Tag Archives: Japanese

Jamaica

~ 0 ~
SFO in the early morning
MtVC
sleep
triple couple brunch date
SFO in the afternoon
work
packing
eating
yellow fever film
SFO late at night
Japanese, Mexican, American, or Chinese?

~ 1 ~
Hank Williams on the
turbulent red-eye
flashlights in the early morning
United Club at IAD
hella babies on the
flight to Jamaica
the first Jamaican woman to speak to/about me:
“it’s not fair. he’s not even using it,”
referencing my hair
all customs agents are the same stern
accosted by taxi drivers
one is hella chill so we go w him ($15)
he walks slow as hell
“we grow up w weed”
tried to sell me some but his guy is out
Caribic House
gentleman clerk
third floor balcony view of the sea
buy weed from souvenir shop ($20 for crap)
Pork Pit
buy weed from random vagrant (J$200 for crap)

~ 2 ~
breakfast at the Mocha Cafe
Knutsford Express to Negril
buy Blue Cheese from taxi driver ($5 for quality)
Yoga Centre
stroll and smoke along the beach
the German dude
yoga in the evening
shower and drinks
Alfred’s Ocean Palace
couple drinks and cricket at the Sunrise

~ 3 ~
smoothies and breakfast at the YC
chillin on the beach
spring rolls and papaya salad
Natalie naps / Americanah
drinks at One Love bar
curried conch w rice & peas at sweet spot

~ 4 ~
goodbye YC & Negril
KE to Kingston
wild winding ride east
the big city
the Spanish Court,
free rum punch on arrival
walking in the rain to
Devon House
coffee for her, coffee i-scream for me
walking in the lightening rain
Natalie goes chic in the city
divine Indian at Nirvanna

~ 5 ~
free breakfast: eggs, platanos, festival, bacon, fruit, coffee, water
taxi drive with a former yam farmer to
the National Gallery of Jamaica
walk through saturday downtown market
taxi to the grocery
Tashanna the angel
Natalie runs on the treadmill, i walk to KE
sunset swimming in the freezing infinity pool
hot bath w love
shower the hair
dress and small dinner
last home drink
up up up the hill to
dub club
smoky dub music in the clouds
danced
saw fireworks
and popcorn
and dancing
circles, circling back to a
champagne glass next to the drivers seat
flask of herb wine next to mine
slowly, slithering back to New Kingston
in the nighttime of a new day

~ 6 ~
free breakfast: kitchen sink omelet, fruit, coffee, water, festival, platanos, and a complimentary mimosa
walking to the banks, several failed withdrawals
packing up
waiting for Robert
red shirt, tan truck, big smile
cash out
ride up
the treehouse
the tour
the pool and trail
dinner at 6?
acki and shellfish, peas and rice, greens not calaloo
reading and drinking
scrabble in bed under the net
never ending music for a wake, then an end

~ 7 ~
wake up puffy eyed a little before 9
shirtless on the balcony
big rainbow across the sky
Chef says breakfast is on the way
coffee, scrambled eggs w veggies, fried plantains, breadfruit (looked like dry pineapple slices), slices of mango, a peeled orange, everything fresh, juicy, lovely
more coffee, Bobby and Chef smoking
prep
driving to Holywell
the waterfall hike
smoke at the falls
kiss on the hills
walk to David’s coffee plantation
the Chinese crew, little kids giggling and playing games, the two big dogs loafing and eyeing everyone, the coffee man deeply darkened by the sun yet profoundly lightened by endless cups of coffee
walking back home
Natalie’s forgotten R1: the run
gap cafe too fancy
walk thru the military yard
flask of clear rum, water, cheese puffs, and chocolates at the bubbles stop
walk home
cold shower (Ginger on drums)
wifi, soup, and dinner (more Fela)
seafish, fried carrots and greens, potato, yams, plantains
greasy spliff
drinks and reading

