October 10, 2007

FCC Restrictions Expanded to include WFMU's Bathroom


September 07, 2007

365 Days #250 - New Horizons: The New AIRCO Cylinder Plan, explained in detail by Orson Bean (mp3s)

250 MP3:
A side: OF COURSE YOU OWN 'EM (7:07) Or How to Explain Airco's New Cylinder Plan.
B side: IN WHICH WE SWITCH (3:05) An original poem by Bean about drinking your way to success.

This was an LP put out by AIRCO (now Air Products) on their cylinder exchange program, I suppose for their sales force. After you hear "OF COURSE YOU OWN 'EM", you'll have discovered that there are immense subtleties in gas cylinder rental and owning contracts. Or not. Not a musical, but one of Bean's unique one-sided phone comedy bits (well, it was also Bob Newhart's bit) also a lot like trying to explain this complicated plan while simultaneously making fun of its obscurity.

- Contributed by: Henry Lowengard

Image: Back Cover

Album: New Horizons
Catalog: GRC-8880
Credits: GOTHAM RECORDING CORPORATION - produced by Delphan Company Inc. This special material was recorded specifically for Airco's "New Horizon" Cylinder Program.
Date: 1965?

September 03, 2007

365 Days #246 - David Cooper - Your Business Builder (mp3)

246 MP3:
David Cooper - Your Business Builder (excerpt) (7:49)

This entry is excerpted from a 6-cassette set, housed in one of those fancy plastic binders, which I found at a yard sale around 15 years ago. Everything else about this item -- from the glaze-eyed photo of David Cooper on the cover, to the title of "Your Business Builder" and blurblines such as "Go Director Faster," to Cooper's autographed message to Diane & Pat to "Hurry!" -- screamed creepy with a capital C, but it wasn't until I took it home and started listening to it that I discovered in exactly which species of creepy "Your Business Builder" fell.

Cooper, it turns out, is a motivational speaker for Mary Kay Cosmetics -- or, more accurately, a third-party motivational speaker, whose topic is Mary Kay Cosmetics. MKC is such a huge phenomenon that it has spawned an outer orbit of businesses that have no official connection with the parent firm, but which in some way service those that do. Cooper's specialty is sales training.

Cooper's speaking technique, however, left me doubtful this guy could sell an ice cube in Hell. He rushes through his message -- "Hurry!," indeed -- his cadence is unsteady, his voice projection is weak, his message is inane (and not in the cleverly inane way of a good motivational speaker), and, most egregiously, he appears to suffer from some sort of neurological disorder that causes him to giggle at totally inappropriate moments.

But what do I know? Judging from his website, in the quarter-century since the 1981 release of "Your Business Builder" Cooper has attained incredible success. His product has evolved to a 19-volume series of videos, in which the master expounds on such subjects as "Achieving Over Adversity with Action!," "Are you a Rate-Card Order Taker or a Needs Meeting Pro?" and 'Why Questions Can Make You a Decision-Getting Machine!" A far cry from the 50 cents I paid for "Your Business Builder," the video series sells for $8900. Don't scoff, though -- that's a $1000 break over buying them separately!

For those requiring more personal care, Cooper's phone rates run a mere $975 an hour. You and I are obviously in the wrong business.

- Contributed by: Phil X Milstein

Images: Cover

August 30, 2007

365 Days #242 - The Great Soybean Raid of 1981 (mp3s)

242 MP3:
Tom Mason - The Great Soybean Raid of 1981 (3:57)
Mark Rice - My Momma Picks the Hits (3:37)

I have a few tribute songs in my record collection. Some Elvis tributes, even one song about the astronauts in the Challenger explosion. But I had to do an online search to find out what the heck this song was talking about. The song is called "The Great Soybean Raid of 1981", performed by Tom Mason.

In 1981, Wayne Cryts and a goodly amount of fellow farmers went to a grain elevator in Missouri to get what he felt were his soybeans back, while they were in limbo when the elevator he deposited them in went bankrupt.

You can read more details in this page I found that has a 1982 Time Magazine report about the raid.

The song on side 2, "My Momma Picks the Hits", is performed by Mark Rice, the writer of both songs on the 45.

- Contributed by: Sammy Reed

Images: Label

Media: 45rpm 7" single
Label: Mr. Music Records
Catalog: MR-31681
Credits: Both songs written by Mark Rice and produced by Ken Kilgore and Mark Rice
Date: 1981

August 11, 2007

365 Days #223 - This Is Oldsmobility (mp3s)

223 MP3:
01. Overture (3:17)
02. Don't If Your Life Away (2:16)
03. Back To Rockport, Indiana (2:39)
04. Gotta Get A Car (2:11)
05. R-R-Rough (1:54)
06. He's Got It (1:11)
07. Johnny's Dream (3:40)
08. I Need A Guy (1:43)
09. Floating On Air (2:55)
10. Ridin' The Range (0:58)
11. Oh I Feel Like Shoutin (2:12)
12. This Is OLDSmobility (1:11)
13. Finale (2:01)

This is Oldsmobility, Oldsmobile's 1958 dealer announcement show starring, "The singing sweethearts"  Bill Hayes and Florence Henderson.

- Contributed by: Th3 T0D

Images: Record

Media: 12" LP
Colour: Red
Date: 1958
Album: This Is OLDSmobility
Credits: Oldsmobile's 1958 Dealer Announcement Show. Starring Bill Hayes and Florence Henderson and Original Broadway Cast. Vocal Arrangement and Direction by Don Craig. Conducted by Sherman Frank. Produced by D.P. Brother & Company. Recorded by Hudson Recordings Inc. N.Y.

June 12, 2007

365 Days #163 - Badger Theatre Movie Phone - The Sequel (mp3s)

163 MP3:
Badger Theatre Movie Phone - The Sequel - Robin Hood: Men In Tights/Mr. Nanny/Blank Check/The Air Up There (4:40)

In 1993, I became hooked on calling the answering machine of the Badger Theatre in Reedsburg, Wisconsin, to hear proprietor Elmer Krueger's self-penned description of each week's feature presentation.  Sequels are rarely as good as the original (and this summer, we're learning that third installments are even dicier), so I make no claim that these phone messages approach the quality of the three classics I posted as part of the original 365 Days Project.  But even if none of these four messages reaches the soaring brilliance of his two-minute oration on behalf of "The Secret Garden", it's still fun to hear his sales pitch on such timeless cinematic gems as "Blank Check" and "Mr. Nanny". The Badger ceased operation as a movie theatre in 1994, another single-screen casualty of the multiplexing of America, and is now a music venue.

And Google informs me that Elmer Krueger's estate, including many posters and other pieces of movie memorabilia he'd collected through the years, was auctioned off last October 11, but thanks to 365 Days, his voice will live on.

May your life be filled with people, animals and comedy.

