Colbert Lampoons Bush at White House Correspondents Dinner-- President Does Not Seem Amused:
A blistering comedy “tribute” to President Bush by Comedy Central’s faux talk show host Stephen Colbert at the White House Correspondent Dinner Saturday night left George and Laura Bush unsmiling at its close.
Colbert, who spoke in the guise of his talk show character, who ostensibly supports the president strongly, urged the Bush to ignore his low approval ratings, saying they were based on reality, “and reality has a well-known liberal bias.”
He attacked those in the press who claim that the shake-up at the White House was merely re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. “This administration is soaring, not sinking,” he said. “They are re-arranging the deck chairs--on the Hindenburg.”
BELLACIAO - CHERNOBYL : Hell on Earth, the world’s worst environmental disaster in 1986 - Joan - Collective Bellaciao:
He took precautions but he also kept meticulous - albeit illegal - records of his own accumulating exposure. Every year the authorities told him he was "fit for duty", and when he left Chernobyl they gave him a letter saying he had received just under the safe lifetime dose of radiation. He knew he had received more than five times that amount.
What he saw in those years, he says, appalled him: young men dying for want of the simplest information about exposure to radiation; the wide-scale falsification of medical histories by the Soviet army and the disappearance of people’s records so the state would not have to compensate them; the wholesale looting of evacuated houses and abandoned churches; the haste and carelessness with which the concrete "sarcophagus" was erected over the stricken reactor; and, above all, the horror of seeing land almost twice the size of Britain contaminated, with thousands of villages made uninhabitable.
It was sometimes surreal, he says. He had people beg him to leave their homes or villages contaminated because that would guarantee them a pension; he recalls how several carriages of radioactive animal carcasses travelled for five years around the Soviet Union being rejected by every state, returning to Chernobyl to be buried - train and all. He helped fill a 4 sq mile dump with radioactive lorries, cement mixers, trains and helicopters. He knows where the Chernobyl bodies are buried, he says, because he was the grave digger. "We made up the response as we went along," he says. "It was hell."
AP Wire | 04/26/2006 | Last ninja: 'Be able to kill your students':
NODA, Japan - The teachings of Grand Master Masaaki Hatsumi echo through my head as he entreats me to attack a blackbelted disciple with a practice sword. "Always be able to kill your students," he says.
Chilling words from a shockingly fit 76-year-old man who bills himself as the world's last ninja and stocks his training chamber with weapons such as throwing stars and nunchucks. Especially to a neophyte whose closest brush with martial arts was watching Bruce Lee matinees as a kid.
As I cautiously raise the sword with a taut two-handed samurai grip, my sparring partner gingerly points to Hatsumi. I avert my eyes for a split second - and WHAM! The next thing I know, I'm staring at the rafters.
Phonecam Photoessay #1
I visited the Whitney Biennial for free, because I'm talking with people there about working on a commission.
A piece of outsider art in the bathroom stalls at the Whitney. I like the self-effacing quality of this graffiti--as though the Biennial has forced their hand, and now they have to "mark" and "own" the negative space of the bathroom stall. (That would be my crit theory essay.)
A film projection of someone re-enacting Charlie Chaplin's speech from "The Great Dictator" in sign language, looped. Now it looks like a portal to heaven, or perhaps just a white glob.
Robin des Bois on Smith Street, shortly before I hurt myself on an errant olive pit in the middle of an intense emotional conversation with my wife.
Poster for JB on Broadway, from the Performing Arts Library at Lincoln Center where I'm doing research on Barnum and Brecht. I was in JB in 1992. I played the voice of God, and every time I performed it, I was naked "for dramatic effect and resonance." I was young.
This is the worst logo I have ever actually seen designed. JM spotted it in our neighborhood—it's theoretically to protest police brutality to medical marijuana users, but I think it's my eyes that have been punished.
My friend Lawrence, seen again after too-long absence. His lovely wife Larissa is in the window. He is recounting how there is a colony in France that writers and artists can go to, but that it will be broiling hot and that the dogs attack the artists in the streets. I do not think we will be going to this colony.
The Polenblog - Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about the Polenberg Twins. » Oh IM Madness, how I’ve missed you. . .:
drplacebo: i’m going to get a gyro.
Twin C 723: ok - i’ll be here, gyro
Twin C 723: did you ever know that you’re my gyro. . .
Twin C 723: i just asked a manager if she needed anything from office depot.
Twin C 723: she tells me: I need one of those notebooks people use to take notes at meetings but I am not sure you can get them there. Do you know what I am referring to? (That other manager) might use them too.
drplacebo: did you say “you mean the ones… with paper in them?”
Twin C 723: almost
Twin C 723: Is it 8 ½ by 11 inches or smaller? Wirebound or more like a pad? Lined paper or blank? Anything special about the cover?
Twin C 723: i thought those were good questions.
Twin C 723: not “DO YOU THINK I READ MINDS?”
drplacebo: and most importantly: does it have a picture of a kitten on it?
Twin C 723: kittie!
Twin C 723: Does it fit in a Trapper Keeper or a Data Center?
drplacebo: is it controlled by the Master Control Program?
Twin C 723: Does it have a black and white speckled cover?
Twin C 723: Does it only say “yes” or “no”?
drplacebo: no no no no nnonononono
Twin C 723: Ut oh.
Twin C 723: MY RECOGNIZER A SPLODE
He-Man Jew-Haters Club:
For seven years, Seattle artists and audiences unwittingly supported a coterie of paranoid racists who managed the Odd Fellows Temple on Capitol Hill. In 1995, Matthew Richter, then performance editor of The Stranger, went undercover to find out who they were and what they were up to. By the time this story was published, on August 16, 1995, Richter had received multiple death threats and traveled with a bodyguard. This is the first article in what became a three-part series. —Eds.
