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Jun. 7th, 2006 @ 11:47 pm Death to all off-the-rack "charming" rogues with crappy fake accents
Current Location: home
Current Mood: Gambit is teh lame
Current Music: Yoshimoto "Du What U Du (Trentemoller remix)"
Tags: ,
Someone on another forum posted that what the new X-Men movie needed was "more Gambit."

Now, I have yet to see the new X-Men movie, but I know he's a dirty, dirty liar because nothing ever needs more Gambit.

I wished a vicious, nasty, oozing pox on said poster, and reminded him that Gambit is an embarrassing stain on the X-franchise, and that he deserves to go to the special hell where they keep Scrappy-Doo, Jar Jar Binks, and Itchy and Scratchy's friend Poochie.
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Jun. 4th, 2006 @ 04:55 pm The best laid plans of snakes and planes
Current Location: home
Current Mood: blahblah
Current Music: Tabla Beat Science "Palmistry"
Tags: , ,
This is clearly a guerilla marketing stunt for a certain movie.

Of course, if it had been a white snake, I don't think anyone would have mentioned its race.

Thanks to bleach_bacon for the link.
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Jun. 4th, 2006 @ 12:29 am I know I told you I'd be true
Current Location: home
Current Mood: happyhappy
Current Music: LL Cool J "Big Ole Butt"
Tags: , ,
I love putting my music on shuffle, just because of weird little transitions from completely dissimilar songs. Case in point: I just went from listening to a track from Autechre's Confield into LL Cool J "Big Ole Butt"

I love life.
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Jun. 3rd, 2006 @ 11:44 pm Is it just me getting this?
Current Location: home
Current Mood: annoyedannoyed
Current Music: Gang Starr "You Know My Steez"
Tags: ,
I am really rapidly losing patience with the satellite TV spam in my LJ comments. Is this happening to anyone else?
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Jun. 1st, 2006 @ 10:17 pm Battle of the Sexy Anarchist Network Stars
Current Location: home
Current Mood: curiousfanboyish
Current Music: Spank Rock (feat. Amanda Blank) "Bump"
I recently realized that two of my favorite pop culture icons bear a lot of similarities to each other.

* One is animated who debuted in 1991, and one's a comic book character who debuted in 1994, but both the animated series and the comic series have devoted cult followings and are known for their experimental narrative structures and bizarre content.

* Both characters are gun-toting, kung fu kicking, radical anarchist combat machines whose ability and willingness to savagely fuck people up by the dozen is staggering.

* Both have predilictions for kinky sex and fetish gear, and the sex appeal of both characters is directly related to their killing prowess.

* However, the "heroism" of both characters is seriously brought into question in the course of their respective stories. Attention is paid to the huge body counts they leave in their wakes, as well as the somewhat nebulous nature of the ideologies that supposedly justify the things they do.


So, of course, the fanboy in me wants to know:

WHO WOULD WIN IN A FIGHT?



Æon Flux



vs.

King Mob


(from The Invisibles)


Bonus Question: Who would be the top if they had sex?


Discuss.
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1
May. 5th, 2006 @ 12:37 am Disease, documentation, and illegal immigration
Current Location: home
Current Mood: tiredtired
Current Music: Tom Waits "A Little Rain"
What blows my mind in the illegal immigration debate is that no one seems to mention what seems to me to be the obvious, glaring issue: epidemic disease.

One of the most important factors in dealing with an outbreak of disease is finding out it's happening as soon as is humanly possible, which allows you to take measures to contain the spread of the disease and makes it easier to track the outbreak to its source. For this to work, you want people to go to the doctor as soon as they start getting sick, so reports of the illness get into the system as close to the beginning of the outbreak as possible. You want to start collecting data as soon as possible, and this means you need people to be willing to come forward and talk to a medical professional about their symptoms.

Now, look at illegal immigration in the US. You're talking about tens of millions of people living in crowded urban tenements and squalid rural shantytowns. They are poor, they often lack basic sanitation and health care, and they often work in close proximity with livestock, almost by definition in places of employment which are lax in enforcing workplace safety and health regulations.

If there is any community in the US where a really nasty virus could breed, they've got to be at the top of the list, and holy living fuck, people, you do not want your prime candidates for disease outbreaks to have any reason at all, ever, to want to avoid going into the hospital if and when they start getting sick.

The chances of this actually happening are, arguably, pretty slim, but there are already so many good reasons not to make immigration policy any more punitive than it already is, and so few reasons to believe those punitive measures would even work (not even going into the humanitarian issues here), why even screw around with this?

It's a subset of the larger blind spot that too many people have on this issue. As long as the wealth disparity between the US and Mexico (and, increasingly, the disparity between the US and points south of Mexico) is as sharp as it is, people will move north. It's like water seeking its own level. Poor people will go where the money is, and you can build all the walls and hire all the guards you want, but it's going to happen. Millions of people are going to cross the border whether we want them to or not*, and there is no way to stop them or even slow them down. Anyone who tells you otherwise is a fool or a liar.

The question is not "Do we want to stop illegal immigration or not?" but rather "Do we want the immigrants who come here to be documented or not?" Right now, by giving them reasons to avoid the authorities, by refusing to process them through the usual ports of entry and forcing them to use smuggling networks and wilderness crossings, we are effectively deciding that we don't want them to be documented, and we're succeeding beyond our wildest expectations on that count. Our country is home to anywhere between 12 and 20 million people** about whom we know virtually nothing, and as a result of our willful ignorance we're unable to effectively regulate anything that goes on concerning them.

* And I would argue that we do want them to come here, but I would so argue in another post.

