Yet another belated post. You guys know the drill…
I arrived around 7, an hour before the boat was set to deploy. The chiptunes cruise to be exact. A big deal had been made about getting there on time; the boat was setting out at 8, period.
When I showed up at the location, which was 23rd Street and FDR Highway, there was already a very long line. But the people standing in it didn?t looking like your typical chiptunes crowd. It was mostly old black ladies actually. I then saw the guy who runs The Tank, which is more or less the home for chiptunes in the city, and the folks who were behind the cruise. He actually recognized me and told me to head around the corner, to the further most pier, and in a few minutes, I saw a line of pasty white dorks and knew it was the one.
I was expected Dave Mauro, but since he was not in sight, and I was bored, I decided to give him a call. He was still in Brooklyn, at work, and was on his way. I stressed the importance of getting there by 8, or else, and then he mentioned how Damian should be there and to give him a holler. Damian is a good friend of Dave?s that I?ve met a couple of times, and he?s a totally cool dude. And I did spot a guy that sorta looked like him? I wasn?t 100% sure since, once again, I?ve only seen the guy a handful of times. Problem was, this dude was with a girl and they were clearly arguing. And I didn?t want to be an asshole and go, in the midst of a serious discussion, “Hey dude! Remember me? How?s it hanging?!”
Then this Venezuelan dude next to me went “So… chiptunes, eh?” and we immediately began talking. He (unfortunately I forget the guy?s name) was just getting into the scene, so as someone who is fairly familiar to it, I went over stuff, like notable performers, the tools of the trade, what to expect, what his expectations were, etc. Really nice, as was his friend, who was Dominican, but grew up in Mexico (he appeared Mexican to me). And then soon, I began to chit-chat with this other dude, who I had seen at many past shows, named Peter. Again nice guy, and wouldn?t you know, he knew Dave as well!
Soon the line began to move and then thing we hear is a girl scream towards the back of the line, and when we all turned around, we saw her friend try to get into the water below. There was four of them in their group, two girls and two guys. One girl was really cute? I had noticed her almost immediately when I first arrived at the scene. She was also the one freaking out, and screaming “Somebody help me!” Everyone was confused. It was apparent that something had fallen into the water, but we had no idea what. Maybe it was medicine? What else was that important?
It was her fucking credit card. And the moment everyone on my end found out, we all began to laugh. Actually some of us began to yell at the girl; Peter was actually pissed that all the yelling and screaming was over something stupid. More that one person shot back with “Who fucking cares?” and “Why don?t you just cancel the card?” Needless to say, both responses were spot on. Meanwhile, the girl was getting pissed and responded with “It?s not funny!” Which of course was wrong, because it was indeed VERY funny. And naturally, the statement got a ton of laughs as well. Soon the card began to drift away and head towards the other side, where the start of the line was, and the girl began to scream “Somebody get it!!” and of course, no one could have given a rat?s ass. Everyone was still confused, and becoming increasingly annoyed, by her antics. I theorized that it was her daddy?s credit card, and she?d be killed if anything had happened to it. It was also one of those blue American Express cards, the kind millionaires carry, which added to the who gives a shit about this dumb young cunt attitude that everyone had.
Anyhow, once on the boat, I immediately ran into Jeremiah and Josh, two of the evening’s headliners. Told both guys about the calamity outside, of course, and I ended up chitchatting with Josh for quite a bit, since I hadn?t seen the guy since New Year?s. We were standing by the bathroom, and we noticed a slight aroma at first, but ignored it, though soon it was too much to let slide. Apparently the toilet had overflowed, and we hadn?t even left the dock! Hell, I don?t even think anyone had used it!
I got a beer with my two new friends from down south (at $5 a bottle, the price was average and therefore acceptable), passed on the shitty buffet food (which at $6 a dish, was a total rip-off), and instead dined on the free brownies and peanuts that someone supplied. Then Dave finally showed up, and him, myself, Peter, his girlfriend, and about 70 other people all crowed up onto the forward deck. At this point, the boat was finally lose, so along with the very windy, choppy waters, it was hard to get stable footing. Well, at least it was for me; I clearly did not have sea legs, whereas everyone else was doing much better. And I wasn?t even drunk. I swear!
Then decided to go inside, to the dance floor/performance area, and ran into Jake. Again, caught up with the guy since I hadn?t seen him in a while; I felt dumb for being forgetful and not giving him a ring that one weekend when myself and the rest of the gang watched Black Belt Jones and the Karate Trilogy, especially since it was originally supposed to be part of shitty movie night, something that both Jake and I came up with a long whiles back. Eventually, Josh showed up again, and I asked him how things were going to work, which at that point was very soon. But he also confessed that he was very nervous about his performance since he?s prone to seasickness, and like I said, the boat was certainly rocking that night.
