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Day: January 13, 2010

“Dear Folk Monster” by my friend Michael

My friend Michael Arginsky made a video for a Monsters of Folk video contest. It’s a meditation on stillness and I think it’s quite good. I like the way his deliberate use of imperfect moments—rack focusing, the actor almost laughing, the dude’s eyeballs twitching because his hair is tickling his eyelashes—convey a sense of humanity. It’s as if to say, “Hey, none of us is perfect, but we’re all pretty special and similar at the same time. Also, people really just cannot stand perfectly still.”

Check it out and be sure to leave your fawning admiration for the video here so he can see it.

One thought. I think the recent development of the “Make our music video!” contest is kind of funny. On one hand, it allows up and comers to display their talent and get their work out there. On the other hand, it’s a way for a band to make a good music video for basically nothing. Kind of a rip off.

I hope Michael wins this. I haven’t seen any of the other videos yet, but I’ll tell you right now that they are all garbage.

Ok, that’s not entirely fair. There was one I liked also. This one. But there is a whole lot of crapola on there.

Thanks for sharing, Michael!

Gavin McInnes on “The Death of Decorum”

This morning I was doing my daily check of Street Carnage, when I read Gavin’s article about a trip to an American drugstore. At the bottom of his quick diatribe of the utterly pathetic state of the American drugstore, was a link to another rant he posted on a different site called, “The Death of Decorum.”

Here’s an excerpt.

When punk hit London in the late 1970s, it was impossible to buy bondage pants or hair dye or even a leather motorcycle jacket. Punk back then was about using whatever was available to be ridiculous, even if that meant walking down the street in your pajamas. It made their parents furious and that’s all that mattered.

As a parent who grew up punk, I had mixed emotions when I first saw a Puerto Rican high school student walk into a bodega with her pajamas on. It made me mad, but not because she was fighting the system. It made me mad because she was being so fucking lazy.

The whole thing is hilarious and totally true. I’m no pinnacle of fashion, but I won’t leave the house in my pajamas. I don’t even own jeans. Over the last few years, I’ve been retiring my t-shirts and shifting toward shirts with actual buttons. Crazy, I know. I’ve even thought about incorporating dressing better into next year’s theme. I know that, for me, if I don’t get up and get dressed, I can’t do anything, especially if it’s working at home. That process of putting on real clothes, i.e., not pajamas or sweats or a bathrobe, is a subconscious cue that it’s time to get to it, whatever it is. Conversely, the first thing I do when I get home from work is to take off my shoes and shirt, a sign that I’m done god damn working for the time being. But, if I am going to work again later that night, write or whatever, I put clothes back on. Weird. I know.

I’m not saying a man needs to wear a tie every day of his life, but going around in your jammies is ridiculous. I couldn’t even imagine going outside in pajamas. I feel foolish enough going outside in exercise clothes.

For example, here’s me on Thanksgiving.

Granted, it was a holiday, but I would have never been able to pull of Gentleman Butcher if I hadn’t worn a tie.

Here’s me recently surrounded by my womens.

And then there’s People of Walmart where we can see fine examples of how people dress when they leave the house.

How about this fellow?

Of this one?

Or this one?

Or this…well, you get the idea.

Now, here’s a bunch of guys at a baseball game in the past.

Look at all those collared shirts! Look at the ties! The coats! Now, let’s look at a modern crowd.

No class. Look how they’re reacting to the poor man with the baseball bat growing out of his chin. He just wants to enjoy a baseball game and they’re reacting with fear. For shame.

Next time I go to a baseball game, I’m going to wear a suit, just to reconnect with my older timey ancestors and to show the world that I think their eyeballs are worth about 10 extra minutes of my time. World, you are worth it. Joe, you’re worth it too. Get dressed, America.

Sixpoint Craft Ales, perhaps the greatest American beer

Dear America,

New York City has been holding out on you.

I’m not talking about musical theatre or the nightlife or whatever things people come to New York from all over the country to experience. No, I’m talking about what might be the single greatest beer in the entire history of the universe, Sixpoint’s Righteous Rye. Never before has a beer so tasty, so dangerous, exerted such pressure on me to drink it. It makes most other craft beers seem like the cans of Hamm’s sitting in your trunk while you’re at summer school when you’re 16.

Brooklyn Brewery? I love you, but no.

Dogfishhead? No!

Smuttynose? How I adore your IPA, but, still, no.

Europe? Your dogged adherence to tradition is commendable, but no.

Asia? Not in a million years.

Africa? South America? Australia? No! No!! No!!!

And while I would love to recommend that you fine folks around the country go to your local purveyor of fine beers and purchase a six pack of this mighty beast of a drink, you cannot. Sixpoint does not bottle beer. You can only get it on draught. It’s even difficult to find sometimes in Manhattan, but it waits for me like a patient friend when I come home to Brooklyn. Always there. Always happy to see me.

Sixpoint, you have brightened my life with the Righteous Rye and I thank you for it.

To the rest of America, when you’re in town on vacation, take a break from the tourist crap, take the subway across the East River, find yourself a nice little bar, and get a Sixpoint. You will thank me for it.

Check out their site: Sixpoint Craft Ales

“Slaughter of the Soul” by At The Gates, Live at Wacken 2008

Because tonight is clearly a night of superlatives, here is one of the best songs off one of the best metal records by one of the best metal bands of all time performed live.

Jesse and I went to see At The Gates here in New York at Irving Plaza in July of 2008 and it was amazing. Not just amazing, but Jesse’s first metal show. And what a show.

The Thing from The Thing’s perspective

Is John Carpenter’s The Thing the best horror film ever made? Well, don’t let me ruin the rest of your life for you, but the answer is, “Yes.”

Is it, then, any surprise that the best horror film ever has inspired the best piece of fan-fiction ever? One with perhaps the greatest ending line I’ve read in ages? No, no it is not.

If you’ve never seen The Thing, go. Do so. I’ll wait.

Ok. Wasn’t that good? I know. So awesome.

Now, read “The Things” by Peter Watts. It’s long, but worth it.

Go. I’ll wait.