==pla|\|ing lakes==

a forest called Simmer Down, wrapped in plastic
bloghome | contact: drbenway at priest dot com | blogging since Oct '01

This is Gordon Osse's blog.

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"He who does not at some time, with definite determination consent to the terribleness of life, or even exalt in it, never takes possession of the inexpressible fullness of the power of our existence." -- Rilke

        the powering,
                the Widening,
                all faces followers of

                All colors, beams of
                woven thread,
                the Skin

                alight that
                warms itself
                with life.

-- Akhenaton, "Hymn to the Sun"

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'What can I do?' - SiCKO

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Wholesale nuts, grains, fruits and spices (and more) shipped from Cottonwood AZ
(Tell them you heard about them on Gordon's blog!)


(r) = re-viewing

God Told Me To (1976, Cohen)

Whispering City (1947, Otsep)

Times and Winds (2006, Erdem)

Dirty Money (Un flic) (1972, Melville)

10th District Court (2004, Depardon)

RFK Must Die: The Assassination of Bobby Kennedy (2007, O'Sullivan)

The Furies (1950, Mann)

In a Lonely Place (1950, Ray)(r)

The Adjuster (1991, Egoyan)(r)


Mad Men
The Buddha of Suburbia
Intelligence (2006, Haddock)
Family Guy

The Power of Nightmares: The Rise of the Politics of Fear (2004, Curtis) [available for streaming/download here]

(r) = re-reading

The Blonde - Duane Swierczynski

Swansea Terminal - Robert Lewis


vaccine - v/a [hot flush]

skin diagram - david tagg

microcastle - deerhunter

saturdays=youth - m83

the serpent in quicksilver - harold budd

index of metal - fausto romitelli

Rocket to Russia - Ramones

and then one day it was over - elian

monsoon point - amelia cuni & ali gromer khan

set or performance - richard chartier

the world that was surrounded by a deep forest and warm light - ryonkt

cocoon materia aurora

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Saturday, March 29, 2003

Barney blimps
Matthew Barney's multimedia exhibit at the Guggenheim til June 11 looks worth a visit
Walk into the Guggenheim Museum and you'll enter a world transformed into a funhouse, complete with blue Astroturf, morphing images, odd sculptures, and ramps swaddled in athletic padding. The exhibit was designed by Matthew Barney and inspired by the bizarre "Cremaster" series of five films written, directed by, and featuring Barney. For an idea of the films' tenor, imagine a kind of "Fantasia" with set designs by Salvador Dali and scripts far kookier than David Lynch's.

1:00 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Friday, March 28, 2003

"...run down by the drunken taxicabs of Absolute Reality..."

Sam Smith reminds that 46 years ago this week, Allen Ginsberg's Howl was seized as obscene material

Oddly, I was just watching the episode of The Fifties (the series based on David Halberstam's book) which discusses the Beats, and thinking as I listened to Ginsberg's reading how completely relevant this landmark in American lit still is.
Moloch the vast stone of war! Moloch the stunned governments!...

Moloch whose love is endless oil and stone! Moloch whose soul is electricity and banks! Moloch whose poverty is the specter of genius! Moloch whose fate is a cloud of sexless hydrogen! Moloch whose name is the Mind!

10:41 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

metascene's biannual check-in has some good stuff

1:30 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Thursday, March 27, 2003

Author offers web-authoring handbook free on his site; bandwidth gets $15k hit

LESSON: Use P2P nets or Creative Commons -- or charge for it.

9:34 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Somehow this old XTC tune showed up in my playlist too. Not sure why.

Poor skeleton steps out,
Dressed up in bad blood,
Bad brains, bad thoughts, and others deeds.

Poor skeleton no doubt,
One of these days,
You can cast aside your human, be free.

When the cities run with blood,
And you drink our health in mud,
"All flesh be gone."
Save your dry and joyous shout,
For the day poor skeleton steps out.

Poor skeleton steps out,
Sprung from his life sentence,
Deep inside some muscle mask.

Poor skeleton devout,
Propping up truck drivers,
Filmstars, thieves or queens, your brave task.

When technology is rust,
And you write your book in dust,
"All flesh be gone."

Can't buy tickets from a tout,
For the day poor skeleton steps out.

Poor skeleton steps out,
Liberated from sex organs,
And brown, black, white skin.

Poor skeleton you lout,
Don't you think that we might,
like to have been asked to join in?

For good skeletons are we,
And we're dying to be free,
"All flesh be gone."

