Why not one more?

January 30, 2009

I thought I might as well upload the other video from that night.

Except for the neon, the Obama posters and some contemporary clothing choices, this place had a bit of a juke joint feeling.  I was all ages and all styles, no matter what the music.  The DJ is a woman in her 60s.  She’s got every line dance imaginable, plus all sorts of things popular in Cleveland and maybe nowhere else.

It was fun.  The next night we went to a place with a mechanical bull.

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Skeet’s

January 5, 2009

I went with my friend on the 1st to this place called “Skeet’s.”  When people started to show up, we were kind of sitting on some stools at the edge of the dance floor, people watching.  At one point, the man with the beard, who had been sitting at a table, slid across the floor James Brown style and started into the best dancing we would see that night. I think watching him may have helped my soul.  Yep.  Age ain’t nothin’ but a number.

Oh, and he looked a lot like my sixth grade teacher.  I think there’s a pretty good chance he might be my sixth grade teacher.  If my mom’s newspaper monitoring is correct, he’s principal somewhere now.

bus stop 3

January 2, 2009

bus stop 3

This is not my actual block. But it’s fairly close. I was waiting there, so I took a picture.

bus stop 2

January 2, 2009

bus stop 2

This is another view. You can see the wonderful Lake Mendota in the background.

View from the Bus Stop

January 2, 2009

view from the bus stop

I’m posting a few pics of the way one of the bus stops by my place looked in August or September. I guess folks might call it pleasant.

My memory fails me.

July 7, 2008


Someone sent me a link to this video today.  The person framing it is Zoe Kravitz, the daughter of Lenny Kravitz and Lisa Bonet.  I was struck first of all at how much the kid looks like her mom.  Then I was struck by how vividly I remember how the birth of that kid got Bonet booted from The Cosby Show because nothing about the whole thing fit the image the show’s producers wanted to project.  

I watched it twice, trying to move faces that only seemed familiar into the category of fully recognized and then to remember the names of people I really recognize.  I have a Rolodex in my head, an old fashioned one. It spins slowly.

Sure, comment on my psyche.

May 17, 2008

Stephen King

I haven’t been a regular nap taker for a while.  But today was an exception.  Last night I slept from around 11 until around 4.  And I had to give an exam at 7:45.  Then I spent time talking with my TA, giving some advice that I need to learn to take myself.

When I got home, the first news I heard was of a family friend who had given up her leg while I was giving an exam.  “She came through it with flying colors.”  What does that mean in this case?  By the time that conversation was over, I was already back in bed with my head under the covers.

I remember rehearsing parts of the day’s conversations in my dreams, specifically images associated with my jumbled advice.  What I didn’t remember until some time after the nap was the part about Stephen King.

I’m not sure where it came from.  Perhaps it’s all about the name.  I’ve found myself telling humorous stories about my friend Stephen a few times this week.  But I don’t remember thinking about Stephen King, though I do think about him occasionally because of his frankness about his own writing, because I enjoy his reviews, because we share a birthday.

In the dream, I was at a book signing that was not very crowded.  Someone in the line asked which book I had.  I looked at the cover of the trade paperback.  It was peach cardboard, not even glossy.  It looked like a self-published book a textbook from the 1970s.  Something was written in black typeface on the very top.  But somehow, in addition to the title, the book had my first name on it.  No one else had the same one.  When I walked up to Stephen King, he asked me to give him the book so he could “engrave” it for me.  Although I noticed his odd word choice, I thought he would sign it, maybe write a note.  But when he handed it back to me, he had done this thing that I can’t remember the name for.  He had added words to the cover, but not with ink.  They were letters made by dimpling the cardboard, the way Braille is done.  But these were not Braille letters.  I could look at them and read them.  The words were something about me, about my place in the text.  I don’t want to use the word “ownership.” But it’s a bit like that.  Maybe “stake” would be correct.  Maybe it was something about my piece of some proverbial pie.

I hated even writing that cliché.  Recounting dreams often brings frustration.  Some of these limitations with this particular dream would be easier to manage if I could actuallly recall what the dream words were.  Unlike most people, I do see words, numbers, and names in my dreams.  These are not coming back now.  What returns is the feeling of taking a book, touching warm flesh, catching a look in his eye, and having the rare experience of feeling words that were about me, for me, not with my mind or heart, but with my fingertips.

At least there’s this.

May 3, 2008


I took this after what seemed to be a very long day yesterday. I had just left a memorial service for someone who died way too young. And I thought for a moment, I might have this misfortune of a tornado on top off all that.

I wish someone else I know would see this.

April 28, 2008

I was kind of spent on Saturday and decided to go out to a movie. Since I’ve lived in Madison, I’ve sometimes found myself choosing the theater and then the movie instead of the other way around. Anyway, I saw this movie. The trailer doesn’t really convey everything. It’s one of the oddest films I’ve ever seen. Yet, there’s no one to talk to about it.

Now I owe posts for yesterday and today.

Hip Hop as a Movement Week

April 28, 2008


This is the keynote panel for the conference. You can see Jeff Chang, Wendy Day, Davey D and Chuck D. Marc Bamuthi Joseph is on the end of the table, but not in my mediocre photograph. Check out his site.

Prior to this panel, I got to moderate one on gender and sexuality in hip hop and hip hop studies with Dawn-Elissa Fischer, Bakari Kitwana, Mark Anthony Neal, and , Gaye Theresa Johnson. I got to do that because of a scheduling mix-up. Just call me MC Second Choice.

The crazy thing is that this post represents a small percentage of the talented people I got to check out. The week was fun, and left me feeling good, but with a letdown at the end. Now I’m back to my humdrum existence.