Sunday, December 28, 2003

The Lenny Bruce FBI File
Lenny Bruce
Reading & Writing: " I discovered Lenny Bruce in my late twenties--just out of grad school & dirt-poor in Seattle, I read How to Talk Dirty & Influence People with a growing realization that Bruce was my century's Whitman, a poet who took democracy seriously. I've since had the opportunity to listen to recordings of Bruce in performance & my initial reaction is confirmed: Lenny Bruce was our first performance poet. He's ahead of David Antin & Patti Smith. Whitman broke through, Bruce broke through. Neither spared himself embarrassment. I think, for myself, after a decade of intimidation by language poets on one side & new freaking formalists on the other, I may have found my way forward in this particular lineage. I won't call it a tradition. There is a radical middle in American poetry (& politics, by the way) that often is confused with middle-of-the-road, but the confusion is a symptom of sloppy thinking (& political manipulation): pray you avoid it. The dominant culture is busy turning the radical--or its images--into the mainstream; it has to be the business of artists to resist the process & to reinvent the images when they have been drained of their juice & pulse. What Whitman called urge. What Lenny Bruce called truth."
nice obit for Horst Buchholz
Gwynne Dyer: "The Bush administration is probably wishing quite hard by now that Saddam had waited a little longer and been killed in his hole. While others debate where he should be tried and by whom, and whether he should face the death penalty or not, President Bush's people will be realizing just about now that they can't afford to give him a fair trial at all"

Saturday, December 27, 2003

Frank Rich: Napster Runs for President in ’04
Indian Mounds of Mississippi
Signage: "In what honor and dignity this art was anciently held amongst the Greeks and Romans, the old authors sufficiently testify; though afterwards all but lost, while it lay hid for more than a thousand years. It has now at length, only within the last two hundred years, by some Italians been brought again to light. For it is the easiest thing in the world for the Arts to be lost and perish; but only with difficulty, and after long time and pains are they resuscitated."

Friday, December 26, 2003

John Newlove 1938-2003
Ride Off Any Horizon

Ride off any horizon
and let the measure fall
where it may-

on the hot wheat,
on the dark yellow fields
of wild mustard, the fields

of bad farmers, on the river,
on the dirty river full
of boys and on the throbbing

powerhouse and the low dam
of cheap cement and rocks
boiling with white water,

and on the cows and their powerful
bulls, the heavy tracks
filling with liquid at the edge

of the narrow prairie
river running steadily away.


Ride off any horizon
and let the measure fall
where it may-

among the piles of bones
that dot the prairie

in vision and history
(the buffalo and deer,

dead indians, dead settlers
the frames of lost houses

left behind in the dust
of the depression,

dry and profound, that
will come again in the land

and in the spirit, the land
shifting and the minds

blown dry and empty-
I have not seen it! except

in pictures and talk-
but there is the fence

covered with dust, laden,
the wrecked house stupidly empty)-

here is a picture for your wallet,
of the beaten farmer and his wife
leaning toward each other-

sadly smiling, and emptied of desire.


Ride off any horizon
and let the measure fall
where it may-

off the edge
of the black prairie

as you thought you could fall,
a boy at sunset

not watching the sun
set but watching the black earth,

never-ending they said in school,
round: but you saw it ending,

finished, definite, precise-
visible only miles away.


Ride off any horizon
and let the measure fall
where it may-

on a hot night the town
is in the streets-

the boys and girls
are practising against

each other, the men
talk and eye the girls-

the women talk and
eye each other, the indians
play pool: eye on the ball.


Ride off any horizon
and let the measure fall
where it may-

and damn the troops, the horsemen
are wheeling in the sunshine,
the cree, practising

for their deaths: mr poundmaker,
gentle sweet mr big bear,
it is not unfortunately

quite enough to be innocent,
it is not enough merely
not to offend-

at times to be born
is enough, to be
in the way is too much-

some colonel otter, some
major-general middleton will
get you, you-

indian. It is no good to say,
I would rather die
at once than be in that place-

though you love that land more,
you will go where they take you.


Ride off any horizon
and let the measure fall-

where it may;
it doesn't have to be

the prairie. It could be
the cold soul of the cities
blown empty by commerce

and desiring commerce
to fill up the emptiness

The streets are full of people.

It is night, the lights
are on; the wind

blows as far as it may. The streets
are dark and full of people.

Their eyes are fixed as far as
they can see beyond each other-

to the concrete horizon, definite,
tall against the mountains,
stopping vision visibly.

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

Sold Amazing Sea Monkeys, X-Ray Specs in comic books: "But von Braunhut's piece de resistance was Sea Monkeys -- which come from dried-up lake bottoms, not the sea, and are not monkeys but brine shrimp. His extravagant claims for the crustaceans -- for example, that they come back from the dead and that they can be trained and hypnotized -- are convincing because they are sort of true. "
Tartes framboises I'll stop now
Boulangerie: A Pocket Guide to Paris's Famous Bakeries
Parisian Bakeries
Lord Love a Duck & To Live and Die in LA out on DVD

Monday, December 22, 2003

Perfect Sound Forever- always lots here, this time including a nice long piece on Elvis in Memphis 1969...
Today is the 25th anniversary of Bernadette Mayer's "Midwinter Day"-- (please excuse reformatting)

"...Sophia's mittens come off,
The disappearing scene from a dream I'd remember is lost
To comparisons of past exertion for the slight Main Street hill,
I blink at seeing, being seen a little
I wonder why we write at all
These trees have seen this all before
But they are glad of an encore"

Sunday, December 21, 2003

Radio News December 1947 Aging rack for radio tubes
The Digital Snow Museum
dec47: "The final week of the month and of the year of 1947, leads off with the announcement that 'Peg 'O My Heart' by The Harmonicats for the small independent label Vitacoustics is the largest selling record in modern history for an independent. Sales figures are put at more than one and a half million. . . . . . Other recent million sellers are 'Near You' by Francis Craig for the indie label Bullet, and Frankie Laine's Mercury recording of 'That's My Desire'. . . . . . . best bets of the last week of the year are 'When You Come To The End Of The Day' by The Inkspots (Decca), 'The Best Things In Life Are Free' by Jo Stafford (Capitol), 'Unison Riff' by Stan Kenton (Capitol), 'I've Got A Feeling I'm Falling' by Perry Como (RCA), 'Sierra Madre' / 'Don't Call It Love' by Freddy Martin with Stuart Wade-voc (RCA), 'My Old Flame' by Spike Jones (RCA), and 'Two Loves Have I' by Guy Lombardo (Decca). . . . . .John Hammond is named vice president of Mercury Records . . . . . .Jack Owens Tower Records artist is known as 'the cruising crooner' on ABC radio's 'Breakfast Club' . . . . . .new on the best seller list at year's end are : 'How Soon' by Dinah Shore (Columbia), 'I Can't Give You Anything But Love' by Rose 'Chee Chee' Murphy (Majestic), 'Serenade Of The Bells' by Sammy Kay (RCA), 'How Soon' by Vaughn Monroe (RCA), 'I'll Dance At Your Wedding' by Buddy Clark and Ray Noble (Columbia), 'How Soon' by Jack Owens (Tower), 'I'm My Own Grandpa' by Guy Lombardo (Decca), 'Civilization' by Woody Herman (Capitol), and 'You Do' by Vaughn Monroe (RCA). . . . . two albums hit the top five this week - 'Good News' the original cast (MGM) and 'King Cole Trio - vol. 3' (Capitol). "
December 1947 Snowstorm in Stamford and the Bronx
Charlie Parker and Red Rodney
Charlie Parker Sessions: "December 21, 1947 (11 items, 18:51)
United Sound Studio, Detroit
Commercial for Savoy
Charlie Parker Quintet
Charlie Parker (as); Miles Davis (tpt); Irving 'Duke' Jordan (p); Tommy Potter (b); Max Roach (d)

