The Unbearable Banishment: June 2009

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

random nyc pic

This, believe it or not, is a section of the Berlin wall planted right in the heart of midtown Manhattan:

It was shipped over and mounted in a courtyard on 55th Street just off of Madison Avenue (I believe. Check me on that). You can eat your lunch and people watch just below a symbol of Eastern European oppression.

I remember when the Berlin wall fell. There were opportunists down on Wall Street selling pieces of rock that were suppose to be from the wall as paperweights. A lot of people bought them, despite the fact that their authenticity could not be verified.

* * *

I had a brutal workout this morning at the gym and was running late. I came out of the shower and took the corner a little too tight and a little too fast and smacked right into a guy walking in. He had a HUGE cock! And it was flaccid! I'm still pretty upset about the whole thing.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

o, wretched new jersey

Imagine; a sophisticated New Yorker such as myself trapped amongst the quiet, twisting side streets and emerald parkways of New Jersey. What happened to my city? Where can I turn for fulfillment, now that my Lower East Side apartment is gone? Why, just this past weekend the only thing I had to stimulate me was a trip to the shore on a sun-drenched, blue Saturday afternoon.

The boardwalk teemed with happy people. Laughter mixed with the sound of the ocean crashing on the shore. The beach was dotted with brightly colored umbrellas and you could smell the salt in the sea breeze. We ate beach food for lunch. Beach food is like bar food but much worse, which is to say, much better. Dippin' Dots, anyone?

We brought 3-Year Old and 7-Year Old to the boardwalk amusement park. I took them for a ride on the toy train. I'm sure they'll go through stages where they're at each others throats but for the time being, they are the best of friends.

Sure, it's cute. But where is the artistry in it? So common it's cliché. I exercised some of my demons on the bumper cars. I taught 7-Year Old Daughter that you have to earn the title of King of the Bumper Car Highway.

It might look like fun, but how am I supposed to feed my cerebral needs on such meager morsels?

Sunday, another drearily clear, blue day with comfortable temperatures and blazing sun, we all went to a baseball game. There's minor league park just a short drive away and although I'm certain that a game at a Major League park would prove to be a more intellectually fulfilling experience, this trifle is all I have available to me. 7-Year Old Daughter fruitlessly tried to explain the intricacies of base running to 3-Year Old Daughter.

They had excellent sight lines, but here was my view of home plate:

Another fine specimen from the Garden State. As the afternoon progressed, his neck took on the shade of a ripe tomato and the sweat dripped off of his earlobes.

There's just nothing out here worth doing. It's all so ordinary.

* * *

Addendum: I feel compelled to mention that this post is an exercise in sarcasm and my that critiques are purely tongue-in-cheek, in case anyone thought I was bent enough to not realize how good I’ve got it.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

he ain't no shakespeare

South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford was busted for having an extramarital affair. His paramour lives in Argentina and he used taxpayer dollars to visit her, which he claims he is paying back.

I have less of an issue with the money than I do with the fact that this is the same motherfucker who demanded that President Clinton resign after his affair in 1998 and voted for three of the four articles of impeachment against him. Of course, he’s a Republican. No surprise there.

In addition to his moral hypocrisy, get a load of this creepy, cringe-worthy excerpt from his emails that were released:

"My heart cries out for you, your voice, your body, the touch of your lips, the touch of your finger tips and an even deeper connection to your soul."

Oh, my GOD! I’m going to fucking PUKE all over my laptop! That is simply awful writing. Do women really fall for second-rate supermarket romance dreck like this? Ladies, if someone dropped that line in your email inbox, wouldn’t you and the girls wet yourself laughing? Or am I wrong?

If my writing ever gets that bad, can someone please tell me so I can shut down this blog and stop humiliating myself?

Friday, June 26, 2009

the unbearable banishment: no friend to the handicapped

I have never—and would never—park in a handicapped spot. I thank jeebus I don’t need one and curse anyone who would do something like that.

But while at A Company Called Malice, Inc., I always use the handicapped stall in the men‘s room. It’s more spacious and usually cleaner.

While in disposed yesterday, I tapped out a few text messages. I like to multi-task. Took my time doing it, too.

I finished up, opened the door and the new compliance officer—the one in the wheel chair—was giving me the evil fish eye. I didn’t hear him wheel in and have no idea how long he’d been waiting. I heard other people walk in and out so he had to sit through that.

