Monthly Archives: June 2010

Why – Carly Simon (1982) [archive]

maybe it’s just lust, but whatever. this blog needs an update.

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Allen Ginsberg on Lysergic Acid [archive]

It is a multiple million eyed monster it is hidden in all its elephants and selves it hummeth in the electric typewriter it is electricity connected to itself, if it hath wires it is a vast Spiderweb and I am … Continue reading

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One Hundred Years of Solitude [archive]

one hundred years

of solitude

1. the state of being or living alone; seclusion: to enjoy one’s solitude.
2. remoteness from habitations, as of a place; absence of human activity: the solitude of the mountains.
3. a lonely, unfrequented place: a solitude in the mountains. Continue reading

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Dolores del pie [archive]

i did such a “silly” thing today,
or so my father said:
i walked from Daly City fog
to San Francisco’s bed.
i swear i didn’t have a way,
i hardly had a will,
but i read the words of many signs
and smelled a daffodil.
the taquerias smelled so good
they almost sucked me in,
but my empty wallet refused to pay
my stomach’s dividend.
why walk the 8.8 whole miles?
for solitude and cloud?
you hardly wonder just as much
at Amaranta’s shroud!
let me be, leave me in peace,
i’m just a little poet.
the hour is nearly dead happy
and mimosas seek my throat.

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i’ll trade you my walk for your ocean,
the deal is fine with me.
sidewalks, stoplights, cars, take it all,
i’ll be splashing in the sea.
miles and miles and miles, you’ll go,
the scenery may change,
but unless you dip your toes in salt,
your bargain’s quite deranged.
diving with dolphins, swimming in rays,
the beach is magical!
to the universe of sublime dear water,
a walk’s a particle.
so try your walk and try make gay
with what your feet can do,
while i, misty-mind and soaked,
float free and think of you. Continue reading

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who’s coming with me? [archive]

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Holy Mother of God! [archive]

fuck i’m so full. i just ate like five pieces of combination pizza from costco. goddamnit.

it’s only 1530 and i’ve already accomplished so much today: watched USA get robbed of a World Cup victory, ate mcdonalds breakfast, dropped Billy off at the airport, visited the eye doctor, gave my car an oil service, drank a cappuccino, read about a hundred pages of One Hundred Years of Solitude, made some progress in Puzzle Quest for iPhone, dropped off my prescription, picked up essentials from costco (bagels, conditioner, eggs, melatonin, pizza), listened to a two-disc album by Pretty Lights, and, as i said, ate about five pieces of pizza. it’s amazing what happens when you wake up at 0652.

that’s right, ronny woke up before 0700, once again, to catch a World Cup game, USA vs Slovenia, the country with the highest population in the entire tournament vs the country with the lowest. at halftime, the game was 2-0 in Slovenia’s favor, at which point i made a sausage egg mcmuffin run to console myself. somehow, i don’t know how, USA picked it up in the second half and scored not one, not two, but THREE goals. wait, just two. the referee called offsides or a foul or something or other or whatever or don’t ask questions shut up shut up! it’s basically a huge deal right now. USA robbed of a rightful victory because we refuse to replace the sad squishy sphere-eyed stupid fucking biped with a more reliable referee, the incredible modern computer machine thing. Koman Coulibaly of Mali, the face of human failure:

the truth is, though, USA should be happy about today’s tie, as it just about equalizes their incredible luck from the last game, the one against England where the tying US goal should pretty much be credited to the England goalie for dropping the ball in the box. in case you missed that game, here are the highlights:

this is going to anger a jellyfish, but i already listened to one of Rachel’s recommendations, an album called “Filling Up the City Skies” by Pretty Lights.

two discs long, it’s basically been the soundtrack of the day everywhere i drove. electronic, downtempo, hip hop, dubstep, it doesn’t get more chill than this. even chiller, the artist puts all the music up on his site for free. though every download link dons a little donation button right underneath (which i still think every artist should have on their site), Rachel is convinced the guy makes all his music from touring. i believe it; i’m already down to see him.

