Friday, February 27, 2004

Wednesday, February 25, 2004

The World Was Yours! What Happened??? by Demonac
Abused your power byStarting the Megalympics (drugs, cybernetics, genetic modifications... ANYTHING GOES!)
Untilthe N.R.A.
...Reminded the populace about those pesky term limits.
And adding insult to injuryYou no longer have creative control of your cameo on South Park... this is not good.
But now, after all that, you aremaking a meagre living as a political satirist.
(How did you conquer?) Try "The World Is MINE!" MEME to find out!
Created with quill18's MemeGen 2.0!

Not a bad bit of prognostication. I've thought many time of starting an Unlimited Class of various sports, as I think it would be very interesting to see the absolute top performance possible, given every possible advantage. Kasparov and co. Vs. Ten networked Deep Fritz 3Ds! no rules battlebots! Steroidal Football(yeah, like it isn't already).

it would be interesting. the deaths would probably mount pretty quickly, but they did sign release forms. I mean, I can't be held responsible for what they do. Also, I imagine the police would enjoy arresting people who abused illegal methods to perfomance enhance within the United States quite a bit. So be aware, it's not without problems.
a good bit of food advice from BillK on extropians-chat:

On Tue Feb 24, 2004 06:50 pm Johnius wrote:
> In general, such foods are great, but as noted, individuals might have
> special intolerances with some of these foods. Perhaps
> adequate substitutes are listed in the book for all of them.

Since I posted the original list, I've done some more searching and
found more data plus some examples of the alternatives quoted from the

As you mentioned, some individuals are lactose intolerant, just as some
are allergic to peanuts, some are allergic to tomatoes and apparently
some people are allergic to soy.
But this list is not one of those strict diets that must be followed
like a religion. You will get the benefits of eating these foods even if
you manage to squeeze some rubbish in as well. ;)

· Beans –
Also try: green beans, sugar snap peas, green peas, chickpeas
What they've got: low-fat protein, fiber, B vitamins, iron, folate,
potassium, magnesium

· Blueberries –
Also try: cranberries, raspberries, strawberries, cherries, currants,
purple grapes
What they've got: fiber, folate, vitamins C and E, potassium, magnesium,
iron, riboflavin, niacin, phytoestrogen, few calories.

· Broccoli –
Also try: Brussels sprouts, cabbage (red and green), cauliflower, bok
choy, kale
What it's got: folate, fiber, calcium, vitamins C and K, beta-carotene

· Oats –
Also try: wheat germ, brown rice, barley, wheat, buckwheat, rye, millet,
What they've got: high fiber, few calories, protein, magnesium,
potassium, zinc, copper, selenium, thiamine

· Oranges –
Also try: lemons, grapefruit, kumquats, tangerines, limes
What they've got: vitamin C, fiber, folate, potassium, pectin

· Pumpkin –
Also try: carrots, butternut squash, sweet potatoes, orange bell peppers
What it's got: alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, high fiber, few calories,
vitamins C and E, potassium, magnesium

· Wild Salmon -
Also try: Alaskan halibut, canned albacore tuna, sardine, herring,
trout, sea bass, clams
What it's got: omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins B and D, selenium,
potassium, protein

· Soy –
Also try: tofu, soymilk, soy nuts, edamame, miso
What it's got: omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin E, potassium, folate,
magnesium, selenium

· Spinach –
Also try: other dark leafy greens, kale, collards, Swiss chard, bok
choy, romaine lettuce, mustard and turnip greens or orange bell peppers.
What it's got: beta-carotene, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins C and E,
thiamine, iron, calcium, magnesium, zinc

· Tea – Green or black:
What it's got: flavonoids, fluoride, no calories

· Tomatoes –
Lycopene, the red pigment in tomatoes, is also found in pink
grapefruit, watermelon, persimmons and some types of papaya.
What they've got: lycopene, few calories, alpha- and beta-carotene,
vitamin C, potassium, chromium, fiber

· Turkey –
Also try: skinless chicken breast
What it's got: low-fat protein, niacin, vitamins B6 and B12, iron,
selenium, zinc

· Walnuts –
Also try: almonds, pistachios, sesame seeds, peanuts, pumpkin and
sunflower seeds, macadamia nuts, pecans, hazelnuts, cashews
What they've got: omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins E and B6, magnesium,
protein, fiber, potassium

· Yogurt –
Also try: kefir
What it's got: live active cultures, calcium, vitamins B2 and B12,
potassium, magnesium, zinc

The book also insists that exercise is necessary for good health.
But simply eating right won't guarantee good health and longevity, he
says. You have to exercise, too. According to the book's "lifestyle
pyramid," the linchpin of good health includes 30 to 60 minutes a day of
aerobic exercise and weight training two to three times a week.


