Thursday, April 30

I thought my download speed had increased...

...and so it has! *knock, knock* Upload isn't looking too snazzy though. Oh well, more than doubling my download speed to 11.6 mbit was a nice thing on Comcast's part. =)

Speed Test #70997542 by
Run: 2009-05-01 02:27:25 EST
Download: 11637 (Kbps)
Upload: 2060 (Kbps)
In kilobytes per second: 1420.5 down 251.4 up
Boost: 24483
Latency: 32 ms
Tested by server: 2 flash
User: anonymous
User's DNS:
Compared to the average of 2047 tests from

* download is 42% better, upload is 21% worse

Tim Buckley (1947-1975)

Dream Letter

Lady Time, fly away
I've been thinking
About my yesterdays.

Oh please, listen darling
To my empty prayers
Sleep inside my dreams tonight
All I need to know tonight
Are you, and my child.

Is he a soldier or is he dreamer?
Is he mama's little man?
Does he help you when he can?
Oh....does he ask
About me?

Just like a soldier I been out fighting wars
That the world never knows about
But I never win them loud
There's no crowds around me.

But when I get to thinking about the old days
When love was here to stay
I wonder... if we'd ever tried...
Oh, what I'd give to hold him.


Song to the Siren

Long afloat on shipless oceans
I did all my best to smile
Til your singing eyes and fingers
Drew me loving to your isle.

And you sang, "Sail to me!
Sail to me, let me enfold you.
Here I am, Here I am
Waiting to hold you."

Did I dream you dreamed about me?
Were you hare when I was fox?
Now my foolish boat is leaning
Broken lovelorn on your rocks.

For you sing, "Touch me not!
Touch me not, come back tomorrow."
Oh my heart, oh my heart
Shies from the sorrow.

And I'm as puzzled as a newborn child
I'm as troubled as the tide.
Should I stand amid the breakers?
Or should I lie with death my bride?

Hear me sing, swim to me
Swim to me, let me enfold you.
Here I am, here I am
Waiting to hold you.

sírok, mint a fürdo"s kurva

why do we pray with our eyes closed
with our most important sense cut off
and in the silence of a church
so we can't hear a thing?

is it so we'll commune somehow
beyond the real world that we deny
with a being we've heard of all our lives
but have never actually seen?

why do we pray at all?
nothing ever changes for the good
or if it does one place
in another case a person gets screwed

i only trust in what I can see
hear, taste, touch, and feel
and i don't even trust those senses
half of the time

Mt. Whitney, California

click it!

cover me with dreams
all over, all over
the way you used to

cover me with things
the way
you're not supposed to

because i'm still not convinced
it makes any sense

and i'm not prepared to get scared
just because of it
and the dreams come anyway

whatever i do
i try to sleep, i weep in
my dirty shirt and jeans

well, i'm supposed to

just cover me with dreams
to make it seem
like i'm sleeping

and whisper things
like you used to

like you used to

like you used to

M & M

Little Star
(Stina Nordenstam)

Little star,
So you had to go.
You must have wanted him to know.
You must have wanted the world to know.
Poor little thing,
Now they know.

Little star,
I had to close my eyes.
There was a fire at the warehouse.
They're always waiting for a thing like this.
Came driving from all over town,
For you, little star.

Little star,
So you had to go.
You must have wanted him to know.
You must have wanted the world to know.
Poor little thing,
And now they know.

Laudamus Adorramus Te Dominec
Laudamus Benedicimus Domine Deus
Laudamus Benedicimus Domine Deus
Cum Sancto Spiritu
In Gloria Dei Patris
For you, little star.

Had a plan.

I had a plan, once. No alcohol, smoking, drugs, or sex till I was 20, only studying, self-improvement, mental conditioning, accomplishment. Just till 20, at which point I'd try everything one by one, scientifically to see what they were about, soak it all in completely. Then I'd write my magnum opus that would change the world and be a classic forever, informed by all that I'd crammed into me in those frenzied, heady years, built on a foundation prepared to experience them due to endless reading, understanding larger and larger things, seeing structure, laying the groundwork up to that age.

