Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Start the Week

Dear Friends, I want to post but at the same time am not really feeling up to it. Compulsion fights exhaustion. Desire for expression wrestles with sniffings of dejection. So let's see what wins out...

The weekend, I must say, was a good one. Nay, it was a happy one. Even the mundane was enjoyable; on Saturday, Little Man and Daddy set off in search of bagels and somehow, inexplicably, ended up at Granville Island. Eating pizza. By the water. Listening to a pleasantly noodling jazz band. And I don't, as a rule, care much for noodling jazz bands.

A sunny Sunday saw an afternoon visit to the beach, which turned out to be a concentrated burst of Vancouver essence. Sailboats scudding across English Bay against a backdrop of mountains, some still capped with snow. A seaplane making its ungainly way across the sky like a fat duck. A family grilling sausages behind us, chatting in Russian about computer game development. Strident crows chasing a bald eagle away from delectable shoreline pickings. A Chinese teenager in bikini top and micro-skirt teetering across the sand on high-heeled cowboy boots. Occasional bursts of dub rythm blowing down the beach from far away. Teen boys in baggy shorts sluicing across the moist sand flats on wakeboards to impress teen girls. Darling Daughter and Daddy laughing at their own sandy funhouse shadows.

A good, happy weekend.

Unfortunately, the edges started to come unstuck on Sunday evening. Darling Daughter was struck rather suddenly and most unpleasantly by the local stomach bug that's doing the rounds. Cue hours of cleanup and comforting. Monday dawns, and I'm feeling squiffy myself. Cue fervent hopes that it's the mildish cold that Dearest Wife is just shaking off, rather than gastro-germ. Later in the morning, news that the in-laws are returning to town today. They had
intended to spend a week on Mayne Island, but Beloved Mother-in-Law is simply too frail and so after two days they came back to Vancouver. That hits me hard, another reminder that her end is near. Musings on the nature of impermanence don't help - I'm too attached. Then, a call from my own Aged Mother, seeking solace from the solitude of her recent bereavement.

Dearest Friends, I'm feeling drained, so drained, nothing left to give. And it's only Monday...

Depeche Mode - Shake The Disease (buy here)

I did actually drag myself out to Zulu at lunchtime on the pretext of picking up another Camera Obscura ticket (Yay! Dearest Wife is converted and will accompany me to the their show on 24 July), but of course I ended up buying discs. Only two, though. Included in that duo was the latest album from Montreal's Pony Up!, the coyly titled 'Make Love To The Judges With Your Eyes.' I had been quite taken by last year's twinkly, downbeat poplet of a track 'Shut Up And Kiss Me' and what I heard from the listening post this afternoon seemed to reflect the betwixt and between I found myself in. Bright, bubblegummy vocals declaiming not-so-bright, bittersweetish lyrics over ambivalent pop tunes with a wash of grey, if not black. On top of that, in my current frame of mind I could not resist a track entitled 'The Truth About Cats And Dogs (Is That They Die).'

Pony Up! - The Truth About Cats And Dogs (Is That They Die)
Pony Up! - What's Free Is Yours

(Buy here, direct from the label)

I hope you will enjoy.

(UPDATE 28 June, 11:00 AM: Hooray! EZarchive has awakened from its 12-hour coma. You should now be able to sample my delectable wares as normal. Yum, slurp...)


Bishakh said...

That's a bit of a coincidence. Only yesterday I bought a Depeche Mode CD for J. - it has all their singles from 81-85 - and the one song that kept resonating between my ears was, of course, 'Shake the Disease'.

I'm digging these Pony Up! children - brings me back to the heyday of Sarah Records and my brief infatuation with all things small, shy and precious - a landscape of Orchids dotted with Field Mice.

Camera Obscura are playing here in NYC on the 7th - am considering braving the hordes of bespectacled indie kids to see them.

T&F@tlh said...

hope the tummy bug is dead and gone!

much love from tlh


Mentok the Mind-taker said...

I started to read your post, but after the mention of girls in bikinis I seemed unable to focus on anything else. ;-)

Seriously, lucky you, handy to Granville Island and all. Quite amazing how you could just inexplicably materialize there while out doing other errands.

