\ˈdäk-sik nän-ˌsen(t)s\

(doxic nonsense)

eclipsis

December 1st, 2007

“we may be through with the past, but the past ain’t through with us.” – magnolia

suppose a voice from the past pops up completely out of the blue. someone you’ve, in one way or another, tried to avoid, get over, and come to peace with for, oh, say, five years. and yet, the nausea is somehow balanced with intense curiosity. you’re asked to get together for drinks and catching up.

and, oh, yeah: the whole thing was done via facebook.

what do you do?

i’m thinking bourbon, in the short term…

transient

November 27th, 2007

to the stunning readhead sitting across from me on the q train, with ipod earbuds in and the slightest, most captivating grin:

here we sit, two people on their morning commute, carving out our solitary spaces amongst everyone else on the train. i’m still waking up, listening to aimee mann’s “lost in space,” mouthing along to the lyrics, giving in to the music, and sneaking glances at you. once or twice you catch me, and the curve of your smile gets a little bigger, maybe recognizing that we’re both coping with the packed rush hour train in the same way, but more likely because i look ridiculous, mouthing along to a song only i can hear. your smile is so honest, so beautiful, so captivating, that i can’t look away, and have to close my eyes, really getting into the chorus of “invisible ink,” wondering what it is on your ipod that can make you smile like that. i open my eyes, asking myself how socially inappropriate it would be to just start talking to a stranger on the subway, only to find an empty seat across from me.

i’m sorry i didn’t get a chance to ask you, but i know i wouldn’t have anyway.

i guess that’s what i’m really apologizing for.

a list

October 6th, 2007

things i am into right now:

  • the guy on the 2 train home a few weeks ago reading the economist wearing the exact same “fat-albert-ass headphones” i wear every day
  • early tom waits albums, big star, the beta band, aimee mann, nick drake
  • the associated grocery store on my walk home from the train
  • visiting the above a little too frequently so i can have a respectable kitchen to cook in
  • eating nothing but homemade food at least one day a week
  • the balcony-porch-type-thing at my new apartment: i spend a good 80% of my time at home out there
  • having roommates, and siting on the above-mentioned porch, drinking beer and talking about things that don’t involve theatre in the slightest
  • brooklyn lager and miller high life (see above)
  • not having to leave the apartment tomorrow if i don’t want to
  • tonight’s extravagant dinner at the west bank with d and em

i’m starting to think a better title for this blog might have been “the stunningly quotidian.”

awkward pause

October 4th, 2007

so there has been a slight lull in postings here… is it sad that i have to look at my iCal to figure out what i’ve been doing for the past two months?

so, just a few days after my last post, my iBook was stolen out of my bag in a bar after rehearsal, two days before tech for my show at playwrights, and i was much more traumatized than i care to admit. then, the designer for that show ended up not coming down after all, so i took over his design, only to watch it fail sort of spectacularly at the invited dress (as i had warned the director it might two weeks earlier). so, i redesigned the bulk of the show overnight, and spent the entire (lengthy) preview process playing catch-up. in the end, designing a show at playwrights was a huge deal for me, and the show was great, even if i felt like my design was rushed and unfinished.

somewhere in there, i signed a lease on an apartment, which is even more of a huge deal for me than designing a show at playwrights. for the first time since i left louisville on tour with the rachel’s in september of 2003, i have a permanent living situation. my roommates are great, the apartment (second floor of a house in crown heights) is great, and living in a neighborhood that i can call home for longer than a few months is, well, great. the house warming party will be in october, and i can promise it will be an evening not to be missed.

a day after moving in, i promptly flew to the dublin fringe festival with the TEAM (where the show won best production, and libby took home a best performer award). i’ll say this about the irish: they are serious about all the right things. leaving out the beer and whiskey, irish butter and dubliner cheese are nothing short of astounding. i was only there for a few days, but it was a great to be back on the road with my company.

then i headed straight home to kentucky for nick’s wedding. she and i have been best friends since the fourth grade, and i was so proud to be in her wedding. jonathan is a great guy, and they make a perfect couple, in a completely non-sickeing way. it was good to be home and see the folks for the first time since new years, but i wish i had been around a little longer, seen some friends, and enjoyed louisville, which i still miss dearly.

