Sunday, December 20, 2009

Year in Review

liked You The Living - Sometime in the first five minutes, in an otherwise miserable scene of a fat biker woman moaning and crying to her lover on a park bench, a tuba starts to play an upbeat march or something and the woman breaks into a song about wanting a motorcycle. Like a motorcycle will make all of the difference in the world. A man emerges unexpectedly from behind a tree with no dramatic purpose. "Nobody understands me," she wails, to the camera. Roy Anderson is like 70 years old, and his earlier films aren't that good. I saw some of them at the MOMA before I lost my student ID. I remember a scene where a guy does the table cloth trick drawing such sustained giddy laughter that I was embarrassed for my fiance. Also, this morning, reading the comments ("I cried") on this youtube video of the most exuberant scene in the film while listening to the music from it made me cry a little; Frownland - I think this film does a good job of being extremely negative and satirical about the experience of 'artistic' / 'bohemian' New York at the end of the Bush years. I am glad somebody did that. It's also very encouraging and humorous; 1980 - 1995 Lou Reed - I've especially enjoyed the Blue Mask for it's sentimentality. Songs for Drella is interesting, is about Andy Warhol. "Sword of Damocles" might be my favorite Lou Reed song; Chances with Wolves - I used to look forward to reading end of the year lists. Things have changed so much. When I lost my last ipod I didn't even care. Anyways, I found this radio show through my friend at work, and I love it. It makes me feel connected to the city, it's history and music. It reminds me that there are millions of songs in the world; Zachary German's music video for Feist - There is something uncanny and sinister going on between the swimming fish photobooth effect and this song, and Zachary's voice-over and blue-lit shirtless torso seems to flatten it. bpoty Do It With Joy - This is not a 'masterpeice' or something. When I found out about it and got a copy I was really worried it would be terrible, but it's not that either. It's people who were in a similar situation I am in thirty years before I got into it. Gave me the same kind of satisfaction that Chances With Wolves gave me - made me feel connected to humanity. Seems like a victory for me, and for the film. I wonder if the filmmaker is mad that I illegally uploaded it, even though I am its main (only?) champion.didnotlike Antichrist - there is a sweet slow-mo penetration shot at the beginning, then a lot of uncomfortable violence at the end; Ian Svenonius on documentaries at Vice Magazine - just seemed really bad, "painting with the big brush" type stuff; N + 1 "hipster lecture" thing - DJ rupture, looking bookish and nervous, talking about hipsters in Lima Peru, making a point about cultural transference, takes a moment to flatter the crowd, which looks like it is probably 95% people who are over 25 and live in dorm rooms, saying, of the Lima hipsters, "of course they're not as cool as you guys"

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Guy Lacelle, wise old man tree planter and tertiary subject of Franz Otto Ultimate Highballer, died in an ice climbing accident on the tenth. The news made me very sad. I put together a sort of Eulogy video for anyone interested.

Still looking for an editor...

Saw Antichrist...

Monday, December 7, 2009

On Franz Otto Ultimate Highballer's facebook page you can view a short version of "Do It With Joy". Become a fan if you want to see it. There are 80 83 fans so far.

It's my birthday on the 15th. Gonna be 27. Here is a blog post about Chad's hair that I liked.

Monday, November 23, 2009

I've started to review places on google reviews (what is foursquare? is it bad?). Tumblr has been activated. Ireadnytimes is being updated.

Been working some. I'm switching to 2 days per week to try to figure out what to do with "franz otto ultimate highballer"; considering releasing it as a vimeo account, editing to that kind of format or something.

I'm considering producing a copy of the MEC rad pant. MEC discontinued it. It is very popular with tree planters (esp. me). With good marketing this kind of pant could represent our changing values as people / a culture: it is lightweight, inexpensive, and quick drying (could play into ideas of an ecological collapse scenario). I believe people are looking for a way out of the current denim-centric pants paradigm. Lauren says she can make a pattern for me. Not really sure what that means. What do you guys think?

Lauren and I are going to make some olympics t-shirts soon. Going to Las Vegas for thanksgiving. Shoutout to Jody Rogac .

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Freemans Restaurant

Also available on google reviews.

I went here with my fiance; we were meeting my brother and his girl, who were visiting from out of town.
They were late, so we stood at the bar for a long time checking things out. I ordered the cheapest beer on the menu - a 'lowenbrau'. I said something to my fiance like 'do you think they make lowenbrau the cheapest to make you feel bad when you order it?' which seemed funnier then than it does now. It was $5.
There was a guy and a girl sitting at a table and looking at eachother, eating a desert with their heads very close together. The guy appeared to be in the band the virgins - or maybe just wearing the kind of outfit that would befit someone's idea of the virgins - and the girl was kinda hot with a grumpy / rich vibe.
The other people were expensively garmented and international. The decor was 'rustic' or something; like the kind of place people would picture bon iver chilling ~ 2008. Very 'of the moment' (or, perhaps, 'of the moment directly before 'the moment''?)
The food was okay, and we spent around $50 each. The total was $200. When I got home I got a double text message from my brother saying 'Thanks to Lauren for coming. Thanks for your couch last few days.Otherwise bro, that was my birthday dinner... I think you forgot. I know I'm sensitive but whatever. Later.'

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

this post is for people visiting via

Hey Guys. Here are some things I have written regarding planting or being a planter. I also strongly encourage you to follow me on twitter and on tumblr.

Also, you guys should become a fan of Franz Otto Ultimate Highballer on facebook.

1. Blog of Two Seasons Planting
"my favorite blog ever" - a planter
-there was a lot of drama the first year including a stasher witch hunt + me being fired (almost twice)
(best of: the yossef stashing saga 1, 2, 3, 4 ; love story ; my crew ; cam's greed crew ; someone else gets fired)

2. Do It With Joy Review
-budget-ass documentary film made in 1976 about Dirk Brinkman + his camp
-I think I am going to try to get the filmmaker to let me upload it
*Update: Do It With Joy has been uploaded, to view the film become a fan of Franz Otto Ultimate HIghballer on facebook...

