Wednesday, August 31, 2016

august thirty-first

Five for August 31st:

August. A long, sweaty, nasty month is almost behind us. I will always love summer but this one has been particularly brutal.

Yesterday. Good one, as far as Tuesdays go: grabbed some lunch drinks with Brian, had a picture re-grammed by the Bones Brigade Instagram account, hung out with the kids, played some drums, set up my old Vallely, and watched Guitar Wolf lay waste to the Firebird. Somewhere in there I worked eight hours.

Playing live. May be filling in on drums at a show for a friend’s band in late September. More details if it pans out. It’ll be fun to play live after a few years away from the stage.

Cool stuff. Donuts at work, remembering earplugs last night, Prince’s Biggest Fan was a 93-year-old woman, will the debates finally kill off Trump 2016?, new 22” Transformers Fortress Maximus, Unreal Engine 4 photo realism.

Lunch sesh failure. We made it all the way out to White Birch only to find the gates locked and a bunch of pond-sized puddles mucking everything up. How come everything else is dry?

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

august thirtieth

Five for August 30th:

Guitar Wolf. Tonight at Firebird. I’ve not missed them in STL since I saw them for the first time opening for the Cramps at Mississippi Nights probably fifteen years ago- and I don’t plan to start now.

Gene Wilder. The emotional impact of celebrity deaths is lessened considerably when it's more of a shock to learn that person was still alive to begin with. That said, if you don’t like Gene Wilder, you don’t have a soul. One of the all-time greats.

Summer shorts redux. Sewed up the crotch-hole, popped on a new button, and cut the legs down a bit shorter. Seems dumb to spend money on a new pair with fall just around the corner.

Cool stuff. Pumpkin bread, fresh bag of Boyd’s Original Roast for my office coffee maker, Jerry Gurney’s Blood Wizard “Destroyer” part, The Real Bob Ross, Clifton Park with Jane (pre-bee sting).

Tuesday soundtrack. Enforcer, Fang, Negative Approach, Rainbow, Dwarves, Off!, Acid Witch, Thou, Overkill.

Monday, August 29, 2016

august twenty-ninth

Five for August 29th:

Crazy from the heat. Went skating for a couple of hours with Andy on Saturday and overdid it a bit- to the tune of battling a pretty severe case of heat exhaustion for most of the rest of the weekend. I don’t usually say this, but I’m definitely ready for the fall.

Colin Kaepernick. He’s righter than you know: the national anthem is a celebration of slavery. To quote a friend, “mic dropped so hard the damn thing is in pieces”.

Back in action. I’m happy for Lisa- she’s starting back up with yoga a couple of mornings a week, and I got her road bike cleaned, oiled and aired up over the weekend. All we need now is a Burley and some decent weather and we can get back to riding some trails with the kids in tow (literally).

Cool stuff. New issue of Thrasher (with free stickers), breakfast pizza at work, fresh pair of contacts, newly-discovered drumless tracks on YouTube, bunch of free samples at Tower Grove Farmer’s Market, mouth is healed, my little cornball.

Things I didn’t do over the weekend that I intended to. Mow and weedwhack the lawn, swim at Maplewood, go see Sloppy Seconds at Fubar.

Friday, August 26, 2016

august twenty-sixth

Five for August 26th:

Office helper. Jane came in to work with me for a bit this morning. She met some coworkers, had a slice of lemon poppyseed bread, and played with my Greedo Star Wars figure and the fingerboard bowl. Basically what I do on any given day.

Car woes. Literally the minute I got off the phone with the auto place where I learned I was going to have to drop a grand on car repairs this afternoon, "Trust Your Mechanic" by the Dead Kennedys came on Spotify. If that's not an omen, I don't know what is.

Kids are afraid of Donald Trump. Ahh, just the kind of inspiration I know we’re all looking for in a United States president.

Cool stuff. Popcorn Friday, morning roll in the Dobbs parking lot, homemade burritos, George a year ago today, Ranchito with Tom and Brian, Blockhead Splendid Eye Torture on YouTube.

