Monday, August 31, 2009

Best What Will Become of This?

Disney is buying Marvel?

And the first thing I wonder is: What will become of the Marvel-themed area at Universal Studios Florida?

Best House Burning

Friday night there was a little party at 33 Gold to celebrate the emptying out of this long-standing fortress, the former home to Jeff, Stephen, Michael, Ryan, Adam, Adam, Kristian, John, and probably one or two other guys.

For nearly five years these walls were purple.

Ryan, an original tenant.

To the left, me, playing the songs.

To the right, transmissions received?

How many is too many? Trick question.

The party was to be a rockin' rock n roll dance party. During the mulling stage I played some nice old ska songs from the 60s, then a touch of pop, then some heavy hip hop, and then the rock n roll. If you take a close look at the playlist it's not hard to find the point where the rock theme was abandoned or the point where it was returned to.

Harry and Radcliffe, "History"
Andy Capp, "The Law"
Vincent Gordon and the Dynamic, "2,000 Tons of TNT"
Tony Tribe, "Red Red Wine"
Lee Perry, "Pum Pum"
Michael Jackson, "Smooth Criminal"
Public Enemy, "Lost at Birth"
The Beastie Boys, "Jimmy James"
The Sex Pistols, "Holiday in the Sun"
David Bowie, "Suffragette City"
Talking Heads, "Burning Down the House"
Van Halen, "Panama"
The Rolling Stones, "Get Off of My Cloud"
The Ramones, "Blitzkrieg Bop"
The Clash, "White Riot"
The Killers, "Mr. Brightside"
Billy Idol, "Mony Mony"
Queens of the Stone Age, "No One Knows"
Lil Wayne, "A Milli"
Outkast, "Hey Ya"
Chris Brown, "Forever"
Chromeo, "Fancy Footwork"
Wrex N Effex, "Rump Shaker"
Prince, "Let's Go Crazy"
The Ting Tings, "Shut Up and Let Me Go"
The Divine Comedy, "To Die a Virgin"
Junior Senior, "Move Your Feet"
Erasure, "A Little Respect"
Duran Duran, "Hungry Like the Wolf"
M.I.A., "Paper Planes"
The Clash, "London Calling"
Bon Jovi, "Livin on a Prayer"
Talking Heads, "Psycho Killer"
New Order, "Bizarre Love Triangle"
Iggy & the Stooges, "Search and Destroy"
The Clash, "The Guns of Brixton"
Johnny Cash, "Cocaine Blues"
Hardcore Techno Afterparty:
Chemical Brothers, "Hey Boy Hey Girl"

39 Songs, 2.3 Hours

I still remember vividly the 33 Gold housewarming party, Conference weekend October 2004. Rebecca was in town, Karisa was just back from her trip to Italy, B Swiss was the new guy, I think I could even tell back then that I was living in what would one day be my NYC Good Ol' Days.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Best And Here's The Question

Oh Sunday evenings, what is there to do with you once the To Do List is all done?

Friday, August 28, 2009

Best Time to Invest in West Village Real Estate

If you were from out of town and we took a walk through the West Village, then sure I showed you the narrowest house in New York, right?

It can be yours for $2.7 million.

This house is also in Incredibly Loud and Extremely Close, the boy goes there and meets a lady.

Best Dispatch from My Final Waystation

This is right outside where I live right now.

This is the sort of nonsense I have to put up with on a Sunday.

This little charmer might look like she's innocently stretching, but actually she is going completely berserk with throat rattling screams between body shaking sobs demanding her Mom take her to Pinkberry. Kids are cute.

At night it's an entirely different place. An underworld.

This, however, is in Brooklyn.
And this is my old hood. Longed for and treasured, but just not meant to be.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Best My Wandering Days Are Over

In the middle of December I became homeless and began subletting around the city. Since then I've called 9 beds home and had 19 different roommates. Many generous people have helped keep me off the street or helped me move my two ever-heavier suitcases between temporary homes.

Starting September 1st, however, that big bedroom on the upper left hand corner will be mine. For at least 12 months. In that space I plan to recreate my old home at the John Adams as closely as possible.

More, much more to follow in the following days and weeks.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Best In Re: My Putting My Foot Down

I realized that if I didn't have internet at work (it has happened before) I would probably have 5 iphones by now.

That's an addendum that needed addended.

Carry on.

Best I Have Returned from Joyce's Nighttown

The Circe chapter of Ulysses is the book's longest at 183 pages, nearly all of it consisting of hallucinations experienced by Bloom as he trails Stephen through the streets of Dublin's redlighty "Night Town" to the parlor of Bella Cohen's brothel. But this chapter is actually one of the book's easiest sections, if you ask me, because whenever it gets weird it's no big deal because it's all just hallucinations...of course, you have to caught on that he's hallucinating to reap this benefit and stay sharp to when it's not a hallucination. Also, the chapter is written as a drama with lots of stage directions, making it even easier to follow. In it's way.

