wow, so last time we spoke I was in vermont and it was snowing? Shit lots of things have happened since then; for starters, I can hear it raining outside. You may wonder why it's 2:43 in the morning and I'm posting this. Well there's an easy answer for that, just let me open another package of toblerone....that's better. Anyway, it's 2:45 now because I'm drunk as shit and listening to techno, god what a killer combination. I just got a text message, hold on. OK I'm back now and theres some Toblerone on my screen for some reason, probably going to end up getting smudged in and I'm going to wonder why there's a smudge on my screen for the next few weeks before finally wiping it off with a kleenex. good shit, along with my rambling,
I guess it's only necessary that I inform you dear internet readers (if you actually exist?) of how I ended DAB'ing (drinking and blogging for the acronymically impaired)
I'm sure I'll have some substance to schlep up on here about my whereabouts for the past week, since it's been rather eventful, but since I'm as drunk as I am, its probably better for me to focus on the issues at hand. Headed into the great "city" of Syracuse (read: not a city) tonight for some good ol' Dinosaur BBQ. I'm not completely sure of the spelling of BBQ, so I'm leaving it as an abbreviation so to avoid any loss of dignity on my part. Simply put. DBBQ is the home of the best BBQ around, period. If any of you smart types would like to challenge this, I have friends from several Western States who can confirm the legitimacy of DBBQ, and agree that it is better than any hidden gem of a chain restaurant found in the west (since we all know there's only chain restaurants west of the Mississippi until one reaches the shores of Long Beach). That being said, I was off on my adventure with good friends and a fair amount of Rum which was being hit harder than a joint before a high school dance.
Upon arrival we discovered an hour and a half wait for a table, so we put our names in and left in search of adventure. It didn't take long to find pure gold. In a city park in the center of Syracuse is located an ice rink, and we discovered that tonight was free skate night.
Sizes announced, skates laced, and wobbly ankles ignored as we took to the ice. Public ice rinks are where washed up high school hockey stars go to reassure themselves of their place in the world. Given the job of ice patrol, these decorated heroes of hockey scoured the ice like falcons, looking for any sign of unfair play.
After skating got old we proceeded back to the car to imbibe several more doses of rum, and then on to Dinosaur BBQ, the best rib joint in the solar system.
Words cannot do this food justice, and neither can grainy cellphone pictures, so youre just going to have to take my word for it, visit a restaurant, or you already know the dopeness of DBBQ because you live in Syracuse, Rochester, Harlem, or Chicago.f
Peace, love, and pulled pork..,
Posted by jack at 12/28/2008 02:42:00 AM
and boy is it snowing right now. I had a fulfilling day of mini shred with Tommy Shimko. After a harrowing drive home, I'm sitting in the apartment of Matt Mcginnis watching the clouds excrete copius amounts of snow. Perfect time to head north if you ask me
Posted by jack at 12/19/2008 05:21:00 PM
and I found the most fantastic little thing. It's none other than a tribute to the Vocoder! That's right, one of the better things to come out of the 70's, the Vocoder, is versatile in its uses. Having played androids, aliens, daft punk, and serving as a good memory jogger when the question: who the hell is Peter Frampton pops up. And since you probably still don't know who Peter Frampton is, maybe this video will help:
Posted by jack at 12/18/2008 12:15:00 AM
Posted by jack at 12/17/2008 09:45:00 PM
I was cleaning up at work today and grabbed a scrubby from the dish room. I noticed that the package said: "medium roughness scrubber". I thought to myself, why does the medium level of scrubby roughness exist? Either the job requiring scrubbing is something that's lightly attached, or it's cemented. I challenge anyone to look at a dirty tabletop and say that the objects making said tabletop dirty are attached with medium strength. NO, they either come right off, or you take a chisel to it. I don't understand why the medium of anything exists. If you're getting a soda at Burger King, you either get small because you are paying with change scrounged from under the car mats, or you get large because the worst thing that could happen is you're left with too much drink left over-which I've always found to be quite the tragedy (/sarcasm). I can speak as an authority on this topic because I am surrounded by avid large-beverage orderers, and I myself also enjoy a beverage of the large variety. Not once have I heard a friend exclaim with shear disdain, "I HAVE TOO MUCH SODA LEFT!".
