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cgod  ·  1320 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Music Theory and White Supremacy  ·  

If you read the guys paper you would realize that he was writing about people and methods taught in a formal education setting and not even community college but some university and conservatory settings.

The video is watches like a sophomore persuasive essay reads. It throws a lot of shit at the wall and knows somethings going to stick for most people. I don't think it's a bad video, it's a sophomoric thought provoking exercise of some guys music channel.

    For over twenty years, music theory has tried to diversify with respect to race, yet the field today remains remarkably white, not only in terms of the people who practice music theory but also in the race of the composers and theorists whose work music theory privileges. In this paper, a critical-race examination of the field of music theory, I try to come to terms with why this is so.

There's enough here that the video doesn't really convey to lead to a lot of questions. When Mr. Ewell talks about "people who practice music theory" he's talking about a certain type of higher education instructor, he isn't talking about musicians or another large collection of music instructors who aren't a part of or allowed to join his guild. He isn't talking about the fact that Oscar Peterson took piano lessons from a guy who took piano lessons from Franz Liszt. He isn't examining if Duke Ellington, easily one of the ten great composers of his day, was a man confined by the chains of 18th century western harmonic theory.

He seems to suggest the popular music we like to listen to isn't a slave to western harmonic theory. It's a nice divorce which leaves a clean white playing field for a certain type of nearly dead White music to be excoriated and music theory to be tarred with original sin.

What do I know about music theory? Not a lot. I spent one year as a jazz studies major on saxophone at an inner city university that was rated as one of the better jazz studies schools in the nation. We studied music theory, mostly counter point, lots of Bach. I don't know what other music programs are like and I don't even know if the my school had a music program outside of the jazz program for education or ensemble playing. They did mention other music theory systems in brief but the focus was to produce musicians who might be able to make a living. You learned counter point to under stand harmonic structures and if you wanted to be able to feed yourself to write commercial music or write charts. I recall a brief mention that if you wanted to learn certain exotic non jazz centered theory a teacher could point you in a direction.

I'm sure the guy who taught theory was pretty slick at that shit from a jazz perspective. I wasn't around long enough to get to know him. I knew the two saxophone players that taught pretty well. The first guy could write out a 15 piece band chart in twenty minutes. His ability to write impromptu charts was astounding, he was a master of counterpoint in a jazz idiom. The other guy was George Saxophone Benson, he was an old bad ass and widely considered the best saxophone player in Detroit. He didn't take many students and his time was wasted on me. He was writing an analysis of John Coltrane's Giant Steps, the manuscript was inches thick. He tried to teach me a system of rhythmic theory that impressed me as being totally novel, shit I'd never seen, which he said wasn't widely known. He said if you came to grips with it all possible rhythm patters were easily understood. He was an old Black master of the his craft who was largely unimpressed with my grasp of 18th century western harmonic tradition because it meant that I was a lost cause and a poor vehicle to absorb the wit and wisdom of his own sophisticated craft. Was George Benson an uncle tom or was he a sophisticated intellect that absorbed parts of a framework established by generations of musicians with which he made his own unique creations?

Music theory was a tool at that school. You learned it to make a living and to make you more capable of creating art. While Blacks don't own jazz, it's largely an art created by the unique legacy of black culture and traditions.

I only mention these two guys because neither of them are part of Philip Ewell's guild. Both were masters of music theory in their specific musical discipline, both were most highly influenced in their art by black men were also music theory heavy weights in a music that was influenced by 18th century western harmonic traditions and by wide and diverse influences that ran parallel toward and away from 18th century western harmonic music.

The video braces itself against on a framework that is narrow discussion of guild politics, personnel and cannon with regards to race and slaps it up against music theory as a wide field. I think race and music theory is an interesting thing to think about and study but I think this video largely avoids it by doing a bait and switch that gets more awkward the more you look at what it leans on.

It's real hard to find videos of the two saxophonist I studied under because they had common names that were shared with more famous jazz musicians but I found one decent video of George Benson.

Trying to think about my feelings about this video and it's failure to come to terms with the incredibly sophisticated contributions to music theory made by POC in a non academic fashion, I became tempted to play game where I talked about fabulously talented black musicians that changed music and their backgrounds in 18th century western harmonic theory. I could play it for a while but how about an example.

Bernie Worrell was born in Long Branch, New Jersey, and grew up in Plainfield, New Jersey, where his family moved when he was eight. A musical prodigy, he began formal piano lessons by age three and wrote a concerto at age eight. He went on to study at the Juilliard School and received a degree from the New England Conservatory of Music in 1967. He then became a leg of the stool of Parliament/Funkadelic and did a lot of other shit that was a glorious celebration of Black music and played in the talking heads on the side. 18th century western harmonic music was a tool, not a prison for Worrell.

Is White 18th century German music embraced by racist assholes? I had no idea that it was but it makes sense and Ewell's essay convinces me that it and other boring music inspired by this very white branch of the musical tree is often a haven for white racist assholes.

Private instruction, community college classes, you tube videos and so much more are the elements of music theory instruction that are ignored in the video. Musician are not discussed at all unless they can be used to support the idea of music theory's racism. I'm sure there are endless interesting conversations to be had about race and music theory, I think this video hints at some of them while being a little slippery and not standing on ground firm enough to make any kind of real stand.

One of the most interesting comments on race and music made simply is Herbie Hancock's Water Melon Man.

