Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Waiting For Some Action

I swear it’s like they’re trying to kill me. On purpose.

Riding my bike home tonight, I was riding in the bike lane on 21st near Broadway. A guy in a minivan opened his door (like you do). As I usually do when people do that (look in your mirrors before you open the door! Please!), I dodged, but it was just too close. I got half way around, but he finished opening his door into my leg. As one can guess, I ended up skidding sideways into a car sitting in (mercifully unmoving) traffic and ruining my back wheel. Which, just so we’re keeping score, means that I’ve completely replaced my wheel set on this bike.

In an unusual stroke of luck, there was a car with a pair of policemen in it sitting two cars behind the one that I was pushed into, so they saw the whole thing. In an even more unusual stroke of luck, those policemen were sympathetic to me. The upshot of this was that the cops were talking to the guy that doored me before I even picked myself up off the pavement.

I had plenty of time while they were going through the motions of reporting an accident to check over my bike, and as far as I can tell, the only thing that got damaged was my back wheel. Since the whole show is going on their insurance, I will probably be able to get the wheel set replaced. Which is good.

Still, let’s see if we can stop this, okay?

posted by origami at 12:54 am  

Monday, October 15, 2007

Dance Dance Dance Dance Dance to the Radio

Anton Corbijn is one of the key image-makers from the post-punk era, so obviously, when I heard that he was directing a movie based on the life of Ian Curtis, I had to see it.

Here’s the part where I speak–again–about how awesome it is to live in New York, where the movie is playing at the Film Forum.

Control is crushing.  The movie tells the story you need to know, even without a familiarity with Joy Division.  Curtis is not a sympathetic protagonist, but he’ll still break your heart.

posted by origami at 8:06 pm  

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Get Get Get

The never-ending battle between my cycling self and traffic continues.

On East 86th St. in Manhattan, there are several to many new buildings going up. When new buildings are built in New York, the sidewalk is blocked off and pedestrians are rerouted into the street. They are protected from traffic by plastic barriers.

That’s all well and good, until someone, say, me (just for example, mind), is riding his new bike (which is similar to this) for the third time along said street and is cut off by a driver and forced into a collision with said barriers.

(Just so we’re clear, the barriers are very much able to withstand the impact of a bike. Unfortunately, my front wheel was less able to do so.)

(Just for example, mind.)

On the plus side, I was mistaken for a messenger by a messenger. That’s pretty excellent, if you like messengers, which I do. Even if they are total nutters.

posted by origami at 7:44 pm  

Monday, October 1, 2007

Just Let Me Down Easy

I saw The Darjeeling Limited on Saturday.

To start with, things like this are among the reasons I love living in New York City. Knowing that a huge number of good movies will open here long before they open elsewhere–if they open at all–is very gratifying to me.

The movie itself was quite good. It fits well into Wes Anderson’s oeuvre of dysfunctional family stories. It comes across as a bit strange, though, compared to the intensive melancholy that has increasingly become the focus over Anderson’s career. It’s much more manic than The Life Aquatic, and this is probably a good thing.

In short, I’m still not clear, exactly, on how I feel about it. The themes are the same as usual, but it’s so wildly different in how it goes about addressing them that it strikes as a bit weird. Nevertheless, it comes recommended, as does its prologue/part 1, Hotel Chevalier.

posted by origami at 11:10 pm  

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Hands Up Like You Told Me

There’s no clearer step back, I don’t think, than returning to the place you left when you took your last step forward. Now, I’m going to try twice as hard just to get back to where I was.

Such is life when everything decides to pull a full collapse.

posted by origami at 11:38 pm  

Friday, August 17, 2007

And I Will Not Pay

My brother starred in a movie called Metal Gear Retarded while he was in Japan. I’ve seen a rough cut, and needless to say, it’s totally awesome.

Given the marathon of problems that I’ve incurred lately, it should come as no surprise that I’ve still yet to buy the Canon HV-20 that I finally managed to settle on. I want to get it so I can make a damn movie.

Not that I’d have time anyway. I’ve subsisted through unemployment so far by doing odd jobs and contract work. The problem with that is that, while they do take care of the short-term problem, they also take up time that I would prefer to be using applying for more permanent positions. Throw that on top of the natural stress, plus the fact that I don’t know where I’m going to be living in two weeks, and it comes pretty clear that I haven’t been able to do anything creative all summer.

It could always be worse, though. A friend has had a real nightmare of a summer. Personal tragedy is a lot worse than not having a job.

And hey, at least I don’t have VD.

posted by origami at 5:37 pm  

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Fight Test

I ride my bicycle around New York a lot. It is often faster than any other form of transportation and always more fun, plus it makes me feel a lot better about the fact that I don’t get any exercise, primarily because it’s, you know, exercise.

On Monday, I went to see Paprika, which was simultaneously excellent and bizarre beyond explanation. I rode my bike to the theater, which is stupid for several reasons: it was 85°F that day; I rode into Manhattan at midday; and I had to leave my bike chained up outside for a few hours. Nevertheless, I persevered. And my bike didn’t get stolen.

After the movie finished, which left me riding home in the middle of rush hour, I pedaled off down 2nd Avenue. When the city planners deign to put a bike lane on a one-way street (which they did in this case), that lane is on the left. I was riding on the right because I had a right turn upcoming, and not even a New York City cab driver would be crazy enough to take a right turn from the left lane. Wait, yes, he would.

