Agenda 21 In Austin - Save the Red River District

Seen originally off a friend's site.



If you love hanging out on Red River as much as I do, you would be sickened by the plans they (the big real estate developers and NGO's) have.....

This is from my buddy John who runs Elysium on Red River..... This is SERIOUSLY IMPORTANT!!! WAKE UP!!!!


"This is the survey for the City of Austin about the plan for Red River in 2012. This is the LAST CHANCE for public comment. All surveys must be in by May 31st. Please suffer through and fill out the survey, and if you know anyone else who enjoys any bars/bands on Red River, please send it to them as well.

The first part covers your interest in the Red River/Waller Creek area, then your choice of what should be done in different areas along Waller Creek/Red River, then lastly the comment section.

Please fill out the survey.


John Wickham
President Red River District

PS Below is a summary of what I said. Please DO NOT say the exact same thing.

I am just including this to let you know my opinions:"

"The current live music venues and clubs transformed the area from a crime-ridden area to something desirable. The existing businesses should be rewarded by having a part in this new vision. Unfortunately, many of those venues do not own their own buildings and will get shortchanged in this renewal; even though those venues made the area attractive for development in the first place.

The dance clubs, Live Music Venues, and bars that are on Red River should be respected and incorporated into the larger plan.

The only true Live Music District of Austin left is Red River. Please do not ruin the last bastion of Live Music that Austin has. Red Eyed Fly, Beerland, Elysium, Room 710, and Headhunters have been there for almost 7 years changing the area themselves, please do not sell them out to developers. Not to mention all the new venues that opened like Sidebar, Creekside Lounge, Red 7, Beauty Bar and Mohawk... To say nothing of long-existing venues like Emo's, Stubb's and Club DeVille.

For Chip


Indiana Jones Review - Spoilers

I'm going to spoil this for you. Don't go see it.

I'm serious. If you love Indiana Jones movies, just forget this was made. Ignore the commercials, walk away from friends who talk about it. Go see Iron Man, wait for Dark Knight. Just pretend in your heart that this was never made.

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull starts off in 1957 with an army convoy being teased by a joyriding hotrod full of loose girls and testosterone addled boys. The obvious nod to American Graffiti convinces the lead car to race and after, seriously, five minutes of racing, they are no farther in front of the convoy. A few CGI groundhogs later, the convoy pulls off into Area 51 where the guards say they aren't allowed in. The Russians in disguise mow down the guards, head to a hanger (which has all the wrong points of fact about it) and dump Indy and his voice dub along with a really poorly acted Aussie friend in front of a PsyOps Ukranian (Blanchett). They plod and poke through some heinous un-Indiana dialog until they find what they need and then Indy can escape.

By the way, it IS the same hanger the Ark is in and yes that's the Ark in that box, in case you missed the completely obvious throw back moments. More to come.

He makes his way to a rocket sled where he fights the guy from Rocky 4, they trip the controls (as per usual) and the rocket sled simultaneously fries half the Russians and launches Indy and his sparring partner into the night air. It was really only about noon when they went into the hangar, apparently all this took 8 hours.

Indy bumbles his way to an A-Bomb test site where he has the presence of mind to shove himself into a lead-lined fridge to escape the blast unharmed. The fridge is launched to a safe distance (the only piece of mock furniture to do so) and the only ramification to his incident is having a comical rub down by the radiation/car wash guys back at HQ where Janitor from Scrubs plays the second half of an unbelievable FBI duo. Indy is rescued from interrogation by a high ranking friend who leads us to believe he's been a spy and served the US. government enough to earn medals.

Um, WHAT?!

*sigh* Back to the quilt of a story, then. Dr. Jones returns to his school where he's fired. What they miss here is he's fired because they're worried he's a Commie sympathizer. I don't think either Spielberg or Lucas know how to deal with anyone but Nazis so their writing around this point is sadly circular and mushy. If you aren't a student of Murrow or basic history, you'd lose this fact entirely as though George and Steve were sitting around trying to come up with a reason to get him fired. "Hey, let's say everyone thinks he's a pinko-bastard and get back to the CGI groundhogs."

Indy is found by Mutt (I shit you not) Williams (LeBouf) as he's trolling the train station platform looking like James Dean, bike and all. How you get a hog onto a train platform is anyone's guess. There's some dialog heavy scenes with Mutt and Indy, they ride Mutt's bike (Indy riding bitch) through campus ending up in the library with a really, REALLY bad falling movement with one of Indy's students.