A grand unified theory of YouTube and MySpace. By Paul Boutin:
I was skeptical when I heard how huge video-sharing hub YouTube and social-networking hotspot MySpace have become. YouTube claims 40 million plays a day, up from 35 million just a week ago. The Washington Post recently reported that MySpace pulls more monthly visitors than Amazon and is closing in on AOL and eBay. Both sites are vague about their traffic details, though, so I ran them through Alexa, the traffic report generator favored by techies who don't trust press releases. I nearly fell out of my chair. On Alexa's charts, MySpace is an order of magnitude bigger than Friendster. YouTube will pass CNN any day now.
But the focus on the collaborative nature of these sites has been nagging at me. Sites like Friendster and Blogger that promote sharing and friend-making have been around for years with nowhere near the mainstream success. I've got a different theory. YouTube and MySpace are runaway hits because they combine two attributes rarely found together in tech products. They're easy to use, and they don't tell you what to do.
House Speaker Dennis Hastert of Ill., center, gets out of a Hydrogen Alternative Fueled automobile, left, as he prepares to board his SUV, which uses gasoline, after holding a new conference at a local gas station in Washington, Thursday, April 27, 2006 to discuss the recent rise in gas prices. Hastert and other members of Congress drove off in the Hydrogen-Fueled cars only to switch to their official cars to drive back the few block back to the U.S. Capitol.
The Stranger | Seattle | Film | Feature | Once More with Feeling:
United 93 gets around this problem by eschewing traditional characterization: Though all of the (nonprofessional and low-profile) actors are portraying specific passengers, it's next to impossible to sort out who's who. We see them as their fellow passengers did: a mass of strangers and sudden allies, not individual saints. Other choices take the movie in a direction that satisfies action-movie expectations, even as it abandons the historical record. The passengers in this movie don't take a democratic vote about their course of action (as they actually did—a historical fact championed by theorist Elaine Scarry as evidence that it's possible to quickly and democratically respond to crisis post-9/11); instead, burly thirty- and fortysomething guys decide to do something and others seem to fall into line.
Team Party Crash: Daily Candy’s Book Party - Gawker:
If you don’t know what Daily Candy is, you must have a below-average tolerance for shopping tips dressed up with sickly sweet cartoon graphics. Either that, or you’re a guy. You see, every last un-fat chick in New York — and dozens of other cities — gets a mind-numbingly chipper email every day from these ladies. If you don’t believe me, ask your girlfriend. This is how they know where to shop and what color lipstick to wear and which day in spring is the official “Girls Start Wearing Skirts Day.”
Holy Bea Arthur in a bathing suit--someone else's photostream of our shows are out in the world. I can even see other photos from this person, see their contacts...ah, the precarious joys of the internets.
Judge Embeds a Puzzle in 'Da Vinci Code' Ruling - New York Times:
LONDON, April 26 — Justice Peter Smith's 71-page ruling in the recent "Da Vinci Code" copyright case here is notable for many things: the judge's occasional forays into literary criticism, his snippy remarks about witnesses on both sides, and his fluent knowledge not only of copyright law but also of more esoteric topics like the history of the Knights Templar.
But there is more to it than that. Embedded in the first 13½ pages of the ruling is Justice Smith's very own secret code, one that when partly solved reveals its name: the Smithy Code.
"The key to solving the conundrum posed by this judgment is in reading HBHG and DVC," the judge writes in the 52nd paragraph of the ruling, alluding to his code and referring to the two works at issue in the case —"The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail" and "The Da Vinci Code" — by their initials. (In the United States, the book is called "Holy Blood, Holy Grail.")
A very cute Tekserve Ad with over $60,000 in ipods.
And You Thought Abercrombie & Fitch Was Pushing It? - New York Times:
Strewn around the vintage 1970's couches, you're likely to see an assortment of fabric scraps and prototype T-shirts beside samples of unusual light bulbs that Charney wants to test for store displays. On his desk sit copies of Playboy from the 1980's, their pages carefully annotated and tabbed with colored stickers denoting their depiction of socks, pants, T-shirts, electronics, car designs and other markers of style from the period. Next to these is a stack of come-on letters from television and film casting directors hoping to get Charney to supply them with the kind of fresh and unusual faces on display in American Apparel's provocative print ads. Further over you'll find some books that Charney has been consulting, including a collection of Andy Warhol's early hand-painted works; "The Concise 48 Laws of Power," by Robert Greene; and "The Medium Is the Massage," by Charney's fellow Canadian Marshall McLuhan. Pinned to the rear wall is some classic National Geographic-style cheesecake: pages ripped from a 1975 "Girls of Polynesia" calendar.
And this beautiful building is going to become...a Borders!
Some would be indignant & rant on how unfair this is...but I have to say, it used to be a BANK. At least now I'll have a reason to wander inside and see the architecture. It's on the ground floor of a tower many believe to be the most phallic building in New York City.
Brief mention of GREAT MEN OF GENIUS in May's L Magazine, on newsstands now. My favorite pull quote:
Mike Daisey makes storytelling sexy...he takes autobiographical anecdotes to insane levels of hilarity.
MWAHAHAHAHHA! My plan for storytelling domination is nearly complete—I now have to only capture "cute," "Hamburgler-esque," and "tremulous" for the win!
Making Light: "Fanfic": force of nature:
Well, I live in a state that owes its name to fanfic: California is named after the island of California, home of Queen Calafia, her beautiful black amazons and their man-eating griffins, as all detailed in Garcia Ordonez de Montalvo's Las Sergas de Esplandian, which was the Sword of Shanarra of its day, a highly unauthorized but popular sequel to the much more highly respected Amadis de Gaul, more The Lord of the Rings of its day. At the end of Don Quixote, Cervantes had this to say about Esplandian: "Verily the father's goodness shall not excuse the want of it in the son. Here, good mistress housekeeper, open that window and throw it into the yard. Let it serve as a foundation to that pile which we are to set a-blazing presently."
