I used to be on top of this kind of news.

I’m in the process of converting my music CDs into mp3’s* (thus probably violating several federal laws) largely because I’m tired of packing my briefcase full of CDs.

Anyway, while ripping Wall of Voodoo‘s Call of the West, I got curious and searched Google for information about WoV’s guitarist, Marc Moreland (I wanted to see what he’s done since his work on the Pretty and Twisted album). Sadly, I learned he died on March 13th, 2002.

Marc Moreland was one of those guitarists you could simply recognize by his distinctive sound.

*For my own personal use from CDs I own.

Dogbert’s take on the blogging phenomenon

(via the DNRC newsletter)

Dear Dogbert,

Lots of people write blogs, but I’ve never heard of anyone who actually reads them. What’s up with that?


Dear Skirt,

Blogs exist to fill the important market niche of writing that is so dull that your eyes will burrow out of the back of your head to escape. People do read blogs, usually by accident, sometimes on a dare, but those readers are later mistaken for Mafia victims with what appears to be two holes in the back of their heads. On closer inspection, you might find their eyeballs clinging to the drapes directly behind them. Unless the cat gets them first.



Visitor’s Guide to Driving in St. Louis

(stolen from stlbloggers.com)

  1. There are 75 “official neighborhoods” in the City of St. Louis. St. Louisans commonly give directions (especially for restaurants) to strangers based on these neighborhoods which aren’t marked on any maps that are handed out by the tourist board, the AAA or Mapquest.
  2. There are 54 school districts — on the Missouri side alone — each of which has their own school bus system and scheduled times to block traffic.
  3. There are 91 official municipalities in St. Louis County. Each Municipality has its own rules, regulations, and often their own police departments.
  4. More importantly, most have their own snow removal contracts, so it’s not uncommon to drive down a road in winter and have one block plowed, the next salted, the next piled with snow and the last partially cleared by residents wanting to get out of their driveways.
  5. Snow plowing is never a problem in the City of St. Louis. They plow nothing, and if the forecast calls for snow, they close everything. Except on “The Hill” (refer to #1 above) where each homeowner goes out to the street and shovels out one car-sized rectangle and then stands watch over it.
  6. Any car parked longer than 4 hours in the city is considered a parts store.
  7. The City of Ballwin actually proposed that drivers use connecting strip mall parking lots to get from place to place rather than drive on Manchester Road to cut the traffic on Manchester.
  8. Laclede Station Road mysteriously changes names as you cross intersections. As do McCausland, Lindbergh, Watson, Reavis Barracks, Fee Fee, McKnight, Airport Road, Midland, Olive and Clarkson. Gravois Road can only be pronounced by a native. Ditto for Spoede and Chouteau.
  9. A St. Louisan from South County has never been to North County and vice versa. West County has everything delivered.
  10. No native St. Louisan knows that Lindbergh runs from South County to North County! And, if you tell them, they will not believe you.
  11. Lindbergh belongs to every neighborhood except Kirkwood, who had the nerve to creatively change the name to “Kirkwood Road”.
  12. There are 2 interchanges to exit from Highway 40 onto Clayton Road and 2 for Big Bend. Stay alert, people!
  13. If you need directions to O’Fallon, make sure to specify Illinois or Missouri. This is also true for Troy, Maryville, St. Charles, Springfield Columbia….
  14. The Page Avenue extension and Airport expansion projects took over 20 years to get approved and St. Louisans lost track of how many political figures claimed them as their own ideas.
  15. St. Louisans were aghast when the federal government required them to redo the highway signs to indicate that the federal highways went to cities in other states instead of local municipalities.
  16. Drivers are starting to cut their OWN plates rather than go through the Missouri Department of Motor Vehicles to get new tags. You can also purchase tags from dealers behind QuiK Shops in the city. They are cheaper, the clerks are nicer, and the service is faster.
  17. Lambert Field and St. Louis International Airport really are the same place. The East Terminal, however, is a different place.
  18. Highway 270 is our daily version of the NASCAR circuit. (Same goes for Highway 70.) You can go all four directions on Highway 270: North and South in West County, East and West in South County, and East and West in North County. Confused? So are the St. Louis drivers.
  19. The outer belt is Highway 270 which turns into Highway 255 in South County. The inner belt is Highway 170. Highway 370 is an outer-outer belt. Highway 40 is the same as Interstate 64 (but only through the middle part of St. Louis).
  20. The morning rush hour is from 6:00 to 10:00 AM. The evening rush hour is from 3:00 to 7:00 PM. Friday’s rush hour starts Thursday morning. Never ever try to cross a bridge in St. Louis during rush hour unless you have a sack lunch and a port-a-potty in the car.
  21. YIELD signs are for decoration only. No native St. Louisan will ever grasp the concept.
  22. If someone actually has their turn signal on, it is probably a factory defect, or has been on for the last 17 miles.
  23. Construction on Highways 40, 64, 70, 255, 270, 44, 55 and 170 is a way of life, and a permanent form of entertainment.
  24. All old ladies with blue hair in Cadillac’s (driving on Olive west of 270) have the right of way.
  25. If it snows or rains? Stay home!!

Music that doesn’t suck

Here’s a small and not very representative list (basically what I had on hand when I wrote this) of some of the music I listen to.

Bozzio Levin Stevens:
- Black Light Syndrome

Kate Bush:
- The Whole Story
- The Red Shoes

The Corrs:
- VH1 Presents the Corrs Live in Dublin
- Talk On Corners [Special Edition]

The Cranberries:
- Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can’t We?

The Doors:
- The Doors

Dream Theater:
- Awake
- Falling Into Infinity
- Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence

Fountains of Wayne:
- Utopia Parkway

Philip Glass:
- Itaipu; The Canyon

Pretty & Twisted:
- Pretty & Twisted

- Monster

Spinal Tap:
- Spinal Tap

Stan Ridgway:
- Black Diamond

Howard Shore:
- The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
- The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
- The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King

Wall of Voodoo:
- Call of the West

- 90125
- Symphonic Music of Yes
- Time & A Word

Frank Zappa:
- Apostrophe
- Baby Snakes
- You Are What You Is
- Broadway the Hard Way
- Joe’s Garage Acts 1-3
- Zoot Allures

Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention:
- Grand Wazoo

- Gangs of New York

Giuliani Blames the Troops

The president was cautious the president was prudent the president did what a commander in chief should do. No matter how you try to blame it on the president the actual responsibility for it really would be for the troops that were there. Did they search carefully enough? Didn’t they search carefully enough?
— Rudolph Giuliani (October 28, 2004)

Amazing. Right wing pundits are criticizing Kerry for blaming the troops (when, in fact he’s blaming the Bush administration). But it’s OK for Giuliani to actually blame the troops for the Bush administration’s failures.

Here’s Wesley Clark’s response:

For President Bush to send Rudolph Giuliani out on television to say that the “actual responsibility” for the failure to secure explosives lies with the troops is insulting and cowardly.

The President approved the mission and the priorities. Civilian leaders tell military leaders what to do. The military follows those orders and gets the job done. This was a failure of civilian leadership, first in not telling the troops to secure explosives and other dangerous materials, and second for not providing sufficient troops and sufficient equipment for troops to do the job.

President Bush sent our troops to war without sufficient body armor, without a sound plan and without sufficient forces to accomplish the mission. Our troops are performing a difficult mission with skill, bravery and determination. They deserve a commander in chief who supports them and understands that the buck stops in the Oval Office, not one who gets weak knees and shifts blame for his mistakes.
— Wesley Clark (October 28, 2004)