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Archive for June, 2004

Making A Mix

Posted by evankessler on June 29, 2004

A couple of weeks ago John Vacanti had come to me with an amazing idea that a friend of his had pitched to him and I’m going to share it with you because I think it is one of the most wonderful ideas of all the ideas in the world. Step 1, Get a group of 6 or 7 people who have similar musical tastes, or whose musical taste you trust. Step 2. Each month one person makes a CD. Step 3, Mail out this mix to the other people. Step 4)Alternate person every month. Step 5) Once cycle is done repeat until someone makes the most awful mix in the world or if consistently bad mixes are made containing only bootleg grateful dead and phish and dave matthews tunes.

So I was sort of thinking about what I would want to put on my first mix and I’m having a little trouble but I thought I’d sort of work through the thought process here. I know I’d probably want to lead off with a song 1 from any album because sometimes they are put in that spot for a reason.

My initial thought was Kasey Chambers- “Cry Like A Baby” or “Barricades and Brick Walls” just because I think she has a cool voice and I just really dig female roots/country singers.
Then I was walking around with my Ipod and Yo La Tengo’s version of “Little Honda” popped on and I just thought., “This is one of the coolest covers ever and such a good summer song for just driving in a car and having wind blow in your hair.” Seeing as though I was walking in the sun with a breeze blowing, this appealed to me immediately. So I have my leadoff. I’m not even sure if I’m going to be the next person making a mix but a lot of thought goes into it. All I’ve come up with so far is a lead off. But I have some ideas of what I’m going to do.

Making a mix is not the same as it used to be. I still love making tape mixes but nobody wants those anymore. You have to make it on CD because that or MP3’s is the only real valid form of portable music now. There always seemed to be an art to making the perfect mix. You would sit by your stereo listening to the song as you put it on the mix. Then, you would sort of get a feel for how the song ended so you would know what song would fit perfectly right after. I used to sit out with all of my CD’s just strewn all over my bed and I knew that the moment that the song I was taping ended, I would be able to just grab the perfect song and somehow it would all come together. Now you can just drag stuff into a playlist and burn it.

The Good Ol’ Days of Mix Tapes: Car mix Circa 1999 sometime.

I’ve only made one CD mix for anyone before and it was for my mom for Mother’s Day because I know she didn’t really care how a song sounded coming out of another song, but I still took great care and listened through each song as though I was making a mix tape. It was sort of an experiment to find out if making a mix cd could ever live up to the sensation. It just didn’t. Whenever I was making a mix I used to sort of set a 3 to 5 hour block aside just so I didn’t have to do anything else. I miss mix tapes, but hopefully this mix cd experience will help me grown into the cd mix age.

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That’s Entertainment

Posted by evankessler on June 27, 2004

So it’s been a couple of days since I blogged, and I have to be honest I’m not too crazy about the word blog. That aside, it’s been a busy week and there hasn’t been much time for it anyway. Since Tuesday’s Aimee Mann concert, I’ve seen two bands play, been to an art show, and to a wedding. Wednesday I went to see Earl Pickens and the Black Mountain Marauders at the Rodeo Bar which is always a good time filled with beer drinking, all the peanuts you can eat and 2 solid hours of country music if not more. The only downside to that show was that they didn’t play “If I Could Sing Like That” which is my favorite Earl Pickens song. It’s not like I’ve never seen them play it before. I’ve probably seen them 20 something times, give or take.

Thursday night, John (Vacanti) and I went to see Jesse Malin at the Mercury Lounge. The entire time I was there I was worried about not being able to go home because I had lost my keys that day, but I found them the next day at work. When we got to Mercury that night one of the openers, Squad Five-O was performing. I absolutely hated them. Well, maybe that’s a little strong. The lead singer pissed me off. He just seemed like such a rock poser and that he was stealing stage moves from Mick Jagger and other front men. It sort of seemed like he was trying too hard to emulate other front men. He even gave a breathy, impassioned, sort of pointless political speech like he thought he was Bono. Someone should have told this guy he was opening for Jesse Malin at the Mercury Lounge and that his political opinions were not going to have any bearing on how anyone decides to vote this election year. That’s not to say he shouldn’t speak his mind, but I could care less what this guy had to say.