That being said, Las Sergas de Esplandian was the pulp novel the conquistadores had on board when they sailed around and encountered the Baja peninsula. What's more, when the Portola party went up the coast, thinking the descriptions in LSdE were based on actual travelers' tales, they thought the California condors were Queen Calafia's big black man-eating griffins.
And so on to the present day where California is ruled by Conan the Barbarian.
Shooting Just Now on Capitol Hill:
There is a dead man on his back in the street outside Twice Sold Tales, on John Street, half a block east of Broadway. I have a perfect view of the scene from my apartment window. The man is naked but covered in a white sheet. His face and body and legs are hidden from view, but his white feet are poking out of the sheet. Clumps of his clothes are next to him. (Some people in the building watched the cops strip him naked and got a look at all his bullet wounds.) His shoes are off and they lay near his feet. The dead man is white and he lived on the street, according to a chaplain who explained a little bit about what was going on when I arrived home to my block cordoned off in yellow tape about a half an hour ago. Apparently the dead man was wielding a gun and was perceived to be enough of a threat by the cops—some say he was firing the gun, everyone’s account is different—that they shot and killed him. A minute ago three cops were scanning the exterior walls of Perfect Copy & Print, presumably looking for bullet holes. Another just shined his flashlight on an old-fashioned hand pistol with a wooden handle on the sidewalk just in front of KT Imports (that’s the sign on the empty storefront between Perfect Copy & Print and Twice Sold Tales). They’re not touching it.
I discovered this while cleaning out a bookshelf, and I thought I'd scan it, as it seemed perfect Mike's Blog material. Check out those extraordinarily realistic landscapes!
Ah, those were the days, weren't they?
Article in Variety about GREAT MEN OF GENIUS:
Mike Daisey has always performed without a net. His best-known work, "21 Dog Years: Doing Time @ Amazon.com," was an unscripted monologue -- an ever-changing account of his stint with the Seattle-based Internet megastore, delivered live Off Broadway every night for six months straight.
But now he's practicing an even riskier high-wire act. This month, Daisey debuted four improvised monologues titled "Great Men of Genius" on four consecutive nights at Seattle's Capitol Hill Arts Center. That's four premieres in a row with nothing sharing his spotlight but a table, a chair and a rudimentary outline written in longhand on yellow paper.
Read the whole thing here.
Rabbi Moses Teitelbaum Is Dead at 91 - New York Times:
Moses Teitelbaum, the grand rabbi of the Satmar Hasidim, one of the world's largest and fastest-growing sects of Orthodox Jews, died yesterday in Manhattan. He was 91 and lived in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
THE LONELY PLANET GUIDE TO MY APARTMENT :
My Apartment’s vast expanse of unfurnished space can be daunting at first, and its population of one difficult to communicate with. After going through customs, you’ll see a large area with a couch to the left. Much of My Apartment’s “television viewing” occurs here, as does the very occasional making out with a girl (see “Festivals”). To the north is the food district, with its colorful cereal boxes and antojitos, or “little whims.”
P&Ls and how books make (or don't) money: part the first: the mass market original complete failure:
In which I explain how we figure out how much money to pay authors for their advance, and also in which I explain how sometimes books make money and sometimes they don't.
Richard Eckersley, 65, Graphic Designer, Dies - New York Times:
In 1989, however, Mr. Eckersley made a radical departure from his signature restraint, shaking up the field with his design for Avital Ronell's "Telephone Book: Technology, Schizophrenia, Electric Speech," an unorthodox study of Jacques Derrida, Martin Heidegger and the philosophy of deconstruction. This was the first book Mr. Eckersley designed on the computer, using new page-making software programs to interpret the author's complex postmodern ideas typographically.
Although the stark black-and-white cover of this long vertical book was rather quiet, he radically dislodged the interior text from conventional settings, and the book's layout sometimes upstages the text by deliberately impeding the act of reading, which is just what Ms. Ronell wanted. Throughout the book there are unexplained gaps and dislocations between sentences and paragraphs, forcing the reader to work at reading. On one page is a mirror image of the page that faces it. On another, snakelike trails of space that come from careless word spacing (called rivers) are intentionally employed. Some words are blurred to the point of being indecipherable; one line runs into another because of the exaggerated use of negative line-spacing.
Man Writes Poem
This just in a man has begun writing a poem
in a small room in Brooklyn. His curtains
are apparently blowing in the breeze. We go now
to our man Harry on the scene, what's
the story down there Harry? "Well Chuck
he has begun the second stanza and seems
to be doing fine, he's using a blue pen, most
poets these days use blue or black ink so blue
is a fine choice. His curtains are indeed blowing
in a breeze of some kind and what's more his radiator
is 'whistling' somewhat. No metaphors have been written yet,
but I'm sure he's rummaging around down there
in the tin cans of his soul and will turn up something
for us soon. Hang on--just breaking news here Chuck,
there are 'birds singing' outside his window, and a car
with a bad muffler has just gone by. Yes ... definitely
a confirmation on the singing birds." Excuse me Harry
but the poem seems to be taking on a very auditory quality
at this point wouldn't you say? "Yes Chuck, you're right,
but after years of experience I would hesitate to predict
exactly where this poem is going to go. Why I remember
being on the scene with Frost in '47, and with Stevens in '53,
and if there's one thing about poems these days it's that
hang on, something's happening here, he's just compared the curtains
to his mother, and he's described the radiator as 'Roaring deep
with the red walrus of History.' Now that's a key line,
especially appearing here, somewhat late in the poem,
when all of the similes are about to go home. In fact he seems
a bit knocked out with the effort of writing that line,
and who wouldn't be? Looks like ... yes, he's put down his pen
and has gone to brush his teeth. Back to you Chuck." Well
thanks Harry. Wow, the life of the artist. That's it for now,
but we'll keep you informed of more details as they arise.
