and this shall be the new portrait

the title of this musing is a funny phrase which i recently forgot about until an oold friend who goes by "ted holland" used it in an email. it made me laugh out loud... which that guy has always been able to do. since then, i've been trying to use the phrase more in my day-to-day activities. par-egg-zom-pleh (french for "for example):  " i was really thirsty , so i got myself a tall glass of water, and presto change-o, now i am feeling great.

see? see how it works? you should try it at home. try it in the office... it turns a regular cause and effect situation into hilarity if you ask me.

so i know its lame to sometimes talk about the weather.... but sheesh... who wouldn't want to talk about the nicety to which warm has sprung upon us ever-so nicely and swiftly. like a kind doctor who needs to put a needle into a kids arm or leg who is nervous... and he says he'll count to three... but then just after the number two... he does a swift plunge into the flesh... and it is tricky because it beats the anticipation, and the child realizes the needle isnt that bad becuase it was fast and painless.... well... thats kind of how spring came.... spring came on "two" and one day the trees were barren and it was 40. and the next day they were that early bright green and it was 88 degrees and i was eating iced cream and drinking margherita's outside (not in that order - in the opposite order actually)

oh my gosh... i just accidentally sneezed on my computer screen. i wanted to cover my nose... but my hands were busy typing and i assumed that the sneeze would be all air no viscosity... and since i was alone... i could sneeze into the air.well... i sneezed on the screen and accidentally sprayed a bit of watery-ish spray onto these very words. but the reason i tell you, is that it reminded me of a guy i like to call "butterfly".

he goes by the name of aaron gause and he is driving up to see me right now for thie memorial weekend. one time, butterfly was in my car, and he had to sneeze. that part isn't too funny... the funny part is that he thought my window was open and so he leaned right and sneezed and wound up shooting nose-goo all over my window and then laughed and placed his hand on his face. i thought it was real funny. real funny.

that also reminds me of one of my other favorite things... which is when monkeys do something bad... the place their hands over there face in an abashed funny way. its so primate particular and everytime i do an impersonation of it - people can usually guess that i am pretending to be a silly-feeling monkey of some sort.

the only other impersonation that i am good at is of a metal tube. i can do a great impersonation of a metal tube but i dare not explain it. you'll just have to see it sometime to see it.

but back to aaron. he's coming up here, and i am excited to have a good friend so close. i don't know what we're going to do. but i really don't care. i just want to be around a friend who knew me before i moved to new york and got a job and got hairier and got less funny. yesterday i tried to call every friend in the city i could to grab some food or a drink.. and yes its a holiday weekend and a few were away and a few were at work still... but i couldn't get anyone to hang out. and i realized that while i probably have a maybe 8 friends in this city. i don't really have any that reeeaallly like me or want to hang out like i used to have.

i don't blame them at all. i think its the world's fault for making us work all the time, or getting old and not wanting to break a routine to hang out with an old friend. but i also blame myself for not being as fun as i once was. though i am aware of it - and want to try and rekindle my fun-ness.

perhaps if i do more metal tube and monkey impersonations that'll help.

welp. here's a couple of things i've been wanting to talk about:

i recently bought a harmonium from ebay with some extra cash i made for helping illustrate a design for a washington DC sculpture. the harmonium is really neat looking. but arrived in a less-than-playable condition with slit bellows and some cracked wood. i hope to get this fixed soon but am having trouble finding a good repair place. as it turns out, there aren't any harmonium repair shops in the city. i thought the accordion stores might be able to help, becuase yes... there are accordion shops in this city. quite a few actually. but they all said it wasn't there specialty. so i am still searching before i can play it. it's a french-invented instrument, but is popular in indian music - so perhaps i need to look for where one can get other indian instruments repaired.

for those of you who don't know what a harmonium is, here's a picture

while a pump organ would've been ideal. this is the smaller, more portable version that will allow me to play some nice diddies hopefully. so by now, i've attained some pretty great little instruments : harmonium, saw, wooden flute, ceramic flute, toy ukulele, melodica-of-sorts-from-cracker-barrel-, nose flute, fart whistle, programmable music box. i think i can craft some good melodies with these instruments just as soon as i have the time.

as far as big instruments. i also own: three guitars, an upright bass, an electric bass, and a piano. the piano sits in a high-school acquiantance mother's house until i have room to move it somewhere. i hope it's doing ok.

the only other instrument i'd really like right now is a sousaphone. i think that'd be a fun one to have. albeit bigger than some of the others. also the most brassy. my borther dutch always says it was invented by dr. seuss and only named after john philip sousa. i'd say he's right.

