Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Walking at Night

I often choose paths, less lit by afar, 
for there is little risk, in what's inevitably bright.

There are times, many times, where I'd rather not live, 
hence traveling dark paths especially during night.

Walking, passing, doubling back, caught staring.  
Through yellowed windows, a man sits at 80.
His chair, his posture, the TV, me at 80. 
Yellow walls, clear glass, flickering future, leather lazy.

Coasting by, I beg not, for old age comes to all.
Why rush what's inevitable, some do choose to fall. 

Why bother walking, when you can just sit and rot?
Because rotting is just sitting, when walking is not.

I feel pity, in my gut, for my life, for my choices.
Should I have changed? Never moved? Entertained other's voices?

What's real, what's fake, what's right, what's wrong.
Close your eyes, embrace the night, kiss and hum, cicada's song.

I know when I ask out loud just to die, 
all pain's remedied looking up at the sky.

Pacing the stars, late at night, grass soft, at my feet. 
Your chest bare, to my ear,  beat beat, a stammer beat....

If you walk, think of death; do choose a less lit path.
For we're all seeking answers, this here, aftermath.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

I'm Always Missing Out

I'm driving West, to work, the Jitney is heading East. I've just never had a place to stay out there....that's why I don't go, otherwise I'd be there with bells on.  What does a Hamptonite look like? Is her pussy tanned, wet, blond and waxed? I'm always missing out....

Tahrir Square is packed with Egyptians fighting for their government to change, again....democracy? I wanna feel like a part of something. I wanna be there waving a flag, pretending I know who or what will help me, not take more of my rights away.  I'm always missing out....

Bill Cunningham is stalking 5th ave, snapping photos, catching black as the in color block of a rainy summer...why didn't I think of that. I have a camera.  Dude's 80+.  I'm always missing out....

Indian is the new Persian like Persian was the new Italian. Dosa's, Debashish Battacharya, The Billionaire's Apprentice, Neon Indian, Calcutta on a hot Wednesday night. I love Indians, I have Indian friends, well, a friend.  I should meet more.  Learn more about India, differences between North and South, Punjabi and Bengali. Apply to IIT.  Wish I studied abroad.  I'm always missing out....

My friend is a geological scientist...she got a job offer in Hawaii!  Sooo in demand now.  Gasland II is about to release..not that she deals with fracking.  Documentaries are my love.  I could think of something to film.  Can't I?  I wish I had studied something cooler.  Just pulled up to the Leasing Office where I work.  There's a leak coming through the ceiling.  Wish I was en engineer or an architect.  Would have built this place better. I'm always missing out....

Edward Snowden just wanted to inform us.  Wish I could give something to our whole nation like he did.  Whistleblower smishtleblower.  Hope Ecuador picks him up.  I know an Ecuadorean girl. Maybe she has family there in government? I should reach out to her.  She'd probably think I was a creep since I haven't talked with her since I was young.  But isnt that what Facebook is for?  She just had a baby.  "Congratulations!  Do you know anyone in Ecuadorean parliament?"  Dumbass, you're too late.  I'm always missing out....

The Venice Biennale looks like a kids art project in the cafeteria of Connetquot Elementary School.  I could have submitted something better.  Maybe I will next year.  A dollar sign puzzle made of lottery tickets with everyone's wishes written down on the tickets...with a bible verse cut in the middle of it, and prayer hands painted over the tickets?  That'll be ironic...wanting to win money, but praying to God to win of poverty?  That's what these art critics look for, isn't it?  Six steps deep..Bobby Fisher type of shit.  I wish I was a better chess player, and visited St. petersburg, or Leningrad.  I like Leningrad better than the new name St. petersburg.  Lenin, Stalin, Putin...boys boys boys, Schlagen.  I miss went by too fast. My 10-year reunion is this summer.  Sleep in bunk beds and pound batty blues and wings at the IB.  Not gonna go though,  I couldnt' wait for it to end while there so I'll probably be miserable.  Hopefully my friends will post pics.  Thank God for Facebook, since....I'm always missing out....

