Archive for the ‘Events’ category

Happy Turkey Day

November 28, 2008

or tofurkey for my veggie friends.

Had a big dinner earlier, it’s 2am and Im still stuffed.

But Im still about half ready to make me a turkey-leftover and tomato and mayo sandwich.

gobble gobble, bitches.

Ive had plenty to whine about these past few weeks, but i didnt today.  Lets all take a day off from bitching and reflect on what we’re thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Hope, personified

November 5, 2008

He won.

amazing. 

was at a friends place watching the television coverage until about 12:30am last night.  They had a bunch of people over.  Champagne bottles popped open, everyone screaming.  A few of them decided to head out into the city to take part in the street-side celebrations that were springing up everywhere.
I stayed home.

What’s wrong with you? they asked. Secret McCain fan?

They didnt get it.  They arent from the States, and for them, this was just a celebration. This was a lot more for me. I was just as happy as they were, maybe more so, but in a different way. It was pretty emotional for me… I just remembered watching the last two elections, and the disappointment I felt…and all the hard times we went through these last 8 years, with September 11th and the subsequent gloom and widespread anti-arab sentiment, and the wars that claimed the lives of friends or friends of friends, and the economic situation which caused many of my friends to lose their jobs and/or all their savings, and having to listen to the radio each morning to see if I still had a job that day…even if Obama hasn’t officially done anything as president yet, he’s already imbued me and countless others with a profound sense of hope that better times are ahead, and confidence in the belief that he has the wisdom, compassion, and courage to pursue ideals that appeal to the common man.  For this alone, I am grateful. His speech was inspirational…I couldnt control the shivers, and some point, the tears.

A new journey begins…where will it take us?  Where will we take ourselves?

I hope to have the courage to project this new-found sense of confidence and empowerment into something worthwhile in my life, and in the lives of others.

best,
Z

Election Day Jitters

November 4, 2008

I can’t believe today is the day! I recall the last two election days with horror, compounded by the morose, cold numbness one feels while watching the grim reality of their future materialize slowly in front of them, which is what I experienced watching the election results in real-time on TV in 2000 and 2004.  In 2004, I have to admit, I was deeply ashamed to be an American; I could not fathom reelecting GWB and the vote of confidence and approval his reelection signified…to be part of that conglomerate left me with a feeling of indignance that proved difficult to cleanse.

I won’t harp on the choices others have made in the past or will be making today.  I just hope that everyone who cares about the future of this nation and has the privilege of being a part of it gets off their ass, heads to the polls, and votes for the candidate they honestly believe will do America best.

Hoping to leave work a little early to avoid what I expect to be massive lines at my voting site.  In case it is packed, I have a magazine and an election-day playlist on my iPod to keep me going.  Tired as I am right now, nothing is gonna stop me from “Barack[ing] the Vote”, as the young kids are saying these days.

Good luck America!

from Lincoln to Obama, a long road traveled

October 24, 2008

Pretty interesting nytimes piece, highlighting the presidential candidates the newspaper has endorsed since the 1860 election where Abraham Lincoln was elected, up to now.  This follows it’s recent public endorsement of Barack Obama, which was great, but not good enough to make me forget that it trivialized Obama during the primaries when it officially endorsed Hillary Clinton as the more capable candidate [still pissed about that].

Amazing that the first endorsement, for Lincoln, was for a candidate whose presidency would be focused mainly on the civil war and the divisive issue of the enslavement of Africans….and then you scroll down and see an endorsement for Barack Obama, a proud man of (recent ancestral) African descent.  Imagine how 19th century Americans would have reacted if you told them there would be a black president one day!  Hell, imagine if you did it 50 years ago, and the reaction probably wouldn’t be as different as we may like to think.

But we’re ready now.  We as a people have come a long way, and we have to continually make bold decisions in favor of change for the better, rather than seek out the short-term comfort of complacency. 

I hope you all agree, and that you show it on election day by getting off your asses and voting this Election Day.  It’s just around the corner! History in the making, folks.  Be a part of it.

A green gift for my new nephew

June 25, 2008

My new nephew, born Saturday.  I’m proud to say that he doesn’t resemble an alien as much as most newborns usually do.

