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Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Ronnie Cutrone: I loved Jim Morrison dearly, but Jim was not fun to go out with. I hung out with him every night for just about a year, and Jim would go out, lean up against a bar, order eight screwdrivers, put down six Tuinals on the bar, drink two or three screwdrivers, take two Tuinals, then he'd have to pee, but he couldn't leave the other five screwdrivers, so he'd take his dick out and pee, and some girl would come up and blow his dick, and then he'd finish the other five screwdrivers and then he'd finish up the other four Tuinals, and then he'd pee in his pants, and then Eric Emerson and I would take him home.

That was a typical night out with Jim.
(Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain, Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk, 31)

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Stardust Memories

"A lot of people have accused you of being narcissistic."

"No, I know people think that I'm egotistical and narcissistic, but it's not true. I, as a matter of fact, if I did identify with a Greek mythological character, it would not be Narcissus."

"Who would be?"


Friday, August 25, 2006

John has always been my dad's favorite, and I think that's what led me to be a strict John man myself. Through my experience learning about and listening to The Beatles, I've been in a number of debates with Paul-, George-, and even Ringo-lovers, but I always secretly felt those people were either stupid or just didn't know what they were talking about. Sure, Paul may be cuter, but John is an artist.

I was in Waterloo Records with Lan a few years ago when Paul McCartney's "Silly Love Songs" came on.

"When I hear this," Lan said, "it makes me wonder how anyone could ever wonder who the real genius in The Beatles was. I mean, if you just listen to everything each of them did after the band broke up, it's pretty clear that Paul obviously has a gift for melody, but is just kind of a sappy romantic at heart, and John is just a genius."

I recently read John's 1971 Rolling Stone interview with Jann Werner, and found what I think is an interesting coincidence:
John:I learned lots from Paul and George, in many ways, but they learned a damned sight lot from me--they learned a fucking lot from me. It's like George Martin, or anybody: Just come back in twenty years' time and see what we're doing, and see who's doing what--don't put me--don't mark my papers like I'm top of the math class or did I come in Number One in English Language, because I never did. Just assess me on what I am and what comes out of me mouth, and what me work is. . . .
Paul's career is obviously the more successful--he's the wealthiest man in England--but there's no doubt to me that Plastic Ono Band, Imagine, and to a lesser extent Mind Games, stand out over anything Paul did alone during or after The Beatles. Here's to my dad, for raising me right.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

"It's like your favorite nightclub. But with rental shoes."

Bowling is a lot of things--fun, ironic, trashy, an excuse to quote The Big Lebowski--but it certainly isn't sexy, hip, or sophisticated.

The 300 Bowling chain is trying to change all that, and they've got the sleazy web design and outrageous ad copy to prove it:
Bowling as you’ve known it has changed forever. Now, it’s all grown up. It got a high-paying job. Bought a hip, modern hangout and a new wardrobe to match. Installed a killer sound system, a sleek bar and a top-of-the-line grill to serve its friends. Take a virtual tour. Then, make a date with 300—where the experience is strikingly different.
Every image in the flash page contains everything their new image needs: (1) a bowling ball (2) bowling shoes (these represent bowling) or (3) a martini (this represents urban sophistication). Finally, a bowling alley made for me--a wealthy cokehead with a deep love of bowling.

Where have the sticky floors and balding fat guys gone?

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Buñuel, Bouquet, Amour

I've become obsessed lately with making my own salsa. Fresh jalapeños, fresh onion, fresh cilantro--the result is a better-tasting salsa than any other I've had, but that could be the pride of the chef talking.

It was with a fresh batch of salsa and a new bag of corn chips that I sat down to watch Luis Buñuel's 1977 film Cet obscur objet du désir two nights ago. The movie is basically about a man who becomes madly infatuated with a young woman, Conchita, who loves him, but refuses to "give herself" to him. Interestingly, Buñuel had two different actresses play the role of Conchita. One of those actresses was Carole Bouquet, who was devastatingly aloof and sexy.

I'll admit it. About halfway through the movie, I found myself so turned on by Bouquet's portrayal of Conchita that I paused the movie, went into my bedroom, and masturbated. Having completed that, I returned to the couch and put the movie back on. It was only a second later that I noticed it.

