Sunday, December 31, 2000

i am on a break from my fist day as assistant manager of my theater, wed. one other manager will leave, around the same time the other manager may be fired. i think i'll cry now.

Saturday, December 30, 2000

I hate my job with a furious white-hot passion.

Friday, December 29, 2000

I'm being punished by my superiors at work for refusing to work on Christmas eve or Christmas day. This punishment consists of having all of my manager shifts taken from me for an unspecified period of time and being made to work a double shift on New Year's Eve. Neither of these punishments (unofficial punishments, by the way) are a big deal to me. Being a manager on Christmas week sucks anyway. Plus, I get paid the same no matter what position I work. And I don't have anything to to do New Year's, so whatever, I'll work it. The elements of my fall from grace that I am less ok with are the threat to my raise (which I very much deserve) and the endless hours I've been scheduled this week. These work issues have left me with less time and less energy for reflective, thoughtful posting.

So, here's a quick recap of the last week. Christmas was very nice. I'm glad I got to spend two days with my family, regardless of the outcome with my job. Lisa and Audrey are visiting. Lisa's been staying over here a lot, which is rad, because Lisa is rad. Audrey, also rad, has not been around quite as much because she's been staying with her parents. Jeff is in town and that's been pretty great, too. I'd forgotten why my moved-away friends were friends in the first place. Now I remember.

For Christmas, I got a CD burner and a new chair for my computer desk, which means my sexlessless lifestyle will remain fully and completely without sex.

Thursday, December 28, 2000

Much as I attempted to ignore Christmas, the result was that I wound up where I am now, mailing late gifts (BTW Zach - I don't know if I have a current address for you, please email to me). My dowry has been increased by two cast iron pans and a Gap gift certificate.

I gave my brother the only gift I could think of - I made a family dinner that not only contained but featured a dead animal. Steak au Poivre, made with organic peppercorns, evaporated sea water, and free-range beef, served with a sauce of leeks, fresh shiitake mushrooms, and sake. I also made an enormous pan of roasted root vegetables in an attempt to balance the whole slaughtered beast thing. Apparently I did a great job (especially for someone who grew up vegan). My sisters got a jade bracelet and a bookshop gift certificate, my parents books I want to read (Galileo's Daughter and Guns, Germs and Steel).

My birthday was also observed, and my mother, model of restraint, didn't even mention that I'm beyond "leftover wedding cake" and plummeting towards spinsterhood. I've also lost a bead off of my horseshoe barbell nipple ring, but I didn't think it would be appropriate to ask for new nipple jewelry from my parents, so I wound up with a cake pan instead.

Family:
Christmas Day was spent primarily with my siblings and I chorusing against our mother's insistence about the family photo. In order for us to take the photo where she wanted to and when, my brother had to rush through a photo shoot, a sister gave up her tickets to a football game, and I resigned myself to spending far more time than I would like to dealing with an uncle I now realize I've never liked. I thought maybe it was the alcoholism, but now that he's sober, I realize the truth is that he's always been a prat. "Just one photo" from my mother meant a roll of film and various configurations of family members. I drove my grandmother to her retirement community, while she needled my mother about how she should have left while it was still light and just walked. I realize that during WWII it would have been perfectly normal for my grandmother to walk over a mountain range, probably with a baby and a load of sweet potatoes, and gotten home without even breathing hard. That was over 50 years ago. Then she started in on my mother about my driving alone at night. My mother assured her that I would drive home, and then my mother would take the car back to my parents house, and so my grandmother started grinding her with how my mother shouldn't drive home alone at night. My grandmother's Alzheimers also meant that this was repeated every ten minutes. Fortunately, the drive was only 45 minutes. Even so, I could tell my mother was getting a bit peeved (and all of this was happening in a language I don't understand much of and speak about three words of).

I'm meeting an old flame for lunch this weekend, and I have requested that we talk about anything but family (and that's going to mean I'm not going to say much...I don't think he'll mind).

well. i think i'm becoming less and less a fan of "the holiday's." i'm not sure i really know why. perhaps it's all the interference it causes with my personal objectives. maybe when i'm out of school things will be different. i guess i'll let you know next year.
so... christmas was pretty low key. i like it that way. i got ok loot. considering i didn't ask for anything. i got some money and my dear little brother got me a powerpuff girl doll-- Blossom. one day i'll tell you all about my fascination with the powerpuff girls. i also have an obsession with 90210 that i've been meaning to write about also....
angie, i think your aunt story is really funny. i don't have family experiences like that... i often wonder what my life would be like if my parents hadn't come to The States. i don't think i would've stayed in india if they did. i'd like to think that i would've asked to study in england. yes... imperial country, i know. but, well, maybe it wouldn't be england... maybe russia. or hong kong? or france! who knows... but my point was... i would've grown up around all my cousins. i wonder how different those relationships would be.
so, i'm headed to ohio tomorrow. one of my friends... my oldest friend in the world... (we've known each other since i was 2 and she was 4). has gotten engaged. and she wants an engagement party... and she wants it on new years eve. she's living out in san fransisco now, so i imagine this was the only practical time for her to have such an event at the parents homestead. i'm looking forward to seeing her... the last time i saw her was about 4 or 5 years ago. and ever since my family moved away, this girl has been a different person everytime we see each other. i guess i probably am too.
oh... but the most exciting part of the trip for me is that before we head to ohio, i'm going to a movie premiere! in DC... tomorrow. there's this woman filmmaker who went to NYU and this is her first feature film... she's also indian-american, and i've corresponded with her through e.mail... but tomorrow, i will probably get to meet her face to face. i'll tell you all about everything when i return... i imagine there will be some stories to share.
have a safe and happy new years everyone. 2001's gonna be good to us.

i feel like i should have some sort of retrospective on the year. but honestly, holidays leave me without much to say.

Wednesday, December 27, 2000

Ok, so I have a "we put the fun in dysfunctional" family story for all who cares. Just a lil background. I have three unmarried aunts all over the age of 40, probably have never even touched a member of the opposit sex, which is fine, but they do absolutely nothing with their lives. One of them still even lives at home with my grandma in the house that she grew up in - talk about high aspirations. Their excitement comes from making their only niece (which would be yours truly) as miserable as possible (I have many stories to back this hypothesis). Several of my friends have compared them to Patty and Selma from the Simpsons. Ok, that being said. . . . When my relatives come to visit my aunt who lives here in Houston, she only takes them within a file mile radius of her house - which would consist of a mall, Sam's, Target and Chinatown (i.e., you may as well be in Montana). So, being the holiday mood, I invited my aunt from Boston to spend the night at my place so that I could take her around the museums, downtown, etc. in the AM.

She comes over, and I am pulling out my sofa bed, changing sheets, etc. so that she could sleep in my room on my bed that I am extremely possessive about (a Serta pillow-top queen mattress, thank you very much). My cousin calls me in the meantime to wish me a happy holiday, so I am running around doing about five things at once while talking to him. Suddenly she says to me, "Get out of the room so I can go to sleep." I look at her, look at the phone and say to my cousin, "Greg, hold on one second." I look back at her and say simply, "My house, my rules," and I finish talking to Greg and end up taking about an extra 10 minutes simply becuase I felt like it. Of course she says nothing. And the next morning, the first words out her mouth were an apology. Later, I recounted the story to my mom who about fell out of herself, because she had never heard that aunt apologize in her LIFE. My point? Baby steps. I hope all is well with everyone . . . .

Just got back from spending the holidays at Mason's parents' house. My entire vacation consisted of cooking (well assisting his mom, really), reading (Mumbo Jumbo by Ismael Reed) and petting several dogs. Can't ask for a more relaxing holiday than that. I also got my most bad ass present, a Lomo camera. Have any of you guys ever used one of these? I plan on taking it out with me when I go see the lights of 37th street (an Austin tradition - this one street goes crazy with the lights - on an Al Copeland in New Orleans level - you slowly walk around, stick dollar bills on the electric meter of your favorite house, it's a huge block party of sorts, but goes on every night in December.)
I brought up the subject of happiest song at work. "Walkin' on Sunshine" was the winner.

Tuesday, December 26, 2000

Last week. Finished everything I needed to for school. Taught my final workshop for the year. Gave Christina lessons on ProTools so she can start to edit her mamoth radio play. Cleaned my place, Debris from the entire semester that wasn't trashed got filed in the appropriate boxes (more like shoved into boxes). Wednesday made the trip home with Meg, drove from Buffalo to DC, the snowy scenery in between is/was beyond description. Made it home Wednesday night. I'm proud of my parents, they didn't ask me to cut my hair until Saturday. I'm proud of myself for honestly not allowing them to guilt me into getting one. My parents have some issues with what I do, the viability of graduate schooling in music composition, but they decide to focus their frustrations on my hair, it's how we do battle (and relatively benign in the end).

