Wednesday, July 31, 2002

The Guardian's Best of the Bay issue is now out (and you gotta wonder with all the web designers out of work, why their online version sucks rocksalt). As usual I can happily point at a few friends in the pages Hal Robins, The Seemen, and ATA. Other longtime favorites get recognition like Cafe Abir and Naked Eye video. And happily there is much that is news to me like Lord of Balls Lounge, because this is such an incredible city.

The homegrown wonder that is Craigslist gets mentioned amongst both the Reader's & Editor's picks. And though Craig Newmark's creation (now much bigger than he alone--with a staff of 14) has much to offer to every citizen of this geeky city--online listings to help the job hunt, apartment hunt, love hunt, or just selling stuff--today I wandered down the left-hand column of the homepage and clicked to read the last couple personal dispatches from the man who made the list.

One regards a California financial privacy law that's worth voicing and voting for. The other pertains to a lawsuit that Craig & other users of ReplayTV in conjunction with the EFF have filed against the tv networks and major studios to protect their (i.e. OUR) rights to use "time-shifting" and "space-shifting" technology. Go Craig!

Wednesday, July 24, 2002

More live music:

Caroliner play live August 8th at GAMH (also appearing is KROB of Odeon fame). If you think you love dada then Caroliner will bite you. Here's some more evidence.

Oh, and Dread Zeppelin are playing out again, too. I knew you'd want to know.

Never mind the Pistols, Camper Van Beethoven is having a reunion tour--3 shows just finished in NYC, and an upcoming one two in SF & one in LA! They also just released their remake of Fleetwood Mac's TUSK (extra credit for the jackalope album cover).

Other die-hard Camper Fan Trivia: Victor Krummenacher is now Art Director (and sometimes writes and interviews) for the SFBayGuardian; early Camper member Chris Molla now makes music for children; and David Immergl├╝ck (ex-Monks of Doom) now plays with Counting Crows!?

Jonathan Segel & Victor's record label has news and releases by related projects [and a quote from's Lore Sjoberg!]. I must highly recommend VK's Out in the Heat for great songwriting and beautiful dusty arrangements featuring pedal steel, mandolin, and accordion. Written during a "dark phase" with the eloquence which that can entail.

I am disappointed because I was hoping to link to an interview with Johnny Rotten that I'd read (maybe in BAM) where when asked what he had to offer an 18-year old Green Day fan he answered:

A big willy.

but the interview is unfindable.

Two cool shows on comics on now in San Francisco.

mikl's freshly coined phrases department:

when the Half-and-half goes whole

Monday, July 22, 2002

reviews are in on Phil Donahue's return. And, from the same column, did you know that Enron & the NYTimes had a financial relationship?
there's a new giant squid in town. if you live in Australia, at least.

Last night the Women of SRL put on a great show in Tentacle Session #35. It was an inspiring night of true tales of women who weld (amongst many other talents). There were 7 SRL members on the panel, which was moderated by Maribeth Back. From these 7 women we got to see the diversity of the people (male and female) who volunteer with Survival Research Labs, the self-assuredness that they have gained from the experience (not that they were bereft of it to start), and their general fondness for fire & explosions.

There were stories of first shows seen and worked on, a look at how things get done in the SRL shop, culture clashes in Japan (where it's apparently a taboo for women to fix things), and a bit about what happens when things go wrong. There was a demonstration by The SRL Science Department on turning household products into a sloppy-glop called GAK; another by Karen on telerobotics (tales of VRML and the SRL Protocol). And finally a review of "special effects" SRL-style ('why would you want to blow shit up?'). We also saw footage of SRL's LA performance two weeks ago. There was artwork up from several SRL women.

For the whole list of women on the panel and the complete list of ladies who've worked with SRL over the years, well you know where to look.

Sunday, July 21, 2002

At last. makes it easy for me to know (and tell others) that my music is best.
Also in Paris, the Socialist Mayor plays social engineer: creating low rent housing in the midst of the posh.
Ah. The beaches of Paris. Wait. The beaches of Paris!?

Saturday, July 20, 2002

an update:

The 100+ Chinese carnivorous fish that can walk for short distances on their fins found in a Maryland pond have been given a death sentence. No sign of an appeal, but neither details on when or how the extermination will be done. Here's the latest from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. Rest assured, we (who am I kidding? It's just I) will keep close tabs on this story and link like mad if anything develops.

