Barbershop Voyeurism: For Want of a Shave

A luxury I have pined for but have never partaken in is the old-timey barbershop straight razor shave. They always appear so soothing, but I could never justify the expense ($25 for the simple shave at the local shop.) Continue reading

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Where in the World is Josh King?: The Road Trip Begins

This is my friend Josh King. Recently, Josh took an extended vacation to the Grand Canyon, a little getaway before his baby girl was born.

Josh likes Goldfish crackers. Really, who doesn’t? They are apparently a great snack on the Grand Canyon hiking trails.

That looks like fun. But did you know Josh likes to travel and eat Goldfish crackers all…over…the WORLD? Continue reading

Of Sublime and Summers Past

“All these things I do, They’re waiting for you.” -Bradley Nowell, Sublime, Garden Grove

Sublime reformed in 2009.

I learned this news recently. It disturbs me.

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In Praise Of: Urban Credentials

There’s an interesting on-going discussion following Sunday’s ‘Treme’ episode about the perennial debate of tourism/nativism of American cities.

What constitutes regional credentials? In Dennis Lehane’s “Gone, Baby, Gone”, Boston private dic Patrick Kenzie asks a purposely flippant question to Boston Police Detective Remy Bressant.  “What kind of name is Bressent?” he throws at him, questioning the cop’s Beantown credentials. “The kind they give you in Louisiana,” he replies.

“Oh yeah,” says Kenzie, ” Thought you were from here.”

“Well,” says Bressent. “It all depends on how you look at it. I mean, you might think that you’re more from here than me, for example. But I’ve been living here longer than you been alive. So who’s right?”

Treme’s “Right Place, Wrong Time” asks the same question, one that I had to answer over at Alan Sepinwall’s blog. First, read his review. My thoughts below: Continue reading

What I Read: Of David Simon

With HBO’s “Treme” series kicking into its third episode tonight, wanted to hit a few highlights in the vast archive of stories analyzing David Simon, the show’s co-creator and auteur behind arguable the greatest TV show of all time, “The Wire.” Simon, who also penned the book that served as the basis for “Homicide: Life on the Streets,” from all first-person accounts, Simon leaves an initial impression about as complex as his stories. He’s passionate to a fault, observant of the tiniest details but somewhat blind to the counterpoints of those he disagrees with, shy and bombastic depending on the situation, a rage of a human being who can articulate the complexities of our species with pinpoint accuracy. He’s Don Quixote with a pen, blasting away at the windmills of 21st century hipocracy. And like the Man of La Mancha, his anti-authoritarian stance attracts a band of misfit followers. The windmills, though, tend to remain unmoved by his onslaughts. Continue reading

New Orleans in a Moment – Three Odes

“[New Orleans] is capable of moments unlike any moments you’ll ever experience in life…Lots of American places used to make things. Detroit used to make cars. Baltimore used to make steel and ships. New Orleans still makes something. It makes moments. I don’t mean to sound flippant, and I don’t mean it to sound more or less than what it is, but they’re artists with a moment, they can take a moment and make it into something so transcendent that you’re note quite sure that is happened or that you were parts of it.” – David Simon

It is Halloween Night, and I’m standing on Frenchman Street, located on the border between the French Quarter and the Fabourg Marigny. my fingernails are painted black, my hair gelled in spikes. My friend Nic is wearing a studded leather dog collar, his girlfriend Abby towering behind him in a pair of thigh-high latex boots with six-inch platforms. The block is packed with Frenchman hipsters, dressed like pirates, gangsters, Ghostbusters, Teenage Music Ninja Turtles, a requisite drag queen or two. On an empty gravel parking pad to our right, a gaggle of young women, don fairy wings and dance in formation like a Greek Chorus. Up the block, where Frenchman meets Decatur Street at the mouth of the Quarter, the Second Line horns ricochet off the slumped over bars and brick rehabbed warehouses, a parade of lubricated costumers trailing behind, arms flailing to the bleeps. Neon signs and flambeaux torches flicker, casting shadows over the the bulging throng. One reveler stand in the middle, by himself, masked as a Dia de Muetros skeleton. His face and torso are hidden under a paper mache skull… Continue reading

Everything is Shiny, Always Gold…

I’ve been studying the two videos for Kid Cudi’s “Pursuit of Happiness” (accompanied by MGMT & Ratatat) like the Zapruder film. The song itself is haunting, but the videos are a master class in the weight imagery and music work together. One song can be a party-down number one moment, and a confrontation with a personal demons the next.

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