after the game, in the doctor’s waiting room, during the oil service, i read a ton of One Hundred Years of Solitude. i’m just nearly halfway through the 458-page monster. no, 458 pages isn’t reason enough to call a novel monstrous, but Marquez’s excruciating details and endlessly cascading transitions besiege the reader with unstoppable force and energy; it’s a monster. i swear i love this book already. it started out comedic, fantastic, and surreal enough to remind me of Don Quixote, but by now, the comedy and surrealism only sometimes surface above the sea of the novel’s relentless tragedies. Colonel Aureliano Buendia in the last chapter reminded me of the enigmatic figure of Kurtz from Heart of Darkness, dark and prophetic, violent and unforgiving, and hopelessly chaotic. only halfway through the work, i already feel as though Marquez’s novel topples over three or four Homeric epics as it weaves fluidly and vivaciously in unflinching Tarantino-like time through five generations of honest-to-god Murakami eroticism (with a dash of blood and a cup of incest), Conrad chaos and violence, and fits of Shakespearean fate. and solitude. solitude everywhere.

i’m done talking. this might be useless to do since so much of the novel is a steady, constant, never-ending building up, so that the best sections are riddled with subtle and brilliant references to past events and characters in the novel, but i’m going to quote two of my favorite selections from reading today. the first reveals how a mother was the first to learn of her son’s murder…

As soon as Jose Arcadio closed the bedroom door the sound of a pistol shot echoed through the house. A trickle of blood came out under the door, crossed the living room, went out into the street, continued on in a straight line across the uneven terraces, went down steps and climbed over curbs, passed along the Street of the Turks, turned a corner to the right and another to the left, made a right angle at the Buendia house, went in under the closed door, crossed through the parlor, hugging the walls so as not to stain the rugs, went on to the other living room, made a wide curve to avoid the dining-room table, went along the porch with the begonias, and passed without being seen under Amaranta’s chair as she gave an arithmetic lesson to Aureliano Jose, and went through the pantry and came out in the kitchen, where Ursula was getting ready to crack thirty-six eggs to make bread.

“Holy Mother of God!” Ursula shouted.

…and the second is a portal into the mind of another son, entrenched in the madness of war:

“It’s quite simple, colonel,” he proposed. “He has to be killed.”

Colonel Aureliano Buendia was not alarmed by the coldness of the proposition but by the way in which, by a fraction of a second, it had anticipated his own thoughts.

“Don’t expect me to give an order like that,” he said.

He did not give it, as a matter of fact. But two weeks later General Teofilo Vargas was cut to bits by machetes in an ambush and Colonel Aureliano Buendia assumed the main command. The same night that his authority was recognized by all the rebel commands, he woke up in a fright, calling for a blanket. An inner coldness which shattered his bones and tortured him even in the heat of the sun would not let him sleep for several months, until it became a habit. The intoxication of power began to break apart under waves of discomfort. Searching for a cure against the chill, he had the young officer who had proposed the murder of General Teofilo Vargas shot. His orders were being carried out even before they were given, even before he thought of them, and they always went much beyond what he would have dared have them do. Lost in the solitude of his immense power, he began to lose direction. He was bothered by the people who cheered him in neighboring villages, and he imagined that they were the same cheers they gave the enemy. Everywhere he met adolescents who looked at him with his own eyes, who spoke to him with his own voice, who greeted him with the same mistrust with which he greeted them, and who said they were his sons. He felt scattered about, multiplied, and more solitary than ever. He was convinced that his own officers were lying to him. He fought with the Duke of Marlborough. “The best friend a person has,” he would say at that time, “is one who has just died.” He was weary of the uncertainty, of the vicious circle of that eternal war that always found him in the same place, but always older, wearier, even more in the position of not knowing why, or how, or even when. There was always someone outside of the chalk circle. Someone who needed money, someone who had a son with whooping cough, or someone who wanted to go off and sleep forever because he could not stand the shit taste of the war in his mouth and who, nevertheless, stood at attention to inform him: “Everything normal, colonel.” And normality was precisely the most fearful part of that infinite war: nothing ever happened. Alone, abandoned by his premonitions, fleeing the chill that was to accompany him until death, he sought a last refuge in Macondo in the warmth of his oldest memories. His indolence was so serious that when they announced the arrival of a commission from his party that was authorized to discuss the stalemate of the war, he rolled over in his hammock without completely waking up.

