kjpepper: (abi station coffee)
Mostly for [livejournal.com profile] bellarisa - more evidence that most of your childhood can be found on youtube if you look hard enough.

Cast of the Cosby Show performing "night time is the right time"

I'd embed it, but this one's disabled. Still, seeing this always makes me smile.

I am sitting in the Haymarket waiting to meet grinninfoole for lunchies. Have laptop, will travel.

And more words, this time from [livejournal.com profile] nounsandverbs:

Brooklyn, YouTube, driving, family, poly )
kjpepper: (shame shit different day)
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New York: the subway, any part of it really but if we are anywhere near Herald Square you will be dragged onto the 34th street N R Q platform to play with Reach! NY. Also the museum of natural history, rockafeller center, and maybe the cloisters. These days I've been sticking closer to home so a tour round prospect park, Flatbush and park slope will likely happen too.

The Valley: a few more options are available since I can drive now... There's always downtown noho and Amherst (everyone gets dragged to a2z with me at least once), but now there's the book mill in montague, the peace pagoda in leverett, the potholes at shelburne falls, bash bish falls, Magic Wings and (not for the faint of nose) Yankee candle.

I'm currently having some lunch in the sunshine at BPL waiting for a requested book to be brought up. Gods... Parade of cute children out here...
kjpepper: (click)
I did indeed manage to drag myself out into the pretty weather armed with camera. Took a bunch of pictures around the park and in one of the nearby subway stations. Front page picture on LJ finally updated for summer, whew!

I like that picture the best out of the lot.

You can see the rest on Facebook (no login required)

Also damn. Note to self, if ego boost is needed concerning personal attractiveness, go for a walk in flatbush in a tight shirt. I got hit on today to the point of annoyance.


Jun. 6th, 2009 02:56 pm
kjpepper: (greek temple)
It's sunny and warm out there. George* has been showing up at my house the past three days, ringing the bell and running away; today he gave up and came in, and from the feel of things, is playing Wii Sports. Eeegh. Guess he's sticking around this time.

Puts my general mood wonkiness of the past few days into perspective. I'm annoyed by this, to be honest - I hate how hormones + weather = basically end up with me turning into Despair from Sandman. Except less pale. *sigh* ugh. I think once move is achieved I'm definitely going to head back to Chiquitita and try to stick to seeing her regularly. I really can't manage my brain very well on my own, I'm coming to realize. I hate that, but I can't do much about it other than accept it and try to work with it, and for that I need help. Bah.

Next trip back to the valley is pencilled in a week later than originally planned (June 22-28). Planning on using a good chunk of that week to apartment hunt. Hoping to find something for Aug 1st, but am not going to say no if we find someplace that wants July 1st - just means I'll have to borrow a bit from my sister and dad to get things settled. Still... I was commenting to [livejournal.com profile] labmouse over skype that I'm probably not done with New York. Despite the setbacks, it's been, a good thing overall coming back and plugging back in with my family, and I don't plan on letting the renewed connections lapse again. Which means most likely coming back more often, probably for a week or so at a time. The whole telecommuting to work deal will make that pretty easy. Besides, a big part of me is going to miss hanging with Dad, now that I've gotten a chance to, and like he's said repeatedly for the last 20 years or so, he's not going to be around forever.

Decided to skip MoCCA today... not all that much there I want to see, plus I've got things that need doing tonight and tomorrow. Am heading out after this post to meet [livejournal.com profile] ggirl for craft fair in a little bit (and break in the new sneakers). There's another fair type deal happening in the Slope tomorrow too, vaguely thinking of walking over and checking it out. All depends on what I get done and what I feel like doing.

* [livejournal.com profile] athene's pet name for the monthly visitor
kjpepper: (new york)

I have a strong urge to oink now.


Apr. 24th, 2009 01:44 pm
kjpepper: (shame shit different day)
So Dad's now in the ER for tests. I remember all too well what THAT's like. :P

So since, understandably, I've been shot for working, my plans for the rest of the day are pretty much, finish my laundry, walk to BPL to pick up my book pull (I'm still kind of agog by the whole put-in-a-request-for-a-book-online-and-we'll-pull-it-from-a-library-across-the-borough-for-you thing) and from there depending on what news I've heard, jump on the IRT to Manhattan to see what's going on with Dad.