~ 8 ~
up a little earlier, round 830
coffee and breakfast on the taller balcony
acki and fish, breadfruit, fried plantains, papaya, orange
reading reading reading
the ride to Craighton
the $25 tour w Jerome
280,000 coffee plants—arabica not robusta—the latter 52% of the world coffee, the former 48%—though like the #1 most traded good (oil), the #2 (coffee) is often adulterated as there’s no standard nor authority—and Blue Mountain arabica is something special, with 70% of its sales going to wealthy Japanese—Jamaicans themselves drink instant coffee—unless they’re like Robert—usually Arabica ripens in 5-7 months, in Blue Mountains it takes 9-11—juicier, sweeter—Twyman and other north side farmers get less sun so their harvest is shorter
three cups of coffee after the lesson
walk to red light
bananas and coconut snack from the roadside rasta
walk from red light
Natalie loses her shades
hitching a ride w the 33 year old who spent 20 years living in Kingston before moving to London, comes back to visit family every xmas, warned us of the dangers of hitch hiking
eits cafe
walking up and a ride w David, bobby’s coz
walking to prince valley
glasses for a drink and phone
meeting, laughing, smoking w omero from Oakland and Tazia from near Kingston
drinks and dinner: beans, greens, and pumpkin rice, perfection
sunset
beer and adieu
reading, reading, hearts, reading

~ 9 ~
up a little earlier, around 815
Ovid on the balcony
coffee and breakfast in the usual spot
acki and fish, plantains, coco bread
packing up and paying
peace
dj dale down the mountain
bob Marley museum
best dinner (fried chicken, beef stew, pork stew, or curried goat?) plus rum
two wedding episodes of friends

~ 10 ~
coffee, toast, and fruit on the balcony
Mahogany Beach
food and drink on James (same menu)
crazy dance boat party TV
Turtle Beach
souvenir shopping i
drinks on James
moms restaurant (fish stew)

~ 11 ~
coffee, toast, and fruit on the balcony
souvenir shopping ii
passage to passage to India (naan, South Indian chicken, chicken tikka masala)
chilling at KE
KE to Mo Bay
El Greco, cocktail on arrival
cocktails and joint on the balcony (Half Pint)
bellboy escort to room, J$400
atm, the old walk
1/2 lb ribs at pork pit
the walk back
another round

~ 12 ~
up around 8
finished Herzog
breakfast: one American, one Jamaican (mine is fried fish, greens, small banana, yucca, dumpling, and Nat’s French toast)
old white retired everywhere
blacks go J, whites go A
down to the street, rum up
packing, Brilliant Corners, checking out
smoke on the cliff side
delayed flight
walk down to the park shade
bk fries
taxi to airport
lines, lines, food court, hearts
exit row flight
chaos at CLT Continue reading

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winter 2016-2017 on last.fm

Screen Shot 2017-03-01 at 8.11.33 AM Continue reading

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Michael Pollan’s Food Rules

Eat food. Mostly plants. Not too much. Continue reading

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SAS 4

Stranger seem they who stomach the return when once intimate with their zenith of pleasure they had jettisoned away. Strangers to this strangeness seem stranger still, for they have yet to cast off.

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the spider on the sill—
a-swinging on her wheel—
a weave among the rain—attempting to be still.

the black, obedient dog—
our souls in analog—
a sniffing, listening creature wandering through the fog.

the fruit upon the table—
glowing brightly—nothing sable—
all yellow, orange, red—bleeding citrus staples.

the books with humble words—
in inky flocks like birds—
unfurling wise old wings that rhyme in lines of thirds.

the icy drinks in glass—
just buoyant bubbles, grass—
dissolving artsy minds in poetry with mass.

apes lounging in the kitchen—
some buying—selling—visions—
across the marketplace of psycho-stellar fission.

why not end it now—i say—fuck it—
let’s leave the seventh stranded in a lonely couplet! Continue reading

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honey, he’s a friend of mine

four Mexican beers down the hatch and not a single BART train left to catch.

