Tuesday, November 9, 2010


OMG...do you guys like superheroes? Like in real life?

How about the movie Kick-Ass? Did you leave the theater, striding up the carpeted incline to the uplifting music thinking, "Yeah, I am so going to have to finally do that!" And if not, what the fsck is wrong with you?!?

Did you wear a cape as a child? (I did - I think it was a beach towel fastened with a safety pin) Well, why not pull it out of the back of the closet and come out as a Real Life Super Hero?

This site is awesome! You could spend hours, or at least halves-of-hours, just repeatedly hitting the 'Random Page' button.

These guys just dress up and go out and foil crimes. Yeah, that's all. How do you spend your Thursday nights? Watching Community? OK, I can see that; it's an excellent show. But are you still on the couch when Trump's ugly mug is on? Not these guys.

One of them says he goes around spray painting over graffiti:

“I use a cell phone, flashlight and a can of gray spray paint all the time. The spray paint is to paint a neutral color over gang graffiti, thus reclaiming the neighborhood for the people and not the gangs. It's supposed to be a lethal insult to the gang (meaning they have the ‘right’ to kill you for doing it.).”

Myself, I hold my keyring in my fist when walking after dark, making sure that the individual keys stick out between my clenched fingers. Kick ass!

You know what else is a good movie? Undercover Brother.

Listening to: Best Friends Forever - BFF Theme Song
via FoxyTunes

Thursday, October 28, 2010


...I can see by the fact that the NaNoWriMo badge over there on the right is not functioning correctly anymore that it must be about time for NANoWriMo2010.

What is today? Or I suppose what I want to know is when is Nov. 1? Monday?!? Yikes...I'm still not done editing from last year's project, but good news: I think I'm almost to the point where editing becomes counterproductive. I mean, anything more than 7 edits and you probably were starting out with crap in the first place, right?

This year my book will be about a goalkeeper. I know, I can probably stop right there, you're already sold, can't wait to get a peek. Patience, weirdos. Follow my progress here.

Listening to: Rachid Taha - Rock el Casbah
via FoxyTunes

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Shuffle knows you...

It really does. Better than you know yourself. Or maybe it's just more brutally honest than you can allow in the dank tenement room you occupy, not even noticing the smell of crushed buckets of old chicken bones, oblivious to the clatter and crunch of empty beer cans underfoot as you walk the well-worn path to the fridge and back to the couch again, where you more collapse than sit on the darkened sticky cushions....what was I taking about?

Never mind. Let's us click on "shuffle" and delve straightforward into the murky depths of the subconscious and see what creepily brushes against us, shall we?

1) Fuck and Run - Liz Phair

2) Bricks Crumble - Dälek

3) Fur Elise - Beethoven

4) Do You Love Me Now, Jr. - Breeders feat. J Mascis

5) Help I'm Alive - Metric

6) Mouthful of Diamonds - Phantogram

7) Seether - Veruca Salt

8) We Never Change - Coldplay

9) Been It - Cardigans

10) Do You Love Me Now? - El Jezel

11) Send His Love To Me - PJ Harvey

OK, first off, what the hell happened to Liz? I mean, White Chocolate Space Egg? WTF was that about? How do you go from Exile in Guyville to that tripe?!?!?

Now that I've gotten that out of my system, let's see what has been revealed:

  • 8 of 11 songs are from women. Not surprising, given subject's tastes. Music from a guy's point of view is *so over*.
  • Interesting mix of genres; classical, hip-hop, techno, alt., etc.
  • Same song twice, but by different artists. Subject has a thing for covers. Too bad most of them suck. I mean really. Just google covers of Suffragette City, for example. Horrible - just horrible! Why would you try to do that better than David Bowie?
  • Fuck and Run, Bricks Crumble, Help I'm Alive, Seether, We Never Change, Been It...our subject seems to harbor defeatist, passive-aggressive tendencies.

How, how freaky is that?

Listening to: The Fratellis - Chelsea Dagger
via FoxyTunes

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Dying is easy...

...writing is hard.

Well, not the actual writing. It's the editing - the keeping of consistency, the tying up of loose ends, the ensuring congruity of symbols and motifs...ugh. That's probably why I decided to just have a couple of beers and watch hockey when I got home form work tonight. And then I wasted time on the internet. Some highlights of my travels:




and of course, facebook, blogger and youtube.

Back at it tomorrow. Bleah.

Listening to: Camera Obscura - French Navy
via FoxyTunes

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Zenstant Film!

First, a bit of business. Almighty Google has shown no results for the usage of the phrase "Zenstant Film", so I hereby lay claim to it (patent pending!). Refer to this blog's Creative Commons license with any questions.