I'd slave away at my masterpiece and be dead by 25. And it would never ever go out of print, not that it would matter to me after that, but it would leave some mark upon a world which otherwise cares nothing about you. Maybe I'd even "crack it" where so many others had tried and failed, or only succeeded in working out a tiny piece. You know what I mean.

That was the plan. Not a very uplifting one I'll admit. So what went wrong? Well I immersed myself in the study of art and philosophy outside of school, science and rhetoric inside of school, and athletics whenever I could just because I love the feel of my body being in motion (I miss it now, the wind in my air, diving for a ball, being totally exhausted, being totally relaxed). I had the sex which was lousy and the drugs which just fucked up my mind, smoked only a few cigarettes which were disgusting, liked drinking okay except you have to come down, which is dumb.

And then I just went off the rails and had a nervous breakdown because life is so impossibly immense and complex that as prepared as I was to be blown away by it all and still keep my hat on and my fingers on my typewriter (metaphorically), and as much as I trained all my life for that time and thought of nothing else, it still blew me away, far away into the land of Oz, and all my ideas seemed the stupider for thinking that one could actually plan a life out like that and become master of everything and find the Truth and then die a satisfied conqueror in some humane fashion.

No, I just got depressed and lost my nerves of steel, and now here I am years later, everything a broken trail of glass and tears and blood (along with some good times) behind me, trying to rebuild myself. Nothing went as expected, as one might expect. No one is mighty enough to take on life and win, not that way.

How will my life end up?
I might never know love
Never have a family
To grow old along with
Never have that partner
To follow into the shadows.

I'll just age and begin
To malfunction alone
While people I know start
To die ahead of me
Bringing me constant grief
To the very end.

Those who are attractive
And healthy go on to play
The living game, the way
It has been scripted over
Millions of years by
Blind nature.

It feels right.
The rest of us are the
Dead end branches that get
Pruned and seem doomed
To end up the scaffolding
For new life's romances.

Wednesday, April 29

Lovie, my lavender lamb.

Jackson wonders if a quantum theory of gravity will ever be found...

Someone's got my spot

Excuse me, I'm back
I believe someone's taken my spot
In the parking lot
In my sporting life
Between the sheets and in
My head at night
In the pool, looking at
The sun in the denim sky
Driving my car
Someone's taken my place
Amongst the stars, where
People gather to peer
Through dobsonian contraptions
People who used to know me
Now gauge my reactions
My place is being used by
Someone, who has chased away friends
Someone almost unknowable
Has taken all my clothes
Pretended he's me all these years
Pets my cat at night
Has taken over my life
Taken my spot in the limelight
Outside the spotlight
Taken away my health and
Wealth I may have
Once thought about
He's hurrying through his days
Like I don't know about it
Someone's been living a fractured
Love life, and raising other
People's kids,
Some friends of mine found bliss
In the lives they chose
But this person never did
And someone has taken my spot in Heaven
Which is a good thing because I don't
Want it or need it, I only want my
Place back here on earth
In the now, see how the lark sings
For the rebirth of every real thing
I want to see the green of parks
And feel the sweat of the sun
I want to glide into water
See the owls that move through
The tree just beyond the old fence
I want to take it all back
And get off the fence
And stop wearing black
Even if it suits me
And start making sense even if
The fire in my mind sears through me
And makes me blind,
Still speak my mind and be wise
As the lark flies and clouds
Stay deftly moving.


I love the Internet!

Just thought I'd blurt that out, now that my computer is fixed and I'm back on line. =D

Though I did get ten, count 'em ten, books read in the week it was down... Hmm. I know what that means and I'm not gonna dwell on it!

Some sort of compromise with my time is obviously the best solution.

Tuesday, April 21

Daniel Johnston.

“True Love Will Find You In The End.

True love will find you in the end
You'll find out just who was your friend.

Don't be sad, I know you will.
But don't give up until
True love will find you in the end.

This is a promise with a catch
Only if you're looking will it find you.

'Cause true love is searching too!
But how can it recognize you
Unless you step out into the light?

