Top Five

Well, thanks to all of you who sent me a potential candidate for my Top Five Saddest Songs Ever Written. It was a bummer to read every one of them, so in this case, that’s a good thing. The ones that I considered Saddest of All are these Top Five, complete with lyrics, so you can be sad, too. All the other entries submitted are listed at the bottom as well, all of them quite sad, but only five can make the Top Five.

To borrow the words of my friend Dave, remember this is only an exhibition, not a competition, so please: no wagering.

1. And So It Goes—Billy? Joel (mine, remained on top)

In every heart there is a room
A sanctuary safe and strong
To heal the wounds from lovers past
Until a new one comes along

I spoke to you in cautious tones
You answered me with no pretense
And still I feel I said too much
My silence is my self-defense

And every time I’ve held a rose
It seems I only felt the thorns
And so it goes, and so it goes
And so will you soon I suppose

But if my silence made you leave
Then that would be my worst mistake
So I will share this room with you
And you can have this heart to break

And this is why my eyes are closed
It’s just as well for all I’ve seen
And so it goes, and so it goes
And you’re the only one who knows

So I would choose to be with you
That’s if the choice were mine to make
But you can make decisions too
And you can have this heart to break

And so it goes, and so it goes
And you’re the only one who knows

2. Long Black Veil—Johnny? Cash (Jen Bock)

Ten years ago, on a cold dark night
Someone was killed, ‘neath the town hall light
There were few at the scene, but they all agreed
That the slayer who ran, looked a lot like me
The judge said son, what is your alibi
If you were somewhere else, then you won’t have to die
I spoke not a word, thou it meant my life
For I’d been in the arms of my best friend’s wife
She walks these hills in a long black veil
She visits my grave when the night winds wail
Nobody knows, nobody sees
Nobody knows but me
Oh, the scaffold is high and eternity’s near
She stood in the crowd and shed not a tear
But late at night, when the north wind blows
In a long black veil, she cries o’er my bones

3. Parallel Lives—Chris? Cunningham (another one of mine that I thought of this week)

Our place is outside the house where house rules won’t be broken.
I set aside a piece of my soul.
The ring around the moon at night will be my only token.
I’ll place it on your finger when we go.
We lead parallel lives:
Never too far, never to touch.
We lead parallel lives:
And I love you very much.
Separated by a gap in time, I remember our first kiss.
That’s not the only thing that I miss.
Every wink, every unsaid word, every song we listened to,
I’m blessed with the memories of you.
We lead parallel lives,
With respect in our resistance.
We lead parallel lives,
And we’re one in our distance.
As we are we’re worlds apart but I can still command your eye.
I can make you smile, twitch or blush.
And the other night when the lunar light had spread across the sky,
it wasn’t the white wine that gave the rush.
We lead parallel lives:
Like an arrow straight and true.
We lead parallel lives:
that of me and that of you.
I’ll be sure to let you know when I’m coming back to town.
You say that when I’m home you like to see me.
You might get a letter or two but you’ll never find me at your door.
I hear the air in Georgia’s kind of sticky.
We’ll lead parallel lives
That will never come together.
We’ll lead parallel lives
And perhaps it’s for the better.

4. Cat’s In the Cradle—Harry? Chapin (Josh Schneider)

My child arrived just the other day,
He came to the world in the usual way.
But there were planes to catch, and bills to pay.
He learned to walk while I was away.
And he was talking ‘fore I knew it, and as he grew,
He’d say, “I’m gonna be like you, dad.
You know I’m gonna be like you.”
And the cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon,
Little boy blue and the man in the moon.
“When you coming home, dad?” “I don’t know when,
But we’ll get together then.
You know we’ll have a good time then.”
My son turned ten just the other day.
He said, “Thanks for the ball, dad, come on let’s play.
Can you teach me to throw?” I said, “Not today,
I got a lot to do.” He said, “That’s ok.”
And he walked away, but his smile never dimmmed,
Said, “I’m gonna be like him, yeah.
You know I’m gonna be like him.”
And the cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon,
Little boy blue and the man in the moon.
“When you coming home, dad?” “I don’t know when,
But we’ll get together then.
You know we’ll have a good time then.”
Well, he came from college just the other day,
So much like a man I just had to say,
“Son, I’m proud of you. Can you sit for a while?”
He shook his head, and he said with a smile,
“What I’d really like, dad, is to borrow the car keys.
See you later. Can I have them please?”
And the cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon,
Little boy blue and the man in the moon.
“When you coming home, son?” “I don’t know when,
But we’ll get together then, dad.
You know we’ll have a good time then.”
I’ve long since retired and my son’s moved away.
I called him up just the other day.
I said, “I’d like to see you if you don’t mind.”
He said, “I’d love to, dad, if I could find the time.
You see, my new job’s a hassle, and the kid’s got the flu,
But it’s sure nice talking to you, dad.
It’s been sure nice talking to you.”
And as I hung up the phone, it occurred to me,
He’d grown up just like me.
My boy was just like me.
And the cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon,
Little boy blue and the man in the moon.
“When you coming home, son?” “I don’t know when,
But we’ll get together then, dad.
You know we’ll have a good time then.”

