Friday, July 29, 2011

Vacation away from my vacation..

As you can imagine, collecting unemployment and being left to my devices 24/7 can be a rough go at times. So to take a break from it all, I decided to hop on a plane and get the fuck outta dodge:

That was from the flight out of  Newark to Munich. The super clean moderness of the plane (Lufthansa) was really awesome. Tho it was over shadowed by the overly friendly and overly large German dude who literally had me squashed up against the window for the duration of the flight. I mean, god forbid a little asian woman or someone similarly small in stature sit next to me. Instead of some massive dude taking up every inch of arm rest and leg space possible. Thanks Kristoff! I feel like this has happened to me the last few times I´ve boarded an aircraft. Fucking PITA..

In any case, my fam and I made it safe and sound and now I´m chillin´ at a internet cafe in Zadar, Croatia surrounded by the stench of eurotrash. Awesome..

Speaking of awesome, check out this snap of my niece having a good laugh to herself about the newly coined phrase: ´Pa-tootey-kiss´

 Also awesome was the colors of this light against the dusk sky:

I´m back to my super shitty laptop screen for retouching so I´m sorry if the colors don´t look all that bitchin´. I´ll likely end up retouching my fav photos once I get back into town. Which BTW won´t be til the end of August :-D

So yeah, sorry I didn´t get a chance to post more before I split. Just had a lot of shit going on and not a lot of time to get blogging work done. I even got my Bringheli Alignment table tools but they came the day before I left. Between running around getting ready for my trip and the fact that it was shitty out I didn´t get a chance to take a nice photo to post. Anyways lots more about that along with a TON of other shit I have to catch up when I get back into town. Til then I´ll keep you mofos as updated as I can with stuff around here. I actually just saw a really great old Torpado with some really nice lugs. I´ll post those pics next time..

Do a search on my blog for ´Croatia´ to see lots more snaps from my last trip here in 09´


Saturday, July 23, 2011

Super fun day at the range with AUTOMATICS!!!

Since Ross was rad enough to take me to do some shooting during my stay in Austin (NAHBS), I was more than happy to oblige him by setting aside a day to hit up Targetmaster just outside of Philly. Not only is Targetmaster an awesome range with Tons O Guns to rent, but they have auto-fucking-matics too! Totally shot some cheesy vids so check it out:

Along with a few stills:

All in all it was a most excellent time!

Then we went to check out the Mutter museum. They don't allow photos so I grabbed a quick crappy one with my iphone:

That place is awesome but after having been three times now over the years I can honestly say I want nothing to do with the place anymore rad as it may be..

We also stopped by to see Brian at his new location and I was super, super stoked on it! Gotta get some snaps of the place during my next visit when I have more time (and it's not his day off)..


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Gettin' all up in mah face!

Interesting cliche' NY occurrence the other night. Between hitting up the beach and showing my boy Ross a good time around town along with a SLAYTASTIC dinner at Brick Lane, I was pretty beat. When we got back to my lady's place it was pretty late but we needed to take her lil pup Niko out for a walk. In other words nothing out of the ordinary..

As we were walking I noticed a bunch of kids walking towards us from down the street. Now, normally my first though is- oh great, a bunch of ghetto kids. Note: I don't care what anybody says or what type, kind, or race ghetto kids are. They all fucking suck in a way that is so far beyond comparison I'm at loss for, well.. a comparison. Anyways, instead of my usual reaction I thought, shit, this dog is going to freak out and start barking like fucking crazy. So I tell my lady to pick up the pace so as not to offend anyone. We get to the corner where there's a garbage can and brightly lit deli. Next thing I know the group of ghetto kids are all around us and one is asking quietly for a dollar. He couldn't have been more than 15 and was half my size. His face is about as dark skinned as you can get with wicked bright white eyes. It was actually awesome how contrasty it was in the backlit bright white lights if the deli's storefront. Visual awesomeness aside, I knew this kid and his group of cohorts were out to harass and intimidate people out in the neighborhood for whatever scraps they could offer them. I can't even tell you how many INFURIATING stories I've heard of people getting fucked with by bands if kids just like this. Unfortunately I left my Glock 18 (that dude is HILARIOUS BTW) at home so I told my girlfriend to walk inside the store with me..

Now, whenever someone on the street asks me for money I try and make it a point to say: 'No, sorry man'. Like, I acknowledge your presence as a human being but it's not my fault you're a broke ass mother fucker and I decline your request to supply you with funds to shoot into your arm etc. I feel like people are rude enough to panhandlers as is so I'd rather not be total a dick about it..

So here I am in the store and I don't even need anything but the deli guys obviously don't want me just hanging around so I grab a drink real quick. As I'm paying I see my contrasty faced new friend staring at me like opening my wallet for someone else is my way of antagonizing him. Great..

