[1/30/2022> here's the 2nd ½ of 2004, continued from the previous post w/ a gap inbetween where we already posted R journal from Puerto Rico + sum other overlap w/ what we already posted in 5cense]
July 24, 2004– NYC
Last weekend [L] came to stay with us. It added an interesting perspective, having a deaf houseguest. As we took her around the city, you really realized how much you rely on hearing. She is able to function very well in the hearing world, she reads lips really well, and can talk really well, its just taxing and takes a lot of energy. The biggest thing though is I can’t imagine living in a world without music. We ended up not going to the Siren Music festival, for obvious reasons.
Thursday, [Bedder-½] and I ran the “Run Hit Wonder”. Bedder-½ ran the 5K with So Young and Becky, I ran the 10K. All the pre-race stuff was a pain, and even once it got going, the first 1-2 miles were spent weaving in and out of people and on the grass on the side of the road. Flock of Seagulls was right at the start. But it seemed only the singer was from the original band. He had long hair and was wearing a baseball hat. I ran close enough that I could’ve high fived him. The race started on 110 st. so the first thing you hit was the hill which was pretty dumb. Then around the park for the 10K. The 5K did the shorter loop twice or something dumb. I’ve been running the full loop once a week, so it wasn’t that big of a deal, but I was trying to push myself more than I usually do. It was hard to tell what my pace was as they weren’t reading it off, except for the first mile which took over 10 minutes. The next band, Tommy Tutone, wasn’t til the other side of the park, and they weren’t playing 867-5309 so I hardly recognized them. Started to get hot and tired the last few miles and didn’t finish very strong. My time was 48 or 49 minutes, can’t remember exactly, except that my average pace was 7:56 so at least it was under 8:00, although I would’ve liked it to be closer to 7. Maybe I’ll try running another one. The planning was a fiasco. It was really crowded at the end and there was no water and it was hard to tell where to return the chips. But managed to meet up with Bedder-½ and So Young and Becky, and then went to Morningside park where Tone-Loc was playing. Ran into Roger which was awkward since So Young broke up with him after their trip to Peru. Ate bagels and drank water and watched Tone-Loc, and then Devo came on which was rad. But we only watched 3 songs because we knew we were seeing them the next night. The subways were packed with runners. Roger ended up tagging along with us since he was going downtown, and decided to tell us his whole side of the story whether we wanted to hear it or not. What a loser. What was So Young thinking? Not that she doesn’t have her quirks, but she could do so much better.
Seems like most of our female friends in NYC go through this game. Whenever we talk to Sue Rae she is back and forth with that lunatic Louis. She must have low self-esteem or something. Or people getting to be our age, just start to feel lonely and just need to be with somebody I guess. Jack also broke up with Gaby, he came out with us and Laurel and So Young, but he is just too boyish for So Young’s tastes. And he’s an odd character. He just goes on about pirate ships in Madagascar, etc. and only as a side note to Bedder-½ on the way home on the subway says that there is a good chance he is leaving NY and taking a job with the Discovery channel. Which considering that he is all gung ho about putting together this band with us and even has the practice space and we are supposed to meet this other Ian guy who is also in the band… its odd. According to Max, that project is all a go and Max is coming out in August or September to talk with Comedy Central. But who knows.
I am working on SleepingFish 0.5. A bit difficult since I got fed up with our cable and internet provider Time Warner and told them to take a hike and thought we’d live by pirating wireless, but it’s a bit of a pain. You have to go by the window or down to the courtyard, and keep scanning for an open channel and its rather intermittent, so my correspondence is sketchy and I am way behind. But I have some good submissions. Also working on P.S. At Least We Died Trying..., Sent the draft to Wendy and she just responded this a.m. with final edits (most of which I can’t address) so that’s pretty much a wrap. Peter Markus is in town, but haven’t managed to meet with him. Hopefully this week. And working slowly but surely on Retrazos, the project with Carlos. But not doing as much writing as I would like to be.
Had an interview with Artnet, went well, but in the end they said they wanted somebody in the inner circle of the art world. Which definitely isn’t me, I told them I would be Walter Robinson’s wing man but not the guy that’s going to all the cocktail parties and hob-knobbing with the rich and famous. Oh well. It was low-paying anyway, less than 40K. Went to lunch last week with Kinneret, Biswa, Cora, etc. Same old shit going on Napster. Glad I got out of there, boring as my job is now. Cora mentioned that EMI might have a tech writing job coming up. On top of everything, I need to be looking for a job. Have to keep trying. Its supposed to rain this weekend, so should make it easier.
