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batteries can't help you now

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things you try when you are lazy but also trying to not be [24 May 2007|12:27am]
Typing "to the" in the iTunes search box actually resulted in a pretty good playlist. I ended up with 17 songs, mostly right on.

oops: turns out I did this in my smart "recently played" playlist, not the main iTunes library, which I found out when trying to duplicate the playlist to take a screencap (see below in the comments)-- that accounts for the small size. Still, a good set of tunes, mostly.
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[17 May 2007|03:23pm]
Alice Cooper just said (on Fresh Air) one of his alternate band names might have been "Husky Baby Sandwich," which I think is awesome.
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Lester Bangs on Astral Weeks [10 May 2007|12:06am]

Read this review at work a few weeks ago, after meeting one of the people that played on the record, and subsequently fell in love with the title track. So good.

What Astral Weeks deals in are not facts but truths. Astral Weeks, insofar as it can be pinned down, is a record about people stunned by life, completely overwhelmed, stalled in their skins, their ages and selves, paralyzed by the enormity of what in one moment of vision they can comprehend. It is a precious and terrible gift, born of a terrible truth, because what they see is both infinitely beautiful and terminally horrifying: the unlimited human ability to create or destroy, according to whim. It's no Eastern mystic or psychedelic vision of the emerald beyond, nor is it some Baudelairean perception of the beauty of sleaze and grotesquerie. Maybe what it boiled down to is one moment's knowledge of the miracle of life, with its inevitable concomitant, a vertiginous glimpse of the capacity to be hurt, and the capacity to inflict that hurt.
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[29 Apr 2007|02:53pm]
Wind fluttering the curtains, curtain knocks the empty wine glass off of the windowsill, sound of breaking glass, then quiet, wind fluttering the curtains.
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today so far [20 Apr 2007|03:04pm]
Bright sun, everyone bustling back and forth on the avenue. Haircut finally, although there was a bit of a wait at the barber shop, Joe is recovering from having kidney stones removed, and his assistant was all alone to deal with the Friday crowd. On my way back one of the old women that live on my block stopped me and said I looked thin -- "when you moved in you were heavy!" -- and I thanked her (even though I don't think it is true) and it was a funny moment. Went to Webbcam and bought a bunch of Holgas and film for the workshop tomorrow. Coffee. Now trying to keep the momentum going.
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bachelor notebook [04 Apr 2007|01:56am]
Problem: need a clip to hold the rolled down top of a bag of tortilla chips closed. Solution: ballpoint pen. Take pen with cap and clip to top of rolled down bag. Brush teeth and go to bed full of smug satisfaction.
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today [27 Mar 2007|07:04pm]
"Just so you know, I was pretty heavily Internet stalking you for a while there."

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[27 Mar 2007|06:51pm]
Today--the first spring-like day since the beginning of spring--when I came out of the house around noon I noticed the neighborhood had decided to clean the street, Fishtown style: open the fire hydrant at one end of the block full blast with a pair of vice grips and flood the street for like twenty minutes, pushing all of the loose junk down the sewer at the other end of the block. Classic.
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[22 Mar 2007|10:09pm]
Working on a new little thing. Still getting everything built out, but let me know if you spot any problems.
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[16 Mar 2007|02:06pm]
The profile of Karl Lagerfeld by John Colapinto in the current New Yorker is pretty fantastic--literally. The whole showy nature of Lagerfeld's life is fascinating to me, in a kind of half dread, half jealous way.
The second floor is composed of huge rooms with soaring ceilings, ornate plasterwork, wood paneling, and fifteen-foot-high mirrors. The furniture, a mixture of antique and modernist pieces, was almost impossible to see, hidden under hundreds of magazines, CDs, photographs, promotional brochures, and books, which lay in heaps spilling on every surface, including the floors. Scattered through the rooms were dozens of iPod nanos of every hue. Each one was loaded with songs that Lagerfeld listens to when designing his collections, which he does, he says, usually in the mornings, while dressed in a long white smock. Surveying the scene through his black glasses, Lagerfeld said serenely, "Normal people think I’m insane."

