Monday, May 17, 2010


I just had some hot and sour soup from RED HOUSE, a local Chinese restaurant. Now it feels warm in my belly.  It was pretty fantastic as both nourishment and as a defense against this cold that's going around.  

Afterward I ate a fortune cookie. It said,

"Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment." 

I felt like this was meaningful but then sort of worried that I was twisting it to fit my own situation.  But I guess thinking about life as an experiment is helpful.

The Suns play the Lakers tonight.  It is summer now.  There are a lot of books to read and projects to finish.  All of these things are very exciting.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Winter break

Is over.

Here is a video I assembled that represents such a time.

I have been using this Vado HD mini-camera (?) lately.   The school loaned out to me as part of a poorly managed promotion/ contest (whatever) and strangely has not asked for it back.  I've shot quite a bit with it, and become a little bit better at capturing/ predicting "moments", or just spying on people looking at porn on their iPhones on the subway. Among other things.

It is, as most of you know, a new year. I have resolutions and am sticking to them (at least the ones I remembered).  My room has seen some practical improvements, like my new blue sunlight-obscuring curtains, and a padded computer chair. For the past year and a half I used a plastic folding chair. No wonder I've been having lower back pain.
I am looking for another bookshelf to tie the room together. Any suggestions?
I am also buying more frozen vegetables, on the advice of my mother, who believes frozen vegetables are actually often more nutritious than fresh ones.  Today I bought pizza dough and pizza sauce too. Tiny, domestic victories.

In academic news, I dropped Narrative because I was getting bad vibes from the pre-class emails and don't really feel like killing myself for a movie.  I'm taking Experimental Animation instead, which is an exciting prospect.  I have plans of making my wilderness/prison break film in the summer. For fun.
I'm also taking a fiction class, a Melville class, and an International cinema class. All have met expectations, for now. We get to watch Syndromes and a Century and Spirit of the Beehive and some other crap I haven't seen, which feels useful. 

The addition of Netflix instant to my life is a plus.
I am also trying to be more honest and learn guitar. 

Here is another video I filmed.

High hopes and optimism 2010.

Saturday, December 5, 2009


So I didn't end up getting the Advanced allotment the other day. I'm not too bummed, actually, except for when I talk to other people about it.  If they seem upset, I too feel a strange responsibility to be upset.  Like I'm not treating it seriously enough.

Listen, it's really not a big deal.  I mean it.  I'd rather you not feel upset about it.  I genuinely think this is a blessing in disguise, and I will still make the film I want to make, and hopefully will do a good job of it.  It just won't be in that class.

Luckily I've been able to bury myself in other work, which I am sorting through slowly and inefficiently (Story of my...).  Storyboarding homework, a paper on Disney's WWII cartoons, and a life drawing assignment should be manageable.  But three chapters of my memoir for my non-fiction class? What the hell am I possibly going to do with that? Have I even lived long enough? Done enough? Possibly the most excruciating exercise possible.  Why did I sign up for this class? Does this post count?

I went to the Knicks/ Suns game with Sean Dunn on Tuesday, which was a huge bust for the team I wanted to see and an almost uncomfortable surprise for the other.  Nash with 6 turnovers in the first quarter? The Knicks won, I spent the next day in an exhausted stupor, and except for picking up the new copy of Smoke Signals #3, it was mostly an unproductive mess.

Still fending off a general bitterness, I went for a long overdue session of basketball at Coles.  It had been a month since the last Sports Team loss, and still being in a state of mourning I hadn't picked up a ball since.  After struggling and wheezing my way through two full court disasters, in which I saw my athletic pride and functioning lungs flash before my eyes,  I pulled out one impeccable game of pickup basketball.  I'm a little out of shape, obvious from the first games, so in the third game, which featured some fresh and fairly high quality regulars, I made a concerted effort to use my energy wisely. I played economically, cutting when I had to, defending smartly, not crashing every board needlessly.  I pushed the ball in transition and played patient offense.  I shot the ball with confidence.  I felt great.  We ended up losing 13-11, but my stat line was out of control.  I must have been 6-10, 2-3 from behind the arc, with a few assists and no turnovers.  Team loss, personal win. 

