Wednesday, March 28, 2007

tender mind + HBO = fond memories of crap

In writing this I realize I am joining the ranks of almost 99% of the female population my age. There is nothing remarkable or unique in proclaiming my love for certain things 80's. This little nostalgic exercise is not intended however to sing hallelujah to God for making "the Corey's" or get giddy all over again about dreamy 'ole James Spader (yes... long ago he wasn't too shabby).

I stumbled across an old movie title when looking for something today. In doing so I opened an old mental box of dusty early 80's gems. No-one around me recognized most of the titles that I excitedly rattled off... "ooh, ooh, and remember this?". So my purpose in writing is two-fold. One, to get the celluloid daydreaming over with without losing any friends as I go full speed down memory lane. Two, just to openly touch upon the fact that I have seen so many bad movies, and more notably that most were viewed when I was 9 or 10 years old.

The movies listed here are really not very good and they aren't even my favorites. For some reason though they make me smile and also wonder what the heck my parents were thinking. Maybe THIS is why I like TV so much... because I got to watch some twisted crap when I was just a wee thing. Hey, I think it all worked ok, but really.. . "Hot Dog: The Movie", which easily could have been called "Sex and Some Skiing"... that had to do SOME sort of damage. Ah, who knows. On a little black and white TV in 1985 that was about as good as it gets.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

quicker than the record, slower than the cd

I do not, nor will I ever, claim to be any sort of music reviewer. I know what I like and I know what I don't like though. I like these guys, and so should you. They are called 50 Kaitenz (50 RPMs) and I think they are amazing. An obvious throw-back in both sound and styling, they are a lot of fun no matter how you slice it. If the Ramones had been Japanese they might have sounded a little like these fellas. I use the comparison cautiously but it paints the best picture. Sonically satisfying and a Whamo-O Super Ball personified treat for the eyes... not only do I want to listen to these guys, I want to become their best friend.

Official site here

"gonzo", where did you come from?

The origin of the word gonzo is inextricably linked to writer Hunter S. Thompson, famed for his style dubbed gonzo journalism. Gonzo is a highly subjective, first-person style, characterized by distorted and exaggerated facts. Thompson first used the word in print in the 11 November 1971 issue of Rolling Stone:

But what was the story? Nobody had bothered to say. So we would have to drum it up on our own. Free Enterprise. The American Dream. Horatio Alger gone mad on drugs in Las Vegas. Do it now: pure Gonzo journalism.

Thompson explained where he got the term a year later in Stop Presses by R. Pollack:

I ask Hunter to explain. Just what is Gonzo Journalism? "Gonzo all started with Bill Cardosa, after I wrote the Kentucky Derby piece for Scanlan’s the first time I realized you could write different. And I got this note from Cardosa saying, ‘That was pure Gonzo journalism!’Some Boston word for weird, bizarre."

Thompson was wrong about it being a Boston regionalism. More likely, it is from the Italian gonzo, meaning foolish, or the Spanish ganso, meaning goose or fool.

From Thompson’s usage, the term generalized to mean anything foolish or bizarre.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

bad luck

I have been spending a lot of time lately thinking about luck, more specifically of the bad variety.

Luck/bad luck in some circles could be a throw-away term; an easy excuse for things not going your way, a dismissive way to skirt responsibility. The logical side of me agrees. I tend to think quite often that our lives unfold because we almost will them to work a certain way, whether it’s the power of positive/negative thinking, laziness and apathy, or how we seize opportunities. There’s something empowering in embracing this train of thought… I suppose it’s comforting to believe we have control over our destiny, that we can nurture fate.

The other side of me, and I don’t want to call it the illogical side of me, even though it seems to be the most appropriate counter term for logic, can’t shake that some stuff seems to haunt you or pop up over and over. How to define that, I don’t know. Is there such thing as good luck or bad luck? Just as someone can live a “charmed life” can they live an “unlucky life”? Is it coincidence, the law of probability, serendipity… all fancy words for “shit happens”?

Or maybe, “it is what it is”. Sometimes there is nothing to analyze, it simply exists and life is the random juxtaposition and intersection of many, many people doing their thing.

Carl Jung coined the term “Synchronicity”. This belief suggests that within perceived coincidence lay a pattern that connects events, that there truly is some deeper meaning that is out of our control. Some believe this happens all of the time though and we only choose to recognize certain patterns, the ones that seem most relevant or are on the forefront of the mind.

