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Aug 30, 06 06:22 PM

I Wish I Took A Photo Of The Guy I Saw In Africa Herding Goats While Wearing An Eminem T-Shirt. It Put A Cap On The Whole 'Wigga' Debate For Me, Personally.

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Posted by Mike at 6:22 PM

As Of Today I Am Pretty Sure That I Have Written All the Songs for My Record, But I'm Unsure That I Will Be Able To Convince Anybody Else That I Have.

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Posted by Mike at 6:09 PM

Coffee is Bad. It Makes Me Feel Bad. It Makes My Mouth Taste Bad. Please Give Me More.

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Posted by Mike at 6:08 PM

In The Entire Time I Was In Eritrea Last Christmas, This Dude Was The Most Enthusiastic About Having His Picture Taken, And His Shirt Really Does Say "The Best Golf Crack."

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Posted by Mike at 6:01 PM

Aug 25, 06 11:40 AM

Panned by the Post!

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Perhaps not so much panned as pshawed.

There's a 5 day revival of the best of the 24 Hour Plays called 24 is 10 going up at the Fringe festival in New York this week. And I guess I should've blogged it before it went down, but my play went up night before last. It was Sizable Town, the first 24 hour play I ever wrote, in 1998. And it was much better than I remembered it: I was drunk that entire year.

Plus it featured my homeboy Brent Cox. Who is fresh.

The Post did shout out the performance of Julie Wright in my play, though, who was genius, and who was stricken with stage fright beforehand. Message: stage fright pays off.

This the Post after all, so it's rull hard to give it much credence. And I recieved exactly the satisfaction I was hoping for: I sat next to Rachel Dratch in the balcony, and she giggled through the entire thing.

Posted by Mike at 11:40 AM

Elizabeth Berkley:

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Is a killing actress, with the sharpest comic timing. This I discovered as she rocked the stage in the 24 Hour Plays night before last.

Posted by Mike at 11:39 AM

Reality Discovers Itself.

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There was this amazing moment at the end of Pimp My Ride where they actually showed a blooper reel. The pimp-ee's plump redheaded girlfriend was leaping up and down going "Holy Toledo! Your car looks amazing!" when she started laughing uncontrollably and somebody yelled "Cut!" off-camera.

Posted by Mike at 11:32 AM

Binge on Thin Lizzy.

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I've been pulling my hair out demoing songs for my record company and manager, and desperate to rest my tired ears, I downloaded a boatload of Thin Lizzy tunes. Aka the guys who played "The Boys Are Back In Town"

Huge admirer of the late Phil Lynott--a black Irish guy, abandoned Dublin-born child of an African-Brazilian father. This amazing soulful hangdog voice. He was an opiates guy--died of a heroin overdose at 35, one year younger than I am as I type this--that keeps happening as I get older.

I discovered him as freshman in high school because I was in the Columbia records and tapes club and I think I had an extra record to buy, so I bought their final album, a live record where they get together all forty seven dudes who played guitar with them and play their greatest hits.

There's been kind of a Phil Lynott revival of late--Scott Ian praising him on VH1--but back then I was the only guy I knew who knew them at all. Even in college, I tried to hip my drummer to them, and he laid Phil Lynott low with a hipster coup de grace: "He sounds like Eddie Money."

I went down to Prospect Park and sat by the boathouse and listened, and some of the songs are so, so very corny, but always his voice is so charming and beautiful.

Here's something weird: there was a "reunion" a few years ago, where the drummer and guitar player got together with faceless dudes and toured and played the hits. Turns out one of the tunes I downloaded was from the cheap-o live CD they put out and I didn't even recognize it as such. Whatever singer they got had Phil Lynott down to the last tearful nuance.

Maybe something admirable about that.

Maybe I'll do a little iTunes, uh, i-List, or mac-list, or whatever you call it, of fun groovy Thin Lizzy deep cuts or something. Yeah.

Posted by Mike at 11:29 AM

Denied Access to Comedy Hero.

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I became a huge fan of Paul F. Tompkins when I was out in L.A. making a record, and my old A&R guy at Warner Bros. would take me to the Monday night comedy thing at Largo on Fairfax.

I discovered he was a fan one night when I was glum and I looked to see who had "Added Me As a Favorite" and he was there, and I wrote him a freaked out note, and it turned out it was actually him and we had a fine moment of mutual fandom and logrolling.

And he's playing UCB this Monday and sadly I must be in Connecticut, in the land of Manute Bol.

Posted by Mike at 11:16 AM

Aug 17, 06 09:47 AM

Psyched About the Burton/Depp Film Version of Sweeney Todd.

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(I saw the current revival of it on Broadway--never heard it before then--and was just blown away.)

Burton/Depp version: voila.

Though in my mind the movie's using the amazing small-ensemble arrangements of the current version, which almost certainly it won't be. I bet Tim Burton will go for the big ole spectacular throwback Broadway style.

PS. I still think that his "Chocolate Factory" is better than the original. Never was particularly fond of the Oompa-Loompa song anyway (that's the only thing in the movie on which Burton does not improve).

