2022 April❮❮prevnext❯❯

April 1, 2022

Heh, came up in conversation that once upon a time I got to play in a flash mob kind of deal with John Batiste, and then in another group someone posted this video I was unaware of:

April 2, 2022


Open Photo Gallery

April 3, 2022


Nature is to zoos as God is to churches.
Margaret Atwood

A divorce is like an amputation: you survive it, but there's less of you.
Margaret Atwood

Manson's Law of Avoidance: The more something threatens your identity, the more you will avoid it.
Mark Manson

I remember that we were playing "So What", one of Miles' compositions - from, you know, late 50s, I guess. And Tony Williams was playing drums, Ron Carter bass, Wayne Shorter saxophone. And it was a really hot night, the music was tight, it was powerful, it was innovative... and FUN. We were having a lot of fun and the music was ON.

Tony Williams was banging on the drums and right in the middle of Miles' solo when he was playing one of his AMAZING solos, and I'm trying, I'm in there, and I'm playing... right in the middle of his solo I play the WRONG CHORD. A chord that was... it just sounded COMPLETELY wrong, it sounded like a big mistake... and I did this and I went like this [gasps] and I put my hands around my ears and Miles paused for... a second.

And then he played some notes that made my chord right, he made it correct, which ASTOUNDED me. I couldn't believe what I heard. Miles was able to make something that was wrong into something that was right, with the power of the choice of notes that he made and that feeling that he had.

And so I couldn't play for about a minute, couldn't even touch the piano. But what I realize now is that Miles didn't hear it as a mistake. He heard it as something that happened, just an event, and so that was part of the reality of what was happening at that moment and he dealt with it. He... found something that since he didn't hear it as a mistake he felt it was his responsibility to find something that fit and he was able to do that.

That taught me a very big lesson about not only music, but about life. We can look for the world to be as we would like to be as individuals, make it easy for me, that idea, we can look for that. But I think the important thing is that we can grow. And the only way we can grow is to have a mind that's open enough to accept situations, to be able to experience situations as they are, and to turn them into medicine, turn poison into medicine. Take whatever situation you have and make something constructive happen with it. That's what I learned from that situation with Miles.

April 4, 2022

Welp 15 lbs I lost the first 2 1/2 months of quarantine, welcome back :-D

on Carlo Rovelli's "Helgoland"

I bought Dirac's book, in the gray Boringhieri edition. It smelled good. (I always sniff books before buying them: the smell of a book is decisive.)
Carlo Rovelli

Individual objects are the way in which they interact. If there was an object that had no interactions, no effect upon anything, emitted no light, attracted nothing and repelled nothing, was not touched and had no smell . . . it would be as good as nonexistent. To speak of objects that never interact is to speak of something--even if it existed--that could not concern us. It is not even clear what it would mean to say that such objects "exist." The world that we know, that relates to us, that interests us, what we call "reality," is the vast web of interacting entities, of which we are a part, that manifest themselves by interacting with each other. It is with this web that we are dealing.
Carlo Rovelli, "Helgoland"
The discovery of quantum theory, I believe, is the discovery that the properties of any entity are nothing other than the way in which that entity influences others. It exists only through its interactions. Quantum theory is the theory of how things influence each other. And this is the best description of nature that we have.
Carlo Rovelli, "Helgoland"
In high school I wrote a poem that I think carries a similar energy.
A rock sat in the woods, thinking,
for many years, of many things.
Realized God and His plan
How to perfect life for plant and man
but it was a rock, and rocks can't speak
so it had to keep it to itself

In other words, the entire value of interiority is ENTIRELY dependent on the ability to make connections outside. Surfaces vs Essences. While it's a bit fraught to seek out books to confirm one own's pre-existing notions, I am so pleased that this book really leans into the idea of interactions - what it calls the "relational" interpretation of quantum theory - as being so central to everything.
If we look at things in this way, there is nothing special in the "observations" introduced by Heisenberg: any interaction between two physical objects can be seen as an observation.
Carlo Rovelli, "Helgoland"
That confirms another notion I have; the language of "observer" for quantum events (especially when inflated to macro events, ala Schrödinger's cat (which Rovelli nicely changes to a cat w/ a sleeping draught, no need for so many dead cats)) is a little misleading. It invites questions like "well what defines observer, does it have to be conscious" and from their speculation into the connection between consciousness and the quantum... but really, ANY interaction is an "observation".
The fact that we live at the bottom of a deep gravity well, on the surface of a gas covered planet going around a nuclear fireball 90 million miles away and think this to be normal is obviously some indication of how skewed our perspective tends to be.
Douglas Adams

