(ephemeral microbursts too brief and transitory for the full-fledged 5˘ense):
¢ Since brother Markus commented that my tattoo looks like a fish (being the fish head he is), I guess I should reveal the other half of the story. Here's the ink my better half got simultaneously on her arm. Together they could be a fish, though this wasn't the conscious intention. Or her's could be a fish and mine the hook. Mine could be the scale that weighs her fish. They could be a weight sandwich.
¢ Tattoo I got last night. It could be a fucked-up umbrella. Could is the operative word.
¢ I changed the name of the fragmented novel I'm working on from Our Mother the Fish to Our Mother for the Time Being. For the time being, until something else presents itself. I might throw some excerpts up here or send them around to places, so stay tuned. Off to get an image from it tattooed on my arm.
¢ Went to Gyu-Kaku for our 11th anniversary last night.
¢ Image from holiday card I got from BookMobile:
¢ Finally saw No Country for Old Men. It's one of the few McCarthy books I haven't read, so hard to compare it to the book. I'm curious to read the book now. I can handle the violence better in books than I can on film. I'm guessing there is a lot more to the book than we see. Not that the acting and cinematography wasn't good. And of course, the dialogue.
¢ 'Twas the longest night of the year last night. Here's to longer days.
¢ Got a new passport in the mail yesterday. I'm not sure what smells better, a new passport with blank pages, or a crusty old passport with all the pages used up. I guess you could same the same about books. Potential energy versus kinetic energy.
¢ I fell asleep last night in the Hall of North American Mammals at the Natural History Museum. When I woke up I was on the scaffolding outside of the bastion hull on the southeast corner that is under restoration, left wondering where all the genetic material is stored.
¢ Drinking and driving isn't funny, but drinking and riding is.
¢ Saw Tings Dey Happen last night. Dis Dan Hoyle guy him mouth done strong for pidgin o, where him done carry go one time as a Fullbright scholar to study oil politics.
¢ Robert Lopez read with Alexandra Chasin and Eva Talmadge this Wednesday at the Cup & Pen series at Think Coffee. Robert Lopez is of course co-editor of Sleepingfish and author of Part of the World. Alexandra and Eva have also both been in Sleepingfish, in fact, the piece Alexandra had in issue 0.875 is now up on the FC2 site as an excerpt for her newish book, Kissed By.
¢ The Language of Birds: a short film by Jason Martin using the text from Brian Evenson's Altmann's Tongue.
¢ I have a couple pieces in the long-awaited Snow*vigate.
¢ Some of my work was translated in Dutch for Deus Ex Machine 122. Peter Markus and Robert Lopez also had some work translated in the issue, and there is an interview with me that is posted online (for those that speak Dutch).
¢ Jess posted more pictures of faces of Africa on her site.
¢ We may have missed thanksgiving being in Africa, but that didn't stop the Associated Press from running an article about the now infamous "turkey dance" ritual my in-laws perform (though they misspelled Fanzo).
¢ Lillis Distro/Pittsburgh expanded on my "economy of words" posting.
¢ While I was gone, Harp & Altar 3 was releasted with work by both Miranda Mellis & Norman Lock.
November 2007 (On Safari in East Africa)
¢ Getting Out of Africa.
¢ Uploaded the next Mara installment from Amsterdam.
¢ The second afternoon of our safari we saw elephants and cheetahs.
¢ On our second morning we spotted a leopard.
¢ Landed in Masai Mara and our first game drive in Masai Mara we saw the rare black rhino.
¢ On the second try, we made it to Dertu. Back in Nairobi now.
¢ We crossed the equator to Kampala, Uganda. Now we're in Kenya.
¢ Finally was able to upload my last installment from Ethiopia. In Rwanda now.
¢ "Our nation is at a Fork in the Road. Some say we should go Left; some say go Right." Stephen Colbert, reporting for the NY Times, says, “Doesn’t this thing have a reverse gear? Let’s back this country up to a time before there were forks in the road — or even roads. Or forks, for that matter. I want to return to a simpler America where we ate our meat off the end of a sharpened stick."
¢ As Day Same That the the Was Year: an interesting PDF chapbook by Michael Kimball, err, Andy Devine.
¢ For Halloween I have a frog in my throat. For that matter, I've always had a frog in my throat.
¢ Only 3 more days until we leave for East Africa!
¢ I got some words out of Mike Topp by giving him some pictures: Sled Hill Voices.
¢ Finally finished The Exquisite by Laird Hunt. He captures a noirey-East Village that is rapidly becoming endangered. I also watched The Warriors last night. The first time I saw that movie in jr. high school in Mexico, it made me terrified of New York. Now I file it under comedy.
¢ I wish James Lipton was my father.
¢ It's October 22 and I'm still wearing shorts!
¢ FOALS! Video and stills from their trip to NYC.
¢ In my dream last night I met some "funnel-web rabbits"... docile rabbits that lived in the bottom of cone-shaped pits. I also met these ostriches who travelled by coiling themselves into tight balls and rolling, and when they unraveled they weren't ostriches, but storks.
¢ Been doing some bookish networking. Fortunately it kind of ties into what I do for gainful employment so it's not too much of a waste of time. So now in addition to 3 myspace pages, a facebook page, youtube, Heavy, Burly and countless others, I have a Shelfari and a Goodreads pages. It seems Goodreads is the better of the two, although its a bit buggy and I'm not sure who I am. Someone needs to make a a super-amalgamater that combines all your social networking profiles so you don't have to keep doing it over, especially when it comes to the bookshelves.
