Monday, February 09, 2009

White youth, black youth / Better find another solution

A guy on CNN’s Voices Of Recession (yes that’s what they named it) emailed in to say that he knows things are bad in the nation as he can no longer afford to supersize his value meals anymore.

Yes I know that things are bad, but the USA is positively revelling in its economic malaise. Aside from the women who had 8 kids (which is all the talk on the street, in the tabloids and on the radio), that’s about all you hear from the 5000 TV channels in our hotels.

It seems to have replaced the WOT (no longer governmentably copyrightable as a phrase as Obama has tossed it aside) as the calamity of obsession here. The channels are full of folks who have lost their jobs; folks who might lose their jobs; folks who know someone who lost their jobs; folks who own a business that relies on folks who might or have lost their jobs; folks who have lost their homes; folks who might lose their homes; folks who are providing support for all these folks and everything else in between. And the more the chatter chatters on, the more self-fulfilling it all seems to become as a nation staggers into the media proclaimed disaster.

But for all that you can feel the anger at the bonuses and the banks and the years of Enrons and Halliburtons and AIGs. A taxi driver last night (I love talking to taxi drivers and listening to their often impenetrable reasoning) wondered how long it would be before the nation took to the streets, which, as unlikely as such a thing might appear to a lad from a placid muted democracy like NZ, where we’ve just elected a formless amoeba as a PM, there is a history of across the centuries here in the US.

And in between the talk It's quite fascinating, and more than a little unpleasant to watch the vultures shamelessly swoop..there are bizarre glossy fast talking extended advertorials on daytime TV from people offering to sell lists of tax foreclosure properties and turn, what is increasingly being gleefully called a depression where there are only two sorts of people: the rich parasites and those decent real people who work for them, other's misery into your profit.

Maybe, they should start though, by reducing the size of the servings….


Sunday, February 08, 2009

Will you stay in our Lovers' Story / If you stay you won't be sorry


I guess even anthropologists have a sense of humour.

My, my my, we're treating each other just like strangers /I can't ignore the significance of these changes

Last night we wandered down East Houston at about 10.45 pm. All was pretty much as you’d expect. 45 minutes later we walked back and came across this:


In the three quarters of an hour this car had, a few metres from our hotel, caught fire, and been gutted in a fairly dramatic way. There was no-one, either police or private, seemingly in charge of the charred wreck, which was pulling in fair number of camera phone toting late night wanderers.

An hour later we walked past and it was gone, with hardly a trace, apart from the remains of the back seat on the sidewalk. That too was gone this morning…not a marker as to what happened last night, in a fairly dramatic way, left.

I guess it makes a change from battling the incessant cold, or trying to work a way out of the Heavy Metal bar we found ourselves in, in Williamsburg, earlier in the evening, which was a very Pee Wee Herman moment.