If we imagine the totality of things, we are imagining being outside the universe, looking at it from out there. But there is no "outside" to the totality of things. The external point of view is a point of view that does not exist. Every description of the world is from inside it. The externally observed world does not exist; what exists are only internal perspectives on the world which are partial and reflect one another. The world is this reciprocal reflection of perspectives.
Carlo Rovelli, "Helgoland"
So, this can be seen a serious challenge to my view of "the only thing that matters is the objective truth" - the "view from God's throne whether or not there's a divine butt in that chair", the idea of an objective yardstick, where any authority only matters in the sense that it is a better or worse mirror of that absolute truth. If that kind of view doesn't exist, is a kind of meaningless term even... well, it doesn't seem like the best thing to build a sense of morality and epistemology around!

I guess I look for an "out" to reconcile my view with Rovelli's point - the overlap may deal with "probabilities". The uncertainty about any given view being accurate to "The Truth" is so fundamental to this idea as I live it - I find any faith suspect; every view needs to be amenable to alteration, or else it's just dogma.

Like it's all about predictions. Theories about stuff that will happen, where that critical interaction that creates reality is yet to have have happened - that's what I'm thinking about. You could have a theory that says tomorrow ducks will go moo or rocks will start floating in midair, but that theory very likely to be confirmed! So maybe, then, when I talk about "most accurate view of the Truth" as a way of comparing different viewpoints, what I really mean is what are the most LIKELY to be proven true once the interaction has occurred.

It reminds me of the other part of my outlook, that any system that depends on belief in a one time, "special revelation" is suspect. (And a lot of faiths really bank on that kind of event). And I guess it's because if the "chain of interactions" from the supernatural event or revelation is so thin, that it just seems unlikely that there aren't more interactions we can have in the meanwhile to verify the Truth of the thing.
Nature follows its simple rules, but the complexity of things often renders the general laws irrelevant to us. Knowing that my girlfriend obeys Maxwell's equations will not help me to make her happy.
Carlo Rovelli, "Helgoland"

However mysterious the mind-body problem may be for us, we should always remember that it is a solved problem for nature. All we have to do is figure out that solution by naturalistic means.
Erik C. Banks

External perception is an internal dream which proves to be in harmony with external things; and instead of calling 'hallucination' a false perception, we must call external perception 'a confirmed hallucination.'
Hippolyte Taine

April 6, 2022

Some deep lore - this rant about the (un-)wisdom of parsing html via regex (a bit more of an explanation here)

April 7, 2022

Wish this Oral History of Blue Man Group went further! I got to see them in NYC when their show "Tubes" was pretty new - it started late '91 and I think I would've seen it... 92? 93?

Their albums are pretty great as well, acoustically very interesting, especially for a fan of big percussion such as myself...

new music playlist for march

Music I added last month - pretty good selection, really. A lot from that "Inventing Anna" documentary...

Ukraine Russia War
Catchy little tune making the rounds in praise of the Turkish Drone being used by Ukraine forces to destroy Russians from the sky.
Bill Bailey, Won't You Please Come Home
Bobby Darin
High energy version of old classic, grabbed it after playing it at a mardi gras gig. Fun for me to sing solos to.

Fictional Aisle
Tall Boy Special
Funny song about impossible or at least very unlikely foods, from Dog Eggs to Celery Farts and Reverse Watermelon... From a tiktok where one of the musician's partners is amused by it from the other room.

100 Miles and Running (feat. Wale & John Lindahl)
Funky hiphop (I think sampling "Apache" ala Young MC's Know How) with some TRULY incredible stunt-FAST lyric delivery (go to like 5:17)

Hiphop do heavy samples of James Brown esp "Good Foot", found it on the Netflix "Inventing Anna" series about Anna Delvey.
Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition!
Kay Kyser and His Orchestra
Novelty WW2 song, the title has been in my head for awhile, probably inspired by thoughts of Ukraine.

