Saturday, January 26, 2008

No Boobies

Folks who don't know me very well may look at the title of this post and think I'm going to talk about breasts.

Folks who know me a little better will know my love of wordplay and passion for birds and guess I am going to talk about the tropical and neo-tropical sea-birds called boobies.

Folks who know me even better, well aware of my overactive fascination with the female gender and my underactive capacity for embarassment, may guess breasts again.

They'd be right.

I hope everyone enjoyed the Wikipedia article about birds I linked to up there, but you won't need anything discussed in it. I saw a news piece that got me thinking about the OTHER possible topic (and to be honest, it really doesn't take much to steer my mind in that direction).

The news piece was on the Packer Bikini Girls. The PBG are a small group of female fans of the Green Bay Packers football team that have hit upon a novel way to get national television coverage when they are at Lambeau Field (Packer's home field) supporting their favorite team. When they think a camera shot is immenant, they shed whatever coat they may be wearing, revealing bikini tops.

Really this is just a variation on the "shirtless guy" that seems to show up for pro football games. There is a difference though. The "shirtless guy" often looks like he has never met a sit-up he liked, and has never met a can of beer he did not. On the other hand, the PBG are attractive college aged women. Much more appealling for most folks (not all apparently, since some guys whom I suspect have alot in common with "shirtless guy" go out of their way to express otherwise).

At this year's NFC championship game, the PBG were at Lambeau to support the Pack. A camera sweep of the Lambeau crowd showed them, holding signs and wearing color-coordinated bikinis.

"Big deal", I can hear you say. Well, there is something about that game that adds a little interest. It was the 3rd coldest game in NFL history. The air temp at game start was -2F. Windchill closer to -20F. Lambeau is an outdoor stadium. The reaction of the game commentator: "oh my".

This little display of team spirit garnered the PBG regional and national media attention. There was even talk of a piece in Maxim magazine (since revealed to be just talk. Maxim apparently is going for the "shirtless guys" and silicone lovers of the world).

Which brings us to the title. The PBG made it known if they were to do a photo shoot they would not appear in less than their now famous bikini tops. So folks, no boobies.

Well, they'd be there. They're kinda attached. Just not bare.

Which wouldn't bum me out at all.If I ever write a book of sayings like Mao did one of them will be "an attractive woman is just a little more so if she puts some clothes on".

From the title you may have been expecting something a little more scandalous. I've barely mentioned boobies at all.

Well, the story which caught my interest really doesn't have much to do with breasts. And I've kinda got a progressive, sensitive guy rep to uphold.

So the title was maybe a little misleading. How naughty of me to mislead you like that. Digging myself into a hole.

Yes, I've been a naughty boy. Might need some stern ladies to discipline me. Make sure I never do it again.

Which reminds me of another saying for my imaginary book:

"You can't dig youself in to a hole so deep you can't dig it a little deeper ..."

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Past, Present, Future

March 26, 2001 was a wacky day if you were a pro wrestling fan. At that time there were two major national organizations, WWF and WCW, each with a Monday-night show in heated competition the other.

On March 26 the shows were partly simulcast. In a feed shown on both programs at the same time, WWF owner Vince Mcmahon announced the purchase of WCW by WWF.

No doubt this is fascinating to my readers. But why am I mentioning it here and now?

This is the 160th post on my personal blog Big Blog O' Dave Stuff. It is being 'simulcast' as the first post on my new music-themed blog Big Blog O' Music Stuff. Trying to have a go at a blog with an actual theme. Will I succeed? Well, so far I've spent more time on pro wrestling than music, but we'll see.

Less time on-topic, but not no time. See, this post is named after a song title. "Past, Present, Future" is not the most famous song the Shangri-las ever did (that'd be "Leader of the Pack"), but it is still an interesting song. Worth being familiar with.

Especially once you learn/realize that it is about the aftermath of rape. (In the English lit community we call this sort of offhand comment "foreshadowing". Don't say I never told you!)


Don't need to go back to the very beginning, listening to "oldies" on an 8-track in the family car. Don't have to look back that far. Until last year I has been a fan-in-hibernation for a while (following a few decades of pretty hardcore interest ...). Let's face it. Dave was not being a good little fan. I still paid a little attention, still kept my ears open somewhat. But I was content to just listen to stuff I already knew for the most part.


Well, I feel compelled to blog on this, so that SHOULD indicate I'm back in a groove and showing active interest again. Whereas I was listening to nothing new, now I am actively looking. I got an emusic subscription. I had resisted the urge to jump on the mp3 bandwagon previously. There are a handful of areas I am actively trying to know better. Some - girl group, hardcore - I already have pretty strong knowledge of but can always learn more! Others are a whole new game - folk metal being an example. So what my past to change in to my present? For that, we need to look at the future ...


I have seen the future. And it is wearing a polka-dot dress.

