Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Go see it

Just saw "Dark Knight", the Batman movie.

It's one of the five best movies I've ever seen. The monologues on truth and justice intertwined with Heath Ledger's immortal performance makes for a beautiful piece of legendary proportions.

Wow. Just wow... and I'm not even a comic book nerd.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Shockey and Estelle

I am so glad that that weeping, whiny bitch Jeremy Shockey has been sent to New Orleans where he can flood them with his tears instead of his touchdowns, just like he did in NY. Good riddance.

On another note, it upsets me that Estelle Getty died. I got so many text messages today from assorted people about this because they all know that I've watched the Golden Girls since I was a little kid (thanks Grandma).

Estelle, we will always remember you as that tough talking Sigi grandma that you were. Hope God greets you with open arms... and we know that if he doesn't, you'll smack the shit out of him.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

"In the spirit of the Irish people, Osama bin Laden, you can kiss my royal Irish ass" - FDNY Firefighter Michael Moran


The Empire State building was red, white, and blue last night.

When I was a little kid, I remember walking by the World Trade Centers with my grandmother, and asking her why they had those massive cement planters in front of the lobby, taking up most of the entrance.

"That's so you can't drive a car with a bomb in it through the building."

I was not a stupid kid, even at that age; it's arguable that actually, I was smarter than. There were no naive thoughts about why someone would want to do such a thing... I knew politics. I knew war. I knew terrorism.

But also, what I knew, was that they didn't happen in America. I knew bombs went off in places like Israel, or Croatia, Chechnya. I didn't know it would happen to us.

As I looked across the river last night, again feeling that cool breeze come off the water... sometimes it's hard for me to comprehend that 9/11 really happened. It's hard to look at that skyline that I've lived next to my whole life and realize that something like that truly went on, and that I saw it, an 18-year-old kid smoking a cigarette in his pickup truck with friends, listening to the radio, wondering if we were going to war...

It still brings tears to my eyes.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Hoboken is Decadent and Depraved (Version 2.0)

The night is oppressively hot, and the only thing that keeps it tolerable is the winds coming in off of New York Harbour. The heavy bass of the drums land in time as Santana's guitar notes drift out of the bar and ride the currents; whoever sings "Maria, Maria" is serenading the streets of this town that is so often packed with wandering masses of overdressed men and women but is tonight a ghost town; empty, echoing, hazy, a reminder that the state forgets everything but the Shore during the Glorious Fourth.

View of NY from across the river...

"She don't believe in shootin stars, but she believe in shoes and cars...."

She is about my height in her heels, wearing a black dress with her long blond hair strewn about. She is cute, but my friend's girlfriend tells me that she would be ugly with short hair; evidently this is a measuring stick for good looking women.

All I really want to do in this town is go to a damn rooftop bar, because I'd imagine that drinking on a rooftop would be entertaining (at least as long as I stayed away from the edge). Of course, that doesn't seem to be happening on this night.

It's been about a month and a half since I've been drunk and my tolerance is lower than ever. The beers hit me quick and furious as shots of Jameson come over the top, doing damage like check hooks from an infighter. One great curved, wall is tiled in gold and looks like it should be covered by a waterfall; cone-shaped lights with an oriental feel hang lazily over the bar, bathing the bartenders in red lights.

She walked up to my buddy immediately after we got there, and started her game. It's a street hustle on a higher class; she flips her hair, twirling it around her neck, bats her eyelashes. She talks to him for a while, and I'm momentarily jealous. Ten minutes later he wanders back over.

"Fuckin girl came out and asked me, 'You gonna' buy me a drink?'"

"You did I guess?" I ask.

"Yea. What the hell am I gonna' say? That's like ten bucks for one of them, but I had to."

Later on it looks like his ten bucks might get him somewhere, as he's sitting on a couch talking to her, trying to work his way in.

Again, he appears after twenty minutes this time.

"Said she had to go home," he says. "Says she was a model. Had a photoshoot early tomorrow."

"On a Sunday huh?"

"Yea... she was full of shit. That's OK though, cause I was an accountant tonight."

---- --- -- ---- --- - -- - - - -

This town is remarkable; I bitch about it but I love it, and in all my hypocritical glory I will end up living here at some point. A writer for the New York Sun once wrote a series of articles on the Mafia violence that owned the Hoboken waterfront, leading to the movie that changed the way people perceived "corruption".

Line after line of old factories still sit here, strewn amongst the row houses that have become some of the most expensive property in the state. Bars, restaurants, and expensive stores line the streets during the day, and the lights go dim for the drinking crowds that rule the nights. All of this, while the heavy multicolored lights of New York City loom across the river, the eyes of the great bustling metropolis with blinking bulbs that brawl with the darkness.

People come out to this town to see each other, to be seen, like celebrities do at a Laker's game. Not that anyone knows anyone, mind you- it's certainly not the kind of place where you see old high school friends... Bruce Springsteen does not sing about Hoboken bars, Kanye West does. Things like that used to grate on me, but that anger isn't there anymore. I have much to lose, and by getting blind drunk at town bars, I'm only setting myself up for the inevitable arrest on a multitude of charges.

It doesn't mean who I am has changed at all, mind you. I'll always laugh at girls like that one who conned my buddy out of a drink, and any man that wears capris is going to get a "Where's the flood, asshole?" comment from me; it's my nature.

Regardless of that, the thing I really like, and cannot find anywhere else except for NYC, is the feeling I get when I'm there. It's one of the few times that my overactive mind never feels like it's missing something. I'm across the river from perhaps the greatest city in the world, and likely with some very interesting people. I'm in good bars with beautiful women, and the world is, for however fleeting, at my feet.

