Thursday, April 30, 2009

That's Not My Name!

So I didn't like The Ting Tings at first. That silly video with the holes through space and time, the weird dancing. But I heard "That's Not My Name" on the radio and wanted to know what it was. I heard it in Harvard Square and got it stuck in my head for a week. The video's nothing special, and I'd love for them to leave the world of sound stages and make a video with real places and people, but whatever, it's a damn catchy song.

Actually, after further searching, I found a second version of this video where they actually did go out into the world! Not a great video, but progress!

Tangent: I may be the only person in the world who hasn't seen this (it first appeared ten years ago floating around Hollywood video studios) but George Lucas in Love absolutely made my day. It is pure gold.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Believers Never Die

Believers Never Die Tour Part Deux - Tsongas Arena in Lowell

So in the ridiculous style of schizophrenic Massachusetts weather, yesterday was 94 degrees in Lowell at 3pm. This would be the time that my band of merry concert goers and I decided to show up at the Tsongas Arena to see Fall Out Boy's latest tour. In a moment of brilliance (they don't happen often) I spent ten dollars and purchased a styrofoam cooler, ice, and 60 freeze pops. So the six of us were cool and less thirsty than those around us (though we were nice enough to give a bunch of freeze pops to random people in the line that looked hot) which turned out to be an important part of the night.

After getting into the arena a little after five, we made the decision to sit in the seats, stage left, rather than go down in the pit. We were hot, and it was warm inside, and we decided that having the ability to get up and get drinks and not be crushed by hundreds of people was a valuable thing. We made the right decision.

Hey Monday was up first. As I've mentioned before, I'm not hugely impressed by them. Cassadee has a good voice, and they're not bad, but there's not much that I feel distinguishes them from every other scene band out there at the moment.

This was the point when we realized that not being in the crowd was a good thing. Because after only about an hour of being in the arena, people in the crowd were passing out from the heat. Security guards were pulling them out one right after the other, a stream of overheated scenesters and preteen girls. Someone in security had the awesome idea of trying to get the kids water - at first they were squirting water into their mouths like baby birds in a nest, but then resorted to just trying to douse them with water that they were throwing on the crowd. It seemed to help a little, but people were getting physically ill.

Metro Station was next. The first time I saw them on the RRRGLT with Cobra Starship in January of 2008, I loved their music. It was good, it had a great dance beat, and it was fun. They were just starting to get big, and focused on their playing. I have a clip from that night of Trace Cyrus thanking some girl in the crowd for baking them cookies. I went out and bought the CD, as well as tickets to the show they were going to play at the Palladium that May. However when that show happened, I was sorely disappointed: they were a completely different band. They spent the night singing to their girlfriends off stage rather than the fans in front of them. They weren't as pulled together as they had been in January. I was hoping that they would redeem themselves last night. They didn't. Now, Blake and Anthony were great. Anthony is awesome to watch while he's drumming, and he looks like he's having fun. Blake is focused on the synth and keys. But Mason and Trace need to forget that they're "rockstars". Mason was wearing sunglasses. Inside. On stage. And Trace was more focused on stripping off his shirt than he was playing the guitar. Sure, part of rock and roll is the sex appeal, but you need to actually play some music. Also, spinning the guitar over your neck once is cool. Doing it upwards of five times in one set is not. Same goes for throwing the guitar to the tech when you could just as easily have handed it to him. I like their music, but Metro Station is just not enjoyable to see live anymore. Stop being rockstars, star being musicians again.

