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from time for pride

Re Orlando: fuck fundamentalism of any flavor. When you "know" you have the answers before the questions are even asked, you're part of the problem. If your doctrine is more important than basic humanity, you are the problem. Anyway, then off to march with Brass Republic at Boston Pride: (and after School of Honk at Arlington Porchfest)

from May 22, 2016

Porch-i-oke by Sari w/ Rev Dave and the Reprobates was a lot of fun!

Teenage logic leaps swiftly and without fear.
Daniel Nester, "Shader"

from joe mac!

Some nice footage from Joe Mac of JP Honk at the Jamaica Plain Open Studios juried exhibition last night:

JP Honk

A video posted by @jmceachern36 on

I really liked Cracked Against Trite Inspirational Memes. Especially the stuff about travel; I've done my fair share, but I think it's easy to get hung up on "I want to be the kind of person who travels" vs actually absorbing the experiences -- I know my interest is usually more in getting a feel for the differences in mundane day to day life stuff.

from April 30, 2016

Russian Warplane Flies in 'Unsafe' Manner Near U.S. Aircraft The start of the War With Russia, or maybe just revenge for "Top Gun".
Of course, we know that humans are political, but we still often assume that our political actions come from thinking about beliefs and desires. Even in election season we assume that voters figure out who will enact the policies they want, and we're surprised when it turns out that they care more about who belongs to their group or who is the top dog.

Nice debut for BABAM! - the Boston Area Brigade of Activist Musicians, a loose affiliation of like minded players from various bands for last minute but worthy events and big umbrella gatherings.... today we supported the rally to get Somerville's Retirement fund divested from fossil fuels - a real loser investment these days no matter how you slice it.

(I was having a water bottle crisis where it somehow flooded by hip pack... I gotta stop carrying stuff during gigs :-) (local copy of video)

from April 5, 2016

Landed. From swimming in Barton Springs Pool to help with 80 degree weather to.... Boston.

The "locker room" at Barton Springs was open to the sky. It reminded me that I really haven't been naked outside much at all, especially in the sunlight.

Most importantly, a Dummies book assumes the reader is starting with zero knowledge on the topic.
I've always appreciated the series in almost exactly those terms.
How was my weekend at HONK!TX in Austin? Like this...

The Grand Finale at Pan Am Park. Track Suit at HonkTx #honktx

Posted by Debbie Fehrenkamp on Monday, April 4, 2016

from February 18, 2016

"Awlaki was, to a certain cast of mind, a mesmerizing preacher. This world is but a station, he proclaimed. It is the next station, the Hereafter, that matters. 'We do not belong here. We are travelling. . . . We need to prepare for death.'"
I think this is problematic with a lot of faiths, especially with an emphasis on a supernatural hereafter, and in fact the Awlaki quote reminds me of messages I would get from time to time in my Christian church upbringing. Why give a damn (so to speak) about anything around us, what in the finite can measure up to the infinite that awaits? Yeah, some faiths say God wants to be good stewards, but why worry about the planet when we're careening toward the apocalypse? (Revelation was written 19 centuries ago, and still waiting, but it must be around the corner now...) Some religions emphasize charity and kindness in the here and now but those goals have to be weighed in the balance of spreading the word and fighting the fight.

I understand faith adds to the lives of many people. On the one hand, a more mature faith is balanced by basic humanity concerns, but if you start using "basic human concerns" as a litmus test for your religion, you're down the path of admitting they might be more important than religion... that it's something with common values that might transcend which of the many, many possible faiths we cling to. I wish establishing that common ground was the priority - it seems a lot healthier than this "people of faith, any faith no matter how mutually incompatible" lined up on the righthand sheep side against the skeptics on the lefthand goat side..

I know in some ways science - or rather, what science thinks is most likely true about how the universe functions, for now - requires some kind of faith. I've often longed for a good kitchen-sink science demonstration of atomic theory! (And one of the things I found bugging me most in the Scalia retrospectives was that he thought evolution was just a theory, and a crummy theory at that.) But why science differs from most other faiths is that it offers a method of its own correction; its core is coming up with ideas, and putting them to the test, and letting other people put them to the test. Knowledge is painstakingly grown, not handed from on high, or merely homegrown in our hearts. (And science doesn't tell us what to do - you can't get ought from is -- that's the job of moral philosophy, and when people try to shove science into that role you get crap like social darwinism.)

