--2009.01.29; I kind of angstily doodled this in the iPhone app "sketches" during the meeting they were announcing layoffs. (Though I didn't know what my fate was at that point.)
Commuting with a work laptop has caused me to stop carrying around my tablet PC, but lately I've been longing for an electronic doodlepad I'd have on me all the time (preferably with some super-easy way of adding doodles to my "of the Moment" blog). An iPhone being poked at with a finger lacks the finesse even my clumsy style needs, but I have hopes for the Pogo stylus that has gotten some good reviews. (If that doesn't pan out, I might look at Colors! for the homebrew DS.)
"We judge ourselves by what we feel capable of doing, while others judge us by what we have already done." --Henry Wadsworth LongfellowThunderboomers! (That word is so cute, almost to the point of cutesy. Is it a New England thing or more widespread?)
http://www.retrocomedy.com/2009/07/15-creepiest-vintage-ads-of-all-time.html - hyper creepy ads from back in the day
http://mikelynchcartoons.blogspot.com/2009/06/200-characters-from-dick-tracy-1931.html - awesome 200 Dick Tracy b+w characters!
http://www.politicsdaily.com/2009/06/22/obama-signstobacco-bill/ - banning clove cigarettes? Fuck the government! "won't somebody think of the children??" my soon to be libertarian ass. Seriously, this is nanny state crap at its worse, not to mention arguably discriminatory against Indonesia. God DAMN this ticks me off, and I barely ever smoke anything.
3 George Washington Tidbits from Mt. Vernon and some reading after: * "A hundd. thousand men coming one after another cannot move a Ton weight; but the united strength of 50 would transport it with ease." --letter to William Gordon, 1783. Interesting he picked on the number 50, the current # of states... * "A glass of wine and a bit of mutton are always ready, and such as will be content to partake of them are always welcome. Those who expect more will be disappointed." * Washington was a slaveholder, albeit somewhat more enlightened than some of his peers. One of the men had the name "'Slamming' Joe", which by 1799 standards is a hella cool name.
--OK, this is kind of silly but for the longest time I sort of assumed Burt Reynolds and Tom Selleck were, like, the same person. So I built this quiz to see if it was just me, or what, but now without trying to cheat I can get it kind of easily.
If you take it please post your score in the comments.
Coming up - fireworks! But first: EB's and his new baby, henceforth known as "EBB2":
So Amber and I decided to kayak the Charles for fireworks - we were joined by much more experienced kayakers rhysara and c1, who had their own equipment (AND HOW - Rhysara managed to get all her luggage on her monstrous beast of a craft:)
Last year I noted "Hmm. 34 years old and I'll still veer off my path to steer towards a pigeon for a bit..." -- apparently you can add a year to 34, and change the pigeon to "swimming geese"...
I worry that not enough of the composition class has stuck with me, or else I would have seen this lovely arch of a bridge as a framing device rather than just notice by accident after: (And maybe hold the camera straight for once)
Getting near the fireworks site we found this lovely beast of a pontoon highrise homebrew craft. Braver souls than I!
Rhysara asked that I make a LJ-icon-able photo including the bow of a kayak and the fireworks... a challenge, since the fireworks were usually high up. This is the best I could do, though I think the square cropping should still be interesting:
So finally, notes to my future self should I do this again:
If you're wavering about the hoody (being too warm at first, but useful if an evening chill sets in) wear it now, unless the day is truly sweltering.
It's a bit over 4 1/2 miles each way. So get paddlin'!
You do need food, but not that much food...
The strategy of not drinking too much so as to avoid emergency port-a-lot trips to shore is a good one.
Yes the anchor is super handy. Ideally with about 100 feet of line but a bit less will do.
Anchors should ALWAYS be tied to the bow, not the stern, and if you're clever, look how the big boats are pulling from their anchor to figure out which way you'll be facing. HOWEVER - if you are facing directly into the fireworks, you are at risk for having a lot of smoke and ash blown in your face.
So yesterday I went up to Maine to visit with Jane who was "in town" (relative to Ann Arbor, at least) for he folks' 50th Anniversary. Eventually though we slipped away to Old Orchard beach and its pretty awesome Palace Playland...
That's a ride we considered but didn't try... they use a combination system where you can get an all-day pass or use tickets. The latter works out to about $3.45 - $4.60 a ride, which seems like a lot, but probably compares favorably to what you get to go on at a six flags, and it's nice to have the option.