Indy and Mutt then go on a quest to find this crystal skull which either is or is not in Peru, I couldn't tell. They find it after fighting either 20 or just 1 crazed poison dart blowing local (again, I couldn't tell.) They find an alien skull made of single cut crystal and assume it's an artifact. It's magnetic, but also attracts gold. That was never explained but Mutt does say, "Gold's not magnetic." Right! So why does it attract it? Oh, well we don't know and we aren't going to bother figuring out. Hey, did you see our CGI water fall?

More chase scenes to follow, John Hurt shows up to throw his career away as a crazy old archaeological colleague of Indy's who's lost his mind after Spalko (Blanchett) has made him stare at the skull too long. So at this point the skull is either magnetic or psionic, but we're not sure if it's both.

More chases through a jungle. A giant Russian pathfinder resplendent in buzz saws and chewing wheels leads a convoy through the undergrowth. Indy, newly found Marion Ravenwood (yes, that Marion) beat up the one guard in the truck and find a rocket launcher (which you keep in the back of the prisoner truck) and blow up the pathfinder. Then a car chase ensues on paved jungle. Apparently they only needed the giant buzz-saw tank for a few miles. Mutt fights Spalko with a sword while jungle plants slap his balls, he's separated from everyone until he finds some monkeys. He then Tarzan's back into the fray. Not one swing, mind you, but several dozen. Enough to that he was able to catch up with speeding army vehicles. The fight ends up on a football field sized ant hill crawling with a very industrious and nigh-impossible species of giant ant. They eat a couple red-shirted reds while everyone else escapes over a cliff, and why not, they've been driving amphibious jeeps.

After three plummets down waterfalls, the final one making me giggle as it looked like the opening of Land of the Lost, all the good guys, and the double-but-not-quite-double-crossing Aussie make it to a set of ruins. They figure some puzzles, are set upon by a group of guardian warriors who apparently live in these remote temples buried in the walls for years on end and eventually make it to the central piece which is a room with twelve crystal skeletons...*guh*...ALIEN skeletons. Spalko puts the skull back on the one skeleton and shit starts happening.

Indy, Marion, "Ox" (Hurt) and Mutt all escape but here's what happens. The skeletons merge into a living alien. Spalko says she wants to know, she's on a quest for knowledge. It's actually a redeeming quality to this "bad guy" that I didn't quite get. Anycrap, the now alive alien makes a mean face and her eyes catch fire and she disintegrates, her bits sucked into a dimensional portal. The room is spinning and as we go outside to see our hapless heroes we see the whole temple is spinning because underneath it is a giant, functional flying saucer. It disappears, leaving the Amazon to flow into the hole. Indy giggles about walking through the jungle at dark.

Marion and Jones get married and he's named the Dean of Archaeological studies. Mutt (Henry Jones, III, swear) almost puts on Indy's hat.

I don't know if there's much more I can say about this movie that the really, really bad story doesn't. Indiana Jones wasn't charming. Marion wasn't feisty. Mutt wasn't bad, really, but he was far from wonderful. The editing was slow, scenes dragged on for far too long and the whole thing went from suspension of disbelief to suspension of sanity and morality. There wasn't music when there should have been, there was too much scenery and too many places. Indy never said he was there to get Marion (because she had been captured, mind you, that's why Mutt sought out Indy in the first place) and instead of the protagonist, he became a bystander. Instead of kick-ass Indiana Motherfucking Jones, he became Scooby, C-3PO, Falstaff. He was a witness to events someone else set aside for him to fall into. When made to look smart, he was nerdy smart, not street smart. When made to look tough, he was accidental and stooped.

I'm so heartbroken by this I don't know what to do. It's not that it wasn't as good as Raiders, it was worse than Temple of Doom. It was worse than Howard the Duck. Whatever parts that held any entertainment value were immediately snuffed by a shitty edit, a bad continuity cut, a childish bit of CGI or a poorly delivered line. Whoever wrote Indy's lines made him seem vindictive and simple.

Honestly, I should have known better. If you're younger than, say, 25 and haven't seen this movie yet NOR have you seen Raiders of the Lost Ark, please, please, PLEASE don't go see this. Buy Raiders on DVD or BluRay or whatever and just watch that. Raiders was awesome. Crystal Skull was awful.

