Tuesday, January 09, 2007

O, SOLO MEME-O

After nearly 9 months of blogging, someone has finally plumbed the depths of my astounding personal unpopularity. Yes, that's right: I've been tagged. And who's the crazy loon that saw fit to throw a bone my way? (Or maybe just decided to distribute the torture?): our friend George, from I'm Not One To Blog, But . . .

This meme seems to deal with, for lack of a better term, Art. Therefore, you'll all have the opportunity to see for yourselves the shocking philistinism that lurks just below the surface of the world's most pretentious blogger. I might as well admit right now, that despite majoring in English & all that shit back in college, I was far more interested in drinking beer, listening to loud rock music, or getting stoned and then drinking beer and listening to loud rock music than I was in arts & lit (in fact, that category was my worst in Trivial Pursuit, a game I otherwise cleaned up in).

That's not to say, however, that I remained ig'nant. Au contraire (see that? French. I got the goods when I need 'em). I realized that I could occasionally pick up the sneaky-hot nerdy chicks in my Lit classes by reading, and then pontificating about, highly intellectual reading material. Oh, the university! Anyway, on to the memeage:

1. Name a book that you want to share so much that you keep giving away copies: I'm not aware that I've ever given away a book voluntarily. As any of my friends could tell you, I'm extremely selfish when it comes to "loaning" out books, CDs, DVDs and such. In fact, I actually know which of my friends still have which of my books (that's right, I remember). I'm also aware which of the books generously lent to me by Neighborhood regular, Applesaucer, are his (and there are A LOT). What a cad I am.

But to answer the question, I'll have to dig back to the mid-90s and a book that I did voluntarily lend to a few friends (one of whom still has the copy, far as I know): Portnoy's Complaint, by Philip Roth. Among the funniest books I've ever read, it's the only "true" answer I can give here. So there.

2. Name a piece of music that changed the way you listen to music: Ahhhh, this is a tough one. So many candidates, hard to give just one answer. But, in an effort to be honest here, rather than just cool, I have to say Abbey Road, thinking of course of the suite on side two. While still one of my favorite albums, I can't say that I currently think of this as the most important piece of music or anything. But no other bit of tuneage had as much of an influence on the way I approach music, or how I hear it, how it affects me.

I must've been about 12 or 13 when I first "discovered" that one of the albums in my small but growing collection had this . . . mini symphony buried on one side. The silly little ditties like "Polythene Pam" & "Mean Mr. Mustard" went together as one piece. Music was art. Ringo could do a drum solo.

Changed everything.

(And unfortunately helped open the door in high school to Yes, ELP, and some of Rush's more indulgent offerings before I later realized that music could not only be art, but something to get you laid. Which is why Kind Of Blue could be the alternative answer to this question.)

3. Name a film you can watch again and again without fatigue: Another one that's very hard to answer. As the regulars here know, I'm a bit of a movie geek (bit?), with an undying love of a large percentage of movies released between 1975 and 1995 (how's that for narrowing down the scope). I own a small library of DVDs, which represent not necessarily my favorite films of all-time, but those I most want to watch when I feel the urge. Of course, most of these are favorites, but a few of those I love, love, love are considerably "serious" or "heavy" or just too long, so that I don't want to throw them on any given weekend (Apocalypse Now, Seven Samurai). So, I'll have to say it comes down to Goodfellas, Dazed & Confused, Annie Hall, & Miller's Crossing. I can't choose just one.

I can't!

4. Name a performer for whom you suspend of all disbelief: George Bush.

Oh wait, you mean a "real" performer? Hmmm, let's see. Without taxing my brain too much, I'll say Michael Douglas in Wonderboys, a film in which he OWNED the character, Grady Tripp. I'm not sure it was any bit more possible for an actor to inhabit the persona of a rumpled, depressed, pot-smoking professor on the permanent verge of chaos . . . even though Douglas appears to be none of these things in real life. I love the film, but I have to ocassionally force myself to forget I'm watching Kirk Douglas' son, one of Hollywood's A-list actors, playing Grady.

5. Name a work of art you'd like to live with: Does Audrey Tatou count? Not the sexiest woman in the movies by any stretch, but it's hard to think of anyone more exquisitely beautiful. Her face is like a work of art in my eyes.

But I'm not sure Mrs. Mike would want her to "live with" us. So I'll choose my favorite painting, "Boating," by Manet. Not sure why, but I've loved this one since I saw it at the Metropolitan Museum years ago (probably with a young lady, as I attempted to impress her with my "culture").

6. Name a work of fiction which has penetrated your real life: "World's End," by T. Corraghessan Boyle. It takes place in the area I grew up in. Its themes of history, class, self-realization (and failure), and soured father-son relationships hit me like a tumbling boulder when I read it about a decade ago. I've revisited it since and while it hasn't had the same impact, it's influence still casts a shadow.

This novel held a core role in a true moment of clarity when I first finished it. I can remember where I was, what time of year it was, what I did in the moments thereafter. Profound literally beyond words. Hard to describe, but it had a meteor-like impact.

