Saturday, August 27, 2005

Ray & Nes over tea

11:31:31 AM ray: here's my plan
11:31:31 AM nes: go for it
11:31:42 AM nes: mhmm
11:32:21 AM ray: albert once said, showing me his passport photo, that he dressed up and made himself look old fashioned on purpose.
11:32:36 AM ray: in fact, he made up an entire personality around this photo:
11:32:39 AM nes: uhuh
11:32:59 AM ray: a different name for this shipping tycoon from 1930s shanghai
11:33:10 AM ray: who led a glamorous, itinerant life
11:33:54 AM ray: meanwhile, check out this bicycle poloing
11:33:55 AM ray:
11:34:42 AM ray: and from there i started exploring the dandyist-dressed up people who use it as a sort of anarchist tool for overturning the bland world around us
11:34:48 AM nes: lol that's hilarious
11:35:05 AM ray: i showed it to bon and we talked about it until 2 in the morning
11:35:10 AM ray: it was wonderful
11:35:56 AM ray: here's the website for the London-based Chapism movement
11:35:57 AM ray:
11:36:34 AM ray: they hold annual "Civilize the City" events that function as art-demonstrations (in both senses of demonstrations)
11:36:52 AM ray: now, how do I fit into all of this?
11:37:17 AM ray: part of what they make fun of is the actual old-fashioned british conservatism.
11:37:43 AM ray: but they use old-fashioned conservatism in order to critique present-day complacency
11:38:31 AM ray: but how do i do it? am i heir to british stodginess?
11:38:47 AM ray: what will people recognize in me?
11:39:02 AM nes: this last one u sent looks more american than brit
11:39:21 AM nes: "give three-piece a chance" <- brilliant
11:39:37 AM ray: it's difficult to say just what is american and british giving that people'll draw from each other and confuse things, don't you think?
11:39:37 AM nes: ppl already think ur a dandy so no worries
11:39:43 AM ray:
11:39:49 AM nes: yeah i suppose
11:40:01 AM ray: but i need to get to something that no one else can.
11:40:13 AM ray: because otherwise i'm just posing, aren't i?
11:40:17 AM nes: well ur asian, so u've got it covered
11:40:31 AM ray: which part do i have covered?
11:40:50 AM nes: the fact that ur not white
11:41:00 AM ray: which means that i'm unique in being a dandy?
11:41:12 AM nes: ur unique in being an asian dandy
11:41:21 AM nes: actually no that doesnt make sense
11:41:40 AM ray: i think i see partly what you mean... being an anglophile asian dandy is unique.
11:41:42 AM ray: but.
11:41:57 AM ray: even though that's the case, i impersonate less effectively.
11:42:14 AM ray: people can see the difference as dress-up, which is part of the critique, sure, that asians can dress up as brits
11:42:15 AM nes: unless u go for a strictly asian conservative business look
11:42:23 AM ray: ah, but there's more
11:42:30 AM ray: that's where albert comes in
11:42:50 AM nes: ppl in japan already look like they're old fashioned
11:42:55 AM nes: the suits
11:43:10 AM ray: his alter-ego as a romantic nostalgic Shanghai shipping tycoon is actually used as a critique of modern day blandness, even if he doesn't think so
11:43:40 AM ray: he actually found a moment (and place) in history where there actually were asians as western dandies
11:44:07 AM ray: cute
11:44:33 AM ray: so if people see me dressed up and say, "well, that's funny, but it has no historical basis in fact"
11:44:42 AM ray: then i can point to the details in my dress:
11:45:00 AM ray: this tie tack is from the 1930s, which is what shanghai dandies would've worn
11:45:05 AM nes: as if ppl would say that
11:45:24 AM ray: people can think all sorts of things that they never know how to articulate
11:45:53 AM ray: historical legitimacy is important, otherwise, people would be right to say you're just dressing up
11:46:21 AM nes: but u are
11:46:30 AM nes: we always are
11:46:49 AM ray: people would at first think i'm just dressing up, but the revolutionary moment (the moment when they'd have to confront their lack of knowledge) is when i point out that this actually has historical legitimacy and they better acknowledge that
11:46:59 AM ray: of course we're just dressing up all the time
11:47:09 AM ray: but people forget that VERY easily
11:47:20 AM ray: which is why we dandies have to dress up
11:47:29 AM ray: so we can remind everyone that they're dressing up to
11:47:30 AM ray: too
