laughter and forgetting (and no, I haven't read the book...)
a strike, nothing spared
 music melts all the separate parts of
our bodies together.   ~  Anaïs Nin
kool thing

[movie-related]future bg color = FAFAFA

may 1st

if the new Hitch-Hiker's Guide To The
Galaxy
movie has done anything, it's
produced the most hilarious music video
I've seen in a while. it features
Sam Rockwell (aka, "who's that actor?
I've seen him before somewhere,
he's cool") as the universe's
"un-dumb" but actually clueless
rock star/party animal president.
he's all about "democracy and stuff."
download the music video
(right-click and save) and see for yourself, it's great:

http://www.media-file.net/hhgg/zaphod.mov














  hits thus far
  r.nembhard, 2001 - 2005 (in one form or another)
october 1st, 2005 ~ saturday
happy 1st birthday, l&f !!! you're a year old today!
     one year ago I wrote my first journal entry/post on laughterandforgetting. how the time flies. l&f's not my first website (I think it's my 4th of 5) but it is the one that's currently up and running and full of writing that, if viewed through a very strong (we're talking scanning electron) miscroscope, may contain what could possibly pass for actual content. if by content I mean the random ramblings of my brain, mostly. point is, this site o'mine has more or less survived a year on the web, and that's at least worth a mental grin of satisfaction.
june 15th, 2005 ~ wednesday
lights, camera, Collegiate
     a cinematical thing of note: I got an email yesterday from Collegiate's Alumni Office. my middle school/high school is bragvertising an independent feature film by a director alum named Andy wagner (he graduated in 1981). the film, which is striking me as documentaryish, is called The Talent Given Us. it's garnered a nice bit of exposure and critical favor on its way from the festival circuit, as it was an Official Selection at this year's Sundance, and it won the Grand Jury Prize at the 2005 CineVegas Film Festival (it's apparently "fresh from the Collegiate Film Festival" too, according to the email, I self-laughingly read). another plus is that it's showing down at the Angelika Theatre, which is definitely a great place for any non-Hollywood flick to find itself. overall though, the biggest possible draw of the film for me, personally, is that it features a cameo by my former college advisor, and now head of the College Upper School, Bruce Breimer '63. if I ever saw the movie, it'd be a little trippy to see the man who got me into college up there on the silver screen. just saying.
june 14th, 2005 ~ tuesday
t-minus seven
     well, counting today, there's only seven more instructional, explicitly teacherly days of school. next Wednesday is the last day of instruction, and our students' last day of school (though we teachers are obligated to come in on Thursday and Friday, to pack up our classroom, mainly). and this truly is the "last week" with our group, as none of them will be back in September -- they're all moving on to new schools. I'll be saying goodbye with a number of students who've been in our classroom for just a year, and a trio that I've taught for the past 3 years, one of whom has never been more than a classroom away down the hall from me, since 2001. whatever the amount of time they've individually been at our school, in just a week's time they'll all be ending a chapter of their education, the one that I've helped guide them through. pretty soon I'll become one of their former teachers, but I'll remain someone who cares about where they're going and how they're doing, in their academics, and journeys as young people.
june 13th, 2005 ~ monday
craving some Kravitz
     this morning I required the soothing sounds of one of Lenny Kravitz's more mellow tracks to sate my aural needs, during the pre-noon 15 minute break we daily insert into the schedule. it's a Lenny track that I've had in various formats: maybe on tape long ago, on my Mama Said CD that's since broke, on videotape when I recorded a Kravitz marathon off MTV, and on mp3, finally. and of all my versions of It Ain't Over Til It's Over, which is arguably the first song of his that I fell in love with, it's the mp3 one that should've been the most ubiquitous and unloseable. surely it was on my original 1G iPod, and I'd think that it'd make the jump with the rest of my collection to my current 3G pod. but for whatever unbeknownst-to-me reason, the song fell through the cracks, missing for quite some time. thankfully the almighty combination of high-speed internet access plus iTunes on our classroom PC saved the day. in a few seconds I was reunited with one of Lenny's definitive tracks, and more importantly, a song that fills me with bliss whenever I hear it.
june 11th, 2005 ~ saturday
ready, set, dance
     kinda put myself and one facet of my so-called abilities on the line last night, but in a fun, competitive and satisfying way. the night started out regularly enough, with Mike, Alex, Dana and I hanging out at Table 50. in some sort of a promotion being held at the bar, a waitress sauntered over to me and asked me a trivia question about some new vodka they were hawking; I half-answered it, and won a free drink (which I didn't even redeem. earlier I ordered an orange juice at the bar, and beyond an offered sip of someone else's drink, I had nothing alcoholic the entire night). when the DJ's tunes seemed suitably danceable, the four of us got down for a bit. unfortunately the music skewed towards some less-than-crowd pleasing songs, and the dance-floor area thinned out considerably. we spent some time lounging, before exiting Table 50. outside we met up with George, whom I think was in his post-hockey game mode.

     we all then literally hoofed it over to B Bar, which was some blocks away on Bowery. the last time we were there, a few weeks ago in late-ish May, we hung out by the outside area of this sprawlingly massive establishment; this time we settled on one of its internal rooms/bars. weren't there for too long before someone came over and informed us about the dance contest that was about to be held in the room. he asked if any of us wanted to participate. I gave a semi-indecisive "I'll think about it" as an answer; I seemingly said no, though my interest was definitely piqued. not so much by Mike and George egging me on to do it, but by the addition of competition to that which I love so much, dancing. maybe I saw the contest as a display of real value for one of my passions, I dunno, maybe the extrovert I can became when I dance was overriding my usual introversion. it possibly could've been that side of me that said "yeah, sure" when another one of the contest-runners came over to try and sign me up, successfully this time.

     still kinda mentally agape at my own voluntary inclusion in the contest (what was my goal? to be better than others at dancing? no, it'd be better to just do my best, and maybe hope that I get noticed, I told myself) I blanked when I was asked for a unique name for the little placard to be taped to my back. the "names" of other contestants were pop-culture puns or something funny; I wasn't so creative at the moment, I went with what the guy who signed me up suggested, Roger Lodge (the host of that late night UPN staple, Blind Date). the luxury of retrospection makes me think that the moniker "The Semi-Notorious R.O.G." woulda be a whole lot cooler, but again, my brain wasn't cooperating at that moment. it kickstarted itself for the most part when the contest officially began, as I focused on dancing with enough energy to look like I was putting some effort into it. because, I kept in mind, I was being watched by the 2 judges. they walked around and through the bunch of us contestants and other dancers.

     slowly but surely I start dancing more energetically, so by the time we're a few songs into the contest, I'm pretty into it, keeping up some sort of pace, keeping it moving. three or four or whatever smallish number of songs in, the music stops and one of the judges announces the results of the beginning round, if it is to be called that. names of the dancers who made the cut to the next round were being called out, and as I heard it, I wondered, what does it mean to have one's name called? does that mean you're a better dancer than the non-called? and would I be called? I got the simple answer to that latter question when my heard my name among the list of next-rounders. it was cool, no doubt about it, but hopefully it would've been just as cool if I didn't make it. so I'd like to believe.

     anyway, the next round starts and I'm back into it, doing my dancing thing with a fair amount of concentration, as the dance floor began to fill up. another contestant (I chafe at calling him a fellow competitor, cuz in a perfect world I'd only be competing with myself) was certainly putting his all into it, this tall, voguing guy who was garnering quite some attention to himself. he was pretty hard to ignore, in truth, he had a flamboyance that easily caught the eye. the eyes of the judges noticed him as well, cuz his name, though I didn't catch it, was called again as ones of those who made it to the third round. my name was among the list of advancing dancers, guess I must've done an adequate job of grooving in the just-ended round, to be remain among the successive smaller group of contestants.

     so as the number of actual contestants dwindled in the fourth round, the crowd of non-contestant dancers swelled. now I was facing some real competition, not so much against other competitors, but for just plain personal, danceable space on the floor. the area was packed, and I was being jostled with some unfortunate regularity as I tried to secure just enough room to move to the beat. not that I blame the non-contestants for appropriating most of the dance floor (far be it from me to stop someone from dancing) but it would've been a far different dynamic, as well as easier for me to dance, had the floor been cleared exclusively for the remaining contestants. then again even more eyes might've been on me, don't know it that would've been too palatable. can't have it both ways, I guess. but I had it the former, and dealt with it. so when my name wasn't called for the fifth, semi-finalish round, I was felt relieved. the contest was just this shy of becoming laborious, in my less-than-succesful attempts at moving without being bumped by someone. not to mention that fact that I'd been dancing for an hour or longer with no more than 2 intermittent, minute-long breaks in that span of time.

     the fact that I wasn't chosen to advance to the next round didn't sting or bother me at all. it was nice to have made the cut twice, but I'd never overestimate myself as being the best, nor did I seriously contemplate being the winner. I've got some skills, maybe, like anyone else, they'll take me a certain distance, and no further. my enjoyment of the dance contest mainly derived from the joy I get from dancing in general, combined with an urge to really put my all into it, to push myself, if in a noticeable way. had I felt otherwise, I'd've obsessed over those other feelings when I joined up with Mike, Alex, Dana and George when I exited the dance floor, and when I got on the train. instead, my 2 am mind drifted here and there on the ride home, I really didn't think much, if at all, about the contest. I suppose all that dancing produced a nice releasing effect, or maybe it just drained the capacity for deep thoughts out of me. it's only now, the better part of a day later, that I'm substantially reflecting on the dance-centric part of last night, and how interesting and different it was. I had to maintain a good deal of focus during the contest, but at the same time I was very much enjoying myself. contest aside, all that dancing was just what I needed.
june 10th, 2005 ~ friday
B'way redux: Table 50, tonight
     it's all about Broadway these days, these days being last night and tonight. yesternight, following course after course of way-too-fine food at an excellent (at least by my standards) restaurant, Mike and I and a large number of his fellow associates and lawyers went to see Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, the musical based upon the movie that I somehow haven't seen. unfortunately John Lithgow's part was played by another actor, as Lithgow had another [actorly?] commitment that night. but his replacement for the night was pretty good, and his co-star, Norbert Leo Butz, was phenomenal. he brought the house down (pardon the allusion, Steve Martin) with laughter more times than I could count. the guy was a phrenetic ball of comedic energy, charmingly crude, obnoxiously but loveable. funny as hell, in a role that just won him a Tony, deservedly from what I laughingly saw. the supporting cast was great and had their moments, but Norbert really stole the show, for me. what an awesome tag team he and Lithgow must be. the musical definitely falls into the "I'd see it again" category. now, to see the original Caine-and-Martin version from which it grew.

     on tap for tonight is a return to Broadway, but to a thoroughly different section of it, and for a different reason. our Broadway-centric locale du noir is Soho, specifically a spot named Table 50 (never been there before). Mike and Alex are celebrating, says he, Alex's emerging from her cocoon of med school studies for a bit. which is as good an excuse as any to kickstart the weekend with a round of drinks and hijinx, maybe even some dancing if this Table 50 place is that kind of joint. hope so.

     oh, and I think that the art show mix that I made and played went over nicely. I got one or two "I like this song" or "what song is this?", so I think the playlist did the job.
june 9th, 2005 ~ thursday
Dirty Rotten Scoundrels tonight, plus dinner & the art show
     I'll be meeting up with Mike and his law-mates tonight, to graciously dine a midtown meal that's compliments of his firm, before the legal-minded group and I go catch Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. before either of this two fine events comes our student's art show. during the exhibition of their artwork, a mix of my creation will play. here's the playlist of gentle and sunny songs that I came up with:

pietro mascagni - cavalleria rusticana - intermezzo sinfonico
rogue wave - be kind + remind
bjork - frosti
bjork - venus as a boy
jonathan richman - springtime in new york
marjan mozetich - postcards from the sky - i. unfolding sky (louder)
the concretes - warm night
roger kellaway - come to the meadow (rough edit)
nancy sinatra - sugartown
rogue wave - perfect
paul simon - you can call me al
belle and sebastian - i know where the summer goes
nouvelle vague - i melt with you
beth orton - sweetest decline
kaki king - carmine street
radiohead - no surprises
u2 - i still haven't found what i'm looking for
bob marley - is this love
camera obscura - teenager
doris day - que sera sera
ventures - guantanamera
bjork - oceania (un-salty edit)

we'll see how it goes.
june 8th, 2005 ~ wednesday
Mactel Inside?
     2 big news-type things: first up, VHS or Beta will definitely be playing at this year's Siren Music Fest, the rumor has been confirmed from the source, the Village Voice. life just got a whole lot sweeter. one of my favoritest bands, playing outdoors, on Coney Island? AND Diamond Nights, whose EP I just bought, though I've also been digging them for some time now, are also on the bill. I'll finally have a chance to see them live, as well as Morningwood, whom I tried to get the crew to go and see. never happened, but now it might. hello July 17th, hello much musical awesomeness.

     the second hot-off-the-digital presses news item is today's announcement from Apple, that it'll be switching its computers' processors to Intel Pentiums, dumping their formerly beloved PowerPC. apparently the latter processor, which came from IBM, just couldn't adequately meet the performance goals and roadmap for the future of Apple's product line, amongst other reasons (I think the inability to get the G5 into a Powerbook, was another). though it seems like heresy for many of the Mac faithful, a Mac-curious guy like me thinks it's a smart move, one that'll hopefully level the playing field, as well as make Apple a bit more competitive, if they're working with more of the same internal architecture. may the best coder, not hardware, win, I hope. plus, the dream, however unappetizing to either Redmond or Cupertino but highly appetizing to me, of a dual-boot system with OSX and Windows partitioned on the same drive, is just too droolworthy to not imagine, sez my inner geek.
june 7th, 2005 ~ tuesday
her artistry's sonic service (hope I got that interpolation right)
     one of the teachers next door is planning an art show of our classes' creations over the year. she's inviting the parents and family of our young artists-in-residence to come to the event this Thursday, and today she asked me if I could put together a mix or some music for the occasion. not one to pass up a chance to pseudo-DJ, I happily accepted. I've already mentally queued up most of the tracks I'll be playing, cuz the majority of my newest musical additions (excluding yesterday's) have the mellow vibe that'll be perfect for peaceful art reflection, on Thursday. it'll also be pretty nice to share some of my newest song-faves with a wider audience. I'll post the playlist up here, once I finalize the mix.
june 6th, 2005 ~ monday
just another music monday
     with visions of the Brazilians Girls still dancing in my head, I took a trip to Other Music today, to get their album, and the Diamond Nights EP too. alas, they were sold out of both discs, so I was forced to traipse across the street and buy them both from Tower Records. at least I scored the nice price on both -- 12 tracks of Braziliany goodness for only $8.99, and the 5-song "Once We Were Diamonds" was a mere $5.99. not too shabby. I'll iTune/Pod them up for 'tween-home-and-work listening, cuz as they I say, keep your CDs close, and your mp3s/AACs closer.
june 5th, 2005 ~ sunday
Hail To The Kings, Baby
     coupla cool things to report. might have some free theatre coming my way, as Mike's going to see Dirty Rotten Scoundrels later this week, and he'd like me to join him via his extra ticket. dinner somewhere is also part of this "package deal," which is in actuality one of the regular post-work events that Mike's firm offers to its legally-minded employees. pretty cool. the big John Lithgow fan in me definitely doesn't want to pass up a chance to see him live and on stage, so I'm an email away from letting Mike know that the evening sounds doubly-satisfying, and that I'm very much in.

     and, bah dum bah-dah, good olde cousin John came over yesterday. we did some of our usual digital exchangery. I gave him a very-belated birthday gift, the Die Another Day 2-Disc Collectors Set, to cater to his Bond-loving nature (a weekend or 2 a year we lose him to the 007 marathons that run on cable). John, who is also defined by his fondness for many things anime, brought over and gave me 2 DVDs he burned that contain the entire 4 seasons and 51 episodes of a Japanimateed series called Full Metal Alchemist. we watched the first episode together, seemed like a quality and engaging show to me. I'll watch the rest in installments.

