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Bullet Sunday 789

Posted on Sunday, January 8th, 2023

Dave!Don't worry about me being buried under snow, again, I'll manage just fine... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• I Can See Clearly Now! I didn't want to spend $720 to replace my two damaged windows... but it turns out it was money well-spent. If for no other reason than I can actually see out of them now. Having to try and look through condensation and sediment that was inside my old busted windows was impossible in cold weather. And since the kitchen window is the ONLY window on either floor where I can see out the front of my house... and my bedroom window is one of only two useable windows on the ENTIRE 2ND FLOOR... they're probably the most important windows I have! Ironic how that works! But typical, huh?

• Sing! This is Dave Grohl's daughter, Violet...

Gorgeous. Musical talent very much runs in this family.

• As It Should Be. Tennessee Becomes First State to Charge Child Support to Drunk Drivers Who Kill Parents. Absolutely shameful that this is not the norm in all 50 states. Actions should have consequences... especially for something as dire as this. I'd ask my Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell where they're at on this, but it's probably the same place that digital driver's licenses are for Washingtonians... nowhere. They're too busy cashing their Big Pharma checks... or whatever it is that's more important to them.

• Big Ships! Now this is both fascinating and cool...

When things get bigly huge is when they get very interesting. Where do they get the materials to build something so massive?

• Order-Free! Netflix occasionally likes to experiment with their content. I like to encourage this, even though it rarely results in big wins. Their latest is Kaleidoscope, a heist series with episode colors instead of episode numbers, that you can watch in any order (and which Netflix shuffles for every viewer)...

Kaleidoscope Poster

My order was Black, Yellow, Green, Blue, Orange, Violet, Red, Pink, and White. Black is always first. White is always last. I don't know that my order is better than any other, but I like that Yellow was first because one of the very few twists in the series would be ruined otherwise. Ultimately this isn't a bad show... it's just not a great one. Probably because the episodes can be watched in any order, they have to be self-contained. They can't really build upon each other to create a narrative. And they can't really do anything monumental because then they could spoil something if watched in the wrong spot. They're all just meh after a while. Which is to say that though I enjoyed the series at first... by the time I was half-way through I was disappointed. The ending was kinda fun though. I'm not sure exactly how this concept could be improved in the future, but I wish Netflix luck in trying.

• Themes. Angelo Badalamenti died last month. He was a phenomenally gifted magician who had a long and interesting career, mostly scoring film and television. But what he's probably best known for is his collaborations with David Lynch. The guy made Twin Peaks what it was...

It's not exactly like his life was cut short... he was 85... but as I always do when somebody with such talent passes, I can't help but think he left us too soon.

• Old Amsterdam! Few shows made such an immediate impact on me as New Amsterdam (the second one, not the first one about an immortal in New York City, which was also very good). It's a hospital drama in a sea of hospital dramas, but one that feels quite different to me. And it's ending this month. It got an abbreviated final fifth season...

New Amsterdam Poster

Over the years it's had some amazing stories told, and I'm a bit sad that it's not going to be around any more (even though the drama outside the hospital had gotten a bit stale). All I know is that this cast... starting with Ryan Eggold... better end up on great new shows as soon as possible.

Until next week, buckaroos.


Martin Luther King Jr. Mix

Posted on Monday, January 16th, 2023

Dave!As I do every year on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, I listened to his iconic I Have a Dream speech.

But this year was a little different.

This is amazing...

I can't help but hope that setting it to music might entice people who may not hear otherwise hear it to take a listen.


Bullet Sunday 794

Posted on Sunday, February 12th, 2023

Dave!Don't worry, I'm here with a distraction from the Superb Owl... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Ronnie! Talked about a missed opportunity at the Superb Owl! I was waiting for Rhianna to walk out and say "Uh oh! Bonber alert!" then Andy Samberg would walk out as Shy Ronnie...

One thing's for sure... it would have been unexpected.

• Lo siento! This would be the kind of thing that happens to me (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@yoryanantonio Soy muy t0nto… muy #elchiquito #dolcegabbana #stefanogabbano 🤦🏼‍♂️🤦🏼‍♂️🤦🏼‍♂️@andreamezamx ♬ original sound - Ryan Proctor

...assuming my girlfriend was Miss Universe 2020.

• Scam the Tragedy! A gentle reminder... if you receive an email wanting you to donate to a cause... any cause... don't click the link in the email. If it's not an organization you know the address for to type directly in your browser, do a Google search for the official website. I just received an email wanting me to donate to the Syria and Türkiye earthquake relief efforts from "The Red Cross," and it was a big ol' scam. All my donations go to Doctors Without Borders anyway, but holy crap... what kind of garbage would exploit a tragedy to scam people out of money?

• You're Poor! You can't afford it, you povo (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@shabazsays #duet with @K A M I restocking is only for the rich sorry not sorry #Restock #puttaykam #povogang #funny #react #reaction #fyp #foryou #foryoupage #commentary #viral #comedy #trending #rich ♬ original sound - K A M I

Because you're poor!

• Luther! OOOOOOOH BOY! I am really, really looking forward to this...

It's like... Idris Elba is magic on the screen. Every. Single. Time. Just look what he did in the frickin' Thor movies, for crying out loud! And Luther is an exceptional character that shows off exactly why the guy is so good at his craft. Kudos to Netflix for sinking some money into quality.

• Alexa He Ain't! I really wish that Sonos speakers could use Siri. Because the Sonos Voice Assistant is fucking useless as a piece of shit at a pool party. Telling it to play songs never works. The only thing it does reliably is "stop" music when you tell it. Otherwise it's some bullshit about not understanding what you want and having to use your SONOS app. One thing I DO like, however, is the voice that SONOS uses for their AI. He's very calming. A little vulnerable. Which he kinda has to be given that he can't do jack shit. Though he's not as sexy as "Australian Male Voice 1" that I use for Siri but, let's face it, nobody could be sexier than Australian Male Voice 1. That guy sounds like he has slept his way through entire ecosystems.

• Again! After being severely disappointed with the last two Depeche Mode albums, I was surprised at the first single off their forthcoming album, Moments Mori. Ghosts Again is more like Depeche Mode than they've been in ages...

One can only hope that the rest of the album is this good.

Until next Superb Owl...


Bullet Sunday 796

Posted on Sunday, February 26th, 2023

Dave!The weather continues to be a hot (then cold) mess, but I'm committed to warm vibes... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Puppers! Every week I click on the latest one of the "We Rate Dogs" videos to see if the dogs were good again this week... and every week I have to really hold it together so I don’t burst out in tears. This week is no exception (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@weratedogs Top 5 Dogs of the Week #weratedogs ♬ Metamorphosis - Danilo Stankovic

Good doggies.

• DIE! TikTok is overrun with funny videos which use music from the Dumb Ways to Die song. I decided to look up the entire thing and was surprised to find that there's a cute video to go with it...

Most of us are going to die dumb. It's a part of life.


You laugh, but I'm betting Tucker Carlson is writing a rant about it as I type this. The dumbass went off with his manufactured outrage over candy mascots, so you just know his panties are in a bunch over this.

• Busters! The movie We Have a Ghost is actually not half bad. They gave Jennifer Coolidge hair by Tammy Faye, which is epic. And, let me tell you, David Harbour deserves all the awards. His character can't speak, so he has to sell every scene by force of will, and he does a fantastic job with it...

Streaming now on a Netflix near you.

• Facts. There is an actual danger to kids in this country. And it ain't drag queens...

@newgirlny_fl Things you won’t hear from LibsofTikTok or #rondesantis #trans #transgender #thisiswhattranslookslike #mtf #lgbtq #lgbt #🏳️‍⚧️ #rainbowmafia ♬ original sound - Kristen B

Drag queens have been entertaining people for decades. Hell, Bugs Bunny was in drag in a number of his cartoons. But now that bigots are wanting to divert attention away from what's going on in their own back yards, it's suddenly a problem. Milton Berle and Flip Wilson want their wigs back.

• Life! And while we're on the subject... NEWSFLASH: Proposed South Carolina bill could make abortion a death penalty eligible offense. — Preserving the sanctity of life... as only death can. Jesus.

Onward and upward...


A New Era for Sonos Sound

Posted on Thursday, March 30th, 2023

Dave!I have a love/hate relationship with Sonos Home Audio.

On one hand, they are very good speakers. The sound I get from a single Sonos One (the cheapest, smallest speaker in their lineup) is better than I get from the speakers on my pricey Sony television. Sonos speakers are very well balanced to handle just about everything. Music sounds just as good as audiobooks which sounds as good as TV shows and movies.

But on the other hand, Sonos can be incredibly frustrating. When I replaced my Sonos PlayBar with a Sonos Arc, I spent a full hour talking with their support to get everything working. It was supposed to be an easy, no-brainer task, but it sure didn't end up that way for me. And then there's weird networking drop-outs that happen at random and can be a real bitch to resolve considering the only thing I ever get told is "IT'S BECAUSE YOUR WI-FI NETWORK SUCKS!!!" (as if I have some kind of cheap-ass Wi-Fi router buried in the basement instead of dual AmpliFi Alien routers in a mesh network that blankets my home with perfect Wi-Fi).

In the end I am happy enough with Sonos to ignore its shortcomings (no line-in is fucking stupid on a level of fucking stupid that has me reconsidering what I consider to be fucking stupid given how expensive their speakers are... and don't get me started on not being able to use dedicated left and right channels for surround sound). I have quite a few of their products collected from Black Friday sales over the years, and most rooms in my house are covered with Sonos sound. Heck, I even have Sonos in the bathrooms so I don't have to miss what's happening on my television shows when I have to get up and go pee.

And then Sonos decided to get cute and offer a new line of "Era" speakers. The Era 100, which takes the place of their entry-level Sonos One speaker... and the Era 300, which takes the place of their long-abandoned Play 3 speaker.

The Sonos Era 100 and 300 Speakers.

At first I was going to safely ignore their new offerings because I have neither the money nor the desire to expand upon my speaker collection.

But then I learned that the Era 300 is designed from the bottom up to support Dolby Atmos and I was intrigued. Dolby Atmos allows precise sound placement within a room. This is usually reserved for theaters which can install speakers all the way around the seating area... along with the ceiling... so that the action can move around the room to match what you are seeing. It's a pretty nifty trick. The technology is something that is supposed to be supported by my Sonos Arc soundbar, but the effect is minimal to the point that it might as well not even exist at all.

The Sonos Era 300 has an up-firing speaker that looked substantial enough to actually maybe kinda support actual Atmos sound bouncing down on your from above...

The Sonos Era 300 Speaker All Blown Apart.

So I used my final two Sonos upgrade credits and all the Black Friday money I had left after buying Neon Bad Monkey and pre-ordered a pair of them.

And now they're here.

And I'm just going to cut to the chase here. They are... pretty good.

Because whether or not you have great Atmos sound largely depends on the audio mix that movie and television studios add to their products. I've tested these speakers for hours with all kinds of movies available in Dolby Atmos, and it's very rare that I find myself going "Whoa!" because some sound playing above me was distinct enough to catch me by surprise. No, for the most part, you're largely just getting a better, fuller surround sound experience. Back-To-Front and Front-To-Back audio is far more distinct with those up-firing speakers because you can feel the "movement" better. Far better than I did with my Sonos Ones as rear speakers. For that reason alone I am quite happy with my purchase. And who knows? Maybe as more and more people have Dolby Atmos available at home, studios will start doing better mixing so that my speakers can take advantage of it.

Now lets get to the Dolby Atmos experience that's truly worth it... Atmos Music!

I tell you what... I had read that Apple was partnering with Sonos so that their spatial audio tracks would play on Sonos hardware... but I wasn't thinking of that when I fired up some music to see if it sounded good from the 300s. A couple tracks played and I was suitably impressed.

Then the song If You're Too Shy (Let Me Know) by The 1975 dropped and I thought I was hallucinating. Lead singer Matt Healy's vocals were IN FRONT OF the music. And acoustical queues were all over the room. If I closed my eyes, it was as if The 1975 were set up in my living room. Then I remembered about the Apple Music Atmos thing and, sure enough...

The Sonos app showing me that my music is from a Dolby Atmos mix.

For many Dolby Atmos music tracks, what you hear is flat-out mind-blowing. The 1975 remixed all their stuff, and (for the most part) it's incredible. Some songs are more experimental than others. Some songs push it too far to the point of distraction. But most of the songs are perfectly rendered in a way that makes the whole experience... maybe not better... but perhaps nicely different.

All of a sudden I was scouring all my favorite tracks to see if they had Atmos mixes available.

And it was like discovering music all over again.

Yes, there are instances where the Atmos is a gimmick that doesn't work. But for others? It runs the gamut. The biggest surprise was Kacey Musgraves Golden Hour. Whomever came up with her mixes just knocked it out of the park (with a couple notable exceptions which are gimmicky as hell). It. Is. Sublime. In Oh, What a World when that banjo hits, I had chills running up my spine. It's a fantastic experience. My favorite Post Malone tracks were wonderfully mixed for spatial audio. The newest Taylor Swift album is beautiful. And some bands you just know were hopping on the bandwagon early with Atmos remixes... like ODESZA. The track they did with Namoi Wild, Higher Ground, feels like her vocals are ON TOP OF the music. Or something. I can't even begin to explain it. But it's fantastic. Of course, it was a great track even before spatial audio...

The highest praise I can offer for spatial audio and Dolby Atmos music is that, when mixed right, the vocals never get lost in the music. They are always distinct and rendered front-and-center. One of the best songs to hear this is with Miley Cyrus's Flowers. There's places that she harmonizes with herself. But when listening to it without Atmos, the voices blend together. With Atmos, however, the harmonizing backing vocals are... like... elsewhere. They don't merge or compete... they're just another part of the music. I don't know quite how to explain it. But once I hear the difference... then go back to regular stereo... I can no longer un-hear it because the Atmos version feels like it's the way you're supposed to be hearing it.

So... probably not returning my pair of 300s... even though there's some bullshit right out of the gate.

First of all, Sonos finally... FINALLY... added bluetooth and line-in to their speakers. But when you configure them to be part of a Dolby Atmos setup... YOU NO LONGER CAN USE THEM FOR EITHER! WHAT THE BLOODY FUCK, SONOS??

The Sonos app showing me that my music is from a Dolby Atmos mix.

When that message popped up, it was all I could do to keep from throwing my phone against the wall. I was more than a little upset... I was fucking pissed.

I'm sure that Sonos will come up with some kind of bullshit excuse to explain it away, but the simple fact is that you could easily... easily... just have the speaker ignore all other input once the line-in is receiving input. This is not fucking rocket science. The fact that I can't just plug into one of my pricey new speakers with a frickin' line-in is so far beyond rage-inducing that I honestly don't know what to do with my anger from it.

But at least there's the option for a line-in... AT ALL.

