Tuesday, November 27, 2012

"We used to kiss all night..."

I've been throwing up for two days.
I spent the whole day in bed watching crappy sitcoms.
I couldn't sleep. I then got a fever I was shivering and the sweating seconds later
I heard this song this morning and it made me feel semi alive
 Solange - Losing You by Terrible Records

Friday, November 23, 2012

Monday, November 19, 2012

“I wanted a perfect ending. Now I've learned, the hard way, that some poems don’t rhyme, and some stories don’t have a clear beginning, middle, and end.” —Gilda Radner

Sunday, November 18, 2012


I've been bigging up Jessie Ware for time.
This performance further proves she's on another level
2mins in there's a scene where she's walking forward and her guitarist is walking with her back to her, then she turns and sings to him, then they're walking in the same direction then at the 3min mark she gives this look. This scene is so perfect and I've watched over and over. It feels like they're acting out the song. Its so subtle. It's shot by La Blogothèque so obv it's shot by the gods.

Sunday, November 11, 2012


Philip Roth to fiction: "Later, dude."

“After this, I decided that I was done with fiction,” he said, according to a translation by The Times. “I don’t want to read any more of it, write any more of it, and I don’t even want to talk about it anymore. I have dedicated my life to the novel: I have studied it, I have taught it, I have written it and I have read it. To the exclusion of almost everything else. It’s enough. I no longer feel this dedication to write what I have experienced my whole life. The idea of struggling once more with writing is unbearable to me.”

Friday, November 09, 2012

Transcripts of two phone calls late in September 1997

[phone rings]

ANNE: Hello?

JIM: Hi. Can you talk?

ANNE: Yes.

JIM: Okay. You know, I tried to talk to you earlier, but it's kinda tough. Would you agree?

ANNE: Huh?

JIM: Would you agree with that?

ANNE: Yeah.

JIM: Yeah. [unintelligible] Yeah, you asked me specifically what bothered me about you?

ANNE: Uh huh.

JIM: You got defensive about your friends, but you did take weed from Mark, and money from Ann. I think that bothered me. You know personally what bothers me are the mood swings. It's, you know, I'm not sure what I'm going to get. That's ... that wears on a guy. It wears on anybody, I guess. ... I think what went wrong is when we saw Debbie ... it all became real to us. It just, ah, I think it got complicated too quickly. And this situation isn't working itself out.

ANNE: What?

JIM: The situation here has just been dragging on, and it's made it worse.

ANNE: How did it get complicated?

JIM: I think I could probably deal with everything that was going on if all this shit wasn't going on here, you know? I mean, I honestly don't give a shit what you think of my background or if I've had it easy or not—that's fine. But I think you might agree this has been a weird, difficult, emotionally draining situation I've been in this summer.

ANNE: Yeah.

JIM: Yeah. Okay.

ANNE: And what else?

JIM: The Kurt and Courtney thing kind of bothered me.

ANNE: Really? Why?

JIM: Where you said about you thought it was good to just eat people up and spit them out.

ANNE: [Incredulous] What?

JIM: You left a message earlier today where you said that as a role model, women who just get into men's lives and destroy them...

ANNE: What does that have to do with Kurt and Courtney?

JIM: I think you actually mentioned her as a role model when you said that.

ANNE: No, I didn't.

JIM: Well, you might've ... but it's not really important.

[Jim brings something someone else had said, Anne hangs up when Jim refuses to reveal this person's name]

[start of call]

JIM: I don't really know what to say at this point. I got your last message. I wish you weren't jealous of me. I'm not really sure why you are. But, ah ... Do you realize how much I want to get along with you? How confusing you make it? How difficult you make it sometimes?

ANNE: [very quiet] Like when? You mean like today? [laughing slightly] Can't we just let bygones be bygones?

JIM: How am I supposed to feel when you talk about it's cool to withhold sex to get what you want?

ANNE: Huh?

JIM: What am I supposed to think when you talk about it being cool to withhold sex to get what you want?

