Sunday, May 30, 2010

10 October 1996

Untitled (Fallen Angel) 1981

Dust Heads 1982

Untitled (Red Man) 1981

The Field Next to the Other Road

Rachel, who I had met in 1985 and who is pictured above, was attending art school in Philadelphia in 1996. One of her classes had arranged for a field trip to New York to visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art and several galleries in Soho. After checking out the Met, Ray and I decided to sit out back and watch the roller bladers in Central Park. We were young voyeurs in a trendy world we only knew of in movies and storybooks. Such a simple, brief snippet in my life, but without question, one of my fondest and happiest moments.
After the museum we all headed to Soho, with Rachel and I ten minutes ahead of the group. We stopped at a gallery and saw George Rodrigue's Blue Dog pieces for the first time. One on the fuel tank of a Harley Davidson. We walked on and stopped at Todd Oldham's shop that had gorgeous wallpaper in the fitting rooms and clothes too expensive to touch. Then we came upon a gallery owned by Tony Shafrazi. It was not until many years later that I learned the importance of this man on the art world. But that's a story for another time. As luck would have it, the gallery was showing the works of Jean-Michel Basquiat, a favourite of mine. Ray and I were the only ones in the gallery except for three grown ups chatting by a desk. I asked the woman if I was allowed to take pictures and she said so long as they were for personal use only. (Um, hi, I was like nineteen, clearly they weren't going anywhere.) So I was able to snap the above photos just before Rachel's class came bursting into the place with ferocious energy. But those few quiet minutes spent standing inches from so many significantly beautiful pieces was one of those spectacular moments that I visit in my memory time and time again.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Seth MacFarlane

So handsome...I betchya he'd look good on a lawnmower...

Sunday, May 23, 2010

The End Is Here

Sadly, the day has arrived; it's the last episode of Lost ever. I'll be heading to Bishop's place in a few and I am bringing along my usual Series Finale Treat - cupcakes! Well, except for the last ep of Six Feet Under where I brought a chocolate mousse graveyard with headstones. But cupcakes were present for Sex and the City, The Sopranos, and Carnivàle and so tonight is no different. Here they are, each carrying the name of a character we have grown to love. A bonus heart can be found on our favourite fellas. Ah, the gentleman of Lost...
(i feel an overwhelming sense of guilt (damn that catholic upbringing!) for having to omit so many fabulous characters like desmond, faraday, bernard, walt, michael, rousseau, and richard. just cuz they didn't get a cupcake doesn't mean i don't have love in my heart for them!)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

One Degree From the Duke

My dear friend, Laine, worked at The Scripps Clinic in La Jolla back in the sixties. She was a free and fabulous spirit even then, complete with her yellow convertible VW Bug, the trademark automobile for a true hippie chick. Last year Laine told me that working at Scripps allowed her to meet several interesting celebrities. Among them were Andy Williams, J. Edgar Hoover, and John Wayne. The John Wayne story is my favourite. She spoke of how his beautiful Latina wife would drive him to the hospital in an old station wagon and of how one time she got to escort Mr. Wayne down the hallway while he was dressed in his bathrobe. Laine said that he was incredibly tall and incredibly kind. I love to hear her tell this story because her eyes open wide and sparkle. Her face breaks into a sweet smile and one can see that she is remembering back to how pleased she was to discover that the man she had admired for so many years was everything she imagined he would be. And then some.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Somerset Street

Marina and I were at Tacconelli's for Sunday brunch not long ago and I snapped this photo. The pizza was good, not as good as we had hoped considering that all anyone every talks about regarding the neighbourhood is Stock's pound cake and Tacconelli's pizza. It should be stated that I, along with all of my siblings and maternal family members, were brought up with Stock's cake at every bday party. (We're Irish Catholic, so that's a boatload of bdays, honey.) Stock's is without question, thee best pound cake ever created. Ever.
As for pizza, Tacconelli's is good, but they misspelled Margherita Pizza and tomato on the menu. Hey, I spell stuff wrong, too, but c'mon, take some pride in your business and realise that Margherita is pizza and Margarita is a cocktail. But regardless of misspellings and so-so pizza, the door across the street from the restaurant was fabulous. It reminded me of the door in Gaslight and I kept expecting a cockney accented Angela Lansbury to present herself at the threshold. Alas, t'was not to be.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Whachya Readin'?

And here is bookcase number two. This one holds my more recent readings. (Clearly Henry Rollins is my favourite author because his words rock my proverbial socks off. Holla.) The bottom shelf houses my college textbooks that I couldn't bring myself to sell, as well as a handful of albums that didn't fit in my record cabinet.
I often wonder how the authors of these books would feel about who their book sidles up next to. Would Lou Reed be disturbed to know that his Raven rests beside Fred Rogers? I like to think he'd actually be quite pleased. On the other hand, I kinda feel like Bret Easton Ellis would be mildly horrified to find that American Psycho is cuddled up with Valley of the Dolls.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Cartoon Beavers Exist!

