I Kan't Spell
I just watched "The Shining" and got jarred. I was scared for the first time since I was about 15. It wasn't Jack. It wasn't Danny. It wasn't the twins. It wasn't the bathroom scene with all the Kubrick Red. It was the man in the dog costume kneeling in from of the 1921 murderer. That was unnecessary and really creepy.
People who put their pictures on blogs should be caned. Except for that Lessig guy. That guys picture makes him look pensive and thoughtful not like a used car salesman wanting to "get you in" that new Audi.
I walked back into that school, that had given me legitimacy amidst lower middle class doubt. I walked right past the front office where I was good enough never to go. The odds for me in Vegas of getting suspended or having severe disciplinary action brought upon me was pretty much even money. Luckily, I avoided those actions by staying focused on wanting to lead a normal life and moderately excel at something. Being surrounded by normalcy and the pursuit of something keeps the dangerous mind awkwardly paralyzed long enough to adjust. As I walked through and saw the looks on the faces of future Volvo owners I felt apart of something. I felt involved. I felt as though I had done something with my life. It had happened passively through the years but somehow I was always aware that it was special. The future's bonuses and perks were always evident. The idea of a private club painted those walls just as thickly now as they did then.
I passed by my old locker and saw old teachers teaching old things. They were perched on their desks looking lost and willingly helpful at the same time. I shook hands with several of those lecturers of whom I had slept through their always repeating words. I smelled smells that sparked memories of what was at the time, intensity and immediacy. I remember squandered opportunities and conquered conversations. I relished the idea of memories and feeling involved in something that was still alive. I walked in to see my favorite teacher of my days there. Brother Filberg, now looking very gaunt and run down as he was in his mid 60's, raised himself from his desk as I lightly knocked on the open door. He still had the same grace and cadence as I remembered. With his hands held together behind his back he strolled to me with a smile of reassurance that I still belonged. He extended his hand and asked how I was.
"You are looking well Mr. Holmes"
"Thank you Brother. You as well. Did you receive my letter from Korea?"
"Yes I did"
I saw his eyes start to look for a metaphor or appeasing way to let me off of my own insecurity about that letter.
He looked at me with those steel blue eyes that matched mine and uttered, "It was like James Joyce, but more stream of consciousness"
I thought back to the letter which was now vaguely remembered. I thought about how I read it three times over and thought it was coherent and poignant. It outlined my thanks for his tutelage throughout the years. It was meant to be endearing. Instead it ended up being taken as though a young man had hastily jotted down thoughts in no specific order. As though I had simply been writing a hundred letters of thoughts jumbled up and his name popped down the brain gumball machine.
"Well, you know Brother, I was never much of a writer." I said with eyes turned down, worrying about how much I have aged from the few years of excess.
"Yes, but it was exactly what I had hoped it would be"
"Well that was exactly what I wanted it to be. I wanted to say 'Thank You' for taking the time."
As those words left my mouth I remembered the letter of recommendation I had asked him to write to attend Bucknell University. I remember opening it and reading about how I was a "mediocre mind" and may not be a fit for such a "prestigious institution". As that thought entered my head, I wanted to find that letter of gratitude and rip it to shreds. Then as if being shaken by my own words, I looked at him, and lowly and shamefully said, "You were always honest with me Brother. But, maybe you should have been more appreciative as well."
He extended his hand to me for probably the last time and nodded.
"Tomorrow I would like to have a drink with you at the Bull Roast with some of the boys. You gentleman were one of my best classes and I would like to catch up and make sure everyone is well"
It seemed odd to me that he wanted to "catch up". His life was one of revernace and poverty. What could he have possibly done that would invovle anymore than a one sided story telling. He said this honestly. He said this the way a man of the cloth would say it. He had hoped to see the fruits of his vows in full swing.
"I would like that Brother. I would like that a lot."
This was said the same way a dejected date accepts the idea of simply being friends. I accepted this with weakness. I turned and walked out of the room. As I walked out of the school I saw the mop haircuts and heard the start of the class prayers as the next period began.
As the teacher's exulted "St John Baptist De Lasalle"
To the reply of "Pray for us"
Followed with what now, to me, seemed like their endless recant of, "And Live Jesus in our hearts"
And the echo of the choir of boys saying, "Forever"
I found myself mouthing those words as I left the school that had taught me just as much today as I learned there in four years.
And there I was driving down Charles Street wearing my leather coat that my ex-girlfriend had bought me. I was listening to the Coldplay album and wondering how she could be replaced. I looked over at this girl in a coat that was fit for nothing more than a Christmas morning let down. She seemed to be nervous and I couldn't understand why. Cool was my attempted motif. I had never really dated before. I had no idea what to do with myself other than to act callous and cold and attempt to remain nothing more than aloof. The era of youth had caught me by the ankle and whispered things to me that I had never heard.
"You know Bret, you need to start sleeping with a lot of girls to fill a void"
"Really? How do I do that?"
"Just act as though you know everything and have a million dollars in the bank"
"Won't that come back to haunt me later down the road"
"Who cares! The celebration of youth is vital to your future."
"Ok, if you say so. I have always trusted my gut, so I guess I'll go with you on this one"
I leaned over in the car and offered to simply skip the meal and return to her dorm room. She accepted and I was born into a life that would lead to smiles and strife.
"Don't bet teases. Teases are for saps who are too chicken to bet with their balls. In the end they end up getting their balls cut off anyway."
"Never bet what you can't pay."
"The gambler's life has to be built around certain absolutes. One of these is that resilience and survival are necessities and that arrogance and empathy are signs of weakness."
"Derelicts orchestrate want you once thought was wild and have now given up in place of condescension"
"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted."
"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."
"Every generation imagines itself to be more intelligent than the one that went before it, and wiser than the one that comes after it."
If you like George, you may want to stay away from the Biography and simply focus on the works. His bio makes you kind of sad and sort of downplays his works in the light of his personal life. I always read the bio's of the books I read but somehow I found this one to be really disturbing. The best one I ever read was easily Aldous. I love this quote though.
"He that is of the opinion money will do everything may well be suspected of doing everything for money."
