Saturday, October 22, 2011

Preface To Buses: Wouldn't You Rather Fly?

No. I miss riding in buses. I used to ride buses all the time. But when I became old enough to rent cars (I didn't own a car until later in life because Austin, where I've spent most of my entire adult life, has a great city bus system), I preferred to drive places I could drive to, whether camping in Big Bend or in Utah, or home to the family in Dallas, or wherever.

But I took buses back & forth from Austin to Dallas & Austin to Houston for several years while I was in college. I loved to sit in the front & see the picture window of the world before me. I rode a bus part of the way to Mexico City once, although the majority of the way was on a train, which I loved.

In fact, if I had my preference, it'd probably be in this order of preference: trains (including subways), automobiles, buses, planes. But if Lexington were a bigger city, with a more substantial bus system, I might bus more often. I used to bus to work every day. Every day. Walking to a bus stop. Reading at the bus stop. Waiting for the bus. When I used to smoke, smoking at the bus stop. Wondering if there was a seat on the bus for me. & whom I had to sit next to.

Do you have a good bus story? You should tell me. Maybe I'll tell some bus stories on this week's Self Help Radio!

If not yours, than mine.

Friday, October 21, 2011

I Make Excuses, Again

You haven't been wondering, but I haven't either, yet I still ask the question, "What happened to Self Help Radio Extra?" Didn't I used to do them once a month? But I haven't done any since the summer! What the fuck?

The truth is, I started doing the Self Help Radio Extra mixes a while back, when I was still in Austin, & found I was listening to a lot of music that would not necessarily be played on Self Help Radio any time soon. It was a chance to do a sort of freeform or indiepop show without actually having one on the radio.

Then, when we moved away, I began doing Sugar Substitute, & doing an extra mix became a little redundant. It was worse when I started deejay at WRFL because I also sub a lot of freeform shows. I don't like to repeat myself & play the same songs over & over. Not that anyone would notice but me. If I were going to do a Self Help Radio Extra, it would need to be, for me, something different from the radio shows I was also doing.

The last Extra I did was kind of a remake of a previous radio show, & although I think it's a fun mix, I regret it a little, since I don't really want to repeat myself. Although I have now repeated myself saying I dislike repeating myself. Good lord. & now it's October, almost November, & I don't imagine I'll make another one this year. Unless I can come up with a different idea for an "extra."

Do you miss it? I don't believe you if you said "yes."

But there's the answer: Self Help Radio Extra is being neglected. But it's not going away or anything. I'm just probably going to ignore it some more.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

A Joke A Day A Week, Episode Seventeen

I'm not sure I can go on much longer with this series. I'll just put that out there right now. I would love to report "The week of A Joke A Day this week was good!" or even "The week of A Joke A Day this week didn't make me feel at all like vomiting all over my computer screen!" But no. It was another week of neutered jokes, jokes written for the average five-year-old, & the obligatory misanthropic man/woman nonsense.

Thursday's joke involved a salesperson calling a home, getting a child, frustratingly asking for the mother (who's not home), then asking for anyone else at the house, to which the child replied, "My sister is home." The punchline, of course, is that the sister is younger than the child on the phone. Ho ho.

Fridays' joke involved a car accident with a dotty elderly woman (naturally). You can deduce the entire joke from the weak punchline: "In exasperation, the man turns from his smashed car and says, "Officer, I would have been HAPPY to give her half of the road --if she had just let me know WHICH half she wanted!!!!"

Four exclamation points. That's like someone laughing after they've told a joke to let everyone know it's time to laugh.

Saturday's joke was a slight reversal: an elderly man tricks a fellow at the grocery store into buying his groceries. That clever coot sure showed that young upstart! (That's my way of saying the joke was probably stolen from a 1930's comedy short.)

Sunday's was a hunter joke. It's sad enough that we live in a society that still has people who hunt. This one, probably the best joke of the week, turned the tables on the hunter. Here it is in full:

In the middle of a forest, there was a hunter who was suddenly confronted by a huge, mean bear.

In his fear, all attempts to shoot the bear were unsuccessful. Finally, he turned and ran as fast as he could. The hunter ran and ran and ran, until he ended up at the edge of a very steep cliff. His hopes were dim.

Seeing no way out of his predicament, and with the bear closing in rather quickly, the hunter got down on his knees, opened his arms, and exclaimed, "Dear God! Please give this bear some religion!"