I will scream or sulk and pout,
Until my poor skeleton steps out.

(Better watch out, here comes bony boy.)

2:55 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

I posted the link to a rough mix and lyrics of R.E.M.'s new song about shrub at charging the canvas

Here are the lyrics:

As I raise my head to broadcast my objection
As your latest triumph draws the final straw
Who died and lifted you up to perfection?
And what silenced me is written into law.

I can't believe where circumstance has thrown me
And I turn my head away
If I look I'm not sure that I could face you.
Not again. Not today. Not today.

If hatred makes a play on me tomorrow
And forgiveness takes a back seat to revenge
There's a hurt down deep that has not been corrected
There's a voice in me that says you will not win.

And if I ignore the voice inside,
Raise a half glass to my home.
But it's there that I am most afraid,
And forgetting doesn't hold.

It doesn't hold. Now I don't believe and I never did
That two wrongs make a right.
If the world were filled with the likes of you
Then I'm putting up a fight. Putting up a fight.
Putting up a fight. Make it right. Make it right.

Now love cannot be called into question.
Forgiveness is the only hope I hold.
And love-- love will be my strongest weapon.
I do believe that I am not alone.

For this fear will not destroy me.
And the tears that have been shed
It's knowing now where I am weakest
And the voice in my head. In my head.

Then I raise my voice up higher
And I look you in the eye
And I offer love with one condition.
With conviction, tell me why.

Tell me why.
Tell me why.
Look me in the eye.
Tell me why.
Worth a listen.

2:46 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Tuesday, March 25, 2003

Huh. Sonicblue giving up the ghost

I have an old Rio with a parallel port connection stashed away somewhere, and liked the balls of their Replay digital recorder idea.

I guess this will all continue under another company, but it won't be the same.

Definitely pioneers.

2:47 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Computer Associates' new stream-lined EZ Anti-Virus looks pretty damn good

One of the user comments notes that you don't have to disable it for downloads, one of the reasons I just couldn't abide McAfee etc.

For home users, this would probably do the trick, if the set-up isn't daunting. It doesn't scan email or have a firewall, but you can get that in a $50 version if you want it -- though the cheap version will disable anything that gloms onto your drive anyway.

Price: $19.95.

No I'm not getting a kickback on this -- and let me know what you think.

2:42 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Reluctant yet gushing puff by Michael Wolff on the new Steven Brill tome After: How America Confronted the September 12 Era [Romanesko]
There are many reasons -- not least of all the bullying -- that have made media people, and especially other journalists, not love Steve Brill. But the main reason there is no love lost, I think, is that finally, he is just too exhausting. Always in your face. Always the presumptive boss. The preternatural big man. The consummate know-it-all. The total prick. And he just keeps coming. Now, in a startling break from his fevered, ever-onward-and-upward machinations, or -- with a little critical interpretation -- as part and parcel of his vast competitiveness, Brill has emerged from a year and a half of modesty and quiet since the termination of his business ventures with a book.

After begins on September 12, 2001, and chronicles, for nearly 700 pages, and on an almost day-by-day basis, the nation's systemic response to 9/11. Insurance, philanthropy, security, infrastructure, transportation, lobbying, law enforcement. Never before has bureaucracy been the subject of such a sweeping, dramatic, and, in a way, loving portrait. The granular becomes epic.

At the very least, it certainly seems unfair, if not infuriating, that overblown Steve Brill could have the stick-to-itiveness and antlike attention to detail to produce such a massively researched, deeply compelling (in blurbers' terms) "towering achievement" book -- and to have done it in fifteen months (it's really a five-to-ten-year-size work).
Might be worth a look.

Might also be the kind of book everyone buys for the historical value and then never reads.

Look for many copies at a cheap price down the road a piece.

BTW, I've been weak and out-of-commission from the weird gut-locking coda to this bug that's gone around. Hopefully it's pretty much over.

1:53 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Thursday, March 20, 2003

iMac is history
Built around a 15-inch CRT (cathode-ray tube), the original iMac debuted in 1998 for $1,299. The computer eventually sold for as little as $799, keeping its trademark design virtually unchanged while adding features like FireWire, CD burners and DVD players.

However, on Tuesday, Apple removed the lone CRT-based iMac from Apple's main online store, and a source confirmed that Apple does not plan to keep selling it publicly. The machine is still listed on Apple's online education store and schools have been the main reason Apple has continued to make the device.

