Say hello to my new Niece!
Monday, December 31, 2001
Thursday, December 27, 2001
Sunday, December 23, 2001
Hi. me's been quiet for a while. Resting up after the big Sessions thing. Getting holi-daze-ical. Now, as I'll post in a second, there's some big news from my family.
The PARTY was a huge howling neato success. All of the performers were incredible. We raised some cash, and we still have prize packs available on the site so we can raise more money and YOU can get art from past Sessions artists for a great prize. Plus one of our cool tshirts! Here's the front! I'll put an image of the back up pretty soon. But it incorporates all of our past artists!
Tuesday, December 11, 2001
Friday, December 07, 2001
Thursday, December 06, 2001
The comics page has bite.
I'm recommending this to everyone this week, keep an eye on Doonesbury which, as always, is a voice of dissent in the face of political hypocrisy. And checkout Boondocks which has been around for four years (not 30 like Trudeau's strip) and is also making great use of our guaranteed right to ask impolite questions. In a time when those rights are sometimes threatened (hint: do a FIND on "watch what they say", this happens to be the top result on Google for that search--which means that a lot of other people are linking to it using that phrase) by the mindset, policies & actions of the current administration. I salute the courage & backbone of both Aaron McGruder and Gary Trudeau in the face of the backlash for people speaking their minds.
European countries are concerned about the military tribunal issue, perhaps more than the average US citizen. They may not extradite accussed terrorists if there is no guarantee of them getting a non-secret trial (and that could be the strongest challenge that this policy will get). But will they refuse when the request actually comes?
Wednesday, December 05, 2001
I mean one that is REALLY full of dust/never been cleaned/bunnies in every nook. Something cathartic, rewarding, even noble about completing the task. Especially when the compressed air runs out and you start doing it all with yer own lungs.
Or maybe that's the headrush talking.
Sunday, December 02, 2001
I can't help but detect a racist aspect in that mindset (it also reminds me of the rationalizations of Scientific Creationism and its adaptive descendant Intelligent Design *shudder* ), racism of the type which is historically inherited and easier to excuse away, but that makes it no easier to bear, and it is the infrastructure on which contemporary cruelty can be justified. You can get logic to take you anywhere you want, if you know how to bend the information at the top. I think I'm ranting. But it's worth it to occasionally mention out loud that racism exists, not just in a few that are dedicated to that cause, but in subtle ways like this, which are propagated in the educational system and strong first impressions on those who are or aren't of African descent. I guess I should sum this up with "we're all a family" or something; we're all the same animal at least. People with darker skins just seem to have gotten smarter first.
Saturday, December 01, 2001
I don't spend much time sports fanning these days--though in my youth I was rabid & in particular in regards to stats for all the major sports, calculating the changes in Slugging Percentage due to late night games that the editors of the paper hadn't had time to add to the leaders board. But this article in the Washington Post is a fascinating read. It's subject is a pulp-fiction worthy tale: the greatest basketball player of all time returns from his second retirement to lead & inspire a young team. Only it hasn't been working out storybook, as this article details. And the details are indeed intimate, which is just the kind that really appeal in a workstyles of the Rich & Famous motif like this which inspires borderline-tabloid rubber-necking interest even from reformed sports fans like me. On-court & locker room conversations pepper it as does insightful analysis of what is making Michael tick. The pulp sports story would assume that with some of the best instincts & experience in the game's history, with accomplishments that inspire awe in teammates & foes alike, not to mention resources on an order to give Steve Austin trainer-envy, the mere limits of the flesh & mortality oughtn't impede the spirit of a champion from rising to the pinnacle yet again. The reality is more human.
Friday, November 30, 2001
Today's the day of Attaboy's show!! It's going to be great!!!
Wednesday, November 28, 2001
just back from my Tuesday night gig at the Odeon. Had a Blast! It's been way too long since I DJ'd. The Odeon is the perfect place for a punk-heavy set--Husker Du, Nirvana, Sonic Youth, Pixies (3 tracks, total), Bad Religion, The Fall, Wire, Butthole Surfers, Flipper, X-ray Spex, the Replacements, Bow-wow-wow, The Heartbreakers, Mudhoney, Babes in Toyland, Jesus Lizard, Big Black, and my own hometown heros (from Richmond, VA!) Kepone & More Fire for Burning People were played. But, being the college radiohead that I am, there was a much broader setlist, which included Built to Spill, Prince Far-I, Panacea, Kid 606, Witchman, Amon Tobin, Handsome Boy Modeling School, The Ventures, Kool Keith & DJ Spooky, Low, I am Spoonbender, Bad Livers and a guy from Finland (named Paska) doing an acapella version of "Ace of Spades" by Motorhead. I call that fucking eclectic. With a fucking hat on, to boot! Feedback was good, but then feedback is ALWAYS good!