Weekend action. The good news: no major oral surgeries happening this weekend. The bad news: no real plans either, save for maybe going to see Sloppy Seconds at Fubar on Sunday. Hopefully the weather is good for some park action, skating, and pool-going.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

august twenty-fifth

Five for August 25th:

This morning. Up at 5 am for some reason. Watched some Duel at Diablo on Youtube, drank a pot of coffee, set up a board, hung out with the kids, scarfed down a fiery scramble at Southwest Diner, and came to work. In that order.

Summer shorts. At the beginning of summer I buy a new pair of shorts and basically wear them to death. By the end of the season they’re faded, threadbare, and essentially destroyed from 3 months of bike riding, skating, sweating, and chasing kids around. With September just around the corner I noticed the tear in the crotch forming yesterday, and sure enough the button popped off last night. Like clockwork.

There’s always something. The brakes on my car are starting to grind, which is never a good thing. Taking it in early tomorrow- here’s hoping for a quick and cheap turnaround.

Cool stuff. Tony Hawk “Claw” deck, every Gamespot Game of the Year ever, meet the Iran BMX locals, Consolidated/Infinity sticker, backyard tomato haul.

Thursday soundtrack. Suicide, Buzzcocks, Gun Club, The Stooges, The Sword, Run DMC, Lungfish, Helmet, Danava, Diablo Blvd, Venom.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

august twenty-fourth

Five for August 24th:

Enter sandman. Fell out at 8:30 last night following a sleep-free two day span. Feels nice to have the batteries recharged, as I was starting to feel like a dead man walking.

Deep cleaning. We got the house power-washed last week. The dude was out there working on it for the entire day, blasting off years of grass stains, mildew, dead insects, and whatever else. Looks like new.

Lifers. Completely forgot about this Vimeo series centered on old(er) dudes who still ride BMX. This one is my personal favorite, but they’re all worth a watch.

Cool stuff. Smoked almonds, Rad on DVD, afternoon White Birch session with Brian, bagworm eradication, leftover pesto pasta.

Goldeneye. This footage of the unreleased Xbox version of N64's Goldeneye surfaced recently and is fucking unreal, even if the upgraded graphics now look super primitive by today’s standards.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

august twenty-third

Five for August 23rd:

Sleepless night. Don’t know if it was the exhilaration of bike riding, the late afternoon latte, or the fact that I had to let Henry out twice to relieve himself in the middle of the night, but I didn’t fall asleep till sometime after 3 am. All said, somehow not feeling terrible.

Park action. Pretty much every parent/child combo in Clifton Heights was at the playground last night taking advantage of the unseasonably mild weather. A good reminder of how awesome our neighbors and neighborhood are.

The more you know. Until a few months ago, I would have assumed Reince Priebus was some second-tier character from Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Turns out he's a real guy!

Cool stuff. Free D’Addario coffee mug, new Independent hoodie coming today, remembering to bring lunch, morning roll, Sega Smash Pack revisited, link-free blog post.

Tuesday soundtrack. Lard, Ministry, Nine Pound Hammer, Shrinebuilder, Motorhead, Murphy’s Law, Napalm Death, Black Moth, Deicide.

Monday, August 22, 2016

august twenty-second

Five for August 22nd.

Bike commuting. Nice, cool, hint-of-fall-ish ride in to work this morning. Been a bit since I rode in, mostly due to the insufferable heat of the last few weeks. Hopeful I can continue this as much as possible well into the early winter.

Dental work. Got my last two wisdom teeth yanked Saturday morning. They were both out in less than two minutes and I didn’t feel a thing. Popping some Penicillin per doctor’s orders, but I haven’t even had to mess with the pain pills they gave me. I’m just glad to finally have it over with.

Bowie. Jane pretty much only wants to listen to (and dance to) “Magic Dance” from the Labyrinth soundtrack these days.

Cool stuff. Root beers and Depot dogs with Jane, short skate session at JB, checking out the mini ramp at the World’s Fare at Forest Park, fried egg and avocado on toast, I Scream ice cream kebabs, my little dude, new toolbox.

Quote of the day. "The singer sounds like a death metal chihuahua attacking your fucking ankle". –Brian commenting on this song/video.

Friday, August 19, 2016

august nineteenth

Five for August 19th.