“Take them to the whores,” he said.

i think i need a nap. Continue reading

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A Galaxy of Startling Sounds! [archive]

god i’m glad to be back in the bay. this place is addicting. beautiful people, music, and surrealism everywhere.

for example, the evening before she left, Rachel and i caught the tail-end of this crazy electronic music party on Treasure Island, in the same general area where the Treasure Island Music Festival is held. by the time we got there, everyone was smashed: people were drinking, smoking, whipping, dancing, rolling, tripping, and hooping out so hard, and there wasn’t a douchebag security officer or cop in sight. the sun was setting behind the north bay, a light mist was enveloping San Francisco, and the bridges slowly illuminated in expectation of night. we should’ve skipped the Haight St. fair altogether for this party.

the day before, i watched my very first 2010 World Cup game, USA vs England, at at&t park in the city. i’m already really into it. i seriously love soccer. epically huge field, one little ball, one point at a time, two 45min halves + tiny bit of stoppage time, no bullshit, no breaking for commercials, just the game. i’m going to actually try to watch every game played by teams i’m rooting for (Greece already lost one, USA tied once, and Italy tied once). perfect balance: i’ve got two shitty teams and one great team.

next game on my schedule is Greece vs Nigeria on Thursday at 7am. sweet.

didn’t do much else that day but read and sleep. later on i met with Rachel & company at a dance club in the mission. it was so so crowded with sweaty people dancing their asses off to some pretty sweet afrojams. i paid $5 to get in and another $5 for a strangely good whiskey-orange-ginger drink. bass kind of crapped out halfway through the night, which was discouraging, but then someone busted out a big ass drum to make up for it. nice.

the day/night before, Rachel and i joined Chris and his friend Sofie at Hippie Hill for some tall Tecates, silly smokes, and jazz jams. at night, we went out to 222 Hyde (fuck the $5 covers, man) for bumping electronic tunes and dancing in the dark. i’m really not sure how all us alcohol/music lovers got into this little predicament, paying to get into places to pay even more just for a drink with the possibility of hearing what you want to hear. i think we should just come to my house for free and blast all our favorite music while getting ten fools drunk on one $50 bottle of whiskey.

whatever. like i said, i am so fucking happy to be back in San Francisco Bay. claremont is kind of a boring place, but it’s ok. i had fun with my friends down there, especially Allison. we went swimming in the ocean at Seal Beach. no, there were no seals. yes, there was another mythical creature (Donni). the last night in claremont, Allison and i ate fucking amazing sushi and sake at this tiny place on foothill eclipsed by the hilarious sushi cruise, followed by a yogurtland excursion. what else? we had some silly parties. the crazy cat, Soy Milk, was in heat the whole time. a week of yowling, crying, humping, and frustration. everyone gets laid but poor Soy Milk. and Kira, i guess. but she was too young to care. cutest puppy in the world.

besides reading 200 Emily Dickinson poems in two days, i ended up watching a few movies while i was down there:

of course i’ve already seen Kill Bill. it was Allison that was the virgin. last time i watched it was with Mark, a triple feature sandwich with Tarantino as the buns and this trippy 1973 Alejandro Jodorowsky cult film as the meat. this time wasn’t merely as epic since we watched the movie on two separate days, but some things never change: volume 2 just does not compete with volume 1. but both are great.

