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January 26, 2004

Great Aussie Radio

I'm losing a family member to Australia. I have very mixed emotions about it. On the one hand, if it all goes well, I'll end up with a beach-house and a surfing instructor in a few year's time. On the other, snow storms are aesthetically pleasing, and I've never once wanted to venture the 18 hours by plane to find myself in a land of venom.

Anyway, at least we'll be united in radio. At least we'll have that. Destroyer fans should take note: they've been playing cuts off that latest, still unreleased album ("It's gonna take an airplane" - the best-titled song of all time). And Michael Stipe seems to get a lot of airtime too, which is all right, as I've decided he's ok.

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Just one of those days


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January 23, 2004

Me & School & Carney

I'm so stuck on the Carney. For a month or two I was seriously considering his master's program, but there's so much bs in that application process I don't even know where to start. Why do you need university papers - 5 of them, I believe - that still have the prof's hand-writing on them? I graduated 5 years ago, assholes, and I can't get it out of my head that anyone who still has their mint condition term papers on file somewhere 5 years after graduation is more than likely damaged goods. Likewise, they wanted glowing letters of recommendation (at least 3) from my film profs, when I mean c'mon people - they're film profs! For god's sake what do they know? I recall my second year teacher explaining: "You should be able to take the most important scene in your movie and remove it entirely from the cut and still have a great film on your hands." Positively Keatsian thinking there, bud. The fact he wouldn't write me a letter of recommendation if I paid him is a testament to my overall goodness as a human being. I could carry on at length, as the application really made me realize how much distain I had for my first university. When I got to that crap establishment, for instance, our class told our teachers we wanted and needed digital cameras and an online editing system, as this was the 90s, didn't they know? The profs agreed, and two years after we graduated, the equipment arrived, presumably paid for by our 4 year's worth of tuition. The only profs I loved enough to actually bother for Letters of Recommendation at this point have either been fired, become positive and quit, or died of alcoholism. I could try explaining that to Carney - and something tells me it would be fun - but on top of that, there are the GREs or whatever the fuck they're called to contend with, for which I'd have to study for months, if not years. And I can only take so much Susan and John entered the house at 4 and left at 11, Dan and Janine were upstairs when they arrived but came downstairs when Jim left, Allan and Doris disliked Jim and avoided his company completely during dinner, while Alex, who sat to Susan's right, left three hours before Janine and one hour after Dan. So, whatever, something tells me I'm staying out of Boston, living in cold-creek Canada, reading Carney on-line, continuing on with my expensive glue sniffing habit all by my lonesome.

I'm saddened that many of the films Carney writes about are all but impossible to find, apparently, without traveling to Boston, but I'm convinced in time, I'll find myself in a position to know more about the cinema he treasures. No matter how alien and invidious his writing might seem to those who dislike him, for my money, he hypostatizes the tendentious and limited nature of the modern film theorist's quest for comprehension quite prodigiously, to the point where a thesaurus is appropriate for conveying even a smidgen of praise.

But check out his review of Allegories of Cinema: American Film in the Sixties, for instance, or his review of The Johns Hopkins Guide to Lieterary Theory and Criticism and just try telling me he isn't the cat's ass.

Or, you know, don't bother.

Either way, really.

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January 22, 2004

Hidden Cameras on Winchester`

Everyone in the Toronto area must check out this show at once. I had never seen anything like it before, & frankly, was surprised. Choreographed dance and live rock'n'roll are the perfect compliment. At some point, the musicians handed their instruments off to the dancers, who magically managed to keep the song going. The band then took to the stage strutting their own uniquely unschooled looking dance moves and I realized it was among the most inexplicably moving things I've seen at a concert.

Being asked, and even pressured, to join everyone on stage in dance for the finale, on the other hand, made me feel, as a paying member of the audience, a little pissed, but whatever. Hidden Cameras deserve all the success that's a comin' their way. A truly inspired event - and it comes to an end on Sunday - so get down there.

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January 21, 2004

John Stone Fitness

On a related note, I'd like to take a moment to give props to John Stone. Everyone should go here, scroll down, and watch the little animation that's been constructed out of the last year in his life. He's no Caveh Zahedi or anything, but I'd say he did good with '03.

(tv forwarded this link to me, so it's probably via metafilter, but I actually don't know where he's getting his shit these days. tv, do you have anything you'd like to say to the class?)

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In The Bathtub Of The World

In which the astonishingly open Caveh Zahedi films a minute of his life every day for a year.

Things center mostly on his charming girlfriend, Mandy, who is haunted both by her mother's suicide, and her boyfriend who won't stop filming her about it.

He also finds time for his film-students, who either loathe him, or stand in awe of his ability to practice radical honesty. Nothing much happens when it gets right down to it. Zahedi sends a letter to Will Oldham, goes to poetry readings, visits the parents, confides (at length) in the viewer about his addiction to prostitutes, masturbation, and pizza, and generally does what he can to capture the small moments that make up his mundane, every-day life. He attends the premiere of his painfully self-absorbed documentary "I was Possessed by God!" (which is also available on the DVD) featuring him, tanked on mushrooms, employing a tone that would unsettle Laurie Anderson herself. (For what it's worth, he defends it quite well at the screening, which may have been the reason he made it.)