"Seriousness is an accident of time. It consists in putting too high a value on time. In eternity there is no time. Eternity is a mere moment, just long enough for a joke. "
Hesse Quotes from Demian
"We always define the limits of our personality too narrowly. In general, we count as part of our personality only that which we can recognize as an individual trait or as diverging from the norm. But we can consist of everything the world consists of, each of us, and just as our body contains the genealogical table of evolution as far back as the fish and even much further, so we bear everything in our soul that once was alive in the soul of men. Every god and devil that ever existed, be it among the Greeks, Chinese, or Zulus, are within us, exist as latent possibilities, as wishes, as alternatives. If the human race were to vanish from the face of the earth save for one halfway talented child that had received no education, this child would rediscover the entire course of evolution, it would be capable of producing everything once more, gods and demons, paradises, commandments, the Old and the New testament"
"If you hate a person, you hate something in him that is part of yourself. What isn't part of ourselves doesn't disturb us....The things we see are the same things that are within us. That is why so many people live such an unreal life. They take the images outside them for reality and never allow the world within to assert itself. You can be happy that way. But once you know the other interpretation you no longer have the choice of following the crowd. ...the majorities path is an easy one ours is difficult."
"One never reaches home. But where paths that have affinity for each other intersect, the whole world looks like home, for a time."
"It is not for me sir to offer up my sons blood as lubricant for the next generation of guns...." -- Addressed to Ronald Reagan from a Holocaust victim as Reagan was trying to entertain the idea of reinstating the draft. - Isabella Leightner.
"We have tried militarism and it has failed the human race in every way imaginable." -- An open letter written to President Carter referring to the need to register with selective service.
"You think I have visions because I am an Indian. I have visions because there are visions to be seen" Anonymous
It just became very obvious to me that this thing has started to affect my mood sometimes. It really hasn't been the creative source I had hoped it would turn into. It's a nice place to keep some things but it doesn't feel developed or well thought out in any way. Given my propensity to want to feel quantitative, I struggle with the inability to find progress or pleasure without results. Quite frankly, it has become rather humiliating to read what I write. I need to stop for a little while. Everyone had their rogue years, Jesus, Stalin, Alexander...you know all those guys. It has become evident, what do they call it...an epiphany...Something feels very wrong about the things I write.
It sure is interesting and quite melodical. It reminds me of...lounge music played by the Moldy Peaches.
Ok so you remember how in the movie Good Will Hunting Matt Damon walks into Robin Williams' office and picks apart the books and makes a point to mention "A People's History of the United States". Well I just downloaded that book on mp3 and guess who's reading it, Matt Damon. Other notable names that I have heard reading books as of late.
Christpher Walker - The Raven
James Earl Jones - The Epistle of Paul
Matthew Broderick - Greek Mythology
Samul L Jackson - Greek Mythology
Anthony Hopkins - The Poems of Dylan Thomas
The best is hearing Hemingway do "Old Man in the Sea"...it really comes alive..
oh and you know how they talk about Orson Wells and "War of the World" and how people really flipped out because they thought it was really happening. If you listen to it you'll know why. They have the thing set up as if it were "Classical Music Hour" and they keep interupting with news updates from a downed "saucer like object" that is "metling everyone". It's cool.
I'm mad salty. Mad salty to the point where you could put me on a cured ham. I'm going to try to not write anything hateful. But man I'm mad salty. That's it....and I swear to God....
Man, The Jayhawks...oh Yeah!
It's highly recommended. Save it for a Rainy Day, Blue...it's just good. It feels honest.
Apparently the big hit is Big Sur. Gee I wonder why? The attractiveness to Jack Kerouac has always puzlzled me. Personally I don't really dig Jack. I dint when I listen to him that he really sounds like a foney. Even though this song actually sounds like it's about Big Sur cali instead of Jack I still question the popularity. This is a really good song though.
The next song is about cali as well titled "Santa Cruz"...another good song that sounds like The Shins. It's good toned down Neil Young with a mix of an odd motown backbeat. I kind of like this band. They don't really take themselves seriously either...the lyrics suggest deep thought but the melody is really soft and jazzy.
Fountains of Wayne
Ok so we all know about Stacey's Mom and how good it once was and how agitating it is to hear now. But, what i've learned though my years of pop music is that you can't just turn your back on a band because they are a one hit wonder. You may be surprised by some other gems that you find. Bands such as Our Lady Peace, Nada Surf, Semisonic...these are good albums and they are also bands that have fueled other good albums. So here we go with Fountain of Wayne -
Too Cool for school is an ok tune. I like their bluesy voice, the guy sound a lot like Liam on this. Now the subject matter and the floetry, I can take some arguments with the crap they say. but you know what, they don't take themselves serious, so I'm not going to either. I'll just listen to hang out. Actually on this song though...I really can't take it. That too cool for school thing si just grinding on me.
Wow all kinds of time is about a football play. That's kind of original. I like this song. I would never listen to it in my car or whatever...but this is kind of cute.
Ok so the rifts are cool and this guys voice is killer but the lyrics are just too much for me right now. I'm not a freshman in college anymore so I really can't get down with this as much I used to be able to.
My Afternoon - Panjabi
So this afternoon while I wait for Mikey to get in and then I go tot he ToB show down at the Funk box. I am downloading odd music
found via the wonderful recommendations services that amazon.com provides. Anyway this I'll be posting from time to time about what I find.
Numero uno -
Panjabi found via a list of top 10 cds of the year list, after first searching for Belle and Sebastian. Now I don't really get down to a lot of ethnic club music. But this is ok. I'm pretty sure it's Indian judging from the name and instrumentation. It's pretty good I guess if you about dancing to some odd stuff. Honestly though it sounds like this should be playing in a mob movie. You know the scene where the walk into an off foreign restaurant and the music picks up as the fight then pursues. I can see where this could be ok though. Apparently Jogi is there big jam...oh wait they have an Onyx tribute intro... interesting. This "jogi" song is kind of dope though.
