XXXIX. Portals< Previous Chapter | Next Chapter >

Paul Davidson Called Me White 

One day I was walking by, with a walkman on, when I caught PaulyD giving me an awkward eye...

It turns out that fool thinks he’s blacker than I am. Over at his dainty, suburban penthouse, Words for My Enjoyment, home slice started talking shit.

But down here on the JSDC block, in the ‘DC hood, we know all about that.

Of course I could have proved that he is whiter than I am by going on and on about how he wears Birkenstocks while he watches his maid clean his house and his gardener trim his rosebushes and lady slippers, but, instead, I kept to the Rules of Video Log and busted out a single-take video. Actually, after reading his post I went down to the parking garage and procured said video from the guard there. It’s from earlier today when I first woke-up and went downstairs to pour out a 40 for Pac. Who knew there were surveillance cameras? I didn't until my roommate told me.

Anyway, that’s right, Paul Davidson: I am more black than you even in my pajamas. So, from me to you, you white-picket-fence loving, weekend clam-baking, American Express toting, yacht driving, cricket playing blogga: It’s a rap-off with full street-cred honor at stake. Now bask in the streetness of my amazing, high-quality, gangsta VLOG.

[Video removed because Method Man got too jealous. Too bad you missed it, sucka.]

Tad-dow! Dissed! What?

That’s what I thought.

It’s a good thing this surveillance video quality is shitty and you can’t see my hardcore facial expressions or else you’d be really scared.

As the great GZA once said,

Energy is felt once the cards are dealt / With the impact of roundhouse kicks from black belts / That attack, the mic-fones like cyclones or typhoon / I represent from midnight to high noon

All I have to say, PaulyD, is you best study a tape of NWA,

And never bring a blog to a VLOG fight.

PS: What the hell is Bananarama?

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To the guy-person who called me sometime last week who has not received any return message form me in any form:

Your message is literally two seconds long and I can’t make out any of it because the call dropped.

It sounds like you are saying,




Or something.

Literally, the message is two seconds long so I cannot even discern whether or not you are someone I know, a friend or a foe… and I have asked my guy and they have all been eliminated. (From the list: They aren’t, like, beheaded. Or somethingx2.)

I believe the call came from an LA number because I saw the 310 but I couldn’t answer at the time. My voicemail doesn’t tell me where the incoming call came from and for some reason the “missed calls” does not have the number.

And that’s what happened.

. . .

There. A year from this point when I run into this person and they’re like, “I called you and you never called me back!” I will link them to this post so that they may understand what transpired. The event is now logged for infinity.

And yes of course I realize that given the amount of trouble I’ve spent on the two-second message it’s probably a telemarketer or the phone company calling to thank me for my new contract with them or something along those lines.

Maybe you are right. Or, quite possibly, it could be someone challenging me to a duel and now my honor is at stake and I don’t even know.

I’m sure you can appreciate my predicament.

You know what would be rad?

If I didn’t own a phone.

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Worlds x Infinity, Portals Snap Between 

In case you didn’t know, the exteriors of the Studio 60 that is the physical Studio in Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip are filmed at the “World Famous” Hollywood Palladium. Which is pronounced Pa-LAY-di-um, not PAL-a-DI-um, like I originally thought upon moving here until my roommate corrected me while adding a silent “how could you not know that? It’s ‘world famous!’” all in one sarcastic, post-correction, nod. Anyway, the EXT. Studio 60 actually is on Sunset Blvd., although not on Sunset Strip, which is further west. So that’s semi-truthy. The Palladium looks much better the way production shoots and frames it; with it’s blue neon lights, et cetera, and the boring parking lots and white paint cut out.

I recognized the location immediately in the pilot and realized that I had driven past one of their shoots. And hey, guess what? Tonight, during the show, they were shooting there again: At the Palladium.

