Friday, December 30, 2005
There always comes a moment when we're out together and the candle gutters low when you look at me through the flickering light: a look of longing and knowledge and trust, and something else, something I don't think I'll ever know because it's a part of your secret that I can never be privy to and cherish you all the more for. And in that moment, those precious seconds after I've been babbling for long minutes about everything and nothing and my thoughts and words trail off into awkwardness, when I look up at you and our eyes meet, I think that I could spend the rest of my life trying to decipher the mystery in your eyes.
Wednesday, December 28, 2005
The match flares in the night and I watch as the fire consumes the stick, beginning its steady march towards my fingers, the yellow-white flame leaving ash and char in its wake. The edges of the flame are blue, as if it's sad to have to destroy the wood, sucking the life out of it to fuel its passion. Is that what we are: matchstick and flame, burning briefly in the night until we're exhausted? I shimmy my fingers down the match, struggling to hold the stick as long as possible while the flame continues its progress. But soon the heat becomes unbearable and I drop the match. It falls down, down, down, lighting the darkness it passes through before winking out far below, burning itself to death in a silent scream.
Really, isn't all art pointless, from a utilitarian perspective? You could make a case for aesthetic pleasure having some sort of utility, but I'm guessing most would not see that as a necessary thing. In any event, there isn't any deep reason for why I like this...it just catches my eye and I think it looks neat. I think one of the problems with art is that people try to make it so much more: into commentaries on ethics, politics, race, gender, whatever you want it to be about, when all it really has to be is genuine expression and individual aesthetic taste. People get all snobby and crazy because they want to show that they "get it," that they're hip and cool and intelligent and all that bullshit. The way I see it, either something appeals to you or it doesn't. And yes, there are many more levels on which art can operate and on which it can affect its viewers, but the core of it should be accessible to anyone, whether 4 or 84.
Tuesday, December 27, 2005
No, not too long at all.
We go to meet the dinosaurs, our grinning pals whose eyes are both empty and wise. Beneath that sightless gaze we walk in silence, our fingers entwined in the only conversation necessary, the conversation about everything and nothing that started the day we met, the greatest conversation of my life. Our footsteps echo in the empty halls, and I swear I can hear the rumblings of distant thunder, or is it just the wind sweeping through the sheets? I don't know, and when you look at me I forget to care because I'm lost in the memory of the first time you looked at me, really looked at me and saw me: a frightened child looking for a friend, the mirror image of yourself.
I'm actually quite happy.
It's rather odd...this is probably the first time I've been able to say that, and it hasn't been contingent on external factors (ie, superficially happy because I'm in a decent relationship that masks any insecurities I might have). I'm happy with who I am becoming, I'm happy with most of the work I've done and happy with the fact that I'm THIS close to finishing my Bachelor's Degree (eight years and counting!). Granted, there are things (and people...well, a person) I would like to have, but things will happen in their own time and in the way they are meant to, and so long as I stay true to myself, I'm confident that everything will work out for the best.
Friday, December 23, 2005
Girl: I did.
Professor guy: Yeah? Did you visit Buchenwald?
Professor guy: Did you visit one in Germany?
Professor guy: Did you visit one in Europe?
Girl: No, it was in America.
Professor guy: Are you talking about a summer camp?
--Fordham University, Rose Hill
Overheard by: Maggie B.
Girl #1: So he was like, "We found out you're allergic to yeast." And I asked, "Is that why I keep getting yeast infections?" And he goes, "No, you probably just need to be more hygenic after having intercourse."
Girl #2: Oh my god.
Girl #1: Yeah, I know. So I was like, "WTF, man? I clean my cunt!"
Girl #2: Wait, why'd you say "WTF"?
Girl #1: Because saying "fuck" would be rude.
Overheard by: Elisabeth
That last one I just have to comment on, because it touches on something I hatehatehatehatehate...internet acronyms. As a pretty long time net nerd (and onetime slightly obsessive gamer), I've seen most all of them including |337 5|D34|< (and if you don't know what that is...please don't ask me, although here's a hint...what I typed there spells, "leet speak"), and they all tend to irritate the piss out of me. But what's even worse is the tendency that some people have to say the acronyms, as if they're actual, acceptable words. "lol" becomes "lawl" or "ell oh ell," "rofl" becomes "roffle," and so forth. What the hell is happening to society? THOSE AREN'T GODDAMN WORDS.
That is all. Oh, and happy day-before-the-day-before Christmas!
Thursday, December 22, 2005
So I spoke to Stef very briefly today; actually I think I kinda upset/pissed her off with a crack about blondes being dumb. It's silly, I suppose. And, especially in light of the Buddhist books I've been reading through recently, I shouldn't have said it. But by the same token, I ask myself...do I really owe her an apology? I happen to be a sarcastic person, it's true. Sometimes (ok, frequently) these things slip out of me. That's the way I am, or have been, and perhaps I should try to change that; when I was reading up on INFJs I noticed that it was one of the character flaws they should look out for. Still, there's a part of me that refuses to apologize for being sarcastic. And then there's another part that says to watch my pride and quit being an ass. But then, maybe I need to be a bit more of an ass at times. I'm really tired of being the sensitive, nice guy, when all it gets you is an empty room and a lot of spare time to read. Of course, if you're too much of an ass you get the empty room because you're an ass, so maybe I should call and just apologize. But then why should I have to apologize, I haven't done anything wrong? And so forth, ad infinitum in my head.
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
I look at the flower and think of you, wondering where you are and what you're doing. Are you thinking of me? Could it be that somewhere, our thoughts are meeting and we're together? Or was I just another face, another smile along your path to self-realization? Will we ever be more? Can we ever be more?
The flower sits on my desk. I meant to give it to you, but never could. I water and feed it, so I'll always have a reminder of you. And when the blooms wilt, I'll shepherd the flower in hopes of another season of beauty.
Man #1: ...Shit! Why did they have to strike during the winter? Right before the holidays, no less.
Man #2: Well, the transit guys need to get paid more and they need other things that I'm not too clear about.
