th road ends in water: bridging th gap b-tween th real world (2007 NYC) + 5¢ense
2/4/2022> thi5 = IT... R journals from 2007 = la5t gap in R ar¢hive, now th arↄhive = ¢omplete > we = 100% po5t-humun + anonymous now, th do¢umented ∫ummation of R N-tire life Ǝxists online, on Inurnet az HTML > we onely logged 2 journal entries (othrs were already logged in ∫um form on 5cense) from 2007 so az w/ 2006 we'll fill in th gap5 from Ↄalamari news + Ǝxisting 5cense po5ts + fla5hes 2 piece 2gether a chronillogic timeline (unlike Inurnet feeds dat R typically in riverse order)2 frame th po5ts
> picking up from 2006, Xmas (+ R 10th anniversary) we left 4 Morocco > New Years Eve we spent in in th Kasbah of Ouarzazate
> s∞n thereafter we returned to NYC (still living in the East Village + working as N Information Architect 4 BMG/Columbia House)
> @ ∫um point in early
January of 2007 we migr8ed 5cense content 2 it'5 one 5erver... «No more piggy-backing on Sleepingfish» az st8ed > we 5tarted po5ting b∞k reviews dat eq8ed more 2 engagements w/ th text + often di5tractions of R immmediate Nvironment autobiographically influenzed th posts, az in this «review» dat B-came more abt th mouse dat lived in R wall in th East Village > we also 5tarted po5ting interviews w/ authors + artists where weed supply 1 word + they'd give N answer off th top of their head, here's 1 we did w/ Garielle Lutz + anothr w/ Noy Holland [mayB we shd 5tart these back up... N-E 1 game?]
2/16/2007> published Part of the World by Robert Lopez (broLo 5till hasn't 4given us 4 publiↄhing it s0 s∞n aftr The Revisionist)
2/21> publiↄkly released the 1st Ↄalamari Arↄhive «e¢onomy of words» earning$ report, a tradition we'd continue every year going 4word (5tay tuned 4 tax year 2021, s∞n)
[ 1st Calamari earnings report 2004–2006, where eXpenditures = dubble R in¢ome ]
3/1> went w/ Robert Lopez 2 R 1st AWP in Atlanta > we din't blog ⊕ journal abt it but we @ least made enough money 2 pay 4 R table + met a lot of cool ppl... B4 AWP B-came lame
[ th onely foto we took @ AWP Atlanta ]
> we didn't log a journal entry until May, but in March 2007 we were still in th East Village, eMbroiled in court w/ R asshole slumlord (see th 2006 post 4 ∫um of th 5hit we were dealing with) > on 3/26 we rote thi5 letter witch ∫ummarizes the 5hit we were dealing with (w/ NYC Housing Dept in CC):
Dear [Asshole slumlord];
We are tenants of 202 East 7th St. Apt 1-D AGAIN requesting an abatement of $2500 for the lack of heat and hot water which we experienced for most of the month of December (copy of this letter is again included), to which you never responded, and for ongoing problems we continue to experience.
In January you began construction on the apartment unit above us, completely gutting the apartment. On a daily basis we’ve had large quantities of dust and debris and mice droppings in our apartment that sifts through the cracks in the walls and the gaps in the heating pipes. We have to cover our computers and electronics and clean up the mess on a daily basis. I have asked the super to try to keep the level of debris down, but he has done nothing.
In addition to the numerous water leaks we had last year, we are still having leaks in different places this year. The first, in mid-February, was in our front office room, and I came home to find the light fixture full of water and water leaking onto my printer and near our computers. I called Dennis and he never called me back. On another occasion towards the end of February, the water was streaming all night into our bathroom from a pipe that the workers had left running. And last week, I came home to find the water leaking again in the bathroom, this time the light fixture was full of water, and our rug was completely soaked and had to be sent to the cleaners.
In mid-January there was a mouse stuck in the space in the wall above our bedroom door, presumably trapped from the construction work they were doing. I told the Super and he said he would come by to extract it and he never came, so I had to extract it ourselves, cutting a hole in the wall and then buying the necessary materials to patch it up, this after losing two nights sleep because of the mouse scratching at the wall all night and Dennis never coming to take care it like he said he would. A few weeks later we heard another mouse trapped in the light fixture above our bed. Again I told Dennis, and again he did nothing as we heard it again the next night.
We have heard people taking residence in the apartment above us. While they have been remodeling the apartment they have not been locking the door, and people have been coming in off the street and spending nights there. On one occasion, in the beginning of March, we found urine streaming down our heating pipe, that was causing an extremely foul odor as you can imagine, presumably caused by either the squatters living there, or the workers.
