Sunday, October 28, 2007

Parenting 101.

Yesterday Monika and I went out to eat, and upon walking into our destination, we noticed a little boy, approximately age 4, sitting in the driver's seat of an SUV, watching a mini DVD player. Sure enough, his parents (and interesting, another little kid) were inside the restaurant enjoying a fine meal, not in any position to see what was happening with their kid. While Monika and I ate, we were sitting at a bar/stool arrangement of sorts where we were about 10 feet from the SUV, and were generally flabbergasted at the impressive level of incompetence of the anti-parents within the establishment.

Who knows where I can get a large trophy that says "DEADBEATS" on it?

Bonus Material!: said SUV featured large rims with ultra-thin-sidewall tires. Upon departure, the owner noticed that the driver-front tire was a bit torn. *Shrug* Off he went. Not only does he not know how to parent, but he couldn't care less about the impending blowout he's going to experience. Nice.

My Dog is the Fastest Dog Ever.

...Or the third fastest ever. Close enough. Last Thursday Miles and I ran the one-mile "Fido Run" at the Fort Worth "Friends of the River" event. They told us explicitly that the race was a non-competitive event, to which I guffawed and poised myself to turn on the afterburners. Interestingly, when Miles and I run by ourselves, we maintain about a ten-minute-mile pace, not fast by any stretch of the imagination. However, with other dogs out and about on the run, he was all fired up and actually tried to pull me faster at times. All in, we finished in about 7 minutes, and came in third place.

On a quasi-related note, I have been massively tired lately. The general strain of work, working out, and a busy schedule has resulted in a noticeable decrease in bloductivity (I just invented that word) on my end. I'll try to get back on the saddle now.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Sight of the Day.

Today I went to Curly's to get some fine frozen custard. Being primarily a drive-through, there are only a couple parking spots in front for walk-up orders. When I pulled up, it turned out that both spots were occupied by a pickup truck larger than the titanic with a bumper sticker that - I kid you not - said "DOUCHEBAG" in big, bold letters. I laughed. I thought about how appropriate it was. And then I wondered, did he put it on himself? Did someone else put it there and he just hasn't noticed yet? The latter seems impossible, which leads to the former. But I still remain baffled by it. I've seen a lot of female-oriented stuff like "I go from zero to bitch in 3.5 seconds," and I suppose I can see how in a twisted sort of way, I woman could like to wear her extreme bitchy-ness as a badge of honor, but douchebag?! Paradoxically, only a total douchebag might actually want a sticker that says "douchebag" on their car, even though I still think it's impossible that any human being would want that sticker on their car.

Either way, he's earning it.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007


A couple months ago I was playing golf with a few coworkers when a redneck-filled truck drove by hurling insults at us such as "GOLF IS FOR ." I find such comments interesting, since I generally think that only people with money and time on their hands can play golf.

I just got back from running with my dog, where a group of gothed-out-teenage-degenerates (ironic since I'd probably fit this description back in the day, but I digress...) who drove by me at one point decided to tell me I was gay (I think) for not wearing a shirt while running. Funny, I thought going shirtless while working out was common practice.

It's interesting, I also thought that should someone decide to hurl an insult at anyone, they'd at least be man enough to do it in person, as opposed to out of the window of a fast-moving car. It's a shame that the world is littered with so many cowardly pieces of shit these days.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Habits That Make No Sense.

I just read about my friend's propensity to keep worthless boxes for no apparent reason which got me thinking about strange things we do which are generally against our "type." Here's mine: some of my clothes, particularly those which I consider my "favorites," I just don't wear. In this instance, I know what my problem is, though - I don't want to wear them because I don't want to mess them up. Of course, however, not wearing them destroys the entire point of owning them in the first place. This is particularly prevalent for some of my Radiohead shirts, especially my old ones which I ordered from England back when almost no one, even most Radiohead fans, had a clue what W.A.S.T.E. is.

Another weird one: when I finish a shower, before I grab a towel, I usually wick as much water off my skin as I can with my hands. I think the background on this one had something to do with camp back in the day, and some jackasses replaced my full-size towel with a washcloth. For some reason I still do it, though. Weird.

What strange habits do you have?

Saturday, October 13, 2007

A Reminder.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

“In Rainbows.”

As the first new album released while I’ve had my appropriately titled “Scatterbrain” blog running, I feel it’s my duty to post a thorough review of “In Rainbows” that lives up to my blog name (for those of you who are unaware, “Scatterbrain” is the title of a fine Radiohead song). Ultimately I don’t think I can form an objective review of a Radiohead album since I love the band so much, but I’ve thought about it, and have decided I don’t care. You can read my biased review and like it!

Typically when I obtain a new album by any group, even Radiohead, it takes quite a while for me to warm up to it. Well, not this album. I’m not sure what it is about it – it’s easy to listen to. It’s not particularly hard or soft, vibrant or sleepy, but unlike many albums for which I’d think of the same general characteristics, it’s incredibly intoxicating. It grabs you from beginning to end and submerges you in layer upon layer of aural satisfaction that tickles your eardrums until you shiver and collapse in a pile of warm goo.