If I were flush with cash I'd likely buy a single Sonos Era 300 for my bedroom and run a line from my television. That way I could have darn good TV sound along with a kick-ass speaker for music (the stereo separation from a single 300 is surprisingly good).


Assuming I win the lottery tomorrow, it's not enough to just buy a $450 Sonos Era 300 speaker for my television. YOU ALSO HAVE TO BUY A FUCKING $20 MINI-PLUG DONGLE! It's like... holy shit. There's fleecing your customers, and then there's Sonos fucking gouging their customers. This is pretty disgraceful.

So... to summarize in bullet points...

  • Setup actually worked like it was supposed to this time. I had an immediate software update I had to send to the Era 300's, but I was up and running in minutes.
  • I love that the power cord plug is smaller now. My rear speakers are on a slim shelf that I drilled holes in so the cords are hidden. But the Sonos Ones had a big-ass plug which meant I had to use a metal rod to smash it through the hole. The new Era plugs are more compact and just pop through. Easy!
  • I've had mixed results with Sonos TruePlay tuning (where you walk around the room waving your phone around while the Sonos app listens to tones and calibrates the speakers so their sound is best rendered in your room). The first time I tried it years ago, I loved it. Then the last couple times I thought the calibration was pretty bad and removed it. This time the jury is still out. I think it made my Atmos music sound better... but the movies I tried after calibration didn't sound as bright and the overhead sound was muted. I'll probably keep TruePlay on but fine-tune the EQ and upward sound levels.
  • The line-in garbage mentioned above is fucking bullshit. I am outraged that not only is it fully disabled when you use them as surrounds... but you also have to buy a fucking dongle. It's as if Sonos said "WELL, YOU WANTED A LINE-IN, SO HERE IT IS... TOO BAD WE FUCKING BROKE IT!
  • Until more studios really invest in doing Dolby Atmos mixes that are killer, I wouldn't buy these speakers just for movies with Dolby Atmos. It's just not a big enough upgrade given how many mediocre mixes are out there claiming to be "Atmos."
  • The "killer app" on the Era 300s is Dolby Atmos music. Spatial audio provides an experience I haven't heard before and, for the most part, I absolutely love it. As more and more artists go back and remix their music (or remix the mixes that aren't that great) I think this is reason enough to give them a listen and see what you think.
  • Yes, the price of Sonos gear is as heinous as it ever was. About the only justification I can offer is that they feel quality. They are noticeably heavy and seem built to last. And, needless to say, the sound quality is darn good given the size. Exceptional even. I have never had a complaint about the sound I get... and even a meager little Sonos One provides a great experience. Sonos is one of those companies where I think the cost is likely worth it. That being said, every piece of my Sonos gear was bought on sale because... damn.
  • All my stuff was purchased directly from Sonos because I like that they offer a money-back-guarantee when you purchase from them. It's the least they can do given how much money it costs. If you are on the fence, it's worth investigating whether the shop you're buying from can offer a guarantee. Pretty sure not all of them do.
  • If you are a long-time Sonos customer, Sonos will give you "upgrade credits" which knock 15% off the price of their wares. For every speaker you own that's old enough to earn a discount, you get one credit to use on another speaker to replace it. Except you don't have to return your old speaker... you get to keep it! If you registered your products with Sonos, be sure to look at your account and see what's available. I saved nearly $70 each on the 300s, which is serious money.
  • A lot has been said about how "ugly" the Sonos 300s are. Personally, I'm not seeing it. I am very sensitive to design aesthetics and actually really like the look of them. When sitting on the shelf behind my couch, they look nice from any angle and have an impressive heft to them that makes me confident a cat isn't going to knock them off (if they were to ever climb up on those shelves, which they rarely do).
  • I did not buy any Era 100s and really have no plan to do so. The improvement over my Sonos Ones seems minimal, as there's no up-firing speakers for rendering Atmos. The stereo separate looks like it might be pretty good... but since the speaker is so narrow, I'm not sure how noticeable it would be.

And there you have it.

If you've got a showroom somewhere near you with Sonos gear, it might be worth a look if you're thinking about investing in new speakers.


Bullet Sunday 802

Posted on Sunday, April 16th, 2023

Dave!After Easter Sunday we're back to just another Sunday. BUT NOT REALLY... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Supertramp! The other day I was reminded of one of my favorite album covers, Supertramp's Breakfast in America from 1979. On top of having a great cover, the album had some great tracks on it. Tracks I haven't listened to in years. So I decided to play it. After iTunes displayed the album art, I wondered whatever happened to the woman who was in the photo. A quick Google search later, and I found out her name was Kate Murtagh and she passed away in 2017. Something else I found out? The album cover is one of those wild-ass conspiracy theories where there are people claiming that it predicted 9-11 because when you reverse it, 9 11 appears behind where the World Trade Center is at...

Close up of the Supertramp album cover.

The Supertramp album cover flipped to show 9-11 behind the World Trade Center.

And it's like... whatever. Every coincidence has to mean something to people who don't have anything else going on, I guess.

• Perspective! This is a little bit of genius thinking (here is a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@ianisfun Weird how time makes things easy or unattainable. #wellbeing #gratitude #psychology #mindfulness #happiness ♬ original sound - Ian Slater

Trying to be grateful for everything and anything is something to strive for. And this is a good reason to believe that.

• Johnny Reb! You're Probably Wrong About Confederate Monuments...

Or, maybe you're right.

• Defensive! Holy shit. This video is an hour. But it's worth your valuable time. Jon Stewart is an actual journalist. And getting to the truth is his only goal... and he will roast anybody, of any party, and of any position... to get to it. This is a master class in what journalists will strive for. Dang. You'd have to be very brave or very foolish to agree to be interviewed by Jon Stewart...

Good to know. Good to know.

• Chatty AI! This video explaining AI is 5 years old. From what I can tell, it was renamed to mention ChatGPT so that it would become relevant again. Despite the fact that it never was irrelevant...

We are moving towards a truly wacky time in human history.

• Easter is a Shade of Orange! I missed this last week, and I'm dead now...

It's like... he's more Trump than President Trump!

• Mindblowing Proteins! Holy crap!

The miracle of life is truly a miracle.

Enjoy what's left of your Sunday.


Bullet Sunday 804

Posted on Sunday, April 30th, 2023

Dave!Spring has sprung and the local orchards are killing me with allergies, but I am not dead yet... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Williams! John Williams is one of the... if not the... greatest movie composers of all time. A lot of people may debate this, but anybody who can take a pile of shit like Star Wars: The Phantom Menace and make it even a little tolerable has earned the honorific. Duel of the Fates is an incredible piece of music. CinemaStix does a shallow dive into "The Best Decision George Lucas Ever Made, and here it is...

Williams was due to retire. But then we found out he was composing for the final Indiana Jones movie... Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny... and now it sounds like he has something cooking with Steven Spielberg too. Lucky us!

• Wes! And speaking of Star Wars... these Wes Anderson parodies just keep getting better and better. My previous favorite was the parody of what an Anderson X-Men film would be like. But this is my new favorite...

Wow. I would pay serious money to watch this film.

• ROBOTS! There are movies that I am completely hooked on before the trailer even reaches the halfway mark. This is 1000% one of them. It looks hilarious...

Since it's by HBO films, I'm guessing it will end up on "Max" eventually. We'll see if I can wait that long... or whether I'll be paying the on-demand price to see it before that.

• Hate System! Former Republican Governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger has long been speaking out against bigotry, and on Friday this CNN interview was posted...

Say what you want about the guy but, in the grand scheme of things, he is a force for good in this world. We need more people like him.

• Beautification! This video is not for everyone. But if you're an architecture nerd like me, it's a wonderful, wonderful deep dive into reversing a horrible trend of turning cities into prisons. It's long, but I watched it twice because it was so interesting to me...

We need more of this happening in our cities. We need it.

• Puppers! This past week I saw a flood of "reaction" videos from people talking about the latest video from Lewis Capaldi. People bawling their heads off. People breaking down completely. And I was like "Whatever!" because I'm not a very emotional person, and just dismissed the "overreaction" outright. But then I watched it...

Then I was like "Yeah, I get it now." Humans and their antics may not often put a lump in my throat... but animals can do it quite easily. Couple the song with the video, and you can't be human and not react in some way to it.

• Undiplomatic! The Diplomat (Netflix) was very good television. It's dense and smart without being boring. It spins its wheels a bit, but ultimately moves ahead at a good clip. It also has fantastic performances that make it all the better. BUT THEN THEY END IT ON A MASSIVE CLIFFHANGER. Not about some small aspect of the story... BUT THE ENTIRE POINT OF THE STORY. It's like the story was cut in two and you only get the first half. Which is just fine if you've already been renewed for a second season. But, so far as we know, no second season has been ordered. Which means that the writers of the show are hacks of the fucking worst kind. They're too lazy to complete a story and then come up with a big idea to open the second season... instead they drop a bombshell so that they can just continue with what they've already done. No need to figure out a way to forge forward in a new, exciting direction... just roll onward from where you've already been. And if you get canceled? You don't care! Fuck your audience!...

I am so sick of this shit. IF YOU DON'T KNOW IF YOUR SHOW WILL CONTINUE, WRAP IT THE FUCK UP! STOP WITH THE UNWARRANTED CLIFFHANGERS YOU ABSOLUTE PIECE OF SHIT HACKS. This crap is fucking embarrassing, and I'm tired of it. — UPDATE! The show has been renewed for a second season. Which does nothing to stop my raging, because they could just keep doing this same shit each season until they're canceled and we're left hanging.

If I'm still alive from allergies next Sunday, you know where to find me.


I Don’t Wanna Lose You

Posted on Friday, May 26th, 2023

Dave!I am such a huge, huge fan.

In addition to all the bangers Tina Turner had throughout her career, she was also given the thankless task of trying to work the word "Goldeneye" into a James Bond song... and absolutely killed it...

Damn. What an incredible voice.

It's really tough to pick a favorite Tina song. It's one of two songs... I Don't Wanna Lose You...

Or, after hearing it in that epic episode of Schitt's Creek, it may very well be The Best...

Patrick's version was a clever cover...

Whereas David just went with the best The Best...

Rest in Peace.

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Viva New Hate

Posted on Friday, June 2nd, 2023

Dave!I was a massively huge fan of The Smiths from the moment I walked into a Tower Records store in Spring 1984.*

It was the year of my graduation and I was quickly approaching a time when I really needed to figure out what I was going to do with my life. College wasn't really a possibility because there was no way I could afford it. The job market in my area was awful thanks to Reaganomics driving wages lower and lower. I was disillusioned with the politics of the day and life in general. I was despondent about the future. It was, after all, George Orwell's year of doom. It was 1984.

And The Smiths were making music about all of it.

It was as if Morrissey was crooning each track just for me, all while being accompanied by Johnny Marr's bouncy guitar riffs. The Smiths was picking up the social sensibilities of the Punk Movement I had loved, then packaged it for the masses.

I was gutted when The Smiths broke up in 1987. Four albums and done? It really didn't seem fair. Johnny Marr teamed up with Barnard Sumner to form the band Electronic in 1988 and started releasing music the next year (and we got three albums out of the collaboration, all of which were great).

As for Morrissey? He went on to release four amazing albumns... Viva Hate, Kill Uncle, Your Arsenal, and Vauxhall and I... followed by scads more that just didn't hit for me. By 1995 I was done buying his new music, but replayed his old stuff often.

A regret was never managing to see The Smiths in concert.

After a cancelation and a reschedule I couldn't attend, I thought that a Morrissey concert wasn't in the cards, but finally flew to see him in Tampa in 2014. The concert was darn good, but wouldn't have been a Morrissey concert without some drama. He thought the crowd wasn't into it, so he cut his set short and bailed. Which, I ain't going to lie, actually made it feel more special.

Over the years Morrissey has become more and more unhinged, and I can't relate to him at all. I wouldn't want to. Then this morning I read this article about it, and found out I'm not the only one.

About the only joy I get out of anything past his old music is him being skewered on The Simpsons like this...

And definitely this imitator named "Quilloughby" which is actually the best Morrissey non-song in decades...

The fact that Quilloughby is voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch is just the icing on the cake.

And on that note, I guess I'll be listening to The Smiths for the rest of the day.

* I want to say it was the Bellevue location, but it could have been the Seattle Center location because I don't know if Bellevue was open at the time. Back in the day I would bounce between both stores looking for those precious British import maxi-singles from Depeche Mode and The Thompson Twins. The Bellevue location was my favorite because they seemed to get more of what I was looking for. I was reminded of this when I saw a video of the old Tower Records Bellevue being torn down...

Oh how I loved Tower Records back in the day. Shopping for music on a computer just can't compare to walking down those jam-packed aisles of albums and discovering some magical release that you didn't even know existed. I really miss that, and am sad that younger generations are missing out on what a cool experience it is.


god money i’ll do anything for you, Ashley O

Posted on Wednesday, June 14th, 2023

Dave!I've been rewatching a bunch of Black Mirror episodes in preparation for the new season that's releasing tomorrow.

And, I gotta say... there are a lot of amazing episodes over the show's run, but my favorite remains Rachel, Jack, and Ashley Too. It's the infamous Miley Cyrus episode that was panned by hardcore Black Mirror fans for being too superficial and "feel-good." But it's just not. It's actually a deep dive into where we're at right now. Musical artists die, then get brought back to tour as holograms. AI is writing songs in the style of artists dead and live. The industry forces artists to conform to the molds they dictate based on profitability taking priority over creativity.

And it's fucking hilarious.

Miley puts everything she has into a role that she is intimately familiar with, and blows the doors off the episode...

The music video they released for the Nine Inch Nails parody I'm On A Roll reamins one of my Miley obsessions...

A couple things I didn't know then that I know now.

ONE: Miley sang the track live at Glastonbury AS Ashley O in 2019...


Ashley Too Funko Pop!

And of course I ordered one. How could I not?

I tell you right now, if Miley Cyrus ever releases an Ashley O album, I will be first in line to buy ten copies.


Bullet Sunday 810

Posted on Sunday, June 18th, 2023

Dave!Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there (including mine). It's a good day to celebrate it... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Extracting! The first Extraction movie was pretty good. I enjoyed it quite a lot. But the second one? Extraction 2? Holy cats! They like took everything from the first movie... which was already intense... and just ramped it right up past eleven. So good! In other news... I'm in love with Golshifteh Farahani now. I mean, I already fell for her by the end of the first movie... but now I'm like "I want to have your baby" level of in love. If Chris Hemsworth does, in fact, retire from acting... there is no reason what-so-ever that the franchise couldn't continue with Nik in the lead. Zero. She would be incredible...

Golshifteh Farahani playing Nik on Extraction

I'd watch a Nik-centric movie as a spin-off for dang sure. Please, Netflix, get on that ASAP. Just back up a big dump truck full of cash to Golshifteh Farahani's house and make it happen! A prequel with Ovi would be ever so good!