How far reaching is this issue? They're worried about it in Wisconsin. An early report on the CBS News site includes a video (its before they realized there were so many); I like the part where they are stapling up Wanted posters. In more idiosyncratic coverage The Washington Times manages to bleed patriotism from a Chinese fish with this passionate and whining editorial about Good Old Amurican fishes whooping up on the "oriental character" and making it "wish it stayed in Asia".

I'm sorry, but I just love the hell out of this story. One delightful aspect is that the fish has a "primitive lung", which I have learned from the Mice Models of Human Cancers Consortium arises from the foregutl, if it's anything like human lung development (and who ultimately cares if it is, it's enough for me just to encounter the word foregut for the first time). Somehow it's fitting to me to discover this in such close proximity to things dada.

Friday, July 19, 2002

Luddite-line: The U.S. Senate

In 1997 Mike Enzi asked if he could bring his laptop to work in the US Senate. They said no. To be more precise, according to USA TODAY:

The Rules Committee deliberated over six months, held three hearings and delivered a 47-page report. The judgment: no laptops on the Senate floor.

Last month Enzi asked again. The Committee on Rules and Administration said they'd take it up at the next meeting, though they don't have a meeting planned. The chairman of the committee is Chris Dodd and the Ranking Member [sic] is Mitch McConnell.

Note the story cited above is primarily about another technidiot rule of the Senate, which is that a Senator's official website cannot be updated within 60 days of primary and general elections.

Meanwhile, the Senate just started it's transition from cc:Mail to a Microsoft email system. Fortunately they have policies in order, so that their cutting edge technologies won't be abused: "[Gopher] is only be used for official purposes". *phew*! :-)

Following up on this I took a look at the House's site to try and discern where they stood on laptops on the floor (or didn't. you know what I mean!). The House also doesn't allow them on the floor, but according to this April 2001 report they seem much more tech-savvy (mentioning a planned Blackberry 'pilot project/test', for instance). Another document on the House site (which is undated and frighteningly unattributed) mentions that 35 of the State legislatures DO currently allow laptops in their "Chambers". But [see page 24] the document also points out some valid differences between the States and the US Congress (like the USC's lack of assigned seating[!]). Okay, enough of this. !!!!!!!

stocks hit their lowest mark in almost 4 years :-(
[the day of one-line entries continues]

The International Spy Museum just opened in DC.

It's the Art for Drugs scandals that really steam my pork bun!

Thursday, July 18, 2002

The Senate gave its anti-Ecstacy bill the acronym R.A.V.E.. Are they H.I.P. or what? Probably not. I bet they were thinking of F.I.S.T. or C.H.U.D. when they did it. Fortunately, the A.C.L.U. is getting involved: "[the ACLU attorney] argues that while there is no constitutional right to smoke crack, there is, in fact, a right to dance. Music and dance are protected forms of free expression, he said. By extending the crack house law to dance parties, the RAVE Act would discourage promoters from sponsoring this kind of art, he said."

(quoted from the Washington Post article)

Here's the petition to which the article refers. The Electronic Music Defense and Education Foundation ("EM:DEF") is trying to defend "innocent professionals in the electronic dance music business" victimized by The War on Club Drugs--here is their page opposing the Senate bill. The ACLU steps in again to oppose a California state bill, and once again helps to protect the rights of ravers.

Now here I am making a big fuss about ravers, when my buddy Sean Kelly hates them so much. And I should say that I like a lot of electronic music, but I have never been into the rave scene (and the stuff I like is not generally the type played at raves). Still I consider them an important sub-culture and they are citizens of the U.S.A which used to mean something. *weep*!

Monday, July 15, 2002

I'd like to take this moment to recommend to you the SF Gate Morning Fix email newsletter by Mark Morford. A blatant warping of all of the news that is fit to warp by already being warped already in regard at least to all that should be right in the world, as MM sees that it should be and is glad to tell us. I won't go into a long and poetic gesture at encapsulating his style (in some cases "writing about writing" can be as silly as "dancing about architecture" [btw, here's a fascinating page that I just found on the search for the proper attribution of that quote], but merely point you to the archives/sign-up page which has a couple choice quotes. Suffice to say he has a viewpoint that I think well represents and will tend to delight the intelligent cynical San Francisco resident who would really like to be an optimist if the world didn't suck so bad. He also likes lube. It's Politically Incorrect meets The Daily Show at News-of-the-Weird's house, and there's a sex columnist moonlighting as Cultural Weather Man. And he's not a fan of Dick Cheney. I'm doing it, aren't I? I'm just going to link to the archives again.