I'm watching Raiders while I write this in the hopes that I forget tonight ever happened.


As much I detest anonymous (see: chickenshit) comments telling me I'm stupid, I will at least provide the factual correction. Mutt's opening scene is supposed to be reminiscent of Marlon Brando in The Wild One, not James Dean. Not having ever seen The Wild One, I guess that was more than just an honest mistake. I guess I really am dumb.

I will not apologize for thinking Winstone (an English actor) was trying give the character of McHale an Australian accent. Not having visited the Wiki page where the characters nationality was listed, I was going off the very poor acting of Winstone to make this determination.

Look, if your defending this movie by calling me stupid, I feel really bad for you. I hope it makes you like this movie more, it certainly doesn't for me.


Happy Birthday Gregory

Originally uploaded by Cheryl Rollman.
Four years ago today, Gregory Powell came into the world with much fanfare. He's since become the magical forth member of the family and is easily the cutest and sweetest boy I've ever met.

He's a little terror as well. He loves copying his sister's every word until she screams at me. He loves to scratch and bit and punch and kick. He's shy at first but loves calling people loser when he gets to know them. He's still in the age where he can be accidentally deeply philosophical which can be comical to all the adults in the room.

"Where's the button."

"There is no button, you have to use your imagination."

"No, there's no imagination here."

Gregory loves his sister more than anything in the world. He just wants to play and be with her constantly. When he dreams, he dreams about her. We know because he talks in his sleep.

G-man loves Spider-Man and Lightning McQueen (or Ka-Chow! as he calls him.) His favorite show is Peep and his favorite pastime is collecting rolly-polly bugs in the backyard. He likes to give himself hiccups by burping then saying he needs a spoon full of white sugar.

He got his first bike today and I forsee many years chasing his sister. I hope that when the bikes are long gone, he doesn't do it forever.

As sweet and lovable as he is, he has a tenancy to walk out of bathrooms before putting his pants back on. I think he probably got that from his dad.

Happy birthday, buddy. I love you very much.



Twitter me this, Batman.

So with no social life to speak of, I signed up for Twitter. You'll see the little widget on the sidebar on your right. I plan on sending random thoughts from my phone at least a couple times a day. Hopefully it won't interfere with the regular in depth reporting and insightful analysis of world events, entertainment and scientific discourse found on this the main blog.

Seriously, I need a girlfriend.

Carry on.

Super Algae

I may have to get Twitter just so I can post little comments about stuff I hear on the radio. Problems is, if I get Twitter, that's all I'd ever do.

Moving on. I heard a story on or local NPR affiliate KUT about researchers studying the use of algae as a biofuel. I immediately thought of a science fiction show or movie that mentioned the food they ate tasted too much like algae, but I can't remember it. I want to say it wasn't a recent show even though I know BS:G had a bit about an algae planet where they restocked their food. But I also thought about Enterprise and how their replicators (newly minted) worked based off some biological component like algae.

In any case, I had another moment of The Future Is Now. Small things like algae biofuels or retractable kitchen appliances or three wheeled hybrid cars make me...twitter with anticipation for whatever future is to be had. I mean, is 200bloody8 and there are certain things even the 1938 World Fair said we'd have by now. Sure email is a lot more convenient then 20 million pneumatic tubes for communication, but I'd still like my personal ion powered personal transport. Where are the monorails and Rosie the Robots and phase pistols?

The problem I run into is I want the grand and tend to ignore the minuscule. I miss the days where shuttle launches were broadcast on the major networks and Star Trek was in a prime time slot. Now you can go into space for 30 seconds if you have $1.5 million, a teasing glimmer of events to come. The Haydron Collider is set to start injecting their first particles in a matter of weeks and I hope something shiny comes out of the smashing. I want a black hole to open up and swallow the facility. I want Jodie Foster to hear a burst of noise on her headphones. I want Carl Sagan's magical 70's crystal spaceship.

I also want Pluto back, but whatever.

Carry on.



I don't think I've talked about this yet. New people should know about it though.

Every Monday, Matt Moylan puts up a new cartoon about Transformers. The strip is called LilFormers and you should definitely check it out, especially if you're a fan of the toys or the cartoons.

This one is so full of goodness I nearly spit out my Minute Maid.


How Do You Read 3000 Pages?