- Contributed by: Eric Williams

Images: Badger Marquee, Badger Theatre Memorabilia

May 29, 2007

This Week in Sex: Feel the Rush

Usb_humping_dog_center500_38439 "Feel the rush" of the G-Shot, a collagen shot in your G-spot that increases sexual pleasure. Makes me feel all tingly inside just thinking about it. Results may vary. "The site lists 68 risks that are associated with the procedure, ranging from bleeding to nodule formation," says one news report, but I didn't count. Nodule formation is hot.

Banning the sale of sex toys was supposedly not the intent of a bill in Alabama that banned the distribution of "any device designed or marketed as useful primarily for the stimulation of the human genital organs." It was just a happy coincidence. The intent was to ban nude dancing. The so called "No-Fun" bill is on its way to the Supreme Court, where the Supremes will decide if they will hear the case. How could they not? They love this sort of thing.

Naked people, I'm warning you. Stop clogging up my inbox.

  • You call it clothes optional, I call it sunburn guaranteed. British nudists are planning a "clothes optional" charity trek. They'll only take their clothes off if it's hot, which is kind of wussy. Commit, naked people!
  • "Nude people could pop up anywhere" in Vermont, which has no state law against nudity. Last year  groups of young people caused a stir by stripping naked in a downtown parking lot. This year there's been a sighting of a dude who danced nude on a downtown street while "performing acts of lewdness involving his genitals." Vermont, talk to Alabama. They wouldn't put up with this crap. They'd blow that guy's nuts off with a rifle.
  • Nude man statues are all over London. A woman comments, "He's uglier than I thought he would be." Keep your expectations low, honey, any you'll never be disappointed when the clothes come off.
  • Nudists are old. No one wants to join their crazy cult and get bug bites. Wonder why? I blame the internet. And the fact that people are uglier than you thought they would be.

USB Humping Dog. You know why dogs lick their balls? Because they can. You know why this little gizmo attaches to a USB port humps away? Because you're a dumbass who bought one and clogged up one of your USB ports with something that isn't even a flash drive. From the folks who brought you the Gentleman's Ball Scratcher. Remember?Article_img

Glow-in-the-dark underwear. This Swiss underwear will protect your man-bits from cell-phone radiation. Or you could just tell your penis to put down the phone.

The vacuum cleaner vibrator is supposed to be a great invention but it just seems like a really bad idea to me. Unless you've got dust bunnies in your hoohoo. Video.

And while we're on a shopping spree, an inflatable dildo only seems useful if you get a flat tire while you're having sex, or maybe if your plane crashes and you need a flotation device. NSFW

Thanks Kim, Prozac and Funyuns, and people who sent me great stuff I didn't get too yet.
P.S. Keep your clothes on, and if you don't, don't tell us all about it.


Continue reading "This Week in Sex: Feel the Rush" »

May 17, 2007

365 Days #137 - Goodyear Argument (mp3s)

137 MP3:
Goodyear Argument (24:23)

Just another day in paradise....

...in which our hero, having felt that he and his maid have been jerked around, and that he was subsequently threatened, by the operators of the local name-brand car repair establishment, invited representatives of the establishment to his home to discuss his plans to pursue the matter.

Some years later, I was lucky enough to pick up the recording our hero made of his conversation with those representatives, at one of the many rummage and music sales I used to be lucky enough to live near.

The conversation takes a while to get going, but builds up steadily over the last ten minutes, and should be quite the listening experience for those who like such things.

Good day, sir!

- Contributed by: Nigel Wilkinson

April 19, 2007

Hot dog!

Hotdoll1 If you REALLY loved your dog, you'd buy him his own special doggy sex toy. Thanks to Gizmodo.com for alerting the staff at my dayjob to this fine product.

April 17, 2007

365 Days #107 - The Green County Boys - Medic Emetics (mp3s)

107 MP3:
01. Little Black Pill Box (2:55)
02. I'll Try To Say No (3:15)
03. Everything Goes (4:17)
04. Glass Prostate (1:45)
05. A Little Pentothol (1:43)
06. Green Stamps (3:00)
07. Alice (2:21)
08. Wonderful Surgery (2:44)
09. Menopause (3:51)
10. Medicine Spree (2:04)

This album was the first of three that were put out by the Green County Medical Society for scholarship aid to medical students. These albums were sold at the society’s headquarters in Springfield, MO for 3.25 each.

All of the bands members were doctors from the area. The record was sold in a plain white sleeve with no information to speak of.

- Contributed by: ThE ToD

Images: Cover

Media: 12" LP
Album: Medic Emetics
Catalog: GLP1026

April 06, 2007

365 Days #96 - Tate - Oh Black Lung (mp3)

096 MP3:
Tate - Oh Black Lung (3:08)

Nothing sets the toe a-tappin' like a mournful musical tale about how a chronic, fatal disease takes its toll on multiple generations of miners in your family due working for the man underground! It's been around for a long time, but don't worry because the government has it covered. Oh, wait a minute...

- Contributed by: Chuck Tomlinson

Images: Oh Black Lung 45

Media: 45rpm 7" Single
Album: n/a
Label: Tate Records
Catalog: TA 101 A
Credits: Written by Terry Tate. Produced by Country Music Studios and Tate Bros. Music (ASCAP). Dist. By F&L Records, 50 Music Sq. W. Nashville, TN 37203.
Date: 1981

February 07, 2007

WFMU Lunch Minutes for February 7, 2007

Today, WFMU's lunch-chat was ruled by one all-powerful topic: FANTASY LUNCH CAMP.  After much debate and a slew of celebrity rejections (Josef Mengele and Michael J. Fox each received a pink slip), it was decided upon by all in attendance that the Ultimate Lunchtable Conversation Crew would consist Nicks_notesof the following members:

  • Richard Belzer
  • Eileen Brennan
  • Eric Bogosian
  • Dee Snyder
  • Rachael Ray, that useless little tart

I imagine all of these people would have much to say, yet nothing to say to each other.  Magic!!! 

Today's participating nomination committee was: Wendy the Cheese Lady, Mike Lupica, Megan Murphy, Liz Berg, Nick The Bard, Bill Zurat, and yours truly. You'd think we'd've been happy to just talk to each other.

Your task: share with us your Fantasy Lunch Camp, or provide dialog for the one we've chosen.

