Thursday, February 28, 2008

Twin Peaks

Oh, David Lynch. I could kiss you.

I just finished watching, for the second time (and despite my fury at the release of an entire BOX SET IMMEDIATELY AFTER the release of the long-awaited Season II DVD), Twin Peaks. I am confounded once more by the fact that in the not so distant past, a prominent television broadcast company funded this show. And rightfully so! It is brilliant. Masterfully crafted, deftly acted (albeit sometimes "canny" was what they were going for).

The last episode, in particular, is startling. The last twenty minutes or so have some truly terrifying imagery - it doesn't hold back. Characters screaming with blanked out eyes, little people dancing backwards and laughing maniacally, Doppelgangers soul stealing, screaming, strobe lighting at crucial moments to simultaneously show and obscure, and all done modestly. The images are stark and undoctored. I would have screamed if I hadn't been smiling, out of my unadulterated love for this show and this man. This show is, IMO, one of the top three television shows ever created (treated HBO as "TV," despite their claims to the contrary).

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I'm very excited today. Dedicated readers of both this site and The Dead Chinchilla know that I often refer to the "one reader" that I have. Well, in recent days it has come to my attention that I may have a couple more than that. This is, of course, delightful news. So, like the self-centered, egotistical, narcissist (and self-deprecator!) that I am, I decided I'd love to know exactly everything that I can about these visitors, including their numbers, where they've come from/how they managed to find me (I thought I had found such a good hiding spot. Dang!), and things they might like. Capitalism tells me that these things are important! And when Capitalism speaks, I listen!

How am I going to do all of these things, you ask? Google Analytics.

I don't know much about this tool, but if it turns up anything good (or anything bad!) I promise to let you know. Thanks, as always, for reading! Now I'm going to know everything about you, so that I can be a better friend.


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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Free stuffs

Hey dudes and dudettes. The world is a terrible place for creativity these days. Intellectual Property laws are tough (especially when you consider that "Intellectual Property" makes no sense). If you're like me, you believe the future is FREE!! Since a popular music download site was taken down back in October, I have found myself completely devoid of new music to listen to, with rare exception. Today by happenstance I stumbled across some free music by Benn Jordan (The Flashbulbs), and I wanted to share it with you! The music is very moody and contemplative, with a rock feel, and it's free! If you are going to download it, please read this official release from Benn Jordan and his record label.

Other great links related to free culture:

Just for the Love of it - a site that promotes freeconomy, the concept of giving people services and knowledge in exchange for the same

Gutenberg - an online resource for audiobooks and text transcriptions of tons of popular titles

Internet Archive - tons and tons of free media to sample and observe

Creative Commons - a new kind of copyright, this website has links to a lot of free stuff, everything from art to software licenses!

Know another good site? Post it in the comments!! Share the love of free.

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If you're like me, you enjoy a good Garfield comic every now and again. Usually when you're pooping. And, like, 30 Garfield comics...

At any rate, Ronald has hooked me up with a pretty funny site where they Photoshopped Garfield out of a bunch of panels to create a more hysterical (in both senses of the word) version of the comic. Pretty danged funny.


Tuesday, February 26, 2008


That's how I was today. I had a horrible day of work, and it was compounded by the fact that I was so sick I felt a little drunk.

Needless to say, when I got home with achy joints and a chill from the (February?!) rain, I needed some chicken soup. There were two problems:

1) I had no chicken
2) I had no idea how to make chicken soup.

The first could not be helped. I am completely vegetarian at home now... the only meats I'm consuming are when I go out places, and usually only if the food costs midrange or higher because then I can at least convince myself that it's decent meat.

But, I had bullion and a ton of vegetables!! So I knew that something could be done.

I checked out a site called, and found these lovely instructions on making the stuff. They were simple instructions, easy to follow, and while I wasn't following it by the book, I couldn't have made the soup without it! So I hope you'll take a minute the next time it's chilly and you're feeling a little under the weather to check out the directions and make yourself some Chicken Noodle Soup! In My Opinion, it's just what the doctor ordered.