This has been important to me in the last few months, because there has been a nagging emptiness that was there in heavy formality last night. I've dealt with it by sobering up, which is a hell of a change for me... but feeling decent physically has still left me hurting. It's not a straight depression- no, I'm too lively for that.

What it is is a strange existential feeling that simply says, "Is this it?"

I don't have a job so much as a career now, and all my sights are set on that burning city across the river. I've got a car that's far nicer than anything I should own, I get a decent amount of women, and I have no true worries of any sort... but it's missing. The only time I feel good is when I'm lifting or boxing (my only respites in this troubling world) and even those have had to take the backseat since I separated my shoulder.

Other than that, I'm just sitting and wondering, constantly, what I'm doing, where I'm going, how my life is going to be. I hear US Census projections for 2040, and realize that I'll be 56 then. A year older than my grandfather when he died, 34 years older than Ryer when he died. Throw 20 more years on that, and I probably won't be around anymore. Someone will then likely be bitching and moaning about how badly I fucked'em up by dying.

For months, there have been no answers. Drunk, sober, from every height to every depth, there have been no answers. Not in the grimiest strip clubs of the Newark ghetto to the swankiest Hoboken bar, not from the hilly highlands of West Milford to the sand at the Shore. Nothing.

I blew the cigarette smoke out through my mouth in the shape of an "O" when I was on the streets... big holes in the center of the smoke..

I'm assuming this feeling is the reason that women by three thousand dollar purses and guys buy Maserati's.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Red, White, And Bruce- The Campaign to Get the Boss Elected to Governor

BELMAR, N.J.— What started off as typical day at the beach nearly ended in horror for a Bayonne couple and their young daughter, if not for the heroics of one man who put his life on the line to make sure the young girl was safe.

27-year-old Andrea Calamazarotti came to Belmar on Monday with her daughter, Nikki, and her boyfriend of three-and-a-half weeks, Tony, to celebrate, amongst other things, the Fourth of July holiday.

“Well, you know, me and Anthony have been dating for almost a month, and I thought that maybe we should do something special to celebrate…this is my longest relationship in a long time and I wanted to go out, you know? It’s been tough, because he got laid off from the lumber yard a couple of months ago, and my job at the tanning salon has barely been getting me enough money to get a babysitter and go get drunk on a Thursday! Can you imagine?” the blonde Andrea said, snapping her gum incessantly as she talked to the Belmar Sun.

Sure enough, where do all hardworking or laid-off New Jerseyans go when they’re down on their luck? The Jersey shore. And so Andrea and Tony loaded up Tony’s mid-80’s Lexus and drove down to Belmar to enjoy a few days of sun and fun on the beach.

However, the fun almost ended abruptly when the ocean’s dangerous currents reminded beachgoers that while the Shore may be fun, attention must always be paid, especially to little children.

Tony, who is a solid 230 lbs. at nearly 5‘4” and for some reason shows heavy acne scarring on his shoulder and back area, was incredulous at the events, even taking off his sunglasses to look at reporters at one point.

“So, uh, Michelle went to go get me a beer and left me with the kid. I mean, I mean Andrea. Andrea went to get me a beer… ahh, you’re not gonna’ print that right?”

“Anyway, I mean, can you believe they don’t serve beer on the beach? You gotta’ walk all the way the fuck down to Point Pleasant to that place… that, uh… Tiki Bar! Yea, that’s it, to get a beer on the beach. Anyways, I’m smoking a cigarette, watchin’ the kid play in the water and shit, and I go to bury the butt in the sand cause you know they can give you a ticket for that shit, when all of a sudden I hear screaming. So I figure some bitch may in trouble, so I take my shirt off and run down the beach looking for who’s screaming.”

Although no one is quite sure where Tony actually ran too, Andrea came back to her towel and Glamour magazine only to find the lifeguard lamenting at water’s edge as Nikki was getting swept into the ocean.

“I asked her, ‘What the fuck? Why aren’t you going in to save her? And the lifeguard, she just said she forgot her orange floating thing and that without that she couldn’t do anything because she didn’t actually know how to swim.”

The lifeguard, when questioned later, declined to comment, saying only, “They only teach us how to blow whistles- what the fuck do you people want from me?”

“But that’s when HE came,” says Andrea, a bright light appearing in her dull eyes. “It was Bruce Springsteen. He pulled right onto the beach in a red Ford Roadster, and asked me, really calmly, if there was a problem.”

“I told him, ‘Oh my gawd, my daughter’s caught in a riptide’. I pointed out to her, but by the time I did he was already in the water.”

Witnesses allege that the Mr. Springsteen swam in boots and jeans approximately two-and-a-half miles out to sea in order to save the poor wailing girl and swam with her back to shore. Some also say that he managed to grab a wounded seagull that was later found to have the popular candy pop-rox in its stomach, and at least one observer has said that he pushed a stuck party boat off a sandbar.

“I don’t care about any of that. He brought her back to me,” says the thankful Andrea, who now holds her daughter close at all times, having bought one of those retractable children’s leashes that West Virginians are prone to use.

“I’ll never let her go again. Bruce, you’ve got my vote.”

Tony has not yet been found, but it has been alleged that a fight at the nearby bar “Bar B” later that night was started by a short, shirtless, Italian looking man with bad tribal tattoos who was wearing sunglasses.

Although the local Irish cops say that this description has them looking for a “needle in a haystack of needles” in the words of Sgt. Cahill, it is possible that there is a connection between the two events.

Local Republicans have said that it is likely that this was simply a publicity stunt, and have even questioned if Ms. Calamazarotti was paid to let her daughter out of her sight. They have also questioned the existence of “Tony” at all.

Local Democrats were quoted as calling them “assholes.”