Commandeering a grand carpeted staircase at the hotel [the Hôtel de Paris], he directed his assistants to set up a portable photography studio, which included a Mac laptop, lights, and an array of digital cameras. He proceeded to take photographs of the Princess, Charlotte, her brother Andrea, the Nijinsky Award winners, his assistants, and any other member of his retinue who was still standing. Wielding a large black camera, he directed his subjects to pose this way and that, reaching over to adjust an arm or a leg. He took photographs the way he sketches: fast—popping off shots, then diving over to the laptop to see the results on the screen. "It's not bad, non?" he would announce, before racing back to his subject to shoot another round of pictures. By 3 A.M., the large group of people on the stairs had dwindled to twenty or so. The two men working the computer hung their heads and rubbed their eyes, yawning, and slumped in their folding chairs. Amanda Harlech, in a navy-blue Chanel gown of tiered ruffles, waved away a waiter who had materialized with a tray of champagne and said she was about to collapse. Lagerfeld, unaware, or uninterested, hurried over and told her to get under the lights and pose, which she did without complaint. By 4 A.M., even the most concerted night owls could take it no more. Olivier Zahm, his hair falling over his tinted sunglasses, a chewed half-smoked cigar hanging from his mouth, and a glass of flat champagne in his hand, stumbled across the lobby to his room. Behind him, Lagerfeld's camera continued to snap away.
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[09 Mar 2007|03:57pm]
Giving VueScan a try again -- it seems to be faster than the Epson scan software, and I can do stuff in PS while a scan is taking place. Still having trouble with purple fringing on some negs (xpro'd stuff mostly, but some straight color).
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[14 Feb 2007|03:13pm]
Right now: I'm gleefully compiling the most obvious, silly, pretty biased towards anti-V-day music compilation, since there is a gig at the club tonight and I need something to counter the mush. Hopefully this new pre-show mix will do it. "Love Will Tear Us Apart" is banned, and I am trying (but failing) to restrain my Magnetic Fields selections. I didn't think I would enjoy it as much as I am-- working with Girlfriend In A Coma, a cover of Age Of Consent, Smokers In Love, I Think I Need A New Heart, The White Lady Loves You More, Lady Godiva's Operation, If You Don't Cry, some Scott Walker.
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only, every [12 Feb 2007|03:05pm]
Waiting for film to dry -- trying to shoot more every day, difficult since my LC-A stopped working; I miss its compact size. Late lunch at Honey's; I am addicted to the western omelette (green and red peppers, onions, local ham) impossibly light, so delicious. A major part of its success I am convinced is the very finely chopped ingredients, allowing a nice even distribution of "stuff" in every bite, without being overpowering. Also it helps that the staff somehow maintains some sort of reality distortion field whereby no matter what sort of outside chaos rages, it is incredibly calm and pleasant in the restaurant (this may not apply on the weekends, when the bed head hipsters line up around the block for brunch, hungover, spaced out, bored beautiful). At the counter someone was reading Make magazine -- described as "a journal of people making art out of junk, starting to be really popular in San Francisco" -- and talking to his friend about buying a Mercedes diesel wagon. The guy installing the new toaster in the kitchen is in a rock band, opening for The Swimmers at The Fire tomorrow. In the middle of the restaurant, a table with a few local C-list celebrities eating lunch. A lot of people came in, everyone wearing sunglasses, as I was leaving.
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[12 Feb 2007|03:19am]
 * goes well with: "Hold On, Hold On" by Neko Case; any Her Space Holiday record; Fleetwood Mac's eponymous first record; The Shrinking Island's first record (except the first track); Dreams from Erlend Øye.
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last night [11 Feb 2007|04:44pm]
When I went out to pick up my burger from the local deli, I noticed some guy had somehow locked his keys in his car while it was still running, standing there on his phone trying to get someone to come open the car, with the thumpa thumpa of bad techno on the radio going strong.
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the remains of the day [07 Feb 2007|07:27pm]
The big accomplishment of the day (besides getting out of bed, which remains pretty difficult these days, despite my self-imposed alcohol embargo) was getting a haircut. Also I walked to the post office, and then discovered that the little convenience store recently opened under the EL at Front and Girard has plans to be open 24/7 starting in late March, which made me happy.
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on books [07 Feb 2007|02:15am]

