September 11th, 2011

The End

Song Info (from Beatlesongs):”The End” is on the Abbey Road album, and was 100% written by McCartney.  “Appropriately, this was the last significant song at the end of the last album recorded by The Beatles.”

This is me admitting defeat. If it takes 10 months to finish Beatles Week, it probably isn’t going to happen.  Of course, by admitting I am not finishing Beatles Week, I am actually finishing Beatles Week… hmm…

Anyway, this is the end of Beatles Week.  I’ve had several ideas for posts over the last few months, but none of them fit Beatles Week, so I didn’t do them and now they’re gone. If I don’t call this Week finished, I may never write again. I still want to average a post a week this year before I turn 40, and I’ve only got 9 months left to do it, so I had to do something. I hope this gets me back to writing.

I think I won’t do a 2011 Beatles Week. I love the idea of it and will most likely come back to it some day, but it seems silly to start one so close to the end of this one.

Thanks for reading!

June 9th, 2011

Fixing A Hole

Song Info (from Beatlesongs):”Fixing A Hole” is on Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, and was 100% written by Paul McCartney, after repairing the roof on his Scottish farm. Said Paul, “The night we went to record that, a guy turned up at my house who announced himself as Jesus. So I took him to the session. You know, couldn’t harm, I thought. Introduced Jesus to the guys. Quite reasonable about it. But that was it. Last we ever saw of Jesus.”

The men’s staff restroom at work has a motion sensor-controlled light. The sensor must be optimally placed, because opening the door even slightly will turn the lights on. Once the lights are on, they turn off after about five minutes of no motion.

So it’s been weird for me that since summer started and the place is mostly empty any time I’ve gone to the restroom the light has already been on.  Suspicious, really. I look forward to the building emptying out during the summer, so  it made me wonder what was going on. But I think I figured out yesterday what the deal was.


I’m not just talking about normal little spiders here. You’ve seen The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King? You remember Shelob? Yeah. You  might think I’m exaggerating, but think with me here – would normal-sized spiders set off the motion sensors? I don’t think so.

What is it about spiders that creep people out so much? I’m not one for insects in general, but spiders are way worse for me. Maybe it’s the two extra legs?  I don’t know. The feeling of walking into a spiderweb isn’t helping spiders’ cases any, either. Just seeing a spider walking around causes me to tense up. If the spider happens to be doing his walking around in a place where I’m trying to live, well, I’m sorry, but that’s a spider who has decided to no longer live. If it’s doing it’s walking around outside, I do my best to let it keep wandering unhindered – this represents growth on my part, I would like to point out.

My Australian friend Carolyn loves spiders, but she lives on a gigantic island full of animals who’d sooner kill you than look at you (yes, kangaroos, I’m including you in that list), so spiders probably seem tame by comparison. For most of the rest of us, though, we’d be fine not seeing any spiders for weeks at a time. Scientists have speculated that we’re never more than three feet from a spider at any given time, but scientists are apparently jerks who hate everyone, so it’s best we just ignore them on this point.

You can’t keep spiders out of things, I think that’s the biggest problem with them. Doesn’t matter how many holes you fix, spiders will still get in. Everywhere. There’s no stopping them. Bug sprays might put them off for a while, but they’ll be back, and they’ll probably bring friends (though I’m not sure how spiders would have friends, as it seems spiders are so creepy that even other spiders wouldn’t want to hang out with them). Face it, you’re pretty much stuck with spiders. Yeah, yeah, I know they’re supposed to cut down on the fly and mosquito populations, but I haven’t noticed any absence of those, so spiders clearly aren’t doing their job, so not only are they super creepy, they’re apparently lazy, too.

Weird thing is, I’m a big fan of Spider-Man. He’s my second-favorite superhero, but I don’t know why! It certainly seems like I’d be loathe to even pick up a comic book with him on the cover, but I guess his humor and pathos outweighs the creep-out factor. Still, there’ve been a few spider-intensive panels here and there that almost did me in. Peter getting in touch with his spidery side, that kind of thing. No, thanks!

So I guess what I’m trying to say here is, spiders, if you’re reading this (with you freaky eight little beady eyes), can we just make some sort of deal where you’re not in rooms I’m in, especially when those rooms are restrooms? Please? In return, I promise to… hmm. Kill your friends more quickly and painlessly? That’s the best I can offer.

May 16th, 2011


Song Info (from Beatlesongs):”Piggies” is on the White Album, and was 85% written by George Harrison, 10% by John Lennon, and 5% by George’s mom.  This song is most famous for Charles Manson’s interpretation of it as a description of the people who would be the victims in the revolution/war he believed was imminent.  Bummer, that.

Twenty-one years ago today, the world lost a great and unique talent.  Jim Henson wasn’t just the voice of several of The Muppets, he, in many ways, was The Muppets. His love for storytelling and puppetry combined in ways no one had seen before.  He had guest appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show and created many shorts, commercials, and movies.  The success of Sesame Street led to The Muppet Show and a whole bunch of other stuff (wiki).

As anyone who has been following me long enough knows, my nickname comes from a guy in high school saying I looked like a Muppet, and The Muppet Show was one of the few TV shows our family watched together when I was a kid. I have great memories associated with the Muppets.  Every once in a while even now I’ll hear a song somewhere and say, “Hey, the Muppets did that!”  When I was a kid, of course, I thought all the songs were Muppet songs. I had no idea the variety of sources those songs actually had.  Jim Henson had gentle humor about him, but he also had a subversive side.  What other show ostensibly for kids would have had Alice Cooper as a guest star? (Note: I distinctly remember not being allowed to watch that episode when it came on. My brother and I were majorly bummed – not because we had any idea who Alice Cooper was, but because we looked forward to the Muppets every week and were sad to not get to see them that week.)

I was a few weeks shy of graduating from high school when he died.  I honestly don’t remember the specifics of how I felt then, though I know it was shocking.   Over time it seems to have affected me more and more.  I didn’t see his memorial service as it happened, but usually take the time to watch part of it every year on this day.  If you have any connections to or feelings for The Muppets and Jim Henson, this video of a song from his memorial service will affect you deeply.


There are few celebrity deaths that affect me much, but if I’d ever had the chance to meet Jim Henson, I would have thanked him for all the smiles and songs and silly creatures.