Category Archives: Guest Posts

My First Vlog (Because I’ve Been Really Lazy About Blogging!)

So below is my first vlog (awkward word!) video.  The quality is not good because I just used my computer’s camera.  I probably should have saved myself some trouble and just uploaded a voice post, but I did want people to be able to see me since I have family and friends in faraway lands like Unadilla and Rochester that don’t see me very often.  Also, you should know that I’m a couple of glasses of wine into this post, so there may be a few typos that I didn’t catch.  (The video was pre-wine Stine.)  I’m really going to make an effort to post more often about what’s going on in my life here in Durham.

I was serious about the cat anxiety thing.  I know nothing about it, so inform me!  Also, I may end up doing the haul video regardless.  It looks like so much fun.  Cue Daniel making fun of me relentlessly.  I know they’re silly but they look fun to film.  I might wait to do it until I do a serious shopping trip at Old Navy and Forever 21 on Monday or Tuesday.  We will see if that actually materializes.

I just want to point out that I really did enjoy going to see Titanic in theaters.  It’s a stupid movie.  The script is ridiculous.  I hate what James Cameron does to movies (and by that, I mean ruin them).  But, it’s a pretty good story and I happen to really like Kate Winslet.  To me, it was worth it for free dollars.


Dorking Out: A Very Special Guest Post By Daniel

So you may have heard that Christine and I took a special emergency trip down to Unadilla yesterday on account of that fact that her grandmother found a box of “Golden Age” Comics in a closet.  Now you probably know this by now, but I am a huge Huge HUGE comic book geek.  I even have my own (very infrequently updated) blog about them.  Needless to say I had a serious dork attack and may or may not have (read: most certainly did) peed my pants out of excitement.  At 8 P.M., after frantically packing comic book bags and boards, The Overstreet Comic Book Price Guide, and some adult diapers, we were off.  Three and half hours later we arrived to find Christine’s mother and sister thumbing through the comics as though they were a stack of three month-old People Magazine’s at the dentist’s office.  Doing my best to maintain my composure I uttered something along the lines of “Get your filthy hands off of those!  Do you realize what you are holding!?!” or something to that effect…or maybe I just wet myself again…I really don’t remember.  It was late, I was tired, and very VERY excited.

Sitting down at the kitchen table  with a small stack of the issues that Christine’s grandmother really wants to sell, I felt my body tense as I came to the realization that these would be the oldest comics that I have ever held in my hands.  Brow moist with nervous sweat, hands aquiver, I began to inspect the first comic, a little title called “Daredevil #1“.  Did you click that link?  Good.  Do you recognize that man on the front?  The swarthy looking one with the emo hair and the tiny mustache.  Yeah, that’s Adolf Hitler getting punched in the face.  Now, I can’t overstate how incredibly valuable “Golden Age” Comics featuring Hitler are because the confines of written language dictate that I use real words that you will understand, but take my word when I say they are extremely valuable.  For instance, this very same issue graded in Near Mint condition (which, mind you, would be very unlikely considering the comic is 70 years old) can fetch over $20,000.  Aw dammit, I just peed again.

I actually held this in my hands. How cool is that!?

This isn’t to say that Christine’s grandma’s copy is worth that much.  All things considered, it was in very nice condition, the colors are vivid, the paper is relatively white and odorless, there aren’t too many nicks and rips.  In fact, the only major defect is that the cover of the issue was detached from the staples, though I have seen coverless copies of the same issue selling for $600.  And while that certainly is the biggest highlight insofar as the value of these books are concerned, there were still several other really cool issues.  She has a copy of “Detective Comics #96”!  To put that in perspective Batman appeared in “Detective Comics #27”, putting #96 around 1943.  This issues was in incredible condition barring the slight curling on the right side from being stored in a box in a closet for at least the last 30 some-odd years.  According to The Overstreet, Alfred’s last name is revealed to be “Beagle” in this issue; his name, of course, would later be changed to “Pennyworth” but it is an interesting tidbit.

That's my thumb in the corner to flatten it out.

She also has a copy of “Captain America #38”, complete with racist cover and all.  This issue was one of the coolest to me because I am a total Marvel doofus and “Golden Age” Cap is the man.  Interestingly, this issue along with some others only feature one staple in the center of the spine as opposed to the two on either end that is more common today.  This may have been because of metal conservation for the war effort.  For this reason there was a sizable stress hole on the left side of the cover, but the cover has remained attached.  Sadly the bottom right corner of this issue had also served as a buffet for a family mice at some point in time.  Lastly, it would appear that the centerfold poster of Cap, purported by The Overstreet, had been removed.  Still the inside was very readable and the art impeccable.  Plus it included a short seven page story featuring the original Human Torch.  Unbeatable stuff!

