Sunday, November 29, 2009

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving

Sometimes life feels so difficult and your work load seems endless but then someone gives you a Korean monkey seaweed mango gelatin snack and everything becomes a little less stressful.



Speak easy,
Neil

Sunday, November 22, 2009

long exposure

Things I don't understand...
1) gambling
2) sports
3) betting on sporting events
4) the Saw movie franchise
5) kristen stewart's movie career
6) angler fish
7) antiperspirant
8) the science behind basically everything Thomas Edison ever invented
9) the crusades
10) women

Here are some pictures I took while we were waiting on the top of a mountain for a meteor shower. The mountain took about half an hour to climb and it was a cold and fairly miserable excursion. The sky was cloudy and we ended up being seven hours for the event anyway.








Lev wouldn't let me use my flash because he was doing long exposure photography so I had to get creative.

Speak easy,
Neil

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Mr. Shrike dictates...

"Art is a way out. Do not let life overwhelm you. When the old paths are choked with the debris of failure, look for never and fresher paths. Art is just such a path. Art is distilled from suffering. As Mr. Polnikoff exclaimed through his fine Russian beard, when, at the ago of eighty-six, he gave up his business to learn Chinese, 'We are, as yet, only at the beginning...'. Art is one of life's richest offerings."

Speak easy,
Neil

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Slight Rebellion off Madison



I saw this for the first time today. It is the only official illustration of Holden Caulfield, printed in Collier Magazine in the 1945 Christmas Issue. Apparently JD Salinger had started writing what would end up being The Catcher in the Rye some 10 years before the books official publication.

Shopping for sweaters and bellow-cameras on eBay.

Yesterday was my one year blog anniversary!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Boy Detectives

I was accepted into the study abroad program I applied for a few weeks ago. If I get all of my financial aid papers in on time I could be studying at the University of Nottingham as soon as January 25th 2010. Pretty exciting new. I am, however, hardwired in such a way that I am constantly anticipating for the other foot to drop. In short, I am almost always anxious that my plans will hit a bump. It is not a great way to live but it does force me to plan alternative routes.

Just finished The Curious Incident of the Dead Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon and just started The Boy Detective Fails by Joe Meno. The former was an interesting read but I don't think it had the deep insight I was anticipating. An easy read and provides an interesting look into the inner workings of the mind of a British teenager with autism. Both books deal with boy detectives, although the latter delves more into the fantastical mystique, veering closer to likes of The Hardy Boys and Johnny Quest. I'm enjoying it so far but it has not proven to be as personal as Hairstyles of the Damned, the only other Joe Meno book I've ever read.

This is a t-shirt design I am working on right now. Penny farthing gentleman hedgehog.


Speak easy,
Neil

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Quand j’├ętais une jeune fille...

I went to go see the movie A Serious Man last night all by myself. For the last few days I have been pretty sick (yep, sick again and it's not even really winter yet) and it was nice to just get out of the dorm. The movie was really funny and I think it helped that the old people sitting next to me and the old people sitting behind me kept laughing during basically every scene throughout the entire movie. Even though I live in a college town I swear that the age of the average movie-goer for that specific screening was at least 50. I learned that old people do not think it is at all funny when young teenage boys excessively swear. Here's the trailer for anyone that doesn't know what movie I'm talking about.


It takes place in the 60's too, which was nice for me because all I've been doing is watching Mad Men so I went in with a predisposed and fresh understanding of the time period. Mad Men is really good too, I would definitely recommend it for anyone that likes 1) good television, 2) sexual harassment and misogyny in the workplace, or 3) advertising.

I have about 40 pages of my novel thrown together at the moment and have a few titles floating through my head. Not sure when I'll be finished because most of it comes out while I am procrastinating so I can't really gauge how much time I will be spending on it per week. Some titles I have considered which are references to things in the text or have some sort of symbolic importance...

- The Leak
- Freeze Thy Young Blood*
- Hollow Bones of Angels
- Matroyshka**
- The Rusted Obelisk
- Water Wings

*Quote from Hamlet that I really like.
**Layered Russian doll

Let me know if any pop out as a specifically good title.

Back to my French paper. My assignment is to write a composition from the perspective of a little girl. It's more fun than I thought it would be.

Speak easy,
Neil

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

globe trotting



One of Lev's stole this snow globe from a hippy run Halloween party last weekend. It ended up in our room but we will try our darnedest to get it back to its rightful owner at some point. The inscription says: "Winter Solitude: In the world of one color, the sound of wind." Pretty deep stuff. They look really cool if you shake it up, put your eye up to the glass, and wave it in the direction of a light source (lamp, street light, computer screen).

Got my CIS study abroad application in. Now I just need to wait around to see if I got in.

Speak easy,
Neil

Sunday, November 1, 2009

There ain't no sky above

Here are two passages from James Baldwin's Go Tell It On The Mountain, a book I am reading for my English 300 class. It's getting really good but I can't finish it right now because I've got other work to do for other classes.

_________

"Little-bit - d'you love me?"
And she wondered how he could doubt it. She thought how infirm she must be not to have been able to make him know; and she raised her eyes to his, and she said the only thing she could say:
"I wish to God I may die if I don't love you. There ain't no sky above us if I don't love you."
_________

Babies, bawling, fatherless, for bread, and girls in the gutters, sick with sin, and young men bleeding in the frosty fields.
_________

I think I know why USPS employees "go postal". For the past week I have been going to the post office a lot because I have been sending out all my study abroad stuff. There seems to usually only be one guy manning the front counter and he is almost always really irritable. I do not blame him though because he constantly faces long lines of clueless people who have no idea what they are doing. Not only that but have you ever looked behind the counter. It's just a huge chaotic mess of envelopes and boxes and post it notes. Seems like highly irritating work. They briefly covered this topic on Seinfeld.



Here's another picture from Halloween, taken by my floor mate Connie. Lev dressed up as Gunther, a Swedish model turned pop-sensation who is responsible for the horribly awkward song Ding Ding Dong (not for the easily offended).

Speak easy,
Neil

P.S
Post your favorite songs that remind you of the winter. I am gearing myself up for Christmas carols and repeated listening of Matt Pond PA's beautiful rendition of Holiday Road.