Sunday, February 27, 2005

all right, so

I've got this project for one of my classes that requires me to follow a couple of newspapers for a while and see how they cover a certain issue dealing with civil rights. I thought, well, maybe I can use my local paper back home.

So I went to take a look at the old Asheville Citizen-Times, and what did I find? Why, it appears to be a completely insane letter to the editor. And I quote:

"In the grand scheme, we’re all
faster than a speeding bullet
This is in response to the letter, “Has a few suggestions for local math freaks,” (AC-T, Feb. 12). I don’t have any suggestions but I do have a request to make, and not necessarily from those on the highest level of mathematics but from anyone who might be able, arithmetically, to corroborate or to disprove a conclusion at which I have just arrived. A conclusion which, even though I believe it to be correct, is totally beyond my comprehension.
Although it was once believed that the earth was flat and stationary, around which the entire universe revolved, we know now that it is a globe revolving around a star, a nuclear furnace fueled by atomic fusion, 93 million miles distant. Which gives us the radius of our yearly orbit and from which, with the assistance of pi, we can calculate that the orbit measures 584 million miles.
Dividing this by the number of seconds in a year, 32 million (60 x 60 x 24 x 365) I calculate that our planet is traveling 18 miles per second (mps).
Dividing 18 mps by .4 mps (the speed of a rifle bullet), we come to the conclusion, with which mathematicians and creationists might or might not agree, that our planet is moving through space 45 times faster than the speed of a bullet.
Irv Filler,

Holy crap! Of course my first thought about this is that the man's name, "Filler," suggests that it is indeed a pseudonym and the op-ed editor just ran out of decent letters to publish. But maybe not. I mean... wow.

Anyway, last night I went to the green cat and listened to truly horrible music and drank little bottles of beer because they ran out of everything on tap. On a saturday night. I'm so disturbed by this I refuse to CAPitalize PrOPerLy. Wouldn't it have been easier to just go back and capitalize the 's' in Saturday? I mean, rather than capitalize all that random crap just to make it look like you'd done the 's' thing on purpose? Well, maybe.

I'm writing a concept album now. And the worst screenplay ever. And a series of letters I'll never send. And, clearly, a frankly obscene amount of blog material.

and tomorrow's my last allowed day of opulence before I start starving myself for the sake of travel. AmsterDamn I'm good.

MUSIC: electrelane: birds
AND: vocal shrapnel: rs

Friday, February 25, 2005

and who the hell...

are the lightening seeds?

I may hate them later, but this song is nice. now.


night time slows, raindrops splash rainbows
perhaps someone you know, could sparkle and shine
as daydreams slide to colour from shadow
picture the moonglow, that dazzles my eyes
and i love youjust lying smiling in the dark
shooting stars around your heart
dreams come bouncing in your head
pure and simple everytime
now you're crying in your sleep
i wish you'd never learnt to weep
don't sell the dreams you should be keeping
pure and simple everytime
dreams of sights, of sleigh rides in seasons
where feelings not reasons, can make you decide
as leaves pour down, splash autumn on gardens
as colder nights harden, their moonlit delights
and i love you
just lying smiling in the dark
shooting stars around your heart
dreams come bouncing in your head
pure and simple everytime
now you're crying in your sleep
i wish you'd never learnt to weep
don't sell the dreams you should be keeping
pure and simple everytime
look at me with starry eyes
push me up to starry skies
there's stardust in my head
pure and simple everytime
fresh and deep as oceans new
shiver at the sight of you
i'll sing a softer tune
pure and simple over you
if love's the truth then look no lies
and let me swim around your eyes
i've found a place i'll never leave
shut my mouth and just believe
love is the truth i realize
not a stream of pretty lies
to use us up and waste our time
lying smiling in the dark
shooting stars around your heart
dreams come bouncing in your head
pure and simple everytime
now you're crying in your sleep
i wish you'd never learnt to weep
don't sell the dreams you should be keeping
pure and simple everytime
look at me with starry eyes
push me up to starry skies
there's stardust in my head
pure and simple everytime
fresh and deep as oceans new
shiver at the sight of you
i'll sing a softer tune
pure and simple over you
pure and simple just for you

ladies and gentlemen

where's the string-of-consciousness? Where's the Sal Paradise-ing and the narrative thread that ought to present itself so readily to the fingers at the end of the mind of a supposed writer? And to really let things get going as uncontrollably as possible, let me ask in lieu of response whether my mind ends at my fingertips and if so is it disturbing or arousing to consider being stroked by the outer reaches of a mind?