Titled with a foul stereo type, it's a super tight sophisticated composition. The "Water Melon Man" is a powerful creator. The rhythms pulse with amazing syncopation (take that white 18th century composition, your rhythms are truly fucking boring). The instruments fit together but share little space harmonically or rhythmically. They stride forward together but don't cling to variations of theme or a shared beat, they are wildly diverse and funky. Amazing bits of improvisation are the cherry on top. Fuck your stereotype, see your Water Melon Man for what he is, a man of intellect, sophistication, discipline and talent.

bloo, this started as a comment to you and expanded, so there ya go.

One thing that always shocks me here, seeing a large swastika tattoo. My heart races and the type of guy who has one has always been very scary. I'm generally not a scared man and those guys scare the living shit out of me.

This is the only city I've lived in that I'm not surprised to see it, it's always surprising but it's no surprise if you can see what I mean.

Is the myth of Portlandia done now? I don't know, it was always a little bit true and mostly bullshit.

Hell of Proud Boy parade yesterday downtown. Why were the police unable to police them? It's cool, I know that answer already and black police chiefs don't amount to much when the rank and file has made up their minds. Will we see less of them or more now one proud boy lies dead? I've been waiting for someone to die, I figured a cop would tackle a kid into a fire hydrant and bash their brain in, I never in a million years imagined that it'd be Proud Boy.

There was a great block party two blocks from my house tonight. Three hundred or so people showed up. The block boarders a park, so it was pretty easy to social distance that many people. I'd say about 80% masked but many of the non masks put a pretty healthy amount of distance between their patch and the next groups. The crowd was about 50/50 Blacks and Whites. A food vendor sold brisket to at least a hundred people. The band played soul hits, every thing from Lauren hill to Zhane and they were smokin, great singers tight rhythm section. I guess our neighborhood pushed back the dark.

Did you see that the kid who identified Kyle Rittenhouse was seventeen year old Garrison (Teargas Proof) Davis? Young Garrison has been a front line journalist for the last 90 days of protests. kid has sucked a lot of gas and taken some blows. Don't tell me a seventeen year old can't be a journalist, this kids going places.

Most the racist are from out of town. You don't have to go far to find em. It seems like a pretty shitty state when you get to know it. There are few bastions of decency but for the most part it's somewhat backward and hateful.

Washington State and Idaho are more than competitive. One odd thing I've been more fully conceptualizing is that everywhere has mean backwards racists but they come in different flavors. They have different cultures and their mean spirited evil manifests differently.

This town is tense. I haven't had this many people cry at the counter since Trump was elected. I think the Proud Boy killing shook people today, on top of COVID, and the election and the kids not going back to school next week and what a shit ass deal kids are about to get. The moms are weepy and scared.

I'll take the time to read that piece, I'm shook today and I really can't atm. Robert Evans has a pretty good overview of why Oregon is in the running as the most racist state on his Behind the Bastards Podcast. Pretty decent podcast and Rob just had his hand broke by a Proud Boys baton last week when he was doing some journalism, lets not forget his hard work.

cgod  ·  1420 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: June 3, 2020  ·  

I reooened the shop this week.

It's good to see people again.

cgod  ·  1459 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: My Restaurant Was My Life for 20 Years. Does the World Need It Anymore?  ·  


There's nothing special to you about eating a good meal with good company? To me it's one of the best things in life.

I've been told that I should sign up for door dash or start delivering pounds of coffee to peoples houses while I'm shut down. I didn't open up the shop to make filthy lucre. If that's what I was in it for I could fine many ways to make more money with less work doing something else.

I don't want to stand behind a machine passing off drinks to an app slave all day. I won't wear a mask for 10 hours a day, just to have the privileged of at most three minutes business like human contact while you go in the one door and exit the other moving through tapped off squares on the floor.

My shop is a part of the neighborhood. It's the place where friendships, relationships, new businesses and public service projects are born.

It's friends who haven't seen each other in months having a chance encounter and kicking it for an hour on the picnic table.

It's really too many things to list and I'm sure it's things to people I barely know that they find important that I have no idea of.

Food is sacrament. You need it to live. Maybe this means nothing to you. Maybe food, it's enjoyment, the realization people have worked hard from soil to your cup to try and make it special just for you is of no importance, a cup at 7/11, McDonalds, or from Door Dash is as good as another.

I've noticed restaurants that start emphasizing app delivery get shitty within about six months. Their margins go down but the volume goes up. Your work harder for a little bit more money and a lot less fun. The owner touches less of what goes out the door, because the're too busy to be involved with all aspects as much as they used to be. The owner definitely has less contact with customers, cares less because it's hard to care when your main feed back is mostly the angry stares of app slaves who care for naught but time. Work isn't fun, if you can hire your way out of production you do. prices almost always go up in those first six months while quality goes down. Within a year I generally don't dine there anymore. There is a Thai place a block from my house, we used to ear there once a week, it's dead to me now but always has deliveries streaming in and out.

I don't want to live in app food world, just like I don't want to live in a cooperate food world. I haven't eaten in a Chilies type restaurant in over a decade. I have a weakness for McDonalds breakfast, I might get it once a month. I've ordered food by app exactly once in my life. If I'm going to sit at home I can make my self something to eat. If I go out I want my food to be intentional, made by someone who meant to be at this place at this time making the food they want to make, rockin whatever tunes they wanted to rock, in an environment they thought would be conducive to the experience.

