I carry a log--yes. Is it funny to you? It is not to me. Behind all things are reasons. Reasons can even explain the absurd. Do we have the time to learn the reasons behind the human being's varied behavior? I think not. Some take the time. Are they called detectives?

log lady

i will translate


ours is a short-haired marriage (for demonstrable reasons), exhibit A:

day 084: blitzkrieg bob

anne geddes, watch your ass.

10.28.09: "it is not to me."

1: ...and besides, spending days and days making a really lovely detailed cloth version of a log instead of carrying a real log is kind of lynchian,* wouldn't you say?
2: [silent]
1: what if i told you it was stuffed with severed ears?

in other Lauren's Log Lady Halloween Costume news, i got a note from the ebay seller from whom i purchased a brown wig two weeks ago: alas, the wig is still without a tracking number somewhere in guangzhou province (notes to self: read fine print in item listings. do not buy fake hair from china.). it will, however, be here by 11/14! (do not buy fake hair from china.) happily, my friend sarah has an extra brown wig that she dug out of her closet on my behalf last night; judd (her husband; yep, same judd) brought it to work today and will be messengering it up here. is messengering fake hair lynchian?

*from "david lynch keeps his head," one of my all-time favorite david foster wallace essays:

A Rotary luncheon where everybody's got a comb-over and a polyester sport coat and is eating bland Rotarian chicken and exchanging Republican platitudes with heartfelt sincerity and yet all are either amputees or neurologically damaged or both would be more Lynchian than not. A hideously bloody street fight over an insult would be a Lynchian street fight if and only if the insultee punctuates every kick and blow with an injunction not to say fucking anything if you can't say something fucking nice.

cocktail hour chandelier

we concluded a truly epic wedding season this saturday with the union of our lovely jersey barbecue hosts, megan and patrick, and a wild celebration in west orange. say what you will about the less lovable parts of the garden state, but it was in its glory this weekend: i actually didn't mind our getting a bit turned around on the highway en route to the reception, as it bought me another fifteen minutes of roadside leaf-peeping. joe and i also broke out our "name that (meowed) tune" time-wasting game, so four fifths of the car* spent the last bit of the drive to the manor meowing "we are the world" as soulfully as we could (judd really outdid himself on the cyndi lauper and michael mcdonald parts). a long weddingless winter is on the horizon, but we have my little sister's wedding in the hazy future to sustain us: baby jo and her excellent boyfriend, chris, got engaged this past friday, and they tell us their first dance will be "as the world falls down." if she rocks sarah's ball gown (a distinct possibility, as she's getting her MFA in costume design), i can die happy.

*george was the holdout. in his defense, he was driving.

10.23.09: to say that bilbo's breath was taken away is no description at all

twelve things i brought home from my desk-hoard this week:

01 a pink hammer
02 five hundred pyramid studs*
03 six bricks of sculpey**
04 a broom
05 two yards of brown wool felt***
06 tapestry needles****
07 a glass cloche
08 tovah martin's the new terrarium
09 a momofuku galley
10 a pendleton blanket from procter & gamble kansas city (SEPTEMBER 1968 - WORLD SAFETY RECORD)
11 pictorial webster's
12 a large wooden basket*****

i'm hustling to acquire furniture for the new apartment because we'll only have space for it for another few days, you see. it's a compulsion, the hoarding of craft supplies and blankets and weird office giveaways.

*for making a pair of these. that was a strange order to place; i called joe to let him know the paypal charge to our account from studsandspikes.com was mine.

**to make a brooch for my log lady costume, and for our housewarming party. in related news, a coworker told me the other day that shrinky dinks still exist; this will be the best housewarming party ever.

***also log-related.


*****ditto, in spirit if not in practice.


i've been trying to put my finger on what it is about the last few generations of blog trends that's so very alienating. at some point i started feeling like statler and waldorf in the balcony on the muppet show; like many a blogger before me, i've taken to missing The Old Internet, and get off my lawn. online shopping is now a fabulous thing, of course, and as a researcher i can hardly complain about the databases that have gone virtual, but...the blogosphere is getting a bit desolate. at some point it stopped feeling like a good party and started feeling like a bedroom with a bunch of magazine clippings taped to the wall (by a semiliterate teenager). i love a collage (and magpies), but seriously, why can't original content be the status quo? where'd everyone go, and why are the stragglers all wearing the same shirt?

i don't know that i'd care for a web with universally personal sites. i do care - quite a lot, actually - for taking a collective breather from the echo chamber of #followfriday, tumblr, flickr-as-stock-photos...you get my drift. let's stop dumping on things we're tired of seeing and mimicking things we find; let's put out.

my-damn-self monday? media fast monday? maker's monday, if you're into brown liquor? i'd like to see a day devoted to blog content that's utterly original. start the week with fresh writing and images; hold off on the links and snippets and shout-outs for a bit. tell me what you did over the weekend instead of showing me what you want to buy. if your site is topical, make it a manifesto day rather than a meta day. what if i said all the cool kids are doing it?

