Several years ago, in the Spring of 2003, I endured one of those moderately shattering moments of identity crisis – a break-up – and resorted to drugs to ameliorate its effects. Included among the expected substances and liquids was the powerful drug of technology, specifically a new gadget, even more specifically a neat-o cool-o camera attachment that allowed you to take 360 degree photographs. There was a period when I never left the house without it. Like the other drugs – and often in concert with them – this new gadget made every single situation, every street corner, totally fascinating.
Also, when you’ve gone through a break-up, one feels like a bit of a freak; the camera attachment was a strange looking contraption that in the spring of 2003 looked vaguely threatening; in order to take a picture that did not include you in it, you had to put in on your head and crouch down. There is something liberating about feeling a bit freakish and then backing it up with freakish/foolish behavior.
There was a visit to a Williamsburg bookstore with the funny camera, where we took photographs of the stylish, bemused clerk, Kyp, relaxing on a summer’s day. It was later pointed out that this is the awesomely coifed and very talented Kyp who plays guitar for TV on the Radio
Also featured in this piece is author Bryan Charles, who has just been commissioned to write a book on Pavement’s album, “Wowee-Zowee,” no doubt in part because of this essay.
(Update: The book is out!)
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Kyp and a friend and their smokes, Sunday, April 27th, 2003. Pig Lib on the stereo.
Bryan Charles examines an original hardcover edition of Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa’s novel, “The Leopard.”
Kyp on Sunday: no worries.
Charles holds the new issue of The Baffler, which contains an excellent piece by Mike Newirth about police corruption in Los Angeles, and another excellent piece about how rock music became racist, which begins with Prince having bottles thrown at him when opening for the Rolling Stones in 1981. The piece examines the evolution of rock and blames this state of affairs – the disco sucks era and beyond – on the Eagles, more or less, all of which seen from the vantage of 2007, seems somewhat serendipitous in light of the success of TV on the Radio.