Last night we went to see Devo, Stellastarr* and Yeah Yeah Yeahs… it had been pouring all day, but the tickets said rain or shine. So tromped through the rain over to summerstage in Central Park. Stellastarr* was awesome. We had pretty good spots since not that many people showed up. But the umbrellas were annoying. They made it so you couldn’t see. Its just water. But Stellstarr was great, his voice is on live (hers maybe not). And one point it was a complete downpour, it was awesome. It stopped raining by the time Yeah Yeah Yeahs came on. And despite the fact that it wasn’t raining some people still had their umbrellas up, so we had to throw shit and yell at them to get them down, but still some people left them up. We were strategically next to a metal gate so Bedder-½ could stand on it to see. Karen O was wearing a colorful skimpy outfit that looked like a Twiggy-esque one piece bathing suit. She was wearing a plastic see through raincoat that she kept taking on and off and wrapping around herself. She is a character. Great facial expressions. Make-up that was smeared all over her face. Great screaming, but not so good when she actually has to sing. Then Devo. Oh my god, these guys are so old and geeky. It was awesome. They played the same movie intro and three songs as the night before, wearing yellow raincoats and their trademark hats. Eventually they stripped down to black onion skin running shorts and knee-pads and black t-shirts (which considering they had all put on a bit of weight, was a bit disturbing). But the most disturbing thing, was when the guitar player started humping on his guitar to one song, he was thrusting so hard, that his penis and balls came loose and were flopping around in the wind for all to see. Not a pleasant sight. I am sure he had to of noticed, seemed intentional because he kept doing it. I think Bedder-½ has been scarred for life. But they were awesome, at least initially. By the encores it was a bit old, and when he went into that stupid boy character for “it’s a beautiful world” with a stupid sarcastic voice, it ruined it. We wanted to leave before the encores, and we would have been wise too, because literally the second Devo left the stage it started pouring, not just raining, but a complete and utter downpour. They had blocked all the exits so everyone had to get funneled out through one small gate, and nobody could even see where they were going. It was utter pandemonium. It took forever to get out of there, shuffling our feet in the puddles and huddled under a sea of umbrellas. It was surreal. And finally into the freedom of the flooded central park. Walked through the park in the pouring rain. It was fun. We were soaked like drowned rats when we got home.
Aug 7, 004– NYC
Last weekend we went to Curiosa. For a big fest, and considering all the bigger concerts like Lolapalooza (sp?) were canceled, it was a good time. Of course we were adventurous and walked there. Not as easy as it seemed. Took the subway up to Spanish Harlem, then through the east side across the bridge around 102nd street, just like where we used to go running when we lived on the east side. Getting around Randall Island was not easy. Traversed through sketchy abandoned areas with parked cars of people doing who knows what and baseball fields and tailgaters just drinking and doing whatever. Why fly to Puerto Rico when you can just go to Randall Island? We eventually found the venue. We missed the first couple of acts but it didn’t matter. We saw enough of Auf de Maur to confirm my suspicions of what I expected I would think of her. She sucked. Her arrogance exudes. We also caught some of Mogwai, a lot more raucous than I expected. Not bad. Then we saw Thursday. Last year on Randall Island at the warped tour I never got a chance to see them, but they were the most interesting band we interviewed. They were pretty good for emo, a lot of positive energy. His mannerisms are strange and feminine. The nice thing about having 2 stages as you don’t spend too much sitting around. We went back to the main stage in time to catch the Rapture. We were lounging on the grass not too far from the stage, which was nice to not have to stand like cattle. They were awesome. Better than what I remember of seeing them before. For Interpol we got closer. They were good, but not much to look at. Carlos D, the bass player is the only interesting character, the singer especially is just a deadbeat, not much of leader. The new songs they played sounded pretty good, looking forward to the album. Then went over the second stage for Muse. They fucking rocked! And we were really close since everyone assumes the second stage is for the losers. I don’t know why Muse is not more popular but it’s a good thing. The main guys is very talented, on piano, guitar and vocals. Very operatic, very tight. A compelling sense of urgency. Lots of changes and variety, from falsetto yodeling over arpeggio piano riffs, to death metal licks. Then back to the main stage for the Cure. We just lounged on the grass. Crazy to think Its been 20 years since I saw them last, and that he has been playing and touring for 25 years, pretty much nonstop. He’s all fat, reminiscent of some pompous king like Marlon Brando in Island of Dr. Moreau. Still sounding good. Getting out of there wasn’t half bad as we left before it was over, bussed into he city to the subway.
