Tuesday, January 1, 2019

2019: January 1st

I've been hitting the Calexico pretty hard since Mr. Brown gifted me that Twentieth Anniversary vinyl edition of The Black Light. Their 2001 album Even Sure Things Fall Through still holds its place as my favorite record by the band, opening its sonic maw and swallowing me multiple times yesterday morning, a nice ending to 2018 that should help me segue into a peaceful and creative 2019.

2019, eh? Insert trite colloquialism about how fast the hands of the clock move here.

I finished 2018 reading the eldritch horrors of August Derleth, only to began 2019 reading about the real-life horrors of hatred in Christian Picciolini's autobiography White American Youth, a memoir of a youth spent organizing racial hatred in America and how the author escaped before it was too late.

I can't put this book down. Picciolini's  raw, unpleasant accounts are sociologically fascinating, but also enlightening in a true WTF way, as his accounts of places I know in the city I grew up in pave the way for my own personal realization to the dark underbelly of a burgeoning national hate movement in 90s Southside Chicago. A movement that was happening parallel to my own group of friends and our interest in Chicago punk rock. I didn't know Picciolini, but he was something of a boogey man in my youth. The skinhead thug brother-in-law of a high school friend whose house we partied at pretty much 24/7 Junior year, there was always frightened whisperings that while we filled my friend's two-level home with bong smoke, Picciolini might show up at any moment with a Buick of skinheads bent on kicking our scrawny asses for 'polluting our precious white bodies with drugs from the inner city.' The book and Picciolini's evolution out of the skinhead movement, his formation of the non-profit organization Life After Hate and its dedication to fighting racism, were a total surprise to me; Mr. Brown sent me a copy of the book last March, the first I'd heard Christian's name in twenty-five years.

I've begun and discarded several television shows recently; FX's Legion came highly recommended, but after four over-wrought episodes, ultimately just annoyed me. And the SyFy adaptation of Grant Morrison and Darick Robertson's Happy proved to be the funniest thing I've seen in yeaaaars for two episodes and then just kind of left me uninterested (I may go back to it; it's that funny). Finally K and I went back to Channel Zero: Candle Cove. We started this one before we left for Chicago and then kind of forgot about it. While there's some rough edges to the overall presentation, conceptually Candle Cove is right up my alley, and I'm eager to wrap up this first season and see how good the Anthology series becomes as popularity increases and, reciprocally, so does the show's budget.

Here's a clip of the titular phantom kid's show that runs through the first season storyline of Channel Zero; something about the close-up superimpositions of the character's faces freaks me right the fuck out:

Oh wow, and I almost forgot. Last night I realized for the first time that May 2019 brings another Laird Barron Isaiah Coleridge novel! The new literally made my New Year's Eve! You can pre-order Black Mountain here.

Playlist from 12/31:

Calexico - Even Sure Things Fall Through
Mark Ronson - Version
Perturbator - The Uncanny Valley
Graham Reznick - Robophasia
Iggy Pop - The Idiot
Alice in Chains - Rainier Fog
Anthrax - Persistence of Time
Bohren & Der Club of Gore - Sunset Mission

Card of the year:

Interestingly enough, both K and I received the same card. Spiritually aligned. The big idea here is the saving of money (both pulls of XVII were preceded by Princess of Swords, as if to help direct the reading). To quote from a source, "Make your plans for the future and risk a new beginning in which you set long-term goals."

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