Monday, November 26, 2001
Hey, cool! The online Illustrated Book of Sexual Records Sexual Superlatives from all around the World. Over 450 entries... complete free of charge! Copyrighted 1974, 1982, 1997.
What a good idea. Now I know about the first erotic coins and
the most controversial U.S. brassiere ad!
Sunday, November 25, 2001
It's nice to continually discover weird stuff I hadn't heard about yet.
IN 1964, ten of the tape-recorded dreams of Dion McGregor were pressed into a record album and released by Decca Records, then one of the largest music companies in the world. The album, aptly entitled The Dream World Of Dion McGregor (He Talks In His Sleep), is a masterpiece of inadvertent surrealism.
wow. dig these film bits!
Two large corporations in the future world are fighting to get control over the best minds in the world. An unsettling and surrealistic venture into cyber space (courtesy of William Gibson’s short story), Ferrara’s film is having its theatrical premiere! Starring Christopher Walken, Willem Dafoe, Asia Argento, Annabella Sciorra,
John Lurie. Directed by Abel Ferrara. In Color. 35mm. 92 mins. 1998. Tues at 8:00; Wed at 4:00, 8:00.
Tuesday night me and DJ Univac will mix it up @ The Odeon. On tap will be everything from punk to darkest dub to ninjatunage--expect a wildride mix that will keep you guessing and walking up asking: what was that last song?
Friday night ATTABOY (w/ some help from me & Tom and many others) launches
the new book I Hate Cartoons! also @ The Odeon
Both nights start at 9pm. at the Odeon.
If you wanted to study up aforehand (or aft, if you read this later) my DJ sets'll probably include more than two tunes from each of the following labels: SST, Mille Plateaux, WordSound, NinjaTune, ThrillJockey, Bubblecore, Extreme.
In other news, plans are coming together for next month's FISTFUL OF TENTACLES party/benefit/performance for the Tentacle Sessions. It's on December 16th & it's going to be great--cut the date out of your calendar, blow it up 100x at kinkos and paste it on your front door. Or something like that.
Thursday, November 22, 2001
Are you aware of the Penal Codes in this fundamentalist Islamic regime? What I mean to say is, them Talibanese banned the str-angest things. No kite selling. No chess.
No "any equipment that produces the joy of music".
I wonder how many violations my house would come under, lessee, at least:
- woman leaves home with her face unveiled (2 counts--and neither of them have husbands to be punished for it!)
- Chess (lots of counts: 2 sets and 3 or 4 books)
- Computer (uh, SEVEN at the moment, though 2 are just being housed briefly, not that they would take that as an excuse)
- VCR (there are 2 here, I'm not sure how they charge people for cinematography if I have stuff on video and it has bad cinematography would that still count? They'd probably frame me, just to make an example.)
- firecrackers and statue (my roommate Angela used to make sculptures that she burned with firecrackers inside them...I wonder if that counts, and I wonder if the neighbors would squeal?)
- alcohol (...guilty...)
- equipment that produces the joy of music (3 stereo type things plus 2 portables plus...could I get double jeopardy for playing music from my computer(s)? At least they didn't ban mp3s!)
- anything that propagates sex and is full of music (well, I'm off the hook here, I haven't had a Barry White or Sade album in years)
- wine (yup.)
- nail polish (I don't have an exact count on it yet, but I'll get the veil-less wonder on it right away--unless there's a ban on tallying! ;-) whoops! I'm sure emoticons wouldn't be allowed.)
- pictures (um. well, yeh. you mean photos? or bad thrift store art that is in its own way good? oh, and I've got one of bin Laden's mom in a compromising position here somewhere...is that bad? oh. You wanna see it first?)
- tapes (we got duct, masking, scotch, 8-track, cassette, um, blue duct [that's got another name don't it?] reel-to-reel & splicing, and, oh yeh, the double-sided kind. Ooooooh! RACEY!)
- sewing catalogs (somewhere, sure, I guess)
The ministry's headquarters were a two-story house with a small, dark jail out front and another in the basement. A second-floor room contains a pile of smashed televisions, and in the room next door, a dressing table taken because the owner had pasted pictures of female Indian singers on the mirror.
This sounds like the first exhibit for a new AfghanMOMA, doesn't it? Maybe we'll find out the whole thing was a conceptual art piece.
Okay, I'm going to start mashing potatoes now.
