Tuesday, August 16

China, Bay Area, Broadside Pride.

Well, I have returned from my whirlwind tour of eastern mainland China for the course Traditional and Contemporary Architecture, Landscape Design, and Urban Development in Select Chinese Cities. We (Sydneyann, the rest of the class, and I) visited Beijing, Suzjhou, Wuxi, Hangzhou, and Shanhai. I bought the best tea in the world, literally. Grown and packaged ONLY in a small and very rich village outside Hangzhou. Only 1000 Kilos are grown per year and most are distributed directly to foreign leaders by the president of China.

The thing that most surprised me about China is its raging consumerism--seems to rival ours. I am working on a presentation on American fast food in China (primarily Pizza Hut, McDonald's. Starbucks, and KFC) and a journal. To avoid posting incessantly on the topic here I will later provide a link to my journal.

On the way to China I spent a night at home, in my old bed. Difference: with my wife. Weird? Not as much as you might expect.

Also on the way to China, I spent time with Geoff and Eli in San Francisco, due to a delayed flight. We went to Eli's art school (SF School of Art), ate at Mario's Gypsy Cigar Shop, and tried to get tattoos of freckles (the parlor was closed). Also, we went to City Lights. I hadn't been in a while, and miraculously was able to escape with no books (except for Wicked, bought by Sydneyann) and two broadsides (Robert Hass, Lucille Clifton).

On the way back, Air China sucked again, and we missed our connections and got stuck flying stand-by on the red-eye at 12:30 AM. So we went up to Berkeley to visit Isaak, which was nice. Because I haven't been to Berkeley. We also met up with Geoff, for dinner, since he lives in Oakland, at an incredible Indian place called something like Chaat's, that surprisingly has a location in Dallas.

It was interesting to see Isaak since his mastectomy. The hormones have almost supplied him with a goatee--I believe he will beat my Cherokee blood to it. It is strange to see as a man a person with whom you have so many memories (and good ones) as a woman, but it was nice to see him nonetheless. Especially in the place he grew up.

Special thanks are due to both Geoff and Isaak for driving us to Foster City and SFO, respectively, late at night. And for a good time too. Though, to my knowledge, they do not read this.

Dan-o, John are back in town. Ben and Rachel get in tonight. I need to call Con.

I am excited about picking up my handwritten "Distressed Haiku" by Donald Hall. It will look nice above my desk, alongside his letter, some Richard Eberhart manuscripts, broadsides signed by Ginsberg, Gorey, Cabot Black, Keillor, Trillin, and Verghese. I am very proud of my collection, and if you are in Norman you should drop by to see it. I convinced Sydneyann that my Albee broadside, with a poem by his pet, was great for the entrance to our house and after three days of hammering it is almost straight.

I have a lot of errands today, and this post is long and boring enough.

Thursday, July 28


It is deep evening and I have newly purchased Sufjan Stevens invites you to: Come on feel the Illinoise and Sufjan Stevens presents . . . Greetings From Michigan, The Great Lake State. George recommended them to me over tricolored pasta here at home.

Here is a list: Things that have happened since my last blogpost:

Idyllwild, California.

New apartment.
New dog, Okiedoke. 1
Pre-wedding craziness.
Marriage. 2
Cancun, Q. Roo, MX.
ANTH 4953 American Popular Culture. 3
OU Alumni Outreach Program. 4
Birthday. 5
No more OU Alumni Outreach Program. 4

Notes on the list "Things that haave happened since my last blogpost:"
1. Okiedoke has since gained three ounces, to weigh in at 2lb 1ooz. She has a hernia that will be repaired along with the cleaning of her teeth on Monday August 1. Please keep her in mind. 2. Yes. 3. Final on Monday. Paper of Jessica Simpson ("Chicken or Fish?") due on Monday. I am now a neomarxist, feminist, anti-consumerism crazy. 4. "Best job on campus," worst job on the planet. I lasted two weeks before I cracked--glorified telemarketing is not for me. New job? Chairman, Common Tongue. 5. Family visited. Seven in a two room apt. for three days. Excitement! My wife gave me a twelve-drawered tea furniture and my mother gave me a copy of The Royal Tenenbaums signed by Wes Anderson and Owen Wilson.

