Monday, 30 June 2014

Love is a Dog From Hell/ Bukowski Reimagined.

Bukowski reimagined.
Because he may have been my favourite drunk and because I want to hang out with him.
Maybe he would say achingly obvious, wise things or maybe he would be crabby and Neruda would laugh at us both.

The Crunch maybe one of his finest works, so here's my not so fine interpretation of what it would look like today.


there is an emptiness inside her so great
that you can see it in the furious movement of
a thumb scrolling down a fluorescent screen.

people so fevered
either by all the Likes or none at all.

people are just not good to each other.

people don't make sense of each other
across a table
or notice brown, lit-up freckles on a rounded nose
without the affirmation of a #nofilter #tbt.

the Instagrammers are not good to the Bloggers
the Snapchatters are not good to the texters.

we are afraid.

Steve Jobs tells us
that we can all be
big-ass winners.

he hasn't told us
about the gutters
or the suicides.

or the terror of one person
aching in one place

unspoken to

waiting for a notification.

people are not good to each other.
people are not good to each other.
people are not good to each other.

I suppose they never will be. I don't ask them to be.

But sometimes I think about it.

The computers will suffocate, brunches will no longer be chronicled
and the world will snap into two along a fault-line where the DSL wires are buried deep.

too many too little.
too active too much of a troller too nobody.

more logged in than in love.

people are not good to each other.
perhaps if they were
our newsfeeds would be less cluttered.


(because my poetry is messed up prose, really. And read if you haven't)

Thursday, 12 June 2014

23 Reasons Why Everyone Suddenly Loves Lists

1. Because lists are the new short stories.

2. Because short stories are the new novels.

3. Because the last time you saw a novel was when you were using it as a paper –weight.

4. Because less words and more Emojis. 

5. Because the words “LOL”, “ammirite” , “jkbabez” make more sense on a list than in a 700 page novel. 

6. Because ADD became cool. 

7. Because gifs about flying leaves help you understand autumn more than Hemingway, when he said-
You expected to be sad in the fall. Part of you died each year when the leaves fell from the trees and their branches were bare against the wind and the cold, wintery light."
(Bro, be trippin' on E!)

8. Because you’ve managed to read so far without thinking of cupcakes. 

9. Because I just made you think of cupcakes. 

10. Because now you’re hungry but you can finish this article and still have time for a second lunch.
Unlike a book which might interfere with your meal schedule.

11. Because now your friend who never read, can regularly share articles about “10 reasons you should date a girl who reads” on your timeline. Ammirite? JKBabez.

12.Because you’ve worked in an office so long that unless something is numbered you don’t register it.

13.Because lists=gifs=you being able to LOL. 

14. Because saying “LOL” as a review of a book or a short story will make you look retarded and illiterate.

15. Because people working at Buzzfeed have jobs which pay taxes.

16. Ok, they don’t. But those Buzzfeed interns deserve to be fed with sandwiches. 

17. Because you’ve wanted to be Type A all your life, and reading these list is the closest you’re getting to it.

18. Because you express your dynamic personality via links. And #tags.  #hereiam #thisisme #theresnowhereelseidratherbe.

19. Because you’re against personality quizzes and slam-books (thankfully, those died in the 1990s- Now to attack the crocs). 

20. Because you can practice how to count with a list. (Currently you’re on number 20, after which comes21. There! now you’re the new Beautiful Mind around).

21. Because Facebook Likes had already cured the world of AIDS, what else was there to do?

22. Because while the rest of your life is falling apart in marvellous chaos, some things should come neatly structured. 

23. Because I was too lazy to write an actual blog post and so this list will have to do.

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

New York, New York

(Suggested Listening: Sinatra here. There's cheesy and then there's classic.)

Living and loving a city is not that different from loving a person.

Being familiar with unduly curves on a body and the odd but distinct placement of a mole gives you as much ownership as knowing about an underground book store makes a city yours. You could spend a decade with someone or have a heady four month relationship and yet never truly quantify which symbolised greater love and passion. And so it is with cities.

