Friday, September 23, 2005


Taking place in my neighborhood tomorrow is a horrible little event called Blocktoberfest. They do it every year in Ballston and I cannot understand why. In "honor" of Oktoberfest, organizers fence off 3 blocks for an entire afternoon, set up multiple stages featuring something like 20 bands, and sell booze on the streets. From the intial details this sounds like a pretty damn cool idea. Negative.

If this were actually anything like the real Oktoberfest activities in Bavaria, then this would be a great time. You roll up, get a bite to eat from a sausage cart, and drink copious amount of high-octane brew out of huge glass mugs. But that ain't so when Arlington/Ballston does their take on the affair. You see, what they do is charge a $20 entrance fee, sell plastic Solo cups of beer at 6 bucks-a-pop (from only a few locations which creates monstrously long and inefficient lines), and force you to stay within in the police-barracaded Blocktoberfest area while drinking your booze.

On the plus side of things you can count on a heaping helping of Arlington's standout 'tang population to partake in the event but on the downside this also creates a feeding frenzy among the city's equally substantial chachi/frat boy contingent. While entertaining, observing these simian mating rituals while being fleeced $6 at a time will drive the average human to claw his/her own eyes out.

For anyone contemplating attending this little soiree may I suggest that you instead donate $20 to the Red Cross and have a party at your house where you can get lit up off of a $12 case of PBR. Now that, as my main man Wooderson put it, is L-I-V-I-N.

- Randy "Pink"

Monday, September 19, 2005

MTV's Guide to Parenting

One of my guiltiest TV pleasures is My Super Sweet 16 on MTV. Yet another "reality" show on the former music network, this show follows the antics of various teenage girls planning their 16th birthday parties. The catch is that these kids are ridiculously wealthy. Or rather their parents are. I think the bulk of the kids come from California (Orange County, of course) and their parents are usually media moguls, hedge fund managers, mega-club owners, and the like. And these parties are outrageous. Huge clubs and ballrooms rented out with guest performances by national acts, hundreds of guests, designer clothes, yadda yadda's ridiculous. One of the juiciest segments is when the girl-of-the-hour assembles her wicked coterie of "friends" and they debate who among their peers is worthy to attend the affair ("hot","sweet", "cool") and who simply doesn't rank ("fat", "loser", "bitch").

It's trashy, voyeuristic, and utterly vapid but I do think the show can provide some valuable parenting tips to people with teenage daughters, especially rich people with teenage daughters. And the lesson is this; Don't spoil your kids. I know, you've heard it before but it is worth reiterating. Why, you ask. Because the girls on this show are the shittiest people on Earth. Hands down. If you ever wondered why Paris Hilton is the way she is, My Super Sweet 16 will show you exactly how she became a solipsistic whore. My favorite quote from one of the episodes is "If my parents don't give me a car for my birthday, I'm never speaking to them again." And I thought I was a dick to my parents.

So, to all my friends planning on one day having kids I suggest you watch this show and learn.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Dirty Old Man

So the school year has begun and I'm back in school...yet again. I've decided to earn a second master's degree because well, I can't think of anything better to do with my free time. I can already tell this might be a huge mistake. I spent over 5 hours on Sunday doing homework. Homework!! Like a goddamnned 13-yr-old. The worst part about it was that I only accomplished half of what I wanted to get done. The last time I went to grad school it was a lot easier. I read some books, shot my mouth off during lectures, a few "homework assignments" here and there, and the last minute papers (which in retrospect were nothing more than 10-page overly literate blog entries).

This time it is an entirely different tale. Class is like well, class. No long lectures where we sit around shooting the shit and arguing over the esoterics of a certain position. Now it's blackboards, notes, a monotone professor, and me and 30 of my classmates desperately trying to keep awake. Who knew it was goign to be so much like school. Eh, fuck it. I'm in for the long haul and it gives me something substantive to complain about.

Though there is one nice aspect to my re-education. College girls are HOT. Fortunately for me, my classes are on the main campus of a large state school and since the weather has been nice around here, the scenery has been equally plesant. It defintely was not like this when I was an undergrad, and even as a grad student a couple of years ago. Something has changed. And what it is is that young girls dress like complete f'ing sluts. All the time.

It would be one thing if they were going to a club or some frat party to get date-raped, but they dress like this for class at 4:30 in the afternoon. Super mini-skirts, low rise jeans that they have been poured into, little tiny low-cut baby doll tees, and visible thong straps galore. It is a beautiful thing to behold and I spend as much time as I can taking it all in. Now if I had a duaghter there is no way I would let her out of the house dressed like that but since I don't have that problem, it's all good. Am I a dirty old man? Goddamn right.

Monday, September 12, 2005

DC, what the hell?!?!

It's a complaint that's been made a thousand times before but it is now my turn to take a dig at the concert scene in my hometown. DC, what the hell?

On Friday night at the Black Cat I saw one of the best shows I have been to in a very long time (and I've been to a lot so I do have a bit of perspective on the subject). The Wrens put on one of those amazing shows that you just don't see very much of anymore. It had all of the elements that make for a great live performance:

material - this band really really makes great music
earnestness - without the preening self-importance (see: Bono, Sting)
energy - real raw performance energy, not the idiotic stage antics of MTV-ized pop punk bands
joy - the kind that can only come from a group of guys in their 30's who have finally "made it"

So what am I bitching about? The fact that this band put on an incredible performance to a near-packed house and 80% of the crowd stood around with their hands in their pockets quietly bobbing their heads. What the hell!?!? I'm not asking for crowd-surfing and devil signs but show some signs of life. Why is this town to cool to have a good time? Why is it unacceptable to enjoy oneself at a rock show? Who started this ridiculous trend and can I please kick him/her in the balls/cunt?

If you don't like music then don't go to shows. If you do like music but are too cool to let anyone find out, put your hand in the garbage disposal.

For anyone wishing to retort, I will be at the following shows:

Q And Not U @ The Black Cat
The Black Crowes @ 9:30 Club
Bob Mould @ 9:30 Club
Foo Fighters/Weezer @ Patriot Center
New Pornographers @ 9:30 Club

...I'll be the guy rockin' out.