Baboon Pirates

Scribbles and Scrawls from an unrepentant swashbuckling primate.

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Location: Texas, United States

Thursday, February 02, 2006


No Other Word For It, Really...

Ever have one of those weird occurences that were triggered by a long chain of unrelated events?

Here's one for you. We had really high winds roll through downtown recently, causing a whole bunch of the newspaper vending boxes to blow over. They tend to be chained to one another, so when one tipped over, others followed.

As a result, quite a few of the paper vending boxes on my block got relocated to the leeward side of the building. They might have been moved down towards the center of the block on the windward side, but we've been having a crew clean the outside windows on that side of the building, and they've got that area cordoned off.

So, the Houston Press paper box that normally sits on the corner is nowhere to be found when I leave the building Wednesday evening. I normally grab a copy of the Press on Wed. evening, 'cause by the time I get in on Thursday morning, they're mostly all gone.

It's a rainy, blustery night last night, though, and I don't feel like walking up to the next block to find a copy. I just huddle under the inadequate bus shelter until my bus arrives, and head home without my weekly newsrag.

I like to cross over into Tranquility Park in the mornings before work just to grab a bit of peace & quiet before heading inside to greet The Man. Plus, I can grab a copy of the Press from a box on the far corner, if there's any left.

With the Ken Lay/Enron trial in full swing, though, you can't swing a cat in Tranquility Park this week without hitting half a dozen journos from all over the country. They're all camped out 24/7 in hopes some aggrieved ex-Enron employee decides to pull a Jack Ruby at some point.

So, I cross the street a block early, dodging a huge collection of paper vending boxes that have congregated there. There's not one, but two Press boxes there, so I pick the first one, hoping there'll still be a copy available.

Yup, there sure is! There's an added bonus, too!

Two CDs in jewel boxes still in the wrapper, sitting underneath the top copy of the weekly newsrag. I figure it's some sort of giveaway, kind of like when AOL crams their "drink coasters" in your mailbox, so I ignore them.

Something caught my eye, though. I could swear that CD label had the word "Undulating" on it...

I walk back, open the box, and sure enough, there's two CDs entitled "Baxter" from Brad Thompson and His Undulating Band sitting there.

Now, Brad's Undulating Band & I go way back, sort of... Don't really know the man personally, but a student group in college that I was chairing at the time hired his band for an event back in the early 90's and we ended up hanging out for a bit. I got a copy of his newest CD at the time, and absolutely grooved on it. He's been playing small gigs at coffeehouses and bars for ages now, and really ought to get a shot at bigger audiences.

Connecticut Yankee and Danger Ranger both like Brad Thompson, so I snag 'em both, figuring I'll keep one, and let them fight over the other one. Turns out the CDs aren't albums, just a couple of CD singles.

Who knows why those CDs were in there. As far as I know, BT&HUB weren't in town for a gig, so they shouldn't have been "salting" the CDs here and there. I may drop him a line via his website just to ask.

Of course, there's always the possibility that, in a final unrelated event, El Capitan gets arrested for possession of stolen property, namely two CDs he was observed removing from a paper vending box...

UPDATE: Figured it out!

According to the song lyrics (helpfully printed on the inside liner), the song's about J. Clifford Baxter, the Enron vice chairman found shot to death in his Mercedes near his home in Sugar Land in Jan. 2002. Baxter quit as vice chairman of Enron after conflicts with other Enron execs over the irregular accounting being used to loot billions of dollars. The death was eventually ruled a suicide, though I have to note that Ken Lay hung out with the Clintons, who could easily have loaned him a copy of 'Vince Foster-izing For Dummies'. (Hee hee! Haven't tweaked my liberal readers in a while!)

The lyrics are full of references to Lay, Skilling and other Enronites. Looks like someone's staging a low-level musical protest of the proceedings over there across the street in the Federal Court...