     afterwards I burned a copy of Die Another Day for myself, and then John and I watched Army Of Darkness, a movie that I bought 2 months ago but hadn't opened or rewatched until yesterday (I last saw it in 2000 or 2001). I was purposely waiting to re-see it with John, because I knew that the combination of him not seeing it before and being unaware of its greatness, and the years since I had seen it, would make for an explosively hilariously experience. and I was right, the movie was several times more funny cuz John was there (he always seems to enhance my laughs. out of all my family members, he and I definitely have the most compatible humor, as well as interests). movie-wise, Ash's one-liners in Army Of Darkness were as absurdly acute as I remembered them to be. John and I were in stitches for a good 80 minutes, thanks to the Raimi brothers. their writing, and Bruce Campbell's acting, have etched some cine-fantastic lines and moments onto my brain, and my cousin's, too.
june 4th, 2005 ~ saturday
Star Chores
     so, Star Wars, Episode III, which I saw with Bjorn and company on Thursday night. um. yeah. I'll say this: it may be the unintentional comedy hit of the year. we couldn't help but laugh in response to the almost-inexcusably melodramatic, b-movie level dialogue that marred a number of the characters' interactions. our choices of reactions to the sometimes wooden-words were limited: it was either laugh, cringe in pain, or gouge out our own eardrums. ok, now it's me who's being a bit over dramatic. to be sure, the laughter of others around me in the theatre was kinda infectious, and maybe it made me laugh when I might've been only semi-cringed, had I watched Episode II alone. but the things that Anakin and company had to force through their mouths did seem poorly-written to me, a distractingly noticeable number of times during the movie, laughworthy or not. it's a bit sad, for the Star Wars universe, its fans, and big George himself, that such a glaring lack of quality-control in the writing would befall the script (and the scripts of the Episodes I and II). even sadder is the possibility that Lucas was yes-menned into believing that the script was good overall, and that no one, someone from his cinematic camp or outside it, could take a step back and really go over it critically. something certainly happens when one man's original dream is abetted by hundreds of millions of dollars. anything becomes possible, as far as visual effects are concerned, but the movie's emotional effects, the chance to connect with the people on screen, those moments suffer. the overall accomplished actors in Episode III did as best they could with dialogue, but I wonder, during the initial readings, rehearsals and final filming, just how aware were they of the embarassingly-bad lines that litter the script. did they not notice them, or ignore them and swallow them whole? even if there was some collaboration on or reworking of the lines, it must've been pretty scarce, because the final product bears little fruit of that possible labor. oh well, I could mith and boan about it all day, maybe I won't be satisfied until someone surreptiously unLucasifies the script and reshapes it into something more palatable, overall (much like the Phantom Edit that was done of Episode I, to streamline it of its excesses).

     so I've said what I've had to say about the pitfall-ridden writing of Episode III. then there's the special effects, and the Anakin/Vader transformation that I was looking forward to. both of these elements were satisfying (even the latter, despite the scriptual shortcomings). the CGI was dead-on, nothing to complain about there. convinced, I was, of digitally-conceived world portrayed on the screen. onto Vader. by the movie's end I had a whole new picture of him, one anchored in loss and grief and pain. he was reborn in the cruelest of ways, and though he emerges with a terrifying facade and destructive powers, he is really a shell of a man underneath, having been consumed and reduced by his passion, and yes, love. the existence and clarity of that transformation may be the movie's, and Lucas', saving grace.
june 3rd, 2005 ~ friday
the end, and the beginning, of the Bjorn half-week
my half-week of Bjorn-centric fun came to a short but sweet end yesterday, as he and I and coupla of his friends went to see Star Wars Episode III. I'll leave the pseudo-review til tomorrow, but I will say this now: it may be the unintentional comedy hit of the year. more about that manana.

     ok, I wanted to rewind and recap Tuesday, the day that ended a year and a half of not seeing Bjorn, the day when we crammed what felt like several great evenings of socializing into one enjoyably lengthy one. after reaching him cellularly, following his "hey I'm here in the city" voicemail, I met up with Bjorn sometime after 3 in Union Square, in the area where all the skater kids and others congregate. we caught ourselves up about our mutual lives thus far, and spend a bit of time talking tech, during which I marvelled at both Bjorn's programming skills, and newish business venture (it involves a happy nexus of also-mutual passions of ours, music and technology). and the aforementioned skill-marvelling coincided with Bjorn's breaking-in of his new Powerbook, which he had bought just a bit earlier in the day. the parts of his out-of-the-box experience with his new laptop that got me going included him getting free wireless service from open networks in the area (I know this is passe to others, but I ain't got no wireless tech so this still kills me with coolness) and then him using that free wireless to browse this site (which gave me my first open-air hit, if I'm not mistaken). tech aside, we chatted there in Union Square for a bit, with me alternatively glancing at the guy with the very professional camera, who was very clearly snapping pictures of the two of us (too bad I didn't find out where those pics would eventually be seen). after a bit Bjorn's former college roomate Mike joined us, and we set off to find a different place to sit and eat. at the restaurant-whose-name-escapes-me, the three of us had an early dinner that was punctuated by some tandem computing (Mike's earlier-model Powerbook joined Bjorn's at the table), and me barely knowing what I was doing as I played a 3D game on Mike's computer (without my trusty USB 6-button controller, I am lost).

     after dining we walked over to Washington Square Park, where we spent a nice stretch of time relaxing and conversing, as we waited for one of Bjorn and Mike's friends, Pooja, to join us. part of the pre-Pooja conversation focused on Bill Cosby, and his latter-day complaints on racial topics, which led us to discuss racial politics in general, as we've experienced them amongst our travels and education (Mike spun my head around a bit when he related the countries where slurs are used as common-place descriptions of other races, and Bjorn helped me remember the moments of ethno-tension that dotted our Collegiate past). our talk eventually turned to lighter fare -- we joking discussed levels of geekdom, unapologetically accepting one's inner geek, and geek fashion, later on. Pooja came sometime in the 8 o'clock, maybe something to 9, possibly. the 4 of us decided to do another sit-down, food-involved thing, so we made our way over to that great place that serves bubble tea (I wanna say that it's on Saint Mark's, but I'll leave it to Bjorn to correct me. and on the way we took a few group pictures on the street). there we indulged over some delectable desserts, to wind our evening down. I had to split a little before ten, to meet up with Todd to catch Edan's DJ set over at APT, otherwise I would've certainly hung out longer with Bjorn et al.

     that super-Tuesday begat the stellar Brazilian Girls Wednesday, and a cinecentric Thursday, but the common denominator that made the past 3 days so great was Bjorn. a good and cool guy he is throughout, so this half-week couldn't help but be as good and cool too, by his company. I said goodbye to hime last night, cuz it's doubtful that I can coordinate more hanging during his weekend, which'll be dominated by his mother's graduate school ceremonies. which is ok, cuz I'm satisfied in knowing that Bjorn made this half-week a lot more fun than it would've otherwise have been. I've known him a good 14 years now, from middle school to these strange proto-adult days, and I can say that he remains the same down-to-earth, real, uncomplicated, and again, cool person that he's always been. can't wait til his next visit, and his permanent return to NYC.
june 2nd, 2005 ~ thursday
post-Brazilian Girls bliss, and another night out with Bjorn
     wow. I'm lacking the superlatives to properly describe how amazing the Brazilian Girls are and were, live last night, and how great a musical experience that was, for me. it's definitely made the short list of best concerts or gigs I've been to, hands down. I had no idea beforehand of how full-on the band's performance would turn out to be. it was electric and visceral, joyful and consuming. their singer, Sabina (with her eyes obscured, as usual, this time behind her hair and a flowing headdress) commanded my attention throughout the night, even after she removed the three little points of light that suggestively shown through her bodysuit (a pair were strategically located on her chest, and a third was placed below her equator, over a very "central" spot of that region, if I may be so bold). in time she threw those little light-points out into the crowd, but Sabina was no less illuminating. I was and am truly in love with her voice, which I found pleasurably warm in songs like Me Gusto Cuando Callas and P*ssy, and sensually charged for most of the others. from a magnetic body that swelled and danced about the stage, that voice expertly intertwined with the increasingly pulsating and inescapably danceable rhythms of the band. song by song, the Brazilian Girls progressively built up the crowd's energy until we were eventually transformed into simply a dancing sea of people. at one point in that time, I was a bit taken aback when I sensed that everyone around me, everyone that I could see was feeling the same music and dance-derived joy and aliveness that I was feeling within at that moment. and it was but one of many satisfying moments in a night of unforgettable music. it's a day later, and I still haven't quite come down from the musical high that the Brazilian Girls created. and mid-next month I'll be seeing them again, for their free Summerstage concert. dancing to a fantastic band with friends is how I want to spend that Sunday in the park.
     as for how I'll be spending tonight, the answer, for the third great night in a row, will involve Bjorn. he suggested that we (he and I and Mike and whoever else) go see the last installment of the Star Wars epic/franchise, Episode III, Revenge Of The Sith, aka The-One-That'll-Hopefully-Not-Suck-As-Much-As-Epidosdes-I-And-II. again, I'm as interested in Anakin's descent into Vaderness as the next guy, so that'll get me in the door. here's to a passable movie, otherwise.
june 1st, 2005 ~ wednesday
Bjorn's here! Brazilians Girls tonight!
     feliz June! and why is it so feliz! well, Bjorn's finally here! I actually saw him yesterday, we hung out for a super-extended amount of time in various parts of downtown Manhattan. it was such an enjoyable afternoon, evening, and late night. all the various parts of our friendly reunion'll have to be recapped later on this week though cuz I'm short time today for a very good reason of further feliz-ness: the Brazilian Girls concert is tonight! I haven't been this amped about a show, since, hmmmmm, the last time I saw VHS or Beta? yeah, I just self-confirmed that my level of excitement is at that lofty a, uh, level. what Sabina and her boys have in store I don't exactly know, but I am sure that whatever it is, it'll make for a memorable night. plus, Bjorn's joining me for the show! he accepted my until-now-untaken other ticket, and I directed Mike to Craigslist where and whoever else could try and get their own, to join us. so between Bjorn being here, my long-awaited Brazilian Girls show, and Bjorn actually joining me for the show, I'm straddling clouds 9 and 10 right now. gotta get outta here and let tonight's fun begin.
may 31st, 2005 ~ tuesday
Edan the Humble Magnificent
     tonight's event du noir, and fine way to end a month: partaking of the swell turntable skills of a beatmaker named Edan, who's doing a DJing gig over at APT, in the Meatpacking District. Todd actually told me about this show and that he was keen on catching Edan live (he lent me the guy's latest CD so that I could verify the recorded goodness for myself). thus I'll be joining him to see exactly how Edan gets down on the ones and twos, en vivo.
may 30th, 2005 ~ monday
layers of coolness
     last day of the mini-vaykay over here. at least I can end it knowing that I'm on the cusp of what I think will be a very very good week, for two reasons: Bjorn's gonna be in town, his mere presence is gonna generate automatic good times; and I'll finally be seeing one of my smitten-with-and-enraptured-by-for-months-now bands, The Brazilian Girls, when I go to their show on Thursday. I foresee it being a show con muchos sexy results, as per the whims of Sabina, the group's singer, and the lyrical laws of desire that'll pervade all of the 6 languages she can sing in. it's going to be a grooveable feast, definitely.

     oh yeah, and the movie I saw yesterday with Todd. Layer Cake = cinematic Brit coolness. well worth the price of admission, for me (though judging from her griping during the post-movie credit roll, the woman sitting next to me was less than enthused). to each their own, I was entertained. lead actor Daniel Craig admirably carried the majority of the movie, with more than a little help from some stand-out secondary characters (s'nice to see Colm Meaney still getting work). and maybe the allusion is non-apropos, but a commercial for a Steve McQueen movie marathon that played just before Layer Cake made/hypnotized me into comparing that film icon to the newish Craig. Craig's wardrobe helped - he was dressed to the nines, and certainly came across as one of the most stylishly-attired characters I've ever seen on screen. but aside from the sartorial, Craig made enough of an overall impression for me to look out for him in his next movie. and the director, Matthew Vaughn, is also poised for bigger and better things. he very nearly became the helmer of the next X-Men movie, until they, the studio/producer types, passed on him if only because they wanted someone with more than one movie under their belt. eh, no skin off Vaughn's nose, I hope. Layer Cake's a great foundation for his next project.
may 29th, 2005 ~ sunday
Layer Cake
     Todd gave me a ring in the early afternoon today to ask if I'd see a move with him later tonight. we're going to see Layer Cake (it's directed by one of the guys who produced Lock Stock And Two Smoking Barrels). we almost were gonna catch a screening of Old Boy, a Korean film that's recently graced our American shores, but we opted for the Brit flick becuz Old Boy might actually be out on DVD, Todd semi-wagered.
may 28th, 2005 ~ saturday
From Mozilla With Love
     over the past few days Bjorn has made some helpful suggestions about this site, and all "speak and ye shall shall code"-like, I've put one or two of them into effect. I've upped the presentation factor a tad, specifically on the "giglist," as I'm currently calling it. and something of a slight-to-possibly major sea change has occurred (well, I guess all sea changes are pretty significant) with my overall coding intentions: with the assumption that most of the HTML tat I'm slapping together is Internet Explorer-ready, my new focus is constantly ensure that the site looks all purdy and correct on FireFox. the aforementioned browser-compatibility has quickly become a first-and-foremost consideration, for the time being. I'm still tied to IE the way a crack whore (or assistant crack whore, take your pick) is addicted to crack, but this new-fangled Mozilla's nothing to snort/inject at.
may 27th, 2005 ~ friday
breakdown of last night's Rilo Kiley show
     tgi vacation. so, the Rilo Kiley gig: last night began with me somehow managing to not get lost as I traversed the coupla blocks between Astor Place and Webster Hall. I considered this a minor victory, cuz my sense of direction when I'm heading to aplace I've never been fore is always circumspect. at 8 o'clock on the dot I was at the venue, where Jess and company already were. we chatted for a few minutes as we stood in line, topics included sartorial matters (when my new blazer was described as "seersucker" I had to reply, "no, not seersucker. nearsucker."), as well as successful radio call-in contest stories (Jess's mom is addicted to winning stuff on the air). one of the line manager guys let us know that we needn't stand in line for under-18 ticket-holders cuz, well, we weren't 18. so off the line we went, got our tickets/IDs checked and wristed braceleted, and we walked on in.

     after the girls got drinks (but not me, I've been dry for weeks) we went upstairs to the stage-left balcony (at some point in the evening we marveled at the sheer hugeness of Webster Hall). up there we watched the opening acts on one of the big screens. I really enjoyed the first band, who I think were the Brunettes. the band featured alternating vocals from a guy on guitar and a girl who played a number of instruments (most notably a charming and sparkling xylophone). she definitely was the beautiful glue that held the band together. one of my fellow concert-goers noted, several times, how long her legs were, as we watched her stand outside the "backstage" room for the bands (this one was really upstairs one the balcony where we were. her lengthy legs were accentuated by the very short shorts she was wearing, also.

