and more turkey….

Another thanksgiving come and gone, another cold winter night in Long Island. Thanksgiving is a time where all our family friends who we grew up with get together… the ritual is very simple. The parents occupy the main room, the men get together and talk about politics, the women get together and talk about the men… and the kids (anywhere from age 10 to 30) get isolated in one of many quarantined zones to talk about more important matters… like pop-culture, anecdotes (exaggerated of course), and when the next course is gonna arrive.

It’s just so wild to see how much we’ve all grown … yet it’s the same ritual, and it’s great, cuz it’s familiar, it’s fun, and it’s…. i dunno, i need another f word…. f***in awesome. The food was OFF the hook as usual. Since it’s Egyptian style thanksgiving, that usually includes a turkey, and a bunch of egyptian dishes… corn bread? never. But this year we had some mashed potatoes, although Pete claims that they had it last year… I have no recollection of such things.

Here are some photos below, of the evening:

The crew

George: Formerly known as Bart Simpson

The ladies – tryin to be sexy.

So some memorable events of the night include:

  • Luke is dared to eat 2 plates of dessert for $5.00 which he hustles his way out of
  • Luke’s fascination with post-nasal drip
  • Watching ‘Arrested Development’, in particular, one scene where a blue-man is camouflaged at a bar and spies on his wife… making sure everyone in the room noticed the man in blue.
  • So everyone’s talking and suddenly Louis starts speakin in ebonics and it was loud enough for everyone to hear him… what followed was a deafining silence and the tail end of “Yo son, what’s good!”... the children laughed.
  • Pete’s dad appears suddenly and unnoticed with a camcorder
  • And much, much, more!

  • The dudes

    Pete: hand model

    Luke tryin to win a bet.

    Happy Thanksgiving, to all… and to all a good night.

    Wait wait.. while I’m at it… lemme make a shout out

    So this goof-ball with the funky hair is my buddy Craig… he wanted a shout out so he’s gonna get it! So Craig and I were friends back at NYU, and were reconnected on 9/11/01… it was a tragic day but got me reconnected w/ an old buddy. We realized we share an obsession w/ Star Wars… well, with some movies in general…. you never know where you’re gonna run into this guy – hahah sound familiar? ;) Craig’s a great guy and a great friend. So big ups to the man, C. Lenti…

    there, you happy? hahaha


    Cold november twilight…

    if i was a young man
    i could make it snow today
    and plant a garden on the shore
    like it never snowed before

    if i was a young man
    i could win a summer marathon
    you’d ask me for a bed of roses
    and have your pick of three

    when i was a young man
    i erased your flow of tears
    i am your daydream superhero
    dismantle all your fears

    if i was still a young man
    i’d fight the guy who stole your lunch
    and drive my fist right thru his gut
    and while the masses worshipped me
    your kiss was all that mattered

    don’t wake me up till i’m done dreaming


    Homecoming, A Cartoon, and a Dance with Rosario…

    I know, I know! It’s been like 12 days… I apologize, I dunno what’s with me, guys… things have been so busy here. All I can ask for is your forgiveness.

    I’m pretty excited… Nadia is coming back from Kenya in just a few weeks! You don’t understand how excited I am… I haven’t had a good fight with her in a long time ;) Seriously, Nadia, we’ve all been missing you, especially your brother. I know I’m gonna be bawlin my eyes out at the airport, so that should be a sight to see. If anyone wants to see the waterworks, I’ll post her flight information so maybe we can get some group hugs happening.

    Ok, what the heck is this??? I checked out Nadia’s blog yesterday and LOOK! She’s petting a cheetah! If my parents saw this photo, they’d make sure she never went back to Kenya. But I know what Nadia’s response would be “Mom, Dad, you said to be safe, and not go out at night in the streets… you said nothing about being in the same HABITAT with FLESH EATING ANIMALS. NADIA, are you nuts?! hahaha they do look peaceful. If I could, I’d have a cheetah of my own. How hot would that be? It’s not so much for the cool factor to say I got a pet cheetah, because that’s just a given…. wait, you know what, I think it’s all about the cool factor. Cheetahs are cool, and therefore owning one would make me cool. I never liked the cheetah in Harold and Kumar’s Trip to White Castle…. that was just dumb. Nothing that exciting ever happens in Jersey ;)

    So, just an update on the music situation, I have been given this great opportunity to work with some talented actors on an animiated short directed by my home girl Kara Lee Burk. Kara Lee’s from Michigan, and she’s a talented actor and comedian, and after working with her on this project, I can also say she’s a very talented writer and director. I’m basically doing the sound engineering, and editing… so last Saturday I had all these actors in my place, as we recorded take after take of each line… about 8 hours of work… for a 5 minute film. For some reason actors have been a great mystery to me because it’s a talent I certainly don’t have… so I’m just fascinated when I see people doing it, and doing it well (remember that song?) anyway… There was a good section of the time where I recorded them doing improv, guided by Kara Lee, and all I have to say, I haven’t laughed so hard… the stuff these guys were coming up with on the fly, was just so damn impressive!