"We All Know You're Hard because We've All Seen You Drinkin From Noon until Noon Again"
So the concert last night was bogus. Old Belle and Sebastian, minus the Sebastian, was there playing their classic muffled tunes. I mean the peope were ok, you know teenage angst wrapped up in a 22 year old body, a lot of square rimmed glasses and trench coats. Anyway, the show was ok, they invited peope up on stage, they played boy with the arab strap, they rocked like it was a pajama party where they didnt want to wake up the parents. But afterwards...
Step Into My Office Baby
Boy With the Arab Strap
Get Away From Me I'm Dying
Judy and the Dream of Horses
I'm sure there are ton more...but im not a B&S expert
I Love Meg White While She Plays Drums
Have I ever explained my total infatuation with Meg White? You have to really see here live to understand the total package. It's like anger and hostility mixed with sister love. It's this really wonderful thing to watch a woman play the drums really sultrily in a red and white, or red and black outfit. Plus while she plays they have a fan blowing her around, and then in the slower songs she smokes a cigarette while she plays. Just unstoppable.
Some poeple would argue that Layla by Cream or Monkey by The Rolling Stones is the best song in there. But if I may pose my own suggestion. I have to go with Baby I love You by thhe Queen herself, Aretha.
Has anyone ever heard of them. They are kind of good. At least "Never Look at the Sun" is good. Go amazon.com!
Laying Down the Virtual Law
Is the title of this article that contains people that are attempting to fuse the virtual and real world to see if any laws are being broken by video games.
Have you ever played Grand Theft Auto? Man you ain't learning a damn thing from that. Not in the way you wanna learn about it. It's gona be really funny considering that these people have no idea about the video game industry, when they do see that game, they may drop a jaw.
Now we're talking:
But then this guy says:
I remember these kids. I used to work with them. They would get their evercrack guy up to a 50 rating and then sell it to some lawyer without a girlfriend for like 2 grand. Seriously...I remember old Jeff Tse making coin off this. Of course that kid makes coin off of everything. Anybody know where Jeff is? I'm going to email him now.
"Who Needs Sewers? We Have Phones That Take Pictures"
An article about how the perv Korean guys are taking upskirt shots while on the subway. Apparently they just throw the camera somewhere, snap the shot, and hang out with it later or put it online for the amusement of all. Either way, now, via GOv't decree, a beep has to go off when snapping a cell phone picture. It still bothers me that they spend billions on enhancing cell phones but they still have turds flowing above ground through the streets. Hmmm
Happy Birthday To You
"Twenty years ago, the first virus was born when Fred Cohen created one as an experiment. Today there are something in the region of 60,000 viruses and worms. Cohen created his virus when he was a doctoral student at the University of Southern California. Cohen's definition of a computer virus as "a program that can 'infect' other programs by modifying them to include a ... version of itself" is generally accepted as a standard."
All the Stats You Can Eat
Go here and play for hours Here's what I have found so far:
There's all kinds of other in-depth stuff as you play around.
We are in the bottom 5 countries when it comes to:
Crime - Bribery victims
Crime - Robbery victims
Economy - Development assistance to LDCs
Economy - GDP - composition by sector (services) (per capita)
Economy - Imports - goods and services
Economy - Innovation (per capita)
Education - Literacy (female) (per capita)
Education - School enrollment - secondary (net) (per capita)
Education - School life expectancy (female) (per capita)
Environment - Water - phosphorus concentration (per capita)
Geography - Precipitation (per capita)
Identification - Oceanographic code (per capita)
Language - Spanish speakers (per capita)
People - Gender development (per capita)
People - Persons per room
And here is a comprehensive list of stats that the US has online.
And Joe Billy Bob Coins The Phrase "Pooper"
If I see one more article giving a dap to someone with the audacity to coin a phrase. "And today Jim coined the 'k-logs'". That's so unbearably ridiculous to think that you can coin a phrase and then want credit for it, as if that gives you legit standing amongst your piers. You know I still want credit for people saying, "Hot", "Floog", "Dip dip dip flip to the flop". I coined all those. Just agitating. Coin the idea...not the the branding method of the idea. It would be like Crest toothpaste saying they coined Crest. No they didn't. They coined the f'n toothepaste that's called "Crest".
Apparently Big Blue and Mr. Bell are gonna throw down in the streets. As the computer mogul is going to set a really good precedence for us people who cringe at their phone bill. or for at least companies that do. IBM is going to switch over to IP phone calls. They and Dell are using Cisco technology to do this, and Cisco is in the black big time come a couple years. A nice trend to see. We'll have to see what the Gov't countermove is, because God knows how tight they are with tracking calls through Ma Bell. I can only imagine it would be easier, but I can also imagine that we will be able to posses more technology to thwart it. I chalk this one up in the people's column.
Real Old School
This is an article about the history of the web. I thought I read some stuff on that tpoic. But I had never heard of Paul Otlet and his envisioning moving desk. Which the auther is making a correlation to being the first knowledge worker environment.
A quote from Mr. Otlet almost 100 years ago.
Like a bad addiction to butterscotch. I really can't stop listening to The Darkness song "I Believe in a Thing Called Love"...man...
Let's Try For A Rough Stat
That's about 400 resume's sent out. And I have gotten about 7 non-auto responses. 7! I'm applying for jobs such as:
Help Desk Technician
Jr. ASP Developer
Assistant NT Admin
I mean come on...these are the jobs that I started applying to after I couldn't get any jobs that I really wanted. It's a shame.
Oh and I got really offended by my lack of comments yesterday. I still think that death metal thing ruled. Oh and it looks like I don't have to be out of my house until about around the 9th of December. Ahh Xmas around the old tail pipe. Sweet...lol....
I am listening to the Greek Mythology series and they said that Pandora openend the jar of everything horrible that was never to known man. Well that throws everything askew.
Another Night of Go Stop, Work, and Launch.com
Subject: Don't buy Pepsi in the new can
I just received this email from someone else's mass forwarding list.
State Bldg. and the Pledge of Allegiance on them. But, Pepsi
left out two little words on the pledge, "Under God." Pepsi said
they did not want to offend anyone. If this is true then we do not
want to offend anyone at the Pepsi corporate office. If we do not
buy any Pepsi product then they will not receive any of our monies.
Our money after all does have the words "Under God" on it.
Please pass this word to everyone you know--let your voices be heard.