Take, for example, the album’s biggest shocker, “Reckoner.” The song debuted years ago at Redrocks Ampitheater in Seattle – in fact, I believe that was the only performance of the song ever (verified here – 58 Hours) – as a guitar-driven, hard-edged stomper. Imagine my surprise when I queued up the song and heard a cymbal-driven, multi-layered, falsetto-crooned, symphonic dream that made the original sound like a distant, inferior memory.

I often have debates with people about the definition of “good” music – is there such a quality? Is a simple pop song featuring the repetitive hooks that Timbaland creates “good”? Does a song have to have complex lyrics to be “good”? What the hell does this have to do with “In Rainbows”? The song “All I Need,” although it might not be as “good” as many other Radiohead songs in its depth or construction, has already become an instant classic for me, and probably my favorite song on the album. Sweet, simple lyrics, driven by a steady beat that ends in a crash of cymbals that is so amazing that lasts just long enough to give you a taste, but then abruptly stops, making you want to listen to it again to feel the rush. It distinctly reminds me of “Lightning Crashes” by Live, another song I like for similar reasons.

At the end of the album, we have the gentle piano-driven “Videotape,” one of those classic Radiohead songs where you can’t figure out whether it’s uplifting or depressing, but to dwell on said question would be missing the point. It’s fantastic. And how’s this for a closer?

No matter what happens now

You shouldn't be afraid

Because I know today has been the most perfect day I've ever seen.

As we approach the end of the album, we hear distant shadows of the bleeps and flicks that gave tracks like “Idioteque” from Hail to the Theif their hard edge. But just as you think they are about to come crashing down on you, they instead gently fade away, compelling you to return to track 1 and take another trip down the rainbow.


Dear reader, in case you come from a faraway land and aren’t one of my friends or family that regularly read Scatterbrain, here is where I remind you that this album is FREE. Go get it.

Monday, October 08, 2007

How About Those 'Boys!

Absolutely unreal. I didn't think it was possible to win a football game after a +6 turnover stat until tonight. Wow.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Pumpkin Carving Fest 2007.

This is Fred, my pumpkin this year:

Friday, October 05, 2007

Flax Seed Oil Can Do What?!?!?

More Steroid Fun!

So Marion Jones has now admitted to steroid use. The part that annoys me is this:

"The triple gold medalist in Sydney said she took "the clear" for two years, beginning in 1999, and that she got it from former coach Trevor Graham, who told her it was flaxseed oil, the newspaper reported."

I just don't understand the rationale for bringing up such nonsense. Is the idea that as long as your coach tells you you're taking "magic fairy dust," it doesn't matter that you're getting ripped and huge? Does the fact that Barry Bonds has actually convinced himself that "the clear" is "mystery-super-gel" change the fact that he juiced his head to expand to three or four times its normal size?

It's a total cop-out to confess to something with caveats. "Yes, I took steroids, but hey, I didn't know I was taking them at the time." Bullshit!

I hope sometime in his lifetime we get the full story from Floyd Landis. The difference between him and the other athletes is that he has fought the accusations against him the hardest, and with the most earnestness. He's been found guilty and stripped of his Tour de France title. Yet he still maintains his innocence, which is interesting given that he's already lost everything. Bonds has an incentive to skirt the issue forever because he's already enshrined with the '*' that will live forever. But Landis' case is interesting indeed. I hope someday we get to hear what happened.

Why I Paid $80 for Something That Could Have Been Free.

I recently mentioned that Radiohead decided to give away their new album, "In Rainbows", digitally, for free. Alternatively, you could pay 40 pounds, or about $80, for the boxed set which includes the physical CDs, plus vinyl versions, plus a booklet with the lyrics and artwork, etc.

So of course, I bought the boxed set. Why? Could I have obtained "the same thing" for free? But most people's standards, yes. By mine, no. For me, the musical experience isn't just about the audio manifestation of the artist's vision (although it is obviously by far the most important), but also the visual - what artwork is included with the album? What does it mean and why was it chosen for this music? When I open an album for the first time, I enjoy the fresh, plastic smell of newness. I like the presence of the physical object in my hands.

Yes, despite the fact that I often use my iPod, I still have yet to purchase a single album on iTunes. I just can't wrap my mind around it yet. One day I'll get there. But with Radiohead, it's not going to happen.


Of course, the "Free vs. $80" question brought up some other interesting questions, such as how much I'd pay for the digital album if there were no boxed-set option. However, a slightly more interesting question a friend proposed to me is this: let's say the cost of "In Rainbows" was $X: what's the most I'd be willing to pay for the album, assuming the possibility of piracy is non-existent? In other words, for this little game you have to assume the only way you're going to hear the music, period, is if you purchase the album for yourself. For your purposes, you can assume I'm talking about your favorite artist, so it's given that you'll enjoy the music with almost absolute certainty.

I think that I'd be willing to pay somewhere around $1000 for a Radiohead album if there were no alternatives. What would you pay for your favorite band?

Monday, October 01, 2007

Radiohead - "In Rainbows" for FREE.



This still hasn't completely settled in so I'll ponder and comment more later.