on the long bus and walk home, stoned inspiration strikes my skull. it’s already 0300, but nothing can stop me. up and down the stairs, skulking through the hallways, dragging black monolith speakers, assembling the altar, feeding cables electricity, executing my addled genius silent as a mouse.

i jerk off and pass out.

in the morning, i check my phone in a bleary panic. 0900. i fall back asleep for a couple minutes and then check my phone again. 1100.

blended black tea dressed with a teaspoon of orange blossom honey and the slightest splash of half and half. that’s real fancy talk for a little drug called caffeine. my roommate partakes, and the music starts. breakfast consists of defrosted hash browns, fried eggs, and pork so good it must’ve come from the devil’s factory. Xanthe and i clink our mimosa flutes and chow down while watching Nicole Kidman and Tom Cruise take turns playing Thalia and Melpomene.

Cameron arrives looking hungover or depressed or both. i think nothing of it. the music goes on, the champagne flows. Ted is dead.

i never met Ted. i hug Cameron. i hold him. i don’t know what to say. i never met Ted even though Cameron insisted a hundred times that it needed to happen. i don’t know what to say. i wait for Cameron to say something, but he is stunned. he is a cauldron of emotion. i turn the music down or let it stop or something. i don’t know what to do or say. there is nothing to do or say. we drink.

the music returns. Cameron requests a dirge, so i let Entrance sing them Grim Reaper Blues. but i’m left by myself, so i scream and jump and play air guitar oblivious to the fact and consequence of death. i am dust.

Shannon. Lizz. Nico. Neko? Niko? Nico. Chris. Mark. Natalie. old friends, newer friends, lovers, sometime-lovers, one-time-lovers, all-time-lovers, all family, all drunk fucks.

my cousin hops on the decks and starts slinging cocaine funk delivered straight from the Rick James estate. it is 1980something, the snares reverberate, and disillusion is making itself incredibly comfortable. you can hear it in their voices. you can hear JoJo and Cheri and Candi and Maxi and Prince Rogers and Trent and Dave and Martin and Joshua and Charles, they all sound so coked up and dead. death. there’s that grim reaper again. where the fuck is Cameron? sobbing on the edge of my bed, locked up in my bedroom. on and off the phone. who is he talking to? margarita. big beer. drinking, so much drinking.

let the Golden Age begin. bleego hops on the decks and sonically programs artificial intelligence. it’s weird. on tv, Ziggy Stardust says good night mere moments before a bunch of space cadet apes wake up in the middle of bone-dry Africa. ladies and gentlemen we are floating in space.

how many pop culture references can i make before my writing becomes as worthless as the tobacco in a swisher sweet?

as the sun sets, i continue force-feeding everyone pop muzik, and then suddenly turn the music down low on a couple of whacked out loops to ask nobody in particular how long i could leave the loops loopingly looping looping looping looping looping looping looping looping until we all went crazy. somebody said something. something drinking something. and so i blast Kylie Minogue for a swan song.

power everything off! with tons of friends still partying, i say a thousand goodbyes and then fly away. best way to end a house party.

K to the Castro, two double illy espressos, and my love and i are back in the game. first up: dinner and drinks for her sister’s 21st birthday. Abigail rolls in wearing a sash like she’s in a beauty pageant and a face guaranteed to win it. radiant beauty of a birthday girl, she flutters around her long table of friends chatting about nothing and deflecting as many fireballs as she can.

sushi sake sushi sake sushi sake sushi sake sushi. that’s five sushi for every letter in the word “sushi” and four sake for every letter in the word “sake.” words words words words words.

the several hundred dollar bill settled, the crew bubbles around Kim “Abi” Kardashian as we make our way up Market toward extensive tracts of heavily eroded, uncultivable land with little vegetation. just kidding, we went to badlands. i withdrew $60 only to spend $50 instantly at the club on three entries (Abi, Natalie, me), three drinks (adios motherfucker for Abi and whiskey for Natalie and me), and then three more drinks (long island ice teas for the three of us). obviously we had not been drinking enough yet.

