Friday, September 13th, 2013

An Incredibly Long Conversation With Tim Rutili Of Califone

If you don’t like reading interviews about musical performers taking mushrooms, washing meat out of semi trucks, and about biblical figure Moses creaming his robe, Billy Corgan’s friends, Modest Mouse's Isaac Brock’s jaw, or first girlfriends dying way, way too soon, then just don’t click on this, or touch it or however you were planning on interacting with this, just stop.

If you like Califone, you know that their new record Stitches is very good, and you love how the music they make is an amalgamation of organic, folksy-type string instrumentation combined with technology (and by technology, I mean broken, misused/abused technology or often just the sound of electronic [...]


Send An Awl Reader To A Kraftwerk Concert With A Scalper

Thus far into Kraftwerk’s week-long residency at MoMA, not many individuals have popped up on Craigslist offering up their +1 for sale. Maybe it's because people who were lucky enough to purchase two tickets for one of the eight shows during the online sale/debacle must present an ID bearing the same name as the purchaser’s to gain entry into the concert. It’s a really big deal! So presumably they’re taking someone who is equally passionate about the music, or dragging a loved one who they’re trying to convert. (Which is never quite as magical as we hope.)

Whatever the case, it seems that most ticket holders don’t want [...]


Things Chris Jones Wished Women Treated His Semen Like

"Most women act as though they're sexual Olympians, as though they're doing the men in their lives the greatest of favors merely by presenting themselves like a downed deer strapped to the hood of a car. Some of you are deluding yourselves…. Like, maybe grab a mirror and spend some time learning how your own body works. It's nice, too, when you don't treat our semen like it's battery acid." —Chris Jones, Esquire.

20) Fire Jolly Ranchers

19) Arby's Jamocha Shake

18) Soft-Boiled Egg

17) Melted Toffifay Candy

16) Steri-Fab Bed Bug Killer

15) Grape Snow Cone


Some Other Conversations With A Fact-Checker

The publication of The Lifespan of a Fact, which is based on seven years of email exchanges between writer John D'Agata and fact-checker Jim Fingal, has prompted a lot of thoughtful discussion (an excerpt from the book ran in this month's Harper's). Unmentioned up till now, however, is that while D'Agata was emailing with Fingal, he also was engaged in a tense exchange with another fact-checker charged with readying one of his essays for publication. It was to be an epic piece of writing: concerned with the depletion of Lake Michigan's resident sturgeon population due to faulty Federal government practices, the essay also included relevant meditations [...]


At The Multiplex: Some Movie Pitches For Hollywood!

Is there anything playing in movie theaters this summer? I love Owen Wilson, but seeing him strolling in Dockers in that Midnight in Paris poster turned me off. I loved Bridesmaids, though I was disheartened to hear some of the dialogue they expected me to believe Jill Clayburgh's character would say. Also, it could have been whittled down from its six-hour running time. Beyond that, there's what? Are you really going to see Thor and Green Lantern? If it’s not a sequel to a kids movie or a film about a superhero, it's just not in theaters. That's a shame. Here's a handful of movie ideas that would put [...]


Questions About Heaven

Do you believe in heaven? Will you “make it” up there, one day? Looking down on your loved ones for all of eternity? Do you think looking down on your loved ones for all of eternity sounds like heaven? Does it sound pleasurable? Being able to see what your kids, relatives and friends are up to and not being able to do anything about it? Except for maybe sending them a sign? Do you really believe you could send a “sign” that one of them would understand? Wouldn’t be too cryptic?

Don’t you think that if everyone in heaven could send a sign to someone on earth, it [...]


Patriots Ruin Halloween For Children

Dear New England Patriots,

Thanks for ruining my kid’s Halloween. Given a choice of either trick-or-treating or seeing the Vikings vs. the Patriots, my 6 year-old chose to endure a four-hour car ride and attend his first ever NFL game. What he got in return was a swift kick in the pumpkins when you made him turn in his “dangerous” costume before he could enter Gillette Stadium. Truth be told, he didn’t even care about wearing his costume to the game, but I guess we were emboldened and delighted by YOUR statement to fans and the media.


Transcript To Jude Law's Very Short Taxi TV Anecdote About How He Learned He Had Landed A Role In Some Shakespeare Production

"I was… crashing… at… a… friend's flat… which… is to… say, uh… He… this… friend… put… down… a… he… went… to… procure… a… flat… or… as… you… say… here… apartment… and… there… was… a… lease… and… he… obtained… it… and… had… a… friend… who… knew… that… I… had… traveled… by… aeroplane… to… uh… New… Amsterdam… or… New… York?…


Dear Jonah Goldberg: Did We Really Go to the Same Dragon Movie?

Dear Jonah Goldberg,

Did we really go to the same dragon movie? And you watched it twice with your proto-meta-pseudo-post-Hollyweird-what-spineless-moral-would-liberal-wusses-bury-in-it glasses? Because I just watched it with some giant gray IMAX goggles. And I didn't see some "in life, there are no villains," subtext. I just saw a bunch of fatheaded Vikings who were stubbornly torching a lot of their own resources, energy and lives stuck fighting an enemy primarily because they were morons who lived on a tiny island where all of their Viking stuff-like sheep, for example, were easy pickins' for predators. (Incidentally, I thought Vikings, you know, explored more, got the hell out of [...]


Do You Think Wimpy Was Just Asking For Any Kind of Hamburger?

From time to time, The Awl offers its space to normal, everyday people with a perspective on national issues. Today, we're pleased to bring you this report by Jeff Johnson, who, after reading Padgett Powell and recent reports on Popeye's spinach abuse, realized that he has some questions about Wimpy. Should you somehow answer all of his questions in a comment, he will buy you a Shake Shack hamburger next Tuesday. No fibbing. Shake Shack is not affiliated with this promotion.

Were you familiar with the character Wimpy in the cartoon Popeye? Did a comic strip better convey, perhaps, Wimpy's-Depression-era desperation when it came to begging albeit [...]