Monday, October 31, 2005

Jude Law is an Idiot

Jude Law cheated on Sienna Miller. With the Maid.
I know this is an old story, but to be honest I did not know what Sienna looked like, so I did not take much interest. Jude Law is an idiot. He cheated on this woman. Unless the maid is Helen of Troy, Jude Law is the king of the horse's asses.

Judge Alito's Daughter

Has anybody noticed that Judge Alito's daughter is a babe? Even as an oil painting, that old horndog Clinton can't keep his hands off her.

Mom's kind of cute too. The son is wondering if this will help him score with the chicks.

Alito for the Supreme Court

President Bush has nominated New Jersey native Sam Alito for the Supreme Court, finally putting hte Miers debacle in the rear view mirror. The preseident should have nominated Alito in the first place, but better late than never. Alito is not Posner, Easterbrook or Kozinski, but I can't complain. He is, after all, a Jersey Guy.

Read more about Judge Alito here.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Bob Dylan - Pathway to the Stars

Pathway to the Stars is a two disc compilation of live tracks from the 2000 tour that I picked up on Dimeadozen. Sound quality is at least a B+ throughout the comp, but the performances are all A+, and the band is top notch.

The tracks are drawn from throughout his career, ranging from Hattie Carroll to Not Dark Yet, with some rarities like This Wheel's on Fire. There is a killer version of Desolation Row. The arrangements are completely different from the recorded versions. Usually I have to hear the lyrics before I know what song is being played.

As he has aged, Dylan's voice has taken on the timbre of his hero, Blind Willie McTell, though I am sure he would reject the comparison. As a result, the old songs take on a gravitas that was only implied before. The newer songs just sound fucking great. Right now, I'm listening to "trying to Get to Heaven Before they Close the Door." It makes me want to pray for his soul and mine.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

She did the honorable thing

Given Ms. Miers legendary loyalty to W, she pretty much had to withdraw. The president put her in an untenable position, but at least she had the good sense to pull out before being rejected, which would have humiliated the man she thinks is the best ever. Now let's see if he has the cojones to nominate Richard Posner. I doubt it, but one can hope.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Hemingway & The Spanish Civil War

Hemingway has long been one of my favorite writers. His best work is stunning in its clarity and originality while his lesser work is, well, it is stunning in its awfulness. The bad stuff (Across the River, Dangerous Summer) is so bad that it is unintentionally funny, but the good stuff (Francis Macomber, Kiliminjaro, Farewell to Arms) is as good as American letters get.

Hemingway was apparently an absolute beast of a man. This article/book review paints a particularly nasty picture of Hemingway's destruction of a literary rival, Jon Dos Passos. The more I learn about Hemingway, such as the nastiness, the petty vindictiveness, the general bullshit he peddeld about his life, the less I think of him and it impacts what I think of his works. I still love the good stuff, but I cannot defend EH like I used to.

Another issue with EH, and other artists, is that no price has ever been paid for his support of Soviet communism. The name Ezra Pound is never mentioned without his support of Italian fascism being cited, and rightly so. Hemingway gave at least passing support to a much more vicious regime, yet it is passed off as idealism, if it is mentioned at all.

Hurricane Wilma

My parents live in Florida, right in the path of Hurricane Wilma. My mother is visiting my sister in Texas, so I know she is safe. My dad is in Florida. Other than a voicemail from yesterday morning, I have not heard from him. My folks live on the first floor of an apartment building which is right on the intercoastal waterway. I have not seen any reports of storm surges in the intercoastal, so hopefuly he has not been flooded out. Power is out throughout South Florida, and it seems that the cell networks are down. Hopefully, everything is ok.

Just go, Harriet, just go

What was the President thinking when he nominated Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court? I am sure she is bright and hard working and a lovely woman, but man did he miss the mark with this one.

I have swum in legal circles long enough to know her type: She is a more than competent attorney and an able administrator. I am not knocking her for that, but any medium sized city has dozens of attorneys like her, and they should not be on the Supreme Court either. Nominating her means the President decided to ignore the deep conservative bench for a cipher, but a cipher that he, and apparently only he, knows. The President promised to nominate justices like Scalia and Thomas. I voted for the President at least in part because of that promise. I don't like being hoodwinked.

Any senator who voted against John Roberts simply cannot vote for Miers. There is no credible argument that Miers is qualified while Roberts is not. Hopefully there are enough other senators who will vote against Miers to scuttle her nomination. Maybe Harriet will do the honorable thing and withdraw. The President can redeem himself by nominating Posner, Easterbrook, or Kozinski. I doubt we'll be that lucky, but one can hope, can't one?

Monday, October 24, 2005

Marah at Maxwells

My wife and I went to see Marah at Maxwell's in Hoboken last Friday night, October 21. It was our first time seeing Marah, after several previous attempts were aborted for a variety of reasons.

Opening act was the Drams, a band from Texas. They were pretty good. The Drams have a keyboard payer which adds a nice dimension to their indie rock sound. I don't know whether they have any music released, but they did mention they would be going into the studio to record a new record.

Marah were fantastic. The Bielanko brothers have a great dynamic onstage. There is a big brother vs. kid brother competitiveness, coupled with a real affection for each other and the music they are creating. New guitarist Adam Garbinski has got the real rock and roll chops down cold. He hits all the right chords, and hits all the right poses onstage, and looks a little like "you're my guitar hero" Mick Jones. Kirk Henderson, on bass and keyboards, and the new drummer, whose name I did not catch, provide a solid foundation for the Bielanko brothers' incredible songs. The band is loose, loud and funky live, they tell great stories in between songs, and they are just plain fun to watch. I was deathly ill with a wicked head cold, but I could not stop dancing and singing along. If anybody recorded the show, I'd love to get a copy of the recording.

Marah is made up of human jukeboxes, so every song is instantly recognizable. They are also remarkably creative so those same recognizable songs are not derivative. Springsteen, the Pogues, Tom Waits, the Rolling Stones, The Replacements, Bob Dylan, Steve Earle are all hovering in the background of their music. If you have never heard their music, pick up Kids in Philly and you will be hooked. If you haven't seen them live, go see them because you won't be disappointed.

You can check out Marah tour dates and buy their records at their website.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

First Post

I am at home, sick as a dog from the headcold my nieces gave me over the weekend, and I figured this was as good a time as any to start my blog.

You can expect my thoughts on music, sports, and politics, all with a healthy dose of sarcasm.

And away we go...