I sleep too late. The imperative to get out of bed is weak when my day will punctuate with spending money, possibly going to classes I don't need, maybe drinking, certainly riding a tram, and, if I'm really lucky, I might even force myself to scrawl a few pages. Two thirty this afternoon I'm drinking coffee and reading Salman Rushdie. It will be the highlight of my day.

I come to the lab and waste time, because otherwise I'm just going to waste time somewhere else. I listen to webradio and read other people's blogs, and they complain about the days being full. It reminds me of that calvin and hobbes single panel, the cover of the days are just packed. I haven't had a packed day since the prevalentines day rush of my weekend in prague, and that was only packed because of the imperative of playing host. I need to be writing, I need to be developing my film and printing pictures and experimenting and double-exposing and learning to play the guitar and doing readings again and drinking wine and singing in public and running and building something and instead I'm growing facial hair. That's really it, folks, all I am doing now, really, is growing facial hair.

I told myself a few days ago that I was going to do things here. God knows I'll try but it's becoming obvious that the things I can do here are limited. I can write, certainly. I can take pictures. I can save money, I can eat better, and I can do well in these classes. It doesn't sound like so very little, but it's not enough, I don't think.

The overarching goal is lost in a haze of short days and snowblind afternoons and liquor and smoke and expat lit. and lonliness, and that's the root of it, yeah?

But perhaps I've said too much.

MUSIC: bricks: you shouldn't have smashed your guitar

how lame does it make me

that I love christie front drive? Pretty lame, huh?

and while I'm at it, being lame and all, let me just say that I kept my roommate awake for hours last night by talking about Sylvester Stallone, Armand Assante, and the mighty ducks 2.

I actually named most of the characters. and got them right.

So there's no one on my buddy list who isn't away except the santa bot. Geoffrey's in class, Shleeve's ill, Pete has apparently died, Traci is in Rome, and no one else is online at all. And Santa isn't responding.

"When I'm stable long enough I start to look around for love. See a sweet in floral print; my mind begins the arrangement. But when I start to feel that pull, turns out I just pulled myself. She would never go with me, were I the last girl on earth." God bless you, launchcast.

I suppose I've been burning up this blog box for long enough. c'est la vie.

I read White Teeth yesterday. Rather I finished it yesterday. Excellent ending. I stand by that assessment, though I'm not sure how I feel about the rest of the book.

MUSIC: elvis costello: alibi

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

it's sixty-five degrees

in asheville, NC. despite my fondness for winter weather, I find that infuriating. Maybe because I underdressed today.

I need tea, stat.

And tomorrow Dubya will be in Bratislava. He's meeting with Putin and he'll give a speech and I won't go.

screw that guy.

MUSIC: jump little children: cathdrals (again)

"say something beautiful,"

she said.

and I said, "cellar door."

MUSIC: vocal shrapnel: oh, the cleverness of me (2 years 8 months 28 days in the future)

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

"never thought this day would end...

...never thought tonight would ever be
so close to me."

so far so good.

"enjoy the silence."

MUSIC: the smiths: what difference does it make?

Monday, February 21, 2005

I can't wait to get the okay to get talkin'

A Party Able Model Of

everyone's quiet when the record ends
everyone's quiet when the record ends
o it's tragically december tonight
i said, "let's stay in. i'll cook you dinner."
anything to eat some time.
let's stay in tonight.
but somehow we always end up out.
(o wresting in pajamas so big on you)
o barlight and smoke.
maybe a hand on the small of my back.
the old testament in our talk.
and a gesture giving me away-
I can't wait to get the okay to get talking
everyone's quiet when the record ends
everyone's quiet when the record ends

-joan of arc

bottle up and explode!

classes start today. An hour and twenty minutes until class numero uno, and I sit here killing time, waiting until I get word from my bank or have to leave to get to class.

last night I chopped off a lot of hair and shaved and took a needle in the hay picture of myself and decided to do something. Rushdie got me thinking about the mutability of people and of the self. There's no reason not to be better. Not for the world or for anyone in particular, but for one's self. There are things everyone feels are inadequate about themselves and what reason is there not to try and make them adequate? Except laziness or fear.