Next, after more passed out girls being pulled from the crowd, was All Time Low. I don't know any of their songs, and have never been able to listen to one all the way through. I will admit to having some kind of irrational aversion to their music. But I was totally prepared to give them a second chance last night, and was ready to hear them play. I was excited when I saw the appearance of a hot pink bass and bright green guitar! But wow did they fail to win me over. A few minutes into their set, bras started appearing on stage. Apparently this happens a lot, as one of the techs proceeded to come out on stage and hang them all from the guitarist's mic stand. But then, they proceeded to encourage the girls to start throwing them on stage. Which just ticked me off. Especially when they got their wish, and about 50-75 bras ended up on the stage, on mic stands and monitors. Now, I decided that there are probably two kinds of girls who would do this: sluts, and impressionable young teenage girls. The sluts can have their fun, whatever, but that leaves a whole bunch of other girls who are just doing what the guys on stage are telling them to do. And that is sad. There is no reason to be telling these girls that this is okay. Because really, what does throwing your bra on stage get you? Nothing. They're probably all just thrown away at the end of the night, and hell, bras are expensive! But I was going to look past this. Because they were making me dance, and it was fun, and it was all okay. But then came the crack about some members of Boys Like Girls being at the show, and how the crowd should really ply them with blow jobs because there's "nothing like oral sex to help the song writing process" (that is a loose quote, as I have no footage to prove them saying the words in that exact order, but believe me when I say I don't think anyone in the crowd, or the band, would deny that they had been said). Now really, I'm not a huge feminist. I went through that stage when I was fourteen but it's long gone now. And yet that comment just turned me off to the band entirely. Because they know who they're playing for, they can see the fourteen year-olds with their eyeliner and tutus, and they can't not know that these girls aren't old enough yet to separate joking about oral sex from thinking it's okay. There's a right way to do the sexy, dirty stage act to that crowd, and then there's a wrong way. All Time Low was the wrong way.

But Cobra Starship was the right way. Full disclosure, Cobra Starship is my second favorite band, losing the top slot to Weezer. Yes, I own a purple hoodie. Yes, I have seen them four times. I have an autographed copy of their AP cover from the Warped Tour signing. But that is because they are awesome. Gabe Saporta knows exactly what we want, and hands it to us with a smile and a pie in the face. He commented last night that they're only able to do what they do because of the fans, who "get the fucking joke." Because really, Gabe Saporta has laid out his plans for everyone, if only you listen. He's laughing at us and with us through it all. From "Being From Jersey Means Never Having to Say You're Sorry" : "success has it's price, but can you hear me know that I'm dumbing myself down... I won't forget from where I came, but it's time to take over." Gabe has taken the entire band and has made it a mirror on the scene, from too long song titles to neon sneakers. They overdo the 80s stage sets and the keytars in response to the 80s love that the scene has clutched onto. Their songs are making fun of the "party queens" and the "girls with brooklyn haircuts," but we love them for it. This is not to say that I don't think that they love doing what they're doing. I honestly feel that this has all given Gabe and his crew the power to be doing exactly what they want to be doing. Somebody needed to be there laughing with us, and that's Cobra Starship. I absolutely love it. As for last night, they were great. Gabe's voice is maybe a little less far reaching than it used to be, due to surgery on his vocal chords back in January, but it doesn't make them any less awesome. If you haven't gotten it by now, I'm all about the live experience, how a band makes you feel when you're watching them perform, and Cobra is absolutely the most fun band to go and see. They will make you dance and they will make you sing along and you will love every damn second of it. They communicate with the crowd, and each member has their own unique stage presence. They have fun. Gabe does the sexy prancing around stage bit that the others before him had done, but the fact that he's doing it in jest makes it so much better, and far less disgusting. And when a bra got thrown on stage, Alex Suarez kicked it right back off. That is exactly how it should be done.


Next up, Fall Out Boy. I have been a Fall Out Boy fan for close to four years, but have never been able to actually go to a show. I was beyond excited, but the set started slow. There was this big projection of police riots and business suits, which was followed later in the set by Pete Wentz discussing Wall Street, and another video of how we all need to rise up and change the world of the high powered executives and change our lives etc, etc. This is another "live show experience" thing that ticks me off. I bought tickets to a concert, not a political rally. Keep my politicians out of my music, and my musicians out of my politics. BUT, I will admit that I overlooked this a little more than I would have normally, because beside those huge guys standing at the edges of the stage in SWAT team uniforms were Joe, Patrick, Pete, and Andy. Joe and Andy said a grand total of nothing to the crowd the entire time. Pete spent the first three songs looking tired and moody. Patrick came out wearing a white wig. But it got better quickly. They kept playing the intros to songs and my head kept reeling at the fact that songs that had previously been confined to headphones and car stereos were now crashing through an entire arena. I was blown away. I'd always felt that in live recordings on TV, Patrick's voice was a little weaker than it was on the CD, but I was absolutely proven wrong. His voice is amazing and so, so powerful. And they sweep you away into the show with both the stage presence and lyrics, so that when I was standing there, screaming along at the top of my lungs just like every other person in that arena, I believed every word that was flowing out of my mouth. I will never believe in anything again, I don't care what you think as long as it's about me, and why don't you just drop dead? Fall Out Boy is made for large crowds to live along with. They were amazing live.