Maybe I'm shallow, but eating other peoples food while I enjoy the company of the people I love and find interesting is close to one of my favorite things in life.

It's possible I am not understanding your snark. If I am understanding it than your life sounds pretty fucking sad to me but we are different people who value different things. I hope the world still NEEDS to share good food with good company.

cgod  ·  1535 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pro-Life” Activist Does Damage Control After Whining About Baby She “Saved”  ·  

I have immense respect for people who strongly oppose abortion and have adopted children who have been born with severe disadvantage.

I am pro-choice all the way.

I've known several people who have put their money where their mouth is and stepped up to care for a kid who is disabled or born with a drug addiiction. While I disagree with their pro-life position, I am overwhelmed by the goodness with which they hew to their beliefs.

Here we have a vapid bitch who would in no way support her beliefs with personal sacrifice.

Who fucking cares.

Are there hypocrites in every social movement?


Is this lady one of them?


Are there idiots who hold their pro-choice position based in nothing but their upbringing and peer group?


This kind of story is nothing but shitty sneering about how right one side is over the other based upon the worst kind of person who hold a certain position. It's the lowest kind of story that reduces the arguments of the other side to a grotesque cartoon. I loath it.

Is abortion murder?

Yes, it is, at least to some extent.

I am an advocate for the murder if the unborn in certain situations. I don't find it a completely comfortable position to assume.

Stories like this make it a lot more comfortable to take a position that should be carefully considered.

I find this post disgusting.

I'd really like to hear a response from lil who bumped this post or steve who I suspect holds some opinion on the subject in response to what I've said. I've thought a lot about it and how I feel about abortion and people who believe it should not be legal.

cgod  ·  1553 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: January 22, 2020  ·  x 2

A few years ago another coffee shop moved in three blocks from my shop. It pissed me off because I knew the numbers and we were going to be eating each others dinner to the extent that I was pretty sure that they wouldn't make it but that they would hurt my bottom line pretty bad.

It was a nice couple who opened it, they had a background in dance performance and were pretty thin on service industry experience. They had a nut roasting company in back of the shop and decided they would open a retail location for their nuts and open a cafe to help make the whole thing balance out. They had a nice big nut display. Their coffee was decent and they had FOOD! They had stuff like quiche and egg sandwiches and shit like that. Another thing they had that didn't were walls painted in mocha and espresso shades with a natural edged counter all cut from the same tree. I know many people thought I was doomed, it was a very nice counter. Friends said that I should start doing food to stay competitive (I just have bagels and pastry).

I think it wasn't long before they nice couple realized that nuts weren't a destination shopping attraction, the nut display dwindled to a few shelves but they reportedly sell a lot of nuts online and to fancy shops. They double downed on the food and became more ambitious. You could get a motherfucking breakfast there with potatoes eggs and toast on the weekend. Food margins are way shittier than coffee margins and it entails a whole bunch of work and forethought to keep the machine running. The two of them couldn't man the shop and keep the nuts flowing alone so they got employees.

I know my numbers and and could pretty well judge their costs in relation to how busy they were and what their prices were. They were right about FOOD bringing em in. They were a bit busier than I was but all that labor and the worsening margins meant that the return on the work wan't panning out. I knew baristas who worked for them and they said it was a shitty unhappy place to work. I'd go in for a cup of coffee and not see the owners working or see the owners and note their strained smiles and weary eyes.

On a sidebar, why don't I have FOOD! Food has shitty margins when you have to add an employee to give any kind of decent service. If I had food I'd have to work significantly harder to eek out a relatively small amount of extra profit. I also know that the thousandth time I scrapped cheese off a plate I'd go down to the basement and hang myself from the rafters. I suppose it mostly comes down to the fact that there is a value to happiness that a small increase in marginal profit and brow sweat can't make up for.

So, I kept my head down, donated to local causes and kept getting to know the people in my neighborhood better. Most importantly I made better coffee than the other guys, all I cared about was coffee and relationships. The other shop changed their hours about ten times in a year and a half trying to find the magic hours to bring in the most money and keep labor and work to a minimum. In the end they opened later than I did and closed earlier. I loved it.

One day the other shops roaster came in to pitch me on his wares.

He walked in, saw who I carried and said "Oh, you are carrying Courier!."

He had half a dozen bags of coffee in his arms.

"You aren't going to be interested in switching roasters, Joel is the guy that inspired me to go into coffee, he's a great guy and his coffee is amazing." He gave me a few single orgins and told me to look him up if Courier ever went out of business.

I kept my head down for a year and a half and waited for them to go out of business which they finally did. They said they had to quit for personal reasons, which may to some extent be true but when you aren't making any money or having any fun personal reasons are nagging.

They immediately sold the business to another nice couple. This couple also had a background in performance and little food experience. They really went all in at the FOOD! They tried it all and were good at very little of it. I had one of their bland $7 quiches and wondered that anyone would buy such a thing twice. One of my friends got and egg sandwich and tossed it out declaring that it tasted oddly of fish and tossed it in the garbage. This couple slowly worked their own shop less and less relying on expensive employees to cover more and more shifts.

Their employees were mostly unhappy and gave shitty service. I work my shop 6 days a week for about fifty six open hours. I have two ladies who cover the seventh day alternating every other week and pick up an odd shift when I need it. They are both gems who trust to always act in my best interest and to treat people as well as I would. Neither are the all that great as baristas but they are both decent. I never worry about the shop for a second while they are there. I also have a friend who can pick up shifts who is an ace barista and great with people.

