Saturday, September 29, 2007

Another open letter to the Texas Longhorns

I can't even talk about it right now. And to have it happen at home, of all places. You should all be ashamed.

Except you, Chiles. I think you might be the answer.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Darjeeling Limited

Next Friday the next installment from pretty much my favorite director of all time hits the screens. The way I see it, If “Bottle Rocket”, “Rushmore”, “The Royal Tenenbaums”, and “The Life Aquatic” are any indication, I think it’s a safe bet that I'll love it. Then again, Wes Anderson could make shadow puppets for an hour and a half and I’d think they were the best ones I’ve ever seen. And the art direction would no doubt be fantastic. And the way the camera moves would be about as close to perfect as you can get. And the type would be awesome. And the soundtrack would be among the best things you've ever heard.

And your good friends over at Fox Searchlight have posted Wes’s gem of a short, “Hotel Chevalier”, over at iTunes so check it out as it’s good and it’s free. Oh, and Natalie Portman takes her clothes off. So there’s that. I also understand it might run in the theater prior to the full film but if, like me, you can’t wait, go check it now.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

A rabbit responds to all the cute little "...like rabbits" comments you've been making. And he's not happy. Well, as unhappy as a rabbit can be.


Thanks for coming, everybody. Seriously, you know how hard it is to get a sitter for that many kids? Not easy. So the reason I called you, right.

Look, here's the deal. For years we put up with it.  Your jokes, your Visa ads, your analogies—we kind of had to.  You know, given the whole "lack of oral communication skills" thing we're burdened with, we pretty much had no choice but to bite our tongues and let it go. That and we like biting our tongues. We're rabbits, not geniuses. We bite other stuff too. I'll get to that.

But that doesn't mean your comments hurt any less.

And—just so you know, just to set the record straight, just so we're clear—we rabbits do way more than just, you know, "that."

I mean, first of all there's the nibbling.  That's gotta account for at least half of our day.  Carrots don't chew themselves, mister. Or lettuce. I mean, lettuce doesn't chew itself. Not that carrots don't chew lettuce. Which of course they wouldn't. Because they can't.

Wow, I am really nervous. I'm making no sense. Sorry, it's just that I don't do alot of public speaking and...wow, is it hot out here? I think my fur is wet. Jeezers!

Moving on.

Then there's the sniffing thing.  Easily a quarter of every day is thrown away with that useless activity.  Oh, we have absolutely no idea what exactly it is we're sniffing for but that doesn't stop us from doing it. It's kind of fun, actually. Try it.

No? No interest?

Suit yourself. So what is that, what are we up to now? I'm really bad at math. Three-quarters of a day? Is that right?

Let's see what else do we do?

Hopping, of course. There's hopping. Hopping takes up a good amount of 3-4 hours. I mean, it's how we get around and all. Look, our back feet are like freakishly long compared to these little, teeny paws. Look at the difference. You can't get no good stride going with that action.

So yeah. That's about it: the life of a rabbit. Thanks for letting me clear that up.

Well, there's that and...you know, that other thing. There is that. We do alot of that. That is kind of true now that I think about it.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The Reverend Al Sharpton visits the 21 Club in Midtown Manhattan

(Following Bill O’Reilley’s comments regarding his visit to Sylvia’s in Harlem and his apparent shock and awe at black people who didn’t fit his stereotype, your good friends at Fascination Streak follow the Reverend Al Sharpton as he visits the 21 Club. Let’s listen in to what he has to say.)

“Damn! This place ain’t nothin’ like Harlem! Everyone in here is white. There’s not even one person in here screamin’ “motherfucker, can I get some iced tea” because every motherfucker in this joint has already got a tall-ass glass of it. With lemon! They’re all ordering and having fun and being civilized. I can’t get over the fact that even though this place is run by whites and with a primarily white patronship, it’s pretty much like being, well, like being anywhere in America besides Harlem.

You know, I think white Americans are finally figuring it out: “look, if I’m born the right color and don’t screw up too bad not only can I make it, I can pretty much coast. Maybe I can even use my journalistic credentials at the esteemed "Inside Edition" and "Current Affair" to springboard to a job at Faux News where I can spout hate speech all day culminating in 2007 with my first trip north of 125th Street where I can finally realize ‘hey, wait a second, black people are people just like the rest of us.’”


What a bonehead that O’Reilly guy is. Is there not one frikkin' taxi on Sixth Avenue that could, I don't know, "accidentally" hop the curb while he's on it? Too much to ask?