But. I got a weird feeling. Like this is it. I've felt, since Folie a Deux came out, that "What a Catch Donnie" was written as a funeral dirge for the band. And there was this strange feeling of finality, of sadness and tiredness. I have nothing, no proof, not even a whisper that they are taking time off. I pray that they will be around for many, many years, providing me with the same music that let me get through that horrible summer between high school and college, and those times when I was pretty sure that miserable was my permanent setting. I love Fall Out Boy, and they make the music that lets thousands of kids stand in an arena and all be a part of the same, big something. But I feel that maybe they might take some time after this tour, take at least few months and cool off. Rest up and get ready for the next big thing.

They ended the night with "Saturday." This was the song that made me first listen to FOB, that awesome video with the Queen of Hearts and Pete Wentz hanging from the rafters screaming in some basement. It was the best way it could have ended.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Lazy Weekends

The weather in Massachusetts went from cold to rain to summer. It completely skipped Spring.

Yesterday was Springfest on campus. I didn't so much "go" as I did study in the general vicinity. I watched Deerhunter for a little while, listened to Asher Roth while in line for a hamburger (well who turns down free food?), and wandered by while the Decemberists were playing. In between there was a lot of orgo studying (aka lying on the grass people watching with my orgo notebook nearby).

On a completely different note, finals and tests and the end of the year are taking over my life, but that doesn't mean I don't still have time for silly internet videos. I, personally, love baking. Cupcakes and cookies and bread and pastries and big decadent birthday cakes. But when it comes to cooking, I'm more of a pasta and salad girl, with some sort of chicken thrown in. Which is why I was very excited when I found Frankie. He cooks things! And makes it look easy! He makes things like Ravioli Casunziei (which looks so good) and Focaccia! I have not actually tried making any of this yet (the stove in the kitchen in my dorm is broken - awesome) but I plan on it this summer and when I actually have my own kitchen in my apartment next year. To tie it back into the music (for this is, sometimes, a music blog) here is Frankie making French Toast with Jukebox the Ghost. Enjoy:

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

My Ears STILL hurt

I really missed rock music.

After picking up a friend, I drove down to Providence last night to see the All American Rejects / Shiny Toy Guns show at Lupo's. It began on an interesting note, as we needed someplace to park. There is a "parkade" next to Lupo's, and though I had parked there before, a sign informed me that it was for monthly customers only. I pulled in anyways, and went to talk to the man at the desk.

"Seriously?" he asked. "You come in here, you don't read the sign, you interrupt my dance moves, and you still want me to park you?" We smiled at him prettily. "Alright," he said. "But you gotta bust a move!" After a few seconds of car dancing, we paid ten bucks and got our tokens ("Remember to bang on the box if it doesn't take your token!"), parked, and headed to Lupo's. We didn't really feel like standing in the crush of people right against the stage, so we stood one step up from the floor, holding onto the metal bar to hold our spot. It was perfect - we could see over everyone's heads giving us a great view of the stage, and a tight hold on the bar kept the crowd from tossing us around.

The first band up was Vedera. Fronted by a tiny girl with an awesome voice, it was a truly great opener. They combined the normal rock guitars with some piano and really pretty vocals for a sound that was both bubbly and rocky. "Loving Ghosts" was a personal favorite, and was even on the free CD they gave out.

The second band was Ace Enders and A Million Different People. Not quite as good as Vedera, but much more typical rock music. Loud and full of energy, the crowd was stoked. It's not often that I've seen an audience get that excited over one of the openers. However, it was a pretty awesome crowd overall - excited and happy and low on the pushing and shoving. I only saw one scene-kid-hair-pulling fight, and there was no crazy pushing and shoving towards the stage. It was great. Anyways, Ace Enders (with an extra guitarist that spent half the set standing glumly on the side of the stage) really rocked and made great music. Rock music with a purpose and a melody and love. It made me smile.

