Upshots are for Nerds: Thoughts on Finishing “Gravity’s Rainbow”


I did it and I’m here to brag. It took a month and a week but I read every word of Gravity’s Rainbow: 760 bewildering pages of coprophagia, paranoia, rocket science, puns, and words, words, words. Continue reading

Boxing Day/Christmas Day Observed Record Round-Up


The bathtub is full of eggnog. I hope it’s eggnog. My mouth is dry and my vision is clouded with pink and orange lights. Damp with perspiration, bloated with Christmas largess I fought my way to the office and turned up You Could Be Born Again by Free Design until it almost hurt. That seems to be helping. Continue reading

Real Lighter Fluid: Snowman Electrical Band Release New EP, “Christmas is King”


The recording sessions for The Snowman Electrical Band’s Christmas is King EP began by exploding a Peavy Bandit 112 guitar amplifier in the parking lot of an apartment complex in San Ramon. The band had originally intended to simply set the amp on fire, and it was harder to do than they thought. The landlord, Li Li “The Little Scorpion” Hwang, who has been arrested before for floating burning mattresses in the Bay, came out to advise: “Don’t use furniture polish. Real lighter fluid only.” Continue reading

Hitting the Skull Light: The Haunted Brady House and a New Song by the Snowman Electrical Band

brady house

Getting established

The premise of The Brady Bunch (1969-1974) is the grafting of two realities. As explained in the theme song, two families, one male and one female, are joined into the titular bunch. In this arrangement, harmony depends on the compression of personal space and identity. Episodes that involve the attic feature Freudian plot devices and reveal Oedipal tensions with occult overtones. The door to the attic is the rupture that threatens the structural logic and integrity of the house and the family inside. Continue reading

Tragic Hour- A Look Back at Halloween III: Season of the Witch

HALLOWEEN on Beta Max. Own it for just $52.99!

HALLOWEEN on Beta Max. Own it for just $52.99!

The early-to-mid-1980s was the golden age of the independent video store; it dovetailed neatly with the halcyon days of the slasher film, a graphic Horror sub-genre. It was also the era of Just Say No, Satanic panic, and “very special” episodes. What latch-key kid of the day wasn’t traumatized by the two-part “Bicycle Man” episode of Diff’rent Strokes? Danger was everywhere, especially for children.

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