Squad Five-O left the stage at around 10 and Jesse Malin waited til 11 to take the stage. I found this to be sort of obnoxious. It was like I was seeing Guns N Roses or something and they wouldn’t take the stage until Axl was ready. Nonetheless, the show was excellent despite the long wait. He played most of his debut solo album “The Fine Art of Self Destruction” if not the entire thing. He also included a bunch of new songs from his upcoming sophomore effort “The Heat”. There were also some covers sprinkled into the set which included, Neil Young’s “Helpless” and Elvis Costello’s “Armed Forces”. Throughout the show Malin was very talkative and told several stories of growing up in Queens and playing gigs in New York at a young age.

The high points for me were his rendition of Cigarettes and Violets off his debut with keyboard accompaniment, as well as the full band version of “Brooklyn” which is my favorite track on “The Fine Art of Self Destruction.” His performance of “Solitaire’ also stood out. In this song he hits a note that is so guttural, and gut wrenchingly emotional that every time I hear it, I feel like it must take so much just to hit it once. I did not think he could do it live. It sounds like something you hit once out of several takes in the studio and can never do it again. I equate it with what it must sound like to get all of your pain and suffering out in one note, like his entire insides are coming out with this one note as he screams “I don’t need any one.” Much to my surprise, he was able to duplicate this seemingly impossible sound. Very impressive indeed. Overall, a fine show and a fine week for music.

Friday was quite the fine evening as well as my former college roommate, Samantha Hahn had an art show over at Teachers College. A bunch of friends were there as well. One of my other roommates, Kim O’Connell came in from Vermont. I was really happy to see her since she was one of my favorite people from college and I hadn’t seen her in awhile. Living in Vermont would cause that to happen. So from the Art Show we went to some place called Nachos, then on to Yogi’s (a fine dive bar honkey tonk) and then finally to O’Flaherty’s. I drank plenty and have no idea what time I got back. The details of Friday night are awful fuzzy. I woke up this morning very out of it. I freaked out because I thought I had left my bag in the bar which had my ipod in it. Upon further inspection, I had just dropped it on the floor as I entered the apartment in my drunken stupor.

Today was sort of a lazy day up until 6. I got a haircut, walked around, and sat on the roof. Then I went to a wedding tonight.
I don’t know how I feel about weddings. I don’t think that I want a band if I get married. I think I want to either elope because I don’t think I’d like the attention or just have a DJ and have everyone play coke and pepsi. There’s nothing dorkier than a wedding band playing Loveshack, The Way You Move, or any other song for that matter. And there’s always scores of people that neither the bride, nor the groom knows. Plus there are plenty of white people dancing like white people. Not that theirs anything wrong with that, but you should see it, there’s elbows pointing in all directions. I think that’s the difference between good dancers and bad dancers. Good dancers move their feet, bad dancers move their elbows all over the place without really moving their feet too much. That’s why I’m not really one for dancing too much. Get me drunk enough and sure I’ll cut a rug with the worst of them but if I’m sober enough, I’ll pass.

The funniest thing about the wedding was probably the guy who was wearing a wig/toupee with a ponytail. Not only did the wig just look like it wasn’t real hair, the ponytail just made it exponentially worse. I almost thought it was real because it was so bad. I sort of thought, no one would wear a wig that bad so it must actually be real, but then I came to my senses. Maybe that’s what that guy was counting on though. Maybe it’s a reverse psychology wig. No one will actually think I’d want to intentionally embarrass myself that much, so they’ll all think I just have unfortunate hair.

Back on the topic of the wedding band, I don’t think I could ever sit through a party of a band just playing music that I hate for hours. I know it’s for the guests but if I was getting married I’d want to hear songs that I like. Non- stop awful love songs is not my idea of a fun time. Most people like that stuff and think that its beautiful and maybe it is but I would rather rock out. Maybe I’d feel differently if I were getting married I don’t know. I spent part of the night thinking what I wanted my wedding song to be, and I guess it would sort of depend on your situation but I really have no idea what I would want. “Something” by the Beatles is a good one, but my friend’s parents used that one. Maybe “Wouldn’t It Be Nice” or “God Only Knows” by the Beach Boys or something by Clem Snide off of the album “Soft Spot”. That’s a pretty album.

