Tuesday, July 31, 2007

I'm a Sailor Peg, and I Lost My Leg

Bill Cosby was wrong. I know the idea of reverse psychology wasn't created by the man, but it was from him that, as a youth, I first learned the concept. So did Theo.

On this occasion, my (over a) week-long hiatus was of my own making, rather than the efforts of those who would seek to destroy Herr Sprakels. PK is neither talkin loud nor saying nuthin (please excuse the double negative, for the Godfather's sake), and I was -- still am -- being as hands off as my unmistakably sexy contributors, in hope that someone, anyone (are you there, Idealjetsam? It's me, Sparkles), would seize the mantle, carpe the diem...do it till you're satisfied.

The dog days of summer, I'm sure things are tough all over. (Word to Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong.) I'm sure everyone's got a job to do; everyone's got to move and groove (I will kiss your pinky ring if you caught that reference). Myself, I'm hotter than the Globetrotters in the Bahamas. Fuck, summer, you're only good at one thing: women's fashion. And that's only by default, rather than any concerted effort.

Myself, on Sunday I bought a Nintendo DS Lyte. My favorite jam back in the day was NDS for precedent. I haven't had this much fun since I slept with your neighbor's mistress. Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin is doper than Chris Benoit on angel dust; Super Mario Bros. are back like the lumbar region; Lego Star Wars II is my arrestedly developed wet dream; and Brain Age 2, like Albus Dumbledore, makes me ironically content with being both stupid AND lazy.

So if you don't see me, it doesn't mean I saw you first. It means I'm holed up in Chez Sparkles (Lite), mastering the finer art of 21st Century passive-agressive misanthropy. (Or masturing the finer art of 21st Century passive-aggressive misogony, aka porn.)

But I couldn't sit idle and not comment on the trade which will send Kevin Garnett to the Celtics. There's giddy, and then there's Jesus Allen-Paul "Truth Crushed to Earth Shall Rise Again" Pierce-KG-level giddy. I'm doing backflips onto a bed of nails right now, and it hurts so good.

I bet Tim Donaghy is, too. (Pun Nintended...I mean intended.)

Peep it; I have crazy visions, son: picture KG and Ray in the iconic picture below, with Danny Ainge far left. THAT'S THE CELTICS MEDIA GUIDE RIGHT THERE!

PS - Am I the only one who finds it a little weird that two young prospects named Green won't be playing ball for the Celts in '07/08, but WILL be playing for teams with similar colors? Is an NBA aesthetics style guide manipulating these moves? Conspiracy!

Friday, July 20, 2007

Back to Back Rhymin' - Three Times Dope - Ep 2

[The Saga Continues]

Spark: Will Spike Lee ever win an Oscar? Smart money says no, but I say yes. (The Milwaukee Bucks, by the way, are totally going to win the 2008 NBA Finals, thus sparking World War IV) If he does, it better not be of the Lifetime Achievement variety, like the one the Academy gave Robert Altman.

Denz: An Oscar? For most best dramatic sideline performance during a Knicks game, sure.

I wonder, though. I enjoyed Inside Man, but no one would have considered it Oscar material. I think Lee has evolved from a punchy and talented upstart to a polished and mature moviemaker. However, looking at his recent catalogue, he seems to have polished off that edge required for greatness. Know what I mean?

It's an interesting question. Maybe the next stage in his career will see both sides of Lee converge into something worthy of Oscar consideration. That'll always be dependant on a great, great story though.

But you're right, you can book a Lifetime Achievement if it doesn't eventuate.

Fuzon: Sorry Spike, but you're not going to see an Oscar in the near, distant, or before-the-singularity future. Summer of Sam was entertaining, but it still wasn't that good.

Denz: Now, there's a question - who do you think would present it to him? And what kind of film does he need to make to avoid the Lifetime of Mediocrity award?

Spark: It's hard for me to answer this question, because I'm a full-fledged Spike Lee homer. 25th Hour is a great film, one which I would say ranks among the 25 (50?) best films of the decade. And despite its unevenness, Summer of Sam is another fave. Don't ask me about She Hate Me, Girl 6, Inside Man, and some others, because I haven't come close to peeping every work in the guy's oeuvre -- but the man is prolific, and every now and then will drop a gem on 'em. He Got Game is dope like contraband (as any film with Ray Allen and Chasey Lain in its credits ought to be), as are Clockers, Crooklyn, Malcolm X, Jungle Fever, and his magnum opus, Do the Right Thing. Me being lazy (that's what happens when I stay up all night watching seasons 1 through 8 of America's Next Top Model), I'd say all he needs to do to nab that statue is remake Do the Right Thing with an Hispanic-immigrants-to-the-US slant. Cast John "Luigi" Leguizamo as Radio Rodriguez, not now but right now.

As for who would present the award, Quentin Tarantino immediately leaps to mind, if only for the awkwardness it would present. Some other candidates include Denzel Washington, Danny Aiello, Rosario Dawson, and Nancy Lang. But -- and here's why I should produce the Oscars -- the ultimate presenter would be Chuck D. Can you imagine an octogenarian Chuck waxing poetic on the career of Sir Spike? My life will truly be fulfilled the day I witness that.

And if not Chuck, it better as fuck be Reggie Miller.

Denz: Well, that was uncalled for.

Fuzon: In my estimation, there are two obvious choices for presenter: Shermon Hemsley or Rosie Perez, the caveat being that Perez would have to present the award to Spike topless, or at least in a damp, white T-shirt. Don't mistake me for a misogynist, though, for as per Kermo's desire, Hemsley would have to show up topless, pantless, or dressed up as a giant, castoff tampon. Whatever, dude.

Spark: Next question -- Can beatdowns of the critical persuasion be handed out to anyone who cites Digable Planets' Blowout Comb as his favorite hip-hop album? Hey, I margarinally* liked them back in the day, but c'mon. That's like claiming Shock G/Humpty Hump** is the G.O.A.T.

Fuzon: You guys know that I can't comment upon hip-hop with any credibility. Sure, I know Shock G/Humpty Hump, but that's not saying much. I certainly agree that Blowout Comb is a far cry from the ultimate album, but then again, I thought Arrested Development was kind of cool.

Denz: I seem to remember my older brother getting into Blowout Comb - I didn't. Actually, who said this anyway? When I hear things like this, I make a mental note to disregard anything that person says in the future. I think we can safely say this about this person's opinion. Release the hounds.

Speaking of which, I find a lot of hip-hop tracks/albums age woefully. I know that part of it is me getting older and the lyrics I used to bob my head now make me shake my head, nevertheless the classics stay classic. I think a good measure of a songĂ­s longevity is its capacity to be turned into spoken word (or indeed any other), and still retain legitimacy. My Q -- What are five tracks old hip hop tracks that would definitely hit as spoken word?

Spark: I gotta pick just five? OK, here's what immediately springs to mind:

i) My Melody by Eric B and Ra. I could also go with Microphone Fiend, which Rage Against the Machine proved can transcend the hip-hop genre to sexy results. (Also, my gut instinct was to pick PE's Black Steel in the Hour of Chaos, if only to hear someone such as Saul Williams elocute "And to my rescue? The S1Ws.)

ii) Take a Look Around by Masta Ace. Already a remake of The Revolution Will Not Be Televised by Gil-Scott Hero(i)n, shit deserves and update.

iii) War by Dilated Peoples. Five years is old enough, right?****** Again, this is almost spoken word in its delivery anyway, but, like The Revolution Will Not Be Televised, could be freaked to include mention of the Iraq "conflict" and Stringer Bell vs. Avon Barksdale.

iv) Buddy by De La Soul. I'm tempted to do this myself, record it, and post it on YouTube. I don't need much convincing.

v) Wisdom Body by Raekwon (feat. Ghostface Killah). Swish.

(While you're here, I will spit in the mouth of anyone who claims Cuban Linx is not a better album than Liquid Swords.)

Fuzon: Speaking of Rage Against the Machine, I'd almost be willing to listen to Darkness as spoken word.

