Saturday, August 31, 2013

Clever Bastard!


You know what?  There should be a clever bastard award called The Clever Bastard Award, or maybe just name it after this clever bastard!

Music to My Eyes

Sheet Music Montage - Harold Feinstein, Coney Island 1950

Patience


Ladies and gentlemen, we are being held here momentarily by the train dispatcher. Please be patient.
A funny message to come through at the very moment I was contemplating my lack of patience.  Don't get me wrong.  Ive never been what you would call patient.  It's that this new level of impatience is entirely new.  I was never, as I mentioned, a patient man.  It's just that I didn't give a fuck.  There is a big difference.  BIG difference. 
So now the crusty old men preach patience.  Where does one find this mythical beast? Answer me now, thank you very much.  Anyway, if I seem a tad short, it's because I give a fuck now, apparently.  

Same as it ever was. SAME. AS. IT. EVER. WAS.


via This Isn't Happiness

Strange Cargo

Sometimes the burden of self is a strange, strange cargo. 

Grateful for having been mostly relieved of such.

Friday, August 30, 2013

No, seriously... RIP Seamus Heaney

“Funeral Rites”

I shouldered a kind of manhood
stepping in to lift the coffins
of dead relations.
They had been laid out
in tainted rooms,
their eyelids glistening,
their dough-white hands
shackled in rosary beads.
Their puffed knuckles
had unwrinkled, the nails
were darkened, the wrists
obediently sloped.
The dulse-brown shroud,
the quilted satin cribs:
I knelt courteously
admiting it all
as wax melted down
and veined the candles,
the flames hovering
to the women hovering
behind me.
And always, in a corner,
the coffin lid,
its nail-heads dressed
with little gleaming crosses.
Dear soapstone masks,
kissing their igloo brows
had to suffice
before the nails were sunk
and the black glacier
of each funeral
pushed away.
II
Now as news comes in
of each neighbourly murder
we pine for ceremony,
customary rhythms:
the temperate footsteps
of a cort├Ęge, winding past
each blinded home.
I would restore
the great chambers of Boyne,
prepare a sepulchre
under the cupmarked stones.
Out of side-streets and bye-roads
purring family cars
nose into line,
the whole country tunes
to the muffled drumming
of ten thousand engines.
Somnambulant women,
left behind, move
through emptied kitchens
imagining our slow triumph
towards the mounds.
Quiet as a serpent
in its grassy boulevard
the procession drags its tail
out of the Gap of the North
as its head already enters
the megalithic doorway.
III
When they have put the stone
back in its mouth
we will drive north again
past Strang and Carling fjords
the cud of memory
allayed for once, arbitration
of the feud placated,
imagining those under the hill
disposed like Gunnar
who lay beautiful
inside his burial mound,
though dead by violence
and unavenged.
men said that he was chanting
verses about honour
and that four lights burned
in corners of the chamber:
which opened then, as he turned
with a joyful face
to look at the moon.

Hero of the Week!

I'm sorry, but the rest of you are going to have to step up your hero games and take it to the next level... like maybe rescue a Cub Scout troop from a den of machine-gun toting, child-molesting jihadists or something, to beat this guy...

The man who replaced all the photos of his mother with Samuel L. Jackson!

How does that make him a hero, you may ask...

Well, why not?  It's my blog.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Dreams

This child must be over 60 by now.  What has he seen? 

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

More Graffiti, Street Art, Etc.

via Endless Canvas

I figure if I never have to go back inside again, life would be perfect.  Except for the weather.  I always forget that I am not weatherproof.  Well, nothing really is.  Some things are "weather resistant."  Everything fades, collapses, crumbles, or washes away at some point.  That is guaranteed.  Again, this is yet again a celebration of those who bring it out of the galleries and museums and make my world, and yours, worth slowing down and looking at.  I bow to all of you.

This shouldn't resonate on such a beautiful frequency...


But it really, really does.  God forgive me.
via SuperPunch

Anorexic Tennis Isn't My Racquet

Sorry... that was bad.

Beyond badminton.  This is awfulminton.

Mercury must really be in retrograde.  All my circuits are going snap, crackle, pop.

A rational explanation for everything...



And I think you should.  It would help you explain an awful fucking lot!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Syria? Now Syria? Whose sons will go there?