Well in the end, the constant motion of the ocean, which at times was extremely abrupt did nothing to hinder his performance, nor anyone else?s. If anything it might have enhanced things a bit, at least for us audience members; on my end, I didn?t need to get too liquored up for this particular booze cruise to have a hard time standing. But considering that white people can?t dance anyway (no matter how cute the ladies might be), etc, etc.
Perhaps I always say this, or maybe I feel so strongly this time around because I hadn?t seen live chiptunes since? gosh, the Blip Fest last winter, but everyone, Bit Shifter, Nullsleep, and Anamanaguchi sounded fucking fantastic. In fact, at least in the case of Josh, as well as Pete and his crew, it was some of the best I had ever heard from them.
The highlight of this particular evening?s Bit Shifter set set was easily the almost 15 minute long version of Science City Zero, which is my fave song from the guy btw. He ended it by playing it at half tempo, which gave it a totally different, yet very awesome, feel. I guess the biggest proof of the pudding was the Venezuelan guy from before, who was right up front. Beforehand, he told me that he was becoming a fan of Nullsleep, but when it came to Bit Shifter, he said “I must say, he does not impress me.” But by the end his set, he was a total fan. Though it also needs to be mentioned that chiptunes must absolutely be heard live.
Around the halfway mark of Josh?s performance, everyone began to slowly notice that we were no longer moving. In fact, we had docked! But by the end, we were out to sea once again. The reason for the brief return? Apparently some girl had fallen down the stairs and snapped her ankle or something. I had already told Dave beforehand that I couldn?t swim, and if worse came to worse, I would have to rely on him for survival. Though he had his Spider Man backpack, and I believe it can double as a flotation device.
Second up was Jeremiah. I believe I heard a few new songs, at least ones I haven?t heard many times over. I kept waiting and waiting for Supernove Kiss, my fave track Nullsleep track, and it wasn?t till 30 second in that I realized I was listening to it; he had a different opener that was pretty hawt.
The third and final act of night was Anamanaguchi, sans drummer , Which meant a chance to actually hear the chiptunes this time around! But instead of a NES for that, a laptop was used, with the chip beats emulated. Not only that, it was the most ghettotastic laptop that Dave & I had ever seen, covered up with tape and the such, so we couldn?t help point and laugh. But again, it was good to see Pete again, who earlier in the evening thanked me once again profusely for acquiring his Wii at the Toys R Us launch event. Anyway, the performance, like the other guys, was nice and loud and long and hard and a little bit different. So no complaints here, and the $20 for the ticket was well spent.
By the end, I was famished, as was everyone else. Early on, I made a joke to the others about the idea of ordering pizza, and having it ready and waiting for us by the time the show as over, and wouldn?t you know, others had that same exact idea. Jeremiah suggested a Belgium beer and sausage joint, and the seeds were planted: let?s have dinner, everyone! Unfortunately, as is often the case, next thing you know, we had about 40 people in our posse, some of whom were moving very slow, which drove those that were especially hungry totally nuts. And of course, the Belgium place was closed, which required an on the spot change of plans, which meant figuring out somewhere else that was not only too far away but could also accommodate such a large assembly. The new destination was the Dallas BBQ on St. Mark?s, and as also expected, some people left the crowd, but by the end we still had a super large group that seating everyone would be tricky, plus not everyone really wanted to eat there anyway. And led to the inevitable vote for either staying or moving forward, which took like fifteen times to even get started; I have to admit, it was funny seeing Josh, who is normally so happy go lucky look as if he was going to punch a wall, or somebody in the face, if he didn?t get food, NOW.
Since I was just as tired and starving and getting impatient, primarily because I had to get up early the next morning, I suggested to Jake Mexican, which the guy loves, and us plus his crew all went to San Loco. And within a few minutes, Jeremiah, Olia, Josh, and a few others showed up as well.
I had a burrito and a taco burger, and yuked it up with a guy who was a documentarian that helped to chronicle last year?s Blip Festival. Again, I forget the name, but a super cool dude. He told me how I was in the last shot of the documentary… I was “the screaming guy”, and how him and his collaborators had debated for hours, maybe even days, to either keep me in or not. In the end, I was left on the cutting room floor (or tossed into the Final Cut Pro trash can, whatever you want to call it), but I then noted how the director of 8-bit basically had the same crisis on his hand, and at least in that one, I was kept.
I also discovered that this year?s fest will be at Eyebeam, which no one was familiar with, but I was, and talked about the robot festival that I attended there years back, including the crazy old lady with the instructions on how to turn any toy robot into a killing machine, as well the robot that danced and talking with everyone, which totally blew my mind, enough for me to want to interview it for Nick Mag, till I realized that it was a guy behind the curtains deal. Still embarrassed about that one. I think I also mentioned why I hate Dustin Diamond as well, or maybe it was the Tom Sizemore sex tape? My memory is a bit hazy regarding the tail end of the evening…
Because a stripper was involved, I will not be divulging any identities during the following portion of my report, as to protect the innocent.