Met with Peter Markus last week. Interesting character, kind of spacey hippie, or seemed like an ex-hippie. He’s in Brooklyn for the summer, teaching at Gotham. Not sure how he gets by. His wife stays at home with the kids. His first book Good, Brother, looked pretty well made. We talked pretty generally, not about specifics. He supposedly has friends or what not involved with printing, etc. but I imagine I’m pretty much on my own and have started to do some research. Asked some of the Contemporary Press folks at work, but they are more into pulp trade books. My collaboration with Wendy Sorin (P.S. At Least We Died Trying to Make You in the Backseat of a Taxi) is more or less finished, that just needs to be printed as well. Other than that, working mostly on SleepingFish 0.5. Receiving some good prose poems, hopefully headed more in that direction. Been taking A LOT of pictures. Pretty much every Friday I have been weaving through the city taking shots of graffiti and reflections in glass, and other abstractions. Bedder-½ and I have been going out and getting some shots. Last weekend went all through the LES and Chinatown, got some great shots. Will use them in SleepingFish, and maybe have a photo-spread of anonymous street art to go along with it. Going to PS1 today. [see our write-up on P.S.1 + 5 Ptz, which was perhaps our 1st post on the 5cense.com URL]
[R bedder-½ on th roof of 5 ptz, pic not inklooted in above write-up]
Speaking of Curiosa, Marco and I and crew performed a heist of Lisa’s Curious George doll while she was away on vacation. We took pictures of him around town in various states of debauchery and then sent emails from a “curious george” yahoo account, chronicling his adventures, about how he got sick of sitting in her cube, and decided to venture out on his own. Lisa was lame about it, though, no sense of humor. Oh well, that was like the most exciting thing to happen at the Princeton Review, the best thing is just that I’m getting to know the West Village. Not many other options right now.
Went to Nobu last night. I guess life is not that rough. We are getting sick of our doorman building. Hopefully will move downtown come September or October.
[the next week or 2 of entries/pics hanging out in Costa Rica we already posted]
October 7, 2004– NYC
shit, cant even remember the last time i wrote a journal entry, probably when we went to costa rica. its october now, we are moving down to the village in a week. We oscillated, saw some places we didnt like or that were just too much, looked all around, east village, chelsea, etc. finally got carlos involved and he found us this place on Thompson street, a block from Washington Square. Its a bit smaller than what we have, but its two rooms, and well, its in the village and we don't have to talk to the doormen and its a 6-story walkup so we are getting extra exercise.
Got SleepingFish issue 0.5 out this past weekend. It was a lot of work, and I have been swamped just to keep up with correspondence, but I am pretty happy with the result. I got a lot of great contributions, both prose and visual work. I hope it is appreciated as much as I like it. In any event, its just good to have that out to not worry about it anymore so now I can get out P.S. At Least We Died Trying To Make You in the Backseat of a Taxidermist out and finish Retrazos with Carlos. And then publish Markus's The Singing Fish. I've had some more publications lately, another in Diagram (3rd one), Opium Magazine, Eclectica, another in Generator, and some other obscure ones.
Lisa left Princeton Review, so things are a bit different. Actually having to work more and assume more responsibility. We'll see how it goes. Hopefully I’ll get back into the swing of writing in my journal more and also writing more. I think I’m tired of the logistics of managing writing and want to just do more writing. I have been dreaming too, so need to get more in the habit of writing in my dream journal.
[front + back cover of Sleepingfish 0.5]
October 18, 2004– NYC (West Village!)
Here we are. Moved in. Standing in our slopity office. Steam hissing through the pipes. Sun coming through the 6th floor window. Doves landing on the fire escape. Bedder-½ has already left for work but since I only have a 6 minute walk now, I can leave later! More time to write. More to be inspired by. New scenery. Change.
I was frantically trying to get out SleepingFish issue 0.5 before the move. Had more requests during that week, so was printing up more copies of that and others as well as packing and just being in a state of limbo knowing you are going to move. Impermanence. But Friday finally came along. Went down to pick up the u-haul while Bedder-½ dealt with the asshole building people. Paying all this money just to move out. Laying down masonite. Leaving deposits. We are so glad to be out of there. I came back with the U-Haul, parked in a red zone under scaffolding with all this construction going on. Dozens of workers waiting in line at the backdoor entrance at 56th street. The watchman was some old guy who could barely see our hear, slow as molasses. He wanted me to get a badge and stuff to go in the building. He couldn’t comprehend that I lived in the building and yes, I was moving myself. Who’s moving? I am. Who’s moving you? I am. But which apartment is moving? Mine. Which moving company is moving you? You’re looking at him.