Man #3: Fuck 'em! I don't give a shit what their problems are! Everybody has problems, not just them! They want more money? Well, then they should have thought about that before dropping out of high school! Bunch of lazy fucking losers!
Man #4: Hey, I work for the MTA.
Man #3: Well, then: fuck you, too!
Woman: Is this the line for the LIRR?
Man: No, it's the line for free watermelon.
--WoodsideGoing to be another lazy day for me. Tomorrow I do have to head down to the network to shoot some stuff; luckily (thanks to a roomie mentioning it) I realized I don't have to walk the 80 some-odd blocks, as the Metro-North train stops at the Harlem-125th Street stop before Grand Central, which is about 10 blocks from me. I'm sure it's disturbingly crowded, but oh well. So instead of 80 blocks I'm looking at about 20 blocks of walking, which is much more palatable. And then, maybe the strike will end today.
Ha ha ha ha.......yeah, that's enough of that thought.
Tuesday, December 20, 2005
Fay Wray (72%)
Shania Twain (71%)
Jennifer Lopez (71%)
Amrita Rao (70%)
Celina Jaitley (70%)
Deborah Kerr (70%)
Julianne Moore (70%)
Lucy Liu (70%)
Cameron Diaz (69%)
Rock Hudson (62%)
Barack Obama (57%)
Michael J. Fox (56%)
Alec Baldwin (56%)
Al Pacino (55%)
One of the things that occurred to me as I read it, and part of the reason why I love Before Sunrise and Before Sunset (movies, if you don't know) is that there are so few people in this world that you run into with whom you share a genuine connection. When you're younger (and this I'm stealing shameless from one of the movies...Before Sunset, I think) you think that you'll always feel some spark with everyone you meet, and finding that special someone will just happen. As you get older, you realize that a real connection is actually the exception that proves the rule, and you come to treasure it all the more in the past relationships you had (assuming there was at least one instance, which might not be the best assumption to make) and in the ones that come along your journey (or, at least, I've realized this).
So when you find someone and you feel that with them, hold onto that. Not in a crazy/grasping/selfish sense, because you shouldn't be looking for validation in a relationship with someone else. But enjoy every moment as if it is the last one, and tell and show that person how much they mean to you. In doing so, I believe you can make every moment an eternity, no matter where the two of you end up going.
There's a comment from Memento that just popped into my head too; Carrie-Anne Moss asks Guy Pearce about his memories of his wife, and he says something to the effect of, "Your memories of people aren't really linear; they're more like scattered images," which is precisely what's going on onscreen; it's a montage of images of his wife, one with the sunlight streaming in through the window on her face, one of her hands while she washes the dishes and so forth. The more I live, the more I realize that life is made up of all these little beautiful moments, waiting for us to be open enough to experience and cherish them.
|How You Are In Love|
You take a while to fall in love with someone. Trust takes time.
In relationships, you tend to be a bit selfish.
You tend to get very attached when you're with someone. You want to see your love all the time.
You love your partner unconditionally and don't try to make them change.
You stay in love for a long time, even if you aren't loved back. When you fall, you fall hard.
Monday, December 19, 2005
It's too bad that I forget where I got that pic from. I was thinking picturesofwalls.com, but it's not a wall so I'm not sure. In any event, it's a neat little bit of graffiti.
One of my roommates and I chatted about something along these lines briefly yesterday; whether or not we believed in the concept of a destiny. I think there's a number of different paths your life can take, but I also strongly believe that the choices we make can impact the way our lives turn out, and that it can be possible to miss positive occurrances and paths if you don't (refuse to) open yourself to the opportunity.
As an interesting aside, the mandarin character for crisis is a combination of the characters for danger and opportunity. Just a neat little tidbit to think about.
I like to think that there is no such thing as a completely negative experience. Even the things that happen that are most heartbreaking and emotionally draining at the time can be turned into a positive experience through meditation and reflection. At the same time, I say this having gone through relatively few such experiences. I like to think that when I'm faced with them (I'm not going to kid myself and type "if I'm faced with them"), I'll be able to hang onto this view, because I think it would be the most conducive to emotional growth and release, as opposed to sinking into one of those horrible depressions when you don't do anything with your life for months or years.
Sunday, December 18, 2005
Translation: I don't love you
Lately PostSecret has been getting a bit on the ehhh side; not to denigrate the secrets that people continue to send in, but from my aesthetic point of view. When I first found the site, it was guaranteed that one or two of the postcards every week would not only express an incredible vulnerability and beauty, but it was also clear that a lot of time and effort went into the execution. I suppose it's somewhat horrible to look at it that way, but I do think part of the point of the project was that aesthetic side to it. There's a book out that I flipped through at Barnes and Noble the other day that's very neat; I might consider getting it as a coffee table book.
You know, if I had a coffee table.
Saturday, December 17, 2005
The picture's a little dim but my camera's phone sucks balls. Yay for wrapping shit up! The ribbon is sexeh too. These people better appreciate my talent...that's another reason why I slather the presents I wrap liberally in scotch tape, so they have all the more time to admire my wrapping job while trying to figure out how the hell to open it.
That, and I just like being a pain in the bee-hind.
Friday, December 16, 2005
"For Tibetan Buddhists, because karma affects everything, there are no chance occurences. It is no accident, for example, that you are picking up this book. As you read this sentence, all of your past actions, your present thoughts, as well as your intentions for the future have brought you to this specific intersection of your life where you have opened a book talking about a timeless way of life that was first introduced in Asia some 2,500 years ago."
On a more serious note, I do like to believe in the underlying sentiment of the paragraph. It just feels right to me. I like to believe that there are reasons why you meet people when you meet them, why they are a part of your life for periods of time and then not and then sometimes they come back into your life, and why sometimes you don't meet people when you want to meet them - it's because you are or aren't meant to at that time, for whatever reason...because you're not ready, because they're not ready, or maybe just because.
My biggest fear.
Looking at it now it seems so fucking retarded and pretentious and melodramatic AND unoriginal, but what the fuck, who cares. I actually posted this late last night/this morning, but thinking about it just now I felt it needed something a little extra.