But, due to the bulging of waist sizes, this medium rant has been skewed. What I always knew as a large soda is now the dreaded medium, to which I am happy, as the half-gallon-diabetes-inducing cruiser cup is not a very desirable purchase. Fat people aside, medium still sucks! If you're buying some weed, you wouldn't get a medium strain, if good shit's available, you get it! and if there's cheap, normal stuff floating around, why pay more for something described as....medium. If you're buying condoms, you're either getting big, or small. No one is going to underplay themselves if they can wear magnums, and in the same right if you're not big enough for magnums, well you can just shut up. Again with the offensive stuff, I swear I'm not this offensive of a person. Medium presents a paradox in my mind, the underdog choice that's not quite so much an underdog as small. Yet I know medium will still carry on, mainly as a way to describe poorly though out ideas such as this blog, but will carry on none the less.
I will offer my two sense (I am too broke to provide my two cents): either shut it off, or crank that puppy up to full power, because the only thing worse than a failure is a wanna-be-winner.
Posted by jack at 12/16/2008 09:50:00 PM
I like to drive, and since I commute to school, it's something I end up doing quite a bit. But I don't like school buses. Unfortunately my departure from school is typically synchronized perfectly with the release dozens of yellow bastards of the road. I've never liked school buses. I abandoned them as a means of transportation as quickly as possibe. 4th grade found me walking over a mile to school, leaving almost 40 minutes before I had to arrive, simply to avoid riding school buses. I figured that if I no longer rode buses, they would disappear from my life, except for the punctual nightmare of bus drills. Boy was I wrong. School buses are any drivers' nightmare. Try to tell me that you've never muttered a single profanity while sitting behind a school bus offloading an unending stream of kids. Do it, you wont! And then there's the little kindergartner that's halfway through the door of his house when he remembers he left his GI joe or Blackberry in his seat and goes tearing after the bus in tears. The superfluous blinking dancing stop signs stand up on the side of the bus, telling you to WAIT, there's children on board this vehicle, sir! Since I hate school buses, the drivers can't quite escape my wrath either. They bill themselves as protectors of the children; any error committed on their part can be conveniently covered up by saying "it was some other reckless driver....I was just trying to protect the children!" That's bull-honkey. Go into the town drinking hole on any school night and watch these "protectors of children" talk about the little bastard they wrote up for swearing on the bus.
If any one of these protectors of the children may be having a bad day, like I recently experienced, they can gain complete satisfaction from their total ability to FUCK with other people on the road and get away with it. As I pulled into the left lane to get around a bus of screaming bambinos, the bus driver checked her mirror, saw me, and then threw her turn signal on and also began vying for the left lane. I honked my horn, and she retorted with her air horns, then pointed towards the back of the bus as if to say, "SIR, there are children on board this vehicle, show some damn RESTRAINT!" So I slowed down but never relinquished my position in the left lane. After about a mile, Pricky the bus driver popped on the right turn signal and returned to the right lane. Were it not for bus drivers' handy habit of writing down license plate numbers, each kid on the left side of the bus would have learned a new hand signal or two.
Disclaimer: as many of you may realize, my blog is pretty offensive. I am not apologetic about this in the least. Instead I would ask all offended parties to seriously consider whether they are offended by who I talk about (in this case busdrivers/buses) or how I talk about them. It is not my wish to offend those who aren't deserving, so If you're a bus driver and youre reading this, unless you like to fuck with people on the road like colleague did today, don't feel offended!