At first it was like a tingling itch. I absentmindedly scratched myself, but it didn't help. A few moments later I was howling and tearing my shorts off, desperately trying to figure out why my genitals felt like they had been slathered in Ben Gay. I quickly stripped, ran to the shower, and turned the water on cold, hoping to ease the pain. It was in the midst of this action that I realized--the jalapeños. The chipotle. Of course.

If you weren't already aware of it, Texas is hot in the summertime. So hot in fact that taking a legitimately cold shower isn't always possible--the heat makes the pipes so warm that even water from the cold tap comes out at about 90 degrees. The warm water wasn't doing much to ease the burning, so I skittered to the kitchen and put some ice in a plastic bag. After drying off, I put my shorts back on, rested the bag of ice in my shorts, and finished the movie. The ice served more than one purpose--any urge to head to my bedroom again was quickly stifled. Great movie, by the way.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

From Commentary magazine:
Some friendships die on their own, of simple inanition, having been quietly allowed to lapse by the unacknowledged agreement of both parties. Others break down because time has altered old friends, given them different interests, values, points of view. In still others, only one party works at the friendship, while the other belongs to what Truman Capote called (in a letter to the critic Newton Arvin, his ex-lover) “some odd psychological type . . . that only writes when he is written to.” And then of course there are the friendships that end when one friend betrays or is felt to betray the other, or fails to come through in a crisis, or finds himself violently disputing the other on matters of profoundest principle.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Here in Austin, most people know that the Alamo Drafthouse is the best beer-serving movie theater in town. Their status was recently upgraded to "approved by sarcastic hipsters" when they proposed their "Blanks on a Blank" film competition, in which people would make a short preview parodying the concept of Snakes on a Plane.

Interesting thing, an acquaintance of mine actually won the contest with some friends of his with their entry: Raccoons on a Space Shuttle. Check it out.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Joe Lieberman is a picture of narcissistic greed

Connecticut senator Joe Lieberman lost in the primary to be re-elected to the Senate on Tuesday. It was a surprise for some, but not for others. Lieberman's opponent, Ned Lamont, has been considered a more liberal democrat, and has played on Lieberman's conservatism and his support for the war and the president, which has been apparently turning off some Nutmeggers.

But Lieberman was-- and is, he's staying in the race as an independent--really running against himself. On Thursday, after the news of the foiled terrorist plot in London, Lieberman saw an opportunity and took it: "If we just pick up like Ned Lamont wants us to do, get out by a date certain, it will be taken as a tremendous victory by the same people who wanted to blow up these planes in this plot hatched in England. It will strengthen them and they will strike again." A willingness to use terrorist attacks as political fodder shows a willingness to drop to the lowest levels of political manipulation. It's not just unappealing, it's disheartening.

There may be no current politician more narcissistic than Joe Lieberman. From his self-congratulatory views on video games, to his full-fledged support of the Bush administration's foreign policy (and it's not unreciprocated; it's rumored that Karl Rove offered the administration's support), to his hypocritical rhetoric, this is a man who has no problem taking advantage of any political opportunity no matter what the cost. His continuing to run as an independent is just the most recent display of his selfishness.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

"My best friend just told me he's gay," she said. "But he did it in a very roundabout way. He didn't just say it flat out."

"Was he like 'Let's play a game. You guess my sexual orientation, and I'll tell you if you're hot or cold'"?

"Uh, no."

"Oh," I said. "Well, how do you feel about it?"

"I dunno. I really did think I would marry him for a long time. I guess that dream is gone."

"Maybe it can still happen if you end up a lonely spinster, and he's forced to submit to his parents' conventional ways, like some sort of sad movie. Only, if you do that, would you wait until the future so I could write a science fiction novel about it?"

"You never listen to me."
"I dropped my ice-cream cone on the ground the other day," SI said. "I was like 'Thanks, God.' "

"Well," I said, "just remember that when you're pointing one finger up at God, you're pointing three fingers back at yourself. And the Devil, I guess."
I just watched the first four minutes of The Boondock Saints.

I know some people love it, and that overwhelming positive feedback was why I checked it out in the first place. It certainly wasn't because of the barrage of positive reviews--neither Roger Ebert, nor The New York Times, nor the New Yorker has reviewed this movie.

All I know is that I feel like I have an opportunity to go back in time and un-watch Garden State--another overrated movie from a first-time director--and I'm going to take it.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Mighty Mighty Long Time

Sandra dumped me for pretty straightforward reasons, albeit in a roundabout way.

