Sunday, August 26, 2007

Sunday smorgasbord

Okay, now that I've cleaned out my months-collected links, I've now decided to do (kinda) weekly links. Here they are, in all their maddening and splendid glory:

No. 1 Link of the Week:
Hipster Olympics

tied with the other No. 1 link of the week:
Table 70, which is my pal Matt's bimonthly music 'podiocast'. I'm currently listening to the entry "1993 Was a Good Year," and indeed, by the sound of things, it really was. Hooray for TLC, is what I'm sayin'.

Unreal Pencil Carvings

Richard Sweeney has stupidcrazy art talents. He seems to be the M. C. Escher of our generation.

Cardboard Cop Slows Speedsters -- sneaky, but a great idea.

Angel Ceballos is so inspiring to me, it hurts. The following are some of my favorite works of hers, from her Flickr photoset:

Magdalene Veen

another Magdalene Veen

Samantha Klapp

Karen and Nate

Magdalene Veen once more

This is hilarious, and I'm also slightly embarrassed to admit this makes my mouth water:
Minnesota State Fair on a Stick

Such a nifty thing:
Book of Ingenious Devices, published 850 CE

The Automata of Rhodes
According to Pindar, one of the nine lyric poets of ancient Greece, the isle of Rhodes was known for its displays of mechanical engineering, particularly automata, which apparently were a specialty of the Rhodians. Pindar said this in his seventh Olympic Ode:

"The animated figures stand
Adorning every public street
And seem to breathe in stone, or
move their marble feet."

Trippy, huh?

Because I lovelovelove the site Do What Now?:
We are zee Five Kabobeteers, no?
Leave the grilling to the high-waisted men, Timmy

Via Indexed:
I hated gym.

Senju Kannon
From the site: "A once-in-a-year event in Japan. 24 hours of TV, a lot of artists, a lot of events, and the funds are all for charity and the disabled. This is the show of the 'Senju Kannon': The 1000-hands goddess of Mercy."

Newsweek: China Regulates Buddhist Reincarnation: um, what?

Great Shadow Puppetry via Metacafe

"Garbage Masters" Amazing Trick Shots -- very definitely amazing.

Garbage - Androgyny: such a fun video! I'm a big fan of the concept of androgyny myself -- I was sporting neckties WELL before Avril whatserface was doing her thing, that lousy poseur. Grr.

Mouse In My Pants! via LP Cover Lover
This is just so wrong for just so many reasons.

Disgustingly Rich! via LP Cover Lover
Gotta love the mink-lined bathtub.

And just when you thought the mink madness couldn't possibly get any worse:

de l'amour et de l'argent via LP Cover Lover

O dear god no, Uggs and Crocs have mated and spawned a hybrid! NOOOOOOOOO....
Cruggs? via Boing Boing

Tunnel via the random collections

tumbleweed -- wait a sec, tumbleweed ISN'T native to the U.S.? Huh.

Because I am a bit of a typography dork:
i love typography

And finally, because xkcd (Randall Munroe) is a mad genius:
Interesting Life

Whew. Back to unpacking.

Monday, August 20, 2007

where I don’t quote The Police. At all.

Man Meets Wife Via Message in a Bottle

I love random things like the above; seriously, what are the odds of meeting somebody really nifty via a message in a bottle? Or, for that matter, via a Post-It Note left on a sidewalk? Or, if you want to be superrandom, how about a wrong phone number, where you never intended to meet anybody new at all? I had a dream two nights ago where I misdialed a number, and a guy at the other end answered, "Hello, how may I help you on this maddening and splendid evening?" I don't remember much else beyond that, sadly, but it reinforced my sense of fun about chance meetings. Also, I will now answer the phone that way after dark, no matter who calls. You can test me on this.

Also also, I remember that I got a phone call during my freshman year at Michigan from a random guy, who said he lived in Ann Arbor and was just dialing around because he was bored and looking for fun people to talk to. I was in a rush at the time, so I didn't stop to chat, but afterward he apparently worked his way through my entire dorm (South Quad, for you nosybodies), ultimately talking for an hour or so with my friend Marla, who lived a floor below me. And whom I just saw last night for the first time in six years. Which is what got me started thinking about random connectivity in the first place.

This reminds me, I've always had a bit of an obsession with dreaming about a conversation with a friend, and then continuing that conversation with the same friend after waking up and seeing them in reality. The key here is that the friend has to have had the identical dream, so I know We Shared Something. I even did a little photo class project about this in my final year at Michigan, which turned out splendidly, thank you very much.

Back to random connectivity: you gotta love a mistyped e-mail address. About a month before New Orleans was hit by Katrina, I received an e-mail from the Chemistry department at Tulane University. The woman who wrote the e-mail told me that my paycheck was ready to be picked up or mailed, whichever I preferred, and it was clearly not a spam hoax. After noodling around on Google for a bit, I realized that there is a Dr. Astrid Phillips in the field of chemistry, and clearly she must have done a little academic song and dance over at Tulane. Ethical person that I am, it never occurred to me to say, "Sure, send me the moolah pronto!" Instead, I informed the lady of her error , and she apologized, saying she had left off a single letter from the e-mail address, and she thanked me for my patience.

