Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Vermont on Fire

Me and My mom were driving merrily about Hanover, Lime and Etna NH. As we gazed at the brightly colored dead leaves still clinging to many of trees up here, my mom noticed 3 jet streams above us. She loves those, so we followed them, just as she commented on one particular stream which seemed to spiral downward, we noticed a very, very large cloud of smoke billowing out toward the sun. i thought the plane had crashed. So we began to drive toward the beast of a cloud. It turned yellow and white as it floated away from itself , but whatever the source, it continued to belch brown and black ugly puffs into the clear autumn sky. it was totally hot. So we followed it, zigzagging about the state until Mom narrowed it down to the West Lebanon area or White River Junction, Vermont. And dude, she totally nailed it. as we took the lil' deadly bridge into White River from West Lebanon, the smoke monster in all its magnificent glory reared to its full height and rolled its eyes back in its head. a guy on the bridge held his cell phone up to it, as though to say,"Take that, Smoke Monster, feel the radiation from my cell phone!!!" OK, maybe he just wanted to take a picture. anyway, upon seeing him, i did say,"Hey guy! good plan!" and i took out my phone and took these pictures:So the smoke monster was later discovered to be a Tire Barn by the railroad tracks down the bank from 25,000 gifts. God i love it here.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

At Last The Trees

Yes, i must've died and now move backward to make up for lost time...i spent a week and heaven almost and now, though i sit weeks later listening to Clinic circus music-ever creepier as she grows-in a different but shockingly similar (albeit slightly more cumbersome) adulthood, i really, really wanted to share this haven for my lonely brain and my "wish i were a writer" soul....(HOLY GAWD, just started listening to Clark's "Turning Dragon"...HOLY HOLY Holy...) So i house-sat, alright? i house-sat for my friend the bear who'd jaunted off to Provincetown to a festival of bear-ish proportions...they needed someone to collect their mail and water their numerous plants...i needed a place in the middle of nowhere on top of a mountain to run away to...course, when does one not need this? almost an hour out of my way, i rearranged my work schedule so i could get every bit of everything i needed from this Vermont wonderland.

This is the entrance to one side of the walkway to their expansive woodland property, i love it because it looks strikingly similar to the entrance to the Pet Semetary (I can pick about 10..mmm...maybe 12 horror movies out from every corner of their land). I got there around 3:00 pm on a Sunday afternoon...so quiet and hazy, it had rained and i HAD to walk down these shaded paths of doom...
Only a few feet beyond the entrance, there are two signs warning you to turn back, as the paths become muddled and overgrown, but your's truely could not resist...plus, you could totally still see the paths so it wasn't that scary.

peeling birches and silent birds, i waited for some pitter patter of some murderous foot steps to bring their body to wrap its hands around my throat...nah, it'd have to be a stabbing implement...definately more of a Jason or a Michael.

Then, if you've followed me, you come upon this mountainside where all the trees seem to have been mowed down but the land remains undeveloped, and up on the other side, there's a neighbor! a neighbor with dogs who yipped unnecessarily in my direction, so after stealing this shot i ran. i ran back up toward the other entrance to the Pet Semetary, which, had it been there, was most likely where the dogs barked-angry because "dead is better" (>.<)
Then i stumbled upon this...fire pit? That's what the Bear claims, though i suspect he may've been skirting some truths about this place. Crystals in the fire and various stone arrangements plus a whole shelf in the library dedicated to witch craft would lead one to suspect...many things...mu-wa-ah-ah-aaaaaah.....But it freaked me right out when i found it, as i had been introduced to it before but had forgotten its existence.The wall dividing two towns that's been there for about a century is underneath this fallen tree.

the wall again, leading up and out of the wilderness.

This is the Pet Semetary entrance at sunset. nice, eh?

The view from their front porch.