Probably not 100% smart to be taking photos then, but hey. Just to play with rearranging that, getting the horizons about level...
Jane didn't quite feel ready for the "Power Surge", so here I am on it, up, up...
Old Orchard Beach is interesting to me... I heard about quite a lot when I was in Cleveland because the Salvation Army has Camp Meetings there, though I never went to them. Currently the town is a mix of visiting Canadians (so it's generally French-language friendly) and bikers.
On the beach Jane found a ringing cellphone... turns out some guy had left it there by mistake, so we were able to do our good deed for the day and return it to him, over by the place where they sell the famous "pier fries", so a win all around.
And they have a lovely old pier, with a bunch of food stalls and bars over it.
Finally, on my own way home, the setting sun was doing interesting things to the clouds.
Baseball gloves really seem kind of oversized and comical when you stop to think about 'em.
http://www.pinsane.com/pinorama/events/MJ_09/kr/michael_jackson_arcade_entry.html - old news, but man... MJ's arcade panoramically.
"Man has to suffer. When he has no real afflictions, he invents some." --Jose MartiHaha, I misremembered bing.com as "bling.com" and had to google for "microsofts new search engine" (thought it might be better search for "distance between boston and chicago")
"Everybody lies, but it doesn't matter because nobody listens." --Nick Diamos"Perhaps [...] the secret to a good life is finding the balance between [near-term and long-term thinking], the rhythm that brings harmony to the different timescales at which we live." -- A Discover piece on the loveliness of the wandering mind.At my computer I unwrap a flatbread sandwich, and in comes the cat, probably hoping for a bite. 'Well,' I think to myself, 'look what the cat dragged in' and then smack myself.
http://strangerthaneviction.tumblr.com - "landlord of the flies"
7-11 has these great tiny 3.6 oz Ben+Jerry's micropints (I'd seen 'em at a hotel in Denver) - fewer calories than a Snickers, SO much more satisfying
It makes me irritated that I'm not a better photographer, though it's not like I've really worked ALL that much at it, and then there's my refusal to get used to a better camera than the Canon point-and-shoots.
In general, I think it IS more about the composition than, say, the lens, but there are times when I realize the limitations of the raw images I'm taking. (Also I would say that the new Canon automatic modes are significantly smarter than the previous ones.)
I recently bought a copy of "Photoshop Elements" and a book, because I think a lot of what I find visually compelling in photographs beyond composition is done in the virtual darkroom; (like some of the light and texture in this portrait) I need to better understand color and saturation and things like that, tough because right now they seem kind of nebulous to me.
http://www.csmonitor.com/2009/0624/p09s02-coop.html - CSM editorial on how gender balance might have helped ward off the worst of the financial meltdown.
Added 9 photos to my family and friends photo project http://kirkjerk.com/2009/06/02/ - 26 in all, feeling a bit surrounded!
Fire! It is what we can doing we hope. No fear. Not ourselves. Say quietly to all people coming up down everywhere a prayer. Always is a clerk. He is assured of safety by expert men who are in the bar for telephone for the fighters of the fire come out. --notice posted in the hallways of a Florence, Italy, hotel (via Bill the Splut)My "!psyched" mp3 playlist - 27 songs - energetic, familiar music for working to, now a great anti-slack tool I don't utilize enough.
Wish I could get every damn spellchecker in my life to not fix lowercase to upper-That's a grammar 'mistake' I choose to make, not spelling
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=why-do-we-swear - swearing cam mitigate pain - it seems amazing to me that cussing is neurologically distinctive. It's almost as if we had swearing before we had language...
Sox enter the All-Star break 3 games ahead of the Yankees and with the best record in the AL. Dig it!
I just sent Amber a jokey one word txt: *hic*. Luckily I caught iPhone trying to autocorrect that to *HIV*.
Loveblender.com couplet: "Such a dirty girl filled with dark desires. My saliva isn't enough to put out your sexual fire." Oy.
--Oh good GOSH is that brilliant... their youtube page shows that this is a whole series...
what a fantastic way of pointing out the silliness of the low rent rhetoric that DC and the news networks are swamped with.
"Operationally, God is beginning to resemble not a ruler but the last fading smile of a cosmic Cheshire cat." --Sir Julian HuxleyThe Point-of-view gun is a device created by Douglas Adams for the movie version of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy; it does not appear in any of the previous versions of the story. According to the film, the gun was created by Deep Thought prior to its long pondering of the Answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything. When used on someone, it will cause them to see things from the point of view of the person firing the gun. - - had never heard of this but I love the idea.
