Saturday, June 17, 2006

Today in the Middling City there is a brash warning that has those, like Yours Truly, in need of maneuvering mowers, in throes of joi: the air is in an agitated, polluted state and it has been advised from higher-up meteorologists that heavy lifting and such be avoided. Like the plague. Like touching mower blades. Like petting raccoons.
Yesterday had a marathon Starbucks editing day, five straight hours in their hyper-ac'd place until I looked down and noted that my legs were a neato shade of violet.
Today, for the sake of balance and reportage and science, I am working in a locally-owned coffee joint that has no ac on and I am sweltering.
Lesson learned. Always opt for cold when working on laptop.
When I first arrived here there were three women reading newspapers as a toddler that assumedly belonged to one of them tottered about, occasionally cracking his head on things and then screaming until one of them scooped him up and carried him outdoors. Then they'd knock on the large plate glass window amusing their little group hugely. Me and another laptopper were just not as amused.
Lesson learned. Always opt for cold, and child-free zones.
And never ever forget earbuds again to keep the screeches out, the soundtrack in.
On Thursday night went out with Kennedy and the jazz musicians, Bandmate Scott, and a couple of filmmakers for a post-concert repast. The music, speaking of soundtracks, overhead was a hideous blend of bad rock tunes, short on ironic inflections, just bad. Two of the bandmates are Brits and it was quickly noted that most of the badtunes were from their homeland. Suddenly Billy Joel came on and I noted loudly that now the quote unquote mix had reached rock bottom. Discussion turned to Mr. Joel and I regaled them with my Billy Joel lore: You know, the teleprompter on the piano, the pre-Mr. Joel stage arrival reading of The Rules (no requests, no Happy Birthday, no handing of any tapes whatsoever to Mr. Joel ... he had gone to court over stealing the riff of an aspirant). I then told them of how one of my Richmond Avenue roomies announed to me and Constance one evening that her younger brother had been living in our attic. We had heard music. He loved listening to Billy Joel. We let him continue living in the attic. We charged him dearly for the priviledge. But things took a weird turn when he listened to Mr. Joel louder and louder and Constance and I one night, arm-in-arm sung along to She's Only a Woman as if we were the deepest revellers in an earthy rathskellar. Tom/Attic Boy never spoke another word to either of us. Well, he never usually did. For he never usually left the attic, save for when he went to his engineerng classes. Then he moved back to Pennsyltucky.

Sweaty, working Love.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Had two divergent gigs today, the last one in the epicenter of the quaintness of Hamburg. You know, the place where thee hamburger originated.
On the way to said quaint gig I spotted a caffeine joint I had not seen before and whilst talking to my photo subject asked if she'd ever been there. She swore by their caffeine, and added another option. Common Ground. Since it was getting to be rush hour traffic I opted for the latter choice, it being on the same side of the street that I was wending along. First weird thing was the parking lot was empty save for four Amish-type men, all in hats, functionalware, like over-alls. I parked across the street. Inside the joint, billed as a restaurant/cafe I was overwhelmed by my solitude. I called out to see if anyone was inside. A zonked-out looking woman appeared from the shadows, in plainclothes. They were open for coffee. Looking around the room Yours Truly was amazed that this place had been airlifted from about three decades ago, replete with macrame wall-hangings, earthy artifacts, rough-hewn wooden furniture.
Some Biblical quotes on the wall gave this place away as thee Common Ground associated with the bakery, a religious commune, some would say cult. My pal Michael Niman reported extensively on this group, noting their zeal at having youngsters working, some anti-Semitic sentiment in their brochures, and on. The Buffalo Food Co-Op felt so strongly about these matters that they stopped carrying Common Ground bread after Niman's articles were published.
The zonked-out girl asked if I knew much about their community. For the sake of escaping in under several hours YT replied Nope.
Had the meager coffee, elated it was not drugged and my name is not now Sykirah or whatever. The muffin thing was okay. Zonky Girl had baked it.
Let us just file this under Fieldtrips that need not be repeated.

Common Love.

Monday, June 12, 2006

*NB: new, better Ana Mendieta link below for You*

As usual, there I was, minding my own business.
The business at hand was documenting art and happenstance at the Cuban American (no hyphen) exhibition yesterday. Upstairs, in the other gallery space, were four prints by none other than superstar Ana Mendieta, the artist who Yours Truly believes is responsible for planting a lucrative seed in the mind of Cindy Sherman. Mendieta had a fab Whitney retro a while ago, one of those altering experiences. What in earlier times (70's) was called an earth artist, site-specific, gender issues tossed in.
You may also recall the story of her untimely ending as I do - neighbors hear yelling, scream, thud. Ana Mendieta tossed out a window by her sculptor beau, Carl Andre. Who walks freely amongst us.
It's time for YT once again to wend my way out to the suburbs to begin attempt #2 to make some portraits of a doc (that's doctor to those in the non-know) who gave me the slip on Friday, leaving out the back door after a meeting as he had not shaved. This is Diana Ross behaviour. Not many can get away with this type of thing. Carl Andre defenestrates at will. Diana Ross can slap whomever she pleases. And docs can stiff photogs any time they wish.
Is this a democratic world.
Is Gitmo a Club Fed.
I rest my case.

Weaving, wending Love.