Thursday, September 30, 2004

Knit Night is Back

Originally uploaded by sugarfreak.

Whoops, forgot to mention that Atomic Knit Night is back! Wednesdays from 7-9pm here at the store lounge.

We may change it up by going over to the new Golden West Bar one night a month to knit in public. Just check our events page to see what's going on.

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Baltimore Library Lectures

Originally uploaded by sugarfreak.
Benn's on the Baltimore County Library Lecture circuit in October. He'll tell your kids a thing or two about comics. Don't ask him how to draw manga, though.

photo by Jackie Nickel

Monday, September 27, 2004

Saturday, September 25, 2004


This is a test post from flickr, a fancy photo sharing thing.

Update: You can find me on there as Sugarfreak.

Better Late Than Never

Here are some more pics from the premiere night of A Dirty Shame.

Josh Speiser, budding paparazzi/stalker, got some great pics that night.

The infamous water bottle

With Mink Stole

Like an Old Movie House!

With Waters himself!

Friday, September 24, 2004

A Dirty Shame Opens Today

A Dirty Shame, the blog?

It opens across the country tonight!

A great review of the movie on eebmore.

Best of Benn

The City Paper's Best of Baltimore party is usually a night of drinky hijinks for winners of BOB and basically anybody else who can snag an invite.

Held at the Belvedere, on the 12th and 13th floors, the line for the elevator snakes around the lobby about a dozen ways, with the wait being at least half an hour long. Every year people try to use the stairs (can't) and every year there are fights because some people don't believe in standing in line like everyone else (because they won Best of Baltimore, dammit. They're special!).

This is Benn's favorite part of the party. You get to watch people, see who got dressed up, how they dressed up, and wonder what category they had won, if they had indeed won anything.

So after waiting for almost an hour, and after way too many people had cut in line, the people around us were all getting pretty fed up.

That's when I noticed two ladies standing right in front us who hadn't been there a minute ago. I motioned to Benn. And that's when the party started.

Benn asked them to get to the back of the line. The crowd, on the edge and having a couple of party gals to take it out on, circled around. The gals pretended ignorance, "We didn't know we did anything wrong and now everyone is yelling at us!" No one was buying it. A gentlemen behind us, said to the ladies, "You expect a certain level of decorum!"

But the gals were adamant about being there "the whole time."

"I guess when you're the Hilton sisters you don't need to wait in line like the rest of us," Benn said, and then, louder, announced to the lobby, "HILTON SISTERS!! LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, LET'S HEAR IT FOR THE HILTON SISTERS!"

There was a smattering of applause.

"Ew!!!!" One of the gals made a face and raised her hands up as if Benn had splattered something on her. "You're an asshole! You're an asshole!"

But they finally left. The mood had lifted. People behind us were pleased to be in line after Benn. We were almost at the elevator.

But these people had somehow snuck in front of me. Don't think I didn't notice.

I just didn't care at this point and didn't want another fight.

The elevator ride is always extremely unpleasant. If you've never suffered from claustrophobia this is your chance to get a true taste.

You start hearing the bass of the music around floor 10. When the doors open you're ready to get a drink. It's always a good idea to get 2 drinks at a time or else you'll be spending all your time in line.

While it's a fun night, I'm constantly looking out for the "Hilton Sisters" because you know that drama ain't over.

Party, party, party...and then it's time to go. And guess who's super drunk and ready for another round? Ladies and gentlemen, the "Hilton Sisters"!

They spot Benn and start fighting all over again.

"You're so rude! You called us the Hilton Sisters! We don't even like them!"

Benn tried to make nice, "It wasn't an insult. A lot of people find the Hilton sisters attractive. But your boobs, those can't be real."

This was a challenge that the really blonde one couldn't let pass.

She[fire in her eyes]:They are real! You want to touch them?!
Benn[making sure I'm there with my camera]: Um no, but you could show them to me .
She: Ok, but you have to touch them so you know they're real!

And then somehow, after that challenge was won, she felt better about Benn. And then, magically, they all became friends.

And then it became a theme for the rest of the night.

