Last night I went with my husband and a few friends to hear First Aid Kit perform to a sold out house at Webster Hall in NYC. The band comprises two gifted Swedish sisters – Johanna and Klara Söderberg – who, along with a drummer, perform in a folky, indie-rock style. But, aside from those classifications, the music is very much their own. My husband attributes their unique sound to the kind of vocal harmonies that can only come from siblings singing together. I very much agree. I first saw them in this video (posted by a colleague of mine) on Facebook back around 2009, and I was instantly charmed. Anyway, here is their first performance on Swedish television in 2008 when they were 15 and 17 respectively. They are far more polished and self assured now, but no less compelling. They have a new album called The Lion’s Roar. It’s good.
A really good documentary takes a subject, no matter how obscure or seemingly uninteresting, and draws you in. I saw Buck last year, and it has stayed with me ever since. The richness of the personal narrative and the overall arc of the movie are seamlessly rendered. I like the fact that the filmmakers don’t rely on sentimentality to convey the depth of the story. Saw the trailer on Everything. All The Time.
So, I had the crazy pleasure of meeting “yoyonub” (aka Miles Chandler) this past weekend. After a late Friday night meal at the home of some friends, this young guy pulls out a yoyo and just mesmerized us all with his command of a couple of small milled pieces of aluminum and a string. OMG. It was a spectacle that I didn’t want to end. The most I ever learned was to Walk the Dog. And I thought I was super cool. Anyway, when I got home that night, I ended up falling into the black hole of the yoyo subculture, and basically stayed up until 3 a.m. looking at every video I could find. Of him, and others. The one thing I can’t convey here is the soothing whir of the yoyo as it spins. I wanted to put Miles’ video up, but the profane soundtrack might offend those of a more pure nature. He was wielding a Popstar yoyo. Like the gentleman above. If you feel the itch to take up a new pursuit…buy one here. Mine is in the mail. And, since I now know that you are hooked, check out this video as well.
I am deep in the middle of that end-of-the-year-clean-off-my-desk thing and came across a clipping from the NYT. It’s a little story about how Switzerland, in an effort to strengthen its animal-welfare laws, has a new regulation on its books regarding the ownership of guinea pigs. Apparently, the little rodents are quite prone to loneliness, so it’s now illegal to own a single guinea pig. As with any new law, there are unforeseen problems that crop up. For instance, what happens when one dies? Do you buy a new one? That could go on ad infinitum. Or do you seek help from Pridska Kung, of Hadlikon, who rents the little guys (castrated males) for as long as you need them? A vexing problem, I daresay. Video via fuckyeahguineapigs.
I never did that well at physics in school. But, in hindsight, I think I want to blame the teacher for making a subject that is so fascinating and poetic into something utterly prosaic. These videos are super cool. From the folks over at Wanken.