** This is a variation in the estimates of the size of the illegal immigrant population roughly equivalent to the population of New York City. Like I said, about whom we know virtually nothing.
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Apr. 28th, 2006 @ 06:37 pm Dream: Ronald Reagan
Current Mood: calmcalm
Current Music: Coil "Chaostrophy"
The other night, I dreamt I was reading a big picture book. It had a photo of Ronald Reagan in an art museum, dressed like Col. Sanders in a white suit with a black bow tie, and pointing at a big painting.

The caption said: "In 1986, the President of the United States was RONALD REAGAN."

Then Reagan looked at me and smiled that big weird Reagan smile, and waved at me to come inside the museum. The frame of the photograph expanded until I could step inside, and all of a sudden there were people with me, following Reagan through a museum, past big paintings and dinosaur bones.

Eventually, we walked out through a set of French doors onto the grass, and we were standing near the creek at Recreation Plantation, former site of Burning Flipside.

There were a whole bunch of IKEA-looking computer desks scattered around the lawn, complete with old computers from 1986 with tiny little green monochromatic monitors full of blocky text. There were thick blue cables connecting the computers together and running off out of site in all directions, and a skunk was running around chewing through the cables.

Reagan told us the computers were for us, and that we needed to use them. We tried to explain that they were old and outdated, and that a skunk had chewed through all the cables, but he wouldn't listen.
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Apr. 26th, 2006 @ 12:57 am The Filthy Monkey Plans Anew
Current Location: home
Current Mood: chipperchipper
Current Music: DJ Spooky "The Terran Invasion of Alpha Centauri Year 2794"
So, when I heard that Warren Ellis was starting yet another web forum (this one apparently devoted to futurist theory) and recycling the name Die Puny Humans for it, of course I signed up for it, at the same time that I kicked myself for reflexively jumping on the Ellis bandwagon when it came jingling around the corner like I always do. I nearly regretted it when I went to the new site and was immediately confronted with some bullshit about how only sooper-secret special people can post there.

However, I was rewarded by this great post by Josh Ellis (no apparent relation to Warren), which launches the Grim Meathook Future thread on the new DPH forum. I'm reposting it here, and no, I'm not putting it behind a cut.

“What are the fictions of “the long now” (what is the relationship of the long now and the long tail — does abundance and narrowcast-culture lead to the feeling of a thousand million divergent futures - the future got wide, again)”

I think the problem is that the future, maybe for the first time since WWII, lies on the far side of an event horizon for us, because there are so many futures possible. There’s the wetware future, the hardware future, the transhumanist future, the post-rationalist (aka fundamentalist) future.

And then there’s the future where everything just sort of keeps going on the way it has, with incremental changes, and technology is no longer the deciding factor in things. You don’t need high tech to change the world; you need Semtex and guns that were designed by a Russian soldier fifty-odd years ago.

Meanwhile, most of the people with any genuine opportunity or ability to effect global change are too busy patting each other on the back at conventions and blue-skying goofy social networking tools that are essentially useless to 95% of the world’s population, who live within fifteen feet of everyone they’ve ever known and have no need to track their fuck buddies with GPS systems. (This, by the way, includes most Americans, quite honestly.)

You can’t blame them for this, because it’s fun and it’s a great way to travel and get paid, but it doesn’t actually help solve any real problems, except the problem of media theory grad students, which the rest of the world isn’t really interested in solving.

Feeding poor people is useful tech, but it’s not very sexy and it won’t get you on the cover of Wired. Talk about it too much and you sound like an earnest hippie. So nobody wants to do that.

They want to make cell phones that can scan your personal measurements and send them real-time to potential sex partners. Because, you know, the fucking Japanese teenagers love it, and Japanese teenagers are clearly the smartest people on the planet.

The upshot of all of this is that the Future gets divided; the cute, insulated future that Joi Ito and Cory Doctorow and you and I inhabit, and the grim meathook future that most of the world is facing, in which they watch their squats and under-developed fields get turned into a giant game of Counterstrike between crazy faith-ridden jihadist motherfuckers and crazy faith-ridden American redneck motherfuckers, each doing their best to turn the entire world into one type of fascist nightmare or another.

Of course, nobody really wants to talk about that future, because it’s depressing and not fun and doesn’t have Fischerspooner doing the soundtrack. So everybody pretends they don’t know what the future holds, when the unfortunate fact is that — unless we start paying very serious attention — it holds what the past holds: a great deal of extreme boredom punctuated by occasional horror and the odd moment of grace."
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Apr. 21st, 2006 @ 11:10 pm This picture makes me happy
Current Location: home
Current Mood: happyhappy
Current Music: Mark Farina _San Francisco Sessions, vol. 1
Tags: ,
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Apr. 21st, 2006 @ 11:19 am (no subject)
Current Location: home
Current Mood: hopefulhopeful
Current Music: Miles Davis "Miles Runs the Voodoo Down"
Tags: ,
I really, really want the job I interviewed for this morning.

*crosses fingers*
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Apr. 21st, 2006 @ 01:22 am (no subject)
Current Location: home
Current Mood: depresseddepressed
Current Music: Pere Ubu "Ubu Dance Party"
As you may know, James Risen and Eric Lichtblau recently won Pulitzers for exposing the Bush Administration's illegal NSA wiretapping scheme.

William Bennett, author of the Book of Virtues, former Reagan and Bush (George HW) Administration Cabinet official, and Republican pundit and talk show host, has recently called for their arrest for releasing this information "against the wishes of the president, against the request of the president and others, that they not release it"

You can hear an mp3 of it here.

He also goes off on those who blew the whistle on the CIA "black sites" where people were sent to be tortured, noting bizarrely that it embarassed our allies who had been so gracious in allowing us to torture people on their soil.