Which reminds me, I may start an Astrid Phillips club. You can only be a member if your name is Astrid Phillips, and I already know (thanks to Google) that there will definitely be more than just a couple of members, difficult as that may be to believe. We will get together every once in a while, drinking tea and discussing highbrow matters. Maybe we'll even get manicures, and then go rob a bank. That would be awesome.

And hey, let's not overlook random Googling, as in the phenomenal case of Rory Blyth. Call me a romantic, or call me a person in need of serious therapy, but this really warms the cockles of my heart. And I'm sure we all know that a cockle is an edible, burrowing bivalve mollusk with a strong ribbed shell (thank you, Oxford American Dictionary OSX widget), so you know I'm serious.

Getting back to Marla, because it always comes back to Marla: I finally got to see her (and her charming man) last night, and I find it fascinating how comfortable it all was. I mean, I hadn't seen her in about six years, and when we grabbed dinner last night, it was like the intervening years had never happened. Amazing what a comfy friendship fit can do. We had met during freshman orientation, where we shared an instant bond because we both loved "Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman," and there you are. She just took the bar exam a couple of weeks ago, and now she's at Disneyland.

I haven't done anything random today yet, but let's see what I can cook up.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

my new order

There is something very satisfying about moving into a new living space, putting everything where it seems to belong, cataloging one's life in an orderly fashion. Also, after waiting years to find Moroccan-print tapestries in hot pink, orange, and lavender, as well as area rugs in punch-your-eyes-out pink for $20, Madame Destiny heeded my call and made them both available at my local Target yesterday.

I'm the last person to believe that giant, faceless corporations can bring me happiness, but as embarrassing as this is to admit, they do sometimes hit the nail squarely on the head.

Also, I have a hankering for pain au chocolat, so I'm going to venture forth to procure same. I love living in this era, where a woman can get pastry whenever she likes without having to be chaperoned. Yes, my brain is still stuck on "Becoming Jane," and I have to say, as dreadful as this time seems to be in terms of the economy dying and the environment finishing us off, thank goodness I'm still free to do more or less what I like. Eating pain au chocolat, for example. Or listening to Bryan Ferry right now (which I am -- don't! Stop! Don't stop the dance!). Or staying in touch with people across the planet just by looking at a screen and pressing a few keys, sending photos and movies and links to midget porn.

I guess with great innovations come great prices. Me, I'll be grabbing what I can before my bones turn to pure mercury and the rest of me is devoured by hyperintelligent gray goo, which will hopefully happen before the Internet is purchased by Rupert Murdoch (oh, wait, he already technically owns my blog, huh) and I'm tossed into solitary at Gitmo for not being American enough.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

on having a life

I've amassed yet another Lump o' Media Goodness over the past few months or so, which I've laid out below for your clicking enjoyment. I really need to get out more. Oh, wait, I saw "Becoming Jane" today, which made me all sorts of weepy and peevish, and then I went to Ross and bought random-yet-necessary housewares. Yes, folks, I AM Ms. Friday Night Madness.

This weekend will be nuts, though, because I'll be seeing a play directed by a friend, and then hanging out with my friend Marla WHOM I HAVEN'T SEEN IN YEARS, since she'll be vacationing in LA with her fabulous man for a few days. Also, "Fool Me Once" will be screening at Cinespace in Hollywood on Sunday evening, sometime between 6pm and 8pm; if you haven't seen my cinematography on a big(ger) screen yet, come on by.

So, yeah, I still have a life. I'm just sayin'.

10 Jobs You Can Do If You're A Blogger -- because I heart yongfook.

Think of England (1999) -- defining Englishness, whatever that means.

Catherine Tate: Lauren - Periodic snarky student ever.

Alanis Morissette "My Humps" video -- sad and eerie, and very well done.

Mute Math - "Typical" -- plays well with reverse filming.

Le Mont Solaire -- hooray for giant sun dials as art!

Lego camera!

Game developers: get a clue -- I agree with this 100%.

Root beer float cookies!

Save snowflakes forever!

Furniture from Weapons -- godawful but still mesmerizing.

Hugh MacLeod's How to Be Creative -- because this guy rocks.

Cool Hunter: Inspiration Nation -- a terrific almost-manifesto

If Crack Dealers Took Lessons From Walgreens, They Really Would Be Rich -- this blew my mind

RED CROSS mobile billboard -- brilliance

Medieval Cookery -- "A Dishe of Artechokes" looks really good!

Moon-bison and other 19th C. pranks

The best hoax pharma site ever!

SkyMaul -- sheer fabulosity.

BBC: The Lyrebird -- it starts off slowly, but just keep watching. It's a bird that can mimic, among other things, cameras, car alarms, and chain saws. Only imagine.

CYRK: Unicyclist with Derby (by Hubert Hilscher) -- beautiful. I love wacky vintage crap.

Oh no, it's The Beatniks! A mutinous generation! Wrought with suppressed emotions!

Exploding Head Syndrome -- boy, I sure hate when that happens.