Folks, this is LA. LA, these are my folks.

My parents came to visit me this weekend and we had a stellar time. We were talking yesterday about one of the joys of living in a city like Los Angeles is that it’s not a matter of “what are we gonna do” but “what aren’t we going to do?”

And thankfully the first legit rain since I’ve lived here wrapped up Saturday morning as they hit the ground. Otherwise, god knows what we would have done.

So we took a quick tour of my office and my house and then hit the beach for a bit before heading up to the Getty Museum. Which was great considering I had not been.

Now, the Getty is really unlike any other museum I’ve been to and the reason I say that is this: you’re constantly torn between looking at priceless works of art inside or looking at a frikkin’ amazing view outside. It’s a conundrum to be sure.

But quite possibly the coolest thing was that through the use of louvers in the ceilings of the top floors (where all the paintings are held) you can actually look at paintings in the same light as the artists did: sunlight. Beautiful, golden, southern California sunshine, no less. I’d never thought about it but I suppose most works of art I’ve ever seen has been under electric lighting that obviously didn’t exist when most of the works were painted. It was a revelation of sorts to see what the artist saw.

And of course I took some pictures.









Then Sunday, after a morning spent milling about the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market, we went to the Griffith Park Observatory. Yes, the same one James Dean’s character ends up at during “Rebel without a Cause.” Aside from housing the most viewed telescope in the worrld, that seems to be its main claim to fame. And having just come out of a four-year remodel, it was pretty damn impressive. So I took some more pics. And check out the science buff in this first one, all runnin' and stuff like "I love astronomy!"







And anyone else think this looks nothing like James Dean?

Friday, September 21, 2007

If you want something, don't ask for nothing

LA traffic tried to conspire to keep us down, but by car, by taxi, by foot and by the grace of god, we made it to the Hollywood Bowl last night for the big LCD Soundsystem/Arcade Fire show. And kids, I ain’t gonna lie to you, it was really nothing short of amazing. Coulda been the Bowl, coulda been the company, coulda been a beautiful fall evening under the stars and a couple bottles of Newcastle. But whatever it was, it was way better than the show I went to at the Greek in May.

Then again, we were pimpin’ it in the garden boxes down front. So there’s that.

As I mentioned, traffic went all midtown Atlanta on us yesterday evening and resulted in us missing the first few LCD songs. But I did manage to fire off one picture before deciding I didn’t feel like taking pictures and would just enjoy the show. Of the couple I took, this one came out the most messed up but somehow oddly interesting, so here it is. James Murphy and Co. going at it:

I should prolly note here that the Soundsystem flat-out rocked. Too bad we missed any of it as they clearly came to throw down. James looked like he just rolled out of bed, the dj chick rocked pants, and their drummer may be the hardest working man in rock. It was awesome. They closed out the set with “New York I love you (but you’re bringing me down)” which I thought was an interesting choice (kind of a slow one) but given our late arrival and the fact that I’d never been so thirsty in my life, we decided to get a jump on buying beers. But it was still killer.

And as we werre making our way back in after getting beers, we saw Rod Stewart scurrying into the good seats. Rod!

Then the Arcade Fire hit the stage. And proceeded to take the roof off the place. I know, I know. Not that there even was a roof, but go with me on this. Had there been one, it would be gone. Had there been walls, they’d be gone. I think there might have been a forest fire danger. I’m just sayin’.

Long story made way shorter, the scary thing is they’ve gotten better. Granted they’ve been on the road with these songs for going on a year now but they trotted out a couple of things I’d never seen before. The most impressive thing was at the end of pretty much my favorite song of theirs, “Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)”, as the “ooo-ooo-oo-ooo-oooo’s” were fading out, they brought down the music to just some feedback and random noise while they all switched instruments again and then once everyone was all set they came right back up into the “ooo-ooo-oo-ooo-oooo’s” full force again before flowing straight into “Neighborhood #3 (Power Out).” Brilliant. Absolutely brilliant.

I suppose that’s not that novel of a trick but it worked. And worked well. Kind of like how Widespread used to throw “Diner” in the middle of “Driving Song” and after like 8 minutes of “Diner” they sneakily shimmy right back into “Driving Song” and no matter how many times they did it, it was always like finding a wallet you lost only now it’s got hunsky in it. God, I love that.