Once I got home I allowed myself until after christmas to actually attempt to get anything done here at my parents house. It's after christmas now and I'm trying, I thought I would start off easy by catching up on much neglected correspondances (although i'm not sure if that is what you call this). I'm in DC until the 5th of January, then Back to Buffalo via NYC, where I'll visit some friends for a few days, or until my money runs out.

Christmas loot was good this year. A small bread maker and Saint Etienne's Sound of Water were highlights. I love St. E, and also the swirlies right now. I thought I knew of at least one song that was absolutely happy, I don't though, really. Rise and Shine by the Cardigans makes me happier when i'm happy but sadder when i'm sad. That's the definition of a good song in my book. Same with any song on My Bloody Valentine's loveless and St. Etienne's entire ouvre.

I'm going to visit the galleries in DC before I leave. The Corcoran has an exhibit entitled Andy Warhol: Social Observer which I must see. It's 1 dollar with student ID. Smithsonian is free. My SUNY ID card from Buffalo will get me in to the MOMA for free, that's a real bonus. As much as you can, I hope everyone is enjoying the Holidays.

Monday, December 25, 2000


Carl and I wish you a Merry Christmas.

Saturday, December 23, 2000

The ceremony this morning was beautiful, on the beach, maybe 200 people there to come together with song and memory and send off the canoes with the family and the ashes. My father among those in the canoes; a role akin to pallbearer. My brother and the rest of the boys on their surfboards; the lifeguards on jetskis. Enormous amounts of food for the pa'ina afterwards. My brother...the intensity of emotion, the need he feels to be tough about it, the burden of responsibility of being left behind with the living. He's at a time in his life where he's finding focus and purpose, serious about becoming a pro surfer, talking about moving out of our parent's house to live on the North Shore and be where the business is. He's been spending a lot of time with one of our sisters, the one closest in age. With me, he can't speak, he just curls up against me and cries.

No wonder I am wary of having children.

Thursday, December 21, 2000

we've having an ongoing discussion at my house about the happiest song ever. i think we may have settle on "my girl", most of it seems to be motown, stax and some beach boys. ask next week and it will change. "I've got so much honey the bees envy me, I've got a sweeter song than the birds in the trees"

.

Wednesday, December 20, 2000

oh weezie! you can't take this on by yourself. is he depressive? is he lonely? does he seem out of tune with the rest of the world? neither of you deserve to deal with this... it's just too much. how would he feel about seeing a therapist? most people are reluctant. if he's not.. you should make him go asap. it's just someone else to talk to... and he doesn't necessarily have to see a psychologist or psychiatrist... there are people trained in counseling too. i like them better anyway... i know that nobody is trying to diagnose me with something that i have to take prozac for... you know? if he is reluctant to go see someone though... then i need to step down and let someone else take over. does he live with you? can he stay with you for a while... it might make it easier for him to be around someone whom he feels the unconditional love from... it just helps. you should try to be with him as much as possible... but at the same time, don't cramp his space.
weezie.... my heart goes out to you. i don't really have any suggestions on music... just... nothing sad and depressing... and probably nothing angry...
and while you're dealing with all this... if YOU ever need to talk... or need a pep talk... i'm here... we're all here for you. you have a strong spirit.. and this year has only proved that. so... keep it strong and lead your brother by your awesome example! (sorry if that got too cheesy... i like oprah)

shelly... any shorts festival is game for me! my film is slightly over 3 minutes long... it's an experimental piece... a visualization of a poem (about unrequited love). so maybe all this love crap is good for something. i'm still working on how to get it online. what kind of films do you make shelly? i don't think you've mentioned before.. have you?

i need to shake the internet addiction. no i don't.

This year has been entirely too mournful to suit me (coming from someone who wore all black and had her hair in her face all through high school...). My grandfather through the spring and into the summer, a boy I used to babysit dying in a work accident, and now a man who was like a little brother deciding life was just something he couldn't do anymore. 21. I'm worried about my brother; in the space of two months, he has lost two friends that have been with him literally from the cradle. He cannot remember a time when they were not there...and now, they're gone in violent and senseless ways. He's 19! I hold him, I cook his favorite foods, I talk to him...is there anything else I can do? Any music recommendations from any of you?

jt & upma, i'm going to get the details for a short fest/ contest held by the alterna newspaper here. the cool thing is they accept all media: film, super 8, pixel vision, video. i think i'm going to send in one myself. hey upma, how long is your film? is there a way you could get it online for us to see? there are lots of online contests too.


i've managed to be in austin twice the week AFTER SXSW and in portland once the week AFTER NXNW but i think that is much smaller.

the SXSW breakdown:
March 9-17... film fest
March 9-14... film conference
March 9-13... interactive fest/ conf.
March 14-18... music fest/ conf.

www.sxsw.com

Upma: I know it's easier said than done, but girl, send out the film to those festivals. I mean, you don't want 5 or 10 years to pass and think to yourself, "I wonder what would have happened if . . . ." Also, let me know if you want the recipe for the squash and corn soup. It was scrumptious!

Thad: No way! The All Music Guide is my absolute favorite web site. As a matter of fact, I just sent the URL to Shelly a few weeks ago. I love the fact that it recommends albums, similar artists, etc. This is kind of old, but have you seen the Oxford American Southern Music issue? I can't remember what the issue date is, but Kelly Willis, Kim Ritchie (sp?), Wilco and several other bands appear on it. Even former Louisiana governor Jimmie Davis is on it.

If any of you are ever in Austin, you HAVE to visit Houston. Although H-Town has a reputation for its strip malls and suburbs, we have a ton of other things going on.

Hey, when is SXSW this year? I really need to make it out there.

Tuesday, December 19, 2000

richard buckner is really great. have you heard The Hill yet? he sings a song a capella on that album... it’s really cool.
cat power is really great. i saw her live about a month ago... she wasn’t as crazy as i thought she’d be... i guess her meds are workin alright.
i saw Dude, Where’s My Car on friday. it S-U-C-K-E-D. i am so sad at the state of Hollywood these days. what a disgrace.
how are all the christmas parties going? i’ve been to a couple dinners at friends houses... they’ve been nice. my favorite part of tonight’s little shin-dig was the spicy fruit drink my friend, Krystal (z- is that how you spell her name?) made... it was more than just cider. she had a name for it, but i can’t remember what. it was YUM.

angie- thanks for the soup recipe! i haven’t had a chance to try it yet... but i will soon. squash and corn soup sounds pretty appetizing... my friend Diane had pumpkin soup at her wedding... it was scrumptious.

stephanie- (do you prefer stephanie or steph?)... i HOPE you get to experience some of SXSW this year... the films are GREAT... and the music... what a high energy week. i can’t believe anyone who lives in austin COULD miss this event! if nothing else... at least try to come to one of the film screenings with me!

what a week. well... the film got done. mostly. there are a few changes i’d like to make if i get the time...
my professors really liked it... so much so they gave me an A+! i still can’t believe it...
i showed the film to a group of my friends tonight... i got REAL nervous. but my friends are the greatest. and they were all very nice and praiseful of my effort.
so... i’m in the process of sending it off to a few festivals now... although... i’m having second thoughts about it. i mean, if i got that nervous showing my film to my friends... how am i gonna handle showing it to a bunch of strangers?

my new favorite film site is www.filmthreat.com. and chris gore, is my personal God. he is the editor/co-founder of filmthreat magazine, as well as the author of The Ultimate Film Festival Survival Guide, as well as host of The New Movie Show on FX.

texas has some really great music that you can't call country just exactly. i love lyle lovett. i want to go to austin soon. son volt and wlico were uncle tupelo. sonvolt was early and wilco was the last album. son volt is the more country of the two. jay farrar has one of coolest voices ever. richard buckner is awesome. merle haggard is the king.but i've also been listening to alot of tool for some reason.....go figure.i love music. i'm addicted to allmusic.com, i'll look anything about anyone. i'm sick and kind of delerious, sorry.

Hey - there ain't nothin' wrong wit alt country, mista! And of all people, I thought I would be the last to listen to it, but I am a bonna fide convert.

Kelly Willis isn't all that great live (it may have something to do with the venue), but I think it's really cool how Kelly and Bruce perform together when the other one doesn't have a gig. I have a taped copy of What I Deserve. It's good and all, but I prefer the sound of Bruce though.

I've heard a couple of songs from the Springsteen tribute, and it does a body good. Another good tribute album is Joan Baez's Ring Them Bells to Dylan. Several people sing duets with her including the Indigo Girls (my fav band), Dar Williams, Tish Hinojosa, Mary Chapin Carpenter, etc.

Not familiar with the son volt guys. Missed the Jayhawks concert here a few months ago. What a bummer. You guys (the alt country people) would LOVE this radio station in Houston - KPFT. It's a Pacifica radio station, and it's the second (to NPR) public radio station here. The station is based out of this old house in the artsy fartsy area of town (Houston isn't ALL Bush country), and they play all kinds of alt country, Americana, singer/songwriter. Plus they have special shows for blues/jazz/Cajun/etc. Very cool stuff. If any of you are interested, I can tape the morning show and send it off in exchange for a sampling of some of your music of course.