November 27, 2006

Coliseum Books and the Stench of Death

Coliseum Coliseum Books has been my workday refuge for almost as long as I’ve been working in New York. When I was toiling at the Evil Law Firm (the one that docked my pay for going home when my dad died), in the long-gone New York Coliseum building at Columbus Circle, I hid out down the street in Coliseum Books most every lunch hour, and sometimes after work as well. Eventually I moved on to a less-egregious dayjob, and I was delighted when Coliseum opened in their new location on 42nd Street because that’s very close to where I work now. I go in there almost every day. I also go to a lot of the special events and readings they sponsor, both in their store and across the street in Bryant Park. I’ve seen readings by authors like Jean Nathan, who wrote the “The Secret Life of the Lonely Doll,” and Debbie Stoller, who wrote the “Stitch ‘n’ Bitch” books, and some writers’ group guy who talked about travel writing. I’ve picked up some great books at Coliseum, too, weird things I’ve never seen anywhere else, not even at the Strand. A picture encyclopedia of Russian prison tattoos—I got that at Coliseum. Russky And last Christmas, when I was really, really, really broke, I suddenly realized that I was missing $10 and the only way I could think that I might have lost it was either I’d been accidentally shortchanged when I bought a Christmas-present book at Coliseum, or I’d dropped the $10 bill just as I was leaving the store. So I fretted about it for days and then I finally went in and told the manager guys that I was short $10, and they checked their weekly tally and found they’d come up $9-and-something over for the week, and they told me that was really unusual so they thought the money must be mine, and they gave me the $9. That was one of the nicest things anyone has ever done for me. And that is why I was so unhappy  when I heard that Coliseum Books had filed for bankruptcy. I don’t think my $9 was responsible, but I can’t figure what was. They seem pretty busy whenever I’m in there, which is just about every day, Monday through Friday. But lately I’ve noticed some changes: First, the shelves started to seem a little empty, and then the shelves started to disappear. Now there’s an empty area at the back of the store that gets larger and emptier every week. This year I’m going to try to buy as many Christmas presents as I can at Coliseum—not that I think that will save them, but maybe it will help a little bit with their debts. And I sure hope those guys get new jobs somewhere; they were very good to me.

November 24, 2006

Tina, The Swedish chef (video)

Tina190 Tina Nordström, the ever energic tv-chef from Sweden shows us how to perk up with some special dessert... (YouTube) The essential word to know is kola [kohhlawh]. Alas, Tina speaks only Swedish. To compensate, here is Swedish tv-personalities Ander & Måns doing a rap in english (YouTube)

And from an industry often associated with this dessert; we give you this video (.mov/4mb) a golden web-oldie.

November 18, 2006

The Greatest (and Goriest) Industrial Film Ever (Video)

Klaus5In the greatest industrial film of all time, Klaus the Forklift Operator cuts off the hands of one co-worker, decapitates another, drops a knife on the head of a third, impales two and slices another in half. Twice. Oh, it's in German. It takes a while for the plot to get going, but once it does, the blood and safety tips flow like a river: download mpeg video, 17 megs, or youtube it.

November 03, 2006

Let's Go Have a Record Fair

4 Here is a short film (3.8mb mpeg) of WFMU Volunteer Director Scott Williams and WFMU Special Events Director Mike Lupica doing some heavy lifting yesterday afternoon in preparation for the 2006 WFMU Record Fair.  Good work, gents.

Oh, and hey - The Record Fair starts today and runs through Sunday at the Metropolitan Pavilion, 125 W. 18th St in New York City.  For more details, hie thee to this page, which lists hours, directions, special events, and more.   Hope to see you there!

September 01, 2006

How To Play Asteroids

Stuff0001Hey, it's the Friday before Labor Day! For all the poor souls stuck at work this  afternoon, here is an instructional, hypnotic, short film* (23MB) to help you kill the time until you can get out and savor those last drops of summer.   

Remember these things:

a) Like gigantic slow zombies made of rock, Asteroids are the enemy.  So are those flying saucers - they're not friendly E.T.'s collecting plants throughout the galaxy:  they are slathering tentacled beasts and they are firing at you.  Destroy them all.

b) The best offense is a good defense.  As a back-up plan, another good offense is to not stop shooting. 

c) Keeping your ship of death in the center of the screen is part of a good defense.  Staying stationary and in the middle lets you worry about one less variable when things get hectic, and gives you the advantage of what The Art of War calls The Ground of Intersecting Highways: "He who occupies it first has most of the Empire at his command." 

d) Finally, the hyperspace button is useless, at best, and fatal, at worst, especially if you accidentally hit the button while dozens of rocks are whizzing around.  Avoid using it at all costs.

Feeling shooty?  Want to play?  Then hie your time-wasting butt over here, already.  Unlike WFMU's beloved juego de arcada, the online version is in English, and assumes that one actually cares whether they can see the entire screen or not.  But don't let that put you off.  You've been primed.  Go get 'em, tiger!

August 01, 2006

Summertime at the Magic Factory

Two tell-all shots from around the office today that perfectly illustrate life at the Magic Factory in the midst of 110 degree heat, coupled with an air conditioner that's on the fritz.
Station_to_station_002_1 Station_to_station_005

July 13, 2006

Your Semi-Annual Employee Review

{un hommage à Al Jaffee, renowned smart-ass}

Pleasence 1. As you understand them, what are your duties/responsibilities with the company?

-Maximize usage of "mental health" days
-Come in early, stay late, never see family
-Know what all of our clients and co-workers are up to at any given moment; have a ready answer for any random question you might ask

2. Have the past 6 months been good/bad/satisfactory, and why?

-Satisfactory, breaking into widespread good whenever you leave the office
-Good, compared to 6 months at Abu Ghraib with Joan and Melissa Rivers
-Bad, considering that I'm actually expected to show up—I got into organized crime for this?

Robot_3 3. What can we do to make the processes of your department run more smoothly?

-Stop bugging me
-Play round-the-clock ragga breakcore streaming radio station
-Replace rest of staff with sexy female robots

4. What sort of training would help you to perform your job more efficiently?

-Ninja training
-Train me to tolerate a steady stream of gross incompetence and inefficiency
-Train me to beat the odds at Atlantic City

5. What about advancement?  Where do you see yourself 1-5 years down the road?

-In jail for killing all of you
-Winning the lottery and getting the hell out of here
-I'd take your position, but you so enjoy the taste of client ass, I'd hate to take that away from you

June 01, 2006

Sites for Sore Eyes

Nasa Employees Smokin' Crack
Or perhaps just overexposing themselves to some of WFMU's more experimental programs? Click on "Play Video", turn up your speakers, and begin your descent.

Start Your Own Religion
And if you're a successful guru, you could earn $5000, the adoration of the masses, and have a documentary made about you.

Never Work Again, Ever
A real-time, worldwide sketchpad that's as fun to contribute to as it is to just watch. Any similarities between what you see here and what you see on the restroom walls at Port Authority are sadly telling of the IQ of your average humanoid.

Great Character Actors
Badly designed relic-like webpage, but amusing from the "I need to learn everything about Walter Brennan in five minutes" vantage point. And give it up for Ed Begley Sr.?

Ten Things I Hate About Commandments
Youtube link to a hilarious re-cut for the preview of Charlton Heston's "Ten Commandments". Of the main character Moses, this begs the question: Can a Zero be a Hero?

How to Pirate a Vinyl LP
And subsequently bring the music industry to its knees. Ooops, too late!

Tribute City
A worldwide index of tribute bands. Favorites include Abbalanche, The Clashed, and Pete Loaf. Much to our collective surprise, there doesn't seem to be a YES tribute band called "Yeah", but there will be soon, damnit.

