Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Best Out of Office Auto-Reply

Tonight my work is sending me to Amsterdam for an unknown amount of time.   I certainly never expected to be sent to Amsterdam by this little job that I do, but off I go.  How long will I be there?  Don't know.  Will I be able to post from there?  Don't know.  Will I take pictures?  Come on.  Absolutely.

So see you tomorrow or see you in a week or see you in two months.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Best Various Nights, Various Friends

Last Wednesday night Chaunte came over.  Why did Chaunte come over?

Because we were having her a birthday paaartay!

Lots of luminaries came to celebrate, luminaries like Alpha.

And Broek.

And you know, lots of others.  Listen, I was partyin'.  Not photographin'.

Friday night Rachel came over.  Why did Rachel come over?  Cuz she was in town, and to school me at Rummikub.

And then Saturday night Jeff was in town.  Why was Jeff in town?  For workin'.  And partyin'.  We tried to party by eating at Roberta's.  But there was a two and a half hour wait.  At six thirty.  So we headed for other parts of Brooklyn.

Parts with BYOB night painting classes.

To eat at good ol Dumont.



And to play a few games at the good ol' Barcade.

The loneliness of the Lone Jouster.

And then Sunday night Jared was in town.  Why was Jared in town?  What?  You're going to tell this guy what he can or can't do?

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Best Art Show I Nearly Missed

On Saturday, the very last day possible, I saw the Billy Childish show at the Lehmann Maupin gallery just a few blocks from my apartment.

Who is Billy Childish?  Well, according to the wall text . . .

But according to me: Billy Childish is a British punk rock musician whose music I was introduced to in 1995 and for a good many years I was nearly obsessed with.  Ask me what my favorite band of all time is and I'll hem and haw trying to pick between the Milkshakes, Thee Mighty Caesars, and Thee Headcoats.  

Billy also paints and writes, and his painting has improved.  He's a big deal now, to the gallery folk.

I was partial towards his volcano work.

On the second floor of the gallery there was a room exhibiting some of his books and records.  If you were at the show with me you would have had to listen to me pointing to each record, one at a time, saying: "Got that one, love that one, don't have that one, don't have that one, got that one . . . no, not that one, that one, bought that one two days before going into the MTC, bought that one the other week when I was in California, don't have that one, never heard of that one, totally have that one . . ." and on and on.

And these are barely a drop in the album bucket.  I was kind of disappointed in the number of compilations and retrospectives on the wall.  Those ones don't count.

And the books!  Books whose names I had only seen in Maximum Rock n Roll articles or read on websites of the late mid-nineties.

Self published (well, technically it's all self published) work of the late 70s, early 80s.

That book there, in the lower right hand corner, was the object of an impossible and fruitless search during college.  And then Saturday there I stood, staring it down, a pane of glass keeping me from flipping through its pages.

One more painting.

And just an office.  For selling you these paintings, if you're ready for one.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Best Birthday of the Year, Every Year

Once again it's Andy's birthday again.

Maybe you know or maybe you don't, but 2011 was a rugged year for Andy.  But he continues to battle and rage with his particular ferociousness; the last time I visited him he saw me coming into his room and just started yelling at me, I tell you it brought joy to my heart.  While my favorite birthday party of the year has been postponed, I will be paying him a little visit tonight.  If you have any birthday wishes you'd like me to pass on to him, please leave them in the comments.  I know he will appreciate them.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Best Back to the Noodle Bar

Would you believe I haven't been to the Momofuku Noodle Bar since, err, October?  Dipped in for a little dinner last week, let's run down the dishes, new and old.

Tried the Brisket Buns, pretty nice.  Would have liked more kick from the horseradish and pickled onions.  Of the non-Pork variety buns I think the Ebi Filet-O-esque shrimp buns are still my favorites.

Roasted Cauliflower with preserved lemon, harissa (middle eastern pepper adding a decent amount of heat), and walnut sauce.  Wish I had had a spoon to finish the walnut sauce off with.

Momofuku Ramen.  The classic.  Pork belly, pork shoulder, pork broth, poached egg, a few vegetables.  I appreciate it more each time I get it.  And here is my trick: Always take home any leftover broth.  Cook with it later.  It'll porky-up a dish real nice.