Don't be sad, I know you will.
But don't give up until
True love finds you in the end.

True love will find you in the end
You'll find out just who was your friend.

So don't be sad, I know you will.
But don't give up until
True love finds you in the end
True love finds you in the end
True love will find you in the end.

©Daniel Johnston

Monday, April 20

Jackson looking dubious.

Grantchester Meadows.

Icy wind of night be gone
This is not your domain
In the sky a bird was heard to cry
Misty morning whisperings
And gentle stirring sounds
Belied the deathly silence
That lay all around.

Hear the lark and harken
to the barking of the dog fox
Gone to ground
See the splashing of the kingfisher
Flashing to the water
And a river of green is sliding
Unseen beneath the trees
Laughing as it passes
Through the endless summer
Making for the sea

In the lazy water meadow
I lay me down.
All around me golden sunflakes
Settle on the ground.
Basking in the sunshine
Of a bygone afternoon
Bringing sounds of yesterday
Into this city room.

(©1969 Roger Waters)

The Middle Way.

Following the path as it leads toward 
The darkness in the north 
Weary strangers' faces show their sympathy 
They've seen that hope before 

And if you want to stay for a little bit 
Rest your aching limbs for a little bit 
Before you the night is beckoning 
And you know you can't delay 
You hear the night birds calling you
But you can't catch the words they say
Close your aching eyes, be on your way 

Mist is swirling, creatures crawling 
Hear the roar get louder in your ears 
You know the folly was your own 
But the force behind can't conquer all your fears 

And if you want to stay for a little bit 
Rest your aching limbs for a little bit 
Before you the night is beckoning
And you know you can't delay 
You hear the night birds calling you 
But you can't catch the words they say
Close your aching eyes, be on your way 

Throw your thoughts back many years
To the time when there was life with every morning 
Perhaps a day will come when the light will be as clear as on that morning.

(©1969 David Gilmour)

Sunday, April 19

Speaking of U2.

There are some songs I like very much, namely...

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds

This may have been the tour when I saw Nick & Co., although of course not this actual show. Little did I know it would be the last time I'd have the chance to see Nick, Blixa Bargeld, and Mick Harvey together, after what? More than twenty years as the core of the band? Also present were one of the best lineups in years: Thomas Wydler, Martin P. Casey, Conway Savage, Jim Sclavunos, and Warren Ellis (also of the Aussie band The Dirty Three). Ellis, the most junior member of the band, has "only" been playing with them on a permanent basis since 1997, though he worked as a "guest" member on various tracks going back to 1994. So that means everyone on stage had been working together a minimum of 7 years. Now, with the same lineup but minus Blixa (sob), that togetherness has been pushed to 15 years, enough for any band to really tighen up and become seamless. Nevermind Cave and Harvey have been playing together since high school, well over 30 years. Mick Harvey is the bloke with the red guitar in this video.

Now, I'm not a huge U2 fan; I enjoy one or two tracks per album (sometimes more) but the actual singles they release, and which become their anthems, say nothing to me peronally - it's always an obscure track like "Love is Blindness" or "A Man and a Woman" which I find very interesting. But whatever you think of U2, the fact that those four musicians have been together, with NO additions and NO defections, for more than 30 years is incredible and is what makes them the most popular band in the world. They are as tight in the studio and on stage as the Beatles or Stones or any band has ever been. They can probably literally read each others' minds by now. I'm not saying their songs are as good as those bands' (or even close to Radiohead's for that matter, which in my opinion has been consistently the BEST if not the biggest band of the 1990s and 2000s without a doubt and who will go down with the Beatles, Floyd, U2, Stones, Zeppelin, Smiths, Eagles, and so on as amongst the elite rock bands ever). But U2 have their moments, like on "With Or Without You," "One," "Original of the Species," and so on. Still, the musicianship is what makes them, year after year, decade after decade, the biggest act in the world and makes their sound, if somewhat boring, at least comfortable and recognizable as soon as you hear a note from The Edge or a word from Bono, or that rock solid rhythm section of Adam and Larry - you know you're in the hands of real professionals (even more so with Brian Eno and Daniel Lanois producing; they would make even a bad band sound mediocre).

