Thursday, June 22, 2006

We're back.

get up out your seats when the hip is in the building
i brought my microphone with me so I I didn't come for chilling
got a gorgeous mic, what yours is like? Comparison:
I'm Paul Mc, John Len and George Harrison
And you cats? Wanna-be stars like Ringo
Ain't a damned thing sweet when the chariot swing low
it's like passover, cats hand me bread
then I broadcast jehovah to the land of the dead
i wanna say something that nobody has said,
roll up all this loose change in my head
I'm cashing it in
to try and make a difference with a passionate pen
but they done made bullshitting high fashion again
the microphone is my church
the beat's the steeple, when you
open up the doors, see we ain't even equal
part one I played the priest, this is the heathen sequel
your whole style is deaf, meaning you don't speak to people
and you're bound to hate because the knowledge I flip
expose your sound as fake like some collagen lips

Monday, June 19, 2006

My other man-crush

Okay, so I happen to think Dallas Mavericks/HD Net/arthouse cinema-owning billionaire Mark Cuban is the shizzle. I'm very comfortable with my open admiration of the man who can, depending on what day you catch him, seem like a glimpse of what it would be like if your cool stoner buddy from college became a millionaire ("I mean come on, does it really matter if we say Poo Poo or shit? Of course not.")...or a complete deranged madman, depending on what day you catch him. In his latest blog entry, he defends an expletive-laden outburst to ESPN. I love it that this dude is so committed to his team that he's cussing out reporters, parking his yacht near the headquarters of rival teams, ice-grilling NBA officials. I love it.

Here's the post. It's a funny read even if you aren't a Mavericks fan like myself.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Dear Gay Jesus,

If you know me very well, you know that, though I love all types of music, hip-hop music is my obsession and my passion. And if you were to ask me who my favorite hip-hop artist of all time is, I would (after some hemming and hawing) pronounce that El-P's music changed my life more than any other hip-hop artist. That's saying a lot. That's counting "Nation of Millions." The reasons I usually give in defense of ranking a relative newcomer over the likes of Chuck D. are usually pretty vague. It all just comes down to a feeling. When I first heard El-P's "Fantastic Damage," I realized that there were new things out there waiting to be done - it isn't true that nothing's new under the sun. This dude is on some new shit. He's remixing a lot of rock records these days, and I am particularly fucking wowed by his remix of Hot Hot Heats "Goodnight, Goodnight" - a thunderstorm of 808 bass drums and minor chord synthesizers that makes me want to throw my chair out the window. You can buy it on i-Tunes, just search for "El-P." The drum sounds kind of sound like Spank Rock's "Bump Short" - it almost sounds like a sample of "Bump Short." Except, you know, it's better in every fuckin' imaginable way.

Friday, June 09, 2006



In the "Costner" department, I'm too tired and hellbent on getting drunk to give a real thorough run-down, but here are the day's pertinent shits for me:

4:00 PM - I show up to teach my class at the Atkins Branch Library, where I'm teaching probably the greatest group of students I have ever met to make their own film - they're dealing with teen suicide. The script is on another level - they "want it to have different timelines, and intersecting storylines like 'Pulp Fiction.'" Okay. About 4:30 PM, my cell phone rings and it's Costner's assistant, but I don't answer it. One of my kids says "Who is that?" and I'm like "It's Costner."
The kid just looks at me like I said it was T.I. on the phone. The librarian guffaws incredulously. But you know, the funny thing is I was telling the truth. I let it go to voicemail.

5:00 PM - It is hotter than Hades in Shreveport, but all of the media are already camping out on the steps of the venue. I have to give them props. I got them all some bottled water.

6:45 PM - I have taken a gaggle of media folks up to the entrance to the VIP room, so they can get shots of Costner entering the party. It's hot here too, so we hang out and catch him as he goes in the party then we dip pre-Demi Moore. He shows up dressed like Chris Brown, white tee, overshirt hanging open, punk-rock fitting black Levi's, black shades like the Fonz. Hollywood must think "Fonzyish" is a pretty good look.
My favorite vampire of all time will show up in the same outfit later.

7:15 PM - Passing through the VIP area, I bump into this cute dude Chris from Centenary, who is a hip-hop fan and I know through Sara and Allison Cormier. I'm like "Wow man, you live large." He laughs it off and I keep moving. Tickets to this thing were $500. GANGSTA.

7:30 PM - I meet Frank Page, the announcer from the Louisiana Hayride. He's autographing books in the lobby. I take the media folks up to the room we're gonna do a little press junket in, and I'm designated the leader of the discussion. So I'm standing beside Costner, who is seated, picking media folks to ask him questions. I make a motion for John to get a picture of this - he says he has some that he'll send me. The little junket lasts about 20 minutes, and I have to say it was one of the coolest moments of my life. Every question folks asked, Costner really thought about it and answered from his heart. Someone asked if he was nervous, and he went into this incredibly personal diatribe about the danger of going out on a limb when you're famous.

I'm being completely serious: the guy is awesome. I think maybe he's the last of a dying breed of movie stars. There is an air of class tempered with humility and self-awareness.

8:00 PM - With the junket over, I take a break and cause a little mischief that shall remain my secret with one of the media guys. They love their jobs, I'll say that much. I walk out of the concert area and Costner is standing incognito with a couple of security guards in the lobby
, so I just lamp out on the wall beside him. There is this awesome moment when, during a retrospective of his career in film, he peeks through a little window and watches the crowd watch him on the big screen. People are just walking by and I'm like, fuck, three 16-hour work days this week and I have zero complaints. I don't give a damn what anyone says: I grew up on movies, I watched Dances with Wolves with my momdukes. There is no shame in my game. I'm a Costner fan.