Whoa, I just said IRT. *snicker* yes ma'am, I think I've officially reclaimed my New Yorkerness.*

* It's a subway thing.
kjpepper: (new york)

This damn song's been stuck in my head all night.
kjpepper: (new york)
msg-14211-13589.jpgI'm pretty sure Google weather lies. It's telling me it's 77 degrees F in NYC right now. Now granted it is warm and beautiful out, but I'd give it maybe 69, 70.

Anyway. I went for a walk today. A rather long walk. I actually walked almost all the way across Brooklyn. I ran a couple of errands in the neighborhood, got breakfast at Sybil's (a tennis roll with cheese and a slice of the most excellent lemon pound cake evar), walked through the park to the library, where I returned Shinju and checked out the next one in the Sano Ichiro series (Bundori). From there I farted around the Brooklyn Farmer's Market for a while, then walked down Flatbush Ave to Atlantic Ave, and then down Atlantic to Court Street and the Transit Museum.

Dear gods, I love this place. The entire museum is underground in a disused subway mezzanine and station at Court and Schermerhorn Streets. It's pretty small - you can see the whole thing in about half an hour - and cheap to get in ($5.00). The real prize of it is down on the station level where both tracks house old subway cars. The tracks are live, as these trains are occasionally let out for walkies fan trips, though I didn't see any scheduled yet for this year. Still... even just sitting still, the old cars are fascinating.

msg-14211-13585.jpg msg-14211-13607.jpg

Next time totally bringing the Hatemonger. I don't think my phone camera really did the spooky lighting of the cars any justice.

It's also apparently the 175th anniversary of the Long Island Railroad:


I also now have a Q train mousepad. My utter nerditude, let me show you it.

msg-14211-13628.jpgAfter coming back upstairs to Court street, I chilled out for a bit in the cafe section of Barnes and Noble, sucking down a gigantic coffee and working a bit on both Nevershire and the Four Brothers story. I really need to tuck my ass away and write more. I also apparently need to learn how to play poker. (oh... [livejournal.com profile] htl_1126, the word I was looking for earlier was either jaźwiec or borsuk.) I also went to Trader Joe's, which is in the old South Brooklyn Savings Bank Building... makes for an interesting juxtaposition of form vs. function, especially when you add Kool and the Gang singing Jungle Boogie over the PA system. (Course, I was a little startled to hear Ladytron in Barnes and Noble, so what do I know.)

Not sure what I'm going to do with the remainder of my Saturday. Some work, some room cleaning, DDR if I feel up to it later, and definitely some reading. I'm currently plowing through Expendable and have to finish The Long Goodbye and The Scar before next weekend so I can return both of them to their respective owners. We'll see. Off I bounce again...
kjpepper: (winter holiday)

I might have to do this in December. I love this sort of "For no reason other than it's funny" shit.

There are Santacons all over the damn place if you want to do it next winter too. :)


Feb. 19th, 2009 12:32 pm
kjpepper: (new york)
There's a JoCo concert in NY on March 27th.

It's so weird, planning for things in the city, and getting all excited about them... I still haven't quite made the mental shift, so I'll catch myself making plans and being all oh yeah, I'm gonna be THERE. quite with the bizarre.

Anycrap. NY PEEPS. Anyone interested in going?

OMG squee

Feb. 9th, 2009 05:46 pm
kjpepper: (shame shit different day)
so [livejournal.com profile] masteradept, in his endless quest to keep my StumbledUpon inbox full, sent me this painting:

Completely ignoring the fact that this picture made my ovaries want to claw their way out of my abdomen and into my monitor in an attempt to NOM this kid's cheeks, I'd just like to point out that HOLY CRAPZORZ, I am teh subway nerd. There are 26 lines in the NYC subway system and just from glancing at this I could narrow it down to five possible lines this kid's riding. (F, A, R, E or G.... and come to think of it I think the L.)