Tuesday, February 24, 2004 Home

after work, I try to spend some time thinking. This is an excellent site with decent commentary on a large library of problems and games. Very challenging.

This looks like a busy week for me. We'll see how it goes.

Monday, February 23, 2004

Peter comes back tommorro, I'll be picking him up round 1. It's been nice having this sort of low pressure time to get caught up. Although it has been a lot of work, I think that once peter gets back and we get done with the current planning, pressure and practice will go up.

That's good. I have a tendency to get lost in theory, if I indulge it too much. Details are where the rubber meets the road.

I'm finally starting to see this as a permanent change, as opposed to a place I'm visiting. It's not a huge change, but it does mean my sleep and activities take a slightly different character. I have to start relying on long term willpower to do things, as opposed to feeling the demands of the moment. More positively, it means my sleep improves some.

The present turns into the past with great reluctance.

Sunday, February 22, 2004

okay, Micheal was right. The new Britney Spears "Toxic" is actually pretty good. Reminds me a bit of Pink, wonder if they're sharing producers now. The video is pretty visually interesting too, if panderiffic.

I had a day off today, but I ended up doing a decent amount.

You may have guessed, I broke down and reinstalled winamp and some p2p. farewell my lost productivity.....
The Official Gillian Anderson Website - Messages from Gillian

whoa. Gillian Anderson has a blog, and it's even updated more than once a month sometimes.

.. must control... rising... fanboyism....

Saturday, February 21, 2004

outlawpoet daily

It's amusing, I sort of started my blog with the dual reasons of informing, and giving myself a pressure release, so I don't have to write as much down. And as wordy and insane as I get on here sometimes, the sad part it, it's working. Much of what is just two pages or so of text would have been much longer in a personal context. So despite the investment, this blog is actually saving me time.

That is really sad, when I think about it too much, that I was spending that much time on writing projects privately. Most of which were never published. Instant publishing wins again.

I should ask some of the writers amongst my friends if blogging affects how much they write. I suppose not many people find themselves in the position of managing how much they indulge their creativity. More evidence of maladjusted behavior.

Another positive thing is that I don't generally show my private projects to anyone else, ever. This blog is available to anyone who wants to look. It's lower quality, and not as detailed, but if genius unexpressed isn't much worth it, in general terms.
The nihilism I feel waiting outside for me, is often more insidious than it might seem. Sometimes it seems like so much happens that insists that I'd be best to abandon what I hold to be important. Sometimes everything seems to devalue and shrink before some harsh light. On valentines day I wrote about the first time I realized that love isn't ever certain, or even ever really lasting. It almost destroyed me because I had found so much joy and so much love within myself that I never had before. The erosion of a bastion I had built within my life left me feeling that nothing could ever be really safe. And I would lose all I cared about. Who could keep caring without some safe place where their feelings were always returned? Without some person to love them when they don't have any emotion of their own, much less to give? But nihilism didn't claim me there. I found value in wandering, without a safe fastness to secure myself. I learned that however hard, you can survive alone long enough to hide your heart in semi-sure places. To go forth in a landscape of only half-trusted places to rest and use.

I miss thinking that there could be safe places. But I am happy. And I have no safe place. That is probably better. In a strange way, the more and worse the battles I wage to keep my caring and direction, the less vulnerable I become. I have less to lose, less places unexamined.

But there are scars. Some I am proud of, and some I leave unannounced, under clothing or camoflage. And they remain different from ever having such weakness, of course. They tug at me through memory or recirculation. I see churches and I remember God. I see schools and I remember my School. I see couples who think they'll never lose the trust and passion and partnership, and I remember Love.