Another Hair-Do (C. Parker) (take 1 (inc))0:14
Another Hair-Do (C. Parker) (take 2 (inc))0:44
Another Hair-Do (C. Parker) (take 3 (inc))1:04
Another Hair-Do (C. Parker) (take 4 (master))2:37
Bluebird (C. Parker) (take 1)2:53
Bluebird (C. Parker) (take 2)0:03
Bluebird (C. Parker) (take 3 (master))2:49
Klaunstance (C. Parker) [The Way You Look Tonight]2:44
Bird Gets the Worm (C. Parker) (take 1) [Lover Come Back to Me]3:00
Bird Gets the Worm (C. Parker) (take 2 (inc)) [Lover Come Back to Me]0:09
Bird Gets the Worm (C. Parker) (take 3 (master)) [Lover Come Back to Me]"

Friday, December 19, 2003

from the Testimony of Phillip Ochs in the Chicago Seven Trial
"MR. KUNSTLER: After you arrived in Chicago did you have any discussion with Jerry?
THE WITNESS: Yes, I did. We discussed the nomination of a pig for President.
MR. KUNSTLER: Would you state what you said and what Jerry said.
THE WITNESS: We discussed the details. We discussed going out to the countryside around Chicago and buying a pig from a farmer and bringing him into the city for the purposes of his nominating speech.
MR. KUNSTLER: Did you have any role yourself in that?
THE WITNESS: Yes, I helped select the pig, and I paid for him.
MR. KUNSTLER: Now, did you find a pig at once when you went out?
THE WITNESS: No, it was very difficult. We stopped at several farms and asked where the pigs were.
MR. KUNSTLER: None of the farmers referred you to the police station, did they?
MR. FORAN: Objection.
THE COURT: I sustain the objection.
MR. KUNSTLER: Mr. Ochs, can you describe the pig which was finally bought?
MR. FORAN: Objection.
THE COURT., I sustain the objection.
MR. KUNSTLER: Would you state what, if anything, happened to the pig?
THE WITNESS: The pig was arrested with seven people.
MR. KUNSTLER: When did that take place?
THE WITNESS: This took place on the morning of August 23, at the Civic Center underneath the Picasso sculpture.
MR. KUNSTLER: Who were those seven people?
THE WITNESS: Jerry Rubin. Stew Albert, Wolfe Lowenthal, myself is four; I am not sure of the names of the other three.
MR. KUNSTLER: What were you doing when you were arrested?
THE WITNESS: We were arrested announcing the pig's candidacy for President. "
Phil Ochs remembered
Happy Birthday Phil Ochs

William Butler Yeats Visits Lincoln Park and Escapes Unscathed

As I went out one evening to take the evening air
I was blessed by a blood-red moon,
In Lincoln Park the dark was turning.
I spied a fair young maiden and a flame was in her eyes
And on her face lay the steel blue skies
Of Lincoln Park, the dark was turning

They spread their sheets upon the ground just like a wandering tribe
And the wise men walked in their Robespierre robes,
Through Lincoln Park the dark was turning
The towers trapped and trembling, and the boats were tossed about
When the fog rolled in and the gas rolled out
From Lincoln Park the dark was turning

Like wild horses freed at last we took the streets of wine
But I searched in vain for she stayed behind
In Lincoln Park the dark was turning
I'll go back to the city where I can be alone
And tell my friend she lies in stone
In Lincoln Park the dark was turning
Phil Ochs
A writer's life: Anthony Lane: "The truth is, that if you're working on a piece at three in the morning, you're not Keats; you're just late. "
Law & Order Colouring Book
Todd Rundgren on RIAA : "The reason why the RIAA comes off as a gang of
ignorant thugs is because, well, how do I put this --
they are. I came into this business in an age of
entrepreneurial integrity. The legends of the golden
age of recorded music were still at the helm of most
labels -- the Erteguns, the Ostins, the Alperts and
Mosses by the dozens. Now we have four monolithic (in
every sense of the word) entities and a front
organization that crows about the fact that they have
solved their problems by leaning on a 12-year-old.
Thank God that mystical fascination with the world of
music has been stubbed out -- hopefully everyone will
get the message and get over the idea that the
musician actually meant for you to hear this."
Jason Gross's Favourite Scribings for 2003 long, very interesting list of music articles

Thursday, December 18, 2003

Toll road built on pulped fiction: "Unsold copies of the books were shredded into a paste and added to a mixture of asphalt and Tarmac. It helps to bind the asphalt and the Tarmac, preventing the surface from splitting apart after heavy use."
amazing Stop Motion Studies thanks Reid!
What Have The Victorians Ever Done For Us?
What a Crappy Present - CD Gift Advice, Parents and Kids

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Googling (I wrote "looking") for Williams' "To Ford Madox Ford in Heaven" to post for Ford's birthday--nowhere in sight of course--the modernist canon deep in copyright--I found this by a band I'd only heard the name of. Much more worked out than the "Gertrude Stein" song I performed in the late 70's, at least lyrically. But the Vacant Lot (later The Band Without Qualities) rocked pretty hard. Anyone heard the Ass Ponys?


sarah stood upon the bridge
on the railing, near the edge
the only thing that brought her in
was a book that she had read
the novel's name was long since lost
never mind the cost
the only thing she could recall
was that the author's name was ford

it was written in nineteen ten
you could never have met a finer man
worked a farm for fifteen years
just to see if he could
he lost his memory in the war
he forgot what he was fighting for
the only thing he knew for sure
his name was ford madox ford

ford madox ford
the fattest poet who ever lived
his name was ford madox ford

joseph conrad and henry james
were two of the many famous names
that fat boy ford could claim
to be his bosom friends
then one day conrad said to him
i may be climbing out upon a limb
but it would help you out my friend
if you would lose a little weight

ford madox ford
the fattest poet who ever lived
his name was ford madox ford"
100 aspects of the moon

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

The Ultimate on-the-fly Network: "'Up until now, a biologist from the 1920s could have dropped into today's world and understood everything we do.' He shakes his head. 'No longer.' The instruments that unobtrusively observe the petrels will unleash a stream of information biologists have craved for decades. When I ask what other tool has delivered a comparable advance in his field, Anderson's answer is succinct and telling: 'Binoculars.'"
Hey Ya!: "'Polaroid Canada thanks Canadians for making Polaroid One the country's number one instant camera, and for making 'Shake it like a Polaroid picture' the
country's number one instant party call,' said Jeff Carpenter, National Sales & Marketing Manager, Canada. 'From Andy Warhol to the D.I.Y home renovator, the world has embraced our products to capture one-of-a-kind moments. We congratulate OutKast for their imaginative use of the Polaroid brand and spirit.'"
Wagner vs. Tolkien