* * *

Poor Ed McMahon. Even in death, he's a second banana.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

post for A Free Man / yankee blues

This post is for A Free Man who is in Australia. It’ll probably only be of interest to him, those who cannot stand the New York Yankees and those readers who never tire of my biting sarcasm.

I don’t know if the news made it down under, but I wanted to make sure you knew that Tommy Hanson, rookie pitcher for your Braves, pitched a shutout against the Yankees the other night. The mighty Yankees, with a payroll bigger than the GDP of some small nations, tucked their tails between their vaginas and lost to a young kid from Atlanta.

Alex Rodriguez ($275 million) is hitting an anemic .143 in June. He usually waits until October to put up numbers like that. Pitcher C.C. Sabathia ($161 million) only threw 35 pitches in he last outing because his bicep was sore. I thought he might have hurt it trying to fasten his seat belt around his ever-expanding gut, but my friend thinks he might have twisted it while trying to lift his wallet. Pitching ace phenom Chien-Ming Wang (one year @ $5 million) is 0-6. The list is endless. Isn’t that just too funny?!

My Indians are horrific this year but if the Yankees maintain this blistering pace, the season won’t be complete wipeout.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

more cell phone jammer mischief

The guy sitting behind me on my train called his bookie and was placing bets on tonight’s baseball games. Loud and clear for all to hear! I’m not making this up! $200 on the Red Sox. $150 on the White Sox.

And that’s as far as he got. I gave him the juice.

I’ve seen people get angry over the inability to make a call but this guy exhibited a deep, primal rage you don’t see in public very often. He was desperate to get these bets in—it was 6:55 and the games start at 7:05—but try as he might he couldn’t get through to his bookie. I pictured one of Tony Soprano's Jersey goombahs on the other end.

He was furious. It was the first time I worried about retribution. Guys with that kind of deep commitment to gambling seem to have a very low threshold for anger. Have you noticed?

* * *

I have become a Zen master gunslinger with my cell phone jammer. I was toying with my prey du jour—yet another yappy sorority chippy—and I needed to send a quick text message. I held my jammer in my left hand underneath a paperback of Truman Capote short stories. My index finger rested gently on the power switch. Economy of movement is key. In my right hand, I tapped out a text message. Then, with one fluid motion, I clicked off the jammer with my left hand and opened a brief window in the cell phone frequencies, hit the send button on the phone in my right hand and quickly activated my jammer again after my message went through. The entire sequence took a matter of seconds.

It's a shame it's not an Olympic event.

* * *

Are you watching True Blood? It’s fantastic! It’s got everything! Graphic sex, well-crafted scripts and story lines, hot sex, superb acting (with some fine American accents being faked), lust! lust! lust!, vampires and gore galore and some pretty raw sex scenes. Plus, best of all, the villains are a bunch of right wing religious nuts. They're the REAL blood suckers!


Tuesday, June 23, 2009

a bold and daring brag

I was in downtown Brooklyn recently and came across this daring claim that was posted on some scaffolding:

Yo, Brooklyn. Downtown Brooklyn—Fulton Street, to be exact—is the epicenter for sneaker culture, so if you’re going to hang a sign that says you’re the best sneaker store in Brooklyn (which is to say, the best in the world), you’d better have the juice to back it up.

I, of course, would look ridiculous in a pair of big red hightops. I think David Beckham named one of his kids Brooklyn. Is that correct?

That’s New York. A brag around every corner. Don’t even ASK where to get the best slice of pizza in town. You’ll start a pile up.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

don't ever let 'em see you weep

I was reading an abridged version of The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett to 7-Year Old Daughter the other night and at the end of the story I started to cry. It hit me like a freight train out of a dark night. It’s a beautiful story with a beautiful ending and for some reason the whole rejected/accepted theme got under my skin. I was embarrassed.

I wasn’t exactly blubbering, but tears were streaming down my face and I had to stop several times to compose myself before moving on to the next paragraph. 7-Year Old Daughter had never seen me cry before and I don’t think it freaked her out, but she did have an odd look on her face.

When I finished reading, I kissed her forehead and turned out her nightstand light. She wouldn’t let me put the book back on her bookshelf. She insisted on holding it. She was hugging it close to her body. Mrs. Wife kissed her good night and she still wouldn’t let go of the book.

Now that I think about it, maybe it DID freak her out a bit. From now on, I’m only going to read stories about combat and carnage. After all, I have a reputation to protect.