Bedder-½ watched the U-haul while I shuttled loads. Most of the time was spent waiting for the service elevator with padding. You’re not allowed to take the other one. I would wait and wait, up to 15-20 minutes and finally it would come down with rich tenants and I would just push my way in much to their dismay. I’m paying hundreds of dollars to move, the least they could do is reserve the elevator. Then through the maze of underground tunnels all the way to 56th street. Then wait for the guy to take me back up the 10 feet in the service elevator to street level. We were probably done with Parc Vendome at noon. Then we drove straight down Broadway, right through Times Square. Drizzling, but no pouring rain like they had predicted. And down to the heart of the village!
There wasn’t a parking spot in front, but there was one in front of a fire hydrant a quarter of a block from the door. Could be worse. Then carried all of our worldly possessions up 6 flights of stairs. It was therapeutic. Muscles straining, arms clenching the boxes and furniture, calves and quads pumping up the stairs. Over and over and over. Drenched with sweat. The stairwell wet from my dripping. I thought about the potential energy, the mass of all of our belongings multiplied by 6 x 15 = 90 feet, times the gravitational constant. All that potential stored in our 6th floor den above the village. The desk was the hardest part. My legs are bruised from where that was banging against my legs. Had to rest at each stairwell. It was an insane workout. But its all up here!
Then took the U-haul back and bickered with some beaut for all incidentals they stiff you with. They advertise 19.95 a day and it ends up being 79. Then get on the subway. My clothes, even my jeans, completely soaked through with sweat. Normally I would be going uptown on the A or C train this time of day, but now I was going downtown. To stay for the night! We cleaned up and went to “Cuba” which is the restaurant below us, and it fucking rocks. Amazing Cuban food. So much shit right in our immediate vicinity. We continued to unpack and put things in their place. Put the futon bed back together and hooked up the TV and watched the 3rd season of Strangers with Candy.
Next morning we were back at it. Going to K-mart, Bed Bath and Beyond, Gothic furniture craft, etc. buying shit to accommodate our shit. Bought a big bureau at Gothic and borrowed their dolly and wheeled it through the village street fair.
[bedroom/living rm of our 250 sq ft apt on Thompson + W 3rd st... so small u can't really get a photo of it]
So yah, more shopping on Saturday and Sunday. More lugging furniture on the subway and up the stairs. Not that we got a lot of stuff, just targeted things to make use of space, racks to hang the pots, hooks, shelves, etc. We made pretty efficient use of the space.
Saturday night we ate Shabu Shabu which was unbelievable. Less than a block from our house. I could eat there every night. We are constantly amazed at what we have within a five or ten minute walk of our apartment. We found an awesome NY sports club that is opening up Nov. 1, that is only 3 blocks away. We just lucked out in all regards, so Singha (which yes, we did bring early to the apartment to “purify” it) is doing his work.
And now work is only a five minute walk, and I am actually having to do work. Manage all these freelance writers for this Apache jct project. Now that we have settled in, its time to look for something better. At least look.
November 3, 2004– NYC
Last night, Bush was re-elected, more or less. Its not for certain, but even still, the fact that even close to a majority of Americans would even vote for him makes me extremely ashamed to be American. Before we could blame shit on the government, but now we have no excuse. He is back by popular demand. It is completely incredulous, I fail to comprehend the mindset of the average american and feel I do not belong here at all, and that I do not want be associated with this country in any respect. I am just really disappointed in people.
Bedder-½ feels the same way and we are seriously considering jumping this ship, problem is to where? We are born into this world with boundaries, with only so many places we can reasonably go and LIVE. Mexico maybe. Europe. There are a lot of places I would live. I would live in most places over the US. We'll see. Right now the shock is hitting me and I am completely depressed and overwhelmed with my inability to comprehend or change all that is wrong with this country.
Hanging in here at TPR. Not a lot of options, I've looked. Working hours to get some overtime. And manage to get a lot of writing done at this job, and the people around me here are interesting enough. It could be worse I guess. Living in NY you feel detached from American sentiment. But fact is we still live under American law, and we are "American" to the rest of the world. Shameful.
Had two pieces published in Tarpaulin Sky. James Wagner (one of the founding editors of 3rd Bed) gave a promising review of O, Vozque Pulp in his Esther Press review site. Working on Ma(i)ze Tassel Retrazos, almost done, just the final few pieces to tie everything together. I feel I have almost found my voice.
We've already acclimatized to village living. Saw the halloween parade a few days ago. Definitely living a sheltered life now, no subways, 5 minute walk to work, living and working in the village. What else? Boston won the world series. That was hopeful. Detroit and Boston, two underdogs that defied the trend of spending mucho dinero on big name players. If only reality mimicked sports.