OK, now that that's out of the way, here's the first in what will (hopefully) be a series of short, short films - simple moments captured for posterity, kind of like the plastic bag footage in American Beauty, but hopefully not quite as pretentious. Allow me to present "Crunchy Ice":

Listening to: Phantogram - "When I'm Small"
via FoxyTunes

Sunday, February 28, 2010

If life has taught me one lesson repeatedly, it's to know when I'm beat...

Seriously? It can't be! Has it really been a month since my last post? Urg...blogging is hard! Well, I suppose I ought to do a quick update:

First of all, FAWM has been, for me, an abject failure. Sure I could place the blame for this failure on external factors...in fact, yeah, that's what I'll do. Pretty much the entire month of February was dedicated to finishing my rough draft of my novel from NaNoWriMo (tentative title: Grave Accent. Or, maybe, Imp. Haven't decided yet.)

But it's finally done! At least, as much as you can call the first draft of writing "done". Now begins the work of editing. Ugg. If writing were basketball, the task of editing would be analogous to wiping up the sweat from the floorboards. I'll also start to deconstruct my writing methods, to try to make future NaNoWriMos a little more smooth and manageable. Kinda like ScarJo's hair.

You're welcome.

Despite not having the time to finish FAWM, I was somehow able to squeeze in a few movies this weekend, all of which I'd recommend heartily:

Zombieland: Not the best zombie movie ever (Shaun of the Dead takes the honors there), but definitely makes the short list. You know any movie where the sentence "The worst part was the bit with Bill Murray" has to be pretty awesome.

Moon: Trippy, heady movie with great atmosphere (Ha! Get it?!?).

A Serious Man: Man oh man, I love the Cohen Bros. This is not their best movie ever; in fact, I thought it was a little weak after I saw it. But the more I think about it, the more I realize what a great job they did with the theme of "The Uncertainty of Life". Very meta.

The Invention of Lying: Ricky Gervais has an amazing talent for combining comedy with a genuinely touching story. On a whole other level than almost all other RomComs.

Oh, and one more recommendation: Check out this cover of Britney Spear's Toxic, by alt-country band "Or, the Whale" (no idea what the story is with the name...). Seriously. Better than the original (don't get me started on my love/hate Britney sentiments; maybe some other time). Free download here.

That is all.

Listening to: The Pixies - (In Heaven) Lady In The Radiator Song
via FoxyTunes

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

FAWM Update I

Not much progress so far on FAWM; just a couple of tracks begun and nowhere near finished. Still lots to do, hours and hours of mixing and editing.

Anything that makes my life, vis-a-vis music production, easier is, by definition, awesome. I'd like to share a couple of resources that I've found very helpful:

Freesound is a huge online interactive community where people and/or possibly cyborgs come together to share and find sound samples. Whether it's a mellow atmospheric pad to back your composition, or just a really cool sound, such as an old school ringing phone, you can find it at freesound.org.

Digifish is an Australian site with sound samples so shockingly good I'm surprised that the Australian government hasn't shut it down yet. Just make sure to get permission before using their sounds in your compositions (it's super easy, even I could do it - just shoot them an email).

Best of luck to everyone in their endeavors this month!

Listening to: Mogwai - Like Herod
via FoxyTunes

Sunday, January 31, 2010


February Album Writing Month is in the offing!

14 songs in 28 days - sounds hard, right? Due to time constraints associated with the ongoing edit of my entry for the last NaNoWriMo, I've decided to do an instrumental album; sort of a concept deal.

The rough concept I have in mind right now is that it will be a soundtrack that follows an alien spaceship marooned on a strange planet. Sounds weird and/or stupid, I know, but I think I can make it work - I've already got three or four songs outlined in my head.

I'll be (trying) to upload them to the player in my sidebar on a (semi-) regular basis. Wish me luck!

Listening to: Beach House - Norway
via FoxyTunes

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Hey ya!

Just got the news that my entry (Get Ready For The Weirdness) just garnered 2nd place over at the Clarity of Night writing contest! I feel just like the Soviet Olympic hockey team in 1980, only without the crushing oppression and fear that my family might spend the next four years in Gulag.

In all seriousness though, I am so seriously stoked! This is huge for me, and with so many great entries, a real honor.

Thanks to everyone who voted, and also to everyone who participated. You are all awesome! Tonight, I drink to you!

Listening to: OutKast - Hey Ya!
via FoxyTunes

Monday, January 18, 2010

Drug of Convenience

I've heard it said before that there are are no "recovered" (past tense) addicts, just addicts who've shifted their priorities. I'm not sure who said it; maybe I even made it up, though it sounds perhaps a little too clever for me. The point is this: The drug that brought my life into the wall was weed, which, I realize, is pathetic. And maybe that gives you an idea of the sort of stuff from which I am made.

