4/28/07


Well,

What does one do after seeing their roommate naked in film he recently filmed? The mature set would argue in the case of nothing; we are all mature adults here. Among the Colorado suburban conservative constituency a dumfoundment to merely comprehend existing in such a reality where one would be faced with such a dilemma.
Full frontal, hmmm I’ve eaten live octopus, shrimp, lobster, and trout, but I really do not see myself willing posing in a full frontal shot.
I guess we all have our personal extremes, for some bare nakedness and others exotic foodiness. Speaking of which, Golden Sake. A Japanese rice wine with flakes of gold is now a beverage I can add to my list of exotic imbibements, a delightfully way to usher in ones past with ones comings.

4/26/07

Acute Melodramatic Restlessness

Joseph Learned, a rambunctious traveler whose amusing stories and international escapades enliven the lives of his family and friends, expired last Sunday in the midst of his latest expedition to New York. He was 24.

The cause was Acute Melodramatic Restlessness, said a spokesman for Sloan Kettering, where Mr. Learned had been a Temporary Grant Research Coordinator since March of this year.
In the 1980s and early 1990’s, Mr. Learned lumbered through primary school, finding it difficult to focus and remain in his chair for prolonged periods of time. This resulted in a great deal of friction between him and his teachers.

Nearing the end of his 8th grade year Mr. Learned merciless teasing of a fellow student left him facing expulsion, only through the intervention of his instructor, Mr. Meller was he spared. This event marked a turning point in Mr. Learned’s studies. Throughout High School and University he received high marks and maintained positive relationships with his professors and fellow students.

Upon completing University a semester early Mr. Learned left to teach English in Japan, Taiwan, the Philippines, and Korea. Mr. Learned deeply enjoyed living in abroad and spent his free time ridding his motorcycle and sampling a variety of exotic cuisine’s and beverages. These untamed encounters lead him to begin writing animated E-mail’s to his friends and family.

Mr. Learned returned to the United States and moved to New York in January of 2007. While he enjoyed the city, at times he found it difficult to readjust to living in the United States. Hoping to resume living abroad Mr. Learned had secured a position in Dubai just days before his untimely departure.

Mr. Learned is survived by his cohort of 24 years, Joseph Learned; his loving family, caring friends, and a toy, Voltron, of Tokyo, Japan.

4/19/07

Colorado Winters

There were radio and TV towers at its peak meaning that though well hidden, this mountain had a service road. For several days this concealed road occupied my imagination. Finally I had to find it.

Not knowing where to start I exited from the main road and onto a road leading towards the base of the mountain. The uneven dusty dirt road conjured a smile and feeling I had last felt on the curvy mountain roads in Taiwan. Wearing only sandals I understood the importance of perfection; one slip and I might loose a toe or two. Skirting the razors edge of perfection and diaster I continued on.

Children living in a hut alongside the road screamed and waved as I rushed past. Ahead I began to see traces of where the road cut into the backside of the mountain. I downshifted into second for more power and pushed the motorcycle up the dilapidated mountain road. Bouncing over rocks and dodging monstrous pot holes I filled the air with dust and exhaust. I could feel the heat from my two stroke pouring out against my legs. Unsure of the ancient engines ability to handle this much stress I caught sight the peak.

It was cooler and the air smelled cleaner up here. The ocean stretched out before me pockmarked with islands and boats. After looking carefully I could even see my house. Memories of cold Colorado winters from my childhood reminded me how I’d once dreamed of living in the endless summer of the equator. Gazing at the uncomplicated beauty of what lay before me I grinned knowing I had finally satisfied that wish.

Several weeks later I returned to the peak while on a date. The sun had long since gone down, but full moon and my headlight guided the way. The view was so different at night. The city bellow was calm and the distant sound of karaoke could be heard in the night air. Fishing boats with their lights spotted the ocean bellow. I looked back at my date, knowing this was all lost on her. She did not like it up here. The night air was cool and her favorite TV show was on.

She had shown me what I wanted to see, it was time to return to the city.

4/16/07

The A Train

I was bored and this cold windy rainy Sunday left me feeling trapped. Even the short walk from my apartment to the subway promised to leave me soaking wet. Hoping to whittle away the day inside I busied myself around the apartment, but that soon grew old.

Why was I inside? Didn’t New York always have something to offer? I dug deep into my over active imagination searching for ideas. Then it dawned on me. The subway would be warm and dry, why not take pictures of the subway. The A train was my artery into the city, I took it into work during the week and when I went out on the weekend; my every adventure, every workday began with the A train.