[the next week or 2 in Arizona and New Mexico we also already blogged about on 5cense in this 4-part Southwest roadtrip travelogue]
[airplane graveyard in Tucson]
[White Sands, NM]
[petroglyphs in New Mexico]
[abandoned bldg in Jerome, AZ]
December 25, 2004 – NYC
Woke up at 5 a.m. Maybe I was expecting Santa Claus to come down the fire escape. I’m about to go back to my warm bed. Just couldn’t sleep. Realized last night, on our anniversary, as we were reminiscing, that I don’t keep the journal I used to keep, so if we ever needed to go back and pinpoint a fact, we couldn’t. Not that what I write in here is factual. But nevertheless, good to document as memory is hazy.
Last night we went to Blue Water Grill for dinner. It was very nice. I usually don’t like those fancy places, but it was enjoyable and with fish like that, can’t go wrong. And of course the company. 8 years. Who would’ve thunk. She is sweet. A cub. Here’s to 8 more. After that we went to Dizzy’s, one of the new jazz clubs in Lincoln Center. Had a nice view of Central Park. Cyrus Chestnutt was playing, it was decent.
Working backwards. Yesterday, went to the art store and bought a bunch of supplies. Anniversary or xmas present I guess you could think of that way. I got Bedder-½ a 10 week pottery class starting in January. So she, we, got me, us, supplies. To make art. Started because yesterday I woke up and was trying to get ideas for Peter Markus’s book cover. I started blowing ink all over. I was working in index cards. I like constraint. Discrete art. Also got accepted into Post Road yesterday. A good way to end 2004. I also kind of got accepted to 3rd Bed, if they have enough money to publish the next issue.
I am tired. Will write more when I wake back up.
Now its evening and I am full. Bedder-½ and I just got through watching It’s a Wonderful Life and we have the bed half out. She is writing out her goals for 2005. We are bloated from a wonderful eggplant parmesan she made, and then eggnog and cookies and now sambuca. So I guess I could be writing out my predictions or goals. Or what I visualize happening in 2005. January of 2005 I will publish P.S. At Least We Died Trying to Make You in the Backseat of a Taxi. The final touches will be made on Peter Markus’ The Singing Fish and will be sent to the printers. By February 2005 this we will be printed, as will Maize Tassel Retrazos as long as I am not waiting on others, such as Post Road to publish individual pieces first. I will hold off on that as long as possible. In the meantime I will be working on finalizing Poste Restante and also sending stories from that out. Meanwhile, In January of February I will find a more tolerable day job. Or look for international work, but that kind of hinges on Bedder-½’s next move, but would definitely like to be living in another country by the end of 2005.
March 2005 I will start taking submissions for SleepingFish 0.75. Will start trying to slowly start building that up, possibly even getting a distributor. By June will have that ready and send that to printers (no more stapling). Around this time also send Poste Restante to get printed. Get both of these out by the end of summer. Two other projects to finish by the end of 2005, will put a CD of my old music with a booklet to go with it. Will also put together a book of Kevin’s work. And what ever else comes way. And will also finish rewriting Our Mother the Fish. Is that a lot to ask? So this is what will be published under Calamari press by the end of 2005.
- P.S. At Least We Died Trying [yes]
- Singing Fish by Peter Markus [yes]
- Maize Tassel Retrazo [yes]
- SleepingFish 0.75 [yes]
- Poste Restante [yes, but 2006]
- Santa Cruz Session (CD of “greatest hits” and book) [nope, put out the unheard tapes in 2017]
- (book by another writer)—[yes, Land of the Snow Men by Norman Lock]
- collaboration with Bedder-½ [nope, not til we formed Sound Furies]
- Our Mother the Fish [yes, but not til 2008]
- (one other unnamed chapook of visual poetry or hybrid).[nope]
Ten books in 2005. Will be interesting to come back and read this to see what I accomplished. Of course, these are just writing goals. Will also have a lot of fun doing it, take a few international trips, including a trip to Africa [this didn't happen until 2007]. And will save money and be living in a better country by the end of next year. And will be happily celebrating our 9th anniversary next xmas and our relationship will be better than ever and Bedder-½ will be happier and not worry so much. She is writing out her goals next to me on the futon as we speak. I am sure hers are more detailed and less vague than mine. One of my goals is to support her in her goals. And we will both be just as healthy if not healthier. Still working out 4-5 times a week at minimum. Eat meat less than 5 or 10 times in the whole year, as the situation arises. What the hell, maybe I will even run the NY marathon in November. If I am in a position to do so (time-wise), otherwise I could wait til my 40th birthday. And I guess my other goal would be to write in this journal at least once a week?
[ ... onword to 2005 in next post ]