11:47:33 AM nes: if anyone says "well you're jsut dressing up" then u can say "so are you"
11:47:34 AM nes: lol
11:48:00 AM ray: no one ever understands that. they might understand that in a rational way, but few people feel it
11:48:05 AM nes: have u heard of the new wong kar-wai film?
11:48:09 AM ray: just think about the way you talk about hipsters
11:48:13 AM ray: you're bored with them
11:48:24 AM ray: you like more laid back, "authentic" people
11:48:24 AM nes: i'm bored with ultra-hipsters
11:48:44 AM nes: but it's hard to tell who's authentic when uve just met someone
11:48:56 AM ray: my guess is that you're bored with people who constantly show up how we're dressing all the time
11:49:14 AM ray: they're constantly on-guard, and you're bored of people being on-guard, when in fact they're on guard all the time
11:49:19 AM ray: they meaning everyone
11:49:29 AM nes: not only that, but go overboard and hit every element of a style
11:49:32 AM ray: actually, part of my inspiration is from wong-kar wai
11:49:55 AM ray: even the gap is all about boredom down to the smallest detail
11:49:59 AM nes: yes, i love that in 2046, everyone dresses like in the past
11:50:01 AM ray: very thought out
11:50:25 AM ray: days of being wild is the informal first movie to 2046 and in the mood for love
11:50:41 AM ray: in the final scene of days of being wild, there's a long shot of a dandy dressing up
11:50:47 AM ray: that has no connection to the rest of the movie
11:51:04 AM ray: that actor ended up being the star of in the mood for love and 2046
11:51:15 AM nes: it's the same characters
11:51:27 AM ray: but he only shows up for 5 minutes in the first movie
11:51:32 AM nes: neat, never heard of that one
11:51:37 AM ray: so he's not really one of the characters in days of being wild
11:51:40 AM nes: u know.. i'm pretty bored with myself
11:51:50 AM nes: but fashion is apparently expensive
11:51:58 AM nes: especially the ultra-hipster look
11:51:59 AM ray: that's the interesting part... that one's role in a movie can be reduced to a fantastic moment of simply dressing up
11:52:16 AM ray: it doesn't have to be expensive. hipster is boring when it's expensive
11:52:28 AM ray: actually, it's more complicated than that
11:52:32 AM nes: i know. that's why i have a love-hate thing going for it
11:52:56 AM ray: but historically-speaking, many of the people writing about dandyism said that it's about impersonation of aristocracy without actually being one
11:53:23 AM ray: and so part of the basis of dandyism is looking expensive without having spent all that much on it.
11:53:31 AM ray: it's about using aesthetics to make up for money
11:53:40 AM ray: or to show that money is simply the easy way out
11:53:44 AM nes: i dont know if i wanna look expensive
11:54:04 AM nes: sometimes yes, i guess when i'm looking especially ratty and i see someone looking especially spiffy
11:54:25 AM nes: trying to figure out what it is about them that makes them look spiffy and new
11:54:39 AM ray: it's part of the entire plan that when people who ask me where i get things, i always get to tell them that i got it from a vintage store rather than ben sherman or something equally boring
11:54:56 AM nes: i dont even know what ben sherman is
11:54:57 AM ray: spiffy is only one part of the spectrum
11:55:10 AM nes: u know u should be blogging this
11:55:16 AM ray: you can wear a screenprinted tshirt and people will still wonder where you got it
11:55:24 AM ray: if i blog no one gives a shit
11:55:40 AM ray: that's because the people who read our supposed site don't give a shit
11:55:47 AM nes: well u should definitely be recording it somewhere
11:55:50 AM ray: no. one. gives. a. shit
11:56:16 AM ray: and that's what the entire chapism thing is about: it's showing people who don't feel as if they have to give a shit that they ought to.
11:56:35 AM ray: because otherwise the system is going to think for them and through them
11:57:00 AM ray: post this online if you think it's important.
11:57:20 AM nes: i wouldnt' know how to structure it
11:57:35 AM ray: just post it as a conversation. bon does that on her LJ

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Not my type

Monomaniacs, raise your hands!


Tuesday, August 09, 2005

If you were a Death Row cook...

... screw low-fat ingredients.