Spark: Who's the handsomest baller in the NBA? As much as I love Dwyane Wade, I have to pick Damon Stoudamire. Because I love black men with blue eyes***. That question just shattered your gaydar, I know, but I don't care. In fact, I'm tempted to create a Top 25 Sexiest NBA Players post. I don't give a what; I'm comfortable with my sexuality. I had sex today. With a woman. And it doesn't matter that she was synthetic.

Denz: I told you not to drink alone, didn't I?

My boss thinks Zo is a good looking chap. She's convinced he'll have a movie career when he retires. When she speaks like this, I don't know how to react. That's how I feel right now, Spark.

I'm going to go with David Lee, but that's probably just Stockholm Syndrome more than an overwhelming need to be impregnated by him (also, not racist). If I had to have a man date though, I'd pick Gilbert Arenas. He seems like a nice guy.

I eagerly anticipate the PK Draft on this topic. I'm going to spend the rest of the day trading my draft picks to Kermo for women with protracted divorce settlements and bad knees.

Fuzon: Gary Payton, baby! I'd have his baby, if the little baller could roll itself out of my ass. Okay, not quite, but he's such a foxy bitch that you'd have to give it a moment of contemplation, barring hormonal inclination and whatnot.

Denz: That's the possibly the most wrong thing I have read.

Aiight, so when are we going to do the Kimochi Draft? At the moment, most of our hits come from Meg White, Allison Stokke, Chloe Sevigny and Nancy Yang so we'd be pitching to some converted batters. Nevertheless, categories: what would we run?

Spark: Do NOT make Allison Stokke a sex symbol! For my part, I promise to keep double-entendre "pole vaulting" jokes exclusive to when I'm in close company with like-minded, depraved idiots, and not on the Internet (check your email).

As for the Kimochi Draft, I'm conflicted whether I want to go ahead with it in the near future (say it ain't so! Word to Weezer). See, I've found religion...

Pulling your leg of course, but if we do it, we have to do it right. And these days I haven't been able to -- for various reasons -- scout talent, as it were. I'm scared that my first pick might be Caprice (or, worse, Nate Robinson).

Here's my idea: instead of our original plan of blondes, brunettes, redheads and amputees (word to Heather Mills), let's just go with features, regardless of hair color, race, age, fame (finally, a chance to spotlight the part-time girl at my local 7-11!), etc.

Therefore, I propose that the Kimochi Draft's categories include:

  • bust (I think it's clear where my libido's allegiance lies)
  • S-line (the whole Korea thing; gotta represent, at least sometimes)
  • lips/smile (the face is too broad a category and needs to be broken down, for the sake of the children; as such, I will stab you if you pick Kim Ah-Jung in the teeth department)
  • legs
  • Nancy Lang
Let me know your thoughts.

Fuzon: Yeah, I have some thoughts, namely that temporal relativity should be encouraged when drafting (I prefer to consider it impressment, myself). Sure, P.J. Soles isn't looking too hot these days, but at one point she was all the rage. In addition, does anyone recall the Golden Voyage of Sinbad? I do, and Caroline Munro is in the club. Disagreement is acceptable, especially if you don't mind losing an ear a la the Bite Fight.

Bonus Query: Wasn't Ray Harryhausen the man?

Denz: Wait, are we talking 1970s Harryhausen?

Spark: Have you ever seen those packs of tiny -- like 75mL -- beer cans they sell in Japan? Who are those marketed towards? The easiest answer would be children, but I don't think even the Japanese are weird enough to do that. I guess they sell, though, because yesterday, in an imported foods store, I saw a bunch of them, eight per pack. What, someone has a hankering for beer, but only a sip or two worth? I honestly don't get it. Maybe they're bought as a hair-of-le-chien hangover remedy, but if that's the case, those crazy Japanese should just do what I do and buy a whole 350mL can. Or twelve.

Denz: I think-

Fuzon: Not so fast, Ohno. Before you spin a divine yarn, I just have to say that I dig the miniature cans of beer. Originally, I considered them abominations, and fair enough, but then I noticed that they fit neatly into the cup-caddies on the treadmills at my gym. Righteous. A particular Japanese brewery used to -and perhaps still does- market a can of Sapporo that had a resealable cap, designed for a person with a 'busy, on-the-go' lifestyle; and that fits me like a Speedo.

Denz: He's punchy today. The beers are clearly for those little performing monkeys that wear bellhop suits. What are those little guys called again? Either that or Japanese salarymen have worked out that 75ml is all it takes to make a highschool girl open to pers... wait, we're on a proto-feminist kick at the moment, right? Forget everything I said.

Can't you see the marketing genius here? The best part of a beer is the moment one opens the can and takes that first sip. That's pretty much all you can do with this little can. A slice of heaven you can slip into your suit pocket. Pop into the commodes at work during afternoon tea and swallow a 75ml shot of ... *cough* make that consume a microbrew. Genius.

I like the idea of it making you feel like a giant as you cradle the puny human's can of ale in your massive hand.

On the flipside, I had a birthday party in Seoul a few years ago. Some guy, whom I didn't know, came along with some mutual friends. He called me over and presented me with a massive can of beer. The thing had to hold several litres of amber waves of yay. He said it was a gift for letting him attend my party. I was touched. Seriously, one of the best gifts I have ever received and I don't even remember the cat's name.

I don't have a question, but how does that story make you feel?

Spark: As tingly as Chris Webber's knee.

Fuzon: Like emboldened shit, if that makes any sense. On the one hand, I feel invigorated, which is good, but such emotions supplicate that I take a leap of faith from a window at the nearest Super 8 motel. It should've been a win-win situation.

* Intentional. Foul.
** They're the same person, kids. And Santa Claus isn't real. (Neither is female ejaculation...at least I think so. I'll keep conducting research until I know for sure. Look for the results of my study to be published in the New England Journal of Medicine sometime around 2057.)
*** Almost as much as I love Chinese girls with green eyes.

****** I better not get misquoted on that one.

Sex and Bears [sic]

As I told K-Hot the other weekend, a few hours before he drunkenly stumbled out of Cheers and wound up Ahia Njoku knows where (anma?), PK is hitting on all cylinders these days: the posts are on a higher level than years passed (directionless nostalgia, shitty poetry, and hotdogs, RIP), the team is cooler than Fisherman's Friend, and Denz's redesign of the site gives your girl the vapors.

I am a proud father.

It wouldn't have been this way were it not for the contributions, both materially and literary, of my blessed co-conspirators. Check the resume, the site was pretty much dead in the water for the earlier part of this year; but tenacity kept hope alive, hope gave birth to redemption, and the rest is history in the making*. A bold leap forward, in 2007 and beyond, Psychedelic Kimchi is finna knock off your collective socks. Envision and execute.

Please don't mistake those sentiments as a delusion of grandeur, however. I realize that I am a legend in my own mind, and I also understand that, for most, PK is not an easy read. (I believe "organized confusion" was the definition I gave K-Hot many moons ago.) But -- word to Milk D -- I don't care. I've never been a huge fan of David Lynch, but whenever I watch one of his films/Twin Peaks, I ignore all of the abstruse decorations -- and there are many for that worthy -- and let my mind soak in the effortless wonder of a man doin' his own dang. Word to Mike Gee.

Taking of these cape and tights for a second, I'm my own worst critic. Really. I will concede, I've never met a comma I didn't like; I've abused the semi-colon so much that several lawsuits are pending; if I ever have a son -- that I know about -- I'm going to name him Dash; I use more brackets** than the entire world's population does every March; similes are tossed about hapazardly, like leprechauns playing volleyball with a hand grenade; I am oftentimes repetitive; I am oftentimes repetitive; my humor, when it isn't crude, insulting, or esoteric, is usually unfunny; my seemingly-cheerful manner belies a tortured heart; and I tend to use the same fragmented style to end paragraphs. Word to myself.

Seasons change, but, like that time you and your brother asked your mom whom she would save if you were both drowning, Psychedelic Kimchi switching up its mode is ridiculous, preposterous, out of the question***.

