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Casimir Nozkowski’s New York stories

October 1, 2009

The Baseball Card Movie

Every once in a while I like to watch something on Youtube that doesn’t star cats or Natalie Tran. Rare, I know, but shit happens. Two of my recent favourite clips have been short documentaries by Brookyln director Casimir Nozkowski.

“The Vend Diagram” features The Internets Celebrities, Rafi Kam and Dallas Penn, whom Nozkowski has collaborated with before on films about hacking McDonald’s and buying junk food at the corner bodega. Their stuff is silly but also able to spotlight economic disparity in marginalized communities, without pandering to liberal heartache or romanticizing lower income neighbourhoods. Basically, they keep it real. Here they tackle something a bit more serious, roaming NYC chatting with street vendors about how the recession has affected their business. It’s funny, it’s smart, and it slid under the radar because it lacks an obvious punchline and is over five minutes long.

The other video I’m digging is “The Baseball Card Movie,” where Nozkowski spends time hanging in a sports card shop finding out who the fuck still buys baseball cards anymore. I tried to write a similar article awhile back (prior to seeing this clip), and I’m not ashamed to say Nozkowski’s clip kicks my article’s ass. Dollar values may change over time, but the film shows the sense of community, tactile enjoyment and quirky addiction that has kept the hobby alive over the years. Nozkowski makes me feel incredibly nostalgic even though I’ve never seriously collected cards and I’m not from New Yawk. I mean, York.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. that bitch shauna permalink
    October 1, 2009 11:43 pm

    Thank you so much for this. Especially the Vend Diagram one…I’m gonna have to ‘hit the streets’ for my own shit soon enough..this is really nice to see. hope people will engage me half as much as they do these guys. Great post.

    No but seriously I feel like vendors and ‘informal’ sector workers are on the front lines of the economy, I would love to see what something like this looks like now in the Caribbean. Probably not too pretty…

    “his warm nuts are gonna stimulate the economy” ahahahahaha

  2. Simon permalink*
    October 2, 2009 3:48 am

    The Baseball Card movie is fucking poignant man. Just the sight of crumpled wrappers and plastic boxes brings me back. I was into baseball, but mostly hockey and some marvel comic cards.

    This actually reminds me a ton of sneaker culture — driven almost entirely these days by grown adults reliving their youths.

  3. October 2, 2009 12:06 pm

    Shauna: Lol I hope stuff is going well for you over there. Cop me an ODB shirt. And don’t forget: “Sleep is the cousin of death.” “And naps are the cousin once removed, that you can have sex with.”

    Simon: I’ll trade you a gold-foiled Magneto for a Wolverine if you’ve got.

  4. Simon permalink*
    October 2, 2009 12:49 pm

    You know what’s sad? I really do have a hologram Wolverine.

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