Continue reading "Sites for Sore Eyes" »

May 25, 2006



Guilty! Guilty! Guilty! Guilty! Guilty! Guilty! Guilty! Guilty! Guilty! Guilty! Guilty! (mp3s)

Enron Voicemail (thanks Bob B!)

March 28, 2006

Lunch Minutes for 3.28.06

What follows are the lunch minutes for today, March 28th, 2006. This is only a bullet-pointed summary ofLunch the lunch table conversation that ensued today at WFMU and reading it is not considered a suitable substitute for actually eating a lunch of your own.

Attendance: Those present for today's lunch meeting were as follows: Liz Berg, Ken Freedman, Brian Turner, Bill Zurat, Scott Williams, and myself.

Food: Brian had a "hoagie"-styled steak sandwich, wrapped in multiple layers of paper which were peeled back gradually, revealing the meaty goodness within. (See picture, right.) Scott, Liz, and I ordered takeout from a local Japanese place called "Nutty Handjob's II", but the delivery guy screwed up the order -- The beginning of a comical chain of events which eventually benefitted us in the form of an extra tray of sushi. This unexpected food was given to Bill, as he found it more enticing than the frozen dinner he'd begun to prepare. Ken ate lasagna, as usual.

Themes: Although many conversational avenues were explored today, the general topic of discussion was Heavy Metal culture, through which the following points were explored:

Continue reading "Lunch Minutes for 3.28.06" »

March 22, 2006

Why I Got Fired From Apple Computer (video)

AppletongueErik Ott, a customer service rep at Apple Computer was fired two days after performing this love ode to a fellow Fed Ex rep at the annual Apple employee's talent show. Fortunately Ott captured his performance on tape, as well as the performances of some of his ex-coworkers: [download video, 10 mb, mpeg file or stream it from google here]

Ott's main crime (besides performing under the name Big Poppa E) appears to have been joking about leaving Apple customers languishing on hold while flirting with the sweet Fed Ex lady. It apparently left an Apple VP all agog, and two days later, Ott was out of a job. Thanks Barrett!

March 03, 2006

This Week in Sex: Call Me

Girl_phoneI've got 800-989-9368 on speed dial, and I'm calling the station regularly to make my marathon pledges. When I say I'm "staffer Amanda," there is usually a pause. The phone room volunteer says, "Are you the Amanda with the dirty blo--", and I cut them off, because I am not dirty. The stuff I link to is dirty, but I went to mass on Ash Wednesday. So after we clear that up, I put down my money and make up some comment to be read on the air. When I called in the other morning, the phone room was loud, and the volunteer couldn't hear what I was saying. I was at work, where I try to keep my dirty blog business to myself. So finally I crawled under my desk and shouted, "Tell Scott that DIRTY BLOGGER AMANDA SAYS, 'IF LOVING SCOTT IS WRONG, I DON'T WANNA BE RIGHT!'" When I crawled out, my coworker was looking at me funny and said, "What was that about?" I was thinking, "None of your fucking business, asswipe," but since I am not dirty, I kept it to myself. (ASSWIPE.)

(P.S. I'll be kicking around the phone room during Greasy Kids Stuff on Saturday, March 4, 10 am-12 noon. On Sunday, March 5, I'll be co-hosting Gaylord's show, 5-7 pm. You'll be surprised how un-dirty I can talk. Call up and say hi. And get in on the pledging fun.)

Squeezy kid stuff.
Don't do the nipple twisting crime if you can't do the nipple twisting time. "A teen who pinched and twisted another boy's nipple while standing in line at a deli has been sentenced to four days in juvenile detention because he refused to write a letter that explained his actions." He's already paid a $67 fine and done three days of community service, but he's not writing a letter to the guy (asswipe) who tattled on him.

Good bra fences make bad neighbors.

Brafence_1A New Zealand man is resisting demands to take down hundreds of women's bras strung on his farm's fence, according to a Local 6 News report. For years, women returning from a pub in the nearby town of Wanaka have stopped at the fence and removed their bras. A local sheep farmer, John Lee, has become the unofficial guardian of the site.

"They have got a magic quality about them, bras," Lee said. "For me, they have all my life."

Lee defended the bra-adorned fence, saying 90 percent of letters he receives about it (like the magical bras) are supportive.

Our Bucket runneth over. There's a new addition to the Bucket of Smut, the $700+ worth of prizes available to anyone who pledges $65 or more to any WFMU show and also emails amanda (at) wfmu (dot) org to get in the running. This is a freebie, folks. You already gave, so throw your hat in the ring. Details here.

Continue reading "This Week in Sex: Call Me" »

February 27, 2006

What's New for the 2006 WFMU Marathon?

Well that's a loaded question. What do you think we've been doing since last March, sitting around pickin' our scabs?Wfmu_map Nope, not a chance. You all know us as a station just teeming with hornblowers, seemingly always on standby to tout our expansion of what the tired old FM band has to offer. Fair 'enough. But keeeee-rist, have you seen the new WFMU Marathon Map that Kenzo whipped up for us?? WFMU has always thought of itself as a community radio station, but the advent of the internet (and subsequent goodies like programming archives, online playlists, Google Earth, webstreams, and more) have blown the doors wide open for just how big or small that community can be.

For this marathon, anyone who makesPledge_main_2006_big an online pledge will generate a new, anonymous pinpoint on the map (with an optional comment), so you'll be able to see just how many other WFMU listeners are out there and (roughly) what far off and exotic locales they inhabit. You say you love The Reggae Schoolroom? So does someone in São Paulo, Brazil! Now you know to make sure you wear your WFMU shirt on your next trip. Our new one for this marathon, available for pledges of $45 and higher, is the Dr. Phrankenshop designed masterpiece seen here (right), and bares that most direct of of imperatives: Eat Flaming Death Fascist Media Pigs! Catchy, huh? A bit extreme, maybe? Well, subtlety is someone else's business, especially nowadays. The $45 pledge will not only have you dressed to kill, but equip you with postcards (also designed by the mysterious Dr. Phrankenshop) to write home with on your travels. Dig the lovely designs: Postcard 1 ||| Postcard 2  ||| Sticker and Postcard Assortment

Yeah, yeah, you say. Anybody can make t-shirts and postcards... How about some MP3s?

How about 'em, indeed...