Two books I've been meaning to note: first, a collection of Hemingway's journalism that I picked up in a used bookstore sometime last fall (and have been dipping into every now and then), By-line: Ernest Hemingway, Selected Articles and Dispatches of Four Decades, edited by William White. It's pretty great, full of terse yet eloquent dispatches of Golden Age living, filed while swanning around the fancy hotels of Europe, drinking, fishing, snubbing celebrities. Two good bits, first from "American Bohemians in Paris," published in the Toronto Star Weekly, March 25, 1922:

It is a strange-acting and strange-looking breed that crowd the tables of the Cafe Rotonde. They have all striven so hard for a careless individuality of clothing that they have achieved a sort of uniformity of eccentricity. A first look into the smoky, high-ceilinged, table-crammed interior of the Rotonde gives the same feeling that hits you as you step into the bird house at the zoo. There seems to be a tremendous, raucous, many-pitched squawking going on broken up by many waiters who fly around through the smoke like so many black and white magpies.


[Regarding the clientele of the Cafe Rotonde:] They are nearly all loafers expending the energy that an artist puts into his creative work in talking about what they are going to do and condemning the work of all artists who have gained any degree of recognition. By talking about art they obtain the same satisfaction that the real artist does in his work. That is very pleasant, of course, but they insist upon posing as artists.

And an example of classic terse Hemingway prose, from the Toronto Daily Star, January 27, 1923:

The Fascist dictator had announced he would receive the press. Everybody came. We all crowded into the room. Mussolini sat at his desk reading a book.

Also: I picked up 2182 Kilohertz by David Masiel at random in another used bookstore, drawn to the remote arctic setting and nautical theme -- most of the action takes place at sea, evoking beautiful distant names like the Beaufort Sea and Prudhoe Bay, and ships with names like Fearless and Vigilant. I like the idea of people sitting alone on the edge of the world in little huts waiting, listening, as evoked here: "The barge called Early Warning was so named for the cargo run it served, the line of Distant Early Warning radar stations that dotted the western and arctic coasts of Alaska."

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[06 Feb 2007|12:08am]
Oh, I saw Martin Amis speak at the library last week.

Full story after the jumpCollapse )
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[05 Feb 2007|11:18pm]
I'm late to board the Children Of Men love train, but hey, consider me in the lounge car now, curled up in the corner, vaguely conscious. It was hard to watch the film without thinking how current it looks, it could be tomorrow, tomorrow with a terrible twist, which is I suppose why it was so good. Fancy dinner under Guernica, exquisitely designed home suicide kits, advertising everywhere, really killer photography and art direction. Brazil is kind of the obvious comparison in this dystopian future genre (sort of homage, opening the film with a terrorist explosion?) except Children Of Men felt much more subtle, and the violence (especially considering the stream of images from urban battlefields that have been a staple of these past few years) terrifyingly real.
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[28 Jan 2007|06:48pm]
Todd Roberts is in love. Todd Roberts just thinks he is in love. Todd Roberts is not in love. Todd Roberts will never be in love. Todd Roberts was in love once, but not now. Just now, Todd Roberts thought he was in love. Todd Roberts is lousy with love. Todd Roberts laid low, waiting for love to pass him by. Todd Roberts passsed by a couple locked in a loving embrace. Todd Roberts wonders about locking up love. Todd Roberts will look up one day and be struck down by love. Todd Roberts struck out yesterday, struck down by love.
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