goodbye Castro, hello Cameron. he wanted love. Ted is dead. to Oakland then. goodbye Natalie. she storms off in a drunk, silent fit. i shrug.

down down Market.

stumbling drunk ass fuck into It’s Tops Coffee Shop, completely deserted except for the token pretty white girl waitress in her stupid 50s pink waitress dress. i drunkenly foam at the mouth some incoherence that amounts to “may i please just have a cup of coffee?” to which she responds by swinging ’round the counter and pouring out dregs of mud from both pitchers—the caffeinated and non caffeinated. in between drunken swallows, i murmur some philosophical question at her, but she’s tired and wants to go home, and that’s exactly how she answers. i understand, down the rest of the mud, and fly out the door.

down down Market.

i convince a cabbie to drive me to Civic Center so i can catch the last train east. so aware, so alive, i bolt out the doors onto 12th St. in Oakland, drunkenly rushing up the escalator and eating shit, scraping my stomach and foot (i discover later). i look around to see how embarrassed i should feel, but the lady behind me wears a face that says, “i’m just tired and want to go home,” so i shrug, pick myself up, and bolt anew. i race the two and whatever miles to Cameron’s house with cool Miles jazz billowing from the phone in my front pocket; i’m like a man on the run in a black & white French New Wave film from the 60s.

at the house, hugs and laughter and death and comfort and… guess what? more drinking! because, i must repeat myself, again, obviously: we had not been drinking enough. fernet and coke and tequila and non-vegetarian Chinese food and Courtney on guitar and sleep.

in the drunken haze of morning, i squeeze Courtney’s boob and immediately pull my hand back while apologizing. she laugh. i don’t feel too good about it. but then i wash a household of dishes and sweep the floor while Cameron details the stove. and when i fail to find a dustpan, i simply crouch down, scoop the pile of dust and kitchen debris with my hands, and throw it away. Cameron laughs, calling it the most humble thing he’s seen in years. i feel good about it.

a few moments later, we’re suspended like the helicopter string quartet between peace, humility, suffering, and passion.

“this is the worst one,” he says, “the worst death. i like nothing about this one.”

he wants to cry so badly but has already sobbed so much and the sobbing had solved nothing. i fight back laughter because the minute leading before we’d been saying some really silly, funny things and just roaring laughing. the giggles honor not even death. Continue reading

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selections from Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami

If a pistol appears in a story, eventually it’s got to be fired. Continue reading

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Dreamweapon

i just got back from Walgreens, where i picked up anteyebiotics-that-i-didn’t-think-were-actually-working-until-i-stopped-taking-them at Walgreens. when the white-haired lady behind the counter asked for 36¢, i made a dumb, apologetic face and almost handed her my debit card, but the crazy fat momma next to me picking up medicine for her high-strung fever-stricken five-year-old blonde boy wouldn’t have any of it. in an instant she pulled out one quarter, one penny, and one dime, i dealt bows and Thank Yous to both old ladies, and ducked out of the store, promising myself i would blog the instant i got home.

no matter that i’ve got one more blog post of the day (for work) to write, who wants to write about a money-hungry social gaming startup partnering up with a money-hungry fast food joint anyway?

yeah, i started full-time work super duper officially last monday. my job? write four medium-sized (250-1000 words) pieces monday through friday with a focus on social and location, especially Facebook, Twitter, Zynga, and Foursquare (the biggest social network in the world, the most popular noisemaker in the world, a company that somehow tricks millions of people into spending real money on 100 pixel-sized images of corn, and a service for telling people where you are in the world every second of every day). technology is weird.

