fr_defenestrato: (23)
Last night I watched God Said, "Ha!", which came in yesterday's mail disguised as a movie marathon DVD. Hadn't seen it since it were new. Julia Sweeney is not Spalding Gray, but her storytelling is mostly effective and the story she tells affecting.

Speaking of movies, on Tuesday night I watched Full Frontal, Steven Soderbergh's penance for Ocean's Eleven. Much of the script was improvised, and at one point a character, who's a theater director, is telling his lead actor (playing Hitler), 'I don't care what you do offstage. You can eat the ass out of a dead wolf for all I care.' Alarum. I watched again with Soderbergh's and the writer's (Coleman Hough) commentary, and the only thing either said about this line was that it was the only line that made Hough's mother laugh out loud. Hough didn't claim to have written it, and my impression was the whole scene was improv. So I head to my library and pluck from the shelf P.S. Your Cat Is Dead (James Kirkwood, 1970) and, sure enough, exactly as I remembered it, there's burglar Vito Antonucci tied to the kitchen counter, complaining, 'I'm so hungry I could eat the asshole out of a dead wolf.' I've never doubted that Kirkwood originated the phrase, but has anyone our there in LJland ever heard/read this phrase?

Speaking of the history of words and phrases, can I just tell you how much I hate the term ‘matrix’? In a generic sense, table, matrix, and array are all synonyms, but matrix has a broader structural meaning... table salt and jello are matrices, or in matrices. Your PC display is a matrix. But somewhere in the last decade or so the American officeplace started calling every bleeding ordered data array a MATRIX. Stupid fucking Wachowski brothers. Stupid fucking Keanu.

[Optional aside: the original meaning of 'matrix' in Latin was 'womb' or the carrier thereof... Speaking of wombs, Julia Sweeney discusses the removal of hers in God Said, "Ha!". But that would be all 0000 GOTO 0000 so... onward...]

Speaking of The Matrix, I swear to fucking Christ I will travel to Hollywood and cut into little tiny pieces the next screenwriter or director who puts out any movie in which any character is referred to as 'the one' foretold in prophecy.

Speaking of prophet-foretelling, I really want to see Jeebus Christ Superstar, even though it stars an 80-year-old Jeebus. Who wanna go wif me? It plays next Tuesday, 3/17 through Sunday 3/22.

Speaking of Christ, the Cheese Lords are singing a Tenebrae service on Wednesday, 20090408, at the Franciscan Monastery in NE DC. I mention this because, of all the church services that we used to sing, Tenebrae is the only one we've retained on an annual basis—because it's weird and dramatic and grim. It's all about the upcoming sacrifice of the only begotten blah blah fucking blah, and so the playlist is DARK: all lamentations and behold and see if there by any sorrow like unto my sorrow and stuff. Also, late in the service they outen all the lights in the church and everybody makes a fuckload of percussive noise, 'symbolizing the earthquake that followed Christ's death'.

Speaking of the end of Jeebus's life, it is now Day 16 of Lent and therefore Day 16 of my non-drinkiness. Cheese Lord rehearsal last night presented some temptations but all in all was manageable. I am a little more worried about going to Manahatta this Saturday for a party of the old Steve Wolownik/U. Penn Balalaika Orchestra gang, they with all the flavoured vodkas, etc. But I promised pierogi and I haven't seen these folk in several years, so... I go. Wish me luck and dryness.

Speaking of this weekend, I'm also planning to lunch with Mr. Greg 'Stop Calling Me the Mayan Houseboy' Orlando on Sunday: the first time I shall have seen him in about 13 years. His loathing for me (based on a shady house rental deal in 1994) seems to have abated somewhat. This is ancient history, but I once intensely loved this very odd man and cried a lot when he cut me out of his life. Greg's catch phrase back in the day in Newark, Del., was 'Donde estan mis zapatos?'

