Monthly Archives: October 2005

hali-ween

I’m hanging out at 5816 North in Halifax. It is Halloween. What’s going on tonight? Well these cats are really into bowling. Of all things! I haven’t bowled since I was 11. Maybe later I’ll check out some hiphop at the Khyber and some kind of rock’n’roll open mic at Reflections.

I just ate at Bach’s Cafe, where I love the food and feed on the love.

Saw a car accident last night in the intersection right outside this house. The experience of a car accident can be summed up in that single sound: BOOOF. When I was in high school I read a novel called Crash by J. G. Ballard. It revolved around eroticizing the car accident. That shit’s bullshit. There’s nothing erotic about car accidents. Unless you’re all about walking up to total strangers, ramming your dick into them once really hard and then pulling it out and yelling at them.

Save me some candy, suckers.

an a-1 post

This is my view right now:

I’m sitting in my car at a little park up the road from my house. Nice place for a young man to sit and think. Sipping on a root beer, eating some salt & vinegar tube chips. It’s warmer in the car than in my house. I was in the kitchen when the fire went out. Maybe it never really got started in the first place. Cool air from my lips in a stream when I blow (radio don’t play my hits, well I don’t give a shit, SO).

Yes I have a car now, a 1993 Ford Tempo. I’ve named her Arpeggio. “Peggy” for short. “The Arpeggiator” for long.

I made a video in which I set up some gear on the front lawn and serenaded my automobile. Just as I was finishing, the Road Node came roaring down my driveway (Jan and Randy, touring videobloggers). Jan pretty much made the video for me, so without further ado, The Chipman Music Video.

For three nights in a row I dreamed about driving. Each of those dreams involved going out of control and crashing but never mind that. On the fourth day I went to see Buddy Smith.

Buddy Smith has been selling cars in Minto, New Brunswick for sixty years. I went with my dad. My dad said he could remember one time when he was 19 and he bought a windshield from Buddy Smith. And Buddy seemed old then.

“Yes, yes that’s an A-1 car. You could get in that car and go anywhere. I’d get in that car and drive to Florida tonight. And that Buick… yes that’s A-1, an A-1 car. Driven by a preacher. Bible’s still in the glove compartment.”

I had this attitude where I didn’t want to go shopping for a used car, because that’s just a pain in the ass. I wanted the car to come to me. It’s much easier that way. (That describes my attitude towards a lot of things in life.)

Anyway, I took the Tempo for a test drive and it seemed to run fine, and the next morning Buddy drove the car all the way up to my house in Gaspereau Forks and got out of the car with all the paperwork in his hand already filled out. You could call this a hard sell but he sure was making it easy for me to get a car. So we negotiated and I wrote him a cheque and now I’ve got wheels again. We’ll see how long it lasts. The car-crash dreams have stopped so that’s something.

I took off to Saint John for a few days this week just to visit my family and lay low for a while. I walked into my parents’ living room and my brother was there. I said “Heeyyyy!” at the exact same time as he said “Heeyyyy!” I love hanging out with my brother.

When you answer the phone in Saint John, “Hello?” becomes “H’loo!”

I was following my brother in my car. He stopped at a stop sign and I pulled up behind him and flicked on my high-beams. So he signalled left and then turned right. Seriously, my favourite person in the world.

Has anyone ever heard the expression “gay as the trees”? Or is it just a New Brunswick thing? People say “queer as a three dollar bill” all the world over but I really don’t understand how a tree can be gay.

Tomorrow I have to get up early in the morning for the first time in about seven years. I’m starting a new job. I’ve been hired at the Chipman Public Library. I’m going to be a librarian. From rock’n’roll sound technician to librarian in a small village library. Canadian literature instead of coked-out Canadian musicians, wholesome family magazines instead of drunk chicks in Tarzan tops. Clearly I have shown a willingness to embrace change.

I’ll be “casual part-time,” which means I’m the “just-in-case” guy. Two people will have to line up their vacations and illnesses before I’ll get a shift. That’s OK with me. Just something to get me out of the house now and then. Keep me moving so I don’t freeze. Maybe I can hang out at the library and use their high-speed Internet.

On the way back from Saint John, just outside Chipman, there was a moose standing in the middle of Route 10. I slowed down, and then I stopped, and the moose did not care, and I sat there, and I said “Jesus Christ moose, I could kill you with this car,” and finally the moose got out of the road and then I grabbed my camera and shot it.

I’ve been eyeing this National Novel Writing Month business. I came across it a couple of years ago but it was already well into November at the time–too late to start. And last year I didn’t care about anything. This year I might go for it.

One thing I know about myself: I have a strong preference for creative projects that can be conceived, executed and completed in a single sitting. I don’t think I’m the novel-writing type. Maybe breaking it down into daily segments will make it possible, although chances are I’ll get restless with this project three or four days in.