as for music i've been recently listening to:
i got the new bjork (volta) - i don't love it yet. though there's one good track 1 on it.
new bill callahan (woke on a whale heart - pretty good. not my favorite, but good
iron & wine (sea & the rhythm EP) - i like it a lot. simple and nice.
ween (12 country classics) - funny and good. my music meets my sister's i'd say.
bad plus (prog) - some great building and repeating those guys do.
subway accordion players album - he's much better live at the b'way/lafayette stop
toby goodshank (di santa ragione or something) - real good. craig's right.
wilco (sky blue sky) - nels is great in this pseudo-poppy setting
hoots & hellmouth - high school friends good timey great music.

for those of you who don't know hoots and hellmouth - please go to this link and listen to some tunes: HOOTS AND HELLMOUTH MYSPACE PAGE

as for other things i've been taking in:

i recently bought  o brother where art thou after quoting it all weekend at my brother's bachelor party. it's real great. real great. i want to watch it a bunch more and have some friends like massimo or adam hopkins do the same so we can incorporate it into our vernacular. things like "any you boys smitties?" or "i don't want fop, i'm a dapper dan man"

also. i recently watched an older animation from a canadian illustrator named richard condie. the animation is 9 minutes long and called THE BIG SNIT. if you have 9 minutes. i suggest you click on those capitalized words just prior and enjoy some good eye-shaking and accordion playing.

ok. what else what else...

oh... i designed my drafting table last week. it is an exact schhematic of what i hope to soon have in my apartment. every nook, cranny angle and height is matched to meet my needs.  for instance. the table height is 37.5 inches, which is exactly 52% of my height. which if you'll read an old musing, i think that is the ideal height for standing drawing. also the removeable dowells fit my plexi-glas tops, alvin cutting mats, and allow me to press my woodblocks against whilst cutting so i don't gouge out my fingers. the angles of the raisable table top are idea for drawing and painting and the like. the drawer fits my hokuba lighttable that i will soon buy, and my schaedler ruler and papers perfectly along with my olfa cutting blades and wood cutting tools.... the foot rests are ideal leg length for the long-torsoed-short-legs-tj that is typing this very musing. ok... there's more... but enough talking about it... why don't i just show you.



here's the full view. do you like my perspective digital drawing? hmm? its accurate alright. you can build off of these exact measurements... well.. not this small or it'd be adrafting table for a mouse MWAH AHA HAH HSHHAHAHAHAHAH!!.. ok... sorry.
the green ish area on top of the desk is where the plexi and cutting matt wil sit, which will be held in by removeable dowells which are held in place by the dark holes which are to be drilled into the wooden top.

the dowels are 1" x 1" x a few inches less than the size of the table top...which is something i though up in a dream actually"  (bill murray in life aquatic... see how fun that was to incorporate that quote?... now if i can just get my friends to do the same with o brother where art thou)... but seriously, they can hold the matts, but also you can remove the matts and store them under the table and move the dowels in for thigns like regular desk work and typing, or smaller woodcutting or what-have-you.


this last bit is just the drawer view. but it also shows where you can store the dowells behind the drawer and how all the items are to fit. the great thing about this desk is that everything can be self-contained and you can store everything if need be. it utilizes a space that is very specific for my needs. now i just need someone who can build things like this to bring my dream into fruition. if you or anyone you know might be able to do this... please email me.

ok. a few last things.

the other week, fiamma and i rode a train to philadelphia that stopped not once, but twice for two separate medical emergencies. at the first medical emergency, most people got off the train, but not fiamma and i or a handful of others. prior to this emergency, the train was overcrowded and loud, but when 90% of the people swapped to a later, more local train, the train was left pretty hushed and quiet except for one grumpy man that kind of looked like the actor from SHINE. but anyways, in the quietness, i cam upon a sight that appeased my eyes. here's a couple pics that don't do justice to the scene.






in another mode of transportation ( a car) i saw a less-appeasable sight of someone getting kicked in the face by three others. i felt immediately awkward and bad and had a bit of adrenaline pumping. a couple cars were already stopped on this dark street in brooklyn watching the spectacle and i can only hope one of them had already called 911 by that time. one person getting kicked in the face by another is horrible enough, but one young guy surrounded by 3 others late at night on a street near the BQE is a worrisome thing.

on a less tragic note. this morning... i did something funny to myself. i half-awoke with a dry throat and knew i left an entire full 76ers plastic cup of water on my bedside table. for one reason or another, i am guessing it was the part of me that wanted to remain asleep, i attempted to drink the water from a lying-on-your-back position. and for one reason or another, i decided to grab the cup upside-down as well. meaning that the pinky was near the brim of the glass and the index finger near the base. needless to say, these two poor decisions along with me baing only half awake, lefd to a scenario of an empty cup, a mouthful of water, and the rest all over my body and the bed.

i'll end with this picture from my brother's bachelor party where tommy brydebell fell asleep in a good way. and also... i like pretzel rods.


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