Continue reading "What's New for the 2006 WFMU Marathon?" »

Yo La Tengo Performs Live, and Other Special Marathon Programming

Yo_la_surferWFMU is proud to welcome Yo La Tengo back to our airwaves on March 7th at 8 PM for their annual covers-for-pledges throwdown, as much a part of WFMU Marathon Tradition as the soaking of Andy Breckman and the consuming of questionably old whitefish salad from the JM in the AM breakfast table. The band will be hosted by Gaylord Fields and Tom Scharpling, who'll solicit the listeneing audiences to issue a cover song challenge to the band along with their pledge. This performance will mark the return of the WFMU WebCam, so you'll be able to tune in and watch the delirium unfold from anywhere in the world with a good internet hookup. Past years have seen the band perform numbers by The Who, Beat Happening, Replacements, Iggy & the Stooges, Boz Scaggs, and more! YOU can add your favorite to the list by pledging during the show at 1-800-989-9368 or on our online pledge page. Wow!
That fearsome webcam will be seeing a whole lot more in the way of action this marathon, too. On March 8th at 6 PM for Seven Second Delay's annual twirling of the wheel o' fate (which last year resulted in a bona fide 'whirlie' being administered not 20 feet from where I am currently typing. Don't know what a whirlie is? Don't feel bad: I didn't either, and I too went to college.) We'll also be web-camming the Sinner's Crossroads particular brand of redemption on March 9th at 7 PM, the Listener Hour on March 11th at 9 AM, and the grand-daddy throwdown finale of this whole festival of fundraising, The WFMU Marathon Finale featuring the Hoof n' Mouth Sinfonia beginning March 12th at 7 PM. (At which time you will either thrill or be utterly cold-cocked at the sights and sounds of your favorite (drunk) WFMU DJs soiling themselves to the classics while backed up by a live karaoke band! -- You will be tired at work on Monday.) Watch WFMU's homepage for the webcam link when each of the above programs go live. And check out the webcam schedule to keep tabs on any late additions!

February 12, 2006

Snowy Day at WFMU

Wfmu_snowyHere's a shot of the outside of WFMU's Jersey City studios taken earlier today, before DJ Tamar rolled through in her mighty Ford Bronco with hydraulic plow, clearing the parking lot for all the DJs who'll be following her.

Yep, for those of you keeping tabs on us from outside the northeast United States, WFMU-country is at the tail-end of getting socked by the blizzard that the rest of you are just watching clips of on CNN. Roads in the NYC metro area are a mess, and most public transportation is on the fritz (including PATH trains, which many of our DJs use to get back and forth between Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Magic Factory), and the snow doesn't seem to be letting up any time soon. Fantastic.

I managed to get here shortly after noon today, and found Ravel bravely holding down the airwaves for his Reggae Schoolroom fill-in. Glen Jones, stranded on a frozen PATH train somewhere between Harrison and Jersey City, was unable to make it in, and a bunch of other regularly scheduled programs will be falling into the able hands of our army of fill-in DJs for the remainder of the storm. You can catch the archives of all the recent fill-ins at the bottom of this page.

Times like this always remind me of classic tales from WFMU's past, especially the one which involved Stork, erstwhile host of the fabled Stork Club program, staying on the air for days on end when a blizzard buried our former East Orange studios under a blanket of toxic Jersey snow, and prevented any other staffers from traveling to relieve him of radio duties. Sadly, this all took place before the era of archiving. Anyone got tape?

Finally, here's a snow-related MP3, which tradition clearly dictates can only be wheeled out on days like this. Brrrrr. The school... She is closed... It is a snowy day. [Download MP3]

February 02, 2006

The WFMU Marathon is Coming!

Marathon_graph_1 The harbingers are always the same. The leaves fall from the trees, the skies turn grey, the song of the beached whale and the drunk wino grows silent, and then, without warning... The Annual WFMU Marathon seizes your heart, mind, wallet, and bandwidth! Yes indeed, get ready to surrender your expectations of decency at the door for this tradition of unmitigated desperation and indignity! For two weeks, WFMU listeners and staffers alike magically transform the mundane idea of fundraising into the jewel in the crown of a year's worth of broadcasting. From February 27th through March 12th, WFMU will ask for your financial support in whatever amount you can muster so that we may continue to bring you exactly the sort of aural delirium that you've grown to expect from entities like this blog, our archives, our On The Download page, and most of all, our audio streams and FM signals -- all of which would come to a grinding halt without the support of the good-hearted citizens of the world. (You, I mean.)

And of course, we reward you substantially for your generosity. In the coming weeks, everyone on WFMU's mailing list will be receiving our pre-marathon brochure which outlines the various pledge levels and the outstanding amounts of unique swag that each level entitles you to. If you don't find one in your mailbox, don't sweat it -- You can still make an online or telephone pledge at any time during the 'thon, and be qualified to win zillions of prizes that our DJs will be offering as bait. Of course, that's inbetween all the stunts, desperate pleas, drunken monologues from volunteers, Yo La Tengo's annual live broadcast (slated for the evening of March 7th), unhealthy amounts of whitefish salad, webcam horseplay, MP3s from our fabled DJ premiums, and the icing on the broadcast cake -- drunken, singing DJs fronting the Hoof n' Mouth Sinfonia! (You can download and watch videos of all of last years intoxicating performances here.)

So get ready! It's gonna be a broadcast blast for the ages that touches the lives and soils the reputations of all who witness or participate!

January 11, 2006

Made Out of Babies

Made_babies2_1 Regular WFMU listeners are no doubt aware that many great many bands blow through our hallowed halls on a weekly basis, sometimes playing live on the air right then and there, and sometimes recording for a future broadcast. It's not an uncommon sight to find the office staff slacking off in the name of checking out the racket in our 4th floor's live music room, and most recently, a tremendous rumbling was made by Brooklyn's finest metal/noise/screamo ensemble, Made Out of Babies.

Yep, with a hot record on the fine Neurot label (also home to Oxbow and Enablers, who've also made recent live appearances on FMU) and with one of the most fantastically maniacal vocalists any of us have faced in eons, Made Out of Babies definitely commanded our attention on the afternoon they dropped in. Here's a video clip (.wmv file, 5 megs) of the song "Herculoid", from the band's appearance on Diane's Kamikaze Fun Machine. You can see the playlist for the show here, and listen to the entire set in Real Player or MP3, too. European WFMU fans take note that Made Out of Babies will be on your side of the puddle for much of February and March, so make sure you show up. I'd be hard pressed to think of a better way to get well acquainted with the rear wall of a rock club.

November 21, 2005

Blubber Chicken and Middle-Class Pie

Hello, everybody—nice seeing you again.

HhelperI was reading a social history of housework, because that's the kind of thing I do for fun, and in the chapter on cooking the author said that now that a whole generation has grown up eating Hamburger Helper, that's what Americans think home cooking is. They associate a good, home-cooked meal with Mom dumping the contents of a box into a pan and mushing it up with some ground beef. This made me feel very un-American, because I'd never eaten Hamburger Helper in my life. Then one night I happened to have a pound of ground beef in the Kelvinator, and it was a night Sluggo wasn't going to be home for dinner, so I decided to experiment. I walked to the store and, mirabile dictu, Hamburger Helper was on sale that week. There were a lot of flavors; I hadn't expected that. I didn't know which was the correct, all-American flavor to get, but there were empty spaces on the shelf so I figured probably the "regular" flavor was already sold out. I wanted to do my experiment, but I wasn't so committed to it that I was willing to get a raincheck and another pound of ground beef the following week, so I finally chose "Oriental" because its name seemed more politically incorrect, and therefore more all-American, than "Stroganoff."

