Archive for September, 2010|Monthly archive page

the Bears are 3-0

I am leaving for Indiana in a few hours.
Phil is getting married to Dawn on Saturday. they have been together since high school, I understand, since before I knew either of them. and they decided to make it official. that’s pretty boss, that two people can just get together and figure it out like that and know that this is the person you’re going to get married to. now that I type it out, that has to be a simplification of their relationship. but I think it’s cool nonetheless. and Phil’s got the music for the reception all picked out and ready to go.
I am one of his groomsmen, which makes me bashful like a six-year-old girl. I feel like I can cross something off of a list of necessary life accomplishments: someone thought enough of me to put me in his wedding party. this has happened before; I was my brother’s best man when I was nineteen. and not to lessen the importance of that, but I feel that I more fully appreciate the gesture. don’t get me wrong: I’m still plenty dense and stupid, but nothing like I was in 2002.
anyway, it begins tonight. gotta pick up my tuxedo tomorrow afternoon, so I’m getting ferried to the airport in Baltimore by the lovely Aarti this evening. it’s going to get heavy, and I expect to be sleep-deprived by the weekend. we’ll see how it all shakes out, but I’m pretty sure “booze-soaked” will prove to be a good way to describe the next 72 hours.

so let’s get to trekking already.


nothing to it

Phil’s bachelor party was last night. I missed it, I’m still out here in DC. next week is the wedding, and I get to wear a tux. look out, world.

I’m not exactly sure what time it was when I arrived at the DMV in Arlington this morning, but at 10:30 — give or take ten minutes — sounds about right.
I was getting my license updated. I’ve got plenty of reasons: my address is old; my weight is way off; I no longer have a beard; and I look different enough on my ID that I occasionally get stopped by doormen at bars, or am questioned by waiters when I try to order a drink with dinner. an example: when she saw the picture at my grandmother’s birthday a few weeks back (I was fumbling for a business card) my distant cousin said I looked like I had “just robbed a convenience store.”
fair enough, I’ll grant that as well. I was wearing an orange t-shirt in the picture, and it suggests I’m a member of some armed anti-tax patriot group, reading up on “The Turner Diaries.” or possibly some kind of dull stick-up artist. 
but reality is a lot more boring. I just wanted to get this motherfucker updated. is that so wrong? did I offend some sleeping deity, did I bow to a false god, did I call what I was to experience upon myself?
I must have. or maybe I didn’t. what matters, and what only matters, is that I spent nearly three hours on a Saturday morning at the DMV in an effort to reel in a new driver’s license.
I registered to vote (I am now represented by the underwhelming Gerry Connolly), and almost finished a book while waiting: “A Clash of Kings,” the second in a series from a fantasy writer named George R. R. Martin, which you might interpret as really lame as I once did. whether or not it’s a piece of fiction fit to be remembered in the annals of history is up to debate, but it’s certainly a page-turner. so efff youu.
you ever see images of the morning commute in Asia? not the 60-mile standstill traffic jams, but rather the images of thousands of committed socialists riding to and from on their own bikes? entire highways, streets, turned over to bicycle traffic.

yeah, you totally remember.
I often dream of a utopia like that, where traffic didn’t involve two tons of heated seats and air conditioning per driver. maybe eight weeks on a bike has gotten into my head, but I’m all for upending the national transportation apparatus. put bike lanes on the goddamned interstates, I say.
I’m meandering. anyway, it was a pretty mundane way to spend a Saturday morning, and I thought everyone should be reminded of something as obvious as this. to close, here’s some Elmo Williams and Hezekiah Early. you better keep your head down, becausethey’re some bad motherfuckers.

the sink was busted

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad spoke to the U.N. in New York today. He represents a scary government, but I feel he personally comes across as more of a cartoon villain.

anyway, I once met some crazy asshole — who had come by to fix the sink — who said as much:

[Ahmadinejad] said there were three theories about the origins of the Sept. 11 attacks, including “that some segments within the U.S. government orchestrated the attack to reverse the declining American economy and its grips on the Middle East in order also to save the Zionist regime.”

we all got hoaxed, but don’t get bent out of shape about it

just in case you were wondering — and I know you wereJoaquin Phoenix was faking that whole “I’m snorting a ton of cocaine and pursuing a rap career ” thing, as part of an elaborate hoax to promote a movie. he said so last night, on Letterman.
I’m kind of disappointed. I’d have preferred that he remain addled. everything I’ve read makes it sound as if aschewing a career as a tone-deaf Johnny Cash for something much more incomprehensible is such a bad thing.
well I say fuck the red carpet, Joaquin. go back to being a pitied celebrity hobo. if I never heard from you again, I don’t think it’d bother me that much (though I did like “Signs”), but it probably wouldn’t bother you too much either.