"Sugar, your thighs are hives of honey, and I am the Bumble Bee of Love" -- new Blender of Love!
--A note of passing:
WBCN is going away. I wasn't here in Boston early enough, or generally cool enough, to really get some of its big milestones, or how it will be missed. Post-divorce, I found Howard Stern in the morning weirdly cathartic, and then it always seemed strange to be the place to go for Patriots radio broadcasts...
Anyway, I've recently had my interest reawakened in the cartoonist Shary Flenniken, especially her Trots and Bonnie, and its fun kind of Little-Nemo-in-Slumberland-tinged sexiness. This caused me to try emailing her, and we've corresponded a little.
(A lovely mild thrill when an artist you've seen in mainstream, non-virtual publications turns out to be accessible via e-mail and happy to chat a bit! It reminds me of my dad's scheme to send self-addressed postcards to authors asking whether they sign and send back their own works mailed to them... the trick with the postcard was, very often he'd get at least a signature on the card, even if they declined to autograph the work.)
She mentioned a DVD with medium-quality scans of all the National Lampoon issues, so I ordered that, in part to see her work, and in part to see if I could find an issue I remember finding semi-stashed away by my dad... (Turns out it was the December 1982 issue. I was probably attracted by the big ET lampoon on the cover, but it was the mildly lascivious (you know what? Livacious should TOTALLY be a word) pseudo-centerfold of Mrs. Clause reclining in front of horny elves (as Santa was making his rounds) that has stuck in my mind 26 years later.)
Anyway, this advertisement is from the December 1980 issue of National Lampoon. (I'm not sure if it was a localized ad or if it appeared nationwide.) Reading the old magazines is weird, the mix of cigarette, booze, stereo, and cologne ads is so different from today's world that sometimes I'm not sure which ads were real and which were the parodies. (Plus that mention that 70s habit of ads with big paragraphs of text. I kind of like that, actually. I think the style lasted longer in the UK.)
I don't know if this is supposed to be Megatron and a feminized Starscream (which given the kind of gay-subtext top/bottom relationship they seem to have in the cartoon is kind of funny) or "Star Ruby", one of the fan-created female Decepticons.
"If ants had nuclear weapons, they would probably end the world in a week." --Journey to the Ants, Bert Holldobler & Edward O. Wilson
My entry for Klik of the Month #25 -- I made the screen a bit too big to post in place here. Arrow keys move, z and x fire and jump.
Falls a bit under "failed experiments", especially how some of the blocks are still flying upward, but at least I got around the feel of what I had been aiming for. Inspired by BoingBoing Offworld's coverage of Puit Wars.
The way deleted youtube videos still have a preview still is both a cruel tease and an important marker of what was.
Those weird nighttime thoughts of how weird it is to be. And how someday, to be no longer.
Or, god wiling, to be old; to be living in largely in the past tense. Am I living enough now to feel good about it later?
Future self, I swear on all that's holy I'm doing the best I possibly can.
Or maybe not, but you wouldn't've done much better, you old coot!
http://www.doublex.com/section/arts/changing-my-shape-learning-hindi - how learning Hindi remolded her mind, some of the changes seemed interesting, others disturbing in terms of gender roles.
iPhone timezone support is so retarded. If you forgot to manually set the timezone and started putting in appointments, you're hosed.
Ok, so it's nice that I can synch to Exchange at work. But iPhone- first calendar "red", second "orange? Your rainbow-love makes for bad UI!
--Meant to post this Saturday, the date of the last Klik of the Month Klub. This is a "Let's Play" video from one of the best games of the previous KotMK. (Let's Play videos are where someone narrates their experience finding out about a new game... usually not so over the top as this one. They are good ways of finding out about new games without the stress of finding and downloading and getting into them yourself, kind of like less judgmental game reviews.)
The voice is a bit goofy but that is mostly just mirroring the amazing old-time goofiness of the original game.
Volvo in front of me on way to work with round white pseudo-EU stickers "I <3 WTM" and "<3 MV". Yay ambiguous support!
I'm not sure if I'd ever order "mint flavored coffee", but drinking iced coffee around Orbit "Mint Mojito" gum is surprisingly tasty.
Starting a sentence in the subject and completing in the message body is a bit wrong headed, some readers break the flow of how it was typed.