Hell Night. Their first show with Brian went off last night, as expected. They played great and the place was packed. Super rad to see my two best bros up on stage crushing it.

Skateboarding. A few curb slaps on the way in this morning and an afternoon sesh at White Birch if the weather holds up.

For the win. NYC Parks Dept. on naked Trump statue: "NYC Parks stands firmly against any unpermitted erection in city parks, no matter how small."

Cool stuff. Jane and George’s first time at Happy Joe’s, getting paid, pot luck at work today, Spitfire MK1 Flying Glider, new triple guitar rack, the first nail in the coffin for for-profit prisons.

Weekend action. This weekend will probably be pretty action-free on account of me getting two wisdom teeth pulled tomorrow morning. Been putting it off for years, and it’s time. Hopefully I’ll be good to do some stuff Sunday.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

august eighteenth

Five for August 18th.

Tonight. Taking the crew to Happy Joe’s for some pizza, games, and to get Jane a toy gorilla, then heading to Fubar for Hell Night’s first show with Brian on vocals. Come bleed out your eardrums.

In the backyard. Tomatoes are starting to get red, the butternut squash is coming up like crazy, re-cleared the vines off the back fence, Jane is learning to shred.

Quote of the day. “The president of professionally anti-gay-for-a-profit Family Research Council, Tony Perkins' home was just destroyed by the Lord in a great flood. Only out of Christian concern did I remind him of where this places him in any Noah analogy. A lady never lets her gloat show.” –Mrs. Betty Bowers, America’s Best Christian

Cool stuff. Tim Horton’s at the office, The Rebirth of the Big-O, potential afternoon skate session, eco k-cup restock, Stranger Things type generator, Boxed Winking Owl, The Flat Side of Things 3.

Thursday soundtrack. Bouncing Souls, Mercyful Fate, Ghoul, Revocation, Blues Pills, Saxon, Blackfoot, Nuclear Assault.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

august seventeenth

Five for August 17th.

Modesto. Had a great last hurrah there last night with Lisa- the site of many dates and special occasions over the years. Drank sangria, scarfed up some old staples and topped it off with some bread pudding and good conversation. I’ll miss that place.

First day of 36th grade. Happy anniversary to the single funniest and most perfectly-timed Facebook post in history. May it live on forever.

Searching for Chin. To quote Johnny Rad, “my wheels are itching”. May have to hit Webster for a little bit tonight after the kids go to bed and get rolling now that the rains have subsided.

Cool stuff. Stranger Things season 2 confirmed as a sequel, the media vs. Donald Trump, cheap Independent hoodie from Skate Warehouse, jasmine tea restock.

The thing about houses. They always look better in the pictures.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

august sixteenth

Five for August 16th.

Happy birthday Mom. Happy 69th to my mom, who has endured more stressful bullshit over this past year than anyone should ever have to deal with and somehow remained level-headed enough to roll with the punches and emerge largely unscathed on the other side. Here’s to a much better next twelve months.

Last night. Fun evening at Foam catching the Jag-Wires debut gig (songs about The Rockford Files and Booger’s “High On Stress” t-shirt from Revenge of the Nerds won the night) and catching up with a bunch of friends I hadn’t seen in awhile.

Eleven. Bummer news about the best music ‘zine this city has seen in a long time, but congrats to Evan for bringing it back from the brink of irrelevance and completely knocking it out of the park the last few years. It was great while it lasted.

Cool stuff. Thrasher t-shirt for Jane, donuts at work, Dennis Enarson Down the Street video debut, got my Epiphone back, 78K+ pageviews, homemade chili, Hell Night article in the RFT.

Tuesday soundtrack. Cactus, Voivod, Leaf Hound, Meshuggah, Poison Idea, GBH, Neurosis, Hermano, Kowloon Walled City, Shadows Fall, Burning Witch.

Monday, August 15, 2016

august fifteenth

Five for August 15th.

Waterworld. An overnight deluge that continued straight through the morning left the basement wet and the drive in to work harrowing. Time to bust out the umbrellas and the box fans.

