Jane Says, “Sex and Violence!”

Jane’s Addiction is back on tour, playing their critically acclaimed Nothing’s Shocking from start to finish. janes3As Perry Farrell asked the crowd last night at the Brooklyn Bowl, “Is it shocking that Nothing’s Shocking is having its 25th anniversary?” MI0002215536Meant to be rhetorical, it wasn’t. Because it is, shocking that is. Dave Navarro remains as tattooed and rocking’ out as ever while Farrell maintains his crackhead je ne sais crois. Janes-Addiction-OmahaBut even with the bra-and-pantied girls swinging above the stage, the music isn’t as raw, nor as overwhelming, but has deteriorated into more of a burlesque. janes2All of which was made worse by the Williamsburghians, in their hats and beards, chanting “Let’s Go Rangers” at the bar.Brooklyn Hipsters

Chris Hadfield’s “An Astronaut’s Guide to Life On Earth”

Chris Hadfield’s An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth is something to read.hadfield Self-reflective and detailed, Hadfield offers a glimpse into what it really means to be an astronaut. If the only thing you really enjoyed was whipping around Earth in a spaceship, you”d hate being an astronaut. You train for a few years, minimum, before you’re even assigned to a space mission. You practice tricky, repetitive tasks as well as highly challenging ones to the point of exhaustion, and you’re away from home more than half the time.(37)

Intellectually, I’d known I was venturing out into space yet still the sight of it shocked me, profoundly, In a spacesuit, you’re not aware of taste, smell, touch. the only sounds your hear are  your own breathing and, through the headset, disembodied voices. You’re in a self-contained bubble, cut off, then you look up from your task and the universe rudely slaps you in the face, It’s overpowering, visually, and no other senses warn you that you’re about to be attacked by the raw beauty. (89-90) Screenshot (961)Oh, and another thing about Colonel Hadfield: he certainly knows his hockey.hadfield

A Superior “Special Processed American Meat” Message

The punctuation is poor, the message ridiculous, but I do appreciate the details of Mr. Richard’s impressive fortune and tragic demise:

I am James West attorney to late Mr.Richard,who died in a car crash in London with his
family on November 5th 2001.He left behind a deposit of (9.8 million Pounds).poundsYour consent is needed by me to present you as the next of kin to the Bank to inherit his
fortune. Can I trust you on this? You can reach me on Email; and Re-confirm your full
names.

Writing Sex in ‘my bad side’

One of the greatest challenges in writing is getting the sex right, which was an especially difficult matter in my bad side, because it’s a key aspect of the novel.

“But now let us go to bed.” He pulled off my blouse and kissed down my back and stayed at my hips and held himself just away, me standing, legs spread, naked and had me play with his penis. I opened my mouth, my jaw down, pliant, and ran my nails across his stomach and neck, watching the pink trail up his cheek until he had my thumb and forefinger in his mouth, sucking like a baby, getting frantic. Screenshot (981)He pressed against me hard, knocking us onto the bed, desperate, burrowing into my breasts, his tongue sloppily out, like a honey bear, unable to slow his thrusting, faster, kissing and licking my ear and then quiet, trying to pull back, to look at me and then just grabbing as hard as he could. He had his hand on my face and neck, almost choking me, and then pushed all the way in. I grabbed the edge of the bed, pulling the sheet up in clumps. I kept him in that ecstasy, on the brink, tight, and he was trying to lift us all the way to the ceiling and then crazed, holding my leg up like a post.

He snorted coke and wanted me to pose again and held himself exact above me. “Who has been taking my bed from the place in which I left it? He must have found it a hard task, no matter how skilled a workman he was, unless some god came and helped him to shift it.” His penis bounced wildly, and went into me, doing knee bends, carrying us into the bathroom. My shoulder and head were pressed flat on the ceramic tiles, white against my face, a coiling of green vines and branches against my breasts. Screenshot (980)I was victorious over the Cicons. I vanquished the Cyclops, Telepylos and Circe. I have been to Hades. I have heard the Sirens.” He grabbed my waist, the cool of his ring against my bellybutton, and pinched my nipple, whimpered and was done. He filled the Jacuzzi with salts and massaged my back and shoulders and went down into my legs.“I have seen terrible Charybdis and Scylla. I was promised immortality by Calypso. I have come back to you.”

The Quagmire that is “A Confederacy of Dunces”

John Kennedy Toole’s A Confederacy of Dunces is a quagmire of a book. confederacyHailed by many as an “original work of comic genius”, it remains, for me, a narrative weighed down by an irritating and unrealized protagonist: “Ho hum,” Ignatius yawned, exhibiting the flabby of his pink tongue. “Levy Pants sounds as bad if not worse than the titles of the other organizations I have contacted.” (61)

The prose are enigmatic, offering moments of vivid description only then to inevitably succumb to being awkward and tediously formulaic.

“What’s going on here?” a woman asked from the padded cart reuse leatherette door of the bar. She was a statuesque woman nearing middle age, her fine body covered with a black leather overcoat that glistened with mist. (23)

On this, my second attempt to read the book, I made it only to page 121: In my innocence, I suspected that the obscene jazz issuing from the loudspeakers on the walls of the factory was at the root of the apathy which I was witnessing among the workers.

Trapped on a distant planet, I might try again.Screenshot (522)

Plumbing Artist: Cristian Daniel Torres

Cristian Daniel Torres is a plumber and an artist.20150418_163706His creations are enigmatic, evoking child-like wonder20150418_163655Some are mechanical, even functional. (Click the image below to see him demonstrate a computer desk.)Screenshot (984)All of the work can be seen at Mr. Torres’ studio at Local Project in Long Island City, Queens.

To Blog or Not To Blog: Is That Even a Question?

I have drifted from the blog, back to be my former non-blogger state; issues arose, conflicts, work and drink alike. Clifton Bar2I have felt guilty about leaving the blog on its lonesome, a confused guilt of sorts, because I don’t know why I should care about doing it. I don’t and then I do, thinking about things that I might post, some of them vaguely interesting, some not so much. girls shoooting it upAnd there are moments that I actually enjoy it, the process of making it work most of all, and apparently I’m supposed to be doing this so as I can raise my profile when, one day, my work might be in demand. Screenshot (977)But this virtual platform and the jabbering nonsense that it represents subjects me to doublethink, having to reflect on what is a worthwhile waste of time. IMAG3789It’s a meandering, endless thing, and so I’ve had it in the back of my mind that a thousand posts would be something, something irrelevant, but a goal nonetheless. 20150106_074058Which means I have only 376 to go.