We want the words "Under God" to be read by every person who buys a
HOW FAST CAN YOU FORWARD THIS ONE?
I have an idea, don't drink mindless beverages, and even more important don't let pop culture branding bother you. Especially don't let it bother you if they leave off some asinine God thing. Weirdo religious pro-war people. I don't really agree with God being on the money or court houses or anything public for that matter. But, that's at least two or three normal thinking presidents away. So let's see about 2164 we can have that stuff removed. Oh by that time our pollution will make it so you can't walk outside, but don't worry our military and social services will be so incorporated into your lives that we won't need money or the ability to buy our own food, you'll be given your stipend from the day in the salt mines. And a little spending cash to buy your favorite watered down drug of choice. Enjoy! Keep voting Republican and not thinking people. We'll all be real safe one day. This really pissed me off for some reason.
HEY AND I FOUND MY DAMN DEATH METAL THING BRILLIANT...!
Bret's Death Metal Report
Here is a brand of music I have never listened to. My main vein of music is usually Brit Pop with some Indie stuff. So we'll see how it goes.
And that's about all I can take for one night. Woo...that was intense...ill give them that. I feel like I need to take a bath and then go beat someone up.
Another New Link
Based solely on this post I have added Creativity Machine to my list of stuff. I like the other things he says through out the rest of his blog too. I mean, don't think I just based it solely on that post. Oh wait I just said that...but even after that I went and checked out the other stuff and it's good and smart.
I'm Really Getting Tired of Seeing These
"XXX(Insert any company with a commercial) is an equal opportunity employer. We voluntarily monitor our application process to measure our compliance with equal opportunity practices. It would greatly assist us in these efforts if you would answer the following questions."
It would greatly assist you to put my name at the bottom or top of the pile because I'm a certain creed or color. That's so lame to see. How can that be a possible question? How can it be poignant to anything other than complying with some shitty Gov't practice? Hire people on what they've done for christ's sake and how much they want to work there. Don't hire people on how well they'll make your company look like a better bag of skittles when you take an arial photo. And don't believe those damn people that say that diversifying your company leads to more productivity. Good people lead to productivity, the ethnic background has nothing to do with how well they work together. If they work towards the same goal with the same enthusiasm why the hell does it matter if I sit next to an Asian man who is over 40 or a white woman who is under 30. I guarantee you nobody wants to hear that they got a job simply because of their ethnic background or sex. Everyone wants to play on the same playing field. Everyone damnit!
The worst one's to see are the companies that don't have all the ethnic backgrounds down there. They only have what they have left to fill. You'll see 1) Hispanic 2)American Indian 3) Other...that's just horrible and sick.
In preperation for my 80% return to Korea I am listening to Korean pop music. Man it's firggin bad. It' s as though they took the worst parts of all of our pop, hired really bad singers, set up a drum machine, put on baggy jeans and a big floppy hat and started this revolution. It sounds like something they would play at a Christian club meeting in college. With kids sitting around eating pretzels and drinking soda while their dorm mate is out at a raging kegger getting smashed and screwing some girl. This is the kind of pointless crap that those people would listen to. Plastic, horseshit music that makes you smile as long as you forget that you have a dick and people should use it. This music explains so much about that place. It's non-threatening total background music that doesn't matter at all. I like the way they throw in English to the middle of the song and it sounds totally fucked up. I can't wait to go back and dominate once again. I'm so tired of losing, I definitely need a cutlure where I can kick ass again.
Randoms: Songs That We All Probably Know
Ok I'm on Kazaa downloading stuff (oh wait that's the door...oh it's only the RIAA with the FBI task force...yeah they want some money...good luck suckas!...) anyway it's amazing how many people screw up famous old songs. Thisi is what I've seen so far -
Otis Redding singing -
And I'm not talking like one or two users that's about 7 different versions of each. You can imagine the rest. But I'm kinda tired right now to write them down. They are all pretty much interchangable actually to most people. Apparently Percy Sledge never even existed, and Bill Withers is just some guy with an afro. Marvin Gay and the Tempations did all of Al Green's songs and anything else that ever invented with good "make love to me" music. Damn old white people are making the world a horrible place for young downlaoders on the verge of their soul education. These are the same people who buy Sting's Greatest hits. Oh wait...I actually own that...oh damn damn damn...I was young...I didn't know...I swear to God! It does have Fields of Gold on it...woohoo
I just Went Out With My Dad
Welll he's been sitting here in our house for about a month with no money and no car. So if gured I would take him out to watch Monday football and play QB1. QB1 is an online bar game where you guess the plays and stuff. It was pretty ok. I told him how much I hate him and he made excuses. We almost got into a fight and then we sang Otis Redding on the way home. It was one of the best nights we have evr had and I totally include all holidays and birthdays in that list. Yeah! oh and I won on the Under tonight...way to not score anyone...thank you for my extra weeks worth of food.
"Work is Love"
I just like that quote. I thought about it for a while and it really started to make sense. Sometimes people have trouble relating with words or their emotions may just not work. So they work really hard to alleviate the human strain of wanting to love. You have to get it out somehow. My Dad said that to me today. We are mending fences lately. It's ok.
The Ten Most Violated Homepage Design Guidelines
I kind fo liked this...it was informative and really brought me back to the old designing stuff. It's been a while you know. You can get it here...for some more detail but here are the top 10. I am in violation of rule #1, 2, 3. My scores are in bold.
1. Emphasize what your site offers that's of value to users and how your services differ from those of key competitors (X)
2. Use a liquid layout that lets users adjust the homepage size (n/a...this one is really lame though...Readjusting screen is is kind of picky. I refuse to develop for 640x480 anymore.)
3. Use color to distinguish visited and unvisited links(X)
4. Use graphics to show real content, not just to decorate your homepage (X)
5. Include a tag line that explicitly summarizes what the site or company does (X)
6. Make it easy to access anything recently featured on your homepage(X)
7. Include a short site description in the window title (X)
8. Don't use a heading to label the search area; instead use a "Search" button to the right of the box (X)
9. With stock quotes, give the percentage of change, not just the points gained or lost (n/a...this is kind of stretching)
10. Don't include an active link to the homepage on the homepage (CHECK!!!)
So I got 1 out of ten.