3. Summarization of Article on Planters from "Forestalk" magazine, 1984
-what I learned re: the genesis of the labor force

4. Sarah Anne Johnson
-"the only incidence of representation of 'tree planting' in a high art, sophisticated, international context" (link)

Sunday, November 1, 2009

cried in time warner cheer zone
The cheers and the music are what got my attention and drew me to the time warner cheer zone. Then I saw the people lined up against a police barricade. The runners seemed happy, proud; like they could express their personalities and vanities in this particular public setting without fear or shame.

One guy was running with a 6 foot tall model of the Eiffel tower strapped over his shoulders. Beside me a woman was screaming wooooo and holding a sign that said "go runners".

Just "go runners". All runners.

Her enthusiasm was so broad.

My throat started to swell, just taking it all in there, pushing my bike through the crowd. I had to go down into the subway station to cross the street.

I want a fender telecaster
a modest / neutral electric guitar
Cass McCombs and Jonny Greenwood both play a tele
Jonny's is probably tricked out
I might put some humbuckers on mine

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


Can't wait for this to come out...

Monday, October 5, 2009


Shopgirl is a 130 page novel written by Steve Martin, the actor.

It follows a 28 year old 'girl' (Mirabelle) working retail (for Neiman Marcus: an LA luxury department store) as she navigates sexual and emotional relationships with one young man (Jeremy) and another older man (Ray); both (the relationships) complicated by a shallow, hot, 32 year old co-worker (Lisa), a complicated family situation (parental affair + Dad was in Nam), and clinical depression.

The other day I saw Mike Myers in the Dean and Deluca in Soho, near the store I have been working in, selling clothes. I think before I read Shopgirls I liked Mike Myers more than Steve Martin, but that is probably because he is Canadian. Also I read about him carrying a hockey stick around for no reason, in New York, and I liked that.

Shopgirls complicates and makes more sophisticated Steve Martin's persona, for me. Evidently, he sees himself as more than a 'silly comedy guy'.

A note on the style: Shopgirls is narrated from an omniscient perspective, with the narrator often having greater access to the characters' motives, beliefs and personalities than they (the characters) are aware of. This seems creepy - like if this story was at all autobiographical (which it probably is) then Steve Martin has a condescending attitude towards the people in his life.

Analysis: Shopgirls is okay. I thought about Steve Martin quite a bit. I was hoping there would be more stuff about working in a store.

Monday, September 28, 2009


Milestones is a 3hr 30 minute long docu-drama about a network of 60's radicals in 1975. The radicals are all friends of the filmmaker, I think. They are approaching middle age, and are still invested in "political struggle" and "alternative lifestyles" ("counterculture"), but seem increasingly aware of being marginal / inconsequential. I enjoyed the film, especially the more fucked-seeming characters.

I felt comparatively far less fucked.

The DVD was regionally encoded for France, so I had to watch it on my computer. The sound was so bad in parts that I could not determine what was being said. The picture likewise, was extremely shitty. I watched the whole thing in one evening, in two sittings, after dragging my couch over to my desk to make it more comfortable. During part of the film I was reading about Robert Kramer on his website. Robert Kramer died in 1999. I doubt he ever made much money from his work; I doubt he will ever reach a broad audience. His story seems as much a part of the viewing experience as anything happening onscreen. He is / was, as his characters are, totally committed to his lifestyle and cause, and totally fucked, career-wise.

I had heard about the birth scene from Milestones from my friend beforehand, so I was sort of expecting it to happen and vaguely dreading it. At around the three hour mark the pregnant character goes into the hospital and there is some dispute over which kind of room she is going to get, the expensive one or the cheap one. There is a very long build up to the actual birth, with shots of them soaping up the pregnant woman and her breathing. I was growing anxious and a little bit uncomfortable, and considered skipping ahead. I stuck through it though. After the baby came out everybody in the room kind of broke into celebration. My eyes were watering. It was an amazing feeling that I had never felt before while watching a movie; probably the same feeling people try to describe after they have seen their loved ones give birth - the 'miracle of life' feeling.

I would recommend Milestones to grad students, political activists, underground artists and writers, and anybody who has held an ideology that is irreconcilable with participation in economically generative activities.

If you are interested in Milestones, email me your address and I can mail you a French region burned DVD.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Sarah Anne Johnson

Sarah Anne Johnson was a Yale photography grad student at around the time, I think, that Yale's photography school was 'incredibly well regarded.' Not that Yale is no longer strong, but I feel like there was a photography thing that was happening in the art world around that time that was very Yale-driven.

*I don't feel qualified to talk about photography*

Seems like there was a Jeff Wall type thing going on, a "constructed," "photographs are like paintings" thing, and then a Wolfgang Tillmans thing, which was something else, a messier thing, not as concerned with what is inside the frame and how to manipulate that.

I think Sarah bridged those two things, the Jeff Wall thing and the Wolfgang Tillmans thing, in a way, with her Yale thesis project. She built dioramas of situations she recalled from her experiences as a tree planter in Northern Manitoba and mixed them with actual documentary style photos from planting. The show was hung in a less traditional manner, with some photos bigger than others, and some on top of the others.

The show received a positive review from the New York Times. Later the photographs were purchased by the Guggenheim.

This success, to my mind, is the only occurrence of representation of 'tree planting' in a high art, sophisticated, international context.


Sarah's success and her story allow me to think about the interpretation of 'tree planting'; how the art world responded to 'tree planting'.

I feel like one of the primary concerns of my film will be "finding a marketable film," or "finding a marketable way of representing 'tree planting' to people who do not know anything about tree planting."


I recently went to Sarah's new show with my camera. It had been listed on Jerry Saltz's "fall shows he is looking forward to" list, and I figured I would go there and try to talk to Sarah and her gallerist about tree planting.

I think things are really coming together for the film. I am continually pushing myself into situations that make me incredibly uncomfortable, and it feels really good.