How could you ask such a question, Philip?

Ride or die.

*I'm the Arthur Dove of this blog shit.

** and asterisks

*** Unless, that is, I get money and fame, in which case I'm going to sell out faster than Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows will tomorrow. Cocaine is expensive!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Back to Back Rhymin - 3 Feet High and Risin' - Ep 1

Spark: M. Night Shyamalan's Signs: cinematic sublimity or egregiously trite pap? I've always been of the opinion of the former, but I watched it again today, and I have to admit that it's lost the teeniest bit of its lustre for me. Maybe it's Shyamalan's 2 follow-up disappointments that have tainted it, or perhaps its what Mel Said, but I'm starting to see flaws previously unnoticed. And I've always been able to get around the stupidity of the "aliens invading Earth when their major weakness is water" plot hole (wouldn't the water vapor in the air alone harm them?), so that's saying something.

Denz: I first saw Signs, well the first 30 minutes anyway, on a bootlegged CAM dvd that I picked up from some toothless gent in BKK. Something about the CAM quality made it strangely compelling, but pretty much unwatchable. If anything, it acted as a bit of a teaser for me (much in the same way Cloverfield has for generation iPhone -- I am a pioneer, after all). I was hyped to see the real deal in cinemascope. I'm sure you'd agree that Signs was definitely a film that had to be experienced in the cinema. Watched on the big screen it was spooky as fuck. Even the opening credits/music were genius.

One thought occurred to me when I watched the film. If sci-fi/horror movies had continued on the same basic path of 40s and 50s cinema, Signs is what such a movie would have looked like in 2000. Unfortunately, the 70s and 80s altered sci-fi/horror forever. To me, Signs was a sci-fi throwback jersey. And a polished one at that.

I don't understand the Shyamalan hate. The man makes beautiful cine. I haven't seen The Village, but I have seen The Lady in the Water. I'm sure Lady probably fuelled the hate, but to me it was a great story (and fun). And that's just it, really. Shyamalan makes simple and beautiful movies. A ghost story (Sixth), a comic book (Unbreakable), an alien movie (Signs) and a fairytale (Lady). I wonder if people will come around. Doubtful, people are idiots (see iPhone).

I understand that it might be losing some of its gloss, particularly because Gibson is becoming as painful to watch retrospectively as Thomas Cruise, but don't be too hard on the old joint. Most things fall apart after repeated viewings. Look at Britney.

As for plotholes, put it this way: the aliens probably didn't have much to choose from in terms of habitable planets, and Earth was probably it. This isn't without precedent. Remember Alien Nation? The sea was battery acid to those coneheads, yet they came here.

Actually, now that I think about it, there is a more plausible explanation. Interstellar migration is probably handled by the alien's equivalent bureaucracy, right? I'm sure the initial policy was well conceived, probably at a cabinet level, but the execution would have been handled by low-level clerks and mid-management at the agency level. The water thing was probably overlooked by some underpaid alien in a cardigan. Errors like that are never going to be identified until the policy is implemented (military incursion), and by then it's too late (because the army is stupid). Explains it all, really.

Fuzon (Kmart): I cast my vote for Signs as 'egregiously trite pap', if only because because Zel claimed that the augmentation of the sci-fi/horror genre, caused by the 70s and 80s, was an unfortunate situation. Yeah, Dawn of the Dead was terrible, and let's not forget the remake of the Thing. What the fuck was Carpenter thinking? Long live the bald, deformed man that besieged the hapless scientists of the original.

I know that some folks prefer their aliens with down syndrome and an aversion to water, but I'll stick to things that are actually, at least mildly, frightening.

Denz: Oh, K-mart.
So, Spark, where do you stand on Unbreakable? I am yet to meet anyone who thinks it is a brilliant film? Is it one of his better films, or am I a rampaging fanboy?

Spark: Oh, Unbreakable is unquestionably Shyamalan's best work (not including the script he wrote for Stuart Little, which, as far as screenplays go, is only eclipsed by Casablanca). Dude could churn out crap for the remainder of his career -- if he still has one -- and nothing will ever taint that mutha. It's a fanboy's wet dream: the ultimate superhero origin story. In fact, I wouldn't hate on MNS if he pulled a Kevin Smith and reverted back to the tried-and-true formula with a sequel. The scene with Willis and his son in the weight room makes me giddy every time I watch it, as does Samuel Jackson knocking comic books around with

(extreme prejudice)

his cane. Fuck it, after I finish typing this up I'm throwing that badboy on the DVD, player****.

Getting back to Signs for a sec, I completely agree with you vis a vis the old skool vibe of the flick (and it does kick more ass when watched in the theater; I watched it twice during its opening weekend, and the audience's shrieks only got more intense -- thus more pleasurable for me -- the second viewing), perfectly encapsulated in the scene where Merrill visits the army recruitment office. What bugged me when I watched it again on Sunday was the contrived and/or overly sentimental stuff, such as Gibson telling his kids what their mother said when they were born, Joaquin Phoenix telling Mel he never wants to see that look in his eyes again, and the "I can't hear my children" line.

But you know what, I can still dig all that (the "children" line is right up my alley; I'd probably write something similar myself), and for me Signs remains a masterpiece, despite its numerous flaws in logic and storytelling. BECAUSE OF its numerous flaws in logic and storytelling, actually (the Forest Gump Corollary; by the way, Idealjetsam is giving me the middle finger right now*****)

Fuzon: Hold up, Spark. I'm the one giving you the middle finger right now. Shit, I mean, actually, I was throwing up my index finger, but you know what I meant by the infantile gesture. Furthermore, let's not get back to Signs, as Unbreakable is where it's at, with regard to Shyamalan's body of work. I first saw Unbreakable on DVD in the summer of 2001. Seriously, I'll admit that I was behind the times. The thing is, during that particular period of my life, I was working third shift, packaging GPS components for a major corporation with government financing. The job was awesome, especially when one considers that in an eight-point-five hour shift, you had two fifteen minute breaks, a thirty minute lunch, another twenty minutes off for when the computer terminal servers were rebooting, and then an additional thirty minutes of bathroom time due to shift overlap (the day-shifters were union, and they'd be damned if they let us tell them when to get on the station). What I'm trying to say is that I was damn tired throughout those months, and I had rented the film one morning after work, and it was so good that I had elected to remain -wide- awake, insanely enamored with Shyamalan's masterwork. I'm also attempting the contrast that with Signs. Would I have stayed up to watch that, the Sixth Sense, or the Village? Fuck no.

Spark: It's funny, TMH hates Children of Men, IDJ hates Dostoevsky, K-Hot hates PJ's King Kong remake, yet they all have something in common: an inclination towards altruism rather than cynicism. That's what Signs has in spades, and it's why I love it (also why I love Crash, another film heavy on the altruism vibe). Also why I love you, pickle.

Fuzon: Altruism rather than cynicism? Is there a third option, like 'Addicted to sausage gravy and biscuits'?

Denz: I hated Crash, though. Circle of life.

Spark: What are the odds that Willis will appear in a third Shyamalan film?

Fuzon: Slim, I say, as in there is less than a twenty percent chance. Demi, possibly, as she's still smarting from Striptease. I bet she would have made a positively delightful 'Lady in the Water'.

Spark: Shut up. To conclude this thought in a totally PK way, here's a quote from James Joyce regarding the works of Dostoevsky:

"Tolstoy admired him but he thought that he had little artistic accomplishment or mind. Yet, as he said, 'he admired his heart', a criticism which contains a great deal of truth, for though his characters do act extravagantly, madly, almost, still their basis is firm enough underneath. The Brothers Karamozov made a deep impression on me. He created some unforgettable scenes. Madness you may call it, but therein may be the secret of his genius. I prefer the word exaltation, exaltation which can merge into madness, perhaps. In fact all great men have had that vein in them; it was the source of their greatness; the reasonable man achieves nothing."