some things you keep for yourself, and some things you let go, and some things you record so that others may appreciate the realness:
on monday evenings, channel 11 has a former bears player from the past access theprevious  weekend game.  i saw this guy by the name of ed obradovich, bears player from late 60’s-early 70’s give his recount of the game w/clips.  you would have liked it.

but seriously

the 49ers just went right down the field on New Orleans with two minutes left and no time outs, Samurai Mike has a big-ass cross just hanging out there, and they got the 2-point conversion to tie it. if they keep the Saints out of the endzone with a minute left, I’ll become a 49ers fan for the season.

two minutes later

nope. so much for that!

it’s been a strange couple of weeks I’ve been out running in. I’ve been out running metaphorically. Grandma turned 90 and we all went out and got down. not really getting down, but going to the hospital with Mar for routine bloodwork and getting dressed up and going to Grandma’s birthday party at Pesto’s. that’s kind of getting down. I signed up for a grad school fair, then just realized that it’s on the day I’m out of town to Valparaiso again for Phil’s wedding. god damn you Phil and your wedding.

but that’s okay, I’m still cruising. work is interesting, Aarti and watch movies and go to the dog park, the weather is nice, and I live by bike.
holy shit: I’m a hipster …
and Chicago beat the Dallas Cowboys in their home opener at Jerruh Jones’ football mecca. so who cares about San Francisco? to hell with those assholes!

so yeah. everything has been alright. I’m cruising, getting the hang of it. I gotta get to bed.

Mar says I owe the Midwest an apology

I am impressed with young master Evans’ rhythm guitar skills, and wear his band’s t-shirt with a sense of hometown pride. right around 2:30 is where it hits its stride, I think.


boy howdy, but it’s been a busy week.
on Tuesday (I think?) Fu Manchu came through town. my brother called me up.
“dude, guess who’s playing at the Black Cat.”
“I don’t know. who?”
“the Fu!”
the first thing I thought was Foo Fighters. the second the thing I thought was why would my brother call me up to tell me about the goddamn Foo Fighters? so I said, “who?”
“the Fu! Fu Manchu.”
I dropped everything. the rest of the day in the office was a total waste, I got nothing done. I made the poor Davidson graduate who’s unfortunate enough to share an office with me listen to “Hotdoggin.'” what are the odds that she got It?

that night, Aarti and I met at a restuarant in Dupont that served an entirely vegan menu. holy shit! I bet you think that such a menu sounds awful, because, I don’t know … people reflexively dislike vegetarianism in the same way that they don’t like the French and think Obama’s a muslim. I hate the French as much as the next guy, but that doesn’t mean my eggplant ratatouille wasn’t totally boss. for an entirely vegan offering, it’s pretty filled out and is worth your time.
Aarti went with me to the show. we rode our bikes and locked them in front of the club because that’s how we do in the city, paid too much to get in, and watched Fu Manchu rip through a set in about 75 minutes. they didn’t say much, save introduce the songs. stuff like “this one’s called ‘Cyclone Launch.'”
the guy in front of us, wearing cut-off jeans, Chuck Taylors and an In-N-Out t-shirt, carrying a paunch and showing male pattern baldness, represented the crowd nicely: it was almost entirely male, white and middle-aged. and there was a mosh pit. Aarti wanted me to get in it. but I am not of the disposition to try that shit any longer.
I love Fu Manchu. or, I loved three or four albums they put out between 1995 and 2000, and I loved the absence of pretension that came with their music. they like fuzzed-out guitars, pinball, tricked-out vans, skateboarding, reefer (obviously) and the beach. just about every song they’ve ever written has thirty seconds of extended jamming (see the 1:30 mark here). but everybody gets old, and the experience loses its edge. I think that’s the last time I’ll see Fu Manchu live.

tonight, because Aarti is out of town and I was a combination of antsy and lonely, I went and saw a late showing of “Centurion.” it blew. let me tell you why:
I have now seen three movies directed by Neil Marshall. the first was “Dog Soldiers,” which was about a squad of British commandos getting chased through the Scottish highlands by werewolves. they’re picked off, one by one.
the second one was “The Descent,” about spelunkers who get lost in the wrong North Carolina cave. it was admittedly pretty good through its first half, as the tension and claustrophobia builds, and then they run into humanoid creatures that want to eat them and they’re picked off, one by one.
“Centurion” sucks, because, you bet, it features a small ensemble cast that’s being hunted by an antagonist that picks  them off, one by one. this one’s set in the Scottish highlands as well, just 2,000 years earlier. and there’s even a scene where someone gets the tendons in their leg cut and are left for dead, just like in “The Descent.”
so he borrows scenes, hooray! but while this one doesn’t lack unorigionality or excess viscera, it certainly lacks a coherent plot.  and I don’t even know why these Roman Legionairres are running all over Britain! and why do the Roman suits want to fuck over the entire legion? and why is the cinematography be so good, and everything else so bad? why was the best thing about going to the movies tonight the Reese’s Pieces? and why can’t I watch shitty movies for a living? why?

that’s Earth.