Wednesday, February 10, 2010


This year, time of year, at dusk in Bothell, a vast murder of crows descends.

From every corner of the sky, thousands upon thousands of birds congregate, cawing and flapping their wings as they alight on trees, telephone wires, and buildings. It’s straight out of Hitchcock, even though, for the most part, the birds seem benign or at least uninterested in pecking your eyes out; still, it’s pretty freaky, albeit in a wonder-of-nature kind of way.

Which reminds me that Jen and I went to see the grunge-band pioneers Mudhoney the other night; we got free tickets through a guy I know who works for New Belgium Brewery, who were sponsoring the show in celebration of the rollout of their new beer, Ranger IPA; (the reason for the association being that, like the crows, Mudhoney makes one hell of a racket.) I enjoyed tying a flannel shirt around my waist and watching people crowd-surf the moshpit in front of the stage; it felt like 1991 all over again (even though, at that time, by far and away my favorite band was post-punk legends, fIREHOSE.

It seemed, from the crowd reaction, that a Grunge revival is in the cards. It’s been about 20 years since the heyday of the sound, so I guess the time is ripe. Think about it: punk, which arguably was a kind of roots rock revival got big more or less two decades after Elvis and Buddy Holly hit the scene; in the late eighties, the hairdo metal bands were arguably doing a kind of neo-sixties thing; in the nineties, it was the seventies all over again.

Fortunately, I still have a handful of Pendleton shirts, so my wardrobe’s taken care of; in a sort of scary way—but less scary than the crows—these shirts are actually from the Grunge era, although all of them came from vintage stores at the time.

Everything old is new once more, except me and the birds.


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