ChickenWell, it was dreadful. The predominant flavor was salt, apparently as an attempt to disguise the bizarre chemical flavors of the other ingredients. I like salt—I sometimes snack on sea salt straight from the box—but Hamburger Helper was too salty for me. I am sorry for the Americans who eat this stuff, but on the other hand I'm not a foodie, either. Foodie food is peculiar in its own way. For instance, foodies are responsible for blubber chicken. For hundreds of years, American cookbooks have advised folks to roast a chicken by letting it sit in a 350-degree oven for an hour or two, depending on the weight of the bird. It was delicious, and it was fool-proof—but unfortunately it wasn’t foodie-proof. Pick up any new-fangled foodie cookbook, and you’ll discover that you should be putting your chicken in a 500-degree oven for a while, and then lowering the temperature for another while, and then you will wind up with a nasty, undercooked, blubbery bird which apparently you are supposed to pretend to enjoy because if you don’t you are an unsophisticated rube who only wants your food to taste good.

Continue reading "Blubber Chicken and Middle-Class Pie" »

November 17, 2005

Poor Christmas

XmasI have been poor most of my life. Not poor as in, “we have to cut back on the cleaning lady’s days,” but poor like being passed around from one relative to another to live, and wearing other kids’ used clothes, and going an entire north-Midwest winter with no winter coat because nobody noticed I didn’t have one. I don’t remember ever being hungry then, but I do remember being cold; I cried from the cold sometimes.

I worked hard in school so I could get a scholarship to college, because I knew that was the only way I’d ever get out. I got a full scholarship to a school in the Pacific Northwest. The winters were warmer there, so my lack of a winter coat didn’t matter so much. I arrived at college with my entire wardrobe: two sweaters, two pairs of jeans, underwear, socks, a pair of clogs, and a jacket. I don’t remember being cold there, but sometimes I was hungry. I stood in the cafeteria where the other kids emptied their trays and took the food they didn’t want. I remember when the price of a box of saltine crackers went up a nickel at the local store, because that meant I couldn’t afford them any more. Then my little sister came to live with me. One of the happiest days of my life was the day we qualified for foodstamps.

LilbrooOne year I started saving at the start of the school year, and by Christmas I had $6.00. I had three people I had to get gifts for, so I used the money to buy cheap little address books at a 99-cent store and some fabric scraps, and I covered the books with the fabric and decorated them and wrapped them in paper I drew myself. It wasn’t so bad, really. I think I have a naturally sunny nature that probably would have come out more if my life hadn’t been so hard when I was young, and that year I thought, “Well, at least I’ll never have a Christmas as poor as this one. Every Christmas from now on will be better than this.” But I was wrong. This year is worse.

Continue reading "Poor Christmas" »

November 16, 2005

A Fatal Exception

Rhapsody in BlueRelax.  Relax.  Have a chicory.

MP3 by Jim

November 10, 2005

Who Really Cares...

Momsbox_1...about correct grammar, spelling and punctuation?  As someone who has pursued a career as a proofreader and copy editor for almost 20 years, I consider myself part of that withering breed of cranks who do care, but are at the same time aware we're fighting a losing battle.

The publishing and news media industries, for the most part, do not pay their editors a living wage (it's more of a live-at-home wage), and why should they, with all the chuckleheads out there nursing Jimmy Olsen dreams?  As a result, newspapers, magazines, Web pages and even books in print are riddled with typos, misused punctuation and poorly written sentences.  Fightbono_2Just look at this doozy (pictured) I found on CNN.com a while back—sentences like this are commonplace on CNN, MSN and other Web media outlets.

If you want to make a living wage as an editor, you'll most likely need to go to work for THE MAN, in one of several "evil" corporate industries such as law, finance, pharmaceuticals or healthcare.  These industries don't generally care about correctness, either.  They care only inasmuch as it affects their bottom line, i.e., if something in print isn't as it should be, they could be fined, be sued, or even (gasp!) lose an important client.  (Don't even get me started on Continuing Medical Education, a wholly corporate-funded scam, and the subject of another blog post for another time.)

So who really cares?  Lynne Truss does.  Truss expanded her well-received BBC Radio 4 series, Cutting a Dash, into the best selling book Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation.  Anyone with even the slightest reverence for correct punctuation usage and grammar will find this a laugh-out-loud read.  To demonstrate the strength of her convictions, upon the opening of the film Two Weeks Notice, Ms. Truss went to Leicester Square with a six-inch apostrophe mounted on a stick, holding it strategically aloft so that, for a time at least, "Weeks" carried its proper possessive.

Most passersby told Truss to "get a life."  The sting of this comment, in this context, has been felt at one time or another by all intrusive, stickler-types like myself.  My own wife, bless her, has weathered years of my "pronunciation tips," and never once told me to "get a life."  But just try telling someone to "get a life" as they blab on about last night's NFL spectacle, the "tribal council" on Survivor, or Lindsay Lohan's drunken escapades.  These things, apparently, are more legitimate stuff of which to make up a life than our glorious and complex written language.

Continue reading "Who Really Cares..." »

October 31, 2005

Things to Think and Boo

Hello, Everybody—Nice seeing you again.
I always advise my Listeners to check the business news sections of web sites or the newspapers, because how else are you going to find out what’s really going on? For instance, how else would we know that the haunted house business is not what it used to be?

Hw_magFirst off, who even knew it was a business? Well, it is. There are a couple of trade magazines called—surprise!—“Haunted House Magazine” and “HauntWorld” (“the ONLY haunted house magazine for professionals!”) There is a haunted house industry association, and haunted house trade shows where haunted house industry professionals can meet with haunted house vendors. But unfortunately it’s not the business it used to be. All those old houses are being seized under the new eminent domain rulings, and there’s all those new safety regulations, and the price of liability insurance keeps going up, and it’s getting hard for a simple animatronic zombie entrepreneur to scare up a few bucks. So don’t quit your dayjob.

I was trying to think of something really scary to leave leave you with this Halloween, and here it is:

When asked if she approved of the Park Slope Pavilion movie theater’s policy of searching the bags of all patrons. Ms. Bridget O’Connor said, “Oh, definitely, I hope they continue. It puts your mind at ease. It might take a couple extra seconds, but what doesn’t?”

Well, EXACTLY. What doesn’t?

Thanks for taking a couple extra seconds to read my blog entry, and happy Halloween.

September 23, 2005

This Week in Sex: Sex Ed

Sex isn't all fun and games, you know. Actually, it's mostly no fun and games. Which is why we bring you the Back to School edition of This Week in Sex. Take your hands out of your pockets and get learning, Junior.

Inthebeg1937_00150000_3Mommy, Daddy, where did the controversy about sexual education come from? Apparently, from this boring 1947 film. You can watch the movie, or just look at the thumbnails featuring a deeply suspicious dad. I prefer the Department of Agriculture sex ed film that takes the sex Ed Wood approach: if you like stock footage, a swelling soundtrack, and rabbit C-sections, this is the film for you.