* * *

We had a brief repose from the unrelenting rain we’ve been getting over the past few weeks so we drove to Asbury Park to walk on the beach for a bit. I watched from a distance as 7-Year Old Daughter danced along the shoreline. She was all by herself, singing out loud and kicking the water. She such a joyful kid. Despite what I wrote above, the truth is that I’m just a cranky old fuck. I hope I don’t do anything to screw her up.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

why write jut one play when you are talented enough write a trilogy? (the third part)

CB and I finally saw the third installment of The Norman Conquests. I laughed so hard my face hurt. Three well-written, well-acted plays, all linked together, yet separate. It’s quite an achievement. We did it ass-backwards, seeing the plays in 3-2-1 order. Oddly enough, we both agree that it was a better sequence than the recommended 1-2-3.

On Saturdays and select Sundays you can see all three plays in one day for a special low price. I have no idea how the actors are able to perform at peak levels for seven hours—especially the lead—but word on the street is that they pull it off quite well. I’m not sure I would undertake it. I eventually burn out on laughing.

A few of the actors were nominated for Tonys and the play won for best revival. It deserved it. The show is doing okay business but not as well as it should. The house is running at about 87% of capacity. The problem is that it’s marketed as a trilogy and most people don’t want to invest the time and money into seeing ONE play much less THREE! The producers should make it clear that it’s not necessary to take in all three plays. You can have a perfectly fine evening seeing just one. Besides, only a lunatic, theater-obsessed New Yorker would sentence themselves to spending seven hours with a demented British family. Right, CB?


Thursday, June 18, 2009

beat heart

A few minutes ago I was walking through a corridor in Grand Central Station. It’s only 7:15 in the morning so the mobs haven’t mobilized yet. As I got midway through the passageway, I started to hear the faint notes of a cello being played. Not a recording; live. The acoustics of the passageway gave the notes a richness, particularly in the lower registers. The playing was so superb and the moment so beautiful that I slowed my pace (for once).

Then I saw her. She was an achingly beautiful girl sitting alone along the passageway wall. I don’t know what motivated her to set up at such an early hour since so few people are around to throw money into her open cello case. I tried not to stare but I was so swept up in the sound and vision that I fear I may have watched for a few beats too long.

My commute is a horrifying nightmare but I am occasionally tossed a moment of wonder.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

anthropodino redux

A few weeks ago I wrote a post about the Ernesto Neto's anthropodino installation at the Park Avenue Armory. (Post and photos here.)

This past Sunday was the final day of the installation and since works of this magnitude are few and far between I wanted to take a second look. I still fondly recall Christo's Gates project in Central Park. A lot of people grumbled about it but I thought it was fun.

I wanted the girls to see Neto's beast. I don't think they'll remember it because they're so young, but I knew it would be a fun afternoon for them.

Here are a few pics that will be of interest primarily to family lurkers.

The Daughters explore the labyrinths. As always, the younger running to catch up to her older sister.

Mrs. Wife relaxes in the “bubble tub” while 3-Year Old Daughter struggles with her footing.

Meanwhile, 7-Year Old Daughter goes for a swim.

Contemplating the canopy.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

spooky message in my meat

This is New Jersey:

This is the London broil that I grilled over the weekend:

It's not up there with seeing Christ's face in the melted snow of a mountainside or the Virgin Mother in the plaster cracks, but it did give me a start. It was like eating one of my own.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

i’ll punch your dad’s face in

My father-in-law signed 7-Year Old Daughter up for golf lessons on Saturday afternoons. He even bought her a set of real clubs. He’s a golfer and he wanted to indoctrinate her into that world.

That’s fine with me but, personally, I’ve never held a golf club in my life and have no desire to start now. It looks like a dull game and I have some negative preconceived notions (i.e., stereotypes) about people who like to hang out in country clubs. In my mind’s eye, they're the same crowd who kept George Bush in office for eight years and drove our economy off a cliff, amongst other offenses.

Father-in-law was otherwise engaged Saturday afternoon so I took 7-Year Old Daughter to her golf lesson. I was her caddy, which I thought was a hysterical joke until she chastised me for giving her the wrong club.

“No, Dad, that’s my short iron. I need the medium iron. See, it says right here on the head.”

There are only five kids in her class. When we got there, she walked up to the only other girl in her class, Isobel, to greet her. Daughter said, “Hi, Isobel. I like your hair like that. And that’s a cute skirt.”