And whose sons and daughters were born there?

You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. ~ Matthew 24: 6

Um... Maybe Bob Dylan said it better, at least for me, because maybe this isn't the end.  Maybe this doesn't forebode the end of the world.  Then it just begs the questions, why not and how soon?  

Don't even pretend to be doing this in MY best interest.


Come you masters of war
You that build the big guns
You that build the death planes
You that build all the bombs
You that hide behind walls
You that hide behind desks
I just want you to know
I can see through your masks
You that never done nothin'
But build to destroy
You play with my world
Like it's your little toy
You put a gun in my hand
And you hide from my eyes
And you turn and run farther
When the fast bullets fly
Well like a Judas of old
You lie and deceive
A world war can be won
You want me to believe
But I see through your eyes
And I see through your brain
Like I see through the water
That runs down my drain
You fasten all the triggers
For the others to fire
And then you sit back and watch
When the death count gets higher
And you hide in your mansion
All the young people's blood
Flows out of their bodies
And is buried in the mud
You've thrown the worst fear
That can ever be hurled
Fear to bring children
Into the world
Oh for threatening my baby
Unborn and unnamed
You ain't worth the blood
That runs in your veins
How much do I know?
Oh to talk out of turn
You might say that I'm young
You might say I'm unlearned
But there's a one thing I know
Though I'm younger than you
That even Jesus would never
Forgive what you do
Well let me ask you one question
Is your money that good?
Oh will it buy you forgiveness
Do you think that it could?
I think you will find
When your death takes its toll
All the money you made
Will never buy back your soul
And I hope that you die
And your death will come soon
I'll follow your casket
By the pale afternoon
And I'll watch while you're lowered
Down to your deathbed
And I'll stand over your grave
Till I'm sure that you're dead



Dick Tracy or Simply Dick?

The Samsung SmartWatch

It's a valid question.  The 12-year old in me definitely perked up when I saw it.

But I'm not 12, am I?

It's still kind of cool.  Is it waterproof?  Is it shockproof?  Will it take a licking and keep on ticking?  Will the potential  market for this gadget even be old enough to remember these references?

Probably not.

Love can be this way sometimes...


Visiting the Atlanta Prison Farm

I turned 21 in prison doin' life without parole.  No one could steer me right, Mama tried.  Mama tried...

via Vandalog

There is a presumption in fine art (and yes I've said this before) that it will be preserved in some way as a timeless statement or record.  It is different when your environment is your canvas.  There is no presumption that anything will last.  It is created in the moment for the moment and the very act of creating is as important, if not more so, than the outcome.

That is where the true nobility in creation lies.

Monday, August 26, 2013

I think this means I passed the test


Take the test!

I'm assuming I passed but I could very well be wrong.

Political Values

Radicalism94
Socialism93.75
Tenderness53.125

These scores indicate that you are a progressive; this is the political profile one might associate with a university professor. It appears that you are skeptical towards religion, and have a pragmatic attitude towards humanity in general.

Your attitudes towards economics appear communist, and combined with your social attitudes this creates the picture of someone who would generally be described as left-wing.

To round out the picture you appear to be, political preference aside, a centrist with many strong opinions.

This concludes our analysis; we hope you found your results accurate, useful, and interesting.

Unlike many other political tests found on the Internet which base themselves on untested (and usually ideologically motivated) ideas, this inventory is adapted from Hans Eysenck's own political inventory which was developed after extensive empirical investigations in the 20th Century.

The Myth of Norman Rockwell

Someone needs to come out and say this.  This age-old national obsession with Norman Rockwell is a big, fat lie.  Trust me when I tell you that I am awkward enough, freckled enough and have had enough bad haircuts to tell you that what we seem to find endearing in his portrayal of youth carries no value as it manifests in flesh and blood.

IJS.

The single exception to the rule, apparently, was 20th Century actor, Mickey Rooney, a sexually prolific, priapic dwarf.  Wealth and fame might have accounted for the manual override of evolution's bias against the physically unpleasant.

It's hard out here for a pimp.


Don't leave the bitches guessing about who is in charge.  Flagg Brothers will point you in the driver's seat.  Diamond window back, sunroof top, diggin' the scene and all that cool shit!


