Sunday, December 30, 2007

The Countdown!!!!

Dave Davies, senior writer for Philadelphia News
If I wanted to convince my friends to come with me to a Gogol Bordello concert, what should I tell them to expect?

Eugene Hutz of Gogol Bordello
Complete orgasmal hysteria

okay, you wanna fill that in a little bit?...

I mean you can tell them whatever the hell you want to tell them, really, but it's all gonna end up in a peak experience of an emotional kind...

So, in exactly 24 hours I will be stepping into Terminal 5, baby, for the Greatest Show on Earth!

If we are here not to do, what you and I wanna do, and go forever crazy with it, why the fu-k we are even here?! Daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Getting My Sleuth On

Tonight, biding time at Barnes & Nobles, I sleuthed with my cell camera. I got these two photos...The guy kneeling down was saying, "where the hell is it?" And check out the person in each pic carrying what looks to be a painting. Very suspicious....

Thursday, December 27, 2007

On the Wing

How in the hell it got to be 11:15 pm is beyond me. . . I've been lost in afghan squares and DVD episodes of the first season of West Wing. I'm addicted. I can't stop. I want to hang with Sam Seaborn and Josh Lymon and argue about what really happens in Richard Kelly's film Donnie Darko (I couldn't argue anything political so it'd have to be something in my realm).


Just to contrast the above in a sort of embarrassing way, I just have to express my despair around Bhutto's assassination in Pakistan. It's always hard to write about these things without sounding completely cliche and dramatic. I will say this: I felt a sense of utter panic when I read about this this morning, then a kind of disassociation, like I'm watching somebody else's Earth and its people go totally ballistic. I can't comprehend, in my very politically naive mind, the ramifications of this, but my guess, aside from the simple squashing of hope for a country (and world for that matter), is they will be huge.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

And a Merry Christmas It Was. . .

Pajamas (or jimjams as I think they say in Britain) + a close friend + Russian tea cookies + peppermint tea + phone calls to family and a few faraway friends + a sublime red velvet couch + Newman's popcorn + a lovely holiday movie (Love Actually) + chocolate = Christmas Eve

Pajamas + coffee + huevos rancheros and fresh fruit + the same close friend + more coffee + presents + more cookies + more chocolate + another movie (Once) + a walk + a visit with a few other close friends + the complete after effects of so much caffeine and sugar over the past 24 hours that I am writing this at 2 in the morning and can't get to sleep = Christmas!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

This I Believe

So, I tried my hand at a "This I Believe" essay for the same-titled NPR show. They didn't choose it for broadcast, but they do own it now and it will sit and collect cyberdust in their online database until the end of technology. It didn't get chosen for the reason my father said, "Much too radical for NPR"--this I believe.

Doesn't mean it shouldn't be read, tho.

Monday, December 17, 2007

To Err Is Human

The Hudson Price Chopper is the one place I go where I decide: I do not care how I look. I do not care who I see. I do not care if Eugene Hutz is waiting for me in the ethnic foods section. I will focus on my list and I will keep my gloves on to keep my skin from the germy surface of the shopping-cart handle-bar and I will get this done.

Saturday night, I'm in my go-to-the-grocery-store-in-the-winter outfit: two layers of pants (of the sweat variety), several shirt layers under my winter coat (puff city), black clunky Uggs, my hair pulled back into a last-minute pony tail.

First stop: produce. I roll in and almost have a head-on cart collision with a tall, nice-looking fellow who I have never seen before--his cart is full of healthy food (I think I even saw a plant in there). He smiles. I smile back, but I keep rollin'. I'm not here to flirt.

At the lettuce station, I try to decide between arugala and baby spinach when the tall nice-looking man sidles up to the lettuce next to me.... "Hi," he says. "How are you?"

In general, when I am out and about, I am a gregarious person. I am open to conversation. I am not shy. I am usually the one saying "hi, how are you?" I will investigate, in short, any and every slightly decent possibility. I see it as my job as a single woman--to represent, to do my part (plus, if I follow leads, then I feel I can still complain a little).

But this friendly, warm fellow tries to strike up a conversation and all I can think is: If we do start talking, and it becomes an actual conversation, and maybe he asks for my number or asks me on a date and it works out, that will mean, after all is said and done, that we MET IN THE PRODUCE SECTION! The cliche of it hits me in such a way that it takes all my might to not turn to him and say: seriously?