In other notes about the show last night, “My body is a cage” was flooring. “(Antichrist Television Blues)" was genius—as was a certain someone’s call that they were going to play it next. “Windowsill” was straight-up outstanding with brilliant horns and strings. “Haiti” has only gotten better over time and Regine’s only getting cooler by me. And “Wake Up” was as crazy good as it was the first time I ever heard it. That’s a goddamn great song.

What a show, what a night. I enjoyed myself silly.

Here's what they played.

1. Black Mirror
2. Keep The Car Running
3. Neighborhood #2 (Laika)
4. No Cars Go
5. Haïti
6. Intervention (dedicated to “Governor Bush”)
7. (Antichrist Television Blues)
8. My Body Is A Cage
9. Windowsill
10. Ocean Of Noise
11. Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)
12. Neighborhood #3 (Power Out)
13. Rebellion (Lies)

Encore:

14. The Well And The Lighthouse
15. Wake Up

And for another little taste of how devastatingly good these guys are, check out this video of them covering the Clash’s “Guns of Brixton.” Give it a second to get going in the second verse.

Guns of Brixton

You gotta be kidding me.

And happy autumn equinox everyone. Today, tomorrow, whenever. Is it the 21st or the 22nd? I don't know. But it's fall. that's exciting.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Prescription drug side effects that would make prescription drug ads way more awesome

• x-ray vision

• Horse-like speed

• Cat-like reflexes

• Endless wit

• Ambidexterity

• Ability to communicate with sea life via telepathic beams

• Ability to turn yourself into any of water's physical states. And any twin you may have can turn into any type of animal.

• Ability to do really hard word problems

• Increased vocabulary

• Night vision

• Ability to go ahead make all the phone calls you're always putting off

• A really great singing voice.

• Silky smooth hair with body and shine

• Restless legs. Legs so restless, in fact, that they allow you to kick 80+ yard field goals.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

I talk outloud like you're still around

I had heard something about Jason Schwartzman having a band or something but not until this weekend did I actually hear any of it. You know, actors’ side bands are usually a tad less than whelming. Easy to miss.

While not all of his “Nightiming” album is necessarily amazing, this one song’s been kinda stuck all up in my headspace for at least three days now. It’s called “West Coast.” Give it a couple spins and you’ll see what I mean.

The video is made up of edits of a Mark Gonzales skateboarding video where he went and skated around a German museum. Somehow it’s oddly compelling and really works well. Somehow. And he’s wearing a fencing get-up.

You’ll know you’re in the good part of the tune when he starts kicking it in slow-mo. And keep an eye out for the kick turn he throws right on cue.

Dope.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Rub it in, why don't ya?

Mom and Wilco's Jeff Tweedy from Saturday's ACL taping.

Good lord, right? Who's cooler than that?

So my folks saw the Arcade Fire on Friday night. Then they saw Wilco on Saturday afternoon. (I should probably note here it's not like they're big fans of either band but they see everyone that comes through ACL, regardless. So pictures like this are either taken as an extremely thoughtful gesture given my fan status with Wilco or as some sort of attempt to stick it to me that I'm not there! I'm assuming it's not the latter.). And there were others tapings over the weekend of course given the influx of bands into Austin for the big fest. I think the other big ones were Crowded House, Regina Spektor, Bloc Party and then Lucinda Williams tomorrow night.

What's next, LCD Soundsystem opening up for the Arcade Fire?

Oh wait, that's here this Thursday.

Touche, Mom and Dad. Touche.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Would you look at that

Those of you who've spent any time at all in LA know parking can be a bit tricky. Especially in Santa Monica. And sometimes you have to squeeze into spots so snug you're fairly certain no car has ever set tires in them. If you were driving past this one you wouldn't even slow down to contemplate trying to squeeze into it. But then you're not Scott.

He did it. Somehow. Understandably, he was so proud he took a picture in front of it.

I mean look at the bumper of the car on the left—that's a headlight smasher! And this is a guy who's lived in NY for like 9 years and just recently started driving again. I don't know how he got in there.

Or if he'll ever get out of it.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

An open letter to the Texas Longhorns

Fellas,

Take a knee. Some of you probably recognize me from the bronze casts and numerous plaques around campus celebrating my time here in the 90's. And yes, most of it is true. Except that part about the Jungle party in '95. But enough about what I've done for The University. We need to talk about what you're not doing: not beating the pants off b-rate programs.

