19 January 2009

Obama Countdown

View all Washington DC events at Eventful

01 March 2007

the market

fantastic. the stock market has plunged again, the second time in three days. (ink below, sorry working off of safari which doesn't allow rf posts)

what does this mean. well from an environmental prospective, bush will just use this as another excuse to not regulate industrial pollutants. whenever an economic crisis looms, all the "pet" projects get quickly swept under the rug.

come summer, when the DJIA dips below 10K for the first time since 2001 (source?), bush will be pressed with how he can account for econmic failures and the growing cost of the iraq war. well, with the bush tax cuts still in effect for another 3 years and the war being paid for by cutting into medicare (and funded by the chinese) you better believe there will be a greater cry from coal producers to limit regulations to keep the cost of fuel low to help "jump start" our lagging economy.

this dip is the shot heard around the world for the great decline and fall of the american empire.


03 February 2007

blog conscious

with the ubiquity of blogs, there seems to be a growing consensus that blogs have become the whipping boy of our anxiety. more people are making the push to write about the external rather than the internal. a noble goal, no doubt as it's never as interesting to reading about a fellow person's neurosis as it is to write about.

so-- with the exposing of memoir writers as frauds, we all want to write honestly, yet in doing so pledge to write about the superficial (meaning, things above and beyond the surface [self] as opposed to only surface deep.)

i've always wanted my writings to be based, however loosely on observations and insight; a way to inform and simultaneously be informed. but why add to the cacophony of voices struggling to be heard? why not just write for it own sake, and accept whatever form of therapy it provides in the moment.

i'd be happy with that.

think of it like a sound wave. when two waves of the same pitch clash they actually cancel each other out. so if you are contributing to the echo chamber, be that politically of otherwise, not only are you reiterating what's already been stated, you are in effect negating it's importance and message.

i'm always reminded of what sam philips - a music producer at sun records in the 50's and sixties- said "if you're not doing something different, you're not doing anything."

so why not just say it, because to define something is to make in definite, rather than infinite. and limitations can destroy writing.

19 January 2007


my sincerest apologies. i've been sorting some business out and have been a bit confused. i have a lot to write about but can't seem to put it all in words. trying to reconcile a lot of ideas and momentum.

here's some bad art to help you through the night:

30 December 2006

bon(o) new(s)

after releasing two albums full of blaze tracks which all sounded the same- following their stellar and maybe greatest record Pop*- bono has once again announced that U2 will be taking a new direction in their follow up to all that you can't leave behind II (aka how to dismantle an atomic bomb)

[note: a live record was released between these two releases with the unfortunate title hasta la vista, baby! if that's not an indicator of mediocrity, i'm not sure what is. tho it was recorded on the pop-mart tour in 1997]

so bono had this to say about the new record:
"We're gonna continue to be a band, but maybe the rock will have to go; maybe the rock has to get a lot harder. But whatever it is, it's not gonna stay where it is."

He said he's like U2 to explore compositions featuring just voice and acoustic guitar. "I would like to do a couple of tunes in that direction, with just a lot of space around the voice," he said. "I'd like to strip things down; that's something I'd be very interested in at the moment."

in other words, bono- already in love with hearing himself talk- wants to get rid of the band and draw even more attention to the Bono Vox of his namesake. as if the heavy handed moments on the last two records, in which the production volume is lowered so as to highlight some poignant line bono wished to deliver wasn't enough.

oh, and did i mention 'vertigo' was originally titled 'gun control.' i'm not making this up.

*[note:i'll be happy to explain the brilliance of pop at a later date. auctung baby is a close second.]

01 November 2006

disqualified halowe'en costumes

for women:
a slutty version of anything: firewomen, police officers, witches.

for men:
'Era-man' is not a costume. buying a "crazy" polyester shirt and pants from a thrift store are grounds for dismissal.

for either gender:
anything obviously straight out of a bag. especially when you can see the fold marks in the "snow white" dress.

all soul's day treat: P.O.S. Daytrotter session. Download now!

31 October 2006

cult of [comedic] personality

the cult of personality is a relatively new phenomenon in the world of comedy. the act of creating a comic persona and then staying in character at all times has been harnessed by few in the past but it is becoming more frequent in the last few years. for some it's playing on a one-note joke, but the best characters reflect the absurd times we live in. politicians and cel├ębutantes too self-righteous, too self-absorbed and too determined to stay "on message" to not only miss the joke, but unwittingly add more fodder to the echo chamber in this netosphere.

let's look at three case studies.

1. Dane Cook:
possibly the least funny "comedian" on the circuit (rolling stone recently inquired how Cook has come so far- an HBO special, Employee of the Month with Jessica Simpson- and is able to call himself a comedian while never telling any jokes.) maybe there's a reason there are not jokes/ bits/ clips on his myspace page. not to mention the inanity of the SUper FInger hand gesture (right). but i wonder if he's all persona, riding a brand that someone dreamed up. come up with a gimmick, prop him up with just enough attitude, and he's the kevin federline of comedy.

2. Stephen Colbert:
in a recent New York Magazine cover article, colbert discussed the need to distinguish between his 'act' and his real-life persona. he's been asked to make public appearances- most notably the white house correspondence dinner (transcript)- where he's unsure as to which colbert they are expecting to show up. so he's debating making the distinction of "cole-bert" being his true self, and "cole-bear" his pseudo-right wing propagandist. nevertheless he is certainly one of the finest satirists working today. i had the good fortune to catch a taping of the colbert report a few months back and it's incredible how easily he is able to turn it on and off. furthermore he is so burrowed in the character and has such an attuned sense of the irony in the conservatives argument that it's no surprise that republican candidates up for re-election are refusing to go on his show (la times). let's just hope he doesn't turn out like mother night.

3. Sacha Baron Cohen
arguably the most consistent prankster. jimmy "laugh-at-every-sketch-i'm-in" fallen could learn a lot from the cohen's stone face. in the publicity campaign for his new film Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan he has presented an unparalleled consistency qua Borat for press announcements live on CNN, interviews on various talk shows and magazine interviews. cohen's Da Ali G Show is a fascinating glimpse into duping unsuspecting interviewees (akin to colbert's "better know a district") including newt gingrich.

however, to reverse the process and be interviewed in character is a brilliant ploy for the movie. will farrell has appeared on conan o'brien in past years in various characters, but more as a gag than anything. for cohen, known only to a niche audience in the US, to call this a success is an understatement. (his next film, based on his other character bruno was just picked up by universal to the tune of $42.5 million.)

the real distinction here is that to be the interviewer, one can control the situation and steer the discussion into a particular direction. while a lot of interviews are typically predetermined, or the questions are scripted, there is always a varying degree of improvisation. and in the dozens of interviews cohen has yet to slip and break character. here's a particularly good amalgamation of his UK publicity tour. but how many grey suits does he own?