At the Spy Club:

With Martino

On the street with random people:

A verdict on the oxygen bar:

Geoff say nay

Thursday, September 23, 2004


It's that time of year when practically every day is a friend's birthday.

Today is Benn's! He's ooooooold. 36! Make sure to point that out if you see him today.

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

The Signal

There's a new radio show in town, kids. It's called The Signal.

Lisa Morgan came in the other day and interviewed me for this week's show. Don't listen to it for me though, because I was still pretty braindead after Hampdenfest. Listen to it for an interview with Davy Rothbart, from Found Magazine.

And guess what? There's a Dirty Found coming in November!

Monday, September 20, 2004

Another Underground Fire?

No wonder it's been so quiet around here. There's a fire underground downtown. Again!

An overnight fire that damaged underground electric cables and sent flames shooting from a manhole near City Hall forced several downtown street closures and knocked out traffic lights at some intersections, authorities said today.

Sunday, September 19, 2004

Beautiful Day in the Neigbhorhood

After 8 months of planning, Hampdenfest was a success, especially considering how it could have ended up. Thank you, bands, for bringing the rock, thank you, volunteers and vendors, for helping out and sticking around. I wish I had taken more pics, but once the fest got under way I was pretty much stuck in the store.

Of course, today is beautiful.

(Yesterdays entries will be updated in a few minutes with pics.)


Maggie was humping this rabbit.

And the new Golden West Bar opened on Hampdenfest.

Saturday, September 18, 2004

Apathy Cured Youth

A few hours ago this young woman, in what one could call punkish attire, asked for "the manager". I stepped up, and she lodged a complaint about the "preponderance of misogynist, anti-feminist" blah blah blah stuff that we carry (jesus, I wish I taped it, because then I'd know if she really used the word "preponderance" or did I just feel it?)

It was cute in a way. She was all worked up. I thought she was about to crack I was smiling patiently, waiting for the punchline. Lauren thought she was about to cry.

She pivoted away, not waiting for a reply, so I just yelled "Thanks!" at her back. I'm glad she's fighting the good fight. Everyone knows we need to be taken out for keeping women down!

First Complaint About the Music

A woman just came in to "put in a complaint" about the music. I assume she was talking about Fascist Fascist.

"I just don't think kids should have to listen to that."

Here Comes the Sun!

Patience pays off.



If you're a pro like Ostrowski's Famous Polish Sausages, you were set up and ready to go by 9:30am.

They sat and laughed at all the whiney babies.


Cats and Dogs

Man, it's pouring now.

Street Forecasters

Word on the street (since there are radio stations setting up here at the festival and they're keeping up on the weather) is that the rain is over. If you watch the loop it's all heading east and away. By the time the Festival starts at 11am things should be fine.

We're getting a bit of a late start setting things up, but we've started later before. I wonder if I can keep updating every hour for the rest of the fest? I'll do updates to add pics from the day at the end.


It's getting light. A little drizzle is nothing. We've had worse. You can't be in the Outdoor Festival biz if you can't take a little weather.

Benn and the other co-chairs are out on the street giving everything the onceover, twice. There are already booths and tents set up.


Sunday Makes Me So Mad

It's 6:30 and it's stopped raining. Of course, it'll rain some more. They're calling for rain for the morning, but hopefully merely scattered showers for the afternoon.

Sunday, clear skies.

Friday, September 17, 2004

Friday Blogabout Mish Mosh

Hurricane season is an awesome thing. I've been glued to the Weather Channel and CNN when Anderson Cooper gets flung around like Mother Nature's naughty ragdoll.

Just so you know, Hampdenfest is on rain or shine! Rain will make it even more festive. Sure, it won't be as muddy as Woodstock but there's going to an ADULT Moonbounce, people! Adult Moonbounce.

I'd like to take this time to point you to 1, 2 very entertaining blog entries. We've got a lot of very talented bloggers here in Baltimore. Whatever the hell that means.

It's going to rain all day. Hope our deliveries don't get wet.

And yeah for the Pirates of Essex.! They raised over $4000 at Bengies (and due to a matching program it's really over $8000!) this past Sunday. Fun was had by all!