Oh yeah and one more thing. I may have lost my phone tonight. Although I think I know where it is so maybe I’ll have it by noon tomorrow. I’m crossing my fingers. Ok, time for bed.

06/22/04 11:10pm
Evan Kessler here, who else? Fresh from attending the Aimee Mann concert at St. Ann’s Warehouse in Brooklyn and I can honestly say that it was one of the better shows I’ve ever been to. I mean it wasn’t Pearl Jam at Randalls Island September 28, 1996, but that was an entirely different kind of show. Mrs. Mann was in top form as was her band the entire set and there was not one dud amongst her hour and a half on stage. I would be hard pressed to come up with one bad song in her entire catalog so the odds that she would include one in her set is slim to none. This was the first time I had ever seen her live and I had previously been told that she was only okay, and that her on stage banter was mediocre at best.

Contrary, to that review, I found Aimee Mann’s energy and chemistry with both the band and the audience to be a pleasant surprise. She scanned through songs from her entire catalogue doing songs from each of her albums save for any Til Tuesday materal. But I wasn’t expecting anything from those days. Plus, the only one I really know is “Voices Carry”. The highlight for me was the three song stretch mid-set in which she played “Wise Up”, “Save Me” (both from the Magnolia Sndtk) and “Stupid Thing” (from Whatever). She even played a couple of solid new songs and throughout the set I found myself going through the myriad of emotions that usually accompanies listening to an Aimee Mann record. Mostly I experienced doubt, regret, and heartache but also a feeling of empathy because you really want to relate to the situations in the songs. There wasn’t much hope involved. There was joy however, as in the enjoyment I felt as I heard all of the songs I wanted to hear and realized how wonderfully intimate this performance was. St. Ann’s Warehouse is one of the best places I’ve ever been to see a show. It may even be better than the Bowery Ballroom.

The other major highlight for me was of course the 3 songs performed for the encore. The 1st time Aimee and the band came back out they said they wanted to take requests and the first request they too was for “4th of July”. (To know how I feel about that song see the blog entry for 6/14) and followed with “Red Vines”, probably my favorite song from Bachelor No.2. They went offstage again after this song and came back once more.

Just as they were deciding what to play one thought went through my head. That thought was, “she’s probably not going to play Deathly”. Right when that thought passed Aimee said, “Let’s do Deathly”. Then I thought, “This is the perfect concert.” However, a couple of fans tried to convince her to play “Guys Like Me” but she said she didn’t remember it. The show closed on “Deathly” and the night ended on an exemplary note. If you can go to any of her shows the next two days I would seriously recommend you go. It is seriously worth the 40 bucks. I also read somewhere that they were recording these shows for either a live cd or dvd but I didn’t see any cameras, so it may be the next two shows they are taping. That’s sort of a shame. I’d love to have a copy of this show.

Well, my week of events is getting off to a hell of a start. Earl Pickens and the Black Mountain Marauders on Wednesday at Rodeo Bar, and Jesse Malin at Mercury Lounge on Thursday. SWEET!!!

P.S. If you don’t have any Aimee Mann albums, get all of them!!!

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06/23/04 Guerrilla Interview Subject: Lauren H

Posted by evankessler on June 24, 2004

Lauren carries some dude on her back.

Lauren H is a fiery redheaded lass who attended the University of Texas- Austin,
whom I met at my friend Rich M’s parties when he first started having parties in the city.
We became friendly immediately despite all of my desperate advances towards her. I’m not really sure what she does for a living. I’m sure she’s told me and I’m sure it involves things. This interview was done over email so it wasn’t really as quick moving as the previous, but that’s not my fault. Email is infinitely slower than IM and it also reveals who is sending you a message so my cover was not well disguised. In fact, it was not disguised at all. So without further ado, the second installment of The EvanKessler.com Guerrilla interview.

Evan: Why do you do it?

Lauren: I have to. I must. I am compelled by my love of all things composed of matter.

Evan: What do you think I’m referring to when I say “it”?

Not that it matters, but I thought you were referring to why I’m so cool.

Evan: I don’t think “it” can refer to why one person is so cool. I didn’t use it in a phrase like What is your “it” factor?”

Lauren: I would apologize, but I think that question was open to thousands of interpretations.

(several minutes pass)

Lauren: Is this the part where you wait for me to say something? Or is it my turn to ask the questions here?