There are uncapitalized versions of each that I can find joy in. And I try. (or will try). But the naive trust and expectation that they will fill and remain has gone. I am a better person for it.
there is a more honest, if more depressing way to express it, which is, insofar as I am aware, unique. I invented it when asked about some things I didn't like. People asked me what might happen in the future about them, and I said there were only two real possibilities. I'll be dead, or it will be different.
There is something about rain that brings up a vicious streak in me. I was walking along, and noted a struggling car. I reflected that it really only takes a tiny nudge to completely derail many things in our everyday lives. No one thinks about this, but a tiny push on the back wheel of a bike could be fatal, fifteen pounds of pressure through a fingertip can break the skin via fingernail. Any object heaved at low relative velocities onto oncoming traffic could spiderweb windshields. Our environment is held together by fragile strings of vulnerabilities that no one ever tests.

It's perhaps fortunate the psychopaths are so bad at planning. It is only the high functioning individuals with social disorders like me that are real threats. Thankfully(and predictably) I am far too attached to my environment to threaten it much. The phenotypes that are likely to do so probably died out very early. Sometimes, though, it all hangs by such a fragile thread.

It would be so easy sometimes, to put down my plans, put down my attachments, and succumb to the nihilism that waits outside the borders of values and feelings. Science is a two edged tool, and it saws at your shiny ideals as it clears away the superstitions and fears. And you can't decide that your values are inviolate, not and hope to remain within science. Accepting a weaker form, a science that says nothing about the things you care about, isn't just less rational, or a compromise. It's nothing.

Understanding requires that you accept new information. No matter where it lands. I have learned three times now, that I was truly and fully wrong about the world. And each time I have felt a terrible draining loss of purpose and hope. Each time I have seen my previous actions in the light of new eyes, and seen how useless, misguided, or counter-productive they were. It's crushing. Every time, some tiny part of my mind that still seeks for truth, while I'm mourning the loss of my last life, says, "good." It's good that I realized. Good that I can change. It hurts, but I would rather be hurt by the real world, than go unknowing into the dark night, trusting maps I'd drawn to mislead myself, to keep things the same.

Some things always survive. I'm not my body, or my mind, or my memories. I'm not my values, or my beliefs or even my loves. All of these things have passed on in part or whole. But I am still here. I am the direction of my life. I am what acts like I do. I am the center of the system that becomes more and more like I have always wanted to be. And while that may go in directions my past selves may not have seen, it is driven by a core that remains much the same. I remember the first time I woke up from a dream, and cried because it wasn't so. I don't remember the dream, I remember the moment. I remember how it moved me from what I used to be, to what I am. That difference is where my identity can be said to reside.

Many people, impressed by materialistic explanations of a deterministic universe, complain that it leaves no place for choice or free will if we are predictable. I don't understand this objection. I am my history, and I will be my future. How could I act any differently? Perhaps if I were outside myself, or could see all that was and will be, I would seem a small sad wind-up toy. But I can't, and I'm not. I'm the highest of the highest, a brilliant example of a brilliant species, reaching up for the first time from the muck and the dirt and the rage.

I've been telling people for years that I plan to save the world. And by hook or crook, I will. It's not a specific injunction, nor a clear declaration of one plan. I won't allow the world to remain as it is. There are too many things I don't like. That's it. It's a simple decision really, best expressed by Thomas Harris in "Hannibal" through the excellent Clarice Starling:

"The world will not be this way. Not within the reach of my arm."

I couldn't tell you how I'll end up. And I couldn't say what kind of world it will be when I am satisfied. But I trust in the direction of my life. I will trust that when a Justin Corwin stands, and says he's done, he can look back, and draw a line that connects his opinion to mine. I am sure that I can sort out the details as they come up. the only real problem is determining what direction to face in, and deciding what kind of person I am. Or will be.

Friday, February 20, 2004


didn't make it down to the beach today, but plan to do so tomorro. The sun is a new friend of mine that I am determined to get to know better.

Strange things are a happening in other places though. My friend Noel nearly gives me cardiac trouble when he announces his engagement to one Amanda Stamp. They of course live in Cincinnati, where he is attending the UC DAAP program.

My friends in Salt Lake City seemingly decided that once I was gone it was safe to have interesting things happen, with Tim reappearing in Game, Liz having scholarly issues, and her first migraines, and Elizabeth moving out, Jer bein clever, and Loren throwing out his virtual and actual stuff. (bring back posertechnique!). My brother independently invented perpetual motion, and who knows what else.