I don't even know where to put that last bit in my head, frankly.

Yes, we're at the point where well-connected members of the party which controls all three branches of government wants to jail reporters who have the temerity to report on the illegal things the government is doing, and nobody bats an eyelash.
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Apr. 5th, 2006 @ 06:03 am Nixon was the first President. Conversation is in your head. Blood is the only technology.
Current Location: home
Current Mood: sicksick
Current Music: DJ Shadow feat. Keak the Sneak and Turf Talk "3 Freaks"
Tags: , ,


Stolen from Warren Ellis.

In other news, I think I'm getting sick. =(
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Apr. 4th, 2006 @ 03:44 pm Blog Roundup
Current Location: home
Current Mood: cheerfulcheerful
Current Music: Magic Aum Gigi "Love Potion 26"
Tags: , ,
Constructing a Foundation for 'Net-Zero' Buildings

One of the more encouraging aspects of green technology development is the fact that big corporations with deep pockets, operating on a large scale, have every reason to start thinking green, since energy inefficiency costs them money, and the means to make something happen. Apparently, some big players in commercial construction technologies are forming an alliance to develop zero-net-energy, carbon-neutral commercial buildings. Huge.

(via WorldChanging)

*****

From an article on we make money not art about Germany legalizing Segways on public sidewalks, we have these nifty pictures of German police riding Segways:




(via we make money not art)

*****

Manuel DeLanda - "Deleuze and the Use of Genetic Algorithms in Architecture"

Suffice it to say it kills me that this lecture is happening in LA while I'm in Mexico. It looks like they do a live webcast of their lectures, but they don't seem to archive them. Oh, well.

At least I will get to see this before it's over.



Whoever Reads Bourgeois Newspapers Becomes Blind and Deaf: Away with These Stultifying Bandages!, John Heartfield, 1930

(via art.blogging.la)

*****

The Red Ferret Journal has put up all kinds of neat stuff since the last time I looked at it:



This phone can record your conversations directly onto a CD. One CD apparently stores 15,000 calls. Neat-O. Story here. But that kind of pales in comparison to this...



... which is apparently a spa-massager helmet. No, really. You wear it on your head and it pummels you with water until you feel better. Story here, MDMA not included.

(via Red Ferret)

*****

Speaking of MDMA, I'm not even sure how to process this one:

"Doctors from London University have revealed details of what they believe is the largest amount of ecstasy ever consumed by a single person. Consultants from the addiction centre at St George's Medical School, London, have published a case report of a British man estimated to have taken around 40,000 pills of MDMA, the active ingredient in ecstasy, over nine years. The heaviest previous lifetime intake on record is 2,000 pills.

Though the man, who is now 37, stopped taking the drug seven years ago, he still suffers from severe physical and mental health side-effects, including extreme memory problems, paranoia, hallucinations and depression. He also suffers from painful muscle rigidity around his neck and jaw which often prevents him from opening his mouth. The doctors believe many of these symptoms may be permanent.

The man, known as Mr A in the report in the scientific journal Psychosomatics, started using ecstasy at 21. For the first two years his use was an average of five pills per weekend. Gradually this escalated until he was taking around three and a half pills a day. At the peak, the man was taking an estimated 25 pills every day for four years. After several severe collapses at parties, Mr A decided to stop taking ecstasy. For several months, he still felt he was under the influence of the drug, despite being bedridden."
(emphases mine, full story here)

All I can really say there is Ho. Ly. Shit. Just say no to drugs, kiddies, where "drugs" = completely marinating yourself in ecstasy for nearly a decade.

The part that completely slays me is "After several severe collapses at parties, Mr A decided to stop taking ecstasy." Can you imagine the scene at the last party he collapsed at, the one that turned him around?

"It's OK, everybody loves you, dude, we just want to know if you're all right."
"What ... what year is it?"
"Hmm... maybe you should slow down. Do you maybe need some water? I've got gum. You want gum, maybe? Maybe get some air?"


(from the Guardian, via Boing Boing)

*****

Finally, Lawrence Lessig had this to say about the US, Japan, South America, and intellectual property law:

"In the late 1990s, I travelled a bunch to South America to talk about cyberspace. In conference after conference, I listened to South Americans describe how they were waiting for the government to enact rules so they could begin to develop business in cyberspace. That reaction puzzled me, an American. As I explained to those who would listen, in America, business wasn't waiting for the government to "clarify" rules. It was simply building business in cyberspace without any support from government.

Yet as I listened to the Japanese describe the stuff they were doing with content in cyberspace, I realized we (America) had become South America. One presentation in particular described an extraordinary database the NII had constructed to discover relevance in linked databases, and drive traffic across a database of texts. I was astonished by the demonstration, and thought to myself that we could never build something like this in the U.S., at least until cases like the Google Book Search case was resolved.

And bingo â?” the moment of recognition. We are now, as the South Americans in the 1990s, waiting for the government to clarify the rules. Investment is too uncertain; the liability too unclear. We thus wait, and fall further behind nations such as Japan, where the IP (as in copyright) bar is not so keen to stifle IP (as in the goose that ...)."


(via Lessig Blog, obviously)
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Apr. 4th, 2006 @ 01:15 pm (no subject)
Current Location: home
Current Mood: curiouscurious
Current Music: The Gyuto Multiphonic Choir "Guhyasamaja Tantra"
Tags: ,
When does an adventure officially become a misadventure?
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Apr. 2nd, 2006 @ 11:43 pm The iTunes Oracle
Current Music: Madlib "Slim's Return"
Stolen from kyooverse while taking a break from job applications.

