Thursday, December 25, 2003

It's Christmas day and everybody's wounded. Well, not me, but everyone else. And actually, it's not even Christmas anymore here on the east coast.

I got the Michel Gondry DVD which I don't want now that I've borrowed Alex's copy, and the latest Flaming Lips EP and the new Shins record, which I'm listening to now. I'd heard it previously, on iTunes, on not very loud headphones. I like it better through speakers, but I'm still thinking I prefer the first record. I was also given a book by Thomas Hobbes which my mom figures I'll have to read at some point. She is probably right, but I'm not going to bring it back to Olympia this trip as my luggage is full and I'm not going to be reading it this quarter. She also apparently got me a boardgame, but didn't give it to me, which is cool, as I'm not sure I could mask that combination of "I don't want this," "I don't need this," and "Where am I going to fit this?" and "What about my personality suggests I would enjoy this?"

By the way I'm not that bummed about the loss of all my comics and shit I mentioned in my last post. I'm taking either a zen buddhist or a nihilist perspective to the whole thing- fuck it, they're just possessions. And they can be replaced.

Other music stuff- I might be able to get that Sufjan Stevens Michigan record for free as a dude at my church I'm friends with works for Sounds Familyre. And my dad doesn't know what to get me, so he'll probably buy me some CDs on Saturday. Also, my brother gave me a gift certificate for Spaceboy. Records I'm looking at purchasing soon include Bonnie "Prince" Billy- I See A Darkness, Silver Jews- American Water, Califone- Quicksand/Cradlesnakes, and Liars- We No Longer Knew What We Were EP. Oh, and I bought the Television Adventure reissue for 15 bucks at Best Buy, the cheapest I've seen it anywhere. I guess that even corporate chains price stuff cheaper in Philadelphia suburbs than they do in Olympia.

And tomorrow I'm going to be back in Chi, hanging out with Jason and Erin and hopefully some other people. I'm doing this early, as my dad's going to drop me off on his way to work. I'm going to sleep on Jason's couch. Regardless, I should probably go to bed now.

Sunday, December 21, 2003

For those who enjoy laughing at my misfortune: Flew back to New Jersey today. It turns out that all of my comics/graphic novels of a nontraditional size got FUCKED. Warped by water, consumed by mildew, then warped by drying. All of them. The short list: Jimmy Corrigan, Eightball, Likewise, Scott Morse stuff, and old Far Side collections from when I was but a wee young'n: ALL FUCKED.

My mom remains kind of lame with her caring, my stepdad remains a prick with his saying of stupid shit.

This is funny: My stepdad was given a DVD player for his birthday, along with some of the worst movies of the past five years. I know what you're thinking "Does he have Serving Sara?" Does he ever. Along with How To Lose A Guy In Ten Days!

Oh, and at the airport, my plane was oversold. So they offered a free round trip to anywhere in the continental United States and Canada to whoever would give up their seat to take the next plane to Philadelphia. I spent a shitload of time at the airport, but now I have a free round trip.

When I go back to Olympia, I'll get my laptop back, which means that you can expect the general quality of these posts to improve.

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

I haven't updated this in a while.

My quarter's over. Now I am essentially just counting down to going home.

I saw some movies, including Doctor Strangelove, Fargo, Ghost Dog, and Bad Santa. All of these movies were quite good. Also: I borrowed the Works Of Michel Gondry DVD. My mom has already purchased it as a Christmas gift. Now that I've borrowed it, I don't need to own it, but whatever. It's got some good videos.

Oh, so that Sleater-Kinney/Cat Power show? I didn't go. Surprise.

Time for a half-assed Wilco quote: Funny how you make new friends.

Been writing a short story ever since I got kicked out, in a notebook. Progress goes slow. It's pretty fucked up and I'm happy with it.

This has been pretty structureless, so I'm not going to be able to pull off the strong ending I usually strive for.

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Rosa Parks: What a bitch.

Sunday, November 30, 2003

Sofia Coppola did a White Stripes video, for I Just Don't Know What To Do With Myself. The weird thing about the video is how it encapsulates the major criticism I've heard about the White Stripes.

For those who haven't seen it, it's a woman in a black bathing suit/underwear, dancing on a pole. Kinda' classic rock video imagery type stuff. But it's shot in black and white. Hence lending an arty/lo-fi aesthetic to the proceedings, which otherwise would be laughed at for the classic-rockiness of it all.

I also saw the Michel Gondry-directed Hardest Button To Button video, and Jack White's mustache looks like a turd. The end.

Thursday, November 27, 2003

So Pitchfork decided to do a second list of the top 100 records of the 1990s, after they already did one in 1999. It didn't correct the one glaring mistake- not making Neutral Milk Hotel number one. It was in at 88 originally, which is pretty sad. On the new list it's at number 4, behind The Soft Bulletin, which isn't all that great either. I could talk for a while about the two lists and compare/contrast, but I'll just say that a second list is total bullshit. Like revisionist history, almost. The first list did have some fuckups, but you accept it. I'll talk more about this later. The computer I type this on is really slow to respond, it's fucking with my head. The computer center is closed for Thanksgiving, so the computer I'm typing on is one of three crap computers in the HCC.

My Thanksgiving plans fell through. Because of the crap computer, I'm going to make a long story short and say I overslept.

Got an e-mail from my dad. Weird thing about his e-mails is I can't hear his voice saying them. I can't imagine him saying stuff like "holler if you need anything. Miss you. Love, Dad."

I thought this would be much longer, but I hate typing on this keyboard and I need to take a crap. So happy thanksgiving everybody.

Saturday, November 22, 2003

There's a song that's been running through my mind. Don't want to type up the lyrics here, as that would be too fucking sad. Instead, here's my attempt at a Nick Hornby Songbook type essay.