I am concentrating on building high-quality sand castles and wave breaking walls. When I'm not working. I plan on achieving fame and fortune through sand-crafting and engineering excellence.

Wednesday, February 18, 2004

didn't get nearly enough done. still a backlog of emails and such to respond to. If you have written me in the last few days, do not despair, I will reply.

I haven't been as prompt nor as focused as I'd like. Time to start scheduling and setting microtasks for myself again. gah.
Penny Arcade!

in a perfect world...

Tuesday, February 17, 2004

Music Today while Writing:

Philip Glass

Queen: Jazz

esp: "Jealousy","Bicycle Race"


You say black I say white
You say bark I say bite
You say shark I say hey man
Jaws was never my scene
And I don't like Star Wars
You say Rolls I say Royce
You say God give me a choice
You say Lord I say Christ
I don't believe in Peter Pan
Frankenstein or Superman
All I wanna do is

Bicycle bicycle bicycle
I want to ride my bicycle bicycle bicycle
I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride my bike
I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride my
Bicycle races are coming your way
So forget all your duties oh yeah!
Fat bottomed girls
They'll be riding today
So look out for those beauties oh yeah
On your marks get set go
Bicycle bicycle bicycle
I want to ride my bicycle

You say coke I say caine
You say John I say Wayne
Hot dog I say cool it man
I don't wanna be the President of America
You say smile I say cheese
Cartier, I say please
Income tax, I say Jeez
I don't wanna be a candidate for
Vietnam or Watergate
Cos all I wanna do is:

Bicycle bicycle bicycle
I want to ride my bicycle bicycle bicycle
I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride my bike
I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride it where I like
Been out of the house for the last few days, got in, will be writing a great deal, I have to do some work reports, and finish the book introduction first draft.

I'll also be crafting emails and such.

another keyboard day, yay!

Saturday, February 14, 2004

oh, hm, another unanticipated response. This is not a cry for help of any kind. If you'll read closely, most of this is comfortably in the past, and I've at least begun to deal with it, please do not call me expecting me to be contemplating suicide or in tears. It's a day for remembering why you are single, after all.
to clarify given one question; no, it wasn't all about Carrie. I was confronted not only with the horrifying specter that some day I would lose her, but with the concept that someday I would lose everything I cared about, because no matter what, if there is a chance, eventually it will happen, given a long enough timescale. Since then I've determined that all that's neccesary for peace of mind is to reduce the incidence level below the chance of the end of my life by enough to ensure that i'll never percieve it, because by the time it happens, I'll be dead. Which is no less morbid, but subjectively less damning.
Valentines Day.

This is no fun, no fun at all. Those who know me, know that I've 'suffered' from a lifelong androgen overdose. I'm unsure where it ends and my attention deficit begins, but they have very different genesis and eventual results. I have very strong metabolitic drivers, even when I do nothing for months. I have strong emotions(which I have fought to master all my life). I am unceasingly kinesthetic and love doing physical things, in stark contrast to my personality, which is mostly intellectual and contemplative. I am too fond of conflict, my drives and talents let me excel at things that could only be used to hurt people, and to my regret, I have been in too many fights in my life, and too many of them pointless. I try to hide that aspect of myself, shamefully. I can't think of too many good friends that I've let see myself like that. I can't sit still when I'm incompletely captivated by something. Everyone I know has seen me pace watching a movie or tv show.

I am deeply, almost constantly, sexually aware. This has caused it's share of problems. But I like to think that I both indulge and control this aspect of myself better now. But this intersects with something else a few people know. I am romantic, and deeply flawed in view of myself and people I am lucky enough to know romantically. I am deeply and bitterly lonely. I have tried, with varying success to find someone who engages me on as many levels as possible. Who makes me feel like everything within me has a partner.

Yesterday, I got to see my ex-girlfriend Carrie. She lives here in LA, and two weeks after I moved here, I got to see her for about two hours. I don't have great expectations of seeing her very often. She has her own life here, and a boyfriend named Tom, whom I've never met, and likely never will. He's said he doesn't want to meet me. This will have a great effect on Carrie, she cares about him, and I'm operating on memories of attachment. But it's not surprising. She broke up with me, after all. She must have had her reasons.