My service is consistent if a little wild and weird sometimes. When the group home goes out for coffee they come to my shop, I know their names and talk to them. I've got the vast majority of the minority business because I am happy to get to know and grateful to put coffee in the cup of almost each and every person who walks in the door. One of my black customers who has become over time one of my friends remarked that she didn't like to go in the other place. She said they were all smiles but she could tell that she wasn't welcome there. I let every mail man, UPS driver or construction work crew use my bathroom, they've become customers and the word has spread that a person out working can always get a glass of water and use the john at my place. It's really my joy when I look out on the floor and see every slice of my neighborhood life sitting at my tables. It took a couple years of development to get there but it's probably the thing that has made me the most proud of my spot. I'm sure that there are more than a few people who hate my spot. They hate the color scheme, they hate that I don't have food, they hate that I don't have lilac rose marry infused honey lattes, and they hate that I don't have all natural edged counters cut from the same tree. I'm not kid friendly. I'm not kid unfriendly but if the shop starts to look like a fucking day care with children running around and bouncing off things like bumper cars I'm like to put on NWA until things thin out a bit.

Finally the next nice couple has their dreams shattered by my unwillingness to lay down and die and just make room for the new order of natural edged counters all cut from the same tree. I worked like a dog (I like working, its not all that hard but it's long and I almost never have bad days). I kept love in my heart for all the people who chose to support me. I'm grateful for having had this chapter of my life be at least moderately successful. The second couple were out of business. I went to their equipment sale and purchased a Ditting grinder an almost like new Mazzer for $900, what a fucking deal. The Ditting is a godamn dream.

It's been a few months since they went out of business and I knew sales were up but I hadn't run the numbers and compared them to last year. I figured I was up about 30%. I just ran the January numbers and compared them to sales last year and I found that I was up 66% from last year! It's huge. It's money coming in long after fixed costs have been taken care of. I could probably make more money doing any number of things but it wouldn't be my gig and my customers. It makes me feel pretty great.

They are going to tear my shop down in about two years and I'm ok with that. It'll only be two years of the type of money I had hopped would be coming in all this time but it'll be all the sweeter for having buried a pair of starry eyed dancers dreams by being consistent and friendly and enjoying almost every day of my work life.

cgod  ·  1658 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: October 9th 2019  ·  

One of my cats learned how to kill birds and proceeded to attempt a neighborhood genocide. He went from not killing birds to killing one or two a day.

We ordered some bell collars and his kill count went down to one every two days.

We have more bells coming today, they are supposedly louder and ring easier than the ones we have.

I took his collar off today to adjust the bells (he was able to hook their rings on his teeth). He bolted during the collar adjustment and came back 20 min later with a bird.

If I can't get the bird kill rate down to something like one a year than he'll only be able to go outside at night.

He's a hell of a cat. The vet just saw him and said something like "this is what a healthy cat should look like!" He's lean fit and smart. I've never had a smart cat before.

Hope I can get a handle on his murderous behavior.

I'm drinking Broken Top bourbon from Sisters Oregon, I think they have bourbon figured out at their price point.

cgod  ·  1812 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: May 8, 2019  ·  

We adopted a five year old Australian Cattle Dog on Monday of last week. He bolted Tuesday of last week. We tried to catch him but he is one smart and athletic dog. A dog recovery non-profit saw our post on Facebook and got involved the next day. A super athletic friend of mine who helped in the chase gave us a 5% chance of catching him by running him down. I had taken to calling him Nelson Bolt because he loves freedom as much as Nelson Mandela and was as fast as Usain Bolt.

You might say that we should have been more careful and you would be right. His disposition the night we brought him home lulled us into a false sense of security. When brought into the house he pretty much glued himself onto family members every moment, especially my wife. He seemed like a lover not a runner and when he took off first chance he had it was a surprise.

We posted fliers within a mile that said call us with a location but don't chase him and don't feed him. We didn't need to post fliers over such a big area, he stayed in small five block area that was about a quarter block from our house. When it became apparent that standing around in a nonthreatening way with a hotdog wasn't going to lure him in the non-profit provided us with a dog trap.

The dog trap spent three days at the edge of his range with no hits besides three or four pissed off house cats.

The dog recovery people said to leave the trap in one place for three days before you move it. During this time most the calls of sightings were one damn block from our house! The trap was at the furthest point from this location that was part of his range (we had a pretty dope Google map of his sightings).

One of the days we got a text that he was heading down the street toward our house. My wife went outside to try and spot him. A random lady walked up just as the dog did, followed my wife's gaze and watched him calmly trotting.

"That's my dog," says the wife. The lady looked puzzled.

"He ran away on Tuesday." The lady gives my wife an more puzzled look.

"You can't catch him, watch," and let out a little whistle, causing the dogs head to jerk around and bound off into a back yard.

The dog knew every Ally and lose fence post in a backyard by this point. He probably knows the neighborhood as well as any creature on Earth.

Finally we moved the trap right next to the house with a chicken broth trail leading from a woodpile he was known to frequent to the cage. That night he struck. Little monster reached over the trigger plate, pulled the plate with the bait out of the cage and had himself a snack. He robbed the cage twice that night.