7. Name a punch line that always makes you laugh: Again, many to choose from, but I'll go with a personal favorite: Cliff, played by Woody Allen in Crimes & Misdemeanors (one of his least-jokey films), tells his sister that despite an ostensibly happy marriage, he shares her non-existent sex-life woes: The last time I was inside of a woman was when I visited the Statue of Liberty.

And there you have it, folks. A little glimpse of Mike, through art, music, and film. Now leave me alone. I tag . . . Otto Man, Toast & DED. Hit it, fellas. (And anyone who wants to play along in the comments, please feel free to do so).
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Update -- 3:41 pm, EST: After a "planned" outrage outage that lasted juuuuuuust a bit longer than "planned," Blogger seems to be back and running at its usual crap level. The comments, which stayed disabled even longer than the "planned" disabling of the main page, also seem to be back up & running.

Here's hoping I need no more of these sorts of updates. I'm not planning to.

19 Comments:

Blogger George said...

Now that wasn't too bad, was it?

3:59 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

Not at all.

4:35 PM  
Blogger DED said...

I tag . . . Otto Man, Toast & DED.

You bastard. I'll try to work on it tonight while watching the hockey game.

George said...

Now that wasn't too bad, was it?


You bastard. This is all your fault. So do I have to tag someone else when I'm done or I can I be a dick and stop it? Does my dick fall off if I don't fwd it on to 3 more people?

After a "planned" outrage outage that lasted juuuuuuust a bit longer than "planned," Blogger seems to be back and running at its usual crap level.

Yeah, that sucked. Didn't these guys learn that you're supposed to do server maintenance "after hours" when traffic is low. Is this blogger's way of saying, "move to the new and improved version now, please."

4:40 PM  
Blogger Dwilkers said...

Does Audrey Tautou count?

And I thought it was just me. She makes my knees buckle.

4:53 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

DED - You must pass the tag along. If you don't, the world as we know it will end.

Dwilk - Ohhhhhhh, it's not just you, let me assure you.

In fact, I need to tell you she's mine. Hands off.

5:14 PM  
Blogger George said...

DED--if you don't do it, not only will your dick fall off, but it will shrivel and be painful for 7 years before it finally falls off.

But if you do keep the chain alive, Mike will get to touch Audrey Tautou.

And 3 words: Dirty. Pretty. Things.

5:48 PM  
Blogger DED said...

Mike will get to touch Audrey Tautou.

Why didn't you say so in the first place? I'll help a brother out.

The problem is, I've got less readers than Mike does, unless everyone's a lurker. Any suggestions?

6:05 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

if you don't do it, not only will your dick fall off, but it will shrivel and be painful for 7 years before it finally falls off

George doesn't take well to be called a bastard (twice, if you see what I said on the thread at his place).

I'll handle the "dirty" and the "things," George. Audrey just needs to bring the "pretty."

6:06 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

Any suggestions?

Mort. And "Edgar." ;-)

Ok, that's two. Hmmm, ask Toast again.

6:09 PM  
Anonymous mort said...

Hey you guys, this tagging stuff is an exponential impossibility, just like our monetary system of credit. After everyone on the 'net gets tagged, who else is left? You guys are part of a giant pyramid scheme, can't you see that? Ack, pethhhpt!!

ded sed:

Is this blogger's way of saying, "move to the new and improved version now, please.

Hold out, dude. beta sux, I hate it. Google is trying to take over the world by brutish methods. Resist to your last breath, use the force, Luke...

8:21 PM  
Anonymous edgar said...

BTW, mort and edgar are from two different parallel universes. Should they accidently come in contact with one another it would cause a "blinking out" of all existence.

8:27 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

I think I wore out my welcome over at TwoGlasses.

???

I already thought of MortEdgar. He might spontaneously combust though.

Whattaya mean?

this tagging stuff is an exponential impossibility, just like our monetary system of credit. After everyone on the 'net gets tagged, who else is left? You guys are part of a giant pyramid scheme

Oh, that's what you mean.

8:44 PM  
Anonymous mort said...

Pugnacious pineapple upside down pyramid of doom.

11:36 PM  
Anonymous Mike said...

Well won't Mort & Ed (that's right, Ed, check out DED's site!) be happy now.

8:11 AM  
Blogger Ed in Westchester said...

Shit. I thought I got away with not having to answer.
It's gonna have to wait to tomorrow. I just put up my observations, and want that to have prime spot for my 6 readers.
Plus, I have to think on this. A work of fiction that penetrated my life? Sweet Jesus. Does porn and how it impacts my sex life expectations count?

10:12 AM  
Blogger DED said...

Yes it does.

10:14 AM  
Anonymous Mike said...

Does porn and how it impacts my sex life expectations count?
...

Yes it does.


I have to agree with DED there. Not only does it count, I'm gonna say it's required.

Though we may need to speak to Mrs. Ed to get confirmation of any & all potentially tall tales.

10:24 AM  
Blogger Mr Furious said...

Otto Man tagged me. here are the results.

1:23 PM  
Anonymous Toast said...

Done.

7:31 PM  

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