There's something truly charming about fantasy novels. There's no car or plane travel so you're guaranteed a long trek across a malicious country. There's always meals of dried meats, breads and cheeses - if you're lucky a skin of wine or a cup of ale. The books always have maps.

A friend of mine loaned me Tad William's epic Memory, Sorrow and Thorn, a classic fantasy that sees the main character rise from castle scullion to reluctant warrior.

At least I think. I've gone through the first two of the trilogy at a numbing 750 pages apiece. The last of the books is a two parter, each with 800 pages - over 3000 pages all said. I fully expect to be finished in a year.

The story centers around a gawky, self deprecating lad named Simon. He's an orphan working in the castle of the capital city of the fictional land of Osten Ard. As per usual in a story of this ilk, a great shadow is passing across the land and the good folk of Osten Ard were either too slow to react to its danger or too dense to see it at all. Simon takes on studies with the kingdom's resident eccentric lore keeper and magician and learns more than he wanted to about how the world works. Like all teenagers in these books, he wants to learn how to make fireballs and ride dragons and turn his foes into pigs. What he gets is a lesson on reading, history and "science." But it's a short lived pursuit, and you'll have to read the rest for yourself.

I'm completely in love with this story. My fantasy knowledge is made up of Tolkien, Fiest and Brooks with pinches of C.S. Lewis memories. Stories like this are Hard Fantasy, much like 2001 would be Hard Science Fiction. I can't help liking these books and Williams does a wonderful job of exploring Simon's mental evolution from mooncalf to man. And while the names and races all seem familiar, they are different enough that you don't automatically think of this as a LotR clone.

Plus, for its length, it's a page turner. There's always flights and fights and discoveries that just make you not want to put it down. It's not light on description, but it's handled in a way that doesn't bore you or make you forget what's happening. My only complaint is the vast gathering of characters, all with the uniquely apostrophized names. There are so many, and many of them die off, that you feel you have to read the appendix just to make sense of them all.

As the story moves into the second book, however, you're solidly aware of who every one is and what their motives are. I'm fairly buzzing with anticipation to start the final book(s) and I'd recommend these to anyone who loves the genre.

Carry on.


Storm Damage

Originally uploaded by xadrian.
Last night we were hit with yet another Central Texas thunderstorm. They're pretty regular around this time of year, being spring and all. For all the families, we're all ok. The kids didn't even wake up from the thunder and lightening. Ms. A's brother and his wife are ok too.

I tried to get a video of the lightning but I'm apparently not good with technology as the only video I got was of me turning off the camera, so you'll just have to take my word for it. The lightning was phenomenal. We knew the storm was approaching so we turned off all the computers and TVs and lights and lit a bunch of candles. Got a few glasses of wine and happily awaited the storm.

P-ville didn't get that much in the way of nastiness, but we did get to see a spectacular lightning show looking up north. I mean it was constant. Imagine the end of a fireworks display where they cram everything that have left into 2 minutes and then stretch that out over an hour. It was awesome in the strictest definition of the word.

There were tornado warnings for our area but nothing happened. I got an email this morning saying there's damage to our building and please don't park on the 4th level. I figured one or two tiles got knocked out and as a precaution they just tell people to stay clear.

Boy was I surprised.

First of all, the roads leading into downtown were covered with debris. And I don't mean the typical leaves and twigs you associate with a storm, I mean the kind of stuff you'd see in news footage about a twister hitting some place in Oklahoma. Ok it wasn't that bad, but there were sizable trees down all over the place and the roads were carpeted with the flotsam of blown-out office windows and open air parking garages.

I haven't heard of anyone I know suffering serious damage. One of Ms. A's friends got some hail through a window (baseball sized) and a tree in her yard crushed a neighbor's shed. That was the worst of it.

Bit of excitement for the day. I don't envy the clean up efforts.


Important News for Artists

Seen over at Drawn! This is large news for freelance artists and I'm a little worried most of us are finding out a day before the bill is being sent up.


Currently, copyright is granted the moment a work is created. This new Orphan Works legislation proposes a change in U.S. copyright that would (indirectly) require artists, illustrators, photographers, and any creative individual to actively maintain and defend their copyright by registering each and every work with privatized registrars. Failure to do so would leave everything you’ve ever created as an artist up for grabs by anyone who wanted to copy, reproduce, create derivative works of, or flat out steal your work since the act defines an “orphan work” as any work where the author is unidentifiable or unlocatable, and applies to both published and unpublished works, U.S. and foreign, regardless of age.

