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Music Savaged By The Average Beast

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for July 21, 2004

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My 18-Hour Girdle Is Killing Me!
by Your Diva, Robin Pastorio-Newman

The other day, Paulie Gonzalez looked up from computerized gift shopping:
"Did you know on Rod Stewart's last tour, tickets cost 750?"
"What, pesos?"
"No, American dollars. Ticket sales were crappy, so they're down to $175 apiece."
"I'd pay five bucks to spray him with Chlorox. You know, for the disco period."
"Yeah, my Dad and Stepmom are big fans. So, for their anniversary I bought them two tickets and a can of mace."
We must be less skittish than usual, because usually, we'd plug our ears and yammer, "I'm not listening! I'm not listening! La la la la la la!" But this summer, we hear the humor in the pop culture polka. Oprah's Summer Book is Anna Karenina? Okay…housewives now read Tolstoy! The bloody handiwork of Sid Vicious adorns museum walls? Alrighty…punk rock's lowest comedy magically transforms into high art! Disgruntled police picket outside the Republican National Convention while al-Quaida loads up the Welcome Wagon? Look! …another fine reason to live in Jersey! We're mighty well adjusted for a people engaged in an unnerving international conflict and discovering that for the first time in ages, a bunch of interesting-looking movies have hit theaters. The words, "Dirty Dancing is back, and it's better than the original" might turn our stomachs if we weren't spitting our orange sodas.
A&E's Family Plots is a disarming, quirky look at the routines and relationships of the characters making up a family-run California mortuary business. Yes, these real people bury real dead people. Yes, these professionals jab at a full size punching bag in the garage and argue constantly. They lose legal documents, bet each other they can't quit smoking and set Dad up on blind dates. Family Plots is so very human, and sometimes very amusing. The intro includes a warning that when you find the grim funny, it'd be strange not to laugh.
By way of constrast, when HBO's Six Feet Under's most recent episode took a turn toward the deeply horrifying we made our own mirth. After it ended, Paulie picked up the remote and asked, "Are you okay?" Your Darling, Your Diva, Your One True Love was hyperventilating. And trying hard to calm down. Still breathing heavily, Your Beloved asked, "Need fluffy. Shiny. The Dead Zone?"

©2004 Robin Pastorio-Newman

All material ©2001-2014 Sean Carolan, except as noted.


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ALTROK recommends music once a week; here's our most recent choices. Most links will take you to a place where you can buy the music; if there's no link, and you own a record company, consider releasing it yourself...

A Place To Bury Strangers - It Is Nothing
The Boxer Rebellion - Semi-Automatic
The Cribs - Cheat On Me
Datarock - True Stories
Everything Everything - Photoshop Handsome
HEALTH - Die Slow
Miles Hunt and Erica Nockalls - Catching More Than We Miss
Julian Plenti - Games For Days
Los Campesinos - The Sea Is A Good Place To Think Of The Future (Free download!)
Miike Snow - Black & Blue

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