Escape From the Scooby Doo Mansion

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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Gettin' Busy with Thin Lizzy

I love Saint Paul, but frankly I'm not a big fan of celebrating St. Pat's in St. Paul because between the Celtic Kitsch overload and the suburban tourists, it tends to turn into amateur hour pretty damn fast - O'Gara's being pretty much ground zero for this particularly noxious muppet show. So my two options are: stay home; or, go across the river. Fortunately, this year E-Funk and G-Funk of the Triple Rock Social Club provided an excellent option - a Thin Lizzy tribute night at their humble establishment. This may come a shock to you, but I loves me some hanging out with cool people, drinking good beer, getting my ass rocked by live bands, and I especially loves me some Thin Lizzy (yep, I've still got Jailbreak on cassette).

In fact, an early victim of my Thin Lizzyphilia was none other than Admiral Nelson, who endured repeat Jailbreak playings at a nearly North Korean brain-washing level upon several road trips to and from Da Yoop. So naturally, when I heard about last night's festivities, I called the Admiral to tell him that not only is there going to be a jailbreak, but in fact, the boys will be back in town.

We got there a little early and got take leisurely stroll down memb'ry lane with Billy Morissette. Naturally, the Brian Boru Pipe Band had to smash through the front door and show us all how to kick really, really old school.

Later, there was rock and roll. And I looked upon it and pronounced it good. To be honest, I didn't even catch the band names, which is a little embarrassing because I met the guys from band #2 a few months ago (sorry, Grumpy Steve). Doesn't matter really, the important thing is that the flame of our memory of Phil Lynott was kindled anew last night by the mighty power of rock and roll.

Special Bonus Video: Thin Lizzy performs "Jailbreak" to Crowd of Tranquilized Romanian Eighth-Graders

Seriously, what the hell is wrong with that audience? I've seen stunned trout with more life.

P.S. the muppets known as "Bono Vox" and "The Edge" ain't worthy of carrying Phil Lynott's sweaty jock. That's right, I said it. Now go find whatever it is you were looking for and quit making such pretentious crap music.

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Sunday, March 16, 2008

Weekend Beer Reviews (AKA learn from my mistakes, grasshopper)

Y'know what? I like beer. I like beer a lot. I also like, to much lesser extent, tomato juice. Furthermore, I like clams. So when I was at The Boyfriend Store on Saturday and I saw this product in the cooler,
I said to myself, "aw, what the hell?" That's right my friends, some crazy bastard in St. Louis (and here I thought that Springfield was where I could find all the crazy bastards in the Show Me State) decided that what Budweiser beer was truly missing was the addition of tomato juice and clam broth. Naturally, I couldn't say no. And ya know what? It wasn't that bad. Ever have a bloody mary with a beer back? Well, imagine if the proportions were reversed and you mixed it all together... and then added clam juice. Not for everyone, but I found the first few sips to be fairly enjoyable. And then I just got tired of it. My biggest complaint is that the 24 oz. can is just waaaaay too much Chelada for one session. I think this is a beer-like product that is best consumed at about 8 ounces at a time.

Final Grade: C+ (I'll probably drink it again if somebody else pays for it and my only other choice is lukewarm Sunny D)

Every beer-loving instinct in my body told me that buying a 4-pack of Horny Goat Wheat tallboys was huge mistake. But dammit, I love me some tallboy drinkin', and I love me some beer that may be underpriced for its value (as my friend Ugly Juice is on an eternal quest for the perfect $10 shiraz, so am I on a ceaseless journey for some underappreciated brew that I can get for less than $10 a twelver - it's never going to happen, but that doesn't stop me). So, at $3.99, a 4-pack o' tallboys sounded like it was worth a gamble. Well, like Kenny Rogers taught us so many years ago - ya gotta know when to walk away, know when to run.

I should have ran.

My first warning sign should have been the use of a cartoon character to market the brew. We all know that the only beer that can or should be marketed via cartoon is Hamms, as demonstrated below:

See how it works? You watch those crazy "from the land of sky-blue waters (waters)/comes the beer refreshing/Hamm's - the beer refreshing/ Hamm's!!!!" commercials during a North Stars game when you're nine years old - and 25 years later, you're smashed out of your gourd at Grumpy's, being embraced by a large man in a bear custom. It's quite simple, really.

If you think some effing goat is gonna compete with that, you've got another thing coming.

Now, I can forgive a crappy marketing technique if you've got a decent brew. Horny Goat claims it is "a Belgian-Style white beer, craft-brewed with wheat, malted barley, hops, and a bit of orange peel and coriander." My guess is that the alleged "orange peel" is actually powdered Tang, which unless you're an astronaut, is not exactly a flavor you're looking for in a beer. After that initial blast of powdered citrus noxium, the beer settles into a general state of funkiness reminiscent of the backstage restroom at the 7th Street Entry, followed by a cloying, hey-is-it-just-me-or-is-something-burning? aftertaste. Learn from my mistake, friends, and avoid the Horny Goat at all costs.