This one, however, committed a far more egregious sin. Cabbies often cut me off to make turns or perform a passenger pickup or dropoff. This is normal behavior, but one could say that familiarity breeds contempt, because cab drivers are my enemies. However, this particular cabbie did more than just cut me off. He did it on purpose, for no greater reason. He cut me off for its own sake.

I pulled around him, yelling “Thanks!” (sarcastically, duh) at him as I rolled by. He pulled out, or tried to at any rate, but I was taking too much of the lane for him to get out until I passed. For vengeance, you know.

He finally got around me and yelled, “Why do you think they put the bike lanes on the left?” I have a sneaking suspicion that my response (“To protect us [cyclists] from cabbies, motherfucker!”) may have angered him, because he immediately cut me off again. I rolled past, again. He responded with, “My name’s not motherfucker. I’ll run you down!”

Now, the obvious response to that is to get away from the crazy man quickly. Which, thanks for a confluence of my self-preservation instincts and friendly traffic lights that made him stop while I kept going, I did. Still, I think it’s needless to say that within a few blocks I had come up with several to many witty comebacks to his defense/threat. The lesser of these involved either some form of violence against his car or insult to his manhood vis-à-vis threatening a cyclist with a car (obviously, the car would win. Thank you for your kind explanation, sir). However, the cleverer, and meaner, and more likely to result in my not getting hired by any potential employer that discovers this blog, were thus:

“I’m sorry, I couldn’t read your name card, Mr. Shithead.”
“Oh, right, I was the one fucking your mother.”

The moral of this story is that cab drivers have finally come out into the open with their previously barely-concealed desire to kill me. Which isn’t really a “moral” so much as maybe a “theme” or an “observation” or something. But I didn’t study literature at college, so I don’t really know. Anyway, the point is that they are more like Travis Bickle than I can be comfortable with.

posted by origami at 10:39 pm  

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

The Ground Beneath Your Feet

As we can all easily imagine, helping your boss to write his resignation letter is a bit depressing. The even better part is a couple days later, when the big boss receives the letter and calls you to tell you that you need to start looking for a new job.

Needless to say, this puts a further damper on my plans of, you know, enjoying my summer.

It could be worse. I could have scurvy.

posted by origami at 10:52 am  

Thursday, June 7, 2007

I Guess We'll Just Have to Adjust

In the spirit of comedy, I took almost five months away from this blog just to see if anyone noticed. As expected, they did not.

In any case, there is a little bit to update. I wrote a new short called Love and Respect. Bonus points if you can figure out the inspiration from the title. If I ever get to make it, I plan for it to be pretty stylized and hopefully awesome.

Ah, there we are. Reread the last sentence of the previous paragraph again. If I ever get to make it. I’ve been, if not overcome, then certainly blindsided by a continuing comedy of errors.

The main concern has been entirely of my own doing, or at least is exclusively my problem. Aside from Love and Respect, I haven’t done fuck all for months. I don’t know why this has been a problem; traditionally, I tend to take on a lighter workload in the winter, for whatever reason, and get a lot accomplished in the spring and summer. Now, though… nothing. For months. (Well, as previously mentioned, there was something, but the point stands.)

Past that: still no actor for Transatlanticism. The storyboards have evidently disappeared from public view, as well. The camera front has been no better. I waffled on buying the Canon HV-10 because if was missing a few key features that I wanted, chief among them a 24fps speed setting. So what happens? They release a new model, the HV-20, that addresses every concern I have with the HV-10.

And then my source of funding runs out. So no buy camera for Full Contact Origami.

All of this has led to a monumentally crushing insecurity. I finally had to start doing stuff that normal people who don’t have to work for themselves in their free time do for fun. It’s interesting, I think. I bet it would be more fun without the god damn crushing weight of guilt that I should be doing something other than, say, playing Frisbee in the park or whatever. To alleviate the frustration, I’ve been rebuilding the Full Contact Origami site as a way to feel like I’m getting something done. It’s been working so far, but now I’m almost finished, and when that happens, I don’t know what I’m going to do with myself.

It’s all very annoying.

posted by origami at 8:47 am  

Monday, January 22, 2007

Get Up

So: I wrote the shooting script for Transatlanticism in one night. I’m a little over halfway through mapping out the storyboards. I am under the impression that shooting has been delayed a few weeks because, while I do not have a problem shooting in negative degrees Celsius weather, many, if not most, of my volunteer crew do not seem to be eager to do so.

On the plus side, I have a crew. I didn’t even have to get them drunk. Yet.

It looks like my camera choice is good. Native 16:9 aspect ratio and high definition means that my job in editing gets much easier. The bad part is that I either have to get A) a new computer or B) more memory for my existing one if I am to take full advantage of the tools I need.

On an unrelated note, I’ve been afflicted with a soul-crushing insomnia lately. I’ll reach 24 hours in this most recent spell in about twenty minutes. I’ve slept an average of one night per week for the past three weeks. I’ve gotten whatever other rest that’s been from simply losing consciousness for one to three hours.

Needless to say, it is awesome.

I think I need to take a few days off of work. Seriously.

posted by origami at 12:47 pm  
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