Probably overstating things a bit there. What happened was this:

We Are The Pipettes from (duh!) the Pipettes finally came out in the US. I had listened to a few tracks on a whim, and got hooked in a major way. I actually took the day off at work so I could pick up the release the day it came out. Record companies take note: make something I feel strongly about and I'll go to some length to encourage it. (Hey, more foreshadowing!)

Not that the Pipettes are perfect or my favorite band of all time. They are neither. But I do enjoy them quite a bit, something I'll go into more when I do reviews of We Are The Pipettes and other pipettey goodness.

Just about enough foreshadowing for today. Although that last bit isn't so much foreshadowing as just flat out saying what is coming up.

Also coming up: "They're Not The Pipettes", "I'm Not Getting Back On The Bus Until You Say We're Heavy F&@#in Metal", and the long threatened (on BBODS) missive on "What's A Girl (Group)". And why we should care.

See ya. Think this is gonna be fun.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


Sometimes having MS really sucks.

It is never a pleasent thing. Many of the difficulties are more annoyances than anything. Pretty severe annoyances no doubt, and they do kind of build up, but just annoyances.

A matter of perspective, really. Some of the things I see as annoyance some others might see as something much more difficult.

But sometimes it's like getting a baseball bat cracked across your skull.

A few months ago I mentioned something would either be really cool or really dissapointing. The title of this blog entry should indicate which way the wind blew. Well, that, and the fact that I never really mentioned it again.

See, I don't like stories that end on a downer. Writing them, anyway. This one started well enough ...

Remember several months ago when I mentioned the group Shonen Knife in an aside? That mention got me thinking about the group, so on a whim one day I visited their official band website ...

Holee crapjacks with maple syrup.

Not only was the group coming to Minneapolis, I found out about it with enough time to make plans! And make plans I did ...

First was the venue. I was a bit concerned, because it was a place I had never been before. I know someone who hangs out there fairly regularly and ran things by her. She didn't think I'd run into too much trouble because of my lack of mobility. Still a little anxious, but I felt better about it.

Second was getting there. No problem. Getting back? Problem. See, I take special transportation. That transportation ends at 11 pm, long before the show would be done.

No problem. Just take my cell phone with me and call a cab when I need to get home ...

But what if my cell phone breaks? Or gets stolen? And it's winter and cold, so if I fall down ... Not to mention still being anxious about never seeing the place before ...

So in short, anxiety won. I couldn't even think rationally about things as the show got closer. Finally I just decided to heck with it. I was too messed up to enjoy myself any way. I miss lots of shows. What was one more?

Except this one was kinda important.

See, I saw going as kind of a two-finger salute to this disease. I wanted to go at least partially because it was the sort of thing I'm told - often not explicitly, which just makes it worse - I shouldn't be doing. Something bad might happen.

Ah, to hell with that. And I don't swear on my blog.

But I got myself all worked up, the day came and went. I missed out.

So that's a downer, right? Where's the uplifting ending?

Well, in a few months X will be in town. 31st anniversary tour. In a way, better 'n Shonen Knife would have been. A venue I'm familiar with, springtime, a very important band.

Think I'll go.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

You Gotta Have A Thing

You gotta have a thing.

I should put that more clearly. 'Thing' could be, well, ANYthing. So, an example.

I formerly worked in retail with collectibles. My specialty was comic books. Many of my coworkers dealt with sports cards. Customers assumed thay all had collections with all the 'hot' items ... But no, not on purpose anyway. My coworkers for the most part had collections with a 'thing' - a reason for the collection outside the items in it being 'today's big thing'.

One guy collected cards from players with rude sounding names. Another football cards with players with bad afros.

Me? I didn't buy much in the way of sports cards, but I definately have specific things I look for in comics.

Of course, it would be pretty boring for the reader if I started listing them.

Ah heck, it's my blog. So there.

I pick up (or did when I was more active in the hobby) specific titles (Birds of Prey, Strangers in Paradise, many others), fill out titles I have partial runs of (if I have #1-#4 it is a pretty good bet I'll buy #5), appearances of specific characters (Batgirl, Supergirl, many others), certain cover art themes or images (swimsuits - but only on Archie Comics titles, bridal dresses/weddings, people carrying signs in protest of something), story themes (anti-communist, pretty much any stab at 'relevant' storytelling), genres (romance, teen humor) ...


You probably noticed a common theme in most of these. Yeah, I kinda get interested in the gender I am not. Occasionally someone will imply there is something sordid or unhealthy about this.

But ya gotta have a thing. Afros, inuendo-names ... whatever. Something that elevates the stuff you own beyond a mere accumulation.


Kind of a flow going that connects the last few posts. So of courseI break that next post with something completely different. Then after that big announcement.


Saturday, January 12, 2008

I can read women like a book

Yep, watch out ladies.

I can read women like a book.

Unfortunately, that book is written in Russian.