He was blocking the doorway waiting for me to come out so I stood in front of him and took a swig. To which he replied 'You a soft nigga'. As if (AS IF!) my obvious attempt at avoiding him wasn't obvious enough. Like not only I'm on to you but I'm trying to avoid instigating something completely unnecessary. Which makes me 'soft' as opposed to, I dont know- smart maybe..? In any case, with the memories of various friends stories of others who've found themselves in similar situations drawing out that angry side of me I asked- 'Excuse me..?' To which he then responded by pointing his finger in my face and saying 'You a liar.' It was at that point that the preverbal beer bottle breaking sound rang in my ears..

That fucked up part of me, that we've all come to know and love, wanted nothing more than to barge out of that door, grab the kid by his waist and neck, get a running start and vault him into the side of the parked car 10' away. I mean I could almost hear that hollow sound sheet metal makes when it gets hit by something blunt with a lot of surface contact. Kind of like the sound two shields meeting on the FIELD OF BATTLE!! Okay, dorkiest comparison EVER but you know exactly what I'm talking about so go fuck yourself and watch 300 for the 10th time..

Instead, I chose to get right back up in his face and shouted- 'You know what?! If you knew the value of a dollar you wouldn't ask me for one! Do you see me walking up to you asking you for a dollar? NO! I WORK for a living! (admitting I that I've been sucking the off the teet of the unemployment office for the past 8 months wouldn't have helped solidify my point so I figured it was a good lie in this instance) 'I'm not trying to start with people out on the street at night because I've got nothing better to do! We're just out walking our dog and trying to mind our own business! I mean come on guys what do you think you're doing?! There's a police station on the other side of the block!!'

It was at that point my now dumbfounded friend must have thought- Wow, I never thought I'd see one of these un-frighten white people in my lifetime! His friends came to the same conclusion and urged him to walk away and he did so quietly. The guys at the deli insisted that I call 911 but I refused citing it was no longer an issue and I'd rather not waste the police's time. Lord knows being a block away wouldn't have helped them get there any faster than usual. Not to mention the fact that when I was those kids age I was all like- fuck you pig! And now I'm the one making the call to rat them out. It's like I'm one step away from waving a cane at kids yelling at them to get off my lawn. Fucking HATE that feeling!

We were about to walk off once they were down the block but then I saw them doing the same fucking thing to someone else. This dude (I use that word loosely) was half my size with a designer man bag so yeah, he didn't stand a chance. I saw him sheepishly reach into his purse to give them something to avoid getting into trouble. It was at that point that I finally made the call. It's one thing when I get fucked with, buts it's another when I have my lady with me or when I witness it happen to someone else who's (WAY) less capable of handling the situation. By less capable I mean less crazy and loud mouthed than I am..

We eventually walked home and naturally I spent more time writing than sleeping I was so worked up by the whole thing. Not so much because I was offended or any of that other butt hurt ego bullshit, but mostly cause it upset me as to how stupidly they acted. I mean, more so than some retarded conservative douche tard with a little bit of power and no dick..

That kid was super young and could have so much more going on in his life if he had even an iota of respect for himself. By the way he was dressed he obviously wasn't starving or in dire need of cash. I'm sure his life isn't filled with as many first world problems as my life might be but that's no excuse to act like a fucking idiot. Him and his buddies were just out for kicks and or experimenting. I mean, my friends and I did stupid shit when we were younger but I guess throwing pine cones at cars and leaving flaming bags of dog shit on people's doorsteps before ringing to doorbell just doesn't cut it for amusements in the city..

I PRAY that I see this kid walking down the street with his mom or something cause mmmMAN would I love to see him get a proper whopping! I'd have been more than happy to do it myself but then it likely would've been misconstrued into some hate crime or some shit like. That or my fat ass would've been stabbed by the cowardly fuckers. It's like, I don't care who the fuck it is that comes at me with some bullshit like that, there's no excuse for it and you'll get deserve sooner or later. I feel like with inner city kids, someone coming back at them verbally is more stunning than with violence. Seems like they see more of and are better capable of handling the latter. It's a fucking shame that my words and others seem to fall on broken and battered ears. No one should have to grow up like that..


The Way Things Go (Der Lauf der Dinge)..

I was reminded of this most awesome art film the other day during a trip to PS1. From Wiki:

The Way Things Go (GermanDer Lauf der Dinge) is a 1987 art film by the Swiss artist duo Peter Fischli and David Weiss. It documents a long causal chain assembled of everyday objects, resembling a Rube Goldberg machine.
The machine is in a warehouse, about 100 feet long, and incorporates materials such as tires, trash bags, ladders, soap, oil drums, and gasoline. Fire and pyrotechnics are used as chemical triggers. The film is nearly 29 minutes, 45 seconds long, but some of that is waiting for something to burn, or slowly slide down a ramp.

I first saw it while in college when a teacher was giving us an overview on early video art. I guarantee that taking 30 min out of your day to watch it will be well worth your time. TRUST ME..

The Way Things Go from Jay on Vimeo.

I showed that shit to my Nephew when he was like 6 and he couldn't take his eyes off it. Watching his reactions were also gold so be sure to check it out and show it to your friends :-)


Friday, July 15, 2011

It would be really rad..

