Of the dozen or more ghosts reaching for you from darkened corners, the first to touch you is a tendrilled memory, a phantom scent of cinnamon and rye toast wafting up from the kitchen below. Layered beneath it, a taste of moss and paint chips. You fan the air in an attempt to fan the ghosts away. In the corner of your eye grey shape wearing a coat in the form of your great-grandfather bows its head and dissipates through the wall.
The farmhouse, older than certain states in the Union, makes a sound at your every step. Timbers shudder all the way down to their foundations. This whole mess could collapse in upon itself at any moment. You find the room where you slept your childhood summers, its wallpaper of zeppelins and kites and cranes sun-faded and loose like a cancerous skein of skin. Under the loose floorboard you pull out the cigar box that was your mission into this temple of doom. Carefully, as over a frozen lake whose ice may not hold, you retrace your steps through the dust and deeper into the bowels of the long-empited house.
On the porch, crouching over a bed of dead leaves and linden seeds, you open the cigar box to find what old treasures drove you to return in the first place. A horse’s tooth, a bullet casing, a tin Sopwith Camel, a half-dozen letters to an early crush that you never sent. You close the box, certain that there was more to it. Certain you’d forgotten something in the junk drawer of the past that was key to understanding who you were supposed to be in the present. Certain that a collection of boyhood trinkets were somehow more than that. Wind hisses through your teeth.
Behind you, in the house, the radio clicks. Calliope strains and a static wrinkle, notes of a dull razor run against the grain.
GPOY: Got a New Cardigan and You People Only Seem to Respond to Selfies Now, So Choke On Some Model Shots Edition.
I live in the American Gardens Building on W. 81st Street on the 11th floor. My name is Patrick Bateman. I’m 27 years old. I believe in taking care of myself and a balanced diet and rigorous exercise routine. In the morning if my face is a little puffy I’ll put on an ice pack while doing stomach crunches. I can do 1000 now. After I remove the ice pack I use a deep pore cleanser lotion. In the shower I use a water activated gel cleanser, then a honey almond body scrub, and on the face an exfoliating gel scrub. Then I apply an herb-mint facial mask which I leave on for 10 minutes while I prepare the rest of my routine. I always use an after shave lotion with little or no alcohol, because alcohol dries your face out and makes you look older. Then moisturizer, then an anti-aging eye balm followed by a final moisturizing protective lotion.
Recently, on the eve of the Oscars, got into a discussion with a friend whose fascination for Leo DiCaprio borders on rivaling mine for Bale. It started in a friendly consideration of both being nominated for Best Actor (I maintain that Bale, while being the best part of American Hustle, unfortunately didn’t have enough of a film with which to really break out when compared to others in that category; I felt he performed better in last year’s Out of the Furnace, another film that didn’t earn his wonderful performance). And, as these kinds of conversations often tend to, it rapidly devolved into a reaffirming that we’d bang our respective stars if given the chance.
My friend was very selective (in front of his wife, at any rate), saying he wouldn’t have sex with several Bale variants—The Machinist, Rescue Dawn, The Fighter, and American Hustle, among others. My line is drawn at Empire in the Sun, for obvious, teenaged reasons. That said, if limited, it’d be hard to narrow it to one role, but I think American Psycho is the winner and this gif set should be explanation enough. Although, I’d be very self-conscious of my own body when compared to that Olympian physique. I’ve only ever had sex with women but have similarly felt a pang of shame when undressing with someone slimmer/more toned than myself. Such is my current predicament, but it’s not too big of a deal.
Bale was the same age as me (I feel he looks ten years older than me in the above gifs, but whatever) when he filmed AP. There’s little excuse for not having a killer bod like that.
(Source: bbrando, via njstarkiller)
Another day proving I’m as useful as the spent wax at the bottom of a wickless candle.
Mark Corrigan is the embodiment of the human experience.
a history of the adriatic
A couple—both with one foot in their late teens, the young man still wearing his unbuttoned Partisan liberation jacket and trench socks—make frantic love on a dock near the outskirts of Budva, and in so doing knock a still-corked bottle of Croatian wine into the waves. The bottle wends a path north, caught in the currents, occasionally slipping into the shipping lanes occupied by Italian heavy cruisers keeping their guns trained along the Dalmatian coast. The light of tracer bullets arc and glint along the bottle’s glass, orange and green, the colors of sepsis. Halfway around the world two Japanese cities disappear in a blink and wrinkle of archangelic heat, and the guns on the coast begin to go quiet.
You pick your way among the rocks of Triggiano, taking advantage of the low tide. Only you misjudge a step and you ankle slips on a mat of dried algae, torquing left as your body falls right. You stumble across the stone scree and land facing into a crack between boulders. Wedged between sedimentary tusks and suspended above the wet sand, a green artillery shell of a bottle, dirt-pocked and without label, glass stained inside from a lost and soured vintner. It lies just outside your reach, only it’s just as well. Your ankle throbs and you’re certain your phone’s screen has shattered inside your pocket. You taste gunpowder behind your teeth.
Half-Assed Oscar Thoughts - Best Picture
Despite the annual promise I won’t watch them and have long stopped caring about them, I still have opinions about the Academy Awards. Here are some now:
American Hustle: David O. Russell’s character-driven approach to the ABSCAM operations forgets to have real characters, Christian Bale’s wasted fatness notwithstanding
Captain Philips: Tom Hanks breaks your heart in the final five minutes, has his dialogue yelled over during the preceding two hours
Dallas Buyers Club: So you saw the trailer and thought you knew exactly how the story was going to go? Well, director Jean-Marc Vallée has a trick or two up his…oh, no, wait, it’s precisely the story you think it is. Solid performances, at least, even if LGBT (particularly transgendered) representation is a little suspect
Gravity: Whoa! Whoooa! Hold on! Whooooooaaaa, aaaaaaaaah! Don’t let go! This is a lot of anxiety for what is essentially 4/5ths of an animated feature
Her: If you think this film is indicative of our society’s trend towards self-involvement in our digital doodads and iWhatevers, sincerely go fuck yourself
Nebraska:I’ve personally never been there but I imagine it’s lovely this time of year
Philomena: Probably a decent film. Did it even play anywhere? This movie exists, right?
12 Years a Slave: The best film of 2013. No, really, this was a great and important movie without being an Important Movie, if you catch the distinction. Not enough Mississippi maids or the driving of Miss Daisy to sway the voters, though. It (rightfully) lacks a reassuring ‘White people are actually okay! We beat racism, guys!’ message at the end, so don’t expect the crotchety Academy to do much with this
The Wolf of Wall Street: Martin Scorcese is making better, more energetic films than his ’70s peers and filmmakers half his age. It’s no The Departed, but a great film all the same and please, I’d take this over American Hustle or Gravity as the Academy’s likely choice
(Although I cannot stress enough how far and away 12 Years a Slave compares to its competition. I will be shocked and impressed if its seals the deal come Sunday.)