Smugness in getting a 5 pack of GE low-watt bulbs is mitigated by them being a box of 5- with each in its own box- each inside another box.
Bathroom reading! Some people find it disgusting. For others it's a small pleasure of life, a refuge from the tumult of day to day existence.
Recently I decided to press the reset button on the material I had at hand in there... My bathroom library was as follows:
Loadstar (old C=64 magazine-on-disk) catalog
The Book of Sequels
Cooking for Dummies
Penny Arcade 2: Epic Legends of the Magic Sword Kings
Edge Presents The 100 Best Video Games
WWII From Here to Eternity (WW2 as drawn and painted by soldiers)
The Photographer's Manual
Tufts University ("College History Series")
My New Filing Technique is Unstoppable
Discussion and Interaction in the Academic Community (Aunt's)
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas Player's Guide
Clerks: The Lost Scene (Comic)
Clerks: Holiday Special (Comic)
The Illustrated History of WWII
Adobe Photoshop Elements 7: Maximum Performance
My I Kiss You on the Lips, Miss Sandra?
5 copies of Wired
8 copies of Game Informer
Hardcore Gamer Magazine
Fashion Rocks (think this was bundled with a Wired)
It wasn't quite as much as it might look like here, two neat stacks standing on edge. The preponderence of WW2 and video game stuff is due in part to the proximity of their normal bookshelf to the bathroom. (Also it's stuff that's interesting in small doses.)
Any volunteers to describe their bathroom library in the comments? Or is it still all just old Calvin and Hobbes and Bloom Counties?
(As for the "ick" and "well I'm never borrowing a book from HIM" factors... I dunno. I suspect if you start going down the road of uptightness beyond washing your hands after using the bathroom, it's a slippery slope to starting to freak out how many insect bits per gallon are allowed in foods, or about the eyebrow mites we all carry, or the intestinal bacteria that help us all out, and 1,000 other ways where things we think of as relatively pristine are really quite icky.)
Random anecdote: my dad grew up rural enough to remember some places where the Sears Roebuck catalog served as a combination of toilet paper and reading material (maybe for an outhouse at the cousins' farm?) There was a specified order to which sections of the catalog got torn out first; I think it started with shoes.
Trees and grass are looking so green. Is that because all the rainwater "lets" them be, or they desperately reaching to use any sun they can?
After a spring and half a summer of sandals, socks and shoes (for a business meeting) feels like swaddling clothes.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=231hnz3EDwg - The Horribly Slow Murderer with the Extremely Inefficient Weapon
Thirteen Ways of Looking at the Arrest of Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
From half a mile away
In Central Square
Where police still hang
After headquarters moved
Because they are called here eventually
And they like that Italian place I go to.
The unused tricycle.
And the occupied holding cell.
If he really said
"I'll speak to you your momma outside,"
That would be the best part.
On top of a hill called "Class"
Looking at another hill called "Race."
Or the other way around.
It is hard to tell which hill is higher.
V. Chapter 272, Section 53
To "rogues and vagabonds."
It now merely threatens
"Common railers and brawlers."
Everyone should be afraid of the police.
Even though no one should have to be.
Amy lived on Ware St.
She sat in my living room
Describing how well Skip dresses
How he smiles at strangers.
That southern thing.
Andy had never heard of Gates.
But knows one of the cops
Who showed up in a news photo.
A Cambridge cop once yelled
Because I came too close
To an exploded manhole.
"I'm sorry. I don't want you to get hurt."
"The Butterfly Effect" was a pretty good flick! Kind of like an extended Twilight Zone episode.
"First there is a time when we believe everything, then for a little while we believe with discrimination, then we believe nothing whatever, and then we believe everything again - and, moreover, give reasons why we believe." --Georg Christoph LichtenbergThe IKEA catalog, strangely soothing and hypnotic- all those idyllic scenes painted in words. Are those real apartments done up, or sets?
--I know in certain cultures it's a terrible insult to shoe show the bottoms of one's feet, so sorry about that. But I helped Amber paint yesterday, and despite appearances, got most of the paint on the walls, not on the floor.
"'Clitoris' would be a bad name for a sub shop. Or any business for that matter. It's even a bad name for what it is a name for." --http:/twitter.com/SteveDelfinoTomcat and Eclipse configuration issues (thought solved, somehow recurring, much like a venereal disease) are shaking my confidence in my chosen career.