All cheez aside, I have heard and read about the burgeoning health benefit discoveries made about chicken soup, particularly something in the fact that the chicken is boiled.



Just TRY to get that water bottle through, mothafucka.

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Sunday, February 24, 2008


For days now, I've been thinking about an internet curiosity that I wanted to share with you, because hey, you've got nothing better to do right? Right.

The thing I want to talk about is links. Not just any links, but unannounced links. You've no doubt noticed on my site, as I'm sure you have on others, that sometimes I'll make a word a link without indicating to you in the sentence that it is a link (i.e., click "here.") For instance, a few posts ago (Curiosities), I made the actor Kevin Corrigan's name be a link, without telling you I'd do so. The sentence made no reference to the fact that one word was a link to something else. This has been popularized by Wikipedia.

What I find so interesting about this is that it is a whole new way of communication. Imagine this:

You and I are sitting in a cafe in Brooklyn. Why not, right? We're young, we're hip, we like tea and coffee. So we're in this cafe. I'm talking to you about the massacre at Tiananmen Square. Your mind immediately recalls the meaning of "Tiananmen Square," a place in China about which you learned in high school. I make mention of the recent film entitled Summer Palace. You haven't seen this film. You haven't even heard of it. But here's the exciting part: Your brain gives you the option of learning about it immediately, before the conversation continues any further. Sounds like some Matrix shit, right? But that's EXACTLY the way blogs are structured when they have these metalinks inscribed in the text. It is a way of allowing you to instantaneously find out what a word or person or concept is before you proceed any further.

Now, you're probably saying, "Well, that's not new. Anytime I read an article, if I don't know what something is, I can look it up before I keep reading." And I'd say yes, that's true. But the fact is that you have to look elsewhere for that information. It is not instantaneously accessible to you. That can be a deterrent for people. But regardless of whether it is a deterrent or not, it lacks the excitement of immediacy.

I could make every single word in a post be a link to something else. I could write only one sentence of seven words, and link to something with each word. If you were to click each link before continuing on, it would take you forever to read that sentence. In a way, that's something our brains are doing all of the time. Constantly referencing what each word means to us - emotionally, mentally, physically, the whole deal. It's why mention of a single person's name can evoke intense emotion, distraction, excitement, anything. If and when we find a way to merge man with machine (as some argue is the next step of human evolution), we could one day expect this instantaneous learning, this burying of "links" within human speech and thought, to be a commonplace aspect of life. Wouldn't that be exciting?

That's what I've been thinking about. Do with it what you will.



What do pretty pictures, humongous machines, and slightly witty reportage writing have in common?

They are the subject of a very neat article by National Geographic concerning the world's brand new particle accelerator. What are the Europeans (nay, all physicists) looking for with this giant, 17-mile-wide ring underground, smashing bits of invisible stuff against other bits of invisible stuff? A little thing that the press likes to call "The God Particle." Also known as the Higgs Particle, it is believed that this particle is the base particle, the single ingredient out of which the entire universe is constructed.

If your interest is piqued, then I suggest you read this article, which does a fantastic job of explaining how all this junk works, while throwing in a couple of snickery jokes here and there. Worth your time to read, like I say, if you're into that kind of thing.

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Subways, Guns, and Kevlar (PROTEST)

Today, I was reading on BoingBoing about Amtrack's decision to employ random bag checks on its trains, something I knew about from being in Penn Station in Manhattan and hearing the announcements. I read through all of the comments, and responded to the last one, with which I disagreed. You can read the entire post and comments here. In my comment (my handle is "realisateur"), I made reference to a particular article from the New York Times that cites the patrol teams that will begin roaming the NYC subways in March with automatic rifles, Kevlar and bullet-resistant vests, and bomb sniffing dogs. This move is terrifying. There is nothing scarier than having a man six feet in front of you fully prepared for war, with gun in hand, and he believes he's already in the warzone, so to speak.

