Sunday, May 12, 2013

Five things this week


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1. Tunes by Wendy Rene:. Um, it may be an understatement to call it one of this week’s things. I mean, I’ve been doing most of my daily chores with her Best Of on loop for the last month or so. It’s just like me to get hooked on one record for no apparent reason other than it speaks to me at a certain moment, making me neglect any other interesting discoveries I may have made. I want to say I love her voice, or her lyrics, or her story, but I’m not sure it’s any of that. Maybe just the the honesty with which she sings, the kind of honesty I have never been able to convey without becoming a sobbing mess.

2. When You Are Engulfed in Flames by David Sedaris. It had been a few years since I’d read anything Sedaris, but after my friend Mel pointed me towards one of his recent essays (on taxidermy as anniversary presents, no less) I dug up this volume that I’d collected a while ago already. As always, David Sedaris delivers; not only does he manage to highlight the absurdity of many social instances in an almost Larry David-like fashion, his self-deprecation is charming to the point where he can be unapologetically bitchy about anything he damn well pleases.

3. Les yeux sans visage (Georges Franju, 1960). Re-watched this Friday night, right around the time I decided I’d forfeit going out and, uh, living it up or whatever in order to hang out in my parents’ living room with a glass of wine and sweet company. I loved this when I saw it a few years ago for Offscreen, but this time around I caught all these details I missed in the rush of the programming phase of the festival. Nothing seems accidental here; all the shots are perfectly timed and seem to hint at something beyond what’s on the screen. Branches reflected on a shiny car look like a spider reaching down to engulf it in darkness; shadows merge together and have a life of their own, as if to point out the doctor’s sick secret in the confines of his fancy home. And who can forget that mask. Shiverz, dude;

4. The Henri Rousseau reproduction my brother found in the garbage. Technically this happened a few months ago, but I recently came across a book about Le Douanier Rousseau in the recycling center around the block and was once again touched by the sincerity of his work, by its playfulness which the Academy snobs probably taunted him for, by the ingenuity of a belittled man whose talent went unnoticed in his quiet time as an aspiring master. Kind of ironic that my brother’s joy at discovering the painting was met with the same kind of disdain and mockery Rousseau must have endlessly encountered during his lifetime. People: eternal jerks, seriously.

5. Louis C.K and fried chicken with my brother. That is all.

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