Saturday, March 31, 2012

Hello, Sunshine

So, do you like my new/old blog? I’m kind of diggin’ it, although so far I haven’t had enough time to devote to writing here. I really want to, though. It’s been a long time since I wrote just for the pure rush of it, for no specific purpose. Writing is one of the great things about being human. I wonder if angels get to write. I can imagine a lot of great things about heaven, but if angels don’t get to write, it can’t really be heaven.

You may have a noticed a slight gap in my blogging habits. Like, five years. Well, I’m sorry. I forgot to blog for five years. Oops.

Having a longstanding blog, then sticking it in the freezer for five years, is equivalent to being Rip Van Winkel. I am Rip Van Winkelblog.

Things are so different now. My blog always looked like shit, even in 2002. But in 2012 it looked like crazy shit. So, as you may have noticed, I sent it to the wash-and-brush-up ladies for a makeover. I hope it only looks like half-crazy shit now. I am mystified by people who have fancy blogs. And so jealous. Which happens to be the name of the greatest Tegan & Sara album.

Revamping my blog, I have been perusing my old articles, including a feature I did for LA Weekly when So Jealous came out. God, what a great album title.

If you haven't heard it, you should prolly go to here or here.

I truly love that album, and if you haven’t ever listened to it, I would gently urge you to go get it right now. It’s one of those rare albums (at least in this era) that has no pink slime. No filler. No extra junk that’s not quite up to snuff.

I haven’t loved their subsequent records, just as I didn’t love their records before So Jealous. Does that make me a fake Tegan & Sara fan? Oh, maybe. So what?

I am a true-blue, non-fake fan of So Jealous, an album that stands alone in their discography as a future-girlistic version of late-‘70s/early ‘80s power pop. It involves the commitment to hooks that was taken as a sacred blood oath by all the best power pop groups (the Knack, the Cars, the Beat, Nick Lowe/Rockpile, the Toms, Cheap Trick . . .). And not even all of those groups had a lot of albums that were all-beef, no-filler.

It is not a coincidence that ex-Weezer guy Matt Sharp was involved with it. Matt Sharp gives me the willies, but if you were to look at Weezer as a power pop group (which is as accurate a description as any), the Blue Album would be their primary contribution to the rock & roll hall of nonstop hook fiestas. And the Blue Album is probably the most Matt Sharpy Weezer album, if my instincts serve.

But it’s not about the guy, here. It’s about the girls. I love those girls.

I love how they have the balls to say, “There’s nothing to live for when I’m sleeping alone.” You’re not supposed to say that, you know. Especially as a girl. Girls are supposed to be independent and “kickass” at all times, dependent on no one.

I mean, that’s the goal and the feminist and Spice-Girl ideal. The reality is much messier. Oh, the heart. The Master. Damn you, Salazar!


I always felt that because my blog looked like hell, it would be incumbent upon me to make the writing good.  I hope that my blog still looks bad enough that it is incumbent upon me to make the writing good.

Love ’n’ stuff,

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Chickenjoy 4-Ever!

 Ode to Jolibee

Jollibee is a place of triumph and passion.

Jollibee is a place of bright color and improbable combinations.

Jollibee is a place of hot dogs and rice.

Jollibee is a place of romance and possibility.

Jollibee has been an important romantic spot for me for many years now, ever since they opened an outlet in the Eagle Rock Mall. It  has been a happy place to surrender experimentally to the unknown.

It makes me want to sing a tune about Jollibee, my baby, and me.

It's love, o can't you see,
O! Jolly, Jollibee,
This chicken mystery,
This hot dog reverie.

Yumburgers alive,
Chickenjoy high five.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Good Morning, America

So, apparently, this shit is still happening.

Yet another reason I'm glad I went to a girl-power school.

Recently, I was talking to my old teacher from Immaculate Heart High School, Mike Manion, who taught me history, international relations, and critical thinking. At a school of virtuoso teachers, I think we would all probably agree Mr. Manion was the all-around champ.

Mr. Manion

I told Mr. Manion, a couple weeks ago it dawned on me why Immaculate Heart was such a powerful force in my development. It comes down to this: For a brief (and shining!) moment, I was able to feel what it would be like to be judged solely by the content of my character. (And my brain. The brain was key.) At least in the classroom, I was able to feel what it's like to not be treated as a "minority," or "like a girl." I got to feel out my own nature in safety.

A person doesn't get that chance very often. And I don't mean we weren't taught to celebrate being women; we were. But we weren't treated as a minority.

Coincidentally, yesterday I was at LACMA (LA County Museum of Art) for a heart-throbbing exhibit, "California Design, 1930-1965: Living in a Modern Way." I was thrilled to find stuff in the gift shop by Corita Kent, the famed graphic artist and head of the art department at Immaculate Heart College, whose work set the visual tone for our school. I love Corita so.


PS: For more info on my crazy/extraordinary high school experience, you can check out "My Life with the Renegade Nuns" from L.A. Weekly, and an essay by a fellow panda here. Yes; our mascot was the panda. Yes, it was awesome.

My all-around favorite Corita piece. That's a Lennon-McCartney lyric, taken out of context, from "Things We Said Today." I love how she also takes the Look magazine logo out of context. I wish I could have met her.

Friday, March 23, 2012

KISS Junior

Hey, Frogger:

I am so happy to have a blog again, I can't tell you. You really can't imagine.

So, my fella said a joke tonight.

"What did Malcolm X tell his assistant when he sent him to the store to buy the ingredients for three-bean salad?"


(I know you can.)

(Just think for one second.)

Answer: "Buy any beans necessary!"

(No disrespect. Really.)


I have various newses, but for the moment, this will have to suffice.

Forthwith, a personal essay I have loved for many years now. It's by Eric Nuzum, who is a great writer and a radio person. This essay makes me so happy, I had to share it with you, for I can hardly think of a better band name EVER than KISS Junior.

The exciting thing is that Eric has a new book coming out which will include this piece. I am really looking forward to it, like crazy.

Please enjoy KISS Junior.

You drive us wild, we'll drive you crazy.

By Eric Nuzum



Saturday, March 10, 2012

Laundry Saturday

Hi, Chicken Lovers:

I haven't written on this blog in oh so long. I think the last time I wrote on this blog, we had never had an African American president, and everyone knew we never would have one—at least in our lifetimes. (And we'd certainly never have a president—of any color—who hung with pirates.)

Last time I wrote on this blog, Brian Wilson and Mike Love were never going to tour together again.

Last time I wrote on this blog, the idea of a new kind of diet Coco-Cola seemed absurd.

Last time I wrote on this blog, houses were expensive.