It was a friend?s birthday, so the host decided to surprise the birthday boy with a stripper. When I first caught wind of the plan, the host planned on getting a “nerdy girl” for the dude, since that?s what he was into. And because I had experience in finding and securing such a thing, for my own friend?s shindig not too long ago, I offered my help to her. But she said everything was taken care off. Fine?
Fast forward to this Saturday night. The festivities took place at the host?s home. Everyone knew of the stripper, except the birthday boy. It was to be a surprise. The plan was, when she arrived, to distract the dude, and allow her the chance to go upstairs and change in the bathroom. I was chosen to help coordinate such an activity. And when the stripper finally arrived? holy shit, she most certainly was NOT a nerdy girl. Instead of some white, girl next-door type, we got a slutty looking Latino girl who looked as if she?s seen plenty of action in her days. She also had these ridiculous looking fake breasts, the kind that were grossly inappropriate for her frame (they looked like they seriously hurt).
In less then a minute, she was already grinding away at the birthday boy?s groin, and I don?t even think there was music as this point. It was all so rough and automatic. You?d think there would be some build up, or teasing, but no. And the only reason I thought of this was because she had an hour to go, and from the get go, she had already gotten into the thick of things, perhaps too abruptly. Friends of mine couldn?t help but laugh at the spectacle, nor could I help going “Fifty five more minutes of this folks!”
She then spiced things up a bit, by having him lay down on the ground, which at that point, he looked like a corpse, switched to the 69-type position, and then started to pound his face with her groin. The girl was still fully clothed at this point. And I simply went “Fifty minutes to go!”
After awhile she ran out of things to do with the birthday boy, as expected, and moved onto other dudes. I made to stay clear out of her field of vision, as you dragged other dudes into the spotlight. At one point, there was this guy, on his knees, drinking out of a beer bottle that was lodged halfway up her ass. There were girl in attendance who has managed to hang in there, even by this point, to point and laugh, but the ass beer trick was just too much for them, and they all shuffled out. “Forty five minutes to go!”
Near the end, pretty much everyone was bored. And she was still fully clothed! WTF, she was a STRIPPER. Another thing about her is how she was constantly wiping herself off with paper towels. It was good that she was clean and all, but it was still pretty disconcerting. Anyway, to close things out, she got the birthday boy out, and laid him out once more, like a dead body, and then took off her bottom. Holy shit! I couldn?t contain myself and went “Is she gonna do what I think she?s going to do?” At this point, I was in the dining room, which was next to the living room, where the action was going on, and looking on from afar (again, I didn?t want to get involved). Standing straight, her back was to me, and I guess she heard what I said, because she turned around, and looked at me straight in the eyes, in which I saw a combination of dead seriousness and annoyance, then replied with “I am going to do EXACTLY what you think.”
And yet, she didn?t. Instead, she sat down on the dude?s neck, and then poured booze down her ass crack, which ended up in the birthday boy?s mouth. Yes, it was pretty fucking disgusting, but at least she didn?t pee on him (though its really hard to say if that would have been worse).
What a night! Plus he also got a Xbox 360 Elite system, with Bio Shock, and Dead Rising, and that was at least pretty neat! Also at this same party, I tried flirting with some cute Australian exchange student, but got totally cock-blocked by an asshole who did the same exact thing at the last party, years back. But the thing was, he went the extra mile by MARRYING the girl I was trying to chat with, and this was recently. So here?s a newlywed dude fucking up my wrap, yet again. I swear to fucking God, it?s a problem I seem to be having a lot as of late, and it just keeps getting more and more ridiculous!
MK & I went and saw Helvetica, which is a documentary centering on, yes, a font. Believe it or not, it was really good! Granted, one kinda has to be a graphic design geek to even want to think about seeing this movie, but even still, we were both pleasantly surprised that the filmmakers were able to assemble enough resources to create such a movie. Basically, it?s the font that is pretty much everywhere, and traces it?s humble beginnings, and immediately follows its immense impact, with interviews with those that love it, as well as those that hate it. I gotta say, I?ve always been a big fan of font (and if you want to get down to it, the whole “postmodern” type movement), but as the film went on, I actually began to somewhat dislike it! Which I think is the sign of any good documentary, that being it actually makes you reconsider your once staunch support or belief of anything.
