Saturday, December 29, 2007
Dear Mr. Supercomputer had the pleasure of taking the GRE this morning. So before we get to the list of the day, there's a few things we'd like to say first:
Stupid GRE damn test. Fuck up my Christmas break will you?! With your damn words that no one except pretentious pricks know. Soporific?! Succor?! Grandiloquence?!! I've got a vocabulary word: fuck you. But you're such assholes you'd probably remind me that that's two words. Well bite me. You want an analogy? Try this one on for size:
GRE : test :: can eat : my ass
And if I have to spend another minute reading your god-awful reading comprehension compositions I might just go fling poo at the closest ETS office. Where did you find this "reading material." Total bullshit about the architecture of the pilgrims or the recent trend in water purification?! Why not just read me the ingredients of a box of Fruit Loops? Or better yet: just take a crowbar and whack me over the head with it!
But at least I'm done with you. I got a damn good score, no thanks anything relevant I've learned in the past 27 years. So you can just go straight to hell GRE.
Now that that's out of the way... let me present to you the Top 10 GRE (Bullshit) Words of 2007 That You Will Never Hear or Use In Conversation Unless You Are Conversing With Assholes.
10. Hegemony. I actually used this bullshit word in the essay portion. I hate myself.
9. Equanimity. It's even better when the really long bullshit word doesn't mean what it sounds like!
8. Maudlin. Seriously, if I ever heard someone use this word in a conversation, I'd punch them in the crotch.
6. Surreptitious. Just say "sneaky" dammit!!!!!
5. Aver. Give me a fucking break.
4. Noisome. Definition has nothing to do with noise.
3. Soporific. What the fuck?! "Causes drowsiness?" When have you ever picked up a Ny-Quill bottle and it said "Caution - the contents of this bottle are soporific!" Never. That's when.
1.Grandiloquence. "Pompus speech or expression." Yup.
Thursday, December 27, 2007
This coming Sunday the Browns have a chance to sneak into the NFL playoffs. The unfortunate part is that nothing they do this Sunday will matter. No, all we can do is root for Vince Young and the Titans to lose against an Indianapolis team that will probably be resting most of its starters. But the fact that the Browns are even in contention is not only a major step up from previous years, but also a huge, huge surprise. You see, about 20 minutes into the season, they looked like the worst team in football. And in Week 2, the Browns started out the game by giving up an easy touchdown to the Bengals. Yet somehow, some way, they're here with a possible chance at a playoff appearance. Regardless of what happens this Sunday, this has been an impressive year and has reenforced the lesson of Cleveland sports this year: expect the unexpected. We'll recap the top moments in Cleveland sports soon, but for today we'll just look at the players. Today's list is the Top 10 Cleveland Athletes of 2007.
(ed note: these aren't necessarily the best athletes, just our favorites; the ones that we'll remember about 2007)
10. Braylon Edwards. Drops the occasional easy pass, but no one has more highlight catches.
9. Casey Blake. But only because he had the whole "Torgo" look going.
8. Paul Byrd. So he used HGH. He had a heck of a playoffs.
7. Grady Sizemore. (*swoon*)
6. Joe Thomas. Chose to go fishing instead of attending the NFL Draft. Have to respect that.
5. Asdrubal Cabrera & Jhonny Perralta. Partly because their double plays helped ruin the Yankees and partly because they have weird names.
4. Phil "the Battering Ram" Dawson. The kick against the r*vens was one I'll never forget. And then he does it again in the snow and wind.
3. Fausto Carmona. Was awful in 2006 and a CY Young candidate in 2007.
2. Derek "Horse Balls" Anderson. He might not even be a Brown next year, but he has given us the most exciting Browns season since Dear Mr. Supercomputer was a pre-teen.
1. Lebron James. He may be a bandwagonning frontrunner when it comes to picking his favorite teams growing up. But my, is he a fine basketball player. He had one of the most impressive individual playoff games in NBA history and singlehandedly turned around a franchise. Without Lebron, the Cavs are the worst team in the NBA. With him, they are a title contender. We are all witnesses. And he hosted Saturday Night Live.
Honorable Mention: The midge.
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Tonight, Mr. and Mrs. Supercomputer are going drinkin'. M-i-L Supercomputer is in town watching the children, so we're spending tonight at the dive-iest bar in town: Lovejoys. Where the homeless meet 6th Street. In honor, here are your top 10 Beers of 2007.
9. Shiner Hefewiezen
8. Bridgeport IPA
7. New Belgium Brewery - Fat Tire
6. Red Stripe - hooray beer!
5. Real Ale - Rio Blanco Pale Ale
4. Spaten Premium Lager
3. New Belgium Brewery Blue Paddle
2. Independence Brewing Bootlegger Brown
1. Real Ale Fireman's 4
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
Today's top 10 list is the Top 10 Most Disgusting Holiday Themed Foods.
10. Fruit Cake
9. Cranberry "Sauce" - especially that canned stuff.
8. Yams w/ Marshmallows - I'll just take the marshmallow's thank you.
7. Stuffing cooked outside of the turkey - because it's just not right.
6. Valentine's Day Candy Hearts - tastes gross and leads to traumatic elementary school love triangles.
5. Menudo - Is Sunday a holiday?
4. Circus Peanuts - I'm putting this in the Halloween food category.
3. Egg Nog - ok people, it tastes like milk that's gone sour.
2. Candy Corn - mmmmmm....... waaaaxxxx......
1. Cadbury Creme Eggs - If you've ever eaten more than one of these at a time, you're a sick, sick bastard.
Bonus List! Just to get things kicked off right.
Top 10 Coffees of 2007.
10. Starbucks Breakfast Blend
9. Central Market Fair Trade Columbian
8. Equal Exchange Breakfast Blend
7. Cafe Sanora House Blend
6. Starbucks Sumatra
5. Whole Foods Columbian
4. Lola Savanah Texas Pecan
3. Dunkin' Donuts Brand
2. Lola Savanah Cozy Winter's Night
1. Lola Savanah Hawaiian Grog
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
"This whole 'going weeks at a time' is not going to work. It's like, come on, can't you just write for free?" queried one anonymous, ultra-loyal reader.