¢ I have some work in the new LIT no. 13, along with other Sleepingfishers Rob Walsh, Jackson Taylor, Adam Golaski and Terese Svoboda.
¢ In anticipiation of our trip to East Africa (in less than 3 weeks!) got a new camcorder. I was messing around with it and iMovie and YouTube now so I wouldn't be scrambling to figure it out on the plane. If you're curious as to what the Calamari Press headquarters look like and want to glimpse into a day in the life, walking to work, meeting Jess after work, here's a rather random video, not even worth embedding.
¢ Reading The Meat and Spirit Plan by Selah Saterstom was like receiving an I.V. drip of bong water, pig placenta, T-bone steak, Anthrax (the band), bile, mayonnaise, mop water, ice, sex enzymes, unsalted crackers, pancreatic discharge, valium, Jack Daniels and Jell-O made from the flesh beneath toenails, but with the letters of the alphabet soup I.V. drip all beautifully scrambled and missing the letters E, N and S, and administered tenderly. Now kindly undo these straps!
¢ [After seeing Control] I was Ian Curtis living with hippies down in Mexico. This one hippie chick kept crying out, "police roll." We ignored her, but one time Ian/I looked up and the distant ridgeline was crawling with these tribal warriors with spears and elaborate headresses. They snaked down the mountain and next thing we knew they were upon us, scaling the walls into our compound. Ian become detached from me and realized that the tribal warriors were in his head and willed them away.
¢ Saw Control, which was an interesting movie about Ian Curtis from the point of view of his wife. Who's to say what Ian Curtis was really thinking towards the end. And in retrospect, it's twisted to think that she would even write a book about it.
¢ I got my download for In Rainbows. Everything in it's right place.
¢ Just cooked up some "Barbecued Babelfish," or monkfish done in the Babel style: First we marinated monkfish and green onions (an encore of this), only this time we marinated first in Japanese ponzu sauce, Moroccan preserved lemons and chili powder we brought back from Morocco. We served it with rice, fesh pico de gallo and a salad with nuts and gorgonzola.
¢ Ode to John Olson, on the occasion of doing the cover for his next book: Backscatter.
¢ I eat lunch at least twice a week at this dive of a Mexican restaraunt called La Poblanita on 38th street near 8th avenue. I would provide a link, but I can't find it on the web. Don't let the looks of it scare you away. They have the best and most authentic Mexican food in the city.
¢ I had coffee today with "Shanghai Sheba".
¢ I'm torn between my hatred of the Yankees and the stupidity of Cleveland's logo.
¢ We are going to Africa in exactly one month!
¢ Seems to be a slurry of Calamari-related interviews and reviews in the past day or two... review of Part of the World in Rain Taxi, review of Vaast Bin on Anglophile and also an interview with me, a radio interview/reading with Miranda Mellis on The Lit Show, a review of The Night I Dropped Shakeseare on the Cat in Sentence 5, and an interview with brother Markus on MinimalBooks.
¢ Do you ever feel like you're just treading to stay afloat in a turbulent sea of information?
¢ I haven't even heard the new Radiohead, In Rainbows, but their custom of commerce alone made be buy it. For more than a penny.
¢ Ah, the joys of being a Mets fan. Fall is suddenly here. I cleaned out the little grill we have on the roof and put it away.
¢ Some interesting goings on this week in NYC: Tomorrow night (9/26) is the opening reception for the AIGA 50 Books/50 Covers Exhibition. Thursday night (9/27) at Issue Project Room: Daniel Borzutzky, Shelley Jackson and Deb Olin Unferth. And Friday (9/28) is the opening of the NY Art Book Fair.
¢ Finally finished Ben Okri's The Famished Road. Okri reconfirms for me (someone who has not yet been to Sub-Saharan Africa) what Amos Tutuola had already established in my mind: There is another layer to the African collective unconscious that is more profound than non-Africans can fathom. Not only can we all be genetically linked back to Africa, but memetically the original well of all our dreams lies in Africa. Our growing detachment from this source is our own severance. If their wells run dry, the whole world starves.
¢ We hiked up Slide Mountain yesterday, evidently the highest "mountain" in the Catskills.
¢ Some kind words from The Written Nerd who I met at the Brookly Book Festival. Off upstate early in the morning.
¢ "You are inside the work for so long and it's entirely yours for that time and then it finally comes out and it has nothing to do with you anymore. The distance you feel from the work is striking." -brother Lopez, from an interview in Word Riot. Oh, and speaking of brother Lopez, here's a new Blindster story he has in NOÖ.
¢ Some images inspired by Michael Boyko's The Hour Sets.
¢ We (the "Heavy Ballers") came from behind to win our first game in the NY Urban Professional Basketball League. Woot!
¢ I'll be at the Brooklyn Book Festival tomorrow mongering fish.
¢ Michael Peters' Vaast Bin is now available.
¢ I have a piece in the new LIT, though I haven't seen the issue yet, and I was an idiot and missed the launch party when they were giving them out.
¢ I have an en extra HP 15 ink cartridge from my printer that crapped out. First person to email me gets it free.
