Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Mini Me

I recently referred to Asher as my doppelganger, honestly believing that this was hyperbole. 

... And then Bryan and I found this picture from Asher's camera.

  Keep staring at it. Eventually the two faces will merge into one. Seamlessly.

Bryan was honestly a little freaked out. And he sees us both every single day. Together.

Eerie. Genetics are eerie.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Interesting New Series by Photographer Asher Bell

It's all about the transience of time and matter...
 As well as the importance of perspective, 
seeing the world not as it presents itself but as you present yourself to it

How quickly we race through life

Our attempt to outrun the storms that chase us

The fleetingness of seasons... and travel

Now this series is fascinating...

Note his commentary on the necessity of looking both forward and back,
interspersed with details of the chaos of so- called human civilization.


Truly, it is genius that can draw so much wisdom from his limited experience. 
If only we all traveled in his booster seat.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

This is why artists shouldn't do science

Backstory: Elijah, 10, had an assignment in Health that involved weighing slices of various fruits and vegetables, leaving them under a lamp overnight, then weighing them again. The point was to demonstrate water loss.

And this is why he still can't tell you the point of the experiment:

The best part: his 32 year old father was the one who set up the speech bubbles and celery suicide.



Monday, November 15, 2010

The Lesson That Comes Back to Bite Me... and The Dresden Dolls

Saturday night, I left my house.


The full story is that my brother-in-law Aaron drove up from Florida, so that he and I could attend the Dresden Dolls show in Atlanta together. We had an amazing time, the band is OUTSTANDING, and that's all I'm going to say on the matter.*

This I will say, however: Dear Lord in Heaven, is Brian Viglione an amazing drummer. I'm fairly certain I stood with my mouth hanging open, drooling a little, watching him play. As a matter of fact, watching him play drums should count as drum research, and I should receive some kind of NaNoWriMo write-off for it. Not sure how that would work though.

What lesson did I learn watching him pound his drums like a man who knows his basics, has more than the standard two arms & two legs, respects the classics and plays with unbounded joy?

Um... Only that I reeeeeeally wish I would have learned to play drums when I was fifteen. That's a missed opportunity I'm sorely regretting these days. For serious.

 ~Thanks to Aaron for the 1000th time for inviting me along.~

*The band is potty-mouthed, sings controversial subject matter and condones offensive behavior/ philosophies. I can't listen to their music with my children anywhere near, and that means I can't recommend them in good conscience from this blog. For what it's worth, however, they are amazing musicians, and I enjoyed their performance thoroughly.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Christian Music, Girl Drummers and Skillet

I've mentioned that my brother is my music dealer, right? Okay, so here's a story for you: About six years ago, I traveled with my family from New York to Tennessee for my cousin's wedding. While we were traveling, my brother Justin loaned me a couple of CDs to listen to while we drove. I was riding with my grandfather, I should mention, who was very cool about listening to these bands that had to be grating on his nerves. The first CD was Mortal or their later incarnation Fold Zandura, not sure which, but neither I nor my grandfather could take more than a few songs of the CD at a time. And then I slipped in the second CD -- Skillet's Alien Youth.

Instant love.

It's difficult to find Christian music -- actual Christian music with worshipful content and outspoken artists -- that rock. Take my word on this. Skillet has been good for that. Alien Youth marked the beginning of my crush on this band. The subsequent album, Collide, released about that time, and my crush deepened.

After Collide, Skillet released Comatose. Elijah loves Comatose. My infatuation cooled, however. The music is good, but it's not as hard, not as edgy. It's hard for me to pinpoint exactly; it feels watered down, not the message, just their sound.

Last year, Skillet released their latest album, Awake. I didn't bother to buy it. The singles are very catchy, but they're also obviously derivative of other bands, primarily secular bands. "Monster" in particular sounds startlingly like Three Days Grace's "Animal I Have Become."

I have no patience for this kind of borrowing, especially from Christian artists. We don't take enough criticism simply playing rock music, but then we have to make ourselves sound like mimics and thieves of secular artists? It's not right.

To make a rather abrupt segue: Skillet has the distinction of having a female drummer. An amazing, absolutely rockin' female drummer. Actually, no, let me make a further distinction: Skillet had an amazing, absolutely rockin' drummer named Lori Peters. In 2007, she retired.

featuring drummer Lori Peters

However, when Lori Peters retired, Skillet acquired their second amazing, absolutely rockin' female drummer, Jen Ledger.  Jen Ledger is also a vocalist, which is pretty awesome.

featuring drummer Jen Ledger

And there you have it, ladies and gentlemen, proof that girls can rock the drums just as hard as the guys.

Which brings me to Drum Research Lesson Five, as demonstrated above by both Lori & Jen:

If your hair isn't flying in your face, you're obviously not doing it right.

(Check out Skillet's single "Hero," to listen to Jen Ledger singing. It's highly enjoyable.)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Lessons to Live By

For NaNoWriMo, I am working on a novella about a girl drummer. The downside is, of course, that while I am indeed a girl, I am not indeed a drummer. Commence research!

...I love research.

Lesson One:

Always Respect the Classics.

Drumming research Lesson Two:

It doesn’t hurt to have more than the standard two arms & two legs.

Drumming Research Lesson Three:

There is not one DURN thing wrong with simplicity.

Drumming Research Lesson Four:

Joy is essential.

(Being Cobus is pretty sweet, too.)

Notice that all of these drummers are guys? Yeah, there are girl drummers out there, in the wide world, but they're not as prevalent, unfortunately. 

On that note, come back tomorrow to sample two excellent female drummers and Lesson #5.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

How Asher sees the world

So, my little doppelganger had a birthday about six weeks ago, and I, being a kind and wonderful mother, set him up with his own camera. (Remember the part where my small son takes better pictures than I do?)

I know, right? I'm awesome.

Anyway, I thought it might be refreshing to actually post pictures instead of music videos, so I give you "Asher's Photography: The World As Seen From the Backseat, In A Booster Seat"

Pretty Fall Foliage; Streaky Window

Big Tree and Reflection

"Slow Down, Mom, the trees are blurring."


"Mom? Mommy? Mom? I yuv you."

"Are you listening to me?"

"Ten and two, Mommy. Oh, and could you slow down around the corners?
I'm trying to shoot the scenery, here.Thanks."

Sunday, November 7, 2010

National Novel Writing Month: 30 days of ignoring housework

While I'm plugging along for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo - see the button on the sidebar to see my progress) and trying to decide if blogging is best left to people much better organized and less lazy than I, you should enjoy this happy Hammock cookie.

Basically, Hammock is the best music to listen to while writing. Not distracting, not irritating, not repetitive nor boring. I'm also appreciating those qualities in Red Sparowes and Mumford & Sons, as well as the always reliable Damien Rice, City & Colour and Common Children (Delicate Fade and The Inbetween Time only... Writing to Skywire is like trying to listen to someone telling you a secret of great significance while you're standing beneath a busy overpass in a crowded city: not impossible but certainly not advised).

Enjoy your cookie. :-)