Thursday, April 28, 2005

garden politics

A couple weeks ago, my mom told me that it was really important that I vote in the next primary because some korean dude is running for mayor of my hometown, sweet hometown, the glorious Edison. Great, I responded. What's his name? She shrugged her shoulders and replied, oh I dunno.

Thanks Mom. Now next time you ask me what my plans are for the "future" and forcefully recite a stunning array of options suggesting that maybe an entire solar system exists within one suburbian home and we live on different planets (too late for med school? I hear accounting is hottt. Those corporate lawyers, I hear that's good...) I will likewise shrug my shoulders and reply "oh I dunno" and I expect full acceptance as such.

Now I think it's great that Jun Choi is running in the primary against what Fiona Apple might call, if she cared to in that angry musical way of hers, some sort of machine, minus the extraordinary. Moving on from that awkward, unresounding play on non-released album titles, though there kind of is no way that Choi can win against the million-year incumbent Dem, I still think it's nice that he's running with that 0.5% window of "stranger things have happened". But it's nice; I'm an idealist in that angry musical way.

So yesterday, I hear indirectly from both foxes and an angry man who happens to be asian about the cream of the garden state's crop, two shmucks on a local jersey talk station, who got onto the topic of this mayoral candidate, worthless words à la racism.

Some choice tidbits from the transcript: (longer transcript and comments found here.
[Caller]: You just said it all, the last couple of ... callers, I guess they don't know that they live in America and we're being overrun. I had just moved out of Edison because of what has happened in the past 10 years... Orientals are all along, the whole complete route 27. And Indians have taken over Edison in north and all over.
[Carton]: Damn Orientals and Indians.
[Caller]: I..i moved out..36 years I've lived in Edison
[Carton]: And what was the biggest problem you had with the Orientals and the Indians ?
[Caller]: I can't handle them! There's no American people anymore.
[Carton]: Eh..
[Caller]: There shoving us the hell out!
[Carton]: It's like you're a foreigner in your own country isn't it?

Well I would be a little frightened too if a bunch of carpeting took over my town. Vacuuming's a bitch. Ahurhurhur. But their rhetoric (not sure if that's right word.. way of framing?) is definitely not unfamiliar and highlights the basic and seemingly impossible problem that undermines any efforts of responding effectively to racist remarks/ways of thinking. It's where, whatever all the worthless shit they say, they are categorically wrong and where it is perhaps most difficult to address, because logically, well, there is no logic: the reasoning that an American is not so simply because s/he is yellow brown green red blue just doesn't follow. How do you make Americans see other Americans as such? You! Green Grape! Don't you see that this Red one is also a Grape?! Do you not recognize grapiness? How do you solve this stupidly simple and so, an impasse, of a question?
Everyone's a little bit racist.
Kate Monster:
Well, it's a touchy subject.
No, not all Monsters are related.
What are you trying say, huh?
That we all look the same to you?
Huh, huh, huh?

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

oh my stars

stars.jpg


Yesterday, there was a benefit at Northsix for Save Darfur, Doctors Without Borders, and Human Rights Watch, set up by The Fatales and the venue. I went to support a good cause and see Stars. Thankfully, I will make no such pun on stars in that gazing or shooting variety and instead offer you another information portal to world happenings such as Sudan.

Unfortunately, I did not catch The Fatales because I was under the impression of a cheeseburger. It was a messy romance, accompanied with beery glances and parsley-ed french fries, while my friends loved cheese (we ate here). Nor did I catch Jeffrey Lewis. Act III was no such denouement but Kevin Devine and some peoples on stage. They had an enjoyable enough sound, though he unfortunately had that conor oberts bleating quality of the voice. Then, while thanking the audience, he said something to the effect of "it's great to see that we can come together for good things/awareness/etc. while we are privileged, white, somethingsomething, something." I got kinda lost at "white" cuz I was too busy swivelling about to see if my friends and I (nonwhite) still existed and whether there was some strange reflection from a nonexistent strobe light making eeeeverybody's faces all pasty and pale. Despite the fact that this was Williamsburg, there was a smattering of other colors. I folded my arms grimly and forced him and his crew off the stage with the sheer power of my kimchee-american eyes.

Then came Stars, and they were great and fun. grun, with much dancing and jumping and posing – the grun rock-star kind, not the snooty kind. I continued work on my "sucky dark blurry photos from various concerts" photography series, as you can very well see. And I learned that the band had its beginnings in Williamsburg before moving to Montreal (ooh la la, pamplemousse, grenouille, croissant) and vocalist Torquil, yeah that's his name, mentioned how much nicer the neighborhood's gotten but it still has shit all over the ground. This is true. Torquil also reminded me of a cross between this guy I know, Eminem, and Carlton with smaller dance moves. Hee. And it's always nice and rare to see a female doing real! things! in! a! band!

Here's an interview with Amy Millan. Talks a lot about Canada. If that's not incentive to read it, I dunno what is.

Listen to tracks from latest album (Realplayer)
Your Ex-Lover is Dead
Set Yourself On Fire
Live set from KCRW





Tuesday, April 26, 2005

the point being...?

Blogs are funny. Not like ha-ha funny. More like, you eye them a bit carefully while pretending to go about your made-up tasks like dusting aunt biddy's favorite vase. Because who has an aunt named biddy? Is her vase some cloudy metaphor for life? Fragile and both glaringly ugly in that tragically beautiful way?

But really. It's easy to get picked up and whirled around on the webby world and lose, well, all sense of reality. It's like any sort of hobby or whatever you put under your likes/passions/obsessions. Because when a friend asks you with real curiosity in her voice, "So what IS a blog?" You realize, is this what it's come to? Is this what it feels like to be a stamp collector, an entomologist?