The walk from my apartment to the subway was unpleasant, but short. For once the train arrived quickly. Still unsure of what I was going to take pictures of I stepped on the train. The first stop after 168th was 163rd. The subway car door opened, giving me six seconds. Standing in door of the car I photographed a graffiti filled billboard. Then my time was up, the doors closed. As we approached the next station I cycled through the photos I had taken, keeping only one.

Before I was ready the doors opened up again at 155th street. Struggling to find a focal point I began blindly snapping pictures. Only when the doors had shut did I find my focal point. In the seconds before the train began to move I snapped a keeper from the rain covered window.

For the next hour or so I rode the A train. When we reached its last stop in Manhattan I jumped off caught a train home. My rainy day had been salvaged and I had a new story to tell.
Would you like to see some of these pictures? http://www.flickr.com/groups/nycsubwayroutesigns/pool/
I have yet to upload a picture of the infamous diaper, should I?

4/15/07

The Diaper

The subway always ran slow on the weekend. With no express service it took me nearly an hour to make it into midtown. Being made to wait an additional twenty minutes for the train was not helping things. Feeling antsy I began to pace back and fourth. Then I realized that I should use this experience to my advantage. Everyday I stood in the same place to catch the train. There was so much unexplored territory to either side of me. Without hesitation I began to walk to the far end of the platform. Near its edge the scent of urine filled the air and a dirty diaper lie on the ground with a rat chewing into it. Startled we met eyes.

The rat knew it had been caught performing the most foul of acts, ashamed it retreated to the darkness of the subway tunnel. From there it peered back. Never before had I seen such a wrenched living thing. Even a rotting carcass with its flies and maggots seems more sterile than this perverted act. A faint rumble and thin gust of wind signaled the emanate arrival of the train. The rat continued down the tunnel and I stepped back from the edge of the platform. Stepping onto the train I looked back at the diaper.
The rat would be back and soon the diaper would be gone.

4/12/07

Soup and Salad

Yesterday was a rather cold spring day, making my lunchtime walk to the local pizza shop rather lackluster. Along with regular assortment of people on the side walk there was an old man asking for passers by to buy him some soup. I glanced at him and noticed that he did not look like your typical homeless person. Curious about his story I offered to buy him some soup.

He thanked me and we headed inside of the restaurant. After he set his bags down by a table we walked to the counter and ordered some soup. After we had ordered our soup the old man asked me if could also have a salad. Feeling generous I agreed. With soup and salad in hand we walked towards the cash register. In a submissive voice that old man asked if he could also get a box of almonds. I felting less generous, I agreed yet again and the old man scurried off to get his almonds.

As we waited for a clerk the old man asked if he could have another box of nuts. I looked at him and said, “You are going to have to choose between the almonds and the cashews.” “Oh, all right,” the old man replied. The clerk began to ring up our meal and in a last ditch effort the old man asked if he could also have some cookies. I looked at him dumbfounded and said, “Listen I do not have that much money.” “Are you sure I can’t have a few oatmeal cookies,” the old man asked one more time. Feeling the last bit of generosity slip from my slim wallet I looked him in the eye and repeated, “I do not have that much money man.”

The bill came to $20; half my weekly grocery budget. We sat down to enjoy our split pea soup and I asked the old man about his life. One of the more amusing stories he told me was that he had been sleeping in between two duplexes since he had arrived in New York a week earlier. That was until to someone had “stolen” his blankets from in between the duplexes. As the old man recounted this story I could tell by the look in his eyes that he had no idea why someone would have a problem with him squatting next to their residence.

I walked out of the restaurant having learned a valuable lesson; if someone asks you for soup take them to the dollar store.

4/5/07

Its not that nothing has happened recently, it’s that nothing amazing has happened lately. There was the Friday I ate bull penis and tricked others at the table into trying it. Then there was the other Friday when I ate beef tongue and laughed when one of my lady friends screamed because the prawn she had just pulled the head off of dripped its brains onto her plate. Of course there was also the two Saturday nights I went to speed dating and talked it up with girls I would never have talked to otherwise.

Then there are all the things you learn when you move to a new place, such as if a subway car is empty during rush hour no matter what do not get on it. Twice I have made this mistake and twice I have had to deal with the olfactory consequences. Be it a homeless man that pooped in his pants or a homeless man whose left leg is cover in skin rot, it all smells bad.

At the end of it all I wonder how people are lonely in this city. There’s a group for everyone; even the Devil Worshipers had a meet up last night, though regrettably I did not attend. If the devils not your thing there’s always the Dumpster Divers, Mommy Milk, or countless others having weekly meetings about ideas important to some version of reality.

All this madness has been an adjustment, which I am still in the midst of making.