And then, while I was lying there, something else blew into my mind that I'm going to try to reproduce in Paint...we'll see how that goes.
Thursday, December 15, 2005
|Your World View|
You are a happy, well-balanced person who likes people and is liked by others.
You question whether many conventional views on morality are valid under all circumstances.
You are essentially a content person.
Sometimes, you consider yourself a little superior.
You are moral by your own standards.
You believe that morality is what best suits the occasion.
On another note, I just grabbed my jazz songs offa my iPod and have been listening to them for the past while. Diana Krall + John Coltrane + Harry Connick, Jr = 1 chill evening.
Whoda thunk it?
Wednesday, December 14, 2005
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
In the candlelight I see you, an alabaster statue in the bed next to me. I touch you, leaving trails of love where my fingers pass and I wonder what it feels like, if you enjoy my touch as much as I enjoy touching you. “It won't last,” a voice says, but it doesn't have to. “It doesn't have to,” I repeat. You roll over and your hair falls across your face and my fingers are moving before I can stop them to brush it away. In between the flickers I can see your heartbeat, drawing me in and pushing me away. The room is cold and my skin is pebbling and I burrow down into the covers with you, seeking your warmth, wondering what tomorrow will bring. But tomorrow is tomorrow and today is today and I'm screaming on the inside, screaming in joy and surprise at having found you, even if it's just for this minute between the hours.
Monday, December 12, 2005
|Your Christmas is Most Like: The Muppet Christmas Carol|
You tend to reflect on Christmas past, present, and future...
And you also do a little singing.
I fucking love Muppet Christmas Carol. It's the greatest rendition of A Christmas Carol I have ever seen. I have no problem watching it in the middle of June if I feel like it. And if you think otherwise, bollocks to you.
Sunday, December 11, 2005
"We have to find the courage to take off our emotional clothes." Ms. Cook elaborated on that danger in speaking of the essential fear that crawls around in most performers' hearts, an anxiety that in a curious way may also be a motivating factor in the desire to become a performer: "We feel that we're not enough, that the world doesn't want us."
"The truth of this insight was illustrated before our eyes, and it was a fascinating process to watch. Erin Morley, a soprano with a bright, silvery tone, sang "With You," a flowery ballad from "Pippin." "I don't hear you letting us in," Ms. Cook said, and tried to strip away all the mannerisms Ms. Morley had been trained to use in recital. When she started in on the song again, Ms. Cook stopped her virtually before she started: "I can still see her gathering herself to sing," Ms. Cook said, to the audience, and once again implored Ms. Morley to let her real self into the song, and invite the audience with her. "You don't need to do that," she said, referring to the performing stance Ms. Morley kept donning like a costume. She reiterated her encouraging mantra: "You are enough.""
"When performers first step onstage, they may be looking for validation, for approbation in the form of nourishing applause. But the lesson Ms. Cook came to teach was that artists achieve their peak when they learn to stop proving themselves and simply, to borrow the Shakespearean phrase, let be. It's their humanity we respond to in the end, their ability to strip away the self-consciousness that locks us inside ourselves, and reveal the stuff that really boils in our souls."
I've noticed that so many of the actors I know and have become close to at one time or another are also among the most insecure people I know. I could go all amateur-psychologist and espouse theories about how people become actors in reaction to some perceived lack of attention or love in childhood, and there might be a point there but it isn't really what I wanted to talk about.
There are few things I've encountered that irritate me more than a person with a beautiful voice who doesn't do anything with it. Josh Groban, for example. Technically, he's incredible. But when he sings he's just making noise; there's nothing actually behind it. Then you look at someone like Elaine Stritch, a woman who's voice left her somewhere in the 1970s, and yet, when she sings you don't care because she brings a whole new element to the song; she brings herself, she opens a part of herself to the audience. That's where real musical theater lies, and that's what every great performer in musical theater brings to a production and to a role, no matter how big or how small.
Saturday, December 10, 2005
To me, the basic premise of Big Fish is the question of how much like your parents you are or become - in this case, father and son. What's beautiful about the end of it is that throughout the whole movie, Billy Crudup has spent so much time (in reality, the majority of his character's life) wondering who his father is, seeing him as this total stranger. And yet, at the end he finds that he is like his father after all, that his father was inside of him all along, just waiting for him to have the understanding and the need to bring it out. In telling his father his last story, he finally begins to understand his father for the first time in his life.
It's true. You never realize what an impact your parents make on you until the day comes when you do something or say something that they always do or say. But at the same time, I wouldn't say you're destined to literally become your parents, because you will have different experiences than the ones they had. Your parents give you a base of ideas and beliefs. What you go on to do with them is your choice.
Shadow art; Park Slope, Brooklyn
Click for story. Looks hella cool. I think I'll take a trip out there this week, walk around and see what I can see. One quote from the story:
"'I think that public art is important,' said Mr. DeCastro, who once owned a gallery. 'It expresses what people are feeling in society at the time, and it puts it out there. It's not like a museum, where things are hidden away for 20 years.'"
Friday, December 09, 2005
Hopefully she got it. I guess if I don't hear from her in a week I can stop in again just to double check, something I might just do because...well...she was CUTE.
Thursday, December 08, 2005
Yes, I am Canadian, I do love hockey, and Bobby Orr is the greatest player to ever play the game, just so you know.
As I noted above though, I have a real issue with the Leafs. First of all, let me preface this by saying I grew up in Toronto in the 80s, when the Leafs were a big steaming pile of crap. No prospects, few good players (who would get traded away the instant they fucked with management) and year after year of unremitting failure, the kind that grinds down your spirit and makes you into a baseball or football fan, or makes you start cheering for the Habs because they're the antithesis of the Leafs.
Cue the 90s and some good times (interestingly enough, coinciding with the back-to-back World Serieses of the Jays and the Argos winning a couple Grey Cups). Gilmour, Andreychuk, Potvin and Pat Burns all roll into town and the Leafs have some decent seasons and runs in the playoffs, never quite being good enough to get to the Cup Finals. Cut to the mid-late 90s when Pat Quinn comes in. A couple definite and a couple probable Hall of Famers are also on the teams, and the Leafs continue to be decent but just not quite good enough.