I'm just not sure if this is more offensive or awesome...

Another interesting highlight was a copy of the “Cocomalt Big Book of Comics”.  This promotional comic from 1938(!) was put out by Cocomalt brand chocolate milk and featured reprints of classic funnies including Windsor McCay’s “Little Nemo”…it also has a racist cartoon on the cover.  Aside from a thumb sized hole on the right side of the cover, this issue was in superb condition.  While not nearly as flashy as a “Captain America” or “Detective Comics”, this is an extremely rare comic that shared in a long held tradition within comics during the 1930’s of reprinting newspaper funnies.  Also, this issue premiered in 1938, that same year during the month of June a certain colorfully clad alien do-gooder would appear in “Action Comics #1” changing the face of comics and American popular culture forever.

I know this is from 1938 but still, when did people start becoming sensitive to racism?

Aside from those issues there is a stack of around 20 more comics from the early 1940’s.  The majority of these are funny animal books, Mickey Mouse, Looney Tunes, Krazy Kat, just to name a few.  While these are not quite as highly sought after and therefore not as valuable as the ones listed above, they are still almost 70 years old.  Many of them are in good condition all things considered.  It is very interesting to see how the war effort was aimed at children by having Donald Duck and Bugs Bunny buying War Bonds and growing victory gardens.  Over the next few weeks I will go through these issues and grade them to the best of my ability.

Stacks of comics from the 1940s to look through--I gotta stop peeing myself...

Oh, and I forgot the best thing!  Christine’s grandma is letting pick a few to keep because my birthday is on Monday.

Best birthday ever.

While Chris is in Oneonta…

Kelly will play.  Today it is pouringgggg out which is depressing since we’re supposed to be having some shrimp on the barbe later.  Here I sit with my boyfriend Dillon, watching Deadliest Catch and drinking chocolate milk.  Daniel and Chris are grocery shopping in Oneonta with my mom and plan to go to Herkimer later.  Today I plan to finish one of my several painting projects I have this summer.  The thing about hand-me-down furniture is that it’s usually not in very good shape.  Not to mention that it never matches anything else.  Thus, I’m painting everything “pebble white” and stenciling on cool designs in blue.

Well, that’s that.  Oh, and Daniel and Christine both love Justin Bieber.

Thanks for the post Kelly. I've left it just the way I found it, but added some tags and a photo.

“What I Want For My Birthday” By Daniel

As some of you may or may not know (shame on those of you who don’t) my birthday is fast approaching.  Yes!  I, Daniel, will join the ranks of men…who can drink alcohol legally.  To celebrate this monumental occasion I have compiled a list of the five ideal birthday gifts that I would like to receive.  I will expect you all to have these gifts to me no later than 6pm on the day of my birthday, July 11th.  Thank you for your time, attention, and cooperation in this.  And remember “it’s the thought, not the gift, that really counts” is something that people who buy shitty presents say.

#5 New Heroscape stuff:

I don’t know if you know this, but I am a huge dork.  And it is only getting worse as I get older.  I recently discovered a game called Heroscape which Christine has even mentioned before.  It is a minatures game which, on the dork spectrum, is only slightly below LARPing.  But, for a minatures game, it is surprisingly easy to play (no D4, 10, 12, 20, or beyond) and has a vast array of cool characters such as robots, gorrillas, and even Marvel heroes, not just sissy elves.  And the best thing about it is that you get to build the board out of interlocking plastic hexagons.  When you think about it, it’s no wonder I love this game.  It combines three of my favorite things: lego-like building, (tiny) action figures, and epic battles.  It’s a good thing that I didn’t discover this game until much later in my life because 11 year-old me probably would have had an aneurism at how freakin’ cool it is.  Oh! and did I mention the best thing for you?  There are a plethora of items to purchase!  I only own the second master set, so you can buy me any of the other master sets or large expansions sets or small expansion sets…I WON’T COMPLAIN.

