Saturday, November 17, 2007

Nap Boy and Writer's Strike Videos

By Pauly
New York City

I always get sick when I return home to NYC. I felt blah on Thursday and knew what was coming. I couldn't stop it. When I woke up on Friday, the blahs morphed into the fuckin' blahs. I decided not to run and instead, I read for an hour. I ate my Grape Nuts sludge for breakfast and could not stop thinking about real food. I've been hungry ever since I went back on the low-carb diet.

I turned on the radio and listened to WFUV (Fordham University) which eventually motivated me to pound the keys. I wrote about 2,000 words and then popped some cold medicine. The Sudafed made me drowsy and I took a nap as I fell asleep to random Beatles tunes. I never take naps. Yet, there I was at 1pm napping for two hours. I eventually woke up a couple of hours later. I still felt like shit. I printed up what I wrote and made a few corrections.

The Joker called me and spoke about the future of the Phish and music blog. I told him that unless Phish gets back together, there's simply not enough material to make it an everyday Phish blog unless we continue to expand. Most of the content over the last two or so years has been about shows and concerts we attended (Phish-related or not). It's technically a group blog although the majority of other members don't post regularly. The Joker vowed to post as much as he could over the next few weeks as we try to take the project to a new level. I'm glad that he's stepping up. Although I don't think I can ever get the music blog as popular as the Tao of Poker, that's not our goal. We're just going to try a few different things and keep it updated five times a week in an attempt to build a broader community of other music lovers. Let's hope it works.

I wrote another 800 or so words and finished up with a total of 2,880 or so for the day. Not too shabby considering I felt sick most of the day, got off to a late start, and took a nap for two hours.

I met my brother for dinner and we ate pizza. I was so hungry that I ate three slices. I forgot that I had signed up for a poker tournament and played in that for like 2.5 hours before I busted out like 547 out of 1057 players. I played some cash games and won $150 inside of 15 minutes so I quit.

After that, I just sat around and dug through an old box filled with CDs. I found all of these cool bootlegs that I had been missing like two sizzling Medeski, Martin & Wood shows. One featured Trey Anastasio on guitar (circa 2000) and the other had John Scofield on guitar in a show they did in Holland in 1998.

I also found a ton of old Dead bootlegs on CD such as their infamous Giza show from the pyramids in Egypt and a ton of material from 1977, the year that I think the Dead achieved absolute perfection. Ironically, twenty years later many Phisheads point to late 1997 and the Year of the Funk as the exact point in the cosmos when Phish achieved perfection. I'd like to think that they started to hit their stride about ten years ago and that lasted until late 1999.

I also found a couple of CDs featuring Miles Davis from Paris and a couple of Widespread Panic shows from Germany and Belgium. Talk about stumbling onto some gems. Instead of writing, I spent most of Friday night listening to selections from those CDs I discovered. It was like having conversations with old friends. I was flooded by waves and waves of flashbacks and memories. I set aside a dozen or so discs and uploaded them to my iPod. I want to not have some of those precious musical moments with me at all times when I'm on the road.

On Saturday morning, I woke up and ran for about twenty minutes before I stopped and walked for the last thirty minutes. My shins were still hurting a bit and it sucked running with a runny nose. But man, it was chilly this morning, in the low 40s. I should have not been outside since I was still blah, but I really needed to. Over the long term, running gets my body into shape and repairs all the damage I did to it over the last year. However, over the short term, the best part about running is clearing my head and thinking about what I want to write about when I get back home. By the time I sit down and hammer away at the laptop, the first draft has already been written inside my head.

I had a small mountain of change and coins to sort through including currency from the US, Canada, Australia, the UK, Sweden, and the almighty Euro. I quickly picked out the US coins and plucked out $2 in quarters. That's perfect for laundry. I stopped buying newspapers, so the remaining change gets donated to Nicky's LA parking fund which I refill every time I get into her car. I had a couple of pounds worth of British money and a couple of random coins of Aussie change. The Swedish money is odd looking and I have several hundred Kronors and I have no idea if that's worth anything. I made a tiny monument and stacked them as high as I could. If/when I return to Sweden, I'll have some pocket change.

Then the Euros... I have been sitting on a few grand in hard currency (bills). That's gone up in value since I left Europe in September. But I forgot about the loose change. I had 5.75 in Euros. Since the dollar is getting hammered, that amount is worth like $3,000 US or something outrageous like that. (Editor's Note: Before I have a couple of smartass readers correct my math in an email or comment, you guys literally have no sense of hyperbole or exaggeration for comedic purposes, I know the exact amount what the Euro/US conversion. Roughly 5.75 Euros is closer to $2,700 US.) Who knew that a few coins that most Europeans toss away at bums, street performers, and lepers were worth more than what someone at Walmart makes in an entire month.

I reluctantly dicked around before I finally decided to write. I read some of Let It Blurt and I have been reading about 10-15 pages of Live from New York every day since I've been back. Right now, I'm up to the second or third show of the first year of Saturday Night Live, which was originally called Saturday Night. I forgot that the first episode had four musical numbers and only a handful of sketches. George Carlin hosted the first show and did three stand up spots. Interesting to see how that show evolved over the first season and eventually into the show/format that we see today.

In the previous ten months, I would force myself to write due to time constraints. I'd be like, "Shit I only have two hours... get to work." But now, I have the entire day to write, so I can ease into it. That's why I wrote this post first before I started the frenzy of pounding the keys until my neck got sore and I needed a break.

I got a huge chuckle when I saw this video by the striking writers from the Daily Show. I noticed that Wil blogged about it too.

Click here to view the writer's strike video... via Bloglines or RSS

Stop by the Untied Hollywood blog for all your WGA writer's strike news and videos.

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