Thursday, June 29, 2017

T-Shirts I Have Known: Tofu Kills People

This is not my t-shirt, but I snapped a picture of it years ago at the 5th Avenue Festival in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn:

I took it to show my friend Chris, who has gone by the nickname "Tofu" since college. It popped up in my social media feed because it is Chris' birthday, and so it seemed fitting to post here today.

I would love to have this shirt, but it is selling for $88 on eBay and, honestly, I don't want it THAT much.

The shirt originates from Thai conceptual artist Rirkrit Tiravanija. According to an article at Wired (here):
Rirkrit Tiravanija's goodie bag for attendees contained a shirt that said "Tofu kills people," a reference to an inside joke after a guest in a pop-up kitchen announced the statement to a crowd.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

T-Shirts I Have Known: Mötley Crüe

I like to tell people that I was a Mötley Crüe fan early, Too Fast for Love being one of my first few metal albums, and buying Shout at the Devil when it first dropped in Hawaii.

Here's some photographic evidence:

That's me and my mom on the Big Island in Hawai'i, at Volcano National Park, definitely in the 1980s. I want to place it my junior year in High School, so around 1984.

That Crüe shirt is long gone, but I was delighted to see a version of the original design is still available online:

I'm fairly certain my shirt didn't have the "Too Fast for Love" at the bottom, or the pentagram. It looked a lot more like this "vintage" shirt, circa 1983, and listed on etsy for $125:

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Prelude to Fifty

Not sure who reads this anymore, and also whether it is wise to post unpublished poetry here. However, this piece is more pensive than publishable, so I'll just leave it here.


The pen feels odd in the hand.
A decade crumbles like bark
stripped from the tree.
It's not another birthday poem,
it's the anticipation of one.

Fifty seems more final.
More than half of a life,
unless you plan on becoming
a centenarian.

These could be my final words.
A glass bites my lips,
the lager limps
into my mouth.
I remember being proud at 18:
No beer for me, just
One Five One rum -
real man's drink.
Foolish me.
How to imagine
a parallel life
of other choices?

Even my handwriting has grown old.
Once crisp and legible, age has
made it lazy (my hand) and I just
let the ball point it's way across
the page.

Volumes of thoughts
Pages of poems,
shipped across the continent
and scanned into the cloud.
Like taking a scalpel
and cutting out a pound of flesh
and sealing it away.
Amazing -
the blocks of paper that
captured a decade and a half
and all that people
will care to find
memorialize my Facebook page.

It is a testament
to waste.
No one will learn
Just go on living
Scrawling indecipherable lines
to be forgotten.

~ ~ ~

Brooklyn, June 26, 2017

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Funny Shit My Aunt Sends Me: Redneck Mini Blinds

No need to clean or dust -- just tear off and flush.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Cool Shit My Aunt Sends Me: Shadow Puppets

What A Wonderful World: Australian Magician Raymond Crowe performs a wonderfully entertaining Hand Shadow act set to the song of 'What A Wonderful World' by Louis Armstrong.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Funny Shit My Aunt Sends Me: Fwd: FW: : Fwd: Signs of the Time


Tuesday, June 13, 2017

T-Shirts I Have Known: I Think Therefore I Spam

This baby is running a little small, so it is in the reserve collection. It's pretty self-evident.

Monday, June 12, 2017

T-Shirts I Have Known: Bern! Bern! Bern!

This is still in the collection, but most likely won't be worn any time soon. The wounds are still too fresh.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

T-Shirts I Have Known: Jews Kick Ass

This photo, of me and my brother, is still in my collection. I generally don't wear it often outside, for fear of someone taking it the wrong way. Nothing of note has happened to date.

In case you were wondering, the ass-kicking Jews on this shirt are Henry Winkler as Arthur Fonzarelli, Albert Einstein, and Sammy Davis, Jr., in the top row. Also, Jesus, William Shatner, and Bob Dylan in the bottom row.

Friday, June 09, 2017

T-Shirts I Have Known: Hendrix at the Waikiki Shell

Here's a shot of me roller skating in June 2007:

I loved this shirt, but it only fit for a second. It was a fancy shmnacy shirt from Century 21 Department Store that had an odd brand - it may have even been European.

The shirt is a print of a Jimi Hendrix show at the Waikiki Shell in Honolulu on May 31, 1969. I spent many years living near Kapiolani Park, where the Shell stage was. We could occasionally hear music from performances in our home nearby.

The location of the show was what made this shirt so special, although the concert occurred when I was just under 2 years old and living on the mainland in the final year of my parents' marriage.

I held on to this shirt for six or seven years after I outgrew it, size-wise, and then donated it. I should have sold it on eBAY. I would have likely made money back.

I regret letting this one get away so easily.

Wednesday, June 07, 2017

T-Shirts I Have Known: The Clash

I currently own this Clash shirt:

I have had this for several years, but have only worn it a handful of times.

I'm fairly certain my wife got this for me at H&M, and they seem to have sold a similar version recently.

The shirt has an odd cut on the neckline (not visible above), but it's a comfy wear around the house. There seem to be a lot of varieties of this shirt, but nothing exactly like it readily available online.

Monday, June 05, 2017

Saturday, June 03, 2017

T-Shirts I Have Known - Nirvana

For no other reason than "because," I am sharing my t-shirt collection here.

This is the first post in this series.

Perhaps someday I will look back and sigh, "Oh, I miss that shirt!"

Perhaps I will share other t-shirts not belonging to me.

This is a Nirvana shirt I found in early 2017 at a thrift shop in Baltimore.

Most Nirvana shirts you see are the ones with the sick smiley face on them.

I thought this guitar one was cool and original.

I just searched, however, and discovered this can be bought at Wal-Mart online for $13.90. Oh well, the cool factor just dropped a little.

Generally, this is a sleep shirt.

This concludes the inaugural t-shirt post on Billyblog.