I know because I drive by the Palladium at least once a day. This is because it’s by the Gower Gulch, a.k.a. the portal to another dimension, a.k.a. the place where once I nearly got caught between a dozen policemen with weapons drawn and the end of a car chase, a.k.a. the place where a biker built like Michael Clark Duncan going by the name of “Madd” (that’s right, two ds per the back of his leather, biker vest) once grabbed my long hair and smelled it, a.k.a. the place where I once saw a homeless lady cop a squat right beneath the streetlamp whilst across the street a fancy launch party for a new, popular mobile device was happening with full on red carpet, paparazzi, celebrities and other people who have private bathrooms inside homes with refrigerators and food and medication for when they get sick and some illusion of dignity. I don’t think that either of those worlds noticed one another, and as I drove between, I felt like I had stretched… and snapped some sort of rubber-band line that connected the two corners.

It was red.

(The rubber band, not the corner.)

And thick-wide.

And only I could see it.

The corner, on the other hand, was way too well lit and anyone who looked could see it: Not exactly a choice location for, well… I thought that’s what alleys were for?

No photographer abandoned the photag pen aside the carpet to get the shot, though. And if one had, who would have published such a cutting image of social inequality and irony? Photos of heiresses at launch parties are a sure bet.

So only I saw.

And while I was at the Gower Gulch Starbucks tonight, the 60 crew was across the street at the carwash behind huge, rigged lights that illuminated the front of the Palladium where the poster boxes had been filled with Studio 60 posters and the back right parking lot that runs aside El Centro was set for craft services complete with centerpieces and table cloths and a few trailers to hide the actors. What it must be like to watch from across the street in the hungry, homeless shadows as the intruding lights and pricey infrastructure rise around the stoop you usually sleep on.

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8mm Dig 

From the tomb-like basement of my Great Aunt, as discovered by Le Archaeologist M.Sto, comes…

My New Present

I will soon proceed to creep you out via freaky, old-school film styles.

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Knots in the Cartwheel 

I would like for you to know that the bloody, blue-ish knot on my foot is due to a cartwheel.

When I went to train yesterday I was slightly tired because I was getting over a cold so I didn’t feel like I worked as hard as usual. But then I got home and was revived by some sort of weird second wind, and decided to do cartwheels in my bedroom. I don’t really remember making a decision, actually: Suddenly I was just doing cartwheels back and forth and it was all good. Well, I must have drifted a little close to one end of the room because at about cartwheel 10 or 11, on the way down, my extended, nicely pointed foot slammed into my vanity on the way to the floor. The impact scattered makeup and wonder-toxin beauty vials everywhere, leaving me laid up with a bloody sock and picking my blush and eye shadow out of the trashcan.

I went to take some photos of my foot because it’s all pretty damn funny in that I didn’t actually break anything such as in the time I broke my finger playing nerf basketball in my parents’ bedroom, or think I broke anything such as in the time I injured my rib fending off attackers. Like I said I went to take some photos, but then my camera, (which once I thought was broken but only needed new batteries,) I found is actually broken despite having new batteries. The screen only shows me squiggly lines.

I tried to win a new digital camera online. I didn’t win.


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Inbox: Bobby Pins 

As I propped my foot on the vanity’s lip in order to survey the damage, my eye fell upon the top drawer on the left, the one with all the stuff tossed in it, and I started rooting through it as if there were no injury, no blood, and no blush in the bin. …Ribbons, Guinot samples, a light-pink measuring tape, hairbrushes, old Mac compacts waiting to be recycled and, at the bottom… as is at the bottom of every vanity drawer… bobby pins.

. . .

I know I’ve been linking out a lot lately. As you know, I’m fascinated by comparative mythology. On a larger scale, I’m interested in comparative information and ideas. I don’t suppose it’s considered good to be a sort of generalist, but I’ve been one for my entire life and I like it just fine, thankyouverymuch. True, I don’t have some degree in sociology, but I’m actively thinking across the subject nonetheless.

What I mean is that I tend to be good at a wide variety of things over super-genius-great at one exact thing. It’s the equivalent of being the utility player in life. Not that I don’t have my specialties, but it’s simply not enough for me to focus on one thing. I like to be able to look at the big, comparative picture and also dig into the nitty-gritty. See that? Even in talking about being general and well-rounded, I have to talk about how I also have to be other things, too, (such as specific in some fields), because being general would be too specific. So I have to be specific and general. You know?

What the hell was all that?

Bobby pins.

And why the hell won’t my printer work? Seriously.