Young Fellaz Brass Band
Great NOLA Street Music - big stuff.
Own It
Rico Nasty
Hiphop from that "Inventing Anna" documentary.

East West
Omer Agca
Excellent little "middle eastern" crossover(?) beat used when Anna Delvy goes to Morocco in that Netflix documentary.

Always Be You
Montaigne & David Byrne
I love the idea that "A Writer At Pitchfork Critically Said [[David Byrne]'d Collaborate For A Bag Of Doritos", and I know Montaigne from her MBMBAB cover. I like the line about This Daniel Kitson quote which is astonishingly beautiful.

La La Blues
Pokey LaFarge
Sophie mentioned this song when I brought up Bill Bailey... guess LaFarge is known for doing this old style really well.
Drum Cadences
The Ohio State University Marching Band & Dr. Jon R. Woods
This SNL skit on OSU's cover of Don't Stop Believin' made me search... I didn't go for the song but the drumline from the same album. is pretty dope. "Do you guys hear it? Its TUBAS playing the BASSLINE! Like, who thinks of that?"
Drunken Sailor (feat. Bobby Waters)
This tumblr video - a farmers sea shanty - made me look for a cover of this song (which I sang in Elementary School) I do love the seep bass voice of the guy singing on this...

Friends Like Us
Danger Twins
Kinda corny retro honky tonk piano modern piece that I heard playing at a CVS.
Raising Hell (feat. Big Freedia)
Somehow this video made me want to hear some bounce music, so I looked around - this song is a nice mix.

Florence + the Machine
"We argue in the kitchen about whether to have children, about the world ending, and the scale of my ambition" is a helluva lyric, recommended from here on the McGST blog

Really interesting mini-comic with a GREAT physical/visual metaphor for resiliency (err, in the good sense, don't want to get into the discourse of how it sucks that people have to be resilient.)

It's very similar to the Two Big Things that helps me get along: one is the idea of Plan A, Plan B, Plan C, Plan D......Plan Z. Whatever. With the assurance that I might not get the Plan A or B I want, but it's unlikely that I will even get to C or D. But it's ok if I do, I'll survive.

Which brings me to the second of the Two Big Things: I'll survive. And also, I won't survive! Nothing is Life or Death; everything is Life AND Death. And through a lot of thinking and mindfulness (and writing my own damn comic book) I've come to peace with how This Too Shall Pass, whether I would prefer it pass or not.

Glasses I have known...


Open Photo Gallery

First pair, circa fifth grade. Here with Todd Beecher. Kinda ugly and generic frames, but you know. It was the 80s.

Oh dear. Oh dear, oh dear. My middle school serial-killer-glasses half-tints.

I'm not sure if I skipped a pair, but these red wire frames weren't terrible. I feel like they were always askew though.

My college pair, shown here NYE's at Time Square, 1995 becoming 1996, with Veronika

1996, around college graduation... These were some of my favorites... hard to make out the green wire, but the cool thing was they came with spring-y clip-on sunglasses. Loved 'em.

Blue frames similar to the green ones, with magnets for the clip-ons, in 2001. (wearing those roll-lens shades they give you when they dilate your eyes, which I thought were super cool.)

Copper colored half-frames. 2004ish.

Very similar frames and a weirdly similar pose in 2007.

BONUS! We will never see novelty glasses as good as what we had this New Year's Eve.

2013 - modern geek regulation standard

Been sporting these since 2015! I think oversized glasses are a bit safer. But they're really bad for eating pickles, as you can see.

Overall this project confirms my hunch that I've had these current glasses longer than any before- I replaced the lenses last year in fact. Which sort of ties into my alarm of the stretching of time, when you grow up you get a whole new world every 4 years, but now the grooves are much longer.

Sunglasses I have known

Small follow up to my "glasses I have known" dig yesterday, this time for sunglasses. Sometimes it seems odd to me I survived all college without sunglasses.