Pickup is all about these little, personal victories.  Winning is honestly an added bonus, dependent on other, usually uncontrollable variables.  The fleeting nature of the "team" in a pickup game and the expected lack of overall coherence leaves a player little to do but focus on their own performance, and their ability to hopefully contribute in a positive way.  In a sense the best you can do is what you can do. 

I'd like to think about my lack of allotment in the same way.  It would be ridiculous and awful to gauge my being "cut" from the team as an absolute loss.  It shouldn't even be thought of like a team at all.   Why did I make that analogy?  I'm being unfair to myself and the process and the people who did manage to get it.  I'd like to take the progress I made in my story, in pre-production, in the good ideas I've slowly collected about the film, and hold on to them.  Keep going with them. Find some avenue to use them.  Small, personal victories. 

After the games and a shower and the realization that yes, I did have to put sweaty socks back onto  clean feet (forgot an extra pair), I emerged from the gym in a state of contentment that only fulfilling exercise can provide. I was tired and probably less spry but my steps felt balanced, my breathing focused, my movements deliberate.  When I got to the computer lab to study and write, my thoughts moved swiftly and the usual distractions seemed uninteresting.  I was in a zone of concentration accessible only to the physically worn.

Such is the reward of physical sacrifice.  The bruise in my thigh has colored and grown and my legs were certainly stiffer the next day.  But those are good, useful pains.  Those will fade and, like any great RPG character, the experience will benefit me and eventually lead to an increase in ability. I like playing basketball because I like feeling like my body has been used.   I like how good I feel after tough exercise, and how much more I wish it was a regular part of my life.  I like feeling like I've done something.  

Still working on the music posts. Trying to figure out good ways to talk about music, ideally with access to specific songs in the post.  Anybody know a good embeddable mp3 player a la Lala or something?  Right now I'm using youtube like this

"Call Me" - The Andrea True Connection

Upcoming music posts: 
Kanye, Big Boi, Harold Melvin, and the narrative of a sample
The Andrea True Connection and the disco's bad rap
Panda Bear/ Animal Collective/ feelings of fear/ envy/ bliss
Big Blood
Songs/ Albums of the Year

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


Here are two improv doodle comics I drew with the endlessly talented Blair Zhou the other day.  Thank her for the happy endings.   




Monday, November 30, 2009


...makes everything seem like the Olympics. Right now he is doing Sunday Night Football and instantly making it the most important and inspirational event of the weekend.

Which, in this instance, is saying something.

I had a great Thanksgiving. Spent it with the Malone family of Yardley, Pennsylvania; M. Night Shyamalan country. Played a lot of Call of Duty 6 (MWII?), bought a lot of comics, slept. Rinse repeat. Spent Thanksgiving dinner with Rob's family on his mom's side.  Oh Zach Feintraub was there too. I made a decent batch of cornbread, met some characters, fumbled through some social customs a la "Curb", and played far too many party games. Not the type of party games that are actually fun for all people playing, but the entertaining and annoying party games that all seem to take pleasure in their vicious exclusion.  Games that make you feel stupid.  Games like "I'm going to the picnic", the "Open/Closed" game, the "Indian numbers game", some other version of charades, "Umbrella", "The Green Glass Window", and then one game that involved a number between 1 and 100, some kid from Washington, and Zach Weintraub "blowing my mind". We never played that last one. But Bob Malone and Kaity Malone were super in to it, and I guess the general bitterness those games create is a small price to pay for memorable social interactions between strangers.  

