Category Archives: Musings

Drawing a Blank

I’ve wanted to post here more often, but I’ve been kind of a loss of things to write about lately. I guess there are a lot of reasons for that, but I’m hoping to change it. I will be writing about seeing JJAMZ tonight, who were a lot of fun, but I will do it when it’s not past midnight because I have pictures to upload. I actually set out just now to write a post about coming to terms with being a hipster, but it was one of those entries that sounded a lot better in my head.

In all honesty, my life has been fairly routine the last few weeks. Been watching a lot of Breaking Bad in an attempt to try to finish the show before what I thought was going to be the series finale yesterday. About halfway through season three at the moment. Been trying to get myself into a routine at the gym. Been watching a lot of soccer. Been having a lot of game nights. Work. Nothing particularly exciting, which has hampered my creativity.

Also haven’t been doing much that would require the use of my new camera. Have some fun photos that I’ve been meaning to post from the first few weeks I had it, but I just haven’t gotten around to that. I will. I’ll write more. I’ll take the camera out more. Yup.

I got a new toy

I’ve been M.I.A. lately. I did get a new toy last week. I’m absolutely loving it.

taken with my new toy

The camera. Not Bruce.

On Fantasy Sports

I spent a large part of my evening assembling my Euro Cup Fantasy Team. It’s an exhausting process. If my MLS experience was any indication, I’m sure that between now and June 8th, I am going to be changing this lineup as much as I possibly can when I still have unlimited transfers. We’ll see. But with this around the corner and the MLS season in full swing, I’m slowly starting to learn all of the games this fantasy sports business does with your head.

For a large part of my life, I’ve had a serious aversion to all things sports. Being half-Italian, soccer has always kind of been in my blood, but it wasn’t something I followed seriously until after World Cup 2006. Nor was it something I was at all fanatical about until the last few years. Something changed in the last few years and while I have no desire to turn to American football or any other similar sport, I now understand the painfully delightful thrill of being a sports fan.

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Comfort Music

The Avengers came out. I saw it at midnight and am still fan girling about it. I want to post about it and will, but I wanted to hold off until my fan girl fever dies down (or until I manage to see it a second time). In short, however, the movie was nothing less than amazing. Joss Whedon nailed the superhero movie, as I presumed he would. It’s a must see.

That’s not why I’m writing today. Today’s topic is what I like to refer to as “comfort music.” I’m sure others refer to it in the same manner. Like comfort food, these are the songs or musicians that will make you feel better no matter what’s going on in your life.This is the music that, for me at least, makes me step back reassess my situation, and think somewhat more clearly. I’m sure everyone has certain albums, artists, or songs that elicit this reaction.

For me, it’s not a matter of the tempo of the music, nor is it necessarily a matter of the quality of the music. For instance, as much as the music hipster in me pains to say it, NSync’s self-titled album just does it for me. I could be in the absolute worst mode, but I can’t help but smile if “Tearin’ Up My Heart” is playing somewhere. And even the most soothing music can still leave my ears ringing if I’m in some sort of a panic.

What I’ve realized is that the music that can be most effective at this is often most closely associated with some sort of nostalgic element. Perhaps it’s the nostalgia that elicits those feelings of comfort in the first place. Thus, a band like NSync still brightens my day. In the past week, I’ve been thinking about some of the music I’d consider comfort music. This list is in no particular order and it does not represent all of the artists who have this strange effect on me, but I thought I’d share a handful to give you a small glimpse into my mind.

And Happy Cinco de Mayo!

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What I’ve Been Listening To

There was a while where I didn’t listen to much music. It was a sad and dark time. Not only was it depressing to to not only be completely oblivious about the mainstream popular music, but I also had no idea what was going on in the indie world. Lately, as I’ve been spending my days behind a desk, I’ve been trying to fix that issue. I’ve been trying to keep up with what’s going on and also have discovered and rediscovered albums that had been on my iPod. Sometimes I get really excited about Amazon mp3 deals and buy an album only to later forget I had bought it at all. It’s the epitome of a first world problem, but it also feels amazing when you’re later flipping through your iPod options and discover that this album you’ve had on your iPod for months is an absolute gem. That’s what I felt when I listened to the Zola Jesus album a couple of days ago. In any case, here’s what I’ve been listening to of late (in no particular order):

1) Hospitality – Hospitality

2) Sharon Van Etten – Tramp

3) Zola Jesus – Conatus

4) Andrew Bird – Break It Yourself

5) Air – Le Voyage dans La Lune

6) The Like – Release Me

7) Tune Yards – W h o k i l l

I’ve also been listening to a lot of Britney Spears. I used to hate her when I was in middle school and high school. Some time during college I discovered that she makes for great workout music and she’s been my jogging music the last few weeks.Also got the new Grimes album Vision yesterday and am kind of in love with it.

Revival

I’m going to try revive this blog. For real this time. I have another blog, but it tracks mostly personal and random day to day thoughts. I figure this one can do everything. The biggest thing is that a couple of months after a big trip, I really start missing regular blogging. It can be a lot of work, but it can be a lot of fun and often very rewarding. So here we go. This time it’s really going to happen.

In the past few years, I think a lot of my interests have changed. When I first started thisĀ  blog, I was really on top of new music. Now, I’m not. I’m currently struggling to listen to this year’s music to figure out what I thought (or have been told to think was the best). Now, I’m more into soccer and have really embraced the fact that I always have been and always will be an epic geek. That’s kind of why I’m going to shift the focus to be more general. Granted, music and food will often end up being a center piece in the blog, but it’s going to be more than that. Limiting what I was writing about really limited what and when I wanted to write.

Maybe I’ll even showcase some of my favorite Europe memories. We’ll see.

Best Coast and more

I’m really digging the Best Coast album. I downloaded the EP from eMusic earlier this year and while I enjoyed it, I do not like it nearly as much as I like Crazy For You. The band’s been hyped up a lot lately. Based on the album, it’s been with good cause. It’s got a dreamy air to it, but maintains a sort of 60s beach music vibe. I really like the song “Goodbye.”

Other new albums I’ve been into lately: Wavves King of the Beach (trying to decide whether I want to see them in SF next week) and Arcade Fire The Surburbs (this album is sublime). I also like The Like’s Release Me, but I think I listened to it a bit too much at the beginning of the summer because I kind of got tired of it. It suffered the fate of being my driving CD for a month or so.

I really haven’t been great at keeping up with new music this summer. I don’t know who to blame that on, but let me know if you have any suggestions.