So with Nick Cave and his Seeds it's not all about Nick. I mean, in one sense, OF COURSE it's all about Nick. He's the Thomas the Tank Engine that makes the locomotive run. He's the poet with the cigarette in his suit and telling all the vivid stories from the other side, the side we don't always want to follow him too but feel somehow compelled. He's the bard, the magicician. But all the cars that follow his Engine have vital contributions to make - the one that carries the coal from the colliaries, the one that hauls vats of marmite, the one that carries passengers, the one which caries plutonium to its secret dumping ground, the one which holds the money that needs to be robbed, and the one containing alien bodies which officially isn't attached to the train at all. Without all these cars, the train would still chug like hell, but it wouldn't be nearly as interesting or deliver a payload so richly varied. And you've all seen those trains with a couple of extra engines attached for extra large loads, right? Well, the Bad Seeds being such the big and widely talented group they are - most of them multi-intrumentalists or extreme specialists in instruments one would not expect to find in a 'rock' band (à la Dead Can Dance) - you can consider Mick Harvey and formerley Blixa Bargeld as two more engines, pushing Cave up that hill during his darkest times and helping him get this ragtag train to the station on time.

I miss Blixa, he was always my favorite band member apart from Nick himself, though he continues to be active in his own longtime band Einstürzende Neubauten, if you're a person brave enough for such things and perhaps speak a little German. It's Blixa in this video who sings first and who is the vocal counterpart to Nick Cave, in case you don't know the band too well, and he was also their lead guitarist and, again with Mick, one of the two chief backup singers (and often shriekers) in the group. He's got the grey/green guitar. This isn't the best quality video, it's too dark (lighting-wise), but it's ok, and it's the best I could scare up with YouTube cracking down on everything worth watching, seemingly now the lapdog of the corporate media moguls instead of the free, almost anarchic enterprise they once were. Well, more about that in an upcoming post.

Enjoy "The Weeping Song"!

Saturday, April 18


So I'm wearing
My prison blues, yes I am
A tee shirt spotted ugly
Underwear and shoes

That's all
All that they gave me

And I'm gon' get them thugs oneday
If I don't calm myself and stay
On my little blue
Social contracts, so they say

But I say
If I gotta go, I'll go, don't you know now
If I gotta leave, I hope you believe
I was a fighter to the end now

And I never in my life
Took yes for an answer
Or did anything just because
To do so would be easier

So I'm wearing,
Yes I'm wearing with shame and pride
My prison blues
And my mood deep inside

Is a mixture
Of ugliness and beauty
Oh yes it is
Because I stayed true

To my only duty
Stayed true, oh whoa
Stayed true
To my only duty

To be myself.


Friday, April 17

Two Tears.

I would have flown
Swum the ocean grey
If I had known
That in the bed you lay

You were two just tears away
From falling

How could I say
What I could not think inside
How could I beg
When my spirit had died?

How could I let you know
But darling, I let you know

Now I'm just two tears away
From falling

They say those who comfort you
Don't understand what troubles you
They say that tough love
Are just two words for greed

But sometimes tough love
With a tender touch, can I ask that much?
Is just, oh darling
Just what I need...

So I would have flown
Swum the ocean grey, all the way
If I had but known, like a stone
In that bed you lay

But I am still wasting
Still crying from tasting
That bitter pill alone

And still you don't know,

That I'm only two tears away
From falling.


Top: xxxxxx
Bottom: Marcel Duchamp.

Goals 'n' stuff.

Really want to learn:

• Web site creation. Web 2.0 programming with inclusion of free gadgets like canned picture viewers/browsers, media players (music and video), and so forth.. just embedding open source stuff for now into an HTML/XHTML/whatever framework. Controlling fonts and pictures in an orderly way. Mouse-over actions and other javascript goodies.

• Photography using my Nikon D200, possiblity of going to school to do it as a job.