Couldn't he have approached me in the toothpaste aisle? Or even better, in front of the Green Mountain coffee bins?

In the midst of my very loud interior dialogue, I answer him perfunctorily, say "Fine. How are you?" You know, like "finehowareyouandwhyareyoutalkingtomeandwhatdoyouwantandwhyareyou
beingfriendlyfornoreason?" kind of way. More accusatory than anything else. "Good," he says. Then grabs a head of lettuce and continues on his way. I do not blame him in the least.

Once I realize my transgression, I try stalking him through the store, but he is heading to the registers. The moment has passed. He is done and gone.

Universe, I promise, the next time a handsome man tries to talk to me at the grocery store, I will talk back....

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Unstructured Time

First Saturday in a very long time where I have nothing planned. For some this is a joy. For me...I go through stages.

Stage 1. Wake with a childlike anticipation of the day ahead.
Stage 2. Coffee, breakfast, e-mail checking, blog tooling, and web surfing.
Stage 3. The dreaded moment: what am I going to do today?
Stage 4. Multitude of choices come flooding in.

I could:
  • organize my files (you know the ones containing all things from all times)
  • use my blue Target vacuum to suck up lint from the corners of my apt. (I bought the machine under the illusion that it would change my life.)
  • do yoga on my drafty floor
  • write holiday cards
  • read the newest issue of Bust
  • read more of The Lovely Bones
  • read any of the piled up New Yorker's that I haven't had time to crack
  • read tarot cards
  • go make copy of inmate's essay, buy him a thesaurus for Christmas (I'm guessing that this isn't the cheeriest time in CSP Solano), and tell him all sorts of positive things about his writing because the org I volunteer for says that often this sort of mentor/mentee relationship is one of the only positive things going on in their lives, that, in fact, in some cases, this is what they live for. . . and I am 4 weeks late with my response
  • think more about the above, feel horribly guilty, and, yet, do nothing
  • mull over the fact that I have huge debt that it will take me forever and three generations of my bloodline to pay off in full
  • decide I'm going to have a great day despite the above
  • recover from the 3 hours of balkan dancing I did last night on 82nd Street
  • make a list of how the folk dance crowd has not changed since I was 8 years old. There is always:
    • the guy wearing a sweatband around his head
    • a super bouncy woman that makes it hard to tell if she is really, really good, or has absolutely no idea what she's doing
    • a gentleman with a super-thick Eastern European mustache
    • the man next to you in the line who tells you "you're on the WRONG FOOT...LEFT, RIGHT, LEFT, RIGHT..." to which you respond "I KNOW!!!" because you do know and him telling you just makes you more flustered and self-conscious
    • an old Turkish couple
    • the elderly women that has your hand in a death grip, so when you do a dance that involves collective arm-swinging, you fear your hand is going to go fly off
    • several young women who have clearly been doing this for years and are amazing and you can't take your eyes off of them because of how they move and then you can't help but be jealous for how large a part dancing is in their lives and you know, as you have known many times before, that you need to move into or closer to a city so that you can do more things like this more often because it makes you feel more alive and more connected and more of everything and so you can be BETTER than them
  • do collage the way I used to, filling a whole day that way--although I was high on pot then, so it was easier to stay in one spot and get lost in the edges of a polo cologne ad, the perfect fingernail on the perfect hand of the perfect man who has a perfect woman hanging on his perfect shoulder (when I was high, this sort of stuff didn't bother me)
  • make my bed
  • shower
  • go grocery shopping
  • work on my radio piece about Gogol Bordello that is going to catapult me into public radio fame. Even if it did, I would long, more than anything, for Saturdays like this one, with nothing to do, nowhere to go, and a whole host of choices about what to do with my time.
Stage 5. Count to three and just go, do...something....

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Two Birthdays!

Two beautiful women are celebrating birthdays today! My lovely sister Larissa, and my dear friend Melanie.

So glad they were both born. My life would be something completely else without them.

Here's me and my sis in Carmel, CA, last year:

And here's me and Mel, at her wedding party in AZ this past summer:

How I love these women.
Happy Birthday! Mwa!


