Good old buddy James Brooks sent me the vinyl LP version of the Judy Experience album in the mail earlier this week. It features artwork by my homegirl Cotton. I had the CD version, but I'm so excited to get the full surround sound deep vinyl effect.
This record, which includes the songs used in James' film HI BI GIRLS is fucking amazing and one of my favorite things ever. You can buy it on the Judy Experience page. I'm excited to spend the winter sitting on my floor and listening to the vinyl over and over again. And burn incense. Like Carta d'Armenia.
Miss Greg Potter took this lovely photo of B0DYH1GH performing at La MaMa over the weekend:
I woke up at 5:30 this morning and listened to this song at the gym. I couldn't shake the feeling that the opening riff reminded me of another song.
It took me inordinately long to realize it reminded me of this song:
They're both from 2001 so go figure, right?
After reading the somewhat dismissive (if not downright damning) article about Eileen Fisher in The New Yorker a few months ago, I've been kind of obsessed. Then I started seeing ads for their harem pants. Made (joyously!) in the USA. I want them so bad. I watched this commercial about them this morning before I went to work.
Doesn't that make you so excited to go to the office? I decided that since I don't have my own pair of dignified, uptight yet relaxed professional female Eileen Fisher harem pants (at least not yet) to wear the closest thing in my wardrobe. Even though it's a little dressier than I normally wear to work. I made it all the way to the subway this morning before the found a moth cocoon stuck my pants. My very favorite black wool BLACK CdG pants. I got to work and found two tiny pinprick holes in them. I'm really hoping that this moth problem can be solved. I JUST put my wool sweater back in the closet, and I bet it's getting eaten as I type this. I'm pretty mortified and definitely miffed. Ah well. At least I found a pretty cheap and very nice dry cleaner. Hopefully he can patch up these pants, my favorite pair. If not, then this gives me an excuse to replace them (probably with the Eileen ones, but knowing me with another pair of BLACK CdG pants in more moth-proof polyester). Fuck wool. Fuck cashmere and fuck wool. I want to only wear vegan clothing. But I do like leather shoes. I've made my peace with the animals.
The other night I went to go see Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore read from her new book The End of San Francisco. I've never owned one of Mattilda's novels, but I want the newest one, the memoir, real bad. Obviously, growing up as a queer in the bay area in the early aughts, Gay Shame was hugely influential to my thinking and feeling about queerness and power and the world around me. OBVIOUSLY, I'm a huge admirer of Mattilda's thinking and writing and voice and spirit and her work means a tremendous amount to me. We're not friends, we don't know each other. I saw her do a really fantastic reading at Dixon Place a few years ago (I think it was when Lady Miss Genius Sara Marcus was still curating the Queer Text series there), and I think I gave Mattilda a copy of my zine. I'm intimidated, a big fan, this is all to say. SO! The talk was great. I wish I had seen the other readings in NYC which Mattilda gave. The chapter she read was scintillating, literally, in the sense of throwing off light; illuminating. The questions and answers were also really great. Mattilda talked a bit about nostalgia, and how it's a kind of violence, and also talked about Patti Smith's Just Kids and how nostalgia figures into that too. I'm pretty much never trying to talk shit about Ms. Patti, and I didn't bother to read Just Kids because I thought it would depress me, and I don't want to paraphrase what Mattilda said, so I will point to this except from her most excellent blog (which is totally crucial reading, always):
"I’m talking about Patti Smith’s Just Kids and how she perpetuates this myth of New York in the ‘70s, that she was just hanging out and somehow propelled into the upper echelons of permanent stardom. That doesn’t happen to people who are just hanging out. It doesn’t happen to 99.9% of people who are trying to make it happen. There are many flaws in the book, but perhaps the most egregious ones in me is the way she keeps the mechanisms that propelled her to stardom invisible – she was just in the right time at the right place, right? We can never be there, will never be there, again."And then again, in an interview with the LA Review of Books:
"It’s talking about a pre-gentrification New York, but through a gentrified lens. She makes it seem like she was just hanging out at the Chelsea Hotel and suddenly met every famous male artist of the moment and rose to fame by coincidence. Everybody knows that in order to get famous, you need to work at it. It’s interesting because she talks about all that Mapplethorpe did to get famous, but really doesn’t expose the mechanisms that enabled her to get famous. It’s a dishonest book: she doesn’t punctuate the glamour, and in that way she creates this nostalgia for a New York that never really existed. It’s a kind of dishonesty that participates in the mythology of New York. It was a different New York, and things were possible that are not possible now, but the romanticization shuts off the possibilities for honesty, and that’s something that I want to avoid in my own writing. I want to expose the dynamics in an honest, revealing, and vulnerable way, rather than participating in a nostalgia for the possibilities of the past.
A lot of people relate to the idea of the end of bohemia. My question is more: can it ever exist? For me, the end of San Francisco was the beginning. I never moved to San Francisco and found community and everything I wanted and felt amazing and transformed. There were moments, and then [whatever was created] was destroyed, and that destroyed me."I feel really excited and inspired by these quotes, and not just because they're critical. Though, obviously, I do think that it's exciting to be able to appreciate something critically.I think there's a kind of sleight-of-hand that people are expected to withhold cognizance of, and it's kind of infuriating. So it's a big relief to have someone articulate the elephant in the room, even if it's an elephant which has been turned invisible by the power of the elephant-lovers' imaginations. I find, as I often do reading Mattilda's writing, that I wanted to jump up and say "Yes. Yeah. Right on!" But we don't necessarily have all of the same political beliefs. She was pretty clear about referring to going to the gym as a kind of luxurious trapping of consumer lifestyle, and she's not wrong. I guess I'm not critical of my gym membership because I don't think of it as an aesthetic experience, I consider it a cheaper alternative to Prozac? I'm sort of backpedaling here. I guess I feel guilty sometimes. Like talking about wearing designer clothes. Does this mean I'm a hypocrite. If I'm a hypocrite does it mean I can't be right about stuff or do you need to be entirely consistent to make a point. This isn't productive. I like the idea of embracing a more nuanced, less easy to digest version of history. That lived experience is always so much more complicated, and that glossing over it, or romanticizing it, does erase that nuance, in a way. I mean, look: I get it. I see that impulse and in many ways I live there. But it was bracing and exciting to hear about how and why we can try to do something different.
Ok. Having some afternoon coffee since I'm fading. I guess I only got five hours of sleep. I'm going to go see The Mutilated featuring my heroes Penny Arcade and Mink Stole tonight. I want to wear my CdG pants even though they have a hole in them. It's a tiny hole. Is that gross? I PROMISE to take my pants to the dry cleaner tomorrow.
Finally, here's a video for the new song by The Blow:
I love this song and their new record so much! I can't wait to see them perform in New York on Sunday night. I wonder if there will be a pit. If there is a pit, a mosh pit or a dance pit, I wanna go be in it.
I just don't know what pants I'll wear into the pit.