Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Who's a beatnik?



Finally, after nearly a month of putting it off and wandering through Kerouac's narrative, I finished "On the Road." My roomate, Jerry, asked if it was worth it. I said "yes, cuz now I can say I have read it!" And then he asked who would care about that... I had always supposed that this was the coolest of the cool reads - the hip journey through a beatnik world. Really though, I found the journey to be very sad... and somewhat disturbing how many lives were destroyed by selfishness!

Similar to my foray into Faulkner (quit "The Sound and the Fury" after 100 pages), Kerouac made reading work - I hate that. Finishing it did not bring a sense of completion... more odd wonder at what this book represented to those beatniks who lived their lives in such a manner.



With the freedom to read whatever... I jumped into Bruce Campbell's "Make Love* the Bruce Campbell Way!" I got a fair amount read at the lake on Sunday... and thanks to my braindead choice of going sans-sunscreen, I was able to finish the book yesterday whilst on sick leave. Not nearly as fun as his previous auto-bio (If Chins Could Kill), yet still entertaining in that cheap Campbell way. And yes - I now have a stellar man-tan.



To wrap things up - I have moved into Bret Easton Ellis' "American Psycho." My good friend Mr. Kern was gracious enough to bring along a copy from Seattle. This is my first reading of Ellis' work, and my initial reaction is WOW! I am learning far more about Gucci suits and if brown loafers can be wore with pin stripes than I ever wished. Actually, the character reminds me of my brother in law, Dan. He can sit there and spin on the waredrobe choices of every person at a table (Ellis takes up several pages explaining each piece of material worn... and the designer who made it) and then out of nowhere mention he has a serated knife in his breast pocket and wants to slice up the face of his friend. Hmmmm. Looking forward to more Patrick Bateman fun (and a reviewing of the film after!).



One last note - my sister rules!!! She is currently kicking some Meredith @ss downtown - WAY TO GO KID!!!

Yo

57 comments:

Kern said...

Jed: I think what makes the novel of American Psycho such a stellar acheivement is the way Bateman is so fastidious in all of the aspects of his life, and how seamlessly his disgusting compulsions meld into his everyday thoughts. I think it's this obsessive nature that sets the character up so well for later payoffs, as opposed to the shock of the ensuing carnage.

Personally, my take on it(and I felt it was almost so obvious I'm ashamed to even mention it) was that Bateman is the personification of the class struggle in the 1980's. His wanton disregard for human life is symbolic of the Who Gives A God Damn attitude of the rich and the murders simply serve as a metaphorical vehicle to illustrate the malicious destruction of the lower class. Well, that's what I thought, anyhow.

By the way, did you check out my blog yesterday?

krysta jo said...

Jed-o - sorry to hear about the man tan which caused illness. Also...thanks for the book reviews - thought about reading the first one but after FINALLY finishing Gone With the Wind, I am giving myself a little reading break and working on a few books which are meaningless and mindless before digging into another extreme reading experience.

Good morning Alex.

Kern said...

Hi KJ, how are things?

Damfino said...

Definitely can relate Bateman to the 80's do blow and make dough attitude... but he also has this hatred of racism! So far (only about 100 in), he comes off way dead inside and nihilistic in regard to his friends and fiance.

Ilikeitalot!


KJ - way to finish Mitchell... you gave her more time than she deserved.

Kern said...

Jed, are you saying he is a racist or hates racists?

I think you're starting to get to the interesting parts.

Two words for you: Strawberry Milkshake.

You'll understand soon. Chilling...

Sheriff Officer Greg the Bunny said...

Here are another two words for you Jed.....

















Ass Clown

sheriff out

krysta jo said...

That's the funniest thing I have read today --- ass clown. HA HA.

Yes...it took me over 2 months to finish that damn book. Never again.

Kern said...

Ha ha. Ass Clown...ha ha.

I also like Asshat, though technically that's one word.

Damfino said...

Bateman hates his friends being racist... but he is completely willing to murder. Of course, he does not care if the victim is black or white... so kudos to him for that.

Two words for bunny;




man-tan


"Now look here guys... this is what we call a manitee - tubby one too!"

Kern said...

Another thing I love that really shows his obsessive side are the brief asides about music. Those made me laugh so hard. I think the genius of the book is that it's so absurd but yet so plausible and played so matter of fact. The best satire in my opinion exposes absurdity but without making a big show of winking to its audience.

urnotme said...

