Sunday, October 30, 2011

Yellow Lampshade

Act I

“Where did you get that lampshade?”
“I love this lampshade. It looks just like my father’s lampshade.”
“I hate your father, and I hate you.”
“Get out.”
“What are you going to do?”
“I’m going to sit here and look at the city like I always do. Get the hell out.”
(Exit, weeping.)

Act II

“I’m leaving you.”


“I’m sorry, baby. Take me back.”
(They embrace.)
“That damn lampshade.”
“Ugly as our lives.”

Friday, October 28, 2011

The Streets Are Sovereign

'Tuesday night I participated in the NYC Occupy Wall Street General Assembly in which we voted to send $20,000 and 100 tents to Occupy Oakland to help them post bail for arrested protestors and restart their occupation. At 9pm, we had a two-hour march through the streets of Manhattan that shut down traffic from the Financial District to Chinatown to the Village, chanting for solidarity with Oakland and an end to police violence and harbingering the new era of democracy, freedom, and equality. "We are the 99 percent!" "New York is Oakland, Oakland is New York!" "From Oakland to Greece: Fuck the police!" "Join us!"

There was no plan, no leaders. We just marched. From Zuccotti through the Financial District to City Hall, up from City Hall through Chinatown and SoHo to the Village, through the West Village, and back south through Tribeca, arriving safely and soundly back at the Occupation. The front of the march would occasionally yell to slow down or speed up, to turn left or right, and volunteers in the middle of the crowd would get people to fill in the gaps and stay together, both to keep the march impressive-looking and to keep it more secure (there is safety from police in numbers). When police vehicles tried to flank us, heroic protestors would stand in a line dead center in the road, arms and legs spread wide, throwing up peace signs, holding the cops back as we passed. If they set up a blockade in front of us, the front of the line, without ever stopping, would debate which way to go, and simply detour around them. When they tried to snatch us up, we'd just have to run straight past them--there's little seven cars of police can do to stop five hundred free people. I even heard later that protestors successfully de-arrested a few individuals who had been forcibly detained by prying them away and putting so many cameras in the cops’ faces that they were like deer in headlights. Don't believe the haters: mobs are deeply intelligent—even witty! When we confiscated one of the giant orange nets that the NYPD had used to pen in and pepper spray protestors and carried it aloft like a dragon at Chinese New Year, the chant "Whose streets? Our streets!" morphed into "Whose net? Our net!"

I started on the march solo, but soon caught up with harder-core friends at the front, as well as some veteran activists I'd met for the first time two weeks prior in a smaller march when riot police cleared Washington Square Park. Like magic (or perhaps just like the not-at-all distant past when people simply ran into each other without the aid of cell phones) I ran into friend after friend after friend, until we had our own little bloc among the masses. We were raising the temperature of politics in this country, reminding everyone how damn good it feels to be free. It was chaotic. It was wonderful. Sometimes accidents happen or the temperature gets too hot but solidarity and joy always prevail. Two guys exchanged words and got into a fist fight. Their friends pulled them apart as the whole march chanted "Peace! Peace!" and the antagonists apologized and marched on together.

You know me, I'm not at all in good shape, and as the two-hour odyssey dragged on I pushed my poor, doughy body to the edge of oblivion. "I'm going to bail at this intersection," I threatened my friends, but mostly myself, every fifteen minutes. When Michele and I had to bolt from a skirmish with riot police, I swear to God, as I sprinted in the train of that skinny fuck's wicked, wind-lashed locks, everything went blurry and I nearly hurled up the three shots of whiskey and two gourds of yerba maté that had passed as dinner that night. Later as I dashed delirious across Canal Street, the main commuter thoroughfare of Lower Manhattan, trying to get away from an oncoming column of unmarked police cars, I collided head on with another demonstrator, a bright-eyed student whose delicate looks and too-beautiful hair are not as out of place in such events as you might think. She had been running toward the police to stand with those blocking their attempt to bisect our march. Her tiny frame went flying and she landed smack on the pavement. I scooped her off the ground and we embraced in the street. I handed her her fallen cigarette. "Are you okay?" "Yes! I'm OK!" We hugged again and ran back into the fray!

We marched against traffic whenever possible, shutting down blocks and blocks of traffic in the most densely trafficked neighborhoods of the most densely trafficked city in the country. The city was electric. Motorists everywhere, especially taxi drivers, honked their horns and waved peace signs and clenched fists in solidarity. Construction site workers chanted. Revelers just out for a drink spontaneously joined in. We marched through the set of Gossip Girl in the West Village, and the teenage girls who lined the sidewalks hoping to catch a glimpse of the stars shrieked with delight when we passed and chanted, “Join us!” and they realized that they, themselves, were the real heroes. Every single sanitation and freight truck we passed blasted their massive horns. Everyone screamed and the ground shook beneath our feet. Entire city blocks resonated with the sounds of whooping, hollering, chanting, drumming, and industry. It was utterly intoxicating, and to reject such intoxication would be sheerest reaction. I've never had such fun in my life. And this is just the beginning.'