     ahem, back to the music. the next band was good as well, though I lamented the lack of xylophone in their instrumentation, the xylophone gauntlet having been thrown down so handily by the Brunettes. I may not be be clamoring to find out more about them, but in the moment, Portastetic delivered, as far as I can tell, a good set. oh, one more thing about the Brunettes: a highlight of their own set was a song about the Olsen twins, for which the lead singers donned cut-out paper masks of Mary-Kate and Ashley's faces. that definitely enthused the crowd. it was around 10:00 when Rilo Kiley finally took the stage, and the excitement of the crowd was damn near palpable. Jess and us actually wandered over closer to other side of the balcony, where we could actually see the stage, and also look down upon the floor, where it was packed shoulder-to-shoulder with people... to be continued, hopefully.
may 26th, 2005 ~ thursday
Rilo Kiley at Webster Hall, tonight
     gonna go see those indie darlings Rilo Kiley at Webster Hall (ain't never been there before) with Jess and a coupla others, tonight. I'll consider the show a nice way to kick off the 4 day Memorial day vacation.
may 25th, 2005 ~ wednesday
Bjorn in the USA
     Bjorn, whom I haven't seen or heard from in over a year, sent me a wonderfully out of the blue Friendster message yesterday. it's nice to know that he's still inclined to drop me a line from time, as he remains one of my favorite people from the Collegiate School era. anyways, Bjorn wrote to say that he'll be in New York next week, which is earth-shatteringly cool news. he didn't say what it is that brings his back to town in early June, but hanging out and catching up with him'll be a great occasion for me nonetheless.
may 24rd, 2005 ~ tuesday
scritti Urbanetti
     I recently got Dana's Evite for her Fourth Of July Weekend party, which she's aka-ing "Doonsfest." I hate to pick and choose, but the reply comment that Urbs added to the Evite page really brought a smile to my face. he wrote, quote,"Hell, I'm pitching a tent just thinking about pitching a tent....HA! I hereby endorse this product of "inset nickname here"-fest, and look forward to canoa-tuba-ball." ah, that Urbs has a humorous way with them words. it's reason number 1312 why we love the guy.
may 23rd, 2005 ~ monday
firefixing
     I spent some time tweaking the html of this olde site of mine for compatibility and nice-viewing in Firefox. the process taught me that Firefox is more demanding about the uniformity of underlying mark-up language than Internet Explorer is. for example, IE'll give me the benefit of the doubt and equate an " = " in a DIV with a " : ", but it seems that Firefox ain't having that. it wouldn't render the ='s that I had, so I had to change them. Firefox's behaving far more strictly to a standard, which is a good, forward-thinking thing, and it's given me the opportunity to clean up and conform my coding ability. and now my site's attained far more cross-browser compatibility, as from here it appears that it looks virtually the same in IE and Firefox (though Firefox doesn't allow custom scrollbars. and Safari compatibility is something only my Mac-inclined friends can inform me of).
may 22nd, 2005 ~ sunday
back down to Bowery, for music this time
     after spending no more than 20 minute at George's (yeah, I was a very late arrival) we all headed downtown to B Bar (formerly the Bowery Bar) on East 4th, last night. my God that place was huge. many rooms and spaces for alcohol-abbetted diversions. great place for people watching too, all sorts of lovely creatures were in attendance last night. I spent most of my time just chatting and relaxing, though had I more energy I would have joined Kim on the dancefloor, wherever that was.

     and tonight's that rare Sunday where I'm out on the town. but when George offers a free ticket to check out a band, I don't resist. we (me and George and his visiting Vancouverans who were part of our crowd last night) will be checking out 2/3rds of Medeski Martin and Wood (Martin'll be elsewhere, but there'll be some others joining Medeski and Wood) at the Bowery Ballroom. George's cousin, I learned last night, is a musician and a friend of the band, so that'll be a cool asterisk to tonight's musical entertainment at a venue that I've been to a handful of times.
may 21st, 2005 ~ saturday
cocktails at George's
     on tap for tonight is a little shindig that George is having at his place, a "little bender" as he pre-described it, that'll coincide with him having survived his first year in New York. he wrote me yesterday to ask if I was coming, a fact of which he wasn't certain becuz I haven't seen him, or Mike or Dana or Jess for that matter, in weeks. so tonight'll be a reunion of sorts, with friendly faces I've gone too long without seeing.
may 20th, 2005 ~ friday
Captain N, the Gamemaster, aka my cousin
     apparently my cousin John needs my assistance in researching high definition televisions, which'll suitable screen the next-generational game playing he'll be doing on his future X-Box 360 and Nintendo Revolution. and with his current X-Box OG, Gamecube, Gameboy DS and various older systems, he is the new Captain N, the Gamemaster, I can safely say, and he's got/will get the console-y hardware to prove it (though he is strangle anti-Sony. to amusingly irk him, I occasionally ask about his DSP, my imagined melding of a PSP and DS. and recently it really got his goat when I recently told him about successful projects to emulate the Gameboy on Sony's handheld).
may 19th, 2005 ~ thursday
solidifying some summer plans
     in the past 24 hours it looks like the 4th of July weekends plans have been hammered out into a lovely design, one which depicts a weekend in which various out-of-towners come to NYC for a bit of fun before sauntering up to Dana's [parents'] place in Middletown, NY. it won't be Urbsfest, the once-usual staple of summer enjoyment, because there isn't the "promise of t-shirts, sex in various shrubbery, and five star cooking," according to Dana. but it will have us all together, which is always the main ingredient for good times.

     and in completely different and other news, I found out that Kelsey Grammer of Frasier fame has been chosen to play the role of Beast in the next X-Men movie, which may be one of the greatest casting choices I've ever heard. reading about his casting gave the comic book lover in my mental goosebumps for a moment, and made the overall me a bit excited about a sequel and franchise that otherwise I've been pretty "eh" about. I didn't catch X2, but the Beast/Grammer/character/actor amalgam definitely gets the movie-going juices flowing. I hope he gets significant screentime, and that they do him well.
may 18th, 2005 ~ wednesday
summer reunion
     got a few emails today about getting me, Urbs, Dave and Mike together somewhere around the 4th of July, and about a prospective party that Dana would like to throw that same holiday. "whatever gets us together, I'll be game for" was my general reply. for the me the place is secondary, simply spending time with my crew of friends, and the joy I get from that, is what I most anticipating.
may 17th, 2005 ~ tuesday
tools of the trade, from Bill G
     ok, so now I've got Microsoft's Visual Web Developer 2005 on my system, following a download of the suite that weighed in 500 megs. whew. it took me some time to get the hang of it, and it's a very tenuous, minimal hang of it that I have, currently. basically my concern right now is with aspx files, with which I had some success opening and running. I've been able to mess around with the webgrid/datagrid samples I got yesterday, and launch pages contain virtual content, though the content doesn't display in a workable fashion. gonna keep rearranging the code, cutting out this and rewriting that to see if I turn on the virtualness. this is gonna take some time, if it is at all possible and within my ability.
may 16th, 2005 ~ monday
the quest for the virtual grail continues
     now back to this earnest attempt at virtualizing the glut of journally content here: I downloaded a rather large demo (it's a good 158 megs) of a webgrid program by Infragistics, which says it can deliver the dynamic, load on demand results I'm looking for. I installed it, and yeah, semi-excitingly, some of the demo exe's it came with do perform the strived-for "scroll down to load more rows" trick. likewise for the number of tweakable samples also included, I assume, but I can't actually play with them cuz they're written in C and Visual Basic. now I need the ability to work with such code, and to do so I'm gonna hafta download Microsoft's Visual Studio. so that's the next step on the virtual agenda, I'll get that developer's program tomorrow.
may 15th, 2005 ~ sunday
face to face, after 5 years
     finally seeing and catching up with Amy in person was a lot of good times all rolled up into one night. through the universal language of music is how we mainly reconnected: later on, when the party was dying down, I picked her very musical brain and learned much about her taste in artists and styles, which in many ways mirror my own. amongst the number of things we discussed, Amy confided in me the sonic and spiritual virtues of K-os, an artist that's close to her heart. his music defines a very strong part of the person who Amy is, I think, and it's a person I'm glad to to have seen again. 5 years was a long time to not see her, but those years seemed to melt away by the early a.m. hours. mainly cuz Amy is just cool like that, I reconfirmed last night. she's a similar-wavelength person I'm glad to have on my extended team.
may 14th, 2005 ~ saturday
a party with a purpose
     I'm heading over to Williamsburg tonight, to attend Amy's housewarming party there. I reconnected with Amy online in the past year, we email every once inna while, but I actually haven't seen her in person since we worked together, in the summer of 2000. so tonight's gonna be interesting, in a good and "long time in the making" sort of way.
may 13th, 2005 ~ friday
Raging Bull
     started watching another dvd on the installment plan tonight (that is, watching a coupla scenes at a time), tonight's film being Raging Bull. and even though I'm not too far into it, what I've seen so far is mesmerizingly raw and emotionally powerful. thank God for Bobby DeNiro and Martin Scorcese, they make such beautiful cinema together.
may 12th, 2005 ~ thursday
the status of its stasis
     according to Mike, this site is "still not browser happy." yeah, I have left the wayward not-so-virtual version up, though I'm still scrounging the internet and researching this virtual content project at home. I demand satisfaction on this project, and I'll continue until I bump my head against the ceiling of impossibility, if that be the case.
may 11th, 2005 ~ wednesday
third time's the galactic charm?
     I read in either AM NY or Metro (leaning towards to the AM) that at a recent advance screening of Star Wars Episode III, Steven Spielberg cried during the finale of the movie. well. perhaps this final sequel of the Star Wars epic may have some good things going for it, unlike the last two, Phantom Menace and Attack of The Clones, which weren't all that glowingly received by the critics. hopefully Anakin's transformation to Darth Vader'll be worth my $10.
may 10th, 2005 ~ tuesday
cross-browser confusion
     Mike wrote me the following yesterday ~ le quote:

as it is, when i open ye olde site on mineth machine using safari, all
of the journal content is no longer in the middle. i get 2 boxes of
text, one upper left, one upper middle. both about 6 lines long and
about 42 characters long, give or take. the one in the middle appears
to start w/ the end of 2004 and go backwards?, and the one in the left
starts current and goes backwards. thought you should know. also,
loadtime was dramaaaaaaaaaaaaaaatically increased.

same issue on firefox, though much shorter loadtime (almost instantaneous).

don't get the text at all on ie. just says i lack the plugin to view text/html

endquote. argh. I checked at work, and from the Window 2000/IE desktop there, my site rendered fine, even in its non-virtuosity. but on that same desktop using Firefox (and using Firefox for the first real time, I think) I was able to confirm the scrambled code that Mike observed. and I'll take his word for the similar Safari confusion. I don't wanna make my site IE-only, which I guess it has become, all of a sudden. I'll leave it up for now, the journal window of the front page'll eventually have to be rewritten, cuz this vtable-with-data-binding doesn't seem to be cross-browser-compatible, right now at least.
may 9th, 2005 ~ monday
Family Guy
     last night I took a half-hour sabbatical from usual little-to-no-tv-watching stance and caught the lastest (2nd?) episode of the revived Family Guy. my God it was hilarious. the bit with Peter as a Wonder Twin "playing the waiting game" made me laugh out loud, in a fit of "that's so wrong but so funny"-ness. his joke had me chuckling for a good moment after it ended. the parts with the high school students were very laughable too. the show hasn't missed an insane beat, I'm happy to say.
may 8th, 2005 ~ sunday
mother's day, and the virtual no-go
     after tweaking the hell out of the MSDN virtual code that I found yesterday and making it HTML-ready, I put it to use on this Happy Mother's Day, as the means of serving/displaying the glut of pseudo-content on this site (ie, my 7 months of journal entries) on demand. but in the HTML conversion, it seems like I lost the virtual magic I was going for, because instead of loading only when they're scrolled to, the other below-the-visible-window entries are loading in full. dang. back to the drawing board, and to see if I try this virtual stuff another way. at least it gave me an opportunity to organize my journal, which displays well enough, if non-dynamically, on the front page, though all the actual html data behind the entries has been moved to another folder.
may 7th, 2005 ~ saturday
if you dream it, they will code it
     I've been thinking and theorizing about the efficiency of this site. on the front page there's 7 months of journal entries available, but you can only see the last few days worth of them. so I got to wondering, what if all the journal content that below the horizon of the visible window appeared only when you scrolled to it? that is, scrolling down would call the content, which really isn't there, but immediately appears there upon request. if this theorized ability were possible, it would drastically reduce the pageload/loading time of my site. instead of loading all 180+ kilobytes of data, only a fraction of that would be needed at any time, since only that fraction would be visible.

     well, my digital dream is quite possible, and has been for some time. googling the terms "onscroll" and "load" brought me to the MSDN section of, of all places, Microsoft's online realm. I specifically landed on a page there by a Lead Program Manager who's nicknamed himself "the DHTML Dude." through the magic of what's know as virtual listing, data binding (displaying infro from another page within a parent page) and client-side coding, the DHTML Dude explained, huge amounts of data could be viewed a more manageable and way-faster manner. the key word is "virtual," keeping the data elsewhere until it's requested/scrolled to, and the trick is making that "onscroll" transition to the virtual data seamless, transparent and instantaneous.

     but I shouldn't say "trick", cuz the Dude showed the precise code to make virtual listing work. seeeing the formerly theorized being achieved, I downloaded a couple of his demonstrations, ones that used some lists written in XML. which is a markup language I don't use, but as of today I'm learning the ins and outs of. necessity is the mother of invention, as they say. so inspired by the feasibility of my goal, my current task is seeing how I can get my HTML content (which is full of CSS and styles) to work with the Dude's XML-specific code, which doesn't seem to support the styling of lists. I'm working hard on that right now, towards a leaner, meaner, virtually data bound version of my website, to quote the quite-awesome DHTML Dude.
may 6th, 2005 ~ friday
Rod, Nancy, John and Nasir
     today was a day of many musical adventures. way early in the morning before work, around 6 am or maybe even a few minutes before, I decided to invest myself in the mix cd of requests I'm putting together for a co-worker. some days ago I helped her find an online snippet of a Rod Stewart song that she enjoyed, and so I found myself buying his cover of These Foolish Things (no, not the Jewel version) offa iTunes before I had my breakfast.

     and before either of my eggs slipped their mortal shell, I was on to my second download. this next song was an unplanned one: I had my radio tuned, as it always is, to WNYC, so that I can absorb some of NPR's Morning Edition. maybe once during the hour or so that I listen before I head out the door by 7, they'll bridge a coupla news segments with a song. they usually skew towards oldies, and today was no exception. this morning's musical choice was a warm ray of springtime sunshine, brought to life by a string of lyrical "shoo-shoo-shoo's" that preceded the song's titular word, "Sugartown". I mentally jotted down just enough of Sugartown's other lyrics to enable a googling of its singer, who I learned was Nancy Sinatra. it was very well received when I played it at work; my co-worker, who sponsored my first Stewart download, asked it I could play it again, which I happily did.

     I followed up the morning's downloads with another pair of iTunes purchases around noon, towards both my co-worker's mix, and my own education of current radio tracks. I shelled out the big bucks, all $2 of them, for r&b crooner John Legend's Let's Get Lifted Again, and Just A Moment, by Nas. if my co-worker, a mother with children my age, is into these songs, then they must have something good going for them, and by finally hearing them I can maybe atone for not doing so earlier.
may 5th, 2005 ~ thursday
hearts and thoughts they fade, fade away
     the train ride from West 96th Street down to Brooklyn (following maybe the last staff development of this school year) was as good an excuse as any to starting reading my next book, Joseph Conrad's Heart Of Darkness. I chose it because a) I'm not gonna re-re-read The Adventures Of Tom Sawyer just yet, and b) I couldn't find my other possible next-read, H.G. Well's The Invisible Man. I only managed to get no more than a few pages into Heart Of Darkness, because that powerful cocktail of sitting-in-a-conference-room-for-7-hours + less than 8 hours of sleep last night (this has quickly become the strived-for sleep alotment for optimal next-day performance) caught up to me, all of a sudden. and the persuasive rocking of the train, surely that was factor too.
may 4th, 2005 ~ wednesday
endnote to a Russian classic
     I read through the end of Notes From The Underground today. the first section of it proved to be quite heady stuff, with its rants and diatribes against society and the author's own failings. it built up a structure of pessimism that founded the following character interactions very well. their sniping interplay, and the Dostoevsky's dark-eyed, insular world view and personality, are what fascinated me the most about this work. it's not often that I come across a literary figure who goes through such pains to assail his own character, and paint himself as a twisted little shrew of a man. but it was truth about himself that he was seeking, and despite his bookish mind he chose not to escape his worn-down, erratic and venomous self, but to acknowledge it.
may 3rd, 2005 ~ tuesday
I came, I drew, I scanned
     I guess that art-related after-work conversation kickstarted something and provided some of the inspiration I needed, becuz I finally found some time and started employing my scanner in a creative way tonight. I digitized some by-hand creations of mine, that where expressly drawn to be scanned and tweaked on my computer. tonight's work may never be seen by the masses, not anytime soon probably, but at least I'm taking a step in the right direction.
may 2nd, 2005 ~ monday
drawer's block
     sometime in the afternoon, in the calm that follows the manageable storm of my workday, I reflected with a co-worker about the version of "writer's block" that afflicts people who paint, draw, sketch and design. I think she said that she had at last broken though a bout of stagnation, while I, myself, I'm still trapped in artistic limbo. I told her that I had bought a new scanner, with the high hopes of using it to transform my paper line art. but since getting it last Wednesday, I've done nothing more than scan in a few family photos. hmmm. wonder when my spark of inspiration will come, perhaps it's still gestating.
may 1st, 2005 ~ sunday
Zaphod Beeblebrox For President
     well, 2046 proved to be just too popular a movie last night, as tickets were sold out by the time Kim and I got there. she and I and Steve still wanted to make a go at another movie, and after reviewing our options, I recommended 3-Iron, a new (at least to American shores) foreign film that I just read about in the latest ish of TimeOutNY, that was playing downtown at the Sunshine Theatre. it was one of the most subtle, delicate, and emotionally satisfying movies in my cinematic memory. occasionally funny, it had a quiet affect to it that grew more sublime as the flim progressed. and though 3-Iron had music and the secondary characters spoke throughout, the actions and interactions of the two main characters likened them to those of the silent films of old, for me (the last movie that I saw that was in a similar vein, was Little Voice). for those reasons and more, 3-Iron has a magic to it that I hope the wider movie-going populace experiences, as it's one of those smaller films that inertially moves you to a happier place.