I got 2 n/a's.
I need to do some work. My current agenda runs thus:
That's a long road to climb....but i got nothing but time right now...well at least 4 10 days and then they take my computer and my car and take my soul...blah blah blah
Randoms As I Play Spades
A Personal Journal Entry - Feel Free to Please Not Comment
Another decent little day of living and not living. I really got sort of tired of thinking towards the end. I just sort of wanted it to be over. I didn't really do anything this weekend. I sort of took it light in hopes of simplifying my thought patterns. I think it will take a few days to really settle. I was thinking today that my days of original thought and complex passionate ideas are coming to an end. Of course I denied that and wanted to fight that as hard as possible. Somehow though it felt like a more natural place for me to be. I had such good energy until I went to NYC. Then I just got zapped with a weird feeling. I didn't like the feelings I got there and it has stuck with me for a while. There is no way to really describe it other than the feeling that you just want to quit and smile instead of attempting something that seems ridiculous given your inability to crutch on youth or personal achievements anymore. It's as though everything and everybody caught up with me this past week.
It feels like I have no real place anymore. My house is gone in 14 days. I have no job and no money. My options seem few and humbling. Humility hasn't really been a tool I have grown too accustomed to. But at this point I am faced with two choices, leave and run or stay and struggle. Obviously stay and struggle is the correct answer. This somehow feels really wrong. I have no drive to find a place to live. I have no want to ever impose on anyone. When forced into a corner I may choose to scramble. Everyone has the answers but not the action. Everyone has this veiled extended hand of smoke to lend me. It's like looking at a rope that's all but one thread and expecting to climb up the mountain. I know no one can help me with my decision. One, I don't really believe a lot of what people say(Not that they are lies...but I think most of it is just half-assed canned comments), and two I don't really want to be any of those people. This journey is for me to figure out. The first step is to let go of everyone around that I feel ashamed to not be successful in front of. That's the real tree shaking I want to institute. I don't mean financially successful. I mean mentally successful. If I'm anyone other than me and I feel awkward, well then... fuck that. That hasn't been the way I have been living for a long time now. Some people won't believe that considering I'm so loud and odd. But to be honest, yes, I do feel awkward around some people (and everyone does). It's that insecure want to always be popular and accepted. Now that I think about it, there are a ton of people that are going to fall from that tree.
Man that's some hateful stuff. But that's the way it has to be. These are my demons. To face them with people that I constantly feel uncomfortable around feels horrible. To hear them give me advice and actually considering heeding it, is my own ignorance and weakness. I guess I'll just keep throwing the dice until they take them away from me though. That's all I can do. I know I have the will and conviction to withstand almost anything, so the thought of destituion or poverty doesn't bother me. What bothers me is looking in people's faces when they know I have failed. I would rather run then do that. Running is so wrong in that I know as soon as I take off there will be no track for me to run on and the feeling of failure will catch me on the rough terrain. Failure is my worst nightmare. Not winning terrifies me in every sense that is room 101. If I was in 1984, I would be in there simply losing at cards or rock, scissors, paper over and over again. And to read this personal post tomorrow, I will be angry. But to write this now makes me feel, well it isn't helping me at all. It's making me more stupid. It's making me weak. It's helping me say, "It's ok to quit and lose." So I'm going to stop.
Tonight I'm not going out unless I get some sort of unstoppable invitation. That's not likely so I am going to listen to music and do a whole lot of work. BUt I downloaded a lot of music I've been wanting to get to for a while. Here's an overview of some stuff that's just now coming in:
John Paul Gee ""What Video Games have To Teach Us About Learning and Literacy"
I started reading this a little while ago because it came so highly recommended. I have to admit it has spawned some interesting theories of my own thus far:
I'm not even half way through though, so these ideas aren't totally complete. I'll tell you one thing that bothers me about this book (and it really shouldn't bother me since I am way more guilty of this than anyone I know), the grammar and spelling are horrible. I have found at least 10 spelling errors. I mean that guy has to be ticked about the editing.
I Just Found Some Old Photos
Man I just found all these old photos of my Dad and his brother and sister. He was little and looked exactly like me. I also found all the old shitty ass presents I used to give him for Father's day and his birthday(I'm pretty sure my Mom saved them). It was really sad to go through that stuff. It was like looking back into a life that could have been, and then you can see your life. The saddest parts were all the people when he was young writing him letters, and taking pictures with him. All these people wrote endearing things and had such big smiles, as if nothing would ever seperate them from this moment. As we get older it's horrible how things break off and sputter away never to return. Someone once said, "the only thing worse than bad memories is no memories." After spending time with the shambled life that never was, this morning I changed my mind on that topic. I cried for the first time in a long time looking through those old greasy photographs. I'm sorry I found them.
I'm Pissed (and to know me...that doesn't mean angry) and Other Randoms
And I didn't Even Spell Anything Wrong
I just got a dap. Well I guess not really a dap but at least I got someone else reading my other blog. I sound pretty damn smart!
I didn't really want to start putting up all kinds of links to people I didn't really know but the more I read spierbites' blog the more I find myself going back. At first I didn't really dig it. But, he says some funny stuff on there. I also had the hope that this thing would fill up with other friends that I personally know. I guess the fire to share your ideas just doesn't flourish down here in old Bmore. It's not a waste people. You will really enjoy it. I promise.
Thanks to Timothious(the more links...the stronger we get!). This thing now has a face. It's a photo blog for intereting and whimsical things. I would love to have anybody on here that would like to join. I'm sure we can figure something out with the FTP access. But yeah here's the link. photosynthetic molecules
More Eels Please
So I went to BDB last night. Tonight I'm going to see the Eels. And guess what?(what!) Monday it's Guided by Voices at the Recher. This may be the greatest line up for a week ever in Towson. Apart from Dylan, The White Stripes, and Ween back in 2000. Well at least in my personal genre of music love it's up there. So I have been listening to the Eels all day in hopes of getting more psyched. And man...it's working...because the Eels are just friggin unstoppable. If you aren't busy tomorrow and you live in the NYC area. He's playing at the Warsaw. And it's his last show of the year...so it may be a really good one.