Evan: No, I still have the floor. So, when you said to me on New Year’s Eve, “Evan, IT’ll never happen”. What was the “it” you were referring to?

Lauren: I believe I was referring to stripping my clothes off for your video camera, but I could be wrong.

Evan: So am I to assume that every time I hear the word “it” that “it” means stripping the clothes off in my video?

Lauren: No.

What “It” may have meant.

Evan: Phew! That was a close one. I thought I was going to have to stop saying the word “it” altogether. While we’re at it, are there any words you think I should refrain from using altogether?

Lauren: Personally, I hate the word ‘agro’. Don’t use it.

Evan: Don’t worry I wasn’t really planning on it. But unless you agree to not use Snoop Dogg language I may bombard you with more “agro” than you can handle.

Lauren: You’re safe with me. I couldn’t use Snoop Dogg language if i tried.

Evan: Good, so what makes Lauren H tick?

Lauren: I would love to tell you that it’s a complex network of veins and arteries powered by a system that converts food into caloric energy, but I would be lying.

Evan: Right, because those are things that human beings have… And you are a what exactly?

Lauren: I am, admittedly human, but I would say that there are other things
besides the physical stuff that makes me tick.

Evan: Sorry that was a little mean. How do you feel about Evan Kessler?

Lauren: I like Evan kessler. He’s swell. I’m lucky to have met him.

Evan: Well I’m very flattered, sorry about referring to myself in third person but I had to get an honest answer as though it seemed I was not asking the question.

Evan: Interpret the following lyric: “One of us is a cigar stand and one of us is a lovely blue incandescent guillotine.”

Lauren: Hmmm….Bill talking to Monica?

Evan: Interesting theory, but no. Would you say this interview is going nowhere fast?

Lauren: Nowhere slow is more like it. When did we start this? Like 16 hours ago?

Evan: Probably about 4 hours ago, but its meant to have the appearance of a rapid fire interview.I guess email correspondence isn’t the best way to do this.

Lauren: Let’s try courier pigeons next time.

Evan: I think I might just send telegrams. No one does that anymore.
How has EvanKessler.com changed your life?

Lauren: It has filled my life with laughter and joy.

Evan: And Finally, where do you see yourself in 5 years? And where is Evan Kessler in this picture? Is he next to you, Behind you, way in the background, A little to the left, A little to the right, or just completely out of the picture?

In five years I might still be doing this interview.and Evan Kessler is all around me, a floating around head in cyber space.

Evan: Well, you have simply been a delight to converse with. Thank you for your patience in taking part in the EvanKessler.com Guerrilla Interview, Where the unsuspecting start suspecting early on in the conversation that they are in fact, being interviewed.

Lauren: Anytime, baby, anytime.


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Critically Annoying

Posted by evankessler on June 21, 2004

I was flipping through the newspaper today as I took the train back to Rockland County . As I came to the movie section, a huge ad for the new movie “The Terminal” starring Tom Hanks and Catherine Zeta-Jones. I browsed through the review blurbs. I’ve long been aware that these are just quotes mostly taken out of context and in no way really tell you much about the movie, but I read them anyway just to get somewhat of an idea of how good a movie actually is. I mean if there’s a quote from Carson Daly that says, “It’s really awesome,” taken out of context from an interview of Last Call, you know that a movie is a piece of crap. Furthermore, if you ever see a positive review from Ron Brewington of the Urban Radio Network the movie is worse than any form of dung that could describe it. I’m convinced that guy is paid off, or just gives everything positive reviews because he simply enjoys seeing his name in print. Reading the blurbs is utterly pointless because inevitably they all say something like “the perfect popcorn movie” or “truly heartbreaking” or “a great date film” or “fun for the whole family”.

However I came across a true gem of a blurb review in this ad. Gene Shalit actually uttered the following words while referring to the film “The Terminal”: “This film is terminally entertaining.” Not only is this just an awful play on words; it’s also one of the most idiotic things I’ve ever read anywhere. I realize that Mr. Shalit was trying to be clever but does he have anyone who edits this crap before he says it? Or does everyone just kiss his ass and tell him he’s doing a great job because him and his mustache have been at it so long. It was the least clever pun in the history of the world. It’s sort of like saying that we should all go see Brother Bear because its Beariffic!