The WGA strike is focused on restructuring an existing collective bargaining agreement with producers. It is believed that revenue generated by non-traditional sources, such as revenue from online content, is the main obstacle to an agreement being reached.
Dear Mr. Supercomputer has been especially vocal in the WGA strike, sometimes lashing out at entities totally unrelated to any of the parties involved. "Fucking 80 degree weather in December," DMS relayed in an official statement concerning the writer's strike. "And what the hell is this on forehead? Is it infected?" the statement rambled on.
The zionistic readers of Dear Mr. Supercomputer have had to resort to all sorts of measures to make up for the absence of new DMS material. "I've been re-reading every post, one a day, to get my daily Dear Mr. Supercomputer fix," commented one reader, only known by the call name "Ash."
Others are being more creative. "Well, I know this kid with Turretts Syndrome. An hour of that is kind of like a DMS post" commented "Jo."
"I just re-watch PBS shows online and listen to overly-pretentious music and that pretty much gets the job done," commented "Anonymous." "I just photoshopped a bunch of stuff I hate together and emailed it to myself, followed by me ranking the seven worst things Tom Delay did, then spending three hours trying to decide which Circle of Hell Donald Rumsfeld would end up" commented another.
There does not appear to be any end in sight for the WGA either. Whether this means that the rabid fanbase of Dear Mr. Supercomptuer will have to subsist on secondary blogs remains to be seen.
It is certain, however, that the writer's strike isn't the only thing keeping Dear Mr. Supercomputer from posting often.
The Beatles - "Hey Jude"
Jeff Buckley - "Satisfied Mind (live)"
Diana Krall - "Temptation"
Thursday, December 06, 2007
Saturday, December 01, 2007
- "Wet and Rusting" - Menomena
- "23" - Blonde Redhead
- "Fake Empire" - The National
- "Keep the Car Running" - Arcade Fire
- "Paper Planes" - M.I.A.
- "Bros" - Panda Bear
- "Bodysnatchers" - Radiohead
- "Intervention" - Arcade Fire
- "Truck" - The Octopus Project
- "Mother of Pearl" - Nellie McKay
- "Bees Bein' Strugglin" - The Octopus Project
- "The Ivori Palms" - Peter and the Wolf
- "Now, Now" - St. Vincent
- "The Magic Position" - Patrick Wolf
- "Cherry Bomb" - Spoon
- "I Feel it All" - Feist
- "Angel in the Snow" - Elliott Smith
- "Black Blizzard / Red Umbrella " The Octopus Project
- "No Cars Go" - Arcade Fire
- "Slow Show" - The National
- "Phantom Limb" - The Shins
- "My Moon / My Man" - Feist
- "Nude" - Radiohead
- "Sleeping Lessons" - The Shins
- "Dashboard" - Modest Mouse
Keep in mind that the BCS rankings take into account such things as strength of schedule and margin of victory.
Radiohead - "Bodysnatchers"
(P.S. Why the hell are you downloading this track?)
Sunday, November 25, 2007
Reply to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Date: 2007-11-25, 10:05PM EST
I am selling: 1 ultra-sexy, hardly ever been used quarterback.
He's still in good condition, I just don't need him anymore as I've found a suitable replacement. And I might just not use him, so the savings get passed on to you!
This quarterback is still brand new, hardly even out of his wrapper. Still in mint condition. He has rock-hard abs, a wild mane of hair, and a smile that could power all of Euclid.
He has appeared in a few Subway commercials and some sort of Gillette promotion. Other than that, he hardly has a scratch on him. He's still in tip-top shape.
He's been described as a young-colt by those in the know, so you better get him now while you can.
He looks great holding a clip board, doing the YMCA, singing "Walking in Memphis" or just sitting around, waiting for him to be called upon. In fact, he's gotten very good at that last thing.
You can use him however you want. Prop him up for decoration, use him as the greatest wingman of all time, or shoot, even put him in an NFL game.
I am selling him for high draft picks, a defensive tackle, OBO.
Thank you for your interest.
- location: United States, Cleveland, OH
- it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests
Thursday, November 22, 2007
Last year we could only think of five things to be thankful for. This year we've spent a lot more time in reflection and have so many things to be thankful for, we could only convey it in massive Venn-diagram format. So I hope this posts finds you all well, happy and warm with your loved ones.
(click to enlarge)
(Update: Fox NFL Pregame show just had a Thanksgiving montage with Austin's Explosions in the Sky as the backdrop. In honor of that, here's a Thanksgiving Bonus mp3.
Explosions in the Sky - "Your Hand in Mine" )
(Update: However, I might be most thankful for this moment: Derek Anderson telling Matt Stover what's up. Then #81 holding his arms in a T.
Sunday, November 18, 2007
Thursday, November 15, 2007
The weird thing is that it's not even technically time yet. But still, we're in this sort of range of possible time. So every time the phone rings I think, "this is it. Here we go." I go to sleep wondering if we'll make it to the morning. Even Toddler Supercomputer's getting frustrated. She's already very possessive. I think she and I are operating at about the same cognitive level right now.
And in honor of my inability to listen well, read, or even hold conversations, the mp3 this week is from Austin's own The Octopus Project. The other day at Waterloo Records I listened to almost the whole album while standing. What's really lame about it is that I was wearing a shirt with a picture of headphones on it, while listening to headphones. It looked pretty lame.
Anyway, TOP is my new addiction. For songs without words, they're very addicting.
The Octopus Project - "Black Blizzard / Red Umbrella"
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Ever wish you had all of the Dear Mr. Supercomputer MP3s of the Week all in the same place? Preferably in a nice pop-up-able manner?
Well, you're in luck. Because over there on the right there is DMS Radio.... unleashed!
The downside is that you can't chose which song you hear first. But you can cycle through them and skip what you don't like. Kind of like iPod shuffle.
So give it a spin when you've got nothing else to listen to.
