Saturday, June 28, 2008

Making Something out of Nothing, the Need to Express, to Communicate, to Going Against the Grain, Going Insane

i. Shootin' Some B -Ball Outside of the School
The Rockford Peaches have nowhere to go from here but up, up, UP and away. As Carly pointed out, we scored twice as many points in the second half (8) than in the first (4), which's a two hundred percent improvement. At this rate, we'll be up to fighting numbers by the season's end.

Personally, I don't know exactly how to "shoot a basketball," and one of those bitches punched Alex in the face within 30 seconds of the game's commencement and made Alex bleed. Luckily for everyone, Alex isn't carrying any contagious diseases ... yet.

Why'd they punch Alex in the face? I don't know, but maybe 'cause Alex yelled: "I can't tell who I have, they all look the same!" after running onto the court. (JK, they didn't hear her say that. They hit her in the face 'cause other people suck.)

Me: "How do I talk about this game in my blog without sounding racist? I mean -- like -- "
Cait & Carly: "You can't."
Me: "So I should just go for it, like Lozo-style, just rush it all the way?"
You: "You have to."
Everyone We Know: "Yup."

The other team was all Asian girls. For those of you not from America, professional athletes still play in segregated leagues here, but instead of messing around within a sport, they just segregate the entire sport. You follow? Like white people got hockey, etc. Along with the Jews (my people), the Japanese (this was the actual ethnicity of our opponents) are traditionally not ballers and cannot smoke fools like you and me on the b-ball court. [Actually though, the Jews were good athletes in the early 20th century 'cause they lived in the ghetto, which is where you learn how to play basketball. Then they all became rich and had baybays and their baybabys grew up and now they run about in kitten heels on the teevee on reality shows about rich women and/or rich children who say mean things to the maid.] Anyhow when we saw the other team, we thought "Hey, maybe we have a chance."

Ok grasshoppers, this is what we call "stereotyping," which is wrong and unfair and evil, like assuming that all lesbians are psychos or that women are not as smart as men. What happens when you practice this type of behavior besides -- obviously -- ruining America and Freedom? You get your asses kicked by the Asian Invasion. I mean, pummeled. Just really beat. I didn't contribute much to one side or the other, as I discovered that running back and forth really takes the wind out of ya'. However, it wasn't really stereotyping, it was applying statistical knowledge to predict the outcome of a situation, like I [would've] learned [if I'd paid attention] in Science class. Whatevs, obvs the G-ds of basketball think otherwise.

Also, what we need is just one REALLY GOOD PLAYER. Like a sort of female Michael Jordan or even a female Chris Webber, or I mean seriously we'd take a female Larry Bird too. So if you fit that description and live in the NY area, we need you to come in, and do all the work while we trot behind you like disciples. Also Cait and Carly know how to play.

We need Sheryl Swoopes.
ii. Book Club Links

1. Junot on The Colbert Report:

2. Penguin's Feature with Junot Díaz
3. The Great American Pause: "When it comes to the novel, Americans are still willing to take it slow, or at least reward the writers who do ... Edward P Jones, Junot Díaz and Jeffrey Eugenides all took 11 years to write their Pulitzer prize-winning novels -a blink, really, when compared to Shirley Hazzard and Marilynne Robinson's 23-year gaps preceding The Great Fire and Gilead respectively." (@the guardian uk)
4. Novelist Junot Díaz Weaves Cultures and Languages (@PBS NewsHour)
5. Wao wins The Tournament of Books (@the morning news)
6. Into It : on what he's reading, listening to, and watching. (@cs monitor)
7. Chasing the Whale: A Profile of Junot Díaz (@poets & writers)
8. The National Book Critics Circle reviews Wao, (as a finalist in fiction). (@critical mass)
9 .Seven of Oh Seven: best book covers of 2008. Babypop, you win. (@fwis)
10. Slice's spotlight author - Junot Díaz. (@slice magazine)
11. An Interview with Junot Díaz @bookslut)
iii. quote me quote me quote me
I was writing about The New Fuck You last night so I started re-reading a lot of it. It's too precious to destroy with underlines. This is one thing I would underline though:
I agree to go. I don't have anything planned. I don't have anyone I have to see. At the very least, I guess, it won't be boring.

That’s why we do things, Julia and I. I like her about half the time.

