Saturday, October 1

Final Fantasy.

Good = Beautiful downtown Minneapolis.

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Better = The Minneapolis zoo.

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Best = The Minneapolis Radisson Plaza.

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Best EVER = Arcade Fire.

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(I'm in there somewhere.)

Some of those pictures are mine, most are not. I think you can tell them apart. Here's a snippet from the Minneapolis Star Tribune, reviewing the show:

Arcade Fire Rocks To Power Of 9

Having nine members in a band usually means there is either going to be a lot of soloing or somebody let the roadies and T-shirt sellers on stage.

In the case of burgeoning Canadian indie-rock band Arcade Fire -- whose concert Thursday at First Avenue sold out weeks earlier -- going from a quartet on record to a nine-piece on stage resulted in something completely mesmerizing, like a mini-orchestra full of mad-scientist musicians.

Led by husband-and-wife singers Win Butler and Regine Chassagne -- he's a mournful high-wailer like Roger Waters, and she's an animated squealer à la Björk -- the Montreal band returned to town in a position where acts such as Radiohead and the White Stripes stood years ago. The band has one acclaimed album to its name, 2004's dramatic opus "Funeral," and now the members only have to prove themselves as a live act before critics fawn over them forever.

Let the fawning begin.

Thursday's 70-minute set started with a French horn player blowing from atop the club's DJ booth, which led into the gradual crescendo of piano, violins, guitars and pulsating rhythms of "Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)."

Many of the songs worked that same formula, starting out mellow and haunting before building into a raging, hyper, string-fueled overture. The best ones in this batch were "Crown of Love" and "Headlights Look Like Diamonds" early in the show and "Rebellion (Lies)" before the one encore. A gorgeous and inspired cover of "Five Years," from the catalog of key Arcade Fire supporter David Bowie, also fit this mold.

A few other songs, including "Neighborhood #3 (Power Out)," started out hyper and became all the more high-strung. During these tunes, the nine musicians bounced wildly between instruments and/or danced with each other like performance artists.

And then there was "Wake Up," which the band saved for an encore -- the same song U2 took the stage to at Target Center only six nights earlier (Arcade Fire also opened for the Irish quartet on tour this summer). "Wake Up" had the First Avenue crowd chanting a chorus of "ooh-ooh's" the way U2 fans do in "Pride (In the Name of Love)" -- except in this case, it wasn't the 9,563rd time, and it felt downright divine.

September 30, 2005.

Enough of that. Here's the picture of that creepy shark from Lost last week.

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Wha-? What in the hell is going on?

Episode 2 was even better than episode 1, and judging from the previews for next week, everything's about to go a little ape-crap up in that island.

The Red Sox and Yankees are closing out the season with a three-game series at Fenway Park. This will determine who goes to the playoffs and who watches them from their multi-million dollar homes. The CDP doesn't have to remind you that the Boston Red Sox are very near and dear to my heart. In fact, they are so near and dear, there's a wager going on at CDP headquarters that is of truly epic proportions. As the playoffs get underway, the life-changing wager at hand will be revealed. Stay tuned.

It's October. Enjoy it.

A quick word about the new ads at the top of my page. I put them there myself, because if you click on them, I get money. Simple as that.

They won't take you anywhere bad, you can exit out of them as soon as you go there, and they will change based on what I talk about. Everyone wins, really.

I chose a format that I felt was the least intrusive and unappealing to the eye (you can barely tell that it's there).

So, if you're bored, click on them a few thousand times, and before you know it, Google will send me a check for 14 cents. If you really don't like it, or it becomes a pain in the ass, I will pull it.
AD UPDATE! There's no need to click on any of them right now (if you were planning to); I'm still working with Google to set something up. I'll give you more information when it arrives.

The CDP is selling out, and you're coming with.
I'll click, but I demand a cut of the profits. My clicking time ain't free, mister!
I can't believe you're BLAM!ing your own blog... Kidding. At least Google has more sensible non-intrusive ads than everywhere else. I'm still amazed that they keep their main search page so clean.