This is the view OF their front porch FROM their front porch, i just couldn't stop taking those ever-so-difficult-to-make-beautiful sunset photos! forgive me! These photos were all taken different days. the first night i spent watching "The Mist" (which is rather horrible-as any horror fan would know before watching) and looking out into the blackness beyond, listening through the thunder for coyotes but there were none. BUT, i did see these guys DO IT:

They hung leisurely across the porch roof from the doorway, watching me all day, they didn't move at all till dark...then oh yes, did they ever move. and a third one appeared to try and fight for the already impregnated female. I watched the spiders in the lightening and thunder while they had sex and threatened each other with their front legs, doing that cool spider thing where they're all like, "Yeah boy, you wanna piece of me? Whaaah? NO?!! You want a piece of my WOMAN? PSHUH?!! whatever you, jerkie, c'mon, let's go!" but then they didn't kill each other, as all 3 were alive and spunky the next morning...God it was gross. Shortly after the bears returned home, they put a permanent end to my spider soap opera, stating that the creatures were "Too big and gross to live". i would have to agree.

Here is a far less disgusting friend i made. He ran into my foot and looked up at me, then ran under the grill in terror as he realized i am not a tree, but then he popped out in case i wanted to take his picture. no seriously, he sat there like that for like a minute while i fumbled with my camera.

this is just a satellite, on top of one of 3 old, creepy barns i found to be wondrous.

And then i swam in the large, inflatable pool for hours and went home, to my mini Vermont sanctuary, which is trying desperately to compare with this monster of perfection in South Royalton. It was a monumental experience, just pretending i lived there and sleeping in the cold, cold basement, filled with volumes of beat poets, classic Sci-Fi and Wicca...plus every Steven King novel ever...yeah, totally gay, but SO HOT...so spooky and so fiendishly inspiring...yet here i sit, now listening to the hum in my right ear...

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

She & Him

Oh, i don't even think i'm qualified enough to write about the colossal greatness that is contained within this CD. 'She & him' is Zooey Deschanel and indie singer/songwriter superstar M. Ward. I would normally never be caught dead buying something associated with something so opposite of everything i believe i stand for (M. Ward is extraordinarily talented, he is, i believe this and i respect him, however i find most of his work to be excruciatingly boring and it deeply offends my new pop sensibilities)...but...they're singing 50's and 60's pop songs!!! now you can understand why i'm so in love. instantly. You know Zooey has an awesome old-school vocal set from her singing in 'Elf', she sounds a little like Judy Garland...in that film. Here, it appears Ms. Deschanel has transformed (finally, we got one!)into one worthy of being compared to the great and powerful, Patsy Cline. Her voice coupled with the style of music, the connection is unmistakable and one can only assume Deschanel is a fan and M. Ward must be too. But don't get me wrong, it doesn't sound like they worked hard to make it sound exactly like Patsy Cline (and it doesn't sound exactly like her), because there's beauty and real love behind this collection of tracks and also, think of the people who made it. If it was simply made to sound like Patsy Cline to sell records, it would be painfully obvious, and probably painfully horrible too.

This is the first english language CD i've bought in years that i needed to hear the whole way through, from the first note on. It blows Wilco's last effort out of the water...which is quite a thing for me to say, i know. But let's face it, 'Sky Blue Sky' is recycled. We've heard it all before, which for me, was a tremendous let down where Wilco is concerned. But since 'She & Him' has never done this before, the fact that a lot of the songs are covers* doesn't matter at all, in fact it breathes even more nostalgic sepia toned exuberance into the first few numbers, all originals penned by Zooey Deschanel. According to an interview i read in Nylon, which is how i found out about this glorious record, Zooey has been hoarding songs for years, casually glancing about, hoping to find the right someone to help her bring them to be. And amazingly enough, M. Ward lends his superior musical skills brilliantly to Zooey's classic pop dreams. Maybe i need to listen to more of his stuff, eh?

I brought up Wilco because a lot of 'She & Him' makes me think of various Wilco pop/country songs and it also makes me hope against hope that Jeff Tweedy will hear Zooey sing and think "hmmmm, maybe i should sing with her..." Dear GOD, i'd, like, totally die, than get up and listen to it again, cry a little, then die again. Anyway, i am so dazzled and needed to write about this right away, but now i have to go listen to it as much as possible and memorize all the lyrics and dream about hoop skirts and big bows, set to an acoustic guitar twang...

*no they're not! sorry, my excitement rendered me incapable of doing the proper research before writing this, like reading the liner notes, and figuring out that actually, all but 2 of the songs are by Zooey Deschanel. the sound is just so authentic, i thought they must be covers. but nope, Zooey is just more amazing than i already thought.