Wake up! Start playing some goddamn footbal! Be the team you're supposed to be! You know Vince would punch each and everyone of you in the face if we was here. You know that. Except you, Bailey. You were hitting field goals left, right and center. And on top of that you're a Trojan so you're good by me. Here, catch. That's the game ball. Congratulations, young man.

But the rest of you.

You beat Arkansas State. Barely.

You beat Central Florida. Barely.

What's next, a squeaker over Northwestern Arkansas Regional College? A walk-off 60 yard field goal to beat Southeastern Idaho Tech by 1? A Division II school? A trade school? A really athletic bible study group who sometimes tosses the old pigskin around after their Tuesday "New Testament Night: The Night for Those Who Think the Old Testament Was a Bit Harsh."

They're not even Old Testament! This has got to stop. And it stops right here.

Let's not see anymore of this, ok? Except you, Bailey. You're still cool.

That's all. I'll be at Texadelphia if ya'll need anything.

Friday, September 14, 2007

That's more barbecue and Shiners and icy cold margaritas for the rest of you

For like the fourth year in a row, I’m missing the big Austin City Limits festival back home. And the line-up this year is pretty sick.

And of course many of the bands are swingin’ by the campus to record actual ACL segments for TV so mom and dad are gonna be seeing the likes of Wilco and stuff in air conditioned comfort.

I’m not jealous though at all. Seriously. Not a bit.

Oh, and recently someone made me a couple of arguably the best mixes of music I’ve ever heard. They included this little diamond from a Danish chick named Trolle Siebenhaar. The song’s called “Sweet Dogs.” It's a winner.

Beautiful, right? There’re a lot more gems that I’ll have to leak out in the days to come. Right now, I’m off to do a little market research. Offsite.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

A letter from 50 Cent to Kanye West regarding his new album

Kanye,

Look, for all the hype, it appears your record is better than mine. Whoopity-do! Good for you. You do realize it’s my birthday, don’t you? I trust you do and I don’t think it’s personal by any means but let me also ask you this, how many times have you been shot? Have you ever been? Are you even from the ‘hood? You know, a lot of people don’t know this but I was actually shot nine times. Nine. I know, it’s a lot of shells to be hit with. Bad luck mostly. In fact, it’s sometimes hard for me to believe I could be that unlucky. But the funniest thing is that despite being shot nine times, I don’t walk with a limp. And yet you’ve never been shot but have the #1 album in the country. Hmm, weird.

Whatever. To each his own. But I mean, who’s laying down the beats on “Stronger?” Is that Daft Punk or Air? I didn’t know you were French. And did I hear Chris Martin in there? Oh, and did the Thompson Twins sit in on “I wonder.” I’m sorry, it’s just been a long week. But listen, honestly, congratulations again on taking the stop spot and if you want to talk, you know where you can find me.

Love,

50

PS – If you do come by, could pick up a bottle of champagne on the way? That would be terrific. Oh, and some Bacard if it’s not too much trouble.

Kanye West responds to 50 Cent about his new album

Dear 50,

Sorry about the album thing. And happy birthday, if it is in fact your birthday.

To answer your question, no, I have never been shot or shot at or even seen a gun for that matter. Look, I’m not even from the hood, I’m from Oak Lawn, IL. Oak Lawn. Not Bed-Stuy or Hollis, Queens or Compton or Watts or East Oakland or Atlanta, but Oak Lawn. There’s nothing “hard” about growing up there. I mean, how do you rap about houses getting toilet papered? Or missing pets? I even went to college for a bit, 50! Trust me, tempting as it is, no one wants to hear raps about how long Tuesday/Thursday classes are. I just wrote down some stuff I thought you might say and recorded it. It’s only the first week, let’s see how next week goes.

Regards,

Kanye

PS – See you in the club.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Just your typical NFL game. And mustaches.

Last Thursday, Scott and Craig and our good friends over at TripleDouble hosted a little NFL kickoff party over at their offices in Santa Monica. To say it was a good time would be an understatement. I think I even watched a little of the game.

But the funniest thing is they set up a full-on Olan Mills portrait studio in one of their offices along with a collection of football props and—because what’s a party without wigs—a collection of wigs. And of course stick-on mustaches.

Craig, Grant and I took a turn and got some decent magic (yours truly on the right kickin' it "Sabotage" style).

But then something seriously magical happened. And quite possibly the most interesting picture ever was taken. Behold.