Introduced in a shade known as Bondi Blue, the iMac spent its childhood in candy colors like grape and lime and its early adulthood in wild hues like Blue Dalmatian and Flower Power before spending its later years in subtle shades like graphite and snow.

3:33 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Increasingly heavy manners from BigMedia forcing companies to spy even more on employees
With early generations of file-swapping software, it was a relatively simple task for network administrators to simply block the network "ports," or designated paths, that the software would use to communicate with the outside world. Many software programs use specific ports to communicate with each other, and so this proved effective.

That capability has been lost with recent generations of file-swapping programs, however. Programs including Kazaa can switch which port they use, essentially trying all the network doors available until they find one that is open. Some also use the same path used by ordinary Web traffic--blocking this would block all of an employee's ability to visit outside Web sites, an unacceptable outcome for many companies.

In response, a generation of tools has emerged that looks closely at network traffic to see exactly what kind of information is included in the data stream, or scans employees' computers to see what kinds of software they have running.

3:28 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Richard K Morgan's Altered Carbon: Powell's review
To say that Richard K. Morgan's debut novel Altered Carbon succeeds in following the pattern of his precursors would not do it justice. This novel is explosively original: combining the techno-fetish of William Gibson, the hardboiled detective narrative of Dashiell Hammett and the rapid-fire heroic bloodshed of the films of John Woo.
Publisher's Weekly:
Morgan's 25th-century Earth is convincing, while the questions he poses about how much Self is tied to body chemistry and how the rich believe themselves above the law are especially timely.

8:15 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Wednesday, March 19, 2003

I see Wire's send full-length won't be out til early May, late April in the UK

However, 7 of the 11 tracks are from the Read and Burn EPs. The second EP was only available through Posteverything and on the tour, but most Wire fans have picked them up somewhere ;).

So the wise move would be to order send from Posteverything, since aside from the 4 new tracks you get a limited edition CD of live mixes from the Chicago Metro show that's not available anywhere else.

send tracklist:
1.01 'In the Art of Stopping (3.34)'
1.02 'Mr Marx's Table (3.02)'
1.03 'Being Watched (2.57)'
1.04 'Comet (3.17)'
1.05 'The Agfers of Kodack (3.13)'
1.06 'Nice Streets Above (full version) (3.46)'
1.07 'Spent (4:43)'
1.08 'Read & Burn (2:35)'
1.09 'You Can't Leave Now (3.41)'
1.10 'Half Eaten (1.58)'
1.11 '99.9 (7:38)'
Looks like they'll be doing a short tour in the US as they'll be over for "the Matt Groening curated All Tomorrow's Parties" (whatever that is) on June 21 in L.A..

4:15 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

I see Leif has added mp3s of his 9 Beet Stretch to the site, accompanying the RealAudio

Well worth a listen.

I've added the link to the "Music > Artists" section at left.

Original post here.

3:45 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

U of Cincinnati team virtually reconstructs ancient settlements in Ohio which were aligned with astronomical observances
EarthWorks is the most comprehensive virtual reconstruction of archaeological remnants, both in the digital re-creation and in the size of the original archeological structures, said project leader John Hancock of the Center for the Reconstruction of Historic Sites at the university.

"Ancient cultures need vivid images to gain a prominent place in the popular imagination," Hancock said. "These computer renderings of the mound's secrets allow the modern imagination to see and to understand what has been destroyed over the last 200 years."

The earliest mounds were large, simple cones; later works included giant geometric shapes, and the structures eventually evolved into animal outlines -- snakes and possum figures being the most popular, according to Hancock.

The earthen structures weren't as showy as the Mayan and Roman temples that ancient architects were constructing around the same era. But they were amazing technical achievements, precisely plotting and marking the moon's rhythms, and serving as historical monuments and landscape markers.
There are images, movies and VRML models at the EarthWorks site (2nd link).

Pretty neat.

Ancient civilizations have always fascinated me.

2:22 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Monday, March 17, 2003

Pauline Oliveros at 70
Her latest piece, written for a 13-piece chamber orchestra, combines the sounds of the ensemble with Oliveros' Expanded Instrument System, a sort of sound "time machine," as she calls it. While the musicians play in the present, the acoustic sounds are recorded on the computer and played a few seconds later in the piece. Oliveros says it's a sound-processing method that expands time in both directions: into the past and into the future. In Sound Geometries the music is modified to send sounds to the speakers in auditory geometric patterns.

