Wednesday, September 29, 2004

DC revisted

between VH1 Classic screenings Mary and I went to DC (well, actually I met Mary there). Things accomplished:
1) We ate indian tacos on the mall. how's that for bitchin'?
2) We went to the National Museum of the American Indian at the Smithsonian. Quite good, though the building itself fails as a museum on one significant front: It doesn't flow. For me, ever since the Ghetty museums need to have flow, directional integrity, to feel proper. On all other fronts the NMAI is a success as both a museum and as a building.
3)Hung out with Naira (file photo used for compliance with international treaty) and her roommate Ana at Georgetown's IR school. Naira's taking a class from M. Allbright and I will admit to considerable jealousy. Ana was impressively shocked that Lambchop will be at Wienen Konzerthaus, which made me check out the building when I got home. Wow. Not the most ideal venue for projection but certainly awesomely beautiful.
4) Drove to Breezewood, PA to meet Greg, Tricia, and Lucy for a picnic. Our last chance to see them before they are three (no offense, Lucy).

the doctor is on the medicine

Alas, the aesthetically pleasing interior of Rosewood was locked behind closed doors last night when Gordon, Graham and I went out for Gordon's bachelor party. A real shame in my opinion. The alternative was the San Francisco Brewing Company which was quite good. After a boy's night out we caught up with the girls after their girl's night in (owing to the suprisingly sleeping Lucy) only to find Mary, Red Bull and Vodka induced swerve fully on. Reminded me of Luxembourg for some reason...
I suspect all the accents and the realization that I'll be in Europe for a full month made her pine for the special Tour de France hangover memory. I suspect I'll have a few while on the road.

Monday, September 27, 2004

All I want to do when I wake up in the morning is see your eyes

Maiden Jet Blue flight to DC this weekend. Much to report of the trip but most remarkable (aside from the new plane, which still had that new plane smell) was VH1 Classics, featuring Toto:

the flight back featured the much better Public Image Ltd. - of course not flowers of romance vintage but what did you expect.
more to come...

Thursday, September 23, 2004

Love While AWOL

Wow. The blogosphere is a strange place. I'm totally in love with the "next blog" button. Today I stumbled upon this blog and was really strangely moved by its contents (not the missing the stuffed hot dog part). It's a strange place to share, the Internet, and it's strange how some folks decide to share and react to comments on what they're sharing. This particular woman, who identifies herself as "A 22 year old woman trying to figure out where to take her life. I have been married to Billy for four and a half years, have a beautiful 10 month old son, and have recently returned to my job as an exotic dancer." tells some pretty intense stories of a life, well, very, very different from my own. Her story about joining the Army and loving the discipline, but eventually going AWOL and meeting her husband on the way to jail is totally weird but compellingly honest. It actually feels like a work of fiction, but a good work of fiction. Anyway...this was how I squandered the time I had allotted to see the Commission meeting - which was so over full they shut the doors and sent me back upstairs. I don't have my headphones to listen online unfortunately.

junkie nurse

Ahhh San Francisco. After a nice meal at Thep Phenom with John and Ned Kane (yes, THE Ned Kane) we walked toward JVJ's crib through the mission as John and I tried to convince Ned that SF was the place to be. Well, right as we were saying that a guy with a box full of "insulin" syringes reached his arm down into the public loo between the door and the wall and triggered the automatic release. The door opened and the guy disappeared for a good give minutes before I decided that peeing on a BART train would be more fun. Now I know I don't need a quarter to shoot up anymore.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

double knots and weak affirmatives

Zeitgeist last night, welcoming back Colin with JVJ and Bjorn with Arshad I was pleased to hear a gentleman (is the wrong word) stand up and yell "IS THERE ANYBODY HERE"(queue Thee Headcoates)"who ties their shoes with double knots?!" a table away a man replied on one pair of shoes because the laces suck and another (colin actually) when he wears his boots for the same reason. High 5ives were had at the table of origin and the drinking which had paused rejoined the drinking that never stopped.

The thing was, at first I was absolutely certain this man was a fan of double knots, but after a few moments I began to wonder...

Sunday, September 19, 2004

underground cinema eat your heart out

The Guardian published this totally awesome piece my old roommate and compadre James Bond sent me on a 400 seat modern theater 50 feet under Paris in the catacombs:

Police in Paris have discovered a fully equipped cinema-cum-restaurant in a large and previously uncharted cavern underneath the capital's chic 16th arrondissement.
Officers admit they are at a loss to know who built or used one of Paris's most intriguing recent discoveries.
"We have no idea whatsoever," a police spokesman said.
"There were two swastikas painted on the ceiling, but also celtic crosses and several stars of David, so we don't think it's extremists. Some sect or secret society, maybe. There are any number of possibilities."
Members of the force's sports squad, responsible - among other tasks - for policing the 170 miles of tunnels, caves, galleries and catacombs that underlie large parts of Paris, stumbled on the complex while on a training exercise beneath the Palais de Chaillot, across the Seine from the Eiffel Tower.
After entering the network through a drain next to the Trocadero, the officers came across a tarpaulin marked: Building site, No access.
Behind that, a tunnel held a desk and a closed-circuit TV camera set to automatically record images of anyone passing. The mechanism also triggered a tape of dogs barking, "clearly designed to frighten people off," the spokesman said.
Further along, the tunnel opened into a vast 400 sq metre cave some 18m underground, "like an underground amphitheatre, with terraces cut into the rock and chairs".
There the police found a full-sized cinema screen, projection equipment, and tapes of a wide variety of films, including 1950s film noir classics and more recent thrillers. None of the films were banned or even offensive, the spokesman said.

