Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas from the Bloggy, Bloggy Dew

I've wanted to mix these for years. Thank you, Universal Music Group.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

what's behind the mask

Last night, after months of delays, and in the aftermath of a snowpocalypse of historic proportions, I tried out a continuous positive airway pressure machine, or CPAP. Some of my best friends swore their praises and curses of the machine, which either sung them into a device-assisted date with sandman, or made them to claw at their faces and sleep unadorned.

I didn't claw. As uncomfortable as this looks, I had a much better night's sleep than the last time I was so nocturnally wired. Because this time I was masked. Thanks to this Darth Vader-like apparatus I breathed in not only positive air pressure but clean and more or less allergen-free air, with the added benefit of a humidifier. The sleep center had moved to a new facility just weeks before, and the mattress - which turned out to be simply a big cushion on top of the standard hospital-issue slab - was more comfortable by far than the hospital sleep lab. I did miss the Soylent Green-flavored relaxation videos piped into the hospital sleep lab, replaced this time with the Charlie Brown Christmas special and a news report on adopted children finding their birth parents. But the bedroom was decked with artwork that reminded me of the big sleep of Edward G. Robinson.

when it's sleepytime down south

I woke wanting more sleep, but feeling like I actually slept.

that's me!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Linda and Aisling, the Scriveners

Not all musical Liverpudlians were as cuddly as the Fab Four. The Fab lapinfille brought to my attention as a case in point the Reynolds Girls, one-hit wonders who are at a considerable disadvantage already by being just two and furthermore by not being Fab. Produced by the law firm of Stock Aitken and Waterman, who issued their relentless briefs and shook up the legal airwaves with such hits as Dead or Alive's "You spin me round" and the collected works of Kylie Minogue, "I'd rather Jack" ratcheted up the UK charts to number 8 in 1989. Once heard, it can't be forgotten, no matter how much you try. Once seen, the video cannot be shaken from memory, and the questions spin right round like a record round round round: What teenager would let themselves out of the house wearing that? What contest did les filles Reynolds win - and who lost? Why are there people like Frank? What exactly is "Jack"?

"Jack," as the blonde Reynolds explained in a television interview at the time, is a dance, liberally speaking. But the ambiguity of the lyrics is hard to ignore, suggesting that the girls would rather masturbate than Fleetwood Mac. Here across the pond, the youth of my generation happily integrated the two, though in the case of Tusk, with some difficulty.

Accordion to their wikipedia entry, Les Reynolds failed to chart with their next single "Get Real," and the sample available on their MySpace page makes the reason clear: they were calling for nothing less than working class revolution.

i'd rather, Jack

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

if you gotta go, go now

This year's model

As the snow falls on our little burgh and the Christmas tree is lit on the town square and we candy the oysters to leave for Santa when he visits our cozy cave, remember 'tis the season for another yuletide tradition to warm the cockles: the Charmin holiday restrooms in Times Square. Next door to what just last year was the Virgin Megastore and is today a gaping maw of unutilized commercial space in the center of New York's Disneyland Theme Park, the Charmin base camp employs blue and pink-decked elves of unusually perky demeanor given their holiday employment requires cheerfully inviting the teeming masses to come and void their bowels, with no expectation to void their pockets, for this is free like America.

the kindness of strangers
Last year at Marienbad

Not only do the elves shuttle customers in and out of the free receptacles, but they clean up after the teeming, voiding masses. And they sure are happy to do it! Perhaps no-one is happier with his seasonal vocation than Charmin Guy. The most gregarious of Procter and Gamble's holiday charges is closing in on 2,000 frends on the Facebook. I am one of them, and can track how many happy customers tag him in their holiday photos. Here he is recording a testimonial behind the arras of a new feature for 2009, the Canfessional:

I attended this public bacchanal for the first time last Christmas.

and now for a word from our sponsor

Sadly, this year they have dispensed with the sleigh and have offered in its stead a photo op of more commercially appropriate but none-too-festive means:

These are the times that try men's duodena, but I'd like to hope that the out-of-work actors who make this a joyous and mostly hygienic season (it looks like somebody missed a spot on the floor of the receptacle I used monday afternoon) will take this experience off-off-Broadway and transform their economic suffering into avant-garde suffering. It can't be any worse than starring Willem Dafoe opposite a giant duck with stigmata.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Black and WTF Like Me


My contribution to Black and WTF , found as is in a volume of House and Garden from 1948; coincidentally, the same year Joseph Cornell designed a holiday cover for the magazine.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

@BoltBus blogging

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Bus blogging

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

Friday, December 04, 2009

American Masters: Rick Dees

Over the transom from lapinfille comes Rick Dees's companion piece to "Bigfoot" and "Disco duck." Any single one of these records may seem like no more than cheap novelty with a driving beat, but the cumulative effect of these dismissed if not forgotten lipstick traces of the nineteen-seventies is more troubling than bell bottoms. Dees is clearly fascinated with modern man's increasing distance from nature, meaning not only natural environment but his own animal instincts. These treatises on bodily transformation are mined in the rich vein of his contemporaries Davids Johansen, Cronenberg, and Bowie. Today, Dees lords over America's Top 40, and while Lady Gaga may traffic in personal identity a la Bowie, and Mariah Carey has shed her secret life as Chewbacca, we can only hope that as Taylor Swift grows into adulthood she throws her remarkable poise and skills into her own cryptozoological project. I think I'll tweet this at her.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Bus blogging

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

Lunch blogging

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Bus blogging

Eastern Avenue and Twelfth Street