Saturday, May 29, 2010

Hear, hear!

"WHAT the FUCK is the big deal with PRIVACY on Facebook? Facebook is not a private world, it's very much not. If you want to BITCH about privacy why not go to city hall and complain about all the fucking video cameras. You can't buy a fucking battery for your radio or have sex in the park without a fucking camera on you. I'm irritated with the DON'T LOOK AT ME, I'M ON THE INTERNET!"


, originally uploaded by majawalk.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

, originally uploaded by majawalk.

Sunglasses dude is looking right at me. Is he a fruit stand bouncer? No matter how sneaky I think I am, people always end up spotting the camera. Often I don't notice until I get home and upload the pictures and see, whoa, dude's looking at me! Kind of freaks me out, but it's amusing.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

, originally uploaded by majawalk.

So the other day I was ambling down along the Hudson west of the Village and in amongst all the new crap going up around there I saw this ancient ghost of a hotel at the corner of Barrow and West. So I took a couple pictures. There was no name on it that I could see, so later at home I googled the cross streets and learned that what I had accidentally discovered was the Keller Hotel, built in 1898, later home to the Keller Bar, reputed to be the city's first leather bar and the birthplace of disco. That's right people. I discovered the birthplace of disco by accident. The Village People posed in front of it for the cover of their first album. It closed in the 90's, but it got landmark status a few years ago. I've read that plans are underway to convert it into apartments, but I didn't see any signs of construction. More info here. (A slightly outdated article.)

Saturday, May 22, 2010

A Sommer Browning marionette, manipulated by noted puppeteer Noah Eli Gordon.


, originally uploaded by majawalk.

I've been finding these off and on in my room ever since I moved in three years ago. (I also found them in my old apartment, I remember.) They're not bed bugs, right? Bed bugs look completely different. The only things I can think of that look sort of like this are ticks. It clearly has six legs, so it's an insect, not a spider. It's not a roach, it's not a beetle. It moves slowly. It has antennae. Its body is the size of a football. Just kidding. Its body is the size of a pinhead.

WHAT IS IT.......

Side view.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Liberal homophobia

From Glenn Greenwald at Salon:

Perhaps it's naïveté, but I've been amazed by the outraged objections of many Good Liberals to the mere discussion of Elena Kagan's sexual orientation. Without realizing it, they've completely internalized one of the most pernicious myths long used to demand that gay people remain in the closet: namely, that to reveal one's sexual orientation is to divulge one's "sex life."


Indeed, the very notion that it is "outrageous" or "despicable" to inquire into a public figure's sexual orientation -- adjectives I heard repeatedly applied to those raising questions about Kagan -- is completely inconsistent with the belief that sexual orientation is value-neutral. If being straight and gay are precise moral equivalents, then what possible harm can come from asking someone, especially one who seeks high political office: "are you gay?" If one really believes that they are equivalent, then that question would be no different than asking someone where they grew up, whether they are married, or how many children they have. That's what made the White House's response to the initial claims that Kagan was gay so revealing and infuriating: by angrily rejecting those claims as "false charges," they were -- as Alex Pareene put it -- "treating lesbian rumors like allegations of vampiric necrophilia."

, originally uploaded by majawalk.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Have you people heard of Kostas Anagnopoulos? His book is Moving Blanket. It just came out. (Ugly Duckling Presse.) That more book covers are not made to resemble denim is a tragedy of design. This cover is one of my favorite covers in quite some time. The poetry is the stacked-line punctuationless (mostly) kind of stuff I'm into right now. Some of it's that way. Some other poems are prose poems and are also good. But back to the design. The font is PMN Caecilia. I'm a fan of this font. I just learned its name. Also, they should, or could, sell t-shirts that look like the cover. I would buy such a t-shirt and wear it in a variety of settings.

, originally uploaded by majawalk.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Too cozy? You don't say...

"And a top official of the Interior Department agency that oversees offshore drilling is retiring a month earlier than planned.

Chris Oynes told his bosses after the Deepwater Horizon explosion that he would retire at the end of June, an administration official told CNN, but announced Monday that he would step down at the end of May instead.

Oynes has been associate director of the Minerals Management Service's Offshore Minerals Management Program since 2007. In the past, critics have accused MMS of being too cozy with the industries it regulates. Most infamously, a 2008 report from the Interior Department's inspector-general found MMS employees received improper gifts from energy industry representatives and engaged in illegal drug use and inappropriate sexual relations with them."

, originally uploaded by majawalk.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

This, what you're reading, this isn't an "art thing". That would require unfocusedness. For now I'm entirely too focused for art things. I just want to say things.

I'm focusing on [                         ].

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Poetry IRL

Went to see and hear Elisa Gabbert, Chris Tonelli, and Christopher Salerno read poems. It (the weather) was hot, and it (the reading) was too. This, and talking to Elisa, and to Leigh, these were things that were good for my mental health. Talking to people in person is just better than talking to them online, even when talking to people online is great. Good thing I live where I do, the place where everyone ends up eventually.

Reading is all about living vicariously through other people, fictional or non-fictional. I'd rather live through myself. Someone else can write about me, then other people can read it and live vicariously through me. That would be preferable. And movies/tv are preferable to reading because they make it easier to live vicariously, through sight and sound, not just words. But being "IRL" is preferable to movies. It's an interactive, participatory movie, the best kind.