Open Photo Gallery

I had this one goofy pair of mirrored round circle sunglasses in high school. I remember feeling weirdly objectified wearing them during a sadly rainy trip to the amusement park Cedar Point, and the girls in the group would use me as a mirror to check on their late 80s hair.

I remember getting these springy clipons at Cohens Fashion Optical at the Cambridgeside Galleria, inspired by Rebekah's glasses. Fun fact: you can see these glasses today, they are being worn by a gargoyle sitting in front of our condo.

Moved onto magnetic clip-ons.

Switching to half-frame regular glasses, I also switched to prescription sunglasses. Curiously small, and kind of bleh.

Larger but kind of generic ones.

Oh man I loved these shades from Eye-Q. Bought two pair. Know I lost one in the Atlantic Ocean doing parasailing...

I love mirrored sunglasses. Maybe its a cyberpunk thing? I got these tinted purple-blue to match the main colors of my band.

I've switched to wearing my cheaper Zenni yellow mirrorshades. Shown here with my full quarantine look.

(reminds me of how the definition of stupidity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different result, but that is also the definition of practice...)
Paul Robertson is the best with pixels.

April 11, 2022


Open Photo Gallery

Wordable as the little used opposite of "ineffable", an opposite I was thinking about awhile back.

April 12, 2022


Raising the volume when listening to music can be equated to taking drugs. You can only go so high before you start to lose the ability to enjoy what you love.

The story both starts and ends with the exact same sentence, the last in a sad way. "She smiled at me, like any stranger would."

April 13, 2022

Reading "How to Hide an Empire" about USA's expansionism.

So Republicans have a claim to having had been the abolitionist Party of Lincoln, and modern partisans like to may hay with that- utterly sidestepping the reversal that happened after the Civil Rights Act, the Solid South changing from a Democratic stronghold to the Republican base.

But in this book, before the pivot, it is interesting to see that it's the (at the time, more Northerner) Republicans who tend towards expansionism and imperialism, and the Democrats who fight that, even before the pivot I mention. Now to be fair, that anti-Imperialism might also be tinged with a kind of "America First" isolationism that I might not like either, but it certainly puts the lie to a simplified "North/South swap following the Civil Rights Act" model
"Coward" should really mean "to move in the direction of a cow"

April 14, 2022


from 9 Ways To Imagine Jeff Bezos' Wealth, via kottke
"Well, Sheriff, maybe I do look at things differently than other people. Is that wrong? I live by my wits. I'm not above bending the law now and then to keep clothes on my back or food in my stomach. I live the kind of life that other people would just love to live if they only had the courage. Who's to say that the boy would be happier your way or mine? Why not let him decide?"

"Nah, I'm afraid it don't work that way. You can't let a young 'un decide for himself. He'll grab at the first flashy thing with shiny ribbons on it, then when he finds out there's a hook in it, it's too late. The wrong ideas come packaged with so much glitter it's hard to convince him that other things might be better in the long run, and all a parent can do is say, 'Wait. Trust me,' and try to keep temptation away."
David Brown and Andy Griffith on The Andy Griffith Show, "Opie's Hobo Friend".
Hm. Lately I've been thinking about how my worldview is extremely anti-authoritarian - since there's one shared reality, any authority is legitimate only so far as it reflects reality... but with so our limited, idiosyncratic, and often conflicting viewpoints, we can never be sure which viewpoint is the most accurate reflection of reality.

And that has informed how I deal with kids (and has for LONG before I was able to put this worldview into words - I used to just call it "I treat them as small adults"). Like not totally, sometimes I lay down the law to keep them from harm, and I certainly get into teacher-not-learner mode, but I'm inclined to take them seriously, and they seem to appreciate it not being talked down to.

So I guess my problem with Andy Griffin's wisdom is... I'm not sure adults are good at identifying shiny ribbons and glitter with hooks either.

