February 23, 2002

Art Stinks

And is it any wonder? Can anyone take this seriously? I'm sorry, this is just TOO stupid. But it's a good scam if you can get away with it (and apparently, some can).
Olympic news they don't want to report ... only Piddleville has it!

February 22, 2002

Ah, man! ... Just when you figure out how to pronounce Belarus, they get eliminated!

Now, we seem to have some bruised egos (or is it wallets?) at the Olympics. Here's my diplomatic solution: Everyone gets a gold medal! Everyone gets bribe! Everyone gets a product endorsement deal! Everyone gets a product logo tattooed to their ass!

February 20, 2002

Well, lookee ... A story about blog backlash. Apparently some people feel blogs are nothing but public masturbation. To which I say,

"Ya got a problem with that?!!!"

How long have I been on the Internet? I think close to 10 years now. I believe I was here a little bit prior to the advent of the Web. And I believe the Internet has always been about communication. About telling people stuff. What Eduardo Galleano would call the human voice, and the need to be heard. If blogs are in the millions now, then I would think it means there are a lot of people who want to be heard, are frustrated with being silenced by the Men in Black (no, not the one's from that bonehead movie). Actually, they are more appropriately described as the People In Grey. (Get The Kinks disc, "Muswell Hillbillies" to hear what I mean.)

Anyway ... Blogs are simply the latest manifestation of communication tools. Does anyone remember Fidonet and echoes? Using mailers to upload messages to bulletin boards and the threads of data-based conversations, arguments, debates that went on? Those were infant blogs. They're the same damn thing. The difference is blogs are Web-based and there's a hell of lot more people who have something to say - or, rather, there are just as many people as ever with something to say, there are simply new and more accessible ways to do it now.

Are there assholes with blogs? Of course. Are there assholes in traditional mediums? Damn right. As Theodore Sturgeon once said speaking of science fiction (poorly paraphrasing here), 90% of everything is shit, but it's the 10% remaining is gold.

February 16, 2002

Good golly, Martha! It's a dandy day out there! Just dandy! Warm as a bed with flannel sheets and sun shining like it just got laid. Dandy, dandy. Must stop wasting time on the computer and go out. (Not a good time if you operate a ski lift.)
Four new DVD purchases ... X-men (the special edition must be coming out - the price on this was considerably reduced), To Kill A Mockingbird (good price and, despite being an MGM movie, actually has legitimate bonus features), Ghost World (quite good but not as good as the reviews would suggest), and PBS's Ken Burns film, Mark Twain (which I've yet to watch).

Of the four (or three, since Mark Twain remains to be seen), hands down winner ... To Kill A Mockingbird. No contest.

February 15, 2002

Oh hey ... looks like Canada's skating duo may get that Olympic gold medal. My question ... What do these boneheads who keep screwing up skating competitions get? My vote - the Grand Heave-Ho! If you can't judge fairly, don't judge at all. This is the real problem for the IOC. Frankly, though it hurts athletes and others unjustly, they should ban the ISU from the Olympics until they get their shit together - and can convince us they've got it together.

Damnation! Why doesn't anybody ever ask for my opinion! I'd settle the world's ills damn fast!

February 3, 2002

I was talking to a friend of mine last night. She’s in Seattle now. Inevitably, we talked a bit about the latest planetary lunacy – the Afghanistan business, Iraq, terrorism, blah, blah, blah.

Interest is still quite high in all this. If it were a movie, it would be breaking box office records and plans for the DVD would require at least three, staggered versions with a second theatrical release just prior to the final (ha!) Director’s Cut.

The Web is littered with blogs and online news sites that are filled with stories about all of this. They range from the far right to the far left and all the shades between. You could spend the rest of your life just reading about the War online. And that’s without even going near the traditional media outlets like TV, radio, and print.

And here’s what I was thinking today: Beyond this stupid little rock, out there amid all the uncountable galaxies and stars, does anyone give a shit? I’m in my forties and I’ve concluded this crap NEVER goes away. It mutates, it puts on a new suit of clothes, sometimes it even changes its accent, but it NEVER GOES AWAY!

