Check this out!
(If you can't read the image, click on it to enlarge.)
Is this an effort by Google to eliminate or aggravate Clock-Brain? I don't know, but it's odd that this bring feature out on International Clockbrain Awareness Day! Just the idea of "custom-time" invokes a strangelet in my brain; what is time if it is custom? I guess it is all custom, and that's the point of Clock-brain awareness. The ticks tock tock tock in spacetime; but it's an arbitrary designation. Why tick tock tick tock? Why not tick tock tack tick tock?
Update: Duh, it's April 1st. Google wants to turn our brains into clocks, just like the rest of them.
Monday, March 31, 2008
Check this out!
For two seconds on April 2nd at noon turn off all of your clocks! No need to consult your timetables, wrist watches, international time zone guides, or sun dials. Let your friends know! Create a worldwide rally against clock-brain! Only together can we find a cure.
About the group:
Clock-brain awareness group
Common Interest - Health & Wellness
Clock-brain is a modern condition afflicting anyone who follows a clock. Symptoms include being late, early or on time to events. A regular routine that does not follow the patterns of the sun and moon but rather a chronometric device. Ticking sounds in your brain that may or may not be audible to you or those around you. You see visions of a clock or clocks regardless of the physical proximity of clocks.
International Institute of Clock-brain Studies
Noon Clock-brain Avenue
Clock Face, United Kingdom
Clock-brain may lead to anxiety, depression and timeliness.
Link to the facebook page.
To sum up: In order to face clock-brain head on you have to turn around and ignore the clock-face. But the clock face is not in your face it's in your mind--which is the thing that is behind your face. Think of time and how it doesn't exist; watch the wind blow by and see how it doesn't count the time. Then think of clocks and how it doesn't stop the wind. Clock-brain is the modern affliction of humankind. It can't be stopped because stopping is the idea of clocks, not the mind. That's why we have to raise awareness!!!
That way Americans could be cool again.
Otherwise we'll get eaten by strange dragons. Speaking of which, Laogzed is preparing another podcast. He apologizes for the delay. He's been very busy; but he's very concerned about the goings on in the human world.
Meanwhile, I started a MULTIPLY account, which I think will be the next friendster.
Saturday, March 29, 2008
On the other hand, I might be the person to negotiate with the strangelets:
Dr. Arkani-Hamed said concerning worries about the death of the Earth or universe, “Neither has any merit.” He pointed out that because of the dice-throwing nature of quantum physics, there was some probability of almost anything happening. There is some minuscule probability, he said, “the Large Hadron Collider might make dragons that might eat us up.”
...oops, forgot to link to the article, but I'm sure you've seen it already.
That's all I have to say. I know I spew a lot of bullshit. But I read a lot; and I'm one-hundred percent sure that it would be bad to vote for McCain. I don't care if you're pro-Israel, anti-terrorist, a Ron Paul advocate, or an idealist: You must not vote for this man.
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
This guy muses his new life with an iPod. My mom just ordered a MacBook and an iPod nano. I bought a nano what seems like forever, and it is still doing me good. But I do agree with this guy:
I want useful playlists. I want "Tori Amos songs that make a damn lick of sense." I want "Beck songs where the rhythm track doesn't sound like he's throwing Ben Wa balls at an armadillo." I want "Nick Cave songs that aren't explicitly about bleeding to death."
Someday I'll get this all sorted out. I don't have money right now, but after a few months in Korea I should have some cash to buy a Mac; I'll probably go with the MacBook Pro because everybody says if you buy a laptop it should be a Mac. And I'll use it to pretend to finish writing my novel, even though Steve Jobs nobody reads. (Read that article, it's quite good.) Computers are great for pretending.
Meanwhile, I have been messing with the Smart Playlists, creating rips in the mp3-time continuum; buying CDs, downloading tracks (legally!), fretting about loss of audio quality, superior open source file formats, worried about new releases or re-releases on DVD-audio or other superior quality formats, whether or not Apple will open their entire iTunes library, all the video and audio that I have that I need to compile and edit and so on and so forth. All the books I have read. And write. Meanwhile I have all the freetime in the world and I'm sitting here typing about all the things that I'm not doing.
Okay, I'll stop. Let's stop it now. Unplug the pod.
Yesterday I was in the Apple store and I wanted to do something but I didn't. I wanted to go to one of the smug salesmen, go up to him, say, "Hey! Listen, this is my first time I've been in an Apple store. I see all kinds of products here, and I'm quite intrigued--if not overwhelmed. So, listen. I own a nanopod, and I want to upgrade to a newer one; also, I'm intrigued by all the laptops available--I've heard they're the best--although I'm not sure whether I'd want to buy a MacBook or a MacBook pro. Oh, I got so many questions. But let me ask you one thing: Here it is first question: Do you guys have a bathroom I can use?" And then after they point towards the bathroom I'd ask "Is it okay if I make a poopie?"