The Rockmart Journal:
A Rockmart family is being sued for illegal music file sharing, despite the fact that they don’t even own a computer.
This came as shocking news to the Walls family, who were notified of the lawsuit Friday afternoon by a newspaper reporter. James Walls, speaking on behalf of his wife and family, said they have not been served with legal papers and were unaware of the lawsuit.
After being shown a copy of the court filing, Walls said he found the whole thing bewildering.
“I don’t understand this,” Walls said. “How can they sue us when we don’t even have a computer?”
Outside our door. It's spring.
Seen in my local Met supermarket. WTF?
small spiral notebook - Shock:
In the test I reacted only mildly to foods I have eaten without incident many times. The shrimp barely showed up. He suspects it is an issue of combination: alcohol, an allergen, and exertion like dancing—in other words, "fun"—and next thing I know I am in the hospital. But we can't say for sure. I could be wrong about the whole shrimp guess. Maybe it's peanuts. But maybe it's almost anything.
The allergist gives me a pamphlet on anaphylactic shock. Among the symptoms: "a sense of impending doom."
The Todd Shipyards, also known as New York Shipyards, have now beeen closed and will soon be demolished for a masive Ikea store. Philip Lopate in his book "Waterfront" describes an incident in which the crew of a damaged Central American freighter were detained here for 6 months until its owner could pay for repairs. Its crew was too afraid to venture into the Red Hook streets for provisions. The owner had to get food for them. The Monitor, the first ironclad vessel from the Civil War era, was once repaired here.
Gothamist: Brooklyn's Broken Angel Building:
The building is a work-in-progress by Arthur Wood, a "self-taught" architect and painter. It resembles a Brooklyn tenement version of a Antoni Gaudi building-- compare the exterior to the Sagrada Famiia church, or Casa Battlo in Barcelona. According to this Times article from 2002, Wood bought the building in 1971 for $2000, and has been working on it ever since.
Gothamist: When A Penny Costs More Than $.01:
This week the cost of the metals in a penny rose above 0.8 cents, more than twice the value of last fall. Because the government spends at least another six-tenths of a cent — above and beyond the cost of the metal — to make each penny, it will lose nearly half a cent on each new one it mints.
Philips device could force TV viewers to watch ads | CNET News.com:
An invention from Royal Philips Electronics prevents TV viewers from switching the channel during commercials or fast-forwarding past commercials when watching DVR content.
Viewers would be released from the freeze only after paying a fee to the broadcaster. The freeze would be implemented on a program-by-program basis, giving viewers a choice at the start of each one.
Way Upstairs, Downstairs - New York Times:
I see a person wearing jeans, and I can't imagine that he's a millionaire. I see a person I'm told is worth a billion and wonder why he's not wearing a tie. I see his Bentley and mistake it for a Lincoln, which is really just a Ford, and then out of that Ford steps a major movie star. I see a Cadillac, and I find out that it belongs to an immigrant gypsy-cab driver who shares it with his two brothers-in-law and parks it in the garage where all of them live.
Win a date with E.J. Dionne. By Michael Kinsley:
No, in the end, I have to be honest with myself. These days, my dream doesn't involve bedbugs and jackals, but a five-star hotel in Rome. That's why I have decided instead to enter the Times' next contest: "Win a Trip With Tom Friedman."
Tom writes: "The world, as you know, is flat. If you're not afraid to fall off the edge, if you dream of running up travel expenses that would finance Hannibal's army, if you fantasize about meeting presidents and prime ministers and reminding them that the world is flat, if you can go to Davos and Aspen and Bilderberg and still get it up for the Bohemian Grove, then you may be the right person to accompany me on a unique 'World Is Flat World Tour.' We will be staying in the best hotels and interviewing world leaders day and night. You may find yourself discoursing in Arabic about the flatness of the world with a group of Saudi princes, or even asking the Pope himself, 'Do you agree with Tom Friedman that the world is flat?' All it takes to apply is a 700-word essay on 'Why the World is Flat.' " Tom himself will choose the winner, and they'll immediately be off to St. Petersburg, where you will get to operate the PowerPoint for Tom's presentation titled: "Flatter Will Get You Nowhere: The Limits of World Flatness."
The Thing In Dome B
The Stranger | Seattle | Features | Feature | Policing the N-Word:
Titled "The Thrilling Exploits of Chas Mudede AKA the Scholar Nigga!" the cartoon was written and drawn by two white artists, Ivan Cockrum and Lara Seven, who purchased the comics page during the Strangercrombie charity auction, which, among other items, sells sections of the newspaper to raise money for Northwest Harvest. What upset the person who approached Secrest was that the cartoon figure of me, a black man, was called "Scholar Nigga." Secrest contacted The Stranger and arranged a meeting to address what she believed to be a flagrant act of racism. I went to this meeting with the publisher of the paper, Tim Keck, on a blustery day and did most of the talking. I explained to the three concerned members of the NAACP that I had actually cleared the cartoon because it wasn't racist, but a kind of homage to my work. The cartoonists were not only knowledgeable about my writing but also the inter-paper conflicts I've had with other local writers. In the case of "Scholar Nigga," it was Samson Spears, a black hiphop critic for the now-defunct magazine Tablet, who gave me that title. The cartoonists were aware of this and other aspects of what I write, such as my intense love for German philosophy, and also my intense loathing for animals from Antarctica.
My explanation hit a brick wall. The NAACP didn't care about inter-paper conflicts, or the fact that it was a black man who called me a scholar nigga. Their position was simply this: The Stranger had inappropriately used the n-word. The meeting ended with her requesting that our paper never use the word again, except for critical purposes—that was the NAACP's policy.
