Friday, January 30, 2009

Now throats'll be slashed and flags'll unfurl

They say that a picture is worth a thousand words. I was going through some old notes from a conservation biology class, and found a couple of examples that demonstrate the saying perfectly. Well, almost perfectly.


Example 1: The Cichlids
One day in class we had a prolonged discussion on the high levels of diversity of cichlid fishes in the Rift Lakes that have formed in eastern Africa. These fish represent a textbook example of an explosive radiation. There are estimates of nearly 1000 species of cichlids in these rift lakes, even though the rift lakes are relatively young in geologic time. The lakes formed as a result of plate tectonics because the plate that eastern Africa sits on is slowly pulling away from the rest of the continent. This has resulted in the formation of a deep valley that has filled up with water in some parts. Hence, any organisms living within these lakes had to get there within a relatively recent time frame, and the sheer number of species found there suggest that they must have evolved at an accelerated rate.

While the fish community represents a large amount of genetic diversity, the professor made the comment about how all the diversity might eventually be wiped out if the two plates separated completely. This would be because the rift valley would eventually fill up with sea water, which would obviously kill off any freshwater species. So it's a conundrum. While this system represents a classic example of rapid evolution (side note: there are fish so specialized in these lakes that they only eat the eyeballs or scales of other cichlids), it may also only be a blip on the screen of evolutionary time. That's if all these species eventually become extinct.

I'm not doing the conversation justice here, but I remember it as clearly as the day I sat in the classroom. However, here are the only notes I took during that conversation:





The second picture is the national flag for the country that will be sitting on the shoreline of the newly developed seaway: Dead Cichlid Nation*.



Example 2: Bees
We had another discussion about how we need to be mindful of changing environmental conditions when thinking about conservation and how it pertains to plant and animal distributions. Just because an organism occurs somewhere does not mean that it was always there, just like absence of an organism from a certain area doesn't guarantee that it's never occurred there. Anyone familiar with the fossil record knows that. This could be important when planning reserves. If possible, you want to conserve enough of an area that things can shift around if they need to. That usually isn't possible because of the financial obligations and politics, but it would be ideal.

The example our professor gave us when trying to illustrate this point was the continent of Antarctica. Today it is obviously covered with ice, but that hasn't always been the case. He mentioned a fairly recent study that talked about how Antarctica was once a much warmer place, and showed that bees migrated from Africa to South America across Antarctica (more recently than when all three continents were joined together to make up Gondwana).

Here are my notes from that discussion:



That would be the flag** for Frozen Bumblebee Nation.








*Incidentally, Dead Cichlid Nation would be one of George W. Bush's favorite countries because of the mass extinction rate associated with its formation - so glad that guy's not our president anymore.

**One of my lab mates looked at my notes while I was drawing these flags, and she interrupted the class by laughing too loud. The professor was not as amused. That may have been the reason why he started disliking me. I'm not sure about this.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

There is blood in all the things you say, I won't hate you if you go away

Last weekend Tortellini's boyfriend came to town for a visit. It was the first time she got to see him since they moved here last summer, so she was very excited.

Mr M, on the other hand, was not. It seems that he doesn't like to have to interact with anyone he's not familiar with, which is basically everyone outside of my, or my ex's family.

About an hour or so before [Boyfriend] was supposed to get to their house, Mr M held up a toothpick then looked at Tortellini and said, "If [Boyfriend] tries talkin' to me, I'm goin' to poke him to death with this."

Looks like I don't have to be the dad sitting on the couch cleaning his gun* for intimidation purposes. Mr M's got it covered for me.








*Which is a good thing because I'd need to go out and buy a shotgun.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

And the heart beats in its cage

Friend: You still at the office?

Me: Yeah. I probably will be until around 7 tonight. Unless I decide to go to the gym. I probably should do the latter. Work off this flab that seems to want to accumulate on various parts of my body.

Friend: The old man is starting to catch up huh?