James Turrell is at the Guggenheim.  Dude bought a crater in the middle of nowhere and has underground rooms like cave scenes from some Kubrick apocalyptic never produced. Should I take the train in?  See light formations for like 10 bucks on the upper east side. Kinda busy though, with work and all.  My buddy's done recess lighting in his bedroom, maybe we can get together and fuck around with mirrors.  Fucking hours this week are brutal though...whatevs, they're just lights.  I'm always missing out....

Grucci firework family was just at Eisenhower Park the other night during the Philharmonic's performance.  Totally should have went to that.  DVR had nothing good saved anyway.  Wait, that's on the big lawn where the goose shit all day, and there'll probably be mad mexicans over there taking up all the park benches, and there'll be nowhere to park, or sit...and that damned Leisure Pass, I never bought that thing.  It'll cost me ten bucks to get in the place..and it's fucking 45 minutes away at least.  Forget it, I've seen fireworks before..and the Philharmonic's on PBS every other night...I won't even bother.  I'm alway missing out....

Sitting here watching Thump.  Shit's getting me tres jealouso. Wanna eat pussy and molly and whatever's on the table.  I wanna try everything...well, not everything. Not Sisa, or H...but anything else. Buy those gloves with the glowy finger tips, start moving em around in the dark while rolling a poker chip back and forth between my fingers.  Trippin.  Haven't danced since dancing wasn't fucking.  I keep hearing about clubs down in meatpacking, near the Standard, a shit kicking beer garden over there and KAzino.  I have to get over there, dress nice, have someone with me...who would I bring though...and wait, isn't that the bridge and tunnel crowd? That is probably a sweaty guido mess over there, especially in the summer.  Thats right, all the cool people leave the city in the summer on weekends.  Where do the cool kids go?  Oh yea...that Jitney, that God dammed Ambassador, who's on those things...what's their pussy look like.  Is it tanned, is it wet? Is it blond, is it brunette?  I'm always missing out...

Sunday, June 30, 2013

NAtasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812

David puts down glass.  Rye to lips. A horn blows. Red pleather couch. Sitting upright. Black man in lipstick has me stare into his eyes. "You better behave" he says. "Look at me, I said look at better behave. I'll have my eye on this one" he says to neighbor.  Reading pamphlet.  Family Tree diagram. Who's fucking who, who's best friends, who's important, someone poisons them self. Off we go. Contemporary Moscow. Rye to lips.

Natasha's engaged! Andrey's off to war - no more fun.  Yearning.  Writing. Waiting. Visit soon-to-be family?! Father-in-law wretch.  Sister-in-law frump.  SOnya's on board, thank God for company.  Ladies due for entertainment. Velour capes. Strobe, tempo, ass slap, cocaine on my table.  Anatole? Gorgeous. Cock. Temptation. Heart flutter. "He touched my arm as he passed." Desire. COnfusion. WHo she thought she loved changed in an instant. Familiar. Rye to lips. A duel. Shot. Missed. Opera, synth, red, echo, bow, tear. Napkin. "We write things down. When we love and think, we write things down," it's Moscow in 1812. Decision. New route. New man. Helene & Dolokhov's Midnight plan. Marya's Catch. Same life. Mistake. Disowned. Depression. Wasted life if not sharing with absolute one.  Rye to lips. Arsenic. Natasha. Survival. Natasha. Maestro and corner's perched Jazz & Country. Enlightenment. Balaga shakers. Tap tap tapping on my table.  Inevitability. Andrey returns. Disgust. Acceptance. Internal. Comet in the shape of Lincoln Center chandelier.  Soothing Pierre. NAtasha percolates. Natasha's no comet. To glow, that's easy.  Built in. Trajectory, choosing a Path? She might as well not choose. She gets there anyway. David takes away empty glass.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

