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29 avr 2026

Morrissey

Top of the Pops

17 avr 2008

Fever dreams

     Before I forget, this is the kind of dream you have if you fall asleep at 9pm:

  • At JCrew run into Dani and Barrie, who invite me over to Barrie's house for her birthday party-- I try to get out of it, but end up going. We go to new jersey, and walk down a long suburban road at night. I help set up, and then realized I have to go home-- have trouble getting clear instructions from Barrie's oafish brother-- slightly smarter father bickers with him but gives better instructions. There's an obelisk in the direction I'm headed
  • At the fork in the road that takes me to the train station (LIRR?), I run into Ally and another BR person, who marvel over a large marble column that has fallen across the road. It looks like something from London, or Paris, grecian style, with inscriptions and carved flourishes. I think it fell on 9/11
  • There is a dinner party (earlier in dream?) for Terri that I attend with my mother, who gives a teary speech about the importance of family, referring more to Kevin, Maria and their children (family by default rather than blood)
  • At home, I receive a text message from a woman who introduces herself saying she is my father's nurse-- he is at home, bedridden, and may die very soon-- it seems like she means in matter of days or hours. I am instantly at home, in my parents room, my dad half sleeping on the bed-- I lay across his chest and cry while he says he wants to pat me on the back one more time (like  he did when I was little, to help me fall asleep). I tell him it's not once more. For some reason in the office that was my study, there are specialized packages of cigarettes-- gag gifts, with Adam and Roberta's pictures on them.
  • Later, Dad seems to be feeling better, comes downstairs, though we make him lie on the couch in the front living room; as the dream ends, we are preparing to see Macbeth with Peter. This last section of the dream is both horribly surreal and vivid at the same time.

28 mar 2008

Things I've Learned as a Barfly

1) How to take a whiskey shot without gagging, and actually enjoy the burn in my stomach.
2) That the guy who washes dishes and cleans up is a "bar-back," and that light-up promotional signs are called "neons."
3) The joy of beer that tastes like pomegranate, or chocolate, or has hints of lemon, or even an aftertaste of cannabis
4) Knowing that I'm going in the wrong direction while looking for a liquor store, because it has to be more than 200 yards from the church I've just passed.

Other, far more insightful and interesting lists to come.

23 mar 2008

N is for Neville

music nerdery, part infinity

So I did this meme almost exactly two years ago, and thought I'd see how things had changed in the last 24 months. I may write things of greater consequence later on tonight, if I don't pass out instead.

Open iTunes/iPod or Windows Media Player to answer the following. Go to your library. Answer, no matter how embarrasing it is.

How many songs: 3894 (that's almost 2k more than I had in '06, but it feels kind of paltry for a person who claims to be such a music nerd. I've been making up for it lately, though. God bless torrents.

Sort by song title
First Song: "A-Punk"-- Vampire Weekend (let's not start on that, shall we?)
Last Song: "9 Fingers on You"-- Shudder to Think.  If you're not familiar with this band, I suggest you go here.  (/shameless self-promotion)

Sort by time:
Shortest Song: "Fishstick Gumbo"--Man Man 0:04. I just downloaded this today, so I don't even think I've listened to it yet.
Longest Song: "Santaland Diaries"-- David Sedaris 32:51. Not a song, but I'm counting it because David Sedaris is the shit. And this reading includes his uncanny BIllie Holiday impression.

Sort by album:
First Song: "Come Together"-- The Beatles, Abbey Road.
Last Song: "Untitled 8"-- Sigur Ros, ()

Top Five Most Played Songs:
1. "Wraith Pinned to the Mist and Other Games"-- Of Montreal (I'm still moping about this becoming the Outback Steakhouse theme song.)
2. "Casimir Pulaski Day "--Sufjan Stevens
3. "Stars and Sons"-- Broken Social Scene
4. "Glosoli"-- Sigur Ros
5. "Lover's Spit"--Broken Social Scene

Type in:
"sex", how many songs come up? 8
"death", how many songs come up? 23
"love", how many songs come up? 149
"you", how many songs come up? 386

Addendum: I had to note that right as I started this post, I put my itunes on shuffle, and almost every song that's come up has been one of extreme nostalgic/sentimental significance to me. Clearly, my little Dell has evolved into an autonomous, mind-reading super computer that will one day rise up and absorb my brain into the gaping maw of its DVD drive. Ooohhhkay, clearly sleep needs to happen immediately. I'll leave you to mull over the crazy.