Steven Stephen Colbert vs. George Lucas: Lightsaber Duel!

Anyway, from the writer of Dilbert:

I heard a useful rule about predicting success during my (failed) attempt at creating a hit Dilbert animated TV show. While watching the Dilbert pilot being tested on a focus group, an experienced executive explained to me the most non-intuitive way to predict success. Since then I’ve observed it to be true a number of times. It goes like this:

If everyone exposed to a product likes it, the product will not succeed.

Think about that for a minute before I explain why everyone liking something predicts failure. If you get this answer right, I’m guessing that you are already successful yourself. Tell me in the comments if I’m right about that.

Scott gets it, knows how to take the temperature of the audience. Read the rest here.

There are also more links for thought under the comments on this entry.

Isn’t it funny how, at the bottom of so many vanity drawers throughout time and generations, you find an array of odds and ends, mostly manifesting in bobby pins?

Here’s another one:

I’ve noticed that in your photos you don’t seem to wear jewelry or watches. Am I right? Why is that?

Good eye. I don’t like time or timepieces that track time. It’s not like there aren’t already clocks attached to every object I own. I also don’t seek to wear jewelry. Jewelry is not functional and snags when you’re trying to climb fences, and it will get you robbed or make you feel bad when you lose it in all its preciousness.

One exception is the wedding band I used to wear always, from sixth grade up until about a year ago, on my right hand. I found the ring in M.Sto’s jewelry box in sixth, and she let me take it for keeps. M.Sto is allergic to some metals and as it turns out, when she and The Grizz were married, she was allergic to her original wedding band, so he got her a new one (the old one being the one I have). Sometimes, when I’m in a bad mood, I wear the ring. I prefer ribbons and fabric as accessories… layers, knee socks… things that are useful and functional. And awesome. (You won’t believe how functional extra bits of fabric and string are in a bind.) Which is a great transition to this question…

The two times I have seen you in person you have had a yellow ribbon on. Once in your hair and once on your left wrist. I was just wondering if that meant anything or if it was just fashion because it looked cute.

The origins of the yellow ribbon idea go something like this,

'Round her neck she wears a yeller ribbon,
She wears it in winter and the summer so they say,
If you ask her "Why the decoration?"
She'll say "It's fur my lover who is fur, fur away.

However, now the yellow ribbon has a wider meaning: Just like John Mayer, (“now if we had the power / to bring our neighbors home from war / they would have never missed a Christmas / no more ribbons on their door “), I’m waiting for folks to come home from war. In my mind the ribbon implies hope and provides a reminder that people attach an emotion and story to when they see it on my person.

And of course the color yellow has a long history of different symbolisms in different cultures. But I don’t think that’s what we’re talking about. That’s just the sort of thing that interests me (color symbolism). Also, watch this transition… (You will be amazed…)

I hate writing papers, like you said the topics teachers give aren’t interesting most of the time!! Are there any papers you had to write that you actually liked? I hate highschool sometimes. –Sigh–

Let me preface for those outside of our e-mail chain that I dislike analytical papers because the majority of the time the paper subjects are assigned and therefore not the topic in regards to the work that interests me most. There are a few papers that I became obsessed with, however:

- Use of color symbolism in Beloved. (One of the paper topics offered wherein we had a choice + Zing!: Transition.)
- Was Shakespeare racist?: An examination of race and color in Othello. (One of the paper topics offered wherein we had a choice.)
- Why does Grease remain well-loved and relevant to teens today? (Open paper topic.)
- Comparison/contrast between City of Angels and the original German Film Wings of Desire in regards to the changes required for the Hollywood version versus the more artistic, German version. (Semi-open paper topic wherein we could pick from a list of 100 films and seek approval on our own specific topic.)

Boo-yah!: I got As on all of those. The key to being a good student, I think, is to make the most of your assignments by owning them. Use your assignments to explore things you care about.

Such as when our History teacher required us all to do History Fair projects and I did mine about the History of Baseball. (This was at the height of my softball career.)

Or such as when we were assigned a persuasive speech in communications and I chose to do mine on the phenomenon of the Spice Girls, why what they did worked (off a philosophy-story), and how if they could attain that level of success, then certainly we are all quite capable. I got an A on both of those, too. The themes of all continue to be prevalent in much of my work: The illusion of magic that’s a product of keeping your eye on the ball (art/message/product-quality), the capability of the individual, taking the pulse of society… archetypes... .