Monday, December 15, 2003

Valerie Dore "It's So Easy" is sheer ecstacy, Abba with a huge 4/4 whomp and slap bass. How can it be so easy?
Boogieing across the house to Sandy Marton's "People from Ibiza" for a refill I managed to spill cold coffee on myself. The guy on the next track (urging me not to cry) sounds like Geddy Lee's Italian cousin.
Neil Tennant in 1985 on Italo Disco (which I had to switch to): "...It used to be regarded as utterly tragic... that 'boom clap boom clap boom clap - clap clap', that's what I particularly like about eurodisco. And normally they have very good tunes as well. The other thing it that it's very sad. They have very sweet tunes, like Savage's 'Don't Cry Tonight'. A lot of the records we like are Italian. The other thing about eurodisco records it that they always sound like they're dead cheap. I think that's their appeal. They're a bit like punk records - they go in and get very excited by the most banal sounds. We're very attracted to banal sounds and rhythms. They'll quite often be a sound that is the sound of the moment, and every record will have that sound. At the moment, there's that vocal that goes 'oh woah oh'. This summer, on every italian record, there was at least one 'oh woah oh'. I think that's been the theme for 1985. RAFF's 'Self Control' started it, which of course was originally an italian disco record, and Laura Branigan covered it. And of course, Baltimora used it. That was the ultimate 'oh woah oh' record. It was very clever the way that was the foundation of 'Tarzan Boy'. Before that, the syndrum was a popular sound. But they're constantly changing, these euro records. And they normally have very good female vocalists, in the same way a lot of hi-NRG and Bobby O records do. The male vocal aren't usually very good. ... Often the lyrics are very banal, there's this great one called 'Capsicum' that's a green pepper isn't it. And the chorus goes 'Capsi capsicum oh woah oh'. That is brilliant. The banality of them often makes them strongely moving, somehow. I don't think a lot of people will appreciate things like this. The thing is, of course, that this music is terribly unhip in Europe. We go abroad and they think we're absolutely insane; they say "You do not like Simple Minds?" They can't believe we like "capsi capsicum". I think part of the delight of it in my case is liking something obscure that's obscure for the sake of it I think I genuinely like it, actually. I like it because it's obscure and also because it's fantastically unfashionable."
Joss Stone: The Soul Sessions
and Sam Cooke's SAR Records Story on the old victrola today.
Jesus hates it when you smoke
scary cats for Mina

Sunday, December 14, 2003

from wood's lot--
PEDESTRIAN CULTURE THROUGH THE AGES: "In 1913 Wyneken proclaimed the ideas behind the Wandervögel by stating that the youth had the right to live according to their own ideas, outside the rules of society in which there were born involuntarily. Bored with the industrial artificiality of urban life, disgusted by the hypocrisy of life they fled into wild nature. they drifted for days, sometimes weeks on end through the woods. They lived on the food nature provided, in the evening the partook in excessive community singing around bonfires. The nights were dedicated to the first detours in the field of sexuality."

Friday, December 12, 2003


Millennium Actress
Thanks to MK for reminding me that it's the Hector Berlioz bicentenary--crank it up!
Happy Birthdays to Jacqueline Waters
Drew Gardner
Deanna Ferguson
& Dan Farrell
Robbie Burns Night, Malaspina U-C Discovery Room
Syllabub, boiled baby, white soup, etc.
Mysterious ice balls falling from heavens: "'I'm not worried that a block of ice may fall on your head,' said Jesus Martinez-Frias of the Center for Astrobiology in Madrid.
'I'm worried that great blocks of ice are forming where they shouldn't exist.'"
Feral Children

Thursday, December 11, 2003

List of lists
A poem of mine from "Hammertown" is in the print version of the Literary Review of Canada.
PK's Web Rant and News Forum has good facts on the strike--
Being in a pen with a wounded bull.: "For instance, an American from San Diego is quoted saying: 'What bugs me about Canadians, if I may, is that they wear that damn patch on their bags, the Canadian flag patch. That way, they differentiate themselves from us.'"
Ferries on strike here, much typical hysteria in the media but here is the Marine Worker's Union site.

Wednesday, December 10, 2003

Pulpfiction Books has a mess of new books in for holiday browsing, and a new branch I didn't even know about!
Happy Birthday Olivier Messiaen--

“In my hours of gloom, when I am suddenly aware of my own futility, when every musical idiom – classical, Oriental, ancient, modern, and ultra-modern – appears to me as no more than admirable, painstaking experimentation, without any ultimate justification, what is left for me but to seek out the true, lost face of music somewhere off in the forest, in the fields, in the mountains, or on the seashore, among the birds.”

and Emily Dickinson--

The Birds reported from the South—
A News express to Me—
A spicy Charge, My little Posts—
But I am deaf—Today—

The Flowers—appealed—a timid Throng—
I reinforced the Door—
Go blossom for the Bees—I said—
And trouble Me—no More—

The Summer Grace, for Notice strove—
Remote—Her best Array—
The Heart—to stimulate the Eye
Refused too utterly—

At length, a Mourner, like Myself,
She drew away austere—
Her frosts to ponder—then it was
I recollected Her—

She suffered Me, for I had mourned—
I offered Her no word—
My Witness—was the Crape I bore—
Her—Witness—was Her Dead—

Thenceforward—We—together dwelt—
I never questioned Her—
Our Contract
A Wiser Sympathy

Continental Drift Cam

Monday, December 08, 2003 Writing Systems
via the mighty Plep--Aspects of the Victorian book
Canadian Poetry excellent historical resource
Horace, Ode 1.9 (adapted by Alan Ramsey):

"An Ode to Ph----

Look up to Pentland's tow'ring tap,
Buried beneath great wreaths of snaw,
O'er ilka cleugh, ilk scar, and slap,
As high as ony Roman wa'.

Driving their ba's frae whins or tee,
There's no nae gowfer to be seen,
Nor dousser fouk wysing a-jee
The byast bouls on Tamson's green.

Then fling on coals, and ripe the ribs,
And beek the house baith but and ben,
That mutchkin stoup it hauds but dribs,
Then let's get in the tappit hen.

Good claret best keeps out the cauld,
And drives away the winter soon;
It makes a man baith gash and bauld,
And heaves his saul beyond the moon.

Leave to the gods your ilka care,
If that they think us worth their while
They can a rowth of blessings spare,
Which will our fasheous fears beguile.

For what they have a mind to do,
That will they do, should we gang wud;
If they command the storms to blaw,
Then upo' sight the hailstanes thud.

But soon as e'er they cry -- 'Be quiet,'
The blatt'ring winds dare nae mair move,
But cour into their caves, and wait
The high command of supreme Jove.

Let neist day come as it thinks fit,
The present minute's only ours;
On pleasure let's employ our wit,
And laugh at fortune's feckless powers.

Be sure ye dinna quat the grip
Of ilka joy when ye are young,
Before auld age your vitals nip,
And lay ye twafald o'er a rung.

Sweet youth's a blyth and heartsome time;
Then, lads and lasses, while it's May,
Gae pou the gowan in its prime
Before it wither and decay.

Watch the saft minutes of delyte
When Jenny speaks beneath her breath,
And kisses, laying a' the wyte
On you, if she keap ony skaith.

"Haith, ye're ill-bred," she'll smiling say,
"Ye'll worry me, ye greedy rook;"
Syne frae your arms she'll rin away,
And hide hersell in some dark nook.

Her laugh will lead you to the place
Where lies the happiness you want,
And plainly tells you to your face
Nineteen nay says are ha'f a grant.

Now to her heaving bosom cling,
And sweetly toolie for a kiss,
Frae her fair finger whop a ring,
As taiken of a future bliss.

