Friday, July 21, 2023

Self Help Radio 072023: 1987 (Continued)

(images from Discogs)

Here ya go. Two more hours of my favorite music from 1987. (This is continued from a show earlier this year.) It can't be stressed any more how important a year this was for me. & if I were doing radio then - which I wasn't - it would've sounded very much like this.

Listen to the show at the Self Help Radio website. Use the username SHR & the password selfhelp to do so. There are no interviews or anything this week, it's all music & a couple of memories. The song list is below.

Oh, to be 19 again. I bet I'd stick fuck everything up!

Self Help Radio 1987 (Continued) Show
"Gary's Song" American Music Club _Engine_
"Return To Yesterday" The Lilac Time _The Lilac Time_
"Julie Profumo" The Cleaners From Venus _Going To England_

"Last Night I Dreamt Somebody Loved Me" The Smiths _Strangeways, Here We Come_
"In Spite Of These Times" Close Lobsters _Foxheads Stalk This Land_
"A Million Miles" The Wedding Present _George Best_
"Fish" Throwing Muses _Lonely Is An Eyesore_
"Wrong Wrong Wrong" Fastbacks _...And His Orchestra_

"Ahead" Wire _The Ideal Copy_
"Lips Like Sugar" Echo & The Bunnymen _Echo & The Bunnymen_
"Heartbreak Beat" The Psychedelic Furs _Midnight To Midnight_
"Jennifer She Said" Lloyd Cole & The Commotions _Mainstream_
"Luminous Times (Hold On To Love)" U2 _With Or Without You_

"What Went Wrong This Time?" The Siddeleys _What Went Wrong This Time?_
"Ask Johnny Dee" The Chesterfields _Kettle_
"If I Said" The Darling Buds _If I Said_
"Sally Cinnamon" The Stone Roses _Sally Cinnamon_
"Sign On The Line..." Fizzbombs _Sign On The Line..._

"Beats + Pieces (Mo' Bass Remix)" Coldcut _Beats + Pieces_
"Christianity Is Stupid" Negativland _Escape From Noise_
"Masterhit (Part I & II)" Front 242 _Official Version_
"Neo Geo" Ryuichi Sakamoto _Neo Geo_

"The Model" Big Black _Songs About Fucking_
"Mandinka" Sinéad O'Connor _The Lion & The Cobra_
"Bury Your Love Like Treasure" The Blue Aeroplanes _Spitting Out Miracles_

Thursday, July 20, 2023

Whither 1987 (Continued)?

Hey look. It's a picture of me. Up a tree. Probably in January 1987. I grew my first real beard that winter. & shaved it off sometime before spring. Also I am wearing a Sid & Nancy tee shirt. I saw that movie at the Varsity theater in Austin in the fall of 1986. I have no idea where it went. The tee shirt I mean. The Varsity closed in 1987 I believe. It later became a Tower Records. I'm not sure what it is now.

This week's show forgoes all the interviews & other silliness to continue playing music I love from 1987. It's a very important year for me. Sure, I was in college & learning & all that nonsense, but also I was spending what little money I had on music.

The first 1987 show aired in January on KBOO, which is where Self Help Radio was at the time. You can listen to it here. At least look at the playlist so you won't think today that I missed something. This is a continuation. While I was listening to songs this week I started getting panicky about that. Don't make me panicky about that!

The show is on today, Thursday, noon to 2pm on Freeform Portland which in town is at 90.3+98.3fm & is online everywhere at freeform portland dot org. Again, mainly music with a smattering of memories. A good time is guaranteed for some.

Wednesday, July 19, 2023

Preface To 1987 (Part Two): Another 1987 Anecdote

This might be a story I've told before. I warn you, it has some hateful language in it. I apologize but it's kinda the punchline. So. It's necessary I think.

This happened to me in 1987. I was 19 years old. I came back to Garland on Spring Break, which would have been mid-March. I was in my second semester of college at the University Of Texas At Austin. Most of my family lived in Garland, Texas.