Ideas are exciting when they’re new, then the idea itself becomes a prison when its execution gets in the way of having new ideas.

Fortunately my favourite novels tend to be non-linear and abstract, image-driven rather than plot-driven (books with a “plot” tend to get on my nerves). In the next few days I’ll be revisiting these books:

~ The Atrocity Exhibition by J. G. Ballard
~ Cities of the Red Night by William S. Burroughs
~ Project for a Revolution in New York by Alain Robbe-Grillet

NaNoWriMo will mean more writing and fewer videos in November but I’m OK with that.

When I got home from Saint John yesterday I went down to the basement to turn the pump back on. On the way back upstairs I slammed my finger in the door. Slammed it pretty good too. Bloody. Broke the skin.

I allowed myself only one swear word. But it was a good one.

T.P. tag

Now here’s a new videoblogging game we call “TP tag.” I got the first round, and then I’m gonna pass it off to Brett from etherworks.ca.

Let’s see if we can roll this baby right across the country.


tptag01-swordfight.mov
[1.8MB QuickTime]

music: “T-P tag theme song” by 9Volt Sound System (aka me).

~

Thanks to Gabe at xolo.tv for the button and the knowledge of the one-click subscription to FireAnt.

If you don’t have FireAnt yet, download it here and then whack that orange button to get fed a big pile of Swordfight.

too catchy

Five songs that need to stop being so damn catchy:

: The Arcade Fire – “Rebellion (Lies)”
: The Notwist – “Pilot”
: The Holy Shroud – “Say What You Are”
: The Postal Service – “Such Great Heights” [I’m a pussy]
: Fugazi – “Lusty Scripps” [bassline]

Thanks.

Honourable Mention goes out to the feel-good hit of the Fall:
: L’il Markie – “Diary Of An Unborn Child

Listen –
http://swordfight.org/downloads/MarkieDiary.mp3

frontlawn.mov

Brett from etherworks.ca just started up a mailing list for Canadian videobloggers. The introductory theme is “home.” So why don’t we have a look around the place.

This is the view of my backyard from the upstairs bathroom window…

Let’s have a look out the front door…

Somebody’s chilling out in my driveway…

Now let’s see what’s happening out on the front lawn:

frontlawn.mov
[6.5MB QuickTime]

~ music: me and my trusty TR-606

hartland-bridge.mov

On the way to Montreal I got to drive past Hartland, NB for the first time since the accident. I grabbed my videocamera and got some very shaky footage out the back window of the car as we zipped by. Here’s a shot of what you might see as you approach the town from Montreal, as I saw it that day in July. Notice the world’s longest covered bridge in the background.

As I recall, it was upon seeing this view of the bridge that my companion and I made the spontaneous decision to take the exit and go check it out.

This is Exit 170 to Hartland. If you look closely you might be able to spot a nice dent in the base of the metal pole. We did that. And if it weren’t for seat belts, it would’ve been our brains spattered all over that pole as well.

~ This time around I got a lift back from Montreal with Dave Harrison on Sunday. It was late when we passed Hartland, but we decided to go check out the covered bridge just for the sake of completion. Dave’s car took the sharp turn of the exit quite smoothly. Hooray for brakes that work.

The sign over the bridge reads: “HARTLAND NEW BRUNSWICK. COME AGAIN. YOU ARE NOW ENTERING THE LONGEST COVERED BRIDGE IN THE WORLD. 1282 FEET.”

The sign was probably made decades ago. For anyone who is confused by the old-fashioned measurement of “feet,” here’s a little video to illustrate roughly how many metric streetlights there are in 1282 feet.


hartland-bridge.mov
[5.8MB QuickTime]

Dave calculated that 1282 feet was also the approximate number of feet contained in 641 metric Canadians–all of whom could party on the bridge at the same time.

slaps.mov

I’ve been chosen as Vlogger Of The Week over at wearethemedia.com. Thanks and much love to Bre Pettis and We Are The Media.

I’m back from travelling, my iBook has been repaired and I’m ready to dive back in. I’m going to post a video every day for the rest of the week or you can nail my fingers to a dead giraffe.

Hunting season has arrived in New Brunswick. My uncle left his hunting canoe here so I’ve been spending lots of time paddling up and down the river. I doubt if I’ll be shooting anything, but I love having this watercraft and I love having the Salmon River for a backyard.

I was out on the water with my videocamera when the autumn equinox arrived.

The days are getting shorter. The light dims quickly in the late afternoon after the magic hour of sunset. Colours become dark and desaturated. It can be tricky to make out what’s happening around you.

There’s definitely something strange going on, down on the river at twilight… but you should be able to figure out what it is without too much trouble.


slaps.mov
[3.1MB QuickTime Player required]