When I first got to this college and started making the rounds of meeting people, there was an easy way to divine those who, like me, visit Pitchfork on a regular basis. I met two people. Their music collections were diverse but filled with stuff I respected. There were two CDs that both of them owned, and I owned as well. They were the only CDs by the bands that made them, and both were in CD wallets filled with Def Jux rap records. These two albums were Source Tags And Codes by And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead and Emergency & I by The Dismemberment Plan.

At Pitchfork there's an interview with The Plan, from before that record came out. They talk about the new songs that the interviewer had seen in a live setting, and Travis Morrison said that he was really excited about The City. It's one of the songs he enjoys playing. It's not my favorite song on the album. But it's the one that's been going through my thoughts in regards to those people I haven't seen in a while, who I left. I'm sure none of them thought the song in my direction, because I was the only Pitchfork whore amongst my high school circle- I think I might've lended Erin my copy of Emergency & I, but no one else had heard it, and surely no one listened to it again and again, practically memorizing every last lyric. Only I am at that pathetic.

But yeah, here I am in Olympia, and to steal the title from an album I've never heard and have no real interest in ever hearing, everyone who ever pretended to like me is gone. The short list of friends has gone home. The long list probably has too. Happy thanksgiving.

Last night, as I left the library, I saw the bus, accepting passengers. I considered going downtown, waiting at the Greyhound station and taking the next bus to Portland and hanging out there for a weekend. It was a pretty stupid idea, and I'm aware of it, but it's the stupidity of youth and I think everyone would forgive me. I didn't follow through with it then but I might still do it tomorrow.

No, I won't. None of the plans work out. Let's make some now- this is addressed to the short list of friends mentioned above, those who live in Olympia- On December 14th, at the Showbox in Seattle at 7 PM, is an all-ages show with Sleater-Kinney, Cat Power, and The Thermals. We should go.

We're not going to, but let's pretend we might. Deluding yourself is fun.

I guess I was deluding myself when I said I wasn't going to type out the lyrics to the song, but this post has gone awry. I'm not going to write them all, just a chosen verse:

So I'm not unsympathetic, I see why you left; There's nothing to do, there's no one to know, the city's been dead since you've been gone.

Friday, November 21, 2003

McSweeney's whore!

this is a quote from Jonathan Ames, from the Club Existential Dread series thing, thinking a thought I've thought:

After dinner, like every night, there was entertainment. Tonight there was a sweet competition between four couples to elect the best couple of Club Med, like King and Queen of the prom, continuing the theme of "this is high school." But everything is high school. Maybe everything is just fucking life and high school was a part of life.
I don’t know who’s going to read this. I hope that people have stopped making a habit of visiting here, updates are going to come rarely now. No new tales of roommate nightmares will be found here, but rest assured, they suck. Nothing has changed in regards to the last post. I’m typing this in the computer center because these thoughts just feel a need for release. Not because they’re important, because I hate them; I want to stop thinking them. My thoughts are bullshit thoughts.

My amorality is wearing thin. It didn’t use to feel so fake. I swear to God, I used to not care whatever you did. Drive home drunk, you’ll be OK. Ha ha ha, what a great joke. But: My new roommate is a drug dealer, my dad’s fucking up his life. Only he’s not. You know, the strip clubs and the alcoholism and the unsavory friends and the shit I don’t want to think about- it’s not really ruining his life. Nothing is ruining his life. I know this. My friends drink and drug and do dumb shit and everything is haha. But here’s the thought I want to stop thinking: That they’d be better off if they stopped.

Jesus fucking Christ, I hate myself. Remember yesterday, when I laughed at the kid in the “straight edge” shirt? Remember last week when I thought about trying ‘shrooms and seeing the Microphones? I liked myself then. These thoughts were there then too, this is not new.

But now, there’s this morality and it’s a bullshit morality. I hope no one reads this, because I think that everyone who reads this should hate me, for being so fucking stupid. I’m aware.

My mind’s divided, all this self-reflexive bullshit and I’ve got two thoughts which I think both sides can agree on:

I need to get fucked before I go puritan.

And I need to get shot before I go insane.

Thursday, November 13, 2003

So I come back to my dorm on a ten-minute break, hoping to eat a burrito. I didn't eat that burrito.

You see, one dead bedbug has been found in the bedbug inspection. But bugs could've been laid. So this is going to be the last entry for a month, probably. And there'll be no more chats over the internet with any of you. Because my computer, clothes, stereo, etc. need to be inspected and fumigated. I'll be living the zen life, with jackshit of my possessions. On the good side, my new room will have ovens and I can cook. Also, because I won't have access to my stereo for a while, I'm playing Daydream Nation by Sonic Youth. This'll be the last loud noise from my speakers for a while.
So as I shower, I hear a doorknock. I wrap up the showering and go outside. My mom had said she's sent a package of food, which would arrive Wednesday. Day late, but whatever.

It turns out I got a care package... without the care. There's a company called Philly Foods which sends a taste of Philadelphia by mail. Which when you think about all the amazing food, is a brilliant idea. But these foods come from amazing restaurants, which leaves us with-

What I think is a hoagie. I see lettuce emerging from the roll, and it has "no onions" written on the saran.

Tastykakes. These are pretty tasty, but not "send-by-mail" tasty. I can't say I've missed them, but anyone on campus who wants to discover the glory that is Butterscotch Krimpets should come over and say hello. It's a pretty meager glory, but I like them enough.

A can of black cherry wishniak soda. This is good shit. It's from Frank's, a company whose wares I've never sampled.

Goldenberg's Peanut Chews. Never thought of these as a regional thing. I think that if I ate them, they sucked ass.

A pretzel. They don't have Auntie Anne's out here, the poor bastards, but this is just a regular pretzel, seemingly unsalted, the kind of thing that firemen sell in suburban New Jersey for fundraising.