Sometimes - though not very often, as I kept my crumbling inner life extremely well hidden - people ask me if I miss it; if the desire for drugs that once controlled me still calls. I'm not stupid; I know the answer, the only answer that a recovering addict can give: "Yes, sometimes, but I know it's just not worth it." Bullshit - all of it - every word.

The real answer is this: "Yes, I think about it literally every day. When I find my self alone and bored, it's all I can think about. I mourn my drug of choice's passing as I would the death of a family member. I was watching a movie the other day where the characters were taking hits off a bong they were passing around - I noticed that each time one of them took a hit, my mouth opened, and I took in a slow, steady, deep draw of breath.

"I made a big show out of deleting every contact out of my phone, but I know with religious certainty how my numb addict fingers will dial any number of them, the beeps and boops of the keypad hitting my ear like a symphony as my virtuoso fingers play the keypad like a concert instrument. But I don't. I can't even say for sure why; maybe I'm just getting used to not running myself ragged around an elaborate scaffolding, forever patching holes in my stories and keeping my structure of lies from crumbling around me. And it's nice not to be completely exhausted all the time. So yes, I suppose I know it's just not worth it, but that doesn't make it's siren song any less tempting."

Back to shifted priorities; from my drug of choice I had to switch to a drug of convenience, of pragmatism: Coffee. I come downstairs every morning and put on a kettle, poured from a water filter to get all the chlorine, salts, and everything else man deems fit to either introduce or not filter out. This water is pure, uncut, the best you can get. Next I scoop the coffee (fair trade, organic) and three scoops into a french press - none of that automatic drip swill for me - this french press is an elegant work of art, glass and chrome, imported from Europe. By now the kettle is whistling; I wait till it hits a certain pitch, indicating a particular fervor to the boil, before I take it off the burner and let it sit for thirty seconds. Yes, I actually do watch the second hand on my kitchen clock. When it's time, I pour the water in. The grounds seem to accept the steaming water as an extension of their own being, and they suck it up, becoming somehow more than the sum of their parts.

From there, I wait three minutes, until the grounds have all risen to the top, and the bubbles that were on top of the grounds have popped, leaving little craters on the grainy, quicksand surface. Then I insert and push down the plunger, all the way down, then bring it back up, and push it back down. At this point, my intuition takes over; it may be done, or may need one more plunge. A subtle calculus aided by each of my senses at once will let me know which is the right action. From there, I pour the coffee into another, identical french press, clean, sparkling, and once it is full, the plunger goes in - more to keep the heat in than anything else.

This ritual is the sacred to me, nearly - but not quite - inducing the same trance-like state that unrolling a baggie, cleaning the pipe, filling the bowl, and rubbing my thumb across the cross hatched metal wheel of a Bic lighter used to bring.

Listening to: Sleater-Kinney - The Fox
via FoxyTunes

Monday, January 11, 2010

If this blog were a dog, it'd be dead...

Long time, no write, bloggosphere.

Well, that's not entirely true - I've been writing like an MFer for weeks and weeks now, desperately trying to get my novel finished and edited to the point that I'd feel OK sending it off to get printed (one of the prizes for winning NaNoWriMo is a certificate for a single printing of your novel. Only one catch: must be redeemed by June!).

I've taken a brief break from the novel to do - guess what - more writing! I've just put the finishing touches on an entry for the latest Clarity of Night writing contest. He be the fruits of me labor:

Get Ready For The Weirdness
By Kurt Hendricks

"Get ready for the weirdness," I said, turning the knob.

We were blinded as the huge picture window was revealed; it was a brilliant, clear day outside. As our eyes were adjusting to the sudden brightness, Lisa gasped and took a step back. I thought she was startled by the rather large disco ball hanging from the ceiling, but even as the thought was forming, a solid 'thwack' reverberated through the room.

I expected some reaction from Mayme, but she didn't stir from her seat by the window. I walked over, repeating her name, louder and more urgent each time. An apprehensive hand reached out to touch hers, which was clutching the joystick controller for her electric wheelchair. It felt like defrosted poultry.

"Another one," I told Lisa. This was her first time delivering, and I wanted to instill in her an expectation of this sort of thing. She just looked right through me with a thousand mile stare. I turned to Mayme and sighed.

I never thought I'd end up a drug dealer again. Ever since legalization, the glamour - not to mention the money - had left the profession. The clientele had changed, too; now mostly senior citizens looking for pain relief or a way out. Coltrane played on softly in the background.

“That crow…,” Lisa whispered, “it flew right into the window.” She was still obviously a little shaken. “It must’ve been attracted to the shiny thing.”

“Yeah,” I said, “you’ll get a lot of that.”

Thanks for all the fishes!

Listening to: Monty Python - Always Look On the Bright Side of Life
via FoxyTunes