"You hear the sounds moving and the patterns changing and the rates of speed changing," Oliveros said. "You'll hear the acoustic sound of the ensemble and the reflected sounds flying around in space."

2:10 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Sunday, March 16, 2003

Scanner interview
I was recently invited to work on a commission that has been the most responsible work I have ever created in a public place, at The Hopital Raymond Poincare in Garches, near Paris, which is famous for treating road injury victims. The chief pathologist Doctor Michel Durigon decided it was time to create a Salle des Departs, a place where families and friends could come to say goodbye to their loved ones without, as he says, "having to suffer sickly background music and a red carpet," and to follow this through I was commissioned to write the soundtrack to this special place. It has been an extraordinary humanitarian project to be offered this chance to create a musical and artistic space in a hospital morgue, and was personally a remarkable artistic journey of discovery. It was a daunting work, having no idea what culture, religion, age of the visitors may be that would be passing through this space to bid farewell to their loved ones but to be part of project to humanise such a difficult experience, and to be a source of sustenance to mourners cannot simply be expressed in words here. The work is permanent and will be heard by an unexpected audience for years to come.

4:28 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Saturday, March 15, 2003

Gus Van Sant on his new experiment in film time, Gerry
Van Sant drew on the influence of experimental filmmakers from his younger days, like Stan Brakhage and Chantal Akerman, as well as contemporary Hungarian director B?la Tarr. Breaking from the comparatively quick-cutting of traditional Hollywood films, "Gerry" often goes several minutes without a single edit.

5:46 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Quelle dommage, as they say in France

Looks like that fire sale of Bréton's collection is happening in April

See previous post.

10:48 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Thursday, March 13, 2003

Art Spiegelman (Maus) quits The New Yorker due to "the widespread conformism of the mass media in the Bush era" [memepool]
(Q) Do you consider yourself a victim of September 11?

"Exactly so. From the time that the Twin Towers fell, it seems as if I've been living in internal exile, or like a political dissident confined to an island. I no longer feel in harmony with American culture, especially now that the entire media has become conservative and tremendously timid. Unfortunately, even The New Yorker has not escaped this trend: Remnick is unable to accept the challenge, while, on the contrary, I am more and more inclined to provocation."

9:03 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

UPI "Religion Correspondent" revels in "postmodern rot" as Dutch woman to marry self
In more ways than one, Jennifer ought to be congratulated. Intentionally or unintentionally, she is taking the Mickey out of a nutty society determined to deconstruct matrimony, a state most religions and cultures have since time immemorial held up as holy and essential for the health of communities and nations.
Um. . .OK.

3:47 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Wednesday, March 12, 2003

Beastie Boys release anti-war song "In a World Gone Mad" on their website as a free download
Well I'm not pro Bush and I'm not pro Saddam
We need these fools to remain calm
George Bush you're looking like Zoolander
Trying to play tough for the camera
What am I on crazy pills? We've got to stop it
Get your hand out my grandma's pocket
We need health care more than going to war
You think it's democracy they're fighting for?

12:18 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Tuesday, March 11, 2003

Newsbytes on search engines: Search Engine Showdown

2:03 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Monday, March 10, 2003

Nice to see Twyla's still at it

I used to go see her troupe in New York back in the 80s, Catherine Wheel, Little Deuce Coupe and all. Always a lot of fun, even though I didn't know dick about dance and didn't feel the need to know more.

9:45 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

pontani sisters
In a shaken, broke, newly prurient New York, burlesque is back
As the country gears up for war, there's an eerie similarity to the World War II era. More than one person wonders if people just need a little escapism amid increasingly dire straits. "Going to a burlesque night is a great way not to think about troubles," says Lady Ace, a member of the Bombshell! Girls, a burlesque troupe that performs the Slipper Room on March 23.

History confirms this. "Burlesque thrives on depression," wrote Irving Zeidman in his 1967 book The American Burlesque Show. "Prettier girls are obtainable at burlesque wages, and the unemployed or indigent male reverts to simple and less expensive forms of entertainment."

The same is true for down-and-out downtown residents who frequent affordable venues like the Slipper Room or the Marquee, the sister performance space to Marion's Continental, where they can watch divas like Darling Star, Harvest Moon, and the bodacious troupe the Glamazons tickle the ribs while titillating the libido.

At first I thought -- right, since 9/11 anything from another, more "innocent" era is going to thrive (how many times will America lose its innocence? -- I posted once before about this).

