2006-11-28 Darren Aronofckingwaysky

I have a crucial decision to make: should I go see Darren Aronofsky's latest movie?

Background: His first movie, π, was wonderful and beautiful (all in black and white) and a little disturbing. I went into his second film, Requiem for a Dream, thin... more->


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2006-11-27 Youtube and the Vaudeville Aesthetic

"I was suddenly struck by the ways that YouTube represents for the early 21st century what Vaudeville represented in the early 20th century."

Amazing critical piece, with amazing links to youTube videos.

via Woot.com


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2006-11-21 I have health care.

I have health care, but I never use it. Which is dumb. The other day, however, at the wedding, I sliced my finger open and had to get six stitches. I was wildly drunk at the time, so I really didn't mind at all. It's only now that I'm beginning to realize just how scary it was.

I've cut myself before (and shocked myself and bashed my head hard enough to leave a permanent dent, &c.) and I've always been fine. Until... more->


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2006-11-20 J-Fashion

Ok, so most modern fashion scares me, and the majority of the stuff in this ... more->


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2006-11-17 Joyously Buried Child

I Ching forecast for the upcoming Triton College production of Buried Child:

The Joyous: "Success! Perseverance is favorable".

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2006-11-17 Requests and Suggestions

Dear Netflix,
I was recently asked to update my gender and birth year information, and I noticed that there were only two options for gender: male and female. I would have expected there to be, at the least, an "other" option, and preferably a text field in which people who are neither male nor female might enter their gender identify (i.e. hijra, androgyne, &c.). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Third_gender

Thanks,
Benjamin


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2006-11-16 Say That

Last night Lena invited me to join her and Peter at the Cultural Center to see the Art. Site Unseen was the name of the installation (can you call it that if it’s only up for a single night?) and basically the city of Chicago just gave the entire building over to crazy modern dance folk. I can't find the official site any more, so I just scanned in my program with the various artists' statements: <PDF>.

So what did I see... more->


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2006-11-16 This Dream I Had a While Ago

I was sitting in a room with a bunch of good friends, including John Cleese. He mentioned that he'd recently had to buy a new shipment of glossy photos for autographing, and I mentioned that it would be stupid of me not to get his autograph myself. If I'm friends with one of the greatest comics ever, I would really kick myself if I never did.

To make things a little less awkward, I made it clear that I would wait and ask him at a public appearance, just like everyone else, and asked him where i... more->


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2006-11-08 The Hymn of Pan

I'm a little leery of putting this up here, because it's really rough. However, only about five people read this, and I often rely on it for archival purposes so I'll add this, my first composition.

The assignment was simply to write 16 bars or so that emphasized the tonic, and then to harmonize the melody. I really enjoyed writing the harmony a lot, but it took me forever to come up with 16 bars of melody! And so many two-measure-bits that went no where, and an awful lot of frustra... more->


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2006-11-07 Announcement: I like pickles now. That is all.
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2006-11-06 Good Fortune

So, one down side (among many) of atheism is that there's no way to show appreciation for outstandingly good luck. I've had a really fantastic weekend, Fortune played quite a role in it, and I'd really like to show my appreciation.

I believe that "giving thanks" for good fortune is dangerous. If one doesn't watch out it can lead to the idea that one is deserving, or can become deserving, of good fortune. "Thank you, God, for singling me out for this great thing. I must be doing something right!"... more->


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2006-11-06 World of Warcraft

This is my new videogame!

I think that some things can truly be called Art, even though they come in the form of a graphical interactive game. World of Warcraft is not Art.

Other things are really ... more->


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2006-11-06 Salome

Oscar Wilde's play Salome is one of my favorite plays, hands down. It is beautiful, lyrical and poetic without ever getting tiresome, because of the fantastic sense of dread from the very beginning of the piece. It has perfect fairy-tale logic--she praises three parts of his body, and he denies her three times. Harod offers her three treasures and she turns him down three times. &c. I like the play because it seems that Wilde really wrote something truly Beautiful, Beautiful more or less from the ... more->


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2006-11-06 The Prestige

Above all else, it is a beautiful movie: the lighting, cinematography, and especially the costumes are breathtaking. There were also quite a few scenes that were really fantastic, quite above par for most movies. The first scene with Telsa, for example, was simply delicious. The plot was also exciting--I really enjoy being shocked by a movie's twists. One twist was predicted by Katya ridiculously early on, but the other twist was a total surprise. There was one other twist that Katya and I compreh... more->


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