More information in the post including ways to contact your reps, an interview with Brad Holland about the issue as well as some other links. Please act on this if you're an artist.


Goggles4U - Follow Up

Originally uploaded by xadrian.
For those who remember the original posts about getting my new glasses, you'll recall that it was a very seamless and hassle free process. I still believe that.

If you want new glasses.

Goggles4U was the site I chose because they were the absolute cheapest. They had the frames I wanted and the recommendations came very high. Their service was excellent and the glasses were very nice.

The glasses broke last week.

While playing basketball, I was hit and my glasses were knocked off. A chip developed in the lens. I was dismayed because I haven't had them for very long and I regretted not buying goggles to go over them while I played. (We don't play that rough, but when you juke and fake with your head, your glasses get faked out as well and I tend to leave them on the court behind me counting on luck to make the shot blind.) The next week they were knocked off again and the lens split right down the middle.

I have my old glasses on right now. I emailed G4U and asked them if I could send in the frames and get new lenses. I also asked if I sent in other frames if they could put lenses on those too.

They can't. Their reasoning is the reliability of two way shipping.

I emailed back saying that was unfortunate because now I'm going to take their frames to a competitor (39dollarglasses.com) and get new lenses put in. I'll also be sending a second pair of frames AND some sunglasses. 39DG stands to make about $120 off of me and that's money G4U won't get.

Aside from that, despite the inexpensive nature of the glasses, I may not get more frames from G4U. It has nothing to do with their customer service or merchandise, but their policy.

So, if you're interested in buying glasses online, be mindful of lens repair/replacement. G4U doesn't say on their site that it's a service they offer, so it's not as though I was misled. I don't fault them. I think it's sad and unfortunate that they don't offer that service, but that's not for me to decide.

Carry on.


Speed Racer

I'm going to catch hell for this, so read at your own bile inducing peril.

I took LMA to see Speed Racer yesterday. I was going to take her little brother as well but I'm glad I didn't. It was loud, had lots of explosions, tense scenes and frankly a lot of dialog that would have been lost on a three year old.

However, I think LMA liked it well enough.

Hell, I even liked it. I wouldn't consider it a waste of money. It's a good matinée. I mean first of all the Wachowski's are making a full length cartoon based off a 1960's anime. How deep and meaningful could it be? I think you'd be surprised.

Yes, it was bright and fast and the races were impossible and the colors garish. It seemed a little long toward the end but that was because I was sitting next to a little girl with a little girl bladder. But in her defense, she said she wanted to see if she could hold it because she didn't want to miss anything.

For those that don't know the story, Speed Racer revolves around the Racer family and their racing/race car, mom and pop business. The original cartoon saw Speed facing off against various bad guy racers usually paid by local criminal organizations. Members of the family include Mom and Pops Racer, Speeds younger brother Spritle and his chimp friend Chim Chim, as well as loyal mechanic and family friend Sparky. There is also the recurrent character Racer X, who through the course of the TV show is rumored and then eventually shown to be Speed's older brother Rex. In the TV show, Rex runs away after a wreck and a falling out with Pops, vowing to become the best racer in the world. He helps Speed constantly and then drifts back into his unknown life. In the movie, Rex is thought to have died in a horrendous wreck but Speed suspects early on that Racer X is in fact his brother.

The film starts off with a nice flash back of Speed as a youngster, day dreaming of racing (accompanied by a nice child like animation) and whips right into him as a young man driving a local race. The Racer family is shown to be against all major sponsors until a megaconglomerate mogul comes along and nearly woos Speed into becoming part of his team. When Speed finds out this devil is no better than any other, the business man attempts to doom the Racer family financially and legally. Speeds only choice is to side with another racing team - and with Racer X - to bring this company down. The final show down is a grand prix race against a legend and I'll let you figure out the outcome.

