Thursday, November 30, 2006

8% Nation, or Day 30

I only just discovered the reviews of NaBloPoMo at Writing Aspirations.

I went and checked out her reviews of the E section. Granted this was earlier on, but my blog entries haven't been any more focused since that day. I'm guessing I was lumped in with this group:

8% I have absolutely no idea what their blog is about... I'm thinking nablo has led them to completely random posts... some just pictures, some just links... some just idle personal observations

I was not singled out directly, but hey, yesterday my pal Roy got a link. I know he and Kaci are NaBloPoMo participants as well. I'm sure there are other Austin people as well, but those two are the only ones from my social circle that I know of.

Here at the end of the month, I feel it's been good to put some pressure on myself to actually commit words daily to some kind of medium, and I hope the trend continues.

I finished my review of SkyMaul today and it's off to the editor. I think I'm going to be doing more reviews in the near future. I'll put links to them once they're published.

I think I'm also going to start doing more reviews of stuff here, which was my original intention when I started this blog.

First up, the new Joanna Newsom album, Ys.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

The Face Knife

I hadn't paid attention for a while, but it was nice to see that The Face Knife is up and blogging a bunch recently.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Happy Feet

So we took Emmett to Happy Feet when we were in Iowa. I knew nothing about the movie except that it was CG and had penguins. We lasted about 40 minutes, at Emmett's request. We got to the point where the hero character, Mumble, turns out to be a freakish, half-baby penguin even in his adolescence and messes up the other cool kid penguins' graduation. He had no idea what was going on. He told us, "When I'm bigger, I'll come back and watch this movie."

As we were leaving, we asked, "Did you want to go home because it was scary or because you didn't know what was going on."

"Going on," was his response.

I don't blame him. This was seriously the weirdest kids movie I've been to in a while. It combined all the worst, pop-medley aspects of Moulin Rouge with surreal penguin gods and a high council that reminded me of both the Skeksis from The Dark Crystal and the severe old presbyters from Breaking the Waves. And oh yeah, all the characters were indistinguishable from one another. Note to filmmakers--if you're making a kid's movie that you hope 3.5 year olds will watch, please make the characters look different from one another. Not just, you know, have them sing Elvis songs.

On the other hand, it had a very stark look, with masses of penguins moving in unison. It could be the most experimental mainstream kids movie ever. Like THX 1138, but for kids.

We left before it got overtly political. So strange.

Monday, November 27, 2006

On McCain

I kind of sort of know the guy who wrote this. Go read.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Much to blog about...

But not on this connection. Michael Richards is a racist? Did director Robert Altman die? I have no idea what's going in the world.

Also, more project ideas, will be blogged soon.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Among my five readers

Surely one of you knows how to fix my sidebar on my Blogger template. This blog displays fine on Firefox, but it looks like crap on Explorer. Anyone know what might be going on?

I can't believe I've been doing this for 24 days straight right now.

Friday, November 24, 2006

How Much Pie

Can I possible eat? How much heartburn endure? How much unknowledge listen to? How many trips down Robin Hooded memory lane?

The Chiefs prevailed. Nice.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving

It is difficult to not make waves when people close to you make ignorant or bigoted comments. Sigh.

At any rate, go Chiefs!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

In Iowa

On an amazingly slow Internet connection. I think my posting, while daily, will be minimal. Not that that's a change or anything.

We watched Disney's Robin Hood this morning, a blast from the past for me and Lacey. Emmett was only kind of sort of into it.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Off for Thanksgiving

To Iowa, to my parents. In honor of the trip, I'm wearing my Iowa sweatshirt, which Emmett insists spells out the word College.

Getting today's post in right now, as I might not have a chance again until extremely late tonight.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Laura Ingraham

So I guess since she thinks TVs shows are national referenda on what Americans find to be acceptable in our public life, she'll be down with a black man as President.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

The Cowboys

I used to hate the Dallas Cowboy when I was a kid. Since I've lived in Texas, my attitude toward them has softened. I still don't like Parcells, and I don't like TO, and I'm not crazy about the city, but overall I don't root against them, and I'm happy for them when things like this happen.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Getting in today's post

I am in Texarkana. Just watched the Michigan-OSU football game. On my way to the Ross Perot Theater. Ate at CrackerBarell earlier. I live in America.

More tomorrow.

Friday, November 17, 2006



I really want to win that painting!

Pompel and Pilt

Awesome disturbing childrens' show from late 60s Norway!

Wu Tang Killer Bionic Hornets

Hat tip to Adam Novy. Soon we will be able to kill with our minds.

Israel is using nanotechnology to try to create a robot no bigger than a hornet that would be able to chase, photograph and kill its targets, an Israeli newspaper reported on Friday.