Not long ago my cousin Zach and I were taking a walk near the swamp by my parents' house. On our stroll I noticed that a bunch of trees were gnawed down to pencil points like in cartoons. I was automatically amused because in the twenty years I lived in that house I never once saw any beavers and I never actually thought that beavers chewed trees down like this. In short, I was delighted. Luckily I had my little Elph cam in my back pocket and was able to snap some fotos. Here they be:

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Woodstock Art

Melis and I went to Woodstock Trading Company in Cherry Hill a few days ago and on our way back to the car I noticed this awesome flower pot sculpture. Snapped a pic for all one of my readers, so enjoy!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Six Degrees of Me

Everyone's gotta have a parlour trick, something that impresses guests at cocktail parties. For me that talent is that I can connect myself to nearly any celebrity in six degrees or less. My favourite connection is to John Lennon. Now, I personally feel that I am one degree from John Lennon because I knew someone who met him directly. Others would believe it to be two degrees, but this is my game, so essentially, it's my rules. Okay, so when I was nineteen, my therapist was musician/artist John Palumbo. In the late 70s and early 80s John and his wife lived in NYC not far from The Dakota on 72nd and Central Park West. If memory serves, Palumbo was at a local shop (and for some reason I feel like there were oranges involved?? So I'm assuming that John was snagging some produce), anyway...Palumbo was at the store when he looks up to see John Lennon. Palumbo managed a hello and Lennon smiled and said hello back. Over the course of time from that day until Lennon's death, John would see him periodically and nod hello as they passed eachother. How cool is that??

so there's me...
to John... John Lennon!One degree of separation, baby!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Diane Arbus III

Castle in Disneyland, CA 1962

A hauntingly eerie photograph with the perfect amount of mist and creepiness. Then a single swan floats gently across the moat. Slightly bizarre and strangely beautiful.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Dear Hunter

Thinking back to February 21st, 2005: I worked 2 til closing at the café and after clocking in, I threw on my apron and took to busing the tables. As I strolled over to the info desk to drop off books that had been left on the tables, I saw a small display of Hunter Thompson books. I looked up to Jesse and gravely asked, "Did Hunter die?" He nodded a somber yes and I drudged back to my post behind the counter with my shoulders slumped and feeling all sorts of crappy. I then called my parents house-line and got my dad. I asked if he had heard if a writer named Hunter Thompson had passed away and if so, how did he die. Dad had heard on the news that this Thompson fella died yesterday and apparently had shot himself. After I hung up I immediately texted Skippy, a regular and die hard Thompson fan, my brother Xavier, and Penny, a coworker and close friend who had admired Hunter's work for years. Skippy sent back: I heard. Shit. Xave: No way. Shit, that sucks. Penny: I know. I can't believe it. I really loved him. As for me, I wish Hunter had hung in there a bit longer, but man, he left behind one hell of a legacy and I do so love his words.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

The Wall

Several years ago Jacob and I went to DC for the day. It was a cool, rainy, sober day. Neither of us had ever been to the Vietnam Memorial and I don't think that we fully realised how affected we would be or how overwhelming and emotional the experience would be for us. It was as close to silence as I've ever known and even the skateboarders passing through the park seemed to act as though treading on sacred burial grounds. The only sound heard was that of a little boy, maybe five years old, who was walking with his father. He stopped and loudly stated, "Daddy, sumbuddy fergot dare prize." The father tried to quite his son but he continued, "But Daddy, it's a good prize and sumbuddy fergot it!" Jake and I looked down to see that a Veteran had left a Purple Heart. It broke through the sadness to think that a medal given in honor of great service to one's country was referred to, quite sweetly referred to, as a prize. It was the best part of our day.

(all photos by me! lisa star)

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Nothing is more liberating than forgiveness. Forgiveness comforts you in the way that being covered in warm clothes fresh from the dryer comforts you. Few things in this life are as difficult to achieve, but the struggle to reach it rewards you tenfold when you attain it.

Monday, May 3, 2010

I Want

A love like the one between Parry and Lydia.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

I Wish

Reading Wish Jar put me in mind of my little book of wishes. Few things feel as blissful as looking back through the pages and checking off the wishes that have come true. Some will forever be a wish, such as i wish i knew him before the war or i wish there were no such thing as dust. It's so annoying. Here's a few of the wishes that came true:
~i wish that Pier 1 still made those cranberry balsam candles (even tho they discontinued them again, it was still astonishing that after i wrote it down, the next christmas there they were-the best scented candle ever!)
~i wish i didn't feel hate so much.
~i wish for "Dear Frankie" for Christmas. hope! hope!
~i wish i weren't allergic to doggies and kitties. (thank you Claritin!)
~i wish i could write a cool looking capital g. (it's vastly improved, tho not perfect)
~i wish that Jenny Penny didn't spend so much of her time working. (i feel completely responsible for her getting laid off b/c of this wish. but she is currently employed again.)
~i wish i had more time (guess i brought unemployment on myself that time)
~i wish i could sew or knit or crochet (i can knit!)
~i wish i had a more reliable car. (but i still jean-michel!) (jean-michel was my mazda that has since gone to fr. michael)
~i wish The Pop Shop in NYC never closed. I Keith Haring. (well the website is back so that counts!)
~i wish i could afford new carpeting (i now have fabulous phony hardwood floors!)
~i wish i could stop staring at his picture. (can't even remeber his stoopid face)
~i wish he wasn't the president. he irritates me. (yay! i like dubya so much more since he isn't in office.)
~i wish Allison would email me.
There's a few more to add to my book, like i wish that keri smith gets better right quick and i wish you all the happiness in the world, but there'll always be more wishes. Hopefully there will be many more to check off in the not so far off future! x's and o's to you, dear reader!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

What's on your bookshelf?

This is the bookcase that primarily holds books from my past. The ones I read in grade school (My Darling, My Hamburger and The True History of the Elephant Man) and then some from high school (Silence of the Lambs, Coal Miner's Daughter, and Slaughterhouse 5). A handful are more current, like the Sin City series and Motherless Brooklyn, but so many are from the 80s and 90s and a handful I haven't even read (sorry Ms. Bacall, I swear I'll read By Myself this year, I promise, promise).