Oversaturated artificial light photography. I love this guy's work.
Further shenanigans in Williamsburg: where hipster Seattle would find the dream of itself.
Last night was too much food, too much SWEPT AWAY and too much wine. A lethal combination.
My friend Amanda is in town, so now I need to go show her how to use the NYPOST to read the future.
Warren Zevon attended by his physcician, Hunter S. Thompson.
Nina Simone passes.
I have long suspected that Hollywood works this way, but it's a relief to realize that it's just a giant BBS run by execs instead of Star Trek fanboys.
Check out the weird art that follows you through the NYC subways.
Rebates suck, if you weren't aware of that.
Dumb but fun:
Celebrity puff-piece of SNL hottie Maya Rudolph.
Eat some pork: Atkins has died. Apparently awesome physical health does not save you from falling down.
Todd Barry's effervescent collection of receipts.
Did you know that the Hilton sisters have a blog?
Did you care?
Tina Fey on the Casablanca remake: "This will be great for people who liked the original but wished it was terrible."
Baghdad Segway store remains unlooted.
Key Republican Not Sure on Patriot Act. You know that when you are losing key *Republicans* that you have a serious problem.
A former executive for banner ad giant DoubleClick has been selected to be the first ever privacy czar. I couldn't INVENT comedy this absurd.
Tom Lehrer rocks the elements in this amusing song & cartoon.
World's largest computer party--5000 computers in an abandoned Norweigan train station. That's a lot of geeks.
It's looking like CNN is the biggest casualty of the war.
Here it is--more details than you ever needed to know about dealing with sand and dust in the Kuwaiti desert.
Check out the woman who takes these photos at moxie.nu
My friend Kristen just wrote me:
I am headed north this weekend to drink 40s and smack up my bitches with the Easter Bunny.
I have had so many home repair situations just like this one, though mine rarely involve eloctrocution.
More chilling effects from the DMCA--no one will publish this book.
GM has been running ads it is now apologizing for that characterized public-transit riders as freaks and weirdoes who smelled bad.
Tony Blair to Cameo on THE SIMPSONS.
The Starbucks Oracle...your destiny in lattes and mochas.
Some of these stories of stupid secuirty measures are absolutely jaw-dropping...it's much funnier to read about them than to live through them, so give it a look.
Now the lesbians are kissing in the daytime? What's next?
Not very smart--when we see our security measures threatened we'll just cease and desist it out of existence. Well, that will certainly not stop hackers, and will stop legitimate researchers who would improve your systems. Goddamn DMCA...it is bizarre that the most intrusive, liberty-destroying legislation we have came to us via Clinton, well before September 11th and the Patriot Act.
An excellent and detailed analysis on the new MetroCard pricing on NYC subways...if you live or work in the city, this is valuable stuff.
Really compelling use of flash for this documentary site about people's relationships with nudity.
Man, it is glorious outside today--spring air, bright sun, clear and unhumid and not-cold and generally non-horrible. It's nearly a perfect Sunday.
I have an immense amount of work to plow through in the next few days, ranging from project related to domestic to paying bills...somehow it has all mounted up on me. Still, it's hard to resist the siren lure of a Sunday--in my little park, the children trying to eat the pigeons and the ice cream truck coming around the corner every three minutes.
BTW, people have been asking me how I find things on the web...here's one of my tricks, a fantastic lookup page designed to cover all your bases in one fell swoop. It rocks.
To be honest, I'm only inside to see if I can get JM on the phone in Texas...I just keep getting sent to voicemail, so I'll wrap this up and get back to the sun I so richly deserve.
Somebody spent a lot of time figuring out what would happen when the Death Star explodes right over Endor. A lot of time.
An oldie but a goody--check out Wired's expos� on Luke Stewart, the chimerical snake oil tech magician that hoodwinked tons of folks with promises of super high speed internet access over power lines.
THIRTEEN SENTENCE SELECTIONS FROM THE ONLINE JOURNAL OF A FAMOUS GAY PORN STAR
Check out the woman who takes these photos at moxie.nu
The military has issued a deck of playing cards with the faces of wanted Iraqi war criminals. That idea is so clever, clean and intelligent it's shocking that it came out of the US military--I'm not used to them "getting" the street like this.
CNN finally gets to speak of the stories they couldn't tell.
I'm off for TechTV--that's this evening at 7:45 EST, with a review and commentary on Netslaves 2.0. See yesterday for all the relevant links.
Oh, and have your choice between two essays on Slate: one inspired and refreshing, the other a little prunish, but honest.
