Sunday, May 20, 2012

2012 Spring/Summer Coed All Star Game

This was the first year I had a chance to play in the local coed all-star game and it was a blast. Somewhere way back when, I think it was my idea to start having these games (pat my own back for a second) but all of the real credit goes to my wife who, somehow, has managed to run this league on top of the 1000 other things she does that I cannot keep track off. She is truly amazing and is doing a great job in making sure the league is up and running. Events like this are just icing on the cake.

Note: Technically I was not selected as an all-star. I apparently get an automatic spot since I am a team captain. Fair play...just wanted to make sure I got that out there. I firmly believe there are better players than me who did not step on that field today.

sermons are the first to rest

I've been enjoying the new Bruce Springsteen album and Damien Jurado these days. Both artists from a while back for me. Starting to dabble in a little reggae (Rebelution), an old favorite with Bon Iver and some new bands like Lulu Mae and Tyler Lyle starting to hit the playlists these days...

1.        Towers  *  Bon Iver
2.        Crash This Train  *  Joshua James
3.        The Golden Age & The Silver Girl  *  Tyler Lyle
4.        Like A Star  *  Corinne Bailey Rae
5.        The Man With the Golden Toy  *  Lulu Mae
6.        All of Me  *  Tanlines
7.        Comfort Zone  *  Rebelution
8.        Plage  *  Crystal Fighters
9.        The Wave  *  Miike Snow
10.     Brothers  *  Tanlines
11.      Beacon Hill  *  Damien Jurado
12.      Shackled and Drawn  *  Bruce Springsteen
13.      Gospel Plow  *  Charlie Parr
14.      California  *  Tyler Lyle
15.      Love Love Love  *  Avalanche City
16.      A Year In the Garden Shed  *  Tigers on Trains
17.     American Daydream  *  Electric Guest
18.      The Unbearable Lightness (From A Balcony In Old Town Square)  *  Tyler Lyle
19.      Rocky Ground  *  Bruce Springsteen
20.     Only Now  *  JBM
21.      Manila  *  Cal Tjader, Mongo Santamaria & Willie Bobo   

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Never too old for stories...

A person’s never too old for stories. Man and boy, girl and woman, we live for them. - Roland Deschain

In the end, the wind takes everything, doesn't it? And why not? Why other? If the sweetness of our lives did not depart, there would be no sweetness at all.

I've always been a big fan of Stephen King and his latest book was a welcome surprise. The Wind Through the Keyhole is a Dark Tower novel and brings back the Gunslinger Roland Deschain and his ka-tet (his group of friends brought together by fate). King has a way of creating worlds and the world of the Dark Tower has a strong gravitational pull. Within pages I was immediately back in Mid-World and thinking I might be tempted to read this entire series again... 

The crazy thing about this book is that it singles out a moment in between books 4 and 5 in the series and consists of Roland telling a story about his youth to the rest of his ka-tet. In this middle of this story, the younger Roland proceeds to tell a story to a young boy that he has taken under his wing. Each of these three stories are all related and King never skips a beat in weaving all three and keeping you interested. It is a world within a world within a world. Or a story within a story within a story. Pretty awesome. 

Sunday, May 13, 2012

The Tortilla Curtain

This was the first book I have ever read by T.C. Boyle and will probably not be my last. The Tortilla Curtain explores the tension of immigration trends in southern California, the consumerist nature of the American Dream and also a number of environmental issues. Pack that in with a heavy dose of biblical Job-like tragedy and you are looking at the perfect storm of bad events that befall the main characters. There were a few moments where I thought the course of tragic events was a bit too tragic. Afterall, I like a little redemption or hope in the books I read. Despite the fact that hope was apparently not on Boyle's mind, this story was gripping, and the characters' emotional conflicts were fascinating. The fact that the story explored a major hot topic in the upcoming election made it even more interesting to me. The writing flew off the page, so much so that I'll be looking for another Boyle book soon...perhaps just one that is not 100% tragedy.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Sigur Rós - Varúð

Found this video last night and am getting more and more excited about seeing Sigur Rós this summer. The imagery and scenes in this (unofficial) video are completely amazing. You should definitely watch this. The song is incredible. Can't wait.

Thursday, May 10, 2012


Canailles showed up at FIL2012 and totally blew me away. I took this photo that night and thought it captured a bit of their spirit as I was flipping through photos this evening.

Check out this video below for a taste of their music. Highly recommended.

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Timelessness is the task of music and painting...

"...the instant before something comes into focus is more exciting than any sharp uncertainty...Photography, child, is about the passing of time. Capturing is the goal of literature. Timelessness is the task of music and painting. But a good photograph holds time just as a vase holds water. The water will evaporate and the vase becomes a memorial to it. What separates a snapshot from a masterpiece is that the latter is a metaphor for patience."
- Miguel Syjuco, Illustrado

When I first started reading books from or about the Philippines, it was primarily to make sure I would appreciate the culture of such a unique part of the world that we had the opportunity to visit. By the time I had finished the second, I was already back in Lafayette and that did not matter a bit because I had stumbled onto a gem. Illustrado (a reference to the Filipino educated class during the Spanish colonial period) is about a student who explores the sudden death of his teacher Crispin Salvador who is a fictional "controversial lion of Philippine literature," and by doing so, explores 150 years of Philippine history along the way. This book was a great read during our trip and a welcome memory of our time in the Philippines when I finished it a couple weeks much so that I promised myself that I would jot it down for memory's sake.

I found this book in a local book shop called Solidaridad in Manila (photo below). I'll be honest. I bought it purely because of how it felt in my hand. I'll remember it for passages like those quoted above.