(UPDATE: as Matt directed my attention to: a parental assumption that society is somehow going beyond "some people are gay or trans" and somehow packaging that as "ribbons and glitter", and so that parents are right to do whatever it takes to steer there young'uns away, is also pretty bad)

April 15, 2022

A barometric low hung over the Atlantic. It moved eastward toward a high-pressure area over Russia without as yet showing any inclination to bypass this high in a northerly direction. The isotherms and isotheres were functioning as they should. The air temperature was appropriate relative to the annual mean temperature and to the aperiodic monthly fluctuations of the temperature. The rising and setting of the sun, the moon, the phases of the moon, of Venus, of the rings of Saturn, and many other significant phenomena were all in accordance with the forecasts in the astronomical yearbooks. The water vapor in the air was at its maximal state of tension, while the humidity was minimal. In a word that characterizes the facts fairly accurately, even if it was a bit old-fashioned: It was a fine day in August 1913.
Robert Musil, "The Man without Qualities" (translation Sophie Wilkins)

April 16, 2022

I just got a pair of noise-cancelling headphones. I'm actually not sure how often I will use the noise cancellation, since I don't usually don't need/want to be that isolated from my environment. But playing with the toggle to turn it on and off... man, noise cancellation is some seriously weird voodoo stuff.

April 17, 2022


Now more than ever Happy Holidays...

Note to self: years ago we asked if the line in The Young Punx / Amanda Palmer's Map of Tasmania was "Becky!" or "Funky" or "F*** It!" or what. Answer: fxxkit...

quotes via "How to Hide an Empire"

Lincoln, West Dakota, Deseret, Cimarron, and Montezuma--all of which sought admission to the union--did not become states.
Daniel Immerwahr, "How to Hide an Empire"
Potential alternate States of the USA are so rich for alternate world thinking... (Also mentioned Sequoyah, a state based on the communities of Native Americans...)
Guano was noxious, "a beastly smelling-bottle sort of mess, looking like bad snuff mixed with rotten kittens," as a Vermont paper put it.
Daniel Immerwahr, "How to Hide an Empire"

[Philippines Governor] Governor-General Forbes found time for other pursuits. "I get up leisurely when I feel like it, write in my journal sparingly so as not to run into the error of being too voluminous, and play a few hands of cards to iron the crinkles out of my mind." In the afternoons, Forbes would spend "an hour or so" reading newspaper clippings, but he would stop at four to "take a ride, or play polo, according to the day." "I have let the great world sweep by," he purred.
Daniel Immerwahr, "How to Hide an Empire"
The crinkles thing reminds me of how I like a first thing game of Wordle
The United States military is first and foremost an unfathomable network of typists and file clerks, secondarily a stupendous mechanism for moving stuff from one part of the world to another and last and least a fighting organization.
Neal Stephenson in Cryptonomicon

O God! that whole damned war business is about nine hundred and ninety parts diarrhoea to one part glory: the people who like the wars should be compelled to fight the wars . . . I say, God damn the wars--all wars
Walt Whitman

Suddenly these pesky foreigners rose up before us in their own lands, doggedly refusing to understand our tongue, no matter how slowly and loudly we spoke it. It was little short of outrageous.
Mario Pei

Ewww - companies that scrape funeral home obituary listings and make their own obituaries, so they can sell some of the flowers and other auxiliary. But adding injury to insult, they have bad, dumb bots that rewrite the things so they don't violate copyright laws.

(Note to self, this liberty bell with legs poster was "Sweet Liberty" not "1776")

April 19, 2022

The logic of aging human bodies: ok, sure, you'll heal more slowly in general but at least we can get your fingernails growing at an ever increasing clip. Oh, also lets divert some of that energy to keep growing your ears and nose.
an angel would fuck a streetlamp and it would be nothing. it would be like a dog thoughtlessly rutting against a couch: pure instinctual pleasure chasing with something that may elicit but not share in your libido. but if an angel fucked a cell tower then viable offspring could very well result

April 20, 2022

a momentary trance of emotional clarity

Sometimes when you're alone and everything is quiet, you feel a certain placeless intensity that drifts in like a fog. It's subtle at first, lingering somewhere between fidgety boredom and accidental meditation. Maybe you're sitting up in bed on a dark morning before the day begins, staring blankly at a spot on the wall, thinking about life. Or you've arrived somewhere a few minutes early to pick someone up, and you turn off the car and find yourself alone with your thoughts. You take a breath and look around at the still life of the parking lot: a few shrubs swaying in the wind, the arrhythmic tinking of the cooling engine, the keys still swinging in the ignition.