#4 Graphic novels, DVD comic collections, and pretty much any comics:

Hi, have we met?  I like comics.  I like comics more than zombies like turtles.  And here’s the joke.  I like them all…pretty much.  I am not going to argue with you if you  want to give me comics.  I am not even being picky about what form they are in.  I like graphic novels and am currently in the market for some classics such as The Dark Knight Returns, A Contract With God, and Bone, but I would take collections or trade paper backs.  I like the DVD collections that you can find online, I currently own the Amazing Spider-Man one but would love the Fantastic Four, Uncanny X-Men, or Civil War.  This is a great way to get a hold of really old/rare comics to read, advertisements and all.  And, in case you didn’t know, advertisements from the 1960’s were freakin’ hilarious…and may have advocated violence.  But seriously, even if you just want to give me your junky old stack of comics I WON’T COMPLAIN.  That being said I am always in the market for The Amazing Spider-Man, Fantastic Four, and Hellboy.  Please email me for my complete list so that you don’t send me anything that I already have because that would be like drinking a glass of water in front of a man dying of thirst, dick!

#3 Synthesizers:

Remember how earlier I said that I have been getting progressively dorkier as I get older?  Behold, the greatest dork instrument of them all, the synthesizer.  Chances are, if you didn’t know any better, you might think that all that stuff was lab equipment because that is how dorky synths are.  Now admittedly you might recognize some synths, and even know that they are instruments.  You probably have heard synths on popular songs.  I am not into the types of synths used on contemporary pop music which are largely digital and/or sampling keyboards.  I am into analog gear right now, which on the whole sounds great, costs an arm and a leg, and is mega-dorky.  Because, you see, analog synthesizers are not acoustic instruments made by people who make beautiful music, they are made by people who understand electronics and physics and look like this.  And while one can make beautiful music using an analog synth, chances are you are just going to make a lot of bleeps and bloops, or whatever.  I am currently really interested in the Korg Monotribe, big brother to the Monotron, which I own.  But if you want to spend more on me I WON’T COMPLAIN because I deserve it.

#2 Vintage and rare comics:

As previously discussed, I love comics, but far be it from me to leave you with the idea that all comics are created equal, which justifies the inclusion of a separate section for this request.  For whatever reason, I absolutely love vintage comics.  I find them to be culturally and historically significant, I love the unassuming art, the naive writing, and did I mention, I absolutely love old comics.  Now, I am of course partial to a few specific titles, namely The Amazing Spider-Man, followed by the Fantastic Four.  I have been lucky enough to have accrued a few of these titles from loved ones and my own wallet.  Though if any of you want to splurge on more vintage comics for me I WON’T COMPLAIN because I can sell the crappy ones you get me and buy ones that I want.  Now before you dust off your old copies of Micronauts to send to me I want to make something clear, when I am talking vintage, I mean V-I-N-T-A-G-E.  Silver Age and before, 10-20 cent covers.  Anything newer than that goes under #4 on this list and means that you will get a smaller piece of my birthday cake.  Unless it’s a rare comic that I have been searching for.  Y’know what?  Just ask me for my list of wanted comics.

#1 Stuffed Shells, cake, and alcohol…copious amounts of alcohol:

What I really want for my birthday not many of you can give me.  It doesn’t cost a lot and it isn’t hard to find but you still probably can’t get it for me and it’s not because you are incompetent…this time.  What I really want is to be able to sit down and have my traditional birthday dinner, stuffed shells with a meat sauce, surrounded by the friends and family that I love so dearly and miss so much.  I want to eat cake.  I want to laugh and joke.  And I want to drink deeply.  And I promise you I WON’T COMPLAIN.

It was okay, I guess...

This was taken at my 20th birthday. Christine got me The Amazing Spider-Man #40. I think I burst a blood vessel in my eye I was so excited.

The 10 Most Embarrassing Songs in My iTunes (Guest Post)

This is the day you’ve been waiting for!  Daniel agreed to do a guest post with a list of my Top 10 Most Embarrassing Songs in iTunes.  Below is his take on things.

Alrighty!  I have been tasked with ferreting out the 10 MOST embarrassing songs in Christine’s iTunes.  This is not nearly as easy a task as some of you might be thinking, mainly because Christine has such a bevy of shitty music.  It is truly astonishing to me how intensely her parents failed in providing her with a solid musical foundation.  Now some of you might be saying to yourselves “Wow, isn’t this asshole being a little harsh?”  Well…yes…and no.  She owns every single Good Charlotte album ever.  I am pretty sure she paid for each and every one.  To this, she reminds me that she “doesn’t have their latest one” as if that is something I should be proud of.  Furthermore, I take issue with this line of argumentation because, while she does not have their most recent album, I am pretty sure she has more Good Charlotte bootleg recordings than actually exist.  Now if your response to this is “Hey, I like Good Charlotte”, I have two things to say.  One: Damn you have bad taste in music!  And two: If you tare offended by this introduction do not–I repeat DO NOT–read any further.  That being said, this is all in jest.  I believe that everyone is entitled to their own terrible taste in music.  Without further ado I present:

10.  Linkin Park’s “Numb”

Before I rip into this one let me be the first to say that I have a soft spot in my heart for Linkin Park.  This is because I listened to them for a while…when I was 11.  As any well adjusted adult person will do from time to time, at about 15 I took stock of my life and music library and decided to get rid of Linkin Park.  Instead of throwing it away I gave it to my sister, who was, at the time, 11.  It seems like 11 is the right time to listen to Linkin Park because of its angst-ridden, yet surprisingly mom-friendly lyrics such as this gem from “Numb”:

I’ve become so numb I can’t feel you there
Become so tired so much more aware
I’m becoming this all I want to do
Is be more like me and be less like you

Wow!  At 11 this seemed really deep.  It also seemed to be about growing up and growing apart from my parents.  Like I said deep…at 11.  Christine is now 23.  ‘Nuff said.

9.  The Backstreet Boys’ “The Call”

This may seem blasphemous to some of you but I think that all boy bands sound/look/dance the same.  So be assured that anything that I say about The Backstreet Boys is also equally applicable to N*Sync, 98 Degrees, O-Town, New Kids on the Block, and any other boy bands you can think of.  This being said, I don’t care for The Backstreet Boys (though, if you recall I am really referring to all boy bands everywhere that have ever, do, and/or will ever exist –editor’s note).  I especially don’t care for this song.  Let me tell you why.  The premise of the song is that a guy goes out with his “boys” and meets a young lady with whom he has carnal relations despite the fact the he is in a committed relationship.  Before committing the act, though, he calls his girlfriend to tell her not to wait up for him, thusly “The Call”.  We are privy to this conversation at the beginning of the song through a spoken dialogue:

Hi its me whats up baby? im sorry listen im gonna be late tonight so dont stay up and wait for me ok?
Where are you?
what?? say… say that again
You’re really dropping out, I think my battery must be low.
Listen if you can hear me we’re going to this place nearby, all right? Gotta go.

This also serves as the chorus for the song.  Meaning that we get to hear this same dialogue sung four more times.  Which is four too many times.  Not satisfied with leaving the story with unpunished infidelity, the plot thickens as we find out that:

Now (?) is done, nothing’s been won
I can’t take it back, what’s done is done
But one of her friends found out
That she wasn’t my only one
And it eats me from inside
That she’s not by my side
Just because I made that call, yeah

First of all, yes there is an incomprehensible word in there.  I couldn’t figure it out, the internet couldn’t figure it out.  We just don’t know.  Secondly, he feels remorse only after her friend tells on him and she leaves him.  The lesson we take away from this is not to not have an affair, rather it is to not call your girlfriend first because then you aren’t lying.  Way to go The Backstreet Boys.

8.  Pink’s “Don’t Let Me Get Me”

Honestly I was surprised to find this one in in Christine’s library.  Musically it doesn’t fit with the rest of her stuff.  It’s too poppy.  Too out-of-the-can.  But the lyrics…Oh the lyrics!

Never win first place, I don’t support the team
I can’t take direction, and my socks are never clean
Teachers dated me, my parents hated me
I was always in a fight cuz I can’t do nothin’ right

Everyday I fight a war against the mirror
I can’t take the person starin’ back at me
I’m a hazard to myself

Don’t let me get me
I’m my own worst enemy
Its bad when you annoy yourself
So irritating
Don’t wanna be my friend no more
I wanna be somebody else

While I can be sensitive to the awkwardness and insecurities of modern American teenage girls, this song verbalizes these angst-ridden delusions of inferiority with such melodrama that I can’t help but to imagine gawky 2001 Christine sitting in her room raging against the world in her super-secret pink butterfly diary  Livejournal with this blasting in the background reaffirming every negative thing she felt about herself.  I don’t much care for this song to say the least.

7.  Maroon 5’s “She Will Be Loved (Acoustic)”

Now it is no secret that I hate Maroon 5.  I hate the music they make, I hate the lyrics they sing, I hate the way they look:

Was the barber out of good haircuts?