I get the general idea of what is going on but the details kind of elude me. (I was THIS close to a Russian minor back in the days of 'Dave goes to college Part One').

I was sitting on the bus and that came to me. No surprise there. I was actively thinking about that gender. More than usual, I mean. See, I'm compiling a big list (around 400 so far) of metal bands with female lead vocalists.

The natural question is WHY? WHY the h-e-double hockey sticks would I do that?

Well, you gotta have a thing, right? An outlet for intellectual curiousity if ya wanna get all brainy about it. A thing you do because doing things is pretty much the definition of being alive.

OK you say, but why this specific thing?

The response that pops to mind really has to be said in a certain way. On "That 70s Show", after Donna and Eric break up Eric is visited by an angel who guides him through a "Christmas Carol" style time trip. At one point his guide tells Eric they are going to see the future. Men Without Hats' "Safety Dance" begins playing. Eric exclaims, "What the HELL was THAT?"

The angel responds:

"Oh, you'll find out!"

Sunday, January 6, 2008


I've started posting on a messageboard again: this one. A bit of a change. It's been a while, and when I have been active before on a board it has usually been one about computing or comics But the theme of this one is not really relevant to this blog entry. One more chatty thread is about pet peeves. I have my share.

Oh boy do I have my share.

I try not to go off about them, though. Best not to pour gasoline on a fire, ya know. It's not that I can't do heated discussions. I handle myself well enough but tend to "go for blood". NOT a good way to win hearts and minds. And who needs the aggravation?

The question plays into something I've been thinking about recently. One little phrase. I'm not sure if the nature of the phrase or the fact that it is apparently accepted usage annoys me more. Whatever "zone" I'm in the phrase stops me short and gets me worked up.

That phrase is "confined to a wheelchair".

It would be extraordinarily simple not to use this. I'm not talking some convoluted new terminology. How about "uses"? Instead of "Bob is confined to a wheelchair", "Bob uses a wheelchair"? Did anyone fail to understand that second sentence?

So, simple to make a diffferent usage choice. The natural question is "why bother?". I'm not asking for anyones self esteem to be artificially propped up. This isn't like "differently abled" (which is an abomination in its own right). I have two problems with "confined to a wheelchair".

The first is that it doesn't make a lick of sense. Let's look at our hypothetical Bob again. Bob cannot get from A to B under his own legpower. So he uses a wheelchair to accomplish that. How is this confinement? Seems to me he has more mobility with than without. Most of us cannot get from one town to another 30 miles away without some kind of transport. Are we therefore "confined"? In a way yes, but "confined to a bus" is hardly common, let alone accepted, usage.

As an aside, these are good questions to ask those who rail against "political correctness". If anyone hasn't caught on that PC is a straw man created by the political right (and yes, there are examples of people taking the idea of speaking about/treating each other decently to extremes, but what falsehood is not at least a little grounded in truth?), the ear-deafening silence surrounding this phrase might be instructive.

The second aspect is the one that really gets at why "confined" is problematical. Back to Bob. I tell you that Bob uses a wheelchair. Why is it accepted usage to do so entirely from the standpoint of someone who does not? Again, lets look at travel. Except this time we're going to the UK. Maybe to catch some Premiership matches or something. If we're starting where I am now (north central US), chances are we will be taking an airplane. Could it be said we are confined to an airplane? It could, but should it? Maybe that is true from the point of view of a gull or something, but I don't see why that gull's point of reference should be more important than ours when WE ARE THE ONES BEING TALKED ABOUT. Perhaps the gull thinks requiring a mobility aid for transAtlantic travel is terribly confining. But should that gull's perspective trump the travellers?

I answer no ... but this blog entry is questions. Not answers.

Because the more questions you ask, the more you know. Eventually.

And knowing is half the battle.

Totally gratuitous 80s cartoon reference there. I know.

And knowing ...

I already said that.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Tony Randall II

I forgot something.

In my last post I asserted that two themes I saw in "Tony Randall" by Bikini Kill were complimentary, but I never really supported that assertation. One very important rule of doing this sort of criticism or analysis is "go to the text". Support claims with the work itself rather than just suggesting them. But I wasn't just pulling stuff out of thin air and expecting it to be believed.

As the song ends the line "some things can't be photographed" repeats several times. In neither pop culture artifacts nor the folks (on and off stage) in a strip club are the reality of the thing portrayed. Felix and Oscar do not (indeed can not) represent the entirety of such a friendship. Someone gyrating on stage does not (can not) present a whole image of that person.

Follow that?

Good. We can put away our textbooks and reenter the world where a cigar is just a cigar.

One reason I posted the "Tony Randall" without completing my thought is that I was just so thrilled to actually get to a point where I had something to post. Yeah, I've been sort of neglecting my blog lately. The reason may be surprising. The solution even more so.

That's a cliffhanger there. Intentionally. Tune in next time. Same bat-time, same bat- uh ....