"La Passione" - James Franco's Trial by Fire

"La Passione" felt first like it was filmed similar to A Single Man.  FRame after frame, eerily rolling by, slower and slower, letting you fester and seep into what's about to happen.  We follow our eyes, their eyes, her eyes, her breasts, will they be exposed?  Oh Natalia...the glue does hold.  As do you, the minute you're the muse.  We hope for your happiness, although your chosen to be doomed, to be a good little girl in a place that isn't you, with friends that aren't yours.  Nor is this place anymore.  You've lived well beyond your short time and your beauty just adds fuel to the fire.  Should you fight back?  Could you?  Ill-begotten thoughts such as these wash from you during your baptism, your death's cleansing and last rite's ritual before acceptance of sacrifice.  Cliff Martinez creeps in, dubbing Sleep No More and it's dancy naked minotaur meeting head to head with artistic direction from Julie Taymor's Frida, or just James Franco and his dreams of The Cell, and leather, and Jean Paul Gaultier.  Her angel reassures her that this is meant to be, for the public may choose one to bestow their own insecurities, and therefore set that sinner to death for all's well-being.  She whispers, "Women these days self-immolate for what you, our Joan, is willing to preserve, and that's truth."  She thinks to herself. My truth.  That I exist, and that you have earned the same right to take your life, as they, the public, believe they do.  And when they do, they'll know, because of me, because of you, because of this, that they are wrong.  And that they need to change...and so they will.  Some day, when they open their eyes as wide as you, and I, they will.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Sorrow: A Joyful Day at MoMaPS1 w/ The National

Inside the prison walls of the MoMaPS1 I stood next to my glory hole and stared at the entrance waiting for my buddy to arrive.  You can learn a lot about a place and yourself when watching people walk into a venue.  You stand there faultless and perfect as one suggests of their own character, as I do, and I judge every person who walks in the door. Why not, I'm doing it in my head, so I'm not hurting anyone, plus I paid to torture myself and I want to see who my fellow sufferers are.  We all came for some reason, it's just 6 long hours before we discover whether we're better than who we were when we came.

We grabbed two beers each and strided out of the corrugated cement cell where they kept four hitch trailers and two kegs.  The trailers were 70's style, David Hockney, motel parking lot, middle of Mesa AZ.  They were not for the band's equipment. Teal, faded, paint streaks down each side and flat tires leaning wonky on the cement, balanced errantly by their crippled metal hitch arms.  "You can definitely hide a body in one of those things" I said, as we turned to get some beers.   We needed alcohol.  The next 6 hours we would be subjecting ourselves to a performance by the band The National.  Not that this renowned band sucks so bad that we need to get hammered in order to sit through their show; on the contrary. An idea by an artist named Ragnar Kjartansson was to have a band play one of their songs over and over and over again for a 6-hour period in order to study human behavior regarding monotony, repetition, sanity, cerebral data collection, how people cope with faucet drip drip drip earworm fuck.  The National just happened to have been approached and decided to take the challenge. There's much to be said about saying yes.  In that key decision we discover the driver behind the art, or what we as spectators believe we took note of while watching said performance; the culpability of a feat men die to find in their lives to test themselves, to learn more about their limitations and ultimately, when in front of a crowd, impress others.

Some might look at a day spent listening to a broken record, repeating and repeating and repeating relentlessly til the batteries give out, or your neighbor who runs the building kills the circuit breaker on your apartment  before celebrating with a revelatory whaling on your wall "try to play that fucking song again now asshole!" as a mere form of torture.  For some, maybe.  For others, like that girl Brianne Larsen who lived in the apartment below me in college who kept "Fade Into You" by Mazzy Starr on Repeat until she finished cleansing her soul of the memories of my friend's infidelity.  These things, these redundancies, they often work you out, or they fuck you up even more.  Hopefully you clear new cognitive crossroads, manipulate and solidify memories so you can tap into them the next time you listen.  I don't know for sure what Ragnar is trying to achieve but I do know that when someone listens to a song over and over again, they're doing it for a reason, and that reason is always to remember; to go back to another time.  I might want to forget what's going on in my daily life and therefore I play my favorite song over and over.  This takes my mind off of what I currently dislike, and places me comfortably where I'd rather be; where I once was. With time, we always only remember the good things, and with a melody on infinite repeat, all we have is time.