But in a polluted world, he may come to resemble one.  He might breathe in too many exhaust fumes and his two eyes could merge into one big eye in the middle of his forehead.  I think that happened to some kid in Azerbaijan last year, or some other place youve never heard of.  A cyclops baby would have a hard life.  What if he needed glasses? He’d have to strap a monocle to his head.  I dont think his insurance would cover that.  And what if he walks by a cute girl and winks at her? He’d walk into the pole he didn’t see while his eye was closed.  He would be laughed at, mocked, driven to seclusion, and write a book no one would read.

                                                Im keeping an eye on my nephew’s future.

Seriously though, I can’t help but think of him now while I read the news…I wonder what the world is gonna be like for him when is an adult.  It scares me a little. But then I remember that the world he will live in will be the world that WE have created for him, the world that we are creating right now.  What more motivation can we ask for in order to start taking care of our planet…and of each other?

I’ll offer a tip for those of you who need help getting the ball rolling: consume less.  It’s so freaking easy to do.  Buy a sturdy water bottle that you can refill with your own filtered water. That simple task can save you hundreds of dollars a year by avoiding bottled water costs; eliminates the need to dispose of the bottles; decreases the demand for goods in plastic bottles which in turn saves millions of barrels of oil that are used to make all that plastic, increasing the supply and driving down costs so you also save at the pump; decreases our consumption of declining fresh water resources (at least in some cases, because many brands of bottled water get their product from the same sources at public tap water); and makes our world a lot cleaner. 

Of course my brother would not want you to read this… he keeps telling me about the yuppies who come into his store and buy bottles of Fiji water for $4 a pop.  You guys are making him a rich dude. 

But the fact is, in effect,  the real cost is much greater.  I hope it’s worth it to you.

INTERNATIONAL PILLOW FIGHT — NYC!!!

March 24, 2008

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The good thing about boredom is that it inspires people to think of amazing ways to conquer it, and some of those ways are so cool that they catch on and become formidable weapons in the anti-boredom crusade that all the masses can employ and enjoy.  Example No. 1: this blog.  Example No. 2: International Pillow Fight Day.  Legend has it that one day, long ago, two young Canadians were bummed and bored because there were no hockey games on and the Cavs had just blew out the Raptors and the Blue Jays were well on their way to another third place finish in the AL East again, and so they decided that people needed to get together and do fun stuff more often, and just like that, Pillow Fight Day was created and spread like wildfire.  OK it may not have happened exactly like that, but it is as reasonable an explanation as any… you truth-seekers out there can just click the link above for the real story.  Anyway, I heard about it last minute, and at first I thought it’d be stupid, but then I got off my high-horse and realized it could be good fun. 

 And it was, God it was.  I got off the train at Union Square on Saturday and could see the feathers falling through the open grates on the subway ceiling…when I got out onto the streets the feathers were flying everywhere.  The crown of pillow gladiators was tightly packed and amazingly diverse: young and old [ok, more young], and it was true to it’s international creed, as evidenced by the different  languages in which people were shrieking and cursing….I vaguely remember how to say “I’m gonna rip your head off with my Sponge Bob pillow you filthy whore!” in German.   It was great because although navigating was difficult in the heart of the throng, nobody was really trying to hurt anyone else.  Most people were hitting people they knew hard but stuck to playful hits with strangers.  I did see a pair of broken glasses on the floor, but whoever brought those to a pillow fight wasn’t that bright anyway.  There were also a few pillow wielding psychos, of course, but they gravitated to each other seeking real competition amongst their fellow loose-canons.

Seeking a thrill of my own, I jumped into a heated battle with one of the crazies, and after fighting him off, the jam packed crowd seemed to disperse slightly around me…and when I turned around, I noticed a huge Ruben Studdard-on-crack lookin mothafucka lumbering towards me with a giant down sack in his hand.  As if in slow motion, he raised his pillow high in the air, preparing to bash my head in.  But I was one step ahead.  As he lowered his pillow toward me, I unleashed a mighty two-handed uppercut with my pillow that caught his sack by the tail, near his hands, sending his weapon into the air.  In the same motion, I swung my pillow around my head and clocked him in the face, thrusting him back to drown in the sea of bodies that would engulf him.  I was about to grab his shirt and pull him back to get him in position for me to unleash my patented roundhouse kick, but I decided to be merciful. Triumphant, I turned to walk back to my camera wielding compadre, only to be pummeled from the side by a gang of Japanese chicks.  That was the end of my adventure.