Angie - you'd also like Kelly Hogan and Neko Case - I think both are on Bloodshot Records out of Chicago. I saw Kelly Hogan live the other week. She's amazing. I especially love her cover of The Magnetic Fields' "Papa was a Rodeo"

Monday, December 18, 2000

those son volt guys are big kelly willis fans. i have one of her albums on which she does a really good cover of the replacments "they're blind". some songs we're cowritten by gary louris from the jayhawks and charlie robinson. bringing it back home. return of the grievous angel is soooooo good. i can't stop listening to it. it's been in my cd player for months. also badlands a tribute to springsteen's nebraska is really good, every one goes on and on about how gerat johnny cash's version of i'm on fire is, but it sucks. i really like evrything else though.

Hey, I've got a kelly willis album! Cool!

Actually Bruce Robison recommended Beth Orton, as well as Shawn Colvin, to me. I prefer the sound of Beth Orton, but Shawn Colvin is good, too. Anyways, here's a bit of background. Bruce is an Austin musician, and he is married to Kelly Willis (another Austin musician). Bruce is Charlie Robison's brother. Charlie is married to one of the Dixie Chicks (Emily I believe is her name). If you know that song "Cowboy Take Me Away" by the Dixie Chicks, the two other women in the band wrote the song as a wedding gift to Charlie and Emily. Very cool stuff.

Sounds like I will definitely have to check out Cat Power. I think my next "must own CD" will have to be Return of the Grievous Angel: A Tribute to Gram Parsons. There is this amazing version of "She" by the Pretenders on that CD. The Cowboy Junkies, Sheryl Crow, Emmylou Harris and Lucinda Williams also appear.

Have decided that "Love Like Laughter" and "Feel to Believe" are great songs off of Central Reservation.

Sunday, December 17, 2000

AOR stands for Adult Oriented Rock. For example, the solo albums of Don Henley and Eric Clapton. You know the sound.

If you like Beth Orton, you'll probably like Cat Power. They have similar voices and songwriting styles, but Cat Power is much simpler musically. This site has some sound files but not from the last two albums (Moon Pix and Covers Record).

I think I remember reading somewhere that Bruce Springsteen is a Beth Orton fan.

Saturday, December 16, 2000

No, Zach, I don't think you are loony. I mean, if I were to ask Kofi Annan what the importance of the United Nations is, I would hope that he would give me more than just "to keep peace." And, so I figured that someone who was in a band totally dedicated to a particular musician would have some kind passion for that musician's work. I think I would probably prefer the songwriter route over the hits route, or even the 18 tracks (thanks for the suggestion Thad) as it would give me a good feel for the whole artist as opposed to one period in his life.

Zach, what do you mean by "AOR?"

I just bought Beth Orton's Central Reservation CD. It's very good. My fav songs are "Sweetest Decline" and "Stolen Car."

Friday, December 15, 2000

this is going to sound weird, i think 18 tracks is kinda a good start. it has a little of everthing on it, songs that should have been hits, ernest accoustic ballads of both early and late peroids. yeah it's stuff that wasn't right for albums but none is bad. in fact my roommates favorite springsteen stuff is from tracks. i also must stand up for greetings, as the two bad songs are two of the worst in his career, the good songs are some the best. for you and sprirt in the night are two of best songs he's ever done. i have a disorder in that in a lot of cases i will buy a live album first. i love live albums. so i can't help but support anything live with the e-street band. we were listening to asorted springsteen at two o'clock in the morning in effort to convert a friend, whom i offered a ticket to last time we saw the boss and he now regrets not going. he has demanded i make a tape for him with if i should fall behind on it. i realise the question was where to start but every album has at least one great song. though i think the place to start is born in the usa, just first couple of time you listen to skip the title track and dancing in the dark as you've heard them a billion times or born to run. skip nothing. just my opinion.

Thursday, December 14, 2000

Springsteen, like Bob Dylan, invites overanalysis. So, I'll try not to go to deep into this. There are two tracks for discovering Springsteen: the hits direction, where you dig "Hungry Heart", buy the Greatest Hits or the River and, hopefully, work your way into the the rest of the records. Some of these people get trapped by the hits and never bother to check out the rest. The second way is the Nebraska way. Some hipster convinces you that Springsteen's Nebraska is actually OK for persons under thirty and copies it for you. You listen, are amazed and hopefully search out the rest of the records. However, like the Hits method, the Nebraska track has its pitfalls. First, many Nebraska fans are convinced that the spareness of the tracks is their redeeming value. True, the recording of the album adds immensely to the atmosphere and theme of the record, but the real greatness is in Springsteen's ability to get inside the characters he creates. It is the songs, not the 4-track, that make Nebraska a masterpiece. These are the same sort of fans that believe the demo version of every song is more "honest" somehow than the version with the sax solo.

Springsteen albums follow a pattern from which he has never broken. He releases a big, bright upbeat album with hopeless, desperate losers hiding under the big arrangements, then he releases a dark record and lets the losers come closer to the surface. They go like this: Greetings From Asbury Park, New Jersey, The Wild, the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle, Born to Run, Darkness on the Edge of Town, The River, Nebraska, Born in the USA, Tunnel of Love, Human Touch/Lucky Town, The Ghost of Tom Joad, and Tracks. Of these the only albums are aren't five star masterpieces are Greetings, Human Touch/Lucky Town and Tom Joad. The others I recommend without reservation.

But, if I had to pick a place to start, I'd have to say start with Born To Run or Darkness. Those albums represent Springsteen at his performance peak. The songs are tight and muscular and brilliant. Those two records represent the highpoint of Springsteen as a rocker. If your interest is more on the songwriting end, Tunnel of Love, the River and Nebraska show a more "mature" Springsteen with more to say. Born in the USA is Springsteen's easiest (great) album on the ears and for that reason it has a reputation as being weak. Its not; any record containing a song as sinister as "I'm On Fire" can not be considered weak. But, it is Springsteen's most random album. There's no defining theme.

Tunnel of Love is probably my favorite Springsteen record (to finally answer your question), although it's the least "cool" album. This is the beginning of the Modern Rock Springsteen. Very AOR in places. But Tunnel of Love is unique from all other Springsteen records. It's about the collapse of his marriage to Julianne Phillips and it crackles with anger and bitterness. It's mean and it contains the most powerful our-love-is-dead lyric of all time: "Tonight our bed is cold/I'm lost in the darkness of our love/God have mercy on the man/who doubts what he's sure of." Ouch. They were still married when he released the album.

I hope that answers your question.

I hope that I don't seem like a loony for writing so much about Bruce Springsteen.

Hey Zack - what is your favorite Boss album? I borrowed Nebraska from a friend, but am curious to hear your take.

Hey Michael - never tried linoleum printing, but I've seen it done before. Very cool. Another thing I want to try is embossing with stamps. I was actually in Boston in March. Unfortunately we missed the duck tours, but we did get a chance to eat stuffed lobster. I have an aunt that lives in Somerville, and we have an office in Copley Square.

Steph - thanks for the URL. Will try to check it out next week.

Upma - I have a potato soup recipe, but I'm one of those cooks that don't measure anything - it's all by sight and taste. Anyways, here's my potato soup recipe: Sautee onions in butter. Bring chicken broth (I like to use the powdered stuff and add extra water since the canned stuff is too salty) to a boil. Add chopped up potatoes and let them cook. Mash the potatoes up to whatever consistency you like. When it looks about ready, add to whatever consistency you desire - milk or half and half (half and half tastes better but it is way more fattening - not that butter isn't, but you know how it goes) and instant potato flakes. To garnish, add cheese, chives, bacon, tomatoes, whatever hits you the right way. You can also add whatever seasoning - Tony Chachere's, seasoned salt, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, ground black pepper. I hope this helps somewhat.

My squash and corn soup kicked ass and took names, but my chicken left something to be desired. Oh well, you win some, you lose some.

I just wrote a really long post and then lost it.

JT, thanks for the description of snow. After reading that, I just may plan to be somewhere that it snows when it snows.

Zach, with all that you had to deal with for the show, sounds like y'all pulled it off well.

December 9, Ceder Street House. The Boss (us), Face Down in Shit, DJ Matthew P and Malabaster. Nathan woke up that morning sick. Its been going around so we weren't surprised, but we did wonder whether or not he'd be able to play the show. About 4, he and Krystal came over and he decided he was ok to play. We get to the house about 9:30 and wait around for Ryan from Face Down in Shit to show up with the drums. Originally, we were going to go on after them, but Nathan wanted to go on soon, so he could get home and back in bed. No problem.