This was all good. He thought he knew a good place to find a quick and easy meal and it was going to be his downfall. Meanwhile we caught three more cats, one of which was my super dumb cat who got caught three times, much to his distress.

I drilled a holes in a piece of plexi glass and tied it the the front bottom front edge of the trip plate, it extended the trigger for about six more inches but it was invisible under the towel that we had hiding the mechanism. He could see where the trip plate was under the towel but the extension was tied lower than the plate and it was pretty much invisible.

About 9:30 at night I heard a sad sad howl and a few little yips. We had him. The cage with the dog was too heavy for me to move myself but you were supposed to move the cage to an enclosed space before opening. My closest buddy wasn't answering his phone and I didn't know what to do. Probably stupidly I cracked the door open with my body leaned into it, any 50 lb dog that can shift my 230 lbs has earned it.

I got a hand on his collar and he went nuts. It reminded me of catching a real big fish, thrashing in every direction. I worried that he might shake loose as I dragged him out the trap and hoped he wouldn't bite me. I got a second had on his collar and drug him to the front door. He was pinning himself to every bit of architecture in a final struggle for freedom. I basically gave him a big heave with both hands on his collar and launched him through the door, legs splayed in every direction with a spinning thud, claws scrambling on the wooden floors. He looked around stunned for a moment and than crept up to wife and glued himself to her side, just like the day we got him. He was once again a sweet mild dog that loved people.

The chase consumed seven days. The dog appeared a bit skinnier, super filthy but none the worse for ware. He does seem to be unsure of his situation and a bit nervous and I'll at ease most the time. We've had him back for two full days.

He trusts me less than any other person he's met so far, which I suppose is fair seeing as I caught him and than gave him a bit of rough handeling. All the same he's sat next to and put his hand in my lap.

He really likes meeting people and other dogs. He's great at walking on a leash and is a lustful walker. He seems to know no commands which kind of surprised me with how well behaved he is on a leash, he's better than most well trained dogs I've known.

I took him to the vet and and a few not too crowded public spaces. He's behaved really well. He's friendly with kids. he behaved well when given a bath, only twice attempting half hearted escapes and wow was that dog dirty.

I haven't had a dog in twenty years and all the dogs I've had we raised as puppies. I didn't think much about how different adopting an adult dog would be. Giving him as much attention as he wants and lots of sweet praise to let him know we're glad he's with us. They say it takes about three months for a dog to get fully comfortable in new home, I hope he does.

cgod  ·  2137 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Shit like this makes me glad I'm not famous  ·  

Have you known many women who were sexually assaulted and ignored, shamed or blamed? Know anyone who's life was ruined by it, left to be fearful, mentally ill or unable to have well adjusted adult relationships?

I think the current witch hunt is of way less importance than the change it might make in our world.

Too bad for the ones who get cut down in all innocence, we may never know who they are.

Have you ever pressured for sex?

Maybe it wasn't rape but maybe it wasn't really what she wanted.

It's a horrible unfair world.

Maybe this is what has to happen for it to be a little less so in the future.

It didn't seem like it was going to change without some kind of revolution and no revolution happens without some blood in the streets.

I hope a guy in college is afraid when he's trying to coerce my daughter into to doing something she doesn't want to.

I hope that it comes around to making those people with the least power safer from their bosses, their landlords the cops.

My mom, a school teacher who retired to become a librarian, a women of modest demeanor and habits says that she and almost all her female friends have been sexually harassed by cops during traffic stops.

It's been a shitty brutal and fearful world to be a women.

Maybe someday soon, maybe tomorrow it will be a little less so.

cgod  ·  2153 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: PSA: The hubwheel is not a "like" button.  ·  x 2

The clicking of the hubwheel is a deeply personal decision of which any one else's dogmatic or relavatory advice should be considered purely advisory.

cgod  ·  2219 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: The Absence of Olive Gardens  ·  

Just a brief aside on the chain restaurant business model.

They buy nothing from Sysco. There is one business that owns the restaurant side and another that owns the distribution side. They are owned by the same guys. For all I know there might be a third that manufactures the slop.

Sysco can't provide the the consistency or the product that these stores need at a price they will pay. All the sauces come in jugs, cans or in frozen packets, the sauces are only for that chain. The cooks might need to rehydrate them.

The meat products are easy to handle and perfectly uniform having no variance in size or shape. Sysco dumps garbage on its customers with regularity, changes distributors or what ever it can to make an extra dime, wider variation in size of proteins or a different precooked burger than before. Sysco tells you that you are wrong and their shit is great, deal with it or call FSA.

Chains get exactly what they want at a competive price. The sauce is always the same because it's in the same 200 gallon batch by the same guy every time.

When a chain wants to expand they lower distribution prices and a franchise looks great profit wise. When a chain wants to boost it's stock price it tightens up costs on the distribution side and buys back a few of the franchises that it's stressed out with higher prices.

The chain sets the price on the menu and it sets the price of distribution. It makes all the profit on wholly owned stores, it makes all the money on distribution, it makes it's franchise fee.

A chain can raise distribution fees to lower store profits so that managers can't make their performance goals if they think too much money is going out in bounuses.