Carrie was probably the person that came the closest to making me feel like I wasn't alone in real life(as opposed to dreams or imagination, both of which I've led very successful romances in, thank you very much). For some reason she was interested in almost everything I was, even if she hadn't encountered it before. She was strong, perhaps as strong as me, emotionally; and physically she was nearly perfect, fast, aggressive, strong, sexually attractive to me beyond all girls. She is in raw intelligence, among the smarter friends i've been privileged to have. But her knowledge is only defined by what has impacted her personally, she lacked the driving, obssessive curiosity and attention to detail that really encyclopedic knowledge requires. She learned everything very fast. And very well. I don't think there is a single day I have known her that she hasn't impressed or attracted me more; in kindness, physically, or with her decisions.

About a year ago I realized that our relationship was going to end, and I was going to lose her. I can honestly say, that despite all my paranoia, and intelligence and low worse if wiser thoughts, that it had never occurred to me before. But any probability, stretched to long enough time-scale is a certainty. Anything possible will happen, given a long enough wait. And something had come up that could end our relationship. She was committed to moving to go to USC. It wasn't that I thought that would destroy us, but that it had a chance to. I thought I could fix that particular problem. to get past it. But that there was a chance, meant that it would happen, certainly, someday.

It was the closest I have ever come to real suicide. Not desperate attention-seeking, or flailing to escape, but deliberate, aiming to die to stop my life now. I walked to a ten story car park, and sat and thought of ways to ensure that I would hit the asphalt head-first. I must have stayed up there, leaning against the wind, and avoiding the eyes of the drivers parking and leaving, for at least an hour. I was saved by no decision of mine. My limbic system kicked in, and increased my fear and desire to live on until I had to back down. It has been a secret shame of mine that I'm alive today not because I chose to be, but because, shaking and full of hormones and adrenaline, I couldn't force my body to do it.

I walked to the University computer lab, and asked the smartest person I knew for help. He appealed to the rationalist in me, and showed that she was only a portion of a larger set of goals that I had. that some portion of me would survive, and grow and eventually be larger and better(if not unscarred) than I was now. I didn't tell him about my desire to end my life. It would have complicated things. It was after that I decided not to. Perhaps if he had been there up on the car park, I would have felt more like it was a part of me, rather than being reduced to a tiny part of this shaking, sniffling animal that didn't want to die.

I left, and I went and walked for a long time. And then I came home, and I lay down next to her, and touched her with trembling fingers and cried, facing away so I wouldn't wake her. Having faced the larger crisis of eventual loss of her, and by extension, everything I held dear, I went to work on the local crisis. I tried, for the next few months to ensure that I wouldn't lose her at that time. I failed miserably, of course, doing exactly the wrong thing. But that's a subject for another day.

Strangely, despite all this, when she finally did break up with me, I was taken completely by surprise, and spent the next few months in a black hole, that I still can't fully recall. It's only relatively recently that I began to try to tear myself from rethinking and planning and desperate attempts to distract myself. I even started to look at other girls as something other than just people or lust objects. And most recently, I tried to go on dates with a very nice girl named Crystal, whom I am probably hurting by writing all this. It is only the oddest of chances that led me to be here now in LA. Maybe if I had the chance to give Crystal a chance, she could have been for me, a place of safety and comfort and companionship. But I don't think I'll know now. She's now very far away. It is a note of mystery and regret in an otherwise good decision.

It's been a year since I realized, and six months or so since she dumped me. And I am more or less reconciled. On odd nights I dream, and wake up sad, and when I see her I always have wonderful times until it's time to say goodbye, which is always like being dumped again. I have gotten re-acquainted with jealousy. I never worried during our relationship, now, beyond my control, it's a rising tide of directed anger and suspicion. It would be a close tie which was more painful, the fact she doesn't want me, or the fact that she's so happy without me. I at least have the decency to be shattered and quiet and lonely, most of the time. But she broke up with me, so I guess it's to be expected.

It's valentines day, as everyone keeps reminding me, and emails and spam and advertisements proclaim. I guess it's a decent day to examine all this. And I accept it. Since I can't change anything, I can only be happy about what I've gotten. I think I've done better than most people. My sadness isn't relative to them, though, it's relative to my dreams. So in some way, I'll always be sad. But, also in some ways, so long as I keep doing what I want to, I'll always be happy.