This week. Busy one. In addition to the normal forty-hour workweek, parenting, and trying to find time to skate, there’s the inaugural Jag-Wires show tonight at Foam, dinner at Modesto tomorrow night (for the last time) with Lisa, mom’s birthday, Brian’s first show with Hell Night at Fubar, and getting my last two wisdom teeth pulled.

Deck the walls. Changed up the display in the attic to a solid wall of Santa Cruz/Jim Phillips boards. The old one was getting stale, and with the addition of that Bod Boyle “Stained Glass” deck (which is the sickest graphic ever), it just had to happen. Digging it.

Cool stuff. Cheap Dreamcast for some Shenmue action, new issue of Ride BMX, drinks with Mary and Keith, checking out Eric and Nicole’s new pad, Assault on SoCal video, burgers at Five Guys with the family, another $25 gift card, Super Mario 64 adventures with Jane.

Never too old. Met this dude at JB over the weekend named Rick. He’s 68 years old (my mom's age), has been skating for forty years, and had been out since seven am cruising around to different parks and murdering bowls on an old Valterra. This guy is living proof that the Jay Adams quote "you didn't quit skateboarding because you got old, you got old because you quit skateboarding" is spot on.

Friday, August 12, 2016

august twelfth

Five for August 12th.

Xbox down. Looks like my old vintage Xbox officially crapped out at some point recently- which I learned this morning while trying to turn on Crimson Skies ("the airplane game") for Jane. Hooked up the old Nintendo 64 and we busted out some Mario Kart instead, for the win.

Epiphone home. I’ll be reclaiming my old thin-body Epiphone Les Paul on Monday night after an eight-year residency in Kevin’s basement, completing the trifecta of LP-shaped guitars in my attic that aren’t actually proper Les Pauls.

Modesto. So bummed to hear they’re closing their doors next weekend. It’s been our staple, go-to date night spot for as long as we’ve been together. I don’t get why a successful restaurant that is always amazing and has the market on tapas more or less cornered in a city would close to open some dime-a-dozen pizza place, but I guess all good things must come to an end.

Cool stuff. An Open Letter to Ivanka Trump from Michael Moore: 'Your Dad Is Not Well', leftover homemade pizza, new Assault HMC decks, $25 cash spiff, The Story Behind the Cover of Metallica’s Black Album (written by a good friend of mine), Hoffmam Bikes Trilogy DVD, Janey jams.

Weekend action. Drinks on the back patio with Mary and Keith, morning skate session, mowing the lawn, hitting the pool, taking the kids to Happy Joe’s.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

august eleventh

Five for August 11th.

Freebies. Another day, another vendor meeting, another haul of music swag. Picked up two new NS capos (standard and soundhole), a headstock tuner, box of nickel bronze strings, and t-shirt this morning, courtesy of the good people at D’Addario. No beating that.

Afternoon skate session. Had a fun one with Brian at White Birch today, but the 105-degree heat index was a bit much to take. Luckily they had some shades up.

Grosso’s Loveletters to Skateboarding. Truck Wars, Part 2 has officially hit the internet airwaves. Go watch.

Cool stuff. Hanging out with the goobers, blueberry Kind bars, amazing photos of the soon-to-be-vacated downtown YMCA, Sloppy Seconds at Fubar later this month.

Not that he’ll actually do it. Because he’s a spineless chickenshit. An Open Letter to Paul Ryan on Why He Must Denounce Donald Trump.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

august tenth

Five for August 10th.

Quote of the day. “Donald Trump makes death threats because he’s a pathetic coward who can’t handle the fact that he’s losing to a girl.” -Elizabeth Warren

Ronnie James Dio hologram performing live. Be careful- for there are some things which cannot be unseen.

Demo reel. Came across a CDR of five or six demo cuts of Blind Eyes songs that ultimately appeared on With a Bang, which we recorded fast, loose, and live at Firebrand one afternoon so Brian could learn them on bass for a few shows he did with us. They actually sound great. Thinking about putting them up on Youtube or something for people to check out if so inclined.

Cool stuff. Vernon’s with Tom, extended morning with the kids, downtown Chris’ Pancakes, work coffee restock, Jessica Jones on Netflix, cherry Twizzlers.