Me: Catch up? I think he's taken over. Completely.

Friend: Welcome to the old man club my brotha!!!

Me: I don't want to be in the old man club. That means I'll have to start hanging out in locker rooms and talking to people while I'm naked*. Isn't that what all old men do?







*This idea fresh in my mind after reading 2 Dollar Productions the other day.

La plus jeune avait l'pied l├ęger

Friday night I watched 'Son of Rambow' with my kids. It didn't live up to its hype, but the kids liked it. One of the sub-plots of the movie involves a French exchange student. The first time this kid showed up on screen elicited this response from Mr M.

Mr M: That is so cool. I want to dress like that kid when I'm older.

That kid:





I've always told my kids I'd love them the same whether they're gay or straight. Mr M might be trying to find out if I mean it.

Monday, January 26, 2009

What's the name of this song? Explosivo!

I was reminded of this story last night, and even though it's not my story to tell, I'm going to tell it anyway. I have no shame, and since names are left out, I don't feel bad about telling embarrassing stories about various people I know.

A few years ago, a guy left town to spend the holidays with his girlfriend's family. They spent the night at her brother's house, and apparently something he had eaten that day didn't agree with him. He awoke in the middle of the night with a gurgling in his stomach, and he knew it was time to go to the bathroom. So, he hurried and sat on the toilet just in time for the diarrhea to hit. He sat there until he was sure he was finished, and got up to start washing his hands when suddenly he felt the urge to vomit. So he hit his knees and hugged the toilet bowl. Unfortunately for him, the act of vomiting contracted his core muscles in such a way that we squirted more diarrhea all over the bathroom wall and the back of his legs.

He did his best to clean up the floor and wall, then jumped into the shower. While showering he had another spurt from the back end and sprayed the shower tiles. Luckily, that just washed on down the drain. He eventually got everything cleaned up and crawled back into bed. Before going back to sleep he mentioned to his girlfriend that they may need to check again in the morning to make sure he got everything.

I now greet this guy with a two handed salute that points out from the mouth with one hand, and the butt with the other hand. To many it probably looks like some juvenile variation of Saturday Night Fever, but anyone who knows the story realizes it's to symbolize the bidirectional fountain that was him on that night.

Now you know where I came up with one of my rules to live by: Always choose to clean up vomit over cleaning up diarrhea if you're forced to make such a decision.

Friday, January 23, 2009

I've got nothing to hide wish I wasn't so shy

Interview with A. Boxer*.

1. You are given the chance to visit one city for three days, all expenses paid. Where would you go? What would you do?

This is a tough one because there are a lot of cities I'd like to visit, but if all expenses are paid, I'm going to a more distant one (sorry Vancouver, BC). I've always wanted to visit Europe, although even that gets tough to decide between all the cool cities there, but, you've got to start somewhere, right? Maybe I could get lucky and somehow parlay the all expenses paid gig into multiple trips, but for starters I'd choose Athens, Greece. I became interested in Greek mythology in second grade, and took a class on that to satisfy my g.e. credits for arts and letters when working on my bachelor's degree. I think it'd be really cool to go around the city and tour the ancient ruins, just to see some of the places that I've learned so much about. Plus, the climate there is supposed to be awesome, right?


2. After receiving your PhD, you are offered a high paying job for a Company that is all about profit (and not much else) or a teaching position at a prestigious University. What would you pick? Why?

Assuming that the discrepancy in salaries is not too high (probably a bad assumption since industry always pays better than academia), I'd go with the position at a university. This is something I've thought about, and I'm not sure I'd be completely satisfied if I was doing someone else's research. There's always some degree of doing what somebody with money wants you to do, but I'd prefer to have a bigger say in what questions I'm answering, what data are generated and what happens with the results. That said, I'm also not entirely sure I'm cut out for the high stress, publish-or-perish atmosphere of a prestigious university. I'm not a very good writer, and have yet to secure any significant amount of funding for my research (the biggest "grant" I've received was $1000). What I'm trying to say is that I'd take the university job, but whether I'd get tenure might be a completely different story.