This wouldn't be a problem if you qualify success by making the playoffs. The Leafs have done that for quite some time now. But if you measure success by Cups, or at least Cup Finals, then it sure as hell is a problem. The Leafs aren't good enough to go that far, and the sooner they recognize that, the sooner they can get going blowing up the current team and building again.
Of course, the biggest problem with that is that the Leafs have never drafted well. They've done a decent job with a pick here and there (more luck than anything else, if you ask me), but in terms of being able to draft a team...no. Not since the Original Six era, when teams had a virtual lock on players developing in their backyard (though the Leafs STILL managed to miss players). So even if they did start trading vets away and piling up picks, they'd probably end up with a roster full of Drake Berehowskys and Scott Thorntons.
Hence the love/hate. I'm pretty resigned to the fact that I will die long before the Leafs win another Cup. I just wish I didn't have to put up with all the delusional Leaf fans who think they're just one or two pieces away. Yeah, provided that one of those two pieces is, you know, a GOOD TEAM.
She's got a blog that she doesn't update much and a couple other areas, one for her writing and one for these little comics she draws. I also wanted to reprint one of her poems because I really like it:
Bring your school books outside
i want to tell you about a friend i had.
i want to sit in the damp grass and wring my hands
and say "This is bullshit,
everything anyone ever tells you is going to be bullshit
especially this kind of thing
i mean this,
this is true."
and mean it
like i sometimes do.
I want to push the hair from my eyes in a wise way
and have you look upon me in awe
for that gesture
while i pretend not to notice
and maintain a steady level of passionate speech.
I want you to know how honestly i've felt
i want to guide you out back to tell you all the world's Truths;
because i'm too lonely and mean to seduce you with my body
and because maybe this way
you'll never happen to see the truth
Wednesday, December 07, 2005
A couple highlights:
"We're producing too many people," Mr. Steele said, "many of them poorly trained or moved into the field without the connections or relationships necessary to make their transition to a career possible. It's as if medical school were graduating people without giving them internships at a hospital."
"Twenty years ago, you didn't sense the kind of urgency these kids have now," said Mr. Schlegel, who represents many successful New York theater actors, including Jefferson Mays and Jayne Atkinson. "Now they think if they don't get signed by an agent right away, they've failed. They never think they've got to learn the ropes a bit, get seasoned. They want to know, 'Where's my TV series? Where's my film audition?' It's wrong, of course, but that's what they think, and in a business where we fall all over the young ones, you can't blame them."
Sometimes it's easy to forget that in show business, and in the greater scheme of life, a year is really not a very long amount of time. The other day I was sitting with one of my friends and talking about the fact that it had been 3-4 years since we had graduated, which is both a fair and an insignificant amount of time. Fair in the sense that since then, both of us have done a number of projects, good and bad, and insignificant in the sense that there is still so much potentially ahead of us.
It always shocks me when I talk to people living back in Toronto about the state of affairs back there; the handful of people I've spoken to make it sound so easy to get a call from an agent, when I've never had so much as a sniff from one here. Not even a, "Quit sending us your shit, we're not interested," note. A part of that is because being on the visa I'm on, I can't really do a whole lot of paying jobs at the moment, so I haven't been able to capitalize on Morty's as much as I might have liked to. Hopefully I'll be able to change that next year, when I FINALLY finish up my BA (9 years after finishing high school, awesome!) and get off a student visa or get deported.
I also find it helpful sometimes to remember a quote I read in this big Julliard book that details the history of the school and is loaded with quotes from alumni. It's a quote from Kevin Kline, and it goes a little something like: "When I graduated from Julliard I knew how much there was that I didn't know, and that's all any school can give you."
In general when it comes to education, the idea that once you're out of school you're "done" learning is the worst thing you can think. You have to always be pushing yourself because if you don't, no-one else will. That's why so many of the people I went to school with have left the city, because they couldn't handle that part of it. It's difficult, because you need to be honest with yourself and evaluate how your career is progressing, but you also need to determine whether or not this is really something you must pursue, if you could not be happy doing anything else in life. Me, I don't really know. Right now, yes, this is what I have to be doing. But a year from now, or 5 years from now that could change. You have to be open to that possibility, just as you have to be open to the opportunities that will come your way.
I have to keep believing that opportunities will come, or I'd probably quit and go home. Hell, I've already had opportunities come my way, and I'm grateful. Now if only I could convince my parents, I'd be set.
In any event, the last person arrived at around 12:30; I'm pretty sure we didn't start shooting until 2ish. Knocked out 4 promos in about 4 hours with a short break for lunch. Honestly, wearing all the Roca shit I think I look so ludicrous. First of all, it's not really my style of clothing and second of all it's fucking HUGE on me. Nothing they sent was smaller than a large, and I've got your typical Asian frame, so it's basically like some bastard thought to himself, hey, how can we make him look even smaller onscreen?
Had to run at 6 because I'm doing a reading for a new musical by C. Y. Lee (wrote the original book of Flower Drum Song). First of all, the musical itself is sorta...not the best. Well, I'll be honest, I think it sucks. I mean, the music is ok, the lyrics are decent, there's just no point to the thing. Personally, I don't find there to be much in the way of character development and so many of the songs feel like they're just thrown in so there's a song, instead of developing as a natural extension of the scene. It's nowhere close to Rodgers and Hammerstein, much less Sondheim or Jason Robert Brown, and maybe I'm being overly critical, but there's honestly very little in the world I can think of that's worse than bad musical theater. Maybe bad musical theater starring washed up television or pop stars, but that's a whole other post topic.
The most disappointing thing has been that my voice is shit right now. I never had the strongest voice (got dealt a fair number of Astaire songs while in school, as well as the requisite Asian Rodgers and Hammerstein fare), and the combination of not having worked on any musicals or taking voice lessons in about 3 years and a couple of throat infections/vicious colds I've had in that same period have contributed to make my voice a fucking terror. I needed to beat my ass into some voice lessons, like, YESTERDAY.
