Monthly Archives: July 2008

Yelling at a Blind Guy

When I’m at day job, I have a tendency to sit out in front of the building and smoke a cigar or my pipe while I write. It helps me clear my head, and I get a lot done. Generally, nobody bothers me. It’s a pretty good way to work. From time to time, though, there’s an asshole who tries to spoil it for me. On Friday, that asshole was a blind guy.

When he walked out of the building, his seeing-eye dog got a bit squirrelly, as if to tell him, “Hey, you can’t stand here. There’s something in the way.” Too busy on his cell phone, yelling at a customer service rep about a late fee for a credit card, the blind guy disregarded his companion. He told the dog to stop it. So, the guy was standing right next to me, and he kept creeping closer. He didn’t pay attention to anything else, because he was so wrapped up in his conversation.

Let’s reflect on this for a sec. I don’t want to seem like the uncaring prick that I am, but shouldn’t a blind guy pay a bit more attention when he’s outside? I routinely hear people bitch about those with sight not paying attention when walking the streets, and cell phones are usually the problem. So, shouldn’t a blind guy be at least a bit more attentive than someone who can see?

Well, this dumbass didn’t seem to think the rules of common courtesy applied to him. He kept invading my personal space. I tried to blow smoke upward, to signal that someone was nearby. Maybe a guy sitting down, maybe a midget. Whatever. There was someone who soon would be under foot. He didn’t notice. I tried tapping his leg several times. Hey, I didn’t want to interrupt his bullshit conversation. Still nothing. He kept coming.

Then, he kicked my blackberry.

From the noise, he realized that he did something. The guy reached down to pick it up. It would have been a nice gesture if he hadn’t kept going with his conversation. But, nothing would deter this Very Important Person. I told him to fuck off and back up, that I’d take care of my blackberry. He didn’t hear me. So, I yelled, “I got it. Just back up!” He finally moved away.

Fortunately, there wasn’t anybody standing in the smoking area. Otherwise, I would have seemed heartless. Maybe not, though. This guy was an asshole. anyone would have seen that. I still felt like a scumbag, though, yelling at a blind guy.

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The Brit gets it right

I hate it when people fuck with my work. Don’t get me wrong; I am quite open to criticism. There are a lot of editors who have messed with my copy, and I have learned a lot from them. But, there are some who do so without any real reason. That pisses me off. I would say more, but there’s an outside shot that the folks who have tried (and failed) will stumble upon the Migrant Blogger. The moral of the story: I’m a reasonable guy, and I expect that from those around me.

My father sent me the rant of some restaurant reviewer from the Manchester Guardian. This guy is fucking nuts– much crazier than I am. Giles Coren, the reviewer in question, publicly flew off the handle at the people who took the word “a” out of the last sentence of his review. Honestly, I get his point, and I agree with him. But, he’s is out of his fucking mind.

Oh, and don’t ask anyone for a “nosh” unless you mean it.

Diaz Offers 10th and Final

The auctions for Self-Portrait with Pipe, 2008 #7, 8, 9 closed last night with a flurry of last minute activity on the last of them (which I lost). All but #9 sold for less than $100. So, it looks as though the action has been tapering off. Early bids don’t matter, and buyers come in at the last minute, willing to go as high as the proces will take them in a very short period of time. It’s a prudent approach. I think I know who bought these three, and I’m glad he won. I know that the paintings will make them happy.

Now, the 10th paintings is under the virtual gavel, and it’s probably the best of the series. You can see the detail that typically characterizes Nelson Diaz’s larger portraits. I love this painting, and I know that another collector does, too. So, I put in my now ceremonial first bid and plan to back away. I got my painting earlier in the process (#2), and I don’t want to interfere with the story any more.

This will be the last painting in this experiment, so get ready to bid! After #10, Nelson will go back to selling his work for higher, much more appropriate prices.

Bid on Self-Portrait with Pipe, 2008 #10 >>

“Step Up Time” Is Working

Civil liberties champion and Manhattan Neighborhood Network talking head Jeremy Taylor is making a difference. Founder of non-profit Step Up, Taylor has lobbied endlessly for U.S. involvement in Darfur. On his MNN television show, Taylor has called for the International Criminal Court to indict Sudanese dictator Omar Hassan al-Bashir. Bashir also holds the distinction of being one of Taylor’s “Pricks of Planet Earth.

Well, Jeremy’s efforts have paid off. Bashir has been indicted. I’ve been listening to Jeremy pull for this for a year. The clip below first aired a year ago on MNN.

Okay, so maybe you don’t believe that Jeremy was the driving force behind the International Criminal Court’s decision. I challenge you to prove otherwise!

Street Performances

I see this guy usually once or twice a year. He walks up Sixth Ave– past De La Concha– with his spirit on display. Usually, I see him earlier in the year, so this was a pleasant surprise. In the past, he used to walk by when my friend was in town. It was just a strange coincidence. He was at De La Concha today, but missed the guy-in-the-dress by mere hours.

The bird on his head, I think, is real, but he doesn’t move. I don’t know how the situation works; it just does. Also, the dress changes from year to year. Once it was a wedding dress, but clearly, the guy has become much more festive.

I am glad this guy walked by today. I was pissed that I hadn’t had my fill for this year. It’s almost like missing a season. What would you say if Spring didn’t happen? That’s how I was starting to feel. Well, my itch has been scratched.

Shithead and the Job-Hunter

This is from another wall on that same corner where the retailer is setting up shop. Apparently, it’s fertile ground for graffiti. Sexy, Hungry and the True Believer have two other friends: Shithead and the Job-Hunter.

I don’t know what Shithead’s story is, but the message is blunt. She is a shithead. It says so right on her, so it must be true. I saw it in person, and you’re reading it on the internet. What’s not to believe?

Job-Hunter’s situation is a bit more complex. It’s hard to see the writing on the picture in the blog posting, but you can get a closer look by clicking on the image. The young lady uses her forehead to tell us, “This is just a job.” How true …

But, for a different passer-by, this wasn’t good enough. So, he wrote, “Get one if you don’t like it.” I suppose that means, “Get a job if you don’t like starving yourself and giving everyone who walks by a complex.”

I do wonder if the models in any of these pictures ever cruise through the Upper West Side and see themselves defaced. If they do, they have my sympathy. After all, once you have worked hard for a living, it must be difficult to see your efforts defaced and in an extremely personal way.

However you cut it, though, it was thought-provoking. But, I always stop and read graffiti anyway.

This is my fault

Before some asshole stole my bike last year, I used to lock it on the 57th Street subway station entrance before going into De La Concha for a cigar. But, my bike was pinched, and I no longer had something to lock to the subway station entrance.

Well, sometime since then, the city decided that it didn’t want anybody locking their bikes to the station entrance thing. I’d like to think that it doesn’t want anybody locking their bikes there now that I don’t have a way to participate. I’d like to thank the City of New York for caring.