These bennisons, I'm very sure,
Are of the gods' indulgent grant;
Then, surly carles, whisht, -- forbear
To plague us with your whining cant. "
Happy Birthday Horace! (thanks Laurable)

Sunday, December 07, 2003

BULLITT locations--starts in 10 minutes!!
Snowball fight (shockwave)
North Bay News : "'The program is kind of like the pantheon of pop culture and it's nice to see Project Grizzly, which has already achieved cult status, enter the larger popular cultural arena,' Lynch said.

'Being part of The Simpsons will give Project Grizzly more of a mythic status while also giving it currency.'

Lynch said Canadians are “passive consumers” of American culture and of myths that “glorify” American heroes and values.

'Troy and his men aren't simply watching Robocop or the Terminator trilogy; they're attempting to live it. The Simpsons has its finger on the pulse of zeitgeist pop culture. And it takes a classic like Project Grizzly and transforms it even further through mainstream mythic consciousness,' Lynch said".

Saturday, December 06, 2003

ASHER BROWN DURAND research uncovers Halleck link--:
"In 1867, evidently in anticipation of making a grand gesture on his wedding anniversary, Field prevailed upon his friend Fitz-Greene Halleck to invent a second verse:

And that I am all the world to her,
It joys my breath to say, For her beating heart has told me so
For many a happy day. For many a happy day-
And her bonny lip and eye, Oh! my darling Floy Van Cortlandt,
'Tis for thee Id live and die.

Then, Field asked Durand to complete the three-way collaborative gift. It was not unusual for Durand to accept a landscape commission in which setting and various details were stipulated by the patron. He enhanced Field's memory image of thirty years by setting the courting couple, moon, clouds, and the shores of a winding I Hudson River into the type of landscape in vogue when both he and his patron were young men by reverting to the classical landscape formula of tile seventeenth-century French painter Claude Lorrain, on which he hid frequently relied thirty ' years earlier. During the 1860s, Durand occasionally created landscapes in which such older formulas reappear."
Slate test drives the dictionaries

Friday, December 05, 2003

David Hemmings
Dams: the beavers' dams: "I don't like calling beavers engineers. What humans engineer either works or doesn't work any more. Beavers have a more encompassing view of the environment than humans. Their 'work' fits more organically into the natural scheme of things. One 300 foot dam I patrol has good sized bushes growing out of it."
Language Log has these Beaver terms from the Carrier language of BC's interior:

tsatsul--beaver of mid-sized variety
tsayaz--beaver of small variety
tsati--beaver of large variety
tsachenisboo'--beaver kit
tsata'--adult male beaver
tsa'at--female beaver
tsadiya--mother beaver
tsacho--male beaver that is the boss of a whole area
tsaken--beaver lodge
'utsut--runway from lodge of beaver or muskrat to land
lht'azutnai--pair of beaver lodges built close together behind one dam
'udats'un--beaver harpoon
tsambilh--beaver snare
'ulhtusti--trail over beaver dam
tsata'ti--beaver channel under the ice"
Luke Vibert video


Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Bemsha Swings with some lovely drummer photos
"Bobo" Fulford on Lost in Translation
Is Miles Davis really dead?: "McLaughlin's power-guitar solo that opens the track should be used to sort out the wheat from the chaff in the air guitar Olympics. Around bar 50 he begins to get ready to pass the lead to Davis and begins a climatic buildup from bar 60, a masterpiece of impromptu construction that climaxes with Davis's entry at bar 75. Davis makes the most of what he's been given. Just as Scarpia's entrance in Act 1 of Puccini's Tosca is one of the great, dramatic moments in opera, so Davis's commanding entry here is one of the great moments in jazz. "

Sunday, November 30, 2003

looks like robot wisdom weblog, the original "weblog" is no more...only this cache...
Happy Birthday Jack Sheldon!
Cinnamon: "'We were looking at the effects of common foods on blood sugar,' he told New Scientist. One was the American favourite, apple pie, which is usually spiced with cinnamon. 'We expected it to be bad. But it helped,' he says."
Giving cats a chance in life: "Behind him are several miniature dwellings that look like igloos. The cats sleep in the tiny huts, which the volunteers line with straw in the winter. 'They're like little subdivisions,' Shaw says. "
Dave Till's Toronto Photos - ghost signs
Dictionary of Victorian London
Referential Communication with an African Grey Parrot: "Alex has learned over 40 object labels: paper, key, nut, wood, wheat, truck, hide (rawhide chips), peg wood (clothes pins), grain, cork, corn, walnut, block, box, showah (shower), banana, pasta, gym, cracker, scraper (nail file), popcorn, chain, kiwi, shoulder, rock (a lava stone beak conditioner), carrot, gravel, cup, citrus, back, chair, chalk, water, nail, grape, grate, treat, cherry, wool, green bean, and banerry (apple). We have tentative evidence for labels such as bread and jacks. He has functional use of 'no', phrases such as 'come here', 'I want X', and 'Wanna go Y' where X and Y are appropriate labels for objects or locations."

Saturday, November 29, 2003

Brian Auger and Julie Driscoll, London 1968
New Scientist on the three minute pop song: "Right back to Kylie in the 1980s, I have always looked at beats per minute as fundamental to a song. Anything too slow and you get a lethargic reaction. With Stock, Aitken and Waterman we were trying to make people feel uplifted and get their heartbeat moving. There is definitely a point somewhere around 120 bpm when it starts to get excited."
CBC News: Deadline Iraq - Uncensored Stories of the War

Thursday, November 27, 2003

RobertAldrich: an independent career
Adorno on Aldrich
Art & Architecture at the Courtauld institute. A must see.
LINTON GARNER--KSW founder Colin Browne's film about this jazz great on CBC tonight at 7
DUCK, YOU SUCKER at Film Forum in New York City
Useful Noise: "And why not--finally we can close the book on the utopian vision of Thriller and once more successfully police the borders of adulthood and race and sexuality. Of course a black performer who won such a white audience harbors secret dreams of passing. Of course an effeminate adult with so pronounced a childlike side wants to fuck little boys. Glad that's over with. "
Brian Kim Stefans reviews the Sieburth Pound: "Impatience and a sense of wonder might be the two best qualities of a critic, though neither is very useful without a decent prose style. "
The Dominion Daily Weblog another BC blog
The Tyee independent news from BC
Portrait of Anna Akhmatova
Beckford's Tower & Museum
Laibach Kittens
Ida Lupino
The Big Knife

Wednesday, November 26, 2003

Nealenews-- lots of "wacky Canadian" content on this Drudge-formatted blog
The First Vintage: "But in addition, McGovern thinks, ancient people were probably well aware of the fermentation process whereby yeast turns the sugar in grape juice into alcohol. Indeed, wild grapes frequently carry a dusting of yeast on their skins, probably transported by wasps and other flying insects, and will occasionally ferment right on the vine (birds sometimes become so inebriated eating wild grapes that they fall from their perches). "
Complete Poetical Works by William Cowper

from "The Winter Walk at Noon"