Having nothing to do one day I wandered over to where my sister Pat & my brother-in-law Dan lived. That's the very house up there, as it looked a few years before Pat died. They mostly thought me unusual but my sister in particular felt family should look out for family. My brother-in-law did not like me, thought me arrogant & thought my dislike for manly endeavors like working on cars made me soft. He was always trying to get me to do things like chop wood, things I wasn't very good at, which then left me open for humiliation & mockery. To his credit, my brother-in-law didn't seem to enjoy making fun of me as much as my brothers did. My little brother lived with Pat & Dan at the time.

We hadn't had a good relationship for most of our teens, my little brother & me. Around the time I began to be obsessed with music & comics, he took a different route & found people to play basketball with. He felt like he was in a competition with me & I didn't really feel that way at all.

Anyway, as I stepped into Pat & Dan's house that March day in 1987, there was some commotion. I was told to go up to the crawlspace at the top of the house - it wasn't an attic, I mean, you can see in the picture above. I was instructed by my brother-in-law to hold a pipe. There had been a freeze which had damaged a pipe & someone needed to prevent the pipe from leaking while repairs were being made. I had the proper skill set for such a task & Dan knew it.

How long I lay up there I don't know. I am afraid of bugs so I worried a spider or something might crawl on me. Occasionally Dan would say "You okay up there?" so I knew I wasn't being forgotten. I let my mind drift, played some songs in my head, & began to notice the temperature rising.

At some point, my little brother poked his head into the crawlspace. "Hey," he said.

"Hey," I said.

Without any real preface, he blurted out, "I bet I've fucked more girls than you have."

I started laughing. He said, "What? What?" - thinking I was somehow putting him down.

"If you have fucked one girl," I told him, "you've fucked more girls than I have."

His face, from what I could see looking down the narrow crawlspace, had a confused look. I wasn't playing the game correctly, you see. I was supposed to say "Nuh-uh!" & counter with some bullshit or other. But I hadn't played that game with him or anyone in a long time.

He didn't quite know how to respond. So he just said, "Faggot," & disappeared.

Tuesday, July 18, 2023


Sometimes I take pictures in lieu of journal entries. I don't save all the photos I take but I save some. Like the one above. What is it a photo of?

Unfortunately, I have no context. It was taken on this day in 2014 in Lexington, Kentucky. I was almost certainly attracted by the worn-out sign, by the failure of the bottom part to indicate where the airport was.

Where was I? Possibly on the road, maybe New Circle Road. The other pictures I've saved from that day do not give me any clues. & how is that helpful as a journal? It's not.

Look at this:

This is a picture taken in my front yard. It indicates to me I didn't really go anywhere that rainy day.

So where did I take the picture? Probably in my neighborhood. Is it a mystery? It is not. Not at all.

Monday, July 17, 2023

Yes Buffet

Here is a photo I took in Grand Prairie, Texas, in March. I titled it "My philosophy - the sign."

It's this place. I didn't think I would enjoy the place & we didn't eat there - just stopped long enough to take the picture. I still haven't really gone into a sit-down restaurant to eat - I mean technically I did during that visit - but in one case, we sat in the patio area & I put my mask on as soon as I was done eating, & in the second case, we were the only people in the place.

There were two great buffet places in Austin I kinda miss. One was an Indian restaurant which we used to cater our wedding. The other I think was called Shanghai Palace & they helpfully kept the vegetarian food on a separate - what would you call it, cart? table? buffet row?

Shanghai Palace is long gone, but the other place, Star Of India, is still there, on Anderson Lane, near one of the Alamo Drafthouse satellites. Before I became vegan, my favorite thing there - besides the saag paneer - was these - were these - that sounds better - were these Indian tater tot things filled with cheese. Never seen them anywhere else.

Nothing I've read about Yes Buffet suggests they have such innovations - or that they segregate (or even offer) vegetarian/vegan food.

But what a sign!