----------
Instructions: Set your iTunes to shuffle. Ask the following questions aloud one at a time, pressing play once after each question. Use the song titles as the answers to the questions. NO CHEATING.
----------

Q) How does the world see you?
A) Sinéad O'Connor "I Want Your (Hands on Me)" (I swear, I didn't cheat)

Q) Will I have a happy life?
A) Ladytron "Another Breakfast With You"

Q) What do my friends really think of me?
A) Roger Eno "Voices"

Q) Do people secretly lust after me?
A) Buck 65 "Riverbed, pt 5"

Q) How can I make myself happy?
A) The Orb "Spanish Castles in Space"

Q) What should I do with my life?
A) The Stooges "Down on the Street"

Q) Will I ever have children?
A) Rhythm Dhol Bass "Old Skool Boliyan"

Q) What is some good advice for me?
A) Broadcast "Hawk"

Q) How will I be remembered?
A) dj /Rupture Minesweeper Suite, track 8

Q) What is my signature song?
A) David Bowie "What in the World"

Q) What do I think my current theme song is?
A) A Tribe Called Quest "Go Ahead in the Rain"

Q) What does everyone else think my current theme song is?
A) Mylo "Paris Four Hundred"

Q) What song will play at my funeral?
A) prefuse 73 "Radio Attack"

Q) What type of "people" do I like?
A) Nipponianippon "Valley of the Wind"

Q) What is my day going to be like?
A) Madlib "Slim's Return"

-----------------------------------------

I promise I will return to more regular posting soon.
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Mar. 24th, 2006 @ 12:27 am His phones are standing by...
Current Mood: amusedamused


Stolen from arien
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Feb. 12th, 2006 @ 06:48 pm Best. Picture. Ever.
Current Mood: amusedamused
Current Music: Immortal Technique "Dance with the Devil"
Tags: ,
Stolen from BoingBoing

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Feb. 4th, 2006 @ 12:14 am "Yes," said Brown Snuggly Bear, "but thank goodness it isn't squamous."
Current Mood: amusedamused
Tags: , ,
I have shamelessly stolen this from aziraphale:

Tales of the Plush Cthulhu

Here is the question it raises for me: At what point, exactly, did Cthulhu references in the context of parody or comedy begin to outnumber ones in actual horror? When did Cthulhu become primarily a geek comedy reference point and only secondarily a sanity-blasting horror from beyond space and time?
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Jan. 31st, 2006 @ 08:28 pm Day of Lists
Current Mood: blahblah
Current Music: Pompey "Semaphore and Basin"
In addition to being the day when the Supreme Court went straight to hell in a handbasket, it is also the day that the Coachella lineup and the Oscar nominations were announced.

lists and commentary behind cutCollapse )
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Jan. 31st, 2006 @ 07:16 pm Scalito
Current Mood: crankycranky
Current Music: Pizzicato Five "Go Go Dancer"
I don't know what to say about the Alito confirmation that shouldn't already be obvious to anyone with two brain cells to rub together.

I mean, how do you start talking about something like this? I could go the "The Democratic Party is a useless, shambling parody of a political party" route, but, I mean... duh. I could rail about how obvious it is that Alito's an ultraconservative of the sort that you'd swear that conservative thinktanks had been growing him in a lab for the past few decades, programming him with single-minded focus on taking their agenda to the Supreme Court, but, again, duh.

Look, here's the problem in a nutshell. Alito has every intention of doing away with abortion rights, and perhaps more frighteningly, doing away with every restriction on executive power he can find. These things couldn't be more obvious if he had a glowing neon sign over his head, but no one had the power to stop him. Anywhere.

The confirmation hearings were a sham because anyone who's going to make it to the point where he's sitting behind that desk is going to know how to keep his cool and give evasive non-answers to anything the committee throws at him. No matter how much Joe Biden hollered at him, he wasn't going to crack and say anything that they could use as a justification for shooting him down. The whole expectation that Senators place more emphasis on the hearings and not prior decisions or documents from his early career, coupled with the Gang of 14 filibuster deal, pretty much killed any possible opposition before it started. The Democrats didn't have the votes to do anything but filibuster, and agreed not to do that unless the candidate was an extremist, so all the Republicans had to do was orchestrate a little theatrical presentation for the committee that presented him as a moderate and it was over.

Alito's confirmation was basically a foregone conclusion once they realized they could nominate a far right justice without anyone being able to stop them. How did we get to that point? It's pretty basic: they have a machine, and we don't. They've been working for this for decades, while we've been twiddling our thumbs and watching our power erode. They've used their incredible media leverage to encourage the rightward tilt in the electorate. When the vacancy came up, they were ready to go to war and we weren't anywhere near it.

How do we get out? I don't know. We don't really have a few spare decades to catch up, and there aren't really any signs that anyone's trying to catch up at all. The Democratic Party is basically engaged in a craven game of trying to preserve their own cushy jobs and institutional status by playing nice and sliding to the right, but there's no other party apparatus to work with. None of the small independent parties have anything resembling a political organization that can win elections, and any time they get close to developing on, they're stomped on by the Big Two.

Blah. Hate. Frustration.
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Jan. 30th, 2006 @ 02:40 am Episode III: The Backstroke of the West
Current Mood: amusedamused
Tags: , ,
Someone in China bought a bootleg DVD of Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, dubbed in Chinese and subtitled with the English translations of the Chinese translations of the English originals.











Perhaps unsurprisingly, the translated dialogue is slightly less awkward than the original.