Some excerpts, light on the context:

(A sinister figure leans on plaited legs against O'Beirne's wall, a visage unknown, injected with dark mercury. From under a wideleaved sombrero the figure regards him with evil eye.) (p. 436)

During most of the first part of Circe Bloom faces a hallucinatory trial where he is mostly slandered:


He is a marked man. Another girl's plait cut. Wanted: Jack the Ripper. A thousand pounds reward.


(Awed, whispers.) And in black. A mormon. Anarchist.

(pg. 470)

But is also sometimes transformed into the heroic leader of all of Ireland (here he greeting and serving his people):


(Shaking hands with a blind stripling.) My more than Brother! (Placing his arms round the shoulders of an old couple.) Dear old friends! (He plays pussy fourcorners with ragged boys and girls.) Peep! Bopeep! (He wheels twins in a perambulator.) Ticktacktwo wouldyousetashoe? (He performs juggler's tricks, draws red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet silk handkerchiefs from his mouth.) Roygbiv. 32 feet per second. (He consoles a widow.) Absence makes the heart grow younger. (He dances the Highland fling with grotesque antics.) Leg it, ye devils! (He kisses the bedsores of a palsied veteran.) Honourable wounds! (He trips up a fat policeman.) U.p: up. U.p: up. (He whispers in the ear of a blushing waitress and laughs kindly.) Ah, naughty, naughty! (He eats a raw turnip offered him by Maurice Butterly, farmer.) Fine! Splendid! (He refuses to accept three shillings offered him by Joseph Hynes, journalist.) My dear fellow, not at all! (He gives his coat to a beggar.) Please accept. (He takes part in a stomach race with elderly male and female cripples.) Come on, boys! Wriggle it, girls! (pg. 486)

And then he is called upon to administer wise counsel to his people:


What am I to do about my rates and taxes?


Pay them, my friend.


Thank you.

(pg. 487)

But Ruler Bloom falls from grace, his female subjects are distraught:

(Many most attractive and enthusiastic women also commit suicide by stabbing, drowning, drinking prussic acid, aconite, arsenic, opening their veins, refusing food, casting themselves under steamrollers, from the top of Nelson's Pillar, into the great vat of Guinness's brewery, asphyxiating themselves by placing their heads in gas ovens, hanging themselves in stylish garters, leaping from windows of different storeys.) (pg. 492)

Later, deeper inside Nighttown, curious signs begin to appear:


Silent means consent. (With little parted talons she captures his hand, her forefinger giving to his palm the passtouch of secret monitor, luring him to doom.) Hot hands cold gizzard. (pg. 501)

In the parlor, dancing ensues around the pianola:

(Zoe and Stephen turn boldly with looser swing. The twilight hours advance from long landshadows, dispersed, lagging, languideyed, their cheeks delicate with cipria and false faint bloom. They are in grey gauze with dark bat sleeves that flutter in the landbreeze.) (pg. 576)

An absolute favorite dance-description from my first read:

(Closeclutched swift swifter with glareblareflare scudding they scootlootshoot lumbering by. Baraabum!) (pg. 578)

I could have shared so much more. I recommend this whole chapter.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Best Hold On

Let's be honest, 2009 was a rotten year for summer blockbusters and it doesn't look like we're going to be ending on a high note (that's a little negative Avatar reference if you didn't pick up on my super subtlety.)

2010, however, I'm feeling good about. Consider this, the teaser trailer for Inception, Christopher Nolan's follow up to the Dark Knight.

I'm getting more of a game changer from this short little video than anything else I've seen lately (that's another Avatar jab, if you didn't catch it). Why go huge when you can grab our attention with two men brawling in a hall way in a way that at least I've never seen. This is a good trailer, it makes me curious. So curious.

Best Good Weekend

My Weekend! What a Weekend.

FRIDAY NIGHT: I suppose the weekend began when I left work at 11:45. Don't worry, I felt like man. I'm sure Grandpa Taylor was proud.

SATURDAY MORNING: Before going into work I "helped" a little with Jeff and Stephen's move out of 33 Gold. Ages are ending left and right. Collin off to Ohio, Jared is headed for Utah, Jeff and Stephen are going to Brooklyn. Maybe I should do something drastic to? Maybe?

Stephen's Gifts! Now that's a box to be excited about!

Jared loves the smell of moving in the morning. It smells like...history.

I was lent a book from the Jeffrey L. Butler Collection, Letters from Theodore Roosevelt to His Children. Click on this picture and try to tell me this won't be the perfect thing to wash Ulysses down with next week. Teddy drew that rabbit!