In Episode 2 - Spike Lee, Kimochi and C-Webb's knee.
**** Intentionally-misplaced commas are the new asterisks.
***** Psychedelic Kimchi is like a box of chocolates: you never know what you're gonna get.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Don't Mess With the Purple Tape

In a day or so, Denzini is going to toss up a collaborative post between him, me, and a stripper named La Toya. I won't give anything away, except for that somewhere in that communicado of brilliance I make mention of the indisputable, undeniable fact that Only Built For Cuban Linx is better than Liquid Swords.

Now, Liquid Swords is certainly a great album, make no mistake. It's the Wu-Tang Clan's second greatest solo jawn; but not only is Cuban Linx the best Wu solo effort, it is the best Wu album period, including 36 Chambers.

I suppose I need some quantifiable proof to back up this claim, so let's break it down, compost style.


Sure, aliases and mafioso posturing were not unknown to hip-hop in the years leading up to 1995, but Cuban Linx sparked a trend in the genre that is still present to this day. Don't blame Rae and Co. for the shitiness of what would come after (that's like blaming Einstein for the atomic bomb), because at the time it was a bold step, much in the same way NWA's Straight Outta Compton was the tipping point for the nascent gangster rap movement. Cuban Linx took the Wu's signature kung-fu-inspired style (also not unheard of before 36 Chambers), and flipped it, Galvatron style, in such a way that, afterwards, Shaw Brothers samples and dusty drums seemed played out in comparison.

That November, Liquid Swords would cement the Wu-Tang collective as the rulers of east coast hip-hop. The perfect soundtrack to the chilly, crime-infested streets of New Yawk, Liquid Swords brought back the rugged feel -- for the most part -- of the Clan's early years. But even on Liquid Swords can Cuban Linx's influence be felt on such tracks as 'Investigative Reports' and 'Killa Hills 10304'. Truthfully, while those songs are dope, they don't jibe with the album's theme. They sounded like filler, and they still do (the best motherfucking filler this side of free blowjob bread at the Outback Steakhouse, mind you). While 'Gold' is a gritty narrative of paper chasing in an urban setting, the former aforementioned tracks set a scope that the weight of the album can't balance, like elephants and ants on see-saws. I love Liquid Swords like I love my dick size (influence!), but what lasting impression -- like cuts to flesh -- has it had on hip-hop or any other genre apart from Seth Rogan's T-shirt in The 40-Year-Old Virgin?

RZA's Edge: Cuban Linx


Don't judge a [CD] by its and all that, but when you listen to both albums as much as I have, the covers become indelibly stamped in your conscience, so much so that it's impossible to hear or think about either without the image of smoke billowing from Rae's dome or the GZA choppin' off heads at a wonky perspective angle popping into mind. The color scheme of Liquid Swords, despite the mediocre Denys Cowan artwork, is effective enough, but it's the the awesomely tweaked Wu 'W' into a 'G' that cements it. By comparison, Cuban Linx's cover looks as though it would be better served as an inner-cover photo, lazy as it appears, were it not for the smoke on Raekwon's head and the Holy Grail lampin' in the forefront. By the way, whoever was puffing a blunt behind Rae when the pic was taken deserves royalties. Lots of.

RZA's Edge: tie


GZA has, and always will be, the best lyricist in the Clan. That's why he's the Genius. "Weak, like clock radio speakers." "Smoked on the set like Brandon Lee, blown out the frame like Pan-Am Flight 103." The perfect metaphor that is 'I Gotcha Back.' I can go on.

However, what Rae and Ghost did, lyrically, on Cuban Linx is nothing short of phenomenal. I've always had (more than) a feeling the two, avec associates, were coked the fucked up while composing their verses, but they work so perfectly that their words, while complicated, make sense (eventually -- everything's eventual). Contrast that with what would come later (I'm pretty sure U-God is still in a stupor, speaking in tongues), and it ain't hard to tell that, for one album, lightning truly was caught in a bottle. And Nas's verse on 'Verbal Intercourse' takes it to Jupiter.

RZA's Edge: Cuban Linx


In the summer of 1995 I was alone at home while my parents, brother, and sister were on vacation. Copping Cuban Linx coincided with me meeting my first true (human) love. That November, still dating the same girl, her dog bit me on my left calf while we were making out (with the girl, not the dog). I remember that 'Cold World' was playing on her boombox. Muzack was playing in the hospital waiting room as I sat, waiting, for 32 stitches.

(I don't want to spoil things, but it didn't work out.)

RZA's Edge: Cuban Linx (Can it be that it was all so simple then?)


4th Chamber excluded, if you believe RZA stepped his game up between the release of the two albums you're trippin'.

RZA's EDGE: Cuban Linx


'Rainy Days' is hard to sit through, for sure (it's no 'Try to Do Me,' mind you); no bad tracks on Liquid swords, only bad track listings.

RZA's Edge: Liquid Swords


And the winner is: c'mon, like I have to tell you. Don't make me spit in your mouth.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

As You Like It, or Player's Choice

At our last Psychedelic Kimchi staff meeting deep in the bowels of the Hall of Doom, our most-recent staff addition was heard to exclaim, "(I'm) still trying to figure out what this blog is *all about*. I have yet to identify a unifying theme aside from basketball."

To which IJ and I guffawed, as we are the major detractors of all things bouncy and orange in this motley crew. But it did beg the question: Just what is Psychedelic Kimchi all about? Can it really be about Korea if only three out of six of us live there? Can it really be about basketball if basketball sucks? Can it really be about comic books if most of us don't know how to read and have to dictate posts through our significant others?

We looked to Sparkles, as the progenitor, to try to define it. "PK is about truth. PK is about art. PK is about beauty. PK is about the things in life that bring us together, not those that divide and debase us. PK is like the U.S. Supreme Court's definition of obscenity. You know it when you see it."

"But Spark," we protested, "that's not a definition at all. And besides, what about when the truth is harsh and ugly? How can PK be about both truth and beauty?"

"Beauty is truth, truth beauty," he said, "that is all Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know."

But we knew he stole that from somewhere, so we ignored him.

"PK is about giving voice to the oppressed and bringing justice to the masses," ventured Jetsam. "Whenever we see inequity, we call folks on it. Whenever we see social inequality, we're there to bring it to light. Whenever some douche bag with a blog is acting the fool, we're there to sic 'em."

But it was agreed that calling out every moron with a blog was far too big a scope for one Web site, even one as epic as PK.

"PK is about the mythology and archetypes of the modern world," said K. "And about drinking way too much in Budang."

But it was agreed that, while drinking way too much in Bundang was definitely a major motif of PK, it could not be called the theme or subject of it.

"PK is the zeitgeist of our times, which is why all of you bastards need to post more," said Denz, but we all agreed that that was way too heavy a trip to take, and that if we accepted such a truth we would indeed have to post more, which none of us was ready for.

"PK is the metaphorical search for the white whale," I offered. "It's spending your life hunting for that one perfect post." No one even bothered to comment on my suggestion, which was perhaps the most cutting blow of all.

"Psychedelic Kimchi," a small voice came from the corner, "is not so easily defined." We all turned to see a little girl sitting in the lotus position by the door. None of us had seen her enter, but later, after much discussion, it was generally agreed that as she continued to speak she slowly began to levitate ever-so-slightly off the ground.

"Psychedelic Kimchi is the alpha and the omega," she continued. "The Yin and the Yang. You get one post about Korea and one post about comic books. One post about basketball and one post about MMA. Self-important blathering, inside jokes, and drunken posting are often the norm. References to pop culture are made that are so oblique that oftentimes even other writers on the site don't get them, let alone the two regular readers. Asterisks are plentiful. Cussing is plentiful. Content is often sacrificed for style. Meaning is often sacrificed for a quick laugh. Clear communication is often sacrificed for tangents diverse and purposeless. Psychedelic Kimchi," she concluded "is not about anything. Rather, Psychedelic Kimchi is 'bout it 'bout it."

And there it was. The original inspiration for Psychedelic Kimchi had returned to show us the way, like some mythical christ-figure returned to the faithful. And none to soon, I might add. It inspired us all so greatly that we immediately pledged to post more often than once a month.