Happy Valentines Day, don't let anyone take your loves away from you, no matter how far-fetched or illconsidered. It's what makes you who you are. And try to find a way to be happy.

Friday, February 13, 2004

Rage Against the Machine, Take the Power Back
Rage Against the Machine
In the right light, study becomes insight
But the system that dissed us
Teaches us to read and write

So-called facts are fraud
They want us to allege and pledge
And bow down to their God
Lost the culture, the culture lost
Spun our minds and through time
Ignorance has taken over
Yo, We gotta take the power back
Bam, Here's the plan
Mother fuck Uncle Sam
Step back, I know who I am
Raise up your ear, I'll drop the style and clear
It's the beast and lyrics they fear
The rage is relentless
We need a movement with a quickness
You are the witness of change
And to counteract
We gotta take the power back

We gotta take the power back
We gotta take the power back

The present curriculum
I put my fist in 'em
Eurocentric every last one of 'em
See right through the red, white and blue disguise
With lecture, I puncture the structure of lies
Installed in our minds and attempting
To hold us back
We've got to take it back
holes in our spirits causin' tears and fears
One-sided stories for years and years and years
I'm inferior? Who's inferior?
Yea, we needa check the interior
Of the system who cares about only one culture
And that is why
We gotta take the power back


The teacher stands in front of the class
But the lesson plan he can't recall
The student's eyes don't percieve the lies
Mounted on every fucking wall
His composure is well kept
I guess he fears playing the fool
Complacent students sit, and listen
to the bullshit that he learned in school

Europe ain't my rope to swing on
Can't learn a thing from it
Yet we hang from it
Gotta get it, gotta get it together then
Like the mother fuckin Minutemen
To expose and close the doors on those who try
To strangle and mangle the truth
'Cause the circle of hatred continues unless we react
We gotta take the power back


No more lies
Anger is a gift.

Thursday, February 12, 2004

As the Apple Turns: Bringing New Meaning To The Phrase "Psychotic Episodes."

When life hands you lemons, grind them against the bloody bones of your enemies to make lemonade.

Wednesday, February 11, 2004

Buddhabrot | Gallery of Computation

too interesting
diesel sweeties: pixelated robot romance web comic

I am ten ninjas.

I kinda miss winter. And snow and such.
Mac Plus Web Server

this frightens me. I wonder if someone will slashdot this someday, and destroy this computer.

I've actually worked on an original macintosh, and I must say, it's not a bad lil box. I used Macs at school while growing up, of course, and always preferred them to the Win 3.x and later 95 alternatives.

But using a MacPlus as a modern webserver? that's just.. mad. And with nice big color pictures and such? insanity.

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

The Official Rock Paper Scissors Strategy Guide

Because everything can be perfected, no matter how stupid.

Competition is really about growing, and becoming a stronger, better person through challenge. But I get the feeling some people just lower the bar until they get into a competitive niche so impossibly sub-divided that they're virtually guaranteed dominance by being the only people who care enough about it.

Do you get the feeling someone in that big army might have said:

"Ha! Let the dark armies of Saruman come! It would take an entire brigade of giant mutant four-tusked elephants to conquer our... Well, son of a bitch!"

-stolen from TopFive
The Top 5 List -- Valentine's Cards #8

ha. bad poetry hurts the soul. but valentines day is more poisonous still.


orkut - home

not just another social networking app! wait, no, it is. But it's in affiliation with google, and it'll likely last longer than any others. Let me know if you want to be invited to the party.

some interesting group stuff, and it's only in beta, so perhaps some more interesting applications and communicatory channels will show up. We'll see. Better than friendster and tribe, by a hair.

Monday, February 09, 2004

SCI FICTION: Periodic Table

I can't recommend this site enough. The writing is varied, and interesting. And you can digest it in short bites.

I check back, occasionally, to read new elements, and review ones i've already loved.

My favorites are Iridium, Radium, Hafnium, Technetium, and Chlorine.
but I have a hard time choosing.

Sunday, February 08, 2004

Making Light

The author of "Making Book", a brilliant brilliant thing in it's second edition that any author should read.

Didn't realize she had a blog. Quite excellent.