i flew right back to new york for the opening of the show at playwrights at the west bank, which was fantastic because i got to drink for free all night at my favorite bar, and i got an excuse to get all dolled up, which i don’t feel people do often enough anymore. i wish i owned more than one suit, and i wish i didn’t wear jeans everyday, but i don’t think i could pull off wearing a suit to tech every day. i still think everyone would be much sexier if we didn’t dress so casually all of the time, though.

and that was my supposed down time: now the craziness of the season begins…

(wow, so, that was mundane and long. i guess i’m trying to make up for not posting by filling up space. sorry)

just another saturday night

August 12th, 2007

so, more than a month without a post… not that anyone should be all that surprised. i found a draft of a post called “ow my liver” about a wonderful but very drunken weekend with the vanya and st. joan casts, steve cramer, and emily and entourage for her birthday. the few nights with steve were epic, and have been dubbed “all cramer’s- eve” and “steve cramer day.”

anywho.

last night, after rehearsals, miki and i headed across the street to the west bank to blow off some steam (and how). zoe and janel were there as well, and ken was behind the bar, so, of course, a good time was had by all.

the best part of the evening, though, was the cab ride home. after packing miki off in a cab, i hopped in the next one as the radio announced a piece (whose title i didn’t hear) “conducted by leonard bernstein.” i asked the cabbie to turn it up, and we blissed our way up the west side highway until the piece was finished. for the rest of the drive, he only wanted to talk about west side story, which seems to me as a rather odd conversation to have with a cabbie, but was enjoyable nonetheless. i only remember agreeing with whatever he was saying while straining to hear the radio he had turned down, responding every once in a while when something he said broke my focus on the burried music.

i have to say: some of my favorite new york experiences have been cab rides.

oh, and, as a public service announcement, don’t try to watch a subtitled movie at 2am after a heavy-handed bartender has pouring for you.

foundations

June 28th, 2007

asa got rach and i tickets to horizion at nytw last night and, aside of getting bumped from row g to row a, it was an evening that sorta made me fall back in love with seeing theatre (not that i’d fallen out with theatre, but i sometimes find it hard to enjoy a performance when i spend most of my waking hours making theatre). it was inventive, interesting, and both smart and clever. i rarely see music worked into straight plays well, much less as effortlessly and intrinsically as these seemingly virtuosic performers wove it into each moment in the show. from an exacting score to naked and honest barbershop quartets to rinde’s heartstopping aria, the whole event woke me up to what i can and should be doing as a sound designer. we don’t have to pander to people to get them into the theatre, and good theatre doesn’t have be to exclusive of a wide audience.

if there were more works like this, i would go to the theatre more often.

as a side note, it looks like it might be turning into the summer of tom waits for me.

and they say cheaters never win

June 27th, 2007

so, yes: i cheated. i back-posted the past five or so posts with dates and times that reflect when the pertinent thought was first scribbled down, not when it was typed up and posted. i am deeply sorry if this offends anyone’s archival or historical sensibilities, but it made more sense to me to do it this way.

the back room

June 27th, 2007

owen threw steph an entire birthday hooha last weekend, the saturday of which ended with cocktails at the back room, which just might be the best bar ever. tucked downstairs and behind an old school toy store in the east village (across from the sadly vacant tonic), they do up the speakeasy vibe in spades: jazz was playing as we walked in, all cocktails were served in tea cups and beers were served wrapped in plastic bags. the lovely and talented kim (my new favorite cocktail waitress crush) served our progressively larger and more boisterous party with ease and grace, always taking time to perch and explain our unique and custom cocktails to us.

and, oh my lord, these cocktails were, hands down, the finest i’ve ever had. they all seemed to be whiskey based, but with fresh ingredients muddled in to astounding effect: one mixed cucumber, mint and fresh lemon juice; fresh ginger made a number of appearances; a simple mixture of bourbon and a few fresh blackberries surprised us all; but my favorite was the “peach smash,” with fresh muddled peaches and mint shaken with bourbon and prosecco. now, i’m not usually one for cocktails, especially not for fruity ones, but the kind gentleman making these drinks truly deserves the title “mixologist,” and i am not at all ashamed for having enjoyed his work.

the drinks were astounding, the company lively (though i was saddened to learn of steph and owen’s imminent move to chicago), and the service impeccable. nick and i are worried that we might make a habit of this place. fortunately, kim only works saturdays.