10.20.09: milestone postcards

closing night on the LES, cont'd.

we burned two and a half hours of chilly october daylight around a conference table on friday afternoon. i spent most of that time signing my name and/or nodding while making earnest faces at our attorney (part of that was to demonstrate my hard-earned understanding of new york real estate; part of it was our bonding over the improbable revelation that she had a three-legged cat). after the previous owners (finally) pushed a hedgehog-sized pile of keys across the table at us and wished us well, we dashed into a drugstore down the street, grabbed little bags of cheez-its and big cans of heineken, and took a cab to the lower east side.* champagne toasts are nice and all, but we wanted to make it to the new digs before the sun set.

we did, just barely. "i wish we could stay," joe whispered.** "we need the cat," i whispered back.

rick and judd

so we took the subway back up to hell's kitchen, where our broker and dear friend judd sang us some bowie. good people, our people.

*joe told his mother about that when he called her a few hours later; she said that when she and his dad bought their first place in arizona thirty years ago, they spent their first night sitting on the floor with coors and beer nuts. heritage!

**though we closed on friday, we couldn't move until monday morning.


101 in 1001 {II}: 010 buy an apartment [completed 10.16.09]

day 071: our keys

10.12.09: a dreaded sunny day

101 in 1001 {II}: 052 visit at least 3 cemeteries in the new york area [01/03 as of 10.10.09]
amanda and i coincided at columbus circle and took the train out to green-wood for angels and accordions, a concert / dance performance / semi-goth hoedown. i had my very first whoopie pie (an early birthday treat) among the headstones; it was excellent.

day 066: tree-angel (3 of 3)

van ness-parsons

silhouettes, graves

accordion, repose

(full set here)

10.08.09: recycled magazine bows

day 063: recycled magazine bows

i like to think of myself as a budding assembler of things, but the truth is that i'm happiest when i'm hacking them up (which is convenient, what with my being a magazine editor). i'm especially fond of hacking them up for gift wrapping, so this clever how-to (from jessica jones, a graphic designer in chicago) made my morning. if you've got five minutes, a magazine, a pair of scissors, and some combination of a stapler, tape, and glue, you've got these boys. jessica also worked her magic with a map of chicago that turned out beautifully. i tried to follow suit with a map of the adirondacks that had been living under my desk, but the thicker paper is trickier to arrange properly; i prefer to work with food photos (that little guy at top left is crudités and ellie krieger's green goddess dip; the center strip is broccoli). chop chop, internets.


slight modification to my imaginary career plans: i'd like to be an Wedding Afterparty and Wrap Party Photographer.

vince giordano and the nighthawks

joe, dave, beverages

unmaking the band

mystery model (2 of 2)

10.02.09: jean pelle bubble chandelier

i've messed around with wiring a grand total of once in my life: in seventh grade, my invention fair group tried to build circular track lighting (shut up, we were twelve) and managed to knock out half of the outlets at one poor kid's house. we might also have thrown said track lighting in his pool when it threatened to catch on fire, but my memory could be embroidering a bit. let's say that it is.

on the other hand, i've been electrocuted many times - most recently when my curling iron crapped out in college and i decided to bite the cord while the darn thing was still plugged into the wall (shut up, i was, er, eighteen). that was certainly my fault, but i also seem to have spectacularly bad luck where outlets and wires and things that go zzzt are concerned. given all that, i'm especially proud of the fact that i totally made a chandelier last night.

jean pelle bubble chandelier

it's a project jean pelle designed for readymade this spring; i missed it at the time, probably because all of our magazines bit the dust in the vast hemorrhaging of stuff that was march's bed bug adventure, but i leapt to attention when it came up in jean's sneak peek at design*sponge this monday. joe and i are fixated on the idea of a chandelier in our bathroom, and this one fits the brief perfectly: it's a bit nautical, a bit industrial, and quite playful. our bathroom-to-be needs to take itself less seriously: there's marble, and then there's marble. i promptly ordered a dozen small bubble balls ($2 each) and three porcelain sockets ($5 each) online, hunted down plastic rods at lee's up the street, and got everything else at the hardware store. i had all of my materials by yesterday morning, ran them home on my lunch break, and settled in to throw it all together yesterday evening.

chandelier bulb

in hindsight, i should've bought a few spare bubble balls. i broke one as i was wiping its label-goo away with a cotton ball and some nail polish remover; i broke two more (they're fragile little guys) when my first attempt at wire-wrapping wasn't emphatic enough and the whole chandelier crashed in my lap. i also could have kept an eye out for white electrical tape (mine was black), as it wouldn't have been as visible beneath the cotton parcel-post string.

chandelier wiring

that said, this is the best kind of project: its materials are common and inexpensive, it doesn't require special skills (if you can make a simple braid, you've got all the background you need) or obscure tools (i bought a $9 wire stripper, but i probably could have made do with a utility knife in a pinch), and it's a great introduction to a traditionally intimidating branch of DIY. i can't tell you how proud i was when i put on my rubber wellies, plugged in the extension cord, and saw the whole thing light up. i made a motherfucking chandelier last night!