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Tuesday, November 14, 2006


AAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRGGH!!! I'm going stir crazy, I need a beer, and while rummaging through a box full of memorabila from my misspent youth I chanced upon this twenty-five-year-old button that reminds me of one of the most basic facts in life:

Indeed it is, and there's none for me at the moment. Thanks for reminding me, stupid button.

This week my two days off have found me pulling out my hair in an attempt to get further in my National Novel Writers Month project, an impass made all the more frustrating because it's a contemporary fantasy piece that I've had brewing for a while. The further I get with it, the less I like it; it comes off like I'm too in love with my words, and has a flavor of wannabe "clever" to it, two things I fucking hate from writers. I was ready to scrap what I've written and start another work entirely, but I had the good sense to run it past a certain Muse before I did anything hasty. She advised me to stick with it and tell the editor in me to fuck off; "Don't read it, write it," she said. "Think of it pruely as a first draft. Just get it done." She was, of course, absolutely right, and nailed the problem right on the head. I'm highly critiical of most things, but am harshest on myself and what I do, therefore making myself my own worst enemy. My much-needed "stop being such a pussy" pep talk from the Muse was a perfect tonic, and I will return to my novel tomorrow, but today I needed to get away from my laptop and haul my ass out into the real world. Thanks to some weird twists of fate involving my bank account and some overdue freelance checks I'm more broke than usual, so my budget would be low, but there's a lot of fun to be had if you have enough cash for some lunch, coupled with a working knowledge of where to browse and a fully-loaded Metrocard.

I did my usual trip to Crif Dogs on St. Mark's Place near Avenue A, and now that I have a decent digital camera I can capture the wonder of the vintage Times Square condom machines adorning the wall in a place that sells the most phallic of comfort foods.

I just love the idea of a vending machine with the word "poontang" on it.

After a yummy lunch of a couple of cheese dogs, a small order of tater tots — which was larger and cheaper than an order of "super-sized" McDonald's fries — and a birch beer, I sauntered over to Toy Tokyo, an overpriced Nirvana of imported toys from the Land of the Rising Sun. I frequently go there to torture myself by checking out the cool toys that I can in no way afford, and the agony was no less this time around, especially when I saw this twisted toybox escapee:

How different would my childhood adventures with my G.I. Joes have been if Alex from A CLOCKWORK ORANGE had been a member of the Adventure Team? Perhaps that's an idea best not considered, but I would love to see the look of horror and disgust on the face of Cherie, the mother of my niece Sadie-Rain, as I presented the little one with this toy, proclaiming him to be barbie's new boyfriend. But that scenario will never come to pass because little Alex, my favorite droogie, bears a price tag of three-hundred and seventy-five bucks. Yes, you read that right.

I then made my way back up St. Mark's Place toward the subway back to Brooklyn, and was psyched to see a piece of old New York coming back in a big, anachronistic way. I'd seen a news item on the return of the old Automat concept, but was a little surprised to see one opening in the East Village rather than Times Square, perhaps the city's ultimate crossroads, traversed by countless people every day. But, whatever. It was nice to see a bit of the old Manhattan spirit reincarnated, even on a tourist trap block like St. Mark's Place.

It looks a little too much like the future filtered through the sensibilities of Sid & Marty Kroft, and I'm willing to bet that the food sucks as much as the rest of the food on this block — Fuck the Dojo! — but at least it's a novel idea. Let's see how long it lasts.

Then, just befoore I hit the subway, I saw this odd vision.

Yes, some kid was wearing the sacred image of the late, great G.G. Allin as a loincloth, a gesture I'm sure he would have appreciated. Was this some kind of sign? If so, I'm at a loss as to its meaning, but I can assure you that when I get into the kitchen at the barbecue joint tomorrow afternoon I will crank "I Wanna Piss On You," singing along and giggling like a sophomoric idiot. Then, back to the novel.

I need some osh-osh...


Julie said...

I like that the condoms come in "five seductive colors." I was unaware that red, blue, green, yellow, and black were seductive colors. I've got to go revamp, and I mean vamp, my wardrobe.

Red Stapler said...

The food at Bamn! tastes a lot better than you'd think. Ok, true, I was drunk when I ate there, but it was tasty and cheap! Two things I am fond of.

C'mon. PB&J empanadas and Mac&Cheese croquettes. ::drool::

Anonymous said...

Jim Browski says:

Bamn is, according to the sign, "open 25 hours" . I hope they cook better than they count.