Raw Power

Seattle super group RAW POWER. From left to right that’s Duff McKagan on bass, Mark Arm singing, Barrett Martin on drums, and Mike McCready on guitar. They played a forty-five minute set of Iggy and the Stooges covers at this KEXP/Market Foundation fund-raising event.

Here’s the set list.

Little Doll

T.V. Eye

I Gotta Right

Need Somebody

Down on the Street

Search and Destroy


And here’s a Rolling Stone Magazine review of the show:

The coup was bringing Arm in to play the Iggy Pop role. Possessing one of the best voices in rock, and stage presence to burn, he would have been the obvious choice regardless of his status as hometown icon. Crucially, he was smart enough not to mimic Pop’s wild-card stage antics. Instead, he bent and bowed his body, and saved his energy to belt each tune with a perfect mixture of snotty disregard and growling disgust. He had a little fun in the frontman role too, introducing his bandmates by referencing their pre-fame bands, like McKagan’s punk days as a member of the Fartz and the Fastbacks, and McCready’s pre–Pearl Jam band Warrior.

And here’s a YouTube video.

And Charles Peterson photos here.

And for those of you wondering why the sky is white in Seattle on sunny, summer evening (The Bluest Skies are in Seattle), it’s  because of all the huge forest fires in the Okanagan Valley east of the mountains. The winds blew the smoke into the Puget Sound for the whole weekend. Our skies looked East Coast white. Pretty weird…

(Updated August 26th with Rolling Stone review, video, Peterson photos link, and comment about the white sky).

This new century needs new rules for walking mostly because of cellphones. Some people are so engrossed by what’s happening on the tiny screen in their hands, they have no idea what’s going on around them or how many other people are out walking at the same time they are. So here’s a list of rules: Some of them haven’t changed since a hundred years ago when cars took over roads, and people had to learn rules for walking on sidewalks or sides of roads; the new ones are pretty cellphone-centric.

  1. When you step onto a city sidewalk, take to look at all the people walking, biking, and driving around. Be aware that you are not the only person on the street.
  2. Stay to the right and keep up with traffic just like you do when you drive a car. Walking down the wrong side of the street confuses people coming toward you. They’d rather not have to step into the paths of the oncoming pedestrians on their left in order to avoid you.
  3. Don’t stop suddenly unless you know for sure that nobody is right on your heels.
  4. If you have to do more than just glance at your cellphone to see what time it is or check who just texted you, then you should start to move out of the way of other people, because if you start texting or checking your calendar or websites, you will slow down. Not a terrible violation on a quiet street, but during rush hours or lunch hours, people have no patience for it.
  5. Never stand still in the middle of the sidewalk unless you are the only person on the block.
  6. When walking with a group of people, don’t walk two or three or four abreast and take up the whole sidewalk. Groups normally walk at a slower pace, so there will be people behind you that want to get around your group, and people walking towards you who need an unobstructed path to continue in their direction. Not everyone is into playing “sidewalk chicken”.
  7. Don’t hog your pedestrian “right of way”. Sure, pedestrians always have the right of way at intersections, but if there are cars waiting patiently to make a right turn on a green light and you step into the lane they’d like to turn into while the signal is flashing “DON’T WALK” just as the traffic light turns yellow, you are impeding traffic. Some cities, like Seattle for instance, have horrendous rush-hour traffic. Think of First and Madison where cars are trying to turn right to get down to the ferry terminal or the waterfront, or Fourth and Pine where cars are trying to turn right onto Fourth so they can get out of town. When only one car can make the turn each cycle of the lights because of inconsiderate pedestrians, drivers get a little pissed and maybe even a little more aggressive.
  8. Jaywalking is okay if there aren’t any cars coming from either direction. Jaywalking is not okay if there are cars lined up in both directions and you and the mob you are part of continue walking in front of lines of cars trying to get through an intersection when the light is green for them.
  9. If you get to an intersection just as the traffic light turns green for cars going in your direction, and the pedestrian signal requires you to push a button before the traffic light turns green to trigger the WALK signal, it’s okay for you to walk even though the sign says DON’T WALK.
  10. If that same type of intersection has a left turn light that permits drivers to turn through the road you want to cross, it’s not okay to walk against the DON’T WALK signal.
  11. While walking a dog on a crowded sidewalk, keep it on a short leash.
  12. Stay to the right while walking or running on shared pedestrian and bike trails, like the Burke Gilman trail in Seattle. Bikes are going much faster than you can walk or run, so even thought you didn’t see a bike behind you last time you did a head check, there will be one, and the rider doesn’t want to guess wrong about which way you might wander on the path (and you will wander if you are reading texts, emails, or website on  you cellphone). The main idea here is to walk in a predictable fashion on the right side of the path.
  13. If a trail has designated lanes or paths for bikers and walkers, use the correct path.
  14. Don’t stand still and block an entryway to a trail. You don’t have the right of way if you are standing still. You do if you are walking.
  15. Never let your dog run free on a trail used by bikes. If your free-running dog gets hit by a bike or kicked by a frightened pedestrian, it’s your fault. Got that?
  16. If you know you’ll be walking on a dark unlit road, wear at least one item of clothing that drivers can see. Wearing all black is a bad idea.
  17. And again, remember you are not the only person on the street.