22 jan 2008

For the record

I spent most of the day feeling lonely, and angry, and hopeless, particularly in regards to my love life. But then a night out clarified several things for me-- it's amazing how good leaving the apartment is for my state of mind. My conclusions, abeit influenced by three beers and a whiskey shot:

1) I tend to idealize K's relationship with his girlfriend, but Karen never fails to remind me that it's far from perfect.

2) As much as I love the guy, he is absolutely not what I'm looking for in a boyfriend. Certain pieces are there, but not the whole package. It's easy to ignore the bad parts, but luckily the nature of our relationship made that impossible.

3) That being said, the way things ended with us hurt me quite a bit, and has, and has at my worst moments made me question my ability to have any sort of long-term romantic attachment. I.e., if I couldn't make it work with K, who is the first person I've opened up to in literally years, how can I ever make it work? And since opening up was as hurtful as it was rewarding, why would I want to open up again?

I want nothing more than to meet someone, fall for them, and have it work. Not forever, but for some legitimate period of time. My inability to trust is in constant conflict with what I think is a natural inclination towards long-term, serious relationships. It's so hard for me to be open, but I think maybe it has to be a top priority, if I'm ever going to find what I'm looking for.

11 déc 2007

N is for Neville

Spleen et ideal

One of the first things my parents tried to impress upon me when I got fired was that looking back, it would not seem like such a catastrophe. That it was one relatively small bump in the road over the course of a long career. They weren't trivializing what had happened, only I think trying to help me put it in perspective during those first few days I spent essentially in shock.

I've often repeated this sentiment, to myself, to others-- as if to prove that I am levelheaded enough to already possess in part this perspective that is supposed to come years down the line.  As if to say, This awful thing happened, but I know it will be okay, even if it might not seem that way right now. But I don't really believe that. And while it may be true, that this was not the end of the world, it was the end of a world, for me.

When I lost my job, I lost an intrinsic sense of myself. There were many factors contributing to my being let go, but I know that the primary reason was due to my own shortcomings. I had known for some time that I was not performing as well as I needed to, partly due to being overwhelmed and overworked, but also due to the way in which I reacted to these things, which was almost to ignore their urgency. I did not face the challenges head on, but instead avoided until I was forced to scramble and scrape by each deadline. I knew this needed to change in order for me to succeed, but I didn't effect that change. I arrogantly assumed that my position was far more secure than it was in reality-- that my assets outweighed my liabilities. And this turned out not to be the case.

And this all sounds very academic, very removed, when I am trying, for once to not be so removed, in a public space, from what has happened. As I said, losing my job felt like losing myself-- previous to this I had always thought of myself above all as someone who succeeded, who was gifted, and who never failed to thrive in her "professional" endeavors. But in falling short, so far short as to be asked to leave my company, i could no longer claim this. And very little has happened since then to restore this faith in myself, this knowledge of myself as someone who, by-and-large, did not fail at things. Who had a sense of direction and purpose. I don't have any of those things any more. I've become the person I used to scorn, the drifter, who talked in vague sentences about goals and plans.

The job I have now only reinforces this feeling; hardly rocket science, and yet I struggle with it, and am fairly certain I will not be offered a permanent position. Perhaps it's because my brain just doesn't work this way, doesn't lend itself to this type of work--and while I come back to this time and time again, I also resist it each and every time. How unamerican, to fail at something, even if you put your mind to it.

Months have now gone by and I'm still unable to throw myself into the job hunt the way I need to, and the two dozen or so jobs (if that) I've applied to haven't even resulted in an interview. I'd always depended on the steady success of my academic/professional life to compensate for the disappointment I've often felt towards my personal life. Now neither is satisfying, and it often feels unlikely that either will take a turn for the better in the very near future. I'm cringing at how passive this all sounds-- I should take charge of my life, rather than let it happen to me. But I've lost my agency, and the idea that agency will get me what I want out of life. I look at my friends, most of them thriving, and wonder why and when exactly I stopped being like them. I can never go back to being the person I was before all this happened, that untested arrogance.  What happened has shaken me to my core, and it's hard to know exactly how to put my world back together again; or rather, how to create a new one.

