My Five Favorite Iron Maiden Songs, Listed

I have thought about this quite a bit lately.

  1. The Number of the Beast
  2. Wasted Years
  3. Fear of the Dark
  4. Two Minutes to Midnight
  5. Women in Uniform

None of these will surprise any die-hard Maiden fan, except for #5. This was pre-Bruce Dickinson IM – some other f*ckin’ guy was lead vox, and it’s actually a cover of a late 70’s Aussie band named Skyhooks tune of the same name. But the video introduces Eddie, the group’s famous mascot, and it’s actually the first IM song I ever heard. It was enough to get me intrigued.

Iron Maiden is covered extensively by strings/classically trained musicians – which comes as no surprise to me or any serious IM fan. IM’s musicianship was top notch, and owes as much to Paganini as it does any rock n’ roll precursor. When I think of Iron Maiden I think of bassist Steve Harris’s right hand, bringing out those fabulous notes in 8th’s and even 16th’s or whatever.

At any rate, here’s my favorite cover of an IM tune – this of “Fear of the Dark” by the appropriately named Greek brother-sister duo “String Demons”

Rock on

\m/ \m/

I’ll be back when someone breaks the Seventh Seal,


Defeatist Writing Tips

Nothign to do with writing, but I found this amusing!
Nothing to do with writing, but I found this amusing!

OK Pendejos, apropos of nothing here are ten reasons not to write, in no particular order:

  1. It doesn’t matter if you write today or not because your stuff is shit.
  2. Half of all submissions are rejected unread
  3. Three-quarters of all pieces published are never read.
  4. There are now 2,000 writers for every one reader. (i.e. Fatal Supply/Demand Error)
  5. That kind, “personal” rejection letter you got? It’s a form letter. Just a better macro.
  6. That kind, “personal” rejection letter you got? It’s the editor’s last. They quit right after they sent it. They can’t take it anymore either. “Fuck My Life” they said, then went back to a 2-year college for something in IT.
  7. Most of the writers you admire and look up to … ain’t getting paid either.
  8. Seriously, if writing is not the primary source of income in your household you should just quit and get a real job.
  9. If you have a “real job” you should not write. You should go to the gym because you look like shit from hunching over and staring at that screen for four hours adding/removing commas.
  10. There is no “conspiracy” dude, your stuff is just not that good.

Read that! Wow! I am am particularly bastardly tonight!

I wonder what raccoon tastes like.

Ditto Panda!

At any rate, read and enjoy, I’ll be back with more of my hero-gets-the-girl/puppy-licks-the-face brand of joy in awhile.


Reasons to Fight (In Hockey)

“Putting on the Foil!!”

I read somewhere once that the difference between Americans and Canadians is in how they view the 1977 movie “Slap Shot”. Americans thinks it’s a charming B-Movie starring Paul Newman. Canadians think it’s a documentary.

At any rate, the NHL draft was held this past weekend. I got to see my Bruins involved in a couple of classic “Three Quarters for a Dollar” trades (in which they happily parted with the dollar), and It’s hotter than two rats screwing in a wool sock here. Of course all this put me in mind of that other great Canadian tradition: Hockey Fights.

Fighting, in hockey, his a “code”, the unwritten rules by which gentleman conduct themselves when engaging in a contest of buffets, these gallant affrays of fisticuffs between two evenly matched contestants. However, you can’t just go sucker-punch someone – that would be soccer, or the 70’s, neither of which is admirable. There has to be a reason for said contest to take place, justification for the action to follow. Here in no particular order are ten perfectly acceptable reasons to drop the gloves – as expressed in hockey vernacular:

  1. “They were takin’ liberties with our guys.”
  2. “Gotta set the tone.”
  3. “Need to clear some space for our skilled players. Gotta step up.”
  4. “If the refs aren’t going to call anything we gotta police things ourselves.”
  5. “Gotta get the momentum back in our favour”
  6. “It’s our barn.”
  7. “I was just the fight away from the Gordie Howe Hat Trick, so … ” *
  8. “Gotta earn some respect out there”
  9. “Gotta take their fans out of it”
  10. “Gotta get their attention”

Bonus: “If you can’t beat ’em in the alley, you can’t beat ’em on the ice” – Conn Smythe.

For the non-Canadians who follow my blog, Conn Smythe was the founding father of the Toronto Maple Leafs and if the Leafs haven’t been successful lately – it’s not because of Conn Smythe. In fact the old man would be so distressed if he saw the current program he might punch his way out of the goddamn grave and go “set the tone” himself.

True story: All bloggerly-bravado aside I was not a particularly pugnacious and only got in a few fights. (I was a “skill player” and have “typist’s hands.”) But I did get in one in Medicine Hat, Alberta about a hundred years ago. The linesmen separated us and led us off the ice – I was just about to step off the ice to dressing room when someone shouted “Get off the ice, long hair!” and I looked up to see a little old lady – not a day under 78 years old – leaning over the ramp. As I looked up she threw a crumpled up paper cup with deadly accuracy and hit me in the head. The linesman escorting me off laughed so hard he lost his balance and almost fell.

I guess she thought I was “takin’ liberties” and she had to “step up.”

Stay frosty blog followers, I’ll be back when the puck drops.


* The “Gordie Howe Hat Trick” is a hockey phrase that means the player mentioned had a goal, an assist, and a fight all in the same game. A regular “hat-trick” – less noble – would be the scoring of three goals.

… The Last Ten Women I’ve Known

Is actually the title of an “Anibal Cinq” graphic novel By Jodorowsky & Bess featuring the titular character – a cybernetic secret agent. (“Anibal Cinq” translates to “Hannibal Five” in English.) I always liked the title. I think Heavy Metal magazine reprinted “The Last Ten Women I’ve Known” in the late 90’s but I’d have to look it up.

But in the meantime there’s this:

I practically shit my pants watching this.

I hope to God this is comedy/satire and not a pending documentary.

I deny everything.


Flashback Friday: I Was Eighteen and Didn’t Care About Much

1984 Called and reminded me - I was a goof
1984 called and reminded me – I was a goof.

… other than partying hearty on the weekend. In Alberta at the time you could get a case of 12 “Beer” beer (Stubby bottles with “Generic” yellow label that said simply “Beer”) for $5.50. I think I made $8-something an hour – slightly more than double minimum wage, so you do the math. I had a lot of good weekends. Just looking at that pic makes me want to crank up the Quiet Riot again and crack a cold one.

No girls, though. Subsequent testing has revealed that they were allergic to me. I knew you’d ask so I thought I’d just get that out of the way now.

As for the story behind the picture: I worked for Alberta Parks and Recreation in a Provincial Park. Someone had called in about an injured bird – One of the Park Rangers had gone out and brought back this juvenile Blue Heron that had been hit by a car. He took the picture while I restrained the bird. It did bite me BTW – it had a vise-like grip on my thumb at one point. Calls were made and the bird was taken to an avian rehabilitation centre a half hour away where it’s injuries were assessed as too severe to be treatable and sadly, it was euthanized.

I have an ex-girlfriend – Van Halen actually played her High School before they were big. Her FBF’s are way better. But she grew up in Cali and I grew up in S. Alberta in a place with a net pop. of 380 (including strays) at the time and this is what you get.

Screw all you rich kids,

I’ll be back