Where now the vital energy that moved,
While summer was, the pure and subtle lymph
Through the imperceptible meandering veins
Of leaf and flower? It sleeps; and the icy touch
Of unprolific winter has impress’d
A cold stagnation on the intestine tide.
But let the months go round, a few short months,
And all shall be restored. These naked shoots,
Barren as lances, among which the wind
Makes wintry music, sighing as it goes,
Shall put their graceful foliage on again,
And, more aspiring, and with ampler spread,
Shall boast new charms, and more than they have lost.
Then each , in its peculiar honours clad,
Shall publish, even to the distant eye,
Its family and tribe. Laburnum, rich
In streaming gold; syringa, ivory pure;
The scentless and the scented rose; this red,
And of an humbler growth, the other tall,
And throwing up into the darkest gloom
Of neighbouring cypress, or more sable yew,
Her silver globes, light as the foamy surf
That the wind severs from the broken wave;
The lilac, various in array, now white,
Now sanguine, and her beauteous head now set
With purple spikes pyramidal, as if,
Studious of ornament, yet unresolved
Which hue she most approved, she chose them all:
Copious of flowers the woodbine, pale and wan,
But well compensating her sickly looks
With never-cloying odours, early and late;
Hypericum all bloom, so thick a swarm
Of flowers, like flies clothing her slender rods,
That scarce a leaf appears; mezereon too,
Though leafless, well attired, and thick beset
With blushing wreaths, investing every spray;
Althæa with the purple eye; the broom,
Yellow and bright as bullion unalloy’d,
Her blossoms; and luxuriant above all
The jasmine, throwing wide her elegant sweets,The deep dark green of whose unvarnish’d leaf
Makes more conspicuous, and illumines more
The bright profusion of her scatter’d stars.—
These have been, and these shall be in their day;
And all this uniform, uncolour’d scene
Shall be dismantled of its fleecy load,
And flush into variety again.
Invisible Library of non-existent books. Contains neither "The Boy's Book of Burls" or "Twenty Scottish Verbs Explained" unfortunately.
Umberto Eco--The future of books: "A person reading the Encyclopaedia Britannica every night before sleeping, from the first to the last page, would be a comic character. "
Venus has 'heavy metal mountains'

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

The Women of Juarez Demand Justice
The Groove Monday Made Her "Chasing After the Sun" on repeat mode for the last half-hour...
Red sea urchin 'almost immortal': "'Some of the largest and we believe oldest red sea urchins up to 19 centimetres in size have been found in waters off British Columbia, between Vancouver Island and the mainland.
'By our calculations, they are probably 200 or more years old.
'They can die from attacks by predators, specific diseases or being harvested by fishermen. But even then they show very few signs of age. The evidence suggests that a 100-year-old red sea urchin is just as apt to live another year, or reproduce, as a 10-year-old sea urchin.'
In fact, the indications are that the more mature red sea urchins are the most prolific producers of sperm and eggs, and are perfectly capable of breeding even when incredibly old"
Scottish Cuisine in NYC: "'The other organs can't be included because they're illegal here,' exclaimed the waitress, only half correct. "
Once Upon a Time in the West They've done a very good job with the the DVD, for 14 bucks Canadian!
C'era una volta il west
Sergio Leone: "Leone's explicit employment of reflexive genre clichés in Once Upon a Time in the West, and again in his final film, Once Upon a Time in America, would seem to cast him as a trail-blazing post-modernist, but there is an important difference between Leone's referential system and the 'blank irony' that Frederic Jameson identified as being cental to a post-modern aesthetic. Leone has a profound emotional and intellectual investment in the cinematic mythologies he explores, however compromised and clichéd these mythologies may have become. Thus, as his films become increasingly self-conscious about the 'lost' classical American filmic tradition they are drawing on, they start to exhibit a meditative, melancholic quality that is completely absent from the energetic exuberance of the dollars trilogy. Adrian Martin admirably summed up this aspect of Leone's later work in his book on Once Upon a Time in America:

It was as if, for Leone, such disembodied 'quotations' – if they could be made to retain their mythic intensity and potency – might provide a kind of catharsis or ecstasy for modern-day cinephiles pining over their precious 'lost object'. That is why, finally, form can never be 'pure' in Leone's work: at stake in it is a psychic investment, a whole elaborate machine of selfhood, culture and longing… "

Monday, November 24, 2003

Don't Look in the Rubble for Answers - Look Into Yourself: "BAD CAUSES NEED martyrs. The War on Terror, as conceived by the US President and the British Prime Minister, is a bad cause, and this week in Istanbul it has claimed new martyrs. Both sides in this war - the US-led coalition and the al-Qaeda terrorist network - will be quietly reinforced by what has happened: reinforced in their prejudices; reinforced in their own self-belief, and reinforced in the new support this will bring them. Both gain. The world loses.
When news reached me of Thursday's outrage, I had just reread this passage in The Mill on the Floss, by George Eliot: 'To minds strongly marked by the positive and negative qualities that create severity - strength of will, conscious rectitude of purpose, narrowness of imagination and intellect, great powers of self-control and a disposition to exert control over others - prejudices come as the natural food of tendencies which can get no sustenance out of that complex, fragmentary, doubt-provoking knowledge which we call truth.' "
Cahiers de Corey reports on Lee Ann Brown and Carla Harryman at Cornell
Shandy Hall
Metalepsis: "Reference to something by means of another thing that is remotely related to it, either through a farfetched causal relationship, or through an implied intermediate substitution of terms. Often used for comic effect through its preposterous exaggeration. A metonymical substitution of one word for another which is itself figurative. "
'The Fly'
Uncle Toby and the Widow
Happy Birthday Laurence Sterne!
Why Hari Kunzru refused a literary award sponsored by the xenophobic Mail on Sunday

Saturday, November 22, 2003

Guardian Unlimited Books | News | Author rejects prize from 'anti-migrant' newspaper: "Not since 1972 when John Berger gave half his winnings from the Booker to the Black Panthers, and rubbished book prizes as glorified horse races, has literary London witnessed such a dramatic demonstration of writerly conscience."
Moon Lore

Thursday, November 20, 2003

City Lights: Vancouver's Neon Heritage
belated birthday greetings to William Cowper :

from "The Winter Morning Walk"

"The cattle mourn in corners where the fence
Screens them, and seem half petrified to sleep
In unrecumbent sadness. There they wait
Their wonted fodder; not like hung'ring man,
Fretful if unsupply'd; but silent, meek,
And patient of the slow-pac'd swain's delay.
He from the stack carves out th' accustom'd load,
Deep-plunging, and again deep-plunging oft,
His broad keen knife into the solid mass:
Smooth as a wall the upright remnant stands,
With such undeviating and even force
He severs it away: no needless care,
Lest storms should overset the leaning pile
Deciduous, or its own unbalanc'd weight."
the sevenups when's this coming out on dvd??
Conrad Black's retinue of insiders, cronies, and clunkers: "Given this cast of characters, it should come as no surprise that over the years the stock of Hollinger International has failed to keep pace with the broad market indexes and many of its peer media companies. After all, putting a bunch of right-wingers with occasionally dubious foreign policy credentials in the position of directing a profit-making business seems almost as illogical as putting a bunch of right-wingers with occasionally dubious business credentials in charge of foreign policy"
Lichen Portrait Gallery

Wednesday, November 19, 2003

Shadwell vs. Dryden
Happy Birthday Billy Strayhorn!