• Misogyny Nation! Why does this country hate women? I mean it... they hate them. The USA despises women, considers them nothing more than breeding stock, and considers them an expendable resource when it comes to making more Americans...

With each passing day I grow more and more disgusted in what we're becoming.

• Blork! I love Mexican Street Corn. I order it any time it's on the menu. I'm addicted to Mexican Street Corn dip. So you can imagine how thrilled I was to see that Cheetos Mexican Street Corn dip flavor. But, alas...

When I can't even bring myself to eat them at work... a place that I will eat anything just because it's there... you know they're bad. What a shame.

• Fast Car! This is a surprisingly good cover. It takes a lot of balls to take on the original Tracy Chapman classic... but he nails it...

And that's not something I say about a lot of covers out there.

• Studio Idiocy! HEADLINE: Avatar 3 Pushed a Year to 2025, Two Star Wars Movies Head for 2026 and Avengers Films Delayed. Lord. If this keeps up, I'll be dead before half of them Marvel stuff I want to see are even released. This is truly making me not give a shit any more. Disney has stalled all momentum in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. They no longer build towards anything... they just putter around at random, and will then complain when all of us who have no more fucks to give don't turn up for the movies.

• Good Beatings! I am not a violent person. I abhor violence. It's everything that's wrong in our world. That being said, it's a good thing that I'm not in charge of security at this museum...

Even though the painting wasn't damaged, there's the possibility that it could have been. And for that alone these assholes deserve to have the ever-loving shit beat out of them. Who the fuck makes their point by being such fucking shit-heads? Makes me want to go out and do whatever I can to cause more climate change just to spite them.

• Mateoooo! And now, because I really like you, I found out that Mateo Lane's new special if available on YouTube. But who knows for how long?

Mateo is darn funny. And he's got a lot of good stuff on his YouTube Channel.

Enjoy what remains of your Sunday, party people.


Smash or Pass on Pet Shop Boys

Posted on Friday, June 23rd, 2023

Dave!When it comes to my favorite bands of all time, Pet Shop Boys are in my top five somewhere. Nobody really does what they do, and they're such a huge force in Brit-Pop music that even their missteps are worth listening to.

Last week they released Smash: The Singles 1985–2020, which runs through (almost all) of their singles... 55 in all...

The album cover to Pet Shop Boys SMASH... which features a blur of colors rushing past... assumably from all their albums.

It's a massive collection that's a non-stop parade of great tracks.

As I was listening to it for the third or fourth time, it compelled me to go through my Pet Shop Boys playlist and sort them from my favorite tracks. It's interesting to see how so many of my favorite songs were never released as singles.

As an example, my favorite Pet Shop Boys song is The Way it Used to Be off of the album Yes. It's a gorgeous track that's meticulously crafted. For reasons that completely escape me, it was never released as a single, and therefor wasn't included on Smash (and, to my knowledge, has never been performed live on tour).

The list below is far from complete. There's a ton of demo tracks and side-projects that I'll need to work in one of these days. For now though, 253 entries is enough...

  1. The Way it Used to Be (Yes 2009).
  2. Flamboyant (PopArt: The Hits 2003).
  3. Red Letter Day (Bilingual 1996).
  4. Love Comes Quickly (Please 1986).
  5. Memory of the Future (Elysium 2012).
  6. Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money) (Please 1986).
  7. Dreaming of the Queen (Very 1993).
  8. The Survivors (Bilingual 1996).
  9. The End of the World (Behavior 1990).
  10. Up Against It (Bilingual 1996).
  11. Go West (Very 1993).
  12. Love etc. (Yes 2009).
  13. Suburbia (Please 1986).
  14. Always (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  15. What Have I Done to Deserve This? (with Dusty Springfield) (Actually 1987).
  16. West End Girls (Please 1986).
  17. Vulnerable (Yes 2009).
  18. Liberation (Very 1993).
  19. Beautiful People (Yes 2009).
  20. Leaving (Elysium 2012).
  21. All Over the World (Yes 2009).
  22. Home and Dry (Release 2002).
  23. Together (Yes: Further Listening 2009).
  24. Did You See Me Coming (Yes 2009).
  25. It Doesn't Often Snow at Christmas (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).
  26. This Must Be the Place I Waited Years to Leave (Behavior 1990).
  27. I'm With Stupid (Fundamental 2006).
  28. A Different Point of View (Very 1993).
  29. More Than a Dream (Yes 2009).
  30. Can You Forgive Her? (Very 1993).
  31. I Wouldn't Normally Do This Kind of Thing (Very 1993).
  32. I Get Along (Release 2002).
  33. Building a Wall (Yes 2009).
  34. King of Rome (Yes 2009).
  35. Rent (Actually 1987).
  36. Thursday (featuring Example) (Electric 2013).
  37. Tonight is Forever (Please 1986).
  38. Jealousy (Behavior 1990).
  39. Two Divided by Zero (Please 1986).
  40. Pandemonium (Yes 2009).
  41. Glad All Over (Yes: Further Listening 2009).
  42. Paninaro (Please: Further Listening 1986).
  43. Before (Bilingual 1996).
  44. To Face the Truth (Behavior 1990).
  45. To Speak is a Sin (Very 1993).
  46. The Sodom and Gomorrah Show (Fundamental 2006).
  47. Saturday Night Forever (Bilingual 1996).
  48. To Step Aside (Bilingual 1996).
  49. The Loving Kind (Yes: Further Listening 2009).
  50. A New Life (Actually: Further Listening 1987).
  51. Always on My Mind (Discography: The Complete Singles Collection 1991).
  52. Minimal (Fundamental 2006).
  53. In Private (featuring Elton John) (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  54. Psychological (Fundamental 2006).
  55. Jack The Lad (Please: Further Listening 1986).
  56. Alone Again, Naturally (featuring Elton John) (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  57. It's a Sin (Actually: Further Listening 1987).
  58. One and One Make Five (Very 1993).
  59. Why Don't We Live Together (Please 1986).
  60. Domino Dancing (Introspective 1988).
  61. One in a Million (Very 1993).
  62. Winner (Elysium 2012).
  63. Being Boring (Behavior 1990).
  64. Tonight is Forever (Please 1986).
  65. Give It a Go (Elysium 2012).
  66. So Hard (Behavior 1990).
  67. Young Offender (Very 1993).
  68. Bet She's Not Your Girlfriend (Behavior: Further Listening 1990).
  69. The Theater (Very 1993).
  70. Yesterday When I Was Mad (Very 1993).
  71. I'm Not Scared (Introspective 1988).
  72. This Used to Be the Future (with Phil Oakey) (Yes: Further Listening 2009).
  73. How Can You Be Expected to Be Taken Seriously (Behavior 1990).
  74. The Only One (Nightlife 1999).
  75. The Night I Fell in Love (Release 2002).
  76. You Only Tell Me You Love Me When You're Drunk (Nightlife 1999).
  77. I Cried for Us (Yes: Further Listening 2009).
  78. Left To My Own Devices (Introspective 1988).
  79. Birthday Boy (Release 2002).
  80. Shopping (Actually 1987).
  81. I Want to Wake Up (Actually 1987).
  82. Heart (Actually 1987).
  83. It Must Be Obvious (Behavior: Further Listening 1990).
  84. Miserablism (Behavior: Further Listening 1990).
  85. We're All Criminals Now (Yes: Further Listening 2009).
  86. Nightlife (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).
  87. It Couldn't Happen Here (Actually 1987).
  88. It Always Comes As a Surprise (Bilingual 1996).
  89. E-Mail (Release 2002).
  90. London (Release 2002).
  91. Listening (Elysium: Further Listening 2012).
  92. Breathing Space (Elysium 2012).
  93. My Girl (Yes: Further Listening 2009).
  94. I Want a Lover (Please 1986).
  95. Requiem in Denim and Leopardskin (Elysium 2012).
  96. Hell (Elysium: Further Listening 2012).
  97. You Choose (Release 2002).
  98. Only the Wind (Behavior 1990).
  99. Se a Vida é (Bilingual 1996).
  100. Footsteps (Nightlife 1999).
  101. I Started a Joke (Elysium: Further Listening 2012).
  102. A Face Like That (Elysium 2012).
  103. The Dictator Decides (Super 2016).
  104. Vampires (Nightlife 1999).
  105. It's Alright (Introspective 1988).
  106. In His Imagination (Elysium: Further Listening 2012).
  107. Dreamland (featuring Years & Years) (Hotspot 2020).
  108. I Want a Dog (Introspective 1988).
  109. My October Symphony (Behavior 1990).
  110. Burning the Heather (Hotspot 2020).
  111. In Denial (Nightlife 1999).
  112. Only the Dark (Hotspot 2020).
  113. Indefinite Leave to Remain (Fundamental 2006).
  114. Up and Down (Yes: Further Listening 2009).
  115. I Don't Wanna (Hotspot 2020).
  116. Love is a Bourgeois Construct (Electric 2013).
  117. Here (Release 2002).
  118. King's Cross (Actually 1987).
  119. Give Stupidity a Chance (Agenda 2016).
  120. Invisible (Elysium 2012).
  121. Gin and Jag (Yes: Further Listening 2009).
  122. Between Two Islands (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  123. What Are We Going to Do About the Rich (Agenda 2016).
  124. Reunion (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  125. Monkey Business (Hotspot 2020).
  126. I Made My Excuses and Left (Fundamental 2006).
  127. Hold On (Elysium 2012).
  128. Hoping for a Miracle (Hotspot 2020).
  129. Decadence (Very: Further Listening 1993).
  130. Night Song (Yes: Further Listening 2009).
  131. Happiness is an Option (Nightlife 1999).
  132. Was That What it Was? (Please: Further Listening 1986).
  133. Losing My Mind (Introspective: Further Listening 1988).
  134. Where the Streets Have No Name (I Can't Take My Eyes Off of You) (Behavior: Further Listening 1990).
  135. You Are the One (Hotspot 2020).
  136. Everything Means Something (Elysium 2012).
  137. Inside a Dream (Electric 2013).
  138. The Last to Die (Electric 2013).
  139. Happy People (Hotspot 2020).
  140. On Social Media (Agenda 2016).
  141. Will-O-the-Wisp (Hotspot 2020).
  142. Groovy (Super 2016).
  143. Love Life (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  144. I Didn't Get Where I Am Today (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  145. We're the Pet Shop Boys (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  146. Believe / Song for Guy (with Elton John) (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).
  147. The Forgotten Child (Agenda 2016).
  148. Twenty-Something (Super 2016).
  149. Casanova in Hell (Fundamental 2006).
  150. The Pop Kids (Super 2016).
  151. Searching for the Face of Jesus (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  152. Love is a Catastrophe (Release 2002).
  153. Sexy Northerner (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  154. Twentieth Century (Fundamental 2006).
  155. Inside (Elysium: Further Listening 2012).
  156. Time on My Hands (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  157. Florescent (Electric 2013).
  158. Happiness (Super 2016).
  159. Shameless (Very: Further Listening 1993).
  160. Transparent (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  161. Vocal (Electric 2013).
  162. Your Early Stuff (Elysium 2012).
  163. Radiophonic (Nightlife 1999).
  164. Boy Strange (Nightlife 1999).
  165. Closer to Heaven (Nightlife 1999).
  166. Too Many People (Very: Further Listening 1993).
  167. In The Night (Please: Further Listening 1986).
  168. I Don't Know What You Want But I Can't Give It Anymore (Nightlife 1999).
  169. Sail Away (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).
  170. The Samurai in Autumn (Release 2002).
  171. Hit and Miss (Bilingual: Further Listening 1996).
  172. For Your Own Good (Nightlife 1999).
  173. I Get Excited (You Get Excited Too) (Introspective 1988).
  174. One More Chance (Actually 1987).
  175. Do I Have To? (Actually: Further Listening 1987).
  176. DJ Culture (Behavior: Further Listening 1990).
  177. Hey Headmaster (Very: Further Listening 1993).
  178. The View from Your Balcony (Bilingual: Further Listening 1996).
  179. If Looks Could Kill (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  180. Girls and Boys (Very: Further Listening 1993).
  181. New York City Boy (Nightlife 1999).
  182. Fugitive (Fundamental: Further Listening 2006).
  183. A Man Could Get Arrested (Please: Further Listening 1986).
  184. Hit Music (Actually 1987).
  185. Your Funny Uncle (Introspective: Further Listening 1988).
  186. Into Thin Air (Super 2016).
  187. Metamorphosis (Bilingual 1996).
  188. The Ghost of Myself (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).
  189. The Lost Room (Lost 2023).
  190. Sad Robot World (Super 2016).
  191. Burn (Super 2016).
  192. Say It to Me (Super 2016).
  193. Integral (Fundamental 2006).
  194. Transfer (Fundamental: Further Listening 2006).
  195. Girls Don't Cry (Fundamental: Further Listening 2006).
  196. The Boy Who Couldn't Keep His Clothes On (Bilingual: Further Listening 1996).
  197. The Resurrectionist (Fundamental: Further Listening 2006).
  198. Try It (I'm In Love With a Married Man) (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  199. A Certain "Jenesais quoi" (Fundamental: Further Listening 2006).
  200. The Truck Driver and His Mate (Bilingual: Further Listening 1996).
  201. Nervously (Behavior 1990).
  202. Somebody Else's Business (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).
  203. Undertow (Super 2016).
  204. Electricity (Bilingual 1996).
  205. Bolshy (Electric 2013).
  206. How I Learned to Hate Rock 'n' Roll (Bilingual: Further Listening 1996).
  207. Positive Role Model (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).
  208. I Will Fail (Lost 2016).
  209. Forever in Love (Very: Further Listening 1993).
  210. Skeleton's in the Closet (Lost 2023).
  211. Delusions of Grandeur (Bilingual: Further Listening 1996).
  212. Some Speculation (Very: Further Listening 1993).
  213. After the Event (Fundamental: Further Listening 2006).
  214. For All of Us (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).
  215. Casting a Shadow (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).
  216. Miracles (Pop Art: The Hits 2003).
  217. Luna Park (Fundamental 2006).
  218. One Night (Fundamental: Further Listening 2006).
  219. A Powerful Friend (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  220. Living in the Past (Lost 2023).
  221. Blue on Blue (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  222. No Time for Tears (Fundamental: Further Listening 2006).
  223. Axis (Electric 2013).
  224. Kaputnik (Lost 2023).
  225. Legacy (Yes 2009).
  226. Bilingual (Bilingual 1996).
  227. Inner Sanctum (Super 2016).
  228. Betrayed (Bilingual: Further Listening 1996).
  229. Silver Age (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).
  230. Inner Sanctum (Super 2016).
  231. Pazzo! (Super 2016).
  232. The Former Enfant Terrible (Fundamental: Further Listening 2006).
  233. Screaming (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).
  234. Party Song (Release: Further Listening 2002).
  235. Euroboy (Very: Further Listening 1993).
  236. Disco Potential (Bilingual: Further Listening 1996).
  237. Somewhere (Bilingual: Further Listening 1996).
  238. Friendly Fire (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).
  239. Numb (Fundamental 2006).
  240. Discoteca (Bilingual 1996).
  241. What Keeps Mankind Alive (Introspective: Further Listening 1988).
  242. If Love Were All (Very: Further Listening 1993).
  243. Later Tonight (Please 1986).
  244. Wedding in Berlin (Hotspot 2020).
  245. We All Feel Better in the Dark (Behavior: Further Listening 1990).
  246. The Calm Before the Storm (Bilingual: Further Listening 1996).
  247. Violence (Please 1986).
  248. The Way Through the Woods (Elysium: Further Listening 2012).
  249. God Willing (Fundamental 2006).
  250. Ego Music (Elysium 2012).
  251. Shouting in the Evening (Electric 2013).
  252. Lies (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).
  253. Tall Thin Men (Nightlife: Further Listening 1999).

