– Samhain 1991
In this dry land
crickets fear to chirp
for waste of moisture.
Rattlers bleach their bones,
listless in the summer scald.
I don't want to say too much
for fear of being misconstrued
for fear of being understood all too clearly
so here's your warning – Continue reading →
What’s the longest an NFL GM has lasted without winning a playoff game, anyway?
In case you missed it, the Green Bay Packers executed a miracle yesterday to get golf season started for the #1 seeded Dallas Cowboys.
In the 1995-6 season Troy Aikman led America’s Team® to a 27-17 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XXX. In the 21 seasons since that glorious day in Tempe, the Cowboys have: Continue reading →
You have the right to speak. You have no right not to be disagreed with.
Let’s start with a brief quiz.
Bob says X. Fred says no, X is wrong. Has Fred:
a) infringed Bob’s free speech rights, or
b) engaged in free speech the way the Framers intended?
Answer below, in case you don’t understand how freedom works.
This isn’t a big deal, really, but I saw something this morning that reminded me just how little Americans understand liberty. So I thought I’d offer a brief refresher for those who slept through Civics class. Continue reading →
The only thing worse than the willfully ignorant is the legion of apologists enabling them.
Since the election – before, really – we’ve heard a lot of talk about how all those urban liberal elites need to stop being so arrogant and start listening to very real concerns of real Americans in rural flyover values America.
We have more recently begun to see some informed pushback against this silliness self-serving rhetorical engineering masquerading as good-faith socio-political analysis. Now we’ve hit the daily double, though.
Dotsun Moon’s new singer, Maria Sebastian, is simply wonderful. Here’s proof.
In my top CDs of 2016 list last week, I propped Rich Flierl and Dotsun Moon, a band doing some serious soul-searching after losing its very talented lead singer. Rich dropped some new tunes on me the other day, and they suggest that in Maria Sebastian he has found an answer on the mic. Here’s what I mean – this is “My Apology,” and it’s heartbreakingly lovely.
I posted my two big resolutions for 2017 already: aim high and shoot straight and insist that support be mutual. But what will I do about all the standard resolutions? You know, the ones everybody makes and breaks every year?
Here are 15 top New Years resolutions. And what I plan to do about them.
Lose Weight and Get Fit
Well, I’m already doing that. In terms of strength I’m in the best shape of my life already. So this is more like I resolve to keep doing what I’ve been doing, only moreso.
2016 was an odd year for music. But at least Bowie left us a masterpiece on his way out the door.
David Bowie – BLACKSTAR
If I were doing my year-end ratings and reviews the way I used to I have no idea what I’d make of 2016. It started horribly, with David Bowie, one of the most influential geniuses in rock history, releasing Blackstar and then dying almost immediately. He was followed, in short order, by a lot of other people, including Prince, Paul Kantner, Glenn Frey, Sharon Jones and 2/3 of ELP.
So it seemed like every good new release was tempered, to a degree, by the fact that the Reaper was taking more than his share. Which meant, I think, that I never got into my usual new music groove.
Regardless, 2016 did present us with some wonderful sounds across a range of genres. Continue reading →
No, famous people won’t stop dying on January 1. But we lost too many bright lights this year and we hope that 2017 will be better. Here’s a list of noteworthy people who died in 2016.
For the past several months a lot of us have been saying we can’t wait for this damned year to be over.
2016 gave us the worst election season I can remember, and every ten minutes or so another beloved artist would die, it seemed. Any year that gives us Donald Trump and takes Muhammad Ali, David Bowie, Prince in return has done more damage than some decades.
No, people aren’t going to stop dying at the stroke of midnight tomorrow. Continue reading →
[Caveat: I’ll apologize in advance if this one sounds a little bitchy. That isn’t my intent, but I know people don’t always hear what I think I’m saying.]
Ever since we started this blog in 2007, and really for a good number of years before that via different media, I have done all I could to support the efforts of artists I found worthy, especially the seemingly numberless independent artists out there who are being all kinds of brilliant without much help from mainstream media or the industry institutions that dominate the areas in which they work. Music, visual arts, photography, literature, you name it – if you’re like me you run across a lot of fantastic creative work, and if you’re like me you want everyone else to appreciate it as much as you do. Continue reading →
When I was a little boy, my grandparents read me the Parable of the Talents (Matthew 25: 14-30). They had a particularly Southern Baptist working class interpretation of what it meant. If you had a gift, the Lord intended you to use it to make the world a better place. If you didn’t, it was a sin and the gift might be taken from you.
“You’re smart,” they said to me. “God means you to use your brain to help others.”
Whether because my ego liked the idea of being smart or because I was innately concerned about other people’s well being, the lesson never left me.
When I got older and started my career, I developed a reputation among those I worked with as a guy who was honest.Continue reading →
Analyzing Clinton’s loss: can we PLEASE let go of our compulsive binary either/or thinking?
Ever since the stunning outcome of the election several weeks ago we have been subjected to one analysis after another as to why Hillary Clinton lost to Donald Trump. Dozens and Dozens. Hell, make that hundreds and hundreds, probably. I’m seeing more of these stories in my Facebook feed these days than I am pictures of cute kittens. Telling us what happened and how it happened has become a whole new industry, it seems.
Some of these stories are insightful. Some tell us what we already know, although the authors often try and package their reasoning as something more original than it is. And some aren’t helpful at all. But it seems like the one thing each author has in common is a need to cast his or her reason as the reason. Continue reading →