- Rick Parry, October 2011

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Rick Parry Brigade

"It's never to late to join the bandwagon! Authenticity is counterrevolutionary!" - Willard Romney in queue for the McDonald's bathroom

"I get it, it's just like Twitter!" – Sarah Palin on the People's Mic

"Ribbit ribbit, pig." – Michael Steele at the barricades

"No one's gonna beat up emos when the Dept. of Youth is on the street!" - Rand Paul

"I got the highest score on the Civil Service exam, the answer to every question was the whip!" – NYPD Lt. Rick Santorum

"Roll the fucking dice!" - Michele Bachmann leading a snake march into Hell

"Hey Wall Street: Let's fuck!" – Ron Paul

"What kind of clothes should I wear to the Occupation?"
"Like, I dunno, a lot of yellows, some plaid, maybe a tutu and chaps, whatever the fuck you want, people are free here!"
- Mitch McConnell, Joe Lieberman

“I saw pizza everywhere, shared and unfinished!” – Herman Cain

"Be my Arab Spring." – New Gin Ginch to his fourth wife

"One day, Simba, all of this will be in rebellion against you." - Hank Paulson to Lloyd Blankfein, 2006

“I’m with the People now, uncle!”
“But then who will you lash?”
- George W. Bush, Dick Cheney

"What the fuck do you mean 'contingent upon capitalism?'"
"I said, this shit is contingent upon capitalism! All your shit is donated by people with jobs!"
"Fuck you. Everything is contingent upon capitalism. That's why they call it capitalism."
- John Boehner to a Maoist

"In conclusion, autonomist revolt is not only more desirable than social democracy but also, in the American context, easier to accomplish. Now, time for questions. Yes, you there."
"But, Mr. Huntsman, what about the state's monopoly on the legitimate use of violence?"
"Well, I'm glad you asked, you see--CHINESE GANGSTERS!"
- Jon Huntsman, gunned down at Occupy Phoenix

"People ask if I’m jealous of Herman, of his success in the polls, his new book deal. 'That coulda been you!,' they say. I say, naw, man, I’m just a regalur guy. I love Herman, power to whom, but I just don’t want what he wants. I’m not ambitious. I’m just trying to get by and sneak in a dance with Transcendence when I can, you know?" - Rick Parry, meditation circle

A Revolution Is Not a Gallery Opening

“I met this young guy, a painter or something, in a bar in Clinton Hill and he was like, I’m not goin' down to the Occupy Wall Street because that’s some mamby pamby bullshit. And he said, Rick, I hope you win, I hope everything just keeps getting worse and worse until it finally gets so bad that people finally stop protesting and start picking up guns. And I said to him, well, fella, I appreciate yer support, but I gotta say, ONE: if you ain't like to go out to some mamba pamby hold hands and drum circle bullshit protest, I got a hard time believin yer ever gonna pick up a gun, and, TWO: if yer the type a fella that can't express himself except by pickin up a gun, well I just ain't sure I can trust you to wield ANY kind of violence responsibly whether its legitimate, revolutionary, or whatever.” – Rick Parry

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Into the Black

The Turkish army responded with an air-supported operation against the fighters in Iraq's northern Qandil mountains, with both airstrikes and soldiers on the ground employed.
‎"You know, I just can't drink whiskey like I used to could. My ole belly just ain't no count. Get the shits every time." - Charlie Rose to Thom Friedman, Rainbow Row, Charleston, SC
'As of now, wide reaching operations, including hot pursuit operations, are continuing in the region within the framework of international law,' Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Turkish prime minister, told a news conference on Wednesday.
Amanpour: What's wrong, Charlie?
Blitzer: Yeah, Charlie, what's wrong? Why aren't you dancing?
Morgan: Yeah, this is your favorite song.
Cooper: These are your favorite thighs.
Amanpour: Charlie, are you okay? Charlie?
Rose: (as though in a trance) Yes... No... I'm fine.
- Scores, Ibiza
Speaking on Turkish television, Erdogan appealed for calm from the Turkish people, and said that it was 'very clear that this terrorist organisation [the PKK] is a piece in the hands of certain powers'. He did not elaborate on who those 'powers' were.
When stronger states invite themselves over to the house of a weaker state without pinging first, Charlie Rose, alone in the void of veiled truth and infinite darkness, puts out his Safe Cig© with the heel of his size 14 1/2 boot, draws a pack of Lucky Strikes© from the inside pocket of his impeccably tailored, though more than slightly wrinkled, double-breasted suit jacket designed by his dear friend Tony Burch©, observes his tired, bent reflection in his Ravenscroft© snifter of Suntory Yamazaki© 18 Year Old Single Malt, and, seated back to void across the table from an empty seat backed by void, longs to be invaded.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Heart of Darkness