3. Name the best "Break Up" song.

There are a lot of good "break up songs" out there, so I'm just going to go with the first one that popped into my head: My Girlfriend's Best Friend by The Sun (click to download). The lyrics are harsh, which is always helpful when you're trying to hate someone.

You're looking tired
Like you tried to kill yourself again
You'll probably be strung out tonight
And my heart is broken
So I'm no good in bed
Have to find yourself another friend

Chorus
I don't want to so I
Think that I'd be better off askin'
And I wanted me to [unintelligible]
At the part of attraction
You're not my girlfriend you're just
Some fuckin' distraction
That I never wanted to go bad

To me this is crazy
The whole wide world is at it again
Showing me how it feels good to bleed
And you think it's nonsense
That I made it up in my head
You're probably right but you're goin' instead

(chorus)

Roll it over in your head
Hit you twice and now you're dead
I won't ever rot again
I think I might go to bed
I just don't think it's your time yeah
Dear boy dear boy
I've been balled down by some
of the best
I'm just psycho with a little [unintelligible]
In my side
In my time

(chorus)



4. You're in front of the judges on American Idol, what song would you sing?

I'd never be in front of the judges on American Idol because a) American Idol sucks, b) I'm too old to be the next manufactured pop star/one hit wonder, and c) I have absolutely no musical ability. If you put a gun to my mom's head and told me you'd pull the trigger unless I made it to Hollywood, I'd contemplate letting her die. (Just kidding Mom, I love you!) Since American Idol try-outs are all about people regurgitating popular songs, a lot of what I like wouldn't be well known enough for people to recognize it. Since making it to Hollywood on that show also seems to be all about having a good voice, it'd have to be a well known song where you could showcase that. I'd probably sing Tiny Dancer.


5. Describe the perfect first date.

I hate first dates. So my real answer is that the perfect first date is a second date. However, since you can't exactly skip over the first date, I'll say that a nice dinner and good conversation would suffice. A kiss at the end of the evening would also be nice, but I'm never brave enough to go for it.







*Lame pun, I know.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Now it cuts like a knife but it feels so right

Another offensive t-shirt idea coming to you from Native Minnow*:








*Two people who deserve partial credit whether they want it or not: One, whoever designed the t-shirt that reads 'Does this condom make me look fat?', and two, Dan Murphy for coining the term 'rapey'.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

What's mistaken for closeness is just a case of mitosis

Once again, it's time to share the highlights from my TA evaluations from last semester. As always, these are taken verbatim from the evaluations themselves.

The Lab
What was your least favorite exercise? Why?
- The worm. We had to kill it.
- The clam dissection, I'm not a fan of sea life, I would have preferred a plastic model.
- The guppies, they were racist.

What is the major weakness of [the lab]?
- Looking at slides SUCK!!

What is the major strength of [the lab]?
- Cutting things open ROCK!!



The Lab Instructor
What were his/her strong points?
- Superhuman strength and stopping gang violence*.
- Unbelievably strong and the ability to obtain vast amounts of knowledge.

How could he/she improve?
- Lose the earring.
- Not sure. Hurry up and finish his doctorate so he can have his own lecture. He's getting up there :)
- I suggest giving students time to copy notes on board should be a different time than when you are explaining lab because it's hard to listen to someone while copying stuff off board**.
- Drawing pigs on casts.
- Learning how to fly! (There can only be one!)






*Native Minnow: Putting an end to gang violence since 2008.

**Because the two and a half hours they have in lab after I finish talking isn't enough time for them to copy stuff down.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Together we'll be runnin' somewhere new

In honor of the inauguration today, I'll direct your attention to this site where you can make an Obamicon of yourself.

Go on. All the cool kids are doing it.