I will be travelling to Vancouver, Prince George and Oregon in October.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics T-Shirt

I am in New York, working part time at the Rag and Bone Store in Soho (119 Mercer).

I reviewed "Relapse" by Eminem at Kathy's blog.

I started a news-focused youtube channel.

Also, I designed a "post-ironic" shirt for the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, BC. Seems like I could sell a lot of these, but I'm not sure about copyright, and not sure I want to do the work. Might be just fucking around. Please contact if you are in Vancouver and want to get involved:

This shirt was inspired by the feeling of getting uncomfortably stoned and doing an extreme maneuver at night time. - Adam Humphreys

Charlotte Gill, award winning writer, tree planter.

Sarah Anne Johnson
, award winning artist, ex (?) tree planter.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Do It With Joy

Do it With Joy, made in 1976, is a film about tree planting.

The subjects / planters are 'colorful' and 'interesting'- people pursuing an alternative lifestyle and who have, in the narrator's words, "found a new solution to work."

I have watched the film enough times to be familiar with all of the people in the camp. They seem pretty cool. I would like to hang-out with any of these people, even today. I think we have shared a meaningful formative experience that we could talk about.

In the documentary, they talk, sit around, eat, cook, joke, flirt, play the guitar, plant trees, 'screw around,' push trucks out of mud, and complain a little bit.

There is a scene where they organize a soccer game against a nearby Nisga'a tribe and are beaten 15-0.

My favorite scene is when they build a sweat lodge out of a plastic tarp and everybody climbs in there all naked. Then they run out of the sweat lodge and jump off of a dock into the water. I feel like that scene captures something of the beauty, and freedom of 'the experience,' in a way that makes me think of Ryan McGinley photographs.

The cook is a mime, and walks tightrope.

A musician talks about living a schizophrenic life, being an artist in the city and leaving the city for the bush for three months at a time.

The assistant cook, and cutest girl in camp, talks about planting dreams and then says flattering things to the camera about Dirk Brinkman. In the special features menu of the DVD we learn that she marries Dirk, and becomes a politician. I thought this was interesting because it seems like in most camps I have been in the cutest girl 'gets with' the highest available authority figure. It's darwinistic like that.

The "crew" was two people (shown in picture, smoking, on the inside of the DVD case). They shoot on 16mm, and sometimes it looks shitty because of solar flares, water on the lens, or them using the end of the reel as it spools out, but these 'touches' I feel, do nothing to detract from the overall portrait.

The 30 up section on the special features is 'of particular interest' to me. Somebody finds all of the characters 30 years later and sees how they are doing. Most of them seem okay, or still struggling with whatever they've been struggling with all along. One woman kind of loses it. Another guy gets a little weird. The musician ends up in a successful band making some money. A bunch of planting couples are still together, including Dirk and Joyce Murrray (MLA).

It made me feel good about being a planter. I think it enabled me to see myself from further outside of myself, in a way, and helped me to understand my current career anxiety within a larger context - an entire history of people who did this job. I felt better, in a way, more resigned.

I am surprised it is not more widely known in the planting world. Seems like it should be more of a classic.

*I have uploaded "Do It With Joy" (shorter version) to Franz Otto Ultimate Highballer's facebook page, please become a fan to view

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Dirk Brinkman

1. Dirk Brinkman owns the biggest planting company in Canada. Brinkman and Associates Reforestation.

2. Dirk Brinkman was one of the original private contractors to 'let' work from the ministry of forests.

3. Dirk Brinkman started planting in 1970, and was probably one of the first vagabond / hippie planters, but also a great leader / managerial type.

4. Dirk Brinkman is partly responsible for the design of the modern tree planting bag.

5. Dirk Brinkman experimented with labor organization, and is part-author of the way tree planting is currently practiced. The contemporary system of peice work, remote worksites, and people getting their own peices of land (as opposed to planting in lines) is based upon his experiences.

6. Dirk Brinkman could be considered "The Architect" of the "Highballer Era."

I met him for lunch on Burrard street Cactus club to talk about my Franz Otto Film. He ordered a salad and there was prosciutto in the bottom, so he sent it back, saying he did not eat meat. He told me he was on break from meeting lawyers, discussing a settlement for a native tribe. His current work is global and political - he is negotiating or inventing standards for a carbon offset market in reforestation across the world. This means making sure that the carbon offsets that are sold are 'actually' helping the environment.

I was very impressed with Dirk Brinkman.

He sold me this film (clip shown in video above at, a doc about a planting crew produced in 1976 by Orca Productions. Do it With Joy.

It was made by this guy, Nicholas Kendall. I will blog about Do it With Joy more later.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

History of Tree Planting Labor Force

I found this when I was doing some research today.

Lots of them were still using Polaski like things. This was just when the D-Handle revolution was beginning.

I am a planter and have planted 4 years - through college, through an MA, and through moving to New York. I am making a film about Franz Otto, the legendary tree planter.

They Interview a guy named Pete Robson who had worked in reforestation since 1964. Are these Fitness babes?

haha above "flatulence reforestation."

"On the first planting projects I was involved in we used inmate labor, After that we hired whomever we could. we hired locals, hired off the reserves, got men off of Main and Hastings in Vancouver. We paid by the hour and few had much interest or much skill in it. Needless to say our production was low."

"By 1967 we decided to try letting a contract. We were not impressed with the results of the first one, but the next year we let a contract to two hippies - complete with beflowered volkswagen van. They camped under plastic and planted faster than we had ever seen."

'These two hippies were to revolutionize tree planting in the province.'

'They let the way for a new breed of planters, people pursuing what was once called "alternative lifestyles."'

'One big time contractor has a degree in religion. Another is a dropout nuclear energy engineer from the atomic energy commission of Canada. There are homesteaders. teachers, artists, craftspeople, lots of carpenters, and at least one potato farmer. '

'Tony Berniaz, mountaineer, world traveller and now gentleman farmer, has probably planted a million trees; he used to be a PhD chemist.'

'Holly Arntzen, a Vancouver musician, liked to wake up camp every morning with the golden sounds of Handel and Vivaldi played on her French Horn.'

