Saturday, October 25, 2008

Josh's Favorite Videos

Maybe For Halloween I Can Be Someone Who's Good With His Money

How oh how did I spend 160 dollars in two days? Who knows! Heh now I'm almost broke and I don't get paid until Thursday. Here we come, bowl-of-Lucky-Charms-as-a-meal. The frustrating thing is that it's totally all my fault.

Why have I still not learned how to manage my money? You'd think after living in New York for two-plus years that you'd have some knowledge about crazy foreign concepts like saving and budgeting and not buying yet another plaid button-down. The best part is that I'm really hungover, so I'll probably get delivery for lunch. Again.

Also I have no idea what I'm actually being--or doing--for Halloween. The past two years I've known since like the beginning of October where I'd be and what I'd be wearing, but I think between the economy, the election, and the party we're throwing tonight, Halloween's fallen off a lot of people's radars. I'd make a joke about being something stupid like this, but sadly I have already been a seƱor, and let me tell you, my feet were helados in my sandalias.

I'm way too out of it to coherently end this post, so here's a video of John McCain on an old episode of SNL. Enjoy.

-Josh

I'm Not Really Laughing Anymore About The End of Print

This is the first time I've ever been personally effected by 1) the decline of print journalism and 2) the crashing economy. A magazine that I was being paid to write for (I know! My first paid writing gig! Not longlasting!) officially folded yesterday. I found out through a press release which I thought was only something that happened in movies but I suppose not. Picture me sitting in a cafe in Paris fielding e-mails from friends who work at various media sites asking if I know anything about the folding of the mag. Why no, I do not, but thank you for informing me.

I am disappointed to lose the opportunity of working with really amazing and talented people, but c'est la vie. I can't expect incredibly brilliant and accomplished people to be fired from their print posts and me to escape unscathed. It's a learning experience. Frankly I was lucky to even have the opportunity at all.

I'm getting really nervous about "the industry" and "grad school" and "the GRE's." I honestly cannot even think about having to go through the school application process and take placement exams and get letters of recommendation. It's so daunting and I was happy to be done with it at 18. Now, less than three years later, I'm doing it again, and it's equally terrifying. There is only one program I've found so far that I'm obsessed with as the others are too dominated by print studies. We'll see. Ugh. Maybe I will just not go to grad school and live in a houseboat on the Seine. It would be nice to not stress, if even for a little while.

-Jess

What are you being for Halloween?

I was a Harajuku Girl last year because it meant I got to wear my hair in pigtails without being mocked

They don't really celebrate Halloween in Paris but I'm going to find the one bar that does and dress up and not almost OD on a certain stimulant like I did last Halloween, heh. I was going to be really lazy and go as Sarah Palin because it would require me wearing a blazer I usually wear anyway and my glasses and my hair up but then I thought even though I am lame I am (potentially) not that lame, so I nixed that idea. I am lazy, however. What does a lazy, broke girl dress as for Halloween in a city that doesn't celebrate Halloween?? What are you going as? HELP.

-Jess

Favorite "Fan" Email J&J Have Ever Received

From a freshman: (click to enlarge)LOL.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Josh's Favorite Videos



It's always great to see an established band still giving it 100% and not just coasting on former glory. The Red Hot Chili Peppers have been around for a while, but they clearly put a ton of effort into this video. Not only are the costume changes wonderful, but they've nailed the acting down as well! We all know Flea has voice-over experience (Wild Thornberries, anyone?), but who knew he'd have made a great 50s rocker, Elvis-style updo and all? Usually, older alt-rock bands come back with super-serious videos that negate the silliness that once made them famous. But not the Chili Peps! (Plus, Anthony Kiedis? Still totally doable.)

It's a great song with an entirely unrelated video, but I don't care! This is fun, exceedingly watchable, and proves that they're still going strong almost a quarter century after their debut release. So go ahead, take many trips down memory lane, and enjoy. And in the spirit of California, well...you know what I'm going to suggest. Doesn't hurt, is all I'm saying.

-Josh

Hey Guys

I'll talk to you all later this week. I've got papers and midterms (woohoo) this week, and I've actually got to buckle down and study my ass off for them, and I may end up wanting to kill myself but NOT UNTIL I EXPLAIN HOW EMILY DICKINSON'S POETRY WAS A FORERUNNER OF LITERARY MODERNITY.