You shouldn't have posted while sick. See, now you've given ezarchive your virus ;-)

Hope you're better today. I look forward to the return of the tunes.

unknown said...

it's alive! EZ has returned... so, downloading the posted music now fil... my heart beat faster when i read bishakh's comment that pony up! = sarah records/field mice/orchids... as you know this is absolutely my first musical love... can't believe it's only at 62%... hurry! hurry! this is music i need to hear...

more importantly, however, hope you are feeling better, less drained... chin up lad.

Rachel said...

You are so awesome.

First off, Pony Up! is positively fantastic and I am digging their name.

And on a more personal note...Your lovely outings with your children brought about fond memories...Thank you.

I do hope your daughter is feeling better, and your wife has finally killed the sniffle germs.
And of course I hope your spirit has gotten a chance to breath and recover from all the things life has thrown your way at one time.

Thinking of you and the loved ones.

unknown said...

What a find.... just beautiful music... yet *another* purchase to make...


or is that


It's :)

I just got paid.


FiL said...

Mon cher Bishakh: Oh, do brave the indie kids! They're mostly harmless, and the annoying ones can be scared off by the slightest mention of Blitz or The Exploited. And as for the small, shy, and precious, *sigh* see today's post. I did warn you...

Dearest T, yes, bugs nearly all fumigated!

Dear Mentok, will henceforth wear a surgical mask whenever dealing with ezarchive... Yes, Granville Island is great. I actually work about a 5 min walk away from there, so I frequently take lunch there.

Dearest Lovelybelle, Pony Up! are indeed fine in both name and music, are they not? Thanks for the uplifting wishes & kind thoughts - we've indeed carved out some hopefully restful time away this weekend.

And Dearest Colin, I thought Bishakh's words would set you to salivating. I'm glad the tunes lived up to the hype, and that you got paid! Don't forget to set aside some dosh for minor stuff like food, children's clothes, etc...


A. B. Chairiet said...

[whispering] Hi FiL. I've missed you, you know. :)

...Strangers or not. Are we strangers?? Friends who don't know each other all that well, and have never met, but still, strangers who are friends are friends.

Is that one of those tautologies you spoke of?

I had absolutely no idea what a tautology was!

And I'm supposed to be a writer, aren't I??


I hope you're doing well!

I hope you and your family are healthy and cured.

Made me happy to read of your happy weekend, of a happy family on a happy beach.


"Dearest Friends, I'm feeling drained, so drained, nothing left to give. And it's only Monday..."

It was all Mondays.

Tis a quote I like. And I'm so sorry you feel, or felt, drained. I'm so sorry you felt you had nothing left to give.

I feel that way all the time, and then feel bad for not giving enough. For staying offline for days at a time. Though I always end up thinking, Who cares if Ashley Chairiet gives anything? It's a bunch of ugly Mondays, and I reckon I'll soon just fade away entirely.

But not you, FiL. You're such a great writer, and such a nice person. Truly, already, such a great friend.


I hope you'll find or found whatever it is you felt or feel drained of.

I hope you find everything to give.

~ Ash

A. B. Chairiet said...

P.S. Hi again, FiL!

One day later, and I’m in a much better mood...

I LOVE, absolutely, positively, Sufjan-love this Pony Up! band!!

[Sufjan-love: when you love a band or singer so much you'd marry them in a heartbeat] ;)

Just wanted to let you know that: that I love it. Sufjan-love it.

Though I also wanted to come back and steal the other song: What's Free is Yours.

I took The Truth about Cats and Dogs yesterday, and have had it on repeat all morning. :)

Loved the beginning best.

"I got dirt on my shoe. Tell me what I'm going to do. Parade me around," reminds me of being a little girl, my mom forcing me to be in beauty pageants, yelling at me should I scuff up my patent leather shoes.

And "You don't have to be there, I won't fall"??

I love that line most of all. :)


Thank you so much for the great music; for introducing me, yet again, to another great band. :)


Happy Sunday!
~ Ash

FiL said...

Dearest Ash I have been very remiss in responding. I plead mitigating circumstances...

It is always so lovely to hear from you. And yes, we do care if Ashley Chairiet gives. We care very much (don't we, folks??).

I too have concluded that strangers who are friends are indeed friends. It is a peculiar form of community, but one I've grown so terribly fond of. Any you are most definitely included!

You know, I would love to have a big, huge, three-day party where all the nearest and dearest I have met, be it virtually or in the flesh, could physically get together. I think that would be just grand!!

Finally, so glad you like the music - 'TTACAD" is wonderful. And I can just picture the beauty pageant scene!

Must run - work beckons...