Wednesday, November 21, 2001
[As many of you know 6rady designed Cocktail's
webpages back when the Web was run by steam & coca cola].
Delicious! Deadly! Hungover! Unemployed! Bathrobe! mikl!
that's all, just wanted to say "hi".
Tuesday, November 20, 2001
Monday, November 19, 2001
Friday November 30th at the Odeon is the big debut of I Hate Cartoons which features the arty works of Attaboy, Ben Burke, Eric Talbot, Gobler Toys, Mark Martin, Aaron Tompkins, Chris Hicks and Dave Cooper (Fantagraphics!).
Link to this
I'm lending Attaboy a hand putting together an unforgettable event to celebrate an incredible collection of visualgrafffikal thingamahbobs. Just a little advanced warning.
Sunday, November 18, 2001
Do we need another hero? The Tick is back from back. All told this is Tick's third incarnation
for fans, like me, who started with the original comic book. That's if you don't count the figures of ACTION.
In related newz, this week a new Justice League of America series debuts on the Cartoon Network. Though the reviews, at least the ones form self-appointed amateur know-it-alls which are the only ones I trust, are not great. Anyway, like the new tick it's just another development to mock my cable-less-ness, though I'm resolute in my narrow-catching. Besides usually I can get a taste from RealVideo (like the new AbFab series, for instance). However, RealMedia's corporate style bugs me and I'd rather not patronize them. Note to self to rant on that soon. grrrr.
Meanwhile from related browsing I get this tidbit:
"Forest Whitaker is in talks to direct the live-action pic FAT ALBERT, based on Bill Cosby's popular animated series."
that sounds very nice.
Friday, November 16, 2001
For those who perhaps (like me, I'll admit it, dammit!) first
encountered Doonesbury as a kid
(the strip has been around for 30 years now!) when the thought of
Henry Kissinger and humor on the same page seemed an uphill buzzkill
(or for some of you maybe it was James Watt...Dan Quayle?), but haven't
visited the land of Trudeau with an adult mindset, or if you know the
WonderOfWhichISpeak but haven't checked in on the world of Michael & Zonker in a while, I strongly suggest you check out Doonesbury.com ASAP. And in particular note how
he has handled our world post 911. Those comics start
here and its worth reading every single one of them and then waiting
with breath that is baited for midnight when the new one is posted.
From Ground Zero to Mazar-E Sharif, Gary Trudeau takes no
prisoners and nails all hypocrisies, personal and political, with a
multi-colored dry spotlight. Or something. So glad he's around.
Also this one gets special mention as a nice, solid shrub-bash.
So, there's a lot of flash stuff out there now, you know? Enuf that if you don't look at it for a while it just keeps on piling up until one evening you wind up fallling into a vat of it. Tonight I did that. So whenever you feel like losing an hour (on the short side), get a comfortable chair, close all your other programs (you'll need the cpu) and, finally, have sound ON, but start the volume out low, k? You've been warned. On to the cool shit...
Vector lounge's Web Jam is apparently a gathering of topnotchrightnow Flash work. Thanks. The work from the #4 show in Amsterdam is what I bumped into and launched me to all the links below. There's a lot more to explore from the first 3.
flammable jam are responsible for Slap the Monkey on Vector Lounge, and also this funly dumb kung fu game (on the bbc site, so hopefully they got paid); they are based in Scotland. Apparently there's some connection with h69.net, another site with a bunch of Flash, which is mostly just okay and sometimes downright annoying (from the 6 or so I checked out).
OTOH, this puppety skeleton thing by Wireframe Studio is impressive and fun--much better than their homepage which is still under construction, tho it has some cool tools, but its minimal content-wise). But ShapeSquad and most especially Post Panic, who are both outta the Netherlands, really kick my ass.
Another thing that definitely gets my attention on several of these sites/pieces is the music--it actually SOUNDS good! It's not like the first wav of embedded sound on webpages (which can still be found looping endlessly cliche and LOUD on Geocities homepages, etc). Here are songs you've never heard, usually cool hiphop or 'lectronic basic recipies, which are looped well and catchy. I also thank the makers of Flash for getting us back to mousing around--Flash can either be viewed passively or interacted with or frequently in these examples both. WIll you ever find everything that's there? Probably not. Does that make sense for a designer to do when they are trying to sell their services? It's a moot point if the overall effect is so impressive. Sure, it's not great information architecture--but if there's enuf "information" then no one will think there's a problem; that is it's about experience, too. I don't know, it's late, and I'm just waxing on. But I guess what I'm saying is that I like the experience of being thrown into something and having to swim my way out--or thrash about to find my entertainment dinner. Shape my own experience, and foul up joyously my own perceptions. I like forks-in-toasters, at least sometimes. On that clank, g'nite! mikl.