Even the back stories for this one have backstories. Did Derrick on the left just have 11 touchdowns and three picks? Did Grant go 44-for-45 with 578 yards passing? Why is his helmet on backwards? How did JD get out of jail? Is he "on the lam" as they say? Where does Adrea so desperately wish she was other than in this picture? The answers to these questions, we may never know.

And yet I can't look away.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Spoon


Last night we went to see my favorite band, Spoon, at the Henry Fonda theatre up in Hollywood. Over the course of the show I had two big epiphanies.

The first:

Hip hop is a pretty good opener for a rock show. Dr. Octagon (who is a the Dan the Automator-produced moniker of the former Kool Keith, the famous New York MC) opened the show and I gotta say were pretty damn entertaining. I think it had more to do with the concert having something to do with Wired’s NextFest which is in town but I still thought it was a creative pairing. And it worked. Kinda like the upcoming LCD Soundsystem/Arcade Fire show that should rock much pants.

And the second:

Spoon are simply a goddamn great Texas band. A great band in general, but another in a long line of great Texas bands going way back to Buddy Holly and the Crickets. Like halfway though the show, after watching Britt wrestle with his guitar in skinny light-gray pants and a black shirt, it hit me that I suddenly felt I could draw a straight line from Spoon last night all the way back to Buddy Holly. It was all connected. I know it seems a stretch.

But I also remember thinking if Buddy was alive today he might very well be making music as jumpy and jerky and grooved and simplistic as Spoon’s. And he’d probably look a lot like Britt if he had blonde hair. Well, aside from the glasses. But look at them both jab with the guitar.



All these photos courtesy of the folks at Laist.com, btw.

As far as the concert itself, it was pretty dope. They played in front of a massive silk-like scrim that when it was lit white and blue and red and yellow made the place look like some kind of Art Deco magic world where they were simultaneously playing inside Tiffany’s and then in some Robber Baron’s ballroom and then the lobby of the Chrysler Building and then suddenly the grand foyer of Clark Gable’s house as he's inviting you in for a highball. It was very Hollywood.


They opened with the stellar “My Japanese Cigarette Case” and they even brought out the horns for “Cherry Bomb” and “Jonathan Fisk” and a seriously funked-up version of “Stay Don’t Go” replacing the looped vocals of the record version with heavy guitar and, of course, the horns. Brilliant. I’m fighting the temptation to go back tonight and tomorrow night.

The full setlist, if you're interested:

Japanese Cig Case
Don't You Evah
Cherry Bomb
Stay Don't Go
The Beast and Dragon, Adored
Rhythm and Soul
The Ghost of You Lingers
Don't Make Me a Target
Vittorio E.
They Never Got You
Monsieur Valentine
I Summon You
Fitted Shirt
I Turn My Camera On
Quincy Punk Episode
The Underdog
Jonathan Fisk
Black Like Me

Eddie's Raga
My Mathematical Mind

Monday, September 10, 2007

One last time

By special request, I’ve been asked to give my take on our good friend Bit Bit’s performance at the VMA’s last night. I didn’t watch them but with the magic of the internet I was able to catch the train wreck on mtv.com.

Sweet Jesus.

I can’t believe MTV didn’t bump her. Opening slot? I’d have been all like “yeah, Bit Bit, it’s not happening, hun. We’re gonna need to go ahead and get someone with….how should I put this….someone who still cares to be the one to open the show. Oh, and maybe someone who didn’t clearly just get off the couch an hour ago to come mosey around the stage and not be….how should I put this….entertaining.”

Folks, it looks like everything I said back in 2000 has come to pass. Well, except she’s not living in a trailer in rural Louisiana. Yet.

Give her time.

But I remember saying back then I just knew she would end up a crushed, lipstick-stained ciggy butt along the side of the road that is pop music. She just doesn’t have that Bowie-like quality to reinvent herself. Never did. There’s only so many times you can trot out in a “nasty school girl” uniform or variations of it and make it look hot.

She's like a train wreck.

Only like a train wreck that takes place in the switchyard and so there's lots of trains and they're all blowin' up and stuff and so you're all like "oh my god, which one do I watch? The car-wrecker? The random-guy bedder? The poor mother? The head-shaver? The rehab-goer? The washed-up performer."

Out of shape, knocked up like ten times by all manner of less-than-quality dudes, probably on and off pills and booze, and draggin’ her ass around a stage while only half of that ass manages to bother with lip-synching. To cap it all off, of course it took place in Vegas.

Night-night, Bit-Bit. You had a good run.

