Archive for the books Category

Here I Come To Save The Day

Posted in books, cinema, comics, partying, sex with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 25, 2013 by oldmandub

I’ve always wanted to go to Comic Con – San Diego. Ever since I was a child I’ve found comics to be a thrilling and exciting medium for art, capable of achieving breakthroughs in entertainment, concept, and physically impossible gigantic  titties on the tiniest of frames. For my small prepubescent brain, comic books were as much a milestone as internet porn was for my dad.

I finally got my chance to go this year. My friends Ethan and Parker both work for Legendary Films, the company that brought us all three of the latest Batman trilogy by Christopher Nolan, and the recent summer blockbuster, Pacific Rim, a nonstop action packed high octane cliché of a movie and yet totally awesome about giant monsters from another dimension rising out of the ocean to fight giant man piloted robots. They were there to promote all the latest that is Legendary and invited me to come down to drink booze, eat oysters, all at Legendary’s expense, and, best of all, gaze lecherously at the real life comic book babes strolling about town.

Wonder Woman was a popular choice amongst the ladies. This princess of the Amazon dressed provocatively even in the 1940’s when she got her start in comics, but it’s a whole new ball game today at Comic Con with surgically enhanced real life models and awkward yet prime 16 year olds all around you. Wonder Woman is a warrior princess fighting for truth, justice, and the American way, and has been an icon for feminism for decades. Now she seems to mostly be vying for male attention against Batgirl, Daenerys, and She-Ra. The competition is fierce, the targets, stiff.

As a hetero male with a healthy sexual appetite, raised on comics, video games, cartoons, and action movies, I was in heaven. And by heaven I think I mean hell, because this absurd display of hot sexy nerd dreams confined within this tight space with me in the middle induced frustration, panic, vertigo, and agoraphobia: despite the general symptoms of anxiety I still did not want to leave the building. Ever.

“Where’s the bar?” I asked one of the Wonder Women as she strolled pass me.

“Diana of Themyscira uses no staff. Only her lasso of truth!”

“Yeah, yeah, ok, cool, but I’m looking for the bar. There has to be one around here.”

“You know not of what you speak, man pig.”

“I’ll just go ask Tony Stark, thanks.”

That’s more or less how it went in there. These cosplay girls took their characters a little too seriously. (If you don’t know what cosplay is, it’s short for costume play. It’s not specifically sexual, but, clearly, it inherently is.) The guys weren’t much better.

“Hey, Inspector Gadget, tell me where the bar is.”

“Unhand me, villian!”

God damn it.

Metallica was set to play an exclusive show Friday night at an undisclosed location. The only way to get tickets was to sit through what I imagined to be an arduous panel put on by the band where they were to discuss their new 3D live concert movie mixed with a film narrative about a young roadie out in a apocalyptic riot outside the concert called Through the Never. There was no way I was going to sit through that shit, but I still wanted to go to the concert. I thought it would enhance my experience there at Comic Con and it had to be better than bouncing around bars and parties blaring house music from every orifice. Even a virtually nude Mother of Dragons couldn’t save me from the churning redundant beat of techno.

After a futile and exhausting search through downtown San Diego to find tickets I went back to our hotel bar to get a bunch of drinks and food at Legendary’s expense. While waiting for my food an older lady and her crew approached me.

“A boy like you shouldn’t look so sad at Comic Con. What’s the matter?”

“Aw, nothing. I just wanted to go see Metallica.”

“If I could get you Metallica tickets would that make you feel better?”

“Yeah. I guess.”

“Give me a minute.”

This lady must be James Hetfield’s mom or something because it wasn’t long before she called me saying she got me a ticket.

“Can you make it a +1?” I asked.

“Sure, no problem. Just hurry up.”

I turned to the gorgeous blond beside me.

“Hey, Catwoman. Wanna go see Metallica?”

God bless the bar.

A real life super hero rescuing a damsel from the distress of house music.

Comic Con is an extreme experience. There’s nothing else like it on earth. I can see why people come from all over the country and the world for just a few days of one of the most visceral displays of consumerism, materialism, and mayhem you can find anywhere. Hollywood, Madison Ave, and Silicon Valley may have expropriated the original dream of Comic Con, but it seems they have turned our young boy comic book fantasies into the closest thing to reality we could ever really get. I’ll definitely be there next year.


Bret Easton Ellis

Posted in books with tags , , , , , , , on May 29, 2010 by oldmandub

Ever seen American Psycho? Ever read Glamorama? Of course you have, probably. Then you know Bret Easton Ellis wrote the book that beget the former and the book that is the latter, as well as Less Than Zero, The Rules Of Attraction, Lunar Park, and the upcoming Imperial Bedrooms. VICE Magazine just did a great interview with him. I learned a lot about how this guy writes and what he thinks about being a writer. It’s pretty great. It flows like a conversation between two friends and not like some nosy critic or snotty college kid worship. I think there’s something to learn in here and I say, feed it a kitty.

Disappear Here

She’s Fantastic. Made of Plastic.

Posted in books, death, world history with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 10, 2009 by oldmandub

Some time ago some nerd kid I knew told me about a Texas sized piece of trash floating in the ocean. I took his word for it and soon told a friend of mine about it and he refused to believe me, saying that it would be impossible for such to exist without everyone knowing about it. Perplexed as to how I should now feel about it I then took it upon myself to do my own research. 4 years later, and a chapter I read in a book yesterday on the train, I have come to learn that indeed it does exist, and even some more deets about what is commonly referred to as The Great Pacific Garbage Patch.

Basically, how it works is there are currents that flow down the coast of California, across the Pacific, back up Japan into the Pacific, topped by the Alaskan and Oyashio currents that flow east-west, up and then back down, across the Pacific. This creates in the middle a slow-moving clockwise depression correctly known as the North Pacific Subtropical Gyre, and this is where all the garbage, 80% plastic, that flows predominantly from our coasts all ends up. The end result is a 10 million square mile heap of filth almost the size of Africa. It’s mostly made up of “nurdles”, micro sized grains of plastic that were eroded from bigger pieces, but are also the building blocks of plastics, melted down to make bottles and toys and shit. They are also the granules in most exfoliants washing out to sea with every soothing shower massage. Plastics act as magnets for poisons like DDT and PCBs. Because nurdles are so small, they get eaten by plankton thereby putting plastic at the bottom of the food chain. So for all of you vegetarians that still eat fish you might want to cross the chicken of the sea off of your list of snack time decor.

Since plastics haven’t been around long enough for us to really know how long they take to decompose it’s estimated that they’ll be in the seas and everywhere else for 10s of thousands of years. And there are six other major tropical oceanic gyres on the Earth, all whirling with garbage. According to Alan Weisman, author of The World Without Us “Plastic Debris…[is] now the most common surface feature of the world’s oceans… [Are] there any benign, less-immortal substitutes that civilization [can] convert to, lest the world be plastic-wrapped evermore?” On the bright side, when Galactus comes to devour the Earth all he has to do is poke a few holes with a fork, set global warming for MEDIUM at 5 1/2 minutes, give it a quarter turn, set it at HIGH for 2 minutes, let cool for 30 seconds, and then enjoy.