Furthermore, upon hearing that a film is “terminally entertaining”, I half expect to die while I’m watching the movie. After all, usually when you hear the word “terminally” it’s usually next to the word “ill” or something equally bleak. So thanks to Gene Shalit I will not see The Terminal, in part because I’m afraid of dying in a movie theatre and because most of the other people whose blurbs were featured in the ad were your run of the mill Hollywood ass kissers. The other reason is that I never really had a desire to see it anyway but Mr. Shalit, thou hast fueled my fire.

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E.O.S. (Evan On the Street)

Posted by evankessler on June 20, 2004

I came to the stark realization today that I am not the target audience for any street marketing team or “street team” if we want to use the abbreviated term. I was walking by tower records at around 3:30 pm today when a street team member said to me “Hey Homey, you like hip hop?” Sure I was wearing my headphones and I was probably rocking out to some extent but, “homey”. I don’t have any problem with hip hop, well I do to some extent but not in general with the form of music, but the term homey sort of threw me for a loop. Was this guy attempting to find some common ground by latching on to me by using “homey” as a slang term of endearment? Probably the last time I’ve heard this phrased used was somewhere within the 1989 to 1993 time span when Damon Wayans was whooping it up as Homey the clown on In Living Color. I know, the Wayans’ are still around with the White Chicks posters on the subway as eveidence but “homey”? I haven’t heard that term in years. I’m probably the last person you would look at and think is a homey. I don’t even know if I spelled the term right. Seriously, I’m as un hip hop looking as they come and about as unhomeyable too. I didn’t stop and ask him why he thought I would respond to that approach but it managed to perplex me throughout the course of the day. It’s probably just part of his street team marketing repertoire but I found it somewhat troublesome. Evan Kessler is not your homey or your brother, he’s just a dude or man or Ev, or Evan as far as I’m concerned.

I also realized today that flavoring is not necessary. I was at Marty and Adam’s party in Brooklyn tonight, and Adam had bought potato chips with Steak and Worcestershire Sauce flavoring. This was absolutely unnecessary and absolutely disgusting. I understand the meat and potatoes thought process behind this idea, but the execution was absolutely horrendous. I find it almost as despicable as the lime Tostitos idea, because at least meat and potatoes makes sense. Lime and corn makes no sense to me.

Sidenote for the rest of the day. I saw Clem Snide at the East River Park amphiteatre on Grand and the FDR drive. They were fucking fantastic. I love that band. Eef Barzelay’s lyrics and delivery were as sharp as usual and the rest of the band was extremely tight.. They played a lot of great new songs but mixed them in with a decent amount of old songs, and played one of my favorite songs “Messiah Complex Blues”. The sound at the venue was absolutely flawless. I couldn’t believe such a rarely used venue produced such superior acoustics. Why aren’t there more shows here? There must be more shows at this amphitheatre throughout the rest of the summer. I’ve had three days of live music in a row now, and I’m extremely pleased. I haven’t been going to enough shows lately but I have two coming up next week. Aimee Mann is playing at St. Ann’s Warehouse on Tuesday and Jesse Malin is playing Mercury Lounge on Thursday. With each new day the excitement gets greater and greater. I can’t wait!!

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Ben Lee, Poingly, and Ponies

Posted by evankessler on June 19, 2004

Last night (Thursday I guess even though it’s technically Saturday now) I went to see Ben Lee at the Knitting Factory with a couple of work friends. It was a pretty good show. Most of the songs were new with the exception of Pop Queen, Away With The Pixies, Song 4 You and Chills. He also covered Float On by Modest Mouse. Ben had his usual keyboardist Lara playing with him along with Jason Schwartzmann on drums and some occasional keyboards. His usual guitarist McGowan was absent. He also had exceptional opening bands The Like and Pony Up. Both were chick rock bands, which I pretty much always dig anyway, but they really kicked ass.