I don't hate all busdrivers though:
Skied all morning working on a few new tricks that Ive been wanting to experiment with. After a long session with ample afterbang of course, I headed into the city in search of rails with my good pal Mike. We had set our sights on a steep 35 foot down on the SU campus, but upon arrival noticed there was a car parked directly in line with the bottom of the rail. Being as steep as it was, Mike and I would have come out of the rail with a good bit of speed and would have most likely transferred that speed to the car via a collision. Instead we set up a smaller line above the down rail. When I put my boots back on, my shins had become too sore to ski so I filmed mike for a while instead. Here is what came of the day:
slam dunk! from Jack Byers on Vimeo.
This little christmas present popped up in my youtube subscriptions this morning. With more twists and turns than a mountain road, it becomes somewhat predictable and doesn't necessarily leave you guessing what will happen next, but how it will happen. The way the story develops reminds me of playing war as a kid. One of your friends would "shoot" you point blank but due to an unseen technicality that you brought out of thin air, you'd be up and fighting right away. Thats what allowed us hours of make believe play, it was all improv. Enjoy
Its been a minute since I've put up some good tunes to bump. Three of my favorites at the moment:
Aesop Rock- Pigs (hidden track) Art by Jeremy Fish whose portfolio can be found by clicking here, but not here
The first two songs aren't a very good representation of my recent mainstream gangster rap binge.
straight from Chris Bradshaw's segment in Familia, this year's Technine flick, here's "Big Dreams" by The Game.
Lets hit the BARRRR.
Horrible joke, I'm sorry, but pirate jokes are just too easy. And the joke was meant to set the stage for this post. No, this post isn't going to be as lame as that joke, but I'm writing tonight to express my feelings of joy that pirates have re-emerged onto the world scene, and not a moment too late. According to Newsweek, somali pirates have attacked 120 ships in the past year. I know, I know, this isn't very awesome news for the ships who were attacked by said pirates. But we as a society have found ourselves embroiled in a contradiction of sea-monster proportions surrounding the issue of pirates. As the "Pirates of the Carribbean" trilogy rose to become one of the most successful series of movies to date, the world had fallen in love with pirates. Everywhere from Baton Rouge to Bali to Batswana sung the praises of a gypsily (not a word) clad Jack Sparrow.
Naturally after seeing the kind of love and affection these cutthroat pirates of the big screen were getting, some entrepreneurial Somalis wisely jumped on board. I'm sure being the common thieves they were before coming pirates was an occupation that hadn't gotten any love since the Aladdin sequels- how many are there again?- beating to death the idea of thievery being taken romantically. Faced with a dwindling amount job appreciation, these somali thieves probably hit up one last bazaar, and used the proceeds to buy a boat, and some skull-and-crossbones flags. Then later that night when they were probably drinking rum to get the pirate blood pumping through their veins, they drew straws to see who would have to lose an eyeball or a leg in order to fulfill the lovable pirate stereotype.
I'm positive the last thing these greenhorn pirates expected was to be met with naval force. After all, in POTC, the navy would never FULLY commit to going after the pirates. They merely launched a few cannonballs at the Black Pearl, and then cursed it as it disappeared into the mist. If the British navy as portrayed in POTC had actually used their force, there would have been frigates and Men O'war all over the pirates. Pirate movies fail to take into account that unlike man-to-man combat, if you have more ships, you are the winner. And while a pirate ship may outgun a British frigate temporarily, said British Frigate is backed by the Royal Navy. If you don't believe me, watch Master and Commander. After watching mincemeat made out of a French ship that both outmanned, outgunned, and outpowered the British ship, I had nightmares of waking up to Russel Crowe's steely demeanor at the foot of my bed making my feet uncomfortably chilly.
Another thing these modern Somali pirates probably didn't take into account was how to go about making that darned mist appear. Up to this point, the only disappearing trick they have been able to pull is being left in the wake of a cruise ship. That's right, a 684 foot ship with 30,000 people on board successfully outran a small pirate's skiff. Imagine the humiliation of 30,000 vacationers laughing at you and your fellow cutthroats and all you can do is take potshots at the driving range on the poop deck with your ak-47.