5. All I Want Is You—U2? (Ashley Brooks)

You say you want
Diamonds on a ring of gold
You say you want
Your story to remain untold
But all the promises we make
From the cradle to the grave
When all I want is you
You say you’ll give me
A highway with no one on it
Treasure just to look upon it
All the riches in the night
You say you’ll give me
Eyes in a moon of blindness
A river in a time of dryness
A harbour in the tempest
But all the promises we make
From the cradle to the grave
When all I want is you
You say you want
Your love to work out right
To last with me through the night
You say you want
Diamonds on a ring of gold
Your story to remain untold
Your love not to grow cold
All the promises we break
From the cradle to the grave
When all I want is you
You…all I want is…
You…all I want is…
You…all I want is…
You..

And the Rest of the Best… thanks everybody…

Honey—Bobby? Goldsboro (Jim Bock)

Yesterday—The? Beatles (Greg Willis)

Beth—KISS (Chris Lorch)

I’ll Be There—Escape? Club (Shane Raatz)

Happy-Happy?, Joy-Joy—Ren? & Stimpy (Kevin Poquette)

Grace Is Gone—Dave? Matthews Band (Dave Schrubbe)

You may note: the majority of the Saddest Songs have love as a theme, whether love lost, or love unfulfilled, love unattainable, whatever. I don’t know about you, but that just confirms for me that love is probably the most powerful human emotion there is: it can, at the same time, take a person to the highest peaks of euphoria, or drag them down to the lowest depths of despair. That’s somethin’.

Have a good Thursday, anyway.

Punctual

I can’t believe this… two damn days in a row of getting content up on the site on the days I’ve targeted for said content to be posted. I’m impressed with myself.

Great, that’ll probably jinx it.

Joe Knitt will recognize this brief diatribe from Tuesday evening, but the rest of you could be let in on it, so…

What the hell is with AMC? The network that passes itself off as “American Movie Classics” is playing crap like Chain Reaction, the flop starring Keanu Reeves and Morgan Freeman from waaaaaaaaaaay back in 1996. Last fall, I remember rolling past and seeing major “classics” like Predator 2… Beyond these questionable programming choices, they’ve got commercials on that network now, too. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I swear I remember watching actual classics on AMC, sans commercial breaks. I dunno, somewhere along the line, Turner Classic Movies left them way in the dust.

Wow, so, here’s another problem I’m having tonight: I think Schrubbe called it “brain freeze” once, but I’m using that phrase to indicate that my mind is working both slowly and poorly right now. That being said, I’m going to quit while I’m ahead.

The new video is up, it was taken last Saturday, while I was wrappin up my beer-making. Enjoy!

Oh, PS: come back tomorrow (Thursday) for the Top Five Saddest Songs of All Time!

Rambler

So here we are, a Tuesday, late in the morning, Tuesday being the day that I usually like to have a new Interesting & Factual Tale ready to go up. Unfortunately, I haven’t thought much at all about what that Tale should be. Consequently, I sit here and ramble on whilst I think on’t.

So far today, I’ve made the bed, vacuumed, washed dishes from yesterday, cleaned the bathroom, thought about cleaning the kitchen, watched 20 minutes of Price Is Right, put away some clothes that were laying around, and watched the outside temperature rise, very slowly, to the point now where I think I could go outside on the fire escape/balcony-ish area and have a smoke on my new pipe that came in the mail yesterday.

