Dip the Vegetables

New York City, July 28, 2015

weather review sky 072715★ Across the flat waters of the river, New Jersey’s windows stared dully through the haze. Sitting down on a bench and staring back for a while seemed as good a use of the day as any. A contrail snake-bellied its way overhead. Down in the upper teens, the walk between avenues was more desolate and defeating than before. Noses wrinkled against the glare. An unassuming pile of trash bags gave off a ferociously sour reek. A very light breeze pushed against the walk back toward the river, making less of an impediment than the hanging humidity was. Even in the shadows of late day, a creeping sweat came on.

Do You Have Permission to Disturb the Peace?

1024px-Tompkins_square_riot_1874In early January, 1874, pamphlets and posters promoting a mass meeting began appearing all around the eleventh and seventeenth wards of Manhattan, the two political divisions of the city on either side of Tompkins Square Park. The pamphlets were short but emphatic. “Winter is upon us, and nearly all employment has been suspended,” began one. “Cold and hunger are staring in our faces. Nobody can tell how long the misery will last; nobody will attempt to help, if we don’t do something ourselves.” Another called the planned gathering “A MONSTER MASS-MEETING OF THE UNEMPLOYED” and invited the jobless, “irrespective of occupation,” and “likewise all those who are in sympathy with the suffering poor of this city.”

The pamphlets were all signed the same way: “–Committee of Safety.” This Committee was a loose coalition of immigrant groups and labor leaders, formed in December of 1873 to organize protests and marches on behalf of the struggling poor. Future labor leader Samuel Gompers later wrote, “It was a folk-movement born of primitive need.” By January 1874, though, its leadership was in flux, with prominent members resigning, as other labor leaders accused it of being a communist organization. Nonetheless, it claimed to have twenty thousand followers.

The mass meeting that was held on January 13th in Tompkins Square did not threaten to turn riotous, until, minutes into the proceedings, officers of the New York Police Department charged into the square. After police withdrew the Blood or Bread Riot became, in press accounts, an overreach by the enforcers of order—but over insurgent forces of communism and revolution. It was neither.

The meeting was a demand for help from a community that was struggling during the worst economic recession America had yet experienced. The reasons for the economic depression that had reached its way across the US and Europe by 1874 were myriad: In 1872, twin urban fires in Chicago and Boston destroyed valuable property, affecting investors across the country, while an outbreak of horse flu hurt crop yields; in 1873, Germany and the U.S. abandoned silver-backed currency, which badly depressed the price of the precious metal; and, perhaps most catastrophically, the railroad bubble burst after decades of speculation and frantic building, which precipitated the failures of banks that had heavily invested in the railroads. One such bank was Jay Cooke and Company, which declared bankruptcy in September of 1873, after it could not find a buyer for a slew of railroad bonds. Cooke’s failure paralyzed the market, spurring more bank failures and a stock sell-off; the New York Stock Exchange closed for ten days. By the end of 1873, over fifty railroads had failed. Unemployment soared and among working class families hunger set in. The crisis reverberated across the industrialized world, to Germany, Austria-Hungary, France, Britain and its colonies. Until 1929, this worldwide economic cataclysm was known as the Great Depression.

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PREFUSE 73, "Prime Meridian Narcissism"


For various idiot reasons mostly involving self-loathing and an inflated opinion of my own capabilities I just spent close to an hour out walking in our current climatic nightmare. I started to get a little loopy toward the end there and the noises that rushed through my head as I decided that it was either sit down or fall down sounded a lot like this, although this is much better and does not feel like passing out. Enjoy.

The Hill's 2015 50 Most Beautiful List, Assessed

No, Yes, No, No, Yes, No, No, No, Yes, No, Yes, No, Yes, Yes, No, Yes, Yes, Yes, No, Yes, Yes, No, Yes, Yes, No, No, Yes, Yes, Yes, No, Yes, Yes, Yes, No, Yes, No, Yes, No, No, No, Yes, Yes, No, No, No, Yes, No, No, Yes, No

Do you want to be a successful comedic actor? Of course you do! Let’s face it, nobody likes or admires you right now and given your terrible personality and lack of future potential in any other industry the only chance you have for people to treat you with respect—or to at least pretend to have respect for you so they can take advantage of you or attain some proximity to your success—is to get yourself on TV or in the movies (or, if you’re really lacking in talent, on the web) as a performer of some kind, and if we’re being honest we’re going to have to admit that you’re not so stunning in the looks department, so really your only shot is making people laugh in the couple of beats before the funny ethnic stereotype character says something about how different it is here in America. It’s not much, sure, but do you know how those people live? It is SO MUCH BETTER than staring at the Internet in the middle of the day and hoping your air conditioner doesn’t conk out. No, you need to be a successful comedic actor and you need to start right now. Here’s how. You’re welcome.#

The Fuckbois of Vine

Screen Shot 2015-07-29 at 11.50.34 AMMaggie Lindemann and Carter Reynolds have had a rough relationship. Unlike most teenagers though, they’re partners and social media stars. Lindemann is a musician and an undeniable beauty—visit her website or her Instagram page, and you’ll find portraits drawn by her numerous and adoring fans that lovingly depict her generous brown hair and elegantly angled eyebrows—while Reynolds, one of the several young men who comprise the Magcon tribe of miniature filmmakers, is a Vine idol with 4.3 million followers.

The two have broken up and gotten back together at least twice. Their most recent rupture occurred at the end of May, according to the troopers behind hollywoodtake.com: “Lindemann initiated the breakup after Reynolds yelled at her over the phone. But the Magcon alum insists he had a right to be upset that she had followed an ex-boyfriend on Twitter. And Reynolds maintains that he was ‘rude’ to Lindemann because he was still emotional over the death of his dog Winnie.”

“A new government report has warned that if a major solar storm – that could knock out electricity and communications for days – hits the Earth, humanity will only get around a 12-hour-warning.”#

Types Of Heat, In Order Of Discomfort

heat17. Parching

16. Piping

15. Torrid

14. Debilitating

13. Smoking

12. Steaming

11. Baking

Do you want to feel old? Look in the mirror. Study your face. Not the lines, although lines you have plenty and you can already see the places where more are soon to show. Not the fatigue under the eyes; that could be from anything, not just from years of living recklessly and without thought for the future, ignoring all sensible decisions as the seconds passed by so silently you never noticed. No, look directly into your eyes. When you stare deeply do you see anything staring back? You do not. You see darkness, a void so black and endless that it stretches into a past before time itself began. Your old dead soul has existed as long as the universe has existed. You are as ancient as anything that has ever walked this earth. You are the living dead, jerking about like some scary articulated dummy that should be stilled forever. Your vacant gaze tells the story of your wizened, corrupted spirit, a spirit that has outpaced chronology itself. Also the Brokeback Mountain movie came out ten years ago, so if you were waiting until the buzz died down to see it in the theatre you might have missed your chance. Also, you’re old.#