Saturday, November 10, 2007
So November 9th came and went with no arrival, so we're still in a holding pattern. I was a little disappointed because it would have been cool to have a birthday on the same day that the Berlin Wall came down, 11/9. Mother-in-Law suggested in that case we could make the middle name "Berlin," which I would be totally up (down?) for.
Anyway, it got me thinking, even though I don't think I fully comprehend the magnitude of the event, I do realize that it was probably the most significant event of my ever-increasing lifetime (and presumably, most of my loyal readers' lifetimes). Obviously it had more meaning to those who lived through the majority of the Cold War and Rocky IV.
So I got to wondering: is it the most significant event in my/our lifetime? Here are some candidates:
-- November 9, 1989 - The disbanding of the Soviet Union, the fall of the Berlin Wall.
-- September 11, 2001 - Terrorists crash two hijacked commuter planes into the Twin Towers.
-- The 2000 Election - Who doesn't play the "what if?" game when it comes to this event? As in, "what if the intended result actually happened?"
-- The advent of the Internet -- This one is kind of cheating and maybe doesn't belong as it wasn't a single event, but it did result in a seachange of the way we do life.
-- Hurricane Katrina - Exposed a side of the U.S. we didn't know existed.
-- The Iraq War/Occupation - This one might take a generation to sort out the consequences.
What others am I missing? I'd still vote for 11/9. But what other significant global or U.S. events have taken place in our lifetime?
Please, the comments.
Friday, November 09, 2007
You start to feel nautious by the fourth time the sun passes by your window. You have to pee more and more. Your gum has lost it's flavor.
But more than the physical agony you're in, it's just the anticipation of getting it over with that's just unbearable.
Right now, the Supercomputer household is in a holding pattern, awaiting the landing of Baby Supercomputer Version 2.0.
I'm on record suggesting that Peter and the Wolf has "Sufjan-like potential" and his latest album The Ivori Palms is a testament to that.
Peter and the Wolf - "The Ivori Palms"
Friday, November 02, 2007
Look, you don't know what it's like. Every day I have these... pressures and obligations. There's all this stuff going on. Calls to be made. I have to eat and defecate (and at different times). I have to take out trash.
Every intake of oxygen is accompanied by the weight of the world beating down on yours truly. Yes, they try to keep us down, but we plod on.
You guys are animals. Day and night I get email after email and comment after comment demanding more, MORE. MORE!
And while last month was our worst posting month since January, we'd like to think that we've turned the corner. We're redoubling our efforts at using the first-person plural. We're going to give 110%, even though we can only give 100%. By definition that is the most that anyone can give.
We've deleted every single fucking message in our inbox. No joke.
If you thought you knew a lot about music, Cleveland sports, Al Gore, Kinky Friedman, Scrubs (seasons 1, 2, and 5), local goings on in Austin, potty-training, car problems, electrical problems, man problems, insomnia, the GRE, popcorn ceiling, Macintosh, Wes Anderson films, P.T. Anderson films, Texas education, Fort Collins house prices, The Onion articles, Canadian Soldiers, public television, and shit before this month, just wait until... later.
Electric Light Orchestra - "Mr. Blue Sky"
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Then I swear we'll get things back to normal around here. Whatever that is.
I'm not sure this should have a special place in general TCE lore. Yes the Indians were up 3-1 and all they had to do was win one of their next three to advance to the World Series, but the series did go seven. And the odds of the Red Sox winning three in a row are about the same as the Indians winning three in a row - which they did. And let's not beat around the bush either: the Red Sox were a better team. True, they spent about $100 million on that better team, but that's neither here nor there.
Others are pulling their hair out for the obvious baserunning gaffe in game 7 where Kenny Lofton could have easily scored and tied the game at 3-3, but was inexplicably held up by third base coach Joel Skinner. While I'm not at all defending the play, some are suggesting that this would have so changed the trajectory of the game that the Indians wouldn't have gone on to give up 9 more runs. That's not true, the Indians were dead before the ship even sank on this one.
No, that's not what's bothersome about this collapse (lowercase). It's not that they lose three straight. It's not that they left a run off the board here and there. Here's what's bothersome: They got absolutely nothing from their best players. They managed to win three games despite not getting any production from their two best position players, Travis Hafner and Grady Sizemore, and nothing from their two best pitchers, CC Sabathia and Fausto Carmona. If they had gotten even just one great performance or even a couple average ones, they could have won the series. And that's what was so awful to watch on Sunday night.
Believe it or not, I would have actually been - I don't know if "comfortable with" is the phrase I want - understanding (?) if the Indians went down getting "normal" performances from their best players. But instead, the Indians' four best players all simultaneously came down with a case of the jitters. So while it's no shame losing to the Red Sox, those four individuals should be ashamed at their performance. The saving grace is that they'll surely get a chance to redeem themselves in the near future.
That's all I can write about this abysmal end to the 2007 Indians season, so I'll let the rest of the bloggers take it from here. Starting this week, we'll get back to our regular programming. And I do apologize for the shitty blogging the past couple weeks. I know you readers demand more than just Cleveland Indians updates.
Anyway, here's the best of what's out there on the Indians season end.
I do not want to wax poetic on the nature of The Cleveland Experience, or to acknowledge the fickle essence of the short series. I want to give credit to the Red Sox, and I congratulate the Indians on a fine season, but I do not feel these things. I feel like my team, and I say my team intentionally, as if I have an organic attachment to them even while acknowledging logically and objectively that no such thing exists ... that my team was presented with an opportunity to succeed in a situation in which NONE of MY TEAMS has EVER SUCCEEDED ... never ... not once ... ever ... and not only did not succeed, but almost went out of their way to NOT succeed. And this is not simply a lamentation of opportunities missed or any sort of attribution of character (here I will be explicit and rational: the men who make up the Cleveland Indians were not weak or cowardly or otherwise deficient, but rather should be applauded for their fine play this season: I have this much perspective) or anything, but rather something that is hard to express. I wanted this championship. I wanted it very badly. It had nothing to do with me, and I still feel emotionally bereft. It isn't rational. It isn't reasonable. It is how I feel.