~stevenf: More on Tech Complexity:
Top executives from Samsung, Microsoft, and Intel were unable to use their own devices at a promotional demonstration.
A battery that was supposed to last three hours lasted only a few minutes. A Samsung VP was unable to navigate to page 2 of his PowerPoint presentation after launching it, finally requiring assistance from some nearby staffers.
A Microsoft exec was also unable to start his presentation, and when his aide got it going, it whipped through all of his slides in just a few seconds. Finally an Intel exec, after joking about the first two presenter's difficulties was hit by the same.
My point here is not "huh huh MS suxx" but to raise the question: what the hell happened?
UK drivers trust GPS more than their own eyes - Engadget:
Drivers passing through the village of Luckington have found themselves landing in the River Avon, by following a GPS-recommended route that pointed to a bridge that has been closed for a week. Despite warning signs on both sides of the road, and nothing but water straight ahead, local villagers have found themselves pulling an average of two cars a day out of the river for the past week. "When you ask what happened, they say, ‘My sat-nav told me it was this way,'" one resident told The Times.
Jean-Michele's fantastic creation this evening—seared sea scallops with baby fresh tomatoes, steamed asparagus with hazelnuts and a wild rice pilaf with orange accents.
A really good interview on Powell's: Unlocking Jonathan Safran Foer
Dup's Blog: English Comps Teachers of the World Unite!:
Here are some of my early attempts at writing a thesis for this paper:
• Roy Cohn in Angels in America and Satan in Paradise Lost both are catalysts for change within their epic structures however Cohn is totally gay while Satan is a daughter-raper.
• Whereas Roy Cohn is human, Satan is a fallen angel, serpent and later a full on dragon.
“If you can talk brilliantly about a problem, it can create the consoling illusion that it has been mastered.”
Stories at The Moth and The Moth Outreach Program invite you to
New York Stories
From the program that brought you a captured stowaway from Guyana, a 14-year-old beauty pageant contestant, and an Apollo Theater champion, among many other unique New York voices, comes our favorite Moth show of the year, featuring graduates from our community outreach program, Stories in Stages, alongside hip-hop legend Darryl "DMC" McDaniels and This American Life contributor Jack Hitt.
Wednesday, April 19
Sponsored by TNT and Target
Stories told by:
Darryl "DMC" McDaniels
Sherman "O.T." Powell
6:30 pm Doors Open
7:30 pm Stories Start on Stage
at The Players Club
16 Gramercy Park South
YouTube - Manchester's Passion - Jesus sings "Love Will Tear Us Apart":
No, it's not a joke--it's an adaptation of the life of Jesus, set in modern Manchester's streets, with songs by Joy Division, Morissey and the Smiths.
They plunder, they slaughter, and they steal: this they falsely name Empire, and where they make a desert, they call it peace.
- Tacitus, Agricola 30.
Team Reichert presents: Stories that go nowhere:
When Reichert took the stage, I wanted him to launch into what he stands for, what his party stands for, what he hopes to accomplish, etc. I wanted meat. I wanted to be able to size him up. Instead, this is what I got: “President Bush’s tax cuts are working… Change is tough…Dreams are still happening. I read Dr. Seuss the other day….” Which flourished into a story about a little boy Reichert spoke with who wishes to grow up and be a paper cup stacker, and how he, Reichert, wants to help create a nation where this little boy can follow his dreams and stack cups for a living. People in the audience were nodding their heads as if they, too, wanted to help poor children learn to stack cups. Like their plates of soggy eggs, the crowd appeared to be lapping Reichert’s bizarre ranting up.
Reichert also spoke of having a recent man-to-man chat with Cheney to dispel rumors that he was avoiding the VP because of his low approval ratings, “and then [Cheney] offered to campaign for my opponent!” The audience guffawed. I winced. When is joking about your colleague’s low approval ratings good campaign kickoff humor? God, did I need a body shot. Instead, I was forced to start scanning the crowd in search of one person whom I would mate with and then eat, if I had to mate with and then eat anyone in the room.
However, not even my lighthearted fantasies could block Reichert’s freakish speech out. Unless I heard incorrectly, he next launched into a story about how his grandson was born a meth-baby, and that this child weighed two pounds and had burning bowel movements at birth. Meanwhile, people bravely continued eating their bacon and eggs.
Is this really the bathroom controls at Google HQ? Someone who has worked at that particular mothership should drop me a line.
THE CUBE NEEDS TWEAKING:
When workers began taking off the black plywood panels from the Fifth Avenue (NYC) store glass cube entrance last week, it seemed that construction was nearly finished. But a closer look at the activity shows the workers are swapping out the sophisticated titanium hardware between the glass panels, apparently after objections (Mr. Jobs) they were too conspicuous, and interrupted the esthetic of the piece. Last-minute artistic changes to store designs have been made before (mini-stores floors), at a cost of tens of thousands of dollars.
In defense of boredom:
Augustin de la Peña is one of America's foremost authorities on boredom. A Stanford-educated psychophysiologist working at a sleep-disorders center in South Texas, de la Peña has just finished a nearly 1,000-page treatise on the subject, complete with hundreds of references and five appendices. The book took him 20 years to write. The only problem is that he can't find a publisher. "I don't know if anybody'll be interested, because boredom is such a hard sell," he says.
These are tough times for boredom. Television stalks us everywhere, from SUV back seats to elevators. We squander hours online, plunging through Internet wormholes. (Recently, I found myself at the website of the Argentine Air Force and suddenly wondered, like an awakening drunk, how did I get here? In slow moments at work, I don't lean back and contemplate the Big Picture; I check in on Gawker.) We burn time trading moronic instant messages and emails; one friend regularly sends me links to stories about misbehaving chimps. And, now, the proliferation of handheld diversions--the BlackBerry, the video iPod--is dealing a death blow to the idle moment. Especially in Washington, it has become permissible to check one's BlackBerry mid-conversation. And, just between us, I may once have glanced at mine at a urinal.
