the boss honored at kennedy center

bruce springsteen & clarence clemons performing in november, 1975

for those who didn't tune into the kennedy center honors tonight, there was an absolutely amazing tribute paid to bruce springsteen. as one of the five honorees -- the others being robert deniro, mel brooks, dave brubeck, and grace bumbery -- springsteen was described by president obama as "the quiet kid from jersey who grew up to become the rock 'n' roll laureate of a generation.... i'm the president but he's the boss."

after a touching introduction by jon stewart, music legends -- eddie vedder, ben harper, john mellencamp, sting and melissa etheridge -- took to the stage to further honor bruce springsteen's work. mellencamp performed "born in the u.s.a.," dedicating it to the soldiers in iraq and afgnanistan; ben harper covered "my fathers house;" jennifer nettles (from the band sugarland) performed "glory days;" then the two collaborated on the classic "i'm on fire." this was followed with etheridge's cover of "born to run" and vedder's acoustic version of "my city of ruins," for which he was accompanied by a gospel choir. finally, sting, along with another, larger, choir, performed a rousing version of "ths rising" that brought the entire audience to their feet.

bruce springsteen definitely deserved the high praises he received tonight. his music has always, and always will, stand for something important; it tells the stories that are seldom told and it speaks to the masses in a way that not much music can.

“when you listen to bruce’s music, you aren’t a loser. you are a character in an epic poem about losers.” - jon stewart

my baby

pretty good for a girl

away we go

i just finished watching "away we go," a wonderful film starring john krasinski and maya rudolph, and i fell in love with it. i would recommend it to anyone -- it is beautifully written and filmed, paired with a wonderful soundtrack from singer-songwriter alexi murdoch. all of the actors shine, from krasinski and rudolph -- the heart and soul of the film -- to the staggering list of supporting actors -- catherine o'hara, jeff daniels, allison janney, jim gaffigan, maggie gyllenhaal, and paul schneider.

part of my love for this film stems from my love for the director and writer. "away we go" is directed by sam mendes -- the award-winning director of "american beauty" -- and written by vendela vide and dave eggers -- the author of three of my favorite books. while i had known about mendes's directing role, i had no idea that it had been co-written by eggers until after watching, and falling in love with, the film. rather than my love for eggers enforcing my love for the film, my love for the film reinforced my love for eggers.

go watch it. now.

verona: burt, are we fuck-ups?
burt: no! what do you mean?
verona: i mean, we're 34...
burt: i'm 33.
verona: ...and we don't even have this basic stuff figured out.
burt: basic, like how?
verona: basic, like how to live.
burt: we're not fuck-ups.
verona: we have a cardboard window.
burt: [looks at window] we're not fuck-ups.
verona: [whispers] i think we might be fuck-ups.
burt: [whispers back] we're not fuck-ups.


it's christmas! let's be glad!

i'm especially christmas-ey today. i did 90% of my shopping and am wrapping presents and listening to sufjan stevens's hark! songs for christmas volumes 1-3. one of my favorites:

even if your lifes been bad.
they're presents to be had.

take a walk out in the snow.
and hear santas, ho ho ho.
hes got a million miles to go.

la la la la la la ah

sing a carol to your mom.
'cause she knows whats going on.
and she knows if you've been bad or good.

and if you get what you deserve.
to be graded on the curve.
oh you got a lot of nerve.

la la la la la la ah

since the year is almost out
left your hands and give a shout
there's a lot to shout about today

since its christmas lets be glad.
even if the years been bad.
they're presents to be had.
a promotion for your dad.


air mattress

it's no secret that i love conor oberst irrationally. his new album with the mystic valley band, "outer south," features a song sung by guitarist taylor hollingsworth. listen to it. it's amazing.


always remember

it’s so easy to get stuck in the monotony of life. work, school, homework, sleep, and then repeat -- this isn’t so much selfish as it is human. no matter how badly we want there to be, there just isn’t enough time in the world to cherish everything that we have. but, every so often, something snaps us back to reality.

i had this happen to me recently and, while it was shocking, i tried to search for meaning. what i found was this: take a step back; look around you. breathe deeper, laugh harder, let yourself love.

and always, always, always remember:


"If you think I'm annoying and preachy now, you should have known me in grade school."

dave eggers:


"We are unusual and tragic and alive." - a heartbreaking work of staggering genius

"I like the dark part of the night, after midnight and before four-thirty, when it's hollow, when ceilings are harder and farther away. Then I can breathe, and can think while others are sleeping, in a way can stop time, can have it so – this has always been my dream – so that while everyone else is frozen, I can work busily about them, doing whatever it is that needs to be done, like the elves who make the shoes while children sleep." - a heartbreaking work of staggering genius

"...And there is a chance that everything we did was incorrect, but stasis is itself criminal for those with the means to move, and the means to weave communion between people." - you shall know our velocity!

"GOD: I own you like I own the caves.
THE OCEAN: Not a chance. No comparison.
GOD: I made you. I could tame you.
THE OCEAN: At one time, maybe. But not now.
GOD: I will come to you, freeze you, break you.
THE OCEAN: I will spread myself like wings. I am a billion tiny feathers. You have no idea what's happened to me." - how we are hungry

"You invite things to happen. You open the door. You inhale. And if you inhale the chaos, you give the chaos, the chaos gives back." - you shall know our velocity!

"I hung up the phone, jubilant, and threw myself into a wall then pretended to be getting electrocuted. I do this when I'm very happy." - a heartbreaking work of staggering genius

"One might think that a boy who was out in the snow for so long would get cold, but Max was not. He was warm, partly because he had on many layers, and partly because boys who are part wolf and part wind do not get cold." - the wild things

"I have an irregular and bursting heart and that's why I'm here. It erupts so many times every night and I can't help it." - you shall know our velocity!