Drooling on the Pillow

Friday, December 16, 2005

Friday Nite Juke Box 

A Sluggo Joint

As long as I'm flinging esoterica up on the Big Board of Bytes, here's three cuts from an album called Swing West: Bakersfield. That's volume one; volume two was called Swing West: Guitar Slingers. According to Mr. Internet, neither of these albums are available anywhere, so this is your big chance. I have no idea where I got them.

The album is a compilation of late fifties, early sixties country music of a certain kind that came to be known as The Bakersfield Sound. Why there's no cut by Buck Owens, I have no idea. There's two cuts by a young and terrific Merle Haggard and the rest of the artists have either completely or all but disappeared down the mid-twentieth century cultural memory hole.

According to the Rockabilly Hall of Fame, Tommy Collins was born in Oklahoma and had a short, very successful career when he met a DJ and some record producers in Bakersfield. You Better Not Do That was recorded in 1953 for Capitol Records. He stayed hot until 1957 when he quit show bidness to enter divinity school. He died in 2000.

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Next up is The Farmer Boy's, You're A Humdinger. They're credited with helping to invent the Bakersfield sound. You can actually get one of their albums (including this cut) from Amazon.

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Finally, Red Simpson, with The Highway Patrol, a tune I first heard done by Junior Brown. He and Dave Dudley popularized the sub-genre of truck drivin' country music in the mid-sixties and he still plays in Bakersfield clubs.

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That's all for tonight. Next Friday, tune in for the Buh-buh-buh-Brahms Slamma-Jamma.

William Proxmire, RIP 

I'm roused from my current blogging torpor and distracted from my oh-so-busy day to note the passing of Senator William Proxmire.

He was an odd ball's odd ball, but he was also the perfect model of a public servant. He was one of the very few senators in my lifetime who had a crystal-clear understanding of the relationship between the governors and the governed and who worked for who.

The picture on the left edits out the images of Senators Kennedy and Smathers, also receiving the LBJ treatment. All of them except Proxmire are looking right at Johnson with expressions ranging from patient to horror-stricken. It was taken on August 29, 1957, the day that Proxmire joined the Senate, having replaced Joe McCarthy, whose keister-burns still fouled the Senate steps. The thought bubble over Proxmire's head reads "Kee-rist, what a jack-ass."


I Even Have Three Achewood T-Shirts 

Alert readers are well aware that my plan for getting through the holidays and moving our office and the weather and don't forget the transit strike is to rip off my betters and throw an assortment of pretty, shiny objects up in lieu of actual posts.

The technical term for this is bitch-man posting.

Achewood, my absolute favorite strip, can be accessed daily at my ToonRoll over on the right.


Thursday, December 15, 2005

Thank God For Global Warming! 

Imagine how cold it would be without your neighbor's SUV. So let's keep the smudge pots burning and, with the help of a few oil well fires, we'll get through this winter just fine.

The image on the left, by the way is the Second Prize winner from the March-April 1992 round of the International Ray Tracing Competition by Christophe Bouffartigue. They put up a topic (in this case, of course, winter) and you submit an image or an animation rendered by any hardware and software you choose.

Here's the winner of the current animation competition under the topic "Sports".

You can pick up a submission form on-site.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Seatbelts Optional 

Sluggo is dedicated to providing the finest in cheap thrills. Take a lap at Watkins Glen with AC of Axis of Oversteer ("A collection of driving related video clips and high performance stuff"). He provides commentary here.

Blocked By France! 

I've discovered that an amazing number of otherwise intelligent people don't read the funnies every day.


Get Fuzzy is available daily at my ToonRoll over on the right.


Yeah, That's What You Said Last Year 

I hate that I said that I was going to the Christmas party on Monday and then didn't post at all yesterday. The low minded among you will pretend to see a connection there.

The truth is that I was accompanied by the lovely and talented Goddess and thus agreeably constricted in my revelry.

Yesterday was merely a hellish day at work.

Swear to God.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Robert Menendez Basta Ya! 

As a supporter of Robert Menendez, but one with open eyes that have been around the political block a few times, Tris McCall comments on the ascension of the 'Prince of Bergenline Avenue' to the U.S. Senate.

Carnival of the New Jersey Bloggers, #30 

Bruised, but unbowed, Mamacita emerges from the mosh pit with a quality Carnival. And I can't reference the Carnival without linking to TPB, Esq.'s wonderful parody of the sand-box tooing and froing that resulted from Mamacita's attempt to wrest editorial control of her Carnival from nobody.

Everybody's Gonna Wassail Tonight 

Office Christmas party tonight. Holiday, Winter Solstice, whatever. We used to have them at the Windows on the World at the World Trade, but ever since 9/11 we've just tricked up one floor like the Senior Prom at Hollywood High and partied on.

I avoided it for years and years until 2001 when I decided to go so the terrorists 'wouldn't win.' Score one for the West. Turns out it was a hell of a party, been back every year and the Goddess is going for the first time this year.

Hell of a party, yes, but it's not like the ones we had when I first came on board. Gone are the days when you could count on at least one new associate throwing up on a partner's shoes. When at least one secretary would express her long supressed desires with magnificent inappropriateness. When at least one quiet little guy from Duplicating would decide to finally express his frustrations and disappear in a puff of smoke.

Good times.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

The Ukulele 

Thus is the image of the ukulele. A comic prop employed by a dork who would saw off a limb to 'entertain' you.

However, my recent post on Tiny Tim revealed a small, but passionate sub-culture of ukulele aficionandos. Notably, Gregor, of What A Sad Old Goth declared himself ready to acquire one to keep the tradition alive.

I hope he read the Times business section today, which had an article about a new entrant in the uke makers' sector.

Before being laid off from his job as an ultrasonics engineer in 1998, Mr. [Dale] Webb had never played a ukulele, let alone built one. But his brother-in-law, Jim Beloff, is a longtime enthusiast, and he encouraged Mr. Webb to try his skilled hand at making a prototype worthy of true musicians, rather than tourists.

Mr. Webb, who lives in New Hartford, Connecticut, got into the luthier business to produce a product somewhere between the concert quality ukes, costing over $1,000 and the souvenir quality ukes which wind up gathering dust in the attic.

His ukes are mainly plastic, which, apparently produces a better sound than wood, and cost between $179 and $365.

I'm looking forward to a ukelele/git fiddle duet with Gregor and Jim at the next blogfest.
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