A dad and his daughters, loving life in New York City

Monday, June 19

mymix 6.20

i make a new on-the-go mix just about every morning. here's what i'm listening to, shuffled, today...

afi: miss murder
paul oakenfold: faster kill pussycat
the walkmen: emma, get me a lemon
hot chip: and i was a boy from school
sonic youth: jams run free
elf power: an old familiar scene
bloc party: positive tension
brian eno: the true wheel*
mobius band: close the door
ghostface killah/ne-yo: back like that
film school: like you know
the rakes: open book
arab strap: if there's no hope for us
babyshambles: albion
red hot chili peppers: dani california
james blunt: high
deerhoof: twin killers
super furry animals: foxy music
ladytron: destroy everything you touch
the postal service: there's never enough time
gnarls barkley: who cares?**
sia: sunday

* remember in high school how sometimes you felt like you were absolutely at the center of the universe, and for a brief moment it seemed like everything was all aligned, and your life was going to work out fine, and you couldn't believe how good it felt to to be so comfortable and relaxed? i felt that in gabrielle and melissa's room back in 1980, fall of my senior year, as i sat on their bed and watched them dance and sing along to this song.
** still totally the disc of the moment. usually two or three songs make it onto the daily mix.


Sunday, June 18

hudson beach

the ever-gorgeous and razor-sharp dglass once told me the secret to making the weekend feel longer: go out friday night. as always (except for sometimes) she's absolutely right... especially, it seems, on the weekends when bo and co are with me. so this past friday, with no movies around that the three of us could agree on, scoboco went down to hudson beach to hang out, see the sunset, and watch co master the rings course.

hudson beach--located at approximately 105th street in riverside park, down all the way next to the highway--features the following: two "traveling rings" apparati (a cross between gymnast rings and monkey bars... ten rings strung across a sand pit; you swing from one to the next to the next) one adult-sized, one for kids; a beach volleyball setup; the hudson beach cafe, which cooks up servicable burgers and fries; kenny scharf lollipop heads gazing down from the fence near the highway; music from the live band that's usually playing at the cafe; lots of happy upper west side families doing the same thing we were doing... soaking up those beautiful summer's-just-beginning vibes.

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Saturday, June 17

taxi in a hole

well we haven't really done much new and scobocable this week... but co and i did see THIS on our way home from rockaway beach today:

i have no clue how it happened, and we felt bad for the driver, who seemed appropriately distraught... but i admit i couldn't help but chuckle when several guys jumped in and tried to lift the whatever-1000-pound cab into the air!

WOW! you were awesome, dudes!


Monday, June 12

summer movies: the beginning

here's a quick look at what we've seen since memorial day...

cars: co and i went last friday night, fingers crossed. and though my overall feelings are as mixed as the reviews, one thing's certain: this is the most amazing-LOOKING movie i've ever seen... i literally can't believe that these stunning natural landscapes, and breathtaking car races, and the way water splashes and dust flies, and dozens of other small details, were created in a computer. astonishing.

unfortunately, the storytelling--jokes, characters, narrative drive--doesn't keep up with the technology. i mean, it was entertaining enough, and we definitely laughed out loud a few times, and it was kind of touching in the end, but we agreed that it was all just a little too pat: nothing new, very safe, very mechanical. and even though all the recognizable voices do a nice job of humanizing things, there's just something not terribly appealing about a world where there's no animals, no people... just vehicles. i loved co's comment, as we were walking out: "imagine the environment there! they'd have such bad global warming!"

• an inconvenient truth: speaking of which, as al SO-wish-he-weren't-robbed gore makes clear in this intelligent, lively, devastating, witty (yes, witty), inspiring lecture cum movie, there is almost zero controversy within the scientific community about the facts and horrific effects of global warming. in the media, in corporate boardrooms, in political circles that get money from organizations who like to keep things the way they are, yes, there are lots of people who are willing to try to confuse the issue. if YOU want clarity, there's no excuse not to see this movie, and even less of an excuse not to change your behavior afterwards.

• x-men iii: if you're a fan of the first two, you've probably aready gone. sorry. if you're a fence-sitter, may i suggest seeing something else. i mean, there are several really fun well-choreographed fight scenes here, and a number of cool mutant effects, but the awe and the intimacy and the individual growing pains that characterized the previous chapters are gone, and i became absolutely disengaged each time the action stopped.

• the da vinci code
: do i really need to weigh in on this one? given the terrible reviews, my expectactions were looooooow, and so was surprised to find myself: 1. getting caught up in the unraveling of the puzzle (yes i had read the book, but years ago, and didn't really remember a thing); 2. enjoying watching tom hanks, though i wished he wasn't so damn dour--you're on the adventure of a lifetime, dude! have some freakin fun!--and especially ian mckellen; 3. thinking, yup, if i'm here watching this, it is totally summertime.