Yardley was relaxing in the best way. Rob's family was wonderful and even started making fun of me towards the end, which is just about the nicest thing a surrogate family could do to make some kid seem like he's at home. Tried to watch a couple movies, but never got through any. Saw half of Big Wednesday, Ultra Warrior, and Silent Movie, the end of Unforgiven, bits of Dead Snow, the beginning of Scrooged, and selections from The Ben Stiller Show.  Nothing finished.  Story of my...

No seriously, I blame it on my hip.

I don't know how many movies I can get through anymore if my hip keeps acting up. It really hurts to sit still in chairs, especially when I am putting pressure on my right side. It hurts and I always have to readjust for temporary relief. I feel like it's a pulled muscle but it's not getting any better. I also feel old.  

The one full movie I did see in its entirety was Old Dogs, in theaters. It's relentless and retarded and surprisingly watchable. At least Bernie Mac was in it. Oops. I can't recommend it to anybody but my hip was magically cured for those 88 minutes, so in that regard it was a success.

I bought 66 dollars worth of comics in the last week, which I'm still sorting through right now. I really like some of the things I bought and really dislike some of the things I also bought. That's how hunting goes though. How else would I know what's going on in the often disappointing, occasionally extraordinary world of comics?  

I guess I spend a lot of money movies I don't like. The ratio is probably worse actually, for movies, than comics.  



Blew my mind.


Judgment Day

I find out tomorrow if I get the allotment in my competitive Advanced Production film class. A lot of people probably don't even know that I'm in Advanced, or I'm trying to make a live action short film, or that I'm even alive for more than one day a month. But yes, I am in such a class, and I am fighting to stay in it (By fighting, I mean twiddling my thumbs). My fate is in the hands of one stocky, bleary eyed, difficult to read Ezra Sacks, who is at times among one of the best things about NYU. However, he's gotten behind a couple of terrible scripts. Also he doesn't talk to me much. Considering there are only 10 allotments left for 18 students, and that a few of those students are certified "locks", I should naturally be feeling nervous or antsy about these signals, and this situation.
But I'm not. I'm not really that anxious.
I can't really relate my calm to anything other than the prepared acceptance of one's fate, in which I have not only gone through every possible reason why I would or would not be selected, but every emotional response to rejection as well. With all these options explored, any of the normal, accepted worries are now behind me, or beneath me, or at least somewhere out of sight.

I'm also enrolled in Narrative next semester. So I guess the film will be made.

doodles from Advanced

I am writing right now to remember how it felt, since it's been awhile. I apologize if it is of little consequence.

I think I'm going to write some stuff about music this week. 

NEXT TIME: Chargers (8-3!), Suns (14-3!!), the crazy airport and suburban levels from COD MWII, the crazy nightmares I had from said levels, the mad brilliance that is the Mike'd Up Sports show on WNBC, the new "Indy" comic Rob and I are working on, the public access show I'd like to be working on, the Brooklyn comic book festival this weekend, the various movies I haven't seen and need to see, and my obsession with YahooAnswers.

Thursday, October 29, 2009


Last post was something of a groaner. Remind me not to get that verbose again.

School is busy and constantly toeing the line between awesome and un-fun.  I'm always doing things last minute.  It's something I bring upon myself, and unfortunately its the only way I can give anything the sense of urgency it deserves.

Thank goodness I spent three hours today programming a universal remote, and reading Conan stories. Productivity gone boink!

The last few days have been really interesting, from the unironic and unexpected standpoint of creative inspiration.  I'm not superstitious or anything but it seems like the stars have aligned into the formation of a giant, driving stick in my back. I feel a need and fundamental desire to get things done, to take action! Ah! Here are some of these influences, in order of appearance. 


Puppy whistlin

Kephalid, givin me a hard time.  


Saw this on the big screen. A truly "mad" film.  Made me feel like a child in its scope and flawlessness.  Also incredibly funny!


 Andrew Stanton stopped by NYU, because apparently this is where Pixar children like to go to escape the evil clutches of their super cool parents.
He also happened to give a lecture on writing and story that, apart from being one of the most concrete and insightful storytelling lectures I had ever heard, absolutely blew my mind.