For this reason the original “She Will Be Loved” was bad enough.  But nooooooooooooooooo, Christine always has to have her bad music dial cranked up to eleven.  In this version, in addition to such lyrical profundities as:

Beauty queen of only eighteen
She had some trouble with herself
He was always there to help her
She always belonged to someone else

I drove for miles and miles
And wound up at your door
I’ve had you so many times but somehow
I want more

I don’t mind spending everyday
Out on your corner in the pouring rain
Look for the girl with the broken smile
Ask her if she wants to stay awhile
And she will be loved
She will be loved

which I am all but certain is about a guy in the friend zone that wants a girl really badly even though she is banging some other dude, we have to listen to Adam Levine’s slightly out of tune yearnings…in falsetto…backed by bongos.  Poorly played bongos.  And, as if this wasn’t enough, he kicks it into high gear for the last few choruses.  In this instance “kicks it into high gear” means “screams like a cat being put through a meat grinder”.

6.  Brand New’s “Play Crack the Sky”

Christine loves Brand New.  She has all of their stuff.  I, on the other hand, do not like Brand New.  Not one bit at all.  For this reason I know she will be unhappy with anything I have to say here, because, I am pretty sure, this is her favorite Brand New song.  “Play Crack the Sky” is a terrible song.  Here are the lyrics:

We sent out the S.O.S. call.
It was a quarter past four, in the morning
When the storm broke our second anchor line.
Four months at sea. Four months of calm seas
To be pounded in the shallows off the tip of Montauk Point.

They call ’em rogues. They travel fast and alone.
One hundred foot faces of God’s good ocean gone wrong.
What they call love is a risk,
‘Cause you will always get hit
Out of nowhere by some wave
And end up on your own.

The hole in the hull defied the crew’s attempts,
To bail us out.
And flooded the engines and radio,
And half buried bow.

Your tongue is a rudder.
It steers the whole ship.
Sends your words past your lips
Or keeps them safe behind your teeth.
But the wrong words will strand you.
Come off course while you sleep.
Sweep your boat out to sea
Or dashed to bits on the reef.

The vessel groans
The ocean pressures its frame.
To the port I see the lighthouse
Through the sleet and the rain.
And I wish for one more day to give my
Love and repay debts.
But the morning finds our bodies washed up thirty miles west.

They say that the captain stays fast with the ship,
Through still and storm,
But this ain’t the Dakota,
And the water’s so cold,
Won’t have to fight for long.

(This is the end.)
This story’s old but it goes on and on until we disappear,
(This is the calm.)
Calm me and let me taste the salt you breathed while you were underneath,
(We are the risen.)
I am the one who haunts your dreams of mountains sunk below the sea,
(After the storm.)
I spoke the words but never gave a thought to what they all could mean,
(Rest in the sea.)
I know that this is what you want, a funeral keeps both of us apart.
(Washed up on the beach.)
You know that you are not alone, I need you like water in my lungs.
This is the end.

Let’s begin with the title of the track.  What?!  It makes no sense.  This song is about a sinking ship.  I just can’t think of any way this title fits the song, which is pretty consistent with many of Brand New’s other poorly titled tracks (i.e. “I Will Play My Game Beneath The Spin Light” or “The Boy Who Blocked His Own Shot”).  Ok.  Fine.  Songs can have bad titles but still be good songs.  This is not one of those songs.  It is about a sinking ship off the coast of Montauk Point.  For those of you who don’t know, Montauk is the furthest tip of Long Island.  Are we really to believe that the coast guard wouldn’t save these guys?  And furthermore, are we really supposed to believe that a rugged sea captain (I will admit the only thing I can picture when I hear this song is “Deadliest Catch”) would be whining like a little girl?  I understand that we are supposed to feel the emotional impact of hearing a doomed man’s innermost thoughts in his last moments on earth.  But I have a hard time believing a salty old sailor would be so willing to wax poetic about imminent doom when he could focus on swimming.  Also, has Jesse Lacey ever had a near death experience?  If so, did he really think like this?  And if that is the case, can someone get that man a purse and some high heels.

One more thing:  every time I hear this song I can’t help but think of a quote from the “Flight of the Conchords” T.V. show that went something like this: “Chicks dig that sensitive nautical shit.  It’s like that movie, Watership Down…women love that film”.  Brand New’s “Play Crack the Sky” is a whiney song is all I am trying to say.

5.  Avenged Sevenfold’s “Seize the Day”

I don’t know Avenged Sevenfold.  I have never heard their stuff.  I just randomly clicked on this track while searching for bad music on Christine’s iTunes.  This was a decision I would live to regret.  The opening line of “Seize the Day” is, can you guess it, seize the day.  With just this opening line, played quietly on Christine’s laptop, my ears actually started bleeding.  M. Shadows (yes, M. Shadows *facepalm*), who apparently…sings(?)…for Avenged Sevenfold (thanks Wikipedia) is not actually a man.  He is some kind of horrible robot from a warbound alien race sent to emit a terrible frequency through his mouth-unit with the sole purpose of driving humanity mad enough to wipe each other out so that the aliens can populate earth.  Or maybe he’s a Siren or something.  I don’t know.  All I know is that he needs to be stopped:

Need I say more?