Ryan shows. We set up. At this point I'm really nervous. I've never played in front of people with this band before. Plus, it always works like that for me. I'm nervous until we get started, then I'm fine. The house is packed and we're ready to go. Nathan clicks it off and we launch into the intro to "Badlands." Its went really well for like thirty seconds. We sounded like a monster and my confidence was up. Then I step to the mike to sing and POW, I get the shit shocked out of me. I totally forget the lyrics for the rest of the song. I didn't stop singing, but I stopped singing the right words.

After that song we got a new mike and the shocking problem was gone. We played four more songs pretty well, then Benji hit me or I hit him and we both went out of tune. So Benji started "Born in the USA" waaaay out (and I think he was playing the wrong note anyway. Plus, the most of the punk rockers were not singing along. We were sort of counting on them singing the choruses, but they didn't. So I felt like an ass singing "Born in the USA" out of tune, with no crowd support. The last song, "No Surrender" was pretty good.

Lots of people told us we were good and maybe we were, but I was disappointed by how badly I played and by how we didn't get much support on the sing-a-long stuff.

Then Face Down in Shit played and they were really good. I needed to leave cause it was pretty late at that point and Matthew P was about to do some dance party thing that I wasn't really in the mood for.

Today I bought the Coldplay album based entirely on the strength of the song, "Yellow." The rest is good, but not as good as "Yellow."

JT. I know I've said this before, but I'm so jealous of your relationship with Tony Conrad. I'm going over to Eugene Chadbourne's house (he lives in Greensboro) and I'm going to make friends with him. That way we'll both have avant-garde musician buddies we can talk about. Of course, Conrad and Chadbourne aren't exactly the same. Conrad, a pioneer in minimalism and drone. Chadbourne, the dude who played the electric rake. He's a really nice guy though.

Hey, JT, here's another group you might like. Idyll Swords.



upma - I don't know if I'll be in town for SXSW. my track record isn't so great. The past seven years I've lived here, it just hasn't worked out.
1995 - not 21, no point
1996 - still not 21 and it's UT's spring break
1997 - went to mexico
1998 - wedding
1999 - wedding
2000 - dating someone who has their own record label, is hosting a showcase and has an extra wristband, we break up one week before SXSW.

tired. cold. hungry. actually... not that cold.
my eyes hurt from staring at the computer for the last 3 days. i hope i’m not speaking too early, i’m not totally finished yet... but i think i’ve come to love my new computer and final cut pro.
“Video Killed the Radio Star” is playing on the radio and my foot won’t stop tapping.
i have to present my film to 6 (or 7) members of the faculty tomorrow at 1:45pm. i’m slightly nervous. they intimidate me. i’ve tried to not let them. but they win. power always does.
The Pixies are on the radio. i wish i could sound like Kim. i’m going to get my rock on starting in jan. super-local-rocker-girl Kat is going to teach me the ways of the bass guitar. i’m getting rid of the drum set that is crowding my bedroom.
snow. yes... it is magical. jt- you ought to take your beautiful description of said substance and turn it into a film. if you don’t, i will.
food. i’m hungry. all this talk of chicken and spinich and gourmet this and gourmet that... yuuummmmm. and then i’m awoken to the rude reality that is cheerios, pb&j, cheddar cheese popcorn, bisquick drop biscuits and oreo ice cream. i don’t even like ice cream. i bought it in a moment of “i’m angry at the world, let me pig out.” and getting skinny seems like an eternity away.
i love to cook, actually. it’s a little hard at the moment when time is so precious. does anyone have a good potato soup recipe? i feel like potato soup can be a good cure for the moment.
on the radio, Johnny Cash and Will Oldham are singing “I see A Darkness.”
*flashback to the Bonnie Prince Billy show where the intense eyes of Jim White peer over towards our side of the room. i think that he’s looking at me. no! yes...? noo. not me... no. GOD, those eyes!*
boston... michael. i’m gonna come get that tour. is it ok if i haven’t read the book? i will. question. there’s a band up in boston called Kid Tested. (incidently-- on the radio right now). the kid who does it is named Wes Safari (or something close to that)... do you know what i’m talking about? i LOVE it! that song, “Lucille”... so day-dreamy.
austin... stephanie. i’m going to be in austin in march for sxsw. you gonna be around? i went last year... i DUG it. austin kicks. my friend took me to a diner type place for breakfast the day i left... it was kinda near nothing... the airport maybe. i forget what it was called... but they were some great pancakes! by the way... 1/2” of ice?? wow. don’t worry about anyone laughing at you... ice is the toughest one to deal with. i’ve had my share of ice storms... everything always shuts down.
Broadcast is on the radio. i feel like roasting marshmellows.

angie - check out www.digsmagazine. com. they just had an article on xmas card making. their most complicated one turns into an ornament. very martha.
shelly - your posts make me hungry.
jt - your description of snow is just beautiful. we just had Ice2K here (1/2 inch of ice that shut down austin for a day and a half). don't laugh, northerners, texans can't handle winter weather.
went and played at Blazer Laser tag last night. Yeah, I suck, but it was lots of fun. A little humiliating to keep getting hit by the three feet and under crowd. But I guess if today's youth spends all day playing video games, they will totally sniper an inexperienced adult wandering into their line of fire. I came in 23rd. So the rules of laser tag involve no running, no kneeling, and no foul language. what kind of war game is that?
So after laser tag, we went to Roy Henry's Chicken and Waffles. Have any of you ever eaten at one of these? It was SO good. The best chicken I've had in ages. And it does go well with the waffles. Staggering.

Wednesday, December 13, 2000

Tonight was the open screening/holiday bash at the Squeaky Wheel (buffalo's finest not-for-profit media resource center). Lots of good shorts about dysfunctional holidays. Tony Conrad screened his latest. It was video tape footage of him in LA claiming it for Buffalo. LA now belongs to Buffalo, at least according to Tony Conrad. Later we talked shop, he wants me to help him out with some audio software. I don't mean to brag, but Tony Conrad wants my advice on audio software. Wants me to help him set up his computer. Wow. He told lots of stories about the people that he knew that were on the cover of HighWay 61 Revisited etc..... Tony Conrad is great, as are the people who run the Squeaky Wheel. It's almost become a home.

School is pretty much done for the semester. Thank Goodness, now on to the important things: laundry, composing, sleep.

I've known people that have made it through infinite jest, lived to tell about it, sang its praises. I don't have time. I'm going to try and tackle some Joyce, maybe Ulyses, over the break. I'm rediscovering Calvino also. Otherwise it's been acoustic text and Curtis Roads' monumental Computer Music Tutorial. Not such good reads, but information that i need to store and restore in my head. Plus Conrad gave me a whole new reading list tonight.

I've been trying to think what makes snow so blissful for me, and I've had plenty of opportunities to ponder it, it's coming down pretty hard as I write this, there at least a good 4 inches of fresh white on the ground from this evening. This is what I think it comes down to. Whenever it snows I can't help but look up. Straight up so that there is nothing else in my field of view except sky, clouds and snow. And rather quickly, the snow is no longer falling but I am floating up. My feet no longer touch the ground, I become the angel i'm supposed to be, ascendant. The cold, the snow on my face, it's a type of perfection, suspension. Blissful.

Shell - I love dinner parties, too. Tonight am making squash and corn soup (with stewed tomatoes), chicken in a creamy, white wine sauce and oven-roasted potatoes. Yum! Am also having a get together on Monday night, but menu is still TBD.

Tonight some folks from the Blues Society are getting together at Houston's Continental Club. The normal gig won't be there tonight, and the fill-in guy has been known to become "intimate" with his guitar on stage. Should be interesting.

A friend and I are talking about making our own stationary because the selection at Hallmark sucks! Anyways, we'll start off small with greeting cards and then move to notecards and letter stationary eventually.

Tuesday, December 12, 2000

another weekend, another dinner party, another menu: feta fondue with olives, pear slices, toast points, spinach salad with hot mustard dressing, zucchini fritters and yogurt cucumber sauce, a phyllo pastry called spinach boreks, and chocolate bread pudding with raspberry cream sauce.
dinner parties are my new favorite thing.


all the familiy xmas presents are wrapped and ready to ship. now only the fun presents are left.


both of the major newspapers in seattle have been on strike for three weeks. with all of the extreme cold weather all over the country, seattle is under daily energy restrictions so we don't have to buy extremely expensive energy from california. a kilowatt hour usually costs 30-something dollars and right now is going for 5000?


i'll take the infinite jest tour of boston but i've got to read it first. i wanna do an east coast tour in spring. money is going to be the deciding factor, of course. perhaps i'll start in atlanta and go thru NC up to you NY and Boston folks. my sofa bed is always open to you all.

Monday, December 11, 2000

Today is my birthday and I'm at my parents' house. When I get back, I'll report on the Boss show and stuff. Mike, I'll send you that list when I get back to my computer.