Once upon a time, there were three beautiful gals who knew they could be even beautiful-er. They wandered hither and yon searching for the best haircutter in all the land. From the edge of the meadow, they heard the faint but distinct pulsing sounds of rave beats, and smelled the trademark smell--a mix of specialty cheese and hair product. Could it be?

They made their way toward the music, followed the scent into the luxurious and tasteful home of the fabulous "Michael Hewitt." They thought he was a character of fables...a legend of dreams, but here they were, in the heart of his workshop. He beckoned them in, sat them down, and one by one he worked his magic. Their lives would never be the same.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Things raining down upon us

There's going to be a kick-ass meteor shower (say the scientists) late Thursday evening--Geminid meteors (you know the ones)--"a couple hundered per hour traveling across" Let's pray for a clear night (and that no one gets conked in the head).

Monday, December 10, 2007

Balkan Cafe

Slavic Soul Par-tay!

...this frie-dee, Dec. 14th, Slavic Soul Party at the Hungarian House in the Upper E.S.

These folks played on Gogol Bordello's latest album Super Taranta, and are great on their own ... catch them when you can.

Here's a description:

Fiery Balkan brass, hip-grinding American grooves, and ecstatic anthems both new and old: Slavic Soul Party! is just what it says. Brash and strong as slivovitz, these nine musicians have forged a virtuosic new brass band music in the heart of
New York City – melding Gypsy, East European, Mexican, and Asian immigrant backgrounds with American jazz and soul – and “developed a reputation for delivering a great time.” (NY Times)

Sunday, December 09, 2007

What in the Mother of Crap Is Going on in This Place?

If you are era-sick for the Eighties, liked the Eighties when we were in them, or are so young you missed them altogether (and don't mind a little synth) you will love Hector on Stilts (I recommend "4th Tunnel" and "He's in Bed"!). The very kind, very tall (hence "stilts") David Byrne-esque-ish lead singer is a co-worker of mine (and J's) and his cousin Clayton plays guitar and sings. Their voices are just lovely (plus the band in its entirety is blessed with an indefatigable handsomeness).

On Friday night, J, M, and I went to see them...FUN! (fitting since their new EP is called FunSize). And weird. New Wave in Appalachia anyone? Nope, just Ballingers, in Albany.

Maggie Mayday (listen to "Spit It Out"!) the opening band who also shares two members with HOS, was great, too. Their lead singer has a gorgeous voice. And the bass player (also in HOS) is super fun to watch.

There is lots to say about the crowd--four women dressed up as Lolita bomb shells in short-short skirts, half-shirts, stilettos, and pig tails, playing TWISTER on the floor in front of the stage; the four beer-toting dudes behind us, one of whom tried to take disgusting advantage of one of the eventually drunk Lolitas; a gal in the blingy-iest gold spandex pants I've ever seen; two punk rocker dudes with laquered multi-colored hair and eye makeup (they were my favorite); couples dressed to the nines who came in close to midnight and made their confused way across and through our social stew and headed downstairs to the source of the thumping bass--but I don't want to offend anyone or sound judgmental. It was David Lynchian to say the least--the constellation of people and moments and visual perplexities.


Friday, December 07, 2007

Experiment #1 attempt for the first time in my 0wn computer history to embed a You Tube video.

Materials: Miranda July's short film: Are You the Favorite person of Anybody?

Background: If I had a talking Miranda July doll, when you pulled the string she'd say: Be brave. Be brave.

Results: Off center, but viewable, with no change in how film affects viewer. Experiment complete.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Here Comes Santa Hutz, Here Comes Santa Hutz...

...right down W. 56th Street!

New Year's Eve! New Year's Eve! When I got my GB tickets in the mail two days ago, I felt like Charlie with his Wonka Bar, finding the golden ticket (thanks to J. for that analogy). My heart started to race; I felt the smooth veneer of the Ticketmaster tickets between my finger and thumb; I even held them up to the light. I secured them into a magnet clip on my fridge. Then checked the lock on the back door (if you break into my house, take whatever you want--my computer, my TV, my new Blue Tooth wireless head set, just please, please, please, do not take my tickets).

We are all hoping Eugene is still wearing his Santa gear when he swaggers onto the stage at Terminal 5. And not too tired from delivering presents (to all the naughty girls, of course)....