Speaking of shoes, Muntadhar al-Zeidi got sentenced to three years in prison for throwing shoes at one of history's most virulent and successful criminals against humanity. *Sigh.* Honestly, it was an act of simple assault, and should be punished under the law. But Zeidi's still a hero to me; I only wish he had thrown the anthrax shoes.

Speaking of accessories, [ profile] madknits knitted me a hat and sent it to me. It arrived in Tuesday's mail and I wore it briefly yesterday, even though the weather was quite warm. It is gorgeousness and gorgiocity. I need to DL some pics from my camera and then I shall show it off good'n'proper.

Speaking of pictures, at 8:30 tonight the motion picture Cool Hand Luke is playing at AFI Silver. You goin'?

Speaking of invitations to outings in the D.C. area, Crooked Still and Railroad Earth are playing the Birchmere next Thursday. Who like da bluegrass/roots music?

Speaking of bluegrass/roots music, I don't believe I've EVER told someone to turn music off because I found it 'painful' to listen to it.

Three men went a-hunting, and something they did find;
They came upon a porcupine, and that they left behind.
The Irishman said, "It's a porcupine," the Scotsman, he said, "Nay."
The Welshman said, "It's a pincushion with the pins stuck in the wrong way."
fr_defenestrato: (Naked Baby)
It was an interesting weekend. Friday night I left the office and headed straight to the Warner Theater, in whose box office I coted the lovely and talented [ profile] furmuslbulk and his BF, buying tickets for Sunday night's performance of Avenue Q. Rush tickets for Friday's performance were to be sold as of 6 p.m., so at 5:40 I took my place in a line of three (which quickly expanded). Bottom line: after shelling out $80 for a 19th row seat the night before, suddenly I had a third-row (orchestra right) aisle seat for a grand total of $30, no service charges or 'convenience' fees. Pow.too friggin' verbose, as usual )
fr_defenestrato: (easter)
Update since Wednesday: the Cheeselord Tenebrae service went off well despite Fr. Kevin's homily. hiding in the tenebrae )

Thursday, my boss invites me to the "pipeline review" meeting where everyone involved in sales at Splatcom runs down the data on all potential opportunities. omg boring work talk )

Last night took a couple buses in a row from my office to St. John's Catholic Church in Falls Church to sing, as a ringer, for the Good Friday service there. back to church )

Metroed home, hung out awhile, and back out to the Green Lantern, which has managed to curry a respectable underwear night on Fridays as well as Saturdays. requisite smut content )
fr_defenestrato: (saturnalia)
Hooray! I got 8 hours of nearly uninterrupted sleep last night! Crashed hard shortly before 9 and woke up at 5 a.m., completely BOING-don't-even-fit-in-the-bed-anymore awake. Started work about 5:30 and got the biggest baddest job on my to-do list done by 8, so I had no qualms about not leaving for the office until 9:15. Today we convene the Red Team review of the present proposal. I'm hoping any of the four people assigned to review it will have actually read it by 3 when we meet to debrief.

Meanwhile: hommos from Perfect Pita for lunch. Nom nom nom.

Tonight: the Suspicious Cheese Lords are singing a Tenebrae service at the Franciscan Monastery in D.C. As I've mentioned to several peoples, the Monastery fired us as artists-in-residence two years ago this spring, and since then (and partly because of that) we've been evolving into more a concert band than a church-service group—obviously to my extreme glee. We scurried that first year to make up the money (~$7K per annum) the Franciscans had given us to sing 6 services during Holy Week and various other holiday services throughout the year, and now that we're actually getting 5-figure offers from cathedrals and concert series far and wide we don't have to accept any old church service job that comes our way. But I've always had a soft spot for the monastery, which has one of the most gorgeous, sonorous, peaceful chapels I've ever been in... and so when the Franciscans asked us back for this Holy Week and the lords debated about it, I was happy that we decided to accept only once service, and that that service was Tenebrae. It's a mournful service, full of lamentations and whatnot, and toward the end of the service all the church lights go out and the altar candles are extinguished one by one, except for one that the priest picks up and walks out of the chapel, leaving the place in total darkness. While the lights are out the "strepitus" (Latin for "great noise") is sounded, symbolizing the "contraction of the earth in woe" following Jesus's crucifixion, or some such crap. (They have special noisemakers for this at the monastery.) Then the priest brings the candle back in, just like Jesus brought back the light of the world blah blah blah. Yeah, it's goofy and mythtical, but I like the darkness of it, and the drama. We sing nothing remotely happy. Yay!