¢ Oh, and my handle on Burly Sports is PREE, after Prefontaine.
¢ Burly Sports: this is what I have been working on most of the summer (at my day job).
¢ In the beginning was the word and the word was mud.
¢ Even though Calamari squirt ink, not toner, I got a new color laserjet printer yesterday, and have since printed out over 50 chapbbooks, all with the set of cartridges that came with the printer. With an inkjet I probably would've gone through 3 or 4 cartridges and would not have been able to print that many in one day.
¢ " ...we are always imagining unpredictable deviations from the straight line, mindful of the freedom of atoms and animals." --Miranda Mellis, from her latest Blue Dog.
¢ No field report from New Mexico this time. I only took this one picture (near Santa Rosa).
¢ Posting from Albuquerque. Eating posole every day and watching thunderstorms. Dug some holes with a post-hole auger. Ran a marathon. Heard coyotes, saw dead rattlesnakes and buffalos getting frisky while I was running.
¢ Off to New Mexico to run a marathon and hang under a big sky.
¢ Scored some tickets to Revenge of the Book Eaters (thanks Jack!). Demetri Martin was funny and Feist and Jim James have great voices, but Grizzly Bear stole the show. Speaking of works of art as genes or genomes (see below), Grizzly Bear did this song Marla, that was written by the singer Ed Droste's grandmother, a "failed singer" in the 40s. It was a beautiful song, especially to think that it might have died, had he not revived it. Oh, and it was all to benefit 826NYC.
¢ Read Graphs, Maps, Trees: Abstract Models for a Literary History by Franco Moretti. I was intrigued by the idea of it: a quantitiave study of the literary output of the world as a whole. He analyzes the evolution and morphology of the novel through historical times, or at least he sets out to. While the book generated a lot of thought and had some interesting digressions, I think it bit off more than it could chew, or just went on too many random tagents. Still, interesting to think of novels as genomes, that expresses certain traits in some generations, that are somewhat dependent on past novels as a foundation, yet also necessitate mutation (new radically inventive ideas) to continue to survive.
¢ Buyer Beware: As someone who does a LOT of printing and is disgusted by the inflated price of ink, I was interested in the new Kodak Easyshare printers that supposedly saved you 50% on ink. I wasn't deterred by the fact that you couldn't find the printers or ink in any retail stores in NYC, and ordered one online. The result? I'm not sure as the printer never worked! I got a fatal error right out of the box. I dealt with incompetent customer service that sent me a replacement printer head, to no avail, they couldn't fix it. They offered to send me a "refurbished" replacement, and then hassled me about a refund when I asked for one. Bottom line from my experience, nice idea in theory, but they need reliable printer technology and customer service to back them up.
¢ The new Sentence 5 is out, with contents too awesome and vast to summarize in one sentence.
¢ "I was directed to the future, but it is hard for me to part with experience. Before I reached the subway entrance, I turned for a last look. He stood in front of the car, glancing up and down the street. There wasn't a soul in his sight. Not even me. Then he peed. He did not pee like a boy who expects to span a continent, but like a man--in a puddle." --Gracy Paley
¢ We saw Inland Empire the other night. I'm still not sure what to think. It was like watching a 0-0 soccer game that was beautifully played. There were some amazing shots, but the goals are so lofty that nothing went in the net. I'd say a third of the movie was closeups of Laura Dern looking bewildered.
¢ I started reading the The Famished Road by Ben Okri and am hooked.
¢ My knee's been kind of gimpy, so I've only managed to hobble like 16 miles this week before today. But today I had to do my last long run before the marathon. The first 6 miles my knee felt like a rusty hinge. The second 6 miles I was running really fast because it felt better, and I just wanted to get it overwith faster. The third lap I was running with some Irish guy so that helped. The last four miles i was hating life because I ran too fast out of the gate. My total time for the 22 mile run was just under 3 hours. My knee doesn't hurt anymore.
¢ Anglerfish have been on mind lately. There's one in the novel (Our Mother is a Fish) I'm working on. The anglerfish is not my mother, but my brother. To get in the spirit, we ate monkfish (a type of anglerfish). We grilled it with lemon, ponzu, sesame oil and spices, along with some shitakes, onions and aspargus. Here's how it came out.
¢ Ever wonder what makes The Edge's guitar so unique? The answer is e.
¢ Went to see the Richard Serra exhibit at the MOMA, but the line was around the block. Is it just me, or does everything seem like a ride at Disneyland these days? I saw an exhibit of his like 10 or 15 years ago, but it would have been nice to "see" some of his newer work as pictures don't do them justice. But not worth fighting the crowds.
¢ Went for a 21 mile run. What a difference it makes when it's like 50 degrees out and not 80. There was a bunch of annoying roadrunners running in packs taking up the whole road, so half the time I was trying to find convoluted ways to avoid them. I don't understand why people feel a need to cluster together when running. Actually, that seems to be true in general of people. You can be in an empty subway car or restaurant and people will sit right next to you.
¢ To all ye BK endorsers, Simpsonize this, my pitbull!
¢ For those that endured my bitching about my living situation last year (expressing itself in weird ways), I finally had my day in court with the slumlord. The first time I have ever been in any sort of courtroom, besides jury duty. During these strange ritualistic proceedings, with 50 other cases going on simultaenously, I amused myself by thinking how not that far along from chimpanzees we are, or perhaps even behind. The only thing on the far wall of the courtoom were huge words, "In God We Trust." What the fuck is that all about?
