A blog of personal reflections, adventures both close to home and far away, political musings and commentary, and thoughts on negotiating life as a twenty-something, queer Mainer transplanted to New York City hoping to write, inspire, teach and change the world.

Thursday, October 11, 2007


Walking home in October rain I have the sound in my headphones turned up loud. This is the music of fall, of confusion, of heartbreak. Six years ago Tya and I published a fanzine together called "Twenty Years Too Late." It was a New Order and Joy Division fanzine, twenty years too late. Looking back on it, it became more of a personal zine, less of a fanzine. For me that zine is all about being twenty years old and moving to New York City, the city of my dreams that turned out to be harsher than I was prepared for. This was especially true becasue I moved here two weeks before September 11th. That zine is also about finding a voice after Septmber 11th. It seemed like the way I found to deal with the immense tragedy was to immerse myself in the music of Joy Division, which is, in so many ways, the music of urban decay.
It was fitting then that tonight Tya and I went together to see Control at Film Forum. It was beautifully shot by Anton Corbijn, the photographer who took many of the iconic photographs of Joy Division. What was so visually stunning about the film was how often he recreated those iconic photographs--I could pick out many from the posters that adorned my walls for so many years. I liked the movie, of course, I liked that at the end I could report with confidence, "That's Gillian Gilbert with Steven Morris, soon she will join the band and they will become New Order." But Manchester music trivia aside, the film gripped me. Certainly, the ending is melodramatic, what else can a rockstar's suicide be? The movie is based on Deborah Curtis' memoir "Touching From a Distance." The film portrays Deborah as dowdy but strong, practical and determined in the face of emotional turmoil. At the end I'm still not sure how the director wanted us to feel about her, but she had my utmost respect. I came away feeling less about Ian Curtis. Certainly, it does not seem like a film about a real person, but still about the idea and myth of Ian Curtis.
And of course I couldn't resist the temptation to listen to Joy Division on my way home ("Unknown Pleasures," "Closer" is still too hard for me to listen to casually). I realized again how much my relationship with this band is really about my relationship to where I was emotionally six years ago. Just how the fanzine turned into a personal zine, I realize Joy Division's music is highly personal. That's why they have staying power and why this film can draw so many peolple twenty years too late. Joy Division are a highly personal band.

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Thursday, October 04, 2007

...Let's Go Where We're Happy

Flowers for Eternity
Originally uploaded by killerfemme
Jennifer and I spend a lovely, sunny Sunday strolling about historic Green-Wood cemetary, a mere 20 blocks from my home! I made a set on flickr called "Cemetary Gates." I realized I always compare Green-Wood to Pere La Chaise in Paris. This is probably wrong, as Brooklyn is not Paris and Paris is not Brooklyn. However, I feel like I need to have some kind of reminder of Paris in my days. Nevertheless, Green-Wood shines in its own right and I want to write a longer essay on it one of these days.

Lucksmiths: Tali and Marky

Lucksmiths: Tali and Marky
Originally uploaded by killerfemme
Jennifer and I went to see the Lucksmiths at the Knitting Factory last Friday. I wasn't sure what to expect, but I knew it would be a good show. Those boys from Austrailia more than exceeded my expectations. They are a good, solid band who get better with every tour, something I didn't expect. I don't know how they manage to improve on their catchy pop songs, but they manage to ech time I see them. They are also very nice people and remembered hanging out with me when I was 19 and living in Portland, Oregon and we stayed in the same house for a month (that house was just as much mine as theirs, even if I was paying rent). In someways seeing them made me feel like I was 19 and living in the pacific northwest again, but in all the good ways: enthusiasm, energy, creativity. Marky told me I "hadn't changed" since then, but he meant that in a good way too (I hope). Come back soon luckies!

Lucky NYC Moments

NYC Rainbow
Originally uploaded by killerfemme
Sometimes there are just some lucky moments in NYC. I think I am more suprised at "acts of nature" here because even though nature is all around us (hello, islands) we are also isolated from it by brick and concrete. Thus, sudden downpours, snowstorms and more pleasent things like sunsets and rainbows make a large, unexpected impression on me.