*GLASSES GLASSES GLASSES GLASSES
*Also, GLASSES GLASSES GLASSES. (No, seriously. You don't even KNOW.)
*How RIDICULOUSLY, UNREASONABLY, INSANELY brilliant he is as a songwriter
*How RIDICULOUSLY, UNREASONABLY, INSANELY brilliant he is as a person
*ACCORDION aka sexiest instrument ever
*HIS FLOPPY HAIR
*Completely unreasonable spazziness
*His skeletal skeletal veiny veiny arms
*His skeletal skeletal long long fingers
*His beautiful big brown eyes
*Reading a lot!
*His overwhelming nerdiness
*Collecting old cameras
*And his nerdy amazing blog about them
*And having his own darkroom
*How excited he gets about his encyclopedia
*Having a homemade timeline of the history of the world on his living room wall
*His (former) skeletalness
*Turtlenecks! Stripey shirts! Pocket t-shirts!
* The Manccordion™
*His "distinctive" voice
*The picture on the back of the Don't Let's Start EP
*And whenever he looks down while playing his accordion in general
*The part when he's adjusting the light in "Birdhouse in Your Soul"
*When his hair does the little flip thing like in "Birdhouse in Your Soul"
*And when he wears PAINTED-ON black jeans, like in "Birdhouse in Your Soul"
*Basically everything about "Birdhouse in Your Soul"
*"Oh hello, I'm John Linnell and I'm having Deep Deep Thoughts beyond the comprehension of your mere mortal minds."
*THE CROTCH SHOT
*The spazztastic dance in the first chorus of "They'll Need a Crane"
*When he writes things
*When he draws things
*When he puts literary references and big words in songs
*His love of coffee
*His nickname being "The Professor"
*"I don't think I have a favorite dinosaur, though I am very fond of the marine reptiles of the Mesozoic. I've got a beautiful plastic replica of an ichthyosaurus sitting on my shelf."
* "Being a guy, I'm a good griller."
*Standing up on his toes while he sings
*Bouncing while he sings
*Using words/expressions nobody uses ever
*The part of Gigantic where he's leaning against the wall practicing "Man, It's So Loud in Here"
*The parts of Gigantic where they're in the studio
*The boy cleans up nice
*His death hangup
*His aging hangup
*Constantly constantly talking with his hands
*The part of "They'll Need a Crane" where he's rowing the boat
*When he has stubble
*Being the creepiest person ever
*That whole "unreasonably depressing lyrics with unreasonably cheerful melodies" thing
*The way he wrote "Contrecoup," which is a totally brilliant song, using random obscure words in just a week
*His Apollo 18 long hair
*When he plays a grand piano
*The part in "Don't Let's Start" where he's jumping around and you can see his stomach
*The part where he sings "Chinese people were fighting in the park" in "Purple Toupee"
*The part where he sings "Wake up and smell the cat food" in "Don't Let's Start"
*The part where he sings "I can handle criticism" (the second time) in "Doctor Worm"
*The part where he sings "I didn't mean to say nightmare" in "They'll Need a Crane"
*When he says things that apparently make sense in his own head but none to anyone else ever
*His spoken-word pieces for the podcasts, particularly "Lesson 16"
*The creases around his mouth
*The Claw Hand™
*When he dances (or attempts to, anyway)
*Closing his eyes while he sings
*Looking up while he sings
*His Lucky TV Shirt™
*How he gets hung up on certain shirts and then wears them all the time in general
*Having no ability to improvise whatsoever
*When he's singing and he closes his eyes and crinkles up his nose and shows off his teeth
*The way he sings "go(es)"
*Hearing him breathe in "Nightgown Of The Sullen Moon"
*How he looks in red
*When he's sweaty
*"Where did it come from? I made it up..." as an answer to questions about his lyrics
*The State Songs liner notes
*APPARENTLY HE ACTUALLY HAS LEGS
*The part of Gigantic where he's asking about Goldfish
*The part of Gigantic where he's looking around for coffee filters
*His voice on "West Virginia" and "Savoy Truffle"
*Pushing up the sleeves to his long-sleeved shirts
*"[Flans] is Trotsky."
*"I mean the whole idea of mermaids as erotic is really weird I think because--because they don't apparently have--"
*Getting really excited about his stylophone
*"I wish I liked Slurpees."
*"Sometimes you just resent the way the other guy breathes."
*His chin-crinkling smiles
*The throwing his arms up in the air at the end of Conan appearances thing
*"Baby check me out" on live versions of "Man, It's So Loud in Here"
*His voice going up on the third verse of "Contrecoup" on "You can tell just by looking at my skull"
*When he attempts to play guitar
*Having an incredibly twisted sense of humour
*When he hums
*When his voice cracks a little
*His attempts at singing with fake accents
*His attempts at singing in foreign languages
*And also trying to learn Japanese
*"I guess the song is a metaphor. We who have nothing to 'wind string around' are lost in the wilderness. But those who deny this need are 'burning our playhouse down.' If you put quotes around certain words it sounds more like a metaphor."
*"The melody and chords were cooked up years earlier, and the lyrics had to be shoehorned in to match the melody, which explains why the words are so oblique. I mean beautiful."
*When his monitor falls out of his ear and he has to fix it
*"You know, John and I have been gettin' kind of lonesome waiting for people to call us..."
*"I usually do this one when the guitar string breaks. Right now the guitar string has not broken...So I guess you all understand what I mean by that...Uh, ok. I'm gonna do the song now."
*"And this is John Linnell! Still out in the hall!"
*How much he loves his bike
*And the fact that he was a bike messenger
*"He enjoys peanut butter much more than the average person." (What Ira Glass told me when I asked for info about him.)
*What a nerd he was in high school (as opposed to now)
*Being the Arts Editor of his high school paper
*The fact that he doesn't know how to play accordion entirely correctly
*His lumberjack shirt
*Random awkward pauses
*Pronouncing words "interestingly"
*His failed attempts at being hip
*Happy bouncy instrumental interludes in incredibly morbid songs
*The fact that he thinks it's cool to do things like use a band organ
*"It's grammatical, sure."
*"[Being named one of the Most Beautiful People is] perfectly true, and if you could see me right now, you would understand why."
*When he, very surpringly, manages to write songs that are totally rocking
*When Flans is all sharp and he's just wearing a t-shirt
*"The lyrics have defied simple interpretation, probably out of irresponsibility or laziness on the part of its young author."
*Being inexplicably embarrassed about being in a jazz band
*His fondness for wax museums
*The bridge of "I Palindrome I"
*When he swears
*When his voice is particularly Linnellian (e.g. "Dead" or "Bangs")
*Being a college dropout rebel, man
*"I think he just stayed in his room and read a lot of books." (What John Andrews told me he did during his one semester there.)
*When he wears a carpet hat
*Or a sombrero
*Or an admiral hat
*Or any hat at all really
*The fact that he came up with the idea of doing a concept EP about New York City mayors
*His bony elbows
*When he waves
*When he pushes up his glasses
*When they're doing an interview and he doesn't even try to pretend he's not bored/annoyed
*His middle name, and the way he signs autographs with it