¢ The new Time Out New York has an article on small presses in NY, including Calamari Press.
¢ Ric Royer sent me this intriguing little book & CD of annotated artifcats that sees doubles in all their glory: There Was One & It Was Two.
¢ "Literature is fiction not because it somehow refuses to acknowledge "reality", but because it is not a priori certain that language functions according to principles which are those, or which are like those, of the phenomenal world. It is therefore not a priori certain that literature is a reliable source of information about anything but its own language." -Paul De Man
¢ Ran around the park 3 times in 2:32. Ate 1/2 a cantaloupe filled with blueberries. Now I'm working on a novel. I'm at page 60 of rewrites, out of 180. I wrote the first draft 10 years ago. It's called Our Mother the Fish.
¢ My better half is still in Africa. Here's some pictures she posted from Ghana.
¢ I long for the days of Meat Puppets II before it became redefined as Meatpuppets 2.0. The funny thing is that the word was first newsworthy in the 2.0 sense in this article in the Washington Post about this Ruckus scam on Facebook, and Mike Bebel, who owns and heads Ruckus, used to be my boss at Napster.
¢ Miranda Mellis, er Flower, is writing a new serial novel she is putting online called Every Day She Makes a New Blue Dog. The world is ripe and ready for more blue dogs.
¢ In addition to a few myspace pages, now I have a facebook page. I swear, it's only R&D for my job! I started a group if you're on facebook and care to join, Book Objects, the Dying Art form. The most recent question I posed was, is a book a book if a tree never falls?
¢ When the moon is full, I shave my head. 28-day stubble is all I can stand these days.
¢ Just got back from an 18 mile run, 3 laps around Central Park. It looked like it might rain on the 1st lap (49 mins). Up at the top of the park, a bunch of Senegalese were gathering, with their colorful robes and radiant black skin, appropriate since Jess arrived in Dakar this morning. Also saw a peregrine falcon. On the 2nd lap (51 mins) I wasn't thinking about much of anything. At the top of the park there were even more West Africans, singing and drumming, like they were staging for a parade or a protest (can't find anything in the news about it). By the 3rd lap (54 mins) I had to keep telling my body to shut up. I oscillated between a false euphoria and denial. At the top of cat hill, I saw this transexual named Tatiana that used to sit in on my quantum physics classes in Tucson (anyone at U of A in the early 90s would know who he/she was). When I got to the top of the park the Senegalese were gone, so they must have gone off to their parade or protest. As Gump would say, "I'm tired now."
¢ Finished most of the stories in The Apolcalypse Reader, quite a fine collection that Justin Taylor put together. Looks like there's a reading from it on July 29th in Portland with Brian Evenson, Lucy Corin and Justin Taylor if you are in the area.
¢ Andrew Richmond has put up a series of his fictions on his KnifePower site.
¢ I sent Michael Peters' Vaast B1n to the printers. Here's some excerpts, a trailer and a peak at the cover to tie you over.
¢ My better half flew off to Ghana last night. I'm in the doghouse for almost three weeks.
¢ Just ran 16 miles, starting at Strawberry Fields, across the park, past the MOMA east all the way to Carl Schurz park where we used to live and run when we first moved to NYC, down along the East River until you are forced to cut back in along First avenue past the UN, cutting back over to the East River and down, near where we lived and ran in the East Village, then further down near where we lived and ran in the LES, under all three bridges, past the now closed down Fulton Fish Market (where I took this picture that was on the first Sleepingfish) to Battery Park, blew a kiss to lady liberty then headed up the west side, past where I worked at pressplay, where I saw the towers fall from, to Riverside park at 74th street.
¢ This guy got what he deserved! Ha Ha. Anyone that drives an SUV, especially a Hummer, should get this treatment.
¢ I also recently received the new Cranky, which has an interesting postcard interview with Michael Martone.
¢ Received a copy of Carousel 21 from some nice folks in the great white north. Lots of interesting "hybrid media" to look-read.
¢ The best things in life are free, yet why is it that people feel a need to buy it at such an expense?
¢ Finished The Age of Sinatra, the sequel to David Ohle's Motorman, which I reviewed here. Mondenke returns from The Forgetting even more disenfranchised than ever, with bountiful neut gland eating, oozing flocculus (never has sex with alien life forms been so appealing) and other guilty pleasures umbrellaed under an absurdly random judicial system. And now I'm finding out there's yet another new one from Soft Skull, Pisstown Chaos. Holy Ohle!
¢ Ran from our apartment on 74th street along the Hudson down to the southern tip of Manhattan and back, around 14 miles in 1:47 (faster on the way back). Then we went to Brighton Beach. Read the first half of the The Age of Sinatra by David Ohle.
¢ Ran Fartleks this morning, only because I like the word and to break up the monotony of long runs and to push my natural pace. My version included 6 half-mile sprints between 2:55 and 3:10 each (on uneven terrain with hills), inspersed with walking and jogging. I'd like to get these down to 2:30 each.
¢ Pictures and video medleys from Femi Kuti's show last night in Central Park.