• Playing guitar. Start very basic, learn chords, practice, add more chords, practice like crazy, get better, cover songs, write songs, practice more, repeat last few steps.

• French.

Really want to get back to:

• Playing basketball, baseball, tennis.

• Cycling, but maybe mountain biking instead of on the highway :-S

• Rollerblading. I was just getting really good!

• All-round but mostly lower body strength training; sprinting and jumping. I want to feel fleet on my feet again and I want to be able to dunk a basketball again.

Thing #1 - Music!

Let's try to get this little player to play a song from Audioslave...

[Ok, still working on this one... Things never work the first time!]

One thing at a time.

There are a lot of things I want to do with my blog to turn it into more of a website with a blog included, but that will mean ditching Blogger and doing a whole lot of work. Some of the things I want to do are:

  • Host a photo gallery of my own work.

  • Have poetry eBooks viewable on like and maybe for download.

  • Host music and have persistent controls across the site pages so you can listen to a selection of my awesome music while you're visiting.

  • Have a section with short stories, another with editorials, and a true blog section.

  • Have an area with funny or cool stuff I find around the web, either pictures or links.

  • Have a review area: movies, books, electronics, whatever.

  • Have a section like an almanac, with lists of all sorts and interesting facts.

  • Have a lyrics section for all my favorite songs, with snippets of each song available at a click.

  • A webcam fitted to Jackson's collar so we can see the world through his eyes (just kidding).

  • A resume/CV but probably separated someone from the rest of the site (no links between the two), to keep employers from seeing my best fart jokes.

  • I dunno...shrines to The Lakers, Barry Bonds, Kobe Bryant, Lance Armstrong, Magic Johnson, Coca-Cola, Polar Bears, Gibbons, Blade Runner, or whatever. Pics, highlights (including video) and facts, plus a message board at the bottom for guests to leave their opinion (if it disagrees with mine, it goes).

  • A giant hierarchy of interests like a huge tree with each twig ending in web links that will bring you to the best sites I've founds on each thing - the Pyramids of Giza, Scuba gear, fielding fundamentals in baseball, choosing the best camera for you, and so on.

  • Lists of my favorite books, poems, animals, sports teams and players, web sites, bands, songs, and whatever else I can think of (which is a lot).

  • An interactive "tour of history" which presents a world map and has regions you can click on to get an ancient-to-modern summary of the place. Also, world facts, countries, capitals.

  • Math worksheets which randomly generate their numbers and time and grade the results and lots of other educational tools I can think of.

  • Loads of conversion tools - currency, metric to english, etc.

  • Languages - what I'm learning, what I know, common phrases, forums for discussion...I don't know.
  • My ethnic heritage (a genealogy page) which I will hopefully continue to work on and improve continually.

  • Quizzes! Lot of them.

  • Many other things, including snakes.

The idea is not to have a site narrowly focused on one thing, but have a home page act as a hub from which you can get to many pages or "mini-sites" that are mostly self-contained, and take whatever user interface design makes best sense for the information being presented. For example, a picture galley would probably have photo albums with thumbnails inside them, which you could click to enlarge, then go left or right from there to stay on the large size, or go "up" to get back to the thumbnail gallery, and up again to get back to the photo album gallery.

A final four bracket (US College Basketball) would be a big bracket, with blanks like fields on a form for you to type your predictions into. A quiz would be timed and would present you with one question at a time in a linear structure, then give you your score at the end, including maybe a high-score list. And so on. Each mini-site is going to take a different kind of expertise to do just right.

But this is a huge undertaking, so I'm not even going to lay out a grand plan for it right now. I'll never do it. Instead, I'm going to list a few capabilities I'm going to need to learn to use in order to just get off the ground. For now, I'll stick within the Blogger framework, and move on when it's time. I definitely need:

To be able to embed a music player in my blog. It could remain in a corner wherever you went, or not, and it could play random playlists that I choose or allow you a choice. I have to kept it legal, so I'm still thinking about how to to this, but one thing you need to do, just like with videos and pictures, it to get your songs online, because Blogger's not gonna play them off your PC. There are lots of free file hosting sites. Many of them are full of ads and bait-and switch stuff, some are ok but don't give you much room and force you to pay to upgrade, and a very few are both free and generous. Google Pages used to be one, but it's not accepting new applicants anymore, even though I have a Google Account and use Blogger, Picassa, and Gmail. Cheapskates. There IS Google Sites, but it's more of a full-fledged web site creation tool, and seems a waste just to use to store music. Yahoo has something similar. One possibility - I heard that Picassa, where my photos for this blog are stored, will also accept other filetypes as uploads, like mp3s. Now if you tried to link to an mp3 with a photo reference, your gonna get a little broken box or something. But there are also XHTML or Flash music players that will pull mp3s from a source online an autoplay it or wait for the user to use the controls to play it. That's what I'm looking into now. I also just signed up for a free account at a filehosting site called eSnips that exists precisely for the purpose of storing your songs, pictures, videos, and so so, and they give you 5GB for free. Not too bad. I'll report back if I have and bad experiences.

I need to learn how to break of out Blogger's throttle-hold on text formatting if possible and be able to specify my own fonts (or list of preferred fonts in descending order, contingent upon what's installed on the guest's machine) instead of Blogger's stupid 6 or 7, and to have finer control or their size, positioning, leading, and so on. Probably not gonna get kerning control and other page-layout features on a blog, but there's got to be a middle ground. I've seen sites WAY better than mine that AREN'T Flash, they're just using a lot of CSS (cascading style sheets) and Javascript trickery. I need to learn all about that.

That's good enough for now. Eventually I'll need to learn to keep persistent data during a user's visit via some kind of simple database backend, maybe even stick a cookie on their comp so I can welcome them back next time and keep their preferences. But as that will go beying Blogger's capabilities, for right now I'd be happy to get some darned music up and to make my postings a little prettier with all these lovely fonts trapped on my computer and unusable (so far) on my blog. Accomplishing either or both of these things would be the dog's... ball toy.

Thursday, April 16

Sally's Song
(Danny Elfman)

I sense there's something in the wind
That feels like tragedy's at hand
And though I'd like to stand by him
Can't shake this feeling that I have

The worst is just around the bend
And does he notice my feelings for him?
And will he see how much he means to me?
I think it's not to be.

What will become of my dear friend?
Where will his actions lead us then?
Although I'd like to join the crowd
In their enthusiastic cloud

Try as I may, it doesn't last
And will we ever end up together?
No, I think not, it's never to become
For I am not the one.

An example :)

Sorry for those you you who can't play these embedded videos.
Here's a hard link: Evanescence - My Immortal.

Light and dark.

I'm a nice person socially and polite, willing to get along and definitely not a jerk, although I may be a bit lazy and not always want to do a lot of things that take energy if I don't enjoy them. It depends on what it is - I love sports and outdoor recreation, but not 'guy stuff,' like putting together sheds or making home improvements or mowing lawns, so much.

But I refuse to be nice all the way through. It's just not me - there's a rebellious side and an inner conflict and darkness in my soul that won't go away and I'm not sure I want to go away, since it's fused to my very identity. Brendan Perry has a stanza in "Sloth":

Sometimes when I'm sad
I drink to the health of my torment
And dance at the altar
To the tune of a drunken black tango.

Sometimes I feel like that, and it's nothing to do with me being a miserable or burnt-out person.

I just like moody, challenging, sad, haunting but beautiful things. I don't like things that are good and happy with no conflict. I like movies with happy endings but it's sweeter if they had to go through some misery to achieve it. Every writer worth anything knows this and employs it. You can't have a happy story all the way through, or it's just not satisfying.

I like, for lack of a better term, negative music, negative poetry. Novels and movies I like a bit lighter as their length and immersive power can prove overwhelming if they don't contain both dark and light in turn. And by negative, I don't mean I like death metal, or horror movies, or cheap flirtations with senseless gore or psychotic things or have any juvenile fascination with antisocial reaction-provoking. Quite the opposite; I've always hated those things for the cheap trinkets they were, and could never see the point in being a punk literally, though I liked the music when it was couple with intelligence; rebels with a cause, like The Clash.