'Clay Perry, legislative director of the IWA in Vancouver explains, "Because of the strategic importance of silviculture to the future of the industry, it has to [should] be organized in a rational way and give people a rational lifestyle. It is just not rational for BC to rely on 'counterculture' people for such important strategic work."'

'Dirk Brinkman, founder Brinkman reforestation, responds: "not only is it a logistical necessity to use tent camps and to move all over BC and Alberta doing short term contracts in remote places, it's also a part of our lifestyle."'

Article ends with planters finishing up a contract and drinking beer.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


just found out about Alec Soth's photo series Niagra

Shots of architecture and people in Niagara Falls. Lots of couples, whose honeymoon budgets probably do not allow them to get very far from home (bummer) but who are trying anyways (sweet).

Interspersed are images of handwritten letters: most of the grammar is bad. Some of the letters are romantic, love letters, and some are angry.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

'I am going to rent a truck today and go way out into the bush to find another older planter named Guy who sleeps on the block and climb's ice in competition.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

First day with Franz

I have met Franz Otto and crew.

Shot some footage of him planting. He is a great planter.

A lot of things happened.

Tomorrow I am going to try to meet Guy LaSalle on the cut block where he is sleeping.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Virtual Clearcut is interesting.
The tone, I would say, is aggressive.

Here is a picture (I love) from the Bowron clearcut (1990). Biggest clear cut ever - visible from space. Jumping off point (kind of) for the book.


I shot some stuff of a guy names Uwe who worked at the nursery. He was like 50 and had a dog named lady. He toured me around the places where they grew the trees. I kept aking him questions and he would answer them and start walking away as I finished. I could tell he was uncomfortable to be on the camera. Not sure if it is usable.

Bought this book at the PG bookstore.

Meeting Franz tonight.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Driving to Quesnel to meet Franz

Matt Bock, my foreman who lives in Prince George, has agreed to lend me his 92 Toyoto Previa to drive up to Quesnel today, where I plan to Meet Franz for the first time, provided I will have the van in Prince George by Monday.

This saves me around 150$ in rental fees (I had a a truck booked with enterprise).

I am a little bit nervous to meet Franz - mostly nervous that he will not be likeable or will wear awful t-shirts or something like that. Worried that he will not be interesting at all.

I don't know where I am going with any of this, and I plan on telling him as much. I am drawn to his legend. That he has done pretty much all there is to do in this little world we have, and has achieved the highest stature of any tree planter.

Still, he is effected by decisions made by morons in cities who have never even stepped on cut blocks, thus 'in the bigger context,' he is a small fish. I am interested in his motivations, his will, his work ethic, his story; but I don't know if there will be a good film.

This is kind of a journey form, a quest thing, but I don't want the film to be "here I am Mr. Filmmaker on his quest to meet the legend."

I like POV films when they are not about the filmmaker him/herself.

I shot some stuff of Fred and Cass (who are on my crew) on the last shift there. Fred hurt his neck trying to jerk his head away from some mosquitoes and Cass was throwing up in her land. I found them at the cache. Fred was holding his head all weird and walking in circles and Cass was laying down under the tarp. It was pretty funny / usable.

I want to come back for burn season and shoot Cam Stewart burning slash piles. Those images would have an epic, gulf war kind of vibe.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009


1. I have been filming very little. I find it difficult to 'plant lots of trees to earn money for the film' and 'film other people planting trees' simultaneously.

2. I have 8 more days of planting.

3. My wide angle lens adapter arrived and looks good.

4. On the 19th I will travel to Quesnel to meet Franz Otto, legendary tree planter. I will shoot him for three days, probably just planting trees.

5. I have planned out shots.

6. Should I buy wireless lavalier mics?

7. If this doesn't 'work out' or 'amount to anything' how depressing will the gear look on my floor in a corner of our little apartment in New York when I walk out the door to my retail job?

Sunday, May 17, 2009

I spoke to Franz Otto on the telephone

learned some things about him, like he has four children, still plants and supervises, sometimes takes his daughters out to plant with him (they are in elementary school), loves tree planting, etc.

I am going to visit him and shoot footage of him planting trees.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

I thought I would be able to whip out my camera and shoot at odd moments

And the film would reflect a lack of planning, a spontaneity.

But if I carry my camera all of the time I run a high risk of fucking it up. So I am afraid to have it all the time.

Moreover, if I schedule things, and shoot them, I am shirking my responsibilities as a planter. My boss will not be happy.

Is this doomed?

I don't know. I think it will have to change. I am now thinking a lot about Franz Otto.

I thought it could be like participatory observation documentary, but that would require an even smaller camera - a coolpix or something.

Hoping to interview Patrick (aka. "Cheese") the other crew boss at some point today to ask him about Franz, etc. Hoping to explore wow planters give meaning to their work and lives. Planters being people who don't quite cut it in "society," maybe. Think that is interesting.

Cheese is funny, besides.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Franz Otto: "Yes, the legend is true"

I want to find Franz Otto so i can make a short about him in the spirit of Werner Herzog's films. Here is the only photo I can find of Franz.

He seems like "the guy" as far as tree planting goes. There are german people beside me. I am at a small cafe in 100 Mile House called the Chartreuse Moose.

Read about Franz

Posted on this message board looking for Franz.

Things I've Shot So far

1:30 interiors of a small plane
2:00 interiors and exteriors of a run down motel room (where I am staying)
35:00 a safety meeting where my boss talked about bears, injuries, other stuff
15:00 the owner of the motel talking about his life, how he hates tree planters, how he is moving to asia, while standing in front of and stoking a small fire behind the motel

I guess I am shooting "24P" because it just kinda happened

Saturday, May 2, 2009

I saw Hunger and thought it was __________

Originally I thought it would be enough to shoot a bunch of scenes of planting out of order, snippets, like Paul Chan's videos "Baghdad in No Particular Order," and "Now Promise Now Threat." These scenes would look a lot like the stuff on my viddyou page. The idea was that it would accomplish the following within the narrative:

1. Expose the process whereby the money for the film was earned by showing the filmmaker embedded in a work environment.

2. Provide new images to people who have no idea what tree planting is and who might be interested

3. Lull people a little bit into the rhythyms of work, underscoring themes of work, how watching a film can be thought of as work

I particularly like work that addresses the conditions of its own existence, or the process of it's own creation - I like BARR or Andrew Kuo.