I took this short video below from the NYC fight..much more on youtube.

img_0191.jpgThis chick decided to fight the power by attacking a coach bus..and the Asian lady who’s trying to learn English.

img_0179.jpg this poor sap got clobbered

Aside from the fact that it really gets the blood flowin and blows off steam,  I really loved the concept behind the event: reclaiming public space.  People don’t use the public space that is provided nearly as much as they should or could, and most do so only when their is some sponsored event they can mooch off of.  Public means it’s ours.  We should be using it more often to do fun stuff, even it’s throwing around a football, having a picnic,  getting a tan or reading a book or…whatever. Something.  It doesn’t take a ton of organization, just a little motivation.  Kudos to those two Canadian dudes for reminding us of that.

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My BACK-FROM-HIBERNATION Top TEN List

February 26, 2008

Sorry loyal patrons [which last time I counted meant..no one]. I havent posted anything in a while, it’s been a busy winter. I’ll give you a top-ten rundown of blog-worthy items that I wouldve written about if I wasn’t busy being a lazy bastard, in random order:

1. I went to Montreal in October with mon cheri..what a great city. Everyone is really laid back, there’s anactive night life, very scenic…of course I went before the usual 50 feet of snow fell, but whatever. Plus the Quebecois accent is really cool. One question: why do they smother their fries with that thick nasty gravy??? Even my turkey sandwich was covered in that mess. I think they call it poutine. I call it retarded. Freaking Amazon tribes that live in trees know that you eat fries with ketchup. One minus for an otherwise stellar town.

montreal-building.jpeg                                                   amazing building near McGill Universitymontreal-trees.jpeg                                                         the trees in late fall were gorgeousmontreal-sign.jpeg                                                                 this place was pretty empty..I wonder why? I know plenty of biker lesbians with short hair. 

montreal-fries.jpg                                                      blaaaaah

2. I had only the second fun new year’s eve of my life, hanging out with some frenchies: first pregaming at M&V’s pad [the red house], then the historic Lenox Lounge in Harlem for a Jazz jam session, then central park for a smaller but just as impressive [and way less crowded] fireworks presentation. Then back to the red house to get trashed. Good times.

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3. Movies/Netflix — don’t remember everything I saw but here goes:

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly was an interesting film about a dude who suffers a stroke and tries to find meaning in his life despite being 99% paralyzed…it’s slow, but no snoozer.

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Across the Universe was only mildly entertaining as the movie-musical that bring The Beatles songs to life..I love the beatles but c’mon, the lyrics are cheesy and making a movie based on them is pretty lame…good acting, but this one was doomed from the start.

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NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN— holy crap this movie is awesome and deserves all the acclaim. Tommy Lee Jones and the psycho Euro guy were straight up BADASS.

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Ugly Betty, Season 1: I tried hard to like it cuz the main chick is from Queens, but borough-based allegiances only go so far. The writing and acting is weaK; it tries way too hard to be diabolical and the punchlines are too obvious. Plus the show is based on the chick being butt ugly while working with supermodels, when its obvious that she’s not even too bad lookin..they just give her huge braces and dress her like a dork. Put some Sean Jean velour on her, get her hair did by a Dominicana, and strap on some clear braces, and I know plenty of dudes that would tap that. Anyway, the show is boring.

ugly-betty-1.jpg     <see?>                                                               ugly-betty-2.jpg

Rome, Season 2: I just finished season 2 and this is one awesome show. It’s like No Country for Old Men meets Braveheart. Violent but not pointlessly, with plenty of suspense. But damn it is gory. Me likey.