 Season 4.  Yay/ wtf episode 1?




 700 pages. He signed my copy of Breaks of the Game tonight.  I told him "The best thing you ever wrote was the blurb on the cover of 'Breaks'." I don't think he heard me.

(The page above is one of my favorite all time passages in any print. How good is that anecdote?!)

Anyways, I feel good about work now and am excited to get stuff done. 


Sports Team lost its second in a row tonight, and it was winnable. We were within four points with 10 minutes left.  Kinda fell apart.

My thigh is sore, and for some reason I can't wait for it to eventually bruise up. 

I just watched Nash hit a game winning acrobatic left handed layup to beat the Clippers (ack) and now I'm going to bed with positive thinking.  That's all anything is really.  Thinking.

Monday, October 26, 2009


In the words of Charles Barkley, "turrible".

True, this blog has been nothing short of turrible in the last few months, which is, I'm not ashamed to say, kinda the norm for the internet (and me). I read a stat somewhere about blogs and unused blogs, and how close to 98% of all blogs were considered "dead" or whatever (probably because of lack of concrete statistical facts). Which makes sense. I guess it's a little inaccurate, considering 30% of blogs are Nigerian pop-up scam blogs, but it's still an important number. It also closely aligns with Blake LaRue's "98% of all his ideas go unmaterialized" stat, which he can unfortunately back up with hard conceptual evidence.

INSTEAD, I started keeping a sketchbook. It began sometime in 5/09, which is conveniently written with whiteout on the spine, and kind of petered out in September. I picked a little Canson one, mostly because Connie's always looked awesome, and mostly because it had a $3 rebate on it (that I never filled out). As my first major sketchbook, I didn't know how to approach it, and intimidated by the tremendous amount of the blank pages, I think the early entries are random juvenile musings made at the Astor Place Starbucks during my lunch breaks. They're some of my favorite and most pointless entries.   I don't think you need to know what a sketchbook is about before you start it, because success is measured more in the persistence and discipline of the book than its achievement of some overarching goal.

The book, currently unfinished, ended up documenting a 3 month period of my life in occasionally shocking detail, mostly because of the dual responsibilities it assumed. I developed a tendency to write "diary-ish" entries along with the doodles, emotional and bitter and insecure ramblings that often overtook the feeling of the page. Text did end up pushing aside pictures for large sections of the book, as the more time I spent with it the more comfortable I became with dumping thoughts, ridiculous as they may have been (and almost regrettably honest).

But these are fun (or at least important) to look back on. They are so narrow minded, so focused on distinct moments and days, that they do everything a good diary should do: capture the feeling of a human being at an exact moment, without any perspective.

I guess this is sort of a longwinded introduction to my original point, which is that I want to start using this blog as a dumping ground again, and try don't feel bad about it being too much of "something". Blakecity, like many things in my life, has never quite worked out, and fell short as a cohesive web-experience. I can think of many words to describe it, and my attitude towards it, and since I love using loaded adjectives as excuses for behavior, I'll throw some out there now: restless, unfocused, inconsistent, disappointing, and just plain forgotten.

But this is a new post, you say. This is a sign of things to come. A green sprout through a crack in desert sand. New life!

I guess so. I want to make a zombie pun or something but I won't. I want to make this post more significant than it should be, but I won't (<--- this is the type of thinking that ruins blogs, and makes comeback posts so difficult). I won't even make any promises, because almost every idea I've "promised" to follow through with has failed reviews of everything I own, music videos of my youth, dream doodle contests, random pictures from my desktop, my essay on pandacam, etc.) So here is just a post.

To the right of this entry is a new feature on my website, called the Amazon widget box. To blogs with high levels of readership and influential cultural significance, this Amazon widget could provide some sort of revenue, but I'm expecting nothing of the sort. I like to think of it as an easy way to show things I enjoy with pictures and prices next to them (clearly the two most important characteristics of any item). I also like lists.