Next up was Shiny Toy Guns. They recently (within the last year) replaced their female singer. I was apprehensive, but I shouldn't have been, because the new Sisely Treasure was still great, rocking out through the whole set. The male vocalist (Chad Petree) was also spectacular, with a voice that reaches up into notes so high you can't believe they're coming from his body (though I could have done without the light blue eye shadow. I'm all about boys in eyeliner, but this just looked silly). Sisely and Jeremy Dawson (who had an awesome haircut and a slightly accented voice) switched off keys and guitars and basses through some of the songs . "Le Disko" was good, though my personal favorite was "Ghost Town." Both songs had amazing energy, but "Ghost Town" made me want to go out and cause trouble.

Finally, the All American Rejects. Now, AAR has a special place in my heart. Way back in 2003, "Swing, Swing" was the first song I had ever downloaded from the internet. As such, it has been placed on every mp3 player I've ever owned, as well as quite a few CDs. I've never actually bought anything by AAR (oops) and have never downloaded anything else by them, but I felt that their singles and aura of general awesomeness were enough to warrant a show. Also, they've done a few music video with the amazing Marc Webb ("Gives You Hell" and "Move Along" most notably, the latter of which received all sorts of awards and praise).

They were good. They were loud. They put on a show. But the lead singer was most certainly messed up. It was awesome to watch him prance around the stage, arms flailing wildly and microphone cord spiraling around his body, but also sort of creepy. Unshaven and with wild eyes, Tyson Ritter was the crazy guy that you meet, when half of you wants to lick him and the other half wants get as far away as possible. "Hi, hey, come here, I'd like to talk to you, can I take you home, who are you, where are my pants, have you heard my song, wait, no come back!" It was, strange. At one point he pulled a random girl from the crowd and started dancing with her on stage. At another point he kind of writhed around on the floor. One of the guitarists (Nick Wheeler) on the other hand, looked like he was having SO MUCH FUN. All caps. He was smiling and being a rockstar and loving every second of it. It makes me super happy when bands actually enjoy playing.

In between Tyson rambling around the stage and making obscene comments, they played some songs. They were very pop rock and perfect. Tyson doesn't sound the same live as he does recorded, though I feel like that may have been due to his state of mind rather than his general singing ability. They played through their singles and hits, backed by flashing lights and adoring fans. Were they the most amazing music I'd ever seen? No. But they were fun and loud and put on a great show.

Friday, April 17, 2009

But I Love That Dirty Water...

I smell like beer and peanuts, and my hands are sticky from cracker jacks. Only one of those is something that I indulge in, but after spending the night at Fenway it doesn't make much of a difference anyways. They let up 7 runs in the second inning, but rally caps and Wally (and Papelbon in the 9th) pulled us through to a 10-8 victory.

Which brings me to Fenway music. Self-indulgent, Boston glorifying rock. The best, of course, they play after a win. "Dirty Water" by the Standells.



Also important is "Tessie" by the Dropkick Murphys. They redid the song in 2004, the year we won the World Series, and made a fabulous Irish punk rock ballad about a trolley car and loyal fans of days gone by.



But when they bring in Papelbon, one of our beloved pitchers, the entire park stands up and claps. And sings. And pretends to be Irish:


Finally, the middle of the 8th. I hate this song. But, it's tradition:

Monday, April 13, 2009

My first 4 music videos

So the Amanda Palmer video in the last post, where they sit down at the table to devour the abusive husband, made me think of something else.

There are four music videos that I remember seeing as a small child, about three or four years old. The first is "Video Killed the Radio Star." I'm not sure if this was just dumb luck, or if my father made sure for the good of my upbringing that this was the first, because it was also the first music video to play on MTV. I loved it as a small child because I looked like the little girl in the video, and because I love the space fairy thing trapped in the tube.




The second is "Mickey" by Toni Basil. I have no idea why I like this. But I remember the story my Dad told me about the record producer not wanting to put out the single, but his daughter loved the music video because she was a cheerleader, so he went along with it and put it on the radio. The power of having your father wrapped around your little finger.




The next is "Smells Like Teen Spirit." It must have just come out at the time, and the fact that I saw it is probably attributed to my brother, who also played me Alice in Chains while babysitting. We are not the children my mother expected us to be. One of these years, I really want to be an anarchist cheerleader for Halloween.