And the piece de resistance. A philly cheesesteak. In the most fucked-up and bastardized way. We've got a roll (probably Amoroso's) some vacuum-packed slices of meat and little American cheese singles. I can't express to you how unappetizing this is.

There's also two packs of mustard and a pack of olive oil, which is weird.

This is all packed into styrofoam, with a little freezer-pack thing and some bubble-wrap.

I know it goes without saying even when hearing the concept that you could get better food actually being in Philadelphia for a day. But I had no idea how true that was until my mom seemingly forgot it.

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

So here's something which I think serves as a nice counterpoint to yesterday's sort-of-sadfest:

2003 Year In Review

I was thinking about this, and how I'd write it up and post it at some point after Christmas and before January 2nd. But my roommate is snoring and I'm thinking back over this past year, and, you know what? This was a great fucking year. I'm not that excited about stuff that's happening right now, and I don't know if anything super bad-ass is going to roll out between now and the end of the year- I can't think of anything that exciting, as I probably won't end up seeing Endless Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind until next year. Let's start off with the year in movies.

Best movie to come out this year was Kill Bill, fuck you if you disagree. I saw smart movies too: Lost In Translation, American Splendor, Dirty Pretty Things, Man Without A Past, City Of God. And yeah, they weren't as good. Kill Bill was the only movie I saw and wanted to see again that came out this year. In terms of movies that came out in years previous, that I only saw this year, 2003 was an amazing year. I saw Magnolia this year. I saw Punch Drunk Love. The Princess And The Warrior. I saw The Godfather 1+2, Taxi Driver, Chinatown, Harold And Maude, The Graduate, Straw Dogs. Saw Blue Velvet and Slacker. And lots of other movies, my god. I didn't see any Quentin Tarantino movies until this year, actually. I saw them all. (excepting Four Rooms, but including True Romance) You know how to make your summer a good summer? Lots of movie rentals. I hadn't seen any P.T. Anderson movies until this year, and again, I saw them all. Magnolia was the best movie I saw this year. I also saw Pootie Tang this year, and that was a good time, a nice memory. That's more of a high points of this year in my life thing than a high points in cinema thing, though.

Comics: 100% wrapped up, that ruled. That comic made me happy. In terms of stuff contained withing the year, I guess Unstable Molecules was the best thing. I am a dork. League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen volume 2 wrapped up as well, after a crappy beginning. The final issue was kind of weak after the steadily increasing quality of the previous issues, but the twist ending was so smart, so subversive, that I really just like thinking about it's existence. Again, there was smarter stuff I read: David Boring, Jimmy Corrigan, and Goodbye, Chunky Rice. All of those were good, unlike the movies I named as being smart, which were largely mediocre. But you know what wins when I'm picking favorites? Things that made me happy. Jimmy Corrigan bummed my ass out, I was happy that there was a new episode of Home Movies on the night I read it (the lost third season finale, it was beautiful, like most episodes of Home Movies. That was the TV highlight, along with The Daily Show once I found myself with Comedy Central again). 100% was joyful. I kind of already included stuff that didn't come out this year when I mentioned the art stuff, but I also read The Eaters this year, I think. That kicked a lot of ass too. Black comedy about a family of cannibals. There were other good comics, I finished reading The Invisibles, that was OK more than amazing, but still served as a capper to my high school years so it deserves a place in this here roundup.

I read real books as well. Pale Fire, Catch-22, The Stranger, Sometimes A Great Notion, Dubliners, Death Of A Salesman. All of this was when I was reading stuff instead of doing homework for high school. I read Lord Of The Flies for school, that was good too, but proof that the stuff for high school was none too mentally challenging. (Some of these books were pretty easy reading, you can guess which ones, but Pale Fire was a bitch) I also read some Vonnegut this year, and Dave Eggers' A Heartbreaking Work Of Staggering Genius. Today I finished Part One of Lolita, I'll probably finish that by year's end. Didn't read anything that came out this year, so this little highlight reel is nothing more than me being self-congratulatory.

Music: Manitoba's Up In Flames is the record of the year, with The Notwist's Neon Golden taking the number two spot. I bought these on the same day. As perfect as Up In Flames is for pretty much any mood, as I'm discovering, for me it is this Spring/Summer. Listening to it in a large room with great acoustics, ceiling fan on, window open, Summer approaching, graduation nearing, tension releasing. The first time I heard Crayon I smiled involuntarily. Just the opening following the preceding track. Neon Golden was a bit more melancholy, but still good. It's been a year for happiness. The stuff that makes me happy is always going to have an edge. I'm thinking the best thing I bought this year to come out in the past would've been The Velvet Underground's Loaded, Fully Loaded Edition. Those first three songs on the first disc... Total joy, my friends.

Oh god, the concerts. I didn't see nearly as many, but let's talk about the ones I saw while living in Philly this Summer. The day after I turned 18, I saw Sonic Youth and Wilco at Penn's Landing, sold cheap tickets by a scalper. I got drunk on my own dehydration and chalked it up to feedback fucking with my inner ear. That ruled. Then waiting, in the nightclub district, seeing a drunk girl being carried by her friends, she losing a shoe, and the the friend saying something to someone about making sure she didn't swallow her tongue. I saw The Dismemberment Plan, FINALLY, at the TLA, the last show on the U.S. tour if you don't count Washington, D.C. which would be the smart thing to do, but let's try to make it more monumental than it was. They kicked ass too. Walking home to Mike's house, feeling alive, talking to two girls who saw the show but I didn't know, we just both liked The Plan. I saw Ween, too. They ruled. Old people in the audience, close to me, me wanting to scream along with "You Fucked Up" into their faces.

Living with my brother, that was pretty cool. Finally feeling relaxed. Walking everywhere. Yeah there was the mugging and my brother was an asshole many many times but let's gloss over all that.

