Cool Pope is here and everybody’s losing their shit. I suppose that’s all right. He went to Congress and pleaded with them to accept immigrants. Do you know how stupid that sounds? Cool Pope doesn’t care. He’s gonna tell you the truth right to your face, America.

***

I just got back from Austin the other day. That’s not really important, except that I got to go to Austin and spend time there eating at places like G’Raj Mahal and catching up with Jessica in between long stretches of time listening to lawyers talk about new and exciting things happening in the magical world of employment law. (If I’m being honest, it was pretty exciting. Spokeo v. Robins is going to the Supreme Court, y’all!)

Austin, as a whole, is very similar to Nashville. There are some slight differences. For example, latitude and taco quality. Just a few small things like that. Sixth Street is like downtown Nashville if it had been constructed to 18-year-old me’s music tastes. I’m not even going to try to unpack that sentence. It’s been a long week.

***

There are overwhelming numbers of guns and dogs on Tinder. I honestly think there are more profiles with guns and dogs than without them. Someone should study this.

***

On my way to the airport—4 AM Wednesday morning—there were seven of us in the shuttle. I think. Round about seven. Anyway. The driver was way too animated and very excited about something. The guy riding shotgun played along and so we all got treated to extensive discourse about the world economy, which is about to have a very special week because the Iraqi dinar is going to be revalued. This means the millions of dinar the driver bought on Amazon (“For about sixty or seventy bucks!” he says) are going to skyrocket in value and make him a genuine USD millionaire. (As well as anybody else who buys a shit tonne of dinar before this weekend.) I’m not giving him enough credit. He spoke with conviction and clarity. He cited sources. I believed this dude, right up until he mentioned the fact that certain world leaders had to sign off on the currency revaluation. The leaders that needed to do so were the Presidents of the United States and China, and also the Pope. The Pope!

Dude riding up front says, “That doesn’t sound right. What does the Pope have to do with this?” And that’s when I knew the answer was “absolutely nothing,” because that’s exactly the kind of thing an asshole conspiracy theorist would come up with, and then I remembered how I heard about people buying Iraqi dinar as gifts, which I always thought was strange. Now I think it’s wasteful and strange.

No one’s going to become a millionaire by way of currency speculation. I’m sorry. I know it’s a letdown.

The driver also digressed for a bit about the Vietnamese dong, which had nothing to do with anything and was therefore about as relevant as Mark Kozelek’s string of petty beefs. I hear he’s got a new one coming out called “The Mailman Was a Real Dick to Me”—anyway. The driver said, “Vietnam is currently the world’s strongest economy,” which I wasn’t prepared for and therefore audibly snorted at, since he had already said “dong” four or five times by then, which I realize is not funny at all unless you went to middle school in the U.S., but since I did that exact thing, it makes me chuckle.

***

“Careful how you move, Mac, you dig me in me back

And I’m so pilled up that I rattle…”

I thought for sure that I was going to put “Revolution Rock” on the playlist this week, so I listened to it a bunch and then decided it didn’t really fit.

I had a blurb written about how I put Whitney on the playlist because the DJ at the corporate party I was at on Monday night (a goddamn rager, no lie) put her on during the part of the night when everybody is still amped and also very drunk, and it felt wrong to watch a room packed full of middle-aged industry professionals grind on each other and throw their hands in the air while Whitney Houston expressed her desire to dance with somebody. I’m not sure why it struck me that way. Dude probably played lots of dead artists. Anyway. Then I forgot to put a Whitney Houston song on the playlist, so how’s that for a story?

I met a chef on OkCupid who taught me about Gun Club once, while she was showing me her record collection. She told me she used to be a punk singer in a semi-famous band, enough so that they toured Japan regularly. She wouldn’t tell me the name of the band. She also played Meat Is Murder on vinyl and I was blown away by how different the sound was. I knew it would be different, but the dated tinny sound of The Smiths on CD is super huge and warm on vinyl.

Later, she tried to give me pills and got annoyed when I wouldn’t take them.

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