Saturday, November 29, 2008

"F*ck Terrorist!"

With the horror show going on in India, this photo I took in Bali in 04 came to mind. So hell yeah, F those terrorists in India, F the AlQaeda terrorists who are mumbling about going after NY subways, and F those terrorist microbes that gave me food poisoning which forced me to miss Thanksgiving dinner and a hot date tonite, to boot. Bastardos!!!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

UFC - Lesnar vs Couture

Caught the UFC PPV headlined by Randy Couture vs Brock Lesnar. It came down to whether or not the 40something Couture, after a year off, could use his experience and mastery of defying the odds to beat Brock Lesnar, with only 3 UFC fights under his belt. Fan polls picked Couture.
Lesnar weighed in at 265, Couture at 220, so by fight time Lesnar was a good 10-20 lbs heavier. When they entered the octagon, Lesnar looked HUGE, but I was surprised how Couture was able to move him around, using his greco-roman skills to his advantage. But Lesnar's size and strength were too much and the match was stopped after he tagged RC and did the ground and pound.
I think UFC needs to get Fedor Emelianko signed up NOW. That without doubt is the big money dream match down the road. Fedor is a machine, but largely unknown to the casual fans. UFC needs to bring him in and start fighting (and presumably winning) to get people familiar with him. Meanwhile, if Lesnar blows through the pretty limited heavyweight division, people will be clamoring for the big match with Emelianko. This will all take 18-24 months. If they do not sign up Fedor now, and Lesnar blows through the competition leaving only Fedor as a credible challenger, his asking price will be huge - add in that his management is notoriously difficult to bargain with, and it seems a no-brainer that it'll be financially prudent to get him now rather than later.

Friday, November 14, 2008

NY to RI

Good Reason To Keep a Camera Handy: so I'm at my computer which faces the back of the building when I noticed this commotion outside. I looked out and about 20 feet from me was a beautiful (and large) hawk sizing up the menu of pigeon and squirrel. Grabbed the camera and got this shot, I guess its blurry because I shot through the window. Cool though.

Tuesday the Zuke and I did a one night road trip to our alma mater, RI School of Design, in Providence. A beautiful day, but of course upon entering La Prov the sky turned gray and that cold New England air kicked in. We walked all over campus and there's been many a change in 10+ years. Mem Hall is now the painting dept, and the mailroom and supply store are now on No Main St next to the Auditorium. We went to the Refectory for lunch and its completely different, several food stations and lots of "This contains Gluten" and "Vegan" signs - well, it IS art school. Oh, and computers in the cafeteria!! Actually, there were computers everywhere. Carr Haus is still there and cool although laid out differently.
We saw one of our old teachers, Hamid Nowroozi, and everybody had their little Mac laptops in his class. My how times have changed - our desks had xacto knives, rubber cement, cut boards, etc. Also, the school is now 70% female and of those, appr 80% Asian. Zuke was dialing up moving companies within minutes! Had a great dinner at Hemenways, then went to Wild Colonial (by the way, the Hot Club, Spats, Andreas, Geoffs, and Steeple St are all still there!) but like 2 middle aged guys, we had a few then retreated to the hotel, watched a movie and crashed. The Tap Room wasn't open that night, or we would've slogged through our weariness to stop by and hear the ghosts of 80s music echoing in our brains - DJoe Say Dance!
Providence is a great place. I love the old New England homes, slower pace and people are very friendly. I wouldnt mind teaching summer session and renting an apt. for the month there. Oh, they also built a huge mall near the capitol near downtown. The Arcade is closed now and is revamping, but people don't seem to know what the new incarnation will be. Lastly, below is our home from '82-85 at 230 Wickenden Street. When we lived there it was BAD, I actually walked in on 2 robbers in my apartment, but that's a tale for another time. 2nd floor lived Paul, Bill and Raymond and through the years Bif, Johnny W, John, Mark, Leo and Chaka Tong lived with me. Great memories and I took this shot for the boys.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Coffee, Tea, Obama?

Christy, she of the Hot Potato blog fame, sent me this photo. If you scroll down a few posts, you'll see the GOBAMA print I made to sell on EBay as an Obama fundraiser. Now look closely at her photo - it's from one of the ubiquitous breakfast/coffee carts in NYC, this one at 53rd and Madison.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

There's a new Prez in town!

4 years ago I was pouring drinks at my place, 12" DJ Bar, on Essex St in New York City. With each passing hour, the mood turned more blue as more states turned red. It was an unpalatable cocktail of shock, dismay, and sheer disbelief that the country had voted for 4 more years of Bush. There had been hope for John Kerry, but more in an anti-Bush way than a pro-Kerry way.
The only similarity last night had to that election 4 years ago was that I was once again in a bar (on the other side this time) in NYC watching CNN.
The polls were correct this time with Obama winning many states by a small margin, and the map had plenty of blue, this time in stark contrast to the mood of the crowd. A cheer rose when CNN projected Barack Obama as President of the United States! John McCain, being the man that he is, didnt drag it out, he conceded in a classy, positive heads-up way. The crowd at Nice Guy Eddie's (not a regular place of mine, but they have lots of TVs) was diverse, clearly pro-Obama, and wildly enthusiastic. Everyone intently listened to Barack Obama's speech, which was captivating, masterfully delivered, and inspirational. I noticed the looks on the faces of the black people there, it was a mix of joy, relief, and pride - actually, almost everyone there had the same expression, but for them it obviously had a deeper importance.
I don't envy Barack Obama. He's now captain of a ship that's taken on alot of water in a swirling sea with Poseidon Adventure waves. I'm not sure that anyone could successfully steer us through the straits the world is in now, but I am happy to have him at the helm. At one point I paused and noted that we were living through a true moment in history - a decisive one that didnt involve bombs and carnage was a refreshing change. I turned to my friends last night and said, "This is going to sound corny, but I feel proud to be an American right now," to which they replied that they felt the same way. After eight long years, I no longer felt ashamed of our president.
As we left, and walked up Avenue A from Houston St it was like New Year's Eve. I've never seen a reaction to a presidential election like this in my life! People were literally dancing in the street, cars were honking their horns, people were cheering, embracing and their smiles lit up the street more than any streetlight possibly could.