My opinions about this are stated a bit more clearly in my comment on the BB website, so I'm going to include that comment at the end of this post. However, I am issuing a formal invitation to the citizens of New York City to come protest with me on Friday, February 29th, against this fear-monger tactic, the most recent in a long line of them on behalf of the government. I am sick of being told I am living in a terror state. If you or anyone you know is, too, then I would like you/them to join me in exercising our right to tell everyone that we're fed up. You may contact me by e-mail or post here, and I will let you know the details. If you have any suggestions for time, day, or method, I'm more than open to those as well.

Below, my comment on BoingBoing:


I'd like to disagree with you here, on several of your points. First of all, I think New Yorkers and those in nearby areas DO wring their hands in fear. In particular, people who already have anxieties about traveling, be it by plane or by train, are at this point paranoid. The government has not done a good job of responding to 9-11, it has done a good job of implementing measures that have a) the appearance of security and b) the only real value of inconveniencing, making "brown" people afraid, and now even making any civilian scared of crossing police or other law enforcement, for fear of their Constitutional rights being suspended.

In response to the government maybe not having done enough, I would like to point out a New York Times article from February 2nd:

Putting officers on all subway trains, all day long, who are carrying military-grade automatic rifles and bomb dogs only increases security so much. Anyone who wants to come down and blow up the subway can still do it, because they're not afraid of dying. What this does in a larger sense is inspire fear in all those people riding the subway. For instance, I have the right to refuse the search of my bag by the police. However, if the man who is asking me to open my bag has a machine gun, I am going to be disinclined to refuse his request. In fact, I think I might not want to refuse ANY request! And that fear is a real and immoral one.

As for your citation of the loved-ones in London and Madrid, I agree that those people have suffered an unconscionable and irreconcilable loss. However, loss of life never justifies excessive ANYTHING. If we asked them what they thought, their perspective would be severely colored by their experience. This is the same kind of problem we run into when we talk about the Death Penalty and whether it should still exist (and while I'm bringing out that can of worms for reference, I'm NOT opening it. So just put it back in the cupboard, anyone reading this! And I say that with a smile). As for your insistence on pointing out that those attacks were done by "Muslim (yes, Muslim)" people, I think it's important to point out that there is a BIG difference between Muslims and Islamic Fundamentalists. The attacks were perpetrated by Islamic Fundamentalists, not run-of-the-mill Muslims. That kind of pigeon-holing based on rudimentary categorization is what has led us to the racial profiling issues that we're running into today.

I'd imagine there's more I want to say here, and more would be said if this were an actual conversation, and I'm probably missing a point or two that I wanted to make, but I just wanted to make sure I gave my two cents. I really hope you won't look at this as flaming, because I mean my words sincerely and humbly, not as an attack at all. Lucky for us, we get to have this conversation at all.

And if I'm wrong about anything, by all means anyone, feel free to point it out with the same candor I think I've used here.

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Saturday, February 23, 2008


New York City is an interesting place. Despite it's moderate size and EXPANSIVE population, I consistently run into people I haven't seen in ages in random places on the street. For instance, one day I watched a train go past and in a frontward car, saw a guy I hadn't seen since my Freshman or Sophomore year of college. When I actually got onto that subway train, I walked headlong into a man I'd just met weeks prior in Los Angeles on a film shoot... he had just moved to New York that day.

Even weirder is when one encounters such a phenomenon with strangers. For instance, one night in Midtown I was waiting for the subway and noticed a very pretty and probably drunk Asian woman. I observed her weaving around a bit, aimlessly, and thought nothing of her when I got on the train. The following night, down in Soho, I crossed paths with her on the street. I didn't say anything, wouldn't have had anything to say, but I was stunned by the freak nature of it.

And, my favorite one of all, (and all of these seems to orient themselves around the subway, but I have had others that are completely out of that context), a week or so ago I was waiting for the train in TriBeCa, leaving work, and I encountered an actor I recognized from Buffalo 66. I didn't know his name, but I thought it was fun to see him. Then, two nights ago at the cinema in TriBeCa, the Angelika, he sat DIRECTLY BEHIND ME for the screening of The Diving Bell and the Butterfly. I did some research. His name is Kevin Corrigan and he's actually done a bunch of work, some of which I've seen.