The Migration of Hipsters Along the L Line:
An Independent Study
You hope Saddam’s alive to see this, to see the hailstorm of footwear, the burly men taking sledgehammers to his statue’s polished podium, to see the American flag draped over his cruel empty mug. That last point was one of the more remarkable moments today - the soldier put the flag over Saddam’s iron face, then removed it and replaced it with the old Iraqi flag. It’s a potent message. A show of power, then a show of respect. Our flag first; your flag for ever after. Don’t forget how the latter was made possible by the former.
Read it all here.
Andrew Sullivan hands out the whup-ass with this accounting for journalists certain that Baghdad was an unwinnable city filled with American-killing Saddam loyalists. Some of them even filed their articles yesterday.
"Now no one believes Al-Jazeera anymore." God I hope the Arab street is asking tough questions of itself this morning, at least as tough as the ones the Western world has been asking itself since this conflict began.
Here's a simple guide to the Iraqi celebrations.
My friend Aaron has a plum gig:
"And Lo, Yahweh saw the Cute Juilliard Students and declared that they were good. And He that there must be Press Release, and so he sent Aaron as his messenger to minister to the Cute Students in the ways of the Press Release. And there was much rejoicing."
This Slate article makes an excellent point about expectations--namely that they are, by definition, overinflated. It would be good if I had more to say, but in keeping with the article, I think I'll just leave this hanging so as to
It's a media bonanza! This evening I will be at CBGBs down in the Bowery, celebrating the publication of my friend's fine book, Netslaves 2.0--a fun-filled drive through the wastelands of the tech industry and insights into where we go next. There are bands, an introduction by the vivacious Allison Hemming--it should be a good time. Then tomorrow night I'm doing a piece on the book for TechTV, which should be on the Screen Savers at about 7:45 EST.
And so the missus has departed. She's in Texas for a week to do research for the book sh's writing, leaving me here to hold down the fort. As a consequence I am tired, cranky and overcaffienated...not because of her absence, but because before she departs we engage in a ritual packing at the last possible minute the night before, get to bed around 4am and then get up way too early. I've discovered that this ritual is mandatory, regardless of which of the two of us is doing the travelling--I suspect it is one of the ties that bind us together.
I heard on the radio this morning that it is 26 degrees below normal for this time of year, which I am actually thankful for--if I should discover that this is normal weather I think I would simply give up entirely. I did my news roundup, and it's interesting--with the war component of the Iraq campaign drawing to a close, today was the first day that war didn't entirely overwhelm the morning papers, leaving room for discussion of other issues.
That's fortunate, as this piece of horrible news rose to light--the GOP, led by Orrin Hatch, would like to make the anti-terror legislation they passed last year permanent, rather than letting it expire under the guidelines in the original laws.
I'm just appalled--because I've been supportive of a lot of elements of the war on terror, and of the Iraq campaign, I feel personally humiliated by this move on the part of the GOP. It plays directly into fears that rights are vanishing in this country, and I have to admit that my principal defense has been the time limit the legislature sensibly installed. Now they want to kill the time limit, expand police powers further under the guise of protecting us, apparently in eternity. If their concerns were legitimate they would lobby for a further extension--instead they want a blank check. I am absolutely outraged that I gave these guys a foot and they predictably are trying to take a mile. It reads like a bad draft of Episode 2.
Proving I can throw my cranky, overcaffienated bile (eww) in any direction, here's a lovely expose on our friends at the Ministry of Truth, known by some as the BBC. It speaks for itself, really--the writer was thorough, and does a smashing job discrediting them. As though they needed discrediting--I heard Peter Jennings gently mocking them on air a little while ago. You know that if you've lost Peter Jennings on the left, you've lost the war.
It's sad, because I love the BBC World Service for a lot of things--often, like last night, when I'm up all night packing or cleaning I listen to their droning, which isn't criticism...it is very soothing, and they always have these strange, twenty minute opinion pieces done in "BBC voice"--a flat, downflected and clipped British speech that softly paddles its way into your head as you desperately help your wife choose which socks are warm enough for Texas.
It's sad that when I do listen to them in the future, I won't be able to accord them the same instinctively American respect I generally accord all things that come from Britain.
That infantilism I'll explore another day. I need some more coffee.
Stars Who Insist On Singing. "I Want To Be A Hulkamaniac" is particularly inspiring.
His correspondents sometimes test him, sending him scurrying to find female colleagues and ask them things like "I'm 13 and weigh 102 pounds � what size pantyhose do I wear?" or "What's a brand of nail polish remover?" The job requires deep research into trivial subjects: on his desk is a copy of Men's Health magazine, open to an article about the significance of the location of women's tattoos.
"One of the hardest questions I got was how many tampons in a box," Detective Smith said. "I didn't know. Nobody knew."