Right up until the end, the film seems like a parody of the Wachowski's work. It's dialog heavy but action packed. Yes there are bullet-cam scenes. The ending even has a Neo-going-into-the-light moment that I know you wouldn't have seen from any other film makers. But for all it's glitz and...well, speed, it's a charming story about family and loyalty. The acting is fairly decent considering the cartoon dialog. Emile Hirsch is incredibly wonderful as Speed and Roger Allam (V for Vendetta) does a fairly good Tim Currey bad guy. John Goodman and Susan Sarandon are very charming and Mom and Pops. LMA's favorite was the younger brother Spritle played by Paulie Litt who I swear was channeling Kevin Pollack. I think I was most impressed with Matthew Fox as Racer X. I don't remember much of the cartoon, but I do remember Racer X's ominous voice and Fox did a great job of establishing and staying in that character. I think the only problem I had was with Trixie. I LOVE Christina Ricci and would watch her read the ingredients off an egg carton, but something about her was TOO sexy. I know she was Speed's love interested and thus had to be attractive, but there was something too smoldering and fantastically hot for me to believe she was Speed's childhood sweetheart. I guess that's a personal issue I'll have to work out on my own.

This movie will end up being a cult film, well loved by fans but over looked by Joe and Joann Q. Public. The references are all there (Cruncher Block, Inspector Detector, the 7 buttons, the original theme) but I think most people will view this as a technocolor nightmare. It's too clean, too fast, too well put together and too unreal. And honestly, it's really hard to see past that. I tried and did my best and I think I was able to enjoy the story and the performances and sort of be led down the rabbit hole to a place where things only make sense if you ignore what you see.

It's frenzied but triumphant. It's the pod race from Star Wars without the stupid CGI aliens and damn goofy lines. It's the Fast and the Furious without the testosterone. It IS a good family movie because it's about family and how supporting the ones you love and believing in yourself and your abilities is always the better choice.

I don't have a rating system, but let's say out of 5 Lego pieces I give it 3 1/2.

PS - Bit of trivia. The M on Speed's helmet doesn't stand for "Mach 5" (his car) but for Mifune Motors. In the original cartoon, Speed's name was Mifune Go. In a trend that defined later anime shows, the multilayer linguistic names used in Speed Racer led to later character naming difficulties. The original cartoon was named Mach GoGoGo. The car named Mach, the homophone go for 5, "Speed's" name Go and the English word "go." So the original title would have translated to Mach 5 Go Mifune Go.

Carry on.



Originally uploaded by Cheryl Rollman.
Happy Birthday Little Miss Austin.

Seven years ago, right about now, we were in the hospital with you. Your mom wanted to do a natural birth but you were being a stubborn little turkey and decided you wanted to roll over onto your back and hold onto the cord. Mommy got a shot in her back to help with the pain and then proceeded to fall asleep...she even snored a bit.

Six hours later, you were out. You cried and cooed and wiggled. You tried to deal with the lights with your untrained eyes. Your fingers didn't do anything but flex and hold onto my fingers. You were the smallest thing I'd ever seen.

You also came out with a shock of black hair on the back of your head that clashed pretty fashionably with the rest of your light brown hair.

Over the years you've learned the important things like how to walk and talk and read. You've always been a quick study and most things came early for you; your first words, steps, lost tooth, days without diapers. You've also been a big ol' stinker and have undoubtedly picked up a few bad traits from me and your mom. You're feisty and emotional and fairly crazy.

But dangit if you aren't the smartest and prettiest little girl I know. I hope you have a wonderful day. I love you.



Nine Inch Nails

The last album of Trent Reznor's I bought was WITH TEETH because of the single HAND THAT FEEDS. The rest of the album was ok. It was no DOWNWARD SPIRAL or WISH. Last year after an almost Hall & Oats short span of time, NIN released another album YEAR ZERO which was a break from his record label and offered up tracks specifically intended to be remixed. Early this year, just a few months ago, Reznor put GHOSTS I-IV online. Several tracks were free, the album cut was something like $5 and for some 40 songs. Just a few days ago, another NIN album appeared; THE SLIP. This one is totally free.

I'll have to give it its proper listen, but at that price, why wouldn't it be worth it? GHOSTS was instrumental and that's not what I like about NIN. I didn't like FRAGILE because of the non-lyrical half of the album. There are parts of SPIRAL I don't like because of that. They server as good counter points to the hard driving songs like MARCH OF THE PIGS and STARFUCKERS, but over all I'd rather have HAPPINESS IS SLAVERY for 10-13 tracks.

THE SLIP seems a bit more, I don't know, funky. For NIN, funky just isn't something I'd say normally, but said it I did. It feels like several songs from WITH TEETH bleed over and were put on the shelf until the giant endeavor of GHOSTS was released.

My brother is a huge NIN fan and until all the remixing and record label disputes, was very proud that he owned all the Halo numbers - up to 10 I believe. That was almost 10 years ago. What are we up to now?