You begin to sense that something is happening--as when you notice a movie pushing into a close-up but can't figure out what it is you're supposed to be taking from it. Details that usually strike you as banal now seem utterly alien. The stitching on your shoes, the tendons moving inside your wrists. The saplings, reaching. How delicate and fleeting it all seems, everything struggling just to exist. You feel a kind of melancholic trance sweeping over you. A rush of clarity, as if you've shaken yourself out of a dream. You are here. You are alive. You are *in it*.

You look around at all the other people who happen to share this corner of the world, and imagine where they came from, marveling that all of their paths managed to cross at this particular point in time. You think back to the series of events that brought you here, your choices and your mistakes and your achievements, such as they are. All the twists and turns over the years. It wasn't what you thought it would be, and yet you can still look back on all the things you've lost, and the opportunities that came and went, and feel a pang of gratitude that it happened at all. And now here you are, feeling a kind of joyful grief for your life, in all its blessings and mysteries and chances and changes.

You look around with a new sense of gratitude, taking in the complexity of things: raindrops skittering down a window, tall trees leaning in the wind, clouds of cream swirling in your coffee. Everything falls quiet, and the words start to lose their meaning. It all seems to mix together, until you can't tell the difference between the ordinary and the epic. And you remember that you too are a guest on this Earth. Your life is not just a quest, or an opportunity, or a story to tell; it's also just an experience, to be lived for its own sake. It doesn't have to mean anything other than what it is. A single moment can still stand on its own, as a morsel of existence.

But after a minute or two, you'll feel your hand reaching for your phone or the car radio, eager to drown out your thoughts with distractions. Perhaps there's a part of you that's instinctively wary of lingering too long in any one moment. We can breathe this world in, and hold on to it as long as we can, but we can't just stop there. We have to keep moving, digging around for some deeper meaning, hoping to find an escape hatch between one experience and the next. So we never feel stuck inside one little moment, one little life.

[Latin ambedo, "I sink my teeth into." Pronounced "am-bee-doh."]
John Koenig, "The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows"
The whole book is kind of these intellectual Goth Sniglets (if folks remember Sniglets - "an often humorous word made up to describe something for which no dictionary word exists.") and the mood tends so downward that it's not always easy to get through.

This passage is a lot of what I was trying to capture in my comic Of The Moments. (Also the ending passage of American Beauty.

April 21, 2022


Netflix is the UHF of Our Time
What does angel meat taste like fried in oil?

April 22, 2022

TIL about rabbit starvation - I'm sure my diet gets plenty of fat along with he protein but in a time that emphasizes lean meats, interesting to know they aren't an unalloyed good.

(Yes as always a good mix is best.)

April 23, 2022


via. Honestly for me I think creation is probably the point of humanity, especially as distinct from other animals.

April 24, 2022


Open Photo Gallery

April 25, 2022

Being wanted is so much better than being needed

And your own life while it's happening to you never has any atmosphere until it's a memory.
Andy Warhol

from "The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows"

Keep to the middle course. Steal bits of wax and feathers discarded by other, better fliers. Let the sun rise and fall. Let the waves pound themselves to mist, again and again. Your task is not to be flawless. Your task is to fly.
John Koenig, "The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows"

Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and living alone won't either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up. And when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself that you tasted as many as you could.
Louise Erdrich, "The Painted Drum"

We all have our little solipsistic delusions, ghastly intuitions of utter singularity: that we are the only one in the house who ever fills the ice-cube tray, who unloads the clean dishwasher, who occasionally pees in the shower, whose eyelid twitches on first dates; that only we take casualness terribly seriously; that only we fashion supplication into courtesy; that only we hear the whiny pathos in a dog's yawn, the timeless sigh in the opening of the hermetically-sealed jar, the splattered laugh in the frying egg, the minor-D lament in the vacuum's scream; that only we feel the panic at sunset the rookie kindergartner feels at his mother's retreat. That only we love the only-we. That only we need the only-we. Solipsism binds us together.... That we feel lonely in a crowd; stop not to dwell on what's brought the crowd into being. That we are, always, faces in a crowd.
David Foster Wallace, "Girl with Curious Hair"

There's an optical illusion that's easy to fall for, even if you know the trick: the more distant you are from other people, the more invulnerable they appear.
John Koenig, "The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows"

...the awareness that although you'd like to think you perceive things cleanly and objectively, you've never felt the vibe of a room that doesn't happen to have you in it.
John Koenig, "The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows"

Your life is written in indelible ink. There's no going back to erase the past, tweak your mistakes, or fill in missed opportunities. When the moment's over, your fate is sealed. But if you look closer, the ink never really dries on any of your experiences. They can change their meaning the longer you look at them.