The Morning Fix comes out 3 times a week and is waaaaay to long to read all of everytime. But whenever you focus on it, it will bring you joy.

Today he asks Why Is No One Talking About The Walking Meat-Eating Fish? referring to a a very real newswire story about a carnivorous fish from China that has been released in a pond in Maryland. There were two of them 2 years ago, now there are at least 100. It wouldn't be so much a concern if they weren't cable of [walking] short distances on their fins in search of food. Morford also points in today's installment to an article on the Phil Donoahue's new TV show, which I feel like doing, too. Morford is not related to Morford, so far as I know, but I'm sure the conversations, if they ever had any, would be fascinating.

Ever wonder what's in Steve Martin's art collection?

Checkout my Dadafest performance!

DADAfest went fantastically well over the weekend! More on this hot issue soon, including a few mp3s of what I did for it.

Saturday, July 13, 2002

Just a crazy little post about how DADAFEST is going on this weekend--I'm performing and I made collages which are up in the gallery. Also there's a play at The EXIT theater running this month which is based on the life of one of the only women in the original Dada scene Elsa von-Freytag Loringhoven
(whom I first discovered in an amazing anthology by Jerome Rothenberg which also included Jackson Mac Low and the cubist poems of Kenneth Rexroth amongst many others. an incredible anthology, I'll link it later). The play is a solo show performed by Christina who is the EXIT's artistic director. The show runs all month on Friday nights. Here's a review.

Saturday, July 06, 2002

Wow. I just found out where the New York Dolls got their name!!! Thank you memepool!

yeah, you need more accounts of 9/11.

But it's impossible to resist reading them, isn't it? It's like pressing on the bruise, it's like listening to Smiths songs when your already depressed, reading her love letters after you've broken up, sticking your neck out the window golden retriever style to see the subject of the ambulance's flashing light. I'm not quite being flippant here, in fact I'm being a bit confessional--I have a post 9/11 condition myself, of news-addiction. I flinch briefly before checking the news sources several times each day. First thing in the morning is usually the worst, or when I've been away from it for a while. Checking multiple sources is almost requisite (one might be missing it, maybe it just happened). Things like the LAX shooting are darkly pleasing fulfillments of that wannabe psychic impulse that made me check the news just... THEN. Like hitting re-load to see if the headline has changed and something traumatic has occurred. NOW! no. NOW! no....

Anyway, it's not as bad as last fall. I was out of the country when it happened, so I was news-deprived and language-challenged as far as keeping up with developments. The International Herald Tribune was a godsend, btw. I believe that in the future they will call this nervous news-minding something and cite statistics on it. For now I'm just a dork.

Friday, July 05, 2002

mikl's socca madness is over

Okay, it's almost 2 weeks since my last post and nearly a week after the World Cup final, so I should give this some closure. The World Cup tournament has been held (almost) every four years since 1930. In 72 years and 17 tournaments only 7 nations have ever won the cup. This year after a tournament full of upsets and strong showings by teams with relatively little experience in the World Cup (South Korea had played in 5, including the last 4, but never made it past the first round; Turkey & Japan were in their second Cup ever; Senegal was in its first--all of them had very impressive showings), the final featured two of the biggest traditional football powers: Germany and Brazil.

Brazil defeated Germany 2-0. Brazil won (congrats to 6rady whose a 6razilofile) despite my enmity for them and the fact that I was doing that I'm crushing your head thing the entire time through all of there games. It really undermines my sense of omnipotence. drag.

Turkey & South Korea played a great game in the consolation match--one of the most enjoyable games to watch of the later rounds of the tournament in my opinion. It featured the fastest goal in World Cup history--Hakan Sukor scored for Turkey 11 seconds into the game. At the end the Korean & Turkish players linked arms and bowed to the 4 corners of the stadium, that was really something. The Korean & Japanese people were incredibly into the tournament, especially with the success of their teams. The Koreans, who made it all the way to the semi-finals developed a particular reputation. Anyway, I had a great month of watching it. The 2006 tournament will be held in Germany--the hours of the game will thus be a bit more manageable than the 11:30 and 4AM start times this year.

I've started kicking a soccer ball around myself again, for the first time in years. Though in the pickup game I was in on Sunday (after watching the new San Francisco Mime Troupe show in Dolores Park) I was schooled a bit; I guess if you don't play in 10 years or so it tends to affect your form.