If I do update it I will post a few thoughts as to why I chose the items I did. If I fail to succeed at anything in life, it will most surely not be as a lover and promoter of all things I enjoy.

1) Michael Crichton. Pirates. $9. THATS ALL.
2) Raymond Carver short stories. I'm reading it right now so if you get it we can read the stories together and talk about them. The first one is really great and is about a boy who fakes sick to stay home to masturbate, hitchhike, and catch fish, in that order.
3) Because it makes me wish I lived in the backwoods of West Virginia. Short Stories. Author killed himself at 24. Very pretty writing.
4) On of my favorite longform comic books. It's actually all about the plants. Fantastic b+w art.
5) Melancholy on Mars, then more melancholy back home with Rusty Brown. Chris Ware: The greatest living artist? People will take classes on him in the future. If only he wasn't so sad...
6) The best series on TV (when Jackson Publick writes the episodes). An incredibly well animated and often hilarious one otherwise. Worth the $20 bucks for Dr. Killinger and Dr. Quymn episodes alone.
7) "2 for 1 special?" Where is my magic time machine that transports me to the world of this movie?
8) Early 90's Boston band. My favorite. The first 5 songs are the best cd of all time. The rest is cool too. But if I had to choose the best cd of all time it would be the first 5 songs of "On Fire" and the last 6 songs of "Today". "Galaxie 500" looks very nice in this font so I won't forget to write it.

9) How good are Nutty Bars?

Friday, August 7, 2009

wacky summer

Bored with a brushpen.

My favorites are

The fisherman
The guy riding a Reindeer
The guy scratching his butt
and the pope

can you find them?

I'm in a state of reflection as I leave for home in a few days. Interested to gain some perspective on the last few months. Also really want to start writing my public access show.

I'm sorry Blakecity. It's just not really working out too well. But I know you'll be there for me so I guess I'll keep you around.

Monday, June 15, 2009

basketball and other stuff

Hello guys

Hope all has been well. I'm doing okay over here. I'll be in NY until about August, and then San Diego for a bit, and then before anyone knows it Summer is kaput! and we're wearing jackets and long underwear again. Things seem to be moving so quickly now.

Frankly I find it a bit deceptive to be posting so sporadically (even if it is the summer) because it suggests that I've been off the internet this whole time, hanging out on the beach, partying, playing video games, finishing all the books and movies I've bought but haven't read/seen, eating mexican food, etc.

doodle, june

If only this was the truth. No, in reality I've been all up in the internet as of late, and in a bad way. I'm not getting anything done, eating a lot of Trader Joes nut mix, checking facebook in upwards of 10 times an hour but not doing anything with it, and, most productively, probably watching about two hours of NBA videos on Youtube per day. There's a lot of incredible stuff out there. Fascinating characters, specimens and freaks of nature, exciting calls and finishes, weird home video segments, snippets of stars out of their element, funny forgotten clips of players before their respective primes; it's a gold mine.

I'll get to more of these later, but recently I've been watching the entirety of the 1984 NBA finals, often called the best finals ever, with Bird's Celtics (before McHale even started) versus Kareem and Magic's Lakers. I don't know who goes through the trouble of posting this stuff in its entirety (something that could be asked legitimately for almost every web video, and is often explored by my good pal this guy). Anyway, it's a great series, and there's a lot to take in, from the presentation of the broadcast to how damn loud the crowds were and how good Kareem actually was. I could probably go all day but yeah I don't like typing.

I do want to talk a little bit about the NBA finals, because they happened, and I watched a lot of them, and sort of fell in love with basketball again in the process (see above).

It takes a pretty heartless, fair-weather basketball fan to just leap head- first into a month-long binge of game viewing, blog reading, thoughtful postgame analyzing, and constantly scrambling to find a TV to see said games, but that's sort of how it all happened. I watched a good number of games on shitty live web streams, which feels both diehard and pathetic.