Writing is a cold unfeeling thing. The words don't change, no matter how much you care about them. In reducing communication to words, you must trust in your ability to mash implications down to managable size. And trust that you've done it well enough for another person to reconstruct your attempt. Without help.

This would be a daunting enough task if you didn't realize that you're also being judged against the greatest writers that the reader has ever read. Global talents, who spent their lives entire, honing. This isn't like being an engaging speaker, where your competition is at best, a few hundred people. The average literati has read prose by possibly thousands of writers, who were likely rammed through massively brutal selection processes.

Writing is intensely personal, in that there is no social process that can allow you to learn it, save perhaps for some abortive, transients, like chatting and social webpages, where you must slice your wit to single lines and paragraphs, an editing habit that can help your brevity and wit, but does nothing for pacing, cohesion, or tone. Writing has a terribly slow feedback system, with little detail, and less honesty. You have to learn by falling out of love with your own creations, and by the few rare beautiful people who can tell you what is so broken about what you're trying to say.

Editors are angels, with their cutting, dismissive ways. They're doing you a favor, don't you see!? They have stopped lying, because they can't lie about writing anymore. It's their job. Bless the editor who rejects you, and takes the time to say something about it. Anything.

You need it, your writing is awful.
you know that feeling, when you've been an integral part of something, and then suddenly you're shunted to the side by an event, while once trivial or merely interesting, is now much more important than you are?

that's a bad feeling.

Saturday, February 07, 2004

goats: strip from September / 30 / 2001

sooner or later, all truly interesting games converge into calvinball.

Friday, February 06, 2004

Miami New Times | | News : Kulchur Myth Makers,Good thing Che Guevara died young,

Che Guevara is going to be pretty big soon, with movies and such coming out glorifying his short life as a 'professional revolutionary'. I hope that at least some of them make clear his violence, his straighforward goals of communism, fraternity, and insurgency. Che isn't a rebel, he was a man who believed in a political cause enough to kill for it. Those are two very different things.

I think that Che was brilliant, his handbook on guerrila action is still applicable and utilized. Nearly as cogent as Mao's. But his brilliance, effectiveness, and idealism hardly polish away his leadership of military police in cuba, his rage and hatred of US imperialism. It will be interesting to see how they blunt these things. It's one thing to print him on a tshirt, or dress up like him on an album cover, it's quite another to get someone to play him onscreen. Although I do think Benecio del Toro is an inspired choice, given the right script.

turn up some Rage today, and ponder your own thoughts on this professional revolutionary that is being turned into an advertising tool.
BBC NEWS | Health | Pain from a woman will hurt less

this just goes to show you something.

Thursday, February 05, 2004

Hidalgo - from Myth to Movie

sadly, it appears that the upcoming movie Hidalgo is even more historically inaccurate than the usual disney revisionism.

Sadly, it enjoys some popular support from sloppy writers and secondary sources.

I did a bit of research myself, and some of the particulars seem very well supported. There is no other evidence for the race described as 'the ocean of fire' ever having been run in Yemen, and the former Sultan of Yemen is actually quoted in an upcoming book as saying such a race never existed, and never would have been supported culturally in the first place.

Cody's Wild West Show also has no record of Frank Hopkins employment. No record of any his performances exist as first hand sources.

It seems Frank Hopkin's claims of stardom are much the same as Frank Dux's more recent claims of far off conquest. The problem being that now we can simply ask the people who live there if such events actually occured. (Frank Dux's claims of foreign triumph are immortalized in the movie Bloodsport, which largely replicates unexamined his own publicity. No record of a "Kumite" like the one he describes exists, and no external sources can be referenced.)

it still looks like a good movie though. I hope that Disney stops promoting it as based on a true story.

Wednesday, February 04, 2004


You should already be reading Ronald Bailey anyway. But for those who don't. Do.
The Hunger Site : Give Food for Free to Hungry People in the World

still a good cause. still need to do it every day. is under construction.

noel finds all the cool stuff.
Guardian Unlimited | Life | 'I'm sorry, has your brain broken?'


he gets my vote for temporary king of the world for a day.

"Eliezer": Honest speaker of the day award.