We live together, so I have to see her. It’s easy that way. We’ve just discovered that our house is infested with mice, and it’s bringing us closer together.

(from "What She Gives Up," by Anne Reid)
iv. Amanda Palmer with the Boston Pops

Achtung, Baby! is one of my favorite places on the interwebs. Today, it introduced me to Amanda Palmer's (of The Dresden Dolls) solo career. I'm obsessed now. Here Palmer does What a Wonderful World with Boston Pops, Creep at Edinbergh, and In a Manner of Speaking.
v. Me Against the Electronic Music
You know what's weird? I feel like when I use the internet, I'm fighting with it. It wants to eat me alive & suck me up & make me dumb. I want to use it as cleanly and efficiently as possible. I don't want it to ruin my ability to deep read (per the Atlantic article) or waste hours on pointless pursuits.

But sometimes ... it does. The other day, Alex linked me to a video of the Tonys performance of In the Heights -- amazing. (Also I think I've envisioned the narrator of Wao to look like Lin-Manuel Miranda) The "related to" column encouraged me to view prior Tony performances, like Spring Awakening and Cabaret and this year's RENT and as I sat in my gym clothes with work piled up all around me I somehow found myself twenty minutes deep into this videos-of-musicals downward spiral.

I think rock bottom hit when I was voluntarily re-watching a clip from "The View" in which Rosie brings on an 11-year-old girl who's got Cystic Fibrosis and loves musicals and then surprises her by bringing on the Broadway cast of RENT to sing "Seasons of Love" with her. What can I say, I totes heart rock bottom. Am I listening to "No Day But Today" right now? Maybe.


Ms. Jackson said...

There was a point in my life when I was actually quite good at the b-ball. But as I got older and my peers got taller,(while I didn't so much) my height became a disadvantage. I might be able to distract the opponent with some good old fashioned trash talk though. It would probs go something like this:

Anyway, best of luck in your next game.

Dave Lozo said...

you lost to a team full of asians? that's hot and perplexing. you must've seemed like godzilla to them. couldn't you have just held the ball over your head while they pointlessly jumped to defend you?

a team full of lesbians vs. a team full of asian girls. my head might've exploded.

a;ex said...

FYI - the book cover link is effed up. And I always win, sweetheart! (Except when my opponents are asian apparently.)

eric mathew said...

first of all i love that alex said that. i actually loled like you know how people say lol but don't mean it like when a person talks to you for instance...

person: i'm thinking of you naked.
you: lol.

because you don't know what to say... but i actually did.

youtubing tony performances is an old past time for this cat. sometimes you need to see happier times. then when i get really bored i youtube the high school equivalent of the shows. lets just say i have seen my shares of own my owns and be our guests.

and the RENT clip, oh lord. i just need to see it pop up on youtube and start to cry.

you should have saaki bombed after the game, ya know to spite them.

caitlin said...

i feel like it was also unfair that they were yelling in japanese, like, seriously, how are we supposed to know what's going on when the opponents are talking crazy? also, when we were leaving and carly asked about the j in j-hoops being japanese i surriously almost died. i liked this post grasshopper. we better win on tuesday, i hate this losing nonsense.

jenn said...

oohh nooooo i so had you down for a win, ladies ladies how could you lose to the tiny women of japan??!!
All my hopes were on visiting the blog to a joy of victory (well ok i kind of knew u were gunna lose) but was looking forward to the winning tale, saying that the losing tale was just as fun if not a tad justified bitter!!
saw the colbert interview, what is a peabody? apart from the fit brit birds name in the l word??

better luck next time ladies.

Natalie J. said...

I'm thinking that The RPs will improve two hundredfold and do the diverse multi-racial queer community proud. Do you consider yourselves to be representing any one demographic? Have I just slandered your team?

Junot Diaz is kind of sexy.

stef said...

ok seriously, i thought alex vega was supposed to be some kind of tough puerto rican from the streets - wtf is this about her getting her ass kicked by asian chicks? vega!!! what the shit?! i'm very disappointed in you.

i mean ultimately, your namesake team wasn't so awesome either - at least until they learned the value of teamwork and secret signals and doing splits while catching the ball in their hats and other fancy things. "what if at a key moment in the game..." if you can't finish that sentence, i can't help you.

carlytron said...

a few things:

1) Riese like, headbutted a girl at the beginning of the 2nd half. I presume this was to avenge the nose-bashing of one Alex Vega.

