If so, well, you've come to the right place, my sick, sick pals. Inspired by the report today of odd middle-aged cash cow Susan Boyle's choke-up on heinous TV hen party The View (no, she didn't throw up, dammit, just stopped singing) I have now come across several videos of people who perhaps would not want to choose performing as a career. Or at the very least, refrain from eating several hours before showtime. Stage fright is REAL, PEOPLE, REAL!


Watch just behind the soloist here. That blue sea of choir robes parts pretty darn quickly.

I guess choir is really stress-inducing for kids. This poor girl is summarily hauled off after her emetic event rather heartlessly, I feel.

Now this boy is so hardcore that he keeps his arms folded and just LETS FLY.

HO HO HO...HURL! Watch the back row!

Quite truthfully, if I were onstage wearing no shirt and harlequin pants while playing a keytar very, very badly, puking would be the highlight of my performance.

And just for some fun 'round the other end, a newscaster has gas.

If Susan Boyle ever puked and farted onstage, I hope it would be all over Simon Cowell.


Here's the plan: [Celebrity Name] + verb + modifier/noun.

Here's a photo of me working at home on this with the kids.


Imagine this scenario…say you are a professional baker feeling the holiday spirit, and say in that spirit, you feel like baking a big bunch of Christmas cookies one weekend at your home, using your own equipment and money to buy the ingredients, to give away to your friends and neighbors and a local nursing home and firehouse. You enjoy baking, you like people to enjoy what you make, and it’s nice to do charitable things sometimes. Win-win. Now imagine this…you’ve finished baking and delivering your delicious cookies and when you return home all pleased and such, you are inundated with sad and irate phone calls telling you that a representative from Pillsbury swooped by your neighbors’ kitchens and the nursing home lounge and the firehouse and took every single cookie away, saying you as a professional baker cannot give away your cookies, and Pillsbury has the right to stop everyone from eating them. You are deeply confused, as you work for a small local bakery in no way affiliated with the large food products company, and didn’t even use Pillsbury-brand flour in your cookies. You ask your friends and the angry elders and irate firefighters to contact Pillsbury to express their dismay. The local news outlets pick up the story and it travels quickly.

A couple days later, Pillsbury releases a statement to the press saying they made a mistake in taking your cookies, and they return them to you. You re-deliver them, but you are rather shaken by the whole experience. It was so easy for Pillsbury to do, you think, because they are a huge conglomerate and you are just a modest baker. What if the media hadn’t come to your defense? You would never have been able to legally take on such a big company to get your cookies back – they could easily meander through the court process until you were out of lawyer money, which would be in about a day. Why did they do this in the first place? What’s to stop them from doing it again?  Whose interests were being served by the action in the first place? Was it a “mistake?”

Makes you feel like giving up on baking sometimes.

My broad allegorical tale here refers to this weekend’s kerfuffle starring prolific musician Bradford Cox (Deerhunter/Atlas Sound) and Sony Music Entertainment. In short, Mr. Cox uploaded 4 albums worth of his home-recorded music (Bedroom Database Vol. 1-4) to his own blog for free download. These recordings were not previously-published nor under contract to his record labels, 4AD and Kranky. Sony has no affiliation with either label, nor has any claim to anything produced by Mr. Cox, other than a Bob Dylan cover on Vol. 1, which they didn’t ask be deleted. Without taking that into consideration, someone at Sony decided to contact Mediafire, the company that hosted the upload links, with a cease-and-desist order, and Mediafire killed the links, of course assuming that Sony had the right to make its request.

An honest mistake? Not really. If you as a giant corporation want to protect your interests and the interests of your artists, of course you have the right to do so under the Copyright Act. What you don’t have the right to do is trample on the rights of others in the process and then go, “Whoopsie! Sorry ‘bout that!” If you want to try to catch every instance of filesharing, you have to further make the commitment to do so responsibly and with good intent. Using your clout to threaten businesses with closure, wiping out entire blogs for posting a few MP3s, suing children, and claiming rights over content that clearly doesn’t belong to you makes you seem desperate, unrealistic, and downright creepy. Where does it end? How about making a request FIRST that legitimate offenders stop their actions, and how about making sure you’ve identified a true legal threat before you seriously mess with other people’s businesses and lives?

The music business is never going to return to the old model, and strongarm tactics and privacy violations are no way to reinvent the wheel. I don’t think most artists want their work to become entangled in endless vicious legal nightmares, where they have no say at all about how their record company chooses to “protect” them. At least I hope so, and would further hope that any artist looking to sign with a major label hires one kickass entertainment contract lawyer to make sure he or she can live with restrictions placed upon their creative content and the legal action their songs may someday be involved in. There is a cost to every choice you make.

I hope Bradford Cox returns to his bedroom and bakes us up more delicious music, and that Sony Music takes the time to put on some oven mitts before pilfering goods from the hot oven next time.


It was about 4PM or so, while I was taking a shower, that I got an idea. Showers are good for thinking, because all my tasks in there are so autopilot that my brain is completely freed up. The day I do a shower think and come out with dry hair and still-soapy butt is the day I am officially Too Old To Multitask.  Anyway, there I was all a-thinkin' and a-soapin' when I looked through the glass block to see a very pretty orange sunset beginning. PING! a brain cell went! HEY! it said, you need to take some photos of the kids for your mom because her birthday is coming up and she'll pay you, like, $100 a pop for 'em. NO! it wouldn't be AT ALL OK to accept money from an elderly doting grandma for that, you terrible person! HEY! I know, I know, just kidding, man. OK! you just watch it, there, lady.