I couldn't buy a camera without going planting, and that seemed a good starting point for a film in my head.

Now I am thinking that there should be a loose momentum to the planting parts. Instead of trying to capture a "reality" I would stage a "realistic" narrative.

I have ideas for scenes that would not require too much from the actors - but I am not sure of the willingness of my collaborators. I suppose time will tell. The finished film still seems out of focus to me.

This is both good and bad.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Bought a Camera

Went and saw the Z7U and thought it was huge. Way too big.

I bought a new HVR V1U with a wide angle lens and a rain poncho thing. Cost me 4200.

Feel kinda good about it. It is smaller, which i think is good, but will still produce nice videos, I think.


Monday, April 27, 2009

I am going to try to make a film.
Here is the blog.
Here is the idea

In Vancouver Now

Flew back to Vancouver last night.

Going to look at this Camera tomorrow. Via Craigslist ad. Asking 4500 for it new. I am going to offer 4K.

People are talking about swine flu. If some really bad shit ever actually comes I probably won't even believe in it until "it's too late."

Friday, April 24, 2009

Going to See a Camera Tonight

Looking for something used on craigslist that takes DV tapes. Needs to be small and portable.

I have thoughts about people who try to make HDV look like 35mm film...

UPDATE: Did not go see camera. Went for a beer in the daytime at Sweet and Vicious. Talked to one of the guys in Ryan McGinley photos. Went to New Museum to see Younger Than Jesus show. Had sushi and beers. Kind of "blew off" the camera thing.

Wrote Jill Godmilow

Sent her some ideas / a manifesto type thing.

I am hoping she will write back to me and tell me if I am misguided or if I am being stupid.

Monday, April 20, 2009

"Cat Gets Out"

Long Anticipated New Short Film Project
Starring Lauren Bucquet as "The Black Haired Kitty Wrangler"
"My Cat"

Directed By
Adam Humphreys
Runtime :45
Format: Mpeg4

Press inquiries:

Saturday, April 18, 2009


Friday, April 10, 2009

Andrew Kuo Interview

Andrew Kuo is an artist with a show up, 'I'm Dying over Here,' at Taxter & Spengemann
123 East 12th Street
New York, NY, 10003
Tues - Sat 11-6

picture via image search

FMS: Your blog is called Emo + Beer = Busted Career. Do you still consider your ‘career’ ‘busted’ and if so, do you think it is reparable?

AK: I feel like there is no such thing as a "career". You are only as good or identifiable as what you're doing at the moment. So that title has more than a few problems with it. Sometimes I feel busted and sometimes I don't.

FMS: I went to your show and it took me about a half hour to get through everything, all of the graphs, which was longer than I’ve ever spent in a gallery by myself.
Do you read a lot, or watch TV mostly?

AK: I don't read that much outside of restaurant reviews or fantasy sports columns these days. My TV is always on. I would take a bullet for that thing.

FMS: Do you want to explore depression and negativity, or is it just ‘what comes out?’

AK: It just comes out, man. I must have the best friends in the world cause they put up with all of this all the time. When you make things you always manipulate them. I did it all on purpose. I hesitate at the word "negative." I tried to make a show that had a strong sense of hope in it. Maybe I blew it?

FMS: I don’t know. I wasn’t bummed at the show at all. I was mostly concentrating, decoding. Rodney Dangerfield’s quote as the title for the show suggests you are like, 'performing' and having a hard time keeping a good face on. Is that how you feel?

AK: Both? Who doesn't have a hard time keeping a good face on? Have you seen the papers?


FMS: Are you writing/have you written a book?

AK: I would really love to. My parents always wished I went that way. In college I would write short stories and send them of to literary journals and such (to no response). That was before the interweb, which is either the best thing to have happened in my life or worst (literarily). I write lengthy e-mails to my friends every Monday as reminders for a weekly party I throw. They get really personal and weird. That's the "writing" I do now.

FMS: At what point did you start turning graphs into a tool for music criticism?

AK: Maybe 3 years ago. 4?

FMS: Writers complain about reviewing books. Say that reviewing a book is somehow ‘beneath’ the writer, maybe, is seen as more ‘commercial’ than artistic – sometimes even seen as the antithesis of creativity.
Do you take your role as a critic seriously and do you think it conflicts with being an artist?

AK: I think I take criticism seriously, but if someone tells you a slice of pizza isn't good, do you believe him/her? "I'll be the judge of that!"

FMS: I might not buy the pizza.

AK: I think everyone should have opinions about things. My biggest complaint about humans is when they feel nothing. If you like art, you think about it and skip nude self-portraits. If you're a chef, macaroni and cheese should move you. They don't say "Everyone's a critic" because it's not true, right?

FMS: I have noticed you are posting less graphs on your blog. Are you bored of your NYTimes music graphs? Do you consider the NYTimes music stuff, like, a meal ticket? Do you ever feel like you’re ‘half-assing’ them?

AK: Dude I am/was swamped! I literally got cold sweats thinking about all the things I had to finish. But I gotta step my game up for sure. Thanks for reminding me! I try not to half-ass anything though. I try hard. (Can you tell?)

FMS: (Mostly yes)


FMS: You seem to like order. Like you are right brain dominant. Have you ever thought about it that way?

AK: Except you should see my apartment. What a mess! I like controlling things that I can control these days. Usually on flat surfaces no bigger than something i can carry with my two hands. I don't see splatter paintings in my future. Or maybe I do! These things look clean and orderly and maybe they are, but I can't wear a clean shirt to save my life.

