The original tracks of “Happy Brown Girl Vol. 2” (plus a bonus video BY ME!)

By now, everyone who asked for a copy of my CD should have received it. (If you want one, email me your mailing address; this is a labor of love I look forward to doing all year and if you’ll enjoy it, I would LOVE to share it!)

Last year, when I released “Happy Brown Girl Sings White Boy Angst,” which was covers of me singing mostly 90s grunge songs, a friend said she needed to hear the originals first. Who hasn’t heard “Come as you are” by Nirvana, I thought to myself, but it crossed my mind that this year’s album spans a lot of genres, so I thought I’d collect originals of all the songs I covered this year so you can compare and contrast. (NOTE: Scroll to the bottom for a youtube video of one of my covers.)


on beginnings and endings and just-before-endings, on love and loss and cruises

There is a lovely couple on the cruise my parents and I are taking. They’re “jus’ folk,” a Scottish compliment that I translate to “regular people.” And as quirky as my parents and I are, my parents do not put on airs (and do not forget their roots), and we really feel more at home around jus’ folk, because that’s what we are.

We were randomly seated together at lunch, and while I’m pretty sure our politics wouldn’t align, when politics popped up in conversation (I swear I didn’t do it this time), the husband changed the subject, because we all seemed to like each other. They hail from Maryland like my parents, and they’ve driven an RV along the Pacific Coast Highway (and just barely lived to tell the tale) so they knew where I live. When we talked about how you can no longer walk up to Stonehenge and they said they saw a replica of Stonehenge in Texas, I told them I had seen a photo of Carhenge, a model of Stonehenge made out of rusted cars. They wanted to know where in America that might be, and not ironically. He’s ex-military; the military straightened him out he says and they agree it’s the best thing to happen to their son, too. He cracks dirty jokes that she pretends to be offended by.

They’re on this cruise for two months. They’re making memories in Greece, Turkey, Spain, Italy and across the Atlantic. They’re making memories for her, not for him.

“I have a condition called CRS,” he says, dying for you to ask what it stands for. If you pause too long, he’ll still crack, “Can’t Remember Shit.” (more…)