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Dedicated to Oyl Miller.

I saw the worst minds of my generation uplifted and upkept by commerce and goals and finance and booze and pbr-fueled late-night whatever-tv-showathons, spiritually starved for satisfaction in a world void of satisfying factions, stomping through playgrounds made up of scholarships and inadequate financial aid packages — Obama-led fiscal promises of a scholarly sort — surrounded by stale dorm food masquerading as environmentally sound nonsense, ethanol-fueled utensils that crumble and whimper into pebble crumbs when broken. I saw. . .

. . . I saw this, I saw that, I saw me…part of that and this mess alike. And I say nothing. Because there is no point. Only dull, numbing, monotonous, claustrophobically silent panic gnawing at the fringes of my moral and civic consciousness. Endlessly and ceaselessly. And mercilessly. And carelessly. With an eerily, scarily, frighteningly exacting, random precision that outpaces any of my postmodernly scattered, fucked up best intentions. And “So it goes…” a wise, grumpy, jaded old man once said when he wasn’t that old and grumpy but just enough jaded.

140 characters? Sorry…1,149 is all I have.

Oak and Gorski must raise $10,000 by this week (Oct. 1st).

They’re at around $9000. It’s pretty much an all or nothing deal. Please help them not fail. Thanks.

Oak and Gorski Album/Music Video/Press/Tour KICKSTARTER CAMPAIGN.

After you make your “contribution,” watch Ed shave his luscious locks and donate it to a charity of your choice. And/or have Ken come to your place during their tour and give you a private cello lesson. (No innuendo. It’s an actual cello lesson.) Hell…BUY Ken’s cello off him if you can. These guys have. no. limits. Nor shame for that matter.

Help them out if you can. Please. It’s for a good cause. =)

____________________________________

Originally published in the Daily Trojan. (No longer archived on the DT website.) This is also the unedited version I originally submitted. I didn’t have any problems with the changes my editors made…except for them altering the entire perspective of the article by changing it from present tense to past tense. (Also, they asked for 1000 words. I gave them 1900…so yeah…cuts/edits obviously had to be made somewhere.) But yeah…this is how it originally felt.

Ken Oak, in a white long-sleeve shirt, jeans, and slightly messy hair that covers his face a bit, sits in a dimly lit, small, cozy Los Angeles cafe near Koreatown, nervously fidgeting just a bit. Ed Gorski, his bandmate, dressed in a moderately wrinkled grey button-down, cargo shorts, and a scruffy beard, leans back casually in his seat, one arm hanging loosely behind his chair. Both have faint but noticeable bags under their eyes — effects of the successful release of their new album at the Hotel Cafe in downtown Los Angeles earlier this month.

They are waiting for this interview, and this article, to get started as the cafe barista very slowly prepares the three mochas. The drinks arrive, Oak sits up, Gorski remains in his casual pose, and the interview gets underway.

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The Mavs are a team that’s rolling in hot and heavy and streaking. This Mavs team is possibly the best playoff-built team Cuban has ever put together…and it will be tough for the Spurs to get past them. But it is smack-dab in the middle of the realm of possibility to do so for San Antonio.

Provided certain keys to the matchup be kept by Popovich and crew:

.
1. Exploit Jason Kidd’s Defense

There is no better facilitator in the NBA outside of Steve Nash than this man right here. You can’t give him the open three anymore, you can’t afford to let him post up your smaller guard, and you can’t forget to box him out, always.

But (Steve Nash comparison still relevant), there is no slower, poorer defender at the guard position (outside of Aaron Brooks. Shout-out to my boy, George Hill! M.I.P., baby!) uhh anyway, yeah, Kidd sucks at defense now. He never was Payton-level in his prime anyway. (Gary Payton was the best point guard of the past 20 years. Hands down. No competition. Payton was Chris Paul, Jason Kidd, Tyreke Evans, and George Hill’s defense all rolled into one super point guard. Ridonkulous.)

