Tom Waits New Year's Eve

Tom Waits Bad As Me

Who else but Tom Waits would have Keith Richards as a guest vocalist? I love Tom Waits' early albums, the jazzy bluesy folksy tin pan alley stuff. In the post 1982 era my favourite has to be Bone Machine. In honour of the day that is New Year's Eve, here is Tom Waits' New Year's Eve, from his terrific 2011 release Bad As Me.


New Year's Eve

Tanya at Tanya Says wrote a nostalgic piece on the New Year's celebration. I am not so sentimental. My most common memory of New Year's past, since about the age of twelve years old, consists of being sick in bed every other year. For some reason, for year upon year, the flu, a stomach virus, a sinus infection or something else would knock me on my ass a couple days before the festivities. I do not get sick often - December being the exception.
Happy New Year!

Three years ago I started getting the flu shot. So far so good. This year I came down with a cold at the early part of the month. And I can now see the finish line. I have to avoid sick people for a few more days and I will have made it to New Year's, unscathed.

New Year's is a reason or an excuse to celebrate. I don't have any emotional ties to the night. It used to be a requirement to go out and party as hard as possible. All I really need is two things. Friends and an alcoholic beverage or two.

New Year's is a time for celebration, a dawning of a new year, a cause to gather with friends and family, out with the old and in with the new. A time to air out old grievances, forget and move forward, a time to wash away the ills and wish for only the good. And what a better way to wash it away than with alcohol?

People keep asking me what am I doing for New Years. The correct question is where are you going for New Years. What am I doing is a forgone conclusion. I am drinking. Where am I drinking on New years? Not sure yet. I know what I will be drinking with friends. Where? Doesn't matter.

One time, about 10 or so years back, the clock struck midnight, everyone hugged and kissed. I called my parents to wish them a Happy New Year. Their response was, "Why are you calling?"

So maybe there is a reason I am not so sentimental for New Year's past.
Bonne Annee!


Best Of... Holiday Classics

Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah. For Christmas day filler, what better way to complete the day then with a Christmas themed post? Here are some stories I wrote specifically with this time of year in mind.
Click the titles on the post you want to view.

Let us start off with suggestions I came up with to while the day away in...Things to do On Christmas Day When You Don't Celebrate Christmas

If you are celebrating today, a believer or non believer, Santa may be resting this very morning, but he still has some toys left over in his sack. It's not too late to write to Santa. So send Santa a letter with your gift wish for this year, or get a head start on next year by filling out the comment section. I guarantee speedy delivery for all letters...

What's the holiday season without music? There is something about Christmas music that provides a poignant soundtrack to the celebrations and festivities.
Here is a new Christmas song called...Santa Stole My Lady

And if you are into the classics, and don't mind a friendly spoof, here is  Will Ferrel and John C. Reilly doing their version of the David Bowie, Bing Crosby classic Peace on Earth / Little Drummer Boy... 

Are you planning on going shopping on Boxing Day? Need some tips for dealing with the lines, the angry shoppers, the helpful and not so helpful clerks?
Than watch this video on one of the best shopping pranks ever...

Or if you just want a chuckle, here are some of the ...
just a few of the tweets and Facebook status updates that I fell on during the year. I will he putting out a new one in the next few days. Part 1, Part 2.


Is this a Holiday Tradition?

Not one, not two, not three, but four people found by searching for "how to make your penis look like a candy cane".

Anyone want to contribute a story on "how to make your penis look like a candy cane"? Through proper search engine optimization I really think I can corner the penis-candy cane market.



Date Night

I met this really hot girl. We went out for coffee. She is awesome.

Why am I telling you this? I'm bragging. I went out with a hot girl.

Also, I am anticipating that she will eventually read this and therefore, bonus points.