Go grab THE SLIP, give it a listen. What will it hurt?

Carry on.


The Real Guitar Heroes (a video post)

I've been spending a lot of time on GH3. So much so that I've taken to watching other players on YouTube. I finally hit a wall today when I realized I'm watching other people on the internet play a game. The culmination of my disgust with myself came while watching a clip from Ellen where a young boy played before a live audience...and the audience lost their fucking mind. They were cheering him on like he wrote, composed and then played the song and was hot and sexy in tight leather pants to boot.

So no more, I say. To The Media I say, IT'S A GAME. It's great that someone can get 100% on the Dragonforce song on Expert 4x hyperspeed, but does it require this level of attention? To the players I say I'M JEALOUS that you can do so well. You have, as the kids on my lawn say, mad skillz (the "z" connotes a 3d20 plus for skills.) At the end of the day, however, I hope you have a back up plan for the time you've spent mastering 5 buttons.

Therefore I offer folks a look at the musicians behind the music. These are the 5 songs I enjoy playing the most. I envy their skill still more.

Knights of Cedonia - Muse

When You Were Young - The Killers

Pride and Joy - Stevie Ray Vaughn

Lay Down - Priestess

Cliffs of Dover - Eric Johnson

Some of these have poor quality as they're filmed by alcoholic lemurs, but you get the idea.

Carry on.



Originally uploaded by xadrian.
I know I haven't written you lately. I feel like I want to tell you things, but there's nothing that comes to mind. I've ignore you, I've ignored Flickr and Penciljack and the rest and I think they're starting to resent me for it. I've noticed some of them are making it harder to log in. Can't say I blame them.

But I just can't seem to find a reason, a muse, a spark. This stack of index cards and its doodlings doesn't fill the void and I'm sorry. I know it's been since forever that I've sent you anything, given you a reason to update your feeds. I wish I had more answers for you. I've tried writing scripts and short stories but I can't seem to get past the idea part of it. I know that hurts you to get only these blithe updates about kids and I know you crave content. I can understand if you want to leave.

I can't say if you give me another chance I'll take it. I don't see movies. I don't read particularly fast and what I read isn't new. I watch a lot of TV, but I'm sure you're tired of being linked to other sites with reviews. That can't feel good. But you can't say I didn't try at the start. I had lots of ideas and a few projects I really thought were going to go places. I gave what I had, I just don't think it was enough.

I'm not hurt or angry with you, I know you have better things to do and deserve more. I'm not going any where. In fact, I have a few things I need to get out of the way and then I'm going to really focus on myself, hopefully pull out some good material and then you won't feel like such a waste of time and space.

And if you see DeviantArt, tell them I never want to talk to them again. They're fucking crazy.



Smoking Ban Closes 7% of N. Ireland Pubs

Work smoke free or don't work at all. Glad you complained?

From BBC News.

Its (The Federation of Retail Licensed Trade) chief executive Stephen Kelly said: "The much-promoted view that non-smokers would be rushing to premises has not materialised.

This has been a much loved topic of debate on LIA (meaning I shout at the tubes until the spittle shorts out my monitor) and to this day I'm still not in favor of these bans.

Here's a quick run down of my talking points.

1) It's prohibition. It didn't work for alcohol, it won't work for tobacco.
2) If it's such a malicious problem, make it illegal. It's hypocritical to take tobacco tax to fund municipal works and education projects but then ban the same substance in public places. Think about it, the cigarettes you can't smoke on this property helped pay for its construction.
3) There are already nonsmoking establishments that serve alcohol. I don't understand the mindset of wanting to go to a bar and then complain of the smoke. It's like going to Six Flags and complaining about the roller coasters.

This isn't just me as a smoker not enjoying watching places I can have a cider and a smoke dwindle to seedy pool halls, it's also the lack of accountability and common sense. If it's so bad you have to publicly ban it, just fraking make it illegal already. If it's legal, and taxable, why are you telling me when I can use it? I don't smoke in my office or in my house. I smoke with other smokers. And where do we congregate? At bars.

Legislation like this makes me feel like I'm working a part time job where they don't want me any longer but instead of firing me they just schedule me for five hours a week in the hope I quit on my own.

Carry on.

First of May

Happy First of May, everyone. Time to go outside and get it on.

First of May by Jonathan Coulton.