US colonel offers Iraq an apology of sorts for devastation of Babylon:
In an act of at least partial contrition, an officer in charge of the US military occupation of Babylon in 2003 and 2004 has offered to make a formal apology for the destruction his troops wrought on the ancient site.
Colonel John Coleman, former chief of staff for the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force in Iraq, said yesterday that if the head of the Iraqi antiquities board wanted an apology, "if it makes him feel good, we can certainly give him one".
Just Check No:
In 1998, Rep. Mark Souder, R-Ind., an advocate of stringent drug laws, slipped into a House bill an amendment denying federal financial aid for college to anyone who had been convicted of either selling or possessing drugs. No congressional committee voted on the amendment. But it passed as part of the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act, first enacted in 1965 to create federal financial aid for college students.
If this law betters the lives of young people—Souder calls it a way to reduce youth drug use by reducing demand—then no state has done better than Souder's own Indiana. As of August 2005, nearly 9,000 Indianan students—one in 200—have been denied aid since the law passed. That's the highest proportion of students affected in any state by a wide margin. (Click here to see where your state ranks.) A week ago, when the Department of Education released preliminary data, I started calling Martin Green, Souder's spokesman, for a comment on Indiana's stellar showing. He has not returned my calls.
Popular Mechanics article from the 1940's on the making of Pinocchio.
The Hard Edge of a Fluff Machine - New York Times:
Beneath its gossamer skin of celebrity sightings and innuendo, Page Six occupies a significant coordinate in the business cosmology of New York City. Scores are kept and settled on the page, deals are floated and brands, both personal and corporate, are forged and melted down.
mcgriddlefanfic - Community Info:
Name: McGriddle Fan Fiction
About: This is a LiveJournal community for writers of McGriddle Fan Fiction, Breakfast Fan Fiction, and McGriddle Creative Writing. While our primary focus is on Fan Fic involving the McDonald's McGriddle, we extend membership to writers of any sort of breakfast food creative writing (i.e. McMuffins, Bagel Sandwiches, Pancakes, etc).
Salon.com Books | The happy hypocrite:
Then I picked up Flanagan's new book, "To Hell With All That: Loving and Loathing Our Inner Housewife," and I lost my equanimity. It's mostly a lightly reworked compilation of her New Yorker and Atlantic Monthly essays from the last few years, but dressed up with a more-in-sorrow-than-in-anger introduction blaming feminism for causing women "heartache," and a truly below-the-belt conclusion, on how surviving breast cancer confirmed Flanagan's conviction that traditional marriage and motherhood is best. I put the book aside for almost two months because even though I'm tough, I'm not tough enough to kick someone with cancer, and Flanagan deserves a kick for the dishonest and divisive gloss these new essays give the book, and her whole career. But I guess I learned something new about myself in this process: Apparently I am tough enough to kick someone with cancer, but only after feeling bad about it for a while.
AlterNet: The Down Side of Slashdot:
Yet slowly I began to feel the same way about their comments that I feel when a right-winger tells me that if I want to promote socialism, I should just move to another country. The problem is, I love my country. It fucking rocks. And I love Slashdot too. I don't want to run away. This is my home, and I want to stay here and fight for justice. I want women to get excited by all the cool articles on Slashdot and not get driven away by a community that values them for their bodies instead of their thoughts.
So I went back and began rereading the comments on Slashdot about my article. At least half of them were written by outraged readers who asked why my looks were relevant. A woman had posted about how this kind of treatment was exactly why so few women are in the tech industry. It wasn't a solid wall of sexism -- there was a debate going on. And for every sexist dick, there was at least one feminist dick talking back to him. Even the guy who'd written the post sent me an e-mail apologizing for having used the word gorgeous, explaining that his English was really bad and he hadn't intended to inspire the kinds of comments he had.
Andrew Sullivan | The Daily Dish: Good Money:
The retiring head of Exxon-Mobil has just been awarded a compensation package worth an estimated four-hundred million dollars. This is the same man who on Capitol Hill last fall testified that soaring gasoline prices were uncontrollable and that "We're all in this together." But not together in the same way, of course. This man and his lieutenants made lots of money off of expensive petroleum products. I lost some.
But I do begrudge him his mammoth windfall? No. First I'd have to be able to conceive of it. The wealth piling up in some individuals' hands these days passeth all understanding. They may as well be infinitely rich -- unless, that is, they're thinking of using their cash to assemble private air forces and navies. I think they should be required to, in fact.
The More You Know:
During a commercial break, the face of an Office cast member appeared on the screen. It was the actor/comedian B.J. Novak, and he looked very, very concerned. The reason why soon became apparent: This was one of NBC’s “The More You Know” public service announcements, which for the past 17 years have enlightened Americans on current events and societal dangers, from racism and drug addiction to eating disorders and internet safety. Tonight, B.J. Novak tackled a new threat ruining the lives of Americans everywhere:
“Never, ever, ever videotape yourself having sex,” said Novak, with deep and impressive gravity. “You can say you’ll tape over it, but you won’t, and the tape will fall into the wrong hands. So just don’t do it. Never, ever, ever tape yourself having sex.” Then, NBC’s signature musical flourish, and Novak’s serene voice: “The more you know…”
I have been in detention for the last two days, trying to get into the US from Canada. I have been rejected on the basis of apparently being a spreader/carrier of `obscene and communist political extremist` material (total bullshit) based on the following:
- T-shirts: Feindflug `Volk und Armee`, Combichrist `Enjoy the Abuse`, one depicting a Kolasjnikov gun and some rockabilly shirts by Monster & Felon.