Apparently there's another album on the way, as the Boys started recording it back in March. So I guess I'll be updating this list soon enough.

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Bullet Sunday 811

Posted on Sunday, June 25th, 2023

Dave!Storm clouds are a' brewin' out my window but I'm still blogging... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Storm! No joke. As I started to type this, all the lights in my house that are on a light sensor came on, thunder could be heard in the distance, and my weather station said that there are lightning strikes in the area...

Storm Clouds on the Horizon!

I swear that it was sunny just two minutes ago.

• Spell! In preparation for the new Wham! Documentary that's dropping on Netflix any day now, I've been re-watching all the old Wham! videos. When I got to Wake Me Up Before You Go Go I was shocked to see that Deon Estus was there...

Deon Estus in Wham's Video.

Holy crap! I always knew that Pepsi and Shirlie were backup singers in that video, but I have ZERO memory of Deon Estus being on bass! BUT THERE HE IS! Oh man I loved Deon's album Spell which I listened to constantly. You might remember one of the bigger hits to come off of it, Heaven Help Me...

I was always sad that he never released a follow-up album. And I am very sad now to learn that he died in 2021. He was incredibly talented.

• Strange! New! Different! I'm late to watching the S02E02 Ad Astra Per Aspera episode of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. I remained shocked at just how frickin good this show is. This episode didn't have any space battles or crazy situations... it was 100% a courtroom case. It was Law & Order in space. And yet it was beautiful to see...

Spock getting grilled on the witness stand!

The performances were incredible, as usual... but it was the guest appearance by Yetide Badaki that was the highlight. Holy crap! The ENTIRE EPISODE hinged on her performance, and she did not falter. Amazing, amazing stuff. If you're not watching, you should be. This may very well be my favorite Trek of all.

• Deep Sea Tragedy. James Cameron has one of the few opinions I even care about on any of this Titanic submersible stuff given his massive experience on deep-sea dives... and it's exactly what you'd expect. Those people didn't need to die...

And, like I said a bit ago, billionaires in a preventable situation is still in the news cycle while poor immigrants sinking off the coast of Greece barely gets a mention and is given the "Oh, that's too bad" treatment. Your wealth is directly proportional to your value in this sick, sad world. And that ain't changing any time soon.

• Happy Pride! Crying is gay now? Well, happy Pride to all the gay men who cried when they saw their future wife walk down the aisle at their wedding then. Christ...


Extremely silly stuff on this Monday...

♬ original sound - Jon Spot

Toxic Masculinity at work. The fact that men aren't supposed to have any emotions at all is fucked up beyond all rational thought...

@innova.tuespacio No se a ustedes, pero a mi este compilado que hicimos me emociona! Nada mas lindo que el amor sincero 💍🤍 #casado #casamiento #boda #novios #weddingplanner #ambientaciondeeventos #parati #fyp ♬ Perfect

Repressed emotions aren't healthy. And this kind of anti-male trash being propagated creates an environment which leads nowhere good. Just look at the news from the world today.

• Sandwiches! I'm kinda going through a sandwich renaissance. It started with egg salad sandwiches. Then I moved to (f)BLTC on toast (fake bacon, lettuce, tomato, and cheese). And now I am eating grilled cheddar and cream cheese sandwiches with tomato and pesto.

Sandwiches are awesome! Fried egg Sammies are next on the menu. And I really want to fry up a pizza sandwich one of these days soon.

• Mobile Mobile! So when T-Mobile says that my rate is locked in... and I signed up for their service using ApplePay autopay... and now they’re saying that if I continue to use ApplePay that I will have to pay $5 additional. Isn’t that a breach of contract? I changed nothing from when I signed up and will now have to pay $5 more a month...

T-Mobile says I need to switch to a debit card or I lose my $5 a month discount! FUCKERS!!

Oh how I fucking hate these asshole companies that lie to you when they sign you up and get away with it because they have politicians in their deep pockets. $60 additional a year is not fucking “locking in my rate.” And sugar-coating it with “Well, your base rate is the same, we’re just changing the conditions of your discount” IS STILL CHANGING CONDITIONS OF THE TERMS I WAS GIVEN WHEN I SIGNED UP!! It’s like... “Oh, we mis-promised because expenses are going up, and we are losing money that our CEO needs to fuel his private jet, so how can we squeeze it out of our customers? Oh... by eliminating credit card fees we pay! Genius! Fuck our stupid-ass customers for trusting us! Or CEO needs a new gold-plated toilet for his third house!”

What's interesting is that T-Mobile bought out Mint Mobile. And if I switch to Mint Mobile, I'll pay half of what I pay now. So essentially T-Mobile is going to make a $50 a month customer become a $25 a month customer. OVER $18 A YEAR IN CREDIT CARD FEES?!? Who the fuck is the genius who came up with this money-making scheme? "LET'S MAKE FEWER MORE PROFITABLE CUSTOMERS! THAT'LL MAKE THE MONEY ROLL IN!"

Now, if you'll excuse me, it looks like rain.


Bullet Sunday 816

Posted on Sunday, July 30th, 2023

Dave!It's Sunday. There's bullets. And life goes on... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Why Is The Clicker Called The Clicker? I actually remember this thing! This is a fascinating, fascinating story about the dawn of the television remote control, which went like this (here's a link in case YouTube is being a flaming pile of shit)...

ULTRASONIC?? I had no idea! Seriously, read the story. Worth your valuable time!

• Van Dyke! Speaking of things I had no idea about, here comes this fascinating look at The Dick Van Dyke Show (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...


♬ original sound - Dara Starr Tucker

I love running across stuff like this!

• In Your Love. Christ. Now they're burning Tyler Childers T-shirts on TikTok. Over a music video. Have you ever seen such a fragile group of snowflakes in your life? Guess they gotta act so ridiculously triggered in order to reaffirm their heterosexuality or Christianity or whatever it is they're so pressed about this time (here's a link in case YouTube is being a flaming pile of shit)...

It's a tragic love story that fits the song he wrote. But because it's two guys who fell in love, people are losing their ever-loving minds? For the life on me, I don't understand why people care about things that have zero affect on their lives.

• Thank You! I may have laughed for a solid two minutes after watching this (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@wgnmorningnews #chicagonews #wgnmorningnews #wgnanchor #newsbloopers #blooper #chicago #chicagotiktok ♬ original sound - wgnmorningnews

Jesus. If saying "please" and "thank you" is too much for you to bear, just ignore it.

• Ski! THIS IS WHAT COURAGE LOOKS LIKE! She's in fourth grade! Turn the volume up on this one (here's a link in case YouTube is being a flaming pile of shit)...

Was I the only one holding their breath on this one?

• Spaced. After Anthony Rapp came forward with his story, thirty-some-odd additional men accused Kevin Spacey of sexual assault. He publicly apologized to some of them (including Rapp, who was a 14-year-old boy at the time of the alleged assault), came out as gay as a reason(?) for his "clumsy flirting" (AKA grabbing men's crotches), then said he was going to evaluate his behavior and get treatment. But in court he said that absolutely everything he admitted to and apologized for and "evaluated" was just something his publicist told him to say. Even while he admitted that one of the men who accused him of assault looked uncomfortable as he left.

My opinion of Spacey has nothing to do with "hopping on the condemnation bandwagon." It's thirty-plus accusations and Kevin Spacey's own words I am choosing to listen to. I'm not telling anybody how to feel about the guy... if a victory in court exonerates him of all wrong-doing in your eyes, then you do you... I'm just saying that grabbing men by the crotch is sexual assault every bit as much as if he were to grab women by the crotch, and I am not going to write off thirty men by saying they're overreacting to "clumsy flirting." You might as well be saying that they should be honored that a celebrated and powerful actor like Kevin Spacey would deem them worthy of being molested. I will not do that. I refuse to do that. No matter how "gentle and romantic" Spacey thought it was.

Hope you can enjoy what's left of your Sunday.


It’s The Pop of Death That Kills You

Posted on Wednesday, August 16th, 2023

Dave!NEWSFLASH @ Ars Technica: Sonos has been unable to fix Arc soundbars’ “pop of death” for over 2 years.

Ever since the technology became available for home theaters, I've wanted Dolby Atmos, the specialized sound system which adds a "height" channel to your surround sound setup. So that when you are watching John Wick and it's raining overhead... or a bullet goes flying above you... you hear it happening. It's a very cool effect (when done properly) that adds to the experience of watching movies and television... or listening to Atmos music.

I have been investing in a Sonos speak setup, which has been a pretty good solution for home audio. It's wireless so you don't have to run speaker cables, and you can group some (or all) of your speakers so that your audio is playing everywhere you have a Sonos speaker.

At first I had a Sonos PlayBar. It was an amazing soundbar for under your television. Sure, the separation between Left/Center/Right channels wasn't the best, but it was a darn good effort that I enjoyed for years.

Then Sonos released their Arc soundbar which added the afore-mentioned Dolby Atmos.

I waited for the reviews, heard good things, and bought one.

Then I went to crazy trouble to install it in my living room.

It was okay. The Dolby Atmos height channel was incredibly weak (even when set at full volume) and I don't think the quality was quite up to the standards of the PlayBar, but I was pretty happy with it overall.

Then Sonos released the Era 300, which also had the Dolby Atmos height channel for your rear speakers. This was a far, far better implementation of the Atmos effect, and I was very happy to have purchased them.

Until I wasn't.

One day while watching a movie I heard a massive POP sound and my Arc soundbar went dead. I thought it had died a horrible death... but unplugging it and plugging it back in did the trick. Until I experienced the POP again. And again. And again. And again! Apparently once it happens, it will continue to happen forever.

Sonos's solution is to turn off CRC (which turns on your television when your AppleTV turns on), which didn't work for me. Their next "solution?" Turn off Dolby Atmos. Yes, you read that right, turn off Dolby Atmos.

Now, If Sonos gave any shits at all, they would simply have one of their many users who are experiencing this POP OF DEATH problem send in their AppleTV 4K Gen 3 and Xbox, their television, their cables, and their Arc soundbar (after sending them replacement shit). Then they would have a complete system where they could CONSISTENTLY REPRODUCE THIS PROBLEM. But nope. They'd rather say "Oooh... we can't reproduce the problem!" and do NOTHING. — Every fucking time I've contacted Sonos support, they just tell me to turn off Dolby Atmos, WHICH IS THE ENTIRE FUCKING REASON I BOUGHT THE ARC IN THE FIRST PLACE! More and more I regret getting in bed with a company that doesn't give a shit about shipping a faulty product, and has been promising a fix for OVER TWO YEARS that never comes. Get a system that doesn't work.

I don't care if Sonos comes up with a special cable that filters out the problem... or sends out a firmware update... or offers to replace whatever component they can't work out with something that does... or whatever... so long as they actually come up with a fucking solution that doesn't involve turning off Atmos!

This is not fucking rocket science.

NASA could build a rocket in this amount of time.


Bullet Sunday 820

Posted on Sunday, September 3rd, 2023

Dave!Dreaming of a Cheeseburger in Paradise while blogging for my own amusement... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Bunny Boo Berry! You're welcome (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@xiaoyciz7o4 Little rabbit eats blueberries#rabbit #pet #cute #fyp #foryou ♬ original sound - Cute little pet

Baby animals... amirite?

• Medal Medal Chicken Dinner! This Sunday's burn provided by Andy Murray from a 2016 interview that's making its rounds around the interwebs again...

Class. Act.

• Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo! People are aghast when I tell them that I got my hair cut at Disney World. "YOU WASTED TIME AT A BARBER SHOP INSTEAD OF RIDING THE ATTRACTIONS?!?" And it's like... I ended up at Disney World 3-4 times a year every year for over a decade with my work. I've done all the rides many, many times. And I was always booked in one of the Disney hotels, so if I was too busy to get a haircut back home, where else was I going to go? Take a pricey taxi into Orlando? Of course not. I'd just go to where I was at (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@pincessshannon Nick FINALLY got a haircut because i convinced him to get one in Magic Kingdom!!! 😆🤩 YAY! Can you believe you can get a haircut in Disney World? So cute with all the toddlers getting first haircuts too 🥹 #disneyworld #magickingdom #disneyhaircut #harmonybarbershop #disneyworldtipsandtricks ♬ original sound - Pincessshannon

And, yes, my friends convinced me to get the glitter once. It didn't look biodegradable, so I took a pass every other time... even though it made me look fabulous.

• Margaritaville! Jimmy Buffet passed. He was one of those rare figures who are so ingrained into American culture that you know him even if you don't realize it. His music is pervasive, yes, but it's his lyrics that hold a wisdom everybody can relate to. "I’d rather die while I’m living than live while I’m dead" and "We are the people our parents warned us about" and "Wrinkles will only go where the smiles have been" can be found on the walls of his Margaritaville restaurants, but aren't exclusive to parrotheads (Buffet fans). I've actually been to many Margaritavilles, because Jimmy always had some good vegetarian options on the menu. I know I just posted this video by Eddy Burback a month ago, but it's a pretty cool look at the restaurants.

Jimmy had a crazy amount of songs I liked, but whenever I'm trying to zero in on a favorite, my mind keeps going back to One Particular Harbor...

Yeah, that's a classic right there. Rest in Peace, Jimmy.

• Harley Forever! Arleen Sorkin died! My mom was a big Days of Our Lives fan and she played Calliope... but it was her work as the voice of the original Harley Quinn that I knew her best...

Harley Quinn with a Joker Grenade!

Paul Dini (who created the character) was a college friend, and based the character on her. That's an incredible legacy. Rest In Peace.

• He'll Bore Every One of Us! So... The Flash is free to watch on HBO and I've had it on while I was working...

The Flash Movie Poster.