We waited in line to get into the tin dome they constructed for Sunday Sessions at MoMaPS1.  This was the finale for the space and we were there to see the band fall apart, stutter, forget their lines, fall to the floor in a heart attack wham grab the chest curl up reach to the crowd and shake til their dead.  The people around us, in their slouching beanies, tight orange distressed khakis, Jean button down shirts, with chain cross necklaces and hand-knit sweaters were hoping for the same deterioration, whether they'd admit it or not.  We stood in the crowd and looked at the Coast of Utopia on stage.  They had cameras everywhere like a movie set(of which they must've been filming a documentary) and then a fog mist machine blowing up behind the lead guitarist. The stage was gray, luminous, foreboding, like the song they had to play.  A song that starts with "sorrow found me when I was young" and consists of lines such as "sorrow that put me on the pills" and "I live in a city sorrow built". Not a song for the kids of course, but a melodramatic tour de force that might make you want to jump from that ledge of whatever cliff you've chosen for your last leap.  The song plays its roll, as do the actors on stage.  We as the audience were the willing cheerleaders.  As the song would come to an end, everyone in the crowd would clap and whistle, and come to a calm.  Seconds later, "sorrow found me when I was young".  And the cheers grew louder and more supportive.  I looked at my friend as we too hooted and smacked our hands into each other, and I said, I think we would cheer them on until they're so close to death we wouldn't know we killed 'em.  The crowd, or maybe humans by nature, love to see suffering and after all, that's what we were there for.  Could they do it, could they make it through?  Of course they could.  After three hours, we wished they had to play for twelve.  Six was nothing.  It wasn't the time that became the focus but rather where their heads had to have gone while singing such a depressing song.  Who were they thinking about when they sang "sorrow's my body on the waves"?  "Sorrow's the girl inside my cave"?  What girl? As Matt Berninger, vocalist for The National, would look out on the crowd, a smiling, happy, gleaming, cheery fucking crowd, egging him on to sing a song we really have no clue the meaning behind, I stood and thought to myself that this guy hasn't smiled once.  He must actually hate us.  He must hate our ignorance and excitement for the sheer fact that he has been trying over and over to convey to us the meaning behind this song, and yet we applaud every chink in their armor that appears as the hours march on.  At one point the lead guitarist stood his guitar on its neck and started patting it on the back like a set of bongos.  Some actions were surely out of boredom or just a desire for changing the pace.  Others were absolute brilliance, like where the drummer stepped off stage for a piss break, and they held the song's beginning melody on repeat, low and strummed, and once he returned, he picked up on the 4th beat of the verse, and everyone went nuts.  We wanted more, we wanted to hear Sorrow - we wanted to feel Sorrow, we wanted to know Sorrow for what or whom it was written, and instead we learned that the fantasy that this is, was anything but torture.

I wanted to believe that they took this challenge so they could discover something inside themselves, and learn that this song would be one they'd never want to play again for the next 10 years.  I wanted them to faint, atrophy their muscles, storm off the stage in defiance of continuing, have some sort of nervous breakdown.  I think, if anything, they will play this song in the future and resent the fact that they can never play it with as much emotion as they could achieve this day.  They'll be annoyed that anyone hearing Sorrow live at a future venue will not really know what they accomplished with this song, how close they came to this song, and that they'll never respect any song more, no matter what they write.