Duck Salad.  What is it that they say?  "Run don't walk?"  Well, run, don't walk (and push over who you have to) to the Noodle Bar to try this seasonal dish because it is.  Wow.  It is just wow.  A salad of shredded duck confit, a few thin slices of breast (I presume), ribbons of squash, some hazelnut, some brown butter.    I hesitate to use the word "umami" but I do believe this dish punches the umami tastebuds right in their mouths.  Best duck dish I've had in a week!  I miss it bad.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Best Wishes

Just because it's the very end of my brother Greg's birthday doesn't mean I can't wish him a Happy Birthday.  Happy Birthday, here are some pictures you might not ever have seen before.  Or haven't seen in a long time.  And also, relax people.  I called him earlier in the day.  This isn't some last minute remembering it was his birthday kind of thing.

These are all from back when I was your age.

It's not like I've got a whole lot of really interesting pictures from thirteen years ago that I've been holding onto.  Just a few.

Best SEE! It Only Took Two Posts

And now, the thrilling conclusion of my Martin Luther King Day Weekend in DC.

Sunday morning, Jeff cooked us sauteed spinach and poached eggs.  Just add his name to the list of people who make me feel inferior about my egg poaching skills.

We spent a bit of the morning at the Hirshhorn admiring the arrangement of their Andy Warhol Shadows exhibit.

And ran into the Air and Space Museum "just for a minute" to see the model of the Enterprise used in the making of the original Star Trek show.

And, you know, a few other things.

Of all the people to have ever killed Brits and Americans, I think the Red Baron will always be our favorite.  We just love how he got us so bad!

I didn't know the Germans used dazzle camouflage on their planes.  Looks fabulous!

Who doesn't love a great war mural?

Or space mural?  Who doesn't love a mural, really.  That's what I should have said.

Remember these?  Those outdoor exercise stations?  So P90X!

And then we attended worship services just over the border in Maryland, my home.

And then we had lunch at this place called, uhhh, Gary's Update* or something?  Where the menu was a newspaper?  We went there because Jeff and I both felt like mashed potatoes.  I had meatloaf, he had chicken fried steak, the steak won.

*Ted's Bulletin, that's the name of it.  Had to do internet research.

Ted's seems to be well-known for its house made Pop Tarts.  Didn't try one, but those ones in the front there are topped with bacon.

That night I hung out with the Notorious F.I.E.T. in the mysterious land called Arlington,

We made what I like to believe was the world's first ever Grilled Corn Cookie Mozzarella Swiss sandwich.  If you know for a fact that someone else used Momofuku Corn Cookies to make a mozarella and Swiss cheese sandwich please let me know.

The Verdict: Better with Cheddar.

The next morning?  Monuments!!

This is the guy that said he had not yet begun to fight.  TR was a fan.

Right place, right time.

As you can see, the crowd loved this Park Ranger.  And let's hear it for Park Rangers in general.  They know their stuff and they know their stories.

Unfortunately we missed our chance to hear one of history's most famous speeches recited through darling little lisps.

DC what happened to your lawn?  And pool?

After Abe, I visited my old friend Button.

Then it was over to the Arlington National Cemetery.  Had never been before, if you can believe it.

President Taft.  TR rescinded his fanship.

Help me out: Is that burning an eternal flame?

"Bivouac of the Dead"

Childhood photos of deceased soldiers from every state of the Union.

Then after that I paid a little visit to the Newseum.  If you want to visit a museum that will somber you up, may I recommend the one-two-three punch of the Newseum's East Berlin/Pullitzer Prize Photos (9 out of 10 of those photos being of people dying/about to die/having just died)/and September 11th exhibits.

This is the Leica (and 35mm Summicron) used to take the famous photo of the girl in Vietnam running down the street naked after the Napalm attack.

But, on the lighter side, they had a fun exhibit on Sports Photography.

And it's just cool looking in there in general.

Before we knew it it was time to catch our Megabus home.  Courtney saw us off like we were dignitaries or something.

Imagine my delighted surprise to discover our Megabus had a see-through window.  Too bad I didn't have much to see-through at on the ride home.  And was Dave on our bus home with us too?  Maybe.

Okay, okay.  Dave was.  He totally was.