Observations 2020-10-01

  • Oh, to have Jimmy Carter as our president. Happy Birthday, Jimmy Carter.
  • Butoh baby” by Oliver Coates.

Observations 2020-10-02

  • Blasting static-y WLEY regional Mexican radio in the car with Sammy, appreciating the ultraslick horn lines and deep vocal vibrato.

Observations 2020-10-03

  • Tr*mp sign after Tr*mp sign in rural Michigan yards. But then: one massive farm building, painted corner-to-corner with a Biden mural.

Observations 2020-10-04

  • The ultrathin film of cobweb between the bed headboard and the wall, rippling in the draft.

Observations 2020-10-05

  • The person pushing a bike stacked with like eight wooden dining chairs.
  • The cubic church building, which was once painted gray and had no windows, is now a hyper-hip office with art and large ferns in its newly cut windows [also: 2-16-20].

Observations 2020-10-06

Observations 2020-10-07

  • Watching the Vice Presidential debate, struggling to understand what motivates someone like Mike Pence to do the things he does. I know the answers are there. They’re not easy to accept.

Observations 2020-10-08

  • The huge tree grown around a light pole. Like, the entire base of the light pole, engulfed by tree.
  • The public park field house door that comes to a triangular point at its top.
  • The minivan driver resting her head on its steering wheel at a stop light.

Observations 2020-10-09

  • The Calvin drawing-esque decal on a pickup truck at a gas station in Indiana: “Nobody cares about your stupid little family,” beneath a stick-figure airplane dropping bombs on a stick-figure family.

Observations 2020-10-10

  • The grandpa and grandson perched atop a sand dune, stoically/sweetly watching Lake Michigan.
  • Reading and sleeping on a dune myself, leg sorta dangling over the edge.
  • The dessert shop worker cleaning a giant metal cauldron (for fudge) with a proportionally giant toothbrush-ish brush.

Observations 2020-10-11

Observations 2020-10-12

  • Pulling up old carpet, and little patches of it sticking to the concrete beneath like tufts of fur.
  • Los Angeles” by Dougie Poole.

Observations 2020-10-13

  • The smell of campfire emanating from my hair.
  • While buying a garbage can at a home improvement store, the cashier asking Jason and me if we would like to put her in the garbage can and take her home.

Observations 2020-10-14

  • The banner advertising the “National Collage of Phlebotomy” [sic].
  • The semi-truck tractor with a “STUDENT DRIVER” sign on it.

Observations 2020-10-15

  • Feeling the back of my bottom teeth for the first time in like 10 years, after getting my bottom retainer wire removed.
  • Tr*mp campaign advisor Mercedes Schlapp’s tweet comparing Biden’s town hall to an episode of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, as if that were a diss, reminding me of this post I wrote in 2018.

Observations 2020-10-16

  • Automatic Slim and the Fat Boys” by Michael Hurley.
    • Hurley’s “dawn’s early light” reminding me that in all my childhood, I thought “dawn’s early” of the national anthem was a single adjective, like “dawnserly.”
  • At a socially distanced hang, a friend dropping her phone into a campfire, and me pulling it out with a conveniently located pair of fire tongs. It survived with screen damage.

Observations 2020-10-17

  • The person flying a dragon-shaped kite alone at a church parking lot at night.

Observations 2020-10-18

  • Imagining a Robert Pollard and Lil B collaborative album.

Observations 2020-10-19

Observations 2020-10-20

  • The car transport truck almost getting stuck under a viaduct. The driver getting out, smiling and laughing at his near-handiwork. Ten minutes later, me, walking home on a different street. He’s driving on it, having found a safe route around the viaduct. I give him a thumbs-up and he thumbs-ups back.
  • The lawn-mowing robots on a corporate campus in the suburbs.
  • The release of Mirror Sound, a book about musicians who self-record I created with Lawrence Azerrad and Daniel Topete. Available here. 😊

Observations 2020-10-21

  • The so-sweet messages from young self-recording musicians about being encouraged by Mirror Sound.

Observations 2020-10-22

  • The cotton-candy pink fiberglass insulation shards embedded in my arm.
  • The weak radio signal cutting back and forth between fantasy football talk radio and old-time music.

Observations 2020-10-23

  • The release of LOVE IS THE KING, my dad’s new album made with Sammy and me. Available on Bandcamp, everywhere you stream music, and physically at WilcoWorld.net!

Observations 2020-10-24

  • Sammy Davis Jr.’s many TV performances of “Mr. Bojangles” from the ’70s and ’80s.
  • Carving pumpkins with Casey and Mel.

Observations 2020-10-25

  • And the Hits Just Keep on Comin’ and Pretty Much Your Standard Ranch Stash by Michael Nesmith (via my friend Don).

Observations 2020-10-26

  • Dad on Colbert, after Sacha Baron Cohen.
    • I’m always surprised to see a Sacha Baron Cohen interview because I expect him to be secretive, hermetic, like Banksy.
  • The massive, independent wholesale hardware store, frozen in time, a delicious if not dank antidote to Home Depot and Lowe’s.
    • Deliberately scuffing up my pants with drywall dust before driving there, to help my chances of being taken seriously.
    • The beautiful green vise I want to buy for my (future) workbench.
    • The chained-shut double-door that opens from a second-floor office out onto nothing.
    • The store’s point-of-sale-system: CRT monitors with a black-screen-green-text command-line program running on them.

Observations 2020-10-27

  • Hauling wheelbarrow after wheelbarrow of drywall debris.

Observations 2020-10-28

  • Ordering pizza from the most old-school Chicago possible restaurant/bar: full of old-timers and cops, mostly maskless, guzzling Bud at 1PM.
  • The vulture capitalist campaign to invest in struggling local venues, SaveLive, masquerading as a savior of the live music industry.

Observations 2020-10-29

  • Admiring the leaves that haven’t fallen yet and those that have.

Observations 2020-10-30

Observations 2020-10-31

  • Watching cute trick-or-treaters walk up to Casey’s sanitary candy box outside her window.
  • Reading Black Cross zines about protest safety.