She was kind of a spoiled brat. She grew up rich, she dressed better than me, she was very pretty, and she was a bitch. She wanted things that I just couldn't afford to buy her, and when she dumped me to go out with Richie Hollandaise, the gooniest rich kid in town, it became pretty clear what her priorities were--and they weren't a man who is poor in money but rich in giant penis.

I ran into her a few weeks ago on the way to a restaurant with Joey Honey. We were walking past the Olive Garden toward a much more expensive restaurant when I saw her out of the corner of my eye, looking older, heavier, and rattier than I remembered her. She sat alone looking worried at a table on the patio, which was recently added in a failed attempt to class up the place.

"Oh, shit," I muttered.

"Zane? ZANE! Is that you?"

I tried to turn away, but she had already seen me.

"Is it you? I can't believe this? How weird! It's been such a long time!"

"Mighty long time♪," I agreed. Boy did she look haggard.

"I mean, I didn't think you'd show up! I've been waiting for an hour, and I thought I'd be eating breadsticks and salad alone!"


"You're here to meet me, right? Sandra, from the online dating site?"

"Actually, we're just on the way to eat . . . somewhere else. It's just fortuitous is all."

"You're right, it is lucky," she winked. "Would you like to sit down?"

"We can't, really," I said.

Her face fell, and her lower lip quivered. Honey averted his eyes and toed the ground, his hands shoved in his pockets.

"Well call me sometime real soon!" she said, standing up.

"Yeah . . . I'll do that."

I moved to walk away, and she approached me with her arms open for a hug. As she leaned in, I grimaced. She smelled like a cat had thrown up on her, and she had then tried to overpower the accident with a bucket of lavender. I wretched a little and gently but firmly pushed her away. Then I turned around and continued to the restaurant. Hopefully they would have a washroom attendant to scrub this smell off me.

"That wasn't--" Honey began.


"That bitch," he said. "Why didn't you say anything? After the way she dumped you?"

I opened my mouth but I didn't really have an answer. I thought about it. Why hadn't I said anything? Then I realized--what would be the point? It'd be like kicking a one-legged dog who bit you when it was a puppy. Or punching out the bully who later turned into a quadrapelegic after breaking his back in a boogie-boarding accident.

"I guess sometimes people get what they deserve on their own. You know what they say--'Living well is the best revenge.' "

By the time we got to the restaurant, I was starving.

"What can I get for you sir?" the waiter asked.

Honey answered for me. "Get him the biggest, most expensive steak you have. Medium rare."

I nodded. "Sounds good."

Monday, August 07, 2006

Links on a blog

It would be unfair of me to keep this to myself.

The geniuses in the marketing department for the movie Snakes on a Plane have developed an e-mail or telephone tool that allows you to create and send personalized messages from Samuel L. Jackson. Check it out.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Scenes from a wedding

My cousin got married this weekend. His five-year-old son, from a previous marriage, asked him what they were doing.

"We're having a wedding. Daddy and Mommy K are getting married."

"Is mommy coming?"

"Well, no. She was at the first wedding."

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Went to see the Austin premier of Little Miss Sunshine last night with Lan, TW, SYR, and HA. While we were waiting in the theater, two women sat down in the two remaining seats to my right. After a few minutes I pulled out my GRE vocabulary notecards.

"What are you studying for?" the chubby spectacled woman asked me after only a moment.

"The GRE," I answered.

"What do you want to study?"

"American studies."

"Got a plan B?"

Then she went on an unexpected lecture about graduate school, the pros and cons, statistics, and warned that I definitely needed a backup plan.

"Thanks for the advice," I said.

"I'm sort of a sesquipedalian myself," she interrupted. She looked at me as she said the word, checking to see if I knew what it meant.

"Ah," I said.

She seemed to be prompting me to run through each word to see if she knew it. Feeling uncomfortable, I did. She knew most of them. Upon seeing the definition to one she didn't know ("atavism"), she went on a brief monologue about the root of the word (which was mistaken on).

"Good job," I said. "A true sesquipedalian."

"Oh, you know that word? My mom taught it to me in second grade."

"And what do you teach?" HA asked, unable to take it anymore.

"Textiles and apparel," she said.

Then the movie came on.