The Secret Lives of Tumblr Teens I'm less interested in the rags-to-riches-to-rags aspect than the general take on tumblr culture; admittedly FB has been a better mirror for my old (and ongoing) kisrael.com but I really appreciate the "relatable" style culture, relative to other cultures (twitter or especially chan/twitter) it is very human.
Wow, an insult that bugs that Short-Fingered Vulgarian.
In 1990 my high school marching band travelled to Detroit for a band competition and the parade... jump to 27:50 for some fine tuba, cymbals, and majorette dancin' to "My Sharona".

Good for anyone who has a fetish for badly lit vintage shots of the Henry Ford Museum.

from February 8, 2016

Bill the Splut mentioned the first half of Bob and Ray has also passed on - great low-key comedy. (Like he said, "By the time we figured out we were introverts, it was too late to do anything about it.") This bit Bill shared is great:

Frinkiac is a great Simpsons' quote finder and meme maker:

That's one of my favorite quotes, just a reminder at how out of perspective problems are when they show up right in front of us.
A kiss is just a kiss, but a sigh is a reflex that happens a several times an hour and helps preserve lung function.
My sousaphone roots, Euclid High School Panther Marching Band!

The 1991 Homecoming Game, by the looks of it.

from October 31, 2015

Sunday I'll be joining up again with School of Honk for their weekly parade (stepping off from Thunder Road around 4, after a practice at 3) -- here's what we sounded like at HONK! fest -- I'm obscured through a lot of it it but if you look and listen you'll find me easily.

School of Honk - Honk Festival 2015 - We Got That Fire from Patrick Johnson on Vimeo.

from October 15, 2015

Whoa, people whoa are the opposite of face blind!
I'm there - or at least, my tuba bell - bobbing around in the back row on the right side:

from September 27, 2015

Yesterday Melissa, Liz, and I went to "The Big E".

I took a lot of footage for potential use as "One Second Everyday", then made a compilation of it...

Food Consumed (7 hours, 3 people):
Some of these were large amounts, some were just bits and pieces...
steak sandwich
Corn dog
Cream puff
Maple candy
Maple Cotton candy
housemade spiral chips with chili & cheese
Cider donut
Milk shake
Funnel cake well sugared
Diet coke
Pork and beans parfait
Corn On Cob with Sriracha
Fried (!) Martini
Kettle popcorn
Eclipse happening now! I love things that remind me of the clockwork mechanism of the solar system-- it took me decades to notice that, when you can see the partial moon (in particular in the day time) it's kind of like a rounded arrow head pointing towards the sun....
I just realized... for a while I've known that maybe one reason I don't like "white text on black" is my (mildish) astigmatism... it makes it hard to focus, because of how the iris has to open up. And that same reasoning might explain why I the detail of the moon seems particularly hard to make out at night.

from slow motion underdogs


from animal advent ala emberley day 2


Artistically not so great, but a fun try out of my new iPhone's slo-mo.

(Elio shared this editorial about how Star Wars was terrible for Sci-Fi, with a comment saying he kind of agreed. I started a comment but it kind of turned into a 5 paragraph mini-essay so I'm promoting it to this...)
Kindred is certainly an excellent book, but a LOT more literary and less what most people think of as "sci-fi", despite time travel elements; not that I'm the "sci-fi" police, but it feels a bit more like real-history-centered fantasy.

Star Wars brought a lived-in future look that nothing else had before; even 2001 was a bit sterile (though still astounding in its world building.) Alien/Aliens probably duplicate that feel best, later. It also had a sense of myth making, and that was a (semi-) conscious attempt to give culture epic stories to refer and relate to. And it worked.

Yeah, RotJ got back into duplicating the points (daring rescue, big death star destruction) of earlier stuff, and the prequels horribly shrunk the galaxy even more than it was when "oh btw Luke Leia and Darth are family". Still the core movie brought something new.

I think the main problem with it is that it hurt a 70s culture of smaller, less noisy and more personal films. I'm reading "The Secret History of Star Wars", and it talks about how desperate the studios were, how Easy Rider pointed the way to cheap films that could appeal to the new cultural sensibilities, but that stumbled, and then Star Wars and Jaws introduced the concept of giant blockbuster.

