Happy Birthday, Mom!
Happy birthday, me!
It's a cool thing to share your birthday with your mom.
A news headline got me thinking about Junie
Morrison, a versatile musician
that I've been following since the early days of the Ohio Players through Funkadelic,
with solo projects in between. The guy's interesting, funny and mega-talented.
Looks like he's coming out with a new solo record soon.
His site features an interesting Flash interface. While I'm not completely
thrilled with the way the navigation works, it's nice to see something that
isn't more of the same.
Though it's not completely novel, be sure to check out the "Mixadelic" feature
under "New Music." You can set your own mix levels for different tracks and
add kicks where you like.
DJ" did a similar thing, but went furhter, because you could save
your mixes and e-mail them to your friends.
Slight revisions to my recent poem, based on feedback from my workshop group:
These are my legacy:
Failed experiments in chemistry.
Cushy goos gone hard and brittle,
Diamond-shaped crystals that crumble.
Some might waft jasmine-like scent,
Then sour to reek the foulest stench.
Looped; completely buzzed
On vapor, badly burnt by acid,
Slippery handfuls of awful stuff –
Never thought to put on gloves.
Some see the search as its own reward,
Yet a useless formula remains a dud.
At last it boils down to you + me,
The only ingredients we’ll ever need.
Bryant Park Oops...
Snatched from the "Truth is Stranger than Fiction" files... a Chihuahua
was attacked by a trained hawk in Manhattan's Bryant park. The hawks were
brought in to control the pigeons in the park, and the falconer who manages
figures it thought the dog was a rat. The incident might be enough to kill
the hawk program.
You Are Where You Live
This PRIZM Cluster is most likely to...
•Attend the theater
•Use olive oil
I learned about Claritas Corporation back in the '80s, when I was working
in magazine circulation. Looks like they're still going strong. They match
zip codes with demographic information, to help marketers reach the audiences
in, or avoid
the ones they're not. Try
Punch in a few zip codes you know, or look
some up. Read the descriptions of
the clusters closely. Notice your reaction.
Out and about
It's been a wet few days. Still, I had to take my camera out with me. I just
got a new battery pack for it: a DigiPower DPS4000. It's small enough not to
weigh you down, but has enough power to last through several hours of shooting.
Best of all, it didn't cost much, and it's easier to work with than the AA
rechargeable batteries I was using before.
What'd I catch? For one thing, a rainbow...
and a building slowly being torn down...
while life goes on.
One of the books on my wish list is "Vision
and Art: the Biology of Seeing"
by Margaret Livingstone. It's a fascinating look at the biological underpinnings
of how we experience art. Livingstone's contributions might well lead some
artists to advances in their craft. Skimming the book, I came across this:
Blurriness makes it impossible for our brains to use stereopsis. To see
stereoscopic depth, the image needs to be detailed enough that we can detect
the slight differences in the two eyes' images; if the images are blurry,
we can't see the differences... By eliminating some spatial details and blurring
others, the artist hinders stereopsis from telling us that the image is really
flat. This allows other depth cues in the painting, such as shading and perspective,
to produce a more powerful impression...
I took my camera out today, trying to catch a shot of a sign I'd seen the other day. Unfortunately, the weather had taken it. The text read "James Davis: One in a billion, Michael Bloomberg: Boring billionaire."
I am really loving Photoshop. At this size, I don't think you
can appreciate all the nuances of this piece, but I thought I'd share it with
On average, at least twice a day, the dogs behind my apartment start to howl.
There are at least two of them, but at times it sounds like three or four dogs
are chiming in. Sirens set them off. We have a firehouse near enough to hear
the trucks when they head out on a call.
The interesting thing is that a single siren
is usually not enough to get the critters going. Seems that there have to
be at least two sirens. I think the dogs are responding to the intermodulation
of the two siren sounds – because the frequencies are not exactly matched,
they "beat" off each other, creating a third tone that is a byproduct of
When I was a kid, we had a dog named "Napoleon," who would howl at the 5:00
siren. I saw the siren tower once, and there were actually two sirens mounted
on the tower, facing in opposite directions.
I doubt that there's any practical application for my observation. Still,
you might want to take note, next time you notice a dog howling.
Michele: "Frankly, I think this poll only ends up making right wing bloggers
immature and petty..."
John: "I'm more interested in getting the opinions of Conservatives when I
do these things. ... I'd have to disagree on Chomsky. He's been highly influential
poisoner of young minds. Few people have worked harder and have had more success
at getting Americans to hate their own country."
Let's not confuse the baby with the turd floating in the bath water. I don't hate America. I'm pretty disgusted by the folks who are busy redefining what America is. I also think "America" is becoming increasingly irresponsible with regard to the interests and needs of the rest of the world.
A right-wing blogger invited some select friends to vote for who they thought
were the 20 worst figures in American history and came up with a bizarre list
that puts Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter, Jesse Jackson, and Noam Comsky behind
the Rosenbergs and Benedict Arnold. If not for a bit of creative accounting,
Clinton would have tied with the Rosenbergs for second place.
Conservatives love to use variations on the phrase "they hate our country,"
as in Michael Moore Hates America. That's pure bullshit. One thing that upsets
liberals (who tend to be termed "lefties" by the conservatives, because it
makes them sound more "commie") is that they see corrupt, immoral, wallet-driven
behavior being the only valid definition of what it is to be "American."
But back to that thing about the worst figure in American History... What
makes Bill the worst? That he lied? Like we're not being lied to now?
No, I suppose it's about the nature of the lie. It's about the sexuality of
the thing. Kill
all you want, but don't give or receive pleasure; and for heaven's sake, don't
be kinky about it. It still boggles my mind, that so many people in this country
consider lying about
more serious offense than the Iran/Contra Affair (or, is that too complex for
the "average" American to comprehend?). Oh – and there was also that fiasco called
the Watergate break-in...
At least it's very clear that conservatives and liberals have very different visions of "American." I think it'd be an interesting exercise to try and spell out those differences in a concrete manner; maybe a couple more lists?! Well, maybe I'll write more on this some other time.
The dogs just howled for the second time today.