15 aoû 2007

Camp isn't just a row of tents.

So I was looking, as you do, at music videos on YouTube, and it occurred to me that the video in question (which I'll get to shortly), was unbelievably, fantastically gay. As camp as it gets. And then I thought of how many of my favorite videos are similarly examples of the HoYay. And then I thought I'd share the best of them with you.

19 juil 2007

"Listening too long, to one song"

As long as I can remember, when something caught my fancy-- a book, a movie--especially if it put me in a good mood, I would want to experience it over and over again. My mother could never understand this impulse, but I can tell you it hasn't let up yet. I still re-read the two Bridget Jones novels once or twice a year. I've seen Velvet Goldmine and Bend It Like Beckham more times than I can count. And certain songs will essentially be on repeat for weeks at a time. So I thought I'd share a list of Music that Gets Stuck in My Craw, with a little sampler at the end, courtesy of last.fm. (note: I know this journal has been low on actual content lately (if you even care)-- but most of the substantive writing I've done in the last few months has not been fit for public consumption.) Enjoy!

  •  

08 juin 2007

le cahier du cinema

Because I owe you an update, but don't feel like discussing what's been going on in my life, I give you a brief list of the movies I've watched recently, and my opinion of them, in fifty words or less.

  •   Old Joy (dir. Kelly  Reichardt): A painfully apt, understated look at friendship and the tendency to cling to faded bonds and identities in the face of monumental change. Meditative and at times, dull-- you definitely need to be in the right mood to watch this one.
  • Bande à part (dir. Jean Luc "Cinéma" Godard): This has been on my list since I saw The Dreamers my freshman year of college. The robbery plot line is a little hazy and hard to follow, but the famous "Madison" dance and race through the Louvre are absolutely exhilarating to watch. If you like the nouvelle vague, then check this out for sure.
  • The Secret Life of Words (dir. Isabel Coixet): Oof. This one is quite a downer, but Sarah Polley and Tim Robbins are so good in it, that it's oddly a joy to watch. The secondary characters are a little sketchily developed, but I liked what I knew of them, and almost wanted there to be a second film focusing just on them-- in particular Javier Cámara's flamboyant chef and the timid oceanographer.
  • Blade Runner: The Director's Cut (dir. Ridley Scott): Maybe I had to see this one before I watched basically every science fiction film that came afterwards, because this one didn't wow me the way I thought it would. I can see how it was incredibly influential on later movies, but I found myself pretty bored-- and the romance storyline was cheeesy. There were a few badass scenes with Daryl Hannah and Rutger Hauer, but that wasn't enough to save it for me,
  • Little Children (dir. Todd Field): As expected, I enjoyed this one. Patrick Wilson, Kate Winslet and Jackie Earle Haley are all great, though Wilson was probably the most one-note of the trio. A few nitpicks: I wasn't a huge fan of the quasi-literary narration, and the last fifteen minutes or so were a bit too pat for me. It does makes me curious to read the novel though, to see if we get to see more inside the character's heads during those last pivotal scenes.

04 avr 2007

quel foutu bordel!

Things That Are Hot
Jonathan Rhys Meyers in "The Tudors," to wit:


Mims (Just kidding! But this is hilarious, which leads me to...)

Things That Are Funny

Hot Fuzz, to wit:
Danny Butterman: Where's Lurch?
Nicholas Angel: In the freezer.
Danny Butterman: Did you say anything like 'cool it'?
Nicholas Angel: Umm no, not really.
Danny Butterman: Awww, shame.
Nicholas Angel: Well you would have been proud of me before, when he attacked me in the hotel and I distracted him with the cuddly monkey, I said, "Playtime's over." and hit him over the head with the peace lily.
Danny Butterman : Man, you're off the fuckin' chain!

Blades of Glory, to wit:

(see also: Hot, Things That Are, for Mr. Amy Poehler there. This picture doesn't do him justice, but watch an episode or five of "Arrested Development" and you will understand why he is my new (hilarious) imaginary boyfriend.)

Things That Are Lame

Yours Truly. l'm not going to whine about it, for once. I'm just confused by the recent drama-rama of my life. And dissapointed by the fact that while drama can be fun, it doesn't do much to alleviate fundamental loneliness.

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