Monday, July 28, 2008


Since my excuse for not going to my high school reunion fell through (thanks for nothing RB), I have made the leap and shelled out the $40 to RSVP for the, er, fun.

I'm sure now that everyone knows I'm attending, RSVP numbers will spike.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Life as a Naked Kid on an Album Cover

Ever wonder what happen to that kid on the cover of Nirvana's Nevermind? Well, my friend Ty wondered, and found the answer:

Monday, July 21, 2008

Brother, Can You Spare Some Career Change?

I decided it was time to quit my job and become a professional blogger. If that chick Dooce can do it, why can't I? I'm sure I could be a disgruntled Mormon, too, if I tried hard enough.

So I put the ads back up on the site. It's taken me like a month to make $28, so I'm guessing I'll have to keep working at insurance a bit longer. I even checked out "How to Make Money with Your Blog" from the library. It's a bit of a misnomer, because the authors just say "you can't really make money with your blog." Apparently, the real money is writing books about how you make money with your blog.

I am always a man of many side jobs. After two years of writing for Utah Business Magazine, I decided to move on. My latest gig has been writing marketing pieces for multi-level marketing companies. (Dirty, huh?)

I am currently writing a book about the million uses of silver. Silver fixes everything. What's awesome is that it can be used both as a toothpaste and a rectal cream. This will is very helpful when you're trying to pack light for a business trip.

The book also includes an entire section called "Women's Issues," but I won't go into that here. Let me just say that I now know where babies come from.

What's My Age Again?

A few weeks ago I decided I needed a Misfits hoodie. My friend Tim picked one up for me down to the local Hot Topic. Unfortunately, it was either a girl's hoodie or just emo-boy sized. The whole fam went to the mall with me to return it. Once we got there we split up. Traci took Paige to the American Eagle and Curtis, the stroller and I went to the Hot Topic.

You know you're too old for a place like that when you walk in and your first thought is "What's wrong with these aisles? I can't even push the stroller through here." My next thought was that "I'm probably too old if to be in here if I am old enough to be pushing a stroller." My next thought was "I was too old to be here when I was 12."

I looked at the display of Alkaline Trio t-shirts behind the register and then looked down at the Alkaline Trio shirt I was wearing. I guess the real problem is that I have the same music tastes as a 12-year-old.


Tonight I went on splits with the missionaries. After our appointment, I dropped the elder off at the SLCC Institute. The missionaries were hanging out at the singles ward family night.

I haven't been to a singles ward thing in seven years. Somehow nothing has changed. The first person I saw was a 6'3" beanpole guy, wearing jean shorts, no socks and shoes, and dancing around in front of a bunch of sweet spirited girls.

Yep, don't miss that part of being younger. Not even a bit.

Friday, July 18, 2008

whitetrash wednesday part III

6:30 p.m.

Still no takers. The table is back in the house. Traci wins.

white trash update

3:15 p.m.

Traci called and said the table is still on the curb.

I said, "Just wait until 5:00. That's the money hour."

Keep your fingers crossed.

white trash wednesday (on a friday)

We got some new furniture for our living room, which means it's time to get rid of the old, hand-me-down stuff we had in there. Traci's little sister took the couches, but we still have a little table/shelf thing left over.

Rather than haul it off to the D.I., I decided to just stick a "free" sign on it and put it on the curb. Easier for me and a nice treat for somebody who can use it, right?

Traci was (and still is) mortified by my whitetrashedness. She's not happy about it.

I put it out there last night before we went to bed. I told her I'd only keep it out there for one day. So if it's not gone by the end of the day, I'll have to get rid of it myself. And Traci wins. No one wants that.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Record Reviews: Reggie & The Full Effect, Motley Crue

Reggie and the Full Effect
Last Stop: Crappy Town

What began as a side project for Get Up Kids keyboardist James Dewees has turned into quite an impressive catalog. Though Reggie records have never been meant to be taken too seriously--thanks to Dewees' penchant for genre hopping, comedy skits and slew of alter-egos—they are all very lovable.

On "Last Stop: Crappy Town," Dewees continues to mix styles, but the humor is largely absent. The result is a constant battle between sweet power pop and hardcore so screamy that it hurts your voice just to listen to it. Unfortunately, without the usual middle ground, this Reggie album fails to stand out.

Rating: 2 of 4
For Fans of: Cobra Starship, Taking Back Sunday

Motley Crue
Saints of Los Angeles

When your best moments all happened 20 years ago, it makes sense that you'd want to wax a bit nostalgic. "Saints of Los Angeles" finds the '80s bad boys looking back at their career and remembering the good times. "LA girls they payed the rent/While we got drunk on Sunset Strip/And all the cash they made we spent/On tattoos and cigarettes." Add in Nikki Sixx clinically dying from heroin not once, but twice, and you've basically got the whole story of the band.

Though the album has plenty of filler, there are a few songs to get the testosterone going, namely "Face Down in the Dirt" and "MF of the Year." After all these years, Vince Neil still has a strong set of pipes, Mick Mars can still shred (despite actually being a walking ghost), Nikki Sixx holds down the low end and the irrepressible Tommy Lee adds just enough cowbell.

