Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Hobo-Tested, Father-Approved

Okay, so I actually have no idea if Todd and Brian have heard these records, but if they did they would surely agree that they're awesome.

If after Christmas you have a little extra money in your pocket, I would recommend trying to purchase a Senate seat in Illinois. Or investing in Bernard Madoff's latest endeavors.

Barring either of those, though, you could always spend the cash on these four records. These are, in my limited experience, four of the five best albums of the year--the previously discussed Fleet Foxes being the other.

They're exactly the type of records you'd like, if you liked this type of thing. (Arranged in alphabetical order.)

Lie Down In the Light
by Bonnie "Prince" Billy

His best record since I See a Darkness. Mr. Oldham's most country-based record to date finds him crafting songs that celebrate, rather than mourn. The near-perfect counterpoint to the masterpiece that was Darkness, it's basically a big wet sloppy kiss on life's stubbly neck.
Cut: "Easy Does It"
Jams: "For Every Field There's a Mole"; "I'll Be Glad"

by Blitzen Trapper

Not only is this the best album of 2008, it's in the running for the best record of the 1970's. It's warm, playful, and poignant. It's modern, but rooted in much of the music rock and roll fans hold dear. They trust the overwhelming strength of their songs and just let them be. It's not a collection of songs, it's an honest-to-goodness album. And a terrific one, at that.
Cut: "Furr"
"Not Your Lover"; "Lady On the Water"

North Star Deserter
by Vic Chesnutt

Let's get this out of the way: Vic Chesnutt is brilliant--and criminally underrated. He came back this year with two wonderful releases, this being the proper solo release. Where his last two albums have fallen slightly flat, North Star Deserter does the flattening. Joined by a raucous Thee Silver Mt. Zion (and its offshoots), Chesnutt couples his distinctive croon with the orchestra to mesmerizing effect, creating an album full of musical twists, turns, and surprises--which are only fitting considering the nature of Mr. Chesnutt's lyrical content. The album is consistently as rewarding as it is challenging. It gets very quiet at times, and very very loud at many others. But it never ceases being good. Very, very good.
Cut: "You Are Never Alone"
Jams: "Everything I Say"; "Splendid"

by Shearwater

Rook will not make you happy. But luckily, music doesn't need to. This is a haunting, fragile album with songs that are dynamic and gripping. Moving from a near-operatic falsetto to a rough-hewn belting out between verse-and-chorus, or even within them, Jonathan Meiburg gives his songs an emotional heft not heard since Jeff Buckley. The thing is, Shearwater's better.
Cut: "The Snow Leopard"
Jams: "Rooks"; "The Hunter's Star"

Sunday, December 14, 2008

8lb. 6 oz. Baby Jesus x3

We were looking on ebay for Nativity sets that the girls can play with and stumbled across this one:

from the description: "set includes 3 Mary, 2 Joseph, 3 Baby Jesus..."


Care to comment on why one might need 3 various sized Jesi (the plural of Jesus?).

Maybe since there is three Marys you have to have 3 babies? Yet only 2 Josephs?

CLICK HERE for the item page.

UPDATE: Todd's comment deserves first page billing:

obviously there would be only 2 josephs, while there are 3 jesi and 3 marys. 2 of the mary's are decoys, as is one of the josephs. the 3 jesi are rentals loaned to them by the inn-keeper with a guilty conscience. the real baby jesus is safe in a box of one of the wise men. the rag-tag team of biblical misfits is, of course, intended to confuse potential assassins. dude, look in the 8 volume military strategy book set i got you last christmas - 5th book, chapter 34, under the heading "providing extra virgins, messiahs, and a poor sucker getting no action to confuse the enemy." you'll never be secret service with that kind of thinking. the future, please pick on somebody elses manger scene. hell, even pick on somebody's assistant manger if the manger isn't in. but do not question my manger's intention.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Meka: "I want to watch Dr. Bob."
Me: "You mean Dr. Seuss?"
Meka: "Yeah."

Monday, December 8, 2008

Elf vs. Magi

There's a funny dialogue between the Elf on the Shelf (which was given in our family last year) and the Magi over at the Stuff Christians Like Blog if you've got a couple minutes: CLICK HERE

I'm taking the Magi.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The Ferry's ARE Google Maps

View Larger Map

Chris pointed this out quite some time ago but on Google maps street view Cheryl & I are in the picture.


Big brother is, in fact, watching.

The astute may also notice (1) it was back when we still had the Jetta TDI (2) our pear tree was not yet blown down by the Cincinnati Hurricane of '08 (3) our driveway needs to be resealed, well, did need to be resealed, I've since resealed it. Wow.