Observations 1-16-19

  • Resolving to screenshot important text messages because, yeah, the messages stay in your phone, but not really in a way where you can access/revisit them.
  • Sammy and me having dinner with a beloved former babysitter of ours along with her sweet husband and adorable kids.
  • The maudlin Staples (store, not Mavis) hold music.

Observations 1-15-19

  • Talking to a class of percussion students at Senn High School about drumming, professional playing, and life after high school. I braced myself to be ignored/ridiculed/pied in the face but they were engaged and sweet.
    • A student with special needs playing badass fills with a drumstick balanced on his head.
  • Watching Free Snacks’ debut show (download their mixtape, freesnacks.bandcamp[.]com).
  • Feeding carrots to Basil.

Observations 1-14-19

  • The power cord trailing behind a person’s electric cart at Jewel.
  • The charming, surly, 1999-y design of Dale Harris Software’s website (keyhut[.]com).

Observations 1-13-19

  • Getting rear-ended on my drive home. Sitting in the car, unsure of what to do, in the middle of California Avenue. The other driver being nice and apologetic and reasonable. A piece of her bumper stuck in my bumper.
  • Dan the bartender gingerly pouring a drink only at the loudest points of a free jazz trombone solo at Hungry Brain.
  • Steve Marquette playing guitar with a spoon.

Observations 1-12-19

  • My hands, ravaged by bites from Basil.
  • Hearing “Rock ’n’ Roll Singer” by Sun Kil Moon on a playlist and admiring the part where he holds a note as long as he can.

Observations 1-11-19

  • Casey’s birthday!
    • Shopping at the Squishable pop-up store.
      • The huge, cowperson-esque hats on the mall cops.

Observations 1-10-19

  • The poodle with red painted nails at security at LAX.
  • Remembering that the goal isn’t to hoard everything you have, but instead to spend it at a reasonable rate.
  • Meeting Casey’s perfect new dog, Basil.
  • Relocating a beetle from the bathroom wall to the basement garage, a move that upset my mom (does not want beetles in basement) but which technically satisfied her request of removing the beetle from the bathroom.

Observations 1-9-19

  • Playing “I Know What It’s Like” and “Don’t Forget” on Kimmel!
  • Prospecting for mochi balls in a pint of Halo Top Mochi Green Tea ice cream.

Observations 1-8-19

  • Rehearsing at SOUND CITY (!) with our special Jimmy Kimmel band.
  • The talk radio show that was entirely in Spanish except for occasional interjections of “chicken nugget” in English.

Observations 1-7-19

  • Taking out the trash with my waste-management-loving ten-year-old cousin, Charles—his favorite activity.
    • The inspiring design and engineering of his Bruder toy garbage trucks.
  • The last show of Dad’s four-night run at Largo.

Observations 1-6-19

  • Confusing the sign of the horns hand gesture with the love-you hand gesture, both in emoji and in real life.
  • Hiking Runyon Canyon with Uncle Danny.
    • My still-healing wisdom tooth sockets throbbing from the exertion.
  • The txt[.]fyi publishing platform (similar to write[.]as).

Observations 1-5-19

  • How I thought I was above my wisdom tooth antibiotic’s [12-27-18] “common side effect” of diarrhea. I was wrong.
  • The hum of the fridge sounding exactly like “Adam+Eve Connection” by Deerhoof.
  • FaceTiming Mom from the hot tub at our ridick Airbnb.
  • The amazing footage of the Captain and Tennille on The Midnight Special.
  • Being afraid of swirling a spoon in mugs ever since I saw Get Out.
  • How some might accuse the Left of whataboutism by defending Rep. Tlaib’s use of “motherfucker” with evidence of Republicans’ use of profanity. But it would only be whataboutism if we believed profanity (in informal settings) is wrong and that we ought to direct people’s attention away from our own wrongdoing. We have no such belief. We like swearing (in informal settings) and we know that Republicans do, too. But they claim that they don’t and so we’re speaking out about their bad-faith arguments.
  • Dave Davies following me on Twitter after I liked one of his tweets (?!)

Observations 1-4-19

  • Riding Lime scooters with Sammy.
    • Wearing no helmet, being terrified of cars.
    • They go fifteen miles per hour.
    • We are now ostracized from our community.
  • The vegetarian fried chicken and waffles at Sweet Chick (!).