On the way home, colored pencils, abandoned

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

We didn't start the fire / Just kidding we totally did

At my friend Mela's tonight, cookies were baked. But not before the oven exploded and killed us all.

Okay, that's a slight exaggeration. A basically accurate dramatized account can be found here. (The dialogue at the beginning is a phone conversation.)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Monday, May 10, 2010

Think I'll give up on this Karl Parker book. Couldn't find much interesting about it. At least I got a free tarot reading out of it. Lately reading poetry feels like trying to eat when you're sick. It doesn't taste like anything. But what else am I going to do. Boring job, boring social life, boring everything. If I had some other hobby I'd drop poetry in a second. Oh well.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

I like knowing things about people who don't know me

Which is why I'm glad it's so much easier nowadays to find information about people on Facebook. Everyone is complaining that it's becoming harder to keep information private, to which I say, great! I always hate it when I look someone up on Facebook or MySpace (admit it, you still sign in to MySpace two or three times a year just to see what's up), and am told that "this profile is private" or words to that effect. Dammit! I really wanted to see pictures of that girl from my German class, etc.

Wired magazine complains, "you might be a teenager and don’t get that college-admissions offices will use your e-mail address to find possibly embarrassing information about you."

Hey, you know what, if you don't want college-admissions offices to find embarrassing information about you, don't do embarrassing things!

This comment from one matrixphreak007 sums it up for me pretty well (and check out the near-perfect grammar!):

Facebook can do whatever the hell it wants. It’s its own company. Don’t like it? Don’t sign up. You can’t complain about “privacy” when you post information about yourself on the internet. You don’t want people to know something about you? Then, keep it to yourself and don’t publicize it in a world wide network of information.

Afraid someone won't hire you because of your stance on abortion? Screw 'em. You don't want to work for someone who takes irrelevant information into account anyway.

As long as all we're talking about is opinions, photos, group affiliations, and the like—and not seriously sensitive information like e-mail addresses, social security numbers, credit card numbers—what's the big deal? Simply avoid doing stupid things, and take responsibility for your speech and actions. If a company passes you up for a job because of those photos of your drunken spring break escapades, tough shit. You probably don't deserve the job anyway.

Friday, May 7, 2010

You know things are absolutely batshit fucking insane in Washington when John Boehner is the voice of reason

John Boehner, who is wrong about everything, is right about this:

“If they are a U.S. citizen, until they are convicted of some crime, I don’t see how you would attempt to take their citizenship away,” Mr. Boehner said. “That would be pretty difficult under the U.S. Constitution.”

Meanwhile, perpetual bunion on the big toe of democracy, Joe Lieberman, is defending his bill thusly:

Citing with approval news reports that President Obama has signed a secret order authorizing the targeted killing of a radical Yemeni-American cleric, Anwar Al-Awlaki, Mr. Lieberman argued that if that policy was legal — and he said he believed it was — then stripping people of citizenship for joining terrorist organizations should also be acceptable.

So, of Obama, Lieberman, and Boehner, Boehner is the only one not in favor of shredding the Constitution.

Also, why aren't more liberals pissed about Obama's targeted assassination program? It's worse than Bush, for crying out loud. Bush only wanted to detain people indefinitely without due process, not actually kill them.... Hypocritical much?

9/11 is an excuse to be a racist/xenophobic/bigoted asshat

Or at least that's the impression you get from some New Yorkers, many of whom are entirely indistinguishable from your most knuckle-dragging mouth-breathing southern hicks. Kinda disappointing. Of course, backwards ways of thinking are common in people who've lived in one place their whole lives. Native New Yorkers seem to be the least progressive (to put it nicely). Look at these quotes from a couple of idiots pissed off about the idea of a mosque being built near Ground Zero:

Others decried the idea of building a mosque so close to where their relatives died.

"Lower Manhattan should be made into a shrine for the people who died there," said Michael Valentin, a retired city detective who worked at ground zero. "It breaks my heart for the families who have to put up with this. I understand they're [building] it in a respectful way, but it just shouldn't be down there."

Others such as Barry Zelman said the site's location will be a painful reminder.

"[The 9/11 terrorists] did this in the name of Islam," Zelman said. "It's a sacred ground where these people died, where my brother was murdered, and to be in the shadows of that religion, it's just hypocritical and sacrilegious."

Couldn't help notice those guys don't seem to object to the Christian church near Ground Zero.

Oh by the way, I'm pretty sure the only people who still call it Ground Zero are tourists and reporters. It's "World Trade Center". Thanks.
In the eighties, people would often fix themselves a depressing dinner of leftovers, then take that dinner into another room and watch TV while eating. This is what I learned by reading stories by Mary Gaitskill and Frederick Barthelme. I'm reading Gaitskill's Bad Behavior. I've read the first four stories. On the back, Alice Adams (the author, not the Booth Tarkington character) says the stories are "ferocious" and "terrifying". The stories I've read so far aren't ferocious or terrifying. They're not bad. They're rife with competence. They have those competent and unsatisfying endings that a lot of short stories seem to have. Have you noticed that people hardly even try to write interesting endings? I think I'll skip ahead to "Secretary", even though I know James Spader won't be in it like he was in the movie. But maybe in that story the sex will not be as tame as in the ones I've read so far.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

It's funny how many 20-somethings think their writing is actually worthy of publication.

It's sad how contemporary writers don't realize that most contemporary writing is shit compared to that of previous generations.