Here are a few that I made while trying to take my mind off the fact that the Eagles were getting their asses handed to them in the NFC Championship game.









Here are some others that I didn't make, but I think are hilarious so I stole them to post here anyway:






Saturday, January 17, 2009

Fashion zombies don't walk this world alone

The year was 2032. Zed awoke from an uneasy sleep filled with dreams of sirens, war and disease pandemics. All his nights were like this, but he wasn't going to complain. Sleep was sleep. Even sleep filled with nightmares was better than none. Or so he told himself.

Zed walked downstairs to put on a pot of coffee. He wasn't going to drink it. He never drank it. But it was the routine that was important. It helped retain some sense of normalcy. As the coffee percolated into the pot, Zed looked out the kitchen window. There it was. Grey ash falling from the sky. Still falling. He wondered if it would ever stop. He didn't think it would.

Zed sighed. He could still remember the time when the sky was blue. When dreams like the ones he had nightly were just dreams and not memories coming back to haunt him. It had only been a year since the human race turned against itself, but it seemed like a lifetime ago. He knew that many of the innocent casualties deserved to live again, but he wondered how many of them would take the chance if they had to do it his way. If they had to be a zombie.

Zed was a unique zombie to say the least. After all, most zombies didn't sleep. Or dream. Or sigh wistfully at the sight of falling ash. Most zombies just roamed the earth in a never-ending search for brains. But unlike them, Zed didn't like his situation. Other zombies seemed to be content in their new role, but Zed yearned for something more. Zed had a longing in his heart. Zed searched for love. And brains. But mostly love.

Zed's problem was complicated. Every time he'd meet a nice zombie girl, the craving would override everything else and she'd leave after a few days. Every time he'd meet a nice human girl, she'd run away screaming. He couldn't blame them. It was a matter of self-preservation. It was hard for Zed to make a good first-impression, with the limp and the drooling and all. And as they say, you never get a second chance.

One time he had been able to convince a human girl to look past his outer surface and realize that there was more to him than just being a zombie. And she was attractive. Man was she attractive. That was shortly after his transformation. Strangely enough the girl seemed interested in him too, she was just hesitant because she didn't know what her family would think. Ironically, the first night she fell asleep watching movies on his couch, Zed's roommate ate her brains. Zed now lived alone.

Zed had not left his house for days. He decided that the only thing worse than being a zombie was being a zombie with cabin fever, so he set out for the park. It was dangerous to do so with the death squads that patrolled the streets with flame throwers in an attempt to rid the city of its zombie problem, but he needed the fresh air.

Zed chuckled briefly at the thought of a zombie needing fresh air. Other zombies would ridicule him for having such thoughts. Come to think of it, other zombies would ridicule him for thinking of anything other than brains, but Zed couldn't help it. He was who he was.

Zed took his finger and wrote his name in the ash on a park bench. He drew a heart around it, then brushed all the ash off the bench so he could sit down. He sat. And stared at his feet. And thought. He thought about his family. His sisters. He couldn't understand why they had all died, but he was left to live this hellish existence. Being a zombie in love with the idea of being in love was a heavy burden. It was certainly taking a toll on him, and he wasn't sure if he could take it much longer.

Zed's thoughts were interrupted by a pair of white sneakers at the top of his field of view. Well, they were as white as anything could be with all the ash that permeated the air.

Zed looked up and saw the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. At least he thought she was. Sometimes it was hard to remember details from the life before. This was too good to be true. Zed blinked and rubbed his eyes. The woman laughed a musical laugh and said, "You're not imagining me. Mind if I sit?"

Zed brushed more ash off the bench and motioned for her to have a seat.

"What's your name?"

"Zed. Yours?"

"Leslie. I haven't seen you around here lately."

"You've seen me before?"

"Yes. But I've never been able to work up the nerve to come talk to you."

"Understandable." Zed said sheepishly, then added, "Zombie" as he motioned to himself.