BUT I’M GETTING PAID FOR WRITING!

can you believe it? i can’t believe it. this is always how it sounds when i explain what i do for work: yeah i write for this small tech blog that you never heard of and follow facebook andsocialstuffa ndit’sno treallyexc itingandn oidon’tgetp aidverymuc handyou ‘ reri ghtit sound skind of l am e but I GET. PAID. FOR. WRITING. such happiness.

also, i can work from home or wherever i want, for the most part. a typical schedule for me:

2330: finish first story, set to publish for 0100
0000: sleep
0600: first alarm
0615: second alarm
0630: third and final alarm
0700: wake up
0800: publish second story
0830: dick around online, eat a lavish breakfast
1000: publish third story
1130: dick around a whole bunch, maybe go for a drive
at some point: publish fourth story

i swear to god, if i cut down on my dicking around time i’d only be working five, maybe six, hours a day. still, i’m usually done pretty early, which is nice. oh, because i only get six hours of sleep a night a most (and no i don’t care if you think that’s a lot), i usually try to take the longest possible naps i can once i finish all my work. grizzlies need their sleep.

yesterday was a bit of an intense Facebook day for me because, after i spent about an hour of my morning watching this live stream from the company’s Palo Alto headquarters of CEO Mark Zuckerberg unveiling some totally amazing awesome life-changing new features, i went to see The Social Network with Alicia. it was a pretty entertaining movie but, even based solely what i saw from that shitty stream, i can confirm that the film Zuckerberg is a completely different thing than the real Zuckerberg. this guy’s a brilliant and awkward nerd, not a snarky backstabbing asshole. well, maybe not entirely. my favorite comment on the movie comes from Zuckerberg himself: “I just wished that nobody made a movie of me while I was still alive.” i feel you, man. these filmmakers gotta chill out. there are plenty of stories from the past that haven’t been made into great films yet.

after a coffee intermission, Alicia and i made it a double feature experience by watching Gummo on her laptop back at the apartment. before i say anything, just watch this clip:

here’s my synthesis of the Wikipedia article for the movie because i don’t know how to express ideas in words: 1997 American experimental independent film collage of unrelated vignettes depicting the hopeless, nihilistic lives of the poor residents of a small Ohio town that had been previously stricken by a tornado. shot with primarily non-actors in traditional pre-planned 35mm, along with 8mm, 16mm, Polaroid, VHS, and Hi-8, the film explores drug abuse, violence, homicide, vandalism, mental illness, poverty, profanity, homosexuality, transexuality, homophobia, sexual abuse, sexism, suicide, grief, prostitution, animal cruelty, euthanasia and racism. FUN! FUN! FUN!

i’m just amazed that it has a 34% on Rotten Tomatoes while The Social Network has a 97%. critics are fucking stupid. i’d say the movies are about even, 4/5 to each.

this is Alicia week! on monday i visited her at work with my laptop so i could keep her company AND kick back some brews AND write half of my tuesday stories AND give her a ride home AND chill a little in her new apartment to the sweet sounds of Neil Young. crazily enough, i ran into this guy Richard, who used to be part-owner and main waiter at a this delicious Japanese restaurant downtown called JoJi’s. the business got sold and completely changed a couple years ago and it had been even longer since i ate there, so it was a complete shock to me when Alicia called out “Richard!” to this white scruffy dude wearing a flat cap (apparently also known as a sixpence, scally cap, salmon hat, Dai cap, or Jeff cap) and sauntering over to the jukebox. as he turned back to Alicia, i had my moment of realization and (kind of uncharacteristically) pointed at him and shouted, “hey! i know you!!!” he was understandably taken aback (probably because he figured he would’ve recognized someone that looks like me) until i explained to him everything.

at first he couldn’t remember my family, but it slowly started coming back to him–how my dad always explores SF, how he’d always change the tranquil Japanese music to Latin music when my mom came because he knew she was Nicaraguan, the one time he accidentally charged my dad $600 instead of $60. i remember he was such a character, he made this tiny restaurant that fit maybe 15 people explode with Life. he had an endless repertoire of stories (you couldn’t tell which were real), he spoke with unmatchable cadence and wit, and, perhaps most important of all, he understood It. he is not one of those people you see going through life dead. he is Alive.

are you alive? Continue reading

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