ANNE: I got that idea from Miss Estrada [Anne's Women's Studies professor.] I was saying that that was something that I could say that would be outrageous to put on this little bulletin board that's right by the Women's Resource Center. You shouldn't apply it to us. I want you to come over so we could fuck, dummy.

JIM: Right.

ANNE: I'm here for you, so why don't you come over?

JIM: You know ... What's confusing to me is I don't even know if that's what you want or if that's what you think would make it better for me.

ANNE: No, that's not what I think would make it better for you.

JIM: But you aren't—two, three hours ago you're screaming, "You're never fucking me again!"

ANNE: Because you told me you were going to go on the road. All of a sudden, you know when you picked me up you were like, "Well, I'm going to go do my book." And I'm like, "What book?" You know, you didn't even tell me—I didn't even know what book you were talking about. You just assumed it was this, like—you just didn't have any qualms about that, going off and doing that. And before you were like, "Well, I'm going to do everything possible to postpone it." And now you're like, "Well, I'm going to go do my book."

JIM: Well, you're leaving messages where you're talking about destroying the male race, for Christ's sake.

ANNE: [laughing] I never said destroying the male race! Is it a race?

JIM: Gender, I guess.

ANNE: [still laughing] What? I like "the male race!" That's awesome! Because I wanted to be really outrageous and see what kind of response I'd get if I put that on the board. Like I told you before that I got printed in the paper because like they had all this controversy, like what people thought of stripping, like they had these big poster boards at the Women's Resource Center, these big things of construction paper, and then people write their opinions about whatever the question of the day is. And they just have paper for people to write. And I was the first person and I just wrote all this stuff! Went a little bit crazy. And like wrote the most extreme stuff I could think of. And it's like, "All women are prostitutes," and I got a lot of reaction, so I thought it would be funny, if I had gotten extreme that way. But not seriously. It's just like Stan and Barb. I'm serious! You know, I just want to push people's buttons. [unintelligible] to you, baby.

JIM: I gotta go.

ANNE: Why?

JIM: I have to go to sleep.

ANNE: No! I love you. Baby—

JIM: What?

ANNE: Will you come over and be with me?

JIM: You know, last night you're leaving messages ... we can't do this anymore, and I should fucking thank Christ for Debbie, and you wouldn't put up with any of my shit ... That's what I told you I can't deal with. It's the going back and forth.

ANNE: [unintelligible, Anne is talking very quietly] I promise. [significantly more unintelligible]

JIM: I think I'm going to listen over and over to the messages you earlier tonight.

ANNE: Which ones?

JIM: The ones where you told me how you feel about me.

ANNE: No ... why are you listening to them?

JIM: It's educational.

ANNE: How? That would be like if I had a tape of messages when you told me that I was spoiled. If I listened to that over and over. Don't listen, no ... Because it's called envy, and jealousy, and like, remember that one video of Notorious B.I.G. he says, "Envy and jealousy is just something you have to deal with." No, it means that you're all that! [talks about grammar, getting pot to smoke so she won't flip out...] I'm just happy right now because you're talking to me... [unintelligible, then talks about how she just needs to go off on her own when she's in a bad mood. Long passages here about how she plans on staying away from everybody when she has her own issues to deal with, etc.]

JIM: I'm pretty cynical right now. [Anne offers plans to meet in the coming days]


JIM: You know, it's fucked up, more than anything else ...You heard Debbie, and you liked her, and she hates herself, and you're likable, and you hate yourself. And ... I was talking to [Sean] Tejaratchi earlier tonight, before I even picked you up, and he asked me why did I think people like Debbie and you were attracted to me, and I couldn't say why. And he says he thinks it's because these are people who feel disgusting and nobody understands them, and I accept them. It's typical Tej.

ANNE: Do you think that's the truth?

JIM: Yeah, I think so.

ANNE: [unintelligible] You should be a motivational speaker or something....You're a little shepherd.

JIM: Oh, Christ.

ANNE: You are! You're a protector. You're a shepherd of the mentally ill.

JIM: Yeah, they come to me.