The little girl rolled her eyes in incredulity.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Psychedelic Kimochi - NYT Edition

Back when I lived in Seoul, I grabbed the International Herald Tribune pretty much everyday. I don't imagine that I read it much, but it felt good to have (semi) reputable journalism in my hands during my long commute. Afterall, I was living in the land of the Chosun Ilbo. Shit, I was happy to read anything that didn't endorse the restorative effects of pickled cabbage or speak of the perils of fan related injury and mortality.

As my cohorts in Asia can attest, the IHT also comes with the New York Times crossword. Call me a geek if you must, you judgmental faggot, but I loved that crossword ... at least early on in the week.

You see, come Monday, I'd hop the subway, jump to the crossword and hit words faster than Craig Hodges hit threes. But by the end of the week, I couldn't hit the side of a barn and my brain was deader than Kurt Vonnegut. (Too soon?). I attributed the weekly demise in my (f)lexicon to occupational fatigue and/or poorly refrigerated milk. Whatever the cause, it frustrated the hell out of me.

It wasn't until I picked up 'Me Talk Pretty One Day' by David Sedaris that I discovered the NYT crossword was designed to become progressively more difficult throughout the course of the week. Monday the easiest, culminating in Friday/Saturday as the most complex. Jesus saves, Mr Sedaris, I wasn't becoming progressively more retarded.

It was a pleasant surprise, but an uncomfortable one insofar as it was a revelation left entirely to chance. See, this information was conveniently unavailable anywhere in the vicinity of the damned crossword. Shibboleths, see? Honestly, New York is the bane of my fucking existence.

Back here in Oz, I have no easy access to the NYT crossword. I'm left to the hack crosswords in our local rags. Thanks to the NYT, I can finish the average crossword in minutes. I feel like Rainman. However it is a bittersweet victory, to be sure, because the real crossword sits out there in silence, mocking me. Calling me a first down, six letters, to stunt development.

I'll be back. In the meantime, I really do applaud anyone who can complete the Friday crossword in one sitting. I also fear for that person's wellbeing.

What does all this have to do with Misa Campo? That's easy, it's a Monday.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Primatene Mist is Afraid of My Lungs

Psychedelic fucking Lazarus.


Wednesday, July 11, 2007

In My Four-Cornered Room, Staring at Candles

"Shut up or I'll kick you!"

-- Ivan Karamazov

Remember the twist at the end of The Village? I don't, because I've never seen it -- but I heard it's pretty stupid. Frosted hair-level stupid.


I'll make sure to get some tomorrow after I hit the free clinic in Itaewon. In the means, have a butter tart. They're fucking amazing.


Why you're "here yet not here," you mean.


To get a haircut? I know, I need one like Biz Mark. But I keep putting it of--


Brute force?




OK, you've got me anxiously waiting; to what do I owe this visit?


Um, I don't have a son. You're trippin'.


Who? What?


Maybe. Are you talking about the story where the girl gives up her firstborn and spins straw into gold?


Fucked if I know. Rumpelstilsken? I don't type in German, cock snot. Ask Idealjetsam.


I have a large porcelain cup filled with water, cemented to the floor, in the door on your right. You might find a breath mint or twelve in the dish nestled in the corner of the sink, too.


My right, your left.


Don't fall in, poindexter.


You still on about that?


There's a bottle of Jack in the top cupboard, a can -- my last -- of Cheez-Ums on top of the fridge, and the eyes I stole from the mailroom supervisor at my last job in the cooler next to it. Help yourself.


Say it, don't spray it.


I guess not.


I dunno, you HAVE gotten a little cuter since the last time I saw you. You been working out?


You look steamy, for sure.


Don't listen to a word. You're hotter than Hades.


Nevermind. Let's share a tooth brush.



Tuesday, July 10, 2007


People don't believe me when I state that I am an optimistic man of the people. I hope for nothing but the brightest in the future of humanity, and the greatest possible achievement of my infintesimal existence would be to share something -anything- with the bulk of mankind, if only for the sake of the children.

I'm a bit lazy, sure, but I make an effort to touch -and be touched by- the beautiful, the indigent, the neurotic, and the languid people of our fair planet. Thanks to the power of the Internet, I have such a power at my fingertips. Did I mention that I was lazy? Yeah, but when I said lazy, I meant aneretic. I hadn't intended to piss in your pudding, my dearest.

Just yesterday, Sparkles sat me down (and yes, I took a fucking seat) to discuss the situation with me. 'Listen, K, there are precisely twenty-seven readers of Psychedelic Kimchi,' he began, and while I thought his profusion of discharged spittle a bit less than gregarious, I felt it best to remain calm. 'We have a fine tradition to uphold,' he continued, 'hadn't I mentioned that? No, I guess I didn't, but it doesn't change the fact that you're in deep shit.'

'Deeper than the grave I dug for myself while financing Camino's Heaven's Gate?' I was certain that my statement would throw him off, but to be honest, I'm quite the twit.

'That ain't no thing but a chicken wing compared to this,' he quipped, and I -literally- shit my pants. It was all or nothing at this point, like Emilio in Maximum Overdrive.

'So, are we talking...Defcon 5, deep-as-idealjetsam's navel deep?' I inhaled, awaiting the icy grip of cold, Burlington-bred Death. He nodded solemnly, and extended a hand. At the risk of divulging too much, that load of shit crept back into my anal cavity; I was that frightened.

'Twinkie? You seriously need some sweet in your life.'

'No, man. I'm fine.' I appreciated the gesture, like an inmate appreciates his last meal before his execution, but my appetite had been devoured. He kept prodding me to eat a twinkie, for about five minutes. We then shared four, and smoked a pack of Parliaments. To be fair, Sparkles had been correct about needing some sweetness, insomuch that it adequately prepared me for the bombshell that was to come.

Upon the completion of his last cigarette, Sparkles pressed a button on his belt buckle, and a large screen descended from the ceiling of wherever the hell we were. 'The chart speaks for itself,' he noted, smug in his authority, 'and you can see that you have, at best, three solid supporters.' I couldn't deny his logic, 'cause that's like denying that Denz has the market cornered on personalized brass knuckles (don't pretend you didn't see D-E-N-Z imprinted upon your girlfriend's backside*).

Fig. 1-1

'What the fuck is that!', I shouted, fueled by an abundance of Hostess treats and unable to restrain my emotions any further. 'You were telling me that you hadn't any time to complete Marvel Ultimate Alliance, and here you are, making up some fancy Power Point Pie Chart bullshit.' Sparkles held up a dainty hand, in order to stop my petulant behavior.

'Listen. Like I said, the beefaroni people may be on your side, but -and may I add that I am one of those people- that doesn't mean you can slack off whenever you like, masturbating to old reruns of Wonder Woman. Shape up.' I began to protest, but again, I was cut off. 'Sorry, but I have a date with a can of CheezUms, compliments of my mother, so I've no time to talk. Get your act together, and you can join me in the Procter & Gamble Psychedelic Kimchi Lounge.

I was left, defeated and defunct. Almost.

'Yeah, well, the Rescue from Cloud City/Hyperspace theme alone is better than a New Hope in its entirety', I shouted back, and from a distance, I heard a whisper of begrudging acquiescence.

Time will tell, and all that.


P.S. I make no promises, except that I'll continue to masturbate on a regular basis.

* The 'D' stands for Donkey Punch, bitches.

The Extinction Agenda

Friends tell me I smoke too much. I do. A pack and a half a day, rookie. Chain smoking is no longer a foreign concept*. And yet I feel holier-than-thou when some dude I meet in a bar -- I meet a lot of dudes in bars, by the way -- tells me he murders two, three on Saturdays. Silver fucking lining, there are people more fucked up than me.

Maybe it's the nicotine, but I also can't keep my hands from shaking. Every day I feel like the time I first tried to touch your breasts and fumbled with your bra strap. That was embarrassing, but you made it all right by telling me even Jordan missed game-winning shots. And then you massaged my prostate.

