Memes and Quizzes

Song Titles Meme

Howzabout a meme to while away a Thursday afternoon? Here’s one I picked up from SamuraiFrog.

The set-up: Answer the questions using only song titles from ONE artist.

I’m sure my Loyal Readers are already rolling their eyes in their anticipation of which artist I’m going to pick for this exercise, so you know what? I’m going to confound your expectations and go with… Jimmy Buffett. Yes, that’s right, Mr. Margaritaville, about the most un-Rick Springfield-ish musician you could probably imagine, at least from within the pop-rock spectrum of the last 40 years. I realize I haven’t previously said much about my affection for Jimmy, but the fact is, I went through a pretty major Parrothead phase back in college. His imaginary landscape of seedy equatorial port cities populated by lovable scoundrels, misfits, and wanderers was immensely appealing to me at a certain point of my life, back when I was a restless and romantic young man who felt very out of place in his very buttoned-down surroundings. (Oh, who am I kidding? I still feel that way much of the time!) I own every album of his from 1973’s A White Sport Coat and a Pink Crustacean up through Far Side of the World from 2002, which is when I finally got tired of being disappointed by him. (In my opinion, his work has been on a downhill slide since the early ’90s, when he evidently became more interested in running restaurants and selling t-shirts than writing good, honest songs. The last of his albums that I unreservedly liked was Fruitcakes in 1994, and my favorites actually date from the very early “Key West records” to the mid-80s or so.) He’s released three studio albums since then and I haven’t bothered to listen to a single one of them. But anyhow, let’s get down to answering those questions, shall we?

  1. Are you a man or a female?
    “Son of a Son of a Sailor”
  2. Describe yourself.
    “It’s Midnight and I’m Not Famous Yet”
  3. How are you feeling right now?
    “Havana Daydreamin'”
  4. Describe the city you’re living in.
    “Stranded on a Sandbar”
  5. If you could go anywhere, where would you go?
    “Far Side of the World”
  6. Your favorite form of transportation?
    “Ragtop Day”
  7. Your best friend?
    “We Are the People Our Parents Warned Us About”
  8. Your favorite color?
  9. What’s the weather like?
    “King of Somewhere Hot”
  10. Your favorite time of the day?
    “Stars on the Water”
  11. If your life were a TV program, what would it be called?
    “Tryin’ to Reason with Hurricane Season”
  12. What is your life like?
    “Growing Older But Not Up”
  13. Your current relationship?
    “Perfect Partner”
  14. What gives?
    “The Weather Is Here, Wish You Were Beautiful”
  15. You expect what from the future?
  16. The way you would like to go?
    “On a Slow Boat to China”
  17. You wouldn’t mind?
    “Boat Drinks”
  18. Your fear?
    “What if the Hokey-Pokey Is All It Really Is About?”
  19. Your best advice right now?
    “Treat Her Like a Lady”
  20. If you could change your name right now, it would be?
    “Twelve Volt Man”
  21. Your motto?
    “Why Don’t We Get Drunk (and Screw)?”Oh, come on, surely you knew I couldn’t get through an exercise like this without mentioning that song, right?



“If My Childhood Plans Had Panned Out…”

A couple weeks ago, there was a cute little cartoon making the rounds titled “If My Childhood Plans Had Panned Out…” It easily lends itself to a fun mental exercise with several components to think about, so naturally somebody turned it into an Internet meme. (Thanks, Michael May!)

I chose to make my own responses to the questions raised in the form of photos, which I will place after the fold to save y’all some bandwidth. And for the record, I defined childhood for this thing as being between the ages of seven and 10, which for me would’ve covered the years 1976 through ’79. Click through if you’re curious…


20 Songs

I missed out on the heyday of the “let’s see what’s on your iPod” meme by about six years — what can I say, I’m a late adopter, part of that whole “analog kind of guy” thing — but I’ve actually got an iPod now, so when I ran across a variant of this old blogging chestnut on Tumblr last night, I couldn’t resist playing along.

If this is too passe for your tastes, feel free to surf on, but I feel like I’m finally filling a hole in my soul by participating in one of these.

Okay, maybe this experience wasn’t that profound, but it was kind of fun to see what a random sampling of my musical tastes might turn up. Fun for me, at least. Maybe not so much for you. But who’s writing this blog, anyhow?

Right, so, moving on, here’s the intro/instructions:

You can learn a lot about someone by the music they listen to. Hit “shuffle” on your iPod or MP3 player and write down the first 20 songs. No cheating or skipping songs that are shameful. That is the fun!