This went on for awhile in my head until I realized that HEY! the sun was kind of going down fast, and since all three kids were in the house, it was NOT RAINING, and I had new camera stuff to play with, BEST HURRY UP. I flung myself out of the shower, quickly dried off and dressed, and yelled to the kids to JUSTLISTENAMINUTEGETDRESSEDWEAREGOINGTOTHELAKERIGHTNOW. They all said HUH? and I repeated that three times. Remarkably, it worked.

We live very close to Lake Washington, which is the long lake that separates Seattle from the Eastside suburbs, and it took no more than a couple minutes to walk to a tiny park and a very steep secret pathway covered in wet slippery fall leaves that led to the water. I carried my new equipment like a 4th baby, hesitant with my steps, while MissEight and Mr12 ran ahead. I think CouchTeen was texting. I am a total fan of available light and almost never use flash. When a good light opportunity presents itself, I want to take advantage. What an odd troupe we must have looked like.

So here are a few of the photos I got. It was significantly darker outside than it appears from the photos -- all hail fast glass! I got in some practice with the new gear, the kids got to throw rocks in the lake, and Grandma will get her photos.

I bothered them for awhile, then released them to Home, with CouchTeen leading his siblings. I stayed for a few minutes longer to look at the sunset and bother some ducks.

By the time I trudged up that hill, it was pretty dark and chilly, and the sounds of squirrels skittering in the trees sounded much more strange. Squirrels are not bears, I said in my head, multitasking.


I'm feeling very visual these last few days, no doubt inspired by mah new camera and lenses. The problem is that what I would really love to do right now is take a full month off, holidays be damned (and damn them anyway, really, Black Friday nonsense feh), and do nothing but shootshootshootshoot. Then I'd like another month to do nothing but readreadread, another to writewritewritewrite, and another month to do nothing but make and record music. Then I would like another three months to visit great architectural works, art museums, weird libraries, and vintage instrument shops, then another three months visiting the Top 10 Best Beaches. Then do it all over again.

What I did instead today was more laundry, perused holiday catalogs, talked with a friend about an upcoming party, and pulled some nifty/funny inter-content for you, this time some wonderful old educational/health/war propaganda posters mainly from the mid-20th Century. The look of these posters is so cool -- a mashup of commercial design, fine art, and street art -- and the work from this time remains tremendously influential. So this satistfies my visual lust today, and the content satisfies my humor jones. No going wrong with that: it's free, I don't need to hire a nanny or get a travel visa, and I don't need to rob a bank, just Google Images.

In Russia you need to watch out for jolly guys driving red cars that will eat you if you are in a designated crosswalk.

Who knew you would have to make posters telling people that flies are bad?

I'm imagining Hitler calling out, "SHOTGUN!"

Mmm...War Bones n' War Fat! I thought a "meat dealer" was called a "butcher." Silly me.

Whether you are an American or a Vietnamese propaganda artist, you know the whole pretty-wife-with-the-cute-baby thing is good stuff.

Have you ever seen happier Communists? Why, we have barren apartments featuring construction noise, tank decorating ceremonies, schools filled with fresh flowers and ruddy-cheeked youths, and seriously grateful peasants! Life is good!

I believe this translates to "Watch out where the huskies go and don't you eat that yellow snow."

There seems to be a lot of interpersonal issues going on in Mexico, all of which can be remedied by staring at waterfalls.

Texaco wants to remind you to never stop being vigilant, lest a legally-blind bucktoothed and horse-nostriled Japanese soldier stops by.

I can't really see the purpose of having pearly white teeth when you have no ears, nose, or eyes.

I keep thinking of a needed Black Flag song here: "VD Party."

This may backfire -- what guy doesn't like guns and loose women? They have such nice hats.  I'm sure they are just fun gals.

And finally...Best. Cough/Sneeze. Ever!


I started collecting old magazines a long time ago, probably in my early teens. My mom was a huge garage sale fan, and I would go with her to comb over all the stuff. I'd mainly be looking for records, but it seemed without fail that most would also have stacks of old magazine for sale --LIFE, LOOK, National Geographic, Popular Science -- from about a nickle to fifty cents apiece. I loved them, being a pop culturist, and genuinely enjoyed reading the articles and looking at the cool old photos and ads. Then I would cut the hell out of them with our kitchen scissors to make weird/funny collage art to share with friends or to use to decorate my room, not thinking too much about their future value. It was a lot of fun, and cheap entertainment.

A rarer find would be a "confessions magazine," like True Story. Oh, these are GREAT; they were certainly the media forerunners for the earliest misery purveyors of TV talk show "personal story" like Jerry Springer, Phil Donahue, Oprah, ad nauseum. Good god -- did you know that True Story was first published in 1919 and is still around today? It's had cycles in its raunch/romance content over the years, tied very closely to the bigger political/social trends of each era. The readers of True Story were generally considered to be low-/working-class folks -- you would NEVER admit to buying True Story or have it on your coffee table at home -- but it would be a rare citizen who didn't at least browse through a copy at their local newsstand or grocery store every so often...if no one was looking, that is. People love this stuff.

So today I happened to come across a very beat up 1957 copy of True Story from one of my old garage sale forays. The cover is missing and I have scissored it all over the place, but it still retains quite a bit of content. I smiled, and took some photos for you to enjoy. I think the cuts and tears and yellowing make it all the more artistic and funny. What a world.


Not the food. Not the house. I steam-burnt the CRAP out of my thumb, and OH MAN, it's hurtin' BAD.

I should never be let around hot things. I would be thankful for some MORPHINE right about now.

Typing with my left hand is lame, so the best I can do is give you a few pictures from an otherwise-lovely Thanksgiving Day spent with friends, all taken with my brand-new Canon 60D.

Well, back to the ice pack. Many thanks to our gracious hosts. Happy Thanksgiving!