I'd put money on the F though.

This is the artist, btw if anyone's intereste. Really nice work overall.
kjpepper: (shame shit different day)
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Not so much on the bus, but you grow up in New York and you end up seeing a lot of crazy stuff on the subway. Plenty of your standard issue crazies, flashers and pan flute ensembles (anyone who has seen any recent South Park should be giggling about that one), but every so often you see really spectacular things, like the six and a half foot tall skinny black man dressed in a rainbow tie-dyed bodysuit that covered him from head to ankles, antennae and huge diaphanous butterfly wings that was running up and down the platform at W 34th street singing the theme from the 1960s Batman.

Speaking of which, the annual pantsless ride should be soon, if not already past, I'll have to check. Every January, an improv group (forget which one) invites any and all who want to join them for a day-long ride around New York on the subway. Without pants. I have not yet seen/participated in this and I'm pretty sure I missed it this year, but one day I mean to.
kjpepper: (masstransiscope)
So Andee, you may ask, what the hell is that icon?

The icon is the first half of an art piece called Masstransiscope. The animation is painted on big panels behind a wall with slits cut in it, and the piece animates to the viewers inside passing subway trains. It was installed on the remaining platform of the Myrtle Avenue station just past DeKalb Avenue on the Manhattan side, between the station and the bridge. It was a startling, colorful surprise in a long dark boring tunnel for commuters in the morning, including myself shuttling back and forth to UNIS every day for 11 years.

Unfortunately, it being in an abandoned station and relatively accessible, it's been graffiti-bombed several times since its installation in 1980, so I remember long periods of my life where the piece was so damaged that the MTA said fuck it and turned the lights off, and then people would forget about it for years. And then lo and behold someone would make a donation, the piece would be hosed down, and the lights restored and there it was, surprising train riders again. (Luckily for all involved, some smart person thought to get the piece coated with a graffiti resistant layer of something.)

So yeah, it's back. They actually took the entire piece apart, cleaned it up, had the original artist retouch or redo some of the panels (Hampshire student, btw) replaced all the lights, and put it back together, and apparently yesterday morning they turned it back on in time for the morning rush hour. Good to see that it'll surprise and delight another round of kids and suits, hopefully for another 28 years.


Jul. 28th, 2008 11:35 am
kjpepper: (Take the A train)
Vacation vacation vacation is free! Well not free. But at least scheduled. I've taken the week of the 17th off, and I will be going home sweet New York for it. ("Her Daddy'll love that.")

Looking rather rabidly forward to the time off, and knowing that it's coming puts a little more drive and focus into my days. Hey, every little bit helps.

The rest of this entry is devoted to time whoring - if people want to get together/see me while I'm downside, let me know. :D
kjpepper: (shame shit different day)
I'm sorta dedicating this weekend to working on my personal web sites. This includes my LJ layouts, as I've had basically the same ones for the past few years and I'm tired of looking at them. Working on a new design, but in the meantime, as a spur, I've switched to one of the out of the box layouts LJ seems to keep having people develop instead of working on that damn journal search feature I've wanted them to put in for years. So, being me, I put it in the Cityscape NYC layout.

I hate it. The art is fine, and all but I want to jump onto the designers blog and flood her mailbox with ZOMG THE BROOKLYN BRIDGE IS SOUTH OF THE EMPIRE STATE BUILDING! FIX IT! FIX IT NAU!

This shouldn't be surprising seeing as I'm the same person who bitches about the fact that the Empire State Building is on a corner, not at the end of a street every time the shot of it blowing up happens in Independance Day. Research, people! Tony Starks built this in a cave! WITH A BOX OF SCRAPS.

I mean seriously. They got it right for GTA4, the least you could have done was put the damn bridge on the left instead of the right. Grumble.