     and now for something completely different (well, genre-wise anyway). if the new Hitch-Hiker's Guide To The Galaxy movie (which I haven't seen) has done anything, it's produced the most hilarious music video I've seen in a while. it features Sam Rockwell (aka, "who's that actor? I've seen him before somewhere, he's cool") as the "un-dumb" but actually clueless rock star/party animal president of the universe. he's all about "democracy and stuff like that." the music video to this movie-related song is a must-download of inane greatness. so damn catchy, I've hit the rewind button way too many times today.
april 30th, 2005 ~ saturday
Saturday cinema
     gonna make an attempt at seeing 2046 this evening with Kim and Steve and whoever may join us. Kim suggested we get there, to the Regal Cinema theatre, an hour ahead of time, to increase whatever chances we have of actually getting tickets to this high-demand film (which is one of the bigger attractions of the great but woefully short TriBeCa Film Festival).
april 29th, 2005 ~ friday
after-work option
     my org's having one of its semi-usual post-work socials nearby my site, a mere stone's throw actually, at some bar on West 4th or 3rd. whether or not I go remains to be seen.
april 28th, 2005 ~ thursday
Tony, Maggie, and Wong
     continued watching Rain Man (been doing so on the installment plan this week), up through to the casino scene, when I decided to switch discs and put on In The Mood For Love, to reacquaint myself with Wong Kar-Wai's evocative masterpiece before seeing his latest creation, 2046, this Saturday. I watched In The Mood For Love all the way through, and the film was even more beautiful and romantic and thought-provoking, this second time seeing it.
april 27th, 2005 ~ wednesday
new hardware
     I took a trip during my lunch break today, to buy a scanner. this was no ordinary, walk down the street though, it was in reality a two-trains-to-get-there ("there" being the Staples near 8th and Broadway), three-trains-to-get-back-to-the-Village voyage. I ended up being on-the-go for a good 50 minutes of my hour-long break, but I was victorious in my mission, securing the $30 HP Scanjet 4600 that's now at home, and working quite well.
april 26th, 2005 ~ tuesday
greatest dream ever that wasn't dreamed by me
     this morning I was told something that very much made my day, something that has instanteously become one of my favorite anecdotes. place and setting was work, a bit before 7:45 am, during that amniotic period that precedes the official start of our workday (that is, 8:00 am). I'm alternatively milling about my desk and making small talk with the other teacher/member of our classroom "team," as she likes to call us. a few minutes later one of the therapists comes into our classroom to check her email, cuz the therapy room's laptop can't go online for some reason. so she's sitting there for a moment, not long, and then says something to the effect of, "Roger, I want to tell you about this dream I had, that you were in." I captively listened as she took a minute or two to relate what she said was a very vivid and memorable dream of hers; unlike numerous ethereal ones that you forget quickly after them, she told us, she clearly recalled many details of this particular one. so in this dream of hers, I was in a band (which in reality I'm not, but it's clear as day to me why I was in her dream) and I was somewhere, maybe in a club, hanging out with Pharrell of N.E.R.D./Neptunes, and the one-and-only P. Diddy. I was already giddy with excitement from the whole me-in-someone's-else's-dream, me-as-a-musician-in-someone's-else's-dream things, so I literally had to laugh out when I heard those 2 musical celebrity names, and the fact that I would be hobnobbing with them (sidenote: Pharrell, I still got love for him, even following his overexposure. Diddy, well, I admired what he did through the B.I.G. days, though now I just watch Puff from afar for the spectacle that he is). and the reason why I was enjoying their company, my dreaming co-worker said, was because I had a demo tape I wanted to pass on, presumably to them. which simply broadened the ear-to-ear smile that was already gracing my face, during her dream-retelling. I somehow managed to sporadically suspend my stunned listening pleasure to enunciate my amazement about the this-and-thats of her music-inclined dream about me. and when she finished, I, still in a stupor caused by the dream's coolness, told her that I'm definitely telling others about it. and as for the overall musical theme of my co-worker's dream, it was provoked by, and further confirms, my status as the "music guy" at work. the label itself is a self-imposed one, to be sure, but I think it adequately describes one impression, one facet of my identity that has come shining through, what with all my at-work ipodding for the room's enjoyment, and the repeated question of "who's this?" when I play a song that catches someone's attention. it's worked me into someone's subconscious, which, to me, is just so amazing and entertaining to think about.
april 25th, 2005 ~ monday
2046
     more movie stuff: Kim re-asked me if I'm still in for catching the latest Won Kar Wai film, 2046 (which is a continuation of sorts to In The Mood For Love, an engaging and dreamy work that I wrote about before), when it screens this Saturday, as part of the TriBeCa Film Festival. "definitely" I told her.
april 24th, 2005 ~ sunday
Rain Man
     started watching one of my all-time favorite movies, Rain Man, tonight, right up through to the diner/toothpick scene (I choose the movie from my small pile of recently purchased, unopened (and some not yet seen) DVDs. the pile also includes Raging Bull, Harold And Maude, The Excorcist: Director's Cut, Beetlejuice, Army Of Darkness, Lost In Translation, and 1 or 2 more that escape me right now). anyway, I've seen Rain Man before, but always on TV, so I'm getting the complete Ray and Charlie Babbitt experience now. and as she told me in an email, Rain Man is also high on Dana's list of great movies. her favorite part is, quote, "the fish sticks part - "you want eight fish sticks? You want eight fish sticks!? Here Ray, here's your eight fish sticks!" Gotta go to Kmart. Gotta got to Kmart." to which there is only reply: "yeah."
april 23rd, 2005 ~ saturday
a-codin' I will go
     googled and found some fairly cool and interactive html code, that'll eventually make its way into a very dynamic page on this site. I'm working on it now, more as it develops.
april 22nd, 2005 ~ friday
a master at work
     quote:

"Street vendors lined Lexington Avenue on Saturday, pulling open their black garbage bags full of $25 Louis Vuitton knockoffs to overeager tourists. One among the many sold two $5 pencils to a spectacle-wearing, well-spoken Indian whose eye for a New York bargain is six years in the making. The deal done, the vendor warned him: 'One pencil will write only the truth, the other only lies, and it will be nearly impossible to tell one from the other.'"

     endquote. yesterday's edition of the Metro newspaper reprinted this intro to a short story by the renowned (and in some places reviled) author Salmon Rushdie, the short story being his contribution to the currently-running Festival of International Literature (it's sponsored by PEN, and Rushdie is also the President of its American Center). it's the fantastic element of the last line, the promise and the curse of such a writing implement, that most captivated me. perhaps one day I'll be able to read the story in full, and discover where Rushdie's lines, so full of magical potent, lead.
april 21st, 2005 ~ thursday
a life distilled, in a line of poetry
     "I have miles to go before I sleep" ~ Robert Frost
april 19th, 2005 ~ tuesday
tonight's show: The Hong Kong, at Rothko
     heading downtown tonight to see The Hong Kong. been waiting a while (since September) to see them again, so this gig is amongst my most eagerly awaited. George is in for the show, and Mike and James are doing their damnedest to come along too.
april 17th, 2005 ~ sunday
In The Company Of Ben (Stiller, that is)
     this afternoon me, Mike, Dana, Margalit, Jess and a slew of her friends are gonna see the new Neil LaBute play, This Is How It Goes, starring Ben Stiller, Amanda Peet and Jeffrey Wright. it'll be my first LaBute anything, having not caught any of his movies or other theatre works, so it'll be good to finally see something his caustic and controversial mind has produced.
april 16th, 2005 ~ saturday
Out Hud at the Bowery Ballroom next Saturday, April 23rd
     email of the day:
y'ello y'all. on April 23rd Out Hud will be playing a show at the Bowery Ballroom.

um, Out Hud, who? a reputable mp3 blogger had this to say of them:
"I firmly stand by my claim that Out Hud is the best show you'll see live... everyone is chomping at the bit for a more substantial dose of what their [2nd full-length release] is about... it's awesome. buy their albums, but more importantly, SEE THEM LIVE. if you've got someone special in your life, the music'll make you want to rub yourself all over them. if you don't have someone special in your life, chances are you'll find yourself rubbing yourself all over someone who will rapidly become pretty special."

a ringing endorsement if you ask me, though it only took a highly pleasurable song like "It's For You" to sway me to their side. Out Hud's sonic mission is getting the masses to dance with their downtown sound, a beautiful struggle in which they succeed. a popular music website called their sonic creations "delirious dance-pop, smart and innovative... [with] sexy sing-song vocals." Matt Perpetua, the preeminent mp3 pusher of fluxblog fame, said "It's For You" is the best dance pop song of the year so far.

I stumbled upon those accolades, though, AFTER hearing and realizing Out Hud's essential grooving sounds for myself. thru a coupla iTunes purchases ("One Life to Leave (A Requiem for a Requiem Verison)" is another enjoyable groove off a prior EP) and tracks from mp3 blogs, I convinced myself that I must go see them live. thus the 2 tickets that I bought, late last month. it was $15 a pop, and there's actually 2 other bands on the night's bill, so the fiver-a-band breakdown is financially nice.

check out Out Hud online beforehand, and if your next week Saturday schedule permits, take my other ticket or hit up this link, for the show. should be a cool time.

rockitdontstopit.

-- Rog

PS. Out Hud's almost 2 bands in 1, as 3 of its members are in the band !!! (chk-chk-chk).
april 15th, 2005 ~ friday
yet another workless Friday
     blessed be the latest no-work-today/three-day weekend. I'm not even sure why we have the day off; I asked a co-worker who wasn't entirely sure herself; she kinda figured that a day for staff development got rescheduled and freed up, perhaps. whatever, I dunno. the day off is especially welcome, cuz I've been a bit more drained this week than I usually am. I sat out the usual Thursday night fraternizing, if only cuz I didn't think I had the stamina to stay vertical for even a few more hours. unlike the Monday night of the Sonic Youth show, a night when George and I spent a good 5 hours on our feet, taking in the rock. now that was price worth paying then, but last night my muscles were nowhere near as prolific.
april 14th, 2005 ~ thursday
rock and or roll
     today's moment of Zen: listening to my students discuss "My Dad The Rock Star," a cartoon starring Gene Simmons of KISS. I haven't seen it, but I'd watch it once just for the thin-veiled rock jokes that're surely hidden within its dialogue. and if I were a writer on the show, I definitely make sure they riffed on Ozzy and have the Gene/father figure bite the head off a chocolate bat during one episode. that's a no-brainer.
april 13th, 2005 ~ wednesday
Village no input
     ok, I'm getting a little worried here. yesterday morning, around noon there was a water main break at the intersection of Carmine and Bleecker, which is where I work. Carmine, between Our Lady of Pompeii and the Italian restaurant across the street was flooded. can't-cross-the-street-flooded. people were stranded on either block. dirty brown water was gushing like a vortex down the nearest sewer. it was a scene, people were queuing on the corners just to watch the aquatic spectacle. I saw a camera phone or two being held in the air, to record the event. it even had an effect on my school, as my students had to end their lunch a bit early, and leave the downstairs cafeteria in case any errant pipewater found its way down there.

     us teachers discussed the possibility of school being cancelled today, should the water break on through to our educational side. thankfully that didn't occur. in store for today was structural damage of a different nature. the first clue that there was something strange in the neighborhood came when I noticed, again during my lunchtime break, that traffic in every direction near my school had come to a standstill. the crosswalks were all full of immobilized vehicles. I only had to walk and look a little further down 6th Avenue to see what the problem was. it involved a two-story building, a commercial space with some heavy construction going on, and its roof, which looked dangerously close to collapsing. the local fire department was assembling by the building, which now featured a large hole in its upper facade through which us pedestrians could clearly see the nearly caved-in roof. a fire truck had extended its cherry-picker arm to assess the damage, high in the air. on the street, frustrated drivers continued to idle and people and the occasional camera witnessed and digitized the event. later on in the day I joked with a co-worker that between yesterday and today, it seems that our little slice of the Village is going to hell in a handbasket. I wondered, what's going to be the next one-day mini-disaster.
april 11th, 2005 ~ monday
Sonic Youth tonight, at the Hiro Ballroom
     tonight I'll finally merge my years of being awed by Sonic Youth with my first time seeing them. the show's gonna be a way different trip than most of gigs I've seen in the past, if sheer longevity is a factor. SY's been a band since 1981, and husband and wife Thurston and Kim've been rocking since '78/79. but staying power aside, it's the brilliance and concussive, trashed and transformative power of their songs played live, that I'm bracing myself for. I have no idea what Sonic Youth's setlist will be tonight, probably a mix of the new and the old, but one thing's for sure: it's gonna be a wild time.
april 10th, 2005 ~ sunday
the taxman cometh
     ah, procrastination. you allowed me to wait until yesterday to get my taxes done. better yet, you had me go way the hell up into Queens to do so, providing me the wonderful opportunity to waste most of my Sunday traveling, for what ended up being a 15 minute sit-down with my tax preparer. at least it was pretty painless, and he convinced me that I'll be getting a tidy little refundary sum of money back this year from the IRS. yeah, we'll see.

     oh, and Odie's housewarming party last night: wall-to-wall coolness. I actually managed to sustain a few moments of mingling with people I didn't know, in addition to hanging with George, Dena, Mike, Dana and Jess. those mingly conversations centered mostly on Army of Darkness (a guy named Mike that I met hadn't seen it), and I was gently instructed to see the first 2 Evil Dead movies, which I myself haven't. I think that conversation somehow stemmed from one about the Office, both the new Americanized/Steve Carrell-starring version, and the origin, British one, cuz someone saw the DVD of the latter one sitting by Odie's living room tv.

     and I think one of the songs on the mix I made and brought instigated a short-lived bout of dancing from 2 ladies at the party. the rest of the tracks, well, they were barely audible above the din of the crowd, cuz the audio source was a small and not-so-powerful clock radio. I'll have to give the mix a louder spin at some other social event if I can. that was the only asterisk to a right-on time in my home borough, thanks to my fellow Brooklynite Odie.
april 9th, 2005 ~ saturday
house party in Brooklyn tonight (minus Kid and Play)
     tonight is that joyous occasion where I actually get to spend a Saturday night in Brooklyn. this so rarely happens, way more often than not the gravitional pull of Manhattan and friends on the island draw me there-ward. but Odie's "better late than never" house-warming party in Park Slope'll remind us all of the very-quite-niceness of places outside, and the fact that there is life outside of, Manhattan. in the immortal words of Nu Shooz, I can't wait.
april 8th, 2005 ~ friday
last night-o-mania
a list of last night's highlights:
  • bought Lost In Translation (I'm the last person on earth to not see it) and
         Army of Darkness, for $9.99 each at Tower
  • saw Allan Cumming and Katie Holmes on West 34th, posing for paparazzi shots
         outside the FiFi awards (frangance industry's self-accolades)
  • met up w/ Kim, whom I haven't seen in ages, to try & see Donnie Darko: Director's Cut
  • wandered with Kim & found possibly the last place in NY to sell a slice of pizza for $1
  • missed Donnie Darko due to it being sold out
  • learned lesson: get to box office as early as possible, to convert passes to tix
  • hopped L train with Kim to go to KEXP Listener's Party that Jess was going to
  • got to Cellar with Kim, where KEXP party was at, discovered Jess was not there
  • walked to Union Square to Kim; chatted and laughed there while glimpsing
         skater girls and boys out of the corner of my eyes
  • parted ways with Kim, had a much better time than just seeing the movie we missed
  • april 7th, 2005 ~ thursday
    why are you wearing the stupid man suit?
         to Frank the Bunny: hopefully me and Kim'll see ya on the big screen tonight (ala the free screening of Donnie Darko: Director's Cut).

         and to the dude driving down Bleecker, pumping Rock You Like A Hurricane by The Scorpions from your car's stereo: you're awesome.
    april 6th, 2005 ~ wednesday
    a one-day respite from work, in honor of his passing
         in response to the Vatican choosing this Friday for the Pope's funeral, my school and other Catholic schools will be closed for the day, so that their constituents can observe the ceremonies, and pay their last respects.
    april 5th, 2005 ~ tuesday
    notes
         started reading Dostoevsky's Notes From Underground this morning, on the morning train commute. it's a little obtuse, the beginning at least, but perhaps I should as much from a 19th century intellectual such as the one I'm reading.
    april 4th, 2005 ~ monday
    free screening of Donnie Darko: The Director's Cut
    an email I sent out this afternoon. quote:

         "I was sent this today:

    [You] and one guest are cordially invited to a special screening of
    Donnie Darko: The Director's Cut
    Thursday, April 7, 2005 at 08:00 PM
    Loews 34th Street // 312 W. 34th St. // New York, NY 10001

    yup, the latest installment of a free flick for one of you, if you wanna join me. the get-there time would probably be closer to 7, to possibly wrangle a spot on the possible line (one of them first-come, first served dealies).

    hit me back if you have any interest. -- Rog"

         I got 2 responses, I'm awaiting confirmation from one of them.
    april 3rd, 2005 ~ sunday
    Ioannes Paulus PP. II, 1920 ~ 2005
         as I and much of the world learned yesterday, Pope John Paul II has passed away.

