Archive for the ‘Austin’ Category

Shoegaze Sunday: The Telewire’s “Feels Like Fire”

Sunday, September 8th, 2013

Another Austin Shoegaze band (“band” in this case evidently being one guy, Stephen Thurman) shows up. “Feels Like Fire” sounds like Shoegaze by way of psychadelia with a little Devo thrown in for good measure.

Restaurant Review: July 27, 2013: Prima Pizza Pasta

Saturday, July 27th, 2013

(Here’s a restaurant review in route to its place on

Prima Pizza Pasta
6001 W Parmer Ln (the same corner as the HEB)

Once upon a time, this space was a CiCi’s pizza. And it closed. How hard can it be to make a profit at a pizza place when your primary ingredient is cardboard?

So I was somewhat skeptical when new pizza place went in there. Though situated at a semi-major intersection at Parmer and McNeil, it’s as far as you can get from the center’s anchor store (HEB) and still be in the same center. So how good could their chances be?

After more than a year: So far, so good. It really helps when you serve excellent pizza.

Things started off right with the garlic cheese bread, which was excellent; a fellow diner said it was better than that served at Reale’s, which is high praise indeed. Also good were the free rolls. (Alas, the calimari remains nothing to write home about.)

The pizza itself remains excellent, an exemplary example of the new York style soft thin-crust pizza; I’d have to compare it back-to-back with Reale’s to see which I prefer. In fact, I like the pizza so much that I frequently pick up a slice or two on Fridays. At some point I also want to try some of the non-pizza dishes, which have received a fair amount of praise from fellow diners. And the service from our waitress was also excellent, with many an preemptive soft-drink refill.

If you like pizza and live anywhere north, you should definitely make an effort to check out Prima. So far they seem to have remained undiscovered, and have plenty of uncrowded seating to enjoy some delicious Italian food.

Classical Allusions: Thermostat Edition

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

Actual discussion with female co-worker:

Her: It’s so cold!
Me: (Looking at handy digital thermostat above my desk) It’s a balmy 73.4 degrees.
Her: I keep my apartment at 79.
Me: There’s just no pleasing those of you who hail from the realms of Tartarus.

Shoegazer Sunday: Experimental Aircraft’s “Meet Me on Echo Echo Terrace”

Sunday, June 9th, 2013

Austin’s own Experimental Aircraft are another band in the shoegaze/psychedelia/post-rock netherworld.

“Meet Me on Echo Echo Terrace” is from their album Third Transmission off Graveface records, run by Ryan Graveface of Dreamend and Black Moth Super Rainbow.

One caveat: They seem to have the same video (or variations thereof) for all the songs on this album.

Spectacular Sunset

Saturday, June 1st, 2013

Austin had a spectacular sunset tonight, and I happened to catch a picture of it behind the capitol.



if I hadn’t been driving, and had something other than an old iPhone, I could have gotten even more spectacular shots…

Shoegazer Sunday: The Asteroid Shop’s “Destroyer”

Sunday, March 10th, 2013

Austin’s own The Asteroid Shop presents “Destroyer,” a video full of stop-motion plastic dinosaur goodness.

I may have to catch one of their live shows one of these days…

This Is My Shocked Face

Friday, January 18th, 2013

Whenever the topic of performance enhancing drugs come up, I’ve always half-seriously said that my working assumption is that all professional athletes are doping, a position that renders me immune to disappointment when someone tests positive for a PED

However, looking at the Wikipedia entry for “Doping at the Tour de France,” it appears that my supposition is in fact pretty much correct, at least for cycling. In particular, not only did every winner between 1991 and 2007 test positive at one point or another, but in 2006, every top 10 finisher was either caught doping, admitted doping, or accused of doping. And the very earliest races were soaked in alcohol, ether, strychnine and cocaine.

Was it Jon Stewart who said “The first sign that Lance Armstrong was doping when he won the Tour de France? He won the Tour de France!”

Steven Utley, RIP: 1948—2013

Sunday, January 13th, 2013

I just received word from Jessica Reisman:

Molly let me know that Steve passed last night at about 10:40 pm, eastern. His family was with him.

I’ll miss him.

As will we all.

Utley announced to his friends that he had been diagnosed with Type 4 cancer in his intestines, liver, and lungs, and a lesion on his brain on December 27, 2012. On January 7, he sent out an email saying that he was losing his motor skills and designated Jessica as his literary executor (and hopefully she’ll be able to get some of his swell stories back in print). On the morning of January 12 he slipped into a coma and died that night.

Disasters of Event Planning

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

November 16 next year, there will be a UT home football game (against OSU) and a Formula One race in Austin on the same weekend.

What could possibly go wrong?

The biggest winner? Hotel and motel owners in Bastrop.

If you plan on attending either of these events, you might want to make your reservations now…

Pictures from the 2012 Armadillocon

Monday, August 13th, 2012

Continuing my acclaimed series “Lawrence’s Continuing Efforts To Justify The Purchase of a Digital Camera,” here are pictures from the 2012 Armadillocon:

The lovely and talented Urania Fung, who joined us for lunch with…

…her sister, the lovely and talented Cynthia Fung.

Fung & Fung, together at last. “Soon to be a new hit series on the CW!”

Master of Toast A. Lee Martinez showing off his spiffy Cthulhu vs. Godzilla T-shirt.

Andrew Wimsatt, already looking like his brain has fled.

Jayme Lynn Blaschke standing over Andrew, with the interior of the Austin Renaissance looming in the background like a Lovecraftian tomb (assuming the tomb had balconies and accent lighting).

Michael Sumbera, Scott Bobo and Ed Scarborough, hanging out in the bar.

Mark Finn. “Penis goes where???”

Picture from Family Feud, where the pros kicked the fan butt. “How could the topic be ‘Vampire Novels’ and not one of us thought of Dracula?”

it wouldn’t be an Armadillocon photo gallery without the requisite Stina Leicht Pantone Hair Color Reference Shot.

Now with Slightly Smugger Expression.

Editor guest of honor Liz Gorinsky, who appears to have part of Fry’s non-paraodoxing time travel algorithm tattooed onto her bicep.

Jayme Lynn Blascke, Troyce Wilson and Martha Wells. Maybe it was just this spot that made people look tired.

Con Chair Sara Felix taking a break from the madness with noted lush Scott Bobo.

With folded plate…

…and without.

John W. Campbell Award nominee Stina Leicht with Zillion time best Artist Hugo nominee John Picacio.

I had Stina lean in close so I could see exactly where her hair color matched his shirt.

“Sure, I’ll chair Armadillocon! How hard could it be?”

John “Two-Time Hugo Nominee” DeNardo

Ladies and Gentlemen, the worst picture ever of Joe R. Lansdale!

This time, his brain is fried.

Michael Sumbera and Rich Simental.

Mark Finn and Night Shade Press head honcho Jeremy Lassen, who needs to hire a better shipping department.

Matthew Bey with two people whose names I should remember.

Gabrielle Faust, looking remarkably calm and poised considering the horrific, unspeakable doom that was about to befall her. Best not to talk about it…

Denman Glober, who finds me endlessly entertaining.

Rob Landley, once and future chairman of Linucon.

Bradley Denton, who had a wee bit of a tough 2011.

Doug Potter, showing off a T-shirt with a drawing by Doug Potter, from a book illustrated by Doug Potter.

And another Armadillocon slouches to an end…