¢ "In a world rife with unsolicited messages, typography must often draw attention to itself before it will be read. Yet in order to be read, it must relinquish the attention it has drawn." --Robert Bringhurst, from The Elements of Typographic Style
¢ Just saw Design for the Other 90% at the Cooper-Hewitt. I liked the idea of the exhibit better than the presentation, maybe because it was weird to see these objects in a museum setting with "don't touch," signs as opposed to in use in the field. You can probably gleen more from their website, in particular the Q-Drum is brilliant and useful, as is the Pot-in-Pot Cooler.
¢ In anticipation for publishing his next one, Tortoise, I read This Guy by James Lewlling. Ran 12 miles.
¢ Christian Tebordo has a new book, Better Ways of Being Dead, that looks interesting.
¢ If you're in need of a global reality check, queue up Darwin's Nightmare by French filmaker Hubert Sauper. And be sure to watch the extra movie on the DVD about the Congo in 1997, Kisangani Diary. But not if you plan on getting a good night's sleep.
¢ Noon 2007 has some fine new work by the likes Kim Chinquee, Christine Schutt, Deb Olin Unferth and Gary Lutz, as well as two very interesting dissective essays on Lutz translated from French. Deb Olin Unferth and Gary Lutz are also reading this evening at Magnetic Field. I myself am too tired to go--having just run 12 miles I plan to sit on my ass the rest of the day. My goal in running this marathon is not a time, so much as a time concept, which is to do a negative split (where the second half is faster than the first). In preparation, I just ran the first lap (6 miles) of central park in 48 minutes, and the second lap in 46 minutes. If I could keep that up for twice as long I'd be happy.
¢ Some images from Poste Restante are in The Tiny. I ran 6 muggy miles in 47 minutes.
¢ Blaise Aguera y Arcas gives new meaning to photosynthesis.
¢ Here's some pics and video footage of yesterday's Mermaid Parade in Coney Island.
¢ I shaved my head and ran 10 miles in 82 minutes. Yesterday a pigeon pooped on my right hand.
¢ mIEKAL aND and his son Zon in the NY Times!
¢ I've listened to Roscoe by Midlake about 50 times in the past 24 hours. It won't let go of me.
¢ Bloomberg declaring himself independent is the most promising political news I've heard in the past decade. Let's hope he makes a run for it. Speaking of running, I ran 6 miles in 46:13, my first time running with a watch in a while. I suspect I run faster without one, but one can never know. It's like a quantum physics conundrum. Or maybe it's more like fishing without a measuring tape or scale--the fish always seem bigger.
¢ I put some of my old songs up on MySpace.
¢ Rick Moody, Brian Evenson, Gary Lutz, Deb Olin Unferth and Justin Taylor will all be reading at The Strand on Thursday June 21 at 7 PM.
¢ I got to the end of The Road. An appropriate read for the fatherless like me on father's day.
¢ My personal philosophy about Starbucks is that I output more liquid there than I input, and so far by my count I think I'm liters ahead. But how does this philosophy apply to Sonic Youth putting out a record on the Starbucks label? Can you undo listening to music? Is there any hope? This, as I read 80 more pages of a book from Oprah's book club.
¢ I read the first 73 pages of The Road. I ran 8 miles.
¢ "The Revisionist seems not only to be an assemblage of ruin, but an assemblage of assemblages..." from a review by Blake Butler in Bookslut.
¢ Since I didn't get in the New York Marathon, I entered the New Mexico Marathon on Sept. 2. That gives me 12 weeks to train, so basically I need to do a long run once a week that gets 2 miles longer each week, starting with a base of 6 which is what I normally do. I mapped it out, and my total mileage over these 12 weeks will be 420 miles. This morning I ran 4 miles, though I don't know at what pace, I don't wear a watch. I also bike 4 miles a day to and from work. I've got some ground to cover this summer.
¢ We live in a world where information is no longer peer-reviewed or necessarily based on truth. Whether old dogs like Britannica like it or not, the most interesting and engaging memes will survive, regardless of validity. The double irony is that they are using a blog forum to bash blogs and "web 2.0" (I mean, isn't that term passé already?), and everyone, including me, that is responding to it are contributing to the value of that post by lashing back and linking to it. Bottom line: truth is boring.
¢ Somebody is selling a few of my old chapbooks for $80+ on Amazon. Pity the fool that buys them there when they can just buy them from me or Powell's for like $5 or $6. I noticed because I was checking out the "search inside" feature that is now available for most of the Calamari Press books.
¢ I didn't make the NYC Marathon lottery. Oh well, guess I can always just make up my own one man marathon. Far less hassle and far cheaper.
¢ Harp & Altar looks to be a promising newish literary online magazine, now on its second issue with a great cover, I think by Josh Dorman.
¢ Jess got back from Kenya yesterday. Here's some pics that she took while she was there.
¢ I did this wordless interview with Deron Bauman. Check it out.
¢ Tonight is Gary Lutz, Norman Lock and Eugene Marten at the Issue Project Room. An event not to be missed! It's the last event in the old oil silo before they move to a new space.
¢ It's here! Good, Brother: the long lost movie based on the short story by Peter Markus.
¢ I've been uploading book data and cover art to Amazon, and the covers for Poste Restante and Sleepingfish 0.9375 keep getting rejected. I guess the expectation is that a book cover should have the title explicitly on it? That's silly.
¢ I felt like inverting the site today.