FMS: I think you posted a picture of Dash Snow under the heading ‘Geico Man,’ a little while ago. Are you guys bros? I think of him as having a mystique. And you seem to want to demystify yourself, lay yourself bare...

AK: That's not Dash, that's my friend Jason Nocito. He takes photos and sometimes will take a polaroid of Shaq or the Lohan and have them sign it to "Earl." He was at a "club" once and he was making it "rain" and the MC screamed "GEICO MAN'S GOT MONEY!" It stuck. But the real Dash Snow is a sweetheart. He is not mysterious. He just is hard to get in touch with.

FMS: I haven't asked you about what you are into wrt art or emerging artists or what you look at when you need to be inspired. Do you have any comments on that kind of thing? Have you seen/did you like the OMG obelisk at New Museum?

AK: the OMG thing is pretty funny. A "text" piece I got it! I consider myself a fully emerging artist so yeah, I look at "emerging" artists' work. (Who isn't "emerging"?) I try to look at everything but it can be a lot so I shut it off from time to time. When I'm making a show I try my hardest not to look at things. I just work better that way.

FMS: What are your cats' names?

AK: No name for my cats. I tried but nothing stuck. Some of my friends say that's mean but I don't know how having cats who eat whenever they want, sleep wherever they want, and purr five hours a day is "mean".

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Celebrity Sighting

At around 4:56pm Blake Lively came into the store with her boyfriend, Penn Badgley.

She left a green drink with ice on the counter and went to try on some clothes.

Later, she exited, having forgotten her drink on the counter.

Chad was visiting, and he said "do you know who that is?" I said no. Then he explained it to me. He picked up the drink and took a little sip. "It's pretty good," he said.

Monday, March 30, 2009

trying to decide

If I should leave New York for a little while

and work in the woods in BC again this summer

earn between 8 and 20 thousand dollars

live in a tent

call my girlfriend once every 5 days

come back in July and maybe go somewhere else for a while


keep working three days a week, selling clothes

"He's The Master"

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Saturday, March 21, 2009

To transfer between the 7 and the L train you have to walk an entire block underground.

Usually there are two buskers in the middle. The first guy is always sleeping next to a sign that says ‘nytimes published poet.’ He looks homeless. I have never seen anybody pay him to write a poem.

The sign connects his body to a story of ‘downfall,’ or ‘struggling artist.’

Then there is a guy who plays drums on turned over buckets. The big kind you get when you buy huge quantities of pool chemicals. It echoes across the whole underground chamber. Gets louder then louder then really really loud, then quiter then quieter and finally goes away as you duck into the next station.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

I swear my brother is writing some of the spam that I get

Plow through your girl like a bulldozer lol

My brother is an entrepreneur. Link To Brother's Ventures: Pacific Website Company

Friday, March 13, 2009

going to las vegas

Lauren's sister lives in Las Vegas, and I am flying there this evening.

What have I done?

Matt and Kyle's art thing was cool.

I went bowling in Williamsburg for Lauren's birthday; it was cool.

The Russian Concussion is sleeping on my couch. He will be here while I am away, feeding my cat and designing a video game on his massive fluorescent laptop computer. His computer looks like Skate shoes in the late nineties - or basketball shoes that sell for hundreds of dollars. Shoes again. A ridiculous and loud computer.

Aran Darling has been sending me funny videos and pictures. Here is my favorite.

Monday, March 9, 2009

The New Deal

My friends Matt Moravec ('tall Matt') and Kyle Thurman are curating a show.

Haven't seen the artworks yet, but I've seen the space. There are two large glass doors in the entrance, and it is shaped like a half hexagon. The walls are white, obviously; on the right side the ceiling opens up into concrete and exposed ventilation pipes. In the back there is a door to an office that is full or t-shirts designed by famous artists for the gap/whitney biennial.

It is also organized/blogged by A-ron (downtown cred) and has something to do with Art Production Fund (institutional support). All of the artists, I have been told, are younger than I am.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

New Phone

My phone broke so I got a new phone yesterday.

There are two Indian guys who work in the Verizon place on fourteenth street; I remembered them becuase that is who I got the last phone from.

They told me I qualified for a new phone, which is good. I didn't want to buy a new one. There was something langorous and bored about the way they showed me the upmarket phones. I told them I want one that is simple, and looks nice.

While they were doing the paperwork I watched the Seinfeld that was playing on a screen. 'Do you guys get sick of this playing all day?' I said. 'We don't pay attention.'

Then a guy with a beard and skate shoes stormed in and sat down beside me, visibly shaky. 'Can I help you?' said the be-turbanned Indian guy whose beard was combed upwards into his hair.

The guy pulls out his phone, one of these typing flip phones, and says, 'I need you to show me how to put a key lock on this so that my FUCKING GIRLFRIEND can't look through it!'

I just kept quiet and watched the Seinfeld. It was the one about the vasectomy - Elaine cuts her hair.

Later, I would lie in bed and listen to an argument between two sisters, their loud voices echoing around in the courtyard and through my window as if they were in the next room.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Levee

Two days ago I went to Chad’s apartment on S 2nd for the first time and I don’t know if I felt deja vu. I don't know what deja-vu is supposed to feel like.

There were pizza crusts in the stairwell. It felt mad hood: the kind of stairwell that people do business in. Dust everywhere; cigarette buts.

I know that Chad got the room on craigslist and moved in with strangers, so when I thought ‘I’ve been here before,’ I also thought, ‘maybe not.’

I sat in his apartment with his roommates and the layout was also familiar. ‘I’ve been here before,’ I thought, again. ‘Or a building like this, an apartment like this, some two years ago: visiting a bro who was new to the city, who I’ve since fallen out with.’ I asked them how long they had lived in the apartment and they said five years.

So it couldn’t have been the same apartment.

Then they said, ‘do you know (name of bro)?’ I did. ‘He stayed here for a while.’

‘Ahhhhhhhh. So I have been in this apartment,’ I said. ‘That’s neat.’