Pick something that’s interesting and relevant to you. Pick something that you want to know about, to pick apart, to understand, to compare. Challenge yourself. Use your time wisely.

Such as when C.Sto did a speech on why men are biologically expendable because we thought that was funny and totally provable.

She got an A on that one. Male professor, too. Smart times.

What is the best way to view JSDC?

I format everything on a Mac/Safari, so JSDC text looks best and is fitted properly when viewed on Safari.


Did you hear that Britain is like all peace outtie from Iraq?

I’ve heard from a few U.S. troops who were at war that the Brits were very poorly stocked, that they often arrived without ammo and with thin gear, low-quality gear, so we’d toss them a few magazines and help them out. In hearing those stories, it’s something that I almost understand - the loyalties and the oppositions and working against certain extremes - except I don’t by a hair. I can’t quite grasp it because even my best metaphors don’t put me in the landscape of mortal peril far from the comforts of home.

But I do understand the feeling, in a way.

Oh, and what do you think of the Red idea?


Who is your favorite comedian?

That guy Demetri Martin cracks me up.

Hey Jess, I’m so glad you’re offering something super limited for TSL. Greg’s art is so fantastic. I was wondering if the money from the prints is being used to help the movie’s making? Not that it matters I already ordered, just curious like a ninja should be.

Why, I’m so very glad you asked! Yes, the profit goes directly to development, which has us excited over the whole thing. I should have said a bunch about that, really. I can’t believe I didn’t.

I want to take a moment to say that I know it seems like we are selling quite a few things as compared to usual when the only thing I’ve ever sold is Aidmheil and usually I have nothing available. Greyfeather is being printed to order, so that won’t be on sale past the holidays. The prints are something I’m really proud to be offering, and that will help us out a lot with development, and that I hope and expect you will enjoy, and which will also be collector's items. When the prints sell out they will obviously no longer be on sale, so aside from the undetermined future of the Greyfeather series (dependent on your interest), I don’t have, like, some grand merchandising plan for the next year, or anything else planned for availability. So these two things have sort of come at once, which feels a little strange to me. But it is hugely wonderful to have art available, to be able to show and share, and to have that option for all of us.

So thanks for bearing with us as we sort things out and operate as best we can in an independent manner.

And thanks for your purchases of Greyfeather, Aidmheil and the prints because all of the profit from that is currently going directly toward film development and I know I've said it above but I can't help repeating because I'm really happy over the whole affair. Beyond that, your simple act of "demanding it" and support really, really do help, even if you can’t see the tangible effects of such yet. Thank you, thank you for participating and thinking and for being here, none of which is required on any level, all of which is greatly appreciated as we strive to raise the bar. There are a handful of amazing professionals working on aspects of TSL right now on spec, for the love, and I adore working with all of them and the profits from the art will help us out loads, not to mention, as I said, giving us a chance to do story-work we like and share story-work we’re proud of with you.

So, to sum it all up: Yay! (Yes, I said "yay": I was due.)

Bobby Pin: How good is South Park this season?

“People? You mean ‘sheeple.’” –George Bush character, South Park

Oh and the film The Queen? Loved it. But, you know, I am terribly British. I do believe it’s the best film I’ve seen since Oscar time last year. Maybe you will like it, too.

Hey and a Wingman was in L.A. from out of town and we totally had coffee. That was cool.

Check this editorial on junkets and useless critic’s quotes and things you should know by a guy called Colin Tait, who forms his remarks after attending the print portion of a film junket. As someone who has been through the junket process numerous times, I can tell you he’s spot on in his observations.

. . .

My hand just scratched the bottom of the drawer, so this must be the end.

It is raining in LA.

Fucking lovely! And I really mean that. I think I shall pull back my hair out of my face via usage of said bobby pins, and go stand on the roof in the rain, (that is why I have so many handy, after all: Those bobby pins).

“Of course bobby pins are also used for lock picking,” she said, with a snap that clearly meant, “Such as in the case of the locked door to the roof.”

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