Full post here.
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Jan. 28th, 2006 @ 12:04 am (no subject)
Current Mood: highhigh
Current Music: Broadcast "You Can Fall"
I was going to make a serious political post, but I'm kind of high so instead you're getting a completely random series of updates, with boldface accents on the famous and not-so-famous names in the somewhat annoying manner of Page Six:

* About 10:00pm last night (January 26), I was looking at Pitchfork posts on my RSS reader, and I saw that Blixa Bargeld and Jarboe were going on tour together. I opened the story to see if the tour was coming to San Diego, and sure enough, they were opening the tour with a show at the Casbah ... on the 26th. I threw on some clothes, called ,tinkerbell_mk to have her meet me down there, and raced down there. We got there towards the beginning of Blixa's set, which was really cool. He played with looped vocals and told strange stories while getting drunk on gin and tonic. Perfect. We didn't stay too long into Jarboe's set, since it was fucking terrible. I was never a huge huge Swans fan to begin with, but still, bleh.

* I'm so fucking done with Frank Miller. Yes, OK, OK, Dark Knight Returns, Year One and his Daredevil run deserve their places in the comic hierarchy because of their massive impact on the medium and blah blah blah, but I've never had much regard for Sin City or any of his more recent work. I was fine with understanding that his work was important to comics but wasn't really to my taste, and leaving it at that.

But every time I read about him these days, he's just offensive and/or embarassing. First we had the infamous "ass shot" script, which was just stupid and juvenile. But this interview that zenith linked to elsewhere is just fucked up:

"Look at the world. Almost half my country equates flushing a Koran down a toilet with sawing the head off an innocent contractor, or using airplanes those barbarians could never have invented to slaughter thousands of my neighbors. Much of Europe shrugs off the disgusting murder of director Theo Van Gogh. And Paris Hilton and Michael Jackson's noseless face get the headlines. You can't make this stuff up."

Translation: The Muslims are coming! The bloodthirsty Muslims, who are too barbaric to understand anything beyond simple stone tools! And I'm the only one who cares, because all the liberals are weak, effeminate couch potatoes unwilling to take hard, two-fisted vengeance to these enemies of civilization!

He is basically everything embarassing about comics and everything offensive about his particular strain of American conservativism in concentrated form. He's a racist, misogynist little troll who likes to wallow in violent fantasies because he seems to have no understanding of or empathy for the rest of humanity.

Also, he's an overrated hack who hasn't done anything decent since 1987, and the appeal of his earlier stuff wears thin after a while.

Oh, and today (the 27th) was his birthday. He's 49. Happy Birthday, you worthless fuck!

* Finally saw this week's Project Runway! OK, I think Zulema intentionally stole Nick's model to throw him off his game because she knew he's the best designer left and was delusional enough to think she was good enough to make the Final Three. I also thought Andraé should have won - his dress was really stunning. However, I like Daniel V. quite a bit, and Nick's getting his model back, so all is well.
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Jan. 23rd, 2006 @ 10:48 pm Sundance
Current Mood: headachey
Tags:
Film geeks might want to know that GreenCine Daily has a roundup of reviews from Sundance posted here.
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Jan. 23rd, 2006 @ 05:05 pm Let's get ourselves some stakes and torches, there's a witch-burning a-comin'
Current Mood: blankblank
From the NYT coverage of the big annual anti-abortion rally in DC:

Nelly Gray, the founder and president of March for Life, the rally organizers, said overturning Roe was the theme for the rally and, in fiery tone, predicted that the United States would hold the equivalent of Nuremburg trials for "feminist abortionists."

"Roe v. Wade has brutalized our country," she said. "The feminine abortionists, look at the evil they are doing. From that will come an accountability."


Well, it's good to know what's next on the agenda after abortion is outlawed.

Full article here, registration required.
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Jan. 21st, 2006 @ 02:55 pm (no subject)
Current Mood: amusedamused
Current Music: yeah yeah yeahs "maps"
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Jan. 21st, 2006 @ 01:07 pm Finally, the goddamn umbrellas
Current Mood: amusedamused
Current Music: lady sov "fiddle with the volume"
This was always my favorite piece of tech from Blade Runner: the umbrellas with the illuminated shafts.

Because, you know, when it's raining, it's often dark, too. It seemed so simple and elegant that I wondered why no one made one in real life. Certainly easier than the flying cars or the replicants, no?
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Jan. 20th, 2006 @ 11:40 pm Hey, it's that time of year again!
Current Mood: sneezy
What time is it, boys and girls?

Why, it's Coachella Speculation Time!

The dates have been announced as April 29th and 30th, so of course everyone's running around tha intarwebs looking for conspicuous holes in people's tour schedules that would dump them in Southern California the last weekend in April.

So far, the only really confirmed confirmed people I've heard of were Depeche Mode (filling the big 80s synth legend slot) and Lady Sovereign, neither of which is a huge surprise.

Oh, and Paul Oakenfold. God, the big tent is such an afterthought these days.

Supposedly, the ninjatune.net website used to have a listing for Coldcut appearing at Coachella this year, and someone screencapped it, but it's not up now.

And just to add some baseless speculation to the mix, in their interview with Re:Up, the guys from Boards of Canada talk about how they've been preparing a live show for the past three years and they're just about ready to debut it, and they get a lot of offers from festivals but they would want to go somewhere where they could have a more relaxed and intimate environment than most festivals. I know, they're rumored every year, but I'm just sayin'...

----------

In case anyone cares, my new userpic is Cha Cha. She's the friendly new cartoon spokesperson for Shanghai's police internet surveillance division, the totally adorable face of Orwellian political oppression. Thanks to BoingBoing for the link.
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Jan. 16th, 2006 @ 08:25 pm Personal, political, reality TV
Current Mood: crazycrazy
It's wonderful to be back in California, but I think I'm still recovering from the back-to-back stresses of travel and the general debauchery of khayman and leeshers's wedding weekend.