Finally, the video that started this entry, "Don't Come Around Here No More" by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. This is of course why the Amanda Palmer video reminded me of all of this, because at one point Alice turns into a cake and everyone crowds around to eat her. This video gave me nightmares as a three year-old. I kept dreaming that I turned into a cake and that strangely dressed party goers chopped me up and ate me. No lie. I remember liking it at first because of Alice in Wonderland, and then being freaked out. This one I blame on my father.



These are the four videos that defined my knowledge of music videos. Who knows what that means for the ones I'll make.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Amanda Palmer and Thomas Dutton

Bought two vastly different CDs this week, and loved them both.

Okay. Facebook and Twitter have taken over so much of the internet that starting that sentence without any kind of subject didn't even seem weird anymore. Fail.

The first was Who Killed Amanda Palmer. I've talked about Amanda Palmer before, how I think she's totally crazy and how I love her for it. This record is produced by both Palmer herself and her friend Ben Folds, with an accompanying story by Neil Gaiman (isn't it nice to have friends in high places). The record is slightly schizophrenic, running from slow, melancholy songs to the fast paced, devil may care "Oasis." My favorite, however, is her cover of "What's the use of wondrin'?" by Rodgers and Hammerstein. Her voice, which she usually throws into huge scaling screams and gravelly condemnations, is here so perfect and pretty that it makes a song about domestic violence gorgeous. However the song that to me screams Amanda Fucking Palmer is "Leeds United." Heavy handed piano, slightly broken voice, horns, and huge bold statements make the song so distinctly hers. The website also plays upon the murder theme, with a book and pictures and mystery. It's a great, great CD. Also, the music video for "What's the use of wonderin'?" is beautifully done, directed by Michael Pope, and to great not to put here. I LOVE the shot of Amanda rounding the corner of the door around a minute and thirty seconds in, with the blurred and soft shot as the piano keys fall:



The second was Razia's Shadow, a musical created by Thomas Dutton, the last remaining bit of Forgive Durden. It's set in an alternative universe, about a perfect civilization created by an intelligent community that revolves around love and... stuff. Basically they've created a Utopia, and a disgruntled youth who feels he's being ignored burns it down. The woman he loves leaves him, as well as the entire community, to rebuild far away from him in the light, and he is left to reign over the darkness. A century later, as foretold by an oracle, two lovers, one from the light and one from the dark, find each other in order to reunite the two lands, but tragedy befalls them. The plot is a little sketchy, and things seem to progress at very strange time intervals, with the set up taking about four songs and the ending happening in only one. The action is sometimes too fast and at other times too slow. But it is gorgeous. The songs are sung by an impressive cast of current musicians, from Max Beemis to Brendon Urie to Greta Salpeter. Salpeter's voice stands out among the mainly male cast, and she is the perfect princess. Dutton himself plays the two male main characters, which makes sense as they have similar story lines and loves. The orchestration, done by Dutton's brother, is truly impressive. It sometimes reminds me of Danny Elfman and at other times of something grander, prettier, and more classical. It is absolutely not what I was expecting (some amalgam of scene songs into a trashy musical) and it really something completely different from everything else at the moment. Dutton is touring in support of the record, hitting Boston on May 6th at Cafe 939. I'm ticked because that's the same night as my organic chemistry final, and so I cannot see this amazing stuff live. I'm not even sure how it would happen live, as they cannot take the 13 or so contributing artists all on one tour, but I would love to find out.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Tokyo!

I went into Kendall Square today to see a showing of Tokyo! I'd heard about it on Victoria Asher's Twitter (ahh, the age of technology) and checked out when there were screenings in Boston. Today was the first day, so I grabbed a friend from home and drove through crazy traffic (and Roxbury) to get there.

The movie is split into three films by three notable directors, all of them focusing on some aspect of Tokyo. The first was Interior Design by Michel Gondry. This was my favorite of the three films. It centered around a young couple, struggling to find jobs and an apartment in Tokyo. After losing their car and spending time crashing at a friend's place, the main character is so lost withing herself, and finds so little meaning in her life, that she transforms. It gives away the ending to tell you what she transforms into, but it is so simple and well done that her transformation gives her life a meaning it didn't have before.