Fucking life, man! Holy shit! I graduated, turned 18, moved to Philadelphia, moved to Olympia and went to college. Met new friends. Left my family behind, which rules, and I recommend it to anyone.

Oh god, and there was that last issue of the school newspaper. Me getting my kicks. The nicest thing I ever did. Pissing off the principal. Fuck all the English class bullshit, which was sad, but that just makes the whole "getting-the-fuck-out-of-high-school" bit so much better, right? It does. 3 on the AP test. Good enough for a fuck you, right? Good enough for college credits, good enough for a fuck you. If no one else in the class had taken the test it would've been so much better, but whatever. Not doing the movie for my senior project, but passing anyway. Making fun of my interim science teacher's rock band. Generally, I didn't get as many teenage kicks senior year as junior year, but at the end of senior year, I GOT THE FUCK OUT. That's such a good ending. What a capper.
Oh, so you know those plans that I was so excited about I had to write about them online, just to share my excitement with the world, despite my being aware that even my sure things fall through? Well guess what kids. They fell through. No BSS or BTS in my immediate future. On the good side: If I still lived in Philly, where bands played with a good deal of frequency, my plans to see both of these bands probably would've gotten fucked up anyway, because my plans get fucked up.

Note to self: Never get excited about anything ever again.
I haven't been doing a lot of writing lately. The writing I have been doing is pretty crap, and this is what bums me out. Let's do an inventory, just of the stuff that I've started writing, not of the ideas for epic screenplays, etc.

There's Gasmask, the novel. It's crap, but with a really good idea/ending behind it that I like and thought I would be able to make work. But, even before I started it, I had a fear that it would garner Chuck Palahniuk comparisons from anyone who read it. This becomes more distasteful when you think about how bad a writer he is. I wanted to fill it up with Tom Robbins-style verbal linguistics and odd metaphors, but that would require talent. As it stands now, it's just canned misanthropy and no plot. I also need to do research about the making of amphetamines before I progress further. I mentioned to Evie that this book I'm writing sucks, and she pointed out that of course, the novel you write when you're 18 is going to suck, and that was such a duh fucking duh moment. And now I'm aware of it. I don't want to move on, because the thing I move onto will probably also suck. And I don't want to keep fighting this thing. So I'm moving on kind of, but I really wish I could get Chapter Six (the last thing I wrote) into some kind of shape. This is not to say that it's worse than the other chapters. The whole thing is really weak.

Then there's that short story, Shoppe. Did you know that I've read some Raymond Carver this year? Did you know I enjoyed it? No? That's because you haven't read the very little I have written. It's kind of an improvement because it gets past one of my weaknesses- my incredibly fast, hyper-compressed, no description at all, pacing. There's nothing in it that seems like me, though. There's no humor, no weirdness. There's an erotic-cake salesman. And the little research I've done suggests that the first sentence, which I really liked when I wrote it, is a total lie. I kind of hate the opening now. Here it is: "I've seen a lot of disgusting things in my day, and some of them, I've etched in sugar." Yeah. Feel free to tell me your thoughts on that sentence. But let's move on.

There's the six-page essay. That is not a lot of pages. But it is when you have nothing to say, really. I have an idea which I could turn into a one-page response paper. That is all.

The thing I'm most psyched on is the comic script, Patterns Emerge. This is the most "way-of-living-It's-the-way-I'm-living-right-now" thing. Kids and concerts and going nowhere. I started it in high school and it's proceeded to stall, with many of the ideas for dialogue forgotten. I want to get through the first chapter before Christmas. After the first chapter it gets weirder, which is what I'm looking forward to, as I can't really relate to it anymore. That first sentence describing the content? Kind of a lie in that my life is nothing like it right now. My life right now alternates between doing jackshit and freaking out about how much what I write sucks.

I kind of wish I could do what I did in the past, just crap out these little goofs with no artistic process but my friends seem to like. I haven't done that for a while. I don't really want to do it, except for the fact that these are the things that I look back on after a month and go "Hey, that was pretty good." When I look back at Gasmask, which I PUT THOUGHT INTO, I just go "this is pretty terrible."

Artistic progression doesn't seem to be happening, no matter how hard I push.

Sunday, November 09, 2003

So here's the latest in regards to Home Movies: Season four episodes will begin to be shown on January 11th. Kind of. See, the episode shown on January 11th will be shown on November 11th, at 3 AM. It's a "stealth premiere." Apparently, me and my friends are the only people who watch this show, and the ratings suck so much that episodes of The Oblongs are going to be shown until January. However. That November 11th screening will be watched. It's this monday (well, it might be Tuesday, maybe, the schedule is fucked on the Adult Swim website). This will be watched, and there will be laughing (BUT NO TALKING, oh there will be no talking) and then, when it's done, maybe some crying, because, dude, what a great show.

Saturday, November 08, 2003

Built To Spill are indeed playing Seattle November 17th. And it's an all-ages show, and it's $15, and it is a Dub Narcotic benefit.

Broken Social Scene are playing Seattle as well, on November 13th. $10, hopefully all ages, I don't even know.

I really would like to see both of these shows. And it might even happen, if all goes well. Could this be one of the oft-documented "Brian being filled with false hopes for plans that can't really be planned and just hoping all works out for the best" plans?
I had an idea for a short story. No plot yet. Just a character, not even fully rounded. But the character aspect I've worked out I like, because it seems a neglected area. It's all too easy to write stories from the perspective of writers, aspiring or successful; or about high school/college students.

But how many stories have been written from the perspective of an erotic cakes salesman? Eh? Not that many, I'd wager.

Anyway, the story's tentatively titled "Shoppe" and I don't know if I'll ever write it. Actually, I'm relatively sure it'll never get finished.

