IMI PARE RAU











{Thu, 15 February, 2007}   This ain’t a post, it’s a movement.

Senior moments… I returned from Romania in June ’03, a beat but not beaten man, & as the months separating my departure from the now have lengthened to years, my recollection of those moments in Dacia has become clearer, & more forthcoming.

So, too, my interest in late nineties rock n’ roll. Precisely, Athenaeum. (Thus, the bold-face afore this post. It was twelfth grade when I recall hearing “What I didn’t know”.)

A bit over a year ago, then, I went to CD*Exchange & put down a sawbuck on a copy of Radiance. I didn’t know quite what to expect, buying on the whim of a whim, just the opening chords of the first track running thru my head for about a fortnight in late November ’05.

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Hometown “heroes”… Milwaukee, the Great Place on a Great Lake — note: not the transliteration of the Algonquin — that I call home, where I was birthed at Columbia Hospital, attended school to twelfth grade, & make my way, since graduating college & returning from Romania, possesses a paucity of newspapers. There is one daily — The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (I delivered its first issue, & the last of the Journal) — & there is the long-time weekly (Shepherd Express nee Crazy Shepherd), the former a decent read, light on the int’l news, but not bird toilet, & the latter a contemptible if it were worth contemplating squeeqee. Rest assured, it is not worth any thought, & can be summed in one phrase: “What da fock?” (Chief sentiment of life-time drunk & probably veteran’s disability/S.S.I. recipient Art Kumbalek, the backpage writer for S.E.)

In the last trio of years, though, three or four papers have emerged, at the very least to carry the torch that the Shepherd has burnt down over thirty years, but at least one with pretensions of intellect. We have The Press, which probably is defunct; MKE, an odds-&-sods off-shoot of the daily Journal-Sentinel for the twenty-five-to-thirty-five demographic (heavy on restaurant reviews, interviews with boutique owners, & show previews); & Vital Source, a vanity project of the unmarried-but-cohabiting owners of the arthouse & independent coffeehouse Bremen Cafe.

 & V.S. is the one with which this post is concerned.

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{Sat, 10 February, 2007}   Acronymology. (I just made that up.)

Previously seen on my other blog… I wrote of the sexual practice of ass-to-mouth, by which I mean, the performance of anal sodomy, followed by the removal of any rectal debris of the penetrated via the tongue of same (to wit: oral sodomy), at Why, Kiki! Therein, I posited that ATM should be known hence as “Alterran relations”.

 Now, in the spirit of Turkish idol Lee Corso, I spell it out for you.

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Alpha brah… So, the film was not what I expected, from the trailer. Not that they are, usually. But even Timberlake appeared ready to pop with his thespian skill. (Yes, indeed, his is one of the only bright spots in this feature, that said.) But this film, for the parts — Willis! Sharon Stone! Cassavetes’s kid! That dude from the OC that was in Girl Next Door! — lacks coherence. From first reel to last, this biography is composed in a scattershot mode, the tone never more than mildly jittery, no matter if the scene before you is goth kid reluctantly digging a grave or pot dealer begging same sex fellatio. For such an heinous series of events, in authorized reproduction, the film is quite blah.

 … But, that’s just it. Whether they meant to — they didn’t — the cast & crew have created the film Buddyhead: In the beginning… From the aforementioned goth kid (a dead-ringer for Travis Keller, ne sais pas?) to the braggadocious dealer behind the protection of two dobermans & two or three sycophants (Joe Cardomone; the Icarus Line?), we see the pieces that merged to become the “infamous” webzine of early second willenium vintage. Oh, their gossip was so incisive! Ha, their rock guitars shredded where most post-Nirvana rock bands tweeted! But were they, now? Not so much. They lied thru their teeth & preened their way to the status of lap-dog of the nation’s rich but insecure celebri-class (Reznor, Maynard Keenan). Theirs was nothing but the pose of the goth boy who flirted outrageously with the Valley “tart’s” plastic mother, the urban vernacular spouting but daddy’s-boy, really, personage encarnated by Timberlake.

There is truth in this movie, then. Just not what Cassavetes meant to detail. (Which, I suppose, makes Alpha Dog that much more like Buddyhead Gossip.) I recommend this for any post-scene — or, more hopefully, never-scene — moviegoer, therefore.

 As to Timberlake: his evocation of post-Nirvana suburban gangsterism, with the veneer of bravado (a pistol, some weed, a girl with low self-esteem that’s willing to fellate your immature willy), but the fragility of the meekest Vagrant artist, is pitch-perfect. That is why his is the brightest star, going away from this film.

Final grade: F (viewed as the director intends); B (when seen as a parable of present-day suburbo-indie subculture).



As pitchers & catchers prepare their luggage… AL East, Blue Jays, barely (think a low win total, on the order of 90, a la the 87 win Yankees of 2000, & a tight finish, Sawkx & Yanks within three games or fewer)… This finish, at least at the top, has been a considered opinion for a few years, now, most notably in King Kaufman’s season previews at Salon. Why I am only seeing this happening, in ’07, is the advancing age of the top of the Yankee rotation (Pettitte, Mussina) & the likely regression of minor league products of recent vintage (cough, Melky, cough) — there was a reason he was on nobody’s radar to trade for, when the Yankees went into mid-season re-arming mode — coupled with a similar aging in Boston (Schilling, Lowell, Varitek) & the inconsistency of the youth (Beckett, (sad as it is for me to admit) Wily Mo). So, largely, the two-heads monster of the past decade has gotten soft, allowing a plugging Blue Jays side to skip to the front. Halladay & Burnett (healthy, so far, knock on wood) on which the rotation will turn, plus the offense of Overbay, Glaus, Wells… & the Zauner will propel that move;

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et cetera