should give my drunken flame a decisive kick out the door. I guess he should know: He loves the cocaine, and all. I did try Al-Anon once, but the people were so crazy I left there feeling worse than before. (Plus, the God stuff.)

2. The Donnas went "awww" in unison when I told them about getting my heart stomped on once, and then the lead singer told me about their song "I Didn't Like You Anyway," which I think is a bit of Zen brilliance. There's always a moment before you fall in love when you see the person objectively, and all the little annoying things you forget about later. It's useful to remember those things when you need to.

3. Jeff Barry, writer of "Be My Baby," "Sugar, Sugar," and many more, co-architect of my musical/romantic fantasy vision, once told me that I'd spent way too much time with the same guy and it was time to move on. He was so brutal about it, too, which was a terrible shock coming from the man who'd written these lines. Bang shang-a-lang indeed!

4. The manager for Stryper once prayed for me over the phone. It was so awesome. Definitely one of the most moving interview moments yet. She asked me if it was OK if she just started praying for me, and I was like, Let It Rock. She busted out a passionate, heartfelt plea to the Lord on my behalf, and it was so real and so forceful I actually felt something happen in my heart. Something got warm and light inside me. I had never talked to her about my love life, but she said, Kate, there is a dark figure standing next to you, smothering your little light and trying to smother you. Dear Lord, protect beautiful Kate and let her light shine into the world. She has an important gift to bring to the world!

At the time I had no clue I might actually have anything like a gift for the world, but I think she may have been more right than wrong. Even if she was a little freaky and hung up on Christian fanciful boogeymen.

I would like to thank all these people for their cockeyed good will.

But I think Tony knows, maybe better than anyone, that you don't just "get over" someone. You get through it; you get yourself to a point where you actually want to share your heart again, with someone new.

Tony's methods are about survival and avoiding "major depression"--not about magically erasing your feelings for someone. The more you try to do that the more twisted it gets. The only sure methods are lots of time and lots of distance. This is partly why Pamela Anderson can't get over Tommy Lee. They have kids together.

Time and distance. Time and distance. Funny how two forces that don't actually exist can do what nothing else can.

Love 4-ever,


well, it's a new day and that always means a new chance for peace and good times.

it's sunny in los angeles and i'm going to do more laundry than i've ever done in one session in my life. it's going to be cathartic. there will be coffee involved.

ben, my amazing brother, gave me a present yesterday including some original 45s such as "Sugar Suagr/Melody Hill." in light of this i've decided it's time to start collectiing 45s.

i'm going to minneapolis soon, whose "cheapo records" on lake st. has the biggest selection i've seen of 45s. amoeba might be bigger but it's also more expensive, i think.

in other news, the weekend was great for one reason: saturday night i got to play guitar and sing harmonies with matt welch, brendan maze, ben sullivan, greg mcilvaine, os tyler, kim thigpen et al. this was great enough in itself, but we also got to talk a lot about the beach boys. there was talk of having a beach boys listening party where we'd really give time to "Holland," the record matt says is the greatest secret beach boys record ever---none of it written by brian wilson, all of it written in imitation of brian wilson.

also this weekend i learned how to play "little miss sorrow child of tomorrow" on guitar. this is the greatest new song in my life, for now. it's in 6/8, just for starters--and dig that title. (see herman's Hermits' "There's A Kind of Hush All Over the World" LP for this and many other marvels.)



Friday, January 21, 2005

hey guys:

what with this fucking fat-ass weird surreal coronation bullshit and a "leader" so uncool, so unsexy, so unfunny and so unrock it's hard to believe he's even American; and a world in mourning after recent tragic events; and a Democratic party so fucking sold-out and retarded they're a joke, I am currently in a state of meditative masonry. I'm building a beautiful stone retaining wall to terrace off the generous slope of my back/front yard, with help!

So don't read me, but read Tony, who speaks common sense. I have come to realize in the past couple days that this is not a party issue. Lots of republicans hate this guy.

This is a style issue, and a sanity issue. And a Christian issue, to be honest.

I ask you: If Jesus were alive today, and he had to decide how to spend a sum of $40 million in one day, and he could use it to immunize 22 million tsunami-surviving children----or spend it on a party for himself--what would he do?

What would Jesus do?

Just asking.



Monday, January 17, 2005

Know what sets my blood to boiling? This shit. Matt Welch excerpts an LA Times piece dissing freelance journalists thusly:

"Freelancers are the migrant farmworkers of journalism -- cheap labor that fills the gaps left by editorial downsizing and dwindling advertising revenue. As they scramble from publication to publication to make a living, some practice ethical relativism."

I've been a freelancer/contractor my whole goodamn career, and it's not because I couldn't get a full-time job at a goddamn daily newspaper (as if I would have even wanted one!).

Shit, man.

First of all, as a freelancer I have to be extra-ethical, because I have no legal protection from the publications for which I write, with the exception of perhaps one. The standard freelance contract does not protect a writer from lawsuit, however spurious.

Anyway, the really important writers I most admire were contract journalists--especially George Bernard Shaw and Lester Bangs.