This is the hope and the horror of space travel. Sometimes (and tellingly) referred to as space colonization.

The hope is that one day we can get off this dust ball and in doing so leave the assholes behind to rant and bitch at each other and eventually blow themselves to hell and gone.

The horror is that we eventually get off the rock and take all the same shit to the stars, fucking up the universe the same way we fuck up everything else.

The rights and wrongs of all this business aside, the thing that most strikes me about it all is how tiresome it all is. The endless nattering about who did what to whom and how to deal with it and who knows what they’re talking about and who doesn’t and what we should and shouldn’t do and today we like the U.S. president and tomorrow we think he’s a screw-up and the day after that … It’s like an episode of some annoying TV show, a single episode, being rerun over and over endlessly. Are we talking about Reagan or Carter or Bush … and which Bush? And the names we can’t pronounce from lands whose names have never made it to prime time TV before …

We think progress is the advance of technology but good God! The middle-east has been going on FOREVER! Can anyone, anywhere remember a time when the middle-east wasn’t a principle news story? This is not progress. This is a car with a wheel in a rut spinning mindlessly, unendingly, and never going anywhere.

Good guys and bad guys – who’s who? Dunno – check the calendar and see what day of the week it is. Call Madge down the block – “Hey Madge! Who we liking this week?”

Last night, I turn on the TV and see the World Economic Forum, one of those asinine economic summits or whatever the hell they are. And the lead characters in the story? Serious suits with a variety of degrees by their names, political appointees with the charisma of dried mud and … Bill Gates. And Bono.

Bill Gates? BONO?!!! Argentina – your problems are solved! We’ve put U2 on it!

Afghanistan – we’ve put Microsoft in charge of the rebuild! Soon you’ll be able to effectively farm that massive abandoned parking lot with the aid of wizards and pop-up windows! Just be sure you download the right character set.

The entire world is locked into a dick measuring contest. Who has the biggest pecker? And don’t think if you’ve got the biggest, you’ve won anything. It’s like those lines in Revelation about Death on a pale horse. The guy with the small dick is going to have serious issues, and he’ll be ready to take on anyone. Hell follows the guy with the teensy pee-pee.

Now that’s a rambling rant if ever there was one.

February 2, 2002

According to the David Fincher site there will be a Criterion Collection 2 disc release of Fincher's The Game in April. On the other hand, a quick search of the Criterion site revealed nothing. We can hope though.

(The Game is, for me, the most interesting Fincher film, though I'm largely alone on this. And, in the game, Fincher's interest in fathers and sons is a primary theme.)
Good heavens! Even Dot Tots, people only hours old, have and maintain blogs better than I do. I am so deflated. Bested by an infant.
So what do we know? We know that the clown writing this blog can't keep it up (the blog entries, that is). Where do these other people find the time for all the writing and all the links they add? Buggered if I know.

I was out for dinner last night with some friends and we discussed this with serious, furrowed brows. No answers though. We just can't figure out where these people find the time. Also puzzling ... The only time I seem to update this thing is on the weekend, when I do seem to have a few minutes. But weekends seem to be when every other blog shuts down. What's the story? Either I have no life or the other bloggers only have one on weekends. Maybe both?

If I'm not mistaken, the Super Bowel is tomorrow. New England and St. Louis. Patriots and the Rams. Everyone anticipates a traditional Superbowl Blow-out. This increases the pressure on advertisers to spend gazillions hiring rock video directors, this week's top celebrities, and CGI wizards to create 30 second spectales that persuade us to increase our beer and runners consumption. I've been saving up for three months for this sudden urge to purchase, so I'm ready. Hope U2 is too. Rah rah! Go Mariah go! Gurgle .... more beer please ...

I'm considering a new name for this blog. Proposed title: Chilblains and Chips. I've kicked the idea upstairs to the executives and expect a decision any day now. I'll keep you posted.