Monday, April 28, 2008


I got to Cambridge Town yesterday at around 2:30. This is what you can see of the store till the sleep depraved, hungry and heartbroken (or all of the above!) finish gutting the poor, doomed beast on Wednesday.

I worked in this store for 6 years and helped out whenever i could (mostly by making Scott tons of distracting Japanese DVD's) afterward. Scott and i worked together nearly every day for 6 years, when i finally left Boston, i thought the separation might kill me. Various other CD Spins kids (the store was CD Spins first) helped out here and there, especially Sophia, who has recently gotten many honorable mentions here in the Dome. I met the 'Squee' here as well, and we became secret friends after i finished hating the world and taking it out on her! OOPS!

this is the Logo you would see when you walk in and look up and straight ahead.

Dudes! This is the wall where the DVD racks used to be! and the lonely, stripped wall straight ahead is... *chokes back sobs*....THE WALL OF QUALITY!!!!!

That's the main RPS wall before Dawn took the drill to it.

These are the stairs were we all consumed many delicious Lee's lunches. Remember how you could curl up on the top step and set up your lunch like a picnic and watch the goings on below with your sybjects completely unaware?

Above are the remains of those wretched drawers that you always wanted to just pull off their runners once and for all...well, they're gone now, being used as suitcases for worthwhile product.

And what we all know was the best part of that store, the hilarious notes we wrote and/or faxed to each other captured the spirit of the place better than anything else. and yes, i took them ALL. We lost nothing, people, except the physical location. But don't worry, i'm sure we'll haunt the new tenants for a long time still. Scott and I were discussing how even years down the line, the next business to move in (a Mexican shop for Mexicans) will still suffer questions and mind boggling inquiries like : "Hey! I remember when there was a record store here!" and "Did you know this place used to be a record store?" and then they'll stand and nod their head for a while and talk mostly to themselves about how they haven't been in the area for years but how they used to shop at the record store all the time...and the clerk will stand there and smile and nod and act like she/he hasn't heard this statement a million times already and then the 'customer' will wish the clerk a nice day and leave without buying anything. *SIGH* Cambridge.

My Anger Management chart from Scott (it really worked!), the list of jerks and some classic photos and post-its. who can forget the celebritiy cameos?

ok, so it's mostly Xtina, but what can i say? i love her. besides, there was also British Lou Barlow, Diego Luna, Shakira, Tori Amos, the guy from Versus, Johnny Depp, Spider Man, Mr. Ed, Jimmy Fallon...

SO like, this is incredibly long but, ya know, i did try to fit 6 years (considerably longer for Scott) worth of life altering memories into one blog. so just accept that it's the longest one EVER and don't even read it. just look at the pictures and wish you were there. Scott and i made a bunch of trips to the dumpster in the alley, to throw away mountains unspeakable crap (CD's) and as the dumpster crushed them, the cases snapping and crunching, i said (because it was just so darn appropriate) "Scott, that's the sounds of our hearts breaking..."

Saturday, April 26, 2008

So There It Goes

GAH! GAAAAAAAAAH!! Did i mention...Gah? OK, in reference to the last bit of sillyness, Kumi was actually making a joke at her manager's expense and many people (kids, mostly, i hope) defending her seem to think this 'dried up fluids' thing is a 'scientific fact', which makes me sad. ANYWAY, just wanted to clarify in print (but she still got temporarilly banished from the pop star kingdom and lost her ad campaigns with Visee Cosmetics and almost had her tour cancelled).

OK!! i have returneth from 'The Project', which, by grand finale, had converted 2 of 3 non-believers. The professor liked it a lot (even the end part which i found to be a little heart wrenching because in Nagano, the joy kind of morphed into the sorrow of impending doom and it shows with the music i picked.) For those of you who don't know what i'm talking about, when i went to Japan last summer, the last half of the trip was spent in Nagano, meeting my friend's family and being blessed by the High Priestess of a Buddhist Temple (Zenko-Ji). And It was overwhelmingly awesome and everything, but because it was so awesome, because everything about Japan was so amazing, i was a miserable little lump upon my return to the states, so like, re-making my trip, as it were, brought back all the good and not so good memories. It was like leaving my friends and Japan all over again.