Friday, August 23, 2013

Truer words rarely spoken


Wow! Jackson Browne was right all along!

I know!  I know!  It hurts just to say the words.  It's not that he was the only one.  We all had our own suspicions too.  It just hurts that HE WAS RIGHT!

Nuclear power IS dangerous!

Furthermore we can't really count on the people in charge to tell the truth, can we?

It's pretty clear now that many of us are not going to die natural deaths.

And Karen Silkwood was murdered.

Just because...


Strangest love song ever written...

Dear Beatriz,
I thought maybe I would be able to listen to this song again and not miss you.  Surprise, surprise.  Old habits die hard.  Though maybe harder for me than for you.  But you remember when we thought this song was written just for us, right?  It was like Robert Earl Keen Jr. had jumped inside our heads and written a song just for us.  Right?

I can still see it like it was yesterday.  We're sitting in our underwear in the kitchen on 23rd Street drinking coffee and smashing out Marlboro Lights in the greasy takeout containers from last night.  We could finish each other's sentences.  We didn't really need to talk at all, and yes I know that I always did anyway.  I had a way of killing a moment by talking too much.  Thinking too much.  Worrying too much.  Needing too much.

I'd like to say that's changed but here I am writing to you again.  Needing you again.  After all this time.   It's funny how that works.  Not haha funny or anything like that.  It's just that time passes and I think I'm over it.  It's years ago.  That's right.  Years ago.  You would think I would be done with it by now.  People got sick of my talking about it years ago.  My friends announced a moratorium.  No more talking about it.  You are allowed one third the cumulative time of a relationship to grieve a relationship.

Or less.

Certainly no more.  Not a minute more.

So I put on the other song last night.  Dreadful Selfish Crime.  Just to see how it felt after a year or so.  You were right there before the first verse was done.  You were back.  You were smiling.  No, okay.  Half-smiling.

"You get way to much pleasure out of this song, baby," is what you always said.  "Way too much."

And you would smile that half smile, and shake your head, and your hair would fall down over one eye and through the hair and the cigarette smoke you would watch me for a minute and turn away.  And that would twist my heart because I knew what you were thinking.  I knew what you were thinking from that first time you asked the question.

"Why are you so angry, baby?  You have so much."

But I was caught up in it and didn't know how to get out.  From the moment you asked that question it was clear that it was all on borrowed time.  I was caught up in it.  I wanted it to be different but couldn't slow down the train.  Too much momentum.

You never told me to get help.  The words, if memory serves were, "there are people to talk to."  It's clear now that it was fear that kept me away from those "people."  I still didn't understand why I couldn't just talk to you. You "got" me.  You understood.

Right?

But I know that's an awful lot to put on one person, isn't it?  And there was that last time.  I remember it as the last time anyway.  You were hanging on the side of the bathroom door crying while I sat on the tiles unable to move.  There was no half-smile.  Just a case of the sads.

There is no sadder feeling in the whole world than going to bed and crawling around the sheets sniffing about for the place someone laid their head.  Or maybe there is, but nothing I know of personally anyway.  I kept all our favorite records on repeat for months.  Pathetic, right?  Or worse that I still drag them out and play the songs in the same order that I used to?  I'm supposed to be grown.

I'm supposed to be grown, Beatriz, but I don't know if I will ever stop missing you.  What's done is done, sure, and I can smile about it now, but wow...

So maybe this is the strangest love song every written, but it seemed to make sense back then.  Some days it still does.  Does it to you too?  Or were you only ever just indulging me?

Strange love songs.

Strange love letters left unsent.

Sometimes I want to be rebelliously cheery...


.... just to mess with the stylishly glum.  Then I realize that my motivation is just to extend the reach of my misanthropy into an otherwise unreachable audience.  My loathing appears to be genuine.  The jury is still out, but all evidence indicates that... well... whatever.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Park Slope 11:45 a.m.?

My suspicion is that this better describes the Connecticut suburbs or whatever, but I could be wrong.  Just from looking around the opposite view of Park Slope emerges.  But who really knows?

Maybe this is why Universal All-Day Pre-K and Mandatory Kindergarten get so much lip service in the political arena.  God knows what could happen with the kids gone all day.  It can't be all about chai at the tea house, yoga and trips to Trader Joe's.