Not particularly creative, inspiring or original, but entertaining nonetheless. Here are my contributions to the genre.
Here is the original. From cursor. While we're on the topic, how about that Base-10 number? It also turns out that, opposed to the ratio of 2.6 to 1 in Vietnam, the ratio in Iraq is 15 to 1. But, again, in base 31 that ratio is only F to 1.
Sunday, March 23, 2008
I'm not just saying that because the latest episode features some of my music.
This guy uncannily finds some gems in the scum-soup that is the internet. Very good taste.
There's also a sweet Rad Unicorn track.
PS: Not that I have anything against scum.
Friday, March 21, 2008
Here's a good clip with Bill Maher on Hardball. I was talking earlier about the the anti-Idiot talk; and I really don't like calling people dumb. But there is a 'culture' in the US that revels in and respects a certain brand of idiocy and ignorance. Bush is the epitome of this; and why Bush as punk rock is so stupid (I'm referring to the Right Brothers, and my half-assed, sloppy critique.) And maybe that guy with the anti-idiot bumpersticker, and people like my idol Bill Hicks, and his entertaining rip-off Lewis Black, are just responding to the anti-intellectual climate of the US. It is reactionary, and bars and cable comedy is rarely subtle. It is a necessary reaction, like my reaction to call people fascists. Anyhow, Bill Maher's point about McCain being dumber, not tougher is what has become evident. Of course, all along, being tough has seemed to many of us as just a form of being dumb.
An uncharacteristically crystalline thought formed in my foggy brain today. I thought the fundamental problem with The War on Terror is that there is a fundamental block to understanding the world that cannot be trespassed in normative discourse. I generally feel I cannot discuss it unless I am among close friends, or those who I know who are generally politically sympathetic. The thought was, well, why did 9/11 happen? Well, it's because we are in a War. People die in wars. What do you expect? Was 9/11 the START of the war? I don't know. Some say it is an age-old clash of civilizations; I guess another way to look at it would be to say it is a clash of East and West. The chickens coming home to roost? Well, these views are merely interpretations. What thought came to me, which I believed the morning of 9/11 up to the present--only I was not able to articulate it--was that there is a PROBLEM. That is why 9/11 occured, it was a message telling the US that there is a problem. We chose to interpret this as an act of WAR. So, what do you do in a WAR, you send the military somewhere. Or, that's what tough guys do. This particular war was not initiated by a nation-state. It was initiated by suicide bombers associated with an underground worldwide movement. In the framework of the idea of war, there are multiples sides. We decided that there were two sides, the terrorists and US. In a war with two sides, both have power and advantages, and they both utilize them to effect a defeat on the other. But how would a defeat of a non-Nation actualize? Can a non-nation sign a treaty? Like the IRA, can Al-qaeda agree to turn in all their weapons? Well, it's more complicated than that. Al-qaeda is a large, amorphous political and militant movement with a number of goals. How does it operate? It's fed by young desperate men from a pool of countries, mostly Arabic. Who do we bomb? How do we win this war? Now I'm coming to my specific thought: This is a war of two sides, but one has clear advantages over the other. The US has the advantage. Nobody would argue with that point. So, can I say to a war-supporter: Do you agree with me that the US has the upperhand, overall, in the War Against Terror, that is, the war against so called Islamic Radicals? That would tell me that if we were smart, we could neutralize the "threat" to US "interests." But ostensibly, if our goal is to remove the threat of violence against the US and US-allied nations, we could utilize our problem-solving skills, use basic critical thinking, to objectively examine the situation, find root causes and see how we can manage the situation. And "manage" it we could, if we indeed have greater power than the "terrorists." Finding a humane solution to the problem of undue carnage caused by discontented people on this planet would attest to our nation's greatness. If we have to resort to brutality in order to contain the threat, then it should be considered a disaster; it would show us to be people with low esteem for the value for human life, as well as a people with little imagination. This is all hypothetical. This is what I imagine what people who value the intellect, the inherent worth of human life, those who believe in the great capacities of our fellow human beings, despite appearances of ignorance, stupidity, or menace, would believe. I believe that the term "idealist" is destructively reductionist, but this idea of mine is an ideal. And one I would like to bring up to a war supporter. It seems so clear to me now; it took me 7 years to articulate this idea. But the main point is that even now that I can articulate it, it seems like something that I could not bring up in a conversation with a war supporter. I fear I would be called naive and idealist. Not serious, in parlance of the Washington pundit. But it seems stupid not to bring it up, so I will try the next time I have an opportunity.
