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Favorites 2.2.16

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Cleaning the garage. It once held a mini ramp, and more recently, a very persistent rodent. Right now, though, my garage is strictly a purgatory of stuff. My stuff. Old roommates’ stuff. Ex boyfriends’ stuff. Former homeowners’ stuff. Maybe even your stuff? It’s possible. The important thing is that I’ve been cleaning and organizing it, and in addition to fulfilling my pathological need for order, I’ve unearthed a treasure trove: 2 skil saws, 3 orbital sanders, bike fenders, a staple gun, spray paint in a myriad of colors, and so much more. It’s like Christmas morning!

Taco potluck. See, I buy the tortillas and tequila, you bring over your favorite taco fillings. What could be easier, cheaper, more delicious, tipsier?

Theo Peppermint Stick Dark Chocolate. There’re way too many houses still draped in Christmas lights around here. It’s messing with my feng shui. But! This limited edition left over from the holidays is fine by me. The crushed-velvet richness of dark-as-night chocolate; the crunch and coolness of peppermint candy. As I’ve stated elsewhere, it’s so super worth it to buy the really good chocolate (esp. if you’re down for getting all feel-good-organic-fair-tradey) (which I am).

Pretending it’s spring. The other day, I felt a barely warm breeze and got all excited thinking about spring. This caused me to hurry to the nursery and browse seeds for my future veggie garden, all the while caught up in a kind of frenzy dreaming about the fresh salsas and salads I’d make when the warm months returned. If this is crazy, I don’t wanna be sane.

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Jeff & The Brotherhood

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Jeff And The Brotherhood laced up a set at the Doug Fir on Friday night. Do you y’all know them? Two lads from Nashville who happen to be brothers who also happen to play these grand stoney riffs for your listening pleasure. Of course, they used to sound a little more punk-y, like Weezer meets The Ramones. Now they’re more sludgey, more unlaced. Anyway, they’re just dudes. In jeans and tee shirts. One playing the drums, the other a guitar. It’s almost too simple to work, and yet it does. More than works. It’s fucking rock and roll!

Best Laid Plans

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Fresh starts are the best thing on earth. Burn it all down. Reemerge all phoenix like. You need an occasion for them, though. New Years? That shit’s as arbitrary as the next.

I like to start a new psychic cycle when I set up a fresh skateboard. It doesn’t happen that often—I’m not out there breaking boards, ya know. But when it does, I look at that old deck and can summon all the crap that went down over the course of me riding it. Trips I went on. People I fell for. Laughs I had. Ways I got my ass handed to me. Life’s a mystery. We don’t know what’s going on here. All we can do is grip a new board and throw another penny in the well.

4 Records I Bought This Week

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I closed my eyes, blinked, and suddenly I’d gone a whole year without once procuring new music. No, not once had I gotten all jazzed on a new band—not once had a new song hooked like jumper cables to my soul.

Instead, I’d let my iPod piddle out the same jams over and over—and if we’re being honest, I’d skipped through half. Cuz they were just tired. Mostly, I’d let Pandora play whatever it wanted. Too lazy—let the algorithm decide. Digest it all as background music. No excitement. So sad.

What got me thinking on this was a book I’ve been reading. It’s called Waging Heavy Peace. Neil Young—of Buffalo Springfield fame; of Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young fame; of plain-old Neil Young fame—wrote it. And he talks a lot about this matter.

“It’s like a cool pastime or a toy, not like a message to the soul,” sez Neil about how people consume music today.

His take? MP3 quality sucks—you may as well be listening to music under water. There’s no fucking magic! Now, I’m not sure if shit-quality is what spawned my own auditory stagnation—but Neil, baby, I want that magic back!

These new-to-me records, maybe they’ll get me there …

4 new

-Angel Olsen, Burn Your Fire For No Witness

-Bob Dylan and The Band, The Basement Tapes Complete, Bootleg Series Vol. 11

-Bob Mould, Beauty & Ruin

-Rodriguez, Searching For Sugar Man

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Life and Death

I’m not good at funerals. Who is? Went to one recently for someone I did not know personally and remembered how hard it is to watch people you love hurtin on the inside and not be able to do nothing about it. For the next few days, I simmered on the subject of how important our people are to us—how they ARE us, to a certain extent, and I felt strangely lucky to have all my peeps gathered around me right now, whether in essence or in reality, keeping me honest and whole and stuff.

Reminds me of the below pic of someone’s public art I came across one day on the Internets. Can’t remember who shot it or who the artist is or really anything about it, but it’s nice, right?

Summer Starts Now?

An entire saga of summer skate camp just ended (yay!), and without further ado, we packed up the car to go camping out on the Oregon Coast. To make summer and stuff. But I don’t know. All the camp sites in every campground in a 50 mile radius were full. Grid lock traffic. Coffee shops packed with the obese and children wearing rollerblades. So Much Ice Cream being consumed. It was a horror show. So we cooled out at the beach for a bit and then split for Portland. The coast on a sunny summer weekend—I don’t even want it. Let the kooks have it.

That’s a sandy doggy.

Later that night, the Bracewells had a lil backyard ramp jam and called it the Salmon Jam. Loads of bros came through, old friends, new friends, people I didn’t know. So much fun. Not another thing I’d rather be doing on a summer night.

Burn Out

“I sit by the fire of my life in Paris and wonder when this life here will start to burn brightly. So far it looks like those electric logs in artificial fireplaces burning with moderate glow and without sparkle or warmth.”—from The Dairy of Anais Ninn.

Do you ever feel like that? I do.

Outstagram

They released Instagram for Androids last week, and just like that, I’m on it—after months of pining. I’ll be honest, though, it hasn’t really enhanced the quality of my life like I thought it might, and I don’t know, there’s something inauthentic about seeing the world and your experiences in terms of Instagram posts. Then again, want to follow me?