¢ Sometimes I wonder how many people, in their web searches, come across this site intentionally, or by accident, and what gives me greater satisfaction. Last month, 53 people found this site looking for "ass," (in particular, 7 for "Brazilian ass"), 45 were searching for "white sand," 13 for "conch piercing," 9 were looking for the "Mayan underworld," 7 were looking for "Objects in mirror closer than they appear," 6 for "train toilet," 4 for "dinosaurs," (1 in particular for "purple dinosaur mascot rental"), 4 for "scary ostrich," (1 in particular for "zombie ostrich"), 4 were looking for the "tombstone of Marie Curie," 3 for "pantyhose cocoon," 2 for a "camel leather smell," another 2 for "turkey nipples" and 1 lost soul was searching for a " girl behind chicken wire coughing up ghosts."
¢ Oh, and speaking of food preparation and delivery, Gary Lutz will be in The Kitchen tonight.
¢ We were an itchy finger click away from squandering all of our frequent flyer miles and then some on plane tickets to London to see FOALS in August, we think they are that good. Then our senses got the better of us, I guess. In the meantime, here's some more tracks and videos to check out while we wait for them to put out an album or come play here. Just when you thought there was no hope for humanity...
¢ My first real go at Mexipanese food.
¢ Review of the last issue of Sleepingfish in NewPages.
¢ duncan barlow put some pics up on his blog of the Sleepingfish launch party in Denver that he also organized. Thanks duncan!
¢ I've got some work in the new Versal, a fine journal out of the Netherlands.
¢ The other half of the Sleepingfish launch party is this Saturday May 26, if you happen to be in the neighborhood of Denver where there seems to be a disproportionate number of good writers. The likes of Joshua Marie Wilkinson, Noah Eli Gordon, Duncan Barlow, J'Lyn Chapman, Sara Veglahn and Erik Anderson will be delivering their words. It's at some antique furniture boutique called Fancy Tiger. I only wish I could be there.
¢ Movie of the slideshow that never happened at last night's Sleepingfish launch party.
¢ In an interview in Seed, David Byrne and Daniel Levitin give new meaning to "monkey see, monkey do."
¢ I started my new job yesterday. The best part is that not only can we open the windows, which is rare enough in midtown Manhattan, but you can crawl out the window on to the ledge, 11 stories up, which for all intents and purposes is a porch that wraps around the office.
¢ Some upcoming readings not to miss (besides the Sleepingfish launch on May 20, of course): Deb Olin Unferth, Nick Antosca and Tao Lin on May 16th, though Deb neglected to mention where--somewhere in the nyc area [-- Bluestockings]! Not to worry because she'll read again on May 18th with some others and even some music, at the Cakeshop. Then catch this, Gary Lutz, Norman Lock, and Eugene Marten at a performance space in a former fuel silo on the banks of the Gowanus canal in Brooklyn, called Issue Project Room. Down the road they got the likes of Joe Wenderoth, Amy Hempel, Shelley Jackson, and Daniel Borzutzky passing through their doors, and they also put on music and video performances.
¢ As an excercise in posting and sharing videos on Heavy.com, where I start working in a few hours, I uploaded some footage of Blonde Redhead playing live at Webster Hall last night.
¢ There's a fascinating piece on the Codex Seraphinianus by Justin Taylor in the new Believer, complete with half a dozen images from the book. I gots to get me a copy.
¢ Based on The Heinrich Maneuver, the new Interpol sounds promising. Though no matter what they call it, I'm sure everyone else will refer to it as 'How are things on the west coast?"
I recently read Shining Man, Norman Lock's radio play based on the true events of a man that discovered Cesium 137 in an empty lot in Brazil, unbeknownst to its true nature. It's half of his beautifully produced Two Plays for Radio from Ravenna Press.
I had a few hours to kill away from home the other day, so I stopped at St. Marks to pick up Yannick Murphy's new book, Here They Come. The time went by before I knew it and I was wishing I had more to finish it.
¢ Since there's no Brother Derek this year, how about Street Sense? Or Street 5 Cense, since it will also be Cinco De Mayo, and we'll be having mint margaritas in lieu of mint juleps.
¢ Ran around the park for the first time. Still a bit creaky from the epic move, so only did the innner loop. From 2000 to 2004, I orbited Central Park at least once a week, at times up to four times in one day (4x6 = 24 miles!). The best thing about running around the park is the reservoir. Not necessarily running along it, but the thought of it, as you circle it like an electron in a circuit, generating a magnetic current that is absorbed, along with all the other runner's currents, by the infinite central reservoir.
¢ Managed to launch the new Sleepingfish amidst moving and still without internet service (held my computer out the window in a thunder storm to post this).
¢ First post from our new pad. Moved yesterday from the Lower East to the Upper West Side, 5-floor walkup to 5-floor walkup. You just can't get that kind of workout at a gym.
¢ The new Tarpaulin Sky, guest-edited by Rebecca Brown, is up and it rocks. It contains ekphrastic texts by the likes of Lucy Corin, Brian Evenson, Joanna Howard, Laird Hunt, Selah Saterstrom and John Yau in response to images by Nancy Kiefer.
¢ I have some new work in Quarter After Eight 13, alongside some other innovative prose. I particularly liked the works by Bonnie Emerick, Mary Domenico, Angel Crespo (translated by Steven J. Stewart) and Girija Tropp.
¢ We got a new apartment today (not really where the green arrow is, but more like the dark rooftop near the W in W 74).