Lush Life

I used to visit all the very gay places
Those come-what-may places
Where one relaxes
on the axis
of the wheel of life
To get the feel of life
From jazz and cocktails

The girls I knew had sad and sullen gray faces
With distingue traces
That used to be there
You could see where they'd been washed away
By too many through the day
Twelve o'clock tales

Then you came along with your siren song
To tempt me to madness
I thought for awhile that your poignant smile
Was tinged with the sadness
Of a great love for me
Ah yes, I was wrong
Again, I was wrong

Life is lonely again
And only last year
Everything seemed so sure
Now life is awful again
A trough full of hearts could only be a bore

A week in Paris could ease the bite of it
All I care is to smile in spite of it

I'll forget you, I will
While yet you are still
Burning inside my brain
Romance is mush
Stifling those who strive
So I'll live a lush life in some small dive
And there I'll be, while I rot with the rest
Of those whose lives are lonely too
The Onion | I Have To Admit: I Love The Nuts: "I'm not a strong-willed squirrel. If you take a can of nuts and dump them in your backyard, you'd better believe I'm gonna eat those nuts. I won't be polite about it, either. I won't share them with the chipmunks or the birds. No, I will behave like a fool to secure those nuts. I'll shove as many nuts in my mouth as I can fit, and chew as fast as possible to make room for more nuts. If I have some leftover nuts, I'll bury them for later. And let me tell you: If I can't find my nuts, there's going to be some frantic chirping and running around, believe me. I don't care if passersby stop, point, and laugh at my actions. They can call me me all sorts of nut-loving names. I won't stop until I find those nuts."
Top Justice Aide Approved Sending Suspect to Syria : "Imad Moustafa, the charge d'affaires at the Syrian Embassy in Washington, has denied Arar was tortured. But he said Syria had no reason to imprison Arar. He said U.S. intelligence officials told their Syrian counterparts that Arar was an al Qaeda member. Syria agreed to take him as a favor and to win goodwill of the United States, he said. "
Silliman's Blog looks at a new book on Gertrude Stein

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

Spinoza and neuroscience

"My view is that the substance of feelings, the heart of feelings, is really a perception of what has changed in our organism, in our bodies during an emotion. Emotions are unlearned responses to certain classes of stimuli. We are equipped to have emotions, thanks to evolution. When we emote we alter the state of the organism in a rather profound manner - the internal milieu, the viscera, the musculature - and we behave in a particular way. The collection of these changes is the emotion, a rather public affair which helps us deal with a threat (think of fear) or with an opportunity (eat or drink or mate). Feelings are the perception of these changes together with the perception of the object or situation that gave rise to the emotion in the first place. In essence, this is James's idea, although Spinoza envisioned something similar. James was attacked for this proposal."
snowflakes the size of cat's head biscuits falling outside (flash)
Seinfeld Blog

BOOKMAN: (Strict) Yeah, '71. That was my first year on the job.. Bad year for libraries. Bad year for America. Hippies burning library cards, Abby Hoffman telling everybody to steal books. I don't judge a man by the length of his hair or the kind of music he listens to. Rock was never my bag. But you put on a pair of shoes when you walk into the New York Public Library, fella.

JERRY: Look, Mr. Bookman. I-I returned that book. I remember it very specifically.

BOOKMAN: You're a comedian, you make people laugh.

JERRY: I try.

BOOKMAN: You think this is all a big joke, don't you?

JERRY: (Completely serious) No, I don't.

BOOKMAN: I saw you on T.V. once; I remembered your name - from my list. I looked it up. Sure enough, it checked out. You think because you're a celebrity that somehow the law doesn't apply to you? That you're above the law?

JERRY: Certainly not.

BOOKMAN: Well, let me tell you something, funny boy. Y'know that little stamp, the one that says "New York Public Library"? Well that may not mean anything to you, but that means a lot to me. One whole hell of a lot. Sure, go ahead, laugh if you want to. I've seen your type before: Flashy, making the scene, flaunting convention. Yeah, I know what you're thinking, 'What's this guy making such a big stink about old library books?' Well, let me give you a hint, junior. Maybe we can live without libraries, people like you and me. Maybe. Sure, we're too old to change the world, but what about that kid, sitting down, opening a book, right now, in a branch at the local library and finding drawings of pee-pees and wee-wees on the Cat in the Hat and the Five Chinese Brothers? Doesn't HE deserve better? Look. If you think this is about overdue fines and missing books, you'd better think again. This is about that kid's right to read a book without getting his mind warped! (Pauses) Or, maybe that turns you on, Seinfeld; maybe that's how y'get your kicks. You and your good-time buddies.. Well I got a flash for ya, joy-boy: Party time is over. Y'got seven days, Seinfeld. (Opens the door to leave. Marion, the librarian, is at Kramer's door. She quickly enters Kramer's apartment and slams the door in fear that Bookman might see her) That is one week!

Happy Birthday Wyndham Lewis
and Johnny Mercer

Monday, November 17, 2003

Happy Birthday Peter Cook!
Armond White on Isaac Julien's "Baltimore" :
"Julien comments on the Matrix phenomenon in Baltimore when Van Peebles’ perambulations cross paths with the stylish Sister’s. In a bit of sci-fi whimsy, the Sister is able to make Van Peebles materialize out of the ether; later, she levitates in one of the museums that feature paintings by Piero della Francesca. Julien’s caprice asserts the power of black imagination within the European institution. He doesn’t merely use black figures to market an old genre the way black performers, including professor Cornel West, are used in the Matrix movies. Julien’s sense of pop history and political necessity emboldens him to assert their presence, their art, as legitimate. (Perhaps the most splendid f/x in any movie this year is a blue plume that mysteriously streaks across all three screens; it’s like an acrylic aerosol spray of graffiti–rude and beautiful ingenuity–made against Baltimore’s concrete-and-clay cityscape.) "
Gordon Burn on US contemporary fiction lost me with the Simpsons dis.
Kenny Dorham: "Kenny Dorham was well known for his quiet, subdued sound. He could play as high and as fast as other trumpet players, but his sound was much softer, earning him the nickname of 'Quiet Kenny.'

His sound had a lot to do with his embochure. You can hear that he plays with his tongue high in his mouth, getting a thin sound. Also, he uses primarily upper air, almost never supporting his sound with lower air.

The combination of the high tongue and lack of lower air support made the sound very light, thin, and soft, giving him the sound that we easily recognize as Kenny Dorham."
listening to Kenny Dorham and the Jazz Prophets play "Autumn in New York" recorded May 31, 1956