Ooooh, in fact, one of the things we're singing tonight is explicitly about "the dying of the light" (but rages, rages not thereagainst): Moriens lux amantissima by Jean Mouton. We recorded this last summer but it didn't make it onto our new CD, which made me sad as it's my favorite thing of Mouton's that we sing. Anyway, y'all are welcome to come listen... at least it's free and you don't have to sit through TOO much churchiness.
fr_defenestrato: (brother voodoo)
Good lard: at the office until 11 p.m. yesterday working a proposal due two weeks from today. Caught my Fairfax Connector bus to West Falls Church, caught the last orange line train downtown, which meant I was certain to miss the last yellow/green trains north. So I exited at MacPheremone Square and walked three blocks to the Green Lantern for a nightcap. Four beers and two shots later I cab home, feed them katzen, pack my stuff for the weekend (Lord Pancakes Aren't Animals Are They is shortly coming here to the office to pick me up; hence we hie to Ohio for the wedding of Lord Dan the Obstreperously Intent on Connubial Bondage), check email and LJ, and head to bed for an extremely efficient four hours' sleep before I need to get up and out for an 8:30 mandatory meeting, which fuck you Erica.

So I go to reset my cell phone alarm to Ridiculously Early O'Clock, except my cell phone's not where it ought to be. Wait... no, it's not ANYWHERE it ought to be. Uh. Hmm. Head upstairs to Irv A and dial my number on [ profile] misterdarkness/[ profile] peregrin8's phone and run down the back stairs quickly to tiptoe through my apartment, ears up and microadjusting, listening for the buzz of my cell phone (because of course I never have the ringer on, ever). Nope. I try again. Nope. Ok: I left my phone in the cab. I email Lord Broccoli to advise him of my work number and address and that I've lost my phone. I email My Sunshine (My Only Sunshine), [ profile] maestro_live, that I've lost my cell phone. He emails back almost immediately that he's contacted the cabbie and the cabbie will drop it at his place. Whew. Leave it inside your outer gate, I tell him, and I'll pick it up on the way to the Metro in the morning.

I set the loudest and most annoying alarm clock in the work, ganked decades ago from Travelodge on Main Street, Newark, Delaware, where I was desk clerking, and go to bed for what is now maybe 2 hours 15 minutes' worth of sleep. Except oops. I wake up at 10 a.m. having missed the mandatory 8:30 meeting, but more importantly OH so close to being late already for the 11:30 meeting, in which, in essence, my entire job is being picked apart by an external quality assurance auditor.

Auditui meo!

Emergency mode: deodorant, mouthwash, put on a suit, tie in pocket; email boss: "Very sorry. I will be there by audit time. Long story"; shut down, unplug, pack computer; scram to Maestro's place, grab the phone, head to Metro, green line train sits in the tunnel between Shaw and Mt. Vernon for several minutes. At this point I WILL be late for the meeting. Get out at Archives and grab a cab, who drives me to Tysons and, because he doesn't take credit cards, stops at the Exxon near my office. The ATM gives me a process error. Nothing to do with my account. I am in hell. I am in hell. I am in hell. What I tell you three times is true.

Second try on the ATM and success. Cab drops me in front of my office. I uncoat, brush teeth, slime and ponytail hair, grab coffee— and someone has made double-coffee. So much coffee in the basket that it has overflowed and grounds are everywhere, in the carafe, on the burner, all around the machine. Fucker! What the fuck, fucker? I make new coffee with 4 minutes till my audit. Grab my shit, laptop, notepad, etc. Put on my tie. Head to conference room.


