Fasten, fit closely, bind together.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Dismissed Summarily 

I saw King Kong last Friday. It was good and a whole lot of fun, despite what some people said. I could have done without the first hour, but some of the scenes on Skull Island were completely shocking and aweing. For instance Kong takes on not one but over a dozen full-grown T-Rex. He dismisses them summarily:

Over cliffs.

Right hooks to the T-Rex Jaw.

And the grand finale, the Mortal Kombat-style finishing move,

a truly inspired scene where King Kong grabs the final T-Rex by the mouth, pulls its jaw open with his hands,

and rips the jaw apart (predictably I couldn't find any screen shots of this climatic moment). Just to recap the T-Rex, king of all dinosaurs, monster of Jurassic Park, master of the primordial jungle, was trying to close its mouth, like a little kid who doesn't want to eat his peas and carrots.

King Kong isn’t going to stand for that type of insolence, so he pries the T-Rex’s jaw open and gives him a firm reprimanding. Who hasn't wanted to do this to a T-Rex?

I've often felt like doing this to something as formidable as a T-Rex, but my rage usually ends up being directed, deflected towards something more mundane like my cell phone.


Sunday, December 18, 2005

The Future is Now!!! 

New and in neon.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005


I was reading an article about Jay-Z in Rolling Stone.

I enjoyed this excerpt:

Gehry also sent Jay a stack of James Joyce novels after explaining to Jay that Joyce was the first rapper. Gehry explained by email, “When I listen to the tapes of his voice doing Finnegan's Wake it sounds like rap. He's very fast with the Irish accent, it's all slurred together and it's quite interesting. When I heard it I thought he was a rapper and I sent them to Jay Z because I thought he might like it.” Jay says he only reads non-fiction.

Fer shizzle.

I love this type of incongriguity, worlds colliding, words colliding, dissimiliar associations, architects and rappers and novelists and streams of consciousness - oh my. I love that Jay-Z (Jay-Z the rapper? that in my lifetime n*gga? that scheming n*gga on the boat?) is now part owner of the soon to be Brooklyn Nets.

I love that architect Frank Gehry, who designed the Dancing Building in Prague

and who is now designing the Nets' downtown Brooklyn home, gave Jay-Z copies of James Joyce novels. I love that Gehry (in an effort to be what? hip? clever? down with the homies?) thinks that James Joyce's reading Ulysses sounds like some spoken word rap.

This reminds me of a few years back when I taking a fiction writing class at school I wrote about how I bought James Joyce's Ulysses while in high school. I tried to start reading it. I got about 20 pages into it before giving up (I'm pretty sure no one reads all of Ulysses). I did however turn to the last page and read the ending:


I put my arms around him yes and drew him down to me so he could feel my breasts all perfume yes and his heart was going like mad and yes I said yes I will Yes.

Trieste-Zurich-Paris, 1914-1921

Ok fair enough. Later that year I went to Sound Factory on a Friday night.

They had a live performance by this dance/pop singer Amber.

One of the songs she performed was called Yes.

I put my arms around him, yes
And draw him down to me so he can feel my breast
And his heart was going like mad
I mean yes, I said yes, I will yes
Ohhh yes

WTF?!@?!?@ I went back to Ulysses and compared. Uncanny. Bizarre. Strange, but true. Amber's homage to James Joyce? A coincidence? Regardless of how or why the closing of James Joyce's Ulysses became the chorus to Amber's Yes, I felt the fact that I was able to identify this somehow made me unique. That I may have been possibly the only individual in the entire world who had read the last page of Ulysses and bothered to look up the lyrics to a dance song by Amber.

What does this mean?

Monday, December 12, 2005

"The saddest thing in life is wasted talent." 

The irony of this little piece of wisdom that DeNiro's character in A Bronx Tale imparted on his son (played by Lillo Brancato) was not lost on anyone...

The police say that Lillo Brancato Jr., 29, an actor who starred in "A Bronx Tale" with Robert De Niro, attempted to break into a Bronx home with another man, Steven Armento, 48, early Saturday. An off-duty police officer, Daniel Enchautegui, who lived next door, confronted the men and was shot to death. Mr. Brancato and Mr. Armento were wounded in the gunfight.

Yesterday, Mr. Kennedy, a construction manager, stood a few houses from the scene of the crime and recalled some of Mr. Brancato's final words in the movie: "The saddest thing in life is wasted talent, and the choices that you make will shape your life forever."

Attaching a number to IT 

Bush estimates that 30,000 Iraqis have died as a result of the U.S.-led invasion and its aftermath. Something tells me the real number is much higher. But, even using this number of 30,000 - that works out to approximately 900 Iraqi casualties per month since March 2003, or approximately 10 times of the number of people who died in the 9/11 attacks on the WTC.