I have a friend that works at the Minneapolis Zoo. Pretty soon, you're going to think that I just say that about every place. I only have two zoo friends, honest.

That show looks like it was fun. Anytime you get that many people on stage, you know it's going to be a Show instead of a show.
I'll totally send my readers a cut of the profits, should I earn enough to warrant profits. If it starts to get in my way or anything that rubs me the wrong way, it's out of here.

I read an article in the Onion that said "Google Plans To Destroy All Information It Cannot Index."

What does your friend do at the Minneapolis Zoo? If he's in charge of petting that Red Panda, that's a friend you want to keep. I love those things.

The show was a Show, and it was a pretty darn good time. I'm very happy that I went. It was a 70 minute long, arms-to-the-sky sing-along session. One of the band members climbed up the PA and into the balcony, and was playing the railings with drumsticks.

The crowd was in a frenzy, but they were mostly respectful and kind. I didn't have to bust any heads.
I think she works in the education dept there, but I also think she used to have something to do with the sloths. I've never been to that zoo before, if I ever do I'm hoping I can wrangle a behind the scenes tour.

I think you should distribute ad money based on number of comments.

Frenzied but respectful crowds are the best. TMBG seems to draw crowds like that, too.
Oooh, a sloth wrangler! That sounds like a good time. It's a big, clean and well-kept zoo. Tell your friend that they're doing a great job.

Yeah, now that I listen to more "intelligent" music, I get to stand amongst more intelligent crowds. I don't miss the punk shows at all, where I'd get my ass handed to me night after night, and come home smelling like 100 other people more filthy than I was. It was fun to play them, though. I've found that a mosh is more fun if you're the one playing the music.

I have yet to see TMBG, but they are in Madison a lot. I'll check them out soon.
"Intelligent" eh? Mozart, Bach, or Beethoven would f-ing blow your mind.
You're right, I bet you had much better crowd experiences at Mozart shows.
I saw the movie Beethoven starring Charles Grodin. I didn't think it was that intelligent. Dogs are funny, though.
Today's Dilbert relates to complaining about work in a blog...

13.5 hours til I'm 21... I'm going out in Appleton with Aaron. Is that a mistake?
Yeah, that dog didn't look like he could play the piano, but I'll take her word for it.

I read Dilbert, making it one of the first times I've ever read Dilbert. I don't think I'll read Dilbert again. Dilbert.

Happy early 21st, RJ. Be careful, and remember to take off your cop hat before you do something incredibly stupid. Have a good time.
I enjoy the Dilbert. Scott Adams' non-comic books are good, too. I kept one in my desk at work and read it on lunch breaks. Someone jokingly told me that those books were considered contraband because of the negative effecton morale in the office. I quit that job a few months later with no other plans in place.
I need to quit my job. You know, shake things up around the house.

Well, shake things up around the Missus' house, as she would most certainly kick me 'oot.

Calvin & Hobbes and The Far Side need to return to the comics, if only for a day.
The Oshkosh CrapWestern brought back Calvin and Hobbes...

Is it possible to not do anything stupid if I go out drinking with Aaron and his friends?
The Post Crescent is also running the Calvin and Hobbes strip for a short time. I think it is because the new books came out. They are still funny.
Calvin and Hobbes is timeless in every sense of the word. It's been my favorite cartoon for pretty much ever.

RJ, you're a cop. You should know how to enjoy yourself while staying firmly in charge of the situation. Then again, most people should know how to do that. If you can't, you can always pepper spray someone and make a hasty retreat.
I was firmly in charge of the situation. Until we got to the bar. 10 minutes later I'm on my 4th drink, with Kara and Amanda being a bad influence. There's a picture of me passed out in the bathroom, but I don't remember getting up off the floor.
I should have just laid down a smoke screen and used my light infantry to lay down a suppressing fire while we waited for backup...
Nothing like being passed out in the bathroom. Especially if you're in a pile of your own vomit...

Party on!?!
I beat the crap out of Amanda when she was down here.

Happy birthday, 'G.
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