3 Days Until SFPC Fall 2016 Begins

Anxious to get started. We got the list of our classes on Monday, I believe. Really looking forward to learning from Ramsey, Taeyoon, and Ingrid but I expect to enjoy all of the classes being offered this fall. I was really hoping Allison Parrish would be there because I really dig her work but hopefully I’ll get the chance to learn from her in the future. Heck, I’ve learned so much already from her copious online resources.

Picked up a copy of Kenneth Goldsmith’s Uncreative Writing today, as well as Mary Rueffle’s Madness, Rack, and Honey, which is a series of lectures about poetry. I’ve enjoyed reading actual English sentences and thoughts again - learning code sometimes feels like learning Russian or Mandarin or something. I enjoy the critical theory and humanities-thinking. It makes more sense to me.

That said, I have been pretty bad about training myself up to code in this past week. I wanted to get proficient(as a beginner) in C++, Python, and the Unix command line but I got to NYC on Monday 10/3 and pretty much have been just getting adjusted to life here. 

On Tuesday, 10/4, I hung out with my SFPC classmate Agustin Ramos Anzorena. We got bagels in Park Slope, then walked Prospect Park and down to the Kensington neighborhood where I’m staying and did a laptop hang. He’s been getting a lot of Vimeo hits recently for a really cool project he created called Huichol Pattern Generator.

The first sentence of the description from the video:

The Huichol Pattern Generator is software for the generation of colorfull patterns that animate over a grid. It is based on the kind of structure present in the art of the Huichol, a Mexican MesoAmerican culture.

The Huichol Pattern Generator’s output is supposed to be projected inside a dome, to mimic the effect of being inside a mesoAmerican sweat lodge, says Agustin. Definitely worth watching full-screen.

Also, I am very, very excited to volunteer for Eyebeam’s Tech by Artists workshop from 10am-6pm. That’s perfect because they’re hosting a party that starts at 6pm, and I may or may not even have a date who’s coming to the party(she’s bringing her sister, still counts). Agustin’s volunteering as well. It should be a lot of fun.

I’ve been riding my bike in the city, after boxing it up and checking it when I flew from Dallas. Holy crap New York is a dangerous place to ride a bike. I rode from south of Prospect Park, across the Brooklyn Bridge, and to Greenwich Village without a helmet to hang out with an improv comedy friend. I think it was about 5 miles from Kensington to Greenwich Village.

On the way back to Brooklyn, I popped into an East Village bike shop, Continuum Cyclery, to look at helmets. I wanted a skate helmet because for some reason I’m 30 and still concerned about looking cool. None of them fit. Jeff, the guy at the shop handed me a white, dorky one, and as I was trying on the helmet, at that exact moment, this lyric from Bowie’s “Space Oddity” played from the shop radio: 

“Take your protein pills and put your helmet on”

I basically threw my money at Jeff. 

The price for the helmet was $45, which was a little high, but as soon as I heard that lyric, I was like, 

“I’ll take it - it’s a sign, man. I rode here from Ditmas Park without a helmet and the whole time, I was just thinking ‘I am a complete idiot to be riding my bike in NYC without a helmet’.”

In so many words, he agreed, took my money, and sent me on my way. The helmet was even big enough that I could wear my ratty old Arri Film hat underneath it.

I came back across the Williamsburg bridge, which had a lot less walkers. I’m thinking about riding my bike to school when I relocate to Bed Stuy - I’ll probably take the Williamsburg Bridge. It’s more chill, as a bike rider. 

Across the bridge I stopped by North Brooklyn Farms, which had a nice view of what was probably the Brooklyn Bridge.

On the way back I took a break and stopped at Unnameable Books and bought Madness, Rack, and Honey, and had a tea and a chocolate chip cookie next door at some fancy cupcake place. It was late afternoon. Golden hour - especially pretty when it’s New York and Fall.

I made it home by way of Prospect Park, locked up my bike, bought some groceries and made a pretty decent salad(arugula, hardboiled egg with chili garlic hotsauce, roasted garlic cloves). I ordered groceries from Amazon pantry on Tuesday and they arrived just before 8pm, so I got double-groceries. I made rice for lunches and did the dishes and now I’m procrastinating finishing some freelance work that I need to do.

Tomorrow, I plan to spend most of the day reading at Prospect Park, and then I’m going to check out a museum or two with Agustin(free from 4-8 on Fridays! apparently).

Last thing: Hito Steyerl, one of my favorite working artists, published a really solid article today considering art as alternative currency and art’s place in finance and culture in a world that’s becoming more unequal and more violent. It’s worth reading. It’s titled:

If You Don’t Have Bread, Eat Art!: Contemporary Art and Derivative Fascisms

Written on October 6, 2016