Archive for November, 2010

Aerobosnakes!

Posted in Uncategorized on November 30, 2010 by Cristina


Just read an all too scary article in my favorite section of the NY Times, science. I am pretty afraid of birds, snakes, robots and the military. Apparently, these crossroads meet at a Pentagon-funded research project that aims to create a flying snakelike search-and-rescue robot. Lord, almighty! The study involved scientists throwing the poorly named paradise tree snakes from a 50-foot tower to see how far they’d fly. While the farthest was 79 feet, I imagine these scientists used to be the scrawny kids who couldn’t throw a baseball to save their lives, so let’s assume that these results are lowball estimates of the flying powers of tree snakes. Terrifying. Sure, many good things have come out of military research and many birds/snakes/robots can be cute or useful, but this tetrad sounds like a nightmare. Picture this made of metal, flying around cities and controlled by the Air Force.

No.

Dysfunctional

Posted in Uncategorized on November 18, 2010 by Cristina

In my never-ending struggle to find creative ways to procrastinate, I put my hair up in pin curls the other night. Mountains of papers and reading and dishes and laundry didn’t stop this girl… had to get mah currrrlz on. I looked like a lazier, less talented love-child of Rosie the Riveter and Tupac.
 
This image is today’s Daily Affirmation That There Is Something Wrong With Me!  Only way to soothe the guilt and make Mama Rosie  and Papa Tupac proud is to start a productivity frenzy.  I hope my curls don’t get messed up in the process.

Filmagic

Posted in Uncategorized on November 12, 2010 by Cristina

Netlix mailed me God Grew Tired of Us in July and Once Upon a Time in the West in August; unwatched, these movies have been collecting dust at the rate of $13/month since then. That’s expensive dust and they’re probably great movies that don’t deserve this kind of treatment. I’ve decided that this ends TODAY. I will watch one and return both so that I can get back in the groove of enjoying feature length films that I miss so much. One of my top 3 movies is North by Northwest because the action parts are this hilariously exciting:

And the romantic parts are awesomely subversive. Hands down the best pickup lines I’ve ever heard.
 Alfred Hitchcock neighborhood film watch will commence next week. “If we ever get out of this alive … let’s go back to New York on the train together.”

Encore des macarons!

Posted in Uncategorized on November 9, 2010 by Cristina

Once upon a time time, my sister was nice enough to mail me a huge box of macarons, a ganache-filled confectionery not to be confused with coconut macaroons (I affectionately call the fancy french things “sliders” because they look like mini hamburgers; this makes macaron-connoisseur sister angry). 

As soon as the overnight package arrived with its refrigerated contents, I ran to a thrift store to purchase a wee suitcase. I’d made a promise to a special friend so I fulfilled it: “Oh, you like macarons? Ok, I’ll give you a suitcase full of macarons.” The suitcase contents satisfied three humans for about three days. Now I need another box for this next adventure:

In more words, I’d like to play checkers using macarons as the pieces, eating them throughout the game as I conquer my opponent. This might sound ridiculous, but I believe Wikipedia is on my side: “Pieces were traditionally made of wood, now many are made of plastic, though other materials may be used.” Although they don’t specify, I’m confident that the writers are referring to macarons here. I can’t think of a better way to consume $50 and 4,200 calories of pastries on a rainy day. Siiiister, send more sliders. Please!

Sex + Art

Posted in Uncategorized on November 7, 2010 by Cristina

I just read a short novel, Aura by Carlos Fuentes that is a sort of surrealist erotica thriller… a combination of words that will draw you in and make you uncomfortable and give your heart a workout. Although it features what some may consider uhhhh, pedophilia, it doesn’t seem offensive. Somehow, Carlos Fuentes is able to shed  a tender light on this controversial issue in a similar manner that Gabriel García Márquez does in Memories of My Melancholy Whores. These readings made me think of the collection of short films that I recently saw titled Destricted; it attempts to comment on this idea of the representation of sex, namely pornography, in art.

While the trailer looked promising, the bulk of the full-length film left me either confused, queasy or mildly amused, a combination of words I don’t really want to associate with sex. I’ll break down some examples.
confused: a man masturbating in Death Valley…
queasy: a man polishing his dick on some sperm-like pottery wheel while suspended under a gigantic Caterpillar deforestation truck (oh, there’s also a bulbous root vegetable dangling out of his anus, courtesy of Matthew Barney)…
mildly amused: a white emo-looking guy gets hired to do his first porno and chooses a white tennis shoe-clad 40 year old as his costar (she never takes her shoes off).
There were definitely some fascinating bits, but not enough to redeem the rest of the art snobbery/mediocrity. It might be that I’m neither sophisticated enough to see through the snobbery nor talented enough to appreciate more than mediocrity. Art schmart, sex schmex… I know that this next video has a beautiful mix of both. Nothing confusing, queasy or funny about it: 

If Fuentes or García Márquez were filmmakers, this would be more up their alley. Read the books, enjoy the booty video, skip Destricted. 

Banjo?

Posted in Uncategorized on November 5, 2010 by Cristina

My answer to this question will always lie at the intersection of Anytime and Anywhere! I said yes to seeing Frank Fairfield last night at Edgefield in a room surrounded by wine barrels and beer vats, smelling of fermentation, the air peppered with fruit flies. It was kind of like this:


He played at this summer’s Pickathon Festival in a big forest clearing, but it was much better being close enough to see the liveliest foot-shuffling-body-squirming you’ve ever seen a man do while seated (think James Brown strapped to a chair). You can’t help but smile while watching this:
If you’re like I was a year ago, unfamiliar with this oldtimey magic, lemme tell you that it’s the kind of music that induces cheek-soreness and eye-teariness. Seek out Mr. Fairfield or heck, any banjo in your town, and tap your little feet out. OooooWeeee!

Shroomlandia

Posted in Uncategorized on November 4, 2010 by Cristina

Last fall I saw the most sublime vision of mushrooms at a show… but it was in film form. This year, I find myself lucky enough to live along a patch of earth that made this happen, live:


This amazing sidewalk sight made me love my neighborhood even more and was a daily reminder to eat the mushrooms that a forest-loving friend of mine had foraged. Cooked those suckers up into some Hungarian soup and thanked the fungus family for each delicious slurp.