Looking up at these men, we were jealous.  These men were given an opportunity we as men look for all our lives.  And not much exists anymore that is impressive; that hasn't been done.  Beautiful women in the audience with their smiling faces, enchanted minds, bobbing their heads with the cadence of the song - they take away from the fact that this was supposed to be difficult.  Their faces would be motivation enough to continue through the night. And yet, these girls in the crowd would happily bed these guys for even more reason now then before.  We want that awe, that admiration.  Instead we will feel our sorrow while watching them close out the 6th hour of their journey and wishing we were them.  Wishing we were the ones achieving something monumental in our lives, but rather we're left to stride out those cement walls with the rest our peers, contemplating our lives and awaiting our moment to shine...until then though, we'll flick on The National's "Sorrow" and play it through, again and again, to bring us right back here to forget what might irk us tomorrow, because no longer does a song of "sorrow" bring us anything but joy.

Sorry Pete - Never Made It To You in Time

Hey Uncle Pete!  I figured I'd write you because we both know it means more to put it down on paper; gives you the chance to look back at it and second guess my grammatical errors :).  In life, we learn lessons, we try and leave something behind and make the best damn impression we can on this place so that there's nothing more we could have done better.  I'm still trying to convince my dad that you're a wonderful guy, but there's something about you being better looking that he just could never get over :)

I'll never stop learning from you; I don't care what you think, but that's the truth.  In this life and any for that matter.  I look at what dictates being a success in life, or what that truly means, and to me, it's a combination of things.  First is having a family, getting that succession in familial generation; passing on the name or genes.  It's important, what else do we have to show for this life but our families....our travels?  Our studies?  Those may make us intrinsically valuable in and of a conversation, a culutral moment, however they sure as heck don't stand the test of time like our blood and our babies.   Second, is being a great father.  That means a million things.  A monster commitment.  Monster meaning paramount, meaning Mount Fuji big in terms of importance.  Showing up, providing, supporting emotionally and physically, being a teammate, being a best friend....sounds cheesy, I know, but dammit, cheesy is warm and necessary and love all mixed in, and that's the good stuff.   You don't need me to tell you that you are a fantastic father.  That'll only pump you up more than that confident bravado I have to stare down every picnic behind the horseshoe pit.  Heineken in-hand, the guy's unstoppable.  It's like a white-knuckled batter staring down a fastball, only this guy's a ringer :)  No but seriously, there's this wonderful place in my heart that the Morans fill.  It's a big space, a friggin Penthouse apartment to be honest.  I can't say that a space like that could be created by just any family, nor could it be imitated.  There's just too much great history.  And that leads me to my third most important thing we can do as men, as people here in this wonderfully odd predicament of life.  We need to create a story.  A story that can be told by family members for years to come.  A message or mission that someone you or I love can take with them through their lives and pass on to another who's willing to listen.  It's nothing specific of course, but it's a lifestyle, an all-encompassing ethic.   Patty and Kerry and Me and My Dad, and every other Madden that's walked the staircases of Old Bridge and shared in the Taste of Home you always provide us, we can't help but pass on that story, that spirit of gentle zingers and genuine interest in the jobs we endeavor towards and the ones we date for no matter how short the courtship.  That's not something one can't be taught but rather inherently has as ones demeanor, ones outlook on life, their choice to be happy, or to be unhappy.   It's always been in you, and it's become inherent in me because of you.  I mean it.  I truly, lovingly thank you.  These things are priceless, and they will all become part of my collective story, my tell-all to those I love and teach along the way.  I may not be the one to teach or touch them directly forever, but that doesn't mean I stop existing within those I've affected so deeply, and that's the story, that's the goal.  That's how we live forever.  We live forever, without needing to endure eternity.  