ok, but the very end of it came out way funny, so it leaves you light hearted. i hope. SO, 3 months i worked endlessly on 'The Project' (which, incidently, i named 'Lines, Wires and Love' after the dorky little quip on the side of this blog) and now it's done and i can write and draw again and yeah, i think my fluids are dried up (>.<)

i can't draw and HAVE to draw because i have other projects! 2 of them, one is a gift and one is an assignment (I'm sorry Sophia, sooooooon!!). Hopefully the misery of having to bid farewell to the only constant in my life in Boston this weekend will bring about some ability. I'm actually hoping just thinking about it will make the artistic gears turn this evening at work. I did this one during the project too, thinking of impending projects, i don't know if you'll be able to see, but she's picking jelly beans off a cupcake...SOPHIA!!! On Church St. is closing its doors for good. On Church St. was the safe haven where i worked, and just about lived, i spent so much time there. It was CD Spins before my dear friend and at one point, my employee, decided to buy it when it went up for sale. Then he became my boss and all heck broke loose. He got me into Japan. it's entirely his fault. how can i ever thank him enough? i wouldn't be who i am today without that place and everything that happened inside and out. Sure, there are some horrid memories (stalkers and ex-boyfriends, junkies, drunks, thieves, horrible little gay men with little dogs and/or big bellies), but there are some really brilliantly hilarious ones as well (stalkers and ex-boyfriends, junkies, drunks, thieves, horrible little gay men with little dogs and/or big bellies). I guess it was suitable that E.P.H came in last time i was there to tell Scott what jerks we are for never buying his awesome stolen Miles Davis box sets and that he just sold them to Newbury comics and hopes they put us out of business...well, that didn't happen really, it wasn't Newbury, because no one shops there either.

But we'll let Mr. H continue to believe what he wants, whatever makes a junkie happy, you know, America? anyway, i'm saying goodbye to this big ole piece of my heart on Sunday, i get to help tear the place apart!! Hooray for destruction! then i plan to become very, very drunk. Then, i'll come back here and write about it! Yay!

Sunday, April 6, 2008


well, i've just sucked down the last drop of beer and yes, the rum is gone. BUT, i've also just finished my taxes! Hooray!! i don't have much of a point today, i'm afraid. i just found out a bit of disturbing info that may only disturb...me. here, let me tell you about it anyway! it seems that one of my beloved Japanese pop idols, Kumi Koda, has been banished from the J-POP Idol Kingdom by her own label, Avex Trax. SO the girl doesn't have much going on upstairs, she still writes super pop songs and she's a great singer, dancer and what a hot piece of...OK, maybe she's a little ho-ish, but i love her anyway, don't you? you better, considering she sang ALL the songs for my FAVORITE MOVIE EVER: Cutie Honey. Anyway, so i may not like EVERYTHING she's done, but she's always got a place in my heart for attaching herself to such a perfect film. She had a little slip of the tongue that unfortunately offended apparently the entire country of Japan. She said something to the affect of "your 'fluids' dry up after the age of 35 if you're a woman...." Now, i don't know about you, but i thought to myself upon reading this; "Jeepers, that sounds like it was taken out of context since it makes no sense on its own..." Well, Kumi was talking about how she wants to have a child before too long because (insert said offensive statement here). Of course, poor Ku-Ku was just talking out her cute lil' butt about having a family, as many famous people often do...i don't think she put much thought into her statement considering it's completely inaccurate. Kumi, honey, your femme juices NEVER dry up. till you die. you got 'em.So her label and the TV networks found her statement vile and offensive to women in that 'dried up' age bracket. Kumi issued a televised as well as several written apologies, stating that the statement was taken out of context and she didn't mean any harm. Her label is halting all promotion for her newest album and you can't find ANYTHING recent about her online, her videos are NOT ON YOUTUBE!!!! Thankfully she hasn't been dropped from her label, as it is a monster major label for all the super best J-POPsters like Ayumi Hamasaki, Sifow, Hitomi, Every Little Thing & Namie Amuro, to name a few.