So yeah. I've got one more video to show y'all and then I'm out for a couple days. Go go hermit mode!

-Josh

Monday, October 20, 2008

Feasting on Hemingway


I'm currently in the middle of reading A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway and all I have to say is: Oh. This is how I feel right now.

In real life Hemingway was well-known as what one might call an "asshat," that is to say- he sucked. I'll admit the book smacks of misogyny and though it is billed as a "memoir" it completely rests on the idea of Hemingway being a starving artist in Paris during the 1920s when in fact his wife had an inheritance and his "starving" was more anorexic and less poverty driven.

If you can put all that aside, A Moveable Feast is the best book I've read in a very long time, and that is not just because it subtly undercuts Gertrude Stein who I find absolutely intolerable. I hadn't read any Hemingway before this and it's funny because apparently he pioneered the style that I love and I had absolutely no idea. His writing is sparse but emotional. "All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence you know," he writes. Yeah. And then do that over and over for however many pages you want your piece to be.

I think reading this while in Paris makes it all the more moving because the things he says about this city are just so on point that I find myself audibly gasping in the Metro while reading them: "But Paris was a very old city and we were young and nothing was simple there, not even poverty, nor sudden money, nor the moonlight, nor right and wrong nor the breathing of someone who lay beside you in the moonlight."

God, Hemingway, it's like no matter what you are sad, even when you're happy you are sad, and that is something I can relate to in a horribly effortless way.

The book is just written from this place that I find extremely resonant at this point in my life. He is a young writer fucking around in Paris, trying to figure out himself and his writing. It was published posthumously, but the feeling of the struggle is still there. There's this subtle "us vs. them" mentality; Hemingway is young and he's taking on this avant garde establishment that has already aged, a la Gertrude Stein. He's taking wisps of what they've created and pioneering this style that is so clear it is painful. Isn't that what all young writers want to do? We all think we're going to change the face of literature. The idealism that is in this book is in our bones, until the rejection letters and the angry editors and the anonymous commenters beat it out of us, it is there. I want to keep it as long as possible because look what happened to Hemingway when it was siphoned out of him: he wrote about this idealism in a retrospective way, because he didn't have it anymore, and then he fucking killed himself.

-Jess

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Maine!

Hey guys, I went away this weekend as well! Only instead of skinny-dipping in Barcelona, I ate lobster and hung out on the New England shore--in other words, I spent a fine weekend in Maine.

When Eliza gets our photos developed (JOSH'SHOTS forgot to bring his memory card, and he's kicking himself for it), I'll do a more detailed post. In the meantime, just know that Ogunquit is like the gay capital of Maine and that the Front Porch (pictured above) is home to nightly Broadway singalongs and the strongest cosmos I've ever had the pleasure of consuming.

Also, if you're reading this, Shaun, sorry I ditched you Friday night. When you said "let's go to Main Street," I didn't realize you meant a gay bar called Maine Street as opposed to, like, another area of the quaint little road we were already on; I was in no mood for clubbing. Good luck with cosmetology school.

-Josh

I went to Barcelona this weekend and all I got was this lousy 48 hour hangover

http://traveldk.com/dkimages/0-barcelona_master.jpg

Ha. Ok, I got tapas too.

I didn't have the internet there either which was freeing but also meant I spent the entire weekend reliving my freshman year by binge drinking in clubs that play remixes of Eurythmics and then going skinny dipping in the Mediterranean while scores of Spaniards gathered off to the side to pretend to... well, I don't know what they were pretending but they were watching us skinny dip and it was awkward. Also, hi, it's October, so it was freezing.

I'd post pictures but David's camera had all of them and it got stolen in the last hours of our trip, along with his cell phone. Barcelona is vivacious and wonderful and stunning but they have a major theft problem.

I also tried Absinthe for the first time and was all "I feel weird," and when someone said they live by the phrase "Go big or go home" I realized I'd probably just prefer to go home and eat ice cream and read a book. (My Grammy and I have a lot more in common than our mutual distrust of fruit sold on the street)

And now, it's almost 8pm, which means sleeping off this beast of a hangover, and waking up dew-eyed and rosy for my 9am-er tomorrow.

I will be back to my regular posting schedule -- with things other than random, ultra personal blurb -- shortly.

-Jess