Wednesday, July 23, 2008


The strokers at Fox News are consistent, give them that. They toe the conservative line and decry the baser parts of the world while filling your phiz with lurid images and stories about sex.

This week's big Fox News push: Why is America tolerating a song about lesbians?

We suspect they're hyping about "I Kissed A Girl" by Katy Perry, a slip of a song with an insanely catchy chorus:
I kissed a girl and I liked it
The taste of her cherry chap stick
I kissed a girl just to try it
I hope my boyfriend don't mind it
It felt so wrong
It felt so right
Don't mean I'm in love tonight
Fox insinuates the song will make straight girls rush off and join the lesbian brigade -- further proof that today's world is debauched beyond belief.

Yep. Thank God the black-and-white days were only filled with songs about straight, missionary-position sex (done in the dark, of course, 'cause with the lights out, it's less dangerous). No one sang about disgusting things like masturbation, right? Just ask Leo Sayer:
Miles and miles of empty space in between us
The telephone can't take the place of your smile.
But you know I won't be travelling for ever.
It's cold out
But hold out
And do like I do.
When I need love
I hold out my hands
And I touch love. I never knew there was so much love
Keeping me warm night and day.
So much love. No one could ever accuse Sayer of being modest. And let's not even get into Devo.

Saturday, July 19, 2008


An interesting op-ed in the Wall Street Journal highlights the difficulties facing Missouri Republicans in November. Selected grafs:
For an insight as to why the GOP is down and out in Washington, take a look at Jefferson City. That's where Sarah Steelman, the state treasurer, is running in an Aug. 5 primary for the Missouri governorship. And it's where her reform campaign against earmarks and self-dealing is threatening the entrenched status quo, causing her own party to rise against her.

So bitter are House Minority Whip Roy Blunt and Sen. Kit Bond at Ms. Steelman's attack on their cherished spending beliefs that last month they rallied the entire Missouri congressional delegation to put out a public statement openly criticizing her campaign against six-term U.S. Rep. Kenny Hulshof. Joining them in their support of Mr. Hulshof has been the vast majority of the state Republican machine. Ms. Steelman is clearly doing something right. ...

Ms. Steelman's Republican colleagues were livid with her attempt to strip them of comfy pensions, annoyed with her "sunshine law" requiring them to be more open in their dealings, furious at her attacks on their ethanol boondoggles, appalled that she criticized GOP state Speaker Rod Jetton for moonlighting as a paid political consultant. The final straw was her temerity to make her primary race about her opponent's Washington earmarking record.

For Mr. Blunt, this is also just a wee bit personal. His son, Matt, is the outgoing governor, and has been on the receiving end of a few Treasurer Steelman blasts. Last year she stopped payment on a $70,000 secret check his administration cut to settle a sexual harassment suit against an official. Her demand for transparency blew the case into the open, infuriating GOP colleagues. ...

Mr. Hulshof has been able to tout his own history as an ethics reformer, though the fervor with which his party's regulars have embraced him has undercut that message. His real weakness is that despite conservative credentials on taxes or social issues, he's run wild with the GOP crowd that just won't relinquish the pork. Which is of course why Mr. Blunt (who pioneered House earmarks) and Mr. Bond (who sits at earmark central, the Senate appropriations committee) love him.
Happy happy joy joy for Jay Nixon, Missouri's attorney general and Democratic candidate for governor. Nixon's a terrible public speaker and uninspiring gubernatorial candidate. But in this campaign cycle, all he needs is a pulse to be competitive.

Friday, July 18, 2008


We're suckers for ear candy. Few things in life are as satisfying as a delicious pop song -- jingle-jangle guitars and sharp harmonies, a driving bass beat, a drummer doing more than just keeping time.

And a hook that sinks deep and sticks around for life. A catchy chorus? Nice enough, but it's the hook that survives. Here are 35 for your brain:

Baba O'Riley
The Who
No chorus necessary -- just the words "teenage wasteland."
Copacabana (At The Copa)
Barry Manilow
At the Copa.
The Wurlitzer Prize (I Don't Want to Get Over You)
Waylon Jennings
Catchy chorus overpowered by Jennings' tear-your-heart lament: "I don't want to get over you."
The Cranberries
Dolores O'Riordan yelps her way into our brains.
Freddie's Dead
Curtis Mayfield
That's what I said.
Come As You Are
Sometimes the aural delight is a stretched-out word -- in this case, Kurt Cobain's "memory-ah."
Be My Baby
The Ronettes
Perfect Situation
Perfect, wordless singalong hook.
Five O'Clock World
The Vogues
Falsetto yelping can be good.
The Break Up Song
Greg Kihn Band
Del Shannon
I wa-wa-wa-wa-wonder.
The Fratellis
Boisterous burst of voices making noise.
Crazy In Love
She owes it all to the blast of horns first heard in The Chi-Lites' "Are You My Woman?"
Material Girl
A material ... a material ... a material ...
I Want You Back
Jackson 5
Oh baby, give me one more chance.
Take On Me
Slip of a song, but the dude can flit through the octaves.
The Adventure
Angels & Airwaves
I cannot live, I can't breathe, unless you do this with me.
Shawn Mullins
Everything's gonna be all right.
Yeah Yeah Yeahs
They don't love you like I love you.
I Miss You
Don't waste your time on me you're already a voice inside my head (or is it yed?).
Song 2
Baby One More Time
Britney Spears
Oh baby baby.
Lit Up
I love the cocaine, I love the cocaine.
Le Freak
Freak out!
Hey Ya
Shake it like a Polaroid picture.
Rock On
David Essex
James Dean.
Faith No More
You want it all but you can't have it.
The worst song, the best killer hook.
Doll Parts
Someday you will ache like I ache.
Holiday Road
Lindsey Buckingham
Buckingham's stretch on the word "road."
We Will Rock You/We Are The Champions
Stomp stomp clap. Everyone's done it.
Jessie's Girl
Rick Springfield
Why can't I find a woman like that?
Buddy Holly
What's with these homies, dissin' my girl?
R. Kelly featuring Cassidy
Checking out six in the morning.
These are our favorites. Yours?

Thursday, July 10, 2008


Sen. Barack Obama said this week that Americans need to make sure their kids know how to speak Spanish. Jingoists reared up and said Obama has it wrong -- Americans need to make sure immigrants know how to speak English.

Pollster Rasmussen has it this way:
A national telephone survey conducted last month by Rasmussen Reports found ... 83% place a higher priority on encouraging immigrants to speak English as their primary language. Just 13% take the opposite view and say it is more important for Americans to learn other languages.
It's not an either/or debate -- it shouldn't be, at least -- but it's startling to see how fury over illegal immigration has created devolution among many formerly high-functioning humans. Their offspring will curse their stubborn bones.

Pissed about immigrants not knowing English? Volunteer in an ESL class. While you're at it, learn Standard Mandarin. It's the skill of the future.

Sunday, July 06, 2008


Ozarks definition of a mullet: The driver of a slow-moving RV, usually on a winding highway around Branson, always in front of you.

As RV Business reports, a poll shows mullets love Sen. John McCain:
Fully 67% of the 346 participants cast their ballots for Republican Senator McCain. Democratic Senator Barack Obama was a distant second at 25% while Libertarian Bob Barr carried 2% and another 6% were undecided.

The overwhelming factor among McCain supporters was his level of experience.

"There are several key issues, including national security, taxes and the economy," said a member of the supplier community. "Obama is inexperienced and has no track record to be qualified to lead our country. It's somewhat unbelievable he has gotten this far."
Slow-moving drivers for a slow-moving president.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Thursday, July 03, 2008


Matt Petcoff gave birth this week to a blog: Armchair Chit Chat, a sports-oriented read with a bastard-cousin relationship to the blog you're reading. The name gives it away.

Give Brother Matt a looksee, watch as his child grows into something that attracts millions of eyeballs. Or so we hope for Mr. Petcoff.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008


The latest add to the CHATTER Wish List: Peter Greenaway's The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and Her Lover, the closest thing to an acid trip without gnawing on blotter paper. No tinny aftertaste, and Helen Mirren is sensual.

We remember seeing it during a trip to D.C. and wishing, in vain, for the film to hit Springfield. Time to track down a DVD and add it to the library.


Forty-seven years Wednesday since Ernest Hemingway went pop in search of his lost generation. Proof that all men do die equally, and that electroconvulsive therapy is probably not a good thing. There is also the truth that a double-barreled shotgun to the face is an effective way to check out, though it may leave the well-lighted room a little less than clean.

"The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them," the man once said. We aim to take that advice.


Now playing on an iPod near you:
Funk #49
James Gang

Seven Words You Can Never Say On Television
George Carlin

Love Bomb

Navajo Moon
Ana Popovic

Alanis Morissette

Radio Radio
Elvis Costello

I Let a Song Go Out Of My Heart
Thelonious Monk

Rocky Raccoon
The Beatles

21st Century Schizoid Man
King Crimson

Curtis 187
50 Cent
When my name in your mouth / Better watch how you talk ...