4.  Panic! At the Disco’s “I Write Sins Not Tragedies”

You all know this song.  I don’t know what to say about it.  It’s just terrible.  There was a freaky music video that went with it.  That was terrible too.  Yet for some reason this song was a huge hit.  There’s no accounting for taste.

Anyway.  “I Write Sins Not Tragedies” is instantly recognizable from its opening which features pizzicato strings.  I think this is supposed to seem unique and quirky and make you say “Wow! They are real musicians.  They even got an orchestra to help them out!”, though I am fairly sure I have the very same pizzicato string sound on my Yamaha keyboard.  As far as I can ascertain a sustained story line from this song, it is about some guy creeping in a church that overhears a bridesmaid badmouthing the bride.  Now I am no expert on women, but isn’t that fairly common behavior for bridesmaids to trash-talk about the bride, namely because they aren’t the ones getting married and are increasingly aware of their biological clocks tick-tick-ticking away, no thanks to their mothers?  Then the creepy guy interjects:

I chime in
“Haven’t you people ever heard of closing a goddamn door?!”
No, it’s much better to face these kinds of things
With a sense of poise and rationality

He then proceeds to sing this four more times.  Who is this guy?  Why is he telling this girl to shut up?  Is he the priest?  The brother?  Or is he just some creepy guy?!  And furthermore, when did it become acceptable to have two shitty verses and then the chorus five times?  It is hard to believe I managed to pick three songs worse than this one.

3.  Green Day’s “Boulevard Of Broken Dreams”

I don’t hate Green Day.  I have some of their stuff.  I would argue that “Nimrod”, “Dookie”, and “Insomniac” are genuinely good, enjoyable albums.  Yet, for some reason, sometime in 2004 Green Day sold out their roots as a respected pop/punk band, Billie Joe Armstrong dropped 40 pounds, they all started wearing eye liner, and making bullshit “music” like this.  It is redundant for me to give you lyrics because I can just say “I’M LONELY” and you’ll get the picture…but here they are anyway:

I walk a lonely road
The only one that I have ever known
Don’t know where it goes
But it’s home to me and I walk alone

I walk this empty street
On the Boulevard of Broken Dreams
Where the city sleeps
and I’m the only one and I walk alone

I walk alone
I walk alone

I walk alone
I walk a…

My shadow’s the only one that walks beside me
My shallow heart’s the only thing that’s beating
Sometimes I wish someone out there will find me
‘Til then I walk alone

Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Aaah-ah,
Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Ah-ah

I’m walking down the line
That divides me somewhere in my mind
On the border line
Of the edge and where I walk alone

Read between the lines
What’s fucked up when everything’s alright
Check my vital signs
To know I’m still alive and I walk alone

I walk alone
I walk alone

I walk alone
I walk a…

My shadow’s the only one that walks beside me
My shallow heart’s the only thing that’s beating
Sometimes I wish someone out there will find me
‘Til then I walk alone

Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Aaah-ah
Ah-ah, Ah-ah

I walk alone
I walk a…

I walk this empty street
On the Boulevard of Broken Dreams
Where the city sleeps
And I’m the only one and I walk a…

My shadow’s the only one that walks beside me
My shallow heart’s the only thing that’s beating
Sometimes I wish someone out there will find me
‘Til then I walk alone…

In the immortal words of Charlie Brown as Lucy yoinked that football out from under him for the 47,000th time, AUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGH!  This is just one of the worst songs I have ever heard ever.  This song set a whole new low on the bar of standards.  I have heard weasels mating that were more profound and symphonic.  I can’t think of enough ways to say that I don’t like this song.  I mean, the name, “Boulevard Of Broken Dreams”, COME ON!  What producer thought that that was gonna be a hit?  I guess he was right, but this is still an epically bad song.

2.  Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way”

There aren’t words to describe how much I loathe Lady Gaga.  I can’t stand anything about her: her lack of musical talent, her abject absence of singing ability, her dancing, her “writing”, her fashion, and most of all her envelope-pushing totally original persona.  I truly, deeply, honestly think that she is a talentless hack whose only real ability is to glom onto shocking/unpopular modes of existence to cause stupid people to sit up and take notice.  And who are we kidding here, none of that super confident, sexy(?), and outrageousness is real; it is an image manufactured by record companies–now repeat after me–TO SELL ALBUMS.  Look, I understand that overly sexualized, bizarrely dressed, and androgynous sells:

I listen to both these guys.

