Since the poetry has gone down so well...

by Mark Zaugg 28. April 2009 22:55

I often wonder which is mine: 
Tolerance, or a rubber spine? 
   - Odgen Nash

I have no idea where they get off marking this down as the worst ever.  It's got a beat and I can dance to it.

My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:

by Mark Zaugg 27. April 2009 23:52

Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair! 

This week I'm Shelley.  What ya goona do?  I must be poetic. 

Starting off last Monday, I started off with The Who's "The Seeker."  Pete Townshend is one of the masterful songwriters.  I dug up a recent version, too.  For some reason, in my memory Daltrey had a Hawaiian shirt or had some kind of surfer look going on when they played Calgary.  Good rocking. 

Last Tuesday was Proposition 61 by the Most Serene Republic.  I love these guys, I'd really like to catch them live.  They're another unique band with a distinct sound all to themselves.

Wednesday was Earth Day, wasn't it?  How about something appropriate:  The Planet from Hans Theessink.  No audio of this one, but let me paint a picture in your mind.  Hans is a Dutch blues player who plays delta blues.  He's an absolutely amazing guitarist and a must see when he comes through.  In the album I've got, he has Jon Sass playing tuba - including one of the apocryphal tuba solos!  Fantastic musicians all.

Up on Thursday I go back to The Soundtrack of Our Lives with  Nevermore.  They were on here before with "In Your Veins", this is much more indicitive of why I like TSOOL.

And how about I finish off with today's music, which is that great epic, "Clam Caravan" by Spinal Trap.  Can't beat those guys, but we know just how anal they are about posting anything up on youtube.  Great band, but David, Nigel and Derek are such humourless prigs.  Well, if I can't find what I want to play, you get dosed with a blast of bass.  Enjoy!

I am T.S. Eliot

by Mark Zaugg 21. April 2009 20:05

This is the way the blog ends.
This is the way the blog ends.
This is the way the blog ends.
Not with a bang but a whimper.

Or perhaps not.  But it will come in dribs and drabs.

Let's start with last Monday and the Arrogant Worms and a wonderful departure for them with a song more about philosophy than humour.  Didn't you know they could be so deep?  Well, really, they Kant.

Next up is that band I saw before Melvin and I got to see Buddy Guy.  No youtube there, but it's Warehouse covering this song. They still need more internet presence. (duck)

Last Wednesday was a little band out of England called The Thamesmen.  They released this ditty back in 1964 (pretty impressive since I don't tend to have a lot of mouldy goldies on my iPod).  I'm not really sure what really happened to the Thamesmen, to be honest.  They seemed to blow up to statospheric proportions and then fell to earth and combusted like a drummer.  Rumours have it that they re-formed again five or six years ago as a band called "The Folksmen", but despite the similarities of name, I really disbelieve the rumour is true.  Nonetheless, this is a song that I used to sing to my daughter when she was a wee one and she bumped a shin or fell over skating or something similar and it would make her laugh and laugh a thousand times over.

Last Thursday had Tim Vesely's band the Violet Archers.  Love these guys, it's wonderful to hear Tim making such cool music.  You only get a taste in this one, but it's worth something.

More to come later.

One smile in under three minutes...

by Mark Zaugg 9. April 2009 01:17

I guarantee it.  Three minutes from the moment you click the link. 

You're not going to make it through the song without cracking a smile. 

The last I heard, Andrea Wasse was down in LA doing her thing, making it big, breaking my heart and leaving me behind. 


Are you really gonna?

by Mark Zaugg 8. April 2009 01:40

There's a goodly pile of stories I can tell about Bill Henderson. 

I've met him many times now, I've worked with him on occasion, and he continues to impress me as a really nice guy to be around. 

The very first rock and / or roll I'd ever heard was when my Dad came home with Chilliwack cassette - Wanna Be a Star.  I played that poor thing to death, I'm sure.  It was clearly one of the most influential albums ever in my life, I'm sure it holds a great deal of explanation behind the brain damage before you. 

Well, the first time I'd met Bill I was tongue tied trying to explain just how big of an effect his music had had upon me.  He kinda laughed and asked, "What's all this in the past?" 

It wasn't in the past, it was just a re-connection with something that remains very important to me.  Much of my musical taste was formed by Bill Henderson - both in and apart from Chilliwack - and remains so to this very day.

This morning's song was "Are You Really Gonna Walk Out?" and is actually from "Look In, Look Out".  Naturally, no youtube on it. 

