Good morning. Hello. How are you? #666
Issue of the beast. Someone firebombed the Satanic Temple HQ. Elon, no relation to satan. Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space at 25. Yukon Quest schism. Plotless Netflix trailers.
Good morning. Hello. How’s it going, how are you? Wow it’s issue number 666. Seconds before writing this sentence, I saw a comment from my friend Johnny Lane mentioning “ooo #666 is next” and until that exact moment, a couple seconds ago, it did not even click that issue number 666 was imminent. I should have planned something, that is a bummer. I was even in Salem recently and did not bother visiting the Satanic Temple headquarters, because, indoors. Nick visited, though, and sent some great photos of it. But they are, alas, not mine to share. He said the security was very tight. They have some original Dalis and get a lot of protestors, so, you know, tight security.
In fact, he says as he is furiously Googling this, a man set fire to the Satanic Temple HQ in Salem six days ago, explicitly calling his own ats “a hate crime,” so, there you go. Tight security is warranted. Wow this is crazy. Here’s a video of it. They have a Ring cam, and the lights went on automatically when the man — wearing a T-shirt that says GOD — walked up on the porch and started pouring gasoline. He didn’t even flinch when the lights went on. Just kept pouring his gasoline.
Man. People bringing people down. As the Mountian Goats say in their masterpiece “The Best Ever Death Metal Band in Denton,” “Hail Satan.”
OH. That reminds me. When we were driving to Charlotte for Tears for Fears, we passed through a small town called Denton, NC, population estimated at 1,680 but who knows, maybe it’s 1,666. Anyway it got me thinking. Do we know for sure that the Mountain Goats song “The Best Ever Death Metal Band in Denton” is actually about Denton, Texas? I mean, I always assumed so, but that is probably because I have a bias for Denton, Texas because it is where the fantastic band The Factory Press came from, featuring Wayne Magruder who went on to play drums in Bowery Electric (also more or less from Denton) and later start the vastly underrated, majestic band Calla. So, yeah, Denton has rock pedigree, it just made sense to me that John Darnielle was singing about Denton, Texas.
Also, I had never heard of Denton, NC, population estimated at 1,680, home to the The Southeast Old Threshers' Reunion. BUT I suppose we should consider the possibility because John Darnielle lives in North Carolina. Maybe he was driving from the Triangle to Charlotte to see a rock show and passed through Denton, and decided to use it in his masterpiece “The Best Ever Death Metal Band in Denton.”
But, then, Darnielle was born in Indiana, considers himself a native Californian, lived in Iowa through the 90’s, I don’t really know when he got here. Definitely before me, but was he here in 2000, when he recorded All Hail West Texas…Oh wait, also the title of the album on which the song resides.
Oh well, so much for that theory.
Was a great segue, though.
When you punish a person for dreaming his dream,
don't expect him to thank you or forgive you
The Best Ever Death Metal Band out of Denton
will in time both outpace and outlive you
Hail Satan tonight
Oh god I posted lyrics I am such an emo teenager. I really try not to do that.
Elon Musk (ha, oh I moved on all right) did his first appearance in front of the Twitter employees and it went about as well as can be expected for a guy in that situation. He took pre-selected questions, which in my view is always somewhat of a chicken move, though I fetishize standing up in front of my employees and having them watch me suffer by answering endless awkward questions. Though then again, I haven’t done that in a while, and also it might not be workable when the company has 20,000 employees. Still, I bet everyone would have liked Elon more if he had made an endeavor somehow, maybe a twitter hashtag (or private community to keep out the riff raff) where everyone could see the questions and see which ones he would dodge. I don’t especially get the sense that Elon is overly concerned about, like, winning over his new employees, however. There was a question of trust (a question of lust, a question of not letting what we’ve built up crumble to dust whoops sorry) and he immediately pivoted it into a question of employees delivering quality work which, lol, hello, not exactly the same thing. Very telling. Did his presence at this event clarify any of his assholery about seemingly trying to get out of the deal and/or repeatedly violating the covenants of the deal? Nah. Why would he do that. Sure, a normal person probably wouldn’t show up to an all hands of a company they didn’t want to buy, but, well, Elon.
Yestersay was the 25th anniversary of the release of the Spiritualized masterpiece Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space. It is not my favorite Spiritualized album, but is definitely in the top three, lol, and it’s release was a huge part of my life. Piritualized passed through Boston four times promoting that album, and I went to all four shows. Actually there was a fifth opening for Neil Young in the burbs god why did I skip that that was dumb. But they played the night before at Axis with Mistle Thrush. Newbury Comics did a promo for the record, doing a scavenger hunt throughout Boston and the winner won some prizes and that’s where I won my legendary LAGWAFIS lava lamp, which I still own but desperately need to re-wire. I also own small pill bottles of LAGWAFIS chocolate mints, shaped like chocolates. I used to have three of these, but one of them was eaten by Sebulba, our invasive racoon friend who used to break into our house in Allston and go roaming. To the point where he roamed right into my room, when I was asleep, pulled a drawer of my dresser open, where I kept my medicines, dug out the Spiritualized pill pottle, and ate the chocolates right out of it. Sebulba was hard core.
In an entirely separate promo event for LAGWAFIS, that took place in the middle of the day at the Phoenix Landing, I won a signed London Tube billboard that has hung in my house every day of the intervening twenty-five years and hangs in my studio today. It is one of my treasured posessions.
(Special bonus photo content of the record crate sticker collection).