Not the actual lady I went out with


John Carter

John Carter is an action-adventure film set on the mysterious and exotic planet Mars. Based on the classic novel by Edgar Rice Burroughs, the film tells the story of the war-weary Civil War captain John Carter (Taylor Kitsch), who is mysteriously transported to Mars where he becomes embroiled in an epic conflict amongst the inhabitants of the planet, including Tars Tarkas (Willem Dafoe) and the Princess Dejah Thoris (Lynn Collins). In a world on the brink of collapse, Carter rediscovers his humanity when he realizes that the survival of Mars and its people rests in his hands. Look for it in a theatre near you in March 2012. And the trailer is freaking awesome.

John Carter Movie Poster


Rush to Hall of Fame

How can Rush not be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?! The new class of inductees has been announced and a few of the names caught me off guard. Red Hot Chili Peppers? Guns N' Roses? Where is Rush? It was the Heebonics website that first brought this story to my attention. For the 27th induction taking place in April 2012, The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Guns N' Roses, Beastie Boys, Donovan and The Faces have all been named to the Hall.

I have nothing against RHCP. As far as I am concerned they had two good albums; 1989's Mother's Milk and 2006's Stadium Arcadium. Guns N' Roses? They haven't been GNR since Slash left. The band met with a creative decline immediately after 1987's Appetite For Destruction and a swifter decline followed Use Your Illusion (1 and 2).
The Beastie Boys, also named to this year's inductee list stand above the others, at the very least for their groundbreaking music and consistency of quality output. 1986's Licensed to Ill still gets regular radio airplay. The 1994 video for Sabotage, an homage to the cop shows of the 70s, has to be one of the greatest videos ever made.

Donovan with close to thirty albums and eleven Top 40 songs in the U.S. deserves his spot. The (Small) Faces can be nominated for their music, or for who used to be a member of the band. Do Steve Marriot, Ronnie Wood, and Rod Stewart sound familiar?

But where oh where is Rush in the eyes of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? 40 million records sold. The same lineup since 1974. A band that has inspired multiple generations and some of the biggest acts in the business. The band's 20th studio album Clockwork Angels is set for an April 2012 release.
Whether you listen to their recordings, or watch the band live, these prog rock pioneers will bring you something new with every appearance, with every listening. Lyrics filled with wit and humour, the biggest contradiction is their almost exclusive male following. Every musician wants to be them, every guy wants to play like them, and every woman wants to be their distant cousin.

If you aren't convinced then you must not have seen the brilliant documentary on the band Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage. Sign the petition here. Let's get Rush into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame where they belong.
Rush 1974


Random Conversations

A colleague approached me the other day. We were each doing separate business in the washroom, but our paths intersected at the hand dryers. Yes. Thankfully not before.

Colleague: "So, Shawn did you unpack your stuff?"

I stare blankly, blinking, thinking that perhaps I could not clearly hear what he said over the drone of the hand dryers.

"Sorry, what was that?" I asked.

Colleague: "Did you unpack your staff."

Shawn: "My stuff? What stuff?"

Colleague: "Your things when you moved."

Shawn: "When I moved?" I replied, completely confused. "My office? My office has been in the same place for four years."

Colleague: "No. Your place. You said you had stuff to unpack."

Shawn: "My place?" I replied, still confused. "You mean my condo?"

Colleague: "Yes, your condo."

Shawn: "Okay, my condo. I still don't know what stuff you are talking about."

Colleague: "You said you had a lot of stuff to go through. And a lot of books to pack."

I stare at him for a moment as it dawns on me that he is referring to a conversation I had with him three years ago.

Shawn: "Uh, yeah. I moved close to three years ago. Not only did I finish packing but I also finished unpacking."

I filled the awkward silence with a brief story about the one box of junk in the back of a closet I kept for a rainy day. I then hurried away before he could ask me about some other random event in my life.

Still a little confused by the line of questioning, I was tempted to go back to ask him if he remembers seeing me on a near weekly basis over the last couple years. If this was a concern for him he could have brought it up sooner. Was this his attempt at small talk? Doesn't small talk usually revolve around current events.