What's up?

urnotme said...

A couple things:

Jed, I was the one who said who asked if it was worth it and who the f cares if you read it or not. Give me some effin credit! Just joking.

Also, what's wrong with me picking on you because you're a dork.

Man tan? How's picking up men working for you?












The sheriff is the man.

urnotme said...

What's with everyone taking off when I show up?

Do I stink?

Kern said...

I'm still here. Just distracted slightly. Probably Jed's Man Tan.

urnotme said...

Where the hell is today's review?

Kern said...

Well, it will most likely be up after lunch. I was researching the cost of getting my last art piece turned into a giclee print. Which is kind of like a lithograph. I didn't realize how expensive it is, but I do now. And boy is it. Just one on Fine Art Watercolor paper is going to cost 96 plus shipping when they finish, if I get it done. I bet it will look pretty nice though.

Kern said...

Also, I figured this week's topic may not lure that many people anyway, so I thought waiting to write it until today would probably be ok.

urnotme said...

$96? Jeez, I hope it's pretty big. (That's what she said.)

Ok, that's cool. I will look for the review later.

P.S. You seriously need to check out the new Hot Hot Heat. I'm sure you'd be down. It's good stuff. I did download bandages and i liked it a lot, but this new stuff is much better.

I'm out.

Kern said...

Urnotme: Do come back to Listen, etc. for a new review later.

I believe the size of the print is something like 24 X 36. Or close to that. It's kind of an expensive process in general from what I gather. I think this place seems like they may do the best work for the money(8 color inks instead of 6 for example) and relatively quick turnaround. The other problem is then I have to get it framed.

Kern said...

Oh and as for Hot Hot Heat. Still don't like them, I am afraid. They're playing here, and I think my friend might be going though.

I did however manage to score Sigur Ros tickets. I'm pretty excited about that. I've got other shows I'm debating such as the Arcade Fire and seeing the original lineup of Dinosaur Jr. which would be sweeeeet!

Damfino said...

I think I hate urnotme.

Hmmm... wait...

yup - hate him.

krysta jo said...

No hating on the blog....urnotme is hilarious...everyone has a right to their opinions and especially their funny comments!!

Kern said...

Jed: Which comment brought on such hatred? You never answered my earlier question, by the way, about whether you read yesteday's review or saw the new art...

Damfino said...

Not that hating urnotme needs defending but...

"Also, what's wrong with me picking on you because you're a dork.

Man tan? How's picking up men working for you?"

he is not nice.

I saw the art kern... very warholesque... have not been through the review.

krysta jo said...

I think everyone on this blog is a dork, but that's ok because dorky is better than boring.

Damfino said...

Oh - Kern! I almost lost it when Bateman dropped his love of Eddie Murphy's moving "Party all the time" whilst being upset with the hardbody who would not take his drink tickets.

KJ - we need to pressure Dan into wearing boots on the Dukes night out!! Or at least get him in a cowboy hat!

krysta jo said...

That would be awesome - I didn't know Dan and Holly were joining us!!!

Damfino said...

Oh yeah... I think they are.

Can you teach us to 2-step?

krysta jo said...

I am only able to 2-step when I have a most fantastic dance partner who is really good at leading. So...we'll see. :)

Kern said...

I only know one step: Stepping up to the bar for more strong drink.

Damfino said...

"I'll take the wheel Howard!"

Dude - she never took the wheel!!!!!

Damfino said...

We are definitely starting off with a round of shots... then no dancing will happen without a makers or J&B in my hand.

Kern said...

Speaking of Juke joints, guess who I might go see in September? One hint: It's a band I reviewed and that Jed seems to like to listen to quite a bit...

krysta jo said...

Shots?? I love shots...

Kern said...

I love shots too. I might go see the Black Keys. The problem is that they are on the same night as this electronic group from Norway called Royksopp on the same night.

What's a music geek to do?

Damfino said...

I knew you made mention that they had a concert coming up ... very jealous.

Did I tell you that they had a tune on Rescue me season 1?

Kern said...

No, I didn't hear that. But that's cool. So you think I should go?

Damfino said...

Definitely... I gotta know how these guys present themselves live!

krysta jo said...