Just got back from Kansas City in the wee hours of the morning. Visited the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum (it was so amazing to see all of the things that the players were forced to do without simply because of their color - I guess it's easy to forget when you are not the one having to deal with all of the racist bull crap), the Jazz Museum (there were tributes to Bird, Satchmo, Ella, Ellington), took a picture of me standing at the corner of 18th and Vine, ate me some mighty fine BBQ, drove to the Kansas state line and back just so that we could say, "We're not in Kansas any more."

Was pissed at work on Friday because I mentioned to my supervisor that I came in at 7:30 that a.m., but was leaving at 4:30 so that I could catch a flight. She tells me that she was planning on doing my two year review (which happens to be almost a month late already) at 4:30 that day. So what did I do? Politely said, "Oh, I'm sorry. Let's do it first thing Monday morning," left at 4:30 and carried my happy ass on to KC. What the hell is that? And of course, it is noon on Monday and nothing has been said to me.

I read Infinite Jest this summer. I did it with my book club which made it easier to get through. I found the first 200 pages go pretty slow, but after that, I was hooked. It's well worth the effort to read - though usually any book too heavy for me to read in bed usually doesn't make the cut. I'd say more but I don't want to spoil it for anyone else planning on reading the book. The last book I read that I can highly recommend is David Sedaris' Naked. I think I read that book in about an hour. That man is so funny. They're doing a production here called Santaland Diaries based on his experiences as an elf at Macy's that I really want to see. So it's my friend's birthday this week, we're playing LASER TAG! I can't wait!

Saturday, December 09, 2000

all this book-talk... i'm so jealous!! i love to get lost in a book. i don't have the time for it... i'll read, instead of do the things i'm supposed to do. so, i've had to ban books-for-pleasure from my life for a looooong time. i'm glad to know that when i become a full citizen of the world again, (after school is done in may), that i can turn here and ask you where to start. i feel illiterate.

this past week-- well... it was kinda bad. i'd rather not go into it at the moment... it basically boils down to me being one big nut case.
good things happened too. like i showed my rough cut to two of my professors... one of them got all giddy and excited... LOTS of positive feedback. the other one was positive as well, but more constuctive. which is great... hopefully i'll have it done by tomorrow evening. we'll see. i'm really happy with the way this film is turning out... i think this is the first time i've ever said that.
i made a couple more film contacts this week too, which is awesome.
i might get a paid internship (or not paid) for the next semester... more on that in the coming weeks...
also... i went to dinner last night with zach and friends to help celebrate the big Z's b-day... which i believe is on monday. zach-- you TOTALLY have no right to call me "old lady" or "grandma" anymore... you old fart, you. :-)
i slept till noon today... i haven't done that in months. i feel guilty.

a while back i read david foster wallace's a supposedly fun thing i'll never do again which was pretty amusing. and right now i'm reading the girl with curious hair, which is a short story collection and pretty good so far i haven't attempted infinite jest yet either tho i see people reading it on the bus all the time. i'm also reading women of the assylum, which is first hand accounts by institutionalized women over the span of a hundred years. most were institutionalized because of their refusal to fit societal ideas of normal women or because they got in the way of their husband/brother/father because they wanted personal/political/property rights which were not afforded to women by law.

Friday, December 08, 2000

I've thought of picking up Omensetter's Luck a couple of times, just to see if I could hang it Same with Wm. Gaddis' the Recognitions. But, I'm too afraid that I couldn't make it through and I would feel like a failure as a reader. I've got the same sort of reservations about David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest, but I actually have a copy of that, so I might give it a go in a few weeks. And I know a couple of boneheads who read it, so I'm thinking that I'll be ok.

A couple of years ago, Johnny sent me an email copy of Harold Bloom's list of the 20th Century literary canon and I've been using it as a guide of stuff I "should" read. Its been pretty helpful actually. Of course, Bloom is a worldclass snob, so I've been going back and forth Bloom list book, something else (like Levon Helm's autobiography), another from the Bloom list, then something else I'm interested in and so on. Of course, I never really stick to that formula. Also, Salon recently published a pretty decent guide to contemporary literature. Some of their choices are head scratchers but most are on point.


doh! i fixed the link below and here it is again the bio page


yesterday, i went to the gallery openings that happen the first thursday of the month in pioneer square. i got some leads on materials and space so that was very good. i saw a woman, Diana Sheppard, who makes felt balls, all shapes and colors. they are in big piles. they have different things inside, so you never know until you pick one up how heavy it may be or what sort of noise it may make as you move it. the projectorguy was there. he was attached to a gas powered generator with a projector on his back. he had built a structure inside his sweatshirt so that from the side it looked like a normal human profile. images were projected out of a hole in the front of the sweatshirt, where a logo would be. if you looked into the sweatshirt, you saw one image. if you looked at the wall across from projectorguy, a completely different image was projected. interesting stuff. i also obtained a six foot tall headless mannequin. good day.

I was reading in Red Herring magazine the other day that a group of independent book store owners have created their own web sites - not necessarily to compete with the Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com mammoths, but just to keep top of mind. There's even a search for local stores and a recommended reading list if I recall correctly. If any of you are interested, you should check out www.booksense.com. I haven't had a chance to go through too much of it, but it appears to be pretty good. On a related note, there is also a web site for the Coalition of Independent Music Stores (www.cimsmusic.com) - they post recommendations if you are looking for new music to explore.

Thursday, December 07, 2000

Haven't read Vollman yet, Mike, but he's one of those authors that I know I'm going to get into eventually. I have such a backlog of stuff to read now that I shouldn't have to buy a book for another ten years. I bought the Black Dahlia about six months ago and when I finally picked up I liked it so much I read a ridiculous six books straight by James Ellroy. I promised myself I was finally going to read Robertson Davies' Deptford Trilogy (suggested to me by my friend Jane about four months ago) but I haven't even looked at it yet, cause my brain is so keyed in on Ellroy. LA Confidential features a supporting character that screws dogs. How can you come back from that?

What did you think of Whores for Gloria? I read a review in the Nation that was pretty down on it.

extremely bare bones. tres' ugly at the moment, but working, (i think) the BIO page!
you can see ideas i had for future category recommendations. i'm always looking for a good new book, band, movie, etc. and as nice as my coworkers usually are, i don't always care how good the new sandra bullock movie is. i also thought we could have a quarterly redesign (once we have a design that is). i was thinking the first one maybe we could all photocopy our heads and incorporate that into the bio pages. i've done this before and without too much manipulation you can make it pretty abstract in case, like me, you aren't fond of the idea of your photo on the internet. yeah, i know i'm daily reminded of how paranoid i am. anyway, if you guys like that idea you could mail the copies to me or scan them in yourself and email that to me. or if you have any other ideas let me know.eventually we should be able to write directly from that page. whadda ya think?

the webpage version of our bios is nearly working!!

Wednesday, December 06, 2000

I am not only PMS'ing, I'm sitting here with the awareness that I may very well be unemployed real soon now, as I am trying to file a grievance against the general manager of the co-op. Nope, can't give any details. Looks like that trip may happen sooner than I thought. That or I'll be begging my parents to let me sleep on the couch for a few weeks.

JT, please describe the bliss of snow in as much detail as you can muster. I'm still not sure I want to find out for myself what it's like.

More lake effect snow coming my way. Only 6 to 12 inches, but within the next 7 hours. Not enough to set a car on fire but enough to get the usually unaffected Buffalonians a little aprehensive. As far as I'm concerned:

SNOW = BLISSFULL J.T

who you are: Angie Joe (yes, J-O-E is my last name)

where you're from: I'm a third-generation Chinese American born and raised New Orleans East/9th Ward (the 'hood). I have a pure New Orleans accent, and one of my good friends told me that his first impression of me was, "That voice DOES NOT go with that body."

where you are now: Houston, TX

what you're doin there: workin' for the man - I work for an international PR agency doing work for high-tech clients - some as big as Hewlett Packard and BMC Software and some tiny dot-coms/start-ups. My job is ok - it basically finances all of my expensive habits like traveling and my shoe/CD buying habit. (NOTE to self: I will not become a corporate slave).

who you know and how: I know Shelly and Stephanie - both from high school. Shelly's parents live about 5 minutes away from my parents, although we only met in high school. Shelly, Steph and I would always scream across the hallways to each other about absolutely nothing just because the moment hit us. Last year, I made a side trip to see Shelly in Seattle when I was working out of our Silicon Valley office for a few months.

anything else: Well, I basically try not to let my work rule my life by engaging in random activities. And I do mean RANDOM. Recent examples: just took a gift wrapping/bow making class because my tomboy ass was tired of giving out pathetically wrapped gifts, am going on this random blues trip to Kansas City this weekend on credit just because you never know where you'll be in 10 years, volunteering for the United Nations of Houston chapter (they are trying to adopt a land mine and are working to raise funds to clean it up, and they want to come up with some other programs throughout the year), the Orange Show Eyeopeners Committee (the Orange Show is a Houston group that promotes local artists that normally would not get any play - the Eyeopeners committee plans different tours in the city. Just finished a blues tour that brought a bunch of yuppie crackers to the 'hoods of Houston for the real deal. Am currently working on a tour called "Made By Hand" where we visit different people who make products all by hand. Examples are glass blowers, piñata makers, pasta makers. Also need to come up with the copy for the brochure which should be interesting.), cooking and listening to a wide range of music from singer/songwriter to Americana/alt. country to standards to Motown to swamp pop to old ghetto funk rap to sappy crap to shameless pop. That's all for now.