         I wrote the following to a few friends this early evening: "it might be best [for me] to get as much rest as possible before work tomorrow. it could be quite a day, given that I work at a Catholic school... and obviously the impact of the Pope's passing is going to have a strong effect on the people and staff there. even I have felt his absence, in my own way. and I'm foreseeing the possibility of discussing this with my students, and [I wonder] what I'll see in the eyes of the principal, who is a nun, when I greet her in the morning."
    april 2nd, 2005 ~ saturday
    have family, will entertain
         my Long Island family's coming over today (my aunt, and cousins both older and younger), which means I gotta transform myself into "entertainer" mode, which I've been looking forward to. though any elaboration on the awesomeness of Sin City will, like my Cowboy mouth comments, will come in the near future.
    april 1st, 2005 ~ friday
    Sin City
         I'm about to head out to go catch a 6pm, opening day screening of Sin City with Todd and Matthew. insert months and months of anticipation here.

         gonna have to leave any lengthier reflections on last night's Cowboy Mouth show til later, but right now I will say this: that was a pretty damn good show.
    march 31st, 2005 ~ thursday
    a frightening reality
         last night I finished reading 1984 (excluding the Appendix and Afterword, which I completed today). it's such a devastating, disturbing, eye-opening work of fiction, and the most terrifying book I've ever read. not terrifying in the horror-movie, cheap scare kind of way, but frightening in the sense that the suffocating, brutal regime (I almost called it a society, but it's certainly not one) portrayed in Orwell's book seemed so pervasive, so all-encompassing, and so real. 1984 has torn a hole in my consciousness of the way things are, and the way things might be. and Orwell's text-within-the-text analysis of man, socioeconomics, government, progress and war is sheer brilliance. it was so engrossing, as engrossing as the external plot; if that were an actual book, I would read it cover to cover.

         I don't know what I'm gonna read next, guess I'll make that choice and start a new book tomorrow. as for tonight, the plan is to meet up at Coppersmiths for drinks, and then hoof it back down to BB King's for the Cowboy Mouth show. we should get there in time catch the opening act, The Legendary J.C.'s, too.
    march 30th, 2005 ~ wednesday
    a quote that is burned into my memory
    "If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face—forever."

         those damning and cautionary words constitute my absolute favorite line from 1984. I finally came across that sentence today, as I move toward the waning pages of the book. and I say "finally" because I've known and internalized that quote years before reading them in the actual context of Orwell's genius literary work (it was half a decade or so ago in college that I stumbled upon a quotation of the line; I was so spontaneously moved by the power of the words that I immediately had to scribble them down on a scrap of paper, to re-transcribe and memorize them later).

         and today, that line, under the force of gravity created by all the other words that preceded it, exhausts and crushes me with more emotion and finality, than my first out-of-context confrontation with its words. that sentence so perfectly crystallizes one of Orwell's sentiments within the book, and I'm anxious to see how that is resolved with the forthright heart of the main character, a heart that dares not be crushed beneath the iron bootheel of eternal inhumanity.
    march 29th, 2005 ~ tuesday
    my main regret
         you know, I've made some mistakes in my life. I once removed the "DO NOT REMOVE" safety tag from an extention cord. I've done kareoke without drinking enough beforehand. one time I decided not to step on a pigeon when I had a perfect chance (that feathered rat totally wouldn't've seen it coming). yes, I have sinned. but my latest, greatest error in judgment, what's been killing me as of late, is my recent decision to order only one box of Samoa Girl Scout cookies, from a co-worker. why oh why did I get 2 boxes of chocolate chip, when instead I could've doubled or maybe even tripled my order of the heaven-sent Samoas? those coconut-topped confections have instantly become my favorite cookie. as soon as I noticed how deliciously superior they are to the other cookies I bought, I became very conservative in my eating them, budgeting their intake to only a few a day. and now I'm on my last one, alas. I think tomorrow I'll give in to temptation, and when I partake of my final Samoa, I'll remind my future self to order multiple boxes of those ambrosial delights.
    march 28th, 2005 ~ monday
    what would do you if I sat out this song?
         yesterday, just before leaving George's sometime after midnight, Mike handed him and me our tickets for the Cowboy Mouth show this Thursday (Dana and someone else'll be joining us as well). George made some inquiry about the seating arrangement for the show, and Mike said something to the effect of, "Don't worry about seats. This is the kind of band where the lead singer will come over to you and taunt you if you're sitting down. Trust me, everyone will be standing up." ha, good. if Cowboy Mouth's the tear-the-roof-off-this-place kind of band I've read them to be, then they'll be best enjoyed in an upright, vertical position.
    march 27th, 2005 ~ sunday
    holy crap! style sheets!
         nothing short of a Lee Goldsteinism can capture the epiphanous discovery I made today (though it's something obvious to, and long-used by, serious page designers), that the cascading style sheet is a beautiful, time-saving, code-shortening thing. toying around with a css file to enhance my front page links, it "dawned" on me that similar, dynamic improvements could be done for my journal entries' dates and titles. now I can stamp the same settings for that daily info in 1 line of code, instead of the 3 lines it used to take me. multiply that by 180 or so entries, and we're talking a leaner, meaner site, underneath. "style-sheet.css" -- I like it alawt.
    march 26th, 2005 ~ saturday
    linked for your pleasure
         yes, as the ever-lovin' sources from the last entry said, I've snazzified my site in the most elementary of ways, by linking out to the sites of a few recently-mentioned bands. hey, it's a start.

         in an hour or so I'll be MTAing up to George's for a chill night of DVDs with him and Mike, who just called me, mid this sentence. 9 pm's when it's all going down, Upper West Side style.
    march 25th, 2005 ~ friday
    tweekend
         now that I'm on vay-kay, will I use the time to work on some coding tweeks for this site? sources say...
    march 24th, 2005 ~ thursday
    Aprilalooza
         Mike sent me and others the following yesterday:

    "Subject: Concert Alert!
    yo,
    my all time favorite live band, Cowboy Mouth, is playing at BB King's next thursday. I'm going, definitely, no questions. Who wants to join me? Tix are $18 advance. I'm going to go to get them at the box office, so hopefully fewer charges. I'd like to go tomorrow, so let me know who wants in and how many and let's make it happen. jam can vouch for their excellence. rog, you have no choice but to attend. the rest of you would be fools to miss it. so let me know asap. -- mwm"

    to which I replied, to him et al:

    "Subject: Cowboy Mouth, and more bands to catch in April

    well, seeing as how I have no choice but to attend, ha ha, you're obliged to pick me up a ticket then, Mike. I'll hit ya back monetarily at the next opportunity.

    as for April, it could be a helluva month for live music. consult your calendars...

    April 19th: The Hong Kong, a beloved NY band of mine (see my Oct. 1st/very first website entry of last year for my declaration of love for them) will be playing the next VICIOUS monthy party (http://jenyk.com/VICIOUS.htm) at Rothko. when tickets are available, I'll be snapping up a couple, as The HK are a can't-miss band. 3 others'll be playing that night too (The Harlem Shakes, for one).
    check out a few HK songs here ("Maserati" is full of buzzing downtown gorgeousness):
    http://www.etherdrag.com/thehongkong/audio.html
    and definitely devote some broadband energy into downloading a pastiche vid of recent live songs:
    http://www.etherdrag.com/thehongkong/movies/hktrailer.mov

    April 27th: I'm thisclose (notice the lack of space between those words) to getting tix to see Morningwood, another NY band. gotta love their name, and with songs called "One Track Mind" and "Take Off Your Clothes," the moniker's probably justified. I'm liking the lil bit I've heard of them so far (sample lyrics: "nuhnuhnuhnew york girls, c'mon you know you're hot"), and according to their site's press page, the lead singer's a pretty raucous and electic lady. the band's opening for the Kaiser Chiefs tomorrow, so they've definitely got street cred. when they play this 4/27 show, they're actually opening for The Raveonettes, that Danish group of good repute, also worth checking out. so come for Morningwood, stay for Raveonettes, vice-versa, whatevs.
    read more about MW here: http://www.morningwoodrocks.com/bio_press.php

    I gots me a few more music show things on the April horizon, more about them as they materialize.

    also, The Album Leaf are playing Northsix on April 1st. I'll let George field that one, cuz he proposed going to it, and his better knowledge of the band supercedes my non-existant knowledge of them.

    your sonic voyeur du jour,
    -- Rog"
    march 23rd, 2005 ~ wednesday
    he's on it (vacation, that is)
         I'd like to say that I've earned at least this half-day of pre-vacation work I have today, seeing as how I've been up since about 1:45 am this morning, and from that time til 6 am, I did actual job-related work. it was something that I could've possibly gotten away with not doing, but when I woke up at a quarter to 2, my mind set upon the realization that it would be great if I could get this project, one that had been on my mind for a week or so, done before the Spring vacation (which is tomorrow through April 3rd). so I lurched from bed, flipped on and hunkered down in front of the computer, and over the next four hours turned my ethereal idea into reality. sometime before I set off for my morning commute (which was painless compared to yesterday's fire-delayed one) I emailed the fruits of my labor, a Word document, to myself, so that I could reproduce them at work. there I ran into a coupla hitches that aimed to derail my early morning productivity. the first computer I tried to print my document on jammed quite nastily, issuing a torn and smudged half of a page. then I tried the next computer. I wasn't aware of this problem before, but all of a sudden Word, the program itself, refused to run or open any Word documents, citing some arcane operational error. very disheartening. in time I returned to the first computer, fumbled with a few more unconstructive attempts at printing before I opened up the printer, took out a removeable section, and discovered the culprit: the half piece of paper that was still in the printer, from my original misprint. I extracted it, and all printing systems were go after that; my document printed with ease. Murphy's Law had devolved into Murphy's Bill, thankfully.

         and because it was a half-day, my responsibilities limited due to the shortened day, I had the time today to transform another thought-of-a-project into a tangible form, and issue to those whom it was intended for, in the nick of pre-vacation time. literally a minute, if not seconds, before some of them left for their own vacation. I was very much going "whew" in my head; the harried minutes leading up to document hand-over were worth it. my productivity was meant to sponsor productivity in others, over the break, and if today's work does that, I'll be satisfied.

         the work day, post-dismissal, ended with two unexpected surprises, though only one of which I'm at liberty to discuss here. I was writing down something when the lights went out in the classroom, and it took me a few seconds to register that the Happy Birthday song being sung by my co-workers was intended for me. well, for me and another co-worker with a March birthday, actually. not that I didn't enjoy it, all the same. two Fridays ago, on the day before my actual birthday, everyone originally serenaded me with the song, so the re-celebration of my birthday today was certainly unexpected, but just as nice and welcome. when it came time to blow out the candles on the chocolate cake in our honor, my co-worker and I humorously decided that we had to do it at the same time. with wishes in mind we did, and served our fellow well-wishers and ourselves. I'm lucky to work with what is a wonderful group of people, overall. as I ease myself into the next 11 days of vacation, I'll definitely keep their kind gestures, and positive influence, in mind.
    march 22nd, 2005 ~ tuesday
    this train don't stop there anymore
         I endured a commute from hell this morning, along with what must be thousands of other New Yorkers -- it was literally a trial by fire, I can safely say. my particular version of the morning ordeal began innocently enough. I got on my usual 2 train a little after 7 am. things, and the train, were rolling along nicely for the first part of my ride. then we came to Sterling Street. instead of the doors opening, closing, then us chugging along to the next stop, the train paused there. I've unfortunately grown accustomed to trains stopping for a minute or more at certain stations (to my chagrin, the 1/9 does this every morning at Chambers Street) so it was no big deal at first. but as 5, then 10, then fifteen minutes passed, suddenly it became clear that this was no ordinary stoppage. the train's conductor did make announcements in the meantime, but at first they were elusively uninformative. "we are are experiencing delays at this time" or something superficial to that effect, was what we were told, early on into the interruption. by degrees he let on that they had "a situation up ahead." in time the situation became an "emergency" one, and eventually the conductor relented and told us that a fire had halted service to Atlantic Avenue, both uptown and downtown along its related lines. apparently one person, if not more, had to be carried off out of some other train or station, because of the smoke and fire conditions. my own train was going nowhere, my morning commute had come to a standstill.

         prior to being enlightened to the true severity of the train problem, in those intermediary minutes of cluelessness, I responded like a number of steadfast fellow commuters, by just sitting there. sitting there and holding onto the faint hope that time would solve our transportational dilemma. just wait it out. I began reading, looking occasionally from the book's pages to notice people trickling off the train, more fed up with the train's inertia than me. but as the time neared 8 am, with me on a motionless train for the better part of an hour, I decided that if I wanted to get to work sometime in the morning, however late, I'd best find some alternate route. so I got off the train, and entered the station, still not really knowing how I would manage to get to Manhattan. I quickly gathered, or more like overheard that this business-attired man, as he asked the token booth clerk directions to the next nearest non-affected train station, was in the same bind. I didn't at all catch the actual directions he received, but when I saw him head off towards the upstairs exit to the street, I figured that if I tailed him, I'd be moving in the right direction. so I did. when he stopped to ask a passerby outside for further directions to the Botanic Gardens Station (where we stranded 2/3/4/5 riders could catch the unafflicted B and Q), I stopped too. properly re-directed, he, and I, continued. I would only need to follow my erstwhile "guide" for a block or two, because we joined a transient queue of people who could only be headed for the same destination. after 10 minutes or so of walking, I reached the station, which was full of a sea of people. when the first train, a Q, came, I internally mirrored the spoken sentiment of a women near me: "I'm not gonna even try and get on." yeah, I thought I'd avoid the maddening, massive crush to get on this train, and try the next one. when the following one, a B train, rolled in, it looked nearly as packed as the last one. but this time, when the train's doors opened in front of me, no one got off, and no one on the platform dared get on. no one, except me.

