Every day I express my gratitude to the cosmos in my own silent way, but when we get to the end of Thanksgiving day, I’m just glad it’s over.
The saving grace of Thanksgiving, the warm quilt of redemption, is my annual viewing of John Hughes’ 'Planes, Trains and Automobiles.' The movie will never make one of those all-time-films lists, but it’s fair to call it a holiday classic, and the warmth I feel watching the movie reminds me of the warmth I felt growing up in a mostly-functional Midwestern family and the warmth I feel now in my own household. But removed from the context of the movie, the soundtrack, as a standalone listening experience, makes absolutely no sense, and like Thanksgiving, it kind of sucks.
Altri episodi di "The Suburban Abyss"
Episode 24: Thanksgiving Sucks, and So Does the Planes, Trains and Automobiles Soundtrack
11:29Every day I express my gratitude to the cosmos in my own silent way, but when we get to the end of Thanksgiving day, I’m just glad it’s over. The saving grace of Thanksgiving, the warm quilt of redemption, is my annual viewing of John Hughes’ 'Planes, Trains and Automobiles.' The movie will never make one of those all-time-films lists, but it’s fair to call it a holiday classic, and the warmth I feel watching the movie reminds me of the warmth I felt growing up in a mostly-functional Midwestern family and the warmth I feel now in my own household. But removed from the context of the movie, the soundtrack, as a standalone listening experience, makes absolutely no sense, and like Thanksgiving, it kind of sucks.
Episode 23: Gordon Lightfoot and the Golden Autumn World Just Outside My Grasp
5:53At this time last year, as we spent the fall unpacking boxes and putting our lives back in place, I envisioned a much different day-to-day in our new environs. I thought I would sit outside more. Take more walks. Chop more wood. Modern life has pulled us away from the natural world. That notion is nothing new, but even here in my roving home office in the leafy green nowhere, with the ability to move at will, to step outside, put my feet to the earth and smell the pine-scented air around me, most days I stay put in front of the screen.
Episode 22: Teenage Angst Has Paid Off Well
17:12My friends and I first heard about the Nirvana show on the radio, and we could not believe our ears – not only was Nirvana coming, but Nirvana was coming to Akron, not Cleveland. It was unheard of. The biggest band in our universe was playing 10 minutes away, and on Halloween no less. We were never this close to the action; we had to be there or we absolutely would die.
Episode 21: Inscription Friendships and Farewell Transmissions
17:30It’s been a year since we moved from Boise to Northeast Ohio, and my friendships, be them near or far or old or young, are in various states of order and disorder. Whenever someone moves, all the staying-in-touch talk comes on fast and strong. Some of the talk comes from a place of genuine intent, some out of polite, yet otherwise empty social obligation. Sometimes it’s hard to tell which is which, and 12 months after our move, I’m standing firm with some friends, in a long wave goodbye with others, or stuck somewhere in between on shaky, undefined ground.
Desperation Fanzine: "The Wall of Rejection"
9:24As summer 2021 comes to an end, we pause from the episodic format of The Suburban Abyss for a reading of an essay on a long-ago return home and the poetic and not-so-poetic embrace of the emerging fall, originally published in the out-of-print "lost" debut issue of Desperation Fanzine, a prequel of sorts to The Suburban Abyss.
Summer Rerun: The Moving Saga - Complete Recordings
1:25:22Instead of skipping this week entirely, I decided to string together all eight parts of the Moving Saga, as it’s come to be known, that kicked off the start of The Suburban Abyss blog and podcast. If you’re new here, this eight-part story details how our family decided to move from Boise back to my native Northeast Ohio during the peak of the summer Covid surge in 2020. If you already know the story, this is an easy way to revisit it from start to finish. Thank you for listening.
Episode 20: What a Lawn Strange Trip It's Been
10:55We’ve officially been in Ohio a year now, and I’ve already spent more time mowing the lawn than I did in 15 years living in Boise. That’s not an exaggeration. In Boise, it took 20 minutes to mow our tiny lot’s dusty lawn. Here on nearly an acre of land in Hudson, it takes two hours to complete. The sensible and/or wealthy ones in town own riding mowers or farm out the job to professional landscapers, but my bullish blue-collar roots won’t allow either, and besides, I want the exercise. Lastly, but most importantly, I’ve found friends to keep me company on the grass in the Grateful Dead.
Episode 19: The Basement Smells Like Uncle (Again)
14:23In November 2005, I moved to Boise with a duffle bag of clothes, a Sony Discman and a Case Logic CD binder, and the first place I slept was the couch in my brother’s basement. It was meant to be a stopgap, a temporary measure to save money while my wife, Erica, stayed back in New Hampshire until our house sold. We figured it would only be a month or so. It ended up being four and some change, but for my own comfort and sanity, I bolted from the basement long before Erica landed in Boise on April 1, 2006. In a micro sense, my return trip in July resembled those initial weeks in Boise 16 years ago. Twenty-four hours before my daughter, Magnolia, and I were to touch down on the tarmac, our lodging for the 16-day trip fell through, so I texted Travis to see if we could crash with his family until we sorted it out. But shortly into our stay, it became clear that, unless we ponied up for a hotel or Airbnb, we were stuck squatting on the basement sectional until the bitter end.
Episode 18: Travis and John O Fight for Sting's Non-Sexual Affection
1:17:04The Suburban Abyss returns from its summer break with my first-ever guests, record collectors/lifelong music fans Travis Dryden and John O’Neil, who spent an hour with me in Boise discussing the highs and lows of Sting’s recorded output with the Police and as a solo artist.
Episode 17: Radiohead and the Sounds of Summer
13:25I had started thinking about the album on a run after the humidity against my skin and the pre-storm static in the air transported me back to the summer of ’97, and revisiting "OK Computer" that afternoon ultimately led me back to "Kid A," because it always gets back to "Kid A." "Kid A" exists at the opposite end of the Radiohead spectrum, far away from the artful guitar squall of "OK Computer," and even though its temperature is cooler – icy, even – it’s still a summer album to me.