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Why I am Not a Photojournalist

When I don't have my camera, I always see things I want to shoot. When I do have it, I don't feel like taking it out. "Oh yeah, people would want to see that," is a phrase that goes off in my head after the moment passes. It's a chore to get the shots that people expect, because I'd rather wait for inspiration. In other words, I'm a slacker. Thank god I don't do weddings anymore!

The word for yesterday was clusterfuck. One of Waters' assistants used it to describe the Avenue when she dropped off some signed books. She used it again, later, when I saw her outside the Senator, "You better get in the theater and get seats now. It's a clusterfuck in there." And then, at the after party at the Walters, the word was used to define the scene to me by a few more people.

I guess you could use the word to describe the movie as well, but in a good way. It was hilarious. There are probably things that only people from the area would find really funny (making fun of DC people, Harford Rd jokes, seeing nice big slabs of Scrapple) but everyone enjoys wacky squirrels, right?

It was like the opposite of Stepford Wives, with a Dawn of the Dead feel, but without the creep.

Before the movie began, live video of Waters, Selma Blair, Johnny Knoxville, Mink Stole, Ziggy, I mean, James Ransone, and others unveil a new slab of sidewalk in front of the Senator.
(photos coming! promise!)

John Waters gave a speech, introducing his parents and the stars that were there.

And here's Maggie and Josh (who worked on the film). Look, she made him wear a tux.

Over $80k was raised for AIDS Action Baltimore! Yay! Executive Director, Lynda Dee, can continue spending her days, as she put it, "fighting Republicans".


Waters is on right now on The Marc Steiner Show.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004


The Last Freak Show is an exquisite book of Japanese sideshow banners, which has a very different aesthetic than American sideshow banners.

Service Photo

What timing! Just when I needed a new camera Service Photo has moved to Hampden! I couldn't ask for more convenience then to just hop over to Falls Rd and pop in before work to get a decent little digital camera. Jesus, these cameras just get smaller and lighter...I wonder how long it'll be before I can just have one implanted into my brain.

Just charging the batteries now and I'll be good to go for the premiere of Dirty Shame tonight.

Monday, September 13, 2004


Ok...I'll just say that my digital camera has been misplaced. Like maybe permenantly. I don't want to say stolen. But it was on the counter right after I had taken some shots of a beautiful book on Japanese Sideshow Banners.

Oh well. It was old, anyway. But no more pics until I get a new one.

It's the saddest of all for you guys. If only you could see sideshow banners.

Saturday, September 11, 2004

Something Else to Remember

Never Forget? Is that even a possibility?

THE September 11th happened our first year here in our new Hampden location.

This September 11th, Baby Doll meets Andrew WK at the store. Whew, that's much nicer.

The Sun Also Effs Up

Wow, if it weren't for Bookslut I would have missed this article printed in our own Baltimore Sun this past week. But then she gave it such a good reaming that you don't really have to.

Friday, September 10, 2004

Thursday, September 09, 2004

What's My Density?

You know what's really weird? When you're at work and trying to blog a big long post about how you just got the high score on Centipede after trying for almost a year (not that it's my best score EVER but it's been a while since I've broken 100,000. Maggie somehow erased the high scores from last year!)...and then Crispin Glover calls for you.

What was I doing again? Oh yeah.

My High Score:

Saturday, September 04, 2004


The new Mexican imports shop has opened today here on the Avenue. Benn scored this Mexican wrestling mask.

Thursday, September 02, 2004

All Mighty Senator

The Premiere of A Dirty Shame will be on the 14th at the Senator.

If there are any tickets left for the general public they should be on sale any day now. The event will be a benefit for AIDS Action Baltimore.

UPDATE:Tickets go on sale tomorrow morning at 9am! This is the number to call: 410-837-2440

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

September is Love

We just got in the brand new issue of Cinema Sewer. Which oddly, has an article on Don Knotts in the Love God!! Do you have your tickets yet?

And also, the last issue of Nest, with another installment of the Chris Ware comic, previous installments of which were included in McSweeney's 13 (which is sold out people! There will be a reprint though, you lucky bastards).