I know it's been said before... 

...but, it's worth repeating; Sam Cassell is one weird looking dude.

This thought came to me when I saw this picture:

while reading an article on ESPN.com about the recently resurgent L.A. Clippers. Sam looks like a fetal hamster, or some sort of new-born gerbil that hasn't yet opened it's eyes. Part of me wishes this picture was larger to illustrate my point, another part of me is glad it is very very small.

He looks like a combination of E.T., Gollum, and The Great Gazoo:

A Sam Cassell montage...

Ok that's enough of this.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Verily there is something new under the sun... 

Wow. It's a Brave New World.

FUZHOU, China - One of China's newest factories operates here in the basement of an old warehouse. Posters of World of Warcraft and Magic Land hang above a corps of young people glued to their computer screens, pounding away at their keyboards in the latest hustle for money.

The people working at this clandestine locale are "gold farmers." Every day, in 12-hour shifts, they "play" computer games by killing onscreen monsters and winning battles, harvesting artificial gold coins and other virtual goods as rewards that, as it turns out, can be transformed into real cash.


That has spawned the creation of hundreds - perhaps thousands - of online gaming factories here in China. By some estimates, there are well over 100,000 young people working in China as full-time gamers, toiling away in dark Internet cafes, abandoned warehouses, small offices and private homes.

Most of the players here actually make less than a quarter an hour, but they often get room, board and free computer game play in these "virtual sweatshops."

"It's unimaginable how big this is," says Chen Yu, 27, who employs 20 full-time gamers here in Fuzhou. "They say that in some of these popular games, 40 or 50 percent of the players are actually Chinese farmers."

For many online gamers, the point is no longer simply to play. Instead they hunt for the fanciest sword or the most potent charm, or seek a shortcut to the thrill of sparring at the highest level. And all of that is available - for a price.

"What we're seeing here is the emergence of virtual currencies and virtual economies," says Peter Ludlow, a longtime gamer and a professor of philosophy at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. "People are making real money here, so these games are becoming like real economies."

[from NY Times]

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Rolling up the Waistband 

The NBA has recently begun enforcing a 1-inch shorts rule, i.e., no player's shorts can be longer than 1-inch above the knee.

A.I. would be fined for this.

Six players, including the New York Knicks' Stephon Marbury and Nate Robinson, have been fined $10,000 apiece for wearing shorts that exceed the allowable length. I was watching a NYK game on Sunday (for only about 2 minutes, before it became unwatchable) and I noticed that Starbury's shorts did look noticeably more John Stockton-esque.

The commissioner’s office is standing behind the strict enforcement of this rule.

"That's why I've got some players rolling up their waistbands, to make themselves legal," said Detroit Pistons president Joe Dumars. "We were just warned about it. But I don't think it looks very good when guys are playing with their waistbands turned inside-out."

Rolling up the wasteband, a trick that anyone who went to a Catholic school is very familiar with. In the elementary and high schools I went to, there was a strict dress code for girls; they couldn't wear skirts higher than one-inch of above the knee (or something like that, it might have even been more like 3 inches below the knee, something prude and nun-like). The girls would have their skirts hemmed to the legal length, but would then roll up their wastebands to wuthering heights while walking down the halls.

So catholic school girls would roll up their skirts and get in trouble. Now NBAers are rolling up their shorts to stay out of trouble… I guess that makes perfect sense. All is right in the world (outside of the Mid East Region).

The Knicks’ City Dancers have already taken the cue about the short short thing.

Look at that compliance!!!

Monday, December 05, 2005

If the Jets have the opportunity to draft Reggie Bush... 

Let's hope they make the right decision.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

A Democracy flourishing so well... 

...that the US Government is paying to plant favorable articles in Iraqi newspapers:

Titled "The Sands Are Blowing Toward a Democratic Iraq," an article written this week for publication in the Iraqi press was scornful of outsiders' pessimism about the country's future.

"Western press and frequently those self-styled 'objective' observers of Iraq are often critics of how we, the people of Iraq, are proceeding down the path in determining what is best for our nation," the article began. Quoting the Prophet Muhammad, it pleaded for unity and nonviolence.

But far from being the heartfelt opinion of an Iraqi writer, as its language implied, the article was prepared by the United States military as part of a multimillion-dollar covert campaign to plant paid propaganda in the Iraqi news media and pay friendly Iraqi journalists monthly stipends, military contractors and officials said.

But who am I to talk? I would write pro-American military occupation Blogger propoganda posts if the Pentagon offered to pay me a monthly stipend.

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