ANNE: Yeah! It's true, though.

[LATER IN CONVERSATION, referring to Anne's disruption of the Radical Women's meeting, in which she was thrown out for shouting, "Let's Hear it For Violence Toward Women!"]

JIM: When you think back to the Radical Women's meeting and then the messages I get today, Jesus Christ! The only reason I ragged on—well, I guess I ragged on them beforehand—the reason I don't like people like that is that they start shit like up in Bellingham ... accomplish nothing, but—

ANNE: I know, and that's why, like, I was just doing it to be outrageous, you know, I just go as extreme as possible. You know I don't believe this shit, I was like writing out on the little bulletin board, the public forum there, and everybody, like, responded to me, "Oh, my God!" All these arrows pointing to what I wrote. You know, my responses! You should see the way that I wrote it. I was like, all the feminists today, they're weak, we need to get strong, get knives, and guns, and blahblahblah and all this stuff. And nobody responded positively to it at all. So I thought it would be kind of funny that I got all this reaction. That was it. It wasn't like I was trying to make a statement or something. You know I don't believe in that! Those are big people's problems!

JIM: No, I think the message—the way you were talking last night about how you really liked your psychology professor, I think on some level you do believe in that shit. And I guess it's like last night you were saying the redneck stuff was a joke, but you do believe. I mean, there was something underlying that. I took a Xanax earlier tonight, I can barely put a sentence together.

ANNE: Well, there was some truth to when you called me spoiled, too.

Thursday, November 08, 2012

“It takes no compromise to give people their rights...it takes no money to respect the individual. It takes no political deal to give people freedom. It takes no survey to remove repression.”
-Harvey Milk

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

US Indie Rock

A few years back I made a video for the band Broken Social Scene. They've been my favourite band for a few years now. I randomly met their manager and offered to make a video for the band as an example of my work. He was cool and said if I do he’d pass it onto the band. I wanted to make something fast and cheap mainly cause I didn't have any money and wanted get into film making again since I’d been doing nothing film wise for over a year.

I became friends with Yoel (the boy in the video) after he kept coming by this music store I worked at buying great albums. We got talking and I started recommending stuff. After a while I talked about my idea for the video. Soon after he began dating Georgie (the girl in the video) so they became my actors. The video was shot with two friends over a couple of months.

Cocaine Skin from Lux on Vimeo.
“I would prefer that the music is heartfelt, and I don't care if it sounds like shit or not..."
- Lou Barlow

Before making the video I was looking back at a lot of early 90s US indie rock videos. I got to thinking: if they were made today they’d probably be made on a cheap digital camera and edited on iMovie or something, that’s how I made my video anyway.

Those videos of the early 90s were always lo-fi. They looked like they’d been made by the bands themselves with their parent’s VHS camcorder, shot without a budget or much of a concept, always naïve, messy, unpolished and fuckin awesome. I love the awkward camera shy band, the bad trippy camera effects, the stupid costumes and the clunky edits

Today the music video has become this beautiful art form but as much I love the likes of Chris Cunningham and Michel Gondry’s genius concepts and their perfect synthesis of sound and vision, nothing gives me a bigger thrill than the seeing those two kids kiss then stage dive in Sonic Youth’s Dirty Boots video.

I guess what makes these video even more precious to me is you gotta remember these videos were around in a time before You Tube. A time where if you didn't record the show that Nirvana were performing on or you missed the highlights from a festival that was broadcast at 3am and your friend didn't tape it either, it’s gone. You were never gonna see that performance again.

I don’t know any indie fan that didn't have a music video compilation tape.
I’d always have my music videotape to hand. You’d never know when you might be channel hopping and suddenly catch a video by a cool band. Then it’s the frantic struggle to get the tape outta the sleeve - into the video and hit record. Usually at that point fear would strike when I began to wonder "did I fast forward to the end of whatever it was I was last watching? Was I wiping over other good stuff on the tape?"
Just another hazard of the era.