My list:

  1. Calling All Girls — Rick Springfield
  2. Windy — The Association
  3. The Harder They Come — Jimmy Cliff
  4. Shake Your Groove Thing — Peaches & Herb
  5. Fall from Grace — Stevie Nicks
  6. Heaven Knows — Robert Plant
  7. Ask the Lonely — Journey
  8. Sweet Talkin’ Guy — The Chiffons
  9. Listen to Your Heart — Roxette
  10. Mule Skinner Blues — The Fendermen
  11. The Road Home — Heart
  12. Nothin’ at All — Heart
  13. Some Gothic Ranch Action (instrumental from the soundtrack of Rancho Deluxe) — Jimmy Buffett
  14. Hot Girls in Love — Loverboy
  15. I Can’t Stand It No More — Peter Frampton
  16. Real Man — Bruce Springsteen
  17. Dance Hall Days — Wang Chung
  18. Don’t Look Now — Creedence Clearwater Revival
  19. La Bamba — Los Lobos
  20. Son of a Preacher Man — Dusty Springfield

Okay. Interesting that the first selection was my main man. I swear I did not set that up. I do wonder, though, exactly how that Shuffle algorithm works. You see, I can go for weeks without hearing anything from a particular genre — oldies, say — and then all of a sudden the machine is kicking out “Sweet Talkin’ Guy” and “Windy” and “Mule Skinner Blues.” Not to mention two songs by the same artist coming back to back… that doesn’t seem terribly random to me. In any event, I suppose this is a reasonably good cross section of my likes: mostly ’70s and ’80s pop-rock, some older stuff, nothing newer than ’89 or ’90, and some Jimmy Buffett thrown in for good measure. Probably nothing my Loyal Readers didn’t expect, right?


The Mighty Cave of Cool Survey

Nothing like a nice meme that you can work on a little bit at a time when your world is too crazy to allow for proper blog entries. These “quiz things,” as Jaquandor calls them, are getting harder to find; I guess they’ve become a bit passe these days, rather like blogging itself, really. But I still enjoy them, especially when, as I mentioned, I’m too busy to really do much else.

Here’s a pretty good one I found over at Michael May’s AdventureBlog


100 Things I Love About the Movies

I noticed this semi-meme list thingie over at Michael May’s Adventure Blog the other day and thought it looked like something I ought to do. There are no rules, really; it’s just an exercise in free association that asks you to name 100 things you love about movies. I interpreted that as things that made me fall in love with movies, or that rekindle my love for them when I see them again. Anyhow, it’s a list of movie-related stuff I like… how could I resist that?


What, Another TV Meme?

I know I just recently did a TV-themed meme, but this one (already done by Jaquandor and SamuraiFrog) looked sufficiently different to be worth the time, and besides, last week was one of those weeks when I couldn’t seem to produce an original and coherent blog entry to save my life — even the weekend was a washout, thanks to a overnight snowstorm that brought down tree branches all over the Compound and left me with a chainsaw in my hand for most of yesterday — but I could answer a couple of questions here and there in between doing other things. Maybe I ought to try one of those “Ask Me Anything” deals like Jaquandor and John Scalzi both do…

Anyhow, the meme begins below the fold:


Five-by-Five TV Meme, Preceded by a Bit of Ranting

I struggled all last week to compose one of my occasional political cris de couer, this one motivated by the nonsense currently going on in Wisconsin. If you’ve been in a cave for the last month — and I know at least one of my Loyal Readers whose circumstances could be described as such — Wisconsin’s Republican governor is using a budgetary crisis, which he seems to have engineered himself, as a pretense to try and force his state’s public-sector labor unions into giving up their collective bargaining rights. In shorter words, he’s union-busting. But he’s not busting all the public-sector unions. No, he’s only after the ones whose members tend to vote Democratic. The Republican-leaning police and firefighter unions are safe. Which means this whole exercise is transparently partisan and blatantly ideological. I’m not interested in debating the pros and cons of unions — Kevin Drum pretty much sums up my opinion here, and says it better than I could anyhow — but the more unsavory political truth of the Wisconsin deal makes me mad. It is only the most obvious example of how Republicans nationwide are trying to take advantage of a shaky economy to ram through a radical right-wing social agenda that they haven’t managed to accomplish in decades of trying. In other words, they’re trying to kill things Republicans hate on principle anyway, while saying they have to do it to get the economy going.


Here’s the thing: if you really care about cutting the deficit, then you’ve got to be willing to at least consider letting the Bush tax cuts expire. The tax rates during the Clinton years were hardly onerous — they were lower than the taxes in the prosperous 1950s — and they’d go a long ways toward balancing the books. And you also ought to be trying to find a way to convince the wealthy — who seem to think they’re above paying taxes — that they are still part of this country, even if they live behind locked gates, and it’s immoral of them not to contribute to the common good. Oh, and you’d get serious about making corporations pay their fair share too. And while I’m pipe-dreaming anyhow, how about re-regulating the financial industry that caused this mess anyhow? And sending a few CEOs to jail? Or at least taking their solid-gold parachutes away from them and giving the money to the employees who got laid off to bolster the stockholders’ dividends last quarter… but noooo, that’s class warfare and we can’t have that. Not unless it’s being waged on the middle-class people who actually do the work in this country and are fast on their way to becoming vassals of a new feudalism. The sad thing is, a lot of them seem to actually want that…

Yeah, anyhow that’s the gist of what I’ve been trying to write, but the damn thing just hasn’t wanted to come together in a satisfying way, so tonight I decided “Screw it, let’s do a nice harmless meme.” And as fate would have it, SamuraiFrog recently provided one…


Hey, I’m Sirius Black!

Which Great Witch Or Wizard Are You?
see more Lol Celebs

I can live with that. Sirius was awesome, with his surface-level air of the swashbuckling rogue — I’ve always been drawn to those rogues — but also a grim and regretful side, which is much more like, well, me.