the other three i had never seen and i had them already downloaded on my computer, so i watched them, one a day, while Allison was at work. Helvetica is an independent documentary film from 2007 about typography and graphic design, centered around the typeface of the same name. Helvetica is everywhere. 3M, American Airlines, American Apparel, Apple (for Mac OS X, the iPhone OS, and the iPod), AT&T, BMW, JCPenney, Jeep, Kawasaki, Lufthansa, Microsoft, Motorola, New York City’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Panasonic, Orange, RE/MAX, Toyota, the U.S. government (for tax forms and NASA shuttles), and Verizon Wireless all use Helvetica. it was interesting hearing the wide and varied opinions of typographers talking about the typeface. some find it beautiful, some find it disgusting. but all agreed that the font has a power of ubiquity, morphing to the needs of its employer. in a sexy American Apparel ad it might look edgy, while for Apple it might take on an air of elegance, and for the US government it merely serves to promote clarity. Helvetica, more than one commentator noted, is like air. it’s just there. [disclosure 1007311925: this blog is written in Helvetica.]

the second movie, Les Enfants du Paradis, or Children of Paradise, is a 1945 Marcel CarnĂ© black-and-white film set in the 1820s-30s Parisian theatre scene. over three hours long, the film takes us through the lives of a beautiful courtesan, Garance, and the four men–a mime, an actor, a criminal, and an aristocrat–who love/lust/desire her in different ways. it’s long and tiring, but the film is just so well made that you never really get bored. this clip doesn’t have subtitles, but i bet you’ll still watch the whole thing:

the last movie, a super-meta 1999 Spike Jonze cult classic, had been recommended to me a few times because people know i love trippy shit. yeah it was a pretty weird movie, but it wasn’t the best. i probably shouldn’t do this, but here’s my favorite clip from the whole thing, by far. it comes pretty well into the movie so you probably shouldn’t watch it if you plan on seeing it anytime soon.

it’s been awhile, but i added a bunch of new music to my iTunes yesterday. a ton came from Rachel……

Bad Brains
Balkan Beat Box
Beats Antique
Explode Into Colors
The Glitch Mob
Pretty Lights

…some came from the Table Manners blog…

Anthony “Shake” Shakir
D.F. & Pam
Jonny L
Kikumoto Allstars
Snuff Crew
plus a bunch of TM mixes

…and a few came from other randoms…

Georgia Anne Muldrow (Ryan)
Ludacris (no idea)
The S.O.S. Band (Chris)

…i’m in disco/funk/soul heaven:

what now? reading reading reading. i’m about 3/4 through this book:

it’s by Haruki Murakami, a contemporary Japanese writer semi-famous for his 1987 novel, Norwegian Wood. i’d read that one before, and it’s great, but Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World is an entirely different monster. it interweaves two seemingly separate tales, one involving a man living in a ultra-modern world where one can have a high-tech sci-fi nonsense job like data laundering and shuffling, and the other involving a goldilocked unicorn-inhabitated fantasy land where a Dreamreader grips unicorn skulls to read old dreams, and… i give up. it’s useless trying to explain a book like this. just read it. you especially, Meryl.

good news! one of the most depressing things that struck me about leaving Pomona was facing the realization that free virtuosic classical concerts wouldn’t be practically hand-delivered to my backyard anymore. but i found out that the Old St. Mary’s Cathedral in San Francisco holds free noontime concerts every tuesday! i went today and basked in the brilliant clarinet, viola, and piano of the Trio Brillante:

