April 05, 2003

Can We Get A Cat Without HIV That's Not Blind, Please?/Miss Rheingold Goes Catholic

Is that piss or beer?The Field Mouse and I went to Williamsburg today to go check out some kittens at the Brooklyn Animal Resource Coalition. We haven't been to Williamsburg in a while...and that's good...because it SUCKS.

It's like visiting the hipster cage at the zoo. Everybody is seemingly under the age of 23 and so hip it hurts. Gross. Walking down Bedford reminded both of us of State Street in the college town of Madison, Wisconsin. When you're getting compared to a Midwestern college town, you know it's gone too far.

Anyway, the cats at BARC seemed like they had been abandoned or taken off the street. Which is essentially true. The nicest cat we saw (and to be fair, a lot of them were in cages...but I think that those had diseases or serious bad attitudes. One kept baring its fangs at me and trying to get at me out of its cage) only had one eye. They didn't have many kittens, which is what we were looking for. So we are going to wait a bit for some bitches to get in heat and get knocked up by some young hot stud of a male cat.

We learned today that New York is a rough town for cats. You can get your eyes poked out or get an STD. It's rough out there. I think that we need a nice suburban cat. A cat that will not run away to the lure of the streets and join a cat gang. A nice cat that wants to go to cat college and take care of us when we're old.

In this post are some promised pictures of the new Miss Rheingold campaign at E. Houston and Ave B. On the top right is Miss Rheingold, a gal named Kate Duyn, taking a bath in beer...either that or this is really a German porn campaign involving lots and lots of urine. This is only one of the billboard pictures. The other one is of Ms. Duyn in a punk rock beauty queen pose invoking a similar low-budget porn feel of Fiona Apple's influential morning-after heroin chic "Criminal" video.

Holy Father

Here to the left you can see a picture of the mural by Chico of the Pope as a symbol of peace. As I mentioned earlier, this mural used to involve George Bush and Saddam Hussein. Also interestingly enough is that the King's Pharmacy painted in the mural is now a Duane Reade. Gross. The Starbucks is not too far behind.

block of power

Finally you can see how it all works together in unexpected harmony. Naked white chick with big tattoo taking a bath in a Jewish-sounding beer. Punk rock beauty queen pose. Mural by Puerto Rican painter of infalliable Catholic leader praying for peace in the Middle East.

This is New York.

April 04, 2003

Yummy In My Tummy

Wow...this is...soooo...appetizing.


At times, Sen. John Kerry's waffling on liberal issues has annoyed me, but he's got the right ground here. Republicans, namely, Dennis Hastert, Tom DeLay and Bill Frist, got all up in arms after Kerry called for a "regime change" in the United States. Each basically decried Kerry's criticism of the President in a time of war while using the "think of the troops!" line. Here is the response from Kerry, a decorated Vietnam War veteran:
I don't need any lessons in patriotism or in caring for America.

And here's the kicker as the Globe noted...neither Hastert, Frist nor DeLay has ever served in the military...nice.

In response to the Republican criticism, the Kerry campaign compared the war credentials of his Republican critics with those of the senator, a Navy veteran who received three Purple Hearts, a Bronze Star, and a Silver Star for combat in the Vietnam War. DeLay did not serve in that war because of student deferments, and Hastert is not a veteran[...]

''Clearly, Senator Kerry intended no disrespect or lack of support for our commander in chief during wartime, but the point of this campaign is, obviously, to change the administration of this government,'' campaign spokeswoman Kelley Benander said in a statement. ''And unlike many of his Republican critics, Senator Kerry has worn the uniform, served his country, seen combat, so he'd just as soon skip their lectures about supporting our troops.''

Maybe the Democrats will grow some nads.

Naked Girls, The Pope and Beer

In my final weeks on the LES, things are obviously changing.

On the corner of Ave B and E. Houston there is a building that for the last year and a half or so has been adorned with tremendously large lengthwise outdoor advertisements. Over this time there have been ads for various products including Bacardi, Doublemint gum (big gigantic posters of the Serena and Venus Williams) and now Rheingold beer. Originally it was a photo of some rock and roll guy rocking out. Now...well now...hmmm.

The first and fifth photos on my banner are from murals by local artist Chico. The first one no longer exists as it was recently painted over with a mural of the Pope and messages of peace. (Actually for a couple of days the mural also had George Bush and Saddam Hussein but I think Chico changed it because the only person smiling in the mural was Hussein. A big shit-eating creepy grin. It was kind of fucked up.)