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
Hobo: I need money for food.
Guy: Me too, mind if I borrow some from your cup?
--86th & Lexington
A couple walks by holding hands, a tall man and a short woman.
Chick: What's with the Wookie-Ewok love?
Guy: Dude, that's harsh.
--13th & University
Girl: You know her, she's making stuff up again!
Crazy woman: Hey! Did you just call me Chewbacca?
Overheard by: poptart
Girl #1: Look, that policewoman has a seeing-eye dog! Isn't that cool?
Girl #2: Oh yeah, cool, they have them here for that anti-terrorism shit.
Cop lady: ...Is she friggin' kidding me?
Overheard by: Tara B
That site is possibly the greatest ever.
Monday, December 05, 2005
Sunday, December 04, 2005
"It's a tragedy, is it not? The little faces on the milk cartons - although I can't remember the last time I saw a kid on a milk carton - and on the walls of freeway rest areas. 'Have you seen me?' they ask. A deeply existential question at the best of times."
One of the interesting things I've noticed about many of the best kid's books (not that American Gods is a kid's book) is that at the root of it, there's a single question that is asked of the main character over and over. In Alice in Wonderland it's who are you, in Wizard of Oz it's where are you going and in Winnie the Pooh it's what do jagulars do? (They shout halloo and when you look up, they drop on you).
Ok, so I made that last one up, but I just wanted to mention Winnie the Pooh because it's the awesomest ever. (tiddly pom)
I find it interesting that these basic questions, which are obviously the kinds of things kids, going through the developmental stages of their lives, are asking themselves (who am I, where am I going), permeate these stories which have endured all these years, and I would guess that it might be one of the reasons why they do so. Really, they're questions that anyone of any age might find themselves faced with, which is why I found it neat when I read Wizard of Oz and a few of the Alice stories and found the questions repeated over and over.
I remember mentioning this in passing in a conversation to one of my roommates, who responded, "Whoa, deep." Whoa, deep, indeed. I salute you, sir, for your vocabularic prowess.
Saturday, December 03, 2005
Now, I don't mean to be asinine, but come on...is there anyone out there who's honestly surprised to find out that China continues to torture people? It's like all those Falun Gong/Dafa people who are somehow lining the streets of New York these days (I mean, if China's really THAT bad, how the hell did they get out? You can't exactly innertube across the Pacific), and they're all handing out flyers and stuff about how horrible China is and I just want to say to them, "Really? It sucks living in China? You have no freedom? NO SHIT." But then I don't because karma is a bitch. Um, so instead I type it out in my blog. Well, maybe that's not so bad.
China is not a democracy, and I don't know that it ever will be a democracy; much like the current situation in Iraq, it takes a lot more than "free" elections to create a democracy, whether it's a democratic republic or a parliamentary democracy (which, I believe, are the two more precise definitions of "democracies" currently existing in the world). Certainly in our lifetimes, China isn't going to change all that much, because the people in power have a lot riding on it not changing. From the situations with Tibet and Taiwan to the growing income gap between the new ultra-rich and the continually poor rural masses (sounding like a Marxist here), the powerful in China have never shown even the slightest care for typical liberal democratic niceties, and I don't see any reason to believe one day they'll wake up and suddenly will. It's true that in American politics, some of the biggest reformers (Teddy Roosevelt, FDR) came from monied backgrounds, but here they had a system where they could appeal to the public and couldn't be shoved aside. In China, I'm thinking if you rub the wrong people the wrong way there's still a pretty good chance you can end up in prison, no matter high up you are.
Maybe you're wondering why I haven't called you in a bit. You're probably not, but let's pretend you are for the sake of this letter.
I'm really tired of always being the one to call and always feeling ignored. I'm better than that. I deserve better than that. I think you do too. I think you're not happy where you are right now and maybe I could help, but who am I to say that to you and to tell you how to live your life.
It's not all about you, too. (note: this doesn't really make sense to me now, but hey, I wrote this at like 2 am and I'm just leaving it in for full accuracy) I think you're beautiful. I want you. I respect you. I'm a nice fucking guy and I wish you could see that and want that.
Maybe you do and you're afraid. More likely I'm too nice and you're not attracted. That's fine, but I wish you'd tell me instead of leading me on. Maybe you're not. Maybe you don't even realize you are. I don't care.
I could have loved you, I think. Maybe I still could. But I need to say goodbye right now. I hope this helps. It probably won't. Why the hell do I get so hung up on women? Am I just in love with the idea of being in love? What the fuck is wrong with me?
Friday, December 02, 2005
The fire was slowly dying, so I reached into it and pulled out its heart. I gave it to you, to keep you warm, but you dropped it on the ground. “That's not enough,” you said. I asked you what you wanted and you said it was nothing I could give, and then you started to cry. Your tears washed me away, down the hills and over the streams until I ended up in a playground where horses rode children and wolves danced around the swings like lost boys. They sang an ancient song of love and loss, and I thought I could understand the words but that was just a coincidence. I asked the wolves how to get home and they pointed towards the slide, so I ran up it. At the top of the slide was the moon, full and pregnant. I jumped on top of it and it rose into the sky as raindrops fell; rain fell all around and made me think of you because whenever I picture you you're always crying. I wish I knew how to make you stop but then I realize I'm crying too and always have been. Maybe that's what love is, looking for the person who can stop the tears, tears of rage and anger and cold and soul. And maybe love is realizing that you can stop them yourself, that you're the only one who really can, and then sharing that knowledge with another and helping them to realize it too. I want to find you to tell you this, but then I remember you left me years ago and aren't coming back.
All I know is that when I hear Rhapsody in Blue, I think New York and I get a little choked up. Every time. I like that.
Thursday, December 01, 2005
The thing that gets me about that story is where the Dutch contingent is mentioned:
"In the spring, the Netherlands had 1,400 troops in Iraq. Today, there are 19, including a lone Dutch soldier in Baghdad."