Anyway, i just wanted to give a holla to my girl Kumi cause she messed up, but she's been punished enough! People should know she's a young pop star who's appeal is largely based on her astounding ability to integrate various acts of copulation into every dance routine she's ever choreographed, and that intelligence isn't generally part of the equation for the perfect pop-tart. Yeah, i was going to post her video for Cutie Honey here...but now i fear Avex would hunt me down and destroy my blog...so i'm not gonna. But the thought was there, so that counts. dammit.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

"Mother of Sweating Jesus! I thought."

If there were subtitle capabilities for this thing, the subtitle would be: "Just grommet truth soul う!". The real title is from an article on the NFL love Hunter S. Thompson, called 'Fear & Loathing at the Super Bowl'. I am going back through a HST phase, mostly because i love having his voice in my head. And he's a big fan of paragraph sentences, which, as you may know, i strive to become the queen of. He writes just how he talks, it's perfection. I'd seen 'Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas' many times before, of course, but the most recent viewing (I christened my apartment with it first night i stayed here) stirred something back up and then i discovered the Rolling Stone dedicated to him after his timely/untimely death in 2005 amongst my things recovered from warehouse storage hell. I re-read a couple of the friends' accounts and decided it was about time i actually read some of this man's work. I've watched the documentaries on the Fear&Loathing DVD and read clips of his writing, but i don't even own any of his books.

In a semi-frantic love state, i sat on the floor in the book store and skimmed through biographies and a huge, beautiful coffee table book called 'GONZO' but began to pout in frustration as i realized none of this was written BY HST. So what the hell, why can't i find his own writing? I looked through the 'Modern Events' and 'Social Studies'-and CHRIST, every politician, journalist or general 'person of interest' has a goddamn book of 'Why You Should Trust Me'-then after sitting with 'GONZO', a little, frantic muttered voice said "Turn around dumbass" and i was all "WTF?" and i spun myself around and right behind me on the bottom shelf were all the works of my beloved Duke.

Well, all the ones they had anyway. I ended up with the first volume of Gonzo papers, called 'The Great Shark Hunt'. And now, though i don't have a head full of acid, i do have a head full of Hunter S. Thompson's eternally mad journalistic achievements. God, he was good. He makes reading about football entertaining. well, for the most part. Some of it i struggle with because i don't know who any of these mysterious '70's icons are. For such a pop culture fanatic, one might think that i would have at least heard of some of these people. But nope, Hunter has to teach me, but this is a task i think he is not only up to, but quite clearly, he enjoys. He loved what he did, even when he loathed what he did, when he loathed what was going on around him, which was most of the time, but really he was so fascinated by this reality that everything through his eyes becomes something. He wouldn't miss anything because Jesus, isn't that strange? Let me tell you about it, wait, let me tell me about it. Genius.

The only draw back to being wholly enthralled with HST all over again is that he's gone on to chronicle the after life, which could mean wonderful entertainment for those beings, but we're left with what he had. oh well, he had a terrific body of work and i'm gonna read ALL of it before i really start to morn this loss.

In other news, i drew this: Sachi in sweat pants and a sports bra i had in college that *GASP* i actually wore....Been looking at some old, hilarious photos. I've done some things, yes, even some things i'm not proud of, but you bet your sweet bippy i took pictures of EVERYTHING. Anyway, i thought Sachi is hot enough she can wear just the sports bra and sweats. And the multi-shoe concoction Judd Nelson wore in the breakfast club. i still love that shit. This picture is the only one, i think, to come out during this project i am still working my life away on. It's well over an hour now with 30 plus songs in the soundtrack. it's also on 2 DVD's because the quality on the first one has gone from "excellent" to "very good" to "good". But oh well, i can't cut out the text because then i can't talk about the pictures, and with the text being lengthy it needs to stay on screen long enough to read and with the timing needing to be perfect, the songs are many.

I've managed to only repeat a couple of the artists and include music that was actually there when the pictures were taken...well, you know, it was playing in my head or in one of the shops or something. Or it just goes really well with the mood, even if the lyrics don't match up. I found a Go!Go!7188 song (they're a Japanese girl punk band, now don't cringe, they're actually quite skilled, though they do scream quite a bit, but any punk band that can do the punk-rock thing AND the pop-punk thing and then some JAZZ is OK by me) called 'Ukifune' that perfectly describes my feelings inside Shinjuku, it also fits the text intro to that section PERFECTLY. OK OK, enough about 'THE PROJECT'....