Oh, fuck this.

I have work to do!


Thursday, January 13, 2005

"You may be normal but you might feel even better with medication. Antidepressants and anti-anxiety drugs are being prescribed in such a fashion that it's become known as 'cosmetic psychopharmacology.'"

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

who gives what i think, but just for the sake of tradition (?), here's my top 10 albums of 2004, which means records i listened to more than once. for a year in which almost anything but herman's hermits hurt my ears, that's saying something.

Brian Wilson, Smile

Mates of State, All Day EP

Mark Lane, Golden State of Mind (2003 but who cares, he's from l.a. and deserves props)

Loretta Lynn, Van Lear Rose

Kanye West, The College Dropout

Puffy Ami Yumi, Nice (same. i mean, they're from japan but their producer guy is local and so good.)

Shapes of Race Cars, Apocalypse Hurts EP

Gregory Vaine, The Many Sides Of

Tracy Spuehler, It's The Sound

Nancy Sinatra, Nancy Sinatra

special notice--died of joy on first listen, puked a little bit in my throat later, but it's ok:

Nelly McKaye, Get Away From Me

Singles of the Year

Kanye West, Jesus Walks

J-Kwon, Tipsy (best-produced radio hit since I can remember, shit)

Kelis, Milkshake

Usher, Confessions; Burn

Kanye West et al., Slow Jamz

Cee Lo w/Pharrell, The Art of Noise

The Donnas, Fall Behind Me

Courtney Love, Sunset Strip (hey, it was a single on indie 103...)

Avril Lavigne, My Happy Ending (what can i say. i like her voice better than alanis's.)

Best Records of 2004 I Never Heard Cuz I Was Broke, Sad Or Lazy:

Eminem, Encore

Nirvana, that new box set

The Donnas, Gold Record

Gwen Stefani, Love, Angel, Music, Baby

Best Phenomena of the Year

Fantasia Barrino

Duran Duran

Old Icons Retooled By Indie Rockers (Brian Wilson, Nancy Sinatra, Marianne Faithfull, Loretta Lynn)

Sinful Christianity (Kanye West, R. Kelly)

Now, if you like spooky/psychic things, check out this fun tarot website.

Here Comes The Sun!

Today is a day written in tribute to my favorite song.

You know what I mean.

Also, I found out that Pop Vultures has won the Public Radio Exchange's 2004 Most Broadcast Award.

I am going to get a statuette with a karate guy on it!

What I have learned from this experience, and especially from the love letters we've received since being cancelled, is a big deal for me:

It's possible to work with passion.

When you work with passion, your work is special.

When you work passionately, the process is a reward in itself. The props you get are extra.

Innocence is possible after disillusionment. Innocence is different from naivete. Innocence is a choice.

Shucks, didn't mean to get all heavy on you.



Monday, January 10, 2005

December 13th, 2004 6:08 pm

More Questions for Florida

By Kim Zetter / Wired

A government watchdog group is investigating allegations made by a Florida programmer that are whipping up a frenzy among bloggers and people who believe Republicans stole the recent election.

Programmer Clint Curtis claims that four years ago Rep. Tom Feeney (R-Florida) asked his then-employer to write software to alter votes on electronic voting machines in Florida.

He said his employer told him the code would be used "to control the vote" in West Palm Beach County, Florida. But a fellow employee disputed the programmer's claims and said the meetings he described never took place.

more here.

Even if the guy's a total fraud, doesn't this story deserve thorough investigation by our "news" media?

Just, like, wondering. And everything.


Thursday, January 06, 2005

Hooray for Barbara Boxer for standing up for democracy today. She kicks ass. Thank you Barbara Boxer for your huge brass balls. You make me want to be a braver person.

Wednesday, January 05, 2005



Following the final episode of Pop Vultures on KUOW last month we've been getting lots of mail from very sad listeners. I'm hearing from all ages. I've copied below a typical letter from the "adult" segment of our audience:


Jeffrey W. Hansen

Program Director

KUOW 94.9 Seattle

-----Original Message-----

From: B. Postman

Sent: Wednesday, January 05, 2005 2:12 PM


Subject: Cancellation of Pop Vultures

Hi! I'm 57 years old, baby boomer with two teenage sons, faithful listener (and Contributor) to NPR - ATC etc., This American Life, The Splendid Table, and as of the last month, Pop Vultures. Imagine my son's surprise when he came home from college and found me listening to Missy Elliot and Usher! This was my entree into the current pop music culture. I was calling my other 40 & 50-somethings to turn them onto the show, and THEY CANCELLED IT! Even my husband loved it, and he's Mr. Cool and Hip and goes to concerts and knows all the people Kate and wonderful Hillary and the gang talked about!

It was, like, BRINGING OUR FAMILY TOGETHER! We could converse at dinner, instead of me sitting there like a deaf mute or saying things like, "Who is this Mr. Fifty-Cent Piece?"

Bring them back!

Show people that public radio doesn't have to be sombre and stuffy. Even 50 something girls still want to have fun!

B. Postman - Olympia, WA