Even if life’s curveballs can be racked up to chance is there some divine mystical power that wills it to be or some age old superstition. If bad luck can be defined and classified as the “disease”, what drives it? Did Karma pave my destiny? Did I step on too many cracks as a child? There’s actually a never ending list of superstitions that will frighten you the point that you will never leave the house. I’m not looking for answers only to find myself a glorified shut in (so I stopped reading the list about 1/3 of the way down).

I am also not looking to avoid the uncertainty and surprises of life… this is what makes each day so potentially interesting. I guess when it comes down to it both sides of my brain might be right; maybe there is a little bit of right in each individual’s theory. I can only try to be a good person, hard as it may be sometimes, and work towards getting the things I want. In between all of that, when good intentions seem powerless, I will continue to look for answers to my questions… “what did I do to deserve this?”, and more importantly “how can I make it stop?”, even if they are unanswerable. It can’t all be so accidental. My brain may will some of it, as for the rest of it… weird invisible crap magnet, give me a break… just a little one, then you can go back to your black magic.

hobo lifestyles

Monday, March 12, 2007

animal farm

Need a statue? Who doesn't. Bear, elephant, lion, horse, wolf, greek goddess, and um, DINOSAUR (the list goes on and on), this place has what you need. Any front yard that's lacking some awesome lawn art, look no further... your needs have just been met. Take I-35 North about 15 miles south of Waco and you've entered concrete heaven. Keep an eye out for the giant pig on the roof and you're there.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

"weird", where did you come from?

Weird is an example of a word whose most common modern meaning is quite different from its original English meaning. The word, originally a noun, dates back to Old English, where it meant fate or destiny. By the Middle English period, it was being used to refer the three Fates of Greek and Roman myth, and in Scotland this sense evolved into that of a witch. This Scottish use was Shakespeare’s inspiration for the three weird sisters in Macbeth. The modern adjective, however, does not appear until the 19th century, undoubtedly modeled on Shakespeare’s use.

Friday, March 9, 2007

Flatstock 12 Poster Convention

Graphic art. Posters. Free admission. Go.

Austin Convention Center
March 15 - 17, 2007
1PM to 6PM Thursday the 15th
11AM to 6PM Friday and Saturday the 16th and 17th

do the watusi

I stumbled upon this recently. At first I thought someone got creative with Photoshop, but when I further researched I realized it's for real. This is a Watusi steer, also know as an Ankole-Watusi. These guys come straight out of Africa and faced near-extinction at one point. Now they're doing just fine and have the honor of "largest horn circumference in the world" according to the Guinness Book of World Records . Hold your head high Lurch (that's this famous guy's name)... if you can.

"spitting image", where did you come from?

There are several false explanations circulating about this phrase, probably because the metaphor is not an obvious one. One is that it is a corruption of spirit and image, from the belief that people who looked alike shared a soul. Another is that it is a corruption of splitting image, referring to a person being split into two identical persons. Both of these are incorrect. They are after-the-fact explanations that are not supported by evidence. Instead, the spit is just that, saliva.

The metaphor at work is that of a person spitting out an exact replica of themself. Spitting image dates to 1901. Spitten picture is a bit earlier, dating to 1878. The very spit of is even older, dating to 1825. And use of the metaphor of fathers spitting out look-alike sons dates to at least 1400.--

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

for no reason

hobby helper

Stick with me here for a minute... In the end it's ridiculous, BUT I also could be on to something. There are people that you can hire to walk your dog, organize your closet, choose your clothes, manage your finances, and so on. Basically a profession exists for every area of a person's life, to execute and take the worry, fear, and ineptitude away.

I'm not sure if I could ever pay for any of these services... but maybe if I had the money (I'm also stubborn so probably not). Certainly many, many other people are taking these folks up on their "skills" (ok, some really are skills) and half of television is based on the principal that people need other people to figure out their lives.

So... I thought, what if I became a hobby match maker. Having a hobby I think is extremely important, mainly because it's (usually) a healthy outlet. You're exercising your brain and sometimes your body. You're spending time with yourself or with others. Most times it's a nice diversion from your job. And then some can even evolve into a job they love, therefore ditching the drudgery of the other.

Some people, try as they might, actually can't put their finger on what would be fun to do, what that great outlet could be for them. That's where I would come in... e-harmony for hobbies. I get them started and then the love rolls. Why not.