A smaller cave next door had been turned into an informal restaurant and bar. "There were bottles of whisky and other spirits behind a bar, tables and chairs, a pressure-cooker for making couscous," the spokesman said.
"The whole thing ran off a professionally installed electricity system and there were at least three phone lines down there."
Three days later, when the police returned accompanied by experts from the French electricity board to see where the power was coming from, the phone and electricity lines had been cut and a note was lying in the middle of the floor: "Do not," it said, "try to find us."
The miles of tunnels and catacombs underlying Paris are essentially former quarries, dating from Roman times, from which much of the stone was dug to build the city.
Today, visitors can take guided tours around a tightly restricted section, Les Catacombes, where the remains of up to six million Parisians were transferred from overcrowded cemeteries in the late 1700s.
But since 1955, for security reasons, it has been an offence to "penetrate into or circulate within" the rest of the network.
There exist, however, several secretive bands of so-called cataphiles, who gain access to the tunnels mainly after dark, through drains and ventilation shafts, and hold what in the popular imagination have become drunken orgies but are, by all accounts, innocent underground picnics.
The recent discovery of three newly enlarged tunnels underneath the capital's high-security La Santé prison was put down to the activities of one such group, and another, iden tifying itself as the Perforating Mexicans, last night told French radio the subterranean cinema was its work.
Patrick Alk, a photographer who has published a book on the urban underground exploration movement and claims to be close to the group, told RTL radio the cavern's discovery was "a shame, but not the end of the world". There were "a dozen more where that one came from," he said.
"You guys have no idea what's down there."

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

DJ names

Okay, DJ names are things I've felt compelled to make fun of for a good long while. Today, however, I was firmly put in place by the inimatble Peter V. Allen. His creation (which he said I could use freely):

DJ Lew Stylus

which totally tops my:

DJ Will Spinforfood

O2b23 again

Monday, September 13, 2004

only in the bay area (or anywhere but Seattle)

On the way back from Fresno, where Mary and I attended Uncle Ash's 90th birthday we were passed by a Porsche Carrera with the following license plate:


I busted out laughing and immediately called Slim and GB.

twice now, I've been limited by the resolution of my treo's camera when trying to snap pics from the road...sigh.

Friday, September 10, 2004

designing a steeper shit

Drove in to the city today (poopmobile) thinking I would poach a prime parking space for Saturday the 12th's SF Grand Prix (tried to find a link but clearly, they opted to not hire a publicist - there's almost nothing available and no one I know even knew it was going on) only to realize the 12th was in fact Sunday. All was not lost however, becuase this morning I was greated with the spendid view of progress, gilded gold with morning sunlight:

Yes, a bright green port-a-potty was being hoisted high, high into the air by one of the Bay Bridge's giant red cranes. I tried to snap a pic or two with the 600 but, alas, the resolution of the phone limits the impact of the reproduction of such grandure. There is it, just to the right of the closest light pole. Of course, by the time I was close enough to really snap a great pic, the damned crapper had been lowered to the pylon and was out of view. woulda been so perfect with the large blue color field and the red repetition from the cranes plus the bright green camode.

Thursday, September 09, 2004


this headline made me laugh:

CORRECTED-Hurricane Ivan sweeps towards Jamaica

I know, I know, it was almost certainly something like the speed of the wind or something but the idea that Reuters had somehow mistaken warned, say, Jameroqui (or however they spell their name - someone once said it's an African language that means "sounds like Stevie Wonder") that death was nigh ("sorry about the start" said in the queen's best english) and that they forgot to warn a former colony of it's impending doom (which a few cholera epidemics should have hinted at years ago) makes me snicker.

I dunno, maybe they used a verb less evocative than sweep (storms? rushes? moves?) I imagine the dulled pencil of the foreign correspontant crossing out the rejected words as the winds pick up - all of this instead of working...

you're like a cigarette

Sitting on a stoop, waiting to buy some bike stuff (duh) in the upper haight yesterday Jerry Garcia's doppleganger (no, really) began a conversation which eventually migrated to me (I was the only other person around) - "oh shit I forgot my cigarettes! this damned bus will never come now" (this reasoning always makes me laugh, even as a non-smoker I know it's a proven fact that lighting a cigarette is one of the few things that will make a bus come) - Jerry mumbles something about Muni letting him down then, I suspect partially because of my chuckle and partially because there was no one else there, asks me for the time (which was 6:05 or so) - he was, I learned, trying to get to 37th and Geary by 7:00 (quite doable). No sooner had I told him the time than the bus came careening down Masonic stopping (just barely) to pick him up (no attempt to pull to the curb).

