Tuesday, January 16, 2007

NEW YAWK #1 (1.10.07)

So, yeah, we're back in New York and loving it. It's chilling as fuck. L.A. as made W.T.P.'s* out of us. I'm a wind-chill softie now and need to acclimate before my frakkin toes fall off. But let me back up...

I've been dying to get back on here with alllll the time I thought I had with Xmas and new years to get to my reflections on an amazingly crazy year, one that changed my life in so many ways, and of course my favorite dork tradition of the year: making a Top 10 fav movies of the year. I started doing it in 1989 (Batman was top of the heap, with Lethal Weapon 2 and Parenthood a close 3rd) and it's been part of the experience of seeing and experiencing films; sitting in a theater or watching a DVD hoping for it to rank when I examine it's merits at years end. This year has been fucking stellar, with so many films I was dismissing this time last year (X-MEN: THE LAST STAND for example...It was the RETURN OF THE JEDI of the series, which to me ain't a bad thing. Ratner rocked it faithfully, face it people.) and so many exceeding expectations (PAN'S LABYRINTH, anyone?) that I think I've just been intimidated. Plus with a few writing projects that are WAY overdue (sorry, guys!) and with working over the break it really didn't feel holiday-esque and kept me from sitting down to finally finalize the list, which would be considered past due in bloggerville I could see. But I'm here now in Long Island on the 3rd day of our "We Are Family Post-Holiday Tour 2007" and despite our ill-preparation for the wind-chill...W.T.P.'s to the max...it's been a blast. We spent yesterday just readjusting to driving around the island, where it's illegal to talk on a cell phone in a car and noone seems to care. Driving around Long Island, Queens and the city was a trip; instantly my brain seemed to download all the best traffic and route information that lay dormant and dusty in my brain for the last few years and we were speeding from the Bklyn Queens Expressway, through Queens (our old stomping ground from 2000-02) where we left the car (a Pontiac Vibe, which is like the slightly less gay cousin to the P.T. Cruiser) to bask in the glory of the N train, our old commute route into Manhattan.

Now we dont go to the city for the museums or the sights or the other tourist traps...we go for the food. Each point we hit from 59th street to the Bowery was from eatery to eatery and everything in between is considered "sight-seeing". So first we hit downtown, where one of our favorite places, RICE, resides on Mott. Just by chance, we walk in to greet a shivering little Boston Terrier that INSTANTLY made me miss The Banz, but this particular Boston looked familiar....especially since it was tethered to one Famke Jansen, one of the most striking women in existence, who was also eating a bowl of Curry by herself (well, with "Licorice" in tow) so we had a nice lunch with some light conversation with Famke and away we went. Super nice, Famke is tops in many of my book (aqnd of course, on "the list").

Walking down the Bowery in the FREEZING cold (the wind chill factor outside would actually freeze off a witches tit, this I assure you) so between Point A and Point B was a fucking ordeal, with bri and I doing our own remake of Carpenter's THE THING all bundled up looking like Al Queda chanting "Lee Lee lee" to keep ourselves chuckling and warm as we bee-line across the east side till we get to Teany. This is a cool little tea bar owned by Moby and it's a must stop if you like a funky Roibus and a side of "hip", check this place out. No Moby playing, which might be a good thing.

After warming up with a Teanychino and some baked goods, we walk to Broadway and Houston, which is "Ground Zero" for chick hotness. I used to work in this area years ago (for Pseudo.com and later a Chinese TV show) and now that I've been on Melrose and among the Hollywood fashionistas and I can proudly say that 365 days a year, even when the cold can peel any exposed flesh off in seconds, you will ALWAYS find a beautiful woman who you can take a mental picture of for the spank bank home witcha. I guarantee it, and just imagine what it's like in April when the coats come off and the Spaghetti string shirts are slipped on. Bliss. But I digress...

So we take the N on Prince street up to Times Square, just to make sure we hit that landmark and of course it was absolute chaos in a croissant (or a Bagel, this being New Yawk) but we got our digital shots out, checked on tickets for the play we're going to hit on Friday (which you cannot begin to fathom my geek-excitement for) and then headed back to Queens to hang out with some good friends who live in the area. By 11pm we both felt like a bus hit us FINAL DESTINATION style and we headed back to the Island exhausted but exhilarated. As much as NYC is a hassle to deal with, I'd move back here in a...well...a New York Minute, for lack of a better cliche. Sorry Im fucking spent.

Yesterday we spent the day with my family on the Island, going to Lunch and just doing the requisite family thang, and with my ipod (in shuffle mode) constantly playing tracks off of Stone Temple Pilot's CORE album as i drove through the once familiar (and not-so-mean) streets of Port Jeff, Setauket and Stony Brook, it was a pretty nostalgic day. Part of me is so proud I stuck to my dreams and passions in making movies and that in many ways they are coming true, and being home only made me cherish my accomplishments all the more, but also put my head into a cautious, realistic space, knowing it can all go away so quickly, and to keep my head down and continue "dreaming". Got me this far...and i can't wait to make Long Island scary again...you'll see soon...

One note: Just looking around my room, it's so funny seeing how a room is a chronicle of one's childhood dreams & interests...posters, hanging pictures, bric-a-brac on shelves and walls, all the things we end up shedding when we grow older and responsibilities begin to interweave into our lives. But being in my room, with the posters and figures and books, was a real trip, seeing how in retrospect, they were both minor and major influences. One book in particular caught my eye: Stephen King's CHRISTINE. The book you see is the first book besides Sweet Pickles and Disney's The Black Hole movie book that I ever read front to back...when I was 7. This book scared me shitless, more than the face-ripping in POLTERGEIST, more than the burning Nazis in RAIDERS, more than that fucking Calagari-esque vampire in SALEMS LOT (notice how all three of the aforementioned films are PG, which was the only way I got to watch horror since PG was broadcast on HBO before 8) and when I look at it, I see where my love for having the poop scared our of my body, my love for scaring other people (I would go into school and read passages from this and Clive Barker's BOOKS OF BLOOD to my friends, much to their excitement when i got to the gore or descriptions of boobies) and also my undying love for anything Stephen King. This book, more than my mom exposing my brothers and I to classics like DAWN OF THE DEAD and RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD and BLOOD BEACH, more than my subscription to Fangoria, is the genesis of my dreams, and to flip through it's galleys was like taking a time-warp back when I first read the book and was amazed how words could affect me so much. Now I'm creating nightmares, the torch has been (somewhat) passed, and holding this book again filled me with geek-joy. Thanks Sir King.

Today we're back in the city to wrap a few things up and eat some more (magnolia Cupcakes, here I come!) and then tonight's the play...Im giggling with anticipation. Then it's off to Syracuse to see Bri's family for a few days before we're back to (he)L.A. so hopefully we get a LITTLE snow, even for nostalgia....

I promise to put up my Top 10 movies of 2006 up soon when I can finally lock a set list down so sorry to both of you guys reading this.

Ah...New Yawk.


*(Weather Tolerance Pussies)


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