johan santana = cy young (please)



That's three central division championships. Let's not get ahead of ourselves, people.

Tonite, my hometown Minnesota Twins come face-to-face with the evil empire in the first round of the baseball playoffs. So do I watch the game, or do I tune into the vice presidential debate instead? And what about the season finale of Nip/Tuck, or even the Gilmore Girls for that matter? Wow, I've really got some tough choices in store for me tonite.

Speaking of politics, MoveOn.org's Vote For Change Tour is rolling into St. Paul's Xcel Energy Center, featuring performances by Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band, R.E.M. & Bright Eyes with proceeds going to get-out-the-vote mobilizers America Coming Together. Also returning to his hometown today is Al Franken, who will be broadcasting his Air America radio show (12-3pm ET) from the Pantages Theatre in downtown Mpls.

I will probably be seeing Mr. Franken later in the day at a democratic fundraiser, where he will be appearing along with first daugter-to-be Alexandra Kerry & local heartthrob Josh Hartnett. There will also be a performance by Dan Wilson (of the Mpls band Semisonic, not the longtime Seattle Mariners catcher). My folks were generous enough to front me the donation fee, as they themselves cannot attend - though they will be rocking out with The Boss later on while I decide what to watch on TV.

MOV RNC remix - Keeping America Scared (5.1mb)

I heard about the above video on the Majority Report (via Atrios), who also pointed me toward an excellent article by journalist Naomi Klein entitled Baghdad Year Zero. It appeared in the September issue of Harpers, and is essential reading in helping to better understand how Bush & the neo-cons' failed economic policies in Iraq have fueled the current insurgency. It's a semi-long read, so you might want to set a little time aside.



In last week's post-debate post, I included some fiery commentary on the part of indie rocker Ted Leo, who thought that Kerry had blown it (though he clearly didn't, at least according to the conventional wisdom several days later). While I was attempting to get over nasty cold (currently in the mucous faze) over the weekend, I threw in my dvd of Dirty Old Town, which documents Ted's summer 2003 show at the Siren Festival on Coney Island, NYC. Besides the cold, I must have a little Ted Leo on-the-brain.

MP3 Ted Leo & The Pharmacists - "Shake The Sheets"
The title track from Ted's forthcoming album with his band the Pharmacists (which comes out in two weeks on Lookout Records) is remarkable, and IMO the best song on the disc. I tried my best to decipher the lyrics, but couldn't quite make them all out (please comment with your corrections):
I said
I wonder how it is I'm standing here
when war is raging everywhere under the sky
I feel defeated here by everything
cheated here by everyone on every side

I wanna take you to a quiet place
never ask the meaninglessness (to cry?)
when will we get (out of our shallow grave?)
find the time to breathe a sigh

I've been working too hard to be living in (late?)
walking all night till I'm chilly & (lazy?)
wasting the time I've been given to maybe
wait for the day of a (million?)

I wanna take it to the president
him & all his government (???)
I wanna sweep the halls of arrogance
sweep the walls of the excrement of these baboons

but I respect the prize, the covenant
I respect the process, I respect the rules
when will we find the cause which resonates
to shake the sheets & make us move

you've been working too hard to be living in (late?)
walking all night till you're shiverin' & (dizzy?)
wasting the time you've been given to maybe
wait for the day of a (million?)

and she said
roll out & make your mark!
pull on your boots & march!
go down & meet me where
you'll find me doing my own part

roll out your dented car
maybe it won't go far
but if you do everything you can
well babe, that's more than a start


and she said
go out & make your mark!
pull on your boots & march!
go down & meet me where
you'll find me getting ready

sometimes it's gonna hurt
sometimes you're gonna deserve it
but if you hold on to what you got
I know you'll keep it steady

so there's no end to work
so there's no end to (???)
maybe the answer's there
but I am going steady

so cut out your (morning fuss?)
I know you'll make it work
how you gonna save the world
when the world ain't ready

Damn. Ted vents his frustrations with the government, yet wonders what he really can do about it within his already busy day-to-day life, wanting it all to just go away. But the answer, as his friend tells him (notice the conversational aspect of the song), is a strong yet realistic call-to-arms for political activism. He acknowledges that it's hard & it won't always work out, but that the effort still matters. The song's final line, "How you gonna save the world when the world ain't ready?" that really hammers it home for me. It's like the gay marriage issue right now. Much of the country isn't ready for it to be commonplace in American life today. But in twenty years, the fact that there ever was a such a restriction on gay rights will be almost as shameful & embarrassing as segregation IMO.

BTW: Props to Info Typewriter for giving me a head start on those lyrics.

MP3 Ted Leo - "Ex-Factor" (live 2.12.99)
I would be hard pressed to find another track that could truly stand up next to "Shake The Sheets," so I thought I'd share this Lauryn Hill cover, which originally appeared on her 1998 LP The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. A while back, I found this live performace from 1999, which featured both a solo set (which this song comes from) and a full band set. While Ted doesn't hit all the high notes perfectly, he certainly shows off his considerable vocal range while he makes the valliant attempt. I wonder if it was this kind of sh** that eventually caused his vocal chord injury last year.

On one last note, Daily Show correspondent Rob Corddry is apparently also into Ted Leo at the moment, so I'm in decent company I suppose.

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Blogger bigrockcandymountain @ 10/05/2004 06:57:00 AM:

As a confirmed Cub fan,and, by extension, White Sox hater...all i can say is...go Twins. If Johan doesn't get they Cy Young, it'll be a sad day in baseball hell. Contract this, Bud. Seriously...yr Twins got a National League boy switching sides.    


Blogger ilb @ 10/05/2004 08:17:00 AM:

That's MR. Info Typewriter to you! :)

I fucking LOVE "Shake The Sheets". The best part about that song is that Ted includes himself in all of this. He's all "Put on your boots and march!" but then he makes sure to let you know that he'll be there too. It's like he wouldn't ask you to do something that he wouldn't do. Respect.

People, go buy this album when it comes out!!!

PS - Go Twins!    


Blogger mr gilbert @ 10/21/2004 08:37:00 PM:

actual final lyrics to "Shake The Sheets" by Ted Leo:

I said, "I wonder how it is I'm standing here,
when war is raging everywhere under the sky?
I feel defeated here by everything, cheated here by everyone on every side
I want to take you to a quiet place,
& never ask the meaninglessness to reply
When will we get an hour to celebrate, find the time to breathe a sigh?
I've been working too hard to be living, and later
Walking all night, until I'm shivering, & is it
Wasting the time I've been given, to maybe
Wait for the day of oblivion?
I want to take it to the president, him & all the cabinet, with a broom
I wanna sweep the Halls of Arrogance,
sweep the walls of the excrement of these baboons
But I respect & prize the covenant -
I respect the process, I respect the rules
When will we find a cause as resonant as
to shake the sheets & make us move?
You've been working too hard to be living, and later
Walking all night, until I'm shivering, & is it
Wasting the time I've been given, to maybe
Wait for the day of oblivion?" and she said
"Roll out & make your mark. Pull on your boots & march.
Then roll on & meet me where you'll find me doing my own part
Roll out your dented car. Maybe it won't go far
But if you do everything you can, well babe, that's more than a start
Roll out & make your mark. Pull on your boots & march.
Then roll on & meet me where you'll find me good & ready
Sometimes it's gonna hurt, sometimes you're gonna deserve it
But if you hold on to what you got, I know you'll keep it steady
So there's no end to work, so there's no end to murk
So everything is dirt, but I am pure & steady
So cut out the morbid verse. I know you'll make it work
And how you gonna save the world, when the world ain't ready?"    


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