CONVERSION NOTICE: This is one of 250+ blogs that originally appeared on MySpace. I’ve done my best to represent it with as much historical accuracy as possible, but there are limitations. Read about it in the FAQ.
Current Mood: frustrated
Before I get started, you may notice the new sock-rocking graphic above. I took a cue from the Reverend Horton Heat’s blog and realized that I could easily add an awesome header to my blog rather than settle for plain old text. I was looking for an excuse to play in Photoshop and to use the tweed texture I created years back. I thought I’d go for a Fender Bassman theme, but I took some liberties, and admittedly I lost steam near the end. Perhaps in the future I will spruce it up some more… or even occasionally rotate the graphics up there. I’m too lazy/busy to maintain my website these days, so this is my one chance to exercise my Photoshop muscles. So anyway, my point is that I have retired my blog’s previous (and original) title, “Soapboxing: Why did God curse me with this enormous intellect?” As of today, my blog is officially reborn as “This Charming Ben Rocks Your Socks.” I promise I will try to live up to that title.
CONVERSION NOTICE: Since you can’t see the aforementioned header graphic in place up top the way you would have on MySpace, I’ll just post it here below. Click it to see it full-sized.
The biggest news of late is that I heard from one of my last long-lost friends after 12+ years. My best friend in 8th grade was a guy named Brad. We really only became good friends that year, and then he moved to Australia the following summer. He visited once a year or two later, but after that we lost touch… and my Google and MySpace searches for him over the past years produced bupkis. Well he messaged me out of the blue the other day! I believe he is that last of a handful of long-losts that I’d hoped to reconnect with someday… I’m looking forward to hearing about what a decade of Aussie life has done to him.
I saw an unusual movie last week called “A Colt Is My Passport.” It’s a Japanese “Nikkatsu Action” flick that Colin brought me to. I guess this is a genre of stylized action that had its heyday in the late 50’s and early 60’s in Japan, covering topics like the Yakuza, hitmen, and general mayhem. Think “what Kill Bill was paying homage to.” The one we saw appeared heavily influenced by the Leone spaghetti westerns that were just coming out a few years before. It was all part of the “No Borders, No Limits” series at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. The series is over now, but I’d be interested in exploring more of these films in the future.
Do you recall my yearning for a very hard-to-find white Levi’s jean jacket? Or how about the general women’s hatred of white jeans on men (both Nick and Orlie have worn them on stage)? Well sweet vindication is ours this week as Levi’s Spring fashions have appeared on the front page of Levi’s website and what’s the theme? WHITEOUT! Guess what the hot color is this season. White jeans are all the rage, and a new white men’s jacket is available. I will be checking it out tomorrow and possibly putting this yearning to rest once and for all. See bitches, we’re just months/years ahead of fashion trends.
And speaking of white jean haters, my old Les Paul — which has been with me at nearly every show since the Summer of 2006, which took a glass to the face at Vertigo’s last year, and which has been admired by many — is going to a good home. The best possible home really, all things considered. Who else but Charlene, who so often expressed her approval by screaming “fuckin’ Les Paul!” at shows. Honestly, how could it end up with anyone else?
I have Dori to thank for recently including an image from MarriedToTheSea.com, a site that I had forgotten about. Basically they take old line art completely out of context and add quotes/context to them. And they get funnier once you’ve seen a few and kinda get the style a bit more. If you have the time while bored at work or whatev, I seriously recommend going through all of the archives. Holy shit, I can surf that site for hours and not stop laughing. For example:
I never thought I was claustrophobic. The other day, I learned I was wrong. I was in a very crowded elevator and we got stuck. It took a few seconds to dawn on me exactly what was happening, but when it did, I immediately felt trapped like a rat. I was in the back of the elevator, and I had to fight the urge to push my way to the front and go Ludo on the door and rip it open. It makes no sense… I could be in a moving elevator for 30 floors without batting an eyelash, but the second I knew we weren’t moving, I panicked. In the end, I did manage to keep my cool, but just barely. As the others in the elevator talked to the operator on the emergency phone and I heard they were dispatching an engineer… I started to imagine being stuck in a standing-room-only elevator with a half dozen other people… and I wanted to yack. Thankfully it did not come to that. This kind of nausea thing has happened to me more over the years. Is this a part of getting old…?
Did I mention I got new glasses? Me gusta! I guess I should probably have a picture to accompany this comment. I don’t.
Some great shows are coming up! Check my MySpace calendar… The Bad Plus, being one of the only jazz bands I can tolerate. R.E.M. who I’ve never seen live. The Black Angels who I’ve been looking forward to seeing too, and then Flight Of The Conchords which will undoubtedly be hilarious! So the question is: who else is going to these? Let me know!
I had a pretty good weekend. The weather around here was amazing! Hot, even. And that led to a great blanket of fog in my neighborhood earlier this evening. Getting to be out in the sun a bit was refreshing. I spent a fair amount of time with Shel, brunching yesterday at Savor, shopping in Noe and the Haight. Lunch and a Cafe Gratitude shake today. Both days forcing me to walk out and be in the sun. And I drank a fuckload of iced tea. Shel’s fault.
Last night, I went to Club Gossip for the first time in many months. It was alright, but the crowd there was a little weird. On the plus side, many friends were in attendance. But even so, there were just lots of creepy folks, and everyone seemed to be having a bad night. Though I did not see the pierced piggy guy. (A quick review has shown me that I failed to mention him in previous blogs… at New Wave City last time, there was this Buffalo-Bill-lookin’ guy on the dance floor slithering around, shirtless and tugging on his nipple rings. And he had a bull ring in his nose that he’d occasionally pull up to give himself a pigface for a while. He would just kind of slowly spin around as if to see if anyone had locked onto him and was interested in what he was doing. No one was.)
Dance clubs lately have been a mixed bag. On the one hand, it’s usually fulfilling to get out in a social situation, meet new people, and dance to some of my favorite music. On the other hand, the scene in the Bay Area is relatively small, and it’s near impossible to avoid running into the same people regularly. Sometimes this is a good thing… running into old friends, going somewhere everybody knows your name, etc. But just as often, you’re running into people you don’t want to see. Crashing bores, or your enemies, or your friends’ enemies. People you’re not supposed to acknowledge. People you’re supposed to pretend you don’t know. People you’re supposed to pretend you don’t have miles of dirt on. In this small scene, it’s all very incestuous and gossipy. I feel suffocated by it sometimes. It’s starting to ruin SF nightlife for me. Everyone knows everyone, everybody sees everything, and everything eventually reaches the ears you hoped it wouldn’t. “What’s done in the dark will be brought to the light.” We live in the information age. There are no secrets.
Finally, I continue to struggle with trying to figure out what the hell I want from a love life. Confused as always, trying to understand my patterns rather than blindly follow them. At the same time trying not to overthink things and miss out on living in the moment. Getting over and getting past. Nothing’s changed. Stop me if you think that you’ve heard this one before.
OK, that’s all for now kiddies. The unintentionally-Steven-Wright-worthy quote of the week comes once again from Jamie, in what I think is an unprecedented 2nd week in a row!
“I don’t even remember the last time I blacked out.”