I've worked for franchises that were buying higher quality ingredients for a lower price to boost product quality and profits. Mixing three bags of franchise cheese with one bag of better cheese and making sure that the good shit was hard to find in the walk in just in case there was a cooperate inspection. It's the stuff lawsuits were made for.

cgod  ·  2522 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: An Essay from 1922: Why I Quit Being So Accommodating  ·  

He makes that point by the end of the essay.

cgod  ·  2656 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: It's Official: Sixteen Government Agencies Now Have Access To Unminimized Domestic NSA Collections  ·  

I'm not joking and I don't think my views are dumb.

I'm comfortable with you not agreeing with me, you have your own belifes and values, doesn't make you right or me wrong to value and worry about different things.

Nice knee jerk, doesn't agree with me so it's dumb.

cgod  ·  2656 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: It's Official: Sixteen Government Agencies Now Have Access To Unminimized Domestic NSA Collections  ·  

I keep trying to put out a decent response but Portland is snowed in and the shop is busy. I'll be brief.

There are no triumphs in foreign policy and many dissatisfaction.

We still have troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and now have troops in a few new countries. The Arab spring made nothing better. Pivot to Asia doesn't seem to have even happened. Rapprochement with Russia, well...lolz. Israel is...a fucking mess, we really couldn't be getting along with them worse. Relations with Cuba is a nice thing but pretty underwhelming. There have been some improvements in relations with regional economic and governance groups around the world. He killed Osama!

Health care costs jumped more this year than they have in decades. Health care is supposed to be Obama's big thing. Personally I don't feel like the health care reform was done well, it might mostly be because I've paid more for less care every year since it's been passed and I lack any objectivity about all the good it's done. I'm paying significantly more for significantly less care as are most other people I know.

He 'saved the economy.' I think most presidents would have done about the same thing he did. Lots of people lost their homes but the 1% did pretty well as he bailed out the banks.

Some decent work on the environment and workers rights. Don't call it a legacy because much of it will be gutted in the next two years. Gays can openly serve in the military and LGBT rights have been advanced, that's cool but not really big impact stuff that wasn't coming down the pipes in the next decade Obama or not.

The main reason I think he should live in infamy. Government has become opaque and the citizens transparent. Bush got things started but the Obama administration really ran with it. Massive surveillance technology has been brought to bear against citizens while Freedom of Information requests are being denied at a record rate. NSL letters, prosecution of whistle blowers, Sneak and Peek warrants, suspicionless stops of American citizens at internal US checkpoints by the boarder patrol, prosecutions that are based on the fruit of knowledge obtained by technology's like stingrays where the defendant never gets to challenge the initial search or even know that it existed (who knows what else they are using). I could go on but this is a fair collection of the things his administration has been up to that trouble me.

The people get to see less and less of how the sausage is made while they have lost most of the protections that used to be assumed to be protected under the 4th amendment against getting ground up by government. I think that the relationship between government and the governed has been profoundly changed and there will be terrible consequences down the line when the new powers and protections available to government fall into the wrong hands. I think people we will look back and say that this was the time things really went off the tracks. Bush II was the inflection point in relationship and Obama was the guy who pushed things over the edge needlessly.

I could be getting crazy. I sound a lot like people I've known who were survailed and assailed by the FBI in the 60's. They sounded a little crazy to me until I heard some of the dirty tricks that the government put on them. There are people I love and respect who think I'm a little wacky but I still think that our society is in deep trouble and that Obama has done things that are undermining our basic constitutional protections and enhancing government power by degrading constitutional freedoms and the liberal democracy.

On an up note I just found out that a coffee shop three blocks from me is closing down. Huzzah! The opened after me and there is plenty of space to put a coffee shop without being that close to another one in this part of town. It was kind of a dick move. Their coffee wasn't as good as mine but they had some nice pastries that they made on site. I think what killed them was not being open 7 days a week and changing their hours too much. If they had been open seven days a week and had better brewing equipment they probably wouldn't have closed up shop. I don't know that I'll see a lot of business from them closing but I'll see a bit. They were very new Portland with natural wood edge counters and shiny and slick, my old building shop has a lot of character. I'm sure they played a lot of very comfortable music, I play all kinds of weird shit that is delightful if you don't want the standard Portland playlist. It's a lifestyle guig. I'm very old Portland... WTE, things might get better but they aren't going to change. I'd rather jump off a bridge than look at a natural edge counter all cut from the same tree for the rest of my days. Huzzah! Huzzah! I've outlasted the competition! I'm busier this winter than last! Huzzah! Seriously I just found out about this and want to crow but don't want to come off as a dick to my customers so this is my outlet.

cgod  ·  2723 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: It's election day America!  ·  

"Remember, politics aside, no matter the outcome we're all neighbors. That's something worth holding onto."

I've been ruminating on just this thing all week. I don't give a damn who wins as long as Chloe Eudaly beats Steve Novice for city council. I've talked at least 4 people into voting for her (maybe as many as a dozen). It's a close race and Steve has spent ten times the money Chloe has. If I ever ran for office I'd shake the hand of every damn bartender and barista in the city and give them a campaign T-shirt.

I liked that Chloe used comic as a campaign device.


cgod  ·  2737 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: So long hubski   ·  

Not advising you to do one thing or the other but I urge you to consider if giving up some freedom right now could help you achieve more freedom later.

You don't sound very free.

cgod  ·  2986 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: My Current Soundtrack  ·  

I've known people who click through dating/mating apps and go on dates with three or four different people a week. Hell I've known people who will scheduled three dates in an evening, if the first one is going well they will cancel the next two and so on. I suppose it's playing the odds, dating like you are buying a lottery ticket, you never know the next one might be a winner.