The next conversation with him could go something like this.
Colleague: "Did you here about The Edmund Fitzgerald? Sucks."

If not already done, we must impose a statute of limitations on old conversations. We would simply tell the other person, "That topic is prescribed." Or if the existing limitations were lifted I wish someone would tell me. I will have to answer a lot of "Why didn't you call me?" questions from the last few years.
Complete Idiot's Guide...


This is The Day

The The - This Is The Day

Well... you didn't wake up this morning,
'cause you didn't go to bed.
You were watching the whites of your eyes turn red.
The calendar on your wall is ticking the days off.

You've been reading some old letters.
You smile and think how much you've changed.
All the money in the world couldn't buy back those days.

You pull back the curtains, and the sun burns into your eyes.
You watch a plane flying across a clear blue sky.
This is the day your life will surely change.
This is the day when things fall into place.

You could've done anything, if you'd wanted
And all your friends and family think that you're lucky
But the side of you they'll never see
Is when you're left alone with the memories
That hold your life together ... like glue

This is the day your life will surely change...
The The Soul Mining


Little Drummer Boy

The folks at Funny or Die put together another great video for Christmas. Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly do their spoof of the David Bowie, Bing Crosby classic Peace on Earth / Little Drummer Boy. I do not go for the Xmas music but if I had to pick one song, one rendition, it would be the Crosby - Bowie song, not the lyrics but the song itself. 
Doesn't hurt that I was always a big fan of Bowie. Rumour is that on the same show that Crosby and Bowie recorded the song, they also did a rendition of Heroes.


Black Friday Shopping Prank

This made laugh out loud. I've watched it twice and laughed both times. On Black Friday two guys go into a store and attempt to buy an insane list of nonsensical shopping items. The catch is, they don't know what is coming up on the list. The best part is when they themselves are trying not to crack up. 

I am getting my list together just in time for Christmas. Anybody want to go shopping with me?


No Mo' Mo

My mo has gone the way of the dodo. That is to say, not extinct but shaved and down the drain. I cannot say it was fun. I can say that I am glad it is over.

I look younger and less distinguished (apparently) without my moustache. Which is offset by my receding hairline, which makes me look older and also less distinguished. If you are wondering where all that the money raised during the campaign goes click here.

Now that Movember is gone, I guess the next thing to look forward to is Cocktober. Or maybe Vaginauary.

Movember in 30 days and 60 photos, accompanied by Big Sugar, It's All Over Now


Can Facebook save the Expos?

The answer of course, is no. Facebook cannot save the Expos. That horse left the barn carrying David Samson and Jeffrey Loria some years back. They're gone. Kaput. Defunct. Pining for the fjords, as it were. Montreal ain't getting no MLB team back in the city any time soon.

All that said, a Facebook page is doing its darnedest to keep the memories alive and in technicolour for any and all remaining fans of the team to view.

The page at has a massive (well, for a dead team, at least) fan base of more than 122,000 people and has been posting vintage photos, videos, mash-ups in a balls-put attempt to keep The Expos in the hive-mind of social networking's public consciousness.

Go. Have a look. If you're an Expos fan or a baseball fan in general, some of the imagery is just priceless.

The site is well-constructed, funny, sentimental and even elicits an occasional tear from we die-hard fans of the lost Canadian baseball team (may Bill Lee appear in Bud Selig's dreams as a cross-dressing crack-whore intent on pitching fastballs of hellfire at his nuts for eternity for this travesty!).

Let's all remember the following: Montreal is where Jackie Robinson played before being called up into the majors. Montreal is where Pete Rose was playing when he collected his 4000th hit (yeah, he was way past his prime and in the throes of his whole gambling scandal, but still). Montreal was the first MLB expansion city outside the U.S. Montreal is where "El Presidente" became just the 13th pitcher in baseball history to record a perfect game.

Ah, the memories.
And on a bit of a tangent, but still on Montreal sporting clubs… WTF with the Habs this year?!?! Thoughts/rants/recipes welcome.