Of course, tinkerbell_mk had more stress than I did and is doing more stuff than I am, so I just might be making excuses for being a lazy ass.

In any case, I am thrilled to have been a part of the happy couple's nuptial celebration. If ever there were two people who were made to be together, it's them. I love them both more than I can realistically express here in a blog entry.

************

Is it just me, or does it seem like there's been a lot of political upheaval in the past year and a half or so? Specifically, upheaval of the passing-of-the-torch variety. Whole cliques of established leaders falling by the wayside, major seismic shifts and all that.

In the US, there's the whole DeLay-Abramoff thing. In the UK, we have the rise of David Cameron and the subsequent fall of Charles Kennedy. There was the election mess in Germany, the changing of the guard with the BJP leadership in India, the Syria-Lebanon stuff, all the Chirac/de Villepin/Sarko drama in France, etc etc etc.

Israel and Palestine, obviously, are the best example: Peretz knocks Peres out of control of Labor, Sharon forms Kadima, then Sharon is taken out of the picture. Meanwhile, of course, Hamas mounts a serious challenge for leadership in Palestine.

Is there, like, something in the water? Or the air? Some kind of astrological happening in some house or other governing political affairs? Mind-control rays? What is going on?

************

I am becoming addicted to Project Runway. There's a marathon on. I love Diana Eng so so so much. She's a fashion nerd and I want to take her home and lock her in my basement and make her make clothes for me.

In other TV-related news, Season 2 of Venture Brothers seems to have been delayed until mid-June, which has pushed the DVD date back to May (hey, my birthday's in May....hint hint), which makes me somewhat unhappy.
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Jan. 13th, 2006 @ 10:34 pm (no subject)
Current Mood: happyhappy
From allegedly

1. Grab the nearest book.
2. Open the book to page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the text of the sentence in your journal along with these instructions.
5. Don't search around and look for the coolest book you can find. Do what's actually next to you.

Here's mine:

"An observer who looks only at one particle cannot predict whether it will be spinning to the right or left."

Very happy to have spent the day today with good friends. Happy.
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Jan. 12th, 2006 @ 07:12 pm (no subject)
Current Mood: tiredtired
Ran to get on plane at 5:45AM for a 45 minute flight from Baton Rouge to Houston.

Fell asleep the instant I buckled my seat belt.

Woke up confused three hours later, plane on the ground, presumably in Houston, right?

Except, well, not.

We were still on the fucking tarmac in Baton Rouge.

There was fog. The flight was delayed for three hours because of fog. They didn't let anyone on or off the plane.

I'm so glad I was asleep, because if I had had to be awake for three hours of "Hello, this is your captain speaking. It's, uhh, still foggy, but they say we'll be taking off any minute," I would have gone batshit. Still, fucking annoying.

Obviously, connecting flights were missed, lots of standing by in Bush International Airport, astronaut ice cream, etc.

Feeling much better being home.
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Jan. 7th, 2006 @ 07:53 pm Dr. Hoffman
Current Mood: tiredtired
There's an article about Albert Hoffman in the New York Times today. You might have to register or go to BugMeNot to read it.

Apparently, his hundredth birthday is on Wednesday. To be honest, I had no idea he was still alive.
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Jan. 2nd, 2006 @ 12:07 pm Mr Pibb + Red Vines = Crazy Delicious
Current Mood: SNACK ATTACK, MOTHERFUCKER!
Oh, and I know most of you have probably seen this already, seeing as how it's been everywhere, but I keep forgetting to post it. I know it's so last week, but here it is:

"Lazy Sunday," aka "The Chronic of Narnia"
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Jan. 2nd, 2006 @ 09:49 am Five hundred sixty five thousand however many minutes, and stuff
Current Mood: lovedloved
2005 was a big year for me. Lots of transitions, lots of things in flux. I turned 30. I lost my job. My grandfather passed away. I travelled a lot.

This was definitely a year that I wouldn't have been able to make it through without ridiculous, absurd, totally flabbergasting amounts of love and support from the amazing people I have in my life. I feel so blessed, so loved. One of the things that makes me feel more comfortable about turning 30 is knowing that, even if I've accomplished nothing much in my life, at least I've had enough sense to find the right people to spend my life with. I must have done something right to be surrounded by so much love.

So, thank you thank you thank you all for being in my life in 2005. I hope to be able to show you how much I appreciate it in 2006.
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Dec. 25th, 2005 @ 02:45 am (no subject)
Current Mood: tiredtired
Current Music: Kid 606 "Damn I'm Hard"
Merry Christmas to all for whom it applies.
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Dec. 22nd, 2005 @ 11:51 am nip/tuck deja vu
Current Mood: busybusy
Tags: ,
I'm a little disappointed in the nip/tuck season finale.

Read more...Collapse )
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Dec. 19th, 2005 @ 06:03 pm Glutton for punishment
Current Mood: weirdweird
We signed up for more of this madness. We will be in Baton Rouge until Jan 8. My extension paperwork didn't make it over to Staff Sheltering, and it's only because I stopped by to make sure I still had my room assignment that I'm not homeless for the night, or, more accurately, that tink and I don't have a new roommate it would be impossible to get rid of.

If I say that today's visits included cockroaches and yards flooded with raw sewage, it will sound a lot more dramatic than it really was. More dramatic, as usual, is the meatgrinder of office politics and complex social relationships, but, hey, that's people for you.
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Dec. 5th, 2005 @ 06:08 pm Great essay on the French riots on ZNet
Current Mood: tiredtired
Tags: , , ,
"This begs the questions then of what else differentiates France from the US, since America is presented as the model to follow for creating social peace and employment. The US does have more work. But, again, this is as much rooted in the dollar as a global reserve currency and its expansionary monetary policy and military Keynesianism than its just celebrated low wages and no benefits for poor workers. It must also be remembered the US merely locks up 2 million of its urban youth in prisons as a means of social control. Recent events in New Orleans with Hurricane Katrina should also remind us that among America's African American poor not already locked up, and in the South sometimes impressed into work gangs, all is not so peaceful on the plantation as the neoliberal press declares."