         I inhaled my way onto this B train, amazed that I actually fit, and cautious not to invoke the ire of the rest of the sardine-like passengers. I waited an interminable minute for the train's doors to close, to see if any extruding part of me would get pinched by them as they closed (I was pretty much flush against the doors) -- thankfully I was saved by a few centimeters of actual space in front of them. the train heaved into movement, and soon was hurtling down the tracks as normal trains do. the next station was a trying one, as the influx of people was oppressive. us hurdled masses were far more hurdled than than we cared to be, any personal space was a luxury we had to do without. we kept up the sardine thing for a few stations, after which I eventually enjoyed some breathing room, and an actual section of handrail to grab onto. I guess I spent 20 or 30 minutes on that B train, which took me right to West 4th Street. when I finally walked into OLP, the time was 9 o'clock. I thought I was going to lose so much of my morning, but in reality I was merely an hour late. underground and in the trains, though, the time seemed to pass far more slowly, I felt. anyway, the cavalcade of "good mornings" I received was enough to snap me out of whatever daze my stop-and-go commute had put me in, though the ordeal has left me with the lasting reminder that I, like so many other city-dwellers, am at the mercy of the MTA. a shut-down in transit service can possibly shut down my day.
    march 21st, 2005 ~ monday
    The Orange, Resucked
         I finished re-re-reading A Clockwork Orange tonight (this being my third time reading it, I believe). I'm tempted to call the book brain candy, because of its thoroughly tactile, visceral, excitable language and voice. but I'm equally awed by the underpinning layers of meaning and social commentary that found the text's plot, and they're far more pronounced and profound and meaningful for me, this time around, some years after the last time I read the book. the passage of time, the other books on personhood and existence I've recently read, and this point where I am in life (a transitional one, to be sure) -- these things colored my present reading of A Clockwork Orange, and at their nexus is where I map out this particular encounter with the book. I don't know where and what condition I'll find myself the next time I read it, but those factors will, either subtlely or overtly, strengthen the poignancy of Burgess' masterwork, and I look forward to that.
    march 20th, 2005 ~ sunday
    seriously, where's my Flux capacitor? (the unfortunate sequel post
         two days ago I made a throw-away joke-of-a-subject-line that referenced the pseudo-technology behind everybody's favorite time-traveling vehicle, the gull-winged DeLorean from Back To The Future, for Friday's journal entry. well, today comes the sad news that John DeLorean, the renegade executive and designer behind the car that bore his name, has passed away, following complications from a stroke. this is a bittersweet moment, as the man will be missed, but at the very least, he and his unforgettable creation will live on in our cinematic and collective memory.
    march 19th, 2005 ~ saturday
    another birthday, another bar
         despite the annoying head cold and sore throat I'm currently nursing, I'm gonna make my way over to Dive 75 tonight, as will Jess, Dan, and George, for a double-birthday get-together/drink-together for Dan Rohtbart's lady Betsy and a friend of hers. they picked a swell spot for the occasion, though Dive 75 is hardly a "dive" by any stretch of the imagination. it's way too nice and clean a joint for such a moniker. and it's on the Upper West Side, to boot. now Manitoba's and Siberia, the latter being located in the shadow of Port Authority, those are dives. very dirty, very rock-n-roll. tatooed barkeeps and the like. though tonight's tavern'll be far more on the classier side. there ain't no big problem in that, really.
    march 18th, 2005 ~ friday
    where's a flux capacitor when you need one?
         in lieu of doing the teacherly thing, I headed up by Columbia Universityland for one of our seasonal staff trainings today. unfortunately I left both of the books I'm reading right now (A Clockwork Orange, and Freedom, by a modern philosopher named Osho) at home on my bed, forgetting to stuff them into my messenger bag in the morning -- I felt quite lost and out of sorts during my train rides up and downtown. not that I mind listening to music when I'm on the subway, but it's just that I'm very attached to reading as I'm on-the-go, and I'm so very absorbed by my current reads that I actually look forward to the commute, so that I can pick up where I left off. also time/my commute seems to pass faster when I've got my head in the literary clouds. so I had to improvise and make due with doing a crossword puzzle, which I usually enjoy, when I'm stationary, though. oh well. not the biggest problem in the world, and I suppose there's a silver lining, it being that I have that much more of the 2 books to enjoy later on.
    march 17th, 2005 ~ thursday
    hello tomorrow
    "whenever i wake up
    trying to take a shape of
    turning to the whole wide world I made up
    the lights are golden..."

         -- dreamy lyrics by Karen O (Yeah Yeah Yeahs), for, of all things, a Spike Jonze-directed Adidas commercial. I watched the video online once, it's cool, but I was far more enraptured by Karen's singing. so I stripped the vid's audio into an mp3, dropped it onto the Pod, and put it on repeat. joy.
    march 16th, 2005 ~ wednesday
    Invasion Of The Village Snatchers
         yesterday morning, a film crew positioned outside the Christopher Street 1/9 Station, where I exit for work, forced me to stray from my usual path down the east side of Seventh Avenue. I literally had to cross the street, walk a bit, then return to my regular side of the street, all to make up what typically is a 2 second, 10-foot-or-so transition to the other side of the street. semi-bothersome. and I didn't even get to attach a name to the transgessing production. at the time all I knew was that it involved a stunt coordinator, whose title I saw labeled on the side of a trailer across the street, in the afternoon, and that extras or some other group of people were using a nearby church/school for some reason. well, the mystery was solved this evening, by complete happenstance: scrolling threw a news site, I saw that a movie called Just My Luck was filming in my section of the Village, and the star was no other than that teen queen herself, Lindsay Lohan. she's just the latest in a long list of stars and movies to shoot in my neck of the Manhattan woods. Law And Order, Hack (cancelled but featuring the excellent David Morse), and a slew of other city-set shows and flicks have all invaded my area. if I'm not mistaken, Ralph Lauren has a townhouse across the street from my school. I've had a handful of celebrity sightings by my job: Sandra Bernhard, Ricki Lake, James Gandolfini playing with his son at a local park (even in real-life dad-mode, he was kinda scary and intimidating)... so as far as stars in the Village are concerned, Lindsay Lohan pretty much had to take a number.
    march 15th, 2005 ~ tuesday
    Solid Gold
         I recently got my [digital] hands on 2 more VHS or Beta tracks, ones from Le Funk, their previous 2002 release. the song titles really show how much they wore their influences on their sleeves back then. Disco Paradise is cool, but Solid Gold is my runaway favorite of the pair -- it's 8 minutes of laser-cut, grooving precision.
    march 14th, 2005 ~ monday
    I wish they all could be Brazilian Girls
         I've stumbled upon some more mellow gold this evening, this time from the hypnotically rhythmic Brazilian Girls, and their song Me Gustas Cuando Callas. lovely, tomorrow's morning music, definitely.
    march 13th, 2005 ~ sunday
    riding the Rogue Wave again
         it's too bad I didn't make the morning trek to Manhattan today, to see Urbs, Dave and Lee off. their presence, along with all my other friendly-types, made this a weekend to remember. I certainly noted and also felt the sentiment infused in the toast Urbs made at my birthday dinner last night, and a similar interjection he made sometime around 2 am at Dana's place, when he looked around at all of us together, some 4 years after college, and said something to the effect of, "this is what I hoped and imagined our times would be like." he crystallized and vocalized the spontaneous, on-going comraderie that the group have sustained -- it's a beautiful thing. I'm glad we can get together from time to time like we've able to do the past 2 days, and just be the great group of friends we are.

         "everything is perfect" -- so go the soft-spoken, idyllic, gentle-guitar-accompanied lyrics of Perfect, a song that I discovered (and purchased) today, a song that would've fit in, well, perfectly, with the relaxed atmosphere of last night. the song's by Rogue Wave, who first strummed me into sweet submission with with their equally sublime Be Kind & Remind, last year. file both songs under "listen and make your soul feel good."
    march 12th, 2005 ~ saturday
    happy birthday to me
         yeah, I suppose I'm 26 years old as of today, or something like that. well, I'm pretty sure about the number of years I've elapsed, but not that I necessarily feel that age. every year, for the past coupla years after college, the importance of the integer has registered less and less. though 25 had a nice ring to it, if anything I liked turning that age. it was a very representative number, I felt, and I enjoyed being at the midpoint between my 20s and 30s. which I still basically am, a few hours into being 26 now, yet I'm mostly pretty whatever about the number itself. at least I can milk a nice little birthday celebration out of it, tonight. I made dinner reservations for a group of us (me, Mike, Urbs, Dave, Jon, Dana, Lee, Margalit and Nate) at Walker's, in TriBeCa. think we'll try and go out for drinks afterwards, in the area or elsewhere. wherever we wind up, it's bound to be a night of many hilarious consequences. just planning it this afternoon was amusing in and of itself, with a musical moment on the phone with Dana that I'll have to properly transcribe later. so enjoyment-wise, it's all uphill from here, tonight.

         and as for Mike and Alex's engagement party last night, it was chockful of good times and great moments, which I'll have to individualize later. perhaps post-weekend, cuz between my birthday dinner and Sunday, there's still much fun to be had this weekend.
    march 11th, 2005 ~ friday
    for her, them, and me, celebrations aplenty
         what a day it's been, and what a night it'll be.

         first, this afternoon at work we feted a co-worker who's been recently spotlighted and awarded for her tireless, consummate commitment to the students whose lives she's touched and enriched through the years. the celebration was a suprise one: we all yelled "congratulations!" when she walked through the door. she was certainly taken aback, and between the cake, the many kind words of appreciation and commendation, and the hugs from the kids, I could tell how much the moment meant to her, and how good it made her feel.

         and, tonight, tonight. we're merely hours away from the super-anticipated engagement party that fiancÚs Mike and Alex are throwing at the Fat Black Pussycat. color me excited. according to the Evite, a good 60 people will be attending the occasion, including folks like Urbs, Dave, Jon, and Lee (Lee!) from neighborly New Englandy states. Mike's renting a room at the Cat from 10:30 to 4 am, so tonight will actually extend into the wee hours of my 26th birthday, on Saturday. so I'll get to celebrate another year of life with many of my favorite people on the planet. to paraphrase the Kaiser Chiefs, I predict a riot of fun.
    march 10th, 2005 ~ thursday
    Martin No-sez-he
         well, I've got 2 passes for a free screening of Martin Scorsese's penultimate movie, Gangs Of New York, tonight (it's part of a March Fan Favorites thing that Loews is doing, as they commemorate Irish culture in cinema this month). I haven't seen G.O.N.Y., so I was almost ready to go see it by my loneself, as no one among the small group of people I emailed could make it out. but earlier in the day I decided to skip the flick, stay in, and save up my energy for tomorrow night...
    march 9th, 2005 ~ wednesday
    Start Me Up
         after having watched the video for it at The Fat Black Pussycat last week, I decided that Start Me Up, by the Rolling Stones, is a song I should definitely have in my collection. so this morning, pre-work, I bought it offa Itunes, and by the time I was walking to the train station, Mick was pleading his classic case to me.

         and I'm still reeling from VHS or Beta's recent live heavenly onslaught.
    march 8th, 2005 ~ tuesday
    Craig's Lust, or, VHS or Beta, the third time around
         VHS or Beta just completely floored me again, last night at the Bowery Ballroom. live, on stage, Craig Pfunder and his boys embodied the word incredible -- they had me, and a wave of other people, in the throes of aural ecstasy. I've seen them twice already, and like fine wine, those guys just keep on getting better and better as time passes.

         the icing on the cake last night was that I finally saw VoB with a group of people, as it's been my desire for months upon months to show the band's utter sonic genius to my friends, en masse (my last 2 times seeing the band was with George and Todd, respectively). last night it was me, Jess, Odie, and James...

         ...more about the night, to come.
    march 7th, 2005 ~ monday
    VHS or Beta, tonight!!!
         this very night, at the Bowery Ballroom, I shall be re-worshipping at the guitar-strewn altar of VHS or Beta. opening acts Ambulance LTD and Robbers On High Street will go on before my beloved Kentuckian band. oh, as I just wrote last night in an email, I'm so excited, and I just can't hide it.
    march 6th, 2005 ~ sunday
    helping my droogs, this very horrorshow weekend
         yesterday was quite a day. I woke up at 6 am, since I wanted to get uptown to Mike's new place a little after 8 (factor in the usual hour-long Brooklyn-to-Manhattan train voyage). Mike rented a van and I accompanied him up to Westport, Connecticut, to get a couch from Alex's house there. with what seemed like less then a horizontal inch of clearance we were somehow able to move it through the doorway, across a snow-covered front yard that we shoveled a path through, and into the van, in the morning. 2 butterfly chairs were also taken from Alex's house. then we drove to Queens, retrieved and Tetrissed a table and 4 chairs into the van as well. when we got back to Manhattan in the afternoon, the real fun began: hauling the various furniture items up to Mike's 2nd floor apartment. that couch was a killer -- I had to take numerous breaks as Mike and I lugged, pushed, twisted and turned up the staircases. in addition to my muscle tissues going comatose every few minutes, a stairpost nicked my hand during the vertical couch transport, leaving a nice, bloody little scratch. my minor version of a battle wound.

         at 4 pm, post-moving, I hopped the train back to Brooklyn, got home at 5, freshened up a bit, was back out the door a bit after 6, and returned to Mike's by 7:30. I was invited over for dinner, which was actually a meal for five, since Mike's visiting parents were there too. between dinner (a savory, over-night marinated brisquet, and equally delicious mashed potatoes) and the living room/dining room conversations (Salvador Dali, Pennsylvanian hunters and student-criminals were amongst our amusing topics of discussion), I had a very welcome and enjoyable evening. it was an excellent, relaxing end to a day of much physical exertion -- spent and sated, I happily snoozed much of the train ride back home.

         as for today, I finished reading The Da Vinci Code. a good read, rather engaging at times. I'll admit that a number of pager-turner, what's-gonna-happen-next moments had me going for a bit. it was fun to decipher a code or two before the main characters. and now I await the movie adaption, which may see Tom Hanks portraying Langdon. and as for my next read, it's gonna be one of my all-time faves, A Clockwork Orange, which I re-bought a few days ago. tonight I'll reacquint myself with the misdoings and self-invented language of Alex and his droogs. and after A Clockwork Orange I'll finally read a book that I also bought the same day this week, one that's been on my "still haven't but gotta read" list for too long: 1984. following my religiously-themed recent readings, I guess I'm moving into a dystopian phase now.

         and also, a little over a hour ago, as I was writing this entry, Zack called me. we chatted for a good 50 minutes about all things iPod, specifically the one he's going to buy tomorrow. which is incredible news, news that truly excites me. Zack asked which model should he get, so I, the person Zack calls his "tech guru," advised his to go the way of the highest end pod, the 15,000 song-holding 60 gig version. $100 extra bucks'll get ya twice the capacity of the 30 gig model, I reasoned, I think it's worth it. so did he. so Friday, at Mike and Alex's engagement party, I'll get to see Zack, who I haven't seen inna month, and his shiny new iToy.
    march 5th, 2005 ~ saturday
    more shlepping with Mike, this time across state lines
         today I'm Connecticut-bound, to help Mike transport some furniture between there and his new apartment. there will also be a voyage in Queens, to attain some table and chair furnishings, he says.

         and tonight we may meet up with Jess for a birthday party for friends of hers, near her apartment.

         also, I forgot to mention in yesterday's entry that Mike and I had a nice time over at The Fat Black Pussycat, Thursday night (sans George, who was doing some high-school reunioning elsewhere). beforehand we sated our hunger pangs at a nearby pizza joint, where we both had to acquiesce to lasagna-topped slices that were just too large to finish. midhand, at the Cat, I managed 2 victories at darts, by getting my bullseyes early on, then throwing wildly and erratically as usual, then finishing with a come-from-behind win. the second game ended when, after I had closed all my numbers, I asked Mike what do I need to do now, to win; he replied, hit 15 three times before he does. and on my very next turn I did so. for once, and perhaps never again, my aim was true.
    march 4th, 2005 ~ friday
    come hobbit-walk with me
         after a pretty nice half-day of work this morning I A-then-L trained it over to Union Square, and picked up 4 movies (that many in one day is some sorta record for me) at the Virgin Megastore. they have a respectable "2 for $25" sale going on, which I happily fell victim to. I picked up The Exorcist (the version with added footage like the super-creepy "spider-walk" staircase sequence, and those split-second, near-subliminal scary faces that I remember being so horrifying cool); The Iron Giant (for the youngins, and my inner youngin); and both Lord of the Rings - The Two Towers, and The Return Of The King. for far too long I've lived with the unspeakable sin of not having seen the last installment of the Rings trilogy, so tonight that tragedy shall be undone. and I'm gonna rewatch the Two Towers first, before King, for a combined 6 hours of movie-watching this evening. a good quarter of my day devoted to DVD watching -- I'll buy that for a dollar. or $25, as it were.
    march 3rd, 2005 ~ thursday
    Diamond Nights
         the song of the moment is definitely Destination Diamonds, by Diamond Nights. it rocks, it rolls. stripped-down electric pleasure, by way of the guitar. I originally downloaded the track on Sunday from their site, and I've been giving it repeat listens each day for the past coupla days. it's too bad that their next show is on the 11th, the same night as Mike and Alex's engagement party (and the day before my birthday). otherwise I'd go catch the sonic goodness of Diamond Nights live.
    march 2nd, 2005 ~ wednesday
    Jesus Talks
         I spent the better part of an hour engaged in a stimulating and great conversation on church and religion today, at work this afternoon, just after dismissal. it was a grounded, personal, and dare I say intellectual chat, during which I was able to reference both of the books I'm current reading, one on Kabbalah, and the other, The Da Vinci Code. references aside, today was a rare and appreciated opportunity to discuss the role of spirituality, how it grounds life, how we have to grapple with it, and ultimately know it and possess it on our own terms. deep thoughts, I know, but ones ever present in the recesses of my mind.
    march 1st, 2005 ~ tuesday
    dodging the (legal) bullet, and not-so-lousy Smarch weather, in my case
         lady luck was truly on my side as I kicked off my birth month today. I reported in for jury duty this morning, but by the end of afternoon I wasn't chosen as an actual juror. that's it. I'm done. I'll be missing no work, not even today because it's a snow day and school was cancelled. the timing is incredible. I'm pretty pleased. as for the actual hours I served in court, they provided me an interesting, if brief, look into our legal system. I've never had any one-on-one interactions with lawyers until today, so that was new and refreshingly different. what wasn't refreshing at all was the time I had to wait for my name and the names of 14 other potential jurors to finally be called, so they we could be interviewed by the lawyers. that happened sometime between 11 or 12 o'clock. from 8:45 am, when I arrived at the courthouse in Brooklyn, til then, I was mostly bored outta my mind. I listened to my iPod for a bit, and came as close to napping with my eyes open as possible during the rest of the endless waiting period. but I guess I shouldn't complain, considering that this is the way the process works, for now, and that I lucked out, only having to serve a single day. again, with no work missed. and I'm free from possible juror selection for the next 6 years, which is not too shabby. so jury duty, I hardly knew ye.