I think I'm going to take a walk in a bit. I feel a craving for Pepsi and little snacky cakes, and it seems as good of a reason as any to slip out of the house and enjoy the night for a while.
kjpepper: (lol internet)
...and now I have various snippets of REO Speedwagon songs wedged into my head. Thank you SO much [livejournal.com profile] nounsandverbs and [livejournal.com profile] purpura. It's especially bad because my very first experience with REO Speedwagon was "in your letter" by way of the Jane Fonda Workout album my sister used to worship as her personal fitness god when I was a kid, so I can't ever hear it without hearing "AND CIRCLE 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 and BACK 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 PALMS UP 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 AND SCISSOR! SCISSOR SCISSOR SCISSOR now STREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEETCH FEEL THE BURN." Seriously, double your trauma double your fun.

Tonight's other internet cooties:

from [livejournal.com profile] stormcloud:

from [livejournal.com profile] athene:
Jorge Garcia's blog (LJ Feed: an LJ feed). AKA Hurley from LOST. Funny stuff.

What in Satan's red and spicy Hades is up with the cranes falling off high rises in NYC? CUT THAT OUT THIS INSTANT.

I leave you with the fact that Prince finds you funny looking and squicky.

kjpepper: (mudflap girl)
  • I know I've mentioned this before, but I an continually amused and a little freaked out by how excited I get when people post my stuff on [livejournal.com profile] metaquotes. I'm especially pleased by my last post - it made it up within five minute of posting, and within another ten I was awarded the internets. Yeah yeah. Self esteem. I apparently needs it. :)

    Though, this is definitely my best one - already up to like 120 comments. Who knew irritating commercials would strike such a nerve? Though, one drawback - someone reminded me of those awful HEAD ON commercials, and now, broken record style, all i'm hearing in my head this morning is "HEAD ON APPLY DIRECTLY TO THE FOREHEAD." Ow.)

  • One consequence of [livejournal.com profile] morlock needing to be at work by 7 is that I'm getting up hella early these days. Case in point (looks at post time) though I've been up for like an hour already and have already had my coffee and stuff. The weird part is that I don't really mind - part of the reason why I generally stay up late is to be awake in the house when no one else is, and the same effect is generally acheived when one rolls out of bed at 5:30.

  • Another consequence of [livejournal.com profile] morlock getting up early - morning cartoons. I'm seriously caught between hating the new Transformers (I know, I'm a little late coming into the game) and wanting to pick up Bumblebee and give him a big squeeze because TEH KYOOT IT BURNS.


  • One thing I've never quite gotten used to since moving to New England is how much closer the sky seems. I'm currently looking out the window at densely packed layers of cumulous clouds drifting lazily by like some freakishly animated bag of dusty cotton balls. They look low enough to reach out and touch, which is definitely a weird illusion for me to have, having grown up with the generally comforting idea that the sky was at least far enough away to be pretty much held up by the spires atop the Empire State, the Chrysler and at the time the WTC. Pillars of the world they were. I don't know, out here there's this constant subconsious sense of O KRAP WHAT'S HOLDING UP THE SKY.

    ....remind me never to go to a plains state or anywhere with pretty much 360° horizon. I'm pretty sure the above feeling would blossom into full tilt agoraphobia if I did.

  • People who have Twitter should follow StephenTColbert. A tweet from last night: "Nation, I don’t know if you've heard this, but gas is getting kind of pricey. It's getting to the point where I can't burn anyone in effigy."

    Jhonen Vasquez (JhnenVEE) and Jeph Jacques (jephjacques) are also full of the periodic hilarity.

  • Something that made me chuckle when I read it this morning:

    A man said to the universe:
    "Sir, I exist!"
    "However," replied the universe,
    "The fact has not created in me
    A sense of obligation."

    ---Stephen Crane


s'all I got for now. Too damn early in the morning wth.
kjpepper: (new york)
Happy birthday, W.


