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The phrase "Hardly Strictly Bluegrass" must have been inspired by the 90's Austin, Texas band Bad Livers. They broke up in 2000 just before Warren Hellman launched his awesome free festival in 2001.

Today we attended WonderCon at Moscone Center in San Francisco. Apparently we did the right thing skipping Saturday -- 20,000 attendees!! Stars from the X-Files and other famous shows were there. We thought it was cool to see Lou Ferigno -- he still looks awesome.

We spent quite a bit of time there watching short films and film trailers (bring on Iron Man) and watching artists draw. Simon has a very keen interest in this. We wound up getting a Batman graphic novel and some custom Star Wars lego pieces.

Just saw the Mother Hips at the Starry Plough in Berkeley. Yep, they still rock.

The corporate media seems gets less creative all the time. I've always liked SFGate.com (the San Francisco Chronicle) but I despise their new design, which closely resembles CNN's new garish format.

The Seattle Boegers (Peter, Catherine, and Zoe) just went down to visit Kirk (the lobster diver) and Cara Jo in the Virgin Islands. As we can see, Zoe made some new friends. The California Boegers hope to get down there very soon.

Simon just tested for his yellow belt... and you can see him earn it.

"The Future and You" is an audio podcast that I download religiously. Created by Stephen Euin Cobb, the show discusses macro-humanity/real world trajectories with famous science fiction authors. Definitely something to geek out to in a useful way, now weekly.

Gotta hand it to AC Transit and Alameda's Traffic Commission... they are determined and persistent!! They really really really really really want to put this bus stop where nobody else wants it... the neighbors don't want it.... the school parents don't want it.... the crossing guards don't want it.... click here for more background on the matter.

I'm not trying to be a hep music journalist here but since I do have friends that like to keep up vicariously with my music adventures, here are some the things I listened to this year... in no particular order:

Queens of the Stone Age - Era Vulgaris

Era Vulgaris is far and away my favorite record this year and I consider it to be at a level of genius on par with the Flaming Lips' Pink Robots album. Some might snark, especially old school Queens fans. My old friends who have gone a little soft are horrified. And even Joshe Homme, the Queens mastermind, would squirm at any hint of pretention.

Patsy and Dick bought us a Scooba, the floor-cleaning iRobot. Simon and Henry named it "Mecha-G" in honor of the giant robotic monster built to defend Japan from the real Godzilla.

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