Wednesday, November 14, 2001
Note that True Meaning of Life: Meditation Chamber (which I linked to a few posts, and several months, earlier) and the startling similar Forum 2000 both now only have their archives (temporarily in TML's case?) available. So where can you turn for a live dose of this particular flavor of time wastage? There's always The Conversatron, though not everyone likes it.
Did you know that some people still watch TV?
Just updated the TENTACLE SESSIONS homepage in advance of this Sunday's show. The intervening month has been tumultuous: Cafe Du Nord discontinued the series (on very short notice) and the previously scheduled guest, the esteemed Paul Mavrides, needed to postpone his Tentacle appearnance 'til next spring.
But with grace, coolness, and not-just-a-little aplomb, co-Producer Steven Black pulled a Tentacle out of his hat. Tentacle PORN that is. As it turns out "tentacle porn" is an actual anime sub-genre. In particular it is the hardcore-est of anime porn--of monsters, schoolgirls and, well, a mess. Not fer everybody, but this is a living sub-cultural phenom--and if yer titilated, please come out to the Sessions current shelter from the storm, SPANGANGA (3376 19th Street 'tween Mission & Capp).
Spanganga is the new space run by Sean Kelly of Please Leave the Bronx comedy troupe; neither the space nor the troupe seems to have a webpage currently. So I can only embolden them. Which is ANNOYING (Sean, I know you're reading this!). But here's a mention (and a photo of Sean in a tux) from an old Guardian article.
More later, I'm still fine-tuning the Sessions page.
[Note to all fellow web-monkeyers out there:
Remember the basics, like the W3C's HTML Validator. Gawd. It's like going to the dentist for the first time in years--lookit all that crap in there! Fortunately, it's just a webpage tsk-ing at me, not a medical professional with a sharp instrument.]
Tuesday, November 13, 2001
Monday, November 12, 2001
Well, Danielle and I went to France for a month. Now we're back and I'm looking for a job.
We have handed off production duties of the Tentacle Sessions to good and very capable
friends--so the series continues, but we are only tangentially involved.
I have a number of artistic projects in mind, some of which are making it to the drawing board
about now. And communication has lagged at this venue because I've started an email announcement
list on Topica which is where I've been shouting about cool stuff I am doing or know about. Here is where you
can subscribe to that if you'd like.
Saturday, November 10, 2001
Tuesday, August 28, 2001
Wednesday, March 14, 2001
Saturday, March 03, 2001
Monday, February 26, 2001
Wednesday, February 21, 2001
Maybe I have a dark sense of humor, okay, probably. I have always liked comics, but after going to an independent comics convention, I realized that I don't rival the true comic geeks of the world.
But I like what I like, at least. And I like
Steven he's a little boy with a strangely two-pointed hat, a gun, and a taste for beer. Drawn by a guy named Doug Allen since the late 70's, Steven books are distributed by Fantagraphics and the strip is featured in scads of independent papers across the country. If the guy who writes Red Meat has never read Steven then I'm a drunk cactus.
Tuesday, February 20, 2001
Saturday, February 17, 2001
Not to make this whole site referential to Taylor, but I have to simply link to his summary and pointers to all your base are belong to us phenomenon which is (as Billy Crystal once said of midget wrestling) "with all due respect, the greatest thing in the world". He explains it better, although what the "31137 crowd" is I guess I'm just not hep enuf to know. Watch the original and then make sure to check out the techno remix link. The animation is actually from a Sega video game
This morning, killing time that can ill-afford to be killed, I ended up doing a bunch of surfing on the track & trails of MTV's Buzz (from the early 90's). Interesting that. It was a huge influence on Taylor, Shvatz & I in college. Rapid fire tele-collage-vision with a solid conceptual basis (a one-word theme per 30min. episode, a global view, statistics and interviews, and a shaky handheld camera). The research yields interesting facts, and a few parallels n' stuff. Anyway, here's the report, then I have to get to Tentacle work:
First off, Buzz is not listed on imdb.com, even though director Mark Pellington seems to now be a successful video/movie director. Further linkage reveals he graduated from UVA the year that I graduated from high school (whatever that means, but it was interesting to learn). His new film sounds like a sci-fi thriller, sounds very on the X-files vibe in fact.