- CD`s: Suicide Commando, Leaetherstrip `Suicide Bombers` and two Laibach CDs.
- Lyrics sheet of Grendel. Didn`t include the band name or titles, so they probably thought it was speech or something.
I was not even asked about these, but simply accused right there an then of having these on me to spread/sell. All of this was for my personal use, the t-shirts had all been used previously and the CD`s were only with the corresponding booklets, one original of each, in my CD folder. Also, I didn`t realise the cold war was still going on.. Can you say: Good night & good luck?
Minnesota Marine on terror watch list:
A Minnesota reservist who spent the past eight months in Iraq was told he couldn't board a plane to Minneapolis because his name appeared on a watch list as a possible terrorist.
In Jared’s Cottage - NYO - The Transom:
“When this thing dropped down on me,” said Jared Paul Stern, “it made it sound like the cops were on the way to lock me up. That’s scary! You know, so, that’s why I wasn’t saying anything at first. ’Cuz I didn’t know what the fuck was going on.”
There are no fewer than three bars on house’s first floor; his Macallan is 12-year. Now it was gin and tonic for him, and a Bombay gin martini with “the bad olives” for his wife, Ruth Gutman, a farm girl from Maine who is known to the gossip community by her husband’s pet name for her, Snoodles.
tina's blog: the towel and the feeling, or, NOW, we WAIT:
We had a sketch back when I was in the now-defunct Bald Faced Lie wherein I played a character called "The Puppy", who was the fur-coat, fur-hat wearing head of a bizarre little crime syndicate. At the end of the sketch, we're all gathered around a table where we've been on an important phone call. The Puppy hangs up the phone and says momentously, "Now...................................................we wait." And the lights dim painstakingly slowly, and the sketch ends.
The Light Above Cities
Sitting in darkness,
I see how the light of the city
fills the clouds, rosewater light
poured into the sky
like the single body we are. It is the sum
of a million lives; a man drinking beer
beneath a light bulb, a dancer spinning
in a fluorescent room, a girl reading a book
beneath a lamp.
Yet there are others-astronomers,
thieves, lovers-whose work is only done
in darkness. Sometimes
I don't want to show these poems
to anyone, sometimes
I want to remain hidden, deep in the coals
with the one who pulls the stars
through a telescope's glass, the one who listens
for the click of the lock, the one
who kisses softly a woman's eyes.
Escape from South Dakota:
And so there it went, the small, bloody thing. The thing that, if it had survived in my body (20 percent of pregnancies miscarry), would today be 21 years old, an adult. An adult born of a sad girl who did not know what she was doing, and didn't love (often almost hated) the man (men) she was doing it with. I know for certain if I'd mothered the kid, it would've been a walking disaster. And adoption—that brave and selfless choice that is part of "pro-choice"—probably wouldn't have presented itself as an option for me. I couldn't even get myself together to go to the cash machine—how would I have handled something as momentous as giving a kid up for adoption?
Seventeen months ago my daughter was born, and this time the baby was wanted, planned for, greeted like a kind of savior. It had taken my husband and me a long time to get pregnant, and there was no question that the baby would come into the world, if she made it. I knew I was pregnant this time when my appetite rebelled and I had to spit a hard-boiled egg into the sink. My throat started to close against certain foods, just as it had in the college cafeteria, and for nine unreal months I was possessed by her.
My name is PON. Since winter came, the sweater was worn.
Osaka Castle Park
Since he caught a cold last year, I made the sweater to him.
It was my socks without necessity. It is a recycling.:P
He is pleased very much in this sweater.
I show him a sweater. Then, he expects to go to take a walk!!
* yasuko * (heaven@air)
After 30 Years, B&O Espresso May be Forced to Close:
An ominous notice has gone up at B&O Espresso on Olive Way: The building the B&O is in may be torn down to make way for yet more condos. “It’s kind of up in the air, and it won’t be for a while,” Katharine, a manager, told me when I called B&O. “The city put up a sign, and it looks like the soonest it would happen would be a year and a half from now.”
Tonight I wonder where the man is
who used to stand just inside the doors
of the Lexington Avenue entrance to Grand Central Station.
The full moon is rising. Around the earth, meteors move
through space. Every day for over a year
I walked by him early in the morning
and at the end of the day he still
stood in the same position, arms down
his sides, looking straight ahead
at thousands of people walking
without colliding in all directions at once,
everybody trying to get to a different place.
I Have An iPod–In My Mind | The Onion:
You say those iPods have customizable playlists that allow you to line up songs of your choosing? Primitive! I can put together a playlist, say "Best-Ever Heavy Metal Anthems," while I'm sitting in traffic. My mind is light-years beyond that, though. Does your iPod have the "That Reminds Me Of Another Great Song" feature? Well, my mind does!
Does your iPod have a powerful feature that can play back the great songs of summer 1993, as they sounded coming out of Mike Tollefson's boombox in the back of the school bus? Of course not. That particular playlist is in my brain, which your pitiful iPod will never be able to autosync with.
But wait, you say that my iPod isn't wrapped up in a pretty little white case? Oh, I guess you haven't heard of a pretty little white case I like to call my skull.
One particularly Japanese trend is known as kawaii, or cute. Both Brian McVeigh and Donald Richie write about the prevalence of cuteness in Japanese culture, saying that “cuteness is not just a fad in the fashion cycle of Japanese pop culture; it is more of a ‘standard’ aesthetic of everyday life” (McVeigh 135) and that “one cannot, in Japan, escape from the cartoon, the comic-book atmosphere, the cute” (Richie 53). Citing a Dr. Takasu (author of The Magnetism of the Heart—Becoming a Cute Woman: Mesmer Explains the 5 Rules for Becoming a Good Woman), McVeigh concludes that there are three major characteristics of cuteness: 1) having features of an infant; 2) arousing a protective instinct in others; and 3) having the desire to be liked (139). McVeigh also provides lists of associations Japanese people have with cuteness, both conceptual (“powerlessness, controllable, controlled, weakness, femininity, cheerfulness and youthfulness”) and concrete (“females, bright colors [especially pink], infants, children, small size and toys”) (142).