Wednesday, November 05, 2003

Here's something interesting I came across on someone at this college's iTunes: A mash-up of Aaliyah and Smart Went Crazy, called Aaliyah Went Crazy. I wasn't able to identify either song, due to my lack of Aaliyah knowledge and being much more familiar with Smary Went Crazy's lyrics than the musical backing behind those lyrics. This is not to say that Smart Went Crazy don't have interesting music, as they do, but... whatever, I'm just dumb. Anyway, the music was pretty string-heavy and seemed to go along pretty well with the Aaliyah ditty glued on top. Not being familiar with the original, I don't know how much it adds by the new context, etc.

But it was something I hadn't even heard of existing, so it was a nice little discovery. I thought I'd share.
More thoughts on that girl I talked about yesterday. Like the previous day's posting, it's just going to be one thought, which will hopefully relate to larger things.

It's going to be hard for her to impress me. There's a lot of awesomeness, cuteness, etc. on the surface that there's nothing awesome or cute that she could like and I would think more of her for it. I'm sure if I lent her a copy of Craig Thompson's Goodbye, Chunky Rice, she'd really enjoy it. I'm sure she liked Rushmore. These are stereotypes for someone like her, but are surprising in other people. One of the great things about Diana is how she dressed very fashion, very "I go to the mall," but was still a fan of independent movies, etc. That's me dealing in cliches, but there's some people who read this who don't know her, so I'm just going to go with that example. Not like that's even a surprising thing, it's only if you only see people as stereotypes etc. that it's a deal. But the thing is, you do see stereotypes, and there's certain expectations. It's so much better when someone defies the expectation, breaks their stereotype. You are your dichotomy, your personality's juxtaposition of unlike elements is what makes you a fully-rounded human being.

One of the reasons I dress bland as hell, kind of on the geeky side, in fact, is so it's so much better when I say "man, Wire are a great band." If I dressed well, with plastic frames for my glasses, it would be expected of me that yeah, I like Built To Spill a lot. It's better to be an awesome person than to be a caricature of an awesome person. Maybe caricature isn't the best word, but I've overused the word "stereotype."

Tuesday, November 04, 2003

Here's something I wasn't completely sure I was going to post, I needed to articulate it in text, and I'm going to post it, because rather than the personal solipsistic bullshit that I hate and try to avoid, I think I came up with my statement on the whole male-female relationship thing.

And ooh, it's personal, so pretty much everyone from Pennsylvania who I never talked about things of a personal nature with can be all "what has washington done to you" This is a direct quote from Diana, and was great, because it made me feel super-alienated from her, and she's one of my closer friends. So, yeah, without further ado, let's start talking about what we talk about when we talk about love:

Girl named Laura. Evie said she could see me with someone adorable, and this is precisely the kind of shit she meant. Indie-rockin vegetarian girl who I saw on Halloween decked out pretty solidly in pink and green, bike with tape to fit this color scheme. This is not her costume, these are just her favorite colors. The kind of girl who Tullycraft’s “Twee” reminds you of if you’re familiar with that song and the kind of person described therein.

And I’m not super-psyched on her. Kind of thing where, if she dug me, I’d be pretty happy with that situation. That would be a good situation. If she weren’t, which is how things appear at this point, I wouldn’t lose sleep. I’d get more sleep, knowing her stance. It wouldn’t even go back to being friends, it would shift back to being acquaintances, because people don’t date their friends, oh no, that’s a bad idea, that’s a bad scene that can only lead to disaster.

But let’s just go with that first “what if” as it’s the more monumental of these two thoughts. It would be such a normal relationship, and I mean that in the shittiest way possible. Regular boy/girl romantic relationships are retarded because of all the arbitrary shit. Like “I love you” is a bad thing to say. I love everyone I don’t hate, pretty much. There are people I love just because they make jokes or say amazing things. But these aren’t the people that you date, oh no. You date whoever’s available and relatively attractive and it’s a fucking load of horseshit. “I love you” is something that might not be true at first. It’s something that needs to be built to. These boy-girl relationships don’t start with love, that’s just something you hope comes along. It’s like the bullshit for a doctoral dissertation, where you have some idea and then research the hell out of it to find out if that’s the way it is.

Here’s my point: You should date your friends, because your boyfriend is an asshole.
So my friend Thor comes in, with Notwist and Minutemen CDs in hand, returns them to me, and say "Thank you, Brian Nicholson, for the fiber-optic CDs that you gave me." It was pretty fucking awesome. This followed up two incidents of attempted references in conversation for the other person's benefit that the other person missed. The first, being my advice to a sad friend that "maybe partying will help" a reference which now makes sense because he's heard Double Nickels On The Dime. The other being his reference to Shellac's Prayer To God, "just fucking kill him" which was pretty subtle, but I don't listen to Shellac, so I didn't catch it, even though I know about that song.

Here's the point: We are some cool cats.

Monday, November 03, 2003

As I laid in bed, I realized that "friends with benefits" is a really stupid phrase. But then I thought: What if "benefits" meant what it does in regards to a job? Like friends came with dental plans. That would be rad. And then I thought, gee, this should be on the internet.

Which of these thoughts is more pathetic?

