Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Random acts of...

...singing and dancing.

...kindness.

...pillows.

Notes on show covers

Saw Echo & the Bunnymen.

Songs covered (in whole or in part), in no order:

  • "Roadhouse Blues", The Doors
  • "The Bends", Radiohead (they did the whole song)
  • "Walk on the Wild Side", Lou Reed (I hate to say it, but he flubbed the rhythm of the "doot-da-doot" part a little).
  • I can't remember — was it the Wilson Pickett tune "In the Midnight Hour" or was it "After Midnight" by J. J. Cale?
Crap, are there any others I'm missing?

Boy Kill Boy was the opening act. For the first couple and last couple songs they played, I felt like the band was pulling against thier own drummer. Then the Bunnymen came out, and right off the bat the drummer was like, "Follow me, boys!" And that's why some bands still headline after 25 years.

Ooh, I feel all connoisseur-y right now. I used to be drummer ignorant, until I had a roommate (brother of the girl with the bed of nails side-show side-job) who had a band. I found out how little I was aware of the difference a good drummer can make. A couple years of paying attention, and now I'm all critiquing and shit.

Zap Squeeze

I had a dream I was working on a device that could squeeze the juice from an orange using microwaves. There was also a bunch of stuff about eating in restaurants of various nationalities (probably related to the Japanese and Korean restaurant conversation with Josh from the day before). A waitress at the English pub-like place was working part-time while she finished an engineering degree, and was fascinated the 3-D mock-up I was making of the device on the restaurant's table. I made out of origami boxes I folded from thick white paper stock and tied together loosely with red string.

On wakening, I realized that the 3-D schmatic was crap, but the core concept would actually work well for purifying water by distillation. My gut tells me it's not worth trying because microwaves probably wouldn't be more cost or enegery efficient than gas or solar heat.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Excuses

The blogger's clich├ęd lament: sorry for the delay in posting.

My big excuses this month are that I have been looking for a new place to stay which I find no where near draining as actually trying to move, that my ability to sleep regularly has waned from the month prior, and that my credit card was taken — most likely picked up in a grocery store parking lot, and was used to buy $200 dollars of something at a gas station (presumably gas) and at other locations — which in turn hindered my ability to enjoy some of my culture's traditional activities, like buying two hotdogs at a baseball game.

I've been delayed for technical reasons, too, since, even though I have two computers, each has a failing hard drive. On one computer, either my insistence on keeping the failing hard drive plugged in so I can seek out salvageable data or the fact that I just added in the new one without upgrading the power supply has prevented me from installing any operating system without the computer rebooting unexpectedly partway through the install, except for a specific version of Windows for which I have lost the registration key. On the other, it's an out-of-warranty laptop with room only for the one drive, which I scavenged because the only thing wrong with it was a corroded IO chip that to get to you have to take the laptop apart as much as humanly possible without destroying it, but once that's done fixing the corrosion is easy except for trying not to lose all the little screws when putting it back together. I still have most of the screws, though I lost my optometry-sized screwdriver, so I can't go back and reconnect the wire that powers the LCD display backlight that the drop from the edge of the sink to the floor must have dislodged during along with causing the aforementioned hard drive failure. But at least the laptop still boots and lets be bring up a web browser, which is good because the only working wireless card I have left is a PCMCIA card that won't fit in the other computer (though of the USB adapters, both of which are bent because I inadvertently rolled on top of them after I fell asleep while listening to podcasts, I think one really only needs a touch-up of solder on a bent connector to be working again, and it's at the bottom of my laundry hamper so I wouldn't forget it and put heavy things on top of it, damaging it irreparably).

And before I forget, there was the whole incident with going to court to argue about a speeding ticket (I still don't think I was going that fast), which didn't work out well; not to mention that I can't find my driver's license, though I think it's one of the boxes where I've packed my books (though to be honest, I've only packed one box and am way behind schedule for moving this weekend) but then, I thought that about my credit card, too.

Oh, and even though it's my own damn fault for working a 14-hour day, I got sick after doing so and haven't been able to shake it off for the past few days.

And believe it or not, I didn’t think I had anything worth blogging about.

I have no talent at living simply, much less writing simply. I think that’s enough for now. I’ll come up with more later, but first I’ll finish my post on differences between Fight Club and kill puppies for satan.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Breakfast of Champions

— no relation to any cereal product implied.

I just finished reading Kurt Vonnegut's breakfast of champions. I think it influenced a couple of my recent posts. It's written with the pacing of instructional children's book, and it'd be a good one at that if it weren't ham-handed with regard to race and too subtle about the martinis and olives. The sex it gets more or less okay.

(I'm sure the racism was intentionally ham-handed, but unlike other blunt parts of the books, the black characters seemed too flat, and I couldn't find any knowing wink from the author indicating that the flatness in particular was a parody of stereotypes.)

The book has an interesting layout, in that it reminded me of some of the best and most cleanly designed web pages, which is nice coming from a book that predated HTTP. The prose also shows the power of simplicity.

I hope it is, as the author has admitted, one of his worst books. It wasn't very good, and I certainly enjoyed reading it.

The favicon from the author's web site comes from one of the hand-drawn pictures in the book: chocolate starfish.

It is a depiction of the author's anus.