I suppose the true highlight of the movie are the various “wacky” graphic designers that pop up. I have a real love/hate relationship with the graphic design world, and a lot of my disdain stems from the designers themselves. Most are total pretentious twats, and I can?t tell you how many people, when they found out I was going to this movie told me in advance “Do NOT go! If dipshit hoodie-macks annoy and ruin the movie going experience for you, then you?ve seen NOTHING yet till you?ve been at a theater completely filled with douchebag designers from Dumbo.” Thankfully that night, it was a relatively calm and annoyance free crowd. But anyway, some of the designers that were interviewed for the movie seemed like cool, or at interesting folks, like the nutty German guy who hated the font, and even if I didn?t agree with where he was coming from, at least he was funny and entertaining. Then you had the stuck up bitch who basically, I shit you not, blamed Helvetica for the Vietnam War, and all conflicts since, including the one that?s going on right now. And you know what? If you see the movie, you will understand her point of view, but still, I hate anyone that over-politicize everything (even though, yes, fonts can be tools of politics as well), and the bottom line was is that she was yet another high on the smell of her own shit graphic designer, one who has connections with SVA (of course).
Again, the movie is actually quite fascinating, though its hardly “the most beautiful documentary I have ever seen!” like some film critics have been saying about it. Plus, as interesting as the subject matter is, the film does run out of steam by the end, primarily when it talks to these two asshats from Willamsburg that has nothing much to say other than “We?re font nerds.” Gee, I had kinda gathered that.
After the movie, MK and I grabbed a late night snack, and she told me about a friend of her?s who just began teaching kindergarten I believe in Harlem. She talked about all the wacky “ethnic” names that parents are coming up these days. One girl is named “Cash-Monay”. Okay. A popular trend these days is for kids to be named after where they were conceived, and apparently, MK?s friend has one boy in his class whose name is, I kid you not, “Cafeteria.” Then there?s the boy originally from Kenya or Uganda, whose name is pronounced differently from how it?s spelled, which on paper looks like “Shit-Head.” Poor, poor kid…
A low-key day overall, but one that saw my e-penis grow yet another inch. First off, this site has just been added to the blog roll over at the newly revamped Multiplayer over at MTV. Thanks again Steve!
I spoke with Joel in the afternoon, who loves to draw all sorts of super heroes and various other folks and bots from film and television, and pass them along to his LiveJournal, and asked for a suggestion as to what to draw next. Which, coming real soon, will my fave B-level Marvel super hero of all time, Darkhawk! Can?t wait!!!
Also got an email from Gibby, the creator of MakeOutClub, in response to my last post, and wouldn?t you know, not only is he a big-time gamer geek, but he?s also a diehard shumps fan!
And not only have I been exchanging emails with Bryan Alvarez of the Figure 4 Weekly, but I also finally got an email from the wrestler that goes by the name Sonic (and who also happens to closely resemble Sega?s very famous mascot). So I might be interviewing the guy in the very near future, hopefully!
Plus, Billy Mitchell once again dropped me a line. He gave me his phone number and wants me to give him a call. I guess to talk about my King of Kong review, more than likely to “set the record straight”…
Oh, and the forums just keeps growing and growing! In the gaming section alone, with have not just a Halo 3 froth thread, but one for Super Smash Bros. Brawl, talk about the new NiGHTS trailer, and news of yet another diehard gamer?s demise.
Then there?s word about a possible Rez 2 and how someone over at Lucasarts finally woke up and smelled the fucking coffee; what should have been a launch title is at last coming? a lightsaber game for the Wii! Though both of those items broke earlier today, but since we?re talking about the forums and all…
Anyway, as for last night, I hung out with Matt Bernier, who?s on a tour of New York, to hang out with friends and soak in the Big Apple one last time before moving off to Portland, Oregon (where all the cool comic kids are migrating to these days). He brought along Hilary, and the three of us had a pretty kick-ass time. We dined at this awesome Japanese sake bar in Time Square that had actually authentic Japanese food! Hilary is totally on the same page on this one; sorry, but when you?ve been to Japan and had the real thing, you?re standards simply become so much higher, and those places on St. Mark?s, as cute as they are, just don?t cut it I?m afraid. I had noodle with chicken and kimchee that was seriously the best Japanese dish since… well, Japan!
Afterwards we strolled around the city, before stopping at Revival (I didn?t know till I ordered drinks that they were also Grassroots fans), and I discovered that Matt B. is also a big fan of Conan the Barbarian as I am, and Hilary was also just as into Who Framed Roger Rabbit growing up as I was too. Plus, we all bitched and moaned about how bad Nickelodeon is these days, I got to do my stupid shpiel about how sitcoms are dead, as well as do my not so flatter impression of the average Harry Potter fan that?s not a little kid, found out that Matt is just as excited over the upcoming Iron Man movie as I am, which is to say a LOT, and how Hilary has already seen Paprika, which I?m pretty jealous about!
I hate the term “nerding it up” since its so overused and abused, but last night, that?s pretty much what we did!