Odds are it's not going to end up on the Mommy Blogs though.

But what would God think, Davey?

It would seem, at face value, that there are a lot of fucking rules to this God business.  Yet, a person on a spiritual path has simply got to remain positive and this is another one of those things that comes down to a glass half empty vs. glass half full scenario.

Yes, this is a list of a lot of things that  piss God right off, but think of what is NOT on the list.  For example, marihuana and LSD are just out.  No can do. But it says nothing at all about cocaine, heroin, rohypnal, ecstasy, liquor of any variety...
Yes, fornication is mentioned but it never says anything specifically about other... um... alternative thing-a-ma-jigs, if you catch my drift.

So cheer up.  Seems to me the hoop that you have to jump through is pretty wide.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Art Everywhere - Poetry in Motion

Chase Twichell? Thanks.

Happy Birthday Joe Strummer...

Thanks for being there when I grew up and realized that all the Flower Power stuff was a lie.  Thanks for being there after that when I finally realized that all that California Shaman Lizard King stuff was nonsense.  Thanks for giving me a place to direct all this... feeling... that I had no definition nor focus for.  Thanks for rock and roll.


The End is Nigh.

West Nile Virus has been detected in all 5 boroughs of New York City this year.  And some other scary shit too.

In case you were wondering what it looks like, I've included this image here, which looks suspiciously like a tee-shirt design you would see at a Phish show.

I would rather have a walloping case of West Nile than attend a Phish show, but apparently it is not a choice.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Unplugging


I don't know that I am quite ready to do this.  I have no job.  I have less than no money.  E-mail is necessary.  Search engines are somewhat necessary, though probably less than one might perceive.  Contact with the news media... well, the same could be said there, especially as it applies to my life and my ability to support myself.  Everything this article says though is ringing true:

"It’s doing things to my brain.

I think in tweets now. My hands start twitching if I’m away from my phone for more than 30 seconds. I can’t even take a pee now without getting “bored.” I know I’m not the only one tweeting in the bathroom. I’m online so much that I’ve started caring about “memes.” I feel the need to comment on everything, to have a “take,” preferably a “smart take.” The online world, which I struggle to remember represents only a tiny, unrepresentative slice of the American public, has become my world. I spend more time there than in the real world, have more friends there than in meatspace.
And then there’s the grind, the pressure to interpret each day’s development through the lens of which team it will benefit. I spend a lot of my time being angry: angry at Republicans for being crazy assholes, angry at enviros for being so hapless, angry at the media, angry at random people on Twitter. It’s not just that U.S. politics involves daily offenses against decency and good sense, it’s that it just keeps offering the same offenses, over and over — same gridlock, same cranks and ideologues, same arguments, same grind."
And that is exactly how I feel.  It is a grind.

Pissing in the Wind

Some days are sort of just like pissing into the wind.  I am told that if you just turn around and piss with the wind at your back you will piss farther than you ever have before.  I don't know if that's any consolation. 

Monday, August 19, 2013

Nuts With Guns, Nuts About Guns, & Gun Nuts -- FML


I don't know what's more frightening about this Instagram Social Media Gun Bust:  That there are heavily armed people running about that are stupid enough to be busted because they posted photos on Instagram -- or that the first comments on the article are from self-professed 2nd Amendment crusaders claiming that Constitutional rights were violated in this case -- or that Hizzoner Michael Bloomberg and his dickhead police commissioner will add these 254 guns into their raw numbers when they claim their un-Constitutional harassment of the civil rights of young people of color has taken such-and-such amount of weapons off the streets.

Do I sound misanthropic?  Read the article.

FML

I want to go live in the woods.

Dick!

Here's where you can get one!


Fear: An essay from A.N.U.S.

I can't disagree with a single thing said in this article, but I'm sorely tempted to write it all off as being the rantings of an appropriately named organization -- which you have to click the link to understand.

It could be said with some degree of accuracy that I walk that tightrope between Nihiism and Zen with my head planted somewhere up there, so to speak.

Thanks to Kurt Vonnegut, by the way, for his anatomical sketch that I've misappropriated for this blog post.