Rheingold has now placed above the Pope, two large ads involving Miss Rheingold 2003. The pictures can be found here and here. (You probably have to put in your birthdate to get through to the link). I am going to post pictures of it later when I'm not at work. I think this is kind of ridiculous. It's just another example of how the LES is turning into SoHo East. Gross.

That and the local kick-ass King's Pharmacy has just been taken over by Duane Reade.

It's probably a good time to leave. The people who have been checking out our apartment here have been complete fashionista/hipster fuckwits. It's depressing. Although one broker actually said to a prospective renter..."And you're only one block away from the East Village!!" Dumbass...the LES is definitely "hipper" than the East Village. You want to sell the LES not the EV. You should make the prospective renter think that they're on the cusp of something huge and that they're living in an edgy slighly sketchy neighborhood that has a few or so wine bars and a Jean-Georges partnered restaurant opening. Oh...excuse me...reality took over the end of that sentence.

The Eight Songs I Listened To After Seeing The Naked Rheingold Ad

"The Blizzard of '96"--The Walkmen from Everyone Who Pretended To Like Me Is Gone
"Is It This Easy?"--Awek from Awek
"Nevermore"--The Soundtrack Of Our Lives from Behind The Music
"Telephone Wires"--Mirah from You Think It's Like This But Really It's Like This
"Conduit For Sale!"--Pavement from Slanted & Enchanted
"Never Ending Math Equation"--Modest Mouse from Building Nothing Out Of Something
"Quincy Punk Episode"--Spoon from Series Of Sneaks
"Pop In G"--Heatmiser from Mic City Sons

April 03, 2003

Madonna Drops Bombs

Madonna's self-censored video for her song "American Life" is now available for online streaming and download on Salon. The quality isn't great...but you get the point. It certainly would have stirred a lot of discussion if it had been released. If there was anyone that could have survived the backlash and stood her ground, it's Madonna.

A note...Salon now demands that you go through a barrage of advertisements to get access to just about anything besides the wire stories. So...you've been warned.

Maybe We Shouldn't Get A Cat

Why should we have a slave? I'm against slavery. Therefore, I am entirely behind Dog Island, a place where emancipated dogs are allowed to run free without the interference of their slaveowner humans.

Power to the pooches.

The Five Songs That Pass The Time

"Days Of Being Wild"--...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead from Source Tags & Codes
"Oh Comely"--Neutral Milk Hotel from In The Aeroplane Over The Sea
"The New"--Interpol from Turn On The Bright Lights
"Water And A Seat"--Stephen Malkmus from Pig Lib
"Please Do Not Go"--Violent Femmes from Violent Femmes

April 02, 2003

Somebody Beat The Shit Out Of The Wiz

bounty of Chapter 11 saleThe Wiz has gone Chapter 11. I took advantage of The Wiz on 5th Avenue today by fleecing them of a new Supergrass album Life On Other Planets and then (probably to the delight...or not...of the fickle BMX crew at Giraffe Brothers...it was between this guy and Dave Mirra's game.) I purchased Mat Hoffman's Pro BMX 2 for 40 percent off each.

I came real close to getting Ol' Dirty Bastard's Greatest Hits.
Hey Dirty, I've got ya money, don't ya worry!!!

For the most part, the pickings were slim. The best albums available were probably some Cat Power ones...but I already owned them. Otherwise there was a wide selection of O-Town and Bon Jovi.

Hmmm...I Don't Know About This

Somebody thought that this thing-a--ma-bob was a good idea. I can kind of understand the intent...but the followthrough is a bit fucked up. This certainly isn't for Catholics.


So as previously mentioned, when we move to Prospect Heights we envision getting a cat. A kitten I guess. We'd like to mold and shape it in our image. Anyway, we looked online where we could get a cat and found the website for the Brooklyn Animal Resource Coalition which is a not-for-profit, no-kill, privately funded animal shelter, located in Williamsburg.

They have two pages online which list cats currently up for adoption.. Some of the descriptions made us laugh at loud. For example:
Andy is a caution. We call him "BAD ANDY" when he's not listening. He needs someone to post his bail!

Lady Belle is a big, quiet cat. She doesn't like everybody and is not at all happy in the shelter environment.

Heathertoes is a big cat with an "edgy" personality. A fun challenge for the person who adopts her!