    the February 2005 entries can be found here

    the January 2005 entries can be found here

    the December 2004 entries can be found here

    the November 2004 entries can be found here

    october 31st, 2004 ~ sunday
    years in the making
         wow. what a weekend thus far. incredible. the people I've seen, mostly Collegiate high school types, whom I haven't seen in ages... good times though. I'll do a better synopsis of this tomorrow soon, as I'm off to another All Hallow's Eve-themed party, this time on the Upper East Side (last night, Saturday, we were situated in Tribeca, and what a trip that was, in a few ways...).

         below's an IM of me musing with my cousin, on my custom indecision for the night's Halloween party:

    me: ...though, I'm drawing a blank. whatevs, I'll just come as whatever
    him: Dont you got work tomorrow
    me: ah, a big nope to that
    him: why?
    him: WHY?
    me: All Saints Day
    him: WHAT!!!!!!!!!
    me: wanna take the day off too?
    me: tell your school, I'm sure they'd understand
    him: I wish
    him: Yeah [right]
    me: religious expression and all
    him: go ahead
    me: and tell them for you?
    him: no
    ...

    me: well, I wonder when I'm gonna start getting ready
    me: actually sometime around now'd be good
    him: what are you gonna be
    him: ?
    me: I'm still not inspired. I wish I could be your favorite decade, but I'd do better representing the 90s
    me: a shame, right?
    him: yeah
    him: What do you have?
    me: plus I dont wanna steal your idea. your concept
    him: Come as looking glass
    me: what do I have? not much
    him: you can turn around
    me: huh, good one
    me: with a note on my back
    him: yup
    him: lw
    me: well, I should bounce and not put together this non-costume of mine
    him: yeah
    him: ok
    him: peace
    me: ya, ch-ch-check you out later. ciao
    him: peace
    him: out
    me: lates

    [post-party update]: I did manage to put together what vaguely resembled a costume, maybe. I was hit, or maybe just nudged, by a bolt of semi-inspiration, I
    october 30th, 2004 ~ saturday
    quote of the (previous) day
         "are you Prince?"

    -- some guy looking for a hand-out, to me, noting my attire, Friday night in Midtown.
    october 29th, 2004 ~ friday
    a free flick with the Rog
    on Friday, October 29th, 2004, Roger Nembhard wrote:

    allo allo. so I scored another pair of free tickets to a movie (recent free flicks included Silver City, and uh, Pauly Shore Is Dead. I actually saw only the former, not the latter).

    this time the free movie is Finding Neverland, with Johnny Depp and that Winslet lady. Depp's playing J.M. Barrie, Piotr Pan's creator.

    it's all going down next Wednesday, Nov. 3rd, post-Election Day, at 7:30 pm, at the 890 Broadway Lews Cineplex 570 Second Ave Loews Kips Bay Theatre.

    to the first person to email me, goes the other ticket, and my semi-effervescent company, for a few hours. fellow-movie-co-attender-to-be, be prepared to arrive at least an hour early, as seating space is limited, and we'll be better off line-wise if we arrive accordingly.

    cheers!

    -- Rog
    october 28th, 2004 ~ thursday
    two for one
    From: Sherwyn Fullington <info@evite.com>
    Reply-To: Sherwyn Fullington
    Sent: Thursday, October 28, 2004 11:55 AM
    To: Roger Nembhard
    Subject: Evite: Reminder for Pre-Halloween Birthday Bash

    Hi Roger Nembhard,

    We want to remind you that Pre-Halloween Birthday Bash is coming up on Fri. Oct. 29.

    Your current reply is Yes.

    View the invite for directions, maps, event info or to change your RSVP.

    ...

    Enjoy!

    The Evite Team

    and

    From: Dan Rohtbart <info@evite.com>
    Reply-To: Dan Rohtbart
    Sent: Thursday, October 28, 2004 12:32 PM
    To: Roger Nembhard
    Subject: Evite: Reminder for Drinks

    Hi Roger Nembhard,

    We want to remind you that Drinks is coming up on Fri. Oct. 29.

    Your current reply is Yes.

    View the invite for directions, maps, event info or to change your RSVP.

    ...

    Enjoy!

    The Evite Team
    october 27th, 2004 ~ wednesday
    work is the curse of the drinking classes
         no [revival of] Wednesday night drinks with the guys tonight, alas, there's errands and work afoot.

         one of today's saving graces was stumbling across a life-defining quote. one found in, of all places, a recently life-sustaining periodical... yes, I'm talking about AM New York. say what you will of the source, the quote itself, from yesterday's edition, holds water -- it's one that makes sense of this existence of mine, and complements it. it's by Anais Nin, and I've placed it at the top of this page.
    october 26th, 2004 ~ tuesday
    wot? bloody funny, mate
         I haven't yet said how friggin hilarious Shaun Of The Dead was, which me and Mike saw on Friday. we both suffered from respective fits of laughter during the movie. off-the-wall great. I personally can't remember when I've laughed so hard in a movie theatre. a coupla of the scenes that killed us was when Shaun and his mate Ed first encountered the zombies in and outside their home, and later on when they and their surviving friends masquaraded, not quite so convincingly, as zombies, to try and make their way through a crowd of the undead. all in all it was a thoroughly satisfying flick, and one that reminds me that the British have never let me down in the comedy arena. John Cleese and Monty Python, Fawlty Towers, Rowan Atkinson, and lately Ali G -- my life has been made better for them.
    october 25th, 2004 ~ monday
    the day thus far
         I was about the get my lunch on in one of the parks across the street from school, when who should walk by by Kim. I holla'd and she responded, and we chatted for a few.... very cool, bumping into her.

         not quite exciting was seeing some random guy who looked like a cross between Brad Pitt and Russell Crowe. an interesting mix, not ugly nor extremely handsome, but manageable.

         both events are, dare I say it, blog-worthy. I also got Evited to a go-away birthday party for a fellow high-school compatriate, and it's 300 bucks a head for a room package up in the Catskills (it's be a weekend focusing on skiing and whatnot, that's also part of the package I guess). hmmm. that a spicy meata-ball-ah, still. quite some damage.
    october 24th, 2004 ~ sunday
    lively echoes
        the younger, oft-quoted cousin didn't come over this weekend, but an older one, with his son in tow, did. much quality time was spent with him. our conversation got pretty deep; he brought up some existential, meaning-of-life thoughts that I had to really mull over.

        back to the other younger cousin. who is, incidentally, the only family that I think knows about this website. I was just on the phone with him (we've been chatting off and on for hours this weekend, as has become the custom, when I'm home) and I offered him the chance to guest-write a bit. he declined, but he urged me to include some of our usual tech-talk in my writing. specifically, how we'll be drawing the other into our respective gaming worlds. that is, he'll be making sure that I see plenty of Metroid Prime 2: Echoes when he gets it (his existence is intimately tied to that game), and I'll somehow introduce him to the upcoming Half-life 2 (had he come I could've done so yesterday or today, as I already have a 3.12GB, kinda-running demo of it). fun fun impending fun.
    october 23rd, 2004 ~ saturday
    He's the potter, and we are the clay
         the straight and narrow, man, the straight and narrow.
    october 22nd, 2004 ~ friday
    no homocides
         ..."No homicides were reported in New York City during Game 7, the police said."

         yeah, unlike up in Boston, where, during the celebrations and rioting, the police there managed to accidentally kill a female student with apparently "non-lethal" weaponry.
    october 21st, 2004 ~ thursday
    movie tomorrow
         well, the weekend's'almost here. I do believe there's a movie in my Friday future, with Mike.
    october 20th, 2004 ~ wednesday
    start spreading the news...
         saw a little history being made.
    october 19th, 2004 ~ tuesday
    fortune donut
         in a landslide victory (12 ballots to 3), donuts won the popular vote in the election held by my constituency of my classroom. those hole-y confections beat out the other candidate, cookies, as the students' (plus a few adults, like myself) favorite treat. yes, it was a outcome that would make Homer Simpson proud. what implications our election will have on the general presidential one, that remains to be seen. all I can say is, immediately following the election, a group calling itself the Cookie-Lovers For Truth sprung up, stating donuts' lack of service in the line of deliciousness. I'm keeping my eye on them.

         hey, someone in Rockville, Maryland's been visiting my site recently. hmmm. izzat you, Angy/Dave? don't know who else it could be. holla if it be you, holla regardless.
    october 18th, 2004 ~ monday
    No Cabaret!
         yup, as the last two entries alluded to, later on Saturday I threw down a little cash and bought my first iTunes song. No Cabaret!, the aforementioned VHS or Beta song/Song Of The Moment, was what I got. the whole process of getting it was pretty painless, and highly recommended for the 2 other humans on Earth not already getting tracks straight from Apple. the AAC encoding sped of the DLing, and I guess I appreciate the similar-quality-at-a-smaller-size thing that AAC has going on. but as the picture below [will indicate], I still wanted a regular, universal (read: non-DRM'ed) version of it. so through a certain program called Hymn, I was able to, ahem, make a copy, minus the protection. go me, though it wasn't particularly hard to do.

         but that ain't all. after work, I went out and actually BOUGHT the whole album, the actual factual disc, as I planned on doing over the weekend. I'm glad I did. I only saved 2 dollars over iTunes's price, but that's really beside the point. the point is, I'm in musical heaven right now, as I've been rambling about for the past few days. definitely burning some copies of this disc to share, definitely letting some of its tracks find their way on to my next mix CDs. bliss. and now with the whole version of Nightwaves in my possession (I had only the memory of the show's version, plus a minute-long snippet prior to tonight) I gotta restate how effin' stellar that song is is -- I just hit the play button again. unless another band comes along to usurp them, sonically the rest of my 2004 belongs to the Betas.
    october 16th, 2004 ~ saturday
    i heart VHS or Beta
         VHS or Beta, they're still blowing me away, a good 2 days after catching them live. my new favorite band, without a doubt. in retrospect, they definitely were the linchpin of the Thursday's Bowery Ballroom show, for me. the Concretes, the actual headliner of the show, played the beautiful, mostly delicate music I expected from them, having their album and all. aside from a cover of the Rolling Stones' Miss You (and the flowers that the lead singer threw into the crowd), I was pleased but not so surprised by their gig. but VHS or Beta, well...

         ...VHS or Beta I knew by name only, I had no preconceived notions of them, I had read or heard nothing about them. no reviews, no critiques, no nothing. whether or not that made them more utterly amazing for me, I don't know, I just know that they were (utterly ammazing). his exact wording escapes me now, but in the middle of the Betas' set & afterwards again, George intelligibly noted how well the band's differing guitars' sounds melded together. my own inability to stand still, my need to sway and move in some way, that was how I expressed my agreement.

         so now that I'm on XP (thank you, thank you), with iTunes installed as of today (George reminded to get the i-app as we talked tech, music, ladies and politics before and between bands that night), naturally I'm now inclined to throw a dollar or two Apple's way, and get another VHS or Beta song for the old Pod and me. I already made me a very respectable mp3 of the title track of their brand-new,-just-released-on-September-21st sophomore album, Night On Fire -- I recorded a real-time wav of a full streaming Real version of that song, a freebie from Astralwerks, their new label. I did that minutes before leaving for work, Friday morning. maybe Night On Fire was what helped me get through the day, cuz I literally got only 3 hours of sleep beforehand, having gotten home at 2 am. but it was totally worth it. I put that song on repeat for the whole train trip home. but with some weekend time on my hands now, I've found out the names of the other Beta songs I heard live the other night. the studio versions of Nightwaves and No Cabaret! are just as cool as their live counterparts -- I'm hooked, I'm gonna go buy the whole album, tomorrow. yes, another fleeting foray into the world of actually buying music. but my nouveau infatuation warrants it, it'd be nice to have something of a tangible, possibly permanent record of the VHS or Beta songs that're giving me so much joy right now. hell, I'll even pay for a highly encoded AAC of one of those 2 aforementioned tracks, to whet my pre-album appetite. this is, after the gratis duo of last-album songs that I've already attained (one came in seconds ago). ok, time to log off of 98 where I've been doing my typing, and get onto the XP partition, where iTunes lives. in some time I'll be 99 cents poorer, but more VHS or Beta richer.
    october 15th, 2004 ~ friday
    Sondre and VHS Or Beta
    Subject: Sondre and VHS Or Beta

    your boy Sondre, Jess, he is a winner. George and I partook of his performance last night, as an opener for The Concretes. Mike inquired about the show, and George wrote back, "[the] show was great. some very cool stuff in the opening acts. and some sox fans in the downstairs "bah" too."

    maybe 2 thirds of Sondre's set was solo, then for the remainder it was him, backed up by Golden Republic. he and they are co-touring together. last night they really complemented one another, George and I agreed.

    right after Lerche and company was this effing INCREDIBLE band named VHS Or Beta. it's hard for me to describe how awesome they are. they defintely converted me into a fan last night, Jess. they do this multitextured dance rock thing, a few of their songs were wordless noise grooves that got me and many others moving. man, I loved it. you'd never know they were actually from Kentucky (???) -- they need to move here, today, Jess, and play at least monthly gigs. I believe they're on tour, and are playing Maxwell's tonight. if I had my crap together, or knew how awesome they were beforehand, I'd hit up that show too. yes, they were that good/great.

    well, the only other set gig in my future is a free one that Go To Town are doing, [1 day] after the election. it's been a moment since my last Jess gig, we should take advantage of that or another upcoming show... oh, and how were your online radio DJs? I'm sure that was fun fun fun.

    -- Rog

    PS. oh, one of the VHSers had some humorously complimentary words for Sondre, last night. he said, "I'm not into guys, but that Sondre is a good-looking guy. sorta like you know Prince was a good-looking guy, even if you're not into guys."... later on same VHSer instructed the crowd to, quote, "dance, you fuckheads."
    october 14th, 2004 ~ thursday
    Bowery Ballroom show tonight
    From: <info@ticketweb.com>
    Reply-To: info@ticketweb.com
    Sent: Wednesday, September 29, 2004 9:56 PM
    To: rnembhard@hotmail.com
    Subject: Order Confirmation

    Event: The Concretes
    plus VHS or Beta / Sondre Lerche / The Golden Republic / Inouk
    Venue: Bowery Ballroom
    6 Delancey Street
    New York, NY 10002

    Seating: GENERAL ADMISSION
    Time: Thursday, October 14 7:00 PM (6:00 PM doors)
    october 13th, 2004 ~ wednesday
    yes!


