Producer. Director. Photographer.

Living a Dream

Always take a cut

My biggest fear growing up was striking out without swinging.   The dreaded ‘backwards K’.  Last week I was in SF at the Giants/ Marlins game and caught this guy looking.  Literally.

SF, CA  May 2011

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Trapeze Swinger

I have to listen to this at least once each week. In the words of Sinatra. ‘The perfect marriage of words and music.’


A Taste of Botswana

The view of tourism in Africa

This was the first African Lion my wife and I saw  while traveling in Botswana on our Honeymoon.  I was shocked to see how close we got to him.  He was totally chill and I was terrified as it should be in nature.

The view of tourism in Africa


Summer of Inspiration…(the headphones version)

So lucky. Started when I saw the Smiths in 1986 at the Aragon Ballroom in Chicago but it didn’t really hit me until I saw Elton John in 1988.  I love a live music show more than anything in the world. Song writing and storytelling are distinct arts and when combined become something much more important.  performance and longevity are the inevitable difference makers the ones who can inspire, awe, out live, prove wrong but prove right in the end. I’ve seenMorrissey, Elliott Smith, Joseph Arthur, Dave Matthews, Bob Dylan, U2, The Cure, The Grateful Dead,  Prince and Neil Young more than three times each.  But this summer has taken the cake in good fortune having seen Eddie Vedder, Amiee Mann, Neil Young, Bon Jovi, Radiohead, Wilco and Dave Matthews at the Greek in Berkeley (two weeks).   Radiohead was at the All Points West Festival featuring a stunning sunset, Manhattan Skyline and the Statue of Liberty not to mention Girl Talk who DJ’d a run featuring Jay-Z, Radionhead (paranoid android) and Isaac Hayes two days before he died.  I also finally saw Andrew Bird who went to high school with and blew my mind. These two shots illustrate the vibe.


Summer of Inspiration (part 2 of …..)

 

It's all about footwear even if you;re a dork

It's all about footwear even if you;re a dork

I’ll go chronologically incase, in like 100 years,  they’ll discover that somehow these two blog posts Are actually connected in some spiritual way — I wouldn’t want them to waste their time making the ‘discovery’ that they were posted out of order. So in order…not alphabetical…

 

My best friend Paolo, the guy who taught me about what it means to enjoy a concert. The guy who told me about ‘Jerry’ songs and ‘Bobbie’ songs..The one who had tapes…. He is the kind of  guy who makes you feel stupid by his intelligence and then assures you that you are OK because he has absolutely no idea what is appropriate, fair, decent or fine.  he is all heart, like it or not.  Paolo grew up in NYC and he carries that glow with him– even though he has spent everyday since I’ve known him denying it.   His parents (who i adore) have moved out of Manhattan and to the Hamptons and Paolo and his wife invited me to come spend the 4th of July.  

Yes. I got in a fight on the Jitney with some Indian chick who refused to turn the clicking sound off on her i phone.  Can’t get into it further until my deposition.  I also can’t get too specific with this story because there are people I love involved BUT…The Hamtpons are beautiful.  We surfed. (ditch plains) We kayaked. (some swamp with

 mansions) We ate, and ate, and ate some more.  Paolo and I threw the frisbee, made dinner, made jokes and made certain that our friendship was never going to compromised by his life in LA, mine in NY or anyone in the Hamptons.  At a moment of total comfort and bliss I was overcome by my surroundings and moved to the point of trembling. Surprisingly, it wasn’t the anticipated anger over rich and obnoxious posers or traffic or even P-Diddy.  In a moment, I looked around in disbelief, self aware of my jealousy. My best friend has a terrific wife who IS HIS best friend.  His parents are saturated in the confidence, comfort and joy of each other — somehow for 50 years they have been themselves — total individuals, successful and strong… yet here – in their home a place I do not belong.   We were all one. Of course I’m not talking swinger shit I’m talking about people so COOL…so STRONG….so TRUE that you can’t fake your way in.   I felt part of family a that wasn’t even entertaining auditions. The Hamptons — despite what you expect it be or want it be.  This beautiful place is a canvas of oceans, bays and trees and bugs….but it isn’t about being seen or in the scene.  It’s just a place and it’s nothing without people.  And, regardless of who you think you are or want to be — when you’re alone you’re justing taking up space. I learned, in the Hamptons of all places, that souls mates are not like unicorns as they do exist – good wine should always be shared and family is not about blood or money or anxiety. Family is about sharing, survival and support.  All that said I DID want to look good while in the HAMPTONS so on the night of the 4th of July we went out to Shelter Island for dinner and I brought my best duds.  Paolo told me I look liked a dork. We’ll being a part of society’s elite I’ll let you decide.