Go read it here.
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Dec. 2nd, 2005 @ 06:39 pm progress
Current Mood: annoyedannoyed
So, South Africa, which decided that black people were, in fact, people, less than 20 years ago, has legalized gay marriage.

The United States, which has been flapping its gums for over 200 years about life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness... not so much.
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Nov. 28th, 2005 @ 08:21 pm here we go again
Current Mood: busybusy
Just got the call from our local Red Cross chapter a few hours ago: tinkerbell_mk and I are being re-deployed to Baton Rouge on Wednesday. We have a meeting in SD tomorrow morning, which means we're driving down tonight since I'm typing this in the Bay Area tonight. Must pack.

So... Louisiana, round two. Wish us luck.

I know I haven't even told all you loyal readers out there in blogland my stories from the first trip, but I swear I will drop a massive crapload of updates here some time in the next month or so.
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Nov. 27th, 2005 @ 11:37 pm The spirit of the season
In case anyone reading this should have the desire to buy me something this holiday season, or if they should for whatever reason feel socially obligated to do so, I am posting my Amazon.com wish list here in case said person is stuck for ideas.
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Nov. 22nd, 2005 @ 10:51 am I'm not 100% sure this is worksafe...
Current Mood: tiredtired
Tags: ,
... but I'm not posting it behind a cut.

Some enterprising person (nezchan) has created a Flying Spaghetti Monster crocheted dildo cozy.



More pictures here. Thanks to BoingBoing for the link.

Oh, also, I'm back from Louisiana.
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Oct. 29th, 2005 @ 01:49 am An interview with Aquaman
Current Mood: amusedamused
Tags: , ,
Aquaman: Why the Hate?

An excerpt:

BUZZ: You also relocated the League to Detroit, Michigan. Why Detroit?

AQUAMAN: Well, one of the members, Hank Heywood, was based out of Detroit at the time and his fath—

BUZZ: Can you support co-founder Green Lantern’s claim that you moved it to Detroit out of personal motives, to be closer to the Great Lakes?

AQUAMAN: What— no! That’s an outright lie! Who told you that?

BUZZ: Confirm or deny that you relocated to a state surrounded by lakes for the sole possibility that you’d have more water-related cases?

AQUAMAN: Deny! That’s completely false! We fought Amazo! Half the League died at his hands!

BUZZ: And how does that rest on your conscience? The fact that members of your team died simply to satisfy your own desires to fight pirates on the banks of Lake Erie? Is that when you started getting depressed?

AQUAMAN: I’m not depressed!
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Oct. 27th, 2005 @ 09:10 pm Dancing Yoda
Current Mood: amusedamused
Current Music: The Roots "Don't Say Nuthin'"
Tags: ,
Thanks to swankspike for the Dancing Yoda video.
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Oct. 27th, 2005 @ 04:04 pm The Red Cross called!
Current Mood: excitedexcited
Current Music: St. Germain "Rose Rouge"
tinkerbell_mk just called to tell me the Red Cross just called her.

We've got an assignment! We're being deployed to New Orleans on Saturday for Hurricane Katrina disaster relief!

Tink is booking our flight now. We have to go in tomorrow morning to get the specifics, but we will either be doing shelter operations or family services case work, and for either two or three weeks.

It's nice to be doing something productive with my life.
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Oct. 22nd, 2005 @ 04:21 pm I love the nightlife, I love to boogie
Current Music: The Inflatable Sideshow "Bone Frequency"
Tags:
Something I observed about large clubs last night:

1. The drinks are overpriced.

2. The club is always way too crowded.

1+2 = High likelihood that you will pay $10.00+ for a drink, only to turn around and immediately have somebody jostle you, spilling your drink.

Even if you don't actually end up getting jostled, you kind of have to stand all hunched over your drink, taking furtive sips in constant fear of broad-shouldered frat boys blundering into you.
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Oct. 19th, 2005 @ 09:21 pm So tell me what you don't like about yourself...
Current Mood: curiouscurious
Tags:
Is anyone watching nip/tuck this season?

Carver theories (SPOILERS)Collapse )
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Oct. 19th, 2005 @ 07:26 pm Endtroducing...
Current Mood: impressedimpressed
Current Music: high school band playing DJ Shadow, duh
Tags: ,
Want to watch a high school band play DJ Shadow?

Thanks to xaotica for the link.
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Oct. 18th, 2005 @ 11:01 pm Best Craigslist personal ad in the history of ever
Current Mood: amusedamused
Tags:
Girl wants to try strap-on - w4m - 26

I've always wanted to f a guy in the ass. I just purchased a strapon and I am dying to try it out. Tonight would be great if possible. It's about 6" long. Please don't ask to do anything else because I'm not interested in anything but strapon play. Here's the plan. I come over. I play with you, while I'm still fully clothed, to get you hard and loose. You then get in doggie and look ahead. I pull out the strapon (which I'll be wearing under my clothing when I come over.) I use it on you until we come. You can't touch me. You can't do oral on me or anything like that. We have to use the doggie position. You're not allowed to look at the strapon. You just look ahead as I use it on you. Enjoy the sensation of my rod ramming into your tight bum. What do I look like? I'm a really cute girl with hair exactly like farrah fawcett. A little bit of a 5'o clock shadow (it's actually really common in women but I mention it so you're not surprised.) I'm also kind of stocky. 5'10 170 but it's mostly muscle. Write me and I'll come over and pound your sweet ass. Remember, you can't peak at the strap-on while I use it on you.