The flying robot, nicknamed the "bionic hornet", would be able to navigate its way down narrow alleyways to target otherwise unreachable enemies such as rocket launchers, the daily Yedioth Ahronoth said.

What ODB could have done with something like that.

Also, this is pretty sweet

It is one of several weapons being developed by scientists to combat militants, it said. Others include super gloves that would give the user the strength of a "bionic man"...

Thursday, November 16, 2006

I hereby just turn my blog over to Digby

Just go read.


Spices, tonight

More info here.

One day I will post more about this show.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Democrats to Bush: greenhouse gas limits needed - Yahoo! News

Democrats to Bush: greenhouse gas limits needed - Yahoo! News

This is the kind of stuff I was hoping for. Let's hope it makes a difference.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

I love Digby

Here's why:

Plenty of young people want to come to America and would be more than happy to pay into social security to support all of us old codgers. They just aren't the "right kind" of people, if you know what I mean. So get to breeding, white bitches. You've got work to do.

I am all for having a big tent. But there is no political party on earth that is big enough for me and people who believe that liberalism's great hope is to create policies that encourage women to have 14 children so we can "outbreed" the competition and make sure the wrong people don't come in and ruin the place. That's where I head for the exit.

BAGnewsNotes: Getting A Grip

BAGnewsNotes: Getting A Grip

It's analysis like this that makes me love BAGnewsNotes. Reading this blog is like reading really good art historical deciphering of Rembrant, as with Schama's Rembrant's Eyes, which I read earlier this year, or Gary Wills' Venice: Lion City which I'm reading now. Except it's not art, it contemporary politics, on the fly. I don't go over and see what's up with this blog often enough.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Thin candy coating of incumbency

TBogg talking about Cheney's probable departure within a year or so

Having spent the last six years calling the shots with his best buddy Don, one wonders how long Dick is going to stick around and when, after enough time has passed so that it doesn't appear he is cutting and running, he will have a "health crisis" that will dictate his retirement.

My guess is next summer handing his replacement the thin-candy coating of incumbency without the stink of the previous six plus years...

Lists. Destination Out.

Are you a list maker? Specifically a maker of to-do lists? I am, big time, although I've noticed that I often make more progress on my to-do lists when I'm not, you know, worried about adding to my lists

At any rate, have gotten a lot accomplished in the last few days, even at work.

What else? Uh, if you want to find out more about the most neglected period of jazz (namely the 70s and 80s), may I suggest Destination Out? I've been checking this blog out on a regular basis for some time now. Today he's got some Steve Lacey/Mal Waldron cuts up there. Heaven.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Gotta work in today's post

So, couple things. Not going to get much blogging done as I work on my piece for the SVT Best Holiday Ever.

I did want to acknowledge that my peers in the AIC voted best host 2006. That feels nice.

More more more soon. Reading many books, thinking many thoughts, cleaning many spaces in the house. Life is, um, orderly. I feel very French.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Just returned...

from the Yellow Tape gig, which was a blast. More tomorrow.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Oscar-Winning Actor Jack Palance Dies - New York Times

Man, that's a bummer. I don't know if I would have thought before this to put him in the second 50 great things about the United States, but he's going in there now.

Oscar-Winning Actor Jack Palance Dies - New York Times

Nice quote from Peter Coyote

I'm not always the biggest fan of his acting, but this is how I feel about the improv and theater scenes in Austin. Nice.

“Without provocative talk, coffeehouses and good meeting places, artistic friendships, and a supportive community, art cannot flourish. A second-rate poet may be a first rate critic of another’s work. While history tends to isolate and reward the luminaries of such milieus, it is the scene itself, the weltanschaung, from which the art is generated, which should receive equal credit. Something is in the wind, or entering people through the soles of their feet. Many feel it, but the artist gives it expression. Without comparable receptors in the form of an audience, the artists’ work would be an empty exercise, and so the milieu must be nourished and respect if art and culture are to flourish.”



As usual, what Digby and Krugman say.

Thursday, November 09, 2006


In many ways a good day, regarding my future career. In other ways a horrible day regarding other aspects of my life. Posting from ColdTowne Theatre after a very good episode of Spices.

More tomorrow.

Oh yeah, the Democrats took the Senate. Huzzah!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

So tired

Not going to write much. But sometimes I sound off on message boards about politics and such.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Dems to take the House!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So sayeth CNN. The night is only half over. Senate still too close to call.


This ad has got the whole porn/sex line ad thing down--cheesy music, a lame suburban interior with an afgan over the couch, winky vamp with a phone. Hilarious.