I can't believe that people liked this movie. IT'S COMPLETE SHIT! Alternate Barry is fucking annoying. Unwatchable. The special effects are horrible. The character isn't even consistent with the shitty JLA stuff that Zack Snyder crapped out of his ass. How this got 64% on Rotten Tomatoes is beyond my ability to fathom. I sure hope that this box office failure means we'll never see Ezra-Flash again. And the box office failure of Shazam means we'll never see Zachary-Shazam either. Just flush the Snyderverse down the toilet and have Gunn ignore all of it. This movie cost TWO HUNDRED MILLION DOLLARS! The first Avengers movie cost $220 Million, and most of THAT went to the cast. So what the hell? Where is the money on this one? There were exactly two things worth watching. Michael Keaton Batman and Sasha Calle Supergirl. But neither made this worth my valuable time.

• Marcie! the new Marcie Peanuts special on Apple TV is fantastic... and looks visually stunning. So much better than the gawdawful Snoopy in Space or whatever that was...

Marcie and Pepermint Patty on the golf course.

Marcie and Pepermint Patty on the golf course.

Marcie and Pepermint Patty on a bench.

I hope we get more like this..

Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes. Until next Sunday.


Explicitly Musically Disruptive and Subversive

Posted on Wednesday, September 13th, 2023

Dave!Today's extra has naughty music videos. If you're sensitive to explicit sexual content (in a bad way) then please, for God's sake, don't press play on them.

Maybe it's the anarchist in me, but I relish the disruptive subversion of type. Really I do. And in all of its forms. Political disruptive subversion is my favorite, because I just love it when that rare politician decides to fuck over the establishment to actually live up to the ideal of a government of the people, by the people, for the people. When they're telling lobbyists and corporate political owners to fuck off, I'm... dare I say it... gleeful. And how could I not be? That's America right there.

Disruptive subversion is fantastic when it comes to art. Some of the best art comes out of playing against types and norms of the day. It's wonderful when it comes to food. This is how vegetarians like me end up with so many terrific culinary options rather than just having to stick with a salad. Cinematic disruption has lead to groundbreaking trends that keep us from being stuck in thematic ruts. The list goes on and on.

But this post is going to be about disruptive subversion when it comes to music.

I'm a huge, huge fan.

It's how I got into punk. It's what drove me to appreciate metal. It's how I ended up a fan of old-school rap. Using music to throw a middle finger to establishment is a time-honored tradition. Not just in the USA, but in countries around the globe. If there's a protest against something, you can bet that somebody somewhere has used music to lash out.

Which brings us to Dixon Dallas.

Last night I was scrolling through TikTok while waiting for an important email response to come through. Then proceeded to fall down a rabbit hole of epic proportions because of a song called Good Lookin' by the afore-mentioned Dixon Dallas.

The videos below are not just "Not Safe For Work"... they could very well be "Not Safe For Anywhere." You've been warned...

Now, there's a lot to unpack here.

First of all, I have listened to music of all genres where there's been explicit sexual content. There are rap artists built on the concept. But this is the first time I've ever heard explicitly gay sexual content.

My first reaction was to laugh. It was such a shock as to feel like parody. Except... Dixon Dallas seems like he's playing it straight. So to speak. He wasn't making fun of the idea of gay sex, he was singing about explicit sex that just happened to be with a man.

Which took me back two years ago to this sexually explicit country song by Trey Lewis, which is arguably far more raunchy than Dixon Dallas. But it doesn't get the same harsh reaction because it's not gay...

Country music is being pushed into territory that's far beyond the boundaries it started with. Country used to be regional, then it went global. Country used to be all-white, then we got loads of non-white country artists. Country used to be straight, then along comes k.d. Lang, T.J. Osbourne, Brandi Carlile, Lil Gas X, Orville Peck, and many more... and then it isn't.

It should come as a surprise to absolutely nobody that there are calls to cancel Dixon Dallas. But you might be surprised to find that some of the calls for cancelation are coming from the gay community.

Buckle up, because here's where it starts getting strange.

Because Dixon Dallas is not Dixon Dallas. Dixon Dallas is a character played by musician Jake Hill.

Jake Hill crosses all genres, having released songs in rap, rock, metal, punk, pop, and now country. Many times these songs are focused on queer love and gay sex. And that's where the questions start. Is he a straight guy queerbaiting the gay community? Is he a straight guy making fun of the gay community? Is he gay? Bisexual? Well, according to this interview I found with his Dixon Dallas alter-ego, he says that it doesn't matter what he is, that his music speaks for itself, and he's not commenting on his sexuality right now (though apparently he was linked to a girlfriend at some point)...

He says "My music is kinda a big fuck you to my past," which is the Conservative South he grew up in. And that's why he does it. He's being a disruptive subversion to country music which, as I've made clear, is something I value highly. So good on him.

And his songs, as gay and explicit as they may be, are damn catchy...

People are going to feel about Dixon Dallas however they're going to feel. From what I can tell, his motives seem genuine (and he's genuinely talented), regardless of what his sexuality might be and who he really is. But if you want to feel that he should be canceled because he's too gay, too filthy, too explicit, or too offensive to country music... you do you, I guess.

As for me?

Keep being a good kind of disruptor, Mr. Dallas.

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Bullet Sunday 823

Posted on Sunday, September 24th, 2023

Dave!Summer is gone. Fall is here. But not everything is getting colder... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Sloth! Maybe the sweetest thing you'll see all day...

Now that's a grateful mom.

• Name! Maybe the coolest thing you'll see all day...

• Death Cab for Postal Service! The Postal Service and Death Cab For Cutie are on tour... which I already would love to see. AND THEN...

Depeche Mode's influence is a joyful thing to see. If only old Depeche Mode was more influential on new Depech Mode.

• And Cake! I knew that Fiona and Cake was going to be glorious... the bizarre, weird, wonderful world of Adventure Time couldn't HELP but be glorious... but it's so much more than that...

I honestly don't understand how they come up with this stuff. Every detail is sweated to a ridiculous degree. Cake the Cat is more like a cat than a real cat.

• YAS, QUEEN! I need to start carrying one around in my pocket! (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@texasbeeworks #bees #nature #summer #tiktok #fyp ♬ original sound - Erika Thompson

That could never be me. But I find Bee TikTok to be fascinating.

• Swim Creative! He looks so happy. But I’d probably look that happy if I were going to be gettin’ some too! (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@creaturevids Part 1: Puffer Fish Constructs A Masterpiece of Love #love #pufferfish #ocean #fypシ゚viral #animals #fish ♬ original sound - CreatureVids

Good fishy.

• Still Disgusting! Good job Michigan on banning child marriage! They've done more than Washington State has. If you want to marry a child in this state that's 17, all you have to do is get parental permission. ANY AGE LESS THAN THAT just requires a redneck judge to sign off on it. ANY. AGE. Want to marry a 10 year old? You can in Washington State if you find the right judge! 5 year old? Cool beans if you find the right judge! — This is categorically fucking disgusting. And if you read into this, it goes much deeper than the creep factor of an adult being able to marry a child. Children often cannot get support for domestic violence from a spouse... they get turned away at shelters because they can be "unsafe for children." WAY TO GO WASHINGTON STATE! Any of our legislators want to fucking DO something about this? Nah. They got lobbyist dicks to suck for cash. Fucking assholes. Not only should every last one of these mother fuckers who aren't ACTIVELY WORKING TO CHANGE THIS be removed from office... they should be thrown in fucking jail. I am NOT kidding. This is gross negligence and party to child sexual abuse of a minor.

And now I'm off to clean my kitchen.


Bullet Sunday 824

Posted on Sunday, October 1st, 2023

Dave!Don't mind the mess... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Forty-Nine! Even if you don't care about baseball, this short video will tell you why Tim Wakefield's passing is such a blow to Red Sox Nation. He was an absolute inspiration, on and off the field, and I loved watching the guy play...

And this video goes into a little more depth on his remarkable career and that incredible knuckleball...

Rest in peace, sir.

• Swiftly! The ongoing saga of the (possible!) romance between Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce is something to behold. First he tells the world that he was bummed she didn't want to talk to him after her show that he went to because she's saving her voice. Apparently he had a friendship bracelet he wanted to give her with his number on it (friendship bracelets are a very Taylor Swift thing now, apparently). This was discussed on the podcast he has with his brother Jason. Which I've queued up here:

Adorable. But, I mean, it's Taylor Swift. There's no man on earth who woldn't want to take a shot. AND THEN... Taylor Swift broke the internet when she showed up at a Chiefs/Bears game... sitting in the Kelce box with Travis's mom!

Taylor at the Chief's game... Part One

Suddenly Kelce jersey's were sold out everywhere as Taylor Swift fans snapped them up at a record pace. But this could have just been a publicity stunt. At least until she showed up at the Jets/Chiefs game (with Sophie Turner, Blake Lively, AND RYAN REYNOLDS...

Taylor at the Chief's game... Part Two

So now? Well... let's just say that this tweet pretty much sums it up...

Taylor Swift, dating an American footballer is literally like the declaration of independence. free from the shackles of British colonialism! This is the moment.

"British Colonialism" being a not-so-thinly-veiled reference to Taylor's previous brief relationship with The 1975's lead singer Matty Healy.

• If Karma Was My Boyfriend... The entirety of that last bullet was to set up my sharing Young Jeffrey's latest song parody (of Swift's Karma, here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@brookeandjeffrey The entire internet is talking about Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce. But is anybody SINGING about it yet? Instead of Taylor Swift's "Karma" it's Young Jeffrey's "Travis Is My Guy Friend." #TaylorSwift #Taylorsversion #TravisKelce #EraTours #traviskelce #parody #brookeandjeffrey ♬ Karma (feat. Ice Spice) - Taylor Swift

I don't know how Young Jeffrey pulls this off week after week. But it keeps me tuning in to KQMV Seattle, so whatever keeps him going, it's definitely getting listeners.

• Karma! If you're unfamiliar with the original song being parodied, this one's for you...

The video is a whole other bit of drama because it features the Ice Spice remix instead of the album version. Many speculate this was damage control for an insult that Matty Healy made towards Ice Spice (he being the previous Swift beau, aren't you keeping up?).

• Twilight! Meanwhile... back to the Kelce Brothers... I listen to their podcast every once in a while, and this is the madness that was the last one I heard...

When I looked this up to see if it was on YouTube, I wasn't aware that there was a video of Travis reacting. His pain is palpable. This is how I look when somebody talks to me about Harry Potter.

• Underwater! Map Men has another fascinating video out. This time talking about the internet...

I admit that the line from Texas to Louisiana got me. It doesn't seem like the best route for that would be underwater.

• NEWSFLASH! Conspiracy theories about FEMA’s Oct. 4 emergency alert test spread online. Uh huh. I just knew I wouldn't be able to get the latest COVID vaccination in peace. There's always people telling me I'm "going to die." Every. Fucking. Time. And this time it's from a FEMA Alert tone. The same damn test tone that they've been using since the 60's... but now is when they will be activating secret nanobots that have been introduced into vaccines? Jesus. It's a wonder that these conspiracy nut jobs have the brain power to breathe and tie their shoelaces. I mean, come on, I'm on COVID vaccination No. 6 AND STILL HAVEN'T DIED YET. But any day now, I'm sure.

And there's your bullets, my fellow Swifties.


I’m on my way I’m making it…

Posted on Monday, October 9th, 2023

Dave!I've always been a Peter Gabriel fan. So when my long-time blogging friend, Jester, asked if I would go to see him perform live in Seattle, I jumped on the opportunity.

It was so much more than a concert though. It was more like art from the jump. A countdown clock was projected on the stage where a worker progressively erased the hands and drew new ones to tell the time...

A man behnd a clock face drawing the hands of the clock.

And then the show was on...

Peter Gabriel singing Big Time.

Screens with a robot head and two robot hands flipping a bird.

Ghost images on screens in front of rainbow lighting.

Peter Gabriel and his band taking a bow in front of a lot of eyeballs projected on screens for the song In Your Eyes.

Peter Gabriel singing in front of a blood red background.

I honest to Betsy don’t understand how Peter Gabriel sounds just as good as he did 40 years ago. The guy is 73 years old and killing it. I was expecting his voice to have weakened after all these years, but nope! Here is him performing his hit Sledgehammer now...

Vs. when the song debuted, shown here with the groundbreaking video that Peter Gabriel unleashed back in 1986 (which won nine MTV Music Awards...

Incredible. Interesting to note that portions of the video were made by by Nick Park (of Aardman Animations fame) and had Peter Gabriel being "animated" frame-by-frame for 16 hours while laying under a sheet of glass.

But anyway...

The concert itself was three hours long divided into two parts by an intermission. Which is to say that Gabriel was essentially his own opening act. In what was a very odd choice, he decided to fill the show not with his biggest hits (although some of them were in there, including Sledgehammer*, In Your Eyes**, and Solsbury Hill***)... but with all the tracks from his forthcoming album, i/o, which accounted for a full half of the songs he performed. I'm guessing only a handful of people in the audience had heard the few tracks that got released earlier this year (on each full moon). But, for the most part, these were songs nobody had any experience with what-so-ever.

I was okay with it. Some of them I really liked (Live and Let Live is a wonderfully upbeat track that I loved). The one misstep was the song, And Still, which he wrote for his mother, which ground the set to a screeching halt. It was a lovely song, but horribly out of place. Maybe if he had put it somewhere else in the setlist?

There were people in attendance, however, who did not feel the same as I did.

A couple sitting to our right and three people sitting in the row ahead of us decided to bail at half-time. Apparently a self-declared Peter Gabriel "super-fan" to our right was furious that she had spent money for tickets and called the show "awful" before leaving. Which is to say that she thought it was awful because Gabriel didn't play the songs she wanted to hear (Jester noted "She was probably only familiar with the album 'So' and was mad that she only got two tracks from it (of the five total that he played)." And it's like... well... okay. But the insanity of it all still doesn't process in my brain.

Would I have love love loved to have heard him perform my favorite song, While the Earth Sleeps... a collaboration with Deep Forest for the movie Strange Days (which is the best closing credits song ever made)? Of course I would! I would have lost my mind. But was I going to storm out of the concert in protest? Oh fuck no...

We did get to hear his collaboration with Kate Bush, Don't Give Up though. Unfortunately Kate Bush was not available to perform it with him, so he did it with one of his backup singers (Ayanna Witter-Johnson) and she slayed the part. It was gorgeous...

Peter Gabriel singing Don't Give Up.

A woman substituting for Kate Bush and just killing it.

But anyway... wonderful concert...

The concert is over and only the blood red circle remains.

In addition to Peter Gabriel telling a bit of a story between songs that wove them all together in an entertaining way and promoting his humanitarian outlook on the planet... each song was accompanied with a great visual art piece. And, in a refreshing bit of acknowledgement, he actually gave a shoutout to the artist each time!

After all is said and done, I am thrilled that I finally got to see peter Gabriel perform live. I was going to take a pass because... well... COVID... but I honestly don't know if he will ever tour again at this scale. So it was very much worth it. I'm fully-six-times-vaxed, and if I die then I die, I guess...