Movie Club. If you just want to watch something dirty, which I know you do, there are about a kajillion other old  films on the Internet Archive, plus a handy subject index. They have non-sex stuff, too. Actually, it's mostly non-sex stuff. I just don't pay attention to it.

Biology 101. What's inside your boobs? I'm not really sure, but it's disturbingly glowy.

Career Counseling. You say you want to be in radio, but the results of your assessment test say you would make a great Hooters Girl. Congratulations!  Please take your Suntan-colored pantyhose and a copy of your Hooters Handbook, and remember that being sexually harassed is part of the job. (The pantyhose and the sexual harassment parts are just like radio, so don't be too disappointed.)

Linguistics. This guy spent a whole lotta time researching and thinking and writing about about the word cunt. (Whereas I just spent a whole lotta time watching the cunt circus.)

Science Fair. "How many angels fit on the head of a pin?" is a question for theologians, but "How many condoms fit on the head of a penis?" is one we can really wrap our hands around. And by "we" I mean the Science Project geeks, who I hope keep up the good work. A+.

RitapicCosmology. If you think God is being a big dick with this weather, you're right. Rita looks like a big phallus. But if you think Katrina looks like a big fetus, and that means the storm is God's way of punishing us, you're wrong. Plus you're being a big dick.

Community Service. It's not porn, it's charity: make a donation to Katrina relief and see pictures of boobs in the virtual Mardi Gras that is Boobs4BourbonSt. You can donate boobs or money, or both. [via]

P.S. I double-dare you not to look at pets in uniform. (P.P.S. Now I know what I'm getting DJ Bronwyn for Christmas! Don't tell.) [via]

Thanks for the random acts of smut, Station Manager Ken.


September 19, 2005

The Card Man

Cardman1_1Hello, Everybody--Nice seeing you again.

One day, years ago, I was walking down Madison Avenue on lunch break from my dayjob at a law firm. I was on the west side of the street between 39th and 40th, when a chubby little man with a bad haircut, wearing an ill-fitting, brown blazer, handed me a business card as he walked past. The card had the name of some employment agency on it, and I tossed it into the next trashcan I came to.

A few months later, he did it again. I was on lunch break, on Madison, near the spot where I saw him before, and he handed me the same card. “What is this?” I asked.

He looked a little startled when I spoke to him. “It’s about a job,” he said.

“What kind of job?”

The question seemed to make him uncomfortable. “You have to call,” he said, sidling away.

When I got back to my office, I did call. A woman answered. “Hi,” I said. “A gentleman gave me your card and suggested I call about a job.”

“You’ll have to come in to the office, “ said the woman.

“What kind of jobs do you have?” I asked. “Are you a temp agency?”

“I can’t talk about it on the phone,” she said. “You have to come in and see us.” Of course, I never did.

Continue reading "The Card Man" »

August 04, 2005

How To Break Up With Your Bad, Scary Boss

I received a message last week from a former co-worker, a truly sweet, humane and talented woman, requesting my advice.  She was poised to give notice of her resignation to her boss, a complex character whom I know all too well, as I gave him my own resignation notice last fall after almost four grueling years of employment.  Now lots of people hate their jobs, but this place, and this man, were no joke.  I performed several burning parchment rituals over the years in an unsuccessful attempt to quash or at least diminish this fucker's psychological power over all of us.  But his will was more iron than mine at the time, and may still be.

I got my ass out of there, and the task before me now was to help my dear friend extricate herself with a minimum of misery and anxiety surrounding the proceedings.  I felt that my response to her was worthy of a blog post, and might perhaps be of help to someone else in the Web universe.

(Note that all names (except mine) have been completely changed to protect all parties from possible legal repercussions.)

Dear Friend,

First of all, congratulations.  I personally hate working, so actually looking for work runs counter to my nature, though sometimes it must be done.

"Selling yourself," seeming like a "people person" and a "self-starter," are all activities that threaten to make sane, sensitive, artistic folks like us spontaneously combust in anguish.  So good show, you got out there and you found something.

Continue reading "How To Break Up With Your Bad, Scary Boss" »

August 01, 2005

The Dog With No Nose

Hello, Everybody—nice seeing you again.
I have a dayjob at a dog magazine, and when I first started there people kept telling me about the dog with no nose. They said he lived somewhere in the neighborhood of our office, and that occasionally they would see him outside being walked. As an extremely gullible person, I am always a little afraid of being pranked, and for a long while I thought this was probably just some kind of initiation trick, like going to camp as a kid and being sent on a snipe hunt or when the other production staff at the Village Voice used to threaten me with tales of Gauzehead, the dreaded specter of Deadline Doom. I did actually see Gauzehead once, and he was truly terrifying. He also had an uncanny resemblance to Andrea, the drummer for the Fuzztones,
but I’m sure that was just a coincidence.

Anyway, one day I went out for lunch very late, later than usual. I was talking on my cell phone to DJ Amanda, when I saw him—The Dog with No Nose. It is almost impossible to describe what he looks like, because it’s just so wrong. He’s a nice old Golden-Retriever-looking fella who’s missing the top front half of his face. His tongue laps out periodically as if he’s trying to smell things with it like a snake. He shuffles along the street leaving a wake of double-takes and horrified looks from the people he passes. “Omigod!” I hissed into the phone. “It’s The Dog With No Nose!” “Oh, I’ve seen him,” Amanda replied. It turned out she knew all about him, having run into him once when she took her Puli , Dodger, to the Animal Medical Center in Manhattan.
This would seem to confirm some of our office speculation that The Dog With No Nose lost his nose due to some awful accident or maybe an illness, dog nose cancer or something. Dogs are not vain, so the ghastly disfigurement probably doesn’t worry him, but how does he get along without the sense of smell that is so important to dogs? Was his nose removed to save his life, and was that a kindness or not, given the circumstances?

I have been thinking a lot about The Dog With No Nose lately, since my skin cancer’s come back all across the tip of my nose and a little spot on my upper lip. I’m just finishing my fourth week of chemo, and my nose is coming off in hunks. I realize now I’ve always been rather fond of my nose. I stare at it in the mirror and suddenly find it perfectly adorable. I know I’m going to miss it if they have to take it off. Having been through cancer twice before myself, and having been the friend or relative of a number of other people who have had other types of cancers, I know it’s difficult sometimes for well-meaning friends to know what to say or do. Of course, everyone is different in their reaction to serious illness, but here are a few things I’d like my friends to keep in mind, and maybe other folks would find these helpful as well:

1. Please don’t be afraid to ask how I’m doing. I want to know you care about that. But please don’t call me at work and ask for the full report while I’m sitting in a cubicle. E-mail is probably the best way to contact me, because even when I’m home I may be tired or may not feel like talking right that moment about being sick. Send me an e-mail and tell me you’re thinking of me. Tell me I can call you anytime if I feel like talking. Think of something fun we can do together that doesn’t involve my sitting in direct sunshine. Please don’t disappear from my life just because you’re afraid you’ll say the wrong thing. Telling me you care about me is always appropriate.

