I’ve always loved Polaroid cameras. But apparently Polaroid didn’t love them as much as I did, because they stopped making film in 2008. That was bad news for everyone involved, or at least for me, and when I realized that the film was no longer on every drugstore shelf in the free world, I accepted the inevitable, sold my wonderful Spectra Pro and forgot about the whole thing.
Well, I forgot about it until I watched a documentary called Time Zero: The Last Year of Polaroid Film. That’s when I learned that a magnificent lunatic named “Doc” bought up the equipment in the last working Polaroid film factory somewhere in the Netherlands, put together a team of like-minded visionaries and set out to recreate instant film.
Oh look, he’s back.
It’s been a few months, for those of you who didn’t realize I was gone.
You’re probably thinking I ran out of things to say, but that’s not it. I have a few posts here that I’ve written but haven’t published. So my absence wasn’t due to a lack of ideas.
No, what’s been occupying my time is I’ve been planning a podcast!
Have you seen “The Holstee Manifesto”?
Holstee is a company – oh, sorry, I mean a group of “cyclists, illustrators, surfers, builders, yogis, pizza-lovers, climbers, and creators” – who sell $36 posters (plus $10.54 shipping) and $4 dollar a pop inspirational/aspirational note cards (six to a pack, $10.54 shipping).
So if you need, say, a big green number eight for your wall, and you have $50 in your budget for big green numbers, they can hook you up.
Carol is working on a new book, and in an effort to make it as labor-intensive as possible, she is actually typing out the text on each finished page (hundreds of them) by hand on an old Underwood typewriter.
This makes a clack clack clacking sound throughout the house, that was probably a very familiar sound years ago, but it pretty unusual these days.
Carol made a detailed post about a Miranda July reading we saw last night, but I thought I would add my two cents, because that’s just what I do.
If you’ve ever seen a reading you know that they can easily put you to sleep or make your mind wander to how you need to sweep out under the bed or check the oil on the car. It usually not the reader’s fault. Listening to someone read is just inherently dull.
Well, I don’t know what to say about Wonder Showzen. I recently saw the first five episodes and it’s the funniest thing I’ve seen in a long, long time.
I saw a web site for the show before I saw any episodes, and to me it looked like a smug, oh-so-ironic, bullshit takeoff on Sesame Street. It is a takeoff on Sesame Street, that’s about all I got right.
Well, ain’t that a fine ride…I have in my hot little hands the final proof of the paperback version of Riding Out the Dumb Silence, and I’ll be damned if it isn’t right and tight and ready to go.
I should have a pile of them here ready to ship on July 15th, but smart shoppers pre-order! Just click here and you too can have your very own copy hot off the press.
Yes, it’s true — I have finally received the mythical Peace Card set, a letterpress project that started well over three years ago.
I sent off my contribution in October of 2002, and as you may have read around here somewhere, waiting turned to disbelief, frustration, anger — all of those groovy emotions that make life worth living
My elbow is finally starting to feel better. I tore the main ligament in there while working on this project.
Yes, that injury happened six months ago, and yes, until very recently it hurt every minute of every day, which is very distracting. Now it only hurts part of the day, which is progress, and I may be glimpsing the light at the end of the tunnel.
On Saturday night Carol and I went to the 80 year celebration/show for the Los Angeles Art Association/Gallery 825. These kinds of “300 people in a steaming hot room looking at some good but mostly bad art” shindigs don’t really flip my switch, but all in all it wasn’t bad. I can almost always get a poem or two (or one of these) out of a scene like that.
But after an hour or so we’d both had it, so Carol said to some friends of hers, “Be right back…” and we headed for the car. About half a block from 825 on La Cienega there is a restaurant with an outdoor patio, and as we approached who should amble out the front door but David Johansen, ye olden tymes singer from the New York Dolls, and current bon vivant and man about town.
Welp, the letterpress poem project is finally finished.
It kind of dragged out over a long time, but things tend to do that when you are a lazy procrastinator. If you’re a patron of the weird arts, you can buy one here.
Saw a great documentary last night; Z Channel: Magnificent Obsession.
The Z channel was one of the first pay cable stations in the country, airing interesting films around the clock. Obscure, weird films, director’s cuts, foreign films that no one in America could see.
Z was only available in a small area of west Los Angeles, but the area was/is full of entertainment industry types, and they all watched, which made the channel, and the guy who started it – Jerry Harvey – very influential.
I needed 50 interesting old can or bottle labels for a book project, so I checked eBay. I didn’t think I’d be able to find 50 of the same thing, but lo and behold, eBay came through again, giving me dozens of choices of weird old labels with at least 50 copies of each.
Now that’s great for me, but it begs the question, who the hell else is buying 50 copies of an old can label?! Lots of people, as it turns out. But I cannot, in my most warped and loopy imagination, understand why.
Working on the poem-composed-on-the-spot and printed-in-the-garage project, and so far it’s coming along nicely. First two colors are complete, just need to lay down the black poem text now, which will be the hardest part.
It was weird writing it as I picked up the type. It was hard not to think ahead to the next line, and for the most part I didn’t. I can’t tell right now whether the poem itself is worth a damn, since I can’t read backwards very well. But it seems to have my typical rhythm and outcome, for better or worse.
Been back out in the ink-hole otherwise known as the garage, where my old letterpress lives, quietly mocking me every day because I don’t print much.
Well, I haven’t been feeling the urge since a house painter came some months ago and washed the house and garage with a high pressure hose, blowing all sorts of water, dirt and mud into the garage through the space under the eaves.
A lot of that water and mud and old dead bugs wound up on my 1890’s letterpress and various tons of related equipment. By the time I found out what had happened, the rust was so depressing I just closed the door and ignored it. Wrote it all off as loss.