Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Look. You really should have heard our other ideas...

Very rarely do I actually bring up press we get. It always seems tacky or self-congratulatory or pointless---I mean, we don't have that Sunny Day Real Estate-vibe where we refuse to play California or break-up seven times or find Jesus---so I've always abstained from posting about press. It's the band equivalent of sending one of those Christmas cards with your whole family photographed professionally on the front, in matching reindeer sweaters, and then when you open it it's filled with half-truths about how Junior is really excelling in basketball and his Sophomore year even though he has a well-documented addiction to huffing glue and hits on middle schoolers while they wait for the bus.

But I heard we showed up somewhere interesting yesterday, and I thought I'd share. Perhaps you're familiar with David Eggers. One of our erstwhile readers always suggests, when we ask, that "A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius" is the book to take on tour and read, but, well, Michael Malone usually trumps him somewhere in Arizona. I'm making it a New Year's resolution to actually read this book, starting when our post New Year's Eve show hangover ends, which should be sometime in mid-February. Eggers also runs a tutoring facility called "826 Valencia," which, in addition to providing cheap and sometimes free help for all flavors of writing, reading, and test taking, is also a pirate store filled with oddities with products tucked in Tim-Burton looking drawers, dioramas, and a giant vat of lard sitting in the middle. Bonus points for being located next to Paxon Gate, which contains all manner of taxidermy, carnivorous plants, and mammal skeletons dressed up in Victorian-era garb. If you have a ten year old, you should probably take him there. If you don't like your ten year old boy, you might be able to leave him there. Not that I'd condone that, but, trust me: he will not be bored.

Eggers also edits something called "Best American Nonrequired Reading". They're collections of stories, comics, Onion headlines, errata, and lists. We showed up the Best Band Names of 2005.

Of course, not everyone likes the name. In fact, we've found ourselves on some Worst Band names lists. We sent the compilers of those lists anthrax-coated thank you notes. In the end, though, all this just makes me think about the name itself, which, let me tell you, was not an easy decision. It's a pastime of ours to come up with fake band names ("Memory of the Oversoul" and "System of a Ho-Down" come to mind) but when you've actually got to decide on something and realize you'll be saddled with it forever, well, things get a bit more difficult. It's like naming your child. Sure, Ebenezer Gonzopolis sounds like a great idea but can you really put that on his birth certificate? (an aside: my two all time favorite names are Rip Torn, whose name can be pondered for hours and an anchor man from Central California named John Beard, who, while not that great of a name, had the audacity to sport only a mustache. He's a personal hero).

The point is I have no point. I'm just happy we chose Birdmonster.

12 comments:

kasi said...

That's awesome.Congratulations on the nod!

kasi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kt said...

Congrats Birdmonsters, I love the Non-Required Reading series also huge Dave Eggers fan. You should also read "And You Shall Know Our Velocity". Always see him at concerts and bars around town but am too much of a nerd to say hi (for fear of gushing and embarrassing myself and being that girl).

birdmonster said...

Kasi: Thanks for the thanks. Why do I feel like I'm doing an Oscar acceptance speech right now?

Motz: BE THAT GIRL. Do it. I bet he'd be touched and slightly unnerved.

And by the way: The Christmas CD is the best Christmas CD ever. Take THAT Squirrel Nut Zippers.

Kt said...

Donde esta Santa Claus and Santa Claus is a Black Man are my favs, I like to diversify my xmas.

Anonymous said...

older brother--i resent the christmas tips about how to shop for your younger sister...have we unspokenly declared a bad gift giving duel??..congrats on the name and I'm looking forward to new years..

birdmonster said...

Bits: Naw. You hit the jackpot. But if you want a duel, then I slap you with a white glove. We're on.

ali. said...

you MUST read "a heartbreaking work of staggering genius". in fact, i cannot believe you have not already! sheesh. please please do so, for me, and for your country. p.s. i have a crush on dave eggers. don't tell him. shhhhh.

bluebird said...

maybe i'm biased, but i think the name 'birdmonster' is the greatest.

birdmonster said...

Ali: Ok. I will. I've been advised too many times to turn it down. And this time is different from the last time I said it. I swears.

Also, your secret's safe with me. Largely because I couldn't pick Eggers out of a line-up filled with Rick Flair, Minute Bol, and a MUNI driver.

Bluebird: Birdpower. All that.

Katie L. Thompson said...

My roommate used to be in a ska band called Oskama Bin Laden & the Jihad Jammers. Best or worst, I still think he should get a prize for that.

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