What TBogg says

This sounds right.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Overheard tonight

Emmett should be an ad man for the M&M Mars Company. While eating some peanut M&Ms, he announced, "There's chocolate in these yummy yummy beans!" This quote is made better by his pronouncing 'chocolate' as 'chocolick.'

In other news, he's a budding Barry Le Va. I ask you to compare:

Emmett's work

Here's another:

Now for Le Va:

And another

Budding art genius? Ad man? You make the call.

My current governor

And more than certain continued governor belives non-Christians are going to hell.

I also heard him recently on the radio advocating that gay couples should not be allowed to adopt. He will be in the running, therefore, to be our next vice-president.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

This is pretty sweet, too

Bruce Conner

Hat tip to Bob McNichol for finding this. Something about his name always makes me think of Bruce Jenner, 1976 decathalete.But no. Conner's a artist from the beat/abstract expressionist into pop era who made films and collages. He also had a line that's stuck with me from the liner notes to Harry Smith's (an artistic forebearer in many ways) Anthology of American Folk Music. He said listening to the music in the set made him realize that there was more to America than Wichita Mind Control--Conner's from Kansas originally. I really like that expression. One day it will be the name of a show or troupe of mine. Wichita Mind Control.

Anyway, enjoy the film.

Oh joy

NRCC try to sabotage the election by annoying the shit out of voters.


And to think that way back when I actualliy liked the rporting of Cokie Roberts. It was her reporting during the Clinton impeachment that made me think, hmmm, here's a gossip columnist mascarading as a journalist. More lameness. No one on NPR makes me more furious on a regular basis.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Graffiti NYC

Graffiti NYC
Originally uploaded by spentpenny.

First lips. Blue stripe instead of an eye. Eye patch. Nose like astronomy. First favorite.

America: The Good Parts Version (First Half)

Inspired by this post here, I've decided to come up with my own list.

1. Steven Reich
2. Tom Waits
3. The Library of America
4. David Foster Wallace
5. The Sound of Young America
6. The fact that Walt Whitman wound up on a box of chocolates.
7. Old Warner Bothers cartoons.
8. David Milch
9. HBO in general
10. Liberal blogs like Talking Points Memo, Daily Kos, Eschaton, and Hullaballo
11. Improv
12. Ornette Coleman
13. Amy Poehler
14. Mitch Hedberg
15. Early Feminists
16. Frederick Douglass
17. Chicago
18. Abraham Lincoln
19. The first Star Wars movie
20. The Velvet Underground
21. Netflix
22. Candy bars, especially Snickers
23. The spread of second-tier holidays like Halloween and Valentine's
24. Edward P. Jones
25. Donald Barthelme
26. Lois V. Vierk
27. The Federalists and the Anti-Federalists
28. Flickr
29. The New York School of poets
30. Joan LaBarbara
31. Joan Mitchell
32. Charles Mingus
33. Dave Douglas
34. Thelonious Monk
35. Uma Thurman
36. Orson Welles
37. Mark Twain
38. Anti-smoking campaigns from the 70s, and the lost public liberalism from that era in general.
39. Movie popcorn
40. Pixar
41. The Believer
42. Kasper Hauser
43. Philip Guston
44. New York City
45. Air travel
46. Increasingly better food
47. Iowa
48. The Kansas City Chiefs
49. The voice of Charles Kurralt
50. All Charlie Brown holiday specials

Friday, November 03, 2006

Getting in a post

Lacey's been using the computer, and I wrote a longer post that just was lost to the ether. Sigh.

More tomorrow.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Go Idaho!

Goddamn. I like this ad. Go Idaho.

YouTube - Legless Cheetah, by Shannon McCormick

More YouTubey goodness. This time a performance of my piece, Legless Cheetah, at the No Shame 20th anniversary. From what I know, LC is the most performed piece in No Shame history. This one draws out a sexual subtext that was not in my initial interpretation.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Allen Ginsberg Sings on Firing Line

During NaBloPoMo expect a lot of YouTube posts from me. Why? Well, they're easy as hell to do. Got no idea for content on your blog? Hey, check out this video from (fill in number, then time unit) ago! In this case, almost 40 years ago. This one goes out to my man JC, with whom I watched a pretty decent Ginsberg documentary in the early 90s. This footage was in that documentary.

At the time, I remember thinking Buckley's sidelong look toward the camera was like that of the talent agent for whom Michigan J. Frog had not performed. A kind of "what the hell am I dealing with here" look, which on the talent agent is hilarious and on Buckley, well, it's entertaining but I still despise the man's politics.

What I couldn't know at the time is how much Ginsberg resembles a more self-confident version on Dr. Tobias Funke from Arrested Development.