Spelling aside, this note from a tenth grader seems banal, intense, and cliche enough to be easily recycle-able. The next time you pine, just cut and paste from this fellow's lament: From an occasional series on what my students are actually writing when their supposed to be taking lecture notes.
There seems to be no limit to graffiti creativity. Eyebeam / Graffiti Research Lab Open City show closes next week. Hurry - go! It's in Chelsea (NYC) 540 W 21st Street. My personal faves from the show: (1) Rolling ink-jet, used to vandalize entire quarter mile stretches of highway, visible from the air. The array of Krylon spray paint cans becomes a 24 inch wide programmable printer head.
(2)Tools of a crew that takes metal street signage back to a shop where they weld, melt, and twist it, later re-installing the sign back in the original location. They disquise themselves in reflective vests and other worker garb. Visible here: tools used for removing the signage, including an aerosol can for freezing the bolts before shearing them off .
(3) The opposite of defacing: a Berlin vandal turns samaritan, using a squeegee to clean the windshield of trains as they wait for the light.
From my home, Orange House crew made it into the show. Detroit represent!
It's striking how reluctant the Germans are to seem nationalistic Here some engineering students from Germany cheer their team in Albuqurque, waving a German flag and a tiny flag of the host country! It was a contest to build a space elevator prototype. ( Frame grab image from WGBH / Nova )
Rolling around: the shadow of a screw, stuck up inside a fluorescent lightshade. Fighting behind me: a dad yelling REALLY mean stuff at his 8 year old. Pretending to study the ceiling: (desperately) me, trying to disappear into the AIR song on my MP3 player. Mutually oblivious: two men, in facing seats, bent to their reading, men who not only share a demographic (25-35 year old, white, NYorker subscribers), and a subway car (4th car on the Brooklyn bound F), but are reading the same damn Jonathan Lethem story. Should I tap them on the shoulder? What would I say? Pointless.
Dream -- the bottle cap throwers, I point, mob forms, one caught, one evades unsteerable mob. I pursue to country on foot, friend drives me back in fake (fiberglass kit) Maserati with lone front seat. says passengers must cling to skinny waterbed in back.
UPDATE: Denise is running from the Red Army too . . . or joining them!
Just in case you are in New York and want to do a walking tour of Kerouac, Ginsberg, et al, here's a map (click larger) showing the 1950s New York Beat Hangouts near Tompkins Square, East Village / Alphabet City
a. Hudson's Army-Navy Store h. Ratner's i. Original Five Spot b. St. Mark's Church j. Rapport's c. Le Metro k. Deux Megots, Paradox Ukrainian National d. Home Bar 1. Stanley's Bar e. The Dom m. Old Stanley's p. f. Stewart's n. Engage Coffeehouse q. g. McSorley's Old Ale House o. Annex Bar r. 3. Avant-garde cultural sites and the landscape of the 1950's.
From "Selling the Lower East Side" by Christopher Mele, p.141
Map constructed by Neil Wieloch. Source: Sukenick 1987•
And here are home movies the Beats took of each other in the summer of 1959
Laundry spun really out of control. Did nuttin for 2 weekends previous. Got all kinds of compliments for wearing "cool clothes" to school as I ran out of teacher threads. Now I'm rolling 42 pounds up the street.
The 2002 paperback feed, sits on a tiny shelf at the library categorized as Teen – Science Fiction”, a sub-genre of a sub-genre. The
book’s future world is a brave new utiopia of easy-going shopping. The
interesting feature is that everyone has chat and Google available in
their head 24-7 by a brain-implanted Wi-Fi chip. Feed is a
teen love story, with the main character continually surprised by the
new emotions he feels when he is around a weird girl he meets at a
snackbar on the moon. She was homeschooled and knows how to knit as
well as fire an anti-aircraft gun [the survivalist subtext there is
never explicitly explored].
There are weird future drugs that kids do, some of them electronic,
rather than molecular, although it is a nice touch that even in 2100,
the kids still try to break into the lock to get booze from the hotel
Cracks in the shiny future heaven are first suggested to the young
couple when at a moon rave these two get hacked by a culture jammer.
The Trojan Horse that then infects their brain chips lands the hacker
in Guantanamo Bay but inspires the two teens to become merry
pranksters, exploring the contradictions of their utopia.
I enjoyed the Feed's invented slang (null, unit, et al), the
naïve love story, the speculation about what search engines have
already done to us in 2007. There are lovely scenes that would
translate well to film, such as parties where a third of the guests are
staring off into space, group-watching a banal TNT re-run. The ability
to privately chat someone, even though you are all sitting in a group,
ostensibly having an audible conversation, is a great narrative
invention, creating Dangerous Liasons type layers of gossip and
alliances, right under the nose of the person you’re talking about.
The cruelness of teens is depicted but the overall tone is sweet,
I liked Feed a lot and recommend it. It’s a VERY easy, very
satisfying thing to consume, not unlike eating a small bag of Doritos.
The author is a professor at Vermont College. The book has a built-in
Reader’s Guide on the last few pages.