Also: two words: Deep Roy. The inspired, Buster-Keaton-esque little person actor who plays, via movie magic, all the Oompa Loompas. Please make with the rental of DVD, OK? If love of self: rent. And be make the glad.

Posted by Mike at 9:47 AM

Aug 16, 06 04:51 PM

My Social Existence Centers Around Scrap and I Making a Weekly Jaunt to an Arby's in Middle Village, Queens, on Saturday Night.

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I would say something like, "It's sad, but true," except I'm not sad about it.

I really am just posting this so my latest post isn't a photoshopped picture of a fat Tom Cruise that I ganked from a Hungarian humor site. (Really)

Posted by Mike at 4:51 PM

Tom Cruise Photoshopped as a Fat Man.

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Yeah.

Posted by Mike at 12:02 PM

Aug 15, 06 01:45 PM

I Saw Manute Bol in West Hartford, Connecticut.

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It was at one of those restaurants for the patrician Connecticutese where the food is almost good, and the atmosphere is almost sophisticated. In came this nearly eight-foot-tall black man in Ecko gear who looked kind of like the two or three half-remembered photographs of Manute Bol I've glanced at in my life. He had to dip his head really really low to get in the door.

Wikpedia says he's 7' 7". Everything I know about Manute Bol I learned just now from Wikipedia, because I did not know how to spell "Manute Bol." I do not know about the basketball. I like typing "Manute Bol."

Posted by Mike at 1:45 PM

Aug 13, 06 10:44 AM

Methods.

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I've been trying to write more songs for a session in September; time is limited, obviously, and I don't have the sheaf of culled phrases from months of journals that I usually use as a lyrical source. So I've been reading books with a pen in hand, underlining interesting and/or rhythmic words, and then writing them down the next day--over several columns on several sheets of paper, to put them in an order other than that in which they appeared in the books--and then when I go to the guitar and the drum machine I use those words to plug into the lyrics.

I did John Strausbaugh's Black Like You (a history of blackface and minstrelsy), Murakami's Underground (about the Tokyo subway gas attack in 1996, a creepy thing to be reading about this week) and I'm now doing Gabriel Garcia Marquez's Love in the Time of Cholera. It's amazing how just a handful of words can suggest the worlds of these books; the Bowery stages of 1890, panicked commuters in regimented Asian society, dignified, elderly lovers in lush, surreal Carribbean locales.

Posted by Mike at 10:44 AM

Aug 11, 06 08:23 AM

Andy HQ Says That in Fact It Should Be Goodies-Two-Shoes.

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Thank you Sara in Texas.

Posted by Mike at 8:23 AM

Aug 10, 06 03:18 PM

So Apparently I'm Quoted on the Side of a Starbucks Cup.

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Anybody seen it? Am I a Venti? Got a pic?

Posted by Mike at 3:18 PM

Aug 5, 06 10:48 AM

Aw Yeah. I Just Made Five Dollars.

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Nickelback covers "Super Bon Bon":

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BDblod8EeL4

Let the sawbucks roll in.

(pic courtesy of listener Frances Landfear)

Posted by Mike at 10:48 AM

Aug 3, 06 12:41 PM

Political Convenience.

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I've gone outside and rode my bike around Prospect Park the last two days of this heat wave.

Last night, Mayor Bloomberg went on TV and YELLED AT PEOPLE for having the hubris to work out in hundred-degree heat.

Truthfully, it wasn't that bad doing cardio in the hotness. But what could be better as an excuse for being a layabout? Thank you, Mike Bloomberg.

(Photo by Megan Powell)

Posted by Mike at 12:41 PM

Aug 2, 06 11:02 AM

Al Gore Is Not Mad At Me Nor I Him.

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I got a cross email about saying "Al Gore is mad at me," vis a vis my electrical usage, in the last entry. I want to clear it up. It's a new expression that's hip with the kids, "Al Gore is displeased" or "I fear the wrath of Al Gore." As if Al Gore has become our collective environmental superego.

I am diggy down with the Al Gore. Hoping he runs in '08.

(Dieses Pic by Emily Bracke)

Posted by Mike at 11:02 AM

Aug 1, 06 06:32 PM

I Saw Kelly Ripa at Jamba Juice.

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What am I going to do, blog about the weather? Yes.

(Above pic by Stephanie Marie Kubes; below by Ike Whiting)

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Is it really August? How did that happen?

Truth is, I dig the hot hotness. It allows many opportunities for relief; you bike around the park a bunch of times and get overheated, then you get your hot skin in the shower and chug lemonade and cool off.

The Channel 4 Live at Five news, showing thumbnails of the week's highs and lows, captioned tomorrow "NO RELIEF."

I am using electric devices to make and record my music. Al Gore is angry with me.

Still waking up and writing songs and wondering if I'm done and having no perspective on my own work.

Still very obsessed with the German. Trying to write a list song, of second-person present-tense German verbs, and some of the odder and more sonorous phrases in my phrasebook.

Still trying to cut back on the Kaffee.

Posted by Mike at 6:32 PM