Auditor asks me question after question and I have reasonable answers to everything. He even tries to get me on an exception to our process (the prop I'm currently working on) where the Capture Plan was skipped due to time constraints. Says to me: "Maybe you should write that into your SOP..." I called up the SOP that he had "perused" (def. 2) and found precisely where I had already written the exception clause in.

I rock.

Another meeting now. Road trip soon.
fr_defenestrato: (SCL)
So last Wednesday at Cheese Lord rehearsal we had a guest for eating, drinking, and singing, a high tenor who sings in another group with one of our basses and who is interested in auditioning with SCL. After rehearsal, on his way out the door, he stopped and said to me, "By the way, I saw your Christmas concert this year, and I thought your piece was the best."

D'oh! That somebody in the audience actually responded to a piece I wrote, enough to tell me about it... that just makes me swoon.

Then last Saturday night I was standing around in my underwear at the bar upstairs at the Green Lantern—I had chosen my sole pair of Calvin Klein boxer-briefs for comfort, name recognition, and the easy access afforded by the button fly—when a handsome, white-haired but youthful man (maybe 50 years old) (and who was fully dressed) came up to me and said, "Hey, I just saw you guys in concert in Alexandria and I wanted to tell you how wonderful it was." A slight paraphrase, maybe, but that was the gist.

So, um. I wrote to my fellow Lords saying "Let's not get world-famous after all."

BTW, the new record is out, though it's not yet available on Graphic design by our excellent emeritus David McGaw by way of Hipgnosis / Pink Floyd circa Atom Heart Mother...:)
fr_defenestrato: (SCL)
This was a random blog entry on our last concert, in Cleveland... from
'Tonight I went to see The Suspicious Cheese Lords.

A dozen men in dark slacks and simple wine-hued shirts, entirely unassuming. And then they began to sing. They were singing in a local Cathedral, a vast space of stone and arch. I was a little bit late (I am good at that), and so spent the first few songs far in the back, out among the scattered, few or none to a pew. I am happy for this: it was good to hear their singing shaped by the far end of that space, less detail, more melding, distant in a way the songs they sung felt as their voices brought them back to us over centuries. Back there I also got to hear a breathless, bewondered "Oh, Wow" pulled from the lips of one of my neighbors as their recital of Miserere mei Deus by Senfl turned its corner into beauty.

During intermission, I got to move up... Up close, the sound was brighter, lighter, less mixed by the heights of the hard walls. Tones blended, lifted and fell. With eyes closed, the air could be imagined to shimmer with it, the granite arches filled again with Latin sung in ways that the place was built for, even if perhaps the builders themselves did not know it at the time. The music rang smoothly, seeped gently, fell to cadence and shone like light. It was tremendous. It was difficult to clap; we were in a church, after all. It was difficult to clap, too: it seemed a poor offering to give after the last of the notes dies away, lost in the rafters, each and every time. We did it anyway.

They were not done. "Congratulations," they said, "on surviving the Latin portion of the program." They then spun hymns in English, rich with close and careful harmony. What came to mind to describe it, sitting there, was the Shenandoah Valley. Not the actual one, but the one of memory and dreams, the one the way it was half a century before now (for any value of now). There, on that rumpled land on a summer's day, in some field or farm, with clouds lazy in the sky, the chirps and hum of bird and bug, and the sun slinging down light, the warm sweet light, shining in that moment when all hangs still...

It was like that.

That was the gift of a dozen men in wine-hued shirts this evening, in a bright stone church on a flinty winter night. If you get a chance to see them, I would recommend it.
fr_defenestrato: (brother voodoo)
I just did a weird and growed-up thing: I bought myself renter's insurance. A bit late, considering I've been living in my current apt. almost precisely a decade (March 1 is the anniversary). $148 per annum. Not bad.