The Summer of Inspiration 2008 (Part 1 of …..

Yup. The burden of blogging has beaten me again. I believed my blog was blossoming but blo and behold I’m falling behind.  I’m 36 years old and I have the confidence, wisdom and arrogance of someone who has 36 year old dentures.  I’m not a ‘New Yorker’ as you might think but I do have very strong views about this city, it’s residents and the surrounding ‘mis en scene’.  Whether I like it or not,  despite all the city has to offer and regardless of the great amount of respect I have for it… two components that are inextricably linked to life here are THE HAMPTONS and BON JOVI.   Stop.  I know, you hate them both and so do I.  There two experiences I know less about and could care less about than ‘Summering in The Hamptons’ or ‘Living on a Prayer with Bon Jovi’.   I did both this summer and I’m better because of it.  Great line in the NY Times Sunday Magazine today.  The article was a memoir about a recovering addict — who was a writer and  actually wrote the article.  Ohh yeah.. last line…”I now inhabit a life I do not deserve, but we all walk this earth feeling we are frauds. The trick is to be grateful and hope the caper doesn’t end anytime soon.”  David Carr (2008)  Tell that to GREG NORMAN who is leading the British Open at 53 years old.


Slab City, CA

INTO THE WILD might be the most influential film I’ve seen since DEAD POETS SOCIETY.  I know, the book was better, blah, blah.  The film is great and yes, I too hate Sean Penn.  Without a doubt the greatest location in the film was Slab City (near Niland, CA).  Assuming that Hollywood magic was responsible for the incredible vibe in the film I set out to visit this place.  Middle of no where.  In fact, I was driving 102mph on this two lane road through desert and I got pulled over. Figuring I was heading to jail I rolled down the window ‘fake crying’ only to find out that I had been pulled over by the border patrol search ‘zone two’ for immigrants. He checked my trunk for a little old mexican lady and let me go.  It was like the twilight zone.  I made to Slab City and I was astonished to find EVERY detail the same as in the movie.  For once…not let down by Hollywood, by hippies or by the desire to be inspired.  


blogging on my phone f&$ck yeah!

The san Francisco airport sucks for most things unless you are in the international terminal where they have a great sushi spot. Lots of Japanese. But I’m in the cruddy American terminal about to get another delayed and ove sold flight but I’m alright wit it ciz I’m making a post on my phone. I also have a wired magazine in my bag. I’m such a tool.


My words are ART…and so are yours!!

My buddy Tim sent me this sweet link to site that creates visual art out of written words. I assume it’s a pretty simple java app but the results are kind of fun.  I submit a journal I wrote about 10 years ago and this is what it looks like.  

http://wordle.net/gallery/wrdl/34801/bonoliano


Life lesson number one hundred and elevendy-seven

Just because your mother recommends a book doesn’t mean that it sucks.   Seriously, after a few CS Lewis reads I had sworn off recommendations from my Mom.   Recently she gave me a book called Agent Zigzag about a double agent in World War II named Eddie Chapman.  Incredible story.  This guy went from prison to Nazi spy training to British hero and back to prison.  Read more http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Codename_Zig-Zag   I’m now starting Rock On by Dan Kennedy.