But perhaps it's natural that in an age when you can get pretty much anything you can imagine online -- and lots of it for free, one way or another -- it makes sense that live, cheap risqué entertainment would make a comeback.

Anf there's a conceptual edge to some of these new shows too.
Nostalgia, it seems, is also in high demand. Even though burlesque was frequently dismissed in its heyday for being lewd, today the "kute kuties" hark back to a more innocent time. "Smart people under 30 know they've missed something entirely and are interested in seeing something not coming through a monitor," says Show's owner, Norman Gosney.

But the new burlesque isn't simply a throwback. "The thing that's interesting about the revival is that so many people doing it are very, very aware of the history and yet are reinventing the form," says Kimb Giunta, an assistant curator at the New York Museum of Sex.

Today's performers are edgier than their predecessors. They twist gender roles in their skits: MsTickle's belly-dance strip ends by revealing a merkin -- fake pubic hair -- in her crotch area as well as a full beard, while Lady Ace portrays a stressed-out career woman who lets loose to Van Halen's "Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love."

"We are not so concerned with duplicating [classic burlesque]," says Lady Ace. "We do things with something sick and twisted thrown in."

Julie Atlas Muz, who many consider to be the most conceptual of the new guard, has a routine where she breaks free of rope ? la Houdini while stripping down to pasties and not much else. "Julie is the cutting edge of burlesque, period," says *BOB*. "A lot of girls are doing completely new things."

*BOB* could just as easily be talking about herself. At Fez, she slips out of a shiny gold lam? gown and then makes a martini using her breasts?which, it should be noted, are considerable. (They are an F cup.) She tops off the confection by producing two olives from the depths of her underpants, before offering it to a red-faced customer in the front row.

9:35 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

CNN says: "Blogging goes mainstream"
...what once seemed like a passing fancy has morphed into a cutting-edge phenomenon that may provide the platform for the Internet's next wave of innovation and moneymaking opportunities.


Dr. Pepper/Seven Up is already testing this theory by mining the Blogosphere to launch an unusual marketing campaign for a new flavored milk drink called Raging Cow.


Richards Interactive also created a blog, ostensibly written by the raging cow herself, punctuated with the slogan, "The Revolution Will Be Homogenized."

Current poll percentiles:
Yes, I blog - 26
No, but will blog - 19
Don't intend to blog - 55

8:07 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

No escape

Common Criminals: L.A. Crime Stories by Larry Fondation: review
Seething with the energy of streets, bars and bedrooms, Los Angeles author Larry Fondation?s second book reads like a collaboration among Elmore Leonard, Dennis Cooper and Eminem. Its author may well be the best unknown writer in America -- and this brilliant collection of short fiction will probably not change that.

12:42 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Sunday, March 09, 2003

Mad Mel?

OK. So here's the list:

Mel Gibson
-- is making a $25mil film about Jesus Christ in Latin and Aramaic -- without subtitles.

-- is a member of the Catholic traditionalists who think the Church went astray after the Council of Trent in the 16th century, and only attend Mass spoken in Latin (and don't eat meat on Friday, and whose female members wear headdresses in church).

-- is in fact the sole benefactor of a traditionalist chapel being built near Malibu.

-- whose father Hutton -- who thinks the Holocaust never happened and calls the Pope the "Koran Kisser" -- is clearly his inspiration (Hutton also thinks the 9/11 attacks were done "by remote control" and that al Qaeda had nothing to do with them -- I'll reserve judgment on that til more facts are in).

-- who has only spoken about speaking about his beliefs on The O'Reilly Factor -- in only the most circumspect way.
Gotta respect him for sticking to his guns. And I may agree with some of the conspiratorial questions his father brings up (not concerning the Holocaust, mind you) -- Mel won't say exactly what he believes.

But . . . wow.

Oh -- and he's optioned the film rights to O'Reilly's mystery novel.

6:27 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Youssou N'Dour cancels US tour in war protest

1:25 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Saturday, March 08, 2003

Public access computers increase library traffic by 25b>

5:32 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

World of Ends: What the Internet Is and How to Stop Mistaking It for Something Else by Doc Searls and David Weinberger [Eclecticity]

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Popular 19th century French author Alphonse Daudet's disturbingly lucid account of ruin by syphilis In the Land of Pain in a new translation: review
Even right at the end of his life, convalescing (but not really) at a spa, his brain was still sharp and funny: "No one remembers anyone's names; brains are racked all the time; there are great holes in conversation. It took ten of us to come up with the word 'industrial.'"

