San Francisco in 4 pictures

March 31, 2009
A beautiful day at one of the most important bays in the world

A beautiful day at one of the most important bays in the world

A view of the city from Alcatraz

A view of the city from Alcatraz

On the way back from Alcatraz at sunset

On the way back from Alcatraz at sunset

a mural on the side of a building down in the Mission

a mural on the side of a building down in the Mission



March 21, 2009

Today was fantastic.  I was awake at 6am, watched TV for 2 hours, showered and then drove down the hill with Carole and had some coffee and chilled out at her store until my friend Owen could pick me up.  I met him in Amsterdam in June 2006 and he also lived in Freiburg for awhile too but he’s from Berkely. He took me to a small memorial on a hill where there was a big fire in 1991, it had a great view of the Bay.  Then we drove around Berkeley and by the Claremont Spa and Resort. We parked the car and walked around for awhile, even getting to a bench built into a tree overlooking the Cal Berkeley football stadium and San Fran and the Golden Gate Bridge in one sweeping view.  Then we walked down to Telegraph, got some Mexican food in a place celebrating its 50th year in business, I visited two thrift stores and bought a cowboy shirt in each one and then took the bus down to Rockridge where Carole picked me up and brought me home where I am drinking my second Pyramid Apricot Ale and relaxing.

Capitalism and Che

March 17, 2009

Che Guevara I’m sure would find this world a place rife with desire for revolution, though maybe he’d have to learn Arabic to be as influential as he was to Latin America.

this guy is the current head of the AIG Financials Dept.

this guy is the current head of the AIG Financials Dept.

One of the men whose culpability in the current global financial mess is more than circumstantial is at a cocktail party wearing a Che Guevara t-shirt.  Probably the most whored copyright infringement marketing bullshit of all time, showing a man who was a revolutionary who was against the very thing that that AIG is doing, it’s like the new version of having the dude’s head in a jar on your desk.  You are quite possibly a huge capitalist swine wearing a shirt of the revolutionary.  Two different directions for civilization, that financial jackass or Che, but wasn’t there ever something in between?  I live in Europe, I’m pretty sure is.  America’s polarization in one image…


March 15, 2009

I went down in the cellar today to look for some clothes I may have put down there.  They were gone, most likely given away in a fit of shedding.  While down there, I started to get into boxes that had not been opened for some time, with everything having a more or less mildewy smell.  Stuff was balancing precariously on boxes on boxes.  I opened one box that was another another box  and found a box of bags.  There were two backpacks, including my backpack from Bluetorch from 2000, an old workbag I hadn’t used in 2 years, a friend’s yellow leather purse and then a forlorn-looking black leather bag.

it smells like cellar

it smells like cellar

can you see the waterstain on the bottom and the paint on the top left?

can you see the waterstain on the bottom and the paint on the top left?

I would love to repair the paint flecks, the waterstain the the midewy smell? Anyone have some advice?

While down there, I also found a small book that is the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution about the size of a wallet with about a 1/4 of the width.

I need to go back down into the cellar one day (that means after San Francisco) and decide to throw a lot of stuff away.  But maybe I’ll wait, who knows?  Right now the bag is hanging out the window hoping to get 2 years of mildew out of its body as much as possible.

There is a microcosm of what I have been thinking about. Taking what I already have or can find and do something with it.  I keep ordering new books but I have at least a dozen I haven’t read (but I will forgive myself this sin because books are a non-negotiable part of my life, gotta have ’em), and this bag.  This bag is more or less trash right now because it was left by my roommate who doesn’t live here anymore.  It’s been abandoned and I have rescued it from the perpetual dying scene of property in the cellar.

It is in bad shape but should be usable.  It could be a smart-looking bag if I am able to repair it.  I won’t do anything until after San Francisco but I have a 3-week period between coming back from San Francisco and a good portion of my work starting so I might have to get some special things accomplished then, like:

  • make packets for the universities so it’s like they have 70% of the material on the first day of class
  • repair the leather bag
  • plan an exhibition, probably for late May or late June
  • clean out the cellar
  • rearrange my room (this is impulsively being written down but perhaps some small changes could be made)
  • get a lot of work on The Newropean done

You see what I mean? It’s about being productive. I love wasting time on the internet and quite often it’s a perfect way to spend one’s time, especially if you want to read news which I do.  I have many directions my life can go and the thing is, I like it right where it is but as you get older, it’s get harder to float in place.  Inertia has a way or remaining a constant variable.  However, it’s a very fluid movement so the slightest bump or adjustment sends me in a decidedly new direction.

Five things

March 12, 2009

inspired by:

Five things in my bag

  • hackeysack, though I don’t use it nearly enough
  • a Guatemalan worry doll
  • train schedule from Freiburg to Loerrach
  • my mp3 player
  • a book on Shakespeare in 1599

Five favourite things in my flat

  • my hammock
  • my big European map from 1983
  • enlarged photographs of some of my travels
  • my machete
  • washing machine

Five things I really like at the moment

  • listening to Howard Stern
  • Watching the Daily Show
  • goat cheese
  • hammocking
  • my growing tie collection

Five things I have always wanted to do

  • find a way to travel and write and photograph for living
  • start a family, though I’m not in a rush
  • eat Mexican food everyday for a week
  • visit every country in Europe
  • Be fluent in Spanish and German

International Women’s Day

March 8, 2009

Hey ladies,

Thanks for being you.  You can be frustrating as hell but there wouldn’t be us to complain about it if you ladies weren’t here in the first place to bring us into the world.  Thanks!

The Rumble in the Jungle

March 6, 2009

There’s a culture/sports management university in town where I was a constant presence for about 3 years 2003-6, teaching American and British history. I haven’t worked there much the past the two years because of lack of enrollment but I had a coffee with my Danish boss today at McDonalds (with my free coffee cards that I’d found at a bar a few weeks ago).  She offerred me some work for the next two Wednesdays at a better than normal rate.  What do I have to teach?

Sports in the United States during the 1970s and their historical context.  I’m going to talk about the 1972 Olympics where Mark Spitz won 7 medals (relevant because of Michael Phelps today) and the Israeli athletes who’d been kidnapped and killed by Palestinians (relevant for the Middle East situation today).  I’m also going to talk about The Rumble in the Jungle, one of Don King’s first promoted boxing matches, taking place in Kinshasa, Congo in 1974, a big win for Muhammad Ali over George Foreman (relevant for Ali being stripped of the title for refusing the draft and also for the Foreman Grill making Foreman richer and more famous after his boxing career) and…well, I’m not sure yet what else but doesn’t that sound like an interesting way to make money?  You’re looking at 175 euros for 6 hours of work over two weeks.  There are 8-10 students who are in their early 20s.  My boss said they are daft and uninterested but I can swallow that for two weeks for a little extra money that I can put right into our Israel trip in less than 3 months.  Woohoo!