Basil is an impish but shy one-eyed cat who needs a home with someone who can take their time to get to know her.

Shadow is a trouble-maker! A true cat-lover's cat, he'll make you laugh and run to put away the good china.

That's not all though...they've got some wacky dogs too.

Lexis is blind and will need special care, but her trust and sweetness are worth it all.

Rosie is a smart, active dog who is not good with children.

[Chewpie is] a big fella...who would be good with a domineering man experienced with dogs. Not compatible with most other dogs, cats and children.

Molly is a sweet girl who needs an experienced owner who is willing to work with her on her habit of grabbing onto your clothing when she is trying to play. Gets along with most other dogs. Probably best in a home with no small children.


April 01, 2003

Lift Me To The Top

the snow and the people who ski itThis photo is from a ski trip Field Mouse, her sister and I took a while back in Vermont at Mount Snow. It was a rewarding experience. The second time I had gone skiing this year. The first time was at Sugarbush and I was absolutely terrible. I actually fell off the ski lift after I stayed on it too long and couldn't get off. It was embarrassing.

It's raining today, and it's fitting since I've had a miserable day. At times like this I have to practice a bit of visualization and put myself on a ski lift flying over white snow. It has a calming influence.

In a month or so, my life will probably be remarkably different. I hope so. I don't think I can continue on my current path for much longer. I need to do some serious remodeling.

As mentioned and threatened before...it appears that Field Mouse and I are moving to Brooklyn. We wanted to move to Park Slope. As it will end up, I believe that we are going to move to Prospect Heights. What's the difference? A few blocks and a difference of wealth and race I suppose. Park Slope is ethnically diverse but probably more white than anything else. It's like Boston. It's very comfortable. We had originally thought that we were going to live in the area of President Street between 5th and 6th Ave. Alas, it was not meant to be.

Prospect Heights is just north of Prospect Park and Grand Army Plaza. It's a pretty small neighborhood. Now it seems as though we are going to move to Sterling Place between Washington and Underhill. This is different than we first thought. I had never even heard of Underhill before. Actually, I know somebody from Underhill, VT. But not Underhill in Brooklyn.

I don't know much about Prospect Heights except that it is a largely middle-class black (Caribbean) neighborhood that has seen a lot of real estate interest since Park Slope rents and prices began to rise. So we go to being the minority on the LES to being the minority in Prospect Heights. Different majority though.

We expect to sign our new lease on Thursday. Last time our lease fell through on the day of signing, so I think we're cautious about it. There doesn't appear to be any risk of anything though. Anyway, our new place is a garden apartment. We have shared access to the back with the owner of the building. We have a regular kitchen. No more little small tiny kitchens with little counterspace and much clutter. Nope. We now have a dishwasher. I feel like a new man. We also have two, not one, but two working fireplaces. We have a mud room. We have storage for bicycles. Shit, I have to get a bicycle. We have another small room that has many possible uses. I'm going to try to make some sort of small Japanese garden in the back...or at least a potted plant.

We're going to get a cat. We were going to name it Noboru Wataya after the Okadas' cat in the book The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle. Field Mouse liked that idea until she realized the real Noboru Wataya the person is evil. So now we're going to name it Mackerel which is the new name Noboru Wataya the cat gets when he comes back to the Okada house.

Or Mack...I suppose.

We are really really pissed, however, because it appears as though we are going to be moving into an area serviced by Cablevision as opposed to Time Warner. Cablevision sucks. Our area will not be wired for digital cable. This means that the hundred or so bucks I threw down for the NHL Center Ice hockey package is wasted. I will miss my beloved Boston Bruins getting swept in the first round by the Devils. Field Mouse will miss the first ever playoff appearance for the Minnesota Wild. The future is not brighter. Even if we could get digital cable, their channel selections suck. We will not have HGTV. I live for HGTV. I mean...no more House Hunters? I shudder to think.

The area is also not wired for cable modems. Are we moving to the Sudan? I might have to check out the much maligned DSL. Yuck.

Our rent will decrease by $700/month. Our apartment size will probably double. Bye-bye Manhattan. Bye-bye LES. You are the only NYC we have ever known.

March 31, 2003

A Good Idea

I've been saying this all along. The idea that you can't love your country and disagree with a war and an administration is laughable. The United States is not a president, it is a people. So it's a good idea that anti-war activists are taking back sole ownership of the flag from those in support of the war.