One last thing. I had mentioned to a friend about this idea of Idealism. I have believed since my teens that so-called "realists" are as much idealists as so-called "idealists." What else is Bush but a foggy-brained idealist? McCain would be branded an absolute realist by his supporters. But so-called "realism" is an "idealist" philosophy because it has this ideal of the "real;" in other words, a self-described realist would say that this or that "ideal" is not achievable in the "real" world. But what exactly this "real" world is is never described by self-described realists; if it is, it is in only essentialist terms of men and war and power: The Way Things Work. This view is exactly an ideal of how the world works. It is merely a framework of viewing the world: of WHAT can be achieved; what is possible. That's exactly what an idealist is, a person who has a view about WHAT can be achieved; what is possible. We will bring Democracy to Iraq. We won't stop the war until we have achieved (WHAT) in Iraq. So if you're going to knock me about being an "idealist," I would like to knock you back down. My idealism is my outfit and bearing that I wear to the party of ideas. Everybody wants to be cool at the party. Everybody wants slink in the room sly and cool. But something that is out of style will be marked. A party of self-described "realists" calls something out of style an idealist. But we idealists have to come in strutting our stuff. Eventually we will be the new cool.
Thursday, March 20, 2008
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
Seriously, though, I do hope they rocket his ashes up into three geostationary orbits. His early books were groundbreaking; but the later books were crap. He wrote 2001 the same time Kubrick wrote his script--Clark made the explanations, but Kubrick made the genius.
Monday, March 17, 2008
John Cole uses my favorite word; The Politics of Insanity; Medical Metaphors; Self-described Not-a-hipster
In a useful way to summarize NYT op-eds.
I'm STILL waiting for my Visa. The gods have spirited an ethereal nimbus of gloomy limbo upon my being. I wait. I wait. I wait.
Someday, again, I will teach.
In the meantime, I can catch up with how horrible everything is.
The Clash sell-out, but only in earbuds. You can sell-out too. For whatever reason(s), these two articles really disturb me. I can't put my finger on it. Somehow I feel I'm being implicated. So what, I like The Clash, and it's played in Star Bucks. Can I live with that? Yes. The real strange music will never make it.
Last week I organized my links, and, as you can see, on the right (isn't it weird that I don't have to tell you if it's your right, or my right, okay, it's not) I have added friends. If you want to be a slop friend, just make a comment or email me. I have to say I have been reading Liz Von Uhl's blog, and her last post has sort been sticking in my brain. I went to grad(?!) school with her, and we reconnected through facebook. She's a talented poet, and I think she writes fiction too. Anyhow, it's this post about the absurd. I really like the way she explores ideas, and find her way with language intoxicating. But I often get into terrible arguments with poets. I can see what she means about metaphor being inextricable with absurdity, and especially in the context of teaching students about them. Lis in my experience is a no-nonsense person, and so I would say she might have a better perspective on all this. Metaphors, absurd? Okay, I go along with that. They are exaggerated comparisons, I suppose. I have to say I have a sinking feeling that this is a reduction--and the great satan knows I think reductions are necessary for teaching! The concept of the absurd is the notion of ridiculousnessness of everything--and isn't it all absurd? I think metaphors are absurd, but not making metaphors is more absurd! Our language is threaded inextricably with metaphors; it seems to be a process that our brains take to more naturally than something, like, say, multiplication. Again, that's my abstracted, space-case view of the world. Anyhow, Lis, I consider you a fellow, raging soldier against The Abyss, so I hope no offense is taken. If you read this.
Okay, I feel a little happier. Oh happiness, sanitize my melancholy blood.
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
I generally don't like them. Today I saw a truck with a very impressive graphic displaying the driver's association with the US Marine Corp and his affection for the flag. Okay, that's fine. But underneath all the visual hullabaloo were at least two bumperstickers. The one on the right took me awhile to discern; I assumed it would have said "Bush Was Right," or Rush Is Right, or Support the Troops, or something typically jingoistic. Nope. I don't know if you've seen this one, but it said in all caps with several exclamation points: "WHERE'S THE FENCE?!?!?" Yipes. That gave me a chill up the spine, but shouldn't be surprising in the land of Tancredo. Then I scoped the other bumpersticker on the left side: "Ron Paul '08." If that doesn't give anyone pause who had ever even considered voting for Ron Paul, well. Well it just reinforces my prejudice regarding the American Right Wing "Libertarian" movement and Ron Paul.
And the Right Brothers and their song Bush Was Right reinforces my prejudice of against all things neo-punk. The guitar lick "neener neener neener;" what could be more idiotic? But that was the point of the Ramones. It seemed idiotic, except it was genius.