8:01 PM - I flip whig when Hal Sutton thanks me from the stage. Super bananas.

8:02 PM - The theme from "The Untouchables" starts playing and Costner heads towards the stage through the audience, kissing babies and shit on the way. It takes 15 minutes to get there, he's interacting with the crowd so much. I figure, maybe the hardest part of my night (wrangling the media, keeping video cameras out of the show) is over, so I post my ass up on the back wall. I figure the excitement is mostly over, so I'll take in the music.

8:20 PM - Keiffer Sutherland and his wife or girlfriend walk past me and post up on the wall like two feet to my right. I geek out, but he's giving her a backrub and whispering in her ear and whatnot so I just let them be. I had a digital camera in my hand, but I just don't feel like disturbing this dude. He's very small, and is dressed like a punk rocker: blue jean jacket with collar up like the Fonz, tight-rolled black Levi's, black combat boots, hair all fucked up. The dude is really in full effect, and I'm standing there thinking "Lost Boys," "Stand by Me," "Flatliners..."

8:21 PM - My boss rolls up and goes "I just met Demi Moore" and I go "Have you met Keifer?" He flips whigs, proceeds to lose shit.

8:25 PM - My homegirl Werner walks up as Keifer sits down. I point him out and she joins us in the geek-fest. We agree that, while it would be wrong to take a photo of him, there is no harm in trying to pretend to take Werner's picture and actually take a picture of him. It didn't work out, but here's the attempt we made (up top). He's the dude at the end of the row that you can see. Not that you can tell - he may as well be a sasquatch from this crappy-ass photo. Oh well.

9:30 PM - After lamping for a while, I leave. I worked 16 hours yesterday. I gotta right to put my feet up. I pick up a Freschetta and a sixer and that pretty much catches us up to date.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

best. documentary. ever.

If you, like approximately 99.999999999% of Shreveport-Bossier City's population, ignored completely the fact that there was a film festival happening in Shreveport tonight, you missed what easily ranks among the greatest documentary films I have ever seen: "The Great Happiness Space: Tale of an Osaka Love Thief." The film tells the story of a "Host Club" in Osaka, where young men charge approximately $12 an hour to hang out with young women whose hearts are obviously seeking any kind of attention, love, or just the company of good-looking young guys. The more money the women spend at their table, the more attention the "hosts" give them, which results in a kind of competition between the patrons, some of whom can spend $10,000-30,000 per night. The first half of the film plays out beautifully, showing how the boys walk the thin line between pretending to love their patrons and actually caring for them. There are some heartbreaking moments, like when a "host" subtly tries to tell one of his guests that she should stop spending her money before she loses it all on him, because he doesn't love her: This is how he pays his rent. I sat there crying in a room full of sixteen year-old girls sending text messages, who seemed to enjoy the film...on the level of "Japanese people look funny." Any-fucking-way.

The bombshell drops at the film's halfway point, when we learn that approximately 70% of the customers at these male "host clubs" (which are completely legal and very popular) are actually female "hosts," many of whom admit that they earn the money that they spend at host clubs by performing oral sex on their own patrons at the clubs where they work. For me, this turned the entire film upside down and added a level of gender politics that was completely, dizzlyingly new to me: Physical hookers releasing their pent-up hatred and loneliness by visiting emotional hookers. I couldn't help noticing that the physical hookers (female) made $500 a day giving head while the emotional hookers (male) made $5,000 a day giving heart-jobs. I thought of the glass ceiling, and the myriad other parallels between the lives of these people and their American, non-sex industry counterparts.

On another level, it all just seemed like something out of a Phillip K. Dick novel, with friends for hire, emotion menus (literally - you pick from a menu when you enter a host club, according to how you want to feel). It was chill bump-inducing, goddamn brilliant stuff. I'm sure the three of us who were actually watching it all felt the same way.

On another note, the LSUS bathrooms feature a publication called "The Toilet Paper," which is taped to the walls in all of the stalls. It appears to be an officially-sanctioned publication of the school. In this edition, they featured a list entitled:

-Your wife is harrier than your dog
-You drive as well as you speak English
-You refer to Circle K as "The Family Business"
-You consider McDonald's a nice change of pace from your usual dinner

First of all, I want to state it right here that I grafitti'd every single one of the stupid goddamn things. Secondly, why don't they just tape pages from "Mein kampf" to their stall doors? Thirdly, BOOOOOO to whatever faculty asshole approves/advises this racist tripe. If this link gets sent around and the comments section lights up, good. You ca host all of the international films you want, but if I have to read this redneck bullshit whenever I take a leak between movies, the community's image of LSUS is never going to change.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Overheard in my office

Person 1: "I quit smoking for three months, but then I got attacked by this housecat and started smoking again."

Person 2: "Ha ha...uh..."

Person 1: "No, seriously. It was awful. I was mauled by a housecat."

Person 2: "Oh my God. I didn't know."

Person 1: "Yeah, so now I have this nervous disorder and I smoke."


Tuesday, May 30, 2006

catfish like whoa

My dad caught a 50 pound catfish yesterday. Waaaaaahhhhhhhh. Look at that man's face. He is a happy man.