Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Just Because ...

Somewhere in Austin, Texas @ SXSW: March 2007 (photos courtesy of me)

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She's a Carnival

Happy 51st Birthday to the ultimate punk priestess, Siouxsie Sioux. The former Banshees frontman is prepping to hit the European festival circuit this summer in support of her latest solo offering, Siouxsie. I had the chance to catch her tour opener in February and the lady looked fantastic. She still makes it all look easy. Looking 51 years young, m'dear.

Additional birthday wishes go out to Crowded House's Neil Finn, who also turns 51 today.

[Siouxsie image by Eric Nowels]

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I KNEW he was a total punk

So apparently New York Rangers left wing Sean Avery is interning at Vogue? So what, the dude had nothing better to do since losing to the Pittsburgh Penguins in the second round of the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs earlier this month? Are you freaking kidding me?

If this is a joke or some kind of clever publicity stunt, it's the lamest move EVER! But I suppose I should expect this from a punk like Avery, who acted like a complete tool during the opening series versus the New Jersey Devils. For those who were paying attention, remember the scuttlebutt between him and Devils goalie Martin Brodeur? In Game 3 in mid-April, Avery delivered some juvenile hand-and-stick-waving act to distract Brodeur; let us not forget the constant waving of his hands in Brodeur's face. Say what you want about Brodeur, but I wouldn't have shaken Avery's hand either.

The Sultan and I were at Game 4 where the Devils lost to the Rangers. NY Rangers fans are CORE! They love that team more than life itself. To me, it's like the Michigan vs. Ohio State rivalry times 10. Wonder what Rangers fans think of Avery now?

Again, joke or publicity stunt, it's a lame ass move, Avery. Don't wish you were back with the Wings?

GO WINGS!!!!!!!!

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Thursday, May 22, 2008

Good Looking Man About Town

Ah yes, it's today ... the 49th birthday of Morrissey, my favorite star. Still a charming man (heh), the former Smiths frontman is readying the release of "All You Need is Me," the second single -- out June 2nd according to morrissey-solo -- from his latest Greatest Hits collection. Mozzer, you don't look too shabby.

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Tuesday, May 20, 2008


"The dismal fact is that self-respect has nothing to do with the approval of others -- who are, after all, deceived easily enough; has nothing to do with reputation, which, as Rhett Butler told Scarlett O'Hara, is something people with courage can do without."

-- Joan Didion, from her chapter On Self-Respect, Slouching Towards Bethlehem

[Image courtesy of Mostly Americana]

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Sunday, May 11, 2008

Just Because ...

Ryan and I met this friendly little fella named Kato yesterday in Jersey City. He had his tongue out the whole time. Isn't he cute?

While I do love me some Pugs, I'm still partial to my Beagles. NYC Beags! Where are you?

In tribute to my all time favorite beagle, Dumars -- yes, we named him after Joe Dumars. It was 1989 and we were obsessed with the Detroit Pistons, who were the NBA champs at the time -- Happy Birthday! He would have turned 19 yesterday. R.I.P. DIW!

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Thursday, May 08, 2008

Food... with some TLC

My childhood babysitter, Doreen, is a no-nonsense woman who takes care of everyone before herself. Whether she and her husband are mowing lawns for the elderly or driving all over Michigan to attend their grandchildren's various sporting events, Doreen is always happy to help and happy to be there. My family adores her and her family... for we've had the pleasure of knowing Doreen and Co. since I was five weeks old. We also LOVE her cooking.

So I'd like to share one of Doreen's awesome dishes, Chicken Tettrazini. Ryan and I make this on occasion and we love it!

- Pre-cook four cups of chicken by boiling
- Sauté 1/4 cups of celery and 1/4 cup of yellow onion heart-healthy olive oil
- Mix the following in a mixing bowl and add all contents to the diced chickem
* 16 oz. of fat free sour cream
* 2 cups of 98% fat free Cream of Chicken Soup
- Boil 8 oz. of spaghetti, drain and rise
- Place spaghetti in bottom of pan(s)
- Pour mixture over top of pasta and bake 30-40 minutes at 350 degrees
- Top with part-skim mozzarella cheese -- 4 cups or more; put back in over until melted

I'm tellin' ya peeps, this is good stuff!

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Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Concrete Sky

This view, near Astoria Park, is a two-minute walk from my apartment. I heart Queens! (Photos courtesy of me)

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Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Scrabble Dabba Do

What, am I 30 going on 65? I am becoming obsessed with Scrabble. I blame my pals, the Coreys, for passing the Scrabble bug on to me. Up until a few weeks ago, I hadn't played the game since I was a kid. Now, I'm crazy about it. I ordered the classic edition from Amazon so Ryan and I can play. I'm also going bonkers over the fact that Scrabulous, a fab online place to play the game, has been down for 12 hours. AND it's not supposed to be fixed for another day. BOO!

I've never played Solitaire or any other computer games. I stopped playing Nintendo in high school except for the friendly Mario 3 game with my sister. The idea of Wii appeals to me, and I've played Rock Band and that SO RULES! I do enjoy my Tetris via mobile while traveling on the subway or waiting in the airport, but that's about it. Now, I'm absolutely head over heels, insanely crazy for freakin' online Scrabble. I'm square.