One guy? What the hell is that? And what does one lone Dutchman do in Baghdad that's oh so important, anyway? Sell tulips? Operate a windmill? Seriously.
Was anyone else out there under the impression that that pile of crap (which I suppose I shouldn't call that since I never actually watched it, but seeing as how this is my blog, I'll go ahead and say it anyways) had already been cancelled? Seriously. I've never met anyone who would admit to ever watching a single episode, much less coming BACK and watching a second. And I do feel kinda bad for what's his name...Matt LeBlanc, but not really all that bad, since he had a good run and should have known that the spinoff likely would not go anywhere. I'm sure he'll be crying into his $300 glass of wine and resigning himself to the television purgatory of VH1 reality serieses and whatnot. Sucks to be him, doesn't it?
Wednesday, November 30, 2005
Monday, November 28, 2005
For how long have you stood sentinel here?
Your outstretched hands offering succor and shelter to the supplicants in the square.
What wishes lie within your bronzed breast
And where would you fly, if you could?
Or would you choose to stay
Crowned forever with your trinity:
Three solitudes, each refusing to acknowledge one another,
Like the cherubs below you
Staring blankly away from their companions.
No water runs today;
Life has ended.
But the stains remain;
A reminder, and a promise for the future.
This next thing I'm not too sure what it is...I just let my mind wander and kept writing.
The angel had water running down her face and she turned to me and said, "This is not yours," so we took flight and roared through the skies like the faint echoes of a police siren screaming as it winds its way down the paths of the park, paths I walk down with your hand in mine. We sit on the stairs and you tell me you love me and I tell you I'm nuts for nuts. Or was that me in a past life? The trees rustle and tell us to move on but we won't be bullied and we sit while others come and go around us, talking in languages that haven't been invented yet, and it's all so petty and done. The wind blows and the cradle rocks and the chattering foreigners leave us to our decay. You say you're scared and I feel numb like a leaf. We take a picture so we'll always have a memory that we'll wish we could forget but we can't because we don't really want to. I want to tell you I hate you but a pigeon gets in the way and then you get on its back and fly away from me. "Come back," I say, "I know what I did wrong," but I'm glad you don't because that's a lie. I look around and there is youth everywhere and I wonder when I got old and if this is the thanks I get or maybe I've made this bed. The girls in front of me are distracting me, so they turn into leaves and roll down the path. I hear laughter on the other side of the square, and then a wave sweeps me into the reservoir where I sink like a stone. And then it's not water after all, and I'm back on the stairs with you and we start to dance. You have sunshine for hair and moonlight for eyes and I think if I kiss you I can take your beauty inside of me and make myself real. Or is that worthy? A baby cries and I'm falling through time and across bricks while clicking heels keep time and I'm screaming but the only thing that comes out is ink, ink like a river that I dive into and ride while it runs through it and out the other side, where you're waiting for me and always have been. The leaves are changing color and the sun is on the tops of the clouds. "And I wanted the outside freedom," you say, but I won't give it to you so I give you a thimble instead. You take the thimble and throw it away, and it grows into a can that rattles away and then stops. People line the railing above us and take pictures, but they can't see us because we're too real. The baby is still crying but no-one cares, and you ask me how long I've been in love with you. "I don't know," I say, "But there's a helicopter overhead somewhere." You nod and we skip down the road above the trees and for a while I think everything's going to be fine.
Friday, November 25, 2005
"I don't know."
"You don't know?"
"Yeah, I don't know; we lost touch, I haven't spoken to him in about 2-3 years."
"Gosh...I guess all you kids became friends because you had the same dreams, and lost touch now that all your dreams are popping...popping like bubbles! Ha ha ha...popping like bubbles!"
Shit, this one I tried my hardest to remember word for word...I should have gotten up and typed it out right away. Oh well.
(opening my door somewhere between 3-5 am)
"Were you in trouble or anything?"
"I remember, I tried to call you for about 2 weeks and you never picked up, were you in trouble?"
"No." (at this point I'm remembering this time, it was because she needed these tax forms filled out and I hadn't gotten them done yet and I knew that was what she was going to call and bitch about so I just didn't pick up the phone)
"Nobody took all your money or anything?"
(she closes the door and steps out, only to return a moment later with this:)
"Are you gay?"
Commentary later. Out to lunch.
Wednesday, November 23, 2005
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
Guy #1: How long have we been coming here and how long has that waitress been working here?
Guy #2: She's been here for at least 2 years.
Guy #3: She must be the worst actress in all of New York City.
--Brother Jimmy's, 3rd Avenue
Overheard by: Fritz Chestnut
I wonder how you get to post those? Can just anyone send them in? And someone selects which one to put up? I love eavesdropping on conversations...
Edit: Anyone CAN send them in...I need to start listening more carefully and writing shit down!
I'm thinking I might make this a daily-ish ritual...like my version of Pee Wee's word of the day. I did end up writing that poem last night but I'm not quite sure if it's done or not. Well...what the hell.
Thundering through the catacombs, filled with the dead and dying.
Badoombadoom. Badoombadoom. Badoombadoom.
A bottle travels back and forth on the floor
An underground metronome for the song and dance.
"What stop you getting out at?"
shift; bodies move as one.
An escape opens
The turnstiles await; silver dance hall hostesses
2 dollars, 2 dances
Step turn turn step
Up the stairs, into the rain
Tiny universes impacting on your face
As the city rushes by below you.
Monday, November 21, 2005
Currents of grey on a scorched field
Swirling and swooping, zigging and zagging.
How many facts could they tell us?
How many layers of thought, scrubbed away and written on top of one another,
Each replacing each: marching lemmings
But tonight you are pristine
A fresh-faced ingenue ready to sing a song of
Come into the light.
I will listen.
Footsteps in the snow.
Three coats in a line.
Grey. Blue. Orange.
Hanging; cold and motionless marionettes.
A bag, straining to touch the ground,
Bursting with hidden treasures.
An umbrella lounging lengthwise:
A woman in black, waiting to be taken out for a night on the town.