Maybe it's my shaky hands, but, also, I can't assassinate people with the gusto I once held. I'm like that gay-dressed guy in Fallen Angels. Plus, I'm in love with Michele Reis. I'm so going to die at the end of this one.

Shaky? Talk about shaky, my bowels are shakier than Tom Hanks's on The Vomit Comet, or the hips on your favorite belly dancer (every man has one). Or the Tacoma Narrows Bridge circa November 7, 1940, 11:00AM. Word to mechanical resonance. R.I.P., Tubby.

I'm going deaf. Foxy Brown style. Finally, time to put those sign language textbooks to good use. I mean, time for YOU to put those sign language textbooks to good use. Because I can master sign language, but a lot of good it's gonna do me if you don't know what the hell I'm not-talking about. It's doesn't take a genius to sign "Put it in your mouth," I know, but it's going to be tough to communicate "How the hell can there be a heaven when every RZA solo album sucks?"

What I'm trying to say is

(you've got a pretty mouth)

stress kills. Shit creeps up on you. You're all "I'm fine," and next thing you know, you're clutching your chest, waiting for that next breath that isn't -- joke's on you, Jack -- coming, wishing you had listened to Mecca and the Soul Brother for the thousandth time and watched March of the Penguins for the first.

Penguins. If there are no penguins in heaven, I'm not going.

Ditto for Jack Daniels, Dostoevsky, and Charmane Star. And Beefaroni and Cheez-Ums, natch.

(And Idealjetsam posts.)


...Psychedelic Kimchi.

(And sex. I said that quietly, right?)

* I still haven't achieved that Tom Waits voice, however. Dammit. K-Hot, should I increase my whisky intake?

K-Hot: You better. Man the fuck up.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Transformers -- Review

I still haven't seen 2 of the the summer's most-anticipated and -- by many indications -- most disappointing movies: Spider-Man 3 and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End. The negative responses to the films, despite their huge box office success, caused me to become passive about checking them out. (So much so that I wrote a passive sentence about the non-experience.) But I was genuinely exited about Transformers, and yesterday I got a chance to see it.

Honestly, I really can't say why I was hype to see Transformers. It certainly wasn't because I'm a fan of Michael Bay. And that's not a knock on the guy; I realized last week that I have never seen a Michael Bay film. (I'm weird like that.) Furthermore, I liked the toys and cartoon as a kid, but I was never THAT into them. I liked the cartoon more as a concept than the actual execution. (Let's face it, aside from Optimus Prime, the Decepticon infighting between Megatron and Starscream, OG "game don't talk about game" Soundwave, and retarded Dinobots, the titular robots were poorly characterized -- and not even a jive-talking or adolescent-like Autobot can mask the fact.) Ironically, I was intrigued because it appeared that this toy-inspired film about transforming robots was taking itself seriously -- not "Sir Lawrence Olivier in Hamlet" seriously, mind you, but a lot more seriously than a toy-inspired film about transforming robots has any right to be.

If the film were made to appease the rabid, arrestedly developed late-twenties/early-thirties fanboys*, it would have turned out to be a large-budget Power Rangers movie. I didn't want that, and, deep down, despite their protestations, neither did any nostalgic fanboy with an iota of sense. Were the film completely faithful to the source material**, there's no way it would have made for decent cinema. There are some lines between film and comics/cartoons which cannot be crossed***, and Transformers, the cartooniest of cartoons, exemplifies the fact perfectly. There are moments in the film when even I, a self-admitted 4-year-old boy trapped in a grown man's body, cringed at just how ridiculous it all was.

Thankfully, those moments are few and far between. For the most part, Transformers is a movie any self-respecting adult can watch without feeling as though he's reverting back to a life of Count Chocula cereal and Atari 2600s. And no pubic hair.

I was thoroughly entertained, despite Optimus Prime's lips****. Despite Anthony Anderson (who, as evidenced in the sublime Hustle & Flow, has some serious acting chops; too bad he continues to accept shitty roles*****). Despite Megan Fox (seriously, she's too pretty to the point that it ironically becomes impossible to find her attractive******). Despite Scorponok disappearing and never being heard from again (fucker doesn't even transform, too). Despite no Soundwave (that annoying Short Circuit-esque fucker BETTER be a set-up for Soundwave to step in, Pat Riley style, and show how things are done in the sequel). Despite the fact that the Transformers have their own language yet speak English to each other*******. Despite the fact I'm slowly going deaf (sorry, I've become so caught up in this review that the line between semi-professional critique and my so-called life has become blurry. I tend to do that********).

If you can forget, for two-and-a-half hours, that there is no pain and suffering in the world, that the Iraq war isn't happening, and that the Play Station 3 is overpriced, you too will find Transformers entertaining. Even if you can barely make out the dialogue because you have an undiagnosed condition slowly causing you to become deaf in both ears.

Does the Make-A-Wish Foundation accept 29-year-old alcoholic applicants, by the way? 'Cause I'd love to see Bumblebee tit fuck Megan Fox.

Pretend you didn't read that last part. Transformers is a great summer movie. Unless you died from leukemia complications last spring. It's worth the admission price alone just for the cab ride home afterwards where you keep picturing cars on the highway suddenly becoming giant robots and annihilating Imae-dong. Trust me.

3 out of 4 *_*


* They're called Transfans. I won't hold it against you for laughing uncontrollably for, let's say, 72 hours. Because anyone who wilfully proclaims himself a "Transfan" has long ago ceded the right to be taken seriously and deserves any and all mockery and scorn which comes his way.

** A fucking toy line!

*** Case in point: the alien symbiote crashing to Earth on a meteorite in Spider-Man 3. No one was expecting Secret Wars, but even in the context of a series of films about a teenager who gains the relative strength and abilities of a spider, that's plain fucking dumb.

**** And that's not my inner Transfan talking; Prime's lips are aesthetically displeasing. I get that the producers felt the bots wouldn't have seemed as human/empathetic/emotive/whatever without showing some mouth (which is why Spider-Man spends, in the films, a ridiculous amount of time with his mask either off or torn so clearly see that you can see Tobey Maguire's Sparkles-esque visage), but Prime's iconic face plate -- though it makes its appearance, sparsely -- is part of what makes the dude cool, and it wouldn't have taken away audiences' sense of his stoic leadership -- would have increased it, in fact. Giving Prime lips was almost as bad a decision as nipples on Batman and Mary getting an IUD after Jesus was born. (I could have done without fangs on Megatron, too.)

***** Word to Hang Time and Kangaroo Jack.

****** Just give her a cauliflower ear and I'm straight. And yellow up her teeth a little. Seriously, there ARE teeth too white so as to blind a man. I don't ask for much.

******* I may or may not be correct here, but I believe this was properly addressed in the cartoon. It is -- stupidly; you'll know it when you hear it -- also taken care of in the film vis a vis Autobot-to-human communication; but still I ponder, "Why does Megatron tell Starscream he has failed him yet again in English, instead of berating him in their native Decepticon tongue? " And why don't, apart from Megatron, Barricade, and Starscream -- the latter of whom's voice sounds awesomely close to the cartoon, if you care -- the Decepticons speak English fluently? Oh, I get it, the Decepticons are thuggish heathens too savage and too malicious to learn the primary language of the planet they wish to dominate. Reminds me of something. Unfamiliar language = evil! The Autobots, on the other hand, dig Top 40 radio, apple pie, and Ryan Seacrest. Good guys! But you know what, delving too deep into the cultural relativist undertones of Transformers is time consuming. And stupid. Stupider than Transfans, even.

******** I, personally, blame Transfans. It's natural that some kid whose Mom wouldn't buy him a Hasbro toy when he was six would grow up to blame Michael Bay and company for destroying his childhood. His mother, after all, is long deceased -- and after God, only Transformers can be blamed for his cancer of the vulva.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

I Dub Thee, Greg Oden

"Ill Mare." Still hasn't caught on. "Prince Paul." Probably never will (and how's that for injustice?). "The Hinrich Maneuver." Blame me before you blame him.