No, by negative I mean melancholy. Nostalgia. Setting suns. Autumn's first chill. I like Stina Nordendstam and Martin Gore and Cat Power and Swans. I like Emily Bronte and Sylvia Plath and Oscar Wilde's "Ballad of Reading Gaol" and EA Robinson's "Richard Cory." All these things are ineffably, intangibly beautiful to me - fill me with an overwhelming rush of poignancy, bring me just to the point of tears, to that Buddhist "Now" when all my senses are finely honed and open, and I feel alive, and see the world as it is - equal parts majestic and tragically sad.

I suppose I'm a contradiction in some eyes because in a meaningful way I'm really still just a child, and I like very innocent things as well. Winnie the Pooh, The Jungle Book, playing with kids and having action figure wars, throwing a ball back and forth, playing almost any kind of board game, hiding eggs for kids on Easter, watching kids open presents on Christmas (when they're not spoiled kids; and even though it's a tad bittersweet as I recall my own days in Toyland), cute feel-good movies including romantic movies if they're done right, cute children's books if they're done right, and until recently the excited buzz surrounding holidays, though sadly that's now gone. I like stuffed animals and comfy beds and big roaring fires or small cozy ones, and I like the innocence of being with someone you really love, like a contented child, and without any thought of sexual activity.

As usual I suppose I continue to be a person of extremes, either in a kingdom of bliss or a complete void with only the faint tinkle of angelic chimes to break the silence. I fear the days when I can't find any beauty at all. I imagine some of the darkly beautiful things I like (think of Sally singing to herself about Jack in The Nightmare Before Christmas) I like not because of the darkness itself, but because that darkness serves as a contrast to, and to sharpen, the angelic, fragile beauty that's there. It's mournful but not without hope, and so I seize on the hope. When you're bombarded by happy things all the time, it sort of blunts your senses, doesn't it. I don't like cutesy family movies, or much by Disney or Pixar or Dreamworks, except maybe as a distraction which is then pretty much forgettable.

But a Leonard Cohen song, simple, a little dark, but full of aching and longing - that will lodge in my head and heart forever.

Wednesday, April 15


I can read but still not respond to comments on my posts. I'm not ignoring you all, I just need to reinstall everything afresh, especially since I just got a new black iPod Shuffle (yay!) and want to setup iTunes right from the beginning and not have this horrible mess of songs in 5 different locations or more.

I will respond to all your comments. And as for the one about the Nikon, hah, my D200 can beat the pants off that thing (well except in a few areas, which I don't want to know any more about). But what I really want is a D3 or (dreaming) a D3x. Guess I'll have to go pro and take out a large loan to make that one happen.

Monday, April 13

The Return of My Own Photography imminent! I've been without a compact flash card for my small P&S camera, which has rendered it a fancy paperweight for awhile now, but all that's about to change as I've ordered myself a new one with a nice 4GB capacity and moderate write speed. Perfect for my point and shoot Canon; it doesn't need anything better than that and the price my mom and I found on it (a SanDisk, too) was very convincing.

I also intend to get quite serious this spring and summer and beyond in finally mastering my Nikon D200, possibly selling some items I have and using a bit of the money to get a more practical lens than the excellent but limited fixed-focal-length macro lens I currently have attached to it. I skipped the "kit" lens at the time of purchase to save a bit of money, knowing I'd want a better basic zoom, and that the kit lens wasn't worthy of the sophisticated D200 body. Of course I wish I'd waited for the D300, but let's not even go that route. I'm quite happy with what I have and there will always be something better; it's the nature of technology.

Well, hopefully I can soon afford some better glass along the lines of the 18mm - 200mm model. Something common enough to sell in large quantity and thus remain affordable while still being tack-sharp and very fast. That will leave me really only lacking two lenses: A super wide-angle model, and an extreme zoom (400mm+). The long zoom I can do without indefinitely as I'm not planning any African safaris in the near future, but something like a 10mm wide angle lens would be absolutely wonderful!