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Monday, May 05, 2008

Supermellow Man

Happy Birthday to Echo & the Bunnymen frontman Ian McCulloch. The Liverpudlian-born rocker was born 49 years ago today. This year, Mac and Co. will be playing a host of shows in support of their 30 years as a band and celebrating their epic LP, Ocean Rain. I'll be at the Radio City Music Hall show October 1st.

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Saturday, May 03, 2008

ROCK for JWOC: A Concert to Benefit Laos

For those Noo Yawkers about to rock, come out to the Highline Ballroom tomorrow night (Sunday, May 4) for ROCK for JWOC.

Journeys Within Our Community (JWOC), a Cambodia-based non-profit organization that builds wells for villages without fresh water, offers micro-financing to support business growth and gives scholarships to children seeking higher education. My friend Kristina and her roommate Nicole are heading Laos in two weeks where they will spend the next year working with a new JWOC branch in order to bring the same programs to impoverished villages there. The money raised at ROCK for JWOC will help fund new Laos projects.

Artists such as Julius C, Shilpa Ray (of Beat the Devil) and Her Happy Hookers, Linfinity, and DJ Domer will be on hand to deliver quality tunage while Rogue Elephant, an improv comedy outfit from the Upright Citizens Brigade, will ready barrel of laughs.

So stop what you're doin' to come out to a great gig for a great cause! Advance tickets may be purchased via the Highline Ballroom site for $10 or spot your $15 at the door the day of the show. All contributions are tax-deductible (including tickets) AND 100% of ticket sales and raffle donations will go directly to JWOC.

The Highline Ballroom is located at 431 West 16th St. between 9th and 10th Aves. Doors at 7:00 p.m., first band at 8:00 p.m.

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Thursday, May 01, 2008

It's a Lucky 13 for The Cure

In support of their forthcoming thirteenth album, revered Brit rockers and one of my dear, dear favorites The Cure is prepping to offer fans a tidy, little package of fresh tunes. The catch is that all singles leading up to the new album will be issued on the 13th of each month, starting May 13th with "The Only One." The currently untitled LP, the band's first since their 2004 self-titled effort, is slated for a September 13th release date via Suretone/Geffen.

While "The Only One" arrives May 13th with the "NY Trip" b-side, second single "Freakshow" and the "All Kinds of Stuff" b-side will follow June 13th. Both tracks, produced by frontman Robert Smith and Keith Uddin, will not be included on the full-length.

Next up, the band -- vocalist/guitarist Robert Smith, bass player Simon Gallup, drummer Jason Cooper and guitarist Porl Thompson -- will kick off their U.S. tour May 9th in Washington DC. New Yorkers get served two gigs in June -- the 20th (Madison Square Garden) and the 21st (Radio City Music Hall).

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An Irish Past

As some of you know, Ryan and I love Queens and we especially love living in Astoria.

Nearby, there's this random cemetery enclosed by a fence. Many of the headstones are crumbling, but the grass is the greenest patch I've seen in New York City yet. It sits basically alone, off the busy rumblings of 21st St. and 26 Rd.. There's no sign, no name, nothing. But we've walked past this cemetery for over a year now and some of the tombstones include dates from the late 1800s.

Today, while doing some research via some Astoria blogs, I found out that it's The Irish Famine Cemetery.

Apparently, it's the final resting place of about 100 early Irish immigrants to Astoria, many who arrived after the Irish potato famine of 1847. Another website, The Greater Astoria Historical Society, says the cemetery sits next to the site of the original Our Lady of Mount Carmel, the second Catholic Church in Queens. It moved to Newtown Ave. and Crescent. in the 1870s and still stands there today.

I'm a history fan and I'm a fan of all things Irish since I'm of Irish heritage, so this is absolutely amazing and bizarre. Here are some of my pics.

It needs a serious mow and some extra love. Any Astorians or New Yorkers know anything about The Irish Famine Cemetery?

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The Intimacy of Karen Finley

It's been a while since we were graced with the brilliance that is Karen Finley. The American performance artist, author, and playwright, who is currently teaching Art & Public Policy at NYU, is known for exploring themes of sexual abuse, suicide, female sexuality, the human body and American politics. I absolutely love Finley's work -- her memoir A Different Kind of Intimacy is one of my favorites. Pooh Unplugged is also quite great!

Finley explored her thoughts on sexual violence in her The Return of the Chocolate-Smeared Woman performance, smearing her body in chocolate. Years later, in July 1999, Finley brought the chocolate back for an appearance in Playboy.

She was also one of the NEA Four -- along with artists Tim Miller, John Fleck, and Holly Hughes -- whose grants from the National Endowment for the Arts were revoked in 1990 by chairman John Frohnmayer. Senator Jesse Helms condemned Finley and Co. for being "undecent," but after a long three-year battle, the NEA Four won their case in court in 1993 -- each artist received settlements equal to their original grants. In the end, after reaching the United State Supreme Court, Congress pressured the NEA to stop funding artists.

Finley, in no way, shape or form, is a woman scorned. In fact, Finley is working on a new piece surrounding the recent Eliot Spitzer sex scandal entitled "Impulse to Suck: The performance of the apology and the separation between sex and state." In an article in The New York Sun, Finley explores the Madonna vs. the Whore complex and questions if sex is really separate from the state and much, much more. Let's hope she brings this new bit to the road.

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