Current setup. Been riding this Vision Lee Ralph “modern concave” reissue with Indy 169s, 56mm Spitfire Formula Fours, and some OG drill-through rails for the last few weeks and am loving it. I’ve brought other boards out to some sessions for variety and just keep coming back to it. Total old man sled, but hey, I know what I like.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

august ninth

Five for August 9th.

Evening session. Met up with Andy at JB last night for a two-hour skate jam and closed the place down. Gotta get those night sessions in while we can, with the days getting shorter-ish and fall looming in the not-so-distant future.

Trout Lodge. Lisa is there for a work retreat for her new job. The last (and only) time I was there was for sixth grade camp way back in 1980-whatever. I don’t have many memories of the place other than going to some cave, tormenting our counselor (who was really into the Bullet Boys), failing a morning room inspection, and getting into a pillow fight with Chad that devolved into an actual fist fight. Apparently it’s pretty nice though.

Must watch. A remarkable montage of the Republican candidate for President of the United States flipping on virtually every position he's drawn breath to hold. His limited vocabulary makes it quite easy to find literal contradictions.

Cool stuff. David Cross Making America Great Again on Netflix, Hawaiian sweet rolls, Productivity- GT 2017, Ranchito with Brian and Craig, late night drumming.

Tuesday soundtrack. Atheist, Doomriders, Corrosion of Conformity, Gray Matter, Uriah Heep, Black Flag, Valient Thorr, Hypnos, Bang, Year of the Goat, Dictators, Rose Tattoo.

Monday, August 8, 2016

august eighth

Five for August 8th.

Lawn mower. For the first time in my adult life, I own an actual, proper, gas-powered lawnmower. Not a reel mower, or an electric mower, or some other bullshit. Mowed my entire yard in 15 minutes yesterday, including the dreaded between-houses hillside. I realize there are few things less interesting than this, but for me it’s a serious game changer.

Zoo crew. Had a blast with Jane at the zoo yesterday morning. Saw some animals, rode the train, petted guinea pigs, ate Dippin’ Dots, had an obligatory stop at the gift shop, and topped it off with a trip to Turtle Park. Best times.

Skateboarding. Finally made it out to Washington to skate the park with Andy and Tucker for a couple hours Saturday morning. Definitely a cool spot- plunked down smack in the middle of a disused tennis court. Super fun.

Cool stuff. Breakfast at Chris’ with the crew, sno-cones and Labyrinth in the park, Elliot Sloan backyard vert contest photos, new SC Bod Boyle “stained glass” reissue ordered, $25 gift card at work, grande coffee, rad sunrise, Manowar lyrics generator, are you ready for the end of the Republican party?

Morning meetings. One this morning, one tomorrow, and two vendor meetings on Wednesday and Thursday, respectively. Luckily the next three are all at the normal time. One down and already over it.

Friday, August 5, 2016

august fifth

Five for August 5th:

Happy Friday. Any morning where you're greeted with the news of George Zimmerman being punched in the face is a good one indeed.

DP Disaster. Bummer to see Duane Peters slowly but surely imploding in real time. Hope he can get some help before things go from "worse" to "over".

Movie night. The third annual Clifton Park Movie Night is this Saturday. Lisa and crew once again did an amazing job orchestrating this event and it looks like this might be the biggest one ever. It’s going to be a beautiful evening, so come on out, bring some drinks, and watch Labyrinth with us.

Cool stuff. Donald Trump collapses in three key states, Jerry Seinfeld on skateboarding, getting paid, new Assault HMC decks coming soon, empty mansion hunting.

Weekend action. Tre Serpenti and the Mercs at Tap Room, Washington skate session with Andy and crew, movie in the park, hitting the pool, buying a real lawn mower.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

august fourth

Five for August 4th.

Tonight. Time to buckle down and mow the lawn after a few days of rain and general midsummer laziness. Gonna be a scorcher.

Skateboarding in the Olympics. Looks like it’s official as of yesterday, and of course people all over the internet are freaking out. Ultimately it doesn’t make any difference at all. If you like skating, go skate. Your boardslide isn’t going to feel any different because someone is winning a medal every four years.