ODBC and Hibernate -- now you can put your tabular-ish records on the filesystem, and your properties file in your database, and confuse other developers for hours! Never underestimate the "what the hell??" power of such a configuration!
TIPS FOR PERFORMERS: Playing cards have the top half upside-down to help
cheaters. There are a finite number of jokes in the universe. Singing is a
trick to get people to listen to music for longer than they would ordinarily.
There is no music in space. People will pay to watch people make sounds.
Everything on stage should be larger than in real life.
LIVING WITH OTHER PEOPLE: Violence on television only affects children whose
parents act like television personallities. Table manners are for people who
have nothing better to do. Civilization is a religion. Civilized people walk
funny. There is always a party going on somewhere. People will remember you if
you always wear the same outfit.
LIFE ON EARTH: Men like pastries, women like custards. Scientists have
invented a love drug, but it only works on bugs. Animals like earthquakes,
tornadoes, and volcanic activity. Nuclear weapons can wipe out life on Earth,
if used properly. Cats like houses better than people. Dolphins find people
amusing, but they don't want to talk to them. People look ridiculous when
they're in ecstasy. Schools are for training people how to listen to other
people. Body odor is the window to the soul. Sound is worth money.
IN THE HOME: There have been cases where people's shoes got stuck on their
feet and could never be removed. The best way to get rid of unwanted flying
insects is to have strong body odor. There hasn't been a good=looking American
car in 20 years. There is always something on television. The best length for
television programs is either 30 seconds or 8 hours.
THE SPACE PEOPLE: Space People read our mail. The Space People think that TV
news programs are comedies, and that soap operas are news. The Space People
will contact us when they can make money by doing so. The Space People think
factories are musical instruments. They sing along with them. Each song lasts
from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. No music on weekends.
MONEY: People will do odd things if you give them money. When everything is
worth money, then money is worth nothing. If you keep your money in your shoe,
then people will know which bills are yours. If you crumple your money into
little bills, it will never stick together. The best way to touch money is by
the edges. U.S. money is the worst looking money in the world.
WORLD TRAVEL: Passport pictures are what people really look like. Rich people
will travel great distances to look at poor people. Toast is the national dish
of Australia. People never travel to look at flat landscapes. People would
rather watch things than eat. Looking at postcards is better than looking at
the real thing. Looking up is as scary as looking down.
IN THE FUTURE: In the future, women will have breasts all over. In the future,
it will be a relief to find a place without culture. In the future, plates of
food will have names and titles. In the future, we will all drive standing up.
In the future, love will be taught on television and by listening to pop
WORK: Crime is a job. Sex is a job. Growing up is a job. School is a job.
Going to parties is a job. Religion is a job. Being creative is a job.
--EB sent me the liner notes to the Taking Heads' "Stop Making Sense" for some reason... neat stuff. I like how it predicts the Segway in the Fture section.
http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2009/07/exclusive-interview-with-a-pirate/ - International Talk With a Pirate Day.
http://kirkjerk.com/2004/07/28/ - heh, 5 years ago today I published my first Processing app... Man, 5 Years? Anyway, fun language
So far the only good thing about Outlook Spam block is that it successfully junked "Celebrate 10 Years of Messenger" from Windows Live Team-
"Please allow 6 to 8 weeks for delivery" - what was up with that? Every product coming in from overseas?
Just watched the Red Sox retire Jim Rice's number- Heh, wonder if they rearranged the #s so it wasn't him + Jackie Robinson apart from the white guys--
Kirk's Law of Code Comments: Developers who think a bug tracking # is sufficient for a code comment or check-in message are probably not very good developers.
--Animation by Antonio Linhares. Been thinking about Raymond Scott lately. It's too bad his quintet's version of his "Powerhouse" doesn't have the- well, power- of Carl Stalling's Loony Tunes version, which the first minute of this is based on. (Maybe I should rip this as an MP3...I purchased a Carl Stalling mp3 from Amazon, but this cut wasn't stand alone, just mashed in with all the rest.)
--A few weeks ago I found this totally scary picture on a cardboard box for a child's scoot-around car in EB's backyard. (You can see original picture here -- it still has that Stepford-Wife-in-Training look but isn't quote so Zombie-like.)
#failedchildrensbooktitles : Harold and the Purple Nurple One Scab Two Scabs Red Scab Blue Scab Make Sauce for Ducklings -- http://twitter.com/SteveDelfinoJust got tickets for a week in Portugal in September. Because I'm an idiot, I have to figure out what to do overnight in London.