The titles suck, but that's what the poems are about, so bite me. I actually have the germ of an idea for another one that hit me as I was coming home, but I haven't written anything down yet...just an idea I'm probably going to work on for the next little bit.
I know, I can hear your breathless anticipation. But sooth! How can I hear it if it's breathless? HOW ZEN.
Hm...so the stupid hello program I use isn't letting me upload more than one pic to a post, or maybe I just don't know how to do it. Anyways (and I swear I'm out the door as soon as I finish this post), I followed a link off of Banksy's site to this one...I think I have a new fun obsession to sit and click on when I'm bored. Nooch!
|The Movie Of Your Life Is A Cult Classic|
Quirky, offbeat, and even a little campy - your life appeals to a select few.
But if someone's obsessed with you, look out! Your fans are downright freaky.
Your best movie matches: Office Space, Showgirls, The Big Lebowski
Sunday, November 20, 2005
The funny thing is, they probably don't really tell you (and by you I mean any readers out there) all that much about me. I mean, if I got an answer I didn't like or didn't agree with, do you think I'd actually post it up here? Shit no!
That said, here's one I just did:
|The Keys to Your Heart|
You are attracted to those who are unbridled, untrammeled, and free.
In love, you feel the most alive when things are straight-forward, and you're told that you're loved.
You'd like to your lover to think you are loyal and faithful... that you'll never change.
You would be forced to break up with someone who was emotional, moody, and difficult to please.
Your ideal relationship is lasting. You want a relationship that looks to the future... one you can grow with.
Your risk of cheating is zero. You care about society and morality. You would never break a commitment.
You think of marriage as something precious. You'll treasure marriage and treat it as sacred.
In this moment, you think of love as something you can get or discard anytime. You're feeling self centered.
It's a little surprising that it (the movie) affects me so much, I suppose, as the main thrust of the story deals with the relationship between parents and children: in this case, daughters. Not the first time I've felt a connection to and an involvement in a story about mothers and daughters (Joy Luck Club), which I suppose could say something interesting about me. I'm going to go with I just happen to be a little extra sensitive because I'm an artist. Yeah, that sounds good.
It's also a little bit about immigration and assimilation, with a dash of star-crossed love thrown in for extra seasoning. I don't know if straight up WASP-y type people would really be able to see the point being made in terms of assimilation and the issues that go along with being a minority parent, but it's definitely there. Not that I'm knocking WASPs, Lord knows I love 'em, it just might not be something that they would see as a big deal, because they might not understand what that's like. I don't even know if I understand what that's like. I mean, I know my experience, but I know there are millions and millions of others grappling with the same issues in their own way.
I guess maybe the reason why it affects me is because I'm getting close to the age when being a parent isn't that odd of an idea. It's funny how things come in waves...like one year, everyone you went to high school with seems to be getting married...then the next year they're all having babies. I'm still at the point where the idea of marriage is bizzare, not because I have a problem with the idea, but because I can't see myself getting married when I don't know what the fuck is going to be happening in my life in the next year, or 5 years from now, or 10, and I can't see committing to something like marriage without having at least a bit of an idea. And of course, I tend to extend that to all the people I know - hence my reaction to my roommate Sara's being engaged. Well, that and the fact that the guy that she's marrying is...you know what? Let's not go there, I don't need the negative energy.
I've always been terrified of being a parent, in the scattered moments when I stop being worried about finding someone to live my life with, much less have kids with. Again, not because the concept of kids is frightening, but because it's so much responsibility. I mean, you have a life, you have a person that it is your job to raise and make an intelligent member of society out of. I was going to say productive, but that makes it sound like all you have to do is raise a fucking accountant, which strikes me as a great way to end up with the most boring society ever. And if you screw up, there's no going back. There's no manual, there's no guide, there's nothing but you and all the little hangups and issues you've built up over 20-30 years of living on the planet.
Sometimes there's a lot of attraction to the thought of being Holden Caulfield. You know, not in the whole nervous breakdown sense, but the catcher in the rye idea. You want to shield kids from all the nasty shit that's waiting out there for them, but if you do it too much, you turn them into little spoiled bastards. But then, if you just let them run loose they also become little spoiled bastards. So it's got to be somewhere in the middle.
Realizing this has played a big role in the recent (last 4-5 years) reconciliation I've been able to feel towards my mom. I still don't agree with a lot of the things she does, but when shit happens now I'm usually able to take a breath, count to 10, think what must be going through her head and shrug it off. It's not perfect, I don't pretend to be, but I can say that I do respect and love her, which is a lot more than I used to be able to say. I'm glad I've come to this place; it's a much nicer place than where I was.
Saturday, November 19, 2005
|The Cure Shares Your Taste in Music|
See their whole playlist here (iTunes required)
Man, I would have been goddamn DEVASTATED if it turned out to be like...Britney or some other useless twiddle.
The motif for the tour he's doing right now is...um...well, I forget the specific name he had but it's Star Trek:TNG themed. So, picture one dude in an S&M mask and a Trekker uniform surrounded by 8 robots screaming out metal songs like "Wesley Crusher Fuck You" and such. It's actually quite funny, and the robots kinda have to be seen to be believed. He's got two in the back that have a set routine (in this case, it's Geordi and Worf) and then two robots in the front that do some more impromptu stuff (telling him to fuck off and die and such). I can honestly say I've never seen anything quite like it. In a good way, of course.
Hm...what else. Watched Casablanca today for the first time; it's quite good. Ingrid Bergman was quite the looker, though my favorite actress from that era remains Grace Kelly. There's actually a surprising number of storylines and themes running through the movie, the main one being the love between Bogart and Bergman. But it's interesting how that love is interwoven with the war, and also interesting to consider the fact that the movie was released in '42, when the US had just entered, meaning that it had probably been shot prior to Pearl Harbor.