Now go for a walk downtown or through your neighborhood, and have a good time. Maybe you’ll end up at your favorite cocktail lounge. You can Über home.

I woke up this morning to a 6:30am call from the Seattle Police Department. They asked me if I knew where my car was. I rubbed my eyes and stumbled over to look out the window.

“It’s right there,” I pointed.

SPD: “Do you know where your front license plate is?”
Me: “I probably don’t, since you’re asking me that question.”
SPD: “An officer will be by in the next hour to take your statement.”


SPD: “Knock knock knock.”

Me: “Hi there.”

SPD: “Are you Añ†hÓ¨n¥?”


SPD: “Is that your car?” <points>


SPD: “Someone stole your front license plate and put it on their stolen car, placing a different plate on the front of your car. Your stolen plate was found on a stolen car because parking enforcement noticed that, even though the car with your front plate matched the description of your car, the rear plate on the stolen car was from another car that also matches your car’s description. Finding that the plates didn’t match, the officer attending parking in the Gasworks Park area called it in and discovered that the front plate was stolen, the back plate was stolen, and the car was stolen. None of these items were stolen from the same owner. I was called in to investigate the front plate that had been stolen from the person who owned the plates that are not yours, at which time I found the final stolen plate on the front of your car.”

He holds up the plate to show it to me.

SPD: “I’ve put your missing front plate back on your car and at this point you should have no expectation of involvement in this case.”

Me: “Well, jesus, thanks for doing all of that. That’s f’ing awesome. I didn’t even have to put my own plates back on my car.”

SPD: “I’m sorry for disturbing you.”

Me: **BIG HIGH FIVE** “Man, I’m just glad to be part of this story. Now I have to go to work. You get to continue adventuring.”

SPD: “Thanks, man.”

He gave me his business card with the case number. I wonder if there’s a less lying version of my story from the body cam recording of this encounter. You guys try: 15-279263

via The Guardian – Rain of Ruin,

The United States remains the only country to ever vaporize tens of thousands of civilians with an atomic bomb. America did it to bring an end to a long, costly war. Three days later they dropped another one on Nagasaki just to make sure Japan got the message. Japan surrendered on August 15, 1945.

The Atlantic has a lengthy article about how the war bureaucrats made the cold-hearted decisions to bomb the two cities.

Hiroshima, a city of 318,000, held similar appeal [as the much larger industrial city of Kyoto]. It was “an important army depot and port of embarkation,” said Stearns, situated in the middle of an urban area “of such a size that a large part of the city could be extensively damaged.” Hiroshima, the biggest of the “unattacked” targets, was surrounded by hills that were “likely to produce a focusing effect which would considerably increase the blast damage.” On top of this, the Ota River made it “not a good” incendiary target, raising the likelihood of its preservation for the atomic bomb.

The meeting barely touched on the two cities’ military attributes, if any. Kyoto, Japan’s ancient capital, had no significant military installations; however, its beautiful wooden shrines and temples recommended it, Groves had earlier said (he was not at the May 10 meeting), as both sentimental and highly combustible. Hiroshima’s port and main industrial and military districts were located outside the urban regions, to the southeast of the city.