All in all, I was really impressed with how the finals played out, and took on a whole new understanding about how the media tries to put together specific narratives throughout the playoffs to try and "establish" what these finals are "really all about". Which is mostly bullshit. If I hear another time about how Kobe "needed to win this one without Shaq" I think I'm going to vomit.

Thankfully, I won't have to, and there was definitely a wealth of just pure, good games throughout the finals that will sit fondly in my memory into the offseason (which I have taken a greater stock in). Other than the mega tease and premature ejaculation of the Celtics/ Bulls series, we saw a really promising first round victory by the Rockets, summed up nicely in this buddy comedy postgame press conference.

The streakshooting Magic were a surprise, and with Skip-to-my-lou, Turkoglu's ugly shooting, Rashard Lewis's Egyptian goatee, and Dwight Howard's twitter, a lot of fun to follow. I really became fascinated by Stan Van Gundy though. He has a brutal honesty in his press conferences which is weird, because his responses certainly feel nicer than packaged, programmed answers, but he does tend to beat his players up pretty bad.

In the end, I'm happy LA won. We saw three incredible games (2 through 4), a lot of bogus storylines crushed, Dwight Howard dealt a "learning experience", and a particularly awkward coach-announcer brotherly connection. But in the end, Kobe still needs the most dominant center in the league on his team to win a title.

This is one of the few times I will congratulate Pau Gasol. He deserves it; he absolutely punished Howard in the post all series. But he looks like a 6 year old kid in this picture. With a moustache. Gross.

In the next few posts, I think I'll talk about some of these things.
life aspirations
amazon widget
things to discuss in the next blog
subletting for august

And then, another doodle.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009


I read this comic called "Eschew" the other day, collected strips, good stuff. Find it here.


Some old scans I keep telling myself to photoshop but never do

Kinda embarassing, anyone want to go to some summer life drawing?

Just drew my summer to-do list on a napkin.
One listing read: "Do 3 comics"
Ya'll better hold me to it.

Big Baby can push whoever the hell he wants after hitting a shot like that.
Celts Magic and Rockets Lakers tomorrow hopefully I'll be done with school by then to watch some of them games.

Sunday, May 10, 2009


Face tattoos

No but seriously two great movies, go see em.

I'm going to make a concerted effort to use this baby more in the coming months and start posting some work and funny bits. Don't touch those dials.

Almost a tattoo

Monday, April 6, 2009

kickin ass

I am a Cassowary. I can kick your ass.

Hello internet,

It's been a while. Shame I have nothing to offer you. Our relationship is like a really depressing version of The Little Drummer Boy, because I don't know how to play an instrument. Aww shucks.

Jesus this blog is lazy. Lots of good movies out. Want to see some?

fast and furious - have to see it in a theater with a parking lot (post-movie drifting/ peel out session part of the experience) - made 72 million opening weekend wow

Anybody want to set me up with a summer job? I'll literally do anything. I am 98% legitimately interested in/ 2% romantically considering working as a deckhand on a boat somewhere. Deadliest Catch envy is partial but not complete excuse for this. If I can get an animation job or a fun internship or a weird job that pays well then that would be cool too. I promise I'll work extra hard and not whine about anything.

What is the purpose of blakecity anymore? What a crappy city. Like Detroit without the evident decay or sadness. I've got to get a real website and a real girlfriend and a real haircut. In the words of the procrastinator,


for the ladies

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

foamy like a brewskie

congrats steve

first run 2009
best director
best screenwriter
best film

Saturday, March 28, 2009

lkasdfdsmn asn

I shoot a movie in a coupla hours. yay! wish me luck.

It's about two bros.

and pizza.

hopefully back to normal soon.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Hey folks, I'm not avoiding you intentionally, I swear. I'll get to those dreams soon, they were really awesome, but first I want to direct you to the holy grail of the internet, a shining beacon of hope for the future of the world wide web:

Shaq's Twitter.