12:45 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Matt Ruff's Set This House in Order: A Romance of Souls: review

If Ruff pulls off a book about 2 people with DID, it's bound to be good.

I enjoyed Sewer, Gas and Electric, though I don't remember it at all.

12:37 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Friday, March 07, 2003

Xanax is becoming the drug of choice among kids in the Miami area: not good, since withdrawal symptoms are severe and can include seizures and panic attacks

10:04 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

eBay to shut down half.com at the end of the year

Boy this sucks. half is where I get most of my books, along with amazon marketplace.

First time eBay has pissed me off.

Maybe someone else will take up the slack. Any suggestions (books & music)?

7:30 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Thursday, March 06, 2003

"People are always trying to figure out how I got into sex work from being an opera singer," she explains. "And really, they're not all that different."

Baltimore's "grande dame of erotica" Hannah Blank
All of these projects are part of Blank's mission: to create a world where the diversity of people's actual desires is reflected in the media. "I want to see skinny, pale, geek-boy porn. I want to see women making porn about diesel dykes with chin hair," she says. "Whatever it is that gets you off, I want to see it."

But despite her success as a writer and educator, Blank doesn't see Roseanne emerging as a sex symbol anytime soon. "It's not only the media that are telling teenagers that they're not desirable and worthy of being loved unless they weigh 80 pounds and look like Britney Spears," she says. "It's teenagers telling one another that, because no one is supporting them to say anything else." Progressive pornography is a small step in the right direction, she says, but it alone can't keep people from making judgments about people based on their looks.

"How many of those things do you see represented around you?" Blank asks. "I'd love to see that change. I'd also love to see the moral judgments that people make about people's skin color, whether you have a penis or a vagina, change. I ain't waitin' up nights."

11:11 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Cheech Marin reconfigures Chicano art by presenting his premier collection as fine art instead of folk art or agit-prop

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Activist instrumentals from GYBE and the new Jello Biafra spoken-word album

10:50 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

If you've got some spare scratch and are into rare books or entheogens and their place in spiritual practice, or both, check it out:
In 1978, Robert Gordon Wasson, the Wall Street Banker who rediscovered the magic mushroom, teamed up with Albert Hofmann, the discoverer of LSD, and Carl Ruck, a classical scholar from Boston University and published The Road to Eleusis: Unveiling the Secret of the Mysteries.

Bibliophiles know this book immediately sold out and became a rare and precious find on the antiquarian book market, selling for hundreds of dollars when it could be found. The book unveils the ancient secret of the Eleusinian Mysteries as an ergot derived entheogen.

In 1998 a limited 20th Anniversary edition of this classic text was reissued by Hermes Press International, in cooperation with the Wasson Estate and Harvard University where Wasson's voluminous archives are preserved. This new clothbound edition, printed at Stamperia Valdonega in Verona, Italy, contains a preface by the famed historian of religion, Professor Huston Smith, who calls this book, "a historical tour de force while being more than that. For by direct implication it raises contemporary questions our cultural establishment has thus far deemed too hot to face."

Albert Hofmann has also contributed a new afterword to this edition, "The Meaning of the Eleusinian Mysteries for Today's World," which extolls the relevance of these ancient mysteries to today's global environmental and spiritual crisis.

Proceeds from this offering will be used to further a documentary film/DVD on the role of entheogens in western philosophy and religion, produced by Robert Forte, editor of Entheogens and the Future of Religion and Timothy Leary Outside Looking In. [link]

7:23 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Web used to create "songline" tour of real NYC beneath maps [Undernews]
...by relying on maps, signs and Manhattan's perpendicular geography, New Yorkers have given up something important: a sense of place. If you can get from your starting place to your destination without knowing anything about the points in between, chances are you won't pay much attention to them. And we do hurry about town without looking up, many of us, walking by the same buildings hundreds of times without noticing what they are or even what they look like.

To this end I offer these as the New York Songlines. An oral cultures uses songs as the most efficient way to remember and transmit large amounts of information; the Web is our technological society's closest equivalent. Each Songline will follow a single pathway, whether it goes by one name or several; the streets I plan to follow from river to river, while the avenues will at least at first be read only in part, focusing on the upper Downtown/lower Midtown part of the island I know best.