But, on the contrary side, I don't like the "anti-idiot" talk either. I saw a bumpersticker the other day about what this country needs is to get rid of all the idiots. In Orcinus terminology, this Eliminationist. I want to ask these people, people like comedian Lewis Black, who says we need to get rid of all the idiots: How do we determine who are the idiots? Mandatory IQ tests? What about idiot-savants? What about the Ramones? They seem like idiots, they act like idiots, they sound like idiots, but what they did was genius. Unlike the Right Brothers--who look like fratboys who got moderately high scores on the SAT.
Monday, March 10, 2008
An Alternative to Suicide does a public service and unearths these gems.
By the way, regardless of the quality of these miracles of sound, the real Suicide is better.
The songs on Taylor Parkes' Alternative to Suicide has up for download are highly recommended. Kudos to Parkes' industriousness. I'm sure in a less-regulated world he'd be a billionaire.
Saturday, I was a delegate at the Denver County Democrat convention. It was a mob, but I am a believer in the system. I took notes during the proceedings...here they are, unaltered, with minor clarifications ...
All the white cords- I keep thinking they are Ipod cords! (little pieces of strings around everyone's neck to hold our credentials- what precinct, our candidate of choice, senate district, etc...)
One huge line, than another. (my official envelope said district 5. I was really 7. It took 3 loooooong lines for them to figure this out for me.)
Overabundance of G-L last names in district 7. (the A-F and M-Z lines had like 5 people at a time, my line had like 50.)
Diversity? Whites and Blacks (this meant that I didn't see a lot of Hispanic people and very, very few Asians.)
Met State Treasurer Cary Kennedy. Cold, slim hand. (all toothy smiles. I couldn't think of anything to say to her. After she left I did. "How's the money?")
Demos gave me wrong list, on boundary? (q.v.)
Scooter parking! (There was a large crowd of Vespas and whatnot outside. Sometimes you just gotta shake yer head and smile...)
Denvercrat! (a number of folks had that on their t-shirts)
Are Repub conventions so Chaotic? (It was insane, like a sold-out baseball game on crack or something.)
Case of pens in the backpack- I wanna steal one. (there was a guy in the mass-iine into the theater, his backpack was half open and I resisted the urge to try to take one of his pens...)
(now I sat in the huge theater...a number of party people spoke. I wrote some things down.)
I guess that feeling of those two overused terms "hope" and "change" is the pervading feeling here- but its really hard to know if it's really "real." (or what's been crammed down our maws) But at least they're playing Neil Young. My feelings here- are, I think, complicated- cynically optimistic? I've never really believed in any Presidential candidate. (which was the problem I had with my being there...I wasn't the hard-core believer that many of my fellow delegates were. I felt like I was mis-representing myself, and my candidate.)
Yes we can, a man starts a chant in our district section. The enthusiasm is, of course, encouraging but...(where will these people be in 4 years, 8?) Obama! Hillary! people everywhere shout.
Hey...if we can make politics like sports in America, we just might have a chance...a chance for what I ask myself.
haven't said the pledge (of allegiance) since grade school.
I just want a President that i don't have to worry about... (screwing up) for 8 years years I have had this weight on my head.
Barack spellcheck ( Barack was spelled incorrectly on some of our literature. The speaker noted that the name Barack was not in spellcheck.)
Hope, a negative connotation? ( I guess I felt as if all this "hope" name-dropping made it feel as if we were in very desperate situation. And i guess, in a lot ways, we are...but most of us are still overweight...so...)
Degette speaks. (A plain-spoken, wonderful woman.)
Serious woman: Obama! I love her. (this woman, in the row ahead of me, kept shouting out Obama! at the most inappropriate times....when our Senators were speaking she shouted, when taking votes, she shouted, anytime,everytime, this shrill voice, Obama! When challenged by annoyed democrats, she said free speech! Free speech! She was probably the highlight of the day.)
"let's get another kind of bush in the White House!" (tee hee!)
DNC vs. Denver Olympics ( Did you know that Denver is the only city to ever refuse the Olympics? In 1976. I think it was because then Gov. Dick Lamm had environmental concerns. I was thinking maybe the DNC could make up for that...)
(State Speaker of the House Andrew) Romanoff: Good! (An impassioned speaker, Among other reasons, he encouraged us send:)
(GB's) Stimulus checks to Democrats.
GB united the Democrats
The fact here is that while I'm here as a supporter of Obama (q.v.)
Democrat is the new black faux pas ( a remark by the CO democratic party director. She was referring to fashion, but considering that audience was probably 30-45% African-American, it didn't go down too well...)
Mitch Morrisey, DA strong- dedicated seeming looks like he could kick my ass. Training cops to recognize gay hate crimes.
Elbra Wedgworth Got us the convention 25,000 volunteers.
(and my last note. The convention went on for awhile after this, but I was getting really tired.)
the fervor of Obama supporters comparing hope to revolution are we in such times now?