When I hit the brick wall of my own limitations, I'll hit it hard because I'm too young and full of myself to ever see it coming. There's nothing I can't do, so why let nothing be what I do. I screen plays to write and habits to break and hearts to steal and statements to make and time to fill and pictures to take and places to run and snowballs to throw and hats to wear and songs to hear and songs to sing.

there's life to live and I'm waiting for a goddamn bank six hours behind me to send me word that my card will work so I can buy some sustenance. my world can't begin anew on an empty stomach.

MUSIC: the cure: close to me

"Aspen -

Hunter Stockton Thompson, who coined the term "gonzo journalism" to describe the unique and furiously personal approach to reportage exemplified in his 1972 book "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas," died Sunday night of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at his Woody Creek home. He was 67, family members said.",1413,36~53~2723492,00.html

Sunday, February 20, 2005

words like violence

break the silence come crashing in into my little world painful to me peirce right through me can't you understand?

when communication is overflowing words are very unnecessary, but even if they can only do harm they're better than nothing.

enjoy the silence.

a little culture

"Later the wind died and a cloudreef rimmed in pale rose hung low and still. I was on a dirt road now, spectacularly lost, and I stopped the car and got out and scanned the landscape, feeling pretty dumb, and I thought I saw some funk holes out among the yucca - old concrete bunkers from a mining operation or military test site. It would be dark in forty-five minutes. I had a quarter tank of gas, half a can of iced tea, nothing to eat, no warm clothes, a map that scanted the details.
I would drink my tea and die."

-Don Delillo. Underworld

"Happiness, now, that's something else again. Happiness is human, not divine, and the pursuit of happiness is what we might call love. This love, earthly love, is a truce between metamorphs, a temporary agreement not to shape-shift while kissing or holding hands. Love is a beach towel spread over shifting sands. Love is intimate democracy, a compact that insists on renewals, and you can be voted out overnight, however big your majority. It's fragile, precarious, and it's all we can have while remaining free... All treaties can be broken, all promises end up as lies. Sign nothing, make no promises. Make a provisional reconciliation, a fragile peace. If you're lucky it might last five days; or fifty years."

-Salman Rushdie. The Ground Beneath Her Feet.

"Twenty-five seconds to live and I'm falling down
There the darling goes, magnetics that are pulling her down
Twenty-five seconds to live and I'm waving high
All this white's a thrill
Turning just to give us the sign
And what I never had were pictures passing by
Forces that make your way down
And what I had between the things I never tried
Was you reaching out in hopes that you could grab
Forces that make your way down
I'd say that's better 'cause at least I know you tried
At least I know you tried
Twenty-five seconds to live and I'm falling down
There the darling goes, whipping out her funeral song
Twenty-five seconds to live and I'm waving high
Now he cuts to go, deciding just to trade it all in
And what I never had were pictures flashing by
Forces that make your way down
But what I had between the things I never tried
Was you reaching out in hopes to hold your hand
Forces that make your way down
I'd say I'm better 'cause I lived before I died
At least I know you tried."

-Mates of State. Parachutes (funeral song).

MUSIC: american football: but the regrets are killing me

all I can smell

is perfume through my head cold which suggest that there is far too much in the air here at the lab.

Last night I was having a beer at ye olde yellow bar and there was a band playing. We couldn't really hear them. They were in the other room. All of a sudden, a door opened or the fates conspired against us and we could hear, as if it were right beside us, "in your he-ead! in your he-e-e-ead! Zombie! Zombie! etc..."

Double take. Eye contact. raucous laughter erupts.

The Czechs give us dirty looks.

God bless yahoo for having launchcast. I feel rather foolish for having just figured it out, but hot damn is it nice.

So classes start up tomorrow and it looks like I'll be taking classes three afternoons a week. It won't be that much of an adjustment, but at least there will be some purpose to my wandering existance beyond updating this thing and making sure I get some kind of food in me.

I feel obligated to point out that launchcast does have it's flaws. It has surmised that the song I want to hear right now more than any other is Head over Heels by Tears for Fears. Of course it follows it up with the unicorns, so that's nice.

trying to get an actual picture up for my profile shot. good luck. to me.

