Saturday, December 27, 2008

Yule Never Understand It

So I'm all nestled in the in-law's guest room the night of Christmas Eve, all full of turkey and Christmas cheer. I'm flipping channels on the TV, trying to find something that will help me fall asleep.

Hey look! It's the Yule Log!

For those who don't know, a couple channels suspend their usual programing for a few hours around Christmas and instead show a close-up of a fireplace. I suppose with the right eggnog this can be strangely hypnotic.

I'm about to turn the channel when I notice they're using the audio from "It's A Wonderful Life."

That's kind of strange, I think. I guess they're trying to set a scene, like you're falling asleep in front of a fire while somebody's watching TV on Christmas. That's kind of coo- what the hell?

This version of the movie was taken from a live screening with some sort of mics on the audience, so every couple minutes you'd hear a roomfull of phantom people laughing.

So I keep getting hypnotized by this log and trying to follow along with the movie, which is pretty hard since every couple of minutes a roomfull of Christmas ghosts start laughing at me.

I wasn't the only one. A co-worker happened to catch it at the beginning and thought that the two burning logs were the voices of Clarence the angel and God.
Apparently, this year's grand experiment caused all sorts of controversy with dedicated yule log watchers, who I guess were used to Christmas carols or something as the audio.

Me, I'm itching to catch this psychedelic Christmas show again next year.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Guess Who Stopped By Work Last Week?

Everybody's Christmastime friend, The Gingerbread Man!

Aw, look! He's hanging out with that nice librarian lady! How sweet!

Aw, Gingerbread Man is making that developmentally disabled fellow happy!

How sweet, now he's hanging out with both of them. Hey, wait a minute, what's that guy about to do to your neck? Get out of there, Gingerbread Man! That dude looks like he's eaten quite a few of your friends and family in the past! This can't end well.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Ladies and Gentlemen of the Jury, Have You Reached a Verdict?

Yes we have, Your Honor.

Weighing all available facts, this jury has determined without a doubt that Book of Love's "Boy" is the greatest '80s New Wave song ever. Those church bell sounding synthesizers, drum machine, snaky keyboards and those breathy 'uh-huh' vocals, all in the service of a sexually ambiguous song (is the singer upset that she can't go to where the boys are? She does seem happy after accepting the fact that she wasn't born a boy and thus has to stay at home and play with her toys, whatever that might mean) never fail to get me smelling clove cigarettes and leather jackets.

Also, James Brown's "Let's Make Christmas Mean Something This Year" is quickly entering the top 5 Christmas songs of all time. And this is from a judge (wait, wasn't I the jury?) who has noted his distaste of modern Christmas songs in the official record.

Let it be noted, let it be so.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Fun at Work

Librarian: "So when are you starting your tough guy bookclub?"
Me: "Well, I w - wait, what?"
L: "You know, like you said in that last staff meeting."
M: "See, this is why we need somebody taking notes at those things. I said if it looked like we weren't on track to hit our bookclub goals by the middle of the year, I'd throw together a guy's bookclub or something."
L: "I don't know, I had a pretty vivid image of you in the middle of a bunch of guys in leather jackets and white T-shirts reading Charles Dickens."
M: "Heh, that's pretty funny. The first rule of the tough guy bookclub - you have to sit backwards in your chair."
L: "Switchblade combs must remain in the locked position."
M: "No doo-wop songs until the club is officialy over."
L: "Members can only yell out, 'Oooooh Ayyyyyy!' once during the meeting."
L: "Hey teach, why we gotta read about this Shakespeare stuff anyway?"
M: "Well, Big Eddie, lemme tell you a story. See, there's this cat who wants to take over his gang. He got the idea from these crazy witches, then his old lady keeps pushing him to off the leader."
L: "Hey, that's alright."
M: "Well, Big Eddie, I just taught you Macbeth by William Shakespeare."
L: "No way! Ay, teach, you're alright. Hey guys, let's give 'im a song. Bababab bopadopadop."
M: "You know what's really funny about all this? The fact that when we think of tough guys, instead of thinking of skinheads or wrestlers or Green Berets or something, we immediately conjur up Sha Na Na."

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

AP History

For some reason tonight we had a revolutionary war soldier guy in the library. Some kids saw him and yelled out, "Hey Napoleon! Look out for Hitler!"

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


Went down to Gainesville for Thanksgiving with the in-laws. I wasn't in the best of moods, as Christie and her mom convinced me that they were having a ham for Thanksgiving. I sort of suspected they were messing with me, but the more they stayed on message, the more worried I got.

Was I going to have to be a dick and not eat any ham? I like ham alright, but ham on Thanksgiving? Unacceptable. Was I going to have to call Homeland Security or Martha Stewart and drop a dime on my commie in-laws who were blatantly showing their hatred of America by serving ham on Thanksgiving?

Luckily, it was all a joke and we had a wonderful turkey. I don't especially see what's so funny about joking about Thanksgiving, but I'll let it slide. This time.

My mood improved a bit after I got a tour of my friends Pat and Cindy's swank new pad. To make things sweeter, Pat gave me a couple CDs - one of which I'm listening to right now called "The Get It: Raw Funk of '67 - '69."

I don't think any genre compilations have burned me more frequently than funk. At least with reggae or country or rockabilly or garage comps, you'll find a couple keeper tracks buried alongside the doo-doo, but I don't know how many damn funk comps I've bought that promised "raw, greasy funk" with a picture of some cool looking dudes in matching suits, only to hear a bunch of ballads or half-assed disco.

But man, Pat must have been out of his mind to let this one go. Everything is tight, raw and funky, and I haven't skipped over a track yet. You know when the songs include titles like "Shake a Poo Poo" or "Finger Lickin' Chicken" you're getting something good. A good 3/4 of the songs start with some guy saying something like, "This here's a new dance called the ___" and feature lots of shouts and grunts.
This is gonna get played weekly once cookout season starts up again.

Pat also included this cool little thing:

Check it out, it's a mummy choking two explorers who were foolish enough to disturb his slumber. Apparently Michaels, a store I get dizzy in just crossing the threshold has a ton of stuff like this if you want to build your own spooky train set or Halloween town or whatever.

So for these treats, and the fact that we actually had turkey like normal people, I am eternally thankful.