Exploit. Exploit. Exploit. Make Kidd not want to play offense ‘cos of how badly he’s getting straight-up BURNED on defense.

2. Contain Caron Butler/Shawn Marion

Bruce Bowen made Shawn Marion comparable stat-wise to Matt Bonner for the years that the Spurs dominated the Suns in the past. Those Suns should have made it to at least one Finals. But they didn’t. Why? Because Bruce Bowen contained Shawn Marion. That’s why. And this time, neither Caron Butler nor Shawn Marion can be allowed to dominate.

This job will go to committee, largely led by Richard Jefferson. (The real committee defense will be reserved solely for Mr. Dirk Nowitzki.) Dick best play his ass off here. It’s our best shot at stealing this series. (Yes, over-confident Spurs fans, I said “steal.”)

Help me, Richard Jefferson Kenobi. You’re my only hope.

3. Tim Duncan…uhh…yeah…sorry to ask you to do this again…at your age…but hey…man…dude, can you like…ummm…dominate the other teams this playoffs? One more time? For old time’s sake?? Pleeeeeassse?

Yes.

4. Manu…uhhh…yeah… (ditto)

Si.

5. Popovich…uhh…yeahhhh….can you use more common sense and…yeah, we can forget about your mental-block you’ve shown against Dallas in the past. But this is a new time, man. You can do this. Say it with me now…COACH TO WIN. Not, not to lose. We’re the San Antonio Muthafuckin’ Spurs. You are a Badass. Duncan is a badass. Tony, too. And Manu is the epitome and the alpha and the omega of Baddassery.

Do it.

(Jason Terry is a loser, I heard. On the streets. Of Compton. Where Dre is from. AND South Central LA. Where Jurassic Five are from. AND the LBC. Where Snoop is from. Yeah. A LOSER. Terry. Jason Terry-cloth. HA!)

Song of the Day:

Jay-Z – “Roc Boys (Remix)”

sneakerbeast

This morning, after hanging up my Adidas Star Wars Stormtrooper Superskates on my bedroom wall, while slipping into and admiring my laser-etched Jordan V’s and glancing over at my Olympic-colorway Jordan VI’s, Space Jam “Hare” Jordan I’s, exclusive-colorway Kobe IV’s…I realized that I’m NOT a “sneakerhead” — even after scanning through all the ridiculous prices for each shoe on ebay. (I, of course, bought them for much cheaper…mostly at the store.)

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God Rests in Reason

Wow…has it really been 3 years? Where’d all the time go?

Well…each year, this post has gotten less and less ambitious, but even with my blog being dead for a few months, I can’t resist doing this.

So here it is. The top 15 albums of 2009, along with single download links and links to where you can buy each record.

One thing that I’m adding this year is the “specialty” selections: Best Remix, Best Mash-Up, Best Sample, Best E.P., and Best Collaboration.

This should be an exciting one!
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Warm-Up

Write for 10 minutes. Introduce a character, a conflict, and end the mini-story with one of the provided phrases. (I chose “And then she closed the window.”)

Victoria sat in her room, staring out into the cold, winter day. She was very sad, but it was a different sort of sadness. She wanted to feel sadness, absorb every facet of it, use herself as a prism through which to reflect all of it through, to see and know the entire spectrum of it. She sat in the bed for a short while, her eyes wandering around her room and back out the window. She took in all the immense, blank, sad emptiness contained in the thin skeleton of trees scattered on the sea of frigid, unwelcoming grains of ice. But she kept noticing the drops of melting ice incessantly dripping from a branch of a tree. And within each individual drop she saw that they, for a brief moment, held the warmth of sunlight — everything that contrasted the bleak world around their tiny, coldly opaque bodies. Each drop flew through the air, splashing and spilling out their brilliant glory on the white, powdery canvas stretched out below them. And then she closed the window….

Song of the Day:

Radiohead – “Fake Plastic Trees”

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