Random thoughts for today

Some things that were running through my mind today:

  • Earlier today, the song “One of Us” was played on the radio. The second verse asks,

    If God had a face, what would it look like
    And would you want to see
    If seeing meant that you would have to believe
    In things like heaven and in Jesus and the saints and all the prophets.

    And I think that, yes, I would like to see God showing up and showing His face. That is probably all that’s needed to make a believer out of me.

  • Related to this, Desmond Child used this song to defend his nonsensical lyrics for “If God Could Talk“. This discussion between him and Todd Rundgren is gold.
  • Two days ago, I received a copy of Karla DeVito’s 1982 Christmas-single, “Santa Claus is Coming to my House”. [mp3 download / lyrics] (Karla is the woman you see but don’t hear in the video for that song by Meat Loaf.) Maybe I’ll post some more seasonal music next week, to counter all the crappy Christmas music.
  • Put the FSM back in ChriFSMas.
  • In the light of Ike Tuner’s passing: can you value work produced by someone whose private life and acts you find appalling?
  • To quote the great philosopher Shania Twain, You must be joking, right?: Christian teenagers watch porn, too. (in Dutch)

The Thing that Should not Be

Most people will know about my strong dislike of that worthless excuse for a browser that is Internet Explorer, and some will even share it. So when I found a tutorial for a plush IE Voodoo Doll, I LOL’d. And then I just had to get all arts-and-crafty:

The Thing that Should not Be

First Lines: Rose Madder

Bookstores are literally littered with books. Finding a book to read within such confines requires some sort of approach. There is one theory by Marshall McLuhan (he of “the medium is the message” fame) that says you should take a book, turn to page 69 and read it. If you like that page, take the book home and read it. If not, don’t.

One could ponder and theorize about the ‘page 69 test’, or one could put it to test. Let’s do the latter.

On page 69 of Stephen King’s Rose Madder, we find Rosie McClendon sitting in the office of a woman’s shelter, after she fled from her abusive husband. Here, she is told that Providence (with a capital P) brought her to the shelter, and when asked what her skills are, she realizes she has none.

Is this representative of the book as a whole? I think so. As far as the story goes, it isn’t overly exciting. A woman flees from home, and a mad man follows. The supernatural angle didn’t sit well with me, just as the concept of providence: it’s like saying that there’s no such thing as luck and everything happens the way it happens because of some supernatural force. A painting that works as door to another world (This world, all worlds…) is a nice concept, but the way the Rosie’s problem is taken care of in that world feels like a cop-out. If it wasn’t written so well, it probably would have been a unremarkable novel. The few allusions to the Dark Tower — …like a rare flower in a weedy vacant lot… — are nice for fanboys like me, but no big deal in the greater scheme of things.

Still, great first line.

Book read
Stephen King — Rose Madder
First line
She sits in the corner, trying to draw air out of a room which seemed to have plenty just a few minutes ago and now seems to have none.

One way ticket to Spain, please

Tonight it’s Sinterklaasavond. Which means that if all goes well, I’ll be on my way to Spain tomorrow. And if de Sint thinks I’ve been a good boy, well, here I am, breaking the law again.

Another typically Dutch thing is Kinderen voor Kinderen. Sort of a children’s choir singing popsongs, often dealing with serious issues. Their song “Ik ben toch zeker Sinterklaas niet” [mp3] (featuring other Dutch children’s icon Edwin ‘ome Willem‘ Rutten) is barely about Sinterklaas. It’s written by Henk en Henk, who are also responsible for the inferior “Sinterklaas (Wie kent hem niet?)” [live version on youtube]. I was going to write more about this, but while digging up that last video, I came across this:

A few years ago, I was discussing how great it would be if you’d ‘punk up’ some Kinderen voor Kinderen songs. And apparently, Kinderen tegen Kinderen do exactly that. You can download this song from their website.