Monday, November 14, 2005

Watching TV last night I came across The Wizard of Oz, which was playing on TBS.

I remember back when I was a kid that The Wizard of Oz only came on once a year, and it was sort of a big deal. One year - the first I remember, actually - my mom, my dad, my brother and I were at Sears on some family errand, buying an appliance or something similar. And the Wizard of Oz was starting soon but we weren't finished with our errand so our mom started telling me and my brother the story of the movie, so that when we got home we'd be caught up to speed. We got home and parked ourselves (my brother and I) in front of the TV on the shag carpet, chins in hands, elbows on the carpet, in that way only little kids watching TV sit, and watched it. I don't remember watching much of the movie then, just mainly being at Sears with my family beforehand, and my mom beginning to tell us the story. Or maybe it was on TV at Sears and she told us what we were missing as we drove home, between TVs, between Sears and the house. Either way.

And so today The Wizard of Oz is still kind of a big signpost for me, an important thing. Same with the Grinch (which, coincidentally, was also on last night). I wonder if this is true for others of my rough age. And I wonder if it will remain true as the 2000s continue to tick far-too-quickly on by (what's weirder than being 26: it being 2006). Similarly, I wonder if, 50 years from now, we'll still be listening to Billie Holiday and Frank Sinatra in scarred-wood bars, all the old ephemera of the Thirties and Forties bars still intact and resonant. I'd like to think so; I'd like to think that that music and time period are somehow special - and they must be: otherwise why should I, who lived nowhere near those decades, still feel some weird nostalgia when those tunes come on the juke at a bar and still feel some weird affinity for bars and places that feel like they existed then: McHale's Tavern, the tile bars, Peter Luger's, and so on and so forth.

"With the thoughts that I'd be thinking, I could be another Lincoln, if I only had a brain."

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

New York is full of lunatics. From the random person moaning/screaming in the subway to the guy who, when I pass him, mutters "I'm the best motherfucker there is," this city is really just one big raisin parade.

Still, though, I love it. New York will stress you the fuck out and also lift you up to the highest heights. The suburbs, however, in which I was this past weekend, will do neither. The suburbs are like tepid bathwater. Just kind of eh.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Anyone who's looking for something good to read should seek out (and it might involve some seeking) N+1 magazine, which is a newish literary/general interest magazine/journal published by some people out here in Brooklyn. It was featured in the Times Magazine several weeks back along with the Believer, which if you'll just direct your eyes to the right on this page, you'll see the link for. The Believer is of course fantastic, though lately it's been getting a bit extra-esoteric - to its detriment, I think. N+1, on the other hand, is still clever and entertaining and enlightening while maintaining its tie to reality and things that matter out in the real world, like dating, Radiohead, and independent film. Also probably more, but I'm not done with the issue yet. Their website is: I don't know how to do hyperlinks, or I would.