"You know, you're kind of cute. For a zombie." She winked.

Zed was a shy zombie, so just smiled and looked away from her face. As he did so, he saw movement from the corner of his eye. He looked around the park and saw men approaching from all directions. Zed ran, but it was too late, the men were too close. "How could I have been so careless?" he thought as the flames came toward him from all directions.

He heard that musical laugh again. "That one was almost too easy," he heard Leslie say. "Normally they run or try to attack when they see me."

The captain of the death squad kissed her and said, "Just keep up the good work. You know I don't like having you doing this sometimes, but that's one less zombie we need to worry about now."

"Really, I don't mind. It's fun," she laughed.

"If I was destined to die alone, I'd rather it be now than later," thought Zed as he burned.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

This is where the party ends, I can't stand here listening to you and your racist friend

Overheard the other day:

Guy: What do you want to eat?

Girl: I want to go somewhere I can get chink food.

Guy: Did you just say chink food?

Girl: I did.

Guy: You can't call it that.

Girl: I can if there aren't any chinks around.


Las Vegas: Home to some of the classiest people you'll ever meet.

Call me on your way back home

Ryan Adams is quitting music, and that makes me sad.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Tell me that you've got everything you want and your bird can sing

Do you ever wonder about what random thoughts might enter Native Minnow's head throughout the day but never make it into a blog post?

Well, now you're in luck. I'm the latest of the sheep to jump onto the Twitter bandwagon. Might I direct your attention to the sidebar to the newest feature added to The Shallows? Just scroll down below the 'about me' section. Or, you can follow me here.

Tweet me bitches!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Girl why not take out the trash and once you get him out tell him not to come back again

Me (to Tortellini): And to think, your mom had all of this.
[said while motioning to myself with my hands]

Togers: And she threw it all away.

Tortellini: Because it was garbage.

Why they wanna see my spine, Mommy?

Chad Carter is a greedy bastard!


Monday, January 12, 2009

I wonder if you'll love me tonight

Finally! A fortune cookie worth the paper it's printed on.



I guess I need to get home early so I can change the sheets.

All the kids are staying fat

When you're getting dressed in your bedroom, and your car in the garage starts honking because the panic button on the keychain got pressed accidentally when you bent over to tie your shoes, it might be time to start working out.

If that happens repeatedly, it's time to accept the fact that you are fat and buy some looser fitting jeans.

I need to buy some looser fitting jeans.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Been caught stealin' once when I was five

Let me tell you a little story about how to get someone to buy a shirt from you if you work in retail. Hey, it worked for the store I went to yesterday.

I had an item to return to a certain outdoors store. I made the exchange, but then they told me about the "super clearance sale" they were having. Items that were already marked down were now fifty percent off their sale prices. How could I not start looking around at that point?

There was a lot of good stuff, but I decided that I didn't really need any of it and that I was just shopping for the deal, and not out of necessity. I did find a shirt I liked, but wasn't sure if it fit me well enough to buy.

Around that time, a friend called to see if I wanted to have lunch with him. I told him where I was, and we agreed to meet at a nearby restaurant. I told my friend about the sale over lunch, and about the shirt that I wasn't sure about. He said he was going back over there, so if I wanted a second opinion we could go back over after lunch. So, we did.

Once in the store, I grabbed the shirt and went into the dressing room to try it on. I left the dressing room to get my friend's opinion on the shirt, and when I went back, my shirt and sunglasses were gone. I'd seen a store employee go into the dressing room, but couldn't find him after my stuff went missing. It took me five minutes to get someone's attention, and eventually talked to someone who went to check the lost and found. My sunglasses were there, but my t-shirt wasn't. Since I had nothing to change back into, I decided to buy the shirt I'd tried on.

It turned out that someone had placed my shirt into the re-stock pile. You know, because a five year old t-shirt looks like something you could sell. They did find it eventually, so everything ended up okay, short of a brief moment of panic that I was going to have to replace my sunglasses and about 30 minutes of my life that I'll never get back.