"It's not racist if it's racism." - Rick Parry

"I don't think I'd put government money into Solyndra but I know everyone who votes for me in the primary will get a free large pepperoni pizza and a bottle of vodka." - Herman Cain, Live at Niggerhead Unplugged

"Coat hangers." - Michele Bachmann
I am limitless flatness. I am West Texas. I am Jean-Baptiste Lully. I am the Branch Davidian. I am Ronald P. Stanton. I am the white glove on the Invisible Hand. I am the Denial of Death. I am Rick Santorum, and I'm running for President.
"A great calm accompanies cessation of belief in oneself, a calm attributable to the removal of the burden of authenticity, of any obstacle to the guilt-free pursuit of one's own material comfort, the abandonment of any meaningful or socially useful enterprise, even of any socially harmful but respectably ambitious enterprise." - Mitt Romney contemplating his last chance, the Bonneville Flats

"Youth is truly over." - Jon Huntsman upon realizing he no longer loves his wife

"I'm talking Hail Mary, end zone shit: gas masks, iodine, canned meat, sodomy." - Ron Paul stumping in an abandoned missile silo

"When I come down on you with the whip the look on your face will be priceless." - Newt Gin Ginch

There Is A Storm Coming

"How can revolution arise without the aid of crisis? How can the Left break the unacknowledged vicious cycle of this reliance on calamity in the real circumstances of the present? The answer lies in finding crisis under disguise, not in the great collective catastrophes of war and economic ruin but in the hidden tragedies of individual anguish, fear, insecurity, and incapacity, repeated many millions of times over in the life of contemporary society. Almost everyone feels abandoned. Almost everyone believes himself to be an outsider, looking in through the window at the party going on inside. Flexibility—the watchword of the orthodoxy of markets and globalization—is rightly understood to be a code word for the generalization of insecurity. The parties that claim an historical connection with the Left are seen to oscillate between a shamefaced collaboration with this program of insecurity, in the hope that through growth it will generate resources that can be redirected to social spending, and a half-hearted, weakened defense of traditional social contracts. This fear, justified by plain fact, defeating hope, poisoning attitudes to the outsider, and expressing an immense and unredeemed waste of energy amounts to a crisis. It is lived out, for the most part silently, within the minds of individuals." - Roger Ebert

"Help, Michael Shannon is my father!" - A. O. Scott

Monday, October 10, 2011

We Choose To Go To The Moon

Slavoj Žižek appeared today to give what many will surely come to consider the 21st century Sermon on the Mount. Thousands of eager youths crowded around the glowing, nearly effervescent newly-anointed king of hipsters. Women flocked to his feet, ripping at their garments to wash away the blood of battle from the soiled Slovenian. As he spoke, a slightly organic gurgling of the sort a child might hear emanating from his closet late at night, the crowd wept. He fed on their tears and continued, rejuvenated.
"I love you all... even in all this filth. I see you here, you bedraggled masses, crumbled at my very feet. You, with your fedoras and Ray-Bans, you with your Nietzsche, you with your Kant, you with your iPod and your headphones to match. I see you all and wish you well. This goddamn Wall Street can go to hell."
"We LOVE YOU!!!!" the crowd shouted.
"I see you there... you with the cameras and the soy and the bikes. You with the haircuts and the ramen and the non-fat chai lattes. I see you crowded around that Asian fusion food truck with high-waisted tight pants and ironic tees. I see you all, and yet, I feel nothing."
"You are ours" the crowd hissed.
"You need a job? Go ask Lacan."
"You are ours" as they lurched towards him.
"Let them eat iPhones."
The seething and beautiful horde came closer and closer still.
"We are yours."
"Then come my children, for I alone am yours."

The feast began.
He tasted like pork, but it felt like victory.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

No Revolution Without Cynicism

"At last we become the object of our desires." - Brooklyn

"Efficacy is a macho fantasy." - Seattle

"We want your jobs!" - the underemployed

Bloomberg Calls for 'Age of War'

"The wall (street) at the end of history is insurmountable."
"Aren't you a fucking television critic?"
- Ginia Bellafante, Glenn Greenwald

"I don't know who to trust!" - Howard Stern

Mounted Police Defect, Demand Tribute From Nearby Duane Reades

"Behind every leaderless revolt is a hierarchy of fucking." - Billy Ayers

"If you loved the birth of the Revolution, wait till you eat the placenta." - Thom Friedman at the Bloomberg Battle Dome

"The light at the end of the tunnel is black." - Michele Bachmann

"The Revolution was worth the come down, baby!" - Jean-Paul Marat