    Some of these guys have their own gigs happening in the city. Check out Kara Lee and Brandon Beilis in Gotham City Improv’s “Meet Market” on Friday Nights, and Eliot Kalan in The Midnight Kalan at Juvie Hall on Bond St., every other Friday night. Yea it was definitly an honor for me to be among this kind of talent… not to mention we had a kickass time together.

    Ok… so, last Monday I was in the city and I stopped by Virgin Megastore in Times Square to check out the cast of Rent who was there doing some press stuff, and fan meetings, and what not. I got the chance to meet Anthony Rapp, Adam Pascal…. hhahaha and check this, he remembered me from the Duane Reade… I warned him… I was like “dude, one day I’m gonna be able to turn drug store receipts into memerobilia… just wait!” hahaha he was mad cool… Got to meet Wilson-Jermaine Heredia as well… But the meeting of the hour was yet to come. Well, basically, I got the chance to meet, and yes, dance with, Rosario Dawson…. she’s hot… end of story. How’d I dance with her? Long story, but basically I asked her to dance, and she just jumped out of her seat… wow…. i couldn’t believe it. At the end I bowed, and she curtsied, and let it be known that I no longer need to dance, for the rest of my life… that was… the last… dance. I’m hanging up my new balance dance sneaks forever…. and ever… amen.

    Wilson-Jermaine Heredia

    My future wife: Rosario Dawson

    Adam Pascal

    And how bout a song?

    Signing off…


    One Song, One Last Refrain…

    Well, it’s been a painfully long time since I’ve written last. For my two readers out there, although I cannot promise that I’ll never make you endure the withdrawal pains you may have suffered during the last 10 days, but what I can promise, is my love for you will never dwindle, nor expire.

    Now onto business…. As you guys know, I’m a Rent fan, and as of this writing – we got 18 days till the movie comes out. People ask me why I like this show so much… and the answer is simple… it kicks ass. I’m not really a fan of musical theater, though I can appreciate it artistically, mainly because of the pristine quality of much of the songs out there, its just not palatable for me, but Jonathan Larson, God rest his soul, really took a departure in both music, as well as plot, and created something real. Being a New Yorker, I see the characters in his show every day on the street, in the cafes, in my classes… its the world we live in… and its the reality, minus the fact that people break into song every five minutes, but depending on the crowd you hang with, it may happen.

    Firstly, I ran into Adam Pascal at a Duane Reade… Very random. He was very cool, and he even signed my receipt. I hope one day I’ll be able to transform a drug store receipt into memerobilia.

    Well, in an attempt to find some midi files on the net of some of the songs from the show, I found a lot of crap out there. When it comes to music, I’m a perfectionist, and I figure, if you’re gonna make an arrangement of a song, let it be accurate, or at least GOOD

    When I was younger, I would do exercizes where I would listen to a piece, and learn each instrument line, then record each line, layer by layer, and see if the end result sounds like the original. This past week, I did the same with ‘Another Day’, Mimi and Roger’s, duet.

    Although it is a pop song, it was difficult to figure out, especially the arpeggios in the piano parts… And there’s no rhyme or reason to many of the patterns in Larson’s score, which is what keeps it alive, and natural. So, at any rate, I have available to download, both the MIDI file that I created, and an mp3 of the midi file, when I play it out of my sound library. The 2 files sound very different, but it’s the same arrangement… timbre makes such a difference, no?

    And finally I want to make a dedication. The work I put into this song this past week, I wanna dedicate to an old and very dear friend of mine, Anna Fassell. Anna, know that I love you and that I’m praying for you. You brought this song to me, and so now I wanna give it back to you, with my time, sweat, and the earache i suffered after hearing it repeatedly. Bats forever…..

    Another Day: By Jonathan Larson, MIDI Transcription by Paul Kist: MIDI | MP3