Free at last—I am wrecked. Here is the final installment—
Great Men of Genius Debriefing #4: L. Ron Hubbard:
It must be strange and a little scary knowing that a percentage of your audience is there simply to witness what they consider to be a direct attack on their belief system, particularly when that belief system is not known for tolerating dissent. It felt a little tense from where I was sitting; I can’t imagine how it felt under the lights.
The review of Tesla is up!
Great Men of Genius Debriefing #3: Nikola Tesla
You get the feeling that Daisey is coming to new conclusions and realizations all the time, right there on stage—that his delving into the minds of these men is never complete, and that it’s deepening before your eyes. (Though Daisey claims he’s no longer a geek, he has a picture of a MacBook Pro booting Windows XP on his website, and if he’s in the 0.64% of the population who thinks that’s in any way interesting or noteworthy, he’s definitely a geek, but in a good way.)
Hah! I'm totally busted.
Tonight ends the series with L. Ron Hubbard—I'm offline the rest of the day, but come on down this evening to see the show.
PAGING MR. LOVECRAFT:
BREITBART.COM - Ancient Book May Be Covered in Human Skin:
A 300-year-old book that appears to be bound in human skin has been found in northern England, police said Saturday.
The macabre discovery was made on a central street in Leeds, and officers said the ledger may have been dumped following a burglary.
Tonight is the 3rd of 4 monologues, back to back to back to back. I am starting to feel fatigued, I will admit, but this is the hump—and with Nikola Tesla on the schedule, I can't afford to back down now.
Wish me luck--below is my new "serenity backdrop" that I'm using to gather enough chi for the show. I hope it works.
There are reviews for the first evening of GREAT MEN OF GENIUS at the Seattle PI and Seattle Times sites:
"Daisey comes off as a kindred comic cousin to the late Saturday Night Live actor Chris Farley or maybe the precocious brother to social commentator/filmmaker Michael Moore. Each performance literally has a life of its own, as Daisey works without a script, using only a few pages of notes on yellow legal pad pages, and a towel always close at hand to wipe the sweat from his animated face."
"An interestingly unpredictable and uneasy moosh of homage and parody...a kind of dual Rorschach test, in which one man identifies his own demons and ideals in the ink-blot of another's life story."
And today's update in the SLOG is up, a review of night two, with both my comments and an irreverent review:
Great Men of Genius Debriefing #2: P.T. Barnum
The best use of swearing tonight: “Are you there God? It’s me, Judy Blume, spanking your ass,” followed closely by, “… and then her pussy says, ‘Hello, I love you.’”
After tonight's monologue, a few people were wondering about Julie Atlas Muz--here's her website, and below are a couple of pictures from her productions.
Great piece on KUOW, Seattle's NPR station, about GREAT MEN OF GENIUS--specifically on L. Ron Hubbard, our last (and possibly craziest) genius. Give it a listen here, and see the show itself Sunday night.
I'm offline the rest of the day--P.T. Barnum is tonight, and I need to get all my freak cataloguing and hoax perpetuating ready to go...
The Stranger, Seattle's kickass alternative weekly, is posting daily debriefings on each show in the GREAT MEN OF GENIUS series. The first, detailing last night's show about Brecht, is up now—it includes my commentary, and a short review from a Stranger writer who has signed up to see all four. Check it out.
Boing Boing: Smithsonian becomes Showtime's exclusive first-refusal archive:
The Smithsonian has sold exclusive first-refusal rights to its enormous film archive (including tons of public-domain material) to Showtime, a commercial network. This means that anyone who wants to use Smithsonian footage in a documentary will have to take a back seat to Showtime's execs.
What's more, if the US signs the evil WIPO "Broadcast Treaty," it means that Showtime will get a new, 50-year copyright over the public domain material they air as part of this deal, so doc-makers won't even be able to piece together works from the crumbs that Showtime chooses to air.
Opening Day! One of the biggest in my life.
Blogging will be very light hereabouts, as I am birthing four monologues in four days, starting this evening. if you're in Seattle, come on down and see it happen at the Capitol Hill Arts Center: details are in the sidebar.
In press news there's a very nice shout-out in the Stranger's Suggests (see Sunday's listing) and a great writeup on the Stranger's blog, where the fact that I do not pretend to be any of these geniuses is lauded.
How I Work: Bill Gates - Apr. 4, 2006:
If you look at this office, there isn't much paper in it. On my desk I have three screens, synchronized to form a single desktop. I can drag items from one screen to the next. Once you have that large display area, you'll never go back, because it has a direct impact on productivity.
The screen on the left has my list of e-mails. On the center screen is usually the specific e-mail I'm reading and responding to. And my browser is on the right-hand screen. This setup gives me the ability to glance and see what new has come in while I'm working on something, and to bring up a link that's related to an e-mail and look at it while the e-mail is still in front of me.
Ventura teacher's hand severed when paperweight explodes:
Part of a teacher's hand was blown off when a 40 mm round the instructor used as a paperweight on his desk exploded in his classroom.
Part of Colla's right hand was severed and he suffered severe burns and minor shrapnel wounds to his forearms and torso, fire Capt. Tom Weinell said. No one else was injured.
Colla found the 40 mm round while hunting years ago, Huston said. He used it as a paperweight and "obviously he didn't think the round was live," Huston said.
Piece from the Seattle Weekly on GREAT MEN OF GENIUS, which opens tomorrow--read it here.