Seattle's Climate Pledge Arena in Seattle... emptying out as everybody leaves.

And what a way to go.


*This Sledgehammer anecdote from Harry Styles while talking to Howard Stern about working in Peter Gabriel's recording studio is so great. "Everybody does it"...

**In Your Eyes is a song which has deep meaning to my friends group, and the arrangement that we got was sublime.

***I didn't know that Solsbury Hill was an actual place until I was riding on the bus back from Stonehenge in England and it was pointed out to me.

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Bullet Sunday 826

Posted on Sunday, October 15th, 2023

Dave!Fall has come and the weather is dreary and cold, but it's warm in my heart... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• The Price of Cinema is Too Damn High! I loved Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning, Part One. It is smart, exciting, and I can't wait for Part Two. What gets me is that the movie cost $291 MILLION to make. And while I'm not staying that it wasn't money well-spent (this movie is insane)... I am saying that it's $567 million box office means that the movie barely made any money after promotion. If it made any money at all...

They seriously need to stop making movies that cost these utterly bonkers amount of money. It is totally fucking up the industry, and failures like this (and so many other... The Flash, Fast X, Indiana Jones, to name some) are going to make it so that studio movies die a horrible death. That's no fun for any of us. Surely they can be more clever with less money? Because this just isn't sustainable any more.

• Fantasy Football! I remember when The League first debuted. It was amazing to me that it managed to make it on the air given how raunchy it was. But it endured for seven seasons, and I was a huge fan for the first four seasons. A fan for the fifth and sixth season. And was still watching for the final season, although it most definitely did not go out on a high note...

As I mentioned on Wednesday, I've been rewatching all the episodes on Hulu. Now that I have some distance from the end of the series, I cannot help but wonder if they came back for an 8th season what that would be like. I honestly don't know... but it seems like it would be a worthwhile thing to take a look at.

• On the Other Hand... The new Frasier is kinda... not great. It's nowhere near the level of Cheers and Frasier and I'm wondering why this was the direction they took. I mean, it's not as tragic as some of the reviews made it out to be. They tried to get some heart into it and there are funny moments despite itself. But all I feel while watching it is wanting to go re-watch the original Frasier and also rewatch Deception to see Jack Cutmore-Scott in something that was actually good and Sirens so I could see Kevin Daniels in something good. At least that way I won't have to see "David" be a horrific substitute for "Niles"... it's like he's there JUST to be unfunny and cringe.

Will & Grace managed to come back as good as it ever was... but too many of these revivals just aren't working. But because I loved the original Frasier I'm going to keep watching in the hopes that the show finds its footing. Because I'm watching the very first episode of the first Frasier and it was absolute gold from the jump.

• Hot Sauce! I love hot sauce. I started with the mild green sauce that my mom loved (something I still eat on tacos when I make them at home, because it's the flavor I'm used to. Later I moved on to Tabasco, which has more heat and a vinegar tang that makes it a delicious addition to everything from sauces to potato salad. Now I split my time between Tabasco, Cholula, and Sriracha. They are similar enough that I can use them interchangeably, but different enough that I prefer them for specific foods (occasionally I pick up a bottle of Frank's RedHot, which is not so hot, and Tapatío as well). Last year I was trying to save money, so I started keeping track of which brand I use most. I thought it would be Tabasco, but it ended up being Cholula because it has a bit more heat. So now I buy just that one sauce to save money so I'm not buying three and four. AND THEN... I decided to try something hotter. So now I'm addicted to El Yucateco Red...

A case of El Yucateco Red

It's more than just "hot" because it still adds nice flavor (unlike the hotter sauces I've tried where I can't even taste anything but fire). And now I'm wondering if I've reached my hot sauce limit? Or eventually will this not be hot enough either? Because it's only 5,790 on the Scoville scale, and that's barely hitting the second of ten sauces if I ever end up on an episode of Hot Ones (which tops out at 2,000,000 on the Scoville scale). Which is a great excuse to post the SNL parody, which is one of my favorites...

That never gets old.

• Shoresy Deux! One of the biggest surprises last year was the Letterkenny spin-off, Shoresy. It was rediculously entertaining, and ended up being my fifth favorite show of 2022. And now it's coming back...

Reeeeally looking forward to it.

• J-Boy! So there I was watching the movie Robots

on Hulu (Prime in the UK). It's okay. Not as good as I was hoping for, but funny in places and fairly entertaining in concept...

The best part of the movie for me was the end-credits song called J-Boy by the band Phoenix. From six years ago...

I liked the song enough that I decided to add it to my Sonos music queue.

• Whither Sonos! Except I couldn't add the song to my fucking Sonos music queue because on top of having shitty fucking products that they don't want to fix... their apps are fucking shitty too. First of all my MacOS app decided it wouldn't do shit until my Apple Music account was reauthorized...

Shitty fucking Sonos app telling me that I need to fucking reauthorize my account.



But of course the "Let's fix it" link was full of shit. After trying that three times, Sonos finally wanted me to turn EVERY FUCKING SPEAKER OFF AND BACK ON...

Turn these off and back on.

That didn't work, so I ended up being told that I had to turn the router off and back on...

Turn these off and back on.

That didn't fucking work either, so I was told to turn all my shit off and on again. I ignored that and decided to uninstall Sonos and reinstall it again. That finally worked. EXCEPT... then I got an ad for Sonos's "Live Gift Guide Event" that I could not dismiss. There's no cancel button. There's no close button. You can't tap around it to get out of it. I couldn't even reboot the app and get rid of it. I was forced to "add it to my calendar" (which I didn't actually do)...

Add out event to your calendar!

Fuck Sonos. Fuck them up their piece of shit useless asses. I regret EVER getting involved with them and their shitty products. Maybe I'd feel different if they'd AT THE VERY LEAST make it so that I could use the fucking Dolby Atmos that I paid to get without having my Arc soundbar fail. But nope. It's been a problem for two years and Sonos is still "working on it." Except they're fucking not because I've heard of nobody being asked to send in their system parts so Sonos could watch it fucking happen. Jesus what an asshole company.

And on that happy note... I'm back to dreary weather for a dreary Sunday.


Bullet Sunday 828

Posted on Sunday, October 29th, 2023

Dave!Last night I watched the three episodes of The West Wing with Matthew Perry, then fell asleep watching Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. This morning I woke up and started getting ready for work until I realized that it was Sunday. This really sucks. For all I know Matthew Perry would have never done another project ever. He hadn't done movies or television in years... six years according to IMDB. But there was always a chance he would return. And now there's just the past. After I realized I didn't have to go to work I watched the Nate Bargatze episode of SNL. It was hilarious and brilliant as I knew it would be, and I was able to escape the world for a while. Until there was a title card in memoriam of Matthew Perry at the end and there I was back in the world again. I don't know if I have the headspace to watch my favorite episodes of Friends. David Schwimmer may have been closer to David Simmer in name, but Chandler Bing was where I lived. This really, really sucks.... but an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now... anyway...

• Matthew Perry. This will sound like heresy, but as much as I love Chandler Bing... my favorite Matthew Perry character is a tie between Joe Quincy (The West Wing) and Matt Albie (Sunset 60 on the Sunset Strip)...

The guy was phenomenally talented, and was able to play so much more than slapsticky, over-exaggerated roles (as much as he excelled at them). It's always been sad to me that he had such a hard time finding material to match his talent. He should have been in series and movies as good as The West Wing and Studio 60 constantly. Rest In Peace, sir.

• Saturday Night! I don't have access to live television, so I had to wait until this morning to see Nate Bargatze's hosting gig on Saturday Night Live. I am a huge, huge fan and had been looking forward to it all week. I'm guessing it was a last-minute substtution because Nate Bargatze canceled a week of shows in order to appear. And people love the guy so much that nobody was mad. They were thrilled that he got such an opportunity. And, as expected, he was incredible. His opening monologue started off a bit rough, but he quickly found his footing and killed it...

His sketches were amazing and I was wishing the show was three hours longer...

Nate as George Washington

Nate as a Southern Rocker

Absolutely incredible that his comedy is clean. He doesn't have to curse to be funny. Let me rephrase that, he doesn't have to curse to be hilarious. If you haven't checked out his specials on Netflix, I'd recommend starting with The Tennessee Kid, which is one of the funniest things I've ever seen.

• Cat Daddy! Hey! It's National Cat Dad Day today! This is the look I got when I tried to explain it all...

Jake and Jenny on the bed with me...

Not the reaction I was hoping for, so I tried to explain it again...

Jake and Jenny asleep on the cat tree, their backs to me.

What they're saying in this photo is “Happy National Cat Dad Day, dad!” “Yeah! Thanks for everything you do for us, dad!” “Love you, dad!” — Or so I’m guessing.

• Bodies. I just finished the Netflix adaptation of Bodies and loved it. One of my favorite shows of 2023 for sure. It's different than the graphic novel in many ways, but it's still totally brilliant...

The changes they made are actually very smart and make the show more accessible and less weird. If you watched the Netflix show and enjoyed it, I encourage you to pick up the original graphic novel, which is due to be reprinted and released at the end of the month. I was saddened to learn that the creator/writer of the series, Si Spencer, died in 2021. The first episode was dedicated to his memory.

• Freddy! Seeing Jack Cutmore-Scott on Frasier has me running back to watch him in Deception... one of my favorite shows ever...

It's sad that they canceled the show after one season. It's criminal that they ended it on a cliffhanger and didn't bother to wrap it up with a movie or second season. Even so, it's worth a watch.

• Girl You Know It's True! Say what you like about Milli Vanilli... even though the guys on the cover didn't sing the songs (John Davis, Brad Howell, Jodie Rocco, and Linda Rocco did that)... their music was darn good. And the story behind the guys on the cover has been released as a Netflix documentary...

It's a good documentary, and paints a sympathetic picture of how something can snowball out of control when massive success happens. If you're an 80's music fan, this is a decent watch.

• King! Hasan Minhaj is the choice to host The Daily Show. Period. Full stop. But bigotry can't allow a Brown Muslim person to have a platform, and he was reportedly the front-runner for the job, so The New Yorker craps out a hit-piece which went way, way beyond the scope of an article explaining how a comedian weaves stories to do their job. But NOOOOOO... they had an agenda in mind. How many movies are "based on a true story" but changes events to tell a better story? ALL OF THEM. THAT'S HOW MANY. Otherwise they would be a DOCUMENTARY. Comedians have to do the same job to entertain people as movie writers, and they change events ALL THE TIME to do that. But Minhaj is an uppity Brown Muslim who dares to speak out on racism and create stories around events he endured, and we can't let that stand. Perfectly okay for legions of white comedians to expand, exaggerate, and reframe events for their jokes. Unacceptable for Hasan Minhaj. Wish I could say I'm surprised. BECAUSE THAT WAS THE ENTIRE FUCKING POINT OF "HOMECOMING KING," WHICH IS EASILY ONE OF THE BEST STAND-UP PERFORMANCES EVER CREATED. But here we are... Hasan Minhaj Offers Detailed Response to New Yorker Story: “It Was So Needlessly Misleading.

Onward and upward. See you with more bullets next week.


The Eras Tour (But Not Really)

Posted on Friday, November 3rd, 2023

Dave!I never thought much about Taylor Swift. But, as I said about the "Gold Digging Marxist" in a previous entry, I became a fan after her album 1989, and have enjoyed her music.

Now, there's no way I can afford to see her in concert (tickets are going for thousands if you're not one of the lucky ones who can manage to get a ticket when they go on sale), but I have watched the video releases of her tours for 1989 and Reputation that were enjoyable. So when my sister asked if I wanted to drive over and watch her Eras tour at a movie theater, I was all-in...

Taylor Swift Eras Tour Movie Poster

A couple things...

First of all, I thought that it was "Eras" as in the name of a Greek god or something. Maybe I was thinking of "Eos" who is "goddess of the dawn." But it's "Eras" as in plural of "era"... because the tour celebrates the many eras of Taylor Swift's music.

Second of all, it's absolutely bizarre to me how this tour movie was released while the tour is still going on. She's still got dates for Brazil, Asia, Europe left. Even a few US and Canada dates at the end of 2024. I think she did it because many (most?) of her fans were not able to get tickets, releasing the movie will in no way affect attendance, and she gets more money if she strikes while the iron is hot. So why not?

But anyway...

Taylor plays songs from all of her commercial albums, albeit out of order: Lover, Fearless, Evermore, Reputation, Speak Now, Red, Folklore, 1989, and Midnights. She also has a couple acoustic "surprise songs" that changes at each venue. The movie is a combination of the six shows filmed at the L.A. stop, which means you get Our Song and You're on Your Own, Kid. This was a huge, huge bummer to me... because the L.A. stop had both Dress and New Romantics as "surprise songs," and I really wish they had used those. Mostly because New Romantics is my favorite Taylor Swift song. Oh well. If she was smart, she'd release a video film of just the "surprise songs" from the tour. She'd made a million off something like that too.

As I expected after watching her previous concert movies, The Eras Tour is excellent. She is a brilliant performer, the stage show looks incredible, and the footage was very well shot. It's incredible to watch her playing to 70,000 people and holding the entirety of that vast audience in the palm of her hand the entire time. I seriously don't understand how she does it. I would walk out on stage... shit my pants immediately... then run away crying. But she puts 1000% into the entire performance, which much be exhaustive...

Taylor performing in the Eras Tour movie.

Taylor performing in the Eras Tour movie.

Taylor performing in the Eras Tour movie.

The amazing thing about Taylor is that she's always putting a shit-load of money into her stage show. for the 1989 tour, her massive stage runway would elevate and rotate out above the audience. For the Reputation stadium tour she had three separate stages that she rotates through. For the Eras tour she has this cool extended state which has a section that seamlessly elevates to different heights in different configuations. I think the the most fantastic live performer is Pink, but Taylor Swift is darn close. You cannot go to her show and not be entertained.

So, yeah, if you're a Taylor Swift fan, I don't need to tell you to go see the movie. You've probably already been.


Now and Then and Now

Posted on Thursday, November 9th, 2023

Dave!As a huge Beatles fan, I've been looking forward to their latest (and last) release. But unlike last time where only John's contribution was recorded (Free As A Bird and Real Love were constructed from John's demo recordings with the other members singing/playing over them), this time George is gone as well. But he had already recorded some work on it, so here we are..

There's a very interesting "making of" video that explains how this was even possible...

It's a nice track... but isn't really The Beatles. At least not to me. Half of the equation was missing, meaning the collaboration wasn't interactive. Still... better than nothing.

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Bullet Sunday 830

Posted on Sunday, November 12th, 2023

Dave!Officially entering the holiday season, not that it'll keep me away... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• This is EARTH! sigh. I love love love the YouTube channel Kurzgesagt. They tackle fascination topics in a highly educational and entertaining way. And now there's this absolutely brilliant new video. They have condensed the 4.5 billion year history of planet earth in exactly one hour. And guess when humans appear in that hour? Helpful hint... don't blink...