I always wonder if authors/filmmakers deliberately aim for symbolism and allegory in their stories; I suppose it varies according to the individual and the project. Lord of the Rings, for example, can be viewed from many different perspectives, but I know Tolkien never felt it represented anything more than the history of Middle-Earth, and he hated allegory. It's very difficult to avoid seeing the parallels in Casablanca with the real situation though; Bogart, the American, is determined to avoid becoming entangled in the war raging across Europe and Africa, but in the end he becomes an active participant. It's a very fine line to tread without getting pedantic and tedious, but when it's done properly it adds a whole new element to fiction.
I keep getting distracted by the Hairspray soundtrack, which I was never able to play on my computer before so I haven't listened to it in like 2-3 years. Oddly enough, it worked today, so now it's playing. I remember seeing it when it first opened and being completely captivated by Harvey Fierstein's performance, which is just as good on the soundtrack. Groovy!
Friday, November 18, 2005
Banksy's (http://www.banksy.co.uk) balloon girl graffiti
Banksy is a graffiti artist who lives in Britain...London, to be precise, I believe. The work of his I've seen is absolutely brilliant. His website has a pile of pictures of his work, though possibly the most interesting thing is his manifesto.
Thursday, November 17, 2005
The ad itself is a quick montage of various shows in the various categories, and as such my appearance is quite brief. But still.
Times fucking Square!
Jimbo started asking me about this, so it's probably only a matter of time until he tracks it down. In the event that he's reading this right now...Jimbo rocks! Yeah!
What else have I been up to...spent a few hours at MoMA the other day. Very cool, some fascinating pieces up there. Oddly enough, my favorite exhibit was actually not a conventional painting or sculpture - it was a single, square room with a couple benches in the middle and a large number (40 or so?) of speakers set up in a circle, facing inwards, with each speaker projecting a part (perhaps 1 speaker for each singer) of a choir singing some chorale. I spent a few minutes sitting on the bench just listening and letting the sound wash over me.
Also went and saw my first draq queen performance...I had no idea that almost all of them lip synched! I guess it makes sense, I'd just never really thought about it before. That said, one performer didn't and she (I believe they're referred to as shes when in drag) was fan-fucking-tastic. Her name's Grenadine Ross, and if you're into drag queens and you see her on a bill, I can wholeheartedly recommend her. It's a bit nepotistic, as she is a friend of a friend, but she really is quite a performer. The only odd thing about the night was that it was at this bar, OW Bar, and they insisted on referring to it as "Oh Double-U" Bar. I mean, come on. It's fucking "ow" bar. That's just like calling N.E.R.D. "Enn Eee Arr Dee" all the damn time...it's "nerd", get over it or name it something else. Retards.
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
Tuesday, November 15, 2005
From that perspective, obviously it's pretty sad. But I don't tend to find it all that depressing, nor is that the way I look at it. I mean, yes, he does lose contact with those two individuals (I think...it's implied). But I think the message that Kevin Smith was really aiming for is that the genuine relationships you have in your life, whether romantic or friendly, are the ones that have the capacity to change you for the better, even - and perhaps especially - if you end up losing contact with those people, because your journeys take you in different directions. Or, in this case, because you ask them to have a ménage â trois with you. Holden loses Bankie and Alyssa, but he is able to grow through the experiences he has with them, and is ultimately better off not only for knowing them, but also because of the pain he is forced to go through, pain he brings on himself.
It's funny how knowing people and being in situations changes you and you never realize it. Usually it takes someone else's perspective to notice those changes. I think back on the person I was 4 years ago, and then 4 years before that and it makes me feel mildly ashamed. A lot of that I chalk up to retarded youth and generally having even less of a clue than I do now. It's funny, actually, I'd say the only advances that I've made in that area are somewhat Socratic: it's not that I have more knowledge, it's quite the opposite...I'm aware of the fact that I don't know anything.
My dad is always asking me what my plan is, where I'm going, the sort of things most parents wonder about their kids. I always want to say I have no idea. Where's Morty's going? Beats me. How long am I going to be able to stay in New York? Dunno. What am I going to do for money? I'll figure that out when I run out.
On a completely unrelated note, I've been listening to a lot of NIN (Pretty Hate Machine/Downward Spiral) and Nirvana lately...it's been a total junior high musical revival. That shit rawks.
Saturday, November 12, 2005
One of the things mentioned in one of the books I flicked through today was that in order to truly love other people, you must love yourself. I also kinda cobbled this thought together with one from a book on Bruce Lee, in which he mentioned that there were 4 types of ethical systems, one of which was based around the opinions of others.
I think a lot of the time, the reason why I'm so nice to people is because I want them to like me. I want them to think I'm a good person; I want them to validate me and my existence.
In order to break out of this cycle and begin to love yourself, you have to acknowledge what it is that you fear. So that got me thinking...what is my biggest fear?
The first one that jumped out at me was being alone. But then I also thought of my general fear of inadequacy: never being smart enough, attractive enough, interesting enough, whatever. So there I sat, mulling over which one was the big one.
Eventually, the realization I came to was that my fear of inadequacy is what leads to my fear of being alone. Why am I afraid of being alone? Why is it that I fall (or, actually, convince myself that I've fallen) so hard for people I meet who show even the least bit of interest in me? Because I'm afraid that I'm not really good enough to attract someone, something that my experience has, with a few exceptions, validated.
So now that I know that's what I'm afraid of...what do I do?
Deep seated fears like that can't be changed overnight. I'm not even sure they can be changed at all. It is a process, and a journey. I think they can be overcome. So, every day, I will try to do so. I will not let myself believe that I am not enough. But I'm also not expecting it to change overnight. There are no ends; only means. If you focus on a goal, inevitably you will be disappointed because either you fail to reach the goal or you reach it only to find yourself still unsatisfied, so you create another goal for yourself, and so on. You end up spending your whole life pursuing a goal, and you're never good enough because there's always another goal to reach for.
What you can do is turn your focus inwards. Monitor yourself. And there, in the silences of your soul, something may start to grow; something that, if you nurture it well, will be your journey, your answer and the question all rolled up into one beautiful little package. The answers are all inside of you; what's really important is which question you choose to ask, or if you even choose to ask at all.
It sounds so New Age-y and hokey, I suppose. But it's the only thing I've got right now.