You know, if I'm going to just randomly post something else Chilliwackian, I'm going to throw up one that I really, really love.  I could use a little more belief right about now anyways, and I love the live videos.  This is from Wanna Be A Star.

Catchin' up, Monday evening.

by Mark Zaugg 6. April 2009 21:03

Although it's another one of those "two of three I can't dig up on youtube", I'll put in a near miss, a vague explanation, and an actual performance. 

Bob Brozman
is known as an ethnomusicologist.  Simply stated, not only does he study the cultural aspects of music, he's a fantastic musician who brings the music to life and can explain in great detail depths and facets of the music you've never considered - almost without care or consideration of how much you previously knew.  He plays a wide range of styles, I'm particularly taken with his slide guitar and his Hawaiian guitar work myself. 

The actual song was "New Vine Street Blues", but instead I'll give you Highway 49 Blues. 

The second song is one of the albums I consider absolutely essential for Canadian fans of the Arts.  The Rheostatics were commissioned by the National Gallery of Canada to write an album inspired by the works of the Group of Seven.  It was released to much acclaim, both as a tribute to the Group of Seven and as a solid and separate work unto itself.  The tracks did not have official names, so the actual track was numbered "One", although the unofficial title of the song is "Kevin's Waltz."  Go watch Laurie Brown's story on it from the CBC.  You'll get a great feel for it from her story. 

Last was Robert Plant and Allison Kraus playing Townes Van Zandt's song Nothin'. 

A little music in the morning.

by Mark Zaugg 1. April 2009 00:59

I didn't write down what the song was last Thursday, and I charged my iPod last night, wiping out the list of songs.  I figured I'd have to write it off as an "oops."  Then riding the bus home tonight, I heard another Sloan song and it clicked. 

Back when I was bopping along to the saccharine cuddle pop of Cub, the other band worth it's hype was Sloan.  They were hugely popular on RealTime, and have obviously had wonderful staying power.  Come to think of it, they remain on of my favourite bands I've never seen live.  Pity. 

Here is 500 Up. 

Monday goes back to the great Fred Eaglesmith featuring Willie P. Bennett playing, "49 Tons."  Come to think of it, isn't that a Willie P. Bennett original right there? 

This morning goes back to the New Pornographers.  Since the Ennis Sisters were the first band to repeat, I ought to mention Challengers is the first album to repeat.  Do I stop when I have a song repeat?  No worries yet, this morning was "The Spirit of Giving."

An email regarding Conficker

by Mark Zaugg 31. March 2009 21:14

Hey Claude, I've got good news, good news, and more good news for you. 

1.  The way that conficker works is by attacking a bug that was known in Windows but was not patched by the computer's owner.  Fortunately, I've spoken with the bozo that patched your computer and he assures me that he did, in fact, patch your system with all patches that were available on the day that he worked on it.  Sometimes when you install programs on your computer it uses new components that weren't used before.  Those components might have patches too.  When I updated your computer, I made sure that I rebooted and checked Microsoft Update as one of the very last things that I did.  The end result of this is that I know your computer was fully patched when you got it.  The bug that conficker uses was fixed with the patching I performed on your system.  Yay!  You're probably covered.  (I *never* speak in absolutes.) 

2.  A whole pile of smart people figured out a way to find it.  I won't bore you with the details, but most of the antivirus programs out there are busy jamming it into their products to protect you.  I've been told AVG 8.5 does include conficker protection, so once more, you should be safe. 

One small warning:  One of the things this sucker does is turn off some of the things that keep you safe such as:  Windows Update, Windows Security Center, Windows Defender and Windows Reporting.  It also may block some antivirus software websites!  Hence it could be blocking your antivirus.  In the unlikely event that you have been infected, and you notice odd behaviour from your computer, use one of the removal tools listed here

3.  Last of the good news is that it's April Fools Day in Australia right now and so far it's looking okay.  That's not to say that 12 hours from now the servers are going to wake up and cause havok.  But as of this moment right now, we're going fine.

  - Mark


Most important is to not panic.  Second most important is to use some common sense. 

Patch your system by using Windows Update or Microsoft Update.  That would have stopped this in it's tracks.

Unfortunately, many people object to Windows Update because of the check they employ to test for pirated copies of Windows.  Please go patch your systems!  Microsoft gives access to critical updates to avoid this exact scenario.  If your copy of Windows is pirated, then get a proper licence, install a distribution of Linux (I prefer Ubuntu) or get off the internet.  If you're one of my clients, call me immediately because something requires immediate attention.