Isobel is about three years older than Daughter and a few inches taller. She looked down on daughter (literally) said nothing, turned her back and walked away. A few minutes later, I watched from a distance as the same scenario played out. Daughter says something to Isobel, Isobel turns her back and walks away without a word.

Isobel was being a bit cunty to my Daughter. I could see the hurt etched onto Daughter’s face after that second snub. I wondered where Isobel learned such deplorable behavior. I looked over at her father. He was a stick of a man with a pot belly and a tight fish face who drove a BMW.

I was considering teaching Isobel a valuable lesson in humility by kicking her father’s teeth down his fucking throat in full view of the class. The episode confirmed everything I’ve always suspected about the thrilling world of golf.

Friday, June 12, 2009

a new toy for gadget boy

Here’s my latest obsession.

This is the new MiFi from Verizon. When activated, it creates a wifi bubble. This is perfect for my laptop during the long, tedious train commute, where internet service is nonexistent. The advantage this device has over a wifi card is that I can also use it for my iTouch. That way, I have all the advantages of an iPhone without suffering AT&Ts horrible service. It’s two device drivers for the price of one. Plus I get major kewl kid cred.

Mrs. Wife and I recently used it to check our email while driving from New Jersey to Ohio. In the desolate mid-state Pennsylvania mountains, no one can hear you scream. Or get wifi.

Up to five people can use the same signal, but it's secure so the only way someone else can leech off of my wifi is if I give them the WEP key password on the back of the device, which I’ll probably never do because I hate people so much.

The bad part is that when I activate my cell phone jammer to cut short a rude boy’s cell phone call, it also knocks out my wifi signal. So I can use one device or the other, but not both simultaneously. Also, I keep it in my pocket and wonder what the negative long-term effects are of having my testicles constantly bombarded with a radio signal at close range. It’ll probably sterilize me but at this point I don’t really mind. But if it starts to shrink my boys, I’ll have to rethink using it.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

things to do in cleveland when not at a funeral

On a clear, blue, warm day, you can take your girls to the big Rock n' Roll Hall of Fame, located on the shores of Lake Erie. Why do you suppose they call it Erie?

Do you like the architecture? I do. It was designed by the brilliant I.M. Pei. It's suppose to look like a record spindle with some stacked 45s. The girls were mildly amused about the whole thing, which was good enough for me.

My father- and mother-in-law made the trip from New Jersey for my mom's funeral, which I thought was incredibly gracious of them. The whole lot of us visited the Hall of Fame the next afternoon. There was a big Life and Times of Bruce Springsteen exhibit. Mrs. Wife and her kin are related to Bruce (hence, the backstage passes of a few posts ago), so the family photos and history resonated with them on a deep level.

Father-in-law is a stickler for details, so when he found one small, teensey-weency factoid that was incorrect regarding Bruce's formative years, he quickly hunted down the exhibit curator and set things right.

This... one of my favorite activities back in Clevo. Those are bratwurst on the top rack. Have you ever had a bratwurst? Oh, holy sweet Mother of Jesus they're good. Especially if my brother-in-law is at the helm working his grill magic. If you haven't had the pleasure, please stop reading immediately and run out to your nearest butcher and pick up some links. And if you can arrange it, have my brother-in-law cook them. You'll thank me later.

* * *

Dharma tip o’ the week:

Take it from me; it is virtually impossible to drift off into a state of meditative bliss while the lick from AC/DCs Back in Black is rattling around inside your head.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

a brief walk in manhattan

I attended a meditation class last night in the city. The topic of last night’s talk was particularly meaningful to me. It gave me the fuel to deal with some sticky issues I’ve been having and when I left I was floating on hope and resolve. There was a warm June breeze so I decided to walk to Penn Station.

I popped my ear buds in and headed south on Park Avenue. My freakishly reliable iPod shuffle selected George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue off of the soundtrack to Woody Allen’s Manhattan. That song is New York personified. I turned west onto 34th Street and just as that first crescendo hit after the bluesy clarinet intro, I looked up and saw the Empire State Building.

The crown was bathed in blue light. I am embarrassed to admit that it gave me a tremendous lump in my throat. It was a perfect, harmonious moment. New York City is a magical place that will fuck with you every which way it can.

With Gershwin still playing in my head, I walked down 34th Street and saw:

A group of serious looking businessmen in expensive suits standing on the corner of 5th and 34th. They briskly shook each other’s hands and all walked off into the night in different directions.