The fact is, there is something in this universe, some energy we are all constantly projecting, and I think that sometimes those energies become entangled and like satellites and binary stars, we get caught in each other's gravity, and bump into each other at random on the street, or even several times in different places. It's a peculiar and wonderful phenomenon.


Dems are your best friends

Barack totally loves me.

Hillary's a good gal.


Friday, February 22, 2008

Horrible People

At most, I've been feeling rather tepid about these internet serials on such sites as My Damn Channel and Super Deluxe. They all fall short of the comedy mark (although I read in the New York Times that for Super Deluxe, the goal is not straight-up comedy so much as odd-ball pursuit of personal interests on behalf of the creators, with which I can't take issue). While this one doesn't have me laughing out loud, I think the new Fauxp Opera "Horrible People" on My Damn Channel is, at the very least, worth checking out for a chuckle or two. It takes the curiously hyper-responsive attitude of Stella or Wainy Days characters and supplants it into the schema of Soap Opera language. In Soap Operas, this sense of comedy seems very much at home, as these two are not really distant cousins, but more like brothers.

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Dang. You know, the world is really going to shit. I read about it every day and it confuses and disheartens me. But then I see this, and the world seems alright:

(if this one isn't enough, be sure to watch the other videos of his that are linked after the video is over)

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Phillip Roebuck

I saw this fella last night on the subway, and I tell you what, I didn't even want to catch my train. Tons of people swarmed around him, mesmerized by his one-man-band performance. When he broke a string, people took the opportunity to throw money in his little box. When a song was over, they paid him. When the trains arrived, they paid him. I have never seen a street/subway performer make nearly as much as he did in the ten or so minutes that I watched him play. The videos on his site don't do him much justice, although I do like this one.


Thursday, February 21, 2008

Say it, Frenchie

Here's a dose of French people doing stuff. Or, at least, French music. It's all pretty sweet.


-Awesome YouTube video for "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger"-

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Monday, February 18, 2008

Mario vs. Quantum Physics

I think it's no surprise that videogames can be considered in philosophical terms. In fact, anyone who plays videogames, I think, has some kind of philosophical thought process going on in the background, directly related to the game(s) being played. So, when I found this video and accompanying explanation of Many-Worlds Interpretation, the concept of many different worlds existing, branching off of a single moment of quantum decision so to speak, I thought it was a fun and simple way to be introduced to the concept. Enjoy!

And, as a bonus, this video reminded me of a video I'd watched a year or so ago that was, luckily, linked in the related-videos section, so it's included here:

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Sunday, February 17, 2008

Kanye, Kanye...

This man has been doing some wild and crazy stuff with his career lately, spanning different genres and making sick (as in, AWESOME) videos. I wish wish wish I could embed this video just because I want its prettiness running in my site, but alas embedding was disabled for it. Just have to link to it.


Friday, February 15, 2008


I was reading a post on BoingBoing that made mention of Objectivism, a philosophical belief that I knew absolutely nothing about. I'd never even heard of it before. So I checked it out. It's very dense and I'm still trying to wrap my head around the reading, but I find this Wikipedia entry very interesting. Let me know what you think.

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Thursday, February 14, 2008

FISA loves you

Courtesy of Mark Fiore, the following cartoon would be funny. If it weren't true.

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Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Lori Nix

Check out the luscious photography of Lori Nix, who stages dioramas of destruction, grandeur, and other extravagant scenes and photographs them to create startling, pleasureful, and eerie imagery.

A behind-the-scenes video about her work.

Lori's official site

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Down with Scientology!

Dear Scientology,

You're fucked.


That is a summary in letter-form of the video declaration that the internet group "Anonymous" has posted to YouTube. The group has decided to systematically dismantle the Church of Scientology due to its unchecked litigious outbursts and its overall attack on the well-being of mankind. Already across the country there have been protests, particularly in LA, hosted by people wearing among other things, V for Vendetta masks. The protests were at the behest of Anonymous.