Because of the remodeling in the past few months, they have frequently shut off the hot water or turned off the water altogether. One day we went for 24 hours without any water.
We have had no heat or inadequate heat since the beginning of March. Two weeks ago I notified the super of the issue in person, but he did not turn the heat up or come by to see why we weren’t getting heat. In the past few weeks we have been without hot water on four separate occasions. We have called Dennis nightly (on his new cell number) for the past three nights to tell him we still have no heat but he has not returned our calls. Last night the temperature outside was in the 20s and it wasn’t much warmer in our apartment. I was forced to again call the city to report this lack of heat, the case number is 3766760.
We pay too much rent to continuously live with these kind of issues, under these conditions, and feel we deserve to be compensated for all the hardships we have endured over the past year which we have documented in numerous letters. We will withhold rent for the next month until we are advised from you.
> we als0 had a tradition wherein we'd take a foto of the same wall @ Ludlow + Rivington in th Lower East Side each time we released N issue of Sleepignfish, 2 C how th wall evolved over time > thi5 = th wall in April 2007:
May 1, 2007 – NYC
It’s been a while since I’ve logged a journal entry. My past ten journal entries have probably started that way. I don’t think I’ve written one since being at BMG. That’s where I am writing this from right now. In the template of a functional spec, in track changes mode, to make it look like I’m actually doing something. I’ve been here for like what, over 6 months now? But this is my last week. Its been pretty boring and there’s not much to say about it except that it’s a sterile environment, I work for the marketing department, and the products I work on (Columbia House and YourMusic) are kind of evil. But it pays well, and I’ve had some flexibility like being able to take one day off a week lately. Next week I start working at Heavy.com (a video-upload social media site, like a cross between Youtube + Facebook), a FT gig with insurance and all that. Should be nice, I hope, but I’ll be working elbow to elbow with hipsters so probably won’t be able to write stories or in my journal at work like this.
[ eggsample of th kind of 5tuff we did 4 BMG ... more IA/UI/UX samples here ]
The other big change is that we moved. Last time I wrote in my journal was probably when we almost went to Africa. Obviously that didn’t happen. bedder-½ started her MPH and we stuck it out in the EV, had a completely miserable living situation, we had no heat til mid-december, and even after that it was sporadic and we had all sorts off issues. For most of February and March they started doing construction on the apartment above ours. We were not compensated whatsoever, and probably logged 20 or 30 complaints with the city to no avail. Our landlord was the biggest dick I’ve ever known in my life. Seriously evil slumlord. I’m saying all this in retrospect, but we were so stuck in that mindset for a year, your living situation really effects your general outlook on life, and it was maknig us pretty miserable, not having a place to go home to where you felt comfortable and dry and quiet. The Lower East Side and East Village in general just seemed to be the focal point of evil for the city. Some day I’ll write a book about it. I probably should have been taking notes.
Last Thursday we woke up, we were supposed to move Friday, but we were watching the forecast and it was supposed to rain, so we decided to do it then. Called Penske and they had a truck at 11. We weren’t even done packing so threw everything in boxes. Then I ran and got the truck. Came back and double-parked in front of the hydrant. Moved all our shit down 4 flights of stairs, past all the east village riff-raff. Twice guys just whipped out their dicks and peed on the street right in front of us, as if they were dogs marking their territory, or sent by our landlord to see us off? Once they peed on our truck. Nobody seems to have jobs there, just a bunch of loser low-life animals. It really is fucking armpit, filthy, evil place and we were happy to be moving out of there. Barely fit all our stuff in a 16-ft Penske, we seemed to have accumulated more and more stuff—a lot of it books from the press, though, I’d say 15-20 boxes of just that. And we sold our couch on craigslist. And gave a bunch of our CDs and books to Edgar, the junkie Peruvian bike messenger who sells his records on our stoop. Funny how we tend to meet people as we are moving out, usually when we are getting rid of our shit.
The apartment of course we got through Carlos. There was a phase we went through, around last December, when we didn’t have heat and were fed up, that we though the solution to our problem was to buy an apartment. We had Carlos looking for us and were looking at a bunch of places. We came close actually to plopping down 350-400k, made offers, got loan guarantees, went through all of that rigamarole, before we realized it was a crazy idea, and weren’t prepared to frantically outbid people, for what? So anyways, we went back to carlos for our rental, and the first thing he found we took, a large one-bedroom on 15 w. 74th street, top floor so no idiots above us and a stones throw from the park and three blocks from Fairway! It’s a world of difference, and its just a little more ($2650) than what we are paying now, but it includes electricity so not that much different really. And we can afford it anyway, and decided if we are going to stay in nyc we need to live right, and having a nice apartment is very important. Its your sanctuary.