Tuesday, December 05, 2000

Iron Maiden's Powerslave, at top volume, is the only thing keeping this night from being total shit. I just spent two hours in 20 degree weather trying to post these words: COMING SOON DEC 15 THE EMPERORS NEW GROOVE WHAT WOMEN WHAT CHOCOLAT on the shittest marquee of all time. Our biggest competitor has a big red light marquee, fully electronic, flashing, cool. We have a big stick with a fucking suction cup at one end. I hate my job.

My bio.

who you are:
My name is John Zachary Mull. John is a family thing (first sons, in order: John Melton, John Monroe, John Azor, John Julius, John Phillip and John Zachary. I think there might be one before John Melton, but I can't remember), but the Zachary part comes from Dr. Zachary Smith on Lost In Space. If you'll remember, Dr. Smith was the prissy, uptight asshole.

where you're from:
Hickory, NC. Thad currently lives in the house that we all used to live in. My parents moved down the road in 1994. Pretty much all of my family lives in Hickory.

where you are now:
I live in Greensboro, NC, a place that Upma hates because the quality of friends she has here would be much better in a cooler place.

what you're doin there:
Was going to school (political science degree). Now I'm just living here. I work at the world's most poorly designed movie theater, the Carousel Grande. (yes, Grande with an "e" but no, not "Gran-day.") Some days I wish I had a better job, other days I'm just thankful for all the reading time it affords me.

who you know and how:
Met Shelly, JT and Louise/Kainui through a high school friend named Johnny. JT and Louise I got to meet in person in New Orleans at the StingFlap convention of 96 (?). Shelly and I have managed to run into each other a few times, always in the cresent city. Johnny might show up on this blog eventually. You'll all know when he does. I doubt he'll slip quietly in. Upma and Ileana are folks I met in college. We all worked together at the campus radio station. Ileana and I worked together at the Terrace Theater before it was demolished and its employees transferred to the Carousel. John Rash has signed on to be a part of the blog, but hasn't written anything yet. He's my roommate and the editor of Slave, the zine that comes from our house. Thad I know through our parents. The rest of you are a mystery.

anything else?
I'm in Greensboro's greatest Bruce Springsteen cover band, the BOSS. I sing and play guitar, but we don't bother with defined characters so I'm not "the Springsteen" of the group or anything. The idea of changing the group to an originals outfit has surfaced recently. I'm for it because we've actually got something good going on these Springsteen songs, but wary of it because I don't want the responsibility for writing everything. I just got a piano (free) so who knows maybe I'll want to write a whole bunch of songs.

Beyond that, I read a lot and buy a lot of albums. (purchased today december 5, 2000: UK edition of Don Delillo's Underworld, Lone Wolf and Cub Dark Horse reissue and Iron Maiden Live After Death.)

I like so many things, but I'm usually to tired to do anything about it.

is everybody taking a cross country road trip at the same time? or am i just paying more attention to it because i'm planning one too?

who i am: Louise, among several other names
where i'm from: Hawai'i, island of O'ahu
where i am now: Honolulu area
what i'm doing here: working, paying off loan from senior year of college, finding low-budget no-studio ways of putting my art degree to work (so far, cheapie cameras, spoken word performance, backstage/lighting assistant for Iona Pear Dance Company). Currently in get-rid-of-baggage-scrub-off-residue phase; have offloaded much of book collection recently. Refuse to let go of my cast-iron wok. Crochet like crazy. Embroider some. Think about sewing a lot. Immerse self in cooking.
who i know: johnny by means of Gunnar Helleksson, a mailing list, and an odd email address (now defunct). Shelly, JT, Zach via Johnny and the wonders of the Internet. Have met all exactly once, in New Orleans.
what else: thinking about cross-country tour of continental U.S. next year. Currently seeking funding for such. Find myself having to use computer at work, which means having two big brothers (they adopted me and I've been trying to maim them ever since) reading over my shoulder. Bill says I should think about cross-country nude running across U.S.

yesterday in four isolated incidents, bums yelled at me, but today!
today people were rapping on the bus again. sitting directly in front of me, i saw a pimp checking in with the troops, so to speak. he finished talking to one woman in crew socks and high heels then had her call the other over. he lifted the new woman's face and started turning it in the light. "what happened to your lip?" she began explaining an old scar smeared by lipstick. "no, this one over here. where it is swollen. why?" "oh, that, that's hard candy!" she rolls it around in her mouth and all three laugh. when the pimp and two prostitutes get up to exit the bus another woman starts shoving the hard candy woman and yelling. i couldn't follow why. the bus doors close and another woman starts throwing herself against the glass emitting extremely loud high pitched howls. "SAB-rin-AAAAAA! (thud)SAB-rin-AAAAA!(thud) i was fuckin locked up with that bitch! she kept trying to get wit me." then the howls turn into a laugh. i think. at that point the light changes and we drive past the pimp and prostitutes, and the woman in socks and heels shakes her fist while screaming at the bus. we passed a woman wearing a purple feather in her hair and a man with two broken feet in a homemade military uniform. the bus stop had a heart drawn in lipstick that said "i (heart) dean's & lamont's dick."

who you are: stephanie friedman (stephanie means crowned ruler)
where you're from: born in chicago, raised in new orleans
where you are now: austin
what you're doin there: finding photos for textbooks, taking dance classes, cohosting stitch and bitch night, obsessively watching buffy the vampire slayer, using more chopping in my cooking (okay this may not sound like a big feat but I was a boil water and add stuff kind of cook forever, for EVER, but I took this gourmet cooking class, and now I'm all like, wow, cool knives, and I want a food processor, and when did I become a geek like this), and today I just won a lovely owl lamp in a white elephant relay, okay, that's all
who I know: shelly and angie from high school, jt from one visit he made and I've met johnny a few times
what else: thanks to everyone for their city advice. y'all make portland, chicago and the triangle all sound like places I'd want to move to.

my bio: i am thad, also zach's brother.....thad ray means brave leader if anyone wanted to know.i live in hickory n.c., it's about an hour and a half from greensboro. i am working at the carmike 12 runnin' movies and makin' popcorns. i am also expecting a baby in may, i think it'll be a boy.i know zach really well, i know upma and ileana alittle and i know johnny from highschool though i have not seen him in a long time. i believe it is my destiny to one day own a record store, that day will not be soon. i was a music major for two years and found it was sucking to joy out of it. i like listening to bob dylan, know he can't sing in key and not care. it means much less to me that tom waits sounds as though he eating glass as well as vocalizing(even i can't call most of it singing) then to my roommate, who is also a music major and can't stand things that aren't within the rules. tom and bob are geniuses. my musical knowledge is surprisingly well known in catawba county. it's still kinda weird when a friends dad calls me and asks" who did that song that goes like.....?" other then that i contribute none to betterment of the world, maybe one day that will chage too. my favorite musician is neil young. spelling is not my strong point, math is of the devil. thank you.

Monday, December 04, 2000

my bio--

who you are: upma. it's an indian name, taken from Sikh scripture. it means praise. yes, my parents are Indian and Sikh.

where you're from: born in West Virginia (shut up, they have nice mountains). raised in Lima, Ohio, went to high school in Chespeake, VA, went to college in Blacksburg, VA.

where you are now: Greensboro, NC.

what you're doin there: i'm in grad school, working on my MFA in film production. i wish i was at NYU. oh, if i could do it all over again.

who you know and how: i know zach and ileana because they live in greensboro. i know thad because he's zach's bro and sometimes comes to the boro to hang out.


my thoughts--
being in the same room as Mick Turner, Jim White (from the Dirty Three), Will Oldham, Paul Oldham, and the whole Godspeed You Black Emporer crew is nothing short of thrilling. this was my situation last night. it was a good night. except, i wish i coulda talked to them.
i'm still mad that my promised snow was not delivered.
i like chicago. but i haven't been there in a looong time. and i only went as a kid with my parents. i remember feeling energized.
i hear that portland is super fantastic... i have a couple friends that have lived there and they want to go back real badly. i hear that portland's film community is growing... maybe i'll check it out too? oh yeah... and the sleater-kinney girls like it there too.
i don't like greensboro very much... it's not very cozy and it's really not very friendly. (present company excluded). if you don't know anybody when you move here... it's hard to get accepted into the scene. they make you work for their love. i've lived here for a little over 2 years and i still feel like an outsider sometimes.
i do like chapel hill... it's cozier. i don't know many people there... and yes, the scenesters are a buncha dumbbutts. but i think it's harder to feel isolated there. just my guess. and chapel hill has much better eats for the most part. and a whole lot more rock.
i've never been to kansas city.