DNA Primary Keys
Old 1L already has this up on his site. But I thought I would bring it back to my none-tertiary surfing audience. Plus I wanted to make some longer comments than what he already had. It's an article written about using DNA as a primary key in a silo type database structure that will automatically sort of take form as soon as primary keys switch over to using your DNA. Here Are some quotes and my responses:
"There are several large populations that do not enjoy constitutional protections of privacy, such as the armed services, prisoners, and children. "
MY Comments--- Could this be a more perverse statement. I would never consider children (i.e. parents) as a sect of the population who don't care about their constitutional privacy rights. I have no fear of any child around me becoming abducted by a pedophile or being subject to a mass fall out holocaust relocation program that would have the need for someone to scan their DNA. Why, because it happens about as often as people are killed by rabies. And I don't set up raccoon hunting expeditions in my free time to cure that problem. This is another one of those sick, twisted selling safety messages that is used to strike fear into an already sheepish society. I remember when I was 7, my father heard that my day care was taking fingerprints of all their children so they could "track them" if they ever got "taken away by a stranger". My father went down there and ripped me out of day care and threatened to sew if ink ever got close to my hand. The fear that this country strikes into the hearts of people via the news and chalked up stories of abduction and terrorism is just ridiculous. And no, I will not sacrifice my own liberty for the sake of another's well-being. Therefore I enjoy, and presume that they would enjoy (with the exception of the military or criminals...who live by different rules) their constitutional privacy intact.
"In this model, the single universal database never gets created, not because privacy advocates prevent it, but because it is no longer needed. If primary keys are issued by nature, rather than by each database acting alone, then there is no more need for central databases or advance coordination, because the contents of any two DNA-holding databases can be merged on demand in something close to real time.....The keys and the readers both exist, and the price and general availability of the technology all point to ubiquity and vanishing low cost within a decade. "
MY Comments--- I have never really claimed to be a database expert. But I would personally like to know how the technologies get introduced to one another. So you have your DNA /DNA reader and then you have your 20 million different databases in the world. Is the person issued a card at the DMV after getting their DNA scanned and that card has your new ID number on there? Do people voluntarily give it up as they do their social security number? Why did a social security number primary key not work? Answer that question and you can find how DNA might work. One, not everyone has one. Two, not everyone gives an honest one. What are the major databases that will interact with each other? Obviously my little company's SQL system has no reason to interact with a credit or airplane system. But it still may have information pertinent to "anti-terrorism movement", and isn't that what they'll try and sell us on anyway. I mean I could care less about the car theft analogy or the credit card fraud analogy (which is now becoming confused with terrorism as well), I'm more worried about what I do being thrown into an equation that can label me as a" threat" or not in the name of safety. I don't see these smaller companies. that may have valuable data. being able to totally legitimize their DNA sample taking abilities and then being able to mesh that information into the Gov't DB. I could see that going down if this new enterprise architecture scheme really works out and everyone does transfer over to a strange level of SCORM or XML interoperability.
"The privacy debate tends to be conducted as a religious one, with the absolutists making the most noise. However, for a large number of people, privacy is a relative rather than an absolute good. The use of DNA as an ID will spread in part because people want it to, in the form of credit cards that cannot be used in other hands or cars that cannot be driven by other drivers. Likewise, demands that DNA IDs be derived from populations who do not enjoy constitutional protections, whether felons or children, will be hard to deflect as the cost of reading an individual's DNA falls dramatically, and as the public sees the effective use of DNA in things like rape and paternity cases."
MY Comments--- The privacy debate is not a religious one! I could care less if God or Jesus or anybody else comes into the picture. i don't want myself personally tracked or traced or known in anyway. "Privacy is a relative good" Man who sold you up the creek? Was it all those videos of Al Qaeda froces training? Did you watch the snipers on TV for 3 hours a day? Or how about the anthrax scare, did you get enough of that? All these images and overobsessive things were spawned by 9-11. But think back to OJ abnd Rodney King and all the hype around that. Think about how people wanted investigation of cops and whether or not they were racist or using excessive froce all the time. Everbody bought into it becuase that's what they were selling you. Our dependency for personal opinion, that is now based on Channel 2 news, is just rediculous. These are all ways that the media pushed you into that door known as "leave civil liberties here and enter the world of safety". And I'm not saying safety is bad. But that safety is an illusion. And the world I envision where you have checkpoints and alerts and sirens going off. That sounds a whole bunch scarier than a world where I fend for myself and for the fate of my community, by myself or with my community. I would like to live my life without intruding legislation and without the loss of my own privacy. It's bad enough I pay more than 50% of my incomce in taxes (eh hem socialism/communism). Oh, and how do children not have constitutional protection?
That was a really good article and I'm sure it is a technology that will eventually happen. I just hope that it is used for ease of interoperability and not for tertiary tracking systems that are meant to keep my life in check because people don't know whether or not I'm a "threat". I guess the only thing that bothered me, as it always does, is the thought of people just eating the slop that the media and Gov't slap on their plates. "Hmm can I have more scare tactics. Oh it's ok you can take away pornography. What's that, I need to have good credit to fly. Oh you wan to empty my suitcase in the airport. No problems here." Ahh that fires me up!
An Evening at a Concert With Me and Without Her
And there I was wondering into the Recher Theatre after a couple drinks from across the street. I was pretty excited to be able to shuffle my way up to the semi-front row, in the general admittance small venue. I made way to the bar previous to my placement and ordered two Nati Boh's after paying for the tab next door and then being reimbursed by slightly taken back chums. I had never seen Damon Gough and his alias band known as Badly Drawn Boy (BDB). I was excited and a tad apprehensive after perusing the crowd for cute faces to chime with. But alas there was no one. I did manage to chat with a small Indian girl, of about 20 years old, about her musical interests. I tried to come off like a Badly Drawn Boy expert in the hopes that she may simply drop her jaw and tell me that she wants to leave. Quite presumably, that failed to happen.