2) The other team was of average height and was really strong and fast.

3) Our team is only like, half-gay.

4) Perhaps if someone's bosoms came flying out it would help us get a win.

Go Peaches!

riese said...

Ms. Jackson: Unfortunately, our team is already overstaturated with talent-deficient players who can talk a lot of trash. Much like Stewie, in fact. Babies who know a lot of stuff but can't do anything but bitch about it.

Dave Lozo: They were actually taller than everyone on our team except for Cait, Carly and I. Not that they were giants -- maybe they were mostly in the 5'4/5'5 range -- but we've got a lot of shorties.
If only you'd been there, we could've turned it all around.

a;ex: I fixed it! Yo auto-win.

eric mathew: I feel like your lol'ing story was really just a framework from which to make us curious about who was thinking about you naked. And it worked. The difference between you and me is that I'm not "in the industry" and therefore have no legitiamte excuse. Besides that I like to cry, apparently.
I've defo seen my share of "on my owns." But um, sometimes ... it still makes me cry! Saki bombs are a good way to feel better about anything.

caitlin: I know, I kept saying to the girl from our team that i don't know who was sitting next to me; "they're talking in their secret language! They're talking in secret language!" and she laughed politely, probs thinking that i was racist. She'll be back though. They always come back.
That is what the J was for, right?

jenn: I would say that having us down for a win is never a good idea.But next time, next time ... let it roll ... let it roll. The Peabody Awards honor excellence in radio and television broadcasting.

Natalie J: I think we're rapparesenting um ... a lot of white girls and one puerto rican who can't play basketball but have cute haircuts?
Agreed, re: Junot.

stef: Oh Alex was totally tough, you should've heard her yelling at the ref: "I DONT" KNOW who hit me! BUT THEY HIT ME IN THE FACE," like showing him the blood and everything. I was like, omg, the refs hate us already. I think she couldn't figure out who hit her because they all looked the same?
AND for the record, I made that titified suggestion to Caitlin (and also suggested, secondarily, that alex and i make out in the middle of the game) and she gave me the look she gives right before she says "Riese, I love you, but I need to take a time out from this conversation."

carlytron: The most amazing part of that was turning around to the bench and seeing that you guys were all already laughing at me! Also I was trying to inflict brain damage. And also possibly it's not my fault.
Our team can't decide if it likes boys or girls, we need Tila Tequila. Actually, for real, we need Lisa from Season Two. I bet she could kick some ass.

stef said...

unfortunately for you, you're gonna need my rack to pull off the all-the-way-mae maneuver, and i don't play basketball.

really, you guys need to figure out what your strengths are, and use those - i mean obviously playing basketball is not one of your team's strengths, but perhaps you can cause some kind of dyke drama among the girls on the other team? make them have a lot of feelings so they fumble the ball? uhh, do you fumble in basketball? this is why i don't play sports. I'VE BEEN TRADED TO RACINE.

i don't believe any of this vega hype anymore. i don't know what to believe in.

Dave Lozo said...

this is just like every other situation where you talk about how i don't come. i never get all the info, when i do it's way late, and you're wishy-washy about my actual coming and/or the actual situation itself.

unlike other men, i only come on demand.

eric mathew said...

i think all men want to picture me naked. i mean i have been going to the gym lately, just saying. on broadway world they have a thread about bway twins and Hav and Laura were there, and it wasn't even me who posted.

a;ex said...

Okay, it seems I have to defend my honor here. Srsly Stef, you're most welcome to come to our next game on Tuesday, where I think we'll actually have some people in the "audience" - which is surprising that people want to watch us lose...

Anyway, believe the hype! I totally got busted in the face and didn't even cry! I got right back in there and proceeded to get rebounds and play defense! Dammit!

Yeah, so umm they were tough asians for sure...

Crystal said...

Sounds like an amazing game. So when do we get to see video footage?

Bokolis said...

To further stereotypes, because, despite reports of human enlightenment, the world runs on them...way back when, it was actually believed that basketball was a game tailor-made for Jews to master. Without getting too technical, back before people could dunk (for practical purposes, back before they allowed black people to play), it was thought that guile (because, apparently, guile is necessary for crisp ball movement) was the most important trait to have in order to excel at basketball...and it was also thought that Jews had more "guile" than everybody else.

Read into that what you will, I'm just conveying insight.