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Deadwood: Another BADASS WESTERN theme done great. I’m a few episodes into season 1 and this shit is cold hearted drama. I read negative reviews from ppl who didnt like the show because, “OMG, why do they have to use such foul langauge?” or “there is so much violence, I couldn’t watch this with my kids.” Uhh, NO SHIT dumbass. This is the Wild West in the 1800s, gold miners clawing through Native American territories, outside the realm of the law, trying to make some change by mining in mountains for gold theyve heard of but never seen. This isn’t little house on the prairie, and if I was digging all day and didnt find any gold, Id get wasted, curse someone out, and go to the whorehouse for a little consolation too. It’s called being realistic. Put the kids to bed, grow some stones and enjoy the damn show. Oh, and if you haven’t noticed the trend, HBO produces some kick-ass TV shows.                                                                 deadwood.jpg

Next on my list of shows to watch on Netflix: I heard Dexter wasnt all that great but I’m curious so I think I’ll give it a shot [plus the main role is played by the guy from 6 feet under, which was an amazing show]. Plus it’s a Showtime production, and Weeds was so good that I’m hoping it meets the standard. I also got into watching Law and Order SVU, which is great because every show is so freaking suspenseful and well crafted, and you can watch it in any order because their is so little character development that you won’t ever be confused..each episode is completely dedicated to solving the latest crime mystery. I love no-commitment entertainment [Netflix related and, apparently, otherwise]. Btw…the Asian psychologist guy on SVU is a total closet case. Btw#2…How the hell does Ice-T [IceD-T?] have a job? He is a ridiculously bad actor. I think the producers mustve realized that he actually sucked to the point that he unwittingly provides comic relief, with his wannabe badass one-liners. That they partnered him with the other weird guy who wears sunglasses all the time only enhances the funny-by-accident theme. Those producers are clever ones.

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4. WTF is up with those damn selfish lazy writers! I miss watching The Office and 30 Rock! SEE, I don’t watch TV for years and then I commit to watching those shows, and then they stop writing midseason. This is why I’m so emotionally screwed up! And the strike’s been over forever now and still no new episodes till April? They knew it was gonna get resolved eventually, so couldnt they just keep writing and hand over the scripts when this thing got resolved? The unreliability of TV is reason No. 346 why NETFLIX is awesome.

5. I went to DR to visit my friend who lives there as a Peace Corps volunteer. I stayed in her camp in Moca, which was gheTTo but quaint and friendly, and we traveled all over, thru Santo Domingo and into the beaches of Bayahibe. I’m not into the resort thing or hanging with crazy spoiled underage spring-breakers intent on winning the race to cirrhosis; it was cool to meet the locals and live in their shoes for a short while. The local food wasn’t anything to write home about, but beware of TOSTONES, which are fried carB-Bombs that taste best covered in salt and ketchup. Dangerous stuff.

Bayahibe Sunset                  Bayahibe by night

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6. 3 amazing frenchies in my life have fallen victim to ridiculous American visa laws and have to move back to Europe. I am thinking about following them out of spite for America. Oui, c’est vrai! My next post might be in French.  Or English with the occasional french curse word. That option is most likely. Merde!

7. THE GIANTS WON! THE GIANTS WON! THE BEST GAME IN THE HISTORY OF SPORTS! TYREE MAKES THE CATCH! MANNING AVOIDS THE SACK! BURRESS PUTS THE G-MEN AHEAD…FOR GOOD! 18 AND 1 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

tyree.jpeg game-score.jpeg                                                                                  I took a picture of the TV I saw the game on in the Hard Rock Cafe in Santo Domingo

Perhaps my proudest day to be a New Yorker ever.

8. NBA trades galore!! Holy Crap! SHAQ, KIDD, MARION, GASOL!!?? ARE YOU KIDDING ME??? Why couldnt the Knicks package their crap players in a deal? [oh yeah, because none of their awful contracts are expiring this year]. If Kobe’s pinky holds up, he gets his first championship sans the newly dubbed “Big Cactus” — believe it. That squad is nasty.

9. Mets + Johan Santana + determination after a terrible ’07 collapse = championship. Write that shit down, biatch [wow I missed saying that word].

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10. YES – WE – CAN! O-FUCKING-BAMA for president. BILLARY should be one of the whores that the angry gold-miners dig out every night in the saloon in Deadwood. I don’t mean that in a derogatory/misogynistic way…I’m just taking a page out of her campaign strategy book by thinking of anything I can say to make her look bad.obama.jpg

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Oh, and, I’m writing all this at work, so yeah, I’m still at the same job and thus have tons of free time to ruminate. Lucky y’all!