The only difference is that both these guys have and had (miss you Freddie!) talent.  Unlike Lady Gaga.  Don’t believe me?  Let’s look at the facts:

“Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta (born March 28, 1986), better known by her stage name Lady Gaga, is an American pop singer-songwriter. After performing in the rock music scene of New York City’s Lower East Side in 2003 and later enrolling at New York University‘s Tisch School of the Arts, she soon signed with Streamline Records, an imprint of Interscope Records. During her early time at Interscope, she worked as a songwriter for fellow label artists and captured the attention of Akon, who recognized her vocal abilities, and signed her to his own label, Kon Live Distribution.”

This is taken directly from Wikipedia.  The first tip-off that she is talentless should be the fact that she was discovered by Akon whose major hit is “Smack That” and is frequently known to use autotune which we all know means he can’t sing.  Next, we see that, “Gaga had initially signed with Def Jam Recordings at the age of 19, although she was dropped by the label after only three months”, most likely because they realized she had no talent. Even the name Lady Gaga is not her own: 

Music producer Rob Fusari, who helped her write some of her earlier songs, compared some of her vocal harmonies to that of Freddie Mercury.  Fusari helped create the moniker Gaga, after the Queen song “Radio Ga Ga“. Gaga was in the process of trying to come up with a stage name when she received a text message from Fusari that read “Lady Gaga.” He explained,

“Every day, when Stef came to the studio, instead of saying hello, I would start singing ‘Radio Ga Ga’. That was her entrance song. [Lady Gaga] was actually a glitch; I typed ‘Radio Ga Ga’ in a text and it did an autocorrect so somehow ‘Radio’ got changed to ‘Lady’. She texted me back, “That’s it.” After that day, she was Lady Gaga.  She’s like, “Don’t ever call me Stefani again.”

See! I told you she stole Freddie Mercury’s style.  But I haven’t even got to the song yet.  Now don’t get me wrong, I hate all of her songs.  But “Born This Way” is the lowest of the low.  Here are the lyrics:

It doesn’t matter if you love him, or capital H-I-M
Just put your paws up
‘Cause you were born this way, baby

My mama told me when I was young
We are all born superstars
She rolled my hair and put my lipstick on
In the glass of her boudoir
“There’s nothin wrong with lovin who you are”
She said, “’cause he made you perfect, babe”
“So hold your head up girl and you’ll go far,
Listen to me when I say”

I’m beautiful in my way
‘Cause God makes no mistakes
I’m on the right track baby
I was born this way
Don’t hide yourself in regret
Just love yourself and you’re set
I’m on the right track baby
I was born this way

Ooo there ain’t no other way
Baby I was born this way
Baby I was born this way
Ooo there ain’t no other way
Baby, I was born this way
I’m on the right track baby
I was born this way

Don’t be a drag – just be a queen
Don’t be a drag – just be a queen
Don’t be a drag – just be a queen
Don’t be!

Give yourself prudence
And love your friends
Subway kid, rejoice your truth
In the religion of the insecure
I must be myself, respect my youth
A different lover is not a sin
Believe capital H-I-M (hey hey hey)
I love my life I love this record and
Mi amore vole fe yah (love needs faith)

Don’t be a drag, just be a queen
Whether you’re broke or evergreen
You’re black, white, beige, chola descent
You’re lebanese, you’re orient
Whether life’s disabilities
Left you outcast, bullied, or teased
Rejoice and love yourself today
‘Cause baby you were born this way
No matter gay, straight, or bi,
Lesbian, transgendered life
I’m on the right track baby
I was born to survive
No matter black, white or beige
Chola or orient made
I’m on the right track baby
I was born to be brave

I was born this way hey!
I was born this way hey!
I’m on the right track baby
I was born this way hey!

I was born this way hey!
I was born this way hey!
I’m on the right track baby
I was born this way hey!

Look, we get it:  she supports the Gay community.  That is great!  But what isn’t great is that she supported the Gay community only after they supported her.  Lady Gaga didn’t seek out the Gay community, they chose her (who knows why?).  So when she comes out with a song so strongly oriented toward that audience it seems a little disingenuous.  I only say this because, for this reason, this song comes off as pandering to her fan base rather than actually and genuinely feeling supportive.  Also, what the hell does:

Don’t be a drag, just be a queen
Whether you’re broke or evergreen
You’re black, white, beige, chola descent
You’re lebanese, you’re orient

mean?  Is evergreen the opposite of broke?  Is one even born broke or evergreen?  Black, white–got it.  Chola descent–getting confused.  Lebanese?  Is Lebanese a race?  “You’re orient”?  That is just abysmal english.