Sunday, November 02, 2003

Much to my chagrin, this blog has been functioning more as a livejournal, do to my inability to say things that are smart and matter to people, like criticism. I almost posted my AIM rant to Alex about how the first Weezer album (which general consensus seems to have labeled the good one, but I still think it sucks, for reasons that will be expounded upon not in parentheses... RIGHT NOW) is just a watered-down hybrid of Doolittle by The Pixies and Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain, by Pavement. But then I decided not to. But my latest AIM conversation with Alex will now be posted, edited slightly, for clarity and effect.

waffle4223: I just saw the worst iTunes genre classification.
AndrewWKIsntGood: what was it?
waffle4223: One Beat by Sleater- Kinney, is Rock/Pop. but Dig Me Out... is Riot Grrrl/Queercore
waffle4223: QUEERCORE
waffle4223: what.
waffle4223: the.
waffle4223: FUCK!
AndrewWKIsntGood: ohhhh man
AndrewWKIsntGood: you can add core to anything
waffle4223: my friend jason should start a fatcore band
AndrewWKIsntGood: yes
waffle4223: they'd be ghettoized by their first single, which would of course be about pie.
AndrewWKIsntGood: only pie?
waffle4223: just the first single
waffle4223: one song
waffle4223: then they'd sing songs about, you know, other stuff.
waffle4223: like politics.
AndrewWKIsntGood: i mean pie is good and all, but 3 minutes just about pie?
AndrewWKIsntGood: i don't see it working
waffle4223: you're not a great song-writer, that's your problem.
AndrewWKIsntGood: i can't imagine keeping someones interest in pie for 3 minutes
waffle4223: My friend can probably get more mileage out of pie than he can out of, say "love"
waffle4223: there'd be music too.
AndrewWKIsntGood: well yeah
AndrewWKIsntGood: derr
waffle4223: what if it were about the joy of having a burrito for lunch and having pie for dessert to your lunch?
waffle4223: it could be called "burritos and pie"
AndrewWKIsntGood: ok that could easily work
waffle4223: but I'm getting distracted.
waffle4223: but we are pigeonholing them into the category of fatcore.
waffle4223: which is kind of the point.
waffle4223: So even if their first full-length doesn't mention eating food at all
waffle4223: it'll still be there, under the surface.
AndrewWKIsntGood: hey you call yourself fatcore, youve got expectations to meet
waffle4223: no, the music press (and iTunes) will call them fatcore.
waffle4223: they'll be all "We're just a rock band, man"
waffle4223: but people will listen to the album, and they'll appreciate the songs not about food, because they'd be good songs.
waffle4223: but they'd nonetheless be thinking "this band... they like pie"
AndrewWKIsntGood: wow
waffle4223: now change "pie" to "vaginas" and now you know what it's like to be sleater-kinney.

Saturday, November 01, 2003

This is where I'm from.

I was going to write about my day, and how I want to steal precocious children from their asshole parents before they ruin them, but no. I will just say that Philadelphia is my city, my fucking city, and to hate Philadelphia is to hate all that is good and pure. By good and pure I actually mean something that is so the complete opposite of good and pure, but comes out beautiful regardless.

Thursday, October 30, 2003

So a few weeks ago, I wrote a little thing for the school newspaper about the low-quality of the food here, and how swiss cheese should not be on quesadillas. People liked it.

Today I go down to the cafeteria, and one of the foods available for consumption was three-cheese lasagna.

Me: What are the cheeses included?
woman (1): mozzarella, you know, a basic lasagna cheese.
Me: But it says there's three. (I point)
woman(1): Oh, I'll go check.
[woman(1) exits]
woman (2): Have you been helped?
me: Yeah, I just asked what are the cheeses in the lasagna, she's finding out.
woman (2): are you the guy who doesn't like swiss cheese?
me: Yeah...
woman (2) you're our worst enemy.
me: I'm a dick.
woman (2) [to another employee]: he's the one that wrote that article. [to me]: why do you still eat here?
Me: I've got this meal card, you know?
woman (2): yeah, i understand. I want to fill up your car with swiss cheese, your sleeping bag. just, melted
Me: I don't mind being smothered with swiss cheese while I sleep, I'm just not big on eating it.
woman (2): I asked my grandmother if she puts swiss cheese on her quesadillas, she lives in .New Mexico, she said yes.
Me: well, your grandmother is lame. (I almost called her retarded, but decided that lame was much less offensive, and I kind of trailed off as I said it anyway)
woman (2): she told me to do this (gives me the finger with her gloved hand)

I should point out that this exchange was largely jovial in nature. I should also point out that woman (1) returned and told me the cheeses, listing three but saying there was one she forgot. One that she named was cottage cheese, which seemed kind of odd but whatever. I bought the lasagna and some ice tea. The lasagna tasted terrible, as the noodles were undercooked and hard to chew. I feel like there's a dead animal in my mouth, and not like chicken or some kind of tasty dead animal; it's like my mouth is where a raccoon goes to die after receiving some kind of wound.

That's a pretty accurate depiction of what happened, but some of the sequencing might be off. The thing about her wanting my life filled with swiss cheese is very much what happened, as is her giving me the finger, and my feeling this mixture of sheepishness of everyone realizing who I was and pride at finally having made myself an enemy.

I feel like I should give a shout-out to my friend Thor, who said that this blog was one of his five favorites on Internet Explorer. When I said that it was whiny, he said that it wasn't whiny, but was wry.

So thanks Thor. You might not be the god of thunder that is your namesake, but you are truly a king of awesome.

Wednesday, October 29, 2003

My roommate's watching I Love the '80s Strikes Back. Here's what's cool: They just covered some kinda' underground-ish music. I appreciate this because maybe now there will be more people my age who associate 80s music with more than just fucking Men Without Hats. It was the underground that was on the upswing in 88: They were talking about REM, Jane's Addiction, Sonic Youth. The Sonic Youth was what surprised me enough to actually make me say "yes." the riff from Teenage Riot got played, and Michael Ian Black complained about their dissonance. REM wasn't really underground by 1988, but it nonetheless made me happy to hear them being discusses, even though Green for the most part sucks.

Here's my point: Sonic Youth got talked about VH1. Yeah, VH1 fucking sucks, but I'm just happy to see Sonic Youth in any kind of context.
Just want to clear something up for those people here at college who don't know me very well, or I should say, who do know me very well, and just don't know my past.