Welcome to The Paris Bistro

I just got my newsletter from the Paris Bistro, prompting me to unsubscribe. It made me rather sad. I only visited the bistro three times, but was very impressed and hoped to visit more often. I constantly kick myself that I didn't monitor it more closely when I lived in such proximity. They often have deals and specials that bring it into very reasonable price ranges. As well as free wine courses I should have taken advantage of. Folk still in SLC, take note!
Apple - Trailers - Dust To Glory

Anyone who knows about the Baja 1000 knows it's grueling, and good tests of mettle and engineering. But will it make good cinema? Here's hoping. Extreme racing at it's best and purest.

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

Questia - The Online Library of Books and Journals

Finally an online source for all those books you've had to go to the library for. Includes a decent selection of journals and such as well.

It really looks quite impressive, and isn't that bad of a price considering how many journals and current books you get. The tools are also very impressive, have a look through their demo, they have workspacing, and research enabling tools that are better than any other online resource I've seen.

I'm going to see if I can use Questia without subscribing as a good deal of it's searching capability could prove useful, and abstracts and minor amounts of texts are sometimes all I need. But I may end up taking the plunge, as this service seems really too cool. We'll see, bat-fans.
More work!

I don't remember the last time I thought of reading as intimidating or challenging, but here it is. As part of my new job, I just received four books to read. by the end of tommorro, hopefully. The expectation is to skim and minorly read, of course, but I'd feel less than perfectly prepared by that.

We'll see how it goes. There is a great deal of books, background information, and documentation I have to read here, and while reading quickly and retaining information well is one of my specialties, I expect I'll hit my limits eventually.

Being back on windows is interesting. I'm rediscovering all the little joys(having to find third party software to recapitulate functionality) and the neccesary apps(cygwin, openoffice, winRAR, etc) and benefits(incredibly easy installations, first or second-party software implementations of everything). There are downsides(the thrice damned Registry, and general hostility towards the user), and dissapointments(you mean they don't make tux racer for windows?!) but it's all part of the process, I guess.

I could have tried dual-booting, or running VMware, or Bochs, but that just seems perverse. I can get along in Windows pretty well, with many of the same applications, given some adjustments. If I had a high performance Macintosh, or Sparc hardware or something, I might consider splitting OSes, but I can prettify the desktop, and ignore the differences much simpler than dealing with emulation slowdowns.

and I rather like cygwin, it's charming, in a hacklike way. It reminds me of my first experiences with linux, where it's all very arcane and commandline, and getting anything to work was a matter of brute force and complete exploration of all possibilities.

Sunday, February 01, 2004

Remind me to thank the inventor of pepto-bismol pills if/when I meet him. I was suddenly nauseous tonight, with body aches, and quite intense stomach pains, in addition to the headache I already mentioned below.

A little bit of taking it, some micro-napping, and two doses of pepto-bismol pills, and I'm well enough to type, the headache seems to be leaving, and while I remain affected by a little tingling, and delicate nature, I'm confident tonight will end in sleep without vomit.

I speculate that this was brought on by lack of sleep, enthusiastic eating of the last two days, and the novel local microbes and bacteria. I imagine I'll be better fairly quickly. But it caught me much by surprise.

I'm struck yet again by how spotty, unpredictable and relatively powerless personal medicine remains. I'm sure a doctor of some kind could have given me a more detailed analysis and perhaps some strategies to help reduce it fairly quickly, but my only recourse is to hit it with pain relievers, diet, water, teas, bed rest, and a few specialized medications like pepto-bismol. This is true for most personal health questions. Up to a certain 'seriousness' bound, you're expected to just grit your teeth and take bodily disorders and diseases. Then after that bound is exceeded, you can go to a doctor and test for 'major' syndromes.

Arg, even more egregiously, it's stalemated me in terms of making useful work or contributions tonight. Maybe, I can consider starting some work now, shaky as I still am.

mm, still enthusiastic and happy, despite my body's best efforts otherwise. welcome to all sides of LA, I guess, including microscopic.
ah, the sea.

I walked today down the seashore, and remembered why I love sun, surf and sea air so much. I'm not that far from muscle beach, so you may see me there occasionally.

full of challenge, full of fun. I have had a good two days so far. I missed the superbowl commercials, but I imagine the really good ones will be findable on the internet.

ugh, too much change, not enough sleep, I'm going to bed early tonight.