         I'm going to see The Concretes tomorrow. and that's equally "yes!"-worthy.
    october 12th, 2004 ~ tuesday
    re-Evited and it feels so good...
         I was listening to NPR yesterday or Sunday, and a writer being interviewed made the highly charged claim that there is no relationship between writing and talking, if I heard her correctly. I've butted heads with that concept, from time to time (like earlier this year). we certainly can compose words differently during the acts of speaking and writing. but strangely, I'm possibly seeing those two abilities of mine drawing closer, as of late, when I'm careful enough with my words. which, I'm not, alot of the time. still, the argument's a fascinating one.

         today I got an Evite from Sherwyn, inviting me to his upcoming pre-Halloween, birthday party. I haven't seen him in, wot, a year? yeah, it's been a while and a half, but I look forward to seeing him, et al.
    october 11th, 2004 ~ monday
    we are standing on the edge
         man, I think it took the better part of today to recover from the fits of laughter, and several hours of conversation that I enjoyed on Sunday. following the very agreeable Saturday night in downtown Manhattan, between Sweet And Vicious and Room 18. and I do have an actual Saturday entry, I haven't missed a beat -- I just need to cut and edit it, cuz as a whole it's 2 to 3 pages long. more of a co-entry, but that'll be clearer when I throw it in here.
    october 9th, 2004 ~ saturday
    sweet and vicious
         three day weekend -- thank you, Cristoforo Columbo (or Cristobal Colon). you may not have actually discovered the Americas, and you died without actually making it to the Indies, but hey, you're helping me sleep in on a Monday. cheers.

         gonna have to hit up the old Mapquest soon and find out how to get to Sweet And Vicious, where Amy S.'s birthday party is taking place. ain't never been there before, I wonder if it'll live up to it's name. at any rate, it's the perfect excuse to listen to a Lou Reed song by a third of the same name ("Vicious," though I'm inclined to think there might actually be a bar or club called "And" out there.) well, better get ready to go and be social, after what's been a slow, rare, non-going-out week. after all, my cousin expects there to be a beer in my hand sometime soon, and I can't disappoint him. so here's to a viciously sweet night.
    october 8th, 2004 ~ friday
    welcome?
    october 7th, 2004 ~ thursday
    eight and fifteen
         thank God it's almost tomorrow. cuz today was kinda a middling day, amidst a week that's felt ever so slightly off. perhaps it's my current estrangement from the 8 hours and 15 minutes of sleep I (and every adult) should be getting nightly, says some study. and in my waking hours, my afternoon/evening sched's been somewhat askew too, but it's of my own doing, so I can't complain too much.

         last night I sat out a chance to socialize with Mike et al, who presumably caught his Red Sox game at the Riviera Cafe (which is 3 or so minutes from my job, and could've been conveniently close, had I not gone home and succumbed to lameness, which I did). then today I all but dropped some possible weekend plans (though I still see myself going to Amy S's party, so I'm not at a loss for activity). and I also scored a majorly great breakthrough on my latest project -- perhaps by the weekend I'll have the results that I want. we'll see.

         coming home from work tonight, I had an intermittently curious time on the train, thanks to my choice of reading, a passenger sitting next to me, and some self-imposed interplay between the two. and the other night I had a dream that featured a wicked music cameo, but I'll have to leave the write-up of that and the train thing til tomorrow or the weekend, cuz I'm feeling well knackered right about now.
    october 6th, 2004 ~ wednesday
    is it scarf weather already? awesome.
         so I was walking to the Christopher Street 2 station, post-work, and gazing about, it seemed like a good number of the lovely ladies of the Greenwich village area all decided to break out their scarves today, en masse. perhaps the scarf-to-neck ratio is just especially high around there, which is not to deny increased pockets of scarfdom else too. anyhoo, I just noticed the pseudo-phenomenon this evening. and it pleased the eye, is all.
    october 5th, 2004 ~ tuesday
    kids say the darndest things (and why they don't vote)
    Student A: Sometimes I go into [the voting booth] with [my mom].
    Student B: It is scary?
    Student A: Yes.
    october 4th, 2004 ~ monday
    Quality Services Delivery Task Force
         following our in service/staff development today (in lieu of a regular school day), I attended the first meeting of the Quality Services Delivery Task Force commitee that I was asked to join. it went well. more about it in the future.
    october 3rd, 2004 ~ sunday
    lw
    me: I'm trying to remember for my website -- what were some of the better things we discussed today?
    me: Paris Hilton being in Metroid Hunters, or was it Prime 2?
    my cousin: Prime 2
    me: ok. what else? Jay-Z's tour through the Czech republic... the non-necessity and disgustingness of food...
    him: lw
    me: what am I leaving out?
    him: ofcoures me telling to to buy something and you dont
    me: yes, thats always a staple of our convo's... alcohol too, dont forget that
    him: oh yeah, How could I
    me: ...forget? I dunno

    ...

    him: you go ever week dont you
    me: by the way, your hit finally appeared
    me: to see a show? yeah, if I can help it
    him: oh
    him: lw
    me: saw 2 shows, one on Thursday, one Tuesday
    me: 2 point something gigs
    him: gonna see an Eminem show if it comes by?
    me: tickets would be pricey, though, for him
    him: how much?
    me: I'm looking to pay 20 bucks per show, at most, if I can help it
    me: 40, 50 bucs, and it better be a world-ending type show
    me: not that I've paid that much yet
    him: lw
    him: world-ending
    him: ?
    me: but I've spent far more in total, if you add up all the shows I've seen
    me: or their value
    him: on the final song the world blows up
    me: world-ending = knock you outta your socks-good
    me: but the earth-exploding thing would be nice, too
    me: and just get the apocalypse over with, already
    him: NO
    me: enough wasting time
    him: lw

    lw = laughworthy (coined by my cousin, unless it actually exists)
    october 2nd, 2004 ~ saturday
    putting the "fun" back in function
         another timely entry, albeit one very disconnected from my last bit of writing. there is a whole other facet to this journal's return, that I have yet to get to, and hopefully soon I will. meantime, a short, tech-minded update (cuz if I don't write about these things now, I may soon forget that I accomplished what I did, and when I did)...

         I had a fruitful Saturday afternoon of actually-not-so-lazy computing, this 2nd day of October (Rocktober? no, not yet...). as luck would have it, I tackled and conquered a coupla truly annoying Windows bugs that have been plaguing me for a year, if not longer. perhaps they all generally stemmed from the fact that I, horror of horrors, am still using Windows 98. for someone who's the polar opposite of a Luddite, I prah'lly can do better, yet I make the most out of a dire situation, and then some. like today.

         problem number was that my Program Files folder always opened up when I started my PC. I once licked this problem by moving or uninstalling some program, but this annoyance re-reared its ugly head, and for the life of me, I couldn't discover what new problem was messing things up, this time. I went Googling for an answer again, and once more I was steered to the msconfig's startup settings. slowly but surely I unchecked a few unnecessaries, and eventually emerged victorious, with no Program Folder popping up when I boot up. yay. that folder, when it unwantingly appeared, definitely marred the aesthetic and calm of my desktop, if it possesses those things. now, finalmente, I now there isn't something strange and erroneous going on with my startup process.

         another longtime, seriously bothersome dilemma I had through today was that I couldn't open Word documents by directly double-clicking them. no, I was forced to right-click and open them via a Word link I'd added to the context menu. this was the only obstacle in an otherwise good Word experience (if you wanna call using Word 97 "good"). I might add that I got my version of Word, and the entire Office 97 suite, to work on this machine without actually installing it, not from a CD anyway. it wouldn't even be on this machine, oif not for a lot of past Macguyvering, but that's another story for another time. back to this story's time, and its simple ending. again I searched my way into Microsoft support/Knowledge base thing, and I was semi-beside myself when I found the solution to my Word problem there. had to do with long file name support, and a missing quotation mark from the File Type menu minutia. should I thank Bill, some IT flunkie at Redmond, or the foreign server housing my solution? I guess they can share the copious wealth of my gratitude.

         with those problems vanquished, my PC and I breathed a collective sigh of relief. but without resting on my laurels I found a few more ways to improve my computing experience. both iPod-related. I got my iPod's Explorer icon to resemble it, or be any icon I choose, instead of the dreary, static harddrive icon it had until now. again, that helps out with my aesthetic proclivities. and it draws my Windows 98 machine one superficial step closer to its XP brethen, for whom such icon support might be native, possibly. and my other accomplishment, definitely the most far-reaching, practical and usable one, is that I can hook up my Pod to this computer via USB. which is something the Pod ain't naturally capable of -- Apple definitely doesn't want their beautiful player to work with my old software. that's why neither they nor Microsoft designed any Windows 98 USB drivers for the iPod. thankfully some random but generous person made such a driver, and shared it with the world. today I finally found it, and it works perfectly. now all sorts of fun can begin, and my various future projects will now have the gigabytes of space they may need.

         alright, enough basking, better upload this tech dirge, and get my mind on something else.
    october 1st, 2004 ~ friday
    a work in blogress ???
         hmmm. I can start this 2 ways. way one:

         "if an online journal falls in the woods, does it make a sound? I don't know about that, but I do know that I'm "back," and once again all up in the wunderbar world of what's colloquially known as blogging, after an extended hiatus of, oh, a coupla years..."

         way deux:

         "well. I guess I'm back, back up to my old online journal hijinx, and low-jinx, again. it's been, what, 2 plus years since my last entry? yeah, I've/we've traveled around the sun nigh-on 3 times since I last officially wrote something for one of my websites..."

         [continuing with the thoughts from way 2, if only cuz they're the last ones in my head]

         ...so it goes. everything in due time, right? I guess now's as good a time as any to wade back into the digital waters. 'specially since I have me a thing or two to actually say, some of a sudden (not "all of a sudden," cuz things have been noteworthy for a bit of time now. keeping in mind that my ascription (is that a word?) of noteworthiness of completely subjective to my own POV). ah. looks like my amazing powers of rambling have not failed me at this hour, so I can definitely sally forth with the rest of this entry.

         time to get all semi-introspective and whatnot. so tell me, and them, self, what have you been up to? well a healthy portion of my non-work time has been dedicated to tapping into the alternative energy source that is live music. seeing live acts, gigs, shows has quickly become a new passion in my life. in the past 5 months I've caught some 35 bands/musicians en vivo. all here in the city. I guess that averages to one point something bands a week, if I was to get all pseudo-statistical. though the music I've experienced has largely been in the rock vein, my gig list runs the gamut. new-to-the-game, fresh-faced local bands who you can't find on your FM dial just yet... some media darlings doin' the major label thing, with fans numbering in the thousands or millions, surely... one thing that does unite them, though, is the common age bracket I share with them. I'd say most of these singers and performers I've seen have gotta be my age, or a few years plus or minus it. alotta twenty-somethings rocking out, fer sher.

         like The Hong Kong, current super-faves of mine who I saw, FINALLY!, last night. I just learned that while the Hong Kong currently call my home borough of Brooklyn home as well, none of them are actually from here, this city or state. whatev's, I love 'em to death, and having them come to life in front of me last night was right on, a satisfyingly loud and beautiful time. it was great. I've had their [only] album, an 8 track EP called Rock The Faces for some months now. they played only 3 songs from that, out of their 10-or-so song set list, the rest was brand spanking new to me. which was fine and dandy; their CD's from 2003 anyways, I was expecting, and hoping for, new songs anyhow. and all the new stuff was enjoyable; two tracks I think fairly blew my mind with coolness. I'm feenin' for their next release, and even though there's nary a word or piece of audio of post-Rock the Faces media online, I know what songs to look out for. thanks to the amazing power of human memory, which allowed me to mentally jot down the set list laying on the stage a few feet in front of us.

         by us I mean me and Mike, my fellow Hong Konger for the night, and the future (he said he like to catch them again, and I'd very much to fulfill that wish of his).

         and yeah, Mike and I were at the very front of the crowd for the HK gig -- that was hot. there was a single, verge-of-irking moment earlier into their gig, when some dude and a female mate of his slid up in front of us, very much blocking the formerly unubstructed view I once had. but between songs one of The Hong Kong, the bassist who possibly goes by the name of Ted Casterline, beseeched us to shimmy on as close to the stage as possible. we happily acquiesced, me myself immediately finding my opening to establish a kingly front row posish for me and Mike. yes, it was good. nothing but a few feet of air separating us from the band, no tall people, no anyone in front of me. again, pure hotness.

         oh, way before the band even went on, I had a cool moment related to them. so I get to the Delancey, the venue that I should've mentioned earlier. I pay the guy at the door, then turn towards to the bar area. but before I even see the actual bar, before I even take in the surroundings, I make eye contact with someone... the lead singer of the Hong Kong, Catherine Culpepper. she obviously didn't know me from Adam, but having seen enough pix of her face, I instantly knew it was her. um, that was pretty effing cool, yeah, to be, by complete happenstance and dumb luck, "welcomed" by the woman who given me so much sonic joy of the past few months, where she knew it or not. our glances lasted a second at most, but the import on my end, you know, is lasting way longer.

         then I turned leftward and trod to the bar, which was a clear sign for the barkeeptress to ask if I wanted something. I ponied up for the night's special, which was also the sponsor of the night's music, Rheingold. I sucked it down as I threw only a few more glances in Miss Culpepper's general direction, and during the last 2 and a half songs of the preceding band, Like Yesterday (who, last night at least, were comprised of a singer with a tattooed wrist, and an accompanying acoustic guitarist). they were nice, dispensing some medium-wattage rock, and by that I mean it wasn't shake-the-chandeliers stuff like The Hong Kong delved into, but more or less an emotive, seated-rock-cuz-they-were-both-sitting, performance. they left it to the HK to turn up the energy, and the decibals (Mike told me to talk into what was now his "good ear," following the gig). I've heard louder, and I was too much in heaven, enjoying the sirenous collision of Culpepper's voice and the electric buzz of harmony around her. much like I've seen Go To Town, The Stills, and Franz Ferdinand all twice each this year, I wanna rock to the Hong Kong again, before the oh-four is through.

         well, I've been writing off and on but mostly on, for the past 2 hours. better pause and save something (like the Kaki King show I saw on Tuesday) for the next entry. thus ends the typing for now, here comes the cuttin' and pastin' and uploading. I mean, uploadin'.

         and, it is a word. "ascription," that is. thank you, dictionary.com.
    scroll down for morescrollbar for the journal
    the giglist ~ upcoming & past shows
    M.I.A. & Diplo @ Summerstage
    aug 2005 jul 2005
    VHS or Beta // Spoon // Saul Williams
    Morningwood // Diamond Nights
    New Pornographers // Stars ~ BrooklynX
    Brazilian Girls ~ June 1st @ Bowery
    jun 2005 may 2005
    Edan @ APT ~ Tues., May 31st ~ $5
    Rilo Kiley // The Brunettes // Portastatic
    Medeski, Wood, Ribot & Wollesen
    The Hong Kong // Eugene ~ April 19th
    Sonic Youth // The Cops ~ April 11th
    apr 2005 mar 2005
    Cowboy Mouth
    VHS or Beta // Ambulance, LTD.
    Longwave // I Love You But I've
    Chosen Darkness // The Picture
    Kaiser Chiefs // Prosaics
    Feb 2005 Jan 2005
    Tsunami Benefit Party @ Vudu Lounge
    VHS or Beta // Scissor Sisters
    dec 2004 nov 2004
    Blues Explosion // Juan Pagan
    The Concretes // VHS or Beta //
    Sondre Lerche // Golden Republic
    oct 2004 sep 2004
    The Hong Kong // Like Yesterday
    Kaki King // Sarah Silverman // Pigeon Forge
    Go To Town // Franz Ferdinand //
    The Futureheads // The Delays
    Puttin' On The Ritz // Fxxxing Lion
    Go To Town // Fireworks Go Up!
    aug 2004 jul 2004
    Jaguar // Maus // Vinyl
    A Place To Bury Strangers // Autodrone
    Devo // Yeah Yeah Yeahs // stellastarr*
    Death Cab For Cutie // Blonde Redhead //

    Har Mar Superstar // The Fever //

    Constantines // The Stills // The Dan Band
    Ladysmith Black Mambazo //
    Franz Ferdinand
    jun 2004 May 2004
    The Strokes // Adam Green // Sean Lennon
    The Stills // Metric // Sea Ray
    The Magnetic Fields