I remember discussing this with a friend who lived in London a year longer than I did, and why that made it more hers more than mine. And years later, why two weeks in New York feel as familiar as those years anywhere else.

                          (Fences can't keep the truly wild in. Or out. While walking up the Museum Mile)

But that's what we forget. Two week, eight months, two years or even ten - New York's not going to belong to you. Though you'll make sure you tell everyone who'll hear, that you belong to it. Maybe it almost works because there are around 20 million people on that island attempting the same thing. 
Of course most of them are pissed off daily. I'm guessing it’s because the damned island won't commit.

I didn't get off the plane looking for a relationship with the city; I knew I'd be leaving soon enough. But when did relationships start with contemplation and a well-timed heads-up?

(The Standard Hotel Rooftop: Of skylines which remind you of soaring hearts)

Especially when it involves a city which stretches out every morning with a strong smell of coffee, impatience, lost dreams and new plans. Where Sunday afternoons are almost entirely made up of pancakes with blueberries and mimosas.
Where the coffee, like its cocktails is stiff, tall and if you're living and renting in this city, almost enough to substitute a meal.
A gigantic park here, houses Whimsy (slabs of quotes from Alice in Wonderland), Memories (of Yoko+John and Strawberry Fields) and Practicality (save money by cutting East to West in the city through the park) in the span of 5kms (or miles, if you've even subscribed to their metric system). Whimsy, Memories and Practicality are also the names you've given to the tenants in your apartment building- those you only manage to wave to while rushing in and out.

In this city, you can only walk so far without running head-first into a bar, a homeless man or another Kate Spade outlet.
Of course, most New Yorkers don't have time to look up and notice either. But they will have time to run through abandoned warehouses turned into a set for a play, or on the Highline when the sun's out, clothes are off and hybrid arm-bands help you wear your ipod and your heart on your sleeve.
Tourists on the other hand can be found around Times Square, MoMA, Tom's Restaurant (from Seinfeld) or smiling and talking too much on the L Train.

There's nothing you can't buy in New York, except love. But most nights a good lap dance feels like the same thing, I've been told. If you stop long enough to catch your breath, you might see that this city- its’ museums, stunning views and endless walks- seems to be designed for single people everywhere. To find, immerse and lose themselves in crowds, parks, works of art that you can't bear to look at directly, meals for one so big that they’re begging to be shared and a winter harsh enough to remind you of the benefits of body heat.
But you're not going to find love here. No, not even the Woody Allen version.

                         (Love notes scribbled everywhere you don't expect them to be. Soho)

If you’re lucky and looking up though, other things might happen, like they did with me:
Friendly strangers will hand you charcoal sketches they made of you in the train when you weren't looking; a crazy subway lady will sit with a big plastic bag around her head reminding you of the apocalypse; your phone will go off in the middle of the night declaring a State emergency and lookout for a Honda Civic which abducted a young child. You'll take the uptown train instead of the downtown one and end up at Jackson Heights at one am and miraculously not get mugged or murdered; your friend will more often than not charm her way into free yoghurt at the neighbourhood deli; you'll have margaritas which even your hardened 20-something system will not be able to stomach.

You'll never have had your fill of coffee or Central Park or mustered the sheer will to join the line for the Empire State observatory deck. You’ll somehow manage to fit gigantic bread baskets on the ridiculously tiny Balthazar tables; you’ll get drenched just to get a stunning Instagram of the city’s skyline in the rain; you’ll bemoan constantly how you don’t have enough time to see everything.

You’ll fall in love with stationary and remind yourself that going back home with four notebooks is impractical and silly. You’ll never have enough time or money.

And so you’ll leave New York, like you'd leave a lover. Having tried to bend to become its, but never really succeeding in making it yours.

Pro tip: keep their oversized, I heart NY t-shirt, it fits you better anyway.

                                           (With Lennon at Strawberry Fields, Let It Be)