Toward the year's end, two things happen: he gets cast in Linklater's "Waking Life", and surprises Mandy on her birthday by employing a cameraman to film her from dawn til dusk. This last deal makes for a surprisingly beautiful meditation on what it means to create a document, and have a birthday (it's also included elsewheres on the DVD, and is well worth checking out). The brief scenes with him and Linklater are interesting, primarily to see such divergent sensibilities breathing the same air.

Caveh Zahedi is a trail-blazing weirdo worth checking out. I intend to lend this DVD - the first I've ever purchased! - to any and all of my friends.

And they will all love it, or shall pretend to for my sake.

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January 14, 2004

Fuck, man...

I had something really good to say this morning, but forgot what it was. Maybe it'll come to me later. Does saying this - in and of itself - constitute a "post"? I don't know. It sounds kind of funny on its own, and I wish it did - but I don't think so. I have a feeling there has to be more. It's sort of like the photo-blog equivalent of "Here's a picture of, ah, forget it, I can't think of anything I want to show you a picture of right now".

Yes, that was an analogy between blog, and photo-blog. I used it to make clear nothing is being said. Not so good. But I plan to start writing again. Like, talking about shit I think-writing, instead of making up a sentence that sounds funny about something I know less than nothing about, like, say, Canadian politics-writing.

Like, next week might be good. Or wait...

April! April has alwys been good to me.

In general, I've decided to work harder at sounding more effortlessly casual. That's my New Year's resolution. I'm going to spend up to 5 hours a day if I have to creating the illusion that what I'm saying means nothing to me as it ejects itself forth from my devolving brain into this beloved blogosphere. Ok... It's ok right? I just wanted to try using that word. I hadn't yet, and was curious if I could. So I tried it, ok? Are you really going to hold it against me? Cooper Anderson (or Anderson Cooper?) can eat a plate of horse shit. Picture it. Really concentrate and picture it... Tears in his eyes, gagging.

That's my gift to you!

Happy New Year!

Of course, I shouldn't be telling you my strategy for '04. Get the fuck out of my creative process, you-- before you learn too muc h and feel inclined to Paul O'Neill me on down the road, and I have to go through the lengthy process of calling your shit bunk and outing your gay kid.

But I couldn't.

I respect the right of your child to remain in the closet. Just as I respect the right of the other children to mercilessly tease and destroy & leave weeping by the roadside your shy child, who in this circumstance, has not yet been born. But he will be soon, sooner than you prolly think. Right around the time I run for Mayor of Medicinehat he'll be turning 13, for instance, which would mean you'd have to be getting knocked up- ah whatever, joke's dead.

Oh no, I've said too much! I haven't said enough! Is it me, or was listening to REM never cool? I can't believe how long it's taken me to arrive at this. (I'm working on a theory about how being 14 in 1988 - specifically - estranged me from "taste".)

Ah, Nelly.


It's taken me a whopping 15 hours to progress this far. I know, I know - You can't tell, cause it seems so casual. But trust me, it's very difficult. Veeeerrrrry difficult.

I'd have fainted were it not for the IV.

16 hours now! Damn this is draining. I have to go get soemthing tw'eat. (Notice my advertent typo merging with my spiffy slang? Eh? Eh?)


Ba and are Jerry and George:

Ba: He seemed like the perfect guy to work with, except he had the most severe form of halitosis.

*crowd laughs*

: What's the deal with that? Do people who have severe halitosis not somehow end up knowing they have halitosis?

*crowd laughs*

Ba: I don't know. *chuckle* Is that something people really know?
: Do... Do I have severe halitosis?

*crowd titters*

Ba: No. No, I've never smelled anything untoward--
: Oh good!

*crowd laughs*

Ba: What about me?
: Not at all my friend.
Ba: Alright!

(the two exchnage high-fives)

*crowd roars with delight, recognizing age old theme of halitosis is no theme - loving it anyway.*

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January 09, 2004

Secret photo


"I'd like to see this photograph posted in every public building in the US so Americans can be reminded to thank the American soldiers who put their lives on the line every day to keep this nation safe and free," said John Weisman over at Military.com.


(also via blogdex).

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Save America...

from its own bile.

(via blogdex)

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January 08, 2004

David Gordon Green

This one's so good the preview alone did me in, tho I watched it only after the film.

Similar in feel to this, but maybe even better. It's sloppy at the start, (like his crappy first movie), but by the end it's Splendor in the Grass with a happy ending - which is the highest praise I can think of off-hand.

David Gordon Green's making The Confederacy of Dunces next. The good news: Will Farrell as Ignatius J. Reilly. Bad news: Drew Barrymore. I managed to enjoy Darko (quite a bit) inspite of her, but that's no reason to think watching her mangle John Kennedy Toole will be any fun.

Nevertheless, should Larry David take part, it'll be tough to miss.

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January 07, 2004

Muslim Barbie


Meet Razanne.

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