Now, make no mistake, I’m not looking to start a mean tobaccy habit here, but I thought it would be fun to smoke a big ol’ pipe time to time. It’s totally a style thing. I’m a big geek boy.

What else, what else? Haven’t played sheepshead ONCE online since I’ve been back here for the spring semester… came close once or twice, but never got all the way there. Hoping to remedy that tonight… if you wanna play and I haven’t gotten in touch with you, it means I didn’t know you were available, so let me know when is good for ya.

So I got the mail yesterday, and there was an envelope for me, it held my monthly credit card statement. It looked like it had been through the ringer, so I think I’ll use my own envelope to send that badboy in this month. Take a look at this thing.

I went to Leaf & Bean downtown to see Chris Cunningham play on Sunday evening, even though it was frickin cold as hell outside. It was pretty good. I’ve seen better shows, but I was still entertained.

I got all psyched up yesterday to “present” the discussion of this book I had to read to Monday’s class, and then we talked such a long time about all the other stuff we read, we didn’t have time. So all that preparation for nothin’. I’ll just have to do it next week instead I guess.

I decided I’m getting rid of the short-lived “mobile.the80srewind.net” site, cuz really, it’s kinda lame. I mean, just make some time to stop by, y’know? This is not to mention that there are days you really need pictures to make the blog effective, and, well… yeah it was stupid.

It’s really warmed up now, to -1 degree Fahrenheit, so I think I’m gonna go give this pipe a shot now.

Oh, and I DID think of something to write a Tale about, so check that out, too.

Case of the Mondays

Howdy… Not a lot of time, but thought I would drop a quick word on this Monday afternoon… Lemme tell ya something about reading dry, boring, academic books: it sucks even more the second time around. I had to read a book today for class that we already read in a different class last semester as well, and while this allowed my reading to be a bit less thorough, it was just as boring. Next week we get to read new stuff, so… well, actually, is that any better? Eh.

Hey, I’ve had inquiries as to when the list of Saddest Songs Ever Written is going to be up on the site, and it should be Wednesday or Thursday. I may put it off until the latter so as to give Thursday something special all its own. A nice gesture, I think. In the meantime, you can still let me know what YOU think the Saddest Song Ever Written is.

Back to my book re-view now…

Bass

Nice to have powered speakers in my room once again. You may have seen the box w/ the speakers in yesterday’s video.

Yeah, so now I get to listen to my mp3’s more of the time… y’know, it just makes sense to. This is the thing about digital music: in the early days of Napster (and even before that) when downloading music from the Internet first started to be all the rage, I never really got into it. Even after I had my own computer and capabilities to participate in the piracy, I only would use said ability to maybe download a song that I couldn’t get out of my head (see Dave Clark Five’s “Five O’Clock? World”) or a new one that I found particularly catchy (see Alien Ant Farm’s “Smooth Criminal”).

Well, my opinion of digital tuneage has swung considerably. I’ve had it with CD’s, man. All the storage space required for these discs that can only hold about 74 minutes of music? What’s that? And the handling of the discs, the opening and closing of drawers, the getting up, the sitting down, I’ve had it. I want a digital jukebox: everything on the computer, all I have to do is pick the tunes from Windows Explorer, load ’em into Winamp, that’s it. And if I wanna load up a playlist that’ll go all day, I can do it.

I know what you’re saying!! “Why don’t you just rip all your CD’s then, hoser?” Ah, yes, if it were that simple. But are you aware that I own some 300-350 CD’s? Who the hell wants to take all the time to rip those damn things? Not me, my friend, not me. I need to hire some lacky that’ll do it for me for virtually no money. In fact, for absolutely no money, just a couple beers. But where will I find such a lacky? There’s the rub.

And here is a wacky thing: while I don’t like handling CD’s, or changing them, or whatever, I still enjoy having them and shopping for them. Like, say you could circumvent buying CD’s altogether, just download them from a label’s website or what have you, I wouldn’t want to do that. I like going to the record store. I like flipping through the jewel cases. I like browsing through the collection that I keep in two large books.

I am a crazy, sick bastard.