The cross town M34 bus racing between Madison and 5th. I could see a couple in the back seat stealing a kiss.

Two tourists standing in the middle of the sidewalk (of course) in front of the Empire State Building carefully pouring over a map of Manhattan. They had big smiles on their faces.

A pretty girl approached from the opposite direction. We did that dance where you try and get out of each other’s way but nearly collide because you both step in the same direction. She smiled at me as we passed. Being smiled at by a pretty girl never gets old.

I bought an ice cream cone ($3) from her.

You don't see that many girls in a Mister Softee truck. She was parked just off of Herald Square and was wearing a pair of really cool Batman earrings.

The program to close off portions of Broadway to vehicular traffic
and create pedestrian malls has been so successful that Mayor Bloomberg decided to expand it for the summer. Here, the section of Broadway in front of Macy’s (The Worlds’ Biggest Store) is open for lounging.

All that from just a lousy walk to the train station. I love this goddamn town.


Monday, June 8, 2009

unfortunate movie ad placement in the Asbury Park Press

I showed this to Mrs. Wife and she saw it as a woman about to have her head blown off. I saw something quite different and she accused me of having my mind in the gutter. What did you first see?

* * *

Last week at A Company Called Malice, we were told that until further notice, we are required to work a minimum of 10 hours of overtime each week. This imposition comes right at the onset of summer; the season to be free. That same day, the new unemployment numbers were released. Here in the U.S. we are up to 9.4%. So I’m just going to keep my fucking mouth shut for once and grind it out.

* * *

I watched the Tony Awards last night. Well, part of them. They were so abysmal that I had to bail out. My sister texted me wondering if Broadway has finally hit bottom. I informed her that that’s not possible since Broadway, apparently, has no bottom.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

2 more deaths in the family

This morning’s Asbury Park Press brought the sad news that Memory Lanes, my local bowling alley, burned to the ground.

If you’re good at shooting billiards, you’re a shark. Pool halls have a dark, sinister, poetic panache associated with them. Being good at pool can get you laid. Have you seen The Hustler? Or its sequel, The Color of Money? But nobody gives a shit if you’re a good bowler. Least of all, hot girls who wear a lot of black and like to hang out in tough neighborhoods. And I don't know why that is. To me, they're two sides of the same coin.

Isn’t that a great name for a bowling alley? Memory Lanes? Bowling is perceived as a low-brow form of entertainment but it’s always been a part of my life. There aren’t many things I did as a child that I occasionally still do today. I use to take 7-Year Old Daughter to Memory Lanes. We had a nice time but now it’s gone.

The second passing came courtesy of The Recording Academy, the association that bestows Grammy Awards. Polka music has been quietly eliminated as a category. It’s considered irrelevant. My father was an empty, useless man but one thing he did right was play polka music when I was growing up.

On Sunday mornings we use to watch the locally produced Polka Varieties on TV. It was like (and I’m not kidding about this) American Bandstand for polka music. The host was Paul Wilcox (Paul Whitesocks) and instead of attractive teens dancing to the latest rock hits, there was a live band, usually Frankie Yankovic, and the dancing audience was comprised of extremely old people.

Laugh if you want, but it takes a great deal of dexterity to dance the polka. Especially for women! They have to perform all those complicated steps backwards. Yankovic was a virtuoso of the button box. The Beer Barrel Polka! Who Stole the Keeshka Polka! And the polka guaranteed to offend at least half your audience, The Too Fat Polka.

I don’t want her.
You can have her.
She’s too fat for me.

Look, obviously, I’m not trying to insinuate that a bowling alley and an antiquated form of music meant as much to me as my recently deceased mother. Don’t be an idiot. But things pass out of your life and you feel a void, even if it’s a small one.

* * *

This was the first Saturday that I didn't have my usual afternoon phone chat with my mom. It was weird. I called her number so I could listen to her recorded greeting but the number had already been disconnected.

Friday, June 5, 2009

i givith but my cell phone jammer taketh away

Seated next to me on the train was a 20-something Mexican girl. The conductor informed her that since it was rush hour, she needed to step-up her off-peak ticket an additional $1.50. She didn’t speak English but eventually understood his request.

She reached into her wallet and handed the conductor a $100 bill which, of course, he could not break. It was all the money she had so the conductor pantomimed that she would have to get off at the next stop. She didn’t speak English but by the look on her face I could tell that she clearly understood THAT.