I guess what I am trying to say is that I think Lady Gaga (or more appropriately her record label) preys upon the Gay community for support and only returns that support with half-hearted gay-bar anthems with very cliché messages.  The rest of the individuals in the world are susceptible only to her shock and awe.  Don’t believe me?  Check this shit out.

1.  Good Charlotte’s “Lifestyles Of The Rich and Famous (Acoustic Version)”

So you remember way back at the beginning when I mentioned Good Charlotte?  I wasn’t kidding.  And how.  Christine has 106 Good Charlotte songs and videos totaling to a whopping 6.7 hours of listening/watching material.  I don’t know if she hates herself or if she is playing some kind of practical joke on us all, but there it is.  As you will recall she doesn’t have all of there albums, missing only their most recent release.  With this practically endless supply of awful music to choose from it was nearly impossible to pick the worst of the bunch.  But then I saw it.  Maybe it was divine inspiration, maybe it was Christine’s hand trying desperately to hide her shame from me.  But I saw “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous (Acoustic Version)” and, call it fate, call it kizmet, I knew then and there that that was my number one.  All of you know “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous”.  Don’t pretend that you don’t.  Here are the lyrics to remind you:

Y’a only see it on TV
Or read it in the magazines
Celebrities that want sympathy
All they do is piss and moan
Inside the rolling stone
Talkin’ about how hard life can be

I’d like to see them spend a week
Livin’ life out on the street
I don’t think they would survive
If they could spend a day or two
Walking in someone else’s shoes
I think they’d stumble and they fall
(they would fall, fall)

Lifestyles of the rich and the famous
They’re always complainin’
Always complainin’
If money is such a problem
Well they got mansions
Think we should rob them

Well did you know when you were famous you could kill your wife
And there’s no such thing as 25 to life
As long as you’ve got the cash, to pay for Cochran
And did you know if you were caught and you were smokin’ crack
McDonalds wouldn’t even wanna take you back
You could always just run for mayor of D.C.

I’d like to see them spend a week
Livin’ life out on the street
I don’t think they would survive
If they could spend a day or two
Walking in someone else’s shoes
I think they’d stumble and they fall
They would fall

Lifestyles of the rich and the famous
They’re always complainin’
Always complainin’
If money is such a problem
Well they got mansions
Think we should rob them (rob them)
(They would fall, they would fall)

Lifestyles of the rich and the famous
They’re always complainin’
Always complainin’
If money is such a problem
You got so many problems
Think I could solve them

Lifestyles of the rich and famous
We’ll take your clothes, cash, cars, and homes just stop complainin’
Lifestyles of the rich and famous
Lifestyles of the rich and famous
Lifestyles of the rich and famous

What a scathing diatribe against the excesses of Hollywood.  It is so bold, so daring, so authentic…-ally full of shit.  Do you know who is rich and famous?  Good Charlotte!  Do you know who doesn’t live on the streets?  Good Charlotte!  Do you know who has mansions?  GOOD CHARLOTTE!!!  And as if this song wasn’t crappy enough, somehow Christine has the acoustic version which is like the original only it involves more bad acoustic guitar and more singing that hits the ears much like a cheese grater.  And all of this with less studio polishing, which is arguably the only good point about Good Charlotte.  Which, if the final product is so very very terrible, says loads about the raw material the producers are working with.  I bet they have to wear hazmat suits in the studio.  I’ll leave you with this as a reminder that nothing I have said throughout this entire post has been too mean at all:

We shall all start shunning!

Thank you, Daniel, for that insightful look into my iTunes library.  I won’t try to defend myself…because I can’t.  I’m totally self-aware that I have terrible taste in music.  I’ve accepted it, and I’ve definitely made some improvements.  He could have chosen other, more embarrassing tracks (in my opinion), so I’m not upset that he chose these ten.  

Here’s a photo I took today:

Look! I took a picture of Daniel while he wrote this very post!

I tried to do an Hour-by-Hour post, but I forgot to take photos after 4pm.  But that’s okay, I snapped some good ones early this afternoon.  I’m also working on a “DIY Graduation Announcements” post.  And while Daniel agreed to let me choose 10 embarrassing tracks from his iTunes library, I just don’t think he even has enough embarrassing tracks to make a top 10 list.  Thanks for doing this Daniel!