Sep. 11th, 2006 11:32 am
kjpepper: (Take the A train)
Just for poops and ha has, I pulled out my old green journal to see what I had written if anything about September 11th. I was amused to find a couple of long rambly entries dated that day written in the wee hours of the night beforehand ranting about other stuff, meaning that I had gotten to bed around 3am the night previous. Very ironically, the first one dated 9/11 starts with "Well, this day was nothing if not the epitome of evil." The funny part is that it was dated 9/11, 1 am, so clearly I was talking about the day before, and the evil quite personal one. (apparently I was also sick then too, plus Carole had gotten hit by a car while on her bike - not seriously hurt, but bruised up quite a bit.) Even funnier was that the date was wrong, further reading reveals that this is actually September 10th's entry, and as I was wont to do when I was still keeping paper journals, I had bolloxed up the date.

There is a short bit written that evening, then another 3am ramble about personal hellaciousness, and then one dated 12:32 pm that has a few terse sentences describing what happened, and then something along the lines of "WTF is wrong with people???" and a grumble about how they'd chosen their targets poorly. (not reprinting it, since the FBI's probably reading.)

There isn't anything until September 20th because apparently I hadn't had a chance to write. But that entry is interesting... I wrote about the sudden rash of American flags everywhere in the days past, and how all the flags on actual poles were probably never going to be raised from half staff again, and how the country's shock had thawed to war-hungry rage and how much that scared fuck all out of me. I knew more people in the military back then than I do now, and that was BEFORE [livejournal.com profile] timarok enlisted. I'd forgotten that Jim Blau had volunteered to dig survivors out of the rubble. And though it's had occasion to reiterate itself since then, I am rather amused at how vehemently annoyed I was by my fellow humans, including a few that were close to me, for their attitudes post attack. I'd forgotten how scary it was. All that rage... coming from everywhere. And me thinking, shit, haven't enough fucking people died? This was still when the projected death tolls were still above 8,000... I suppose revenge is part of human nature, but DAMN.

It's always interesting, that 20/20 hindsight thing. That and the realization that I was a lot angrier in my paper journals, or maybe just expressing it more cause no one was reading.

K, shutting up now.
kjpepper: (new york)
Five years ago around 10:15, I was strolling to the post office to pick up stamps for a work mailing. The weather, incidentally, was gorgeous, I remember that.

picking up stamps was my errand back then - it got me out of the office for about ten minutes once a week, which was a much looked forward to break. At that point I was on pretty much first name basis with all the clerks at the Northampton PO, so I was looking forward to seeing them as well.

When I got there, the first thing I noticed was that a TV on an AV cart had been dragged to the spot behind the counters. All the clerks were pretty much huddled to both sides of it, and everyone who had stopped in to do various mail related things were all draped over the counters, rivited by the fuzzy static ridden image coming through on the screen, picked up as best they could by rabbit ear antennas. I remember thinking "huh, that looks like the twin towers." But I couldn't tell that the tops of both of them were on fire until I got closer and could make out the billows of smoke amidst the static. Oh shit, I thought. "What the hell happened?" I asked.

They told me. A plane had flown into each tower.

I picked up my stamps and wandered out of the post office in a state of shocked calm. Once I got back I told everyone to turn on the radio, cause "Some major shit was going down in New York." Work, obviously, came to a grinding halt as we each flipped on NPR.

I put down my stamps and called [livejournal.com profile] sundart, instructing her in a shaky voice to call my parents and not stop until she got an answer. She wouldn't get one, as the phone lines into New York were swamped long beforehand.

Bosslady returned from a talk she was giving at STCC that morning, still in her blue suit. There was a quiet exchange of "have you heards?" At this point, we'd heard that both the towers had collapsed and I was in a quiet state of near panic - a good chunk of my family was in the city at that time - two of my sisters (one living, one working), and my parents. My dad, retired by then, had a penchant for going downtown every day to check up on his investments. Hell, on Fridays I would go with him, and we always stopped at the WTC concourse for a book at Borders, or a slice of pizza at the Sbarro, or dad would pick up or drop off one of this multitudinous rolls of film at the camera store. Not to mention there was a Warner Brothers store down there as well - one bordering the entrance to the N/R Cortlandt Street Station had a mural/sculpture of all the Warner Cartoon characters riding the train. So I was mostly worried about him. If I'd been thinking rationally I would have known he was all right - he was never out of bed at 10 am, let alone running around. He usually didn't make it to the city until past noon. But no one was thinking rationally that morning.