But she has come to understand that the season starts again every spring and that I'm still here every night where I'll always be. She's become a bit more hardened to the nature of the game and players coming and going. She's become very appreciative of the feeling that a ninth inning win can bring and in the value and the beauty of a well-turned double play. In short, she's become an educated and die-hard Indians fan.
And that's what makes last night's sudden death of a dream all the more difficult to take. Because those tears weren't from a child who had just lost a toy. Those were the tears of a true-blue Indians fan mourning a lost opportunity and a chance to share greatness in some small way. And while it was difficult to try and explain to her the concept of perspective while she was wearing the jersey of the Indians catcher who was crying in his own dugout, I did my best.
And I promised her tickets to Opening Day 2008.
Because that's what we do here in this city. That's who we are.
And I've raised a baseball fan. Those tears tell me there is victory in defeat.
Kissing Suzy Kolber
Boston fans fail to grasp a standard rule of sports fandom, which is: Any team that wins a title that is not your team is fucking annoying. It doesn’t matter how the other team won. They’re not YOUR team, so they can eat a fat dick. Fuck this “appreciating” other teams shit. Normal fans don’t do that. At least Cowboy and Yankee fans have a solid understanding of just why people can’t fucking stand them.
This is a young Indians team that needed its leaders to step up when things seemed darkest. It's hard to gauge, but the failures of these two could linger well into next season. Look what's happened to Alex Rodriguez. Even if the Indians make the playoffs next year, the story line will focus on Sabathia and Hafner and their 2007 failures. Can they handle that additional pressure? It's a question that will be asked until adequately answered on the field.
God Hates Cleveland Sports
The Cleveland Sports Animal
The Indians turned not into a pumpkin but a tomato can in Game 7, as we took a punch in the stomach, a smack to the head, and an uncalled shot to the groin all in order. Down we go, crumpled in a heap, once again waiting for next year.
This team was supposed to be the team of destiny. All year, they always seemed to come through in the biggest of spots. They brought the magic back to the Jake. They seemed to possess that un-quantifiable "grittiness". Maybe that isn't the right word, but oh well. Even tonight, it looked as if they were never going to give up. Westbrook was lucky to only give up 3 runs, and the Tribe was beginning to chip away. Then the Boston bats came back out against our best reliever. And that was that, the end to the 2007 season.
(note: here are my predictions way back in March. Check out how awesome I am. I nailed 7 of the 9 playoff teams (yes, I'm counting San Diego as a playoff team).)
Sunday, October 21, 2007
Actually I'm writing this in the bottom of the 3rd inning. The Indians are only down by two runs, but I'm so confident of the Indians' futility ever since Game 4, I'm sure those two runs will stand up.
Even with hours to go, I'm already writing the obit on the Indians' season. They simply rolled over and died like I didn't think was possible in Baseball. In Football and Basketball I could see how a team could be deflated emotionally or physically, but in baseball I don't think I've ever seen a team just up and call it quits like the Indians did this series.
Even when the Yankees had the greatest choke of all time in 2004, you can't really say they quit. The games were close and the Red Sox had a great deal of luck in that outcome. There was no luck involved here. Ever since the 7 run outburst in Game 4, the Indians have just been hacking at the ball, I guess just assuming that good things will happen.
Red Sox just scored again. Three-zip.
Anyway, as I was saying, baseball teams don't usually give up as a collective. It takes nine individuals to construct a batting order, and it's bizarre that all nine would just fall asleep like this.
And the Indians best two pitchers, their supposed aces, the one-two punch just flat out laid an egg.
Anyway, I'm going to go ahead and publish this post, here in the 4th inning, because I'm that certain of the inevitable Indians' demise.
I should end the season positively: they are a young team who have most of their best players locked up for a while and will probably be the second-best team in the American League for the next few years. So thanks for the memories Tribe, and of course, bringing down the Yankees is always good for a laugh. Until next season....
Friday, October 19, 2007
I don't think I need to explain this one. Needless to say, I think I'll be a whole lot happier and healthier when these damn baseball playoffs are over.
Ghostland Observatory - "Sad Sad City"
(Ed. note: I was told I look thinner today. That's what happens when you don't eat and throw up every night.)
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
bnjoiner (NY, NY): Alright then, how much did you pay for In Rainbows?
Nate Silver: Â£3.21--------------------------------
TheDumbSmartGuy (Cambridge, MA): Regarding In Rainbows...better or worse than the Pitchfork-ordained 9.3?
Nate Silver: It's sort of the Derek Jeter of records.
Nate Silver: Early stage Belle and Sebastian, which means that he's going to wind up being overrated in a few years.
hankchinaski (DC): Does that make Iron and Wine the Casey Blake of records?
Nate Silver: I'm not sure, but with that beard and all, Blake definitely looks like the sort of guy you might run into one night at Empty Bottle or Nick's Beergarden.
(Ed. note: This will have to do until DMS has a chance to fully review RH's In Rainbows.)
Friday, October 12, 2007
The first estimate comes in and you think "holy shit. I can't afford this" (*begins drinking heavily*).
Then when another estimate comes in, significantly cheaper than the first, you're more than happy to pay the people. You almost feel like they're paying you. Even though you're still schilling out hundreds or thousands of bucks. But you feel like they are.
We apologize for the recent lack of an mp3. But since there was no outcry from our legions of loyal readers, we didn't feel particularly prodded to recapture its glory immediately.
Magnolia Electric Company - "What Comes After the Blues"
Friday, October 05, 2007
"They aren't really biters -- more of a nuisance."
Hell yeah they are.
Apparently, it's a type of "midge" that gets the assist in the Indians' victory tonight. They bugged Joba Chaimberlain until he gave up the tying run on a wild pitch, presumably caused by those little fuckers messing with him.
God bless those little midges.
Also, we regret a lot of things we say around these parts. Sometimes, once we sober up, we have to make amends.
After our tirade yesterday you'd think we'd make such retractory statements.
Particularly when it came to light that Our Own Lebron James, the Chosen One, who grew up in Cleveland, wore a damn Yankees cap to last night's game IN CLEVELAND!!