2. Please be optimistic, but don’t tell me your elderly uncle had skin cancer and the doctor just scraped it off and he was fine. I really hate it when people act like skin cancer is baby beginner training wheels cancer and not the “real thing.” I have already endured being told I was going to lose an eye from this. I have been through two major operations—one took four hours, and the other five hours, and I had to be conscious during both of them while pieces of my face were being removed. The left half of my face is so scarred up it looks like a hippie chick’s patchwork handbag. On the other hand, I don’t want to hear about how many people die from skin cancer every year, either. So this is tricky, I know. Maybe you can just concentrate on how lucky I am to live in New York, where there are so many great doctors to help me. There have been some terrific advances in treatment since I had my surgeries a few years ago--that’s a good thing to keep in mind, too.

3. Make me laugh. Send me a funny card, or a copy of the funniest book you’ve ever read. E-mail me a joke. Send me a DVD of a funny movie. If you’re SURE you know my sense of humor, you can even make jokes about my stupid illness. DJ Kelly told me that if I had to have some of my nose removed, she would donate tissue from her ass to replace it. This made me howl, because she knows her ass is a never-ending source of hilarity to me.

4. IF you can do it honestly, compliment me on some aspect of my appearance. Not only does my face look weird right now, but being sick makes me feel ugly. On the other hand, I’ve recently lost 22 pounds and I look pretty good. I just got a great haircut. Saying something nice would really boost my mood right now, if it’s sincere. We had a small electrical fire in our office last week, and the cutest fireman came to check it out. I said something flirtatious to him, and HE FLIRTED BACK. I can’t tell you how great that made me feel.

5. Pray for me. Scientists and experts have found that other people’s prayers have a positive effect on the recovery of sick people, even if the sick people don’t know they’re being prayed for. So please put in a good word for me with your deity of choice, or just picture me happy and healthy, flirting with some fireman, my adorable little nose intact. I’d really appreciate it.

Thanks for reading my blog entry, and may God bless.
-Bronwyn C.

July 13, 2005

Lunch Minutes for 7.13.05

Most organizations with any semblance of order keep minutes for all their meetings, both formal and informal. At WFMU, most of the meetings amongst the small office staff fall into the informal category, with proper station procedure, technical issues, programming matters, and related cultural phenomena frequently discussed at the lunch table while gobbling down inexpensive takeout food. What follows are the lunchtime minutes for today, July 13th, 2005.

Those present for this meeting were: Ken Freedman, Scott Williams, Megan Murphy, Liz Berg, myself, + volunteers Wendy, Greta, and Ed Word. Brian Turner, Moshik, and Bill Zurat were also present, but were forced to eat in the other room because of poor behavior at yesterday's meeting.

The menu: Most of us ordered from a local Asian place called Nutty Handjob's. A few non-believers either brought food from home or ordered slop from some other place that I can't necessarily endorse. In most cases, lunch was complemented by icy cold and delicious (i.e. "free") water.

More_hippiesThe topic of today's lunch discussion was hippies. (Yesterday, we talked about Oingo Boingo, so there is a logical progression evident at work here.) Here are some of the sub-categories of the hippie subject that were tackled this afternoon:

* The DJs on staff who either shy away from the hippie music, as opposed to those who embrace it warmly and cradle it to their bosom appreciatively.

Continue reading "Lunch Minutes for 7.13.05" »

July 01, 2005

WFMU's Amazing Floating LP

Russian_jazzAs much as we here at WFMU tend to reject characterizing ourselves as "nutty," "wacky," "boffo," "screwy," "batty," "balmy," "loony," "goofy," "jokey," "nutso," "waggish," "bonkers," "cuckoo," "harebrained," "zany," "daffy," "cockamamie" or otherwise anything even closely resembling a state of being "totally bananas," this can still be a pretty weird place to hang around. Case in point: WFMU's mysterious and now-legendary floating record album.

Yes, WFMU's alphabetically-arranged record library is not only home to some of the tools of our trade -- that trade being freeform radio -- it is also home to a genuinely nomadic record. A record that can not be filed alphabetically. A record that knows nothing about structure or boundaries and refuses to hemmed in by that whole limitations trip the other records and CDs are always trying to lay on it. Considered in this light, it is very much a microcosm of our mission here at WFMU. In another way, it's a corny Russian jazz record with a name I can't type out on this keyboard. What makes it truly unique, however, is that every time one of our DJs comes across it in the stacks, it is their duty to then refile it someplace else. Anyplace else.

As you can see by the detail of the jacket, this tradition dates back to 1990. No one around here will fess up to starting it, however... Even Irwin claimed not to know anything about it, and he constantly ribs me for being such a kid in comparison to his elder statesmanship at FMU. (He recently reasoned that he'd been into the band Grauzone (click to stream Real Audio) since "before [I] was born", which leads me to believe that Irwin thinks I am only 11 years old.)

But back to the matter at hand: Hokey Russian Jazz records. Here's an MP3 (right-click to download)  of the second song on side one, the title of which reads something that (in Russian) looks like "Mpncmotpn Aahr MactylIok", which according to one of those online translation programs means "Electric Pork Tuxedo". (Other songs on the record not available for download include "Aeebea" ("Asphalt"), "By Abte Aoepbl" ("Lick my Boots"), and "Xaomanhte B AaaoIihn" ("Marmalade and Heroin".)

Word on the street is that this hot combo's LP was released in a limited, hand-numbered run of only 800 copies (ours is #49). In order to secure yours, I'd suggest you soon start jockeying for position at our next Record Fair, to be held November 4th-6th in Manhattan. In the meantime, I'm heading downstairs to re-file the LP. I'm feeling drawn to somewhere between the Creedence records and the last RJD2 12"...

WFMU Yard Sale Wrap Up

WFMU's third un-annual Yard Sale was nothing short of a hoot and a vinyl huntin' dollah hollah! We Cartmachinecleared our pathetically overstuffed basement of thousands of dollar records, so as to make way for new donations, and we also unloaded our equipment closet of things like antique cart machines, mini-disc recorders, and a slightly water-damaged but otherwise workable Technics 1200 turntable, all for something south of five bucks apiece. If you didn't make it, you can either console yourself with the knowledge that our utterly legendary (and 200 times as big) Record & CD Fair will be back in effect on November 4th, 5th, and 6th, or you can listen (Real Audio) to the live edition of Seven Second Delay that was taped12 during the yard sale, during which Andy Breckman offered one minute of face time for the paltry sum of one dollar. Per minute. The wily OCDJ, who moonlights under the employ of Mr. Breckman, used his dollar wisely as you can see from this picture, in which he enjoys an uninterrupted 60 second Andy hug while Ken Freedman and Gaylord Fields look on. This was a particularly sly move on OCDJ's part -- there's no way Breckman can ever fire him now. You can check out more pix from the WFMU yard sale in this post, including one of Diane Kamikaze's amazing Egyptian Pharaoh skeleton guitar case, and another one of some dude with a mohawk buying it off her. (Thanks to Listener Max for the pic.)