I also paid for a Yahoo!-owned webspace to go with the domain I'm already paying for, So far nothing's there, but I'm in the process of transferring my entire photo site (hosted for years on, maintained by my former upstairs neighbor Mr. Feckless) to this space. It's not quite a superfluous site, even given my flickr presence, since the model shoots I've done are all watermarked and I haven't put most of them on flickr. Plus this Yahoo! space has design tools that may well lift the burden of making each new page (e.g., for movie marathons) by writing in html using Notepad.

Saw the eclipse last night: after Cheese Lord rehearsal a bunch of us bundled up and stood outside... We caught it just as the bottom right edge was starting to get a little light back on it... and while I'm sure I've looked at a total lunar eclipse in the past, it must have been my childhood and my memory is pretty much non-existent. So I was completely unprepared to have earth's moon actually look like a sphere hanging in the air. I'm sure I have never, ever seen the moon looking all 3-D like that.

Near future plans: dinner and bear night at Cobalt with Paul Friday... a lot of musical stuff this weekend I have to choose from... Dayton, Ohio next weekend to sing for the wedding of Lord Dan the Moribund Bachelor... and the weekend after, that off to San Francisco.

Even with my buying dinner tomorrow night I still kinda owe Paul a birthday present. I'm thinking Margaret Cho's upcoming show in April...

In other news, soon to be posted on the [ profile] groovy_garathon community, WE HAVE A LIST for Movie Marathon 45. Not a schedule yet, but a list. Hooray!
fr_defenestrato: (SCL)
So I have a weekend report to do for Gourmet Camping in Maine, and I have a Monday sonnet to do... but that'll have to be later. For now, Lord Peter just forwarded an email from the head server at the restaurant in Falls Church where, 8 days ago, the Suspicious Cheese Lords held their annual dinner and business meeting. Beyond that, it's pretty self-explanatory.

This letter made me cry. Just a little, but still.


I felt compelled to write to you, because in the days since I made your acquaintance, the impression that you left upon me has lingered... I left the restaurant that evening with a smile on my face because of you...

What I would most like to thank you for was the piece that you sang for me in the midst of your meeting. I felt absolutely lifted; your voices wrapped around me and I felt so fortunate to be in the presence of such a gifted group of people. I am certain that many are touched by your music, and that evening, my soul was stirred—I could not possibly go without thanking you for that...

I genuinely thank you, and wish you the continued satisfaction and joy that only the pursuit of a true passion can provide.
fr_defenestrato: (Default)
SO! The new Westell modem I ordered from Verizon arrived practically instantaneously. The old one was seriously fucked: with increasing frequency, it would just stop transmitting in either direction for 20, 30, 45 seconds at a time. I called V. on Thursday and the new modem was waiting for me when I got home Friday night. Set it up, ran install, had Internet in <5 minutes. Incredible. Almost makes me want to take back one mildly nasty thing I've said about Verizon. But not quite.

Also Friday night I Metroed from work to Montgomery Mall to buy a new canister vacuum cleaner at Sears. It's purdy. And it works, which is quite a step up from my old canister vacuum cleaner.

The Cheese Lord concert went well Saturday night and on and on and on... )
fr_defenestrato: (Default)
perhaps because i'm flying to Chicago tonight, my sleep last night was brief... 11:30 to 3:30 and BOING, wide awake. it didn't help that it occurred to me i had not yet written a sonnet this week, and then it occurred to me that i should try some additional constraint besides rhyme scheme and meter. i'm a freakin' freak.

the Cheese Lord concert on Sunday was really pretty terrific. Read more... )

now it's proposal time, of course, and my chicago trip is already et into: tomorrow morning i have to facilitate a review of the proposal first draft by conference call. Read more... )

them as knows me long time know i'm going to chicago for the Grabby (Gay Porno) Awards and the International Mr. Leather convention and competition. Read more... )

so i packed last night and cleaned up the house a bit.

complicating matters is the fact that my three maintenance prescriptions—two for Hep B and one for hypertension—run out tomorrow, and I let them go too long before starting the process for getting refills via pharmacy-by-mail. Read more... )

hmmm, this hasn't been terribly random... how's this: there's a new mole on my face. Read more... )

what else? there are always houseflies in my bathroom. Read more... )

i finally have an iPod. Read more... )

guess that's about it for now... i'm taking my sweet, tiny little laptop (courtesy of a random Worst Buy employee, to the chagrin of Worst Buy corporate) with me to Chicago so i may be posting somewhat throughout the weekend. wish me fuck.
fr_defenestrato: (SCL)
Short version: Camping was great; Cheese Lord concert was very good; I am tired.