Ben Lee by Greg Kessler http://www.kesslerstudio.com/

After the show, I was pretty tired and was about to go home when my friends suggested hitting the village tavern, which I couldn’t turn down seeing as it is literally around the corner from my apartment. I wasn’t that drunk when we got there but by the time we left I’d had a couple more beers and a couple more shots to go with the Pabst and Fosters I had been downing at the Knitting Factory. Note to self: When you’re already about 5 beers deep there really is no need for shots. When I got home drunk at around 1 something I attempted to write a review of the Ben Lee show for the website but when I read it this morning it was the most rambling incoherent, pseudo intellectual drunk babble I’d ever seen. It was not worthy of the other rambling incoherent, pseudo intellectual babble on this website. So I decided to spare everyone the pain of reading it, and spare myself the embarrassment I guess. I woke up this morning feeling like an elephant had slept on me. Needless to say today was a long day and I was at work until about 7:30. Pretty crappy for a Friday.

After work I chilled out then I went to Poingly’s birthday party at Bar 169 on E. Broadway and Rutgers St. When I walked in I saw Jason Schwartzmann, Ben Lee, and the members of Pony Up enjoying my friend Poingly’s performance which usually consists of writhing and screaming and making everyone pull the string of one of those “A Cow Goes Moo” kids toys. It was sort of a funny coincidence that I saw them two nights in a row. After Poingly played Pony Up went on. Once again, they were solid. Who knew Canadian chicks could rock so much. I’m going to link to their web site. I then kicked John’s ass in pool and was home by 12:00. All in a days work.

One more thing: Sign this petition to bring back the Chocodile. Some things are worth fighting for.

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06/16/04 Guerilla Interview Subject: Adam Starling

Posted by evankessler on June 17, 2004

Mr. Starling gives the ladies that come hither look.

Just a little background on Adam Starling, he works on I Love the 90’s at VH1 but I have no idea what his official job title is. He sort of collects tapes and sends official sounding emails with attachments. Okay, that’s enough of that. This interview took place over instant messenger when a unsuspecting Adam fielded questions from a strange instant messenger screen name. He was not notified prior to the actual interview and therefore had no time to prepare, sort of like he was in a soundproof booth. Let’s see what the result was:

Evan Kessler: So I have a few questions I’ve been dying to ask you

Adam Starling: Fire away, strange Internet person!

Evan Kessler:
Why here? Why now?

Adam Starling:
Because this is the place, and this is the time.

Adam Starling: Who’s this? Evan?

Adam Starling: What’s the question?

Evan Kessler: Describe the essence of Adam Starling in 4 sentences or more, or less

Adam Starling: Right… who’s this?

Adam Starling: Evan? Yea or nay?

Evan Kessler:

Adam Starling:

Adam Starling: So, who am I?

Evan Kessler: yes

Evan Kessler: and why here? why now?

Adam Starling:
Adam Starling is the last sane man.

Adam Starling: Adam Starling believes in doing the right thing, except for when the wrong thing seems like too much fun, or when he lacks the moral fiber to resist such temptations, or when the repercussions don’t prohibitively outweigh the benefits.

Adam Starling: Adam Starling believes in traditional American ethics and eschews the shallow pursuit of hollow, ultimately meaningless goals.

Evan Kessler: and why does Adam Starling refer to himself in the third person?

Adam Starling: Adam Starling believes in speaking for posterity and, as such, utilizes the third-person narrative voice in the hopes that his edicts will not one day read as dated. His statements are eternal. So to speak in the first-person.

Adam Starling:
Whoop. Cut out those last six-and-a-half words.

Evan Kessler:
This is an awful interview, how do you account for that?

Adam Starling: I only give 77%.

Adam Starling:
Adam Starling doesn’t believe in cliche pep talks or unrealistic goals.

Evan Kessler:
Well that’s very honest of you and I appreciate you not blaming it on the interviewer’s poor preparation

Adam Starling: Honesty is Job 1.

Adam Starling:
Oh, no, wait— Customer Satisfaction is Job 1.

Adam Starling: Shit, no– I have it backwards.

Adam Starling: Worker Safety is Job 1, Customer Satisfaction is Job 2.

Adam Starling: And Honesty checks in at Job 3.

Adam Starling:
So, for what that’s worth.

Evan Kessler: Is that why you’re always wearing safety goggles at work?

Evan Kessler: Or are those just your nerdy glasses?

Adam Starling: No, that’s because my eyes are insured by Lloyd’s of London for three-quarter of a million pounds. (I’m a mascara model).

Evan Kessler: Do you find anything funny about the headline “Hand Injures Back”?