On the bright side, there’s still lots of cigs to be smoked, cars to be wrecked, kids to be made and later endangered in front seats and on hotel balconies, and prolly loads of buckets of fried chicken for mama to eat while she watches her stories.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

America's Mediterranean

They say that the southern California coastline is America's Mediterranean. And I gotta say after this weekend, I believe it.

Friday we had our big work summer party up in Malibu. It was on a low bluff, west of the PCH overlooking Paradise Cove. It quickly got out of hand for a lot of people (8:30 AM "flip-cup" will do that) but most of us just enjoyed swimming and laying around drinking beer in the sun. And watching people take spills as they came down what we took to calling "the hill of spill." It was pretty funny, mostly.

Here's a random photo from the beach.


And then yesterday afternoon I was fortunate enough to be invited to honestly one of the coolest—at the very least, most beautiful—weddings I've ever been to. It was outdoors up on a super-duper high bluff overlooking the Pacific at some Erik Lloyd Wright designed "house". It was really like an open-air, house-like space. The place was nuts. These are the best pictures I could find online.


And you're up there like 1000 feet up the ridge (east of the PCH this time) and from that point you can see everyting—southeast to downtown and Hollywood, south over Santa Monica and Venice down to Palos Verdes, west out to Catalina Island, and north up the coast as far as it goes. And the ocean is a remarkably deep blue color. Check it out:

And you're drinking white wine. And champagne. And the sun is setting. And then the sun goes down. And the trees are filled with Christmas lights and those luminscent paper ball-things. And all the rocks were lit up by lights. And there is dancing.

And you fully expect everyone to be speaking French or Italian.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Plums

While at the little deli down the street at lunch I saw a little sign in the window with the following poem on it. It was simply advertising plums for $.50 a piece. I'd only seen this poem once before in a homemade Arcade Fire video but always loved it. There's an innocence about it and yet something perhaps darker beneath the surface, perhaps even a theft of something larger and far more important than merely plums. Enjoy.

This Is Just To Say
by William Carlos Williams

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
saving
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold


I bought two. Just to be safe.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

The Guru

There’s a fascinating article on Rick Rubin, who in my opinion is the best producer in the history of music, in yesterday’s NY Times.


Rick Rubin

He’s now taken over the reigns at Columbia Records with the sole purpose of saving the label. A tall order but if anyone’s gonna do it, it’s him. He thinks subscription service is where it’ll go. I don’t know about that.

He basically told Columbia he’s never going to have an office or a phone line or wear a suit. He told them they needed to move out of both the NY and LA offices because those were the old offices. He demanded they do away with plastic jewel cases in lieu of a greener option. And his operation will continue to run out of his Hollywood Hills mansion.

But the most interesting thing he said is that he’s trying to help them to understand they’re selling art, not image or hype or whatever. Art. Good music. And songs. Most importantly songs. Songs that are welcomed by ears. More than that, albums of those songs that are welcomed by ears. Not one offs.

From the early days of Def Jam in his NYU dorm room where he made LL Cool J and the Beasties to his brilliant Chili Peppers work to his Johnny Cash work to his work now with Weezer and Neil Diamond, the guy simply helps good musicians make great music. Timeless music, really. He just knows what he likes and merely steers artists toward that.

And then there’s this, his philosophy on producing music:

“I've always liked doing the stuff that I like. I have no training, no technical skill — it's only this ability to listen and try to coach the artist to be the best they can from the perspective of a fan.”

I like to think when it comes to advertising, that’s my approach too. I’m a fan. I watch tv and the internet, listen to the radio, read magazines, etc., and I buy stuff. Therefore I feel completely qualified to make this stuff. Obligated, really. Oh yeah, and I’m a professional writer. Convenient, right?

So when I sit down to work a little magic for a product or service I just think, “what would I want to see?” In fact, I used to have a sign in my office that said, “make something you’d wanna see.” And that’s pretty much my guiding principle and one I think this business could use a lot more of. And it usually works since I don’t work on old people stuff or feminine hygiene products. Thank god.

The way we talk now

Sometime during the course of a wild and crazy holiday weekend, the following words were coined:

"Manshake" – The handshake that then turns into a hug, usually between friends who’ve not seen each other in a while.

"Haterade" – What haters drink as they hate on people.

"Sext Message" - Just good, old-fashioned naughtiness via text message.

"Playa-Hata" - Hatin' on Burning Man. A popular pastime this past week.

At least I'd never heard them before. Listen for them as they sweep the country.