Thursday, September 06, 2007


If a certain new upstairs neighbor of a certain blogger placed a really, really big pile of flattened cardboard boxes on the lawn in front of the apartment building...and if said pile was, predictably enough, not picked up by recycling workers because it was not (per the city's guidelines, which are clear, and reasonably well publicized) either in a recycling bin or tied into bundles...and if weeks passed and pentateuchal rains came and made a giant mess of the pile of cardboard, which also killed a sizable patch of grass...

Would the blogger be smarter to approach the neighbor, or the landlord about the still-rotting pile of cardboard? Bear in mind that the blogger might be growing weary of the years-long symposium he has been conducting -- for an ever-renewing crew of neighbors -- in the subtleties of Madison waste removal, which is actually not that subtle.

Or is the blogger better off simply quitting the rental racket, buying a house and moving to a neighborhood where people don't leave their trash on the lawn?

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Good word

"I went through a depression after 9/11, and the start of the Iraq war and all the missed opportunities this country had...But I found when I put on Judy at Carnegie Hall, I became completely optimistic and was reminded of all the hope and glory the U.S. once represented."

-- Rufus Wainwright

Monday, September 03, 2007

Good word

"(The graffiti in cottages was all part of the fun: On the toilet wall at Paddington Station was written: 'I am 9 inches long and two inches thick. Interested?' Underneath, in different handwriting: 'Fascinated, dear, but how big is your dick?')"

-- Christopher Hitchens

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Close encounter

Last night my country band the World's Greatest Lovers played a gig up in Princeton, Wis., a private party that was a self-styled hoedown, complete with barn dance and barbecue dinner. A great time.

But driving back to Wisconsin, pedal steel player Adam Davis and I had a frightening experience. Drummer Scott Beardsley, who lived for a time in nearby Green Lake, warned us as we were leaving to watch out for deer. I took the warning seriously, because you hear just awful stories about deer and cars.

And sure enough: At about 2 this morning, Adam and I were on state highway 23 just west of Montello. He was driving. Suddenly, 100 yards or so down the highway I saw...something. A strange, unidentifiable something in the middle of the road. Then an oncoming car swerved in the distance, and I realized what I was seeing. It was a young deer, looking startled and darting back and forth in the highway. My index finger shot forward. "Look out!" I yelled. "Look out! Look out! Look out! Look out! Look out!"

Adam slammed on the brakes and somehow managed to avoid being hit by the car that was following us a little too closely. Fortunately we were moving slowly when we finally hit the deer. It was more like a tap. Looking even more startled, the deer scampered into the brush.

Terrifying. I'm glad it was only a tap. Hope the deer's okay.