Steph - Chicago is a GREAT place to work and be. Do you remeber Ricky Choi? He actually lived there for about five years, and now he is in med school in Charlotte. I would LOVE to live in the Windy City, but I am a wimp when it comes to cold weather. If you're ok with it, you should also try Boston. Chicago is great for blues and jazz music. The natives are extrememly down to earth, and the attraction is that although it's a big city, it's still the midwest so people are still fairly friendly. Great shopping, good amount of young people, beautful architecture, smart city, has two daily newspapers. Cost of living isn't bad either.

I did some research on Portland, too. I figured that it was the San Francisco without the high costs. Apparently, Portland has the largest book store in the US/world/universe (can't remember the specific claim to fame) called Powell's. They have all kinds of cool funky rooms. So, the science fiction might be in the gold room, etc. Also, amazon.com gets a good amount of books from other. Another notable about the city is that they have great brew pubs. If you like film, there is a huge film show called North by Northwest (a sister to Austin's South by Southwest - names may be wrong on this). The city is also pretty strict about keeping its city limits tight (so that it doesn't turn into a huge "burb").

I actually tried catching up with Dana when I first moved here, but it somehow fell through.

ALL: have any of you ever been to Kansas City? I am going there this weekend. We are primarily doing going to hear the blues and eat some good BBq. My friend is all about going to see Independence (the birthplace of Harry Truman). Any ideas?

Ok, really need to get back to work. Still need to get the bio up, I know, I know.

Shel - I have to send you an e-mail.

Peace out-
aj

hey guys,

If you're curious, shelly and I have a new piece up at www.magnetandsteel.com. so does mike. we are glitter magnet and magnet eyes. he's ultramagnetic mc 900 foot jesus (I think I got that all right).

Sunday, December 03, 2000

I don't know if this is a cliche or not, but lately I've being playing my piano in the dark. I've found that I prefer to play in the dark (not total darkness, I can still sort of see the keys) because, one, I'm not distracted as easily as during the daylight hours. And two, I'm not a very good pianist (I'm still learning everything) and I've found that I actually play better in the dark because I tend to ignore the few bits of piano theory I know and concentrate on sounds. I've been surprised the last few nights to learn that if I don't turn on the dining room light I can play in a way that sounds surprisingly... decent. I still don't know anything fancy.

The forecast for Greensboro yesterday was anywhere from 3 to 12 inches of snow over two days. People were freaking out. Grocery stores were packed. Everyone thought they would be out of work/school on monday. Not a single flake of snow has fallen on our fair city.

Thursday night: Saw a beautifully handprocessed film called "De Profundis" by Larwence Brose based on the text by Oscar Wilde, his prison letter. Part of the porcessing was Brose pissing on his films (like Warhol paintings) among other things.

Friday Moog gave his lecture on Leon Theremin and the Moog Synthesizer, the highlight being a video of a Scheafer beer comercial that looked like a Moog comercial at first. Then some guy from Holland showed us his two theremin-G4 powerbook setup. The demonstration wasn't that impressive. Moog was funny, I couldn't tell if he was trying to be officious or was just a bad public speaker (i think mostly the latter) but he had such peculiar pauses before and after he said everything. The best was when some kid asked the dutch thereminist if there was a difference between the old theremins built with vacuum tubes and the new ones built with transistors. The Dutchman directed the question to Moog, who stood up, walked to the front of the audience took a deep breath, paused dramatically, then said......theres a slight difference in the wave form.....another long pause and then he sat down. And that's how the father of the Rock Keyboard does things.

Saturday was too much sleep and not enough filming. And why must i watch Steve Raimi productions with such fervor?

Today breakfast with Jana, a trip to school to talk about "A Carlo Scarpa, Arcitetto" by Luigi Nono, (an absolutely amazing piece of music, all of Nono's late works are) with Kostas then built some MSP examples for my digital audio workshop on tuesday with my professor who was really just procrastinating completing his tenure file stuff. Cort is a genius and a slackass who gives every single one of us hope.

Since I'm here I'll take care of this business too.
My Bio
who am i: J.T.

where am i from: Northern Virginia and/or the suburbs of D.C.

where am i now: Buffalo, NY

what am i doin here: Working towards a Ph.D in music composition, extending my adolescence much farther than anyone thought possible, teaching workshops in exchange for the use of film and film equipment. Escaping Denton Texas, which is where i was a year and a half ago. Enjoying the city of Buffalo (there's nothing wrong with liking where you live zach, it's done wonders for my constitution, especially coming from places when if given the choice to take or leave, have left.)

who i know and how: i met johnny at East Carolina, in retrospect that much was inevitable. through johnny i met shelly, and zach and weezie. through shelly i met stephanie (in a 36 hour whirlwind tour of Austin, TX) and i heard about all you UNCG cats from zach or most of you anyway. i remember reading a few of mike's things from a small piece of nostalgia some of us call stingray flapjack.

anything else? my verbosity? i think that's enough

Shelly,
The art project is my upcoming holiday card. Yep, Zakk gets another piece of mail he shouldn't open in front of his mother. I've moved slightly away from theVirgin Mary effect - going slighty more random goddess-y. The clothespins are actually for a store display of eco-friendly shopping bags, and the hand wipes for emergencies like take-out falafel pita with lots of yogurt sauce. This year, I have a live model for the photo on the card! I may still wind up using a self-portrait, tho.

Glad to hear Zach loves NC...I'm thinking about moving. Dunno where; plan to take a cross-country trip next spring/summer. Hope to see you in Seattle!

OK, I got it, Shelly.
Aundrea :)

zach, thanks for all the input on north carolina. I've been to visit the Triangle only once but really loved it. I never made it to Greensboro, which seems a shame after reading your post.

Saturday, December 02, 2000

saturday. woke up too early to work more on aformentioned film project.
then, at noon i went got to help my friend troy with his film project... he needed me to act. what you guys don't know is that it is very rare for upma to say yes to such a task (camera fright??) and then even more rare for upma to admit to actually having fun while doing it. but... the reason it was so fun is because we were outside in the drizzle sleet 37 degree weather. and i had my hair down. (damn...i must really love troy).
i got my audio track re-done for the most part... not as perfectly as i had it the other night... but it'll get there. (btw, shelly, i searched my computer up and down for modified files and the such... thanks for the suggestion though).
i watched Happiness last night... GREAT movie. made my friend very uncomfortable and very disturbed. it was kinda funny.
today's funny-- a friend of mine went on an un-date (it's really a date, but he doesn't want to admit to it) with a girl that said, "why does Bush want to be president again?"
i wanna go sledding tomorrow.
i hope all the (projected) snow doesn't mess up Godspeed You Black Emporer plans.
zach, i didn't realize you were such a superhuge fan of greensboro. i'm still not. although... i may be in town a little longer than originally planned.

Friday, December 01, 2000

Stephanie. A whole bunch of us are from North Carolina, so any questions you might have about living here can probably be answered. I've never lived anywhere else, so I don't have the most experienced opinion, but for what its worth, I think that NC especially the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill (aka the Triangle) area is a great place to live. Of course, I don't live in any of those places. I live in Greensboro which is about an hour west of that area. For me, Greensboro is the best NC has to offer. Its a NC's third largest city. The two biggest being Charlotte and Raleigh. Charlotte isn't my kind of place. Its not a huge city, but it sprawls and its ugly. The split between the rich and poor is extreme. There is a closer redneck to millionaire ratio in Charlotte than you can find anywhere else in the world. Raleigh is a little better. Its like Greensboro in some ways, I think the closeness to Chapel Hill makes Raleigh people a little crazy. Chapel Hill is waaay cooler than Raleigh and that's what gets them. I think Raleigh's twenty-somethings are always itching to go that extra twenty miles and just be in Chapel Hill. Chapel Hill is a college town, nothing more. Its small, happening, and snotty. I've always liked the place myself. I could totally see living there. Non-Chapel Hill North Carolinians tend to resent CH a little. That's where the bands are. That's where the art films are. That's where the blah blah blah. Its a cool place, no question. But, like all cool places it attracts a certain kind of scenester dickhead. You take the good with the bad. Durham is an ok town, I suppose. But really. Johnny once said to me that he wasn't going to move to New Orleans just to live in the fucking suburbs. There's no reason to live in Durham when you could just as easily live in Chapel Hill.