The second film is Merde. It was my least favorite of the films, focusing on a vengeful sewer-dweller who terrorizes the citizens of Tokyo, first with small acts like stealing cigarettes and licking schoolgirls, but finally by throwing grenades around the city and murdering scores of innocent citizens. He is captured, and only a lone French lawyer who greatly resembles the sewer-dweller (who calls himself Merde) in his crazy beard and milky eye, can communicate with him. Through a drawn out court scene (which did have a very interesting and appealing use of four camera angles in one shot) we find out that the dweller finds the Japanese disgusting and that he wants to kill them all. But the film itself had no point and left too many questions. Why was he there? What language was he speaking and why could this lawyer communicate with him? Why did he only eat chrysanthemums (a symbol of the Japanese imperial family) and cash? Why was there gratuitous full frontal nudity? These are questions that the director, Leos Carax, never answers. Sure, it's meant to make us think further about the movie (destruction of royalty and capitalism perhaps, and fear of the unknown) but it's obnoxious in its grotesque nature.

Finally, Shaking Tokyo by Bong Joon-Ho. I'd seen The Host by Joon-Ho and liked it, so I had high hopes for this one. It revolves around a hikikomori, a shut-in, who survives off of delivery in a meticulously organized apartment until the day that the pizza delivery girl collapses on his floor during an earthquake. He finds buttons tattooed on her arms (Sadness, Hysteria, Headaches) and one on her leg (coma) which wakes her back up when he pushes it. Yet somehow this also sends everyone else in the city into their homes as shut ins as well, until the protagonist overcomes his fear of leaving the house to try and find the girl again. It was a cute idea, and the buttons do tie in a little bit again at the end, but I feel like the amazing idea of buttons for emotions was basically ignored, an idea that was wasted. It had potential but it was over too soon and let me down.

I do love, however, that in French, "directed by" is translated as "realise pres" (or at least it was in this movie). I like that the idea is "realized" by the director. It's a great concept. Overall it was a good movie, and interesting, but more than a little weird.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

What if God Was One of Us?

This song reminds me of driving around in my dad's Ford Bronco when I was little, still young enough that I had to be in the back seat.

I don't know why I was so surprised by how pretty Rivers' voice was when he started singing. I've spent all of my teenage years listening to him sing, but I guess the lead in instrumental had me prepared for the higher pitch of Joan Osborne. And then he started singing in a lower, softer voice, and it was really very sweet. The back and forth between the three is nice as well at the beginning, a quick glimpse into recording. It takes a little while to get to the music, but it's a nice video.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Say Anything about nerve damage

I'm really feeling Say Anything lately. It's kind of where I am emotionally. In Defense of the Genre is really good, and I've been obsessed with "Retarded in Love" lately.

WebMD just told me I have peripheral neuropathy or cervical spondylosis. I'm pretty sure I just pinched a nerve.

Who wouldn't want to wake up to a band in your cupboards (also, gratuitous afikomen reference a few days before Passover):




Also, this video is hysterical (with gratuitous Henry Winkler):


Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Smash it Up - New Cobra Starship

"I'm not street but I do what I gotta do / So what you got a crew, I got a crew too."

Not the most inspiring lyrics, but the whole point of Cobra Starship is that it's fun and fast and loud, not profound. And I can see myself jumping with the crowd as they play this, so it passes the test.

Pete Wentz is the Only Reason We're Famous


(It's also on their myspace if you're sketchy about downloading random stuff. Just listen to it and dance/flail.)

Tiny Tiny Music

I do not have an iPod. I have a Sansa Fuze, and I love it. But I was browsing around on the Apple store this morning (What? I like Final Cut, okay?) and found this.

It's the new iPod shuffle. And I have a few problems with it. First, I would lose that thing. All the time. It's too tiny. It's smaller than that girl's pinkie finger. Also, the controls are on the earbud cord, which would tick me off. I have found only one pair of earbuds that I've ever been able to stand (off of my really old iRiver), and I rarely use them. I'm a headphone fan. But I couldn't use headphones with the shuffle because I wouldn't be able to switch songs or change the volume. I understand that if you're using a tiny mp3 player you probably wouldn't be using huge headphones, but it's still annoying. Also, I don't want my mp3 player to talk to me. I find that a little strange.

And why is the Mac voice a man while the PC voice is a woman? What is the point of that? Is there a point to that?

I'm in the campus center right now and the fire department has a robot dog that is currently driving a mini firetruck around the atrium. I have no words.