New York City, baby.

Friday, December 19, 2003


As long as Paris Hilton has enjoyed a charge account at Barneys, Blubox has been making Oscar Predictions. But now, after decades of insight unrewarded, it looks like we could actually get paid for our divine Oscar-winner picking powers.

That's right. We made a wager with the folks at that Mystic River would be nominated for Best Picture while Lost In Translation would be shut out. LS bet the opposite would happen. Now we shall see who will be out five dollars.

My ace reputation as an Oscar prognosticator derives not from my deftness judging the quality of each film. In fact, I've heard mixed reviews about Mystic River. In fact, I've never even seen Mystic River.

That's the beauty of predicting The Oscars: seeing the movies isn't necessary. When we were young we would root for which film we thought was the best, but the annual agony of watching obviously better films get shafted led us to a sense of emotional deattachment that made us the skilled predictor we are today.

When you can start making assumptions based on prior voting tendencies, you know you need help. On that note, here are my Oscar Picks for 2003.

Best Picture

Mystic River
Cold Mountain
Lord Of The Rings
Master and Commander

Winner: Lord Of The Rings

Best Director: Peter Jackson

Best Actor: Sean Penn

Best Actress: Nicole Kidman

Best Original Screenplay: Lost In Translation

Best Adapted Screenplay: Cold Mountain

Tuesday, December 09, 2003



Letting each other know that you are "in the club" is all that really matters. Or that you were "in the club", but now you're not. It's the turning-thirty-still-in-New-York-grandfather clause.

It no longer matters what that club believes, or if that club believes anything. It's not about chasing ideas, it's about capturing comfort.

The comfort that comes from belonging and simultaneously not belonging; of staying connected with your small group of friends (and could-probably-be-my-friends-if-I-knew-them) while disconnecting from the scary, incomprehensible, beyond repair world of Bush/Cheney.

For those critical thought-ed out, who realize that all that brainwork has got us nowhere, and the endless stream of wisdom from elders, on the TV, in the paper, at the dinner table, has got us/world nowhere, we seek only a peaceful feeling, and perhaps the simple pleasure of watching Paris Hilton milk cows.

After all, was the hipster thing ever more than a revolution born on the Lower East Side from those born on the Upper East Side? (Who put out The Strokes' first album? A young Phil Graham? Malcolm McLaren? Nope. RCA Records).

To ask for nothing more than mellow companionship/a decent rental from Blockbuster/a football game in snow suddenly feels smart. Something or someone to help while we wade through the shit, which can get up to our necks at times.

The decision was made not to sell out: but after seven years you stop talking about it. The romance is gone. For the hipster perhaps it remains. But at a certain points it’s simply about dealing with the consequence of those choices.

“Be true to yourself” is more punishing than it sounded when Kobe said it while holding up a bottle of Sprite and grinning.

There’s a luxury about being a hipster; the ability to concern yourself with that which is hip or new or cool.

The hipster is no longer a hipster the day when that’s the last thing on his mind.

Thursday, December 04, 2003



While reveling in the discrimate purchase of CDs from the likes of The Strokes, The White Stripes and Wilco (key note: fairly early on), the trucker cap sits uneasily upon our head.

While not a full fledge hipster, we picked from the hipster buffet, taking the parts we wanted to add to our New England anti-prepster prepster with an edge plate; it was handmade in high school and has undergone yearly renovations, making it marginally less recognizable.

So while not appearing to look like a stereotypical hipster, with his perfect floppy haircut and corduroy jeans, we can not escape the influence of the quasi-culture on us, while at the same time wondering what we are instead?

Living in New York City and trying to make it as a writer, that makes you something. Besides broke, that is. Being around other fun-loving, hyper-aware people our age since college, that does something to you to. Besides breed complacency, that is.

But we are growing out of that clever-clever stage, that trying so hard at everything, including the art of looking like you're not trying so hard stage.

Perhaps you never get rid of that self completely - we're always going to get excited to hear that new Swedish disco-acoustic rock band. El Presidente will always taste better than Coors and reading the Sunday Styles Section over a bowl of granola in a funky cafe will never get tiresome.

While we are not hipsters, in the full aesthetic meaning of the word, we are part of something that is tied to, but goes beyond, savvy and post-modern -- an age group actively TRYing to craft a life full of meaning and non-meaning, separate from our parents, but in some way connected with our friends.

Or is it white educated youth finally figuring out the ultimate conundrum -- how to swim in the mainstream culture (where the money is) and not end up with that repulsive stink of being ridiculous.

Not as tricky a maneuver as it sounds. It's as simple as letting others know your ethos, your attitude about things. And how do you do that? Buy the first round and wear Rod Laver tennis shoes.

At this point in our lives, if you're not an overtly offensive twit, it doesn't matter what you do, how you look, or where that beer you're buying us is bought.

Two guys in a dive bar on Stanton Street-- discussing Kafka? discussing politics? or discussing the new episode of Punk'd?

What happens when the ideas -- the curiousity -- they recede, or if you will, are trampled by the hardships of survival, when hyper-savvy media awareness and an asymmetrical eighties hairdo is all that remains?

Discontentment, of a spiritual and not a practical nature, sometimes we actually miss thee: letting us know that the difference between the hipster and the writer with hipster tendencies is not the attitude, but the weight one places on their denim jacketed shoulders.

Wednesday, December 03, 2003



It's fun to see hipsters on the street. The ones who live in Williamsburg, eat Middle-eastern cuisine on Avenue C, wear tailored suit jackets with vintage tee-shirts, and exhibit 1970s Paul McCartney solo period beards.

But if we're not them, then what are we?

Some will say the sound you hear is the last nail being hammered into the coffin of the hipster. Like those that came before him -- the grungster, the goth, the mod, the punk, and the hippie -- the hipster has entered the final stages of its existence.

Time to bring out the "co-opt" word. As we all know, when the media starts co-opting, it's time to start looking for a carcass.

The theory holds that said subculture, with it's anti-social and anti-corporate views, are reappropriated (ahhh, reappropriation, no, no!!) by the mainstream to sell products and quell Suzie's rebellious tendencies.

Let her look like the drummer for the Donnas, she still cares more about her carb intake than exposing the big lie her mother has indoctrinated her into.

What makes the hipster "revolution" unique is that unlike all those other subcultures, it never had an anti-social and anti-corporate view to be co-opted by the media.

Being a hipster was never about rebelling, it was about perfecting the "rebel look". The skin of Greg Allman, the soul of an eggplant.

So did we ever fall into the hipster category? With the exception of those vintage ski turtlenecks with the front zipper we raided from the attic and brought back with us to the city, the clothes would say no.

Lifestyle choices would suggest a closer link, such as going to the cool LES bars. But what made them cool, in part, was the lack of hipsters.

Doesn't the avoidance of hipsters make you something besides a hipster?

Or does it just make you even more of a hipster?

Monday, December 01, 2003

Blubox's search for employment via Craigslist New York unearthed this tantalizing proposition:

Our comedy based company is looking for customer service representatives who possess unique skills. We are a small company with 100's of clients from various companies. Companies sometimes are complete rivals against each other, so many vulnerable companies turn to us for help. So as part of the customer service team, it will be your job to make prank calls to these companies and to basically "bust their chops". If you are interested in this position, an open mind and unique talent needed. Thank you for your interest in this position.

Blubox has the open mind and the unique talent, but we fear our chop-busting skills could sink our prospects.