"That's why self-interest terrifies us. Civilization itself is based on the idea that we can set aside self-interest and instead act according to collective rules designed to preserve others."  And this last quote pretty much says it all.  Why are we so eager to set ourselves apart as separate and distinct from the animal kingdom when all evidence gathered clearly shows the opposite to be at least mostly true most of the time.  

Apologies in advance.

I laughed at this stuff.

Been there. Done that.


Who Would Jesus Bomb?

via The Art of Mark Bryan

The Stand-Up Guy

Everyone agreed he was a stand-up guy whatever that means.  He always did the right thing, they would say, whatever the right thing means.

I came to believe that the right thing was simply what was convenient for the most people.  It was whatever accommodated their needs most at that particular time.  It wasn't necessarily the most moral or ethical thing.  It just suited a bunch of people based on what they were feeling they needed at that moment.  Whether they really needed it remains to be seen.  Whether or not anyone else suffered for it remains to be seen.  My guess is that someone somewhere suffered for everything he did that made everyone call him a stand-up guy.  Would they have suffered had he not done the "right" thing?  Or would they have just done without or had to figure out something else?

The stand-up guy was never really tested as being a stand-up guy.  It doesn't seem to me that he ever made any moral judgments.  I never witnessed him making any real value judgments.  Granted he was always the first to jump in and lend a hand to achieve what everyone else wanted, but that doesn't make it right, does it?  Especially if it suited what he thought he needed at any given moment too.  Moral relativity never made anyone right.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

The Pigs




Unpopular ideas can be silenced, and inconvenient facts kept dark, without the need for any official ban. Anyone who has lived long in a foreign country will know of instances of sensational items of news — things which on their own merits would get the big headlines — being kept right out of the British press, not because the Government intervened but because of a general tacit agreement that “it wouldn’t do” to mention that particular fact. So far as the daily newspapers go, this is easy to understand. The British press is extremely centralized, and most of it is owned by wealthy men who have every motive to be dishonest on certain important topics.


It's not so much a coincidence that I come upon this essay that I originally encountered back in college -- insofar as in this age of Google streamlining our searches based on prior searches, and my selectivity in reading material.  It was only earlier today that I was kvetching and kvelling about the selective definitions and representations of freedom in the venerable/venereal New York Times.  Yes, I am far more vociferous in my criticism of the NYT than of other papers, but they profit tremendously from their market position as the "liberal" alternative to other NYC papers, or other national papers for that matter.  I hold them to a higher standard, as the other papers make no pretense at being vocal critics of any government wrongdoings the way the NYT does in their Op-Ed pages.  The fact is, the NYT is just as guilty and perhaps more so than the others.  

It's not that I even expect any major media outlet, supported by corporate advertising dollars, who are in turn supported by government policy both domestic and foreign, which in return is supported by campaign financing, which is... etc... to be any different than what it is.  Just don't bullshit me in the process.  Don't lie.  We know where your bread is buttered.

Or at least some of us do.  And some of us care.  Just admit it.  You are pigs.  



Best film ever: The Wild Bunch?


Why the hell not?  The Wild Bunch

Because sometimes the last big score comes down to evening the score.  Not like revenge or anything, but you paint yourself into these moral corners sometimes and the only way out is to walk back over everything you've done up to that point and it can get a little messy.  Most people never even get the chance to put things right and do one single thing that isn't about self-centered bullshit.  Sometimes you just have that one window of opportunity, and so as Warren Oates says right before the last scene:

Why the hell not?

It's kind of funny too.  Watch the Mexican soldiers as the fateful four walk into the village square.  There is a pronounced WTF reaction as they stir from the stupor and slowly realize that something very different is happening, or about to happen.

People will react that way to you too.

Just watch.

Art Everywhere

Given the history of the Brooklyn Navy Yard this mural is almost an appropriate metaphor for the burgeoning art scene down there and in DUMBO etc.  Every generation feeds on the bones of the prior generation.  Or if you want to go for the cup-half-full feel you could say that each era is built upon the foundation set by the previous era.  Standing on the shoulders of giants, as it were.  I don't know what the artists intent was with this.  I've walked by it and mistakenly not pointed nor clicked.

via Street Art News

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Miracles every day

I swear I get more from a tuft of grass pushing up through a crack in the sidewalk than from a whole rural landscape.  Whatever we can will to happen, God will take back.  Just like that.  Fast or slow, this whole illusion we have built will be gone one day.  Trust.

