Archive for December, 2007

It’s Not Called Ping Pong.

Sunday, December 30th, 2007

My brothers and I, accompanied by my friend Jon — a fellow basement ping ponger — ventured to the great lands of McCormick Place for the 2007 Killerspin Spinvitational. While its name may suggest a Bloodsport style underground multi-disciplined martial arts competition, it’s actually a big (free!) ping pong table tennis tournament.

Jon and I arrived just in time to see an 11-year-old Serbian table tennis prodigy in an exhibition match.

The second match was between some British dude and Biba, the Anna Kournikova of table tennis. Mr. British Man really wanted to be the center of attention, but the crowd was clearly more interested in Biba, especially the fellow in front of us who kept shouting throughout the entire match. Most of what he said was in some Eastern European language I didn’t understand, but often he’d just yell, “Biba! You So Beautiful!”

Buildings That Don’t Know How To Dress

Friday, December 28th, 2007

I work around North and Sheffield. There are huge buildings going up in every direction. Crews are putting the finishing touches on the British School and its adjacent parking lot. Both are clad in metal siding, but siding of slightly different color and size. It looks kind of dumb — like when I wear my corduroy jacket with corduroy pants.

Thanks, Doodlers!

Wednesday, December 26th, 2007

I was at a loss for what sort of artwork to put on the CD itself so I decided, as I often do, to let my friends do the work for me. I sent an e-mail to a select few asking them to draw a doodle a for me in exchange for a free CD. Unfortunately, I didn’t have enough room to give credit to these fine artists in the CD packaging itself, but the Internet has no word limit so I will give credit here.

A. Joe Beshenkovsky says, “It’s a plant! In a pot! I tried some other things but my artistic skills have withered away like so much old skin.” Joe and I worked together at the TV station at Columbia University. I think it looks quite nice.

B. Gordon Wright is as classy as the top hats he draws. He’s also a heck of a singer. If all goes according to plan, you can see Gordon play at the upcoming CD release show for this bad boy. In the meantime, visit his website.

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Quelf In The Name of the Farm!

Sunday, December 23rd, 2007

Every Hanukkah someone usually gets someone else a board game.  Then, after lighting candles and stuffing our faces, we usually end up playing it. This year my dad got Kelly a game called “Quelf.” I can’t tell if it’s the best game ever or the worst.  I’m not even sure if it’s actually a game.

The rules are simple: roll dice, land on a colored square, draw a card with that color on it and do what the card says.

The problem is, there’s not really a point to the cards.  One card told me to build a snorkel out of household items before my next turn and wear it for the rest of the game.  Ummmmmm.  Okay.  Kelly had to sing “Head, Shoulders Knees and Toes” in a made-up language.  Whenever someone landed on a red square we were all required to shout, “Quelf in the name of the farm!”  Often after someone finished “playing” a card we’d all shrug and say, “Well, I guess you did it” as the dice were passed to the next person.

When game ended and we were all pretty glad… and a little sad.

And now, a picture of me, my homemade snorkel and a puppy:

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Something Wrong With Me

Saturday, December 22nd, 2007

The Keeping Kosher Blues

Saturday, December 22nd, 2007

A Beautiful Day

Friday, December 21st, 2007

Express Train To Idiotville

Friday, December 21st, 2007

I’m a bad driver.  My problem is that I’m easily distracted and prone to the occasional space out.  It’s probably a good thing I don’t have a car right now.

Unfortunately my spacing-outing is not limited to driving.  I’m also a bad train rider.  I was riding what I thought was the Brown Line when the doors closed at Belmont and I heard the following announcement:

ANNOUNCER: This is a Purple Line express to Howard.  Next stop, Howard.

My ensuing spastic dance was both embarrassing and fruitless.  The doors were closed and closed they would stay as the train rumbled 7 miles north to Evanston.


Sunday, December 16th, 2007

One Pair of Shoes

Sunday, December 16th, 2007

Hey Austin!

Sunday, December 16th, 2007

Where are we going Austin, we’ve been riding for so long.
My legs are tired, Austin, I don’t think I can go on.
For so long now I’ve looked up to you, Austin,
So I’ll tell you what I’m gonna do:
Anything you ask me to.

Let’s turn back soon, Austin, ’cause it’s starting to get dark
I’ve never been this way before and my curfew’s 8 o’clock
I tell everyone you’re my best friend, Austin,
I wish that you would do the same for me.
Can we pull over ’cause I gotta pee.

Hey Austin, why you going so fast?
These legs aren’t gonna last.
Hey Austin, don’t get too far ahead
Are you trying to leave me for dead
Hey Austin, I wish I was you.

You say that we’re friend’s, Austin, when it’s just me and you.
But why do you always turn your back on me when we’re in school?
Well, everyone thinks you’re the best now, Austin,
I’ve never said, “no” to you.
All I ask is that you make me cool.

Hey Austin, where’d you get those new shoes?
Can I have some of that Baby Ruth?
Hey Austin, why are you talking to them?
Have you gone and made some new friends?
Hey Austin, I wish I was you.

Me and My Wagon

Saturday, December 15th, 2007

A Swaying Song

Saturday, December 15th, 2007

The CD is Done!

Friday, December 14th, 2007

Hooray, “One Pair of Shoes” is finally complete after who knows how long. If I hear those songs one more time I’m just going to lose it. Here’s hoping y’all don’t feel the same way.

See that CD cover on the right? The one that says “Click here to buy it now?” Yeah. Do that.

Update: You can now buy songs online at Digstation.

Knishmas at the Cubby Bear

Thursday, December 13th, 2007

KNISHMAS! It doesn’t have to be a ’silent night’ for us. Once again we groove into the night with the alternative to xmas eve alternatives.

This year we welcome back the jams of Even Sh’siyah, who infuse the southern rock grooves ala Allman Brothers with Jewish flavor for a heady groove. Their third self-release album, Wake Up, dropped this year. Joining us for the first time is Brooklyn’s RavShmuel, a Rosh Yeshiva by day and beer-drinking, Phish-following singer/songwriter by night. His single “Protocols of the Elders of Zion” became a youtube sensation following the release of his debut album, “Protocols,’ on Sony/JMG.

And as a special treat, several local singer/songwriters will perform original Jewy tunes, including Rachel Katzman (of Happy Butterfly Foot), Evan Jacover and Adam Davis (yes, that Adam Davis).