MUSIC: peter gabriel: sledgehammer

Saturday, February 19, 2005


All right, so here's some people. czech 'em out. heh heh.



If I left anyone out, say the word. If anyone objects to being here, do likewise. And I'm really sorry about that Czech pun.


MUSIC: jump little children: cathedrals (thanks T.)

Friday, February 18, 2005

true zero hook

try to tell you 'bout a thing I heard
try to tell you, but
I couldn't speak a word

and it's not your style
to sit around and wait a while

and you've never done anything wrong
and you act so innocent
and your feet don't point the same way

can you turn yourself inside out
when you sit and pout?

you're breaking something
but it's not my heart
you can call it angry art (?)

and you've never done anything wrong
and you act so innocent
but your feet don't point the same way

when I hold you in my arms
I can't stop trembling

and you've never done anything wrong
worth remembering

and it's not my heart
and it's not my heart
and it's not my heart

and you've never done anything wrong
and you act so innocent
but your feet
don't point the same way

and it's not my heart

you should see yourself the way I do
true zero hook
you should see yourself
a zero hook
the wayI do

see yourself the way I do
the way I do
the way I do
see yourself
I see myself

So this is a song by Small 23 that I loved in 1994 and looked up. I found the video and watched it a million times and tried to transcribe lyrics and type them in the most pseudopoetic ee cummings style I could muster. mission accomplished.

maybe there's a line that's been in the back of my head lately... there must be some explanation as I haven't thought of this song in nearly a decade.

MUSIC: small 23: true zero hook

You said, "young man, I do believe you're dying."

Today the disease has abated enough to allow a voyage from the dorms and out into town. Chinese food in the restaurant where they know us and know we don't speak their language.

These posts, I know, grow to be more and more cryptic. It's more like hinting at how I feel than telling what's going on, and I'll try to do better.

Andrew's buddy Pat was here this week and I was sick the whole time. Jesse and I nursed awful distresses that couldn't decide whether to be fevers or colds for two days. Still doing it, in fact. Reading the ground beneath her feet. Watched Moon of the Wolf and Young Frankenstein.

Puzzled as to why I capitalized the shitty TV movie I watched and not the Salman Rushdie novel I'm reading.

I published something here that was a mistake. at the end of the paragraph I wrote "this is a mistake." I was right, so I hope it's gone.

MUSIC: elvis costello: blood and chocolate (album)

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

am I bored a little? maybe

but I've a head cold and I'm killing time in the lab and I'm going to try to remember an old poem of mine I used to open shows with.

Why? well, maybe I'm bored. (on cold medicine, subtlety is the name of the game)

I swear I saw a skulking shadow systematic, slow
glowing green by grecian grocery gleaming great as geats grow.
Known to numb the noble neophyte now next to no one's net
and I bet because blue boy brought new-bought beer by she's beset.

Jet plane journey - jump to juxtapose Juliana's just July
flying fearful fast, full-forward, feast on fading fifteen fries -
sighing silently sans subterfuge should something seem to say,
weighing word to word with wonder, 'what would weave her wood to clay?'

so that's that.

MUSIC: hum: suicide machines


You are Napoleon Dyanamite and a buttload of gangs
are trying to recruit you.

Which Napoleon Dynamite character are you?
brought to you by

caving in

to the chain-letteresque nature of the internet, I now have no choice but to follow instructions. Having responded to this on another blog, I now must post it.

narcissism, take 82.Post a memory of me.It can be anything you want, it can be good or bad, just so long as it happened.Then post this to your journal. See what people remember about you...

MUSIC: pedro the lion: breadwinner you

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

hi girl i raelly for one hot blond cheek

I have no idea what that means, but when I clicked in the title box this is the most amusing thing that it tried to fill in.

"regrets are worthless. They misconstrue the past in sight and sound..."

MUSIC: midtown: no place feels like home

Monday, February 14, 2005

My inadverdant mutant power

is to control the weather. Apparently. I only make it worse, though, and I have no control over it except that it's generally better when I'm indoors. Let me 'splain.

So Thursday I got a ticket to Prague at the bus station. It was raining a little that day. No big deal. My fellow photolab monitor and all around awesome chicka Traci was coming into the Czech republic for the first time on Friday, and I was catching a six am bus to try to meet her train. That meant getting up at four forty five on Friday. It was, of course, raining.