Greensboro, to me, is the synthesis of all of these places. Its a lot bigger than Chapel Hill and less attractive to dickheads. For several reasons. One, Greensboro is physically larger than Chapel Hill, therefore its not as easy to "be seen". If you want to be a part of the scene then you have to go to it. You can't just walk down Franklin Street in your Tivas and Tommygear. You have be a part of the scene and people have to get to know you a little bit. If you're a shithead, then there are plenty of shitheads for you to be with, this is a college town, after all. But you are not going to bother the rest of us. Also, GSO is close enough to the rest of the major cities in the state that you can go anywhere you want without much hassle. C. Hill is 45 mins away. Charlotte, an hour. Asheville, an hour plus. Even the coast isn't really THAT far away. Well, its kind of far. Plus, Greensboro has great history. The first civil rights sit-ins happened here. The Greensboro Massacre was a tragedy but it is important to the understanding the dangers facing the labor movement in the south.

So, anyway, I dig North Carolina. I hope its not too lame to like the place you live.

weezie, what is the art project?

Hi Shelly - yep, I figured it out. I thought you might appreciate my latest drugstore purchase:
3 packs "natural flex" baby bottle nipples, 1 tube clear eyelash adhesive, 1 bag of 50 wooden clothespins, 1 pack Polaroid 500 film, 1 box antibacterial hand wipes. The cashier smiled.

so i finally finished my N-30 diatribe. if you read it while it was in progress, you should read it now that i'm done, since i did write the whole damn long thing. here are related official news links if you care. i'll be working on a list of links with protestor's side of the story but those usu take a little longer to get up and running so they'll be forthcoming. if you don't care, too bad, ignore me.

so I've started thinking about moving again. My lease is up next summer. My short list of places to move is Portland/Seattle, Raleigh/Chapel Hill/Durham area or Chicago. Any of you guys live in any of those places or have input on pros and cons? (shelly - what do you know about portland living?) I'd want to keep doing something in publishing and if the move is to chicago, I'd be bringing along a friend or two. You guys have any input?
ps. Hi Angie Joe! It's so cool to hear from/about you again. What are you doing in Houston? Do you ever run into Dana there?

N-30. yesterday was the one year anniversary of the WTO "riots" in seattle. over 50,000 people came out to protest the meeting of the World Trade Organization in seattle in 1999. downtown seattle was shut down after the protesters mostly sucessfully, kept the WTO from meeting by filling the streets. some vandalism ($3 million) occured from a very small group of "organized anarchists" (sic). the vandalism occured mostly but not exclusively to large corporations like nike town, and starbucks. all of the businesses downtown lost a lot of business during the peak of the holiday shopping season. (an irony probably not lost on protestors demonstrating against global corporatization.)hundreds perhaps thousands (i can't find a final count) of protesters were arrested mostly for only trying to excercise their freedom of speech. the police were initially unprepared for the numbers of people who turned out to protest 9/29/99 (not that the new orleans police force is renowned for their excellent record regarding human and civil rights but anyone who has experienced even one mardi gras would immediately see these seattle police had absolutely NO crowd control training.)and 9/30/99 the seattle police vastly overcompensated and over reacted to what were mostly peaceful protests. police in riot gear without any visible names or badge numbers unleashed a volley of rubber bullets, tear gas, and billy clubs upon protesters and citizens, trying to go about their normal business, who were caught in the fray which more than engulfed the entire downtown. i worked next door to the park where the largest protest lined up. labor union and teamster guys marching right next to typical environmental protesters right next to people in business suits. it was pretty amazing actually.i've never seen anything like it before. however, i saw the same four seconds of video footage of a dumpster burning and a window being smashed over and over countless times on the local and national news. this was the saddest part of what the media hype overshadowed. people with interests usually as diverse as those groups all took issue with the WTO enough to go out and march together. the messages of the VAST MAJORITY of PEACEFUL protesters was lost.i live on capitol hill the neighborhood where the protesters were pushed after the protestors were forbidden to protest and police stopped ANYONE in the downtown area and the entire city was under curfew. from my apartment you could hear the rubber bullets being shot and the cannons of tear gas or pepper spray boom. people in apartments closer to the fray than mine were choked in their own apartments by the pepper spray only to try and go to the streets to find fresh air to be blasted again and subject to arrest.the only violence i saw was on the part of the police.
a No Protest Zone was created disallowing protestors who had gotten legal permits from protesting anywhere near where the WTO delegates could see them. in the days following protestors who'd been arrested were held without charges being filed against them, charges of abuse came from those who were released. video tape after video tape of police battering people and using excessive force came out. the chief of police resigned in shame. most of this video hardly made the news at all, certainly not the national news. citizens formed their own news networks and gave showings of the footage. a documentary called This is What Democracy Looks Like was put out. that had been a rallying cry of the protestors and was again one year later as protestors gathered to try and celebrate their successes of last year, reiterate their points from last year, and protest last year's police brutality. there was a new police chief who handled things somewhat better than last year. the mayor had refused to give permits to any of the protest groups who tried to register. the reason given was because none of the groups expected over 25 people, so the mayor felt a permit was unecessary. when questioned what would happen if the groups had tried to register together in a group larger than 25, the mayor stated that he would deny them a permit. but the police chief Kerlikowske handled things differently. he spent the day on the streets talking with the protestors and even attending a candle light vigil. this was markedly unlike the unapproachable behind the scenes mayor and police chief norm stamper, last year.mayor schell took this approach again this year in spite of last year's distasterous results.
the police presence was very high but police gave protestors escort down the streets where they marched chanting "whose streets? OUR streets." several protest events were planned and converged at around 2000 people blocking motor vehicle traffic on several roads in addition to several others blocked by ready police cars and paddywaggons. but the mood was mostly joyous with bands, music, dancing, and food in addition to the politics. the media once again trivialized the many issuess which brought the protestors out on the streets, instead focusing on the traffic effects of the protests. only 2 or 3 protestors were arrested in the daytime.
late in the night several dozen up to perhaps several hundred protestors were arrested, most for Failure to Disperse. the argument of the protestors, and the overhead footage from news helicopters seems to back this up, is that by the time the orders to disperse were given, the police already had the protestors surrounded. those who did attempt to disperse were ordered to remain still because they were under arrest. both this year and last, labor and legal observers hired to be impartial observers to police AND protestor activities, were pepper sprayed and arrested with protestors. today a group of protestors were supposed to file police brutality suits against the city from last year. i wonder how many of those protestors were arrested again last night. i wonder what the statute of limitations on that is and how long they have to file. i've been away from the news today so i don't know the current status of all of this but i thought you should know about what is going on.

Oh good. I'm not in the wrong room (don't laugh, it's happened before). Stephanie Fried Chicken! How goes it? I am in fact in the great state of Texas - Houston actually. Shell, I'll get to my bio next week - I have to find something interesting to say about myself. Ha! Maybe we can add a couple of other categories like: fav album/movie/book and something funny like if I were a food/drink what would I be and why. Toodles. -aj

yay!! angie!!
happy birthday mike!!
upma, have you tried searching your computer index for files modified yesterday?

all: zach and i were talking about putting up a bio page for each of us and i think i'm almost near knowing how to do it. so i'm gonna start collecting the info. we thought this would be the good stuff, feel free to add whatever. we've got lots of ideas, which are above our skill level right now but feel free to add your own and we'll work on it.if you know how to convert your idea directly into html that's even better.

BIOS:
who you are:
where you're from:
where you are now:
what you're doin there:
who you know and how:
anything else?
you can email me this stuff but maybe we should also post it in the meantime?

here's my info:
who i am: shelly
where i'm from: new orleans born and raised
where i am now: seattle
what i'm doin here: after condemnation by my family i moved here a year or so ago and worked at an ad agency that i detested. now i'm doing contract and temp work trying to finance an art habit.
who i know and how: i know zach and jt and weezie through johnny who i met while on exchange in greenville, north carolina. although louise and i only met in person when we decided to have a "convention" at my house in new orleans. i know mike through the same johnny, although mike and johnny have never "actually" met since they were email zine list accquaintances. i got onto mike's list and corresponded with him for years until we met in real life earlier this year when he came to seattle and crashed at my place during a party. so that either makes me very punk rock or a geek. stephanie and angie joe know me back from the screeching days of high school in new orleans. and still like me anyway. aundrea and i met on a trip to italy and ate gelato together every night.
anything else? other places online that i do stuff: magnet and steel, killoggs

after i stop crying, i'm gonna kill my computer. i guess it's not as bad as it could be. the scenario-- i was working on mixing down my audio track for my short film project. i was HAPPY with it. i was PROUD of it. so. i go to open the project this morning... and none of the audio shows up. i saved it. i saved it a hundred times. so where the hell did it go????! i guess i'll have to do it again. dammit... i was almost done with it too.
maybe i should've gone to med-school
michael-- your birthday party? happy b-day.

hey angie joe! what are you up to these days (and aren't you in Texas now)?

Hello, is anybody out there? Shelly, I sure hope this is the right blog, otherwise I'm sending random messages to strangers. Word.

aj