Saturday, August 27, 2005

Dare I Get My Hopes Up?

I have my tickets for the Streetlight Manifesto show, but I am not sure that I should get my hopes up. Here's my recent history with the band:

Last summer, Streetlight booked their first-ever show in Salt Lake. I was out-of-my-mind excited for about two seconds until I realized the show was on a Sunday. Should I break my perfect streak of no Sunday concerts? I didn't have too much of a choice because Traci wouldn't let me go.

I was, of course, very blue. The day after the show I checked around the internet to see if I could find a review of the show. It turns out Streetlight's bus broke down somewhere between Denver and here and they never made it. I took this as a sign of the importance of Sabbath Day observance.

In February the band announced they would be playing the Ska is Dead tour. Here was the real Sabbath Day reward - not just Streetlight, but Streetlight opening for the Voodoo Glow Skulls! Yep, I had made the right decision to pass on the Sunday show.

In classic Voodoo Glow Skulls fashion - despite the fact that the SLC date was scheduled - the Ska is Dead tour made a last-minute decision to skip SLC entirely. Streetlight finished the tour, headed off to a European tour and I thought I had missed my chance. Their website said that after Europe they would stop touring and focus on a second album.

I guess I'm in luck. Recording plans have been postponed. They're scheduled for the Lo-Fi Cafe on September 14. Cross your fingers for me.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Dancing Nun, Thanks Belgium

Traci sent me a link to this story a few days ago with the comment, "This nun is still european and can't resist the techno beat."

The story was published all over the place, but it took me a really long time to track down the actual picture. I was hoping it would be more scandalous.

"Belgian sister Johanne Vertomme (L) 29, from Loppem, Belgium is seen dancing with Mark (no surname given), a missionary, during the Catholic World Youth Day, in Cologne Germany, August 20, 2005. The Belgian nun's acrobatic and indecorous dancing with the missionary during the Catholic World Youth Day in Germany over the weekend earned her a reprimand from her mother superior, a Belgian paper said August 22, 2005. "I wouldn't do this at home but at such occasions I get carried away by the enthusiasm of the group," the 29-year-old told the paper later. "My mother superior raised the issue today: she thinks I should watch out a bit and bear in mind that I represent our community," Vertommen said. Pope Benedict attended the celebration at the Marienfeld, outside Cologne, in the presence of some 700,000 people. Picture taken August 20, 2005. QUALITY FROM SOURCE BELGIUM OUT EDITORIAL USE ONLY NO THIRD PARTY SALES REUTERS/Stringer"

Monday, August 22, 2005

Spencer vs. George Bush

I was a bit disturbed when I read an article in Salt Lake Tribune about President Bush's visit to Utah today. I wasn't upset that the President was coming, nor was I upset that there were protests. I felt pretty much indifferent toward all of that. What bothered me, was the following:
"The president's schedule called for him to depart Utah immediately following his VFW Convention appearance and head to the tiny town of Donnelly, Idaho, where he was to spend a couple of days mountain biking and relaxing prior to a speech Wednesday before a National Guard group in Nampa, Idaho."

This is the third article that I've read this week about the President and his mountain biking. Now I admit, I am not always hangin' out with celebs like Shelley Osterloh, but my job still keeps me pretty busy. To complete my small number of responsibilities, I have to go to work basically everyday.

The President has a really important job. I would imagine that he has a lot more to worry about in his job than I do at mine. Why is it, though, he only has to go work maybe half of the time? I mean, he visits Veterans in Utah to promote Social Security reform for an hour and a half and then he needs to take two days off to go mountain biking in Idaho before he talks to Veterans there for an hour and a half? Something seems a little screwy here.


George Bush vs. Seth Cohen
Michael Moore Comes to UVSC

Friday, August 19, 2005

Jeffery "Scrotum Bag" Barnes

Maybe the reason we don't have cable tv is because we don't want to be called names.


Wed Aug 17, 8:30 PM ET

CHICAGO - LaChania Govan said she got bounced around by her cable company when she called to complain. She made dozens of calls and was even transferred to a person who spoke Spanish — a language she doesn't understand.

But when she got her August bill from Comcast she had no trouble understanding she'd made somebody mad. It was addressed to "Bitch Dog."

"I was like you got to be freaking kidding me," said Govan, 25. "I was so mad I couldn't even cuss."

Govan said the only thing she did to Comcast employees that might be considered rude came after a few dozen calls when she felt she was treated shabbily. "I did tell them, 'You know what, it has to be a qualification to work for your company that you have to be rude,'" she said.

Govan said she talked to a supervisor and he offered her two months free service, which she turned down.

Finally Wednesday, about two weeks after she got her bill, somebody from the company left a message on her answering machine in which the caller apologized.

Comcast officials said it shouldn't have happened.

"We only use the actual customers names on the bill," said Patricia Andrews-Keenan, a Comcast spokeswoman.

Company officials went through the records and identified two people who were involved with the name change and fired them, Andrews-Keenan said. It's unknown why the employees did it.

In another case, Peoples Energy customer Jefferoy Barnes started getting letters addressed to "Jeffery Scrotum Bag Barnes."

"I had no bad words at all. I guess the earliest letter is dated in May and from then on up until now my name has been listed as Jeffery Scrotum Bag Barnes and I have no idea why."

