We had friends in town this weekend, which meant that we spent a lot of time walking around Manhattan. Like, nine hours on Saturday, and a few more on Sunday. We did things like take them to Barcade, with its wall-to-wall old school arcade games, and then walked home to find a man being forcibly ejected from the pizza place across the street from our apartment, all while being punched in the back of the head. You know, New York stuff.
Kumail and I also got to see Of Montreal on Friday, and let me say this about Of Montreal: I am now totally fine with them selling out their song to Outback, because the show I saw was extremely prop-heavy and crazy and outlandish and paid for with Outback money. Golden idols that reveal themselves to be dancing ninjas? Check. A spinning piece of the stage that reveals scenes of barfights that are frozen in time? Check. The lead singer in a priest’s outfit split in the back to reveal leopard print underwear? Check. A live horse onstage that the lead singer sat on wearing the aforementioned underwear? Check. And don’t get me wrong, I love this band, but I realize now that they’re like GWAR. Musically, they’re not that great. They’re all out of synch with each other, the lead singer can barely sing live, and his voice is slathered in effects, so really, they need to put on a good show. And they do. So I was beyond pleased. But if they ever record an MTV Unplugged, I would maybe skip it.
Saturday we decided to full-on attack the city and started at Central Park. We worked our way down from there, stopping at Dylan’s Candy Bar, which is completely overwhelming, and made Kumail look like this:
We then wandered into a Barney’s on the Upper East Side, where Jennifer Hudson was apparently shopping. I wanted to ask her how the fuck she managed to land a mantreat like Punk, the runner up in I Love New York 2, but I thought that might be rude, so instead we just left.
We continued our walk down the island, and happened upon a Kabbalah Center that was circled with photogs and random people. We were like “it must be Madonna”, and decided to wait around for a few minutes. We started slowly seeing the place come to life, with large men in suits running around, SUVs being backed up into driveways, etc. Sure enough, after about 10 minutes, the door opened and motherfucking Madonna herself came out the door and was hustled into her SUV. I actually teared up. She is tiny in person, and although I’ve referenced how pictures of her make her look old and drawn, her face is actually quite gorgeous still. It was like seeing a smurf, or a unicorn. She’s not supposed to exist on the same plane as everyone else. But she did, and I saw her. BOOOOO YA.
We followed that up with seeing Abigail Breslin
in Union Square, looking cute and young and hip, and then going to see Banksy’s first commissioned NYC piece. If you’re not familiar with Banksy, go to Web Urbanist and study up, they have an 8-part series reviewing his art. Anyway, he’s opened a pet store in Greenwich Village called The Village Pet Store and Charcoal Grill that treats items made from animals as if they were pets, like a fur coat crumpled to look like a cheetah, or chicken nuggets eating bird seed.
This blog has a nice little write up about it, (and this picture), and while we were at the pet store we learned that Banksy had put up four more pieces throughout the city, so we decided to go find them!
We only found one.
How fucking cool is this? You see how huge it is? That’s Kumail and Vivek down underneath it. The thing was massive. Hopefully we’ll get to go on a scavenger hunt for the rest of them soon.
So if you’re wondering where Gynomite has been, she’s been recovering. From a whole lot of awesome.