Adam Starling: Man… You just blew my mind.

Evan Kessler:
Do you think the reason bunnies are part of Easter is because Christ was in fact reincarnated in the body of a bunny?

Adam Starling:
No, I happen to know that’s bullshit. The real reason is because, as a close reading of Paul’s Letter to the Corinthians will reveal, J.C. was more often than not chomping on a carrot when he preached, using it as a prop to emphasize certain points in his parables, wagging it at people when he got off a good zinger and such. You know how it is. People hear you like carrots and they start coming up with tortured “bunny” metaphors. Christ suffered for us.

Evan Kessler:
I don’t buy that for one second. How has EvanKessler.com changed your life?

Adam Starling:
Because, to paraphrase the Japanese Admiral Yamamoto upon hearing of the succesful bombing of Pearl Harbor, “…we have awakened a sleeping giant and filled him with a terrible resolve.” Be ready for http://www.adamstarling.com, coming soon.

Evan Kessler: That wasn’t a question you could really answer with because, but anyway, one final question. If a tree fell in the woods would Superman hear it? Or would The Flash get there just in time to sort of get underneath it to soften the sound even though he couldn’t stop it from falling because he’s fast but not strong?

Adam Starling: But hey, if you link to my site, one day, be sure you warn your readers not to check it at work, you know, on account of 95% of it is just various animals getting it on.

Evan Kessler: answer the question

Adam Starling: I don’t like taking sides. Either one of those two fellows make for a powerful enemy.

Evan Kessler: Fair enough. Thank you for taking part in the http://www.evankessler.com Guerilla interview, where the unsuspecting start suspecting early on in the conversation that they are in fact being interviewed.

Adam Starling: Thank you. It’s been harrowing.

Evan Kessler: you are welcome

Adam Starling: Is it over? And why did I have to put on makeup for a print interview?

Evan Kessler: I just like it when you make yourself up nice, that’s all.


If you would like to be interviewed by Evan Kessler for the next installment of this section please email me. Otherwise, be prepared to be unprepared for an EvanKessler.com guerilla interview.

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Congratulations, Now Don’t Kill Anybody.

Posted by evankessler on June 16, 2004

Wow! Congratulations to the Detroit Pistons for winning the NBA Championship. I’d also like to send out my condolences in advance to all the families who lose loved ones in the ensuing riots.

P.S. Just because your team wins doesn’t mean you should be flipping cars over and setting things on fire.

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Teen & A

Posted by evankessler on June 15, 2004

The headline of Today’s New York Post ran a story on the front page about how parent’s are getting their daughter’s breast implants as graduation gifts. Some people might argue that this is not front page news. I disagree. I think this is very important news. The headline read “Cup & Gown: Breast jobs new grad fad for girls”. Here’s how I think it should have read: “The Entire World Has Officially Gone Fucking Insane: Father Buys 18 yr old Daughter breast implants so she can attract more attention from the opposite sex and get laid more.” I don’t really know where I’m going with this other than, what happened to just getting your kid their 1st car. Or did she already have that. And what parent in their right mind is going to let their kid appear on the front page of the New York Post talking about how their parents let them get breast implants and mention them by name!!! Wow!!! $6,750 for a boob job for the girl who already has everything, well except for a C cup. Sorry, that article just blew my mind, so I had to mention it. I feel sorry for the parents for being so stupid and so much at the mercy of their teenage daughter. I wonder if that kid ever heard the word no in her life. I could expound on this topic and I’m sure it would be welcome but I think we all know how ludicrous this is.

Other than that front page calamity, not much of note really happened today other than I realized that I sing too much. I sing everywhere; In the shower; in the halls at work, probably in the subway, as I walk down the street. Not that I’ve never realized this before, but I always sort of wondered if it was annoying to anyone. I’ve never really been told it was, in fact I once had a former roommate tell me that he missed me injecting his name into whatever song I was singing as I walked through the apartment, but I couldn’t tell if he was being sarcastic. Some mornings I’ll be in the shower and halfway through the Old 97’s Too Far To Care Album in my head and I won’t realize I’m singing it. I think I’m being quiet because my roommate is sleeping in the next room but halfway through my shower I realize for the last 15 seconds I’ve been belting out Barrier Reef or Pulp’s “Bad Cover Version” and then I sort of try to muffle myself and think, I hope I didn’t wake anyone up.