Observations 1-3-19

  • The well-dressed, wealthy-looking guy slurping apple sauce out of one of those children’s apple sauce pouches on the street in LA.
  • The booming crystal business on Melrose Avenue.

Observations 1-2-19

  • My disdain for sugary Yoplait yogurt.
  • The monster Wait But Why post about Neuralink, Elon Musk’s brain-machine interface company that wants to give us the intellectual abilities of AI so we’re better able to defend ourselves against robots in the future.
  • Watching ice cubes melt in a hot water kettle.
  • Tatsu Ramen in LA’s adorable website and neon sign and great ramen.

Observations 1-1-19

  • The shimmery green tint on the black feathers of Hayden’s roosters.
  • My growing mastery of the duvet cover replacement process.
  • Helping Casey put her Christmas decorations away. She will not tolerate a post-Christmas wreath.
  • The 7 Days Out episodes about Westminster (basically Best in Show), Eleven Madison Park, and the League of Legends conference.
  • An innovation for 2019: tortilla chips in wasabi.

Observations 12-31-18

  • Driving to Hayden’s farm in a terrible snowstorm.
    • Following other cars’ tracks in the absence of lane markers.
    • Saying “thank you for your service” to every plow truck and snowblower.
    • The three new Great Pyrenees puppies on the farm.
  • The rough year or two Milo the rapper must have had being mistaken for Milo Y. on concert listings and in press.

Observations 12-30-18

  • NOOD SQUAD: my friends’ and my sorta-annual homemade pasta dinner night.

Observations 12-29-18

  • Listening to Tea for the Tillerman straight through for the first time and loving it, especially “Hard Headed Woman.”
  • The NYTimes story about how perpetrators of mass shootings use credit cards to finance their gun purchases (and credit card companies’ bullshit excuses for not helping to prevent or report those purchases).
  • The under-acknowledged genius of Instagram user takaharu.suzuki.666.

Observations 12-28-18

  • Pulling an acorn out from under my butt on our couch in Michigan.
  • Sweeping up a single Impossible burger crumb off the floor.
  • How King of the Hill is practically non-fiction (via Sammy).
  • Feeling disappointed that the Lincoln Yards development logo is pretty dang good [11-29-18].

Observations 12-27-18

  • The wad of earwax-looking, hickory-smoke-smelling medicine my dental surgeon put in one of my wisdom tooth sockets because it’s infected.
    • The centuries-old-looking jar it came from.
  • Sem Bênção / Sem Crença by Oruã (via Dad).
  • “I believe in a pee pee poop” to the tune of “I Believe in a Thing Called Love.”
  • The Oberweis delivery truck outside a friend’s house at 3AM.

Observations 12-26-18

  • Sitting in Zaid’s 1980s massage chair while waiting for an AT&T repairperson to arrive.
    • The fake keyboard clacking noises on AT&T’s (and others’) customer support calls. [1-1-19: Apple is the only major corp I’ve heard that tells its callers that the robot on the other end is a robot. AT&T really tries to pass it off.]
  • The debate about whether we should wish for a moonshot candidate or an appeasement-to-racist-whites candidate in 2020. I don’t want to be naive, but I think a moonshot candidate—a woman of color under seventy with great ideas and a straightforward manner of communicating—would be the more principled option and our best chance at winning because it’s the more principled option. Left-leaning people are tired of settling and tired of making decisions based on what Republicans will let us do instead of what we ought to do. I think we should be unabashedly principled and honest about what we want. 2016 shows us that “electability” is largely a mythical concept, anyway.
  • New York Times’ amazing, interactive story about the recent Lion Air disaster.

Observations 12-25-18

  • Delivering gifts with Letters to Santa (visit pac.charity).
    • The welcome mat in a makeshift basement apartment.
    • The lack of toxic pride or angst in the families we met—just pure gratitude.
    • The reaction of one kid, Isaac, who was basically a caricature of an excited child. He kissed one of our organizers, Val, on the cheek.
  • The ice cream trucks crammed into a lot in a residential neighborhood.
  • The MetroPCS sign in the chassis of an old Blockbuster sign.
  • The relief of a veggie burrito after driving around all day, and eating my first tortilla chip post-wisdom-teeth-surgery (they’re sharp).