¢ I got a new job today (speaking of meme propagation).
¢ Our media has made mass murder a very effective form of meme expression.
¢ Goat Trees: This was the cover I wanted for the next Sleepingfish but couldn't get the damn goats to cooperate. No matter, cuz I got something even better... In the meantime, I'd check out this book by David Rozgonyi just based on the cover.
¢ Besides quoting an epigraph from one of the pieces in Sleepingfish 0.875 that Sheyene Foster Heller used to parachute into her decidely "negative" 2+ page bash in Literary Magazine Review, she didn't specifically name, quote or describe a single author or work that was in the issue, though she specifically complained that, "None of the issues has an editor's note or anything else to introduce or preface the content, which as a reader, I find more than a little bothersome," and she quoted from the website's submission guidelines six times. Sorry to all those that were actually in the issue.
¢ After walking around pretty much all of Boston and Cambridge, had dinner at Carmen in the North End, right next to Paul Revere's House.
¢ Had steamers at the oldest restaraunt in America.
¢ I'm writing this from the cafeteria at the Harvard School of Public Health. Don't ask why.
¢ To quote Vonnegut, " ... finally stopped laughing at his own agony and that of those around him. He denounced life on this planet as a crock. He died."
¢ I never thought of myself as "in style," but Style.com picked up one of my photos.
¢ The company that currently employs me, Bertelsmann, acquired Bookspan today. So things like Book Of The Month Club are some of the properties I could be working on... ha, ha, like that means anything.
¢ Shirtless Danzig showing off his, uh, library... at least he's promoting reading.
¢ Our friend Andrew who works with Jess made the NY Times today for his work in global climate change.
¢ Sometimes computers try to be too smart and I'm having to redo all the intentionally dumb things I've done. Like the background color for this page that Dreamweaver changed without asking, telling me it was a mistake. Who's bright idea was it to protect users from themselves?
¢ I'm a big fan of bitmap-based paint tools, and evidently such a thing existed on Macs, but based on Bill Atkinson's design philosophy, it sounds like it would mold or "help" you mold what you are creating, which defeats the purpose.
¢ I'd say "once you go Mac, there's no going back..." but I actually started my life on a Mac and switched to PC and today, after some ten torturous years, swtiched back. Not only did I get a MacBook today but I'm writing this with Dreamweaver. Dare I admit I was ever using FrontPage? The horror!
¢ On Michael Jacobson's The Giant's Fence: I usually find myself bored with most visual poetry going on these days, but I can always rely on Geog Huth to finger the occasional bomb that comes along. Can't wait to get my grubby hands on a copy of this Giant's Fence. Here's an excerpt:
˘ There's some pieces from The Night I Dropped Shakespeare on the Cat and Poste Restante online in Little, an online magazine that Michael Peters recently took the reins of. I also forgot to mention some textual pieces I recently had in Milk Magazine.
˘ Also in this month's Believer is a bipolar artic-le by Scott & James Browning on the poles, though in their review of Antarctic literature they neglected to mention Belden's Land of the Snow Men. The nerve.
I'm not sure I liked Ander Monson's Neck Deep as much as Other Electricities (which I reviewed here), still, more signature Monson with its explorative meditations in form, this time around leaning more towards personal essay (which I'm admittedly not a fan of, unless it's self-deprecating).
˘ There's a review of my book in The Believer, thanks to Ross Simonini.
˘ Bateau: A new literary vessel launched by James Grinwis.
˘ Go Hoyas!
˘ 49 days left in NYC. Not sure where we're going then, but that's a different story.
˘ Watching the first of this 11-part series: Planet Earth. Awesome. 10 more to go.
Read and recommended: silver standard by justin sirois (NewLights Press). The most remarkable about the book is the book itself (the design): an inverted stapled grid on the cover flap that sticks to the book by way of magnetic strips, and diagrammatic fold out centerfolds, all beautifully designed by Aaron Cohick.
I've been enjoying the images from the Ruby Mag book, a print collection from the online art magazine curated by Irana Douer out of Argentina. Her art will also grace the cover of the next Sleepingfish.
˘ I missed out on the 6th iteration of DIAGRAM so messed up my continuity, but I have some work in the new issue 7.1.
˘ Thanks to Christopher Fritton for turning me on to this new press Hotel St. George Press... if that's what indeed it is, a press, maybe it is a ghostly incarnation of the old hotel, though it does look like they have print books, embedded in a veritable labyrinth of goodies. You can check out any time like, but you can never leave.
˘ The real graffiti problem and how to deal with it.
˘ FOALS: I suggest you put on a diaper before listening to this band. I about pooped my pants.
˘ Two notes I found at my place of employment.
˘ The Code is not the Text (unless it is the Text) by John Cayley (a literal artist working in textual media)
˘ Lose yourself in Josh Dorman's fractal landscapes.
˘ A review of The Revisionist is up on Verse, thanks to Caitlin Brown.
˘ On the way to AWP a man told us we could "shag in the sand" in the underground of Atlanta. On the way back we drove to the moon eclipsing over the Carolinas. That's probably all I'll have time to say about AWP--Cooper Renner who was at the at table next to ours was better at playing paparazzi on Clusterflock.
What started as a review of Danielle Dutton's Attempts at a Life, ends up being more of a review of my current living situation. But really, I liked the book.
