…And Keep Looking Up

Quite often during high school I would come home from a party or a late night hanging out with my friends and see my brother sitting in the living room with a glass of sun tea flipping through the channels. Often my brother would come home from an evening of partying or hanging out with his friends and find me with a coke watching Teletunes.

We would usually excitedly tell each other about our evenings. And inevitably we both sit down in the living room, late in the after-curfew hours, and tune into PBS waiting for the Star Gazer to come on (It was originally designed to air on PBS stations just before sign-off). We would listen intently to what the star hustler had to teach us during his five minute lesson on the heavens. Both of us would then mosey out to the backyard and look up into the stars and see if we could find whatever it was he was talking about that week.

We would sit there silent and feel small and special. These are some of the fondest teenage memories I have with my brother (and I have a ton of fond teenage memories with my brother). And although those memories will never die, the mortal symbol of those evenings, “The Star Hustler”, passed away today. I am genuinely saddened.

Colorful to the end, “Horky” offers this amusing, self-penned epitaph in his bio: “Keep Looking Up was my life’s admonition, I can do little else in my present position.” You can watch his last episode by clicking here.

Andrew WK: Harm

Despite all the rumors Andrew WK is human after all. Or at least his persona is had the all-too-familiar angst/lust/confusion of a typical 17 year old. He recently published an article in the Gaurdian about obsessive feelings he had towards his girlfriend and how he ended up expressing those feelings through song. A song that ended up leading to a juvenile restraining order.

It turned out that the assistant to the head of school got a copy of my song on cassette and gave it to the girl I had a crush on. This was probably the worst thing that had ever happened in my life. She heard the song and was completely freaked out. Within three days, every kid in school had a copy. She told her friends, teachers and parents: “This guy at school is stalking me and threatening my life.” She played them the song and they called the police.

The song is actually pretty good for a crazed 17 year-old. Have a listen (The lyrics can be found below th fold) and then go read Andrew’s full account of the embarrassing event:

Andrew WK – Harm

Also, yes I’m very aware that this story is likely not true and simply part of the Andrew WK “project” (marketing machine) and is simply just a story. For that, I may actually appreciate it even more.
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Rocky Mountain Pinball Showdown

I love pinball. It’s physical. Getting to push around the machine. Slam my hips into it just hard enough to avoid the tilt – but still manipulate the game. It’s frustrating in the good kind of way, like a puzzle. It takes concentration and a little muscle.

As a child I grew up playing pinball at Celebrity Sports Center and actual arcades. I rediscovered it my junior year in college. I played a lot of pinball in college. I even won a few contests held at the student center.

A few weekends ago I went to the Rocky Mountain Pinball Showdown and had a blast. I played for about five straight hours. Fifteen dollars, all you can play. At some point in the evening they turned out all the lights and the warehouse, filled with 91 pinball machines, transformed into a dizzying blur of flashing lights and loud zoinks, bonks, sirens, and bells. It was like some sort of surreal, geeky Las Vegas. My wrists were killing me by the time the night was through. My evening consisted mostly of this:


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Fresh

This is a story all about how my life got twisted upside down. And I liked to take a minute and sit right there and tell you how I became the prince of a town called Bel Air. In west Philadelphia born and raised, on the playground was where I spent most of my days.

Chillin’ out maxin’ relaxin’ all cool and all shootin’ some b-ball outside of the school. When a couple of guys who were up to no good. Started makin’ trouble in my neighborhood. I got in one lil fight and my mom got scared, she said your movin’ with your auntie and uncle in Bel Air.

I whistled for a cab and when it came near, the license plate said fresh and it had dice in the mirror. If anything I can say this cab is rare, but I thought naw forget it yo homes to Bel Air I pulled up to the house about 7 or 8, and I yelled to the cab, yo homes smell ya later. I looked at my kingdom I was finally there. To sit on my throne as the Prince of Bel Air.