November 26, 2002
The Nerds Live On

Brian's musing set off a whole train of thought about the Ashtray Boy song "I Am Sponge" which is a song told from the point of view of a sea sponge. The band's Web presence seems kind of sketchy, but I thought this picture was pretty fun.

Their 1996 (!) tour diary includes some amusing musings on the "Ajax nerd" and if you lived in Chicago in the mid-90s, you know what the narrator is talking about:

This is a qualitative description of a subculture of indie enthusiasts--they are almost always bespectacled males in their early/mid-20s. They are always friendly, posing Chicago-gossip-related questions with bated breath...

I am not a bespectacled male, but I expect I was indeed some brand of Ajax nerd, especially when they had their own store down on Chicago Avenue. During the first year I lived here, we made a monthly trip to Ajax, where I spent my carefully budgeted entertainment dollars on CDs, zines, and 7" records.

The label is gone now, and the store is, too. But, as we like to say here at Bells and Whistles, the nerds live on. Here's a recent article about what Tim Adams is up to these days, and a link to his new label.

Posted at November 26, 2002 07:33 PM