Odd-y-ssey: Day 9
Thursday. The trip is drawing to a close. An early morning appointment forced me out of bed before I would have liked, but a neurotic piece of shit like me would gladly surrender an hour or two of sleep for a relatively clean bill of health. I had a bagel for breakfast. That makes, like, a dozen bagels I’ve eaten since returning home. Fucking LA and their stupid shitty bagels.
Shower, dress, and I drive into the city. I met Paul Levinson at the City Diner on 90th and Broadway for a late lunch and a brief interview. Paul is responsible for the amazing, psychedelic-tinged, folk-rock album Twice Upon A Rhyme, which was featured on one of my recent Sunday Mix Tapes. Levinson currently teaches at Fordham University (New Media Studies) and is a very successful author of both media-related and science fiction books. It was fascinating to hear his life story leading up to Twice Upon A Rhyme, his early-life flirtations with recording for Atlantic Records, and of course the album itself. We both ordered eggs and chatted for about an hour. At the end of the interview, I had to ask his impressions of the impending final season of LOST. He podcasts about pop-culture issues, television shows and technology, and his love affair with shows like FlashForward and LOST are quite apparent across his various blogs and websites. One such blog, Infinite Regress, has birthed over 100 LOST-related posts. Supposedly there is a post he wrote during season two which predicts the outcome of the show — some of which has already come true — so once I find a direct link to his theories I’ll insert them here, but I have to scroll through 112 entries to find it. Needless to say, he had many interesting things to say about the publishing industry, Twice Upon A Rhyme, and television. A very sweet, humble and fascinating man, I really hope to speak with Paul at greater length in the future about his recording career.
From there I drove down to SoHo, parked near Ian’s apartment under the impression that I’d end up there at the end of the night, and walked to the nearest McDonalds to search for abandoned Monopoly pieces. I found four more, including a free breakfast sandwich piece! Oh man, my girlfriend and her roommates are going to be so proud of me for bringing back more game codes. Speaking of which, here’s a classy photo of my girlfriend fouling out, eating an Angus Burger just to get more Monopoly pieces. I guess maybe she likes to food, too, but I’m pretty sure she just went for Monopoly.
I walked to Other Music, and continued on to Rockit Scientist on St. Marks Place, where I spoke with the owner for a while about the differences between stores in New York and LA. I didn’t buy anything, but enjoyed wasting time looking at all the cool psych reissues his store stocks.
As I was waiting for Z to meet me, I walked past Trash And Vaudeville and was spotted by the store’s owner Jimmy, who shook my hand vigorously and gave me a kiss on the cheek. I guess he somehow remembered all those years of me stopping by with Lindsey and Sam and buying too-tight jeans. Hilarious. We talked for a minute about his impending trip to LA. Then Z called asking where I was so I went to meet up with him.
We walked over to Blind Tiger. On the way, we stopped in at what used to be CBGB, which is now a high-end clothing store that also sells high-end stereo equipment and a couple records. It’s really creepy and weird to see the original bar there, only now it’s used to display different high-priced colognes. The area where the stage was now features fancy-ass limited edition, hand-numbered leather jackets that sell for thousands of dollars. It was kind of nauseating. Z stopped for a slice of pizza at two different places on the way. They had some good beers on tap at the bar. I had a Nogne O IPA, a Victory Hop Wallop, and a Smuttynose Imperial Stout. Dan and I ordered deviled eggs but they kind of sucked. We were joined by Evan and his girlfriend Cheryl, Mike, Sarianna and her boyfriend, and Nicci’s sister, Sarah. By the end of the night, Mike and I were the last two standing. We chatted with some students at Columbia and one of them (who is returning to London soon) requested a Swan Fungus t-shirt, so I guess Nicci and I are going to make a few more shirts once I return to LA.
I wasn’t at all drunk when I left the city, but I was very tired. I almost fell asleep driving home. Oops.
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