Saints of Los Angeles [MP3] (Via GloriousNoise)

Rating:2.5 of 4
For Fans of: Poison, Sixx: A.M.

You can find my reviews and band interviews each week at IN Utah This Week.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Heard It on the Internet: Does It Offend You, Yeah?

MTV does still show 11 p.m. on Sunday night...for one hour...with commercials. MTV's Subterranean is the new incarnation of 120 Minutes, focusing mostly on indie and experimental stuff.

Every once in a while I'll find something I like. Does It Offend You, Yeah? is a pretty lousy name for a band, but makes some entertaining, dancey, vocoder fun. I checked out the album this morning. Not half bad.

Dawn of the Dead
We are Rockstars [MP3]

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

floyd the barber

I'm now so cheap that I cut my own hair. Sometimes I use a mirror for the back, sometimes not. Last week I asked Traci if she'd start cutting it for me. She said, "I can't cut hair."

Two days later, Paige came downstairs after Traci gave her a bath. I noticed something about her hair.

"Traci, what happened to Paige's hair?"

"I cut it. What's wrong?"

"It's like three inches shorter on one side than the other."

[Traci inspects her work.] "Well, she was sitting on the floor, looking up at the TV while I cut it."

Paige won't even let us touch her hair, let alone cut it. We've had to be very sneaky when cutting it lately. Usually my mom does it while Paige is playing in her backyard. ("Hey Paige, what's that over there?" Snip, snip.) This time, Traci took the task upon herself.

Traci was able to solve the length discrepancy and Paige is now cuter than ever.

Alkaline Trio Agony & Irony

Alkaline Trio
Agony & Irony
Unfortunately being a bitter, emotional wreck only stays interesting for so long. Alkaline Trio was wise to accept that they couldn't make entrails-on-sleeve punk rock forever. In recent years they've settled for a slower, darker sound that, though less exciting, is more convincing as they grow older.

Their first major label release feels much like their last two independent efforts. The songs are slickly polished, heavily produced and filled with the usual spooky imagery. It seems a bit formulaic, but works nevertheless. Strong tracks like "Calling All Skeletons," "In Vein," and "Help Me" will push t-shirts sales at Hot Topic while still giving long-time fans enough reason to remain loyal.

If you're missing the Alkaline Trio of yesteryear, 2007's compilation "Remains" is actually the band's best release in years.

Rating: 3 of 4
For Fans of: My Chemical Romance, The Lawrence Arms

Alkaline Trio - "Help Me"

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Who's the Real Tromboner?

I did an interview with ska punk veterans Less Than Jake yesterday. I've never really actively listened to the band, but I'm familiar enough with their stuff and throughout the years I've seen them play a few times. I saw them open up for Blink 182 back in the Dude Ranch days and I'm sure I've seen them at Warped Tour. I was looking forward to talking to them.

Their publicist told me I'd be doing a phone interview with Buddy the trombone player. (My keyboarding friend Brian says the only person in the band less interesting in a band than a horn player is the keyboardist.) Buddy was cool, but I couldn't help feeling like an idiot.

I always try to do my homework before I do an interview, but this time I didn't even have a chance to listen to their new album before talking to the band. It came back to bite me.

ME: So, tell me about the new record...
BUDDY: What do you want to know?
ME: Uh, well I haven't had a chance to listen to it yet, but...
BUDDY: You haven't listened to it yet? How are we supposed to talk about it if you haven't listened to it?

I also tried talk to him about the band starting their own label. Their drummer Vinnie founded Fueled By Ramen (Fall Out Boy's original label), so I asked a question about that as well. But I got mixed up on the names. And what I thought was an intelligent question was all wrong.

ME: Did you ever considered just putting the record out on Fueled By Ramen?
BUDDY: Why would we put a record out on Fueled by Ramen? We started our own label.
ME: I know, but Roger (stutter, stutter) and Fueled by Ramen (stammer) and you know...
BUDDY: He hasn't worked there in like three years.

So it was a struggle. I'm sure Buddy thought I was an idiot. If you are looking for an uncomfortable 13 minutes, here you go:

Less Than Jake Interview [WMA]

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

A Sheep, A Goat and A Motorbicycle

Summer time means weekends at Grandpa's sheep ranch. It's crazy that it's already Paige's third season up there. She was excited to go because we promised she would see five of her favorite things - a sheep, a cow, a horse, a goat and a tractor.

Time at the ranch basically equals eating lots of food and riding around on the four wheelers. At six months she would sit on the four wheeler with me in indifference. At a year-and-a-half she was scared to death of the thing. This year she started out scared, but once she took her first ride, she never wanted to get back off.

She calls it the "motor bicycle" and throughout each ride she'd periodically say to me, "It's fun play motor bicycle." Before we'd get on she'd always make sure to put on her riding hat and glasses (which are strangely familiar to her "it's fun play swimming pool" hat and glasses).

Traci took this photo of us. Paige saw it about one minute later, while she was still in sight of the actual ATV. "Motor bicycle!" she screamed in delight, as though she had seen an old friend.

Paige inherited her father's keen sense of fashion.