It's had it running last night on the television while I was working. I found myself looking up to watch more often than I expected.

• POIROT! Here's the thing. I thought the Albert Finney original Murder on the Orient Express was better than the Kenneth Branagh remake. I thought the Peter Ustinov original Death on the Nile was VASTLY superior to the Kenneth Branagh remake (indeed, it's one of my favorite films). But I still enjoyed Branagh's take on Poirot, so I just watched A Haunting in Venice. This one I liked a lot...

My mom read all the Agatha Christie books, so I ended up reading all of them as well. I don't remember the book Hallowe'en Party much... but I do remember not thinking much of the BBC adaptation, feeling they were scraping the bottom of the barrel with this one. The Branagh version wisely makes a very loose adaptation with A Haunting in Venice and the movie is far better because of it. I really hope we get a fourth film where they try something unique... and adapt it to be as interesting as this one.

• Reacher Deux! The second season of Reacher cannot get here fast enough. The first season was one of the best things to happen to my television last year...

I haven't read all the Jack Reacher novels, but I've read enough that it's shocking how much more faithful the Amazon Prime series is to the Tom Cruise movies (though, I liked those also, if I'm being honest).

• Falling! I watched the occasional episode of The Fall Guy but was never so much into the show that I gave a thought to a movie adaptation. Until I saw it was starring Ryan Gosling and Emily Blunt!

This movie looks entertaining as hell.

• DAFUQ? I had absolutely no idea (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@howardsternshow Barbra Streisand on Being the Inspiration for Aerosmith’s “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” #howardstern #SternShow #thehowardsternshow #howardsternshow #fyp #BarbraStreisand #JamesBrolin #Aerosmith @AerosmithOfficial @Howard Stern ♬ original sound - The Howard Stern Show

I wonder if James Brolin gets any bank off that song?

• DAK! All throughout high school I was addicted to the DAK catalog which had really good deals on electronics, computers, and media. It was kinda a weird concept... the owner (Drew Alan Kaplan) hunted down products which were made wrong or had some cosmetic detail that was off or whatever, bought the entire lot, then offered them at a consumer-direct discount price. I couldn't afford to buy lots of stuff... I was in high school... but I obsessed over every new catalog that arrived. And now those catalogs have been scanned and archived by Cabel Sasser on his site...

DAK Catalog Page

This one is my favorite... turn your tiny blurry television into a bigger blurry television with this fresnel lens!

DAK Catalog Page

• Pander! I finally remembered to watch the new South Park special on Paramount+... Into the Panderverse... and it's pretty epic. I am 1000% onbord for inclusivity and diversity in entertainment. It keeps things fresh and interesting, because how many times do we want to see the same old shit with straight white people? But the problem is that remaking the same old shit and substituting non-straight-white-people for straight white people is a stupid, lazy way of creating inclusivity and diversity. It completely ignores the lived experience of non-straight-white-people by copy-pasting them into a straight-white experience, and the movie/television studios need to do better than that. Because it's getting boring as hell.

Plus it's got Kathleen Kennedy and her massive ego in it! Though it's fake Kathleen Kennedy, so any hopes of her taking time out from completely fucking up LucasFilm/Disney were shortlived. Unfortunately, there it a downside to this episode. Gino Carano is using it to extend her 15 minutes.

Enjoy whatever remains of your Sunday, everybody.


Bullet Sunday 831

Posted on Sunday, November 19th, 2023

Dave!Snow is inching closer, but I'm not pulling the shovel out just yet... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Holiday Trooper! I've been sending care packages to the troops through for years. This is another program that's very cool because it doesn't cost you a dime! Just choose the four treats you want to send overseas, write a message of support, and Crown Royal will send it!

Crown Royal for the Troops!

I wish more organizations would do something like this.

• Catventure! Mr. Kitters has many adventures (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)... Places to go and people to meet. 🐈 #fyp #cat #meow ♬ original sound - Mr. Kitters the Cat

Surprisinly, I haven't seen Mr. Kitters ripping apart some poor bird. Thank heavens.

• Murder! There I was, just starting A Murder at the End of the World on Hulu. The main character is driving in a car with her boyfriend and they are singing along to No More I Love You's by Annie Lennox... and I know this will be a show that's something truly special. Honestly, they could have just released this scene as a commercial for the series and I would be all in. But there's so much more to it, and I can't wait for the remaining five episodes to drop...

The cast is amazing on top of it all. I just hope they stick the landing.

• Killer! Every time I see yet another brilliant film by David Fincher, I am mad all over again that he never got to make the sequels to The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, which remains one of my favorite films of all time. Though, while we're on the subject, a sequel to The Killer on Netflix would be fantastic, because this was a darn enjoyable flick...

A poster for The Killer starring Michael Fassbender!

ALTHOUGH... a better use of the money would be for Netflix (who has an existing relationship with Fincher AND Daniel Craig) to get the rights to The Girl Who Played with Fire and The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest. Just sayin'.

• What Was I Made For? People saying that Billy Eilish is untalented makes me laugh and laugh and laugh. She's not entirely my thing... but I love this song... and listening to her brother explain how they created it should put the nail in the coffin of the idea that anybody could crap out the music they make. A song so multifaceted and lovely doesn't happen by accident. This is art...


• Unmortricken! Rick and Morty has always been borderline genius with momentary lapses into episodes I'm completely indifferent about. But this latest episode? Unmortricken? I honestly don't know where the show goes from here. It's like every episode up until this point has been building to this point... and now it's over. Or mostly over. Which means that they either A) Have a plan to move in an entirely different direction along the same bizarre themes. B) Have ruined the show and it's going to devolve into a suck spiral before dying out. C) Will eventually realize that this was a big mistake and find a way to reverse it. I really hope it's Option A, because wow this episode was this a fantastic example of how *good* the show is when it's not getting in its own way.

Rick and Morty jumping out of a portal.

No, I didn't like Unmortricken better than ten other episodes (including The Rickshank Rickdemption which is one of the best episodes of television ever made), but it just goes to show that Rick and Morty is far from over if they can keep defying expectations like this.

• Blarf! I was excited that a Jaime Reyes "Blue Beetle" movie was in development. He's a fun character in the comics, and the fact that we'd finally get a Latino-centric super-hero movie meant it might be *different* from the same old thing. — Until I saw the trailers. They made it very clear that this was a "power of family" movie instead of a Blue Beetle movie. And who gives a shit about that? — Turns out the movie (now on HBO Max) is even worse than that. It is boring as fuck. It takes a half-hour... A HALF-HOUR... before you even see the Blue Beetle, for crying out loud...

Blue Beetle movie poster.

This is the most boring, uneventful, slog of an origin story that's ultimately just a frickin' Iron Man/Spider-Man hybrid clone, and not in a good way. I hope to God that James Gunn gets the DCU turned around so we avoid more of this idiotic crap. HA HA HA! GRANDMA WITH A GATLING GUN! HILARIOUS! and, even worse, HA HA HA! HOW FUNNY! HE CAN'T CONTROL THE SUIT AND HE'S RUNNING INTO EVERYTHING FOR TEN MINUTES! Jesus. I know Greatest American Hero was a while ago, but this has been done to death. From there on it's just talk talk talk talk talk with action beats that are equally boring. What a frickin' waste.

Hope your Turkey Day is a good one.


Flashback from Faith

Posted on Tuesday, November 21st, 2023

Dave!It's funny the things you remember.

I rewatched the Wham! documentary on Netflix and it got me thinking about the George Michael video for Faith with his iconic jukbox, cross earring, and BSA jacket, which made me run to YouTube to watch it (and then, of course, the follow-up video for Freedom where he sets all of it on fire)...

All of a sudden I had a flashback to a pair of pajamas my grandma made me when I was little. But I wasn't wearing them in the flashback... I was looking at me wearing them. Probably in a photo. So I went running to look through all my scans of old family photos and, yep, there it was...

What's amazing is that I recognized the pajamas as being BSA pajamas even though I couldn't really read it until I zoomed in and digitally enhanced it, which means I likely remembered it in my subconscious from when I was a kid somehow...

I have no idea why BSA fabric was being sold here in the very rural valley we live considering the brand is British (BSA = Birmingham Small Arms). Nor do I know why my grandma selected it to make pajamas for me. Although it might have been because I've been a motorcycle fan from a very young age...

All due respect to George Michael, but I think I wore it better...

Weird how I can remember a pair of pajamas from 50 years ago, but can't remember why I walked into the kitchen ten minutes ago.

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Music Replay 2023

Posted on Tuesday, November 28th, 2023

Dave!The big thing over the past week has been people sharing their Spotify Wrapped list.

I don't have Spotify, but Apple Music has a similar feature called "Reply" which allows you to revist the music you listened to most over the past year.

My Apple Replay Top Artists for 2023...

  1. Fly By Midnight
  2. The 1975
  3. Pet Shop Boys
  4. MUNA
  5. Post Malone
  6. Taylor Swift
  7. Run The Jewels
  8. Slayer
  9. P!nk
  10. Kacey Musgraves
  11. The Weeknd
  12. Wrabel
  13. Miley Cyrus
  14. Cannons
  15. Thompson Twins’ Tom Bailey

Kinda an ecclectic list there. Though it really doesn't tell the full story, because a lot of the music I listen to is in my car and not counted.

While driving, my favorite thing to listen to is old-school rap and hip-hop. I have a half-dozen CD's burned which has all those amazing Yo! MTV Raps classics on them. Biggie, LL, Dre, Big Daddy Kane, Eminem, Public Enemy, Wu-Tang... the list goes on and on. They're just such amazing tracks to have slamming into your brain while trying to navigate the horrors of the road. I burned them decades ago, and kept them in my car because I only have a CD player. There's other CDs, of course, but these are my favorites.

Eternally stuck in the 80's. That's me.

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Bullet Sunday 834

Posted on Sunday, December 10th, 2023

Dave!Well, here we go again... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Swifty! “They had to work really hard to get the tickets,” she says. “I wanted to play a show that was longer than they ever thought it would be, because that makes me feel good leaving the stadium.” — People can feel however they want to feel about Taylor Swift and her music... but there is absolutely no denying that she works incredibly hard for everything she has and gives her all to everything she does, and that is deserving of respect. I think her getting "Person of The Year" is completely valid...

Taylor Swift on the cover of Time Magazine.

Reading the article, it doesn't seem a bad choice at all. My favorite part is that when she was denied her first big gig supporting Kenny Chesney because it was sponsored by a beer company and she was underage, Chesney cut her a check anyway. Her first thought to do with this major windfall was to pay her band and tour crew. I may believe that billionaires shouldn't exist... but if they must, I sure wish more of them acted like Taylor Swift.

• Sundays! Me. Trying to hold a discussion about sportsball...


• Delicious! Why is it that little red pandas always look like they're saying Come at me bro! when they stand up like this?

When they're not standing upright, they're one of the cutest things alive...

Now I want a red panda.

• Martians! A lot has (rightfully) been thrown at Jared Leto for his acting and, more importantly, his acting behavior. But I really do like his singing with Thirty Seconds to Mars...

I mean, come on. That's a great track.

• Slough! Today Apple TV+ advertised Slow Horses: Season 3 starring GARY OLDMAN AND KRISTIN SCOTT THOMAS?!? I didn't even know that Season's 1 & 2 existed! So I tuned in. And it's a fantastic series...

It's brutal and packed with drama one minute... then is played for comedy the next. And yet it somehow... works? I have no idea how this show escaped my notice... but I'm all in now.

• Name That Tune! One of my favorite recent discoveries on Youtube is this street trivia game that has random people guessing music...

And sometimes not so random people too...

The channel is Public Opinion NYC, and if you're looking for a diversion and like music... it may be worth checking out!

• Spin, Eat, Repeat! Round and Round, the Hanukkah Hallmark Channel movie this year is the absolute best. It’s clever, smart, funny... and features 80’s music, geek culture, comic books, and a hefty nod to some time travel movies which came before (except the one that really matters, but we'll get to that). It’s like somebody wrote this one just for me! But anyway... a woman has a disastrous 7th night of Hanukkah... that keeps repeating. Just like in Groundhog Day, which they are quick to acknowledge in the story. And just like in that film, she has to figure out why she's stuck in a time loop and how she can get out of it...

Movie poster for Round and Round.

That alone would be worth watching, but they toss in a twist at the end which has you completely recontextualizing everything you've seen. I had to go back and see if I missed some clues. Turns out I really didn't, which was disappointing. The only way this could have been better would be to have made the twist apparent when you rewatched it. Then there's the fact that the twist is kinda-sorta from one of my all-time favorite time travel movies, which I can't mention because it will give it away. But blah blah blah. This is a fantastic film with stellar performances that are built around a great story. One of my favorite Hallmark movies ever.

There we went again. See you next Sunday for more bullets.


Bullet Sunday 835

Posted on Sunday, December 17th, 2023

Dave!Odds of a White Christmas are diminishing, but that's okay... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Scale! Unsure about your place in the universe? No worries! Turns out that you're actually the center of everything!

It's amazing how good Kurzgesagt videos are. When I see that they have something new out, I drop everything and watch it. They never disappoint. Case in point? If you have tattoos... or even if you don't... this is 1000% worth a watch...

I don't know why, but seeing this video just wants me to go get a new tattoo.

• Mapped! XKCD is usually good for a laugh, but this one made my brain do a flip-flop first...

A whack-a-doodle map of the USA with a lot of extra states tossed into it!

The genius is that, at first glance, you don't see anything wrong. And, because I like you, I named the extra states...

I don't know about you, but we totally should have a state named "Steve."

• NEWSFLASH: Stanley Tucci Going Back to Italy After Nat Geo Signs Up Former CNN Host! Stanley Tucci is a national treasure. Mostly for his movie roles (including my all-time favorites in Undercover Blues and The Devil Wears Prada). But also for his dedication to food, thanks to his amazing series called Searching for Italy. I love the show... right up until CNN stupidly canceled it a year ago. Fortunately NatGeo knows a good thing when they see it, and will pick it up again. Now titling it The Heart of Italy. And I cannot wait.

• FAKE! In Tokyo there's a famous area called Kappabashi Dougu Street (AKA "Kitcen Town"). It's filled with restaurant supply vendors. Kitchen equipment, dishware, decoration... it's all there. But the best thing you can buy there is fake food. Unlike in this country, most restaurants have windows filled with fake food representations of the dishes you can buy inside, and a lot of time there are prices next to each one so you also know what it's going to cost you. It's a fascinating part of Japanese culture, and now there's a video showing how this amazing fake food it crafted...

Mesmerizing. I've been to Kappabashi-dori a few times to look at all the replicas, but I don't recall ever seeing the stuff actually made.

• JOKE-SWAP 2024! How do they get away with this...