Force Quit

The rest of life should be this easy -- 3 quick key-strokes, Command+Option+Escape to open a window where you can select any number of the programmed functions or apps you can get stuck in and then click Force Quit to get clear.

Traffic.
Stalled subway trains.
Awkward first dates.
Shitty jobs.
Interminable Family Crap.
Toxic Friendships.
Patterns you keep repeating.

Click.

Friday, August 16, 2013

The King Is Gone

This man didn't die.
















                    We buried this one.  

What fresh hell...

There are three types of Allen wrenches:

1) Standard

2) Metric

3) The one that you saw once 10 years ago that is the only one on the entire planet that fits the bolts holding together the sofa you need out moved from your parlor to the curb.  Like a lock, every sofa has one unique wrench.


Thursday, August 15, 2013

Foreign Shipping

I always took it for granted that I would be going somewhere I had never been. I guess it just never occurred to me that the rest of me could travel somewhere else.  Live and learn seems somehow a bit inappropriate now.

This Charming Charlie

I'm pretty certain that after 6 or so years, I am going to retire from blogging.  There is nothing I can put here that will ever come close to being as clever as this:

This Charming Charlie

Smiths lyrics put to Peanuts comic strips.  It makes so much sense. It's so obvious.  Yet it required a much sharper mind than my own to see it and bring it to life.

What else is there to say?  I could move on to dry commentary on news stories, but it all seems so empty now.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Term Limits

Watching Charles Hynes debate at the Brooklyn District Attorney Forum tonight, against challenger Ken Thompson, I finally understood the importance of term limits -- understood it entirely -- for the very first time.

Electing someone to political office is like loaning them your favorite possession.  The longer they have it, the more they feel that it actually belongs to them, and that they are entitled do do whatever they please with it.  They may even get really indignant if you suggest that perhaps they are abusing the privilege of having it with them.

This is it, motherfucker!

IT IS NOT YOURS.  I AM JUST LETTING YOU HOLD ONTO IT FOR A BIT!

GOT IT?

THANK YOU!

Pornography

Porn outlets used to look like this.














Now they look like this.



So as it turns out, America has more internet porn than any other country.  Nice to see people making good use of the 1st Amendment, especially at a time when every item on the Bill of Rights is under attack (except for the 2nd, of course)

Uh-Murikka!  Hell yeah!!!

The Lowest Form of Journalism

It's friggin' ironic that The New York Post editorialists are generally speaking, virulently opposed to affirmative action, but it seems that when they can exploit grieving parents to support their own jaded political agenda they are willing to bring in a few black people for the job.

This article is nothing more than horrid, shit-heeled sleazery.  It's cynical race-baiting and an egregious offense against common decency.

I'm calling out The New York Post on this one.  They have a history of this sort of garbage.  They are saying, in no uncertain terms, that hundreds of thousands of violations of Constitutional rights yearly are all that is keeping us from being overrun by hordes of armed blacks.  New Jim Crow?  No sir.  Jim Crow never ended in some corners of New York City.  You rotten bastards.  Shame!

Snowflame?

Well, apparently yes. Snowflame!

And it may or may not be intentional that homeboy here is busting a move straight out of a Beyonce video.  Look at him go!

DC Comics worked him for... one issue.  I'm not quite sure what happened to him after that.

Rehab?  Jail?  N.A.?

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Oh Dear God, No... Please, no.

via Vice Magazine

A group of officious Kiwis at a company called Martin Aircraft have announced that the first "practical" jetpack could be on sale to the consumer market in as little as 2 years.

This might have been good news, say... when I was 11 and still thought that I might be an astronaut and thought Lost In Space was quality television (actually, it was).

Then I saw the smug nerds who went out and bought Segways and motored around like extras in a Devo music video.  Look!  They bordered on sanctimonious on their nerdmobiles.  Can you imagine how insufferable they will be when they can fly?  Please don't do this.

Please.

#getoffmylawn

Be damned if this doesn't sound familiar...

 The Manhattan Project? 

Deja vu!

I am a friggin' genius!!!




So... I have an idea...