Barnes said he received an apologetic call from a company official. He also has contacted an attorney to determine if he can take legal action.

A Peoples Energy spokeswoman called the letter inexcusable.

Spencer Hearts TV

(George Bluth and Richard Simmons demonstrating the infamous Corn Baller)

Hooray for TV. In anticipation of the upcoming Fall season, Fox has decided to run an episode from the second season of Arrested Development every night at 11 p.m. for two weeks in place of the worse-than-awful Dharma and Greg. If you missed the first week, don't make the same mistake next week!

Favorite quote from last night's episode:

Buster: (holding stuffed animals) These are my awards, Mother. From Army. The seal is for marksmanship, and the gorilla is for sand racing. Now if you'll excuse me, they're putting me in something called Hero Squad.

If that's not exciting enough news, Dutch public TV has started streaming the soap opera Onderweg Naar Morgen! UITEINDELIJK! What more can a brother ask for?

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Family Reunion Fun

Over the weekend I had the opportunity of attending the annual Aagard Family Reunion (my mom's side of the family) . My grandpa and his twin brother, Welby, are both sheep ranchers and the reunion is always held at Welby's ranch.

When you're going to a reunion on a ranch it makes perfect sense to arrive on a four wheeler, which I did. It also makes sense that there are horses around for the kids to ride once they get there.

However, the reunion had some unexpected twists as well. For example, I wasn't expecting a hula hoop competition where I would learn that my mother secretly has wicked hula skills. I was also unaware that one of Welby's sons is a polygamist with two wives and 19 children and that three of his daughters would want to entertain the reunion crowd by tap dancing to "Cotton-Eyed Joe" and three subsequent remixes of "Cotton-Eyed Joe." I guess reunions are all about getting to better know your family.

Monday, August 15, 2005

"Preserving the Integrity of American Idol"

Breathe a sigh of relief, everyone. The Fox network has completed their all-important probe into the Corey Clark/Paula Abdul scandal. Fox says, “This decision to begin an inquiry was motivated by a profound commitment to preserve the integrity of the ’American Idol’ competition.”

Thank you. I have enough stress in my life and I don't exactly know if I could handle also having to worry about the integrity of American Idol. That might have just pushed me right over the edge.

Full Story

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Midvale, Rock City

If you weren't at the Circuit last night, you missed the Johnny Tight Lips debut. Shame on you! The show was pretty rockin'. A full review will be posted on the Manifesto shortly. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

August Consumption


Relient K--MMHMM
Death Cab for Cutie--Plans
Matt Sharp - S/T
Pennywise - The Fuse
Fountains of Wayne - Out of State Plates
Nada Surf - The Weight is a Gift
Bayside - S/T
John Vanderslice - Life and Death of an American Fourtracker


A Long Way Down by Nick Hornby
Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs by Cluck Klosterman

Monday, August 08, 2005

Investors Wanted

Attention investors - Mike Neider has decided to buy the Utah Fun Dome, er, I mean the Salt Lake College, oops, I mean the Salt Lake Pavilion and return it to its original glory. That's right, Mike Neider is planning to return Murray's favorite gang-shootout to the Casey's Dugout, Blackbeard's Cove and Rollertown U.S.A. of yesteryear. That's right, he's going to bring back the 49th Street Galleria.

That's what he told me tonight, anyway, while we were celebrating Ty McHenry's imminent departure to Las Vegas at the run-down bowling alley at the Fun Dome. Mike's got big plans. Unfortunately, as he is waiting for his new career as an insurance salesman to start rollin', he will need some financial backing. So, for all of you nostalgic Murrayites out there, ya'll better back up your pride with some cash so Mike can make his dream come true. Come on, you know you want to.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Johnny Tight Lips vs. Metallica

So, Johnny Tight Lips has its first performance this week, playing with three other local bands (including one called Nocturnal Emissions). Aaron was the one responsible for booking the thing, and at band practice the other day he was filling Danny and me in on the details:

Aaron: There's three other bands and the tickets are $7.
Danny: SEVEN BUCKS!!! Who's the headling band, Metallica?!!!
Aaron: It's all local bands.
Danny: Who would pay seven bucks to hear four bands that suck?

Apparently, the maximum price that Danny would pay for a concert is $7.

Previously, Metallica vs. Oingo Boingo and Metallica Ruins Spencer's GMAT score

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Anyone Up for a Vinegar Bath?

Traci and I spent the weekend in St. George. Believe it or not, even with my always-super-tan complexion, I sometimes get sunburned. After about an hour at the pool my skin was niceley toasted.

Fortunately, I remembered my friend and bandmate Aaron mentioning how he had used vinegar as a sunburn remedy. I think he said, "It takes away the sting and helps prevent peeling." What a commercial.

So Saturday I found myself in the bathtub of the condo, rubbing vinegar all over myself, wondering if it was possible to die of vinegar inhalation, and feeling a strange craving for Lays Salt and Vinegar potato chips.

It actually worked pretty well. I didn't think to put any vinegar on my head, which was also pretty red, so the next night I took another vinegar bath. I thought I had showered off all of the vinegar smell until yesterday at band practice. We were rockin' down in the un-airconditioned basement and I started sweating. Sniff, sniff. Sniff, sniff. What's that vinegar smell? Apparently vinegar penetrates skin pretty good because I think I was sweating vinegar. Chips, anyone?