I got to Prague late and wandered about, looking for the train station (there are four, I think) where she would be arriving. I found it and walked around hoping she would spot me for many hours. Finally I got frustrated and went to an internet cafe to see if there was any missives I'd not received. Indeed there were, and she would be arriving in ten minutes. I met her at the platform. It was raining.

We were accosted, so to speak, by an old lady who offered us a two bed room a block from Wenceslas square for 25 euro. Sounded good. We followed her, and it was raining. She led us as labarynthine-ly as possible through Prague until we reached a room with two huge beds, five calendars from the wrong year, two pictures of Jesus, one Mary, one crucifix, and a German bible. Done and done.

We walked. A lot. Prague is lovely. Simply stunning. Beer and Goulash. Pictures. It rained. I had slept for an hour. She may as well not have slept at all, being as she had been on a train since before midnight. We were beat. We made it to Charles bridge and looked at it and it rained more. We needed a nap.

Post nap was team America, world police and then beer and McDonald's and more sleep.

We were really exhausted. It was raining in the morning. The restaurant we went to had dinosaur on the menu but neither of us would order it. I got what appears to have been catfood. c'est la vie. We had to loiter in the Hlavni Nadrazi for quite some time, and then we shared a compartment with a one-armed man. It was him, and I was framed.

We arrived at Brno to witness a ground covered with slush, near-freezing rain falling. We ate huge pizzas. We bought some beer. We caught a bus home. The bus dropped us off two blocks up hill from my dorm. We slid down very cautiously. It was still raining. Traci made a fine impression on my posse of ex-pat two-term americans and everyone else she met. We went to the yellow bar and drank and saw a polka-esque band and had no trouble getting her back inside the dorm.

We slept frightfully little given that we had to be up by six forty five and also given the amount of alcohol we'd consumed. The ground was a sheet of ice as we went to the train station, and i can't say I was glad to see her go. A few minutes before her train arrived, it started raining. A lot. I walked back through the rain.

I got home and showered and went to sleep. as I looked out side at where i had just been rained on, the sky was blue. my powers began to dawn on me. I got up about three pm (slept since nine) and eventually walked with Andrew to the yellow bar. It was sunny as we put on our coats.

We walked ten steps. It began to snow.

Any desperate superhero organizations send proposals to Candy Adams at Entertainment 4 every 1 or post a comment.

MUSIC: (in my head) smashing pumpkins: farewell and goodnight.

Monday, February 07, 2005

It has begun

And no that's not just a mortal kombat reference. What I mean is that the semester has begun. I suppose technically it doesn't begin until the 21 which is two weeks from now, but the social bit has begun.

New people are pouring in from all over the world. Finns and Americans a-plenty. So what's been going on?

My fellow Western Carolinian Traci has arrived in Gronigen and I should be getting a visit shortly. The wonders of Czech beer and nightmare tram rides to museums and tea shops will be brought fully to bear.

I've seen many a movie this past week, and it was good. Czechs make buttered, cheesed, and bacon flavored popcorn. Weirdos. I tried to see Team America, but it was sold out and won't be opening anywhere else in town for another week. Sideways is spectacular. Alexander is a sad trainwreck of a movie.

Here's where maybe I should be ashamed but am not. I saw Harold and Kumar go to White Castle. First of all, it's really, really funny. Funniest thing I've seen a theatre since Old School. Secondly, the czech title translates as "we'll smoke, we'll see," because the czech translation of White Castle is also the czech name for Belgrade. Harold and Kumar go to war-torn Yugoslavia just doesn't have the same ring to it, eh? Finally, I will inform you of the many Neil Patrick Harris references in the film. Of course, many Doogie Houser jokes ensue, but the czech republic did not get Doogie, so the translation makes all the Doogie jokes into Starship Troopers jokes. Or as it's called over here, "Infantry of the Stars."

So that's it, I think. Watched most of the superbowl, but it was shown on an Irish channel. We got the game, but instead of the cool comercials, we got to see repeated ads for a local (in Ireland) spa store called Polar Spa. C'est la vie.

MUSIC: Elvis Costello and Tom Waits: I forgot more than you'll ever know (live)