So we drove the Penske across town, and then started moving our stuff in, up 5 flights of narrow and steep stairs. And then it occurred to me. We have moved in and out of 5th floor walkups before, but there’s always been an elevator building on one end. 89th street we only moved in (and with hardly anything). Then from the 5th floor walkup of 89th to Parc Vendome, and elevators (and that whole weird underground system). Then out of Parc Vendome to the 6th floor walkup of Thompson street. I remember feeling some pain there afterwards. Then out of Thompson Street to Essex street which had an elevator. And out of Essex to 7th street. So E. 7th street to W. 74th street was down 4 flights and then up 5 flights, with the most possessions we’ve had in nyc. It was brutal. My calves were cramping up. My arms were freaking out and going into involuntary convulsions, I looked like the guy on the cover of Lutz's I Looked Alive. At times I felt like throwing up. My shirt was soaked with sweat and so were my underwear and pants. It was epic. When you think about the sheer bulk of possessions and the height they needed to be carried, the sheer transfer of potential energy that represents, and how two human bodies are able to transfer that energy, it's daunting, and to think all that comes from the energy of food. Its quite amazing. But at the time we were starting to panick. With about an hour to go before we had to return the truck we broke down and bedder-½ called Betsy and Evan, who live in our neighborhood, and Evan runs a lot so we figured he was in good shape unlike most other people we know. So he came and helped us with the final push. Good thing as I had literally hit an unsurmountable wall and couldn’t physically make my muscles do what I wanted them to do.
But we made it. Somehow. And I got the truck back. And We were back in our apartment, got the bed together beneath the window, overlooking the street, in the shadow of the San Remo, where the likes of Bono and Demi Moore live. So quiet I could hear the ringing in my ears, and the buzz of my own nervous system. I haven’t heard that in a long time.
We didn’t have room for our bikes in the truck, so next morning we had to go back down to the east village. It was pouring rain. We cleaned the apartment, took copiuos pictures, then rode our bikes in the pouring rain back. Bedder-½ to work and I went back home. I was drenched. But it was nice to be back in a dry and warm place. We haven’t gotten our deposit back, and who knows if we will. That’s a different story that has consumed our well-being, worrying about that. Can’t wait to just put that all behind us, and it is, but will be complete when we get our deposit back. As it is, we still had to pay rent for 2 weeks when we’re not even there.
During all this I also released the new sleepingfish. Oh, and also got a Mac like a month ago, both bedder-½ and I did. So swapping everything over and learning how to do shit on the Mac, and Dreamweaver, it was all craziness. And we still don’t have internet in our new place, so using pirated wireless, when we can, trying to fix things, and breaking other thigns, and in the past week I’ve been getting 1000 unique visitors a day. So much other stuff, Calamari stuff, released Robert’s book, Miranda’s book, my book, hello! Poste Restante. It got reviewed in The Believer even. Believe it or not. I’m hoping to start on some new projects this summer. Actually do some new writing.
9/16> mongered Calamari @ the Brooklyn Book Festival
> we don't mention the books we read in 2007 in R journals but by 2007 we'd joined Goodreads + logged them there + other books we mentioned reading in R flashes but not included in reading log include: The Open Curtain by Brian Evenson, The Hypochondriacs Pocket Guide to Horrible Diseases You Probably Already Have by Dennis DiClaudio, Neck Deep by Ander Monson, The Giant's Fence by Michael Jacobson , Two Plays for Radio by Norman Lock, The Road by Cormac McCarthy, There Was One & It Was Two by Ric Royer, The Age of Sinatra by David Ohle, The Famished Road by Ben Okri, The Meat and Spirit Plan by Selah Saterstom, The Exquisite by Laird Hunt + numerous literary magazines
[ homepage redsign we did 4 Heavy.com in 2007 ]
Oct. 1, 2007 – NYC (15 W. 74th St.)