The skies darkened and there was lightning in the air. Just a few feet short of the hunter, the bear came to abrupt stop, and glanced around, somewhat confused.

Suddenly, the bear looked up into the sky and said, "Thank you God, for the food I'm about to receive..."

I suppose the ellipsis is there for you to wait for the laughs that will probably never come.

Monday featured a woman who took the television remote from her husband when he refused to go shopping with her. The joke turns bleak when she returns home & he beats the hell out of her. (At least I assume. It stops before that.)

Tuesday's joke was another kid's offering, one you've heard from every child you've ever known, but which is never as funny as it was in the second grade:

Q: What do you call cheese that's not yours?
A: Nacho cheese!

Wednesday brought us another "man vs. woman" joke. It is discovered that, when pricing brains for transplant, women's are less expensive than men's because they are "used." Ha ha snort.

It's weeks like these that make me regret taking up this terrible mantle. I'd be better off examining "A Prayer A Day."

Monday, October 17, 2011

The Flow That Shows

Among the things one often thinks about that do flow - rivers, tears, blood, lava - one does not often think of Self Help Radio. The stumbling, often shabby radio show has also been known to fail at running, skipping, hopping, bouncing, sliding, rolling & let's just say for the hell of it rocking. So why did Self Help Radio advertise itself this week as "a show that flows"? Does it really want to embrace irony like some hipster douchebag?

As Winston Churchill never said, "Some men strive for irony, & some have irony thrust upon them." I am not sure what some women strive for, but I fear that if I started to talk about what gets thrust upon them, I will become embarrassed & have to leave.

The show does seems to have lots of songs about flowing, as might be expected, even if they don't flow well together. It's now resting safely at the Self Help Radio web site. Even worse, I broke up the flow by separating the show into two parts. Part one is available by clicking "part one" there. Part two is the same except you need to click "part two" at the beginning of this sentence. What is flowing (or not flowing) through those parts is listed below.

I'd ask you to just go with the flow but I'm not sure there's any flow in this show. Oh heavy sigh.

(part one)

"Flow" Incense _Fall Into The Glowing Fade_
"Feel Flows Free" Guitar _Sunkissed_

"Let Your Love Flow" Ray Charles _Wish You Were Here Tonight_
"Let It Flow" Jimmie Spheeris _Isle Of View_
"Steady In The Flow" Rosemary Haddad _Coming Hohm_
"Let It Flow" Elvin Bishop _Let It Flow_

"Let It Flow (Do You Like Scratchin'?)" KRS-One _Buffalo Gals: Back To Skool_
"I Feel Like Flowing" Apache _The Original Flava Unit_
"Let The Funk Flow" EPMD _Strictly Business_

(part two)

"Flow Forever" Rakim _The Master_

"Flow" House Of Love _Creation Soup Vol. 5_
"Everything Flows" Teenage Fanclub _Everything Flows_
"Bloodflow" Smog _KVRX Local Live Vol. 10_
"Contraflow" The Fall _The REAL New Fall LP Formerly Country On The Click_

"Melodic Flow" A.M. Sixty _Big As The Sky_
"Let It Flow" Cheeky Monkey _Four Arms To Hold You_
"Ebb & Flow" Julie Ocean _Long Gone & Nearly There_
"Wreck My Flow" The Dirtbombs _We Have You Surrounded_
"Cash Flow" Cash Pussies _99% Is Shit_
"Tears Begin To Flow" The Spiders _Chicken Shack Boogie Vol. 4_

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Whither A Show That Flows?

I honestly don't know where this show came from. I created a folder on my Mac's desktop where I threw some ideas in there & suddenly it showed up on my queue. Most of the time, a theme suggests itself to me - I can at least say that I was interested in something & made the decision to make it into a show. But "a show that flows"? What the hell?

I know "flow" is used often in a musical context, especially in hip-hop, but I'm pretty sure I wasn't thinking of doing a show of songs that demonstrated some vague notion of "flow." I also wasn't watching a river flow, or lava flow, or blood flow, or tears flow. & I hardly ever go with the flow. So I don't know from where flow flowed.

All I know is there will be a stumbling attempt to do a show about flows tomorrow on WRFL, the regular Self Help Radio time, 7:30 am, until 9:00, on the 88.1 frequency, or you can listen live online at wrfl dot fm. (This is a direct link to the WRFL .pls file if you don't want to go the website.) & of course you can listen any time after tomorrow at Self Help Radio: The Website.

It's not a terribly auspicious beginning of my tenth year. Eek!