October 2010

Sunday Service

My Halloween Tradition

is to listen to this song, every year since 1993.

This is from Bride’s third album. They are a Christian band from Kentucky.

Happy Holloween                 Kill Yr Idols

Who do you hate you used to love? For instance, I not into Tom Waits no more. Think he should have shanked Screamin’ Jay and moved the fuck on. Anyway. Tell about it.

Random / 6 Comments
October 30th, 2010 / 4:30 pm

How To Explain It To My Parents

How To Explain It To My Parents is a video series featuring conceptual artists explaining their work to their parents.

Here’s an episode with Martijn Hendriks, who did that rad version of Hitchcock’s The Birds where all the birds were erased, and more.

Other episodes are available here. [via Clusterflock]

Film & Web Hype / 4 Comments
October 30th, 2010 / 2:41 pm

{LMC}: A Brief Reflection on Czar Gutierrez’s Bombardier

You can read a PDF of Bombardier to better participate in the discussion. Go buy NY Tyrant. If you would like to have the full PDF of NY Tyrant 8 so you can participate in this month’s LMC discussions, get in touch with me. But still, when you buy a literary magazine, an angel gets its wings.

The New York Tyrant veers closer to a glossy magazine than most literary journals. The stories are punchy, slim, trim and — with an exception or two — quite small. This is a quibble when you like what you are reading and a relief when you do not. Czar Gutierrez did not just leave me wanting, I was left reeling, holding his strange text up to the stuff I usually like — the Cheever, the Amis, the Ellroy — baffled, going through it line by line, trying to understand why I liked it, and how the hell he managed to jerk me around so much I dug pressure prints into each page.

I am quite suspicious of translations. The ones that wash ashore in the U.S. are tend too often to be finger wagging nuggets of exoticism.  The last I remember actually enjoying was Michel Houellebecq. And I should have hated this excerpt of Bombardier — it begins with a trickle of semen dribbling down some poor girl’s thigh, then the camera yanks around to see two planes cross in the sky; then he pulls away further, into pure telemetry and physics… I won’t spoil the rest.  Gutierrez’s control is so splendid, his craft so clean and precise, you can ignore the fact that the man is a D.J., a poet, that his website shrieks techno at you as soon as you open it, and the implied quarrel with American military power and 21st Century capitalism (which, honestly, as a Colombian he has a right to quarrel with — we Americans do meddle a bit down there).

All successful magazine brands sell not just stories, but a platonic ideal of taste; a lifestyle, an aesthetic or the appearance of being informed. Literary journals are no different. Each time I pick one up I expect a throbbing, sizzling smorgasbord of discoveries — and for once, in the New York Tyrant, I think I found what I was looking for.

Literary Magazine Club / 11 Comments
October 30th, 2010 / 2:00 pm

I Love Sarah Jane (Happy Halloween Eve!)

Random / 2 Comments
October 30th, 2010 / 9:56 am

Don’t write all over the goddamn books please.

I hate blurbs on book covers, at least put that shit on the back if it’s all you can do you think you have to to sell your shit and maybe you’re right, I’m no good at selling it. A terrible telemarketer, I would probably make a mediocre regional fertilizer salesman, which is to say I would be shitty at selling shit. So you go on building bridges and stuff. I mean I get it. It’s silly but I’m better at burning them britches. What I like is to consume my brain food from a plain colored box, like an Oreo milkshake, or expensive yogurt the way Muslims frown on figure drawing in the mosque. I think that’s rad. Frown away Mohammad. Patterns are whatever. Pyramids are when. They are good to think on I think. I like to gaze at them and think on Gawd oh gawd the stars the trees. But my kind of cover is a naked Knopf hardbound from the 60s. Maybe I’m boring and probably it’s vain but I don’t want other people’s opine opinions influencing my internal dialogue, not until I’ve digested my lunch which is to say eaten the text the film the album the thing and pooped out an opinion of some kind, however odd it might look oblong and oblique, not until I’ve had time to play with it to prod it to scrape and slice it beneath the blade of my tongue. But I like first for a thing to be in space like a rock in the ground pulsing tight 600 million miles a fucking hour going this is True btw, and then to have it there in my mouth in my ears my eyes huge like a fresh batch of fungus, a bunch of firecrackers going off in my bulb my skull my head. My favorite thing said in French is J’ai mal à la tête. To think of it rolls off the tongue like butter on bread.


Behind the Scenes & Mean / 5 Comments
October 29th, 2010 / 10:51 pm

Last Thing I’ll Do Before I Die

Music & Random / 6 Comments
October 29th, 2010 / 8:08 pm

Obituary: n+1

Shit, guys. Apparently n+1 died this week, too. They wrote that thing about learning and college or whatever, right?

(Frankly, those guys were kind of douchey and we’d forgotten to check in on them. Dropped the ball. Yeah, so.)

I don’t know. Maybe send a card to Ben Kunkel’s step-uncle.


I know I’m supposed to find out when they first published and all that, but seriously. Who gives a shit.

Mean / 17 Comments
October 29th, 2010 / 7:34 pm

The Tyrant and I carried Mean Week over to Vice:


Seven Obituaries: Brevity, HTMLGIANT, Birds (in poetry), and more!

Mr. Shameless S. Promo (???? – ????) was found slumped over his Apple iPad, dead from a Twitter overdose on Tuesday morning. Friends of the deceased have confirmed his last few days were spent “tweeting his little ass feathers off like Tweetie on a coke binge” over having landed an interview with a D-list, female lit blog personality. In happier times, Mr. Promo could often be found regaling comment threads all over the online indie lit scene with off-topic anecdotes about his forthcoming book, like the time he tried to get a blurb from Dennis Cooper (“and he goes, send me the naked JPGs and we’ll talk, ha ha!”) or how the publishers that dropped him were such useless incompetents (“Man, I’m flogging this goddamn book all by myself. But I mean, if I don’t do it, who will, right?!”) A well-known online lit journal editor familiar with the deceased was quoted as saying, “finally the hail of submissions ranging from the inadequate to the outright offensive that has been raining down on us like napalm since this tool discovered Submishmash will cease.” Mr. Promo is survived by his official author website, complete with a “personal blog” which is in actuality a list of live reading dates along with hundreds of links to his writing in various low-ranking publications, including articles that pretend a service to the community but are in fact mere justifications for his annoying and ineffective marketing practices, as well as his Vimeo book trailer, quirky interviews in several group lit blogs, and a Facebook fan page with approximately 35 fans (mostly spammers). In lieu of flowers the family have requested pledges to their Kickstarter project to help them publish Mr. Promo’s oeuvre, including selected Gmail chats and tweets. A writer and close family friend said, “okay so with the family doing it, it will be a little like self-publishing, but waaay better because he’s dead, so it’s like, posthumous and stuff.” –Ani Smith



Mean / 26 Comments
October 29th, 2010 / 3:51 pm