8:48 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Wednesday, March 05, 2003

Sci Fi is running their movie based on Philip José Farmer's Riverworld series on March 22 [digitally obsessed]

I read To Your Scattered Bodies Go, the first in the series back years ago, and really enjoyed it. What Sci Fi does with it -- I'm skeptical. But I'll try it.
Riverworld is a mystical place where people from every historical era have been reborn young and healthy, from Rome's Emperor Nero to Mark Twain. Among them is Hale, a 21st-century American astronaut who emerges as the leader of a motley crew of souls.

11:25 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Some nice satviews

7:27 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

I know nothing about the Emachines, but their new $998 (including an Eview 17F 17" monitor) package includes a 2.4GHz Pentium 4 processor, 512MB of RAM (random access memory), an 80GB hard drive, a CD-rewritable and a DVD-ROM drive

Would depend on their customer service etc., but that's pretty tasty.

7:20 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Shamelessly cribbed from Rob Breszny's newsletter
by Ellen Bass (www.ellenbass.com)

Pray to whoever you kneel down to:
Jesus nailed to his wooden or marble or plastic cross,
his suffering face bent to kiss you,
Buddha still under the Bo tree in scorching heat,
Yahweh, Allah, raise your arms to Mary
that she may lay her palm on our brows,
to Shekinhah, Queen of Heaven and Earth,
to Inanna in her stripped descent.

Hawk or Wolf, or the Great Whale, Record Keeper
of time before, time now, time ahead, pray. Bow down
to terriers and shepherds and siamese cats.
Fields of artichokes and elegant strawberries.

Pray to the bus driver who takes you to work,
pray on the bus, pray for everyone riding that bus
and for everyone riding buses all over the world.
If you haven't been on a bus in a long time,
climb the few steps, drop some silver, and pray.

Waiting in line for the movies, for the ATM,
for your latt? and croissant, offer your plea.
Make your eating and drinking a supplication.
Make your slicing of carrots a holy act,
each translucent layer of the onion, a deeper prayer.

Make the brushing of your hair
a prayer, every strand its own voice,
singing in the choir on your head.
As you wash your face, the water slipping
through your fingers, a prayer: Water,
softest thing on earth, gentleness
that wears away rock.

Making love, of course, is already a prayer.
Skin and open mouths worshipping that skin,
the fragile case we are poured into,
each caress a season of peace.

If you're hungry, pray. If you're tired.
Pray to Gandhi and Dorothy Day.
Shakespeare. Sappho. Sojourner Truth.
Pray to the angels and the ghost of your grandfather.

When you walk to your car, to the mailbox,
to the video store, let each step
be a prayer that we all keep our legs,
that we do not blow off anyone else's legs.
Or crush their skulls.
And if you are riding on a bicycle
or a skateboard, in a wheel chair, each revolution
of the wheels a prayer that as the earth revolves
we will do less harm, less harm, less harm.

And as you work, typing with a new manicure,
a tiny palm tree painted on one pearlescent nail
or delivering soda or drawing good blood
into rubber-capped vials, writing on a blackboard
with yellow chalk, twirling pizzas, pray for peace.

With each breath in, take in the faith of those
who have believed when belief seemed foolish,
who persevered. With each breath out, cherish.

Pull weeds for peace, turn over in your sleep for peace,
feed the birds for peace, each shiny seed
that spills onto the earth, another second of peace.
Wash your dishes, call your mother, drink wine.

Shovel leaves or snow or trash from your sidewalk.
Make a path. Fold a photo of a dead child
around your VISA card. Gnaw your crust
of prayer, scoop your prayer water from the gutter.
Mumble along like a crazy person, stumbling
your prayer through the streets.

7:03 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Ufo causes traffic accidents in Scotland

11:53 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

The latest in a proud tradition of reality-shredding, Jason Lubyk's New World Disorder Magazine
Now your everyday life is more like some direct-to-Christian video store adaptation of the Book of Revelations than an episode of Friends: anthrax has usurped your credit card bill as the scariest thing that might appear in your mailbox, ponzi-economies implode, non-linear wars explode, and America becomes an EMPIRE, the Empire that WSJ editor Max Boot calls an attractive Empire, the one that everyone wants to join, until you're inside it of course, and you?re getting a little spooked out with all the talk of microchip implants, the blatant suspension of civil liberties and the Bush Youth volunteer citizen corps that are monitoring the black Marxist professor on your block. The fact that clones are being born every week and that the world is getting so hot that the polar ice caps are melting faster than Michael Jackson's face almost seems like small beer when your wondering when WW3 is going to begin.