Trio, Op. 83, No. 2 (Max Bruch)
Trio, Op. 83, No. 6 — “Night Song” (Max Bruch)
Trio, K. 498 “Kegelstatt” (W. A. Mozart)
Concertpiece No. 1 (Felix Mendelssohn)

oh, by the fucking holy no way shit, i have purchased Panda Bear tickets. actually, ticketmaster (die fuckers die) says the tickets are already in the mail. holy god. i’m not going to see him at pitchfork anymore, apparently, but it’s all good; i got tickets to see him monday, september 6 at the fox theater, 1807 telegraph avenue, oakland, 94612, california, united states, earth (though when the time comes, my mind will hardly still be here).

i’m excited, but i’ve definitely got to tone it down a bit, or else i’ll set myself up for disappointment. same with the record, which is due to be released in september also. starting July 13 though, singles are coming to Paw Tracks, Kompakt, Domino, and Fat Cat. Kompakt?! that’s supposed to be microhouse and minimal techno shit! did Panda Bear make a minimal house album!? i would die. i know he’s already played shows with new material, but im not ready…..

ps, i might be traveling to Argentina y Chile! oh my god i hope. Continue reading

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favorites from the Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson (1-200) [archive]

sorry about all the recopied poetry lately. i promise i’ll speak my own words at some point. and i sort of promise i’ll kind of speak my own poetry at some point. 1 Awake ye muses nine, sing me a … Continue reading

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Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s 5th Picture of the Gone World [archive]

              Not too long 
                               after the beginning of time 
upon a nine o'clock 
                               of a not too hot 
                                                      summer night 
  standing in the door 
                                   of the NEW PISA 
                                                         under the forgotten 
                         plaster head of DANTE 
                                                           waiting for a table 
                            and watching 
                               was a man with a mirror for a head 
which didn't look so abnormal at that 
                                                        except that 
                               real ears stuck out 
                                                           and he had a sign 
                                         which read 
                                                     but anyway 
                   as I was saying 
                                   not too long after the beginning 
                           of time 
                                            this man who was all eyes 
                      had no mouth 
                                      All he could do was show people 
               what he meant 
                               And it turned out 
                                                          he claimed to be 
                                      a painter 
                                                  But anyway 
                         this painter 
                                      who couldn't talk or tell anything 
                                            about what he 
                    looked like just about the happiest painter 
                            in all the world 
   standing there 
                             taking it all 'in' 
                                                and reflecting 
                                in his great big 
                                                       Hungry Eye 
                                          but anyway 
      so it was I saw reflected there 
                                    Four walls covered with pictures 
of the leaning tower of Pisa 
                        all of them leaning in different directions 
                               Five booths with tables 
                  Fifteen tables without booths 
            One bar 
                         with one bartender looking like a 
                                                              baseball champ 
                                with a lot of naborhood trophies 
                                         hung up behind 
Three waitresses of various sizes and faces 
                                 one as big as a little fox terrier 
                                 one as large as a small sperm whale 
                                 one as strange as an angei 
                        but all three 
                                     with the same eyes 
                  One kitchendoor with one brother cook 
                                                                    standing in it 
                                                    with the same eyes 
                                                                    and about 
one hundredandsixtythree people all talking and 
waving and laughing and eating and drinking and 
smiling and frowning and shaking heads and opening 
mouths and putting forks and spoons in them and 
chewing and swallowing all kinds of produce and 
sitting back and relaxing maybe and drinking coffee 
and lighting cigarettes and getting up and so on 
                                                                         and so off 
                                                     into the night 
without ever noticing 
                                 the man with the mirrorhead 
      below the forgotten 
                                       plasterhead of DANTE 
                                                                  looking down 
                                                          at everyone 
                                                                with the same eyes 
                               as if he were still searching 
                                        for his lost Beatrice 
                                                            but with just a touch 
                                                 of devilish lipstick 
                                                                     on the very tip 
                                                         of his nose

Continue reading

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110th Crescendo [archive]

I know how to withstand poison And sickness known to man, In this void. I’m no apprentice When it comes to remembering The eternity of suffering Quietly I’ve been through, Without complaint, sensing inside Pain the gloriful um mystery. Afternoons … Continue reading

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