The other thing that book mentions is at one point Lucas had the idea of semi-annual Star Wars films, with a variety of directors and stylistic imprints. Empire happened, but was a combination of so fraught for Lucas, or something, that he retook control, and then started making his own "oh yeah I had this planned out all along" BS-myth. I have hopes that this JJ Abrams-led thing, and some set of spin-offs, might actually be more true to this spirit of neo-serials than what Lucas came up with later.



--My Aunt got me this awesome inflatable shark for my birthday... the way it swims through the air is kinda uncanny. (Makes me sad helium is going away!) Here's an attack, with tuba soundtrack.

from ...must come (kerdunk!) down


http://www.frumforum.com/stumbling-toward-disaster - Republicans brought the hand grenade of default to the knife fight of politics. Likely victim: the economy, you, me.
Silver Ball Museum @ Asbury Park boardwalk- such vast amounts of pinball. The late "Revenge from Mars" was astounding, visuals and playwise.

from what goes up...


from star lake campers, star lake campers, lift your voices, sing this song -- we're so happy, oh so happy, star lake campers sing all day long

(1 comment)

--Got a little nostalgic the other day when I put this old tape of music from Star Lake Musicamp 1990 into MP3. I found this Youtube bit of a more recent rendition of "Star Lake March" there... a kind of fun and rousing bit. Around 1:20 you see one of the odder Salvation Army traditions (err along side the pseudo-paramilitary uniforms and British-style brass bands) "the Timbrels" -- tambourines shaken in choreographed routines, often to marches.

Around 2:08 the "chorus" kicks in, the title of today's entry. (In looking up some of the lyrics it seems that they've shifted over the years, or maybe I just didn't hear them rightly.)

Coming soon: the even more exciting "Pep Song".
Someday there will be regular timely service out of Park Street on the Green Line. This is not that morning. Neither was yesterday.
And that PSA about 18 yr old drivers and txting? Super-relevant, thanks #mbta. At least a real commercial might bring some funds...
Ah well. The semi-brisk walk through frigid morning air can put some color in my cheeks. Lord knows I have enough cheek to go around.
We need not destroy the past. It is gone.
John Cage

from cleveland filler day 2


"live Webcast Fail"

Yours 'Til Niagara Falls of the Moment

--WON'T SOMEBODY THINK OF THE WATER? (Man, I need a haircut. It looks like I'm trying to hide the hairline!)
If nothing else, OH beats MA in having gas pumps where you don't have to constantly hold the handle...

from tell me again about the rabbit, george


--"Left as an Exercise for the Reader's" cover of "Donnie Darko", for the 2010 MIT Mystery Hunt (30300 Anniversary Edition!)

Given that A. Compared to say, "Indiana Jones", "Donnie Darko" is a pretty tough cinematic nut to crack and B. half the people involved hadn't even seen the film (myself included) and C. The ambition the director/cinematographer had for this despite the 4 minute time limit and having hours and not days to work on it, it's pretty ok. Fun, anyway!

from boingboing irl


EB and me, Topsfield Fair. It's like Johnny Jump Ups for big people!

I am moderately proud of my double backflip presented here, less so of my odd, froglike sumo stance. Still it had a great dreamlike quality when you were doing it...tiring as heck though!
"870 Handy Home Hints" (looks like it might be one of those Home Depot mags) is almost disturbingly clever.
<<peek-a-boo, peek-a-boo, peek-a-boo, i love you>>
Damn it, ANY word containing four letters is a four-letter word.

from bubbles turn around

(1 comment)

You know what the definition of friendship is? You don't have to pay for stuff at your buddy's yardsale.

It really shouldn't be so difficult to remember which one is Ansel Adams and which one is Robert Maplethorpe.
Vista: STOP TRYING TO BE "HELPFUL"--show me the F'IN SIZE OF THE MP3s, not a special mode with "genre" and "rating"- YOU'RE NOT ITUNES
I'm not saying grandma was prudish but she always said her closet used "moth testicles"
Kind of funny how both domestic dogs and housecats are total crap (pun intended but regretted) at covering up their poo by shoveling dirt.