Friday, March 27, 2009

Getcha Turkey On

(I'll let this one speak for itself - mostly because I have no idea what it's purpose is - but it needs to be viewed by more, more, more! internet citizens)

Sunday, March 15, 2009


Funniest thing seen today at the I.T.B. (International Tourism fair in Berlin): "Official Travel Korea Year 2010-2012"
Runner Up: a skinhead with a moustache.

Side Note - I got busted trying to enter with my friend's staff pass (apparently I'm not a Ms.). Security asshat wanted my passport or i.d. ..... Fuck! I didn't even want to go; was babysitting for my friend while she worked the Malaysian booth and she asked me to bring her son by since it was the final day of the fair. Anyhow I got in.

Side-Side Note - How bout that? I'm actually updating this blog regularly!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

A Lesser Known Star

Another late follow up ... In January my attention was captured - and haunted - by the story of a man found frozen to death in a Detroit warehouse. Specifically, it was the picture that stuck with me, one of the most subtly disturbing yet realistic pieces of photography I'd seen in years.

It's one of those things that will probably re-enter my mind from time to time from here on out, but tonight was the first that I thought to follow up on it. I discovered that just a few days later, this man was identified by his brother as one Johnnie, Johnnie Redding, of River Rouge. "But he wasn't homeless. Please don't call him homeless. He always had a place to go. He was loved."

Filed under worth remembering, and not just for the fact that a game of hockey was played around his corpse. R.I.P.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Supposed Fun (and but so)

In September, David Foster Wallace hung himself in his basement in California. I briefly wrote about it, mentioning how I felt I owed it to him to finally pick up his essay collection A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again.

And but so .... that plan was delayed when I couldn't find it in Ontario, and further limited by my present location in a non-English speaking country.
At Christmas, Paraic went to visit relatives in Ireland and we all gave him book wishlists. I didn't actually expect him to come back with this book (one and only entry on my list) but am pleasantly surprised to now have it in my possession. Of the seven essays within only one is previously familiar to me - David Lynch Keeps His Head,which I wrote about as well on LJ in 2007.

So far I'm especially impressed with the titular piece in Supposedly Fun.... as it details his experience on assignment from Harper's in 1995, relating the time he spent on a Caribbean cruiseship. As someone who experienced the luxurious horror one of these floating mobile vacations has to offer in 2000 - under very awkward circumstances I'd rather not get into - I can sympathize all too well. But it's the painfully accurate way in which DFW lays it all out that really tends to impress, as it always will with someone of his skill.
I'll take the time to copy out one passage that really hit home as I read it late last night.

"Here's the thing. A vacation is a respite from unpleasantness, and since consciousness of death and decay are unpleasant, it may seem weird that Americans' ultimate fantasy vacation involves being plunked down in an enormous primordial engine of death and decay. But on a 7NC Luxury Cruise, we are skillfully enabled in the construction of various fantasies of triumph over just this death and decay. One way to "triumph" is via the rigors of self-improvement; ..... There's another way out, too, w/r/t death. Not titivation but titillation. Not hard work but hard play. The 7NC's constant activities .... makes your existence seem noncontingent. The hard-play option promises not a transcendence of death-dread so much as just drowning it out."
A.S.F.T.I.N.D.A. - p.263-264

(several of the essays I've read so far contain snippets that really jump out to the reader re:DFW's depression and eventual suicide and would likely lead the reader to label them as 'cries for help', but this does seem irrelevant when one considers that his depression was lifelong and never intentionally concealed from those around him)

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Math Rock in a new Millennium

Something to satisfy both the geek and the rockstar within:

Over at Music Machinery, Paul Lamere explains how he wrote a Python script that will analyze the waveform of a song and automatically detect whether or not the drummer used a click-track.

He then goes on to have some fun analyzing Green Day, Led Zeppelin, Britney Spears, and a friend's band. I could never explain the process myself so take a look. Oh, and speaking of music plus technology, why not process the click detector concept while enjoying Kuriman's YouTube inspired-and-created mashups on ThruYou.