11:52 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Decent Powell's interview with Anthony Swofford, writer of Jarhead
I had a few great moments after my reading in Seattle. It was the first time I've signed books across the table from someone who was going to go buy it and who'd come to hear me read. There was a mix of women from thirty to sixty-five. That was satisfying: it's indeed not being read just as a war book, because it's not; it's a literary memoir that happens to take war as its main narrative thrust.

Two former Marines were there as well. One was an old-timer. As I was reading I thought, I think that guy's a jarhead. I had no idea what his response was going to be. He was the first guy to raise his hand with a question. I thought, Oh, I'm killed. He's just going to nail me. And he says, "When I was a jarhead, if someone called you a jarhead, you'd beat him up. When did the term change?" I chatted about that for a little while: "Your buddy can call you a jarhead, but when a guy who's not your buddy -- say he's a Navy guy -- calls you a jarhead, there might be trouble." Afterwards, he came up and he thanked me for writing the book. He said, "I was in Korea and Vietnam, and you really nailed the Marine Corps."

2:39 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

FX's The Pentagon Papers might be worth a looksee this Sunday

I always look forward to James Spader doing films that work for him. Of course the subject matter is a part of my history, reading TPP as a teen was instrumental in developing my critical view of governments.

Hopefully the movie will be worthy.

2:11 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Monday, March 03, 2003

Going out with a bang [Undernews]

2:29 PM - [Link] - Comments ()

Cronenberg interview in salon

This'll probably be up somewhere outside the salon premium ghetto soon, and if you don't want to click through the ad to see it right now, there's another interview here.
You've always been perceived as a director who came halfway out of horror movies and halfway out of the avant-garde. Is that fair?

I think it's fair. I've often said that Toronto is halfway between Europe and Hollywood and I was influenced both ways. Also, when I started filmmaking it was the New York underground that was the main inspiration. It was the '60s: Grab the camera and do your own thing.

Do you mean, like, John Cassavetes?

No! I mean the Kuchar brothers and Ed Emshwiller and Kenneth Anger. The real underground. Meaning you wouldn't be making features, pretty much. You'd be making shorts. They made Cassavetes look commercial by comparison. Not that I didn't like Cassavetes. I did, and I saw his films. He came to Toronto with "Faces," I remember. They had a couple of screenings and it was sold out. We were all waiting in line and he came out and walked along the line and told us that we couldn't get in but there would be another screening in two hours. He apologized and was very gracious, and we all came back two hours later, which meant, like, 2 o'clock in the morning. Those were good times.

But I've always taken myself seriously as an artist. I remember being on a panel with [fellow directors] John Landis and John Carpenter, and I kept talking about art and saying, you know, artist this and artist that. After the interview was over, they both looked at me. I said, "What?" They said, "You called yourself an artist." I said, "Yeah." They said, "We would never do that." They were embarrassed by it, and shocked. It just wasn't a California, genre-filmmaker thing to do. Whereas for me it was absolutely natural to talk that way and think that way.

Old salon interviews with Cronenberg: with Susie Bright on Crash; eXistenZ with Alan Rapp; salon profile from period of Crash.

10:17 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

See ctc for item on worldwide theatre protest

9:39 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Saturday, March 01, 2003

"...the industry as we know it could vanish not so much because of technology but because few people over the age of 30 would care if it did"

The end of The Music Racket As We've Known It
Rightly or wrongly, record companies are detested by politicians (for corrupting youth), by webcasters (for demanding royalties), and by their customers (for inflating prices). Musicians and songwriters are famous for loathing the labels, and many have resisted licensing their songs to MusicNet and pressplay. (Both are under investigation for possible antitrust violations.) Radio and MTV aren't in the industry's corner; the labels, through "independent promotion" programs, effectively have to pay them to broadcast music. And the electronics industry's attitude toward the labels is summed up by an Apple slogan: Rip. Mix. Burn. Which, a music executive once told me, translates into "Fuck you, record labels."

8:13 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

Jarhead: A Marine's Chronicle of the Gulf War and Other Battles by Anthony Swofford

Looks pretty damn good.

"This is not a pretty memoir -- but veined with beauty. It is as outrageous, irreverent, funny, and obscene as an Aristophanes comedy, and as rich in pain and moral understanding as the Iliad." -- Jonathan Shay

1:58 AM - [Link] - Comments ()

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Rarely has reality needed so much to be imagined. --Chris Marker