And he continues to profess that he's a Yankee fan. This is just a total bitchslap to the face of Cleveland, especially considering he's not signing an extension and his looming free agency will dominate the 2007-08.
So then, does Dear Mr. Supercomputer mean it when we say such things as:
"If you root for the Yankees, you are probably a prick."
Does this mean that Lebron James, who we pen odes to, is a prick?
(Note: but don't think for a minute we won't be praising the Chosen One once basketball season starts. That's just how we roll.)
Update: Check this shot out.
Thursday, October 04, 2007
I seriously hate the Yankees. Virtually all non-Yankee fans do too. And even Yankee fans should hate themselves. If you root for the Yankees, you are probably a prick. At what point in life did you look at that franchise and say, "yeah, I like the way they can outspend every team by millions and ensure a place in the postseason every year" or "wow! With all those advantages at the outset, I'm sure they'll be great!"
Is it even fun to root for the Yankees? I don't know any real Yankee fans so I don't really know. I just know that I hate those pricks.
This is a matchup of two teams, one with a $200 million payroll and the other with a $60 million payroll. One of the teams features Roger Clemens, who signed for about a million dollars a start. The other features Joe Borowski, who will probably lose a game or two by himself.
Yankee fans are arrogant assholes.
I'll be so glad if the Indians sweep them and end the series in New York, with Alex Rodriguez getting showered in a chorus of boos from those stupid, selfish pricks in Yankee stadium. I hope Yankee manager Joe Torre gets fired. I hope that Derek Jeter joins the Peace Corps.
Man do I ever hate the Yankees.
Even more, I hate Major League Baseball's kowtowing to the richest franchise(s) around. They think they have no financial basis for putting this shit to an end. They think (rightfully, to a point) that if the Yankees aren't in the postseason, they'll lose a crap-load of money. And they're right, sorta. At least, until you realize that the NFL has vastly overtaken baseball in terms of money and prestige largely on the basis of universal competitiveness. The NFL realized long ago that the league is better off and more healthy if everyone is competitive. And in turns it means more money in their pockets.
MLB is run by a bunch of douchebags.
But that totally digresses from my original thesis: God do I ever hate the Yankees.
The media fawns all over them. Vegas has(/had) them at 2/3 odds to win the series over the Indians, which is a total crock of bullshit. No team in baseball should ever be favored by more than some fucked up fraction like 4/7ths or something. Forget the fact that they're pitching blows chunks and the Indians have probably 4 of the best 6 players in the series. The same people telling you shit like "pitching wins championships" are the same fuckers who are saying "playoff experience means something."
Like hell it does. And you can take your postseason experience and shove it.
See, those assholes get off on name dropping "Jeter" and "Rivera" into their lackadasical, unfounded writing, while ignoring "Carmona" and "Sabathia," arguably the two best pitchers in baseball this year. Or "Betancourt" or "Garko."
But that's ok. I don't mind the media putting the Yankees as ridiculous favorites despite winning fewer games in an easier division. Again, dragging the media into this distracts me from my original point: I hate the Yankees.
I hate their fans. I hate their players. I hate their history. People want to wet their pants when clips of Babe Ruth come on, never minding the fact that even way back then, they had a financial advantage like no other franchise did.
The only Yankee whom I do not hate is Reggie Jackson. And that is because he attempted to kill.... the queen.
In a related story, I will argue to the death that Kareem Abdul Jabar is the greatest basketball player of all time.
But every other Yankee I absolutely detest. And as much fun it's been watching them crash and burn in the postseason the past few years, it ticks me off that I know that next year, I'll be watching them in the postseason again, dicking around. Because while they're dumb enough to still not be the best team despite the biggest payroll, they're not dumb enough to not be one of the best four teams in the American League. No one is that dumb. They can at least spend their way to a wild card every year with no thought involved.
Yes, the Yankees can go screw themselves. I hope they get humiliated in Games 2 and 3 like they were in Game 1, where they basically gave up after 5 innings. Because I and every self-respecting human being hates the New York Yankees.
They're almost as bad as the Boston Red Sox.
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
No, the big music news of the week is that Radiohead is releasing their new album, In Rainbows, on October 10th. But not only that, the only method to get it is via download at their site. But wait! The real amazing thing is that you can name your own price. (The website assures you: really!)
That sort of shuffling sound you just heard was record company execs shitting their pants.
While it's probably not the gloom-and-doom scenario that some execs and countless musicians are predicting / hoping for, it's if nothing else the first shot fired across the bow of a decaying business model.
I've read varying figures, but artists get something like $1.50 to $2.50 for every album sold. That means when you pay $13 for a CD, more than 80% of your money is going to someone other than the artists: the record label, the packaging, the music store, iTunes, everyone takes their little piece.
So if consumers can name their own price, Radiohead would only have to average a donation of a few bucks per person to exceed their financial gain over releasing it via a record label. Also, even the people who choose to download it for $0.00 could be a possible financial gain: it's not as if these people would have paid for the CD anyway, and they might be inspired to go buy a previous album, see a show, or buy a T-shirt. Almost like those damn samples at the grocery store. I'm always like, "Sucker! They're just giving me free food!" and then I end up buying their product because it's good. I'm the sucker.
While it would probably be foolish for a lesser known band to do something like this, established bands with a worldwide, loyal fanbase could pull this off.
It immediately reminded me of a chapter in Freakonomics where Dubner and Levitt chronicled a bagel maker who left a box of bagels and asked everyone to pay a dollar. The bagel maker kept scrupulous notes, giving an insight into some fundamental questions about humanity: Are we basically honest? When are we more likely to be honest? What occupations are likely to be most honest?
And sure enough, yesterday on the Freakonomics blog, Steve Levitt entreated Radiohead to allow him to sift through the data of what amounts to an historic social experiment.
There are so many ways to appreciate this endeavor: musically, economically, socially. So I leave it to you, the reader: how much will you pay for the new Radiohead album, In Rainbows?