The self-deprecation is not fishing for compliments. I don't do that. At high school, I appreciated a select group of people going "Brian jokes, but he's really a good person deep deep down." But I liked that there were a lot of people who probably just viewed me as comedian guy. And then there was the large group that hated me. It's shallow, but it's what I'm comfortable with. I know that people wouldn't hang out with me if they thought I was a total asshole, that can go unspoken. I feel so much more comfortable when I know there are people that think I'm a total dick. For one thing: Most of what I put forth is an asshole pose. I've said this before, but maybe not everyone has heard it: You can't express the sum total of your personality at once, so everything is a pose. If people have seen the part of me that's a good person, when most of what I put forth is TOTAL ASSHOLISHNESS and being contrary, it's like people have seen me naked. Way too many people have seen me naked.

For another thing: It's totally hilarious when people aren't in on the joke, especially when the people not in on the joke suck ass. Everyone is in on the joke, it seems. That joke isn't even some kind of complicated Kaufman-esque gag, it's the fact that sarcasm is completely different from being earnest. I really thought a lot of people at this school wouldn't get that. I expected this to cause me lots of giggles. Maybe some pain and whatever, but mainly just laughter. I can say the thing about hating hippies, no one gets that that's mainly in jest.

Of course, this thing exists, when is pretty much sarcasm-free. But the audience is limited, and everyone knows what my deal is. Well, the people I go to college don't know how many enemies I made, or how much joy that caused me. To both of these things the answer is the same amount: A lot. Why? Because I'm a dick, goddammit, a total fucking asshole.

Tuesday, October 28, 2003

So I have to write a one-page response paper to The House Of Mirth by tomorrow. I bought the book today, read 99 pages, and started my response on stuff that hasn't even occurred yet. Because I don't have any real information, I think I blew my load in my introductory paragraph.

So here I am, listening to Le Tigre on headphones, even though I'm not a lesbian, and writing this.

If anyone's going to be around Philadelphia for Thanksgiving, they should see Liars live at the First Unitarian Church. And if anyone reading this actually lives in the area, they should go to the Manitoba/Broadcast show, not to mention the Yo La Tengo show, or the Built To Spill show.

You know what I want to do? Rock.

But instead it looks like I'm just going to go to sleep. That is to say, not rock.

Sunday, October 26, 2003

There wasn't any food I wanted to eat at that little happening. So I came home to an empty floor, browsed around iTunes and found a dude with a copy of The Notwist's Shrink and put it on. I thought I heard some doors open and I was all "Hey, people," but it turned out just to be friends of Ian, the douche that everyone hates.

I am a good judge of character, in that I was the first person to hate him. He was talking to my roommate about role-playing, and I thought "this dude's fucking pathetic." Then he was hitting on some girls in that cheap sexual innuendo kind of way and I thought "this dude's fucking creepy. and unfunny." Then I heard a story that he narc'ed out a group of people, including many a friend of mine, that was smoking pot. Now everyone hates him. I was on the forefront.

So now I'm back, and um, The Notwist are good.

I've written way too fucking much in this thing today. Someone shoot me. Or just grab hold of me and make me do stuff. Otherwise I write. Not a book, not a short story, not a script, just this narcissistic bullshit. People read it, but I can't imagine anyone likes all of it. Shout-outs to bands no one's heard of? Shout-outs to cartoonists, the same thing? Re-telling of stories that everyone I go to school with here has already heard told?

When I wrote "this is a character assassination," as a description of this blog's content, I was wrong. This is masturbation.

Saturday, October 25, 2003

So tonight at the college is a little school-sponsored event entitled the Fall Ball. Dress is "As formal as you wanna be" meaning, in my case, not fucking very. I asked two people if going, getting food, and then leaving was a douche thing to do. And both said no. Both these people are planning to go, and it would be their fun I would be wrecking with my not-dancing, wearing the same thing I wore all day, and thinking about how much I hate gatherings.

However, I have resolved this much: Not to talk about my hatred of gatherings at the large gathering. See, I am slowly learning the ins and outs of social decorum.

Not that I'm becoming less anti-social. In fact, I'm probably becoming more so. Now, rather than talk about my hatred of gatherings in the hopes of meeting some kindred spirit and actually having a genuine human connection (which is always what it was, it was never just catharsis and misanthropy) I'll write about it for the fucking internet and my small audience (let's say five people read this) of people I've already met and talk to on a regular basis so I can type it out and not have this actual conversation with them.

You know what softens the blow of the Saturday night home alone? Blasting music out of your stereo. FedEx picked it up last week for inspection to see if they owed money, but instead of doing that, they shipped it back to New Jersey.

No blow is softened, my own personal cancer remains uncured. And so concludes this broadcast. I was thinking I'd have this thing online for a week and then just have it self-destruct but I think I'm going to self-destruct instead.
I woke up from a nap and drank some juice (Nantucket Nectars' Pineapple Orange Banana). I feel so energized, such a good feeling, like my body's made of rubber bands. I want to smash my face against a window. I have all this energy and no real way to release, I want to tear myself apart but not in a self-destructive way. I want to walk through the streets screaming Pavement songs, which is a constant feeling, but now more than ever.

Every building same height, Every street a straight line

If this doesn't feel as energized as it seems like it's supposed to, it's because I lost this post and had to retype from memory. I still do feel that way, only right now it's coupled with wanting to take a shit. It's a weird combo. My ass is full but my arms want to freak the fuck out.
Two words: Goth party. There's a goth party on campus. I don't even know how goths exist at Evergreen- how can you hate everything when acid makes everything so beautiful and full of light? But apparently they do.

In the interest of hilarity, I decided to go investigate with the people I am planning Breakfast Party with. (we make breakfast and we eat it and music plays. Music I own!) One of these dudes is named Cameron. Cameron is a very happy enthusiastic hippy who had the idea of Breakfast Party. He was wearing a V-neck cardigan sweater thing that I'm sure is quite soft. It was light blue. So me and Cameron went to Goth Party.