So, if you're working in retail, especially on commission in a clothing store, you may want to think about stealing clothes out of the dressing rooms so your patrons will be forced to purchase the ones they're trying on. The boost in your paycheck might help you get through these tough economic times. Just a thought.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Love me now while we're alive, it's the best thing we can do

Here's a song reminding you to live it up this weekend, because you never know when the Devil's going to come around to collect his debt. Enjoy!

**EDIT**
The mp3 player isn't working properly, so I'll just post the link for the download instead if you're interested in hearing the studio version.
**End Edit**

Great Big Sea - Straight To Hell
Love me now while we're alive
It's the best thing we can do
We'll have no time upon cloud nine
So heaven on earth'll have to do
I can sing like a bird and dance like a demon
And I do it all so well
'Cause I made a deal with the Devil and when I die
I'm going straight to Hell

Standing at the crossroads
He offered wine, women and song
Riches, fame and fortune in my hands from that day on
I was granted there and then a life of rock and roll
And it seemed like such a bargain
For just one eternal soul
I know I'll curse this damn decision
And I'll regret it 'til the moment I fall
But I'll be makin' the most of a bad situation
Until my number's called

Love me now while we're alive
It's the best thing we can do
We'll have no time upon cloud nine
Heaven on earth'll have to do
I can sing like a bird and dance like a demon
and I do it all so well
'Cause I made a deal with the devil
and when I die I'm goin' straight to Hell
Oh yeah, I'm goin' straight to Hell

There's times I swear I've come out on top
In this ill conceived contract
And there's nights I say
"It's a small price to pay for the life and times I've had"
And I think "Here's to the gents and ladies
And all the foolish times we spent"
They cost me afterlife in paradise
And they were worth every single cent
So have a dance with the walking damned
Before my time is done
'Cause a deal is a deal
And I don't expect fire and brimstone will be much fun

Love me now while we're alive
It's the best thing we can do
We'll have no time upon cloud nine
Heaven on earth'll have to do
I can sing like a bird and dance like a demon
And I do it all so well
'Cause I made a deal with the devil and when I die
I'm goin' straight to Hell
Oh yeah, I'm going straight to Hell

I said straight to Hell
Go to Hell

I have every expectation
That my final prayer will go unheard
And my veiled deathbed confession
Will not move the Mighty Lord
And I'm sure that I'll be sorry
When He slams St. Peter's gate
But I'll dive right into damnation with a smile across my face.

If you love me now while we're alive
It's the best thing we can do
We'll have no time upon cloud nine
Heaven on earth'll have to do
I can sing like a bird and dance like a demon
And I do it all so well
'Cause I made a deal with the devil and when I die
I'm goin' straight to Hell
I made a deal with the devil and when I die
I'm goin' straight to Hell
Oh yeah
I'm goin' straight to Hell
Oh yeah
I'm goin' straight to Hell



Or if you'd rather see a live version:

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Drink, drink this town is so great, drink, drink 'cause it's never too late

Since I'm probably one of the only people in the world who doesn't drink yet still frequents bars, a lot of people ask why I don't drink. That's understandable, but I've decided that I'm going to start making up reasons that'll make the person who's asking feel uncomfortable. (Similar to The Joker explaining how he got the scars on his face in The Dark Knight.)

Here are the ones I've come up with so far:

- I'm a recovering meth addict, and alchol was my companion drug, so I can't get drunk without wanting to get high.

- I haven't touched alcohol since my dad came home drunk and blasted my mom with a twelve gauge shotgun.

- The last time I got drunk was when the Priest took me into his chambers and plied me with a bottle of wine, and I don't remember anything that happened between then and the next morning when I woke up with a sore butt.