Who's 14, Kewl and Flirty Online? A 39-Year-Old Detective
So the worm turns--The Agonist was simply plagarizing. I'm saddened, and now I will avoid him like the plague.
(Follow up: Tynes made the excellent point that the self-correcting nature of the blogosphere works better for both outing and then rectifying this sort of thing than traditional media. I think the jury is still out on that, but it is an interesting point.)
Monday morning, coming down--I'm waiting patiently at my phone for Austrian Public radio to call me from Vienna so that I can do an interview. No idea on the angle of the interview, and so far as I know I'm not a hot property in Eastern Europe (that would be my wife) but I'm doing an interview all the same.
Outisde my window it is snowing. Yes, it is April, mid-April, and it is snowing. Yesterday on the street everyone was talking about the impending storm, muttering, cursing God--we're New Yorkers, we take civic pride in our ability to curse God--but there was a strangely muted property to the proceedings, as though the snow had already fallen and hushed our normally strident tongues. I'm afraid that winter really has gotten the best of us this time. They are saying that there could be up to a foot of accumulation in snow and sleet, but that sounds absolutely crazy.
Sunday was torpedoed by the time shift--it snuck up on me again like it always does, and as always I suspect that my computer has an error on it, since it updates automagically. Why on earth would my laptop suddenly think it was an hour later? Search me...but every time I spend about a minute puzzling over it until it dawns on me that we've crossed the terminator and lost or gained an hour.
So it screwed up a conference call I was going to do, and our misjudging of the sunlight made us arrive at the grocery store just after it had closed.
I'm back--the Austrian interview went well. It was a British interviewer who had really enjoyed the book, which was easier than doing an interview over a crackly line with a thick Austrian accent, but after watching COLLATERAL DAMAGE over the weekend I was kind of hoping for a deep Schwarzeneggerian voice asking me about my halcyon dot-com days.
I need to dive into the Monday work pile, now that the interview is over and really make a dent. The HBO project is off my plate for a little breather, which gives me a chance to catch up on the book and the show. First some coffee, the Post and a muffin. Glorious muffin.
It really is snowing to beat the band.
Further examination of the bizarre Hunter S. Thompson/Ted L. Nancy/Jerry Senifeld letter hoax nonsense. Kudos to Pat for unearthing this.
That's a huge squid.
It's been a big couple of days over here at Daisey labs--I am a hairsbreadth from having the HBO synopsis completed, which is in turn only a step to having the pilot entered, which is a step away from having the pilot approved--yes, Virginia, life is a series of Legend of Zelda-esque quests where you take the four elemental jewels to the tops of four sacred mountains, thus gaining the sacred texts that show you the location of the secret, forgotten City of Plot Twists. It may be tiresome, but I do take some comfort in how predictable it has all become.
On the sacred text front, all the bloggers of earth are chatting about these Rumsfeld poems. I have to say that I really love them--I think they scan beautifully, and while my sense of artistic judgment in matters poetical is a couple of years rusty, I'd say that some of this verse is far better than the crap that occasionally springs up in the New Yorker. See if you can do it yourself--take a moment and discard the situational humor, and simply read the poems as poems...his repetition is hypnotic, and the spareness does evoke William Carlos Williams in a very real fashion.
War in poetry, war in life...day before yesterday there was a bomb threat at one of the Starbucks where I sometimes while away the hours typing. Given that this is NYC, i was in another Starbucks at the time, but "refugees" from the shut down Starbucks converged on my location--looking for power outlets, caffeine and solace. The workers sat downstairs, stunned by their sudden and unexpected freedom. What would they do with their day? Thy wondered out loud when laurel Canyon was playing at the local cinema, so in typical Brooklyn fashion I broke in on their conversation to tell them the movie times. They were happy for the update.
As I typed this, my friend Pat wrote in with this pearl:
"Strip away the phony tinsel in Hollywood and you'll find the real tinsel underneath." - Oscar Levant
Tonight I am seeing the Umbilical Brothers perform their show before it opens up Off-Broadway. They are great guys, and I'm really looking forward to their kinetic comedy--when Don Rumsfeld and possible bombings have been the highlights of my last few days, I know I'm ready to laugh.
Via Pa Tynes:
"You know the world is off tilt when the best rapper is a white guy,
the best golfer is a black guy, the tallest basketball player is
Chinese, and Germany doesn't want to go to war.
Via Ray: The WB Network has ordered six episodes of WHO WANTS TO BE A SUPERHERO, a reality show with a comedic element (hey, wasn't that THE GONG SHOW?) that takes ordinary people and dresses them up as their idea of superheroes. After donning the spandex, the contestants then attempt to successfully complete tasks that one might find a comic book character engaged in.
Glenn Reynolds has a simple way Saddam canprove he's still alive."