Any such thing you do is bound to get higher and higher on the "nerd" level, the more you spend time on it. No matter how "cool" the topic is or how interesting the nytimes deems it to be. Nothing wrong with that... I've just been finding it really strange, how subdivided this world is and self-enclosed those little bubbles of links are. Entries remain, as that english teacher gently told you to improve upon, 'on topic.' There are blogs about everything under the sun, ranging from the informative to the entertaining to the waste of space. Small yet huge slices of life: opera, food, books, peace corps, asian people ... the list goes on and on. Kinja, which is a service that aggregates all your favorite pit stops on the net as they are updated, even has editor picks, all separated into neat little categories. It's like you're supposed to be in a comparative lit class and find yourself amongst people talking about imaginary numbers or acetyl-coenzyme A. But don't scientists like to read? Don't indie rockers like math? Can't you enjoy eating AND knitting?

Sigh. It's that sometimes, it's just like eating the same food over and over again. But you stop eating it, and then you start craving Mom's strange fusion of korean and meatloaf. It's beloved trash. The armchair, that dress, that kid (kiiiiiddding) you can't throw away.

And the other kind of blogs, the "here's what I'm up to" or "I can't believe Gary asked Lou Anne out instead of me" or I'm irrevocably changing the English language are only interesting if you know the person, or if you are some sort of anthropologist or it's.... dun dun dun .... well-written.

Some blogs DO have that well-written, if not entertaining, quality. No matter what the subject matter is. Where are they all hanging out? Is there a new food court at the mall that I don't know about?

So that's why I ask you, what are your favorite reads? What are some strange ones you've come across?

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

knocking on my own door

Well, I hope y'all (inexplicably sometimes ya'll in some neck of the woods) were not under the impression that I either got a life or died. Because I almost did run away with Pedro, but that will be for another day, mis amigos.

T'is time for change.

Meanwhile, listen to a clip of a tegan and sara track that I am tattooing on my ears. I heard it on the latest episode of Grey's Anatomy. Goooooo Sandra Oh! Would I spontaneously combust if I had cable?

Thursday, April 14, 2005

mushroom mystery

Well, I had to do a little research on the question of the mushrooms, but I'm not sure if I can pass the gumshoe level to double agent superstar. I have to admit, I'm still a tad confused. It seems that all these mushrooms under discussion are all varieties/strains of, if I may lapse into Latin, agaricus bisporus. Don't call your momz that.

Button mushrooms are the usual white ones at the local A&P or Piggly Wiggly or Kroger. Cremini, or baby portobello (sometimes portabella) or Italian brown are the heartier-tasting version of the white. Portobellos, you can use for hats. They have longer grower cycles... maybe cuz they're... larger? Though let me tell you, they are no substition for steak, no matter what those vegetarians tell you.

Nose about at mushroominfo.com for more of the same.

Mushrooms were the secret ingredient on iron chef america a couple weeks ago. It's true though. They throw around those white and black truffles like who cares! Thousands of dollars of who cares!

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

pirates!!!

All bad remarks about pilates scratched. All good work undone by belgian fries. Mmmm. That said, I have to say, I was sore in all the right places today, so I will give it another try tomorrow (who is this fitness machine?!?!). For now I will pretend it's called pirates class. Not in the Japanese accent way you racist. Harrro!!!

I'm working on a new site design cuz frankly m'dear, I'm sick of this one. Also under the impression that a new look will prove to be the start of a new and fabulous life. Don't worry, I'm used to disappointment. I'm listening to a radio station that is playing all Billie Holiday right now. I find that strange but comforting.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

and world peas

risotto.jpg


There's nothin' like stirring arborio rice for an hour to work those triceps!! Interesting note from Wiki: Risotto is always toasted before broth/liquid is added. Well, now with that nugget of knowledge, I know what to do with my life!

Giada's Mushroom Risotto with Peas is pretty fantastic, in any case. I've used baby portobellos or cremini in the past (maybe they're the same thing actually?) and mushroom broth and still fabulous results. You can even fry the leftovers in golden patty-form! Mmmmmm... patties........

Pretend transition here. Last week, I tried yoga for the first time at my gym, which I rather enjoyed, though it was pretty difficult for a girl who can't really reach her own toes easily, she's that unbendy. This week, I decided to try pilates, but I have to say, boo to a goose on that. Too much torture! Put your legs in the air and your arms straight out. Now move your legs up and down and keep going and then do something like evil pushups and then stay in plank position for hours and eons and no thanks man.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

unanchored

Hullo. Long time no write. I don't know. Sometimes. Well. Wow, I've stumbled on a particularly evil patch of incoherence. Malignantly growing.

Continuing to feel at sea, and not in that jolly pirate way. More like, on some weak, multiple splinter-inducing raft in that ocean in the middle of nowheresia. Cuz I just feel so unsettled and useless right now. And lonely. And depressed. Despite everything, all the blessings, all my limbs, things that other unfortunate souls wish on dying stars that wink slowly at you. Haha. You clueless souls on earth.

I don't even know what I'm getting at. Still unstable. So what? Getting my act together. What does that even mean? Maybe I simply just have a lack of focus or discipline and specific passion, all while thinking somehow that there is some sort of stocked ability (somewhere?) and potential. The rock on top of the hill, but nowhere to roll.

Friday, April 01, 2005

put out the guest towels

My first, and probably only, guest-blogging stint at foxes, swimming in the self-doubt and ramblings you've come to tolerate.