beating winter blues

I picked up a copy of The Daily Barometer when I was at OSU. It was the Friday, January 21st edition, and I kept my copy because of an item on page B4 in “The Top 5: Ways to beat the Winter Blues.” It is an amusing bit of tongue in cheek political satire with a bit of college frat boy humor thrown in:

Stare at a picture of the president
Whenever I’m feeling low, I search for true inspiration. It is in these moments that I look at a photo of George W. Bush — smug-ass smile and all — and repeat to myself, “If he can do it, you can do it! U-S-A! U-S-A!” Then, I snort six lines of coke, take a pull of whiskey and go for a drive.
–Brian Gjurgevich
  Editor in chief

gmail atom feed

Cool! I just noticed that I can grab an Atom feed for my Gmail inbox. After doing a quick search on this, it seems that I’m about four months behind on this news.

I probably won’t use this, since I hit my feed aggregator once or twice a day. I much prefer the Gmail Notifier sitting my systems tray.

don’t lay that shit on me

Second-wave feminists in the late 60’s and early 70’s had a rock and roll voice, sung by bands such as the Chicago and New Haven Women’s Liberation Rock Bands.

The Chicago and New Haven Women’s Liberation Rock Bands and Le Tigre – Papa, Don’t Lay That Shit On Me

Second-wave feminists in the late 60’s and early 70’s had a rock and roll voice, sung by bands such as the Chicago and New Haven Women’s Liberation Rock Bands. Precursors to today’s riot grrl and queercore bands, they broke through and gave women in the liberation movements their own rock and roll anthems.

In 1972, Rounder released a record called Mountain Moving Day consisting of four songs each from the Chicago and New Haven Women’s Liberation Rock Bands. It was an attempt to capture the power of their live performances, and neither band was experienced with recording in a studio. This shows through in the roughness of the arrangements, but only if one is looking for it. The power of their songs and the statements they made to women and rock goes beyond these technical issues.

Continue reading “don’t lay that shit on me”

rss feed

Sorry for all of the weirdness with my RSS feed this week. I had some issues with MovableType and I’ve been tweaking my feed setup. It should be stable from now until I decide to tweak it again.

Sorry for all of the weirdness with my RSS feed this week. I had some issues with MovableType and I’ve been tweaking my feed setup. It should be stable from now until I decide to tweak it again.

infusion

A valiant first effort at fiction writing by technical author Clint Smith, but it falls short of its promise.

Infusion by Clint Smith

Infusion is a valiant first effort at fiction writing by technical author Clint Smith, but it falls short of its promise. The plot concept is sound, and makes interesting parallels with the conflicts between economics and ecology, but the actual story-telling could use a bit more work, or at least a better editor. The first half of the book left me cringing quite often, but the pace and the writing pick up in the last third of the book.

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support magnetic ribbons

Support Magnetic Ribbons

Magnetic ribbons for cars are the new statement bumper stickers, but with the advantage of not leaving goo on your $65,000 Lexus LX. In the end, who benefits from this booming industry? Why, it’s the magnetic ribbon manufacturers! That’s why this is the only magnetic ribbon you need.

Update 2/9/05: My magnetic ribbon arrived yesterday and is now proudly displayed on my car.

sonic treat

A sonic treat meant to be savored over and over again.

From the pondering chords at the beginning of the first track to the of the last, Mia Doi Todd’s latest recording, Manzanita is a sonic treat meant to be savored over and over again. Her contralto voice lilts through melodic soundscapes filled with delicate percussion and mellow electric and acoustic guitars. Occasionally the tempo picks up into a mildly retro-60’s groove, such as on the two-ships-passing-in-the-night song “The Last Night of Winter.”

Todd is a poet, as well as a stunning vocalist. Her lyrics speak of love and politics in artfully written phrases and word pictures. She is part philosopher, part lover, and part prophet. In “The Way,” she warns of the impending Armageddon of capitalism:

We all know they’ve got it fixed
in politico-economics.
We’re junking bonds; we’re dropping
bombs we’ve made by guzzling gasoline.
Public confidence is shaken
like the apple from the tree.

I think this is the first time I have heard someone use the phrase “politico-economics” in a song.

The second verse of “My Room Is White” made me catch my breath when I first heard it:

The tide comes in, and we’re caught
by the rocks and the wetness neverendless.
We kiss for the first time, our lips and tongues
tied in fitness, infiniteness.
Then the ocean pulls back somehow,
to reveal a crowd of uncertainty.

The reggae-inspired “Casa Nova” is also one of my favorites from this recording. The musical hook is catchy and the “I’m over you and moving on” message in the lyrics has a universal appeal. The flamenco-flavored “Tongue-tied” also stands out. Truly, this CD contains no duds and can be played on repeat without becoming tiresome.

degunking your gunk

New email users and those overwhelmed by the size of their inboxes will find this book useful.

Degunking Your Email, Spam, and Viruses by Jeff Duntemann

Duntemann is a co-founder of Paraglyph Press, the publisher of this how-to computer book. His previous publications include Degunking Windows (Paraglyph) and Assembly Language Step-by-Step (Wiley), and he has been writing technical books for the geeks and the plebes for many years. I was immediately drawn to the accessible, common language used in the book. Although, I did find it difficult that he tends to use some non-standard terms several times before actually defining them (ie mailbase).

Continue reading “degunking your gunk”