It's often said that there's nothing to be gained in looking backward. But there are ways of thinking about the past that aren't just nostalgia or regret; a kind of questioning that can allow fresh context to trickle in over the years, slowly filling out the picture like an inkblot painting, right there in front of you.
John Koenig, "The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows"

Maybe it's not so bad to dwell on the past, as long as it brings you closer to the truth. If nothing else, it's a way to push back against the oversimplification of time. Trying to keep a memory alive, as something more than just a caricature of itself.

Maybe we should think of memory itself as an art form, in which the real work begins as soon as the paint hits the canvas.

And a work of art is never finished, only abandoned.
John Koenig, "The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows"

We can never know what to want, because, living only one life, we can neither compare it with our previous lives nor perfect it in our lives to come.
Milan Kundera, "The Unbearable Lightness of Being"

moriturism: (n.) a tiny jolt of awareness that someday you will die, which leaves you lying awake in bed whispering silently to yourself, *Oh, right, this is it*; an unsettling reminder that your life is not just a game you're playing or a story you'll be telling later, but your one and only glimpse of what the universe has to offer, like a kid waking up in the back seat of the family car at night, having just pulled into a bright neon gas station, looking around for a moment or two, before settling back in for the long road trip, sleeping for miles and miles off into the dark.
John Koenig, "The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows"

Our songs will all be silenced, but what of it? Go on singing.
Orson Welles

Open Photo Gallery

The 1984 Atari Arcade game Peter Pack-Rat feels like a fever dream, maybe because it never got ported to consoles? My arcade at the Aviation Mall near Glens Falls NY had it though.

April 27, 2022

Most e-reader UIs are bad about giving a sense of the size of a book, and lack a graphical view of how far along you are, so realizing a book is big is an unfolding process: "what I'm STILL at 2%?"
Just another Monday Night in Gunland 🙃🙃🙃
Whoever named frogs got it 100% right. Those things are frogs

Pretty hostile of a job to require a college degree. "You and/or your parents must take out loans of $100,000 or we won't let your log into SalesForce in our windowless building next to the airport."

April 28, 2022


April 29, 2022

"What's the primary difference [between the music/bop at school and your main work]?"
"In New Orleans, you'll hear more Louis Armstrong, it's more dancing, it's more for the people. And then when you go to play the other stuff, you're really playing for the next musician next to you..."
"And they're barely listening..."
"Oh they're listening, but the crowd might not be listening."
That sentiment is so near and dear to my heart. I know part of it's a little laziness on my part, but while the main reason I play tuba as much as I do is to enable other musicians, but my real goal is to get them to connect to audiences, not to try and wow each other with finesse.

I also liked "That's a New Orleans thing - we put a tuba on ANYTHING. You see a washboard player, he got a tuba player..."

Always loved this Coltrane diagram. Wrote about it (and also state machines) at my devblog.
New Trek Opening... Thinking about the Trek original crawl, and how ST:TNG changing it from "Where No Man Has Gone Before" to "Where No One Has Gone Before" makes it less sexist but more colonial? Like, there are usually beings already living below wherever the Enterprise parks itself in orbit... (Sigh. I guess "No human" is too wonky and too specific for a multi-species crew)

April 30, 2022


Who was this guy? How does he fit into the McDonaldland Pantheon? How did the hamburger beings' heads evolve such that "Mayor McCheese" and "Officer Big Mac" have horizontal burgers for heads? (And this beyond the usual sketchy metaphysics of a food product involved with production for consumption of and enthusiastic marketing for itself and peers.)

Open Photo Gallery

2022 April❮❮prevnext❯❯