Michael Clark. You remember this fellow, don't you?

Day laborers, their day's labor halfway done.

Once I finished working for the man I had a job Katsitting for Grace. I was paid in awesome.

New York City, what's up?

That night there was a very fancy blowout way downtown that we made it to the last 5 minutes of. Still time enough to leave with some balloons, though. And time enough to put in some super-quality Gabe time. Been too long.

SUNDAY: Church. Church time. A time to be admonished. But with love.

Afterwords I went over to the Highline.

I went with Duane and Christine. They gave me half a sandwich!

It was my first trip to the Highline. I was the very last New Yorker to visit this new park. It is, as you have been told or read or haven't heard yet, totally rad.

Back to church just in time for the end of Jr. Primary.

Blazer A and Merry Miss.

Mingling on the street, crossing arms, sizing each other up. Such are the youth of Zion.

What's Grace cooking? You'll never know.

Thank You, New York, for this good weekend.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Best Topical Church Signery

Oh Brooklyn.

But seriously and sort of relatedly, last Sunday I gave the lesson in Elders Quorum on Forgiveness. In my researching I came across this BYU Devotional, "On Measuring Flour and Forgiveness" by Prof. Madison U. Sowell. Ladies and gentlemen, this is a real real good talk. How good? I posted a link to it on my blog that's usually about dinner or things that bug me, that good. Should be of interest to anyone interested in dealing more decently with their fellowman.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Best Getting More Efficient With My Sharing

3 of my friends are mad at me for sending this to them, 2 are pleased. I decided to take the debate from inboxes to this public forum.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Best Not Again

I just can't be trusted to take care of an umbrella.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Best Soon I Must Head West

It appears I am missing out on a burger war. I certainly would like to test this latest volley from the Carl's Jr. camp, this "Big Carl."

What really does it for me are the two slices of cheese.

Best and I Put My Foot Down on Myself

I heard the news of this new slimmer PS3 soon to debut at the low low price of $299. Oh for a moment I was tempted to want it, tempted to rationalize as an affordable and fun way to get myself a BluRay player (similar reasoning, involving DVDs, is how I wound up owning a PS2 three years ago) but I don't even own a high definition television! And self, let us be honest with ourself, the time where it would be appropriate for me to own a new flat screen high definition television set is a long way off.

And I don't need a video game machine. I am a man of 32. You may doubt me, but I tell you that I've outgrown video games. Ask me when I last played Guitar Hero and I'll tell you "I don't know." Ask me how many times I've played Street Fighter IV and I'll say "Only once!" I have better things to do with my time, like work! And go to bed!

It is so sad saying these things.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Best I Put My Foot Down

ONE: My Verizon contract ended July 30th. Have I got an iPhone now? Nope. Why not? Because I'm not getting one. Why not? Because I don't have to, it's not the law that I have to have an iPhone. But don't I want one? Sure, they're great. They're awesome. But I don't believe something so futuristic should be so prevalent, they should be scarce and inspire awe and envy when encountered. By not buying one, I'm sacrificing my ability to Shazam a song in the burger shop in order to fight the dilution of the iPhone's awesomeness.

Plus, month to month they cost so much. I'm putting my pennies elsewhere.

TWO: My dear people, we're texting too much. I'm committed to using the nearly-forgotten voice function of my phone as much as possible now. You know, the feature that let's you bend an ear instead of a thumb? Also, I never thought I'd miss the day of the impersonal email. Thanks a lot, impersonal text message.

THREE: In a moment of what seemed to be pure genius I downloaded mp3s of Thomas Pynchon's "Inherent Vice." But one track in the story was so exactly what I had hoped it'd be that I turned it off. This one needs saving for a proper reading experience. It'll be my train buddy come, hmm, late-mid September?

FOUR: Mad Men. You can watch it and I appreciate that they dress sharp but I lost interest during season one. I get it, I get it: My Grandpa's friends were all probably terrible jerks.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Best Journey Through Nighttown

Here's something I've been doing. I turn my ISO up to 640, open my lens up all the way, but pick my shutter speed manually. The results? Underexposures that I'm down with.

Good for capturing phantasms.

But in truth, last Tuesday Naomi was in town again on her way to London. Air Hostesses, they've got different rules than us.

We walked down to the Bleecker street Pinkberry because you can't get that sort of thing in Australia. We arrived and stumbled upon Sara. Small world, this New York. Even smaller when yogurt is involved.

If you see this fellow behind the counter at your Pinkberry you're about to be treated right. Surely our yogurt pours were far beyond regulation. So be it, I appreciated.

Getting a little help with our American change.



Paying the price of her vagabond ways.