The following link is to a very well-articulated article about the whole mess, and below that is the "Message to Scientology."

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Senate be damned!

It is yet another blasphemous day in the now almost 8 years of blasphemy under the Bush administration. The Senate has decided to let telecom companies that spied on AMERICAN CITIZENS remain immune to litigation. Translation: It is OK to spy on people who pay for their telephone service. That means you, buddy. But don't worry: It's all in the name of national security. You'll be safer now that they can listen to your telephone calls. Because then people won't talk about you behind your back, right? Thanks, government! I owe you one.

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Monday, February 11, 2008

A letter to your future self

At last! An internet-based time capsule that has personal relevance!! We always wish that we could go back in time and stop ourselves from doing something stupid. But time travel still doesn't exist, so deal with it. On the other hand, we're constantly telling our FUTURE selves things of various import - don't forget to feed the particular animal that you have in your home; you should go to the doctor and get this rash checked out; X's girlfriend's name is Y, so don't call her Z when you go to her house for dinner; and so on. But maybe you want to write a more personal note to yourself? Something special, something from the depths of your heart, sole, or psyche that you're afraid will get lost in the mix of the everyday. If that's the case, then look no further than Dear Future Me.


Classics ala Spongebob

Oh man, tons-o-fun.

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Saturday, February 09, 2008


I am speechless, and unable to talk about the reasons behind my speechlessness. I am beyond conflicted.

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Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Bowed Piano

Stephen Scott does something interesting. It's not entirely unique at its foundation... classical composers have experimented with playing the piano strings directly, putting metal pins in the hammers, etc. But never before have 10 people played one piano. Until now.


Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Born Free

I stumbled upon this video very randomly. My dad used to sing this song to me, a much more subdued version, when I was a kid, to put me to bed. There were other songs in the medley that he would sing, accompanied by his acoustic guitar. At the moment, the only other I can think of is Moon River.

Sleep well.


Monday, February 04, 2008

Yuri Moriguchi

Yuri Moriguchi has learned to blend two very different, but inherently and undeniably related, Japanese art forms: Japanese painting and Manga. His paintings in my opinion are startling in their eroticism, and calming in their formal qualities. He is at once shocking and impressive. Ok, no more adjectives. Now YOU try.

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Sunday, February 03, 2008

Free Literature!

I'm SO excited. Today, by happenstance, I found TWO websites that host free audiobooks! They're all Creative Commons licensed, free, and I wish i'd discovered them two months ago before I drove cross-country and back.


Free the Media!! Free the World!!


Friday, February 01, 2008

Frozen in Time

In the book "Einstein's Dreams," countless scenarios of time-space are hashed and analyzed poetically, beautifully. One of the worlds is a world of frozen time, where the closer to the epicenter of this timequake one gets, the slower time moves. Those caught at the center are frozen forever in a single instant. What would this mean? What would it be like? To be caught in a beautiful moment forever? A sad one?

207 people got together for some fun. The group, "Improv Everywhere," has done some great stuff that is really nothing short of performance art. Unfortunately, I can't embed this video but I can link to it. This video is so awesome! I got chills, was super stoked by it. Wish I could have partaken.ENJOY.

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I talk a lot about capitalism and its downsides, my distaste for it, and some advantages that the future could hold if it were to see a cashless society. This fellow is doing something pretty ballsy that I admire, all in support of a moneyless society that he hopes to someday be a part of:

Mark Boyle talks/walks.

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Human Rights violation

This report is staggering. It is my firm opinion that certain sects of the Islamic world are absolute lunatics, barbarians. This is a blatant admission that "information" is the real enemy to Islamic fundamentalism, because it is the spreading of NOTHING MORE THAN information that has earned a man my age the death sentence. If that were true everywhere, I would have been dead years ago.

BoingBoing's coverage of the story linked here.

I encourage you to sign the petition for his release at this link.

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