Unfortunately to get a high-quality lens that wide without resorting to a fish-eye model can get extremely expensive, so it will have to wait for better days financially. But I'm patient and also willing to buy used and to compromise perhaps to a 12mm. The only thing I really insist on is it be a true Nikon (Nikkor). I would rather build up a small stable of excellent Nikon lenses then settle for imitations which I know will only disappoint me whatever their price.

Hope that flash card arrives soon! The weather is gorgeous and my trigger finger is itchy.
Cat of the Day!

Mrs Vivian, an old-style Siamese.
(fuller face than new-style.)

Sunday, April 12

The Sundays
"Summertime" (yes, again)
Lyrics: Harriet Wheeler

Do some people wind up with the one that they adore?
In a heart-shaped hotel room it's what a heart is for
The bubble floats so madly will it stay sky-high?
Hello partner kiss your name bye-bye
Ooh sometimes...

Romantic Piscean seeks angel in disguise
Chinese-speaking girlfriend, big brown eyes
Liverpudlian lady, sophisticated male
Hello partner tell me love can't fail

And it's you and me in the summertime
We'll be hand in hand down in the park
With a squeeze and a sigh and that twinkle in your eye
And all the sunshine banishes the dark

Do some people wind up with the one that they abhor?
In a distant hell-hole room the third world war
But all I see is films where a colourless despair
Meant angry young men with immaculate hair
Oh sometimes...

Get up! a voice inside says there's no time for looking down
Only a pound a word and you're talking to the town
But how do you coin the phrase though that will set your soul apart?
Just to touch a lonely heart

And it's you and me in the summertime
We'll be hand in hand down in the park
With a squeeze and a sigh and that twinkle in your eye
And when the sunshine vanishes you die

And it's you I need in the summertime
As I turn my white skin red
Two peas from the same pod yes we are
Or have I read too much fiction?
Is this how it happens?

Caspian Sea

When we were young
You looked like a stranger
I threw you into a mirror
Wide as the Caspian Sea
And you don't even remember
That's what really kills me
You were all I laughed about
All I thought about
All I longed to be

And still the wind blows
Sand in my face when I walk
Across the beach
I'm still human after all
I feel pain in my hand if I
Grab a bush full of roses
Bleed red and white in my mind
White was your aura
When I knew you as a child

But I didn't know you,
Did I? That part was made up
Later on, you fooled me
I could be from the future
Or assembled yesterday
There's no certainty when
The world loses its foundation
When it's all deranged
And you're dead in the middle.

Monday, April 6

I've gone soul searching.

I'm not on the computer more than a few minutes a day, don't bother trying to get me on it. I'm not on IM or Facebook or anything for now.

I really need to think about some things.

Sunday, April 5

Friday, April 3

Something is squeezing my blog...

For some reason none of the links in the "inner window" part of my blog are working for me, like clicking a picture, or clicking to post a comment. The browser acts like they're not even links. The outer frame, like where you log in, is fine though.

Is everyone having this problem or just me? If you're having this problem, please leave a response to this post telling me so. Thanks.

Thursday, April 2

It's a Sundays Thursday!

The Sundays
Words - Harriet Wheeler; Music - David Gavurin

"Here's Where The Story Ends"



"Wild Horses"
(cover of the song by the Rolling Stones)

Um, it's letting me post text right now (I think).

Question: There aren't too many similarities between The Cure and U2. Name two specific ones if you can. There could be many answers here, but the two I'm thinking of have to do with the band (one) and the lead singers specifically (two).

Anyone who gets both gets a prize-fighting cock.
I can't post normally or reply to any of your replies until I fix my browser. Until then, here is some music for you to listen to. Contemplative, dark, mysterious, adventurous, lush, mellow, somber, relaxing...

Time Jesum Transeuntum et non Riverentum
Words - Nick Cave; Music - The Dirty Three

The Cure - The Same Deep Water As You
Words and music by Robert Smith

Cat Power - Metal Heart (1998 version)
Words and music by Chan Marshall

Mazzy Star - Fade Into You
Words - Hope Sandoval; Music - David Roback

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