The Long March by bart plantenga

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The Long March

by bart plantenga


The meditation of the trail: Walk along looking at the trail at your feet and don’t look about and just fall into a trance as the ground zips by. 

• Jack Kerouac

Don’t fall asleep on the Metro-North Train out of Grand Central late at night or you’ll end up somewhere you never in a million years thought you’d end up with the midnight hour approaching. If you’d been on that train, you could have heard me repeating the late-night mantra STAY AWAKE DON’T FALL ASLEEP … over and over and despite – or precisely BECAUSE of! – this mantra, and despite me imploring myself to stand up, go through your wallet, retie your shoe, make a list … I indeed conked out, clueless to the world and was only startled awake when a valise thudded against my seat, just as the signs flashed Ardsley-on-Hudson. I managed to gather whatever wits I had left and leapt out just as the doors began to squeeze shut in … uh… Tarrytown! Overshooting my destination, Dobbs Ferry, by about 5 or 6 miles to the south.

I’d gone to Manhattan to see the prog-grass band Girls on Grass, 2 Brooklyn women – and bassist friend Dave. Only something special can drag me out these days to the past-sell-by-date East Village to engage in that most consumerist of sidewalk dances: the shuffle-app-selfie-click-ice-cream-lick-dance. So only when: 1. my critical capacities tip below zero; or 2. when a friend is playing in a girl band at HiFi, which inhabits the ghostly space of the formerly renowned Brownie’s …

Girl on Grass in HiFi

And as I am about to tell you the rest of this tale, I again hear my partner’s voice of reason whispering sternly into my ear: Do not advertise your stupidity or drunkenness – not charming and not a career maker. Not her actual voice but the one my mind has filed on a mental mp3 under Disapproval/Admonish/Raised Eyebrows.

But I’m hardwired to tell stories like this because humility forges a crooked and poorly marked trail to nirvana, or some place like that. When I encounter an error of judgement nourished by alcohol [not too much, just the right measure I thought], it usually incites impetuous, flakey reactions on my part. Rather than wait for the next train down the track, I decided to walk home. By walking back I mean like walking 2 hours to atone. It’s like winding a tangle of yarn into a ball, a metaphor, you rightly notice, for my unraveled foibles. Yes, walk: It was 85∘with humidity at 120% – if that’s even possible. Whatever the numbers, it’s like walking the doggy paddle and the air is a swimming pool.

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Bad Karma: a short film by Jim Spring — based on Ron Kolm’s story by Mark McCawley

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Bad Karma:

a short film by Jim Spring


based on Ron Kolm’s story


by Mark McCawley


Bad Karma, directed by Jim Spring, dates from the mid-90s. It is taken from a short story written by Ron Kolm, first published in Michael Carter’s Redtape magazine. Jim Spring and Elana Fisher produced it, and the film was edited by Andrea Newhouse. The director of photography was David Morabito and the art director was Soraya Rashid. Patricia Dunnock played Jill, and Max Mankind played Duke. The two main characters sell magazines, etcetera, on the streets of the East Village. Kim Gordon’s band, Free Kitten, plays in the early part of the film, and Thurston Moore, of Sonic Youth, pushing a stroller in the crowd watches them. The film — much like Kolm’s Duke and Jill stories — captures a time and place in New York City that has all but disappeared. Read more

Arklight: a musical overview — by Mark McCawley

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a musical overview


by Mark McCawley

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Danny Kolm, Gregory Kolm and Max Kostaras are three twentysomethings who’ve lived their whole lives in Queens, NYC. Danny and Greg are brothers who started playing music together in 2003 under the name Arklight, releasing dozens of cassettes and Cdrs on small independent labels. Their early sound was a harsh mix of no wave noise, free jazz energy and punk psychedelia. Various friends filled in the lineup, with Danny playing guitar and Greg manning the drums, until 2013 when Max, a childhood friend and sometimes collaborator, became a permanent member on lead guitar. It was then that their sound shifted to reflect a burgeoning interest in songwriting, structure and improved musicianship. For inspiration, Arklight looked to the music they grew up on and loved, including Neil Young, Nirvana, Sonic Youth, Velvet Underground, Nick Cave and Beat Happening. They hope to continue their development and follow the muse wherever it may lead them.
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Kate Crash — in conversation with John Wisniewski

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Kate Crash

(Kate Crash & The UFO Club)

in conversation with

John Wisniewski

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“Musician, glam punk alien cross-dressing renegade
robot from the future, multi-media performance artist,
novelist, poet, director — Kate Crash is a punk
feminist with a DIY ethic. Whether it’s her music, her poetry,
her spoken word performance pieces, her fiction
or her documentary filmmaking — Crash’s glitter-speckled allegorical art
holds a unique mirror up to the present day decay and decadence of Los Angeles
in her search for her own personal authentic amid L.A’s streets of broken dreams
and almost realized celluloid fantasies.”


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Mary — a film by Yarre Stooker

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a film by

Yarre Stooker



“Eddie Woods writes poetry the way he lives life, intensely. Experience informs his art, and vice versa. Passion, raw edges, nothing left out. Sex, love, politics…coupled with an unrelenting drive towards awareness, the need to understand what universal reality is all about. His poem “Mary” enters the listener’s ears like a wordbomb, exploding inside the mind, and reverberates down the spine like electroshocks from the brain’s pleasure centre.”

— Mark McCawley (from Mary by Eddie Woods, Urban Graffiti, March 8, 2012)

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