Long version: Grabbed my rental car at Reagan Thursday night, loaded up back at the Irv, and drove without stopping to Blue Rocks Family Campground in Lenhartsville, Pa. Arrived minutes after 1 a.m. and called Joe who, with Hugh, drove down from the campsite to fetch me and my stuff. Stayed up talking to Joe and Hugh and Rob Lynch (new to me) and they crashed one by one until Joe and I turned in circa 2:30. Joe's pop-up camper is really pretty nice... sleeps three comfortably.
Read more... )
fr_defenestrato: (Default)
I'm about to leave work after a 4-day week, head to Washington National Airport (renamed after a national airhead), rent a small weehicle, stop home for stuffs, and drive to scenic Lenhartsville, Pa. for 3(ish) days of camping with some of the folks from Camp Catatonia (from the Philly Folk Fest) and some of they friends. I sha'n't be Web-enabled during this time. Unless somebody new shows up, I am the token fag of the bunch. This is fine; the guys are totally cool. For sleeping arrangements, last time I shared a really spacious tent with Joe and Bill, but this time Bill cannae make it and Joe says there's no point in pitching a tent because he just bought a pop-up camper, which has room for the two of us. So, yes, I just can't stop giggling telling people that Joe is sharing his pop-up with me.

This is a straight, married guy who, since the year we met at folkfest, has professed a remarkably level of affection for me. His public persona is lewd and lascivious at almost all times, and that extended without any visible effort to flirting with me. (Still, despite sharing sleeping quarters and a penchant for hard liquor, we have thus far behaved as gentlemen.)

Last time camping with these guys it was Bill's bachelor party, and the bunch of us went to a straight strip club. I got about as drunk as I ever get on Oban single malt Scotch—so drunk that [ profile] bxiie got into first-responder mode dealing with me (which was actually quite wonderful to witness/participate in... he's really good at what he does, even though he must have been at least 2/3rds crocked his own bad sef).

I gonna hafta split camp late Sunday morning to get back to DC for the Cheese Lord concert at 5 p.m. Probably need to return the car before the show... Depending on the shenanigans the night before, this could get ugly... Anyway, I'm off. Wish me luck. Well, wish that I shall have had luck by the time I catch up here.
fr_defenestrato: (SCL)
For them as is in the DC area, the Suspicious Cheese Lords will be concerting this Sunday at 5 p.m. at the Church of the Annunciation at 3810 Massachusetts Ave NW (just west of Wisconsin). It's our last DC concert of the season and the repertoire is particularly nice: five (I think) pieces by Jean Mouton—some of his previously unrecorded works that we'll be putting on CD this summer—plus three pieces by Genet off'n our first record and some purdy stuff by Lassus, Rachmaninoff, Morton Lauridson (a live white guy as opposed to all the dead white guys), and other folks ain't nobody ever heard of. Nothing original this concert, alas. I think it's a free concert, but I don't really know (often the church will put out a "donation requested" kinda sign, so if in doubt, look homeless). Hope some LJ types can make it!
fr_defenestrato: (Default)
This weekend in brief but not in briefs:

Bailed on a previously agreed-to Baltimore excursion Friday night Read more... ) then headed out with maestro and Fabian to the Green Lantern for underwear night Read more... ) I stepped down heavily onto the concrete—and onto a 200-year-old rusty nail that seems to have been sticking straight upRead more... ) Tetanus is fatal in 11 percent of all casesRead more... )


fr_defenestrato: (Default)

February 2015

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