The thing I chiefly remember about those LAGWAFIS shows is that they were so awkward, as the entire album was about Jason Pierce breaking up with Kate Radley, his girlfriend, who also happened to be a member of Spiritualized, and even though they broke up, she was still in the band, so she had to go around the world and play songs about how sad it is to get broken up with by Kate Radley, while she spent a lot of time holding down single keys on Farfisas or playing the great, simple keyboard riff on “Take Good Care of It.” I mean, it was awkward for the audience, I can’t imagine how unbelievably awkward it must have been for everyone involved. Though, of course, they both did it, so maybe we were all projecting, Jason always said it wasn’t that big of a deal.
The album ages well, it is more of a timeless, universal album than my two favorites, the first two Spiritualized records. I’ve had good luck in Very Specific Situations getting someone really into Laser Guided Melodies, and I do think in some ways it’s more accessible, but LAGWAFIS feels instantly understandable to most people: it’s a blues breakup record. It also basically let Jason have a career, so for that I am eternally grateful. Without LAGWAFIS there’d be no “Hey Jane,” there’d be no “Stop Your Crying,” there’d be no “Mainline Song.”
I have recently learned there is a schsim going on in the Yukon Quest dog race, the second-most important and second-most famous dog race in Alaska after the Iditarod. The Yukon Quest started in my childhood, my current good friend and then-ex-girlfriend’s dad had a hand in it in some way, he was a musher, it was never super clear, exactly, that dude was a scary dude. The race crosses the international border between Fairbanks and the Yukon (Whitehorse, maybe? All my Fairbanks friends are laughing at me not knowing all this stuff by rote) and, if I recall correctly, it was longer than the Iditarod, in harsher conditions, geneally considered more hard core. It started in the early 80’s. It switched directions, one year going Fairbanks-Whitehorse and the next going the reverse direction.
Anyway, to my eternal embarrassment, I do not have a paid subscription to the Fairbanks Daily News Miner, which is really pretty hard core about its paywall, nor does the Yukon Quest Wikipedia page say much about the schism, so I don’t really know what is going on, but if any of you Fairanksans read this have the inside scoop, I would love to know the skinny. I hope it’s really dramatic and juicy and they ultimately make a Netflix true crime docuseries about it (gawd there are a lot of those) or a Fargo-like comedy series.
Speaking of new Netflix shows, I subscribe to the Netflix YouTube Channel, which is a good time, it’s mostly trailers for their new shows, mostly foreign ones. But some of them, man. It is so crazy how vapid the shows seem. How the trailers have literally zero plot. There are multiple foreign Sex-in-the-City-type shows coming to Netflix and none of their trailers even have the pretense of the plot. Take, for example, this one for Maldivas which seems to be about, well, I think, divas in the Maldives.
I mean, okay, sure, looks fun but couldn’t you even pretend there was a plot, conflict, romance, anything? So weird.
Or this one, which seems to be a show entirely about people who like to have a good time, which, okay, sure, but… maybe some plot? Or development? Conflict? Anything? Their lives and the fun seem so vapid I’m geniuinely confused why these characters keep hugging each other, because nothing in the trailer indicates their lives have enough emotional development to form bonds with other humans. It’s real weird, just zero plot:
Not sure what’s up with this but I will keep a close eye on developments and report back.
That First Class one has a sence of menace throughout the trailer that lead me to believe it was going to transform into horror or a thriller or at least a pained love triangle or somethig, but… lol nope. Just more parties
Okay, well, that’s all I got for the day. I taught another session of Helayne’s exec ed program at the Miami Ad School last night, it was super fun, I like dipping my toes back into that world now and again. And we had a crazy-ass thunderstorm, knocked our power out so the power was out while I did it, battery backup, so that was a fun thing. I probably sold six or seven copies of Agency, so I look forward to that extra twenty-eight dollars in a year or so when Macmillan and Crain deign to pay me my next royalty check. I should not bad mouth them I want them to be nice and give me my book back. Lol like they’re ever gonna read this.
That’s the secret power of long-form content on today’s social web: no one reads it. Brilliant.
And Jane is at Grammy’s this morning, so I have the morning off and it’s a day off at work — recharge day today, Juneteenth monday, so a four day weekend, woo! Gonna go get my dry cleaning, get something notarized, go to Walmart, wow what an exciting day I can’t even imagine. Maybe Home Depot, not sure if there’s gonna be time.
Okay justa mix today. I really shoulda made a statanic mix but I don’t have that kind of time, alas. Maybe Nick, professor of Satanism and I can collaborate on one for Monday. That might be fun. Guest playlists, gawd, why haven’t I thought about that before. Anyway, mostly new stuff here, plus zeitgesty stuff. Julee Cruise, RIP, starts it off, added a Garbage song that’s been in my head since the show, and “Break it Down Again” since I’m now hearing it every day as my wife listens to it on repeat and endeavors to memorize the lyrics (there are a lot of lyrics in that song). The Strand of Oaks song is great, I bought the vinyl while in Salem, but the mastering job on Spotify is way, way too low so I’m just taking it on the end. Oh and that The Hurt band I was talking about yesterday that sound kinda like Tears for Fears. I need to learn more about them.
Okay off to run errands, god I love errands, I’m like a regular Suzy in Williamsburg in 2001 over here. She loved errands so much. Hi Suzy, I miss you, your star every day on GMHHAY is one of the highlights of my day. Love.