The show began no more then ten minutes after my entrance. BDB came out solo with his big guitar with electric tape over the opening that is used to resonate sound. He greeted the audience with a story. It was exactly as I predicted it would be. He played songs from his new album, old album, and yet unreleased album. Many were good and I had a great time simply watching his intensity and peace while owning the stage. During the first set break I realized that I would drink no more and that I needed some interaction with the people around me. My back was hurting slightly, as it often did now in my aging early twenties, from having to stand for so long. I spotted the little Indian girl and what appeared to be her lesbian friend. She said that she was having a great time. I echoed the same but in a more long winded approach as if to sum up my entire life and love for music after one set, there in that tiny shit-hole venue. Just as the conversation was about to get awkward BDB came back on with a full band.
The show was really picking up. He made his way down to the crowd, and on the floor, to talk to people with the microphone still hot. He was singing and making up verses. Since I had been shouting what I thought were humorous banters during the show, he picked me out. We had made eye contact several times during the set and I had made him smile twice with my retorts to his open ended questions to the crowd., He came over and asked me my name and I told him it was Bret. Minutes before he had been talking about Bruce Springsteen, since he loves him so, and he had mentioned what a horrible name "Bruce" was. I, being the sly witted gent of the audience, immediately and without hesitation bemoaned, "My name is Bruce". Now this caused a slight quandary upon our floor interview. It actually caused an extended dialogue between him and I, in the crowd, with people watching, and me underneath his now shared spotlight. I momentarily froze and simply pleaded some sort of ignorance to the question after failing to quickly come up with a retort to follow his, "But I thought your name was Bruce". He moved on after singing a small verse about me, that he was mixing in to his spontaneous song. Luckily the spotlight was off me and I was relegated back to being another one of the crowd. It felt good to be there with him. I was looking at his hideous British dental work and his nappy hair and baggy sagging eyes. I felt pity for the life he must have led trying to get to this point. The years of torment and, what must have seemed to be, fleeing goals of rock immortality. He moved on with his fat little man swagger up and down the aisle that he previously had asked that the audience make for him. He talked with the crowd and made everyone laugh. Everyone was falling deeply in love with the stout little man from Manchester.
The second set ended and BDB returned to play two of his more radio friendly songs for an encore. At this point I found myself out of the trance and the moment. I kept thinking to myself that something was obviously missing from this moment. I should be really enjoying this theatrical music. I wasn't enjoying anything. I was merely forcing myself to enjoy at this point. I had lost the meaning in the night. I was without libation and was facing my own loneliness, sober and alone. I was without her.
I thought to myself there on that floor as he was belting out his last song over the heads of the audience, which was beginning to stagger and wane from the beverages and pot. I thought about her. I thought about how everything I do that is good is somehow ruined by her absence. As if everyday I were walking across the stage at my graduation and reaching for my diploma only to look over my left shoulder and see an empty auditorium. There was nothing I wanted more than to shout to her that I was enjoying myself. There was nothing I wanted more than for her to shout back the same sediment. I wanted to see those big brown eyes and slightly insecure smile. That smile that was like a pat on the head and a bowl of hot soup after a day of shoveling the walkway. There I was at the height of the encore, arms folded, head bowed, and personally drained.
I had lost the war of denial. I had failed to defeat the thought of defeat. I was enraged. I wanted to drive to her new home in the lap of nothingness, shared with a scarecrow man and rip her out of it. I wanted to bleed on the concrete of their driveway. I envisioned myself pounding my fists in rage of knowing that it wasn't right without her pride there guiding me. I wanted to take her with me to wherever I was going and watch her cheer and join in the life that waits. I wanted all these things to happen.
I got into my car and rooted for a CD that would bring memories and heartache. I found nothing. I had ridden myself of so much that I once involved with the thought of her that all I was left with now was the attempt at discovering new music. I rummaged and rummaged through a stack of CDs. I was desperately looking for something to drown myself further into. I found nothing that would drench me in pity. So I reached back and put in the BDB CD that never got played on the trip to the theatre. I put it in and enjoyed the songs that he played for his encore. I enjoyed them alone while driving home and singing at the top of my lungs.
Anybody Got Any Ideas
On why my archives for the Knowledge Blogger and my anchors don't work on either one. If you have had this problem just point me in the right direction.
Apparently the lead singer (or ex lead singer) of the Dead Kennedys has this stand up rant tour. Anyway I listened to the mp3. It's called "Ban Everything". I'm sure you can find it out there. But anyway it relates to this post byTim about the Govenrment wanting to ban porn because we are all too lazy to think for ouselves and rear our children without the aid of television. Anyway...check it out. It's pretty good.
Ok so I have been listening to all these foreign language tapes on mp3 all morning. Pimsleur makes them. I suggest you check them out. Let's see I've got:
German and Korean are the only ones I'm making progress on. But it's kind of fun to sit here and listen.
I just saw a mock interview with Noel Gallagher on the Craig Kilborne show. They were making fun of his eye brows. Noel's got some bushy brows and all...I don't know it made me smile.
Bret's Night of CD Reviews
While I do work I will attempt to review these cds that I purchased last week.
Morphine "The Night" - I kind of like the empty orchid with teeth on the cover. Doug recommended this cd so I really don't know much about them. I know that Megs used to say she listened to them. And so did Sarah but other than that, I have never really listened. Ok so here we go. Wow, Nick Drake meets...well.... Nick Drake's band. Is this Nick Drake? Wait, they get funky with some techno type Coltrane with a synth stuff. Ok I can already tell that this is one of those personal albums that you sort of need to spend some time with. You know, some time with a bottle and some drugs or something. It's definitely good. This has some really good sax baselines and stuff. It's definitely interesting. I thought it would be off by now (track 7) but it's hanging strong and even starting to really key me to enjoy it. I mean as long as I still think Nick Drake is singing. The lyrics are interesting and not quite "kill me".
Rating 7.1 out of 10
The Strokes "Room on Fire" - Ok so I loved the first one. Well I guess everyone did. And we all have that fear that we aren't that cool anymore if we listen to music that everyone is listening to. But I think that if you honestly go out and buy that first cd when it's nothing, then you have stake in the band. I can show you tickets for shows in 2000 and I have the original printed release with the girl smacking her ass. So given that I figure I won't give up just yet. I know I liked them for a reason. I just can't go see them live anymore. They sucked live anyway.