laying low

June 20th, 2007

the doldrums of the summer find me finally cooling my heels back in new york, recovering from working in two countries and three time zones in the past eight weeks. so i’m camping out at d’s apartment, pulling the dvds off his shelves and watching the featurettes and documentaries, but not the actual films. this has lead to a lot of realizations, the chief of which is “i wanna be ben burtt!” (walter murch is pretty badass too).

yes, i’m finding motivation lacking. this always happens when i burn out and then have time on my hands. at least i finally got my mail set up for ssl correctly (editing the bsd host file in terminal is fun!) (ok, i’m a big ol’ geek), but i’m afraid i’ve also become a bit of a facebook whore, which can’t be seemly of someone not in college.

it has been nice taking time to see some friends, though. an actual sit-down dinner with danielle and brad just to catch up was socially refreshing: just chatting around a couple of pitchers of sangria, no rushing. got to hang with asa for the better chunk of yesterday after a production meeting, chatting away and playing each other music over the house rig at nytw. then em and i met up for afternoon drinks, and dinner at around the clock before heading up to check out her apartment which i hadn’t seen since move in day. as i waited out the rain there, we kept chatting, and i realized that i don’t actually talk to my friends much anymore, certainly not in person.

so i resolve to make plans to actually see my friends more, because i realize i’m kinda a lousy friend.

exact to me

June 10th, 2007

so i stayed in dc an extra couple of days to see the sea and cake at the black cat last night, as it’s been a long time since i’ve seen them live, and i’ve been obsessed with seeing a show at the black cat since i read about the working holiday bash back when i was a jenny toomey groupie in high school (not that i’ve lost my rockstar-crush on her at all). so, slightly hungover from friday night in baltimore, i headed up to the black cat where some nice lady offered me one of her extra tickets for ten bucks. nice.

i caught most of the opening set by the zincs, who were musically great, but i just couldn’t get into that guy’s voice. great drummer, though. as they packed up, i went over to the merch table to pick up a copy of the sea and cake’s new album and a t-shirt (yes, i’m that guy), which was sold to me by none other than my indie-rock hero archer prewitt. i was kinda embarrassed at being sorta star-struck, and he was appreciative that i had exact change, so i guess it all worked out.

now happily having spent almost 40 bucks on the evening without having bought a drink yet, i resumed my place near the sound console to see loney, dear, who slowly and steadily blew me away. the place was getting packed, and i got irked that no one would quiet down for his quietly fingerpicked opening solo number. when the band joined him, it was like a smaller, sweeter, simpler version of sufjan stevens’ illinoise makers. the audience was invited to sing along, even taught the dead-simple but catchy-as-all-hell nonverbs of “ignorant boy, beautiful girl,” but it was obvious that the crowd was there to see the sea and cake, and not some swedish folk-pop multi-instrumentalist and his backing band. which was a shame, ’cause i kinda fell in love with them, even the chick standing behind the keyboard that i don’t remember her playing, though she had her background singer/tambourine skills finely honed.

as the bands changed over i realized that, though i was standing far enough away to hear everything perfectly, i wasn’t close enough to actually watch my geek-idols play. so, feeling absolutely foolish, i started weaving through the crowd towards somewhere with a better vantage, which i found happily under one of the massive air conditioning ducts. there were a lot of couples there to see the sea and cake, which struck me as odd, since i think of their music as lonely-single-geek music, but maybe that’s because i’m a lonely-single-music geek. and what’s with people calling their friends in the middle of a song and holding the phone out to the stage, then trying to shout a conversation over the music: you can’t be enjoying the music while doing that, and i’m certainly not having a good time with you doing that next to me.

regardless, the sea and cake rocked, of course. i was astounded to see them do a whole set sans synths: just drums, bass and two guitars. now, archer did have a sea of pedals at his disposal, and he even picked up an ebow for a couple of tunes to fake a synth effect, but they did it like a rock and roll band, and did it well. sam led them through a positively blistering “jacking the ball” with his signature scat-yelp, making me wonder if he was looking for a new spin on old material, or if he honestly hated playing what has become a chestnut for them. either way, it was kinda thrilling. eric claridge (didn’t look like how i remember him, but who knows) was a mountain of a god behind that bass, john mcentire was bewitching as always with his mad precision, and sam and archer crooned while climbing all over those guitars effortlessly. the updated/modified versions of old favorites were just as captivating as hearing the new material live, and the encore closer, “do now fairly well,” just floored me. only cats have been playing together for almost 15 years can make music like that.