February 21, 2003

Cable Television Picks

Although I had seen it before, I was still captivated upon second viewing of the DJ/turntablist documentary Scratch. If you haven't caught that yet you need to check it out.

Also interesting was the PBS Frontline special called "The War Behind Closed Doors", an intriguing look into the development of the Bush administration's preemptive strike doctrine. It served to strengthen my feeling that Paul Wolfowitz is the anti-christ.

In other news, the rave movie Groove is possible the biggest pile of shit I have ever come across. My favorite part is how the directors only seemed to scare up 20-25 people for the "wild out-of-control dance party" rave scenes.

Matthew Barney Scares The Shit Out Of Me

If you ride the 6 (and I know you do...you 6 lovers) you have probably seen the advertisements for Matthew Barney's show "The Cremaster Cycle" at the Guggenheim.

The show offers up a bunch of photographs, installations, drawings, etc. from Barney's Cremaster films.

What is the Cremaster you ask? Ooohhh...it's the "the muscle which controls testicular contractions in response to external stimuli." Nice.

Matthew Barney scares the shit out of me. That's probably a normal response too. I should probably be even more scared by the recently learned information that he got together with Bjork and produced a child...

dear god...

A while back a friend of mine tried to get me to see Barney's film Cremaster 3. After hearing that the film ran about three hours with little dialogue and dental torture scenes...I decided to skip it.

I wasn't ready for that. Which probably means I'm not ready for Gus Van Sant's Gerry, either. Oh well.

According to a New York Times review of Barney's new show at the Gugenheim,
The work is accessible if you're open to it. There are many points of entry. The sheer spectacle. The mixing of elements, clinical, pristine, scatological and pornographic. The alternation of brutality and delicacy. The comic self-mocking tone. The recurrent signs and devices, medieval and sexual, like flags, coats of arms, wedges and orifices. The off-key colors[.] The obsessive fixation on detail.

I think that it could be interesting in small doses. The same Times review declares the show to be "far and away the most anticipated show by anyone to have come onto the scene in a decade or more."

Did I mention that Barney is a former high school quarterback from Boise, Idaho? First Built to Spill...now this. Boise is happenin'.

February 20, 2003

Who's For Or Against War

I thought this was a worthwhile read in Slate today.

February 19, 2003


Hi, my name is Neal Rowland. I'm stupid.
"Because of Cubbie's support for our troops, we no longer serve french fries. We now serve freedom fries," says a sign in the restaurant's window.

Gloomy Gloomy Gloomy

The New York City economy is in shambles. I doubt a war in Iraq will help matters. From today's New York Times.
Vicki Herschman, 43[...]lives on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. She said she had been sending out hundreds of résumés a month. Laid off from her job as a magazine circulation assistant in July 2001, Ms. Herschman has not been able to find a job of any kind.

"I've applied to places like Starbucks, but they see me as overqualified or say I don't have a retail background," she said. The employment agency that helped her find her last job has gone out of business.

Her unemployment benefits ran out early last year, Ms. Herschman said, and she has found it increasingly hard to keep body and soul together. She continues to volunteer at a soup kitchen, but does it now to get free meals, and she says she considers it a good week when she can afford subway fare.

Recently, she overcame her embarrassment and applied for public assistance. She is still looking for a job, but she is considering leaving New York City.

"I find it, especially after 9/11, gloomy and negative and depressing," Ms. Herschman said. "Before, it was lights, camera, action."

Read all about it here.

February 18, 2003

The Troops

Long time no post. Had a busy week last week and then went skiing in Vermont for the weekend. Cold. Cold. Cold. Then drove home yesterday during the blizzard. Snowy. Snowy. Snowy.

I will post more about the wonderful ski adventure later. For now here is an interesting story about the son of Doris Kearns Goodwin who is in the Army.