But, just like Eddie Adams was born to be Dirk Diggler, Greg Oden was born to be nicknamed "The Big Chill." You can try to convince me otherwise like you can try to complete a Rubik's Cube with only your pinky finger.

K-Hot: Everyone does everything just to get laid.

Tiberious aka Sparkles: Who said that? Freud?

K-Hot: No, I did.

The illusion of perfection

Trick Daddy: That onion soup was trill.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus: Anthony Michael Hall is such a shit.

Carmen Electra: The white one with the little pink hearts? You think so!?

Frank Oz: Yoda's easy. Grover's hard...You bump into me again and I WILL Prince Be you, Christian Bale.

Werner Herzog: In The Wild? Shit, Sean Penn, I made that movie 3 years ago. And people will always prefer to laugh at rather than sympathize with a man who abandons society to live in the wilderness. Triumph of the will? More like triumph of the stupid.

Sean Penn: You have a very valid point. Can you say "bears" again? That sounds so cute.

Dave Grohl: Don't get too stressed out over it. It'll all blow over in a month or two.

Akon: I know. Fucker deserved it, though.

Francis Ford Coppola: "Shot dead like Malcolm in the Autobahn"? What is that? That's singlehandedly the dumbest shit known to man. People pay you to say shit like that?

Raekwon the Chef: It's "Audubon," stupid.

Michael Mann: I fucking hate it when I try to make a grilled cheese sandwich and the butter is too hard, so I can't spread it properly and end up with a huge pad of butter in the middle and the rest of the bread is left dry. Why do I always leave my butter in the fridge? When have I ever needed cold butter?

[Phone rings]

Louis Gusman: Hey, is there a Maggie here?

Maggie Gyllenhaal: Yep, hold on a sec.

Louis Gusman: Who was it?

Maggie Gyllenhaal: Some kid looking for Julianne Moore.

Nas: I'm gonna remake 'Talking in Your Sleep' by the Romantics.

Cockroach from The Cosby Show: We're still tight. He locked me in his basement three months ago.

Bill Maher: He tends to do that.

Emile Hirsch: 87, now that was my favorite shit. Flintstones vitamins and Teddy Ruxpin.

Louis Gossett Jr.: Jaws 3-D deserves more love. In fact, take away my Oscar and give Jaws 3 more recognition. I would make that deal any day of the week. It's like the original Jurassic Park.

Michael Crichton: Get a load of dumbass.

Anthony Anderson: Whose dick do I need to suck to get a fucking drink around here?

Dave Grohl: You can't compare Marvin Gaye to Smokey Robinson. You just can't.

Lawrence Kasdan: People keep telling me that, and, frankly, it's become annoying. "Oh, you made the best Star Wars Film, you should have directed them all. Blah, blah, blah" That was Irvin Kershner, idiots. I directed The Big Chill. Dude made Robocop 2.

Greg Oden: "The Big Chill." I like it. Someone get my agent on the phone.

Faye Dunaway: No... wire... hangers. What's wire hangers doing in this closet when I told you: no wire hangers EVER? I work and work 'till I'm half-dead, and I hear people saying, "She's getting old." And what do I get? A daughter... who cares as much about the beautiful dresses I give her... as she cares about me. What's wire hangers doing in this closet? Answer me. I buy you beautiful dresses, and you treat them like they were some dishrag. You do. Three hundred dollar dress on a wire hanger. We'll see how many you've got if they're hidden somewhere. We'll see... we'll see. Get out of that bed. All of this is coming out. Out! Out! Out! Out! Out! Out! You've got any more? We're gonna see how many wire hangers you've got in your closet. Wire hangers, why? Why? Christina, get out of that bed. Get out of that bed. You live in the most beautiful house in Brentwood and you don't care if your clothes are stretched out from wire hangers. And your room looks like some two-dollar-a-week furnished room in some two-bit back street town in Okalahoma. Get up. Get up! Clean up this mess.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Can you change your whole life in a day?

Kevin Durant: Fuck, I can't believe I'm gonna be playing professional ball in a few moons. In Seattle.

Robert Downey Jr.: Fuck? Fuck, I can't believe I'm playing Iron Man. Word to Dennis Coles.

Kevin Spacey: Have either of you two seen my career? I'm genuinely curious as to where it's gone.

Justin Timberlake: Cameron Diaz had a nose job. A bad one.

Choi Min-Sik: Get it right, fuckers.

Alan Moore: The film adaptation of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen woulda been cooler with Clive Owen as Dorian Gray. As is, it's growing on me.

50 Cent: life is a fucking musical, dog.

Alan Moore: Yeah, a shitty musical.

Paul McCartney: Things could be worse. Am I not right, Ringo?

Chris Webber: My knee feels sorta tingly.

Triumph, the Insult Comic Dog: fuck denim hats.

Kirsten Dunst: Hear, hear.

Jack White: People take me more seriously since I stopped wearing foundation. What's up with that?

Brian Bosworth: Look, I'm dead like Jerry Garcia. And I just paid 35 dollars for a Casio synthesizer on Ebay.

Emilio Estevez: Sad, man. Sad.

Alan Moore: You're way too short, and ugly, to be anything more than an extra in a porn film.

Fred Durst: That was uncalled for.

The RZA: drudrudrudrudru. Bob Digi.

Kevin Spacey: I will shove my best supporting actor Oscar up your ass, Yao Ming!

Fyodor Dostoevsky: If there is no god, everything is permitted.

Jesse "The Body" Ventura: Even hoop earrings like THOSE?

Dostoevsky: ESPECIALLY hoop earrings like those. Hey, who made off with the crab cakes?

Pink Dot Deliveryman: OK, who ordered fifteen tofu sandwiches and a 2 liter bottle of Tahitian Treat?

Halle Berry's Mom: You are very witty, Tom Beringer.

Jody Foster: My favorite movie is The Ice Storm.

Justine Bateman: But they keep calling! What should I do? I mean, they ARE quite firm. And the fanmail hasn't stopped since Men Behaving Badly was canceled. I'm at a crossroads.

Steve Francis: Playboy is a very respectable publication. You should have done it a decade ago.

Jackson Pollock: Now THAT's art: I just caught the lead singer of Franz Ferdinand using a billiards cue to make himself vomit.

Model Iman: Possibly. I won't rule it out.

Ringo Starr: DJ Premier is overseeing my next studio album.

50 Cent: [unintelligible]

Chris Webber: It feels tickly, especially at night.

Flea: Uh oh, here comes trouble.

Tom Sizemore: Who double parked next to my ambulance?

Prodigy of Mobb Deep: It's somewhere. I mean, how difficult is it to find a shih tzu? Pull yourself together, Terry.

Brian Cox: We'll drive. Keep driving. Head out to the middle of nowhere, take that road as far as it takes us. You've never been west of Philly, have ya? This is a beautiful country Monty, it's beautiful out there, like a different world. Mountains, hills, cows, farms, and white churches. I drove out west with your mother one time, before you was born. Brooklyn to the Pacific in three days. Just enough money for gas, sandwiches, and coffee, but we made it. Every man, woman, and child alive should see the desert one time before they die. Nothin' at all for miles around. Nothin' but sand and rocks and cactus and blue sky. Not a soul in sight. No sirens. No car alarms. Nobody honkin' atcha. No madmen cursin' or pissin' in the streets. You find the silence out there, you find the peace. You can find God. So we drive west, keep driving till we find a nice little town. These towns out in the desert, you know why they got there? People wanted to get way from somewhere else. The desert's for startin' over. Find a bar and I'll buy us drinks. I haven't had a drink in two years, but I'll have one with you, one last whisky with my boy. Take our time with it, taste the barley, let it linger. And then I'll go. I'll tell you dont ever write me, dont ever visit, I'll tell you I believe in God's kingdom and I'll see you and your mother again, but not in this lifetime. You'll get a job somewhere, a job that pays cash, a boss who doesn't ask questions, and you make a new life and you never come back. Monty, people like you, it's a gift, you'll make friends wherever you go. You're going to work hard, you're going to keep your head down and your mouth shut. You're going to make yourself a new home out there. You're a New Yorker, that won't ever change. You got New York in your bones. Spend the rest of your life out west but you're still a New Yorker. You'll miss your friends, you'll miss your dog, but you're strong. You got your mother's backbone in you, you're strong like she was. You find the right people, and you get yourself papers, a drivers license. You forget your old life, you can't come back, you can't call, you can't write. You never look back. You make a new life for yourself and you live it, you hear me? You live your life the way it should have been. But maybe, this is dangerous, but maybe after a few years you send word to Naturelle. You get yourself a new family and you raise them right, you hear me? Give them a good life Monty. Give them what they need. You have a son, maybe you name him James, it's a good strong name, and maybe one day years from now, years after I'm dead and gone, reunited with your dear ma, you gather your whole family around and tell them the truth, who you are, where you come from, -- you tell them the whole story. Then you ask them if they know how lucky they are to be there. It all came so close to never happening. This life came so close to never happening.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Trippin' (aka How I Spent My Summer Vacation)