Shots?? I love shots...

Kern said...

Ha ha. It's not 4 yet, KJ. Isnt' that usually when you get to do shots?

BTW-New music review just went up at Listen, listen, etc.

krysta jo said...

Yes 4 oclock shots but since I am completely slacking, it looks like I'll be at work a while tonight. YUCK.

Kern said...

Bummer. I'll go home and have a shot of Bushmills for ye.

krysta jo said...

Gosh...thanks!

Kern said...

Tis nothing, my friend. Though I do need to curb a bad new habit I picked up. Damned energy drinks. Evil! Evil!

Deit Heimley said...

And I'm back. So sorry to bail on the Kern fest. I really felt bad, but it was my birthday weekend, and I had a sort of surprise party thrown for me. i was then on vacation for a bit -- got a great tan though -- and NOT the man-tan type.

OK. On books -- ignore Kerowac. In fact ignore the whole beatnik period. It is really a cheap imitation of everything that happened in the Jazz area -- only the drugs were better.

I think it's funny that you can't relate to the Faulkner or Kerowac, but you are relating to American Psycho when the three authors were really talking about the same thing. The American expirience is one of selfishness and greed. I could go on for a while on this whole line naming other books from the 20s that are very close to American Psycho in tone if not graphic violence.

I wonder if you relate to AP better because you relate to the culture of the 80s more than the culture of the 20s or 60s.

krysta jo said...

Damn the energy drinks. My sister is a Diet Rock Star drinker. I think it's gross so I stick with the stomach-eating Diet Coke.

Kern said...

Yeah, I try to go sugar free on those things if possible, but today I was dragging arse and needed something. I bought a regular Rock Star from the Vending machine. Bad Kern. It's got the same amount of empty calories as soda, which I have steadfastly avoided for so long. I don't want to get all doughy again. Well, not that I'm not still slightly doughy. But not as bad as I was.

Deit Heimley said...

Kern. Just flipped and read the review. Spot on. I agree and I know of the Walker who is not a Walker. I have to be in the mood though. Can you say heavy?

But more importantly, what medium do you use in your art? I really like the piece. I could comment, but won't here to avoid cross-blog confusion.

Oh, and a side comment. In 2001 I realized that Hesse had been right when he predicted the end of all western culture by the end of the century. The stockmarket crash was also the sign to me to step out of the continued fall of western civilivation. Since then, I have been living in other cultures and times (at least as far as my music, film, and literary concerns go).

Not that this relates to anything, just an appreciation of the Kern not limiting his musical appreciation the banal crap being pushed today. (There are a few notable exceptions to this hyperbole, but only a few)

But if you are still around Kern, I am curious ... you seem to be pretty heavily based in the American pop/rock scene (with a few English exceptions) and I am wondering if you do now, or ever have made any forays into the world music scene?

Damfino said...

Deit you grand b@stard... I am out today... but talk more tomorrow.

I am a victim of the 80's... absolutment!

Sheriff Officer Greg the Bunny said...

The sheriff is a mean 2 stepper and can lead with the best of them...black boots are in the closet and awaiting instructions...


tickets?!? I love tickets....

Kern said...

Deit,

Hi. Thanks for the compliments. My intro to Walker was a strange one, through a mixtape of an ex-coworked who showed me a whole side of music I'd never seen before. When you say World music, what do you mean exactly? I've got some interesting stuff, like African Funk Compilations on Strut Records, and I'm very, very into foreign film scores as well as British and Italian sound library musics. I am also a fan of Bossa Nova. I did a review a while back with Astrud Gilberto. It's interesting to note that there are a fair amount of Italians that are Bossa infatuated. Nicola Conte sort of spearheaded the Italian Bossa movement if you will, and his Schema Records produces some fantastic stuff. You may know all of this already, in which case I apologize for the retread. But yeah, I go kind of global. Some of my favorite electronic music is from other countries, especially stuff on the German label Compost.

krysta jo said...

Sheriff - you may be the only member of law enforcement that I will like. Hot damn...two-steppin'.

Kern said...

KJ, still there?

urnotme said...

Queen you still there?

QueenB said...

yeah Im here now

QueenB said...

Hello??

QueenB said...

you can get me at girl414 if you ever get bk online. Otherwise ttyl.