B inside TV animated cartoon "S.P.I.C." -- I LOVE watching people draw in fast motion, especially when they're actually okay at it. It reminds me of Sesame Street, when a hand would enter frame and draw an elaborate scene, which would then magically come to life. If you can find me a YouTube of that, I'll give you a cookie.

"Olde English: Sad, Drunk 15 Year-Old" "Is that how you feel?" "If push-ups were cuddles and sharks were you...." You'll have to sit through some military propaganda before watching this, but it'll be worth it.

Cold War Kids: "Hang Me Up to Dry" -- Shot like European 60's neorealism! Startlingly stylish.

The ecstasy of influence: A plagiarism by Jonathan Lethem -- about the fragmentary cultural consciousness we see in all media. Definitely an eye-opener.

Thrill to the gloriously mad art of Jesse Lefkowitz!

Humanity Lobotomy -- a brief history of the Internet, and how the Web as we know it may die rather soon, in a very bloody battle indeed over net neutrality.

True Blue -- brilliantly hilarious.

Cheapest Eyeglasses in the World -- I'm never getting mine in the US again.

Tokyo Summerland wave pool makes me ill on behalf of humanity.

College Will Kill Your Entrepreneurial Spirit While Simultaneously Turning You Into a Worker Bee -- pretty much says it all.

The Dollar Dreadful Family Library -- for fans of eccentric Victoriana.

Damn Interesting: Raiders of the Lost Lake -- all about Lake Vostok, which is a nifty discovery.

meish dot org: Facebook and the Perils of Prodigious Sociability Welcome to my life.

WikiMedia: Infinite Descent (I just learned what a Shepard Tone is, I feel so smart now.)

Fifteen Unfortunately-Placed Ads -- I always love these.

Jessica the Hippo -- the adorablest thing ever!

The Bond of St. Marcel -- a graphic novel to be released in 2008, written by fellow USC alumna Jenn Quintenz!

Retro Thing: Make Better Home Movies -- Super 8 Tutorial Film -- it's very slowly-paced, but everything they say is truly a nugget of wisdom for every filmmaker. I especially like the line "[e]arly morning- and late evening-light can be enchanting." Truer words were never spoken.

Thomas Edison Hates Cats -- I had no idea Edison helped cook up (ick, sorry) the electric chair. This may or may not be true, but it's a heckuva rumor to perpetuate, so now I'm helping.

To quote myself: You may now returned to your regularly scheduled life.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Because I read an insane amount online every day

I can't sleep, so instead I would like to share with you the highlights of my Web surfing from the past several months. Enjoy! And good luck with the resulting migraines/psychotherapy.

Art / Design / Performance

Men With Beards
I laughed! I cried! It was better than "Cats"!

Top 13 Most Expensive Cell Phones
Horrible! Disgusting! They represent all that is wrong with capitalism! Can I have one?

Gramaphone Styled CD Player
Silly yet brilliant.

The Kowal Portable Typewriter and Adding Machine
The best customization of a laptop I've ever seen.

girl with phone, looking beatified -- I find this oddly compelling, like a 13th-century Madonna Minus Child painting.

my friend Sarah Goff saw beautiful things in Italy
Really. She did.

"Thriller" as performed by inmates of the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation center
Alarmingly terrific.

phenomenal artist Stella Im Hultberg
Oh my.

Damn Interesting: Tesla's Tower of Power
Tesla, how I love you so, especially as portrayed by David Bowie, ahem.

Harry Grant Dart: Picturesque America
The retrofuture of Times Square.

Stephane Halleux
So incredibly inventive, my goodness.

Royal de Luxe
The greatest macropuppeteers ever.

Love Letter to Condi
Incredibly tender ode to the lady.


S.A.M, the Sesame Street Robot (video)
A terrific recap of freaky children's programming.

Glazastik. The New Internet Hero
This has a late-90s-Internet hokey delight to it.

The Checkered Career of the Wooden Honey Stick
Very diverting.


Watermelon-Flavored Sigmund Freud Head Pops
I mean, why not?

Wacky News

A Man Flies 193 Miles in Lawn Chair
Just because you can doesn't mean you should, but I applaud his gumption and moxie at any rate.

A Gate-Crasher's Change of Heart
The most civilized talking-down of a criminal I've ever heard of.


If You Don't Have the Balls to Be Hated, Then You Don't Deserve to Be Loved
Amen, Violent Acres. Amen.

Sicko inspires grassroots action in Dallas cinema
I love that film can still spur people to action, it gives me hope yet for the future of humanity.

AlterNet: Neocons on a Cruise: What Conservatives Say When They Think We Aren't Listening
Remember what I said about having hope for humanity? Gone.

Kids in Guinea study under airport lamps
Oh, lookee! My hope for humanity just came back!

IBM Guidelines Govern Virtual Employees
And it's gone again. Fcking outrageous.


Picking the Right Hospital Can Save Your Life
Sigh. Definitely need to think about this.


Pirates Knocked Up Shrek
Unintended or not, I still love this.

Strip Polka!
Life simply does not get any better than this." target="new">Web zen: illusion zen

LSD not necessary.

XKCD: Chesscoaster
Thank goodness for XKCD. He is fabulous.

Ze Frank's History o' Underwear
Oh boy.