Many people argued then and continue to argue now that the killing of 20,000 soldiers in Hiroshima, and the incineration of the two cities that killed around 200,000 civilians was the right thing to do because it saved tens of thousands of lives of American servicemen who have been killed if the US had invaded Japan. Others argue that Japan was near the end anyway, and would have surrendered soon – atomic bombs or not.

From what I’ve read, I agree with the latter. The bombings were the most horrific acts of violence in the history of warfare.

Most of the images we see in today’s news focus on the mushroom clouds and the distant views of the devastated cities. Not many show the very horrible close-up images, like this one.

Nagasaki photo by Yasuke Yamahata

Nagasaki photo by Yasuke Yamahata

You know how to find more images if you want to. One is enough for me today.

Today is the first full day of summer, so you need a list of songs that sound great on a hot sunny day. I’ve been listening to summer-themed songs and music that just feels right on a sunny day, and here’s my final list with a few comments and videos.

Where is the Sun? – Stag (2014)

I heard this song on Quilty’s show on KEXP a few weeks ago on a cloudy Sunday afternoon. Seattle is normally cloudy and damp until July 5th every year. So it’s no wonder a Seattle band would ride a somewhat melancholy song asking when the sun will show up. I stayed away from most songs that were a bit of downer, but this one works for an opening track because by the end it’s pretty upbeat. I should also mention that Seattle has had a great summer so far, even though summer didn’t officially start until today. We’ve already had seven days with high temperatures over eight degrees in June. We don’t normally get this kind of whether until July.

Pipeline – The Chantays (1962)

Perhaps my all-time favorite surf song. I never get tired of this classic.

Good Vibrations – The Beach Boys (1966)

Mr. E’s Beautiful Blues – Eels (2000)

Summertime Boy – Seasick Steve (2015)

I hadn’t really listened to Seasick Steve until this year when he put out Sonic Soul Surfer. Here’s the video.

Hot Fun in the Summertime – Sly and the Family Stone (1969)

Low Rider – War (1975)

Yes I know they have a song titled “Summer”, but I like this song in this set because it feels like summer, and if you are a fan of War, then it makes you think of “Summer”.

Mexican Radio – Wall of Voodoo (1983)

Driving and listening to the radio, and sometimes not understanding a word that is said.

Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini – Brian Hyland (1960)

Got to have at least one cheesy summer song.

Rockaway Beach – Ramones (1977)

Aloha Steve and Danno – Radio Birdman (1978)

Radio Birdman’s tribute to the 1960’s TV show, and it includes them playing the theme song in the song. Double fun!

Misirlou – Dick Dale and his Del-Tones (1962)

Another great surf song made even more famous when Quentin Tarantino included it in the soundtrack for Pulp Fiction.

Soft Hand – Willard Grant Conspiracy (2003)

This song just feels like summer to me.

Double Vision – Houndstooth (2015)

From the great new album, No News from Home, that will probably make the Best of 2015 list.

On My Balcony – Flunk (2004)

A perfect summer song. About summer, feels like summer, and I just want to hear it over and over.

Plastic Radio – Viva Voce (2011)

This song might not have anything to do with summer, but it sounds like it does.

Who Loves the Sun – The Velvet Underground (1970)

Summer Nights – Marianne Faithfull (1964)

Blue Sunshine – Blue Giant (2010)

Summer Wine – Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood (1967)

I wasn’t familiar with this song. I found it searching for songs about summer, and I think it’s the best find for this setlist. Here’s the video.

Coconut – Harry Nilsson (1971)

Doctor! I love this song. Another one that just sounds like summer.

Working on My Tan – Tim Curry (1981)

A staple during my college years. It’s a song that has to be on every summer compilation.

Stupid Marriage – Specials (1979)

Naked woman, naked man,
Where did you get that nice sun tan?
You live in a castle built of sand
Naked woman, naked man…

Mr. Moto – The Bel-Airs (1961)

This had to end with a surf song, and this was the perfect one.

According to the latest CNN/ORC poll, Americans now have a more favorable opinion of George W. Bush than they do of President Barack Obama.

CNN reports:

According to the poll, 52% of adults had a favorable impression of George W. Bush, 43% unfavorable. When Bush left office in 2009, only about a third of Americans said they had a positive opinion of him. In a February 2009 poll conducted about a month after he left office, Republicans were the only group among which a majority said they had a favorable view of Bush. Even among self-described conservatives, only 50% had a favorable take on the former president and champion of “compassionate conservatism.”