My top 6 indie rock videos

Pavement - Gold Soundz
Gold Soundz is my favourite indie rock song of all time. The video has maybe the most ridiculous concept I've ever seen in a music video. I don’t know what to say about this video. How did they pitch this? I think a You Tube commenter said it best with “I don't understand fully why this video is so great, it just is.”

Superchunk – Throwing Things
This song rocks. I love the image of the band rockin out on their lawn in quiet suburbia. This is a great example of bad camera effects of the time and how I remember so many indie performances looking at the time.

Dinosaur Jr – Freak Scene
Dino Jr’s were always so cool. It never looked like they ever bothered with concepts for their videos. It always just seemed like they rounded up a bunch of random junk found in their closet, shot a bunch of stuff fooling around with friends, then randomly edited it together.

Smashing Pumpkins – Siva
This video captures the darker goth imagery that was around with the heavier grunge bands in scene at the time.
Smashing Pumpkins were a big deal for me growing up. They had just as big an effect on me as Nirvana did. By the time of ‘Siamese Dream’ I was totally obsessed, buying every single on every format for the b-sides and every magazine they featured in. It reached a point where my friends in high school got so pissed off with my love for them they pulled me aside one day and said ‘ya know Steve if we didn't know any better we’d think you like Smashing fuckin Pumpkins more than you like Nirvana and that’s just wrong!’ This being high school, a time when things like personal taste and preference really didn’t really wash.

Yo La Tengo – Sugarcube
This video pre-dates Richard Linklater’s ‘The School of Rock’ by a few years. It features the amazing David Cross, a photo of Lou Reed with big hair, a reading from a Rush album and mocks corporate rock throughout. Also the scene where Cross walks into the class room and hangs his leather chest strap on the back of the chair makes me laugh every time.

Sonic Youth – Dirty Boots
I fuckin heart this video so much.
As a kid I think every boy I knew dreamt of going to a show seeing some girl in a cool band tee, get talking and fall in love before the night was out. When I was 16 after a Fugazi show I saw some cute girl crying cause she lost her shoe in the mosh pit. A few minutes later I found her shoe dumped near the corner of the stage. I returned it to her and she was so overjoyed and gave me a hug. We got talking about the show and instantly bonded cause I too had got torn apart in the mosh pit that night. I thought I was a total bad-ass since I handled myself in the pit at a Green Day concert the week before. Tonight I got completely annihilated within the first 30 seconds of the show – they opened with ‘Facet Squared’ that night. This moment shared was quickly ruined when my friends found me talking to a girl - the same Nirvana fascists. They came over and said “we’re leaving right now, we’re not waiting around so if you want a lift home move!” Looking back I so should’ve hung back with the girl and talked some more but I was young, stupid and didn’t like the idea of trying to get home alone so I just sheepishly said bye and left *sigh*

History Lesson - Part II

Aisha and I taken outside an Elliot Smith show in 2000

I look back with such fondness and nostalgia for this era. All the bands featured here bring back such strong memories of being a teenager and in my early 20s. The time when I first began discovering bands and going to shows. When each new band and great album you found blew your mind and was like nothing you’d ever heard before. Everything was so new, pure and exciting. Looking back I don’t think I was ever happier than I was then. That amazing time in your life when you’re young, fall in love for the first time and have this new soundtrack to your life.

Monday, November 05, 2012

"There's nothing to say off camera"

Amazing feature on Truth or Dare
How Madonna’s Documentary Changed the Next 20 Years

Friday, November 02, 2012

The girl in the Slayer jacket

The girl in the Slayer jacket
Gave me my first kiss
When I was in the seventh grade
She used to smoke
Weed with my older sister
In the woods behind the arcade
The woods behind the arcade
She had thick skin
But if you cut her
The wound
Would bleed forever
She would bleed forever
She would bleed forever
She hung herself
From an overpass
Down in McLean
Where the old trees loom
(her parents tried to sue Slayer they blamed her)
Her parents
Tried to sue Slayer
They blamed her boyfriend and PCP
But the truth is her eyes
Had been dead since she was five
She just hadn't disposed of her body
- JR Hayes