Well, Allow me to eat my words, as while writing this I'm periodically stopping to find more articles on pirates. You thought this was well researched? I do this shit as I go along, got it? As I have just discovered, the pirates have actually performed a disappearing act, and a damn good one at that. An Indian warship received word that there were pirates in the nearby waters. Sure enough, the gunners on the warship looked through their sights to find a shitty, tattered ship with a bunch of banditos waving their arms wildly on the deck. Pirates, clearly. Probably all hopped-up on rum and jonesing to board a cruise ship and snatch some booty (haha). Nevermind the fact that the boat in the gun sights was an Indian Fishing Vessel, and the 16 crew members were waving their arms madly to prevent the Indian warship from blowing them out of the water. In a stunning display of Military might, the pirate mothership, I mean fishing vessel was sent sailing on down to davy jones locker. As a skiff of machine-gun weilding marauders motored slowly by the wreckage, looking for anything of value to pop up, the Indian Navy uttered a collective "shitballs".
Ok, on a serious note, Pirates do pose a serious threat to shipping and cruise lines. But is this any different from the past? In a way, it is. If our modern pirates were like the pirates of old, they would be sailing around in cutting edge warships that could stand a chance against modern naval vessels with the help of radar, sonar, torpedos, long range weaponry, and cruise missiles. Instead, todays pirates trundle around in seaworthy rowboats, going about half the speed of jetski, with a quarter of the range. My advice to cruise ships and tankers: arm yourselves with oranges, because when the pirates run out of fuel after chasing your boat for half a mile, at least they will have a viable source of Vitamin C until someone can rescue them.
Lazy Saturdays are the best. I skied for a few hours this morning, but it wasn't worth doing all day. Came home and relished in the hours of afternoon looming ahead of me. Red curry rice noodles and a grilled cheese was the first lunch I've eaten at home in months.
When: Black Friday, 2008
A man wearing a knit wool hat and scarf enters the store, a typical holiday shopper you might. They split up and one walks to the TV department at the back of the store and purchases a medium size flatscreen TV for 600 dollars. He carries it to the door of the store, where his receipt is checked by a presumably 80-something war veteran receipt checker. Given the approval, the man proceeds outside to his car where he hands the receipt to his friend waiting for him at the car. He loads the TV in the car and gets in the driver's seat but does not drive off, or even pull away. The second man, now bearing the receipt walks back inside the store, picks up another flat screen television, walks to the front of the store, shows the receipt to the receipt checker who reads it, approves it, and sends him on his way. Flawless, two televisions for the price of one.
But it gets better... The two men aren't satisfied with their two-for-one deal, so they walk to the back of the store, pick out a TV, walk to the front of the store, show the receipt, and exit the store with a free television ELEVEN MORE TIMES.
The TV count is now up to thirteen, almost 8 grand worth of flatscreen television goodness. That's not the end though. With the televisions loaded into the car, the man who purchased the first television grabs the receipt and one of the 13 TVs, walks back into the store to the returns counter, and gets a full rebate of 600 dollars for the TV. He walks out of the store with a fat wallet.
Un-fucking-believable. But wait, don't the receipt checkers usually mark the receipt so this isn't possible? With the holiday rush this was too much a waste of time, and large lines would build up. Instead the checker merely glanced at the receipts and ushered the shoppers on.
Walmart didn't catch on until the following evening during inventory. They reviewed their security footage and saw the same two men carrying the TVs out one by one, but couldn't get a close look because of the hats and scarves.
My thoughts: Although it was a massive electronics theft, the two men creatively took advantage of long holiday lines with a lucrative yet simple heist. And Walmart didn't catch on for over a day! In my mind, those two men should enjoy their TVs, or the money they've inevitably raked in from selling them. They pulled the wool over Walmart's eyes, so to speak. Walmart has clearly been bested, and should cut their losses or even issue a public apology; such a high level of creativity needs to be rewarded.