Sunday, September 30, 2007
Saturday, September 22, 2007
(Consider this the epilogue of ACL 2007. Totally unnecessary, but at this point you'll be willing to take whatever's left. Kind of like the Harry Potter epilogue.)
First, The Arctic Monkeys
And now, Arcade Fire...
My only regret was not getting up close and personal with Regine. There's some great video of her during "Haiti" that was sent to me. I think it'll be on youtube soon so I'll wait for her to post it. Until then, here's the best I found of Arcade Fire ACL 2007.
The rapturous "Wake Up."
Thursday, September 20, 2007
Much apologies for the delay, but as promised, here's your Official Dear Mr. Supercomputer 2007 Austin City Limit Music Festival Recap.
Let's remember above all, that DMS got the hookup from a coworker. We didn't expect to be going to this at the beginning of the week. We did, however, have tickets to The National/Blonde Redhead aftershow at Emo's Saturday night. That was fine with us. We had accepted it. But then, here we were with a ticket for a three-day pass. Below is a retroactive diary of the weekend's events. But not only that, you know how we usually give grades and such for the bands? Well, we're grading everything this weekend to grade how the whole weekend experience is. Everything.
(4:30 AM) Toddler Supercomputer wakes up really early for some reason. That is totally unacceptable. D- We'll bring her into bed and pray that she goes back to sleep. Please... please...
(7:30 AM) Thank God, she went back to sleep. B+
(10:30 AM) Magnolia Cafe. With Mother-in-Law Supercomputer in town (don't ask me why she has the same surname), the wife and I head to Austin fixture, Magnolia Cafe. Nothing like loading up on pancakes and queso before a long day of sun. The food is, as always, fantastic. At this point I'm getting giddy. A-
(1:00 PM) Getting parkside dropoff from the wife is always appreciated. Now it's time to bask in the glow and the possibilities that lay before me.
The first thirty minutes of the ACL Fest might be my favorite time of the whole weekend. It's Friday so there's a lot of chumps still at work so the park is rather empty. You can just walk around and catch a few of the morning acts which are usually nothing too intense. Just sort of a wake up call. I hang around Asleep at the Wheel for a few minutes before heading over to Jesse Malin, but more importantly, a good spot for Joseph Arthur. At this time, it's not too hard to get a good spot anywhere.
(1:30 PM) Joseph Arthur and the Lonely Astronauts. Joseph is a couple minutes late and for a while I was wondering if he had killed himself before going onstage. Thankfully, he shows up and sounds great. Great in that raspy, the-world-is-black kind of way. The Lonely Astronauts are great too. Particularly the girls. One's got a sort of superhero spandex thing going on and the other, well, imagine if instead of a visor over his eyes, Geordi Laforge had eyeliner painted in a stripe there instead. That's what she's got. A great set, but two minor complaints: A) He didn't play a whole lot of older stuff and, B) he seems utterly tired of "In the Sun" at this point. B
(2:30 PM) Pete Yorn vs. the ACL Fire of 2007. So apparently an RV exploded or something. For the first few songs of Pete Yorn's set we're all preoccupied with the billowing black smoke not 100 yards away. I'm not too worried until I can see flames almost touching the surrounding trees. At that point, I begin to back away and eyeball my escape route. Once the APFD get there, the thing's out in a few minutes and we get back to rocking out. Pete Yorn was actually excellent in that it reminded me of how much I love Musicforthemorningafter. Just great song after great song. He's got great energy and the crowd is thin enough that I can get real close. Still though, I have one complaint:
Remember last year when I berated Paolo Nutini for covering Gnarls Barkley's "Crazy" on the very stage that Gnarls Barkley would be playing in a couple hours? Well, Pete Yorn committed an even greater travesty: he played Peter Bjorn and John's "Young Folks" just a few minutes before PB and J would be going on across the yard! Totally uncool! Do you think Pete cleared it with Peter Bjorn and John? You'd hope so. This is all made creepier by my labelling "Young Folks" as my MP3 of the Week this week. Well, since it's fresh on my mind, I can go see how the original authors do with it. B-
(3:30 PM) Peter Bjorn and John. A pretty odd and lackadaisical show. The heat is really starting to take it's toll and I don't think any of us were prepared for how awkward these guys would be. "I heard that Pete Yorn covered our song," Peter starts in a perfect Stockholm accent, "there's an artist where we're from named Pieter Bjorn... Maybe Pete Yorn and Peter Bjorn should tour." Thankfully I beered up before this one. "Young Folks" is a great song though. But anti-props to the girl singer they brought out with the lyrics taped on the back of one of those Heinneken fans. C
(4:00 PM) Blonde Redhead. I cut out early from the Peter Bjorn and John show to size up Blonde Redhead, hoping I can catch "23."
Not only did I not catch "23," but I apparently missed the part of the show where they did anything but play ethereal sounds and not really sing. It makes me very wary of the aftershow scheduled for Saturday night. C
(4:30 PM) Crowded House. You know it's Friday when it's getting later and you can still walk right up to the front of the main stages. All I want to hear is "Don't Dream It's Over." I think that's all anyone wants to hear. It certainly is great, but it clears out quickly afterwards. Myself included. I need to get a good spot for M.I.A. B-
(5:30 PM) M.I.A. She is awesome. She could totally kick your ass. She gives it 100% for the entire set. Her backup singer/dancer pusses out halfway through and has to sit because of the heat. She can't keep up with M.I.A. who, is a total badass. The crowd is the most energetic I've seen yet. It's hard not to get up when M.I.A. is getting you up. Rather than give an extensive description of the show, I'll just link her myspace page and that should give you an idea of what it was like. And I'll tell you that she invited the whole crowd to come dance on stage. A+
(6:30 PM) Spoon, Louis XIV, and Queens of the Stone Age. I love Spoon and I love Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga but after seeing them several times in their own venue, it's hard to want to see them at a massive festival. I stick around for a few minutes, hear "Cherry Bomb" and "Don't Make Me A Target" and head out. B-
Loius XIV is awful. At first I thought it was a joke. And it still might have been but I just didn't get it. The lead singer is a dead ringer for young Ozzie and all their songs are Spinal Tap-esque. I seriously thought they were going to bust out "Big Bottoms." Maybe if they had I'd have stuck around. D-
Queens of the Stone Age is pretty good. I'm not a huge fan of theirs but I like what I've heard. "Little Sister" is a good song as is "No One Knows." In fact, I really enjoy those songs. Maybe I'll stick around. B
Nah, I'm tired, I don't feel like seeing the Killers. I'll try to catch the early bus home. Ooh, and maybe get some Sandy's Hamburgers before I head home.