I am writing a poem about turn-of-the-century wrestlers (called hookers). Why I use so many hyphens in the phrase "turn of the century" escapes me.

A brownie in the stomach is worth two in the oven.

I will make good of this concept.


And ride my bike.

Wednesday, May 25

Word Court City

So there is a real Word Court--and I'm sure its judge has a gavel too.

Tuesday, May 24

Finally, a cheap post.

I heart NIKE.

Monday, April 25

And I say your uncle is a crooked French Canadian. . .

I return to blogland tired. John has nagged me without cease about this blog and my lack of the promised commentary. I will get there, John. Might I remind you of your own sporadic blog habits?

I am listening to July, July by The Decemberists. Fine band, lovely song. Soundtrack to my procrastination. School is almost over!

I am working on a piece on Avril Lavigne, so keep your eyes peeled. And also, last weekend. And Cantonese Chai! Perhaps a piece on ORANGINA too.

Work now. Sleep soon. More later.

Thursday, April 21

Ezekiel, Mark Strand.

Commentary later. Now:

And he said to me, "Son of man, eat what is before you, eat this scroll; then go and speak to the house of Israel." So I opened my mouth, and he gave me the scroll to eat.

Then he said to me, "Son of man, eat this scroll I am giving you and fill your stomach with it." So I ate it, and it tasted as sweet as honey in my mouth.

Then he said to me, "Son of man, go now to the house of Israel and speak my words to them. . . ."



Eating Poetry

Ink runs from the corners of my mouth.
There is no happiness like mine.
I have been eating poetry.

The librarian does not believe what she sees.
Her eyes are sad
and she walks with her hands in her dress.

The poems are gone.
The light is dim.
The dogs are on the basement stairs and coming up.

Their eyeballs roll,
their blond legs burn like brush.
The poor librarian begins to stamp her feet and weep.

She does not understand.
When I get on my knees and lick her hand,
she screams.

I am a new man,
I snarl at her and bark,
I romp with joy in the bookish dark.

Wednesday, April 20

Cries for Pity, Missed Excitement, Taco Bell, and an Bonus Discussion of My Disappointment with Underground/Indie Hip Hop.

Well, many things happened tonight. Unfortunately, due to an ethics test, I was unable to participate in many of them.

Here is an abbreviated list:
John tromboned in a jazz concert to which he provided me with comp tickets.
OU lost to OSU in a very close tennis match.
Elie Wiesel spoke at OCC.

I saw the doubles matches (we beat OSU), but had to leave before the singles ended.

And skipping dinner meant I got Taco Bell.

But I am a little sad about this ethics test. Perhaps I will rename my blog "Please Pity Me Because of the Tests I Must Take and the Things I Am Unable to Do Because of Them." That would probably make it more interesting.

Tomorrow I am going home! I will post a piece on antiquated grammar rules and Invisible Children.

An unexceptional, boring post about hip hop I wrote this morning:

Listening to
Mechanical Royalty on Napster. It is a fine album, for the most part, with a few exceptional Aesop Rock feats. Reminds me of the two week underground/indie hip hop phase I explored a few months ago. Nothing too deep underground, just your typical Saul Williams, Sage Francis, Aesop, etcetera. Eventually they dissapoint, because they fall into the same bad habits of more popular rappers: violence, profanity, and poor treatment of women. It frustrated/s me that they too talk about themselves in such grand, vain terms. They don't all claim to solve these problems , but they do talk about "the state of hip hop."

They are quite talented. I saw Saul Williams at the Engine Room with Kevin (who won free tickets on FM 91.7)--incredible show, with a band.

I have never seen a man look as white as Sage, and I've never heard a white man have as much a natural sense of rythm as Sage.

Why does it seem impossible to make
good hip hop with no profanity (I mean an artist's entire body of work.)? I'm sure there is someone, somewhere. The "Christian Rap" I have heard sounds like it is five years old (From the year 2000 and like it is written by a child). Visit that web site and you will see what I mean. I have at times had a soft spot for Grits.

I guess the world is waiting for my rap debut--but I'm still looking for my Dr. Dre. . .