June 2, 2004

* Happy Birthday to Charlie Watts

"Charlie is incredibly honest, brutally honest. Lying bores him. He just sees right through you to start with. And he's not even that interested in knowing, he just does. That's Charlie Watts. He just knows you immediately. If he likes you, he'll tell you things, give you things, and you'll leave feeling like you've been talking to Jesus Christ. They say he's a dying breed, but with people like Charlie, they must always have been rare. Genuinely eccentric in the sense of having his own way of doing things. Just to put it on a very physical plane: At the end of the show, he'll leave the stage, and the sirens will be going, limousines waiting, and Charlie will walk back to his drumkit and change the position of his drumsticks by 2 millimeters. Then he'll look at it. Then if it looks good, he'll leave. He has this preoccupation with aesthetics, this vision of how things should be that nobody will ever know about except Charlie. The drums are about to be stripped down and put in the back of a truck, and he CANNOT leave if he's got it in his mind that he's left his sticks in a displeasing way. It's so Zen. So you see what I mean about who the hell can I possibly play with after this guy with such a sense of space and touch. The only word I can use for Charlie is deep. - Keith Richards, 1988

* Jessica Cutler, aka washingtonienne, talks with the Guardian.

* Not surprising: Enron traders caught on tape.excerpt:

"Four years after California's disastrous experiment with energy deregulation, Enron energy traders can be heard – on audiotapes obtained by CBS News – gloating and praising each other as they helped bring on, and cash-in on, the Western power crisis.

"'He just fucks California,' says one Enron employee. 'He steals money from California to the tune of about a million.'

"'Will you rephrase that?' asks a second employee.

"'OK, he, um, he arbitrages the California market to the tune of a million bucks or two a day,' replies the first.

"The tapes, from Enron's West Coast trading desk, also confirm what CBS reported years ago: that in secret deals with power producers, traders deliberately drove up prices by ordering power plants shut down."


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