Just what I like to see -- I go away for the weekend, come home, and the place is spotless. (PK, of course; my tangible place is Mark Messier than a real-life version of Katamari Damacy.) Way to keep the place tidy, boys and girl.

Where was I? Nice of you to ask. On Friday I took a trip to the east coast of Le* Peninsula. Just me, myself and I. Oh, and my imaginary organ grinder's monkey. His name is Ivan. He likes Was (Not Was).

Some highlights:

- Taking the bus from Bundang to Seoul, the driver, naturally, didn't turn on the a/c. Because who needs air conditioning in 30-degree heat when it's raining? Not you, and certainly not me.

- Arriving at Cheongnyangni Station, the people who run the joint, naturally, didn't turn on the a/c. Because who needs air conditioning in 25-degree heat when it's humid as a motherfuck at 10 in the evening? Not me, and certainly not you. Just as man would know no hapinesss were it not for sorrow, control the temperature of his environment so that it's at a comfortable level and what do you get? Anarchy, friends. Word to Jon Bender. Sweating is important, vital. Everybody knows that. You don't sweat, you may die. Word to Outkast and C+C Music Factory.

- Trifecta. This train is as hot as the friction between a sumo wrestler's diaper. Ivan just fainted.

- I was worried that the 6-hour train ride would be boring. Fear no more, 'cause there's a drunk guy sitting behind me, and he keeps passing out and slamming his forehead against the back of my seat. This is the best vacation ever! Word to Clark Griswold.

- The drunk guy behind me -- who in intervals is muttering to himself and grunting like a porn actor -- lets rip a fart that could possibly rival the decibel levels of the games played at ORACLE arena during this year's Warriors/Mavs' playoff series. Immediately thereafter, a college-age girl gasps almost equally as loud. I am now officially having fun. Ivan, too.

- All good things must soon pass; and so it is that my drunken source of amusement must disembark at Wonju Station. Ivan, too, looks forlorn.

- To answer your question, no, I am not drinking. Alcohol would weaken -- cheapen -- the buzz I'm feeling right now.

- To answer your second question, yes, I can get through a 6-hour train ride without smoking a cigarette -- I mean, I could if I wanted to. And I just don't wanna. God bless this train's bathroom. It even has toilet paper!

- It's 4:40AM, and I can faintly see the sky lighten -- like a pair of navy blue slacks fresh out of the washing machine.**

- I've already shown most of my hand as far as the PK 27/34 goes, so here's another one: Someone Great by LCD Sound System. And I'm confident that it is a song which would have slipped past me had I not been sitting up all night, sober, aboard a train bound for (Glory?). Clarity, friends. Plus, the song's final seconds sound like my broken electric fan.

- The train stops at Jeongdongjin, and Ivan tells me it's time to get off, time to see the sunrise. We stroll along the beach, monkey paw-in-human hand, smiling like kindred simians. Unfortunately, at 5:05 (the Sun's ETA), all we see are clouds. "No way this is a metaphor for our love of each other," Ivan whispers to me. "No way," I whisper back. Then I pull his leash taught and swing him around in a circle like he's a helicopter's blades. Or the blades on my broken electric fan.

- Sand in our toes and sea breeze in our nose(es), an ajumma solicits us for a place to rest our weary heads. "Don't worry, we accept animals," the ajumma reassures Ivan, looking at me.

- No air conditioner? Par for the course. Ivan, however, is more than a little irate that the room's television has neither a remote control nor Animal Planet. I tell him to put the moves on the Jindo dog chained up outside if he's looking for easy access, but he just falls asleep facedown on the bed. That's Ivan for you.

- We set out for the day on a few hour's sleep, because, like Shaq in the playoffs, it's not a vacation unless you exert yourself, push yourself to the limit. Case in point: a 2-hour bus ride to a harbor where they serve -- Ivan assures me -- the freshest sea food on the peninsula. And I'm all for freshness.

- I am not, however, for so-called restaurants crawling with all manner of insects. I think I saw a centipede the length and girth of a Pringle's can***. Still, because the place's multi-tiered floors remind me of the staircase scene in Vertigo, I sit and await my meal. And it's a winner. Because who doesn't love sea slug? Certainly not me, and most certainly not you. It tastes like shampoo. Mixed with bad.

- Please don't get the mistaken notion that I disliked my meal. It was better than a million sneezes. Particularly the 'maeun-tang,' which blew my mind. Word to the Delfonics. Ivan liked the live squid. The live squid liked him, too. Moreso, perhaps. He has ten hickies to prove it.

- Yep, we're in the countryside -- a girl on the bus just asked me how to say English IN ENGLISH. "Break my heart, I deserve it," I tell her. I'm such a bastard, I know.

- Ivan and I, bellies full and spirits high, are frolicking at the bus stop, waiting for the bus that will, hopefully, take us back to our place of rest. After about 40 minutes, a young police officer -- I bet he managed to dodge full military service by pretending he was a woman -- strolls over and tells us that we've been waiting at the wrong spot. I thank him and follow the directions he gives, but, as we're walking away, he pulls on Ivan's tail and gives him a wink. Ivan, violated****, says, "Let's just get back to the motel so we can make love and wash the the stink of that bastard's scent off with the remedy that is your Tiberious Meat Hammer." I oblige.

- After delousing at the "creamatorium*****", we see the sights -- a giant fucking hour, nay, year glass! -- and eat fried chicken. Ivan, strength weakening like the first time I played Metal Gear Solid 3 and foolishly thought I could beat down and then eat a crocodile, wants to retire. I oblige.

Then I oblige again.

- Then I wake up. Then I notice a mosquito has bitten me -- fuck everything holy -- on the sole of my right foot. He's dispatched with extreme prejudice. Then I bite my fist until the itchiness resides. Then I fall asleep, roughly an hour later, for roughly 4 minutes. Then I wake up, scratching above my left eyebrow. Then I realize another mosquito has "obliged me," tugged my Tiberious Meat Tail, so to speak. Then I go on a killing spree, splattering six-legged, blood-sucking flying insects right to left, up to down, up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, b, a, b, a, start.

Then we're cool.

- I WAKE UP, turn off the caps lock, take a shower, shave, save, and eat jajang fried rice. Ivan prefers choicer fare: my bleeding heart.

I, naturally, oblige. Werewolf monkey, dig it.

- Take the train, take the train. Wouldn't you know it, a group of drunken mountain climbers boards and sits behind us. Sadly, no Earth-shattering farts. I can wait.

- I'm still waiting.

- Sunday evening, roughly 10:13 by my watch, I get off the train -- always a hard thing to do; I could spend my life on a train like you could spend a lifetime in Purgatory --, kiss Ivan goodbye and take the subway to City Hall. Then (then!) I take a bus back to the Holy Land, aka Bundang.

- Now, I'm going to bed.


Best vacation ever, as if you needed to ask.

* La?

** Write what you know.

*** And do it again.

**** Ivan Violated: the name of my new band and our eponymously-titled CD.

***** Punch me, now.