December 2nd, 2013

krazy koati

You gotta groove to the vinyl till the record makes the final sound

Still, it was the weekend after bunny_hugger's birthday and we hadn't been to Ann Arbor yet and ... well, why couldn't we go to Ann Arbor on a Sunday? So we did, driving down on a trip that timed oddly well with her brother calling, so I just paid attention to the road while she got anecdotes of life in Brooklyn down in-between the calls dropping. He told us to skip Ashley's for lunch, even though we were already planning to have Stilton fries, to go to the Fleetwood Diner instead. He promised us they had the best vegetarian burger in some impressively large area. We resolved to try it some other trip.

Ann Arbor's got this nice little parking deck that offers flat-rate parking all day weekends. It turns out this Sunday at least that flat rate was zero, a state of affairs that left me confused and a little worried we'd get back to see the car impounded. It didn't happen anyway. And we did go to Ashley's and the Stilton ries, even against her brother's advice, or perhaps direction.

Now, there is a reason not to go to Ann Arbor on a Sunday, despite it not being football-packed and despite the parking deck being free, apparently. The trouble is a lot of the shops in town close early, at 5 or 6 pm, which when you get up around lunchtime the way we do on weekends and live an hour away mean we were a little squeezed for time to go see things, and faced a potentially big stretch between when the last shops closed and when we could reasonably be hungry enough for dinner. If there were any appealing movies playing at the Michigan or the State we could've done that but they didn't have anything promising-looking.

Still, we visited Encore Records, Ann Arbor's big used record shop. Well, they do new records too, but there's much more stock in old records. We also learned from studying it that there had been a record (and TV repair) store in the same location back in the 60s, when bunny_hugger's parents were frequent visitors. Whether they're the same store renamed is a mystery to us, but they do have a bunch of signs and posters and the like from the old name.

Of course I found something weird: an album of songs about the telephone, released by the Bell corporation in 1976 in tribute to the telephone's hundredth anniversary. This was in a section of albums recorded by and for corporations, some of them for obvious reasons of self-promotion, some of them for corporate self-celebration, and all of them just a wee bit weird. For example, a recording of Fiat celebrating forty (or whatever) years in the United States market makes sense enough, but, why did it have a Formica corporation copyright? bunny_hugger was more sensible, snagging a printing of a Wall of Voodoo album she already had but with a different matrix message (a bit of text in the bit of blank vinyl at the center of the disc that I never knew was there but turns out to contain production information and, sometimes, cryptic messages).

Trivia: In the 55 days following the Comex board's 21 January 1980 limits on the buying of silver, Herbert and Bunker Hunt --- who were trying to corner the metal --- suffered paper losses of over two billion dollars. Source: The Big Rich: The Rise And Fall Of The Greatest Texas Oil Fortunes, Bryan Burrough.

Currently Reading: Inside the Atom, Isaac Asimov. This is incidentally the book that got mentioned in Asimov's FBI file. One sharp Commie-watcher noticed that the Russian-born Asimov claimed Russia had civilian atomic power plants before even the United States and wasn't that suspicious, Mister Hoover? The FBI eventually figured it had better things to do, by which I mean dig up dirt to blackmail civil rights leaders with instead.

PS: November 2013's Statistics, or what my mathematics blog has been up to lately.