There's an interview with Pellington where he talks about making his second film Arlington Road now that I understand more what narrative filmmaking is about..., hm, it's interesting, cuz Buzz was a non-narrative work. It must be interesting to work your way back into more traditional forms. I guess I do that a bit now when I'm writing story type stuff, having gone through a more kinda language-poetry aware (I won't say influenced, though in a general sense that's true) phase.
One more connection of a different sort, both of his films debuted at Sundance film festival, which Taylor & Anna went to this year. Once again it impresses me, that fact that we're walking the same ground we were worshipping from afar less than 10 years ago. Which is cool, and something I've given a fair amount thought to recently. And will be the subject of post here a few days hence....
Friday, February 16, 2001
I'm tired. I've had sickness all week. 3 days out of work. Things are dizzy, busy and sorta sad/frustrating right now. Didn't look at world news today until about 9:30 when I learned about the bombings of Iraq. I knew Snippy was going to do that. I really don't like that guy.
I'm thirty right now. How many of you, who are within 5-10 years of my age, remember growing up with the assumption that the world would end by a nuclear blast in out lifetime? Raise your hands. [Looks like about... 64% (+or - 8%) about what I figured.] Cold wars bite my shiny metal ass. They aren't sexy or heroic, or funny or romantic or even tragic, they're just stupid. What is it good for?
The legacy of republican presidents in the last couple decades (and their faithful vices) speaks for itself, as, unfortunately, does George W. Bush. And speaks for all of us in fact to world leaders and other people with weapons. I don't trust this guy to talk to telemarketers, let alone world leaders. Don't get me wrong, Clinton definitely is a dicey character in some regards, but the fact is that at least some of the time he is conniving on our behalf. Bush is working exclusively for who put shoved him into office--less than the majority but have the lion's share of the wealth. The ones who spell USA with a capital $.
Maybe he's not the only one who's jumping the gun. Maybe it's not that bad. But it sure smells like it to me.
In brighter news, The Tentacle Sessions series which I co-produce will celebrate its two year anniversary (and the start of our 3rd year) on Sunday. The guest is the incredible Hal Robins, who is a gifted cartoonists, brilliant historian of popular culture and unpopular oddities, and one of the founders of the Church of the SubGenius. I've been reviewing a lot of SubGenius stuff recently, and you know it makes you wonder. It really does.
congrats to taylor, anna, and company for theiraward-nominated [look under high bandwidth] site. When we were growing up (i.e. were in college) our (future) alma mater was abuzz and agog about having Phoef Sutton as an alum; he was impressive (if not famous) for writing and producing a popular tv show. I wonder when taylor's gonna go lecture about becoming a success in the new media world? <requisite ironical jab> Of course, nowadays, he wouldn't be speaking to the English & Theater departments about the Web, he'd be talking to the Business Majors.</requisite ironical jab>
Either way, we've come a long way from reading Mondo and watching Buzz. I think we're actually doing that stuff now. wheeeeeee!!
Thursday, February 15, 2001
not bad for the first night. played with the format a bit, added the links on the left,
played with colors, but I'm not set on 'em yet. It is coming along though. very nice. I like this!
I've decided that no one will see this for a little while. I need to fool around with the design template some.
This is a great opportunity, because usually I'm not design-y. I don't know where to start. But with blogger
I've got a solid little design to start with that I can slowly rip-apart from the inside(!). I love that.
Normally I just get frozen trying to decide what font to make it. Not because I'm incredibly picky about fonts
but because I don't know them well. Between not knowing what I like in a font (we can't all be 6rady) and not
knowing definitively what fonts are standard on people's machines, I just get stymied and don't do anything creative.
But blogger's template gave me a font to start with and I can just proceed from there and go back and change
it when I'm moved to. And I'm even using style sheets--woohoo! Something else I never get around to
fooling with--I am finding that it is much easier to edit existing style sheets than to write them in the first place.
Anyway, I'll need to read up on the wacky things.
this is going to be fun.
But, like I said, no one will see it for a while, until I'm comfortable with the design and there are a dozen or so
posts up. I mean, it's kinda like when you buy a cd or dvd player, but you only have 1 or 2 discs. You'd be here
every few minutes waiting to see if I had posted anything new. Okay, maybe you wouldn't be. But I would!
Lemme say that the major examples of bloggy goodness in my life are Captain Cursor and Morford who really need to meet up at some point in person. Other notables are da and nadav. They cool. All them. And then there's Julie who was a the proto-blogger. Read them, too.
Well. I did it. 2001, the year I got a cell phone is now also the year I gotta blog.
Now I can talk to you anywhere, anytime. If only you will listen. Whoever you are.
hello whirld, my name's mikl-em.