Bush’s overall favorability has remained well below 50% for much of his time as a presidential alum. This new poll presents a notable shift.

As of a year ago, 46% had a favorable take on the former president, 51% an unfavorable one. Since then, Bush has gained in esteem among men (up 11 points), Republicans (up 10 points), those with household incomes under $50,000 (up 10 points), younger adults (up 9 points among those under age 50) and suburbanites (up 8 points).

Liberals, non-whites, and young people are still repulsed by him. That means the conservatives and old white people who had soured on him are starting to like him again.

The polls shows people are split 49% favorable to 49% unfavorable on Obama.

How does the president who was in charge when the stock market crashed and unemployment soared; who, along with his team of despicable lying war mongers, purposefully misled us into the Iraq War that has cost our country trillions of dollars have a more favorable rating than the president who has led us out of an economic catastrophe and is trying to extract us from never-ending, unwinnable wars in the Middle East?

Now I don’t know who’s dumber: George W. Bush or the unmindful people who favor him.

Ian was walking around his bedroom this morning holding a big, black spider halloween decoration – the kind with wiry legs so you can pose it or wrap it around something. He had one of its front legs in each hand and was singing, in a low, gravelly voice, “♪ If you happy and you know it cwap you hands! ♫” then clapping the spider‘s “hands” together.


Comedian Jim Jefferies riffs on Americans and how they love their guns, via Vox:

You have guns because you like guns! That’s why you go to gun conventions; that’s why you read gun magazines! None of you give a shit about home security. None of you go to home security conventions. None of you read Padlock Monthly. None of you have a Facebook picture of you behind a secure door.

After putting up that last post, a couple of earworms wriggled their way into my internal playback loop.

Say man, when you going back to Florida?
When am I goin’ back to Florida? I don’t know, don’t reckon I ever will.
Ain’t you worried about getting your nourishment in New York?
Well, I don’t care if I do-die-do-die-do-die-do-die.

– Johnny Cash from “Orange Blossom Special”, from the album of the same name.


Florida, Florida, the redneck riviera
Florida, Florida, there’s no more pathetic place in America
Yes a man must make unpopular decisions, surely from time to time
And a man can only stand what a man can stand
It’s a wobbly volatile line

Florida, Florida, the water table is fucked
Florida, Florida, there’s no more perfect place to give it all up
A man must take his life in his own hands
Hit those nails on the head
And I respect a man who goes to where he wants to be
Even if he wants to be dead

Florida, Florida, its a tropical paradise
Florida, Florida, there’s no more perfect place to retire from life

That’s all of the lyrics to Vic Chesnutt’s “Florida” from the album West of Rome and, if you don’t own it already, you really should just stop what your doing and buy it right now.

Jeb Lund writing for The Guardian:

You might have missed it, but Florida has solved climate change. Our state, with 1,300 miles of coastline and a mean elevation of 100 feet, did not, however, limit greenhouse emissions. Instead, the state’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), under Republican governor Rick Scott, forbade employees from using terms like “climate change,” “global warming” or “sea-level rise”. They’re all gone now. You’re welcome, by the way.

It’s pointless to call linguistic distortions of reality like this Orwellian: people tune you out when you use that word and, besides, Big Brother at least had wit. These are just the foot-stamping insistent lies of intellectual toddlers on the grift. It is “nuh-uh” as public policy. This is an elected official saying, “I put a bag over your head, so that means now I’m invisible” and then going out looting. Expect to see it soon wherever you live.

The Florida Center for Investigative Reporting broke the news on Sunday, stating that the prohibition on the terms “climate change,” “global warming” and “sea-level rise” went into effect after Scott’s inauguration. Former DEP counsel Christopher Byrd and five other former employees stated that the policy was unwritten and “distributed verbally”. Even when working on projects with people outside their department, employees had to scrub reports of any mention of the terms and, when necessary, replace them with euphemisms. For instance, “Sea-level rise was to be referred to as ‘nuisance flooding’” – like your high-rise atop the San Andreas fault features an “increased likelihood of intermittent wobbliness”.

(read the whole thing)

And here’s the perfect comic to go along with it.

GW gag order