Sunday, October 31, 2004

Love and Rockets

I think I successfully washed the taste of last Halloween out of my mouth over the last two nights. An interesting combination of various liquors lead to a blurry memory of hitting my bed at 4am and waking up at noon on Saturday and Sunday. Or maybe it was a bit past noon.

I'm surprised at the ravenous interest the crackheads who frequent my back alley have in fireworks.

Twenteen has entered my vocabulary as a noun (thank you Cian). As in, "how is your twenteen-year-old girlfriend doing?" ... the correct response being, "she isn't my girlfriend."

I'm not surprised, but a bit bemused by my inclination to give my phone number to girls who are far too young for me -- when I am sufficiently drunk, of course

My inability to deal with overwhelming social situations can be masked by a few shots of Yager and a couple Stellas. Explaining that to people who are trying to talk to me while I'm downing shots always comes across sounding lame and alcoholic.

Last year I wrapped myself in leather and found myself making out on the dancefloor at a party (I remember it like I was in a lame movie where they swing the camera around the main character in an attempt to approximate being visually impaired) -- I can now say that I believe the leather was constricting blood flow to my head; possibly keeping it somewhere below my waist.

Everyone who missed The Fever show: it was excellent.

Last night, I dreamt I was fighting to save the sad remains of our world after a supernatural apocalypse.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

What do I want?

What do I want?

Usually I post things that are detached -- feelings based on observations. This is more personal. This is about the trivial and the insignificant; it's about what I'm doing on Saturday night, what music I like, and the art I admire. In the end none of this matters, but it's what fills in the time while I wait for the important stuff to take place.

There is a unique subculture - an alternative subculture - based on music, art, and fashion, which has begun to realize itself over the last ten years. I still have my first mix tape which I called, "Alternative Mix #1," dated 1991. I'm not saying that was the beginning, but it was from my perspective because, before 1989, I was blind to things like the late 70's New York no-wave scene and the 80's Chicago and New York house music scenes. Tellingly, I knew about punk, and I knew about rap. I didn't know names like Arthur Baker and The Egyptian Lover and I couldn't name a punk band other than The Sex Pistols, but I knew the music, and so at that time the music was no longer rooted in alternative culture. It had been soaked into the mainstream psyche. Today, Greenday and Offspring might have a sound some would call punk, but the ethos is completely different to what it was when the sound first found itself -- rising from the streets of New York to become a mouthpiece for the disenfranchised youth of England.

Music is just part of it. The musical genres are the result of a group of people joining together to create something different. The difference shows in a style of clothes, in haircuts, and in the paraphenalia that crops up to fill the demand of the group as it expands -- zines, magazines, buttons, posters. The difference shows itself socially in clubs and bars, and through music videos and movies. There is a sense of belonging and a sense of ownership, and perhaps most importantly, you can watch all of this happen on the internet -- while people elsewhere scratch patterns into sand in their straw huts. Through your favorite websites, you can figure out exactly what you need to be to fit into alternative culture; you can be the same amongst a group of people trying to be different. Wear the uniform, like the music, and adopt the attitude. Yeah, fuck you mainstream losers.

---- (END PART 1)

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

CD x2

Like my friend Jason (my!gay!husband!), I just finished my first mix CD in years (since the days of esoteric electronic stuff to go to sleep to).

You can stream a really shitty MP3 version here:

OR you can ask me for a copy on CD which sounds nice, is in stereo, and comes with a cover and all that if I am in the mood for cutting and pasting when I burn it.

If you like it, pass this along.



Abducted while watching TV; bound and gagged and dragged out in the snow by your feet. Left in a shed in the cold until you hear the strange voices of whales calling. You freeze to death happy.


1. Abe Vigoda / Sophomore
2. The Bravery / Honest Mistake
3. I Love You But I've Chosen Darkness / When You Go Out
4. Interpol / Evil
5. Ashbury / Blood On Stone
6. Singapore Sling / Guiding Light
7. The Walkmen / They're Winning

Interlude (The Stone Roses / I'm Without Shoes)

8. The Post / A Rest
9. Controller.Controller / History
10. Vanishing / Lovesick
11. Whitey / Non-Stop
12. Sonic Youth / The Burning Spear
13. Radiohead / The National Anthem
14. Piano Magic / Saint Marie
15. On!Air!Library / Faultered Ego
16. Tree Wave / May Banners
17.__/My Bloody Valentine / Touched
18. \My Bloody Valentine / To Here Knows When


Monday, October 04, 2004

Tie Knots

Over the last almost-thirty years, I've dealt with my share of bad relationships -- both platonic and otherwise. I've used, and been used; I've lied and I've been lied to; I've loved and lost. After going through the wringer the last time, I promised myself I'd do my best to start learning and stop repeating.

After losing a good friend to bad habits and poor choice of company, no matter what I tried to do to help - advice, money, emotional consolation - I came to the conclusion that my energy was better spent elsewhere. The cliche goes, "someone has to want to help themselves before you can help them." Now, when I see the same patterns in others I know, I can step back and choose to limit my involvement. It's not a heartless or callous thing -- it's an understanding of the nature of the problem. A wakeup call delivered from a concerned friend will only last so long before it's forgotten; I have more constructive ways in which to expend my energy.

When it comes to emotional relationships that aren't platonic, the issues go deeper. In the worst case, everyone around the couple can get sucked in -- involved. People become pawns; knowing or not. They can be played and they are used to gain advantage in hurtful and selfish ways by both parties. It's hard to see when you're inside the ugly mess. People choose sides and lines are drawn in the sand. Whispers are made behind backs, and - as I've said before - false smiles and insincere words of consolation or advice are easily misinterpreted as honestly intentioned.

It can eventually get to a point where ties need to be cut. The rope is so badly knotted that it must be severed; acquaintences cast off in an effort to eliminate drama and tighten the circle that surrounds you. It's an unfortunate reality, and it's difficult to be the one to make that choice; self-less maturity versus selfish immaturity. Sometimes you need to lose the battle in order to win the war. And by that, I don't mean the war that exists between the two parties, but the war that exists around all of us. Happiness.

I wish more people were willing to make a mutual concession. However, when you get to a certain age -- say late 20's, it seems the logical truism that age and wisdom go hand in hand breaks down. At a point, life experience mitigates the wisdom gained with age. I have met 30-year-olds who have learned far less from life than some 25-year-olds I know. This isn't a shock; everybody knows it. But it's hard to pick out who to trust from who just paints a pretty picture until, under stress, they show their true colours. Sometimes I'm surprised.