Final Grade: D- (What's that? You're offering a jar actual goat urine rather than this wretched brew? Why, don't mind if I do!)

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Saturday, March 15, 2008

Everyone's a Critic, and Most People are DJs.

So help me out, friends - if I were to start spinnin' like DJs Spock and Sue Teller, what should my DJ name be? "DJ Pirate of Selby Avenue" doesn't exactly roll off the tongue, and rumor has it that "DJ Jazzy Jeff" was already taken some time ago. Here's a few monikers I've thought of:
  • Bastards of Fun
  • Husker Don't
  • The Barrister of Booty
  • I Hate Wearing Pants
  • The Dingo That Ate Your Baby
  • Hotdish
  • Total Bastards, Inc.
So, whatch think?

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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Attention, Sad Bastards: Denmark is the Happiest Place on Earth and We Now Have Video Evidence

So yer mopin' around because it's been a long, cold winter. Boo effin' hoo. Well, turn that Death Cab Sad Bastard music down for a minute and take a cue from the Danes:
If it is happiness you are seeking a move to Denmark could be in order, according to the first scientist to make a world map of happiness.

Adrian White, from the UK's University of Leicester, used the responses of 80,000 people worldwide to map out subjective wellbeing.

Denmark came top, followed closely by Switzerland and Austria. The UK ranked 41st. Zimbabwe and Burundi came bottom.

Want proof? Denmark's current top musical export is a song called "Fascination" by some overly-cheerful young Dane-things called Alphabeat. Imagine if "Walking on Sunshine" by Katrina and the Waves, "Modern Love" by David Bowie, and "Tenderness" by General Public got together to have intimate relations that are illegal in 35 states - the resulting love-bastard would probably sound like this song. Here's the video, try not to go into a diabetic coma watching it:

Naturally, some brilliant DJ named Dunproofin' bootlegged a mashup of this song with The Futureheads' mighty-clever "Hounds of Love" cover. How ya like them apples, Kate Bush? Check it out here.

Special bonus confirmation evidence that Danes are the goofiest goons on Odin's green earth, "Rhythm Bandits" by Junior Senior:

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Sunday, March 09, 2008

Minnesota Girls: Boy Crazy... Booze Crazy... Boat Crazy!!!

They made a movie about it, so it must be true.

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Saturday, March 08, 2008

This post is strictly 4 the gangstaz

Before reading any further, stop and ask yourself if your gangsta quotient is equal to or higher than that of this OG:

I don't really have any deep thoughts to share with all y'all today, so I think the best I can give you is a random jumble of things I'm digging on right:
  • Friday Night Fish Fry at The Groveland Tap. One of my many weaknesses is for batter-fried sea critters - and the Tap does it just right. Ten bucks gets you a pint of Summit and endless baskets of cod. Just kill me now.
  • Guided By Voices - "I am a Tree."
  • Hockey. Goddamn am I loving hockey right now. I don't care if it's NHL, college, high school, men, women, or a couple of kids on a frozen pond. If it involves a puck and ice, I wanna see it.
  • Husker Du - "Celebrated Summer." I saw Bob Mould play this one live on Wednesday and it was definitely one of the highlights of the show. The Husker Du albums New Day Rising and Flip Your Wig were pretty the soundtrack to my summer in 1988 - and ya know what, they both still sound pretty damn good today - which is better than I can say for Join the Army by Suicidal Tendencies. The funny thing is that Husker Du actually broke up over the '87-'88 winter, so I was in this weird position of becoming smitten with a band that had fallen apart just before I had a chance to see them. I ran into bassist Greg Norton that summer at the Wabasha Street Northern Lights (that's right folks, we actually used to have record store downtown). The conversation, to my eternal embarassment, went a little bit like this:
    • Young Pirate: Hey, you're Greg Norton!
    • Greg: yep.
    • Young Pirate: You were in Husker Du!
    • Greg: yep.
    • Young Pirate: You guys broke up!
    • Greg: yep.
    • Young Pirate: That sucks!
    • Greg: yep.

Sorry, Greg.
  • Minnesota Kitsch. If you know me, you know I'm a huge Minnesota "statriot" (y'know, kinda being a patriot, but for a state). My recent voyage to an undisclosed location only confirmed my love for the land of sky blue waters. Lately, I've taken great satisfaction in seeing images like these:

  • The city of Butte, Montana really doesn't have a whole lot going for it, but at least they picked an awesome name for their football team:

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