..if these 16mm home movies of a young Greg Lemond and others got into the right hands so the rest of us could see em:

Dude's asking a bit much tho :-/


Thursday, July 14, 2011

First Custom made tool in: Sputnik Stem Jig!

Super stoked to finally receive my Stem Jig from Sputnik tools:

It's SUPER solid and very well constructed. Just have to mess with it and get used to how everything works. Also need to make some sort of attachment so I can mount it on a bike stand or something..

I've also acquired a TON of other shit. I've found that it's a slow process gathering up all the right stuff to suit my needs...and my needs are many!

The one thing that was eluding me for the longest time was finding a proper surface plate. Granite surface plates are a dime a dozen compared to straight up steel ones. Whatever steel ones I could find were either too small or WAY too big and pricey. BUT.. Luckily I stumbled across Moses B. Glick of Fleetwood Pennsylvania and they had a TON of metal surface plates:

Unbelievably enough they had one in the EXACT size I was looking for: 3'x4' (indicated by the :-D face) Tho after walking around for 5 min I could see why- the place is HUGE and has the SICKEST assortment of random shit I have ever seen. I'm dying to go back just to take photos!

The other great thing is that they determin price by weight. At .60 cents a pound my new 750lb surface plate came out to $450! SUPER STOKED!! I was thinking I would have to spend a FUCKLOAD more. While there was a base to it, I opted out to make something myself. I got these super heavy duty caster wheels and priced out some raw steel yesterday at this kick ass steel place in Newark's Ironbound district.. 

The gnarly thing about the plate is how I managed to finagle it into the shop BY MYSELF. Yeah, my arms are wicked sore- from all the double back patting I've been doing! Seriously tho- that shit was a BEAST to move. When I got it they used a fork lift to dump it in the van I was using. I swear the back end dropped like a foot once the plate's weight was on it..

Basically it was a two step process. The first thing I had to do was get it out of the van to return it. I had put a bunch of wood under it so while there was no way in shit it could be lifted without like 8 dudes, it could be dragged out. So I took a nice rope and tied it to a solid spot in my garage and then hooked it on the plate in the back of the van. Then I basically drove the van out from under it while inserting cinder blocks underneath it as I went. Yeah, it was pretty ghetto, hence the lack of documentation.

The next and much more difficult step was to get it into the narrow hallway leading to the shop. My shop  doesn't have garage doors which is why it makes shit like this a HUGE hassle. Fortunately since our brains are our strongest muscle, getting creative on this one was a cake walk for me :-P Anyways, I took the caster wheels and made myself a nice sturdy H shaped frame out of some 2x8" pieces of wood. Then took my handy dandy car jack and slowly dropped one end of the plate onto it. Now here's where it gets hairy. The plate's top is 3x4' and 7" thick. I had a max of like 30" to squeeze through to get to the shop. Which meant that the plate had to be brought in on a steep angle. So with one end on my little ghetto cart, I proceeded to jack the shit out of the other side way up. Two cinder blocks and a few bricks later I had it up to like 60 degrees, all the while being VERY conscious of where my feet were at all times. The last thing I need is that thing falling on me! Once I got it loaded up on the cart and blocks I took a couple of ratcheting straps and strapped it down to the cart to keep it extra steady. Then I just rolled the fucker in no sweat- AMAZING!

While I had no doubt my plan would work, it did seem crazy moving a chunk of steel that big by myself. Even when things seemed to being going perfectly smooth I was reminded of the reality of the situation every time I heard that unmistakeable sound of steel grinding on stone if I put too much force on and awkward side angle while pushing it in..

Next on my to do list is fabbing up the base and caster wheels along with wire wheeling the rust off the top. Once that's all done I just have to drill some holes for the Brigheli frame alignment tools I ordered :-)


Saturday, July 9, 2011

I can think of quite a few people..

..that I'd get a serious kick out of seeing them ride this:

No, for reals. Jiffy pop and a lounge chair is all I'd need..


Friday, July 8, 2011

A really great Presentation.. Adam Savage from Mythbusters:

You really, really need to watch the whole thing to understand exactly what he's getting at. Aaaaaannnd it's pretty awesome!

Watching his presentation reminds me of why I have so many seemingly non ending projects always piling up and you know what?

p.s. - I've always had an affinity for the Maltese Falcon too! WANT!!


Monday, July 4, 2011

Hope all y'allz have a happy Fourth!

Yours truly be enjoying the RAD Fireworks display over the Hudson river from the cliffs of Weehawken NJ:

That video does it NO justice whatsoever! Seeing it in person really is something else. If you're a local you gotta do it. Just make sure you ride your bike over there since the traffic and crowds are REDDIC..

Naturally I have some fireworks on hand for a lil pre-gaming:

Now I just have to go out and get some meats for the grill:

Stoked! It's a beautiful day out here today too. Enjoy!!

Oh and if you're from a different country I guess you're shit out of Luck. Just be happy that you most likely have WAY better health care than we do..