Bosslady decided to dig out the small TV in the back of her office closet, so, after some rooting, we got it out and set it up in what was then our classroom. After about 20 minutes of fighting with it for a picture, one finally leapt out of the screen - not crystal clear, but clear enough - first tower 2 tumbling downwards in a poof of smoke, then tower 1. Somehow hearing about it on the radio hadn't made it real, but seeing it was another thing entirely.

"That's it," I said. "I'm going home."

No one objected.

The next few hours were anxious, as I still couldn't get through to anyone in the family. It's funny now - I really should have just checked my hotmail while I was at work, because I would have known everyone was fine right away (Mom sent a mass "we're fine" email), but I didn't think of it while I was at work, and when I went home, I was trying to leave the phone line open in case there was news, so I didn't want to sign on and tie up the line (we didn't have broadband then.) Maybe six hours later the one sister that wasn't in the city called me to tell me that mom and dad were home and ok, Ruthy was home and ok, and Anucha was stranded at the office in Midtown with no way to get home to NJ because they had sealed off all entries and exits to NY, not to mention there really wasn't any transportation running at all by then. I listened as various reports came in from around the world - some expressing horror at what had happened, some just saying - dude, we didn't do it. (interestingly enough, two "dude, we didn't do it's" originally came from the Taliban and Iraq.)

Later that day [livejournal.com profile] beatgoddess, Monica and I went to Stop and Shop to pick up some stuff, and in the parking lot I walked into the rusty tailpipe of a truck, which took a deep gouge out of my left shin. It was so deep that it never filled back in right - there's still a depression in the skin there. It was also so deep that the flesh there (when the cut wasn't filled with blood) was paper white - I remember horrifying beatgoddess by holding it up and saying "see, you really can get the black off is you scrape hard enough." Heh. I still call it my September 11th scar.

For a little while after that I became a news junkie, watching the footage of that second plane barrelling into 2 WTC and then both of them falling over and over, not quite believing that a major part of my childhood was suddenly gone. I have so many memories of being a kid with my parents shopping at the concourse, the couple of years where my sister worked in the Governor's office in one of the towers, and the couple of times when the entire family had gone to Windows on the World to celebrate one thing or another - I remember being very little and having Dad walk me around all the windows in the restaurant to look at the view of New York. Cars look like ants from that high, and you can't see people at all.

New York has changed so much in the decade or so since I left it, this being the most jarring change of all. I'm thankful me and mine were unharmed that day. I still lost something. I went back a couple of months later and it was so strange, not seeing them there, even when you know you're looking in the right direction. The scary part was that in that moment you realize it's hard to remember what they looked like when they were there. People don't look directly at buildings - they're just part of the scenery, taken for granted, until one terrible day they go poof.

I am home sick today, and listening to traffic moving outside. [livejournal.com profile] sundart is telling me about the latest antics of the cats. Pretty much, other than the headlines and the fact that I can see the top of the Amherst Common flagpole but not the flag itself (must be at half staff) life has moved on from September 11th. No one's forgotten, of course. But like all things, time lessons the pain and shock the more it passes, and we are all different people than we were five years ago. It is almost hard to believe that at this exact time, on an equally beautiful Tuesday morning, the world came to a screeching halt, and as Rotten.com so tastefully put it "all of creation went completely batshit today." (The headline for that article was "Everything Goes Fucko-Bazoo" and was about a paragraph long. beatgoddess printed it out and laminated it, and it may still be in her bathroom for all I know. "Fucko-bazoo" and "batshit" have since entered my general lexicon.) I'm pretty sure in another ten or fifteen years, they'll make September 11 into another memorial day... the monday before it will be "September 11th - observed" and then there will be the last barbecue of the season, where you get rid of all the leftover hamburger from Labor Day. Or something. *chuckle* But for now... remembrance. and a quiet moment for the 4000ish souls that lost their lives that day in service to the political pursuits of various madmen.

July 2009



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