Observations 12-24-18

  • The smorgasbord of vegetarian Chinese takeout in the Tweedy household this Christmas Eve.
    • The woman at the takeout restaurant with elven bells on toes as part of her Christmas outfit.
  • Bootsy Collins emanating from Sammy’s room.
  • Donating to the GoFundMe for a survivor of the 1985 Pennsylvania Police bombing of the MOVE organization.
  • How people generally think major labels are dead—and they’ve certainly declined/evolved—but there’s still a brand new act with one trillion followers on late night TV every weekend.
  • The space-age reflective silver packaging for Visions, an indie sci-fi magazine.
    • They also digitized a print font from 1969, Marvin, and released it for free last year.
  • Missing my retainer, which I haven’t been wearing because of the wisdom teeth sockets [12-18-18].

Observations 12-23-18

  • Eating the last of my birthday cake from one week ago.
  • James Black’s great drumming on “The Hook & Sling” (via Dave).
  • The 2017 Politico article, “Does the White Working Class Really Vote Against Its Own Interests?” (Answer: materially, yes. Emotionally, no.)
    • “[…] Black residents in many Northern cities had little recourse but to rent cramped, subdivided apartments in buildings whose white landlords often neglected repairs and upkeep, but the physical decay of their homes fed the white Americans’ suspicions that black residents chose to live in squalor.”

Observations 12-22-18

  • Smelling a fresh turd from Casey’s cat and feeling like it went directly into my brain.
  • Sammy’s birthday: watching King of the Hill and Tales from the Tour Bus together.
  • Passing a Peter Francis Geraci law office (in a former Taco Bell) and wondering: do law school graduates choose to work there, or do they view it as the only option when more elite law firms are out of reach? Do they enjoy it? It seems to me, an outsider, like McDonald’s: a service (low-cost, highly available legal help) that only exists because there’s no adequate public sector option, and which can only be staffed because there’s a dearth of opportunity for so many young people.

Observations 12-21-18

  • Vini Lopez’s funky, energetic drumming on Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J. blowing my mind (via Casey).
  • Drumming with Leonora, the baby of my friend and pseudo-sister Liz.
  • Wondering about psychosomaticism: At some point doesn’t our cognition get better than our body’s physical knowledge of what’s going on? e.g. Our bodies retain more fat when they “expect” that we’ll have little access to food in the future (based on recent relatively low intake), but since we’re now better able to consciously predict how much access to food we’ll have, why can’t our bodies respond to that info instead of the gut’s crude predictive mechanism?

Observations 12-20-18

  • The massive bird of prey that flew over the street with an almost equally massive rat in its talons, in Chicago.
  • How there were no pigeons in the highway viaduct this morning.
  • Asking Siri to text Mom before Siri had completely woken up from a restart, and Siri not remembering who my mom is.
  • The absolute cornucopia of super well-designed and well-written indie publications at Volumes book store.
    • Danez Smith’s beautiful poems in Forward Book of Poetry 2018.
    • The falcon imagery in Forward Book of Poetry 2018.

Observations 12-19-18

  • Religiously following my post-wisdom-tooth-surgery care instruction sheet.
  • Driving with an ice pack on my cheek.
  • My scientific opinion: the bacteria in yogurt are good boys and the bacteria that want to grow in my wisdom tooth sockets are bad boys.
  • Eating approximately one gallon of tomato soup (a socket-friendly food).
  • The Guardian story about Paper2017, a trade conference for the paper industry.
    • “You can’t blow your nose into an email. In the end, we are material. We have inputs and outputs. We require physical receptacles. And more of us are on the way.”

Observations 12-18-18

  • Waking up early-ish for wisdom tooth surgery.
    • The pink sunrise.
    • Listening to morning radio and talking about Cardi B and Offset with my Lyft driver to Liam’s house (whence he drove me to surgery).
    • “Tell Me Something Good” on in the waiting room.
  • Afterward, Casey tolerating my slurping while eating.
  • The big piece of flesh that came out of one of my tooth sockets.
  • Finding reassurance in the fact that the Stickies app is still on Mac.