The original ad is here.
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Oct. 16th, 2005 @ 07:07 pm Weird week or so
This has been an odd week and a half or so.

Last Saturday, tinkerbell_mk and I went up to MOCA for the opening party for Ecstasy: In and About Altered States. We got there late (only an hour before it was supposed to close), had trouble finding parking, and then had to stand on a ridiculously huge line. I was not exactly a happy camper. In fact, I was kind of a raging dickhead until we got inside, even though Sandra Collins was spinning a pretty reasonably good set while we waited.

Fortunately, the art was worth the time spent in line. Chiho Aoshima has branched out into video, and the results are fucking incredible, which is not a big surprise if you've seen her previous work.



It was also my first time seeing any of Fred Tomaselli's work in person, and two-dimensional photos really don't do it justice. Basically, he makes these huge intricate psychedelic spirals into which he incorporates actual pills, which are embedded in some kind of transparent acrylic in multiple layers. It's a really impressive marriage of subject matter and material.



We went back to LA on Tuesday to pick up tink's mom at LAX and head over to CBS Studios to be in the audience for a taping of The Price Is Right. That was surreal. First of all, it was taping right next to The Tyra Banks Show, and the crowds for both shows mingled outside while we waited. If ever two shows had different demographics, these are the two. Tyra's audience is composed mostly of very upscale, very fashion-conscious young women in their early 20s, predominantly but not exclusively black. Bob Barker's fans, on the other hand, are almost exclusively white and predominantly elderly. They come in big groups from Barstow, or Fresno, or even as far as Ohio. They wear sweatpants and matching t-shirts with the logos of their retirement homes or scanned photos of relatives who couldn't make it. Sprinkled in with these folks are a few military people in neatly pressed dress uniforms, including a group of four Marines. Just seeing the two groups lined up next to each other made my head spin.

All the pages I talked to, being attractive young entertainment industry wannabes in their slightly dorky red jackets, turned up their noses at the merest mention of The Price is Right, and would begrudgingly answer my questions only after they made it very clear that they "mostly worked for The Tyra Banks Show." They said this even if they were pretty clearly working in The Price Is Right area, like I was supposed to think they were just hanging out there to cover for someone else who was taking a pee. It was hysterical. I mean, I'm sorry, sweetie, but either way, you're still just a page. It's not like being a page for Tyra Banks is some kind of glamour job.

Anyway, we filled out little information cards, they interviewed us to see if we would be good contestants, and then they let us in. The set is pretty much identical to the set I grew up watching whenever I was home from school as a kid, all styrofoam-looking and covered with glitter in classic '70s game show style. It was like Indiana Jones and the Temple of Kitsch. The show's been on for 34 years with the same set and the same host. They're on their third announcer, and the current announcer told a story about how he came to see the show when he was a little kid and they were still on their first announcer.

So they got us all psyched up and we cheered and howled and screamed for Bob Barker when he came out. It's actually a lot of fun. The games are so dependent on audience participation, and the crowd gets really into it, plus Bob's a lot of fun. You'd have to be totally borecore to not get into the spirit of the moment. Speaking of which, it was a perfect show (all the contestants won their prizes), only the 72nd such show in the history of The Price is Right, and by the time the last contestant came up the atmosphere was totally electric. Everyone wanted the person to win, to keep the streak alive, to send everyone home happy, and to make a little contribution to the Price is Right legacy. They didn't play Plinko, which was a little disappointing, but they did play the one where the little mountain climber guy goes up the hill while they play the yodelling music, which was awesome, especially since it was the last game and we were all screaming at the little mountain climber guy to stop climbing. He did stop climbing, and we had a perfect show, and one of the Marines won the Showcase Showdown and walked away with two cars. Or, rather, in the spirit of the show, I should say two BRAND NEW CARS!

Oh, and we got Bob to say "The price is right, bitch" during one of the commercial breaks.

Wednesday was fairly uneventful. Thursday and Friday were dominated by classes at the Red Cross. Tink and I are now certified for Red Cross Shelter Operations and Emergency Family Services casework. It's kind of crazy. We are now on a list of trained volunteers who can be deployed in the event of a disaster to go run a shelter or help people get resettled. We may be deployed soon to the Katrina disaster area if everything works out OK.

Last night, we got drunk and watched Return of the Living Dead 5: Rave to the Grave on Sci-Fi Channel. I had entirely too much tequila, got sick, and passed out.

Oh, and Christ almighty, I saw some Ashlee Simpson special this weekend, and what has she done to her hair?!? And her outfits! She had this awful belt and these shoulder pads that made her look like a linebacker. Someone should beat her stylist to death with a rolling pin.
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Oct. 15th, 2005 @ 12:35 pm Wal-Mart and the Secret Service conspire against free speech
Current Mood: distresseddistressed
This story is mind-boggling.

Basically, in a nutshell, high school senior goes to Wal-Mart to get film developed for his anti-Bush photo project for his civics class on the Bill of Rights. Wal-Mart flunky tips off the local police, who in turn tip off the Secret Service. Secret Service comes to the school, takes kid's poster, questions teacher, threatens possible indictment (on what charge? who knows...)

What really blows my mind is that so many people at so many different levels seemed so unfamiliar with the First Amendment. Making posters that say "I don't like the President" is the very core of protected speech. If that many people are unaware of that, free speech becomes almost impossible to protect.

Thanks to BoingBoing for the link.
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