In my opinion, Microsoft has done a truly horrible thing by linking WGA to Microsoft Update.  It gives the impression that you're under the magnifying glass for piracy instead of focusing on it's job to keep you safe.  I would like to see it offer critical updates first and then push out the WGA.  But I'm not majority shareholder in Microsoft yet.

Second on the list of common sense is to have an antivirus program installed.  There is a lot of hype about Conficker right now, use an anti-virus program I trust.  I personally recommend the free versions of AVG, Avast and Avira for home users and there is always the Open Source ClamWin - based on the technically excellent ClamAV.  There are several other reputable anti-virus companies available, although I do not believe there is any reason for home users to pay for anti-virus solutions any more.

Third, go get a home router and don't connect to the internet unless you're behind a firewall.  Bonus, you can easily hook several computers to your broadband connection.

Safe computing out there.

Hi, my name is Mark and I'm an insufferable Fredhead.

by Mark Zaugg 25. March 2009 23:47

Let's start with Monday: 

What can I say about Fred?  Let me just start with, "I love ya, man.  Pass a beer." 

With the bonus of Willie P. Bennett on camera, genius, star, personal hero and a genuine gem of a man.  My son got to shake Willie's hand a few years back.  I told Willie that Kelley was a fan literally every day of his life.  Willie, gentlemanly as he was, enthusiastically shook Kelley's hand and said, "It's nice to meet you, Kelley.  I've never met someone who's been a fan all his life before." 

Tuesday goes back to the Rheostatics and "Mumbletypeg" from Night of the Shooting Stars.  I was a late comer to that album, and it's sure grown on me. 

No youtube video, but in a completely unrelated by anything but the name of the song, let me introduce Frank Fotusky.  I found it through a search for mumbletypeg and he's awesome in  an entirely non-Rheostatic way.  Or perhaps the Rheostatics are awesome in an entirely non-Fotusky way.  I'm listening to his "Trouble in Mind" as I type this -- I love this accidental finds.

And today goes to Ruthie Foster with "Woke Up this Morning."  I'm not sure if I actually woke up this morning or not, but it's hard to not get moving with this driving you on.  Love you too, Ms. Foster.

After those three, I'm looking forward to what tomorrow will bring.

Criminally responsible.

by Mark Zaugg 25. March 2009 02:13

Book 'em, Dano

This would have never come to light had there not been video taken of Dziekanski's deathThe very facts are that the police officers have lied, although I'm not prepared to make declaration on the severity of the lies.  I will not dignify the lies by calling it "mis-remembering."  Flat out, Dziekanski was killed and the attending officers lied that he was swinging a stapler wildly, that he had some kind of superhumanly resisted the first shock from the taser, and that they attended Dziekanski by monitoring his health after he had been taken down. 

My first aid certification has lapsed, but I know a damn sight more than how those four officers acted regarding monitoring vital signs and administering first aid.  What they did is, at best, negligent and at worst criminal in my eyes.  Think for a minute - these are the people who are sworn to serve and protect YOU and are expected to treat each and every person they encounter in a fair and reasonable manner.  Saying that you may be next is not an exaggeration in the slightest. 

There are good cops and bad cops out there.  There is no room for anything less than good cops and great cops.  Anything less than the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth is unacceptible.  Not charging these officers is not acceptible. 

I both understand and acknowledge that this may have taken an emotional toll on the officers.  Emotional tolls do not negate charges of impropriety.  Feeling bad does not restore a life.  You and I do not get a get out of jail card for an alleged crime because we feel bad.  It may mitigate sentencing, but it does not eliminate the consequence. 

Charge them.  Charge them now.  They have acted unacceptibly and deserve to stand charges in court.  If charges do not stick in a fair and open trial, I'll happily rescind my opinion and defend them.  Until then, make them - all four of them - stand on charges.  They have some serious answers to provide and have yet to demonstrate full and unvarnished honesty. 

I know I'm just one more schmuck with a blog and a meaningless opinion, but until we all can press with our opinions, none of this shit is going to change.  I'll return to my usual drivel tomorrow. 


Change is the only constant.

Welcome to the semi-exciting new look, same crappy blogger.

All comments are still moderated, I'll approve everything that isn't spam or offensive.  Agreement with His Dorkasaurus is not necessary.

What has changed is that I don't have 1000 junk accounts clogging up the system that I have to go through one by one.  Yes, you too can set up an account and no longer need to wait for me to notice you posted.  Completely optional.

As always:  Have fun, be respectful.


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