The cold ask out of a person you just met or didn't even know was always there but it seems like people are more like to go for the quick and shallow date without much meaning attached to it than they ever were before.

I don't know if I'm saying this at all well. If you go on one hundred dates a year you might look at going on a date with a coworker with little consideration of the consequences. It's just another date. All dates are just another date, nothing to em, just push through em like enemies in a video game until you find a golden chest.

You used to only be able to date people you knew and consequently would have to gauge the social or work related consequences of who you were going to go out with more carefully than an average tinder date. You had to weigh the relative merits of the person and how they related to your world with some care (not necessarily some kind of extraordinary care but it mattered). There was always the cold ask out of a person you met while at a book store, the bar or a show but there were way less of these people to hook up with than there are now that the internet has aggregated demand.

Now a days you can go on three dates in a night or one hundred dates in a year even if you are less than the studliest guy or more desirable girl around. You don't have to try and suss out how compatible a person is, what your friends would think if you started seeing her, if Donna would still consider going out with you if she knew you went out on a date with Susan. You can just date your ass off, separate the wheat from the chaff as you find them. No worries about if your compatible, do you share the same tastes, does their laugh annoy the shit out of you. The consensus of people I've seen who date hard and often is that you should know in the first ten to twenty minutes if a person is worth your time. No more working up the nerve or deciding if your really interested.

It's a different world.

cgod  ·  2998 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: What makes an atheist love religious music?  ·  x 2

I think this fella's fondness for religious music is a bit shallow. Religious music is beautiful because it speaks of an all encompassing love, solace, and forgiveness from a power so much more potent than the powers of man that it has to leave one grasping to touch it's hem.

I don't have a single shred of faith but would that I did. What comfort it would be to have a vessel to put all my shame, fear and doubt into. I'm jealous of those who have found such solace.

I could put up more and better but I'm pretty tired and can't seem to get neurons to fire.

cgod  ·  3027 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: A Fighter's Hour of Need  ·  

The NY State Athletic Commission is orders of magnitude better than the athletic commissions in some other states. This is not a defense of what happened that night, it's inexcusable. The things that go on in other states are just deplorable. Fighters that would never be allowed to fight in New York due to existing injuries are given no significant pre-fight medical exam and matched up against significantly more skilled opponents. Boxing needs a national over site board. Fighters need more education about the risks they face when they go in the ring and the risks of having anything but a brief career. There needs to be a unified sanctioning body and greater over site of the relations between managers, promoters, referees, sanctioning bodies and athletic commissions for conflicts of interest and ethical lapses. Many places that have enacted laws governing the over site of boxing often don't enforce their laws.

cgod  ·  3183 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: I opened my coffee shop yesterday...  ·  

Yo, I'm forty years old, I've worked my ass off for this to happen.

I've lived so much of my life as a useless wastrel...

Just getting my shit together right now.

You seem to have yourself together much more than I did at your age and you look much better in a suit than I do.

Don't despair.

I've been paying rent on this space for just over a year. My finances are devastated. I've got so many battle scars from dealing with the city. I don't know if I had it to do over if I would, but here I am.

If anyone asked me what I thought of you I would say that you are a smart, articulate, handsome man who is passionate and good at expressing himself in the written word. You have at least one niche that you are destined to fill and will probably inspire many people to reach for something more than they would have without you.

We haven't had many direct interactions on Hubski but I always take note of what you have to offer and it has sadden me whenever you have drawn away from the community because people are shitty. There is something good waiting for you, hope you see it when it pops it's head up.

cgod  ·  3255 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Memorial Day  ·  

A young vet that I know was at the bar last night. He has been mentally damaged by his wartime service. It had been several years since he had gone on face book to check up on the men he served with. He had known 4 men in his company that had died up to that point. He decided that he had to find out who else he had lost for memorial day.

11 more men in his company had died in the last few years, several by their own hand. He was pretty much a wreck. He's a stoic guy and he was a stoic mess but I know him well enough to know that he was spinning. A company is 100-200 men, 7-15% of the guys he served with were dead. This was the only time this young ex-marine has opened up to me about his service.

Other guys at the bar didn't know his story, wished him a happy memorial day, thought he was going to break down.

He asked me to play taps, I told him we would finish the night with it. He stood like an iron rod, saluting to Taps, tears on his face. Didn't kick him out with the rest and talked to him for 15 minutes. Whatever I said was inadequate, he felt very alone and out of place in this world.

Barry Saddler is Jingoistic schlock, I still like to listen to in memorial day and veterans day. I'm going to finish my professional memorial day with Taps from now on.

Having worked and lived in the same neighborhood for ten years I got to know many of the people in my neighborhood pretty well.

Virgil usually lives under the porch of an abandon house. Long and lean with a head of pretty tidy dreadlocks. Back in the day he was a boxer, fought on ESPN once. Guy dropped out of a fight and he got called up for his TV debut with only a weeks training camp, lost and became a footnote in some anthers mans less than spectacular fight career. He likes to have cold beverages in summer, I give him ice from the machine at work. He washes the windows at my place of employment, does a terrible job but my asshole boss is actually a softy if he gets to know you.

