Monthly Archives: June 2008

Make it Mine (in a Banana Suit)

Jon Baron walked into the office on Tuesday and said, “I just helped a banana into the building.”

I thought it was nice that Jon had a little banana friend that only he could see. We all need to let our imagination run wild sometimes, and if that leads to fruit-centric fantasies, then so be it.

But then Jon explained that the banana was in fact a man in a banana suit who came to pass out free fruit. There were apples and peaches and angelcots and nectarines and other yummyjuicy goodies that our company thought would make us happier and healthier and cost them less in health care than free chips and soda.

The banana man came around to our desks to give us, what else? Bananas. And to my suprise he didn’t look the least uncomfortable or embarassed by his long, yellow suit. He was a proud fruit man. He believed in organic, locally grown produce and he didn’t care who knew it!

If there’s one message that our Prophet Mraz has consistently pushed, it’s that you have to do what you love, no matter how silly or ridiculous other people may find it. For this guy, that passion included a banana suit. Bananas. Not money or fancy cars or… guns. How did I get from bananas to guns? Doctor Who. If you can’t make all those connections, I can’t help you.

It’s you who’s got it all,


More Mraztastic Baby Names for a Friend

When our friend, Steve, was getting ready for his first child, I carefully compiled a list of baby names worthy of a son being born to such a Mraz geek. Now, our friend Jon Baron is getting ready for his first little bundle of expenses (and joy), and I want to give him the same honor.

Jon is just as geeky as Steve, but not in a Mrazy way. Just in the normal “I like to talk about components and quote Monty Python like Scripture” way. He can’t argue with that because he doesn’t have the password to edit this blog. Ha!

Steve knew he was expecting a boy, so his list was tailored to fit a little Whedonesque son. Jon is expecting a girl though, so I can’t recycle any of those names. Here’s what I came up with from scratch. Any children born to any friends after this will get leftovers.

Because a daughter born to a Baron should have a regal, royal name:

  • Contessa
  • Dutchess
  • Lady

Because Jon may want to think back to his childhood summers in Norway:

  • Danica
  • Elsa
  • Margit
  • Petra (also a good geek name from the Orson Scott Card ouvre)

Because you can’t go wrong with Harry Potter names:

  • Hermione
  • Luna
  • Lily

Because Jon knows his Simpsons almost as well as I do (okay, maybe even better):

  • Marjorie
  • Sherri/Terri (if only he was having twins!)
  • Lunchlady Doris (I suppose this one could cause her to be pigeonholed into a career)
  • Malibu Stacey
  • Lisa (hey, it’s served me pretty well all these years)

Because his daughter may grow up to be a Whovian (I volunteer to take her on a pilgrimmage to see David Tennant):

  • Romana
  • Sarah Jane
  • Billie (a much better name than Rose)
  • Gwen (or maybe save that for the spin-off… er, second child)

Because Jon is well-traveled:

  • Alexandria
  • Cairo
  • Safari

Because Jon insists on stealing one of the two names I would find acceptable for a girl, and I’m thinking maybe I can distract him and push him onto another Beatles-inspired name:

  • Eleanor Rigby
  • Penny Lane
  • Strawberry Fields
  • Lucy Sky
  • Julia
  • Martha Prudence (no Girls Gone Wild worries with this one)
  • Blackbird
  • Savoy Truffle (She would have her own show on Food TV before her twelfth birthday)

Or how about names of real people associated with the Beatles:

  • Yoko
  • Stella
  • Sean
  • Dhani

Because Jon loves Peter Himmelman:

  • Dixie

But if I have to suggest the best ever baby name for a precious little darling girl being born to a geek, I have to go with:

Serenity Firefly Baron

No way could she go through life with that and not become a free spirit, a rebel artist, a compassionate thinker, a brilliant leader and pretty much better in every way than all her peers. Not that having Jon as a dad doesn’t already ensure that, but I think you should give a kid all the advantages that you can.

The one with the bright eyes, well she laughed her way inside this music box, stored away in the corner of my heart,

Lyrics to Jason Mraz’ “Details in the Fabric”

Mraz Steal ThingsCan anyone decipher the phone message that bookends “Details in the Fabric”? Other than, “Hey, what’s up” and then, “you’re an island of reality in an ocean of diarhea”. The diarrhea bit is crystal clear.

It’s a bit strange to have such a beautiful, calming, peaceful song end with that sort of chunky imagery. I mean, I’ve had some days recently where I felt like I was about to boil over and scream or cry or at least make a very grouchy face, but then I put this song on and follow the instructions.

Details in the Fabric
Jason Mraz

Calm down
Deep breaths
Get yourself dressed
Instead of running around
And pulling on your threads
And breaking yourself up

If it’s a broken part, replace it
If it’s a broken arm, then brace it
If it’s a broken heart, then face it

And hold your own
Know your name
And go your own way
Hold your own
Know your name
And go your own way
And everything will be fine

Hang on
Help is on the way
Stay strong
I’m doing everything

Hold your own
Know your name
And go your own way
Hold your own
Know your name
And go your own way
And everything will be fine

Are the details in the fabric?
Are there things that make you panic?
Are your thoughts results of static cling?
Are there things that make you blow
Oh, no reason, go on and scream
If you’re shocked it’s just the fault of faulty manufacturing

And everything will be fine
Everything, in no time at all

And on and on…

And it works. I get calm. I feel like things really are going to be ok. My little problems aren’t so bad after all.

But then that ending. It’s clowny. It’s goofy. And maybe that’s exactly what it’s supposed to be. Maybe our Prophet Mraz is so comfortable being sexysilly and geekychic that when he creates something truly powerful he has to take the edge off with a little Bushwalla. (I assume the call is coming from Bushwalla. Any other possibilities?) Update: Yes, the liner notes do identify the caller as Bushwalla.

Maybe this is one of those situations when you cry just a little, but you laugh in the middle. Except here the laugh comes at the end.

Don’t it feel so nice?

Up, Up, Up and Away – Over to the Gratitude Café

Gratitude CafeJason sings about it in “Make It Mine” and if you find yourself in the San Francisco are you can make a table there yours, at least for lunch or dinner.

The owner of the Café Gratitude, Matthew Engelhart, sounds like a true prophet’s prophet. His bio says, “What he shares isn’t positive thinking, it is about developing the ability to go beyond our own petty wants and desires to connect with the grandeur of all of life.” That’s pretty much the message of Mraz, don’t you think? I can see why these two could be good friends.

The Café Gratitude has two locations in San Francisco, one in Berkeley and one in San Rafael. I’m not sure which one our Prophet prefers, but they all offer the same healthy, uplifting, environmentally-sound dishes. Personally, I prefer gooey, chocolatey, sugary foods that my body doesn’t need, but I can get behind a good cheese platter or fruit smoothie too.

I want to celebrate the whole world,