Sunday, November 16, 2003

Oregon says unlawful labelling of an MP3 is 'terrorism'
"Other acts described as terrorism include (but are not limited to):
* Blocking traffic
* School walkouts
* Computer crime
* Accepting a bribe
* Theft and Burglary
* Unauthorized use of a vehicle
* Unlawful labeling of a videotape
* Unlawful recording of a live performance
* Negotiating a bad check
* Dogfighting
* Delivery of an imitation controlled substance
* Producing fake IDs
* Using another's driver's license
* Drunk driving
* Selling cigarettes to a minor"
'Shoot-to-kill' demand by US: "Ministers have made clear to Washington that the firepower of the mini-gun will not be available during the state visit to Britain. "
Chic Drummer Tony Thompson Dead
Afternoon of a Blakey-ite: "The existence of an 'abysmal' Lee Morgan session suggests another thought. It's difficult to talk about records like The Sixth Sense, The Witch Doctor, and Roots & Herbs without, on the one hand, seeming to overvalue them from enthusiasm for the idiom and for the players' styles, or, on the other, making them insignificant by reducing them to idiomatic and stylistic examples. One is in danger of becoming the pathetic and unwilling hackworker of one of the most unproductive of all critical tasks: contriving to set up an artificial balance between history and appreciation. It's better to love the aesthetic object, to see nothing but it at the moment when one talks about it, and in this way to refuse connoisseurship and spurn the aloof embrace of measure. At the same time, the innocence of a pre-intellectual relationship to the object would be an empty pose. One is left asserting, rather helplessly but also with a certain confidence, the primacy of the pleasure the object gives, a pleasure that the act of talking about the object would perpetuate"
ms page of Balzac
ms page of Thomas Bernhard
Frank Rich: Angels, Reagan and AIDS in America: "Jon Stewart, as always, could be counted on to crystallize that point when discussing the fictional 'live in sin' line last week on 'The Daily Show.' 'As critics point out, Reagan never said anything like that,' Mr. Stewart said. 'In fact he didn't even mention the word AIDS in public until seven years into his presidency. So you can see why people are upset: CBS made someone totally indifferent look callous.'"
Louis Black, via below, eloquently defends Tarantino
Viggo seems like a nice guy
GreenCine Daily terrific movie blog
NDP could form next opposition
The Return of the Giant Hogweed
The Amazing Story of Kudzu the vine that ate the South
Red River rebellion:
"The situation in the Canadian Northwest in 1884 was very different from what it had been in Red River in 1869-70. In addition to the disappearance of the herds, the transcontinental Canadian Pacific Railway was nearing completion, and the federal North-West Mounted Police were a strong presence. But in one unfortunate respect, things were all too much the same: Ottawa was still having trouble hearing the voice of the West, particularly that of the Metis. Frustrated at the slow pace of negotiations over the place of the Metis in the province, Riel, on March 8, issued a ten-point bill of rights for the North-West Territories. The manifesto included provisions recognizing the rights of Amerindians and white settlers as well as the rights of the Metis. When Ottawa did not respond, Riel proclaimed a provisional government on March 19 (the name day of Saint Joseph, the patron saint of the Metis) and seized the parish church at Batoche, on the Saskatchewan River. Within a week, with the help of the new railway, federal troops were on the scene."
Louis Riel executed, 1885
British Garden Birds

Saturday, November 15, 2003

James Boswell heads south : Woman Just Can't Shake Flock of Crows
Joey Ramone Place
bad map
"After a picture of the lobby of the still-under-construction building ran in the Citizen yesterday, eagle-eyed readers noticed that the Queen Charlotte Islands off the west coast were missing and that Vancouver Island had suddenly become a peninsula. Further, that new peninsula no longer dipped below the 49th Parallel.
Yet, while the map missed out on those bits of Canada, it did not fail to incorporate what appeared to be a new province: Alaska"
John D. MacDonald

Friday, November 14, 2003

The making of apple butter
Blue Ridge blog
Sir Charles Lyell (1797 - 1875) an eminent scientist
Happy Birthday Sir Charles Lyell:

"General Position of Drift with extinct Mammalia in Valleys.
Discoveries of M. Boucher de Perthes at Abbeville.
Flint Implements found also at St. Acheul, near Amiens.
Curiosity awakened by the systematic Exploration of the
Brixham Cave.
Flint Knives in same, with Bones of extinct Mammalia.
Superposition of Deposits in the Cave.
Visits of English and French Geologists to Abbeville and Amiens.

Fluvio-marine Strata, with Flint Implements, near Abbeville.
Marine Shells in same.
Cyrena fluminalis.
Entire Skeleton of Rhinoceros.
Flint Implements, why found low down in Fluviatile Deposits.
Rivers shifting their Channels.
Relative Ages of higher and lower-level Gravels.
Section of Alluvium of St. Acheul.
Two Species of Elephant and Hippopotamus coexisting with Man
in France.
Volume of Drift, proving Antiquity of Flint Implements.
Absence of Human Bones in tool-bearing Alluvium, how explained.
Value of certain Kinds of negative Evidence tested thereby.
Human Bones not found in drained Lake of Haarlem. "
amazing snapshot archive
where lego comes from (flash)
Equanimity notes Canada's quiet one-party handover from Reaganesque "little guy" phony Chretien, who actually gets credit for keeping us out of the coalition as if it was some brave thing, to Paul Martin, who probably wouldn't have.
film moratorium in home of realism (olefactory?): "DUMBO - Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass - has become an extremely popular backdrop, thanks to its gritty urban realism, old factory buildings and sweeping views of Manhattan and the East River. " - The 100 Worst "Groaners"

Thursday, November 13, 2003

walking all of Manhattan
Bender in Vegas
Catalog of Birds: "'Then comes a further difficulty, the reproduction of timbres. If I want to reproduce on piano, let's say, the song of a garden warbler or a nightingale, I need to find a complex of pitches for every melody-note. Each note of the melody is furnished with a chord. It consists quite simply of conforming to reality, not only to the birdsongs, but also to everything surrounding them: the landscapes, fragrances, colors, and above all, the passing of the hours during the day and night. It's very complicated. "
And a nice pic too: "As snails are wont to do, these sulfide-armored creatures live sedentary lives. This species doesn't even bother to eat. Instead, the animals gain energy from symbiotic bacteria that live within the cells of a gland in their esophagus, says Waren."
bad toon rising
from "Breathless"
SAINT JEAN Seberg, actress hounded to death by the FBI, born today
Let them sing it for you
flash Omelet Recipe

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

Orange Penguins
Burying brutal truths about war:

"Noticeably absent, though, has been the New York Times, which, according to an electronic search, has never even referenced the Blade series or its historic findings in its print pages. Asked about the omission, a Times spokeswoman did not return calls by deadline.

The Times' peculiar silence has raised eyebrows in some journalistic circles. 'I'm appalled the New York Times hasn't run anything,' says investigative journalist Seymour Hersh. 'Not even a wire story?' Additionally, for three weeks none of the network news operations or all-news cable channels picked up the Blade's report. Asked if he's surprised by the lack of media pickup, Hersh answers, 'I'm enraged, are you kidding?' Hersh, who won a Pulitzer for uncovering the 1968 My Lai massacre, where U.S. troops killed hundreds of Vietnamese civilians, suggests the Blade's work has been ignored because of a chill that's in the media air today, with troops on the ground in Iraq, and the White House claiming too much attention is being paid to bad news. "
Tiger Force must read Vietnam series from Toledo Blade
NPR : Sewer Cleaners, Dirty Work: "Americans' perception of sewer workers, Speer says, 'is largely defined by one 1950s-era television show' -- The Honeymooners, in which comedians Jackie Gleason and Art Carney played bus driver Ralph Kramden and his pal Ed Norton, a sewer worker. Real-life sewer workers 'aren't above joking about the work they do,' says Speer -- but they contend their lives are nothing like a TV sit-com. "
The Wine of Life: The Meaning of Drainage:
"This alligator was pinto: pale white, seaweed black. It moved fast but clumsy. It could have been lazy, or old or stupid. Profane thought maybe it was tired of living.
The chase had been going on since nightfall. They were in a section of 48-inch pipe, his back was killing him. Profane hoped the alligator would not run off into something smaller, somewhere he couldn't follow. Because then he would have to kneel in the sludge, aim half-blind and fire., all quickly, before the cocodrilo got out of range. Angel held the flashlight, but he had been drinking wine, and would crawl along behind Profane absent-mindedly, letting the beam waver all of the pipe. Profane could only see the coco in occasional flashes.
From time to time his quarry would half-turn, coy, enticing. A little sad. Up above it must have been raining. A continual thin drool sounded behind them at the last sewer opening. Ahead was darkness. The sewer tunnel here was torturous and built decades ago. Profane was hoping for a straightaway. He could make an easy kill there. If he fired anywhere in this stretch of short, crazy angles there'd be danger from ricochets. "
Brooklyn Bound
The Norton Anthology
Neil's Garage
Happy Birthday Shakey!!