- I learned my lesson after I was driving drunk one day and t-boned a van full of pre-school kids who were on their way to the dinosaur museum, killing all but one of them in a fiery explosion and leaving the lone survivor horribly disfigured from the third degree burns that covered 80% of his body.


So, take a vote, or offer up a new explanation of your own. Whichever gets the most votes will be the reason I give the next time I get asked the question.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

I've been roamin' around always lookin' down on all I see

Somebody recently forwarded me an Amber Alert email for a girl who'd gone missing from somewhere in the mid-west. I didn't pass it on. Does anybody read those anyway? Would you actually remember the face of someone you saw there? Of all the missing kids' pictures that you see, do you really expect to be able to pick one of those faces out of a crowd should you encounter them? Same goes for missing people on milk containers. There are so many of them these days that I don't even look at them anymore. Isn't that something that might have been effective when they first started doing it, but has sort of lost it's ability to do what it's intended to do? Or am I just a dick?

Sunday, January 04, 2009

A boy who's so drunk he doesn't talk

Friday night I went with some friends to a gay bar.

It was my first time being in such an establishment.

I made it through the night without anyone hitting on me.

I don't know whether I should be relieved, or if I should feel rejected.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

A broke back wreck with a ball and chain

A girl I know recently had to speak at a wedding for which she was the maid of honor. She still hadn't figured out what she was going to say the night before the wedding, and asked me for some tips. I gave her a few, and have decided to list them here as well. You know, in case any of you know someone who is preparing to tie the knot.

- You probably shouldn't bring up the long string of ex-girlfriends that have been left behind by the groom, or the many ex-boyfriends the bride's had.

- It's not proper to talk about how you never thought the bride would get married because of how psychotic she acts.

- Don't mention the fact that you saw the bride leaving a pay-by-the-hour motel room with the best man last week.

- Wedding guests don't need to hear about the time when the bride had a judge issue a restraining order for the groom's father.

- The groom's hatred for the bride's mother should remain unspoken on this day.

- Avoid bringing up the time when the bride/groom hit on you at a holiday party.

- No mention of the groom's methamphetamine addiction should be made. Nor that of his fondness for prostitutes.

- Under absolutely no circumstances will a joke about STDs be successful.

- If you see the groom's other wife and children in the audience, don't single them out. They didn't come to be embarrassed.



You're welcome!

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Now and then you give me the feelin' I'm not a man I'm a magazine

The year 2008 was a good one for music. Not only were a lot of good albums released, I was also introduced to a whole bunch of new bands, both ones that were new, and those who have been around for a while but I'd never listened to. My itunes library has tripled since last New Year's Day, so my list of favorite albums for 2008 probably isn't as well thought out as it should be.

There have been plenty of acclaimed albums released in 2008 that won't be on my list because I haven't given them enough listening time (e.g., Shearwater - Rooks; Frightened Rabbit - The Midnight Organ Fight). There are good albums from some of my favorite older bands that won't make it because I simply liked the others more for whatever reason (e.g., Ben Folds - Way To Normal; Radiohead - In Rainbows; Nine Inch Nails - The Slip; Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks - Real Emotional Trash; The Dandy Warhols - Earth To The Dandy Warhols). Then there are the ones that are good, but there just wasn't enough room to include them on a top ten list (e.g., Blitzen Trapper - Furr; Blind Pilot - 3 Rounds And A Sound; The Weepies - Hideaway).

Without further ado, here's the list.

Native Minnow's Top Albums of 2008
10. Spiritualized - Songs in A & E
9. Vampire Weekend - Vampire Weekend
8. Gus Black - Today is not the Day . . .
7. Fleet Foxes - Fleet Foxes
6. Jim White - Transnormal Skiparoo
5. Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Ago
4. The Broken West - Now or Heaven
3. Old 97's - Blame it on Gravity
2. Kings of Leon - Only by the Night
1. Nada Surf - Lucky



I've also posted a New Year's present for those who are interested. It's a free download of some of my favorite songs from 2008. Enjoy!