Ballin’. Spent the last three evenings shooting hoops at Clifton Park with some neighborhood dad-friends while our kids played on the playground. We’re not any good, but it’s been fun.

Cool stuff. NOS Elephant Brand Skateboards shirt, bagels at work, morning shadow puppet shows with Jane, Banned in Babylon, Mike Gray Haro 2016, Wax the Coping: Sean Cliver interview, Trump aides are apparently suicidal, turkey & avocado sliders, free Wedgie picks.

Thursday soundtrack. Kylesa, Suicidal Tendencies, Public Enemy, Witchfinder General, Alice Cooper, Tweak Bird, Tilts, Goatsnake, W.A.S.P.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

august third

Five for August 3rd.

Emergen-C. A couple thousand milligrams of Vitamin C should shelter me from the seasonal cold George and Lisa are now enduring. Or at least provide me with a temporary placebo until it hits me like a ton of bricks.

Instagram Stories. Maybe their dumbest, most pointless feature yet. It’s still my favorite and by-far most used app, but more and more I find myself longing for the days of it just being a cool place to look at photos, and not have to be constantly inundated with slogging streaming video, ads, follow suggestions, trends, and now whatever this lame thing is.

Required reading. There is something very wrong with Donald Trump. “A normal politician knows that no matter how much criticism gets under the skin, the thing to do is to smile and wave it off. You don’t have to mean it. You don’t even have to appear to mean it. But it is what you do, if only to avoid compounding the damage. Trump cannot make this simple self-serving calculation. He must attack everyone who opposes him, even after he has defeated them … The most important fact is that he is unable to control his responses to criticism. He must double down every time, even if it means digging himself deeper and deeper into the hole.”

Cool stuff. Nearly every issue of Nintendo Power is now available for free online, voting for good people, Starbucks at the office, cappuccino boba tea, morning drums.

Better late than never. Oh yeah, I guess I should finish this post I started at 8:30 this morning.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

august second

Five for August 2nd:

Busy season. It’s kicking in at work, big time. I am mentioning this in anticipation of possibly missing some days of writing in this thing when the shit hits the fan. I’m not dead, just buried.

Voting day. Get out and vote well. Here’s a handy cheat sheet you can use if you live in Missouri and care about things that aren’t centered around nonsense like guns, suppression of human rights, and Jesus.

The sad tuth. At this point, I'm pretty sure Donald Trump could walk out onto a stage, piss on a bible, shove an American flag up his ass, and call everyone in the audience a bunch of losers and his supporters would still only be able to utter the words "Benghazi" and "emails".

Cool stuff. GT BMX 2017 overview, lunch with Brian, Homage: The T-1 Ramp, basketball at the park with Jane, Peter Hewitt Independent video.

Tuesday soundtrack. Le Betre, Gluecifer, Orange Goblin, Hawkwind, Frank Black, X, Speedwolf, Armored Saint, Fugazi, Alice Cooper, Morphine.

Monday, August 1, 2016

august first

Five for August 1st.

Weekendery. This was a good one. Got in some skating and BMX’ing at JB, an ice cream date with Jane, a trip to the pool, some drumming, a barbecue, hit a couple of playgrounds, and got a bunch of stuff done around the house- all in unseasonably nice weather.

Skate shoes. Picked up a new pair of Vans over the weekend after my last pair Cons from the Marshall's discount rack officially kicked the bucket- there was literally no grip left on them. Feels good to be back on the waffle soles.

The attic. Did some cleaning/rearranging up in the skate/music/game lair last night, tossed out a bunch of stuff, de-cluttered and just sorta made some sense of it. Plenty more to do ultimately, but it’s a start.

Cool stuff. Stranger Things to get second season, 30 years of the Screaming Hand, meet the big-name republicans supporting Clinton, Democrats become the party of security, patriotism, optimism—without becoming Republicans, bruschetta burgers, new gate for the living room, homemade tostadas,

Quote of the week. “Honestly, the main takeaway from these two [convention] weeks is that, incredibly, we may be on the brink of electing such a damaged, sociopathic narcissist that the simple presidential duty of comforting the families of fallen soldiers may actually be beyond his capabilities—and I genuinely did not think that was a part of the job that someone could be bad at.” -John Oliver