With the utmost in honesty, love and shared experience for these many years, I'd have it no other way.  - timeline of aliases - The Geneseo College Kid, The Finance City Slicker, The California King, and now The Jr. Puzzler gone Realtor - eventually I'll be in Fashion, Television, a Chef and a Radio Host for a Political Blogosphere  :) 

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Two Beggars

(Two men at a sidewalk street corner verbally collide)

-You, you there...yea im talking to you.
-Yea dickhead, you...
-Im talking to you....what the fuck?!  You're sitting there all depressed, mopey, hanging your head, holding that cardboard ass Bay of Pigs sign....what does that even mean?  
-Well, I was there, and it was not right what we did.
-But I dont give a shit if you were there.
-Why would not you?  I fought for this country.
-So what...
-So What?
-Yea, so fucking what...Bay of Pigs, Iraq, Vietnam, Normandy....who gives a fucking different?
-Well, I think I am, after all I served this country, what did you do?
-What did I do? I fucking showed up to work everyday. Fuck you think about that?
-I do not know, I guess I would have to ask what type of work.... to me, showing to work seems normal....nothing special, unless you are giving back to society.
-Nothing special?! Who's special? What's special? How do you come about special?  What do you want people to think, you standing there on the sidewalk, outside Foot Locker for chrissake, mentioning your two seconds worth of fame during the Bay of Pigs invasion.  What does that even mean?  What does that mean to me?  You were storming the shores?   How many days you storm the shores?  Two?  Three?  Five?
-No, more like 20 sir. 
-20 days, that's your whole life.  That's what this says to me, this sign.  You've lived 20 fucking days that meant something to you. Did they mean anything to anyone else?  Is that why you're standing here pissing me and everyone else walking by off?
-God knows.  God watches.
-God knows? God doesn't know shit considering he's left you to stand here on the sidewalk holding a sign, waiting for a sign, when you and I both know you really wish you were not here holding a sign that's got your life's work written on it.  And now I'm the fucking guy taking your sign, your little brown cardboard tattered-to-shit sign, seriously for once.  I walk by you every goddam day, and all you do is look to the sky, hold up your sign, and I don't even know what the ain't got a ain't looking for handouts.  What is it, some peace of mind?  Some short bit of, hey maybe I'll make this schmuck think about something when he walks by...maybe I'll give this ignorant prick something good and filthy, and weird to think about for a minute?  Because there's been days...I'm tellin you, days where....
-(The homeless man interrupts him) Maybe I am thinking I wished you would have served too..maybe I am annoyed that you did not, and that you do not know what it is like...but then again, not everyone can take it anyway. 
-You think I can't take it? Are you fucking crazy? 
-I do not know this, can you?
-I've gone through more shit in my life than you can imagine.
-You are speaking 
-What'd you just say to me?
-You are starting off with a sentence that does not specifically detail what you have encountered. Stalling.
-Stawwing? You mean stalling?
-Exactly what?!  Why don't you fucking say it right so I can understand what the fuck it is that you're saying.  Or better yet, write it on another one of your goddam signs!
-Stalling.  You are trying to come up with your story, the "more shit in your life than I can imagine story."
-I'm not fucking anything, you better watch yourself you little Indian fuck.
-I am not Indian thank you, I am Bosnian.
-Bosnian...Indian you're annoying.  Pardon my french, but you are.  A little Bosnian whatever holding a fucking sign, bothering me and everyone walking by.  We all have to feel bad about ourselves because we don't give you attention?  I don't need that every time I walk to work in the morning.  You're a goddam nuisance.  Like getting dog shit on my shoes and I have to scrape it off with my envelope opener.
-You can take a walk then mister buddy, no one is keeping you here.
-I was trying to walk, but you're the one in my face every morning....making me nuts.
-Please. Walk then.  I am allowed to stand here and hold my sign.  Please.
-Not without criticism you're not, and I'm criticism.  Critty-effin-sizzm.  Your sign doesn't make you better than me.  It doesn't.  Hang your bay of pigs out to dry where someone gives a shit.  See a psychiatrist.  Talk to a friend.  Quit whoring yourself out to morning traffic and wasting your life.  
-Ok then. Thank you sir.
-See ya...enjoy the day, alright?  It's supposed to be a beauty. 
-Ok, thank you. I will try.  

(The man looks up to the sky holding his sign, the other man striding on, checking his shoes; the morning commute rages on).