The subtitle of this was taken from hitomi's blog, i'm sure that's not what she said, but Babel Fish yields such hilarious 'translations' sometimes, i couldn't resist sharing that one. As usual, i love hitomi. i finally saw and own her first attempt at a film 'Nightmare Detective', which is a Shinya Tsukamoto film, the man behind 'Tetsuo:The Iron Man'. So hitomi's already got one up on poor old Hyde and Gackt, in that she chose a film to make her debut in that was made by an established and very well respected feature film maker, where as the guy who directed 'Moon Child' had previously done...porn. So props to hitomi. So many props. My god, i was clapping at the end and yelling...and i was sitting in the dark, alone in my apartment...
But anyway, the film itself tries to play some serious mind games, and i think it accomplishes some of that successfully. But it's hard to say whether it's from the script or from the odd sort of all over the place acting of it's cast. I learned from the 'making of' that Tsukamoto likes to let actors do mostly their own thing, so that's cool for them, but then you also get very different performance styles which sets different moods in the same scene...does that make sense? It's already got a pretty confusing premise (God Bless the Japanese, it wouldn't be Japanese if it weren't somewhat confusing); There's this guy (played by Ryuhei Matsuda, whom you may have last seen being sodomized by a doomed old samurai and tugging poor Asano Tadanobu's heart strings with Beat Takashi overseeing the whole mess in the film 'Taboo') who can hop into people's dreams through a series of questions and mind melding, and he tries to help them discover the root of their nightmares. But sometimes it's horribly dangerous for him and the dreamer, of course. And then there are murders which appear to be committed inside the minds of the victims, enter hitomi as the 'socially inept' detective who wanted a taste of hands-on crime investigation so she had herself transferred to this department.
Then in the police department, of course all the top dogs are intimidated by the presence of this esteemed female super detective. But one of them tries to understand her a little, enough that she'd like to share thoughts with him but he's too dumb to understand (and dudes, this dumb detective is played SO AWESOMELY by one Masanobu Ando whom you may remember played the crazy blonde kid who kills just about everyone in Battle Royale?). So the characters themselves are pretty straight forward, and giving the actors free reign gives the characters their individuality...and i actually think it worked for hitomi instead of against her, because she just let the ever kind and patient Tsukamoto mold her virign performance because she'd just never done it before. He said he casted her because of her epic command of the audience at her shows, with very little going on in the background. Her shows don't have acrobats and dancers and big stage production, it's pretty much hitomi and her band. So he thought he might like to put forth the many sides of hitomi on the screen too.
i think it was a really good film, the dream imagery is, of course, beautiful and the story makes sense if you're willing to take the intial leap that someone can get into someone else's dreams. It's a complete story, though Tsukamoto says he's already written the 2nd and 3rd 'Nightmare Detective' stories. That's another thing about this, there's all these reminders that it's a Japanese horror film combined with music and levels (the hushed, monotones of the actors when they're awake) of a David Lynch movie crossed with a '50's detective movie. You know, it's like what's good, what's great, actually, about Brian DePalma's 'Black Dahlia'.
'Nightmare Detective' completely decimates 'Moon Child' (which, BTW, is a film Gackt wrote to top off his Moon Series of albums, about a group of misfits trying to get by in gangsta times and also, hyde's a vampire, it's super hilariously awesome, but you gotta know who they are in order to truly enjoy the experience) i'm sorry hyde and Gackt, i love you both eternally but ya'all better bow down to the unyielding powers of HITOMI: SUPER EVERYTHING!!!! Her music is the best, her films are the best. She's the best. well, OK, not the best, but better than 'Moon Child'. Which isn't really saying much. But I would recommend 'Nightmare Detective' to anyone interested in this kind of film. i think that aside from the fact that the aforementioned 'queen of my heart' is one of the stars, the movie itself is really quite good. Maybe not as good as 'Tetsuo', as i've heard that film is one of the best Japanese films out there. N.D. is NOT the best film ever by any means, nor is it the best Japanese film ever. In my book, that'll always be Cutie Honey: Warrior of Love. But 'Nightmare' is definitely worth beholding, so please go rent it RIGHT NOW. OK bye bye!