I like embedding youtube videos. The fact of the matter is, youtube is a revolution. Ten years ago I would have had to find myself in the film vault of 30 Rockefeller to find a video like this. I can say with confidence that we are on the edge of an explosion of creativity in the media. With so many obscure videos available to the public, it's hard not to find inspiration for whatever. So without further ado, here is the late John Belushi's audition/screen test for Saturday Night Live.
Just sat down to make some revisions on a few papers and start cracking on a written final when the amount of work I have to do in the next few weeks really hit me. Fuck this time of the year to say the least.
A few years ago I wrote a front page blog for newschoolers.com. I'm not sure why they thought I was front page material other than my knack for telling wildly eccentric stories. A few of the blogs seemed to be real hits, and so for history's sake I'm going to reproduce them here.
I decided to be a robot for halloween. As I write this, i sit at home, at 1:30 in the afternoon, while the rest of my friends are at school. I am no longer at school because I encountered a problem that has been building since last night. My robot costume, all home made, was brilliant, with one exception. Robots don't piss. Not being a robot, I was forced to manipulate my diet in order to ensure that i would have no problems in school. Since the suit basically requires 3 people to help me take on and off, I was going to have to hold it, if the urge came. Getting to school was sweet, I rode standing up in the back of my friend's truck (sitting down was also not an option in my costume). First and second period were spent doing the robot to music coming from the speakers mounted on my chest. Third period rolled around, and i actually had a class. A college spanish class on the top floor of my school. After trekking across the school and up to my class, I got in, and stood in the corner (no sitting..) and prepared myself to learn some spanish. Maybe twenty minutes into the class, i realized that I was sweating buckets. Not good. My costume had absolutely no vents in it, save the furnace grate that was used as a mouth- and where i looked out. Rewind 12 hours. Before going to bed, i stopped drinking fluids, to make sure that i wouldn't have to piss during school. Total backfire. Today happened to be the warmest day in almost a month here in new york, with temperatures tickling the 70 degree mark. Yesterday was a balmy 45 degrees. The School never turned off the heat from yesterday, so my classroom was somewhere in the neighborhood of 80 degrees. My suit was undoubtedly close to 1000 degrees. For any of you who have ever been dehydrated, overheating, and standing up at the same time, the products of this situation are not good:
me: I need some air, this suit is too hot
Spanish teacher: Que?
me: please stop speaking in spanish, i'm not kidding, just let me go!
Spanish teacher: No entiendan.
At this point, i said, fuck it, and made a break for the door. As soon as I stopped leaning on the wall, and stood fully upright, I lost all of my vision. I began stumbling across the room, in the general direction of the door, as my class watched me, aghast. About halfway across the room, my legs decided they had enough, and gave out, but my brain was still set on walk/running to the door. This resulted in me packing my head into the wall next to the door, and blacking out for time #1. I heard some faint voices, of my teacher, and kids asking if i was ok, or if i was faking it to be funny. I stood up, saw one of my friends outside the window of the door, with his jaw wide open, just witnessing what had happened to me. My eyes rolled back into my head, i turned white, and fell straight backwards. Blackout #2. This time i woke up with all the faces of my classmates over me, looking down, asking me if i knew what day it was. Now, i've never blacked out randomly like this before, so i was pretty confused, but managed to sift through all the questions they were asking me, and give a decent answer. I sat up, the nurse showed up with a wheelchair, and wheeled me to her office, and then I left to come home.
NOW, normally, this would be pretty embarassing for someone. I am pissed that i couldn't see myself go down for the count twice. It was really an interesting day, and i'm sure that after i left my spanish class, they had a hard time focusing on the preterite verb tense for the rest of class. If you'll excuse me, i really have to piss, so peace kiddos. And on a final note: since robots cant tinkle, it's probably better that humans don't try to imitate robots
Before I speak on the topic of fire-drills, I know that there are those out there who will be quick to point out that fire-drills are a necessary precaution and increase readiness. I have this to say to you: establish a sense of humor for yourself. Life will have a nasty habit of ruining your day if you fail to follow my advice.