"you're like a cigarette man!" he yelled as the bus doors were closing. I can only imagine how terrifying this must have been to those passengers who didn't have the context.

Jerry Fucking Garcia thinks I'm like a cigarette.

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

rush to judge

I am in one of those phases, where work benefits from some unallied enthusiam which, I suspect, will eventually betray it. At the moment the unallied enthusiasm is a potential tour of Europe with Lambchop, performing a score Kurt wrote for Murnau's Sunrise. Really quite a great film - it's been almost a decade since I last saw it. Aside from inspiring me to at least plan some poster art for the first time in a long while, I've been really amazed at 1) the complexities of copyright law from an international perspective, especially with regard to the EU and 2) how totally lame America is about anything that isn't culturally "now" - why can't this kind of event work successfully in the EEUU?


The crowd fell silent and confused

The exact line as reported in the nytimes was:

Visitors and guests at the Army's Dugway Proving Ground here, watching the retrieval on large screens in a hanger, cheered when the images of the returning capsule appeared at 9:53 a.m. Over the next few minutes, the image grew bigger, showing a capsule spinning and tumbling.

The crowd fell silent and confused when the mission controller said, "ground impact."

I'm still a little unsure how one can fall confused but...

A parachute failed to deploy and a $260 million space project crashes to the earth instead of being fantastically snagged from midair. Is anyone to blame? For me at least, this is not discouraging - but maybe that means I've been working in government too long - we've certainly spent billions on less useful projects. Tres Keynsian of me no?

Probably deserving of another blog:

Saw Time Code Sunday night with JB, Pete full of anger, GB, Jay et al. Dogma films are always worth talking about, which I miss in much cinema. Best line of the film: "Trotsky in the house - diggy diggy" (sung is the best white boy rap you've ever heard).

Note to self: Salma Hayek is not a great improvisor.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

sweet equity

Mary and I got to spend two of the three weekend daze in Santa Rosa helping Doug and Paul with Gale's place. Actually the only thing sweet was hangin' out with gramps. As Gale slips further into insanity I do have to wonder why I'm busting my ass for her equity when I all get in return is BS accusations. This is, I suppose, what one does for family. I was a plumber, a painter and a candlestick maker. most importantly though, I got to try out my new DeWalt 14.4V cordless. hot damn!. For the record, Paul is pretty damned cool. It's kinda sad it looks like I'll be out of town for his birthday.

Speaking of hot. Not only was it way up in the 90s all over, but the gyserville fire filled the edge of SR with smoke and ash...12000 acres burned. Check out NASA's satelite images of the fire!

Friday, September 03, 2004

chalk, my life, ballet, and the real world

Slim pointed me toward this sad bit of news. For a quick read of the anti-graf stuff, Joshua seems to have a pretty good foundation for a defense lined up. I'm always interested in seeing how the cops document these sorts of events in their arrest reports and on trial because so much hinges on their perceptions:

"at 13:00 I encountered the accused being interviewed by a former ballet dancer near several small dots of chalk"

so sad.

crescat sententia

My new favorite blog discovered by chance whilst whiling (okay, technically I was looking for a dissenting opinion in the brand x case). So wonderfully U of C, and yet, so totally bitchin' at the same time (like the sound of one hand clapping) I quote one Amanda Butler:

"This past Sunday, as I was waiting for the Jeffrey at 57th and Stony Island, I saw a monster truck pull out of a parking lot and gingerly merge onto Cornell Drive. A second monster truck then pulled out, following close behind Grave Digger. All this was cool, but raised many questions: is it legal to drive those in Hyde Park? where, why, how? can I try? is there clearance for that to pull into the parking garage under the MSI? "

Oh, if only I had been smart enought to properly scam my way into the U of C law school...

Regardless and irrespective (I'm not dwelling on things here folks, instead, I'm quitting my job and joining a rock band showing silent movies across Europe in retaliation) : I immediately thought of Box-o-Donuts and Mr. Dave Menke's Galaxy of Mailbox Whores...
Ahhhh....Hyde Park.

Thursday, September 02, 2004

begin the begin

Well, come then, to my swift comeuppance, the blogarific, blogadelic, blogtastic and blogtacular blog of Aram Shumavon. Starting, I feel apropriately, with some awesome pics sent to me (and my longest having been friends compadre John Kane, aka JVJ, aka Juan Val Juan, aka Jota Val Jota, aka Jan Noble) by my dear brother Greg.

That's right:

pictures of:
Ms. Melvin's 3-5 grade class from the McGuffey Lab School
Mrs. Kretchmer's class, similarly grouped.

Not only do these fantastic, horrifying and stultifying photos remind me of "the long walk" across the campus of Miami University to school, but they shocked me with the blatant, no crass is a better word, diversity we were so cruely subjected to during those otherwise halcyon days in small town southwestern white, white, white rural Ohio.

And while I was so happy to see Chichi Duramaku's smiling face, I did have to wonder whatever happened to some of those folks (Chichi included)?