On the way I asked if anyone had a Sharpie so I could write "I Hate The Smiths" or "Bauhaus Fucking Sucks" on my undershirt/skin. No one did, but on my way in, I said something about hating Bauhaus. Some goth girl laughed but there might not be a direct connection.

There was black electrical tape forming a pentagram on the door. Bang on the door and the door gets opened. Red light and smoke. And cut up black plastic hangs from the ceiling. And garbage bags are taped to the walls. Not filling any one wall, they're just kind of there. I go, I laugh, I see people from my floor who rock Ecko clothing and bust freestyle rhymes and I laugh some more. I make my way towards the door and I can't escape. More people are coming in, including people I'm friends with. I'm sure they were all pretty drunk. I leave, because no one wanted to hear my jokes about goths sucking ass.

But you do, my internet friends.

That said, if they had been playing Liars- Fins To Make Us More Fish-Like (who aren't goth but are dark and INTENSE like goths and dancey so it's a party, hence it would be perfect for GOTH PARTY)
I would've gotten the funk out.

Speaking of getting the funk out, when I went to the comic shop on wednesday, the clerk guy asked if I was the dude who just moved here who was friends with Jim Mahfood. I said no, but the clerk says "yeah, there's some dude who moved here who's friends with Jim Mahfood, he asked that if he comes up to visit or something, would the store want to do a signing? I said yeah." So yeah, Jim Mahfood's pretty fucking cool. Also: the store has like a comics fair thing in March or something. In 2003, the guests of honor were Craig Thompson and Gilbert Hernandez. I was so worried about this shop being super-suck-ass and geeky because its name is Danger Room Comics.

The irony is that no one knows who Jim Mahfood, Craig Thompson, or Gilbert Hernandez are and I am coming off like the biggest geek in the world. I am aware.

But seriously, consider the geeks at The Evergreen State College Goth Party. (sure, I was one of them technically, but, FUCK YOU!) My roommate's there now. I told him there was a girl wearing a VNV Nation t-shirt and that was the clincher, he just had to go. Today's his birthday. He's going home in the morning. I'm going to Breakfast Party where I will rock the pancakes (and the Built To Spill, Sonic Youth, Manitoba, Neutral Milk Hotel and Pavement that people told me to bring) something fierce.

Thursday, October 23, 2003

You should all read The Believer and Arthur. These are the only things that matter, for these are the only things that are good and pure.

Arthur is free. The Believer is not. Hence, I don't actually own any copies of The Believer.
Someone just walked into my room and informed me that tomorrow, at 12:30, is Topless Revolution. Everyone take off their shirt, be comfortable with their skin, etc. I predict the gender breakdown to be 90% male at this event. That is all.

That seems so inconsequential a thing to post, but let me explain why it needed to be said: That is how life works.

Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Best compliment I have ever received: Evie Nelson on a piece I wrote and had published in the school newspaper: "It's very 'I read McSweeney's.'"

It's an even better compliment for not even being, you know, real. It doesn't say my writing is good on its own merits, or even that it had any of the kind of quality one would find in McSweeney's.

Just that I'm a hack.

But a hack for Things That Are Awesome.

Oh- I listened to that Rapture record I mentioned yesterday, and it's not that good.

I sure do start off paragraphs with the word "Oh" a lot. See any e-mail I have ever sent for more examples of this.
Good day for new music. New Shins record out, Echoes came out, a Yo La Tengo EP, the Hedwig And The Angry Itch tribute thing came out, the new Blow record, and the new Strokes record.

None of which I will buy in the foreseeable future. The Shins record eventually, and maybe the Rapture as well. But I just listened to the Strokes record, and it's not very good. I'm not a music critic at all, just an opinionated asshole, and yeah, not. very. good.

Both of these articles are really interesting. How weird is it that the guy who brought up the draft legislation is a Democrat, and maybe not even a total dick?
There's a drum circle outside my window.

I didn't think it would be this bad, really I didn't. I really don't even want to have one of these damn things, too much navel-gazing. But fuck, when there's a drum circle beating in your brainpan, what are you supposed to do?

I guess this will be read largely by my friends, who now have every right to hate me. This is terrible.

So here's the summary, which brings us to where we are now. Spent most of my life in the suburbs of Philadelphia, with the past summer actually being spent in Philadelphia, living with my brother. Then I moved to Olympia, Washington to go to The Evergreen State College.

Today in The OlyWa, Olympia's free newspaper du jour, there was a review of the book Sex, Drugs, And Cocoa Puffs, the book by Chuck Klosterman, ex-editor of Spin. Apparently, in the book, there's a line about people attending Evergreen because they don't want to attend life.

I'm of two minds about this. The first mind says "Fuck you, dude that was involved with Spin, you totally unfunny if-only-I-was-Douglas-Coupland asshole." And continues on that tip for a while. The second says "well, that's what I've always thought college was."

And when I say "always," I mean since sophomore year of high school.

Oh, so in the realm of good news, iTunes is available for PCs now. I downloaded it, and am able to access other people's music in a much easier way than dicking around on the workgroup network bit. I'm listening to Dinosaur Jr.'s Bug on my headphones now. I wish someone had You're Living All Over Me, as I've been feeling the urge to hear In A Jar.

The Olympia economy sucks though, jobs are hard to find, and CDs are 2-3 dollars more here than they would be at AKA Music or Spaceboy in Philadelphia. (this is before sales tax, which is 8.8%) I've decided not to buy any more music or rent any more DVDs until I go home for Christmas break. Just stuff I can't get for free, like books and comics and food.

Oh hey, in the between-track lull, I could discern that my roommate's listening to the All-American Rejects. Ugh.

I met a dude tonight who was posting flyers. He's from Omaha, and is going to try to get The Faint to come here. The Faint aren't good either, but I'd see them, probably. Just to seek refuge from the hippies.