Monday, March 24, 2008

Terrible. F.

Via Copyranter:

These are awful, terrible, no-good ads. So friggin' lazy.

People who pawn this sort of garbage off are as bad as what they rail against. I understand and agree with the sentiments expressed here, but if you really feel that way, put something worthwhile out into the world rather than some dumb manifesto videos with a logo tacked onto the end. Set an example rather than telling people how to feel about culture. Idiots. Gah!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Work It, Own It

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

There Goes A Game Changer

Monday, March 17, 2008

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Reason #894 why I love the Muppets:

Friday, March 14, 2008

Fair Play

Sometimes I Think They Just Tell Me What I Want To Hear

Cool SXSW Drawings

These awesome sketches were done by Mike Rohde (blog here), a design writer. They are his notes from the convention. Cool stuff. I love it.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Around the Internets

Since Brad discontinued his blog, I'm going to steal one of his ideas, Around the Internets. This is where I compile some interesting things I found wandering around the tubes. Enjoy!

-Daily Kos has a great post about the Clinton campaign's two-pronged strategy for closing out primary season by trying to discredit both Obama and the primary process.

-AOL buys Bebo. Who? And they're buying what?

-The speculation is that Michael is coming back on Lost. I for one would give him a swift kick in the junk.

-Yet another reason to leave Los Angeles.

-I've been taking advantage of the Daily Lit, and it rocks. I'm currently receiving Swann's Way by Proust, and it's quite an experience. It's wonderful experiencing a novel so entirely rooted in the idea of the fleeting nature of memory in chunks that almost operate like memories do, providing respite from reality. Good stuff, and entirely free!!

-Blender, a publication I normally avoid, has an interesting list of the 20 biggest record company screw-ups of all time. Old favorites like the Yankee Hotel Foxtrot end-around-on-themselves, the Sisyphus-esque horror of Chinese Democracy, and some dude passing on the Beatles are represented. Most notable, however, is that three of the top ten have to do with the music industry's anti-piracy efforts. Unusually relevant stuff from the purveyors of Maxim.

That's what I got for now, fools. Ah, the Flaming Lips just came on. Must go float away in blissssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Kathleen Edwards - Asking For Flowers

I've got a big thing for Kathleen Edwards. Her last album, Back to Me,is one of my favorite albums of the decade, one that I still listen to as much today as I did when it came out three years ago. She is a songwriter of rare quality. It's not an overstatement to say that her songs can hold their own against the best of Neil Young and Ryan Adams.

Needless to say, I was delightfully surprised last week when I discovered that one day earlier her follow-up, Asking for Flowers, was out. While it doesn't quite reach the heights of Back to Me, it's a solid effort. The first song, "Buffalo," is as good as anything she's ever written. It's a gradually building study of seasonal romance, and it's marvelous. Her voice sends me over the moon. She's seriously got one of the best voices around.

Nothing else on the album quite reaches those heights, but there are some really solid tracks. "Alicia Ross" is a devastating story about a woman telling her mother about the man who killed her, and "Oil Man's War" is a roaring indictment of ... well, you know. All in all it's a good listen, and it shows that she's not just a flash in the pan.

ALSO, if you haven't already checked out the Amplive remixes of In Rainbows, get your ass over there and check that mess out. You won't be sorry you did.

ALSO x 2, I would like to retract my prediction that Juno would annoy me. It rocks.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

In Defense Of Words

I’ve been watching this presidential election with a lot of interest. This is mainly because, like a lot of other people my age and younger, I finally feel like I’ve found someone in Senator Obama who makes me feel good when I think about voting. I’ve hesitated to really trumpet my political views before now, but something is really beginning to piss me off and I want to write about it.

Senator Clinton has made it a point to attack Obama with the argument that what he offers is words rather than solutions (which ostensibly she offers). She says that his words are what his entire campaign is built upon, that hope is merely an empty promise, and that his message of unification is merely that, a message that will remain only a message.

I understand that Clinton has been in the Senate four years longer than Obama. I understand that she has had the experience of putting forth a health care plan to the nation. I understand that she has visited 80 countries. I’ve visited 11 myself. Very exciting.

I take issue with the implication that words somehow don't matter. Words are terribly important in my mind. Some words that I think are particularly important at the moment are: diplomacy, imperialism, scare tactics, and yes, unification.

I believe that words are an indication of how someone thinks about the world. Senator Clinton talks about the country as if it is a challenge for her to solve, a proving ground for her to live up to her potential. Senator Obama talks about the country as if it is a wonder, an amazing gem with the potential to be so much more than it is. Which one sounds better to you?

I respect what Senator Clinton has done, and I have no doubt about her intentions. But being the First Lady counts little towards foreign policy experience. I love her husband, but they both have shown a scary ambition that often eclipses their good intentions.

How one speaks about the world, about the things he loves, is in my mind the clearest indication of what kind of leader he is. And from what I have seen of these two candidates, Senator Obama has an ability to lead the country that has less to do with experience than it has to do with optimism and energy. And I think that’s what we desperately need right now.

It makes me sad to see the kinds of statements that Senator Clinton has made about her opponents in this race. I put a lot more stock in how she has conducted herself than the fact that she lived in the White House for eight years. I just hope that enough people see it that way as well.

Sunday, March 02, 2008


Watching The Gates yesterday afternoon on HBO, I was reminded of why I love New York City so much, and consequently I began to realize why I don’t like Los Angeles. The Gates is a documentary about Jean-Claude and Christo’s magnificent art project in Central Park. They were made of orange metal and fabric and lined the pathways of Central Park for two weeks in February of 2005. The film outlines the process of bringing The Gates to life, a process that took several decades and an incredible amount of tenacity, and also chronicles the reactions of New Yorkers to the installation, most of which were overwhelmingly positive.

The Gates were up during my last winter living in New York. I remember going up to Central Park with my best friend Ted and wandering around awestruck. We really had no words to describe The Gates. They were extraordinary. The best part, though, was the people around us. When you live in New York you come to detest but tolerate crowds. You avoid places like Times Square and The Great Lawn and try to capture your own New York that you don’t have to share with the city. The Gates drew a lot of their power, however, from the fact that they were a shared experience. They drew people into Central Park and forced us to be around each other, to interact with each other. I struck up conversations about art and the nature of collective experiences with complete strangers that day. The Gates invited the people of the city to be at their best, to celebrate art with each other.

I can’t imagine such an experience in Los Angeles. People simply don’t interact here in the same way. We drive around in our cars all day. We don’t have faces to put to the people around us, and that invites us to treat them as objects rather than as humans. There is also a complete lack of identity for any area of the city. For the most part, the only way to tell where you are by the amount of parking there is. Park Slope has an identity. The Upper East Side has an identity. Venice and Santa Monica do not, in my experience. It’s a city structure that doesn’t invite interaction or spontaneity, either. A night out in the East Village meant that you would most likely meet up with at least three different groups of friends and hang out. Los Angeles is so spread out and cloistered that it’s impossible to have that same sort of experience.

But, I don’t want this to turn into a rant. Watching The Gates made me realize how much I miss New York’s energy and generosity of spirit. It really is the greatest city in the world.