You wake up
in the morning
And the sun's comin' up.
Its been up for hours
and hours
and hours
and hours
and hours
and hours
It's been up
for hours
and hours
and hours
And you light up
the stove
And the coffee cup, its hot.
And the orange juice is cold,
cold, cold
Monday morning,
Wake up,
wake up,
wake up,
wake up
Its time to go,
Time to go
to work.

Tuesday, November 11, 2003

New Marianne Moore collected
Drew Gardner's Blog assays Wilder's "Apartment" as well as George and I's reading
Armor-Plated Snail Discovered in Deep Sea: "Waren said that when he first examined the sea snail, the animal's magnetized scales kept sticking to his forceps. He guessed that an iron mineral was involved. "
Songs of ourselves: " In music we hear the echo of our basic sound-making instrument -- the vocal tract. The explanation for human music is simpler still than Pythagoras's mathematical equations: We like the sounds that are familiar to us -- specifically, we like sounds that remind us of us."
Happy Birthday Rene Clair!
No Nanaimo record stores reviewed but still a good resource
Alberta Wheat Pool
Grain Elevators
Buffalo Grain Elevators by Michael Smith
Buffalo Grain Elevator Project : "When LeCorbusier saw the pure cylindrical forms of Buffalo's concrete grain elevators he exclaimed: 'The first fruits of the new age!' "

Sunday, November 09, 2003

wild boys of Vernon: "'I spent a lot of my former life in the bush,' Stinson told the Vancouver Province. 'I once met a person who hadn't been out in society since 1918. We took him out in 1976 and he flipped out seeing cars and stoplights. So is it possible, you bet it is.' "
Happy 18th Brumaire!
"But unheroic though bourgeois society is, it nevertheless needed heroism, sacrifice, terror, civil war, and national wars to bring it into being. And in the austere classical traditions of the Roman Republic the bourgeois gladiators found the ideals and the art forms, the self-deceptions, that they needed to conceal from themselves the bourgeois-limited content of their struggles and to keep their passion on the high plane of great historic tragedy. Similarly, at another stage of development a century earlier, Cromwell and the English people had borrowed from the Old Testament the speech, emotions, and illusions for their bourgeois revolution. When the real goal had been achieved and the bourgeois transformation of English society had been accomplished, Locke supplanted Habakkuk. "
Colour Order Systems in Art and Science

Saturday, November 08, 2003

Radio Free Flatbush
"He drives a cab by day. At night, he broadcasts Haitian gospel music somewhere between Flatbush and Crown Heights with the help of a used, low-power FM transmitter that he bought from a friend for $1500. Last Saturday night he was parked on 87.9 FM.

'My music is my ministry,' he says with a thick Creole accent and gravelly voice. 'But there's no one in Brooklyn who knows my place. Even my wife, I can'tt tell her. I am always traveling. I don't even get time to sleep.'"
Popsicle art
Fort Tryon
Van Cortlandt Park
did most of this between the bridges tour myself, but would still have been fun
Lunar Eclipse
Alfred Hitchcock mosaics

Friday, November 07, 2003

Michael Bracewell hosts Mark. E Smith: "I remembered too late that these kinds of events - 'In Conversations', bookshop appearances and so forth - are wholly bourgeois in their conception: they presuppose a complicity between the audience, subject and interviewer, in which a kind of broadsheet notion of edification is the predominant tone. And I was face to face with the man who had written Prole Art Threat in 1979 and thrown Courtney Love off a tour bus. A man who preferred to get arrested by the LAPD rather than put out his fag on a plane. Smith had lambasted all the institutions of middle-class popular culture, from open-air festivals to student vegans; and as his greatest hero was Wyndham Lewis, so he assumed his best-known public mask of being The Enemy. No matter that I'd seen The Fall maybe 20 times, no matter that I listened to the records with unceasing enthusiasm, and had written about them as vital works of contemporary art. I came across like Wilfrid Hyde-White trying to interview Eminem"
Purple frog delights scientists
Bellona Times: "Sofia Coppola wants to make herself look good the way Woody Allen used to make himself look good, but she's unable or unwilling to provide her stand-in with any distinguishing marks."
Allodox reviews overrated Lost In Translation: "Saw the movie at the crappy early 90s theater on Third Ave, around 11th St. 4 overlit floors. But the ticketseller back and forth courteous in an unforced way - pain reduction all around. On the way out, very humid, with fast thick fog passing across upper buildings and lights. Inflected greys and sharp whites. Some reflections from all the glass further uptown. Could just sort of glimpse the red-lit spire of a big gothic insurance building on Park South.

The new traffic signals and iconic pedestrian signage reduce the number of differences between Tokyo and New York."
craven realpolitik from Canada's national newspaper: "There is a larger issue. The United States has invited Canada to join in creating the so-called North American Security Perimeter. The success of that perimeter depends on close interdepartmental co-operation among the many police, intelligence, customs and immigration agencies in both countries."
Multi-intelligence matters: "Mr. Easter told reporters yesterday he did not know how the Americans obtained the lease, but said it did not come from the RCMP, and might have been obtained by foreign intelligence agencies.
'That particular document, there are multi-intelligence agencies involved in these matters,' he said.
'Just because it happens to be a lease does not necessarily mean it came from Canadian sources,' he said. 'Of course, I'm worried about it. I'm always concerned about illegal matters.'"
Diplomacy: "'I don't know if diplomacy blinds them to the obvious,' said Mr. McTeague. 'But it's pretty clear when a person is busted up and kept in those kind of conditions and he's trying to signal to you with three of his tormentors who happen to be around him, that there is something wrong.'"
The Soft Power Argument: "Sampson suggested that the Canadian government decided to take a soft approach to his case so as not to anger officials in Riyadh.
'I'm not convinced the soft power argument has worked in my case or other cases,' he said. 'If the Canadian government wanted to effect an earlier release, they have to be prepared to much more publicly declaim the government's concerns.'
'Because of the political clout that Saudi Arabia supposedly has, people were hiding behind the soft-power argument to do nothing.'
Saudi Arabia has rejected a formal Canadian request for an investigation into Sampson's imprisonment. They insist the torture did not happen and that Sampson is still guilty of the bombing."
NATIONAL POST: "Reporters asked Bill Graham, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, how this document came to be in the possession of the FBI, but he had nothing to offer but his own confusion.
'If I could answer that question, I wouldn't be Foreign Minister, I'd be the divine. There are many things that are unanswerable,' he replied."
Democracy Now! | Canadian Man Deported by U.S. Details Torture in Syria: "On Wednesday, officials told the Washington Post anonymously that the U.S. knowingly sends suspects abroad to be tortured. One official said 'The temptation is to have these folks in other hands because they have different standards,' while another said, 'Someone might be able to get information we can't from detainees.'"
Continues clear and cold here. The thick frost via the brushwork of Denzil Best w/George Shearing ca. 1951(thank you Rod) doesn't begin to budge before full sun hits it early afternoon.
A walk with Gilbert White (PDF)