Other times I’ll be walking down the street with my Ipod and just listening to a song that’s so good that you just can’t help but sing along. For instance when I was walking to the gym and Aimee Mann’s “4th of July” came on (aah the wonderful randomness of the Ipod) and I realized I was blurting out “Today’s the 4th of July. Another June has gone by…” Then I saw someone walking close to me and got slightly embarrassed because I had no idea how out of tune I may have been. I also came to the conclusion that that song is probably one of my favorites of all time. However, that notion occurs to me with about 15 different songs a day. Maybe I should make a list page of favorite songs, movies and what not. Not that anyone should really care what I like. I don’t really care that much about anyone else likes and it would be kind of self serving. Okay, I’m sold. I’ll do it.

Anyway, lucky for me I’m going to see Aimee Mann at St. Anne’s Warehouse next week. I’m really excited. I seem like a giddy schoolboy or something but I sort of get that way when I see one of my favorite artists who I’ve never seen before. Can you imagine me being giddy? Imagine me normally, all pseudo-stoned like. Keep that mental picture. That’s what I look like when I’m giddy. Maybe I’ll write a review for it the next day, but I’ll probably be too lazy. Even though you don’t care I’m going to paste the lyrics of this wonderful song for no apparent reason. It’s just one of those songs you listen to and think, how could anyone be this talented. And then you come to the depressing conclusion that you’ll never be that talented. Not that I’m a songwriter or anything. , Read it and see for yourself but you’d probably get it more if you heard it so go to http://www.aimeemann.com/

“Today’s the fourth of July
another June has gone by
and when they light up our town
I just think
what a waste of gunpowder and sky

I’m certain that I am alone

in harbouring thoughts of our home

it’s one of my faults that I can’t quell my past

I ought to have gotten it gone

Oh, baby, I wonder –
if when you are older –


you’ll wake up
and say,
‘My God, I should have told her –

what would it take?

But now here I am and the world’s gotten colder

and she’s got the river down which I sold her.

So that’s today’s memory lane
with all the pathos and pain

another chapter in a book where the chapters are endless

and they’re always the same

a verse, then a verse, and refrain

Oh, baby, I wonder –
if when you are older –

you’ll wake up

and say, ‘My God, I should have told her
what would it take?
But now here I am and the world’s gotten colder

and she’s got the river down which I sold her.”

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Krishna, Krishna

Posted by evankessler on June 12, 2004

My normal Saturday afternoon summer routine consists of strolling through the village listening to music and just observing people. I like it this way. It’s sort of the necessary me time before Saturday evening’s events. Today I took a stroll through the street fair on Bleecker Street and eventually made my way up to Washington Square Park. As I entered the middle of the park I realized there was some sort of festival, and upon further investigation (that means I took a few more steps) I discovered it was an Indian Cultural Festival, but when I looked around the majority of the people I saw were white and resembled David Leisure (Joe Isuzu) in Airplane!. At what point did we decide to stop co-opting black culture and latch onto Indian culture. Not that I have a problem with Indian culture. I just didn’t realize that the entire culture consisted solely of white people who follow the Hare Krishna religion. I’m not claiming to know much about the current culture of India. I know there’s a lot of people in India. So basically I’m pleading complete ignorance. I actually really enjoyed the festival, well at least the people watching aspect of it. There were booths on reincarnation, vegetarianism, and a free feast for a small donation. There was even two stages with music. However, here was the part that was troubling, one of the white dude sort of hippie krishnas was performing on the stage and singing about how he’s not a terrorist who blows up things but if you call him names he’ll yell at you really loud and beat his chest. This is paraphrased of course but those are some of the actual ideas he conveyed. People like that should have their guitars taken away. At no point in this guy’s life was he in danger of being labeled a terrorist. Seriously bad stuff, and his music was louder than my Ipod so he was in serious violation of the Evan Tolerance code. Despite the annoyance there were plenty of positives including an Indian dance presentation and Indian food, as well as some of the most beautiful girls in their traditional Hare Krishna garb and bejeweled foreheads. I hope nobody took that as being misogynist, I didn’t call them smokin’ Hare Krishna bitches. I just thought some of them were absolutely beautiful. I love weekends.

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