Oh wow this is good. I was expecting it to be bad. I guess I sort of wanted it to be bad. But this sounds just like the first one but a little more jazzed up and less angry. Good edge. Well done. Julian sounds like Liam. Julain has a great voice and his lyrics are sort of different. It's like playful anger that makes fun of girls to their face. I really like it. A lot of it sounds too much the same but it's a style I can adjust too and like considering the cd is only about 45 minutes long. It blows through and rips. Good choice on firing Nigel Godrich.
Rating 8.1 out of 10
Travis "12 Memories" - I have always been a huge Travis fan. I found myself with egg on my face at the last show when I didn't even know they had a new album out. All their albums are pretty good and I recommend checking them out. This is the newest one. Easily one of the nicest most peaceful bands ever. The lead drummer is just insanely underrated and so damn good, especially live. Wow they got Steve Orchard instead of Nigel on this one. Interesting... its definitely a different sound. This is my speed of music though.
I would like to say that Travis has really grown since their initial commercial success. They have grown. But they've grown further into what I sort of feared they would grow into. They became an icon or an enigma within themselves. They take themselves very seriously on this cd. I like it. But, I also like my fruity pop.
Rating 6.8 out of 10
Van Morrison "Astral Weeks" Tim is saying that this CD outshines "Moondance". Considering that is one of my all time favorite CD's and given Tim's propensity to like the same vain of music as I do, I had to give it a go. So here we go. I can already tell that this CD is really good and I'm only 3 songs through. It's amazing how consistant Van is, but then again I know it will take me at least 3 or 4 listening to really get into it. That's the bueaty of Van. You really have to sort of pay attention and be involved or else it slips by you and you don't notice the beauty. If Van wasn't such a prick I would probably be more in love, or at least willing to go check out more of his stuff. This may inspire me to get Tb Sheets, which I wanted anyway and has the best Van song ever on it...the title song.
Rating 8.4 / 10
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club "Take Them On, On Your Own" I bought their first CD after the suggestion of Mr. Noel Gallagher. I thought it was good but I also thought QotSA did it better. It's sort of the same sound. This album is much more poppy and hence I enjoy it more. Because I love my music sugary to the point of me being able to sing. Else you better have something to say. Anyway, this is good rock n' roll. They don't really play around with their music. They play straight up stuff. They dress in black all the time while they live in L.A. They were the Stokres before the Strokes were the Strokes. It was a shame they were in L.A. and didn't get the movement they needed. Well let's see how the sophomore effort went.
This is the kind of album you smoke and drive to with sunglasses on. It's good...sort of...
My Morning Jacket "It Still Moves" OK so after a ll the hype and accolades they are getting. I bought on the hook and got this. I'm not too jazzed because I have heard a bunch of mp3's. Bu tyou know hwat. Screw MP3's. I hat ethem. My MP3 directory is call unintimate. Why? Because you don't get the feel. Imagine if you got Let i Bled or Exile on Main Street all inpieces and mixed in with other crap like "Brown Sugar". You wouldn't relaly love it. That's why i got this. I need the rhythm and flow of a CD. So let's see what they got. Holy Crap it sounds like Neil Young singing in a cradboard box.
Rating 8.3 / 10
Oh Here's that Neil Young thing. Where he got sued by his own record company for making "non-commercial" music.
David Cross is Making Fun of Me
The reason I really don't like listening to comedy sometimes is because I find myself being the butt of a joke. And the worst part is that you start laughing and then you go to the smirk and then you start making arguments for yourself. Listen to the trash man bit off of the "sex on the Internet" mp3 and see if you see my face attached to that description. Damn you David Cross and your imaginative way of making fun of people. Damn you and your intervention via winamp. This was all a joke by the way.
5 sins of a general. Ruinous to the conduct of war.
Cowardness - Leads to capture
Hasty temper - Provoked by insults
A delicacy to honor - sensitive to shame
Over solicitude for his men - Exposes to worry and trouble
"Let them be a subject for meditation."
Pandora Song List
Amazon Wish List
Revolutionary Wealth - Tofflers
Things Making Me Smile
Listening - [out of 5]
Benjy Ferree - 4.8
The Thermals 3.1
David Gray 3.8
Like the guy with the beard? YES - like the guy with the beers. What? Yep
Bands That I Check Schedules For
Badly Drawn Boy
Belle and Sebastian
The Black Keys
Drive By Truckers
Mark Hopkins Band
Iron and Wine
Mates of State
Two if By Sea
Places I Rock in the Flesh
The Knitting Factory
The Otto Bar
Places I Eat/Drink in the Flesh
Cross Street Market
No Way Jose
The Irish Pub
The Waterfront Hotel
My Greatest Hits (that's so lame)
The time I almost killed a child
July 4th in Korea
Excerpts from Demian
Why I screen phone calls
Bret's Death Metal Report
A conversation at a cocktail party
A conversation at breakfast
So you think you are a Baltimorian
A conversation about a girl singer
Observations from a bar
Observations of strippers
Why I love Oasis
I would go to war
"You Son of a Bitch" An Open Letter to Tom Friend
Dance to Your Ocean
When men become pussies
Jason Whitlock is a racist propaganda promoter
Pitchfork takes music snobbery to new level
The Cosmic Clash of the Red Sox and Cubs
The Hatred that is Runts Candy
Starting corporate line-up
Do you know me? List 1 / List 2 / List 3
The Night I Burned Philly Down
So You Want to be a Booze Hound
She Said it was Free
Funniest Corporate Story Ever
Striped Shirts and the Fucks that Wear Them
Pieces of Morning
Oasis Album Revew
The Art of Tipping
Starting Fires With Grass Stains
Bret's Federal Hill Food Review
Sexcapades and your Picture on the Internet
Stupid Secrets the Return
Stuff I Swing By From Time to Time
Indie Video Archive
Large Hearted Boy
Pitch Fork Media
Scenestars MP3 Blogs
Sound Garden Baltimore
Angry Little Girls
Junior Varsity Meat Market
Baltimore City Paper
The Baltimore Sun
Villa Julie College Baseball
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