Chad and I went to a bar called the Levee, which used to be Kokies. They have a special with a shot and a beer for four dollars. Cheap beer and cheap bourbon.

It’s kind of grimy. You get the feeling that they are going for a 'pre-gentrification' vibe.

We drank bourbons and played Jenga. One of the bartender bros was playing The National. It felt like the end of something, or maybe the part after the end.

So we played pool. I have been on a good run against Chad lately. Then these girls came and put their name on the chalkboard.

We had seen the girls before. They had insisted on playing me in Jenga the last time we were at the Levee: a couple of months ago. ‘They must be the regulars,’ said Chad.

I will describe them. The leader is dark-haired and Italian looking, with tattoos on her forearms and big, pouty lips. She carries a small Paris Hilton like dog. She wears low cut V-neck T-shirts which reveal the sides and bottoms of both of her breasts. Her breasts are medium sized and hangy. She is loud. Her hair appears artificially straightened, and she carries maybe ten extra pounds. She is very good at Big Game Hunter.

The one I Jenga-ed is moon faced and slightly shorter than the leader. She also has dark hair and wears baby-doll dresses.

Then there is one that is very short and shaped like a barrel. The short one is the most employable looking.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Live Blogging the Oscars

My sister was in town. She is a law student, and has not yet purchased a blackberry. I found this kind of surprising, though I did not mention it to her.

I have thought of having a blackberry, so that I could 'live-blog' important things that happen to me.

1. Getting a new cat and neutering of new cat (story of loss and building of trust between friends)

2. Having a benign cyst removed from my head (part one the anxiety, part two the opiates)

3. Going to court for public urination (examination of NY judicial system, social class)

4. Becoming intoxicated at a bar ("1 beer down, feeling okay")

5. Working on a movie set ("sitting in a truck with a diet coke")

Friday, February 20, 2009

I'm on Twitter

I'm on twitter.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

World War Z

How does an actor become a character actor?

Some are 'stars' in real life. They probably smile a lot and do adorable things without even thinking about it, making other people smile a lot.

Is a character actor someone who thought they could be a 'star,' or a 'lead,' and went through all of the acting training with that dream, and then was gradually pushed towards more 'character' parts?

How does a character actor become a lead? Does that happen only when the 'character' is something intensely relatable for a big audience? Like Bob De Niro's tough?


Zoe Kazan (Sept. 83, Yale, 5 ft. 4 1/2")
Paul Dano (Jun. 84, Eugene Lang)

Franny and Zooey
Franny = an actress going to Yale
"There isn't anyone out there who isn't Seymour's Fat Lady. That includes your Professor Tupper, buddy. And all his goddam cousins by the dozens. There isn't anyone anywhere that isn't Seymour's Fat Lady. Don't you know that?"

Zooey Deschanel (1980, Northwestern {did not complete}

*Bonus* JD Salinger's Uncollected Writing Online *Bonus*

Monday, February 16, 2009

I've wanted to use this pic for something for a long time but I don't think I will find a relative context so here goes

Picture Removed. It was not funny.

Now: Sometimes I cruise theories on wikipedia.

The World Values Survey.

I read about that guy who wrote that.

Postmaterialism and the Postmaterialist.

I just read Revolutionary Road after seeing the movie, and I think it was a good way to read the book - even though I was picturing Leo and Kate vibrating with anger pretty much the whole way through - because I was very aware of it's structure without having to read it 2x.

It reminded me of Erving Goffman, and Dramaturgy.

Dramaturgy = good way to think about jobs you're not into.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Heavy Vietnam Vibes

I watched The Deer Hunter last night, and started Apocalypse Now this evening. Maybe it is because I read Tree of Smoke earlier, but I feel like I am just coming to a place where I can understand/process those heavy Vietnam vibes.
The opening of Apocalypse Now gave me tingles. I couldn't find it on youtube, so here goes:
1) Slow mo jungle trees swaying with the beginning of the Doors' 'The End;' yellow smoke inexplicably rising from below like mustard gas, and helicopters flying through the front of the frame in slow mo, but still so quickly that you barely see them; and the helicopter noises are all stretched out and bass heavy - 'whuk whuk whuk whuk'
2) Trees burst into flames as Jim Morrison begins his singing 'this is the end,' the camera panning to the right, until Martin Sheen's face is super-imposed onto the left side of the frame, upside down, smoking a cigarette, sweaty, 'beautiful friend.'

Saturday, February 14, 2009

buying a toothbrush

Today I bought a toothbrush. I had to choose between like 10,000 toothbrushes at the Duane Reade. All of the toothbrushes were colorful, and bright. They ranged in price from roughly 3 dollars to about 10. There were four or five brands, and one no-name Duane Read brand.

I didn't want to get the no name brand toothbrush because it didn't have those little plastic feeler-things on the side. The no-name's bristles were lighter colored, too, and set perpendicularly to the handle; whereas the other brushes had angled bristles that looked, I don't know, more agile and effective.

I settled on the Oral B Advantage Glide with a lime green handle and a tourqoise head and feelers. It was around five dollars. I think it is a middle of the road toothbrush, which is what I wanted.

Friday, February 13, 2009

how would you feel if, when you were at the height of your powers, you were still quite weak?

Last night Chad and I peed on a building and got tickets for it.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Airplane The Movie

I enjoy finding little towns - patches of buildings really, skirted by curvilinear highways - and speculating on the daily lives of the people in the towns.

I direct anger towards airlines. The person responsible for the headphone policy on major airlines will undoubtedly go to hell, and end up somewhere near the manufacturer of the plastic containers used in college cafeterias.

I also like to speculate on the lives of the stewardesses. Do you think anybody really ever has sex in a plane these days? It seems pretty much impossible to do without being totally obvious.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Burn After Reading/Bright Lights, Big City/ Bret Easton Ellis

My heart pounded like crazy at the border but the guy let me through. Thereafter, I immediately drank a 22 ounce beer and ate a crispy crunch.

I watched the first thirty minutes of Burn After Reading on the airplane. I was psyched that they had it on an airplane, and psyched that I had noise canceling headphones.

