- Last month I wrote about
how I’d been listening to Melissa Auf der Maur’s first solo
album; this month, it’s been Brody Dalle’s.
Her band the Distillers had put out an album in
2003 that I liked a lot, but I hadn’t
kept up with her post‐Distillers efforts.
The solo album is a lot more sophisticated than the Distillers stuff:
it’s still fundamentally a hard rock record, and Brody Dalle
still has that distinctive “Courtney Love if Courtney Love
could sing” voice, but it’s a lot more atmospheric and
includes some unexpected twists like prominent brass sections.
But the reason I mention this is that I discovered a doozy of a
coincidence: Melissa Auf der Maur co‑wrote her first
solo album with Josh Homme of Queens of the Stone Age.
Brody Dalle, it turns out, is married to Josh Homme and has
three children with him.
That got me thinking about some other links and loops.
For instance, Shirley Manson provides guest vocals on Brody
Shirley Manson is in Garbage with Butch Vig, who won fame for recording
Nirvana’s breakthrough record.
Nirvana’s drummer was Dave Grohl, who was in Queens of the Stone
Age and Them Crooked Vultures with Josh Homme, who as noted is married
to Brody Dalle.
You can also do the loop that Nirvana was fronted by Kurt Cobain,
who was married to Courtney Love, who was in Hole with Melissa Auf der
Maur, who as noted co‑wrote her first record with Josh
(I came up with around twenty of these but I think I’ll stop
- I have noticed that this year when I catch a student doodling,
whether it be in a test prep classroom or a high school one, invariably
it will turn out that she is rendering an intricately shaded human
Is there some kind of “how to draw realistic eyes” viral
video going around or something?
- An analogy I sometimes use when encouraging students to get familiar
with test prep strategies instead of sticking with the approaches they
learned in school (and which are getting them the scores they find
unsatisfactory) is that it’s like when I switched from
at first my typing speed plummeted, but after forcing myself to use it
for a couple of weeks, I was typing much faster than I ever had with
But the lesson I secretly draw from this example is pretty simple:
typing is freaky!
Like, I think of the sentence I want to type, and my fingers bash away
at the keys, and the sentence appears on my screen, and I have no idea
what my fingers are doing to make that happen.
I can look down at my keyboard and watch my fingers move and I am not
consciously controlling where they go.
It’s not just a matter of, “Oh, I know that keyboard layout
so well I don’t even have to think about
it”—because I don’t know it.
Ask me to write out the Dvorak keyboard layout instead of copying
a picture of it and I couldn’t do it.
Clearly some part of my brain has internalized the location of each
letter, but my conscious mind has not.
I guess it’s not too different from the way I don’t think
about (and often couldn’t tell you) exactly how my mouth is moving
when I speak: very rarely do I think “now I want to say the word
‘diploid’, so I will start by placing the tip of my tongue
against the alveolar ridge of the roof of my mouth” or what have
But somehow the typing weirds me out more.
Maybe because I can watch it happen.
- I was talking to someone about how there’s a new Strawberry
Shortcake, only to discover that the Strawberry Shortcake that I thought
of as the new one is no longer considered the new one, because now
there’s a new new one.