(7:30) Sandy's Hamburgers. I love Sandy's but they sure do take a while. And my bus home will be showing up any minute. C'mon Sandy's....
(7:45) Capital Metro Bus #10. Ah the 10. I get my burger just in time as the 10 is pulling up. A perfect bus pickup is really a thing of beauty. And the thing I love about the Cap Metro buses is that they run their A/C at like 10 below. Perfect for a sunburnt and hungry transient such as myself. B+ for Sandy's and Cap Metro's incredible air conditioning.
(8:15) I finally get home, a little early today. I need to store up my energy for tomorrow, which should just be one big blowout. On the way home I make a decision: I will be at the front row for Arcade Fire. I will sit through every act and miss every other act to maintain the spot at the front of the stage. I will not go to the bathroom. I will not get food. I will arrive early to stake a claim at the absolute front. And no one will take it away from me. So it is written, so it shall be done.
(7:00 AM) Getting home early last night allowed me to get a full nights' sleep for today. I'm thankful of that when the Girl wakes me up. Still, it's early. Time for Thomas and Friends. B-
(10:30 AM) So in addition to my incredible plan to camp out for Arcade Fire, I begin planning my after ACL activities. I decide I'll park my car downtown at a meter (free on the weekends) this morning when there is parking available and then bus it to ACL. I park as close to Emo's as possible, where the aftershow will take place. That way I'll be able to just leave and go home, because I'm sure I'll be so exhausted I'll want to get home quickly. So I do just that. I park downtown and then take the bus over to Zilker Park. It's fucking brilliant.
(11:30 AM) Good Lord, what am I in for? It's already hot. My two water bottles that I had stuck in the freezer overnight to freeze into a solid block of ice were almost entirely melted by the time I sat down in front of the AMD stage. There's a few other early birds there as well that had the same idea. We're all in this together I suppose. So, I take a deep breath, take one final trip to the port-a-potty and then stake my place along the front railing where I'll be for the next 10 hours.
(12:30 PM) Soundteam. They're really great and I'm getting all into it. Then I start talking to the girl behind me who's boyfriend is the synth player. She said they're breaking up after this performance. What's up with that? I'm just getting to know them! Anyway, they play a great energetic set, heavy on the electronica. A-
(2:30 PM) Paolo Nutini. Ah, Paolo, we meet again. The Scottish man with the Brazilian name has all the women swooning. The Scottish accent is like kryptonite to women. You can be the most wretched looking creature, but if you have a Scottish accent, you are attractive. I like Paolo though. He's singer-songwriter-y. Kind of like a Scottish Pete Yorn. B
(3:30 PM) We're all bonding now. We all are hot as hell, hungry, and we've sweated off our sunscreen, but if we leave now, we'll never get back up at the front. We might get close, but not to the very front. That seems like little to a non-believer but I'm telling you: the front rail is beautiful. Not only does it provide ample back support in between sets, it also ensures there's no one in front of you, allowing your face to hit oxygen instead of someone else's sweaty neck. A- for the front rail.
So, let's see who's next on the sched... oh God..... no. It can't be. No. Fuck, no.
(4:30 PM) Blue October. Kill me. Kill me God. I can't take it anymore. Take me away from here.
No that's not the lyrics to a BO song, but they might as well have been.
Remember in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince (6) when Dumbledore tells Harry to force him to drink the potion no matter how much he protests? And that he can't stop drinking it no matter what he says? And Harry forces it down his throat, all the while Dumbledore is begging him to stop? Yeah, I needed Harry for this one.
Blue October regales us with self-absorbed tales of self-loathing and narcissistic self-abuse for a full hour. It is excrutiating. They are total posers. The lead singer (who is probably at least 35 and 230) has a painted cross-tear and is singing songs such as "I Drilled a Wire Through My Cheek." They are not edgy but they are trying their damnest to be edgy. Actually, I was enjoying one of the songs until the lead singer sang, "she left me with the crying disease." That was it. No more chances. This is simply awful. All the Arcade Fire fans have a look of half-dread, half-nausea on them.
Look, I can't blame Blue October for being at this particular stage. It's not their fault that I have to be here so I can't blame them too much. I knew it would be tough. You don't normally go see your least favorite band on earth. Why would you? I'll tell you why: to be up and close for your favorite band on earth.
For that reason, I have to recuse myself from grading them. If you want a better grade, ask someone who likes them or is even ambivalent towards them. I can't wait for the Arctic Monkeys to get this taste out of my mouth.
(5:30 PM) More and more people are showing up. There's almost no room to sit now, but I'm going to try anyway. I slide down along the wall. Everyone around me is forced to stand. So I'm now staring at some guy's crotch. It's not, I'm dehydrating as we speak, I just sat through a torturous show and now I'm staring at some guy's crotch because he can't sit down.
At least I have this precious rail to lean against.
(6:30 PM) Arctic Monkeys. They jolt some life back into us. In fact, one of the highlights of the festival is "I Bet You Look Good on the Dance Floor." We're all shouting it and pumping our fists. B+
(7:30 PM) Remember when Bart goes to Kamp Krusty and everything sucks, but he keeps repeating, "Krusty is coming. Krusty is coming?" That's the state I'm in right now. Everyone is surging forward, squishing us into the front rail. But I'm glad I have it to hold on to for dear life. This is going to rule. We're getting a little frenzied right now.
(8:30 PM) Arcade Fire. This is the reason I waited for hours. I feel like Andy Dufrane who "crawled through a river of shit and came out clean on the other side."