Ron is also long and lean. The man swings between unkempt and desperate with eyes reeking the deep yellow of a failing liver to calm, tidy and cleared eyed many times in the course of a year. I can't be too generous to Ron or he starts to expect too much. When he looks like he is about to die I feed him. I never give him money anymore, I gave him too much once when he promised to pay me back and didn't come through. It's not that I expected him to pay me back but if he had I'd still be slipping him a buck or two today. He says he's married but I've never met her, I don't know if his wife is a comforting fiction or a person who dreads Ron darkening her door. I don't buy any of the his stolen goods.

Cici used to friends with my friend Shaun. Shaun was a gentle and generous hearted junkie, I figure Cici is as well. She used to be real sweet and gentle but the last few years seem to have ground her down. She never asks anything of me but cigarettes, peppermint candies and matches from the bar. I think she will die in the next few years, she looks bad and runs around with people I don't like seeing.

Haven't seen Jerry in years. He used to be my can man (I'd save all my bottles and cans and let him turn them in for the nickles). One Christmas he started banging on my door wildly yelling shit. I opened up and he came crashing into my living room all wild and scary. He got a little thumping and next time he showed up for the cans, no memory of what happened, he was told to fuck off for ever. Feel a little bad for Jerry, we passed the time and shared a beer more than a few summer evenings on the porch. I didn't want our association to end that way but what if it was just my wife home next time.

I traded in Jerry for Jo Anne. Jo Anne is awesome! I don't live in that house anymore and I don't get to see her. Jo Anne is a large, older black lady who has seen some hard days. She rides her bike around picking up cans to supplement her social security checks. She lives in her sisters basement. Her sisters kids are mean to her, stole her bike and left it abandoned somewhere one time. Just some cold hearted teenage shits. Jo Anne always has the best gossip on the underbelly of the neighborhood. She would tell me who the black community thought killed the couple that won the lottery, what bums to watch out for and every other juicy tidbit that was going around. I spent all kinds of time just talking about this and that with her, easiest lady to just kick it with. I have all kinds of respect for how hard she works to get a little extra cash together. I fear for her poor health and the day that she can't ride her bike around anymore.

Once when we were out of town my sister and law, Samantha, was staying at the house. Jo Anne came to the door to see if we had any cans. Samantha answered the door and here is this beat looking big old black lady who is obviously comfortable and expecting to talk to someone she knows. I have to imagine that Sam looked a little surprised. Jo Anne immediately realized that it was an awkward moment and shouted out "I'M THE BLACK LADY THAT GET'S THE CANS." I heard this story from both parties in the end, both of them thought it was hilarious for different reasons. Whenever a visitor would come to town I'd end up taking them on a tour of the trendy little main drag close to the house. Jo Anne would usually be somewhere on the street hustling. I'd always get a kick out of running into her and shooting the shit, and eventualy inventing a reason to hand my baby daughter to her for a minute (tie my shoe or fishing out a few bucks for Jo Anne, whatever). Jo Anne had been holding my daughter since was three months old and my kid knew her as a trusted family friend but watching the face of my Mom, or an out of town aunt, as some gnarly, old, loud black street lady held their flesh and blood was pretty hilarious.

I'm Just realizing I haven't seen her around the last few times I was in the neighborhood, hope she is ok.

There are a few other street people I know that are fucking scum. The crazy old lady that pisses on cars and tried to spit on my baby. I actually hope she dies. If she had actually successfully spit on my kid I don't know what I would have done, I know where she sleeps, it wouldn't have been good.

The old meth lady with the artificial leg and no teeth who steal shit from peoples yards. If she were to leave us tomorrow I wouldn't feel sad.

The old robust black guy who tried to gently mug me one night, he can go to hell as well.

There are at least one or two other prominent "people in my neighborhood" that I wish guilty white folks would stop funding because they are nothing more than a menace to society. Maybe we made them that way but if they weren't there that neighborhood would be a better, safer place to live.

The more I think about this persons White affluence, guilt privilege essay the more I think it's naive piece of garbage. Each person trying to get a dollar out of you is exactly that, a person. Some of them are marvelous or mediocre people working as hard as they can to find a little comfort in this world. Many others are blights on society. Maybe they are blights because they have mental problems that a more enlightened society could ameliorate but I don't know that the solution lies anywhere close to acknowledging their humanity and giving them a few bucks.

Boots on the ground I got to say this essay's first half is the product of timidness, guilt and naivete. The second half seems laudable. Pretty large number of spare changers are the kinds of people that will steal from you, try to mug you or just do some crazy ass shit like try and spit on your baby for no reason at all (except for a reason of hideous madness). There seems to be no rational course of action beside finding out who the hell you are going to give your hard earned money to before you start guiltily spreading it around.

Creepy thing to me, I don't know any street people in my new neighborhood. Maybe I know one guy, he dresses like a street Keith Richards (which pretty much means like he dresses like Keith Richards while making the most of pretty limited wardrobe). He is out canning and we have had two small chats but I can't say I really know him. There is a lady from the sub-continent who cans, she seems to be working pretty hard but is timid. I'd give her my cans but for a barrier of language or caution that keeps us from getting to know each other.

All the rest of the people who are out canning (no one in my new neighborhood spare changes) are Mexicans. They work late and cautious, I'm not going to get to know them. It's just five miles away from my old house, in the same city, in a less affluent but still desirable neighborhood but a totally different vibe. I guess it's a cooler vibe because I don't think anyone here is going to try and spit on my baby, but I do miss Jo Anne.