Take a look at the Interesting & Factual Tale on the bill for today, written by friend and colleague Ryan Wordell, whose half-naked self is pictured on the main Tales page.

Oh, oh! I almost forgot! Good responses initially to the call for your Saddest Song(s) Ever Written, thanks much. Keep ’em coming, (if you haven’t offered one already) and I’ll have a list up probably this time next week.

Revelation & Catharsis

Had a busy few days here, and we’ll certainly hit on those topics in today’s update. First, though, the revelations:
1. I could open a small office supply store with the wealth of notebook paper and pens that I own.
2. I could provide towels to a 10-room motel with all the towels and washcloths I own.
3. I could open a soup kitchen with all the cooking equipment I own.

I got up at 5 AM yesterday to go to my local Wally-Wal-Mart? (wow, my computer knows how to spell Wal-Mart) to meet Dave Mohrman and my truckload o’ goods from Wisconsin. Got some much-needed help in bringing everything back to the apartment from my friend Ben. We dropped the stuff off, then I bought him breakfast, came back here around 8:30 and proceeded to unpack/reorganize the crib for the next 15 hours. Boy, is it ever nice to have this stuff again, though. I’m particularly fond of all the cooking equipment (I can have waffles for breakie or dinner whenever I want) and my desk chair. Oh, how I’ve missed my chair… (link points to a chair that is approximately the one I have, not quite exactly.)

So yeah, yesterday I was just workin’ on the house pretty much all day. I also gave the beer bottles that I do have a bath in preparation for the bottling process, which will go down on Saturday. I made a shopping trip in the morning as well, so I guess I didn’t spend quite 15 hours in the unpacking, it was closer to 13.5, since I drove to Belgrade for the few remaining beer bottling supplies I needed (some siphon tube, bottle-filler wand-thingy) and stopped at Home Depot on the way back for a bit o’ lumber (something that I’m quite ashamed of and will never do again — from now on, if I want decent lumber, I go to a lumber yard) and a can of clear spray lacquer.

I did some laundry for the first time in this apt on a day other than Sunday when I washed the towels Mom & Dad sent. I almost forgot about the last load completely, but remembered during the last commercial break of Smallville.

The return of my chair to this bedroom has complicated the sitting process somewhat. Now there is some climbing over the bed involved. It’s either that or push the chair completely out of the bedroom every time I get up.

Monday was kinda busy as I had reading and writing to do for my class this evening, and between doing that and all my procrastinatory activities, I filled up the day reeeeeeeeal fast. Additionally, I took a ride with Ewan & Meredith to Target, and, ummm, damn where else did we go?? Oh: it was Staples. Yeah. See, a steamer got spilled on their keyboard and they needed a new one. Check this out: they’ve got a volume control on the keyboard. I thought that was pretty sweet. Mine is pretty basic; the only thing I was looking for when I bought it was the single-row “Enter” key. If you’ve ever had the type with the big enter key, you know what a pain in the ass that can be, especially if you’re used to one with the narrower version.

You will take not with this here keyboard that the Enter key takes up just one row of the keyboard. It allows the keys above it (“|/” and “Backspace”) to be on separate rows. You get a keyboard like this one, and if you type a LOT (like I or most other web-dependent Americans) you get used to the layout and, even if you don’t practice textbook perfect typing technique, you use most of your fingers and you stop looking at the keyboard. Well, if you suddenly get to using one like pictured at left here (which retails for 10 dollars and whose manufacturer doesn’t even have a website)

it’ll mess up your whole system. If you squint you can see the massive enter key on this board, but look above at the Memorex to dig what I getting at: with the big enter key, the space devoted on the Memorex to the “|/”-key is enveloped by Enter, and they divide the area of the “backspace” key between backspace and “|/”. If you’ve grown accustomed to the normal-sized backspace, and man, you gotta switch over to a mega-Enter keyboard, suddenly you’re typing and you need to backspace, and you get this instead, “\\\…”

Well, that’s all I’ve got to say about that. Check this out: there is actually a video posted in a timely manner this week, on a Wednesday. Here you get a sampling of the shambles I found my apartment in with all the boxes yesterday, and there’s a brief tour of the goods that arrived.

‘Til tomorrow or so then, take it easy.

Wow, I can’t believe it’s only 10:30.