Easily the best thing to come out of Weekend Update, it almost makes you wish this was a weekly feature.

• Queen Flight! I've mentioned several times how much I love film. I've also mentioned how I'm a massive fan of film analysis. My favorite person doing analysis being Thomas Flight. One of his most famous videos is a critique of "Best Editing Oscar Winner" Bohemian Rhapsody by John Ottman. If you are not one of the 2.9 million people who saw the video, it's worth a look...

As a massive Queen fan, I ran to the theater so I could see Bohemian Rhapsody on the big screen. And, yes, this crap scene took me right out of the movie because I got whiplash trying to follow it. How could it not? To me it was just as bad as hearing a fucking "Wilhelm Scream" and being jerked out of the story. But anyway... what I didn't know is that John Ottman responded to the criticism, and Thomas made a video about that...

Ultimately I loved the movie. It's hard not to if you're a Freddie Mercury and Queen fan. But that doesn't make it above criticism. That shouldn't make it above criticism. Especially when we're talking about the editing, which wasn't that great, regardless of circumstance and the chaos of the film's production.

• True Lauv! Facebook Memories are a mixed bag. Sometimes it's painful memories of times I'd just as soon not revisit, but often times there's something nice awaiting me. Like a happy event, funny video, or cool song. Like this music video from last year. Lauv really knows how to craft a hook...

Most of the time, however? My Facebook memories are crowded with posts about all the travel that used to occupy my time.

Only one more Bullet Sunday until Christmas! Hope your shopping is finished.



Posted on Friday, December 29th, 2023

Dave!Much like last year, I didn't stray far from the pop music I love (although I was listening to the new Metallica album more than a few times on those bad days). I just needed "comfort food" to get me through, and there was plenty of that in 2023. But anyway, here you go...

#1 Smash: The Singles 1985-2020 — Pet Shop Boys
I don't generally put compilation albums in my year-end wrap-up, but this one simply could not be denied. Pet Shop Boys is one of my all-time favorite bands, and this is a super-set of their best music. I already own every album they have released, so the first thing I did was create a playlist of the Smash setlist. Though some of the singles were "new versions," that had me exploiting my Apple Music subscription to hear. Interestingly enough, many of my most favorite PSB songs, like The Way it Used to Be and Dreaming of the Queen and The Survivors and The End of the World and Up Against It and others were never released as singles, thus aren't on this compilation. Regardless, it was my favorite album of 2023 by a long shot, and reliving these songs was an amazing experience for Pet Heads.

#2 i/o — Peter Gabriel
As a longtime Peter Gabriel fan, I was intrigued when rumors of a new album started leaking very soon after Up was released in 2002. Apparently Gabriel had so many songs left over from that project that he was planning on a follow-up album in 2004. Then, NEARLY TWENTY YEARS LATER, we finally get a new album. And it was weirdly-handled. Instead of releasing it in January 2023, Gabriel dropped a new single on every full moon... with an alternate mix of the same song the following full moon. It got to the point where I forgot about the releases and any momentum for the album fizzled. UNTIL Jester took me to see the i/o tour on October 9th. Weirdly, the entirety of the album was played in this epic-length live show, making it the first time I had heard the actual album. And then on December 1st, the two albums of two different mixes was released, and it leapt to one of my favorite albums of the year. A lot of that has to do with me thinking back to the concert, but the songs are just darn good on top of that.

#3 In the End it Always Does — The Japanese House
I was completely unaware of Amber Bain until she collaborated with MUNA, and then I was immediately obsessed. Mostly because she could easily be a fourth member of MUNA, a band I love. This album is filled with lovely, haunting, easy-listening tracks that have interesting, simple melodies and a lyrical property that causes them to wash over you like warm gentle waves on a beach. Or wrapping around you like a warm blanket. Gorgeous from start to finish, this was an easy pick for my third favorite album of 2023.

#4 The Show — Niall Horan
Color me shocked. One of the members of One Direction who is not Harry Styles actually released a darn good album (well, with the exception of the song You Could Start a Cult, which... WTF?!?). While it's true that nothing on this album is overly-challenging or groundbreaking, it's still solid songwriting with some great tracks that I ended up playing a lot over the Summer. And just writing about it makes me want to give it another spin. I can't give much better endorsement than that.

#5 Endless Summer Vacation — Miley Cyrus
I must admit that every time Miley releases a new album that gets critical praise I have the smug satisfaction of knowing that I was a fan since Day One. And here she comes with another fantastic collection of songs that takes full advantage of her breathy vocals while actually trying to say something. Not feeling the need to scream to the cheap seats or rip into a track like it owes her money or unleash shock value, Endless Summer Vacation is a mature effort that's really satisfying for longtime fans.

#6 Cracker Island — Gorillaz
Gorillaz is one of those stunt bands that can actually back up their antics with incredible music. And this latest is more of the same... but with a few tricks tossed in for good measure (collaborations with Tame Impala, Bad Bunny, Beck, and STEVIE NICKS??). I listened to the album on repeat too many times, but you can hardly blame me when beautiful tracks like Silent Running (with Adeleye Omotayo) kept getting stuck in my head. Interestingly, the main release was a scant ten tracks, but they released a "Deluxe" version with another five more experimental tracks that are far more disposable (with the exception of the bared down version of Silent Running, which is great).

#7 Something to Give Each Other — Troye Sivan
I've enjoyed random tracks by Sivan, and some of those songs I've absolutely loved (You is on half my playlists)... but listening to a full album from the guy has always been rough for me because he strayed in directions that lost me. Turns out that third time is a charm, because this time the album is flawless from start to finish.

#8 Bauhaus Staircase — Orchestral Manoevres in the Dark
If you were to jettison a lot of the more experimental stuff from their early years, OMD actually has a darn good catalog of songs. Add to that the fact that the band has been going for a long time and... well... they've got a heck of a lot of music I love. But it was the release of History of Modern in 2010 that made me took another look at the band. OMD had been releasing a lot of good music, but this was such a fantastic album that I underwent a kind of OMD renaissance. Bauhaus Staircase a step down from the past three albums, but still a good listen with some excellent hallmark OMD tracks.

#9 Hold — Wild Nothing
If breezy fun synth-pop is your jam, have I got an album for you! Jack Turner has been cranking out some wonderful tracks for the past 13 years as "Wild Nothing" and manages to not deviate from formula while always sounding fresh. He had me from the first time I heard Chinatown off his first album Gemini... and has held me right up to this latest album in 2023. Everything is just solid, well-crafted, and listenable, as usual, and I wish he would get recognized with some song placement on any number of television shows, which would be perfect. These songs can go anywhere in anything.

#10 Council Skies — Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds
During their time in Oasis, Noel and Liam Gallagher had a controversial run that resulted in some amazing music. But it all came to a very public end, and you had to wonder if their success and talent was fueled by their numerous clashes and fights. Turns out that wasn't the case, because they've both gone on to further success. Noel's latest is built around a rich sound that makes everything feel as though it harkens back to a time when music was made in a different way. Like Beatles-era, if that makes any sense. The Deluxe version has instrumental versions of tracks, remixes by the like of Pet Shop Boys and Robert Smith(!), and some nice extras that are worth a listen.

#11 Memento Mori — Depeche Mode
There's nothing more frustrating than being a Depeche Mode fan from the very beginning. If that's you, then it's likely you feel the band's best days are long gone, and everything after Alan Wilder departed following Songs of Faith and Devotion is not even the same band. I don't go quite that far... there were some post-Wilder albums I loved... but the never-ending theme of "redemption" on every fucking song became so very, very tired, and I positively hated the past two albums (Delta Machine and Spirit). Then fandom was sent into shock when Fletch died, and it felt extremely likely the band was done. Except they weren't, and Mememto Mori is the result. Half of the album is a holdover from the past two that I don't even want to listen to... but then there's some glimmers of the old band in a few tracks to make me happy that they released the album. Before We Drown is one of my favorite DM songs in a decade. And the tracks People Are Good and Ghosts Again just... work.

#12 DANSE MACABRE — Duran Duran
This is a strange throwback not to early Duran Duran (which I would have loved), but instead to a post-punk sensibility that puts being weird above being popular. Half the songs I like for real... half I kinda-like because they are just such a different turn for the band. But ultimately this is a bit of a low in the up-and-down cycle of Duran Duran, and I wish to God they would just give us a throwback album that recaptures those heady days of Girls on Film. But, then again, I could say that about so many bands from the 80's that have hung around.


Jake Hill's Country Music alter-ego, Dixon Dallas, could be a big joke... or it could be a serious attempt to carve out a musical niche in a very crowded field. Likely it's a bit of both. Whatever the case, the sexually-charged gay lyrics are layered on top of some seriously good tracks, and I listened to the pile of singles that got released in 2023 far more than I would have if they had merely been some kind of attempt at bad shock value at the expense of gay lives.


I love love love this Lauv song, All 4 Nothing (I'm So in Love), which came out in August of 2022 and I didn't even know about it until early this year...


  • The Loveliest Time — Carly Rae Jepsen
    Last year Carly Rae released a perfectly lovely album called The Loneliest Time. Turns out the songwriting for that project resulted in an entirely additional album of material that she decided to release as a "companion album." This would be a bad thing if it was just a cash-grab, but the album actually has merit. Far from just a bunch of leftovers, there's a cohesive thread running through the tracks that could have easily made this a full release in its own right.
  • Last Man Dancing — Jake Shears
    I, infamously, became a fan of Scissor Sisters when Jester sent me some tracks to listen to... AFTER THE BAND HAD ALREADY BROKEN UP! Then in 2018 front-man Jake Shears came out with his self-titled debut solo album, and I was not impressed. It's like he tried to get away from Scissor Sisters while trying not to loose any fans, and it just didn't work. This time he learned from his mistake and went back to his dance music roots in a good way. ALas, there's a weird dichotemy going on here, whereas the first half of the album is a delicious nod to disco that's quite good... but the second half is just... not. It's not that it's bad, it's just a weird U-turn that was hard for me to process after getting completely hooked at the start. Still, this is a good album with some great songs, it's just that I listen to the first half more often than the last half.
  • Rockstar — Dolly Parton
    Despite not being a huge Country Music fan, I'm a huge fan of Dolly Parton. The woman can write really good songs as easily as most people breathe. It's just what she does. Then last year she was inducted into the Rock-and-Roll Hall of Fame. Being the humble angel she is, she said she felt bad about it because she didn't feel she had done much for rock music, and thought she was taking away from more worthy inductees. But then she said that since she had been given the honor, she'd come out with a rock album. And here it is. An oh boy did she go for gold. She's got duets with Sting, Steve Perry, Ann Wilson, Steven Tyler, Stevie Nicks, Peter Frampton, Joan Jett, Miley Cyrus, P!nk, Elton John, Simon Le Bon, and so much more! Which just goes to show that everybody loves Dolly Parton and nobody could say no to teaming up with her. Alas, the album is a bit of a mixed bag. I'd rather she have given us another album of the music she does best... but it's a fun listen for sure.
  • TRUSTFALL — P!nk
    I am a massively huge fan of P!nk. Let me qualify that... I am a massively huge fan of P!nk's pop music tracks. I'm not a fan of her slow ballads at all. Fortunately this album is a good balance and there's plenty for me to love, it just wasn't enough for me to love it enough to listen to it as much as previous albums.
  • Fantasy — M83
    Dreamy synth-pop with a slight edge that seeps into your subconscious in a good way. Some tracks hit better than others, but the album is definitely worth listening to.
  • That! Feels Good! — Jessie Ware
    After the disco explosion that was What's Your Pleasure? in 2020, Jessie took a half-step back into something more soulful that sounds as if it may be the best album she's ever released. And yet... a number of tracks on the album make sure that her newer fans aren't left behind. This is the kind of music I'll put on while making dinner, then not be able to switch off because it's stroking too many pleasure centers in my brain.
  • Tension — Kylie Minogue
    No dance-pop fan can deny the power of Kylie Minogue. Well, except me, who was very, very late to the party. With the exception of a few singles, I barely knew she existed until I was mistakenly sent a copy of Showgirl: The Greatest Hits Tour... FROM MY NETFLIX DVD SUBSCRIPTION IN 2006! and ended up watching it. And really enjoying it. Kylie knows how to put on a show! But anyway... I've been an off-and-on fan ever since. This album is more of the same, and I honestly probably couldn't pick the songs out of a Kylie lineup (except for Padam Padam, the lead single which I do not like)... but considering "the same" is actually pretty good stuff, I liked the album.
  • Time's Arrow — Ladytron
    If you're into their hallmark sound, this album will likely appeal to you. But there's also a few tracks that elevate it out of their usual fare.
  • chemistry — Kelly Clarkson
    I'm not a huge fan of the power ballads that Clarkson does so incredibly well, but this album had some offerings that I enjoyed quite a lot (high road is mesmerizing and magic is gorgeous).
  • Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse — Metro Boomin
    The last movie gave us the absolute joy of the track Sunflower by Post Malone and Swae Lee, this time we get an album filled with a Who's Who of hiphop genius that feels incredibly cohesive and fit the movie perfectly.
  • GUTS — Olivia Rodrigo
    This album is a tough one for me because it has some truly great tracks that are wonderfully constructed and imbued with feeling... then there's a few which have such klutzy lyrical turns as "You sunk your teeth into me" on a track called vampire that grind the album to a halt for me. Overlooking these missteps is easy, however, because the album as a whole is pretty great.
  • This Life — Take That
    If you like Take That, then you'll probably like this album. It works as a continuation of what they've been doing for decades but doesn't really stand out from the other eight albums they've released. I did really like the title track though.
  • AUSTIN — Post Malone
    When Posty unleashes a song I love, I'm all in. Tracks like Sunflower and Circles and Better Now and Wrapped Around Your Finger made me a huge fan. But most of his catalog are not songs that hit me like those do, so I have a hard time listening to his albums straight through. AUSTIN was a little different, and I liked it quite a lot.
  • 72 Seasons — Metallica
    Look, it's Metallica. If you like the band, you'll like this album. They have lost absolutely nothing over the years, and this album sounds exactly like you'd want a modern Metallica album to be. But here's the problem... if this were Metallica's debut album, it would be absolutely lost in the metal scene. A lot of what goes into appreciating their later efforts is nostalgia. I'm not saying that it's time for them to hang up their guitars or anything... I liked this one a lot... I'm just saying that I'd rather listen to their old albums and recapture the feelings I had when they were fresh than listen to their later stuff.
  • It's the End of the World, But It's a Beautiful Day — Thirty Seconds to Mars
    This album followed Jared Leto's hilarious interview that got plastered all over the internet where he claimed that they had written 200 songs for it. As somebody who hasn't really taken much notice of the band, the idea of it was funny to me. Then on a chilly day in late September, I noticed the album had already been released. And it... was... good?!? No, not every song is great, but a few (in particularly Seasons, a song I love) made the album notable to me.
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