The first few, pounding chords of "Black Mirror" whip us all into a ravenous, berserked state. Seriously, we are all losing are sanity right now. Everyone around me not only knows every word to every song, but every note, every harmony, every inflection for every song. Sometime that's annoying, but the speakers are right in front of us so we can't even hear each other and besides, Arcade Fire is built perfectly with a lot of shouts and call-and-response stuff.
After that it's "Keep the Car Running" just like on the album. I should mention that there's like 10 of them on stage. They have strings, horns, and of course, a massive pipe organ. They are all very animated. We are very animated. "Laika" is one of my favorite live tracks they play. While I like that song ok, it's awesome live. I mean, every line is like a call to arms. "Alexander! Older brother!..."Our father.... SHOULDA... just named you 'Laika'!" It's awesome.
After that, it's "No Cars Go." Phenomenal. I can't say enough about the voilinists.
"Haiti" (another surprisingly great live track), "Intervention," "Antichrist Television Blues,"Windowsill" and "The Well and the Lighthouse" follow, going heavy on the Neon Bible.
"Ocean of Noise" kind of lulls us to sleep. Or rather, it's the calm before the storm. They close with a 1-2-3 punch of an extended version of "Power Out," "Rebellion (Lies)," and encore with "Wake Up." This might be the best 15 minutes of my life. "Power Out" is intense. My entire section is jumping and pumping their fists. During "Rebellion" one of the percussionists is throwing everything around on stage high up into the air. Then he runs down into the crowd with a big bass drum, full speed ahead. "Wake Up" is probably the ultimate crowd-anthem. Some are even raising their arms to heaven like this is a praise service. I'd say that's about right. A+
We stick around for a few minutes telling ourselves how worth it the wait was. And it was. So worth it. I'm not sure if I'll ever get to see them live ever again. Anywhere they play tickets will get scooped up so quickly you'd have to just be lucky or pay a trillion dollars on ebay.
But the night does not end here. It's off to Emo's for The National (I'm wavering on Blonde Redhead at this point.)
(11:00 PM) The National @ Emo's. Look, I know I'm pretty dehydrated at this point perhaps even to the point of hallucination. I haven't peed in 12 hours and what's more disturbing, I don't really have to. But damnit, if this isn't the best show I've ever seen.
(Ed. Note: We here at Dear Mr. Supercomputer have oft been accused of using hyperbole so much that everything we spout becomes meaningless. While these charges are certainly not unfounded, I assure that this was a fucking great show. Seriously, maybe the best I've ever seen.)
I get there just as the band is starting. I almost forgot how small actual non-ACL venues can be. I didn't get there eight hours ahead of time and I still can see well. What a concept!
"Fake Empire" is of course fantastic. They play an amped up version of "Slow Show." I think I might start crying. My favorite song of the show and maybe the weekend (Arcade Fire excluded) is "Abel." The lead singer hops up onto the speakers and almost hits his head on the beams from the low-lying ceiling of Emo's.
At the end of the show, I make the semi-conscious decision to call it a night and call it a weekend. I go get a Lone Star from the bar and sit down and sip my cool water-beer as if I had just completed a long day of work. A+++
(1:30 AM) My plan to park my car downtown in the morning was brilliant, although that seems like years ago. It takes me five minutes to get to my car and get the hell out of there. But you know what? I haven't eaten anything since this morning and I'm also thirsty as hell. So I head over to Kirby Lane Cafe to scarf down something at 1:30 AM. Of course the place is packed, but since I'm by myself I can slip in at the bar without waiting.
I guess my body was telling me that I had lost a lot of saline when I looked down and realized I ordered a lemonade, chips and salsa, and a bowl of soup. Either that or I'm pregnant. A- for the food and for not having to wait.
(2:30 AM) Precious shower. Precious bed.
(7:00 AM) I can't get up. I just can't. Thankfully, Mother-in-Law rescues the child her father by keeping an eye on her for a few more hours. A+ to Mother-in-Law
Like I said, I eschew Sunday in order to get myself back in working order before tomorrow. I've seen the two bands I was dying to see (Arcade Fire, the National) and got a few unexpected surprises (M.I.A., Soundteam). My ticket was free and I need to let the M-in-L get back to Dallas and spend time with the Girl.
When CBS cut out to show the last seven minutes of the Browns' win over Cincinnati (A+), I couldn't think of a better possible weekend. Not even in a Fake Empire.
Overall Weekend GPA: 3.578
Sunday, September 16, 2007
Friday, September 14, 2007
I wonder how many times that joke will be made in Austin today as scores of otherwise loyal workers play hookie to see bands like Peter Bjorn and John.
Speaking of which, let's go with Peter Bjorn and John's "Young Folks."
Peter Bjorn and John - "Young Folks"
These guys unfortunately match up against Blonde Redhead, recipients of the first ever DMS MP3 of the Week and probably still the frontrunner for song of the year. However, we've got tickets to the BR / The National aftershow at Emo's so we might skip out on daytime Blonde Redhead in favor of PB and J. Stay tuned.
As for the rest of the festival, we'll be sure to bring you a recap once the whole thing is over. Until then, feel free to browse last year's ACL recap.
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
Dear Mr. Supercomputer.
While we had pretty much given up on the music fest this year due to money and time constraints, little did we know that God had a plan for DMS all along. We're getting the hookup from Filter Magazine! OK, not really, but a friend who works as a part time Filter rep is getting DMS the Hook. Up. Hell yeah.
Within minutes of the news, DMS was working on taking Friday off and getting a Toddler Supercomputer-sitter.
We haven't really even looked over the schedule that much. It feels like a "play it by ear" kind of year. The only band that I've marked off is Arcade Fire. But unfortunately, the White Stripes were supposed to halve that crowd, but have recently canceled. Apparently Meg has a tummy-ache. I'm not sure why they couldn't find someone else to crash cymbals for an hour but what's done is done.
So while the blogging may be lean this weekend, rest assured we'll have a nice long recap of the weekend's events, much like the 2006 version, but hopefully fewer drug references that were meant to be funny, but just ended up getting me in trouble with my in-laws.