The World Come of Age: I was hoping to find time to give this movie by Deron Bauman the review it deserves, but I'm afraid I might not find the time anytime soon. In any event, I suggest you check it out if you get the chance, it's about real people facing real issues in real America, if anything watch it for the language and the two head-butting bulls.
˘ In an addendum to the Economy of Words, here's some logic somebody needs to explain to me: This guy Corey Mesler runs a supposedly independent and literary bookstore that after querying in the past is not interested in carrying Calamari Press books, but this morning I get a query from him wanting me to publish a book of his. Not that I believe in tit for tat, but why would you want your book published by a press whose books you don't want to sell? Something's gotta give.
˘ "The fishermen had been fishing for Patagonian toothfish in deep Antarctic waters when the colossal squid - which was eating a toothfish - was caught."
˘ The harsh reality of the economy of words.
˘ February elimae is up, chock full of fine work.
˘ For anyone that remembers the first two issues of Sleepingfish, I had high hopes of taking a picture of a certain wall on Ludlow street as it evolved over time. It's not like I gave up on it, but it was painted over completely, a bland brown color. Now it appears it is getting some more calculated graffiti as BlueJake has pointed out. Off to see for myself.
˘ All sorts of stuff coming out of the north woods up there from Tarpaulin Sky Press: Max Winter’s The Pictures, and Sandy Florian’s 32 Pedals and 47 Stops. I can vouch for the latter having read it in manuscript form. There's a release party for Winter's book on Feb 21, but see, it's the same night as the Lopez/Evenson reading at the New School, and I think Calamari trumps Tsky in that arm-twisting match.
I've been self-diagnosing myself nightly with Dennis DiClaudio's The Hypochondriacs Pocket Guide to Horrible Diseases You Probably Already Have. And to think I shared an office with him at Comedy Central for a few months, was it contagious?
˘ An interesting repurposing of Shakespeare by Mary Bennett.
˘ I posted an interview with Gary Lutz, the first of what I hope will be a series in this vein.
˘ I was looking to refresh the 5˘ logo, and googled "nickel" and this is what I was served. The caption reads "If you suffer from this type of allergy you should avoid contact with nickel-containing metals."
Received a copy of the most recent Ninth Letter, some great writings by the likes of Paige Ackerson-Kiely, Roy Kesey and Michael Martone with innovative art and design stitching it all together in an over-sized glossy format.
Finally finished Brian Evenson's The Open Curtain, savoring every last drop. Felt like I was there, a witness.
˘ I posted the final installment from our Morocco trip, along the coast, though I was too lazy to put down many words.
˘ Amy King flickr'ed us at Peter Markus' reading the other night. Also some shots there of PF Potvin's recent reading that I missed because it was the same night as Norman Lock.
˘ I dreamt last night that I was inspecting an old tube amp and discovered that the vacuum tubes had been extracted, much as grave robbers loot a grave. I suspect it has something to do with reading Michael Peter's Vaast Bin manuscript (of which this is an excerpt).
˘ I dreamt last night of a woman that married banana bread. Not a slice or a loaf of it, but the pan it was cooked in.
˘ I used an electric toothbrush for the first time a few days ago. I don't feel any different yet.
˘ Third installment from Morocco: Rocking the Kasbahs and Girdling Goat Trees.
˘ I don't at all feel qualified to read or review poetry, and have had little time to, but Cooper Renner, ur, I mean Esteban, has sent me this elegantly produced book of his poetry, Mosefolket, which looks enticing. Norman Lock has reviewed it on Clusterflock.
˘ "And there is mother of pearl, and the shine, the lustrous shine of lips, the edge where her warm mouth joins her lip, a boundary beckons and the gulf beyond: obscure interior. The allure of lipstick. The gleam of cosmetic akin to cosmos." - Bin Ramke from the current Tarpaulin Sky.
˘ From Ted Pelton's review of Olson in DR7. "I think most all readers of this review would agree that the workaday world of Bush-era American life is far too sense-driven, and that unquestioned straight-ahead business-as-usual remains the order of the day even as the assumptions of its power-mad enactments on the world stage are timidly questioned." Pelton's making sense of Olson's nonsense doesn't make sense to me even in a nonsensical way. Stay tuned for Olson's rebuttal...
˘ The Revisionist by Miranda Mellis is now available.
˘ The new Double Room 7, edited by Peter Conners, has work by Peter Markus, John Olson and Robert Lopez.
˘ 5˘ense lives on it's own server now! No more piggy-backing on Sleepingfish. And a facelift too!
˘ G.C. Waldrep reviews John Olson in the new Octopus 8, albeit it's somewhat dated... his "latest" is from last year! Now that they've made it to #8, hopefully the fellow Molluscas will venture into feline territory.
˘ Second Moroccan field report posted with pics (and even a video clip) of Barbary Apes, the Middle Atlas and belly dancing Berbers.
˘ Hardcore Hyena alpha she-males: "Imagine giving birth through a penis"
˘ First installment of our Moroccan field report posted. Others to follow as I find time.
˘ Fingering to Inhabit Monkey House made work of the day on Dan Wickett's Emerging Writer's Network.
˘ From today's NY Times: "Mysterious odors come and go in the New York City area, sometimes never identified."
(c) 2008 Derek White / Sleepingfish / Calamari Press