Saturday, June 10

rack and soul

bo's away this weekend, so scoco hooked up with dglass for some chilly soho wandering (the staircase at the new longchamp is kind of disappointing in person), some hanging with e and pablito, and then uptown to 109th and broadway to check out rack and soul, which was opened about a month ago by seasoned soul food pro from harlem.

dinner was totally delicious. everything: the crispy fried chicken, the tender baby back ribs, the collard greens, the buttery mashed potatoes, the sticky mac and cheese, the baked beans... all more than lived up to my expectations. the service was super friendly and speedy (they obviously don't cook-to-order, which is fine for this kind of food); the vibe relaxed; the music lame (really? the best mix they could come up with was some kind of 80s greatest hits complilation?); we were seated right away, but the place felt happily crowded; and the prices reasonable, especially co's $4 kid-sized portion of ribs and two sides.

we're definitely going back, maybe even for bo's birthday in a couple of weeks.

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Sunday, June 4

nellie mckay at joe's pub

homeboy over at b.a.t. hooked me up with this one: every sunday at 11:30 until at least june 18, nellie mckay will be performing at joe's pub (on lafayette, right off astor place). dglass and i went last sunday with gallery master eric, and the show was absolutely terrific. if you don't mind staying up late on school night, i'd highly recommend seeing this off-the-charts charming and clever and cute and talented young woman while the chance is here. (or you could also pay $100 or whatever to see her in three penny opera...)

nellie's delivery of her smart, rapid-fire lyrics, her show-tune sensibility, her instinctively theatrical nature--all of which, frankly, can get a little tiresome when listyening at home--is all a joy to watch and hear live. several times she actually forgot her place (if you're familiar with her songs, that's totally understandable) but recovered in endearing fashion. her politics are impeccably liberal; her fire and conviction admirable; and though some of her targets--marriage, suburbia--are a tad immature (or, i should say, fit her age, which is like 20), overall i couldn't help thinking how proud i would be if she were, say, my niece.

the show lasted about 90 minutes, most of which had her seated at the piano, though she did get up and play the almost-ukelele for a song or two. her between-song banter was funny and totally charming (have i called her charming already? well, she is.) oh and definitely reserve a table "for dinner." they won't make you buy any food (just a two drink minimum, which they didn't even hold us to), and you'll get to sit. but even with a rez, show up early. you don't want one of the two tables behind the piano.

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Friday, June 2

rockaway beach

scoboco's always gone to long beach for our day trips to the ocean. you know: the lirr, walk five or six blocks, crowded but perfectly fine beach, takes about 50 minutes one way (not counting getting to penn station, and doing the waiting/staring at the track board thing), costs $17 for adults for train tickets and beach admission. definitely a nice day; definitely worth it a few times each summer.

but over memorial day weekend dglass suggested checking out rockaway... she had gone out there years ago; i had never been. and we had a great day.

getting there couldn't be easier: take the a train, which is a total express, to broad channel where you can either stay on and go to far rockaway, or do what we did and switch to the shuttle (picks you up on the same platform) and then get off at any of the "beach" stops. we tried beach 105, and it was perfect. the trip lasts less than hour from west 4th street, and the boardwalk is pretty much right there when you get off the train.

the beach was basically the same as long beach (maybe the sand wasn't quite as... sandy... but it was fine), there were FAR fewer people in our area than i would have expected; the water looked ok, there was public bathroom, and a little snack bar, and there was a deli near where you get off the train. plus you get that cool, slightly disorienting sensation of taking the subway to the beach.

yes, you will be singing the song all day. but i always get old school snoop dogg in my head when i go to long beach, so that's pretty much a wash, too.

nice to have options. this city is so amazing.

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Thursday, June 1

dance: a midsummer night's dream

another HUGE night for scoboco! in what had to be the most high-energy, the most raucous, the absolute smiley-est dance performance of the season, co's fourth grade teamed up with the national dance institute for a one-night-only presentation of a midsummer night's dream.

once a week since last fall three ndi teachers--a music director, a choreographer, and arthur, their leader--have worked with co and her classmates on this broad interpretation of shakespeare's comedy. the hour-long show was highlighted by the enthusiastic "dance of titania and her fairies," set in the forest and featuring a pack of kindergarteners as wild animals; a very meta number in which shakespeare himself (or, in this case, herself) makes an appearance and the kids run through some famous quotes from the entire canon; and a gorgeous finale, with all the kids singing a musical version of the "if we shadows" speech that ends the play. the music was lively, the children beautiful and beaming, the audience roaring with cheers.

it filled me with such joy to see you so happy up there, co-beanie, and i love you very much.

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