I, hero that I am, handed the conductor the $1.50. She said gracias several times. Then do you know what that ungrateful little bitch did? She popped a Bluetooth in her ear and started loudly yammering away into her cell phone. The volume knob on her voice was set at 8. If there’s a language spoken faster than Spanish, I’m not aware of it (especially if it’s being spoken by a 20-something Mexican girl with a high-pitch, grating voice).

Fortunately for my fellow passengers and I, my cell phone jammer was running on a fresh charge. Of course, I tormented her for several minutes by allowing her to reconnect her call and then knocking out her service. It was delicious fun and she deserved it. I don’t speak Spanish, but I’m pretty sure she was referring to Sprint in derogatory terms.

I can be agreeable but if you cross me I’ll turn on you.
* * *
Latest News story link on CNN homepage that I cannot possibly click on this early in the morning:
Ducklings down drain, mom quacks for help


Thursday, June 4, 2009

why write jut one play when you are talented enough write a trilogy? (the second part)

About three weeks ago, CB and I were lucky enough to get a ticket to Alan Ayckbourn's The Norman Conquests; a brilliant comedy trilogy that can be viewed in any order or independently as stand-alone plays.

That's almost seven hours of theater with the same six characters. Norman is a horrible-charming cad who obsessively seduces and deceives three sisters. He's married to one of them but that doesn't seem to be a sticking point with him.

We've got two down and one to go. This time, we saw Living Together. Although these are separate pieces of the same puzzle, this is considered the middle play.

Since seeing Round and Round the Garden three weeks ago, which is technically considered the third play (we're doing it ass-backwards), the play picked up a few Tony nominations, namely, best revival, best performance by an actor, best performance by an actress (two of those) and best director. Not a bad day at the office.

It deserves all the accolades it can get. It's so funny and the actors work their asses off and they're British and I know that shouldn't count for anything but because I'm a big Anglophile, it does. You really can't go wrong with any of these plays so if you live out here or are visiting I would encourage you to go. You'll laugh. And who couldn't use a good laugh these days? God knows I need one.

* * *

We sat near Vogue editor Anna Wintour. She was there with her daughter. [CB identified her daughter. I had no idea who she was.] She sat through the entire performance with her sunglasses on. Indoors. At night. What a horrible, pretentious idiot. (With apologies to CB. He admires her.)


Wednesday, June 3, 2009

15 books—in no particular order

I like to read memes but I don’t participate very often. But this one was too good to pass up. It’s from Annie.

List 15 books that will always stay with you. And don’t take too long to think about it. It has to be spontaneous.

I reread my list and some of the choices seem pretty pedestrian and obvious, but it is what it is. They don’t call them classics for nothing. I thought of throwing a ringer in like Das Kapital or Ulysses to sound like a big smarty-pants but it would have been a lie. Play along, if you'd like

Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Play the Piano Drunk Like a Percussion Instrument Until the Fingers Begin to Bleed a Bit by Charles Bukowski

The Quiet American by Graham Greene

A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Journey to the End of the Night by Céline

In Cold Blood by Truman Capote

On the Road by Jack Kerouac

Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant by Anne Tyler

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

Will You Please Be Quiet Please by Raymond Carver

If I Die in a Combat Zone by Tim O’Brien

Ironweed by William Kennedy

Barrel Fever by David Sedaris

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

i'm trying to maintain my composure

I thought the long hours at work would abate with the advent of summer but they have not. I just pulled another 13-hour day. I’m full of spit and bile and anger. I work for people stupid enough to do this:

This is how incoming projects are categorized. When I first saw this I laughed out loud and made a joke about how if everything is a panic then nothing is a panic, but the woman who set up this system got a hurt puppy-dog look on her face.

According to her, Rush is more important because it’s underlined.

This is the place that demands most of my waking hours. This is the place that has taken my daughters away from me. Those rotten fuckers.

Monday, June 1, 2009

can’t you read the signs?

Artiste Florenza and I attended the Jenny Holzer exhibit at the Whitney. It was a series of LED sculptures that are visually fetching but can also be headache-inducing if you stay in the gallery too long.

Holzer works with words, words, words and most of them have a political bent to them. I sometimes grow weary when art tries to beat me over the head with a political agenda.

Stick with this video. The Whitney installation starts about :30 seconds in and it’s worth a look. Here's the link if you can't see it below.

Here are a few stills.