I watched it before with my friend Matt. This time, on the plane, reminded me how funny it is. Esp. John Malkovich.

On the weekend I read Bright Lights Big City, which Matt also recommended to me a little while ago. I thought it was okay. I can understand why McInerney has not grown into a great novelist.

But I did read the book all the way through, and quite quickly. So there is something. And Raymond Carver blurbed it. There is something else. Here is a picture of Jay and Bret Ellis in 1990 with a model, meant, presumably, to underscore the 'lifestyle' people were interested in them for writing about.

I don't want to put those guys in the same boat though. I really loved American Psycho.

I think what separates a writer like Ellis from a writer like McInerney is that Ellis makes a more convincing sad face.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Stuck in Saskatoon Commentary

I did some research on Saskatoon last night, and went back over the piece written by Lindsay Coleman recently for Vice.

She describes a very terrible place - she deals with prostitution, drug addiciton, child abuse, gang violence, and pubic stubble in under two thousand words.

I must admit my impressions of Saskatoon have not been so extreme thus far.

Yet I am staying a mere six blocks from the intersection Lindsay Coleman writes about.

Here is the picture from her facebook profile.

She says that Saskatoon is 15 years behind everywhere else. Saskatoon is a small northern city. I think it's culture is somewhat indifferent, and somewhat independent. I don't want to bother getting farther into this. The story reeks.

Saturday, February 7, 2009


I am here:

This is my first experience of 'Real Canadian Winter.' It is not so bad!

I am watching Hockey Night in Canada, and feel like I am in 'Real Canada.' Apparently, while I have been gone, there has been a change to the Hockey Night in Canada theme song. This caused many people to be angry.

The new song has bagpipes, which is interesting, because most of the people here look Scottish. I think it is very good. In around thirty years it could possibly have the same level of emotional significance as the old one, maybe.

8.7 out of 10.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Movie Reviews

Two Movies with Overlapping Relevant Themes - BOTH ARE VERY GOOD

1. Happy Go Lucky
-watched this at nyff
-made me think about charity, positivity, naivete and evil

2. Operation Filmmaker
-watched this last night
-had a sinking feeling, like, holy shit

I will write about these together more later.

Monday, February 2, 2009


Caught the 7 train home at Sheridan square and walked a block underground to the L train at 14th street and 6th ave. A lot of people were waiting for the train.
We all squeezed into the train, until we thought that we couldn't possibly squeeze any more. Then some guy said, 'everybody come on, let's go we've got to get in here,' and we squeezed even more.
I hated this man. I hated when he said that.
The doors tried to close a number of times but couldn't. The guy said, 'come on.' We squeezed even further.
We squeezed so much that the train couldn't run. The speaker said 'because of the door problems this train will be an express train and the next stop will be Bedford ave.'
People gufffawed and exited the train en mass. The whole time people were exiting the doors were trying to close on them. Then one guy put his back into it and held it open.
When the next train came we squeezed again. By the time we all got in it was so packed that a girl in front of me was having something of a breakdown. She said 'can you not push me!' to me, and I shrugged in the direction of behind me, where four or five people were pushing and squeezing. The girl gasped a little bit, as if she couldn't breathe.
Another, earthier woman called her out. 'You know nobody likes this,' she said, 'you're not the only person.'
The first girl pretended not to be offended in the way of a high school valedictorian.
Most of the people who were squeezed were quiet, including the main squeezer from the first train. I appreciated it.

Dissapointed that Nadal Beat Federer

I hate the way that Rafa dresses and I love the way the Swiss presents himself. Rafa reminds me of Villalobos.

Which is funny, because lately I've been listening to more music like this:

I like it because when you listen to it it's just there. Leave it alone. You might start to feel it after a while: if you can just stop thinking about whether or not it is good, or if it could be your thing, or if you would want to be seen listening to it.

Interview with Ricardo Villalobos:

You can imagine what his life is like.

I think he is interesting.

Have you seen it's all gone Pete Tong? It's about a DJ. I remember there are scenes of Pete Tong in Ibiza doing lots of drugs. 'Living the dream,' basically. And then the script makes him aware of his mortality, I think.

Sunday, February 1, 2009


Thinking of making myself look more like Lou Reed circa 74.

Thinking about Lou Reed a bit, ego, and the meaning of drugs. Drugs are no longer an act of transgression. Smoking, too, has changed. And fur. I think people look like morons when they wear fur.

I figured that, because he is in jail, I could write Conrad Black and request an interview. That was about three weeks ago, and he has not responded.

For a long time there has been a story inside of me about the Klondike Gold Rush. I love Pierre Berton's book.

I am also thinking of writing a book of interconnected short stories about people living in a tree planting camp. I think it should be about as long as Jesus' Son. I would self publish and send copies to people by mail. It could become my calling card.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Trip To Ikea

We wanted the NR, but ended up on the Q, and realized this later, getting out at Canal. The NR was not running, we learned. We waited for the M train and saw three J trains pass. The final one, I asked the conductor if there was an M train coming soon. She said there were no M trains on the weekend. We transferred to the 5 train, got off at bowling green, walked to pier 11 and boarded a special Ikea water taxi.

Some guy was talking to everybody on the boat, putting on a bit of a show, trying to make people happy. He said he was 50 years old and he loved his job. He told some jokes that nobody laughed at, and expressed a kind of menacing patriotism at times. He said he was from the Rockaways, and I wondered if he was a racist.

We got to Ikea and followed a gray cement path past thousands of shiny affordable objects. We bought three shelves and a cinnamon bun, then waited for the boat. Rode the boat. Walked to the 5 train. Took the 5 train. Got home. Tried to install shelves but realized we did not have the right drill bit. Walked to the hardware store. Hardware store was closed. Picked up laundry.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Two Things

Dushko Petrovitch:
"Careerism is this century's biggest art movement."

"What is the difference between a failure and a post-careerist?"

Natalie Dylan:
"I am selling my virginity."

"Who the fuck is Natalie Dylan?"