Have I logged an entry since I’ve been at Heavy? I can’t remember. But that’s where I am in now. 11 floors above 39th street, near 9th ave. Starting out the window at two buildings under construction. Bedder-½ is in Boston, dealing with contaminated blood samples from Africa. I’ve been here at Heavy since May and it’s now October. I just ate some chile rellenos from up the street at La Poblanita and they were really fucking hot. My belly is still on fire. This was after coming back from the courthouse. I seam to be there a lot lately. Still dealing with the landlord issue from 202 E. 7th street. If I didn’t log a journal entry about that, I don’t know where to begin. We sued, we won because he didn’t show up. Bedder-½ got back from a two or three week trip to Africa like hours before the court time. We won, a $5,000 judgment, but he still hasn’t paid us. So then I had to deal with the City Marshall to collect, to do a “bank levy”. Its all very interesting. Going to these sketchy small offices down on canal street. Or to the court clerks office. It’s amazing how inefficient everything is. Our judicial system is a big farce. They can make a judgment, but it doesn’t mean shit. So now I had to motion to amend the judgment to be against “202 E. 7th Street Realty, LLC” even though that wasn’t what was on our lease. But that’s the name of the bank account.
Last week I was also running around down by the UN area with bedder-½ to get our African visas. Yes, that’s right! We are going to East Africa. Uganda, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda. More on that when we actually go. But it’s been a lot of prepwork. Getting the tickets and visas. Running down to consulates while UN was in session. Pretty much every day in the past two weeks I’ve had some sort of lunch time errand to run like that. I feel like I’m an adult or something.
What else... just put Michael Peters book out a few weeks ago, and Michael Boyko’s is at the printer. Hope to get that out before we go to Africa. I resurrected Our Mother the Fish and made a lot of progress on rewriting it over the summer, but now I seem to be overwhelmed with other stuff again and haven’t had time to look at it in some time. I work from home on Wednesdays which is nice, but still there is so much to do. I had a table at the Brooklyn Book Fair a few weeks ago and sold some books, but barely enough to pay for the table. Everything seems to be a hassle lately. We bought a couch and they sent us a broken one, long funny story, actually, ended up getting 2 couches for the price of 1 out of it, but after a lot of hassle. I bought a Kodak printer a month or so ago and it didn’t work from the getgo, and they couldn’t fix it or refund it. Shit like that. Everything a headache. I feel like a consumer. Today Radiohead announced it’s new album where you pay as much as you want. What a concept. If only everything in our world was that cool. Perhaps they are being naïve or idealistic, but at least they are trying it to see what happens. Whether people will just buy it on the honor system and eliminate all middlemen.
I did a few book covers this summer. One for Gary Lutz chapbook, Partial List of People to Bleach. And I just finished one for a new John Olson book published by Black Widow Press. I’m thinking of selling some artwork online as an experiment. I actually already put Michael Peter’s up online to sell with his book, and someone bought one of his prints. Granted somebody he knew, but still. Might be a lot more viable than selling books.
Bedder-½ has a bit of baby on the brain lately (she's about to turn 40 so it's now or never), but when we weigh the pros and cons we talk ourselves out of it, just like we have for 10 years of not having a dog. Maybe we shouldn't think too much about it? There’s no denying that it would be a new experience, to say the least, to bring a life into this world. And being in a new apartment makes the difference in the world. Wouldn’t be a bad place to raise a baby, whereas any other apartment we had before I would’ve never thought that. Geez, I must have logged an entry about our new apartment? It’s really great. We had barbecues all summer on the roof, kind of like our private roof since the ladder going up to it is right outside our door. Top floor, no noise. The only complaint is the guy below us smokes, but we only get wafts of it occasionally, it wasn’t like Thompson street where we were always breathing it. I mean, the landlord’s son on the 3rd floor smells disgusting and is a freak, but you just have to walk by it and hold your breath. And there’s not that many good restaurants on the UWS, but for the most part we are much happier here. Riding my bike every day to work, it’s an easy ride. Straight down 9th avenue, and riding up 8th avenue home by Port Authority and Time Square, around Columbus Circle. Oh, and I ran a marathon! Over labor day in New Mexico. My time was like 3:49. Not as fast as 10 years ago, but I didn’t train that long and my knee was kind of gimpy. And I joined the Heavy Ballers basketball team! We play once a week against other NYC teams, full court ball with referees and everything.
All is good. My only complaint is that there was more time in a day. What else, the Mets choked big time. Of Epic proportions. The weather is beautiful, has been like all of September. More later, I need to make a habit of this. I’m sure I say that every time…. That and writing in my dream journal.
10/13> started 2 get more in2 video-blogging, made thi5 «Day in the Life» video 2 give N idea of what R lives (+ R UWS apartment + where we worked) were like:
10/19> saw Foals @ Galapagos in Brooklyn—the videos we took R by far th most viewed videos on R youtube channel («2 Steps Twice» has 150K+ views)
10/21> published The Hour Sets by Michael Boyko, here's ∫um of the art we did for it